Monday, 30 December 2013

Fashion news

Friends Ebonnie Masini-Thomson and Natasha Chernov Homann were shopping together for pyjamas when the idea for a business was born.

"There was a lot out there that was sexy or with cute ducks, teddy bears and clouds, but we didn't want that," said Masini-Thomson. "We wanted something sophisticated and fashion-forward, so we decided to do it ourselves."
A Kris Van Assche running shoe available at Sneakerboy.

Launched four weeks ago, luxury sleepwear brand Masini & Chern produces traditional pyjamas for men and women that can be worn on the streets as well as between the sheets.

The PJs, priced from $175 to $230 a pair, are already attracting significant interest. Actress Phoebe Tonkin received more than 50,000 likes when she posted a picture of herself in a striped pair on Instagram, and the Beverly Hills Hotel in Los Angeles has requested palm print pairs for its VIP clients that will come with monogrammed cuffs.

"The reaction has been really great, so we're planning a trip to Los Angeles in the new year and we'll start wholesaling to various fashion and lifestyle boutiques," said Masini-Thomson.

Thursday, 26 December 2013

'American Hustle' a portrait of swank '70s fashion

LOS ANGELES (AP) -- From Christian Bale's burgundy velour blazer to Amy Adams' plunging sequin halter dress, "American Hustle" is a cinematic romp through the over-the-top styles of the 1970s.

Set in New York and New Jersey in 1978, the film tells the story of a pair of con artists (Bale and Adams) forced to work for a cocky FBI agent (Bradley Cooper) bent on bringing down powerbrokers and politicians. This decadent world of power, crime and big money comes to life through ostentatious fashions and outrageous hairdos. All the characters are reinventing themselves, and it shows in their clothes.

"They had ideas, they lived large and they took risks," costume designer Michael Wilkinson said of the '70s styles that inspired his designs. "Clothes were less structured, had less underpinnings -- it was like people didn't give a damn."

Though the Australian-born Wilkinson said his childhood was drenched in American pop culture, "I approached this as a research project, just like you would study about the Greek ruins or outer galaxy."

He scoured Cosmopolitan magazine, along with advertisements, movies and TV shows of the era. "Goodfellas" and "Atlantic City" were particularly influential films.

"And 'Saturday Night Fever' from 1977," Wilkinson added. "(That) had the most pertinence to Bradley Cooper's character. He's a guy from the Bronx, and he lived life as a black-and-white moral shooter working for the FBI, and wears a cheap polyester suit that doesn't fit him so well."

The character ups his fashion game after meeting the dapper con-couple.

"He ends up in a silk shirt and silk scarf, which are pop-culture references," Wilkinson said. "And then he wears a leather jacket to the FBI."

The designer relished in Halston's vintage vault, to which he was granted access for the film, and he dressed Adams in authentic pieces from the '70s.

"The lines (of clothing silhouettes) of the late '70s, with designers like Halston, were reinventing the wardrobe of women," he said. "It was about being comfortable in your skin and walking tall."

Hair is so prominent in "American Hustle," it's practically another character. Lead hairstylist Kathrine Gordon studied old issues of Playboy and high-school yearbooks from the '70s for inspiration.

She and Bale worked together to create his character's elaborate comb-over, complete with fuzzy, glue-on hairpiece. The film opens with a scene of its careful construction.

"I came up with this idea to stuff it," Gordon said of the comb-over she cut into Bale's real hair. "And then (director) David (O'Russell) rewrote the script, and I taught Christian how to do it on camera."

Adams wears styles reminiscent of disco parties, Studio 54 and "the Breck girl" ads of the era. Jeremy Renner, who plays a New Jersey politician, has a fluffy bouffant. Jennifer Lawrence, an unhappy wife in the film, wears bouncy, sex-kitten updos whether she's going out or not. And Cooper rocks a tight perm: He's shown wearing curling rods in one scene.

Wilkinson, whose film credits include "Man of Steel," ''Tron: Legacy" and "The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn, Part II," said he especially loved playing with fabrics, colors and prints for Bale's charming con-man.

"I'm really proud of Christian Bale," the designer said. "It shows the possibility of an expression of personality in menswear. He explores his character in his clothes and he's a man of the world. He mixes prints

Friday, 20 December 2013

Are Fake Handbags Going Extinct? This Technology Makes It Possible

Even if you're a total expert on the Louis Vuitton linings and Chanel hardware, it can still be difficult to spot a fake handbag. So, the best way to keep track of the counterfeit goods that flood e-commerce sites and, yes, Canal Street? Make branding part of a carryall's DNA. Literally.

This is the technology currently in the works by Juan Hinestroza, a Cornell textile scientist, as well as Dr. Ken Kuno of the University of Notre Dame. “You can make signatures by coating individual cotton fibers [with nanoparticles of metal], like a barcode,” Kuno told Popular Science, explaining how their new marking system will only be trackable by metallic detectors. While the scientists have claimed that they're currently working with popular handbag brands, they haven't revealed which ones in particular.

Though there are other, similar DNA-like systems in place, this newest one also claims to be the easiest to use. Click over to read more about the new invention that could preserve the integrity of our favorite fashion labels forever. For real. (Popular Science)

Wednesday, 18 December 2013

Supremebeing Menswear: AW13 Collection

British streetwear label Supremebeing has released their AW13 collection of vibrant and colourful casual basics with an edge. The label formed back in 1999 with a goal to fuse together the passions of street culture, art, music and fashion – and this latest collection certainly does that.

The collection has a vintage Americana vibe, with references to the current varsity/collegiate trend throughout. Pieces fuse together 1950s style with 1960s utility and military influences to create clothes that look good and actually serve a purpose. Pattern and texture is a prominent feature of the collection, ensuring it remains seasonally-appropriate and adding a welcome touch of character to the overall aesthetic.

Though colour features heavily, including bold colour pops that you wouldn’t traditionally associate with autumn/winter, Supremebeing have not forgotten Britain’s notorious weather, with a wide selection of outerwear in the form of parkas, hunting gilets & jacket liners taking centre stage.

A collection highlight is the ‘Guru’ olive nylon jacket, which features a new take on the camo trend. The brand’s Pine Camo print is based on the 1965 Strichmuster (Dash Print) used by the SWAPO, South West Africa People’s Organisation, in their fight against South African Apartheid. Reworked by the label, the graphic dashes have been super-sized in tonal colours. The jacket is also available in a navy/yellow two-tone colour way that offers more of a varsity appeal – a nice alternative if camo/military isn’t for you.

Another favourite, and a great way to inject some colour into our dreary winter months, is the ‘Billet’ short. The button-up long sleeve shirt makes use of colour-blocking to great effect, incorporating blocks of red, yellow and navy, along with contrasting collar and pocket details, within the design. It’s a piece that cannot fail to make a statement.

Overall, the collection is a strong mix of everyday pieces with a down to earth, youthful edge, in a vibrant colour palette that is versatile enough to integrate with existing wardrobe staples.

Monday, 16 December 2013

Style File: Going down the Tube - London Underground inspired clothing called Roundel

Any mod worth their mop top knows what a roundel is – the circular insignia

often to be found on military aircraft was adopted by that movement many moons

ago. But the roundel that people may be most familiar with is that of London

Underground’s iconic branding.

Although the 150th anniversary of the Tube has been celebrated this year, the

roundel did not come into use until the early 1900s, and its use is fiercely

controlled by Transport for London. So a new clothing line called Roundel, and

rife with motifs familiar to any Tube user – from typography to Misha Black’s

“District” upholstery for seats on District Line trains,  created in 1978 –

definitely has the seal of approval.

At the heart of the collection, a collaboration with Slam Jam, which has been

creating and  distributing streetwear since 1989, is the motto “Thanks to the

Underground, we are all Londoners now”, which has been taken as a symbol of the

 inclusive and democratic nature of the public transport system that many love

to hate.

As well as T-shirts bearing slogans and logos, softly tailored pieces include a

work suit, school blazer and a selection of work shirts modelled on the

historic Underground uniform. Another updated classic is the MA-1- style

bomber, which has been a  symbol of youth style across the generations.

Trainers come in the form of Nike Air Max, two styles of which have been

created in a jacquard of woven polyester in Black’s “District” design.

Friday, 13 December 2013

Screw Factory offers Last Minute Market for all of you procrastinators

CLEVELAND, Ohio - Are you a last-minute holiday shopper? Do you find the best treasures when Santa's deadline looms? The Last Minute Market and Screw Factory Open Studio event was created with procrastinators in mind.

The Screw Factory, also known as the Lake Erie Building at Templar Industrial Park (13000 Athens Ave., Lakewood) will be brimming with holiday shoppers and art enthusiasts from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m Saturday, Dec. 21.

There will be fine crafts, fine art, funky art, high-end jewelry and fun gifts, when some of the 30 or so permanent artists open their studios and more than 100 jury-selected crafts people and artists set up shop on the building's second and third floors.

The show is organized by Cleveland Handmade Markets. Market organizer Kathy Patton says that the event began in 2008 in a borrowed Westlake warehouse as a year-end party for about 25 artists who knew each other from Etsy and from the Cleveland Handmade group. They all brought their leftover stock and shopped each other's crafts during the party.

They moved the party to the Screw Factory the following year, opened it to the public and invited the artists with studios in the building to participate. That year, there were about 60 exhibitors, and it has grown every year since.

An eight-person selection committee chooses the 100 invited artists out of more than 200 applicants. This has become one of the more a competitive shows around, Patton says, so there's great work around every corner.

The market will offer paintings, drawings, woodwork, ceramics, beauty items, bags, leather goods, clothing, photography, edible treats, hand-blended tea, jewelry, candles, home decor, glasswork, stationery, and even honey wine mead that is produced in the building. The Umami Moto food truck will be parked outside.

Templar Motor Cars made automobiles in the building from 1917 to 1924. Check out the Templar Room on the third floor for a look at Dave Buehler's collection of beautiful Templar cars. They were built in that room almost 100 years ago.

With all the offerings, you just might discover that Last Minute is really the best time and place to shop.

Thursday, 12 December 2013

How Alyssa Milano Created a Fan-Gear Fashion Empire for Women

Alyssa Milano isn’t crazy about pink. “I was in Dodger Stadium, and I was freezing—it was the beginning of the season, before the poop smell sets in,” says the star of TV’s Who’s the Boss? and Charmed, recalling a baseball game she attended eight years ago. “I went into the store to get something warm to wear. And I was offended.” The only color available in women’s clothing was pink. “Their answer for female sports apparel back then was ‘pink it and shrink it.’ It was either that or buy something from the kids’ section. Which I did. I got a kid’s hoodie.” In Dodger blue.

Milano, 40, figured she could do better than the mini Pepto-Bismol tees. So in 2007 she paid a fashion illustrator to draw some less boxy, team-color-appropriate clothing. Her agent happened to be friends with someone at Major League Baseball’s marketing division and got her a meeting with some execs. They liked her idea enough to set her up with former New York Giant Carl Banks, who runs the sports clothing collection for G-III Apparel Group, the $1.2 billion company that has licensing deals with Levi’s, Guess? Calvin Klein and the major sports leagues. G-III Apparel agreed to manufacture and distribute her nascent line, Touch by Alyssa Milano, which had this motto: “Where the game meets the after party.”
“My idea was to make Touch fashionable enough for women to wear outside the arena,” Milano says. The line, which was launched in 2008, now includes $85 quilted jackets in team colors, $45 jeans with logos on the back pockets, and $30 pendant necklaces with the logo in a crystal-lined silver heart. Milano chose the designs and modeled every piece on her website.

Still, her pitch meetings were a bust. She had trouble convincing team buyers that she even knew enough about sports to understand what she was selling. “It was a lot of work to validate my passion and knowledge. It’s probably what every woman goes through when she’s a sports fan. Except I was trying to validate it to Jim Rome,” she says of being interviewed by the loudmouthed sports talk show host. Milano grew up in Brooklyn, where she bonded with her dad and brother over New York Giants and L.A. Dodgers games. (Her dad stayed loyal even when the Dodgers did not.) She’s dated several professional athletes, such as hockey player Wayne McBean and pitchers Carl Pavano, Barry Zito, and Brad Penny. She’s also had L.A. Kings season tickets since she was 15 and Dodgers season tickets for the past 10 years. Milano blogs for; hosts segments on the TBS network called Hot Corner; and wrote a book in 2009 called Safe at Home: Confessions of a Baseball Fanatic. Her Australian shepherd is named Dodger Dog.