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23-09-2005
  1
flaunt the imperfection
 
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Limited Edition = Maximum Desirability
Move on to a new niche
(Filed: 21/09/2005)
Clare Coulson

Some women want to feel they are part of the pack; they like to shop in the coolest stores, to carry the latest bags, and to dress in of-the-moment labels. There are others, however, who go their own way, creating their own style by jumbling labels and fashion references, and wearing clothes that cannot quite be placed.

The big brands were once the most coveted labels, but for these women, something distinctive and quirky from an obscure designer carries far more cachet. Such individuals are a growing band, and are responsible for one of the most interesting shifts in fashion.

Last week, Harvey Nichols opened Demi-Couture - a slick area devoted to beautiful eveningwear from barely known labels, such as Giambattista Valli's extraordinarily glamorous gowns from his first own-label collection, and elegant, couture-inspired pieces from Martin Grant - one of Cate Blanchett's favourite designers.

"Vintage gave back that sense of discovery: the clothes hadn't been in a magazine. But the people whom we would call the 'fashion literate' are looking for an alternative to vintage now. Underground designers, or 'nouveau niche', as we call it, is the next step."

Many of the new niche labels share a worn-in feel: thanks to clever pattern-cutting and pre-washed fabrics, they look as though they have been hanging in a wardrobe for decades, not days.

Despite virtual obscurity, the Los Angeles label Wyeth already has a celebrity following that includes Gwyneth Paltrow, Drew Barrymore and Salma Hayek. The label's designer, Todd Magill, will throw any fabric - even delicate chiffons - through a wash to give it a worn-in feel. He then adds couture-style details such as silk-covered buttons to add to the precious vintage effect.

Currently, the biggest buzz is surrounding a trio of Danish labels: Malene Birger, Rützou, and Day, Birger and Mikkelson - next month, the last-named will open its first London shop on Sloane Street. While each has a highly individual feel, they are united by the kind of details that set niche brands apart:they all use interesting, unusual prints, they focus strongly on colour, and have a distinctive handwriting.

Miss Selfridge is continuing its reinvention with a capsule collection by Bella Freud, which will go on sale next month. The vintage-inspired range includes sheer Biba-style long blouses in muted shades, and crocheted mini-dresses. There are plenty of Freud's signature pieces, too - from baker-boy caps and skinny-leg jeans to curvy velvet jackets.

excerpts from here...
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/fashion/m.../efniche21.xml


Last edited by softgrey; 23-09-2005 at 04:12 PM.
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25-09-2005
  2
flaunt the imperfection
 
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**i thought it was interesting that they mentioned the danish designers since i have noticed some of our members wearing these labels and i even purchased a rutzou top myself whilst in london...
(though i admittedly had no info on the brand...i simply like the top)


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25-09-2005
  3
elementary.
 
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interesting article soft !
thankyou for posting . .
seen alot of malene birger + birger & mikkelson
shown in recent style supplements w/daily newspapers
so they're catching onto this . . . a bit late imo

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Last edited by i_<3_chanel; 25-09-2005 at 08:31 AM.
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25-09-2005
  4
flaunt the imperfection
 
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my pleasure chanel...

i have to confess that i am one of those who covets items that are limited in their distribution...
which somewhat assures exclusivity...
if only so that i know that i won't happen to see some 12 yr old wearing the same thing as me......

...

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25-09-2005
  5
elementary.
 
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i'm guilty of tht too . .
i like the idea of wearing clothes which 'cannot be placed' . . as the article puts it !
& i think this whole concept is much more mature . . .
it's wearing the clothes for wht they are . . & they're quality / aesthetic appeal
{the only reasons anyone should ever wear anythn imo . . }
rather than the image the 'label' / designer is going to project . .
i think it shows a move away frm the whole loud 'designer' label orientated culture etc . . .
def. this is smthn tht is aimed more at the 'fashion literate' {as the article says !}
but there'll always be those tht don't 'get' these niche designers . . . .

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Last edited by i_<3_chanel; 25-09-2005 at 12:35 PM.
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25-09-2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by softgrey

which somewhat assures exclusivity...
Exactly. That's why I buy designer in the first place, to be able to wear things that others aren't... but now that it seems more and more people are buying into designer, even some of those items lack in exclusivity. The next step is going with some of the lesser-known designers, ones who are a bit more obscure.

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25-09-2005
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hmmm i got the limited edition pirate boots because they were limited edition - i probably shouldnt have because i allready have a pair just without the squiggle print

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25-09-2005
  8
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^

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25-09-2005
  9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by softgrey
**i thought it was interesting that they mentioned the danish designers since i have noticed some of our members wearing these labels and i even purchased a rutzou top myself whilst in london...
(though i admittedly had no info on the brand...i simply like the top)

i find it interesting that all of these have gotten a break-through now. none of these are any new to me as i'm danish but i still think they are a bit late as ms. chanel mentioned. i read somewhere that day birger et mikkelsen actually is on the top10 of the largest-selling brands in the UK right now whereas Malene Birger and Rützou are still fairly unknown to most people. that's what i think at least.

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25-09-2005
  10
Naturellement pulpeuse
 
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Men seem to be obsessed by 'limited edition' in the UK - mainly men who don't even like clothes. Maybe it's a status thing...

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25-09-2005
  11
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I'm one of those who likes to find something "different". I don't consciously think that way...I just seem to choose the less obvious things out there.I definitely go for quality and interesting features,and I like to express myself through my clothes.I also don't really care whether the features I like are visible to others....sometimes I buy something because it has a wonderful lining,interesting buttons,or because it feels great on.

Most of the the time when I get that YESSS!!! feeling,it's because of something different.the exception here is my Chloe Paddington bag .

When I lived in London and clothed myself almost entirely from the British high street,Londoners thought I'd bought my clothes somewhere exotic and interesting and I got a lot of "where did you get that?" .It was just not what they would have thought to get.I think Mettchen has that with her H&M finds LOL.

As for the Danish designers.....sigh....I ADORE Day,Birger et Mikkelson especially for summer and buy everything I can lay my hands on .... it's instant LOVE all the time... ...I also love Mads Norgaard .Malene Birger is a bit too girlie for me...too much beading and glitter in the stuff you can find in Rotterdam anyway...and her knits are itchy.


Last edited by QuirkyCool; 25-09-2005 at 02:44 PM.
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26-09-2005
  12
V.I.P.
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by i_<3_chanel
...
i think it shows a move away frm the whole loud 'designer' label orientated culture etc . . .
Three Cheers
Quote:
Originally Posted by QuirkyCool
When I lived in London and clothed myself almost entirely from the British high street,Londoners thought I'd bought my clothes somewhere exotic and interesting and I got a lot of "where did you get that?" .It was just not what they would have thought to get.I think Mettchen has that with her H&M finds LOL.
Agreed

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27-09-2005
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I definitely gravitate towards limited edition items. I'm not necessarily attracted to limited edition brand name things that lots of people seem to covet in nyc, but rather clothing produced by smaller lesser known people. I feel more like myself and that I can more freely or independently shape my look. I guess I can't really explain it clearly, but I definitley dont' want to wear obviously identifiable clothing.

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27-09-2005
  14
flaunt the imperfection
 
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yeah...there are some people who run out to buy exactly what they see in an ad or a magazine...

but the more identifiable an item is...(even if there is no visible logo)...
the less likely i am to purchase and wear it...

i don't like being a walking billboard...

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27-09-2005
  15
elementary.
 
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tht's b/c yr 'fashion literate' soft !

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