Apparel | Thursday, September 06, 2012
Supima’s 5th Annual Design Competition at MBFW
By Marc Lewkowitz
CONGRATULATIONS TO KATE WILKOFF THE 2012 WINNER OF SUPIMA’S 5TH ANNUAL DESIGN COMPETITION
On September 6, Supima hosted the fifth annual Supima Design Competition in New York during the Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week and crowned Kate Wilkoff from Pratt in New York, the grand prize winner!
A hotly contested fashion show between eight designers and a total of 40 unique one-of-a-kind designs, all made with Supima fabrics, kept the packed Studio in the Lincoln Center of over 400 attendees on the edge of their seats. Each design, one after another, impressed the judges with the creative direction taken with Supima fabrics in denim, corduroy, twill, shirting fabric or a knit fabric.
A prestigious panel of five judges that included CEO of Moda Operandi, Aslaug Magnusdottir, Executive Editor of Harper’s Bazaar, Kristina O’Neill, fashion designer Tadashi Shoji, InStyle Fashion Director, Cindy Weber-Cleary, Gilt Groupe founder Alexandra Wilkis Wilson and Vice President of Marketing for Supima, Buxton Midyette were gathered together to carefully inspect and evaluate each individual design and then choose one of the designers as the grand prize winner to be awarded a $10,000 cash prize.
Kate Wilkoff from Pratt was chosen to be this year’s winner out of the eight finalists that included Fashion Institute of Technology’s Yvonne Luong and Kyle Pearson; Pratt’s other finalist Meredith Lyon; Rhode Island School of Design’s Abigail Glass and Jacqueline Siefert; Savannah College of Art and Design’s Eduardo Calvo and Natalia Yepes.
All forty of the designs entered into the competition dazzled the excited audience one after another. Each of the five stunning designs by designer are featured below along with each designer’s bio. To see first hand all the excitement around the event, a video of the fashion show is available below.
MEET THE WINNER AND FINALISTS
Kate Wilkoff - PRATT - WINNER
Cabin John, Maryland native Kate Wilkoff experienced the design processes at a young age by teaching herself how to use a sewing machine. The self-taught designer’s work has been featured in several online blogs and she has participated in both the Pratt Institute’s Fashion Society and the Goldsmith Inc. Cocktail Dress Design Competition. She graduated from the Pratt Institute with a BFA in Fashion Design in May of 2012. Through years of honing her design skills, Wilkoff identifies herself as an eveningwear designer with a focus on embroidery and textile manipulation. Wilkoff aspires to start her own eveningwear company, and she believes the Supima Design Competition will set her on the trajectory of achieving that goal. Her Supima capsule collection is inspired by the aurora borealis and the night sky. Her faculty mentor for the Supima Design Competition is Robin Mollicone.
Yvonne Luong - FIT
Madison, Wisconsin native Yvonne Luong graduated Magna Cum Laude in May of 2012 from the Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT) with a BFA in Fashion Design and a specialization in Special Occasion. Unlike many of this year’s finalists, Luong’s early design inspiration came from her favorite anime series Sailor Moon. Sharpening her skills, Luong specializes in eveningwear and hopes to one day “Make and drape one-of-a-kind dresses and at the same time not starve.” The inspiration for her Supima capsule collection comes from the Aurora Borealis and is an exploration of creating art through coloring techniques and fabric manipulation. Luong’s faculty mentors for the Supima Design Competition are Ruben Cruz and Lisa Donofrio-Ferrez.
Kyle Pearson - FIT
Easton, Connecticut native Kyle Phillip Edmund Pearson graduated Magna Cum Laude in May of 2012 from the Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT) with a BFA in Fashion Design and a specialization in eveningwear and bridal. Pearson’s specialty is the art of corsetry and corset construction, and he hopes to one day own a patternmaking studio where he can collaborate with designers to “Turn their two-dimensional visions into three-dimensional realities.” Pearson won the 2011 Curator’s Choice award in the Shelbourn Museum’s ‘Complete the Look’ contest and says his inspiration for the Supima capsule collection comes from what he sees as a shift in global power from Western to Eastern society. Pearson’s faculty mentors for the Supima Design Competition are Ruben Cruz and Lisa Donofrio-Ferrez.
Meredith Lyon - PRATT
Massachusetts native Meredith Lyon found inspiration for her Supima capsule collection from the beauty found in the “birds and bird ladies that reside in New York parks and streets.” Finding inspiration from unexpected places has helped Lyon earn several accomplishments. During her time at Pratt Institute, Lyon placed second in the Pucci + Pratt and Paper Competition and participated in the 2011 Bowie Ball where she designed a look based on a mash-up of several designers. She specializes in women’s sportswear with an emphasis on designing separates and dresses with basic silhouettes. Her goal, after having graduated from the Pratt Institute, is to start her own clothing line with a style that will “Inject some much needed humor into the fashion industry.” Her faculty mentor for the Supima Design Competition is Robin Mollicone.
Abigail Glass - RISD
Atlanta, Georgia native Abbey Glass has been sewing ever since her grandmother introduced her to a sewing machine at the age of 10. Years later, Glass took her childhood fascination with sewing and apparel design and elevated her skillset through school and various fashion projects. For example, Glass has participated in the Club Moda Benefit Fashion Show for Jane Fonda’s G-CAPP foundation and received two honorary scholarships from the Rhode Island School of Design (RISD). She graduated with a BFA in Apparel Design in May of 2012. Her style is self-described as “Classic American” with a “Sporty and geeky edge.” Glass hopes to start a high-end design company and believes that the Supima Design Competition will help achieve that dream. Glass plans to use desert pastel colors, western tailoring and inspirations from a recent trip through the beautiful state of Idaho to create her Supima capsule collection. Her faculty mentor for the Supima Design Competition is Margaret DeCubellis.
Jacqueline Siefert - RISD
Naugatuck, Connecticut native Jacqueline Siefert graduated in May of 2012 with a BFA in Apparel Design and a Concentration in History of Visual Art and Culture from the Rhode Island School of Design (RISD). Seifert’s hard work earned her several scholarships including the Joan K. Herron Scholarship, Apparel Design Scholarship and Raul L. Lovett Scholarship. While at RISD, Siefert honed her skills in high-end women’s sportswear and eveningwear, both of which she feels best allow her to showcase couture techniques and hand finishes. Seifert hopes to one day have a job designing at a major fashion house, such as Balmain, and she sees the Supima Design Competition as a pivotal part of her career. Siefert’s inspiration for her Supima capsule collection came from a mixture of natural structures and baroque elements of the Piazza Navona in Rome. Her faculty mentor for the Supima Design Competition is Margaret DeCubellis.
Eduardo Calvo - SCAD
Madrid, Spain native Eduardo Labohemia Calvo aims for his Supima capsule collection to “Embody elegance and femininity” without “Superfluous bells and whistles.” Calvo’s fashion perspective and vision helped him win the coveted, Lifetime’s Project Runway Scholarship Design Competition where he designed a couture candy garment for Dylan’s Candy Bar in New York City. Calvo specializes in women’s outerwear and is graduating with a Fashion Design Major and Business Minor from the Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD). His dream job is to be a creative director for a high-profile fashion house such as Balenciaga or Burberry. His faculty mentor for the Supima Design Competition is Sachiko Honda.
Natalia Yepes - SCAD
Pereira, Colombia native Natalia Yepes started her sewing career using fabric scraps to make clothing for her dolls. Since then, Yepes has gone on to receive numerous awards, including the Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD) Style Lab Mentorship in 2011 and 2012, the SCAD Etoile Award in May of 2012 and the 2012 SCAD Seen In Award. She graduated from SCAD with a BFA in Fashion Design, and specialized in the women’s ready-to-wear category. She hopes to start her own line after training under a well-known designer, and she feels that the Supima Design Competition is the first step toward that goal. Yepes’ Supima capsule collection is inspired by architecture and will include her hallmark details such as embroidery, beading and fabric painting and printing. Her faculty mentor for the Supima Design Competition is Jason Brunin.