Friday, May 10, 2013

Gisele Is The New Face Of H&M

Gisele Budchen  is the new face of  H&M.The supermodel stars in the autumn/winter 2013-14 campaign for the Swedish retailer, which was shot on the streets of London.

While no pictures from the final campaign have yet been unveiled, the brand released a behind-the-scenes preview of the imagery earlier today - showing a smiling Bundchen wearing a black coat. H&M is on a roll with its current slew of campaign stars, such as Beyonce who are showcasing a series of swimwear - while models Daphne Groeneveld, Joan Smalls, Liu Wen and Lindsey Wixson are the faces of the retailer's New Icon´s Range.

Gisele For H&M
Bundchen - who last year was named top of Forbes' highest-paid models list - gave birth to her second child, daughter Vivian Lake Brady, in December. The 32-year-old is also the current face of Chanel beauty and previously worked with H&M on its spring/summer 2011 campaign.

Westwood Designs Virgin Atlantic Uniforms

Vivienne Westwood  has redesigned Virgin Atlantic's famed red uniforms. Over 7,500 members of staff, including cabin crew, pilots, Clubhouse staff and Virgin Holidays employees, will wear the new ensembles - which will make their debut for the first time from July 2013, before the official launch in 2014.

The pairing may come as a surprise to many, considering Westwood's outspoken views on sustainability and unnecessary waste, voiced last weekend at a Vogue Festival  talk on fashion´s ability to change the world. However, the pair first met through the designer's ex-husband Malcolm McLaren, who Branson knew from signing the Sex Pistols to his record label.

"The one person in this world who could create unique designs is Vivienne," Branson told us. "So it's great to be working with her. What we don't want to do is work with anyone who comes up with a design and just dumps it on the cabin crew. It's glamorous, it's stylish."

Vivienne Westwood For Virgin Airlines
The uniforms are made using recycled materials - including polyester yarn that originated from plastic bottles and canvas created from reused roadside banners and leather off-cuts - and also incorporate Westwood's well-tailored, figure-hugging signatures.

"I really think that Richard Branson has really good motives for everything he does, said Westwood, before explaining her motives for creating the ethically-minded uniforms. "Fashion - actually let's call it clothing, because most of it isn't fashion - is one of the biggest polluters, it must be with all that landfill. My main focus is quality, rather quantity, and I've been saying to people, 'Buy less, choose well, make it last', Rather than just keep sucking things up."

Fashion’s Finest Launch Punk Collection

Online  luxury fashion retailer Moda Operandi celebrates the Met Museum´supcoming punk exhibition, Punk: Chaos To Couture, with a collection designed by 12 leading labels, including Dolce & Gabbana, Givenchy  and Balmain. The range will launch on May 2nd.

Each label will create an exclusive, limited edition piece that pays homage to punk, from one-of-kind clothing to artworks. Other brands to participate are Prabal Gurung, Rodarte, Moschino, Tom Binns and Vivienne Westwood. Prices will range from $100 (£65) to $13,000 (£8,500).
The Punk Collection
"We are thrilled to offer women the opportunity to capture the spirit of punk with pieces that balance high fashion and rebellion," said Moda Operandi co-founder Lauren Santo Domingo.

Great Gatsby Costume Designer Exclusive

Catherine Martin, who created the costumes for the long-awaited film version of  The Great Gatsby was not always a fan of the famed F Scott Fitzgerald novel. In fact, the film's director, Baz Luhrmann had to use his persuasive skills to convince the designer to forget her initial opinions on the book and give it another try.

"I remembered Gatsby from being a teenager and not quite connecting with the story, but Baz was very persuasive," said Martin. "So I read the novel and - you know how one can rewrite history - I then became the greatest proponent of Gatsby ever. Much to Baz's irritation, because it was really his discovery and his insistence that made me read the book."

Martin worked alongside Miuccia Prada  and Brooks Brothers to create the Twenties-inspired costumes that the cast wear, including Carey Mulligan  and Leonardo DiCaprio. The designer has long been fascinated by the book's time period, due to the social revolution that took place after World War I.

"Saying that women were at the forefront of that revolution, I don't know that it's entirely accurate, but they were certainly making strides," she said. "It was a time of incredible change where we basically go from a 19th-Century world to a modern, mechanised world reliant on machines in the space of five years."

High Fashion : Great Gatsby Style
Although maintaining the authenticity of original Twenties clothing was important to both Martin and Luhrmann, the idea of reconnecting audiences with the story was also a key focus.

"Baz was describing to me about the modern music in this version of Gatsby and he said, 'We've got to get the audience to feel how it must have felt to hear jazz for the first time at a party,'" she said. "You need to feel how scintillating, extraordinary, new and dynamic these things were; there needs to be a frisson of the new for people to actually understand what it was really like to be there in the Twenties."

Selfridges To Launch Drive-Through Service

Selfridges will open the world's first drive-through shopping service from January. Shoppers will be able to order purchases online, before collecting them from a reception area behind the Oxford Street store - without even having to get out of the car.

"There will be a dedicated area providing the level of service you would expect from Selfridges," Selfridges multi-channel director Simon Forster told The Evening Standard. "It will not just be the first drive-through service, it will be the best."

The store is currently investing in its website, having recently launched a Click and Collect service - where customers can reserve products before retrieving them in store. The company hopes to make all of its products - except perishable foods - available online by the end of the year.

Isabella Blow Wardrobe Exhibition To Open

The  wardrobe of Isabella Blow will go on display at Somerset House from November 20, as part of a new exhibition. Isabella Blow: Fashion Galore! - in partnership with The Isabella Blow Foundation and Central Saint Martins - will feature 100 pieces from the style maverick's personal collection.

"The exhibition will be bittersweet," said friend and heiress Daphne Guinness, who bought Blow's wardrobe in its entirety at an auction in June 2010. "Showcasing her clothes is what she would have wanted."

Isabella Blow
The dedicated showcase is set to feature pieces by Alexander McQueen  and Phillip Treacy - including the headdress that the milliner designed for her wedding, Stylist reports.

Blow is known for having discovered some of fashion's most well-known names, including McQueen (whose entire graduate collection she bought for £5,000), Sophie Dahl and Stella Tennant. A fashion editor, consultant and muse, she was renowned for her bold, daring and extrovert style.

Topshop Unique Launches Pre-Fall And Resort Lines

Topshop Unique will launch its first pre-fall and resort collections this year. The first drop - for pre-autumn/winter 2013-14 - lands in store tomorrow.

"As Unique goes from strength to strength, it's now in its 24th season, it felt like the right time to start to offer pre-fall and resort collections, particularly as Topshop expands internationally," said Emma Widen, Topshop's fashion director. "The pre-fall collection took inspiration from the spring / summer 2013 unique collection  in that it has a similar grown-up, pared-back and simple aesthetic."

The initial offering features a selection of 21 eveningwear separates and accessories, including georgette silk dresses; tailored jackets with chiffon panels; high-waisted trousers with silk overlays; sheer boxy blouses and oversized leather clutches - in a colour palette of nude and black with bursts of canary yellow and fuchsia. The collection will go on sale in selected stores internationally, with the first resort collection planned for November 2013. Both will continue to launch bi-annually going forward.

"The range is built on simple tailored separates in beautiful silks and broderies, giving customers the choice to either dress up or dress down individual pieces," explained Widen. "For example, we imagine the customer wanting to wear the fuchsia pink wide leg trouser with a simple jersey tee, or the textured black stripe skirt with a grey marl vest. This is how the Topshop girls wants to wear these pieces, they want them to work for day as well as evening."

Suzy Menkes: Galliano Deserves A Second Chance

Veteran  fashion journalist Suzy Menkes believes that John Galliano  should be given a "second chance", although the situation is "difficult". The designer recently cancelled a planned student workshop at Parsons The New College of Design in New York, after he refused to participate in a "frank forum discussion" about his career trajectory.

"It's a tragedy," she said of the anti-Semitic comments that Galliano made, which led to his Dior dismissal. "We know that creative people have all sorts of demons. I would never say that I love Hitler in any shape or form ever, and I don't know many people who would. That's not to say that somebody with such brilliant talent shouldn't be given some kind of second chance. But how you do that is difficult."

John Galliano
Speaking at a talk with Fern Mallis in New York, theInternational Herald Tribune fashion editor also showed her support for another designer - Victoria Bwckham

"[She] works incredibly hard," she said. "And no she doesn't go to Roland Mouret and ask him to make a few things for her."

She wasn't, however, as praising of musician-turned-designer Kanye West  - who showed during Paris Fashion Week for two seasons, in October 2011 and March 2012.

"What I would say to him, particularly after his absolutely brilliant performance on Monday [at the Met Ball], is, 'Don't give up the day job or, in his case, the night job,'" she said.

Hermès Exhibition Comes To London

See  how Hermes  Birkin bags and famed silk scarves are created at a new exhibition dedicated to the fashion house's craftsmanship. The showcase - that opens at London's Saatchi Gallery from May 21 to 27 - will see a selection of products constructed live, as artisans demonstrate how they make the luxury products in their workshops in France.

Hermes Leather Goods
The week-long Festival de Métiers exhibition is designed to "provide a fascinating insight into the traditions and values of Hermès in the crafting of fine objects," allowing the public to interact with the brand's craftspeople and see them at work. Visitors will be able to see the creation of watches, leather goods and fine-jewellery.

The exhibition was previously held in Beijing and Shenyang in China and, following its tenure in London, will move on to Dusseldorf. Admission to the Festival de Métiers at the Saatchi Gallery will be free of charge.

Chanel's Singapore Spectacular

Karl Lagerfelds  latest Chanel  spectacular took place in Singapore last night and, by Karl's standards, was a decidedly pared-back affair. The pre-spring/summer 2014 collection was unveiled inside a disused former nutmeg plantation - all concrete floors, whitewashed walls and electric lighting - to give the air of "tropics before air-conditioning".

"I like the idea that it's not impeccable. There's a romantic charm that new things cannot always have," said Lagerfeld. "It's not [just] about the historical details, but also the mood."

Guests such as Dakota Fanning, Anna Mouglalis and Carine Roitfeld watched as models including Cara Delevingne, Lindsey Wixson and Joan Smalls paraded a collection heavily influenced by its Southeast Asian setting, but with nods to the fashion house's heritage - specifically, Gabrielle Chanel's first store in Deauville in 1913 - with a touch of British sportsmanship thrown in for good measure. 

The opening of co-ordinating two-pieces, dresses over wide-leg trousers and cricket wear - complete with bats, V-neck jumpers and shin guards - made way for little lace playsuits, pleated silk dresses and dual-length skirts. Eveningwear came complete with shimmer, sequins, exaggerated appliqué and lashings of pearls - layered around the neck, wrapped around the waist and cuffing wrists - all in Lagerfeld's signature monochrome colour palette.

"It's a bit of Chanel's history and a bit of influence from this part of the world," Lagerfeld was quoted. "You don't get into the details, you reinvent the details."

Phillip Lim Launches High Street Collection

Phillip Lim will launch a high street collection for US chain Target on September 15, spanning men's and womenswear.

"What interests me about this opportunity is making a wardrobe for the modern-day citizen, with multi-faceted, muli-textural lives that are always on the go," said Lim. "I always believe that every day is an opportunity to create the day and set the mood. That's why it's important to have a wardrobe that addresses seven days a week, 24 hours a day."

Phillip Lim
The New York-based designer says that the line will encapsulate his label's mainline aesthetic, known for its understated, nonchalant take on femininity, but on a "bigger scale". Items will include dresses, T-shirts, leather jackets and bags, with prices starting at as little as $20 (£12.90).

Previous luxury names to collaborate with Target include Prabal Gurung, Matthew Williamson and Missoni.

Downton Abbey Clothing Collection Coming Soon

An official Downton Abbey clothing collection will launch later this year. The apparel line will go on sale alongside an extensive range of new merchandise - from beauty products to furniture - launched by NBC Universal and Carnival Films, the producers of the hit television programme.

Despite first airing in the UK in 2010, show bosses wanted to wait until the series was a hit in the US before branching out with their merchandise. Viewing figures didn't really pick up in America until series three - of which the finale drew a record audience of 7.9 million for channel PBS.

"We'll be working across an entire range of products coming out this year. From fashion, apparel and homeware and furniture to wallpapers, beauty products and stationary," confirmed Gareth Nearne, Downton Abbey's executive producer. "Some of these things have been available since 2012 - we publish books and have made a music album, but the more complex products take time."

A fourth series of Downton Abbey is currently being filmed at Highclere Castle in Berkshire, due to be aired in the UK in September 2013. The show will also make its debut in China later this year.

"In retail terms, the first series launched the program and the brand, the second year ratified it and the show didn't even hit its high point in the US until this year when series three ended," said Nearne. "It's very rare for a British drama to have this much retail potential and merchandising value [in the US]."

The period drama, created by Julian Fellowes, is set in the early 1900s. Potential stockists have yet to be named for the merchandise - which will presumably feature ladylike dresses and accessories as seen on characters such as Lady Mary and the Dowager Countess of Grantham (played by Michelle Dockery and Maggie Smith respectively).

"It's a very slow burn the moment you get into retail, it's extremely cautious, it has to test the established brand," Nearne told CNBC. "No one wants to launch products if the show's going to be a flop."