Every girl with aspirations of high fashion and even higher heels has their sights set on Condé Nast, and why shouldn’t they? It’s the stuff of “The Devil Wears Prada” dreams, a promised land where Wintour rules as supreme overlord and the streets are paved with, well, pavé. In light of the complaints filed by former interns who speak of slave labor and the long-running rumors that the job isn’t all it’s cracked up to be (on the contrary, it will make you crack), it’s getting harder and harder to secure a seat on Vogue‘s Byline Express. The Condé Nast College of Fashion & Design may sound like a fever dream I had when I was 16, but come January, such a school will be brick-and-mortar reality in central London. It vows to “establish itself as an important starting point for those who want to be tomorrow’s stars of the fashion industry,” which sounds pretty ambitious to me. Keep reading »
Today in Things That Aren’t Cute: these uniforms Ralph Lauren designed for the U.S. Olympic Team. Blazers, berets, knee-length skirts — the company’s statement says the outfits aim to “embody the spirit of American athleticism and sportsmanship,” but I think they’re more “Phillips Exeter Academy, sailing, affected accents from a place that doesn’t exist, that kid you know named John Charles Johnson III, your mom’s Valium in the mirrored bathroom cabinet, and things that do not and will never genuinely define America as a whole unless, of course, you happen to be asking Ralph Lauren.” I grew up in Connecticut. I know this shit.
I’ve publicly voiced my lukewarm feelings on designer department store collaborations in the past, but this latest one may have just the right elements to make a convert out of a non-believer like me. As far as fast fashion goes, Target isn’t the first superstore that springs to mind, despite Missoni and Jason Wu to their name: H&M unforgettably landed a high-fashion trifecta of Lanvin, Karl Lagerfeld, and Versace (not to mention Stella McCartney and the impending Maison Martin Margiela), and Macy’s has stepped it up recently with cameos by Alberta Ferretti and Doo.Ri. Make no mistake, Target took note, and though only time will tell for certain, my instincts say there’s a good chance that they’ve nailed the formula with their fresh new take on luxury-meets-affordability. Keep reading »
Nobody ever told us who designed Cinderella’s glass slipper, but if a contemporary version of the tale were to take place, Christian Louboutin would be a shoe-in for the job — so it’s only natural that Disney chose the French designer, known for his luxurious red-soled footwear, to create a modern-day take on the fateful shoe. Unveiled yesterday in Paris, the results are infinitely more practical than a heel constructed of, uh, glass: the shoe is actually made of a fine layer of lace and covered in a smattering of Swarovski crystals, including crystal butterflies. I totally would have preferred to see Louboutin create a pair of actual glass slippers, even if it meant they were unwearable. They would look just as pretty on display as they would on the foot of a future princess. Or, you know, a stripper named Princess. Or Shauna Sand. [Fashionista]
While there are many things definitively Chanel that I don’t exactly promote — tweed, for instance — I almost always agree with Peter Philips. The global creative director of Chanel Makeup since 2008, Philips is responsible for crazy-coveted Le Vernis nail lacquer shades like Particulière, which sparked the frenzy for taupe-grey (or “greige”) polish back in 2010, and the birth of the Rouge Coco lipstick range. He’s a visionary of sorts (see: bedazzled brows on the runway last season) who can put an elegant, luxurious spin on pretty much anything (see also: temporary tattoos). But just in case you need a little more proof that Philips is, indeed, a bonafide beauty genius, his new short film will make up your mind once and for all. “Miroir, Miroir,” inspired by the Paris-Bombay show Karl Lagerfeld sent down the promenade in December, serves to introduce five new shades of Chanel lipstick in the most gorgeously hallucinatory way possible. Philips said of the video, “The concept complemented the shades and the hypnotizing, psychedelic aspect fit well with the Indian theme.” Are you tripping yet? [BellaSugar]
I don’t really “do” white eyeliner. As far as its eye-brightening properties go, I find a nude pencil to look infinitely more natural and actually open up the eye, rather than just looking like, well, you’re wearing white liner! To be honest, I’m a little bit afraid of using white, and I’m not entirely sure of its place in the makeup spectrum. Should it be worn on the inner rims? The inner corners? The lower lash line? How about on the top, like you would wear a black or colored liner? So many questions.
Julie and I are generally on the same page when it comes to beauty trends, but the white liner craze is one that we disagree on. She thinks it’s cool and wearable; I think it should be, for the most part, left to the pros, lest things get really tacky really fast. This trend may be better suited to the darker-skinned among us, whose complexions are flattered by pale tones, whereas for me it’s like putting white on white on white. Would you be interested in giving this runway look a whirl, or are you fine sticking with tried-and-true blacks and browns? [Beauty Bender]
Expect to see spots aplenty in the very near future — Japanese artist Yayoi Kusama will be the subject of several pop-up shops around the globe this summer, but the avant-garde visionary won’t just be selling prints. Kusama has teamed up with none other than Louis Vuitton to create a capsule collection of clothing and accessories that are sure to captivate the fashion flock… if they haven’t already, that is.
Gisele Bundchen may have been the first to wear it on the cover of this month’s Vogue Brazil, but it was Kirsten Dunst who debuted a dress from the line last night at the opening of the new Vuitton boutique in Paris. I like the silhouette of the maxi, and the polka dots, but the overall effect is a little more hoedown-ready than anticipated. Then again, I wasn’t exactly a fan of Gisele’s look either, so perhaps this speckled collection just isn’t for me. Do you love Kirsten’s quirky gown, or do you think it’s best left to those also wearing cowboy boots?
There’s a good chance that I am turning into a weird, babbling robot only capable of spewing out meaningless phrases like “Choupette,” “pretty cat,” and simply “meow.” For example, when I learned this morning of the Chanel cat’s big break, the noise I made could only be likened to a battle cry of sorts. That’s right: famous beauty Choupette Lagerfeld will make her modeling debut in a spread for V magazine (to which her designer dad is a frequent contributor) alongside sexy French super Laetitia Casta. With her stunning Siamese features, natural posing skills, and expertise with an iPad, Choupette really is the total package. Beauty and brains — she’s so dynamic! I just hope she doesn’t get too thin. [Fashionista]
If you thought Alexander McQueen’s exquisite designs were fantastical enough without being constructed entirely out of candy, now is the time to reevaluate: TWELV magazine, whatever that is, will certainly debut with a bang thanks to this saccharine take on McQueen’s ethereal winged creation (the original at left). Hissa Igarashi and Sayuri Marakumi used no less than 50,000 gummy bears to build this 220-pound dress, which required three assistants just to move around the studio, with steel wire and vinyl as support. I wonder how many other bears were originally involved but vanished mysteriously during the process? I, for one, could never be trusted with 50,000 of those things. However, I’m brand-loyal to Haribo, so that’s kind of a prerequisite. [Styleite]
When our favorite designers of intangibly expensive high fashion announce their plans to expand into more reasonable diffusion lines, we can’t help but go a little weak in the knees at the prospect… then we regain composure and remember not to get our hopes up. A lower-priced designer collection is awesome in theory, but in fruition they usually leave us cold — more often than not they end up being a weak, dissatisfying echo of the designs we love on the stars and on the runway. But it’s not all bad (really)! When they’re good, they’re really good, even if they aren’t exactly our definition of “cheap.” Check out our picks for the best and worst of affordable designer fashion fare, and let us know your favorites in the comments.