Ever wonder what it takes to become a finalist in the Parsons vs. FIT Fusion Fashion Show? I recently chatted with my friend Carteris, one of the finalists for this year’s show, about his experience with Fusion have been like so far and advice he has for aspiring designers looking to enter the competition!
Name: Carteris Travanti
Major and Year: Fashion Design BFA ’14
Hometown: Atlanta, Georgia
Lauren Davis: First off, congrats on being a finalist! I know the application process for Fusion is competitive, tell me a little bit about what that process was like for you?
Carteris Travanti: The application process was a lot to think about, because I wanted to do something that would outdo last year’s application. I wanted to make sure I did something that was true to my own aesthetic, as opposed to showing tricks. I just wanted to create fashion that was wearable, marketable with still some level of fantasy.
After the application process there is a phone interview where you find out you are a first 20 finalist, and then they call you back about an hour later and that’s when you find out that you’ve made it.
LD: Sounds intense! What was your reaction when you found out you were a finalist?
CT: I was really surprised and it was really unexpected. My sketches were really abstract in my opinion, but when they called me I was jumping for joy and I really could not believe it!
LD: Who did you tell first?
CT: Well, initially I didn’t really tell anyone because it was my good friend’s birthday, and I did not want to take away from that so I kept it on the hush hush until after that.
LD: So far I’m loving what I see from the sketches, and I also noticed the collection is all white. What was the inspiration for that?
CT: My inspiration is church – the Baptist church. Being from the south, I was just thinking about my own church experience and how I could put that into the high fashion arena. That inspired the purity of the collection, which is pure white. It’s very simple, clean, and my own take on resort wear.
LD: What else are sources of inspiration for you? Do you look to blogs, other designers, or magazines?
CT: I love the idea of menswear inspiring womenswear. Some blogs I look at are: Into the Fashion, Manner of Man, and The Sartorialist. My favorite designers also change from time to time. Right now, I love Jil Sander and her minimalistic aesthetic.
LD: Do you have any advice for aspiring designers?
CT: When you apply, be very detailed in your intentions and very honest with yourself and what you wish to communicate. Be true to yourself but also say things that are going to set yourself aside from the competition. Make someone stop at your application and say, “This person is interesting and can bring something different to the table.” Also remember to just go with the flow and let it happen.
Be sure to buy tickets for Fusion Fashion Show 2012 (multiple show dates in March) when they go on sale on February 15th! And good luck to Carteris and all the other finalists!
–Until next time! Lauren Davis (Integrated Design BFA ’14)