Thursday, 30 September 2010

The Future is...


This season, British designer Gareth Pugh - famous for his preference of goth-influenced looks - made a statement by completely relinquishing to have a catwalk show for his spring/summer '11 collection. He replaced his live show with a 11-minute film that was shown yesterday, 29th September 2010 in Paris. Let me rephrase that - "film" does not quite do it justice. We are talking about an artistic masterpiece displaying his collection in a virtual framework that would put a considerable number of sci-fi films and music videos into place.

Director Ruth Hobgen, who, as part of Nick Knight's SHOWstudio - also in charge of imagery of Lady Gaga's Monster Ball World Tour - created this stimulating short film, featuring supermodel Kristen McMenamy and male dancer Jonathan Baker.

The film conveys the emotion and the vision of Gareth Pugh, which is habitually sinister and slightly outlandish. The captivating piece of virtual artistry, which was created in collaboration with ingenious SHOWstudio was projected on a gargantuan screen in the Parc de Bercy sports stadium in Paris instead of a classic runway show.
By abandoning the catwalk for a virtual spectacle instead of merely complementing his show by film material, Gareth Pugh is taking the virtual marketing efforts of fellow designers and fashion brands one step further. Clearly taking sides of advocates for immediacy and overall accessability of fashion, the video was simultaneously accessible on the SHOWstudio website and youtube for thousands of aficionados worldwide.

The elaborate black and white video displayed an alienating yet beautiful composition of Japanese-inspired sharply tailored clothing, some androgynous futuristic shapes as well as some rather unexpected soft and delicate flowing garments. Also, the shades of this season were dominated by silver, grey and white, some monochrome graphic prints but still featured some of the designer's signature dark goth/fetish-inspired looks. 

Following - of what feels to be - the footprints of Alexander McQueen, who smoothed out the way with his cross over show "Plato's Atlantis" on year ago in his last show for spring/summer '10, Gareth Pugh took over the sceptre of virtual fashion showmanship. Certainly as resource consuming as any fashion show, the designer took full control of the representations of his designs.

It feels like this season, we are clearly witnessing a shift towards both ends of the spectrum.
Fashion accessibility, immediacy and ubiquity versus intimacy, luxury and elitism.


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Wednesday, 22 September 2010

Happy 25th career anniversary Naomi

It is commonly known that supermodel Naomi Campbell and Dolce & Gabbana are very close.
So it is not surprising that to celebrate her 25th career anniversary her extended Italian family is throwing not only one massive VIP studded party for her - but eight. And what kind of a present do you give to somebody who supposedly has everything? Well, if you are a world reknown designer brand, what's could be nicer than to dedicate something to her.
Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana are celebrating their close friend - and one of their favorite models & muses - with an exclusive collection of limited t-shirts.

The t-shirt collection features 14 iconic pictures of the supermodel that were taken throughout her 25 year long career by the world's most esteemed fashion photographers such as Mario Testino, Steven Meisel, Steven Klein, Peter Lindbergh, Patrick Demarchelier, Ellen von Unwerth.
The limited collection is available at eight exclusive events around the globe (NYC, London, Paris, Milano, Moscow...), where Naomi will be making appearances and signing them.

The 25th Anniversary t-shirt collection's proceeds will support the charity Fashion for Relief, which was founded by Naomi Campbell in 2005 to raise funds in the fashion world.
The charity has raised over $1 million for the victims of Hurricane Katrina, and is also providing financial support to Russian orphans and the numerous Haitian earthquake victims.

At yesterday's party at the D&G boutique on Old Bond street, celebrities like Didier Drogba, Lilly Allen and Alexandra Burke chatted away with fashion notables like Mario Testino, David Gandy, Claudia Schiffer, Erin O'Connor and Janice Dickinson -just to name a few- who had all did Naomi's hometown event the honour of stopping by. While sipping delicious berry cocktails with Martini Gold ( Dolce & Gabbana's latest collaboration with Martini) out of elegant heavy crystal goblets, everybody discussed the Burberry show they had attended earlier during the day and of course which of the fourteen Naomi motives was their favorite one.



Monday, 20 September 2010

The LOVE Machine

Love is all you need. Well, isn't that what they say?

If you are staying at St Martins Lane Hotel sometime during fashion week and October 15th, never mind if you did forget your Rolex at home. Simply pop down to the lobby and get one out of the 24h vending machine. Sounds ludicrous to you? Well, it isn't.

The LOVE Machine by Selfridges is a unique temporary retail concept, which will dispense a delicate choice of carefully selected luxury goods of Selfridges' product range. Curated by Katie Grand - editor in chief of LOVE Magazine - the luxe vending machine is a hybrid of a hotel gift store and a micro high-end boutique, which offers 32 exclusive items of the Selfridge product empire.
Amongst the eclectic selection are luxury items like the Amazona handbag by Loewe, an Alexander Wang leather & sequin dress and a vintage Rolex watch but also more affordable items like exclusive nail varnishes by Dior or Nixon Nomadic volume-control headphones.

“I wanted the products to be a mix of extreme luxury – so there’s a vintage Rolex watch – to the affordable, my favourite items being ‘secret socks’. I had no idea just how many fashionable men wear secret socks – and how many male celebrities, one very famous male pin up in particular!” stated Katie Grand.

Instant love available at:
The LOVE Machine
St Martins Lane Hotel,
45 St Martin's Lane


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Tuesday, 14 September 2010

Tom Ford is back

After 6 years of deprivation of his influences on women’s ready-to-wear collections, the multi-tasker extraordinaire Tom Ford finally launched a new collection Sunday, 12th September 2010.
The designated dandy persuaded once more with his unmistakable flair for suspense, glamour and a grand entrance:

Tom Ford conspicuously vitiated common contemporary believes and deliberately acted anti-cyclical to everything fashion seemingly has developed into. No live streaming, no release of video footage, no democratization of fashion. He made his show an exclusive and intimate top-secret event in one of his menswear boutiques on Madison Avenue, Sunday 12th September at 6.30. He invited not more than 100 privileged spectators who had to sign a nondisclosure agreement and leave behind their camera equipment at the entrance. The only photographer inside, was his trusted in-house photographer Terry Richardson.

The strategy of secretiveness worked out wonderfully, the tweets from the event evoked the industry’s curiosity even more than usually. The itch to get a first glimpse at Mr. Ford's latest pieces is tremendous.
According to various tweets, the designer narrated his collection personally and had inspirational female celebrities like Lauren Hutton, Juliane Moore, Beyonce and Daphne Guiness strut down the catwalk alongside super models like Karen Elson, Freja Erichsen and Karlie Klos who presented his women RTW comeback. According to the tweets, the collection sported lots of silk, black & white as well as leopard print and gave a synopsis of Tom Ford’s various influences and previous opus. The atmosphere and collection was described as personal, fun, seductive, luxurious and chic and very “Tom Ford”.

The designer is quoted to have stated that he „does not get this need for immediacy" and also did want to avoid piracy of his collections by complete exposure and transparency. But much more than that, he acted upon the maxim of luxury and exclusivity. His strategy instantly suggests confidence and natural poise as well as a clear provocative message to fellow designers that despite his temporary absence, he is clearly still ahead of the pack.

Mere mortals are kept in suspense for another 4 months until January ‘11 when the collections and pictures are finally revealed to the public. Until then, we are doomed to experience what feels like the exquisite pain of unrequited love and admiration.

You must be one hell of a chess master to adjourn your comeback after 6 years of absence in the womenswear RTW circus by another few months.

Delighted to have you back, Mr. Ford!


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Friday, 10 September 2010

Socks and sandals

Yes, you read correctly - and no, this has nothing to do with the fact that I am German - I swear! I do know that it sounds wrong and like a classic fashion faux-pas but obviously, I am not talking Birkenstocks & white tennis socks. I am talking the stylish options proposed by Prada, Mark Jacobs and others for this fall/winter season.

As an autumnal chill is starting to creep up our legs, we start wondering how to amend our styles for the cooler seasons ahead.
We are all aware that pulling of this look we'll be balancing on the edge. Which shoes to wear with which types of socks is the obvious question.

 #1: Do instantly ban all imagines of nerdy tourists, ageing hippies, misguided men - actually all lapses of fashion within this category out of your head. Do it now.

#2:  Generally I would really avoid the colour white - and obviously sport socks (!) and opt for some grey, black or neutral shades

#3: Frilled socks? Think about the following: Do you look like a cheap adult entertainment starlet who is trying to fulfill some cliche phantasie? Do you look like you stole them from your little sister?

#4: Texture: Take some inspiration from what's out there - while Prada is proposing the heavy knit knee high socks, MJ is going for thinner ankle socks

#5: If you decide to go for that look, go it all the way! Don't go halfway - it is doomed to look like an accident. Go for the ankle high version or the knee high version.

#6: If it feels wrong - it most likely does look wrong as well - don't force it! Alternative: leg warmers?

My personal favorite: knitted socks with wedges or pumps. Will upload a pic as soon as I find a decent one.


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Tuesday, 7 September 2010

Fashion's Night Out Fabulous

Vogue is celebrating fashion - and as fit for the bible of fashion, it is not content with a daytime slot. Fashion is celebrated at night. And, also, fashion is not just celebrated in one city - actually it deserves to be celebrated in all corners of the world.

Fashion's Night Out has established itself as compulsory fashion madness:
Designer darlings, marvellous models, industry superstars, bloggers, stylists and all other fashionable crowd are getting ready for a nocturnal foray through their favorite boutiques, department stores and shops.
Vogue supplies expert styling teams, fashion celebrity appearances and a lot of special events in every major city where the event is occuring.
As Fashion's Night Out does not require tickets and is open to everyone, expect mass pilgrimages of fabulous fashionistas and large numbers of curious spectators and fashion-/fun-loving crowd in every city.

Fashion's Night Out kick-off is in Paris today, Tuesday 7th 2010 at 18:00pm and a live webcast from New York City with Vogue's Andre Leon Talley on CBS at 7:00pm ET with the biggest fashion show NYC has ever seen. Over 150 models will be walking down a catwalk, amongst them industry superstars like Coco Rocha, Carolina Kurkova, Chanel Iman, Doutzen Kroes, Jessica Stam, just to name a few. FNO will revolve around the globe in 15 countries- the global event is certainly going to reach its climax in New York on Friday, September 10th 2010 and will end in  Greece & Turkey on September 16th. Make sure to follow the Twitter Buzz to know more details for Paris FNO: #FVN - for NYC: #FNO - check the website for Fashion's Night Out for more details.

"The 2010 edition of the biggest fashion party in history promises to be equally epic, splurge inspiring and full of even more stylish surprises." 

So if you're inhabitant of one of those superstylish fashion cities, get your heels your purse and your credit card and off you go. In the end, the stylish event is not just about Vogue, fashion and blatant advertising but about reflating the economy and giving us yet another opportunity to get the latest look.



Friday, 3 September 2010

British Fashion Award Nominees '10

Wednesday, 1st of September, the British Fashion Council announced the nominees for the British Fashion Awards '10 at Soho House in London.

Amongst this year's nominees are some usual suspects - i.e. Phoebe Philo for Céline and Erdem for designer of the year, Christopher Bailey for Burberry and  as menswear designer of the year; Nicola Formichetti - Lady Gaga's stylist - and photographer Nick Knight for the Isabella Blow award.

Newsworthy is Victoria Beckham's nomination for Designer Brand of the Year - rather unexpected that ex-Posh Spice has been officially acknowledged in industry circles so fast. Beckham announced to be "So honoured to be nominated for designer brand of the year from the British Fashion Council!!!!in love and light x VB x" on her newly created Twitter account (vbfashionweek), where she will be tweeting the lead up of her spring/summer catwalk show during New York Fashion Week on 12 September '10. During the show, which will be held in an intimate circle, she will also debut with a line of handbags. Victoria Beckham is slowly but surely making her way to establish her ways towards fashion circles and even Anna Wintour prompted not to underestimate her.

Here the complete overview of all nominees of the British Fashion Award Nominees 2010:

1.    Emerging Talent Award - Accessories
Nominees: Charlotte Olympia, Husam El Odeh and Jessica McCormack

2.  Emerging Talent Award - Ready-to-Wear 

Nominees: Mary Katrantzou, Meadham Kirchhoff and Michael van der Ham.

3.  Designer Brand 
Nominees: Burberry, Mulberry, Pringle of Scotland and Victoria Beckham.

4.   Model
Nominees:  David Gandy, Lara Stone and Rosie Huntington-Whiteley.

5. Accessory Designer
Nominees: Camilla Skovgaard, Emma Hill for Mulberry and Nicholas Kirkwood.

6. Menswear Designer 
Nominees: Christopher Bailey for Burberry, E.Tautz, Margaret Howell and Paul Smith.

7. Isabella Blow Award for Fashion Creator
Nominees: Nick Knight, Nicola Formichetti and Rankin.

8. Designer of the Year

Nominees: Christopher Kane, Erdem and Phoebe Philo for Céline.

The winners of the British Fashion Award will be announced on December 7 in London's Savoy Hotel.



Thursday, 2 September 2010

Lanvin goes Mainstream

This post is dedicated to a very close friend of mine who is in love with Lanvin.
Seriously...her eyes sparkle every time she mentions the brand, she clutches her hands in front of her chest, feigns a slight swoon, smiles her adorable smile, giggles and lets the name Alber Elbaz melt in her mouth like a piece of luxurious dark chocolate.

After the news had already spread through the grapevine, H&M and Lanvin went public today to announce their design collaboration.  The Swedish retail giant is teaming up with France's oldest Haute Couture house for a designer collection which will hit the stores in time for holiday season on 23rd November 2010.

The collection will comprise womens- and menswear, designed by Lanvin's marvellous creative director Alber Elbaz and menswear designer Lucas Ossendrijver and will be available in approximately 200 H&M branches worldwide.
As the collections will be revealed in a film on 2nd November at H&M's website, it is likely, that the buzz about this design collaboration will have 3 weeks advance to culminate in several hundred extatic fashionistas camping in front of the H&M stores, getting ready to bare their teeth, storm in and rip the boutique to pieces to get their hands one of the covetable pieces.

Karl Lagerfeld and H&M's first design collaboration in 2004, kicked off several more design collaborations. Considerable designers of the likes of Stella McCartney, Comme des Garcons, Sonia Rykiel and Matthew Williamson followed in Karl's footsteps to make pieces of couture accessible to the masses.

According to H&M's and Lanvin's common press release, however, the forthcoming collection seems to be aiming towards a slightly more luxurious approach:

“H&M approached us to collaborate, and see if we could translate the dream we created at Lanvin to a wider audience, not just a dress for less. I have said in the past that I would never do a mass-market collection, but what intrigued me was the idea of H&M going luxury rather than Lanvin going public. This has been an exceptional exercise, where two companies at opposite poles can work together because we share the same philosophy of bringing joy and beauty to men and women around the world.” 
Alber Elbaz, artistic director of Lanvin

If the French powerhouse actually did sell its soul - and yes, this is a quote of the friend mentioned in the top paragraph - remains to be seen once the collection will be launched - or latest on 23rd November when I triumphantly hold that one piece of Lanvin for H&M in my hands, which I could save of its tragic destiny of being torn to shreds by the fashion mob who descended upon H&M in order to pillage itscouture gone mainstream pieces.


Sources: h&,,
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