Catwalk couture

Amanda Sowards

Student fashions ‘Rock the Runway’ in Student Center Ballroom

Jennifer Kennedy, junior business major, poses for Laurie Allen’s line “Jack’s Manequin (Cancer Awareness)” during Rock the Runway last night in the Student Center Ballroom. AMANDA SOWARDS | DAILY KENT STATER

Credit: Carl Schierhorn

Tulle, leather and hairspray were everywhere, and students scrambled to get their garments finished on time. Student designers and models crammed into corners, against walls and cluttered around every source of light available in the underexposed backstage of the Student Center Ballroom.

Such was the scene an hour before Rock the Runway last night, cosponsored by the Fashion Student Organization and Kent Student Center Programming.

After a quick dress rehearsal and a few minor stumbles on the runway, the show was ready to start. By 8 p.m., the roundtable and upholstered chairs that once sat empty on the ballroom floor were full, and observers lined the back wall.

The theme of the night was music. The show opened to a Jessica Simpson tune, and the first model from Mary Degen and Mariana Bowling’s “Tickling the Ivories” collection walked onto the stage.

The show continued in the same fashion, featuring music from David Bowie, Ace of Base and Ricky Martin and clothing to fit it.

About an hour later, all 68 designs had been modeled, and three judges were tallying the scores to pick the first- and second-place winners. Sydney Sustarsic, sophomore fashion design major, took first place with her “Mechanized Decay” line and second went to Meena Osei-Kuffour, junior marketing major, for her “Back to Being Classy” designs.

“I wanted something that wasn’t me,” Sustarsic said of the robotic-techno music she chose for her models to walk to.

For Osei-Kuffour, the music came after the clothing. She said she wanted something sexy and classic and, when she heard her song, it fit perfectly.

The judges rated the pieces on cohesiveness, creativity and construction, said Jessica Phillips, judge and junior fashion design and merchandising major.

“We also looked to see if they made the garment from scratch or doctored it up,” she said.

The second annual Rock the Runway was very successful according to Logan Sommers, founder and senior visual journalism major.

“Our goal was to exceed what we did last year and make it bigger and better, and we did that,” Sommers said.

Rock the Runway was started because of his interest in fashion and desire to have an event for anyone who was interested. Sommers said he felt the music theme this year made the show more cohesive than last year’s show, which had no theme.

Contact fashion reporter Amanda Sowards at [email protected].