Students create fashion line 'good vibes'
Peter Januzelli and Dean Myrto found a common passion for fashion after living next door to each other during their freshman years.
Now, the two juniors are taking a collaborative approach by creating a clothing line to showcase in Threads Fashion Show. For the past four months, Januzelli and Myrto have bounced ideas back and forth, sketched, measured, designed and created.
“Our goal was to use lots of bright colors to spread positive vibes,” Myrto said. “We want it so people who see our clothes or wear our clothes just feel really good about themselves. We decided to use a lot of yellows, oranges and reds — really happy, cheerful colors.”
Januzelli and Myrto incorporated their own style in the collection. They wanted their designs to have a comfortable streetwear aesthetic, but also a high-fashion look to it, Januzelli said. Their collection will consist of five different "looks," including pieces such as bomber jackets and sweatpants.
They chose models whose personal styles matched their designs, Januzelli said.
“We want people to be excited about the clothes,” Januzelli said. “(Our clothes) aren’t just something to put on and walk down the runway in. We really want people to feel a certain energy and feel really good about what they are wearing.”
This will be Januzelli’s second year submitting a collection to Threads. Originally from Greenville, he said he originally came to CMU for its Entrepreneurship program. After deciding he needed to focus on a specific area, he became interested in the Fashion Merchandising and Design program and signed his minor in fashion last spring. This led to his decision to submit a collection to the show, despite not having any prior sewing or design courses.
It was CMU alumnus Zach Stoner who taught Januzelli to sew. Stoner, A Fashion Merchandising and Design student at the time, met Januzelli at a model workshop and agreed to mentor him.
“When we first started talking, Peter seemed genuinely interested in sewing and the design process,” Stoner said. “He didn’t have any sewing experience at the time but wanted some before he even took the classes. I thought that was really cool — his interest really intrigued me, along with his drive.”
Since then, Januzelli has been networking to try to get his name out in the fashion industry. He spent the past summer in Chicago working at Louis Vuitton and plans to return this summer.
Januzelli said the fashion community is "very tightly knit," and he is trying to become a part of it.
“My goal is to have my own (clothing) line one day,” Januzelli said. “I’m excited to show off my work. Around 2,000 people will see it — that’s way more (people) than posting on social media or just handing it to someone. This is a show (where) all the attention is on the runway and the work.”
This will be Myrto’s first time submitting a collection to Threads. Like Januzelli, Myrto hadn't considered pursuing a career in fashion.
The West Bloomfield native originally came to CMU as an engineering major, but quickly realized it wasn’t a pathway he was interested in.
Myrto switched his major to entrepreneurship halfway through his sophomore year and chose to pursue a minor in Fashion Merchandising and Design. He said watching his grandmother sew and make clothes while growing up developed his love for fashion.
“I wanted to make sure I was doing something I actually enjoy,” Myrto said. “Because if I don’t enjoy something, I’m not going to put 100% effort into it. Now that I am doing fashion, I really enjoy it. It allows me to be creative and I’ve always loved that.”
He said that he became interested in Threads because he loves designing clothes, and showcasing his work to a large number of people is a motivator to create high-end clothes.
“I’m looking forward to presenting the clothes and seeing people’s reactions to our work,” Myrto said. “(Threads) is a really great opportunity to show everyone what we are capable of.”