Nancy Richardson Design Center

Design and Merchandising Newsletter
Spring 2022 Recap

The Design and Merchandising newsletter publishes twice per year, in January and June.

From the Department Head - Karen Hyllegard

Outdoor portrait of Karen HyllegardDear Alumni and Friends,

Spring 2022 was a busy and productive semester in the Department of Design and Merchandising, during which we successfully hired a business coordinator and four tenure-track faculty. Anthony Vecchiarelli (’16) joined DM in the role of business coordinator. Anthony brings valuable experience in human resource and financial management to the position. Three of our new faculty will join the department in August. Dr. Laura Cole, who has a Ph.D. in architecture (design studies) and natural resources and environment (environmental psychology) from the University of Michigan, will join the Interior Architecture and Design program as an assistant professor. Dr. Paula Alaszkiewicz has a Ph.D. in art history from Concordia University in Montreal, Canada, and she will be joining us in the role of assistant professor and curator of the Avenir Museum. Lida Aflatoony is a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Textile and Apparel Management at the University of Missouri, and she will assume the role of assistant professor in product development. Kayna Hobbs-Murphy is a Ph.D. candidate in the Occupational Ergonomics and Safety program at Colorado State University, and she will officially join us in January 2023 as an assistant professor in apparel design and production.

In May, we kicked off our inaugural Celebrate Design and Merchandising week by featuring student work in the Nancy Richardson Design Center and the Gifford Building. The celebration began with an exhibit in the RDC, highlighting a collaboration between digital textile design and draping students. Product development capstone students displayed their work in the Gustafson Gallery. Merchandising capstone students showcased work on the third floor of the Gifford Building. The department even hosted a “nice cream” food truck in partnership with the Design and Merchandising Leadership Team. The celebration culminated with the annual fashion show at Canvas Stadium and the Interior Architecture and Design Senior Show at the RDC, in person, after two years of virtual celebrations.

We also celebrated the achievements of individual students and faculty who continue to engage in learning, teaching, and research that has been recognized for excellence by University colleagues and external academic and industry organizations. Sara Bovaird, an interior architecture and design student, was recognized as the College of Health and Human Sciences 2022 Outstanding Senior for her many academic accomplishments and leadership activities. Ren Bergeron, a senior IAD student, received the Spirit of CHHS Award for her community-focused work. Latifah Hirchi-Vogl’s garment design was on display in New York City, and she was honored as one of two runners-up in the Metropolitan Museum of Art Costume Institute College Fashion Design Competition.

Hirchi-Vogl was also one of five students along with Krista Melusky, Graeme MacInnis, Caroline Floyd, and Cecilia Kastner, to receive awards from the Fashion Scholarship Fund. Alumni Megan Jackson and Nina Struble won BEST awards and Merit Awards, respectively, from the International Interior Design Association for their senior capstone work. Additionally, three student groups advised by Dr. Maria Delgado won awards at Demo Day for their work on the Architectural Virtual Library, Affordable Tiny Homes, and User-Centered Design and Virtual Reality, and two student groups won awards at the Celebrate Undergraduate Research and Creativity event for research Co-designing and Experiential Textile Science Lab and Participatory Design with Rural Communities.

Dr. Jain Kwon’s Spatial Perception and Cognitive Experience laboratory, composed of graduate and undergraduate students, received an award at the CHHS Research Day for Distinction in Creative Scholarship. Dr. Maria Delgado received a Faculty Excellence: Provost Teaching Scholar honorable mention award in recognition of her engaged teaching. Both Dr. Kwon and Dr. Delgado have been selected to participate in CSU’s 2022-2023 Engagement Scholars’ Academy. We also extend congratulations to Dr. Kristen Morris, who was officially tenured and promoted to associate professor. Dr. Morris’s design research also won an award for Distinction in Creative Scholarship at CHHS Research Day.

The Avenir Museum of Design and Merchandising (University Center for the Arts, 216 E. Lake St.) kicked off its summer hours June 4.  The museum is open Tuesday-Friday, noon-5 p.m. and Saturday, 10 a.m.-3 p.m. SCAASI: Elegance and Glamour from Day to Night is currently on exhibit through July 30, 2022.  We are excited to announce that in August, the Avenir Museum will open a new exhibit as a tribute to Mr. Blackwell that will include Mr. Blackwell originals as well as student designs inspired by his original garments.

We look forward to welcoming our new faculty and a new cohort of first-year students in August. Best wishes to all of you for an enjoyable and memorable summer!

Go Rams!

Karen Hyllegard, Department Head

Student Success

Five design and merchandising students awarded scholarships from the Fashion Scholarship Fund

This year, five CSU students in the apparel and merchandising major and concentrating in apparel design and production received a scholarship for their incredible work and research.

CSU’s American Society of Interior Designers student group awarded chapter of the year

The American Society of Interior Designers is an association representing all sectors of interior design and provides both professional and student memberships.

CSU interior design graduate student awarded national scholarship for mentorship in interior design education

Alea Schmidt originally moved to Colorado because of her passion for the outdoors and the environment. Now she is harnessing that passion into her work and research in interior design by prioritizing Eco-Cultural Design Logic and sustainability.

Department of Design and Merchandising student represents CSU style in the bright lights of New York City

Latifah Hirchi-Vogl was recently selected as a finalist for the Metropolitan Museum of Art (The MET) Costume Institute College Fashion Design Competition in New York City.

Outstanding Grads

Outstanding interior architecture and design grad overcomes personal tragedy to earn her degree

Shelby Archuleta’s college journey coincided with her father’s treatment and death from a rare cancer. Through the intensely difficult time, Archuleta found faculty and staff at CSU were there for her with unwavering support for her success.

After a decade, outstanding apparel and merchandising grad finds the perfect fit studying product development

Growing up, Jared Tarzian never thought he would attend CSU, but it was the apparel and merchandising major and product development concentration that eventually won him over and shaped his unique blend of analysis and creativity.

College Outstanding Senior honored for academic leadership achievements in design and merchandising

Each year, the CSU College of Health and Human Sciences recognizes a graduating senior for their outstanding academic achievement, leadership, research, and service. This year, the Outstanding Senior is DM student Sara Bovaird.

Shows and Exhibits

Three students honored for their collections at ‘All in Bloom’ show

Three Colorado State University apparel design and production students earned recognition for their collections at the May 6 “All in Bloom” fashion show inside Canvas Stadium.

CSU interior architecture and design students celebrate at senior show

For the first time since 2019, seniors in Colorado State University’s Interior Architecture and Design major gathered in person to celebrate the work presented in their senior capstone projects.

Students use innovative technology to preserve Mr. Blackwell patterns and create inspired textiles and garments

Colorado State University’s Avenir Museum of Design and Merchandising holds the world’s largest collection of garments, patterns, and business and advertising archives from the House of Blackwell.

‘Girl Powder,’ Scaasi’s glamour, New Threads make up Avenir’s Spring 2022 exhibits

Along with the Girl Powder collection, the Avenir also will unveil New Threads Spring 2022 and an exhibit from noted designer Arnold Scaasi, who dressed many U.S. first ladies and movie stars.


Third annual College of Health and Human Sciences Research Day spotlights transformational work

After last year’s move to a virtual poster show and presentations, this year’s third annual College of Health and Human Sciences Research Day was back in person – and the excitement was evident among both participants and visitors.


Health and Human Science Matters Podcast


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