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13-01-2004
  16
etre soi-meme
 
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thanks for the article chickonspeed, she's quite on point

and yes, i agree and insist, McQueen should keep concentrating and evolving in his own label, he has no need for the ysl chair.

i hope you read this Alexander

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13-01-2004
  17
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I whant tos ee mcqueen!

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13-01-2004
  18
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I can see why he would count the Ortodox Jews as influences. Having seen them in Antwerp with my own eyes,they are beautiful and slim in shilouette--very graceful and elegant in their dress.

Ditto,on the McQueen takeover. He seems to have the midas touch and imo,I think that taking over at YSL would only interfere and distract him in his work with his own label. Eventually,becoming lacklustre. I hope he doesn't take it.

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14-01-2004
  19
kit
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Quote:
Originally posted by Scott@Jan 13th, 2004 - 10:48 pm
I can see why he would count the Ortodox Jews as influences. Having seen them in Antwerp with my own eyes,they are beautiful and slim in shilouette--very graceful and elegant in their dress.

Ditto,on the McQueen takeover. He seems to have the midas touch and imo,I think that taking over at YSL would only interfere and distract him in his work with his own label. Eventually,becoming lacklustre. I hope he doesn't take it.
Will he have any option , bearing in mind that he is in hock to PPR and needs more money from them to grow his womenswear , and NOW his reportedly superlative new menswear label ?

I cannot wait for the new YSL and Gucci appointments to be announced !!!

Regards KIT

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14-01-2004
  20
Mannikin
 
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Thank you for posting this, chick!

I am dying to see the McQueen show! And I hope he doesn't take over YSL Rive Gauche.

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22-01-2004
  21
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Quote:
Romantic Yamamoto
Suzy Menkes International Herald Tribune* Tuesday, January 20, 2004

But shortly after the models at Yohji Yamamoto's show had scooped up the floral outfits and paraded in herbaceous layers of mixed blooms, winter took over: black tailoring with only a flash of flame red dress or a discreet flowered cuff.

The show was a metaphor for the haute couture season, for the Japanese designer opened the shows by presenting his autumn-winter 2004 line - as he has done twice before.

Meanwhile, the haute couture for spring-summer has been mowed down like blades of grass. Only six big houses - Chanel, Dior, Gaultier, Givenchy, Lacroix and Ungaro remain, with Valentino and Versace from Italy. The official calendar is matched by an "off schedule" of young hopefuls, who now outnumber the Paris houses.

Yet Yamamoto has some claim to couture status with his beautiful and romantic tailoring. No matter that we have seen it all before (apart from the floral patterns).

The designer still impresses with the modernity of his cuts that never have a jagged line, even if the loose, curved shapes, some standing away from the body as capes, were toughened up with silver chains or bold buttons marked with a signature Y. Bags built in at the hips like pockets seemed less the ironic take on the logo handbag culture, as Yamamoto has shown before - and more an understanding that the modern woman craves day clothes that are both graceful and practical.
I agree with her on Yamamoto.

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22-01-2004
  22
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Quote:
Dior's Cleopatra*
Suzy Menkes International Herald Tribune* Tuesday, January 20, 2004

An arched back, a proud Nefertiti head with the eyes of a Sphinx - the silhouette outlined at the back of the runway could only be Cleopatra. And with his Dior show that kicked off the haute couture summer season, John Galliano excelled himself in showmanship.
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Gilded dresses in reptilian leather, hieroglyphic prints, dangling scarab earrings, neckpieces with embedded turquoise and platform sandals draped in pearls were all masterpieces of imagination and craftsmanship.
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The celebrity-studded audience was speechless after this extravaganza that left Elizabeth Taylor's famous 1963 rendition of the Egyptian queen look like a peasant on the shores of the Nile.
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"Aah! Oh! I just can't even say anything," stuttered Sarah Jessica Parker from "Sex and the City," lining up with the French actress Arielle Dombasle to shower praise on Galliano, who in taking his bow had bent his body to recreate the Egyptian friezes that had inspired him on a trip to Cairo and Luxor. The Egyptian actress Youssra, invited especially for the show, gasped: "Amazing! What an inspiration." As a hyper-sophisticated image maker of fantasies and dreams, Galliano is nonpareil. How he translated in the blink of a sequined eye a 4,000-year-old culture into clothing was wondrous. Yet this was no history lesson. A sophisticated wink came from the eye that opened the show as part of a cartoon projected on the backdrop.
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"Working on all the details but always keeping it light," Galliano said backstage, although trying even to lift the beaded creations off the hanging rails would require a year's workout.
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The show was both superb and disturbing. Is Galliano the most amazing, evocative and extraordinary designer couture has ever had? Or is he a costumier who has invented a new two-dimensional haute couture, where the house of Dior builds up salable products behind a superbly decorated couture façade? Certainly the bags, with their tiny gilded scales, were delicious; the jewelry an opportunity to relaunch the Egyptian craze that Cartier set off in the 1920's. Many of the outfits could have been the stage costumes designed by Erté in that period.
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But whereas the discovery of Tutankhamen's tomb in 1922 detonated a cultural moment, Galliano just picked Egypt as a seasonal theme. You could not call this show the same old story, because a lot had changed: The women were noble, their bodies covered and no trace lingered of Galliano's trashy couture sexpots. Even the colors were subtle: a wash of soft terra cotta and ochre, flashed with lapis lazuli and gold. Yet the collection still had little to do with the reality of dressing - even dressing up, although some of the embroidered outfits, stripped of their extras, could be adapted as grand gowns. But as the fashion world is unlikely ever to see another madly creative designer working with an exceptional haute couture atelier, this was a moment to savor.
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The season kicked off with Yohji Yamamoto, who presented his fall/$ winter 2004 line - as he has done twice before. And it seemed like a metaphor for the haute couture shows, which have been mowed down like blades of grass until only six big Parisian houses remain. Yamamoto's flowered coats - misty mixes of pink roses - laid on the runway were sweet harbingers of spring. But shortly after the models had scooped up the floral outfits and paraded in herbaceous layers of mixed blooms, winter took over: black tailoring with only a flash of flame red dress, knitted sleeve pieces or a discreet flowered cuff.
.
Yamamoto has some claim to couture status with his beautiful and romantic tailoring. No matter that we have seen most of it before. The designer still impresses with the modernity of cuts that are never jagged, even if the loose, curved shapes, some standing away from the body as capes, were toughened up with silver chains or bold buttons marked with a signature "Y." Bags built in at the hips like pockets seemed less an ironic take on the logo handbag culture, and more an understanding that the modern woman craves day clothes that are both graceful and practical.
I do agree, though, that the Dior show was (kinda) noble. No couture sexpots there.

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22-01-2004
  23
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Quote:
Style: Ungaro's sweet bird of youth
Suzy Menkes IHT Thursday, January 22, 2004

A giggling gaggle of pretty young blondes, in short, bright dresses, perched on a white sofa like birds of paradise. By the time the bride appeared with a kimono floating over her pleated and draped gown, the models had turned the larky presentation into a hen party. For Emanuel Ungaro was out to capture the sweet bird of youth.
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Two haute-couture presentations - Ungaro and Givenchy - both held in the salons of their noble couture houses, raised intriguing questions about youth and age. For whereas Ungaro, a veteran of couture, trained by the great Cristobal Balenciaga, has never seemed so playful or light-handed; Julien Macdonald at Givenchy, in what is surely the 31-year-old British designer's valedictory collection, finally got what couture is all about - but did not make his collection seem as youthful as he is.
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The retreat to the salons is an important part of couture in this millennium. After two decades of extravaganzas, most houses realize that the exceptional workmanship that is the imprimatur of high fashion needs to be seen up close. Hence, the Ungaro models lingering in the salon, the better to see the multicolored beads edging the strap of a pink-and-green dress, or the shoes with their vivid shades and polka-dot heels.
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"I am sick of it all - the big shows, the showing off - I wanted to go back to how it used to be," said Ungaro, who deliberately did not take a runway bow, as clients and press waited expectantly for his appearance.
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Since the sorcerer of couture handed over his ready-to-wear to his apprentice, Giambattista Valli, there has been a fashion tension between the images of the separate lines. But with Wednesday's show, Ungaro gave a witty and playful version of youthful dressing up. It is hard to imagine some of the existing clients in skirts draped thigh high or sprouting multicolored feathers in their hair. But hemlines can be lengthened, there was a simple cream jacket and an easy jersey tunic with narrow pants - and the long-term client Liliane de Bettencourt described the collection as "ravishing."
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And so it was, in its chirrupy, optimistic way. Polka dots burst among flowers as short, colorful coats swung over the tiny draped dresses. Butterfly patterns sparkled, lace was subtly embroidered and roses flowered on a tulle cape. Was it all too much for the dripping Parisian skies, the morose economic climate and the need of most women for quiet chic? Hey! This was for summer - and can't a couturier have a dream?
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Whatever upbeat vision the effervescent Macdonald had on his arrival at Givenchy three years ago, it has been drummed out of him. The pep and frenzy that fills his London shows under his own label do not seem to make it on the Eurostar to Paris. The result was a polite and well-judged collection, but not one to create a fizzy new image for the French house.
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The powers that be at Givenchy did everything to whip up some excitement: a collection shown to a few behind closed salon doors; a long, long wait, fueled with Champagne; the front row positioning of the "Lord of the Rings" actress Liv Tyler; the tardy arrival of Christina Aguilera, kitted out in a leg-revealing Givenchy outfit. The pint-size pop star sat next to Ozwald Boateng, another British designer, who has been tapped to do Givenchy menswear and who, when asked whether he might also take over the women's line, smiled enigmatically.
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But there the excitement stopped - dead. Yet this was one of the most polished collections Macdonald has shown for Givenchy with its focus on crusty lace tailored into sharp suits and draped dresses suggesting that the designer is integrating with the workers in the ateliers.
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A trench coat with bold lacy cut-outs that opened the show was a promising start. Yet shown over a tulle skirt it seemed anchored in a vision of couture that dated from those old glory days in the 1950's.
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Nothing wrong with that. The "fifties" are having a fashion revival. But there was no wink of wit that might have made cut-outs on dresses look like they were an ironic take on vintage table linen. What you saw was what you got: a nice collection of client-friendly, wearable clothes.
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Macdonald had added a soupçon of himself: his skill with the crochet needles for hand-made dresses, and his fascination with macramé and tie-dye from the hippie era. But even though the designer has grown in sophistication, his bubbly personality seems to go as flat at Givenchy.
.
International Herald Tribune

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22-01-2004
  24
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Quote:
Chanel: Gallic to the core*
Suzy Menkes IHT* Wednesday, January 21, 2004

The American-French standoff has moved from the airwaves to the runways as two designers promoted Gallic gorgeousness on the haute couture runways on Tuesday.

Christian Lacroix called his spring collection of rococo ruffles and hand-painted dresses, worn with high chignons and bright hose, a "manifesto."

"It sounds pretentious, but we have to stand up for our culture and defend our individuality at this moment when France is in question," the designer said. Earlier in the day, Chanel's exquisite collection at the highest level of couture craftsmanship and French chic expressed the same spirit. "I want it to be very French in attitude - as only a foreigner can be," said Karl Lagerfeld, before sending out his models in the tented grounds of the historic Palais Bourbon Condé, which the designer said he had chosen to express the mood.

The two shows were yearning to distill the essence of haute couture, and it made for a fine moment for fashion - although not one that changed, or even challenged, the status quo.

Lagerfeld's show was refined, restrained, but also romantic in its froth of tulle spilling over clean lines. The palette of black and white, touched with face powder pink and a single splash of Chinese yellow, was quintessentially Coco. But in spite of its perfect ingredients and exceptional workmanship, this Chanel show was "vintage" only in the current meaning of the word: so lovely and so classic that it transcended time and place.

There is no arguing that Lagerfeld is the reigning monarch of reality couture. "It was just so beautiful," said the actress Kristin Scott Thomas, sitting beside singer Kylie Minogue.

The clothes were wearable and desirable: suits with easy-fit tweed jackets and tulle skirts, some hobbling the knees; or the inverse evening looks, when a ball of fluff rolled across the shoulders of a lean satin dress. Hairstyles were to match: small, androgynous heads with the fluffy stuff and wilder curls for the lean.

The designer is honest in offering at the elevated couture prices work that ready-to-wear factories could never replicate and clothes that are not gimmicky one-season wonders. Even on the runway, the delicacy of a tucked satin blouse or the intricacy of knitted tulle stood out as couture marvels. Chanel's own diamonds - cascades of stars or camellia finger rings - were the only decoration, with a Coco flat hat as a striking accessory. Lagerfeld had orchestrated a change of fashion pace, with an elongated torso that is a message of the season. There was just a hint of the 1920's, especially when an embroidered skirt had a linear art deco pattern. Now that Chanel has taken over the feather and embroidery supplies, it has an investment in putting them through their paces. Lagerfeld makes all that handwork seem light as a breeze, ribbons flowing, fringes dangling, paillettes winking. The show was an homage - maybe a fraction too reverential - to the glory of haute couture.

Lacroix's show was a master class in being himself. The designer still takes couture as a wild ride through color, pattern and decoration, but this show was totally under control. There were even - by a little stretch - wardrobe basics: a pants suit with just a froth of blouse and the sparkle of a spangled socklet that slipped under high-heeled sandals; or the stormy purple dress that seemed as simple: two panels of a dress tied with navy ribbon. Another gray satin dress just settled on the body like a cloud, while other more complex layers of lace and tulle still bared a leg or gave a sense of a body in movement.

Lacroix has learned that he can be an artist but not force the point. So although there were elaborate mixes of pattern and fabric, the pieces that stood out were strong but simple, from a khaki coat embroidered with birds through a white organza gown, sprayed fuchsia, with rose red velvet ties. That said, the show was as "simple" as a chef taking the finest ingredients, working on them for hours and coming up with a subtly flavored dish. And that is a French prerogative.

Against this Gallic background, Versace remains resolutely Italian.

Donatella Versace did a good solid job - although that is hardly the way to describe satin dresses pierced with flesh-revealing holes, skirts made out of strings of beads fringed like a lampshade. As the models came out, their elongated torsos emphasizing their bodies and their hairstyles the straight bottle blond of Versace herself, the line between the designer and her label seemed hard to divide.

The same look had even rubbed off on front row celebrity guest Christina Aguilera, who had a similar hairdo - but dyed black. The singer picked out a mauve beaded short dress from the parade of simple silhouettes with fancy workmanship.

This show at the Paris Ritz, where Gianni Versace traditionally showed this Atelier line, seemed entirely destined for the red carpet. Even the pants suit that opened the show was cinched with a sparkling belt and had exaggerated bell-bottom legs. It was all very Versace, which was the show's strength - and its limitation.

We both agree on Chanel.

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23-01-2004
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i thought over all this was areally boring season. witha few standotus.

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27-06-2005
  26
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Burberry's youthful military moment (IHT)
Suzy Menkes about first MIlan shows

Quote:

Burberry's youthful military moment
By Suzy Menkes International Herald Tribune

MONDAY, JUNE 27, 2005


MILAN A powerful Burberry show, taking the brand back to its military and aristocratic roots, ignited the first day of the Italian fashion season.

The designer Christopher Bailey brought into focus the overall theme of the summer 2006 Milan season. Youth - sunny, surly, smart or scruffy - is the subject of the new menswear, as Jil Sander's clean preppy sportswear was pitched against Dolce & Gabbana's new wave London rock 'n' roll.

But this was Burberry's moment as Bailey proved how he has got inside the soul of British Burberry and its heritage, yet can still wear that baggage of the past as lightly as the models wore their brass-buttoned trench coats.

"I wanted to go back to feel the essence of Burberry, that sense of aristocracy and the military - I felt we had been everywhere," said Bailey backstage. Yet although there were strong references to England in the 1960s and the aristocratic images of Lord Lichfield and Anthony Armstrong Jones, the future Lord Snowdon, Bailey never gets mired in retro fashion. In fact, he took Burberry to a place it has never been before - except perhaps for naval uniforms - with a passage of tailoring, pin sharp as it sculpted the waistline. The jackets looked both spivvy 1960s and right on for current fashion. Floppy floral scarves and tasselled loafers were elegant.

The color palette, too, was English in its restraint, as shrimp pink pants were paired with sage green tops and the plain V-neck sweaters over trellis patterned shirts moved the collection from grandfather's era to modern times.

London in the 1960s remains an enduring inspiration - even for those who have never lived its scene - then or now.

"We have always loved London, from the beginning," said Stefano Gabbana, explaining Dolce & Gabbana's look at the hip London band Baby Shambles and the cool and chaotic rocker Pete Doherty as a current take on their perennial rock 'n' roll themes. As the models swung out in their suits with a metallic sheen, in jeans with strategic rips, coin-dot or flower-embroidered shirts and state-of-the-art sneakers, it was hard to swallow the backstage claim from Gabbana that this was a theme of young celebs ("Brad Pitt maybe") hiding from the paparazzi.

As the cameras' flashes reflected from the mirrored runway and chandeliers twinkled, it all seemed more like a paparazzi fest. But Dolce & Gabbana, without exploring anything new, hit the right music world notes to turn the familiar into the current. Body-hugging suede jackets caressing the torso above the inevitable jeans is a look of the moment. So is the casual way the clothes, hats included, are pulled on. And just in case those dress-down guys want to rip off their Pepsi-patterned T-shirts and dress for the red carpet, the finale was pure Hollywood: knife-sharp suits mostly in white, always metallic, to make a worthy partner to the female glamour pusses at the awards ceremonies.

What was Raf Simons thinking as he sat front row at Jil Sander - the brand he will be designing from now on? Probably the same as everyone else: that the team had done a good job keeping the Sander spirit alive - but without either her sense of pristine sobriety nor an undercurrent of sly sexuality. That said, there were clothes in this preppy collection to like and wear, especially the polo shirts with striped collars, the new proportions of summer suits with pants cropped just over the knee and the lace-up shoes soft as moccasins in leather, canvas or mesh.

As ever with Sander, touching the clothes backstage brought a new dimension: a Prince of Wales check jacket in a new-generation polyester or a seersucker suit with dimpled stripes.

The problem was in melding American sportswear style with artsy effects. They included smudged prints that made shirts look as if they had sweat patches; or flower patterns that treated the shirts too much like a canvas. Simons - whether or not he follows in Sander's noble footprints - will bring his strong personal handwriting. And the word from Germany is that Sander herself is already planning a project that will bring her back into fashion on a different scale.

At Costume National, Ennio Capasa went the rock 'n' roll route, reliving the era when Elvis was King, snake hips were shaking and long hair was shocking. Capasa has a neat way of taking a theme and working it, so for last season's Rudolf Nureyev read 1960s Teds. They wore their hearts on their rolled-up shirtsleeves and as playing-card motifs on shirts. Their hair was suitably slicked and their jackets met drainpipe pants at mid-thigh. Updated as light nylon trench coats or with narrow-toed shoes done with finesse, the show seemed modern - not least in its bandannas tied into high-fashion wristbands. But for all its fun and studiously worked eccentricity, there is no way of recapturing the rebellious, pelvis-gyrating energy of the period.

Burberry's sweet/sad take on young boys in military clothes seemed the most profound look at youth in 2006.


Last edited by Lena; 27-06-2005 at 07:31 PM.
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27-06-2005
  27
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Nice article. I like what she says about about Burberry and Sander. I wonder what it is that she ment with

Quote:
And the word from Germany is that Sander herself is already planning a project that will bring her back into fashion on a different scale.
Or do we at tFS already know so :p
Anyway, thanks nqth for the article.

Oh, a bit OT, but do you notice that you posted the article twice in the original post

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27-06-2005
  28
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You are welcome, Mr-Dale, and thanks:-)
Yes. it is double because I pasted the article from IHT and forgot to chceck it:-)

It always come twice:-))

Quote:

Prada goes back to basics; for Versace, it's 'Miami nice'
By Suzy Menkes International Herald Tribune


TUESDAY, JUNE 28, 2005


In her fresh, clean-cut show and in her wise words, Miuccia Prada put into perspective the malaise pervading high fashion menswear, which other Italian designers have tried to face off with vivid color and graphic pattern for summer 2006.

"Fashion should become more egalitarian. I am not interested in dealing with a few sophisticated people," Prada said. "Crisscrossing everything is the main issue: the need to face the huge world and to appeal to new countries and new customers."

So for Prada, Monday's show was a stark return to basics: to the skinny silhouette, to fabrics treated with techno shine, to nylon work-wear, to hosiery-fine sweaters and to symbols to identify the label. And being Prada, with her penchant for a communist/populist aesthetic, that meant stars (but not necessarily red) printed on shirts, neckties or decorating the new must-have nylon backpack - along with hearts to put soul into a sober collection.

The result was a show of those perfectly judged and wearable clothes on which Prada built its empire. But the reprise did not include her much-copied brief coat, short boxy suits or sour colors. In fact, Prince of Wales tailoring was classic, and there was a wry sweetness to an aqua blue suit, to a dusty pink shirt or a moss green sweater. Pants with softening pleats offered a new cut.

Why is Prada so often ahead of the pack? Because she has an ability to invent new menswear classics as if they had always existed. After a few seasons of kooky effects, any piece of this show - and that includes the head-wrap hats - could have walked right out on silvered sneakers or smart leather shoes onto the Milan streets. It was fashion for the real world and for its future.

At Versace, where restraint is now the watchword, the designer Donatella took a bold step. And one front row guest was over the moon at the show, where the runway was a mosaic-tiled swimming pool and the backdrop was the company's Medusa head logo.

"I loved all the silk and I came here thinking to fill my closet," said the Grammy award-winning music star Usher. "But when I saw those beautiful women, I thought I should just buy all that."

His partner, Eishia Brightwell, glowed with anticipation, while Brooke Shields, her midriff bravely exposed to the mosquito-filled garden, took time out from appearing in "Chicago" in London to join the after-show dinner given by Donatella Versace.

The show was a homage to core Versace values of flash and pizazz - but done with style as Art Deco patterns (think Miami's South Beach architecture) and a finale of tropical swim shorts on hunky males. They could have been from Bruce Weber photographs of the earlier Gianni Versace era - or, as the program notes put it: "Miami Vice."

But the show was "Miami nice," if you discounted the female models with big hair and scanty clothing. Well-oiled torsos were to the fore, but so was subtle craftsmanship in the Deco-patterned shirts and polo tops, teamed with tailored pants. A brisk black-and-white palette was punctuated with strong shades. It was all very Versace, but also showed a clear vision. As Versace herself put it: "Looking back but bringing it to the future."

Gianfranco Ferre's message was pure white with a touch of gray and black, in a show that was the embodiment of a new strategy that focuses on the name "Ferre" and gives equal billing to couture, medium-priced lines and sportswear. The resulting show was clean, fresh and coherent. Drama appeared only for embroidered and crumpled silk evening jackets in oriental greens. Otherwise mauve, with blood orange leather shoes, were the only challenges to a neutral palette.

Playing with textures and tones of white, the parade started with a flourish: a white alligator jacket, followed by ostrich. White cotton pants were played off against parchment gauzy knits, or arcs of black traced the fitted silhouette of a sportier jacket. An "F" buckle on wide belt was a new logo. Ferre's shiny suits in metallic grays still look destined for shady people in sunny Mediterranean places. But this was a show that got to the architectural essence of Ferre, with only one peacock gesture: a grand beach robe.

Color - vivid primary shades - was the surprise element at Bottega Veneta, where even the classic vintage leather travel bags had stripes of yellow, green, red and blue round the girth. The same webbing strap came as belts, with their snazzy colors picked out for ties and handkerchiefs. Even the blunt-toed shoes came in four shades of antiqued leather.

"I really felt for spring colors after the austere and dark winter collection," said the designer Tomas Maier, who cited as his inspiration the color-field canvases of midcentury American painters. The hues seemed a bit rich for a house that prides itself on discreet elegance. But Maier's enthusiasm for contemporary art is genuine, and there were other graphic elements - especially the narrow cuts for jackets with shrunken seams.

The pervasive small jacket seemed minuscule at Neil Barrett, where cropped shorts on tailored suits reinforced the impression that the proportions were seen through Alice's Looking Glass. Barrett scored with his subversion of formal dress pieces: a tuxedo vest worn over a white shirt with a black scribble down the front; or dress shirts in denim, complete with frills and a jaunty bow tie.

Antonio Marras always has a cultural trigger for his poetic collections. From the Alexander Calder mobiles hanging over the runway through the bold, graphic patterns of modernist Italian painters like Lucio Fontana and including "Take Five" on the soundtrack, Marras was recreating a feeling of an era.

"Intellectuals in Milan in the 1960s," said Marras, who even put these unlikely heroes on T-shirts. The designer has a quirky vision, with its own codes, such as narrow pants and fresh white shirts, cut in a modern way to prevent this inventive collection from slipping into period costume.

At Vivienne Westwood this season's sea and fun-fair theme made for less tricksy clothes. Success stories included red gingham tablecloth shirts and striped jackets, but the so-called radical slogans "branded" and "propaganda" seemed oh-so-familiar!

Ozwald Boateng took his classic sharp-cut jackets and easy sportswear on to a predominantly white palette. He mixed peach with purple or a tan leather jacket with lemon yellow top. Familiar flashes of bright lining appeared under jackets.

There was no innovation here, but a bright and breezy show to challenge tough times.


Last edited by nqth; 27-06-2005 at 06:34 PM.
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04-07-2005
  29
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Suzy Menkes on Paris Men Shows
from iht.com

From Jazz Age to Jagger: Alive with the sound of music

By Suzy Menkes International Herald Tribune


MONDAY, JULY 4, 2005
PARIS While Bob Geldof rallies his rocker cohorts to make a political statement with Live8, fashion is also tuned in to the power of music.

There was John Galliano with a jazz band, colorful hobo buskers and a Hare Krishna group as part of his powerful menswear show that ended with the designer at the wheel of a car flagged "Route 66."

Mick Jagger's rubber lips appeared as a print in a Comme des Garçons rock 'n roll show. And from Latino accordion players through a full-blown orchestra, the Paris menswear shows over the weekend were alive with the sound of music.

Galliano started with the Jazz Age, which seems to throb through the current summer 2006 season. For the first time, this men's line packed a creative punch. Impeccable tailoring showed the grace and glamour of the past, yet the taut manliness of this millennium. Even the elderly New Orleans-style jazz band wore precise black suits or vests that wafted at the back in Galliano's signature newspaper print silk.

Then Galliano changed the tune as blues signaled Alabama hobos in intricate and colorful patchworked denim.

Another scenario featured hunky, grease-smudged garage mechanics mimicking the iconic Herb Ritts 1984 images of "Fred with Tires." Yet whether it was green velvet pants decorated with Olympic rings, flowers appliquéd on a khaki top or a severe black coat, there were strong silhouettes for jackets and pants.

"Romantic, poetic - the power of music - and it all started with Bojangles," said Galliano backstage where rock posters from the Sex Pistols to Nirvana showed his other musical history inspirations.

What did L'Wren Scott, Mick Jagger's partner, think of the suits that came out at Comme des Garçons smothered in the Rolling Stones' "lips"? Or the graffiti scribbles on jackets of the signatures of Jagger and Ronnie Wood?

"I thought it was very interesting - very Comme des Garçons ," Scott said with an enigmatic smile. And we have indeed been down this route before. When Comme's Rei Kawakubo said backstage that "rock is a symbol of energy and rebellion," it was inevitable to think back to her earlier, hyper-creative explorations of Punk.

This show was on the one note that came out as another graphic pattern on white tailoring. It produced jolly prints, exceptional footwear in gilded, elastic-sided boots and dynamic sportswear. Sweat pants were labeled "DNA" or "anti-oxidant" and lips and tongues tumbled over T-shirts. Maybe Kawakubo will surprise us (but not that much) by dressing Jagger for the next Rolling Stones tour. But a rebel yell?

Led Zeppelin was the rowdy accompaniment to Junya Watanabe's show, which took its inspiration from classic American workwear - and then subtly subverted it. Four-pocket overalls became versions of jackets and pants where pockets moved about with the cunning of a card sharp. Jackets and thigh-length coats might have two pockets at the front but the other two on the hips at the back. Pants were cut narrow, dropped at the crotch to create a lean but easy silhouette.

Working with different labels, Watanabe played with the logos, too, so that the Lacoste crocodile slithered from chest to backbone. Lacoste is one of several brands, including the workwear company Pointer with which Watanabe collaborates, giving a modernist spin to authentic brands. The result was a smart show with just the right elements of irony and subversion to make it fresh.

Re-mixes of the past require the same subtleties in fashion or in music. And Yohji Yamamoto's interpretation of American baseball classics was too literal - in its deep-sleeved shirts and ballooning pants and in its naïve "Take Me Out to the Ball Game" jingle on the soundtrack. There were fine Yohji classics, such as soft black coats gathered at the back. And there was some smart innovation in the way that zippers were used to open up jackets to create cut-out effects. The proportions of cropped pants to the large tops were also new. But all that was subsumed into - and often overwhelmed by - the overall theme. Vast striped tops, coin dot pants and cute kids wielding baseball bats made the show seem like a pastiche.

The cricket pitch and the tennis court were inspirations for Naoki Takizawa. He struck a carefree Jazz Age note with his Issey Miyake show of graphic jackets, their silhouettes traced as if by a pencil. This fashion from the playing fields of Eton brought a focus to the ubiquitous blazer. To the classic period piece and school uniform stripes, Takizawa added his own pencil traits, as an outline following the lapels, for the smudgy effects across shirt shoulders or as a tennis crest on the pocket.

The colorful pennants, with their medieval figures and symbols, made Dries Van Noten's show seem like a homage to his Belgian roots. But the music, commissioned from Ozark Henry and played by an orchestra, expanded the cultural reach - and so did the Spanish matador jackets, bull-ring red raincoat and guipure lace under blazers.

"I wanted proud men who love fashion - so I thought of Spain and of Salvador Dalí on the beach," said Van Noten. The collection was less surreal than it sounded with just a sarong effect for Dalí's sun lounger and the rest a judicious mix of elegant tailoring, hot color, Moorish patterns on sweaters and silhouettes with a proud nobility.

Kris Van Assche also tapped into a Hispanic look. The Belgian designer said that he was moved by the "innate elegance" of Argentine males and, with the voice of Maria Pilar filling the Paris music hall and a homage to Carlos Gardel, the father of tango, Van Assche struck a romantic note. The fashion story was in the pants, which were often too complex in their ability to ride up and down the leg. But other work on tailored pants, with small pleats at front and back, showed interesting cutting. Van Assche was effective with a sense of proportion, of drama and of color, such as green and purple.

The sound of music would not be complete without the clash and crash of rockers. With Axl Rose on the soundtrack and skulls and roses as prints, the Japanese company called Number (N)ine showed a lot of attitude. The show included the "F" word printed on suspenders and pants abandoned in favor of swim shorts worn with blazers. Like some rock music, there was a lot of noise about nothing very much.

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04-07-2005
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Dieselized!
By Suzy Menkes International Herald Tribune


The influence of Diesel on Martin Margiela, now that he is part of the Italian company, is turning the Belgian designer's work towards denim. All Margiela's codes of classic tailored pieces, treated to look vintage, are still in place. But the accent for the new collection is on jeans - even cut up into sandals, or worked with air-brushed leather. There were T-shirts with pen scribbles, shirts with water marks (looking suspiciously like sweat) and leather wallets heat-sensitive to finger marks. The details gave Margiela zest to casual wear. Among the dressier clothes, a paisley-patterned Lurex jacket and a vest with attached shirt tails were a neat fit with winkle picker shoes.



Last edited by nqth; 04-07-2005 at 10:51 AM.
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