Tag Archives: Style

Kanye West Cries Front Row At Virgil Abloh’s First Louis Vuitton Show

This most recent Louis Vuitton fashion show at Men’s Paris Fashion Week was a monumental one in terms of the hype building up around the show regarding Virgil Abloh, creator of Off-White, and his first collection as the head artistic director of Louis Vuitton. This was a monumental moment in fashion itself as Virgil is the first African American artistic director of the famous Paris fashion house and one of the few to be a leading influence at the level he is at. What Virgil has been able to accomplish in what seems like just a couple years time from his beginnings with his brand Pyrex Vision to Off-White to his collection with Nike it seems that Virgil has almost reached the pinnacle. To Virgil Abloh though I believe he cares more about just spreading the culture that he was brought up into this industry in.

Virgil Abloh and Kanye West have known each other and have been close creative partners since the early 2000s. Virgil has worked on a lot of different projects with Kanye before ultimately breaking off to step out of Kanye’s shadow, not necessarily creatively but Virgil wanted to make a name for himself. Virgil did this by creating his brand Pyrex Vision back in 2012 which was his first venture into the world of high fashion. Pyrex Vision consisted mostly of screen printing onto Champion blanks and old Ralph Lauren flannels, not exactly revolutionary, but Virgil was able to charge upwards of 500 dollars for the pieces and they would sell. Virgil eventually folded the brand and started Off-White with a crew of Italian streetwear aficionados. Off-White would pick up right where Pyrex Vision left off charging astronomical prices for mostly screen printed streetwear. But Off-White would grow into a Nike collaboration and establish it as one of the most sought-after brands in streetwear today. This would ultimately be Virgil’s foot in the door when it came to breaking into the world of high fashion houses like Louis Vuitton.

Now during Men’s Paris Fashion Week everyone patiently waiting to see what Virgil would do with his introductory show as the artistic director of Louis Vuitton. Virgil showcased to the world and to everyone in attendance a beautiful gradient painted pavement runway outdoors in a garden in Paris. Virgil really delivered when it came to the overall presentation of the environment around the garments. But the garments and accessories were nothing like Louis Vuitton has ever had before from transparent gradient rainbow luggage to ceramic white chains draped over the models and as straps for the luggage. After having various streetwear icons and celebrities from the likes of Kid Cudi, Playboi Carti, Blondey McCoy and A$AP Nast you can really tell that this show was all about the culture that Virgil Abloh came from. That is why Kanye, seated front row, when Virgil walked out at the end got so emotional. Kanye was able to see one of his very close friends and collaborators not only ascend to the pinnacle of fashion for African Americans today but was able to be a part of it with his new album being played during the show. Kanye has been skeptical of Virgil leaving his side and branching out in becoming one of today’s fashion moguls but he’s finally been able to come to terms with it in this most recent embrace at the end of Virgil’s very first show as the artistic director of Louis Vuitton.

So Trendy Men’s Shoes Are Memes Now?

When many people think of a meme you’ll usually think of some kind of online trend or joke that becomes adopted by multiple different subcultures and is used in their own way to portray their own joke or message. Overtime with the internet becoming more and more accessible to people of all ages and backgrounds memes today has become somewhat of this watered down joke that dies out within almost a month of its relevance. Memes often go to die in a few places whether it’s the Yodel kid appearing on the Ellen show or your mother or father oversaturating their Facebook page with memes they really don’t understand. Now apparently there is a new category of a meme within the menswear community, this meme just consists of wearing a shoe that is considered by most within the world of fashion as trendy. It doesn’t just consist of shoes through a few garments also fall into this category according to popular menswear subreddits and online blogs. With the use of the word meme to describe certain garments and products it just raises the argument are trends just memes within the world of fashion?

With certain shoes being regarded as memes today for menswear communities it opens the discussion as to how these shoes achieved their meme status. Most of these shoes are just menswear staples that any man should have in their closet as opposed to something of a meme that comes and goes. You have classic men’s shoes like the Adidas Stan Smith being referred to as the ‘Meme’ Smiths and Clark’s Desert Boots being thrust into this category of a meme as if they are loud out there shoes that will not be relevant in a few months. These are shoes that have been around for many years and may have recently become a little more popular than they were maybe 20 years ago but that is no reason to classify the shoes as memes. Sometimes when a shoe or garment isn’t as popular and widespread but it is a quality product that can apply to many different peoples wardrobes all it needs is that reintroduction into the mainstream in order to boost its popularity and make many realize that this is something they need in their closet. Now, this doesn’t mean meme to me even though it has gained popularity because the Stan Smith is something every man needs in their wardrobe which is a white leather sneaker and the Desert Boot falls into the same exact category of something every man can use to sophisticate any outfit without doing too much. This may scream meme too many online menswear communities but these are simply just efforts by the average man to make more fashion conscious decisions when it comes to their footwear and to overall become introduced to fashion as a whole, which is a good thing.

With all this recent change of popular shoes achieving this new found ‘meme-dom’ it raises the argument is there an equivalent within women’s fashion? Women’s fashion is mostly regarded as being centered around developing somewhat of a personal style not relying on a few key items within their closet to achieve their ‘unique’ look. I personally disagree with this and if you are going to talk about menswear having its own memes womenswear definitely has its own memes. From riding boots, the white Converse Chuck Taylor and the ever so hated ‘spartan’ sandal women’s footwear definitely has its own memes just the online discussion isn’t as great, but they are there. That doesn’t mean those are memes either these are just products that a lot of women purchase because they are popular and reliable for them. I don’t think online communities should be describing different shoes as memes but you can’t stop the discussion from happening and you can’t stop more and more men from buying these shoes, so the discussion on what is and is not a meme within menswear will continue.

All-Purpose Beachwear Paves Way for Growing Company

With the nice weather now prevalent all around the United States, and summer officially just a few days away, beach season is officially here. Be it an actual beach, a lake, a river, a pool, or hot tub, swimming is now a plausible way to cool down. Often, swimwear has been seen to hold the sole function of wearing to the beach or pool to catch some sun. Once the fun is done, people quickly rush to change out of the impractical and regularly ugly attire.

Onia, a swimwear company started by Carl Cunow and Nathan Romano, aims to deconstruct the label against beach wardrobe. Much like yoga pants went from being a workout-only piece of clothing to a staple of women’s fashion, Onia hopes that beachwear can soon be used for much more than tanning and swimming.

Started in 2013, Romano and Cunow set out to create swimwear that served more than one purpose. Originally focused on men’s swim trunks, the duo dreamed of creating shorts that could obviously not only be used at the beach but also as casual, everyday shorts and athletic shorts. In essence, they wanted to create shorts for men that could be used in just about every situation without compromising on style. In a previous interview with Fortune, Romano stated that “this is how we started Onia and, since our launch, we have fully developed into a men’s and women’s swim and ready-to-wear brand, and all of our products have been launched based on the same core philosophy that we started with — fit, fabric and function.”

Since the company’s inception, they have expanded their market from solely men’s swimwear. They delved into the women’s swimwear market, which has obvious limitations in comparison to the men’s. Onia also began producing shirts, shoes, dresses, and pants with the same core values in mind.

While they do not expect their customers to go out and swim in shoes, pants, and dresses, they hope that their product yields a practical, stylish and comfortable outcome. Many other swimwear and surf companies are starting to follow this trend too.

Brands like RVCA and Billabong have been staples of the swimwear and surf industry for years. While they have made shorts, flip-flops, etc… before Onia became a company, these items tended to have a distinct style that did not mesh well outside of beach towns. Now, however, brands like these are aiming to implement a more practical product into their collection in order to expand their potential influence.

As Onia continues to grow at an exponential rate—100% growth online in the first quarter of 2018—so might their practices. In providing customers with a unique, multi-purpose wardrobe, the owners of Onia have in a sense created their own market and audience. They are now looking to expand their influence both online and in-stores based on their “long game” method of business. Co-founder Carl Cunow states “we care about trends, but we care a lot more about timeless design. I think there is a place for fast fashion, but that is not our customer”.

Unlike many other companies that seem to simply be chasing the latest trends and hits, Onia wants to make quality clothes that will last throughout whatever the freshest style may be. It is refreshing to see a company that originally marketed itself for all-purpose swimwear evolve into something much more. In an ever-changing market where companies rise and fall rapidly and fashion changes overnight, Onia plans it’s success on timeless, practical pieces of clothing. Surely other companies will begin to follow the same “underground” model that Onia has created if their success continues.

Original ideas focused on quality over quantity appear to be paying large dividends for Onia. I know I myself would appreciate a classic pair of swim trunks that can double as athletic shorts or daily wear.

Fashion Nova Men’s Collection Disappoints

In an ever-growing competitive fashion market, it is easy for companies to be left behind if they do not provide consumers with an inspiring or desirable look. Particularly in men’s fashion, it becomes easy for companies to get lazy and complacent. Fashion Nova is the latest company to fall victim to this shortcoming, as consumers and fashion experts alike were left underwhelmed with their latest men’s collection.

With a generally more limited frame-of-work than women’s fashion, men’s fashion designers often have to go above and beyond to ensure that they do not blend in with other generic types of menswear. Fashion Nova is known for their women’s clothing filled with crazy patterns and two-piece sets. Their male audience also wanted the Nova collection to be a complimentary reflection of their female counterparts—with extravagant patterns du jour. Instead of catering to the wants of the guys that support them, they went in an entirely different direction and released a relatively basic, and perhaps cringy, collection of menswear.

Twitter users took problem with two particular T-shirts with “Meme Lord” and “Tag me in memes so I know it’s real,” imprinted on the front. Instead of providing the audience with unique and trendy patterns, Nova decided to release shirts that could have been made by a seventh-grader with a home printer.

While the line obviously had some decent and wearable articles of clothing, the line as a whole left a lot to be desired. Considering Fashion Nova hyped up the line in advance, it was fair for their fans to have high expectations. High expectations can lead to severe disappointment when the company fails to reach the mark. Fashion Nova built its name creating edgy, interesting pieces for women, so it was a let-down for most that expected the company to do something similar with their men’s clothing.

In a market saturated by a plethora of companies chasing the same look, it appears as though the latest Nova Fashion Men’s collection will be lost in the crowd. Though a few laughs were to be had from the ridiculously childish set of tees about memes, the collection as a whole does not seem to bring anything new or worthwhile to the table. Several pieces can be seen as complete rip-offs from other companies, such as the belt that steals Off-White’s style, color and pattern.

A lack of creativity like this annoyed, or at least disappointed, an audience that expected so much more. The styles that have been released by Fashion Nova, excluding the direct rip-offs of several streetwear brands, are comparable to those sold at stores like H&M, Forever 21, and Rue21. Unlike Fashion Nova, however, these companies already have a solid male audience already in place and shoppers know what to expect from them. Another drawback is that Fashion Nova has a bit higher price point than any of these stores, but not nearly as bad as brands like Off-White and A Bathing Ape.

Consumers have every right to be critical of an underwhelming release from a company they expected much more out of. This is not to say that the whole collection is garbage, however. Joggers, jackets and jeans are hard to butcher, so Fashion Nova does deserve credit where it’s due. It also makes sense for customers to buy similar styles to the big name brands at a lower price. The fact that some of the styles seem childish and many others bring absolutely nothing new or noteworthy to the table is what angers consumers the most.

The collection does have its positives, but the market is already filled with so many similar styles that it’s becoming hard to tell who even makes what anymore. Eventually, as style moves on and the trends change, many companies, like Fashion Nova, will be left out if they do not offer something different from the others. At the very least, a focus on quality and low pricing would help to boost their support if they choose not to innovate new or unique styles.

 

The Importance of Men’s Body Positivity

As body positivity for women continues to expand every day for women on the internet, in stores and just in everyday conversation the conversation hasn’t necessarily shifted towards talking about body positivity for men. While more and more plus sized women break into the world of fashion and modeling the landscape is still not set for plus sized men to make their push into the forefront. When it comes to covers of magazines and runway shows this most recent New York Fashion Week incorporated a decent amount of plus-sized women’s models the men were somewhat nonexistent with only about one being featured for Asos. Asos already has a section of their website dedicated to plus-sized men and women and are taking strides in giving them fashionable options without shaming them for their bodies.

The importance of men’s body positivity when it comes to fashion is that in the fashion you want clothes that will fit cleanly and look good overall different types of body types, because you are marketing not just to people who are into fashion that are thin. A lot of people personally struggle with coming to terms that the fashion they may love and admire may not be something they can never wear. When you create a collection or a product most designers want whoever appreciates their art and image to be able to purchase and wear their product. This isn’t always the case though when it comes to high fashion designers who mostly model their clothes not just after women that are far thinner and taller than the average woman but for men that have unachievable body standards. For men, I feel it comes in a much different light than for women but male models usually consist of two different body types lean and muscular or just very thin. This becomes an issue for plus sized men when they are online and in-store shopping because they see a product on the rack or on a website and immediately know that this garment will not drape over their body the way the designer intended it to.

The whole stigma that comes with being plus sized in the world today is one that can be very degrading for people. It is something that will affect one’s confidence and the way they try to portray themselves too the world and the least they deserve is to feel confident and comfortable in the clothes they wear. The responsibility of promotion of a positive outlook on plus-sized men and women comes on that of the designers, magazines and clothing companies to find a niche for these people who still definitely have a huge voice and impact on the world of fashion. What companies like Asos providing fashion-forward options and opportunities to not just plus sized women but men even including them in their fashion week runways is something a lot of companies should take notes from. It’s going to take the effort of not just one company to change the outlook on plus-sized men in fashion and just body positivity for men in general, but I think with the trend of body positivity when it comes to women things are moving in the right direction.

RZA of the Wu-Tang Clan on the Return of Wu-Wear

When it comes to the world of fashion music is one of the biggest influences when it comes not just to people’s personal style but for the direction, fashion is moving in. One of the largest impacts that music has had on fashion was the rise of hip-hop. You can go all the way back to rappers like Slick Rick and Big Daddy popularizing over the top gold chains that were literally things only your favorite rappers could wear to groups like the Wu-Tang Clan popularizing Clarks Wallabees and Ralph Lauren’s Polo Snow Beach collection. Groups like the Wu-Tang Clan didn’t start dressing like this because of their new found money from rising through the ranks of the music industry they dressed like that because it was how they always dressed. There is something different in terms of the connection between the musician and his audience when the person listening is able to reflect how they connect with the culture. They are able to portray this in what they wear and when it is easily attainable for the listener that bond grows even stronger.

There were band tees dating back to the late 60s and early 70s that allowed a fan of a certain musical group or act to show their friends that they attending a show or went to a certain stop on the tour, but nothing that just showed that they were down with the group and the movement they were starting. Wu-Wear, the clothing line started by RZA and many other members of the Wu-Tang Clan, revolutionized this idea and perfected it in a way that would inspire many other rappers and groups to follow suit. Wu-Wear was started in 1995 after the success of the Wu-Tang Clan’s debut album Enter the Wu-Tang (36 Chambers). The clothing line was carried at stores all over the country and was a huge source of income for the entire Wu-Tang Clan, even allowing them to open their own separate retail locations in New York, Los Angeles, Atlanta, and Norfolk. Wu-Wear allowed the fans of the Wu-Tang Clan and just those that followed street fashion and street culture to get down with the Wu-Tang Clan’s movement and show their support for the group out of Staten Island. Although Wu-Wear folded in 2008 it has left a huge impact on the culture surrounding hip-hop designed and inspired clothing lines.

Today with the resurgence of 90’s hip-hop culture into the mainstream it’s only right for the return of Wu-Wear but marketed in a way that nobody would’ve expected, it’s being promoted through an event at Barney’s. The fact that Wu-Wear is coming back in a fresh new way at Barney’s, with updated designs and the focus of not just promoting the group but being on trend while still being able to respect its origins is incredible. This just goes to show you that the rich culture associated with hip-hop and rap music has ascended more than just music. Hip-hop today is regarded as one of if not the most popular genre of music today and it shows with everything around us. Barney’s which is a luxury department store that no one, not even RZA, would’ve imagined his Wu-Wear line rolling out a ten-piece collection exclusively for them is just another mark of how hip-hop music and fashion today really go hand in hand. This gives many older hip-hop heads a chance to reminisce on the early days of the Wu-Tang Clan and can cop and rock a piece of the new Wu-Wear while still allowing the younger generation to get introduced to the Wu-Tang Clan in a whole new way.

Rimowa Collaborates With Virgil Abloh’s Off-White

Virgil Abloh’s Off-White is one of the hottest brands making noise is not just in the space of fashion but accessories and now with talks of a potential Ikea collaboration, furniture. Off-White’s latest collaboration comes in the form of a premium luggage collection with world-renowned luxury luggage company Rimowa. This is a big step in the right direction for both companies.

Off-White who is coming off a stellar 2017 and 2018 with one of the biggest streetwear collaborations of the last year with its ‘The Ten’ collection with Nike. Off-White in the last year has grown immensely from their use of safety tape designs for their belts and the use of black and white striped printing on the back of their garments. They are currently one of the hottest brands within streetwear with everyone just waiting to see what Virgil Abloh will do next with his brand and if it will take a back seat after recently being appointed men’s artistic director of Louis Vuitton. With Virgil making strides not just for the world of streetwear in high fashion but for African Americans within high fashion many are watching his every move to see what he will do next to impact the culture he has been able to grow so quickly in.

Luxury luggage company Rimowa is also making huge strides in its collaborations with streetwear with this most recent Off-White collection of luggage and packing bags with Virgil’s signature words with quotations around them in the Helvetica font. Rimowa in the last year has cemented itself as the go-to luggage brand of streetwear aficionados. The way Rimowa has been able to accomplish this feat in a world where people care about having all aspects of their lifestyle fit their personal clothing style is through, obviously collaborations. Over the past year, they have collaborated with Los Angeles streetwear label Anti Social Social Club on a collection consisting of their Essential suitcase and apparel including a t-shirt, hoodie and a hat all emblazoned with the Rimowa logo. Their next even more hyped collaboration within the world of streetwear was their much anticipated with possibly the biggest streetwear brand in the world today, New York City’s very own Supreme. The collection with Supreme consisted of two different suitcases one traditionally sized suitcase with the signature Supreme box logo all over the suitcase in a black and red colorway and a carry-on suitcase with the same design. Both of these collaborations for Rimowa sold out within seconds of both their online and in-store releases, with the Supreme collaboration selling for prices of around 5,000 dollars on the second-hand market.

With both of these collaborations working out probably beyond Rimowa’s expectations naturally, their next step would be to join forces with another streetwear giant just to further establish themselves as the premier luggage brand to fans of street fashion and culture. I don’t think their collaboration with Off-White will be able to attain the same hype and buzz as their collaboration with Supreme. But having already seen the impact a collaboration with Off-White could have on the overall success of a brand and it’s products I think Rimowa is definitely headed in the right direction.

The product that Off-White and Rimowa are releasing is an interesting take on the average person’s perception of what personal luggage would be. The carry-on luggage is composed of a transparent polycarbonate that allows anyone that might see your luggage to see exactly what you have within your suitcase. This offers a new commentary on the lack of privacy that people face in society today from government surveillance and the overexposure of people’s personal lives on social media.

Finish Line agrees to $558M sale to JD Sports Fashion

Finish Line has agreed to sell itself to a United Kingdom-based sportswear company that was trying to get a foot in the US. Finish Line has made the move to try and save its slumping apparel line.

JD Sports Fashion has reached a deal to take over the Indianapolis-based Finish Line for around $558 million. Finish Line has 556 stores, as well as branded floor space in 375 Macy’s locations. The company has around 13,000 employees.

Finish Line has been struggling for some time in the declining mall foot traffic. Sales at stores open at least a year have gone down 7.9% in the company’s fourth quarter, Finish Line has stated Monday.

The environment was “more challenging than we expected,” CEO Sam Sato said in a statement.

JD Sports Fashion and Finish Line will now combine into “”a leading global, premium, a multichannel retailer of sports, fashion and outdoor brands who embraces the latest online and in-store digital technology,” Finish Line said in a statement.

Rising fashion label Don Morphy has opened up its first ever pop-up store

The Dallas-based Don Morphy the ready-to-wear menswear label announced its first ever pop-up brick and mortar store in Victory Park that will be running through April 12.

The fashion startup company has been a local success in Dallas. Daniel Mofor, founder of Dan Morphy, experience with management at Walmart helped him launch the company as a kickstart campaign in 2016. The suits and shoes are designed in the US but are handmade in Florence, Italy.

Don Morphy has notable clientele such as former Dallas Cowboys star Emmitt Smith, actor Morris Chestnut, mega-pastor T.D. Jakes, and NBA players Dwight Howard and Tyson Chandler. The label was also recently recognized by Fashion Group International of Dallas as one of the “Rising Stars” in men’s fashion.

In a New York Times profile last October, Dwight Howard said, “I have a stylist, J. Bolin, and he works with a manufacturer called Don Morphy. We sit down and go over the styles. I choose the lining, the material, the colors. It’s like a day’s worth of working on these suits before the season starts.”

“We are excited to debut the Don Morphy brand to the Victory Park community. Our Victory Park pop-up will allow our existing customers the opportunity to experience the brand in a new way, and will introduce our Italian quality and flair to a new audience,” said Don Morphy Chief Operation Officer Serge Laurent in a statement.

Pakistan fashion designers are tackling stereotypes

A handful of Pakistan designers are starting to take a bold stance on topics that are predominant in the country, trying to make it okay to think a different way. Shahnaz ki Shaadi, or Shahnaz Wedding, has kicked off a campaign for new wedding dresses but in her campaign,  she has been showing off women in their 50s with their adult children celebrating with them. In Pakistan, divorce is still a weird subject, but Shahnaz’s campaign makes it obvious that love can’t be found at any age.

“Right now is the ideal time to be in the fashion industry,” Ali Xeeshan, a designer, says, “Since the Pakistani film industry is not as big as Hollywood or Bollywood, fashion gets the spotlight here. That’s why we can really make use of the situation by highlighting social issues.”

“I think all fashion brands have a responsibility about how women see themselves,” says Khadija Rahman, Generation’s creative head, whose parents Nosheen Khan and Saad Rahman launched the brand in 1983. “Women can be seen differently — they’re all beautiful, dark, fair … There’s no one fixed standard.”

Dior confirms Kim Jones as new menswear director

The British designer Kim Jones was announced as the new artistic director of Dior Homme, just two months after he has stepped down from the menswear line of Louis Vuitton. He will be replacing Kris Van Assche, who was in the position for 11 years.

The new decision to hire Jones will be part of the first of major decisions by Pietro Beccari, chief executive of Christian Dior Couture, who joined the brand from Fendi in November.

“I am delighted to welcome Kim Jones at Dior Homme,” Mr. Beccari said in a statement, adding that Mr. Jones would “create an elegant men’s wardrobe both classic and anchored in contemporary culture.”

“I am confident that he will continue to further develop Dior Homme on a global scale,” Mr. Beccari added.

“I am deeply honored to join the house of Dior, a symbol of the ultimate elegance,” Mr. Jones said. “I am committed to create a modern and innovative male silhouette built upon the unique legacy of the house.”

Walmart stuns with new private fashion brands

Walmart has now made a massive shift to push towards online apparel to compete with Amazon. Walmart is betting on four new private fashion brands to push them to the front.

“Seeking higher margins via higher-priced goods, Walmart is looking to woo more affluent shoppers who buy technology and groceries at the chain but would typically walk past its fashion and beauty aisles,” Preston Bottomy, general manager of prestige beauty, said.

The brands launching for Walmart are Time and Tru for women, plus size label Terra & Sky, Wonder Nation for kids and also the relaunch of George, a brand exclusively for men.

Walmart, in the past, has struggled to find a good fashion niche in apparel beyond basic tee’s. As Amazon continues to spread in all categories, Walmart has started becoming more and more vulnerable to the online giant, as their competitor constantly betters price and convenience.

According to Matthew Kaness, the new executive in residence and vice president of Walmart US e-commerce, the retail brand is taking a more curated approach to enhancing its product mix across all categories.

Paris Fashion Museum gets new director

Director of the Palias Galliera for the last eight years, Olivier Saillard turned the city of Paris’s fashion museum into a must visit event, thanks to ideas from performance pieces by Tilda Swinton to the very first Azzedine Alaïa retrospective in the city. The fashion community was hit with a curveball when he decided to step down and quit in January to become the director of J.M. Weston, the French luxury men’s shoe company.

The person who took his place was the relatively unknown Spaniard named Miren Arzalluz, a political historian and who has honed her curating skills for eight years as the head of the Cristóbal Balenciaga Foundation in Getaria, Spain. She ultimately pursued the new job because “this job was really going back to my thing.”

“I studied history, worked at a British think tank, earned my master’s in comparative politics at the London School of Economics. It was just after 9/11. The world was in such turmoil. I started going to the Victoria & Albert Museum for fashion exhibitions. Then I remember walking into the National Portrait Gallery bookshop and seeing a whole section on fashion history. It was a revelation. When you study history, it’s to be a social or political historian. But fashion? That was something that I had never dreamt of. I went to the Courtauld Institute of Art in Somerset House for a master’s in history of dress, and fell in love with the subject. I thought: “Oh, this is what I want to do.””

Vivienne Westwood apologizes for stealing t-shirt

The popular British fashion house recently posted on their Instagram account apologizing for stealing the graphics of two young designers.

Vivienne Westwood has based T-shirts in its Fall 2018 collection on the creations of two young designers, named Louise Gray and Rottingdean Bazaar.

The London house, which took Anthony Knight to court in 2012 for trademark and copyright infringement for copying some of Westwood’s famous punk orb logos and slogans, posted the following apology followed by the image of the original Rottingdean Bazaar T-shirt and the copied design side by side.

Paris Fashion Week gets dark at Givenchy

The red carpet has finally moved on from the time’s up blackout, but there have recently been some interesting pieces in the Givenchy and Elie Saab collections during Paris Fashion Week.

Claire Waight Keller, Givenchy designer in her sophomore season, has taken over the reins for Riccardo Tisci with a different mood, taking her inspiration from the 80’s Berlin. She turned the halls in the Paris Palace of Justice into a dark and moody maze, with models walking down in big curtains of black, slate and blue as spotlights hovered over them.

Waight Keller took inspiration from David Bowie, Stranger Things and Noomi Rapace. Waight Keller started the show with louche faux furs cinched with patent belts before turning on the sharp-cut dresses that would fit right in Germany ’83. Pencil skirts and oversized animal prints followed right behind, with both men and women in shiny trousers.

The men’s looks were mostly tailored, with the exception of the puffy white coat. The oversized equipment handled bags that were carried by the men will most likely cross over.

Fashion designer thinks outside the box

Jun Takahashi may or may not have discovered a solution for fashion. Takahashi has managed to create a collection that merges streetwear with athleisure and luxury. His Fall 2018 collection for Undercover is a major example of what many design houses should aspire to do.

The designer showed Undercover in a big white tent with clear plastic walls in the center of Paris. His fashion was in the very middle of things and not bouncing around the edges. Takahashi took much inspiration from college, as that is a time for experimentation.

Takahashi has figured out a way to blend all the elements of street style, comfort, youthfulness, nonchalance and cool, and he turned them into clothes that can be related to by anyone. He didn’t do too much and chose establishment over rebelliousness but synchronized the two in such a way that it worked out for the better.

Simone Porte Jacquemus set to launch men’s line

Simon Porte Jacquemus has finally revealed his new professional challenge that he has been hinting at on his social media: the launch of his very own menswear line.

The designer announced the news at his Paris fall show by taking a bow in a sweatshirt that read “New Job L’Homme Jacquemus” at his women’s ready-to-wear show.

He won’t be presenting his first creations until Paris men’s fashion week in June, and it has yet to be determined if he will have a show or a presentation for the line.

“I see the Jacquemus man as I see the Jacquemus woman: it’s a sincere story,” Jacquemus told WWD:

“I didn’t do men’s until now because I didn’t feel the need to do men’s and I couldn’t imagine it. I fell in love and I started to imagine that the Jacquemus man exists. I did Jacquemus women’s for my mother, and while I’m not saying that the men’s collection will be all about my boyfriends, it will still always be a love story.”

The designer has used social media as the main outlet for communications since he launched his brand in 2009 after dropping out of fashion school due to his mother’s death (Jacquemus is her maiden name).

Since then, Jacquemus has become one of the most talented young designers on the Paris stage.

Jacquemus has predicted that adding a men’s line would change the mood of the brand. “This is going to change Jacquemus a little in the sense that it’s much more forward-looking, because there is a lot of melancholy in the women’s collections, for obvious reasons,” he said.

Drones replace models during Dolce & Gabbana Fashion Show

Dolce & Gabbana has managed to make human runway models a boring trend by replacing them with technology on the runway.

When the show started at the D&G Fall-Winter Men’s Fashion Show in Milan, a horde of drones carrying handbags glided down the catwalk. The drones were accompanied on the side by people who wore white lab coats.

Attendees during the show were asked to turn off the Wi-Fi on their phones, including personal hotspots.

“A comically impossible task for a room full of influencers made famous by the Internet, all of whom speak different languages,” according to The Cut’s Emilia Petrarca, who attended the weekend show.

G&D was not the only brand to add high-tech technology to the mix. Alessandro Michele unveiled his own Gucci Cyborg. His show included small dragons and models carrying 3D-printed versions of their own heads.

Suitsupply celebrates same sex love in new campaign

Suitsupply, a men’s tailoring brand founded in 2000 by Fokke de Jong in Amsterdam, has shown off its new imagery for their Spring/Summer 2018 campaign which put the spotlight on gay couples.

The campaign is set to display in over 100 stores across 22 countries and is also currently at the front of their website, which Jong has said could have a negative impact on the business where LGBTQ people are not accepted:

“The attraction between people is an important part of fashion advertising. A campaign featuring the attraction between men was long overdue and particularly relevant for our brand.”

The new collection is available in stores and online. It features linen cotton blended suits, checked jackets, lightweight bombers, and it brings new colors into the mix.

Fosun International buys France’s oldest fashion house

The Chinese powerhouse Fosun International has recently bought a majority stake in the French fashion brand Lanvin.

The purchase was announced in a statement this past Thursday. The Shanghai company owns a wide range of brands including Club Med resorts and the men’s label Caruso.

Lanvin, founded in 1899, is the oldest fashion house in France. The brand has been bought by Shaw-Lan Wang in 2001, which turned it into a global brand.

Chinese businesses are looking to expand their portfolio of luxury European brands. Back in January, it was revealed that Shandong Ruyi Group were the leading bidders for the Swiss luxury handbag company Bally. The French crystal maker Baccarat was bought by the Chinese group, Fortune Fountain Capital in June last year.

According to the firm, Bain & Co., luxury sales have grown in China by 20 percent last year, with a third of the sales coming from Chinese consumers.

Zadig & Volataire bring street French twist to New York Fashion Week

New York Fashion Week usually encapsulates bedlam, but for one French label, it’s very very different. An hour before the Zadig & Voltaire’s runway show, models, dressers, hair and makeup stylists were still prepping to make sure the show ran smoothly.

“I’m a perfectionist,” said Cecilia Bönström, 47, the brand’s artistic director.  “Even though I have a creative job, I like everything to be really clear; I like to follow a schedule.”

Zasig & Voltaire is a French brand that prides itself on offering styles that are filled with streetwise edge and easiness.

“This season, my message is to confirm that Zadig & Voltaire is the contemporary rock ‘n’ roll brand,” Bönström explained. “For me, the girls are very delicate but, at the same time, very rock. There are a lot of legs, a lot of skin. There are leather and knitwear with perfect, sexy cocktail dresses.”

This year, Zadig & Voltaire is celebrating its 20th anniversary, a benchmark that is rarely ever achieved, especially in luxury fashion. With fashion fluctuating now that more of the spending habits have shifted, many labels are struggling to keep a grip on the fashion world. The reason Zadig & Voltaire’s does so well is that even when there are trends coming and going, the company sticks to its core aesthetic and value, something the label’s founder, Thierry Gillier, learned very early on:

“When I came to America, on Madison Avenue, it was very difficult. Everything was more classic than what we were showing. Slowly, that changed. The look today is very inspired by the street. For me, it was obvious that the fashion business would change. The clothes were very stiff and rigid, and I wanted to make it more relaxed.”

Designer label Preen launches collection

Preen, the catwalk label designed by the husband and wife duo Justin Thornton and Thea Bregazzi and worn by the Duchess of Cambridge and Gwyneth Paltrow, has finally launched a collection which has quickly become London fashion week’s most affordable collection. Prices start at 65 p.

Preen’s collection only has around 6 styles or pieces. It is made in the shape of a postage stamp as a six-stamp collection celebrating 20 years of the brand.

The first-class stamp features the red Finella dress which was worn by the duchess on a royal tour of Canada. The “Power Dress” that first made the label well-known is shown on another stamp.

Preen left the super tight bandage dress behind about a decade ago and has ushered in new calf-length hemlines and looser fabric that have dominated modern fashion aesthetics.

Models carry own heads for Gucci show

It’s a given that fashion insiders have long been jaded about the fashion week festivities. Most can say they’ve seen it all or notice it’s been done before, but that can’t be said about Gucci’s most recent fashion show.

Gucci’s show, besides the grandparent’s clothes, was unique and different. The show featured a couple of models carrying their own severed heads down the runway.  There has been no clear indication as to why and how they decided to add this to the show, but it sure did draw a lot of attention.

The show even included a model carrying a baby dragon down the runway, for which we still don’t know the reason. Nonetheless, the show was creatively put together and you can give much credit to Gucci creative director Alessandro Michele.

Black Panther’s opening weekend was meant for African fashion

Black Panther was a movie we saw bound to be set for a fashion movement. The Marvel film is one of kind filled with all black leads, which features the fashion icon Lupita Nyong’o, but the film itself takes a ton of inspiration from a full list of African groups. The list includes Maasai, Toureg, Akan, Mursi and Ndebele.

“We knew Black Panther wasn’t going to be just any other movie,” Mohammed-Hanif Abdulai of Ghana told Racked via email. “It was a movie about representation, culture, and diversity; a movie that had a message. In that spirit, we decided we were not going to treat this as just any other movie premiere.”

Abdulai has a company called Wildrness Productions which produces film reviews called Couch Critics. Their Twitter feed was filled with what Ghanaians wore to see Black Panther. Abdulai exlained:

“We asked our fans to come dressed in their best regal attires and they didn’t disappoint, showing up in their fine kente, batakari, dashikis, wax prints, ahenema adorned with rich jewelry, and beautiful drumming and dancing. We proudly turned the lobby of the cinema into a beautiful cultural fest. Ghanaians showed the world how proud they were of their culture.”

Black Panther wasn’t just a stable for African fashion, but it also allowed many people of African descent to show off their heritage without being criticized. Take Paris-born New Yorker Esther-Lauren Mutolo, a stylist, for example: instead of wearing a pro-black statement shirt, she went with an outstanding African print. She commented on how she felt about the piece:

“When I came across this jumpsuit in a local boutique, I immediately fell in love. This jumpsuit reminds me of everything I was told not to be in life as a black woman. It is loud, obnoxious, eye-catching, and colorful. It represents my personality in its truest form. For years, I was told to be quiet and fit in with society’s definition of what a woman of color should be. When I wore that jumpsuit, I felt like I was defying every expectation set upon me by society. I felt beautiful and black.”

“This is more than just a movie for us,” Mutolo says. “This is about being acknowledged for something that is not directly tied to slavery or some sort of white suppression. Black Panther is about black people getting a chance to be themselves… Black Panther gave blacks a chance to let loose and wear their most obnoxious, vibrant outfit without being judged.”

Queen of England goes to her first ever fashion show

The Queen of England attended her first ever fashion show this past week. The show was for Richard Quinn and his Fall 2018 collection.

The Queen wasn’t there just to be stunned by magnificent fashion designs but rather to hand out the first ever Queen Elizabeth II Award for British Design. It’s meant to highlight the role that the fashion industry plays in society and diplomacy.  It recognizes young artistic and entrepreneurial talent.

Richard Quinn may not be a recognizable name, but what he has accomplished is far from average. Between winning fashion awards from H&M and being the recipient of part of the Sarahslist (which highlights the talent of designers), he has also been giving back to his community. Many companies referred to him as “one to watch” last year.

Quinn ultimately delivered a unique show with his tendency to cover the models’ faces, but nonetheless, he did enough to capture the attention of many, including the Queen of England.

Model who brought down Harvey Weinstein returns to runway

Ambra Battilana Gutierrez, the Italian model who helped bring down the movie mogul Harvey Weinstein by reporting him to the police back in 2015, is getting her career back on track.

Gutierrez will be taking the runway at the 2018 New York Fashion Week on Wednesday after having spent several years being rejected by designers after her allegation became public. She said in a recent interview that it became so hard for her to land a gig because of the incident.

“I had castings with Armani and Cavalli and Dsquared2 — these are the ones that really build your portfolio,” she said. “After that it was so difficult to even get normal brands to work with — it was a disaster.”

 

Real love don’t know how to talk ? @antoineverglas #Love

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Gutierrez states that the slip of her career caused her to develop depression and gain weight, hampering her modeling career.

“I saw so many shows with girls that looked exactly like me and nobody ever tried to send my photos out because it was so difficult to sell me because my name was bad,” she said. “It was impossible because (designers) didn’t want to hurt their brands.”

But now that Weinstein has been convicted of the allegations, work has finally been coming Gutierrez’s way, and she can finally get her career back on track.

Chanel and Farfetch team up for digital push

French label Chanel has taken a minority stake in the London-based online retailer Farfetch, the company announced on Monday, as part of a tie to develop digital services on their website like chats to connect the label’s clients with store assistants.

Luxury companies worldwide have all been trying to expand and extend their digital services to bring in younger clients. Chanel is the only company that hadn’t made a big push to shopping online by deciding not to pursue more web sales.

The deal between Farfetch and Chanel does not include Chanel selling its clothes on Farfetch’s website but rather working together to create digital services linked to customer service.

“This is about how to enrich our relationship with our customers,” Pavlovsky told Reuters, adding that Chanel was not trying to monitor the clients but rather offering to give more tailor-made assistance to those who wanted it.

“The challenge for our luxury industry is that our clients are used to ultra-personalized experiences,” Farfetch’s Portuguese founder and Chief Executive Jose Neves said. “When you walk into a store, people don’t know you.”

Anthony Davis and Saks Fifth Avenue celebrate newest fashion collection

Anthony Davis was in Los Angeles because of the NBA All-Star game but also to visit the Chateau Marmont in West Hollywood on Thursday night to celebrate his latest fashion collection, Saks Fifth Avenue x Anthony Davis.

“This city is amazing,” he told The Times. “The people are amazing. I actually stay here in the summertime. I love the weather. It’s, in my opinion, the best city in the United States. Over Miami, [over] everything, you know?”

A huge group of influencers all gathered to commemorate Davis’ latest luxury capsule collection, which was first debuted in 2016.

“Every piece is unique,” Davis said. “Every time we put a collection out there, we want it to be unique and different from the last — and a little unique and different from what everybody else is doing. I’m excited about it.”

Davis’ newest collection is available exclusively at Saks Fifth Avenue stores and at Saks.com

“As a guy who’s tall, it’s hard to find clothes,” laughed Davis, who is 6-foot-10. “I thought [this collaboration] was the perfect opportunity to try to showcase my style with a great brand like Saks…. It’s been great for me to get another side of me out there instead of basketball.”

“We are proud of how the Saks Fifth Avenue collection ― our private label offering ― has grown over the past few years, evolving into one of our top performing menswear brands at Saks,” Louis DiGiacomo, general merchandise manager for men’s, said in a statement. “And, since 2016, we’ve been partnering with Anthony on the Saks Fifth Avenue x Anthony Davis capsule collections that have an athletic-inspired, youthful sensibility … And our customers love it.”

Anti-fur protester crashes London Fashion Week

PETA and anti-fur protesters have become a presence at many Fashion Weeks over the past couple of years, but none of the demonstrators made it inside to the actual show. At Mary Katrantzou’s show at London Fashion Week, one anti-fur protester actually made it into the building and onto the runway.

As shown in the video, the protester was escorted off the runway as models continued to walk down it. What made the situation so ironic was that the Mary Katrantzou show was actually fur-free.

David Beckham and co. sit front row at Victoria Beckham’s Fashion Week show

Victoria Beckham’s line was set to show at New York Fashion Week, but it wouldn’t be a proper event without her family sitting front row to watch in awe. David Beckham and three of the kids, Romeo, 15, Cruz, 12, and Harper, 6, all attended the James Burden Mansion on Manhattan’s Upper East Side as Victoria Beckham showed off her Autumn/Winter 2018 collection.

After the models were done, Victoria Beckham walked out to greet the crowd in an all-black ensemble and also gave every one of her family members a quick kiss.

The whole family was sporting looks. David Beckham, who just launched a soccer team in Miami, went with a classic black suit and tie, and the two sons wore long coats. The daughter was rocking a more stylish look with a white dress and burgundy coat, with her hair in two French braids.

The only one missing from the family event was Brooklyn, 18, who moved to New York to study photography. Despite the absence of the oldest child, both parents gave him a shout out on their social media pages.

Men’s New York Fashion Week was crypto-inspired

Some of the men’s shows at New York Fashion Week are showing signs of a potential kick start to crypto high fashion. Meanwhile, the wait times between the shows are providing time and opportunity for attendees to discuss the recent crypto market dip.

The Belgian fashion designer and icon Raf Simons’ runway show was described by the Financial Times as “looking like the inner sanctum of a boiler room, where brokers pitch their clients on penny stocks and digital currencies with a Machiavellian zeal.”

Simons showed off slim cut three-button suits, topcoats paired with some type of surgical gloves and rubber boots. The runway was also filled with turtlenecks with slits. Some of them had patches with three letter acronyms like XTC and GHB. “One was just a letter off” from a Bitcoin code, the Financial Times jokingly said.

The Financial Times said Simon’s clothing could “fit easily on today’s youngest investors, who don’t stick to the Kiton and Zegna suits of their fathers and prefer Coinbase to TD Ameritrade.”

TD Ameritrade surprisingly advertised Bitcoin futures during their ad, which aired during the Super Bowl.

Tom Ford showed “Wall Street-approved pleated trousers” paired with snakeskin printed ties. The Ford show ended with models showing off the company’s new launch of underwear, which included silk boxers in different metallic and animal prints.

Vic Mensa, IDK and King Combs hit New York Fashion Week runway

Music and Fashion are two things that almost always go hand in hand, especially when its rap music. It was no surprise that some artist hit the runway showing off new fashion looks. Some of the artists included Vic Mensa, IDK and King Combs.

King Combs sported looks for Philipp Plein. “Walk it like I talk it,” Combs wrote on Instagram.

IDK for Pyer Moss 2018.

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Mensa and IDK were both on the runway for Pyer Moss’ new collection with Reebok. “Incredibly honored to be a part of this moment,” Mensa wrote on Instagram. “We’ve been kept out of so many industries that it makes it that much more impactful when we reach those levels, u feel me?”

Ralph Lauren heads to Jamaica during New York Fashion

After Ralph Lauren finished its job as the official outfitter for Team USA at the Olympics, the company was left to wonder what was next.

Ralph Lauren went to a retreat in Montego Bay to look for inspiration for his spring and summer collections for both men and women.

What came from it was spectacular. The show was filled with barefoot models, looks that screamed beachy feels, and a lot of the classics from Ralph Lauren. The clothes included the yellows and greens of the island country’s flag and pennants, along with spots of red and blue in bold, graphic designs. There were even yachts on wide ties and practically everywhere else.

“Everyone wishes for a magical place where they can step out of time into the beauty of nature,” Lauren said in a press release. “For Spring 2018, I wanted to share the mood, the light, the blue and white freshness of my retreat in Jamaica. My collections for women and men conjure up the carefree, sophisticated style of this special experience—exuberant, luxurious, timeless!”

The clothes reflected the words spoken by Ralph Lauren. It was shown in the cotton and silks, stripes and tie dye. There were leather shorts and jackets that were meant for an afternoon deckside of a tropical downpour. The predictable whites even looked fitting for any occasion.

Nike Air Monarch is a fashion sneaker now

John Elliot just designed one of the best fashion sneakers with the newly revamped Nike Air Monarch for his Fall-Winter 2018 show.

The Air Monarch is so entwined with the dad look that many believed it couldn’t cross into the fashion world, but the shoe quickly proved those nonbelievers wrong. The shoe has already been seen on the feet of OKC Thunder basketball player Russell Westbrook.

The show appeals to the masses with its unconventional oversize shape and mundane colorway. The shoe debuted at John Elliott’s Fall-Winter 2018 runway show while adding three new colorways.

The difference between the new Monarchs and the old version is in the details. The most notable detail for the new design is the smaller swoosh, allowing the colorway to take up all the attention. The “Air” logo is gone from the back, and the midsole shape is designed just a tad differently.

The shoes have yet to be announced to have gone on sale but will most likely make a splash in the current market of ugly sneakers.

Men’s street style stats might make man berets a trend

This year, the New York Fashion Week: men’s has been tied to the women’s show to make for a 10 day long fashion marathon. This allows smaller brands to be shown alongside big fashion juggernauts like Marc Jacobs and Calvin Klein. Just as with previous years, however, the streetwear styles kicked off the season by catching eyes with no help provided. So far for the 2018 shows, their new gimmicks have proven to be just as fashionable as they were last summer, which brought in fanny packs, cross body bags and Hawaiian shirts.

So far for the winter season, the looks include berets, coats that are dazzling with how well they were tailored, panels of mirrored armor and full-on balaclava.

To see the shots of the streetwear styles, click here.

David Jones shows off what is to come for men’s fashion

David Jones recently held their Autumn/Winter womenswear and menswear collection at the Sydney Carriageworks. The event is always filled with celebrities and air kisses, so it is always an interesting event during this time of year.

Recently, during most of these sorts of events, menswear has hardly shown up and has been very underwhelming; however, at David Jones’ show, there were glimpses of hope that this year might be a change for the ever so boring menswear market.

This year, the menswear fashion show was led by male model Jordan Barret. This season’s show focused on layers and earth tones. Green coats, burgundy checks and sleek black suits were shown throughout the show.  This show could have arguably been the best collection from the Australian retailer in years.

David Jones’ International Menswear designer collection was also a very impressively styled selection that has been introduced in recent years. That collection was filled with wool hats, heavy frame aviator glasses, green coats and patent leather brogues.

This season might prove big time for the Australian brand.

H&M falling out of favor

H&M has been on a downhill tumble both financially and in the public’s eye since the racial ad and following events. It was clearly evident in Hennes & Mauritz Ab’s recent annual report, and it’ll worsen in the following months if H&M continues down this slippery slope. In the recent review of the latest financial results, Karl-Johan Persson, CEO of H&M’s parent company, commented:

“The weakness was in H&M’s physical stores where the changes in customer behavior are being felt most strongly and footfall has reduced with more sales online. In addition, some imbalances in certain aspects of the H&M brand’s assortment and composition also contributed to this weaker result.”

With more disappointment to follow, the company has announced it will close 170 stores, their largest number since 1998; however, they also will be opening 390 new ones. The company did not state which stores will be closing but they did hint that they are located within their major market, which the U.S. and Germany fall under.

Consumers, however, aren’t reading the financial reports but rather reading the look of H&M’s messy brick and mortar stores. Some believe that part of the reason H&M is struggling is their lack of keeping up with the fashion scene. Michael Dart, co-author of “Retail’s Seismic Shift,” elaborated:

“Consumers have felt that H&M has been somewhat drab and not on trend as much as competitors. With slower supply chain (unlike super-fast Zara), they have not responded as quickly to rapid shifts in taste and increasing fragmentation in the consumer market with many more small segments. As a result, they have had more markdowns, promotions and less inspiration for the consumer. It’s a formula for sagging results.”

The problem could lie with other factors, but for the time being it is safe to say H&M is on the come down after many years of successful fast fashion.

Reebok launches Always Classic campaign

Reebok has launched an ad campaign called Always Classic. The athletic line brought together a collective consisting of Lil Yachty, Gigi Hadid, Teyana Taylor, Ariana Grande and Rae Sremmurd. The star of the whole collection featured a re-installment of a new model of Freestyle Hi. The new collection is sure to catch some eyes, especially with a star-studded lineup of celebrities.

H&M is calling its newest brand “paradise” for discount treasure hunters

H&M’s newest brand collection will be on sale from the start. After the Swedish company’s plunge in profits for six years, the company announced that it will soon offer a new off-price marketplace called Afound.

H&M describes the new outlet as a “style- and deal-hunting paradise” that will begin selling discounted clothes and lifestyle items from H&M group’s own labels, which also include offshoots such as COS and Cheap Monday, as well as outside labels. The first Afound store will open up in Stockholm, Sweden in 2018, along with a new website.

H&M is entering a profitable category. According to Euromonitor, the global off-price market grew more than 30% between the years 2012 and 2017, going up to $62 billion. The U.S. owns the biggest share with 80% of the total.

Considering that big retailers such as Nordstrom have had much success in the discount business, H&M’s move is different from the mega brand because it is a fashion brand selling clothes from other brands.  H&M has yet to state what other brands will be sold alongside theirs or if they are planning on buying overstock and out-out-season items directly from the brands.

The company surely needs a boost of some kind to pick up its declining growth. H&M took too long to build its e-commerce and has realized it has way too many brick and mortar stores. It has also been outmatched in speed by digital competitors such as ASOS, BooHoo and longtime rival company Zara, thus leaving H&M stores filled with unwanted clothes.

Off-price retail, meanwhile, has shown an increasing attractiveness over the years. “Coincidentally enough, it looks very similar to the same reasons that people shop online too,” Tim Barrett, a retail analyst at market research provider Euromonitor, wrote.

Condé Nast creates new fashion and beauty networks

Condé Nast has been forming fashion and beauty networks across its platforms. Celia Ellenberg, Vogue’s beauty director, and Jenny Bailly, Allure’s executive beauty director, will be in charge of the beauty network. Rickie de Sole, W’s fashion market and accessories director, and Virginia Smith, Vogue’s fashion market and accessories director, will be in charge of the fashion aspect. All the directors will continue to hold their original titles but with additional duties.

The new structure is set up as a resource for Condé to help smaller brands that don’t have their own fashion or beauty departments, such as their brand Condé Nast Traveler. The idea closely resembles the way the company combined its creative, copy and research teams across all titles back in 2016. In 2017, the company reorganized its business side and cut around 100 jobs. Back in November, Condé Nast cut around 80 positions, reduced the number of print titles and closed off Teen Vogue’s print edition.

It has been very apparent that new editors in chief Radhika Jones and Samantha Barry want to make staffing changes. One of the upcoming tasks awaiting the new hires will be finding ways to reduce budgets even further.

Brooke Shields joins the fashion world

Brooke Shields is an actress, model and author who has spent most of her life growing up in the fashion world. This very reason was why she wanted to add another title to her long resume.

Shields is going to be designing a collection for QVC called Brooke Shields Timeless. It will be available to see on Feb. 15 but won’t be purchasable until Mar. 14. The actress will be on-air showing off her creations, which she got with the help of the KBL Group International, a New York-based apparel company.

The actress is planning on previewing her apparel and accessories collection to media outlets at The Beekman in New York on Wednesday evening.

Shields has shown that she is a hands-on designer by having a say in every aspect of her collection. She has an office at KBL and was often up there, late at night, e-mailing back and forth with her partners. The 52-year-old actress elaborated:

“I’m involved in every button, every zipper, every seam, every hem and every pocket. The whole thing is initiated by an aesthetic I have, and working with the manufacturer and QVC themselves. They have a great deal of input. What’s been so refreshing is they [QVC and KBL] have really consulted me on everything.”

Shields has been approached by companies before, but they were only interested in her name and refused to listen to her input. Doug Howe, chief merchandising officer for QVC Group, had a different reaction:

“When we first heard Brooke speak about her collection, we were blown away by her passion and her attention to even the tiniest detail. Each and every piece of this line is special to Brooke and she’s had her hand in every design decision, from stitch, colors to prints. We feel confident that her excitement will appeal to our customers and that her stories will inspire them.”

Shields continued:

“This has been a cumulative effort over the years on my part. Every show that I’ve ever done, every television show, every Broadway show, there’s a whole fit process and it doesn’t matter what you’re buying. You could be buying something off the rack at a discount store or you can be putting on haute couture of some famous designer. And they all can be tweaked and can look better.”

“It’s years of understanding that maybe I’m a little short-waisted, or maybe I’m long-waisted, or maybe I need a rise to be a little longer to bring your attention to my waist, my hips, whatever. The beauty of fitting these varied models is you watch these women of all sizes be able to not at all jeopardize their aesthetic or their look or line because it fits. It’s been such a revelation for me.”

Shields is hoping for the collection be a success in order for her to become even more involved in the fashion world.

‘Black Panther’ premiere filled with stars and standout outfits

The “Black Panther” cast and attendants of the premiere stuck with the theme of the movie and dressed up as characters of the fictional nation of Wakanda. The attendees kept with the “royal attire” theme and showed up on the purple carpet in a massive display of regal, African-inspired outfits.

Taking inspiration from the film’s costumes (which were all designed by Oscar-winning costume designer Ruth E. Carter), Lupita Nyong’o channeled her character, Nakia, while wearing a purple, custom-made Atelier Versace chiffon gown which had a gold metal hardware harness that looked like armor. Chadwick Boseman, who plays the Wakandan ruler T’Challa, looked the part in a black and gold blazer made by Emporio Armani.

Letitia Wright plays Princess Shuri. Her character interpretation came in the form of a black-and-white embroidered Bibhu Mohapatra gown, which stylist Ade Samual helped pick.

The brilliant @letitiawright, aka Shuri, on the purple carpet!

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“We talked about what the movie meant and how strong it was and wanted to give that same powerful feel to Letitia’s look on the red carpet,” said the stylist, who took inspiration from her own Nigerian roots while researching the theme before landing on the ethereal, embellished number for Wright. “Letitia plays such a riveting character and she brings a light to the role. Keeping her fresh and young was the idea.”

The cast weren’t the only people dressing for the occasion. Yara Shahidi wore a youthful, white Etro gown and Christian Louboutin sandals, while British-Nigerian actor David Oyelowo wore a traditional dashiki. “Insecure’s” Issa Rae showed out for the occasion in a pleated white Rosie Assoulin dress with rainbow-colored panels, paired with Giuseppe Zanotti metallic shoes.

Long live the king. #BlackPanther @chadwickboseman

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Even actor and musician Janelle Monáe worked with stylist Alexandra Mandelkorn to put her own spin to the theme while maintaining her own persona.  “Something black and white, but also something sculptural and avant-garde that felt very regal,” explains Mandelkorn. She then went with a billowing skirt paired with a top featuring two-tone sleeves. Monáe finished the look with an Erickson Beamon tribal choker and a traditional black kufi cap filled with gold embroidery.

“It looks like a crown,” Mandelkorn said. “It was very fitting for the theme.”

The Dutch now have fashion police

The Dutch have implemented a new pilot program in the city of Rotterham in the Netherlands. The new program allows officers to confiscate designer clothes from young men who, based on the judgement of the officer, don’t look like they are able to afford them.

City ombudsman Anne Mieke Zwaneveld told the AD that the plan is going to be the start of a slippery slope into ethnic profiling.

Quartz News reported that while there may still be legal reviews of what the police can keep, they’ll still be taking the clothes from the suspects at the moment.

“We’re going to undress them on the street,” Frank Paauw, chief of Rotterdam police, told De Telegraaf. He later added that the suspects often act untouchable and that their flashy clothes send the wrong signal to the other residents in Rotterham.

“We know they have clothes that are too expensive to wear with the money they get,” a spokesperson for the department said. “We’re going to look at how they get those clothes, where did they buy them, from where the money came that they buy them.”

The most wearable trends from men’s fashion month

Every season there are styles that are meant to be outspoken and bold, but this is not the attire we expect to see on an everyday person. We’re here for the most wearable ongoing trends of this coming season.

Plaid

The fact that plaid was everywhere in the AW18 show in Paris indicates that you should be wearing it this autumn. Balenciaga had long plaid overcoats and patchwork plaid streetwear.

Corduroy Trousers

Corduroy trousers were the worst thing as a child, but lately, designers can’t get enough of them. During the Milan show, there were hundreds of versions of corduroy on the runway. Even streetwear brands like Palm Angels were getting in on the corduroy action.

Leather

Leather has always and will always be around, but this year it was a sight to see, ranging from knights and armor inspired leather at Les Hommes to the luxury leather at Berluti. Leather was worked into jackets, pants and even on some shirts. There was also a smaller theme of leather paneling and detailing among the lines.

Oversize

Proportion was a big thing for all designers, and this year we saw tons of new ways to shape clothes to make a statement. The biggest trend for this was oversized coats outerwear and knitwear. Oversized might be the way to go next winter.

Tom Ford to show menswear at New York Fashion Week

Tom Ford will be taking the final spot for menswear in the New York Fashion Week calendar on Feb. 6 with a runway show. It will start at 8 p.m. at the Park Avenue Armory, which will immediately follow Joseph Abboud at 7 p.m.

Although Ford has shown menswear in New York in the past, this will mark the first time the designer has shown his menswear collection exclusively at this event. His last New York show was back in September 2017 when he started New York Fashion Week with a women’s show at the Armory. His Spring 2018 menswear line was shown in Milan.

The Council of Fashion Designers of America decided last month to push the dates of the New York Fashion Week Men’s to Feb. 5 through Feb. 7, which then allows the women’s calendar to precede immediately afterward. This new schedule will create one big 10-day calendar.

The addition of Ford to the mix gives the fashion event a boost to the men’s portion, which it desperately needed. So far, the lineups have been filled with emerging labels but not so many established brands. The big names this season will be Raf Simons, Abboud, Perry Ellis and Hugo Boss.

Ralph & Russo present a fairytale for Paris Fashion Week

The simple aesthetic of Ralph & Russo, the only extant British haute couture house, can apparently be put into elegant dresses. The house capped off their show with an off-white duchess satin gown with a draped bodice, long train encrusted with leaves of Swarovski crystals and a lace veil embroidered with silk petals.

Ralph & Russo is the only brand that dedicates itself to the grand British couture tradition of Hardy Amies and Norman Hartnell. These two designers moved from Australia and London, where their business has existed as one of British fashion’s biggest brands since it opened back in 2007. The brand is now an employer of more than 400 people, with a townhouse in Mayfair for fittings and a large atelier where the embroidery department consists of 30 people.

Most of their clients expected fairytale-esque designs, and that is exactly what they got during their Paris fashion show. The show was filled with frothy mint organza, blush pink silk gaza and ice blue Chantilly lace.

The show was filled with extraordinary outfits and outshone others. It gave names like Vertigo, Psychose and Illusion, but one silhouette that stood out was the one Grazia Chiuri made for Dior. The slim balletic torso with the simple, functional elegance of a leotard gives way to a soft, A-line midi-length hem. The silhouette took forms of long belted coats, blouses, skirts and lingerie-style gowns.

Hedi Slimane enters the fashion scene by joining Céline

In a shocking announcement this past Sunday, LVMH announced that Hedi Slimane will join Céline starting Feb. 1 this year. The designer will be the director of artistic, creative and image, and he will expand the LVMH label’s offering into menswear, couture and fragrance. The first collection he will show for the brand will be in September during Paris Fashion Week.  Slimane will be taking over for Phoebe Philo, who announced she would be leaving the brand after its Autumn 2018 presentation in March. Bernard Arnault, LVMH chairman and chief executive, commented in a statement:

“I am particularly happy that Hedi is back within the LVMH Group and taking the reins of our Céline maison. He is one of the most talented designers of our time. I have been a great admirer of his work since we collaborated on Dior Homme, which he launched to global critical acclaim in the 2000s. His arrival at Céline reinforces the great ambitions that LVMH has for this maison.”

Slimane has worked with Dior Homme, who he brought back to life both in 2000 and 2007. He left the brand to launch his own label, before which he worked with Saint Laurent.

“I am delighted to join Bernard Arnault in this all-embracing and fascinating mission for Céline,” Slimane said. “I greatly look forward to returning to the exciting world of fashion and the dynamism of the ateliers.”

“Hedi Slimane is an exceptional designer, complete artist and passionate about his work,” Sidney Toledano, the man who made Dior a powerhouse for over 20 years, said. “I am certain that he will bring his renowned creative energy and discipline to lead Céline to ever greater success.”

Bella Hadid makes special appearances during Paris Men’s Fashion Week

Palestinian-American model Bella Hadid was at Paris Men’s Fashion Week walking the streets in a mix of fashion-forward outfits and was even seen with Hollywood stars like Josh Harnett and Robert Pattinson.

Chanel designer Karl Lagerfeld and Pattinson saw the model on the front row of the Dior Homme show who made many headlines with her sharp black suit and lingerie.

DIOR HOMME BY SIR KRIS THE GREAT

A post shared by ? (@bellahadid) on

The 21-year-old model, who is the face of Dior Beauty and almost always seen with Kendall Jenner, wore a pair of the label’s new trainers, Dior Homme Runners. According to some media outlets, she thus committed a somewhat rare fashion faux pas.

Hadid posted her praise for the Dior show on her Instagram, which has 16 million followers: “seriously stunned to see your work move in real life, Kris. thank you for having me, big big honor.”

French fashion label rallies support for press freedom from Trump

Paris fashion stood up for press freedom Saturday with two brands teaming up with the New York Times to show their concern for Trump’s attacks on the media.

Japanese brand Sacai and French house Etudes used slogans from the newpaper’s “The Truth is Hard” and posted them on their clothes in their men’s winter collections.

Sacai designer Chitose Abe included all 19 lines of the declaration, posted by the Times last February to defend itself and other papers from the attacks by the U.S. president, on the back of T-shirts and hoodies. She herself wore a black one with the Tims logo and the line, “Truth. It’s more important now than ever.”

Abe told the Agence France-Presse that the stance was not political, “but I do think what the New York Times said is right and that’s why I wanted to collaborate and support them.”

“It is also about the importance of tolerance and accepting everyone… and about goodness,” she added.

Etudes used the New York Times’ logo on scarves among other collaborations with the newspaper.

Both designers Jeremy Egry and Aurelien Arbet told AFP that they did not “want to send a political message but obviously we want to support freedom of expression.”

Alexander Wang is leaving New York Fashion Week

New York Fashion Week has lost longtime designer Alexander Wang. Starting this summer, he is moving his shows from the February and September schedules and place them in June and December. The move is likely to place his designs closer to pre-collection season.

According the company’s announcement, the move “is widely considered to be a transformative solution for the global industry, breaking out of the conventional fashion calendar.” The move also includes combining the pre-collection and main collections into one single collection, thus dividing the label’s products into monthly drops.

In terms of what the new change affects, the new schedule will shorten the time for purchases to four months after the show rather than the former span of six months. This also means that there will not be any ready-to-wear shows from Alexander Wang anytime soon.

The move will also shrink New York Fashion Week, which will likely affect a major portion of local industries such as hotels, restaurants, transportation and florists.

Wang will be the fifth New York designer of his generation to part ways with the official NYFW schedule.