About Designers – Legends of the Runway
Seamlessly blending clean lines with a graphic, modern, and edgy-yet-approachable sensibility, Mila Hermanovski stands as a trailblazing costume and fashion designer based in Los Angeles. Garnering widespread acclaim as a finalist on Project Runway Season 7, Mila fulfilled her lifelong dream of launching a line of ready-to-wear, which enjoyed global success and adoration from retailers worldwide. However, after a triumphant 5-year run, she gracefully transitioned her focus to Costume Design for TV and film, a calling she embraced over 25 years ago in New York City. Armed with a BFA in Apparel Design from Rhode Island School of Design, Mila’s creative genius leaves an indelible mark on both the fashion and entertainment realms. When not immersed in captivating productions, she indulges in her passion projects, crafting luxurious modern patchwork pillows from upcycled cashmere sweaters in her beloved studio. Mila Hermanovski’s visionary artistry continues to redefine modern elegance, captivating hearts and minds with her unparalleled designs.
I love that having been on Project Runway was inspiring to so many people. Since I don’t currently have a clothing line, it’s a great opportunity to continue offering my designs to the public. I’m known for my use of black and white as well as geometric shapes and clean lines. For my debut collaboration with Johnathan Kayne, I wanted to create a gown that feels elevated and sharp and has my point of view. I’m hoping my design makes a woman feel elegant and confident, for any event. Shop Mila’s design here.
With a perfect fusion of sophistication, dark sensuality, and a rebellious punk rock pulse, Viktor Luna stands as an avant-garde design virtuoso, crafting creations for those who exude empowerment, elegance, and progressive style. Hailing from Guadalajara, Mexico, and nurtured by his skilled seamstress mother, who ignited his passion for fashion at a tender age, Viktor’s journey unfolded in Los Angeles, where he mastered theart of classic tailoring and construction. Fine-tuning his craft at the renowned Fashion Institute of Technology in New York City, he honed his talents with stints at prestigious houses like Zero Maria Cornejo, Valentino, and Burberry. Drawing inspiration from nature’s hidden wonders and his diverse background spanning the serene Mexican Riviera to the kinetic energy of New York City, Viktor Luna’s designs transcend conventional boundaries, capturing hearts worldwide. A luminary on both sides of the camera, Viktor’s photography expertise adds vivid prints to his designs, creating a mesmerizing fusion of art and fashion. Since returning to Los Angeles in 2016, he has continued to captivate the fashion world with his innovative collections and the unwavering spirit of his eponymous brand. His awe-inspiring journey has seen him showcase at Mercedes-Benz New York Fashion Week and El Paseo Fashion Week, while his trailblazing designs have graced the pages of leading publications like ELLE Mexico Magazine, French VOGUE Magazine, and the New York Times. Celebrities like Laverne Cox, Ciara, and Ruby Rose, among others, have donned his visionary creations, solidifying Viktor Luna’s position as a revolutionary force in the world of fashion expression. Shop Viktor’s design here.
Celebrating the vibrancy of her African roots, acclaimed fashion designer and stylist Korto Momolu (pronounced Cut • Toe – Mo •Mo • Lu) has carved an indelible mark in the global fashion scene with her forward-thinking women’s wear, exquisitelyblending traditional and luxury fabrics into breathtaking art. A graduate of the L’Academies des Couturiers Design Institute, Korto embarked on her illustrious journey in 2006, establishing her custom line and captivating audiences with her dynamic fusion of color and diverse styles on Bravo TV’s Project Runway, earning the coveted title of “fan favorite” and finishing as 1st runner-up. Her trailblazing success led to collaborations with esteemed brands like Dillard’s Incorporated and the Smithsonian, and being featured in the ‘Top 5 Designers to Watch’ during her debut at New York Fashion Week SS2009. A visionary with a heart of gold, Korto continues to inspire through her philanthropic endeavors while embracing sustainability in her SS20 line for Women Grow, incorporating eco-friendly fabrics like hemp and cork. Presently residing in Little Rock, Arkansas, with her loving family, Korto Momolu is an awe-inspiring force, leaving an enchanting legacy that transcends borders and celebrates cultural heritage. Shop Korto’s design here.
Embodying a relentless pursuit of sartorial excellence for more than 20 years, Nora Caliguri Pagel has etched her name as a trailblazing force inthe world of fashion. Nurturing her artistic aspirations at the prestigious Pratt Institute of Design, Nora’s journey was marked by accolades and top collection honors, setting the stage for her meteoric rise. A spontaneous decision to showcase her senior thesis pieces at Project Runway Season One launched her into the limelight, propelling her to global recognition. Embarking on an enriching journey around the world, Nora absorbed invaluable insights into business, sales, and management, collaborating with esteemed names across the industry. Her unparalleled creative prowess graces the shelves of Bergdorf Goodman, Nordstrom, and Bloomingdales, while her role as Creative Director of Authentic Lifestyle Products sees her shaping extraordinary collections for revered brands like Champion Athletics, C9, and Kendall and Kylie. Beyond her fashion accolades, Nora’s artistic soul finds expression through her captivating paintings, while her insatiable thirst for exploration fuels her globe-trotting adventures. A visionary fashion maven, Nora Caliguri Pagel’s legacy has reshaped the very essence of style, leaving an indelible mark on the ever-evolving landscape of fashion.
I was so happy to be able to collaborate with Johnathan in creating a piece for the “Legends of the Runway” collection. I always designed my own evening gowns but haven’t in a while so this was an amazing opportunity to get back to that kind of work again. My design was inspired by abstract linear curve paintings that I do on canvas. I wanted to translate it to fabric, by testing the boundaries of what trim could do to create those curves. I found beautiful trims that brought a sense of glamour to the dresses, and would be malleable enough to mold around the body’s curves. I’m really happy with the end product! Anyone from their first formal event to a red carpet can wear my design – I can see it for many different occasions. To me, the dresses are sophisticated and have the perfect balance of simplicity and embellishment. I hope the person wearing my dress will feel chic, artistic, and timeless. Shop Nora’s design here.
Kara Saun, the German-born creative titan, is the electrifying force behind Kara Saun LLC. The epitome of creative excellence and innovative spirit, stands as a beacon of inspiration in the fashion and entertainment world. She
reigns as the captivating Creative Director, Fashion, and Costume Designer renowned for her highly-stylized, music-driven projects that leave audiences spellbound. Famed as the Creative Consultant, Costume Designer and World Builder behind Disney Channel’s wildly successful, “Descendants” franchise, Kara Saun’s iconic wickedly whimsical designs have woven themselves into the very fabric of pop culture. Kara Saun’s career skyrocketed as a standout on Season 1 of “Project Runway,” followed by alegendary return in “Project Runway All-Stars” Season 20, as a moving tribute to her belovedmother, Barbara Anne Saunders.
Her designs, a perfect alchemy of whimsy and sophistication, have become synonymous with pop culture’s most iconic moments, having recently curated costumes for the Iconic Mexican Pop Group Rebelde’s world tour. Kara Saun’s mastery in costume design is set to breathe new life into Jane Austen’s beloved classic, “Sense & Sensibility,” set to be a visual feast for the audience.
At the core of Kara Saun’s mission is her non-profit, “The Fashion FairyGodmother,” dedicated to uplifting foster care youth and supporting the Non-Profit, “Kids in the Spotlight”. Her initiatives, include a transformative Halloween fashion show, immersive and customization day for houseless children, which has costumed 400 deserving kids, from Union Station Homeless Shelters, over the past 3 years.
Kara Saun’s impact in the fashion industry is profound and far-reaching. Her designs have graced global icons such as Zendaya, Heidi Klum, Dove Cameron, Zoe Saldana, Mary J. Blige, Snoop Dogg, Eve, Sofia Carson and Queen Latifah, just to name a few. Through her innovative work and philanthropic efforts, Kara Saun is not just creating trends; she is forging a legacy that melds style with substance, inspiring a generation to embrace fashion as a force for positive change. Shop Kara Saun’s design here.
Johnathan “Kayne” Gillaspie
Johnathan “Kayne” Gillaspie, an illustrious fashion virtuoso from Nashville, drew his initial inspiration from the glamorous personas of country music legends Dolly Parton and Reba McEntire. Excelling at the Fashion Institute of Technology, Kayne’s exceptional journey saw him mesmerize viewers on Project Runway Season 3 and subsequently introduce his distinguished dress and shoe collections. Adorned by luminaries like Jennifer Lopez and Dolly Parton, Kayne’s magical designs have graced the most prestigious red carpets, cementing his title as the esteemed “Red Carpet Designer of the South.” Moreover, his revered expertise as a fashion authority for Country Weekly, Zuus Country, and NStyle Countrycontinues to captivate hearts worldwide. Shop Johnathan “Kayne” Gillaspie’s design here.