Students from Casa 93, a free fashion school with no diploma requirement, presented their collections at Paris Fashion Week on Tuesday, September 26. Return to a promising fashion show and meet young designers.
From behind a thin white plastic tarpaulin, elusive but undeniably joyful sounds erupt and spread noisily across the vast expanse of Virage Paris. Located under the ring road between the 17th arrondissement and the town of Saint-Ouen, this inclusive party venue hosts the parade of Casa 93’s sixth launch on the occasion of fashion week. Cheerful voices, students’ voices. He joined the show backstage after briefly greeting the audience.
And when the twenty creators reemerge in the corridors, forced by applause, the moment of triumph is not lost. Everyone choruses the name of the school’s founder, Nadine Gonzalez, and gives her all the awards. “Congratulations” audience appeal to them.
This interest from students makes Casa 93 – as it is sometimes pronounced – even more touching “home nine-three” –, actually it is not a school like the others. Casa 93, which has been open to people aged 18-25 without any qualification requirements since 2017, is a completely free school. Located in Montreuil, the organization’s aim is to make the world of fashion more accessible to young talents who may not be able to join another organization due to financial reasons or previous experience.
From shock to serenity
baptized 66°33″ With reference to the Arctic Circle Corresponding to the northern latitude where there are at least twenty-four hours of night and twenty-four hours of daylight every year, The collection of Casa 93’s sixth launch aims to bring hope. “We explore different stages of life and emotions, a cycle from shock to serenity. The polar circle is a symbol of metamorphoses”, 25-year-old student Pacôme explains. “Just because it stays dark for a long time doesn’t mean it won’t heal.” instantly adds another student.
From black clothes to perfect suits, the collection presented by Casa 93 on Tuesday, September 26 is truly a life-saving cycle. While the show opened with dark outfits made of stiff fabrics and rips, the models brought more and more color and flexibility to the raw aisles of Virage Paris. Blue, purple, pink, brown, yellow, then a bright red that merges with black and mixes with white, giving it full space.
Offering a wide range of colors, young designers also provide a real technical demonstration with a wide range of materials. Leather, cotton, cardboard, microfiber and even plastic: students tackle everything and do not hesitate to change the raw nature of fabrics, especially by resorting to the ingenious and non-academic use of heat guns.
All the creations of this parade were made possible thanks to fabric and clothing donations made by various brands and companies throughout the year. “It is thanks to our patrons, partners and donors that Casa 93 manages to remain free.” At the end of the show, he remembers the school’s founder, Nadine Gonzalez. Among them: Louis Vuitton, Courir, Adidas, La Redoute and Mugler. Some brands also send students clothes and accessories that they can later reuse as they wish. For this fashion show, the house of Christian Louboutin sent approximately fifty pairs of shoes to the school. From high heels to loafers, all pairs were designed in accordance with the theme of the collection.
These partnerships, which are indispensable for the life of education, also give Casa 93 a decidedly ecological orientation. In fact, the creations do not require any additional textile production. “There are frequent material deliveries. Sometimes we also bring old clothes of our loved ones, everything is made from material that already exists.” explains Pacôme. “The aim is to create something far away from really big brands or fastfashion applications.” adds Fatima, a student of Casa 93. The demonstration, which was also held in a neutral environment and used a few construction tarpaulins for decoration, was co-financed by the Ecological Transition Agency (Ademe).
Contrary to traditional fashion, another desire of students emerges: greater inclusivity and rejection of norms, especially gender rules. Skirts and trousers, but also open bodies – or not – for everyone, without distinction. During the fashion show, the clothes are presented to the public by non-professional models chosen by students. A broadcast call has been launched on networks for this event. “We wanted people who looked like us, who had our diversity. We also wanted to have older people.” explains one student.
Work in groups
The collection presented by the students at Fashion Week on September 26 is the result of a year of individual learning and collective creation. “Each of us is a link in a chain, and it is this chain that makes up our collection.”He analyzes Pacôme during a visit to the school’s workshops a few days before the parade. Even if each student is the creator of one piece or another, forming part of one of the fifty looks in the collection, the group always comes first.
During the selection of students from 600 candidates for the class of 2023, a self-learning and mutual aid collective was created. “Some of them are very creative, they have a world of their own, but they have almost no knowledge of sewing, while some are already very comfortable with this practice.” Adds the student. “We all learn different things and we learn from each other.” Anita then explains. “I already knew how to sew, I worked more on my creativity and it was a real human adventure.”
If the collection has already been presented, the pursuit does not end there for twenty young people, some of whom have only worked in the fashion world for a year. After one year of training at Casa 93, which provides six months of technical exploration and six months of collection preparation, students are prepared to follow three months of support for professional integration, followed by a two to six-month internship. company.
At the end of the adventure, an average of 35% will attend a new training course, with the majority promoted to self-employment. Fatima wants to continue her education and move towards artistic direction, while Pacôme wants to start as a stylist. “Not all members of the class necessarily know what they want to do, explains the second, But one thing is certain: we have all discovered ourselves to a great extent.”