CÉLINE PARIS FASHION WEEK

On Saturday night, Slimane introduced Celine’s new woman, and she is a woman chic, knowing and a direct descendant of a particular stylish archetype of years past. In a little fashion irony, Slimane always installs a modernist set. This time, his first model descended from on high in a big light box, emerging onto the runway in all her retro glory. Her look: the sort of confident, sporty élan that ruled bourgeois Parisian style, and emanated well beyond that sphere, in that well-dressed period from the mid-Seventies into the Eighties, before the latter decade turned hideous. The aura travels well, across time and through modern life.

As usual, Slimane employed a laser-sharp focus. His primary message: a great, often mannish jacket atop an easy skirt or some variation of culottes, some full enough to be called, in the language of old, a split skirt, others streamlined into walking shorts. Continue reading

ROCHAS COUTURE IN PARIS

Alessandro Dell’Acqua has been delving into the couture heritage of Rochas for a couple of seasons, as a form of antidote to the streetwear flooding luxury fashion. Or perhaps he was inspired by the launch of the house’s latest fragrance, Mademoiselle Rochas Couture, a bottle of which was placed on each seat.

For fall, he took the exploration in two directions. The first was fabric, with materials including a heavy speckled tweed, cloqué textures, and a jacquard covered in wool tufts that looked like tiny feathers. The second was cut, via trapeze and cocoon constructions that harked back to the heyday of post-war haute couture.

A roomy black collarless tweed coat was trimmed with a thick band of jet beads at the hem, while a pleated black cloqué skirt was worn with an oversize short-sleeved shirt in ultrafine glossy black leather. Elbow-length black gloves and skintight black leather over-the-knee boots gave the look dramatic bite.That edge was missing from some of the other outfits, like a duo of tent dresses in frothy tiered organza. Indeed, some teetered dangerously close to period costume, such as a hump-backed black skirt suit, topped with a saucer-like crinkled plastic hat by Stephen Jones. A striking silhouette, for sure. Wearable? Not so much. Continue reading

BLACK FAKE FOR GUCCI CEO

The Gucci ceo was in New York Wednesday evening for the Marvin Traub Lecture. What was meant to be an interview spanning his career and his tenure at Gucci became heavily dominated by talk of the fashion house’s recent faux pas a balaclava-style sweater that critics said evoked blackface.

“Gucci is often in the news for their extraordinary commercial success, but also for their commitments to communities around the world.
Explanation of what went wrong, telling the audience that the sweater was debuted at a February 2018 show, but “nothing happened” until it was recently linked to blackface on Twitter, which sparked the social media storm.

He admitted that when his team first told him about this, he didn’t know what they were talking about, which he puts down to ignorance on his behalf. Continue reading

COPENHAGEN FASHION WEEK

The appeal of the Copenhagen fashion girl, often found riding a colorful bicycle and sporting pearl-encrusted hair clips, is here to stay.

Apart from charming the world with their flair for candy colors, cozy decorating and quirky accessories, the Danes mean business: Pioneers in the contemporary category, they are experts at offering trendy, fuss-free pieces at what they refer to as; honest price points. Now, they are ready to shift up a gear.

Sustainability in Denmark is less marketing ploy and more a way of life, so when Copenhagen Fashion Week’s newly appointed chief executive officer Cecilie Thorsmark laid out her ambitious plan of turning the three-day showcase into the most sustainable international fashion week, she found that local and international brands were quick to align with her mission.

British label Mother of Pearl opened Copenhagen Fashion Week, which ran from Jan. 29 to Feb. 1, with an intimate presentation of its seasonless, sustainably made range. Creative director Amy Powney said the growth of the brand in the Scandinavian market and customers; engagement with its sustainability mission encouraged her to get more involved. By showcasing a seasonless range, the idea was to make a statement that collections don’t need to be new to be exciting. Continue reading

GUO PEI DRAGON-NISSIMO

Guo Pei took to the temple, allowing her imagination to roam a spiritual safe haven of palatial proportions. With elaborate craftsmanship as the driving force, the designer offered a wide-ranging futuristic and Gothic-infused lineup, part warrior princess, part illustrious queen.

An unusual experiment with waders came at the start of the show, covered in golden-hued dragons and hanging open at the thigh to reveal a pair of bright blue HotPants. On top, more skin, with tasseled shoulder armor leaving an exposed bellybutton.

The complexity of her pieces can be overwhelming, even if they’re sent down the runway at a snail’s pace affording time for a good look. Models were perched on towering platform shoes  architectural pieces, too, like the garments.

Her dragons were everywhere, hailing from the Han dynasty, which had them slim and masterful at transforming themselves as was the clothing.

In an example of her East-meets-West aesthetic, Guo embellished a colorful tweed with large, randomly placed rhinestones, and used it to build one of the wider pieces, overlaying a body-fitting bustier.

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JACQUEMUS PARIS 2019

After launching men’s wear on a beach in the South of France last June, Simon Porte Jacquemus, is back to Paris. His new headquarters is four times bigger and he is entering a transitional phase as the brand grows. 69 Quai de Valmy, 75010 Paris

Simon Porte Jacquemus grew up in the countryside in Provence. He comes from a family of farmers and when he was a kid, he was fascinated by his dungarees which looked like a uniform. Continue reading

VUITTON SMOKES MARIJUANA IN PARIS

It is bingo for Bernard Arnault. He has bet on a new afro-american designer, Virgil Abloh. Yesterday he attended with his two sons at the front row. During the show there was a smell of marijuana. He was a choc between two worlds, as if a family of Boston was meeting an afro-american of Harlem. The mix gave a stunning collection. Continue reading

MY NAME IS BOND STREET

Cartier is stepping into its retail future, as it reopens the doors to its revamped London flagship on New Bond Street.

The boutique which is the result of an ambitious nine-month renovation project and even more years of planning offers an elegant and luxurious space that resembles a home and an exhibition space, as much as it does a shop floor.

"If you compare the historical boutique with the one we are opening, the base might be the same, but one has nothing to do with the other," said Laurent Feniou, Cartier’s U.K. managing director, during an interview. He added that the company has moved its London offices from Bond Street to Regent Street as part of the revamp process in order to dedicate the whole building to retail and reimagine what its London flagship can look like.

In line with Cartier’s overall ethos of marrying tradition and modernity, the new space emphasizes some of the listed building’s original features, including wooden panels and a grand wooden staircase that was previously hidden away. Continue reading

A TRAIN NAMED DESIRE

LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton said on Friday it had agreed to buy luxury travel operator Belmond Ltd., owner of the Venice Simplon-Orient-Express train and hotels including the Copacabana Palace in Rio de Janeiro, for $2.6 billion, significantly widening its footprint in the hospitality sector.

Established over 40 years ago with the acquisition of Hotel Cipriani in Venice, Belmond operates in 24 countries with a portfolio of 46 luxury hotel, restaurant, train and river cruise properties. It posted revenues of $572 million and adjusted EBITDA of $140 million in the 12 months ended Sept. 30.

“Belmond delivers unique experiences to discerning travelers and owns a number of exceptional assets in the most desirable destinations,” said Bernard Arnault, chairman and chief executive officer of LVMH. Continue reading