Friday, January 27, 2012

Fashion Group's "Rising Star Awards"

'Rise' and Shine

Fashion Group International's 15th annual Rising Star Awards were held yesterday at Cipriani 42nd Street. And since fashion is on all our minds, what with New York Fashion Week looming, this could not have come at a more perfect time. The ever popular Awards Ceremony and luncheon, which recognizes emerging talent in the fashion and design industries, and honors "eight outstanding individuals for their innovation, creativity, and accomplishments", was completely sold out, with approximately 600 in attendance.

Among the designers in attendance, Ruben and Isabel Toledo, Ralph Rucci, Thom Browne, Catherine Malandrino and Tommy Hilfiger, who arrived with his beautiful, blonde, and towering wife Dee Ocleppo- she looked hip, fab, and quite 70's, in an elongated wine fur vest and floor sweeping patterned pants by Tommy of course. (Tommy's daughter, Alexandria Hilfiger, co designer for Nahm, was a nominee in the Women's Ready- to- Wear category). Sponsors were Saks Fifth Avenue, In Style, Bebe, and Chic.TV. Movado generously provided the awards.

FGI's President, Margaret Hayes, kicked things off with her short and sweet welcoming address, reminding the nominees that even if they don't win an award, they should keep in mind that, "It's not how you win, but how you play the game". She also proudly pointed out that of the 8 presenters, three had been Rising Star Award recipients (Thom Browne, Christopher Coleman, and Monica Rich Kosann). The event was called from 11:15am to 2 pm and the always efficient and well organized Ms. Hayes chided the assembled guests that they had exactly "30 minutes" to eat their lunches (she was joking of course, but actually, the Bellinis were flying, the delicious meal WAS quickly and efficiently served, the awards were promptly handed out, and alas, by 2 pm, we were all merrily on our way).

Keynote Speakers this year were none other than Isabel & Ruben Toledo (FGI's Amy Rossi described the couple as "mesmerizing, talented, and completely engaging", a veritable "marriage of mind, spirit, and fashion" in her introduction). True to form, the couple - who seem to be ONE, almost joined at the hip, and capable of finishing one another's sentences - took turns in addressing the young emerging talent who were being honored. That said, Isabel was definitely the 'star' of the two. Among her wise observations which were made after first acknowledging Margaret Hayes and heralding FGI as "THE organization for individuality":

"Whatever you LOVE, whatever it is you are doing, keep doing it!" "Don't lose sight of what it is you love."

"It takes more than enthusiasm. You have to keep in touch with what drives you."

"I love THE RAW" in everything. The un- perfected. Love is in THE RAW". "You have time to perfect and edit later."

"Appreciate every stage of your life. You will never be in the same place again."

"For me, time is anything but the clock"

"The mere fact of DOING, creates the grooves that eventually identify you."

"It's important to be self propelled. Trust your instincts."

"Pragmatism becomes your best friend. Learn how to do a lot with a little."

"What keeps US going? With the help of the sun, we shine".

At the end, Ruben said "We want to wish you good luck. If you need more passion, you know where to find us!"
Accessories
Nominee Name:
Adriana Castro, ADRIANA CASTRO
Michelle Vale, MICHELLE VALE
Michelle Watson, MIMI & LU
Serra Turker , MISELA, INC.
Katherine Kim, ROMAN & SUSNSTONE
Ron Donovan, RON DONOVAN FOOTWEAR ACCESSORIES, INC
Blythe Harris, STELLA & DOT
Deborah Sawaf, THALE BLANC

Presenter: Rami Kashou
Winner: Blythe Harris- Stella & Dot

Beauty/Fragrance Corporate
Nominee Name:
Celine Barel, INTERNATIONAL FLAVORS & FRAGRANCES INC.
Remi Pulverail, GIVAUDAN FRAGRANCES
Sue Saadat, NARS COSMETICS
Donna Ramanauskas, ROBERTET FRAGRANCES

Presenter: Emily Dougherty
Winner: Celine Barel- International Flavors & Fragrances Inc.

Beauty/Fragrance Entrepreneur
Nominee Name:
David Moltz, D.S. & DURGA
Kelly Van Gogh, KELLY VAN GOGH HAIR COLOUR COSMETICS
Kaya Sorhaindo, SIX SCENTSPARFUMES
Michael Sedlacek & Liesa Helfen, WORKER B

Presenter: Maureen Kelly
Winner: David and Kavi Moltz, D.S & Durga

Home/Interior Design
Nominee Name:
Coco, COCOCOZY
Joe Manus, SHINER INTERNATIONAL
Tamara Eaton, TAMARA EATON DESIGN

Presenter: Christopher Coleman
Winner: Joe Manus, Shiner International

Fine Jewelry
Nominee Name:
Jessica Kagan Cushman, JESSICA KAGAN CUSHMAN STUDIO
Yolanda Torrubia & Amaia Torrubia, TORRUBIA & TORRUBIA
Wendy Brandes, WENDY BRANDES

Presenter: Monica Rich Kosann
Winner: Wendy Brandes (fyi, Ms. Brandes, clad in a red dress by Stacy Lomman, gave special thanks to fellow nominee Stacy Lomman: crediting her with putting her name into nomination, and dressing her for the occasion)

Retail
Nominee Name:
Tom Wilscam, HOMMAGE Atelier by Julien Farel
Randi Jacobson, REALM BOUTIQUE
Vasken Demirjian, VASKEN SALON

Presenter: Liz Rodbell
Winner: Vasken Demirjian, Vasken Salon

Menswear
Nominee Name:
Rob Magness, GROWN & SEWN
Ian Velardi, IAN VELARDI
Luis M. Fernandez, NUMBER: LAB
Simon Spurr, SIMON SPURR

Presenter: Thom Browne
Winner: Simon Spurr

Women’s Ready-To-Wear
Nominee Name:
Elene Cassis, ELENE CASSIS
Joel Diaz & Christina LaPens, JOLIBE
Nary Manivong & Alexandria Hilfiger, NAHM
Nara Paz, NARA PAZ DESIGN INTERNATIONAlE
Miguel Antoinne, MIGUEL ANTOINNE
Misha Nonoo, NONOO
Norman Ambrose, NORMAN AMBROSE
Stacy Lomman, STACY LOMMAN: NEW YORK
Steven McDermott, STEVIE MAC NEW YORK
Wes Gordon, WES GORDON

Presenter: Ralph Rucci
Winners: It was a tie between Wes Gordon, Wes Gordon, and Misha Nonoo, Nonoo

- Reported by Marilyn Kirschner

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

A Bad Idea Whose Time Has Come...

Editorial: KCD's Digital Fashion Shows

 WWD has reported that PR firm KCD is launching an online digital platform for designers to show their collections to a select audience of press and buyers. The first show being produced by KCD and King & Partners, a New York digital agency founded by creative director Tony King, is for designer Prabal Gurung. It is scheduled to be broadcast during the upcoming New York fashion week shows.

"Invited" guests will be emailed passwords that will allow them access to this "invitation only" video streaming presentation. KCD expects to charge designers in the future anywhere from $150,000 to $300,000 for the production. "Every journalist will get what they need to review the show," declares Ed Filipowski. He says the shows are for the use of the fashion industry and not the public. However, an embedded video will be available one hour after the show, so it is likely Youtube will be playing it soon after.

 This project is more-or-less a scheme by KCD to make more money from those designers who do not want to produce a live fashion show. The agency is trying to sell the idea to the CFDA as a way of relieving the congestion of so many live shows going on during fashion week. But we see it as just another bad idea for several reasons. First, most designers are not going to give up having a live show because the press and the buyers want them. The live show is part of the "ritual" of fashion and being there is as important as what is shown. Even live streaming of a show is no substitute for being there. No matter what anyone says, seeing the clothes live and getting the feel of the audience response to a collection is a very important part of the review process.

Secondly, any designer can shoot a video for a few hundred dollars of his or her show and put it up online on Youtube or their own website. It will be immediately accessible to everyone or, if they prefer, they can also send out emails with passwords to only those they want to see it.

And finally, within a day or so of any major or even minor show, videos, photos and complete lookbooks from photographers who were at the show are already being posted, and reporters, bloggers, and friends of the designer have or will have already uploaded reviews and critiques. So why does any designer have to pay KCD upwards of $300,000 for what is going to be up online anyway -- mostly for free?

-Ernest Schmatolla

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Fashion at FIAF 2012

Fashion at FIAF 2012

And God Created Woman (Et Dieu… créa la femme)
Tuesday, February 14 at 12:30, 4 & 7:30pm Valentine’s Day!
Roger Vadim, 1956. Color. 95 min.
With Brigitte Bardot, Curd Jürgens, Jean-Louis Trintignant, Jane Marken
In French with English subtitles.

New York, New York, January 23, 2012—The French Institute Alliance Française (FIAF), New York's premiere French cultural center, presents fashion at FIAF in February and March of 2012. Building on the overwhelming success of its Fashion Talks series, FIAF has expanded its annual program celebrating fashion with two film series, an exhibit of fashion illustrations, and a new season of its signature Fashion Talks.

- The CinémaTuesdays film series: Carte Blanche to agnès b., curated by the celebrated designer (February 7-28). Designer agnès b. will appear in person to present the first film in the series The Crime of Monsieur Lange (Le crime de Monsieur Lange) on Tuesday, February 7. Other films in the series: …And God Created Woman (Et Dieu… créa la femme) on Tuesday February 14; My Life to Live (Vivre sa vie) and Pierrot le Fou on February 21; and Golden Marie (Casque d’or) on February 28.

- The film series Reel Fashion (February 21-27) presents four recent insider documentaries on fashion. Director LoÏc Prigent will appear in person to present Marc Jacobs & Louis Vuitton on Tuesday, February 21, The Day Before: Fendi by Karl Lagerfeld on Wednesday, February 22, and The Day Before: Proenza Schouler on Thursday, February 23.

- Dressed for Art, an exhibit showcasing the colorful fashion illustrations of French satirist Jean-Philippe Delhomme in the FIAF Gallery (February 24-April 14).

- And FIAF’s popular series Fashion Talks returns in March for illuminating discussions with designers Reed Krakoff on Wednesday, March 21, Stefano Pilati on Tuesday, March 27, and Dries Van Noten on Thursday, March 29, moderated by Pamela Golbin, Chief Curator of the Musée de la Mode et du Textile at the Louvre.

For ticket information & a complete schedule of time and places of all events: www.fiaf.org/fashion

Press: Natascha Bodemann
nbodemann@fiaf.org
PR Director
French Institute Alliance Francaise (FIAF)
22 East 60th Street
New York, NY 10022
Tel: (646) 388-6677
Cell: (646) 287-2126

Monday, January 23, 2012

The Costume Designers Guild Award Nominees

 The Costume Designers Guild has announced nominees in contemporary, fantasy and period film categories for its 14th annual awards ceremony. Winners will be announced at a Feb. 21 gala hosted by Jane Lynch at the Beverly Hilton in Beverly Hills. Contemporary nominees include "Bridesmaids," "The Descendants," "Drive," "The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo" and Melancholia. Period films are "The Artist," "Jane Eyre," "The Help," "Hugo" and "W.E." The fantasy nominees are "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2," "Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides," "Red Riding Hood," "Thor" and "X Men: First Class."

The nominees include three-time Academy Award winner Sandy Powell ("Hugo") and Oscar nominated Arianne Phillips ("W.E."). The group also announced its TV nominees in the contemporary series, period/fantasy series and movie/miniseries categories. The honorary Spotlight Award and Distinguished Collaborator Award will be announced next week and presented at the Feb. 21 ceremony. The CDG, founded in 1953, consists of more than 750 working costume professionals around the world.

For more information: http://www.costumedesignersguild.com/cdg-awards/  or to request media credentials to cover this event or for press inquiries, please contact Alexandra Lippin of The Lippin Group at 323.965.1990.


The full list of nominees:

Excellence in Contemporary Film:

"Bridesmaids": Leesa Evans & Christine Wada
"The Descendants": Wendy Chuck
"Drive": Erin Benach
"The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo": Trish Summerville
"Melancholia": Manon Rasmussen

Excellence in Period Film:

"The Artist": Mark Bridges
"Jane Eyre": Michael O'Connor
"The Help": Sharen Davis
"Hugo": Sandy Powell
"W.E.": Arianne Phillips

Excellence in Fantasy Film:

"Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2": Jany Temime
"Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides": Penny Rose
"Red Riding Hood": Cindy Evans
"Thor": Alexandra Byrne
"X-Men: First Class": Sammy Sheldon

Outstanding Contemporary TV Series:

"Glee": Loy Eyrich & Jennifer Eve
"Modern Family": Alix Friedberg
"Revenge": Jill Ohanneson
"Saturday Night Live": Tom Broecker & Eric Justian
"Sons of Anarchy": Kelli Jones
Outstanding Period/Fantasy TV Series:

"Boardwalk Empire": John A. Dunn, Lisa Padovani
"The Borgias": Gabriella Pescucci
"Game of Thrones": Michele Clapton
"Once Upon a Time": Eduardo Castro
"Pan Am": Ane Crabtree
Outstanding Made-for-TV Movie or Miniseries:

"Downton Abbey": Susannah Buxton
"The Kennedys": Christopher Hargadon
"Mildred Pierce": Ann Roth

Excellence in Commercial Costume Design:

Carl's Jr., "Miss Turkey": Francine Lecoultre
Dos Equis, "The Most Interesting Man in the World": Julie Vogel
Swiffer, "Country Dirt Girl": Roseanne Fiedler



Wednesday, January 18, 2012

"On Feminism & Fashion" - by Marilyn Kirschner

All The More Power To You

Coco Chanel

Feminism is a grass roots social, cultural, and political movement, whose concern is with gender inequalities and equal rights for women. Ms. Magazine, the voice of feminism for about 40 years, is addressing the relationship between feminism and fashion with a feature in their current issue, If the Clothes Fit - A Feminist Takes On Fashion which deals with the social pressure historically put on women's appearances, the physical scrutiny and significance of their dress and grooming habits (especially in the work place), and the pressure on women to be fashionable. The author, Minh-Ha. T. Pham, is an assistant professor in the History of Art & Visual Studies department and Asian American Studies program at Cornell University, a co-author of the blog Threadbared, and also curates the blog  Of Another Fashion .

An excerpt from the article went live the other day: http://msmagazine.com/blog/blog/2012/01/17/if-the-clothes-fit-a-feminist-takes-on-fashion/ . Among her observations: fashion, like so many other things associated primarily with women, may be dismissed as trivial, but it shapes how we’re viewed by others, especially on the levels of gender, class and race. In turn, how we’re read determines how we are treated, especially in the workforce — whether we are hired, promoted and respected, and how well we are paid. That most ordinary and intimate of acts, getting dressed, has very real political and economic consequences. If feminists ignore fashion, we are ceding our power to influence it. Fortunately, history has shown that feminists can, instead, harness fashion and use it for our own political purposes.

Okay, first, let me just say that if a woman wants to wear hooker shoes, that's her choice. If she is only buying them because she is being told they are the height of fashion, she should have her head examined. I have said before teetering on shoes you can't walk in without holding onto your companion is just plain stupid and unattractive. There is nothing modern or chic about that. There are as many great looking flats and low heels as there are mile high stilettos, and not every designer or shoe company proposes only ridiculously high high heels. Secondly, it is not just women who are being pre-judged based on their appearance -- men too. Everyone is under the same scrutiny; it is simply human nature.

That said, I would go a step further and suggest that fashion IS the essence of feminism and, when used properly, it can be the ultimate feminist tool. What is more feminist than something that empowers women? What is more empowering than the confidence that comes from knowing you have what it takes to look and feel your best regardless of the occasion or situation? Informed, smart, clothing choices, especially those things that not only look good but are practical and functional, have the power to do just that.

Clothing is not only required by law (well, in most places anyway), but it's a necessity: protective against the elements, it has the ability to enhance, camouflage and hide those things we want to hide (it's quicker, easier and less painful than plastic surgery though admittedly, not always less costly - LOL). It allows for self expression and let's us be whomever we want, whenever we want. Women wear many hats these days and we have to be quick change artists. When you know you are properly and appropriately turned out, it frees your mind and allows you to get on with life and focus on the more important things at hand.

Sure, if the obsession with clothes and fashion, and all things superficial, spirals out of control, or if it is a dangerously expensive addiction that gets in the way of living a normal life, that is not good or healthy. Luckily, this could not be a better time for fashion and feminism. Fashion is completely democratic and readily accessible at all price points; it's simply ridiculous to suggest one need to break the bank to look great. And only a fool would think they have to buy new things every season or blindly follow trends. Having style has nothing to do with any of that. It's about freedom of expression and freedom of choice, and being true to who you are.

As for dress codes, they basically don't exist anymore and unless you are working in a corporate environment, there is a wide range of ways in which to dress. Traditional sexual stereotypes and roles (along with age old conventions and mores) have been completely challenged and all but broken down. There is a continuing blurring of the line between what is considered traditionally male and traditionally female and, in fact, some of the best pieces each season are completely unisex.

The idea that fashion design is the bi-product of men objectifying women to fulfill their own fantasies is old and passe and could not be further from the truth (though if you want to be objectified, you can do that - it's your choice so go for it!) Just think about designers like Nicolas Guesquiere, Raf Simons, Rick Owens, Francisco Costa, Ralph Rucci, Ralph Lauren, Michael Kors, Oliver Theyskens, Helmut Lang, Christopher Bailey, Dries Van Noten among others, who consistently address the needs of smart, chic, modern women without ever degrading or objectifying them. Speaking of which, where would we be without the late, great Yves Saint Laurent who shocked the world when he put women in pantsuits, tuxedos, pea jackets and trench coats? And while women designers may still be outnumbered by the guys, they have been and will continue to be major design forces, who understand first hand, what women need and want.

Where to begin? How about with Coco Chanel, perhaps the greatest designer of all time and a true feminist. She broke the rules and bended tradition with her menswear inspired designs which were meant to be freeing, easy, and comfortable, not to mention truly chic. The names of other revered innovators both past and present: Miuccia Prada and Elsa Schiaparelli, (both of whom will be honored by the Metropolitan Museum of Art's Costume Institute in their upcoming blockbuster spring exhibition, Schiaparelli and Prada: Impossible Conversations, May 10 through August 19, 2012), Phoebe Philo, Mme. Gres, Claire McCardell, Donna Karan (she gave us 8 easy pieces and a system for dressing that was modern and highly practical), Bonnie Cashin (the essence of practicality with those amazing pockets), Isabel Toledo, Anne Klein, Norma Kamali, Yeohlee, Maria Cornejo, and Diane von Furstenberg. By the way, the work of many of the aforementioned names (both men and women) will be included in Impact: 50 Years of the CFDA, an exhibition at the Museum at FIT, February 10 - April 17, 2012, www.fitnyc.edu/museum .

Finally, as for the notion that fashion should be dismissed as something frivolous and superficial, let me just say that I always loved fashion and knew early on that I wanted to be a fashion editor. Upon graduation from George Washington University with a B.A. in art history/sociology, I returned to New York to fulfill my dream. After working at Harper's Bazaar as an assistant fashion editor for a little while, I began to wonder if I was wasting my college education and started to feel as though I had to make excuses for pursuing such a 'frivolous' career. I even thought about taking the law boards (truly!). Then I had an epiphany of sorts and realized I did not want to go back to school for at least 4 more years, and really began to apply myself. I found my true calling. But perhaps what really says it all for me is Bill Cunningham. At the very end of the movie, Bill Cunningham, New York, he rejects the notion that fashion is mere frivolity with his observation that "Fashion is the armor to survive the reality of everyday life.” I couldn't have said it better.

  

Monday, January 16, 2012

The Golden Globes Report by Diane Clehane

Fashion Winners & Sinners

Angelina Jolie & Brad Pitt

 
This year's Golden Globes was a suitably lighthearted affair that seemed infinitely more enjoyable than last year's broadcast namely because host Ricky Gervais struck just the right tone with the Hollywood crowd. For all his talk that he wasn't going to hold back, it was clear that this was going to be a kinder, gentler Ricky when he chose to take not one but two shots at a safe target -- Kim Kardashian -- within the first ten minutes of the broadcast. When Gervais introduced Johnny Depp, the evening's first presenter, he cleverly managed to signal all was forgiven(at least by Depp)for his full-frontal attacks like the one he deployed on The Tourist last year. If you happened to have forgotten, Gervais basically called out Depp for making one of the worst movies of last year with costar Angelina Jolie. Tonight, he told the audience that Depp had taken such a hit for making the film that he was now reduced to starring in a film with him. When Depp took the stage Gervais asked Depp if he had yet to see The Tourist to which Depp sheepishly admitted he hadn't. It was a funny bit and it worked to set the right tone for the night.

From there on in, the stars knew it was pretty much safe to come out on stage and those that did endured fairly benign ribbing which made for a relaxed evening that has always made the Globes the best of the award shows to watch. Full disclosure: I switched to PBS for my weekly fix of Downton Abbey from 9 to 10 pm (moments after it won its own Globe for Best Mini-Series. Hurray!) so I won't be doing my usual minute-by-minute recap. Instead, here's my fashion scorecard from the evening. Let's face it, that's what you want to read about anyway. (For those do who care, I will be doing my usual minute-by-minute recap of The Academy Awards next month)

Okay, let's talk fashion.

The evening's big winner? Zac Posen who dressed so many women I finally lost count including Reese Witherspoon, Kelly Osbourne (never looked better)and glamazon Elle Macpherson.

So who was Best Dressed? Hard to say, I have to give it to Angelina Jolie. While she contends she isn't particularly fond of doing the whole red carpet thing, no other actress is doing it better right now. Sure, she looked a little ice queen-ish but like my mother always said, it's not what you wear, it's how you wear it and Angelina owned that red carpet. No question. Her choice of the one shoulder ivory satin stunner accented with a touch of red is sure to be one of those images that we see over and over again forever. Everything was perfect: the understated hair swept into a chic chingnon, the scarlet lips and the red clutch were to die for. If we were scoring points for best dressed couple, however, we'd have to deduct some points. We like the clean, shaven classic Brad a lot better than the scraggly one.


Charlize Theron

There are several runners-up for the night's top fashion honors. My three favorites of the night: Charlize Theron in pale pink Dior couture (I have to say I really loved the black Azzedine Alaia she wore to the Critic's Choice Awards), Natalie Portman in a sumptuous crimson and fuchsia Lanvin (a glorious way to return from maternity leave!)and Kate Beckinsale (the best body in Hollywood) in a strapless beaded Cavalli gown in the evening's surprisingly popular shade of greige.

George Clooney

Stacy Keibler's looked beautiful in her red Valentino gown(loved the bow in the back!) She and beau George Clooney are my pick for the night's best looking couple. Big surprise, I know.

Other actresses who dressed and impressed: Sofia Vergara in a strapless navy Vera Wang fishtail gown that showed off her twice a day visits to the gym in preparation for tonight perfectly. An elegant Jessica Alba in a lavender beaded Gucci gown that reminded me of another dress in a similar hue that first got her notice on the carpet several years ago. Alba has taken a page from Halle Berry's playbook and began dressing like a movie star long before she became one.

And a round of applause for two of my favorite Hollywood vets: the ageless Michelle Pfeiffer looked absolutely flawless in her navy strapless Armani with its flowing tiered skirt. At 73, Jane Fonda showing off her still killer bod and beautiful face (so what if it's been helped along, she looks good) is my hero.

I bet Reese Witherspoon is having a lot of good sex. How else do you explain her temptress bedhead tresses and skintight red fishtail gown? Contrast this look, if you can, with that frumpy 1960's debutante ball gown she wore when she won her Oscar one husband ago. The transformation is striking. It's not that she didn't look good, but it was just a little too much. I much preferred her revenge dressing looks that she wore from Nina Ricci when she and Ryan Phillippe first spilt.

What a difference a few years make, Madonna. I was frankly shocked that she chose to wear a completely boring Reem Acra (really?) on the red carpet after such a long absence in the limelight. Meh. And the crucifix and gloves? Haven't we moved on from that?

Rooney Mara has one of the most gorgeous faces I've ever seen. I liked her black Nina Ricci dress but it felt it was a little too much of an expected choice given we've seen her in so much black of late. Time to let go of the goth girl.

What was with all those matronly dresses? I love Michelle Williams (who happened to give one of the evening's loveliest speeches) but her penchant for frumpy frocks is disappointing. Remember that dreadful burlap sack adorned with daisies she wore to last year's Globes? This year's panne velvet number by Jason Wu was an improvement but not by much. She is too lovely for these heavy dresses that overwhelm her petite frame.

Jessica Biel looked like she was wearing Sandra Bullock's wedding dress from The Proposal before Betty White altered it. Draping that gives you a third breast is never a good idea. I stood next to this beautiful creature on the red carpet this fall when she was wearing a gorgeous Giambattista Valli. When she gets it right, she's flawless. This was not one of those nights.

Another Jessica, The Help's Jessica Chastain, missed by a mile in a too tight, strangely styled Givenchy. I didn't get the turtleneck, all those pearls or the belt. And her fussy hair aged her. This beautiful young actress, who is really having a moment, needed a statement making dress to suit the stellar year she's had. This was not it.

And what was up with Mila Kunis? You get a contract with Dior and you show up looking like you've put on ten pounds and you've been up all night? I love this actress and anointed her as a new fashion star at last year's Oscars when she wore that dazzling lace dress in lavender by Elie Saab, but tonight she looked awful.

Memo to Lea Michelle: please stop trying so hard. She was literally the last person left on E!'s red carpet and was posing for anyone with a flash. And that lace Marchesa, which would have looked more at home on a professional ice rink, was as overwrought as the actress who wore it.

Now it's on to the SAG Awards!

Leave a comment and tell me who you thought was the night's best and worst dressed.


Friday, January 06, 2012

Who's Who in New York Fashion PR

New Listing to our Directory


Our exclusive members directory of 85 New York fashion public relations firms is the most complete and up-to-day listings found anywhere on or off the Internet. The firms are divided into four groups: "The Major Players"; "The Young Turks"; "The Palace Guard"; and "The Up and Coming". To access this directory you must be a supporting member of our site. It costs only $59 a year and we provide additional features as a thank you. Are you a member yet?

Mannfolk Public Relations
Phone: 212.255.4166
Email: joseph@mannfolkpr.com  Website: mannfolkpr.com  

Dorethy Mannfolk started the agency in 1998 with offices first in LA and now in New York. It is a boutique agency specializing in fashion, beauty & lifestyle accounts and was named among the country's most dependable pr firms in WWD pr "it" list. The agency provides for their clients the entire range of services offered by larger agencies but with the personalized attention and dedication to excellence only a smaller firm can provide.

Clients included: Avita, Honeydew Intimates, Nally & Millie, Gem Gear Accessories, WEN Hair and Body Care Products, Ohm Beads Jewelry, Chaz Dean and celebrity fitness trainer Terri Walsh.

Diane Clehane's 'Royal Watch Column'

All Hail "Downton Abbey!"


Lookonline's entertainment editor Diane Clehane examines the phenomenon that is "Downton Abbey" and examines why the PBS Masterpiece drama whose second season premieres this Sunday is the year's most stylish show. Created and written by Oscar winner Julian Fellowes, "Downton" is filled with gorgeous Edwardian era costumes by Susannah Buxton whose meticulous attention to detail makes every episode a fashionista's dream. But the award winning series is much more than a lavish costume period piece, it's the most compulsively watchable drama to come along in years (So long, "Mad Men") with unforgettable characters and a winning blend of wit, plot twists and star crossed romance. For Diane's take on why "Downton" is required Sunday night viewing and a sneak peak at season two, read this week's installment of:

'The Royal Watch' at Dianeclehane.com


Tuesday, January 03, 2012

The 15th Fashion Group International "Rising Star Awards"

Recognizing emerging talent in the Fashion and Design industries: Accessories - Beauty/Fragrance Corporate - Beauty/Fragrance Entrepreneur - Fine Jewelry - Home/Interior - Men's RTW - Retail - Women's RTW

KEYNOTE SPEAKERS: Isabel & Ruben Toledo

Thursday January 26th At Cipriani 42nd Street. Member ticket: $160, Guest ticket: $190, Patron Table: $1,900. Click here to order
SPONSORS: Saks Fifth Avenue, InStyle, bebe, ChicTV

Finalists & Presenters:
Accessories
Presenter: Rami Kashou
Nominee Name Company:
Adriana Castro Adriano Castro
Michelle Vale Michelle Vale
Michelle Watson Mimi & Lu
Serra Turker Misela Inc.
Katherine Kim Roman & Sunstone
Ron Donovan Ron Donovan
Blythe Harris Stella & Dot
Deborah Sawath Thale Blanc

Beauty/Fragrance Corporate
Presenter: Emily Dougherty, Elle -
Nominee Name Company:
Celine Barel International Flavors & Fragrances Inc.
Remi Pulverail Givaudan Fragrances
Sue Saadat Nars Cosmetics
Donna Ramanauskas Robertet Fragrances

Beauty/Fragrance Entrepreneur
Presenter: tbd
Nominee Name Company:
David Moltz D.S. & Durga
Kelly Van Gogh Kelly Van Gogh Hair Colour Cosmetics
Kaya Sorhaindo Six Scents Parfums
Michael Sedlacek & Liesa Helfen Worker B

Home/Interior Design
Presenter: Tbd
Nominee Name Company:
Coco COCOCOZY
Joe Manus Shiner International
Tamara Eaton Tamara Eaton Design

Fine Jewelry
Presenter: tbd
Nominee Name Company:
Jessica Kagan Cushman Jessica Kagan Cushman Studio
Yolanda Torrrubia & Amaia Torrubia Torrubia & Torrubia
Wendy Brandes Wendy Brandes

Retail
Presenter: tbd
Nominee Name Company:
Tom Wilscam HOMMAGE Atelier by Julien Farel
Randi Jacobson REALM
Vasken Demirjian Vasken Salon

Men’s Apparel
Presenter: Thom Browne
Nominee Name Company:
Rob Magness Grown & Sewn
Ian Velardi Ian Velardi
Luis M. Fernandez Number: Lab
Simon Spurr Simon Spurr

Women’s Ready-To-Wear
Presenter: Ralph Rucci
Nominee Name Company:
Elene Cassis Elene Cassis
Joel Diaz & Christina LaPens Jolibe
Nary Manivong & Alexandria Hilfiger NAHM
Nara Paz Nara Paz Design Internationale
Misha Nonoo NONOO
Norman Ambrose Norman Ambrose
Stacy Lomman Stacy Lomman: New York
Steven McDermott Stevie Mac New York
Wes Gordon Wes Gordon