Christian Siriano

Christian Siriano

by Melissa Magsaysay

The Designer Celebrates a Decade of His Collection and Celebrating All Women.

Considering his infectious flair, endless red carpet creations and ability to empower and inspire by celebrating all women’s bodies (way before body positivity movement was a thing), it’s hard to believe that Christian Siriano launched his eponymous collection just 10 years ago.

The designer has made every opportunity count. With his reality show start, the world got a glimpse of not just his hilarious, super positive and ambitious personality, but also his talent for creating timeless looks that quickly became a Hollywood favorite.

The diverse set of celebrity fans that sit front row at Siriano’s runway shows (Cardi B, Laverne Cox and Meg Ryan were perched at his Fall 2018 show and Leslie Jones memorably and very enthusiastically praised the models and the designer’s collection while watching his Spring 2018 show), are a testament to the fact that the admiration from Siriano’s fans surpasses a dress. People love his message of inclusion. It makes them feel good; better, probably than the most impeccable gown in the world ever could.

With a newly opened store in New York and a career that continues to soar, Siriano seems like he’s just getting started as far as what he’s capable of.

Here he reflects on his brand and place in fashion after 10 years of dressing women of every size, shape and age.

"It never even came across my mind to not open up our collection to people of all shapes, sizes and ages because that was who our customer has always been."
Christian Siriano
Siriano and actress Danielle Brooks during his Fall 2018 show.
Christian Siriano
Siriano backstage at his Spring 2018 show with models and friends.
Christian Siriano
Ashley Graham in Christian Siriano
Christian Siriano
Siriano with Leslie Jones at the Time 100 event.

Q & A With Christian

You have long been a supporter of diversity and inclusion in the fashion industry, why has this always been a priority for you?

I think as a designer it’s our job to make the customer feel and look their best no matter what. Getting dressed should be the fun and easy part of the day, not a struggle. It never even came across my mind to not open up our collection to people of all shapes, sizes and ages because that was who our customer has always been. People from all walks of life, all around the world and who doesn't want that when they are building a brand? I just think it’s important to celebrate beauty and I think there is something beautiful in everyone.

Considering the traditional mandates with size, age etc within the fashion world, was it ever challenging to stick to your principles and beliefs? Did you ever fight pushback?

I think there is always push back when things are different. When people see the same thing all the time season after season then of course when something comes along that looks different it's questioned. But I think all that change is for the better. I also don't always care to do the safe thing. The "normal" way of doing things just didn't work for my business and I was not going to miss out on getting a new customer.

Who are some of the women in your life that inspire you most?

So many everyday inspire me. The women I work with who are all so different inspire me. The beautiful actresses and musicians I dress on the red carpet inspire me and of course my original muses, my mother Joye and sister Shannon have been inspiring me from day one.

Do you feel like the industry has come a long way? What would you most like to see change in terms of inclusion?

Yes the industry has changed a lot over the last few years. The idea of acceptance is out there and a conversation has started, which is the most important thing, that we are all talking about things. All of these changes to celebrate people are all for the better. We get to make people feel great about themselves and it opens up a entire new category of sales from each brand. So if you get to grow your business and make people feel great about wearing a dress then it's a win win.

What can a woman who has never worn your clothing before expect in terms of the attention to fit?

I think that we are here to celebrate your body no matter what size you are, let's celebrate everything you have. We want the best fabrics, and details to get noticed when you walk out your door and we don't compromise that for size. We want our clothes to be comfortable but still stylish, and elegant that can be worn in real life.

Granted there are many, but what do you consider to be one of your biggest and proudest career highlights?

It is hard but really the best moments are just seeing so many amazing women wear our clothes every day. Even if I'm walking down the street and we see a pair of shoes or a bag it's exciting. It's exciting that we are able to keep it going 10 years later.


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