House of Charles Neumann
By Danielle Cutillo
Fashion designer Charles Neumann has been making his presence known in the fashion industry. In the past year, this Boston-based designer has been working on a new collection while reapplying to the fashion design reality show Project Runway. This past October, Neumann placed first in the 2014 We Can: An Evening with Mondo Guerra (a previous winner of Project Runway All Stars’ charity fashion show and competition). This event featured local designers and celebrity judges while raising money and awareness for AIDS Connecticut, which includes statewide partnerships providing supportive services for those affected by HIV.
Neumann attended Lasell College in Newton, where he studied fashion design. While he had already been designing for some time, attending Lasell helped him refine his skills. When asked how he started designing, Neumann said, “I didn’t find it; it sort of found me.” His mother taught him how to sew at a young age. “I learned a lot through exploration and self-teaching,” he said. “I am never happier than when I am designing. Nothing brings me more joy than design.”
His company, The House of Charles Neumann, is a design house of one. He began his label in 2007 and specializes in women’s evening and ready-to-wear. “The most important thing is that the quality of my work is very strong and immaculate. It may take a little longer, but I can assure that the work is at as high of a caliber as possible,” said Neumann.
Neumann is positive about his work; he is enthusiastic about his design aesthetic and describes it as both streamlined and exotic. As his work has evolved, he has incorporated various culture aesthetics, a wide variety of fabrics, many textures, and “lots of everything.” His designs now have a much darker construction and a modern appeal.
Currently, Neumann is working on his Futurist Collection for the Fall/Winter 2015 season. In his most recent shoot, Rosemary Leger and Cameron Weiwel modeled the minimalist garments with a dark appeal and an edgier vibe. The photos, taken by Jonathan Cole Studio, truly convey his new aesthetic.
Neumann is working hard to brand his name in the Boston community. Last fall he participated in a Lasell College Alumni Night fashion show, Fashions of the Future, which was held at the Bond Restaurant and Lounge in Boston. This past November, he showed a few garments in the Fierce Styles 7 Runway show, a charity show that benefited health care in Haiti. “I’ll never turn down a charity show. It was a great cause that benefits a lot of people,” said Neumann.
Especially exciting for Neumann is his collaboration with MetroWest Opera, a local opera company that stars college-aged designers looking for exposure. Neumann worked with the company in 2011 when he was a senior at Lasell. While working on his senior thesis, he also designed one of the company’s shows, which included over 40 costumes. “It was just me: a team of one. I did everything from designs to fittings. Putting it all together was a lot of work. I never did such a big casting before,” said Neumann. Recently, the opera company invited Neumann to return to work on an upcoming production. “Doing theater is so different than doing a collection or editorial. It has more room for creativity. It’s cool to be asked back,” said Neumann.
Check out Neumann’s social media pages for all of the insider details. He can be contacted through Facebook and Instagram at The House of Charles Neumann, where his latest designs and information on his upcoming events and projects can be found.