Marion Made Fashion Show
Sponsored by: Marion Cinema House (Marion Design Co.), Community Foundation of Grant County, Tim and Mary Eckerle, and the Quilter’s Hall of Fame.
Location: Washington Street Alley, Downtown Marion, IN
MARION, INDIANA, June 4, 2018 ‒ A never seen before event called Marion Made Fashion Show in downtown Marion was a huge success! People spilled out of the “standing room only” Washington Street alley onto the sidewalks on the square on the night of Friday, June 29th. The alley, staged as a fashion runway was decked with a staged backdrop of digital motion, a long aisle flanked by two rows of seats on either side, fine food served on bamboo plates, and lemonade hand sealed in brown bottles to a modern, vibrant atmosphere. This is a prime display of creative placemaking designed to gather a diverse community of people together for fun and celebration, says Wendy Puffer, Chief Placemaking Design Officer of Marion Design Co.
Marion Design Co. hosted several activities leading up to the success of the fashion extravaganza. It began on June 8th with a Marion Cinema House screening of the documentary film called The True Cost. The film (now available on Netflix) addresses human rights and environmental factors challenged by fast fashion, the industries answer to making clothes as fast as possible to meet the consumers demand for cheap but fashionable clothing.
The following week, Marion Design Co. designers, Wildcat Art Academy high school students, The Quilter’s Hall of Fame, and other community members gathered at the MDC studio to assemble the donated clothing provided by individuals throughout the city into new, high fashion outfits. Volunteers from diverse parts of the city modeled the creations after being measured for shirts, pants, dresses, and jackets specially made for them.
The featured event on the 29th began with hors d’oeuvres and hand-bottled lemonade served while Luke Anspach, Co-founder of Marion Design Co., entertained the audience with his original acoustic music. Dr. Anneke Stasson, Assistant Professor of Humanities and History, introduced the crowd to the topic of fast fashion and the importance of sustainability. WBAT’s Tim George led the fashion show as MC as he announced the inspiration behind each outfit the 24 models displayed up and down the length of the alley runway. After Kristin Salate of Trace Fashions’ concluding comments, the top three outfits were awarded prizes. Judges were selected to score each outfit on Creativity, The Unexpected, Je ne sais quoi, and Particularity. The panel of judges included Tracy Lester, Linda Harmon, Anne Greeley, Bruce Campbell, Cathy and Bruce Weatherspoon, and Kristin Salate. In a surprise twist, the prizes were awarded to audience members who had corresponding numbers to the winners number hidden underneath their chairs.
“This was so much fun! Thank you for letting me a part of it,” said model Gail Robinson. “I had a great time!” said models Phil Bowers and Whitney Renfroe.
We’re already receiving requests to host this as an annual event. We’re thrilled that everyone had such a great time and so many people from the community came! said Yeabi Tabb (Design for Social Impact major, IWU and Marion Design Co. Placemaking Designer intern). We love this community and this event celebrated the great people who live here, said Grace Woodard (Graphic Design major, IWU, and Design Intern).
About Marion Design Co.
Marion Design Co. is a Community-based Creative Studio run by volunteer and professional designers. With a belief rooted in the power of design, our main purpose is to create solutions that propel and empower the people of Marion. We are a team prepared to take on urban renewal and revitalization, community branding, and identity.