Alyssa Nicole: Workshop To Runway

Alyssa Nicole is a unique, handcrafted line of contemporary womenswear created in San Francisco by designer Alyssa Casares. I met the lovely Alyssa at the Couture & Avant-Garde runway show during San Francisco Fashion Week and was immediately struck by the wearability of the pieces she sent down the runway. From striking pink-on-pink brocades to sweet capelets in classic silhouettes to stylish day dresses.

Luckily I got to spend a little time getting to know this designing wunderkind and have some fun facts to share!


[1.] Can you tell me about the inspiration behind your Fall 2013 collection? What where you trying to achieve?

For Fall 2013 I designed a collection with the idea of a glam girl turned country girl. I used bright bold prints in fuchsia and red and the silhouettes ranged from 1960s shift dresses to new look silhouettes for skirts. I was most inspired by color as well as weather in San Francisco, which influenced me to design long sleeve shift dresses and warm midi skirts.

[2.] How did you settle on the color scheme for this fun, bold collection? Are you a pink-wearing girl yourself?

Pink is my favorite color right now. I tend to wear pink almost every day, but that’s really just because my most recent collection is designed almost entirely out of shades of pink. I wasn’t set on a color story for this collection until I came across the fabrications, then I knew I absolutely had to have the bright wool jacquards in the line for fall.


[3.] Was San Francisco Fashion Week in September your first runway show?

I have shown my collection in San Francisco Fashion Week every year since 2010, so this year was my 4th year showing my collection.

[4.] Can you tell me a few things that surprised you about putting on a runway show? Was there anything that was really different from you imagined?

I have done about 15 runway shows since I began my line, from my experience I’ve learned to just expect the unexpected. You never know what can go wrong so I just try my best to be prepared.

[5.] How did you prepare for SFFW? Obviously lots of time & effort went into creating the clothing that we saw, but what else went on behind-the-scenes to put on such a beautiful show?

I designed a few new evening gowns specifically for the runway show, so I stayed up all night before the event rushing to finish the dresses. I was exhausted once the event was over, I was lucky enough to catch up on some much-needed sleep!


[6.] What was the best part of SFFW for you? The scariest?

The best part about SFFW is seeing my collection come to life on all the models. I had about 17 looks on the runway that night, and I’ve only seen them modeled a few at a time, so seeing the full collection on display is the best part for me.

The scariest part is when I have to go out after all the models on the runway and wave and smile at everyone. I get nervous because so many people are looking at me, but it wasn’t so bad this year because I saw so many familiar faces in the crowd!

{I have to interject here to say that I was sitting front & center and you could NOT tell she was nervous – She flashed a beautiful smile at the crowd and waved like a rockstar!}

[7.] I just loved your Fall 2013 video – What’s the story behind that? Did anything fun or unexpected happen while you were putting it together that my readers would love to hear?

We shot the video on a an abandoned historic farm, the video shoot went well, but driving back to the city after the shoot was the most adventure for the day. I got my whole team lost for an hour trying to drive back home and we didn’t have cell service so I couldn’t use Google maps to get us home!

I ended up getting lost on a really curvy 2 lane road then some of us got car sick – It was just incredibly frustrating. My whole team was exhausted and I felt so bad that I had gotten us lost after the long 8 hour shoot!


If you’re as enamored by Miss Alyssa as I am, you’ll be dying to get your hands on her limited edition pieces as soon as you can. You can shop them online here or if you’re in the Bay Area you can come out and shop some pieces on sale this weekend at FashionElles Boutique!

What’s YOUR favorite look here?


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