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Fashion Panel

Fashion Panel judges for the 2012 Emerging Designer Competition: East will be announced later this Fall.  Past judges have included Derek Blasberg, Gordana Gehlhausen, Mychael Knight, Fern Mallis, K. Cooper Ray former VP of Bottega Veneta, Marysia Reeves, Cynthia Rowley, Andrea Serrano, Bob Siegel former CEO of Lacoste, Anne Slowey of ELLE magazine, and Carol Hannah Whitfield.


Alexis Maybank
Gilt Groupe cofounder

Résumé: President of premium products and services at Gilt Groupe, Inc., a members-only online fashion and travel retailer with three-million members and more than 700 brands that FastCompany dubbed the “darling of luxury-obsessed bargain hunters” (2007-present); former G.M. of AOL’s e-commerce businesses; entrepreneur in residence at General Catalyst; early member of the eBay team that launched eBay Canada and helped found eBay Motors
Accolades: Crain’s New York Business “40 Under 40: Rising Stars” (2010), NY Daily News Fashion’s “50 Most Fascinating” (2010), Fashion Week Daily’s “Chic Citizens That Changed 2009”
Lives: Manhattan, NY
Favorite Designers: “I adore Zac Posen, and for men, I really like Dunhill.”
Personal Style: “I like structured yet feminine silhouettes, and no outfit’s complete without a pair of very high heels.”


Andrea Serrano
Costume buyer for Army Wives TV series

Costume buyer for Lifetime TV series Army Wives; stylist on ad campaigns for Maybelline and Nautica; stylist for Maxim, Stuff, and Blender magazines; stylist for celebrity clients such as Ludacris, The Rock, and Sienna Miller; former co-owner of B’zar, a Charleston streetwear boutique that was featured in Lucky, Time Out New York, and Travel & Leisure
Lives: Charleston, SC
Favorite Designers: Alexander McQueen, Jean Paul Gaultier, John Galliano, and Vivienne Westwood
Personal Style: Street chic
Advice for Aspiring Designers:
“Always stay true to your vision. Always think outside of the box. Don’t follow trends, create them."


Anne Slowey
ELLE magazine fashion news director

Résumé: W magazine accessories editor, freelance producer for runway shows and special events at KCD Worldwide, Ultima II director of creative communications, Vogue associate beauty editor, public relations coordinator at Prescriptives
Appearances: Judge on Bravo’s Project Runway seasons one and two, host/judge on CW’s Stylista (2008)


Derek Blasberg
Fashion writer and New York Times best-selling author

Résumé: Editor of VMAN, editor at large of Harper’s Bazaar, and senior special projects editor at V magazine; contributor to Interview, 10, and London’s The Sunday Times; author of Classy: Exceptional Advice for the Extremely Modern Lady (Penguin Publishing), a collection of humorous essays and illustrations released in April 2010
Lives: New York, NY, with his dachshund, Monster


Fern Mallis
Creator of Fashion Week in New York City and president of Fern Mallis, LLC.

Résumé: Senior vice president of IMG Fashion (2001-2009), directing Fashion Week in New York and launching new Fashion Weeks in Miami, Los Angeles, Berlin, and Moscow; executive director of Council of Fashion Designers of America (CFDA) (1991-2001), with whom she created Fashion Week in New York in 1993 and organized 10 annual CFDA Fashion Awards galas, as well as a variety of CFDA initiatives, fundraisers, and membership benefits
Appearances: America’s Next Top Model; She’s Got the Look; four seasons of Project Runway; and as a judge on Bravo’s The Fashion Show, with Isaac Mizrahi and Kelly Rowland
Accolades: 2010 Fashion Maverick Award (American Apparel and Footwear Association), 2010 Woman of the Year Leadership Award (Concern Worldwide), 2010 Fashion Legacy Award (Fashion Chamber of Commerce State of Style Awards), 2010 Leadership Award (Fashion Center BID)


Janie Bryant
Costume designer of Mad Men 

Résumé: Costume designer for AMC TV series Mad Men (2007-present); designer of Janie Bryant MOD, which launched on QVC; author of The Fashion File: Advice, Tips, and Inspiration from the Costume Designer of Mad Men (Grand Central Publishing), released in November 2010; costume designer for HBO series Deadwood (2004-2006)
Accolades: Emmy Award for “Outstanding Costumes for a Series” for Deadwood (2005), Costume Designer Guild Awards for Mad Men (2009 and 2010), Emmy nominations for Mad Men (2009 and 2010)


K. Cooper Ray founder/author and designer of Social Primer bow ties for Brooks Brothers

Résumé: Founder of, a manners and style blog that the Wall Street Journal called “a masculine online cross between The Preppy Handbook and Emily Post” (2008); brand ambassador of Dom Perignon (1999-2001); global VP of PR and events for Bottega Veneta (1996-1999)
Accolades: One of Charleston magazine’s “Charleston’s Most Stylish” and Angeleno magazine’s “Top Ten Men of Style” (March 2010)
Lives: Charleston, SC

Favorite Designers: Ducky Brown, Charlotte Hess, Oscar de la Renta
Looking Forward To: “Showing off my favorite city to the visiting fashion flock”
Advice for Aspiring Designers: “In all things, be charming.”
Front-Row Etiquette: “Be on time and pay attention. If you see something you don’t like, never let it show. Everyone is watching you.”


Marysia Dobranska Reeves
Designer and founder of Marysia SWIM

Résumé: Creator of women’s swimwear company Marysia SWIM (2008) and children’s line Bumby (2010), available at Barney’s, Anthropologie, and many high-end boutiques across the country, as well as in England, Spain, and the Caribbean
Media Attention: Elle, Vogue, Teen Vogue, WWD, and Sports Illustrated’s Swimsuit Edition
Accolades: 2009 CFW Emerging Designer: Southeast
Lives: Charleston, SC
Favorite Designers: Phoebe Philo, Valentino Garavani,
Hannah MacGibbon, Christobal Balenciaga, Marc Jacobs, and Phillip Lim
Personal Style: Retro/luxe/modern/feminine
Advice for Aspiring Designers: “Step back and ask yourself, ‘Is this my best collection? Is this me? Is this presentable and enjoyable for the audience?’”


Mychael Knight
Fashion designer

Résumé: Designer of womenswear label Mychael Knight, including his new signature dress, Two², and Monsieur men’s furnishings label; creator of unisex fragrance MAJK; third runner-up and “Fan Favorite” of Bravo’s Project Runway season three
Appearances: Fashion commentator for the BET Hip Hop Awards and the BET Awards (2006 and 2007), juror on CFW Fashion Panel and juror for SCAD Style (2008, 2009, and 2010)
Accolades: Fashion Innovator (American Intercontinental University-Atlanta), Tomorrow’s Designer (FIT/Fashion and Art Exchange), Phoenix Award (City of Atlanta)
Lives: Atlanta, GA
Favorite Designers: Gianni Versace, Elie Saab, Cushnie et Ochs, Hakkan Yildirim, and Karl Lagerfeld
Personal Style: “A nod to prep and a wink of street”
Advice for Aspiring Designers: “Maintain your voice! Be true to your aesthetic as a designer.”