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28-04-2005
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kimair's Avatar
 
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The Paris 6
from Thursday's NY Times...

Quote:
ATE last February, over lunch in a Paris restaurant, Stefano Pilati, the new designer at Yves Saint Laurent, offered a surprising motive for putting modern-thinking women in tulip skirts and high-necked polka-dot blouses, things that had struck critics as repressively feminine. "My aim was to say, 'We're a fashion elite here,' " Mr. Pilati said. And he is determined to lead. "We should. We're supposed to." You don't have to be a fan of the reality show "Project Runway" to appreciate that fashion has become more and more populist. This is the age, after all, of the adolescent designer, the celebrity designer, the hip-hop designer, and the claimants have been as varied as Sean Combs and Esteban Cortazar, who was 18 when he held his first show.

And though fashion, like politics, is still an insider's game, with its own addicts and agenda-setting editors, nothing, it seems, can compete with the authentic judgment of bloggers and Web viewers. Ask yourself: How elitist can fashion be when the 20 most popular fall 2005 collections on Style.com received a total of 22 million hits in 12 days?

Nevertheless, by the end of the fall shows in March, Mr. Pilati's assertion had been borne out. On the strength of an exceptional series of Paris collections, a new elite had emerged, and with it a sense that every choice these designers made, every proportion and fabric chosen or rejected, represented a superior judgment. They were acting like designers, not stylists or vintage-shop pickers. Retailers, starved for direction, saw the shows as a breakthrough. In New York, despite an influx of new talent, only Marc Jacobs had the power to influence the industry, whether an editor at Condť Nast or the owner of an illicit handbag palace on Canal Street. Milan had Miuccia Prada. In Paris there were six.

Insiders may debate who belongs in this elite class, but they don't dispute the authority of Mr. Pilati, Olivier Theyskens at Rochas, Nicolas Ghesquiere at Balenciaga, Alber Elbaz at Lanvin, Phoebe Philo at Chloť and Mr. Jacobs, who designs his own line and another for Louis Vuitton.

Even fashion industry analysts, who tend to be skeptical of the pronouncements of editors, acknowledge the influence of these designers, whose average age is 35. David Wolfe, the creative director of Doneger Group, which forecasts trends for stores like Nordstrom and Wal-Mart, compares it to that of the Antwerp Six, a group that included Dries van Noten and Martin Margiela, in the early 90's. "They feel the pulse of their times the same way the Belgians did," he said. "And they have the same problem. Everybody feeds off them, except now there's an expectation that your company has to be as big as General Motors. Or Tom Ford."

Is it the air, the Gallic water, les girls? What unites these six designers, only one of whom can claim French birth, and why now? The answer, as simple as it sounds, is fashion.

read the rest of the article here: http://www.nytimes.com/2005/04/28/fa...8insiders.html

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28-04-2005
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wonderful, and definetly very interesting... thank you

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28-04-2005
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What?! Antwerp Six? Is he on drugs...of course he'd have to be,trend forecasting for Wal-Mart! I mean,give me a break....these so called 6 have already been around the block;got tremendous praise. They're not struggling newbies and half are working at Houses with millions of dollars backing them. Those Six were not even known at the time of their arrival in London and they were also independent. That's such an ignorant comparison.

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28-04-2005
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a rather beautiful ending

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28-04-2005
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Great article! Thanks!

"This is the age, after all, of the adolescent designer, the celebrity designer, the hip-hop designer, and the claimants have been as varied as Sean Combs and Esteban Cortazar, who was 18 when he held his first show."

This is so true. It was getting annoying to see EVERYONE with a fashion label.

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sounds like "dirty European aristocracy".....

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28-04-2005
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scott...i think the point the writer is making in the comparison is the amount of 'influence' these designers are currently having on the industry...breathing some new life into it...the way the belgians did when they first emerged...but are no longer...(especially since many of them weren't even able to stay in business)...
the comparison isnt such a literal one as i read it......

so i agree with the names...i don't think marc at lv really meant anything other than bags before fall 04/05...and rochas and philo needed a few seasons to determine the vocabulary for their houses and ...same with elbaz..pilati has been quicker...but that's probably because he was already working at ysl behind the scenes before he took the reins...ghesquiere has gine up and down...but it seems like he's finally found some maturity...

i really think fall 04/05 was a turning point....we saw some major sparks!!...
(which explains why i spent a fortune that season...)...
and for fall 05/06 we see these stars shining brightly...everyone else seems to just fade away into the background...

i do think that this is the new generation of designers who have real staying power...
coming into their own...and finally, confidently taking the lead...
even marc jacobs is only now finally doing something unique and modern...rather than re-working vintage...after all these years...amazing!!...

this really marks a new era in fashion....notice that NOT ONE OF THEM IS WORKING UNDER THEIR OWN NAME>>>....
that really says something about how difficult it is to have your own label these days......
only marc seems to have the best of both worlds...i think he must be a rather smart businessman...or at least his partner must be...


thanks for the great article kimair ....

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Last edited by softgrey; 30-04-2005 at 02:45 AM.
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28-04-2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by softgrey
i really think fall 04/05 was a turning point....we saw some major sparks!!...
(which explains why i spent a fortune that season...)...
and for fall 05/06 we see these stars shining brightly...everyone else seems to just fade away into the background...

this really marks is a new era in fashion....notice that NOT ONE OF THEM IS WORKING UNDER THEIR OWN NAME>>>....
that really says something about how difficult it is to have your own label these days......
only marc seems to have the best of both worlds...i think he must be a rather smart businessman...or at least his partner must be...
no problem

i saw that article and thought the same thing as scott...how could they even begin to make this comparison?? but then after reading more, i have to agree with softie...they are making strides and taking fashion to a different level. things have changed since the antwerp 6...

it is very interesting that none of them design under their own name, they are all either reinvigorating an old house or taking a house known for one thing to a new level. i have read articles with michael kors and narciso rodriguez saying it was very hard to design for a house and do their own label (which is why they both gave up the LVMH houses). Olivier Theyskens did have his own label...did it go under due to money?

also interesting that john galliano wasn't mentioned in the 6, as opposed to pilati...i thought the fashion media loved him...

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28-04-2005
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boo galliano!!!......
he's so old and tired at this point...he really needs to come back down to earth...
that 'drag queen' stuff is so OVER...!!!...it's about softness and romance and elegance now...

fyi...olivier theyskens made a conscious decision to close his own company when he took the job at rochas...
i think you're right kimair....it is really difficult to go back and forth...

i mean...look at marc...
basically he used to do his own collection and then what was basically just accessories at LV...now that the clothes at LV are becoming more developed...his own collection is a bit weaker than usual...you can see where he wasn't able to quite figure out his own collection...probably because he put all the good stuff into LV...remember how the show was over an hour late??...and that was apparently because the clothes weren't right and he kept trying to figure out how to make it work...

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28-04-2005
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I read the article this morning (thought of tFS, of course, but the fascist institution I am consulting for now (and thank our lord jesus christ and virgin mary the project is over tomorrow) won't allow me to get on to tFS). I think it would've been a MUCH better article if Cathy Horyn did not draw parallels to the Antwerp Six. I can't even begin to enumerate the differences. Nevertheless, the article is full of her lightly sarcastic and precise comments, which makes it a good read .

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28-04-2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by softgrey
scott...i think the point the writer is making in the comparison is the amount of 'influence' these designers are currently having on the industry...breathing some new life into it...the way the belgians did when they first emerged...but are no longer...(especially since many of them weren't even able to stay in business)...
the comparison isnt such a literal one as i read it......

Okay,I may have blew it out of proportion a bit But what do you mean,"since many of them weren't able to stay in business"? All the "Six" are still going. As are the majority of the second generation. With the exception of a couple.

Anyway,that not being the point of the article,I don't see how these particular personalities are really surging Paris anymore than they have the last years. Why now all of a sudden are they considered the elite? Weren't some of them elitists back then too? Frankly I see nothing particularly "thriving" from this lot. And they all work for big brands too which makes the point even more impossible for one to truly grasp. Because,really,the only thing keeping Paris thriving during the pret-a-porter weeks are those that are coming in from the other countries.

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28-04-2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by softgrey
boo galliano!!!......
he's so old and tired at this point...he really needs to come back down to earth...
that 'drag queen' stuff is so OVER...!!!...it's about softness and romance and elegance now...
did you even see his last collections?

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28-04-2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by faust
I read the article this morning (thought of tFS, of course, but the fascist institution I am consulting for now (and thank our lord jesus christ and virgin mary the project is over tomorrow) won't allow me to get on to tFS). I think it would've been a MUCH better article if Cathy Horyn did not draw parallels to the Antwerp Six. I can't even begin to enumerate the differences. Nevertheless, the article is full of her lightly sarcastic and precise comments, which makes it a good read .
No joke. I keep re-reading that statement and somehow I still see they trying to compare them in the way I first reacted to. Whether intended like that or not. And for Cathy Horyn to allow that in the article in such way...shame on her. I love her writing but for she to have written so much regarding Belgian fashion,that is such a low one,I think.

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28-04-2005
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I think there is deffiently a new feeling and thous are 'the' designers of the moment.


as for as the antwerp six referance

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28-04-2005
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I really liked that article, I read it at breakfast out here in CA. I found the grouping of the six somewhat haphazard though, surely Marc Jacobs' influence is based primarily around his own (non-Parisian) line? The NY Times is officially the newspaper of the leisure class isn't it? Don't you love the line about "the bottom fashion feeders"?

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29-04-2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scott
Okay,I may have blew it out of proportion a bit But what do you mean,"since many of them weren't able to stay in business"? All the "Six" are still going. As are the majority of the second generation. With the exception of a couple.
.
quote...'there were 6: Ann Demeulemeester, Dirk Bikkembergs, Dirk van Saene, Dries van Noten, Walter van Beirondonck, Marina Yee'

correct me if i am wrong...but i thought walter was basically out of business (though, maybe he still sells a bit in asia)...and also van saene (but coming back now)...bikkembergs has a small presence...but i think isn't even the same brand anymore...with all the logo and sport stuff...and marina yee is..?...well...who is marina yee?...barely anyone really even knows...

it really seems like ann and dries are the only ones having anything that could be considered commercial success..and even they are struggling to keep it going and to expand...continually...

i think the gimmicky title may be a bit distracting......i actually thought it was cute and funny myself..
i think the mid-week articles aren't meant to be heavy fashion pieces usually...they're more chatty...i don't think this was meant to be some huge declaration....more like some astute observations...anyway...there was a lot more stuff in that article that was interesting to me than the two lines referring to the belgians...

**one of the things i found so interesting...
it seems that even though the companies that these paris-based designers work for may be big...they still have some serious financial issues...spending money and making money are apparently two very different things......so who IS making money??...why is everyone always crying poor?!?!...it's so depressing and discouraging to me...!!!...
it's like..if these guys aren't doing well...then, i give up!!...i don't get it...

quote from the article...
Making money is still a problem for most of these brands, and the media attention they receive, while deserved, can overstate the true picture. "Selling 50 pieces at Barneys is fine, but it's not a business," Ralph Toledano, the chief executive of Chloť, said, adding that a problem for small houses like Rochas and Lanvin is that they rely too heavily on the creativity of their designers. "From a company point of view, that's totally unhealthy," Mr. Toledano said. You also need managers who can take a creative idea and turn it into a string of products.

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Last edited by softgrey; 29-04-2005 at 02:39 AM.
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