Christian Siriano desires to democratise fashion
Christian Siriano will never go back to dressing It Girls.
The designer soared to stardom after winning Project Runway in 2008 and now counts celebrities such as Leslie Jones, Christina Hendricks and Sarah Hyland as fans.
To make his pieces accessible for everyone Christian teamed up with chain Payless, a discount retailer offering high-end items at a lower price, not long after he won the reality TV design competition.
Now providing to a wider customer base, the star can’t understand why some fashion designers make their creations out of reach.
“Once you see the customers who are so excited to buy your bag from Payless, you can’t go back to just designing for It Girls - you just can’t," he told Refinery29. “I like selling a few hundred million pairs of shoes, rather than excluding customers.
“(I think people are drawn to my Payless range because they) aspire to have a piece of my brand; they know we make fantasy evening clothes for women around the world, and that’s nice.”
Christian reasons that while he may not make the best clothes in the world, they look fabulous on women, which is what’s most important in driving sales.
Along with Payless, other stockists holding his pieces include Saks Fifth Avenue, Bergdorf Goodman and Neiman Marcus. But Christian admits that it took him some time to get his head around the idea that such big department store wanted to stock his line.
“We started at a place where the world knew me as a designer and as a brand,” he recalled of his reputation growing on the small screen. “People wanted products - and I had none. When I finished Project Runway and had my first collection, it was interesting having retailers want to buy the collection, because I didn’t really know how to go to market yet.”