â€œProject Runway Season 10â€ contestant and Brandenburg, Ky. native Alicia Hardesty has returned home to launch her Original Tomboy label at Gifthorse, 554 S. Fourth St., the first store to carry the forward, yet timeless, line. Recently moving from Los Angeles, Hardestyâ€™s also hard at work on Project XÂ², a unique Kickstarter campaign of two Caltech scientists and Hardesty, in an effort to link art, science and technology to create a clothing line for the nerd in everyone.
For more on the Original Tomboy label, visit www.theoriginaltomboy.com or instagram.com/originaltomboy, follow @originaltomboy on Twitter, LIKE the label on Facebook or follow on Pinterest. For more on Gifthorse, also located at 805 E. Market St., LIKE â€œGifthorseâ€ on Facebook.Â
Describe the Original Tomboy label
For me a lot of itâ€™s inspired by growing up a tomboy in Kentucky. So itâ€™s kind of me getting back to my roots and finding my way back home in a way. A lot of itâ€™s very unisex and inspired a lot by menswear, so thereâ€™s a lot of menswear details in it, in the styling and the way it fits, and the colors and the overall attitude of it.
What designers inspire you?
Chanel was always a big inspiration to me. I like designers that are known for stepping out of the box. But I also like designers that design, arenâ€™t just obsessed with their art necessarily, because design is meant to be functional and used, otherwise after awhile it might be pointless.
One of my favorites is the denim jumper, and then, honestly, the railroad stripe shorts because itâ€™s all stuff that I love to wear and I know how functional it is, and I know how it fits and Iâ€™ve seen a lot of different people wear it.
Youâ€™ve begun a Kickstarter campaign for Project XÂ². How is that coming along?Â
We met our goal at the end of April, so right now Iâ€™m in the production stage of all of the items, all of the rewards that we offered on the site: the hoodie, the lab coat and the jumper.
It has a lot of potential, itâ€™s gotten a lot of attention so far, and we also have Caltech and big names like that that are associated with it.
Itâ€™s stuff that feels just different when you wear it. Itâ€™s like high fashion but at the same time itâ€™s really wearable, and people who arenâ€™t normally into fashion like it too, so thatâ€™s the whole point of the line.
Gifthorse will be the first store to carry your line. How did the partnership come about?
They reached out to me actually and I hadnâ€™t really found a store to make a relationship with and (one) who not only believed in the line but wanted to represent it the same way I would. … Itâ€™s a perfect place to launch the collection in Kentucky. Everybodyâ€™s always asked is there somewhere local where you can go and check it out, and this is a good place because they can come and try it on and see how it fits. So Iâ€™m really excited. And also theyâ€™re going to have one-of-a-kind styles here at the store and people can come in and place orders, and they can contact me directly for orders as well.
Photos by CHRIS HUMPHREYS | The Voice-Tribune