Students look to reimagine Baylor Fashion Show as result of COVID-19

Students prepare for last year's Fashion Show put on by Baylor students. Photo courtesy of Alexandra Davis.

By Andie Chilson | Reporter

In the wake of COVID-19 and the closure of campus activities, the Baylor Fashion Show team is working to reimagine the layout of the show to ensure that seniors get the chance to showcase the collections they have been working on since their freshman year.

Alexandra Davis, recent Baylor grad and creative director of the fashion show, said the show has been in the works since August, so she and the rest of her team are disappointed that they will not be able to see their vision come to fruition.

The theme of this year’s fashion show, which was planned for Sunday, was “fashion is for everyone.” Davis and her team wanted fashion to feel accessible to the entire Baylor community, not just fashion and arts students.

“The ‘fashion is for everyone’ thing was me wanting to involve the university and the students and making sure that people knew that the fashion industry is not just for design majors,” Davis said.

Davis said she envisioned this as an opportunity for students of all different majors and backgrounds to come together. The team held an open talent call and received over 30 responses from students wanting to be involved in different ways.

“We’re hoping that we can keep all the people that were interested on for next year,” Davis said.

COVID-19 has affected the fashion industry, outside of the Baylor Fashion Show, making the theme of “fashion is for everyone” even more relevant today. With the increased need for masks and sanitary supplies, fashion houses around the world are re-purposing their materials and facilities to produce essential items like hand sanitizer and face masks.

“This is a theme that we can keep for next year that can be reinterpreted,” Davis said.

Fashion students across the country have been working on their senior collections for nearly four years, and Davis is determined to give Baylor seniors the recognition they deserve.

“I want to be able to display the designs and the collections in a way that’s going to be comparable to how the [fashion] industry is doing it… so we’ve been talking a lot about how to do that,” Davis said.

The Baylor fashion department has been working to elevate their Instagram to showcase the work of their seniors.

“We want to make sure to display something in a cool way, so that’s what we’ve been trying to do with the Instagram so that people can see [the work of] the design students,” Davis said.

Shreveport, La., senior Melanie Pace, the marketing director for the fashion show, is trying to remain positive about its future.

“I’m trying to view this as a creative challenge instead of as an obstacle,” Pace said.

Davis and Pace are considering different ways that the senior design students could showcase their collections, including an online look book, a video presentation or having the designers photograph their collections remotely. Nothing has been officially decided, however.

“It’s definitely a complicated situation, but I think we’re going to be able to do something good with this, and maybe even find a way to incorporate this into next year’s show and the future of Baylor fashion,” Pace said.