“Fashion Star” Kara Laricks wins big! But we knew her when…


As if you needed a reason to watch NBC’s “Fashion Star”—the addictive “Project Runway”-meets-Home-Shopping-Network fashion design show—look no further than Overland Park’s own Kara Laricks.


Kara Laricks from Fashion StarKara Laricks is a frontrunner on NBC’s “Fashion Star” // photo courtesy of Pop Tower

Laricks, a former fourth-grade teacher, was one of 14 unknown designers chosen to compete on the show. Each week, the designers create runway lines, which are evaluated by three celebrity fashion mentors. The twist: Three buyers, from Macy’s, Saks Fifth Avenue and H&M, cast on-the-spot bids for the designers’ work. “Fashion Star” viewers can purchase the top-bid pieces in stores the very next day.

This week, Laricks designed two jackets, inspiring mentor and renowned menswear designer John Varvatos to say she was “on a friggin’ roll–home run, grand slam!” Saks buyer Terron Schaefer nabbed the coat for $70,000, bringing Laricks’ total sales to $230,000 so far. Last week, Laricks’ line of menswear-inspired dresses sparked a bidding war between H&M and Saks, with the pieces ultimately headed to the racks at Saks after offers topped out at $110,000.

But before fashionistas across the nation were clamoring for Larick’s apparel designs in high-end department stores, we had our own obsession with her innovative accessory line, Collar Stand + Tie, in the magazine office. Last year, KC Magazine Executive Editor Katie Van Luchene was the lucky winner of one of Larick’s “hoodie scarves,” a super cozy and all-around chic piece made from a deconstructed hooded sweatshirt.

We can’t wait to watch what Laricks creates in upcoming episodes. Menswear-inspired pieces with a totally feminine fit—it’s the perfect mix of classic and new. You can bet we’ll be on the couch Tuesday nights this spring, curled up in the warmth of a favorite hoodie, watching this Kansas City native’s every fashion move.