UCSI University’s MIX Graduation Fashion Show 2017

Kuala Lumpur: At 2 pm, one Thursday in September, a file of eager spectators comprising of prominent figures in the fashion industry, families and friends mobbed the outside of UCSI University’s (UCSI) brand new academic building Le Quadri Ballroom. They were all excitedly waiting for De Institute of Creative Arts and Design’s (ICAD) sixth graduation fashion show. 

As the models calmly strutted down the runway to raucous tempos, the audience feasted their eyes on evocating ensembles by 10 graduating students of the Bachelor of Arts (Hons) Fashion Design with Marketing programme and four from the Diploma in Fashion Design programme. 

Aptly themed ‘MIX’, the fashion show essentially is about cultural diversity and the beauty of cultural exchange. The event displayed a mix of talent and creative ideas from seven different nationalities. Among the inspirations for the designs by the graduating students are the Chinese traditional costume Qipao and Hanfu, the Moroccan architecture, and the military uniform design during World War II. 

A tribute to her Nigerian roots and fascination towards butterflies for its intrinsic and fragile nature, Bachelor of Arts (Hons) Fashion Design with Marketing Akintola Abiola Kudirat incorporated the said insect’s structure and surface motif into her designs along with the message of the Butterfly Effect theory, which implies that a little change or detail can make a huge difference. 

It represents the collection — diversifying each piece by adding or removing a detail to change the overall outcome of the design. And it was this unique concept that won her the Best Collection Award in the Degree category. 

“I am so honoured to have received this award, I did not expect to win it,” said Akintola breathlessly, “Being a mother and a full-time student was challenging and trying but I have made it. This proves that even as a mother, I can still accomplish both.” 

Eveelyn Woon, with her collection titled ‘Queen of Hearts’ walked away with the Best Collection Award in the Diploma category. 

Deputy Director General (Promotion) from the Malaysia Ministry of Tourism and Culture Yang Berbahagia Dato’ Sri Abdul Khani Daud who was present at the event as the Guest of Honour, commended the University for providing its students with a platform to conceptualise their ideas and showcase their capabilities. 

“The power of youths cannot be underestimated. According to the Global Youth Development Index, an initiative of the Commonwealth Secretariat, the world’s youth population is at an all-time high, at 1.8 billion people aged 15 to 29. They are the largest generation in history. 

“There is no better time than now to cultivate our generation of youths, to prepare them for the future, to provide the best in education that matches the needs and demands of the creative industry. You are truly preparing your students to hit the ground running once they enter the world of fashion.” 

The event was also attended by the Founder of UCSI Group and Chairman of UCSI University Council Dato’ Peter Ng, as well as representatives from the Malaysian Design Council and the Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation Malaysia. 

Senior Professor Dato’ Dr Khalid Yusoff, the Vice-Chancellor and President of UCSI University who was also present at the event, encouraged the graduates to find a deeper meaning in their craft to create a lasting impact. 

“The glamour and glitz of the fashion industry are just the tip of the iceberg. Fashion is often viewed as transitional and highlights the trivialities rather than the depth and its ability to change lives. Fashion has a responsibility and stake in the environment, in creating livelihoods for artisans, in the economy, and in making society an inclusive place. 

“Ponder this: Can fashion be more sensitive to the disabled and take into account the needs of different body types? What is fashion’s role in sustaining the environment? It is in these answers that we will find deeper meaning, satisfaction and long-lasting success.” 

The event also featured an opening show by students of BINUS University — a prominent private higher education institution in Indonesia. 

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