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Texas-Sized Student Fashion Show “Synthesis” Debuts Soon

Korean-inspired wedding dresses, camouflage leisure wear cut for women, ballerina dresses highlighted with programmable lights: this year's fashion show, Synthesis, builds on the designs of 22 textiles and apparel seniors from the University of Texas at Austin. The annual show, organized by the University Fashion Group, is the nation's largest fashion show at a university, attracting over 5,000 Texans to campus to see the collections, active wear, bridal gowns, and evening wear.

The show will begin at 7:15 p.m.on Wednesday, April 19, 2017 in the Frank Erwin Center. Admission is free and open to the public.

The event will be prefaced by a Textiles and Apparel student exhibition curated by faculty member Luisa Fandindo beginning at 5:30 p.m. in the Lone Star Room. This room will feature TXA students' activities, including the research and student design projects such as the Co-Op student design challenge and 29 Junior designer's design challenge.

"This year's show will feature a special collection in honor of the University Co-op, which is returning as a founding and title sponsor," says faculty member Ockhee Bego, Director of the UT Fashion Show. "The special collection of game day garments titled, 'Winning Season' is inspired by the University of Texas sport's fans."

The game day garments will be showcased in an exclusive segment during the fashion show. One of the lucky designers will get their garment featured at the Co-op's retail store and possibly mass manufactured for customers to purchase.

This year's senior design students have crafted over 120 individual pieces to make up a complete collection. When these independently fashioned pieces are integrated, a unified fashion show is born. Designers for "Synthesis" have created cutting-edge performance designs that include digital prints, programmable lights and performance fabrics.

To synthesize is to integrate separate entities to create something new, and as a family the design class has created relationships and connections that will stay with  them long after they depart UT.

In the last 18 years, the annual fashion show has grown from an audience of 500 in 1997 to over 5,000 in 2016. Shows in recent years were attended by Daniel Esquivel of 2013's season of Project Runway and Cameron Silver of Bravo TV's Dukes of Melrose. Brad Goreski of E!'s "Fashion Police" attended in 2012 tweeted to over 150,000 followers "Congratulations, the UT Fashion Show was fabulous!"

Students graduating with this degree study diverse subjects in science, business and design. They are required to excel in all courses gaining the full spectrum of skills necessary to prepare them for a career in the fashion industry. Notable employers of students current and past include Marc Jacobs, Alexander Wang, Ralph Lauren, Vera Wang, Zac Posen, Betsey Johnson, Brooks Brothers and Macy's to name a few.

"Design students are required to excel at the full spectrum courses ranging from science to design," says faculty member Jessica Ciarla, Director of Public Relations for UT Fashion Show. A panel of local industry professionals including Carla McDonald, Sergio Guadaramma, Leonardo D'Almagro, Leslie Russell, Liz Willis, Cheryl Bemis, Ashley Schwaegel, Patty Hoffpauir, Lance Avery Morgan, Linda Asaf and Carmel Fenves will award Most Innovative Fashion Collection, Most Marketable Fashion Collection, Best Technical Collection, Best Evening Gown, Best Bridal Gown and Best Overall Collection of 2017.

The University Co-operative Society will return as Founding and Title Sponsor of this year's show. Other sponsors are The Austin American-Statesman and Independence Title. Austin's own Ruiz will provide hair and makeup stylists for the models.

The event will be broadcast live on the Longhorn Network (LHN), which airs through Time Warner Cable, Verizon, Google Fiber, and AT&T Uverse.


What: UT Fashion Show 2017 'Synthesis'

When: Wednesday, April 19, 2017, Frank Erwin Center Fashion Alley (Concourse)

5:30 Student Exhibition (Lone Star Room) 7:15 Runway Show (Arena) 8:50 PRESS & DONORS ONLY meet the designers with models (Lone Star Room)

Attendance: Attendance is free and open to the public.

Special Press Tickets available on request.