3 posts tagged "Gigi Burris"
“There’s always a mixed response in emotion,” explained CFDA CEO Steven Kolb. “A few cried, a few screamed, and one brand was a bit too cool…they admitted that they were just shocked. But they’re so excited tonight.” Kolb was talking about his experience calling the 2014 CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund finalists to give them the good news yesterday morning, an honor that is reserved for him after he and the likes of Diane von Furstenberg, Marcus Wainwright and David Neville of Rag & Bone, Jenna Lyons, and others select the ten finalists for the year’s competition. Past winners include Altuzarra, Alexander Wang, Proenza Schouler, and last year’s Public School, who announced the ten new finalists last night at the still-under-construction Westfield World Trade Center (hard hats were given out as parting gifts).
“It’s been a hell of a year for us—we’re still riding it and we’re still excited from winning Vogue Fashion Fund last year,” Public School’s Maxwell Osborne told Style.com. “This is a whole new feeling for us, because we’re just so young and still trying to learn and grow ourselves and already passing off the torch. It feels really good—it means there’s going to be more of a future to come.”
That bright future includes finalists Paul Andrew; milliner Gigi Burris; Simon Miller’s Daniel Corrigan and Jake Sargent; Edie Parker’s Brett Heyman; Eva Fehren’s Eva Zuckerman; Wes Gordon; Tanya Taylor; Ryan Roche; Grey Ant’s Natalie Levy and Grant Krajecki; and Orley‘s Matthew Orley, Alex Orley, and Samantha Florence. Each brand will design a special runway collection under the advisement of the CFDA committee before the winner is selected on November 3.
The feeling among the group seemed to be one of anxious excitement. “It’s been a really long process, a long process of self-reflection,” said Alex Orley of Orley. “Today, we sort of were waiting with bated breath for a call, and Steven called us, and I think I just went white. I’m very excited—nervous, but just really excited.” Wes Gordon agreed: “So exciting! Steven called today and kind of tricked me a little bit—he said it like he was calling with bad news. It’s just such a thrill. I’m already so stressed and scared! In two weeks we have to do our big meeting with the judges. It’s like, ‘Boom! It’s here!’”
Though scads of new designers enter the ready-to-wear arena every year, it’s rare to come across a promising young milliner, which places Gigi Burris in a creative class of her own. After launching her namesake line in 2009, the New York-based hat maker quickly developed a following (and an impressive list of editorial credits) for her statement-making chapeaux that combine old-world techniques with contemporary finishes. Burris’ latest Spring lineup was inspired by “decayed art deco and the former glory of Miami Beach,” she told Style.com at a preview this week. Those ideas were most evident in pieces like a sculpted buckram sun hat trimmed with ostrich feathers as well as hand-painted turkey plume fascinators and chantilly lace turbans. On the more modern end of the spectrum, she showed edgy, asymmetric leather visors that resembled bird beaks and petite straw bibi featuring clean metallic hardware and the stripped-down spine of a feather. “I try to keep it from seeming too English or mature. My customers aren’t fussy old ladies or Alexander Wang girls, but the look is still downtown,” she said.
Gigi Burris is carried by select retailers including Collete, Kirna Zabete, and the Webster, and sold online at Moda Operandi. For more information, visit gigiburris.com.
If Gigi Burris has her way, soon enough, every street-style star (not just Anna Dello Russo) will be wearing her statement-making headgear. “Getting dressed used to mean planning out an outfit that was truly head-to-toe, and while today there’s more of an emphasis on casualness, I think there’s also a major resurgence in ladylike dressing,” Burris (pictured) tells Style.com. The 25-year-old up-and-comer first got into millinery while studying design at Parsons. “I was abroad in Paris and fell in love with the chapelleries there. When I came back to New York, I signed up for a hatmaking class, but they nearly canceled the course because there weren’t enough students interested, so I got my friends to sign up,” she said. “When I was creating my ready-to-wear collections for school, I always included hats because I thought the looks were incomplete without them, and eventually they became my focus.” Burris lucked out and found a mentor in couture milliner Leah Chalfen, who really invested time and effort in training Burris as an apprentice. “I love the old-world, romantic aspect to the craft,” she said, explaining how she draws inspirations from luxurious materials like felt, ostrich, and exotic skins (she even sources some of the gator skins from her family’s property in Florida).
Her latest collection was inspired by dead palm trees. Featuring straw boater, panama, and wide-brimmed hats as well as a “crown of thorns” made from leather cording, the lineup evokes “a sad beach vacation that you have really high hopes for and it ends up raining.” Burris has also been collaborating with NAHM on the label’s upcoming Spring ’13 collection and expanding her brisk made-to-order business (the base price for custom pieces is $700). “I really love doing custom pieces because the women that want funny hats are the kind of women you want to sit down and have a long conversation with,” Burris explained. “Just look at icons like Anna Piaggi and Isabella Blow (R.I.P.), who really paved the way for girls who want to get daring with their headgear. Now with the popularity of street-style blogs, you see that the girls who wear hats and know how to wear them well are definitely the ones getting attention.” Speaking of, we wouldn’t be surprised if we see more than a few of those Tommy Ton stars pop up next month wearing Burris numbers.