Designers' Firsts: Zac Posen Remembers His First-Ever NYFW Show

Zac Posen 
Photo: Astrid Stawiarz/Getty

"Designers' Firsts" is a series where seasoned designers recall their first major milestones in their careers (read Thakoon Panichgul, Josep Font of Delpozo, Jonathan Simkhai, Prabal Gurung). Next up: Zac Posen, who will host an exhibition at 7 p.m. on Feb. 13 during New York Fashion Week.

The first time I knew I wanted to be a designer: When I watched my older sister make a skirt out of vintage men's ties...I was about 6 years old.

My first sketch was of: I've sketched from the day I could pick up a crayon.

Zac Posen - Designer Firsts - EMBED 4
courtesy Zac Posen

The first thing I ever designed was: For my dear friend, Stella Schnabel. It was a nude color velvet with a fuchsia lining.

My first mentor was: My sister, Alexandra.

My first show at NYFW was in: February 2002 with original music composed with John Frusciante. I had some amazing friends and models who walked in the show: Jemima Kirke, Jade Berreau, Sophie Dahl, Erin O'Connor, Liberty Ross.

Zac Posen - Designer Firsts - EMBED 3
courtesy Zac Posen

The first model I cast was: Karen Elson.

Zac Posen - Designer Firsts - EMBED 1
courtesy Zac Posen

The first celebrity to ever wear my designs: There were several girls who wore my designs and were so supportive early on: Claire Danes, Milla Jovovich, and Naomi Campbell, but the first major press moment was with Natalie Portman.

The first time I knew I made it: I am on a journey and still making it.

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The first lesson I learned the hard way: I tried to sew a velvet hat with a satin liner and it was disaster. Know your fabrics!

The first thing I ever Instagrammed was: I can't tell you about my first—there are 9,000 of them!

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