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Fashion studio connects youth to industry

Tue, 31 Mar 2009 22:30:00
Article by:
Traci Peace and Duran Guion, Men’s fashion director for Macy’s West
In 2007, Visions of La Moda Fashion Studio for Youth (Visions of La Moda) introduced student participants to the fashion department at San Francisco State University.

A few months later the SFSU fashion department engaged the small non-profit organization in a community partnership and invited students to be part of their annual fashion show. Another landmark opportunity was presented in 2008, when Visions of La Moda students were invited by Vogue Magazine to engage in a private tour and to participate as interns back stage in their Spring 2009 New York Collections – Fashion Week.  

Traci Peace, a fourth generation San Franciscan and Bayview resident, is founder and executive director of Visions of La Moda Fashion Studio for Youth. Peace’s love affair with fashion started when she was a little girl. The impeccably dressed men and women she saw at church each Sunday influenced her, but it was her grandmother who introduced her to European-designed clothing and her great-grandfather (a minister and pastor) who dressed daily in custom tailored suits and shirts that catapulted her love of high fashion into action. She also credits former CNN Style Editor Elsa Klench and current Vogue’s Editor-at-Large Andre Leon Talley for maintaining her passion and commitment to engaging youth and cultivating new talent in the industry.  

Peace holds a Bachelor’s degree in Child Psychology from San Francisco State University and has studied Italian for the fashion industry at Linguadue Scoula di Italiano in Milan, Italy, as well as continued study at Istituto Italiano di Cultura in San Francisco. She is a fashion stylist and has styled and consulted with Bay Area media personalities; Carlstrom Productions-San Francisco, New York, Los Angeles; given fashion reports for WILD 94.9 morning radio show “The Dog House;” interviewed former San Francisco Mayor Willie Brown on “Men and High Fashion;” and has worked with Paramount/Dreamworks Pictures for the Oscar winning film “Dreamgirls.”  

Peace has been a theatrical dresser for the Tony award winning Broadway shows “Jesus Christ Superstar” and “Chicago.” She has worked with M3 Productions for one of most prestigious Academy Award events, Jeffrey Katzenberg’s 2008 “The Night Before” Party,” and the “In Style Magazine” 2008 Oscar Party. Peace has organized and arranged fashion field trips for young fashion enthusiasts to tour renowned designer show rooms in New York City (Marc Jacobs, Donna Karan and Tracy Reese).   

Youth participants in Visions of La Moda Fashion Studio for Youth (Visions of La Moda) recently displayed their talents at FJ Cava’s Web Spot during their one year anniversary celebration in March. The small non-profit organization offers youth exposure to the fashion industry and design through a highly dedicated group of student participants and volunteer staff.  

Visions of La Moda instructors include:  Rose Villanueva, B.A. Fashion Design (Fashion Illustration/Visual Merchandising Instructor - Chief Instructor); Tenneh Wilkins, B.A. Fashion Design (Fashion Design Instructor); Mercedes Kerrison, BFA Fabric Styling, (Fashion Merchandising Instructor); Matthew Paul Robinson (Fashion Design Instructor), currently completing his Bachelors of Science degree in Apparel Design at San Francisco State University; Margaret-Grace Stewart (Visual Merchandising/ Fashion Design Instructor); Artemio Fanelli (Fashion Design/Italian Language Guest Instructor), received his undergraduate degree in Fashion and Costume Design from the Academy of Costume and Fashion in Rome and his Master’s degree in Styling and Theatrical Costume Design from the European Institute of Design in Rome.

The free hands-on program for youth is offered to youth ages 16 to 22. Classes are held in the lower level multi-purpose room at Faith Temple Church, located at 1758 Oakdale Ave. To learn more, visit www.visionsoflamoda.org.

 
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