Fashion Story – NOLA Goes North for Fashion Prize

Tracee Dundas Fashion Editor @fashionablyyoursnola

Once upon a time in a city on the other side of the State of Louisiana a Fashion Designer Competition was held, where not one, not two, but four of the competing designers traveled north to Shreveport to showcase their collection and talent.

The event, Fashion Prize, originally known as Fashion Project made the transition in 2019 when it officially joined Prize Fest in 2019. A total of five designers were selected after almost a year of producing a collection of work, from initial design to the final runway with the help from a series of workshops, critiques, peer support, and mentorship with industry professionals. The designers competing were Jazzmyne Cry, Kristine Pichon, Frank Robertson, Marwan Pleasant, all from New Orleans and Samantha Viti, from Phoenix, Arizona.

Amongst the exceptional and talented designers, Frank Robertson stood out, catching the eye of the industry professionals and fashion aficionados alike. Robertson, an engineering technologist and sheet metal fabricator, is known for using unconventional materials like tarp, bike tires and vintage fabrics to redefine eco-conscious fashion as well as upcycling and repurposing. He is committed to sustainability and ethical practices. By using unconventional materials, he breathes new life into overlooked materials to create visually striking, innovative designs.

Frank’s creative process involves extensive research and collaboration with like-minded artists and organizations like bike shops, coffee shops and clothing mills. He takes pride in designing functional and durable handbags/garments that make bold fashion statements while representing responsible consumption. Through his designs, Frank aims to lead the way towards a conscious and ethically driven fashion landscape, inspiring others to embrace sustainability and ethical practices.

Robertson’s collection was noted for its “cohesive designs” with “well-executed craftsmanship.” The brand was described as a “functional luxury” collection with “mastery construction.” Naming Frank Robertson of H.I.M. Studios of New Orleans as the 2023 Fashion Prize Winner; taking home $2,500 made possible by title sponsor, Ark-La-Tex Dermatology. Viva la Fashion Prize!

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