DailyCandy has a proclivity for surveying the best in emerging food, fashion, and fun and informing the masses. So it's no surprise the scout partnered with Suave Professionals to send NBC's first season of "Fashion Star" off in style. Amid coif makeovers, manicure stations, and chocolate galore, the site gave fans the chance to mingle with the show's three finalists and tune in to an exclusive screening where the winner of some prime retail real estate would be revealed.
(DailyCandy editor Lauren Lumsden, Fashion Star winner Kara Laricks, finalist Ronnie Escalante, finalist Nzimiro Oputa, Fashion Star contestant Orla Shani, DailyCandy editor Tiffany Davis)
"It's really exciting, I think, to see a show kind of emulating the same things that we've always loved about working at DailyCandy," said Tiffany Davis, DailyCandy's Everywhere Editor. "You find somebody that's really, really talented, and nobody knows about them, and then you tell the world about them. And then, the next day, they're a huge success." Lauren Lumsden, the site's video editor, added her take on curating the next big thing, "My favorite thing about working at DailyCandy is discovering these emerging designers and seeing them go from sewing on their grandmother's sewing machine to mass producing something."With a top prize of $6 million to produce retail-worthy collections for H&M, Saks Fifth Avenue, and Macy's, one of the evening's top three was prepped to bid adieu to grandma's design desk for good. While contestants Kara Laricks, Ronnie Escalante, and Nzimiro Oputa already knew who had taken home the win, they kept mum and gave us something to anticipate. To keep us sane, Oputa - one of the show's most charismatic personalities - chatted us up about being the competition's sole menswear designer."I was intimidated. [I thought] 'I'm not going to win this being the only menswear [designer].' But here I am, in the top three. It's definitely an honor." Oputa, who is inspired by the work of Michael Bastian, cited a comfort-and-confidence credo for dressing men and touted some of Hollywood's most dapper as his dream clients. "If I had to choose one celebrity that would be the face of my brand, it would be Justin Timberlake. I think he's an all-around, all-American guy. His style, his personality, his work ethic, his look, it's pretty much me, and it's pretty much who I design for." Rounding out his list are Pharrell Williams and Kanye West, whom Oputa says are experts in taking chances but still staying effortlessly cool.The queen of keeping her cool as the "Fashion Star" finale trudged on was Kara Laricks, who we later learned was crowned as the season one victor. Laricks, who was lauded for her contemporary and unconventional designs, was on-hand to finally divulge her "Fashion Star" glory. "The first thing I'm working on is getting to all three of those retailers in the morning. I cannot wait to go see my collection hanging in the stores. It's been a dream of mine for so very long and the chance to do it tomorrow is so overwhelming that it's all that I want to think about tonight."
And, in true "Fashion Star" style, Laricks' mass market, fast fashion, and luxury designs are available now for your sartorial pleasure. Check out her collections at Macy's, H&M, and Saks Fifth Avenue before they're gone.