Kevan Hall’s creative eye, elegant perspective, and intuitive design process makes him any fashion-loving woman’s best friend. Rather than worshiping trends or creating designs that speak more about him than the wearer, Hall’s penchant for glamour and understanding of the psyche and style of a woman wanting to look her best are his greatest assets.
That’s why some of the biggest names in Hollywood turn to him to dress them for the red carpet, including Vanessa Williams, Virginia Madsen, Debra Messing, Gabourey Sidibe and Tina Fey.
Detroit-born Hall knew designing would be his future.
It all started in his earliest years, when his passion for fashion emerged at age seven. Detroit-born Hall knew designing would be his future. Later, he attended the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising in Los Angeles. He founded Kevan Hall Couture in 1983, selling to luxury retailers including Neiman Marcus, Saks Fifth Avenue and Bergdorf Goodman.
The list of big names goes on when you consider his prestigious reign as Design and Creative Director at Halston, when he was enlisted to reinvigorate the brand and where he dressed Celine Dion, Sharon Stone, Charlize Theron, and Salma Hayek. Two years later, in 2002, he launched the Kevan Hall Collection, a ready-to-wear line.
We had the opportunity to sit down with Hall to get his perspective on fashion vs. style, and dressing for maximum impact.
WHAT’S YOUR TAKE ON FASHION VS. STYLE?
Style is something that you’re born with. It’s innate fashion. Anyone can look through a magazine, copy what they see, or be influenced by designers. You can purchase great fashion, but style is the way that you put something together. It’s the way you live your life.
WHEN WAS THE MOMENT YOU KNEW IT WAS TIME TO DESIGN YOUR OWN COLLECTION?
Pre-Halston I worked in the industry doing a lot of different things, even designing maternity T-shirts that said “Baby on Board” or designing jean pockets all day. I wanted to have my own company, and felt there was a void in the market for luxury designer clothes, but at a great price for a younger audience. I worked at night, putting together a little collection, and then drove my Oldsmobile Cutlass up to San Francisco to work my way down the California coast with appointments. I didn’t know how they’d respond, but they loved what I had.
WHAT IS SIGNATURE KEVAN HALL DESIGN?
My designs are always feminine with clean lines. There’s a certain amount of sensuality and a sexy edge to them. My designs are for a confident woman who is not a slave to fashion, but rather she appreciates things that are beautiful and wants to be well-dressed for her position in life.
AND WHAT ABOUT YOUR SIGNATURE LOOK?
My signature look is evolving. I cut the dreadlocks that I had for more than 20 years. So my new look is shorter hair with vintage jackets that I love with jeans and boots. I’m mad for anything paisley: shirts, jackets and ties.
TELL US ABOUT FALL.
Fall is an interesting mix of a baroque modernism where there were lots of embroidered tulles, passementerie laces, Rococo-inspired laces. That combination is paired with a kind of swirly filigree design with embroidery, florals, and pleated ruffles, which is quite beautiful.
WHAT ARE YOU LIKING FOR SPRING 2019?
I’m working with two different color palettes. They are more muted with shades of celadon, puce, and camels, which is kind of interesting for spring, also with the brightness of bright florals. I’m loving the process of putting it all together.
WHAT ABOUT YOUR OWN CLOSET?
I have a lot of relaxed jackets. Right now I’m looking for the perfect wool gingham jacket in a bold black and white check. My favorite pants are coming back in fashion for men and women, they’re more relaxed. I’ve also seen higher heels for men’s shoes and boots.
WHAT IS ICONIC FASHION?
I’ve always loved a great trench coat, and I love it mixed with sportswear and even eveningwear. Jeans are iconic. A beautiful blouse with some type of embellishment, an interesting cuff, or some kind of great detail makes a great statement. And, there’s nothing better than a nicely fit, tailored dress on a woman.
No matter what the challenge or whatever I face, I know I can knock those doors down and succeed at whatever I put my hands to.
WHAT ARE YOUR FAVORITES ON THE RED CARPET THIS YEAR?
I’m liking things that are a little bit more relaxed and not so much fishtail, which has become so predictable. When a woman is confident enough to not have to be all cinched in and can work the movement of a great fabric that’s softer, light and diaphanous. It’s beautiful when the fabric fits to the waist and then it just floats away. To me, that’s a spectacular, romantic and sensual statement…when a woman owns it.
WHAT ARE THE FIVE MOST IMPORTANT PIECES A WOMAN SHOULD HAVE IN HER CLOSET?
Trench coat, white shirt, a wider leg pant, a little black dress, a wonderful dress that will take her anywhere in red or navy, and a great-looking jean that looks good on the booty.
WHAT ARE YOUR CLIENTS LOVING?
A little bit of a fit and flare or slim through the hip and then a little flip at the bottom of a skirt or a dress. They are loving my evening separates and silhouettes that are a bit more relaxed, like my capri pant worn with a fluid kind of top with a touch of embellishment.
WHAT GUIDES YOUR LIFE?
I’m a spiritual man. I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. No matter what the challenge or whatever I face, I know I can knock those doors down and succeed at whatever I put my hands to.