'Project Runway' Q&A: Viktor Luna

In Style

Seven “Project Runway” stars will gather in St. Louis for Saint Louis Fashion Week on September 28. Meet Viktor Luna, who will show his collection in the show at Fox Theater.

Viktor Luna
Season 9

Age: 32
Current Location: New York City
Website: viktorluna.com

viktorluna

Your “Project Runway” experience in 75 words or less. My experience on “Project Runway” was an emotional roller coaster with so many happy turns and hard drops. Ultimately, I was thrilled for the success I’ve gained after the show; it opened so many doors. It really helped me discover who I am and who I wanted to be, which I am very grateful for.

Where has your career gone since “Project Runway?” I now travel more across the country, either to charity events, universities or fashion shows. I have more personal clientele and it’s always been my dream to have my own business and create custom outfits with that one-on-one contact. I work with Style PR in Los Angeles, and they help me bring my work out there to celebrities such as Carly Rae Jepsen, Ciara and Ashanti.

Describe your design aesthetic. I tend to experiment from season to season but I definitely try to stay true to my aesthetic. I definitely target that rock ‘n’ roll fan who loves to take risks and at the same time enjoys what they wear. They can go downtown to party and then head uptown to look elegant for whatever event.

What makes your style stand out from the rest? What separates me from other designers is my use of unique prints that I photograph. When I don’t use my own prints, I try to use unique techniques that are signature to me, whether it’s in the silhouette or in the detailing.

What/who inspires you? I find inspiration in people, the streets, nature, photography and, overall, life. Someone who inspires me is Cristóbal Balenciaga. I admire the way he stood for his vision and was recognized for his work.

What are you working on currently? We’re working on my new collection, which involves using unconventional yet wearable materials. What I’m excited about most is working with my unique prints and the leather accessories I’m introducing this season.

Where is your line headed next? It usually heads to our showroom in Los Angeles for celebrities and stylists. But I hope to one day mass-produce and have a broader audience.

When you hit a creative block, what do you do to get the juices flowing? I take a break, go to the museum and I travel. Whenever you’re stuck, that’s your mind trying to tell you to take time off and enjoy life.

Your favorite look for going out. I have many looks that are my favorite but they always consist of one of my staple bow ties and a great sports coat.

Your favorite look for staying in. I wear t-shirts at home, mainly my, “I ‘mwah’ Manila” shirt or some McQueen. These looks are always paired with my boat shoes.

Fashion trend you’re sick of. Ugg Boots, leggings, crocs and platform heels. Pointed toes are more chic. Think Fifth Avenue. It’s the year of Manolo Blahnik, ladies!

Whose fall lines do you find most exciting? I used to be very excited for fashion collections, and then to see them in stores. Now all I see is a big “C,” which stands for commercial. In the ’80s and ’90s, it was more experimental rather than pleasing the mass audience. Since McQueen’s death, I feel like we switched to commercial and limited ourselves to whether it will sell to department stores. I’m no longer excited—I just view for pleasure.

The one accessory every woman needs right now. A Hermes Collier de Chien. It’s a super-chic studded bracelet that goes with any and everything!

The one accessory every man needs right now. A bold bow tie and a good clutch.

Give us your trend forecast for 2014. Bold prints, short shorts, leather accessories and visors. A sporty yet chic look is going to be the big thing for 2014. Oh, wait … that sounds a lot like my collection!

What do you do when you’re not designing? Go to the theater with my boyfriend, take my dog to the park, sketch, watch movies—basically things people do when they’re off from work.

Something people would be surprised to know about you. My favorite Broadway show is “Into the Woods.” Also, that I’m claustrophobic/enochlophobic; I feel like I’m drowning when people get too close to me or when I’m in small spaces.

What’s in your fridge right now? I always make sure I have eggs, bread, almond milk and—my favorite—ginger ale.

What books are on your nightstand? I have a lot of books there but it’s because of my boyfriend. The ones there now are “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf” by Edward Albee and “Tim Gunn’s Fashion Bible,” which I highly recommend! It’ll change your mind about the way you view fashion.

Your favorite piece in your closet right now. My new Christian Louboutins!

What are you looking forward to most about your time in St. Louis? The fact that I went there once but didn’t have time to enjoy the city and sights. Now I’m excited to explore the city and to show my collection!

 vluna

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