I wasn’t quite sure what to make of NBC’s Fashion Star when I tuned in earlier this year. Unlike Project Runway, the show didn’t offer the tension or drama that we have come to expect from reality television; the designers weren’t sewing their own pieces; and because the goal was for the designers to sell their pieces to mainstream retailers (Saks Fifth Avenue, H&M and Macys) the pieces just weren’t as exciting and creative in comparison to the ones that I was used to seeing on Project Runway. To make a long story short, designer Kara Laricks was the only reason why I kept watching Fashion Star until the very end.
Kara was the only designer that looked like a designer. She had a strong and distinct personal style (hair, clothes, did I already say hair) which drew me in from the first episode that I watched. Her distinct personal style translated to all of her designs and I loved the fashion risks and the creativity that she executed in all of her pieces. I was relieved, when she finally sold something to H&M (I have never been inside at Saks Fifth Avenue because I don’t think I could ever afford anything there. Those of you who watched the show know that Saks Fifth Avenue was buying from Kara, almost exclusively throughout the contest). In the final episode, Kara was probably the only person who was surprised when she was announced as the winner. The design aesthetics of the other designers were strong (I was finally able to accept the fact that they couldn’t design anything that was too avant garde.. hmmpph!), but Kara was the front runner of the design contest from day one.
I am wearing one of the dresses from her winning collection that is now on sale at select H&M stores. Before you run out for your purchase there is an unfortunate truth that I have to share with you about this dress. I’ve been a big fan and customer of H&M and all her cheap fabulousness for about 6 years now. Although this dress is a stunning and interesting piece, I was less than happy with the quality of the craftmanship. Examine the seams of your dress thoroughly before you make your way to the cash register. And by thoroughly I mean that you should not only look, but that you should also do the gentle tug test to make sure that the seams don’t separate. I actually had to take my first dress back to the store to exchange it. I am happy with the one I have now and plan to wear it to the runway shows during African Fashion Week in New York City next month.
I am wearing:
Dress: Fashion Star winning collection pocket dress designed by Kara Laricks. $24.95 at H&M
This is my third mullet/hi low/fishtail hem dress that I have added to my collection. Click the link to see my mint green hi low/mullet dress and click to see my vintage black lace fishtail/hi low/fishtail dress.
Shoes: Nine West shoes that I have had forever. (Side note: Yes, I will finally repaint my toenails tomorrow night.)
Purse: This was one of the shoulder bags that I discovered last year when I combed through my Mom’s vast collection of stuff. I removed the straps and use it as a clutch now. (3 cheers for re-purposing and recycling!)
I bought two pieces from her collection. I will show you the other piece in my Friday post.
I am looking forward to hearing your feedback. Did you buy any of the Fashion Star pieces? What were your experiences?
Ossie took these photos.