The opening days of London Fashion Week smelled like teen sprit and looked like a whole lot of
girl power. Strapped in all black leather armor, helmets and epic floor-length gowns, designer Gareth Pugh’s warrior women marched down the runway and into battle. The uniform red painted across each model’s face set a very tribal tone that alluded to a distinctly female and historical kind of heroism.
The young and ever-poetic Simone Rocha impressed with her signature dark and romantic designs, presenting women as holy vessels of history. Rocha’s extensive line was marked by sculptural dresses of black velvet and Victorian prints and lace and whimsical floral visions of a mid- summers night dream, all delicately carrying the idea of the feminine muse.
Molly Goddard’s grungy prom inspired autumn/ winter line left many critics in a dream state, lullabied into an artsy high by her nostalgic palate and careful frills. The popular collaborative brand Sibling uplifted Brit punk legacy to grrrlish heights. The brand's new line toyed with tension between teen subcultural disguise and the devil-may-care air it yearns to present. Sibling’s 80’s bright colored mix of latex and exaggerated knits was a homage to all our favorite bad girls who strut their fluffy neon mohawks in a night club world where only attitude matters.
The late fashion professor Louise Wilson of the renowned Central Saint Martins and mentor to top Brit names like Christopher Kane, Roksanda Ilincic, and Simone Rocha, knew that true innovation does not come mildly. Burberry, Alexander McQueen and Vivienne Westwood are now as much British staples as biscuits with tea. To follow in Wilson’s brazen footsteps,
these new bold gems could very well be the next crown jewels of UK fashion.
You saw the gowns, but do you know the facts? At the Oscars, Lupita Nyong’o glowed like a modern Aphrodite in a
custom Calvin Klein halter neck gown adorned with 6,000 pearls. Tunisian designer Azzedine Alaïa made his first Oscar appearance via Lady Gaga, who sported not one, but three of his custom looks. Gaga announced her dedication to the designer over social media and divulged that her first red carpet gown took a Paris team of 25 people and 1600 hours of embroidery. Gaga’s unusual gloves were hand dyed and the orchids in her hair hand painted by Lorraine Schwartz, who also created the signer’s diamond earrings. And the award for most unique dress went to Naomi Watts who wore an graphic Armani Privé black and silver embellished gown that showed some skin with thin 90’s straps and a black bandeau.
This year’s Oscars has been deemed the ‘whitest’ awards show we’ve had since 1998. When the company Big Group released a photo montage last year of the dresses worn by every Best Actress Winner since 1929 , it
just about proved it. Missing from the fashion archive were actresses of color, who despite their wins, were not included because of the collection’s tight guidelines requiring many years of attendance. February is Black History Month. The legacies of black Americans, and their influence on fashion and design are being celebrated throughout communities and campuses, if not in Hollywood. Annual black history month fashion shows, often led by black student unions, were held at schools like Columbia University College of The Holy Cross, Pensacola State College and many more. Glo.com and The L.A Times complied inspiring photo lists of black style icons that includes the first African American super model Naomi Sims, Prince, Erykah Badu X, 70’s bombshell Pam Grier, Bille Holiday, Tina Turner, and of course, Beyonce.
Is L.A the new New York? Or is it Paris? Long cast as the beach bum sibling of serious fashion cities, L.A is definitely having its
fashion coming- of-age. Tom Ford, following suit after Louis Vuitton and Bernhard Wilhelm has christened this moment by hosting his fall 2015 show here in the city of angels and not London. Our city has always been home to the stars, and with the of recent influx of celebrities turned designers (Kayne) and their super famous entourages that line runway front rows, L.A is poised for a new era of fashion. Though Ford’s show was the same week as London Fashion Week and the Academy Awards, top models, A-listers and editors flew in to to catch the rose-petal doused parade of leather fringe , denim skirts and jackets patched with fur and bright velvet and of course, a sparkly array of evening gowns.
Beyond Hollywood and into studios and laboratories across the globe, there has been a lot of talk lately about tech-smart fabrics. Makiko Minagawa was featured by Metropolis magazine for not only her work with designer
Issey Miyake, but her mastery of speciality textiles in her own right. Minagawa, who was born to a family of kimono dyers and designers, creates with the hands of traditional craft and an eye to the cutting edge of contemporary. Inspired by the fine details of everyday life like Japanese lanterns and the fuzzy debris inside a vacuum cleaner, Minagawa’s designs often go through an old world series of spinners, weavers and traditional dying techniques. Her brand HaaT, which sounds like heart and means market place in Hindi, incorporates textile customs from from the around the world, especially India. For lovers of both tech and design, Minagawa’s ancient/ futuristic genius cannot go unseen.
Remember the days when you thought the man in the mouse suit was really Mickey Mouse? This weekend, such dreams come back to life; a private collector will be
auctioning Disneyland costumes worn by its park employees and performers. Collectors will big high for wearable and antique items such as uniforms from the Haunted Mansion, It’s a Small World and Autopia. Special vintage items of note are the 1955 Tomorrowland souvenir fabric, embroidered employee uniform patches and a plethora of tropical items that belonged to “The Enchanted Tiki Room.”
The opening days of London Fashion Week smelled like teen sprit and looked like a whole lot of girl power. Strapped in all black leather armor, helmets and epic floor-length...