Strutting on the cobblestone

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April 11, 2008

2:13 PM

Though the show is called Cobblestone Couture, the audience won’t find any models on Dog Street.

Instead, the third annual show, hosted by the Cobblestone Couture Fashion Club, will be held in the University Center Commonwealth Auditorium at 7:30 p.m. to showcase the fashions of five student designers.

“The show is basically run by students and features student models, designers and students interested in advertising,” Co-president Lana Shahmoradian ’08 said. “It’s a big show by students interested in all aspects of the fashion industry.”

The club was founded two years ago by Elizabeth Moore ’07, who, according to Co-president Schuyler Lolly ’09, wanted to give students an opportunity to showcase their designs and celebrate their artistry.

Shahmoradian agreed that the show was created not only to provide an outlet for student creativity, but also to send a message to those outside of the College.

“We’re trying to show that there is a fashion scene here, even though it’s not that loud,” she said. “I heard from somewhere that William and Mary got listed as one of the least fashionable schools, or that people here are the least involved in making an effort to look good. We want to convey the message that we have students interested in fashion; we’re not just a bunch of nerds.”

As part of the effort to express creativity, the club will also be hosting an after-party in Lodge 1 immediately following the show. The after-party is a new concept for the club this year and will function as a meet-and-greet for the public with the models and designers.

“There will be a DJ and a bar, and people can talk to the designers about their lines,” designer Katie Moore ’11 said.

Also new this year, the club will host a clothing drive for local charities. In lieu of an admission fee, Cobblestone Couture requests that guests bring at least five pieces of clothing to donate.

“Through the clothing drive, Cobblestone Couture hopes to not only gather the public to support a student effort, but a community one as well,” Lolly said.

The club reached out to the community outside of the College by teaming up with Binns Fashion Shop and assisting them with their fashion show. In return, Binns sponsored a full-page ad in the local newspaper promoting Cobblestone Couture.

Many of the designers also went beyond Williamsburg to search for materials and inspiration for their designs.

“Almost all of my fabric I got over spring break in New York,” Moore said. “Each piece is inspired by something completely different, from paper boys to glitter-grunge to Japan. I tried to keep it unified by the idea of making clothes that were classy but with an edge.”

Other designers, such as Nazrin Roberson ’08, also found materials from shops in New York. She used vintage ’60s and ’70s material found in an old store in her hometown and other fabrics handed down from family members. Her line comprises 10 dresses, mostly casual, which she described as slightly bohemian and all made for real women.

While not all the designers’ clothing lines have a specific theme, Shahmoradian’s fashion collection, called Heavy Metal Unicorns, takes just such an approach.

“It’s the same from last year, sort of punkish 80s and flashy and metallic, but it is also feminine, as in feminine colors,” Shahmoradian said. “I love the design process actually — I like just sitting and listening to music and coming up with crazy ideas. The tedious part is actually making it.”

Although some of the designers are veterans of the show, this will be the first year for others. Ariel Huberts ’09 was a model in last year’s show, but this year she decided to design her own line of clothing.

“I went to the model casting call last year because it sounded like fun,” Huberts said. “What girl doesn’t want to be a runway model?”
Despite being a novice at design and construction, she will present eight outfits tonight, including dresses, skirts and one menswear outfit. As an art history major, she tried to incorporate some of her inspirations — art, paint and colors — into her looks.

“[My collection] is sort of messy and artsy, less focus on the finish — more on the colors and textures and the mood,” Huberts said. “They’re relaxed, funky, slightly messy, but fun and imaginative.”
With so many different designers, there will be plenty of variety among the collections. Each designer sewed his or her own pieces, so each will be unique.

“We’re not just a trend show,” Shahmoradian said. “A lot of places just have trend shows where the clothing is store-bought, but all of our stuff is handmade.”

The show will run from 7:30 to 9 p.m. tonight. Tickets are $3 or a donation of five pieces of gently used clothing to benefit the clothing drive. An after party in Lodge 1 directly following the show will feature a bar and DJs Issamu Kamide from the University of Virginia and Nolan Chao ’11.

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