Portland Fashion News:
Seth Aaron Wins Again
By Tamara Alazri
A self-taught designer, Seth Aaron Henderson emergence onto the fashion scene starts with winning Project Runway in 2007. A sewing machine purchased by his wife marks the beginning of his fashion career. And although he has received much recognition for his fashion designs, he has remained in Vancouver, Washington for the last decade. Winning the third season of Project Runway All Stars, Seth is ready to take his career to the next stage. He is leaving the Pacific Northwest for Los Angeles in July. He says he’ll miss it here and does not intended to sell his home. His wife, Tina, is an advocate of Seth’s career and is looking forward to the move. Seth’s two children will attend school in Los Angeles; his daughter is a senior in high school and has an interest in the purchasing end of the fashion industry. “She loves to shop and is really good at that sort of thing,” Seth says. His son currently studies film.
Over the years, Seth has distinctively created masterful and structured clothing that perhaps, closely resembles perfection. In fact, he calls himself a perfectionist in every sense of the word, transitioning much of his professional life into his personal life and visa versa. When he sends a collection onto the runway, there is never a thread or a seam or zipper out of place. His clothes are fluid and thoughtful and balanced, just like a beautiful scene from the Nutcracker. There is a sense of composure, even in the way he thinks. It is true many designers become inspired by a piece of architecture or building, or a concrete object. But Seth merely designs from his memory. He keeps all of his ideas secretly locked away, hidden behind layers of veils. The relationship between his earlier work and his current work reveal a striking similarity in how he designs clothes. One of his earlier shows at New York Fashion Week in 2010 presented a stream of structured silhouettes with refined leather detailing and a wool houndstooth dress, jumbo plaid prints and his continuous love for red hues and black and white. He undoubtedly shows consistency, just like on Project Runway. Having won only a single challenge, his story was almost like that of the Turtle and the Hare. He played it safe, letting the other designers have their moment. He played with neoprene, wools and natural leathers. The final runway show was held at the United Nations Headquarters in New York, where the designers were asked to create a look inspired by their heritage. Seth got Spain. His collection, titled “Ole” slightly resembled an animated television series. Models looked picture-perfect with sweeping up hair-dos planted firmly on top of their head, red lips, and bold reading glasses, dressed in brightly solid colors like a yellow jumpsuit and a crimson red matador wool dress that won over the heart of judge Alyssa Milano.
Seth walked away with the biggest reward in Project Runway history including a cash prize of $150,000, a fashion spread in Marie Claire magazine, a one-year position as contributing editor, and a signed contract with QVC, where he’ll be designing a limited edition capsule collection. He’s currently prepping and sketching for his upcoming QVC collection, which will air in March. He plans on opening a studio space in Los Angeles with fellow Project Runway alumni Viktor Luna and Joshua Christensen. Viktor and Seth remain close friends, and collaborate in creating the Intel Personal Cloud Collection at Portland’s FashioNXT. Seth also unveiled the world’s first Solar Concept collection for Solar World in 2010, focusing on sustainable materials. With Christensen’s focus being on menswear, he would most likely be head designer of that part of the company, which is something that Seth has yet to explore. “I haven’t done menswear before, but I’m totally interested in incorporating it as the business continues to grow.” Viktor currently lives in New York, but is planning to move to Los Angeles. “I’m hoping to bring in the best level of talent,” Seth says.