Korean flowers and architecture inspire fashion show at ZaZa Hotel

When fashion designer Christy Lynn showed off her Fall/Winter 2022 collection at the ZaZa Memorial City Hotel, temperatures topped 90 degrees. Hopefully, that won’t be the case in a few months when the most stylish people in Houston trade their bathing suits and summer dresses for transitional pieces to change into the fall. Or, start planning their wardrobes for winter vacations and travels.

This last need is a big part of Lynn’s clientele and inspiration. Women come to her for travel outfits and she, in turn, is often influenced by the wonders seen abroad.

“This fall collection is based on architect Zaha Hadid’s iconic Dongdaemun Design Plaza in South Korea,” says Lynn. “She built this huge square in the heart of Seoul, looking to the future. And she’s a woman.”

The Houston-based Korean-American designer is also a fan of the mix of old and new, hard and soft. There is an abundance of Korean flowers paired with thick-soled boots. Between the lightweight silk and chiffon dresses are textured separates.

“You’ll see a lot of layers – sweaters with flowy skirts, all-leather pieces, embroidery and cutouts,” says Lynn.

Floral prints are part of her signature. Leather skirts and jackets stand out in bone and dark green tones.

She is still trying to find out exactly who Christy Lynn’s client is and what she is buying. At first, Lynn thought her clients were primarily in the market for ultra-feminine looks. But since she opened an independent workshop in the Avondale neighborhood of Montrose, a new demographic has emerged.

“There’s a big 35 to 70 age bracket of women who work as lawyers or (in) finance who come to me for nice blouses to wear under blazers,” she explains. “Women who have more time during their day to go to the event buy the flowing dresses.”

Houston has a large cohort of women who lunch in addition to the gala. Adding black tie dresses is a natural next step.

“I want to expand the collection to more parties,” Lynn hints. “I like specialty things like Italian lace and French lace.”

French fashion has been on her mind lately. She traveled to Paris during the summer and plans to return there twice a year for a still low-key international project.

Before Lynn moved to Houston, she spent several years on the East Coast. A career-defining stint in Manhattan also helped her share her personal style.

“I like to look polished and classy, ​​I’m a city girl at heart,” she says. “Texas women are a little dressier, shoes are on point here. Maybe it’s because in New York we walk in sneakers and flats. Here they can drive to wear shoes. perfect shoes with the outfit. And women in Texas aren’t afraid of color.”

After studying at the Rhode Island School of Design, Lynn worked under Nanette Lepore as an assistant bead and embroidery designer and Elie Tahari where she honed her sewing and costume skills. She also spent five years with Catherine Malandrino, who became her mentor.

Launching a clothing line in New York was daunting; in Houston, the idea seemed much more feasible. What started as a small capsule collection for Lynn’s wedding looks – engagement party, bridal portraits, etc. – was successful when she bought the coins at the wholesale market.

“Everything snowballed after that,” she says. “Leah (Hale) from Tootsies was the first to buy my collection. They’ve been on board since day one.”

The Texas-sized women’s clothing store near River Oaks will also carry Lynn’s pieces next season. Attendees of his Hotel ZaZa show were able to shop on-site via a QR code, but there’s also the old-fashioned way: inside his historic “home” workshop in Montrose.

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