FASHION/BEAUTY

NATALIA ALLEN EMERGES FROM LAB WITH FOREVER
PSST! psst! Check out that dress. Yes, that one up there. The black. Form-fitting. Simple lines. Ready for anything you got. It was designed by Natalia Allen. Don’t know her? No worries, you will soon enough. That is, you will know her work. The little black affair is from NA's SS2013 Forever Collection. It’s intentionally a capsule line for several reasons to be explained later. Oh, and it was designed by a robot. Yes, a robot. Read more: http://www.vevlynspen.com/2013/05/natalia-allen-emerges-from-lab-with.html


BETSEY JOHNSON SS13 DRESS COLLECTION. HA! SERIOUSLY.
FOR the doubters, introducing the Betsey Johnson SS13 Dress Collection. Yes, dresses – and not a cheerleader costume in the mix. Actual. Dresses. BJ is actually capable of designing clothes that real women – not extremely young females or drag queens – will wear. Recall that she likes to have fun, and that was what she was doing all of those seasons when it seemed to many that she was not designing at all. When the rap on the former dancer and cartwheel specialist was that she was just feeding her ever-expanding branding machine. No one is denying any merit in such observations. Her eponymous brick&mortars may be no more, but BJ is still holding it down online and in Bloomingdale’s, Nordstrom and Macy’s amongst other places. In fact, a few weeks back, the Macy’s windows at New York’s Herald Square flagship store went all-out BJ. Read more: http://www.vevlynspen.com/2013/04/betsey-johnson-ss13-dress-collection-ha.html


ERIC BENET & THE BROOKLYN CIRCUS HAVE A CONNECTION
A meeting of the minds happened recently when singer Eric Benet stopped by the destination shop, The Brooklyn Circus/BKc, to chat up some stylish sorts about his personal style and style in general. Like with just about everything, it’s a process (See video above that also features the single, “News for You,” from EB’s latest album, “THE ONE.) In the video, EB explains to his sartorially situated audience that he was always inclined toward the classic mode of dressing. His threads were not tied to trends, rather to his own personal tastes. The Brooklyn Circus/BKc, which since 2006 has extended its reach from a certain God-blessed borough of New York City to Chicago and San Francisco, fashions itself as an intersection where style and character meet, an urban oasis where style flourishes. A natural element for such a gathering of men. Read more: http://www.vevlynspen.com/2013/04/eric-benet-brooklyn-circus-have.html


SAVING WORLD AND, SHOWING FASHION SENSE AT ECOCOUTURE
“… OUR goal is not to offer ‘green’ clothing without sacrificing fashion but rather to advance fashion without sacrificing our world.” This is the core value of Los Angeles-based EcoCouture, a new women’s contemporary brand. It believes that fashion-forwardness and social responsibility can and should co-exist. Take polyester, for instance. It can be created from recycled plastic bottles or even recycled polyester fabric. It doesn’t have to be made from environmentally unfriendly petroleum. Just one pearl of wisdom that EcoCouture drops for all who have ears (and presumably consciousness about the fashion they buy and wear). Judging by the Skinny-leg Black Leather Pants made out of recycled leather, EcoCouture, founded just last year by Karundi Serumaga, has produced some mean, green threads. Likewise for the Interchangeable Plunging V-neck Dress. Read more: http://www.vevlynspen.com/2012/11/saving-world-and-showing-fashion-sense.html


TRYING TO DO A WORLD OF GOOD FOR THE LITTLE ONES AT B FROG
THE pink-orange multi scarf can be a source of brightness doing the bleakest of winter days when the air is heavy with cold and the landscape is covered with snow. Or it can serve as a bright counterpoint to an all-black ensemble. The scarf, from the months-old company of Christian and Steven Cremer called B Frog, is handmade in the highlands of Guatemala from 100 percent soft cotton. The threads from which it is formed have many colors within each one. That explains the many colors of the scarves and the unique pattern of each. Mayans believe that the patterns are a sort of good luck charm, protecting the wearer from harm and/or guaranteeing wealth and procreation. Woven in a centuries-old Mayan method called Jaspe, the pink-multi scarf and the other three in a capsule collection that includes polo-style shirts are designed to attract attention to themselves and to a really good cause. Read more: http://www.vevlynspen.com/2012/11/trying-to-do-world-of-good-for-little.html


JAKARTA FASHION WEEK 2013 HAS EYE ON ... WORLD
WITH a theme of “Indonesia Today, The World Tomorrow,” Jakarta Fashion Week 2013 jumped off today at 8 p.m., Jakarta time (8 a.m. in New York) with shows from top Indonesian designer Sebastian Gunawan and Lie Sang Bong. South Korean-born, Paris-based LSB closed out Paris and showed in New York as part of the group show “Concept Korea.” For Spring 2013, the designer is inspired by butterflies. (See video above from Paris show.) Beginning its fifth year, Jakarta Fashion Week 2013 bills itself as Southeast Asia’s most influential fashion event. It is a platform for the Indonesian fashion industry to introduce itself to the global market. Over the next six days – through Friday, 9 Nov. – numerous fashion shows and events will be staged with the intent of doing just that. This being fashion, it attracts exhibitors from far and wide, both familiar and not-so familiar. Read more: http://www.vevlynspen.com/2012/11/jakarta-fashion-week-2013-has-eye-on.html


PRINTS & POP ART, DOTS & DIAMONDS HAVE LEGS COVERED
WANT that black dress to make a bolder statement? Yes? Then add a scarf, preferably one in a bright color. For evening, a broach with some sparkle will do the trick. Everyone knows that one of the best ways to update or spruce up a wardrobe, whether one is on a budget or not, is by accessorizing.The aforementioned options are tried-and-true and still very much in play. Another increasingly fun, funky and fanciful way to bedazzle the wardrobe, though, is with leggings, pantyhose, stockings, tights and over-the-knees. Legwear. Fall 2012 brings it. Only interested in the basic, black affair? Hanes will be very happy to oblige with its new patent-pending opaque Silk Reflections Blackout Convert-A-Tights. The switch is made possible by a small pocket that accommodates the toes for tights or folds neatly at the ankle for leggings. There's a whole lot going on elsewhere in legwear. Read more: http://www.vevlynspen.com/2012/11/prints-vents-dots-diamonds-have-legs.html


TRICK OR TREAT!: FALL WICKED SALE FROM NICHOLAS K
IT’S that time of year. Just about everybody is feeling just a little wicked, including the good people at Nicholas K. To that end, the label offers the Fall WICKED Sale. No tricks. The deal is pretty straightforward: Everything – every stitch – for Fall 2012 is 15 percent off. This season, designer Nicholas Kunz was inspired by the West of the United States, whether it be the characters of the Wild West or artist types that form the mosaic of the Southwest. This vision is most overtly clear in the fringe, cowboy hats and Aztec-like prints. At moments it seems, NK is also channeling the flapper era through a few dresses, in particular. (See video above of Fall 2012 collection shown during Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week at New York in February.) Note to the uninitiated, Nicholas K works with layers for both women and men, but no one should feel intimidated by the tableau. Read more: http://www.vevlynspen.com/2012/10/trick-or-treat-fall-wicked-sale-from.html


WALKING FAR MORE THAN A MILE IN SENDRA BOOTS
GOODYEAR Sewing is a double-enforced sewing method that ensures that shank and sole remained joined. Separation is not an option. Goodyear Sewing is but one of 250 steps required to make one pair of Sendras. This very detailed process translates into comfortable boots that are going to be around for a long time – possibly as long as nearly a century like Sendra Boots, the Spanish company that produces the fanciful footwear. Sendra boots are the brainchild of a leather tanner’s son who was enamored of the cowboy boots he’d seen during time spent in the United States. On his return to Almansa, Andrés Sendra opened shop, selling cowboy boots and riding boots. Sendra boots are 92% handcrafted. This explains in huge part the aforementioned 250 steps. Read more: http://www.vevlynspen.com/2012/10/these-boots-are-made-for-walking-many.html


JAI COLLECTION: FROCKS W/SOMETIMES NUMEROUS POSSIBILITIES
Many women want their clothing to make the bacon, fry it up in the pan, serve it on the plate, and do the dishes afterward. In simpler words, they demand high-quality, stylish garments that can be worn in more ways than one. With varying degrees of success, the market has been meeting those demands with reversible and convertible clothing. Another success story is that of designer Jia Li who has made reversible/convertible her stock in trade since her debut Jai Collection in Fall 2010. For Fall 2012, she introduces a line that pays homage to actresses of Hollywood’s Golden Age. Think of Joan Crawford in “Mildred Pierce” once she is rolling in dough and her ungrateful daughter is spinning increasingly out of control. Conjure up the dream that is Bette Davis in “Now, Voyager” after her weight loss and after she removes herself from under her mother’s thumb. Read more: http://www.vevlynspen.com/2012/10/jai-collection-frocks-wsometimes.html


STYLE AND FLAIR DRIVE EVER-FUNCTIONAL PORSCHE DESIGN
FOR Fall 2012, the theme at Porsche Design is iconic style meets industrial flair. That translates into superior workmanship and high-quality materials. One does not expect anything less from a company and brand that was established by the grandson of the creator of the legendary Porsche 911. The centerpiece of the Fall 2012 collection of clothing and accessories is the Hydro Tec leather jacket. It is constructed from nappa leather and laminated with water and wind-resistant materials. Welded seams waterproofs it in any kind of weather. Read more: http://www.vevlynspen.com/2012/10/style-and-flair-drive-ever-functional.html


LOVE STORY AT CENTER OF EDWING D'ANGELO'S 'BEAUTY ATTACK'
BILLED as designer Edwing D’Angelo's “first cinematic release,” “Beauty Attack” is a short film chronicling his Fall 2012 collection. A brief meditation on the lifestyle of those who wear the designs of the Columbian-born, Harlem-based creator, “Beauty Attack” is described as a love story that takes place in New York City. Cryptic! The good guys are the clothing and the attitude. No mention of the bad guy(s). Could he/it/they be the designer’s mood at the time he conceived the collection at the end of 2011? Watch and possibly learn. Also challenge the mind to ascertain the direction of the brand – another clue embedded in Fall 2012. Read more: http://www.vevlynspen.com/2012/10/love-story-at-center-of-edwing-dangelos.html


EILEEN FISHER, TOPSHOP EXPLOIT SOCIAL MEDIA IN BIZLIKE FASHION
WHAT do Eileen Fisher’s Obmre Shaped Cardigan w/pin and TopShop’s Printed Panel Dress have to do with Facebook, Twitter and YouTube? And what of Bally's whole lifestyle? Quite a bit, actually. Though Social Media is still so very new, it has become an invaluable communication tool – especially in business. And ever increasingly in the business of fashion as illustrated by the trio cited above. Continuing its mission to empower women and girls, Eileen Fisher has conceived the “Creating Confidence Campaign” on Facebook. Each person who posts a comment can select from 26 nonprofits that s/he wishes to receive a $5 donation from Eileen Fisher. Visitors are prompted by the phrase, Supporting women and girls is important to me because ... Read more: http://www.vevlynspen.com/2012/09/eileen-fisher-topshop-exploit-social.html


A FRESH, NEW START FOR COUTURE FASHION WEEK
WHEN Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week folds up its tent at New York, the action travels across the pond for London Fashion Week, which cranked up on Friday with Antoni & Alison, then Paris. For those in the fashion world all thoughts of The Big Apple are forgotten until February. Nevertheless, over the last nine years, another fashion extravaganza has called New York home (Palm Beach and a few other cities, too.) It is known as Couture Fashion Week and it goes down at the Waldorf-Astoria this evening through Monday. CFW brings together lesser-known couture and luxury designers from around the world, including Spanish designer Isabel Zapardiez. She shows at 6 p.m. Luxury brands and fine arts are exhibited during the three-day showcase; performances figure in the mix, too. Read more: http://www.vevlynspen.com/2012/09/a-fresh-new-start-for-couture-fashion.html


MBFW LAST DAY: ENDING WITH A STRONG SPANISH ACCENT
WHILE the tents at Lincoln Center were closed yesterday (alas, the wrong world order it seems), the last day of Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week, there was action aplenty on runways around Manhattan. Hewing to tradition, both Calvin Klein Collection and Ralph Lauren showed at their respective ateliers. Joining them lately has been fellow vet Stephen Burrows. Also on deck on the last, a passel of up-and-comers like Alisha Trimble, along with a string of talent with Spanish and Spanish-sounding surnames: Victor de Souza, Ricardo Seco, Raul Penaranda, Jorge Vega Umana. While the day did not end with a bang, it had some fireworks, particularly in the form of RL’s Spanish dalliance, Cesar Galindo’s engaging meditation in b&w with colorful departures, as well as Brood’s homage floral. Read more: http://www.vevlynspen.com/2012/09/mbfw-last-day-ending-with-strong.html


MBFW DAY 7: ENOUGH FIREPOWER TO DECLARE VICTORY
REGARDLESS of the season, by day 7 of Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week in New York many of the collections are strong. Understandable, since as the week progresses the guns become bigger. Not that a big gun necessarily produces a rocking firepower collection. More often than not it does, though. Of course, there are always those collections – amongst the young and untried as well as the celebrity set – that lead to head-scratching and wonder about the designer's point of view. Or something along the lines of, “S/he got financing to show that in the tents." More head-scratching and, head-shaking. Further, as one wag put it last night: “Something you can go into a showroom to see and be done with it.” This season was no exception, but let’s keep the focus on the good. Any day that Anna Sui, Douglas Hannant, Michael Kors, Nanette Lepore and Vivienne Tam (See VT video above) are showing is a banner day for fashion. Read more: http://www.vevlynspen.com/2012/09/mbfw-day-7-enough-firepower-to-declare.html


MBFW DAY 6: A MAN WITH A PLAN AND OTHER COOL CUSTOMERS
OSCAR de la Renta is a smooth operator. For several seasons, and perhaps longer, he has been courting a younger customer, shortening the length of dresses, skirts and sleeves, adding more cinches, exposing more shoulder and neckline. Nothing too, too drastic, though the pink tutu dress begs to differ. ODLR continues the courtship with confident machinations for Spring 2013 with a lace-heavy, skin-baring collection with interjections of neon-leather. It embraces the young while keeping his core customer – the chic matron and chic matron-in-training – happy and distracted by the likes of the belted-white cropped-sleeve shirt and skirt ensemble with lace detail. While ODLR never disappoints, he is not alone in this regard. Read more: http://www.vevlynspen.com/2012/09/mbfw-day-6-man-with-plan-and-other-cool.html


MBFW DAY 4: THE CUSTO CHADO CARMEN ZAC & ZANG SHOW
SPRING is energizing and inspirational. It has a way of stirring us, shaking us out of the winter doldrums – stripping away layers, commanding a clearing of every area of our lives, not just our windows and closets. And that brings the conversation around to fashion designers. They, too, are inspired by spring. No doubt, that is a significant reason why collections being shown on runways, catwalks, pushcarts and scaffolding around Manhattan during Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week are leaving certain folks a little breathless, with a smile and a sigh. Hear that ... aaaahhhh!! In February, it was not until around Day 5 that the collections for Fall 2012 began to look like something. Fast forward to September when everybodyhas been enjoying summer, a few too-hot days notwithstanding, and the creative juices are flowing like rapids. Read more: http://www.vevlynspen.com/2012/09/mbfw-day-4-custo-chado-carmen-zac-zang.html


MBFW DAY 3: PRINTS, CUTS, STRAPS AND A FIRE FLOWER
WHERE to start? What a day was Day 3 of Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week! The day played host to many really strong shows. Jill Stuart showed the femme fatale that lurks underneath what had heretofore been a proper exterior. Her reference is Kim Basinger's Lynn Bracken in "L.A. Confidential." She nails it. A case in point is the silk beige dress with a shawl-like shoulder that ties high on the waist and is cut low at the bodice. Underneath is a silver-sequinned bra. Several dresses are made from upstanding fabric but have loose cuts and that doesn’t mean loose-fitting. Here is a very naughty girl but ultimately a nice girl. Monique Lhuillier’s girl is a nice girl, too. In fact, she's probably a mermaid. For Spring 2013, the designer is inspired by water and the creatures within. Birds also figure in the mix. Many cocktail dresses, gowns, blouses and pants are done in prints that resemble fish scales. Some ensembles bear prints that strongly suggest a fish tank. To conjure up the sea only, MH often relies on color. Read more: http://www.vevlynspen.com/2012/09/day-3-mbfw-prints-cuts-straps-and-fire.html


MBFW DAY 2: BRILLIANT COLOR & SPOTLIGHT ON OMAR SALAM
PRESSED to identify a trend from the second day of Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week, one could make a strong case for a bright spring. A really bright spring. Quite brilliant, actually. It was very much in evidence at W118 by Walter Baker, Helmut Lang, Sally LaPointe, Concept Korea, Noon by Noor and particularly at Sherri Hill, where the colors were sometimes blinding. The day also played host to some really strong collections. One did not get the feeling that the designers called them in. Old lionesses (meant with the utmost respect) like Nicole Miller are always reliable in this regard.Spring-Summer 2013 is no exception. Usually the cutting edge and innovative are palpable in group shows. That helped the day, too. Good examples are Concept Korea and Fashion Law Institute. Read more: http://www.vevlynspen.com/2012/09/mbfw-day-2-brilliant-color-spotlight-on.html


MBFW DAY1: QUIET, THEN ALL HELL BREAKS LOOSE
IT was around siesta time when the joint at the first day of Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week was shaken out of its slumber. The ruckus was caused by the man himself – or rather his presentation – Ozwald Boateng. Showing for the first time at New York and under the rubric of Arise Magazine Presents: African Icons, OB injected a motherlode of energy into what heretofore had been a rather tame affair. That applies not only to the day, but also to others showing under the Arise umbrella. Rather than send the models out one by one, the Ghanian jettisoned them in a group that stood abreast of each other. This was a force and it may have had arms underneath some of those snazzy suit jackets. The force would not be moved; it stood at the mouth of the runway stoically looking straight ahead, daring anyone who dared. It was a formidable sight. Read more: http://www.vevlynspen.com/2012/09/day-1-mbfw-quiet-then-all-hell-broke.html


DOINGS APLENTY IN NYC THE DAY BEFORE FASHION WEEK
ONE day before the official start of the Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week New York Spring-Summer shows and presentations, Fashion was partying like it was 1999. There were happenings up the yazoo! The grandest of them all was the luncheon celebrating the presentation of the 2012 Couture Council Award for Artistry of Fashion to Oscar de la Renta. The award is bestowed annually on a truly extraordinary designer by the Couture Council of The Museum at the Fashion Institute of Technology (MFIT). It is star-studded. Just about everybody who is anybody who is in town and who has money to burn is here. Some (former first lady Barbara Bush, for one) journeyed to New York for the occasion. Read more: http://www.vevlynspen.com/2012/09/doings-aplenty-in-nyc-day-before.html


IT’S SUMMERTIME AND THE SALES ARE EASY
Where has the month gone? According to the calendar, it is 23 Aug. August, what an august month! It presides over many noteworthy events, one of the biggest of which is clothing and accessory sales. By the start of the month, just about every major department store, designer and discounter has plastered the joint with signs advertising markdowns on their merchandise. For serious buyers, meaning bargain hunters, this is the best time of year to top up the spring/summer wardrobe for next year. Of course, things have been mercilessly pawed over, but amongst the rubble are always a few gems. Below is info on and photos of wares from a few shops/boutiques on the path less trodden that also have hanging sales shingles. Read more: http://www.vevlynspen.com/2012/08/its-summertime-and-sales-are-easy.html


LIVING IN THE MOMENT, CHANTELLE ROLLS OUT FALL 2012
THE atmosphere was fun, festive and friendly at its Madison Avenue showroom last week when French lingerie line Chantelle Paris invited the press to view its Fall 2012 collection. The tone was set by a scrumptious crudite and Marquis de la Tour Brut Rosé to wash it down with or to savor with macaroons from Ladurée while guests took in the collection as they would art in a museum or gallery. Lending a salon feel to the proceedings, a professional was on hand to attend any and all who wanted to know her correct bra size. The Fall 2012 collection takes as a reference point cornerstones of both high-end jewelry and high-end lingerie. At Chantelle this includes refinement, elegance, attention to detail and craftsmanship. Read more: http://www.vevlynspen.com/2012/08/living-in-moment-chantelle-rolls-out.html


IT WATCH: G-SHOCK DOES 30 EARLY & OTHER TIMELY STUFF
THE timekeeper that Kelly Rowland co-designed with TW Steel launched globally at a smashing party in New York at the top of the Standard Hotel (formerly known at The Boom Boom Room). The night was electric. Causing some of the sparks was Kelly Rowland, herself. Another instigator was a fireworks display commanded by TW Steel CEO Jordy Cobelens, a tribute to KR who is the brand’s global ambassador. Read more: http://www.vevlynspen.com/2012/08/it-watch-g-shock-does-30-early-other.html


NELSON MANDELA SUITS UP WITH 466/64 FASHION
NELSON Mandela has reached many milestones.One of the latest is 466/64 Fashion, a clothing line inspired by the elder statesman. The men’s, women’s and children’s lifestyle brand made its North American debut yesterday – NM’s 94th birthday aka Nelson Mandela International Day – during a fashion presentation and press conference at the South African Consulate in New York. Among those in attendance to see the first global fashion label originating from South Africa was native daughter and singer, Lira, a 466/64 Fashion customer. No doubt, NM is the first ever and only sitting or former head of state to be honored with a fashion line. 46664 is the number (prisoner number 466 of the year 1964) he was given during his long imprisonment in a South African prison for his opposition to apartheid. Read more: http://www.vevlynspen.com/2012/07/nelson-mandela-suits-up-with-46664.html


LIFE IS A BEACH: ITSYKINI CATERS TO MANY MOODS
ONE bikini. Up to 10 different looks. That’s what the convertible bikini, Itsykini, promises. Of course, there are other convertibles out there but most only provide three or four options. With Itsykini, created last year by Annie-Claude Toledano and on the market several months now, a few extras add up. It’s simple. By exchanging and arranging bows and straps the wearer can create numerous looks based on her (or his) mood. Itsykini gets its name from the Brian Hyland hit, “Itsy Bitsy.” According to company p.r., “The women who wear Itsykini have character and love to play and adapt their clothing to fit their ever changing mood and personality.” Read more: http://www.vevlynspen.com/2012/07/life-is-beach-itsykini-caters-to-many.html


FINAL DAY MBFW: MUCH LIKE GOOD OLE AND NEW 'STRUT'
IN a seemingly endless and disturbing cultural moment during which U.S. fashion has largely gone corporate, one can grow nostalgic for the good ole days. Those were the days before the tents, New Media, Livestream, YouTube et al.; before everybody was a fashion journalist; before gift bags had the power to provoke stealing, stampeding and hording. Virtually all designers invited press, buyers and other vested interests to their showrooms to present their fabulous collections and fabulous models. It was a celebratory atmosphere. It was all very civilized; hospitable. One was welcomed with a smile, given a run-of-show and offered refreshments. At breakfast there might be orange juice, coffee and muffins or croissants. From afternoon through the balance of the day Champagne (very little nonChampagne sparkling wine was on offer back then) flowed. It was all very civilized; hospitable. Did I say that already? I did? It bears repeating. Read more: http://www.vevlynspen.com/2012/02/final-day-mbfw-much-like-good-ole-and.html


DAY 7 MBFW: FASHION LOSES A TRUE ICON
ZELDA Kaplan took the hands of Yours Truly and placed them in hers. She looked at me with great compassion and informed me that I am too young to be so worried. We were at a New Year's Eve party a few years ago. Instead of enjoying myself as she was, I was on a tear about this, that and the other. She gave me to know in no uncertain terms that I should not spend my precious moments in this life fretting about things over which I had no control. Of course, I am aware of this. At the time, though, I rarely acted as if I did. I have since tried to heed this advice with more vigor. Read more: http://www.vevlynspen.com/2012/02/day-7-mbfw-fashion-loses-true-icon.html


DAY 6 MBFW: A LOT TO BE HAPPY ABOUT
OF course one does not have to have a Wow! factor every day. That would exhaust the superlative very quickly would it, not? There was no Wow! on yesterday, Day 6 of Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week New York. Yet it was a pretty good day. On runways, stairs and other presentation surfaces were collections, both engaging and captivating … Ghassan Yazbeck makes his fashion week debut under the auspices of the iFashion Network emerging designer showcase. He offers a Fall 2012 collection that is bold, jaunty, feminine and utterly wearable. The recent Parsons grad, a middle-aged man who also has a chemical engineering degree from McGill University, is not content with a simple jacket, skirt, dress or shorts. Read more: http://www.vevlynspen.com/2012/02/day-6-mbfw-lot-to-be-happy-about.html


DAY 5 MBFW: MARC JACOBS KNOWS WHAT HE'S ABOUT
THE Wow! came in more ways than one last night, just as Day 5 of Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week New York was shuttering. Thank you, Marc Jacobs. … MJ is like God in this respect: His thoughts are not our thoughts. For instance, to show his Fall 2012 collection he chooses a fantasy set out of some unknown dystopian world; indeed, it is a place that is gray and moody, the last of its best gone to the dust. It is also magnificent. Read more: http://www.vevlynspen.com/2012/02/day-5-mbfw-marc-jacobs-know-what-hes.html


DAY 4 MBFW: CUSTO BARCELONA BRINGS IT. WOW!
ONE knows what to expect from Custo Barcelona: a panoply of prints. Always, however, is the question of how will designer Custo Dalmau merge them. A disclaimer: Custo Barcelona is not for the faint. These are not materials for the masses, and thank God for that. For fall 2012, homage is paid to visionaries and the pioneers of creativity. The result is a brilliant patchwork of wool both, geometric-shaped and graphic boiled, as well as leather, metallic patterns, technical finished fabrics and some others. The men are dressed a tad more demurely than normal; a few suits are so accessible that JC Penney might reach out. As usual the ladies have as much on as they can carry. Read more: http://www.vevlynspen.com/2012/02/day-4-mbfw-custo-barcelona-brings-it.html


DAY 3 MBFW: STILL NO WOW!, BUT NO YUCK! EITHER
NO superlatives yet. Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week New York Fall 2012 marches on and seems to have not lost themomentum set by Day 2. Aside from disclosing that she is feeling a bit out of sorts because the Venexiana show wasn’t the transportive affair of past seasons, your humble tour guide will reserve further comment about Day 3 for later. Meanwhile, take a look at the Venexiana video and enjoy the photos below. Read/see more: http://www.vevlynspen.com/2012/02/day-3-mbfw-no-wow-but-no-yuck-either.html


DAY 2 MBFW: LOOKS LIKE BRIGHTER DAYS AHEAD
NO Wow! moments dawned on Day 2 of Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week New York Fall 2012. Still, it was not a bad day. The forecast is two parts sun, one part clouds … Designers Carly Cushnie and Michelle Ochs at Cushnie et Ochs pay homage to Pedro Almodóvar's “The Skin I Live In.” The film starts Antonio Banderas as a plastic surgeon with Frankensteinian designs on an unsuspecting patient (Elena Anaya). The sexy, vixenish , sometimes dominatrix-ish pencil dresses and gowns bare nips, tucks, darts, cutouts, cording and coverups here, there and nearly everywhere. Is there really any difference between designers’ scissors and a surgeon’s scalpel? Read more: http://www.vevlynspen.com/2012/02/day-2-mbfw-looks-like-brighter-days.html


MBFW DAY 1: NO WOW! BUT REASON FOR OPTIMISM
“I want to see something that will make me go, Oh my God – with a pause – Oh. My. God,” a Boston acquaintance asserts with the enthusiasm of someone who has figured out precisely what is missing from the spaghetti sauce. At the time of this epiphany last night, we are milling about the lobby of The Shops at The Plaza watching Yuna Yang’s intermittent presentation in progress. The remarks of this boutique owner, an exquisite lady of a certain age, are informed by the fact that she is back in the bosom of Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week New York for the first time in an age. (She spoke wistfully of the era when the incomparable Naomi Campbell ruled the runways). “The models make the clothes,” declared she. Read more: http://www.vevlynspen.com/2012/02/mbfw-day-1-no-wow-but-reason-for.html


AT MBFW, NICHOLAS K OPENS WITH NOD TO WILD WEST
AFTER wandering aimlessly in a whitewashed land for Spring 2012, Nicholas K landed in a town somewhere in the Wild West just in time for the Fall 2012 harvest. There's a new sheriff in this dusty, lawless town and s/he is dressed to kill, if necessary, in multi-layered get-ups with maximum cool, attitude, asymmetry and fluidity. Topping it off is a black hat worthy of Clint Eastwood in his "man with no name" westerns. Read more: http://www.vevlynspen.com/2012/02/at-mbfw-nicholas-k-opens-with-nod-to.html


DAY 2 MFW: D&G REVEALS CONCEALS AND TEASES
“THE D&G SS12 Womenswear show is quickly approaching: the first thing we want to know is the mood,” teases Swide, the in-house digital rag of Dolce&Gabbana about the D&G show that will start in less than two hours. “We show you just enough not to ruin the surprise for when the gorgeous models take over.”

Judging by the snatches that have been revealed it appears that the collection is going to be heavy on prints. They are Arabian-esque, Hermes-esque and floral; some may even tell a story. The color palette is brilliant red/gold/marine blue/pink/lime green and orange but not the aggressive coral so prevalent on runways in New York last week. The color scheme, also in solids and color blocks, extends to the various and sundry accessories of D&G, too. Read more: http://www.vevlynspen.com/2011/09/day-2-mfw-d-reveals-conceals-and-teases.html


NYFW GOES OUT WITH FALLS, SPILLS AND CRIES OF OUTRAGE
THE final day of Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week New York Spring 2012 was marked by rain, wind, falling temps, a plunging designer and protests. The latter first. Protests are nothing new at Fashion Week. For years, PETA was a fixture at Dennis Basso or the show of any designer using real fur. But in what has to be a first, Human Rights Watch and others, including children, were assembled outside Cipriani 42nd Street in time for the Guli show to bring attention to human rights abuses in the Central Asian country of Uzbekistan. Read more: http://www.vevlynspen.com/2011/09/nyfw-goes-out-with-falls-spills-and.html


DAY 7: A MASTERLY DEMO OF HOW IT'S DONE
CHADO Ralph Rucci presented a master class yesterday in how to design a collection. In fact Ralph Rucci's Spring 2012 collection is masterful, marvelous, magnificent. Any other superlative that suggests greatness would be appropriate. Those who did not fill some of the empty seats in the Theatre tent at Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week New York missed a very important teachable moment. Read more: http://www.vevlynspen.com/2011/09/day-7-masterly-demo-of-how-its-done.html


DAY 6 NYFW: MASTERWORKS, MESSES & KIRSTIE ALLEY
WORD is that the Oscar de la Renta show was an even harder ticket this season, what with the move to his new 42nd street digs. The lucky few who made the cut got an extra closeup look. The runway so narrow, the seats so close. In what was the Best Overall Show of the day at Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week New York Spring 2012, OdlR employed various masterstrokes into his handywork – brilliant colors, lush fabrics, impeccable stitching and crocheting, inspired folding. The result is a sexy, classy, sophisticated, lush, hip-ish collection that will please his longtime clients and win a few others, especially among the young get. Read more: http://www.vevlynspen.com/2011/09/day-6-nyfw-masterworks-messes-kirstie.html


DAY 5 NYFW: RETIRING COLLECTION FROM RETIRING LADY?
BOY, were tongues awagging after the Betsey Johnson show. Hardcore fans loved it. Some thought it boring, while others observed that she had the prettiest models. A goodly number declared it the most accessible show BJ has staged in some time.“Who wears those clothes,” one wag grunted, referring to the BJ of most seasons past. “I can see someone buying these.” Read more: http://www.vevlynspen.com/2011/09/day-5-nyfw-retiring-collection-from.html


DAY 4 NYFW: ALL THE HUES ARE FIT TO PRINT
DIANE von Furstenberg titled her laidback, optimistic Spring 2012 show “Beginnings.” Like Custo Barcelona, it is heavy on clever and colorful floral print combinations. However, DVF merits notice for her print work because it stands out in area where she does not normally specialize in such depth. Sometimes the prints may feature one color combination such as a v-neck dress with subtle ruching ending in a tie at the waist. It is a rather engaging tableau of three different b&w florals. Read more: http://www.vevlynspen.com/2011/09/day-4-nyfw-all-hues-are-fit-to-print.html


DAY 3 NYFW: BETTER DAYS AHEAD AND GOOD EVENINGS
IT seems to be on the same trajectory of a fine wine. Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week New York Spring 2012 is getting better with age. Day 3 is the best so far. As with Day 2, the committee is intensely discussing who merits “best overall show,” or say, “best interpretation” of a vision.” It is not difficult to imagine that Vivienne Tam will figure in the talks for her insightful meditations on a Chinese garden. One contender for the latter award is Alexander Wang who infused the NASCAR vibe into some cool street and club clothes. Read more:
http://www.vevlynspen.com/2011/09/day-3-nyfw-better-days-ahead-and-good.html


DAY 2 NYFW: WE'RE IN THE MONEY! ... (METALLIC STRIKE)
ON Day 1, there was a pronounced lack of verve, vivacity, vision. You name it, it wasn’t there. Some 24 hours later there is an embarrassment of riches. Whereas before, there could be no “best overall show” designation, for instance, now there is too much from which to choose. The committee is in intense discussion. Do standby. Meanwhile, there are other observations to make … Read more: http://www.vevlynspen.com/2011/09/day-2-nyfw-were-in-money-metallic.html


DAY 1 NYFW: THIS JOINT IS NOT JUMPIN'
THE first day of Fashion Week came in with a whimper. One can only hope that it went out like a lion at dawn after some smashing Fashion’s Night Out party. Certainly, it is not that that first day of Mercedes Benz Fashion Week New York Spring 2012 was awful. It is noteworthy in that there were no high points. None. Not one. Yet there is case for the opposite. Read more: http://www.vevlynspen.com/2011/09/day-1-nyfw-this-joint-is-not-jumpin.html


NYFW: IN A TRADITION NOW, NICHOLAS K GETS IT STARTED
IN a few hours at (9 a.m. or thereabouts), Nicholas K will rule the runway, kickstarting the eight-day relay known as Fashion Week, or more formally, Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week New York Spring 2012. This season marks the first full year at Lincoln Center. Designers and siblings Nicholas and Christopher Kunz have been mum about Spring 2012 but it is not expected that they will stray from form. That is, smartly deconstructed classic silhouettes for men and women that take to layering, mixing/matching and throwing a nice wrench into a look that wants to be too buttoned down. All is subtle, including the colors. Read more: http://www.vevlynspen.com/2011/09/nyfw-in-new-tradition-nicholas-k-gets.html


FOR FIT MUSEUM'S COUTURE COUNCIL, IT'S VALENTINO
Valentino Clemente Ludovico Garavani is journeying to New York to receive an award from the Couture Council of The Museum at the Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT). The man behind some of the most iconic designs of the last half-century will receive his honor next Wednesday (7 Sept.), the day before Day 1 of Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week New York. The Couture Council’s main mission is to talk up, secure works for, raise public awareness of and raise funds for The Museum at the FIT. A big piece in the fundraising arm is the Couture Council Awards Luncheon. Read more: http://www.vevlynspen.com/2011/09/for-fit-museums-couture-council-its.html

TONI FRANCESC SPRING 2012 AT HOME IN BARCELONA
THE sleeveless, chocolate brown organza/silk/linen(?) dress/jumper is voluminous, cavernous and billowing. It looks as if it might take flight if it isn’t battened down. A rather amorphous creation, it appears in “Seekers,” the Toni Francesc Spring 2012 collection, which he debuted a few hours ago at Barcelona Fashion Week aka 080 Barcelona Fashion. "Seekers is inspired by the migrations of nomadic people, those who make their ways along rough and tumble terrains got up in sackcloth-like dresses, tent dresses, fairy pants, bustled jackets, etc. The types who favor asymmetrical cuts in brown, beige, red, yellow and blue. Read more: http://www.vevlynspen.com/2011/07/toni-francesc-spring-2012-at-home-in.html


TRY TIARAS & TRINKETS WITH 'SET IN STYLE' FACEBOOK APP
IT’S a litle crooked. Can’t see it? Zoom in on it. A little more. More. More. See. Tilt it to the right, a touch more. Perfect. Now, zoom out. Save. It’s a print. Post it or send it. Either way, the tiara worn by Her Serene Highness Princess Grace of Monaco fits perfectly. Of course, the tiara is not literally available for one and all to try on. It is however, virtually available for doing so. It is one of the trinkets on view in “Set in Style: The Jewelry of Van Cleef & Arpels” at the Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum. Hurry, the exhibit shutters on 4 July. Read more: http://www.vevlynspen.com/2011/06/shoedazzle-wear-your-patriotism-proudly.html


TRACY REESE CELEBRATES FIVE YEARS IN STYLE, OF COURSE
TRACY Reese celebrated the fifth anniversary of her boutique at her Meatpacking District location with cupcakes, libations, well-wishers and famous/semi-famous friends, including Veronica Webb, Tika Sumpter (“Gossip Girl”), Tinsley Mortimer. Other party favors: a 25 percent discount on summer stock, and a portion of proceeds from the night’s sales set aside for New York City Aids Fund. Read more: http://www.vevlynspen.com/2011/06/tracy-reese-celebrates-five-years-in.html


SARTORIAL SLANT ON KANYE’S DARK TWISTED FANTASIES
FROM Kanye West’s flights of fancy to your arm. Or neck or waist. Or both. Or wherever you please, really ... Four print scarves. On a very cursory glance (but not touch), the silk twill affairs (35 × 35”/90 × 90 cm/250€) can be mistaken for an Hermes scarf. They depict characters from KW’s musical fantasies, which really are twisted and rather weird, to tell you the truth. In fairness, though, fantasies do tend to embody such characteristics. Before they were scarves the fantasies, painted by George Condo, existed as packaging, courtesy of M/M (Paris) for KW’s acclaimed “My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy” album. Read more: http://www.vevlynspen.com/2011/06/sartorial-slant-on-kanyes-dark-twisted.html


WHO IS THIS WOMAN? AND WHAT IS SHE WEARING?

ON a recent rainy Thursday night, eyewitnesses and BRAVO cameras were present when Jene' Luciani turned up at her “The Bra Book” e-book release party at Restaurant at the Charles Hotel turned out in a sleeveless gown with white bustier top embellished with bows and hoop skirt of white and pink color gradation with red sequins. The skirt is made from 200 bras. The frock is reported to be the world’s only “bra dress.” Not sure of the size of each but they look like B cups. While the dress is a one-off – at this writing in any case – the book is available for all comers, and not a moment too soon. Read more: http://www.vevlynspen.com/2011/03/who-is-this-woman-and-what-is-she.html


IT GETS BETTER IS THE HEIGHT OF FASHION
BY JENNIFER MENDOZA
THE
goal of the It Gets Better Project is to send a message of hope and raise awareness about teen bullying by supporting kids who are the victims of it and who are contemplating suicide. It specifically aims to make young LGBT people aware of famous and prominent people who are out and proud about their sexuality. Read more: http://www.vevlynspen.com/2011/03/eastern-printswestern-forms-of-house.html


EASTERN PRINTS & WESTERN FORMS OF HOUSE OF ROSSIL
BY JENNIFER MENDOZA
TIRED
of the same style old styles??? Now there is a new place to shop for the spring/summer wardrobe and future wardrobe needs. None other than House Rossil. It is the new online boutique that is an extension of the Washington, D.C.-based women's apparel and accessories design house of the same name. Read more: http://www.vevlynspen.com/2011/03/eastern-printswestern-forms-of-house.html


DAY 8 NYFW: GOING OUT WITH L.A.M.B., LIONS
THE last day of Fashion Week. By Day 3, those on their grind can’t wait until it comes, yet when it does nostalgia begins to set in. One almost wants to start over again. Note the almost, for by the end the eyes cannot take another sheath of chiffon, tuft of fur, passel of folds … Read more: http://www.vevlynspen.com/2011/02/day-8-nyfw-going-out-with-lamb-lions.html


DAY 7 NYFW: MILESTONES & SUPER MOD PEDIGREES
ELEGANCE&glamour, Michael Douglas&Catherine Zeta-Jones,
pragmatism&decadence, Bette Midler& Anjelica Huston, b&w. When celebrating 30 it is important to have just the right mix. Michael Kors the brand – not the man – welcomed the milestone in high-gloss style yesterday with celebrities galore and frocks a-many. Read more: http://www.vevlynspen.com/2011/02/day-7-milestones-and-models-wsuper.html


DAY 6 NYFW: FASTEN … SEATBELTS; GOING PLACES
A year ago when Joaquín Trías made his debut at Fashion Week, on the last day no less, he showed one of the best collections of the week. The fabrics were of the finest silk organzas and so forth. He sent out gorgeous blouses and exquisite funnel skirts. Alas, while the latter were simply breathtaking, they constricted the movement of the models. Some were practically hobbling down the runway. That was then, this is now. Read more: http://www.vevlynspen.com/2011/02/day-6-nyfw-fasten-seatbelts-going.html


DAY 5 NYFW: LUXURY, WHIMSY & ROCK ‘N’ ROLL
http://www.vevlynspen.com/2011/02/day-5-nyfw-luxury-whimsy-rock-n-roll.html


DAY 4 NYFW: HE’S GOTTA BE HIM
http://www.vevlynspen.com/2011/02/day-4-nyfw-hes-gotta-be-him.html


DAY 3 NYFW: MASTERFUL REDUX FOR AGE
http://www.vevlynspen.com/2011/02/day-3-nyfw-masterful-redux-for-age.html


DAY 2 NYFW: BANG BANG ‘… IS FUTILE
http://www.vevlynspen.com/2011/02/fashwk-d2-bang-bang-resistance-is.html


DAY 1 NYFW: BLAChttp://www.vevlynspen.com/2011/02/day-3-nyfw-masterful-redux-for-age.htmlK ISN’T BORING. IT’S BEAUTIFUL.
http://www.vevlynspen.com/2011/02/fashion-week-black-isnt-boring-its.html


NYFW: WALK ON WILD SIDE W/NICHOLAS K
http://www.vevlynspen.com/2011/02/fashion-week-on-wild-side-wnicholas-k.html


PORTS 1961 NOW HAS DESIGNS ON MEN
http://www.vevlynspen.com/2011/02/ports-1961-now-has-designs-on-men.html


AT 100, TRUSSARDI LOOKS MIGHTY, MIGHTY FINE
http://www.vevlynspen.com/2011/01/at-trussardi-100-looks-mighty-mighty.html


ABI FERRIN & OFF FIELD DO GOOD WELL
http://vevlynspen.blogspot.com/2011/01/abi-ferrin-off-field-do-good-well.html


A BIG LOSER IS PUMPED UP FOR GOOD REASON
http://vevlynspen.blogspot.com/2011/01/big-loser-is-pumped-up-for-good-reason.html


BROOKS BROTHERS LOOSENS TIE FOR SWINGIN' SOIREE
http://vevlynspen.blogspot.com/2010/12/brooks-brothers-loosens-tie-for-swingin.html


IN OCTOBER, RAG TRADE REALLY TURNS OUT FOR CANCER
http://vevlynspen.blogspot.com/2010/10/in-oct-rag-trade-really-turns-out-for.html


FASHION WEEK AT LINCOLN CENTER ... IT'S ON!
http://vevlynspen.blogspot.com/2010/09/fashion-week-at-lincoln-center-its-on.html

STRANGE, WONDERFUL, BIZARRE & FUNNY START
http://vevlynspen.blogspot.com/2010/09/strange-wonderful-bizarre-funny-start.html

AWAY FROM THE CENTER/EMBRACING SLEEK CURVES
http://vevlynspen.blogspot.com/2010/09/away-from-centerembracing-sleek-curves.html


GLORIOUS FUSION OF COLOR/SHAPE/TEXTURE
http://vevlynspen.blogspot.com/2010/09/contained-explosion-of-color-and-other.html


ON A GRAND TOUR WITH A GIRL AT HEART
http://vevlynspen.blogspot.com/2010/09/on-grand-tour-with-girl-at-heart.html


EAST AND WEST MAKE NICE AT WANG CENTER
http://vevlynspen.blogspot.com/2010/09/east-and-west-make-nice-at-wang-center.html


SUITALBE UNIFORMS IN AN UPTOWN WORLD
http://vevlynspen.blogspot.com/2010/09/suitable-uniforms-in-uptown-world.html


A STORY TOLD WITH HEART AND SOUL
http://vevlynspen.blogspot.com/2010/09/story-told-with-heart-soul-and-style.html


BEST OF SHOW, DAY 1: ...
http://vevlynspen.blogspot.com/2009/09/bold-colors-and-draping-take-day.html


DAY 2: IT EBBS AND FLOWS ...
http://vevlynspen.blogspot.com/2009/09/day-2.html


DAY 3: CREATING BUTTERFLIES IN THE STOMACH ...
http://vevlynspen.blogspot.com/2009/09/models-line-elevated-slanted-plank-on.html


DAY 4: THEY JUST WANNA HAVE FUN ...
http://vevlynspen.blogspot.com/2009/09/day-4-they-just-wanna-have-fun.html


DAY 5: INSPIRED BY OBJECTS ...
http://vevlynspen.blogspot.com/2009/09/day-5-inspired-by-objects-up-there-and.html


DAY 6: LAIDBACK, RELAXED AND EASYGOING ...
http://vevlynspen.blogspot.com/2009/09/day-6-laidback-relaxed-and-easygoing.html


DAY 7: ALL TOGETHER NOW ...
http://vevlynspen.blogspot.com/2009/09/day-7-all-together-now-in-one-go.html


FIN: SPANIARD. RAINS. WHIMSY. ...
http://vevlynspen.blogspot.com/2009/09/last-day-spaniard-rains-whimsy-cashmere.html





 
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