Art Institute of California-Hollywood hosted its annual fashion show on Saturday October 13th. The theme for the evening was The Body Politic in which 9 student designers chose various political themes ranging from national, global, or historic, as inspiration for their collections. The event was open he public with proceeds benefitting The Miguel Rocha Jr. Scholarship Fund, which was set up in honor of a former A.I. student who was the casualty of a drunk hit-and-run incident in 2008.
Before the show started guests enjoyed appetizers prepared by the Culinary Arts and Culinary Management Students in the V.I.P. lounge. Los Osuna provided shots of their organic tequila and wine was courtesy of Wine Growers of Dry Creek Valley. Non-alcoholic beverages were provided by Coco Café, Java Monster, and Activate.
I spotted this very fashionable gal in the VIP area. Turns out she is a designer and was here as a guest judge.
The fashion show was held on the roof of the parking garage adjacent to the school. It was a beautiful, warm night and the view was stunning. Needless to say I was a bit surprised when I say my friend Joshua Pinkay on the runway announcing the start of the show. Joshua graduated from A.I. with a degree in Fashion Marketing and now he is the events and merchandise manager for B. by Aperire shoes. Joshua is a natural in front of a crowd and he entertained us by doing a little strut down the catwalk.
The show began with a presentation by a few graduate designers. One of which was Cindy Gellersen of Bagstil and BITS. I have followed Cindy’s career since meeting her at the Grammy Style Studio a few years ago, so I was honored that she invited me to her big event at her alma mater. I have seen Cindy’s creations up close. They are striking and the craftsmanship is superb but seeing them on the runway gave them a whole new life. Her handbags, saddle bags, and cuffs looked fabulous on the models and I was really impressed with how fashionable her riding chaps are.
It’s a known fact that nothing steals the show more than little kids on the catwalk and the models for Sara Caterinicchia’s Who’s Little label immediately won the crowd over. Sara creates special occasion children’s wear and her line is comprised of three special occasion collections: I Am! For ages 0 – 14 months. Who’s Little for girls between the ages of 2 – 6 years old and Not Me! For 7 – 10 year olds.
Dominique Ansari graduated with honors from A.I. in 2008. After interning for the likes of XOXO and Ximena, Valero she launched her own line, which specializes in comfort couture. You’ll find a variety of dresses, rompers, jumpsuits, and swimwear on her website but Dominique also makes custom pieces and gowns for the red carpet.
After the alumni designer presentations a professional dance crew came out and entertained the crowd before the student designers sent their looks down the runway.
The first to present was Tameru Logbicho. His collection consisted of deconstructed t-shirts, that were donated by AIDS Project Los Angeles, which represented the theme of equality for all.
Brooke Belden sent architecturally inspired pieces based in grey and red down the runway.
Josue Beltran specializes in menswear. His collection featured a number of versatile jackets that can be worn long sleeved or sleeveless.
Jacqueline Cuellar sent a variety of looks down the runway.
Brent Bryant’s collection exhibited a bit of Southern Decadence. Models wore fancy fascinators and a number of the gowns were accentuated with pearl straps.
The theme of Arianna Moultrie’s collection was Blood Diamonds. She sent a number of colorful and culturally inspired garments down the runway.
Amber Martinez’ collection was inspired by the recent recession and was titled Riches to Rags.
Brooke Baird presented a number of casual menswear looks.
Juancarlos Fabian Zepeda closed out the show with a grand presentation of beautiful gowns and flirty dresses.
After the presentation Aleta Campbell (Academic Director of Fashion Design) and Nicole Dwyer (Academic Director of Fashion Marketing and Management) presented two students with the Miguel Rocha Jr. Scholarship and one of the recipients was Arianna Moultrie.
Narrative and photos by Nikki Neil