As a television presenter and fashion journalist, Roe hosts "Plain Jane," her makeover show which airs on MTV International. Each episode, Roe guides a shy "wallflower" through the daunting gauntlet of fashion, make-up and dating skills, and helps her overcome her biggest fears. The show currently airs in 66 countries around the globe.
Roe co-anchored ABC's live pre-Oscars show this past spring, and also co-hosted E! News' live coverage of the Royal Wedding. In addition, for the second year in a row, she anchored MTV International's red carpet coverage of the Movie Awards, VMA's and EMA's. Roe also fronts MTV's 'Bullied,' which is a national campaign to stop bullying in schools across the globe.
Roe currently pens a monthly style column for Men's Health and a travel column for Huffington Post. She designs a successful collection of shoes, jewelry and handbags for European retailer Stylistpick, and has a namesake clothing line for retail giant HSN.
Richie is a sensation on many fronts: from Creative Director of a global fashion business to actress as well as philanthropist and writer.
A native Californian, Richie was born and raised in Los Angeles. Surrounded by beautiful garb and costumes as a youngster, she developed an appreciation for fine fashion at an early age and in 2009, founded The Winter Kate | House of Harlow 1960 collection in partnership with Majestic Mills (apparel) and Modern Vintage (accessories). Following that, her premiere clothing collection, Winter Kate, launched globally in spring 2011, along with her premiere sunglasses collection under existing label House of Harlow 1960. House of Harlow 1960, which launched in 2008, also continues its successful jewelry and shoe collection.
Richie also spends much of her time working with The Richie-Madden Children's Foundation (RMCF). Launched in December 2007 in honor of the birth of Nicole Richie and Joel Madden's daughter, Harlow, The Richie-Madden Children Foundation provides meaningful opportunities to children around the world, while also striving to bring light and laughter into their lives through unique entertainment and special events.
Simpson has taken the music, fashion and entertainment industries by storm. As a talented artist with universal appeal, she has become an international star and media darling. Born and raised outside of Dallas, Texas, Simpson began her performing career by sharing the stage with famous gospel acts such as Kirk Franklin, God's Property and Ce Ce Winans.
Aside from Simpson's entertainment prowess, she enjoys tremendous success as a designer and businesswoman with her Jessica Simpson Collection. Launched in 2005, the collection has grown to include 24 product categories, such as footwear, handbags, denim, eyewear, lingerie, jewelry, outerwear, belts, luggage, ready-to-wear, and "tween." Simpson's first fragrance, "Fancy," launched in August of 2008 followed by "Fancy Nights" and "I Fancy You," with all three fragrances enjoying tremendous success.
She has also graced the covers of many high-profile magazines, such as Vanity Fair, Rolling Stone, Harper's Bazaar, Cosmopolitan, Glamour, GQ, Marie Claire, Allure, Elle and New York magazine. She also has been one of People's Most Beautiful People numerous times and was this year's Icon of the Year for Us Weekly Style.
Designer John Varvatos serves as celebrity mentor on "Fashion Star," NBC's reality competition series that will search for the next great brand.
Varvatos grew up in Detroit - the music melting pot of America - where Motown, rock & roll, blues, jazz, and punk melded together in an unforgettable period of music history. At an early age, Varvatos was exposed to defining musicians including The Who, Led Zeppelin, Detroit's own MC5, Alice Cooper, Bob Seger and The Stooges. The creative spirit, electricity and edginess intrinsic in the personal style of these rock â€˜n' roll icons inspired Varvatos at an early age, and influenced the evolution of his eclectic sensibility. This can be seen as a unifying theme in his design and it is deeply ingrained in every expression of his brand, including his famed 315 Bowery boutique in New York City, formerly the seminal underground music club CBGB's, where Varvatos pays tribute to the musical heritage of this legendary site. With this unique brand position that unites a rock n' roll sensibility and old world craftsmanship with modern innovation, Varvatos has become one of the most well-known menswear designers in the world.
Appel is a Los Angeles-based menswear and women's wear fashion designer. He has always had an eye for fashion and been around clothes his entire life. One of his first fashion memories is accompanying his mother on trips to California Mart to purchase samples as a kid.
Appel is a fashion industry veteran, having been in the industry for over 12 years. Fashion has always played a big role in Appel's life, but his interest in design was first overshadowed by his other love, soccer, which he played at UC Santa Cruz. After transferring to UC Santa Barbara to study economics and fine arts, he realized that the natural blend of his two interests and his eye for fashion screamed out clothing industry. Appel decided to revisit his passion for design and began painting jeans, printing shirts, and selling them to friends and stores.
After graduating, he went on to develop a non-woven outerwear fabric for Security Textile in addition to selling interlining garment products. He then started Blue Tattoo Denim, a men's and women's denim line which sold at major retailers, Bloomingdale's and Nordstrom, as well as in boutiques across the U.S. Following Blue Tattoo Denim, Appel began his work at the men's sportswear line Cohesive. Appel is the co-owner and designer of Cohesive, in addition to designing a private label for Kmart.
Arguello is a Milan-based fashion designer, born in the US to exiled parents, a Nicaraguan father and Cuban mother. Her family moved to Honduras when she was an infant, but she eventually returned to the U.S. to study marketing and French at Texas A&M University.
Arguello's fashion journey started directly after college graduation, when she moved to Paris to pursue a career in the field and landed a job at Emanuel Ungaro. To complete her training, she attended Marangoni Institute in Milan -were she currently lives and works- and earned a Master's degree in accessory design.
In 2008 the designer decided to combine her eclectic roots with her European experience and created the fashion brand Rosa Clandestino.
Rosa Clandestino marries the world of fashion and contemporary art, translating its collections into what Arguello describes as wearable art. Her love of art is cultivated through collaborations with selected artists from all over the world whose works become part of the collections, epitomizing utmost attention to details, couture tailoring, fabrics and style.
The first official recognition arrived in 2010: Arguello was chosen by Vogue Italia and Alta Roma as one of seven designers considered "Who's on Next" in the fashion industry. In 2011, Rosa Clandestino's dress and accessories were on display at the famous Milano Triennale Design Museum.
Famous Italian celebrities, renowned international magazines and journals - Vogue Italia, Vogue Latin America, WWD, Corriere della Sera, Elle Italia, Grazia, to name a few -, influential fashion bloggers and international TV networks have also appreciated Arguello's creativity and style.
Barroso is an Austin, Texas-based women's wear fashion designer for Crowned Bird, a French retroinspired women's apparel collection. Barroso was born to immigrant parents and raised in the suburbs of Dallas. Although her parents were complete opposites in many ways, they both shared a love for fashion. As a child of a bi-racial, immigrant family, Barroso felt her diversity gave her not only a strong perspective in terms of originality, but also an empathic nature towards people. Many of her ideas and dreams are reminiscent of her family's struggles to adapt to a world unknown. At 15, Barroso left home to pursue her dreams, and in turn severed ties with her father, whom she did not speak with for nine years. In 2003, she moved to San Francisco to pursue a career in industrial design, but after realizing there was no program that was suitable to her needs, she chose to study fashion design at the Art Institute of San Francisco. She later transferred with a scholarship to Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising, where she graduated with a degree in Fashion Design in 2007.
While in school, Barroso became a freelance stylist for Levi Strauss & Co., and went on to become a custom tailor in North Beach and work as a partner in an organic and sustainable dog apparel line.
Bell, a New York City-based women's wear fashion designer was born and raised in the small town of Florence, South Carolina, in the tradition of a true southern bell. The second of three girls, she was fortunate enough to have a mother and father who believed strongly in supporting and encouraging their daughters to find their passions and pursue their dreams. All throughout her youth, Bell was fascinated with fashion. Her love of Barbie prompted her to use her art skills to sketch designs and then take leftover fabric from her mother's sewing room and make her own Barbie clothes.
While attending college at the University of Alabama, Bell yearned for life in New York City and decided to spend her summers interning for designers Nanette Lepore and later Rebecca Taylor. After graduating with a degree in fashion design and studio art, Bell went back to New York City to extend her education at Parsons New School. Also while in New York, she worked as an assistant designer at Jones Apparel Group and then an assistant designer at Vineyard Vines. Bell soon began producing her own line on the side and partnered with then-roommate Jennifer Dixon to create Hunter Dixon. Meanwhile, Bell took a day job at a hedge fund while whipping up the collection in her spare time.
Vasquez and Gerson are Malibu-based women's wear fashion designers. Vasquez is originally from Modesto, Calif., and Gerson is a Malibu, Calif. native. Vasquez has always been a businessman at heart; as a kid he was called a "mover and shaker" as he went on to study law and dispute resolution at Pepperdine University. He, however, realized early on he had an undiscovered talent for fashion design when he joined forces with best friend, Garrett, to start Sjobeck. Gerson grew up learning the world of business from watching his parents rebuild their Malibu Ranch Corporation to success again after losing it in a tragic fire. Through their experiences he learned the value of a dollar and what hard work and perseverance can bring. He has always had a passion for painting, photography, and a great interest and passion in fashion design. Gerson's first project began when he was only 10 years old, helping design his family's company uniforms. He later attended UC Santa Cruz to study economics and business management. He also interned with Sheri Bodell and Ryan Roberts. Together, using their business and fashion expertise, Vasquez and Gerson joined forces to create this new and exciting partnership.
Hernandez, a Los Angeles-based women's wear fashion designer was born in Compton, California. To make ends meet her parents worked long hours sewing for brands like Guess, Calvin Klein and Gap at a sweatshop. After spending so much time in the sweatshop with them, Hernandez's passion for clothes and fashion design grew.
After graduating high school, Hernandez started college at the Fashion Institute of Design and Marketing (FIDM) and earned an Associate of Arts degree in Merchandise Product Development. At 19, she earned her first job as a head designer for the Bebina and Cappuccino Jeans collection and at 22 she became head designer of Seven7 Jeans, designing for all categories including plus size, and now has designed for Isaac Mizrahi Jeans, Eli Tahari, Hannah Montana, Bon Jovi, Disney and more. At age 24 she launched her own collection, GLAUDI by Johana Hernandez. Hernandez's collections (for both women and men) were and are available worldwide at mass retailers such as Macy's, Bloomingdales, Lane Bryant, Wal-Mart, Kohl's, TJ Maxx, Target and many more. Her custom designs are available via her website, glaudicollection.com. Her collection, GLAUDI, has a strong celebrity following. GLAUDI gowns have won best dressed at the Latin Grammys as worn by Latin pop star Paulina Rubio. Hernandez also designs for many celebrity tours.
Hobbins, a Canadian designer currently based in New York City, got her first taste of fashion design from her mother, who would create her own garments by hand. Hobbins would observe her mother sew together pieces and accompany her to fabric stores while she selected patterns and fabrics.
Hobbins most recently began designing her own unique contemporary line PROSE IV which has been sold at American Rag, RevolveClothing.com, EVA NY, and various boutiques nationwide. PROSE IV allows Hobbins to express her creativity, individuality, style, and talent. After studying psychology at the University of Alberta in Canada, Hobbins fled her small Canadian hometown of Edmonton for Los Angeles to begin an internship working with menswear at Orthodox Clothing. She would stay at Orthodox for 4 years, eventually growing to run the company with guidance from her established mentor, a former COO of James Perse and successful fashion industry consultant. Outgoing and driven, Hobbins relocated to New York to further her career and intense passion for design and fashion. Once there she worked for a variety of companies before landing a head sportswear designer position at Tahari ASL.
Tori-Nichel, originally from Michigan, is a New York-based women's wear fashion designer deemed "a designer to watch" by Forbes Online. Tori-Nichel has had a dream of being in fashion since she was a little girl. At 16 years old, she began taking classes with her fashion icon, Christiane McCormick, former Dior model, FIT graduate, and designer/professor at the Art Institute in Chicago. She taught Tori-Nichel the art of patternmaking, draping, and tailoring. McCormick also stressed the commitment and perseverance it would take for Tori-Nichel's fashion dreams to become a reality.
Tori-Nichel got her start at Dana Buchman after graduating from FIT in 1997 and Michigan State University in 1998. From there, she went on to join the team at Kenneth Cole New York and helped them launch their first line of women's sportswear. After four successful years at Kenneth Cole, Tori-Nichel moved to the colorful and quirky, contemporary brand Tibi. At Tibi, she led the company to an unprecedented two appearances at Seventh on Sixth Fashion Week. After years of crafting a business plan, for which she won awards, Tori-Nichel was finally ready to launch her self-titled collection, Tori Nichel, which can be purchased on eBay at http://stores.ebay.com/Tori-Nichel.
Perley, an Austin-based women's wear fashion designer was born and raised in Dallas, Texas. She began constructing and sketching garments as early as five years old and got her first sewing machine for Christmas when she was eight years old. At that time, she began making and selling items to friends and family. At the age of 10, she started collecting fashion magazines and predicting trends.
Perley is the owner and designer of "Pearl Southern Couture." She launched her Southern Inspired clothing line in May 2008. While living in Louisiana and studying Apparel Design at Louisiana State University (LSU), she was inspired by the rich culture, unique cities, and lifestyle of the people in the Southern United States. After graduation, she gained valuable experience while working in the buying department at Neiman Marcus in Dallas, and then interning for designer Charlotte Ronson in New York City. It wasn't until she had worked in the fashion industry for several years that she decided to start her own company in 2008. Her vision was to offer a clothing line that reflects the southern lifestyle, giving off a southern vibe with a modern and fresh look. The line consists of classic dresses, separates, and even men's ties -- pieces that range from casual to eveningwear, all produced in the USA.
Scott, a Los Angeles-based women's wear and menswear fashion designer was born to a poor family in Chicago. Despite difficulties, his father started a magazine distribution company the year he was born, and two years later his mother joined the company. Together, they built it into a successful business and after six years, his parents sold their company and moved to Nashville. After eight years in Nashville, the Scott family moved again to California. The California lifestyle really appealed to Scott and art and music became a huge part of his outlook on fashion. In 2001, Scott moved to San Francisco to finish college at San Francisco State University (SFSU). During his final year of college, Scott obtained an apprenticeship with one of the best design houses in San Francisco - Nice Collective. His first real job in the industry came when he worked his way up and became Nice Collective's design assistant. After a year, Rebecca Beeson hired Scott to launch her new men's collection, B.SON. From 2004 to 2008, Scott was in charge of all design, sales, and production for B.SON.
In 2008, the recession hit his family hard and everyone lost their job that year. Scott made one of the biggest decisions of his life - to launch his own brand and start his own fashion empire.
Silverstein, born in Reading, Pa., is a Brooklyn-based women's wear fashion designer. Silverstein has had the design bug since he was a young child. His family took notice of his talents and supported his dreams by providing him with sewing lessons and his very own full- scale sewing machine at the age of twelve. In the 8th grade, Silverstein found an opportunity to put his new found skills and equipment to use. Prepared with a stack of sketches, a budget, and a proposal, he approached his school to make the costumes for the upcoming musical. Silverstein ended up designing and creating 13 costumes for the play, on top of mastering the leading role. He continued making and designing costumes though high school and even received a Rising Star Student Achievement Award from the renowned Papermill Playhouse of New Jersey for his designs.
Silverstein began his formal fashion education at age 14 when he started taking Saturday Live courses at FIT. His talents were quickly noticed when the Dean of the program began to encourage the school to advance his training. Although qualified in design, Silverstein was not eligible due to his age and lack of a high school diploma. In response, he loaded up on courses and was accepted early to FIT in 2006 at 16.
Young, a Los Angeles-based women's wear and menswear fashion designer, was born and raised in Winchester, Ohio. Although he appreciates small town life, he quickly realized two very important things - one, he wanted to get out of there and make something of himself, and two, he was very different than the rest of the guys that he went to school with. He was always interested in fashion, but had to keep it a secret for fear of being made fun of.
For the past 10 years, Young has been a full-time fit model for some of the major design houses around Los Angeles including James Perse, Guess, Joe's Jeans, Hudson, Marna Ro and Paige Denim. He has had no formal education, training, or fancy degrees; just countless hours sitting in design rooms as a model, talking about clothes and fitting with well-established companies. Through fit modeling, he met some excellent designers and has always been asked about the fit and construction of the clothing, leading Young to become an expert when it came to drape, fit and function. After 10 years and working for over 70 different designers, patternmakers, and sales reps, Young had the opportunity to see all sides of the business in depth. He used all of this knowledge to develop his collection, titled Heirloom. .
"Fashion Star" launches its second season this spring featuring celebrity mentors Jessica Simpson, Nicole Richie and John Varvatos and fashion journalist and expert Louise Roe as host. Macy's and Saks Fifth Avenue return to the show, with specialty fashion retailer Express joining as the third buyer this season. "Fashion Star" will give 13 eager young designers the chance to win a multi-million dollar prize of launching their original collections in three of the nation's largest fashion retailers.
Each week, the contestants are given a challenge to design clothing with a certain look, feel and function. Working with their designated team, the mentors offer insight and advice to contestants as they design their creations, shop for materials and oversee the production of their garments. The culmination of their efforts comes with an exhilarating fashion show during which they display their work to the three buyers: Caprice Willard of Macy's, Terron E. Schaefer of Saks Fifth Avenue and Erika DeSalvatore of Express.
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