Prabal Gurung, Alexander Wang, Chris Benz are all accomplished American designers, but that's not the only thing these young gents have in common. They were all participants of Fusion — an annual fashion-design competition between the students of the Fashion Institute of Technology and Parsons The New School For Design.
The program is the brainchild of Parsons alumni Jimmy Ramey, who was once a roommate of Gurung and Benz. Now in its fifteenth year, the competition continues to be a talent platform for freshman and sophomore students at two of the most respected fashion schools in the nation. "Fusion provides these up-and-comers with a taste of what they've always dreamed about — seeing their creations on the runway," Ramey said. "Some of them will never let go of that dream after the experience."
With such an impressive roster of past contestants, it's no surprise that Fusion has caught the eye of industry heavyweights. This year's panel of judges included top-of-the-masthead names such as Elle's Joe Zee, Teen Vogue's Mary Kate Steinmiller, and Scene's Peter Davis.
Picking a winner of a contest known as the 'Super Bowl of Fashion Institutions' is no easy feat. FIT students showed a flair for neutrals and experimentation on construction techniques, while Parsons students favored romantic evening looks and provocative sportswear. The judges crowned FIT this year's overall winner, and picked Madison Li (Parsons) and Joshua Homic (FIT) as the individual winners of their respective schools.