Monthly Archives: February 2012

Adele in Giorgio Armani at the Grammy Awards (AP)

The perils of betting on celebrity dressing were potently illustrated at the Grammy awards. The night’s superstar, Adele, wore — wait for it — Giorgio Armani to accept her six gongs, before changing into Clements Ribeiro for her performance and Burberry for her finale.

I say “perils” because yesterday, as I made the rounds of New York Fashion Week, I heard two separate design camps claim she would be wearing them.

The first time was at the Zac Posen show, when an insider mentioned that, fingers crossed, Adele was going to be wearing one of their dresses. It wasn’t 100 per cent sure, she said, but it looked good.

Posen is a red-carpet favourite, and both Reese Witherspoon and Elle MacPherson wore him to the Golden Globes last month, so this seemed plausibe. Read more

So far the hands-down best moment of New York fashion week (for me, of course) has been the Miguel Adrover show, a mad romp back in time to the days when there was an actual underground in this city’s designers, and men and women existed who just Had to Make Fashion, with nary a care for a commercial component. Read more

It’s Saturday, week one of fashion month, the four-city circus of shows that begins in New York and continues in London, Milan and Paris. As you read this, chances are I am by the catwalk at Prabal Gurung, or Alexander Wang, or Band of Outsiders. Do you wish you were by my side? Would you love to experience the emotional highs and lows of the bizarre fashion system – make a collection, show a collection, hopefully sell a collection?

The colour gurus at the Pantone Colour Institute have released their predictions for top colours of Fall 2012, just in time for New York Fashion Week. And why, you ask, should non-fashion people care? Because, I say, this will give us a sense of what we are going to see on the general election trail this fall.

(It is also an indication of the shades we may be inexplicably, but inexorably drawn to as we embark on post-holiday, back-to-work shopping.) Read more

It’s my belief that the iPad, for all its marvelous abilities to show films, make it look like you are reading actual books, and otherwise replace most electronics in your life, is actually beloved of the majority of men I know because it lets them play Angry Birds, or Zombie Smash, or Hungry Shark no matter where they are. And I do not think I am alone in this, judging by a new Prada video, which taps into exactly those gaming urges.
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There’s been a bit of a hoo-ha over the last few days in NYC over a video Stella McCartney made for People For The Ethical Treatment of Animals to convince fashionistas, in town for the ready-to-wear shows (which start tomorrow) that buying leather is bad: for them, the environment, and the cows.

Interestingly, the kerfuffle does not have to do, as one might assume, with the politics of the spot, or the graphic nature of the video (and how they may, or may not, kill the cows), but rather consumer access.
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A mere year after launch Moda Operandi, the etailer that allows crazed fashionistas to order directly from the runway directly after a show, is entering Stage Three of their growth plan: after carving out a niche in the US, and stealing all sorts of glamorous executives from established companies (Marie Claire, Bergdorf Goodman, Net a Porter), they are embarking on world domination with an international site, a new COO (another poach from Net-a-Porter), a European warehouse, translation services, and deals with Chinese, Japanese and Russian Vogues. Mothers, lock up your daughters.

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In case anyone harboured any doubts about Emmanuelle Alt’s French Vogue resembling Carine Roitfeld’s French Vogue In Any Way, Ms Alt has apparently decided to put them to rest by creating the following inexplicable video, starring herself, the French TV personality Mlle Agnes, and assorted models, all looking seriously dorky, to launch the mag’s new website.

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So I awoke today to the breathless news that it was…wait for it….OMG Givenchy (!) that made Madonna’s outfits for her Superbowl halftime show last night. Bet you were on the edge of your seat waiting for that one. I was. So what’s in it for them? Will it have any knock-on effect at all for the brand?

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Bernard Arnault, LVMH chieftain, yesterday became the first luxury CEO to dare predict 2012 was going to be as good for the seemingly recession-proof industry as 2011 and 2010. Way to put himself out there!

The occasion was the release of LVMH’s 2011 annual results. Specifically, Mr Arnault said he was “fairly confident” about growth in 2012, which may not seem like a wholehearted rave, but compared to what I’ve heard from every other luxe CEO qualifies as super-positive. Read more

Today Jacob Weisberg coined what I think should become a representative catch-phrase of the 2012 US election along the lines of James Carville’s “it’s the economy, stupid,” in 1992 and Ronald Reagan’s “it’s morning in America” in 1984. To wit: he noted that Mitt Romney suffers from “the affliction of excessive handsomeness.”
Who knew there was such a problem? Such is the reality, it seems, of 21st century, recession-ridden America.
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The amount of attention paid to the appointment of Dixon’s ceo, John Browett, as Apple’s new head of retail has been interesting. After all, how many times does the announcement of the guy running stores at even the biggest companies merit this many column inches? Put another way: I’ll give you a hundred bucks if you can tell me who runs retail for Louis Vuitton? Ferrari? Gucci? Nike? Tiffany? Actually, that was a joke, but you get the point.

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