The glamor, models, elegance, and creativity make fashion reality TV shows absolutely worth watching. Along similar lines, Netflix’s ‘Next in Fashion‘ returned with a bang. It featured 12 budding fashion designers and stellar guest judges, along with Gigi Hadid and Tan France as hosts. But nothing can beat the incredible designers who crossed challenges to rise to the top. Contestant Usama Ishtay appeared in the second iteration and attempted to highlight his creative side in the fashion game. Nevertheless, with the cameras now turned away, let’s take a closer look at Usama’s journey and find out where he is at present, shall we?
Usama Ishtay’s Next in Fashion Journey
Usama Ishtay was one of the most talented designers who appeared on the show. His design line reflects his personality, “regal with a bit of sass.” Usama appeared on the show to win over the judges and use the platform to show the world how unique and creative his designs can be. For the first challenge, ‘Royalty,’ he wanted to create a royal outfit, and his inspiration and muse was Latin Queen Jennifer Lopez. He went for a long sleeve dress with a straight-cut skirt with many zippers to add the “wow luxe effect” in a beautiful black and gold fabric.
Usama maintained his classic “strong shoulders design” that highlights his brand. The whole outfit screamed royalty, and fans could see the “sexy factor” that he shows through all his designs. Growing up in a small village in Venezuela, Usama never got a chance to be himself, and so, after moving to the US, he attempted to let his designs be a way he could express himself. His brand resonates with his personality — “bold, modern, edgy, and fearless.”
However, despite giving everything he could, it seemed like Usama didn’t quite understand the assignment and failed to impress the judges in the manner he would’ve expected. The judges were not impressed by his dress and felt it was “already seen” and not new. On the one hand, they loved the coat, which felt very J.Lo, yet the dress didn’t complement it. Unfortunately, for the above reasons, Usama was eliminated in the first challenge.
Where is Usama Ishtay Now?
Usama Ishtay, a Syrian-Venezuelan designer, entered the fashion industry to showcase his talent and authentic self through his designs. There is little question about the designer’s incredible skill, even though he was the first contestant ousted from the show’s second season. Besides, Usama has served as his business’s CEO, Owner, and Fashion Designer since 2015.
Tyra Banks, Carrie Underwood, Anitta, Thalia, Chiquis Rivera, Jeannie Mai, Paulina Rubio, Lauren Jauregui, Ariadna Gutiérrez, and Nikita Dragun are just a few of the celebrities whom Usama has styled. Not just that, Gaby Espino wore one of his creations at the Billboard Latin Music Awards in 2020, while Lauren London wore a white, form-fitting design from his collection to the 2019 Grammy Awards.
Previously, rapper Icy Bae (Saweetie) was styled by the designer in 2022 for Cher’s appearance in the most recent MAC Cosmetics ad. The former Petroleum Engineer and Geologist further exhibited his collection at Los Angeles Fashion Week in March 2022. Before starting his own line, Usama acted as the Creative Director at Melissa Mercedes from 2017 to 2020.
The designer served as the team Leader, Production Manager, and Creative Director for the high-end plus-size business in Los Angeles, which is devoted to making ready-to-wear and couture evening dresses and other items in general. The Design Institute of Caracas alum also worked with Martin Zepeda Designs logo as their Assistant Designer. He recently collaborated with Saweetie and debuted his line at the Los Angeles Fashion Week in 2022. Usama is thriving in his career as an up and coming designer; we wish him the best for his future endeavors.
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