Kent State hosted its 13th annual Rock the Runway on March 4, 2017, showcasing the work of 21 fashion students.
The event is not only fashion show, but a competition. The theme this year was The Roaring 20s. Each contestant created a collection based on this theme, putting their individual twist on it.
“Rock The Runway was amazing,” said Bin Zhou, fashion design major and contestant. “It was a struggle for me because of time management, but this Rock The Runway was beautiful.”
The show opened with a video highlighting some of the most prominent figures and major movements during the 1920s, such as the women’s Suffrage Movement, Langston Hughes and Coco Chanel.
The host of the night, sophomore communication major Michael Gallagher, introduced the judges. Among the panel was Sarah Hume, Associate Professor and Curator of the Kent State University Museum, Effie Tsengas, Director of Communication and Marketing and Dawn Bilinovich, General Manager and Event Coordinator of Wolf Creek Tavern.
Gallagher then started the show. Each model strutted down the runway modeling the designs. ADA by Chinonso Aladi opened the show. Other notable collections came from Bank’s Open by Phoebe Takeda and Post Prohibition by Katie Crum.
The crowd gasped in awe as they saw an edgier more modern take on the theme during the viewing of Post Prohibition. Crum said she put together a fur coat in her collection by cutting six pieces for every spot on the coat.
After the collections were shown, the judges deliberated and picked the top three of the night: Bank’s Open, Living Lindy and Post Prohibition. The crowd voted for their favorite collection of the night as well.
We’re Pretty Girls, Floyd by Emily Rinehardt and Rachel Weidner won the audience’s choice. The girls excitedly accepted their award and prize, a $500 gift card to Mood Fabrics in New York.
The big win of the night went to Living Lindy by Kassidy Brillhart and Ann Marie Elaban. The girls received $2,500 toward their tuition for next semester, which they gleefully accepted.
Rock The Runway was not only a great time for the designers, but also for the models.
“This is my first time modeling in Rock the Runway, but also my last because I’m a senior,” said Electa Royal, fashion design major. “It was a lot of fun with a lot of great looks, and I’m glad that I got to do it.”
Audience members came out in full support for their friends and family.
“Being in a creative field, we see a bunch of people do their own art, but it’s really cool to actually see it in a different school for Kent State,” said Adrian Leuthauser, journalism major.
By the end of Rock the Runway, designers were able to show off their skills, models were able to strut their stuff and the audience members left feeling inspired.