Fashion as a Legitimate K–12 Academic Discipline?

Julie Wheat


When I was in high school, the only opportunity to learn about clothing and celebrate the making of it was through 4-H, which is an outside non-profit organization. Here are photos of me modeling clothing that I designed, cut, and sewed at the age of 11 and 12 for #tbt: 



Fashion as an academic discipline was not a widespread idea in the late 1980s–1990s. If you were going to participate in the fashion industry, you needed to go to New York, Paris, Milan, Pratt, Parsons, FIT, or any combination of the above. It is no longer the late 1990s. Popular culture offers us Project Runway, Fashion Star, and branded clothing and perfume lines by our favorite infamous TV personalities—such as J. LO, Brittney Spears, Taylor Swift, and Justin Timberlake—in addition to the long-lasting fashion retail establishments and high-level designers. It's currently a fashion brand free-for-all!


This Saturday evening, November 22, at 7:30 p.m. at the Principle Gallery at 125 Meeting Street, the Wando High School and School of the Arts fashion program students will be assisting me with the presentation of the Fall/Winter 2014 collection that I designed, created, and arrived to present in 15 days to show as a featured designer closing night at Nashville Fashion Week earlier this year. The past four years, I have been a professor in the fashion retail management department at the Art Institute of Charleston. I believe that there is no better way to grow an industry than to involve young people in an exciting, realistic, and tangible experience with it. I am thrilled to collaborate with the young fashionistas of our local community who are enrolled in fashion-related majors in our local public school system. Students from fashion programs at both schools will assist with operations that evening—setting up the event, seating guests, organizing raffle items, styling and dressing models. Event proceeds will benefit new local fashion design programs at Wando High School and School of the Arts.

Please join us for an evening of STYLE!

General Admission Tickets are $15 in advance/$20 at the door. Standing room only.
VIP Tickets are $25 in advance/$30 at the door. Giftbag and premier seating is included in the VIP ticket price.
Beverages and an evening of style are included for all guests.

There are only 100 tickets available, and this event is expected to sell out.
Tickets can be purchased at:
The Cavortress retail location: 644-I Longpoint Road, Mount Pleasant, SC 29464 (Belle Hall Shopping Center) between the hours of 11–6, Monday-Saturday
By phone at the retail location:  843.388.4142

The following items are up for auction/raffle:
Beauty product/service package from the Downtown Urban Nirvana (who is also providing hair and makeup for the event)
2 Tickets to Charleston Fashion Week on Friday 
2 Tickets to the Bay Street Biergarten New Years Eve Party
2 Tickets to the Alley New Years Eve Party
2 Tickets to the Rose Ball on New Years Eve at Hagood Stadium
2 Tickets to the Charleston Museum Fashion Flashback event
A Brackish bow tie
Makeover Makeup Party from Pink Dot Beauty Bar for 6
E-design interior makeover for one room by SPOT STYLES
Weekend Stay from Elephant Insight rental properties
Jewelry Designs from both Harrison + Pike and Youngblood Originals
Event attendance at one of Lowcountry Local First's esteemed events
Gift basket from Tyler Candles
A number of food and beverage packages from local restaurants, including Red Drum, Brown Dog Deli, Eli’s Table, Rarebit, Fratello’s Trattoria, and Monza.
A special thanks to our additional sponsors:
Principle Gallery
TOUT Talent
Front Row Charleston
The Art Institute of Charleston
OnTheGo Charleston
Brown Dog Deli
Coastal Cupboard
Bottles Mount Pleasant
Produce Candles
Technical Event Company
The Becket Agency
Charleston After Dark
Cougar Moving Company
Meg Workman
Nomad Travelgear
105.5 the Bridge
Daveron Networking Services