Gettin’ WORN OUT: a Q&A on Fashion Show Hair with VAIN Founder Victoria Ptak

Stranger WORN OUT

VAIN is designing hair + makeup looks for next Friday, April 8th’s huge WORN OUT fashion show, The Stranger‘s first annual fashion event. The show features visuals by Dumb Eyes + fashions by a variety of emerging and established Seattle designers. This won’t be your average fashion show, so we’re not doing average hair.

As a team of VAIN hairstylists + makeup artists get ready to style over 60 (!) models for the show, the VAIN Blogbots sat down with VAIN’s founder + styledriver Victoria Ptak (formerly Gentry) to talk about fashion show hair, her vision for WORN OUT, and how far she’s come from a neon-filled New Jersey runway back in the 80’s.

How are you approaching designing hair + makeup for WORN OUT?
We are organizing our artists into teams for each designer based on particular skills and interest. The hair and makeup teams are working with me using input from the designers to create looks to best support the presentation of the lines.

Why are you excited about working with The Stranger on this?
We’ve had such great experiences working with The Stranger in the past, and they are in a great position to take on such a big show and do it with vision. Plus we are thrilled they have selected emerging as well as established designers to represent the Seattle fashion community.

How will the looks you’re designing be different from “typical” fashion show hair & makeup?
The looks are super varied to suit the designs. A great blend of ready to wear and couture/art fashion. We will have the opportunity to create some theatrical hair and makeup that wouldn’t fit in a strictly commercial show. The final look of the evening is going to bring the house down!

You’ve been doing hair for fashion shows for a while. Any memorable ones from when you first started?
The first fashion show I ever helped organize was in 1986 for a small boutique in New Jersey. The models were my teenage clients from the salon. My vision was a lot of neon and huge hair (it was 1986, after all). The first girls walked out to “Fight for your Right to Party” turned up to maximum volume. I was super excited but the models’ mothers were obviously aghast. It was a bit over the top for suburban NJ but it was definitely a show!

What’s your favorite part of doing hair for fashion shows?
I love the creative process of designing looks to support and enhance the vision of the clothing, but my favorite part of every fashion show is that moment when the lights go down and the spots come up, then all the time, effort, preparations and nerves are gone and it’s show time.


The Stranger’s WORN OUT fashion event happens next Friday, April 8 at ACT Theatre (7th & Union) in Seattle. Doors at 7pm, show at 8. Featuring designs by Prairie Underground, Stella Love, Pun(c)tuation by Tarboo, Mark Mitchell, Ceair St. Onge, Lilia Ramirez, Like A Rockstar, Alex Hancock, Jamie Von Stratton, Stella Saintclair, Miriam Reynolds, Ramona Barnes, Isaiah Whitmore, and Cameron Levin. And hair by us. Click here for tickets. You won’t want to miss it.

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