Versace

The Chambre Syndicale, French fashion’s governing body, has just announced Versace is returning to the couture schedule eight years after leaving it due to cutbacks. Is this good news? Or rather, is it enough good news?
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So it all came true, and PPR did, indeed, buy Italian men’s wear luxury brand Brioni. So far, so rumoured. But what does it mean? Seems to me there are two main implications to the deal. Read more >>

Though in many ways the brands mentioned in the headline – Hermès and Donald Trump – are what one would think of (OK, I would think of) as polar opposites, the former being famous for its discrete elegance, the latter being famous for its in-your-face 24-carat bluster, they are nevertheless setting up house together in … the Philippines. Below is a rendering of their love nest.

Century Properties

The relationship was brokered by Robbie Antonio, managing director of Century Properties, and the man behind what is increasingly looking like a mini fashion-city in Manila: high-rise condos with public areas (lobbies, libraries, pools) and apartments decorated by Versace, Missoni (both Italian labels) and now Hermès. He already had a licence deal with Trump on the table to build Trump Tower Manila (the building is owned and operated by Century), which will become the most luxurious, expensive, property in the city, and thought, he said, it would be great to have “two very formidable brands involved in the most important single tower.” He approached Hermès, which had recently launched a furniture line, and the French brand agreed to create the building’s shared spaces. Read more >>

Designers – especially, it seems, Italian designers – are busily embracing all sorts of aesthetic product opportunities beyond the runway. Both Missoni and Versace have teamed up with Century Properties in Manila to create the interiors of new high-rise developments, and Fendi just completed a boat with Princess Yachts. We have trend, people.
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One of the more controversial, if obscure, practices in the fashion world is “sand-blasting”, the process by which sand is fired at denim at high speeds: pow, pow! While this can make the fabric look cool, it also releases silica dust which experts say can cause pulmonary disease. Good for the catwalk, not so good for the factory workers, as the Clean Clothes Campaign discovered, so last year it started asking brands, luxury and otherwise, to look at their production processes and do the right thing. Read more >>

According to the NY Post, Aerin Lauder, the current family standard bearer of the Lauder cosmetic empire (so much so that she actually was the face of the relaunch of her grandmother Estee’s favourite fragrance, Youth Dew), as well as an SVP, is Leaving the Company to Start her Own Brand. This is a big deal. Read more >>

The answer to the above question — what’s wrong with British fashion — is summed up for me in today’s announcement that Christopher Kane has won the 2011 BFC/Vogue Designer Fashion Fund award. Read more >>