Museum InfoMedia Room

DIA exterior at night
DIA exterior at night

Fashion Designers to create outfits inspired by Detroit Institute of Arts’ Samurai: Beyond the Sword - Samurai exhibition the inspiration for fashion contest hosted by DIA and Detroit Garment Group Guild

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Contact: Pamela Marcil 313-833-7899 

(Detroit)—Ten local fashion designers are putting their talents to the test in a competition hosted by the Detroit Institute of Arts (DIA) and the Detroit Garment Group Guild (DG3) and  inspired by the museum’s exhibition Samurai: Beyond the Sword, on view through June 1. 

“Beyond the Armor” challenges designers to create a complete outfit based on artworks in the exhibition. Dozens of entries were submitted and 10 finalists were chosen by the DIA and DG3. The designers visited the Samurai exhibition on March 18 for inspiration and will spend the next month creating their fashions.

The selected designers are:

  • Narjes Almajidi            Detroit, Wayne State University student
  • Janna Coumoundouros Clawson, Lilacpop Studio
  • Loren D. Jordan Southfield, LOJO
  • Sarah Lapinski          Detroit, Wound Menswear LLC
  • Bonnie Pearce         Northville, College for Creative Studies student
  • Kelly Sager         Ann Arbor, Kelly Lynne
  • Bridget Sullivan Grosse Pointe Farms, Bridget Sullivan Designs
  • Lena Harbali         Ann Arbor, Eastern Michigan University student
  • Deanna Zapico Troy, Deanna Zapico
  • Cheryl Zemke         Riverview, C. Creations, Riverview

Beginning March 27, the designers will post blogs and videos about their experiences at The finished outfits will be displayed in three tri-county locations: Henry Ford West Bloomfield Hospital, 6777 W. Maple Road, West Bloomfield, April 21–27; Warren Community Center, 5460 Arden Rd., Warren, April 28-May 4; and a venue in Canton, to be determined, May 5–12. 

The public will determine the winner by voting for their favorite outfit at any of the three venues, or online, beginning April 21 at The winning design will be announced at a fashion show at the DIA on Saturday, May 17, at noon.

“Beyond the Armor” is the third edition of the museum’s “DIA Inspired” program, which asks people to use the museum as a source of inspiration and to create works of art based on what they see.

DG3 is a nonprofit that provides education and opportunities for Detroit’s fashion community and beyond. Educational programming ranges from an annual fashion conference focused on the business of fashion to an industrial-sewing certification program, coming this fall. For more information about DG3, visit

Hours and Admission
Museum hours are 9 a.m.–4 p.m. Tuesdays–Thursdays, 9 a.m.–10 p.m. Fridays, and 10 a.m.–5 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays. General admission (excludes ticketed exhibitions) is free for Wayne, Oakland and Macomb county residents and DIA members. For all others, $8 for adults, $6 for seniors ages 62+, $4 for ages 6–17. For membership information, call 313-833-7971.


The Detroit Institute of Arts (DIA), one of the premier art museums in the United States, is home to more than 60,000 works that comprise a multicultural survey of human creativity from ancient times through the 21st century. From the first Van Gogh painting to enter a U.S. museum (Self-Portrait, 1887), to Diego Rivera's world-renowned Detroit Industry murals (1932–33), the DIA’s collection is known for its quality, range, and depth. The DIA’s mission is to create opportunities for all visitors to find personal meaning in art.

Programs are made possible with support from residents of Wayne, Oakland and Macomb counties.