Just Accepted MPD Student Wants to Become Trend Researcher/Product Developer



Name: Kayla Rivera

Age: 18

Hometown: Kansas City, Missouri

FIDM Major: Merchandise Product Development

FIDM Campus and Start Date: Los Angeles; Fall 2015

Admissions Advisor: Susan Pope

How did your advisor help with the process? Susan spent a little over two years discussing my future with FIDM. She was so helpful and always made sure that I was up-to-date with events that I might be able to attend. Recently, when we were making all decisions final, we would have long phone calls discussing majors and my interests. She also took a lot of time to help and explain to me all the requirements I would have to complete before my final call with the Director of Admissions. I am so glad that I had her to help me along the way.

Tell us a bit about yourself. I am currently in my fourth year of being a manager of our school's wrestling team. I have enjoyed being apart of our wrestling program because its a sport that is very competitive, and takes a lot of strength and effort. Its an amazing experience to watch our fans who support us come alive in the stands.

What are your proudest accomplishments so far? To me, one of my biggest accomplishments was getting into FIDM. FIDM is the college of my dreams and I am absolutely thrilled that I was able to be accepted to such a wonderful school.

What made FIDM right for you? The opportunities and resources at FIDM will help me be as successful as I can in the fashion industry. I also love how we get to learn from teachers who have first-hand knowledge within the major. I am inspired by how successful past FIDM graduates have been.

What are your career goals? My career goals are to become a trend researcher/product developer and be able to travel all over the world.

What do you expect to learn at FIDM? At FIDM I expect to learn everything from top to bottom about how to be the best trend researcher I can be. I look forward to also learning the history of fashion and how it has evolved throughout time.



FIDM Social Ambassador/Vis Comm Major Interned at Glamour Magazine (Interview)


Visual Communications Student and FIDM Social Ambassador Marisa Pressimone recently completed an internship at Glamour in New York City. We caught up with the New Jersey native to talk about the experience. 

How did this exciting internship come about? I knew I was going to be taking the summer quarter off from FIDM and returning home for the few months, and I wanted to feel accomplished when returning to school that October. I had met with my Career Advisor at FIDM a few times to discuss finding an internship for the summer in New York. I knew that I wanted to try working with a stylist more than anything since that is what I want to do after I graduate from FIDM.

After sending out copies of my resume and different variations of a cover letter, I finally heard back from one stylist's assistant asking me if I could come in that Friday. I was so bummed because I was still in L.A. and had to decline. A few weeks later, when I arrived on the east coast, I decided that it couldn't hurt to email the woman who reached out to me and see if they still needed someone. They responded almost immediately saying they did need help for the summer and they were so glad I had reached out.

I went to meet with the stylist's assistant a few days later for an interview and ended up getting the job. I went home to research the stylist I would be working for and found out that she was the fashion editor-at-large for Glamour, Laura Ferrara. 

What were your roles and responsibilities? I learned the ins and outs of the styling world and there was a lot of shopping. I got to go to the big department stores and different studios around New York and help with the pulls. I also returned a lot of clothes once a shoot was done. I got to stand on set a few times to assist and I would help with the assembly and take down of the wardrobe on set.

How did you enjoy working in the city? I'm from that area and I've grown up around it, but I've never seen the way the fashion industry in New York operates and it was amazing and incredibly fast-paced. Every single day you need to go to work more ready than the day before and coffee is very, very important.

What are your plans after graduation in 2015? I've always wanted to be a stylist so I'm going to try to make that happen. My biggest struggle would just be deciding what type of styling I would prefer, but that will come with more experience.



Just Accepted Vis Comm Student Plans Career as Personal/Celebrity Stylist



Name: Marc Morales

Age: 17

Hometown: Anaheim, California

FIDM Major: Visual Communications

FIDM Campus and Start Date: Los Angeles, Fall 2015

Admissions Advisor: Cathy Chambers

How did your advisor help with the process? Cathy was like my fairy godmother, turning something that was merely just an idea into a reality. She was very patient with me especially with my hectic schedule. She always kept a smile and made me feel right at home with the environment. The difficult part of every obstacle for me is the beginning, but Cathy made it feel very effortless and simple going through everything that I needed to know and always asking if I had questions. I am very thankful to have her as my advisor and I owe her a lot of gratitude!

Tell us a bit about yourself. I grew up in Texas, then moved to California when I was twelve, and my mom and I experienced a kind of rebirth. I completely immersed myself in art, music, and fashion. Some of my other interests include sports such as tennis, taekwondo, track, cheer, and shopping, of course. I enjoy the theatre whether I am in the spotlight, or working backstage on costume and makeup. Blogging and photography have also struck my interest as I find new ways of expressing myself.

I am very ambitious, outgoing, driven, dedicated, spirited, and passionate. I thrive to keep going and never stop to look back. I love to participate in school activities such as leadership and yearbook. I am also a traveler, my mission one day is to see all seven wonders of the world and explore new and unseen places. I love to set goals for myself and meet those goals one step at a time. I am inspired by many fashion icons, but my number one inspiration is my mother.

What are your proudest accomplishments so far? Apart from being president of my Fashion Club at school, I have also accomplished quite few things over the span of my high school year. I won a gold medal in the Florida Junior Taekwondo Olympics, I landed my first internship working for a theatre costumer, I was elected on the executive board in my school’s student body, and I hold over 13 club board positions for this year. I was also appointed editor of the school’s yearbook, I accepted a lead role at a theatre fall production, and to top it all off, I got accepted to FIDM which was a massive milestone in my life.

What made FIDM right for you? I like to consider myself a hacker -- not the kind who sends out viruses, but the kind who tries new and innovative ideas to approach new methods to things. And FIDM offers just that: an environment where creative minds and creative people can interact with each other. I attended 3 Days of Fashion this past summer, and it was truly an unforgettable experience. I not only learned about the majors that I was interested in, but majors that one would never imagine coming out of a fashion school. I also toured the LA campus and knew right away that this is where I belonged. 

What are your career goals? Once out of college, I plan on becoming a personal/celebrity stylist and starting up my own styling consultation service. If I ever decide to step out of the styling career, or simply if I decide the career is not meant for me, I will take the many careers that FIDM and Visual Communications has prepared me for and make something out of it.

What do you expect to learn at FIDM? I expect to learn more of the industry from the instructors and teachers at FIDM. I want to learn how to execute my vision, know tricks and shortcuts of the major, and how to make it in the industry and the real world. I expect FIDM will prep me for every obstacle that stops or blocks me from reaching my goals. I feel confident about FIDM and super stoked that I get to spend the next two or four years of my life in a school that’s produced some of the greatest people in the industry, and I want to be one those people someday.



From the Intern's Desk: How to Stand Out in Your FIDM Admissions Interview


You've applied to FIDM, completed your entrance project, and landed an interview. Congratulations! Now, you know you only get one chance to impress, but how exactly do you do that? Here's how to make an impact at your FIDM Admissions Interview. 

Prepare, Prepare, Prepare

One great way to stand out is showing that you've done your homework. How much do you kow about the school? Prepare what you'd want to say about your portfolio and entrance project, and share your story. Your stories should be concise and interesting. Make sure they have a good opening line, such as, "I'm going to tell you about a time that I designed a dress for my school's fashion club." Then, practice telling your stories so you can relay them without stumbling or sounding like a robot. Whenever possible, use one of your stories to answer an interview question.

Show Your Work

In addition to bringing your resume, high school transcripts, and completed entrance project, bring examples of your work. FIDM Admissions Advisor Kristen Chocek says, "Having actions that show your interests prove to us that your passion translates into hard work and a promising future." So if you're interested in the Fashion Design Program, present some flat sketches. Interested in Digital Media? Present a film you edited. These projects can be created specifically for your FIDM Admissions interview and it will make all the difference.

Dress Well

Yes, FIDM is a fashion college, and if you're applying because of your love of fashion, show it. Keep it relaxed, simple, and professional, but let your outfit show a little personality. Be professional, but don't appear too corporate or too out-of-this-world fashion trendy. Put the best version of yourself forward, simply and cleanly. 

Emphasize Your Potential

You are still a student and are coming to this institution to learn. No candidate is perfect, no matter your prior experience. So emphasize your potential and what you hope to learn at FIDM.

Coming to you from the intern's desk,

FIDM Student, Mariya Dondonyan

Follow Mariya on her personal blog, The Gracious Lady.



Just Accepted Merch Marketing Student Is Graduate of Biola University



Name: Laura Wray

Age: 24

Hometown: Delmar, New York

Previous College: I graduated from Biola University in La Mirada with a BA in English. I currently work as an Assistant Buyer/Sales Associate for the boutique The Passionate Collector in Newport Coast.

FIDM Major: Merchandise Marketing Professional Designation

FIDM Campus and Start Date: Los Angeles Campus, October 2015

Admissions Advisor: Shirley McDonald

How did your advisor help with the process? Shirley was simply phenomenal. She understood my busy schedule and found time to meet with me despite my limited availability. I truly appreciate how patient she was in guiding me through the whole process.

Tell us a bit about yourself. Fashion is a hobby, a passion, and an always-growing interest of mine. I love FashionTV, watching the newest runway shows, and reading about current fashion trends in magazines. I aspire to be a Buyer for a Department store and I hope my future job enables me to travel; I have a desire to see all the incredible international fashion, and to meet the world-famous designers.

What are your proudest accomplishments so far? My proudest accomplishment is beginning the journey to become a buyer in the fashion industry. Growing up, I was advised to focus on finding a job that was conventional. Despite wanting to go to FIDM, I pushed aside my dream, and settled for obtaining a practical pre-law degree. Upon graduation, I became a legal assistant, but found that I was bored and still dispassionate about law.

With the encouragement of my husband, I decided to pursue fashion, and got a job as an Assistant Buyer. For the first time I felt I was following the right path, I was following my real passion. Realizing that I could make my love of fashion a career, I was inspired to apply to FIDM for further education. I have never been prouder or happier, and I am so excited to begin classes in October.

What made FIDM right for you? FIDM was the perfect fit for me because I knew I would be around people with the same passion that I have. I was so excited when I read the courses offered to someone in the Merchandise Marketing major, as they were tailor-made for the career I aspire to have. The integration of real life application, internships, and endless networking opportunities made FIDM the obvious choice for me.

Describe your entrance project. Applicants to the Merchandise Marketing major are required to envision that they own a store. This includes having to decide the demographic the store will cater to, the style of clothing, and the layout of the store, and creating five different looks that represent the store. I envisioned a store called Pluie et Fleur (Rain and Flower), a Parisian-inspired boutique that caters to women 45 to 55.

What are your career goals? I would love to be the Senior Buyer at a department store. Ideally, I would love Neiman Marcus, Bergdorf Goodman, Barneys New York, or Saks Fifth Avenue. I primarily want to buy for clothing; I currently assist in buying for jewelry and handbags, and want to expand into clothing as my career progresses.

What do you expect to learn at FIDM? I expect to learn how to be an excellent buyer, especially in the area of women’s fashion. I would love to actually learn about all the different fabrics and textiles and I am also incredibly excited for the Fashion Forecasting class. While it is fun to buy things I like personally, I know there is much more involved in buying than my personal opinion. With our world becoming ever more integrated and diverse, it is both important and invaluable to understand how to buy for a demographic that is different from yourself, and to learn how to forecast the fashions for that particular group.



Paige Denim Graphic Designer and FIDM Grad Simone Garcia Visits Premiere Product Development Group at FIDM

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Paige Denim Graphic Designer and FIDM Grad Simone Garcia recently visited her alma mater to speak at a meeting with the Premiere Product Development Group—an elite group of FIDM Students earning degrees in Product Development.

Simone graduated in June earlier this year with a Merchandise Product Development Professional Designation Degree from FIDM.

She advised the students to do internships. "It's 100% important to have an internship." In fact, that's precisely what led Simone to Paige Denim. Back in March, Simone was sitting in the very same seats that the students were sitting in when Laura Jenkins from Paige Denim was the guest speaker for the Premiere Product Development Group at FIDM. Simone and Laura, also a graduate of FIDM, connected that day,and Simone followed up for an internship. Simone's first day was on April 18th, her birthday. She interned for a few months before she was hired full-time in September as a Junior Graphic Designer.

"I encourage you guys to go for it, and get out there!" the recent FIDM Grad announced.

When asked what set her apart from the other candidates in the job interview process, she said it was her portfolio. Simone did very well in Estel Hahn's Brand Portfolio class at FIDM. "During my internship, I showed my boss my portfolio and he was impressed." She was offered the job before she was even finished with her internship.

Ultimately, Simone wants to be a buyer and have her own business. In the mean time, she said one of the biggest perks of working at a premium denim label is building relationships with others.

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Paige Denim Graphic Designer & FIDM Grad Simone Garcia holding a pair of Paige Blue Galaxy Coating jeans.



Just Accepted Merchandise Marketing Student Has a 4.0 GPA and Is Captain of Her Soccer Team



Name: Leila Sadeghi

Age: 17

Hometown: Detroit, Michigan and Beverly Hills, California

FIDM Major: Merchandise Marketing

FIDM Campus and Start Date: Los Angeles, Fall 2015

Admissions Advisor: Roxy DeGuzman

How did your advisor help with the process? Roxy helped me set up my tour and then met with me when I visited the FIDM campus. She talked with me to help me decide on a major and gave me a list of all the things I needed in order to apply. She was always there to help whenever I had a question about the application, my interview, or any other concerns.

Tell us a bit about yourself. I moved to Beverly Hills from Michigan right before I started my freshman year of high school. I having been playing soccer since kindergarden and it has definitely been the longest and most rewarding passion I have had in my life. I am also very passionate about school. Education is very important to me and my family, and I enjoy learning and challenging myself. Travel is something that I also greatly enjoy, and I hope that my career in fashion will allow me to travel to many new and exciting places. I am very interested in entrepreneurship and building my own company. I am inspired by my parents who built and run their own successful business.

What are your proudest accomplishments so far? One of my proudest accomplishments has to be playing varsity soccer for the last four years of high school and becoming the captain this year. I love my team and the game and I am so happy that I have been given the privilege to lead the team this year. Another accomplishment that I am proud of is my 4.0 GPA. I have worked very hard in school and I am happy that it payed off through four years on the principles honor role. Lastly, I am extremely proud of getting into my dream school, FIDM.

What made FIDM right for you? Being a creative and forward thinking person, I want to go to a school that embraces new ideas and ways of learning. FIDM’s unique and modern way of teaching students in a hands on way is a perfect way to prepare for the real world fashion industry. FIDM is also the perfect place to make many new contacts for my future fashion career. What also appealed to me about FIDM was the fact that they help students get internships and jobs during and after college. Another exciting aspect of FIDM is that it is located in the heart of the very busy and urban area of Downtown Los Angeles.

Describe your entrance project. As a Merchandise Marketing major, I had to create a project that exemplified what my ideal retail store would look. I had to thoroughly describe my intended customer including their lifestyle, job, education, income, etc. I then put together five accessorized outfits: eveningwear, casual wear, sportswear, career wear, and a category of my choosing which I chose to be swimwear. I then put all these parts together in a neat and organized portfolio.

What are your career goals? I have always loved fashion and been interested in having a career in the industry. I am interested in becoming a buyer for a retail store and then going on to start my own clothing brand. My main interest is in accessories and I would love to one day have my own shoe line. As a vegan, I also aspire to create a cruelty free brand and spread the message of animal rights through my brand.

What do you expect to learn at FIDM? At FIDM, I expect to learn how the fashion industry works. I want to learn the terms and techniques that are used among people with careers in fashion. I expect that FIDM will help me grow personally, creatively, and educationally. I hope that FIDM will teach me how to properly present my ideas and how to start my own business.



FIDM Student Receives Travel Scholarship from NRF to Attend Retail's BIG Show in NYC


Business Management Student Karla Maldonado (pictured, left with classmates Elizabeth Poteracki and Amanda Villawas) is a semi-finalist in the National Retail Federation's 2015 Next Generation Scholarship and will be receiving a travel scholarship to attend Retail's BIG Show in New York City on January 10, 2015. The event puts students in a room with executives from brands such as Belk Inc., HSNi, Tiffany & Co., Trunk Club, and Julep Beauty Inc.

Karla will benefit from career advice from retail recruiters offering opportunities for internships, training programs, and entry-level career positions. Congratulations! 



L.A. Label Together California Hosts Holiday Pop Up Shop Downtown


On Friday, December 12, the sustainable fashion label Together California, is hosting Holiday Bizarre, a pop-up shop event at the Bold Room, directly across from Downtown L.A.'s Ace Hotel. The pop-up event will house brands invited by founders Lily Cherazi and Benedict Barrett and feature live music, DJs, an open bar, and hair braiding. 



IMPD Graduate Bringing Superhero Shirts With Detachable Capes to Kids (Interview)



Name: Lindsay Newhouse

CompanyLittle Capers


Grad Year: 2001

What led you to your involvement with Little Capers? A friend of mine approached me about partnering with her in a company she bought four years ago. She hadn't done anything with it for a couple years. I believe in the product and see a market for Little Capers. I can see how we can make it grow.

What is the age range you design for? We are gearing towards boys and girls ages two to seven years old. 

How did FIDM help prepare you for running your own business? FIDM helped me learn about product development, textiles, and production. I worked for 10 years in product development and production before I took five years off after having my own kids. Classes I took at FIDM has helped me in areas I never used with my past positions.

You may find Little Capers on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.



Just Accepted Fashion Design Student Is Cosplay Enthusiast Who Makes Her Own Costumes



Name: Amanda Guerrero

Age: 17

Hometown: Corona, CA

FIDM Major: Fashion Design

FIDM Campus and Start Date: Orange County, July 2015 

Admissions Advisor: Cathy Chambers

How did your advisor help with the process? She was very informative and helpful. I felt comfortable and prepared to go to FIDM. I am grateful for all the help she's given me. It was a relief she didn't feel weird about my style/interests.

Tell us a bit about yourself. My hobbies include watching anime, playing video games, and cosplaying. My interests are mainly anime, Quentin Tarantino movies, classic rock, 80s music, making cosplay, and anything on Playstation. I really feel that anime was the start of most of my interests. I've seen tons of cosplay at anime conventions which is costume and play into one word. It has shown me different fashion styles that aren't usually seen where I'm from such as Lolita fashion, Fairy kei, and Pastel Goth. 

What are your proudest accomplishments so far? When I made my first full on from scratch cosplay. I didn't have a serger at the time so I spent hours hand sewing the edges the keep them from fraying. I was very proud of my costume because I worked on everything from head-to-toe. I felt like a professional cosplayer for once.

What made FIDM right for you? Since I already made costumes and clothes all the time, I thought might as well make it into a career. And I believed FIDM was the perfect school to guide me to that path.

Describe your entrance project. My six sketches were based off a fashion line I was already working on. I was going for elegant and cute; my inspiration board was probably my favorite part of the project. I felt like there were no limits and my collage of pictures was the only way to express my style. 

What are your career goals? My goal is to become a costume designer for TV and films. Hopefully, it will give me the opportunity to travel and meet a lot of people.

What do you expect to learn at FIDM? I hope to learn some ways to color and sketch my designs so people can understand what I'm doing. I really want to understand why patterns have so much math involved. Most importantly, I would like to learn more about myself along the way.



Revenge Costume Designer Jill Ohanneson Chats With InStyle About Sunday Night's Fashion


Fans of the hit show Revenge never know what to expect when it comes to twist-and-turn plot lines, but one thing everyone can count on each season is the high-fashion looks from costume designer and FIDM Graduate Jill Ohanneson. She chatted with InStyle about the navy-and-gold gown Emily Thorne wore in a party scene:

“Since it was the yacht club, there were lots of navys, blues, reds, and golds, and that dress was a nod to the nautical in an elegant, classy way,” Jill told the magazine. “The dress is by Xscape, I found it at Nordstrom, and it’s such an amazing neckline when it bisects Emily’s shoulders like that. She was really comfortable and felt really good in it.”



Michelle Obama Wore Monique Lhuillier to Recent Kennedy Center Honors



For Sunday night's Kennedy Center Honors in Washington, D.C., First Lady Michelle Obama wore a frosted pale-pink gown from FIDM Graduate Monique Lhuillier's Spring 2015 collection. The dazzling dress featured a sweetheart neckline and glittering embellishments.

The gala will be broadcast on CBS on December 30, 2014 at 9:00 p.m. ET/PT.

Read more about Mrs. Obama's look in the New York Times



The Top 10 FIDM Stories of 2014 Include Tim Gunn, Hunger Games, Ben Affleck's Gone Girl Movie, and the Juicy Couture Founders


Tim Gunn's fashion competition show Project Runway: Under the Gunn was filmed at FIDM, Grad Trish Summerville designed the costumes for the Ben Affleck-starring flick Gone Girl, and Grad and Juicy Couture Founder Pamela Skaist-Levy visited FIDM Los Angeles. Those were just a few of the FIDM stories that generated the most buzz in 2014! Here are the top 10: 

10. 7 FIDM Grads Who Are Award-Winning Costume Designers for Movies Like Hunger Games

9. 40 Definite Signs You Went to FIDM

8. Find Out Why This Student Went from Psych Major at UCR to Product Development Major at FIDM

7. After a Degree from UCI This Future Vis Comm Student Is Pursuing Her Childhood Dreams

6. The Founders of Juicy Couture Visit FIDM

5. Just Accepted Student Designs Shorts and T-Shirts 

4. MPD Student Is Assistant Technical Designer at Forever 21

3. 2013/2014 National Scholarship Winners & Finalists Announced

2. Tim Gunn's New Show Project Runway: Under the Gunn Filmed at FIDM

1. Gone Girl Costume Designer Trish Summerville Feat. in Variety's Women's Impact Report




Business Management Student Interning at Nylon Magazine (Interview)


Current FIDM Business Management Student Nikki Dror is a fashion blogger and FIDM Merchandise Marketing Graduate currently living in New York City. She's interning for Nylon magazine and the casting agency Socialyte while finishing her degree online. 

How long have you been in NYC? I moved to New York just three months ago, in mid-September 2014--not long after completing my A.A. degree at FIDM.

Tell us about your two internships. I'm currently interning with an "influencer casting agency" called Socialyte. This innovative kind of casting agency focuses on internet talent and social media influencers (fashion bloggers, Vine stars, influencers who have hundreds of thousands of followers on Instagram etc.). There are so many brands out there that want to tap into the audiences of such influencers, and Socialyte facilitates those deals and contracts. Socialyte was recently acquired by Nylon Media, and that's how I ended up interning in the Nylon magazine office.

What would you like to do after you finish your studies and internships? My plans for my immediate future include staying here in New York and continuing to blog actively. I've had so many opportunities here to meet other bloggers, work with amazing brands, and attend A-list events. I only hope that I continue to move in a forward and upward path, growing my blog, and chasing a career in social media marketing.

How has FIDM impacted your career? I never would have even known about the blogging industry--and I certainly wouldn't have seen social media as a lucrative marketing opportunity. FIDM is on the cutting-edge of not only fashion trends, but social and marketing trends, as well.



Love & Hip Hop Hollywood Star Amanda Secor Studying Product Development at FIDM


Amanda Secor, the Love & Hip Hop Hollywood star and owner/designer of the urban streetwear line 18K, is currently studying Merchandise Product Development at FIDM. The hit VH-1 reality series follows a group of young hip-hop stars and their as they navigate their careers and love life in Los Angeles. Amanda is the girlfriend of Fizz from the R&B group B2K. 



GlamGlow Founders Visit FIDM's Los Angeles Campus

FIDM Blog Glamglow

The founders of GlamGlow, husband and wife team Glenn and Shannon Dellimore, visited FIDM's Los Angeles campus this week as guest speakers for the Prestige Beauty Circle, an elite group of students in the Beauty Industry Merchandising & Marketing Program. They shared with the students the story of how their company was born, and offered entrepreneurial and career advice to the students.

GlamGlow now employs FIDM Instructor Amy Chang, along with two FIDM Students.

The couple started with an idea, and developed it. They had an actor friend who was looking for a product that would get your skin instantly camera ready. "You have to find a problem that exists and then fix it." They started doing research online, came up with a formula, met with a chemist, and had a sample created for $80. 

They told the students to believe in their ideas. It's one of the reasons their company has become such a colossal success in the beauty industry. "If you have an idea, don't listen to anyone about what you should or shouldn't do." 

They wanted to use mud and green tea leaf as the key ingredients, and were advised not to because it could get moldy. But, they wouldn't take no for an answer, and challenged the chemist to stabilize the ingredients. A patent attorney told them they'd be wasting their money trying to get a patent for steeping green tea leaf in mud. Ignoring that advice, they filed the patent and got it!

Hard work and late nights have also gotten them to where they are today. The husband and wife team used to package their product at home by hand, spooning the mud into jars. They said they still have the spoon they used to use.

GlamGlow was built by their own legwork. They were the ones who literally walked into Fred Segal to meet their buyer. They personally did the packaging research, to find out which ingredients work better packaged in glass versus plastic. They learned that sourcing in China is not always more cost-effective, despite popular opinion. They learned that tubes are cheaper and jars are more expensive.

The fascinating business and creative lessons they learned went on and on, and the FIDM Students were a captive audience. They even shared a story about what they learned from a college thesis on packaging for Apple. That's right, Apple computer products. Glenn Dellimore said, "Every layer adds perceived value." They implemented this idea into the GlamGlow packaging, with seven layers to opening a GlamGlow product.

GlamGlow started with one SKU; they now have five. The company made $3.2 million in its first year. This year the company hit $200 million.

One last bit of advice from the beauty industry entrepreneurs? "Dream big. Start small. If you have a good attitude and a vision, you will make it."



Rachael McCrary of Jewel Toned Shapewear Shares Business Advice


FIDM Graduate Rachael McCrary, the founder of Jewel Toned Shapewear, is sharing business lessons she has learned since launching her own company. "Ask yourself, if money wasn't involved, is this still my mission on this planet? If yes, then tell everyone all about it and surround yourself with an A-game team. Don't listen to anyone that discourages you," she says. 

Read more on Lucky Community



FIDM Style Project: Brittany Sage of Lipstick and Leopard Print Reveals Her Must-Have Fashion Piece


Image: (Left) Fashion blogger Brittany Sage of Lipstick and Leopard Print and her must-have dark denim skinny jeans.

In this month’s FIDM Style Project series, we reached out to some of our favorite fashion bloggers to ask:

“What’s one thing in your closet that you couldn't live without and why?”

Fashion blogger Brittany Sage of Lipstick and Leopard Print weighed in on the subject:

“When I was asked this question, I had the craziest answers going through my head. My prized possession Alexander McQueen butterfly clutch or my crazy Juicy Couture dress with the polka dots and tons of tulle? No, those answers are all wildly romantic but when it really comes down to it, the item I could not live without is my dark denim skinny jeans. I wear them several times a week and can dress them up or down, with heels, slip-ons or sandals. They make me feel sexy and put together and are a great base to build an outfit around. I could not live without them!”

More about Brittany

Brittany Sage of the lifestyle blog Lipstick & Leopard Print has a penchant for all things fabulous, adventurous and delicious. She loves a good bargain, the "thrill of the find,” thunderstorms, wildflowers, French wine, snail mail, red lipstick and of course—anything leopard print!

Connect with Brittany




About FIDM Style Project

FIDM Style Project is an online editorial collaboration series between the online design community and FIDM/Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising. Are you interested in participating in the next FIDM Style Project series? Get in touch with us here.



Downtown LA Becoming Fashion Retail Hub

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As Downtown Los Angeles undergoes a building boom, big retailers and fashion labels are moving into the prime area surrounding campus. Urban Outfitters, Zara, H&M, Acne Studios, and Tanner Goods are already open—and plans are in the works for A.P.C., Oak NYC, and the Gap to open on Broadway. Read more about Downtown LA's resurgence on Fashionista.



15 Quotes to Inspire You During FIDM Finals


By Social Ambassador Kayla Coleman

Life is full of seasons. Some seasons bring flourishing success, while others may bring challenges and growing pains. No matter the season you are in, it is important to stay inspired. After all, inspiration is the breath of life! Below is a compilation of some wise words that have inspired us recently. As we approach finals week here at FIDM, let the words of leaders inspire you to create your best work yet! Connect with FIDM on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram for inspiring quotes daily.

















Trendwatch: Return of the Fringe

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Fringe is back, according to a report in the Wall Street Journal, and fashion designer Tamara Mellon couldn't be happier. The last time she designed shoes and bags with fringe, for Jimmy Choo about 4 years ago, the style was largely ignored. Flash forward to Fall 2014, and her namesake brand can't deliver her slim leather wrap skirt fast enough. Designer Michael Kors agrees that fringe can be fab, but he adds a caveat: "If you handle fringe the wrong way it gets to costume really easily. Either you're in a revival of 'Annie Get Your Gun' or you're a flapper.

Study the art of trend forecasting for the fashion industry with a degree from FIDM.



Trendwatch: 80s Influence Still Seen in Interiors

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The 80s are back, at least as an Interior Design trend for the coming year. How does that translate visually? According to the trend report by WGSN's Homebuildlife, the 80s can be seen in color blocking and patching of furniture and walls; colorful, playful accessories inspired by Pop Art and the Memphis group; simple geometry and a melange of graphic hand-drawn flecks and squiggles on surfaces.

Students in FIDM's Interior Design program have access to professional trend reports and a rich collection of materials and finishes in the FIDM library.



Just Accepted Beauty Student Is Passionate About Makeup and Art



Name: Haley Bolen

Age: 17

Hometown: Newport Beach, California

FIDM Major: Beauty Merchandising & Marketing

FIDM Campus and Start Date: L.A. Campus, Fall 2015

Admissions Advisor: Susan Pope

How did your advisor help with the process? My advisor completely aided me in my application process, and I don't know how I would have completed the application without her help. She constantly answered any question, no matter how simple or complex, anytime I would ask and she was a key factor in my completion of my final entrance project. She was a great support system and was always there when I needed help.

Tell us a bit about yourself. Ever since I was young, I began watching as many YouTube videos as I could get my hands on, and they were basically mini makeup tutorials. I would sit at the screen of my mom’s computer, glued to the videos that taught me the individuality that makeup allows. The mix of the Internet personalities and their explanations of different products and their effectiveness is what ultimately got me hooked on the world of makeup.

Anyone who knows me knows that I am more or less of a makeup freak. My collection of makeup started when I was in the sixth grade, and has yet to stop. I am so passionate about the different brands of makeup, the ever-changing trends, and the products themselves, that I never seem to get bored. My infatuation carries over into the individual lines that are put out, from the packaging to the sales price--makeup has completely engulfed my life.

I am also constantly inspired by the art found in the world around me. I pull many of my inspirations in life from street art that I see when I frequent cities like New York or LA. When I first visited London, I was amazed at how completely different the culture was, but also at how similar the need for art was in this city. Now, whenever I travel to a new city or town, I am inspired by the artwork that I see all around me, and it inspires my own art as well.

What made FIDM right for you? When looking at applying to FIDM, I saw the perfect balance of academics and art, something I struggled to find anywhere else. The Beauty Industry Merchandising & Marketing major appealed to me the most, because it embodied all of the expectations that I had for my schooling. I feel that FIDM will allow me to grow not only as a student, but as an individual based on the environment that this school offers. In the future, I hope to work alongside major beauty companies and hopefully start a business on my own that allows my ideas to flourish on an even greater level.

Describe your entrance project. My entrance project, titled Skyline, was inspired by the strength and individuality found in the skylines of different cities around the world. One of my favorite things to do is to travel, and every new place that I have been has completely inspired me throughout many aspects of my life. The makeup line that I created was sleek and individualized, much like that of the different cities that each product was named after. I think that the production of my entrance project came easily once I found a muse and something that really captivated my attention.

What are your career goals? In the near future, I hope to work in the design and development area of the beauty industry. I think that there is a need for new innovative products and I am excited to hopefully be able to do that one day. My overall goal is to one day own my own beauty company.

What do you expect to learn at FIDM? I am extremely excited to start my courses at FIDM. I am most looking forward to the evaluate trends and market opportunities, and how individual products can either impact or be impacted by these factors.



25 Inspiring Window Displays by FIDM Students




Have you ever seen something so beautiful that it just made you want to cry? Here are 25 breathtaking window displays created by former FIDM Visual Communications students. Prepare to be inspired. 


Inspiration: Karl Lagerfeld 

Student Designers: Elle Keshishzade, Lauren Koo, Erica Marquz, Carley Miller, Amanda Olivio, Robin Sabado, Erin Schickner, Lauren Verdian, Annette Yeon

Instructor: Donham 



Inspiration: Karl Lagerfeld

Student Designers: Viviana Duran, Jenna Goodrich, Chelsea Nichols, Katelyn Peebles, Mallory Romero, Jenny Su 

Instructor: McCall 



Inspiration: Freedoms on Me 

Student Designers: Sononvia Washington, Veronica Lemos, Samantha Pinto, Devin Dipalma

Instructor: Donham 



Inspiration: Cult Movies - The Raven 

Student Designers: Lauren Dougherty, Caitlin Hernandez, Claire Kruljac, Johauna Mani, Kendall Mercer, Josie Peters, Molly Savant, Michaela Villanueva, Taylor Young 

Instructor: McCall 



Inspiration: VOGUE Fashion Editors - "Babs" Simpson 

Student Designers: Cassie Arsenault, Keilani Hontucan, Jade Oliver, Elizabeth Pante 

Instructor: Donham 



Inspiration: VOGUE Fashion Editors - Anna Wintour 

Student Designers: Tera Rivero, Charisma Tory, Victoria Duarte, Susana Palyan 

Instructor: Donham 



Inspiration: VOGUE Fashion Editors - Grace Coddington 

Student Designers: Kelli Chun, Sophia Kang, Lydia Kim, Eileen Pirkuk, Traci Rogers, Katherine Shukhman

Instructor: LoPresti 



Inspiration: VOGUE Fashion Editors - Franca Sozzani 

Student Designers: Ashley Bennett, Kaitlyn Dragicevich, Amber Heiman, Jillian Bakke, Autum Polk, Braedi Siemers 

Instructor: LoPresti 



Inspiration: VOGUE Fashion Editors - Edna Woolman Chase 

Student Designers: Lauren Doughtery, Amanda Hopper, Claire Kruljac, Christen Radford, Molly Savant, Stephanie Spencer, Michaela Villanueva, Kelsey Weaklend, Samantha Westler 

Instructor: LoPresti 



Inspiration: Museum Exhibition NYC Bird Inspiration - Pleated Woodpecker 

Student Designers: Melanie Devita, Desirae Luna, Kim Nguyen, Noella Teran 

Instructor: McCall 



Inspiration: Museum Exhibition NYC Bird Inspiration - Raven 

Student Designers: Zohal Erian, JoAnne Kim, Lisa Lee

Instructor: LoPresti 



Inspiration: Museum Exhibition NYC Bird Inspiration - Bird of Paradise 

Student Designers: Nicole De La Pena, Morgan Davee, Henrietta Gogstad, Samantha Herold, Amina Malik, Stephanie Shimon

Instructor: McCall 



Inspiration: I'm Not Your Play Thing  

Student Designers: Adi Beltran, Yumi Cho, Susan Cualler, Moira Cumpian, Michelle Deberry, Chelsea Garmshause, Irene Kim, Janeth Rivera 

Instructor: LoPresti 



Inspiration: Plastic Ocean 

Student Designers: Susanna Guan, Osvaldo Luis, Noel Olson, Jonmarie Westengard, Kaitlyn Zonfrell

Instructor: Williams 



Inspiration: Plastic Funk 

Student Designers: Caitlin Bongiorno, Tracy Castro, Delani Cervantes, Cynthia Molina, Michelle Rivera 

Instructor: Williams 



Inspiration: Plastic Never Looked So Good 

Student Designers: Alvia DeMaria, Emma Dermody, McKenna Mastin, Ariel Ruiz 

Instructor: McCall 



Inspiration: Living a Plastic Life 

Student Designers: Priscilla Enriquez, Charmine Lim, Marissa Maris, Julia Mickus, Piah Snachez 

Instructor: McCall 



Inspiration: Plastic Is the New Black 

Student Designers: Maria Pia Diona, Ashley Jackson, Anja Morgensen, Alexandria Yates 

Instructor: McCall 



Inspiration: Seeing Stars 

Student Designers: Hayle Basile, Mariela Coronell, Kelsie Leach, Rachel Manning, Jennifer Martinez, Ahyana McDonald 

Instructor: McCall 



Inspiration: Empire of Light 

Student Designers: Alyssa Alonso, Jordan Forbes, Ryan Lynch, Amy Luo, Emily Sorenson, Rosie Woodger 

Instructor: LoPresti 



Inspiration: Something's Fishy 

Student Designers: Jenna Funk, Mariah Massey, Danielle Meran, Caroline Perjohn, BB Pina 

Instructor: McCall 



Inspiration: What You Seek is Seeking You 

Student Designers: Brittany Guereque, Dalie Jiminez, Diana Mabie, Brooke Slater

Instructor: LoPresti 



Inspiration: Paper Whites

Student Designers: Gabriela Alverado, Jen Kim, Lauren Hashima, Jackie Kevorkova, Ashley Weller, Jenna Kissinger 

Instructor: McCall 



Inspiration: Paper Chase 

Student Designers: Emily Hiatt, Lindsey Nelson, Bree Lopez, Jessica Martinson, Monica Chuba, Celeste Lara 

Instructor: LoPresti 



Q&A with FIDM Graphic Design Alumna Anne Tran, Visual Graphic Designer at Forever 21


Graphic Design Alumna Anne Tran graduated from FIDM in Winter 2012 and hit the ground running. Currently a Visual Graphic Designer for Forever 21, she gave us a little insight on what she does on a day-to-day basis and offered some great advice to aspiring graphic designers. 

( What does your job entail daily?  

(Tran) "We drive store sales by creating exciting and well-informed visual directives that clearly communicate merchandising strategies." 

Read the full Q&A on the FIDM Digital Arts Blog.



Diane Von Furstenberg Discusses Textile Design

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FIDM Advisory Board member Diane von Furstenberg shares the story of her textile design inspirations with Women's Wear Daily. She got her start working at Angelo Ferretti's studio at Lake Como, Italy in the late '60s. Now her company's print archive holds 15,000 prints. What do they all share? "All my prints move," says Furstenberg. "When she wears them, a woman feels feline." Chainlink (above) is one of the top 6 classic designs.

Study the art of Textile Design at the specialized FIDM program.



Industrywatch: In-Store Tech Makes Holiday Shopping Seamless

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Tis the season for shoppers to shop—and retailers are rolling out the latest technology to make the in-store experience run smoothly. Industry analyst Kurt Kendall tells Women's Wear Daily, "retailers omnichannel efforts will stand out this season only if they serve a purpose—whether tech provides promotions targeted at a particular shopper or removes friction points from the shopping experience." Nordstrom stores (in San Jose and Seattle) and Rebecca Minkoff stores are cited for  technology that allows customers in fitting rooms to flag a sales associate and swap sizes without leaving the dressing room.

photo credit: Women's Wear Daily



Three Graphic Design Students Are Finalists in NRF Holiday Card Contest


Graphic Design Students Alexander Sales Rivera, Emily Cooper, and Lilyan Urbanczuk (pictured with Karla Maldonado, Elizabeth Poteracki, and Amanda Villa who you'll learn more about below) were all awarded as finalists in the NRF's Holiday Card Contest and will be traveling to New York in January for "Retail's Big Show." The winning design will be mailed to more than 20,000 NRF members worldwide, along with their photo and college information featured on their winning card. 


And in other NRF/FIDM news, a team of Business Management Students - Karla Maldonado, Elizabeth Poteracki, and Amanda Villa (pictured below) - made it to the second round of judging in the national NRF Student Challenge. For an entire semester, they worked to create a product idea and prepare a 10-page business plan, along with a 90-second video presentation to convince the CEO of a U.S. retailer of their choice how and why their product should be brought to market.



Behind the Scenes of Macy's Famed Holiday Windows and Creative Careers in Vis Comm


AOL has a behind the scenes look at Macy's famed holiday windows and the in-demand positions that are available in the field of Visual Communications

"Our students are taught and mentored by the industry," Lyn Tobman, chairperson of the Visual Communications department at FIDM in Los Angeles, told AOL Jobs. "We bring experts in to teach. Our courses involve getting practical experience. Our students are also required to learn and understand collaboration. To create their windows for class presentation -- which require them to research, source, build and install -- they must work in teams."

Read the rest of the story here



Two FIDM Grads Behind Popular Swimwear Line KAOHS


In July of 2013, FIDM Graduates Tess Hamilton and Ali Hoffmann launched KAOHS, a swim line inspired by the skate, boho, and surf lifestyle of Southern California. After attending their first Mercedes Benz Miami Fashion Week in July of 2014, the duo were voted "Ones to Watch" by Women's Wear Daily and gained a following after Kim Kardashian donned one of their bikinis. Made in Los Angeles, the swim line can now be found in retailers in California, Hawaii, Arizona, and Florida, as well as online



Interview: How Olivia Kim Got Nordstrom to Create a New Position

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A fascinating long interview in Fashionista with fashion maven and rock star buyer Olivia Kim describes how she turned 10 years experience at Opening Ceremony into an amazing new job at Nordstrom's corporate headquarters. With the job title Director of Creative Projects, Kim is charged with attracting younger customers and keeping them engaged, and buying from the traditional retailer. One innovation she instigated is monthly pop-in shops that can be shopped online and at certain store locations. Plus, she shops the store regularly to add items to her personally curated "OK'd by OK" part of the website. Kim's advice for fashion industry hopefuls: "The Internet has made everyone know everything. But you have to go out there, you have to go and look at clothing up close, you have to go the stores, you have to taste the food. ...You can't smell a store through the computer." Read more.



Fashion Incubator SF Accepting Applications

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The deadline for the 2015 design mentorship program at Fashion Incubator at San Francisco (FiSF) at Macy's Union Square is Friday, December 19, 2014. The program is open to fashion designers with at least one year of business in the S.F. area. The program provides work space, one-on-one mentoring, and core classes for emerging designers.



Industrywatch: Wearable Tech Promises Perfect Fit

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Will LikeAGlove, the latest entry in the effort to solve the returns problem in e-commerce, be the answer? Founders Simon Cooper and Michael Slobodkin sure hope so. According to Women's Wear Daily, the wearable garment created by the tech startup comes with sensors and an app. Owners wear the garment once, it transfers their data to a smartphone or tablet app, which then translates their measurements into accurate fit of online purchases, and fewer returns. The smart garment can be washed and shared. Inspiration for the idea came from Simon's wife, who he says purchases 3 or 4 items per week online and returns many because of poor fit. LikeAGlove "takes the guesswork out and people will be happier with purchases, says hopeful Chief Marketing Officer Jessica Insalaco.



Tweetup with FIDM Grad and Celebrity Stylist Daniel Musto on Thursday, Dec. 11


On Thursday, December 11 from 4:00-5:30 PST, FIDM is hosting an online Q&A Tweetup with recent FIDM Visual Communications Alumnus Daniel Musto, who has worked both on camera and behind-the-scenes as a professional stylist and fashion expert.

Tweetup Details

To participate in our virtual Q&A, be sure to follow @FIDM and @DanielRMusto and submit your questions using the hashtag #DanielatFIDM. Then check back at 4:00 on December 11 to see if Daniel answers your questions! Read more about Musto below.

About Celebrity Stylist Daniel Musto

As a member of the Costume Designers Guild, Musto understands the fundamentals of how to make someone look–and, by extension “feel, their very best.” His styling work is in high demand by celebrities including Jenny McCarthy, Gabourey Sidibe, Paula Abdul, Ashlee Simpson, Paris Hilton, Giuliana Rancic, Karina Smirnoff, Kendra Wilkinson and Louise Roe. Musto has also been a runway stylist for designers including John Varvatos, Jessica Simpson, and Nicole Richie.

It was Musto’s work as a stylist on runway productions for Vogue and CFDA that initially caught the eye of television producers. His creations have graced the stages of American Idol, X Factor, and America's Best Dance Crew. Musto is the stylist behind NBC's Fashion Star and Eva Longoria's series Ready for Love, and he has has appeared on television shows including Extra! and The Kris Jenner Show for his fashion expertise. Musto also stars in The Stylish, the popular premium YouTube show produced by the highly-regarded production company Magical Elves, Inc. (of Fashion Star, Project Runway, and Top Chef). Additionally, you can get a taste of his expertise as the on-camera trend expert on

As a fashion journalist, Musto has had bylines in Cosmopolitan, TVGuide, Huffington Post, and Us Weekly, where he is featured every week in the ever-popular Fashion Police feature. Musto is also passionate about his public speaking engagements at fashion schools, shopping malls, and talk shows, as well as his radio appearances. You can catch him on tour across the U.S. at participating Macy's and Neiman Marcus locations. Join Musto for a styling workshop on January 11 in Los Angeles (read details here). 



FIDM Alumnus Israel Valencia Launches Two Fashion Labels Since Graduation


Israel Valencia, FIDM Grad and owner of fashion brands In My Air and Happy Hour, visited the Los Angeles campus today to meet with the Premiere Product Development Group, an elite group of FIDM Students with access to guest speakers from the fashion industry sharing their inspiring stories of success.

The young entrepreneur graduated from FIDM with a degree in Merchandise Product Development in 2010 and has already launched two labels. His original intention when he started at FIDM was to pursue a career in menswear, but he changed his mind. He said to the students, "With the education that we get at FIDM, we really can do anything."

Well-received by the fashion community, In My Air has been featured in Cosmopolitan, InStyle, and Nylon. The high-end label has been styled with iconic brands including Louis Vuitton, Rag & Bone, and Hermès, and worn by Hannah Simone who plays Cece on TV show New Girl.

"We built a fan base," Israel said, "But it wasn't moving the way I wanted. It came down to sales." He decided to move In My Air to an online-only retail business, and launch a label with a lower price point to test that market. It's working.

He is already on season two of Happy Hour and now has 30 accounts including ModCloth.

What is the secret to his success? He said, "It's about putting in the work, using your skills, and not being afraid. That's the biggest one—not being afraid." Just being in his presence for two minutes, it is clear that he is a person who lives his life with conviction and confidence.

He credits FIDM for preparing him for his fashion career. "The amount of work FIDM gives you is perfect because you're going to have to do more," he jokingly warned the students. "I've learned how to be professional and how to be organized." 

Three years of internships were critical in his career preparation, as well. He advised the students to intern in factories so they can truly see the process with their own eyes and gain invaluable experience. Networking with sewers, cutters, and patternmakers provides a whole dimension to an education in fashion that you don't necessarily get exposure to in the classroom. He added that learning does not end with your degree in hand, either. "I'm still a student. Every day."

When asked what he wakes up every day thinking, he replied, "How fortunate and lucky I am, and how amazing my life is that I can do this."

And you know what else. When he is frustrated and needs to clear his head, he said he walks over to FIDM from his studio offices in the Fashion District and he sits in Grand Hope Park, back to his roots—where it all began. "These kids are inspiring. This place is inspiring. I come here and I know it's bigger than me. These floors. The courage and the bravery of the students. I feel the energy of it. It's a way to get grounded and balanced. FIDM is a symbol of my life. The goal is here."

HAPPY HOUR COLLECTION SS 2015 from Tim Jieh on Vimeo.



Merchandise Marketing Alumna Launches Amour Absolu Jewelry Line


Merchandise Marketing Alumna Kathryn Giarratano recently launched Amour Absolu, a jewelry collection that celebrates life's special moments and milestones. 


"During a career that included an internship in Entertainment Tonight’s Wardrobe Department, top honor’s graduate degree from FIDM (Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising) in Los Angeles, Styling Consultant for Saks Fifth Avenue in both Beverly Hills (assistant) and Cherry Creek Denver, I had always dreamt about the idea of designing my own line of fine jewelry. It was a dream without a clear vision until the birth of my first daughter, Giuliana. In searching for a piece that would symbolize this most significant addition to my life, I found that birthstones and engraved pieces were the only customizable pieces for new mothers. I wanted a piece of fine jewelry that would be beautiful and subtle, special and simple. I designed the Bar Pendant with 8 diamonds, one for each letter of her name. This would be the first piece designed in what has now become a line that was inspired by what I feel for Giuliana, unconditional love. Out of that necklace came a line of beautiful customizable pieces designed to signify the people, moments and milestones that mean most in life."



Just Accepted Fashion Design Student Hails From Dubai, UAE



Name: Rima Varghese

Age: 17

Hometown: Dubai, UAE

FIDM Major: Fashion Design

Campus and Start Date: Los Angeles, Fall 2015

Admissions Advisor: Alissa Dixon

How did your advisor help with the process? Alissa was key to my acceptance to FIDM. She spent hours going over my hundreds of emails, answering every question I could come up with and poring over every detail of my application. She was also a huge source of confidence during my application process. FIDM was my dream school but after meeting Alissa I knew this was exactly what I wanted. She was honestly one of the most helpful and supportive people I had met and I owe her a lot.

Tell us a bit about yourself. Growing up in Dubai I was always surrounded by people and cultures from around the world which has been a source of inspiration for me throughout my life. I've also spent a lot of time traveling with my family in Europe, South Africa, Australia, and South East Asia. I also spent a lot of my childhood learning competitive equestrian related sports which was sparked by my love of horses and my innate country girl nature.

As I got older, music became a part of my life and I would take any opportunity to showcase it. I also actively spend any of my free time fighting for animal rights and their protection because even they deserve a voice. One of my biggest inspirations in life would be my mother who is one the most hardworking women I know. She has dedicated her life to my brother and myself and I would like to believe that I got my determination and hard-work ethic from her. Another one of my inspirations would be my dad, who through the the life he lived taught me the importance of compassion and love. To this day I've never met anyone who can live up to the legacy he left behind and it makes me strive towards being someone like him.

What made FIDM right for you? FIDM has a curriculum that I knew would keep me challenged every day and would make me the best designer I could be. Also, all the internships available to students really builds up your contacts and experience which is essential for my career post-graduation. I know that FIDM will get me where I need and give me the future I want.

Describe your entrance project. My entrance project consisted of 5 figures -male and female- in outfits created solely by me, based on the 1980's. I had chosen the 1980's because I felt that it was a period of time that fashion was really coming into its own and was the most unusual, so that gave me a lot to work with. I was able to showcase how much of 80's fashion still inspires designers today.

What are your career goals? My goal is to work as a designer (maybe even a head designer) for a fashion powerhouse that I love such as Alexander McQueen or even a company I adore like Free People, Micheal Kors, or Jeffrey Campbell. And my dream is to one day start my own fashion house.

What do you expect to learn at FIDM? At FIDM I'm expecting to learn how to bring my designs to life on a runway from my sketches on paper. Also I hope, the skills that I would require to work as a head designer and maybe eventually start my own fashion house someday.



Chan Luu Debuts Vintage-Inspired Holiday 2014 Jewelry Collection


Celebrity jewelry designer and FIDM Graduate Chan Luu has unveiled an online-only, vintage-inspired jewelry collection for Holiday 2014. Featuring champagne diamonds, freshwater pearls, or Swarovski Elements© crystals, these unique pieces come with a free jewelry travel pouch and will only be available as long as supplies last.



SF MPD Student Wins Cotton Inc.'s Demands of Denim Scholarship


Merchandise Product Development Student Heath Owen, who attends the San Francisco campus and will graduate in Fall 2015, is the winner of Cotton Inc.'s Demands of Denim Scholarship. "To enter, I had to design a product made completely of cotton," explains Heath, a Phi Theta Kappa member, student council secretary, and Mode magazine model. "After coming up with the concept, I had to design a portfolio to present my idea. Included in the portfolio was an essay all about my garment, a swatch of my garment, and a technical flat of my design." Entrants' portfolios were judged in Los Angeles, and then the top ten finalists were announced.

The illustrious group received an all-expenses paid trip to North Carolina to tour Cotton Inc., Dystar Corporation, VF Corporation, and Cone Mills. After their trip, the top ten had to create their garments for a panel of industry judges. "My design was a cross between a denim vest and a puffer vest," Heath explains. "The vest is made with recycled denim insulation (the same insulation used in low cost housing such as houses by Habitat for Humanity). My idea was to have a garment that could be a face for the concept of recycling denim, as recycling is something that I am very proud of."

When Heath was announced as the winner of the $10,000 scholarship, he says he was "in utter disbelief" since the other designs were executed so well. "I am proud of all of the contestants and hope to maintain a friendship with them all," adds Heath, who hopes to continue his work as the creative director and partner in his company, "I also would love to create my own brand of women’s dresses." FIDM Student Robyn Sarile came in second place and Ron Rong Ma was recognized as Most Innovative. Congratulations to all of the finalists!

Photo Credit: Cory Maryott



Rebecca Minkoff's First SF Boutique Will Feature Tech Innovations Developed By eBay


Designer Rebecca Minkoff (pictured with her brother and CEO Uri Minkoff) is opening her first San Francisco boutique in December. The "connected store" will feature technology innovations, developed by eBay, including large touch-screen mirrors, a 122-inch touch wall, new iOS app, and "magic" fitting rooms that could revolutionize the retail shopping experience.

Learn more at SF Gate



Study Tours: Florence's Best Shopping Streets

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Florence packs everything in one small city: Renaissance masterpieces, romantic architecture, perfect coffee, AND world famous shopping. Here are the four streets not to miss:

Via de Torna Buoni is home to the luxe labels: Gucci, Pucci, Versace, Pomellato, Hermes, and the Ferragamo Shoe museum.

Via dei Calzaiuoli mixes luxury with contemporary brands: Chanel, Sisley, the Disney store, and handbag maker Furla.

Via del Corso has smaller one-off boutiques and artisans like Piero Pulilti, a maker of fine shirts and ties.

San Lorenzo Market is heaven for international bargain hunters: leather jackets and wallets are displayed alongside kid's toys, scarves, and sweaters.

FIDM Students: To join the Study Tour to Rome and learn more about other FIDM Study Tours go to the FIDM portal.



Experience Pre-College at FIDM This Summer and Earn College Credit


High School Students:

This summer, New Worlds Emerge invites you to join the premier fashion and design college on the west coast, FIDM/Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising, to develop your passion for fashion design, graphic design, filmmaking, trend spotting, styling, and merchandising. For those interested in film and fashion, there is no place like Los Angeles: the motion picture capital of the world, the number one center for fashion manufacturing in the United States, including the film and television costume design, action sports, sportswear, and premium denim industries.

FIDM’s immersive hands-on workshops offer students an opportunity to learn fashion from prominent FIDM instructors at the visually stunning L.A. campus. Starting to zoom in on your fashion direction? Be part of an exclusive fashion program that will bring you closer to your dreams.

Featured Experiences:

Housing: Live at UCLA Experience what it’s like to live on campus at a top public university like UCLA.

History of 20th Century Designers Spend each morning studying 20th century fashion designers and their impact through the decades in couture and ready-to-wear, analyzing how key figures in fashion design have influenced the styles and trends in line development of each decade since 1850, with an emphasis on the last 30 years of the 20th century.

Art of Fashion Illustration Renowned FIDM Instructor and author Nancy Riegelman will teach her signature hands-on, one-day drawing method for rendering the nine-head fashion figure. The author of definitive textbooks 9 Heads: A Guide to Drawing Fashion and Colors for Modern Fashion, Riegelman turns novices into quick sketch artists – an indispensable fashion industry skill.

FIDM Museum & Galleries Tour Tour the renowned FIDM Museum & Galleries to view an exhibition in the making: the highly anticipated 9th Annual Outstanding Art of Television Costume Design Exhibition featuring Primetime Emmy®-nominated costumes from popular television shows. During a behind-the-scenes tour, gain an understanding of the details of preparing a museum exhibition and also view costumes from the historic Hollywood Costume Collection, followed by a tour of our award-winning college campus.

Disneyland at Twilight Use the morning to relax and work on your business plan. Jump on board as we head to Disneyland, the happiest place on earth! Spend the afternoon on rides or walking around the shops of Downtown Disney. View the nighttime show and firework spectacular.

Santa Monica Pier Wander along the beach of Santa Monica as you venture up to the pier, a 100-year-old landmark. Have fun on the Pacific Park rides, enjoying magnificent views from the iconic Ferris wheel. Venture over to the world-famous alfresco 3rd Street Promenade for shopping at national stores, name brand clothing, and boutiques in the heart of downtown Santa Monica.

Trend Spotting/Trend Forecasting A dynamic industry professional and FIDM Instructor will lead a lively discussion about the way trends migrate from haute couture, to fast fashion, to street style. Be introduced to the methodology for trend tracking, forecasting and analysis used by the global fashion and design industries.

Los Angeles Fashion Trends Tour Apply your knowledge to real-world scenarios on a tour of Melrose Avenue, visiting Fred Segal and other notable fashion destinations in Los Angeles for an afternoon of trend spotting and retail marketing research.

Learn more about New Worlds Emerge Pre-College at FIDM



Social Ambassador Attends Diane Von Furstenberg Book Event

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 “It’s never too late to be the woman you want to be.” Those are some of the inspiring words of wisdom proclaimed by Diane Von Furstenberg at the talk for the release of her new book, The Woman I Wanted to Be. Many women of all ages gathered at the Skirball Cultural Center last night to hear Diane in conversation with Maria Shriver.

Diane’s words were both inspiring and moving, but her witty and down-to-earth personality is what makes her so relatable to all women. The designer spoke about her mother, the most important person in shaping her life, and who helped her become the woman she wanted to be.  She shared with the audience many life lessons that were inspired by the strength and nature of her mother, a Holocaust survivor.

Alex ambassador

DVF’s brand is all about empowering women, which was made clear when she told the audience that the most important relationship you can have with anyone is with yourself. She even admitted, “When you go to bed at night, first wink at yourself in the mirror, that’s what I do!” Attendees left the event infused with confidence and enablement—just as she intends her clothing to do.

Report by  FIDM Social Ambassador Alex Neil

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