Los Angeles Fashion Week
Project Runway Designer John Sakalis’s LA Fashion Week Show Remembers Zelda Fitzgerald
With many designers showing subdued fall colors like eggplant and charcoal, Sakalis’s collection returned to a more vintage vibe with a traditional fall mix of tweeds, boucle, brown lace and nude jersey. He showed fitted dresses that were sophisticated and sleek.
Pictured: A John Sakalis nude jersey dress with dolmain sleeves, wide tie belt and contrasting collar trim from his March 24th LA Fashion Week show. (Photo: SHGFoto.com)
But the most surprising reveal of his collection was his inspiration. At the end of the show, he noted that his muse was Zelda Fitzgerald. Zelda, the talented, but alcoholic and later schziphrenic wife of writer F. Scott Fitzgerald. Zelda was the perhaps the quintessential Hollywood wife of her day, married to a more famous celebrity but longing to be acknowledged in her own right. If she were here today, I wonder if she would have her own fashion line. It’s fun to think about what might have been. She loved to design and the paper dolls she illustrated for her daughter with cut out clothes were amazing.
In the 1920s, Zelda Fitzgerald graced many magazine covers with her sense of style. Her distinctive blond bobbed hair, dropped waist dresses and sharp wit help define the flapper. Later, in the 1930s, her style became more refined and elegant as she adopted halter gowns, cowl neck tops, tailored dresses, and bias cut gowns for her rare evenings out with Scott. To me, it was Zelda’s 1930s style that John Sakalis captured and paid tribute to. He showed a gorgeous short dress, with brown lace around the neckline that I could see an updated Zelda wearing.When I asked John about being inspired by Zelda he said, ” Although she lead a very pained life, I tried to interpret who I thought she was, and make her a superstar today. The collection honors her memory. She was a strong woman. The collection should appeal to other strong powerful women with its 1930 style, drappiness and ease of wear.”
Pictured: A John Sakalis evening dress with halter tie and brown lace. (Photo: SHGFoto.com)
Although Mr. Sakalis’s collection featured some sheerness at the bustline, and would probably be best lined when it hits store racks, his fabric choices of silk nude jersey, lightweight lilac/ purple cashmeres and tweeds were impeccable. For him, its all about making women feel good in the clothes. He says, “I design clothes to bring out inner beauty, its about the feeling the clothes can give to make women feel beautiful.” I wish Zelda were alive to get that feeling. I think she would be pleased to be remembered by John Sakalis after struggling for so long to achieve her own artistic identity. Her style lives on in John Sakalis’s collection. The title of Zelda’s novel was “Save Me The Waltz.” Someone finally did.