5 Designers That Got Their Start at the FIDM DEBUT Runway Show

Each year, a handful of emerging designers are selected to be featured in FIDM’s annual DEBUT Runway Show.

Thousands of people attend this event —which takes place over the course of three days — to see the work of these students graduating from FIDM’s Fashion Design and Theatre Costume Design Advanced Study programs, as well as FIDM’s Textile Design, Interior Design, and Digital Media students.

FIDM is still taking reservations for their 2016 DEBUT Runway Show on Friday, April 1, (a.k.a. the biggest night of the year!). Visit FIDM.EDU to RSVP, or sign up here to stream the show live.

Many FIDM DEBUT graduates have gone on to launch successful careers in the fashion industry, including the five designers featured below:

1. Monique Lhuillier

Designs worn by: Taylor Swift, Jennifer Lawrence, Kerry Washington

This FIDM alumna’s career skyrocketed tremendously after showcasing her first collection at FIDM DEBUT. Known for her gorgeous evening gowns and elegant bridal wear, a plethora of A-list celebrities have graced the red carpet, as well as tied the knot, wearing Monique Lhuillier. According to FIDM Fashion Design Program Director Mary Stephens, “she [Lhuiller] designed a wedding collection [for FIDM DEBUT], and made every single rose on her garments by hand.”

2. Nick Verreos

Designs worn by: Beyoncé, Katy Perry, Carrie Underwood

Many know Verreos as a former contestant of Project Runway and the winner of Project Runway: Under the Gunn, but did you know that he’s also an alumnus and longtime instructor at FIDM? Since rising to fame, Verreos launched high-end clothing line NIKOLAKI. The designer’s infectious personality and guru-level knowledge of fashion has also landed him on E! Entertainment, Style Network, and TV Guide as a “red carpet expert.”

3. Bradon McDonald

From dancer to designer. Before graduating from FIDM and launching his collection at the DEBUT Runway Show, McDonald received a degree in dance from The Julliard School. It was his performing arts background that inspired his dancewear collection that’s currently sold through CAPEZIO. McDonald is also a former Project Runway contestant who made it to the final round.

4. Octavius Terry

Designs worn by: Ariana Grande, Queen Latifah, Mary J. Blige

Terry has successfully hit the ground running since graduating from FIDM’s Advanced Fashion Design program. Aside from being a designer to the stars, he recently launched a menswear collection and “full-service tuxedo lounge” called GROOM.

5. Randolph Duke

Designs worn by: Angelina Jolie, Tyra Banks, Faith Hill 

Duke took part in FIDM’s DEBUT Runway Show before their Advanced Fashion Design program was introduced. In 1996, he was crowned the title of chief creative and design director of Halston. Recognized as the designer that “resurrected the iconic brand in 1996,” he eventually went on to launch his own self-titled designer label.

It doesn’t end there. See what other successful FIDM DEBUT Alumni have accomplished since graduating here.

Don’t forget – you can live stream the 2016 DEBUT Runway Show on Friday, April 1, at this link!

Follow FIDM on Twitter @FIDM.

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