Omaha Fashion Week is kicking off another season August 20-25, and we are thrilled to share more about our amazing lineup of designers!

Inspired by recent transitions in her own life, Emerging Designer Lauren Hansen's new collection for H.Art Studios reveals elaborate men's and women's wear couture. Delicate textures, intricate detail and deep blue tones create unique and ornate designs to interpret sadness, loss, and nostalgia.

How did you get into fashion? Share a little about your background.

I started sewing at the age of 7 when my grandma taught me how to quilt. In 2014 I took my first clothing construction class. I learned how to make a circle skirt and pajama pants. After that, I just watched a ton of YouTube videos on how to drape patterns, bead, and construct in new ways. From there, I taught myself how to construct my own garments. Three years later I made my first collection. One year after that I showed in my first big fashion show, and have now shown with RAW, DSMFW, OFW twice, and have applied for KCFW this fall.

 LEFT: Lauren calls this dress the Hundred Yard Dress. While not actually 100 yards, the dress does consist of quite a bit, with just the bottom panel using a whole 2 3/4 yards of material. RIGHT: Chiffon and burlap come together to make this stunning hand beaded gown with a chiffon sleeved vest over top, hand embroidered and beaded as well.

LEFT: Lauren calls this dress the Hundred Yard Dress. While not actually 100 yards, the dress does consist of quite a bit, with just the bottom panel using a whole 2 3/4 yards of material. RIGHT: Chiffon and burlap come together to make this stunning hand beaded gown with a chiffon sleeved vest over top, hand embroidered and beaded as well.

Describe your brand and the point of view you wish to convey.

My brand is a mix of couture, romanticism, grunge, and texture, with a touch of nostalgia portrayed through the fashion films I make.

What are your personal goals, or goals for your brand?

My biggest goal is to have my own boutique where I can make custom red carpet, wedding, and prom dresses. I want to be self-sustainable in my career and would like to dress some celebrities someday.

Describe your favorite project(s) that you have worked on.

My 2017 prom dress was my first big beading project. I created my first real corset with a ball gown skirt. It has been shown in 4 different shows and has won the Iowa State 4H Awardrobe contest in 2017. Another favorite project of mine was a men’s collared shirt I made for my last collection. My most recent favorite is a top made 100% out of doilies. It’s completely hand sewn and beaded with pearls and pearl lace ribbon draping. This garment is actually a part of my collection to be shown in August.

 A fitted, sequin dress with eight different panel pieces, and a tie on skirt that can also be used as a cape.

A fitted, sequin dress with eight different panel pieces, and a tie on skirt that can also be used as a cape.

Where do you look for inspiration?

I take inspiration from my own life, which goes on to affect the color, materials, and theme. The mood of my collection matches the colors I use. My last collection’s mood was anger and revenge, so I used burgundy as the primary color. My upcoming collection is based off of sadness, loss, and nostalgia, so the primary color is royal blue.

Describe some of the specific inspiration for your new collection.

I was inspired by all my friends graduating this year, the sadness I felt, feeling nostalgia towards being younger again, and also the stresses of daily life. Being a full time high school student with a career, getting ready for shows, and traveling for various opportunities makes me feel like I'm drowning in my own reality. That is why I chose certain materials and silhouettes to look like water, because I feel like I'm drowning.

 LEFT: Velvet bodysuit with burgundy lace pants. Pants have a train on the ends of each leg, and the flower appliques on the bodysuit are hand beaded. RIGHT: 2017 Prom Dress. All hand beaded, with a complete corset and a full ballgown skirt.

LEFT: Velvet bodysuit with burgundy lace pants. Pants have a train on the ends of each leg, and the flower appliques on the bodysuit are hand beaded. RIGHT: 2017 Prom Dress. All hand beaded, with a complete corset and a full ballgown skirt.

What kind of materials do you plan to use and why?

Satin, doilies, velvet, silk, tulle, sequin material, embroidered tulle, dress pant materials, and other dressy materials.

What special processes will you use and what effect will it have on your work?

I love to bead my garments, and most of the garments in my collection are hand beaded by myself.

Is this a new approach for you or is it consistent throughout your work?

This approach is consistent, as I have developed my trademark for my brand so the viewer can recognize my garments as my own.

To learn more about Lauren and her work, visit her website and follow along on Facebook and Instagram as she continues to prepare for the runway! And be sure to grab your 50% OFF VIP Season Tickets to Omaha Fashion Week before they expire TONIGHT! Individual tickets go on sale to the public June 4th.

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