Art Institute of Pittsburgh instructor Megan Carleton gave students in her fashion retail merchandising course a chance for extra credit -- but it wasn't the typical writing assignment or complete-at-home project.
Students were invited to produce a fashion show and a window display to help Macy's, Downtown, promote its new menswear line Bar III, which targets millennials with trendy, West Coast-style apparel.
"We have a history with them," said Billie Williams, a retail development manager in the men's department at Macy's. "Fifteen years ago, the Art Institute did some fabulous windows for us for Light Up Night."
Last fall at Macy's, Art Institute students created window displays featuring student designs for Pittsburgh Fashion Week and participated in an event with NBC "Fashion Star" season one winner Kara Laricks.
Students and faculty celebrated the latest collaboration Friday with a window unveiling and a fashion show featuring Bar III, INC and American Rag clothes for men. Students were in charge of casting models, selecting apparel, accessorizing and coordinating a run-through of the show.
"We kind of just sat back and let them take free rein," Ms. Williams said.
For students, it was a chance to get a taste of the real world of fashion merchandising.
"It was enjoyable -- a little hectic -- but enjoyable," said junior fashion retail management student Gary Fenchak, who was a commentator for the show. "It's always fun putting on a production like this. We get great experience in learning how to do this, being as this is a big part of the fashion retail management degree."
Macy's finds partnering with up-and-coming fashion professionals important to its growth, as well.
"We also are looking for our future managers, so it's a little bit of exposure for them," Ms. Williams said. "We're going to remember those students who did a spectacular job for us."
More from the Pittsburgh fashion and beauty front ...
Mother-of-the-bride trunk show at Lintons: Help mom get the perfect gown for her daughter's big day at a trunk show at Lintons at the Waterfront. Browse designs from Daymor, Damianou, Ideas by Barbara, Scaravelli, Sia Sia and V.M. by Mori Lee. Petite and plus sizes are available in select styles. Those who place an order during the event will receive a 10 percent discount.
It's 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Thursday through Saturday and noon to 6 p.m. Sunday. Information: 412-461-2600 or www.lintonswaterfront.com.
PINK party at United Colors of Benetton: Get psyched for spring with a series of color-centric events at 5513 Walnut St., Shadyside. From 6 to 8 p.m. Thursday, stop by for pink refreshments, as well as $25 off purchases of at least $200. United Colors of Benetton's spring inventory is a celebration of color and culture, with global-inspired prints and skinny jeans, tops, belts and sheath dresses in just about every Crayola hue.
Shoppers also will be invited to share their favorite Benetton colors on Instagram with a photo of themselves wearing them. Include the hashtags #Benetton and #BeYourSelfie for a chance to win a $300 shopping spree. Information: www.benetton.com.
Trunk shows for her at Larrimor's: Infuse your wardrobe with feminine separates, luxe knitwear, leathers and other chic-yet-modern designs with fashions from Lafayette 148 New York. Check out the line Thursday, Friday, Monday and next Tuesday at One PNC Plaza, Downtown, and Saturday and Sunday at the Galleria in Mt. Lebanon. Top off looks with ready-to-wear and custom hats by Gina Mazzotta Millinery, featured Thursday and Friday at One PNC Plaza.
Information: www.larrimors.com or 412-471-5727 (Downtown) or 412-344-5727 (Galleria).
Handbags sought for charity event: Donations of handbags are wanted for the fourth annual Bags, Bellinis & Brunch April 14 at the Herberman Conference Center, UPMC Shadyside. Guests can purchase the new or gently used bags at the event, which supports the Satchels of Caring Foundation. The group provides satchels filled with goodies to cancer patients.
To make a donation, call 412-841-1289. Handbags are needed by April 8. To learn more about the event, visit www.satchelsofcaring.org.
Also in the news ...
Macy's debuts new lines: The department store chain is rolling out two more lines targeting young adult fashionistas, the Marilyn Monroe collection and Teen Vogue line. The former reimagines styles worn by the 20th-century film star for today's woman, with retro-styled apparel, such as red checkered halter dresses, a cherry-patterned trench and other figure-flattering silhouettes. It retails for $29 to $89 at www.macys.com and in 150 stores, including at Monroeville and Ross Park malls.
Teen Vogue editors worked with Macy's for its namesake collection. The magazine-worthy looks retail well below $100. Locally, find them at South Hills Village and The Mall at Robinson.
New role for Vogue editor Anna Wintour: She might have yet to snag an ambassadorship with the Obama administration, but Anna Wintour has plenty to keep her busy, thanks to her additional role as Conde Nast artistic director. According to The New York Times, she will take on some of the tasks once handled by S.I. Newhouse Jr., who has controlled the editorial management of the publishing house for more than three decades. The promotion squelches for now speculations that Ms. Wintour, 63, might leave or retire soon.
For more from PG fashion writer Sara Bauknecht, check out the Post-Gazette's new Stylebook blog at www.post-gazette.com/stylebook. To have a fashion or style event considered for Stylebook, send listing to email@example.com. First Published March 19, 2013 4:00 AM