- Liberty Ross covers this week's installment of The Edit. [Net-A-Porter]
- Opening Ceremony has teamed up with upcoming film Spring Breakers on a capsule collection of beach-ready wears, which will hit stores and online on March 22 — the same day the movie opens in theaters. [The Huffington Post]
- Allison Williams is ready for the Met Ball: "The theme is punk . . . I've been looking through Sex Pistols photography," she said. "I'm really excited to commit to the theme." [T Magazine]
- Zaha Hadid has been commissioned to redesign Stuart Weitzman's Milan flagship. [Styleite]
- Anna Wintour was spotted having dinner with Michael Kors at Da Silvano. [Page Six]
- Marni's new perfume now has its own website. [Marni Fragrance]
I just blazed through the New York Times article, "Laura Tames the Ranch," which highlights Laura Bush's return to the Crawford, TX, ranch she and George Bush own. In the article, she notes that her favorite rug is "The one I bought through Arzu, a company that an American woman started for Afghan women, to help them find employment." The company's mission is admirable indeed, advocating for female equality, fair labor, slow design, and sustainability . This year, the company was also awarded the top gold prize in the Edison Awards in the Lifestyle and Social Impact category.
The company's rugs are absolutely lovely, handcrafted by Afghan women artisans whose stories are highlighted on the website. There are dozens of beautiful designs to choose from, but for a rug similar to the one Laura Bush loves, try the Classic or Tribal Heirloom collection. I'm particularly capitvated by the Silence rug.
Arzu also partners with designers to create signature series rugs, and one of the designs currently available was created by one of my favorite architects. Want to see who it is? Keep reading to find out.
Williamson's inspiration for the crystal cuffs, breastplate necklaces, and evening clutches was drawn from the artist Jim Lambie, who is best know for arranging brightly colored tape into geometric patterns. As a result the accessory collection consists of vibrantly colored, oversized graphic pieces—much in line with Williamson's signature aesthetic.
For the spring collections Atelier Swarovski also worked with Zaha Hadid (zigzag-shaped rings), Jason Wu (sculptural necklaces) and Nicholas Kirkwood to create exclusive crystal jewelry and accessories. Past designer collaborations have included Christopher Kane, Doo.Ri Chung, Hussein Chalayan, Giles Deacon, Proenza Schouler, Rodarte, and Philip Crangi.
As part of the annual "Les Sapins de Noël des Créateurs" charity auction to benefit the Sol En Si charity organization, which helps children and families living with AIDS in Paris, last week the fashion elite gathered to bid on 44 Christmas trees designed by some of the most prominent names in fashion.
Zaha Hadid's white column Christmas tree (left) was the top seller, bringing in about $66,000. The blue and white threaded tree (right) was designed by Jean-Paul Gaultier. Which do you prefer?
Source and Source
The magazine industry suffered greatly this week with major layoffs at Conde Nast and Time Inc and significant restructuring within those companies. Mens Vogue, for instance, will be 'absorbed' into it's parent magazine, Vogue. The men's magazine retained only its Editor and Chief, Jay Fielden.
Zaha Hadid, architect du jour thanks to the Chanel Mobile Art Exhibit in Central Park, has opened an installation exhibit at two venues in Manhattan. The installations show Hadid's interest and talent in large-scale, organic shapes--not to mention, business sense.
Photos of Charlotte Ronson's collection for JC Penney have surfaced, calling a lot of attention to the somewhat celebrity designer and her ability to strike while the iron is hot. Her collection for JC Penney, called I [Heart] Ronson, will retail between $15 to $65. Pictured above.
If you're a window person, you'll be happy to hear that holiday concepts for Selfridges (the Macy's of London when it comes to tourist-attracting windows) have been released. There will be a window designed by Alexander McQueen and an overarching theme of Santa as urbanite.
The Chanel Contemporary Art Container by Zaha Hadid at Rumsey Playfield in Central Park may have opened yesterday to the public but the party was Tuesday night as style conscious New Yorkers turned out in droves to pay homage to Karl Lagerfeld's latest extravagance despite the blustery weather. We have photos of the interior as well as a few socialite and fashionista photos by Astrid Stawiarz and Andrew H. Walker
Nicolai Ouroussoff, the New York Times' architecture critic, has us longing for a more critical fashion press with his review of the Chanel's Zaha Hadid art and commerce extravaganza. With every new zinger your editor and creative director found themselves giggling as we wavered between shock and pleasure at the sheer volume of practically scandalous observations.
It’s not just that New York and much of the rest of the world are preoccupied by economic turmoil and a recession, although the timing could hardly be worse. It’s that the pavilion sets out to drape an aura of refinement over a cynical marketing gimmick. Surveying its self-important exhibits, you can’t help but hope that the era of exploiting the so-called intersection of architecture, art and fashion is finally over."
It is a real shame that the best piece of fashion writing we have read in ages comes from an architecture critic but then given the propensity of fashion houses for banning criticism it is no wonder that the Times had to send an architecture critic to do a fashion writer's job.
Why it is that fashion has sunk to such a level of discourse such that we cannot even critique our own internal promotions and marketing campaigns is a question that is much on our mind this morning as we ponder our own place in the style symposium.
We find breathless colorful commentary that expresses the writer's level of cool caché is what is rewarded in fashion journalism over high minded debate or serious inquiry. As a press core we give in to the worst criticism leveled at the industry by blindly pursuing the agenda of oblivious cool. As Ouroussoff points out, it is a crime for which we are rightly lambasted.
But traumatic events have a way of making you see things more clearly. When Rem Koolhaas’s Prada shop opened in SoHo three months after the World Trade Center attacks, it was immediately lampooned as a symbol of the fashion world’s clueless self-absorption. The shop was dominated by a swooping stage that was conceived as a great communal theater, a kind of melding of shopping and civic life. Instead, it conjured Champagne-swilling fashionistas parading across a stage, oblivious to the suffering around them.
And the greatest tragedy of this simpleton agenda? Fashion brings down the entire creative arena from interior design to architecture by continually playing the dim witted blithely unaware younger sister even when we have so much more to offer. Fashion more than any other industry brings together creative minds by helping us consume the best and the brightest in our daily lives. And yet we never focus on those aspects. Why? Perhaps it is that abominable behavior instantly guarantees "it" girl success much to the chagrin of our more serious sisters and indeed many players in fashion. The over the top sex appeal becomes the story to the detriment of deeper issues and wider creative evolution. Creative minds like Zaha Hadid accept commissions from the well funded in the hopes of creating better work and yet we collectively stymie the efforts by focusing on pathetic consumptive marketing efforts. It is a deeply cynical cycle, one that we never seem able to break.
The pavilion’s coiled form, in which visitors spiral ever deeper into a black hole of bad art and superficial temptations, straying farther and farther from the real world outside, is an elaborate mousetrap for consumers.
Why is it that we engage in this behavior as an industry? Is it that we are scared of discovering that underneath our slick exterior we will be found lacking? Do we really lack any kind of confidence in our own products? Ironically by never looking beneath the surface we engage in a kind of self fulfilling prophecy that damns us to ridicule. By never rewarding the inquiring minds, by overlooking or banning the gadflies, and by promoting syncophantic charades of hip we continue our reign as the attractive domineering dim wit ruler of the creatives but God help us all if our consumers outgrow our childish antics. The rest of the creative world almost certainly has if Nicolai Ouroussoff's review is any indication.
Chanel’s Mobile Art Zaha Hadid "spaceship" has arrvied in Central Park amid a frenzy of preparations, workers, and press as it prepare to open to the public on Monday October 20th. The pavilion houses 18 modern artists’ odes to the iconic Chanel 2.55 handbag. Women's Wear Daily with photographer Talaya Centeno, whose photos we present here, was there to capture the scene.
Matthew Williamson is leaving Pucci at the end of his three year contract. His replacement as creative director is Peter Dundas of Emanuel Ungaro.
Sigerson Morrison is collaborating with Pringle of Scotland. The soft but strong shapes in cream, grey and dusky pink will launch for Spring 2009
Liz Claiborne and Narcisco Rodriguez are at an impasse over the growth of the 15 million dollar niche designer label.
Italians are not scared of ecommerce anymore. Really! Milan's Politecnico University, called MIP, will inaugurate Italy's first master's degree program aimed at creating specialists in online fashion sales. Too bad the internships will happen at Yoox's Emporio Armani store. Usability may not be a core value of the program.
Its a good thing the Prada IPO has been pushed back as sticking to a core money making business has never been something at which the brand excells. And often to very positive effect. Prada's new art project with favored architect Remm Koohlhas? Its called Transformer, which will be unveiled in Seoul, South Korea, next year. Transformer is a tetrahedron structure in lieu of a theater that will accommodate cultural, artistic and fashion events Prada is organizing. If Prada has Koolhas and Chanel has Zaha Hadid which duelling fashion + architect team is the Autobots. And more importantly who are the Decepticons?
Iisli has a pop up store on Bond Street. Iceland Kisan is opening a boutique in Soho. Villa Moda has some serious bling in Bahrain. Good thing they now have the backing of the entire country of Dubai to get fancy. Also fast fashion may be out!
The rich keep getting richer even as America decides to be come a socialist country, thus Valentino’s accessories designers Maria Grazia Chiuri and Pier Paolo Piccioli are going to the ultimate luxury destination with a new couture handbag line. Shopping Couture is a line of bags with just one tote — served up in 10 variations.