theEvents: @OCFashionWeek with Godana Goga Gehlhausen @goga6945 @michealcostello

Written by Alex LaFosta
Photos and Video by Charles Fuoco

It was truly a joyous occasion. One cannot help but feel inspired entering an environment like the one Saturday night July 21st in Costa Mesa, CA at the Legendary Chuck Jones Center for Creativity. The night was all a part of the Orange County Fashion Week℠ Emerge –Experience – Expose: A series of events focused on discovering and showcasing new talent from Orange County and Los Angeles County fashion design schools. Each of the artists participating is competing for a chance to have their debut collection at the following Orange County Fashion Week shows and a summer internship with world famous designer Gordana Goga Gehlhausen from season 6 of Project Runway and all stars. 

The event was teeming with creative energy and why expect any less at an event hosted in a place named for the infamous animator/director, Chuck Jones. You can almost feel the creative energy coursing through the halls as prints, photos, drawings and paintings by Chuck Jones were displayed throughout the center. Kathleen Doonan-Largent, one of the judges for the fashion event, displaying her KD Luxe jewelry collections with EFX technology. 


We had an opportunity to catch up with Armilyn Nix, Public Relations of the OC Fashion Association, who was kind enough to give us a tour of the prestigious Chuck Jones Center where we ran into two of the judges for the event: Michael Costello, a very cheerful demeanor he seemed jubilant when talking about the event, mentioning that he always relishes seeing work from new artists. Stating because they tend to bring “something fresh to the table.” Considering that at age fifteen, he opened his own boutique in Palms, CA, it is a small wonder why he holds the work and drive of young artists in such high regard. He said that he was looking for an artist that “pushes the envelope.” 

Gordana Goga Gehlhausen, was looking for something different. She was basing her judgment of the artists on the “sellability” of each collection. Though the event is about the showcase of art, Gordana will be hiring the winner of the competition, so the ability of a designer to catch the eye of the consumer is paramount.

The designer collection to grace the stage included students Angela Wu, Adriana Diaz, Brenda Gonzalez, Michelle Parsadayan & Raquel van Daalen Wetters,  Kimberly Luu, Christy Pham, and Rosangela DaSilva. 

After all of the graduate designer’s concluded showing off their amazing designs, it was time for the point of every competition: The announcement of the winners! After a preview of student-based web series called “Dark Prophet” that gave the judges a moment to decide on a winner, the MC rightfully announced Angela Wu as the winner. Brenda Gonzalez placed second and Kimberly Luu came in third.


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