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Ai Indianapolis Annual Fashion Show - "Cultured"

By: Abby Shaffer Filed under: Fashion

March 9, 2018

Tucked behind Lucas Oil Stadium, student designs scored on the runway at Crane Bay Event Center. The urban, industrial venue was the perfect backdrop for The Art Institute of Indianapolis Fashion Show. Every year, the talent displayed by the students amazes the audience. “We strive to set the standard for local fashion shows,” said Academic Director of Design Gary Stephens. “And I believe the students worked as team players to accomplish the goal of producing a great show.”

Senior Collection design by Shakay Gillard Activewear design by Christian Ladig

Swimwear designed by Ala'a Alqawasmeh Womenswear design by De'Sean Isom

The fashion show is a year-long culmination of student work from fashion design classes, as well as senior collections created by graduating students. Stephens believes students incorporated upcoming trends, but also “really trusted their instincts with the looks this year.” The show's theme, “Cultured,” gave the audience a unique look at the cultures around the world through fashion. Other designs covered the categories of swim, active, lingerie, pop culture as designed for the Children’s Museum Exhibit, and senior collections.

 Orlando Matthews, Backstage Captain

While student designers are a big part of the show, this is a school-wide event—an amazing, real-world experience that all the students can participate. Graphic Design student M.J. Gillot created the marketing material, including the logo. Academic Director for media Rocky Rothrock and Digital Photography alum Cristina Hernandez headed up the photography. The Event and Fashion Show Production class helped the show run smoothly. And for the second year, Fashion Marketing & Management student Orlando Matthews was the Backstage Captain. Matthews was pleased with the show and his experience. “I really enjoy the experience,” said Matthews. “Working with all different people, keeping the energy up, planning out the timing and adjusting with the changes—no matter how much you iron out the wrinkles, something comes up, but the show is a hit anytime those wrinkles aren’t seen (by the audience).”

 Shakay Gillard receives 1st Place for Senior Collections

The experience is not all students take away from the show. Scholarships toward their degree at The Art Institute of Indianapolis are provided to winners for each category, including a stylist project where Fashion Marketing & Management students compete. The biggest winner of the night was Shakay Gillard, recent Fashion Design alum, for her senior collection. Shakay is a recent Fashion Design graduate who is currently employed at Nordstroms as a sewer. “Shakay worked tirelessly to create her own fabrics for her collection,” said Stephens. “She also introduced the ‘bust cape,' a relatively new take on layering pieces. The end result was amazing.”

Other winners include:


• Fashion Stylist Project (ICON) - Lindsey Wright

• Cultured - 1st - Debra Mayfield                        

• Cultured - 2nd - Starlynn Lucero

• Pop Culture - 1st Bryanna Slisher

• Pop Culture - 2nd - Ala’a Alqawasmeh                          

• Menswear - Jessica McKinney

• Womenswear - De'Sean Isom

• Swim - Ala’a Alqawasmeh

• Activewear - Christian Ladig

• Senior Collections - Shakay Gillard



We could not have our show without our sponsors. Thank you to Saks Fifth Avenue, Aveda Frederic’s Institute, Arby’s, Love Your Body Boutique, and The Fresh Market, Carmel. We look forward to doing this again next year. Check out our social media for more images from the event.

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By: Abby Shaffer Filed under: Fashion

March 9, 2018

Fashion Fashion Show