Fashion truly an art?!

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One of the oldest Italian fashion house’s created history this week, by taking over the arcades of Louvre, and running the first ever fashion show in the 900-year old world famous building.

Photo courtesy of elitedaily.com

This is one event that captured my attention, as the debate of weather fashion is an art has been going on since centuries; and this was the perfect answer to it, portrayed in the most unbelievably aesthetic manner. The 140 metres long runway in the temple of fine art was by far, the longest for a Paris show.  The audience included Hollywood celebrities Hillary Swank, Frieda Pinto and Fan Bing Bing from China, who were given a private tour of the exhibition before commencing the show.

Photo courtesy of media3.onsugar.com

Photo courtesy of dailymail.co.uk

The fashion house unveiled their latest collection that Giornetti designed in shades of pale stone, to keep the palette in coherence with the Louvre and Paris. Slouchy leather trousers with flat boots clearly brought out the Parisian aesthetic and then there were more Italian mini dresses formed major part of the clothes collection. The crochet short dresses definitely were my favorite and without a doubt the highlight of the show were the heritage of the brand, gladiator sandals, and thigh high boots in snakeskin with various embellishments.

Photo Courtesy of – msnbcmedia.msn.com

Photo Courtesy of – 2.bp.blogspot.com

Photo Courtesy of – harpersbazaar.co.uk

The brand Salvatore Ferragamo, is an 84-year old fashion house, that has always been associated with art and culture.  It is also considered the first fashion house to establish a link between celebrities and fashion. It is said that screen siren Marilyn Monroe and Greta Grabo were pivotal in bringing a mere shoe repair shop from California to a leather star shoemaker.

Marilyn Monroe shoes at the Salvatore Ferragamo Museum. Photo Courtesy of – 3.bp.blogspot.com

At the event, Ferragamo’s creative director, Massimilanio Giornetti, explained to the audience the early links between Leonardo Da Vinci and Salvatore Ferragamo, and that the latter also studied the anatomy of feet to understand the function of the shoe and appearance and make sure he produced something that was wearable. The brand’s motto that makes it so successful, is “beauty with functionality”.

Photo Courtesy of – loft22.files.wordpress.com

Salvatore Ferragamo has been one of my favorite brands for shoes and bags! I can truly vouch for the confidence and faith, that all us fans across the globe have in the groundbreaking future of this iconic fashion house.  This magnificent event is just the beginning of their cutting-edge potential.

Photo Courtesy of efashiontrend.net

Photo Courtesy of fashionweekdaily.com

 

ZYEM Lifestyle Brand – by Monique Glover

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At the young age of 9, Monique Glover, CEO/Designer of ZYEM, knew that she wanted to become a fashion designer. It all began with a PBS special she happened to be watching about an African man who designed clothing for a prince. She was immediately intrigued with the colorful illustrations, the beautifully draped pieces in elaborate fabrics. Monique knew at that very moment she wanted to create these same beautiful pieces one day. She soon began on her journey of pursuing that goal, while at the Laguardia High School of Music & Art and Performing Arts she was able to build on her natural skills of drawing and creativity. Furthering her education in the arts she attended Pratt Institute for Fashion Design, where she realized that learning about fashion was more than drawing something cool, it was about executing wearable art.

After 12 years in the fashion industry, designing for various brands, traveling to Europe, Hong Kong and India, studying art and observing NYC’s pop culture; Monique’s “PBS special” dreams were becoming a reality. In 2011, she launched a Lifestyle Brand named after her little prince, her son Zyem (which means leader). ZYEM is a Brooklyn, NY based company creating garments that are fit for kings and queens, promoting a Continue Reading

Innovative Knitwear Designs – Twisted Angle

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British Fashion Designer Victoria (Vicky) Nicholls, was a young child when she first discovered her love personal love for fashion. Her Grandmother’s talent of knitting items for her toys and stuffed animals also sparked her interest in the creative world of knitting. Later while attending University, she had the opportunity to specialize in an area of fashion design, and she chose Knitwear. While working on her fashion degree, Vicky learned how to work on both domestic and industrial knitting machines, which enhanced her design capabilities. Soon she picked up hand knitting again and began teaching herself how to make creative fashion patterns. This was not any easy fete, as there was not as much information as there is now on how to create fashion forward hand knitted patterns or fashion trends.

After working in the fashion industry as a Knitwear Designer for ten years, Vicky found herself reignited with the passion she had in school to create hand knitwear with catwalk inspirations of her own and share that passion with people just like her. Her new business idea was to give knitwear students, independent designers, etc. a place where they could easily access knitwear trends and knitwear patterns they could create for themselves. At the same time she wanted to create a platform for them to learn and share information with other knitwear lovers. So, with all of her knitwear design knowledge, hand and machine knitting skills, and trend research experience, she has created a membership based website portal for all things “knitty fashion” titled Twisted Angle!

Vicky talked with Vitamin F about early stages as a young fashion drama queen, not leaving the house without her Dior Poison perfume, how in her eyes Galliano and McQueen are amazing designers, her hush hush private design work for her clients for AW13, what she believes Liv Tyler, Jessie J and Kate Winslet have in common and Continue Reading

Fashion Industry Highlight- The Feathered Head

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The wedding items that are most important (next to the dress, of course), are the bridal accessories! Whether you are a “traditional bride” or “fashionista bride”, the type of accessories you choose will help complete your “bridal style”.

This bridal accessories selection process was the inspiration that made Andie Cohen-Healy create her company, The Feathered Head. A unique and creative company that offers beautiful one-of-a-kind feathered headpieces for brides and party-goers, often incorporating vintage jewelry and other media. The story of The Feathered Head all began when Andie was preparing for her own wedding and she didn’t want the “cookie-cutter” type of bridal accessories, but instead wanted to that would make her stand out and reflect her personality. She then also thought about the actual ceremony and how lots of pet owners incorporate their various animals into the wedding, but the only thing is, Andie’s pets are chickens! Needing to find a way to incorporate her chickens, and figure out a unique bridal-wear piece, she had the great idea to fashion her hens beautiful, colorful plumes into a bridal head piece in place of a veil. When she received so many compliments on her one-of-a-kind headpiece, she created more pieces and that was the start of her business.

In addition to her high-end wedding and cocktail fascinators, headbands, hats, veils and clips, Andie has recently introduced other accessories including feathered boutonnieres and a few handbags. Just last year one of her amazing pieces was featured on The Today Show during the coverage of the Royal Wedding!

Clips of Lori Hat on Today show - Click here to watch the segment!

With so many options to choose from, it was hard to decide which items to cover in this article! Since wedding season is almost amongst us, I think that if I were styling a bride for her wedding Continue Reading

The Met Gala -Top Four Themes of the Red Carpet!

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I know I may be late with this post, and by now you probably have seen all of the red carpet images from “the fashion industry’s big night out” plasters throughout the internet. There are various blog posts on all the looks, best and worst dressed lists, the scandal behind Kim K’s non-invite, and how great the exhibit is in general. Even with all that said, now that the exhibit is open to the public I still wanted to give my two cents. 😉

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Fashion Industry Feature- LIM

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“Simple design aesthetics, with distinctive handmade details, and mixtures of textures”. That is how fashion designer Barbara Levi defines her company LIM.

Barbara studied fashion design at the University of Buenos Aires, and later began working as a stylist and costume designer. She was designing various collections for a company that produced lines sold in Japan and the U.S.A, when she realized her talent was not truly valued. She knew things had to change and embarked on a new venture immediately, the next day to be exact! With her own savings and support from a loving family, LIM was born.

Based, designed and produced in Argentina; LIM started in 2010 and is now sold at different multi-brand boutiques. Barbara is inspired by both decades of the 20’s and 50’s, as well as her life experiences. By traveling to other countries and experiencing different cultures, she has been inspired by different ways of life. Most recently, her collections are also being sold in Los Angeles and San Francisco. Barbara hopes to continue to increase the exposure of LIM and to expand globally.

 

LIM Collections are very versatile as they can be worn, day, night or on vacation. There is something for every Continue Reading

True Artistic Style- Lauren Luna

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Lauren Luna is a professional fine artist with a true passion for her artistry as well as having a great eye for style.  She not only creates because she loves it, but also because it is what she was born to do. A few weeks ago I had the pleasure of chatting with this amazingly talented,(and very busy) woman who continues to make her mark within the fine art and fashion industries. I was very impressed that she was able to conduct a great interview all while leaving work, running errands and then taking her beloved English Bulldog for a nice walk. We chatted about her life, her inspirations, her brands and her future.

VF: Describe yourself using 4 words…

LL: Busy..Umm.. Busy, Busy and Busy… (Laughs)..Ok well honestly I would have to say.. definitely Busy, and then Ambitious, Determined and Creative

VF: How do you define your personal style?

LL: Well there’s really no real easy answer to that. I’m very picky with what I wear, and I don’t want to wear anything just because it is in my size. I like to wear heels, but I don’t like the fact that your feet get so uncomfortable, I want to be able to walk, you know? I also don’t like “too too” flat flats, because then your feet can hurt with those as well. (Laughs) Um, I like to be comfortable, but I also like to be cute.

VF: So, your style is “Comfortable & Cute”?

LL: Yeah!

VF: When did you fall in love with art?

LL: Oh at a very, very young age…it’s just always been something that I have really been very interested in. My earliest memory was, I would say when I was about 5, and I went to the local rec center, and had art classes.

VF: So when people asked you what you wanted to be when you grew up, what would you say?

LL: Oh every time it was always “an artist”.

VF: You have several degrees in painting, how long have you been a professional fine artist?

LL: Right after graduation from Undergrad, but I would say even before then, during my program I was actively showing. So I guess that would still be considered “professional” even though I was in school. My first show was in 97’ or 98’.

VF: What art mediums do you work with? Which is your favorite?

Shoe Fetish Medium: Encaustic, rhinestone, mylar, and handpulled linoprint

LL: Preferred- oil or acrylics on canvas. I did take a Printmaking class last year, and I really enjoyed using the different things that I learned from that class and applying it to my pieces. I think you said that you had seen my picture I tweeted of several different shoe art pieces titled “Here’s my shoes”? Well that was done through a printmaking technique. I really enjoy doing that, more so to the fact that it’s commercial, it’s easy to sell, and I can make a whole bunch of prints, minus clean up time, I can do it a whole lot faster than I can do one painting. Also to clarify, each one of the prints are done by hand, but because I can make multiples of it, that’s why it’s called a “print”. The process is similar to the old school book making, but without the steamroller print bed. It allows me to combine my commercial art- in the sense of “shoe art” work, and my fine art, which allows me to create my pieces much faster..

VF: Who do you admire, or who inspires you within the art/fashion world (dead or alive)?

LL: Well within the fashion world that is a really easy answer… I Continue Reading

Fashion Star… A genius concept!

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What a fresh show concept! Fashion Star not only showcases designers in its new take on fashion reality television, it includes great music, a live audience and runway presentation! Each week the designers receive a new focus or theme that they and their pattern makers/seamstresses work to complete. These new looks sold at SAKS, Macy’s or H&M,  If the designer has no offer/buy they are eligible for elimination. The twist is that the buyers decide who will be sent home and the mentors decide who to save each week!
This show makes so much sense because a lot of designers do not get the exposure necessary for a successful line, plus they usually don’t have the funds to get it going.. This show gives them both!

 

Background Synopsis of 11 out of the 14 designers who were highlighted in the shows premiere:

Orly 26, NYC -bartender who wants to be a designer, tuc + wes her brand of convertible pieces, “cut + sew backwards”, signature look fitted semi- high waisted skirt with zipper application, basically a two- fer skirt. Sold to Saks

Available Now at SAKS

 

Edmond 32, GA – barber stylist and designer, likes to design dresses that are Studio 54 meets 2012, signature look is a bubble skirt cocktail dress. Sold to Macy’s

Available Now at Macy's

Oscar 37, TX – grew up in El Salvador with hard past, wears colorful hats and scarves, describes his designs as “happy orgy of colorful things”, signature look is butterfly dress. Had no offers
Nikki 43, FL – has a line of swimwear and resort wear that is 3 years old, signature look is the kimono caftan. Sold to Macy’s

Available Now at Macy's

Nicholas 38, CA – Australian model turned designer of menswear, does not take criticism well, signature look is the motorcycle jacket. Had no offers

Barbara 55, IL – mother of 3, breast cancer survivor, used to work in corporate America and sold her designs during breaks at work, quit to become full time designer, signature look is a skirt and top. Had no offers
Sarah 31, GA – self taught, mother passed away and inspires her to pursue this, signature look is a sexy shift dress. Sold to H&M

Available at H&M

Ross 27, TX – describes himself as a straight male who likes to hunt and fish, a bow tie wearing southern gent, he studied under great tailors, makes his own patterns and sews, signature look is tailored wide leg pants. Had no offersLizzie 41, WA – former project manager at Microsoft, mother of 2, bought sewing machines from craiglist looking to make clothes she couldn’t find in stores, signature look is asymmetrical tunics and dresses. Sold to Macy’s

Available NOW at Macy's

 Kara 38, NY – former elementary school teacher, androgynous and deconstruction designer, likes to deconstruct garments and create accessory pieces, signature look is a collar, stand and tie combo accessory. Had no offers
Nzimiro 28, NY – grew up in Detroit with Nigerian background of importance of success, designer of menswear, signature look is a functional blazer or sports jacket. Sold to H&M

Available at H&M

Nicholas, Oscar and Kara were in the elimination, Oscar was saved by mentors and Nicholas was sent home by the buyers

 

 The following are my favorite quotes of the night:

“Well fashion is a reinvention of itself, yes I’ve seen it before and you’ve seen it before, but you’ve never seen it with my label..right!” -Oscar to John Varvatos
“Why would you put those shorts with that leather jacket” – Jessica Simpson on Nicholas’s last look
“It’s hard to understand the girls advice on men’s fashion” – Nicholas reply to the mentors
“As a designer, sometimes you need to pull back and say is this saleable? Is this wearable?” – Caprice Willard, for Macy’s on Barbara’s looks
“Those pants were all sorts of ‘no’.. You can say it” – Nicole Richie on Ross’s pants
“You’re so cute with your bow tie and suit, I would have loved that for a woman… A sexy version of you” -Nicole Richie to Ross

Black (Fashion) History Moment- Prince

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Prince (born Prince Rogers Nelson; June 7, 1958) is an American singer, songwriter, musician, and actor. Prince has produced ten platinum albums and thirty Top 40 singles during his career. Prince founded his own recording studio and label; writing, self-producing and playing most, or all, of the instruments on his recordings.

Cover of Prince -The Hits/ B side LP 1993 photo courtesy of thecoverlovers.blogspot.com

From the beginning of his career, Prince captivated audiences vocally as well as with his unique and expressive approach to fashion, makeup and hairstyles. Although he has such a petite frame and stature and introverted personality (when not performing), Prince is a powerhouse of true raw entertainment that demands your attention. Along with his “one of a kind” talent, he has also never been afraid to push the envelope of androgyny and sex appeal for both genders with his fashion.

In October 1979, Prince released a self-titled album, Prince, which was No.4 on the Billboard Top R&B/Black Albums charts, and No.22 on the Billboard 200, going platinum. It contained two R&B hits: “Why You Wanna Treat Me So Bad?” and “I Wanna Be Your Lover”. Prince performed both these songs on January 26, 1980 on American Bandstand. On this album, Prince used Ecnirp Music – BMI.

 

From full face of makeup, to ruffled shirts, tight legging like pants, lace outfits, shoulder-pad filled colorful suits, high-waisted pants and bolero style jackets, silky or glitter ensembles as well as strutting his stuff up and down with platform and wedge heel boots and shoes…with his greatest accessory at times being his guitar. Over the years, we have seen it all!

"The Prince of Ruffles" photo courtesy of colinmcdowell.com

1988 Lovesexy album cover

In late 1982, Prince released a double album, 1999, which sold over three million copies. Prince’s “Little Red Corvette” was one of the first two videos by a black artist played in heavy rotation on MTV, along with Michael Jackson’s “Billie Jean”. Prince’s 1984 album Purple Rain sold more than thirteen million copies in the U.S. and spent twenty-four consecutive weeks at No.1 on the Billboard 200 chart. The film of the same name won an Academy Award and grossed more than $80 million in the U.S.

Images of the famous Purple Rain look and "Purple Trench Coat" for movie poster. Photos courtesy of jezebel.com, prince.org and classyhipinspiredculture.wordpress.com

 

Now in more recent years Prince has expressed to be a more mellow artist, but still gives us interesting fashion to observe.

Prince- The Hits/B side LP 1993 images photos courtesy of thecoverlovers.blogspot.com

Photo courtesy of hiphop.popcrunch.com

Photo courtesy of misexpose.com

Prince performing last Spring 2011 at Madison Square Garden photo courtesy of makho-ndlovu.blogspot.com

 

As well as being a fashion icon he also is an avid fashion week attendee.. Not surprised!

Prince performed at the performing at Matthew Williamson Fashion Show for 2008 Spring/Summer

Prince in Chanel on way to Paris Fashion week show - 2009 photo courtesy of rodonline.tyepad.com

 

Paris Fashion Week Spring/Summer 2010 Ready To Wear - Yves Saint Laurent

 

Prince continues to make amazing music, has finally embraced digital music and that part of the industry. He has been given many honors and awards in during his career thus far and most recently he was awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award by BET in 2010 and was also listed in TIME magazine’s 2010 annual ranking of the “100 Most Influential People in the World”.

Photos courtesy of thebuzzinthecity.com and in.reuters.com

 

What are your favorite Prince memories or fashion moments? Share your comments below 🙂

The Iconic Style of an Iconic Voice…

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More than just an iconic voice, Whitney Houston had iconic style!

From her first magazine cover to her first music video to her last concert tour.. she had our attention. Whitney proved her modeling capabilities at a young age, and was soon sought after as the go to teen model of her time. She made history as she was the first Black American to grace the cover of Seventeen magazine in 1986.

Photo courtesy of huffingtonpost.com

 

Photo courtesy of mediagallery.usatoday.com

 

Photo courtesy of stylepoohbahs.wordpresscom

 

With her debut video “I wanna dance with somebody”, she was a “pop color” diva wearing neon hue makeup, brightly colored accessories and big hair! During the same video she looked like she stepped into the future with a leather jacket, layered scarf and jeans that could be worn today. Big metallic ribbon, animal print and brightly colored hair bows were her staple hair piece in this video as well as in “How will I know”.

 

Full on 80s bright in "I wanna dance with Somebody"

 

 

Leopard print headscarf, blue eye shadow, big hair - "I wanna dance with somebody"

 

 

Another clip from "I wanna dance with somebody" that could easily be worn today!

 

Metallic ribbon bow with shimmery dress and gloves - "How will I know?"

 

 

Throughout her career she had a love for leather jackets, gloves, tight jeans, beautiful fitted dresses and was not afraid to stand out!

Leather blazers, black ensembles and fringe - In videos "So Emotional" and "The greatest Love of all"

More leather jackets and black ensembles during her "Nothing but Love Tour" in 2010

On tour in Tokyo

Shades of White- fitted dresses long and short, blazer with gold and white shimmer tank, and flowy top with white underlay and black decorative detail.

Shiny gold, Sparkle and Glitter, Animal print dress and shrug

In a beautiful Brown and Bronze tone sparkle and shimmer dusted mermaid gown for the 2010 BET Honors Awards

 

Whitney looked beautiful than ever in this Multi-tonal and ombre dress for the 51st Grammy Awards

Fun black sparkle dress for the last Clive Davis Pre-Grammy Party she would ever attend in 2011.

Her final red carpet with Bobbi Kristina for her BFF Kelly Price's Pre-Grammy Party - "For the Love of R&B", three days before her untimely death.

 

Although we have lost a The voice, The Icon and The fashion, I’m sure there will be a mini-revival of the best of Whitney yet to come when “Sparkle” is released in August!!