Home Student Life Academy of Art’s NYFW Graduate Show Earns Raves

Academy of Art’s NYFW Graduate Show Earns Raves

by Mariebelle Alagbate

Between fashion industry press rave reviews and social media shoutouts, it’s more than safe to say that the NYFW Graduate Show was a huge success.

On September 8, Sunday, 11 fresh grads from the School of Fashion made their historic debuts at the highly coveted New York Fashion Week. Although much of the attention is usually geared towards the more established names and brands in the industry, the collections presented by the young, up-and-coming designers all the way from the other side of the coast still brought about much excitement to the audience.

NYFW Graduate Show Times Square Ad
NYFW Graduate Show Times Square Ad

Credit Where Credit Is Due

From attention-grabbing ads on Times Square to media coverage from industry publications, anticipations ran high as the young designers from Academy of Art University in San Francisco made their way to the bustling city of New York.

In no short measure was School of Fashion executive director Simon Ungless credited for this opportunity. UK website Fashion United described the reception of the fashion community best:

“[It] attracts an audience of fashion’s elite, lauded journalists from the old guard and colorful influencers from the new, while its classrooms welcome established and emerging designers, all eager to experience the students’ creativity under the tutelage of director, Simon Ungless.”

– Fashion United UK

Meanwhile, Simon Ungless himself explains the Academy’s philosophy in pushing students’ creativity in an interview with The Daily Front Row.

Most schools are feeling the pressure to have a star. Education is such a different animal from when I graduated in 1992. There’s greater interest in fashion as a career option, and so many more schools, programs, and students. Schools are really out to get more students because education is a business like any other.

Our philosophy at this school is [cultivating] graduate who can get the job support of the American or international fashion industry, and also have a skill set that will sustain them through their careers. That was instilled in us at Saint Martin—“Yeah, you’re going to have this show, but you’re going to have to go out there and get a job in the industry.” It was about getting a job.

– Simon Ungless, School of Fashion Executive Director

Impressing the Influencers

The fashion show was not only a great opportunity to jumpstart their professional careers, but was also a most effective way to introduce their brand to the fashion aficionados at large. Helping this process along were the many notable personalities in attendance for the main show.

Among those seated front and center for the Academy’s New York Fashion Week Graduate Show were no less than Vogue UK Editor Suzy Menkes, runway coach and TV personality Miss J, Supima’s VP or Marketing Buxton Midyette, DSCENSE fashion editor Damien Vaughan Shippee, and fashion stylist Kim Dillinger.

Janell Geason, Global Artistic Director and Make Up Educator for Aveda, who also created looks for the Academy’s Graduate Fashion Show also showed up to support the designers.

Social media influencers such as Bayareafashionista and Scarletthalo_ also kept their followers updated in their respective channels.

All told therefore, it was a fashion show that our young fashion designers will not soon forget. At the rate they’re going, and with the creative designs they’re creating, it won’t be long till theirs become a name that the fashion industry will not be able to ignore and forget as well.

Congratulations to our Academy of Art fashion designers! We’re very proud of you!


Do you want to have a piece of this institutional pride and prestige as well? Apply now to become a part of the Academy of Art community. Get in touch with our admissions representatives to request information on our academic degrees and programs.

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