Take a Holiday Road Trip

In the dead of winter, when all is cold and gray, wouldn’t it be nice to be whisked away to a warm and inviting land of green palm trees, pink flamingos and pink Cadillacs, silver Airstreams, and festive gnomes? Better yet, wouldn’t it be great to shop in this land of retro fun? Now you can. Come to the Holiday Road Trip Pop-Up Shop November 16-20 in the Pomerantz lobby, where designer clothing (including resort wear) for men and women will be on sale, along with shoes, handbags, swimsuits, and more from designers such as Chanel, Shoshanna, Manolo Blahnik, Marc Jacobs, Tory Burch, Sonia Rykiel, Prada, Stuart Weitzman, Burberry, and YSL. All proceeds benefit the Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center.

Now in its third year, every aspect of the FIT holiday pop-up shop is entirely conceived, designed, and created by students in the Visual Presentation and Exhibition Design (VPED) program at FIT—from store design and decor to displays and hangtags. This year’s theme was the brainchild of Aubrie Kish and Corinne Spano, both second-year, third-semester VPED students. “I was thinking of a tropical pop-up shop, and Corinne was thinking of a trailer park theme,” Kish said. “But we wanted to make it family-oriented, so we came up with the road trip concept.”

Holiday Road Trip was just one of many concepts floated at the beginning of the process. Each student was assigned to come up with ideas, which then were whittled down and/or combined with one another until there were six groups of four students each representing six concepts. These were presented to a group from The Society of Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, which selected Holiday Road Trip. Once the concept was adopted, the class divided into specific teams charged with areas of responsibility, including graphic identity, fixtures and floor plan, entranceway, and window and back wall graphics. Each section of the store is designed to be not just a shopping experience, but a fun and nostalgic experience. There will even be an old-timey postcard stand from which “Greetings from FIT” postcards will be sold.

Katia Michalopoulos, who also helped develop the concept, added that this year the students are trying to draw a stronger connection to the partnership between FIT and Memorial Sloan Kettering. For the first time, visitors will be given an opportunity to donate to MSK separately from making a purchase through a donation box that will be installed on the Airstream at the entrance of the store. Hangtags will read, “Thank you for hitchin’ a ride and supporting cancer research.”

The last two years’ pop-up shops raised a total of $60,000.

“I think this year’s concept is incredibly original, and I think it will resonate because so many of us get on the road for the holidays. It’s something we all have in common,” said Anne Kong, associate professor, VPED. “Hopefully it will make people think about giving.”



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