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Monday, June 29, 2009

Headline Trip

  • Prada's Transformer cinema project launched in Seoul, South Korea, sans Megan Fox or other annoying starlets. [Prada]
  • Lower East Side boutique Project No. 8 to open a men's counterpart, No. 8b, at 38 Orchard St. on Thursday.
  • It was all a Blur, not mud, at the closing of Glastonbury. [NME]
  • Marlon Richards: "Glad I'm not at Jacksonbury." [Facebook]
  • A preview of Karl Lagerfeld's Hitchcockian Chanel campaign for fall, shot at his new Vermont estate for the second time...

  • Chanel, fall '09

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    Wednesday, May 27, 2009

    Your Initials Here

    Designer logos are passé, doncha know? But sporting your own monogram? Not so much. Our Prada pals just dropped us a line to let us know that soon you can order personalized Character Tags, consisting of sliding letters attached to a strap in either leather ($110) or croc ($145). So, not only will you be your own brand (the secret behind every self-made billionaire), but locating your suitcase at baggage claim just got a lot easier.

    —Max Berlinger

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    Thursday, May 14, 2009

    Awkward Bound

    Go west this spring with prairie prints, dusty hobo overalls and your most ill-fitting Sunday best.

    photography & styling Louis Park
    art director Ann Kim
    make-up Iwa Park using Mac Pro
    hair Kunio Kohzaki using Therapi
    models Jessica @ Select, Amber @ Select,
    Roma @ Select, Chris T @ Premier, Patrick @ Storm
    location London, England
    thanks Neo2

    left: top Paul Smith, pants Form / middle: sweater Fred Perry, pants Qasimi / right: scarf H&M, top Fred Perry, pants Edward Sexton
    left: top Fred Perry, coat Eley Kishimoto, belt Beyond Retro, bangles H&M / shirt Adidas Originals, trench Burberry Prorsum, jacket Qasimi

    left: shirt & jacket Merc, vest Vivienne Westwood, pants Diesel, tie Paul Smith / middle: dress Eley Kishimoto / right: dress SteveJ&YoniP
    left: shirt Paul Smith, jacket Prada, pants Merc, bow tie Beyond Retro / top Fred Perry, trench Prada, hat Beyond Retro, necklace Burberry Prorsum

    left: top Luella / right: dress Vivienne Westwood

    polo Fred Perry, dress Reem, blazer Y-3
    left: dress Paul Smith, cardigan Fred Perry, shoes Beyond Retro / middle: scarf & apron Beyond Retro, dress Vivienne Westwood, shoes Paul Smith / right: shirt Merc, track pants Adidas Originals, overalls Diesel, shoes Beyond Retro

    jacket Qasimi, shoes Prada, bow tie Paul Smith
    left: shirt Paul Smith, top Fred Perry, outside top Y-3, pants Merc, hat Paul Smith / right: polo & t-shirt Prada, top shirt Merc, pants Fred Perry, belts Beyond Retro

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    Sunday, April 19, 2009

    Coat of Paint

    photography Michelle Matiyow and Lians for LM studios
    paint work Vincent Sherk
    styling Rebecca Stevens
    model Paulina Wycka @ Wilhelmina
    make-up Andrea Duchesneau
    hair Kennice for Klix @ Heidi Bashar Salon

    jacket Dries Van Noten, pants Yigal Azrouel, shoes Gucci
    jacket Gucci, dress Alice + Olivia, shoes Chanel

    coat DKNY, dress Vera Wang, shoes Christian Louboutin

    jacket Prada, dress Eryn Brinie
    dress Michael Kors

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    Tuesday, March 10, 2009

    Hint Tip: Prada

    If you thought you knew house-flipping, Prada spins it even more. Next month in Seoul, South Korea, Prada will launch Transformer, a pavilion-like structure combining four shapes (a hexagon, cross, rectangle and circle) that flips—literally, with cranes—so that when one shape becomes the main space, the other three shapes become the walls and ceiling. For five months, the shape-shifting venue designed by OMA/Rem Koolhaas will showcase a series of cross-cultural exhibitions, interdisciplinary projects, screenings and live events. First up is Waist Down, Miuccia Prada's skirt collection, shown alongside skirts by emerging Korean fashion students. Then the space will be convert into a cinema, screening a program of films selected by Babel director Alejandro González Iñárritu, followed by Beyond Control, a "magma" of works by an array of prominent contemporary artists. It's all about South Korea, didn't you know?

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    Thursday, March 5, 2009

    Paris Fashion Week: Day 1

    By Rebecca Voight...

    Gareth Pugh cranked up the smoke machine before presenting his fall collection as a short film, picking up where he left off from his wicked men's collection in January, including pointy-nail studded leathers—ouch! Pugh’s always favored balloon shapes—he once had his models walk down an inflated catwalk—and this time the puffed-up looks, as well as cropped jackets and cape-like coats, came in bronze, worn by model Natasa Vojnovic.

    Gareth Pugh

    Kris Van Assche sent out billowy silk jumpsuits in various shades of charcoal, as well as transparent military shirts—all of which looked lighter than air. And for the girl who can't decide whether to wear a skirt or pants, he somehow managed to combine both in one piece. A skant? Pirt? Pulotte?

    Kris Van Assche

    Martine Sitbon had all Paris' It-girls sitting front row for her Rue du Mail show, including the lovely Zoe Cassavetes, who's currently living in Paris. Sitbon showed flesh and cream-colored hooded jackets over leggings worn with silver foil hot pants. In fact, the collection was full of hoods and black-on-black matte and shine—tough, chic and elegant.

    Prada wound up its four-city Iconoclasts series with snake-charmer Carine Roitfeld's “rethink” for Paris' Avenue Montaigne store. Roitfeld, who never goes by halves, cleared out the entire place and turned it into a reptile shelter. “I thought about the snake prints in the spring collection and based the whole thing on real versus fake,” she told me. That meant live fat snakes encased in small plexi-cages and fashionably creepy snake-print rubber flooring throughout, with green lighting that gave everybody in the room a reptilian glow. The focal point was model (and dancer) Karlie Kloss, in an up-do and snake-print unitard, who slithered around the room in a hot and bothered way.

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    Sunday, March 1, 2009

    Backstage Beauty

    ... at Prada. Photos by Sonny Vandevelde...

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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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    Tuesday, February 10, 2009

    Prada Hit Parade

    Prada seems to be setting its sights on total world domination. Not content with sending everyone on a scramble for lace last season, now the style juggernaut has enlisted four leading fashion editors—visionary image-makers in their own right—to take over and make over key Prada boutiques.

    More than glorified window dressing, The Iconoclasts will showcase individual interpretations of Prada's spring '09 collection, with its lush metallics and platforms worth the tumble. The project, to be fully documented on its website, will kick off with W's Alex White transforming the Soho boutique (2/13), followed by Love's Katie Grand in London (2/13) and Oliver Rizzo in Milan (2/25), culminating with Carine Roitfeld's triumphant conversion of the Avenue Montaigne store in Paris (3/5). These are your icons, folks.

    —Franklin Melendez

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    Thursday, December 18, 2008

    Your First Look: Prada Men's

    This is the new spring campaign for Prada menswear, photographed by Hedi Slimane. The first-time models (and still schoolboys) are the Simonon brothers, Louis and Claude. Who are they? The sons and heirs of Paul and Tricia Simonon, the bass player and manager of The Clash, respectively. How's that for rock royalty? Or is it punk prodigy? The resemblance to dad, the hottie of the group, is uncanny. But back to Hedi and Prada, if we were the speculating kind, we might say this is the beginning of a beautiful relationship in menswear...

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    Wednesday, July 9, 2008


    André do Val grills Daiane Conterato...

    Ever since walking in Prada’s fall '06 show in Milan, Daiane Conterato has worked with Steven Meisel, Steven Klein, Juergen Teller, David Sims, Inez van Lamsweerde & Vinoodh Matadin for the best rags around—think Italian Vogue, French Vogue and Numero. She's known for her angular face and stick figure, but Daiane insists she's the queen of the barbecue. We guess that makes sense, considering she's from Porto Alegre, Brazil, land of bloody meat and gauchos...

    Backstage at Neon, Alexandre Herchcovitch and Redley during São Paulo Fashion Week

    Did you manage to have some days off before fashion season?
    Thank goodness for that. It was lovely. I spent a month at home with my family. That was exactly what I needed. And I ate so much. That was before Rio and São Paulo fashion weeks in June, right before I go to New York for the castings and everything starts again.

    So you have been eating a lot, huh?
    I always do! I love barbecues. My father does it really well. I really stuff myself with meat and potato salad and all that mayo that goes with it.

    Is there something you don’t eat?
    Don’t ask me to eat tomato salad. I don't mind healthy food, it's just that I hate raw tomatoes.

    Have you found any fancy foreigners to go out with in your travels?
    I think I still prefer Brazilians. They are tender and careful. And I don’t have very much time to go out with boys anyway.

    Who do you go out with then?
    Mostly my friends are gay, so I normally go with them to gay clubs to dance. It's better because I can actually have fun and relax, and the boys don't stalk me.

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    Thursday, June 26, 2008

    Backstage at Prada Men's

    Photos by Andrew Burmeister...

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    Sunday, April 27, 2008

    The new Prada Foundation revealed...

    "After more than 15 years of activity, the Prada Foundation felt the need to widen its own exhibition spaces and broaden its cultural perspective. The enriched course of research we would like to undertake will be expressed through the expansion of projects realized in a dialogue with artists, and in future collaborations with leading international museums, institutes for contemporary art, architecture and design, as well as partners for temporary exhibitions. For this reason, we have commissioned the Office of Metropolitan Architecture (OMA) led by Rem Koolhaas to plan the transformation of an early 20th-century industrial site south of Milan. The Prada Foundation’s new and permanent exhibition spaces will be in a location that includes buildings dating from 1910s. Koolhaas’s project will add an exhibition building, auditorium and tower to the existing structure to house selections of works from the collection and temporary shows. It will be a unique approach to the idea of the co-existence of contemporary architecture with the regeneration of an historic area, representing the evolution of Milanese industrial development that continues through the present day. In ongoing efforts to widen the Prada Foundation’s range of activities, the new auditorium will make it possible to host various festivals, theater performances, symposia and lectures on literature, art, cinema, design, architecture, philosophy and global media." —Miuccia Prada and Patrizio Bertelli

    "It is surprising that the enormous expansion of the art system has taken place in a reduced number of typologies for arts’ display. It seems that the arts’ apotheosis is unfolding in an increasingly limited repertoire of spatial conditions: the gallery (white, abstract and neutral), the industrial space (attractive because its predictable conditions do not challenge the artist’s intentions), the contemporary museum (a barely disguised version of the department store) and the purgatory of the arts fair. The new Prada Foundation is projected in a former industrial complex too, but one with unusually diverse spatial environments. We plan to add three new structures that vastly extend the range of its facilities and accomodations. The new Foundation is intended as a collection of artefacts that encounters a collection of architectural typologies. Not only will the range of spatial conditions be extended, but also the range of contents itself. Apart from spaces for assembly and performance, both Prada’s and Luna Rossa’s archives will be opened, establishing a continuity of creative and intellectual effort." —Rem Koolhaas


    Thursday, March 13, 2008

    The third and last part of Haidee Findlay-Levin's tips for fall...

    It wasn't just the army of beautiful lips and bowl cuts that made our hearts leap at Yves Saint Laurent; it was the sharp, powerful, 80s-reminiscent tailoring, too. But here's what separates this season’s YSL and Louis Vuitton from Claude Montana and Gianfranco Ferré: the circular cutting and the curves in the jackets and skirts. In fact, some of the tulip and pod shapes we have seen at Vuitton and elsewhere this season are more Sebilla and Romeo Gigli—also from the 80s. I also noticed a variety of peplum jackets for fall. If the jacket was fitted, for the most part it had a sharp shoulder and a nipped or peplum waist, not only at Vuitton, but also at Yohji Yamamoto (left), where the peplum jutted out over long full skirts complete with a donut-rolled waist for an even fuller hip effect.

    The shoulder was the focus last season. Now it's the sleeve, such as those at Costume National that wrapped around the shoulder blade and formed a pod in the back, or those at Kenzo that draped into a cocoon shape or an origami-like envelope. We also saw sleeves originating from the neckline, as well as sleeves that separate at the back of the jacket, falling into a detached cape back, as at Véronique Branquinho and Junya Watanabe. At Lanvin, attention was paid to a single mutton sleeve—a remnant of the 80s!

    Some designers chose to embellish areas of essentially monochromatic fabrics with jet beading, feathers, ribbon, fine pleating, ruffles and pasmanterie. But there was nothing superfluous at Prada (left), where the most startling form of decoration was the heavy tablecloth lace constructed into minimal and austere silhouettes, and made further monastic by the under-layering of high-collared shirts.

    The strength in Dries Van Noten this season came not only from the mix of dramatic prints, but that these potentially romantic dresses were offset by a simple high collar. Givenchy showed extremely high-collared pleated blouses, made less romantic by their coupling with leather trousers and military jackets. I loved it best at Yves Saint Laurent, where paper-thin turtlenecks were shown under tunic dresses, but extended well beyond into fingerless gloves. One known to take proportion to its ultimate extreme, Martin Margiela raised the collar so high above the shoulders as to become a cowl that almost completely obscured girls' faces.

    Indulge in vast and unapologetic explosions of costume jewelry for fall. What we saw were statement pieces that were more sculptural than sweet or sentimental. Balenciaga contrasted latex and severe cuts with diamanté-encrusted collars, while the collars and cuffs at Yves Saint Laurent (left) consisted of Pace Rabanne-like chain mail with enormous crystal studs. At Louis Vuitton, the soft pastel palette was punctuated with heavy metal chokers and huge brooches. Lanvin ran with the trend and showed enormous Deco-geometric, mirror-glass pendants and wrist cuffs. This new form of armor added a needed toughness to clean silhouettes. The combination of heavy jewelry with extreme shoes could mean your chiropractor will be your new best friend.

    There weren’t a lot of overtly sporty references this season, so it's safe to say you can burn your velour Juicy Couture tracksuits—and please do, if you haven't already. But there was a prevalence of scuba references. Miu Miu shook off its naughty baby-doll reputation and showed a series of dark satin scuba suits complete with Esther Williams-like swim caps. Or sometimes the scuba suit morphed into a tunic dress with bright-colored cycling shorts and sports tops peeking through laser-cut, abstract versions of lace. The addition of sequins made for a wet look that worked perfectly with the scuba references Balenciaga introduced so magnificently last season. Even Rick Owens discarded his more familiar draping and embraced open zippers that circled the legs like a scuba suit that was being slowly peeled off. Upcoming Olympics aside, the news that Hussein Chalayan is the newly appointed creative director at Puma may signal a sportier trend for him next season, as well as all those he influences.

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    Sunday, March 9, 2008

    Part two of stylist Haidee Findlay-Levin's tips for fall...

    Okay, I know I said earlier that color is back for fall. And it is, but so is black. Stop your groaning—the black dress never looked better. It was skillfully laser-cut at Balenciaga (left), skimmed the body at Sophia Kokosalaki and draped to the floor at Junya Watanabe. It was in divine Spanish lace at Givenchy and heavy tablecloth lace at Prada. The opening dress at Alexander McQueen, made from layers and layers of soft tulle, was reminiscent of a black crow, though it was hardly the only exquisitely gothic dress in the collection. The mohair-lace dress stretched over layers of tulle, like one of Degas’ ballerinas in silhouette, was especially to-die-for. But perhaps the most exquisite black dresses walked Lanvin's runway; my two favorites were a wet-look wrap dress and a one-shouldered silk satin shift with a heavy fur cuff on its one side.

    Brace yourself for black eyes this fall. And I'm not talking gobs of Amy Winehouse eyeliner, no matter how well she sang at the Fendi store launch party during Paris Fashion Week. I'm talking kohl eyes, the classic kind found at Givenchy, as well as the perfect cat eyes at Balenciaga. (When replicating, please don’t get carried away like one recent fashion show attendee who not only completely painted his face white—yes, he's male—but dons a Shirley Temple wig.) Blackened eyes do require a nude or beige mouth, like the kind found at Rick Owens, but if you have to have a layer on your lips, go all the way with ink-black glossy lips like those at Yves Saint Laurent.

    If goth isn’t your thing, choose from the endless permutations of gray seen on the runways: slate, charcoal, heather, lilac and mauve. Junya Watanabe (left) committed fully to a collection of no-color to illustrate his deft cutting and draping, taking it so far as to completely wrap the girls' heads and faces in sheer gray fabric with mini-boxes piled high on their heads, to sculptural effect.

    With the severity of cut this season, and the attention paid to minimalism and the back, the only hair to wear is a ponytail. Not the high, Blonde Ambition version, but a simple ponytail worn on the side and secured at the nape of the neck. Miu Miu even showed the ponytail peeking out of neoprene swim caps. The only other acceptable version would be a small knot or chignon, also worn low and tight. So no more Barbie hair or updos. And please no more big Oscar hair—ever!

    This has been one of the most creative seasons for pants in ages, with designers really experimenting with fullness. The best baggy pants came from Louis Vuitton, especially when slightly drop-waisted and pleated. Those in shiny black leather with a slightly pegged leg were absolutely stunning, reminiscent of that Grace Jones/Thierry Mugler/Claude Montana era. My other favorites were over at Yves Saint Laurent, shown slightly cropped and higher in the waist. Haider Ackermann pushed his baggy pants high above the knee, like puffy shorts worn over leather leggings. There were Houri trousers in velvet devoré, as well as printed chiffon versions, at John Galliano, and narrow gray flannel pant-skirts at Junya Watanabe, which ended in an extremely low crotch. Meanwhile, at both Givenchy and Alexander McQueen, pants were skinny, black and high-wasted and mostly in leather or brocade. Maison Martin Margiela went super-sexy and offered leather pants complete with zippers snaking up the back of the leg like seamed stockings. And how can we ignore his other offering, the asymmetric one-legged bodysuit in a multitude of prints?

    I know it seems passé to talk skirt lengths in this day and age, but here it is: skirt lengths will definitely drop. I'm not talking red-carpet gowns here, but floor-grazing, skinny column dresses at Sophia Kokosalaki, which save their intricate detail for the collar. There was also the black dress that opened her show, seemingly suspended by a single diagonal strap and falling well below the knee. Dries Van Noten, too, showed high-necked column dresses that ended mid-calf, just short of ankle socks and heavy strappy sandals. At Louis Vuitton there were some knee-length bell skirts, but it was all about ballerina-length dirndls that stood away from the hips, while at Lanvin (left) the length was kept just above the knee with sexy and tight hobble skirts made up of bands of horizontal ribbon.

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    Sunday, December 23, 2007

    No more shaking fists in rage over closing time at the Prada store. Now, finally, the day of procuring Prada online—if only accessories—is here. A cursory search yields pure squeal-out-loud goodness in the form of squishy little teddy-bear key rings adorned with heaps of sequins and beads, charms and dog collars; pert patent leather wristlets with wee clusters of blooms calling to mind a prom corsage; and those trademark coin purses, wallets, pouches and skinny bags in impeccable leather or nylon. Further investigation turns up watches big and small, a tea set and—ready for this?—a deck of tarot cards (trumps only, you'll have to get your minor arcana elsewhere). Those of us in the States will have to obsess about something else momentarily as, for now, shipping is available in the EU only.

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