- SXSW 2014
As the popularity of television’s “Project Runway” is still gaining strength after multiple seasons, the charismatic host, Tim Gunn, has taken over primetime with one simple phrase: “Make it work”.
Inspired by Austin’s “culture and diversity in fashion”, Gunn made an appearance on April 21st with fellow Liz Claiborne Inc. colleague, Leah Salak, to exhibit the Spring 2 and Summer 1 looks for Lucky Brand Jeans.
Held at the Macy’s court inside Barton Creek Mall, the unisex fashion show was open to the public, and featured a “Lucky You Runway Contest” as an opportunity for locals to walk alongside professional models, illustrating the retailer’s functionality of casual pieces as Gunn simultaneously offered styling tips and advice with each passing look.
Dominique DeVereaux Bedford heard about the event after her mother saw an advertisement in the Austin Chronicle. Bedford utilized the skills she learned by competing in Top Austin Model to secure a spot walking for Gunn.
“Doesn’t she look like a real model?” Gunn asked the crowd after Bedford showcased a printed scarf paired with skinny jeans, and a maroon crocheted sweater.
“It’s given me leverage to have more confidence”, said Bedford, who is looking forward to participating in the city’s own Fashion Week.
Gunn kept a light-hearted, humorous atmosphere; introducing a line-up of the latest styles, while stressing the importance of balancing silhouette, proportion, and fit.
In one example, a mother/ daughter duo modeled a floral blouse styled differently for age appropriateness. The mother wore a longer, sheer-sleeved version with the universally flattering boot-cut jean while her daughter wore the top with rolled sleeves, paired with magenta Capri’s, and accessorized with a vest. Further demonstrating this concept, Gunn stood side by side a male contest winner wearing the same colored denim (a noted trend for both men and women), to show the wearability of a tailored, slim jean.
In women’s wear, Maxi Dresses and Palazzo Pants were some highlights of the runway.
“Don’t be afraid to play with color,” said the style guru, urging petite shoppers to “be mindful of prints, [keeping] them small scale to not overwhelm your figure”.
And for curvier body types, Gunn suggests, “Think of yourself in thirds”, adding pieces like a jacket or belt as enhancements.
Looks for men included surfing styles in light, breathable fabrics.
Furthermore contributing to the show’s versatile fit concept, some female models wore a t-shirt or jeans respectively from the male fashion line.
“Customize and personalize so that [the clothes] fit you, said Gunn. “You’re not [going to] care what it is, or where [it] came from as long as you look great in it”.
Most of the outfits and accessories (with the exception of swimsuits) introduced on the runway are available in store now; see the Lucky Brand Jeans website for product details.
For more on Tim Gunn’s style tips, “Gunn's Golden Rules: Life's Little Lessons for Making It Work” is available for purchase here; and full episodes of Tim Gunn’s Guide to Style are available on Bravo’s website.
According to Gunn, a new season of Project Runway is scheduled to begin taping during the third week of June; for more information, please visit the my Lifetime website.