The Superstars of Project Runway

Michael Costello and five fellow all-star designers showcased their spring collections at Fashion Week El Paseo Palm Desert 2014.



The Super Stars of Project Runway

Photo by Gerry Maceda

Simmering anticipation for the Superstars of Project Runway came to a bubble on the evening of March 19 as current fashion’s leading “it” man and Coachella Valley darling Michael Costello brought five fellow alumni to share the runway under the Toscana Country Club Runway Tent in Palm Desert.

The buzz at the preceding reception was nothing short of spectacular as the eager audience sampled appetizers courtesy of Trio Restaurant of Palm Springs and readied for a night of glamour.

Opening to a full house, the impressive lineup that included Viktor Luna, Andy South (also known as Ariyaphon Southiphong), Helen Castillo, Uli Herzner, and Irina Shabayeva offered up haute couture originals and unveiled their latest collections for the spring season.

While the designers presented an assortment of pret-a-porter, cocktail, and bridal wear, the crowd ooh’d and aah’d over the elegant evening attire. Common attributes among the various and distinct designs gave tribute to polished retro styles and edgy structured tailoring. Translucent fabrics meshed with rich velvets, leather, and lace. Body-skimming silks shined from the stage. Dominating decorative details exploded with embroidery, embossing, beads, cutouts, sequins, and feathers. 

Costello opened the show with a filmed profile reminiscent of a Project Runway reality show real, introducing one of his two collections, MT Costello, a new collaboration with his cousin and business partner, Stephanie Costello.

Raising the level of beauty and sophistication, the MT Collection dramatically overtook the runway with gorgeous gowns in gothic, empire silhouettes with a hard rock edge. Black lace and velvet patterns united with deeper plums and red colors for a dark romantic perspective.  High collars juxtaposed with plunging necklines evoked an overall fee that was simultaneously feminine, and fierce.

Viktor Luna entertained with his forward-looking, punk rock–inspired exhibition combining primitive fringe, feather, and animal-print accents with leather, exposed zippers, embroidery, and military-style jackets to create a powerfully progressive statement for the avant-garde wild warrior.

Representing a modern, slightly futuristic approach to evening and ready-to wear, Andy South chose a simple, sophisticated monochromatic palette with elongated frames, departing from high contrast trends. Dolman sleeves, airy trapeze shapes, and draping fabrics impressed spectators.

In what seemed to pay homage to mid-modern chic and ladylike style, Helen Castillo put a contemporary spin on refined social attire. Featuring bold canary and cobalt colors as well as pastels in softer yellows and blues, her intricate craftsmanship was evident in the application of lace overlays and sheer paneling woven into constructed tulip forms.

Uli Herzner’s vision embraced otherworldly grace with delicately draped fabrics and ethereal earth tones. Shimmering lace skirts played well soft furs that seemed to move with just a touch. Soft metallics and bejeweled embellishments added to the affect.

Irina Shebayeva’s collection took flight with an aviation fantasy showcasing bird-like feathers and natural butterfly winged patterns. Exotic, brightly colored ball gowns thrilled, but a collective gasp was heard when a cloud of blue and white bridal dresses descended upon the runway.

Cheers erupted when Michael Costello returned to the stage to reflect his signature collection, inspired by New York in the winter, with a 1960s Valley of the Dolls vibe, for the finale. Sculptural arrangements with architectural elements were tastefully sharp and infused with Victorian overtures to define the feminine form. Guests rose to a standing ovation as Costello and fellow designers bid good night, and an exhilarated crowd departed raving about the show.


Michael CostelloMichael Costello

American couture fashion designer Michael Costello was born with talent. The father of two was only 14 years old when he made his first couture collection with Los Angeles’ Lipstick Productions...

Photos & Video »»


Helen CastilloHelen Castillo

Passionate for couture design particularly eveningwear, ready-to-wear, and bridal. Interned for Vivienne Westwood in the summer of 2011 in London, United Kingdom in the Sample Room/Design Studio...

Photos & Video »»


Uli HerznerUli Herzner

Germany-born Uli Herzner’s love for fashion began when she was a child. She began creating her own clothes at age 11. Best known for her colorful, bohemian resort wear collections...

Photos & Video »»


Viktor LunaViktor Luna

Viktor Luna’s path from Guadalahara to Los Angeles was just the first leg of the journey for the FIT trained designer who will, once again, be premiering a new collection during...

Photos & Video »»


Irina ShabayevaIrina Shabayeva

Designer Irina Shabayeva is quickly becoming a big name in fashion. Born in the Republic of Georgia and raised in Brooklyn, N.Y., Shabayeva graduated from Parsons School of Design...

Photos & Video »»


Ariyaphon SouthiphongAriyaphon Southiphong

A finalist on the eighth season of Project Runway, Ari Southiphong — formerly known as Andy South — has been trailblazing her career as a fashion designer and entrepreneur...

Photos & Video »»


 

Add your comment:
Edit Module
Desert Guide
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Related Articles

Soukie Modern Unveils Handcrafted Moroccan Home Goods at Pop-up Party

Los Angeles modeling head Kenya Knight has teamed up with co-founder Taib Lofti to preview Soukie Modern, the tandem's line of vintage Moroccan rugs, wedding blankets, pillows, and more at its Pop-up Party March 7 in Palm Springs.

Passion for Fashion

It’s that time of the year again, when Palm Desert transforms into an exciting fashion mecca, stormed by stylish shoppers, designers, and trendsetters.

(Not) Just Dandy

Born with impeccable style, fashionisto Patrick McDonald became famous when photographer Bill Cunningham began splashing photos of him across The New York Times Style pages.

Heavenly Creatures

Whimsical florals and feminine flair find a romantic fashion revival this spring.

A design discussion with Land Rover Design Director and Chief Creative Officer, Gerry McGovern

Land Rover Design Director and Chief Creative Officer, Gerry McGovern has a discussion about his designs during The Siva house VIP Signature House Tour Reception - Listen to this informative audio.
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Promotions + Contests

2014/15 Best of the Best

2014/15 Best of the Best

Palm Springs Life’s annual Best of the Best. Readers tell us who their choice is for the “Best of the Best” of the Coachella Valley in over 40 categories.
GuestLife Magical Monterey Bay Experience

GuestLife Magical Monterey Bay Experience

Pets on Parade 2015 Photo Contest

Pets on Parade 2015 Photo Contest

Enter your “Cutest Pet” photo in the Pets on Parade 2015 Photo Contest. Online users will be able to like the Cutest Pet photos from six (6) categories.
Cartoon Caption Contest

Cartoon Caption Contest

Each month, we provide a vintage 1950’s cartoon illustrated by Alice Rovinsky. You are invited to submit a caption or vote for your favorite caption.
Edit ModuleShow Tags