MILWAUKEE — When COVID-19 shut the doors of Mount Mary university last year, students enrolled in the school of Art and Design struggled to complete their fashion collections.
"We had to learn how to create our home space into our workspace, which is a challenge," recalls Adia Kolell. "A lot of us didn't have access to sewing machines or proper equipment to finish our collection."
Aspiring fashion designer Adia Kolell, like many of her classmates, wanted a way to show off the collections they worked so hard on.
The pandemic forced fashion design students to forgo their annual fashion show and think outside the box.
"It was definitely a learning curve we were not sure what we were going to do," said senior Lydia Rogers.
With cell phones in hand fashion merchandising students became videographers. On an overcast Thursday, Lake State Park becomes a catwalk for student models. The end product a virtual fashion show.
"I feel so fulfilled with being a part of it and seeing my classmates put it together with us," said Adia Kolell.
The fashion students chose different locations around Milwaukee to showcase nearly 150 of their classmates' collections. Christina Lopez-Prado says the inspiration for her collection was an art wearable garment.
"I felt like a chemist, I had to mix some soda ash to make it go together. I wanted something that artist could wear, and it could get dirty, and it just makes it an interesting piece of art," said Christina Lopez-Prado.
Female designers are still in the minority in the fashion industry, though women's wear is a $165 billion industry. These young women hope their creations will be the next ready-to-wear collection.
"Mount Mary has given me the opportunity to finally accomplish my dreams," said Lopez-Prado.
To view virtual student designer fashion show, get tickets here.