a woman models a dress from the exhibit

History Center, Mesa College partner for vintage fashion exhibit

March 27, 2018 | San Diego Community College District

Fashion-forward trends come alive this spring by looking back on 90 years of San Diego fashion. On March 3, 2018, the History Center & Mesa College School of Fashion and Design opened the exhibition Fashion Redux: 90 Years of Fashion at the History Center in Balboa Park. 

The exhibition—free with Give Forward* admission—features historical garments from the History Center’s extensive textile collection paired with garments inspired by history and created by Mesa College fashion students.  The exhibition also features a live fashion show in late April 2018.

“This is going to be a really fun and informative exhibition,” mentioned Susan Lezear, fashion professor at Mesa College. “Our students are excited to have this kind of exposure and are confident the visitors who see this exhibition will learn something about the fabulous fashion trends that have characterized various eras in San Diego’s past. They will also get an intimate, up-close experience by hearing the stories of the students’ journey from concept to completion.”

The exhibition will include an interactive learning space giving visitors the chance to become familiar with fashion techniques and fabrication. A live fashion demonstration station will be activated by San Diego Mesa College students who will provide a glimpse inside their creative process.

Programming surrounds the exhibition as well, with the premiere event, the Fashion Redux Grand Reveal, taking place on April 26, 2018 from 6pm-8:30pm. The evening features a chic reception, fashion show of student garments set inside the spacious exhibition, a lecture by fashion expert, Susan Lazear, followed by the announcement of the live voting for the coveted People’s Choice Award.

“The History Center’s costume collection includes garments from the late 18th century to the present,” said History Center curator Kaytie Johnson. “Many of the pieces in the collection are singular in that they can be directly attributed to San Diegans, and show lifestyles in San Diego over time.”

How to go: 

- The exhibition runs March 3 - June 29, 2018 at the San Diego History Center in Balboa Park. The Fashion Show is from 6 to 8 p.m. April 26.


About the San Diego History Center

The San Diego History Center, a Smithsonian Affiliate, has been preserving our region’s history and making it available to the public since 1928. It operates its flagship museum in the heart of Balboa Park as well as the Junípero Serra Museum in historic Presidio Park and tells the diverse stories from our region’s past. The History Center is the steward of our heritage and the principal resource for San Diego history. No other institution is solely devoted to preserving San Diego’s collective history and enhancing community identity.

*Give Forward is the History Center's admission program. Visitors are invited into the museum free of charge; and on their way out, asked them to value their experience in an optional donation form to support the museum’s open-access ideology that no one should feel restricted from accessing their own history. A voluntary donation helps keep that going.

About the Mesa College Fashion Program

The Fashion Program at San Diego Mesa College is the most comprehensive program in the region, offering the best value education over other colleges. Students at Mesa receive a comprehensive education which includes not only design, but fashion merchandising, computer technology, illustration, tailoring, visual merchandising and fashion retail/sales. Mesa students are exposed to all facets of the fashion industry and work closely with the business entrepreneur program to maximize their opportunities upon graduation.

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