Bridal Scene – Eternal Inspiration


Eternal Inspiration featured brides, groomsmen, bridesmaids, and a junior bridesmaid in Fashion Forward on April 27th. The gowns that were donated to this scene were completely transformed into new designs that any fashion forward bride would be inspired by. The tuxes by tuxedo junction gave our men a sharp classic look, with an edgy twist. Our first design was a peacock inspired gown by Karen Sessonna, Karen designed this gown to act as a peacock and transform itself on the runway.

Designed By Karen Sessanna Model Lindsey Visser & Sean Allen

Designed By Karen Sessanna
Model Lindsey Visser & Sean Allen

This next gown was created by Jill Kowalczewski to look like the sketch featured on our tickets and posters.

Designed by Jill Kowalczewski Model: Taylor Lauricella

Designed by Jill Kowalczewski
Model: Taylor Lauricella

“The Queen” was dyed by Samantha Vogt and designed by Jill Kowalczewski. This ombre gown features the classic costume imagery of a queen.

Designed By Jill Kowalczewski Models: Megan Fowler & Christian Hoffmann

Designed By Jill Kowalczewski
Models: Megan Fowler & Christian Hoffmann

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Special Thanks to everyone who contributed to my scene, I couldn’t have done it without you!!!

Fashion Forward is Eternally Greatful


The fashion show on Saturday was a total success, we heard nothing but compliments and positive feedback! I am incredibly relieved that the show is over however, it feels like a bitter sweet ending. I am excited to begin a new chapter in my life, but it saddens me that routine hard work is now over. The challenges that we faced were difficult, but they made life exciting and gave a sense of pride when those challenges were overcome.
On behalf of the entire fashion show production class, I must thank everyone who participated in the fashion show. This production required so many helping hands and it wouldn’t have been possible without the help and support from our school and community. I myself would like to thank Mike Perry, for devoting so much time into editing our pre scene and preshow videos; Marc Tillery, for editing our music and making our show sound spectacular; Barry Chow, for returning to us with just enough time to organize the video recording of our show; Amy Slusser, for guiding her class to make a ugly space beautiful, making our design theme carry through to our after party, and refueling our guests with refreshments and hor’dourves; Al Leight for creating our Behind the Scenes and DVD; Tim Landers and his maintenance team, for putting up with our preciseness and setting up our stage decorations; Ashley Ricketts, for filming, directing, and editing our preshow video ; Security, for protecting our merchandise; Gary Glaser, for photographing our show; Todd Sloat, for lighting up our stage and adding dramatic effects to the scenes; all of our designers, interns, hair/make up stylists, models, parents, and everyone else!


The most important person I would like to thank would be Mr. Rick Dudkowski, our fashion show production professor who led our class to obtaining a impactful reinvented show. Without his guidance we would’ve ran into many more issues and wouldn’t have been able to produce the quality show we had. I recommend to all upcoming fashion show production students to LISTEN TO MR. D!!!
Honestly, this show came together because of a group effort and no one individual would have been able to do this alone. Each and every person that participated in this show played a key role and we cannot thank you enough.
The lessons I have learned in this fashion show production class are priceless, I will take them with me throughout my lifetime and will always remember that teamwork can achieve greatness.

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Bridal Scene – Fashion Forward


For this year’s fashion show Fashion Forward, I am the scene coordinator for the Bridal Scene titled Eternal Inspiration. The gowns I will be featuring in my scene were donated from M. A. Carr bridal, to the GCC fashion department. The tuxes are being provided by Tuxedo Junction in the McKinley Mall. My three designers and I will be taking the gowns and completely deconstructing them into new styles of bridal gowns. Jill Kowalczewski, my main designer will be featuring an original design based on the sketch, which was drawn by Shawna Platt, on the poster and tickets for the show. This original design will be created without a pattern or guidelines as to how to create the gown. I am very anxious and excited to see the crowd’s reaction when this piece is unveiled. Jill is an incredible designer who will be designing 8 gowns for the bridal scene this year!

Fashion Forward

Another featured designer is Karen Sessonnia. Karen is a wonderful designer who is inspired by movement. The gowns she is reinventing feature, tulle, accordion organza and feathers. These show stopping dresses will move the audience with their enhanced beauty and demand the attention of the room.
Last but not least I will be featuring Jill Bates, a designer from the Rochester area. Jill will be designing a bridal gown with a party twist, this gown will feature a high-low hem and a cape for additional dramatization.


A New Show


Fashion Forward, the title and theme for the upcoming fashion show at the end of April, has been completely reinvented from previous years. The 32nd annual fashion show is features an array of new aspects to the fashion program. The fashion show is featuring original designs created by freshman students, sophomore students, and community members. These designs will be created exclusively for Fashion Forward this year. In light of the large donation of over 40 gowns to the fashion department, from M. A. Carr Bridal, Fashion Forward is featuring reinvented deigns. These bridal gowns will be completely deconstructed to create a totally new look. I have heard talk of many designers even dying the gowns different colors to stray away from the classic bridal white image.


In conjunction with the design aspect of the show, we also have broadened our merchandising horizons. This will be the first year in GCC fashion show history that we will be featuring a New York City Trunk show from Buffalo David Bitton. This famous designer has been kind enough to send us their upcoming line of clothing, which will be featured in the scene Reckless in Fashion Forward.
When recreating this show we looked at all aspects of designing the show from chair covers to changing the show times, eventually after a lot of discussion, we decided the most impactful aspect about the show we could change would be the commentary. Therefore we came up with a concept to remove a live commentator and transition between scenes with video commentary. These videos would be individually be created by the scene coordinators to give the audience an idea of what they will be seeing next and where the inspiration for the scene came from. The video commentary will be a tremendous change to previous years but hopefully with a lot of hard work we will be able to make this change a positive one, and have a show worth remembering.

Model Auditions February 12th & 13th


The fashion show planning has begun! We are kicking of the year with a great start and as each day passes the anticipation builds for the most exciting event at GCC. The 32nd annual fashion show, Fashion Forward, is on Saturday April 27th. There will be an afternoon show at 3:00 and an evening show at 7:00.

Are you interested in being a part of Western New York’s largest fashion show? Model auditions will be held on Tuesday February 12th from 11:00-2:00 and Wednesday February 13th from 11:00-2:00. Anyone is welcome to come strut their stuff in front of the scene producers. There are currently 12 scenes in the show, with each scene consisting of 15-25 models that’s up to 300 models!

If you are interested in being involved please join us at the forum stage and dress to impress. We will be interested in your appearance, walk, and poses, so please be prepared to walk for a set judges. We will be asking for all models to have availibilty on Friday April 26th from 3:00-8:00 and all day Saturday April 27th. We may also need models to meet for fittings based on scene selection.

The scene producers will be making their model selection the following week and we will post our selections by D260. If anyone is not chosen for the show please don’t take it personally. Based on my experience, as a model and a fashion show producer, I know the hardship people face when being turned down for a modeling job but it may have nothing to do with appearance. I have had to turn down beautiful models because they are too small to wear my merchandise. So once again don’t be upset, specific merchandise requires certain body types. There will always be another show where you could be the perfect model.

If anyone is unable to make model auditions please contact me, Samantha Vogt. My email is Anyone auditioning who is not a student at GCC can contact my personal email I will need your contact information, height, age, size, location and a few pictures so the scene producers have an idea of your appearance. One head shot along with a few body shots would be the most preferable. In addition to the photos, if you have any other modeling experiences please list those as well.

We are looking for a large variety of models male, female, children, adults, tall, short, curvy, thin, etc. So please audition even if you are not the typical 6 foot size 00 models seen on TV. If you are beautiful and can work it on the runway, you are exactly who we are looking for.

I will be looking forward to everyone auditioning this week and I cannot wait to see everyone work it!

Designing our Future


Candace #1

Candace Cooper is the founder and designer of  Can’de Couture , an up and coming fashion brand. It’s popularity has dominated across her home town of Rochester and now she is striving to reach across Western New York. The Can’de Couture collection began as a senior project and ended up becoming the start of her dream.”For a girl who has never had a sewing class in her life, I truly believe that this talent is a gift from God.”

 Can’de Couture was first discovered by well-known photographer named Christopher Cardwell, owner of  GoodKnews Photography. He was astounded by the designs of the collection and was very impressed by Candace, who was only seventeen at the time.  After the brand was discovered, Candace was contacted by the director of ROC The Runway, one of the biggest fashion shows in Rochester, NY. They expressed the need of featuring Can’de Couture in the show and that year Candace was presented with the title of the youngest and most talented designer in the show.

Candace #3

Since the show, Can’de Couture’s brand has had many business inquires and a tremendous boost in clientele.  Can’de Couture’s target market are young ladies that are looking for a posh style without the high price tag.

Can’de Couture encourages the motto of “dressing for success every day.” The brand focuses on trendy designs, while pursing the most affordable  of styles for fashionistas. Can’de Couture’s designs are   classic, with a chic and sophisticated approach. The Can’de Couture brand takes designs to the next level by including edgy and stylish pieces that easily transition from day to night wear.

Candace #2

Despite that Candace is a freshmen at Genesee, she has worked hard and proven her worth. She will be designing  for her own scene in the 32nd Annual Fashion Show, Fashion Forward!

Get ready to see Can’de Couture on the Catwalk!


Fantasy Bridal


If the merchandise catalog assignment, in the Fashion Trends and Design class, was a contest Kelly Wetherby would have taken the gold.  Kelly’s specialty is bridal. Using her talent and creativity she assembled a bridal guidebook entitled Bella Sposa, which translates to Beautiful Bride.  The bridal guidebook featured three types of silhouettes; ball gowns, mermaids, and A-line. Instead of organizing the gowns by silhouettes, Kelly organized the gowns by Disney Princesses. The ball gowns featured Cinderella and Belle, mermaid style gowns highlighted Ariel, and A-line silhouettes presented Sleeping Beauty. Kelly carefully selected gowns that represented each Disney Princess, along with researching prices and giving detailed descriptions of each style.


Kelly impressed her fellow classmates with her presentation. Her bridal guide was an outstanding example of her creative work. She educated the class with a fantastic presentation of current bridal fashions with an exciting twist. As Kelly’s bridal guide states brides can truly “be a princess on their wedding day!”

Produced By: Ashley Ricketts and Samantha M Vogt

Fashion Forward


As all fashion majors must know, being that it is fall, we are currently looking ahead to our spring season.  In the natural progression of planning for our spring season, the fashion students are in the midst of planning our 32nd annual fashion show. Things are looking promising with our recent donation along with the vast amount of progress towards the show. I would like to have the pleasure to officially announce our spring 2013 fashion show entitled

Fashion Forward will represent an edgy, reinvented and design oriented show. This will be the first fashion show where we will have two years of design students involved, so I am excited to see what unique original designs will be presented on the runway this year. The design students tend to be confidential when it comes to releasing their spring designs, however they have shared a few of the inspirations for their clothing.

As for another new concept, this will be the first show that the fashion program is extending our outreach to our local designers as well as non-design majors at the college. Anyone who is ambitious enough to get involved in this year’s show is welcome to be a part of it.

To give you a better understanding of the show there are “base scenes” and “new scenes”. “New scenes” are new concepts for scenes created by the students that are generally unique to the current fashion show year. “Base scenes” are, for the most part, scenes that are always in the show. Those scenes are a cultural scene, lingerie scene, children’s scene and bridal scene. These scenes tend to have a bigger audience pull therefore to keep our numbers up we include these scenes. These are some examples of “base scenes” concepts for Fashion Forward.

We have excelled so far into the show this year, scene proposals have already been created, designers are creating product, and our class has come to a conclusion of an overall theme. I cannot wait to see what the spring fashion show beholds.

Spring Fashion Show


It’s October and we already have our fashion students preparing for the Spring 2013 fashion show, this is our thirty second annual fashion show at Genesee. The previous fashion show, Soiree, had over 1600 in attendance therefore the current fashion students have their creative juices flowing, trying to create an even more impressive show than last year. Many ideas and themes for the show are looking quite impressive, one of which is emphasizing the importance of creating a unified show with original designs. The Spring 2013 show is already looking auspicious; the Genesee Fashion Department just recently received 16 new bridal gowns. These gowns are an incredible gift from M. A. Carr Bridal, a bridal salon located in Orchard Park New York. These gowns will permit the fashion design students to reconstruct and produce new original designs. We cannot thank M. A. Carr enough for their generous contribution to our fashion program.

Buffalo David Bitton


Buffalo David Bitton is a denim company that hails from Montreal, Canada.  While visiting the big apple, our fashion students had the pleasure of meeting Ms. Diane Alexander, the head of public relations in the New York branch of Buffalo (not to be confused with the nearby city of Buffalo). Upon entering the building, we were greeted by Diane with a big cup of coffee in one hand and a big smile on her face. Her first words were “I’m not a morning person” and yet she was the most excitable and perky person that spoke to us. Diane was one of my favorite speakers on the trip, she not only spoke of her job description but she also got the students involved in her presentation. It was a very lively interactive experience, especially for being so early in the morning.

A handful of Diane’s responsibilities, as the head of PR, consist of placing products in magazines, social media, television and movies. Diane explained it’s not only print ads and commercials used for publicity; it’s also acquiring celebrities to wear the merchandise. This form of advertising can be more effective as it is subtle and feeds into the readers’ subconscious. If celebrities are wearing Buffalo David Bitton merchandise, it could be showcased multiple times rather than featured in one ad a customer may overlook. However to every good there is an evil. If a celebrity begins to down spiral (like Brittany shaving her head – type of down spiral), and is wearing the product, it could be damaging to the company’s image, therefore select celebrities are invited to wear the product and others are not.

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Diane also announced that Buffalo is rapidly approaching the grand opening their first store in NYC, which will be located in Soho.  Buffalo not only has a great brand name (obviously being from Buffalo, I am a proud Buffalonian), but the products are a great quality and are fabulous trendy styles. We had the opportunity to behold “the closet” while being at Buffalo, it was a room bursting with merchandise and it was amazing. The fall line was so trendy but in the most sophisticated method possible. During the whole presentation Diane spoke of these skull pants, the first image that came to mind was a black jean with corny white skulls all over it. While in “the closet” I beheld the skull pants and they were unbelievable. The pants featured tonal skulls that looked almost like a brocade pattern; it was only when you examined it long enough that you could see the skulls within the pattern.

Buffalo David Bitton is a remarkable company with a talented head of PR. Genesee cannot thank Diane enough for spending time teaching us about the industry. Diane had the patience to meet with our fashion students for the second year in a row. Once again it was an outstanding presentation that the students will never forget, especially for someone who said “I’m not a morning person.”