HighBall Hijinks: Meet the Designers
Eight designers will compete in Saturday's Costume Couture Fashion Show, the ultimate spectacle in a weekend full of them. The quality and imagination of the designs will floor you. If there's just one HighBall event you can make, make it this one. Getting into the show is competitive. Meet the designers who made the cut:
Driscoll is a graduate of the Columbus College of Art and Design who started sewing when she was still a kid. Her self-titled clothing and accessories line puts an emphasis on leather and knits and joining the two in a tough-but-soft symphony.
HighBall vibe: Alexander McQueen dramatic
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Shiree Houf + Ashley Wills
These costume designers bring the drama of theatrical costume design to their HighBall shows, and they have the 2014 first-place award to show for it. Houf is a freelance costume designer, window display artist and stylist, and Wills is a freelance multimedia designer, stylist and blogger.
HighBall vibe: Futuristic
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If you've seen one of Virginia or Nina West's elaborate stage productions at Axis On High, you've probably seen Jones' work in action. The costume designer started designing for his alter ego, Gretta Goodbottom, and branched out from there. The term "vinyl phase" is in his vocabulary.
HighBall vibe: The '90s, as lived during Jones' childhood
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Ouayoro, a native of Ivory Coast in West Africa, runs her own label, Soley Design, in Cincinnati and is making her costume show debut. She loves to make evening gowns that make women feel beautiful and confident. And, not surprisingly, she loves to work with elegant fabrics-chiffon, satin-and to tailor them to a T.
HighBall vibe: A blend of water and autumn
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Juan Jose Saenz-Ferreyros
Saenz-Ferreyros recently moved to Columbus from Peru, where he's been a longtime pageant and fashion designer. (We think Nina West looks divine in one of his designs on this week's cover.) Saenz-Ferreyros has designed for Miss Colombia Universe, Miss Peru US and other celebrities, and he has runway show experience to boot.
HighBall vibe: "So many crystals, so many embroidery"
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Sohnly is still a student at CCAD with an interest in avant-garde and costume menswear, serigraphy and graphic design. He originally thought he'd want a career in medicine, but gave in to his love of costume instead.
HighBall vibe: Futuristic menswear, with a theatrical bent
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Lauren Primm + Ira V. Tecson
With Primm's background in fashion design and Tecson's background in sculpture, these two have complementary skills (and an awesome friendly rapport) and a track record of success at HighBall, placing in the top three in 2014. The two met while working at a local costume shop, where they were creating mascot parts together.
HighBall vibe: Fun, lighthearted, old-school costuming
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Walters is definitely the veteran of this year's crop of designers, with 20 years of design and sewing experience and multiple HighBall shows. His self-titled label makes stylish leather handbags and accessories, but his design experience runs the gamut from avant-garde (think a dress made of cellophane) to drag costuming to vintage-inspired. One common thread: His work always tells a story.
HighBall vibe: "Exactly like the place I'm gonna get: gold."