Story by ANDREA LOPEZ, for The Muleskinner—
What started as having a burning passion for clothing and accessories, has begun to lead UCM senior Lauren Riddle well on her way to pursuing a career in fashion merchandising.
When given an assignment in fashion promotion class to make a textile design to brand UCM, Riddle, with no hesitation, got to work and a day later her masterpiece was created.
“When creating the textile print, I wanted to create a design that was going to be timeless,” Riddle said.
“A design that could be worn by everyone throughout the UCM community, and provide a way for every student, faculty, alumni and fan to come together as one.”
Sporting red, black and white, the design has been copyrighted as an official UCM print and has a patent pending.
Her original design was chosen and used to create men’s neckties and women’s scarves that are made of silk.
Each item is marked at $40, with all the proceeds going directly to the fashion program by contributing to the costs of future products, equipment, software, guest speakers and business field trips.
The product was ordered this past summer, samples were reviewed by fashion students in September, and the final product was delivered in the beginning of October.
Prior to the final product being supplied, the first sample was not correct.
Due to this, students had to apply their critical thinking skills to determine a proper solution while at the pressure of an approaching deadline.
The goal of this task was for students to take the coursework they had been learning in their academic program and applying their education to a project outside of the classroom.
“It helps us see how things work in a more realistic setting and makes textbook information come to life,” Riddle said.
Through this project, Riddle, along with her peers in the Fashion and Apparel Merchandising program, learned about all aspects of their chosen field.
This project included multiple aspects of the fashion industry, so it was an interactive learning experience throughout the entire program.
In the future, different classes will take on each part of the project as it relates to the coursework.
“By attending UCM, I have been given the opportunity to learn to a greater degree,” Riddle said. “The small university class sizes offered here and personal help from professors have given me the ability to experience fashion merchandising coursework come to life.”
The neckties and scarves are available for UCM students, faculty, alumni and fans by either emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or through the online store, which will open Dec. 1.