Project Ethos at Los Angeles Fashion Week 2010 is every upcoming designers dream to showcase their lines, and every fashionistas playground to view the newest most unique collections of the season. I had the opportunity to take part in this exquisite event with Runway Icon who took me under their wings and as an upcoming fashion designer given the chance to interview the designers of the night to get an inside scoop of the fashion industry and business.
There were many celebrities in support of the designers walking the red carpet, including; Wedil David ( “Valentine’s Day) Tahj Mawry (Dsperate Housewives) Virginia Newcomb (Lovely Bones) Dustin Varoness (Secret Life of American Teenager) Adam Taki (Law and Order) Rochelle Ayetes ( Madea’s Family Reunion and White Chicks), Music Producer Sleepy Brown, CariDee English, winner of America’s Next Top Model, Aubry Fisher (LA Ink) Jon Alston (Oakland Raiders), Christiane King (Project Runway Designer) and music bands such as the Millionaires and Nylon Pink.
The night started with a performance from Bruno Mars whom made every girl feel as if he was singing to them, especially with his hit song “Beautiful Girl”. This was just a warm up of what was about to come next, the Spring 2010 fashion show with collections from ten faboulous designers such as: Season six project Runway Designer, Gordana Gehlhausen “GOGA by Gordana”, season seven Project Runway designer Jesus Estrada, “House of Estrada”, Seth Wellington, Arka, EMEL, Devious Damzels, Marialia, Love Child, Fulani and Rumple Munkeh. After the runway show it was followed with music performance from Mando Fresko and the Love Grenades.
I had the honor to interview some of the fashion designers, talk about their collection, what inspired them, and their advice for me as an upcoming fashion designer myself. Jesus Estrada was one of my first interviews for the night, and not to mention one of my favorite designers on season seven “Project Runway”. He gave me some encouraging advice about the tough world of the fashion industry; “Many people will say you cannot do it, but stick to your dream and believe in yourself, and just go for it” said Estrada and his advice for me reflects his own success. When the name “House of Estrada” appeared on the screen as the first model opened the show, everyone in the room was waiting with excitement and cheering until the last model walked the runway. His style is exquisite; one sleeve dresses, oversized scarfs, tailored fitted jackets and pants, with melancholic darker shades of maroons, blacks, grays and blues, with a touch of yellow.
In contrast to Estrada, the Project Runway designer season 6, Gordana Gelhausen’s designs were more feminine elegant pieces, embracing female femininity, fur cropped jackets, gowns, sexy cocktail dresses with light shades of light purple, grays, blacks and whites. On my interview with Gordana she told me that this collection was inspired based on her last trip to China with Mongolian inspirational pieces, and all the jewelry on the runway were hand made by Gordana herself. The craftsmanship in this collection was breathtaking, I can see myself wearing any of her peaces and feeling beautiful in them. Gordana is from former Yugoslavia and to watch her become a successful designer in the U.S., and fulfill her “American Dream” as a fashion designer, is inspirational for many upcoming designers with the same dream. She left me with some words of advice: “If you have passion for it, work hard and never give up, your work and talent will be acknowledged”.
Amongst the many glamorous gown and cocktails designers, a streetwear t-shirt line “Arka” caught my attention with its powerful graphic messages and symbols on their men’s shirts. “Arka” which means to be “The King of all Kings” was founded last year by three Californian partners: Burag Celikian, Shant der Ashodian, and Sevan Aliksanian. I had the opportunity to talk with one of the designers, Burag Celikian whom mentioned that “You have to love your product and have a passion for, work hard day and night, and by doing so, nothing will stop you from reaching the level of success you envision for your company and yourself one day” and with that being said, Arka’s success also speaks for itself.
One of the most down-to-earth designers was Michelle Liu for EMEL she introduced very sleek, sophisticated women’s cocktail dresses for her Urban Dryads Spring 2010 collection that made jaws drop. Darker shades of grays, with asymmetrical pleats that accentuate and hug the female body, made with eco-friendly knit fabrics.
The best part of getting to know these amazing designers, is that despite all the different walks of life they each come from, they all have one thing in common which is: “Dedication” . The key to their successful fashion empires, the dedication to stay up night and day, to develop a simple sketch from paper to a runway, to never give up their dreams in this tough competitive field but yet to stay true to themselves and create a legacy with clothing!
Runway Icon | Los Angeles Fashion | Runway Model