A lifetime of dress designing can amount to a great number of garments. A natural born talent to the art of dressmaking, by the age of 16, Cate Lyon was a skilled seamstress. Born on the shores of Lake Erie in Lorain, Ohio, Cate had made at least 100 garments before graduating high school and was winning state wide awards for her achievements. She then attended Brock University in St. Catherines, Ontario, Canada. Studying dramatic arts and design, Cate learned early on that a career in designing was fast approaching. The department head, Warren Hartman, encouraged Cate to move to London to further her studies. In the mid 1970’s, Cate Lyon found herself in London at the height of the Picadilly era. Because of Cate’s excellent dressmaking skills, she landed a job at Bernshaw’s of London under the direction of Victor Edelstien. The design team created evening gowns for Harrods of London and many royals of the time.
Cate continued her stay in Europe, working as a freelance designer in Paris, France and Zurich, Switzerland. She returned to the United States and opened her first private label studio in Columbus, Ohio. While in Columbus, the company “Cate Lyon Studio” designed for several small independent firms. In 1995, Victoria Secret approached the studio to manufacture small test runs, including pieces up in the thousands. She also created sample garments for the overseas factories. Thousands of samples later, the opportunity came in 1997 through 1999 to create garments for the Victoria’s Secret Runway shows at the Plaza in New York City where she shared the runway with designer Chantel Thomas of Paris, France.In 2000, Cate had a serious injury to her back and closed her studio. She traveled to Honolulu, Hawaii for one year of physical therapy. In 2001, she reopened the “Cate Lyon Studio” in Savannah, Georgia. At her new location she designs all private label originals including Paula Deen’'s wedding gown. In 2008, she presented her new label “"HANT BLU”" at the Telfair Museum in Savannah, GA. The collection includes ready to wear dresses, special occasion gowns and original jewelry.
Cate feels fortunate to be in Savannah, home to Savannah College of Art and Design and its excellent fashion department.