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Columbia Missourian

FROM READERS: Stephens students honored in international fashion competition

May 3, 2013 | 6:00 a.m. CDT
Stephens student Holly Hmielewski's design for this dress was inspired by photos of the Columbia Mall carousel.

Janese Silvey is a story specialist/strategist for Stephens College.

A Stephens College junior snagged two first-place awards and landed a major $10,000 prize last month at the Fashion Group International of Dallas Career Day Awards.


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Holly Hmielewski took one first place in the cotton category for a dress inspired by photos of the Columbia Mall carousel. She created an engineered print using Illustrator, then had the fabric digitally printed. For added details, she put LED lights on the bodice of the dress and used a tulle petticoat to give it shape.

For the swimwear competition, Hmielewski’s inspiration came from galaxy-themed sunglasses. The first-place two-piece suit also had hand-woven latticework shoulders and hip panels.

The two first-place awards and a personal interview with Brian Bolke, owner of the Forty-Five Ten emporium in Dallas, earned her the top Musselman award.

In addition to the cash, Hmielewski won an opportunity to design a collection under Bolke’s mentorship. She’ll present those items in November at the Dallas Fashion Group International Night of Stars event.

Also in Dallas, Senior Elizabeth Keebler earned a third-place award for casual design and a third place for wool design. Seniors Amanda Glaze and Esli Navarro also had two designs each featured in the Career Day fashion show, which showcased only 200 designs out of more than 550 entered.

This story is part of a section of the Missourian called From Readers, which is dedicated to your voices and your stories. We hope you'll consider sharing. Here's how. Supervising editor Joy Mayer.