IIDA Fashion Show Delights and Inspires All in Attendance

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IIDA Fashion Show Delights and Inspires All in Attendance

Wall coverings pleated into skirts, bodices made from ceramic tiles, light bulbs perched on dramatic updos were a few of the fascinating, unconventional fashions created by local design firms and colleges, which impressed and entertained everyone in attendance at the 20th annual IIDA Fashion Show last Thursday, including representatives from the companies who manufacture the materials.

“The teams are so clever,“ says Naomi Mancha, creative strategist at A.W. Hastings & Co. “I’m so impressed with how advanced and complex the designs are year after year.”  Her colleague, Marvin 7 Tide Brand Ambassador Rachael Backstrom, who liaised with the student design team at Wentworth Institute of Technology, says the creative process was somewhat secretive. “I knew what products we provided, but I was dying to see how they would use them,“ she says. “And they really exceeded my expectations!”

Heather Beland, marketing manager for Clarke Distribution, who worked with Suffolk University, agrees. “What talent! The students took very unconventional materials and truly showcased their creativity.” Elizabeth Ghiseline, an instructor with Suffolk’s Department of Art and Design, oversaw her college’s fashion team. “As soon as I heard our music—a version of the theme from ‘Orange is the New Black’—I was on the edge of my seat,” says Ghiseline. “Our two models just killed it. Their timing and attitude were great. I was blown away.”

The theme this year was Reflection, and for Mancha it was a pleasure to realize how the outfits showcased that concept. “Each team did an amazing job representing their interpretation of the theme,” she says.  

“I love to see how each team translates the theme into a wearable piece of art,” says Grace Labossiere of Reflex Lighting, a title sponsor of IIDA. Her company was not a materials provider this year, but they have been heavily involved with the fashion show for many years. “I’ve attended the event for several years now and have yet to see any two outfits that are alike!”

For all of the companies who sponsor and participate in the event, the IIDA show is an unparalleled opportunity to connect with the design community, support creativity and build relationships. Mancha also loves that it is a chance for the industry to explore their imaginations. “It’s a great evening where talents unite and creativity is at its highest,” she says. “It’s  fun to see your materials brought to life in a whole new way.” Backstrom felt captivated by the entire show: “I think I had a permanent smile on my face the entire time!”

Labossiere emphasizes that Reflex Lighting is always thrilled to be represented as a part of the Boston design community. “Clearly, we possess a tremendous amount of talent in this city!”