The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People recently hosted The Fashion Show in the Lowman Student Center Ballroom. The NAACP hosts the event every spring, encouraging the people of SHSU to showcase their art. This year, the event is directed by Deondrae Carter Jr., a senior who is double majoring in criminal justice and psychology. Each year, the directors choose a theme to present the show. This year’s theme being the era of the ‘90s. The inspiration was found in a song by one of the performers of the event. Carter explained the song that inspired the theme is characterized by “a jazzy vibe, that made me reminisce on the ‘90s.”
“I want people to take away the fact that no matter what time period we are in, it will always be filled with flashbacks of the past. The 90’s was and is a key cornerstone in our history and will forever be remembered,” Carter explained.
The fashion show provided an excellent platform that fostered a sense of unity for the community of SHSU through the exchange of creative ideas and various modes of art. The designers featured in the show included Shop Capsule, Gym Legend Apparel, Astonishing Apparel, Faded Decade x Bare Like Nude and Parrissamourr.
The models that brought the visuals of each designer to life all auditioned to be featured in the show. The process of auditioning entailed the assessment of the model’s ability to walk gracefully to various types of music while also being able to remain in character regardless of the environment. Senior accounting major Kevon Harris has modeled for the event for three years. Harris shared his perspective on what makes the fashion show a unique event and advised participants.
“Be yourself,” Harris said. “Don’t follow the wave, because what isn’t the norm is considered the most important part of who a person is; it is what makes an individual unique.”
Guests were immediately greeted by dancing lights, which were accompanied by music of the ‘90s. The ballroom was cleverly designed to model a clock. The significance behind the clock design was to symbolize the important, timeless contributions that the ‘90s is responsible for. Aside paying tribute to the ‘90s, Carter had a specific vision.
“[We wanted to] create a space for everyone to show their creative talents,” Carter said.
The show was introduced by a symbolic piece performed by the artist and SHSU alumnus Canaan Cadwell. He has performed for previous fashion shows, however, this is the first time he has preformed as a musician. Cadwell explained the defining moment in his life that influenced him to fully pursue music.
“From a young age, I’ve always been musically inclined,” Cadwell said. “What made we want to get into it was kind of redefining that, but also in a rap. That’s how rap blues came about; it is a mixture between rap and the appreciation of what got me into liking music in the first place.”
The performance was followed by several designers showcasing their brand. The runway was designed to encourage an interactive experience between the brands and audience. As the models finished their walk, the audience was able to walk onto the runway and truly appreciate the brand of each designer.
The designers had their unique visions on the fashion of the ‘90s. As such, they carefully selected the models to bring their unique touch to life. Faded Decade is a brand based in Huntsville.
“We kind of created an underground platform for people we know and also for people we find. [Faded Decade] provides a platform for us to release our art work as well as being able to help others along the way,” said Rome, a designer of the brand.
Rome’s parting advice for those who are interested in designing is to relentlessly pursue it.
Bare Like Nude, established in Huntsville by founder Paul Baxter, collaborated with Faded Decade. Bare Like Nude, by designer Paul Baxter, was founded in Huntsville. Baxter’s brand originally began as a vintage clothing store, which later became affiliated with Faded Decade.
“I like the idea of creating something that wasn’t there before,” Baxter said. “It’s like putting something out there that is completely yours.”
Baxter emphasizes the idea of creating a brand from the basics. He strongly encourages those who are interested in design to create their brand, despite lack of experience.
Not only did the event showcase various brands, but featured performances from dancers and a poet. The dancers performed an energetic number that paid homage to the breakdancing phase of the ‘90s. The final performance of the night ended with a beautiful poem titled “blaQk” by Criminal Justice major Jaila Moore. When Carter closed the show, he revealed the new director for next year’s show—Britany Dean
The Fashion Show was a beautiful tribute to the ‘90s era. However, what makes the event wonderful is the unity it fostered under the different modes of art. The show didn’t solely revolve around one form of art, it combined several pieces of art. This in turn resulted in the show being a celebration of individuality amongst the people of Sam. The show wouldn’t have been made possible without the hard work of the Fashion Committee department and all those involved.