Nearly 700 guests joined the University of the Incarnate Word (UIW) to celebrate 35 years of fashion at the 2015 Cutting Edge Fiesta Fashion Show. To mark the momentous occasion, this year’s show was held in the new Tobin Center for the Performing Arts which provided a unique backdrop for the breathtaking event. The show is dedicated to Kathleen Watson in recognition of her work and support of the UIW Mission. Watson was instrumental in transforming a small, annual student fashion show into today’s successful event showcasing student talent and creativity while raising funds for scholarships in the UIW fashion department.
The Cutting Edge Fiesta Fashion Show featured garments illustrated, designed and constructed by seniors in UIW’s Fashion Design program. The 2015 student designers were UIW seniors Nicole Abrego, Nasya Barnette, Madeline Gonzalez, Kimberly Howard, Savannah Longoria and Kosher Veasna. Their collections were judged by industry professionals and put on public display in the annual show, a high-energy New York style runway show produced by students in UIW’s Fashion Show Production class.
Veasna took home the top prize, the 2015 Kathleen Watson Award for Best of Show; this award is determined by the garment scored highest by a panel of judges and includes a $1,500 scholarship from the Watson Foundation. Veasna’s collection, created with accentuated shoulders and cinched waists, is a modern interpretation of 19th century Russian fashion. Barnette took second place in construction and second place in design with Howard winning third place in design.
An Alumni Spotlight, unique to this year’s event, featured fashions by UIW alumna Carrie Harrell ’89 BA. Harrell is the designer and owner of LollieRocks, a line of couture competition swimwear. Harrell is a graduate of UIW’s Fashion Management program. Harrell was also presented the Golden Needle Award. Presented annually, this award is given to an individual who supports the Fashion Management program in the spirit of the university’s Mission.
The Cutting Edge Fiesta Fashion Show is an official Fiesta® event. Proceeds from the show provide scholarships for UIW Fashion Management students. Since 2006, the fashion show’s sponsors and supporters have awarded more than $50,000 in scholarships to students.