The Collective Spirit
On Thursday, April 14th, Miami International University of Art & Design (MIU) held its annual Style Runway Show for women and menswear.
photography: simon soong / flávio iryoda special thanks: posche models, the walk collective
“Every spring, MIU produces the fashion show and networking event to highlight and showcase the work of our students,” said Nestor Camacho, Fashion Design Lead Faculty at MIU. More than twenty fashion design students utilizing their creativity and culture, showed us their looks on this catwalk. Overall, forty-three different designs were presented with an explosion of glamour and color which also transmitted a sense of joy after being locked up by Covid-19. Multiple designs in this runway veered to stylish experimentations on shape with beautiful fabrics and consistently top-notch tailoring. Menswear was a notable standout in the show, as was the focus on sustainable fashion and separates. But before we review any specific details, we must address the immediate question that comes up after any fantastic show such as this one: “What were the trends in the MIU Fashion Show?”.
Carolina Rinchere - Avant-Garde and Menswear Award Winner
In this case, the MIU students wisely focused on macro-trends. The students told us their individual stories through the direction the fashion industry is moving towards. Overall, we have all seen that fashion is more colorful, vibrant, and glamorous after the pandemic but is still conscious of presenting more genderfluid and environmentally sustainable options. The MIU Fashion Show students paid attention to these macro trends while exploring their unique views on dresses, pantsuits, and gender-fluid menswear. The show highlighted this new generation’s creativity which is grounded in the idea that no matter where you go, you should still be glamorous while conscious of critical social issues and comfort. The designs also provided a series of vibrant and saturated colors which only reemphasized the joy of being beautiful again.
Alejandro Bárzaga - Collection award Winner
One of the show’s strong points was menswear. Designers experimented with more gender-fluid shapes while still portraying a strong, powerful vibe. The students explored and redefined the shapes and fabrics that men can wear through beautiful separates. One particular design was reminiscent of a traditional Pathani suit from South Asian culture. Carolina Rinchere, the designer, created an outfit comprised of a tunic, trousers, and a vest that utilized multiple shades of watery blues and beautiful browns. Her clever tailoring presented an elegant outfit that either sex could wear while maintaining a level of elegance perfect for the runway. Other designers created detailed jackets combined with tights, trousers, and shorts. These designers playfully created their menswear with varied fabrics such as denim, metallic material, lace, and intricate textures. This emphasis on menswear separates allowed the looks to be fashionable, upscale, and wearable. MIU should continue encouraging its students to create such innovative looks for men, which is sometimes glossed over in the fashion industry.
Womenswear also had solid points of view. Overall, sustainable fashion continued to make a presence. Chantalle Litvak, another student, presented a variety of outfits that focused on sustainable products. Her patchwork pantsuit was a glorious explosion of color and fabrics that highlighted the upcycled materials but still made a cohesive chic outfit. Many designers in the show were adamant in demonstrating their environmental consciousness, which meant creating products that minimize the harm to our planet. Chantalle and her fellow designers practice what they preach by making sustainable fashion through upcycling (creating new apparel from an old outfit), recycling, and using wholly natural dyes. In the end, though, glamor was vital to the overall show. And it was exemplified by Alejandro Barzaga. Alejandro’s ideas combine his Mexican and Cuban heritage as his garments hint at the Mesoamerican glyphs found in ancient sculptures and architecture. His designs also break down conventional norms. For example, one design showcases a new take on the beloved trench coat featuring a circular cutout and belts draped on the hips in a combination of black wool and gorgeous ruby-red fabric. You can see in Alejandro’s designs a sense of rebellion or disobedience to traditional styles. Many other designers provided fabulous outfits that celebrated being beautiful and a sense of freedom. Their experimentation using cutouts, draping, architectural shapes, and good tailoring highlight the wealth of talent that MIU teaches, supports, and will soon provide to the rest of the world.


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