Berkeley is not known for its sense of high fashion. But that is of no consequence to 100 UC Berkeley students who belong to the campus fashion club, Fashion and Student Trends (FAST). By producing a fashion show each semester, FAST offers interested students hands-on experience in many aspects of the fashion industry from design to photography to promotion. Currently the UC Berkeley fashionistas are busy bees getting ready for the spring 2010 fashion show coming up this Sunday, April 25.
FAST co-president Helene Truong says the club is completely student run and in their fifth year, they are growing in popularity. UC Berkeley has no fashion design or merchandising program, so club members come from various unrelated disciplines. “FAST gives students an opportunity to explore fashion as a hobby,” says Ms. Truong, “and an entrance to a possible future career.” Ms. Truong, a junior majoring in Media Studies, is in her third year working with FAST. She explains that students interested in fashion design present their ideas to a committee and if chosen to present in the semester-end fashion show, they must commit to designing 5-7 pieces each. The progress of the designers is monitored with various deadlines and meetings. Students wanting to model are given training sessions and throughout the semester FAST sponsors various workshops and guests speakers on all aspects of the industry. Other club members volunteer for photographing the show, mixing the music, promoting, backstage managing and all the other necessary tasks of putting on a fashion show. The club also works with local fashion industry businesses, like Paul Mitchell Beauty School who provide some of their students to style hair for the show.
As word of FAST has spread, the bi-annual shows have become the must-attend events of the year. Last spring the audience swelled to 500. This semester’s show promises to be equally as popular with 17 designers showing their creations inspired by old Hollywood glamour. Tickets are $10 pre-sale and $12 at the door. Part of the proceeds will go to Red Cross for Haiti.
Fashion and Student Trends Spring 2010 Fashion Show, Sunday, April 25, 8pm, Pauley Ballroom of Martin Luther King Student Union, UC Berkeley Campus, Telegraph and Bancroft. To reserve tickets e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
Photo by James Gaerlan