Designing for Diversity



My name is Jessica Rush and I’m a fashion design major at Genesee Community College. I was raised in South Carolina but relocated to NY a few years ago. I’m in my last semester at GCC and it has been the most rewarding experience. My favorite color is yellow and I love Vogue India! After GCC I plan on moving to Italy, I just recently got accepted into my dream school Koefia Academy in Rome, Italy!


As a fashion student at GCC I’ve learned that fashion is more than what you see on the surface. But what I love most about fashion is that it isn’t limited. To me fashion is cultural, reaching across borders of the world to take inspiration from all over the globe to make something beautiful. To someone else it may be sleek and simple but the truth is it can be absolutely ANYTHING.


GCC will always have a very special place in my heart, not only because of all the opportunities I’ve gotten but because the institution wants you succeed in life not just at GCC. But as a GCC student I’ve participated in the 34th annual fashion show working for the Front of House and in the 35th Annual show as the Front of House project manager. I’m also a resident assistant for residence life, vice president for the Honor Society Phi Theta Kappa, president of the voices of Diversity organization, member of the diversity council, member of the Genesee Community College Association, student government and involved in other clubs/ organizations.


As a scene producer in this year’s fashion is….. show I wanted my scene to represent my brand. My brand focuses on beauty within different cultures. One of my dreams is to own a fashion magazine that celebrates women of all races, ethnicities, cultures and sizes. I also want to create a Haute Couture collection that specializes in global upscale and intricate garments for women.



“So early in my life I had learned that if you want something you better make some noise”


-Malcolm X





Also, If you would like to donate to my college abroad fund I added the link below !





Fashion: Think Beyond Just Clothing




What is fashion? There are no wrong answers, but many individuals I know consider fashion to just be about clothing and nothing really else. I would like to say to those individuals that fashion is just not about clothing. I myself, thought fashion was just about clothing before coming here (NY). Being from and raised in a small community in the middle of nowhere, fashion was considered a foreign concept that no one ever really understood. That is why this year’s theme for the 35th annual fashion show has intrigued me: “Fashion Is…”.

The day in class when we decided to have this as the theme, I was fascinated hearing what everyone thought fashion was to them. Everyone had their own perspective and opinions. They were all so different yet linked together with their love for fashion.

Even doing a quick Google search “Fashion Is…” there are many results. Fashion is architecture, freedom, a style of life, endless, a statement, about you, etc. were a few of the results I came across on Google.

Fashion can be related to things people might not even consider. Coco Chanel inspired me to look at fashion as architecture. “Fashion is architecture: it is a matter of proportions.” Architecture and fashion have a lot in common. Both the designer and architect use geometry to generate shapes, design lines, forms and to create structure.

This year, 16 fashion design and merchandising students have a scene in the 35th annual fashion show. Each one of their scenes will depict what fashion means to them. The scenes are so diverse, yet flow together.

My hope at this year’s fashion show, is that the guests will leave with new thoughts and opinions of what fashion is and can be.

-Kristi Knutson

Fashion Is A New Beginning


“From this day forward, you shall not walk alone. My heart will be your shelter, and my arms will be your home.”


“Fashion Is A New Beginning” is the name of the bridal scene at “Fashion is…” 35th Annual Fashion Show at Genesee Community College. I’m Jordan Reese, who is currently in the last semester at GCC, and will be graduating in May from the fashion program. I’m the coordinator of two scenes, “Fashion Is Bohemian Chic x Childrenswear” and this bridal scene.


Marriage should be the happiest day of your life. So is working on a bridal scene. People working with me and myself feel this bridal scene is the happiest scene ever. I’m glad that we’ve got wedding dresses from MA Carr Bridal in Orchard Park, and will get tuxedos from Tuxedo Junction at Eastern Hills Mall. Currently, I’m working with my assistant Yuhan (Bella) Lu and my 22 models from this scene. Male models are going to Tuxedo Junction with me these days to get professional measurement, and will be getting their tuxedos before the fashion show. Luckily, our female models already tried the wedding dresses on and found the dress they love.


Model Kilitta Johnson-Small


That moment when you find the dress


We will be having our multiple rehearsals soon. Marriage doesn’t have to be perfect to be beautiful, but the fashion show needs to be perfect to be shown for you. The models and I are very glad working on the bridal scene. A happy marriage is a new beginning of life. Hope you’ll see something positive in our bridal scene and our fashion show!


– Jordan Reese

Tea X Design = A Marvelous Achievement!



The Tea x Design event was an astounding success, with a record-breaking ninety people in attendance!  Professor Donna Ehrhart, the host of the event, spoke about her new brand, DenimDoll19.  Involved in this discussion was a brief overview of her history as a seamstress, her process of sewing, and how she created a brand identity. She outlined the importance of personal branding, professionalism, and the creative process. The event was catered by Harrington’s, a local café which sources its breads and other baked goods from Deb’s Bakery in Rochester.  Harrington’s also supplied the flowers used in the event, which were later raffled off, along with an official GCC plaid scarf.



The enchanting Professor Ehrhart as she prepares to speak.


Ehrhart originals styled by Miss Lauren Countryman.


Event Planning student extraordinaire Rachel Diel finalizing decorations. .


Courtney Shearer arranging the refreshments table.

image (14)

       This tea was the perfect way to honor the accomplishments of our wonderful Professor Ehrhart.  Her story is truly an inspiration for anyone that has any interest in the fashion world, or, in a broader sense, entrepreneurship.  The event was an unforgettable experience, and I hope the next Tea x Design is just as amazing. I’m sure, it will be!

From Brazil to New York, Fashion Is Everywhere!



My name is Hanna Tischer, I am from Brazil, and my major is Fashion Business: Merchandising. I was an exchange student in NYC in 2014, I studied English and Fashion at the same time, and after that, I knew that working with fashion is what I want to do for the rest of my life! I plan on transferring to LIM College after graduating from GCC and get my bachelor’s degree in Visual Merchandising with a minor in Styling. Hopefully after graduating from LIM I’ll find a job in the US at a store where I can work with visual merchandising and grow in my career becoming the visual merchandising department manager, and also be able to be a fashion stylist.

In this year’s Fashion Show “Fashion is…” I am the Scene Coordinator for the scene Masquerade. My inspiration came from the musical “The Phantom of the Opera”. Last year, the fashion students from GCC went to NYC for some fashion related visits; since we were there, my friends and I decided to watch a Broadway musical and we opted for the Phantom of the Opera. In this musical there is a scene called Masquerade where they have a ball with people dressed in costumes and masks. My idea was evolved from that, because I have a passion for evening gowns I decided to mix both features: Evening gowns and Masks! I have been working with Charles Men’s Shop in Batavia and Katherine Patricia in Rochester to provide the tuxedos and dresses for my scene. I am beyond excited for it, specially after I choose the dresses which are different from the ordinary and bring a pinch of couture to the scene. I haven’t heard about a scene like that from any of the past Fashion Shows at GCC, so I am bringing a new idea and uniqueness to the stage with a classic and mysterious touch!

See how Art influences the fashion world and be amazed by the styles presented in this year’s Fashion Show “Fashion is…”. And to wrap up this article I just want to give you a quote and make you reflect and be ready for the GCC Fashion Show:


‘Fashion is not something that exists in dresses only. Fashion is in the sky, in the street, fashion has to do with ideas, the way we live, what is happening.’

Coco Chanel

The Creativity Conference @ GCC





Wednesday, April 13, 2016 (8:15 am – 4 pm)



Keynote Speaker: Sandra Turner, CEO of Viggi Kids


To reach their potential, the 21st Century workforce needs the ability to think and solve problems creatively – to be innovative. The third annual Creativity Conference features hands-on workshops on how to apply design thinking and creative thinking strategies in the areas of Community, Business and Education (K-16). Seats limited! Register today!


Conference Schedule:

8:15 – 8:50 AM           Registration, Breakfast & Networking

8:50-9:00 AM            Welcome

9 – 9:50 AM                Sandra Turner, Keynote Address

10-10:50 AM              Workshops

11-11:50 AM               Workshops

12 – 1:20 PM              LUNCH

1:30 – 2:20 PM          Workshops

2:30 – 3:20 PM          Workshops

3:30 – 4:00 pm          Wrap Up



Seats are limited! Ready to get creative? Register today!


$99 per registrant
$25 per GCC Faculty, Staff, or Student registrant

Prices listed include breakfast, lunch, refreshments and conference materials.


A Sterling Example Of Craftsmanship



This year the GCC fashion program is celebrating 35 years of amazing fashion shows! Every year the event showcases the spectacular work done by the students in the program, but not once in 35 years, has there ever been an all jewelry scene in the fashion show. This year however, that all changes!I have the exciting opportunity to be able to be the first individual to have an all jewelry scene.


During the process for coming up with possible scenes for the fashion show, Professor Dudkowski had suggested an accessories scene and I thought that would be fun to do since it had never been done before. As the first semester progressed I thought about doing an all jewelry scene. In high school, I had taken many jewelry classes and I graduated with the idea of going to school for jewelry design after attending GCC. I also realized I needed help to produce 12 show worthy pieces and I decided to collaborate with Kendra Bush, a junior at RIT in their jewelry program. Kendra and I also attended high school together.




Our inspiration for the show was a body piece that was worn for Rochester Fashion Week. We went off the idea of body pieces and then just went for some fun variations. The scene is comprised of sterling, fine, and nickel silver, brass, and pearls. As we started designing we noticed that there was this evolution that happened with our pieces and that is where the scene name Fashion is… Evolution came from. Fashion has continuously evolved and jewelry has as well.


I can’t wait to be able to share our vision with you!

-Julia Bailey

Face to Face With Artist: Mathieu Crowley


I recently had the pleasure of interviewing GCC Digital Art student Mathieu Crowley. He is the artist responsible for the dazzling flyers for this year’s fashion show!

matt pic

Name: Mathieu J. Crowley
Born: November 27th, 1980 in Milwaukee Wisconsin
Currently resides in: Perry NY
Artistic Influences: Frank Frazetta, Luis Royo, Dorian Cleavenger, Brian Bollard
Hobbies: Drawing, Painting, Reading, Building Models, Collecting Swords
Favorite Books: Epic Fantasy and the works of H.P. Lovecraft
Favorite Movies: The Empire Strikes Back, James Bond, Batman (1989)


Mathieu majored in Digital Art because he believes that with the progression of technology, unless you are already established, you cannot make a living as a traditional artist. If given the choice he would prefer a pencil and a pad of paper over the click of a mouse, but the job market just isn’t there.

He hopes to become a graphic artist in advertising, and in fact was a former student of Fashion Business professor Rick Dudkowski. He took an advertising class with Professor Dudkowski, who raved about his abilities and marketing bravery. I asked Mathieu, if he could have his absolute “dream job”, what would it be? He replied that he would love to work for Marvel Comics, as it has been a formative influence, and he could pursue artistic projects he would be genuinely passionate about.

Doing work that he enjoys is crucial for him. He has the tendency to really work with his clients, communicating frequently, and desiring their input during the creative process. Mathieu finds it helpful to listen to music while he creates, as it really puts him in the proper mindset for a given project. The type of music varies with the subject matter of his art, for instance while designing our fashion show flyer he listened to smooth jazz.


Mathieu does take on commissions, but he stresses the need to know exactly what the client wants, so that he can then incorporate his own style. If you’re in need of a talented and dedicated artist, be it digital or traditional media, I can’t rec commend him enough.His passion and professionalism shine through in all that he does.Thank you again Mathieu for your tremendous work. The Fashion Business program is overjoyed to be represented by the beautiful artwork that you were kind enough to create for us.

Maggie’s Fashionable Musings


maggie pic

I filled up my coffee mug, pulled out my favorite chair, watched the last of the sunset glow and wrote you this blog post. As the 35th annual Genesee Community College fashion show approaches there are so many emotions: pride, excitement, fear, joy, just to name a mere few. The theme this year, in particular, is apt to the definition that is the culture of the fashion industry itself: Fashion Is Well, what is it? To each and every individual fashion is something completely unique. It’s war, peace, happiness, depression, anger, love and a million things in between. Fashion wakes up with you in the morning and tucks you in caressingly at night. Fashion protects you from the elements and projects your character to the world. But what is fashion really? Does anyone know? Maybe there isn’t any “one”  right or wrong answer. Maybe fashion is just you. This year for the fashion show, as a sophomore fashion student, I have the honor of co-producing a scene with my best friend (Jessica Rush, also a fashion student sophomore) entitled “Culture”. To me and Jessica, fashion is the traditions that display themselves in the different garbs which represent cultures all over the world. But to you fashion may be something utterly different. On April 30th people from all over Western New York will gather together at GCC to define what fashion is to them. I think that is one of the most beautiful and inspiring things in the world, and I don’t think you want to miss it.

-Maggie Gabalski

The GCC Tartan is Officially Registered!


tartan websiteThreadcount: B/36 W8 B6 Y/24 




For all of you keeping up with this exciting story, the Genesee Community College tartan is now officially registered with The Scottish Register of Tartans! This is a phenomenal achievement for Professor Ehrhart who has labored so extensively to bring this project to life, the GCC Fashion Business program, and the entire college! In case you missed the original post detailing just what goes into crafting a tartan, feel free to check it out here.


To view the official page dedicated to the GCC tartan on The Scottish Register of Tartans’ website, just click here! This is such a tremendous honor, and a real feather in the cap of both the Fashion program, and the school as a whole.


Established by the Scottish Parliament in 2008, the Scottish Register of Tartans promotes and preserves information about registered tartans.To learn more about the fabulous Scottish Register of Tartans find them on Facebook, and Twitter .