Study Abroad Adventures: Milan Fashion Week


This semester, I’ve had the life-changing opportunity to study abroad in Milan, Italy. Ending up in the fashion capital of the world was no coincidence. I’ve never had the opportunity to live in a big city, let alone one that revolved around art and fashion, so Milan was a no-brainer when it came to choosing a location. 

Through my program, I take fashion and business classes that fulfill my Business minor requirements at Rice and allow me to explore different paths within the fashion industry. Along with my Managing Fashion and Luxury Brands, Strategic Management, and Italian courses at IES, I am taking a course with the Milano School of Fashion (MKS), focused on fashion history and trends, social media and communication and styling. 

Studying abroad in Milan meant that I had the opportunity to attend the Fall/Winter Milan Fashion Week at the end of February. The city truly comes alive during this week, and the street style is unparalleled. Being able to conceptualize the theory and trends I learned in class  by simply taking the metro home was surreal. 

The Camera nazionale della moda italiana (or National Chamber of Italian Fashion) provides a public schedule for the week, outlining the times and locations that all the brands will be presenting their new collections. Unless you’re a buyer, someone with considerable fashion influence, or connected to either of the aforementioned,  getting an invitation to any of the Italian luxury shows  is nearly impossible.  I emailed countless brands to help them backstage, but to no avail. Like the rest of the no name  fashion junkies, I planned to stand  outside of the fashion shows for hours, just for a glimpse of the magic.  I stood outside the Fendi, Roberto Cavalli, Prada, and Gucci shows, where I was lucky enough to spot some of my favorite actresses, models, and influencers.


Model wearing colorful designer pantsuit, posing in front of cameras and a crowd of people.
Model wearing an intricate black designer piece, posing in front of cameras and a crowd of people.

Additionally, I was fortunate enough to have the opportunity to attend a fashion show through my partner institution class. I attended Christopher Raxxy, a Chinese Luxury down jacket brand with a mathematical crossover fashion design that would make Rice engineering professors proud. It was an incredible experience I am so thankful for!

Model wearing complex blue piece walking down runway in a grand venue.
Model wearing complex green piece walking down runway in a grand venue.

But the best part of my fashion week and, quite honestly one of the best days of my life, was the Moschino show. Somehow, I was in the right place at the right time, and I was invited inside to watch the show. Moschino’s press team was incredibly kind, and I’m so grateful I got to witness Jeremy Scott’s creations on the runway.

Models wearing colorful pieces walking down runway.
Models wearing colorful pieces walking down runway.

Overall, studying  in Milan has been an extraordinary experience. I am so thankful to Rice’s Study Abroad Office for their guidance and making this journey possible. 

- Devika J., Martel '24


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