Tonight is the big night, and this is the last day of the DAAP Fashion Series! Take some time to catch up with the other designers we featured, and get to know Sara Hautz and Bree Qureshi below.
Name: Sara Hautz
Focus: Fashion Development
Describe your collection:Meaning "coming and going" in Italian, my collection “VIAVAI” offers ideal travel clothing for women by fusing versatility, style, and functionality. The brand is dedicated to empowering women to travel effectively and appropriately without having to compromise their personal style.
Who is your current favorite designer?There are so many designers I admire, but currently I'm really into Cushnie et Ochs. Designers Michelle Ochs and Carly Cushnie are relatively recent Parsons grads.
What are your favorite materials to work with and why?Being in product development, I don't get to interact with materials as often as students in the design track. When I do, I tend to gravitate to softer, lighter knits.
What is the craziest thing you've seen in the studio?I wouldn't say anything too crazy goes on in studio. The amount of time people tend to stay there can be crazy, though—people often sleep there during "hell week." Our building is also the only "wet” building on campus, so sometimes students like to have a few adult beverages while working.
How often do you get a full 8 hours of sleep?Lately, not often. Unfortunately, I sleep poorly regardless of workload!
What is your favorite piece in your collection?The mauve-colored pants. They're the epitome of versatility. They could easily be dressed up or down, making them ideal for travel. The open sides and modified peplum are interesting additions to your trendy, active wear–inspired pant. I would love to see this in a silk blend, but because my collection focuses on apparel that travels well, silk didn't seem like an appropriate material.
Once the show is over, what will be your vice of choice?Celebrity gossip and going out with friends!
Other than the above, what are your plans post-graduation?I'd like to travel to visit friends and family over the summer while continuing to interview for jobs. I've also started applying to graduate school and law school. Mostly I'm excited to kind of figure things out at my own pace for a little bit instead of being rushed off to co-op or back to school semester after semester. I can't wait to read some good books, continue learning Italian, and move into a new apartment!
Name: Umbreen (Bree) Qureshi
Focus: Fashion Design
Describe your collection:My collection is inspired by my quest to find balance while backpacking through Southeast Asia, Europe, and Africa last semester, as well as the desire to embrace my own heritage and mixed background.
Who is your current favorite designer?The brand I respect most is Maiyet. Their collaboration with Nest, an independent nonprofit, is something that really hits home for me. As I grow as a designer, I hope to follow their lead and incorporate indigenous handicrafts into my work. I believe the fashion industry is full of untapped potential to enhance the lives of women around the world through collaboration and thoughtful support. I would like to be a part of that.
What are your favorite materials to work with and why?I only work with natural fibers. I think as the tide changes and people become more thoughtful about the quality of products they bring into their lives, it’s important for us designers to provide sustainable options.
What is the craziest thing you've seen in the studio?Nothing "good crazy" ever happens in studio, and I’m not sure the “bad crazy” is worth mentioning. I will say that the chaos usually starts with people accidentally sewing through fingers and ends in some sort of meltdown. Luckily, after five years we’ve become a family. There’s almost always someone around to calm the situation down and make light of things.
How often do you get a full 8 hours of sleep?It is very rare. The past month has basically been a series of naps on whatever surface we crash onto—window sills, vacant rooms, closets, tables, etc. One of our professors even brought a futon into her knit room. At any given moment you could find a student curled up on it.
What is your favorite piece in your collection?Man, that’s tough. I think my favorite piece is a double-layered cashmere and mink wool coat. It was one of the pieces I struggled with so much from design through construction that I almost cut it. Luckily a good friend convinced me not to give up on it, and now it’s my proudest accomplishment. My favorite look is my final look. It was inspired by a musician by the name of Afromoses I befriended while in Bali. Every time I look at it I’m flooded with memories of my trip.
Once the show is over, what will be your vice of choice?Definitely my daily yoga practice! My trip centered around my visit to the Ashtanga Yoga Bali Research Center. I needed to regain some perspective and find some balance in such a chaotic life, and the AYBRC (along with my amazing teachers) provided me exactly that. My time studying yoga was what sparked the entire collection and being away from it for so long has been really difficult. Luckily, I have a great studio in Cincinnati waiting for me as soon as I come back down to earth.
Other than the above, what are your plans post-graduation?I am excited about so many things that picking one option seems impossible right now. There are design, photography, and literary projects that I’ve had on the back burner for a few years. I hope to spend a little bit of time exploring some of those. I hope to continue creating as much as possible while searching for a job that allows me to grow as a designer.
We'd like to wish all of our featured designers good luck at the fashion show tonight! This may be the end of the DAAP Fashion Series, but make sure you follow Cincinnati Magazine on Facebook and @CincinnatiMag on Twitter for our regularly scheduled style updates!
Photos by Lauren Kremer
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