Rock the Runway to showcase ‘hip-hop house party’ fashion

A model prepares to walk at 2012’s Rock The Runway, Celestial Space Odyssey, on March 10, 2012. This year’s Rock The Runway will be “Hip-Hop House Party” themed, this Saturday, March 9 in the student center ballroom from 8:00-11:00 p.m. Photo by Philip Botta.

Morgan Jupina

Nearly 1,000 audience members will fill the Kent Student Center ballroom Saturday at 8 p.m. to watch the much-anticipated Rock the Runway fashion show hosted by Kent State’s Center for Student Involvement.

Runway looks from designers of all majors, who were required to apply, will be featured in the ninth annual competition.

Jennifer Gunnoe, interim associate director for CSI, said the theme of the event each year is based off of a musical genre. This year’s theme is “hip-hop house party.”

“DJ Bandcamp will spin tunes,” Gunnoe said, “and rappers and vocalists will perform old-school hip-hop live during the show.”

Designer Shiyao Peng, a sophomore fashion design major, said she is looking forward to being a part of the event.

“I think Rock the Runway is the most exciting show in Kent,” Peng said. “I thought I would love to design some wonderful pieces for it.”

Peng said she plans to modernize the theme in her garments.

“I am using black leather and mixing it with bright colored fabric,” Peng said. “I’m modernizing the old hip-hop look but not losing the elements of the ‘90s.”

Peng chose her model Sarah Pohan, a junior fashion merchandising major, after seeing her in many other fashion shows at Kent.

Pohan said CSI always goes all out on this show and is excited to be a part of it.

“I’m looking forward to seeing all the different designs,” Pohan said. “With the theme being hip-hop, there’s a lot of room for creativity.”

Gunnoe said four judges with an expertise in fashion or music will sit on the panel. She said judges will look for cohesiveness of the designer’s line, craftsmanship and the incorporation of the hip-hop theme.

The audience will also be able to text a number and chose an audience choice winner, who will receive a different prize from the judges.

“It takes a lot of effort but it’s a great learning experience,” Gunnoe said. “There are always opportunities for all different types of students to get involved and potentially build their resume.”

Contact Morgan Jupina at [email protected].