Apparel design major Ja'mareia Bonner prepares her designs for the spring 2015 fashion show. Photo by Melquan Ganzy/Opinions editor

Fashion Inc. … it’s more than just looking fly

September 14, 2015

You may or may not have heard of Fashion Inc., an organization in the department of human sciences.

According to Baheeyah Madnay, an apparel design senior as well as the newly elected president of Fashion Inc., Fashion Inc., is ready to set the tone.

Between Fashion Inc.’s spring executive board elections and it’s first general body meeting, Fashion Inc. has created new branding projects, and service opportunities and has planned its annual spring fashion show, with the theme, Era of Time. 

But how can Fashion Inc. get people  intrigued in joining the organization? “That’s a million dollar question,” said Madnay. “It seems as if everyone in Fashion Inc. is an apparel design student.”

Although the majority of Fashion Inc.’s members are studying apparel design, students don’t have to be  apparel design majors to join Fashion Inc.

“Are people interested in the ins and outs of the fashion industry or are people interested in looking fly?” asked Madnay.

There’s more to the fashion industry than appearance. Designers can focus on target marketing, creating brands and more.

“If people are just interested in dressing nice, then maybe we should host programs and events that gears towards ‘dressing nice’ because Fashion Inc. offers so much more,” said Madnay.

Fashion Inc. gives aspiring designers, fashion buyers, fashion journalists, and creative directors the opportunity to get experience by producing an annual competitive fashion show.

“We just want students to be involved with Fashion Inc. and to attend our fashion show,” said Madnay, “I don’t feel as if it would put someone in a hardship to come to our fashion show.”

“The fashion show is literally 5 bucks. You can save 5 bucks in a month,” said Madnay,

At last spring’s Fashion Inc.’s “Fashion Meets Art” show there weren’t as many people as the organization hoped at NCCU’s McLendon–McDougald, a gym that holds more than 3,000. “The floor seats were full, but in terms of the gym, there wasn’t that many people,” said Madnay. Despite the fact that the organization had announced the event for weeks on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook.

“I can’t even say if Chancellor Deborah Saunders-White has ever attended a show,” said Madnay. “I’m unsure.”

Wadeeyah Beyah, Fashion Inc.’s adviser, said last year’s production was the best it has ever been and that she has never seen so many creative designers in a single show.

Apparel design students face many challenges. They are responsible for purchasing all the materials they need for their courses, as well as for the fashion lines they create for the show.

“We buy everything,” chuckled Madnay. “We purchase the notations, the fabric, sewing machines and other necessities.”

And it’s not just financial resources that fashion students pour into their major. Some fashion design students report that they often work up to 15 hours a day for weeks preparing for the show.

“If there’s a group of people working really hard, the school should support those students,” said Madnay. “People cry. The production for the fashion show is stressful. I mean it’s a lot of hard work, and it would mean a lot for the student body and administration to come to our show, especially when you put so much time and money into the show.”

Last year, 30 students entered the design competition. “Mrs. Beyah managed to assist every hard working student,”Madnay said. She’s a small petite woman but she’s strong mentally and physically. There’s a lot of pressure on the students and Mrs. Beyah– she’s phenomenal,” she added.

Next year’s fashion show will be held during Spring Fling, on April 14.


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