Students explore fashion, promote self expression through clothing

Susie You, staff reporter

As students quickly fill up the tables lined with individual sewing machines, they eagerly wait to start the first meeting of Fashion Club. The atmosphere is filled with students who share the same hobby and enjoy exchanging their ideas on fashion. However, outside of fashion club, students at South express themselves through fashion trends as well.

Sharon Kim, senior and creator of fashion club, explained what to expect at the club. According to Kim, students who may not have time in their schedule are encouraged to join the club, where they will have the opportunity to express their creativity and meet new people with the same hobby.

“[Fashion club] is practically a mini fashion class without all the rules, and so it’s really fun if you want to try to explore a new hobby and start a new activity,” Kim said.

According to Kim, however, starting up a new club posed various challenge such as structuring meetings, and finding a sponsor.

“[Creating fashion club] wasn’t easy at first, because as a sophomore and starting a club, [it can be difficult] finding sponsors,” Kim said. “It was a little confusing and overwhelming for me, but with the two, to three years I’ve been doing it, [fashion] really inspired me to keep going because as more people join, it really makes it worth it.”

According to Melissa Regan, fashion teacher and sponsor of the fashion club, students can also take fashion as an elective. According to Regan, in the fashion course  students are given the chance to explore different fashion styles and trends and really learn what the fashion industry is all about.

“[Fashion] is a nice way for students to express their creativity,” Regan said. “[The class] gives you a different take on a traditional day in a high school setting. We also do a lot of hands-on projects, [which I like to leave] open-ended, and we do a lot of clothing construction projects, which the students really [find entertaining].”

According to Regan, high school was her favorite area to teach, so she loves being a teacher at South and sharing her hobbies with the students.

“[Teaching fashion to high schoolers] includes my interests and hobbies, and also I love to continue research in fashion and keep up with trends and the different styles,” Regan said.

Senior Olivia Landsman says that her passion for fashion has grown from the time she was a little girl taking through the fashion course her junior year. Presently, Landsman’s dream is to pursue a fashion career in the future.

“Fashion is a huge [deal] in the family,” Landsman said. “My aunt lives in New York, and she [works in the Marie Claire business], which is a fashion magazine. So ever since I was little she’s always taken me to fashion shows and different events.”

On the other hand, Kim reveals that fashion may not be a part of her future career, however, keeping up with fashion trends and making her own clothes will definitely remain a substantial part of her life.

“Although I really like [fashion]  as a hobby, I can’t see myself doing it as an actual career, so I don’t think I’ll be pursuing it in the future,” Kim said, “[However] it is going to stay with me, I’m not going to stop designing and sewing, it will just be more of an activity or hobby.”

According to Regan, there are other forms in which students express their sense of fashion other than creating it. Regan explained that she observes students at GBS everyday that seem to showcase a little bit of their personality through their unique clothing choices.

“Definitely walking down the halls, you see all sorts of trendsetters that I might know them by name, but I love to see everyone’s individual style,” Regan said.

Kim expresses that fashion can be a great outlet for students who may be introverted and want to boost their confidence. Kim states as an introvert herself, she began feeling confident as she dressed more appropriately for school.

“Clothing is a great outlet to express your mood or your personality, for those who [tend to be more shy],” Kim said.

Regan said that she loves the fashion that circulates around South as everyone has a different approach to fashion.

“Fashion is important to students because it is a unique and creative outlet,” Regan said. “Not only are there so many careers related to fashion, whether you go the business or designer route. It’s always a way for students to express their creativity.”