Elizabeth Adams
Setauket, NY

I design to create a new perspective on femininity. I want to strike a nostalgic chord, reminding those who wear my designs of a youthful spirit, still present in their womanhood. I am half Iranian with strong ties to my roots, which always inspire me. The rich use of color, texture, and fabric from Persia always inspired me. Growing up, I became enamored with dresses and gowns. I loved the iconic feminine look, but mixed with a hint of adventure. FIT quickly captivated me with the capabilities, technologies, and history of knitwear. As a daydreamer, my designs emulate a world of fantastical adventure and childlike wonder. It is drenched in a faded hue from an old photograph, touched by texture, all created to placate my inner child growing into the modern woman yet to be discovered.

Sarah Angel
Oslo, Norway

I moved to New York in 2010 to pursue my dreams. In 2013, I participated in the International Fashion Design program at Politecnico di Milano, in Milan, Italy. During my year in Milan, I chose knitwear as my field of in-depth study. Still, my interest in fashion design is equally divided between knitwear and sportswear, resulting in a desire to fuse the two fields and work in untraditional ways. I find inspiration everywhere, though my work is predominantly driven by the desire to create a visual expression of the intangible, such as music and emotions. Furthermore, my love for the arts and foreign languages has led me to complete minors in art history, Spanish, and Italian.

Anthony Argentina
Long Island, NY

“Some people are born to create art while others learn to do it. You, my dear, are one of those who has simply learned to do it.” These words have equally haunted and motivated me since the day they escaped from my high school teacher’s lips. As the youngest of seven children, I always wanted to stand out as in individual, and I yearned to feel special, praiseworthy, and unique. It was not until my late high school years and a basic fashion illustration course that light would be shed onto this strength. I design and create to push boundaries, because I see beauty where others do not, both in themselves and the world around them. I design because of the allure that clothing can give to absolutely anyone. I design because it is in my blood and I was born to create new, intriguing, and inspiring pieces.

Sakshi Awal
Pune, India

Great design to me is about feeling great in one’s skin. I create comfortable clothes with simple and organic shapes and a focus on mixing different textures. Knitwear gives me the best outlet for that. I use different yarns, earthy tones, subtle and muted colors mixed within a neutral palette to create my design aesthetic. I started early. As a young girl I sketched a lot and cut up my clothes. When I was 18, I decided to pursue it as a career and traveled to Milan to study fashion and textile design. After completing a year I moved to New York with a dream. Designing gives me a rush that I take with me on a daily basis as I create my version of fashion.

Ka Yee Chan
Hong Kong, China

Being the youngest child, I would often wear my sisters’ and brother’s pass-over clothes. The pass-over clothes were all fine clothes, but sometimes I just wanted my own things, something that belong to me and something different. I like to create with my hands. I used to make gifts for my family and friends because I didn’t really have an allowance. I enjoyed the process of making the gifts and thought that it was meaningful. Creating things with my own hands brought me into fashion design. I wanted to know the proper way of making clothes. I wanted to create clothes that are wearable and fun. I want people to enjoy the unique pieces they wear.

Kaylyn Cheek
Clifton, NJ

I have wanted to be a designer since I was in the seventh grade. I was always caught sketching in the corner of my notebooks rather than taking notes. I was captivated by the world of fashion and art and the idea of making something special out of simple materials, or taking inspiration from the world and making it my own thing. I could not imagine life without the expression that art and fashion gives me. When I design, I really think about how it would make a woman look, how it would flatter her and make her feel empowered and beautiful. Fashion is wearable art, where beauty meets function. Fashion challenges me and pushes my creativity and problem-solving skills, and I wouldn’t have it any other way.

Morgan Cole
Eden, NY

At the age of 3, I first learned to sew. Even though I didn’t know it then, I’ve wanted to be a designer my whole life. My grandmother taught me to make Barbie dresses, and I couldn’t accept the simplicity of the ones that we were making. I wanted more. Over the years I continued to sew clothing. By junior high, I had decided that I would turn my favorite hobbies into a career. I continued sewing and eventually learned to knit, which became my passion. To me, the infinite world of combining yarns and stitches is so intriguing, and I look forward to a career full of endless learning and experimentation in knitwear.

Vanessa Coote
Hopatcong, NJ

Ever since I was a little girl, I would carry a backpack filled with crayons, markers, papers, and books everywhere I went. My love of creating, designing, and expressing myself started very young. Trying new techniques in my coloring book thrilled me. When it was time to pick a college, I knew FIT was where I belonged. I started by receiving an associate degree in Fashion Merchandising Management and made my way into fashion design. A simple knitting class during stress relief week at school kicked off my knitwear obsession. I challenged myself to learn every technique I could find. Now, not only can I design the silhouette of a garment, I can design the textile that went into it. Knitwear equaled total creative freedom limited only by my imagination. I love bringing an emotional feel to my design through color, texture, and structure. Designing knitwear is an extension of myself.

Michele Christina Copeland
Washington, D.C.

I chose to study fashion design because I wanted to make a difference in the fashion industry as far as designing clothing for all body types. I want be known for designing wearable, modern, and minimalist clothing. I believe that everyone deserves to feel confident and I can make that possible by designing a garment that would make a greater difference. What makes me unique, as a designer and as a person, is that I love people and I love to design clothing. I feel that the original ingredient, which is love, is often overlooked and that’s what I will deliver as a designer: clothing that makes you feel good inside and out.

Grace Eleanor Cox
Miami, FL

I am from Miami and grew up surrounded by art. This upbringing no doubt influenced my future path. My artist mother and interior designer father helped me figure out how to express myself visually, but I still had to pave my own way. My art made its way to the human body and I realized it worked. Color, shape, texture—it’s simply sculpting around the body. There are no limits, especially with knitwear. I hope that everyone will be able to feel what I feel when they see what I create. Sometimes letting go of control creates something better than what you could merely design.

Rochele Gloor
Porto Alegre, Brazil

Studying and working in the medical science field in Brazil was a great intellectual experience. However, I felt that the creative side of me was suppressed, so I decided to move to New York and pursue my childhood passion at FIT. Here I found fashion design to be the perfect combination for achieving my professional goals and expressing my values and ideas. And as a knitwear designer, it’s fascinating to know there is so much I can develop and innovate, especially since I see knitwear as a scientific art where both creativity and technology play major roles. I believe that by working hard and having the technology to bring ideas to reality, there are no limits to imagination!

Nicole Goh
Long Island, NY

I chose knitwear as my specialization because of how technical it is. If you don’t experiment with all of the different techniques yourself, you will never understand how far knitting can go. The need for experimenting with stitches and yarn forces you to grow as a designer and develop your creativity. I try to make all my designs feel personal, like a handwritten note. I’m constantly inspired by personal mementos and how we interpret them—a sweater, a locket, or a fading photograph. They all hold different meanings, which is why we choose to hold on to them or toss them. Being able to create the very thing that can hold such memories is the reason I became a designer.

Jimin Hwang
Seoul, South Korea

What makes us different? I believe this question can be answered in so many ways. Personally one of the most colorful ways to express who we are is through fashion. I design and make clothes to be who I am and help understand who we are, as different as we can get. I’ve always had a keen interest in colors and shapes having been raised in multiple cultures, and understanding and learning the different customs has become second nature for me. Accepting that we are all different yet the same has become very important in my design process. I want to send out a positive message that we are more than perfect for our differences.

Min Ji Kim
Seoul, South Korea

Because of my mother, art and music have been the biggest part of my life since I was a child. She always took me to many exhibitions and concerts. And thanks to my open-minded parents, I traveled the world; I could see, feel, and learn various things from my travels. All of these experiences have made me into the unique designer I am today. I began my study in product design at a university in Korea, but I felt it was not for me, so I gave myself a break to study English in New York for a year. That’s where my journey to fashion began. I fell in love with New York and unexpected events that come with living in the city. I love New York, which is dynamic and energetic but also artistic and fashionable. So I settled in New York because I am inspired by the diversity here. I aim to not only to design beautiful garments, but also to tell stories through my work.

Dongeun Kwon
South Korea

I believe that fashion develops confidence. Fashion—clothes, accessories, and makeup—can positively influence a person’s behavior and attitude. Every morning, the first thing I think about is what to wear. My choices can express my feelings and also affect how I feel throughout the day. Since I moved to New York seven years ago, I was more exposed to art and fashion culture. Fashion empowers and enables me to draw attention from others. My passion for fashion has inspired me to think about becoming a designer. “Fine feathers make fine birds.” My philosophy as a designer is to give strength and comfort to others with my choices of style and designs.

Ji Yeon Lee
Seoul, South Korea

Born the middle of three children in Seoul, South Korea, my passion for fashion began as a high school student in Canada when I first bought a sewing machine for myself. I started to re-form old clothing into a new design. Taking three years of sewing in high school gave me the capacity to come to FIT. Fashion design represents who I am as a designer and the best designer is the one who truly understands and knows the customer. My goal is to design clothes that make every woman look beautiful and modern in what she wears.

Su Jung Lee
South Korea

I believe that the religion of fashion design is more powerful and attractive than any other religion that exists now. It attracts people more easily than any other religion and gives them graceful satisfaction. That is why I am into fashion. How nice it is to be a god to others. Blurring gender lines and contrasting colors are the focus of my designs. Different design elements are able to merge together, harmonizing regardless of their clear opposition. Menswear inspired silhouettes and mix-match knit and woven fabric aid the visual balance of my collection with the will to evolve the definition of beauty.

Stephanie Len
Marlboro, New Jersey

I first became interested in fashion when I was 12 years old. I had stumbled upon Japanese street fashion by chance, and I became hooked. The unique and ornate styles made me realize the immense amount of soul that can be put into clothing. Clothing can be used to exemplify the individual and their inner self. Because of this, fashion can have a profound impact on people. The beauty of it all is that there are as many different perspectives of fashion as there are people on earth. There is no right or wrong way to wear clothing, it is all up to the individual to decide.

Alexis M. Lucas
Valley Stream, NY

At the age of 6, as I dressed my Barbie dolls, I decided that I wanted to be a fashion designer. I decided that I was going to create looks for women (and for myself when I grew up to be a woman) that suited my mood and my aesthetic, as well as anyone who shared my aesthetic. I took an interest in visual forms of art in general but the human female form as a subject of art appealed to me the most. That segued into women’s fashion. Whatever non-human object, or phenomena, or concept I take my inspiration from I think about how I can use the details of that inspiration to create a character or assert certain traits a person might possess.

Ou Ma
Beijing, China

I remember the breathtaking moments when I watched a live runway show from fall 2005 Paris couture collections. That was the first time ever that I felt a deep passion and enthusiasm light up in my heart—fashion is what I wanted to pursue in my life! A focus art when I was little, growing up in a family with an exposure to international cultures, four years of sociology at a university, and four years of fashion design at FIT has given me a unique background. What I have read, seen, felt, and experienced made me the person and designer I am today. Fashion could be storytelling or self-expression, but it should reflect life. I have always wanted to create something warm, organic, and comfortable that feels real to me and can be connected to others.

Melissa Mendoza
New York, NY

At the prime age of 10, I decided I wanted to become a fashion designer. I always grew up small and petite and my mother never allowed me to buy better quality clothes. She would always give me a strict reminder of what we were able to afford when we’d go school clothes shopping. Also I hated to go shopping, because nothing ever fit. I wanted to design clothes for myself. Studying fashion design in college has taught me that I have a distaste for the industry and its monetary value system. I now want to reintroduce slow fashion to the industry to remind people of the art that was associated with fashion.

Jamila Modeste
Brooklyn, NY

I decided to pursue a career in fashion design because I love to create. Throughout my life, I’ve been surrounded by a creative family, whether it was my mom sewing a dress, my cousin painting portraits, or my dad creating a new concoction in the kitchen. Creating something new and something of value has always been my passion. With knitwear design, I can combine different fibers and spin my own yarns and then knit something tangible that I can wear. And the feeling that comes with making something that you have a passion for is like no other.

Jennifer Nazath
Red Bank, NJ

When I was in the fourth grade, my elementary school had its annual career day—a day every student looked forward to. My friend’s mother, a fashion designer, came in to present. From that day forward, I knew I wanted to be a designer. Not too long after that I decided I wanted to go to FIT to pursue my dream. In fact, it was the only school I applied to. I learned to sew and I took every class I could to build my skills in areas like sketching and draping. I began interning in high school with the same woman who came in years before for career day. She has since become my mentor. Designing is a passion. It may be a challenge at times, but that challenge drives me. It is my passion.

Kait Newkirk
Saugerties, NY

My education in fashion design started at 7 years old, with a “mommy and me” sewing class. My interest in fashion started right after, while sitting at a sewing machine for the first time. This interest evolved from a hobby to a passion, and I knew I wanted to be a fashion designer. I loved the creative freedom of taking fabric and draping it to become whatever I imagined in my head. Naturally, knitwear was the perfect next step. I was able to actually create the fabric rather than manipulate it, using a nearly endless variety of yarns, stitches, and gauges. While my love of fashion was forming, so was my love of nature and its preservation, something I try to incorporate into my designs. My intention when creating my garments is to merge fashion with nature and sustainability in a harmonious and beautiful way.

Melissa Ngo
Valley Stream, NY

I was exposed to design at a very early age. I had my first sewing lesson at the age of 6, where my grandma taught me how to join two pieces of scrap fabric with a simple sewing needle and thread. Likewise, I am fortunate to have an artistic mother, who also graduated with her associate degree in fashion design from FIT in 1982. It is no surprise that I developed a passion for the art of making clothes and pursued a major in fashion design. For me, the design process is incredibly satisfying. Learning a new stitch or understanding how to master the Brother machine is just as important as making a finished garment. I am most inspired by textures and tend to use neutral colors mixed with pops of strong color.

Macshella Oduro
Queens, NY

I’ve always taken an interest in architecture and nature. I’ve been moved by the likes of the Spanish architect Gaudi. Apart from getting my AAS in fashion design at FIT, I studied overseas at Politecnico di Milano in Italy and at Nottingham Trent University in England for more than half of my BFA. These schools and cultures have opened my mind to new aspects of life. Bearing that in mind, I design for a woman who loves to enjoy life by dressing in bold colors and textiles. Being exposed to various cultures, I am inspired by how the drape of a garment speaks to a woman through her movement. I make an effort to fuse eveningwear into knitwear design, giving a woman satisfaction of how comfortable and moveable a garment can be.

Jing Ying (Bella) Ou
Taichung, Taiwan

1 Noun: Passenger
4 Adjectives: Curious, Unsatisfied, Contradictive, Experimental
5 Sentences:
Fashion as art.
Art can elevate thinking, art can reach the stage of awakening.
Growing up and learning is a form of art, and it is the biggest development process.
Living the moment is eternity.
I am on the way, still defining my work and myself.
1 Quote:
“I was not very sure that I would become a so-called ‘fashion designer.’ The term ‘fashion designer’ sounded very light. … When I think about the image of a fashion designer, I have to think about what’s new, what’s next, what kind of feeling customers want. It’s too busy for me.” – Yohji Yamamoto

Sehyun Park
Seoul, South Korea

The most attractive thing about fashion is that it can be approached as an art that is closely related to people in everyday life. It is definitely a designer’s self-expression, but it can be completed by the people who wear it. This unique characteristic of fashion, communication and sympathy with people, attracts me a lot. I am a visual person who is always considering how I can express my design more visually and effectively. In terms of visual effect, knitwear can be shown with various textures, from structural boldness to feminine touch. I want to keep exploring myself with this attractive medium, and I believe that I will establish a more polished, unique identity as a designer.

Jeongah Yoo
Seoul, South Korea

When I was young, I always dreamed of being an artist. But, at that time, I did not have any details about my dream. I just wanted to imagine and think about making it a real thing. So I tried many artistic activities such as fine art, music, and ballet. However, as I got older, I realized that my interests and passions always leaned toward to fashion. When I see a person who wears a gorgeous outfit on the street, I cannot stop thinking about clothes all day. When I watch movies, I concentrate on the fashion and not the story. So I decided to study fashion design and be a fashion designer.

Jeanette Yu
Chicago, IL

Since the age of 5, art has been a significant part of my life. Growing up, I was always drawing, dancing, singing, and playing the piano. However, fashion has been my true passion. After watching my grandmother make clothes for many years, I developed an appreciation for the art of making clothes and I was inspired to pursue my interest further. My journey began when I was accepted at FIT. I learned so much about the fashion industry by interning and volunteering for New York Fashion Week. When I learned more about the construction of knits, I fell in love with designing my own knit fabrics. I want to create clothes that are simple and comfortable with unique details that make them effortless.

FIT, State University of New York

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