Checking in with Althea Harper PDF Print E-mail
Written by Linda Palacios   
Monday, 17 January 2011 07:00

Checking in with Althea Harper
After almost a year since we last chatted, we reconnect with "Project Runway" Season 6 runner-up to find out what she's up to and how far she's come since the show. Read on to find out!

After she graduated from the University of Cincinnati's College of Design, Architecture, Art and Planning, Althea Harper wowed America with her empowering feminine silhouettes on "Project Runway." Week after week, Cincinnati rooted for Harper and her beautiful designs right through to New York Fashion Week, where she won runner-up in the reality show competition.


Now, more than a year after the finale, Harper is still going strong in fashion, and her designs have progressed significantly from the show. Harper has become known for her fit. With her pieces hugging her customers' bodies (without bunching or looking too tight), Harper's customers can feel sexy and feminine.


On "Project Runway" Harper solely designed what she wanted, without a customer in mind, but now she has geared her design to her buyers, which she doesn't think is a bad thing, she says.


"Design is like a puzzle where form meets function, so it's not just about the form and the beauty or the art of the piece, but it's also about the function of it," Harper says. "What can I do to get my point across but still make it in a price range that's sellable and in a piece that's needed and that someone's going to wear."



For her spring 2011 "Harmonics" line, Harper met form with function through sound waves. "I started looking at sound waves and the really cool patterns that they made, and then I took those patterns and I placed them around the body," Harper says.


One of her favorite pieces from the line is the Wave Dress. "It was the first one I did with the whole using the contour shape, and using the mixed media, it has double layers of mesh on the side," Harper says.


Harper is gearing up to show her fall 2011 line next month. While the date is still tentative, she expects her show to be either Feb. 10 or 11. The inspiration for the line comes from actresses from the '30s, '40s and '50s. "I kind of wanted to take them and place them out of the victim role where they're in power and design with them in today's world," Harper says.


As spring is on its way, Harper also shed some light on what you can expect to see this season. Carrying over from winter, you'll see oversized knits in a lighter weight for the warmer weather. Harper also sees pant styles becoming less form fitting, with more of a variation in style.


To keep up to date with Harper and her work, be sure to check out, where she keeps her blog about her work and, most importantly, her visits to Cincinnati (though she doesn't think she'll make it here before March).




Photo courtesy of Althea Harper

Linda Palacios -

Linda Palacios is the editor of Cincy Chic. Send her an e-mail at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .Read More >>

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