KSU incorporates skating, religion into designs

Photo courtesy of Kyle Fleming Photography.

Photo courtesy of Kyle Fleming Photography.

Skye McEowen

While students at Kent State trudged through snow and cold last week, one student spent a few days in Tampa, Florida to showcase her collection on a runway.

Kirsten Warner, a senior fashion design major, traveled to Florida from Wednesday through Saturday where she participated in Christian Fashion Week, a show devoted to representing fashion from a Christian worldview, including modesty, boldness and integrity.

“It was really an amazing opportunity,” Warner said. “It was kind of my first real show.”

As one of 11 designers in the show, Warner pulled from different themes as she began to prepare her collection, which was a 10-piece debut of OnePrize Performance, Warner’s new company for activewear.

“I started it last August,” Warner said. “I started sketching even earlier than that, but in August we started with the designs; we started with the pattern-making. First muslin samples, second muslin samples. And then I’ve been making pieces right up until I left.”

 Warner said her inspiration stemmed from technology enhancing the body. 

“Basically I came from the perspective of anything that I wish was in my clothes when I’m skating, I was putting that into my design,” Warren said.

Christian Fashion Week is set apart from the Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week in New York, even though both are a way for designers to showcase their collections,

“It was taking local talent and finding other talent to come together.” Warner said. “What they really wanted to do was to have a show from a Christian perspective and a Christian worldview. It didn’t mean all the designers and models weren’t Christian necessarily.”

Christian Fashion Week also maintains standards in modesty, while supporting ethical labor and hiring practices. Some companies in the show also support causes like preventing human trafficking, Warner said.

“This year, our goal is to have a presence for those who can’t speak for themselves,” said Jose Gomez, the executive director of Christian Fashion Week in a recording of the 2015 runway show on their website.

Along with the Christian standards of the show, Warner also lets her faith influence her work.

“I have a passion for creating and designing and that kind of is God-given. I have the perspective that whatever we’re doing, it should be for the Lord and not for man,” Warner said. “Whatever you’re doing you should be doing, with all your heart.”

After she graduates this May, Warner hopes to continue with OnePrize Performance. She also plans to design with Macy’s, Inc.

Contact Skye McEowen at [email protected].