The University of Wolverhampton has organised the free events, which will be at Beatties, House of Fraser, next Thursday (JUN26), along with Wolverhampton City Council.
Senior Lecturer Anne Chaisty, of the University’s School of Art & Design, has been producing fashion shows professionally for the last 20 years and has worked on London Fashion Week and Graduate Fashion Week.
She has been working with around 40 students who have taken the basic sari shape and put a modern twist on it, with collections including a latex sari, pleated outfits and metallic colours.
Anne said: “Students took the starting point of looking at traditional Indian culture but fusing it with a stronger urban theme, bringing in the city element and working with a backdrop of Wolverhampton’s skyline.”
Eight Wolverhampton City College Second Year students have also contributed Indian-influenced separates and dresses for the catwalk.
The fashion shows are for Wolverhampton India Summer, which ties in with the overall Wolverhampton India Project aimed at promoting education, trade and culture. The host will be Dicky Dodd, from 107.7 The Wolf Radio, and entertainment will include live bhangra drumming and dancing.
Professional models have been sourced by Sapphire’s Model Agency, run by University of Wolverhampton graduates Neely Reyes and Ian Warren.
But ‘real women’ will also be starring in the shows. Beatties and the University talent-spotted members of the public – aged up to 84 – to feature on the catwalk.
The sponsor for the shows, arranged via the council, is Ashram Housing Association, which has been involved in the Wolverhampton India Project since its inception.
Chief Executive Jas Bains said: “When we look at the richness of our culture, we see the contribution made by diverse communities and we are really looking forward to seeing what tomorrow’s designers bring to the catwalk on June 26.”
Shows will take place at 2.30pm and 4.30pm in-store for all, with an invite-only evening show at 7.30pm.
The shows mark the start of Beatties’ summer sale and will feature styling by Regis hair salon and make-up by Christian Dior and Elizabeth Arden.