Wednesday, March 7, 2012

LA Fashion Week Designer Preview

Melissa Velia

Designer Melissa Velia began designing and sewing her Barbie dolls new wardrobes at the young age of 7.  After high school Melissa went on to attend FIDM in Los Angeles, CA.  Coming from humble beginnings, Melissa was force to work to pay for college. It was during that time at FIDM, that she began her career in the fashion industry when she began working for BCBG in their corporate showroom. Although Melissa dropped out of college to take that full time position, she went onto worked for several well-known brands and eventually designed for an LA-based clothing company, where her designs were worn by celebrities such as Tyra Banks, Hilary Duff and Faith Evans.   In the Fall of 2010, Melissa Velia launched her own labels M.Velia and Melissa Velia.  M.Velia, a ready to wear collection gives woman an affordable piece of high fashion for their everyday. It brings its unique feel of vintage inspiration, feminine glam and modern trends to the fashion world. While Melissa Velia, a designer collection is always inspired by past decades, giving each piece a little vintage sophistication. It's fine fabrics, feminine silhouettes and attention to detail is what makes this label a must have. Each piece is one of a kind in they are all designed and created by designer Melissa Velia herself.  Today Melissa Velia's collections are sold all around the world and continues to grow in popularity.  From press to a growing clientele, Melissa Velia is truly making her dreams come true one stitch at a time. 

Wen Guo for Boditecture

Boditecture is an architecture-inspired and convertible clothing line from San Francisco. Our brand focuses in producing elegant, distinctive and sophisticated convertible clothing for the confident women with a jet-set attitude today. We pride ourselves with an uncompromising commitment to developing innovative, original products combining clear concepts, quality and value.

Our clothes are made to be worn in different occasions in multiple styles by utilizing the many stylized option – it can be worn to the office during the day, then easily transformed into an eveningwear; or to an opera night as a full length gown, and converted into a miniskirt dress for the cocktail party. We also produce multi-way wearing scarves that can flatter your body and outfits in many different ways. Everything is design and made locally from San Francisco, with love and passion.

Trained as an architect from China and the US, Wen Guo has come a long way to become a fashion designer.  Raised in China, she designed and created her own skirts before the age of ten.  While her passion is in fashion, she unwillingly entered a business school following her parents' wishes.  However, after a year, she could no longer suppress her true desire to be more artistic, she sneaked away to University of Hong Kong and changed her major to Architecture as a compromise between art and business.  She continued her master architecture degree at UC Berkeley, then proceeded to work in world-renounced firm SOM and successfully became one of the top 1% youngest licensed architects in the States.  But she never forgot her little dream from her early days, eventually, in 2010, she quit her job and determined to become a successful fashion designer.

She started her own label Boditecture, an architecture-inspired fashion line, focusing on versatile garments.  As a starting point, the collection has drawn some local attentions – it was invited in several events including San Francisco Fashion Week, had a lot of publicity and very well received by the audience. Recently Boditecture was selected by European Union funded project for Top 100 US Independent Fashion Design brand.

Edita Bandaryan for Edita Collection

Edita Bandaryan is a Los Angeles based designer who has recently launched edita.collection. Born in Armenian, Edita moved to the United States at the age of three with her family. As a child she loved to sketch and design clothes for her dolls, which led her to discover her love for fashion and art.  It was then, at the age of 8, that she decided she would become a Fashion Designer. 

As a teenager her dream was to one day attend the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising (FIDM). Determined to make this dream come true; Edita joined by her cousin Armine, whom she considers a sister; made their first visit to the school. Edita knew right away that this was where she would attend school, and her dream came true when she was accepted right out of high school. She graduated with an AA in Fashion Design; however, decided that this was not enough. Edita went on to earn her MBA in Business Administration combining her knowledge of fashion and business. While attending school Edita spent several years working as a Visual Merchandiser and later worked in Retail Management. Though she had put fashion on hold while she attended business school, she never let go of her dream. 

In 2011 Edita decided that she was finally ready to make her dreams come true. With the support of her family, Edita left her retail career behind and began her career as a designer. Edita transformed all of her ideas into sketches and thus, edita.collection was born. With her first collection underway, Edita partnered with Vahe Ovasapyan, President of edita.collection. In early 2012 edita.collection was featured in Latin Newspaper “La Prensa De Los Angeles” before officially launching her line. Edita’s true dream of  showing her line will then come true as she launches her Fall/Winter collection at her first fashion show for Project Ethos. As this is a huge honor for Edita, she hopes that this is only the beginning. 

Edita.collection represents modern sophistication and elegance. Each piece is made with attention to the slightest detail. Edita believes in comfort as well as style, thus, her line is comprised of very fine silks, soft knits and elegant wovens. The color combinations are bold yet well-refined, giving the line a distinct flair. Edita.collection ensures quality and opulence, balancing the importance of both the look and feel of each piece, Edita is also a great believer of breaking rules and taking chances She strives to design pieces which are true to her and which represent her art. Edita,collection combines both modern fashion with classic pieces creating diversity within the line. Fashion is Edita’s canvas, which brings to life a world of imagination and beauty. 

Janean Johnson for JaJo Couture

JaJo Couture is an innovative women’s fashion label. The pieces designed and created are meant to make a statement, to empower the women’s body and personality. Fashion itself is a reflection of personality and taste that JaJo Couture takes to another level. The possibilities are limitless and JaJo Couture creates one of a kind exclusive garments, seasonal RTW lines, costuming and everything in between. She works with fabrics from vinyl, silk, and polyester and everything in between. Educated at the Academy of Art University in San Francisco California she is able to design, draft patterns and completely construct each piece. The love for fashion and art will never die.

Regina Marie for G. Marie

G.MARIE is an Eco-Friendly Women’sContemporary Clothing Line. I debuted my first collection and opened an online store in Fall 2009. 

G.MARIE reflects my Southern California upbringing; embracing the laid-back lifestyle with dresses, blouses, and jumpers. This Fashion Forward line is edgy, classic, with a ethereal/romantic feel. When you step out wearing G.MARIE, this trend-setting brand will encourage you to feel girlie and valiant all at once.

At G.MARIE we use 100% organic, natural, recyclable, and/or sustainable fabrics. I made the decision to use mostly sustainable fabrics while designing because it is great for the environment. It’s made with natural and renewable fibers without pesticides, and does not require much land or energy to provide. I wanted to create this eco-friendly line, without it looking “hippie” or “granola” it is still very contemporary, beautiful, and extremely fashionable. I feel that it shows that you can still be fashionable, even while decreasing your carbon footprint.

We are also sweatshop free, we are committed to designing, sampling and producing G.MARIE locally in Los Angeles, and we are passionate about giving back, and making a change not only in fashion, but in the world. As green becomes chic you can rest assured that at G.MARIE we are dedicated to giving you a product designed with a wisdom to make our world a better place.

The G.MARIE woman is full of ambition, and always on the go. She is never satisfied with being mainstream, a true bohemian, who's always looking for ways to prove herself through her own personal style!

GLAUDI by Johana Hernandez

At the young age of 19 Wall Street Journal, E! and Bravo recognized Johana Hernandez’s first collection and called her an innovative and unique designer. Since then she has designed collections for Hannah Montana, Jonas Brothers, Bon Jovi, and many more. Her collections were available worldwide at mass retailers such as Macy’s, Wal-Mart, Kohl’s and Target. Now at the age of 25 she has been the head designer for Seven7 jeans and Eli Tahari/ Tahari Jean.

In February 2011 Johana Hernandez launched her own collection, GLAUDI. GLAUDI is named after her mother Gladis and GLAUDI represents the modern style of todays successful woman. Since the launch of her collection GLAUDI has been featured in the Grammys and Billboard Awards, as well as Univision, CNN, Telemundo and many other television networks.

GLAUDI collection is inspired by her families hard work. As a child she accompanied her parents to the sweat shops they worked in over the weekends, where they were sewers for Gap and Guess. Because of this Johana appreciates all the hard work that goes into each garment as she has been raised in the fashion industry from the bottom up.

Through GLAUDI she wants everyone to know that no matter who or where you come from you can reach your dreams. Her collection GLAUDI also gives proceeds to her non profit Latinos Con Corazon. Latinos Con Corazon raises funds for children and elders suffering from poverty in Latin American Countries through fashion, music and art events. 

GLAUDI also has a celebrity clientele that has allowed her to create awareness of her foundation through their talents.


Ermelinda Manos

Born in Albania and raised in Athens, Greece, Las Vegas is where she completed her BA in Fashion Design. From the age of 19 she began from a dresser to styling the runways of Chanel, Teen Vogue, Giorgio Armani for the Oscars, Nordstrom's, Macy's and Miss Universe. After gaining experience and knowledge with styling, she decided to make her childhood dream as a fashion designer a reality and opened her woman's clothing line "Ermelinda Manos Designs". Every detail to create each garment is hand made by Ermelinda herself. The inspiration behind each collection is transferred into sketches, fabric sourcing, to handmade pattern-making and fine sewing to fit every woman's shape and form by accentuating the female body. Recently Ermelinda just provided her Holiday Collection designs for the celebrity gifting bags at the Golden Globes. Also started a new women’s clothing brand that has been picked up by few department chain stores internationally and is launching later this Fall.

Luis Mendoza & Yesica Medina for Luica

Lüica was established in 2011 by Luis Mendoza & Yesica Medina as a creative outlet for their love of fashion. By chance and with a little bit of luck, the duo found each other while attending fashion school in Los Angeles. Realizing they both had an affinity for by-gone era fashion as well as current trends, these two designers could not ignore that they were destined to collaborate and launch a Collection.

Luis has a love of the 60’s & 70’s chic aesthetic and Yesica has a love for feminine silhouettes reminiscent of the 40’s & 50’s. Together, these creative minds combined their individual styles to form the collection’s unique designs with delicate vintage touches. They have chosen Project Ethos as a launching pad to debut their Fall/Winter 2012 collection. The design team see’s Lüica evolving into a leading fashion house, providing Runway Eveningwear for those who seek a unique take on fashion and dare to stand out.

“A unique take on fashion for those who dare to stand out”

Catherine Furio for FURIO Apparel

FURIO is an independent ready-to-wear women’s line that is driven by innovation. FURIO Apparel values the craft of an artist’s hand and fashion as art. FURIO Apparel merges unique art forms, innovation, and cutting edge fashion to create apparel and accessories that caters to the lives, passions and creativity of individuals. FURIO embodies a sense of fashion forward and international reputation. FURIO strives to stimulate intelligent design by bringing fine art and education into fashion. FURIO is embraces an approach to high fashion that caters to the lives, passions, and creativity of people.

Danielle Pettee: Danielle the Dressmaker

I am your personal Dressmaker and I want to put ROMANCE in your wardrobe! I take pride in befriending my clients, making them dresses they feel beautiful in, getting them pretty, and going to their events to support. I work downtown San Francisco in a Showroom, in Union Square. I design and sew everything I make. I welcome anyone to pop in and say hi, get a custom dress designed, hang out, or check out my showroom any day. My clients range from all ages and sizes and consist of the Birthday girl, the socialite, event crasher, party goer, and every day woman! All my work is one of a kind and made just for the person buying it.

What I'm known for:

1. "Danielle the Dressmaker"
2. Custom one of a kind dresses!
3. 90% of my work is designed from recycled fabric
4. I hand dye all my own garments
5. Pockets in dresses!

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