Fashion Star!

Ken and I love us some reality TV. Like, all kinds.  My personal faves are The Biggest Loser, American Idol, and Survivor.  Ken is a huge fan of Top Chef, The Real Housewives (only Orange County, and Beverly Hills – not the others), and The Bachelor (don’t get us started on this season.. seriously).

What represents the perfect combination of this blog, Ken’s job, and our love of reality TV? …

For those of you who didn’t watch, Fashion Star is a new reality show that searches for the next big brand in fashion.  The show features host Elle Macpherson, and judges Jessica Simpson, Nicole Richie and John Varvatos.  14 designers compete for the chance to launch their collections at Saks, Macy’s, and H&M (each store has a buyer representing it… the Saks rep is Terron Schaefer, a good friend of the Natori Company.. holla!).  What’s even cooler: at the end of each episode, the winning designs of the show will be in stores immediately!

As you may know, I love lists, so below are my top 10 takeaways from Fashion Star.

1. Concept: Fashion Star definitely isn’t Project Runway, but that isn’t necessarily bad. Since the designs are going to be in stores right away, the looks have to be more commercial than runway.  While the designs definitely aren’t as showy, fashion is fashion and the show was still interesting.

2. Hotty: Elle MacPherson is the host.  She came to fame in the late 80’s when the “Sports Illustrated” Swimsuit Issue was a big deal, and she was always the featured model.  It is nearly 25 years later… and she looks like that!  Amazing.  Jealous.  Girl crush.

3. Chicken of the Sea No More: Jessica Simpson is honestly amazing. I watched Newlyweds a few years ago, and it sure seemed like she had jumped the shark with the famous Chicken of the Sea episode. Now she has a billion dollar apparel business.  A billion dollars! You go girl. Jealous. (But no girl crush.)

4. Favorite 1: OK.  On to the actual show.  I wasn’t necessarily overwhelmed by any of the designers, but one of my favorites was Nzimiro Oputa

The men’s looks he put out looked cool, and were more interesting/runway than the other presentations.  I was into the slim fit cuts.  Looked good.  I liked it.  Available now at H&M!

5. You Need a Strategic Consultant Part 1:

This guy used to be an Australian model, and became a designer.  He presented men’s motorcycle jacket looks, which no one liked.  When Jessica Simpson (who was a sweetheart all night, mind you) gave him constructive criticism, he basically told her that he could respect John Varvatos’ comments because he was a man, but couldn’t take advice from a woman about men’s clothing.  That led Elle MacPherson, who is also an Aussie, to tell him he was basically an embarrassment.  And he is a bad designer.  Nicholas- this did not go well for you.

6. Reality TV Aside 1: Can we talk about “The Bachelor” for a second?  Argh.  I kind of liked Ben during Ashley’s season, but this season literally gave me convulsions.  Ben and Courtney- you can have each other.  For the record, my fave was Emily, the PhD student/rapper, who went home way too early.  Ben- your loss.

7. Favorite 2: Nikki Poulos

My mother-in-law is Josie Natori, and Nikki’s flowy caftans reminded me to some degree of a Western version of the classic Natori caftan.  Cool accent too.  Available at!

8. You Need a Strategic Consultant Part 2:

Kara seems very talented and cool, but she decided to feature a tie/collar accessory look.  The problem was that her runway looks featured this accessory over other people’s clothes.  This did not go over well. She basically bought clothes and then threw her tie/collar thingy over them.  Kara- you got to be in it to win it!

9. 10 Minutes of Fame… Not Really: So, there are 14 contestants, and the show started with 2 designers being featured at a time. Each had a little personal vignette, followed by their full runway show, and then their feedback from the judges and buyers (interrupted by a commercial.. by my count, there were 27 commercial breaks during the hour-and-a half long show).  I thought each designer was going to get featured, but 3 basically totally got skipped with no love.  So, to the three designers who weren’t featured last night, don’t worry.. you are getting your pictures featured on the Josie Girl Blog!

10. Resolution:  Not surprisingly, the Australian model/designer/sexist who did not want advice from women on a show dominated by women got sent home.

What did you think of Fashion Star?  Are you going to keep watching?  Comments please!  It is late.  I am going to bed.

-Anika Yael Natori, aka, The Josie Girl

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  1. As far as horrible, cheesy trash TV goes, I thought it was EXCELLENT! That Saks participated in it is tragic…..Terron did a great job of maintaining dignity, though amidst the nightmare.

  2. I sadly missed it last night! Will have to tune in next week, thanks for the post!

    • Not a prob. Definitely let me know what you think of it next week (if and when you watch).

  3. Oh my God, that Australian guy was such a jerk. That was the worst reality show strategy I have ever seen (except for maybe, “The Mask” on The Bachelor). I LOVE how Elle put him in his place. I didn’t love the show, but I will watch next week. Are you going to review that too?

  4. I missed it! Will be sure to watch next week! As for the Bachelor- I am with you! Ben is a dud and Courtney was horrific! We had a Bachelor pool at my house (to make things interesting for the men!). Emily was my pick too! She is LUCKY she got out of there!

    • Ben drove me absolutely bonkers. I COULDN’T watch it — he just bugged me out too much. His hair, his personality, his comments, BLAH! gross! Emily is way too cute and good for him!

  5. That show was good, not great. Enjoyed your post more than I enjoyed watching it! But I will probably tune in next week… I think the guy with the bow tie is out next. And the really short, full of energy guy bugged.

    • 🙂 Thank you! I had mixed feelings about a lot of the aspects of the show, too, but definitely want to see where it is headed!

  6. The actual designs and the designers were nothing to write home about. I actually liked Jessica Simpson and Nicole Richie- I wasn’t expecting to! Best judge was the Saks guy. He seems like a cool dude!

  7. Bummer! I missed the first episode but can’t wait to watch it. Thanks for your review… you got me excited!

    • Thank you! Watch on hulu. Definitely worth watching a couple of times, I think!

  8. Show was OK. Will give it a B. The whole introduction was a little weird, and the way the music was played made it feel like more of a rock concert. Would like to know more about the people behind the designs, but maybe that will come later.

    • The intro was TOTALLY wacked. It was like a Victoria Secret runway show — very peculiar. And contrived being live….but I enjoyed it! Definitely agree that knowing more behind the scenes would connect the viewers more with the pieces!

  9. … Loved the concept – loved the star comments – loved the fashion show and availability of the clothes – can’t wait for episode 2 …

    • Concept is brilliant! And stars comments were great too — all likeable people!

  10. I’m not a big reality show watcher but I Saw the show last night and thought it was good. I think it can grow on me. I agree with liking Nzimiro and his sports coats….stylish and trendy for men’s fashion. I was surprised to see Saks on there but they can lend a lot of credibility to the show.

    • Definitely surprised to see Saks as well, but think it will drive business for them!

  11. I enjoyed the show. I did not like the comment that the guy made about women. The short guy was more of a comedian that a designer

  12. I love fashion! Great!
    B Precision Plus Permanent Makeup & Training located at The Brownstone Village Shoppes in Arlington,TX. 76013

    Is the reason for my interest in any fashion /clothes,face or permanent makeup.

  13. I watched the show I will give it a C. It was little disoganized because you had to figure oit how the show were featuring the designers. Its a shame there 3 designers not shown and the short hispanic got so much attention (all about ratings). Considering watching next week????

    • Definitely going to watch next week — it might become my next American Idol. And you? do you think you will watch? The show definitely was inventive and original, but totally all over the place!

  14. Sorry but I liked the Australian Nicholas’ jackets and Nicole Richie as a judge is getting to the bottom of the barrel. Couldn’t NBC find a real designer out there with some credibility? Either Kara or the guy with the hat fetish with his cheap looking hooker dresses should have gone home last night. I’d rather have a rude guy with talent stay than those two who have next to ZERO chance of winning the competition.

    • I loooooooove Nicole Richie — she is so stylish and hip in my book. And although Nicole and Jessica are not “true” designers, they both have created a huge brand for their name!

  15. I liked the show but kind of thought there was no build-up! I found it odd that they show a blip of the designers background, hardly any footage of them actually making the clothes then they go directly to the buyers. It seems like the buyers would be further into the show and that they would build up to that. To me it was like if American Idol had very little audition footage then a short snipet of footage of the contestents in Hollywood then going straight to Americas Vote. I love the idea of the clothes being available the next day but when I heard the promo my thought was that it would be the winners line of clothes that would be available the next day after they had won the show.

    • I hear what you have to say. I definitely think having more of the designers background would connect the audience more to them….and help promote the show more. Maybe in the upcoming episodes?

  16. It wasn’t a surprise that the Aussie went home on Fashion Star. Had he not been soo arrogant and a know-it- all, he might have had a second opportunity.
    Oscar, on the other hand, is positioned to become a possible front runner if only he can turn OFF the waterworks and sad story and just DESIGN!

    • I am not sure I would say it is better than Project Runway. I love me some Heidi Klum and Tim Gunn….but definitely entertaining and imaginative (in terms of format, not clothes).

  17. Loved Loved Loved it because people were so candid and straight forward. I don’t know if Nicole Ritchie and Jessica Simpson would be my choice for fashion icons but I like their criticism and they take it serious. This is a great opportunity for the designer. Even if they don’t win the show they still have a chance to get a break and I think this is awesome!

    • I agree — Jessica Simpson is not my fashion icon — but she has created a brand for herself which is amazing…. I agree, just the chance to show your work on national tv is quite the accomplishment.

  18. My husband and I love and watch Project Runway faithfully. So I watched wanting to hate this “RIPOFF” show. But I LOVE IT! It wasn’t at all like Project Runway and in a way made more sense than Project. Ready to wear clothes that we the audeince can wear! I really enjoyed the show, and agreed with the judges who they sent home. Very fast paced but easy to follow. I too am a realities show junkie so I enjoy another on the band wagon, afterall I have Tivo. Barb

    • DVR changes your life, especially with reality tv because it makes it so quick and easy to watch.

  19. I have no clue whatsoever as to why Jessica Simpson is a judge on this show…or any fashion show.
    most people I know do not take her seriously and listening to her, one can see why. She comes off as the epitome of a dumb blonde. I don’t see this show lasting long.

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