Monday, October 27, 2014

Beyoncé And Topshop Launch Activewear

Beyonce is launching an activewear label with Topshop, including "clothing, footwear and accessories across dance, fitness and sports categories". The singing superstar has created a 50-50 partnership with the British retailer, listed as Parkwood Topshop Athletic Ltd, to produce an athletic streetwear brand, which is - as yet - unnamed.

"I could not think of a better partner as I continue to grow the Parkwood business. I have always loved Topshop for its fashion credentials and forward thinking," Beyoncé said in a statement today. "Working with its development team to create and produce a technical and fashion-led collection is exciting and I'm looking forward to participating in all aspects of this partnership."

Philip Green - owner of Arcadia, which operates Topshop - was keen to distinguish this venture from other high-profile brand-celebrity collections on the market, noting that this is a "partnership" rather than a conventional collaboration.

"We have been looking at this category as fashion-inspired fitness develops, and know that this is right in our customers' heartland," Green said. "Creating a partnership with Beyoncé, one of the most hard-working and talented people in the world, who spends many hours of her life dancing, rehearsing and training is a unique opportunity to develop this category. Being partners with Beyoncé and her team, who have the greatest creative energy and enthusiasm, is inspiring for all of the team at Topshop. We have much to achieve in just under a year, but we are all up for the challenge, and look forward to delivering athletic streetwear in an inventive and exciting way."

Topshop confirmed that Green intends to hire a separate team to run the Beyoncé activewear label, including a creative director and designers.

Dolce And Gabbana Found Innocent

Stefano Gabbana and Domenico Dolce  have today been found innocent of tax evasion.

The highest court in Italy ruled the two designers - who have spent almost four years attending court appearances and indictments for the charges - not guilty, overturning two previous sentences at lower courts.

"We have always been honest and we are extremely proud of this recognition by the Italian Court of Justice," Dolce and Gabbana said in a straightforward statement following the verdict. "Vive l'Italia."

Dolce & Gabbana
The court took three hours deliberating behind closed doors, WWD reports, to reach the verdict with the five-member jury - headed by president Alfredo Teresi - also clearing the duo's co-defendants. The company's general director Cristiana Ruella; finance director Giuseppe Minoni; and accountant Luciano Patelli were also found not guilty.

The twosome were indicted for alleged tax fraud in 2010 but have always maintained their innocence. In April of this year, the court found them guilty and sentenced each to 20 months in prison but by May they announced their intention to appeal, calling the sentence ´inexplicable.´

Burberry's Beverly Hills Honour

Burberry will be awarded with one of Beverley Hills' highest accolades next month - the 22nd Rodeo Drive Walk of Style Award.

The award, which was established in 2003 by the City of Beverly Hills and the Rodeo Drive Committee, honours individuals and brands that have contributed significantly to the world of fashion, design and costume. Previous recipients include Valentino Garavani, Giorgio Armani, Missoni, Mario Testino and Tom Ford, as well as Princess Grace of Monaco and Salvatore Ferragamo posthumously.
The honour will be bestowed on November 19, coming hot on the heels of the label's new Rodeo Drive flagship, reports  WWD which will open on November 7th.

Chanel And Pharrell On Film

Karl Lagerfelf has enlisted Pharrell William to star in Chanel's latest mini movie.

Williams will star alongside two other Chanel favourites - Cara Delevingne and six-year-old Hudson Kroenig, WWD reports - among other "co-stars and dance partners," Lagerfeld said. Filmed in a Paris studio last week, the short was directed by Lagerfeld and is not the first time that Delevingne and Williams have teamed up in front of the camera - watch their shoot below.

The brand - which has previously created films starring Keira Knightley and Nicole Kidman, and unveiled its new No5 ad starring Gisele Bundchen last week - will show the short at its Metiers d´Art show in  Salzburg on December 2nd.

The show - which moves to a different country every season -  will take place at Schloss Leopoldskron, an 18th-century Rococo palace considered one of Austria's most beautiful.

British Fashion Awards 2014: The Nominees

The British Fashion Awards 2014 nominees have been announced, and Alexander McQueen and JW Alexander are leading proceedings with two nominations each.

Last year's Womenswear Designer of the Year winner, Christopher Kane, is nominated in the category again, and faces competition from Erdem and JW Anderson, while Alexander McQueen, Stella McCartney, and Victoria Beckham will battle it out for Designer Brand of the Year.

Sarah Burton
From further afield, Hedi Slimane for Saint Laurent, Nicolas Ghesquière for Louis Vuitton, and Raf Simons are up for International Designer, while Cara Delevingne, Sam Rollinson and Jourdan Dunn are in the running to win Model of the Year.

Additionally, the Isabella Blow Award for Fashion Creator - which honours an influential British stylist, make-up artist, art director, photographer or producer - and the BFC Outstanding Achievement award, which recognises someone whose work has had an outstanding impact on the global fashion industry, will also be given out on the night.

Here is the full list of nominees:

Emerging Womenswear Designer
Thomas Tait

Emerging Menswear Designer
Astrid Andersen
Craig Green
Lee Roach

Emerging Accessory Designer
Fernando Jorge
Yunus & Eliza

New Establishment Designer
Emilia Wickstead
Peter Pilotto
Simone Rocha

Establishment Designer
Margaret Howell
Roland Mouret

Womenswear Designer
Christopher Kane
JW Anderson

Menswear Designer
Christopher Bailey for Burberry
JW Anderson
Paul Smith
Tom Ford

Accessory Designer
Anya Hindmarch
Charlotte Olympia
Nicholas Kirkwood

International Designer
Hedi Slimane for Saint Laurent
Nicolas Ghesquière for Louis Vuitton
Raf Simons

Red Carpet Designer
Alexander McQueen
Mary Katrantzou

Alexander McQueen
Stella McCartney
Victoria Beckham

Cara Delevingne
Jourdan Dunn
Sam Rollinson

Creative Campaign
Louis Vuitton
Vivienne Westwood

The ceremony will take place on December 1 at the London Coliseum, and will be hosted for the second year in a row by TV presenter and comedian Jack Whitehall.

Marc The Masterpiece

That LVMH chairman and chief executive officer Bernard Arnault is a man who makes good decisions is undoubtable, but the comparison he has drawn to explain how he chooses his head designers will put it into context for many.

"When you choose a designer, it's an investment for the long term. It's the same with artwork. When I buy a piece of art, I think to myself, I will live with this work of art for decades," he said. "Today, young designers live in a world that is changing rapidly, where communication is instantaneous. What interests me is taking the long-term perspective."

Arnault & Jacobs
One masterpiece in particular made an especially profitable investment.

"Take the example of Marc Jacobs. When we bought the company in partnership with Marc, it was doing maybe $20 million in 1998. Today, we do more than $1 billion, so it's long term," he toldWWD. "I saw the potential with Marc, a great, great designer, and now we are working with him towards in the next two years hopefully, if the market allows, an IPO.

Oscar de la Renta Has Died

Oscar De La Renta has died. The New York-based designer passed away at home last night after a long battle with cancer. He was 82.

Born in the Dominican Republic, he travelled to Madrid to study painting at the Academy of San Fernando when he was just 18. His introduction to fashion began there, after he was enlisted by Cristóbal Balenciaga to sketch for him. He then went to Paris, where he worked at Lanvin, before moving to New York in the early Sixties and setting up his own label.

De la Renta's feminine aesthetic - borrowing sexiness from his Latin heritage and tempering it with a demure cut learned in Europe - as well as his easy, friendly demeanour, quickly made him a favourite with society ladies. Tall and handsome, he became not only the go-to designer but also a favourite plus one for famous women - from models and actresses to first ladies.

Oscar De la Renta
Underlining his continuing appeal, singer Taylor Swift - one of a crop of younger stars who chose his dresses for red-carpet events - tweeted: "My all-time favourite designer has passed away. Oscar, it was an honour to wear your creations and to know you. In loving memory."

Fellow designer Diane von Furstenberg highlighted De la Renta's fun-loving side, posting an Instagram picture of him clutching a microphone alongside the words: "Oscar de la Renta singing this summer in Greece! He will continue to sing in our hearts! Goodbye Oscar, we love you!"

"The gentleman of fashion you will always be," Naomi Campbell said, accompanied by a picture of herself as a young model on his catwalk, while Karlie Kloss said: "The world has lost one of the most extraordinary people who I have ever met. Thank you for helping me become the woman I am today and for always inspiring me to be better. There is simply no one like you."

"It was an enormous privilege to be dressed by Mr. de la Renta for so many occasions over the last 15 years," Sarah Jessica Parker wrote. "And especially meaningful to collaborate with him for  this year´s Met Gala.I will always be grateful that he allowed me to honor him by embroidering his name in scarlet on the hem of his glorious dress. He was an inspiration and a man like no other."

"Of all the designers in the world, Oscar de la Renta was the most reliable at designing clothes that made you feel beautiful," British Vogue editor Alexandra Shulman said this morning. "He stuck to his conviction about how women should look - elegant, joyful, feminine - no matter how fashion changed, but his designs never felt old or hackneyed. If you wore one of Oscar's dresses you felt you looked your best, which is one of the reasons that he was so often a first choice for ball gowns, weddings and public appearances throughout the world."

Although the designer always made it clear that he had no intention of retiring, he enlisted his brand´s first creative director earlier this month. Peter Copping joined the New York brand from Nina Ricci, ending months of speculation about who might be De la Renta's chosen talent. Designer John Galliano was given his first post-Dior return to fashion by De la Renta  who hired him for a temporary studio residency which many speculated may turn permanent,but it was not to be.

De la Renta married his wife Anne France Engelhard, who he knew as Annette, in 1989 after he organised a secret Christmas ceremony,WWD notes. He is survived by his wife as well as his son, Moises de la Renta; his three step-children, Beatrice Reed, Charlie Reed and Eliza Bolen; three sisters, who all live in the Dominican Republic; and nine grandchildren.

Eliza and Alex Bolen, De la Renta's step-daughter and step-son-in-law today released a statement on behalf of the company: "We write to let you know that Oscar passed away last night at home in Connecticut surrounded by family, friends and more than a few dogs. He died exactly as he lived: with tremendous grace, great dignity and very much on his own terms. While our hearts are broken by the idea of life without Oscar, he is still very much with us. Oscar's hard work, his intelligence and his love of life are at the heart of our company. All that we have done, and all that we will do, is informed by his values and his spirit. Through Oscar's example we know the way forward. We will make Oscar very proud of us by continuing in an even stronger way the work that Oscar loved so much."

LVMH: Time For A Smartwatch?

Fashion fans tempted by the Apple Watch´s glossy appearance as much as by its technological capbilities could be in for a treat, since LVMH might be getting in on the wearable tech act. The French conglomerate - which controls Louis Vuitton, Christian Dior, Céline, Givenchy, Fendi, Marc Jacobs and Kenzo, to mention just a few - is considering creating a watch to rival Apple's newest launch, and partnering with a tech company will be the first step.

Karl Lagerfeld: Fashion Meets Technology
"There are some talks taking place about a partnership," Jean-Claude Biver, president of LVMH's watch division, said. "Maybe in nine months, we will have a smartwatch."

In addition to a slew of fashion labels, LVMH also controls well-known watch brands including Hublot, Tag Heuer and Zenith - but the development would not be without its challenges, Biver acknowledges.

"A smartwatch is very difficult for us because it is contradictory," he told the Wall Street Journal. "Luxury is supposed to be eternal… How do you justify a $2,000 smartwatch whose technology will become obsolete in two years?"

Football's Newest Model Man

Andy Carroll may have achieved a transfer fee to rival any amount paid for David Beckham (£35 million to bring him from Newcastle to Liverpool), but he hasn't troubled Beckham's modelling achievements - until now. The West Ham and England striker recently signed with Select Models and his first job was the small matter of the Alexander Wang for H&M campaign. No big deal.

"I obviously had heard of Alexander Wang but until I'm walked on set I didn't realise how big this campaign was," Carroll told us. "I was being told that everyone who was working on the campaign was fashion royalty; the world's top stylists, hairdressers and photographers were all there! All the other models were top supermodels who were really friendly and made me welcome. It was all a bit surreal to be honest. The set and location were unbelievable; I've done photo shoots for West Ham and England before but nothing like this, there were so many different people running around with cameras and TV screens everywhere, it was seriously impressive."

Andy Carroll
Reportedly pitted against more than 200 other candidates for the spot, Carroll admits he was "definitely not expecting to get it" but is enjoying the new string to his bow, which he kept to himself until the image was unveiled.

"I thought I would wait for the images to come out first, it would be a bit more of a surprise to everyone that way," he said. "I haven't really asked my family and friends directly what they think. I think they think the picture is pretty cool though, it's a bit different for them and me, to see me pictured out of my football kit."

Whether he's asked his family or not, you might imagine his teammates would have been more forthcoming with their critique? But Carroll is unfazed.

"Modelling has never been something I have considered, I guess my focus has always been on my football," he said. "There is plenty of banter that goes on in the dressing room every day, but there are worse things to get stick about than being a model!"

Carroll met the man himself on set and, rather than educating him on the ways of "soccer", chatted with the Balenciaga creative director on matters close to both their hearts.

"I had a good chat with Alexander, turns out we both have a keen interest in trainers and he had noticed the ones I was wearing before I did my shoot," Carroll told us. "I guess you could say we discussed fashion!"

"Ha ha, are you serious?" he laughed. "I don't think I'm quite ready to take on Becks yet. I will leave that to him for the time being, I'm going to concentrate on the day job of scoring goals for West Ham and hopefully England. We will have to wait and see what everyone else thinks of the campaign first; others will judge that. Football is my main priority and always will be, but you never know what could happen when I retire, which is hopefully a long way off. You never know what opportunities there might be, I'm pretty relaxed about the situation, but it's certainly an avenue that I would consider."

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Alexander Wang's Sporting Future

Alexander Wang could be considered one of fashion's busiest men. This week, he has unveiled his inaugural H&M collection - marking the ten year anniversary of the high-street brand's designer collaborations and the first from an American fashion house - while next year his own eponymous label will celebrate a decade in business. Add to this his role as Balenciaga´s creative director and you'd think the designer had enough on his plate, but his work with H&M has sparked yet another passion - active wear.

Unlike his H&M designer predecessors - which include Isabel Marant, Stella McCartney, Karl Lagerfeld and Versace - Wang chose not to create the usual archive-inspired capsule, but designed an almost entirely original collection dominated by performance wear.

"Approaching active wear was exciting for me as I've always wanted to do it, but having that access to the resources - the factories and the garment mills - was a completely different process to what I usually do," he told us. "It's a whole new skill set. You have to do your due diligence and testing, but it is something that I have so much passion and love for, that I'd love to have a future opportunity to do something like this that is more permanent."

This approach to design was also geared to appeal to both Wang's current customer base and the mass market that working with H&M brings: "It's also a collection that touches many different tiers for many different audiences," he told us. "It doesn't matter if you're a luxury customer or an H&M customer - if you need gym clothes, if you work out, if you're active, there's a piece for everyone."

As for his own sporting prowess, Wang admitted his passion was very much style based.

"I don't do any sports! I only wear sports clothing."

Chanel's Feminist Protest Explained

Being part of Karl Lagerfeld's  Chanel catwalk ¨protest¨ may have seemed like fun to onlookers, but one of the models involved - Gigi Hadid - said it wasn't as easy as it looked.

"Honestly it was such a surreal experience, it felt kind of out-of-body," Hadid said. "The crew said, 'Yes, it's a fake protest, but you need to go into this realising that you're on the world stage. Everyone talks about the Chanel show, everyone is going to see it and we're really setting a protest for you guys - for what Karl sees in all of the amazing women that he works with.' That really inspired me… Everyone was kind of shy and didn't want to go out there yelling and screaming. We had to do a four-hour rehearsal because no one would actually yell, but once they gave us the pep talk, we were all so into it."

Chanel: Fashion Uprising
Enjoyable as it may have been, the staged protest prompted many discussions about whether a fashion show is the appropriate place for a feminist march - with some even suggesting that it trivialises the cause. Lagerfeld, unsurprisingly, is unrepentant.

"My mother was very much a feminist and I thought it was something right for the moment," Lagerfeld told Fashionista. "I couldn't care less if people are for or against. It's my idea. I like the idea of feminism being something light-hearted, not a truck driver for the feminist movement."

Team Galliano Is Go

John Galliano has wasted no time in assembling his dream team at Maison Martin Margiela, reportedly enlisting favoured collaborators from his time at Christian Dior and at his own label.

Dior muse and confidant Vanessa Bellanger, Alexandre Roux from John Galliano, Jean-Yves Mustiere, most recently at Roberto Cavalli, and Galliano's former studio manager Rafaele Hardy are all said to be Margiela bound, although - in line with the house's penchant for anonymity - none of the appointments have been confirmed.

The house declined to comment on the names being linked to Galliano's arrival, saying only that Margiela "still considers itself a collective under the guidance of a creative director". A spokesperson told  WWD that the design team under Galliano will be a mix of current employees and new members.

John Galliano's move to Oscar de la Renta was never completed and rumours at the time suggested that it may have been because he was unable to bring the team he needed to New York with him, so his Margiela start - surrounded by those who have worked with him for years - should be a more comfortable fit.

Amber: How The Supermodels Treated Me

When Amber Valleta burst on to the fashion scene in the early Nineties she was seen as one of the new wave of supermodels, following in the footsteps of the girls for whom the name was invented. Contrary to stories of rivalry between the old and new model guard, Valletta asserts that the relationship was more than friendly.

¨Shalom (Harlow) and I were living together then, and one day she brought Kate Moss over to the apartment and was like 'I just met this cute little girl, we fell in love on this shoot, we're friends.' Kate didn't even have Calvin Klein yet!" she revealed. "The three of us would just kind of skulk around everywhere. Then the big girls - Linda, Christy, and Naomi - started being nice to us and showing us the ropes. It was so different - we probably weren't treated as well as models are now, but I don't think they have as much fun as we did."

The model-turned-actress also reflected on the pivotal moment of her career which, much like her predecessor Linda Evangelista, was when she cut her hair.

"When I was 18, I told [studio hair stylist] Yannick d'Is that I wanted to cut my hair short and he was like, 'No, no, no!' But he didn't realise how young I was," she told  Into The Gloss. "At the time, I had this bob and it curled under, I looked like a woman! Once he realised, he was like 'You're right, we have to chop it off.' So one day, we left a shoot, cut my hair off in my bathroom, and the rest is history. I was on the cover of Vogue a few months later."

De La Renta Confirms Copping

Oscar De La Renta has confirmed that he has appointed  Peter Copping as creative director. The news comes after weeks of speculation that Copping would assume the role, following confirmation of his exit from Nina Ricci, where he has held the position of artistic director for five years.

It marks the first time that De la Renta has brought somebody on board in this capacity, in a move that the veteran designer hopes will help him achieve longevity for his brand through his own vision.

"Our industry has not always done the best job when it comes to changes in design leadership," he told  WWD. "My hope is that, in leading this selection, and actively participating in the transition, I can ensure the right design future for our company and brand… I'm very happy that Peter has agreed to join us. He is a great talent and along with our shared design sensibilities, we both have a deep curiosity about the wider world, from music and art to architecture and gardens."

Peter Copping
While Copping will oversee all categories, he will continue to report directly to De la Renta - who will remain actively involved in the brand's design aesthetic - and CEO Alex Bolen when he starts on November 3. His first collection will be unveiled at the fashion house's autumn/winter 2015 show in New York next February.

"After a career of 20 years in Paris, this is an important next step for me," said Copping of the move. "Oscar de la Renta has defined American elegance for generations of women, and the opportunity to work with him and help ensure the future of the brand is very exciting."

Copping was replaced by Guillaume Henry, formely creative director at Carven, at Nina Ricci earlier this month.

The Hackney Fashion Lab

Hackney is increasing its fashion-hub status by the day: tomorrow sees the launch of The Fashion Lab, a collaborative effort between Hackney Council, the Design-Manufacturer Innovation Support Centre (DISC) and the  Centre for Fashion Enterprise (CFE) to facilitate young designers and graduates with equipment and studio space as they begin their careers.

"London has always been renowned for creativity in fashion. We expect this new facility will drive London forward as the heart of unlocking creativity and supporting fashion designers through technical innovation," said Wendy Malem, director of CFE and DISC.

Hackney Fashion Lab
Located at London Fields' social enterprise site The Trampery (another designer studio hub), the work space will be available to be booked online for two-hour slots at affordable rates - this money will then be reinvested back into the Lab for additional equipment, training for designers and other business support. Designers will have their pick of equipment: industrial sewing and overlocking machines, ironing stations and pattern-cutting tables.

"The collaboration behind The Fashion Lab has been crucial in enabling this project and once again shows how, by coming together, we can create opportunities for the next generation of small start-up businesses in Hackney's expanding economy," said Guy Nicholson, cabinet member for regeneration.

For further information, visit

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Lagerfeld Remakes Vuitton's Monogram

When six masters of modern design - Karl Lagerfeld, Christian Louboutin, Frank Gehry, Rei Kawakubo, Marc Newson and Cindy Sherman - were called upon to reinterprate the famous Louis Vuitton monogram, we were prepared for something pretty special. From studded clutches and fur-covered rucksacks, to boxing gloves and a matching punchbag, the capsule collection delivers plenty of surprises. In this exclusive film, designer Chanel favourite Saskia de Brauw sports Lagerfeld's monogram, reinvented to pack a punch.

Inside The V&A´s McQueen

Since the news that Savage Beauty - the exhibition on the work of  Alexander McQueen would be arriving at London´s Victoria & Albert Museum after a sell-out run at New York's Metropolitan Museum of Art in 2011, where it became the Costume Institute´s most popular exhibition ever, fashion lovers have wondered what the British version will feature. What might be included that is specific to London? What pieces might have been unearthed or become available since the NY show? How will the changes in curation alter visitors' experiences? And now we know.

Typical Alexander McQueen
A room dedicated to McQueen´s years as a fledgling London designer will indeed be added to the original Met line-up, exploring the years that shaped his talent and interests as he honed his skills as a pattern cutter in the city where he was born and raised. Also new for London is an homage to one of McQueen's dearest friends: Kate Moss. The hologram of the British supermodel - a spectacular feat of technology that closed McQueen's Widows of Culloden catwalk show (autumn/winter 2006-7) in a billowing organza gown - will be restored to almost life size, having appeared Tinkerbell-sized in New York.

More than 30 new garments will be displayed, including several pieces that couldn't be transported to New York - the breathtaking red ballet dress from The Girl Who Lived in the Tree (autumn/winter 2008-9) and a white feathered dress from The Horn of Plenty (autumn/winter 2009-10). Gainsbury and Whiting, the production company that collaborated with Alexander McQueen in staging his catwalk shows, has also come on board to work with the V&A on the exhibition - helping create an atmosphere very much like his shows within the museum´s large exhibition space.

Alexander The Great
"I am thrilled that this magnificent show is coming to London and feel passionately that the V&A is its natural home," Martin Roth, Director of the V&A, said. "Lee Alexander McQueen presented his work here during his lifetime and studied the museum's wide-ranging public collections of tailoring, painting, art, photography and books as inspiration for his visionary designs, yet remained vigorously anti-establishment and a true provocateur."

The popular Cabinet of Curiosities section will be expanded by the V&A, with help from key McQueen collaborators including jeweller Shaun Leane and milliner Philip Treacy, and will boast more than 40 new pieces, displayed in a double-height gallery interspersed with footage of almost all of McQueen's shows.

McQueen - A Talent Greater Than Fashion
Curated by Claire Wilcox - senior curator of fashion at the V&A and professor in fashion curation at London College of Fashion - the exhibition will present concepts and themes central to McQueen's work throughout his career. From heritage and ancestry, and nature and the natural world, to the obsession with technology and handcraft that is still central to the McQueen brand today.

"Savage Beauty is a celebration of the most imaginative and talented designer of our time," Sarah Burton, creative director of Alexander McQueen, said today. "Lee was a genius and a true visionary who pushed boundaries, challenged and inspired. He believed in creativity and innovation and his talent was limitless."

Best Friends: Lee & Kate
The finale of the exhibit will centre on McQueen's last fully realised collection, Plato´s Atlantis (spring/summer 2010) Fusing the designer's interest in nature and technology, it was widely considered to be his greatest achievement.

"The Savage Beauty exhibition at the Met was one of the most successful fashion exhibits of all time and it's terrific that the V&A are mounting their version which is going to add to what has already been shown," Vogue editor Alexandra Shulman said today. "The imagination and creativity of Lee McQueen was exceptional and the house of Alexander McQueen continues to excel not only in fashion but also in the sense of drama and visual excitement which will make this exhibition so exciting."

Kate Moss Laid Bare

Kate Moss was laid bare - and then filled with champagne - at the launch of the 34 Kate Moss coupe.
Kate Moss
Hot London restaurant 34, off Grosvenor Square, hosted a private lunch to show off its new champagne coupes designed from a mould of Kate Moss's breasts to celebrate the model's fortieth birthday and her 25 years in the fashion business.

Fashion Friends
The glasses were created by British artist Jane McAdam Freud, daughter of the late Lucian Freud, who famously painted Kate in 2002.

"The plaster felt quite heavy," said Kate, drawing Kate's silhouette in the air as she explained the process of the modelling of her body shape.

Phillip Green
Kate was wearing a taut tail coat by Bella Freud, mannish trousers by Saint Laurent, high heels from Christian Louboutin, and a glamorous shoulder bag by Bulgari.

The coupe designer explained the process: the original mould was made from the malleable pink gummy material used by dentists, before the basic shape was created in glass with a lacy Thirties decorative pattern added.

The End Result
The idea came from the early invention of the champagne coupe, or cup, supposedly modelled around Marie Antoinette's left breast.

Over a first course of salmon and salad, Kate and friends seemed to have no problem emptying the champagne glasses to look at the handiwork inside.

Keeping A-Breast Of The Party
The Kate coupes will be used in the 34 restaurant and its private upstairs Tracey Emin room, where drawings by the British artist offer more bared breasts on which to build a glass - or two.

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Tried & Tested: BOTOX

We all care about fashion and we all care about our appearance. Today, it is important for men to look and feel good both inside and out, especially with the popularity and pressure from the media and fashion world, where you’re every action can be posted, blogged or Instagramed.

My previous articles before have talked about the growing popularity and acceptance of ´male cosmetic surgery.´

This summer, which seems now a distant memory thanks to the longer nights and colder days, I was invited to test a variety of male beauty samples for the magazine, and give my opinion on themNow comes my turn to try and test a cosmetic treatment, so here goes.

Having been involved in the fashion industry from the age of nineteen, where I found my feet as a model, I have always been conscious of my appearance and how I present myself. Even models of all ages, all sexes (and all levels of fame) suffer from occasional insecurity glitches (Jon Kortajarena for example, who smokes heavily and fears yellow nicotine stained teeth.) In my ´younger days´ I used to hop out bed and into the shower. My beauty regime those days was pretty much body wash, shampoo, moisturiser and hair wax. However, with the increase in my years, came an increase in my cosmetics and time for ´preening.´

I am in my mid-thirties, and thankfully people still compliment me on the way I look and the way I dress. It can take me anything up to an hour to prepare myself in the morning before leaving the house (thankfully, that includes eating breakfast.) And, although people I meet and greet are always positive and complimentary towards me, I was never quite happy with. My personal appearance. Specifically some vertical lines running across my forehead, and what I considered to be a pair of HUGE vertical lines running beneath my eyebrows (apparently  I was the only one who noticed these.)

I often wondered how much more confidence I would have with these lines removed (and, actually even if people would notice….) So, I set about doing a personal case study exclusively for Men Style Fashion. The project? My skin.

Nu Cosmetic Clinic within the domain of cosmetic surgery is certainly one of the industry leaders. Specialising in a multitude of comprehensive treatments for both female and male. They can provide treatments for face, body and hair that can allow you to create or amend what nature took away (or never gave you.) A range of full treatments can be found here.

Nu Cosmetic has thirteen clinics located all over the UK and I was invited to attend a consultation with Pankaj Kishore at the Liverpool clinic in the North West of England.

On the Thursday afternoon, approaching the clinic I was somewhat apprehensive in case I ended up with ´Dr Spok´ (I had seen this before, where the male’s eyebrows were dramatically lifted along with the forehead) or ´Duck face´ (where the treatment was so tight it affected the overall appearance of my face.) Regardless, I made my way down the palatial conurbation of Liverpool´s Rodney Street to the clinic which was nestled in a detached off street position.

After introducing myself at the reception desk, I was invited to sit in the waiting room, where a plethora of ´before and after´ stories were advertised along with an enviable list of remediation’s and possibilities.

I was invited to my consultation by a smartly dressed Pankaj Kishore, who welcomed me to the clinic showing me some of the impressive treatment areas, on my way upstairs. Even now I struggle to remember what the purposes of these rooms were; I do remember minor operating and laser treatment areas. To me it was like a set of Gattaca, just as fully equipped, just as impressive.

Panjak Kishore
It was in the private consultation room upstairs that I started to get nervous. Pankaj listened attentively as I described my problem, immediately put me at ease. Having worked in the cosmetic industry for several years, commenced by giving me a background into his education and training within the Nu Cosmetic Clinic Group along with a description of the services and products they offer as a business service. Of course, with me always  being one to ask questions, Pankaj told me about the most popular female treatments (breast enhancements) and make treatments (lipo-sculpture and hair regeneration) Cosmetic surgery, although growing in popularity still only presents a ratio of  1:3 for men to woman.

¨If I had to give an example of a male, it would be Tom Cruise. He has certainly had work done, but to a very discreet level and a very high standard. This to me, is what male cosmetic surgery should reflect.´
Pankaj Kishore

Enough of the procrastination and questioning from me. Now came the time for the treatment.

I was led into a tall brightly lit treatment room which had a bed in the middle. A nurse introduced herself to me (I will call her Cathy). She sat me down at the desk, where I was invited to fill out a full history of my medical details (a standard practice really, factors relating to allergies, medications and illnesses.)

Treatment Room

Cathie then brought out a ´face map´ and confirmed my fears about my ´lines.´ apparently I had lines (or wrinkles) after all.

´The occipitofrontalis muscles produce the transverse wrinkles across the width of the forehead, and the corrugator supercilii muscles produce vertical wrinkles between the eyebrows above the nose´
I had the ´typical´ type of middle aged male skin. The lines on my forehead (going across and down) were usual and could easily be treated with Botox or Allegran Vistabel to give it the clinic´s title.

Next step, after I had been checked and diagnosed by Cathy was to perform the procedure. My main concern here was seeing the needles, as I have somewhat of a phobia. (Ask my dentist, he´ll confirm this.) After cleansing my face with an antibacterial wash, Cathy asked me to exaggeratedly frown my forehead and eyes several times so she could pin point the main areas to target the Botox into (which she marked with a small pen). Then came the next step. My eyes were closed for the injections (I had a look at the needle after, and it was quite small with a very fine needle.) I had a series of 4-6 injections between the eyes and then the forehead area took around 6-8. To ´balance´ the effects of the Botox, the eye area was done, again with 4-6 injections.

This may seem a lot, but small doses are used over a larger area to give a much more uniform result Cathy advised me. Also it got mathematical. If you are lifting the skin in some directions, then you have to be all round uniform and lift it in every direction. The treatment around my eyes would not only counteract any ageing, but help to ´balance´ the overall effect of the treatment. She was also quick to highlight that this type of localised treatment can avoid the skin being over tightened or the forehead and eyebrows being excessively lifted, which was my main concern.

After my final injection, I was asked to remain on the bed for several minutes. I initially presumed this would be to recover. But I can say the course of treatment was not as painful as I had anticipated. Some brief localised stinging was felt, ultimately I was having a cosmetic treatment undertaken, which would give me a confidence boost.

Some standard doe´s and don’ts like try not to lie flat for several hours after the treatment, and avoid flying on the same day, meant that my skin had an excellent chance of attaining the result promised.

I concluded my treatment and thanked Cathy, then went next door to Pankaj to report my findings. ´It was not a traumatic as I had imagined. Cathy explained the whole procedure, which I was not expecting.´ I exclaimed to Pankaj. ´We are not that type of clinic´ he said, informing me of the code of ethics that Nu Cosmetic Clinic Group undertakes. ´Sometimes people call us the day before to book in directly for surgery, which we refuse. We always speak to the client to give them full information and alternatives to their requests.´ The strict age criteria for surgery, as well as the types of treatment they only offer mean that the clinic work with the client and medical watchdogs to provide an ethical and regulated service.

Attracting a host of model, media and celebrity clients from the North West of England and beyond, Pankaj reaffirmed his claim that all work however major or minor is discussed in detail and carried out to the highest quality. I therefore had no need to be concerned with the ´Spok´ or ´Duck´ face I was originally apprehensive about acquiring.

So what are my thoughts on Botox? Well, have a look at the after picture. Some of my friends still ´cannot see any difference´ while some now ´actually can, as I look younger.´ I do, certainly feel more confident for sure. I am delighted with the result and the service. Cathy advised me to follow up the treatment every 3-4 months which I intend to under the competent hand of Pankaj.

Male cosmetic beauty is a certainty today, but like me just make sure you choose a company who care as much about their appearance as they do about yours.

Thank you to Rory Lewis Photographer for the before and after images.

Why Fashion Needs Galliano

Some things in fashion - and in life - are indisputable, and John Galliano's talent is one of those things. The news of his appointment at the creative helm of Maison Martin Margiela has engendered excitement and speculation within a fashion industry keen to see clothes again weaved from his unparalleled imagination. A glimpse of Kate Moss's Galliano designed wedding dress in 2011 or the catwalk results of his 'temporary studio residency' at Oscar de la Renta last year have shown what he is still capable of - but Margiela has put him back in charge.

John With Muse Kate
"It is wonderful for John to be able to do what he does so well," Vogue editor Alexandra Shulman said today. "It's been a waste not being able to benefit from his extraordinary passion for the creation of clothes for the past three years."

As returns go, Galliano's gentle re-emergence from the fashion hinterland has been about as gradual as one can imagine. Exiled by many - but by no means all - following his dismissal from Dior and subsequent trial for anti-Semitism more than three years ago, Galliano has engaged in a strategic re-entry: with only select interviews and limited public appearances leading up to his creative rebirth. Before entertaining any reintroduction to the industry, he began a lengthy period of contemplation and recovery from the addiction issues that precipitated and accompanied his Dior collapse. Living in LA, away from the pace of Paris; building personal relationships; making amends; teaching and mentoring fashion students - and now with a lifestyle to rival a vegan chef - Galliano is healthy mentally and physically, cleansing mind and body as he approaches his new beginning.

Fashion Royalty
"Although I have lost a lot, I have gained so much," he told French news programme Le Supplement last month. "I mean, I'm alive today. I've been able to work on myself, and, eventually, when I do come back into the industry, I know the industry won't have changed, but my perspective on it has changed."

A stronger, more resilient, more prepared Galliano is more equipped than he was three years ago to deal with the pressures of the business of fashion - but are consumers also ready to welcome him back?

Fashion Finally Forgives
"There will be those who will welcome John's return to the industry and greet it positively and those that won't," Joan Burstein - founder of London boutique Browns and one of Galliano's earliest supporters from his graduate days - told us. "Browns will continue to wish him both happiness and success, following this next chapter for him with great interest."

"Maison Martin Margiela is a key partner for Selfridges - from both a commercial and creative perspective," Judd Crane, Selfridges's director of womenswear added. "We are delighted for both Margiela and John Galliano, and very much look forward to seeing what one of the UK's leading talents will bring to the house."

Time To Repent
"John Galliano is one of the most talented, important designers of our time, and I am delighted he is coming back at Margiela," Jonathan Newhouse - chairman and chief executive of Condé Nast International, and a vocal supporter of Galliano throughout his court case and subsequent recovery - told us today. "He has been missed. I met with him last week in Paris and he is in terrific form. He has fans all over the world, and they will be eager to see what he will create."

And that "what" is the question on everyone's lips. Following just a year-long stint at Givenchy in the mid-Nineties, Galliano and Dior became wedded to one another more closely than any designer and brand except perhaps Lagerfeld and Chanel - making the thought of him finding a new fashion love almost unimaginable. So what will Galliano at Margiela look like?

The arrival of the world's most flamboyant and dramatic fashion talents at one of the world's most understated brands is a strange fit to some eyes. To witness Galliano's almost ubiquitous historical references manifested in a brand obsessed with the modern will be interesting to say the least. Margiela prides itself on teamwork and anonymity - never naming a designer or consultant openly since the founder's departure in 2009 - which provides a stark contrast to Galliano's Dior tenure, during which he was held aloft across the world, attending every event and putting his glitzy seal on every product. Taking a man whose fascination for invention, for fabric, for the soul of clothes, to a house with a strong utilitarian foundation may seem foolhardy - but the labels latest couture show, although not by Galliano's hand, reminded us that there is much room for the invention and humour found in his early work at this house.

Galliano's New Start At Margiela
Perhaps this juxtaposition, this clash of warm and cold between the brand and the man, will produce a more comfortable temperature for all? On one side, bringing Margiela - once frozen from all media, and in some ways consumers, by its reclusive founder - into the warmth felt by one of fashion's favourite figures could be a move of commercial genius by its owner Renzo Rosso. For Galliano, perhaps creating an climate a little cooler to work in than the pressure cooker that was Dior will be welcome. Following fellow Paris-based designer Jean Paul Gaultier's ready-to-wear retirement last week - citing the "frenetic pace of collections" expected by the industry today, leaving him with inadequate time to "find fresh ideas and to innovate" - Margiela would be advised to retain if not their design anonymity then at least their reluctance to place all the pressure or praise at one person's door. A cool environment, with occasional warm adulation, could be just the conditions for the most beautiful Galliano creations yet to flourish.

Kate And Naomi On Gogglebox

Picture the scene: it's just a regular Friday night in North London; Kate Moss and Naomi Campbell are cuddled up on the couch, perhaps with a takeaway or some tea and biscuits, and Noel Gallagher reclines on a nearby armchair. Famously friends for years, Moss and Campbell will soon let us in on their television-watching ritual after signing up to appear on an episode of Channel 4 programme Gogglebox.

Kate And Naomi
The show, which films ordinary families as they watch - and often hilariously comment on - the week's biggest shows, has enlisted some celebrity watchers for a one-off charity special. Set to be screened on October 17 as part of Channel 4's Stand Up For Cancer fundraiser, the show will also feature the former Oasis musician as well as a raft of other stars.

"Kate is good friends with Noel and Naomi," a source pointed out to the Daily Mail ."When she knew she would have them by her side she did not hesitate to agree. She likes TV and is a fan of Gogglebox, Bake Off and X Factor."

SJP: "Heard The News?"

We know you've heard these rumours before only to have your hopes dashed, but this time maybe - just maybe - Sex And The City 3 could be happening at last. Sarah Jessica Parker, as well as the show's writers, have teased a possible third installment of the film, but now Kristin Davis - who played one of the four leads, Charlotte York, is in on the chatter.

"@SJP Miss YOU XOXOXO!!" Davis tweeted on Friday, along with a photo of herself and her co-star at the Sex and the City 2 premiere, to which Parker replied "@KristinDavis Me too you! Heard the news?x"

Sarah Jessica Parker
One excited fan asked Parker what the news might be, People reports, and the actress replied mysteriously: "That news zooming around. X sj."

Jennifer Hudson, who starred in the first big-screen adaptation of the series, added fuel to the fire last week, saying: "I think it might be [happening]. Somebody just came to me talking about that. So if it's in the talks, it might happen. So look for it."

Galliano Returns To Fashion

John Galliano will restart his fashion career as creative director of Maison Martin Margiela. The move confirms runours that began last week that Galliano was headed to the Paris-based house.

"Margiela is ready for a new charismatic creative soul," Renzo Rosso, president of OTB, which controls Margiela, said today. "John Galliano is one of the greatest, undisputed talents of all time - a unique, exceptional couturier for a maison that always challenged and innovated the world of fashion. I look forward to his return to create that fashion dream that only he can create, and wish him to here find his new home."

He is expected to show his first designs for the house in January during Paris Couture Week, and will take charge of all of Margiela's collections, including ready-to-wear. The collection will the first under Galliano's creative control since he was dismissed by Dior in March 2011.

Margiela himself who retired from the house in 2009, was famously reclusive - seldom speaking to the media or appearing in public, and the house has continued in that vein, remaining reluctant to hold a designer aloft as its "face". This may suit Galliano, who has been careful to ensure his re-entry into fashion is a ´step`-by-step´ process, in line with his recovery from addiction issues.

The Sound Of Chanel

Never mind The Sound of Music - the sound of  Chanel will be reverberating around the streets of Salzburg this December as Karl Lagerfeld takes the fashion house's biannual Metiers d´Art show to the Austrian city.

Lagerfeld chooses the location of each show based on places that have strong ties to founder Gabrielle Chanel´s life and inspirations and has previously revealed that the label's famous little black jacket, designed by Chanel in the Fifties, was inspired by a jacket worn by a lift attendant in a hotel near Salzburg.

The show - which has traversed the globe, popping up in Edinburgh, Dallas and Dubai to name just a few - will take place at Schloss Leopoldskron Castle,one of the country's most famous Rococo buildings well-known for its exquisite stucco works of art.

The venue is an apt one, given that it is the scale of the Metiers d'Art show that is always one of its most impressive elements, something that Bruno Pavlovsky, Chanel's president of fashion,explained to us last year enables the fashion house to find "a way of turning our attention to an important market, of offering to our clients there, and often also offering the public, the opportunity to experience the brand in a new way."

Abercrombie & Fitch Taken To Court

The US Supreme Court has agreed to look at a case brought by the US Equal Employment Opportunity Commission [EEOC] that accuses Abercrombie & Fitch of refusing to hire a Muslim woman for wearing a headscarf.

The case backdates to 2008 when prospective employee, Samantha Elauf, interviewed for a position at a branch in Tulsa, Oklahoma and was given a "high-score" by the interviewer, Heather Cooke, reports The Guardian.This high score was then dropped after points were deducted in the "appearance and sense of style" category, when Cooke spoke to her district manager, who reportedly enquired specifically about Elauf's headscarf.

In its defence, the company argue that wearing a headscarf would conflict with its "look policy" and, despite Cooke explaining that she assumed Elauf wore the headscarf for religious reasons, as Elauf didn't request an official exemption from the policy, they didn't need to facilitate it.

"It is undisputed that Samantha Elauf did not inform Abercrombie that her religious beliefs required her to wear a headscarf when she was at work," the company's legal representation argued. "It is axiomatic that an employer must have actual notice that an applicant's mandatory religious practices conflict with an employment requirement."

The EEOC has countered this defence, saying that it creates a loophole for religious discrimination. This is the second time that the EEOC have brought the case. The U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Oklahoma originally found in favour of the EEOC, before the 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals reversed the ruling in favour of Abercrombie & Fitch.

"By holding that an employer may discriminate against a job applicant or employee based on practices that the employer correctly believes to be religious, so long as the employer does not have 'actual knowledge' of the need for religious accommodation … opened a safe harbour for religious discrimination," said lawyers for the EEOC, referring to the 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeal ruling.