At the age of 21, Houston has its own native fashion prodigy in Jonathan Tinkle, founder and designer of Jonathan Blake Designs, who launched his debut collection of 27 pieces, named Bella Donna, at a beautiful gathering at the Junior League on October 3rd. For those of us that attended this elegant event, very fitting to a collection filled with equally glamorous, beautiful dresses and separates, it became apparent that we were watching a young man live his dream. How lucky for him to have realized a dream at such a young age. However, after meeting and chatting with him recently, it is apparent that even though he is beginning to live his passion at 21, this was a dream, long in the making, as he began sketching at the age of 14 while attending Page Parkes Talent Agency for acting and decided upon entering a program at Art Institute of Houston that he was going to go for it and begin the process of making his own sketches into real, live garments.
His theory was simply that all women are beautiful and being inspired by the likes of Chanel, Valentino and Versace, and encouraged by friend, Carmen Marc Valvo, he set out to design a timeless, wearable classic collection that would make all women of all ages and sizes look and feel more beautiful. He produces his entire collection in Houston and uses all of the finest, natural fabrics, which he sources in New York City, Europe and Asia.
His inspiration comes from music, nature, his travels and very much by the people in his life who believe in him and help illuminate his path forward. “My heroes are Elizabeth Taylor and Carolyn Farb,” he says without hesitation. “Carolyn is so elegant and she can move mountains.” He also attributes much support from his parents, John and Mandy Tinkle, who are successful entrepreneurs and have encouraged him all along the way. His clothes, which range in price from $300 to $14,000 are custom designs and handled as couture and are sold only by appointment. Visit his designs online at www.JonathanBlake.net. He can be reached for appointments by email at Contact@JonathanBlake.net. He is hopeful of being available in specialty boutiques within the next two years and has dreams of expanding into handbags, shoes, fragrance, jewelry and even menswear in the future. As this young man definitely believes in working hard and achieving his dreams, I am sure that all of this will happen and that we are just seeing the beginnings of Jonathan Blake.
The following are some highlights from Jonathan Blake Runway Show….
*Icarus Gown (long silk, blue winged sleeves)
*Katherine Skirt (long lilac trumpet skirt w/train)
*Natalie Dress (green short cocktail off the shoulder)
*Pencil Skirt (blue silk dupioni)
*Peplum Skirt (purple pencil silk dupioni skirt w/built-in peplum)
*Yvonne Gown (long white gown w/embroidered lace long sleeves)
*Friends/Family gather for Junior League event…
*Next chance to see Jonathan Blake S/S 2013 Collection…