A Local Designer’s Sustainable Vision for Michael Kors
Tran Truong looked into her crystal ball and saw a cool store concept for Coach. Then came another top fashion label.
Tran Truong is a talent to be reckoned with in the design world. For the second consecutive year, the 26-year-old Marymount University student (now alumna) in May took top honors in a national competition hosted by the visual merchandising company WindowsWear. This year’s challenge: Design a store concept for the 40th anniversary of fashion label Michael Kors with an eye toward sustainability and social change.
Truong’s innovative concept for Kors included sustainable materials such as recycled wood flooring, perforated mesh partitions to reduce energy use, and a digital mirror paired with an app that would allow customers to swap outfits virtually without having to physically change clothes. “I wanted to make users rethink the way they shop,” says the Woodbridge resident. “It’s not solely about the product quality—hence, it’s now an experience.”
For the 2020 WindowsWear competition, Truong designed a futuristic holiday retail store, window display, pop-up and event for Coach, all hypothetically set in the year 2030. Centering on a “crystal” theme, her design concept included a massive snow globe with the season’s handbag collection inside.
After studying architectural design in Vietnam, where she was born and raised, Truong transferred to Northern Virginia Community College in 2014 and discovered a passion for interior design. She decided to pursue her bachelor’s degree at Marymount in Arlington and graduated this spring. Next up: two internships in New York City, with Coach and Michael Kors. She hopes to one day work for the Smithsonian in D.C.
“As an Asian American immigrant, I hope to encourage anyone who has started a new life in a foreign country, just like I did, to have more confidence about who they truly are,” she says, “and what they can do.”