Saidah Murphy in cultural wear

By Jenna Wos, Staff Writer

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*Photo courtesy of Jenna Wos/MJ
“Fashion kills” said Eiman Hairston, minutes before he hit the catwalk. He was one of 10 members of the Black Student Union, who modeled at their “Rip the Runway” fashion show in Kochoff Hall A on Thursday, Oct. 9.

According to President, Theresa Sommerville, this was the first fashion show the BSU has put on since 1992.

The group puts on an annual talent show, “Night of Soul,” but wanted to do something different, in hopes of picking up the old tradition.

Fall is a time for fashion, Sommerville said, and in the midst of Culture and Diversity week, there wasn’t a better time to show off their style.

“It is a different type of event for this campus,” said Saidah Murphy, former president and current member of the BSU.

The fashion show was inspired by the BET show with the same name, and featured three local Detroit designers:

The Carpe Diem Company was created by Austin Lee, a childhood friend of BSU’s Student Representative, Natasha Gilbert, and focuses on artistic design using the best fabric possible. “Remember to always SEIZE THE DAY, because tomorrow is never promised.”

Enviee Chic is an online store created by Chantel Poe that specializes in women’s apparel and accessories. “Always have a style that is Envied!”

DebStyle is an independent clothing line created by Ms. Deb and showcases classic and timeless styles. “The image a person projects is a lasting one.”

The BSU started planning this event on the first day of school, according to Sommerville. The members were all very excited about it and looked forward to seeing the whole thing come together.

“It is always a group effort,” said Gilbert. Everyone helped with everything, so the weight was evenly distributed.

“We definitely worked as a team,” said Vice President Jerel Jones. “We all just wear multiple hats,” added Secretary Jennifer Golida.

The most stressful part, Jones said, was trying to find people to model for each category: business wear, athletic wear, cultural wear, and urban wear all consisted of clothes chosen by the members dispersed between clothes featured by the designers.

The students modeled The Carpe Diem Company, and Enviee Chic’s designs, while DebStyle provided her own models.

Gilbert was nervous to walk the runway. “When I’m up there, it’s just me,” she said, not used to being alone in the spotlight.

Murphy was most excited for the culture section, because she and her brother designed the outfits on the spot using her cloth, and because her two year old daughter, Lena, walked in her first fashion show (and got the most applause!).

Golida said that to help promote the event, fliers were posted around school, and on social media; both on the BSU’s and the members’ personal accounts. In attendance were students, alumni, and former BSU members.

The music, chosen by Jones, was high energy, “something the models could walk to with a good beat.” said Jones.

Anaiya Brown, Chris Holly, Tiyona Scott, Christian Cannon, and Gerard Roberson were a few of those who strutted their stuff along with Hairston, Murphy, and Gilbert, whose favorite look to model was a sleek black dress by Enviee Chic.

“This is one of many big things we’ve got going on this year,” Hairston said, “so stay tuned.”