Fashion Group President senior Jessica Nelson introduced this year’s fashion show as something a little different.
“We’re doing something we’ve never done before that we think will really add value to the show,” Nelson said. “We’re also incorporating looks from design and merchandising students.”
On Saturday night, SPU’s student-run Fashion Group hosted their annual fashion show in Upper Gwinn, showcasing designs by students from the clothing and textiles major. This year’s show explored the progression of fashion and music through the decades. The title, “Zeitgeist,” means “spirit of the times,” reflecting the central theme.
The show consisted of four sets, each depicting a unique fashion era. Members of the Fashion Group modeled the designs, strolling across the wide stage, which was decorated with paper clocks.
Two DJs sat at a table at center stage providing musical context to the shifting periods.
Set One explored the greatest length of time, the 1500s-1990s. A soothing oriental electronic beat melded into Vampire Weekend’s “Step.” The initial designs were reminiscent of colonial British garb, including a red velvet tailcoat as well as oriental dresses.
A bee-bop era ‘50s tune blended into Elvis Presley’s “Heartbreak Hotel,” signaling the transition into the 1950s. Some of the designs took an absurd glance at the decade, including a white zippered vest with sharply pointed shoulders and a dress covered in pictures of cheeseburgers.
Set Two examined modern-futuristic fashion, kicking off with “Turn Down For What” by DJ Snake & Lil John, which soon drifted into Lorde’s “Team.” The initial designs featured black and white geometric patterns and optical illusions. The looks gradually became more minimalistic: black dresses with gold or silver accents. One of the final designs of the set was a dark coat with a full ninja hood and mask.
A minor “wardrobe malfunction” occurred toward the end of this set when a billowy robe slipped from the model’s shoulder, momentarily revealing her chest. The incident happened at the far side of the stage, prompting minimal audience reaction.
Between each set, video interviews with the designers played on the side screens.
Set Three consisted of a unified collection of kidswear designed by senior Reina Acab. Children modeled the minimalistic designs, which consisted of dark, urban apparel such as beanies and tank tops. Two boys paused at center stage to strike a pose, eliciting cheers. However, the pair forgot to continue their walk and had to be coaxed off stage by members of the design team.
The fourth set explored the 1920s through futuristic fashion styles. This set contained iconic trends, such as greaser and hippie. It began with a dapper glance at the 1920s, and transitioned into the pomp of the ‘50s greaser era. Bow-ties and suspenders abounded. This section featured the only coordinated couple in the sequence, who posed together at center stage, modeling Grease-esque ‘50s designs.
The soundtrack merged a jazzy intro into the Beatles’ “I Want to Hold Your Hand,” which then blended into the Bee Gees’ “Stayin’ Alive.” As the designs progressed into the late ‘60s and ‘70s, the color palette contained more pastels and primary colors, along with a number of flowery headbands. Two large felt overcoats made their way across the stage, one solid blue, the other yellow, both with floral dresses beneath.
“Pumped Up Kicks” by Foster the People signaled the shift into the futuristic portion of the section, which featured sleek designs that were often minimalistic, had floral print accents and accessorized with primary colors.
The show concluded with a final procession of all the models in rapped succession to the song “Get Lucky” by Daft Punk. Nelson returned to the stage to deliver the final thanks before the models posed for photos with audience members.