Identities 2012: From the Runway Apr08


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Identities 2012: From the Runway

This past Easter Weekend, Harvard’s Annenberg Hall was the setting for an all together different sort of service. Identities, one of the college’s two annual fashion shows, has traditionally been a late April affair, but this year, the show was moved a few weeks earlier to coincide nicely with Good Friday. Despite a wash of springtime pastels on the runway, there was nothing remotely reverent about this year’s show, which delivered the goods in three distinct segments, two women’s and one men’s. Looks ran the fashion gamut from neon trimmed backpacks and blue sequined jackets to pink leather sheath dresses and tailored three piece suits.What held the show’s disparate parts together was the idea of a beautiful illusion, a theme the show’s six creative directors all interpreted in their own way.

Besides giving Harvard students a taste of the fashion industry, The Identities board also honors one Asian American designer every year with its Leadership in the Arts award. This year, the guest of honor was young designer Jen Kao, whose irrepressible designs–think sexy body suits, snail motif crop tops and feathered cocktail dresses–were shown in a mini runway presentation. Kao’s acceptance speech afterwards intoned the value of following one’s dreams at all costs, monetary or otherwise, a sentiment many in the audience (and backstage) could certainly relate to.

Maybelline New York, Mr. Porter, ASOS, Derek Lam, Rent the Runway, and SUITSUPPLY were among the sponsors who lent promotional product and clothing samples to Identities this year, essentially allowing the show, which has no budget for acquiring looks, to happen. The show was executive produced by juniors Allan Hsiao and Elaine Kim with Bonnie Wong and Meryl Natow (all Class of 2013) as Associate Producers. The Creative Directors this year were Elaine Cheng 15′, Racheal Epstein 13′, Rachel Chanen 15′, Vicky Ge 12′, Jay Drummond 15′ and yours truly.

As one of this year’s creative directors, I could drone at length about every detail of the show’s theme, its highlights and lowlights, its pre- and post- production, but seeing as such words generally fall miserably short of reality, I will exercise restraint and just show you some pretty pictures from the show.



Segment 1: What Makes a Lady

CD’s: Elaine Cheng and Racheal Epstein


Photography: Dean Shu and Shunella Lumas



Segment 2: An Education

CD’s: Jay Drummond and Thomas Dai


Photography: Dean Shu, Shunella Lumas and Sam Lipoff


Segment #3: Double Take

CD’s: Rachel Chanen and Vicky Ge


Photography: Dean Shu, Shunella Lumas and Sam Lipoff



-Thomas Dai 14′