No Longer on the Fringe

Sophia McCrimmon

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The magazine features spreads exploring various fashion styles

The magazine features spreads exploring various fashion styles

Last week, MLWGS students were granted the opportunity to improve their style IQ with the distribution of the first edition of the Fringe, a student run-publication exploring aspects of fashion on a local and global scale. Entirely composed of contributions by Maggie Walker students, its contents include everything from overviews of winter fashion trends to interviews with local businesses. The successful first edition bodes well for the continued popularity of the magazine, which serves as a unique addition to the student-produced publication scene at MLWGS.

Editor-in-Chief Ellie Kim (’17) first felt an impulse to start the magazine when she found herself without many opportunities to explore her passion for fashion journalism. “At Maggie Walker there isn’t really an outlet for fashion of culture, so for me this project was about finding something I could work on passionately at school,” said Kim.

In the early stages of creative development, Kim and her staff drew inspiration from college fashion publications like ROCKET at the College of William & Mary, a biannual art and design magazine founded in 2011.

To make a really good product you need a lot of different people who are all very passionate about different things.”

— Ellie Kim

In the compilation of work for the magazine, Kim and her creative directors Dharaa Rathi (’17) and Kiersen Mather (’17) yielded significant creative control to anyone who wished to contribute. “We opened it up to really anyone,” Kim said. “They didn’t have to be passionate about fashion or dress up every day, that’s not really what it’s about.” As the project gained momentum, contributors came to the creative directors with article ideas and the publication developed from there. “From an editorial standpoint, it wasn’t about telling people what to do, but more about people coming to us with something to do,” Kim said.

Over the course of the process, Kim learned that the key to a successful publication is being able to combine and strengthen the enthusiasm of many participants. “The biggest thing I learned from this is that to make a really good product you need a lot of different people who are all very passionate about different things.” She echoed this sentiment in her letter from the editor at the beginning of the magazine, writing that “In order to create an articulated product, everyone involved did not need to have an immediate love for fashion, but rather an immediate love for what each person brought to the table.” Through her collaboration with an enthusiastic staff, Kim noticed the way that shared passion can transcend high school drama as students work on something larger than themselves. “It’s been so interesting getting to know people better from different grades who really share a similar passion,” said Kim. “A lot of times people overlook the fact that there are people around you who are interested in similar things and that you might share a common goal with.”

Though they accepted all different kinds of articles, Kim, Rathi, and Mather did attempt to focus on some specific areas. “We figured out how many pages we wanted to do and then we worked on what types of articles we wanted to use to fill those,” Kim said. The team decided to include sections on global fashion, runway trends, a photo editorial, and interviews with local figures in the industry, a model which Kim expects to continue in later issues. Next year, she hopes to publish an edition of the magazine each semester.

In Kim’s view, a publication of this sort can easily thrive at Maggie Walker – a fairly inclusive community when it comes to fashion. “One of the reasons why I like Maggie Walker so much is that nobody judges you for what you wear, and you don’t really have to look a certain way or wear certain clothes to fit in,” said Kim. “It’s so beautiful to me because so many kids our age are forced to conform to this ideal. It’s so amazing that you can wear whatever you want and be happy.”

 

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