Pratt Fashion 2016: Behind the scenes of Amazin'

Pratt Institute Fashion Design

The making of the 2016 Pratt Institute Fashion Design Show

Pratt Fashion 2016: Behind the scenes of Amazin'
The 2016 Pratt Fashion Design Runway Show, Amazin', was held on the evening of Thursday, May 5 2016 at Spring Studios in SoHo, Manhattan. Pratt Institute presented its 117th runway show to nearly 400 guests from the fashion industry, who gathered to see collections designed and created by graduating senior fashion students. The show received coverage and acclaim in a range of prominent media outlets including Vogue, WWD, InStyle, Fashionista, and the New York Observer. An exclusive cocktail benefit, also at Spring Studios, took place for attendees of the show. Proceeds from the event benefited Pratt scholarship funds and the Institute’s Department of Fashion.


The 2016 Pratt Institute Fashion Show featured eighteen graduating students who were chosen by faculty and a panel of industry experts to present their final thesis collections for the show. The designers presented eight to thirteen looks per collection, putting their distinct concepts and visions on display. “I was really impressed. I thought there were some great, great collections,” said Fern Mallis, creator of New York Fashion Week, after the show.

Honoring Harold Koda

The 2016 fashion show honored Harold Koda with the Pratt Fashion Award for Lifetime Achievement. Koda was the Curator in Charge of The Costume Institute at The Metropolitan Museum of Art from 2000 to 2016. While Curator at the Metropolitan Museum of Art's Costume Institute, Koda oversaw the transfer of the Brooklyn Museum’s Costume Collection to The Metropolitan Museum of Art in 2009 and the renovation and reopening of The Costume Institute’s space as the Anna Wintour Costume Center in 2014. Koda's exhibits at the Met included included Goddess (2003), Dangerous Liaisons (2004), Poiret: King of Fashion (2007), Schiaparelli and Prada: Impossible Conversations (2012), Charles James: Beyond Fashion (May 2014), and Jacqueline de Ribes: The Art of Style (2015).

Following the runway show, Barneys New York Creative Ambassador-at-Large Simon Doonan presented Harold Koda with the Pratt Fashion Award for Lifetime Achievement.

In his acceptance speech, Harold Koda shared a piece of advice with graduating students and audience members, as quoted on

“The one thing I think every student should know and feel in this moment where the whole fashion industry is undergoing some extraordinary, seismic shifts . . . is that if you look back, you should be able to say that at every moment in your career, you were doing something you loved,” he said. “Fame and fortune, they’re very nice. A really glamorous Instagram account is really nice. But that’s not what you’re going to find satisfying. What you’re going to find satisfying is that your career is based on passion. You might get fame, you might get fortune, you might even get a selfie with Kanye. But that’s all gravy.”

2016 Liz Claiborne Awardee: Jihyun Kim

After the show's finale, graduating senior Jihyun Kim was recognized with the “Liz Claiborne Award – Concept to Product,” a $25,000 award funded by the Liz Claiborne & Art Ortenberg Foundation. The award was given to support Kim’s creative entrepreneurial activities and help cover the costs of developing a collection after graduation.

The 2016 Fashion Show was co-produced by the Fashion Department's Assistant Chair, Emily Mader, and Judy Rice Associates. Sophomore Fashion Design students helped run the show by ushering guests and dressing models back-stage during the event. Each year, there is an afternoon "Friends and Family" show at 2:00PM and a final runway show for members of the fashion industry, school board, donors, and patrons of the arts in the evening at 6:30PM.

Runway models are selected based on their measurements, how they match with each the designer’s collections, and how they walk. Around fifty female and ten male models were hired for the 2016 fashion show. Each model walked for multiple designers.

After models are selected, student designers do final fittings for their collections. Final fittings are an opportunity for designers to fully understand the process of preparing a collection for runway.

The final line-up for run of show is based on which looks work on which models. This is predominantly determined by size and fit but sometimes the features and style of the model as well. Photos are taken of the models wearing each look that they'll wear and added to a line-up board back stage to organize the order.

Sophomore students from 2016 meet backstage with Kathie Young from Judy Rice Associates before the show. Students helped dress models with the looks from each designer's collection and prepare them for the runway.

Sophomore students work as ushers to help set up the seating area and guide guests to their seats. For the 2016 show, ushers wore a uniform of white lab coats and white "FASHION" trucker hats so that guests could identify them.

Jennifer Minniti, Chairperson of the Pratt Institute Fashion Design Department, greets faculty, students, family, and guests at the afternoon show.

Between the afternoon and evening shows, student ushers lay seating assignments, programs, and lookbooks on the seats for guests as the producers of the space set up the runway for the 6:30PM show.

Seating chart for the evening show's 400 guests.

Final adjustments to lighting and layout are done on the runway before the 6:30PM show at Spring Studios.

The Jury Process
Student designers are selected to participate in the show through faculty review and by a panel of distinguished jurors invited by the Pratt Fashion Department. During the event, students present their final collections in a showroom format and discuss their concepts and collection development with jurors. The jury panel plays a key role in the final selection of designers for the fashion show. Jurors provide notes on each designer's collection and give critical and supportive feedback to the student designers during the process. The 2016 Jury was held at Canoe Studios in Manhattan.


The 2016 Jury Panel consisted of guests invited from the fashion industry including designers Gabi Asfour, Adam Selman, Mike Eckhause, Zoe Latta, Laura Kim, Fernando Garcia, Flora Gill, Kai Avent-Deleon, Sonia Stagg, and Neil Gilks. The panel also included writers and editors from a variety of fashion press outlets such as ELLE, Fashionista, Vogue, The Cut, W Magazine, and Refinery29.

Camerin Stoldt

Camerin Stoldt makes final adjustments to her rack before the review begins.

Kristin Mallison

Kristin Mallison stands with her collection at Canoe Studios.

Terese McCoy

Terese McCoy shows a look from her collection to fellow students Kristin Mallison and Maydelle Li.

Students look through Terese McCoy's rack before the jury review begins.

Reviewing the collections

Racks holding each students' final collection are displayed at Canoe Studios. Jury panelists talk to students about their work and inspect the collections. Here, a group of panelists, including Lynn Yaeger pictured center, reviews Ariel Tidhar's collection.

James Palmisano

James Palmisano shows a pant from his collection to a group of jurors.

Margaret Burton

Margaret Burton holds out a pant from her collection for Gabi Asfour from ThreeAsfour to examine.

Nicholas Andreadis, front center, shows his lookbook to a jury panelist. Behind them, two jurors look through Camerin Stoldt's collection.

The Show
The 2016 show featured the final collections designed and created by eighteen seniors graduating from Pratt Fashion: Victoria Aguilar, Nicholas Andreadis, Lizanne Brown, Margaret Burton, Isabel Hall, Moon Jung Chang, Jihyun Kim, Dajung Lee, Maydelle Li, Francesca Longo, Kristin Mallison, Caitlin Therese McCoy, Lauren Moseley, James Palmisano, Tongxu (Sylvan) Shan, Isabella Spataro, Camerin Stoldt, Young Eun Won

Victoria Aguilar

The eighth look in Victoria Aguilar's 2016 thesis collection was a menswear look that consisted of a coat, short, legging, bandana.

Nicholas Andreadis

The eighth look in Nicholas Andreadis's 2016 thesis collection consisted of a button-front dress with skirt underneath.

Lizanne Brown

The twelfth in Lizanne Brown's 2016 thesis collection consisted of a top and skirt.

Margaret Burton

The final look in Margaret Burton's 2016 thesis collection consisted of a dress and tap pant.

Isabel Hall

The first look in Isabel Hall's 2016 thesis collection consisted of a t-shirt with bra print, a long sleeve top bra print, shorts, and a bag.

Moon Jung Chang

The eighth look in Moon Jung Chang's 2016 thesis collection consisted of a sheer long sleeve dress with a hood and a black velvet apron.

Jihyun Kim

The fourth look in Jihyun Kim's 2016 thesis collection consisted of a black top, a skirt, and a bracelet.

Dajung Lee

The third look in Dajung Lee's 2016 thesis collection consisted of a jacket and shorts.

Maydelle Li

The eighth look in Maydelle Li's 2016 thesis collection consisted of a pleated top and a skirt.

Francesca Longo

The eleventh look in Francesca Longo's 2016 thesis collection consisted of a skirt, a t-shirt, a bag, and an embroidered scarf.

Kristin Mallison

The eleventh look in Kristin Mallison's 2016 thesis collection consisted of a top and pants.

Terese McCoy

The ninth look in Terese McCoy's 2016 thesis collection consisted of a leather top, leather skirt, and leather necklace.

Lauren Moseley

The sixth look in Lauren Moseley's 2016 thesis collection consisted of a button-front shirt, coat-dress, and backpack.

James Palmisano

The eighth look in James Palmisano's 2016 thesis collection was a menswear look that consisted of a shirt, coat, and pants.

Tongxu (Sylvan) Shan

The eighth look in Tongxu (Sylvan) Shan's 2016 thesis collection consisted of a tank-top, cropped pants, bag, and glove.

Isabella Spataro

The second look in Isabella Spataro's 2016 thesis collection consisted of a button-front dress.

Camerin Stoldt

The second look in Camerin Stoldt's 2016 thesis collection consisted of a sweatshirt and pants.

Young Eun Won

The third look in Young Eun Won's 2016 thesis collection was a menswear look that consisted of a long sleeve dress.


At the end of the show there is a final walk with each designer and one look from their collection. The designers usually select their favorite look with which to walk and go out in show order. Here, Nicholas Andreadis is pictured hand in hand with a model wearing a jacket, tunic, and pants.

Credits: Story

Exhibit designed and edited by Etta Sandry, Assistant to the Chairperson, Pratt Institute Fashion Design 2016-2017.

Credits: All media
The story featured may in some cases have been created by an independent third party and may not always represent the views of the institutions, listed below, who have supplied the content.
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