The 5 emerging designers will debut the fashions they've been crafting since class began on March 1, 2012 for the Philadelphia Fashion Incubator. After nearly 50 workshops and retail critiques, meetings with designers and countless hours of production DIRs (Designers in Residence) will present their spring 2012 collections on their biggest stage yet: the runway in Macy's Center City Grand Court.
The Macy's Fashion Show will happen at the Grand Court of Macy's Center City at 1300 Market Street tomorrow from 5:30-7:30 p.m.
Here are the profiles of the designers participating in the program:
Autumn Kietponglert, Heartless Revival
Autumn Kietponglert is an award-winning Philadelphia-based independent fashion designer whose work has been shown across the world. Her hard work and commitment to her craft are just some of the reasons why Kietponglert was selected as Designer-In-Residence for the 2012 Philadelphia Fashion Incubator.
Throughout the years Kietponglert has shown her work at major fashion events around the world, including Philadelphia Fashion Week, Couture Fashion Week (NYC), Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week (NYC) and the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art. She has also shown in Los Angeles, Dallas and Chicago and has had art exhibitions in Florence and Philadelphia. Editorials featuring her designs, styling and writing have been published internationally in France, Germany and the UK. Kietponglert has a Bachelors Degree in Fibers from The University of the Arts and a Masters Degree from Drexel University in Fashion Design. In addition, she has studied in Florence, New York and Paris.
Kietponglert currently runs two design houses, Autumnlin Atelier and Heartless Revival. Autumnlin Atelier creates one-of-a-kind and limited edition haute couture using hand-pleated silk, sculpted exotic leather and undulating zipper-tooth panels. The gowns are hand-pleated and draped making each individual garment much like a fingerprint. Dreams serve as the primary inspiration, creating a story that becomes the visual prose for all collections. The Heartless Revival design house is also inspired by dreams, the inherent dark nature of the label: pale, beautiful, cold and quiet, with shades of darkness and light while incorporating a historic silhouette and a desire to connect with the Victorian era.
Kaitlyn Doherty, Kaitlyn Elizabeth
Kaitlyn Doherty has always been inspired by the world around her. Her advanced education and extensive European travels make her an ideal fit as Designer-In-Residence for the 2012 Philadelphia Fashion Incubator at Macy's Center City.
Doherty graduated from Philadelphia University in 2011, earning a Bachelor of Science degree in Fashion Design. While at school she wasted no time making her mark on the fashion scene in Philadelphia. Several honors include the Young Spirit Award for Excellence in Childrenswear, Best Student Made Handbag Inspired by the Colors of Vitaminwater for the 2011 Independents Handbag Designer Awards (IHDA) and her Springtime in Paris dress was featured in the Philadelphia International Festival of the Arts fashion show as well as included at the Philadelphia International Flower Show in March 2011. Doherty was also chosen to represent Philadelphia University in Project OR in Salt Lake City, UT earning the People's Choice Award and 1st Runner Up for her Easy Rider jacket which she constructed in just 48 hours.
Doherty launched her company "Kaitlyn Doherty" in her hometown of Horsham, PA, shortly after her graduation debuting her collection inspired by the architecture she came to love during her time spent in Europe. Studying abroad in Rome, Italy gave her the opportunity to travel throughout the country from Capri and Florence to Milan and Venice, as well as to other countries including Greece and the Czech Republic. Doherty is often inspired by the architecture of each place she travels, which is reflected in the aesthetic she infuses into each of her designs.
Latifat Obajinmi and Moriamo Johnson, Aso Damisi
Taking a cue from their Nigerian roots, this sister team is ready to make a splash in the fashion industry incorporating the tradition of their past and the passion of their future. Latifat Obajinmi and Moriamo Johnson are the creators of Aso Damisi (ah-SHAW DAH-me-see) and are the perfect team for the 2012 Philadelphia Fashion Incubator at Macy's Center City.
Both sisters were born in Nigeria and relocated to the United States at a very young age. Moriamo and Latifat originated from the Yoruba- speaking tribe in the West African nation where "Aso" means cloth or clothing and "Damisi" means prosperity. The colors, vibrancy, and styles of the clothing worn hold significance as they represent social standing, age, tribal orientation and marital status.
The talented duo are self-taught designers. Moriamo, a wife and mother having earned two degrees in Chemistry from Rutgers University, has always had a great passion for the fashion industry. Her sister, Latifat is earning a degree in Human Resource Management and has an eye for fashion. Latifat took notice of new trends and styles through her work in fashion retail and envisioned different fashions in her head, sketching them whenever she had a chance.
The sisters hope that the Aso Damisi clothing line will increase the popularity of African-inspired wear in the US apparel market. In recent years, the sisters began creating different outfits out of traditional wax print fabrics, with an influence of American designer labels. The line is designed for women who are not afraid to step out in something vibrant, colorful and fresh.
Melissa D'Agostino, D'AGOSTINO Fashion Textile Design Melissa D'Agostino's one of a kind designs showcase the hand-made touches that make her a perfect fit as Designer-In-Residence for the 2012 Philadelphia Fashion Incubator at Macy's Center City.
Owner and Sole Designer of D'AGOSTINO Fashion Textile Design, D'Agostino possesses a BFA in Sculptural Fine Arts and a Minor in Textiles from Moore College of Art and Design, graduating in 2002. D'AGOSTINO Fashion Textile Design operates as a home-based business, which launched in 2009, where D'Agostino independently creates slow fashion collections working directly with clients, creating one garment at a time. The D'Agostino collection begins with her artistic skill developing hand-made, hand-dyed print designs and techniques that create the fabric for a dynamic clothing and accessory line.
D'Agostino's vision has received recognition from Women's Opportunity Resource Center winning first prize in a Business Plan Competition as well as the Community Impact Award for her custom design work in May 2011. A big influence for D'Agostino's collection is the hand-made movement which she contributes to part-time as a hand block painter at Galbraith and Paul Textile and Lighting Studio. She raises awareness for the slow growth fashion movement through her membership in local groups and national organizations such as "3 by Three," a design collective initiated in January 2010 while also serving as an active member of the Philadelphia Guild for Handweavers since 2005.