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Fashion Design News



“In demonstrating natural dyeing for the Introduction to Textiles class, it showed the original way fabric was dyed using herbs, flowers, and vegetables.  We used turmeric and red cabbage as the dye sources.  The experiment also showed students a more sustainable way to dye fabric using natural dyes as well as how much time and energy it takes to make the beautiful colors we see in our clothing today.” – Professor, Leslie Simpson

On Monday, March 30th, 2015, Professor Leslie Simpson and I demonstrated a natural fabric dying with her Introduction to Textiles class.  We began with boiling water in two pots on an electric portable double burner.  Once the water came to a rolling boil we added hand shredded week old red cabbage to one pot, turmeric powder to the other pot, and a tablespoon of kosher salt to each pot.  Following the steps in a natural dying video tutorial we found (the link is posted below), we allowed the red cabbage and the turmeric to boil for 30 minutes. While the dye was boiling I pre-soaked our strips of natural fabrics in warm water.  Once the red cabbage was finished boiling, Professor Simpson, strained the dye, and poured the water, free of cabbage pieces, back into the pot.  We then split our fabric in half, placing half of our natural fabrics in the turmeric pot and the other half in the red cabbage pot, which we then let boil for 45 minutes.  The students participated by pulling the fabric strips from the dye, rising, and drying it. 










Please check out the helpful YouTube video we used as a guideline for our natural dye test: “How-To Make Your Own Natural Dye with the EtsyLabs”

We are extremely pleased to share with you that the PGM-PRO Inc., a company that specialized in manufacturing dress forms, has donated three dress forms to the Stevenson University Fashion Design Program through their PGM 2015 Educational Sponsorship Program!

Our program is grateful to Ms. Rebecca Ustrell, the Education Purchasing and Donations Director, for working with our Program Coordinator, Sally DiMarco, over the last month to make the donation happen for our students.

Included are pictures and testimonials about the forms from our senior student, Katie Ellsworth, who is draping a garment of an original design for her Senior Collection on a PGM form, and sophomore students, Benish Masih and Tiffany Street, draping with gingham on the PGM dress forms during their Draping I class. 



Benish Masih – “I love that the PGM forms have collapsible shoulders, and that the height is so  easily adjustable. I am short and this makes it much easier for me to drape on them as compared to other forms I have worked with.”











Tiffany Street – “I like that PGM creates forms that are more realistic to the natural body.  Since the forms already include breasts and backsides, I believe that my draping is much more accurate.”








Katie Ellsworth – “I enjoy using PGM Model forms for several reasons. I specifically enjoy the amount of padding, which allows for ease of pinning and security of the drape. I also appreciate the legs; which is a new development in our studio mannequins. Overall, the forms are well proportioned."   








We look forward to a long-term partnership with the PGM-PRO Company. 


[Future Scholars: Keralin, Sdhari, Erin, and Jennifer]

This past Saturday, on February 14th, we hosted a handful of future fashion design students and their families in the design studio.  Future students, Keralin, Sdhari, Jennifer, and Erin, spent the morning learning about the program and engaged in hands-on projects. 


Our Fashion Design Program Coordinator, Ms. Sally Di Marco, gave a brief overview of the program.  Ms. Erika Yuille, the Fashion Design Studio Manager, gave the ladies hands-on demonstrations on the irons, industrial sewing machines, and provided materials so that the students could play with our felting machine.  Professor Leslie Simpson, demonstrated how to use the sergers and then gave the ladies fabric so that they could practice using the machines.  Our Senior Fashion Design Technician, Fara Topolsky, engaged with our future students, as well as their parents, and displayed her stunning Senior Collection.


In honor of Valentine’s Day, we provided each scholar with an FDES Goody Bag, handmade felted hearts, and Valentine’s Day themed snacks.


The Stevenson University Fashion Design Program will be holding two more model calls for the program's annual show, "A Common Thread," in May 2015. 

To audition for this year’s fashion show, please attend either of these two model call dates:

Tuesday, February 24th, 2015 – 6:00pm to 8:30pm


Sunday, March 1st, 2015 – 10:00am to 2:00pm

These model calls will be held on the Owings Mills campus at Rockland in the Fashion Design Studio, which is located in the back of Rockland in room 008.

This show is a consistently sold out event and is attended by local industry professionals from companies such as Under Armour, J. Crew, and Nordstrom.

The program's design students are looking for both female and male models to audition.

No experience is required and although this is a serious production, it is also a lot of fun!

Feel free to send an email to any of the show producers listed below for more information. Hope to see you there!


Jocelyn Williams:
Nakia Boomer:
Katie Ellsworth:


100 Campus Circle

Owings Mills, MD 21117



Exactly one week from today on Thursday, February 19th, Stevenson University Fashion Design students, along with three alumni, will be showcasing their designs at Plitz Fashion Marketing during New York Fashion Week! 









Everyone is full of excitement and stress! Since students were unable to attend a model call in New York for the fashion show they were each assigned their own model, rather than being responsible for finding their own model. However, each designer was responsible for contacting the model assigned to them to discuss measurements, shoes, and accessories. 

Students are working around the clock to complete their garments, coordinate their garments with the size and height of their models, and make travel and hotel arrangements for their stay in New York.

One of our students, Sherese Mclean, posted to her Facebook page, “Like my dress is gonna be in a fashion show during New York fashion week in 8 days. This can't be real. All I can do is thank God for the amazing opportunity!”

The Plitz Fashion Show during New York’s 2015 Fashion Week will be held at the historic Hotel Pennsylvania, which is located in the heart of the garment district.  Tickets for this event will be sold at the door for $20 per person....Click here to read more.

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