Re-WireNXT students end summer program with fashion week

Olivia Ivaldi, a high school intern, was in charge of the Student Atelier’s fashion week.

Olivia Ivaldi, a high school intern, was in charge of the Student Atelier’s fashion week.

The works of Chanel, Alexander McQueen, Thom Browne, Alexander Wang and Marc Jacobs were the inspiration for the Re-WireNXT Student Atelier’s fashion week.

Each week of Re-WireNXT’s summer Student Atelier has a focus in which the middle and elementary school interns explore concepts related to the Gilbert & Bennett Wire Mill site. Cross-pollination of ideas is encouraged between each vertical: Transportation, Ecology, Architecture, Environmental Remediation/Green Energies, Food/Hospitality/Farming, and Fashion/Art.

Re-WireNXT Student Atelier principals welcomed their middle and elementary school interns with a survey of iconic fashion designers who have helped define fashion trends today.

One of the Student Atelier members modeling a design during the program’s fashion and art-inspired week.

One of the Student Atelier members modeling a design during the program’s fashion and art-inspired week.

Atelier interns studied specific styles of each designer and incorporated various aspects into their own designs. The interns were quick to give feedback on the designs presented, and the principals also prompted them to think about reasons why each designer made certain choices in their outfits. The atelier discussed how important it is to make specific choices in their designs. After the students saw how designers incorporated themes into their clothing, they were challenged to draw their own themed designs, using ideas from a brainstorm about their favorite part of Connecticut.

Several student atelier principals visited the exhibition “Charles James Beyond Fashion,” recently on view at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, NYC. All of James’ dresses were highly structured, in part due to his training as a milliner, and the atelier looked to him as inspiration while constructing our own designs.

Sustainability in fashion was also a focus. Interns were asked to consider the impact of where materials used in clothing and accessories are sourced.

The interns were curious about the connection between fashion week and the Gilbert & Bennett Wire Mill redevelopment. The group discussed how fashion incubators nurture new design talent and imagined young designers working locally in Georgetown. To have up-and-coming designers growing their businesses nearby would provide opportunities for students in the area who are interested in fashion to learn about the industry with a budding entrepreneur.

After developing their own ideas by sketching outfits, the interns, assisted by Re-WireNXT principals, brought their ideas to life cutting and sewing their own Connecticut-themed designs. The eight interns each created an outfit for themselves, which they modeled to the community on Friday, Aug. 8, in the One Day Runway.

Throughout this summer the Re-WireNXT Student Atelier interns have proven their incredible skills in understanding the world around them and creating new and innovative designs. Fashion week was a fantastic final week to the summer program, and each intern got to show off a bit of their personality in their outfits as well as learn new skills, like sewing. Each outfit was unique and expressive of all the things that the interns, and we, love about Connecticut and our local community.

Re-WireNXT Student Atelier is funded by the Connecticut Trust for Historic Preservation, Redding Education Foundation, and Fairfield County Bank, and is sponsored by Artspire, a program of the New York Foundation for the Arts.

For more information, contact us at rewireheadqu[email protected]

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