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Saturday, June 6, 2009

Big Time Sensuality

The sale racks might be bursting at the seams with misbegotten celebrity clothing lines (gee, thanks, Heidiwood), but we can always squeeze one more, especially when it's from fashion's muse-with-the-most, Beth Ditto. With her debut collection for Evans, Topshop's plus-size line, the voluptuous vixen brings some of her sexy pop-punk signatures to the ample and curvy. If you can't make it to London for the opening stampede, which should be fairly epic, Evans is setting up a special e-shop that goes live July 9, when the collection hits stores.

—Franklin Melendez

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Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Final Thoughts

Style correspondent PLAY rounds up Paris Fashion Week...

The Mood
So yes, Paris had to tighten its belt in this nasty economic climate, which meant more presentations and fewer runway shows. But naturellement, everyone pretended they weren't personally affected. And actually, the reality for the average fashion editor is akin to Franz Kafka’s diary entry from August 2, 1914: "Germany declares war on Russia. Afternoon: swimming lessons."

Tweet a Trend
Like anyone else, I want to know what's new. But I never thought I'd be turning to my cell phone to read pedestrian chit-chat on Twitter. This was a case of the early bird getting the trend. In fact, the trend this season was Twitter.

Celebrity Fatigue
I first spotted Kanye West and entourage gatecrashing their way into Viktor & Rolf. It turned out Kanye was causing havoc everywhere. He was the new Bruno. Meanwhile, at Chanel, I almost got crushed by paparazzi surrounding Lily Allen, before swarming around Kate Moss in the front row. It left me wondering how more celebs don't end up train wrecks like Amy Winehouse.

Queen Beth
But the celebrity had to be Love cover star Beth Ditto, as if following the season's unofficial motto: It ain't over till the fat lady sings. Apparently her mission was to show the outside world that the old cliché of fashion being a gated community for diet-obsessed, humor-free folks is out of touch. Ditto's finest moment was performing with her band The Gossip at the Fendi party. I wanted to tweet: "OMGOMG!!! ditto does britney! nipplegate any sec!!"

She's Got the Look
Sometimes the best way to see where fashion is going is to follow a fashion editor. Based on my stalking of Carine Roitfeld, Emmanuelle Alt and Anna Piaggi, you should think preppy, mix decades (i.e. 40s and 80s for a Casablanca-meets-Top Gun look), don double-breasted blazers (like Stella McCartney's), throw on a biker jacket and, I’m afraid to say, slip into harem pants. Key colors? Black, greige and noir tobacco, which is taking over for camel, now considered not crisis-appropriate—put that in your pipe and smoke it.


Anna Piaggi (©PLAY)

Big Top
If designers have their say this fall, we'll be wearing plastic bags over our heads (Hussein Chalayan), bunny ears (Louis Vuitton), S&M masks (Jean Paul Gaultier) and Leigh Bowery sex-doll lips (Alexander McQueen).

Power Failure
As an early-adopter of Maison Martin Margiela's leather leggings and 80s' shoulders for fall 08, I'm all for power looks. But after witnessing editor after editor working huge shoulders and oh-so-fierce platforms, I got over it fast. It felt like Art Basel last year, when I counted 20 Louis Vuitton Richard Prince bags in under two hours.

Fur Alarm
What the heck was the idea behind the over-presence of statement fur? Was it to prove one’s immunity to chilly economic winds? Only very few got it right, like Carine Roitfeld, who strode across Tuileries park looking fit to squash the squeeze.

Carine Roitfeld (©PLAY)

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Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Prada Placement

By Rebecca Voight...

It's two down and two to go. For a series aptly called The Iconoclasts, Miuccia Prada picked four fashion editors—W’s Alex White, Katie Grand from the soon-to-be-legendary Love, Olivier Rizzo (who styles for V, VMAN, Another and Arena Homme Plus) and French Vogue’s editrix Carine Roitfeld—and asked them to “rethink” Prada stores in New York, London, Milan and Paris.

This week Alex White invaded New York’s Soho store, while London’s Old Bond Street Prada was turned into a skate park by Katie Grand. The lowdown: White went heavily for liquid Lycra leopard-spot and snakeskin stockings in a red-light district mood, while she left Prada’s spring pumps in a delectable, chaotic heap. She also worked Mickey Mouse ears into hats and put a few of Prada's mannequins in white blindfolds—a signature touch?

Meanwhile, Grand—along with David Sims—installed a plywood skateboard ramp in the Old Bond Street store. Presumably shoppers will bring their decks and forego those dangerous six-inch platforms that sent a few pretties tumbling during the last show. "I wanted to do a film with David Sims and we talked about having a girl dancing," says Grand, reached on a shoot the day after the London launch party. "We only had 2½ weeks and David was on vacation in Costa Rica, so we worked it out over a few desperate email conversations. Eventually he said he wanted to have girls skateboarding so we looked for models who knew how. But then I thought about Prada's display mannequins. They're so beautiful, so we put them on the ramp."

Now back to Love. After a sneak preview at London's Dover Street Market and Harvey Nichols, Grand's new Condé Nast fashion mag will hit newsstands on Thursday, but for the moment she doesn't even have any copies left in her office. After several Valentine's launch soirées, she says she planning a bigger bash a bit later at Harvey Nicks. Love's first issue features ladies and gents who "don't have model-like dimensions," says Grand, who put a sumptuous, nearly nude Beth Ditto on the cover. Iggy Pop—who Grand points out "is a women's sample size"—and the statuesque Anjelica Huston appear inside.


Prada New York, rethought by Alex White


Prada London, rethought by Katie Grand

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