Ledbury Research is releasing its latest Luxury Market Insights report, which includes a CEO Outlook study tomorrow, and guess what? Those chief execs aren’t totally convinced the Chinese consumer demand for luxury, which has been slowing, will zoom back, despite what they often say.
The official Parson’s statement about the rationale behind hiring John Galliano to teach a Masterclass, scheduled for sometime this spring, has landed! Here it is in full, followed by some student reactions.
He dipped a pinky back in the fashion world – now he’s adding big toe. After working behind-the-scenes at Oscar de la Renta’s atelier, John Galliano is coming out into the open: Simon Collins, Dean of Parsons, the New York fashion school, has confirmed that Mr Galliano, aka the disgraced former Dior designer, has been hired to teach an upcoming Masterclass at the school. It’s an interesting move, seems to me, on Parsons’ part – presumably part of its bid to become the pre-eminent NY Fashion school, over FIT and Pratt. Way to make news! But is a smart move?
This Monday is Earth Day, which for people like me means that for the past few weeks emails have been flooding in touting this new eco-friendly line and that new sustainability initiative; this new textile recycling opportunity and that new clean water commitment. Their arrival at this time each year has in recent times become a truth as reliable as death and taxes, and the fact that after hemlines go up, they come down.
As reliable is that, as the above starts happening, my own temperature starts to rise, and I begin muttering and banging the keyboard and otherwise acting highly irritated by fashion’s muddling of the issues. My pet peeve is lexicographical flabbiness (sustainable manufacturing, for example, being different from sustainable business, though you can have an entire conversation with someone about “sustainability” before it becomes clear you are talking about two separate things), but it’s also hard not to make snide comments about the fact that so many websites seem to equate Earth Day with the opportunity to create slideshows of models posing naked for Peta. I know it’s no worse than Mother’s day or Father’s day or Valentine’s day, but still. It seems like this cause, of all causes, should not be reduced to a marketing opportunity. Read more
Time magazine’s 100 Most Influential People in the World is out, and there are three fashion names on it: Michael Kors, Jenna Lyons (of J Crew), and Tadashi Yanai (of Uniqlo). Notice anything similar about them?
No, this is not about Michelle Obama’s Get Fit campaign. The issue of size – of one’s body, as measured by the clothes one wears – has always been a touchy matter, not because of national epidemics of obesity, but because of our global individual body dysmorphia. Fashion has been an enabler of this all, not in the way you might think – not because of skinny models, or the deification of youth, for example, though it is certainly a factor in both – but because of its collusion in a less-discussed but equally problematic issue: the total elasticity of size. For fashion, size has become a tool of perception and subconscious seduction – oooh, look, this brand thinks I am so slim! I love it! – as opposed to reality. Except now one company, Alvanon, wants to change all that. And I wonder: Do we really want to know the truth? Read more
Diego Della Valle has thrown yet another cook into the Schiaparelli mix: after announcing Farida Khelfa as the “face” of the brand and Vincent Darre as the decorator of the Maison, today he has revealed that Christian Lacroix will create a one-off couture collection, to be unveiled in July, that will be an “homage” to the late designer. That’s a lot of opinions and aesthetics under one roof. But there’s more (and there will be more)! Read more
I know most people aren’t thinking about this – they are thinking about hedge fund managers and how much they may, or may not, lose on their bets – but yesterdays’ dramatic drop in gold prices is going to have an interesting knock-on effect on jewellers and watch makers. Not because it will make their products, which have been creeping upwards over the last decade along with the price of their raw materials less expensive – but because it WON’T. It can’t. Here’s why.
Yesterday the Salone del Mobile, aka the Milan Furniture Fair closed, and with it Milano Moda design, the side event created by the Camera Nazionale (Milan’s governing fashion body) dedicated to “events and initiatives of the Houses of Fashion which present Home Design Collections and organize special events related to Design.” This area is growing. Why? Well, partly because of the psychology of shopping: (apologies to Thomas Harris): “How do we begin to covet Clarice?…We begin by coveting what we see every day.”
When it was announced earlier this week that Margaret Thatcher, Britain’s first female prime minister and the first female leader of a major western power, had died, the tweets and slideshows came fast and fulsome. Of course they did; she was a historic figure. And yet, for all the times that someone said, “She changed the world,” and referred to the Falklands war, and her war on unions, and the end of the cold war, there were as many others who referred to her clothes.
“Very sad to hear of death of Baroness Thatcher. Her memory will live long after the world has forgotten the grey suits of today’s politics,” tweeted Boris Johnson, mayor of London. Katherine Haddon, in an obituary for AFP, wrote: “Behind the bouffant hair, trademark handbag and schoolma’am voice was an uncompromising Conservative who regularly cut her male colleagues and opponents down to size with a sharp tongue and even sharper political brain.” Meanwhile, the slideshows went up almost immediately: “Margaret Thatcher’s style remembered” (HuffPost); British Vogue and Grazia UK did them too. Read more