Gallatin Fashion Artists Strut Their Design Stuff

Gallatin School of Individualized Study hosted its seventh annual Gallatin Fashion Show. Ten designers and a faculty member created mini-collections inspired by power and strength.

This past Thursday, the Gallatin School of Individualized Study celebrated its seventh annual Gallatin Fashion Show, one of the school’s signature events. Following the school’s interdisciplinary nature, the theme of this year’s show was “emPOWERed,” and asked designers to create mini-collections inspired by power and strength. The show featured 10 designers, and a faculty member displaying her class’ designs – all of whom are current Gallatin students or recent alums. Every designer introduced their unique capsule collection to the audience before the looks came down the runway. With collections inspired by a variety of elements – from superheros to endangered animal species – the runway show captured each students’s unique artistic direction.

Standout collections included one by Gallatin alum Rachel Wang, titled “Dreamscape,” a story based on the concept of a “girl’s futile escape from danger,” showing the evolution of the dream with each look. Wang utilized an eye-catching, embroidered eyeball motif, placing it on beanie hats and throughout the garments, adding an interesting design element to her oversized work shirts. Wang’s craftsmanship further shone in the detailing of her pieces. With a unique take on a bomber jacket, the construction of the piece added shape and form to the look, while the flared, faux-fur sleeves added a sophisticated drama to an otherwise simplistic collection.

Gallatin freshman Sophia Merlino debuted her first mini-collection titled “House of Power.” A collection of lingerie and loungewear, Merlino was inspired by “the strength and beauty in every woman.” Her pieces, almost entirely made of silk, consisted of a primarily neutral color scheme. Merlino utilized flowy fabrics and loose silhouettes that created movement down the runway, culminating in pieces like a stunning pair of what appeared to be silk-chiffon, army green/gray pants with slits from the ankle all the way up to the hip. Merlino’s collection balanced sensuality with power.

Selly Djap, also a freshman, debuted her collection “Polarity.” Inspired by experiences growing up in Indonesia and living by the ocean, Djap’s collection featured “the diverse, salient qualities of the underwater world.” Her work was an incredible demonstration of detailed beading and a meshing of different textiles. The collection was dreamy but did not consist of only flowy, ethereal-style pieces. One standout was a red dress featuring a structured bust with an overlaid lace on the bottom hem. The quality of her craftsmanship demonstrated her ability to follow her vision through to completion while upholding a high standard of quality. Djap’s collection was tightly edited and sleek, and it was an exciting preview of all she has to offer as a young designer.


Other designers who exhibited their collections included Ryan Andrewsen, Delaney Beem, Shayna Feuer, Victor Leonard, Victoria Robichaud, Carson Stern, Em Watson and faculty member Louise Harpman. View the full gallery of their work and the Gallatin Fashion Show online at

A version of this article appeared in the Wednesday, March 6 print edition. Email Thomas Chou at [email protected]



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