Instructor Spotlight: Stephen Cucci

Stephen J. Cucci is an FIT alum and the CEO/Creative Director of STITCHbySJC Designs, a visual merchandising and design freelance company. STITCHbySJC works with specialty brands on revamping and revitalizing the creative direction for today’s changing marketplace, staging/production/styling for TV/film/editorial and leading international lectures and training workshops on related topics.


Stephen Cucci Teaches:
HSX 120: The Fabulous World of Fashion Forecasting

Teaching Philosophy:
I believe that the fashion industry is constantly evolving as new opportunities present themselves as a result of emerging technologies. I teach my students to be open and flexible and not box themselves in, but to always leave one side open for growth.

Industry Experience:

“Best at Show” for the design and Merchandising of trade booths at MAGIC in Las Vegas.

Styling Work for Inked Magazine:

Final Week of the Business and Art of Cosmetics Course

We can find inspiration in just about anything.  A rose petal, inspired us to create a face tonic.  A braid inspired us to research the history of hair styles. Romantic dresses floating in the spring breeze inspired us as we analyzed perfumes. Being in the Art and Business of Cosmetics course for three weeks inspired and educated us to understand how it all begins and how it all ends in a final product ready for the consumer.

Breaking down a scent into the three levels of notes was fascinating.  I will never take a scent for granted again!  Can a scent be both freeing and mature, breezy and feminine? It certainly can.  My partner and I created an inspiration board for a perfume called Spring Breeze.

The highlight this week was our class field trip to Bluemercury. The owners graciously opened their store for us early so that we could get a sense of their marketing approach and the products that they sell.

Here are some of the products Bluemercury sells and that the owners so generously gave us as gifts.

I had to put the creative side of my brain on hold for a bit as I listened intently to their story of how Bluemercury started.  A tremendous amount of time and hard work is required to start a cosmetics business.  There is so much to learn.

My wonderful FIT experience has come to an end.  My days at FIT went by so quickly that I cannot believe it is almost August.  Every day was enlightening and educational.  The students in my class were delightful and I look forward to staying in touch with them.

– Sasha Worenklein

Introducing Precollege Blogger: Kayla

Hey, everyone! My name is Kayla Cariffe and I’m a 16-year-old book nerd, makeup addict, and theater aficionado. I’m currently going into my senior year (how did that happen? Honestly I’m still six years old) in high school. I love to participate in school activities like plays, chorus, mock trial (which is pretty cool because you get to act out a fake court case with a real judge and everything!), and speech and debate. On the off chance I’m not stuck at school until 10 o’clock (a rather common occurrence, shockingly), you can find me at home, curled up with a nice book, like Harry Potter for the millionth time, or bingeing on tv shows (my current show being How I Met Your Mother with my mom).

I am from Staten Island, New York and this tends to affect my personal view about a lot of things. For example, drivers on this island are the absolute worst but our pizza is the absolute best!

This summer, I am taking part in the Cosmetics and Fragrance Marketing Precollege Class as well as the Short Film Basics Class. I am really excited to take part in these classes because of how interesting they sound. I am also quite interested to see how well I survive traveling into the city every day by myself (because as previously mentioned, I am more of a six-year-old than a sixteen-year-old).

I am also curious to experience a college campus in a way that makes me feel as if I were a college student and not just some high school student going to an open house. I am really excited to start blogging because I love to write, I love pretending I’m like famous bloggers, and interesting things always seem to happen to me so I’m excited to share my good/bad/plain weird experiences with all of you. I don’t really know where I want to go to college for sure, but I am strongly leaning towards FIT and in the future, I hope to be an honors student and to make it into the Cosmetics and Fragrance Marketing Program.

That’s all I have for now. Stay tuned for more posts about my experiences at FIT, my progress in my classes, tips and tricks for current and future Precollege students, and much more!

Don’t Forget To Be Awesome!


Summer Live 2017: Week 2

I used to think there was nothing as much fun as scoring a new makeup that just came out. How many of you agree with me about that sport?  Well, it’s even more fun if you understand the history of cosmetics and how it evolved. 

This week my partner and I researched the history of bronzers. They became very popular in the 1980’s when people finally began to understand the dangers of sun damage. People wanted that sun-kissed look without destroying their skin. In 1984 NARS cosmetics created their iconic bronzer which is still popular today. 

We moved on to the history of hair and had fun making a chart showing how hair styles evolved over time. 

We mixed, we touched, we analyzed, we discussed and we created shampoos, scents and tonics. 

Today we made bath salts. We tried the product and we were proud of our results. The bath salt felt incredibly smooth on our skin

A guest speaker who graduated from FIT, and who is a Professional Makeup Artist came to our class today.  She was very inspiring as she told us about her company and her travels around the world to lecture on the deeper meaning and culture of cosmetics. 

We have also been reviewing popular cosmetics that are on the market today. 

We become very critical when reviewing someone else’s product.  That is a good lesson to keep in mind when we each have our own cosmetic companies. Be critical! Quality control is very important.

-Sasha Worenklein

Summer Live 2017: Week 1

What a great start to my first day in class!  Our first assignment after we chose partners was to recreate a bath and body works body mist called “Sweet Cinnamon Pumpkin”.

Each pair of partners had a tray of 4 different scented liquids to use in order to recreate the  scent.  My partner and I found it hard to keep it from smelling too floral. Then we made it smell too much like hand sanitizer and no one wants their perfume smelling like that.  We finally managed to get it to close to the scent. The fragrance smelled sweet, a little floral, and a touch of spice. Almost perfect.  The best part was we got to take the fragrance we made home!


Today we learned how to make rose water toner. We broke off each petal of the rose and put them in a “boat” which is a little bowl. We placed alcohol, acid, and aloe  in with the petals. Then we mixed the liquids with the petals until it was ready to be crushed into a funnel. When we crushed the rose petals with the liquids through the funnel into a beaker, we actually created a pretty rose water toner. I loved that we got to take the beautiful product home with us!

The three hours of class flew by.  My next assignment is to create a timeline of the bronzer. Doing the research was fascinating, and I look forward to sharing my findings with all of you next week.

– Sasha