Beach Riot Wins Swim Brand of the Year at SIMA Awards (Interview)


Beach Riot, the popular swimwear line founded by FIDM Graduate Nicole Hanriot, recently won Swim Brand of the Year at the Surf Industry Manufacturers Association (SIMA) Awards last week. We recently chatted with Nicole about the exciting win.

How did it feel to win Swim Brand of the Year? It was a huge shock and honor for us to win. To be nominated with our peers is an honor in itself. We will be celebrating this weekend in New York City at the Axis Trade show. 

How do you feel FIDM helped prepare you to run and design your own business? Being a graduate from FIDM has helped in so many ways. I love how most of my instructors were working in the industry at the time as teaching at FIDM; it really helped prepare us for the real world. I am so grateful for all the tools I use on a daily basis that FIDM taught me. 

What are your future goals for Beach Riot? We just launched our first ready to wear contemporary apparel collection which is very exciting. My goals for the future are to just keep striving ahead and grow Beach Riot into a world wide contemporary lifestyle company.



SF Fashion Design Students Design For Crowdfunding Retailer Betabrand


During the Spring 2014 quarter, Fashion Design Students (now alumni) from Computer Pattern II teamed up with retail clothing company and crowdfunding platform Betabrand. "It was a 'real time' experience working within a new business model for the garment/product manufacturing industry," explains Fashion Design Department Coordinator Janice Paredes. "Once their original designs were critiqued by Betabrand's directors, the students created production patterns and graded sizing on computer software using fit and customer information from Betabrand."


The designs selected by the Betabrand (Think Tank) customers have now been fully funded and will be produced. The FIDM designers are Nicole Spyt (Morning-Mess Jacket) and Elizabeth Irwin (360 Reversible Dress). "It is especially exciting because these designs were fully funded before the 30-day funding period deadline," adds Janice. "Students watched each day as the votes and comments were submitted. The Beta-Go-Go Dress is currently in crowdfunding, too, and you can watch it in real time."


In 2013, Betabrand launched a crowdfunding platform, similar to Kickstarter, so that users can crowdsource clothing concepts and prototypes into actual products. Since the inception of the crowdfunding platform, Betabrand has funded almost 100 garments. A feature of production is the turnaround from initial design to sellable article – which can be in four to eight weeks. 



Just Accepted High School Junior to Pursue His Dreams at FIDM Orange County



Name: Jason Tirtorahardjo

Age: 17

Hometown: Anaheim, CA

FIDM Major: Fashion Design

FIDM Campus and Start Date: Orange County, Fall 2016

Admissions Advisor: Shirley McDonald

How did your advisor help with the process? I couldn't have asked for a better advisor. Shirley led me through the entire application process with ease and encouraged me to come to her if I had any questions. Shirley was extremely supportive of me, becoming just as excited about my acceptance as I was. Even after my application process, Shirley continues to guide me, urging me to use my creative ability to earn scholarships.

Tell us a bit about yourself. Art has always been a major part of my life. I can easily lose myself for hours on end working on a project. I've been doodling since I could hold a crayon and I continue to do so. I've played the piano for about 10 years and am absolutely terrified of performing in front of people, but I continue to play because its actually really fun when people aren't watching you. My inspirations range from amazing designers like Alexander McQueen, Jeremy Scott, and Iris van Herpen to prominent painters like Vincent van Gogh and Mondrian. Going to art museums is an obsession of mine; seeing a famous art piece in person is surreal. 

What are your proudest accomplishments so far? Growing as an artist and eventually getting accepted to FIDM is my proudest accomplishment thus far. There have been many times where I, like everyone else, have doubted my own potential, but learning to think outside the box and not worry so much has really helped me. I definitely surprised myself when I was accepted to FIDM, and overcoming my self-doubt has given me a new perspective.

What made FIDM right for you? FIDM, unlike other schools, allows its students to dive right into their desired major right away. I really like that I'll be able to start learning skills that pertain to my career once I begin, unlike other art schools that require its students to take general art classes first. Another aspect that made FIDM stand out to me was it's immense library that I can't wait to fully explore. Along with that, all the campuses are creative spaces that are sure to inspire my own imagination.

Describe your entrance project. For my entrance project I was asked to create an inspiration board and six sketches inspired by the items on the board. Lady Gaga, Alexander McQueen, and Andy Warhol were the most prominent subjects on my inspiration board, but artists like Mondrian and designers like Iris van Herpen and Gareth Pugh were also included. For my six sketches I decided to take a more graphic approach, using different prints and patterns. My finished project was featured on FIDM OC's Instagram.

What are your career goals? My ultimate goal would be to have my own fashion house while also being the artistic director for another high fashion brand. I'd want to be like Alexander Wang, who not only has his own brand, but is the director at Balenciaga. Wang reflects many of the traits that I aspire to be: he's young, extremely creative, and fresh.

What do you expect to learn at FIDM?  Besides improving both my technical skill and creativity, I would like to learn how the fashion industry works "behind the scenes," and how fashion designers plan and execute their runway shows, and put together collections. I would also like to learn how to better convey the ideas in my head onto a piece of paper, since I have so many ideas that I just don't know how to get out.



FIDM Textiles & Materials Manager Interviewed for SF's Smart Fabric Conference


Kristine Upesleja, FIDM's Textiles & Materials Manager, was recently interviewed for the upcoming Smart Fabrics + Wearable Technology Conference, May 11-13, 2015, in San Francisco, where she will be presenting. Kristine says that she is most excited about the biotechnology movement, materials/technology that can read our mind and display emotions, the possibilities of 3-D printing, "hearables," and digital retail. 

Read the interview here




Just Accepted Fashion Design Student Dreams of Being a Bridal Designer


Name: Gianna Mueller

Age: 17

Hometown: Denver, Colorado

FIDM MajorFashion Design

FIDM Campus and Start Date: Los Angeles, Fall 2015

Admissions Advisor: Cathy Chambers

How did your advisor help with the process? Cathy was so helpful. She walked me through the whole application process and was there for me every step of the way. I could call or email her with any question or concerns I had and she was always so helpful and supportive.

Tell us a bit about yourself: I have always been creative. I sew, I knit, I make jewelry, and I love to draw and doodle. I also love nail art; I think it is so great to create a little masterpiece on your nails. I also love the outdoors and being active. Whether it's hiking and biking or working out at the gym, I’m happy. As far as inspiration goes, brides are so inspiring to me. It’s always been my dream to design wedding dresses. The bride and her love and enthusiasm for her wedding is the most inspiring thing to me.

What are your proudest accomplishments so far? One of my proudest accomplishments so far would be competing in the Goodwill Good Exchange fashion show. It was so amazing to design and create something and then watch it go down the runway and to see how people were reacting to it. Even though I didn’t win, I was so proud of myself for accomplishing such an amazing piece of art. [Read Gianna's interview about the Goodwill Good Exchange fashion show on the Fashion Club Blog.]

What made FIDM right for you? For as long as I can remember, fashion design is all I have ever wanted to do. FIDM is right for me because I know that it can help me achieve my goals. I love how career-oriented it is, and how the curriculum is based off the industry. I feel that it will help me to blossom and really prepare me for my future.

Describe your entrance project. For my entrance project, I designed an eight-piece, spring wedding dress collection. I used colors and fabrics that break the standard “white gown” to create a fresh, lively, sexy dresses to enhance the bride's creative side. I was so proud and excited about these designs because I really got to express myself and put my creative ideas into such an important piece of fashion.

What are your career goals? My goal is to become a wedding dress designer. It is such a thrill to think about the idea of designing something that will be so special to someone and add on to the beauty and excitement of a wedding. Once I start to thrive in wedding dresses, I would love to branch out and start designing haute couture evening wear and maybe even design a shoe and accessory collection.

What do you expect to learn at FIDM? At FIDM, I want to learn as much as I possibly can to help me achieve my goals. I expect to learn the basics of design, how to design and produce a collection, and how to keep up with and discover new trends (and of course hundreds of other things that will help me become the best designer I can be.)



Tweetup with FIDM Grad, Professional Figure Skater, and Fashion Designer Michael Kuluva on Mar. 12


Frozen meets fashion… sort of. On Thursday, March 12 from 4:00 - 5:30 PST, FIDM is hosting an online Q&A Tweetup with FIDM Fashion Design Alumnus Michael Kuluva. Kuluva is a professional figure skater and the Creative Director of Tumbler and Tipsy, a Los Angeles-based brand that has been featured in more than 100 major publications and media outlets, including Vogue Italia, People, and The Today Show.  

Tweetup Details

To participate in our virtual Q&A, be sure to follow @FIDM and @MichaelKuluva and submit your questions using the hashtag #MichaelatFIDM. Then check back at 4:00 on March 12 to see if Kuluva answers your questions! Read more about Kuluva below and in our recent interview with the designer here.

About Professional Figure Skater & Fashion Designer Michael Kuluva

From a young age, Michael Kuluva worked his way up to become one of the youngest, most talented and recognized names in professional figure skating history, touring in over more than 600 cities in 40 countries. Since studying fashion at FIDM, Kuluva has become a designer and stylist to musicians, red carpet celebrities and Olympic athletes.

Kuluva’s “show-stopping, jaw-dropping” brand Tumbler and Tipsy is unique in its form, exclusive in its style, extraordinary in its appearance, and quickly paving its way to the forefront of today’s global fashion scene. Tumbler and Tipsy by Michael Kuluva was featured as an Emerging Designer at Los Angeles Fashion Week S/S 2012 with rave reviews.

For its spring 2013 collection, Tumbler and Tipsy partnered with "Just Dance,” the number one dance video game in the world from Ubisoft. Tumbler and Tipsy by Michael Kuluva was the first brand/designer EVER to bring any virtual video game to the real-life runway at New York Fashion Week in spring 2013. Pop star Cher Lloyd opened the 2013 Spring show with her hit single "Want You Back" while celebrities strutted the infamous catwalk for this history-making fashion week show, which included Kendall Jenner, Olympian Alex Morgan, Entertainment Tonight's Christina McLarty and G4's television host Kristin Adams. The dazzling fashion show featured 47 unique looks for women and men and included the "Just Dance 4" video game-inspired looks, along with custom Tumbler and Tipsy "Monster Headphones."



Hear a Forecast Presentation by Donegar Group Creative Director David Wolfe at FIDM


FIDM Students are invited to join FIDM's Alumni Association for an entertaining trend presentation, "Launchpad to the Future," by Doneger Group Creative Director, David Wolfe. Innovation fuels every field, and technology continues as the driving force affecting everything from fashion design and textile development to color theory and retailing. David is the apparel industry’s most notable and quoted authority on fashion, color, and trend forecasting. Just back from his week at MAGIC, the apparel industry trade show, he will give a presentation featuring pictures from Doneger’s exclusive trend reports.

Date: Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Time: 6:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.

Cost: Free

Location: FIDM Annex 605 West Olympic Blvd Los Angeles, 90015, 3rd Floor Room A332

Parking: Located on the main campus or at surrounding lots

RSVP: Seating is limited. Please RSVP to Carrie Shay,



Pretty Little Liars Costume Designer Mandi Line to Appear at SOURCING at MAGIC (Interview)


Heading to MAGIC? On February 18, 2015, from 2:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m., FIDM Graduate Mandi Line, the costume designer for Pretty Little Liars, will be on an exciting panel for SOURCING at MAGIC. Entitled "SOURCING HOLLYWOOD: How Costume Designers Make TV & Film Come To Life," Mandi will appear with fellow costume designers Lyn Paolo and Joe Kucharski, and celebrity stylist and FIDM Grad Daniel Musto. We recently caught up with Mandi to chat about her exciting career in Hollywood.

What is your design process when it comes to a new character or entire show? Well, the long and short of it is, I talk to the writer of the show, we go back and forth, and then I do some tear sheets to show her what I'm feeling. On Pretty Little Liars I am so blessed that they really trust my gut. That is a special gift to have someone that actually lets you do your job. I have found that many times and I am so so blessed. 

How do you think costume design is influencing designer collections or style in general? They are saying that street used to influence the runway, but now fashion designers are even saying film and TV have changed the face of retail. Fashion pulls from all walks of life, even the make believe ones.

What has been your approach with PLL? Why do you think it has been so successful? From the beginning I gained the network and writers trust with the attitude that I could promise them one of the best dressed shows on TV. They weren't sure that that was what they were going for. But after the first season, Us Weekly said we were the best dressed cast and the first show since Sex and the City to be considered for contemporary series best costumes. After that they put their hands in the air and said "well go with it" and now with Twitter and live tweeting we have been named "the show that changed the face of television." The viewer feels like everything from the actors to the sets to the wardrobe are accessible. Social media and the timing of Pretty Little Liars could not have been better. 

How did you know that you wanted to work in costume design? I knew I wanted to work in costume because after I stopped modeling I knew all the behind-the-scenes hustle and bustle of fashion and knew I needed to stick with that world. Plus, my shopping addiction had to play out somewhere with other people's money. I say you really either have it or you don't. I have to be a gypsy and a therapist on top of knowing clothes. And just because you dress well doesn't mean you are cut out for this.

How did FIDM prepare you for your career? Bottom line, FIDM got me my first job as an intern on a film. I owe my "in" to them. I owe my surviving to my heart too.

This year’s sourcing show runs from February 16-19, 2015 and as always, MAGIC offers an un-paralleled seminar series with over 50+ sessions led by 70+ executive-level speakers. View the full list here.

Photo Credit: Gregory Metcalf



Just Accepted Fashion Design Student Left a Successful Hairdressing Career to Pursue Her Dreams



Name: Shan-Chu Isabel Lotz

Age: 26

Hometown: Taipei, Taiwan

Previous Work: Hairstylist at Toni & Guy Hairdressing Newport Beach, Cristophe Salon Newport Beach, Studio DC Laguna Beach, and Salon Gregorie’s Newport Beach.

FIDM Major: Fashion Design

Start Date: July, 2015

Admissions Advisor: Seung Kim

How did your advisor help with the process? She asked me what my life plan was, and gave me all the information I need for the school so I could make the right decision. A year later, I quit my career at the salon after nine years and decided to focus on my next goal. I emailed Mrs. Kim right away and she was there for me. She walked me through every step, answered all my questions, and showed me around the Los Angeles campus. Even after I was accepted to FIDM, she was so happy for me like my family. I am so grateful to have her by my side during this process.

Tell us a bit about yourself. I am optimistic, artistic, and impatient. I love learning and exploring new things in life. I enjoy playing drums, tennis, and golf, learning new languages, and taking Pilates and self-defense lessons. My favorite thing to do is to spend time and travel with my husband and family.

What are your proudest accomplishments so far? I have the best family and am married to the man of my dreams. I'm proud of being a successful hairdresser, working at the upscale hair salons of Orange County, with the top and most creative hairdressers before age of 26.

What made FIDM right for you? FIDM is right for me because it offers a career-oriented and reality-based fashion design education taught by industry professionals. I believe that it is very important to have a connection with the real fashion world, even while being a student in school.

What are your career goals? I want to be a professional fashion designer who is intimately involved in the process of fashion design. I also want to have and build a well-connected network in the fashion industry. I am looking forward to be a part of the program as I fulfill my dreams, accomplish my goals, and begin my career in fashion design.

What do you expect to learn at FIDM? My expectation for my FIDM education is to become a professional fashion designer. I am looking forward to learning how to design and make clothes from scratch as this has always being my passion. I am also very excited to meet and work with new people that share my passion.



From the FIDM Library: Winter 2015 Style Report

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Even though technology is attracting consumers to a “web room” approach, meaning they are shopping online or on mobile for the best deals before going to a physical store, a “see and feel” attitude is permeating each experience. Millennials and boomers both are demanding convenience and value, with the latter wanting on-the-go spending opportunities, since they are traveling more.

Sustainable Fashion & Food

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The socially conscious shopper is gaining momentum, looking for products tied to a charity or to a cause. This has led to more companies expanding their online and in-person giving programs, for example, recycling unwanted clothes in exchange for a discount on new merchandise.

Consumers are recognizing the benefits of a plant-based diet, not only for its health attributes but for ecological reasons, and some start-ups and established businesses are offering a bigger choice in the non-meat realm.  The number of hipster farmers is on the rise, as more young people are starting their own specialized farms based on organic, sustainable practices, and tying in a retail and experiential component, such as farm dinner events hosted by the growers. This new vision in farming opens up opportunities for the future of food. Farming on other planets is in the foreseeable future, but if a paradigm shift happens away from genetically modified and heavily fertilized crops, perhaps we can sustain life on this planet in a healthy, holistic way. However, this remains to be seen.

Women’s Fashion

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Tailoring is on the scene in suits and shirts for both genders. Pant suits are seen in traditional materials—wool, gabardine—but also in relaxed fit fabrics such as Ponte and jersey. The topcoat becomes an accessory, and reminds us of vintage inspirations from forties menswear.

Techno modern textiles with an “athleisure” concept merge the casual and the athletic into new ways of being leisurely. Technology makes us warmer or cooler with nanotechnology ever advancing. It also makes us more conveniently ‘in the know’ with cellular and Internet devises built into garments or accessories.

Fashion and footwear designs become a playful pastiche of color, texture, and embellishments, and fur (real and faux) is seen for both. Olive is a spring neutral that sets off white and citrus shades.  The colors of the old masters, such as deep reds, smoked rosin, dark espresso, coral orange, and gold moss dominates fall 2016. Nature is a strong motif, as seen in mossy, cracked, rusted, and weathered finishes.

Knitwear has become like soft sculpture using processes that create organic, tactile forms in loose and flowing silhouettes, with materials resembling coral, sea shells, and ocean detritus.

Also inspired by the sea are nautical designs (see photo at top) with a twist; traditional navy and white stripes in tops and over-sized pants.   

Space Style

Geared toward space travel, the ultimate uncharted expedition, functional coatings and weatherproofing treatments abound for men and women. Heavier fabrics are taking precedence as protection from the elements here on earth. Designs are puffed up like sleeping bags, and literally inflated, creating a safe sense of a cocoon or tent. There is a high-pile glacial feeling in colors of frosty white and gray, and various arrays of real and faux fur. On the more mysterious end are hues of black, forest green, and deep blue. Nano-weight textiles and mid-weight garments worn in layers appeal to active and street wear markets. Material finishes are either smooth, snowy, and ethereal or gritty, speckled, and distressed for a raw, eroded feeling.

Men’s Style

Sixties mod styling and eighties mannish tailoring lives alongside off-kilter and purposely out of proportion silhouettes, lending a playful mood. Pattern mixes, such as checks with polka dots or plaids with diagonal stripes, further enhance the play. Sailor and yachting looks in white horizontal stripes, and weekend clothes of rolled-up trousers and layers of shirts with heavy gauge sweaters, have a 1920s Gatsby feel. Denim is worn in layers; jeans with chambray shirts or T- shirts, denim jackets or contrasting trench coats on top. A colorful bandana or sixties-inspired vest lends even more roguish dash. 


As in men’s and women’s fashions, stripes are infiltrating furnishings. Painterly and saturated striped bright hues are popping up from soft furnishings, ceramics, and tableware to wallpaper and upholstery. Paint splatters, tie-dye, and abstract shapes also in bright and cheerful tones give contrast to hand-drawn designs, text designs (e.g.: inspirational messages on pillows and ceramics), gold accents, and textured whites.

Colors are either very pale (ocher, ivory) or very dark (red, sienna).  Moody dark tones can be accentuated with bright highlights for originality. Graphic design is proving a strong influence, in bold and original patterns and color ways for residential and commercial settings. Easy-assembly furniture is fun, low-key, and makes it possible for the average person to put together tables, chairs, and other furniture with visible joints reminiscent of some of the master furniture makers from the past, but with a modern twist.

Material Innovations

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New uses for traditional crafts and materials are developing; for example using luffa (the gourd used for sponges) for medical splints, packaging, and acoustic wall tiles, which can be dyed using the wastewater from the denim-dying industry. Another stylish yet environmentally friendly idea uses PET (plastic) bottles for lamp shades.






40 FIDM Grads Who Have Amazing Careers In the Entertainment Industry


Awards Season is here!

...and we're celebrating by sharing a list of 40 FIDM grads who are working behind-the-scenes in Hollywood to create costumes for your favorite films and TV shows, designing gowns for the red carpet, and more.


Mary Claire Hannan, Costume Designer, The Fault in Our Stars

Marlene Stewart, Costume Designer, Oblivion, Date Night, Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian

Soyon An, Costume Designer, Step Up: All In 

Mona May, Costume Designer, CluelessAmerican Reunion, Zookeeper

“I constantly tell people about all of the new and amazing programs offered by FIDM. The college is at the forefront of integrating media and technology with the many programs and degrees that they offer.” – Jill Ohanneson, Costume Designer, Revenge

Kyle Brosius (Art Director), Kyle Thorsen (Lead Motion Graphics Designer) and Justin Hamilton, (Lead VFX Designer), Greenhaus GFX creating trailers for films like Maleficent, 22 Jump Street, Oz the Great and Powerful, and HBO series Girls.

Trish Summerville, Costume Designer, Gone Girl, The Hunger Games: Catching Fire, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo


Jessica Carpenter, Costumer, Ender’s Game, Piranha 3D

Bérénice Eveno, Cinematography Apprentice, The Dark Knight Rises

Shelli Nishino, Costumer, Man of Steel, After Earth

Kaitlyn Wood, Buyer, The Call, Hitchcock

“FIDM is great because almost all of your instructors are currently working in the industry. You can pick their brains and I was able to have some amazing internships.” – Emma Verdugo, Set Decoration Coordinator, Saving Mr. Banks and Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day.

Michelle D’Antonio, Specialty Costumer, The Hunger Games: Mockingjay

Trayce Gigi Field, Costume Designer, 2 Broke Girls

Mandi Line, Costume Designer, Pretty Little Liars

Eileen Cox Baker, Costume Designer, CSI: Crime Scene Investigation 

Suzy Magnin, Key Costumer, The Mentalist

“At FIDM, I learned the diverse aspects of costume design, from history and research to sketching, construction, crafts, budget continuity, and the etiquette of this sophisticated, hands-on profession.” – Francine Lecoultre, Costume Textile Artist, Fast & Furious 7, Girl With the Dragon Tattoo; Textile Artist, Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb

Greg LaVoi, Costume Designer, Major Crimes, The Closer 

Kristi Hoffman, Assistant Costume Designer, Dancing with the Stars

Nancy Au, Costume Supervisor, BridesmaidsBlended, Inside Llewyn Davis, This Is 40


Halina Siwolop, Set Decorator, Masters of Sex

Giovanna Ottobre-Melton, Costume Designer, Gang Related, Mob City

Christine Bean, Costume Designer, Blacklist, Smash

Sarah Stimpson, Art Department Coordinator, The Neighbors

Danielle Colding, Winner, HGTV’s Design Star

Desiree Hartsock, Star, The Bachelorette

Casey Noble, Host, HGTV’s Design on a Dime

Jonathan Gitlin (Creative Director), Mario Hernandez (Senior Motion Graphics Designer), and Ryan Verseman (Motion Graphics Producer) at Create Advertising developing trailers forTammy, Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day, and Netflix original series Orange is the New Black.

 “As soon as I walked into the lobby of FIDM I could sense the feeling of creativity and knew that this was where I could acquire and knowledge and develop the skills to achieve my dream.” – Michelle Liu, Set Costumer, Jersey Boys, Glee, The Bling Ring, and Avatar.

Daniel Musto, Stylist and Costume Designer, Fashion Star and The Kris Jenner Show

Ali Matilla, Set Decorator, Real Husbands of Hollywood



Teen Wolf star Arden Cho accessorized her MTV VMAs look with a chrome Farbod Barsum ostrich leg clutch. Farbod, a graduate of FIDM, has celebrity clients such as Christina Hendricks, Molly Sims, and Mena Suvari, among others.  


Sports Illustrated cover girl Chrissy Tiegen (above), who is married to singer John Legend, was a red carpet sensation at last year's Academy Awards. She chose a voluminous black strapless gown with an abstract pink floral print from Monique Lhuillier's Fall 2014 collection. Recognized as one of the world’s foremost fashion and bridal designers, Lhuillier has dressed Drew Barrymore, Reese Witherspoon, Halle Berry, and Kristen Stewart, among others. 


Model-designer Camila Alves, who is married to Matthew McConaughey, stunned on the red carpet at the Andy Roddick Foundation Gala and Concert in Austin, Texas. Her bright turquoise maxi wrap dress with a thigh high split was designed by FIDM Graduate Kevan Hall. Hall has created red carpet looks for Charlize Theron, Salma Hayek, Sharon Stone, Angela Bassett, and Celine Dion.

Everyone from Jennifer Lopez and Kim Kardashian to Demi Lovato and Eva Longoria has been photographed wearing an Ina Soltani design.

Harlyn designer Maria Stanley has seen her contemporary collection worn by the likes of Beyonce, Kate Hudson, Sienna Miller, and fellow FIDM Alumna Lauren Conrad. 

Celebrity Stylist Taylor Jacobson has dressed stars such as Naya Rivera, Kate Beckinsale, Jon Hamm, and Toni Colette for red carpet appearances.

Feeling inspired? Click here to request more information about attending FIDM. 



Links We Love


Spring/Summer Couture bloomed big this week in Paris where Chanel’s mad hatter creations took center stage.Vogue has full details on Karl Lagerfeld’s low rise skirts and cropped jackets that prompted the designer to proclaim, “The stomach is the new cleavage!”

The runway also sprouted some wild flowers; Raf Simons’ designs for Christian Dior were a dizzying collage of several decades: 50’s tailored pastels layered under late 70’s club scene relics replete with New-Wave plastic coats and vinyl boots. 

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As East Coasters weather a tremendous storm, perhaps they can survive stylishly with help from the ever cool citizens of Stockholm. The Swedes bundled up gracefully for fashion week.                                   

On the winter-less West Coast, Californians are free to wear our jeans and T’s. Thankfully model/journalist/ TV Host Alexa Chung has upgraded our Golden State’s sunny denim lineage. In collaboration with AG Jeans, Chung launched her 70’s Sunset Strip/ 90’s classics inspired line here in Los Angeles.

In light of improved relations with Cuba, we can’t help but think what this means for future industry and what new opportunities could emerge for FIDM entrepreneurs. Cuba has long been an eclectic nucleus of style from its preserved tropical vintage and beachy linen to the bling of Habanero street wear.

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Even before the recent policy change, Cuba has influenced the White House- at least inside closets. First Lady Michelle Obama has long modeled the designs of Cuban-Americans, even to meet the Queen of England.

Hollywood award season is happening and the Oscar for best costumes may be a tight race between Into The Woods and The Grand Budapest Hotel. Here’s a look into how movie stories of this year spoke through costume

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As January nears its end, do you feel the rosy flush of Valentines Day tinge your cheeks? Maybe it’s because of all the 50 Shades of Grey billboards you've seen and the makeup trends the film has inspired.

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A Chat With Fashion Design Grad Michael Kuluva of Tumbler and Tipsy


Fashion Design Graduate and professional figure skater Michael Kuluva is Creative Director of Tumbler and Tipsy, the L.A.-based brand that has been featured in over 100 publications and media outlets, including Vogue Italia, People, and The Today Show

Where were you born/raised? I was born in Missoula, Montana, but I was raised in Los Angeles since I was three months old. I call myself a native.

How did you first hear about FIDM? While looking into many campuses around the U.S. that focused on my passion for a Fashion Design program plus a degree, I came across FIDM since it was a local school. I really loved the contemporary, high tech campus, and that the instructors are specialized in their field from the industry so they were teaching us exactly what was happening. There were also opportunities outside the campus for students in all majors.

When did you start Tumbler & Tipsy and how did your figure skating career influence the line? I started Tumbler and Tipsy in the Fall of 2009, so it will be six years this February. My figure skating career influenced my label in so many ways, from the vibrant neon sequins to having skating stars such as Sasha Cohen, Johnny Weir, Tara Lipinski, Sarah Hughes, Mirai Nagasu, Adam Rippon, and many others wearing Tumbler and Tipsy on the red carpets, sitting front row at Fashion Week, or even walking our New York Fashion Week runways. I have now gone on to design for professional figure skating tours in Europe and also for international competitive skaters.

Michael pictured on the runway with Kendall Jenner

How do you feel FIDM helped prepare you for your exciting career? I feel FIDM gave me the foundation to go anywhere in the fashion industry. Being a Creative Director, I am able to expand the Tumbler and Tipsy brand with my knowledge from FIDM, which translates into our overall brand presence, sketching or drawing the new collection digitally, style forecasting, pattern making, manufacturing, hand sewing gowns, the history of fashion plus so much more. I use the knowledge I received from FIDM in my daily life as a fashion designer.

What can we expect to see for Spring 2015? Spring/Summer 2015 is exciting this year with a lot of the women's look becoming more androgynous with trends having the more "boyish" looks. Comfortable Bermuda shorts are going to be all the rage being paired with cropped printed tank tops. Expect to see a lot of the color pink throughout the season in every designers collection plus look for the "Amazon Jungle" theme coming around this summer especially in the RTW swimwear collections.



Innovative Materials Conference Comes to San Diego February 2-7, 2015


The 5th annual Innovative Materials Conference will be held at FIDM San Diego from February 2-7, 2015. Hosted by the Library, the conference features the latest innovations in the textiles and materials industries. Visiting curator Kristine Upesleja will be on hand to discuss these unique items. 

You're invited to enjoy refreshments and hear from guest speaker and LED costume designer Janet Hansen, who has worked with Britney Spears, Daft Punk and the Rockettes, on Tuesday, February 3, 2015, from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. (RSVP by January 30th to 

Open to the public on February 7, 2015, from 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m., during FIDM's Open House. FIDM Faculty may arrange class tours by contacting 



Product Development Student and Sneaker Customizer Featured in Toyota Video



Merchandise Product Development Student Devlin Braswell of F.B.C.C. (Fly Boy Couture Club) has been customizing sneakers since the 1990s. His imaginative designs and commitment to helping the homeless earned him the attention of Toyota Corolla's video series, "My Path to Success." The U.S. military veteran and father shares his love of sneakers and what drives him.

Watch the inspirational video clip here



Just Accepted Fashion Design Student Wants to Give Back



Name: Karolina Latek

Age: 19

Hometown: London, Ontario, Canada

Previous College: Colorado Mesa University

FIDM Major: Fashion Design

FIDM Campus and Start Date: Fall 2015 - LA Campus

Admissions Advisor: Joleen Harris

How did your advisor help with the process? Jolene was wonderful; she actually has been working with me for over a year. She is very kind, light-hearted, and extremely helpful regarding information about FIDM. 

Tell us a bit about yourself. My hobbies are sewing, dancing like a goofball, spending time with my family, best friend, and boyfriend. My interests include art, music, and activities to improve my health. My inspirations are Alexander McQueen, Monique Lhuillier, Carolina Herrera, the outdoors, and positive atmospheres.

What are your proudest accomplishments so far? Never giving up on life. Everyone, and I mean everyone, will have doubts about where they are in life, but you should never ever give up. Each day, do something for your neighbor, something for the world, and something for yourself. You should always feel proud about your progress each day as an individual.

What made FIDM right for you? The location, friendly vibes, and endless opportunities I see exploding from this gateway to greatness.

Describe your entrance project. My entrance project was based around the idea of living out your fairytale. Fashion is something that allows a person to express themselves. Your personal fairytale may include becoming a princess, rockstar, or a doctor, but the important thing to remember is that it is your fairytale and no one else's. My entrance project tried to encompass a relation to everyone's dreams.

What are your career goals? To become a fashion designer; I would love to build a fashion empire. In addition, I vow to always, always, always give back to the community. No great soul is great alone and I feel it in my heart to give back what has been given.

What do you expect to learn at FIDM? I expect to learn diligence in regards to working with designs, fabrics, people, connections, and self-improvement. The tools that FIDM has to offer are at my fingertips, I simply have to use them.



SF Instructor's Artful Gentleman Company Partnering With Salesforce on New Fashion App


SF Instructor Jake Wall, the designer behind Artful Gentleman, is partnering with on a fashion app that will help consumers decide what to buy at retail stores. Fashionforce uses a combination of dressing rooms with photo-sphere mirrors and 360-degree cameras, as well as fashion experts via a cloud platform, to advise the user, according to Racked SF. The official roll out will be February 9, 2015, in San Francisco. 



Seventh Grade Student and Aspiring Fashion Designer Rachel DeAngelis Has Her Heart Set on FIDM


Rachel DeAngelis is in seventh grade, and has already designed and created a ball gown among countless other sewing projects. Sewing since the age of seven, this young fashion designer spends 15 hours a week working in her design studio. She attends FIDM Saturday Workshops whenever possible, and would be honored to earn her four-year degree from FIDM one day. A Southern California native, Rachel has even been featured in the Malibu Surfside News. Read on to find out more about this inspiring young designer.

Tell us about your interest in fashion: My first interest in fashion started when I saw a lot of my family members sew and design. I really wanted to learn, too. I started with hand sewing to learning the basics, and then continued with classes at Joann’s Fabrics, Fashion Camp (Orange County), Sew Modern, Mood, and FIDM Saturday workshops. I now design my own fashion line. Please look at my website

Who taught you how to sew? My grandma taught me how to hand sew and use the machine. When I first started, I was too young but when I reached eight that is really when I could understand fashion and sewing.

What do you love about fashion? I love fashion because I can create my thoughts and design them.

What’s your favorite fashion trend this season? My favorite fashion trend this season is the lace in every gown. I believe that every evening gown needs poof or the right kind of embroidery. I also like the flowy, dreamy and silhouette looks. I think it is romantic and comfortable. I always favor the tool, leather, satin ,velvet, and lace, and of course sparkles!


What garment are you most proud of that you have designed and sewed? So far I don’t have an absolute favorite design of my own. I am really proud of two that I have made: my blue ballgown (with 12 yards of fabric) and my corset dress. I am starting to work on an under-the-sea dress and I hoping it will be fabulous.

How often do you sew and work on design projects? I work at my studio about 15 hours a week.

Have you ever attended any of the workshops at FIDM? I have attended several workshops at FIDM. My favorite is the trend setting workshops.

What did you learn? I learned that everything in one line has to match somehow or another. For example, the color and the way it is built.

Do you have plans to attend FIDM? Yes, I would be honored if I could attend FIDM for four years or more because my heart is set on fashion.

Do you have plans to start or join an official FIDM Fashion Club when you start high school? I am not in high school so I can’t start a Fashion Club yet.

What inspires you to pursue fashion? What inspires me the most is my great grandmother. She was a seamstress in New York.

Where do you see yourself in 10 years? I can picture myself being a famous designer and designing for the celebrities. Celebrity weddings would really be the ultimate for me.

Anything else you’d like to share? Vera Wang is my favorite designer. I also like to plan weddings like David Tutera does. I really like Nick Verreos’ designs as well.



'Project Runway' Alumna Kelli Martin Is Founder of Alternative Fashion Mob


FIDM Graduate and Project Runway Alumna Kelli Martin of Anti.Label recently moved to Columbus, Ohio where she founded Alternative Fashion Week and Alternative Fashion Mob, a collection of fashion designers, industry professionals, and couture enthusiasts who are dedicated to furthering the fashion industry in Columbus..

Read a Q&A with Kelli in (614) Magazine.



RSVP For Free 'Fashion Club Day at FIDM' at All Four California Campuses



Open to all high school students and Fashion Club Advisors, FIDM is offering its next Fashion Club Day at FIDM event on Presidents Day, Monday, February 16, 2015, from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Check-in begins at 9:30 a.m.

Join us for a free day of fun and informative workshops at FIDM’s four California campuses. Lunch will be provided. You'll learn about careers and important trends in the industry, meet former Fashion Club Presidents who are now FIDM Students, and get tips on how to run an official FIDM Fashion Club.

Connect with other high school students in FIDM Fashion Clubs, find out about unique scholarship opportunities, and enjoy hands-on workshops taught by FIDM Staff. Fashion Club Members will receive credit for two meetings just by attending. Campus tours and Admissions Advisors will be available to assist prospective students.

Fashion Club Day at FIDM will be held on all four campus locations. Space is limited and will be reserved on a first-come, first-served basis, so RSVP today. We hope to see you there! 

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FIDM Student and Career Ambassador Interning at Vera Wang (Interview)


Name: Brandie Rose Ribeiro

Major: Fashion Design

Grad Date: June 2015

How did the internship at Vera Wang come about? Maril Delly from the Career Center gave me the information to contact the manager at Vera Wang who is a graduate of FIDM. I sent the manager a detailed email along with my information. The manager from Vera Wang then contacted me and scheduled an appointment for me to interview. The initial interview was to review my resume and get to know me.

I was contacted again by the Vera Wang manager who scheduled a second interview with me, which consisted of a written exam. Lastly, I was contacted once more by the Vera Wang manager in which she scheduled a final interview with me which was an oral presentation of a pin alteration and stitch test. A week later I received a phone call stating that I was selected to be a Vera Wang intern. I am very thankful to be one of the chosen among many applicants.

What are your roles and responsibilities in the internship? My role as an intern is to assist the master seamstress and tailors in the alteration department. My assignments are to sew bra cups, baste seams in place for fittings, and bead gowns and veils. In addition, I sew bridal buttons, add bows, sew ribbons for bustles, remove and prepare zippers, and organize fabrics and supplies. Throughout my experience they have taught me special sewing techniques which I consistently apply to my school work and my own bridal orders.

How did you become a FIDM Career Ambassador? The Career Center approached me to see if I would be willing to participate and become a Career Ambassador, representing the Career Center by reaching out to FIDM students. In order to become a Career Ambassador for the Career Center at FIDM, one must have a 3.0 GPA or higher.

In addition, I had to go through an in-depth training with each Career Advisor on certain subjects that apply to one’s career journey. The training sessions prepared  my fellow ambassadors and I to reach out to all FIDM students and share with them the crucial skills necessary to succeed in our competitive industry.

What is your role as a Career Ambassador? As a Career Ambassador, I brainstorm ideas for our meetings. I research, prepare, and host meetings. Our meetings are held at the Career Center during lunch on selected scheduled Wednesdays and lunch is provided for all the attendees. Our meetings consist of activities, speeches, and sharing with FIDM Students (socials bios, networking skills, how to dress for an interview, interviewing techniques, and resume presentation and writing.)

What are your career goals? Prior to entering FIDM, my goal was to become a bridal gown designer. Upon graduating from FIDM, my five year plan is to design for Vera Wang’s bridal house and reside in the real world of business, gaining practical experience. Approximately five years later, I will brand myself as many designers do, gaining a broad perspective customer base, and will launch my own bridal line.

Over the next 10 years, I plan to work my business plan to where I am one of the top competitors in the bridal industry. Upon my name being highly established, I hope to extend my design skills into lingerie and resort wear for the honeymoon. Once I achieve these goals, I will make new goals and continue to follow my dreams.

How do you feel FIDM is preparing you for the industry? The Fashion Design program at FIDM has taught me everything it takes to brainstorm a design for a target customer, sketching on both paper and Adobe Illustration, deciding whether to drape my design or go straight to pattern-work, sourcing suitable fabric, and knowing what is appropriate for certain seasons. I'm also prepared when it come sto making the garment, doing fittings, and creating tech packs that are presentable for an interview or a prospective client.

I arrived at FIDM with amateur sewing skills, and the FIDM Fashion Design program has given me the confidence and knowledge to become a polished professional bridal gown designer. Recently I was accepted into the Bachelor of Science Business Management Program. This education will provide me the skill set to create and efficiently run a business. The program will give me the knowledge to go forth with my dream and create a well-lit path to achieving my goal and creating new goals.



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! 



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.



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



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



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.



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



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.



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.



Alumna Creates PERFECTLY.ME Online Clothing Company


The Millard County Chronicle Progress has a profile of FIDM Graduate Stephanie Nissen, who has created PEFECTLY.ME, an online clothing company that offers access to personal stylists, personality-based clothing recommendations, and personalized clothing. She is currently crowdsourcing the funds needed to fully launch the collection, which will offer designs for different types of curves and sizes. 



Join Celebrity Stylist Daniel Musto for a Styling Workshop in January


Acclaimed stylist and FIDM Graduate Daniel Musto is holding a Styling 2.0 workshop on Sunday, January 11, 2015, from 2:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. in Venice Beach. Daniel, who has styled clients such as Jenny McCarthy, Gabourey Sidibe, Giuliana Rancic, and Kendra Wilkinson, will teach attendees how to work as as successful celebrity stylist. 

Space is extremely limited. Please RSVP for location, 



FIDM Grad Working as Costume PA on New Alice in Wonderland: Through the Looking Glass Film


Name: Raquel Gremler

Major: Fashion Design

Grad Year: 2012

What is your role on Alice in Wonderland: Through the Looking Glass (2016)? I am a Costume PA, and I have mainly been assisting the Costume Supervisor, Donna O'Neal. She has taken the time to mentor me; it has been incredible to work for this team, led by Oscar-winning Costume Designer Colleen Atwood. We wrap production at the end of the week. 

What have you been up to since graduation? After I graduated I worked in several arenas, from styling for e-commerce websites like HauteLook and Farfetch, to collaborating with film schools like AFI and NYU. I also worked assisting different costume designers and major stylists.

How did FIDM help prepare your for this career? FIDM gave me the tools to start networking and be productive on my job. Thanks to the design and history classes I have a major advantage when I apply for jobs. At FIDM, Career Advisor Maril Delly gave me the opportunity to work for Wendy Greiner, who introduced me to the supervisor for Alice in Wonderland: Through The Looking Glass.

Next month, you begin working on a new Tim Burton film, Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar ChildrenI can't wait to start working for Colleen one more time on her next project. It will be directed by Tim Burton, which makes it a dream come true. I came to London chasing that dream. To be honest, I wouldn't have had this opportunity if FIDM and their staff hadn't given me their support. 

What has it been like working for such a legendary Costume Designer? Working with Colleen has been an incredible opportunity. I have been fortunate to see how she starts designing, picks fabrics, and mixes trims together. I don't think I could be any luckier than to be working for a second time for her and her team. She is such an icon and I have been learning so much since I started. 



SF Vis Comm Students Install a Mirrored Gown at Westfield Valley Fair in San Jose


SF Visual Communications Students installed an impressive Mirrored Gown at Westfield Valley Fair Mall in San Jose last Thursday for the center's Cocktails & Couture event. Four teams of students had the opportunity to compete for a spot in the event. The goal was to develop concepts that would draw attention to the the silent auction tables benefiting Bright Pink®.


The Mirrored Gown concept by Devony Lea, Nathalie Iglesia, Michelle Ortega, and Kimberley Ormeno was selected. The students had one week to create the piece using a dress form, chicken wire, paper mache, an altered dress, and plexiglass mirror. This elegant sculpture represents fashion, femininity, and power. Mirrored Gown will be on display on the San Francisco campus in the near future. 



Jewelry Design Grad Lizz Roberts's LZZR Line Featured in L.A. Times


Jewelry Design Graduate Lizz Roberts is the owner/designer behind L.A.-based LZZR, a collection of earrings, necklaces, bracelets, rings, and accessories. Known for blending masculinity and feminity in its understated designs, LZZR works with recycled or repurposed metals whenever possible.

 LZZR Jewelry has recently partnered with Modern Family actor Jesse Tyler Ferguson's neckwear brand, Tie the Knot, on a line of limited-edition necklaces. Proceeds will benefit groups supporting LGBTQ equality. 

The Los Angeles Times has a report on the collaboration. 



Attend Fashion Club Creativity Workshops at FIDM LA and SD


Join us for a day of Fashion Club Creativity Workshops at FIDM Los Angeles and San Diego on Tuesday, November 11! Meet and network with Fashion Club Members from other High Schools and receive credit for two Fashion Club Meetings just by attending.

Workshops include Fashion Styling, Event Planning, Fashion Club Ideas, and Design Inspiration and are taught by FIDM Instructors and Staff.

Cost: Free
Lunch will be provided.
RSVP is required for each attendee.
SPACE IS LIMITED and will be reserved on a first-come, first-served basis.

RSVP for Los Angeles.

RSVP for San Diego.



Upcoming Fashion Events at the Skirball Include a Talk with Diane von Furstenberg


On Tuesday, November 18 at 7:00 p.m., the Skirball Center will welcome fashion icon and FIDM Advisory Board Member Diane von Furstenberg, as she discusses her new memoir, The Woman I Wanted to Be, presented as part of Book Soup at the Skirball. Her talk will be followed by a book signing. The event costs $30 (plus tax), and includes one ticket and one copy of the book. Reserve in advance. 

Then on Sunday, December 7, the Skirball Center invites you to join Kimberly Truhler—historian, educator, and founder of GlamAmor, a website dedicated to preserving the history of fashion in film—for a lecture on the evolution of fashion in America as innovated by some of Hollywood’s greatest designers. Discounted student pricing available; reserve in advance (includes gallery admission). 

Following her program, Gabriela Hernandez, founder of Bésame Cosmetics, leads a related talk on the history of makeup and a demo on how to achieve that film noir look. Full-time students are eligible for a discounted rate.



Hello 40! The Fashion and Future of Hello Kitty by Grad Angelica Villegas


Hello Kitty mania hits Los Angeles this weekend with Hello Kitty Con 2014, the first ever Hello Kitty convention in the world. Located at The Geffen Contemporary at MOCA in the heart of Little Tokyo, the convention boasts a collection of art from around the globe, limited-edition and exclusive merchandise, tattoos, meet-and-greets with Sanrio’s head designer, and much more. At the event, guests are able to experience the various aspects of the Hello Kitty empire, which include her numerous collaborations with well-known companies such as Target, Beats by Dr. Dre, Sephora, FIDM Graduate Chan Luu, MakerBot, and SPAM.



Hello Kitty’s unmistakable mark on the world of fashion can be see in the Lovely Kitty Wonder installation, which showcases a series of bold and whimsical one-of-a-kind pieces curated by JapanLA Clothing’s Creative Director, Stephiee Nguyen. Highlights from the installation include a red and white vinyl piece by Doll Eyes, which was inspired by the first Hello Kitty coin purse ever made, and a linear iridescent ensemble by Linda Friesen, which exudes a futuristic, yet inherent Art Nouveau flair. Together, the collection illustrates and celebrates the diversity of the fans, as well as Hello Kitty’s true fashion chameleon status.






The event’s focus on fashion expression is not limited to the installations; countless fans dressed up for the occasion. Styles ranged the frilly, lace-infused dresses of Gothic Lolita culture, to intricate high-fashion couture pieces showcasing the talents of the fans. From mod-punk mashups to the delicate tulle and silk of bridal gowns, Hello Kitty fans found a visually arresting way to pay homage to the the cultural icon through highly desirable and wearable art. Sanrio has hit a new high with the sold-out event.



From fashion, to food, to automotive products, to music, to art, Hello Kitty has become deeply imbedded into the daily lives of her friends and fans. For 40 years, the company has been fulfilling their “Small gift, big smile” philosophy by offering products that are intended to foster happiness and friendships. If this weekend’s massive turnout is any indication of the red-bowed icon’s future, then she will surely live on for many more anniversaries. Here’s what Shintaro Tsuji, the founder and CEO of Sanrio, has to say about this milestone event and the future of the company:

Sanrio was born 55 years ago as a company to promote friendship. The message behind the foundation of Sanrio as a company is the following: We cannot live alone. It is imperative that families and friends help one another through communication. […] Hello Kitty has become a messenger to spread the values of friendship and thoughtfulness. Today, Hello Kitty is loved all around the world and has successfully promoted the circle of friendship for 40 years. My wish is for Sanrio’s small gifts to bring smiles to everyone, and to promote friendship everywhere.

--Submitted by FIDM Graduate Angelica Villegas



FIDM's Barbara Bundy and Kevin Jones Remember Oscar de la Renta on 89.3 KPCC


FIDM Vice President for Education Barbara Bundy, Museum & Galleries Curator Kevin Jones, and student Vanessa Puccini share memories of fashion designer with Southern California Public Radio 89.3 KPCC's Off-Ramp. 

"He is truly the difference between fad and fashion," Bundy said. "He was truly fashion, because his style endured for many, many years. It's hard to date many of his pieces."

De la Renta's death Monday at the age of 82 brought memories and tears at FIDM when the bad news arrived. FIDM curator Kevin Jones remembers that, when he was working on a documentary recently, de la Renta delayed a flight back to Europe so he could sit for an interview with Jones. Jones oversees FIDM's vast garment collection, including many de la Renta pieces.

"He could design anything from a swimsuit you could wear on the Riviera all the way to a red carpet gown, and it would translate perfectly," Jones said. "It was always clean and bold in its statement, through silhouette and color."

Listen to the entire segment here



Women in Clothes: A New Collection of Essays about Clothes, Hair, and Makeup

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The thinking woman's guide to what other women are really thinking about clothes, hair, and makeup—this new collection of essays, poems, and interviews entitled Women in Clothes is filled with oddball inspiration for fashion design students. Authors Sheila Heti, Heidi Julavits, and Leanne Sharpton gathered about 600 responses to questions like: What is the most expensive thing you ever bought and was it worth it? What is the difference between taste and style? Do you care about lingerie? Have you ever stolen any dressing ideas from friends or family? Then they scattered pictures of personal fashion collections and art throughout. Among the famous responders are: Lena Dunham, Cindy Sherman, Tavi Gevinson, and Molly Ringwald. Provocative reading for the fashion obsessed.




Kevan Hall Among Top American Designers at the White House Last Week


Last week, Michelle Obama hosted a group of American designers including Diane von Furstenberg, Jenna Lyons, Phillip Lim, Thom Browne, and FIDM Graduate Kevan Hall (pictured below with Rachel Roy), among others. The First Lady's Reach Higher Fashion Education Workshop was held in the East Room at the White House. Designers met and mentored aspiring fashion designers to continue their education. "I was honored to be invited to this incredible event where Michelle Obama celebrated American fashion," Hall said. 




Fashion Design Student Hired to Work on Samsung Commercial


The Career Center recently hosted wardrobe supervisor Amy Wallenberg, who was working on a Samsung Fashion Week commercial. She viewed the work of eight students and hired Fashion Design major Ally Parel. "They called me in to work on-set and I did illustrations for them," Ally explains of the upcoming spot. "I also made makeup templates for the set as well as model spec sheets and cards." 




FIDM Graduates and Twin Sisters Are YouTube Stars (Interview)


FIDM Fashion Design and Business Management Graduates Kyujin Han and Kyuwon Han became active on YouTube around two years ago. What started as a hobby is now a big part of these twin sisters' lives. With more than 83,000 followers and 3.6 million views, Kyujin and Kyuwon's YouTube Channel is a popular destination for DIY-themed videos. 

Are you identical or fraternal twins? Kyujin: We are identical twins born a minute apart!

Where did you grow up? Kyuwon: We were born in South Korea, however, we always had vague, small, and random memories of living in Korea because we traveled frequently to different countries since our childhood. Right after we were born in Korea, our family moved straight to Oklahoma City where we spent our childhood there for seven years.

Although we returned to Korea after seven years, before we knew it, we were living in Washington D.C, then Vancouver, and finally here in the sunny side of southern California in downtown Los Angeles. We spent most of our adolescent years in Vancouver where we completed our high school years. It is also there where we discovered our passion for fashion!

What do you enjoy about sharing DIY content with your audience? Kyujin: Yes, we are DIY enthusiasts! What we enjoy the most about sharing our content with our audiences is the special bond that we are able to create with them. As much as they encourage us with heartwarming and inspiring messages everyday, we want to encourage and inspire young girls and boys who strive for their dream of becoming a fashion designer or anything they devote their heart towards to.



FIDM Alumna Launching Kismit Fashion Line at Phoenix Fashion Week


The new fashion label Kismit, designed by FIDM Graduate Delora Fuglem, will be showcasing their Spring 2015 ready-to-wear collection today at Phoenix Fashion Week. This debut will be the pinnacle of the Emerging Designer Boot Camp experience for the 13 fashion brands. The collection will consist of chic conversational creations, crafted from luxe materials and made for the fearless woman looking to uncover her fashion identity through the use of foundational pieces and captivating hardware.


“The inspiration for Kismit was revealed during my youth. Self-expression and acceptance of who I am, was found through fashion; my desire is to offer an opportunity for discovery by creating a line which merges simplicity with attention to detail” says Delora. Kistmit and other desingers will show their collections today at the Talking Stick Resort in Scottsdale, Arizona, competing for ‘Designer of the Year’ and a $10,000 (value) prize package comprised of goods and services to help launch their brand. Learn more about Delora and Kismit here: 




Celebrity Stylist Hires Advanced Fashion Design Student and Theatre Costume Grad With Help of FIDM Career Center


After reaching out to the FIDM Career Center, celebrity stylist Johnny Blueeyes (pictured, left) was recently on campus to interview a group of handpicked students to assist him as a paid intern on a Los Angeles film shoot for Drive, She Said. The London-based, award-winning stylist and costumer is known for his work with clients such as Lana Del Rey (pictured, right), The Guillemots, Charli XCX, and Cocknbullkid. 

Johnny hired Advanced Fashion Design Student Zahra Marchand based on her sewing skills and professionalism. In her new paid position, she will help with story boards, assist with designs, and source and redevelop vintage costumes. The famed stylist and costume designer also hired FIDM Textile Design and Advanced Theatre Costume Design Graduate Chloe Bentz for the film shoot. 



Fashion Design Grad Designing Multi-Functional Tote Bags


Fashion Design Alumna Sara Song, who designs multi-functional tote bags under the new label Lunch Time by Sara Song, is already selling at the FIDM Museum Store and has an online shop. We recently chatted with Sara to learn more. 

Why did you begin making your tote bags? I had always dreamed of having my own brand since I started studying Fashion Design at FIDM. When I was a student, I was looking for a fashionable tote bag that I could take every day to school, my work, the gym, or the mall, but I couldn’t find one that really complimented my style. So I started to design tote bags that suited my needs and style.

How are your bags different? Unlike other tote bags, my bags are multi-functional, with insulation inside so that you can use it as a purse when you hang out with your friends, or when you go to work, you can use it as a lunch bag and put your sandwiches and fruits to keep it cool and fresh.

How does it feel to see your product at the FIDM Museum Store? As an Alumna of FIDM, I’m so excited to introduce my bags for the first time at my school. I believe this will be a great opportunity for my line to go forward. I’m so grateful to be able to start my journey with FIDM Museum Store!



Baldwin Jeans Introduces #MYBALDWIN Social Media Campaign


GQ has a report about Baldwin Jeans, founded by FIDM Graduate Matt Baldwin, and their new social media campaign, #MYBALDWIN. The cult favorite denim brand is asking their fans to upload shots of their beloved jeans, in various states of worn-in-ness. Fans can then vote on which pairs they like best, and the top three washes with the most votes (by December 1) will be put into production and named after the owners, who will win a free pair. 

Hear more from Matt below: 


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