University Museum Scores Fashion Touchdown

New exhibit showcases one-of-a-kind designer helmets created to benefit the NFL Foundation

An NFL helmet designed by Alexis Bittar is a highlight of a new exhibit at the University Museum. Photo courtesy of Bloomingdale's.

An NFL helmet designed by Alexis Bittar is a highlight of a new exhibit at the University Museum. Photo courtesy of Bloomingdale’s.

OXFORD, Miss. – Fashionistas and football fans alike will find reasons to celebrate with the University Museum‘s newest installation, “Bloomingdale’s Fashion Touchdown: NFL Haute Couture Helmets.” The exhibit is the only one of its kind featuring designer football helmets from Bloomingdale’s Fashion Touchdown, a project that benefited the NFL Foundation.

In celebration of Super Bowl XLVIII, the first Super Bowl ever held in the New York City area, Bloomingdale’s, the NFL and the Council of Fashion Designers of America seized an opportunity to highlight football and fashion for a great cause. Their collaboration engaged some of the world’s top designers to put their creative touches on 48 NFL helmets, which were auctioned off during an online charity event that raised more than $73,000 to benefit the NFL Foundation.

Robert Saarnio, University Museum director, took part in the auction and acquired three helmets for the museum’s collection. The exhibit will feature the actual helmets designed by Alexis Bittar, Fenton/Fallon and Lela Rose. High-resolution photographs of the remaining helmets – created by fashion icons Helmut Lang, Kenneth Cole, Nicole Miller and others – complete the exhibit.

“No other museum in the country is showcasing all of the helmets, and we are thrilled to be on the cutting edge of this unique concept,” Saarnio said. “The exhibit has the potential to draw in an entirely new audience for us, and we are grateful for the cooperation from Bloomingdale’s to help make this happen.”

Bloomingdale’s is supplying the museum with photographs of the entire collection, as well as an interactive video featuring rotating images of the helmets.

“When planning our marketing campaigns, especially those with a charity component, we hope they reach a large audience,” said Anne Keating, Bloomingdale’s senior vice president of public relations, special events and corporate philanthropy. “For the Bloomingdale’s brand and our commitment to giving back to be a focus of an exhibit in such a prestigious university is more than anyone could hope for, and we are proud to support this exhibit.”

The NFL haute couture helmets exhibit coincides with the 2014 Ole Miss Rebels football season, which includes much-anticipated home games against SEC rivals Alabama, Tennessee, Auburn and Mississippi State. The exhibit is free to the public and runs Aug. 1, 2014-Jan. 15, 2015.

The University Museum, which is celebrating 75 years of exhibitions and service to the community, is at the intersection of University Avenue and Fifth Street. Hours are 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Tuesdays-Saturdays. For more information, visit http://museum.olemiss.edu or call 662-915-7073.

For more information on the Bloomingdale’s Fashion Touchdown project, contact Katie Nida-Rovano at katie.nida-rovano@bloomingdales.com or 212-705-2443, or Jamie Frankel at jamie.frankel@bloomingdales.com or 212-705-3911.

About Sharon Morris