Lunar Gala Continues to Fuse Pittsburgh’s Fashion Interest

The annual, student-produced runway show highlights the resilience of Pittsburgh’s fashion community. Catch the live show at CMU on Sat March 2.

by Jessa Gibboney
February 21, 2019

Lunar Gala, entering its 23rseason, is an annual fashion show solely produced by Carnegie Mellon University students. It will be held on Saturday, March 2nd at 8:00 p.m. in the Wiegand Gym within the Jared L. Cohon University Center.

More than 120 students, across various disciplines from technology to art to science, come together for this show. This year’s producers are Jumana Akoad, a Neuroscience student, Kenneth Cohen, an Information Systems student, and Ruhani Mumick, a Biology student. They aim to present an accessible fashion experience, while pushing the boundaries of design and production.

Anomie (ˈanəˌmē/) is this year’s theme. Anomie “is a condition of society that isolates the individual through the dissolution of community.”



“This year’s theme is a reaction to 2018 as a year of intense political and social polarity in the media,” said Anna Gusman, Creative Director of this year’s Lunar Gala. “While the internet has become a space where communities of different creeds and beliefs can congregate, the constant expanding, fluctuating nature of it distorts our perceptions of the world and of each other.”

Gusman continues, “It takes a certain kind of brazenness and resilience to keep trudging together through the many uncertainties of this time. These are the traits that I think really define the designers of the show and the many creative voices across Pittsburgh.”

One of the goals of the Lunar Gala is to engage with the fashion community beyond campus. They have partnered with Style 412, a not-for-profit organization building and sustaining resources for the Pittsburgh Fashion Industry. Together they created a mentorship program leading up to the runway show. Local fashion industry professionals were paired with student designers to discuss topics from concept development to technical skill.


Photo: Rose Colored Creative



“Mentoring for the Lunar Gala has been exhilarating,” said Jen Rocket, a Technical Designer and Consultant, and Style 412 mentor. “These students come at fashion from many different perspectives creating the best puzzles to figure out. They challenge just about every angle of sewing I have experienced from couture fashion, costuming, and engineering for product development.”


Photo: Rose Colored Creative


Though Anomie has a dystopic undertone, the community behind the show feels optimistic and progressive. As Cohen wrote on Lunar Gala’s blog, attendees of the show can expect, “A paradigm shift, a radical disruption of the fashion industry.”

Follow Lunar Gala’s Instagram for daily sneak peeks of the show.

Tickets range from $20 to $75. Click here to purchase.



Carnegie Mellon University
Getting there
5000 Forbes Ave, Pittsburgh, PA 15213, USA
Mon-Fri 9am–5pm
Sat-Sun Closed
More Info

Jessa is a writer and poet, but above all, a storyteller. Her blog houses poetry and essays on sustainable style, freelance and motherhood. Through her writing endeavors, she has worked with local and global brands such as Carnegie Museum of Art, TRYP Pittsburgh | Lawrenceville, Pittsburgh Opera, Cartier, Earth Brands and George Dickel Tennessee Whisky. Jessa lives in Pittsburgh with her husband, Ben, daughter, Louise and their pup, Opal. She wears the same rings every day, believes anything secondhand has a good story to tell and likes her whiskey straight up.

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