Models wearing Victoria Harris’s winning designs work the runway at Greensboro Fashion Week. The designs featured vinyl upholstery fabric that Harris found in a thrift shop.
* Photos courtesy of Victoria Harris
Victoria Harris, a senior fashion merchandising and design major, recently won the College Designer Showcase event of Greensboro Fashion Week, held at the Greensboro Cultural Center on Oct. 3.
To enter, Harris had to apply and submit a portfolio, which was evaluated by the Greensboro Fashion Week judges. Harris was also required to submit several “looks,” or outfits, which were evaluated and approved before being allowed to compete.
Elizabeth Newcomb-Hopfer, associate professor of fashion merchandising and design in the Department of Family and Consumer Sciences, is one of Harris’s professors.
“It’s significant for a student to have a collection that’s good enough to showcase, but to win is really a different level,” Hopfer said. “She can definitely use this as a stepping-stone to even bigger events – in New York or Washington, D.C., for example.”
Greensboro Fashion Week is one of the state’s three big fashion events, the others being held in Charlotte and Raleigh.
Although Harris learned the skills she needed to make her all-original portfolio of designs in the fashion merchandising design labs, she created the six “looks” that she entered in the Fashion Week competition specifically for the event.
“It was an all-new collection, not something she had done for class,” Hopfer said. “She is a very good student, and she has entered fashion design competitions before. If there’s an opportunity, she’ll create something new.”
Harris’s 10-piece collection featured vinyl upholstery fabric, which she found in a High Point thrift store.
“I like to get a fabric first, and think about what it could be,” she said. “Sometimes I sketch first, but I usually start with the fabric. I’m always on the lookout for something new.”
“As a senior, she’s had all the classes,” Hopfer said. “I provided feedback and support. She didn’t really need a lot of instruction.”
Harris, who is interning this fall at Kontoor Brands in Greensboro, is already on her way to a career in fashion doing custom designs with her own brand, ShopBlvssom, where she plans to soon add a spring collection.
“I want to keep doing shows, add new products, keep pushing out new content,” she said.
Greensboro Fashion Week is a showcase of local designers, students and fashion talent in North Carolina.
In addition to highlighting the talents of Greensboro’s fashion community, the week is designed to offer opportunities for students, raise funds for nonprofit ArtsGreensboro, help reinvigorate the downtown and be a unifying event for the city.
Harris was one of several Aggies at the event. Wilhelmina Mends-Cole ’19 also showcased a collection.