Fire, wind, air and earth. This is not just a list of elements, it's this year's theme for Durango High School’s Fashion Show. Like most events at DHS, the annual fashion show was canceled last year because of COVID-19. But it's back and we're told it will be better than ever.
The show will include the designs from about 50 students enrolled in a fashion class at DHS, as well as designs from members of the DHS Fashion Club, who are also producing the show.
Kendra Bonnell, fashion teacher and club adviser, has been busy getting her classes ready for the show next week and said that every student is involved in making the show happen and ensuring its success – not just by making clothing for the show but also by organizing the production and designing the stage.
“The end of the year fashion show is an opportunity for students to showcase their fashion collection and demonstrate their skill set,” she said.
WHAT: Durango high School Fashion Show.
WHEN: 6 p.m. Thursday (May 19).
WHERE: Outside in the DHS courtyard.
TICKETS: $5 per person. All proceeds go back into the fashion program to be used for equipment, supplies and fabric.
Bonnell has been the fashion teacher since 2019 and this will be the second show she has coordinated.
Since the beginning of the school year, the students have been designing their own collections and making each piece from scratch. They’ll use live models and a fashion show runway to display their work next Thursday night. Some students will wear their designs and others will recruit their friends.
Fashion Club member Maggie Williams is thrilled the show is finally coming together.
“One of my projects took so long and I worked on it during Thanksgiving and Christmas break. I just took my designs everywhere I went and worked on them constantly,” she said. “I’ve put in a lot of hours working on my clothes.”
Creating a unique collection of clothing items is not an easy task, but the fashion students have made sure the clothes are up to standard for the big show.
“Making the clothing look professional is very difficult, and I think after you’ve done a few clothing pieces it starts to pull itself together, but making it all look neat is definitely the hardest part,” said senior Diana Koshevoy, who is also a Fashion Club member.
For the students, the show is the first time in two years they will get to present their clothes to an audience as well as to other students in the classes.
“I’m excited to see my designs on my models with the full hair and full makeup and accessories because I haven't seen them on anyone yet. I’m also excited to see other people's collections and what they’ve been working on because I’ve seen snippets of what they are working on in class but I haven't seen full outfits,” Williams said.
Williams will showcase seven pieces in the fashion show, getting inspiration from old fashion looks.
“I went on Pinterest and I found the old money fashion styles, but it became more of a classic modern old money and then the sort of the Gilded glamour from the MET Gala,” she said. “One of my looks is inspired by that. So it's kind of a mix of everything and also what I could find pattern wise.”
For Koshevoy, fashion is something she hopes to pursue after she graduates this fall.
“I’m taking a gap year, hopefully trying to find an internship in the fashion world for about a year. But after that I want to study fashion design in the U.K.,” she said.
Over the years, the Fashion Club at DHS has evolved into a club that helps students develop skills and gives them experience that will help them to pursue a career in fashion.
“I am always impressed at how hard students work and persevere through sewing challenges to create something they are proud of,” Bonnell said.
Abby Bowman is an intern for The Durango Herald. She attends Durango High School.