CREO celebration of student fashion design moves online


This suit by Kristin Hardwick '20 won the Readers' Choice Award from MKE Lifestyle in 2020. Hardwick's designs will be among the works shown in the 2021 virtual CREO show premiering on Friday, May 14.

Video premiere event set for Friday, May 14

Following the trend of major design schools around the country, the CREO student designer fashion show will  be presented virtually this spring, said Fashion Department Chair Ashley Brooks. The virtual premiere will take place Friday, May 14.

“The Student Designer Fashion Show will be reimagined for 2021,” Brooks said. “Merchandise management students will capture fashion collections through a video featuring designs by both 2020 and 2021 fashion design major majors.”

The video format enables students to spotlight garments in a variety of settings. Students will film segments at locations around Milwaukee that complement the garments and designs.

This format actually gives this class much greater creative freedom to experiment with storytelling and the look and feel of the show than the runway production does,” said Brooks. “The video format will also make our show more accessible; we can share our students’ creations with a broader audience that isn't tied to geography or a limited number of available seats. We want this production to go viral and make it around the globe!"

The fashion video format is a trend within the industry due to the pandemic that has some unexpected benefits, said Mount Mary Fashion Executive Fellow Donna Ricco, who is one of the coordinators of this year's CREO presentation. 

“The fashion industry began showing new collections virtually last summer, and now fashion schools around the world are featuring students’ creativity through some amazing virtual presentations,” Ricco said. “This video production is an exciting opportunity for Mount Mary fashion students to broaden their experience by conceptualizing the runway presentation in a whole new way.”

Students will post progress updates on social media. Follow @MountMaryFashion for continual behind-the-scenes updates as the production unfolds.

“For over 50 years, the student fashion show has represented the importance of creativity by nurturing a unique brand of talent that results in new ways of thinking,” said Bob Schwartz, dean of the School of Arts and Design. “The fashion show is an important part of the annual celebration from Mount Mary University's School of Arts & Design that showcases student work from fashion, studio art, graphic design, and interior architecture and design.”

The Arts and Design Senior Exhibitions, featuring the work of students in studio arts, interior architecture and design, and graphic design will be presented in an online format this year as well. For information on these exhibits and the May 14 fashion video premiere, visit