This week, Milan has been working undercover. Thankfully, an umbrella is, in a way, a fashion woman’s dream: another accessory! Purple, plaid, and robin’s-egg blue versions popped on the street, as did a dramatic Minnie Mouse baseball cap and Miroslava Duma’s paisley headscarf (to keep the snow away from perfectly applied makeup). The precipitation has also inspired some spur-of-the-moment innovations, like using invitations and patent clutches as a car-to-show shelter. Last but not least, large hoods pulled down over the face added an air of mystery to the wearer’s ensemble.
The original festival frontierswomen were all about freedom: expressing peace and love with flowing dresses and tresses, liberating their bodies and minds, bearing their bellies and weaving daisy-chain jewelry. These days, it’s a slightly different story. Don’t let the fringe fool you—Coachella is high fashion. But that doesn’t mean it’s any less authentic. After all, what could be more liberating than Katy Perry in chandelier earrings, Rita Ora in a chic crop top, or Alessandra Ambrosio in pair of neon jean shorts? These women go afield in whatever they like. Talk about free spirits.
In London, it’s all about the coats. On day three of fashion week alone, Phil Oh spotted many species of toppers: the double-breasted overcoat, the fuzzy fur jacket, the tartan trench, the metallic slicker, and the leather moto-jacket, to name a few. Of course, you don’t need photographic training and a pair of super binoculars to spot these beauties—the world’s best outerwear-watching is only a click away!
Et, c’est la fin. If there’s one thing we can always count on in Paris, it’s the chic garçonnes who nail the boy-girl thing. And in the closing days of fashion week, women outside the shows did not disappoint. They seemed to take a cue from the immaculately tailored army at Saint Laurent, sporting menswear-inspired staples like blazers, button-downs, bouclé—and more than one wide-brimmed hat. So what’s the secret to gender play? A little touch of über-femininity—thinkHanne Gaby Odiele’s doll-like Comme des Garçons shorts or a hot pink Chloé iPhone case purse.
Traveling to the other side of the world for Fashion Week means you get to see a refreshing mix of faces and as many new twists on personal style as there are people in attendance. But the answer to the (inevitable) question, “What is she wearing?” is also sure to bring you into exciting unknown territory. Aussie designers like P.A.M., Josh Goot, and Dion Lee are catching eyes on the street in Sydney. Luckily for us, it’s 2013, and when something new is worn across the globe, we get to lust after it the same day.
It’s le fin of the collections season but for those who can’t bear to see it end, here is the final installment of our “Vogue’s View” series in which we go behind the scenes to bring you exclusive insider photos of everything that happened during fall 2013 Fashion Month. FromChanel’s global behemoth of a show to Saint Laurent’s surprise homage to grunge, see the best moments in our slideshow above.
Bordeaux-stained lips aren’t enough for the Anthony Vaccarello girl—a more-is-more bombshell who hits her stride after dark. “She’s powerful,” said makeup artist Tom Pecheux backstage at the designer’s fall show, where the sight of major models Isabeli Fontana, Anna Selezneva, and Liu Wen milling about the majestic rooms of the Hôtel Salomon de Rothschild drove his point home. So after painting a rich wine-colored pigment—a mixture of Estée Lauder Pure Color Long Lasting Lipstick in Plum Couture and the company’s forthcoming Pure Color Vivid Shine Lipstick in Hot Lava—onto models’ lips with a brush, he decided that their eyes needed a hazy wash of the color, too. “It’s done in a soft way,” he said of blending a bit of that same creamy Plum Couture lip color around her lids, before going over it with a matching metallic powder shadow.
Paired with an equally dark dark manicure that featured a glittering half moon-shaped arc of pewter color at the base—and backstage hairstylist Anthony Turner’s “messy, disheveled, morning after” knots—the effect was seriously sexy. As Pecheux put it: “Sometimes it’s good to toughen up.”
There was a time when it was a skinny girl’s world and a slender look always won. But gone are the days when fashion was restricted to the skinny and petite. The world is getting smaller but people are getting bigger. According to the Centre for Disease Control and Prevention, more than one-third of American adults are obese or overweight and one-third makes good enough population for designers and retailers to their needs. Plus size fashion industry in the US has reached a large magnitude.
New York, Chicago, Atlanta and Los Angeles are some cities that have hosted successful plus size fashion events in the past years. UK is also following the same path and hosted its first ever plus size fashion show in London in the year 2012. India, however, is lagging behind as compared to other countries. The market for plus size apparel is increasing but it is still not at par with other countries. The size and frame of the average person has increased through the years due to changing food habits and atmosphere. In some case, this has also lead to obesity which has pushed people to turn their head towards plus size fashion.
Stockings are the new fashion statement of the millennium. Pair it up with anything like skirts, tunics, dresses and add a magic touch to your personality. They come in various colors, prints and fabrics. Stockings with lycra are always well fitted and easy to slip on. A large variety is available, from sheer stockings to glossy or classic stockings, and even funky opaque stockings. Enhance your legs, with stockings decorated with bright stones, lace, bows or zippers even ripped and look trendy.
Stocking have been in the fashion scene since 1589. An English churchman Rev. William Lee invented the first knitting machine. Silk stockings were worn to protect from cold. Till the end of 18th century even men used to wear silk stockings. With the invention of ‘Dupont Nylon’ fibre, the dominance of silk stockings faded away and Nylon stockings came in vogue after World War II. Stockings are back with a bang in the 21st century and have become indispensable part of woman’s wardrobe to fire up their style quotient.
For the ritual event this year, a new siren song will be calling to turn the red-carpet jewelry green.
On Friday, Chopard, the sculptor of the Palme d’Or, or Golden Palm, trophy for the festival winners, plans to announce a groundbreaking partnership with the Alliance for Responsible Mining, ARM, an organization that works to repair environments damaged by gold mining and helps small-scale miners sell their metal through a fair-trade certification program.
Through the partnership, Chopard will get its gold from small mines in Colombia and Ecuador.
The crusade for “green” gold — inspired by the campaign for gemstone traceability to fight the trade in so-called blood diamonds in the 1990s — is one of many environmental causes espoused by Livia Firth, co-founder of Eco-Age, a business consultancy and wife of the actor Colin Firth.
“With Chopard actively working on the community mining philanthropic program in South America, we can help transform the lives of thousands of people,” said Ms. Firth, who introduced the jeweler to the program. “It was a joint idea. I met Chopard last year at the Oscars.”
“They are a small and serious company and have had such a long history with Cannes,” Ms. Firth added, referring to Chopard’s 15-year collaboration with the festival, starting in 1998.
Caroline Scheufele, co-president and artistic director of Chopard, readily took up Ms. Firth’s challenge to make its gold supply chain as transparent as the origin of its diamonds — already officially certified as conflict-free. Ms. Scheufele said she intended to visit the gold mines personally.
“It’s important that people know where their jewels come from, so let’s start at the source,” she said.
Appropriately for a feel-good celebration, the high jewelry red-carpet collection that Chopard is unveiling this year at Cannes is dedicated to the theme of love. The collection, 66 pieces — in honor of the 66th Cannes Film Festival — is led by a three-dimensional, bejeweled flower ring of rubies, emeralds and colored diamonds set in white gold.
To add to the theme, an “In Love with Cinema” photo exhibition — including film kisses by Ingrid Bergman and Cary Grant in “Notorious,” and Sharon Stone and Michael Douglas in “Basic Instinct” — will be shown in the Hôtel Martinez on the seaside promenade, the Croisette. Even the Palme d’Or trophy itself has a “love” slant: an 18-karat gold stem, with a small heart at the base.
Ms. Scheufele has exceptional memories of Cannes: walking off with the original golden palm tucked under her arm, and starting to improve on its “run over by a tire” look, or “Elizabeth Taylor showing me her jewelry with her little dog jumping all over it.”
But she is also smart enough to realize that beyond the glamour of the celebrity circus, the issues of ecology and transparency, raised by Ms. Firth, are increasingly of interest to thoughtful customers. Ms. Scheufele’s planned announcement this week is designed as a wake-up call to the jewelry industry.
Meanwhile, a rising Hollywood star is supporting another good-practice initiative in the jewelry world.
Mila Kunis, who won international recognition for her role in “Black Swan,” has become an ambassador for Gemfields, a mining and marketing company in Zambia, with a mission to be the world’s leading producer of ethically sourced and rare colored gemstones.
“I’ve loved wearing their pieces on the red carpet because they are all unique and they stand for Gemfields’ mission of responsible sourcing,” Ms. Kunis said at the brand’s global introduction in London in March, after visiting Zambia to see the company in operation.
“While in Africa, I learned that the entire journey that each Gemfields stone takes is carefully considered and that the local communities where its mines are located are held in the highest regard,” she said.
Ian Harebottle, the chief executive of Gemfields, reinforced the message at the London event that the company was “fully committed to ethics, transparency and the sustainable development of the communities in which we operate.”
Ms. Kunis has been photographed by Mario Sorrenti for the Gemfields magazine, wearing a lace-collar style emerald necklace from Fabergé and a Mozambique ruby ring and earrings.
At the London opening, there was also a display of jewels from British designers. They included Shaun Leane’s tusk-shaped emerald earrings, Solange Azagury-Partridge’s Mozambique pear-shaped ruby earrings and Stephen Webster’s complex emerald and white-gold pendant.
Can the stars come out at night to promote a cause so dear to the heart of Ms. Firth and other caring ambassadors in the movie world? It still seems like a giant step from the flashy Cannes red carpet to thoughtful, eco-conscious jewelry activists. But the green message spelled out in gold and diamonds would make the jewels as beautiful on the inside as on the red-carpet steps.