PR, Ep. 2, Another Clear Winner!

For Project Runway’s 2nd episode, we not only had the traditional unconventional material challenge, but by the runway’s end, another clear winner had been announced. Before all that, let’s hash out the episode details.


The designers met Tim at Hallmark, alongside Amy Merchant, Director of Branding for Hallmark Signature. Amy explained that just as with fashion, cards too can be pieces of art with stories to tell! In that spirit and for this unconventional materials challenge, it was only natural that the Hallmark Signature greeting cards be the materials used for the designers’ looks. The designers ransacked the Hallmark store, very quickly with only 2 minutes to shop, as they looked for inspirations and card embellishments that would potentially assist in embellishing their own creations this week.


It was then time to head back to the workroom for this 1-day challenge. There was some sorting and even designer sharing of the greeting cards. Although Edmond wasn’t quite so keen on sharing his thoughts or vision for the challenge. He even hesitated in sharing his plan during the behind-the-scenes interview! There was no singing this week in the workroom, but there was a little drama with Swapnil and Blake. Okay boys, to your corners!


Next up, Tim-time. Overall, Tim was thrilled with the designers’ ambition, but he cautioned the designers to watch their time. He worried more with time for some, such as Amanda, while others, he was worried about too much muslin or looks being too busy. Model fittings then seemed quite rushed, with focus on tight fits and worry over shortness.


By night’s end, Amanda was still in struggle-mode, while others were over the glue gun burns! The morning of seemed just as chaotic, with Hanmiao not sure what direction her look was supposed to go on, Gabrielle’s dress not opening, and Amanda calling out a manatee penis! It was then time for the runway, and joining Nina, Heidi, and Zac this week as guest judge was actress and producer Ashley Tisdale.


This week the judges named a top 4 and only a bottom 2. However, being that the judges weren’t all in agreement about this top 4, or at least one of the looks, I think they should have and definitely could have named a bottom 3. I’m not sure it would have changed the results, but a couple of designers could have too used stern warnings.

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Ashley definitely got a word of warning from Heidi. It seems as if she did the same thing that sent one designer home this week. If Ashley didn’t have immunity, would she have been in the bottom? Yes. Sent home? Who knows?!? But Joseph for sure could have easily landed in the bottom with this oddly shaped, boxy skirt.

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Merline too could have been a bottom contender. This look was sloppy, very arts & crafty, and even a bit in shambles. Gabrielle’s look too seemed to have some workmanship issues, definitely a short look! I see the work and vision here though, but I think she got caught up in it. But compared to her grey bland look from last week, I was happy to see more creative vision here, even if the vision wasn’t fully realized. (Great JustFab heels though, shout-out!)

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Lindsey had a great start here as well, a vision, but I didn’t totally buy it. This look seemed a bit stiff, but I saw more here than the basic romper from last week so I’m hopeful. Jake’s look was a pretty, sparkly look, but not much more than a LBD. I wanted a little more here. This look just seemed a little safe. But I did love the fabulous JustFab accessories, metallic silver heels & a black clutch.

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Candice had a little disco-ball fever with this metal-esque look. I thought it looked well-made for this type of challenge. Hanmiao too had an intriguing look. I thought the shape & fit was off, but the way she utilized the cards and organized them, it made her look very eye-catching.


Laurie was actually in my top. I loved this gold, shimmery frock. The top/bodice was exquisite. I thought it was fun, playful, and flirty! Keep up the good work Laurie!


But onto the judges’ top and to the clear winner of the week, Edmond. This bridal look was divinely elegant. It was as if art was coming down the runway. And way to help with pushing the brand Edmond; I’m sure Hallmark loved this! Heidi was right to point out so many great things about this ls look, such as the volume, proportions, and yes, even sexiness.


Shout-out for the nude heels, courtesy of JustFab. And Nina was 100% right here, this was such a special moment!


Blake may have been blunt earlier on in the episode, but going from last week to this look, it was massively impressive. Yes it was glitter mania. And you will either love it or hate it. But you have to look at this dress for what it is. It’s a fun party dress. You could rock it for a birthday, or even as Nina suggested, New Years. I’m sure you would stand out and sparkle all night!


I can see why Swapnil was in the top. I think both the top and the bottom here were phenomenal. However, I disagreed with the judges’ love of these 2 aspects as a combo deal. I felt such a disconnect. But I am head over heels about this crazy, cool floral embellished skirt.


Kelly rounded out the judges top 4. I still say a bottom 3 would have been better. But Kelly did do some great work here with this detailed crop top. The hoodie on the back, it was all just so stunning! I wasn’t crazed over the fringe skirt, but Kelly was another who took a big leap from the previous week’s look, so Kudos to her!


So in the bottom, only 2, Amanda and David. We all know Amanda was struggling with her skirt, meaning time was not on her side this week. The skirt was a little crazy, but I don’t think this look was as bad as the judges were going on about, especially in light of at least 2 other designers who I mentioned earlier, Merline & Joseph.


This top was pretty special. I’m not sure what was so special in certain other looks that kept them out of the bottom. But Amanda should have kept it more simple with the skirt. I’m glad she didn’t leave this week though!


Shout-out for this lovely side-swept updo, courtesy of Sally Beauty.


This left David going home. For almost any other challenge, I’m not sure the decision would be the same. But he really showed very little creativity with putting text on sparkled muslin. This is the same as when in the past judges have called out designers for using table cloth and shower curtains. The whole point is to use unconventional materials and David failed to do that.


I will give a shout-out though for David on all fronts — love the JustFab heels; Sally Beauty luscious waves; and natural, minimalist Mary Kay make-up look.

This might be one of the best bottom looks ever eliminated, but by not following the challenge guidelines, not thinking outside of the box, the judges could not ignore these facts.


Irina Shabayeva — Breathtaking Couture Designs


As a fashion fanatic I am of course a Project Runway enthusiast as well. As such, I was a huge fan of Project Runway Season 6 winner and Project Runway All-Stars Season 3 designer, Irina Shabayeva.


Her work has always been stunningly breathtaking and quite mesmerizing. So having the chance to not only see her work in person, but to also meet this multi-faceted talent, there was no way I could turn this opportunity down!



So firstly, I was able to attend a special, sneak-peak preview for Irina’s work at Space Sixteen. This preview was for her 2015 Bridal Couture fashion show. Space Sixteen is a classy, unique boutique in the heart of Soho, a space for artists and innovative designers to showcase their work.


The preview was definitely enough to peak my interest, but Irina’s runway show was immaculately conceived and utterly divine.


The show was hosted by The Set NYC and Freedom Ladder, with the goal to help in achieving Freedom Ladder’s mission to end human trafficking.



The show was held at the Holy Apostles Ballroom in Chelsea. Catering for the event was provided by Noels Catering Kitchen.



Irina will be showcasing her talents again, on June 4th, also at the Holy Apostles Ballroom, for Fashion Night Out, another event to end Child Trafficking. The Set NYC is too putting on this series of runway presentations, also including shows by Alex Vinash and Reverie. You can purchase tickets for this thru Eventbrite.



So enjoy a few other looks from this fabulous runway show, once again for the lovely and creative Irina Shabayeva.




Photo credits —

PRAS — All I Can Say is Hmmmmmmm???

Okay. That’s not true. I am a blogger. I have plenty more to say. So note, Project Runway All-Star designers, there is no need for this!

pras4-ep11-episode16And yes Isaac, this was my exact sentiment about this runway too. Your expression here is spot on!


The challenge this week was supposed to be all about bridesmaid dresses. There was only 1 dress this week that ready bridesmaid at all. Two others might have stood a chance, but poor execution issues overwhelmed those looks. And wait, we are watching PRAS right?? This is the point of the season where we are supposed to be watching the best of the best. But seeing so many mistakes, it’s really unforgiving at this point. I know the designers work under time constraints, but the mistakes being made this season, especially on this challenge, seem to be more from construction and fabric choices, not time. I’m not sure what was going on here, but hopefully the designers will do better next week!


But let’s backtrack a bit, the designers went to meet Georgina & Alyssa at the Marchesa showroom to receive their challenge details for the week. Keren Craig, co-founder of Marchesa, also joined Georgina & Alyssa. Alyssa announced she would be officiating a real wedding ceremony and it would be on the PR runway, a PR wedding first! The bride, Dana, was there as well for her final fitting, but a major issue, she didn’t have bridesmaid dresses yet. Cue designers, we need your help! The designers were to create a bridesmaid look that would please the bride and be suitable for events following the ceremony. All in all, the look would need versatility. There was also a huge prize at stake — the winning designer would receive Marchesa for Lenox glassware and chinaware, front row seats during NYFW for the Marchesa show, and a diamond ring from Marchesa’s new jewelry line, which will be exclusively sold at Macy’s. So the designers chatted with Dana for a bit and then were off to Mood with their budget of $150 to get started on this 1-day challenge.


Sonjia was a major focal point this week. She didn’t sketch out her look, so for most of the episode, as we’ve seen happen to her before, she was unsure of the direction for her outfit. She broke down in tears while eating dinner. Designer breakdowns are frequent for PR. The designers hit a breaking point, designer frustrations and exhaustion. I felt for her, but this was not the first week where she showed signs of struggle. The whole breakdown segment was a bit odd since it was over what we’ve repeatedly seen as her normal designer process. Anywho, let’s see what the other designers were up to, check out Zanna-time!


Joining Zanna was Edward Chapman, CEO for Marchesa. They reminded Dmitry to keep versatility in mind. For Helen, she needed to make the transition from business to bridal. Fabio needed to push himself more. But for all the designers, they needed to focus on execution & elegance, and of course to impress Georgina.


The designers were back to work. Fabio helped out Sonjia by giving her some fabric he wasn’t using. She was finally figuring out the direction for her look. It was soon time for the morning of the runway. Michelle was having some fit issues as she was dressing her bridesmaid. Everyone else was doing some last minute fine tuning. Surprisingly, the bride herself was not a guest judge this week. Instead, we had host of SYTYCD, Cat Deeley.

pras4-ep11-episode21Overall, the judges were disappointed this week. No one received a truly great critique. So even with Helen winning, it was sort of a best of the worst scenario. It was a safe dress, very lovely, but where was the WOW factor.


Actually, I didn’t think this read bridesmaid at all. Would I wear it? Yes. But I wouldn’t think bridesmaid if I was looking at this dress online or in a store. I think had it not been fit and flare, just a fitted look, it would have worked better.

Mary Kay shout-out, natural, fresh beauty look — lightly bronzed cheeks, soft, subtle lip, copper eye.


The judges thought the look was a bit on the older side, but for me, that was just the upper portion. I think there was a disconnect, the top read mature, but the bottom read youthful.


So Helen did an okay job this week, I just wish there was something more dazzling since it was the winning look. But there were some lovely aspects, the lace on the neckline, the slightly open back. I liked Dmitry’s look better, but with what the other designers put down the runway, Helen was the only other top 2 contender in my book. Chi hair care shout-out, gorgeous, stunning, up-do, love this braided look!


Sonjia was in the judges top, but I think the judges were way wrong about Dmitry’s dress this week, so I want to discuss him next. The judges seemed to think his look was not special, safe, and that they had seen it before. Really you could of said this about Helen’s look too. And in fact, they did say some of this for her dress. Yet she wins and Dmitry is chastised and put in the bottom. Okay judges, yea, that makes sense.

Mary Kay shout-out, beautiful! Pretty nude lip, great pop of navy blue color on the eye.


Was this Dmitry’s best work? Not at all. But was it deserving of Isaac’s major rant during the critiques? Laughably no! I’m glad that at least Isaac made a point to scold all, but to go over board about Dmitry’s look alone, especially in light of such poorer executed looks. I guess they really needed to make Dmitry have a bad week so the judges put on some major acting. But this viewer is not buying it. And no way does the rant/bad critique match this dress.


This dress read bridesmaid. I would wear it and could easily see it for a wedding. But it also had versatility. I could see this look being worn for other occasions. The sheer neckline was spectacular. There was such a regal, luxe quality about it. And yes, did it look similar to what the bride was wearing at the meeting. A little. There was only 2 similar aspects though, the color and the fact that he made use of a sheer neckline. Dmitry picked navy blue since it was in the bride’s color palette of choices. And with the sheer on the neckline, let’s calm down a bit there. This is a common design detail, so is everyone just copying everyone then?? The rest of the neckline was different. And if you then put the dresses side by side, every other aspect is different. But at least his dress wasn’t riddled with mistakes. Heck, the judges other top 2 pick even had a few, as Isaac & Georgina mentioned.


Sonjia’s look was not bridesmaid at all. It was definitely not safe and there was something intriguing about it. But to wear for bridesmaids, ummmmm, no. Perhaps a theme wedding, but not fitting next to a gorgeous, elegant Marchesa bridal gown. Sonjia focused on making her look sexy and with that, I kind of get a club-vibe.


This is not to say I wouldn’t wear it, but it just didn’t seem fitting for this occasion. But what I would do first here is nix the long-sleeves. I didn’t care for it with this dress.


The triangle back cut-out was a striking detail. But all the twisting details at the waist and it being belted, it was all a bit too much. I don’t think this belted aspect was needed.

Chi hair care shout-out, great top-knot bun!


Michelle was onto something here, but at the end of the day, she couldn’t execute it. There were so many mistakes, and really at this point in the game, that’s inexcusable. She still seemed to be excited about the dress as it came down the runway, which was baffling despite how sloppy this look was.


A designer should in no way, shape, or form be so excited about such a poorly executed look. It was so annoying listening to her all episode long about how she had this in the bag and she was so in love with her look. She definitely needed to be knocked off her high horse and is way overdue for a slice of humble pie. Heck, forget the slice, she should really eat the entire pie. I’m just not even sure if she got what the judges were saying though. I don’t see her taking critiques well.


There were some great details here. Even though I’m not a fan Michelle, I can still appreciate and see the good in her work. I really wish we could have seen this dress in a more resolved manner though. The sheer neckline and back were amazing. But the mistakes, I just can’t overlook with what Michelle was trying to do with this pattern. I can’t tell if I like it or if it looks too busy. Again, I wish we could have seen this without so many mistakes.


Fabio too had a great start, but execution got in the way. The lovely detailing on the shoulders was a great detail. But that is where the good ends here. The flaws really overwhelm this dress. But just like with Helen’s look, there was a disconnect here. The top & bottom didn’t seem to match vibe-wise. And overall, with this disconnect and so many mistakes, it took away from this dress reading bridesmaid.

Mary Kay shout-out, shimmery, bright beauty look — nude lip, lightly blush cheeks, & bold copper eye.


It’s so hard to get over the flaws here. It really makes the dress look cheap. Just as Georgina said, they couldn’t keep forgiving his shortcomings from week to week, and it was obviously time for him to go. But really the same mistakes being made over and over again prove that perhaps Fabio should have been eliminated weeks ago, giving someone else that 2nd chance. When a designer is saved over and over again, but doesn’t make a showing as to why they deserved their many 2nd chances, it kind of means the judges made the wrong decision.


QVC shout-out, love these bold metallic silver heels!

I will give Fabio one other nice comment, love this back, slightly open. But definitely not enough to save him this week and it was the right choice between he & Michelle.







PRAS Designers Are on a Runway to the Danger Zone!


Well so the runway was not quite a danger zone, at least for some of the designers. The danger zone was in fact the inspiration for this week’s challenge. The designers met Alyssa at the Skylight at Moynihan Station, which serves as a runway for many major designers.


Currently it’s under construction, leaving the designers with tons of construction related materials for their challenge. The designers were to create feminine looks from the masculine materials at the construction site. So yes, check mark for the cliche PR group challenge, and now it’s time to get another one out of the way, the unconventional materials challenge!


The designers had 15 minutes to gather the materials for their 1 day of work. As the horn blew everyone began crazily running about, grabbing as many materials as they could. PR often highlights who might be in danger of elimination for a given week. And this week we saw a somewhat Alexandria-centric episode, beginning with her intensity as she was gathering her materials. She was clearly not around to play nice!


Everyone was back to the workroom, which for this week can be rightfully dubbed as the “new danger zone”! The designers had traded in their sewing needles & machines for toolboxes filled with screwdrivers, glue guns, and wire cutters. Jay began ripping to part the tarp he was planning on using, driving some of the designers bananas! But a clear issue soon became about designers working with similar ideas/concepts, or with this week being all about unconventional materials, it was really the use of the same materials.


Earlier on, Ben & Justin feared their looks might be too similar as both would be working with zip ties. As we later saw, both wanting to use zip ties was where the similarities ended. But Chris & Dmitry passed a mere similarity fear with Chris straight up calling Dmitry a copycat! So Dmitry was working on a green garment, but was not loving it. We didn’t really see this, but he apparently went by Chris’s work station, and all of a sudden wanted to work with ropes, just as Chris was doing. I’m not sure why Dmitry wanting to use ropes makes him a copycat, materials were limited this week. And if Dmitry gathered ropes to use, why shouldn’t he be able to use them. Just as we saw with Ben & Justin, the looks could have ended up being distinct, but Chris decided to change his look up. More on this later, but for now, let’s get to some Zanna-time!


Zanna made it clear from the get-go, she didn’t care what materials the designers were using, she still wanted to see feminine and dreamy fashion forward looks. She thought a few of the looks were going in one wrong direction, Michelle — sporty, Alexandria — goth, and Kate — bridal. But only one designer actually went with a completely new direction, a new look, Sonjia.


It was soon time for the the model fittings, many of the designers poking fun at Alexandria’s crazy use of a wire for the bottom portion of her look. But no time for poking too much fun because the morning of the runway was quickly approaching, and as per PR usual, many designers were still frantically working away.


The guest judges this week were reality TV stars, Nicole “Snooki” Polizzi and Jenni “JWoww” Farley, as well as acclaimed fashion designer Elie Tahari. But wait, what was PRAS thinking this week — did we really need 6 judges?!? There were way too many cooks in the kitchen, way too many voices and styles in the mix. And what we were left with was a major lack of agreement on the top and bottom, and ultimately who should go home. I’m always intrigued by the unconventional challenges, just to see what looks the designers put down the runway made from these odd materials. I could definitely discuss a few other designs, but let’s stick to the judges’ “top” and “bottom.” The top made the most sense, not as much disagreement, so let’s begin there.


At first glance, Justin’s look this week did kind of take me back to his finale collection during his season on PR. He used a lot of white, the completely adorned dress of test tubes, and his work with 3-d fashion printing was clearly re-visited in this look. I don’t think this is a bad thing, but clearly this area, the use of non-traditional materials, is where Justin thrives, leaving him with a well-deserved win! His look came up short last week so I applauded his bouncing back so strongly. Regardless of a reminiscent type look, I was still intrigued and pleasantly surprised at how intricately crafted this look was. It was also positively shocking it was mainly made of zip ties.


Even though the judges, namely Isaac, found a way to nit-pick just a bit, I felt this look was the most well executed considering the unconventional materials being used. The black ombre into the white was beautifully done, very black swan-esque. I almost want to give a beauty shout-out for the make-up here, but it was a little too over-bronzed, or orange-y for my taste. But hair shout-out with Chi, love this chic up-do!


Jay was the other contender for the win this week. I think the main criticism came from Isaac over the use of nails to make this statement necklace. I didn’t love the sleeves as much as the judges did. For me, they were way too crinkly, just not showing the best craftsmanship. But we are dealing with tarp here, not fabric, so that aside, Jay did a commendable job this week. And caution aside, this necklace of nails was pretty eye-catching! I thought it was smart of him to mix textures, giving him an extra special element. A tarp dress with over-sized sleeves wouldn’t have been enough and it’s great Jay recognized that.


Snooki had a few interesting comments as she critiqued the various looks. I think she meant them as compliments, but they didn’t seem that way to me. Jay was the recipient of one such critique-pliment — “this reminds me of a dress made of garbage bags”? Apparently her & JWoww attempted a garbage bag dress, failing to do so as well as Jay did. Either way, great work from Jay & lots of shout-outs from me. Hair shout-out from Chi with this perfectly chosen structured ponytail. Make-up shout-out from Mary Kay, making use of more pops of blue and burnt orange, great bit of color on both the eye and the lip here respectively. And also, QVC shout-out, great way to coordinate more with burnt orange with these heels!


Kate rounded out the top 3, despite some slight criticism from Mr. Tahari. He thought the dress should have been longer, which is odd since all episode Kate’s goal was to steer away from being too bridal. Wouldn’t this dress, being longer, have been way more bridal than the shorter version?? Discussing this bridal point, I’m not sure why it’s such a big issue. Yes, this dress, I could see some bridal qualities. But last week, just because she made a white dress, doesn’t mean it was automatically bridal. If that’s the case, then I guess the white dress I own is bridal too right! Ahhhh, NO! I say get over it.


I think Kate landed in the top because Snooki might have been having some bridal fever. But a couple of other judges had some great comments to add. Even if Snooki’s scoring wasn’t the reason, I didn’t see this look being anywhere near the bottom. The bodice was intricately crafted and it was stunningly gorgeous. She was right in keeping the length shorter. Even though the top knot bun didn’t make this look any less bridal, I still loved it, so hair shout-out for Chi! But also Mary Kay shout-out, the more edgy, bolder eye worked here!


Chris landed in the bottom 3, but I am super excited he was in no real danger of going home since he was not in the bottom 2. I agree with the judges and am happy they were able to see Chris had more to offer. But Chris did mess up this week. He changed his design and it threw him off. I would say next time, if that were to happen again, just screw it. But here is why I am not so sure if that statement should be made. The top portion of Chris’s look this week, from my understanding, was what Chris was working on when the “copying” issue popped up. This is the part of the garment the judges took most issue with though. Because Chris decided to change up his design, this is how the skirt came about. The judges loved this. So I think Chris making the change actually helped him a bit this week.


But we wont’ know because Chris didn’t fully do what he wanted and that’s never best for any designer. What he ended up with, with this top & the bottom, it wasn’t harmonious. But a couple of shout-outs, QVC shout-out, love these black booties! A little too much on the Curly Sue-esque hair, but great, subtle beauty look, so make-up shout-out for Mary Kay!


Michelle was in the bottom 3 last week, but not the bottom 2. This week though, she barely escaped elimination, not only landing in the bottom 3 again, but actually the bottom 2. I’m shocked this wasn’t given more consideration. I think the judges rolled around the concept of this being a basic, safe dress, which sort of was an issue last week. Neither look had much going on design-wise to really stand-out. And bringing up the “safe” aspect, generally a designer who does too little goes home. That was not the case this week. I guess what really helped with Michelle staying was maybe the fact she won her season??


Michelle got one of Snooki’s critique-pliments, comparing this dress to duck tape. I actually thought the exact same thing and I know I didn’t mean that thought as a good thing! And one other perplexing thought for me on this look was why was there was no discussion on the chevron points, that of the same colors, being so way off, not meeting up properly. I’m not a designer, so I’m not sure what the proper terminology is, but I’m fairly certain on almost every other look I’ve ever seen on PR that had points meeting such as this, if they were off, even just the slightest, it was brought up. So why not here?? Also, what was Michelle doing with this model’s hair, trying to blind her so she couldn’t see the runway. It’s called a bang trim people!


I’m not the hugest Alexandria fan so her being eliminated didn’t bother me so much. But I hadn’t seen any dreaded drop crotch pants and I liked her look last week so I think she should have stayed this week. The wonky wiring on this look was crazy & not needed. I agree with the judges in that it was way too 80s, but I would just call that dated. It was also too costume-y. I think Alexandria would have benefited more from trying to do something with this wire on the neckline.


Poor JWoww tried her best to make a case for Alexandria, but she was never going to outweigh Isaac’s vote. And Isaac did not like this look at all, so I think that was what led to Alexandria’s elimination.

Can’t wait for next week, Wicked, good v evil, and showdowns!






Art Institute of NYC, Spring 2015 Student Show – What Wondrous Works!

The talented students of The Art Institute of NYC recently put on their Spring 2015 student show at MBFW, The Theatre at Lincoln Center. One of AI’s underlying missions is “Creativity for Life.” And with this amazing student presentation just put on, I’m positive these young designers will not be running out of creative design juices anytime soon! It’s great they are in an environment where their creative ideas can flourish.


There were 12 students who presented mini-capsule collections. Nearly 100 students lent a helping hand in making this show a reality. Let’s see what this bright dozen have in store for Spring 2015!

455079592.jpg_327_0_1670.28358209_3000      NASSIM SHADMANI

Black silk charmeuse & lambskin draped slip dress


Mauve double-faced charmeuse and black lambskin column dress


Black double-faced satin silk draped dress

455078134.jpg_327_0_1670.28358209_3000       ANGELO ROSA

Black lambskin studded tank dress with charcoal jersey & tulle skirt

455076960.jpg_327_0_1670.28358209_3000          455074034.jpg_327_0_1670.28358209_3000

455078788.jpg_327_0_1670.28358209_3000    FLAVIA NUNEZ

Designer also, Charles Anthony — Satin & faille triangle wrap dress



Off white & light aqua triangle dress


Off white & taupe tailored jacket with light aqua shorts

455078568.jpg_327_0_1670.28358209_3000     YOHANNA GURSEY

Two-toned orange jacquard chiffon pleated bubble dress with jeweled mesh bodice

455077494.jpg_327_0_1670.28358209_3000        455074392.jpg_327_0_1670.28358209_3000

gold jacquard and blush beaded clutch; Gold jacquard jacket with blush beaded mesh shell top & full length gold jacquard ball skirt

455078498.jpg_327_0_1670.28358209_3000      JOSE MEDINA

Metallic silver lame pant suit


Metallic deep V-neck peplum top with hot shorts


Champagne satin dress with pleated organza sleeves

455078308.jpg_312_0_1655.28358209_3000   JOSHUAN APONTE

Iridescent embossed patent leather bodice (sheer cutouts), with an indigo sheer pleated skirt evening gown


Pale salmon and turquoise jersey hip-picket dess


Taupe charmeuse and canvas trapeze dress

455078210.jpg_327_0_1670.28358209_3000     CECIL DOVE

Copper cropped jacket with black satin side pocket pants


Raw edge Petrol gauze & print crop top under olive zip front jacket & chartreuse satin lemon hot shorts


Gold sheer metallic top with stone satin & petrol gauze pants

455078768.jpg_326_0_1669.28358209_3000   KIBONEN NFI

Sequin trimmed printed crop top with contrast-hem full skirt in matching print


Black printed bow neck crop top with matching high-slit full-length skirt


Asymmetrical orange, mix printed tufted top with matching printed pant

455078384.jpg_327_0_1670.28358209_3000    NAREESA SHORTER

Lime green crop top with light lemon yellow asymmetrical circle skirt


Blue crochet duster over “Much Love” tee with lemon origami skirt


White jersey knit tube top with Jodhpur style pants & blue knit suspenders

455079244.jpg_327_0_1670.28358209_3000   TORY VAN THOMPSON

Black double knit jersey tee with black wool canvas crop pant with gray pleated overlay

455078602.jpg_327_0_1670.28358209_3000  MICHAEL TORNATO

White Canvas belted kimono with grey window pane joggers


White vinyl insert sweatshirt over long white zip front shirt with white cropped canvas trousers

455078460.jpg_327_0_1670.28358209_3000        LAVAN CHXEIDZE


Perforated black poplin and print dress


Shredded tank with long linen striped shirt over polka dot boxer with side kilt

Additional runway presentation details –







  • AI President – Jennifer Ramey
  • Dean of Academic Affairs – Dave Moughalian
  • Chair of Fashion Design – Amanda Lovell
  • Financial Services – Daniel Lorenzo & Roz Palmer
  • Nails – Jacqueline Saulsbery for INM Nails


  • Jurors – Victoria Nulman, Jacqueline Mallon, & Gita Omri
  • Models — Q Management, MSA Models, Adam Models, Major, & Identities
  • Shoes – Delman, Nina, Clarks, & Birkenstocks



Leanne Marshall Designs for the Modern Ethereal Woman


For NYFW, Leanne Marshall presented her S/S 2015 collection to an always welcoming crowd at Helen Mills Event Space. The theme was fairy tale-esque, very ethereal. I will always remember that a Leanne Marshall fashion show was the 1st one I ever attended at NYFW when I moved up to NYC 3 years ago. And each and every show I attend, it’s the same feeling, every piece that comes down the runway catches my attention and I am in awe!


From flowing sheer fabrics to structured shapely garments, each silhouette was feminine and soft, yet empowering. Leanne described the collection as being for “a very ethereal woman – someone you would find in the forest – but then she moves to a city and becomes a little more cosmopolitan and sophisticated. So, a cross between a woodland fairy and an urban woman.”


Detailed features of this collection were fabrics to create a delicate balance between free flowing movement & structure, so use of tulle and sheer organza.


Lots of sheer organza overlay!


Peach tulle & organza, providing for structure, but also ease of movement!


Leanne also incorporated the use of varying floral prints and fabrics, but manipulated them very gracefully to work with a vast array of styles and silhouettes.


Basics in black and white were used,


but there was also some lovely pops of color in mint green


and light, soft hues, such as tans, off-whites, creams.


But what’s always great about Leanne’s designs are her ability to replicate her signature aesthetic to work for a modern woman who is on the go. She really knows how to be and is a very versatile designer. Her looks can take you from day to night, from formal occasions to less formal ones. You can find separates, cocktail dresses, semi-formal looks, and full on eveningwear.


This is definitely one of my most favorite looks — sheer organza overlay, side cutouts, use of a dominant floral print as seen throughout this collection — the perfect fun, girly, flirty, feminine cocktail dress!



Hair & make-up were courtesy of Aveda.


Hair was done in a chic up-do.


While the make-up’s focus was to re-emphasize the ethereal look and almost give the models an alien-esque quality. The Aveda and design team worked tirelessly to pull off the exact look they wanted!


Leanne as fully amazed me yet again — such a creative mind, who sticks to her design aesthetic and makes clothes that all women would love to wear!












To Wear White or Not to Wear White?? — That is the Question!


 (featured bridal image — Marchesa)

Ahhhh, the ever-popular, age-old question, that is still heavily debated today — should you wear white to a wedding?!? Summertime is definitely “wedding season”! And thus, I’ve been asked/invited by to weigh in on this ongoing debate. is a one-stop shop for wedding planning. It’s a site where brides & grooms can search/find wedding ideas, hire people for their wedding, and make purchases. polled their own team of experienced wedding editors & more than 250,000 readers. Needless to say, there was not an agreed upon verdict. But here is Fashion Nexus’ take on this great debate — NO!! I do not think you should wear white to a wedding and it comes down to 2 simplified reasons.


(featured bridal image — Irina Shabayeva)

1) Do not detract attention from the bride — It’s the bride’s big day!!

From what I see, attending actual weddings & viewing bridal collections, white is most likely the color the bride will be in. It’s been a tradition for the longest time that no one else should then wear white to a wedding. Call it tradition, dress code etiquette, being respectful, but I still say don’t wear white. It’s not that someone is going to mistake you for the bride, but if the bride is the only one in white, plain & simple, she stands out.

It’s not likely a big deal if 1 or 2 guests happen to wear white. But think what would happen if this concept were to vanish. Twenty or thirty guests all of a sudden think it’s okay to wear white. It’s less likely the bride will still feel as special and be the focus on her big day.

The point is to not detract attention, right? If you are the only one, or 1 of 2 wearing white, people might start talking about it or the bride could become upset. This could all lead to unnecessary commotion and distractions from the event at hand — THE WEDDING! I would just say, why risk it? You don’t know who it might upset, a member of the wedding party, the bride, her family, etc. And you never know where or what these upset feelings and gossip might lead to.


(featured bridal image — Monique Lhuillier)

If you are enjoying checking out some of my featured bridal images, definitely visit’s bridal gowns’ page & see what they have featured!

There is really no need to take this risk, which leads me to my 2nd reason —

2) Logic — You don’t need to wear white. It’s not like it is your only option!

There are so many events and holidays which call for limits as to what you should wear, specifically the color schemes. For a funeral, you should wear black. For Valentine’s Day, you should wear red. For Christmas, you should wear red or green. Or for the 4th of July, you should wear red, white, or blue. You might be attending an event or a party where preselected colors have been chosen.


Bailey 44 tribal dress

But a wedding is completely different. It’s an event where color options are limitless with one bright line rule — DO NOT WEAR WHITE! And really it’s just all white that I feel is the essence of this rule. You could wear white as part of a print or if it’s not predominant in a color-blocked dress. But with all of the other color options and prints, there is no logical reason for someone to end up wearing a white dress. If you happen to have a white dress that you love, I’m sure there is another occasion on which you could wear that dress. If you are out shopping, it’s not like stores are packed to the brim with only white dresses — just pick something else!









Paper Crown lace dress


Do you need some other ideas of what to wear as a guest? If so, check out’s specific page, featuring dress options for wedding guest attendees.

**Exception to this Rule!!**


(featured image Elaya Vaughn Bridal)

With pretty much every rule, there is always an exception. I say you can wear white to a wedding if (a) the bride is not wearing white, or (b) you asked the bride and she said it was okay.

This is of course just my opinion, the Fashion Nexus take. But definitely let me know you think! Would you wear white? Why or why not?






Carol Hannah bridal


(Jenny Packham)


(Vera Wang bridal)










What’s Going on with Kate Pankoke for Elaya Vaughn?

headshotkate                                                                       PJRKPSo Kate Pankoke was a recent designer contestant on Lifetime’s hit show Project Runway. In fact, she was a contestant on both season 12 and season 11. I enjoyed both of her stints on the show. I was very much honored to see her final runway collection presented during MBFW this past September. Despite her not winning Project Runway, she will always be a winner in my book!

A few weeks ago I had the pleasure of speaking with Kate. She was such a delight. I’ve also enjoyed learning more about Kate through her work as creative director for Elaya Vaughn Bridal. I’m pleased to share more information about this stunning brand, it’s upcoming line for next year, and we can’t go without paying a bit of tribute to her standout moments on Project Runway. So here is the brand basics for Elaya Vaughn, and also a bit of background on Kate.

4dc50df70afdf148bd28fbf4d62e0e28                                elaya-vaughn-lovely-jeweled-empire-waist.previewThe brand was launched in 2010. As Kate describes the brand, “it’s more than a brand; Elaya Vaughn is an Experience.” She wants to make sure the wedding gown selected by her client, the whole process, down to the big day, is truly an unforgettable experience. She ensures that each gown consists of the highest quality of materials/embellishments, such as silk Swarovski crystals and metal coil boning. Kate’s strongest attributes play right in hand with her work for the brand.

As was seen on Project Runway and as can be seen from her work (images in this post), Kate is all about artful femininity — a true focus and commitment to fit for each woman’s figure. I could go on and on about how breathtaking her work is, how effortlessly the work appears, but that in reality each piece is consumed with very hard and detailed work. Rather, I am going let these images continue this story so enjoy!


A-line gown comprised of silk satin-faced organza with a tulle skirt overlay. The bodice & tulle skirt are trimmed in delicate Alencon-style lace appliques and a scalloped lace hem.

Elaya Vaughn | 2013 | Catalog                                                                                    Elaya Vaughn | 2013 | CatalogTHE AKIANA

Elaya Vaughn | 2013 | Catalog                                                                                    AkianaFA voluminous ball gown with tiers of silk satin-faced organza and with an asymmetric draped bodice that is accented at the waist by a grosgrain ribbon & beaded silk organza flower.

Elaya Vaughn | 2013 | Catalog                                                                                    Elaya Vaughn | 2013 | CatalogTHE ELLOISE

ElloiseB                                                                                            Ad1This is a ball gown of cascading tiers of gathered & pleated silk taffeta ruffles with sweetheart neckline accented by rhinestone edging. The waist also has a asymmetrical beaded rhinestone applique.

Elaya Vaughn | 2013 | Catalog                                                                                    Elaya Vaughn | 2013 | CatalogTHE JUNE

A-line gown with asymmetric draped strapless bodice, also with a silk satin-faced organza that overlays a floral print.

Elaya Vaughn | 2013 | Catalog                                                                                    Elaya Vaughn | 2013 | CatalogTHE GWEN

Alencon-style lace A-line gown with a neckline & hem trimmed in a delicate scallop. Also with tulle skirt overlay.

Elaya Vaughn | Carolina | 2013                                                                                    Elaya Vaughn | 2013 | CatalogTHE JORDYN

579682_445515482203162_1554397252_n                                      Elaya Vaughn | 2013 | CatalogStunning drop waist gown with corseted bodice comprised of silk duchess satin culminating to a voluminous tulle skirt

Elaya Vaughn | 2013 | Catalog                                                                                    JordynFTHE DAISY

Silk satin-faced organza mermaid gown with a seductive close-fit, a corseted bodice that hugs the body and is paired with a silk chiffon & silver beaded fringe shawl.

DaisyF                                                                                    Elaya Vaughn | 2013 | CatalogTHE ZOE

Strapless gown encrusted with Swarovski crystals with a gathered tulle skirt creating an A-line silhouette.

Elaya Vaughn | 2013 | Catalog                                                                                    Elaya Vaughn | 2013 | CatalogTHE DARLA

A romantic draped tulle gown with mermaid skirt that wraps asymmetrically

DarlaF                                                                                   DarlaB

Elaya Vaughn | 2013 | CatalogTHE MARIA

Detailed tulle ball gown with a pleated chiffon bodice overlapped by a draped tulle tank. There are 2 abstract beaded rhinestone appliques which accent the shoulder and then the waistline. The skirt has 3 asymmetrical tulle tiers.

Elaya Vaughn | 2013 | Catalog                                                                                    Elaya Vaughn | 2013 | CatalogTHE GISELLE

Silk taffeta drop waist gown with a neckline and applique on abstract bow, which is embellished with rhinestones. This is a trumpet skirt with a cascade of ruffled tiers.

Elaya Vaughn | 2013 | Catalog                                                                                    Elaya Vaughn | 2013 | CatalogTHE DAPHNIE

A-line gown with a silk charmeuse bodice accented by 2 rhinestone appliques & a lace-up back; also with silk satin-faced organza skirt.

Elaya Vaughn | 2013 | Catalog                                                                                    Elaya Vaughn | 2013 | CatalogTHE MARLO

Slinky silk charmeuse gown with silk chiffon accents and a wrapped tank bodice with sheer straps.

Elaya Vaughn | 2013 | Catalog                                                                                    Elaya Vaughn | 2013 | CatalogAnd to end, here are some great Project Runway memories. I can’t wait to see what is in store for Kate next — a future RTW line, more bridal, more eveningwear, the sky is the limit!!


KatePankoke-620x913                                                                    slide13-ytv-Project-Runway-Heidi-Dresses-08-Layana-Aguilar-Kate-Pankoke-jpg_010522


-project-runway--sea                -project-runway--sea2                   -project-runway--sea1MBFW COLLECTION

bd0HPNr                                                             Kate7


Kate10          PR1214-3565-900x1350          PR1214-3589-900x1350