Oprah Winfrey’s Sabyasachi Connection, As Revealed By The Designer

Oprah Winfrey's Sabyasachi Connection, As Revealed By The Designer

On Monday, ace fashion designer Sabyasachi Mukherjee revealed that actress-talk show host Oprah Winfrey recently wore a custom-made black sari designed by him on the cover of Elle India’s December 2018 edition. Oprah has featured on the magazine’s 22nd anniversary cover. She complemented the sari with 29.5 carats Zambian emerald and diamond earrings from Sabyasachi’s heritage jewellery collection. A picture of the cover was shared by Sabyasachi on his Instagram timeline, who also revealed details about his meeting with Oprah Winfrey on her first trip to India. She had visited India in 2012 and while attending a dinner hosted by the royal family in Jaipur, Oprah Winfrey had also worn a sari designed by Sabyasachi.

“Nothing prepares you for meeting Oprah in real life. On her maiden trip to India, Oprah attended a dinner hosted by the royal family in Jaipur and I had the good fortune to dress her in a saree for it. We spent some time discussing India and spirituality, as well as Indian art and handicrafts,” Sabyasachi wrote.

On her way to the Jaipur Literary Festival, Oprah Winfrey had visited Sabyasachi’s new store in Mumbai too. “The opening of my store in Kala Ghoda came up in conversation and Oprah promised to swing by in the morning if she got time off from her busy schedule. I thought she was being polite. Oprah isn’t just one of the world’s most influential personalities. She’s larger than life, but also as real as it gets!” Sabyasachi added.

[“source=ndtv”]

Fad Or Fixture: How Relevant Are CGI Models To The Fashion And Beauty Industries?

Balmain campaign

Balmain campaignBalmain

Lil Miquela has 1.5 million followers on Instagram. She’s 19-years-old, based in Los Angeles, a model and a musician.

The thing is, she’s also not real.

This computer-generated supermodel is the digital brainchild of an LA-based agency called Brud, which has recently received around $6 million in its latest funding round, led by Silicon Valley investors including Sequoia Capital.

That comes off the back of the fact that Lil Miquela, otherwise known as their resident “influencer”, make-believe though she is, is receiving real work.

Out front hiring her and various others that have been created, is the fashion industry, with brands from Balmain, Dior, Prada and Louis Vuitton having all jumped on the virtual avatar train.

Most recently, Lil Miquela featured in UGG’s 40th anniversary campaign, blending in seamlessly alongside two real-life influencers as though she were a natural part of the cast. For the unsuspecting onlooker, it’s not immediately clear she’s not.

The question is, do CGI models hold true value for such businesses, or is this just a fad? On the latest episode of the Innovators podcast by TheCurrent, I debate the topic with tech expert, Liz Bacelar

[“source=forbes]

The Moscow Seven: Meet Russia’s Future Fashion Stars

In times of strife and struggle, Russia has always placed its biggest trust in human resources. “We’re rich in minerals and minds,” goes an old saying. While the population of the world’s largest (by territory) nation has steadily declined since independence in 1991, recent years have marked a potential reversal of fortunes with ‎0.05% growth recorded in 2017. The government aims to prevent the dreaded brain drain, but it’s the creative industries that often are the most flexible to adapt to new challenges.

One of Russia’s leading fashion designers Igor Gulyaev closed MBFW Russia with a blockbuster show inclusive of his Insta-famous cat!Courtesy of MBFW Russia

Mercedes Benz Fashion Week Russia just took place in Moscow in October 13-17. Its Fashion Futurum program is an example of successful strategic support for emergent talent within a specific economic sector. Last year, the organizing committee co-launched FashionNet as part of the National Technology Initiative to boost domestic apparel market coverage up to 70% by 2035. While all eyes were on the fashion capital’s brightest stars Yasya Minochkina, Pirosmani, Artem Shumov, Alena Akhmadullina and Igor Gulyaev, we decided to spend time with the participants of the Fashion Futurum Accelerator, a program that helps promising designers set up a business from scratch. These future stars spend the past couple months in an intense mentorship program in Moscow working alongside established brand managers, buyers, investors and consultants to perfect their vision and set up sustainable production and retail channels. In between the shows, I asked them what participation in the Accelerator meant for them as they prepared to develop and present their full debut collections next season as part of the platform.

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Meghan Markle Steals The Royal Show With Her Glamorous Maternity Fashion Style

Meghan and Harry visit Courtnay Creative for an event celebrating the city’s thriving arts scene in Wellington, New Zealand         Photo: Samir Hussein/WireImage

Pregnant and radiant, with her winning smile, intelligence and down-to-earth warmth, Meghan Markle has been unquestionably the star of the first official extended overseas royal trip she and Prince Harry are taking for 16 days to cities in Australia, Fiji, Tonga and New Zealand.

According to the local press, she has taken the region by storm and the talk is about ‘Meghan Mania,”  her popularity among the public and in particular the young women and children with whom they come in contact, her influence on the fashion industry that follows her every sartorial choice and the almost immediate effect her taste has on the fashion houses she chooses to wear.

Meghan visits Courtnay Creative for an event celebrating the city’s thriving arts scene in Wellington. Considered one of the best looks of the tour, this white tuxedo dress with adjustable buttons by New Zealand-based designer Maggie Marilyn was custom-made for Meghan. The blue shoes are Manolo Blahnik    Photo: Samir Hussein/WireImage

Glowing naturally as pregnant women do during their second trimester, Meghan has looked stunning in each of the many outfits she brought for the trip,  from a mini tuxedo white dress she chose for a cultural event that has been praised to the moon by fashionistas, to the spectacular Oscar de la Renta princess gown she wore for the Australian Geographical Society Awards and all the formal and informal stylish looks in between, including beach wear, city chic, sporty gear, ballgowns and environmentally-responsible  jeans.

“Australian designers get a taste of the ‘Meghan Effect’ after the Duchess of Sussex championed a spate of local names during the royal tour,” WWD wrote in an article about “Meghan Mania” sweeping Australia, and the fact that she included a number of local labels in her tour wardrobe, “alongside international brands as Brandon Maxwell, Jason Wu, Roksanda Ilincic, Stuart Weitzman, Manolo Blahnik, Gucci and Birks.”

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How Technology Could Revolutionize Online Shopping In The Near Future

GettyGetty

How often are you satisfied with the size and fit of your online purchases? In the past few years, return rates for clothing purchased online have reached close to 40%. In a poll reported on by BBC, 56% of respondents who purchased clothing online six months prior to May 2016 said they had returned at least one item. Apparel Magazine reports that 70% of all online clothing returns are caused by problems with fit.

In the U.S., online apparel sales accounted for more than 25% of overall apparel sales in 2017. But why do people shop online even though they have to return clothing that does not fit? How many more people would shop online if they could be certain about fit and size?

As retailers play with free delivery and free returns even if it hurts their business, the cost of returns continues to grow along with the rate of returns. Currently, each order sent back costs retailers from $3 to $12.

The number of returned goods also has a negative impact on the environment. The destruction of unsold and returned garments, especially in the luxury sector, has caused people to ask questions. The fashion industry is known as one of the largest polluters in the world.

Based on my research into the struggles of today’s retailers and what I’ve learned founding a company that develops 3D body modeling technology, I believe that solving fit problems could result in growth in the number of online shoppers, reduced returns and less waste. Thankfully, I’ve been observing innovations coming out of the technology sector that could help make significant progress in solving this industrywide issue.

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Victoria’s Secret Replaces CEO Amid The ThirdLove New York Times Ad

Heidi Zak’s open letter in The New York Times to Victoria’s Secret CMO, Ed Razek.Instagram: @thirdlove

Victoria’s Secret has replaced CEO, Jan Singer, with John Mehas, days after the ThirdLove open letter in the Times in response to Victoria’s Secret CMO, Ed Razek’s, degrading remarks in his recent Vogue interview. Although the ThirdLove letter may have not been the sole reason for change in leadership, it has shed light on the company culture that needs to evolve to better communicate to the modern consumer. With Victoria’s Secret’s sales declining rapidly, the last thing the brand needed was an open letter in the Times criticizing their outdated views on women.

Chief Marketing Officer Ed Razek and Victoria’s Secret models Candice Swanepoel and Adriana Lima during a press conference. (Photo by John Phillips/Invision/AP)John Phillips/Invision/AP

Heidi Zak, CEO of ThirdLove, felt it was her mission to explain why the brand’s male-fantasy marketing tactics, un-inclusive sizing and discriminatory culture has prompted antithesis brands, such as ThirdLove, to grow in the marketplace.

The letter was addressed to Victoria’s Secret on Ed Razek’s appalling commentary and approach towards marketing to women. “You market to men and sell a male fantasy to women. But at ThirdLove, we think beyond, as you said, a “42-minute entertainment special.” Your show may be a “fantasy” but we live in reality. Our reality is that women wear bras in real life as they go to work, breastfeed their children, play sports, care for ailing parents, and serve their country,” said Zak.

Is the disconnect that Victoria’s Secret has between their “fantasy world” and the reality of their consumer to blame for their decline? Zak’s explains how ThirdLove fills in the disconnect between fantasy and reality, “I founded ThirdLove five years ago because it was time to create a better option. ThirdLove is the antithesis of Victoria’s Secret. We believe the future is building a brand for every woman, regardless of her shape, size, age, ethnicity, gender identity, or sexual orientation. This shouldn’t be seen as groundbreaking, it should be the norm.”

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The Making of Georgian Fashion Moment: Tbilisi Fashion Week

From those tiny sunglasses seen on just about every celebrity to cover-rocking distressed denim outfits, Georgian designers have been setting major micro-trends lately. How big is Georgian fashion right now? Well, Tbilisi features two fashion weeks to accommodate its growing number of designers wanting to present to the international visiting crowds of press, buyers, and influencers. We start our series on emerging Georgian fashion industry with the 18th edition of Tbilisi Fashion Week.

Tako Chkheidze (center) with Georgian actresses Irinka Kavsadze (the granddaughter of the Bela Mirianshvili) and Gogola Kalandadze.Courtesy of Tbilisi Fashion Week

Dedicated to the beloved 1960’s Georgian actress Bela Mirianashvili, the grand opening took place high above the city at the spectacular terraces of the Funicular restaurant. Guests were greeted by models in modest monochrome dresses evoking nostalgia for a bygone era of cinema and a slower pace of pre-digital life. Fashion week founder Tako Chkheidze spoke eloquently about art and fashion not as perpetually transient frenetic trends, but as cultural forces leaving a lasting influence. By choosing to dedicate the events to a style icon from a period of Soviet censorship and scarcity, organizers highlighted the creative spirit that has always prevailed in Georgia! Such an intro was perfect for the week’s agenda focused on eco fashion.

Éthéré Accessoire presentation at the GhvinisUbani art spaceCourtesy of Tbilisi Fashion Week

The spring-summer 2019 collections were presented at the Ghvinis Ubani, a former Wine Factory turned multifunctional arts space, with several noteworthy locations such as the Museum of Modern Art and Chaikana Bazar serving as additional stages. In place of the conventional catwalk the runway was converted in an attractive pasture of synthetic grass to highlight the theme: “We must take care of nature.” Designer Lasha Jokhadze opened the show with an unusual theatrical presentation of his sophisticated all-black evening wear collection. His models were arranged lying down and as the music started, they helped each other rise to their feet and walked around hand-in-hand.

Lasha Jokhadze S/S 2019Courtesy of Tbilisi Fashion Week

Designer Tatia Korsava was a winner of the Tbilisi Fashion Week talent competition last season with a menswear debut inspired by medieval arts and neo-expressionist motifs in paintings by Merab Abramishvili. She made a strong highly-anticipated comeback with a post-apocalyptic collection reflecting modern ecological threats. Models wore protective trench coats, rubber suits, military jumpsuits and gas masks. Korsava playfully challenged gender norms, pairing ragged menswear with feminine glossy pleather waist-cinching bodices, bird-print silk blouses, and see-through mesh shirts.

Tatia Korsava S/S 2019Courtesy of Tbilisi Fashion Week

Another gender-bending twist on proportions and silhouette came from the Russian brand 1377. It re-conceptualized menswear staples with inclusion of mixed textures and elements typically reserved for women or children: flower appliques, flowing capes, and lurex tights. Even the lapti¸ the quintessential Russian peasant tree bark shoes, felt authentic in this well-thought-out presentation.

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The Curious Emptiness Of Renting Everyday Fashion

The 20th annual Initiatives in Arts and Culture (IAC) Conference was held Thursday and Friday at the Museum of The City of New York. Founded by Lisa Koenigsberg, IAC’s primary activities are conferences, publications, and exhibitions that take an interdisciplinary approach, considering issues related to fabrication, connoisseurship, cultural patrimony, cultural preservation, and the future of culture.

This year the conference featured a “think tank” gathering of leaders, associations, and trendsetter, exploring the fluidity and changes affecting the fashion industry, including how disruptors bring innovation and revolution to the design story.

2018 IAC ConferenceCourtesy IAC Conference

Speakers included fashion designers Jason Wu, Cynthia Rowley and Rebecca Minkoff, bestselling author and Columbia professor Caroline Weber, jewelry designer Prince Dimitri of Yugoslavia, and fashion marketing guru Ivan Bart.

Koenigsberg spoke about the conference, its goals, and the changing environment in fashion and retail.

How has the conference changed or evolved over the past 20 years?

The conference has retained its focus on the history of fashion and related expressions, exploring major houses and designers.  At the same time, IAC and the conference have increasingly been concerned with what is happening now: adornment jewels and accessories, and issues pertaining to the relationship of fashion to larger social issues, ranging from sustainability, to inclusion, to social media and marketing, as well as the power of the image.

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How can the conference be helpful in dealing with a rapidly changing fashion environment?

Every year we consider pressing issues of the moment, and our consideration is enhanced because of IAC’s relationships with industry leaders, academics, professional associations, designers, and today’s thought leaders. We commit to bringing pressing issues ranging from design trends to body types; various price points, each of which has its demands; and new approaches to balancing societal imperatives with fashion, and all that is involved in creating great design.

How can new designers establish themselves without using the traditional route of brick & mortar stores?  Will it even be possible?

Yes, we can see this in front of us every day. La Ligne, established by three women, is a direct to consumer brand.  Through e-commerce, trunk shows and other appearances, La Ligne makes use of relationship-based endorsements from high profile loyal followers called La Bande.  Much current discussion addresses the power of Instagram, and whether it has eclipsed print publications.  Additionally, pop-up shops allow for episodic but traditional encounters with the consumer, ranging from trendy to high-end.

This upcoming Monday, November 12th,  IAC will be hosting its inaugural diamond and gemstone conference at the William and Anita Newman Conference Center of Baruch College, at 151 East 25th Street. Day of Light seeks to explore a range of topics, from branding initiatives in the industry, to color trends affecting design, to the importance of storytelling in customer engagement and experience. By exploring the bread and butter bridal market alongside bespoke, as well as issues impacting the colored gemstone industry, Monday’s program is set to immerse participants in thoughtful and engaging discussions around hot topics, better practices, and new approaches for customer connection.

[“source=forbes]

A Fashion Photographer Shows How To Shoot Nudes In The MeToo Era

NEW YORK, NY – Sadie Newman, Megan Williams, Alexina Graham, and Russell James prepare backstage for the 2018 Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show on November 8, 2018. (Photo by Taylor Hill/FilmMagic)Getty

In 2014, fashion photographer Russell James released Angels, a 304-page book of black-and-white nude or intimate photos of top models he met through his work with Victoria’s Secret, including stars like Lily Aldridge, Gisele Bündchen, and Adriana Lima. (The book takes its name from the Victoria’s Secret Angels.) This was, James recently told me, largely an archival project. After a few years working as a photographer in other countries, James, originally from Australia, came to America as a generalist photographer in 1996, struck it big with iconic covers for magazines like Sports Illustrated, and has been shooting for Victoria’s Secret since 1997. So he was sitting on a massive photo trove. But it went over extremely well—especially with models, some of whom apparently told James they were disappointed that he didn’t include any photos of them. So on December 1st, James will release a 448-page collectors edition of Angels featuring new models.

But the cultural climate in 2018, as others have noted, is drastically different than that of 2014. Fashion and nude photography have, like so many other industries, come into the spotlight for a critical reevaluation. Longstanding conversations about whether these art forms empower or objectify their female subjects, contributing to a toxic and patriarchic world, have gained newfound traction. And since the start of the year, major stories have come to light of famous photographers and other art and fashion bigwigs taking abusive advantage of models. “There is certainly not no risk in doing something like this” in the current cultural moment, admits James. So I recently asked him how his awareness of the cultural climate affected the way he produced and positioned this project.

James, it is worth noting, has a solid reputation among his subjects and collaborators. Some of this may stem from the fact that he has never considered himself a “nude photographer,” doing naked or near-naked shoots for their own sake or for male eyes. He is equally fond of landscapes, for instance, and seems to see nude photography through a similar lens. (“I do love the light,” he says, “the form, the shape of the nude.”) Much more of it stems from his personal commitment to only shooting subjects with whom he can build rapport and trust. He has long avoided crude direction and overt sexualization, instead giving models a considerable amount of agency in their own portrayal.

That is clear in most of his work, but should be especially so in this new edition of Angels. Unlike his first archival image-based edition, since 2014 James has been working with each of the 35 new models in this version as full-fledged collaborators. Each of them took as much power as they wanted over the shoot itself, the photo selections, and the editing process. “I was able to really deliberately say, ‘okay, I want to do this,’” says James. “‘We can either work off my ideas or your ideas or a combination of ideas. We can look at the film and edit together.’” That seems to be part of why the book took four years to put together—a lot of scheduling effort with busy folks.

[“source=forbes]

Ariana Grande Is The New ‘Mean Girl’ In Teaser For ‘thank u, next’ Video

Ariana Grande performs at Wango Tango at Banc of California Stadium on Saturday, June 2, 2018, in Los Angeles. (Photo by Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP)Invision

To say that the entertainment industry has gotten reboot- and sequel-crazy in the last few years is a comical understatement. SabrinaThe Teenage Witch is haunting our screens again, and Tyra Banks is coming out of her box in less than a week in the premiere of Life-Size 2. Mean Girls received a much-maligned sequel treatment eight years ago (and a polarizing Broadway musical just this year), so fans of the original movie have every right to feel protective against any new adaptations. Following the hype surrounding the franchise that the Broadway production aroused earlier this year, fans are once again returning to North Shore High School—and learning more about Regina George’s brunette foil: a cheerleader named Ariana Grande.

In a trailer released for her upcoming “thank u, next” video, Grande actually never once makes an appearance. Instead, the trailer is a reimagining of Mean Girls‘s beloved “How do I begin to explain Regina George?” sequence, featuring characters old and new making Grande’s mysterious character that much more interesting.

Fans of the movie will instantly recognize Jonathan Bennett reprising his role as Aaron Samuels (still with his hair sexily pushed back), as well as Stephanie Drummond—this time as someone breaks off her engagement after Ariana did the same thing, and not someone who overjoyed in being punched by Regina George. A few other North Shore students—played by welcome guest stars like singer Troye Sivan and YouTube personality Colleen Ballinger—recount their own rumors they’ve heard about the regal Grande: that her snoring played backwards sounds like Fantasia, that people punch themselves because she said so, and that she’s dating a girl named “Aubrey” (a nod to the song’s often-misheard lyric “Her name is Ari”). It’s an endearing tribute to a treasured movie, and is reportedly only one of the cherished female-led comedies that the video will pay homage to.

Grande has yet to announce when the visual will be released, but could arrive before the week is out. One thing’s for sure: when the inevitable Legally Blonde reboot eventually comes around, the casting director should consider her their first choice for Jennifer Coolidge’s iconic role.

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