Fashion Star picks Kara Laricks as it’s first winner

Fashion Star

Last night on the hit reality show Fashion Star three finalists competed to take home the title of being America’s first “Fashion Star”.   In the end the coveted title was awarded to Kara Laricks.

Former fourth-grade schoolteacher Kara Laricks always told her students to be true to themselves. Finally, she took her own advice and pursued a career in fashion. She designs androgynous clothing for men and women, inspired by her love of menswear and an avant-garde Japanese design aesthetic. Best known for her hoodie scarves and collar-and-ties, Laricks puts a spin on what is deemed traditional women’s fashion. She considers her partner Melissa to be her biggest supporter because she encouraged her to make fashion her full-time job.

Kara competed in the finale with Ronnie Escalante, who once interned with Chado Ralph Rucci and Zac Posen, and Nzimiro Oputa, a self-taught designer from Detroit.

Fashion Star

Fashion Star provided 14 contestants to compete with each other to create the best clothes and have them purchased by a buyer from one of three stores: Macy’s, Saks Fifth Avenue, and H&M.  Jessica Simpson, Nicole Richie and Luxury Designer John Varvatos mentored the contestants in each challenge. Following a runway presentation the designers would turn to face the judges to see if their designs would be bought. Representing the luxury side was Terron Schaefer, the buyer for Saks Fifth Avenue.  For moderate the judge was Caprice Willard from Macy’s Department Stores.  H&M was the budget chain store with buyer Nicole Christie.

For the final challenge the remaining three designers had to create a capsule collection of three pieces for each one of the retailers.  After a meeting between the mentors and the judges Kara Laricks was chosen having made a sale in 7 out of 10 episodes which resulted in $6,630,000 worth of sales between the three stores.

All of the 102 winning looks for Season One of Fashion Star on NBC can be found on Pinterest.  Many of last’s night designs from Kara can still be purchased online and in stores.

Week 10: The Winner’s Interview

 Do you think you have what it takes to be the next “Fashion Star”?  If so, visit to apply.

Photos by: Tyler Golden/NBC