Little black dresses came out in full force to the House of Blues last Wednesday evening for the 6th Annual Little Black Dress Designer (LBDD) competition presented by Audi Central Houston. Founded by Neal Hamil Agency Director Jeff Shell, the competition challenges design students to submit their version of the iconic LBD to win part of a $30,000 scholarship to the school of their choice. Designers submitted their portfolios in an open call at the Galleria, and applicants were narrowed down to the 10 finalists who were showcased at the event. Judges at the competition were comprised of leaders in Houston's fashion community, including Houstonia publisher Diane Caplan.
Setting the tone at the event were video clips of the designers describing the LBDD process and what the program means for each student. Art Institute student designer Daniel Amaya put it best when he said, “Little Black Dress Designer means, to me, opportunity.”
From sweater chic to draped and dapper, there was no shortage of ideas or talent. The winner of the competition was HCC’s Gabby Ong with her distinctive and refined sheath dress.
Though Ong won this past Wednesday, the competition isn’t over just yet. Every designer was paired with a local socialite to be their “muse.” They will transform their designs from “runway to her way,” recreating each look for his or her muse, with the help and support of established designers in the community like Chloe Dao and David Peck.
Click the slideshow below to see all the LBDs, plus some fun party pics.