We all loved the strong, professional, and immensely talented Kara Saun from the time she took up residence at her workstation at Parsons The New School for Design on Bravo Network’s Emmy-nominated series Project Runway. And things haven’t slowed down since we last laid eyes on her and her scene-stealing collection during the season one finale at Bryant Park. The LA-based designer sat down with Clutch to talk fashion, faith, and what you can expect from her in the future.
Clutch: So tell us . . . what you have been up to since wrapping Project Runway?
Project Runway was amazing exposure; afterwards I was inundated with offers. I’m currently creating my next “Red Carpet” collection, costume designing the MTV series “Celebrity Rap Superstar”, appearing as a Fashion Expert on various shows on “E,” Style Network, Bravo, and the TV Guide Channels, and I’m a National Spokeswoman for Allergan Products. I’ve also really enjoyed traveling the country as an inspirational guest speaker on behalf of various Health Awareness Campaigns and Non-profit organizations, such as Susan G. Komen’s Pink Ribbon, The Girl Scouts, and numerous dog charities.
Immediately after my run on Project Runway, I designed numerous cocktail and evening gowns for Heidi Klum, I was at the helm as Costume Designer for the WB series What I Like About You, starring Amanda Bynes and Jennie Garth. I designed for America’s Next Top Model Campaign 5 advertisement as well as costume designing for various TV Series and pilots, such as UPN’s R U the Girl and the ABC hit Notes From the Underbelly. I also unveiled “2056” my second collection at LA Mercedes Benz Fashion Week in Fall 2006, which went on to sell to exclusive high-end boutiques across the country.
Clutch: Did you watch season two?
You know, I’m very supportive of all the Project Runway’s, but my schedule has left me little time to watch a lot of TV, I’ve seen all the highlights though and think the show continues to give a lot of very talented designers, much needed exposure.
Clutch: Who are some of your style influences?
I’m really inspired or influenced by different things, it could be a great song, a beautiful fabric, the beauty of a long drive by the ocean or mountains or a great shoe.
Clutch: You’ve designed (and styled) for some of Hollywood’s biggest names—including Queen Latifah, Eve, and Eddie Murphy to name a few. Is there anyone in particular that you’d like to work with that you haven’t already?
Most definitely, I would love to design a beautiful shimmering Red Carpet Gown for Ms. Oprah Winfrey.
Clutch: Working New York Fashion Week has to be a test of nerves, we’re sure. What are some of the thoughts running through your head right before your first model hits the runway?
You know it’s really more exciting than nerve racking. There’s a lot of prayers, I love to look at all the models as they are about to make their entrance on the stage with hair, make-up and your designs and you think about all the months of work you’ve put into it and it leads to this moment. It’s an amazing feeling, and then I think, “Please don’t trip in my gown.”
Clutch: How would you describe your personal style?
My personal style goes through changes depending on what project I’m working. On the red carpet I like to be classic, but modern and sophisticated. If I’m costume designing on a movie that I’m out in the dessert or on a stage all day, I’m stylish, but it has to be comfortable.
Clutch: Tell us a little bit about your upcoming collection (tone, inspiration, etc.).
I’m currently working on it, so stay tuned.
Clutch: We hear you were once in the U.S. Air Force; that’s quite a change from the fashion scene. How did you make the transition?
That is actually a huge misconception; I’m an Air Force Brat. My dad was in the Air Force, so I was born in Germany and we traveled all over the world, which was really fun. It’s also where I pull a great deal of my inspiration as well.
Clutch: It seems like the music and fashion industries are always colliding. So, who are you listening to on your iPod right now?
I listen to a mix of music; a lot of alternative. I’m looking forward to hearing what Eve drops.
Clutch: What can we look forward to from Kara Saun in the future?
Some very exciting things—inspiring people to have faith, faith in themselves, faith in their chosen career and talents, and faith in God; costume designing films from various periods in time; designing high-end, but more affordable line for all women; continuing to speak on behalf of various causes; and more on-air appearances as a fashion expert.