May 20, 2022

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SIU fashion design student to showcase sustainability-inspired creations in runway show | SIU


Leslee Lunden Lofton is making the most of an opportunity she saw in her individual closet.

Impressed by her personal outdated clothes, clothes at area thrift shops and an work toward sustainability, Lofton, a senior in Southern Illinois College Carbondale’s manner structure software, is repurposing clothing as she prepares to unveil her line at the University student Showcase and Runway Trend Show, Thursday, April 21, in Scholar Center Ballroom D.

Upcycling, or repurposing old objects, is a development in the trend industry that has develop into much more prevalent the past number of decades due to the COVID-19 pandemic and worry about the Earth’s surroundings, said Lofton and Laura Kidd, an affiliate professor in the Faculty of Architecture and program director. Lofton’s eight-garment line, labeled Again-to-the-’90s: Thrift-it Edition, is motivated by sitcoms Lofton viewed as a kid, such as “The New Prince of Bel-Air,” “A Distinct World” and “Sister, Sister.”

“Leslee  is undertaking a assortment motivated by what I have preferred to see a designer do for a long time,” Kidd mentioned. “She arrived up with an concept and was shopping for her clothes all summertime. She was acquiring tops and bottoms that no person wishes.

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“It’s been excellent to enjoy her really start out thinking like a designer and contemplating exterior the box and coming up with options. Leslee has place a large amount of hard operate into this.”

As Lofton, who graduated from Chicago Butler Higher education Prep Significant University, a short while ago was tearing apart the seams on an old skirt that she never wore to change it into a major, she defined the relevance of sustainability and lowering squander.

“It’s a good way to enable the earth – reusing apparel to make one thing new,” she claimed. “It started in the summer season, and over the summertime, I held the exact topic. I spent a lot of time seeking at the material to see what I could do with it. I’m generating a top that were being shorts. I have to assume of unique and artistic techniques to make something totally unique.”

The future occasion marks the 2nd in-person trend clearly show as component of SIU’s program she will take part in. As a program requirement, Lofton’s line will aspect eight parts, with eight versions who are named for a character from one particular of the three sitcoms. Designers are dependable for obtaining their possess models and perform with them on fittings.

“There’s a little bit of force to get almost everything completed,” Lofton mentioned. “It’s the course of action. I have to tempo myself. But I’m at the ultimate element of each individual garment, so there is not a total ton of anxiety.”

Pandemic performed a purpose

The pandemic prompted men and women to embark on much more do-it-yourself jobs.

“When you are trapped in the dwelling you uncover things to do the outfits sector has picked up that.

There is an explosion of recycling,” stated Lofton, who returned to campus in drop 2021 for her senior year immediately after spending most of the spring 2020 semester and all of her junior 12 months as an online student.

Kidd additional there have been discussions in the style marketplace about lessening waste for a very long time, but that the pandemic speeded issues up.

“People began building and creating outfits from what they had, what they could discover, or they acquired tired of looking at two or 3 garments in their closet, so they determined to mix them into a thing new,” Kidd explained.

“And these younger designers, a great deal of them are incredibly considerate about the waste and striving to reuse factors and sustainability.”

A crucial is ‘patience’

Lofton credits her grandmother with sparking her first interest in clothes and design and style by having her to a couple stitching classes whilst in large college. She came to SIU’s program for the reason that it was very affordable and 1 of the number of Illinois educational facilities with a vogue structure application. SIU continues to be the only public university in Illinois that gives style structure as a separate specialization.

Whilst the hard work to style and piece with each other material into style can choose a extended time, Lofton said, the crucial is having tolerance.

“You have to appreciate it,” Lofton reported. Through the pandemic, she started building masks for family members and started advertising them via term-of-mouth. That blossomed into her own on the web apparel business, Lunden Leslee, which Lofton plans to broaden immediately after she graduates in Could. She desires to keep on generating tailor made outfits using thrift and sustainable product.

Initial runway present in three a long time

Kidd famous that students are thrilled to be ready to return to an in-man or woman celebration. Immediately after the 2020 present was canceled due to the pandemic, Kidd, who has supervised student designers considering the fact that 1997, opted for image shoots in spring 2021.

This 12 months, there will be reveals of pupil do the job in the University student Center’s J.W. Corker Lounge and Ballroom C beginning at 6 p.m., together with pupils from trend merchandising, trend styling and interior designers. The clearly show is cost-free and open to the public.

The runway trend present begins at 7 p.m., with five initial-yr college students who will every present a style and design titled, Dressed for Influence. Those learners, with hometowns, are:

  • Carbondale: Nicole Robinson.
  • Chicago: Aniya Vaughns.
  • Herrin: Aaron Elliot.
  • South Elgin: Lisa Vasilopolous.

Two advanced college students will existing style patterns as section of a miniline selection. People learners, with hometowns and line, are:

  • Carbondale: Ingrid Hansen, Gothic Ladies, a line of female gothic looks motivated by Victorian vogue and embellishments.
  • Elgin: Caroline Chwalisz, Sweet Pea Classic, a simple and feminine line utilizing warm autumn colors encouraged by 1940s women’s fashions.

The program is set to undertake a title adjust to trend studies starting July 1, which Kidd claimed will improved mirror its offerings. It will manage its 3 specializations in fashion designvogue merchandising and style styling

For far more facts on the manner style software, make contact with Kidd at 618-453-1970 or [email protected]



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