Art & Design Events

IIDA Avant Garb Fashion Show 2016: Interior Designers Create One-Of-A-Kind Garments Out of Materials Commonly Found in Built Environments

Design Collide

Think of the fun process of making a garnment! Now, imagine a different level of the creative process when this garnment is not made out of your ordinary textiles/fabrics….

On February 12th, 2016, International Interior Design Association (IIDA), The Indiana Chapter, Hosted an Avant Garb Fashion Show at Crane Bay Event Center. The IIDA organization paired up various Interior Design/Architecture Firms with different vendors of interior materials (Carpet, Textiles, Tile, etc.) and asked them to create a unique fashion garnment using the assigned vendor manufacturer as well as a given word that desciribed a specific personality/characterist.

I had the great opportunity to be on Facility Concepts Inc. team. The design team at Facility Concepts had an incredible opportunity to participate at the International Interior Design Association’s Avant Garb Fashion Show. The show featured creative fashion garments fabricated out of unique materials commonly found in environments where we live, work, and play, every day. These re-imagined materials ranged from carpet and tile to wallcovering and paint. The theme this year, “Design Collide”, challenged teams to design and create a garment by hand, based on a collision of words and colors. Our design team did a wonderful job, and would like to thank C.F. Stinson, manufacturer of innovative textiles, for their help.

Bonfire-Disillusioned   IMG_8848

With the theme of the event being “Where Personality + Color Collide“, the personality word we got assigned to was “Disillusioned” along with the PPG (Porter Paints) color, “Bonfire”. After looking into the meaning(s) of our words and color and how they both related to each other, we came up with the following concept statement which served as the statement that described the design of our garnment.

Garment Concept

“First, life imitates nature, then nature imitates life. Then, life find its very meaning from the seen and unseen in nature. Take, for example, the high maintenance Euphoribia Bonfire plant. As with all plants, this Bonfires’ root system is the heart the plant. Though we only see the stems, petals, and leaves, an entire root system remains unseen, nourishing and taking care of the entire plant. Don’t let the look fool you as these pretty euphorbia plants come with a word of caution. First you see the beauty, then you learn that these plants are poisonous. Furthermore, this disillusionment is followed by learning that the Bonfires’ foliage starts out green and then changes to a marron-red color, and its blooms are featured in bright-yellow bracts that seem to float atop the mound of foliage. These bracts might be mistaken as the plant’s blooms, but they actually are modified leaves. This explains the patterns in life, patterns in nature; therefore patterns in design. In design, beauty is more than what meets the eye. The unseen is the “behind the scenes” detailed work that is the strong foundation behind the end results of an aesthetic projects. The colorful materials, colors, and accessories are the petals of the Bonfire plant.”

The Creative Process

Fashion Show Sketch

Taken our overall concept and discussing how it would translate to the look of our one-of-a-kind outfit, I did a sketch of what this garnment would look like using Micron pens, Prisma Color color pencils and Windsor & Newton watercolors.

The next step was to select the most appropriate textile designs and colors. We had a blast going through our C.F. Stinson Textile Manufacturer tip cards and memos. There were so many fun fabrics to choose from! After a few days of searching, we picked our final fabrics and got the yardage needed to make our faboulous dress!

Garment Description

Fashion Show Model-Brittany 1  Fashion Show Model-Brittany 2

Our garment consists of two parts; a strapless, cocktail length dress and an embellished overlay skirt. A variety of neutral, brown tones and rich hues, of pink, purple, green, and yellow were selected to represent the different color changing stages of the Euphorbia Bonfire plant while enriching the Bonfire paint color assigned to our team. The focal point of the gown was created using an array of different size petal shapes layered around the waist. The gown is balanced with more petal-like shapes creating the illusion of sleeves that connect to straps crisscrossing on the back. The use of long, individual strands of thread adds dimension and texture to the long, flowy, overlay skirt, while helping convey aspects of our concept.

Watch the video below for more details as well as visuals explaining the concept!

For More Pictures Of The Process & Behind The Scenes, CLICK HERE!


Blog at

%d bloggers like this: