Fashion School Store to display styles of Kent State


Garments and accessories that can bought at the Fashion School Store, as modeled by Michalea Neu for Fashion Blitz. Photo by Matt Hafley.

Danielle DeBord

The new styles of Kent are in Acorn Alley at the Fashion School Store, a student-run company by the students of the Kent State fashion school.

The Fashion School Store was proposed to the school in August of 2011. It’s been operating for about a month, but its grand opening will be Wednesday from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.

Scott Bunner is a junior fashion merchandising student and the student operations manager of the Fashion School Store. He applied for the position in October when the school began recruiting.

As the student operations manager, he is in charge of the store’s 20 volunteers, scheduling, and day-to-day management of the store, he said.

Bunner said he doesn’t do the buying for the store. Instead, the store’s director, Nancy Stanforth, picks the products to be sold.

“She has taught me a lot about inventorying the product,” Bunner said. “This is our retail lab, so it’s somewhere for merchandising students to gain managing experience and for students to share their work.”

The Fashion School Store has a higher price point than a mall store, Bunner said.

They’re trying not to be strictly one-of-a-kind pieces, Stanforth said. Prices range from $15 to $300.

“I came to Kent State with the dream to open my own store, and this project came out of nowhere,” Bunner said, “it was like a dream come true.”

Stanforth said they’re trying to reach all types of customers.

“We want to have sizes of things so you can find something you love, and it will be in your size,” Stanforth said.

She said the store’s garments are not focused on one season, and there is a constantly flow of new merchandise.

The T-shirts are just stock product from Dragonfly, Stanforth said. Students make most of the jewelry and accessories, and faculty and graduate alums designed most of the other products.

They made sure all the merchandise is in some way connected to the fashion school, Stanforth said. All of the pieces are bought from designers; only a few are donated.

“It’s really to show off what the fashion school is and what it could be,” she said.

This is a long-term process and finding people to produce is a job in itself, Stanforth said.

Bunner said even without the grand opening, the store has still been getting steady foot traffic on the weekends.

The grand opening will have a ribbon cutting by Mayor Jerry Fiala. The event is RSVP only for friends of the fashion school, donors and faculty. About 200 people are expected to attend.

The Fashion School Store is open Wednesday through Saturday. For the fall semester, the store is looking for Fashion School Volunteers. Contact [email protected] for more information.

Contact Danielle DeBord at [email protected].