Kent State Grad Wins Fashion Design Competition
Kent State University Fashion School graduate Anastasia Iafrate was named this year’s winner of the prestigious Supima Design Competition during a Sept. 4 event at Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week in New York. Iafrate, who graduated in May with a Bachelor of Arts in fashion design, beat out finalists from five other institutions to win the award, which carries a $10,000 prize.
The competition challenged finalists to create a women’s eveningwear collection using Supima’s trademarked cotton fabrics, including corduroys, twills and denims. The culminating event was held at the Pavilion at Lincoln Center and featured a runway presentation of all six collections prior to the award announcement. The other institutions that sent finalists are the Academy of Art University, Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising, Fashion Institute of Technology, Rhode Island School of Design and Savannah College of Art and Design.
A Compelling Collection
“Anastasia Iafrate perfectly executed the beautiful, compelling artistic vision she presented in her sketches back in the spring,” said Buxton S. Midyette, Supima’s vice president of marketing and promotions. “In doing so with such facility and ingenuity, she opened up new exciting applications for Supima fabrics in fashion. The high quality of Anastasia’s presentation reflects not only on her talent and drive but on … the quality and integrity of Kent State’s Fashion School, its curriculum, faculty and administration.”
Iafrate’s collection “White Nights of St. Petersburg” was inspired by her native Russia — in particular, a wrought-iron gate in St. Petersburg, which informed the collection’s central design motif. She made extensive use of the Kent State Fashion School’s TechStyleLAB in reiterating the gate motif throughout “White Nights.”
“She effectively used TechStyleLAB equipment in creating laser-cut stencils, laser etching on denim and digital textile printing on the range of fine cotton fabrics provided by Supima,” said J.R. Campbell, director of Kent State’s Fashion School. “Her vision for the collection was strong, and she executed her design ideas in an exemplary manner. We are very proud of her representation of the Fashion School at Kent State University.”
Vince Quevedo, associate professor in Kent State’s School of Fashion Design and Merchandising, served as her faculty advisor throughout the Supima process.
Iafrate also has a bachelor’s degree in French and intercultural communication from Pyatigorsk State Linguistic University in Russia. After immigrating to the United States, she launched a residential and commercial cleaning business, which she continued to manage while enrolled at Kent State. Her senior collection “Interference” was shown in the Kent State Fashion School’s Annual Fashion Show earlier this year. “Interference” earned her not only the Supima nomination but also the award for best couture/conceptual collection.