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Amherst Designers’ Work Hits the Runway at Erie 1 BOCES FUSION Fashion Show

fashion design student  fashion design student portrait  STudent poses with her clothing design

Abigail Abramowitz, Kaylee Starkweather and Jada Thornton all love designing clothing and they will get a chance to showcase their original designs on the runway during the 2023 FUSION Fashion Show: Lust For Life.

They are enrolled in the two-year Fashion Design Technology program at Erie 1 BOCES’ Harkness Career & Technical Center and they've learned to dress, style and create trends based on design elements and the fashion cycle. The FUSION Fashion Show is the culminating activity. The theme for this year’s show, Lust For Life, was developed by students, who said they wanted to live life passionately after facing disruptions to their academic and personal lives.

“I am always drawing and coming up with new ideas and visions that I can translate into designs,” said Abigail. “I am able to express myself and my ideas through my designs,” adding that her favorite part of her studies was making new designs.  

Kaylee said her designs show what she described as a “cycle’s end” in overcoming life’s hardships. “The full collection is showcasing a love letter to one's past self for learning to love even through tough times,” she said.

“My favorite area of this industry is designing fashions because I love making and putting clothes on people,” said Jada, adding that the inspiration for her work is the ability to create things in her mind and bring them to life.

The annual show has become a fixture for multiple Erie 1 BOCES programs, who support each other to ensure the success of the show. That includes Barbering and Cosmetology program students who prepare participating models, along with Criminal Justice students that assist with security for the evening. The Digital Media program has created posters and tickets for the show and will record the live show, the Collision Repair program will paint the event’s backdrop and the Building Trades program will build the show’s runway and stage.

This year's show will take place on March 30 at Sto Lat Event Center, located in the Eastern Hills Mall, 4545 Transit Rd, Williamsville, N.Y. Doors will open at 6 p.m., and the show will begin at 7 p.m. A livestream of the show is available.