Kent State student shines at Massillon Museum

Photo by Audrey Mifsud.

Photo by Audrey Mifsud.

Danielle DeBord

The Massillon Museum’s exhibit “Take a Look at the New Look” is meant to take you back to Dior’s New Look of 1947; that’s exactly what Audrey Mifsud, senior fashion design major, strived to do with her black gown.

“That is where I pulled my inspiration, but I put my own look in it,” Mifsud said.

In the 1930s everything in France had to be rationed, including fabric. Dior wanted to bring back the look of femininity to women after going through all this and created New Look, said Heather Haden, Massillon Museum curatorial intern.

In addition to the garments in “Take a Look at the New Look,” the Massillon Museum held a competition for three new pieces — from current designers. Mifsud’s design was one of the three chosen, with Kent State fashion design students receiving the other two spots.

As the exhibit opened, the three pieces were judged further, with the winner receiving a permanent spot in the museum. Mifsud’s gown impressed guest curator Steven Rosengard and fellow judges Carmen Webber and Valerie Mayen — all three of whom competed in “Project Runway.”

The public voted on the final garment on opening day of the exhibit and ultimately chose Mifsud’s design.

Mifsud transferred to Kent State from Northern Michigan University, where she obtained a background in product design. Because she hadn’t yet taken a patternmaking class, Mifsud said she counted on her other design experiences.

“This really brought a different interest because I’ve never done gowns before,” Mifsud said.

Haden said it was an advantage for Mifsud to work through making the garment without some of the necessary knowledge. When she does take the pattern making class it will benefit her, said Haden.

“To make these shapes without patternmaking — it’s a testament to her talent,” Haden said.

During the competition, Haden served as the liaison between the competitors at Kent State, judges of the competition and the museum.

Mifsud said she talked with Mayen, who has a design studio in Cleveland, about the possibility of receiving an internship in the future.

The “Take a Look at the New Look” exhibit will be open until April 1. However, Mifsud’s garment will be placed into the permanent collection once the exhibit is closed.

Contact Danielle DeBord at [email protected].