I had my own personal Project Runway moment last night at Louis Vuitton and Parsons’ Reconstruction 2.0. The French luxury brand and the New York school partnered up for the second year in a row for a design contest. Six teams of four students each created travel blankets-cum-art pieces from press samples from Vuitton’s men’s and women’s Spring and Fall 2010 collections, and I was tasked with determining which was the best in terms of originality, creativity, and technical ability. No easy job, so thank goodness it wasn’t all up to me. Vuitton’s Geoffroy van Raemdonck and Patricia Field of Sex and the City and The Devil Wears Prada fame were the other judges. The students spent an entire day working on their projects, and with a free trip to Paris as the prize for the winning foursome, you can bet they put their all into it. Geoffroy, Patricia, and I each had favorites, but the Time Travel team of Emily Hudson, Willie Norris, Janelle Abbott, and Zach Clark came out on top. The reverse-appliqué techniques they used in their black, red, and blue blanket reminded me of what Natalie Chanin and her Alabama quilters do for Project Alabama. Speaking of designers, Norris is particularly impressed with the work of a certain Parisian. “I hope we run into Alaïa when we get there,” he told me.
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