Fashion Group International of Dallas anointed Lela Orr as an emerging fashion talent on Tuesday evening during its annual Rising Star Awards, which were held at the Statler Hotel.
“I’m just kind of shocked,” said Orr, a Dallas native who operates her business there. “Winning in your hometown means something special.”
Orr got national exposure in the U.S. last spring during her turn on “Project Runway,” where she placed eighth. The publicity enabled her to expand beyond custom clothing into producing a small collection called Ferrah, she said.
Focused on sustainability, Ferrah offers upscale contemporary sportswear fabricated of natural materials and dyes.
“We’ve quadruped our growth as of last year, and we’re opening a storefront on Earth Day,” Orr said. “It’s kind of a test — our first storefront.” Called Sept: Sustainable Designer Collective, the shop at Trinity Groves will present clothing and accessories from a rotating cast of eco-conscious designers, including fellow “Project Runway” alum Venny Etienne and contestant Brittany Allen.
“The goal is to have seven sustainable designers hanging or displaying at a time,” Orr explained.
The FGI Dallas Rising Star Awards also honored fine jewelers Barbara Kaiser Harvel and Stephanie Harvel of Kaiser Atelier for accessories; Matt Alexander, proprietor of Neighborhood Goods, for retail; makeup artist Marsi Hubbard of Brite Bar Beauty for beauty; Lea Fisher for art and design, and Samantha Stewart of Style of Sam for fashion blogging.
“It’s great to honor the creatives in the fashion industry here in Dallas, but it’s also important to support them financially,” said FGI Dallas regional codirector Holly Quartaro. “We want them to be successful, so this gives them an opportunity to put their brand in front of FGI membership and the attendees who are also interested in fashion and be able to sell. For any entrepreneur, that’s the bottom line.”