Not all the lights in the Mohawk High auditorium could be dimmed for last night’s annual student fashion show.
After all, the models were wearing most of them.
For the third straight year, the Fashion I and Fashion II students of art instructor Linda Joyce put on a program sporting outfits they created in class. After wearing newspapers in year one and recycled materials in 2018, juniors and seniors last night walked the runway decked out in battery-operated lights.
Joyce’s younger Fashion I students displayed their outfits made from paint chips — those samples you examine when pondering what color to repaint your room.
In creating their illuminated apparel, Fashion II students Kayla Sprumont and Kyla Hobel worked to cut wire and mold it to their bodies, mapping out placement of wire and lights, and learning how to attach the latter to the former.
Kayla admitted to being nervous when first hearing of the task. “It’s kind of difficult to wrap your head around — lights into a dress,” she said.
On the other hand, that’s the very reason she wanted to do it. She’d already completed the Fashion I and II classes in previous years, and returned to the arena this year to do an independent study.
“I’d kind of mastered different media and I wanted a challenge,” she said, “and I knew that this one was going to be out there.”
Perhaps no one was more out there than Kyla, whose space alien outfit echoed both the multicolored illumination of the “Close Encounters” mother ship and the brash costuming of TV’s “Lost in Space.”
“We each had a theme, and I was assigned ‘future,” said Kayla, sporting round-tipped spring antennae complemented by a dual conical thorax. “So I decided to go completely futuristic and go alien. All of everything you’ll see out there is based off of space.
“I just wanted something to make a mark my senior year — something that everybody would remember when I walk off the stage.”
While older students embraced light, younger ones focused on latex. They collected paint chip samples and pieced them together into outfits of their own.
““After developing their fashions, the hunt was on for all the paint chips they could get to match their selected hues,” Joyce said. "This meant several trips for the students and myself to any and every store that carried paint. I wrote letters of request to all the major paint companies explaining what we were doing and exactly what we needed. It was disappointing that not one company responded.”
Together, junior Sierra Cerezo said, last night's two fashion lines were going to produce “probably the best fashion show Mohawk has had.”
“The seniors wearing lights is definitely a standout to make everything pop,” she said, “and Fashion One is doing all paint swatches, so it’s very colorful. I think this is the year that the fashion show will really be like, ‘Wow, I remember that.’ ”
Sierra also did her part toward that end, creating a Celtic -and Irish-accented design featuring components cut from a laser engraver.
“Each piece took about six minutes to make,” she said. “You put it on the computer, you transfer it to the laser engraver, and it prints it out, and there’s your piece.”
No matter how each girl's outfit was made, Kayla noted, the process of design to creation unfolded like a story. Sierra echoed those thoughts.
“With fashion, and just in general making these dresses, is where your creativity comes into play,” she explained.” Like Kayla said, it’s like a story, you think of something, you put it down, and it comes to life. Even if you can’t figure something out, you can just put down a shape and draw random stuff out of it.
“Pretty soon you have something, and you make it, and you’re like ‘Wow, I did that.’”