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Lady Gaga’s Fashion Director Plans to Sell Virtual Clothes For Real Money

Daily Fashion Juice
Friday, September 30, 2011

Lady Gaga’s Fashion Director Plans to Sell Virtual Clothes For Real Money

By Ryan Kuo

Nicola Formichetti has turned heads as Mugler creative director and Lady Gaga’s fashion director. Now the forward-looking Formichetti has created a futuristic virtual outfit for the spacefaring online videogame EVE Online.

Along with a one-off version of the Formichetti design that will be auctioned for charity, EVE Online developer CCP plans to release high-fashion lines of virtual avatar clothing that may be purchased in the game with real-world money. The clothes may not have threads, but will likely play the same role as physical fashion: as representations of social status and personal taste.

Speakeasy spoke with Formichetti (who recently worked as the creative director for a short film that Lady Gaga directed and screened at the Mugler fashion show in Paris) and CCP Fashion Editor Mary Lee about their work on the project and the future of fashion.

[Mary and I] were talking about fashion designers like you embracing technology. What do you like about the virtual world and the ephemerality of it?

Nicola Formichetti: I’m not very good at that kind of stuff. That’s why I work with people like [Mary] to guide me. For me it looks sexy. I think fashion should be sexy, and their technology looks sexy. I’m into Tamagotchi stuff, of course, a little kawaii—but that’s different. Fashion and high fashion needs to look expensive and sexy. That’s why the graphics, the art, makes the clothing look very expensive.

I feel like I’m just being a punk. I’m not trying to go against the system or anything like that. It’s so obvious that we have to [embrace technology]. When I did my first Mugler show last season people were like, “Oh my god, it was like a digital experience, it’s live.” Sure, but it’s really really common sense. It has to be live, of course, and the people on the screen have to have a better seat, or as good a seat, as the front row. I made sure there were all these cameras everywhere, and it was not only one direction; you could see backstage and front row at the same time. I kept tweeting a live feed—it’s really basic stuff. For me, technology is all about communicating and being very direct. Of course you need to have the support of companies, but it needs to be more organic.

A few years ago, when photographers started doing film, suddenly everyone started doing film. It doesn’t make any sense—suddenly doing a film, but sometimes you just want to show your statement in an image. It was very trendy to do a 10-minute backstage film. Now, what I’ve discovered is that instead of doing film, you should do a moving photo, which is like a computer game; like it’s a still, but it’s alive. That feels like a natural progression from a photo becoming more digital rather than suddenly becoming moving. Or like a MySpace or Facebook GIF. For me, that feels newer.

Animated GIFs are very trendy on the internet…

Formichetti: I find everything on Tumblr or Twitter. I found this kid on Tumblr [pointing to Mary’s T-shirt], emailed him, said, “I love your work; let’s do a T-shirt together,” two days before the store opened. He was a 16-year-old kid in Russia. It’s sharing—it’s not so high-tech. GIFs are the most basic, just four pictures put together. But it feels sexy. I’m the biggest fan of black-and-white images—Irving Penn, Mapplethorpe, name it. But we’ve seen it.

Mary Lee: A GIF is quick, it’s to the point. A video or a whole film could be five or 10 minutes long.

Formichetti: A photo, I don’t even look at anymore. I think the time, the world, is becoming faster and faster. We need to run faster too.

The images have to catch up too.

Formichetti: Totally. Of course a photo will look better on an iPhone or an iPad than a magazine, even the same exact image, because it’s backlit. If you want to do something really cool in print, then you have to go the opposite way, where you make it really, really personal, like it’s so special that you’re the only one that has it. It’s all hand-drawn, uses old paper. That’s fine, but then if you start doing fashion imagery on print…

How do screens and backlit art feel in contrast to print?

Formichetti: Basically, your eyes are completely drawn to that. You like it, or not. There’s this moving, digital thing on a window [in New York]. Not so cool, but a hundred meters away, you’re completely drawn to that. It’s like drugs. You want to see more. I’m not saying that’s good, but definitely we’re more attracted to that.

Is that part of what you mean by a sexier look?

Formichetti: No, that’s not sexy. To me, sexy is sophisticated. Like, Times Square is not sophisticated, but we’re drawn to that. I think to use the technology and the base, and to make it look sexy, you need to have a twist to it. If not, it’s just a car commercial or something. We’re in fashion, so it needs to look sophisticated and desirable and cool, and all that.

How was your experience working on the Zombie Boy avatar?

Formichetti: For me, to be working with digital is mind-blowing. I’ve never done that before. As a designer, you’re always hands-on, you touch and feel and things like that. But in a similar way [in digital] you come up with research, and drawings, and patterns. It was all through digital and online. That was very fresh for me. I don’t know the exact technology; I just did the drawings and they came back to me. It almost made it feel more real, it’s really strange. When you do a drawing in real life, the physical world, you do a drawing and source fabric. You kind of have to match the fabric; it’s never exactly the same. That’s when the magic happens too, when it’s not exactly the same and you decide to use the opposite one. You start winging it, basically. But with this experience, it was so spot-on, because my drawings are closer to their things than the actual, physical things. In a way it was much, much closer to my imagination than what I would have done for the physical world.

Because it all exists on the image level?

Formichetti: Image level, yeah. I’m not saying what we’ve done is realistic, in 3D. It still has to live in a gaming world, and all these things make it sexier. If you want to do it exactly the same, like how you are now [framing me], you need to use a different kind of technology, which is boring.

Lee: In the real world, if you have a design, you put a dress on somebody, and you mess up, you have to start again. You can’t add too much. But when you’re working in the digital design, it’s easy to add extra fabric, or switch anything right away. In real fashion you’re limited by the fabric that you have.

Formichetti: Availability, yeah. We waste so much in fashion, it’s crazy, just to make one shirt. I don’t mind the research and time, but you have a sample fabric—if you start with a different fabric to mimic the fabric, and then you get a sample fabric, and then you get another—constantly to get it right, it’s waste.

You mentioned the hands-on aspect of being a stylist. There’s an intuitive aspect to being able to touch and fix something. Do you miss that in the digital?

Formichetti: I was never a hands-on person anyway. I’m not a couturier, like old-school people. Designers in the past 10 years—we don’t touch fabrics anymore, the people who have ideas. You do, but there are other people who do. You design it on a computer, or do a very specific sketch. People say this, too: It’s very flat, 2D. But I think that it feels more modern because I don’t really see anyone wearing a ball gown on the street, or something three-dimensional, so it works. Most of the designers now, they don’t want to admit it, but most of them are very two-dimensional designers.

What’s your sense of the role that fashion can play in a gaming context?

Formichetti: Fashion people cannot really play games. [Laughs] I mean, it’s too difficult. But they can appreciate it; it’s like watching a movie. Somehow, if you could make it easier… Or maybe it’s not about playing a game. It’s more about having something in your phone. Tamagotchi meets—

Lee: Maybe it doesn’t have to be so technical. Dressing your avatar, with really cool fashion.

Formichetti: Your wardrobe. Click-click-click, and you change your wardrobe.

Designer Style & Fashion for Plus Size Women from eloquii by The Limited

Daily Fashion Juice
Thursday, September 29, 2011

Designer Style & Fashion for Plus Size Women from eloquii by The Limited

Finally, there's a plus size clothing line which celebrates a woman's sense of style, respects her curves and offers uncompromising fit, quality and comfort. Launching this October, eloquii by The Limited will feature fashionable clothes and accessories for plus size women.

The inspiration for the plus-size women's clothing collection started with customers and bloggers voicing their frustration to The Limited CEO, Linda Heasley, wanting to know when The Limited was going to turn its focus toward trendy plus-sized women who actively want to participate in fashion. "Women with curves are going to 'Rejoice in the Double-Takes' they will be getting from family, friends, and acquaintances as they learn a whole new fashion vocabulary with eloquii by The Limited." says Linda Heasley.

eloquii by The Limited celebrates a woman's true fashion sense and showcases her individuality by giving her well made clothing that fits and looks great. eloquii by The Limited has taken the uncompromising fashion standards of The Limited and tailored them to deliver a spectrum of silhouettes inspired by designs right off the runway.

eloquii by The Limited carries women's clothing which ranges from professional chic to fashionable flair, featuring looks that fit your body and your sense of style. From clothes that make you look sharp at the office, to dresses that take you to any occasion, this is fashion designed for you and inspired by you..

Each piece in the eloquii by The Limited collection has been designed from start to finish, complementing a woman's body type, with careful attention paid to fit in the design process.
Jodi Arnold has joined eloquii by The Limited as the Vice President of Design and is debuting for the Spring 2012 collection. Jodi had previously successful collaborations with The Limited for the Spring 2011 and Fall 2011 seasons. eloquii is excited to take Jodi's Limited brand aesthetic and silhouettes and translate them with the launch of eloquii.

Premiere fashion blogger GabiFresh is collaborating with eloquii by The Limited for launch. Gabi is the top plus-size fashion blogger in New York. She will serve as the voice of eloquii, bringing her knowledge of her plus-size audience and the market alike to eloquii, as a brand.

As an added feature, the "Shape My Style" tab on eloquii by The Limited website will provide personal styling suggestions based off your body type, guiding you to the best fashion options to enhance your curves.

This collection pays attention to the fit details that matter, delivering modified inseams and waist levels, adjusted sleeve lengths, and two pant fits, all to flatter her curves. Trend driven stand-out pieces include; custom fit skinny jeans, the classic wrap dress, oversized sweaters, he bomber jacket, and belted stylish cape.

Specializing in plus size clothing for women, the site features a range of fashionable designer apparel, the online store features women's dresses, suits, tops, pants, shirts, sweaters, outerwear and other accessories.

Portland Fashion Week: the business of fashion

Daily Fashion Juice
Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Portland Fashion Week: the business of fashion 

by Gretchen Holzgang

When it comes to Portland Fashion Week, there is more than just the clothes you see on the runway.
Designers participating in Portland Fashion Week receive a bevy of business benefits, on top of showcasing their designs on the runway. This year those benefits include rack-space in the Portland Fashion Week Market, showroom service and consultancy from industry leaders.

In an effort to create closer ties between designers, retailers and shoppers, Portland Fashion Week, running Oct. 5 through Oct. 9, is launching its "Portland Fashion Week: Come Shop Buy" campaign. In addition to individual retailers around town, the Pearl District Business Association will collaborate with the campaign with a series of cross-marketing initiatives.

This year, the last day of fashion week is dedicated the Portland Fashion Week Market, at the Benson Hotel  in downtown Portland. The marketplace will have both retail and wholesale showrooms, helping to move designs off the runway and onto street.
Helping boost local designer's business isn't the only thing that happens behind the stage at fashion week. In 2007, Portland Fashion Week became the first sustainable production of a fashion week in the world.

Portland Fashion Week 2011, with help from the Bonneville Environmental Foundation  , will use certified carbon offsets and renewable energy certificates in order to put on the four days of runway shows, all while keeping the event's carbon footprint to a minimal.

Portland Fashion Week 2011 runs Oct. 5 through Oct. 9. Shows are held at the Vigor Industrial Shipyard, Swan Island, 5555 N. Channel Ave., Portland.

Portland Fashion Week Market is on Sunday, Oct. 9, at the Benson Hotel, 309 S.W. Boradway, Portland. The wholesale market runs from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. The public market runs from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m.

Paris fashion week opens in black and white

Daily Fashion Juice
Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Paris fashion week opens in black and white

By Emma Charlton
PARIS — Paris Fashion Week got off to a black-and-white start on Tuesday as a duo of Asian designers sent out Spring-Summer looks for 2012 that played on monochrome in both setting and style.

The global fashion pack descended on a Paris basking in gorgeous Indian Summer sunshine for the finale of the four-week ready-to-wear marathon, after a stop in Milan where the tone was firmly upbeat despite the economic gloom.

South Korean Moon Young Hee chose a light-flooded 19th-century warehouse, glass-roofed and panelled in white, to showcase a line she said fused high-tech pleats with traditional Asian tailoring, boyish cuts with ethereal draping.

Straight-cut white shift dresses and pants were criss-crossed with Mondrian-like lined patterns in maroon, blue, green and yellow, worn with or without a mannish jacket.

Hair was pinned in wispy chignons, make-up made do with touches of blue, green or red on the eyes, and shoes were flat dancer's lace-ups.

Demure, skin-covering day numbers gave way for evening to fluid organza dresses in whites and pastels, with inside-out pockets that bulged at the hips, deep cowl necks, and floaty strips that sprouted from sleeves and back like angel wings.

Silky cream shirts were glammed-up with outsize ruffles down the front, and halter neck tops were fashioned from shimmery organza wound into a rope.

For the finale the Paris-based designer sent out intricate pleated tops and dresses, in sculptured, bulbous shapes that rose high and wide around the neck.

Harry Halim chose a former metalworks as backdrop for his womenswear show, but this time it was all in black, from the walls to the models' lipstick and chunky lace-up platform shoes.

The Indonesian-born, Singapore-trained designer, sent out models to the beeps, clicks and pounding drums of an industrial electro soundtrack, dressed in macrame-like capes with stringy loops and fringes, over hotpants or mini skirts in slinky black.

Skin-tight black leather trousers widened below the knee into silky see-thru flares that trailed on the floor, while masculine jackets were slashed and cut out, with thin ribbons strapped suggestively around bare torsos.

Belgian Anthony Vaccarello, who this year received the French fashion world's prestigious ANDAM prize for young designers, also staged an ultra-sexy show on the banks of the River Seine.

Vaccarello's woman was a conquering figure, clad in mini-mini dresses inspired by the Art Deco movement, or urban pantsuits and bustiers with golden metal fastenings above the breast.

US top model Karlie Kloss closed the show, sculpted in a black asymmetrical dress that exposed one long leg and part of her belly.

"Bacon Sandwiches!": the cry rang out from a van parked outside the Aganovich show, its English vendor cheekily egging on fashionistas to succumb to temptation -- in a nod to the inspiration behind the London duo's show.

Nana Aganovich and Brooke Taylor sent out a collection loosely inspired by the palette of Francis Bacon, poppy red and black, chocolate and mint, opening their show with two actors staging a mock-interview of the late British painter.

Distorting mirrors were used to reflect the clothes made from organza, its sheer, bouffant folds pinned here and there by asymmetric buttons and clips, while tunics used trompe l'oeil effects, with sleeves or collars that looked detachable.

Wednesday's most eagerly awaited shows are the Belgian Dries Van Noten and Portugal's Felipe Oliveira Baptista, who made a strong impression in New York with his first line for Lacoste, and who is showing in Paris under his own name.

Thierry Mugler's late night, off-calendar show is also one to watch, with the house designer Nicola Formichetti, also Lady Gaga's personal stylist, slated to unveil a short film starring the eccentric diva.

Forbes China To Hold Shanghai Fashion Forum On Sept. 27

Daily Fashion Juice
Monday, September 26, 2011 

Forbes China To Hold Shanghai Fashion Forum On Sept. 27

Forbes China, the licensed Chinese-language edition of Forbes, will be hosting a forum in Shanghai with the city’s Jing’An district government on Sept. 27 titled “Creativity in Design, A Fashionable Shanghai.”

Shanghai is hoping to promote its creative industries, which as a group includes research and design, construction design, media, consultancy and planning, and fashion businesses. The city last year was approved for membership in the “Creative Cities Network” sponsored by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization.

Speakers will include John Howkins, author of “The Creative Economy,” and Kai-Yin Lo, a member of the Forbes China list of “25 Influential Chinese in Global Fashion ” in 2010.

China is expected in the next coming years to become the world’s largest market for luxury goods. Active U.S. brands in the country include Calvin Klein, Coach and Tiffany.

Pippa Middleton cuts London Fashion Week short

Daily Fashion Juice
Thursday, September 22, 2011 

Pippa Middleton cuts London Fashion Week short

Sarah McInerney

The long and the short of it ... Front row a the Temperley runway show. Pippa Middleton is seated in the middle.
The long and the short of it ... Front row a the Temperley runway show. Pippa Middleton is seated in the middle. Photo: Getty

It seems the newly-titled Duchess isn't the only Middleton sister to be copping flak from the fashion police.

Kate's little sister Pippa Middleton raised a few eyebrows at the Alice Temperley show at London Fashion Week on Monday for the thigh-baring length of her dress.

The skirt fell tastefully above the knee when standing but when sitting in her coveted front row seat, it rose so high it gave photographers "an eyeful" of leg, reported The Washington Post.
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Front row at the Sass & Bide show ... Bonnie Wright, Peaches Geldof, Poppy Delevigne and Paloma Faith are all pictured.
Front row at the Sass & Bide show ... Bonnie Wright, Peaches Geldof, Poppy Delevigne and Paloma Faith are all pictured. Photo: Getty

A "rookie mistake" was their assessment. A "fashion faux pas" was the verdict of The Daily Mail.
But short skirts and outrageous fashions have been out in force at London's showings of the spring/summer 2012 collections.

Fashion writers might err on the side of conservatism at these events, case-in-point Anna Wintour, but that doesn't constrain those seeking to further their public profile through best dressed lists and celebrity style pages.
Never mind the shock value, what about the temperature? Two of these guests appear to have BYO'd a blanket to the House of Holland show.
Never mind the shock value, what about the temperature? Two of these guests appear to have BYO'd a blanket to the House of Holland show. Photo: Reuters

Peaches Geldof left less to the imagination than Middleton at the Sass + Bide show. In fact, no one sitting across from her would have been left in any doubt about the colour of her underpants.

Pamela Anderson and Harry Potter's Bonnie Wright all took the length well above the knee. As indeed did three of the women sitting next to Middleton at the Temperley show, including actress Rosario Dawson.

It seems the 'royal' blinkers gave these ladies a reprieve from this fashion-lashing.

What do you think? Is there an unwritten fashion rule that front row guests shouldn't overshadow the designs they are there to see? Or is the length of Pippa Middleton's dress just right?

London Fashion Week: L'Oréal Professionnel team

Daily Fashion Juice
Wednesday, September 21, 2011

London Fashion Week Spring/Summer 2012: Danielle Scutt

L'Oreal Professional London Fashion Week

Luke Hersheson and the L'Oréal Professionnel team created classic French braids with a tough twist for the Spring/Summer 2012 Danielle Scutt collection at London Fashion Week.

Inspiration: A sharp but classic French braid combining the toughness of the Danielle Scutt collection with a touch of prettiness.

Get the look: Hair was doused with a liberal application of L'Oréal Professionnel Pli Thermo Fixing Spray to create a lacquer-look gloss and then woven in to a tight, wet-look braid.

Products: L'Oréal Professionnel Pli Thermo Fixing Spray

London Fashion Week: Burberry's all-star cast

Daily Fashion Juice
Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Burberry's all-star cast as Sienna, Rosie, Kanye and SamCam line the front row at Brit favourite's London Fashion Week show

By Maysa Rawi

It was London Fashion Week's hottest ticket, and the Burberry Prorsum show this afternoon didn't disappoint.

Kanye West, Rosie Huntington-Whitely, Gemma Arterton, Andy Murray, Peaches Geldof and Sienna Miller were just a few of the guests on the label's very star-studded front row.

Samantha Cameron, Sir Philip Green and Anna Wintour made up the fashion heavyweights, while celebrity stylist Rachel Zoe added a touch of Hollywood glamour.
Guests of honour: Kanye West, centre left, alongside, from left, Sienna Miller, Rosie Huntington-Whiteley, Mario Testino, Andrew Murray and Kim Sears

And there was clearly a Burberry uniform among the fash pack in attendance. Gemma, Sienna and Rosie, as well as TV star Donna Air were all sporting the same leather trousers.

Rachel Zoe and Prince Harry's ex Florence Brudenell-Bruce, meanwhile, went for thick checked woollen coats - despite the mild autumn temperature.

But it seems the label was intent on creating a unforgettable collection to match.

The accessory that stole the show was the bobble cap, seen on almost every model but all the pieces were a hit.

Thick coats and chunky knits seem perhaps out of place in a summer collection, but Burberry is a Brit label and the sun rarely shines in the UK, even in summer.

For rainy days, the trench has been given an overhaul - now in bright colours and bold prints.

The tribal theme was unexpected but provided a refreshing change.

And for those who didn't get a chance to attend the show, the collection is available to buy online now to receive next season.

Twitter users had a first look at the Spring Summer collection - before it was even unveiled at the Hyde Park show venue.

Every look was shared on the social networking site, allowing followers to view the collection moments before anyone else.

Burberry CCO Christopher Bailey said: 'Twitter is instantaneous and I love the idea that streaming a show can be in many different forms.

'This collection is all about the most detailed hand crafted pieces and fabric innovation, creating a beautiful physical experience that is communicated digitally in dynamic and diverse ways and I love balancing those two worlds.'

Finale: Gold confetti dropped on the catwalk at the Hyde Park venue

London Fashion Week: Erdem

Daily Fashion Juice
Monday, September 19, 2011

London Fashion Week: Erdem spring/summer 2012

An exquisitely pretty collection of delicate blooms at Erdem.
BY Phong Luu|19 September 2011

Erdem doesn't do trends; his focus is on his beloved floral creations, which he retools season after season, to mesmerizing effect.

The botanicals this time round were exquisitely pretty: buds of cornflower-blue, lemon and occasionally poppy-red dotted off-the-shoulder dresses, chiffon skirts and shifts. Instantly desirable, they explain why he has fans in high places, like Samantha Cameron, Michelle Obama and the Duchess of Cambridge, who wore a lacy frock of his on her sojourn to Canada. If he was gagging for a repeat with these ladies, it showed: one white, long-sleeved lace dress practically bellowed: "Buy me, Kate!", while another sleeveless shift with yellow blooms played to Michelle's toned biceps.

Having a signature look can sometimes breed predictability, the death of any designer: taking strides to "move his work forward" - fashion speak for "do something new" - he gave us floral hot pants. Well, the man had to hit a bum note sometime, didn't he?

Live video stream from London Fashion Week

Daily Fashion Juice
Friday, September 16, 2011

Live video stream from London Fashion Week

To watch more, visit

Cubavera Celebrates Hispanic Heritage Month

Daily Fashion Juice
Thursday, September 15, 2011

Cubavera Celebrates Hispanic Heritage Month with a Fashion Show and Contest of a Lifetime

MIAMI--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Cubavera, Miami’s own Latin-inspired fashion brand, will kick-off Hispanic Heritage Month along with Ocean Drive magazine and Miami International University of Art and Design with a fashion show and contest that will offer students the chance of a lifetime.

In association with Ocean Drive magazine’s Fall 2011 Fashion Event Series, Cubavera will host a RSVP-only runway show on September 22, 2011 from 8:30 to 11:30 PM at a trendy venue located in the heart of the MiMo District. The live fashion presentation will feature the latest Cubavera looks completed with accessories provided by Macy’s. The televised event will also be streamed live on and and will feature live music by AXIS, Dewar’s signature cocktails, complimentary coffee and special attendee gifts.

As part of the Hispanic Heritage celebration, a select number of Miami International University of Art and Design students will vie for the chance to showcase their submission at the show and possibly take home the grand prize of $1000 and an exclusive paid internship at Perry Ellis International’s headquarters. Each contestant will design a piece inspired by the traditional Guayabera. Entries will be exhibited at the University Gallery before a panel of industry judges. The grand prize winner will be announced during the fashion show on 9/22 by celebrity guest Maria Celeste Arraras, host of Al Rojo Vivo on Telemundo. Complete contest details and Official Rules are available at

Event sponsors include: Ocean Drive magazine, Dewar’s, Bacardi, Macy’s, The Collection, Anton Acero Beauty Studio, Moroccanoil and Smartwater. For more information, visit: Cubavera is a division of Perry Ellis International, Inc. (NASDAQ:PERY).

About Perry Ellis International

Perry Ellis International, Inc. is a leading designer, distributor and licensor of a broad line of high quality men's and women's apparel, accessories and fragrances, as well as select children's apparel. The Company's collection of dress and casual shirts, golf sportswear, sweaters, dress pants, casual pants and shorts, jeans wear, active wear, dresses and men's and women's swimwear is available through all major levels of retail distribution. The Company, through its wholly owned subsidiaries, owns a portfolio of nationally and internationally recognized brands, including: Perry Ellis(R), Jantzen(R), Laundry by Shelli Segal(R), C&C California(R), Rafaella(R), Cubavera(R), Centro(R), Solero(R), Munsingwear(R), Savane(R), Original Penguin(R) by Munsingwear(R), Grand Slam(R), Natural Issue(R), Pro Player(R), the Havanera Co.(R), Axis(R), Tricots St. Raphael(R), Gotcha(R), Girl Star(R), MCD(R), John Henry(R), Mondo di Marco(R), Redsand(R), Manhattan(R), Axist(R), Farah(R), Anchor Blue(R) and Miller's Outpost(R). The Company enhances its roster of brands by licensing trademarks from third parties, including: Pierre Cardin(R) for men's sportswear, Nike(R) and Jag(R) for swimwear, and Callaway(R), TOP-FLITE(R), PGA TOUR(R) and Champions Tour(R) for golf apparel. Additional information on the Company is available at

Athletes Hit the Front Rows at Fashion Week

Daily Fashion Juice
Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Athletes Hit the Front Rows at Fashion Week

Brad Richards, above, second from left, with fellow celebrities at the Tommy Hilfiger show.

A NEW face was turning heads at fashion shows this week, and it wasn’t Nicki Minaj (the Day-Glo-hued rapper, who sat next to Anna Wintour), Beyoncé (sporting a baby bump) or even another basketball all-star.

His name is Brad Richards, and for those inside the fashion beltway who don’t regularly watch ESPN, he is the new center for the New York Rangers hockey team, who just signed a $60-million contract.

Mr. Richards kicked off Fashion Week at the Hugo Boss and John Varvatos parties, then sat front row at the Tommy Hilfiger show on Friday, where he watched alongside Ed Westwick, James Marsden and Kellan Lutz.

“It’s my first Fashion Week,” said Mr. Richards, who is 31 and has CW-ready tousled hair and hunk stubble. “But I do like to look good.”

There may be more at play than just fashion tips. In recent years, it has become customary to see millionaire athletes sitting front row, coolly surveying the new looks in New York, as well as in Paris and Milan.

That’s especially true of basketball players. Amar’e Stoudemire, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh have become such regulars that they’re on a first-name basis with some of fashion’s royalty.

This week, they were joined by Carmelo Anthony of the Knicks, who snagged front-row seats at several shows, and LeBron James, who made a splash at the Michael Bastian show Monday.

“It’s no surprise,” said Joe Zee, the creative director of Elle. “In the last few years, fashion shows have become as much a spectator sport as about the fashion, with blinding paparazzi snapping celebs in every front row.”

As a marketing opportunity, Fashion Week is a win-win for athletes and designers, added Lucia McKelvey, a sports marketing executive in Washington.

Fashion houses, she said, get attention outside the fashion bubble, while athletes “build a mainstream pop-culture brand image, which can lead to more endorsement deals.”

Now hockey players seem to want in on the action, too. But that wasn’t always the case.

Sean Avery paved the way for this, said Michael Bastian, the designer for Gant, referring to the feisty Ranger who wears black nail polish and interned at Vogue.

“He proved that a famous athlete could be interested in clothes without it calling his masculinity in question,” Mr. Bastian said.

Ever since, the testosterone level on the front row has skyrocketed. “These guys are just like any other celebrity these days,” he added. “They blog and tweet, use stylists, get shot all the time. Going to fashion shows is really just the next step.”

Mr. Richards wasn’t the only Ranger to show up at the Lincoln Center tents. Brian Boyle, Steve Eminger, Brandon Prust, and Wojtek Wolski all made appearances. But Mr. Richards drew the most attention.

Still, he considered himself something of a fashion rookie, at least compared with his teammates. Mr. Avery, he said, is still the boldest dresser on his new team (“He’s a little more out there than I am, a little more brave”), and Henrik Lundqvist, the goalie, probably the snazziest (“He puts the work into it”).

Everyone in the clubhouse does his best to look sharp, he insisted. “I don’t think anyone sets the tone,” he added.

Spoken like a good teammate.
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Ethical Fashion: Christopher Raeburn for Victorinox

Daily Fashion Juice
Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Ethical Fashion: Christopher Raeburn for Victorinox

Christine de Leon

Horrible, foul London rain. Today would be the perfect day to wear a waterproof number from Christopher Raeburn's capsule collection for Victorinox entitled REMADE IN SWITZERLAND. I personally like the orange "kagoul" (that's rain jacket to our North American friends and family).

So, exactly how did this young designer only five years out of art school, get commissioned by Swiss Army Knife originators Victorinox to make a one-off collection? Well, Victorinox were so enamoured by Raeburn's approach to creating his own fashion-led, urban designs out of decommissioned military garments and textiles that they invited him to Switzerland to do his thing. Raeburn used local military surplus stores for ideas.

By taking apart the existing garments he found at the surplus stores, he re-imagining unexpected uses for the old garmets and challenged the concept of what is considered 'new'. A rare find was a box of horseshoe nails that became the symbol of the project for Ræburn. He challenged Victorinox to recast that nail into scales for an Original Swiss Army Knife to complement the project. The nail also inspired a print used for linings and other graphic treatments.

Ræburn and the Victorinox team set up an atelier for the production of the capsule collection at house where the founder of Victorinox, Karl Elsener lived. They sourced used sewing machines to furnish the atelier and invited local tailors and apprentices to help realise the final REMADE IN SWITZERLAND products.

I can totally see these on the likes of Wretch 32 (who? you ask -do yourself a favour and google the man) and most certainly Bjork (who? you ask - do yourself a favour and raid your mother's CD collection). Why? Because the pieces are slick, expertly tailored and really cool. They are a refreshing departure from generic military jacket look we saw so much of in 2010. Plus there are pieces that women look hot in too. I'm all about the equality of the sexes when it comes to these things.

These are limited edition pieces only one hundred of each style (a total of eight) has been made and according to Raeburn, they are built to last "The resulting garments constructed from re-appropriated Swiss military fabrics are a celebration of craft and a reaction to fast fashion" says Raeburn.

Menswear is sorely underrepresented on the ethical/sustainable fashion circuit so this unique selling point does separate Raeburn from many of his contemporaries. As military expenditure scales back in the coming week/months/years, there will be more surplus stock and finding a use for them to keep them out of the landfills would by a very good thing indeed.

However, what would be truly amazing is the introduction to repurposed material to the mass market. By this I mean upcycled coats and jackets made by local garment workers on sale at Primark or Forever 21 for that matter.

For just a moment, a brief fleeting moment, I can imagine a world where my clothes aren't made by seven-year-old Vietnamese children and that perfectly good textile isn't taking up crucial space in a landfill.

How To: Take Better Fashion Photos

Daily Fashion Juice
Monday, September 12, 2011

How To: Take Better Fashion Photos

A photographer explains how she found her inner Avedon

By Laurence Chen

Key shot with a Canon 24–70mm f/2.8L lens on an EOS-1Ds Mark III, and exposed for 1/160sec at f/10, ISO 400.
Photo: Heather Key

It’s easy to see a fashion photo as being all about sartorial style, but equally important is how a picture’s mood can sell that style. Lighting and gesture work together to pull it off. Dallas-based fashion photographer Heather Key explains that mood is the beginning of everything, and that there’s no secret, really: It all starts with the people you’re working with.

“I wanted the model to recreate a character,” Key says about a shoot she did for her own portfolio last year. “I was inspired by Richard Avedon’s shots of supermodel Stephanie Seymour. She was this strong, bad-ass woman, and I wanted to make [pictures] that were as dark and beautiful as she, and also kind of strange.”

Key enlisted a trusted hairmaster and-makeup artist and a stylist to share in the interpretation. By concerning herself only with setting the background, lighting, and general mood, Key left room for others to bring their own sense of Seymour and Avedon to the project. The stylist found a sophisticated dress and blouse combination based on a dark pattern with a splash of red. The hair-andmakeup artist spent two hours creating the look, adding numerous hair extensions. (In fact, the hair was so heavy that Key had to use four hair fans on the set, two in front and two in back, to get the flowing look she wanted.)

To keep everyone attuned to her vision, Key made large reproductions of Avedon’s work and hung them around her studio.

For light, Key used two Profoto D4 powerpacks and heads. One head fi red through a Chimera Strip Lightbank about 2 feet from the model’s right, and the other was mounted above her on a boom with a standard refl ector and a 30-degree grid spot. The set was only about 6 feet wide by 4 feet deep. To get the mannequin look in the skin, Key bumped contrast up 10 to 15 percent and brought down saturation 20 percent.

The whole project lasted six hours, and it’s clear Key’s team was dedicated to the result. Keeping the energy up throughout was critical, so Key tapped into music site for a continuous groove. “I always try to keep the mood very relaxed, and I try not to say too much,” Key says. “My models should feel free to explore whomever they can become.”

Nicki Minaj Causes Fandemonium During Fashion's Night Out

Daily Fashion Juice
Friday, September 9, 2011

Nicki Minaj Causes Fandemonium During Fashion's Night Out

Nicki Minaj strikes a pose outside the YSL boutique during Fashion’s Night Out on Thursday (September 8) in NYC.

The 28-year-old rapper also stopped by the Giuseppe Zanotti and Versace boutiques.

“Barbz, the President of YSL said we made history tonite for the most pandemonium ever. *kisses the barbz*,” Nicki tweeted.

“Believe it or not, we’ve driven over 20 blocks and a couple ken barbz r still trailing us. Lmaooo,” she wrote in another tweet, later adding, “Ok barbz, we had a blast tonite. Love u always & 4ever! Muah!”

Victoria Beckham, Alexander Skarsgard kick off N.Y. Fashion Week

Daily Fashion Juice
Thursday, September 8, 2011

Victoria Beckham, Alexander Skarsgard kick off N.Y. Fashion Week


New York Fashion Week is here, with folks like Victoria Beckham and "True Blood" hunk Alexander Skarsgard hitting the Big Apple for the sartorial celebration.

On Wednesday evening, coverboy Skarsgard kicked things off as he played host to Blackbook magazine's 15th anniversary party.

Cast mate Kristin Bauer van Straten showed up on the rooftop of NYC's Dream Hotel, as did Estelle, Bryan Greenberg, Skarsgard's "Generation Kill" costar James Ransone and band One Republic, sipping Deleon.

Beckham rolled with a much different crew out of Los Angeles: mainly her newborn, Harper. And talk about baby's first front row — soccer star David Beckham's wife even tweeted about bringing the little one to the shows.

"Mummy and baby Harper are very excited for fashion week!!!" she said.

Now, a Kardashian of Your Own

Daily Fashion Juice
Wednesday, September 7, 2011

And Now, a Kardashian of Your Own

WHEN you think of Sears (if you think of it at all), what comes to mind?

Maybe a riding mower or dishwasher? Well, now you can add to that a collection of dress-up clothes and accessories by the Kardashian sisters. It’s not so surprising. The hard-working, badly behaving stars of the E! reality show “Keeping Up With the Kardashians” are as omnipresent (and distracting) as leaf blowers in suburbia. And who better to shoot the ad campaign for what is called the Kardashian Kollection than Annie Leibovitz, the high-minded and famously financially strapped photographer?

“It was a dream to be photographed by her,” said Kourtney Kardashian, who arrived in black Sears sequin slacks with younger sisters Kim and Khloe for a preview party at Ms. Leibovitz’s studio in the meatpacking district on Tuesday night. The photographer was not around.

“Working with Annie was amazing,” said Khloe, in orange lipstick and a yellow and black skirt from the collection, which Sears considers its version of couture, although perhaps with a K. “And we hope our clothes make women feel good in their own skin.”

Kim, who once felt good enough in her own skin to make a sex video, yawned twice in a ferociously low-cut leopard-print dress while her sisters kept talking. “She yawns at everything,” Kourtney said. “She’s just a yawner.”

But not a slacker. It was, after all, just a few weeks after her 500-guest wedding in Montecito, Calif., to Kris Humphries (with Pauly D from “Jersey Shore” as D.J.) that netted millions of sponsor dollars and a People cover. Who wouldn’t be tired after that, along with a David Letterman taping right before this little press preview party? Mr. Letterman had asked her about her derrière, which she famously had X-rayed to prove it was all hers. Then he likened her big wedding ring to a doorknob and asked if it was for sale at Sears.

“Not yet,” Kim said, adding that she would be sure to dress in her own collection next time she shopped for a washer and dryer.

“He didn’t eat us alive,” Khloe said of Mr. Letterman. “Nobody can do that.”

But that doesn’t mean that everyone shares the fashion sensibility of the Kardashians. Among the junior fashion editors in attendance (joining Sears executives, family and friends), one dismissed an animal-print jumpsuit in a disco-like display.

Robert Verdi, the stylist whose canceled show lampooned the ambitions of people who pursue world domination by playing themselves on television, moaned that our national currency will soon be in Kims, Khloes and Kourtneys, rather than dollars and cents. He was displeased that they had left their party early. “They do whatever they want,” he said.

Tom Ford, Victoria Beckham, and Sarah Burton Nominated for 2011’s British Fashion Awards

Daily Fashion Juice
Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Tom Ford, Victoria Beckham, and Sarah Burton Nominated for 2011’s British Fashion Awards

When Victoria Beckham received a "Designer Brand of the Year" nomination for last year's British Fashion Awards, industry veterans got huffy that such a relative newcomer — and a celebrity designer at that — be put in the same category as titans like Burberry, Mulberry, and Pringle of Scotland. Mulberry won in the end, but Victoria Beckham is back in the nominee pool this year for the same category, this time competing against Stella McCartney, Tom Ford, and Burberry again.

Meanwhile, royal wedding hero Sarah Burton is an obvious front-runner for "Designer of the Year," and 19-year-old Hudson Jeans butt face Georgia Jagger will duke it out with seasoned pros Stella Tennant and Kristen McMenamy for the title of best model.

Christopher Kane
Sarah Burton for Alexander McQueen
Last year's winner: Pheobe Philo for Céline

Stella McCartney
Tom Ford
Victoria Beckham
Last year's winner: Mulberry

Georgia Jagger
Kristen McMenamy
Stella Tennant
Last year's winner: Lara Stone

Guido Palau
Katie Grand
Sam Gainsbury
Last year's winner: Nicola Formichetti

Kim Jones for Louis Vuitton
Margaret Howell
Oliver Spencer
Last year's winner: E.Tautz

Charlotte Olympia
Emma Hill for Mulberry
Katie Hillier
Last year's winner: Nicholas Kirkwood

J.W. Anderson
Mary Katrantzou
Peter Pilotto
LAST YEAR'S WINNER: Meadham Kirchhoff

Jordan Askill
Nasir Mazhar
Tabitha Simmons

Christopher Raeburn
James Long
J.W. Anderson

Hot new maternity line

Daily Fashion Juice
Monday, September 5, 2011

Hot new maternity line for the fashion-forward

Ladera Ranch, Calif., mom Julia Christensen gained 83 pounds when she was pregnant with her son Bradford.

Nothing in the stores looked attractive or fit with style for this self-described fashionista. “Clothes either cost $400 for a one-time wearing or weren’t made nicely,” she says.

Sound familiar? It sure seemed to Christensen that maternity clothes were designed and made by people who had never been pregnant.

So she decided to do something about it. And fortunately for her and other style-conscious pregnant women, Christensen actually had the training, patience and entrepreneurial spirit to follow through.

Her great, great grandmother had been a seamstress. Her mom was “quite a fashionista who took me clothes shopping with her,”

Christensen recalls. “One of my earliest memories -- I was 4 -- was in the evening wear department of a store, and I was taking the sequins off the dress.”

Christensen learned to sew and later to make patterns as a costume design major in college before switching her major to art history.

Add to those experiences, Christensen’s early exposure to entrepreneurship. Her father owned his own business “and he said of all his kids I’d be the business owner.”

Christensen wrote a business plan for a line of fashionable maternity clothing called Jules Ford Maternity.

“I wanted to make sure I had every detail set,” she said of her research. “I wanted a one-year plan, a five-year plan. There’s a book out about how designers put themselves out of business because they lack a business background.”

As she studied financials, she held Ford in one arm and a business book in the other, she says.

“My dad was my mentor,” she says. “I had no sleep. The baby was teething. I wanted to quit. And my dad said, ‘Julsie, maybe you’re being tested to see how much you want it.’”

So far, she has created 15 designs and Aug. 19 introduced another four designs that will be available for fall. Prices range from $65 to $150.

“I took my own experience. It’s not only the belly (that must be considered in a design) but the chest and the back. And then after you have the baby it takes a while to lose the weight,” she explains.

She found six seamstresses and an assistant through word of mouth who are all mothers and know what it’s like to be pregnant.

Christensen planned to start small and grow slowly. She would sell her clothing only through her own website until she could start a boutique in order to control merchandising and branding.

“I didn’t hire a fashion PR firm. I didn’t take out crazy-expensive ads in maternity magazines,” she says “I attribute my sales to my Facebook page. I’d post photos and friends would tell friends.”

She was conservative in her financial estimates. Sales are running 327 percent ahead of her projections.

“In September I’ll start a nursing mothers line,” she says, “and the five-year plan is a retail store that also sells baby items, handmade blankets. The company is a celebration of being a mom.”

Taping Eyelids To Look More Asian

Daily Fashion Juice
Friday, September 2, 2011

WTF-Inducing New Fashion: Taping Eyelids To Look More Asian

Fashion Week is almost upon us, and with it comes the annual parade of ridiculous things, like full-body ruffle dresses and, Kanye on the catwalk. But this year, things could get ridiculous in a racially charged way: apparently, taping back model's eyelids to make them look Asian is all the rage. Did we learn nothing from Miley Cyrus?

Check out this video of model Crystal Renn getting taped up and prancing around in Dolce & Gabbana for a Vogue Nippon fashion shoot. Meanwhile, Asian women are getting eyelid surgery to look white...

Ukraine’s male luxury fashion

Daily Fashion Juice
Thursday, September 1, 2011

Ukraine’s male luxury fashion grows stronger

He is tall, fit and young. He works as a senior manager, in a top government post or runs his father’s business.

Apart from having strong business instincts, he can also spot the difference between a Zegna-canvassed suit and its Corneliani competitor at 10 paces. Meet a member of Ukraine’s emerging male fashion class.

The financial events of 2008 hit Ukraine’s luxury industry hard, which shrank on average by 30 to 40 percent, according to industry analysts.

The impact was clearly felt among the small clique of the estimated 0.3 to 0.5 percent of Ukrainians who are “hard consumers of luxury goods and services.”

Nonetheless, the market is getting its confidence back. Young and wealthy Ukrainian males are contributing to the luxury industry’s renewed vim and vigor.

With a swath of luxury hotels such as Hilton and Swissotel ready for opening, and with fashion magazine-reading Ukrainians returning from Milan and Paris with exacting demands, Ukraine’s male luxury fashion businesses are hoping the country’s men will capitalize.

    The good Ukrainian is a bad Italian.

    - Manager of Passage 15 Man luxury store Vadym Medvedev

After years of financial uncertainty, the mood of the male fashion shopper “is more relaxed and they are ready to rumble,” says Vadym Medvedev, the manager of Helen Marlen Group’s Passage 15 Man, who expects his store’s annual revenue to increase by 10 to 15 percent in coming years.

“The good Ukrainian is a bad Italian,” ironizes Medvedev, who believes that Ukraine’s new fleet of fashion-conscious men will soon “show Europe we are not a laughing stock anymore.”

It’s true that the Soviet-era borsetki – Ukraine’s small, black leather “purses” – are still a regular feature on Khreshchatyk Street. It’s also true that many Ukrainian men continue to don a tie with a short-sleeve shirt.

But such fashion sins are increasingly under attack from younger Ukrainian men who prefer European and North American styles.

“As I see it,” says Ihor Kretov, the starch-suited communications director of Kyiv-based luxury store Sanahunt and self-appointed ambassador for men’s luxury in Ukraine, “this new generation of young businessmen spends more and more attention on how to dress well.”

According to Kretov, the typical “he” starts to think of his appearance, “not just his dress. He is getting manicures and thinking of his skin. He wants the ‘total look.’’’

Sanahunt’s strict confidentiality policy means that it’s difficult to know just what kind of man is part of this trend.

Yet Luxor Management, a Ukrainian consulting and communication firm researching the luxury market, finds that “the majority of luxury consumers [in Ukraine] is made up of politicians, state authorities and their environment,” according to managing partner Oleksandr Chetchikov.

Happily, Ukraine’s wealthy men are unlikely to pay much more at the cash register than their overseas counterparts.

At Helen Marlen’s Passage 15, fashionable high-end Tom Ford suits start from Hr 30,000, shirts from Hr 4,000 and ties from Hr 1,800.

Harrod’s in London, for its part, sells Tom Ford two-piece suits from Hr 26,000, while its shirt and tie prices exactly match those of Passage 15.

In Chetchikov’s opinion, Ukraine represents a particular male luxury demographic. “The average age of a luxury consumer in Ukraine is between 35 and 50 years old,” he says, “whereas in Europe the same refers to males aged between 45 to 60 years old.”

The relative youth of the market is music to the ears of Sanahunt’s Kretov. “Men are the most loyal customers of all,” enthuses Kretov, who does his best to keep his male clientele pleased with a live DJ in the foyer and refreshing glasses of wheatgrass upon arrival.

The youthful demographic rings true for Medvedev’s Passage 15 Man. Its clients are usually between 30 and 45 and are businessmen from Kyiv and other major cities.

Footballer Andriy Shevchenko is one of the trendiest men in Ukraine.

The store has around 500 regular clients on its books, defined as those who shop at the store at least three to four times per year. The average shopper spends around $500 per visit, he says.

    Men are the most loyal customers of all.

    - Ihor Kretov, communications director of Kyiv-based luxury store Sanahunt and self-appointed ambassador for men’s luxury in Ukraine

When it comes to identifying Ukraine’s leaders of the fashion pack, footballer Andriy Shevchenko’s close friendship and modelling engagements with fashion designerGiorgio Armani spring to mind.

However, industry commentators put other names forward: Ukrainian restaurateur Serhiy Gusovsky, Vice Prime Minister Serhiy Tigipko, and soccer player Oleksandr Shovkovsky.

Ukraine’s emerging male luxury market matches global trends. The 2011 World Wealth Report, an annual study of trends concerning the world’s best-heeled compiled by Paris-based consulting firm Capgemini and investment giant Merrill Lynch Global Wealth Management, records the changing demographics of wealth.

In its annual barometer that measures what it calls High Net Wealth Individuals (HNWI), defined as those who earn more than $1 million per year, men represent 73 percent of HNWI and a younger generation is emerging.

In 2010, HNWI under 45 made up 17 percent, up from 13 percent in 2008.

Luxor Management’s Chetchikov also sees a positive trend reemerging but warns that full recovery won’t happen until 2014-2015.

But what is certain is that a happy few male fashionistas are changing their beige cotton socks and sandals for silk windowpane leggings and Santoni leather shoes.

Or, if Sanahunt’s Kretov is to be believed, next year they won’t be wearing socks at all.