Every year, the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising (FIDM) in Los Angeles holds the FIDM Debut which is both a graduation runway show for designers at the top of the class, and a showcase of the school to prospective and new students. More than 10,000 people attend the three days which includes three runway shows and one gala dinner held at Santa Monica’s Barker Hangar.
This year I sat with Raymond Thompson, Senior Lighting Designer of Images by Lighting, at the front of the house while he called the lighting cues. Being the first of the three shows, he had the luxury of being able to make tweaks to the next two from notes he took during the premiere run. Thompson and Images by Lighting have been doing this show for roughly a decade, much of that with producer Jim Watterson, who has since retired. FIDM Debut is a blend of fashion, youth, energy, runway techniques, and even interior design has earned it a place on BizBash’s Top 100 Event in Southern California year after year. Here are some of the looks from this year.