By Krista DeJulio and Samantha Plumley – Features Editor & 1851 Staff
Fashion professor Carol Emanuelson’s Accessories Design class, FASD330, recently donated eight hats the class designed and constructed to the Asperger/Autism Network, AANE, to be auctioned off.
“At first they weren’t really sure if they wanted to participate,” said Emanuelson.
Initially apprehensive, the students realized donating their hats would be a way to market themselves. The eight students in the class chose to participate in the auction by taking a vote and majority ruled to donate the hats. Lynn Blake, the head of the Fashion Department, was contacted by AANE in hopes the class would make handbags, but the curriculum had handbag designs for a later unit in the semester and they settled on hats for donations.
The annual fundraising event in the spring will be accompanied by the launch of AANE’s first auction. The auction will stay live from December 4 through the 14. Proceeds will go to different donation funds and general operating expenses of the organization. Sheri Singer, the Campaign and Special Events Manager at AANE, expects the auction will raise “at least $2,000 if the items sell for face value,” but is anticipating the auction will close at a higher margin.
After sketching, it took three to four weeks for the students to produce the hats. Emanuelson described the hats as “inspired by vintage design,” showing motifs from various eras, especially the 1920s. Many of the hats feature netted veils and feathers. Since the hats are vintage inspired they are considered “novelty.”
“It was hard to give it away after all the time and money I spent on it,” said junior Jessica Capobianco on the hat designs.
Capobianco and her classmates knew it was worthwhile because it was going to such a good cause. The students paid for their own supplies and also learned about philanthropy as part of the class. Emanuelson said the best part of the entire project was the students “giving their time and money for a greater good, for humanity.”