The power of WE! 41 fashion design graduates selected by CFDA+ 2017 (part 1)

Avatar photo

41 fashion designers coming from the best fashion schools all over the world presented their graduate collections at CFDA+ 2017, emerging with a unique voice that speak about a sustainable future for fashion.

Why every aspiring fashion designer should know CFDA?
This four letters are the acronym of “Council of Fashion Designers of America”, that means total support for young talents, emerging designers and fashion brands in Usa and worldwide. This not-for-profits association was founded in 1962 by the visionary Eleanor Lambert, who first understood the potentiality of American fashion designers, bringing them out of their ateliers and putting under the spotlight of international fashion.

Eleanor Lambert
Currently this association unifies more than 500 fashion and accessories designers and wants to give even more visibility and professional support to young designers through many prizes, like the famous CFDA Fashion Awards, initiatives, fashion incubators, showcases and funds.

In 2013 was launched the CFDA+ platform, which gives great visibility to graduating designers all over the world. Every year, through an attentive selection process with portfolio reviews and interviews to the candidates, are choosen the most talented students coming from the best and innovative fashion schools in 5 continents. They are connected to all association’s members and receive a one-years profile-based showcase on the CFDA official website in addition to “Eyes on Talents“, the Paris based platform by Floriane De Saint Pierre.

CFDA+ design graduates platform
The theme of CFDA+ 2017 is suggestive. “The power of We” or “We are all connected” is the topic emerged from the interviews with the young students, who expressed their unique vision about the future of fashion seen as sustainability, cultural meltin’pot, innovation of materials and design process, diversity and hope.

Let’s start the journey that will bring us to know all the brilliant graduating fashion designers from each fashion school selected for CFDA+ 2017 edition.


From the prestigious school Academy of Art University in San Francisco, founded in 1929 and always on the vanguard about innovatin and creativity with its art and fashion courses, were selected 7 students:

  • AASTHA SHAH (BA Hons Fashion Design Womenswear) and PEGGY KUO (BFA Textile Design), a design duo, presented a graduate collection focused on textile prints and colorful embroideries and applications with 3d effects
  • CARLY DEAN (MFA Textile Design) creates contemporary garments with multi-layers of fabrics using burnout technique
  • CHRISTINA MIYAGI (BFA Textile Design) believes on up-cycling techniques to create new fabrics and interisting surfaces
  • ERIKA TOMPKINS (BFA Fashion Design Womenswear) revisits simple and classic clothes with surrueal details and technological techniques
  • FANG KATY LIU (MFA Textile Design) explores colors and surfaces with unusual materials and an artistic approach
  • RYAN ZHEN YU (MFA Fashion Design Womenswear) has a reaally futuristic vision focused on contrasts of dark and light, sharp and clean surfaces.

CFDA+ 2017 Aasha Shah & Peggy Kuo  graduate collection
CFDA+ 2017 Carly Dean  graduate collection
CFDA+ 2017 Christina Miyagi graduate collection
CFDA+ 2017 Erika Tompkins graduate collection
CFDA+ 2017 Fang Katy Liu graduate collection
CFDA+ 2017 Ryan Zhen Yu graduate collection


From Columbia College Chicago and its BFA Fashion Design course, thought to improve the aesthetic vision of each student through innovation and creative exploration, is coming MADELINE MOORE, graduated with honors. She presented a graduate collection based on clothes that exceed the normal boundaries of our bodies to built oversize shapes that had life of their own.

CFDA+ 2017 Madeline Moore graduate collection


The ancient Drexel University in Philadelphia, founded in the far 1891 and with a renowned fashion design master course (in the world’s top 20), presented to CFDA+ two of its best students:

  • ANNA SAJESKI (BS Fashion Design) is specialized in knitwear and prints, designed her graduate collection with three-dimensional structures to emulate the coral textures and the underwater ecosystem beauty.
  • LELA THOMPSON (BS Fashion Design) explores new ways to reuse existing materials mixed to laser cutting, 3d printing and traditional knitting machine.

CFDA+ 2017 Anna Sajeski graduate collection
CFDA+ 2017 Lela Thompson graduate collection

See Also


FIT, the famous Fashion Institute of Technology in New York, is internationally recognized as one of the most important school for fashion design, which basing its fame on innovation and great attention to the student’s needs. ALYSSA WARDROP (BFA Fashion Design Womenswear) is a promising designer specialized in artisanal techniques. Her graduate collection “Body as a canvas” is inspired by 1960s italian movies and presents geometrical silhouettes transformed into canvas with painting effects, top-stitching and layered fabrics.

CFDA+ 2017 Alyssa Wardrop graduate collection


Ranked as one of the best fashion school in the world, Polimoda was founded in 1986 in Florence by Shirley Goodman and Emilio Pucci as new center for the excellence of fashion education focused on concrete connection with industries and design studios. From this school were selected three students:

ILARIA MEUCCI  (BFA Footwear and Accessories Design), passionate about Thierry Mugler style, creates futuristic accessories using 3D and creative techniques mixed with a more artisanal approach.
SHANIA MATTHEWS (BFA Fashion Design Womenswear and Knitwear) loves colors and creates soft silhouettes draping and works mixing textures and fabrics with handcrafted embroideries.
PIERPAOLO GRASSO (BFA Fashion Design Menswear) is surprising for his experimentational approach to shapes and fashion collection, which becomes an extravagant and colorful tale.

CFDA+ 2017 Ilaria Meucci graduate collection
CFDA+ 2017 Shania Matthews graduate collection
CFDA+ 2017 Pierpaolo Grasso graduate collection


Marist College, founded in 1929 and located in the beautiful Hudson River Valley near New York, is an interesting reality in fashion school panorama, with a business-building approach to fashion design that leaves however great space to experimentation and creativity. From this school is coming EMMA COLLINS (BFA Fashion Design Menswear), whose graduate collection is a modern rethinking of men’s classic clothes in a more street wear style, with unusual details and new proportions.

CFDA+ 2017 Emma Collins graduate collection

Today we’ve seen the young and talented students of the first 6 fashion schools. I’ll wait you really soon for the next episode of this journey to discover CFDA+ 2017 graduating designers selection.

Copyright © 2020 THE FASHION PROPELLANT. Designed & Developed by Seà design 

All Rights Reserved. - Privacy policy - Cookie policy

Scroll To Top