24 Mar 2017

ANAIA 2017: Walking in the Right Direction

Ingenious designs and confident models were the highlights of Island School’s student-led annual charity fashion show ANAIA, 18 March 2017.   The shows organizers aimed to challenge stereotypes whilst raising money for Maggie’s Cancer Care Centre. The show was entirely run and organised by Island School students.

Dancers from group “Excuse Me, Your Face is On Fire’ kicked off the show, with students Caylan Socha and Daniel Meerovitsch MCing the gig.

29 student models from schools including Island School, Harrow and Wah Yan College walked the runway wearing high end and high-street brands. In celebration of 50 years of Island School, there were clothing lines inspired by the last five decades, created by student designers.

Avantika Malhotra, a 15 year-old Island School student tells us about her designs. “I started off by researching every era and looked at key prints, fabrics, styles and fashion icons.”

“If something really stood out to me, I tried to incorporate it – for example, in the 90s design, I was inspired by women wearing more masculine pieces so I used army green and a shirt pattern then tailored it to fit the model better, which I thought could really capture the decade.” Her 00s dress was inspired by Valentino, with emphasis on feminine clothes and prints. She was ecstatic to see her final designs on the runway.

This year also uniquely featured seven teachers from Island School. Mr. Chris Lord, Head of Food Tech and Hospitality, at Island School was nervous before the show, saying that he was “mentally preparing the night before”. The teachers were part of the Magic Wardrobe collection featuring wedding gowns and suits – definitely the most popular line of the evening and the most well-received. “This was the best event I’ve been to all year,” says 15-year old Islander Alyssa Harries. “The best part was when the teachers got involved!”

ANAIA 2017’s core values were to celebrate diversity and to challenge stereotypes. Models were chosen to reflect the wide range of body types, ethnicities and ages.  Year 11 model Aayush Batwara said the experience was “incredibly hectic but definitely worth it.” He “witnessed the much needed change (the models) went through from a chaotic Friday rehearsal to Saturday’s smoothly operated show”, thanks to the work of the organizers. He was also “really proud that Island School made the bold move to encourage diversity on the runway,” adding “that it was very successful”.

Alsha Patel, 16 year-old deputy head organizer believes it was a success. “I’m extremely proud of the entire team for their dedication to the cause and the event was spectacular.”

“We definitely had some stressful moments in terms of reaching deadlines, but I couldn’t be happier with the outcome.” She adds: “everyone on the team was supportive and took initiative when necessary.” Hanyan Tsien, 16year-old head of advertising said that seeing the show come alive made her proud. “We all put so much time and effort into (ANAIA) in the past few months, and it was just great to know that we were raising money and awareness for such a good cause.”

By Bakhita Fung, Media Team