'Fashion is a way to express yourself': Students talk designs at VIM show
VIM Magazine collaborated with the Michigan State University Activities Board, or UAB, to host a fashion show in the MSU Union Ballroom on Friday. The event was attended by social media influencers, giving designers and models the chance to network with professionals.
VIM is a student-run fashion, beauty and lifestyle magazine established in 2010. This is their second fashion show, the first one was hosted at the Marriott Hotel in Downtown East Lansing. The magazine also recently released their spring 2019 issue.
Advertising management senior Zoey Berghoff, who is also the co-Editor-in-Chief of VIM, discussed the masquerade theme of the show.
“We wanted to show a chic side," Berghoff said. "Everyone had their own touch on how they wanted to portray that. We really wanted the designers to speak for themselves and have a dark, eerie feel to the night.”
Designers Mikayla Frick and Kitty Johnson said they wanted to let their designs speak for themselves. Both are apparel and textile design seniors.
“Everything is concept based and it revolves around the stories of life,” Frick said. “I like to tell — whether it's my story or something I've been through or something somebody else (has been through) ... That's what you'll see."
Frick has been involved in numerous fashion shows around the United States. She participated in STYLEWEEK Northeast in Rhode Island and IDENTITIES Fashion Show at Harvard University, showcasing her designs.
“This is my sixth show in the past two months, so I am getting pretty good at it,” Frick said. “I am a little bit more experienced now, I used to get super stressed out. Now, I am like, 'Stress gets you nowhere, it’s going to be okay.' ... I try to have more fun with it.”
After graduation, Johnson plans to continue designing and hopes to be her own boss. The pieces she prepared for this show were based on two different concepts.
“The first design that’s closing the show is called 'bonsai tower,' which is a mashup of the bonsai tree and the Eiffel Tower,” Johnson said.
Johnson expressed that the concept of this design was inspired by a previous fashion show where designers mixed architecture with nature.
“I took inspiration from yin and yang, which represents balance just like the bonsai tree — the red and black represent yin and yang," Johnson said.
Johnson said her second piece aimed to bring attention to the social injustice experienced by black women in the U.S.
“My second piece is based on the statistic that black woman are three times more likely to die during childbirth than white women,” Johnson said.
She screen-printed the mask, which features three pregnant black women, the number "2" and one pregnant white woman. It also featured text that read, “The disparity in death rates has everything to do with the lived experience of being a black woman in America."
Both Frick and Johnson agreed that they like to express themselves through fashion design.
“Fashion is a way to express yourself," Frick said. “I love it, it’s just a way to escape from everything for me.”
While these apparel and textile design students are paving the way as new designers, VIM also gives other creatives a chance to get their skills out there. Advertising management sophomore Brianna Olszewski, who is also a member on the public relations team, spoke on the kinds of opportunities the magazine offers students.
“We have everything from stylists to graphic designers,” Olszewski said. “We have business teams, which is more behind the scenes. You can apply to be on the team or you can be a general member."