Kent Fashion School Store sells something special for the holiday season

Alicia Crabtree

The Kent Fashion School Store is celebrating its first holiday shopping season with exclusive pieces and special designs made specifically for Kent students.

Emma Steinker, the Kent Fashion School Store manager, believes the store is carving out its niche this holiday season by creating a meaningful experience for each customer that walks through the door.

“By telling [the garments’] stories, we create a connection between consumer and product and give the item value,” Steinker said. “The value of the item is what we strive to get across to our customers so they appreciate the craftsmanship and detailing as much as we do. At a retail store in a mall, you typically don’t get that kind of experience.”

While Steinker explained that most every item in the store is one of a kind, there are still a few top sellers for the holidays.

“We constantly sell through our American Apparel merchandise monogrammed with ‘The Fashion School, Kent State University,’” Steinker said. “They are great basics that display pride for the program.”

The store’s graphic tees, said Steinker, have been successful and are expected to be popular this season.

“The graphic tees are a very exciting endeavor for us,” Steinker said. “Each print is essentially a limited edition student-made design.”

Steinker said that pieces from the new vintage-movie collection would be perfect as a holiday gift.

“The new vintage line is fabulous,” Steinker said. “The pieces are so diverse and bring a lot of character to the store. Some garments are very old-Hollywood glamour, and others are a little more versatile and casual. Each piece is very luxurious, made of high-quality materials and intricately detailed.”

Melissa Surman, assistant manager of the Kent Fashion School Store, said she’s most looking forward to new customers this holiday season.

“We’ve been marketing the store a lot more than we did before,” Surman said. “We have more social-media usage, more articles being written. We want to see what sells best to see what we can do differently for next year. I look forward to seeing what the customers take to the most.”

Surman said that the main draw of the store is its ability to create a unique and personalized experience.

“You never know what you’re going to find here,” Surman said. “We always have new products coming in and new students with their own items like jewelry and clothing. We have an array of products, from student-made pieces to alumni pieces to faculty pieces.”

Steinker said she’s most excited for the increased foot traffic and exposure the store will receive this season.

“We love meeting new people in the community and sharing our story with them,” Steinker said. “We’re looking forward to hopefully giving our customers the perfect holiday gifts this year.”

Contact Alicia Crabtree at [email protected].