On Friday, April 21, KO students, faculty, family, and friends gathered in Roberts Theater to see thread’s Fashion Show, “a common thread,” Benefitting The Village for Families & Children.
thread is KO’s student-run fashion magazine, founded and created by junior Ava Cashman in the spring of 2021. This year, thread decided to support The Village for Families & Children by arranging a fashion show that raised money for this organization. The Village provides resources and opportunities to families in the Greater Hartford area. Through this event, thread raised a total of $3,254.09 to donate to The Village.
The event started off at 6:30 p.m. with a social hour and silent auction. This provided attendees with an opportunity to mingle, have something to eat, and bid on items sponsored by several West Hartford businesses. These included Daswani Clothiers, Kimberly Boutique, Restaurant Bricco, Playa Bowls West Hartford, Gypset Salon, Doro Restaurant Group, Success Prep Partners, Black Bamboo, Melanie da Costa, and Second Chance Shop West Hartford.
These partnerships added to and showcased the strong relationship between local businesses and the KO community. “All of the brands I reached out to were beloved by the KO community,” Ava said. “It not only provided more opportunities for us to raise funds for The Village, but it also helped provide the brands with more local exposure, and it gave our attendees the opportunity to bid on prizes that excited them.” The success was evident, with the silent auction alone raising nearly $1,000. Following the conclusion of the social hour, the highly anticipated fashion show began.
Ava opened the show by sharing the significance of the event’s name – “a common thread” – and explaining The Village for Families & Children’s mission. The name was especially fitting for thread’s fashion show. The club’s mission is to promote individuality and highlight the style and creativity of the KO community through fashion. The title “a common thread” reflects this goal, as everyone walking the runway was displaying their own style and coming together through fashion. Additionally, all of the models were walking for the common good of supporting The Village for Families & Children.
Following Ava’s opening remarks, senior Mac Louis was first to walk the runway. Mac wore a classic, preppy New England outfit with khaki pants, complemented by a navy polo shirt and blue sunglasses. Mac’s well-coordinated personal style is inspired by his Papou (his grandfather).
Following Mac’s walk, the runway continued to showcase the other models, including sophomore Joella Asapokhai and sophomore Kayla Buttaro. Joella’s personal style was a reflection of her personality, evident in the pairing of her flare pants with a vividly colored flowered top and a flash pink coat. Her outfit was colorful and cute, mirroring her lively and outgoing nature.
Kayla’s outfit was also a colorful one, as she wore a pink flowered dress. Picking out which outfit to wear for the show was a highlight for Kayla. “It was fun to see my outfit along with everyone else’s on the runway, as it really shows how everyone expresses themselves differently,” Kayla said. “It shows our diversity in our style.”
Joella also enjoyed seeing the other people walking the runway; however, her favorite part was the sense of community the show brought. “A lot of different people decided to walk in the show, and we all did our part in showing up to rehearsal and encouraging people to be confident on the runway,” Joella said. “We all had fun while doing something for a good cause.”
In addition to Mac, Joella, and Kayla, many other looks were represented in the show. From timeless elegance embodied by freshman Alexandra Lenarchyk who wore the classy black dress to styles inspired by the 70s, the runway showcased a range of fashion statements. The runway also featured a variety of people, from KO students to history teacher Peter Jones to English teacher David Hild and his beloved golden retriever Cali to English teacher Bill Martino’s children, Lizzie, Will, Mac, and Frankie.
The event flawlessly showcased the unique fashion choices and emphasized everyone’s individual style in the community. Simultaneously, the show created an exciting community event while raising money and awareness for The Village. With great success, the show accomplished these objectives by effectively bringing the community together.
thread’s faculty advisor and English Department Chair Cathy Schieffelin was particularly impressed with the show. “Ava did a really amazing job with organizing this fashion show,” Ms. Schieffelin said. “A fashion show can be tough because it can get kind of repetitive. It’s hard making it long enough that it’s still a fun event, but also not making it so long that it gets boring. She really nailed the balance between these two sides and created something that was great for the community.”
Those in the audience were equally impressed. “The show actually exceeded my expectations,” sophomore Francesca Lamattina said. “With the lights, sound, and the runway, everything came together really well and looked very professional. My favorite was seeing all my friends show off their unique styles on stage. It took a lot of courage to do that, and I think everyone who participated did a great job.”
While “a common thread” was organized by Ava, she was helped by Ms. Schieffelin, SGA advisor Carolyn McKee, Director of Technical Theater Michael Bane, senior Alyssa Temkin, and many others, and the event proved to be a remarkable success. It not only showcased the unique fashion choices and individual styles within the KO community, but also served as a platform for fostering connections and raising money for The Village for Families & Children. It was truly an impressive and wonderful event.