2011-10-30

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ペンギリーズは2009年に活動開始した、イングランドはリーズを拠点とするバンド(最近こういったグループをバンドと呼ぶのは憚れる気も)。おそらくはリーダーのリック・ホーリングベリーとジム・オドハティーによるプライベートなプロジェクトとしてスタート、その後正式なグループとして活動をはじめた模様で、メンバー・サポートはリーズ大学出身者を中心に構成されている。

リックは大学在学中よりエミー・ザ・グレイトのバンドメンバーとしてグランストンベリーフェスに参加していたり(2009年の日本ツアーにも参加していたらしい)、グラミー賞にノミネートされたコリーヌ・ベイリー・レイのレコーディングにも参加しており、早熟かつ非凡な才能の持ち主(いまは大学を卒業しているようなので多分22~3歳?ジェイムス・ブレイクと同世代ですかね)。

デビューEPの表題曲でもある「Toby's Hill(上記)」は、霊歌のごときハーモニーとダウンテンポのリズムが刻まれるイントロから始まる。まるでパーチマン刑務所のワークソングのようであり、リズムは杭を打つメタファーであり、そこからダブステップぽいイマドキな音像へと移行する有機的な展開によって、われわれは「20世紀にもしもロックンロールが生まれなかったら?」という、ノーロックなパラレルワールドの2011年へと誘われるのである…とかなんとか(妄想)。

そんな意図があったかどうか実際のところはよくわからないが、アップされていたリック・ホーリングベリーのインタビューによると、音楽性としてはビョークに影響を受けていると答えている(よく聞き取れてませんが、たぶん)。なるほど。

実質のデビュー作となるEPはbandcampで購入可能(name your price)。ちなみにストリーミングで聴けない他3曲もそれぞれ趣が異なるが、それぞれとてもよろしい。ハリー・ニルソンの楽曲をチルウェイブ化させたようなドローンポップのM-4「Stillness is Digging for Worms」が特に素晴らしい。

Last.fmにアップされている初期のデモ音源や、今年初頭にリリースされたシングルからは、ベイルートからの影響やチェンバーなポップミュージックを志向していたように思えるが、学業もひと段落して本格的に音楽活動を開始したのだろうか、その腰のすえ方が表れた良作だと思います。

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おまけ:おすすめ英国フォーク

Hunting Bears - Only in My Skin

ペンギリーズと同じくリーズ大学を母体とするグループ。なんでもリーズの学生音楽シーンは今とてもアツいらしい

LeeFest TV: Professor Penguin Session

ペンギリーズとも縁の深いフォーク/ポップグループ。サウスロンドンで活動しているらしい(がボーカル氏がリーズ出身?)。ボン・イヴェールのカバーもやってたり。

The SeaZora - Sylvan Years

上記ハンティングベアーズがフェイスブックでお気に入りに入れていたロンドンのグループ。英国フォーク直系といった空気。

ストーン・ローゼスの再結成が大々的なトピックになったり、マムフォード&サンズのような、インディギターバンドがアコースティック化したタイプの「フォークムーブメント」が席巻する一方で、英国ポップの系図を辿りながらも、ボン・イヴェールやアンドリュー・バードといったニュー・ウィアード・アメリカ以降の現代的なアメリカンフォークを聴いて育った世代が、それぞれが同好の仲間を見つけ、いよいよ表舞台へと姿を現しつつあるのが2011年の英国の今なのではないだろうか?とも思った。

| tww | 2011年10月30日 15:05 | interest_music
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 The final fashion week at Bryant Park could be a record-breaking seven days, Ruth Finley, founder of The Fashion Calendar, told WWD. Finley predicts that...Click here to leave a comment.HuffPost High School welcomes a lively, thoughtful debate in the comment section. Keep in mind that the articles here are penned by young authors, so please keep criticism respectful, and help us to keep this a safe and supportive place for writers of all ages to contribute.Former New York Times Style editor Holly Brubach took a look inside designer Alexander Wang's TriBeCa loft, incidentally where she used to live, . The oft-referenced residence and it took eight months for 26-year-old Wang to properly redecorate upon Brubach's departure. Brubach describes :"Welcome to your apartment!" Wang greeted me, as if I were just returning from a long vacation and he had redecorated in my absence. In fact, I had sold him my loft eight months before. Standing in the place where my pantry used to be, I took in the scene: white walls, black velvet couch, black Karl Springer coffee table, black crocodile dining chairs, black Serge Mouille floor lamps, a pair of chairs covered in black goat fur, zebra rugs, a black fox throw. An entire black menagerie seemed to have given their lives for the privilege of a place in the home of New York's hottest downtown fashion designer. "Well," Wang corrected himself, "my apartment." And Wang discussed what he wanted from his new home: "Having lived in New York, where you're always out and your friends are always out because no one has enough space to entertain, I imagined an apartment where I could have my friends over and on the weekend not have to leave because I feel claustrophobic. Where I would learn how to cook or do crafts projects."Take a look at Wang's digs and scroll down to check out a short video on another new addition in the cool boy's life -- his SoHo store, which opened in February. .WATCH: At 25 years old, Alexander Wang is already a fashion designer wise beyond his years. Although he started out five years ago clothing size two models, Wang has broadened his base to a wider and perhaps more mature range of customers in search of his type of "urban cool," the New York Times ."His clothes just hit the edges of what's acceptable. They appeal to that part of you that wishes you were a skinny hipster," said Sally Singer, Vogue's fashion features director, who called Wang's style "humorously slutty."Wang, however, has remained hardnosed amidst the success of his collections, overseeing all aspects of his business. He works with his mother; his sister-in-law, an accountant; and his brother, well-versed in international business. Wang told the Times:"Fashion in some people's eyes is very untouchable and super-indulgent. For me, it's just clothes to be worn. And at the end of the day, the point is to sell the product."He's also remained humble, remarking, "I am not reinventing the wheel. I'm not an artiste," and also mused that it's weird to see his name on his clothes. He had this anecdote to share about about his childhood fashion inspiration:Once, thumbing through a dog-eared copy of Harper's Bazaar that he had taken from a hair salon, Alexander, then 8, encountered an image that is still etched on his retina. "It was a model in a pinstripe Tom Ford suit for Gucci," he recalled. Even as a schoolboy, he was savvy enough to recognize the model as Georgina Grenville and the photographer as Patrick Demarchelier. "I carried that picture with me everywhere," he said.Get HuffPost Style on and ! The Alexander Wang Lawsuit train is still chugging along. Women's Wear Daily reports that the case, which alleges that Wang employees were forced to endure long hours in poor conditions and fired after requesting worker’s compensation, was last Friday.And as the ante is upped, Wang has hit back, further refuting the charges made against his company. :"The claims regarding sweatshop conditions are completely untrue...In reality, this case was filed by an individual who was let go by the company as a result of serious harassment issues. We stand by our decision to promote a safe workplace environment for all employees regardless of false claims that may be waged against us in retaliation."That individual is Wenyu Lu, in Queens Supreme Court several weeks ago. But the notion that Lu was simply angry over his dismissal doesn't entirely cover Wang's tracks. were included in the initial suit.Additionally, after it was filed, , alleging that she was forced to work 90 hours a week in Wang's factory and both she and Lu were fired after filing for worker's comp due to work-sustained injuries.Now, , the plaintiffs have asked Federal Judge Harold Baer to consider the case a class-action suit. and stay tuned -- Wang's company has less than three weeks to make an official response.See Alexander Wang's Fall 2012 show: The New York Observer:Hot on the suede wedge heels of his CFDA Swarovski Accessories Designer of the Year win, sartorial supernova Alexander Wang has added another trophy to his repertoire--though this one has shelves rather than the need for one. According to city records, the dynamic designer known for his downtown, "model-off-duty" aesthetic, bought a $2 million Tribeca one-bedroom from former New York Times Style editor Holly Brubach. NEW YORK — There they were: Gisele Bundchen, Shalom Harlow and Karolina Kurkova, along with Alexander Wang's slick, glossy fall collection, all on the catwalk Saturday evening at New York Fashion Week.Wang assembled a most impressive group of top models for a test spin of his newest looks boasting leather, shine and chiffon in black, oxblood red and an optic white he called "peroxide."Wang's runway always has a good turnout of big names, but most of these top models don't work the seasonal previews anymore. He gave them a grand stage with a complicated layout of mirrors and narrow pathways.The clothes, however, were more straightforward than Wang has offered recently. The downtown vibe he embraces often limits his appeal to the cool-girl, downtown model types. This time, the military-inspired trenchcoats (including one worn by Bundchen), wool sweaters and tweed jackets – waxed and with vinyl visors for effect – potentially work for anyone who needs an outfit for a dressy event or even for the office. That's not to say the looks were dowdy or boring; in fact, they showed that Wang is maturing into a more sophisticated designer.Model Liya Kebede didn't walk the show, but she sat in the front row. She said she enjoys the view from there. "I really enjoying seeing the full collection. I love to see the designer's real vision. Back there, you see bits and pieces," she said.Still, she had her Wang on, including her shirt and shoes. "I like that it's hip and young."Wang came out with his usual bouncy step and big smile for his bow.In his notes, he said, "Big hugs to my family and everyone else who has made this dream come true."___The public was taken aback when the claiming their clothing lines for QVC and other outlets utilized sweatshop laborers overseas. But now, a fashion designer's employees are claiming that he violated labor conditions right here in New York City.The New York Post reports that , claiming that conditions in Wang's Chinatown factory are reprehensible and dangerous. The workers say they were forced to work for Wang and his brother for 16 hours or more per day without overtime pay in a windowless 200 square foot office. One employee alleges he was fired on February 16 after filing a worker's comp claim after he was Wang -- who just to walk his New York Fashion Week show -- has made a name for himself with his line of laid-back, casual sportswear.We've reached out to Alexander Wang's office for comment and will update when we hear back. In the meantime, and see the looks from Wang's Fall 2012 show below.UPDATE: , as a company rep told Women's Wear Daily, "The company takes its obligations to comply with the law very seriously, including the relevant wage and hour regulations, the payment of overtime to eligible employees and having a safe working environment for all of our employees. We will vehemently defend any allegations to the contrary.” Related on HuffPost:See Alexander Wang's Fall 2012 show: eGHZmFyID44mYu00M5dZQhYaAu%2FAmgJCGfYy66NCsZ2EUUrkxATVpY3ZqY8OFl1%2FoXLYoQU8PvUL2Z1kZDKyyoA05FaNsFcAC5NV9gVopOsWvOjkA%2Fbw9Fv1DcoUwx8n4kIuB5Ua5hfpX3jCUjpesA7EFvdsOSuTBc8OfyGzw3GYqrfjYvGOR8QAEXbdlMhNAlexander Wang does not run a sweatshop. period. He has an in-house sample room in his studio that makes runway and sales samples ONLY, which are not even sold. Practically EVERY single highend designer in NY has an in-house sample room for the same purpose. Do they work extremely long hours leading up to a runway show? Absolutely. So do ALL salaried design team employees before a runway show, who aren't even paid overtime. But to imply that these are throwback "sweatshops" is slanderous and completely misleading. Notice when the story was first reported, 30 employees were supposedly filing a class-action suit. Now it comes out only 1 other employee has joined suit, so clearly there was no class-action suit to begin with, only one plaintiff with an aggressive lawyer trying to blow the situation out of proportion. For years people have criticized wang for producing his clothes overseas. Yet those same people suddenly think that he's been producing them in chinatown this entire time? It doesn't even make sense.I've seen disguisting sample rooms in the garment district, but what wang runs is anything but. Go online and look at images of his studio or watch the documentaries on him which even show his sample room. His entire studio is a classy, first-rate operation. The sample room is huge, spacious, and open-plan. If you really think his sewers have been working in a sweatshop this entire time, then all of his employees have.All you Wang fans can breathe easy: the contentious back in March .Women's Wear Daily reports that the plaintiffs, lead by former employees Wenyu Lu and Flor Duante, two weeks ago for undisclosed terms. back in March, claiming that Wang was running a sweatshop-like factory at his New York office. There were claims of 16-hour work days without overtime pay, a windowless office and work-sustained injuries -- all of which Alexander Wang's camp vehemently denied. Duante and Lu also both claimed that they were fired after filing for worker's comp due to work-related injuries.Even after to the suit and , the company continued to contest the veracity of the charges. , "The claims regarding sweatshop conditions are completely untrue... We stand by our decision to promote a safe workplace environment for all employees regardless of false claims that may be waged against us in retaliation." The company can now feel vindicated with the case dismissed. The sides not only settled but also , reports WWD.You can now return to enjoying those expensive slouchy tees and soft-as-butter tanks you love so much. For more deets, .Want more? Be sure to check out HuffPost Style on , , and .My wife and I are both presently involved in a separate lawsuit against the Wangs. We lived in San Francisco in a building owned by the Wang family trust from March '08 -Dec '10. The same building Alexander began his business from years ago. His brother Dennis was our absentee landlord and we had issues with his inattention to a number of problems at the basement apartment. Whenever we had a problem such as plumbing, washer/dryer failure and a host of others basic service issues we never had any help in regard to repairs. We paid our rent on time and were good tenants but were subject to tirades from Dennis if we ever brought up problems with the apartment. We were forced to move and threatened with utility shut down if we did not voluntarily leave within the three week notice. We moved out just to avoid the stress and never got our sizable security deposit back. We were forced to seek legal counsel and the matter is still in dispute. They were the worst landlords my wife and I have had in the 20+ years of apartment dwelling. We sympathize with the plaintiffs because we know the type of people they are dealing with and just how irresponsible and antagonistic they are. I wish the plaintiffs luck in their case v. the Wangs. You would think that with all the success they have had in their business they might treat employees and tenants a little better.Designer Alexander Wang has decided to do it up this year, broadcasting his show on the American Eagle LED screen on 46th and Broadway in Times Square, ."This is a New York brand, and so much of our inspiration is from here," Wang said. "I wanted to bring it to the people of New York and make it a part of the landscape."The show will be projected at 6 p.m. on Saturday. It will also be streamed live on one hour earlier, at 5 p.m.For more Fashion Week news, visit . eGHZmFyID44mYu00M5dZQhYaAu%2FAmgJCGfYy66NCsZ2EUUrkxATVpdedrOwQXI3XX%2B5yNRDO7ET5XeB1iGgJt5ECdU5oFZYECIvEVkntrWRHbW3IytrNEqR%2Be7l59kfXhWQWiN%2FITTFFQlMQKyUnGNNJFVuJK9md8bFFGNHeB%2FhnY5%2B3%2B4IJ6%2BJocFQHUE6%2FNEW YORK, N.Y. - The audience at Alexander Wang is trained to know the best is coming last.The mostly inventive black-and-white, pieced-leather looks, many seemingly held together by fishing wire, that filled the first part of Saturday's show at New York Fashion Week would have held Wang's place as one of the princes of cool. There were sporty parkas, tops inspired by hockey jerseys and even some more refined halter dresses.Wang could have called it a collection and be done with it.However, the final parade of nine models — all wearing a cream colour — had their embroidered tank tops, pencil skirts, crewneck dresses and Bermuda shorts turn into glow-in-the-dark lightsticks when they assumed a final pose on the runway and the lights went out.Wang also created a stir by having model Liberty Ross — the wife of the director who Kristen Stewart had an affair with — walk the runway, along with the likes of Erin Wasson. Jennifer Aniston fiance actor Justin Theroux sat in the front row along with rapper A$AP Rocky.In his notes, Wang said his spring collection aimed for "a linear quality" without too much sharpness."The juxtaposition of tension and suspension are captured between structure and fluidity while dissected pieces build on a new silhouette, which embodies lightness and delicacy," he said.While the final results seemed simple at times, Wang explained that garments went through much fabric manipulation to get graphic results that didn't seem harsh."In such a short time, Alex has redefined urban utility," observed Laura Brown, Harper's Bazaar features and special projects director. "There's always a sexiness to his clothes, but this season he brought a glamour, too."She picked a cut-out silver dress as her favourite. Meanwhile, model Maria Bradley said backstage before the show that she'd like to take home the silver T-shirt and black shorts she was to wear on the catwalk. "I wore his clothes from last season today. His clothes are the best!"For the last few seasons, designers have dipped and dabbed in their primary coloured paint pots and mixed around with hues and shades until their collections became bright, bubbling specimens of vibrant colour. But now, the Crayola boxes have been stacked away, paint palettes washed and prepped for a new age; the age of the return of monochrome.Barneys New York The Window:Before we headed off for the Europe shows, we created a final recap of the most relevant trends from this past New York Fashion Week. Sporty flourishes, luxe fur, a grunge moment: this is what fall 2011 holds in store. See for yourself below.We can't wait to share what we see in Europe! Stay tuned...- The Barneys Fashion Team It looks like a one shouldered sports bra with a very odd and ill fitting back to it. WHY is the fabric hanging down on the right side of her back. What's the purpose of that? Is it supposed to attach to the high-waisted girdle she's wearing? From the back it looks like a pair of men's briefs worn wrong...We've teamed up with Greta Larkins, the genius behind the brilliant Tumblr in a weekly series of animated fashion shots.This week, FashGif takes on this sexy white dress from . Now those are some that would impress . Want more? Be sure to check out Stylelist on , and .For previous Fashion Gifs, take a peek in our gallery below: We were backstage at Mercedes Benz Fashion Week with makeup artists to get the scoop on the beauty looks you'll be obsessing about this fall. This Thursday's A/W 2011 shows for Vena Cava, Christian Siriano and Tadashi Shoji were a study in freshness -- get ready for natural skin and relaxed "paint with your fingers" eyes. At the inspiration was rock 'n' roll and androgeny. The muse: Fiona Apple. "The makeup serves as an accessory," explains lead makeup artist Christian McCulloch. It's a jewel sparking from the darkness of the mostly black collection and the daring look of long night out. Models at complimented the collection's jewel tones with a natural look consisting of "glowing from within" cream blushes and a wash of café au lait shadow that seamlessly wings towards the temples.Artists at kept the skin very clean and brushed the eyebrows upwards for a full, Brooke Shields look. Mascara was applied to top and bottom lashes, lids were made dewy and youthful with clear gloss, and lips were finished with MAC's Till Tomorrow mauve cream lipstick by dabbing it on with fingers to reveal a more natural stain. What do you think of this season's looks? Happy Fashion Week!Watch the artists in action:Follow Anna De Souza on Twitter:It's not surprising that once again rapper has stirred things up in the world of pop culture. Not only does she have a running list of feuds with fellow artists , and (to name a few), but according to the British fashion magazine , her August cover has already been banned in seven different countries. Just been told our upcoming cover has been banned from 7 countries so far. Thank God for the Internet, huh?— Dazed and Confused (@DazedMagazine) The cover, which has yet to be seen, features Banks "posing with an inflated bright pink condom between her lips like a giant cigar," . The magazine's headline reads, "Azealia Banks Blows Up."The ordeal doesn't seem to have Banks batting an eye though, after all she's quite the cover girl this month.I'm on the covers of Vibe,& Dazed and Confused Magazines this month! ^-^— ? YUNG RAPUNXEL ? (@AZEALIABANKS) [Via ]eGHZmFyID44mYu00M5dZQhYaAu%2FAmgJCGfYy66NCsZ2EUUrkxATVpY3ZqY8OFl1%2FoXLYoQU8PvUL2Z1kZDKyyoA05FaNsFcAC5NV9gVopOsWvOjkA%2Fbw9Fv1DcoUwx8n4kIuB5Ua5hfpX3jCUjpesA7EFvdsOSuTBc8OfyGzw3GYqrfjYvGOR8QAEXbdlMhNIt's Friday, y'all! Pick up your spirits and get pumped for with this new infectious video from T by Alexander Wang. , bringing her youthful energy to his new T Fall 2012 ads., Banks' T by Alexander Wang video is shot in (mostly) black and white with split screens, close-ups and lots of hair whipping back and forth. Banks raps "Van Vogue” from "1991," her recently released EP, and swishes around in what are surely soft-as-butter tees and tanks made by Wang. The Wang-Banks pairing makes sense, and not only because Wang has previously cast offbeat, of-the-moment hip hop stars for his T campaigns (Santigold, Die Antwoord, etc). Banks is coming up the fashion ranks, with , and .And now she's officially a campaign girl. Check out the fun new video, above. Do you like the new spot?Want more? Be sure to check out HuffPost Style on , , and .Also on HuffPost: was going to perform at the prestigious ... it looks like the honor might be going to newcomer Azealia Banks. of a few telling , in which Banks name-dropped just enough to break the news:I can't wait for the MET ball! I'm going as Alexander Wang's date. He custom made my outfit and shoes ! !!!! It's soooo hot !I've Been invited to Perform for PRADA next week in NYC! Gonna b so lush !! Let's see what new songs I debut there! #metball2012From which we can conclude the following:-- Azealia Banks will perform at some point in the Gala, even if not as the sole performer of the night (an honor previously bestowed upon Rihanna, Kanye West, Lady Gaga, etc.).-- Following with a gig at fashion's biggest party? Banks is the industry's newest musical fave.-- , on the other hand, seems to be drawing to a swift close, .-- are looking less and less true. Whether or not Banks is the only performer at next Monday's ball, she'll still be walking the red carpet with Alexander Wang on her arm. Not bad for the hip-hop singer who debuted her first single only four months ago. UPDATE, 5/1/12: Seems as though Banks' spot at the Met may not be a done deal... or at least not ideal. The New York Post points out that as of this morning, . In addition, a source tells the Post that to perform at the Gala, which makes sense given during Spring 2012 fashion week. But apparently Minaj never signed the papers and left the Gala organizers, Vogue included, in the lurch. All will be revealed on Monday!Can't wait till Monday? See what everyone wore at last year's 2011 Met Gala, below.... NEW YORK, N.Y. - Bikini season may be over, but this is no time to tone down the workout. Many of the styles on the runway at New York Fashion Week flash a bit of skin here or there: bare midriffs, cutout backs, keyhole necklines.The silhouettes in spring previews that entered a fourth day Sunday aren't necessarily skin tight, but it's not a season of full-on floaty frocks, either."We've gone so far away from overt sexiness, but the reality is, sex sells. At some point the shopper wants to be sexy," said Hal Rubenstein, fashion director of InStyle magazine. "Illusion fabric on a shoulder or a little skin showing on a midriff gives you a hint without giving it all away."Victoria Beckham and DKNY continued the trend with bra-style tops, while many of Alexander Wang's looks were seemingly held together by fishing wire. Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week continues through Thursday before the fashion crowd heads to London, Milan and Paris.ZAC POSENThe audience had started griping about Zac Posen's delayed start, but as soon as Naomi Campbell took that first step on the runway, there was a collective "aha."And then there was an "ooh."The spring collection was being modeled on the terrace of Lincoln Center's Avery Fisher Hall by many of the models who helped put Posen on the map a decade ago. Campbell, Erin O'Connor, Karolina Kurkova and Alek Wek were among the catwalkers who'd strut for the newbie because they were such fans of his masterfully made clothes.Fast-forward to the new season, and Posen put them in romantic, glamorous gowns with the intricate, detailed, show-stopping sort of details that first won them over. Campbell wore a corseted daytime dress with a swingy dance hemline, setting the tone. The best of the gowns had either tons of tiny tulle pintucks, mermaid silhouettes or candy-ribbon peplums.DIANE VON FURSTENBERGDiane von Furstenberg called her spring collection "Palazzo." ''La Dolce Vita" also would have worked.The muse has "the polish of a princess and the heart of a gypsy," von Furstenberg said, and she travels from Rome to Marrakesh and then off to Jaipur, India.She takes with her on this journey tunics and skinny-leg pants — practically silk leggings — to wear during the day, and a blood-orange scarf gown attached to a silver choker and cuff bracelets for the night. She brings her kiwi-green gown with a cutout neckline just in case she'll need it for a last-minute, black-tie invitation.The trip is definitely more play than work, a bit of a departure for von Furstenberg whose label often is the workhorse of a career woman. But these clothes fuel the fantasy she might be having at her desk.Google co-founder Sergey Brin was on hand and Von Furstenberg and some of the models wore Google Glasses that were collecting video for a project to be released on Google-Plus and YouTube on Thursday.VICTORIA BECKHAMVictoria Beckham's show not only looks like her signature pulled-together, well-edited style, but it feels like her, too.She's the thoughtful hostess with waiters offering morning juice to the crowd at the New York Public Library, but she keeps the guest list very tight. She's one of the biggest draws of the week, but there's no frenzy of paparazzi photographers. (Husband David Beckham, however, did take some photos from his seat.)Beckham said she checks — or doublechecks — every look to make sure "it looks good from every angle."The clothes for spring had a delicacy that she said was new for her this season, although the clothes remained substantial and structured. It was the touch of illusion lace, the lingerie bra top or hemline of pleated chiffon that took the edge off banded short skirts, zip-back sheaths and shirtdresses."I want to design what I want to wear," she said.DKNYWhat can stop traffic in always-bustling New York? Donna Karan in a taxicab-yellow raincoat.Karan took her bow in the eye-catcher at Sunday's DKNY New York Fashion Week preview to the delight of the fashion insiders and to the passers-by on the street who could peek in the open doors to the Chelsea studio space.She turned out a collection of mostly sporty looks featuring white perforated leather (think golf-glove material), camouflage prints, bathing suits-turned-bodysuits, bra tops and long neoprene dresses with mesh backs and sexy inserts. One of those dresses was in the same super-bright yellow that Karan wore.DKNY is supposed to dress its customers every day and for every occasion, Karan said in a post-show interview: "When I can wear the same thing as the girls on the runway, I've done my job."CHADO RALPH RUCCIColor and contemporary details took the show for the luxury line Chado by Ralph Rucci.Rucci and his team mixed old world glamour with new world touches like a swirl pattern of braiding on the sheer top of a chiffon-skirted dress. The same braiding in a riot of neon colours was used on one long sleeve of a basic black pantsuit.Crystals sparkled on a coral blouse worn with a white wrap skirt that carried the pink along the hem, separated by a single black line. The minimalist line was also used in a wearable white tunic with bright pink at the waist and hem, paired with white cigarette pants.A subtle quilting technique called trapunto lent elegance to silk faille suits and dresses made of the wetsuit material neoprene in white and bright pink.THAKOONYou've got to have a sense of humour — and some guts — to send a birdcage-print dress down the runway as the opening look for a New York Fashion Week preview.Thakoon Panichgul proved he has both.The clothes mostly were more serious than silly (Panichgul dresses the first lady sometimes, after all), but, come on, a little gold chain dangling between the beaks of two embroidered birds is certainly a conversation starter."You have to have joy in fashion," Panichgul said in a pre-show interview. "I wanted to show classic cool with whimsy."He got that with a few pieces covered in clear plastic paillettes that mirrored the flashes from photographers' cameras. Panichgul featured many layers of sometimes weighty fabrics, which gave the clothes their shape and structure while still allowing for a looser silhouette.TRACY REESETracy Reese rode her Michelle Obama bump from the Democratic National Convention to the runway, putting on a show of juxtapositions in colour, textiles and embellishments."It's still such a big high," Reese smiled backstage after the show. "It reminded us how grateful we have to be to live in this country."In a range of foliage greens, cool blues, warm ochre, tangerine and crimson, Reese put wide bands of flat industrial shingle sequins on airy loose trousers in yellows and reds.She mixed a dainty, beaded floral pattern on top of one sleeveless shift dress with zigzags outlined in black sequins against bold blue on the bottom. Reese worked in phosphorescents to embroider bright pink flowers on the top of a tunic, using the same technique in yellow in a tribal pattern at the bottom.DEREK LAMBurgundy foil paillettes for cocktails or skinny madras plaid trousers with matching jacket in a military green for the office? You can take your pick from Derek Lam's spring collection.Lam's edgy but wearable runway at a downtown venue included black lambskin halter tops and a fitted black leather dress with a pleated hem. Solid-color leather pieces, including a foldover bodice vest and matching skirt in bright blue, stood in contrast to lasercut foil accents on dresses and skirts and macrame and lace work in tweeds and basketweave patterns.Lam went metallic gold for a skirt with macrame that stopped at the knee. Most hems landed just above or below the knee.ALEXANDER WANGThe audience at Alexander Wang is trained to know the best is coming last.The mostly inventive black-and-white, pieced-leather looks that filled the first part of Saturday's show would have held Wang's place as one of the princes of cool. There were sporty parkas, tops inspired by hockey jerseys and even some more refined halter dresses.Wang could have called it a collection and be done with it.However, the final parade of nine models — all wearing a cream colour — had their embroidered tank tops, pencil skirts, crewneck dresses and Bermuda shorts turn into glow-in-the-dark lightsticks when they assumed a final pose on the runway and the lights went out.Wang also created a stir by having model Liberty Ross — the wife of the director Kristen Stewart had an affair with — walk the runway, along with the likes of Erin Wasson. Jennifer Aniston's fiance actor Justin Theroux sat in the front row along with rapper A$AP Rocky.MONIQUE LHUILLIERThe red carpet during the upcoming Hollywood awards season could be a sea of ocean-inspired gowns if Monique Lhuillier has anything to do with it.Lhuillier, a favourite source for celebrity gowns, presented a bright aqua lace gown draped with a tulle overlay that gave the illusion of rippling waves — and so did a one-shoulder tiered gown in crepe. A sea-glass green gown was embroidered with sparkly beads and had a low, sheer illusion back, and a textured jacquard strapless gown with a trumpet hemline was an underwater kaleidoscope of colours, including blues, greens and purple."The Emmys are coming up and some of the looks have been selected so they're on hold," said Lhuillier. Bet the gold, coral-embellished sculpted gown that served as the finale is one them.JOSEPH ALTUZARRAOn a rainy Saturday night in Manhattan, fashionistas lined up patiently under umbrellas, undeterred, to catch one of the most buzz-worthy spring previews of Fashion Week: that of rising star Joseph Altuzarra.Actress Kate Bosworth, a big Altuzarra fan, kissed acquaintances and greeted Mamie Gummer, the actress daughter of Meryl Streep. The NBA's Tyson Chandler posed for photos not far from actress Jessica Chastain.The looks that greeted them on the runway were a combination of the very casual — navy-and-white striped cotton jackets and overcoats, for example, evoking kids' overalls — and the glamorous, in the form of gold fringes on everything from skirts to tanks, and crystal-encrusted garments like dramatic scarves draped high around the neck. Workday looks of simple cotton graduated to looks that suddenly shimmered and glistened under the lights, occasionally perhaps a bit blindingly."He's going sky-high," said Nina Garcia, the "Project Runway" judge. "A real original."HERVE LEGERDesigner Max Azria's bandage dresses for Herve Leger are seriously flattering — you can see that best not on the models, who frankly would look good in anything, but on the fashionistas in the audience at his shows.But each show needs to have a new theme, and for Azria's Spring 2013 preview on Saturday, it was something unusual: Quilt-making. From Alabama.One wouldn't ordinarily think of quilt-making from the American South as having much to do with the tight, figure-enhancing dresses that Azria does so well, but the patchwork designs made many of the dresses on display very pretty and colorful, if on a few occasions a bit busy.Particularly appealing was a blue sapphire high-neck bandage dress with "passementerie" embroidery and applique. Another feature of Azria's on full display here were his leather harnesses, in black or tan, around the neck or in the form of a corset.___AP writers Leanne Italie and Jocelyn Noveck contributed to this report.___Follow AP Fashion on Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/AP_FashionThe came and went, with dozens of stars walking the treacherous Metropolitan Museum steps. But after two hours of the step-and-repeat routine, was nowhere to be seen. We waited and waited, for at least 30 minutes. Maybe Blue Ivy couldn't get a sitter? Maybe she and Jay-Z were simply watching the livestream from their Tribeca pad? But of course, in Beyonce came, accompanied up the stairs by none other than Andre Leon Talley. And the dress was worth the wait: a dramatic black lace Givenchy confection, almost completely sheer from top to bottom. Seriously, you could see the outline of Bey's entire lower body. Did Tina Knowles have a say in this?It was a much racier, more complicated look than we were expecting -- and we can't decide how we feel about it. Check Beyonce's dramatic entrance. Do you love this look?Also on HuffPost: eGHZmFyID44mYu00M5dZQhYaAu%2FAmgJCGfYy66NCsZ2EUUrkxATVpY3ZqY8OFl1%2FoXLYoQU8PvUL2Z1kZDKyyoA05FaNsFcAC5NV9gVopOsWvOjkA%2Fbw9Fv1DcoUwx8n4kIuB5Ua5hfpX3jCUjpesA7EFvdsOSuTBc8OfyGzw3GYqrfjYvGOR8QAEXbdlMhNeGHZmFyID44mYu00M5dZQhYaAu%2FAmgJCGfYy66NCsZ2EUUrkxATVpY3ZqY8OFl1%2FoXLYoQU8PvUL2Z1kZDKyyoA05FaNsFcAC5NV9gVopOsWvOjkA%2Fbw9Fv1DcoUwx8n4kIuB5Ua5hfpX3jCUjpesA7EFvdsOSuTBc8OfyGzw3GYqrfjYvGOR8QAEXbdlMhNRemember all the way back to 2009 when sent sweatshirt-wearing models down the runway wearing ? And then suddenly the was back. Or so many claimed. But really, it never went away. That's the beauty of the braid: it's eternally cool, and luckily for us, here to stay. A couple weeks ago was roadtripping around New Mexico for our nationwide series, . Besides returning with some pretty awesome stories and a nice haul of , she's been wearing lots of around the office: , and the . (Anya introduces us to some of her muses in the slideshow below.)Being around so much braiding inspired us to take a closer look at the style. Different cultures worldwide have always embraced the , considering it a highly symbolic part of their identity. Various iterations have been named for the country that popularized it. See: the French, Dutch and Swiss braids. The styles also seem to be decade-specific: the hippie '60s saw many a double braid, while fishtail braids were big in the '80s. For better or worse. In other words, the braid is The Great Unifier, people! Here are some of its best manifestations...and some of its not-so-best...woven into one slideshow.Want more? Be sure to check out HuffPost Style on , , and .When , everyone pays attention. Saturday night, the former Vogue Paris editor feted with a long gown-only dress code (she opted for Alaïa, and let's just say we were dressed much more modestly), Ryuichi Sakamot piano performance (which was followed by a DJ set that included Kanye West and other Top 40 hits), and, of course, a lot of models. A lot. , the magazine's first cover girl, was in attendance, looking glamorous and sultry in a low cut gown with smokey eye makeup and tousled hair. After spotting Upton by the front entrance, we realized that this party had become a test: How many supermodels do you recognize? We planted ourselves by the front door and started playing. ? There. ? Right next to her. ? ? ? sporting a ? You get the idea.Although the models roamed throughout the party, Carine Roitfeld was still queen (she even upstaged in an ). Check out the photos below to see more from the Mercedes Benz and Belvedere-hosted launch of CR Fashion Book at The Frick Collection in NYC, and let us know which model you think had the best style.Want more? Be sure to check out HuffPost Style on , , and .Last season it was carnival games, the year before that .This Fashion Week, Alexander Wang threw his legendary after-party with a frat theme, complete with glow sticks, Jello shots, Budweiser and keg stands. Oh yeah, and a surprise performance by Tyler the Creator. As one of the hottest parties of each New York Fashion Week, Wang's fete brought out downtown's coolest kids. This included Christina Ricci, who caught our attention in a va-va-voom dress. With blunt bangs and dark, kohl-rimmed eyes, Ricci went all-out sexy for the occasion.Take a look below at the "Pan Am" actress's look and tell us: hit or miss? Then check out the rest of the party people. LOS ANGELES — Courtney Love's former assistant is suing over unpaid wages and claims the rocker made unethical requests such as instructing her to hire a hacker and falsify legal letters.Jessica Labrie filed the wrongful termination, wage and breach of contract lawsuit in Los Angeles on Tuesday.The suit states Labrie worked as Love's administrative assistant for about a year in 2010 and 2011, but was fired after complaining she was owed thousands in unpaid wages and expenses for business trips. The lawsuit claims Labrie suffered from headaches, insomnia and other medical conditions as a result of Love's conduct.Her attorney, Joshua Gruenberg, says Love wanted a hacker to change records to businesses she owned or believed she owned, but Labrie refused.Attempts to find a current representative for Love were unsuccessful.Also on HuffPost:eGHZmFyID44mYu00M5dZQhYaAu%2FAmgJCGfYy66NCsZ2EUUrkxATVpY3ZqY8OFl1%2FoXLYoQU8PvUL2Z1kZDKyyoA05FaNsFcAC5NV9gVopOsWvOjkA%2Fbw9Fv1DcoUwx8n4kIuB5Ua5hfpX3jCUjpesA7EFvdsOSuTBc8OfyGzw3GYqrfjYvGOR8QAEXbdlMhN,08.27.2012Manager, ShutterstockHow do you find clients? Should you specialize in one area? What should you charge? For most freelance designers, comfort comes with experience. Here are five tips from design pros about how to turn your personal business into a thriving enterprise.Designer and CFDA President DIane von Furstenberg revealed that she was once rejected by newcomer Alexander Wang when she asked him to do some sweaters for her when he had just graduated. According , von Furstenberg told Interview magazine: "For the purpose of the story, I want the readers to know that you [Wang] told me, 'No, I'm not interested in doing anything for you.' I said, 'OK...' And that was the first time I remember encountering the name Alex Wang--a rejection.'" But the pair got past it, and von Furstenberg now serves as Wang's mentor. She also interviewed Wang for the March issue of the magazine. Kitten heels have a bad reputation. Notoriously unforgiving and frequently spotted on schoolgirls at their first social, your scepticism is justified. As the contrary fashion merry-go-round spins, prepare to embrace a new kind of shoe, a whole load less kitteny. Out with the old, in with the...old. You know the drill. The demi-heel, to give it a more satisfying name, is like the lazy lioness- elegant and refined but packs a punch under pressure. It is cooler, fresher and much more, dare I say, comfortable. Compared to the Noughties' fantastical high heels, now relegated to the collecting rings of WAG-land, a deserving and hard-working lower height has won the silken vote. With it a significantly lower chance of developing sore arches and a twisted ankle, it sounds like a no brainer, right?Before you decide to write this off with the conviction that it wouldn't make it past New Look's front doors, think again. Amidst Dior's ballet shoe heels, Zanotti's velvet rock baroque lace ups and Marc Jacobs' so-wrong-they're-right stacked loafers, there are some unusually useful shoes for autumn. (Dior)A backlash against years of altitude sickness produced exciting results all round. Carven delivered floral elegance with bow-adorned sling backs; Alexander Wang merged gritty glamour with a power ankle strap to create the best nude pair of demi-heels on the autumn scene. Valentino rose to the top as they thoroughly enjoyed their fashion moment. Featuring an ankle strap for absolute elegance, sparkling Swarovskis for your playful side and that effortless femininity that comes hand in hand with Valentino, my feet are cooing at the very sight of them.(Valentino, Carven, Alexander Wang)The demi-heel is part of the approaching season's understated, 'easy' fashion aesthetic. It is more grown up, more like the veteran than the kitten, and it has taken shoes with it. Match your mid-height ankle-strapped with a pair of skinny, cropped trousers, and you are, pretty much, sorted. The demi-heel tames our morning footwear crises and puts the last piece of the exclusive Parisian-chic jigsaw in place. Swap your rush-hour-only arch damaging ballet flats and office-based Louboutins for a pair of shoes you can wear all day. I promise, your feet will thank you, and so will your purse.(Chloe) Follow Eleanor Doughty on Twitter:For the last few seasons, designers have dipped and dabbed in their primary coloured paint pots and mixed around with hues and shades until their collections became bright, bubbling specimens of vibrant colour. But now, the Crayola boxes have been stacked away, paint palettes washed and prepped for a new age; the age of the return of monochrome. Those in love with the colours of the last few seasons fear not, this doesn't mean a return to black as the 'new black', no; it more wholly represents shades and the tonal values we learnt in primary school art lessons. Instead of reaching for the poster paints, picture a Dulux colour chart, and the deliberation between 'Dublin Bay' and 'Woodland Fern', the most minuscule of shade differences. Paint your own palette in shades this season, not with all the colours of the rainbow. The rainbow has played this year's final act , so we welcome in the shading tones. The coming season's palette is simplified; texture and fabric take centre stage in this production, and the creators are the players.This colour matching revolution appeared in Alexander Wang's dark and twisty Autumn Winter 2012 collection, comprising strong burgundy ensembles where tonal leathers were paired with chain mail-alike textures, long sleeves and high-slit pencil skirts. The tonal method is not new to the house of Wang, his Spring Summer 2012 collection exhibited almost dip dye like design, transitional light blue to navy manifested itself in one piece ensembles paired with white shoes. The colours of the collection could not be further from the children's art show colours of Meadham Kirchhoff, who plastered on their primary coloured, over kitsched up fabrics like it was going out of fashion, ironically. A whole material store of fabric samples were presented at Meadham Kirchhoff where collections season and season play against assumed industry approval, nevertheless attaining all necessary media exposure. The bright and shiny Meadham Kirchhoff duo couldn't be further from Wang's tough street-girl style, athletic summer collection that comprised shades and block outfits; a whole new kind of playtime was on the Kirchhoff cards with absolutely nothing getting in its way.Many of us are drawn to what can be described as 'simple chic'- the art of not wearing too many colours. Women of a certain age might shudder at the now commercialised-Mary Katrantzou-inspired, big, brash and in your face floral trend that has swept through the high street like London's very own tornado; younger fashionistas choose grown up high street stores such as Cos to indulge their colourful yet contained sensibilities. We find it very easy to slip back into black, keeping it safe as a comfort blanket; colour is becoming a big deal. Embrace it.Neon touches at the high street Autumn Winter 2012 previews remind us that we can all wear colour, however old we are and for most occasions. In Sex and the City, Carrie Bradshaw stepped out in close to fancy-dress-farcical outfits to much applaud; while her critics wrinkled their noses, a consequent revolution brewed, one that has now reached the surface. While I'm in favour of colour blocking, mass colour maturely combined with Meadham Kirchhoff inspired kitsch that brightens any rainy shopping street, I'm looking forward to texture time. Garments are endlessly more desirable on the best texture; cashmere feels just that much better, strong tweed is noticeable anywhere, and the perfect silk is just divine. A pleasing texture is irresistible, and the tonal shades of the coming season will give them their own lease of life. Here's to looking, and feeling, fabulous. Follow Eleanor Doughty on Twitter:I've fallen, head over staggeringly high heels, in love. Again. This is becoming too regular an occurrence. Temporarily blinded by a uniform of black and grey, Resort 2013 has reminded me of my love for fabrics. As a staunch lover of block colours and tones, as you'll know by now, sometimes prints, embroidery and embellishment can be terrifying. The printed parts of my wardrobe are frequently tried on and almost instantly discarded when I realise that I can't make it work. Ever. It's a disappointing feeling in the morning when this well rehearsed dance takes to the stage.  The black pieces sit there smirking, knowing full well that they will be next in line for another standard day at work. They don't need to worry.  When I was younger I enjoyed wearing peacock colours, but working amongst black-clad women everyday forced me into premature workwear mode. Inspired by Resort 2013, I plan to embrace prints once more. Valentino, my greatest love (yes, even trumping Chloe to the gold medal) has produced a collection that made me stop working and actually gape in amazement.  I want every single look- I could definitely make them all work, pushing through the sea of black silks and arriving triumphantly in colours and prints. Looking at the whole collection, Valentino Resort '13 is super colourful, awash with bright pea greens, fuchsia pinks, bold reds and (much to my delight) a modest selection of black, nude and grey looks.  It's quite the rainbow, dashed with enough heavy tones to keep any fashion editor happy.  The collection begins with classic Valentino, ultra delicately feminine looks, a spread of full length, mid length and trouser ensembles, the latter with a perfect peplum.  These looks are softly floral, clear in their design but resolutely delicate.  (Valentino Resort '13)Each Valentino collection is truly one to fall in love with, and Resort 2013 is no exception with pieces for all days and all nights.  Colourful structured peplums, exquisitely cut dress coats that are all ready for the Duchess of Cambridge, and without a doubt the most fabulous red carpet dresses we are likely to see on the Resort circuit this year. Where Valentino presented soft and subtle, Jonathan Saunders certainly did not shirk on his print parade.  Resort is traditionally the collection for the print, and is defined by its patterns; Saunders has gone to town with this memo.  The collection is a fusion of dip dye geometric prints, big, bold and brash florals and subtle textures, driving his beautiful message all the way home.  Saunders painted his way through the colour spectrum, not entirely drawing away from his fall colours, bursts of bright pastel blues, greens and a seasonal mix of darker shades.  Resort seems merely an updated fall collection, to much relief, full of the same gorgeous shapes and seasonally bright colours. (Jonathan Saunders Resort '13)I have no doubt that little persuasion will be necessary to blend seamlessly into prints after a long winter of ombre monochrome, Alexander Wang's dark burgundy shades and limitless beige.  Not that there's anything wrong with simple tones; I should know after all.(Images courtesy of Valentino @ Karla Otto London/Jonathan Saunders @ Starworks London) Follow Eleanor Doughty on Twitter:After weeks of promo emails and incessant PSAs, I've been fully overcome by weariness.I hadn't given Fashion's Night Out, that crazed night of celebrity rubber-necking and champagne-swilling that intends to drum up business (), much thought until the cutesy commercials arrived. The first starred the relentlessly excitable Taylor Swift and Justin Bieber. Can you hear the tweens screaming yet?Despite their youthful energy, I'm finding it hard to get psyched about the fourth annual FNO, happening tonight, September 6. with more hype than we ever thought Anna Wintour could muster, with every high-end store in New York City flowing with free champagne, free swag bags and legitimately A-list celebs. We're talking Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen, Gwen Stefani, Victoria Beckham, Justin Timberlake, Charlize Theron, Kate Hudson... Manhattan was like one big Golden Globes red carpet, but with more screaming fans.With everyone still energized from the surprise success of FNO's debut, yet decidedly less celeb-heavy. Charlize Theron reappeared, as did Halle Berry, but overall fewer stars subjected themselves to the throngs. They instead left fashion heavyweights like Heidi Klum, Naomi Campbell, Bar Rafaeli, Hamish Bowles, Simon Doonan, Alexander Wang and the Rodarte girls to draw the crowds. , supposedly the biggest one ever staged, was the main event.. Lea Michele, Joe Jonas and Justin Bieber were trotted out for the youngsters, while the older folk had to content themselves with Daniel Radcliffe, Diddy and Carmelo Anthony (yes, Harry Potter is now an adult). I did catch a glimpse of a very bleached-blonde Lindsay Lohan at Chanel, but she was rushing up the stairs and out of sight -- no autographs tonight. So what's on tap for weary cocktail-swilling, non-shopping FNO enthusiasts in 2012? Kim Kardashian, Azealia Banks, Jennifer Hudson, Whitney Port, Rachel Zoe and Nicole Richie . Get... excited?But hey, maybe I'm just being a Debbie Downer. Shopping is fun, so getting to shop for longer hours, with better music playing and someone providing you free drinks should be a good time. But the thought of fighting my way to a dressing room through a horde of college-aged girls angling for Alexa Chung's autograph just isn't my idea of a fun Thursday night. Sorry, Anna Wintour. All good things must come to an end.See highlights from Fashion's Night Out 2011: Follow Ellie Krupnick on Twitter:Burberry Prorsum coat, Blumarine top, Jeremy Scott for adidas pants, Alexander Wang shoes© Reed + RaderStella McCartney dress, Akris top, Blumarine shorts, Jeremy Scott for adidas sneakers© Reed + RaderAlexander Wang collaged jersey bodysuit, Jeremy Scott for adidas sneakers© Reed + RaderJeremy Scott for adidas jacket, Burberry Prorsum dress, 3.1 Philip Lim top© Reed + RaderStella McCartney dress, (from left) Chanel ring, Armenta rings, Stephen Webster ring, Armenta ring, New Era hat © Reed + RadereGHZmFyID44mYu00M5dZQhYaAu%2FAmgJCGfYy66NCsZ2EUUrkxATVpY3ZqY8OFl1%2FoXLYoQU8PvUL2Z1kZDKyyoA05FaNsFcAC5NV9gVopOsWvOjkA%2Fbw9Fv1DcoUwx8n4kIuB5Ua5hfpX3jCUjpesA7EFvdsOSuTBc8OfyGzw3GYqrfjYvGOR8QAEXbdlMhNi have enormous respect for daniel radcliffe (who reminds us that young people CAN have character) and everybody loves emma watson, but rupe was always my favorite in the hp movies.... Life is so lonely. I am a 50-year-old doctor. I’ve been living alone since my wife passed away 2 years ago. Maybe I should get going so I got a profile on …… r?chh??k??. ? om …… under “denver50”. It’s the best place to meet CEOs, pro athletes, doctors, lawyers, investors, entrepreneurs, beauty queens, fitness models, and Hollywood celebrities. Maybe you can take a try.it doesn't hurt that he's pretty hot, too... - but he really could use some help with his hair and clothes...We've teamed up with Greta Larkins, the genius behind the brilliant Tumblr in a weekly series of animated runway shots.In this , Larkins takes on a pink and orange metallic trench from spring 2013 collection for at . While we know the British model (and Burberry face) has a tiny waist naturally, we can't stop staring at this mesmerizing image. Is the new corset?Want more? Be sure to check out Stylelist on , and .For previous Fashion Gifs, take a peek in our gallery below: my particular favorites from paris were rick owens and ann demeulemeester. beautiful, mysterious and flattering. i would buy everything from the rick owens collection and just float through life. i loved the muted colors and( black).so much of paris was derivative and garish(marc jacobs for louis vuitton),....like it was all done before (and it was)and the patterns were migraine inducing.and can anyone explain to why in certain collections (givenchy, miu miu, marc jacobs) the models are deliberately made to look ugly, gaunt, and very angry. i realize the clothes should speak for themselves and the models are the accessories but what is the point of the smirks and snarls??????eGHZmFyID44mYu00M5dZQhYaAu%2FAmgJCGfYy66NCsZ2EUUrkxATVpY3ZqY8OFl1%2FoXLYoQU8PvUL2Z1kZDKyyoA05FaNsFcAC5NV9gVopOsWvOjkA%2Fbw9Fv1DcoUwx8n4kIuB5Ua5hfpX3jCUjpesA7EFvdsOSuTBc8OfyGzw3GYqrfjYvGOR8QAEXbdlMhNeGHZmFyID44mYu00M5dZQhYaAu%2FAmgJCGfYy66NCsZ2EUUrkxATVpY3ZqY8OFl1%2FoXLYoQU8PvUL2Z1kZDKyyoA05FaNsFcAC5NV9gVopOsWvOjkA%2Fbw9Fv1DcoUwx8n4kIuB5Ua5hfpX3jCUjpesA7EFvdsOSuTBc8OfyGzw3GYqrfjYvGOR8QAEXbdlMhNeGHZmFyID44mYu00M5dZQhYaAu%2FAmgJCGfYy66NCsZ2EUUrkxATVpY3ZqY8OFl1%2FoXLYoQU8PvUL2Z1kZDKyyoA05FaNsFcAC5NV9gVopOsWvOjkA%2Fbw9Fv1DcoUwx8n4kIuB5Ua5hfpX3jCUjpesA7EFvdsOSuTBc8OfyGzw3GYqrfjYvGOR8QAEXbdlMhNeGHZmFyID44mYu00M5dZQhYaAu%2FAmgJCGfYy66NCsZ2EUUrkxATVpY3ZqY8OFl1%2FoXLYoQU8PvUL2Z1kZDKyyoA05FaNsFcAC5NV9gVopOsWvOjkA%2Fbw9Fv1DcoUwx8n4kIuB5Ua5hfpX3jCUjpesA7EFvdsOSuTBc8OfyGzw3GYqrfjYvGOR8QAEXbdlMhNRachel Moskowitz, a senior at Boston University, caught a bus down to New York last Wednesday for an event that could make or break her career: Fashion Week. Moskowitz's ticket to the weeklong industry showcase was an internship backstage with the womenswear designer Rebecca Taylor. The public relations major planned seating charts, stuffed gift bags and steamed clothes in preparation for the fashion show on Friday."I actually got to watch the show -- I didn't have to work once it started," Moskowitz said. "And to be able to say you worked fashion week is so cool."Moskowitz is one of hundreds of unpaid workers behind the scene at New York Fashion Week, running through Thursday all over Manhattan. She's trading long hours of manual and clerical labor for the chance to be in the thick of glamour. In the summer months, Moskowitz and her fellow interns will fill the offices of magazines, PR firms and production companies, hoping that their hard work will eventually lead to coveted fashion jobs.Yet the legality of such internships has come under scrutiny. On February 1, Xuedan "Diana" Wang, a former Harper's Bazaar intern, filed a lawsuit against publishing behemoth Hearst Corporation. The class action, a first for the fashion industry, seeks damages for Wang's five months of unpaid labor in the magazine's accessories department. Two new interns joined the case last week, according to Wang's attorney Elizabeth Wagoner."We were completely overworked," Wang, a 28 year old Ohio native, told The Huffington Post in an interview. "It was an outrageous burden for a bunch of interns."At Harper's Bazaar, Wang worked 40 to 55 hours a week as a "head intern," supervising eight other unpaid workers as they carried bags of clothes to and from PR firms, effectively serving as a messenger service for the magazine.Wang believes that her experience at Harper's Bazaar wasn't an internship, but a job that deserved compensation. She claims that the work did not comply with the U.S. Department of Labor's .Hearst, meanwhile, maintains that Wang's internship was perfectly legal. "The internship programs at each of our magazines are designed to enhance the educational experience of students who are receiving academic credit for their participation, and are otherwise fully in compliance with applicable laws," a company spokeswoman said in a statement. "We intend to vigorously defend this matter."Wang, who had already graduated from Ohio State when she began the internship, received course credit by contacting the office of continuing studies and paying around $700 for two additional credit hours to be added to her transcript.Despite the credit hours, Wang maintains that the internship was the "very opposite of any kind of educational experience."'GET ANOTHER INTERNSHIP'The Department of Labor's guidelines for internships at for-profit companies, issued in April 2010, were intended to rein in the expanding intern workforce, currently beyond the reach of other labor laws. The guidelines have yet to be referenced in court, and in Wang's case, they stand to influence any judicial decision on whether she should in fact receive compensation for her five months at Harper's Bazaar.Internships, according to the guidelines, must be similar to "educational" training, must provide no "immediate advantage" to employers and must not displace regular salaried employees. If internships fail to meet these requirements, they are considered work, and subject to regulations like minimum wage.According to Wang, her internship at Harper's Bazaar consisted primarily of sending other unpaid interns to pick up bags of clothes from PR firms. "It was all very menial," she said. "We were barely supervised."The work environment was harried and fast-paced. As "head intern," Wang worked long hours, waiting for interns to return so she could organize hundreds of items of clothing and check them in to the magazine's closet. If something went wrong or came in late, Wang took the blame."The other interns took the subway, for the most part," Wang said, adding that they paid their own fare. "Sometimes they had so many bags that they could barely walk on the sidewalk."Wang, who hails from a small town in Southwestern Ohio, graduated in 2010 with a degree in strategic communication. After saving up money by working on her own for a year, she moved to to New York to start her career in fashion. "It was my childhood dream," she said. "Harper's Bazaar was my favorite magazine growing up."When her internship ended in December, Wang hoped to receive a letter of recommendation from her employer that would lead to a paying job. Her supervisor, the Senior Accessories Editor for the magazine, declined to write a letter, bringing up mistakes Wang had made in giving instructions to other interns."It was a very stressful job," Wang said in her defense. "There was always a shortage of labor ... I thought about quitting but I wanted to see it through to the end because I was desperate for that recommendation.""[My supervisor's] advice was to get another internship," Wang said. 'I had blown through thousands providing a service to this magazine ... It was devastating."Wang's supervisor did not return a request for comment for this article.SHAKY GUIDELINESWang's experience was not unique -- fashion internships, like those in some other industries, regularly require interns to make deliveries, do clerical work and stay long hours.Companies hope that course credit from schools will stand as acceptable proof that the internships are "educational," and that they can therefore continue to offer them without pay under Department of Labor guidelines.For some interns still in school, this works out well: Moskowitz, for example, saved $8,000 on tuition by using her summer internship at Rebecca Taylor toward graduation requirements. Others, like Wang, are forced to shell out money themselves just to receive letters of credit.It remains to be seen whether a letter of credit will stand as proof that an internship is "educational" in court. Wang's case is only the second case to deal explicitly with unpaid internships or reference the Department of Labor's guidelines. The first, filed in late 2011 against Fox Searchlight by a former intern, also uses Outten & Golden LLP, Wang's lawyers, as representation.Wang first considered suing a few weeks after her internship ended, when she read about the Fox Searchlight case on the Internet. That led her to Department of Labor's guidelines."As soon as I read [the guidelines] I knew immediately that what they had us doing wasn't appropriate," she said.'HARD TO TURN THEM AWAY'The fashion world is taking a "wait and see" approach to the lawsuit, according to Susan Scafidi, founder of the Fashion Law Institute and professor at Fordham University. "No one is changing their programs just yet as that would be an advance admission of guilt," she said. "But there is some quiet attention to exactly what kind of work interns are doing."Many interns, like Moskowitz, are thrilled to get professional experience and to be part of the fashion world, no matter if the work is difficult. "It gives you a great name to put on your resume," said Moskowitz. "Internships are hard. You have to be dedicated ... In my opinion, when you sign up, you know what you're getting into."Internships have long been a part of the fashion world, according to Scafidi, and are viewed as important vocational training by members of the industry. "Fashion has always been place where people can learn on the job," she said. "There's an effort to make sure interns get a valuable experience."Only recently, in the current , have internships begun to generate debate. With only 54 percent of 18- to 24-year-olds currently employed, according to a recent Pew Research Center study, internships are replacing entry level jobs.Many recent grads are now willing to take any work experience, paid or otherwise. Aliza Bogner, vice president of Human Resources at Alison Brod, a fashion PR firm, says that her company received more than 50 emails this year from people offering to volunteer at fashion week, many of them college grads."We didn't take any of them," said Bogner. "Ever since we heard about the new labor laws, we don't accept interns without course credit."Bogner questions whether other PR firms are as careful about the guidelines. "When you have people who graduated college and are begging to work for free, and they need the experience on their resumes, it's hard to turn them away," she said.The proliferation of internships also raises a class issue -- for the most part, only children with wealthy parents can afford to spend much of their early twenties working unpaid jobs.Wang acknowledges that money played a big role in her decision to pursue legal action. "All of this wouldn't have bothered me so much if I had had more money," she said. "If I could just do another internship so flippantly like [my supervisor] told me to, it would be fine."Susan Scafidi thinks that Wang and her lawyers' biggest challenge will be getting more interns to come forward and join the class action suit. Interns who can afford to work for free have little incentive to sue and risk being blacklisted for jobs.As they stand, the Department of Labor's guidelines are largely up to interns to enforce. With no legal body currently investigating company practices, interns must come forward and speak about violations for any changes to occur."In terms of workplace abuses, I don't know if interns are high on the Department of Labor's list," Scafidi said.Wang herself acknowledges that she has probably botched all chances of a fashion career. Still, she hopes that the high-profile nature of her case will help shift the climate of the industry for other interns."There are so many people like me who want to be a part [of this industry] so badly," she said. "They deserve a fair chance."Have you worked as an unpaid intern? Tell us about your experience by emailing David and Victoria both look adorable. But watching them both in this video, I can feel the tension from David when the interviewer asked Victoria about the success of clothing line ... it may be just me but do I sense some resentment there? I just hope not because they are one of those couples I'm really rooting for - especially with their 3 gorgeous boys and super cute baby! I think that Victoria needs to devote some time now for her husband. He probably feels neglected ... after all boys will always be boys.Click here to leave a comment.HuffPost High School welcomes a lively, thoughtful debate in the comment section. Keep in mind that the articles here are penned by young authors, so please keep criticism respectful, and help us to keep this a safe and supportive place for writers of all ages to contribute.eGHZmFyID44mYu00M5dZQhYaAu%2FAmgJCGfYy66NCsZ2EUUrkxATVpY3ZqY8OFl1%2FoXLYoQU8PvUL2Z1kZDKyyoA05FaNsFcAC5NV9gVopOsWvOjkA%2Fbw9Fv1DcoUwx8n4kIuB5Ua5hfpX3jCUjpesA7EFvdsOSuTBc8OfyGzw3GYqrfjYvGOR8QAEXbdlMhNeGHZmFyID44mYu00M5dZQhYaAu%2FAmgJCGfYy66NCsZ2EUUrkxATVpY3ZqY8OFl1%2FoXLYoQU8PvUL2Z1kZDKyyoA05FaNsFcAC5NV9gVopOsWvOjkA%2Fbw9Fv1DcoUwx8n4kIuB5Ua5hfpX3jCUjpesA7EFvdsOSuTBc8OfyGzw3GYqrfjYvGOR8QAEXbdlMhNNo, No, No...this is all wrong...New York fashion is acting like America is still an elite superpower....the fashionistas must not have got the memo about Republicans fashioning America into a third world country like Greece. All these beautiful people, dressed in all these expensive materials, struttin down the runway like they own it (actually, some Hedge Fund Manager owns it). Clearly misled.1. The new style is "Austerity Chic"...featuring2. Burlap bag dresses3. Style composites from the dumpster...dirty is the new clean...4. Used Tire slat shoes5. Dresses looking like barrels6. Small sizes reflecting the weight loss about to be imposed on America's middle class7. The "Homeless Look" for elder women with no home once they lose their social security8. Styles for much younger women no longer attending public education9. There was lots of black but not a single iron cross for accessorizing10. The "Mitt's Assistant" look for paranoid people about to be fired (Mitt loves to fire people) which makes them homeless (#7) and undernourished (#6)11. "Mittens" with holes in the fingertips12. Fewer styles for the elderly who will be dieing early when they lose their Medicare13. So next year's Fashion Week can be more in theme "Down & Out in New York" with a subtext "Poverty reaches the Mittle Class".After all, if you can look good in Mitt's policy rags, you can look good in anything.We already know . So we're a bit stunned to learn that Hermès itself has been engaging in a bit of fashion arson, torching its own products behind the scenes., Mulberry's Emma Hill says Hermès disposes of any imperfect bags by burning them. Referring to the high standard of quality kept at the French company, :"A friend who was working at Hermès said that if there was even the most minor imperfection on a bag they would take it out the back and burn it -- no compromise."Be still our Birkin-loving hearts! We nearly had a heart attack seeing , not to mention . But the idea of Hermès incinerating its own leather beauties just makes us sad inside. But the corporate policy may be par for the course, as a source also tell us that Alexander Wang may have done the same. Years ago, when tweaking the design of the trademark Rocco bag, the company decided to discontinue all versions without a shoulder strap, leaving hundreds of strapless Rocco bags sitting in the warehouse. Some were given to interns but others, sources say, were considered for burning. We wonder how many other fashion companies do the same...If there is a Purse Heaven, we bet there are hundreds of Kellys, Birkins and Roccos resting there in peace. See what other dishy deets Emma Hill told the Telegraph at Telegraph.co.uk.See totally intact Hermes bags on the arms of celebs:Want more? Be sure to check out HuffPost Style on , , and .I shrugged off years of social anxieties as I slipped into my seat at Pier 94 on Saturday night, set to watch Alexander Wang parade his new duds in front of fashion's cool kids. The scene before the show could easily be likened to a high school hallway before class, if you're into analogies -- Anna Wintour and Franca Sozzani catching up, Alicia Keys and Kanye West being mobbed, Emmanuelle Alt attempting to walk through without causing too much commotion, The Sartorialist, Garance Dore and Bill Cunningham up-downing each passerby, the rest of us Tweeting away, as I imagine most teenagers do these days to avoid looking entirely awkward. I was even wrapped up in (arguably bringing back) a jacket I purchased in tenth grade...but that's another style story all together. Eventually, a procession of models started pounding along the floor to a remix of Prodigy's "Breathe," a song incidentally at the peak of its popularity when I bought my outerwear in question. The gals breezed by in sheer shirts, fur-wrapped sunglasses, layered ponchos and metallic high-heeled penny loafers, and I felt at ease with what will ultimately be my fall 2011 wardrobe. Confession time: despite the three-digit number in my bank account, I'm the ultimate Alex Wang fan girl, but who isn't these days? Everyone wants to be his best friend...I mean, wear his clothes.All images by Getty or AP.Follow Hilary Moss on Twitter:This chart is part of Mother Jones' investigation into Walmart's much-praised green makeover, for which reporter Andy Kroll traveled to China, the home of many of the retail giant's manufacturers. He found that although Walmart claims to be monitoring its factories' compliance with environmental and labor rules, its auditing system is plagued by corruption. What's more, many factories outsource more than half their work to "shadow" factories—unregulated operations that auditors never visit at all. To read the full story, click here. Successful actor, acclaimed artist and thriving entrepreneur. Whatever you call him, Jared Leto is a creative juggernaut, and he stopped by What's Trending last Wednesday to talk about his band's website, the HIVE, the music industry at large and shooting a video in the Arctic.Alexander WangThe menswear trend has been the dominating influencer thus far as the Fall 2010 New York collections get underway, and Alexander Wang -- always a barometer for what's cool and, more importantly, what's upcoming -- took the motif of masculinity to the apex. In a dramatic about turn from spring's athletic-inspired, sweatshirt-and-leather peppered football motif, one almost expected Michael Douglas and Martin Scorsese to be front row Saturday night, in an apparent homage to Gordon Gekko in the upcoming Wall Street 2. Not to be misconstrued, there was plenty of leather alright, perhaps most beautifully showcased in a black zip-away trench with mink back, but more on that later.The first look -- modeled by Natalia Vodianova, who opened and closed the show -- set the theme for the rest of the 41-look stunner: a wool pinstripe Inverness blazer paired with a matching cropped vest and mini skirt with blazer detail cast in a black and Merlot (not burgundy, mind you) color combination and paired with a matching pinstripe backpack. Sorry Dolly, but these girls aren't working 9-to-5 boardroom jobs. That notion was dispelled as Wang continued to prove his creativity with this collection -- beautifully evident by a charcoal, wool, pinstripe minidress trimmed ever-so-delicately with lace detail (this time think less Michael Douglas and more Demi Moore in Disclosure). Back-to-back camel outerwear looks, meanwhile, both of which -- one a clergy cloak with cut-out sleeves and the other, a structured and boxy coat -- were right on point and utterly gorgeous, made for a refreshing momentary palette cleanser.Accessories came in the form of chunky loafer boots, frame clutches, bondage-esque backpacks, velvet-trimmed sunglasses and charcoaled 18-Karat gold rings while peppered throughout were tailcoats, cropped blazers (some featuring a beautiful Swarovski pearl pinstripe), tiger face macramé tops (an ode to the Chinese Lunar calendar, perhaps?) and mohair shrugs -- all the essentials for a Master of the Universe in the making, natch -- that truly pushed the traditional banker's suit to the edge. Yes, there was plenty of skin exposed, juxtaposed with thigh-high legwarmers that left some things to the imagination. In contrast to the traditional menswear fabrics, leather notwithstanding, Wang also lobbied hard for velvet. That translated into a series of ruched LBDs perfect for masterminding the most stylish of hostile takeovers. Ever.Prabal GurungOn an upward trajectory since his Spring show last September, Prabal Gurung has been methodically taking advantage of the opportunities that have come his way since he left Bill Blass to launch his line: there were the high-profile red carpet photo ops courtesy of Demi Moore and Thandie Newton, not to mention that cover of O, The Oprah Winfrey magazine. His debut runway show on Saturday -- easily one of this week's most coveted tickets (think Marc Jacobs and Alexander Wang level) -- proved he's got his head squarely set on his well-trained shoulders, not to mention well-tailored hands.The first few looks captured the essence of Gurung's design aesthetic: minimal to no prints, but a focus on bold colors (to wit, the opening curvilinear coat was white in front but black in back). Color-blocking proved to be more than simply an afterthought here. Gurung cut a soft edge with his garments, focusing on asymmetry and body conscious motivations that equated to dynamic proportions suitable for both the downtown "It" girls he counts among his posse and their uptown mothers. The camel pieces were simply divine. Gurung, however, is best known for his eveningwear -- be it sleek cocktail dresses or Oscar-worthy gowns. On the runway and shown in motion, the fruits of his intense laboring were visible -- if not, at times, a tad too fussy. A black and white iridescent wool tweed coat with wool faille sleeves had front-row starlet Zoe Saldana's eyes all lit up; a sure sign of their appeal both on and off the runway. The finale -- a deep crimson strapless draped gazar gown with sculpted black ruffles -- was proof positive that Gurung knows how to wow a crowd with both his intellectual prowess and street smarts. LacosteShort and sweet. That seemed to be the mantra of designer Christophe Lemaire this season, as the Frenchman sent out a collection that, while showcased fewer looks than in past seasons, didn't sacrifice quality or creative wit. A loose, slouchy mood prevailed for most of the show, color blocked from parchment shades through red and blues. As with all Lacoste shows, there was something there for everyone in the form of stylish and practical sportswear: long, wooly knits, a jumpsuit, a suede mini and cozy coats -- all paired with textured leggings. Lemaire morphed the brand's iconic polo into two inventive looks for fall: one, an oversized polo maxidress, and two, a cute cape that skirted the chest. Sweater dresses were among the standouts, as was the outerwear -- in particular the suede jackets with stand-up collars and a slightly voluminous felted wool overcoat with raglan sleeves.Peter SomNever one to rest on his laurels, Peter Som manages to find inventive ways in which to interject a boost of energy into his collections. For fall, that was evident by the prominent Seventies psychedelic "trip" he sent down his runway. Som has achieved a nice tempo when it comes to mastering the mix of melding his ladylike silhouettes with eccentric twists. A sparkly mélange of fabrics and prints emerged -- this being Som's comeback runway show -- in the form of tie-neck chiffon blouses, neat pencil skirts belted at the waist and gorgeous sheath dresses. While the templates were straightforward, their finish was anything but: acid yellow and green, marshmallow organza flowers, pearlized petal paillettes, leopard prints and electric plaids wildly intensified the separates. Also prominent was a serious venture into fur: minks, Mongolians and broadtails in a multitude of shades, including, but not limited to, bubble gum pink, vibrant blue, polished purple -- not just tie-dyed to perfection, but generously adorned with Swarovski crystals to boot.Gant by Michael BastianThis best thing to ever happen to Swedish clothing giant Gant, Michael Bastian delivered a terrific inaugural collection of men's sportswear, under the label "Gant by Michael Bastian," with the undercurrent of lacrosse in mind. Having never picked up a stick or even attended a game, Bastian was inspired by an article on the sport he read in The New Yorker -- one that provided for him a new insight into the game. Staged inside a gymnasium in SoHo, Bastian designed a collection that offered something for every stylish male -- and the aspiring. Working with a locker-room tableaux vivant, there were the ubiquitous plaid shirts, but beyond that, there were windowpane blazers, preppy topcoats, lace-up rugby shirts and slim trousers (including khakis in the brand's heritage) in a variety of fabrications. Athletic mesh detail on the lapels was indicative of Bastian's eye for detail -- all of which is priced at one-third of his namesake designer line. The buzz at the presentation was that what Ralph Lauren did for Rugby, Bastian is doing for lacrosse (note: Barneys has already bought the entire collection for all its Co-op stores nationwide). FOGO anyone? (That'd be "Face Off, Get Off.")For more Fashion Week news, visit . Follow Jim Shi on Twitter:Dare you wear faux fur with leather and wool? This fall, you probably should. In the latest edition of Joe Fresh tutorials, Adrienne Shoom shows how to layer silks with heavy wools and faux fur with faux leather. Do something a little unexpected this season and try mixing things you wouldn't have thought of pairing. Will you actually try to wear different materials at once? Let us know on or in the comments below. Here are 15 pairs of our favourite fall pants:Here are 15 of our favourite tops for fall: Fun fact: . We can't make this stuff up. , which hosts weekly flash sales with all sorts of designer goodies. The latest sale is titled and is filled with Kim and Kourtney's pricey castoffs -- think Christian Louboutin, Fendi, Burberry, Gucci and a surprising amount of Alexander Wang. With an insatiable appetite for designer gear and a schedule full of red carpet appearances, why would Kim want to empty out her closet (and on eBay, no less)? For charity, of course: "a portion of the proceeds" from Kim's sale will go to Life Change Community Church, the reality family's house of worship (yes, ). Another reason Kim may be jettisoning a portion of her closet, some speculate, is . We have noticed (and ) that since beginning her "relationship" with Kanye, Kim has ditched her colorful outfits, opting instead for black, white and gray numbers. , -- as one half of KimYe, Kim is all monochrome, all the time. So where has all the leopard print gone? -- although to be fair, there's plenty of black, white and gray Kimmy clothes being sold online, too. (we've rounded up most of the pieces below). You may be surprised to find how much you like some of the items, from classy black pumps to slouchy Alexander Wang dresses. Luckily it's all on sale for the next three days, so that Cavalli animal-print jumpsuit can still be yours. Want more? Be sure to check out HuffPost Style on , , and . Who knew failed love could be such a career boost? After rumors of receiving , the wronged wife has managed to strike fashion model gold: she walked the Alexander Wang show during New York Fashion Week today.And since , this may just be the ultimate way to prove that . The Alexander Wang way show may just be the most coveted runway for a model to walk -- , so you can imagine how this can be quite the career boost for Liberty.Now that Wang has welcomed the 33-year-old model with open arms, do you think the rest of the fashion world will follow suit? Or do you think Liberty's fame will die down along with the controversy? Check out the photos of Liberty walking Alexander Wang's runway and tell us what you think.PHOTOS:Yes, that WAS in fact Liberty Ross on the @ runway - and backstage. CE— styledotcom (@styledotcom) Frightful picture - but Liberty Ross back on the catwalk for Alex Wang! — LOVE MAGAZINE (@THELOVEMAGAZINE) See Liberty Ross' style evolution!Want more? Be sure to check out HuffPost Style on , , and .NEW YORK, N.Y. - While Kristen Stewart promoted a new film in Toronto, her one-time romantic rival took to the runway.Liberty Ross, the wife of "Snow White and the Huntsman" director Rupert Sanders, walked the catwalk during the Alexander Wang show on Saturday at New York Fashion Week wearing a white wind-breaker with a pencil skirt.Stewart and Sanders issued public apologies following tabloid reports they had a brief affair while Stewart was dating her "Twilight" co-star Robert Pattinson.Ross, 33, has mostly retired from modeling and most recently appeared in "Snow White and the Huntsman" as Stewart's mother.Stewart appeared in public for the first time since the scandal broke on Thursday for the premiere of "On the Road" at the Toronto International Film Festival. Hundreds of "Twilight" fans came out to show support for the 22-year-old actress.Meanwhile, Alexander Wang's show is one of the hottest tickets at fashion week and he's made a splash before using models who aren't regular runway walkers. Last season it was Gisele Bundchen, Shalom Harlow and Karolina Kurkova. On Saturday, runway graduate Erin Wasson also returned to his catwalk. Courtney Love played at Alexander Wang's after-party at the Mobile gas station on 15th Street. Was it fabulous? Depends who you ask. Here's Courtney's take, sort of aimed at the Replacements' Paul Westerberg: "we had way fun tonight for Alexander(Wang) sorry we mangled 'Unsatisfied'westerberg but they were so fashiionista they... Alexander Wang's full frontal assault on the senses manifested itself in an all out bacchanal after show party at Pier 40 on Saturday night. Each guest was greeted with glow sticks, jello shots, damaged garden gnomes and blow-up sex dolls as they made their way center stage to the event.Celebrating the breakout fashion star's Spring 2012 collection, PlayStation provided a sneak peak of their newest title "Everybody Dance" at Wang's "house party" themed event. On one side of the room, Penn Badgley was spotted with Zoe Kravitz, while rapper Tyler the Creator relaxed on a sofa adjacent to guests singularly focused on PlayStation's latest title. About halfway through the bash, Christina Ricci arrived in a body-skimming vintage dress. The "Pan Am" star and Wang showed off their dance moves inside the PlayStation Living Room -- indeed, the duo played the new "Everybody Dance" game, while they also rocked out to the tune of Rihanna's "Rude Boy."Other partygoers included Jared Leto, Terry Richardson, Amanda Hearst, Bee Schaffer, Joe Zee and Russell Simmons. The sole question remains: how will Wang out-do himself next season? Stay tuned.Follow Melissa Berkelhammer on Twitter:Get ready to (politely) rock the casbah: the is going Sid and Nancy for its 2013 Costume Institute Exhibit. the museum's big spring exhibition, will "highlight the origins of the punk movement and draw direct connections to haute couture and ready-to-wear creations that it has inspired for the past three decades," Women's Wear Daily reports.Instead of focusing on one designer's retrospective like or 2012's " show, then, this year's exhibit will include looks from Azzedine Alaia, Ann Demeulemeester, Dolce & Gabbana, Marc Jacobs, Rei Kawakubo, Alexander McQueen, Alexander Wang and Rodarte. With funding from both Moda Operandi and Conde Nast, the show will pinpoint the origin of punk designs in the early to mid-1970s in both New York and London and trace the influence of punk stylings throughout the decades. (If from 1994 doesn't make it in, we're quitting fashion forever.)But the Met's punk exhibit will have some big Doc Martens to fill. In 2011, attracting over 650,000 visitors and netting 23,000 more memberships for the museum. While last year's , the costume institute has hosted popular exhibits on , and in recent years."Punk: From Chaos to Couture" will kick off with the annual Met Gala on May 6, hosted by Rooney Mara and Riccardo Tisci, and the exhibit will be on public display from May 9 to August 11, 2013. We hear is already waiting in line.Take a look at the stunning guests from 2012's "Schiaparelli and Prada: Impossible Conversations" opening gala!Want more? Be sure to check out HuffPost Style on , , and . is often called fashion's Oscars, but honestly, we think it's bigger than that. Where else do you get every major Oscar star and fashion's most powerful names all together on one red carpet?At the Metropolitan Museum of Art, of course, where Anna Wintour, Miuccia Prada and Carey Mulligan are welcoming the most glamorous stars on Earth at tonight's Costume Institute's annual ball. This year, fashion's finest are celebrating Prada as well as , who together comprise the Costume Institute's new exhibition, So who's showing up to fete Prada, Schiap and all of fashion's finest? See our continually updated slideshow for all the red carpet glam. Vote on your favorite look of the night, follow for live-tweeting throughout the night and check out and .Also on HuffPost: , an embossed-leather duffel with studs all over the bottom, just became "available" for purchase ... but it's already sold out. for the bag, and Wang says the company is going to have to produce more bags than originally planned just to make sure there's stock in-store.If you're one of the 400 -- or a newly minted admirer -- set a notification to find out when it's back in stock at Net-a-Porter, where the bag is stealthily residing under the name (which usually refers to , but Net-a-Porter's is black).All that aside, though -- and with the disclaimer that I do think this is a great bag -- isn't it still a little steep for a sold-out-before-it-hits-the-stores item? Or is this waitlist just a -patronizing micropopulation that's over the recession (if they were ever under it)?If you want your studded black leather duffel now, check out ($475), which is about the same size as the Rocco, and will set you back less than $500. Or shop our guide to , all of which ring in at under $250.Follow Michelle Madhok on Twitter:Michelle Obama exudes an abundance of class. She's a very intelligent, compassionate and beautiful woman both inside and out. It’s such a joy to have a first lady who is admired by many countries throughout the world. She's a strong woman with great dignity and integrity. I'm sure she’s not concerned about what DC's superficial socialites have to say about her fashion choices, or what fussy old biddies expect her to wear so she can look like Bess Truman or Jackie O or Nancy Reagan or Laura Bush. Michelle is her own person and always dresses appropriately for whatever the occasion, casual or dressy. It's appalling that these women are more interested in what's in her closet than all the Christian values in her heart, mind and soul. WOMEN should respect and support one another, yet some are eagerly criticizing Michelle Obama's wardrobe! How shallow! I suspect these women feel it's easier and safer to vent their resentment by insulting Michelle's wardrobe rather than blatantly say it's the color of her skin that torments them. These are women who feel Michelle should be a servant in the White House rather than First Lady. It disgusts me that this malicious behavior exists, especially directed towards a remarkable woman who with all of her incredible kindness and compassion has far more decency and elegance and refinement than her vicious attackers. I bet they call themselves Christians but the disgusting odor of hypocrisy gives them away. You would think they would be ashamed!After wearing ASOS Africa, in Soweto and with Desmond Tutu, Michelle Obama was off to Botswana on Friday with her suitcase full of suitable ensembles.She stepped off the plane in Gaborone in a vibrant Jean Paul Gaultier pantsuit paired with the by Tory Burch. She made a quick outfit change into her Rachel Roy knit jacket, white capris and sneakers before painting murals at the Botswana-Baylor Adolescent Center. Then, it was one more look for dinner -- a beaded collar jacket by ASOS Africa (), a Duro Olowu scarf, black leggings and flats.On Saturday, the Obama gals set out for a safari in the Madikwe Game Reserve. The first lady picked a neutral palette topped off with her fringed Prova scarf. And on Sunday, Michelle bid Botswana adieu, heading home in a cropped trenchcoat over a yellow sweater, black trousers and flats and her square-framed sunglasses.Take a look at Michelle in Botswana and tell us what you think.() What a wonderful day although on the subject of Mrs. Obama's dress..As a fashion professional of some 30 years I did'nt find the dress lovely in the least bit...the use of fabric that cntained glimmer and a diamond like collar was so off for a morning event anywhere!!! together with Green shoes and gloves a wonder now what her EVening look will beBetween shows like , Prabal Gurung and Alexander Wang and the launch of , Saturday was yet another non-stop day for .To see what you missed, take a look at our slideshow below with our favorite tweets of the day, including Teen Vogue's beauty editor Eva Chen's realization that had traded his signature blue jacket for a suit, 's mocking of and more. Want more? Be sure to check out Stylelist on , , and .eGHZmFyID44mYu00M5dZQhYaAu%2FAmgJCGfYy66NCsZ2EUUrkxATVpY3ZqY8OFl1%2FoXLYoQU8PvUL2Z1kZDKyyoA05FaNsFcAC5NV9gVopOsWvOjkA%2Fbw9Fv1DcoUwx8n4kIuB5Ua5hfpX3jCUjpesA7EFvdsOSuTBc8OfyGzw3GYqrfjYvGOR8QAEXbdlMhNOne Monday back in January I spent the morning with Amy Powney, Head Designer at Mother of Pearl. Rather than meeting in a fancy restaurant or hotel in Central London, which is often the case, Powney invited me to the brand's studio based in the middle of East London's bustling creative scene. The team were in the middle of preparing for their A/W 2012 collection but were kind enough to devote their morning to talk me through the brand and transport me into the Mother of Pearl world; and I can safely confirm that that world is not a bad place to be. The team are uncompromisingly enthusiastic and passionate about what they do and it's infectious.Whilst you may be unfamiliar with the brand now, give it a year or so and that will change. The company has actually been around for several years but it is only now that things have really come together. Teams have come and gone and the aesthetic has changed several times so it was only four seasons ago when Powney was appointed as head designer that things began to change. This fact isn't something they shy away from. In fact, Powney was pretty frank when asked about it. "People in the industry take fashion very seriously so if you've seen a brand through several different phases, people move on and lose interest. It has taken time to get people to come back and see it but I finally feel like it's at a good point and people can see that it's a good concept." It's the brand's present carnation that has helped win them a legion of fans and become on of the industry's best kept secrets. And while MOP, as the team call it, was established by Maia Norman who continues to serve as creative director, it is Amy who has managed to articulate her easy sports wear vision. But the aesthetic goes beyond sports wear. What instantly strikes you about the clothes is the ease in which they can slip into your wardrobe alongside what you already have, whilst also managing to be statement pieces in their own right. Take the block coloured maxi skirts or simple shirts and round hemmed blazers from their summer collection for example. Whether, like me, you're a woman in your twenties trying to move away from your Topshop years and now invest in quality pieces or you're a forty year-old mother of three, there's something in there for you.With all of the new challenges that the recession has brought, this makes sense. Women are looking for pieces that are multi-functional and will take them from the school run to an after work event and a full on work day in between. "She's always doing something," Powney said about being inspired by Maia's busy lifestyle. "She really wanted to create a casual brand. When Maia and I go out, we want to feel comfortable. I hate that feeling of clothes hugging and pulling on you so you would never see me in big heels and a tight dress. It's much sexier when you see a woman look really comfortable in her own skin and whatever she's wearing. That easiness comes with simpler silhouettes." And it's true. It's this reason that women have fallen in love with Stella McCartney and Phoebe Philo's work at Celine, for example. Their clothes encapsulates the 'for women, by women' mantra, which strangely is a lot less common today that you would expect.It's no surprise then that Powney names celebrities like Tilda Swinton as a source of inspiration and someone who she'd like to see wearing the brand. "I truly believe that women should wear the clothes and not have the clothes wear them but equally, the clothes should reflect your personality and what you want to say" and that's exactly what Swinton does. "She is one of the few women who can wear something a lot more causal to an event but still look great," she said. "It's great when you have those girls that can where something simple and classic but still look amazing." And that's what Mother of Pearl do so well. It's not about being included in the trend round ups for Powney. Instead, she's unapologetic about maintaining the MOP voice so even if you do see the occasional big trend in one of their collections, you can sure as hell count on them being done in a very Mother of Peal way.And it's going down well. Over the past year the brand has teamed up Show Studio on a series of collaborations, launched a hugely successful partnership with Pierre Hardy, are currently working on a pop-up shop in Harrods and their clothes are going down a treat in the new Asian economies. "I'm really proud of that because [the Asian market] just get it," she said. "They're the sort of people that wear brands like Marni and can carry off pieces that are much cooler. When they go out they don't necessarily wear some kind of bod-con dress. They're a lot cooler and that really fits our product and it's fortunate that they're having a boom over there."That acute sense of awareness about what the market is doing and what customers want, is Powney all over. Unlike a lot of young designers she has a good head for business, something she credits Kingston university for, as well a stint working for Giles during his early days. In Amy's world, creativity and business go hand in hand. "One day I might be designing and the next day I'm working on accounts and for me it works. It enables me to really understand what the brand is, where it's going and who the customer is," and that something that is instantly apparent the moment you talk to her. Mother of Pearl was her first job after leaving university but rather than starting off in her current position, she actually began as a design assistant before moving into the business side and later heading the design team. "It was good because I really got to see what worked and what didn't work, which has helped get the brand to where it is now."This head for business and what women want transcends through everything they do, especially their work with the art world. Each season the brand teams up with an acclaimed artist whose work will serve as the starting point of a given collection. What's most exciting about these partnerships is the accessibility. To buy an artwork of their any of their former collaborators like Keith Tyson or Jim Lambie will set you back a fair bit but through these collaborations, you can access these artists. Don't get me wrong, the pieces are more expensive than the middle range high street stores but nothing they sell would warrant losing sleep over, which is proving to be a good business move. The recession is putting pressure on brands to rethink their price points. While the big fashion houses are still there, it's contemporary brands like MOP that are getting the most traction today, especially as spending continues to shift to the middle market. "Years ago we used to have couture on one end of the spectrum and then you had the high street. There was no middle ground - it just didn't exist. Now we have diffusion lines and designers like Alexander Wang and we also have shops like Cos, Whistles and Jaeger who are just completely bridging the gap," Powney said when asked whether contemporary brands will have longevity post-recession. "The reality today is that their quality is as good as the diffusion lines and in some cases as good as the mainlines so now it's becoming really competitive because you customers can get can such great products on the high street." But this is a challenge that the team don't shy away from. "I'm a logical person so I actually like the challenge. Sometimes when you have countless money the process can go on an on and that sometimes frustrates me," she admitted. "I like to have a goal so I can then decide the pockets of the collection where we don't think about the money and it's all about the quality. Then it's also nice having a point where you have to create the more accessible pieces too. We use the statement pieces to show what we can do because they are the visual representation of the brand and the other bits are great but in a different way."Business aside, it's the candid moments during my stay that sums the team up best. "We have so many issues that we face from deliveries and dealing with people in different countries and different languages but when things arrive, we all get excited," she said smiling. "At the end of the day we're all a bunch of girls and we love the clothes," her assistant added. And it shows. Follow Naomi Mdudu on Twitter:eGHZmFyID44mYu00M5dZQhYaAu%2FAmgJCGfYy66NCsZ2EUUrkxATVpY3ZqY8OFl1%2FoXLYoQU8PvUL2Z1kZDKyyoA05FaNsFcAC5NV9gVopOsWvOjkA%2Fbw9Fv1DcoUwx8n4kIuB5Ua5hfpX3jCUjpesA7EFvdsOSuTBc8OfyGzw3GYqrfjYvGOR8QAEXbdlMhNRefinery 29 has rounded up New Year's resolutions from some of fashion's finest.Erin Wasson, Model/Designer: "Next year, I'm definitely devoting myself to saving and adopting more animals. I will be on a crusade to do as much as I can. Yes, I can only imagine how crowded my house will be by 2010!"Alexander Wang, Designer: "Hmmm I haven't really made any new year's resolutions--I find that its better to surprise myself than to have expectations I can't keep. But I guess if I had to make one it would be to eat more organic...no junk food. Except for maybe pineapple buns!"While 's designers are clearly capable of sending gorgeous () looks down the runway, many of them aren't as successful when it comes to their personal style. is famous for his basic uniform: a black T-shirt, blazer and dark denim (though he stepped it up at his Spring 2013 show, switching out blue jeans for a pair of black bottoms). But he's not the only designer to opt for head-to-toe black for the final walk: , Laura Mulleavy of and also wore dark, monochromatic looks. Others, however, took advantage of the opportunity to sport standout pieces from their collection (see Anna Sui, Giovanna Randall and Charlotte Ronson, for example). And while many male designers (like Joseph Altuzarra and Olivier Theyskens) wore casual jeans and tees, LBDs reigned supreme for female designers, including , the girls and .Take a look at the photos below to see how designers closed their shows this past week. Who do you think has the best runway style?Want more? Be sure to check out Stylelist on , , and .While we love seeing all the exciting, innovative ensembles on the runway and , sometimes most memorable moments are its most outrageous.A PR girl was slapped by Jennifer Eymere, a Jalouse editor, at (and has since sued for $1 million), (post ) and there was that time that .Of course, the clothes on the runway were just as surprising: a totally sheer gown? Olympics as inspiration? ? We're just getting started.As came to a close on Thursday, we decided to gather up all the truly wild looks and moments. We're also looking ahead to London, Milan and Paris for continued outrageousness, so stay tuned. Here are our nominees:Want more? Be sure to check out Stylelist on , , and .We've teamed up with Greta Larkins, the genius behind the brilliant Tumblr in a weekly series of animated fashion shots.This week, FashGif takes on this beaded jacket from 's spring 2013 show from . Can we expect to see wearing this on the campaign trail? We doubt it, but it sure would make things even more exciting.Want more? Be sure to check out Stylelist on , and .For previous Fashion Gifs, take a peek in our gallery below: Black and white comes in many wonderful forms. Franz Kline paintings. Zebra print. Oreos. I've always loved black and white--and every season the color combination finds its way into my collection. It's seasonless, it's crisp and anyone can wear it.eGHZmFyID44mYu00M5dZQhYaAu%2FAmgJCGfYy66NCsZ2EUUrkxATVpY3ZqY8OFl1%2FoXLYoQU8PvUL2Z1kZDKyyoA05FaNsFcAC5NV9gVopOsWvOjkA%2Fbw9Fv1DcoUwx8n4kIuB5Ua5hfpX3jCUjpesA7EFvdsOSuTBc8OfyGzw3GYqrfjYvGOR8QAEXbdlMhNeGHZmFyID44mYu00M5dZQhYaAu%2FAmgJCGfYy66NCsZ2EUUrkxATVpY3ZqY8OFl1%2FoXLYoQU8PvUL2Z1kZDKyyoA05FaNsFcAC5NV9gVopOsWvOjkA%2Fbw9Fv1DcoUwx8n4kIuB5Ua5hfpX3jCUjpesA7EFvdsOSuTBc8OfyGzw3GYqrfjYvGOR8QAEXbdlMhNIf you love Solange Knowles' bold and inspiring style as much as we do, then you'll be thrilled to know that British Vogue.com has picked the singer as February'ssubject. The "Today I'm Wearing" series dedicates an entire month to a particularly fabulous tastemaker and builds a virtual diary of all their daily looks. Genius! We fell in love with the lookbooks from model and actressand shoe designer --so we're super excited about Solange's edition. Make sure to visit everyday for your daily dose of Solange! Here's a look at Solange's first "Today I'm Wearing" outfit--and a week's worth of past fashion moments from the star that we wouldn't mind seeing again. eGHZmFyID44mYu00M5dZQhYaAu%2FAmgJCGfYy66NCsZ2EUUrkxATVpdedrOwQXI3XX%2B5yNRDO7ET5XeB1iGgJt5ECdU5oFZYECIvEVkntrWRHbW3IytrNEqR%2Be7l59kfXhWQWiN%2FITTFFQlMQKyUnGNNJFVuJK9md8bFFGNHeB%2FhnY5%2B3%2B4IJ6%2BJocFQHUE6%2FIn the most perfect collaboration of all time, Starbucks has teamed up with fashion.Well, with the CFDA, if we're being particular. , CFDA designers Alexander Wang, Billy Reid and Sophie Theallet have each designed a special tee shirt for the coffee company that is inspired by the Starbucks brand. , the shirts each take a unique spin on the ubiquitous caffeine chain. Alexander Wang took literal inspiration and designed a white tee with a messy coffee splash, while Sophie Theallet channeled Starbucks' let's-change-the-world, touchy-feely side with images of the continents and Billy Reid went the abstract expressionist route and put a single, subtle splatter on one shoulder of his coffee-brown tee.The limited edition tees also channel Starbucks in that they are grossly overpriced at $85. Get your own at Nordstrom.com, select Nordstrom stores or starting today.Or just go to Starbucks, pick up a venti skim latte and go walk around with it while wearing dark sunglasses and clutching your Blackberry. That feels more authentically "fashion" to us. See pics of the tees below! Will you be buying? eGHZmFyID44mYu00M5dZQhYaAu%2FAmgJCGfYy66NCsZ2EUUrkxATVpY3ZqY8OFl1%2FoXLYoQU8PvUL2Z1kZDKyyoA05FaNsFcAC5NV9gVopOsWvOjkA%2Fbw9Fv1DcoUwx8n4kIuB5Ua5hfpX3jCUjpesA7EFvdsOSuTBc8OfyGzw3GYqrfjYvGOR8QAEXbdlMhNIt's a typical Canadian trait not to boast about ourselves. But this Canada Day, we're parting with our self-effacing tradition and declaring our Canadian style crushes. These days, we have many -- the folks on our list are not only easy on the eyes, they're also stylish by their own accord, and have captured attention across the nation and around the world for making their mark, whether it's in design, fashion, entertainment, or media. From a small town girl working as a supermodel or a design duo helping viewers transform the ordinary into the extraordinary, we're proud of their work and how they represent our nation. And did we mention how really, really, really good-looking they are? (Sorry, couldn't resist the Zoolander reference)Check out our shortlist of stylish Canadian stunners. Who's on your list? With files from Lisa YeungCoco RochaCoco Rocha is a Toronto born, B.C. raised stunner. When she's not trying out , she's strutting various runways -- season after season. The prolific model is a favourite cover girl for the high-fashion mags, and is also known for her outspokenness and a small controversy over looking 'too naked' on the cover ofJessica StamWould you believe that Jessica Stam though she'd grow up to be a dentist? Spotted at a Tim Horton's in Ontario, Stam has sky-rocketed to become one of the most popular models around. Amidst her fashion success, about social media and the overuse of cellphones, then brought in the new year as the This Canadian girl shows her support for our home and native land. Kimberley Newport-Mimran & Joe MimranKimberley Newport-Mimran is the brain behind Pink Tartan. Her husband Joe Mimran's line Joe Fresh is a household name. So here we have an example of a Canadian fashion power couple. With two of the most sought after lines, this couple has taken the Canadian fashion industry by storm and has pushed their collections across the border. Joe Fresh recently launched their flagship store in New York, and Pink Tartan is being sold at Saks Fifth Avenue. They are most certainly a couple to admire and applaud. Shalom HarlowWhile Shalom Harlow may not be as prominent in the past years, this former Canadian supermodel had a daring , where she flashed her boobs in the name of fashion. She was also brought back to walk in an . Will we see more of this 38 year-old model? We hope so. Samantha BeeWe love a funny woman, but we love a funny Canadian woman even more. Samantha Bee joined The Daily Show in 2003 and has been busting our guts ever since. Bee won the Canadian Comedy Award in 2005 for "Pretty Funny Female." She recently appeared on the TV show She's one of those funny, gorgeous women that other women envy and want to be best friends with. Us included. Jessica Paré Zou bisou be--yahoo for this Canadian beauty. Jessica Paré's sultry secretary Megan Calvet won Don Draper's heart, and her rendition of Zoo Bisou Bisou became a Mad Men hit overnight. But the Canadian-born actress has film credits stretching more than a decade that include the dramatic Lost & Delirious and the less-dramatic Hot Tub Time Machine. Recently named one of People's most beautiful women of 2012, Don Draper's wife will always be, to us, a Montrealer to be proud of.Joe ZeeIf you watched The Hills spin-off The City, you remember Joe Zee as the level-headed, reasonable creative director of American Elle. But despite the yankee pronunciation of his last name, Zee is no American, he's from Toronto. Not only is his style impeccable, he also has a reputation for being nice, and that's pretty gosh darn Canadian, if we do say so ourselves. Brad GoreskiBrad Goreski was Rachel Zoe's super-pal on her reality TV show, but now he's the star of his own show, It's A Brad, Brad World. Always dressed impeccably, the chiseled-featured Goreski has become a character in the fashion world and has won some big-name clients. He's been photographed and walked many a red carpet alongside a-list celebs. He may live in LA but his roots are pure Port Perry, Ontario.Linda EvangelistaCan you guess how many covers Linda Evangelista has been on? No? Well, it's a measly 600. After winning the Miss Niagra beauty pageant in 1988, Evangelista was discovered and soon became a muse to designers the world over and photographers like Steven Miesel. Known for her George Michael video appearance and her notorious line, 'I don't get out of bed for less than $10,000,' the supermodel has maintained a long and productive career, and appears not to age at all. Although she recently through an arduous and very public child-support battle this year, she looked damn good doing it.Tommy Smythe & Sarah Richardson Two is better than one, as this dynamic and attractive design duo proves! Tommy Smythe and Sarah Richardson work side-by-side on the HGTV show 'Sarah 101' and always do it in style. The duo has worked together for 10 years and can turn any ordinary room into an extraordinary one. They've long proven to us that , and often also do so when it comes to their ensembles on the show. DrakeThis former Degrassi star was born in Toronto and has evolved into nothing short of a smooth, stylish phenom. And if his lyrics aren't enough to prove this (our current fave is 'I'll Take Care of You'), just take a gander at this he designed himself, and you'll remember that he's 25 sittin on 25 mil. Ryan GoslingThis London, On-born, Cornwall-raised looker has come a long way since his Hawaiian-print shirts and middle part on (though we must admit we even loved him back then), both in terms of talent and style. With his clean-cut, impeccably-tailored suits and it-looks-like-it's-photoshopped body, we can understand why Ryan Gosling fans took to the streets in protest outside the New York offices of People magazine after the publication named Bradley Cooper sexiest man alive of 2011. Suzanne BoydAs former editor-in-chief of , this gorgeous Halifax-born fashionista is the first person of colour to head a mainstream Canadian publication. She has served on the Editorial Council of the Women's Group of Rogers Media and was a founding member of the Fashion Design Council of Canada - impressive much? As current editor-in-chief of , she's creating a distinct lifestyle voice for the 40+ set, and is doing it ever-so-stylishly. Justin BieberThough he's usually known for his purple hoodies and squeaky clean sneakers, over the years this Stratford, On native has made some edgier fashion choices; he surprised us all by . And he and gal pal Selena were ranked as one of the , according to Teen Vogue. Aliya Jasmine SovaniFor those viewers glued to the edge of their seats during 1 Girl 5 Gays or MTV News, it's no secret that Aliya Jasmine "AJ" Sovani is always on top of the latest trends. This Ottawa-born beauty is of Persian and African-Indian decent, and in 2010 was selected as one of HELLO Magazine's 50 Most Beautiful Canadians and was on the National Post's Worthy-30 to watch list. Jay ManuelWhile we know him best as the "nicer Jay" who directs photo shoots on America's Next Top Model, Jay Manuel is also a makeup artist, fashion photographer, designer and model. Before entering the world of fashion, he was a pre-med student, but has since made a splash in the style industry, with his own clothing line and . And who could forget his trademark silver coif and handsome good looks and style?Steven Sabados & Chris HyndmanThis dashing design duo always look polished to perfection. But rest assured, there are brains behind this blemish-free doublet. After leaving Designer Guys in 2004, Sabados and Hyndman have launched a second successful interior design program, Design Rivals and on their mid-afternoon CBC talk show , they instruct on makeovers, cooking demos, and interior design. Dan LevyIf you watched The Hills, you remember Dan as the sarcastic and witty co-host of The Hills Aftershow. He may have inherited his nerd-chic glasses from his actor father Eugene Levy, but as we watched him poke fun at Laguna Beach graduates over the years, we saw his own impressive style emerge and grow. Catch him these days on The X Factor USA. Measha BrueggergosmanCanadian soprana beauty Measha Brueggergosman has performed throughout Canada and is the recipient of three Grammy awards. Whenever she sings, she does it in true diva style, with amazing, dramatic gowns and exquisite jewelry. Heather MarksThis young, Calgary-born model has made it big in the fashion industry. Known for her doll- like beauty and porcelain face, she has worked for Italian Vogue, Givenchy, Calvin Klein, Emporio Armani and Marc by Marc Jacobs, to name a few. After participating in campaigns for Anna Sui, Revlon, MAC and Nars, it's clear she's made her mark (pun fully intended). Also on HuffPost:, A classic T-shirt can be worn forever. It’s a staple piece that every girl needs in her wardrobe. It’s finding that one t-shirt that will look good with practically everything that’s the challenge. There are many basic tees on the market, but in my opinion, the is the only one you need to have.Related: I love them because they are the perfect amount of baggy without looking sloppy and the cotton is light but not so sheer that it’s too see-through. The perfect backdrop for any outfit, T by Alexander Wang’s classic tee can be worn with cut-off denim shorts or you can dress it up by tucking it into a pleated skirt and pairing with heels.Related: This soft and sophisticated tee is designed in a signature Alexander Wang fashion, with mini pockets, stretched-out necklines and deep armholes. Available in black, white and other neutral shades, you will soon want one in every colour and will never look back at your old tees again.More stories from TheKit.ca:Related on The Huffington Post Canada: Celebrities who wear white shirts the right way:Today the internet is crammed with blogs and websites catering to men's style, swagger and taste. For me, there are three gentlemen in particular that have not only mastered their style, but have also successfully inspired men everywhere to add a bit of flair to their daily life.eGHZmFyID44mYu00M5dZQhYaAu%2FAmgJCGfYy66NCsZ2EUUrkxATVpdedrOwQXI3XX%2B5yNRDO7ET5XeB1iGgJt5ECdU5oFZYECIvEVkntrWRHbW3IytrNEqR%2Be7l59kfXhWQWiN%2FITTFFQlMQKyUnGNNJFVuJK9md8bFFGNHeB%2FhnY5%2B3%2B4IJ6%2BJocFQHUE6%2FeGHZmFyID44mYu00M5dZQhYaAu%2FAmgJCGfYy66NCsZ2EUUrkxATVpY3ZqY8OFl1%2FoXLYoQU8PvUL2Z1kZDKyyoA05FaNsFcAC5NV9gVopOsWvOjkA%2Fbw9Fv1DcoUwx8n4kIuB5Ua5hfpX3jCUjpesA7EFvdsOSuTBc8OfyGzw3GYqrfjYvGOR8QAEXbdlMhNDavid Phu wants to keep it casual. Biking, that is. The founder of the Vancouver Cycle Chic Society is asking the city's cyclists to toss their spandex shorts with cushioning and clip-ins aside and embrace casual cycling. What casual cycling is not: dressing like you're in the Tour De France. What casual biking is: dressing with style or as you normally would but still biking to where you need to go.His aim to remove the necessity of sporting gear would make biking much more accessible to the masses. Some North American fashion enthusiasts since before street style was even a thing.But although , Canada's embrace of casual cycle style still lags . So next time you're headed out in heels or a dress, don't second guess your bicycle. Embrace the freedom of riding in style and create a comfortable culture around being a cyclist. It's not a club for athletes only -- it's just a way to get around. Get inspired on what to wear when riding this summer with these items:Related on HuffPost:Vogue.fr brings you the best of French style live from Paris, and the latest in beauty, culture, Paris parties, fine jewelry, and photography, plus live runway reporting from the shows. We're one of the most influential style brands on the web and the biggest French media brand on , with a significant presence across all the main social media platforms including , , and . In April 2012, we decided to take the voice of Vogue Paris global, with an of the site for our international readers.Vogue Paris magazine has been at the forefront of fashion for more than 90 years, working with hand-picked photographers, artists and designers to translate the mood of the moment in style, art, and culture to inspire and stimulate a community of fashion-forward readers.NEW YORK — Bikini season may be over, but this is no time to tone down the workout. Many of the styles on the runway at New York Fashion Week flash a bit of skin here or there: bare midriffs, cutout backs, keyhole necklines.The silhouettes in spring previews that entered a fourth day Sunday aren't necessarily skin tight, but it's not a season of full-on floaty frocks, either."We've gone so far away from overt sexiness, but the reality is, sex sells. At some point the shopper wants to be sexy," said Hal Rubenstein, fashion director of InStyle magazine. "Illusion fabric on a shoulder or a little skin showing on a midriff gives you a hint without giving it all away."Victoria Beckham and DKNY continued the trend with bra-style tops, while many of Alexander Wang's looks were seemingly held together by fishing wire. Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week continues through Thursday before the fashion crowd heads to London, Milan and Paris.ZAC POSENThe audience had started griping about Zac Posen's delayed start, but as soon as Naomi Campbell took that first step on the runway, there was a collective "aha."And then there was an "ooh."The spring collection was being modeled on the terrace of Lincoln Center's Avery Fisher Hall by many of the models who helped put Posen on the map a decade ago. Campbell, Erin O'Connor, Karolina Kurkova and Alek Wek were among the catwalkers who'd strut for the newbie because they were such fans of his masterfully made clothes.Fast-forward to the new season, and Posen put them in romantic, glamorous gowns with the intricate, detailed, show-stopping sort of details that first won them over. Campbell wore a corseted daytime dress with a swingy dance hemline, setting the tone. The best of the gowns had either tons of tiny tulle pintucks, mermaid silhouettes or candy-ribbon peplums.DIANE VON FURSTENBERGDiane von Furstenberg called her spring collection "Palazzo." "La Dolce Vita" also would have worked.The muse has "the polish of a princess and the heart of a gypsy," von Furstenberg said, and she travels from Rome to Marrakesh and then off to Jaipur, India.She takes with her on this journey tunics and skinny-leg pants – practically silk leggings – to wear during the day, and a blood-orange scarf gown attached to a silver choker and cuff bracelets for the night. She brings her kiwi-green gown with a cutout neckline just in case she'll need it for a last-minute, black-tie invitation.The trip is definitely more play than work, a bit of a departure for von Furstenberg whose label often is the workhorse of a career woman. But these clothes fuel the fantasy she might be having at her desk.Google co-founder Sergey Brin was on hand and Von Furstenberg and some of the models wore Google Glasses that were collecting video for a project to be released on Google-Plus and YouTube on Thursday.VICTORIA BECKHAMVictoria Beckham's show not only looks like her signature pulled-together, well-edited style, but it feels like her, too.She's the thoughtful hostess with waiters offering morning juice to the crowd at the New York Public Library, but she keeps the guest list very tight. She's one of the biggest draws of the week, but there's no frenzy of paparazzi photographers. (Husband David Beckham, however, did take some photos from his seat.)Beckham said she checks – or doublechecks – every look to make sure "it looks good from every angle."The clothes for spring had a delicacy that she said was new for her this season, although the clothes remained substantial and structured. It was the touch of illusion lace, the lingerie bra top or hemline of pleated chiffon that took the edge off banded short skirts, zip-back sheaths and shirtdresses."I want to design what I want to wear," she said.DKNYWhat can stop traffic in always-bustling New York? Donna Karan in a taxicab-yellow raincoat.Karan took her bow in the eye-catcher at Sunday's DKNY New York Fashion Week preview to the delight of the fashion insiders and to the passers-by on the street who could peek in the open doors to the Chelsea studio space.She turned out a collection of mostly sporty looks featuring white perforated leather (think golf-glove material), camouflage prints, bathing suits-turned-bodysuits, bra tops and long neoprene dresses with mesh backs and sexy inserts. One of those dresses was in the same super-bright yellow that Karan wore.DKNY is supposed to dress its customers every day and for every occasion, Karan said in a post-show interview: "When I can wear the same thing as the girls on the runway, I've done my job."CHADO RALPH RUCCIColor and contemporary details took the show for the luxury line Chado by Ralph Rucci.Rucci and his team mixed old world glamour with new world touches like a swirl pattern of braiding on the sheer top of a chiffon-skirted dress. The same braiding in a riot of neon colors was used on one long sleeve of a basic black pantsuit.Crystals sparkled on a coral blouse worn with a white wrap skirt that carried the pink along the hem, separated by a single black line. The minimalist line was also used in a wearable white tunic with bright pink at the waist and hem, paired with white cigarette pants.A subtle quilting technique called trapunto lent elegance to silk faille suits and dresses made of the wetsuit material neoprene in white and bright pink.THAKOONYou've got to have a sense of humor – and some guts – to send a birdcage-print dress down the runway as the opening look for a New York Fashion Week preview.Thakoon Panichgul proved he has both.The clothes mostly were more serious than silly (Panichgul dresses the first lady sometimes, after all), but, come on, a little gold chain dangling between the beaks of two embroidered birds is certainly a conversation starter."You have to have joy in fashion," Panichgul said in a pre-show interview. "I wanted to show classic cool with whimsy."He got that with a few pieces covered in clear plastic paillettes that mirrored the flashes from photographers' cameras. Panichgul featured many layers of sometimes weighty fabrics, which gave the clothes their shape and structure while still allowing for a looser silhouette.TRACY REESETracy Reese rode her Michelle Obama bump from the Democratic National Convention to the runway, putting on a show of juxtapositions in color, textiles and embellishments."It's still such a big high," Reese smiled backstage after the show. "It reminded us how grateful we have to be to live in this country."In a range of foliage greens, cool blues, warm ochre, tangerine and crimson, Reese put wide bands of flat industrial shingle sequins on airy loose trousers in yellows and reds.She mixed a dainty, beaded floral pattern on top of one sleeveless shift dress with zigzags outlined in black sequins against bold blue on the bottom. Reese worked in phosphorescents to embroider bright pink flowers on the top of a tunic, using the same technique in yellow in a tribal pattern at the bottom.DEREK LAMBurgundy foil paillettes for cocktails or skinny madras plaid trousers with matching jacket in a military green for the office? You can take your pick from Derek Lam's spring collection.Lam's edgy but wearable runway at a downtown venue included black lambskin halter tops and a fitted black leather dress with a pleated hem. Solid-color leather pieces, including a foldover bodice vest and matching skirt in bright blue, stood in contrast to lasercut foil accents on dresses and skirts and macrame and lace work in tweeds and basketweave patterns.Lam went metallic gold for a skirt with macrame that stopped at the knee. Most hems landed just above or below the knee.ALEXANDER WANGThe audience at Alexander Wang is trained to know the best is coming last.The mostly inventive black-and-white, pieced-leather looks that filled the first part of Saturday's show would have held Wang's place as one of the princes of cool. There were sporty parkas, tops inspired by hockey jerseys and even some more refined halter dresses.Wang could have called it a collection and be done with it.However, the final parade of nine models – all wearing a cream color – had their embroidered tank tops, pencil skirts, crewneck dresses and Bermuda shorts turn into glow-in-the-dark lightsticks when they assumed a final pose on the runway and the lights went out.Wang also created a stir by having model Liberty Ross – the wife of the director Kristen Stewart had an affair with – walk the runway, along with the likes of Erin Wasson. Jennifer Aniston's fiance actor Justin Theroux sat in the front row along with rapper A$AP Rocky.MONIQUE LHUILLIERThe red carpet during the upcoming Hollywood awards season could be a sea of ocean-inspired gowns if Monique Lhuillier has anything to do with it.Lhuillier, a favorite source for celebrity gowns, presented a bright aqua lace gown draped with a tulle overlay that gave the illusion of rippling waves – and so did a one-shoulder tiered gown in crepe. A sea-glass green gown was embroidered with sparkly beads and had a low, sheer illusion back, and a textured jacquard strapless gown with a trumpet hemline was an underwater kaleidoscope of colors, including blues, greens and purple."The Emmys are coming up and some of the looks have been selected so they're on hold," said Lhuillier. Bet the gold, coral-embellished sculpted gown that served as the finale is one them.JOSEPH ALTUZARRAOn a rainy Saturday night in Manhattan, fashionistas lined up patiently under umbrellas, undeterred, to catch one of the most buzz-worthy spring previews of Fashion Week: that of rising star Joseph Altuzarra.Actress Kate Bosworth, a big Altuzarra fan, kissed acquaintances and greeted Mamie Gummer, the actress daughter of Meryl Streep. The NBA's Tyson Chandler posed for photos not far from actress Jessica Chastain.The looks that greeted them on the runway were a combination of the very casual – navy-and-white striped cotton jackets and overcoats, for example, evoking kids' overalls – and the glamorous, in the form of gold fringes on everything from skirts to tanks, and crystal-encrusted garments like dramatic scarves draped high around the neck. Workday looks of simple cotton graduated to looks that suddenly shimmered and glistened under the lights, occasionally perhaps a bit blindingly."He's going sky-high," said Nina Garcia, the "Project Runway" judge. "A real original."HERVE LEGERDesigner Max Azria's bandage dresses for Herve Leger are seriously flattering – you can see that best not on the models, who frankly would look good in anything, but on the fashionistas in the audience at his shows.But each show needs to have a new theme, and for Azria's Spring 2013 preview on Saturday, it was something unusual: Quilt-making. From Alabama.One wouldn't ordinarily think of quilt-making from the American South as having much to do with the tight, figure-enhancing dresses that Azria does so well, but the patchwork designs made many of the dresses on display very pretty and colorful, if on a few occasions a bit busy.Particularly appealing was a blue sapphire high-neck bandage dress with "passementerie" embroidery and applique. Another feature of Azria's on full display here were his leather harnesses, in black or tan, around the neck or in the form of a corset.___AP writers Leanne Italie and Jocelyn Noveck contributed to this report.___NEW YORK, N.Y. - Bikini season may be over, but this is no time to tone down the workout. Many of the styles on the runway at New York Fashion Week flash a bit of skin here or there: bare midriffs, cutout backs, keyhole necklines.The silhouettes in spring previews that entered a fourth day Sunday aren't necessarily skin tight, but it's not a season of full-on floaty frocks, either."We've gone so far away from overt sexiness, but the reality is, sex sells. At some point the shopper wants to be sexy," said Hal Rubenstein, fashion director of InStyle magazine. "Illusion fabric on a shoulder or a little skin showing on a midriff gives you a hint without giving it all away."Many of Alexander Wang's looks were seemingly held together by fishing wire. Rag & Bone flashed some skin with strategic cutouts and at Peter Som, midriff-baring cutouts were carved into ladylike sheath dresses. Designers including Jason Wu, Rebecca Taylor and Richard Chai showed bra-style tops.ALEXANDER WANGThe audience at Alexander Wang is trained to know the best is coming last.The mostly inventive black-and-white, pieced-leather looks, many seemingly held together by fishing wire, that filled the first part of Saturday's show would have held Wang's place as one of the princes of cool. There were sporty parkas, tops inspired by hockey jerseys and even some more refined halter dresses.Wang could have called it a collection and be done with it.However, the final parade of nine models — all wearing a cream colour — had their embroidered tank tops, pencil skirts, crewneck dresses and Bermuda shorts turn into glow-in-the-dark lightsticks when they assumed a final pose on the runway and the lights went out.Wang also created a stir by having model Liberty Ross — the wife of the director Kristen Stewart had an affair with — walk the runway, along with the likes of Erin Wasson. Jennifer Aniston's fiance actor Justin Theroux sat in the front row along with rapper A$AP Rocky."In such a short time, Alex has redefined urban utility," said Laura Brown, Harper's Bazaar features and special projects director, who picked a cut-out silver dress as her favourite. "There's always a sexiness to his clothes, but this season he brought a glamour, too."JOSEPH ALTUZARRAIt was a rainy Saturday night in Manhattan, and getting a taxi was murder. But fashionistas lined up patiently under umbrellas, undeterred, to catch one of the most buzz-worthy spring previews of Fashion Week: that of rising star Joseph Altuzarra.Inside the Industria Superstudio in the chic meatpacking district, the excitement was palpable. Actress Kate Bosworth, a big Altuzarra fan, kissed acquaintances and greeted Mamie Gummer, the actress daughter of Meryl Streep. The NBA's Tyson Chandler posed for photos not for from actress Jessica Chastain.The looks that greeted them on the runway were a combination of the very casual — navy-and-white striped cotton jackets and overcoats, for example, evoking kids' overalls — and the glamorous, in the form of gold fringes on everything from skirts to tanks, and crystal-encrusted garments like dramatic scarves draped high around the neck. Workday looks of simple cotton graduated to looks that suddenly shimmered and glistened under the lights, occasionally perhaps a bit blindingly."He's going sky-high," said Nina Garcia, the "Project Runway" judge. "A real original."MONIQUE LHUILLIERThe red carpet during the upcoming Hollywood awards season could be a sea of ocean-inspired gowns if Monique Lhuillier has anything to do with it.Lhuillier, a favourite source for celebrity gowns, presented a bright aqua lace gown draped with a tulle overlay that gave the illusion of rippling waves — and so did a one-shoulder tiered gown in crepe. A sea-glass green gown was embroidered with sparkly beads and had a low, sheer illusion back, and a textured jacquard strapless gown with a trumpet hemline was an underwater kaleidoscope of colours, including blues, greens and purple."The inspiration this season came from a wonderful trip I had in Turkey and I was on a boat and I was looking at the beautiful landscape and water and I was like, that's it. This is the feeling I want for spring," Lhuillier said backstage."The Emmys are coming up and some of the looks have been selected so they're on hold," said Lhuillier. Bet the gold, coral-embellished sculpted gown that served as the finale is one them.___AP National Writer Jocelyn Noveck contributed to this report.___Follow AP Fashion on Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/AP_FashionNEW YORK — While Kristen Stewart promoted a new film in Toronto, her one-time romantic rival took to the runway.Liberty Ross, the wife of "Snow White and the Huntsman" director Rupert Sanders, walked the catwalk during the Alexander Wang show on Saturday at New York Fashion Week wearing a white wind-breaker with a pencil skirt.Stewart and Sanders issued public apologies following tabloid reports they had a brief affair while Stewart was dating her "Twilight" co-star Robert Pattinson.Ross, 33, has mostly retired from modeling and most recently appeared in "Snow White and the Huntsman" as Stewart's mother.Stewart appeared in public for the first time since the scandal broke on Thursday for the premiere of "On the Road" at the Toronto International Film Festival. Hundreds of "Twilight" fans came out to show support for the 22-year-old actress.Meanwhile, Alexander Wang's show is one of the hottest tickets at fashion week and he's made a splash before using models who aren't regular runway walkers. Last season it was Gisele Bundchen, Shalom Harlow and Karolina Kurkova. On Saturday, runway graduate Erin Wasson also returned to his catwalk.NEW YORK, N.Y. - A group of employees has sued designer Alexander Wang for allegedly forcing them to work 16-hour days without overtime.The 30 workers charged that Wang violated numerous New York State labour laws at his Chinatown operation.According to the New York Post (http://nyp.st/yuSEE1 ), the $50 million lawsuit claims the workers had to spend long hours in a cramped, windowless room.The suit was filed in Queens Supreme Court.Representatives for Wang declined to comment. They said they had not yet been served with the papers.Wang opened a flagship store in Chinatown last year. She's 5 feet tall. There is no such thing as a five foot tall pro model. You don't need to own a modeling agency to know that. Although an ounce of brains might help. And she has enough talent to do a lot more than stand there looking annoyed. ( And I work in the PR business, so I do know.)Zoe Kravitz will star in Alexander Wang's T fall ad campaign, . The 21-year-old daughter of Lenny Kravitz and Lisa Bonet has posed alongside model Max Motta in ads that will hit NYC streets come Thursday, promoting Wang's ready-to-wear duds.Wang will also release a video starring model Abbey Lee, "not walking down Wall Street past buildings, but there's wind and newspapers flying all over the place. It's very moody and seductive--like looking at a perfume ad where you feel for the girl a lot more," he explained. The legendary accessory, named after the 1960s actress Jane Birkin, was designed for her by Hermès in the early 1980s and is one of the most expensive handbags made today. Four fetched more than £39,000 each. The top three bags – including A 1998 Rouge Moyen alligator Birkin at £49,250 – went to wealthy private buyers from Asia and Europe, each for more than the price of a three-bedroom house in Lancashire.But the expensive-handbag phenomenon isn't just the world's elite spending more than the average UK salary on one handbag. In London, and across the country, women, from secretaries to shop assistants, are forking out hundreds of pounds for a piece of leather luxury to carry on their arms.This flies in the face of the "age of austerity" in which consumers were expected to make huge cutbacks, withhold their spending and heed warnings of government cuts and job losses. Handbags are one of the most popular presents flying out of the stores this Christmas. From Céline to Hermès, sales are soaring. Mulberry's latest results, for the six months to the end of September, revealed a 207 per cent rise in pre-tax profit, to £4.7m.So will the desire for luxury handbags fade? And how is the rest of the luxury sector faring?Fashion plays its part. The large designer logo and giant handbag fad may be waning. In next month's Vogue, that Bible of chic heralded "the plain bag movement". Its editorial declared: "It is no longer chic to flash big logo IDs or be weighed down by X-large bags. Sleek and unadorned were bywords for chic."But, despite the new trend for smaller logos, the latest must-have handbags still sell for hefty prices – upwards of £600. Next season, when the fashion pack grabs Céline's envelope, Alexander Wang's frame bag, Chloé's duffle or Mulberry's satchel, the dent in their pockets will be deep.Christmas sales of handbags are always high, but Selfridges reports that handbag sales are up on last year. (See box, facing page.)Expensive handbag buying can be explained in sociological terms. As the French theorist Jean Baudrillard noted, consumption, rather than production, is the driver in capitalist societies. He pointed to the symbolic value of an object – the value assigned to an object by society – and its "sign value" – its value within a system of objects. So while an expensive handbag has no added functional benefit over a cheaper model, what it says about the owner is priceless.And buyers don't seem to care about the price. Luca Solca, a senior research analyst in the European general retail and luxury goods sector at Sanford C Bernstein, says: "Handbags work as 'markers': given their recognisable shape, design patterns and – in many cases – visible logos, consumers can use them to 'tick the box' and show that they 'belong'. I see no other product category that can provide this function so effectively for women."Where men tend to use watches as their status symbols, many women – even those without cars, homes and any savings in the bank – have an expensive handbag. One leather goods designer who has benefited from women's obsession with bags is Graeme Ellisdon, who founded Osprey 30 years ago."Ah, the language of handbags," he cries. "Your handbag says as much about you as the car you drive: it's intensely personal. And while a woman's choice of handbag is probably something that most men don't consciously notice, other women clock immediately. Obvious logos are one thing but also we're a design-savvy nation, so while some might be impressed by your spending power, women are just as likely to judge whether your bag suits you, is the right shape or size, or a glorious colour."Handbags win over shoes or clothes for sheer ease of purchase. No sweaty, stressful changing room and it doesn't matter if you are having a "fat day". The handbag will always fit.But the handbag is not just a symbol of perceived wealth. Mulberry's chief executive, Godfrey Davis, says women also appreciate the investment a good bag represents. The company sells bags ranging between £400 and £900, with a few made of exotic skins selling at around £3,000."There is a misconception that only rich people buy expensive bags, but a huge proportion are bought by people as an investment. Clothes go out of fashion, whereas leather goods – in a neutral shade – last throughout the seasons. You can buy it in May, but you can also buy it at Christmas. We have few markdowns and discounts because we don't sell off old styles. This is also attractive to the consumer because they know if they buy a Bayswater bag it will not be suddenly out of fashion. So spending £700 on a bag you use every single day, works out cheaper, over time, than the daily morning coffee."Mr Ellisdon believes the obsession with bags will endure. "This climate of economic uncertainty has an upside: it makes customers more discerning in what they buy. Whereas the trend used to be to buy ostentatious luxury, with logos and large monograms, now the move is towards genuine quality, hand-stitching and the best leathers," he says.It is not just established home players that want a piece of the action in the UK. Coach, the US leather goods company, is keen to join in. It has hired the property adviser Michael Horwitz & Co to find stores in London and plans to open in the capital's Westfield shopping centre and Bond Street within months.However, within the sophisticated fashion worlds of Europe and the US, the handbag sector remains in its infancy, relatively speaking.Erwan Rambourg, a luxury and sporting goods analyst at HSBC, says: "Apart from a few exceptions, such as Japan, the penetration of high-end handbags is relatively low compared with its potential. Intelligent marketing by brands, which are promoting different uses – such as going out, going to work, weekend, night, day, and so on – is supporting growth. Most sales are still driven by recruitment, ie, the first-time buyers rather than repeat purchasers. But we believe handbags will not lose out to other categories such as watches or accessories. We see all categories in luxury growing together."The luxury goods brands focus on handbags and accessories because they are more profitable than clothing. Mr Rambourg says: "Generally, leather goods are more profitable because the accessories don't have to be made in different sizes and don't go into sale. Many brands have seen leather goods and accessories increase as a percentage of sales. Burberry is a good example of this."European and US markets are, in fact, just the tip of the iceberg for the sector. "Globalisation has meant the whole of the world follows the same trends," says Mr Davis."Now, the bestseller in New York and London is the bestseller in Korea and Hong Kong, too. The Chinese market, for instance, is catching up quickly. Whereas it might have taken Europe 30 years to become sophisticated buyers, the Chinese, who may have been interested in big logos, will quickly move on to become sophisticated buyers. This is why there is terrific growth potential in China for European brands with classic products."There are many cities in China the size of Birmingham, with huge potential. And, whereas previously they made up a tiny percentage, we are already seeing many buyers in London from China and Brazil."Even smaller UK names are seeing the potential. After opening a London flagship for Osprey in Covent Garden, Mr Ellisdon is plotting a move into the China market.China's luxury goods market is still dominated by male consumers. Watches, for example, have been an important growth driver so far, but analysts predict the handbag is the heir apparent.Jonathan De Mello, the head of retail consultancy at property adviser C B Richard Ellis, says: "There has been a big change in the type of customers shopping in Bond Street and Sloane Street, with the Chinese replacing the Russians as the pre-eminent shopper group. Chinese, Russian and Middle Eastern shoppers are attracted to London because of the high taxes levied on imported Western goods in their domestic markets, which makes purchasing these products in Europe 20 to 30 per cent less expensive for them. They are also attracted by the cachet of purchasing a luxury item from its country of origin. Many retailers trading in London's principal luxury streets have recognised this trend, and a number have recruited Chinese- and Russian-speaking staff as a result."The handbag phenomenon has, meanwhile, created successful careers in the UK for many new designers. One of the edgiest is Katie Hillier, who has a personal collection of more than 2,000 bags. Having worked her magic for brands including Luella, Hogan, and Marc by Marc Jacobs, she launched her own line of accessories this year.Although still a small part of the luxury sector, handbags are playing an important role in its growth. Based on the 2009 survey from Altagamma and Bain Consulting, accessories and leather goods account for 24 and 12 per cent respectively of the sector.The latest figure, for the luxury goods sector as a whole in 2009, was ¤153bn (£130bn), with the market estimated to have expanded to ¤168bn during 2010.Luxury goods are in fashion with investors this season as well. Recent bid speculation has circled Burberry, which saw a 96 per cent rise in its share price this year. While LVMH's stealth stake-building in rival Hermès shows the sector has plenty more growth – and thousands more handbags to be sold for silly prices worldwide.Osprey launches flagshipGraeme Ellisdon, who founded the leather goods manufacturer Osprey 30 years ago, is in talks to open a flagship London store at St Martin's Courtyard in Covent Garden. The business sells its own-designed handbags and leather goods, as well as furniture and homewares. Mr Ellisdon first made his name designing belts for Paul Smith and Princess Diana in the 1980s. The company now has seven designer outlet stores and two full-price stores in the UK.Top five bestselling handbags at SelfridgesMulberry: Alexa: £750Alexander Wang: Rocco: £795Chloé: Paraty: £800Marc by Marc Jacobs: Hillier Hobo: £350Michael Kors: Hamilton Tote: £320With a return to Nineties grunge tailoring on the cards, her signature ascetism is more relevant than ever.But her eponymous label isn't enjoying a revival so much as celebrating its endurance; Demeulemeester's clothes have a cult following of devoted fans, built up over the 23 years since she first showed at London Fashion Week, one of the so-called Antwerp Six, alongside Dries van Noten and Walter van Beirendonck.Demeulemeester, 51, offers a practical code for modern dressing, a range of high-end staples and classics rendered in her own idiosyncratic and luxurious tastes – and available now as a more accessible capsule collection for online emporium thecorner.com."The purpose of it is to offer some pieces that are typical and minimalist," she explains. "Just to have some good pieces in your wardrobe that hopefully you would wear for a long time."The collection contains some of Demeulemeester's "hall of fame" items: a precisely cut, long-line leather waistcoat; tapering black trousers in her preferred peg cut; a cashmere black tank spattered with white flecks; and capacious and stylishly saggy black leather shoulder bag. All pieces are what Demeulemeester has become known for, along with her crisply tailored shirts, flowing long skirts and stompy leather boots, and which are now being emulated by newcomers such as Alexander Wang and Simone Rocha. "They're classic minimal pieces," she says of the purist look that she has made her own. "I've made this stuff for 20 years every day – it's my universe."It's a universe that is regularly slapped with the "Gothic" sticker, thanks to the designer's preoccupation with a monochrome palette. "For me, Gothic is something from my youth, when I had a heavy metal phase," she laughs. "It's too easy to say that orange is happy and black is sad. To me, black is perfect. You can fill it with the emotion you want to express. My work has always been about authentic feeling, and I think we live in a time where we need that."Demeulemeester built the foundation for her brand during times almost as straitened as these. She turned to fashion only after an interest in portraiture led her to concentrate on the personality as expressed through clothing, and to study at Antwerp's Royal Academy. After she brought her first collection to London, it was bought in its entirety by Barneys and Demeulemeester's fusion of minimalism, menswear and modernised Victoriana entered the mainstream."I think it was an advantage that people discovered at the same time six new designers from a country nobody had heard of," she shrugs. "I tried to believe that if I was doing something that was not there, then I had a chance. I made things that I would love to wear – it was the only way I could do it, otherwise I was not interested."Demeulemeester's single-mindedness borders on intransigence, but it is born of a passion for her aesthetic. For many years, she was her own fit model, and works with her husband, photographer Patrick Robyn, to create the menswear range that she launched in 1996. The couple have been together since their late teens."I can make 10 jackets of the same colour, same two pockets and same length, that will look like 10 completely different jackets when you put them on," she says. "It's about the way they are cut – it makes them look and feel completely different, and move differently, and that's a never-ending study. People who wear my clothes will know exactly what I mean."Ann Demeulemeester for The Corner is available now. thecorner.comMen's ready-to-wear A/W 2011/2012 January/February InternationalThe fall/winter 2011/12 collections will be showcased in European fashion capitals, with Milan starting the presentations (January 15-19), followed by Paris (January 20-23). London Fashion Week, which presents women's and men's collections during the same period, will run from February 18-23. In New York, men's and women's ranges will be shown alongside each other from February 10-17.Hong Kong Fashion Week A/W 2011/2012 January 17 - 20 Hong KongAs the largest annual fashion industry gathering in Asia, the fair hosted over 1,700 exhibitors from 24 countries and drew more than 21,000 buyers from 92 countries in 2010. The event has steadily expanded its World Boutique section, which showcases designer labels from the U.S. and Europe. Various collections including women's wear, men's wear, children's wear, sportswear, lingerie, swimwear, evening wear, as well as fashion accessories, shoes and costume jewelry will once again be presented during Hong Kong Fashion Week.Berlin Fashion Week A/W 2011/2012 January 19-22 Berlin, GermanyGermany's most progressive couturiers, including Kilian Kerner, Lala Berlin, Patrick Mohr, Perret Schaad, and Anja Gockel will showcase their collections during the 8th Mercedes-Benz Berlin Fashion Week, which will run concurrently with the capital's biggest street and urbanwear fair Bread & Butter (January 19-21).Haute Couture A/W 2011/2012 January 24-28 Paris, FranceThe world's leading haute couture week, which had been reserved for dramatic fashion shows presenting out-of-this-world creations by designers such as Jean Paul Gaultier, Givenchy, or Chanel, has added haute jewelry to its roster. The field's most prestigious brands such as Boucheron, Cartier, Chaumet, and Van Cleef & Arpels now complement France's most storied couturiers. This year, runway shows and presentations will run from January 24- 27.São Paulo Fashion WeekJanuary 28- February 2São Paulo, BrazilStarted in 1996, São Paulo Fashion Week has evolved into the most important fashion event in Latin America and has elevated itself onto the same playing field as the prestigious fashion weeks in Paris, Milan, New York and London. Expect to see catwalk shows by major Brazilian labels like Ricardo Almeida, Reinaldo Lourenço, and Ronalda Fraga, as well as by luxury European brands like Chanel and Versace. The most anticipated event of SPFW is by far the presentations of sexy Brazilian beachwear lines like Amir Slama's Rosa Cha.Copenhagen Fashion Week A/W 2011/2012 February 2-6 Copenhagen, DenmarkNorthern Europe's largest fashion event draws some 60,000 designers, buyers, and press twice a year (every February and August). Danish fashion is known for its unique angle on design, innovation and aesthetics with a more modern approach to femininity and functionality, expressed in fresh silhouettes. Coupled with its leading trade fairs CPH Vision, Gallery and the Copenhagen International Fashion Fair, the Danish capital is quickly cementing its status as a global fashion hub.New York Fashion Week A/W 2011/2012 February 10-17 New York, USThe event kicks off the women's ready-to-wear season in the four fashion capitals (the other three being London, Milan, and Paris), the most important time in the fashion half-year. American designers including Michael Kors, Alexander Wang, and Calvin Klein will all showcase their collections.London Fashion Week  A/W 2011/2012 February 18-23 London, UKFollowing New York's Fashion Week, London's event brings together established British designers including Richard Nicoll and Pual Smith, and new talents like the actress-cum-designer Sienna Miller who founded Twenty8Twelve with her sister. Issa London, the Brazilian designer who made the now-famous sapphire blue dress that Kate Middleton wore to announce her engagement to Prince William, is among those scheduled to stage a catwalk show. London Fashion Week will showcase both women's and men's collections. Women's ready-to-wear A/W 2011/2012 February/March InternationalThe fall/winter 2011/12 collections will be showcased in European fashion capitals, with Milan starting the presentations (February 23- March 1). The fashion week in the French capital will wrap up the season between March 1-9 after the programs in New York, London, and Milan. The most anticipated shows comprise the biggest names in the industry such as Balenciaga, Dior, Chanel and local French favorites Isabel Marant and Sonia Rykiel.Tokyo Fashion Week A/W 2011/2012 March 19-25 Tokyo, JapanJapan's design stars including Rei Kawakubo (Comme des Garçons) or Yohji Yamamoto have long been showing their collections outside Tokyo, but the city remains a breeding ground for exciting, up-and-coming talent made in Japan. Japan Fashion Week will be held concurrently with its prestigious global fashion fair Livingroom in Tokyo (March 22-24).Moscow Fashion Week A/W 2011/2012 March 31- April 5 Moscow, RussiaThe biggest fashion event in Eastern Europe will celebrate its 11th year in existence this year, showcasing the best in Russian design as well as from the former Soviet republics: Ukraine, Byelorussia, Lithuania, Kazakhstan, Georgia, etc.Barcelona Bridal Week May 10-15 Barcelona, SpainThe 21st Bridal Week, which sees shows and presentations from domestic and international designers including 'Queen of the Wedding Dress' Vera Wang, outshines New York Bridal Week (April 9-11) as the leading event in the field given the event's history and prestige. This year, some 240 brands are expected to exhibit in the 30,000-square-meter space and as many as 30 bridal fashion catwalk shows will be staged for the 13,800 expected attendees.Australia Fashion Week S/S 2011/12May 2-6 Sydney, AustraliaRosemount Australian Fashion Week is the Asia Pacific's premier stop on the international fashion week circuit joining Paris, Milan, New York and London. The five-day official schedule includes on-site collection shows held within state-of-the-art collection showrooms, off-site collection shows, The Gallery and The Presentation Suites at The Westin Sydney.Men's ready-to-wear S/S 2011/12 June/July InternationalThe spring/summer 2012 men's collections will be showcased in European fashion capitals, with Milan starting the presentations (June 18-22), followed by Paris (June 23-26).London Fashion Week S/S 2011/12 September 17-22 London, UKJust one day after the end of the shows in New York, the London Fashion Week begins. House of Holland, Julian Macdonald, Matthew Williamson, Acne, Peter Pilotto, Erdem and Burberry Prorsum are some of the brands showing their spring-summer collections in London, considered the most avant-garde of the four big fashion weeks.Milan Fashion Week S/S 2011/12 September 21-27 Milan, ItalyAfter London and before Paris, the fashion crowd moves to Milan to look at the women's spring-summer 2011 collections. Expect great shows from the likes of Dolce & Gabbana, Giorgio Armani, Fendi, Gucci and Prada.Paris Fashion Week S/S 2011/12 September 28-October 6 Paris, FranceThe season of spring-summer ready-to-wear shows ends in Paris with legendary houses like Chanel, Jean Paul Gaultier, Balenciaga, Yves Saint Laurent, Sonia Rykiel, Maison Martin Margiela, Louis Vuitton and Christian Dior.Haute Couture S/S 2011/12 July 4-7 Paris, FranceThe world's leading haute couture week, which had been reserved for dramatic fashion shows presenting out-of-this-world creations by designers such as Jean Paul Gaultier, Givenchy, or Chanel, has added haute jewelry to its roster. The field's most prestigious brands such as Boucheron, Cartier, Chaumet, and Van Cleef & Arpels now complement France's most storied couturiers. This year, runway shows and presentations will run from July 4-7.New York Fashion Week S/S 2011/12 September 8-15 New York, USThe biggest American designers, such as Tommy Hilfiger or Ralph Lauren, will show alongside fresh talent, including Prabal Gurung and Alexander Wang, when the Big Apple kicks off fall's fashion month.Tokyo Fashion Week S/S 2011/12 September 17-21 Tokyo, JapanTokyo's Fashion Week wraps up the global fashion presentations and runway shows for the S/S 2012 season.The Ace is supremely hip, from its bearded, lithe doormen to the rock music-themed cocktails (Pablo Honey, Lust for Life, London Calling). The main lounge is an everyday sanctum for Apple Mac users to chill out in; hotel guests and local itinerant freelancers alike combine to make the ground floor feel like a real hub, although jostling for seats can be aggravating. Later in the day, a roster of DJs spin their tunes here.Still, it's definitely worth staking a claim on one of the sofas or long benches to soak up a bit of the Ace's atmosphere; it's not often that a hotel becomes such a focus for so varied a scene, and people-spotting here can be rewarding.Happily, there are plenty of other places to pop a squat around the former boarding house, built in 1904. The Ace has two restaurants attached to it, a sandwich bar and an acclaimed coffee shop, Stumptown Roasters, whose rich aromas waft enticingly into the lobby.The Breslin Bar and Dining Room is the latest Michelin-starred offering from April Bloomfield and Ken Friedman, of Manhattan's ultra-exclusive gastropub The Spotted Pig, specialising in meaty feasts. It's fantastic for dinner but also a brilliant lunch option (adjustable waistband advised), when it's a little quieter and easier to get a table.On the other side of the building, the John Dory Oyster Bar focuses more on cocktails, devised by Sasha Petraske of trendy members' bar Milk & Honey, and seafood sharing platters masterminded by Bloomfield. If it all sounds a bit name-dropperish, it probably is (and be prepared to queue for a table) but the food, drink and service don't suffer for it.Also attached to the hotel is a branch of the newly cult and achingly cool department store Opening Ceremony, which stocks labels such as Comme des Garçons, Alexander Wang and numerous in-house collaborations with big name stars, such as Chloë Sevigny. Its wacky and original conceptual interior and installations are worth a visit in their own right.LocationAce aficionados can buy tote bags from reception emblazoned with the hotel's locale: West 29th Street and Broadway. The area might not be much to shout about just yet, but the hotel is determined to make it so, and the surroundings are showing signs of improvement.The allure of the Ace is that it's situated in an area where people live. That's not to say it's far from the tourist attractions (the Empire State Building is a matter of blocks away, as is the Theatre District) but it means there are plenty of good cafés, delis and laid-back restaurants in walking distance. The newly extended High Line – a park built on a former railway – is a few blocks away, too, and provides a pleasant place to stroll.ComfortDespite its highly stylised conceit, the Ace offers rooms catering for a range of budgets, from "cheap", via "small" to "large" and "loft". Some rooms have bunk beds and, since the aesthetic of the place is quite urban vintage anyway, these functional and basic rooms still manage to look fairly chic.Décor revolves around idiosyncratic, often novelty, touches – many rooms are furnished with electric guitars, mini-bars are encased in rock star-style rider cases, and bathrooms look near-institutional with their white tiles and heavy iron fixtures. In one room, the wall above the bed reads "Play Safe"; in another, the mirror above the sink reads "Love is Meant to Make Us Glad". Elsewhere, there are murals and abstract smearings. This may all sound a little hokey but it works within the starkness of the hotel's interiors.It all makes for a practical, slick and bohemian setting, entirely in-keeping with the Ace's personality, but devoid of some of the luxuries one might want, or indeed expect, when paying prices towards the top end of the scale – a bunk room goes for about $360 (£240) a night. That said, the rooms are spacious and light, beds are comfy and many windows have a prize view of the lower floors of the Empire State Building.Ace Hotel, 20 West 29th Street, New York City, US (001 212 679 2222; acehotel.com/newyork)Rooms ****Value ***Service ****Doubles start at $415 (£277), room only.FOR: Rhiannon HarriesDespite the appealing insouciance of the expression, there are few stylish items of clothing that one can honestly claim to have "thrown on". Not so the cape, however. In fact, the act of slinging a cape around one's shoulders pretty much sums up the appeal of what will, if designers have their way, be the outerwear of the season – relaxed, artless, yet undeniably theatrical and dynamic. You could hardly say the same of struggling with the toggles on last winter's hipster choice – the duffle coat – could you? For all its simplicity, the cape is one of the hardest working garments in fashion this season, popping up in multiple forms across the catwalks – often within the same collection – and lending itself to all manner of contrasting aesthetics.Some of the references are familiar. Hussein Chalayan accessorised a voluminous camel version with binoculars for an old-school explorer vibe, at Missoni the rough-hewn patchwork knit had a nomadic, tribal feel, and it was all hunting and fishing with quilting and houndstooth at Daks. Elsewhere, the cape proved it could rise to more unexpected challenges.Alexander Wang's smart, mannish offering eschewed soft volume for sharp shoulders and straight lines. Erdem and Jaeger used hand embroidery and cut-out details, respectively, to emphasise that its practicality could be matched by prettiness. And at Yves Saint Laurent, Stefano Pilati brought out the cape's subversive side, offsetting the primness of waist-length versions by rendering them in transparent PVC (bravo, Signor Pilati – more designer clothes should be wipe-clean I feel).My favourite cape, however, though was the show-stopper at Celine. Knee-length white sheepskin, it looked like all your Christmases rolled into one gloriously cosy, glamorous garment. And that, in a nutshell, is the beauty of the cape; comfort and style in generous and equal measure. Cape refuseniks will tell you that they are impractical and seriously restrict your arms, but unless you have a day of semaphore practice planned, the inconvenience is slight. I speak from experience, having spent most of last winter in a cape (such is the central heating in my house that I wore mine to bed on a couple of occasions).Make no mistake, I may have been an early convert but I'm by no means an adventurous dresser. Ordinarily, I am too lazy to buy into high fashion looks involving towering heels or complicated necklines and too self-conscious for serious, statement pieces. So I was delighted to find that wrapping myself in what was essentially a nice, warm blanket with a couple of gold buttons (vintage St Michael by Marks & Spencer courtesy of my great aunt) garnered more approval from stylish peers than anything else I've owned. In fact, it was such a roaring success, it meant I could wear even more boring clothes than usual underneath and all was forgiven.While interviewing the American singer Rufus Wainwright, he barely seemed aware of my presence in the room until I stood up to go and put on my cape. "That is soooo cute!" he drawled, suddenly full of a new-found respect. I should never have taken the darn thing off. And if the superficial and fleeting warmth of a pop star isn't enough to convince you, remember that in a British winter you will spend so much time in your coat that you will come to be partly defined by it. So if you are aiming for Grace Kelly on Oscars night then you'll take my advice and invest in Halston Heritage's divine black cashmere cape. If, however, you'd rather be Kenny from South Park, then, by all means, buy a parka.AGAINST: Carola LongWay back last winter, when capes appeared on the catwalk as a major trend, I was quite excited about them. Here was a piece we hadn't seen for a while; a rather novel and dramatic addition to the outerwear themes that tend to come and go on rotation; military detailing, leather jackets or boyfriend coats. As autumn closes in, however, and the time to buy a cape is nigh, guess what? I've lost interest. The cape is one of those items I happily flirted with from a safe distance, but when it comes to making the relationship permanent I've got cold feet (and potentially cold arms and a cold stomach). It's just not a serious coat, a keeper like a peacoat or a cosy blanket wrap style.I don't loathe capes; they don't make me shudder in the way that clip-in hair extensions or the words "unexpected item in bagging area" do. I'll admit they have a certain dramatic, and sometimes sweetly eccentric charm, but perhaps some of that originality is cancelled out when it's a trend with a capital T. And in a season focusing on so-called real clothes – on understated, pure and practical pieces – the cape seems a bit of an attention-seeking anomaly. Like very small bags that denote that the wearer is a streamlined fashion goddess who doesn't need to carry around such pedestrian stuff as tissues and umbrellas, the cape is for people who don't worry about trailing garments getting stuck in Tube doors in a horrible rush-hour version of Isadora Duncan in her Bugatti or other prosaic matters such as getting pneumonia from cold draughts.Capes also limit what you wear, because they work best with trousers, preferably peg, straight or skinny ones. Pair one with a maxi skirt and you could look like the grim reaper. With an A-line skirt? Too triangular. Wide trousers, too, need a slimmer line on top to balance out the proportions. Capes are a classic good-on-the-hanger or catwalk piece; the white furry Celine version looks like quite the most sophisticated cosy piece you could wish to own, but in everyday life isn't there a danger of resembling an overgrown child playing a sheep in the school nativity play?And there's the thing; for every free spirited style icon who makes the cape look achingly cool there's a risk of resembling Dracula, Little Red Riding Hood, Batgirl and numerous other superheroes. Edna Mode the wardrobe mistress character in The Incredibles who evokes Anna Wintour and Hollywood costume designer Edith Head, certainly wouldn't approve of this particular trend. When designing outfits for Mr and Mrs Incredible she recounts the superheroes whose flowing robes have caused their demise before decreeing, "no capes." Even the new Sherlock Holmes has traded in his cape for a much more dashing greatcoat.It used to be that the only directives with socks were these: make sure they match, and make sure you take them off first when seducing someone, to avoid that awkward stockinged-feet-and-bare-leg stage. But as socks become a trend in their own right, it's time to put a bit more thought into the space between your statement trousers and your must-have footwear. It's time to pull them up – quite literally.Visionary designer Miuccia Prada has long made use of socks as a styling tool, usually plumping for pairs of the downright dingy, ribbed grey-school-uniform variety. Needless to say, they're fabulous. This season, in her Miu Miu collection, they were conspicuously smoothed up calves between platform brogues and printed half-mast trousers, a bit of eye-catching frumpiness in an otherwise vibrant show. It's a tricky look to pull off – and one which will buck against all your aesthetic instincts – but choose pairs in nostalgic navy and grey (somehow black is still just too utilitarian) and hike them up to a height your nan would be proud of.Meanwhile, novelty numbers were once the preserve of the office idiot, but thanks to Meadham Kirchhoff and the stalwart Paul Smith, fancy patterns, lurid Lurex and bright colours are all back in vogue above your brogue. Frills, too, have made a reappearance, inspired by a retro revival of bobby-soxer-esque preppy, hipster tastes, but be sure to tone down the girlishness with androgynous shoes or chunky flatforms. Socks and heels can work, too – as witnessed at Alexander Wang and Dries Van Noten – but keep styles edgy rather than overtly feminine, for fear of straying too far into FHM territory.So begin, be bold and be brave. Remember that it is a far, far better thing to have your socks noticed for their coolness, rather than because you've made the mistake of pretending they don't exist and settled for a vomit-inducing trainer sock or an orthopaedic pop-sock. Take as your example the models at autumn's Comme des Garçons show and opt for simple white, let it slouch around your ankle and banish all thoughts of Michael Jackson.Fashion: A word in your shell, likeWith Chinese designers such as Vivienne Tam and Alexander Wang making their mark on Western shoppers in recent seasons, the latest addition to fashion's cultural revolution is jewellery designer Bao Bao Wan, who is set to cause a stir when her range launches at Matches this month. Wan is the granddaughter of pre-eminent Communist official Wan Li and a stalwart on the Beijing fashion scene. Vogue China's editor-in-chief loves her, and the It-girls over here are smitten too. From £630, at matchesfashion.comFace to watch: John Michael McDonaghThe writer/director brother of playwright Martin McDonagh shares his flair for black comedy, to judge by his feature debut The Guard. A buddy-cop thriller, it opens next week's Edinburgh Film Festival following strong early reviewsLexpionage: Indeblattergable, adj.Relentlessly determined and energetic in resisting mystifying attacks on the competence/rectitude of oneself and one's colleagues; never willing to accept fault or the bleedin' obviousSocial networking: Match the tweet to the starRob Brydon, Sarah Ferguson, Imogen Thomas, Alec Baldwin1 Oh dear....!2 My first tweet. Maybe I needed a glass of wine beforehand. I feel....so shy.3 Keep strong Cheryl Cole, you give joy to many4 Thank you, the consensus is that there were no poles...Answers at the bottom of the pageOn the radar: Because some things are still worth getting excited about...Theatre: Save Wilton'sBeguiling Victorian variety house Wilton's Music Hall may be forced to close after having its application for a renovation grant rejected. Help the rescue operation by donating money at justgiving.com/wiltonsMusic: One Band One MovieWatch and listen for this new east London season in which musicians follow a gig with a screening of a favourite film. First up, on Thursday, it's US folkie Sam Amidon and Chaplin classic Monsieur Verdoux. wegottickets.comComedy: The Sitcom MissionThe X Factor for sitcoms is back, with a twist. For this year, in addition to the main event, there's sketch and character comedy, improv and Edinburgh previews. Mondays from tomorrow, comedy.co.uk/ sitcom_missionApp watch #21: GlastonburyShould you be one of the envied ticket-holders, this Orange-produced and gratifyingly battery-efficient virtual guide will help you navigate the Fields of Avalon with its programmable planner, interactive map and live news feed. That's assuming you can avoid all smartphone/portable-loo accidents, of course. Free from major app storesMATCH THE TWEET: 1. IMOGEN THOMAS; 2. ALEC BALDWIN; 3. SARAH FERGUSON; 4. ROB BRYDON.In fact, as the shelf-lives of models become as short and as unpredictable as that of a pack of ready-to-eat avocados, denizens of the professions are looking to expand their relevance, whether into the realm of entertainment, as an entrepreneur or simply as a global megabrand.Heidi Klum and Tyra Banks have chosen television, and are arguably more famous for hosting Project Runway and America's Next Top Model respectively than they ever were as mannequins. Helena Christensen is now a photographer. Milla Jovovich has played Joan of Arc on the big screen, while Amber Valetta was a vengeful wraith; Karen Elson became Mrs Jack White, recorded an album and famously went through showbusiness's most amicable divorce.Deyn, 29, recently admitted to having fibbed about how old she was, when she was signed in 2006 at the age of 24. "When I really decided to do modelling, I was 18," she told the press this week. "That was quite old, so a little later we knocked off a few years."She had said, in a magazine interview around the time of her astronomical ascent, that she had been born in 1989. And who can blame her, when designers at New York Fashion Week earlier this month were asked not to use girls under 15? (They did, regardless.)But the great dilemma facing young models who make it big is the threat of being washed up before they're 25. The rise of social media has gone some way to giving models a bit of clout beyond their booking agents and the whims of the fashion editors – successful models such as Coco Rocha and Sasha Pivovarova have harnessed the power of Twitter and Google+ to such an extent that brands now approach them because they have a following in their own right. They are, quite literally, not just pretty faces.However, there's always a danger of becoming too ubiquitous and accessible, and if that happens, then high-end houses won't want you for their shows. And, obviously, remaining exclusive is difficult when you need the money.But if the past decade has been characterised by the comeback phenomenon, from boy bands to soap stars and TV shows, then the world of modelling has been at the forefront of the career re-birth. Vogue first touted the "supermodel revival" in 2006, but it's in the past few years that the original supers have really come back to claim the catwalks. Naomi Campbell (who, let's not forget, has previously tried her hand at writing and singing) closed Roberto Cavalli's show in Milan on Monday, while Linda Evangelista is the current cover star of LOVE magazine. Kristen McMenamy too, closed Alexander McQueen's McQ show in London, and is in high demand as a model who knows her stuff and has a certain confidence that younger names are yet to earn.Shalom Harlow and Yasmin le Bon modelled for Stella McCartney last week in London, and Gisele Bundchen made an appearance on Alexander Wang's catwalk during the New York shows. Even Twiggy pops up on the odd front row and Marks and Spencer ad.But the best and most impressive comeback of recent years has to be Sixties super Veruschka, whose Teutonic good looks punctuated the rise of fashion as we know it: she appeared in full feather-headressed glory at Giles Deacon's show in 2010, at the age of 70. Which just goes to show that lying about your age is thoroughly passé."This is a song to all these people from fashion who I adore and who helped me to realise my dream," he said. And then this diminutive figure, normally backwards in coming forwards and far from famed for posturing either on the catwalk or off it, sang."When I was just a little boy, I asked my mother, what will I be...? Que sera, sera..." he crooned, and if the sound of it was unlikely ("I'm a terrible singer," Elbaz admitted) it seemed all the more incongruous given his not entirely down-with-the-kids uniform of thick-lensed, black-framed glasses, black trouser suit with studiously just-a-little-too-short trousers and just-a-little-off-centre bow tie.There are not many surprises left in fashion – you name it, someone, somewhere has done it – which perhaps accounts for the ovation that followed being more heartfelt than most. Let's face it, this is a world that boasts its fair share of these too. But then M Elbaz is a highly individual designer and easier to love than many for that. Over the past decade he has not only turned around the fortunes of Lanvin, which was languishing in obscurity when he took the helm in 2002, but has also come to represent a respect for craft, technique and talent over and above the usual obsession with marketing, merchandising and styling. This has earnt him many followers, both within the industry and outside it. Add to this the fact that Elbaz is open almost to the point of foolhardiness, warm to the point of brotherly, and, at the same time, clearly as strong as an ox, and the effect is as refreshing as it is potent. Make no mistake, behind this infinitely approachable exterior lurks a will of iron."There have been a lot of changes in fashion," he says when we meet in a quiet corner of the bar of the Hotel Crillon in Paris – Elbaz appears to feel very much at home amid the understated but unmistakeably grand, old-school ambience there. "And the question is how do you fit into it? Should you fit into it? ["Que Sera, Que Sera"] was a song, I thought, for the whole industry. You know how it is. One day people love you, you're in, the next day, you're out. One day you're fired, and one day you're hired. So it was a song for my colleagues. The future is not ours to see. What will be, will be. We are always trying to think who's going where, what will he do? Who is going to take over? What, when, why?"Elbaz refuses to name names. He doesn't need to. Rumours abound on who will – and won't – be presiding over some of fashion's most prestigious houses. The question of who is "in" or "out", as Elbaz puts it, has never seemed so pertinent. Before John Galliano had even cleared his desk at Dior last spring, every one of his contemporaries worth mentioning had been named as a possible successor. At Yves Saint Laurent, it can't have been easy for Stefano Pilati to complete his last two collections all while speculation regarding his imminent departure and the appointment of Hedi Slimane to that label was rife. Only days before the Lanvin show in question took place, meanwhile, while he too was working on what turned out to be his swansong collection for Jil Sander, Raf Simons was unceremoniously let go. The designer was visibly shaken when he stepped out to take his final bows. It wasn't until last month that his appointment as artistic director of Dior was announced."I've been there," says Elbaz. And indeed he has. "All of a sudden, this divorce is being published everywhere and everybody knows who said what and how difficult it is." It is, by now, the stuff of fashion history that, in 1998, Elbaz was hand-picked by Yves Saint Laurent to design his women's ready-to-wear. Elbaz was designing Guy Laroche at the time. "I was fascinated by the idea of working for a man [Saint Laurent] who was more of a legend, and more the name of a company, than a real person," he told me when we first met not long after. "But then I talked to him, he was so human and so down-to-earth that you kind of forgot that you are sitting with... With Marilyn Monroe!"Despite the fact that the critics applauded Elbaz's two-season tenure at Yves Saint Laurent, in 1999, the Gucci Group bought the name and self-proclaimed control freak and creative director, Tom Ford, was unable to resist the challenge of taking over himself. Elbaz was duly dismissed."It was hard," Elbaz has since said of that split. "Of course it was hard. There were times that I wondered whether I would ever be able to work in this business again. I was embarrassed to go out to fashion places, embarrassed to call people because I thought they would never call back."He promptly disappeared, leaving Paris to travel around the world. Thankfully for fashion, 12 months later, he returned and accepted the position at Lanvin, a French couture house founded, in 1909, by Jeanne Lanvin and bought by the Chinese-born entrepeneur, Shaw-Lan Wang in 2001. His first show for the label – a gentle mix of subtly-deconstructed tweeds shot through with barely-visible threads of gold and all worn with paper-thin ballerina pumps long before they were ubiquitous – immediately identified him as having something new, something lovely and something refreshingly woman-friendly to offer the world.That was then. Ten years later, we are looking at a hefty book published this month – a celebration of the achievement of Elbaz and his team at this still comparatively small but influential house. "I didn't want to do a very, very big book," Elbaz says, over a plate of magret de canard. "The book is small and fat. It's me." Also him, is the contrast between "the rich and the poor"; the plain cloth cover stamped unobtrusively with the Lanvin signature offset against gleaming gilded edges and the copious white space that belies the personal, even intimate, nature of the imagery shot by photographer But-Sou Lai, who has been working behind the scenes for some time.If it is the intention with most fashion books to blind readers with glamour and gloss, here we see instead the workings of the fashion process exposed. There are close-ups of pin cushions and loose threads, of floral-print fabrics and notoriously hard-to-handle gazars. Elbaz's cute drawings, often accompanied by words ("Nice dress," says one coquettish Parisienne to another) are seen alongside flat patterns, Stockman dummies and lasts. Models are photographed on the catwalk but more often in fittings, so too are seamstresses, secretaries and PRs at work. There are pictures of show running orders, seating plans, great dustbins full of Nespresso capsules, half-eaten food. This is about Lanvin as a team, and Elbaz is often present but, significantly, rarely centre stage."I thought that at a time like now, when the whole industry is about the six minutes of the show and a review that is being written in a taxi because then there is the next one, I thought, I'm going to show everyone how much effort goes into making a single dress," he says. "I wanted to show how many threads you have to put together to make one rose; how much thought goes into a button. I wanted to show a shoe in the factory in Italy being held like a baby by an old man and then attached to a machine as if it was going to the dentist. I wanted to show the jewellery. And I wanted to show the people. All the people. We had 3,000 pictures in total and we picked the ones we liked, of course, and then we went back to make sure that every single person involved is in the book, that nobody had been missed out. They are all part of it."The book opens with 100 white pages. "I was worried that people would think that was gimmick-y," Elbaz says. "But it's not about being cool. I hate the word cool. It gives me a rash. If you take something out of the freezer it's cold, but what happens when it melts? It's a cool party, a cool person, a cool collection. What does that mean? I'm more interested in things that are uncool, things that have a certain individuality, a certain soul, a certain longevity, emotion, fragility..."True to his word, each leaf is printed with decidedly uncool one-line Elbaz-isms: "If it's not edible, it's not food. If it's not wearable, it's not fashion." "In the winter we sell bathing suits, in the summer, coats. Go figure". "Day after day, season after season, we start with a dream."Alber Elbaz was born in Casablanca on 12 June, 1961 and grew up in the suburbs of Tel Aviv. His father was a hairdresser who died when he was 15, at which point his mother went to work as a waitress to support her four children: two sons, two daughters. Elbaz studied fashion at Shenkar College in that city. His teacher was Shelly Verthine, who co-edited the new book and remains Elbaz's close friend and creative collaborator. "Shelly was my teacher and is still my teacher," he says of a woman who remains integral to his work and is often seen by his side. "The mythological teacher who brings things out of you." Despite the fact that Elbaz oversees a Lanvin menswear collection too, his team is predominantly female.Following graduation, aged 24, Elbaz moved to New York and designed "mother-of-the-bride dresses for $150 – and that was expensive" before moving to Geoffrey Beene. It wasn't long before he was that elusive and revered designer's right-hand man. He remained there from 1989 to 1996, a lifetime in terms of fashion."It was an amazing place to work, the best school. I stayed there because I was happy working a little bit outside the circuit, because he had his vision about fashion, because he had the best style." The brilliant forefather of today's more minimally-minded designers, Beene was also entirely focused on design as opposed to the brouhaha that, to a greater or lesser extent, appears to spring up around it. He was also, Elbaz has said – and he is one of few who might claim truly to have known him – "a wonderful man". Elbaz then moved to Paris."Stay big in your work and small in your life," Alber Elbaz's mother always told him. "Be modest," is how he explains the words now. "I'm not a religious person in the regular sense but in the Bible you're not allowed to steal, you're not allowed to lie and you're not allowed to feel you're above other people."The designer's quieter way is surely an inspiration for a new generation less likely to rely on the notion of the superstar designer, as spearheaded by Tom Ford, ironically enough, and to concentrate on the clothes themselves. It is a position he continues to uphold without compromise to the point of being evangelical."I never met Sarah Burton in the past, for example," Elbaz says of the Alexander McQueen designer, "but when I saw a picture of her at the [royal] wedding and, while everybody was there with their pretty hats seated, she was the only one who didn't have a hat on and she was on the floor fixing the dress; I thought it was so beautiful I wrote her a note. And to see Phoebe [Philo, of Celine] who is doing such an amazing job and because she's having a baby she decides to do a smaller show and to care for that baby... I mean that is amazing. And, you know what, it will do her business no harm whatsoever. Quite the opposite. These are the moments that are important to me." It goes without saying that such kind words directed towards other designers – those who might be seen as competitors in an over-crowded market to boot – is unprecedented.Of the nature of fame, he says: "You ask people what they want to do and they say, 'I want to be famous' but I always say that fame is something that works perfectly if you want to get a good table at a restaurant in a hurry or you need a doctor and his secretary is into fashion. I want to go back to the real thing though, to actresses who act, painters who paint and designers who design. I was in Russia recently and I went to a department store. You know, you see the fashion, one rack here, one rack there, but then you go to the bag department and it's the size of Monaco, you go to the shoe department and it's like Arizona. It's enormous. And I'm thinking, maybe we should make women wear bags. But I was trained to do textiles, to do fabrics, and to dress women."And dress them he does, in traditional couture silks and satins alongside more technologically advanced materials and always, for the sake of modernity, with a vaguely industrial edge – a visible metal zip here, a neckline edged with brass there. For the forthcoming season, Elbaz thought nothing of designing jewellery so oversized that the only way to make it a practical reality was to use plastic in place of real stones."The sapphires, the emeralds the rubies, they're all plastic," he says happily of the great baubles and beads that will no doubt sell out within hours of arriving in store. He's equally pleased with a sequence of dresses made in the type of foam that is normally the preserve of underwear and, specifically, bras. "There's no fabric that is more intimate. It just holds you," Elbaz muses. It is testimony to the very personal nature of his work that Elbaz has, both for the forthcoming season and in the past, also adorned it with his own sketches: a rounded, bespectacled caricature of his own face has been known to appear. A light-hearted quality in no way detracts from his status as a serious technician, however. Elbaz's understanding of volume, drape and proportion and his respect for workmanship is second to none. In 2005, Elbaz won the Council of Fashion Designers (CFDA) International Award. In 2007 he was named Chevalier of the French Légion d'Honneur for his work.At the end of the soon-to-be published book, Elbaz writes: "Love and respect to Madame Wang, who asked me to wake up the Sleeping Beauty and allowed me to fly"."They are very good to me at Lanvin," he explains. "They give me my liberty. If we were part of a group it might be easier for me in some ways. We live on what we sell. We don't have anyone who says: 'Don't worry, we'll inject another 100 million and do a big publicity campaign'. So I always say that we're like a small yacht, not the Titanic, and that means we make our own decisions. Sometimes, when you work for big organisations, there are so many committees that you have to go through..."To say that Elbaz adopts a hands-on approach would be an understatement."That's how I spend my life," he says. "I start with drawings but I don't give the sketches to the atelier and then say, 'OK, I'll see you, I'll be in the Caribbean on the 17th and on the 18th I leave for Santa Fé'. No, I'm always in fittings, I'm always perfecting things. I'm always there. In the end, I don't think our industry is particularly scary. It's as scary as any mess and it seems to me that every industry is a mess. If you put 10 people together and they have power and they have strength, it's kind of dangerous."But I'm not afraid of the system. I'm part of it. Sometimes the system helps you. Sometimes it chokes you. You know, if you send me on vacation, I'm clueless, I can't even climb from a dinghy to a yacht. Can you imagine me on the beach? Maybe if I was a skinny, handsome man my career would have been different. Maybe then I would have been more, like, 'Hellooo, look at my dresses'." Instead, Alber Elbaz works tirelessly making others more beautiful. "I'm hiding in my studio somehow," he says. "And in my studio I feel loved and I love."'Alber Elbaz – Lanvin' is published by Steidl/Dangin, £250, and is available from Lanvin, 183 Mount Street, London W1, and via Wang, who has just barely got his feet wet in menswear with his T collection, beat out more obvious choices including Kirk Miller of Miller's Oath, Patrik Ervell, Derek Buse of Riviera Club, Joe Sadler and Greg Ullery, Michael Bastian for Gant, and Rick Klotz of Warriors of Radness."He was doing T-shirts and hoodies, and when we approached him, he said, 'Don't you think it's a little bit early on?'" GQ's creative director Jim Moore said at the award bash Thursday night that was attended by the likes of rapper fashionistos Kanye West and Swiss Beatz as well as Hollywood A-listers such as Jessica Alba. "I said no, I think you have the potential to be a great American menswear designer. It pushed him to expand his categories."Wang - chosen by a panel composed of designer Tommy Hilfiger, GQ editor-in-chief Jim Nelson, and Moore, among others - received a check for $50,000 and a mentorship with lifestyle brand Dockers, department store Bloomingdale's, and the editors of the magazine, and will also design a piece for a limited-edition Dockers collection. The designer has previously won the CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund and Swiss Textile Award.But don't let the cold turn you into a droopy-drawers – or rather, do! One of the biggest trends around for autumn is layering, playing with proportions, and looking a bit, well, baggy."Layering is a stylish way to stay warm during colder months, and is a key part of all the autumn/winter 2010 trends," explains Amy Zgraja, personal shopper for Topshop's Oxford Circus flagship. "Don't be afraid to mix textures and prints."It's a bit of an anti-fashion trend this season, given the array of ladylike tailoring and minimal pieces on the catwalk, but designers such as Ann Demeulemeester and Dries van Noten showed collections that mixed classic colours and formal effects with darker, more grungy pieces.Alexander Wang, meanwhile, layered deconstructed tailoring with sloppy knits and jersey casuals. And at the London shows last month, much of the audience could be seen in floaty, baggy pieces – not yet ready to let go of the off-duty-model style that has lapped around the periphery of fashion for the past few years.Wearing all your clothes at once requires a certain nonchalance, so be sure to look like you've just thrown everything together and it miraculously worked out. Try starting with leggings as a base, then add long, baggy vests and T-shirts, before topping everything off with an oversized cardigan or a short sweater. Alternatively, try dresses with cardigans or jumpers on top, cinched in with a skinny belt (one of this season's absolute must-haves) to give a little definition to your figure.This is no body-con trend, mind you, and those glamour pusses used to flashing the flesh will probably shy away from it. For the rest of us, it's time to embrace our inner librarian, pile on the knitwear and experiment with shape, proportion and a palette of chic-but-modern neutrals. Grey, navy, stone and blush are perfect for blending, and try complementing jersey, cotton and fine-gauge wool with leather, silk and chunky knitwear.When it comes to footwear, the low-heeled Victoriana lace-up boots around right now are perfectly bluestocking, but if you want to keep things slightly more urban (and a little less Brontë), then opt for wedge ankle boots – either chic, smart and feminine styles at Gap or sci-fi, block heel, cut-outs at All Saints and Office – or update your wooden-soled summer sandals by pairing them with some enormous woollen socks.Try some of the trickier lengths that are strewn across the high street stores right now: full-length skirts (some trailing the floor, others brushing the tops of your shoes); mid-length skirts (which fall to the middle of the shins); cropped blazers and knits; and sweater dresses that reach the knees. It might sound a little fusty on paper, but it's far from academic in the flesh.All in all, proportion and layering is a trend you can adapt to any sartorial preference. If you don't like skirts, try a long-line waistcoat over a T-shirt with some cigarette crops or harem pants; if you're looking for something more formal, a fitted knit dress of any length works well with cropped blazers, knits or leather jackets; and if you're ready to go all-out Scandinavian boho-grunge, then opt for the most directional pieces: a full-length skirt under a mid-length knit, topped off with a micro-crop jacket or jumper.And if it all sounds a little much, experiment with shorts and knee-socks – that's a whole new dimension to autumn dressing.She topped the NME Cool List at the end of last year, off the back of one song, "212", in which she swears more than 50 times. She is a fashion-world favourite, having played at parties for Chanel and Topshop, and was recently announced as the face of Alexander Wang's T Fall 2012 campaign.Banks studied at La Guardia High School – the Fame school.While she considers herself bisexual, she has told The New York Times: "I'm not trying to be, like, the bisexual, lesbian rapper. I don't live on other people's terms."She is yet to release her debut album. So far her output includes singles, a four-song EP, 1991, and a mixtape, Fantasea.Alexander Wang & Sally Hansen nail polish debutSeptember 10New York, NY, USANew York's hippest designer of the moment has collaborated with the beauty brand on his own line of nail polish that will premier alongside his spring/summer 2012 collection and might be commercialized thereafter.1st Makeup Show EuropeSeptember 17-18Berlin, GermanyTo debut in September 2011, The Makeup Show Europe will be embracing the international beauty and fashion capital of Germany, Berlin, to deliver a professionals-only beauty event organized in the same manner as its New York and Los Angeles fairs. The Makeup Show should expect to face some stiff competition from Beautyworld, Germany's largest beauty industry event, which has been an industry must-attend for years.Jessica Simpson beauty website launchOctoberOnlineAfter releasing several fragrances and starring in her own beauty-themed TV series, the singer is readying a new online destination called BeautyMint that will focus on anti-ageing skincare. Part of the BeachMint.com family, the website will be called BeautyMint.com and feature products that cost $30 each, with a new collection being released to its members each month.In addition to artistic new photography and rich visuals of its products - like the cult Orgasm blush or Turkish Delight lip gloss - the brand has mainly improved interactive features: you will find tutorials, behind-the-scenes footage, and advice from founder François Nars, who of course also enlisted his now-famous French bulldog Marcel for numerous photo shoots.Also, online shopping on the site should become a whole lot easier due to a quicker check-out process, better search functions, and iPhone/iPad compatibility.Die-hard fashion fans might recognize the new site's aesthetic: the masterminds behind it are CREATETHE Group, also responsible for the websites of NOWNESS, Marc Jacobs, and Alexander Wang.DiorHong KongFollowing eight months of expansion and renovation, Dior has reopened its Hong Kong flagship store. Made by American architect Peter Marino to resemble a luxurious apartment (a trend in luxury stores right now, as any visitor to the new Louis Vuitton stores will find), it includes an entire floor of bags, another one for ready-to-wear, knitwear, and shoes, and dedicated areas for Dior Homme, VIP shopping and cocktails to unwind after the shopping spree.1, Peking Road, Shim Tsa ShuiTrussardi 1911Rome, ItalyMarking the fashion house's 100th anniversary, Trussardi 1911 has opened a new flagship on one of Rome's most prestigious shopping streets. The store sells the Trussardi 1911 collections of men and women's clothing, leather goods, and luggage; a limited edition of bags has also been released for the occasion.Via dei Condotti 49/50Alexander WangNew York, USAThe Big Apple's wonderboy has opened his first standalone store in SoHo. White marble floors, black leather couches, and a fox-fur hammock match his New York urban sportwear chic perfectly.103 Grand Street, SoHoA.P.C.New York, USAThe French label has come up with something special for its latest store: called A.P.C. Special, the boutique by Bleecker Street will feature something different every time you stop by, from overstock to limited editions.92 Perry StreetAgent ProvocateurNew York, USAThe opening of the typically boudoir-inspired boutique of the lingerie label was one of the highlights during New York fashion week, with new face of the brand, Josephine de la Baume (also known as the fiancée of Mark Ronson) hosting and London magazine mogul Jefferson Hack spinning the decks.Agent Provocateur simultaneously opened a new store on Rodeo Drive in Los Angeles.675 Madison AvenueTom FordLos Angeles, USAThe American designer has opened his second freestanding store in the US, which has been designed specifically to present his new womenswear line.346 North Rodeo Drive, Beverly HillsLanvinLos Angeles, USAThe French fashion house has also just landed on Rodeo Drive, offering everything from men's to women's wear, and from shoes to jewelry.260 North Rodeo Drive, Beverly HillsRoland MouretLondon, UKArriving in the city's Mayfair district, Mouret's store will offer all of the designer's lines in addition to the store's limited edition, called Roland Mouret at 8 Carlos Place.8 Carlos PlaceFor a couple of decades, there has been a third way in the shape of the designer diffusion label. It's just that that third way was previously paved with flashy logos, checks and monograms and rendered in cheapo synthetic fabrics. Polo shirts, T-shirts, sports bags and other accessories put out under the auspices of big labels seemed to have little to do with the clothes that formed the high-fashion core of the brand.All that is changing at a brisk pace. Anita Barr, head of womenswear at Selfridges, agrees that there has been a marked shift in what designers are putting out there in the name of diffusion and how we in turn are responding to it. "The past two seasons you've really seen the impact of this new generation of diffusion brands," says Barr. "New lines such as Alice by Temperley and McQ from Alexander ' McQueen have done phenomenally well for us. Alexander Wang's T-shirt collections have also been a massive success.""I think it's because these labels are no longer watered-down versions of the main collections," she continues. "Of course, you still need some of the key elements from the main collection that the customer will recognise – the embellishment of Temperley, say, the drapery from Wang, or the cut of Alexander McQueen – but what they have now is their own design identity, which is why they have come back so much stronger since the old diffusion labels of the 1990s."Certainly the excitement surrounding recent launches, among them Boutique by British brand Jaeger and Heritage by the revived 1970s New York label Halston, suggests that these mid-range collections are hitting a particularly relevant spot at the moment. The buzz began to build months before Net-A-Porter became the first e-commerce outlet to stock cult French designer Isabel Marant's Etoile line, a lower-priced collection of basic items, earlier this year. The collection has been available for some years in France, but that is perhaps no surprise since the French have always led the way in chic, mid-range labels – diffusion or otherwise.Sarah Curran, CEO and founder of My-Wardrobe.com, cannily spotted the potential of the new genre of diffusion label when the site was conceived back in 2006. Its success has been built on a judicious selection of ranges such as Paul & Joe Sister, D&G and Anglomania by Vivienne Westwood. "At that time, there wasn't really a retailer occupying that middle space, but it was something I believed in because not everybody – very few people, in fact – have the disposable income to buy pieces from a main collection, so our focus has always been about 'bridge' brands," Curran explains."Obviously, in a recession that becomes more relevant because even people who bought designer in the past are looking for a realistic way to stay in touch with luxury. But it works in different directions – for designers, diffusion was originally a way to open up their brand to a wider audience."Curran agrees, however, that consumers nowadays are too design-savvy to accept the uninspired wares that used to pass for diffusion lines: "I think D&G is an excellent example of the total repositioning. Until five years ago that line was under license and it had become something that was really nothing to do with the main line.It was heavily logo-ed, a lot of denim, streetwear almost, which is so different from the glamour and polish of the ' brand – chalk and cheese. So they brought it back in-house and under the control of Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana. Now it's incredibly desirable – fabulous bags, shoes and incredible jackets. It's the perfect example of making something more accessible price-wise, but keeping it in a luxury space. Diffusion labels are not a poor cousin anymore."In fact, so keen are designers and retailers to move away from the old categories, that most prefer to avoid the "d" word when christening these new lines, either giving them an entirely different name or referring to them as a "weekend" collection. The industry term is "bridge" brand, a word that better reflects the new, dual status of the ranges in relation to the main collection as linked but separate entities.Curran points out that Miu Miu was originally a type of diffusion line for Prada, although the cachet it has acquired (and its prices) mean few would ever call it that.In some cases, the lower prices and appeal to a younger consumer produce a more playful aesthetic. "Designers can be a bit more adventurous, so you get the same handwriting, but with a few more quirks. It's fun, but with all the design integrity and quality you'd expect from a high-end label," says Barr, who cites Marc by Marc Jacobs as a prime example and arguable template for others since its launch in 2001.Among the items available in Jacobs' lower-priced line are the now-iconic "mouse" pumps – ballet flats complete with eyes, whiskers and tail drawn – and plentiful nylon bags emblazoned with off-beat illustrations. At the Marc by Marc Jacobs store in London's Mount Street you can get in on the action with only a quid to your name thanks to his cute lipstick-shaped pens and friendship bracelets. All of which have been phenomenally successful – not to mention lucrative – without damaging the kudos of his other work one bit.Alice Temperley, who this year added Alice by Temperley to her eponymous mainline, says that she too wanted to have a little more fun with her new label. "Temperley London is about investment pieces, whereas Alice is all about easy to wear staples for rock'n'roll, city girls," she says."It's by no means limited to that younger consumer, though," says Barr. "You have women who can and do buy high-end picking up such as the Wang tees to mix into their look."Curran agrees: "It's not just a price thing. I love Alexander McQueen, for instance, but even if I could afford it, it just wouldn't suit my life to wear it every day."She admits that brands such as Anglomania and Moschino Cheap and Chic are, though more affordable than their "big sister" labels, stronger on the "chic" side of things than the "cheap": "You do get some pretty hefty prices, I'm well aware of that. But if you love fashion and clothes, then what you are getting is two or three items of designer-quality clothing, including substantial pieces such as dresses and coats, for the price you would have had to pay for one small thing from the main line."No escaping some sort of compromise, then. But if it means living on baked beans for a month in order to end up with a couple of great outfits as opposed to a postage-stamp sized clutch, it doesn't sound like such a bad one.Erin Wasson's skincare, hair masks, and mascaraThe model-turned-designer who just parted ways with US label RVCA won't have any problems staying in the fashion game, given her styling gig for Alexander Wang and her status as streetstyle icon. As for what products she uses to maintain her natural look, she just told website StyleList: "When I wake up, I'm using ... I'm obsessed with 's oils. I travel so much that my skin gets really dry." She also likes from Maybelline, for which she is a spokesmodel, and 's jasmine hair masks: "The products are all in French, so you don't really know what it is, but you just know that it works."Eva Mendes's favesThe actress, who currently graces the cover of Allure magazine, listed the following products as her beauty essentials: for her skin, she prefers and , Benefit's , Dr. Hauschka's , Mario Badescu's , and Estee Lauder's perfume. When it comes to her locks, she swears by Pssst and coconut oil.Lauren Conrad's products on the goWhat's in the reality star's handbag? According to Us Weekly magazine, Conrad relies on ointment to keep her skin smooth while she travels. For a quick pick-me-up before meetings, she says she uses a brush to give her hair a well-maintained look.Alexander Wang bagged three nominations, while Marc Jacobs and Lady Gaga are to be bestowed the lifetime achievement and fashion icon awards respectively.CFDA chairwoman Diane von Furstenberg, who announced the nominees in New York March 16, said of Jacobs's reaction: "He's very happy, but he says it's only a half lifetime award because he's only halfway finished." Lady Gaga "started a fashion revolution," according to von Furstenberg.Here is the full list of nominees:Womenswear designer of the yearAlexander WangJack McCollough and Lazaro Hernandez for Proenza SchoulerMarc JacobsMenswear designer of the yearMichael BastianPatrik ErvellSimon SpurrAccessory designer of the yearAlexander WangJack McCollough and Lazaro Hernandez for Proenza SchoulerReed KrakoffSwarovski Award for womenswearJoseph AltuzarraAshley Olsen and Mary-Kate Olsen for The RowPrabal GurungSwarovski Award for menswearAlexander WangPhillip LimRobert GellerSwarovski Award for accessory designAlejandro IngelmoEddie BorgoJason WuPamela LoveGeoffrey Beene Lifetime Achievement AwardMarc JacobsInternational awardPhoebe Philo for CelineMedia awardHilary Alexander of The TelegraphFounders awardHal Rubenstein of InStyleFashion icon awardLady GagaSpecial tribute awardArthur ElgortThe eighth edition of the annual prize will again yield $300,000 for the winner and $100,000 each to two runners-up to help take their careers in fashion to the next level.In order to choose those most worthy of the award, a committee will meet with the finalists at their respective design studios, before each of them will be asked to create outfits especially for the competition, to be unveiled in October. The winners will be announced in New York City on November 14 at a gala dinner.Previous honorees include Alexander Wang, Proenza Schouler, Prabal Gurung, Derek Lam, and Thakoon.Here is the full list of the 2011 nominees, announced Thursday: - Antonio Azzuolo - Joseph Altuzarra - Carlos Campos - Shane Gabier & Chris Peters - Michelle Ochs & Carly Cushnie - Soraya Silchenstedt - Dana Lorenz - Alexa Adams & Flora Gill - Pamela Love - Max Osterweis & Erin BeattyThis is no way to shop the sales. It takes a cool-headed, calm and collected attitude that doesn't seem to tally with the sort of mind that rationalises bedding down on a pavement. If you do your sales shopping properly, the only camping you'll be doing is the sort that comes naturally with that Dolce & Gabbana leopard-print dress you've had your eye on all season.Get in the moodWith sales shopping, you get back what you put in – make the effort and you'll bag the best bargains. "Some people relish a long day spent trawling through the sale rails," Amanda Slader, head of fashion advice at John Lewis, says. "Some don't. Either way, you have to be in the mood – not tired or stressed or hung over."Go with someone elsePerhaps you take an "every man for himself" attitude to shopping; perhaps you can't bear the thought of trying to fish your mother or best friend out of a bargain basket covered in fluff. Either way, you'll need a companion to help you to avoid the siren call of last season's tat, so make sure you have a friend present to lash you to the mast and refuse your pleas to be allowed to try it all on.Think classic"Ask yourself why this piece hasn't sold," Amanda Slader says. "When there are rails and rails of one garment, you wonder why the nation has rejected it so vigorously. And it's usually to do with cut or pattern." Cashmere jumpers, basic T-shirts, jeans, posh undies and tights are all sensible buys. "Well-tailored coats and slim-cut black trousers are always worth buying when the price is slashed," personal stylist Eliisa Makin adds.Avoid lunchtime"I'll just pop in at lunch and have a look," you think, whirring efficiently. But the shops are so full of other workers and the rails so picked over and chaotic that they resemble a child's dressing-up box. Cue cold sweats and a retreat to the new-season, full-price – and crucially, empty – section of the shop. "Get up early," Amanda Slader says, "get in, get out, get home. Or go for a vodka and tonic."Accessorise"If you crave bold, statement pieces, avoid high-fashion 'hero' items which will date quickly," Eliisa Makin warns. "Opt for eye-catching accessories that appeal to your individuality – creative designer shoes, bags and jewellery are far more versatile in the long run." So if there's a particularly wacky trend you're desperate to be part of, do it with a cheap bag, rather than a bank-breaking floor-length gown.Look aheadTo predict the future, you have to understand the past, as they say. Fashion's not so dissimilar – before you hit the sales, think through the autumn trends and have a rifle through the mags to discover the key looks for spring. Set aside anything too obviously seasonal, such as sheepskin or shearling, and focus on more abstract styles which can work all year round. "The trend for minimalist pieces with modern quirks is set to continue throughout the year," Eliisa Makin says, "as is a neutral palette mixed with pastels and strong pops of colour."Make sure it fitsReturns policies differ hugely, so make sure you know what you're buying into; many shops will not refund sale items, so it's worth trying things on before you pay for them. And regardless of new year's resolutions, don't just buy something because you like it and you'd like to fit into it. "Never buy anything in the wrong size," Eliisa Makin says. "The intention to diet into it or have it adjusted usually remains just that."John Lewis sales-shopping tutorials run from 27 December to 16 January; for more information, call020 3073 0564Bag a bargainBrowns: starts 24 December, up to 50 per cent off;Coggles: starts 24 December, 25 per cent off;Feathers: starts 18 December, 30 to 50 per cent off, all shoes 40 per cent off;Harvey Nichols: starts 26 December, up to 50 per cent off;Liberty: starts 26 December, up to 50 per cent off;Matches: starts 20 December, 50 per cent off, going up to 70 per cent off;Mulberry: starts 25 December (web preview 24 December), 30 to 50 per cent off;My-wardrobe.com: starts 20 December, 30 to 40 per cent off;Paul Smith: starts 27 December, 30 per cent off;Start Boutique: starts 26 December, 30 per cent off;Vivienne Westwood: starts 27 December, 30 per cent off;Whistles, starts 23 December, 40 per cent off.What the experts are waiting for...Kay Barron, fashion news editor, GraziaI've had my eye on Alexander Wang's felt boots, since his show in February. They're too high and too expensive to justify on my budget, but if anyone knocks them down 80 per cent...Alex Fury, fashion director, SHOWstudio.comCome January, I'll be snapping up one of the foam-backed sweaters from Maison Martin Margiela; a Proenza Schouler baseball jacket-cum-bolero; and any acceptably man-size bag from Céline.Harriet Quick, fashion features editor, VogueI will be looking at buying a wonderful coat, as there were so many great ones in the collections this year – particularly at Jil Sander, Chloé and Gucci. I also always check out the Marc Jacobs sale on Mount Street, where sales go to 70 per cent and there's always something to love.Rebecca Osei-Baidoo, womenswear buyer, BrownsI'm waiting for a Christopher Kane embroidered T-shirt. It's a good sales bargain because it's the instantly recognisable flower print from the show and a good way to go from cool daywear into evening.Brix Smith-Start, owner, Start boutiqueI always look for classic Yves Saint Laurent shoes in black suede – if I can find those on sale. My advice when sales-shopping is to look for really good-quality things that will last and last. It's a real bargain if you can find things that you can rework, break apart and re-accessorise many times over.The 34th America’s Cup, in what will be the 162 years since, will be raced in 72-foot wing-powered catamaran multihulls and the leader of a China Team being given backing by the Chinese Government, Mr Wang Chao Yong, said in Beijing: “We have been working with some of the best worldwide designers for hulls and wings for a few months in partnership with top Chinese universities.“This is an opportunity to showcase Chinese talents in the leading edge, hi-tech areas of both hydrodynamics and aeronautics. Our boat will then by built in China.”Most of the sailors will be Chinese, said Mr. Wang, but, as in its first America’s Cup foray 2007, there will be a strong French influence. The team’s chief executive officer is Thierry Barot and he is bringing in top sailors from all over the world as coaches.With the deadline for entries set for 31 March this boosts the challenger list to nine, some announced, some still to be made formal. With more announcements over the next two days, any extension of the entry deadline may not be necessary or welcome, Whether all will make it to the start line of the challenger elimination series in July 2013 remains to be seenBritain’s Team Origin, headed by Sir Keith Mills, pulled out last year, but a serious discussion about a replacement has been underway. Sweden will be represented by Törbjorn Törnqvist’s Team Artemis and Emirates Team New Zealand, headed by Grant Dalton has said both that it intends to take part and that it still has some finance to put in place.Italy’s Mascalzone Latino represents the Challenger of Record, but its head, Vincenzo Onorato, recently in an angry public dispute with the local Audi car company’s funding for another event, has said he still has to raise his America’s Cup finance.Two of the three possible French challengers had talks with the Minister for Sport in Paris on Friday to discuss both amalgamation and French government support. But Stéphane Kandler’s All4One continues to work separately with Olivier de Kersauson. There has been little heard recently from Australia and Canada. There is also an Argo Challenge from a group of disabled sailors.The America’s Cup Event Authority is also due to announce this week, two months late, the venues of the 2011-2012 World Series regattas, to be staged in identically designed and built 45-foot wing powered catamarans.The first is due to be staged mid-July and the first three of the eight are expected to be in Europe.In Los Angeles, Britain’s Ian Williams dedicated his win at the Congressional Cup match racing grand prix to his mother, who died mid-event.Leukemia claimed mother Karen in midweek, but he still went on to drive his team to 17 wins, including a 2-0 sweep against defending champion Francesco Bruni of Italy for the championship. "It was a time to keep focused, part of the job," Williams said. "She was a keen sailor. It's what she would have wanted me to do."Williams’ next appointment for his Team GAC/Pindar is his second tilt at the Extreme Sailing Series in Qingdao, China, mid-April. He then rejoins the World Match Race Tour, which he has won twice, in Marseille in May.  But a rare trip to the UK last week saw the New York-based champion of elegantly modern, sporty tailoring opening a pop-up boutique in Selfridges, and breaking his usual silence to speak to press."I'm not such a public person," he says from the safety of the store’s serene personal shopping lounge. "I'm shy. I’m more about being in the atelier, and dress-making. For me, that appeals – that’s my most happy."So much is obvious from his label 3.1 Phillip Lim (he established it at the age of 31), in collections that focus on subtly updating classic and wearable pieces with cool but complex alterations to shape and silhouette. “Don’t get me wrong,” he continues, “I’m so appreciative. But creative people are introverted and the language they speak is not necessarily universal. When people ask about inspirations, and you’re like ‘oh, it was a flower or a mountain or a pony’, some people just think you’re insane. I’m worried to come across that way.”But Lim’s clothes are about as far from the fashionably flamboyant as it’s possible to be. They are minimal without being severe, and feminine without the froth. 3.1 is the sort of label that you find in most well-stocked boutiques and websites; it’s the stuff that sells without making a song and dance; that flatters without being fussy.“I’m about me,” he explains. “I don’t know quite what that is. The clothes are definitely a result of my personality. It’s an eccentric soul but at the same time it’s subtle and shy. It’s always about pushing this youthful elegance, which is a contradiction in itself, and I guess that’s why it’s difficult to explain. Because everything is a contradiction.”This is evident in strictly cut shirting made fluid with draped and asymmetrical planes of fabric at the shoulder, for instance, and sophisticated silk cut into jogging bottoms with an elasticated waist. In 2008, Lim was one of a handful of designers brave enough to resurrect the drop-crotch dhoti trouser (a shape which later became ubiquitous), and he made the once subversive style feel newly uptown, even soigneé.“I don’t consider it in terms of business, just in terms of a certain lifestyle,” he continues. “I’m youthful – when I wear a jacket, I rarely wear a shirt. I love that idea of being polished but finishing it off with something irreverent, or irrelevant. Something that doesn’t make sense.”When he first emerged, Lim’s style was at odds with the pre-crunch, hyped-up bling and excess on many of the international catwalks. But he was praised for his “wearability” – a key attribute in a commercially-led fashion city like New York. The aim was to provide tastefully directional clothing to young creatives who could not afford many of the high-end names they aspired to. His line provided pieces at entry-level prices – £200 for trousers and tops, £400 for a coat – and while these have shifted slightly as his profile has risen, Lim’s clothing remains some of the more affordable in the designer bracket.“When we first started, it was just where I was personally. I didn’t have much means, but I had a lot of desire. And that was the philosophy, beautiful clothing made to the best of our means, that was very accessible for myself, my partners, my colleagues, my friends, who were all in the same place. It was this idea of young professionals in the process of going somewhere.”But that isn’t to say the collection is simply for thirtysomethings: Lim’s success lies in the fact that he makes pieces that suit a broad range of customers and fulfil needs according to lifestyle rather than age. He simply doesn’t create pieces that could be “inappropriate”. And while Lim might be characterised as a “young designer”, he certainly doesn’t fit easily into that stereotype; his metier and methods are tinged with a nostalgia for the days when designers worked day and night in their salons, perfecting a single piece for a loyal customer.“I’m such a technophobe,” he laughs. “I have a joke that if I were to get fired, I would never get hired. I see a lot of the young students who have beautiful portfolios, and I’m like, ‘oh god, they’re good’. And then I think, ‘oh god, I have nothing’. If I want to photoshop something, it’s cut and paste – literally. Sometimes I think I should be in a different era. I’m blessed that we have an atelier in-house. It’s a dying craft. And if you don’t learn properly, shame on you.”Lim’s skills, not to mention his passion, run deep: his exasperated mother, a seamstress, spent his childhood remaking clothes according to her five-year-old’s instructions. Hems were taken in, jackets shortened, shoulder seams adjusted. “I grew up in suburbia,” he smiles. “I didn’t grow up around a fashionable mother. Like ‘oh I used to see her descending the stairs in her gown…’ It was nothing like that.”But clothing – not “fashion”, he insists – was an endless source of fascination; being a teenager in suburban California took Lim through an MTV generation dressing-up box of rockabilly, mod, nu-wave and metal; his obsession with dressing continues today, as he admits bashfully that he sometimes still changes three times a day.“My parents thought it was a hobby,” he says. “And then when it was time to go to school, I had to grow up and be a doctor or a lawyer or a businessperson. It was that Chinese-American first generation thing. I didn’t think you could do something with clothes, because to me clothes were joy, they were pleasure. So I chose business.”After almost three years of studying, Lim dropped out and re-enrolled in the department next door: home economics, where he learnt to sew and cut patterns. After an internship, he became an assistant at a design house, and co-founded his first company, Development, a few years later. “I said I couldn’t do it, I was an assistant,” he remembers, his modesty characteristic of a breed of fashion designers gone by. “I just never had an ambition or a goal. And people never believe me, but it’s true.”By 2006, Lim’s current label had been founded, he had relocated to New York and been named “Rising Star” by Fashion Group International. Later that year, he was shortlisted for the Council of Fashion Designers of America’s coveted Fashion Fun, a bursary run in tandem with Vogue.Lim missed out to designer Doo-Ri Chung, whose label has not enjoyed half the success that his has, but it prompted the first comparisons of his work to that of other Asian-American designers working in New York. There is a whole clutch of them – the avant garde Alexander Wang, Michelle Obama’s favourite Jason Wu, and streetwise Derek Lam – whose designs have come of age together, even though the creators themselves have very little in common.“It’s lazy, because we’ve taken such different paths. If anything’s related, it’s that the culture definitely has this appreciation of aesthetics. It has to do with harmony of beautiful things. But it’s also the times, because if you go into design studios, there’s a lot of diversity.”But Lim has been taken to heart in China, which is no bad thing given the clout of that developing market. Eighteen months ago he staged a show in Beijing for fashion fans whose tastes have developed beyond the logo-heavy culture so prominent in the East. “They said they were very proud – it was very heartfelt and touching,” he says.And the line of accessories that Lim is launching at Selfridges this month reflects the international tastes of his followers in the “31-hour bag”. “It’s for a global citizen,” he explains, of the leather tote inspired by the brown paper bags that American kids take sandwiches to school in. “We were working in the studio with vendors from different time zones, and one day I realised a day takes more than 24 hours – it’s 31 hours! Everything fits into that bag, and it allows for those extra hours.”It is this practicality and attention to detail which is at the heart of 3.1 Phillip Lim – just as it provides the energy which spurs on the man behind the label.According to a release, the new perfume will contain molecules that stimulate the hypothalamus, the sexual center of the brain, making it a "beautiful but deadly weapon of seduction" that will "ignite passions like never before."In fragrance speak, this will translate to an opening of mandarin and star anise notes, a heart composed of jasmine, gardenia, and (known aphrodisiac) licorice, and base notes of amber and vanilla - all packaged in a heart-shaped bottle complete with a cupid's dart.For even more appetite, Loverdose will be represented by sex bomb , the current face of Alexander Wang. More than 60 items from the Chinese-American designer Alexander Wang are now marked up to 60 percent off retail prices. For example, Wang's cutout satin jersey mini dress is selling on the site for 283 EUR, instead of 709 EUR, and his Millie leather satchel is currently up for grabs for 396 EUR, instead of 793 EUR.Though the online flash sale opened less than 24 hours ago, several items have already been sold out. Wang's sporty Rocco bags- spotted on various trendsetting celebrities like Mary-Kate Olsen and Rihanna-are no longer available, for instance. Both the Rocco mini duffel leather bag and the Rocco mini studded leather bag were marked down 50 percent off retail prices.Wang, who won the prestigious CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund award in 2008, is known for designing pieces that scream 'model off-duty' for their cool downtown vibe. Pieces like a silk-chiffon paneled sweatshirt, for example, channel his signature design ethos of casual luxury.The Outnet.com sells stock from previous collections at a discount. It carries 200 designer brands including Christian Lacroix, Bottega Veneta, Marni and Yves Saint Laurent. The online outlet was launched in spring 2009 by Natalie Massenet as the sister site to the full-priced, luxury e-tailer Net-a-porter.com. (Massenet founded Net-a-porter.com in 2000 and is launching the first global menswear retail site, MrPorter, in January 2011.)Luxury e-tailers- including the American sites Gilt Groupe, HauteLook and Rue La La and the French site Vente-privee.com- have been flourishing ever since the recession. The Economist reports that Rue La La brought in revenues of $130 million (95 million EUR) in 2009 and that Gilt is expecting to rake in $400 million (294 million EUR) this year. But bargain prices aren't the only reason for the retailers' success. 'Their sites are open only to those who have received an e-mail inviting them to join from another member. This lends them an air of exclusivity and creates the sort of buzz marketers crave,' Adam Bernhard, the boss of HauteLook, told the Economist.Shop the Alexander Wang sale on The Outnet:Released April 18 and available in shops as well as online, the iconic boot maker's first-ever collection - inspired, as the signature boots, by British workwear - is characteristic of 1990s shapes and patterns: for women, there are masculine shirts and checked shirtdresses, while men can choose from striped t-shirts and button-downs.Prices range from $48 to just over $100, with the range going on sale in Dr. Martens outlets across the UK, the US, and Asia.Thanks to the latest collections of the likes of Alexander Wang and Marc Jacobs that were all about maxi dresses, check patterns, turtlenecks, and other wardrobe staples from the era, similar ranges are likely to flood the market come fall.1. Leather jacket, Daniel Silver for Acne, £1,200, Acne2. DL & Co 'Cassis' rare botanic candle, £55, Browns3. Bespoke stand, from £80, Yunus & Eliza; Alexander Wang dalmation print bag, £270, Browns; Illesteva sunglasses, £180, Browns4. Frog Prince decoration, £2.50, National Gallery shop5. Christian Lacroix 'Sleeping Beauty', £10.39, Waterstones6. Chloe leather wallet, £310, Net-a-Porter7. Miu Miu glitter boots, £555, Net-a-Porter8. Collar, Michele Corty for American Retro, £250 for 4, American Retro9. Weston scarf, £160, Net-a-Porter10. 'Guy Bourdin' book, £7.95, Phaidon11. Polaroid camera, £85, Gift-Library12. Pommery Pop mini champagne, £15, John Lewis13. Christopher Kane top, £1,160, The Corner14. Lips pins, £146 each, Sonia Rykiel15. 'A Very She & Him Christmas', £7.99, Amazon16. Esquivel 'Saddle' leather shoes, £535, Browns17. 'It's Hot' cup and saucer, £39, This is a Limited Edition18. iPad covers, Louise Gray for the V&A, £95, V&A shopClick the links below to view the gift guidesAlexander Wang: "Discounts up to 80% off. Location: 93 Mercer (between Spring and Broome, NY) Thursday, Aug 5 2pm-7pm Friday, Aug 6 10am-7pm Saturday, Aug 7 10am-7pm Sunday, Aug 8 10am-3pm Closest Subway: Spring (6), Prince (R, W) Credit cards accepted on purchases of $200 and above."PPQ: "PPQ summer sale now a whopping 75% off!!!"Rocawear: "Sleep in Roc style! Take 40% off select women's sleepwear sets!"Kiki de Montparnasse: "Quelle Chaleur! Sophisticated new styles have been added to our Summer Sale. Save up to 75%. Shop Now!"But, just like the clothing on the catwalks, Forties beauty was given a futuristic spin, with skin left natural, even glossy in some cases, and complexions given a certain freshness: make-up artists referenced Land Girls rather than powdered grandees, with plenty of natural radiance and rosy cheeks shining through.Henry Holland's girlish models in their crochet knits embodied the modern update of the look, with hair swept back into loose, rough-dried ponytails.Skin needs nothing more than a layer of Topshop's powder foundation, for an even and matte finish, and an oh-so-light dusting of blush in rose pink – apply this slightly below the cheekbone to avoid too cartoonish a look. Keep well-plucked brows ruthlessly tamed with a slick of MAC's brow gel and try Lancôme's new Doll Eyes mascara for a clean and subtle flutter.The red lip is slightly more mature this season, so eschew bright pillarbox shades for a richer oxblood."Smudge your foundation or concealer around the lipline to ensure you have a clean line when applying your lipstick," advises Lori Taylor, make-up artist at Smashbox Cosmetics.Shade 1 from Kate Moss's new range for Rimmel is brilliantly vivid and gives a matte finish without drying your lips.The Red Lip"Start by powdering the lip and make sure your liner is as close to your lip shade as possible. Then fill the lip with one coat of your red lipstick and blot with tissue. Apply a second coat and, with a flat line brush, use concealer to sharpen edges around the lip."Lori Taylor, Smashbox CosmeticsLand Girl Hair"To get the 'Land Girl' look, use tongs or straighteners on dry hair. Hair-spray sections and roll into 'barrel curls' – these are pinned away from your head, similar to the effect rollers give. Once all of the hair is up into 'barrels', spray once more all over with hairspray. Leave them to cool and set and then take out and brush through lightly."Nick Irwin, Creative Director at TIGIMetallicsAfter a bright and breezy summer season inspired by the Seventies, autumn beauty moves into the darker end of the decade, with heavy metal showing up on eyelids, fingernails, cheekbones, lips and even hair. Bronze, pewter and gold conjure a glam rock aesthetic and this season, the emphasis is more on rock than it is on glamour.Models at Roberto Cavalli had layers of different shimmering metallic shadow worked right up to their brows, while straggly wet-look hair was brushed through with flecks of gold. At Chanel, meanwhile, there was an apocalyptic feel, with silver shades worked onto nude skin for an almost robotic feel, as well as the classic smoky eye reinvented with oodles of reflective sparkle. The label has also released yet another batch of soon-to-be cult nail varnishes in holographic metal shades.For smoky metallic eyes, choose shadow with thick pigment and a creamy texture for extra coverage; the key here is that it looks daubed on. "I would advise starting from a light shade and intensifying little by little to suit how deep and how smoky you would like it," says beauty guru Laura Mercier. "The more you line into the centre of the eye, the more dramatic the look will become."Try refreshing cheeks with a sweep of pale gold eyeshadow to add shimmer. Shu Uemura's glittering gold lipstick can be applied liberally for a more extreme look or dotted on your cupid's bow for subtle emphasis, while Nuxe's gold hair oil will add a little shimmer up top as well. The important thing is to keep skin clear and fresh-looking, so don't trowl on the foundation – the look is more Robocop than roller-disco.The Metallic Eye"For the perfect metallic eye, begin with a sheer base on the lid and up on the brow arch to create a highlight. Then run a loose line very close to the base of your lashes, the full length of the eye, or the outer third only. Smudge away until there are no hard lines, only density of pigment and a horizon effect going from dark to light. For further drama, add my Black Ebony Eye Liner in between the lashes on the top lid."Laura Mercier, make-up artistMinimal GrungeThere's a downbeat vibe to the autumn collections, which came through in clothing as sombre colours with a hint of gothic grunge. In make-up, meanwhile, it translates as simply doing very little – the catwalks full of nude-faced models. This is by turns thrillingly liberating for the woman looking to ditch the suitcase full of products she has to drag round with her all day, but also terrifying for the rest of us, who are not convinced we look human without an impermeable layer of slap.Help comes in the form of two hero products: Smashbox's anti-shine primer, a light, skin-smoothing gel which absorbs oil from your T-zone; and Bobbi Brown's Corrector, a solid concealer which, when applied with a brush, fades spots instantly. If your skin needs a further helping hand, however, look no further than Topshop's Glow highlighter, which gives cheekbones both dewiness and brightness, while hiding redness and blemishes.The minimal make-up looks on the catwalk were underscored by a nonchalant grunginess, rather than a fresh-faced naivety, so your flawless base needs to be framed by heavy features that ooze a bit of attitude.The return of the strong brow is a chance to create a bit of drama, whether you're happy pencilling in Brooke Shields-esque brows or would rather just take them a shade darker. There were thick brows aplenty at Acne and Alexander Wang, where barely-there make-up perfectly matched the urban sleekness of both labels' aesthetics.If you're nervous about going to such lengths, simply extending the line of your brow a little towards your temple will highlight your cheekbones and add some definition to your face."Your brow's own natural line should be your guide," says Bobbi Brown make-up artist Hannah Martin. "Don't try to 'create' a line – believe it or not, we're all born with the brow shape that best suits our face."The final touch should be a sweep of subtly iridescent eyeshadow in a natural colour (pink or gold shades are most flattering, but some of the more directional takes on the catwalk used yellow or even faint mushroom hues), a smear of natural lipbalm and very, very lo-fi hair. A loose ponytail at the nape or a band pushed back into mussed hair works best. At Balmain, hair was so studiedly minimal that hairbands were practically falling out of the half-finished ponytails.The Strong Brow"Use a brow pencil to draw in the line, in a shade that matches the brow colour. Fill with a light feathery stroke, then go over the line with a powdered eye shadow that matches the hair colour closely. Using a stiff, flat, angled brow brush, stroke the shadow lightly from the inner corner of the brow along the entire length to fill it. To finish, stroke colour along the upper edge of the brow to accentuate and give 'lift' to the eye area."Hannah Martin, Bobbi BrownThe Fashion Nail"Special effect polishes and metallics are big in nails this season and I also love a matte topcoat combined with a glossy finish. The contrast of textures looks so modern and stylish. The inspiration for my new autumn collection came from some of the fabrics I've seen in the designer collections – the Dolce & Gabbana star print, for example, and the Missoni fabric inspired my answer to the Aztec Navarro trend in nail art."Sophy Robson, nail artistYouTube abounds with new tutorials on retro hairstyles, quiffs of all sorts, and how to achieve the perfect vintage curl, thanks to looks seen at designers' Fall/Winter shows, including that of Antonio Marras.The Swinging Sixties are set for a fall comeback, with Rochas having debuted a Bardot-esque bed head, Gaultier styling his models in beehives, and Lagerfeld pairing similar looks with glittering headbands. The decade's high hair also remains popular, as seen at Ruffian among many others.Middle parts as seen in the 1970s will go well with fall's flared jeans, but make sure to keep your tresses slick and straight for a more modern look, as did the stylists of Blumarine's show.Labels including Lanvin demonstrated that bangs will still be big this fall, while curls are best sported in the shape of a short, bouncy bob (see Dior) - but the one hairstyle that will show everyone you did your fashion homework is the long loose side braid à la Alexander Wang or Emilio Pucci.50th SaloniApril 12-17Milan, ItalyFashion brands including Hermès, Frankie Morello, and Banana Republic, will launch home collections at the world's biggest interior design fair. The event is open to the general public on April 17. Burberry goes BeijingApril 13Beijing, China & InternationalThe brand is readying a fashion-meets-technology extravaganza that will be broadcast live all around the world: following its Beijing store opening at the Sparkle Roll Plaza, Burberry will stage a show at the Beijing Television Center that will feature Brit rockers Keane, top models, and digital imagery including "life-like" holograms.Opening Ceremony launches at Lane CrawfordApril 14Hong KongThe famous New York-based concept store sets up shop at the Hong Kong shopping destination with US-themed concepts that involve designs by Alexander Wang, Band of Outsiders, Pamela Love, Suno, Rodarte, and Chloé Sevigny. The pop-up will stay open for a month before continuing on to Beijing. / H&M Fashion Against Aids collection releaseApril 26InternationalThe Swedish retailer's yearly Fashion Against Age range is unisex this year and includes spring basics as well as trendy accessories. All designs will be available in H&M's Divided department and online, with 25 percent of sales donated to Designers Against Aids and various other international HIV/AIDS prevention projects.CFDA AwardsJune 6New York, USAUS designer Alexander Wang is nominated in three different categories at the annual Council of Fashion Designers of America awards, while Marc Jacobs and Lady Gaga are to be bestowed the lifetime achievement and fashion icon awards respectively. Pitti Uomo & Pitti WJune 14-17Florence, ItalyThe next edition of the cutting-edge fashion fair will focus on the new California creative scene with special projects by guest designers Scott Sternberg from Band of Outsiders and Kate and Laura Mulleavy from Rodarte, two brands that have captured the attention of the international fashion community over the last few seasons. Also, actress and fashion icon Sarah Jessica Parker will host the "Firenze4ever...It's magic" event together with designer shopping site Luisaviaroma.com that will welcome 40 bloggers from all over the world.The Fashion World of Jean Paul GaultierJune 17 - October 2Montreal, CanadaThe first ever retrospective dedicated to the designs of world-renowned French couturier Jean Paul Gaultier will be unveiled at The Montreal Museum of Fine Arts, after which the exhibit will travel to the US. The Fashion World of Jean-Paul Gaultier: From the Sidewalk to the Catwalk will display more than one hundred ensembles, including couture creations, as well as original sketches and photographs by the designer, spanning his 35 years in the fashion industry.Men's ready-to-wearJune 18-26Milan, Italy / Paris, FranceBoth fashion capitals will bring the best in menswear back to the runways, with the likes of Diesel, Marc Jacobs, and Burberry showing in Milan, before the fashion community continues on to Paris that will host presentations by Rick Owens, Dries van Noten, Yves Saint Laurent, and many more. /  Semana Internacional de la Moda (SIMM)September 1-3Madrid, SpainThe country's most important fashion week showcases the collections of local as well as international designers. The inclusive event attracts buyers from all over the world looking for everything from vanguard fashion to everyday wear, sportswear, underwear, plus-size and teen fashion.Istanbul Fashion WeekSeptember 7-10Istanbul, TurkeyOne of the youngest fashion weeks of the world, the event has already gained a high-profile following thanks to designers such as Dice Kayek and Hakaan. Fashion's Night OutSeptember 8InternationalThe global shopping event, initiated by Vogue magazine, will take place in more than 100 cities around the world, with participating countries including the US, Australia, China, the UK, France, Germany, Greece, India, Italy, Portugal, Russia, Spain, South Korea, Taiwan, and Turkey. For the first time, online retailers will also stage special shopping events to involve those who aren't close to any of the participating locations.New York Fashion WeekSeptember 8-15New York, NY, USAThe biggest American designers, such as Tommy Hilfiger or Ralph Lauren, will show alongside fresh talents, including Prabal Gurung and Alexander Wang, when the Big Apple kicks off fall's fashion month.Daphne Guinness exhibitionSeptember 16 - January 7New York, NY, USAFilling the void left by the Met's Alexander McQueen exhibit, this new display at The Museum at FIT (Fashion Institute of Technology) is dedicated to socialite and supporter of high fashion Daphne Guinness, featuring around 100 garments and accessories from her collection by the likes of Azzedine Alaïa, Karl Lagerfeld for Chanel, John Galliano for Christian Dior, and of course her personal favorite McQueen.London Fashion WeekSeptember 16-20London, UKJust one day after the end of the shows in New York, the London Fashion Week begins. House of Holland, Julien Macdonald, Matthew Williamson, Acne, Peter Pilotto, Erdem and Burberry Prorsum are some of the brands showing their Spring/Summer collections in London, considered the most avant-garde of the four big fashion weeks.Milan Fashion WeekSeptember 21-27Milan, ItalyAfter London and before Paris, the fashion crowd moves to Milan to look at the women's Spring/Summer 2011 collections. Expect great shows from the likes of Dolce & Gabbana, Giorgio Armani, Fendi, Gucci and Prada.Paris Fashion WeekSeptember 27 - October 5Paris, FranceThe season of Spring/Summer ready-to-wear shows ends in Paris with legendary houses like Chanel, Jean Paul Gaultier, Balenciaga, Yves Saint Laurent, Sonia Rykiel, Maison Martin Margiela, Louis Vuitton and Christian Dior.Lady Gaga for GiltMay 20-21OnlineTo celebrate the launch of Lady Gaga's new album, Born This Way, flash sale site Gilt has created a two-day boutique curated by the star's stylist Nicola Formichetti. Sales include a one-of-a-kind Mugler dress worn by Gaga and a ticket to the Mugler fashion show in Paris, as well as the experience of seeing the Mother Monster perform, complete with VIP access.19th Life BallMay 21Vienna, AustriaThe annual AIDS charity event will feature an impressive guest list with, for instance, singer Janet Jackson representing the Foundation for AIDS Research. The opening ceremony and the fashion show on the Vienna City Hall Square are free and accessible to all with no charge, however the Ball itself is reserved to 3,780 guests. CFDA AwardsJune 6New York, USAUS designer Alexander Wang is nominated in three different categories at the annual Council of Fashion Designers of America awards, while Marc Jacobs and Lady Gaga are to be bestowed the lifetime achievement and fashion icon awards respectively. The Fashion World of Jean Paul GaultierJune 17 - October 2Montreal, CanadaThe first ever retrospective dedicated to the designs of world-renowned French couturier Jean Paul Gaultier will be unveiled at The Montreal Museum of Fine Arts, after which the exhibit will travel to the US. The Fashion World of Jean-Paul Gaultier: From the Sidewalk to the Catwalk will display more than one hundred ensembles, including couture creations, as well as original sketches and photographs by the designer, spanning his 35 years in the fashion industry.The Moss Portfolio and Other StoriesMay 12 - June 30New York, USAIn addition to better-known photos by Annie Leibovitz or Terry Richardson, Danziger Projects will be showcasing unseen photographs of Moss taken in 1988 (the year before her career was launched in The FACE) by Gene Lemuel and rarely exhibited pictures by Mary McCartney and Herb Ritts. Kate Moss par les plus grands photographesMay 13 - September 14Paris, FranceRoughly translating to "Kate Moss through the lens of major photographers," the exhibit at the Galerie de l'Instant traces Moss's career in pictures: starting with the legendary shots by Corinne Day, the display moves on throughout the 1990s during which the likes of Paolo Roversi, Peter Lindbergh and Ellen Von Unwerth portrayed her as the emblematic woman of the decade.19th Life BallMay 21Vienna, AustriaThe annual AIDS charity event will feature an impressive guest list with, for instance, singer Janet Jackson representing the Foundation for AIDS Research. The opening ceremony and the fashion show on the Vienna City Hall Square are free and accessible to all with no charge, however the Ball itself is reserved to 3,780 guests. CFDA AwardsJune 6New York, USAUS designer Alexander Wang is nominated in three different categories at the annual Council of Fashion Designers of America awards, while Marc Jacobs and Lady Gaga are to be bestowed the lifetime achievement and fashion icon awards respectively. The Fashion World of Jean Paul GaultierJune 17 - October 2Montreal, CanadaThe first ever retrospective dedicated to the designs of world-renowned French couturier Jean Paul Gaultier will be unveiled at The Montreal Museum of Fine Arts, after which the exhibit will travel to the US. The Fashion World of Jean-Paul Gaultier: From the Sidewalk to the Catwalk will display more than one hundred ensembles, including couture creations, as well as original sketches and photographs by the designer, spanning his 35 years in the fashion industry.Lakme Fashion WeekAugust 16-21Mumbai, IndiaWith the help of Mercedes Benz, which also sponsors fashion weeks in New York, Sydney, and Berlin, for example, Lakme fashion week has developed into India's most prestigious fashion event.Sydney Fashion FestivalAugust 23-27Sydney, AustraliaThe Sydney Fashion Festival features ticketed fashion events for the public, showcasing Australia's leading designer brands and retailers as their Spring/Summer collections arrive in stores throughout the city. The main fashion shows are held in the Sydney Town Hall and are accompanied by a satellite schedule of fashion and lifestyle events that span the city. The Rosemount Australian Fashion Week is Australia's most globally-followed fashion event but, like the L'Oreal Melbourne Fashion Festival, the Mercedes-Benz Sydney Festival is popular with the locals as it is open to the public. Semana Internacional de la Moda (SIMM)September 1-3Madrid, SpainThe country's most important fashion week showcases the collections of local as well as international designers. The inclusive event attracts buyers from all over the world looking for everything from vanguard fashion to everyday wear, sportswear, underwear, plus-size and teen fashion.Istanbul Fashion WeekSeptember 7-10Istanbul, TurkeyOne of the youngest fashion weeks of the world, the event has already gained a high-profile following thanks to designers such as Dice Kayek or Hakaan. New York Fashion WeekSeptember 8-15New York, NY, USAThe biggest American designers, such as Tommy Hilfiger or Ralph Lauren, will show alongside fresh talents, including Prabal Gurung and Alexander Wang, when the Big Apple kicks off fall's fashion month.Daphne Guinness exhibitionSeptember 16 - January 7New York, NY, USAFilling the void left by the Met's Alexander McQueen exhibit, this new display at The Museum at FIT (Fashion Institute of Technology) is dedicated to socialite and supporter of high fashion Daphne Guinness, featuring around 100 garments and accessories from her collection by the likes of Azzedine Alaïa, Karl Lagerfeld for Chanel, John Galliano for Christian Dior, and of course her personal favorite McQueen.London Fashion WeekSeptember 16-20London, UKJust one day after the end of the shows in New York, the London Fashion Week begins. House of Holland, Julian Macdonald, Matthew Williamson, Acne, Peter Pilotto, Erdem and Burberry Prorsum are some of the brands showing their Spring/Summer collections in London, considered the most avant-garde of the four big fashion weeks.Milan Fashion WeekSeptember 21-27Milan, ItalyAfter London and before Paris, the fashion crowd moves to Milan to look at the women's Spring/Summer 2011 collections. Expect great shows from the likes of Dolce & Gabbana, Giorgio Armani, Fendi, Gucci and Prada.Paris Fashion WeekSeptember 27 - October 5Paris, FranceThe season of Spring/Summer ready-to-wear shows ends in Paris with legendary houses like Chanel, Jean Paul Gaultier, Balenciaga, Yves Saint Laurent, Sonia Rykiel, Maison Martin Margiela, Louis Vuitton and Christian Dior.20th Barcelona Bridal WeekMay 10-15Barcelona, SpainThe bridal week, which sees shows and presentations from domestic and international designers including Pronovias (Spain) and Cymbeline (France), shares a spot with New York Bridal Week as the leading event in the field.19th Life BallMay 21Vienna, AustriaThe annual AIDS charity event will feature an impressive guest list with, for instance, singer Janet Jackson representing the Foundation for AIDS Research. The opening ceremony and the fashion show on the Vienna City Hall Square are free and accessible to all with no charge, however the Ball itself is reserved to 3,780 guests. CFDA AwardsJune 6New York, USAUS designer Alexander Wang is nominated in three different categories at the annual Council of Fashion Designers of America awards, while Marc Jacobs and Lady Gaga are to be bestowed the lifetime achievement and fashion icon awards respectively. The Fashion World of Jean Paul GaultierJune 17 - October 2Montreal, CanadaThe first ever retrospective dedicated to the designs of world-renowned French couturier Jean Paul Gaultier will be unveiled at The Montreal Museum of Fine Arts, after which the exhibit will travel to the US. The Fashion World of Jean-Paul Gaultier: From the Sidewalk to the Catwalk will display more than one hundred ensembles, including couture creations, as well as original sketches and photographs by the designer, spanning his 35 years in the fashion industry.Rachel Zoe collection launchAugust 1OnlineMonths after releasing the lookbook, the celebrity stylist is making her first collection available internationally on e-tailer Shopbop.com. For the launch at 12pm EST, there will be behind-the-scenes footage from the making of Zoe's own fashion line as well as a question-and-answer session on the site.Scandinavian fashion weeksAugust 3-14Copenhagen, Denmark; Stockholm, Sweden; Oslo, NorwayWhile August is a calm month for fashion in general, the Scandinavian countries are using the gap in between seasons to build an alternative scene that attracts more and more visitors each year and that has local designers return from big international fashion cities to show in their home countries.Copenhagen: August 3-7, Stockholm: August 8-14 (Mercedes Benz Fashion Week: August 9-11), Oslo: August 8-14, Lakme Fashion WeekAugust 16-21Mumbai, IndiaWith the help of Mercedes Benz, which also sponsors fashion weeks in New York, Sydney, and Berlin, for example, Lakme fashion week has developed into India's most prestigious fashion event.Sydney Fashion FestivalAugust 23-27Sydney, AustraliaThe Sydney Fashion Festival features ticketed fashion events for the public, showcasing Australia's leading designer brands and retailers as their Spring/Summer collections arrive in stores throughout the city. The main fashion shows are held in the Sydney Town Hall and are accompanied by a satellite schedule of fashion and lifestyle events that span the city. The Rosemount Australian Fashion Week is Australia's most globally-followed fashion event but, like the L'Oreal Melbourne Fashion Festival, the Mercedes-Benz Sydney Festival is popular with the locals as it is open to the public. Semana Internacional de la Moda (SIMM)September 1-3Madrid, SpainThe country's most important fashion week showcases the collections of local as well as international designers. The inclusive event attracts buyers from all over the world looking for everything from vanguard fashion to everyday wear, sportswear, underwear, plus-size and teen fashion.Istanbul Fashion WeekSeptember 7-10Istanbul, TurkeyOne of the youngest fashion weeks of the world, the event has already gained a high-profile following thanks to designers such as Dice Kayek or Hakaan. New York Fashion WeekSeptember 8-15New York, NY, USAThe biggest American designers, such as Tommy Hilfiger or Ralph Lauren, will show alongside fresh talents, including Prabal Gurung and Alexander Wang, when the Big Apple kicks off fall's fashion month.London Fashion WeekSeptember 16-20London, UKJust one day after the end of the shows in New York, the London Fashion Week begins. House of Holland, Julian Macdonald, Matthew Williamson, Acne, Peter Pilotto, Erdem and Burberry Prorsum are some of the brands showing their Spring/Summer collections in London, considered the most avant-garde of the four big fashion weeks.Milan Fashion WeekSeptember 21-27Milan, ItalyAfter London and before Paris, the fashion crowd moves to Milan to look at the women's Spring/Summer 2011 collections. Expect great shows from the likes of Dolce & Gabbana, Giorgio Armani, Fendi, Gucci and Prada.Paris Fashion WeekSeptember 27 - October 5Paris, FranceThe season of Spring/Summer ready-to-wear shows ends in Paris with legendary houses like Chanel, Jean Paul Gaultier, Balenciaga, Yves Saint Laurent, Sonia Rykiel, Maison Martin Margiela, Louis Vuitton and Christian Dior.New York Fashion WeekThrough September 15New York, NY, USAThe biggest American designers, such as Tommy Hilfiger or Ralph Lauren, will show alongside fresh talents, including Prabal Gurung and Alexander Wang, when the Big Apple kicks off fall's fashion month.Daphne Guinness exhibitionSeptember 16 - January 7New York, NY, USAFilling the void left by the Met's Alexander McQueen exhibit, this new display at The Museum at FIT (Fashion Institute of Technology) is dedicated to socialite and supporter of high fashion Daphne Guinness, featuring around 100 garments and accessories from her collection by the likes of Azzedine Alaïa, Karl Lagerfeld for Chanel, John Galliano for Christian Dior, and of course her personal favorite McQueen.London Fashion WeekSeptember 16-20London, UKJust one day after the end of the shows in New York, the London Fashion Week begins. House of Holland, Julien Macdonald, Matthew Williamson, Acne, Peter Pilotto, Erdem and Burberry Prorsum are some of the brands showing their Spring/Summer collections in London, considered the most avant-garde of the four big fashion weeks.Milan Fashion WeekSeptember 21-27Milan, ItalyAfter London and before Paris, the fashion crowd moves to Milan to look at the women's Spring/Summer 2011 collections. Expect great shows from the likes of Dolce & Gabbana, Giorgio Armani, Fendi, Gucci and Prada.Paris Fashion WeekSeptember 27 - October 5Paris, FranceThe season of Spring/Summer ready-to-wear shows ends in Paris with legendary houses like Chanel, Jean Paul Gaultier, Balenciaga, Yves Saint Laurent, Sonia Rykiel, Maison Martin Margiela, Louis Vuitton and Christian Dior.Scandinavian fashion weeksAugust 8-14Stockholm, Sweden; Oslo, NorwayWhile August is a calm month for fashion in general, the Scandinavian countries are using the gap in between seasons to build an alternative scene that attracts more and more visitors each year and that has local designers return from big international fashion cities to show in their home countries.Stockholm: August 8-14 (Mercedes Benz Fashion Week: August 9-11), Oslo: August 8-14, Lakme Fashion WeekAugust 16-21Mumbai, IndiaWith the help of Mercedes Benz, which also sponsors fashion weeks in New York, Sydney, and Berlin, for example, Lakme fashion week has developed into India's most prestigious fashion event.Sydney Fashion FestivalAugust 23-27Sydney, AustraliaThe Sydney Fashion Festival features ticketed fashion events for the public, showcasing Australia's leading designer brands and retailers as their Spring/Summer collections arrive in stores throughout the city. The main fashion shows are held in the Sydney Town Hall and are accompanied by a satellite schedule of fashion and lifestyle events that span the city. The Rosemount Australian Fashion Week is Australia's most globally-followed fashion event but, like the L'Oreal Melbourne Fashion Festival, the Mercedes-Benz Sydney Festival is popular with the locals as it is open to the public. Semana Internacional de la Moda (SIMM)September 1-3Madrid, SpainThe country's most important fashion week showcases the collections of local as well as international designers. The inclusive event attracts buyers from all over the world looking for everything from vanguard fashion to everyday wear, sportswear, underwear, plus-size and teen fashion.Istanbul Fashion WeekSeptember 7-10Istanbul, TurkeyOne of the youngest fashion weeks of the world, the event has already gained a high-profile following thanks to designers such as Dice Kayek or Hakaan. New York Fashion WeekSeptember 8-15New York, NY, USAThe biggest American designers, such as Tommy Hilfiger or Ralph Lauren, will show alongside fresh talents, including Prabal Gurung and Alexander Wang, when the Big Apple kicks off fall's fashion month.London Fashion WeekSeptember 16-20London, UKJust one day after the end of the shows in New York, the London Fashion Week begins. House of Holland, Julian Macdonald, Matthew Williamson, Acne, Peter Pilotto, Erdem and Burberry Prorsum are some of the brands showing their Spring/Summer collections in London, considered the most avant-garde of the four big fashion weeks.Milan Fashion WeekSeptember 21-27Milan, ItalyAfter London and before Paris, the fashion crowd moves to Milan to look at the women's Spring/Summer 2011 collections. Expect great shows from the likes of Dolce & Gabbana, Giorgio Armani, Fendi, Gucci and Prada.Paris Fashion WeekSeptember 27 - October 5Paris, FranceThe season of Spring/Summer ready-to-wear shows ends in Paris with legendary houses like Chanel, Jean Paul Gaultier, Balenciaga, Yves Saint Laurent, Sonia Rykiel, Maison Martin Margiela, Louis Vuitton and Christian Dior.Sydney Fashion FestivalAugust 23-27Sydney, AustraliaThe Sydney Fashion Festival features ticketed fashion events for the public, showcasing Australia's leading designer brands and retailers as their Spring/Summer collections arrive in stores throughout the city. The main fashion shows are held in the Sydney Town Hall and are accompanied by a satellite schedule of fashion and lifestyle events that span the city. The Rosemount Australian Fashion Week is Australia's most globally-followed fashion event but, like the L'Oreal Melbourne Fashion Festival, the Mercedes-Benz Sydney Festival is popular with the locals as it is open to the public. Semana Internacional de la Moda (SIMM)September 1-3Madrid, SpainThe country's most important fashion week showcases the collections of local as well as international designers. The inclusive event attracts buyers from all over the world looking for everything from vanguard fashion to everyday wear, sportswear, underwear, plus-size and teen fashion.Istanbul Fashion WeekSeptember 7-10Istanbul, TurkeyOne of the youngest fashion weeks of the world, the event has already gained a high-profile following thanks to designers such as Dice Kayek and Hakaan. Fashion's Night OutSeptember 8InternationalThe global shopping event, initiated by Vogue magazine, will take place in more than 100 cities around the world, with participating countries including the US, Australia, China, the UK, France, Germany, Greece, India, Italy, Portugal, Russia, Spain, South Korea, Taiwan, and Turkey. For the first time, online retailers will also stage special shopping events to involve those who aren't close to any of the participating locations.New York Fashion WeekSeptember 8-15New York, NY, USAThe biggest American designers, such as Tommy Hilfiger or Ralph Lauren, will show alongside fresh talents, including Prabal Gurung and Alexander Wang, when the Big Apple kicks off fall's fashion month.Daphne Guinness exhibitionSeptember 16 - January 7New York, NY, USAFilling the void left by the Met's Alexander McQueen exhibit, this new display at The Museum at FIT (Fashion Institute of Technology) is dedicated to socialite and supporter of high fashion Daphne Guinness, featuring around 100 garments and accessories from her collection by the likes of Azzedine Alaïa, Karl Lagerfeld for Chanel, John Galliano for Christian Dior, and of course her personal favorite McQueen.London Fashion WeekSeptember 16-20London, UKJust one day after the end of the shows in New York, the London Fashion Week begins. House of Holland, Julien Macdonald, Matthew Williamson, Acne, Peter Pilotto, Erdem and Burberry Prorsum are some of the brands showing their Spring/Summer collections in London, considered the most avant-garde of the four big fashion weeks.Milan Fashion WeekSeptember 21-27Milan, ItalyAfter London and before Paris, the fashion crowd moves to Milan to look at the women's Spring/Summer 2011 collections. Expect great shows from the likes of Dolce & Gabbana, Giorgio Armani, Fendi, Gucci and Prada.Paris Fashion WeekSeptember 27 - October 5Paris, FranceThe season of Spring/Summer ready-to-wear shows ends in Paris with legendary houses like Chanel, Jean Paul Gaultier, Balenciaga, Yves Saint Laurent, Sonia Rykiel, Maison Martin Margiela, Louis Vuitton and Christian Dior.The designers - Alexander Wang, Sophie Theallet and Billy Reid - were selected as past winners of the Council of Fashion Designers of America/Vogue Fashion Fund (CVFF), which gives away grants to new and emerging American fashion designers.Wang's T-shirt is a fun play on the coffee stain, with a milky coffee splotch splattered across the right side that tapers into the Starbucks logo, Siren.Theallet, who has worked for Jean Paul Gaultier, captured the brand's ubiquity with a stylized map of the world, while Reid, who hails from the South, used a worn, broken-in tee as his canvas and placed the Siren logo on the shoulder.The limited edition shirts are available at select Nordstrom stores across the US for $85 (€61) and will be sold at the online store .Meanwhile, last month, Krispy Kreme in the UK launched two donuts - strawberry and orange glaze - for London Fashion Week, and French luxury tea house Ladurée debuted its newest macaron gift box designed by British designer Matthew Williamson.He also lost his own label, only days before shows for both were staged. Everyone from Karl Lagerfeld to Natalie Portman (among the faces of Dior) was quick to condemn the designer, who, in September, was found guilty on both charges. Those who witnessed the extraordinary workings of his mind couldn't help but mourn his departure from a position that he lit up with his wild imaginings.2. Art attackThe gap between high and low culture continued to narrow as Yves Saint Laurent's Stefano Pilati dressed the cast of Harold Pinter's Betrayal for Ian Rickson's production at London's Comedy Theatre in June. Kristin Scott Thomas, Douglas Henshall and Ben Miles all wore his designs. In November, Louis Vuitton unveiled a trunk created in collaboration with Grayson Perry, with his bear Alan Measles – or at least a stunt double – in pride of place. LV is the title sponsor of Perry's ongoing British Museum show.3. Harsh wordsIn March Hermès CEO Patrick Thomas accused LVMH (Louis Vuitton Moët Hennessy) president Bernard Arnault of "rape", when it was revealed that the latter had acquired a 20 per cent stake of his label. In an uncharacteristically exasperated moment in the history of a venerable status name, Thomas said: "If you want to seduce a beautiful woman, you don't start by raping her from behind." That same month, Christophe Lemaire took over from Jean-Paul Gaultier as creative director of Hermès womenswear and showed his first collection there.4. Happy birthdayOn 8 April, Vivienne Westwood turned 70. Gucci celebrated its 90th birthday with the opening of a Gucci museum in its hometown of Florence in September. The Marc by Marc Jacobs collection was born a decade ago this year as was designer Peter Jensen's eponymous label – a book was published to commemorate the event in the autumn, and last month Jensen staged a retrospective fashion show at the Victoria & Albert Museum. Dazed & Confused is now 20, meanwhile. Another book (Making It Up As We Go Along, published by Rizzoli) and an exhibition of pioneering photographic work (at Somerset House, central London) marked this anniversary.5. There went the bridesWhile Alexander McQueen's Sarah Burton denied claims that she would be dressing Catherine Middleton for her marriage to Prince William, on 27 April she was spotted entering the Gore Hotel in Kensington where the Middletons spent the night before the wedding and the truth was out. The gown was received as a thing of great and suitably modest beauty the world over. No one could ever accuse Kim Kardashian of modesty. Kardashian commissioned no less than three wedding dresses for her marriage to Kris Humphreys on 20 August, all by Vera Wang. Wang has since designed affordable copies for lesser mortals and due to go on sale in February, some time after Ms Kardashian filed for divorce, then, which is romantic. Her marriage lasted just 72 days. Another Kate – Ms Moss – got married too, to long-time partner, Jamie Hince, on 2 July and wearing an ivory bias-cut slip made for her by John Galliano.6. The rumour millEven before Galliano had officially parted company with Dior, the rumour mill began turning regarding his successor. Until recently, Marc Jacobs, creative director of Louis Vuitton, was considered to be frontrunner, but it is now believed that Raf Simons is the main contender. Givenchy's Riccardo Tisci, Alexander McQueen's Sarah Burton and Balenciaga's Nicolas Ghesquière have also been cited as in the frame. While LVMH continues its search, Galliano's long-time first assistant designer, Bill Gaytten has taken over his signature line and is also caretaker at Dior.7. Ruby slippersOn 8 April, it emerged that shoemaker to the stars, Christian Louboutin, was suing Yves Saint Laurent for using a red sole to match the upper of a new-season suede pump. Louboutin trademarked his signature sole in 2008 and asked YSL to withdraw the offending item. "M Louboutin is the first designer to develop the idea of having red soles on women's shoes," his lawsuit stated. Attorneys acting on behalf of Yves Saint Laurent responded: "Red outsoles are a commonly used ornamental design feature in footwear, dating as far back as the red shoes worn by King Louis XIV in the 1600s and the ruby red shoes that carried Dorothy home in The Wizard of Oz." On 10 August, at the preliminary hearing in New York, Judge Victor Marrero took such flamboyancy one step further, denying the injunction and comparing the case to a hypothetical one in which Picasso sued Monet for using the colour blue. Louboutin's lawyers have said that they will keep fighting.8. Going GagaLady Gaga took to the Paris catwalk for her friend and collaborator Nicola Formichetti's debut show for Thierry Mugler on 3 March and the media went into overdrive. It's been a busy year for Formichetti elsewhere too. Since Jil Sander's departure from Uniqlo (her final collection is in store now), he has been appointed fashion director of the Japanese high-street giant's Innovation Project while Naoki Takisawa, formerly of Issey Miyake, is its new design director. Formichetti also curated a series of T-shirts for Uniqlo – designed by Gaga again, Alber Elbaz, Karl Lagerfeld and more – to raise money for those affected by the earthquake in Japan.9. High fliersOn 17 June, Prada floated on the Hong Kong stock exchange. Any interest was generated not least because it demanded full disclosure from the business, which hitherto had the luxury of keeping any figures to itself. And so it emerged that Miuccia Prada and her husband and Prada Group CEO Patrizio Bertelli earned €10m and €9.7m the previous year respectively, making them among the most highly paid figures in fashion.10. Alexander the greatSavage Beauty – an Alexander McQueen retrospective – opened at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York on 4 May and broke all attendance levels. The show was extended for a week in August to accommodate as many visitors as possible. McQueen's contemporary, Hussein Chalayan, was also honoured with an exhibition, this time at Paris's Les Arts Decoratifs – Mode et Textile that opened at the beginning of July.11. Back to schoolIn September, the £200m Central Saint Martins redevelopment opened its doors at Granary Square, King's Cross. For the first time in the college's history, students from the fine art, graphics, fashion, drama and performance departments gathered under one enormous roof – there's a massive 10 acres of floor space. The most famous fashion college in the world now has a working environment to match.12. Cool BritanniaTom Ford now thinks London Fashion Week is high-profile enough to be home to his twice-yearly women's ready-to-wear show – he unveiled his summer collection in the British fashion capital in September. If ever there was a year when this all-too-often beleaguered event exceeded all expectations then 2011 was surely it. Unprecedented attendance levels, not to mention talent that, like Meadham Kirchhoff's, more than lives up to the hype that surrounds it notwithstanding , Italy's Camera Nazionale della Moda has fixed its autumn 2012 collection dates in direct conflict with those of the British collections. The Huffington Post described this turn of events as "The Battle of the Catwalks" as, despite increased pressure from all sides, Milan's designer superpowers have refused so far to budge.13. Viva VersaceThere's nothing like a well-judged collaboration and 2011 has seen its fair share. Top of the list must be Versace for H&M, a baroque extravaganza that went on sale on 18 November – La Versace went so far as to make a personal appearance at the chain's Regent Street store. The collection sold out in a matter of days and was so successful there's more to come next year. Christopher Kane's line for J Brand, which launched in November, was an equally impressive coup, featuring candy coloured denim with fashionably frayed edges, courtesy of British fashion's designer du jour. Also of note this year has been Opening Ceremony's link-ups with MM6, Rodarte, Chloe Sevigny, Pendleton and more, and M.A.C's with Cindy Sherman, Gareth Pugh and Miss Piggy. Soon to come is the make-up brand's Daphne Guinness collection. Ms Guinness also launched a fragrance – named Daphne – with Comme des Garçons in September.14. Bear necessitiesWhoever said the fashion industry has no heart? In November, some of this world's main protagonists gave Pudsey Bear a makeover. Erdem, Louis Vuitton, Topshop, Giles Deacon, Pringle, Mulberry and Liberty were just some of the names who took part and bears were auctioned online to raise money for Children in Need. Vuitton's Pudsey (designed by Kim Jones, named Louis Vuitton's menswear director in March) went for a massive £35,600, putting any competition, however well-intentioned, into the shade.15. Great British brandNever a brand to miss a trick as far as digital innovation is concerned, at London Fashion Week in September Burberry gave the world its first ever "tweetwalk" – every exit appeared on Twitter moments before it made it on to the catwalk proper. Also of note, several key looks in the collection went on sale online immediately after they were shown – normally even the most fashion obsessed consumer would have to wait a good six months to buy them. More generally, and despite global recession, this much-loved British label continued to post figures that are surely the envy of its esteemed competitors the world over.Fashion AwardsThe 2011 British Fashion Awards took place on 28 November at the Savoy Hotel. And the winners were...Designer of the Year: Sarah Burton for Alexander McQueenIsabella Blow Award for Fashion Creator: Sam GainsburyNew Establishment Award: Christopher KaneRed Carpet Award: Stella McCartneyDesigner Brand: Victoria BeckhamMenswear Designer: Kim JonesAccessory Designer: Charlotte OlympiaOutstanding Achievement Award: Paul SmithModel of the Year: Stella TennantBritish Style Award (voted for by the British public): Alexa ChungThe contribution to fashion of stylist and editor-in-chief of LOVE magazine, Katie Grand, was acknowledged when, on 27 October, she received the Wall Street Journal Fashion Innovator Award. Grand was in elevated company. Ai Weiwei (art), Bjarke Ingels (architecture), Steve Ells (food), Elon Musk (technology), Joris Laarman (design) and The Giving Pledge (philanthropy) were among those also awarded gongs by the paper.The Way We WoreLooks we loved...Block colour (best at Jil Sander). Neon (Miu Miu and Christopher Kane). Pleats (that Whistles skirt). Androgyny (everywhere from Stella McCartney to Chanel and all over the high street too). Fetish (leather leggings and Louis Vuitton latex and handcuffs). Theyskens Theory (what's not to want?). Baseball jackets (Isabel Marant's spawned a million imitations). Polka dots (so Rive Gauche). Duffel coats (think Paddington Bear). Flats (finally running is fashionable). Glitter shoes (Dorothy lives and breathes). Knee boots (in leather, rubber, wedge, spike or flat-heeled). Practical bags (from the Céline cabas to the Cambridge Company's satchels).And weren't so sure about...Victoriana (a nice idea but so last century). Gap flares (we tried – and failed). Fruit prints (Prada's bananas were a timely ruse but grapefruits took things a step too far). Designer star prints (over before they had even started so easy were they for the high street to emulate). Navajo (the meaningless appropriation of faraway styles is less than desirable).Launches to remember...Prada costume jewellery (so true to the first lady of fashion's personal style). Make-up ranges from Tom Ford and Dolce & Gabbana (what could be more glamorous?). No. 19 Poudre (a lovely new interpretation) of the original scent. Chanel Peridot (the green/gold nail colour of the year). Jonathan Saunders menswear (chic but not cheap). Current Elliott menswear (now boys can wear the most beautifully worn denim too). Eres London (the finest swimwear in the world now has its own London home).And forget...Lanvin childrenswear (although we hate to say it, cuteness can go too far). Lip transfers (the last word in over-embellishment). Fe jeans (sitting on silicone implants seemed like a good idea at the time but then it didn't).And so farewell...Elizabeth Taylor, Loulou de la Falaise, François Lesage and Evelyn Lauder.Over fifty universities are showing their student's work this year, including Winchester School of Art, Ravensbourne College and Middlesex University.The seven-week-long exhibition will include catwalk events, talks from the designers and workshops.For more information go to So when faithful clients and label loyalists attend the international collections, it's a chance for them to plump for pieces straight from the catwalk and pre-order their favourites, which often won't arrive in stores for another six months. A handy way to stay on top of the trends and ensure you're snapping up the season's must-haves before they sell out – and undoubtedly an insider perk of the job.But it's also the shopping model behind a new capsule collection of clothing launching on the e-boutique Net-a-Porter. From Wednesday, McQ, the second line from Alexander McQueen, will offer its autumn 2012 collection on the site for exclusive pre-ordering for a week only. Pieces will then arrive in as soon as two months after the order has been placed, right at the very beginning of the new-season drops."Pre-order is a service that we have offered our customers in the past for truly exceptional collections," explains Net-a-Porter's buying director, Holli Rogers. "The first time was in 2007, when we collaborated with Roland Mouret on the relaunch of his brand. This was the first time customers could pre-order directly from the catwalk, anywhere."The McQ collection in question was a highlight of London Fashion Week last February, as models in strictly tailored but rustic wool coats and delicate but structured A-line dresses trod a catwalk strewn with crisp autumnal leaves. And the reinvigoration of the brand, as well as its return to the capital's schedule, has been met with enthusiasm and excitement among the industry's cognoscenti."As soon as we saw the McQ runway show, we knew our customers would love the collection as much as we did," Holli Rogers continues. "McQ wasn't originally planning to sell the collection, so it's wonderful to be able to offer our customers the chance to pre-order a piece of fashion history."Make no mistake, pre-ordering is for people who love their clothes, who eat, breathe and sleep fashion, and for whom only the most exclusive of pieces will do. But it's also a sales technique that is being adopted by more and more labels and shops, as customers become more confident about buying online and as the internet continues to speed up the traditional cycles of trends and tastes. High-street giant Topshop has started offering its autumn 2012 Unique collection to editors for pre-orders – and where that commercial force leads, others are sure to follow.Burberry, too, has become known for its engagement with online audiences, having last year launched a "Tweetwalk" (in which every catwalk look is tweeted during the show in real time) and, before that, a "Runway to Reality" service which means customers can buy pieces straight from the show via the company's website. "Customers can buy immediately from the show and receive in six to eight weeks," explains chief creative officer Christopher Bailey. "It has changed the whole system of buying, as well as the cycle of production. Basically you can buy every bag that goes down the runway, every coat, and the make-up as well." Needless to say, it's months before the same items are scheduled to arrive in the shops."During the international fashion weeks, we see immediate responses from clients about the collections," says Selfridges' client-services manager, James Servini. "We can receive enquiries as soon as a day after a show. It's mostly a very fashion-savvy customer who will be interested – somebody who has an intuitive sense of which looks define the coming season. They're extremely sure of how they want to dress, and particularly passionate about 'newness'."With the refurbishment of the store's Designer Galleries this year, Selfridges has also launched a lookbook of imagery that has further increased the potential for pre-orders. Working with the buying team to gauge shipments and arrivals, these customers, their tastes and inputs are also helping to shape the selection that will finally arrive on the shop floor – James Servini points particularly to high-end and directional labels such as Haider Ackermann, Ann Demeulemeester and Rick Owens, which are consistently popular orders. The practice may be for a minority, but it's an excellent way for both designers and buyers to canvass opinion, of getting an instant reaction and a sense of which might be the strongest looks in the range."Pre-ordering gives more choice to the customer," agrees designer Jonathan Saunders. "Often people look for more special pieces – which are sometimes not picked up by the stores. It's really interesting to see what people select."In this way, shops are slowly returning to the old system of trunk shows and private views. Some designers still do these in person – Michael Kors runs a circuit of chi-chi boutiques across the US for his diehard fans, while Nina Ricci's Peter Copping and Alber Elbaz at Lanvin have also resurrected the practice – but Net-a-Porter's idea is that the trunk show can be run digitally, and orders taken there. It's a modern approach with roots in a much more personalised couture tradition. Moda Operandi (which stocks Jonathan Saunders, Alexander Wang and Marc Jacobs, among many others) also offers online trunk shows, as well as from-the-catwalk ordering."Everyone is planning the next season in advance," says Kay Barron, fashion-features editor at Harper's Bazaar, "and we're not as spontaneous as we once were. You have to put quite a lot of thought into it and really understand your personal style. But it's always worth it, so long as you actually like what you've ordered when it arrives three months later."In addition to a selection of elegant canapés and tea sandwiches, nibbles are outfitted by some of the world's most popular designers. The London hotel's pastry team pays homage, for instance, to Chloé's summer clutch in the form of praline and gold chocolate beads.Victoria Beckham's signature summer tote is recreated in peach-colored sponge cake and a chocolate crocodile print; Stella McCartney's summer citrus print motif is interpreted in orange, blueberry and lemon mousse, papaya, red currant, and topped with pate de fruit; and a Marc Jacobs jumpsuit is made with raspberry and lychee cream and accented with an oversized chocolate flower belt.The hotel also collaborated with Thomas Goode of Mayfair which produced a bespoke collection of Paul Smith fine bone china to be used for the tea.The collection is changed every six months to follow the trends in fashion.The afternoon Prêt-à-Portea is served in the hotel's Caramel Room from 1 pm to 6 pm every day for £36.50 (€42). Add a glass of champagne and that goes up to between £46.50 (€53) to £53 (€60).Earlier this month, pastry houses and couture designers collaborated in an outdoor exhibit Haute Cuisine Paris, to showcase the allied crafts of haute cuisine and haute couture.Also in Paris, Café de la Paix near the Opera Garnier also collaborates every year with a fashion designer to create a new dessert. Thierry Mugler's Rosemary Rodriguez created a dessert called Pop Fizz last year.And a New York-based food blog featuring of fashion designers like Alexander Wang is also set to launch this week.For more information on the tea service, visit .  The trend for scuba and surf wear first made a splash a few months ago, with the launch of the cruise collections. Stella McCartney's oversized shirts and T-shirt dresses are decorated with tropical prints fit for wear on a Hawaiian beach. Alexander McQueen's McQ has opted for a body-conscious silhouette with skin-tight leggings, mini dresses and jumpsuits finished with zips galore and engineered print stretch tops, all of which wouldn't look out of place on very stylish diving boat.Alexander Wang and Richard Nicholl, too, have flirted with the trend. Michael Kors has taken a literal view: though made of comfortable stretch wool-crepe, dresses and high-necked swimwear in classic wet-suit patterns are cinched at the waist with a diver-style clip belt.Swimwear designer Lisa Marie Fernandez has similarly made the most of bringing underwater style to the surface. Her neoprene designs represent scuba chic at its finest. From skimpy metallic bikinis to sleeved, high-necked swimsuits and more that take their inspiration from rash vests, this collection has something for all and the designer makes a killer Lycra dress while she's at it. This season, Fernandez has also collaborated with Peter Pilotto, creating swimwear in more neoprene that showcases the London label's signature digital prints.The scuba look has of course trickled down to the more affordable high street. All the usual suspects have gone for beach chic in some way or another. River Island has great printed leggings, Asos's cut-away swimsuits are spot on and Hobbs' "surf" dresses trimmed with sporty black piping detail are worth hunting down.As far as beauty is concerned, it's not difficult to fake the beach goddess look away from the shores. Spritz on Bumble & Bumble's "surf spray" for textured, full-bodied "just-been-for-a-swim-but-I-still-look-great" hair. Wet-look colour for the eyes also adds to the look: MAC's Paint Pots and Laura Mercier's Cream Eye Colour both give the eye a glowing sheen worthy of a mermaid.Leave the snorkels and surfboards at home, however. The only accessories to be concerned with are bags, shoes and belts. The latter is important to enhance the waist in second-skin dresses. For bags, oversized clutches in bright neon hues cut a dash, all with the obligatory zip fastening.Flip-flops should be avoided: the look is far to up-tempo for flats. Instead, go for a high-heeled sandal with multi-straps, and make sure it comes in a bold, block-colour too. Oh, and it almost goes without saying, these are for the dance floor, not the sand...The cellist Yo-Yo Ma is no stranger to the White House, having performed at Barack Obama's inauguration two years ago. The night was not strictly pleasure for the Paris-born musician, who performed three pieces from Western and Chinese composers after the dessert of balsamic ice-cream had been served.While Yo-Yo Ma can certainly be counted among the highbrow guests at the dinner, not everyone fell into that category. Jackie Chan, the Hollywood star who lists The Tuxedo and Rush Hour Two among his acting credits, was also an invitees Like the Chinese Premier, the Hong Kong-born actor eschewed the black-tie dress code. BD Wong, the star of Seven Years in Tibet, was also among the Hollywood stars to attend.Michelle Kwan may be symbolic of future ties. An Olympic silver medallist figure skater, Ms Kwan enjoys huge popularity in US, where she is counted among the country's leading sportswomen, and is well known in China.Many business leaders were at the White House, but media tycoon Rupert Murdoch was too busy to join his Chinese-born wife Wendi Deng Murdoch at the White House. Designer Vera Wang was also a guest, and well placed to cast a critical eye over the First Lady's Alexander McQueen-designed dress.So what do the economically minded do when the mood calls for restraint, and all things ephemeral are tangibly tasteless? When the creaking cycle of trade and trend ground to a halt in September 2008 – as Lehman Brothers collapsed during the London collections – the fashion world was not quite ready for it. It-bags and mega-shoes costing upwards of £13,000, store launches and sushi: the in-crowd had not bargained for a credit crisis. There was much talk of hemlines rising as the stock market plummeted, of vibrant brights that keep our collective chin up; no one, in short, could reconcile what was emerging on the catwalk with what was happening at the cash points.Some labels at that point turned to a newly austere look: for autumn/winter 2008, Prada showed high-necked black-lace dresses, ornate but severely so, while Yves Saint Laurent's Stefano Pilati came up with androgynous boxy tailoring shown on models identically dressed in black pudding-bowl wigs and ebony lipstick. And Marc Jacobs unveiled a fresh vision at luxury label Louis Vuitton: stone, neutral and pastel pieces, such as collarless jackets and sculpted peg trousers – quite the remove from his usual brash and cartoonish collections.By the following season, designers began to develop this "new austerity" (as Vogue had by this point officially termed it), and another aesthetic emerged, spearheaded by Phoebe Philo and her first collection for the French house Céline. Here she presented eminently luxurious knits, tunic dresses, capes and buttery leather T-shirts, allcut in strong and simple shapes, with no embellishment or frippery. With nothing, in fact, extraneous to its construction. It sounded a new note within the industry and sent it in a completely different direction.Forget the po-faced architects and sombre artists of yesteryear: New Minimalism was a movement that distilled all of the quality, desirability and "must-have" nature of previous aesthetics into something more palatable for a troubled economy. It was cogent in the face of insolvency; it allowed for our straitened shopping habits; it spoke of hard times and simple solutions: it was the era of the minimalist revival. Shopping and fashion – particularly high-end fashion – were OK; stealth wealth and investment buys were key.Previous habits of disposable pieces and conspicuous consumption fell by the wayside – people wanted durable, quality items that were anonymous enough to be worn again and again, and versatile enough to work anywhere and everywhere. Minimalism was a functional alternative to the "spend, spend, spend" ethos, by way of both practicality and fashionability.Clothes became plainer, as did their messages. Designers such as Stella McCartney and Hannah MacGibbon at Chloé followed suit, with pragmatic tailoring in neutral palettes; young names in the industry, such as New York's Alexander Wang and London's Heikki Salonen (who had previously focused on grungy, urban streetwear) began showing pared-down sportswear in black, white and grey; even celebrity designers such as Victoria Beckham, who had surfed the crest of the bling wave on the strength of their names alone, turned to strict silhouettes, minimal adornment and muted colours. Minimalism was soon much more than a trend; it became a zeitgeist.Just over a year ago, I wrote a piece for this magazine, cataloguing the new ways in which designers had been manipulating the aesthetic to suit it to their signatures and their fanbases. I looked at the fledgling names coming through who were making it their trademark. And I tried to look into where it had come from. What I found was that minimalism has been the weft and weave not only of modern fashion but of the modern social fabric since the turn of the 20th century. Any history of the discipline becomes a social commentary that reaches much further than the intellectual enclaves with which it is usually associated.Minimalism, its ebb and flow as a popular aesthetic, underpins almost every single social development of the 20th century. As women are liberated from their houses and roles in the 1920s, so they are freed, too, from the swathes of restrictive clothing, skirts, corsets and crinolines. As they take to the streets and to the workplace in the 1970s and 1980s, so clothing becomes more simplified, more masculine and more practical – and when the backlash to feminism came, at the end of that period, so the catwalks filled up with froufrou and frills and frothy femininity.So it happened that in this recession – billed "the women's recession" on account of where job losses and Government cuts might hit the hardest – fashion once again became simple and sanitised, androgynous rather than objectifying. And it was no coincidence that the designers creating these clothes that dictated a mood were all women too: Philo, McCartney and MacGibbon.But minimalism is also behind wider social trends – reductivism has ever been a means of progress and innovation, from early designers such as Paul Poiret and Fortuny, who sought to overhaul the excess of contemporary womenswear, to the space-age designers of the 1960s – André Courrèges and Pierre Cardin, whose clean, streamlined shapes introduced a new sort of futurism not only to fashion, but to emerging consumer and lifestyle trends. Furniture became streamlined too, as did architecture and art; the geometry and uncluttered work of De Stijl artists directly influenced Yves Saint Laurent when he created his Mondrian dress.Minimalism as a fashion directive is imbued with political relevance, too – the emergent Japanese designers Yohji Yamamoto and Rei Kawakubo of Comme des Garçons used drab, sombre and often deliberately distressed clothes to undercut the haute bourgeois looks of the 1980s, while the Belgians Martin Margiela and Ann Demeulemeester deconstructed classic tailoring and wardrobe basics to superbly gothic effect.Ultimately, fashion has moved on once more – as it always does. But the minimalism that came with a certain moment still informs the looks being unveiled on the catwalks this season: shapes are plainer; femininity is played down, spoken in colour and sculpted shapes rather than frills and froth; and above all, the emphasis remains on investment.It will take us a while to rehabilitate our weary wallets, but the time will come again for conspicuous consumption. George Osborne and Mervyn King may not know what's in store, but you can be sure of one thing: we haven't seen the back of modern minimalism just yet.'Less is More: Minimalism in Fashion', (Merrell, £35), by Harriet Walker, is out nowThe book: Classy by Derek BlasbergNew York fashion journalist Derek Blasberg's sparkling new fashion etiquette guide is a must for anyone braving Fashion Week. With help on all matters, from how to get ahead to how to avoid the worst dressed lists, don't leave home without it.£9.99, Harveynichols.comCharles Anastase, designerThe music for my show is Serge Gainsbourg's Gainsbourg percussion. After the show I'm dining with my investors at Scott's restaurant in Mayfair, which I love. And I will probably end up going with designer Louise Gray to the Ponystep party and to Claridge's with my American friends, from the band The Like, who are in town.Heikki Salonen, designerFor fashion week I am preparing for the spring/summer 2011 Fashion East show that will take place in the Old Eurostar Terminal Building at Waterloo station. I hope to be eating out in the new HEL YES! restaurant, which I'm excited about, because for me it's something I can really relate to – to see and eat some Finnish food in London is going to be incredible for me!The music: Burberry acousticBurberry's Christopher Bailey has teamed up with the British Fashion Council to create the first in a collection of albums that celebrate fashion's relationship with the music industry. Featuring tracks from David Bowie, Good Shoes and The Boomtown Rats, it's a lively selection of classics and cool kids that sum up the label's modern take on British heritage chic. Released on 20 September.Hannah Marshall, designerMy show is on the first day of Fashion Week, so I will get to enjoy the rest. During the day, I'll be doing sales appointments with buyers and seeing press. It's nice to put faces to names since so much is done over email. There are always some great parties in London too – at Bungalow 8 and Shoreditch House, and the Mulberry party is guaranteed fun.The restaurant: HEL YES!Super-cute pop-up restaurant HEL YES! offers the finest in Finnish cuisine and design, within a lofty warehouse. With staff uniforms created exclusively by ex-pat Heikki Salonen (above), who will show his collection as part of Fashion East on 21 September, it's definitely the coolest seat in town. And all that fish oil will be a perfect restorative for a weary fashion pack. Open until 3 October, see Helyes.fi for details.The editor's picks: The love machineFashion from a vending machine? Not just any vending machine, one of the most luxe ones around. The Morgans' Semi-Automatic vending machine can be found in glamorous hotels around the world and Fashion Week sees it based at St Martins Lane in London. Katie Grand, editor of LOVE magazine, has collected her favourite pieces from Selfridges for you to choose from. It doesn't take small change, though. Stmartinslane.comThe auction: The car boot-iqueIf you're looking for a piece of fashion memorabilia, log on to the Car Boot-ique. The online auction will raise money for Fashion East and Laureus Sport for Good Foundation by selling designer pieces ranging from Christopher Kane to a six-foot apple that decorated the Mulberry catwalk last season. Look out too for the limited-edition finger puppets of fashion editors: Suzy Menkes in miniature! Mercedes-benz.co.uk/fashionThe wheels: London cycle chicWho says cycling is for nerds? Designer Jean-Pierre Braganza has created a limited-edition version of the London hire bike, rendered in the same bird and rose print used in his spring/summer 2011 collection – which he'll show on the catwalk this Friday. The bikes will also launch that day, so look out for them whizzing around the capital, bringing a bit of glamour to the daily commute. Go to TFL.gov.uk for more details.The venue: Waterloo stationFashion Week's main marquees are set up at Somerset House on the Embankment, but the Topshop venue is where the younger NEWGEN designers show, and this season sees the reincarnation of Waterloo station's old Eurostar terminal, with a catwalk along the tracks. For those who want in on the action, Topshop will screen the shows live and in 3D at their Oxford Circus store. With a view like that, who needs a front row seat?Kinder Aggugini, designerYou always see people in amazing looks at Fashion Week and I wonder where they all come from and where they go when the week is over. I love the music for my show – a mix of eerie sounds with rocking beats and some new electro tracks. I'll mainly be hanging out in my basement while we prepare the show – but there's hardwood floors and floor-to-ceiling mirrors and Itsu for lunch, so I have no complaints.Sarah Harris, fashion writer, VogueDays will be spent hotfooting it between Somerset House and Waterloo, so I've bought some Jimmy Choo biker boots which are fur-lined and flat for comfort. I'm most excited to see Christopher Kane and Meadham Kirchoff's shows. We always start off with good intentions, snacking on seeds and fruit, but by the end of the week it's Haribo and Cadbury's Whole Nut.The young blood: Daisy CraverCraver, a recent graduate from the University of Westminster, is the latest winner of the Warehouse Design Competition, which plucks out talented young designers and gives them the chance to design for a major high-street label. Her leather jackets (above, £350) and goth-chic skirts (£40) are just a couple of highlights and the capsule collection arrives in store on 16 September. Warehouse.co.ukThe wardrobe: Shop 24Dressing for the shows is notoriously difficult – balancing comfort with cool is no easy task. Thanks, then, to Browns, whose new Shop 24 concept brings together staples and basics from some of the coolest labels around, such as Alexander Wang, Vince and Surface to Air. The one-stop shop for wardrobe essentials includes this camel coat by Carven, £630, and look out too for jewellery by the ultra-hip Pamela Love.To unveil his latest collection, he chose the Lexington Armory, far from the more establishment setting of the Lincoln Center, headquarters of the Autumn-Winter 2011 New York Fashion Week.And if the week has so far revealed a steady trend of heavy cloth, red colors and liberal use of fur, Jacobs, as usual, broke the rules.The setting was the 1940s, but the models strutting down the catwalk were hyper-modern, 21st century - or more. They wore vinyl boots with stacked heels, pencil skirts and sequins.There were a lot of rubber trousers, cellophane shirts and fake fur. Plus a healthy dose of polka dots, although not those of some romantic summer look but rather set against severe cuts.The wild, space-age show had fashion bloggers gasping and proved that yet again Jacobs could turn up half way through Fashion Week and lead the pack.For other designers, the big muse this year appears to have been the rigors of the harsh winter, sending creators to dig around for warm and cozy materials.New York saw record snowfall in January so perhaps it's no surprise that furs and quilted jackets have made had such a heavy presence on catwalks, from Calvin Klein men to Catherine Malandrino or the Thai-American designer Thakoon Panichgul.Alexander Wang set the tone on Saturday with thick black ponchos. Satin covered the legs and cashmere the top.Wang said he wanted to mix "all types of coats, anoraks, parkas, capes."On Sunday, Derek Lam showed flannel coats with sleeves in fur, a popular material this year, whether it's astrakhan, fox or mink.Calvin Klein stepped forward with a men's collection that should suit those Wall Street hot shots as they navigate lower Manhattan's windy streets: big fur or leather coats, aviator jackets and electric blue puffas."I'm interested in the idea of protection" from the cold, said Italo Zucchelli, artistic director for CK menswear.Catherine Malandrino nodded toward traditional nostalgia for her native France in a collection including romanticism and eccentricity. But she too made sure her leather coats and jackets were lined with fur.Thakoon, one of the stars of a new American fashion wave, opted for the quilted look, not just in jackets but in dresses too.Donna Karan came up with severe-looking black and white coats to warm up models wearing black mini-dresses.Sourced from the house's own archives, they referenced a similar design from the spring 1996 collection. And that very evening, some fortuitous eBaying took me straight to a pair of the originals – cut for a different era, of course, and ever so slightly too small, but I bought them nonetheless. For 50 quid. Six months before the latest version even appeared in stores.I'm not the sort to stay up all night bidding and I don't have much of a strategy. But in the past year, I've accrued a selection of designer pieces from eBay and similar sites – the Prada trousers (they don't really fit), a Comme des Garçons skirt, a Nineties Ann Demeulemeester blazer – all immensely wearable, all in great condition and all for significantly less than you might expect to pay in a shop.The internet's role in the democratisation of high-end fashion is well documented, from street-style blogs to live-streamed catwalk shows. But it has also spawned a generation of informed bargain hunters.Innovative and accessible new retail sites and concepts mean that, even as traditional retailers are re-adjusting to a frosty climate, buyers can stalk cyberspace round the clock for cut-price goods. Alex Fury, editor of LOVE magazine, agrees: "I love eBay and discount websites, because you get a second chance to buy the clothes you missed out on first time around. Hindsight is a wonderful thing in fashion: you often don't realise how much you love something until you can't get it any more."So much is borne out by the flourishing of past-season and second hand websites offering high-end designer clothing at what is often a fraction of the original price. Lian Michelson is the founder of the site Then and Now (thenandnowshop.com), which sells current collections from labels such as Rick Owens and Yves Saint Laurent, as well as pieces from their back catalogues."Fashion is cyclical and trends often repeat themselves," she explains. "Finding past season items for discounted prices that still fit with what's on the catwalk is not difficult."Then and Now allows shoppers to buy in-season and search through the current trends, while also offering those who are more price-sensitive a slice of luxury for less."The Outnet (theoutnet.com) was one of the first of these concepts to launch, in April 2009. It carries more than 250 top labels at up to 70 per cent off and hosts clearance sales that often crash the site, such is the demand among shoppers. "You used to have to travel to out-of-town outlets or be in the know about sample sales," says managing director Stephanie Phair. "But the internet has changed all that. I think for our customers there is an element of pride in finding a fabulous, past-season designer piece at great value." Names on the roster include Alexander Wang, Marni and Maison Martin Margiela, all known for their conspicuously directional aesthetic. Usually such tell-tale items are a no-no when it comes to sale shopping, but attitudes to whether pieces are brand new or not seem to have changed."'Last season' used to be one of the worst insults you could hurl at anyone fashionable," says Alex Fury. "But people today seem to appreciate a garment for being beautiful rather than for razor-edge appeal. There is a sense of longevity to really luxurious garments that mean you buy them in-season and out."The profusion of discounted designer sites means that clothing which is six months old (or older) is no longer passé; instead, this has become the savviest way to shop. If fast fashion went out with Bear Stearns on the tsunami of the credit crunch, then collecting cannily and with caution (not to mention an eye on the purse strings) is what has taken its place. And these types of websites have cashed in on precisely that zeitgeist, by offering cheap alternatives and the chance to make money from your existing wardrobe.Stylesequel.com has a "Closet Concierge" service that collects your unwanted and unworn designer pieces and re-sells them online, allocating a cut to both the owner and the company. "There has been an explosion in the second hand market online in the last couple of years," says founder Emma Allen. "You can find an amazing selection of high-end fashion bargains any time, in any country. You don't have to pay thousands for a designer piece, you can get one for hundreds. I like to call it 'second-chance style'."Allen began in 2005 by selling designer pieces on eBay, the first second-hand and auction site of its kind, which commenced bidding as early as 1993. It does a roaring trade in second-hand and box-fresh designer items, from classic names right up to the most avant garde: type in 'Rick' and 'Owens' is the first suggested search term.There is a cult of buyers and sellers in the community, seeking out beloved labels that are more usually priced well beyond their budgets."I'm pretty good at eBay," admits fashion photographer Atlanta Rascher. "I basically wear all my clothes for a while, then sell them again. I only wear designer, but never spend a penny – I hate the high street because of child labour, and I can't afford to buy new."But I bought a really nice Balenciaga camel hair coat from a 2005 collection recently for £23. And a Lanvin fur coat for £350, down from £4,000. I think the lady who sold it was going through a divorce and needed some cash."Incredibly, a piece of clothing is sold on eBay every second; a designer handbag goes every seven seconds; and more than 700 dresses sell every hour."People no longer walk into a shop and buy a head-to-toe look off a mannequin," says Carrie Bienkowski, eBay UK's head of fashion. "Shoppers have their own individual style and gain inspiration from all over the web. eBay enables people to find everything they need, from high street must-haves to that amazing bag from last season, to one-off vintage finds."Internet fashion is then one of few heartening instances of increased consumer choice and people power in this respect. That's not to say that the stress of watching, bidding and counter-bidding is for everyone, but the web has opened up fashion to a much wider audience. Just beware the heat of the chase and set yourself a limit – many an enthusiastic eBayer has ended up paying over the odds for something that they didn't really want. And let the Prada trousers be a warning: make sure what you're bidding on will actually fit.Going once! How to eBayKnow your designers: if there's a label which you particularly love, swot up on its recent collections so that you're more likely to recognise pieces when they do pop up.Buy winter garments in summer, and vice versa, when prices are low.Shop in January, as people offload unwanted presents and fewer people are spending.Don't raise the stakes too quickly: bid cautiously so you don't inflate prices and set yourself a strict maximum before you get carried away.Sell on a Sunday, and in the evening in particular, when more people are browsing – sales in December tend to generate four times as much as at other times of year.Prabal GurungPrabal Gurung is proving to be one of fashion's "new guard" designers. After Sarah Jessica Parker wore one of the designer's gowns during Fashion's Night Out a couple of weeks ago, the front row was packed with the beautiful and fabulous, from outlandish rapper Nicki Minaj to model Elettra Wiedemann. Structured whimsy and an abundance of amazing graphics and prints were inspired by Nobuyoshi Araki's Sensual Flowers.Helmut LangNext, it was on to one of my favourite brands, Helmut Lang, and design duo Nicole and Michael Colovos' first runway appearance. Actress Rose McGowan and Misshapes DJ Leigh Lezark sat front row in the currently disused Hudson River Park Pier 57, an enormous ex-cargo transport pier in the middle of a construction site. Models wore sharply cut tailoring, washed prints, jersey drapes, asymmetric cuts, all in a simple yet striking colour palette of black, white, grey and yellow.Alexander WangWang has trademarked the glossy-grunge-streetwear-meets-sport aesthetic. Perforated leather bombers, iridescent city shorts, sleeveless laser-cut blazers, pumped-up silk shirts and slick, black pants teamed with "just out of the shower" hair, will appeal. BMX/motocross influences combined delicate floral watercolour prints with tight pants, cropped jackets, leather bandanas, industrial-sized zips and even the odd motorcycle helmet.AltuzarraAnother leading talent of the new generation, Joseph Altuzarra, really proved himself this season. The designer explored his grunge, fetish and utilitarian inspirations, initially with monochromatic, tailored combinations which then hit a curve with psychedelic Hawaiian prints splashed across silk shifts, trousers and jumpsuits and peeking through slits carved into fluted hems and cinched waists, piped down the leg of a cigarette pant or decorating a sleeve.Victoria BeckhamThis season saw Victoria Beckham's first fully fledged runway show. Held in the New York Public Library, it showcased her recurring signature of elegant, hourglass silhouettes with structured cocoon wool coats, and form-fitting full-length dresses. Ms Beckham also capitalised on the sporty aesthetic that has been popping up all over New York this week. Hats off to her for somehow managing to achieve the impossible and designing two collections, having a baby and still being a poster girl for the glamorous side of fashion – all without seemingly batting an eyelid! Her second line – Victoria by Victoria Beckham – is a feminine, pretty collection and one that we are extremely excited to launch.DVFSusan Sarandon, Oscar de la Renta and Valentino all turned out for Diane von Furstenberg's show, where designer Yvan Mispelaere showed his best collection for the label thus far. Clean, crisp and sophisticated, it was called Beginnings, as a tribute to the 10-year anniversary of 9/11 that day.PreenDesigner couple Thea Bregazzi and Justin Thornton's inspiration was literary heroine Virginia Woolf. Aside from some flashes of virginal white lace, however, the execution was far more avant-garde, including hi-tech, pixelated, pastel geometrics, trompe l'oeil prints and glitterball sequins.Donna KaranAt Donna Karan we were treated to a show of luxe sportswear. Everything was soft, raw and rugged, and swept from the Hamptons to Parrot Cay and the NYC streets. After travelling to Haiti, she brought these two worlds together with a vibrant, sophisticated and sexy collection.Ralph LaurenThe release of the remake of The Great Gatsby is imminent, and Ralph Lauren's show was a taster. The venue was an idyllic English garden of sorts. Models wore silk pyjama pants, pretty bias-cut tea dresses and the designer's riff on Daisy Buchanan's summer hat. Androgynous tailoring contrasted with full-length gowns that swooshed down the runway and had red-carpet dressing written all over them.Marc JacobsMarc Jacobs cited the 1920s as the influence for his collection too. In this case, though, it was mashed up in an abstract, space-age fashion. Futuristic flapper girls wore cloche hats, tailored separates and drop-waist dresses embellished with high-shine fringing, sequins and cellophane. For the designer's second line – Marc by Marc Jacobs – grown-up cuts with a youthful outlook was the story: sleeveless silk shirts, oversized yet crisp cocoon shirt-dresses, full-length jumpsuits, A-line drawstring skirts and colour-pop holdalls.RodarteThe Mulleavy sisters treated us to a mash-up of Walt Disney's original 1959 version of Sleeping Beauty and Van Gogh's Sunflowers. Burnished golds and yellows were used across a collection that featured structured separates – including cigarette pants and sleeveless jackets with sci-fi triangular shoulders – juxtaposed with boho full-length dresses. My favourite was a retro-1970s full-length gown with tulle overlay and Van Gogh-inspired sunflower print.Theyskens' TheoryOlivier Theyskens creates the perfect wardrobe mix for the cool, downtown girls of NY, and to this end he surely satisfied. Slick, wet-look T-shirts teamed with cropped leather waistcoats, boxy tweed jackets worn with high-waisted denim shorts that could certainly pass muster in the office, and louche, stylish knits were all standout elements for me.Proenza SchoulerThe designers' inspiration was space-age Googie architecture and the stylistic details of the 1940s, including neat A-line dresses and nipped-in waists. New York's fascination with print rumbled on as we were treated to glimpses of 1950s Hawaii and swirling florals. The sexy sophistication for which the duo are known and the detail and intricacies of the workmanship shone through. Burnt orange, cobalt blue and sunshine yellow left the audience on a happy high.L'Wren ScottThis show opened with an upbeat assortment of beaming and buoyant 1940s-inspired shift dresses, Capri pants and snappy jackets in sky blues and sunny yellows. The glamorous French Riviera set were cited as the inspiration behind sweeping silk, silver-screen gowns and jewels, sequins and sparkle scattered across the collection. A particularly beautiful poppy-print gown hugged the model's figure in all the right places.Calvin KleinOpting for a delicately sensuous approach, Calvin Klein designer Francisco Costa sent models meandering down the catwalk in a selection of wispy, glossy, silk slips, some balanced with elongated tailored jackets. An all-black sequence was more moody but such things are relative and in no way disrupted the pared-back elegance and beauty of it all.Showroom AppointmentsJ Brand After setting denim trends with skinny styles, cargo silhouettes and bright colours, J Brand branched into sportswear. From next spring, the company will offer a new collection to complement the denim of easygoing, uncomplicated and subtly sophisticated minimal jackets to toss over jeans, cropped khaki macs cinched at the waist and hand-knitted bolero sweaters.The Row Harvey Nichols exclusively launched The Row with the Olsen twins back in 2007 and it was an immediate hit. Best described as relaxed minimalist luxe, it's clear that the girls work hard on the cut and shape of each of their pieces. From oversized kaftans to maxis with sheer hems, their latest collection was swathed in clean-coloured silk and looked just as beautiful on the hanger as it had at the show.Pink hair was one of the most dominant beauty trends on the runways, but it wasn't the only look reminiscent of the punk years: Alexander Wang, Chris Benz, and Prabal Gurung all went for hair and makeup that drew on the 1990s, while fashion blog writes that "we spotted a slew of black models rocking a buzzed cut. ... And sure, a shaved head definitely has roots in '80s punk and '90s grunge (think Grace Jones, Empire Records, Sinead O'Connor, and M'Shell Ndegeocello) ...."Speaking of musical references, the label Vena Cava handed out a magazine instead of the usual press release: 'Zina Cava' fed on the younger generation of editors' nostalgia for the decade, referencing everything from Zima to No Doubt, with prints of the obligatory Calvin Klein Jeans ads. The US design duo said they got inspired by Fiona Apple's music for a collection that included elements as elementarily 1990s as thin pleats - a detail that also appeared at Rachel Comey on maxi dresses.One of the most lauded designers of the fashion week, Alexander Wang, was no exception to the rule, as describes: "[Wang] looked more to Tom Ford at Gucci for inspiration. No, there weren't satin suits, but there were satin, sparkly skinny pants in pink, purple, and grey. There were also satin skirts cut up like streamers below the knee, paired with matching mohair sweaters in champagne and pale pink. Add on some furry stripper shoes - very Carrie Bradshaw circa 1998-and a satin poncho fit for Gwyneth Paltrow in her Brad Pitt days, and you've got a quintessentially late-'90s wardrobe."Further evidence of the 1990s 'mania' were chokers, as seen at Tory Burch and Thakoon, turtlenecks that were spotted at Edun and Altuzarra and 'excessively' incorporated into every BCBG Max Azria look, and maxi dresses that were a staple on the runways of Tommy Hilfiger, Kimberly Ovitz, and Mara Hoffman. Cool metallic collars appeared on sexy sheath dresses, while sleek jersey gowns were given an edge with snakeskin inserts, although the cone-shaped bras will be reserved for only the most daring customers. The result was a uniquely modern collection, and the patchworked dresses are a definite must for next season. We will be watching this new creative talent for a long time to come.Alexander WangAt Alexander Wang, the model's favourite designer and purveyor of all things black surprised us with a well-executed collection of mostly white looks. (White, incidentally, is shaping up as the colour of the spring/summer 2011 season.) Wang's smart interpretation of the judo jacket and parachute pants showed him using Japanese and martial-arts-style themes to achieve a much softer, cleaner silhouette. A new direction and one that adds to our conviction that he is an influential force in fashion. The designer went on to tease the audience with a dash of mint, coral and outstanding graffiti prints for the finale. I loved his wide-legged carpenter pants, which could be worn with one of the vests from his more reasonably priced T by Alexander Wang line.Marc JacobsA homage to the Seventies, inspired by the New York Dolls and Yves Saint Laurent, Marc Jacobs' collection also had a distinct Studio 54 feel about it. While everyone else is exploring pale shades and white, Jacobs embraced strong colour in a big way: cerise, pink and orange were all there. There were trouser suits, Missoni-esque zig-zag knit dresses and jumpers, sexy halterneck, chiffon and silk/jersey dresses, hot pants and strapless jumpsuits with daring, thigh-high splits. As always, the styling was impeccable, and sure to set the trends. Look out for gold, glitter platforms, chain bags and wide-brimmed hats à la Jodie Foster in Taxi Driver.Marc by Marc JacobsFor his diffusion label, Marc by Marc Jacobs, the tattooed designer showed a cleaner, sportier take on the Seventies theme. There were slouchy jumpsuits, some in parachute silk – a key fabric for next season – striped jersey tank dresses, shorts (which are still big news, especially on the streets of New York), and T-shirts. High-waisted and mid-length skirts were worn with tight sweaters, and trousers were teamed with polka-dot pussy-bow blouses. Dresses were key and there were so many to choose from: a pretty grey jersey dress, flirty halterneck dress and embroidered dresses that will fly off the shelves.RodartePossibly one of the most beautiful shows I have ever seen. As models walked out to the sound of "The End" by the Doors, the Seventies influence that has been sweeping New York was apparent yet again. So too was a Navajo theme, but there was also something so romantic about this show, in the jackets with cut-out shoulders, embroidered dresses worn with draped skirts over the top (layering is another key trend), pleated trousers, shorts, and Chinese-inspired tops all in shades of brown and gold. The Ming-vase-print dresses added a flash of bright colour to the collection as a whole and offered a soft contrast to some of the harder looks. The gold lame gladiator-style dresses were exquisite. You can see why LVMH is rumoured to have its eyes on these girls.Donna KaranDonna Karan's latest collection is called "Raw Romance" and it was exactly that; there was not even a hint of her signature black. Instead the palette was all gold, tan, cream and honey, and jackets came in crumpled, stretched satin or silk, washed linen and leather – all very natural. The collection had a sensual feel to it, with crepe bias-cut slip dresses caressing the body and a vintage-style long nubuck skirt. The finale of delicately embroidered bronze evening dresses in liquid silk were to die for. As Karan herself says: "These clothes are modern, weightless and effortless – ready to romance the urban nomad wherever she goes." Over at DKNY, there was a definite New York theme coming through, from the invitation through to the backdrop spelling out "tongue-in-chic" New York-style slogans such as "Big Apple of My Eye".Diane Von FurstenbergThis was ex-Gucci designer Yvan Mispelaere's first collection for the glamorous Ms Von Furstenberg – watched by the Sex in the City actress Sarah Jessica Parker in the front row – and it was an incredibly polished one with a goddess theme. "It started when we took our first walk together through Paris to see the Isadora Duncan show," Von Furstenberg said, and this influence came through in the draped dresses. The classic DVF prints were there, but were bolder and stronger, and again tailoring was paramount in the form of pant suits and skinny trousers. Sleeveless hooded jumpsuits made me yearn for next summer. Now.Phillip LimKeeping with his familiar theme of simple, wearable clothes, this season Phillip Lim introduced layering and geometric shapes to the mix. Pieces such as a black laser-edged T-shirt were very pretty and there were little skirts with peplums and jumpers over the top. The neutral colour palette saw nude tulle mixed with black to give the illusion of bare skin. My favourite piece was the classic trench, which looked particularly chic in organza. Sheer was also a big story, on the backs of T-shirts and shift dresses. Although the show seemed simple and pared down, it had a strong luxury feel about it. Lim's very loyal customer base won't be disappointed next season.PreenWith a front row that included models Kelly Brook and Liberty Ross, stylist Caroline Seiber and actress Margo Stilley, Justin Thornton and Thea Bregazzi from Preen followed a Back To The Future theme. Models were dressed in futuristic Sixties-influenced mini skirts, dresses and beautiful trouser suits where the only structure was the peplum detailing. There was a definite contrast between hard and soft, and the palette, here once again, was predominantly pale. Beautiful broderie anglaise prom-style dresses were belted under the bust, and draped dresses came with cut-out backs.Proenza SchoulerThe Proenza Schouler girl is a lady next season. This was a grown-up collection in which hemlines dropped for a more mature silhouette. Coco Chanel-inspired tweed jackets – sure to attract a waiting list – were worn with knee-length skirts and Chanel-style pumps, and ruffles featured on slip dresses. A truly feminine collection.Ralph LaurenNavajo meets Victoriana seemed to be the look for Ralph Lauren next season, making for a strong show, while upholding the DNA of the brand. White crochet, crisp cotton and voile appeared on ruffled sleeves and poet's blouses, while the pale theme continued into off-white or tan, fringed, leather jackets. Fluid and dressed down, each look was worn with antique cowboy belts and tan ornamental chokers with Navajo cross-body bags. My favourite look was the faded green plaid cotton work shirt, refreshingly combined with a platinum lamé beaded skirt and antique silver woven chain sandals.Trends – Need to knowSeventies, a return to femininity, romance, utilitarian, peplums and an emphasis on the hips. Scarves, draping, simplicity, shorts, high waists and flares. Cleansing the palette, monochrome with a nod to colour blocking. Texture, layering, parachute silk.London Fashion WeekThe Independent fashion desk will be blogging from London Fashion Week at Follow us on Twitter at Twitter.com/indyfashionThe go-to dress of the coming season is a little pink number that takes over from this year's white frock (even though the latter remains popular). Cushnie et Ochs, Jenni Kayne, and DKNY were just three labels that presented their interpretations.A luminous orange is the other trend color come next spring: Charlotte Ronson, Derek Lam, Peter Som, Kimberly Ovitz, and VPL showed dresses of all shapes and lengths, but all colored in the sunny shade.Pattern-wise, all things tribal were again very common, with Alexander Wang giving them a typically sporty touch and even queen of simplicity Donna Karan not being able to resist the trend: her collection was inspired by Haitian tribals, and musician Wyclef Jean - one of the country's best-known activists - seemingly approved from the front row.Alexander Wang was keen to make a powerful statement with his show finale. Last season, it was a clutch of semi-retired supermodels; this season, nine bleach-browed blondes in white, croc-leather pencil skirts and knit shorts scattered across the runway and, as the lights went out, they glowed in the dark. A version of fishing wire held panels of clothing together as if they were the individual parts of a model aircraft still in their sprues, while knee-high, cut-out sandals gave a similarly tough and futuristic impression.Tommy HilfigerThe Tommy Hilfiger show was like going on a lovely date: it took place in the evening on the High Line – a disused rail track which has been converted to a verdant public walkway on the west side of Manhattan. Lanterns illuminated the entrance and the breeze provided welcome respite. It was also a fun date: slouchy silk suits with oversized shirts in rope or spot print, and patchwork trousers with Breton-striped hoodies felt youthful and easy. Lattice lacing on canvas dresses nodded to the holiday wardrobes of Seventies sirens Jackie O and Lauren Hutton.Victoria BeckhamVictoria Beckham has said that she would like each of her collections to surpass its predecessor, and that is exactly what is happening. She opened with a quartet of floppy-brimmed hats by Stephen Jones atop fluid looks in monochrome and orange, and the collection was made of luxurious fabrics. Crisp white shirts and tailored jackets added a previously untapped masculinity, while the signature bodycon dresses remained, and were made more sensuous with purposefully visible, built-in bras. Her collaboration with Manolo Blahnik was a great success: flat sandals and flat buckled shoes for the first time in a Beckham show.Diane von FurstenburgCan you ever have too much colour? The spirited combinations of prints and block colours at Diane Von Furstenberg's spring '13 collection reminded us that she doesn't believe so. Her joyful approach to living is infectious and the models smiled as they walked down the catwalk, as she did when she took her bow – picking up Google co-founder Sergey Brin on the way in celebration of a new partnership with the epic online enterprise.DKNYYoung designers could learn a lesson in consistency from DKNY: take a theme and investigate every possible nuance of it ad infinitum. Ideal citywear pieces included a loose denim jumpsuit worn with the top half tied around the waist, Bermuda shorts and a cool cap. Bumbags were practical for carrying your essentials close to the body – safety in chic.Marc JacobsThere was a sexy energy in the Park Avenue Armory on Monday evening. Audience members walked briskly to their seats knowing that it would start promptly and 13 minutes later, it was all over and they were left a little breathless. The show opened with mini-dresses so short that knickers were visible, and moved into bare midriffs and long key-hole dresses. The clothes weren't creative flights of fantasy, but rather very precise, Sixties cool. Details you'll want for your wardrobe included winklepickers, scalloped hems, bell sleeves, harlequin collars and stripes of varying widths and orientations.ThakoonCherry blossom and birdcages, silk duchess satin and crêpe de Chine in abundance formed the foundations of an unashamedly romantic collection at the Thakoon spring 13 show. Softness also came in filigree chiffon shirtdresses layered with cotton and light knits. Thakoon Panichgul's vision of womanhood as classically elegant but for a few small quirks remains consistent season on season, and he's capable of experimenting with new prints and proportions without losing his identity as a designer. Perfectly pleasant.Michael KorsStripes are having a moment. Having appeared at Marc Jacobs and Tommy Hilfiger earlier in the week, they also strolled down the runway at Michael Kors. His also came with a hit of the Sixties; and in Beano colours (although it's not confirmed whether Kors would understand that reference). Risqué pieces included a leather dress covered in metal grommets and skirts with thigh-high (or even higher) zip slit, and prettiness came from a digital cloud-print ensemble.Marc by Marc JacobsMarc Jacobs took us forward 20 years in 24 hours. After the Sixties at his main collection on Monday, by Tuesday we were in the Eighties. Scarves were tied around waists, necks and heads; bangles were stacked; shirts and jackets oversized. Each look was an amalgamation of layered separates, delightful together, but also credible apart – in particular, the high-waisted pyjama trousers with rolled up cuffs. It felt carefree and bohemian, as if models had picked up their thong sandals in Japan, their patchwork scarves in North Africa and were back in New York heading to a dance class.Calvin KleinFrancisco Costa was inspired by the beautiful Carolyn Bessette-Kennedy, who practically personified the label in the Nineties. Continuing an exploration of romance and femininity from last season – looking to the waist, the breast, as erogenous points of exploration through minimalism – this time, Costa also looked at shoulders and legs in strapless mini-dresses. The results are as captivating as Bessette-Kennedy was. Costa has a clear sense of this woman and an exquisite restrained experimentalism in construction and fabric, which made the collection compelling.Ralph LaurenLast season's Downton-inspired period costumes were replaced with a South American soap opera; Ralph Lauren knows how to have a good time creating characters for his clothes. Where shirts, ponchos, fringed shawls, cropped, embroidered boleros and suede jodhpurs began, red hot off-the-shoulder evening dresses ended. Lauren marches to the beat of his own drum, and wherever his personal narrative takes him, his fashion empire follows.Proenza SchoulerThe Proenza boys Jack McCollough and Lazaro Hernandez cited artist Gerhard Richter, tumblr, and images of swimming pools, waterfalls and protesters as their references. These were then manipulated with the sort of skilled construction that they are becoming known for. But this collection was bigger than the sum of its inspiration: notable were the leather/python mixes on sharp, boxy jackets, and perforated leather bonded to jersey separates. This was one of the most exciting collections of the week.Agata Belcen is fashion editor of AnOther MagazineAlso in brands, Isabel Marant's second line Etoile is making its Polyvore debut thanks to several celebrities (among them the Kardashian sisters) recently spotted in the designs. US retailer Wet Seal is also featured for the first time.Edit New York, which premieres in websites this week, deserves its name for its well-edited roster of hip New York-based designers, including Alexander Wang, Cushnie et Ochs, or Lutz & Patmos. Zara's increased web activity and recently added e-commerce have earned the Spanish clothing chain its first appearance in sites.Color blocking, now also making its way into , is one of the most persistent trends to ever have hit Polyvore, staying on top of the list. This spring's fascination with popping color, especially in combination with stripes, is very likely due to Prada's collection, which so far has been featured on 15 international magazine covers. Apart from that, inspirations from the 1970s (flared jeans) and the 1990s (knotted shirts) remain popular.Top brands01. MNG by Mango (no change)02. TopShop (+1)03. Balmain (+3)04. Antik Batik (-2)05. Wet Seal (new)06. Etoile Isabel Marant (new)07. Rag & Bone (no change)08. Isabel Marant (re-entry)09. Gucci (re-entry)10. Sass & Bide (re-entry)Top sites01. delias.com (+3)02. topshop.com (+3)03. net-a-porter.com (+5)04. brownsfashion.com (re-entry)05. lagarconne.com (+5)06. karenmillen.com (no change)07. editnewyork.com (new)08. zara.com (new)09. kirnazabete.com (re-entry)10. my-wardrobe.com (re-entry)Top celebrities01. Leighton Meester (no change)02. Rihanna (no change)03. Kim Kardashian (no change)04. Georgia May Jagger (+1)05. Blake Lively (-1)06. Olivia Palermo (-1)07. Elizabeth Taylor (+3)08. Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen (re-entry)09. Abbey Lee Kershaw (re-entry)10. Rachel Bilson (re-entry)Top trends01. color blocking (no change)02. embellished wrap bracelets (re-entry)03. knotted shirts (new)04. knee high boots (re-entry)05. studded gladiator sandals (re-entry)06. bomber jackets (re-entry)07. sequin tanks (re-entry)08. flared jeans (re-entry)09. statement necklaces (re-entry)10. boyfriend shorts (re-entry)Data collected on April 12.Polyvore, which lets users express their current fashion preferences in the form of collages, receives 6.5 million individual visits a month. Humberto Leon, who founded the concept boutique with business partner Carol Lim in 2002, said at the opening: "The idea of a pop-up feels really celebratory; it's special to enter London with a really curated point of view – it's about the merchandise, not the space itself."And there's plenty to get excited about, with hard-to-find stock from across the pond, as well as exciting, limited-edition British pieces. "Through the 10 years that we've had Opening Ceremony we've really been able to support younger designers – Alexander Wang, Rodarte, Gareth Pugh and Richard Nicoll – that are now becoming household names."Now it is the turn of a new wave of emerging designers, including London menswear names Christopher Shannon, Shaun Samson and Lou Dalton, as well as Fashion East's Marques Almeida and Maarten van der Horst among the hot tickets in Opening Ceremony's womenswear department. "The exciting thing will be that people will first encounter a lot of the brands here," enthuses Leon. "There's actually a lot here that people won't have seen before."The debuts are diverse and plentiful, ranging between archival Eighties pineapple prints from Reyn Spooner (the original Hawaiian shirt company, which has made womenswear for the first time at the behest of OC's founders, Leon and Lim), and collaborations with Adidas Originals, House of Holland and Norma Kamali. Downstairs there's a bookshop curated by Claire de Rouen, and the characterful Faye Toogood furniture that fills the shop is available to buy too."We want the store to be welcoming and democratic," says Leon. "So you'll see things from £2 to £2,000. There's a lot of stuff.The more you look around the more you'll see."Her marriage is wonderful, she's given up alcohol and from tomorrow she's hosting the nightly 'Strictly' spin-off show 'It Takes Two'New York wonder boy Alexander Wang, who had been nominated in three categories, in the end 'only' bagged the Accessory Designer of the Year Award, while darlings of the US fashion industry Proenza Schouler took home the most coveted prize for Womenswear Designer of the Year. The Swarovski-supported award in the same category went to Michelle Obama favorite Prabal Gurung. Michael Bastian and Robert Geller convinced the jury with their menswear designs.If it hadn't been for the International Award, there wouldn't have been any designing women represented as part of this winning roster, but Phoebe Philo was honored for her work at Celine in this category. She was joined by The Telegraph's retiring Hilary Alexander whose Media Award felt like a lifetime achievement award.The actual Lifetime Achievement Award, however, which went to the merely 48-year-old Marc Jacobs, was subject to much debate, and even the designer himself had stated previously that he's "not done yet." Just as controversial, while seemingly inevitable, was the choice of Lady Gaga as Fashion Icon, following in the footsteps of a much more conventionally fashionable Iman.Here is the full list of winners:Womenswear Designer of the YearJack McCollough & Lazaro Hernandez for Proenza SchoulerMenswear Designer of the YearMichael BastianAccessory Designer of the YearAlexander WangSwarovski Award for WomenswearPrabal GurungSwarovski Award for MenswearRobert GellerSwarovski Award for Accessory DesignEddie BorgoGeoffrey Beene Lifetime Achievement AwardMarc JacobsInternational AwardPhoebe Philo for Ce?lineThe Media Award, given in honor of Eugenia SheppardHilary Alexander, The TelegraphThe Founder's Award, given in honor of CFDA Founder Eleanor LambertHal Rubenstein, InStyleFashion Icon AwardLady GagaBoard of Directors' Special TributeArthur ElgortInvisible but obvious to the observer are their proper shoes, presumably heels, secreted in a handbag or tote, ready for a quick swap before starting a day of work. So many of us seem to have a "can't live in them, can't go without them" relation to our formal shoes these days.Meanwhile, in business news, there seems to be a direct correlation with the height of the heels and the profits trajectory of the company, when it comes to footwear brands. Jimmy Choo posted a 200 per cent increase in profits this January; Christian Louboutin is expanding by opening shops as far away as Brazil and Japan, and Kurt Geiger reckoned it sold ten pairs of shoes a minute in 2010 – with five-inch heels proving the most popular choice.As women buy into ever more towering styles, precluding the chance that the female foot should evolve Darwin-style, what are the developments in shoemaking technology to ensure that followers of fashion can still move from A to B without the use of sedan chair, or at least, a large handbag containing flats? Does a comfortable high heel exist, or is the idea much like "anti-wrinkle cream"– an impossible proposition, yet one too tempting to dismiss entirely?Jessica Bumpus of Vogue.com, speaks for many when she explains how she rotates her footwear to minimise aches and pains: "It depends on how much you vary them. I find if I wear high heels every day but change which pair, I'm fine and they're comfortable, but if I wear the same pair the whole week long, they won't be as comfortable. It's good to mix it up and give your feet a break from time to time." She also adds that she finds the safest bet is "either a wedge or a pair with in-built platforms".Helen Attwood [no relation], the buyer manager of shoes at Selfridges (whose London store houses the largest shoe department in the world, stocking everything from River Island to Prada), has noticed: "Shoes are getting higher and higher and more extreme these days. But the other side of it is that people tend to wear flats most of the time – because they are running around. Then when they do get into these skyscraper heels, they're not going to feel comfortable because it's such a huge difference. In a way, if you wear high heels every day then you're probably more comfortable than the rest of us who swap and change, because you've got used to it."As far as different styles go, wedges sell fantastically well, and they are very much in fashion at the moment, and people like them because they are comfortable while still giving you that height. Another comfy style would be a covered platform pump – again, you still have that height but, due to the platform toe, the angle your foot is placed at is not as steep, so the amount of pressure is less. At the moment we have Alexander Wang's summer shoes in. They are high but have so much cushioning and padding in the inner that you feel as though you are walking on clouds. Often you can tell whether a shoe will be comfy or not just by looking inside it."Another expert looking inside shoes is French shoe designer, Raphael Young. Unusually among designers with their own labels, he doesn't have one signature "look" but spans the fashion spectrum, from Barbarella-type boots in metallic leather at one end, to elegant court shoes at the other. He became obsessed with the craft of making shoes while watching his uncle Alexandre Narcy at work in Yves Saint Laurent's shoe studio, crafting each last [the wooden "foot" shape, which the shoe is built around] and heel by hand. For Young, the design of each prototype comprises two phases. "At first I just think about the style and it's the artistic phase, nothing else than the aesthetic and style. The second phase concerns the [coming together of] all the components and at this point it's all about comfort and practicability. It's constant: how can I increase the comfort and longevity of the shoes, how can I modify components and materials to improve the quality and comfort?"It led him to take out a patent on one particular range of his shoes, the R-Flex, which are smart high heels with a flexible rubber sole. Young said he first had the idea 12 years ago, visiting a shoe factory "that was manufacturing comfort shoes, almost orthopaedic shoes, where the owner explained that he was looking for a solution to make the shoes more flexible, which could give real comfort if the shoes could accompany the natural movement of the walk". Young pondered this question for years, and when his company received some extra investment they put it to use solving the old problem. "After trials and tests in the factory, I found the technical solution to make shoes as flexible and comfy as a ballerina [pump]. We patented it."Kay Barron, Grazia's fashion news and features editor, is a self-confessed high heel connoisseur, and one who is so well known for wearing "skyscraper" heels all day, has even written a first-person piece detailing the challenge of wearing flats for a week instead. Barron is enthusiastic about the R-Flex range. "The Raphael Young shoes are supremely flexible and comfy – surprisingly considering how high they are. I wore them for a whole day during London Fashion Week and there was no burning pain, or numb toes!" As an expert on high heels, Barron is precise about her shoe-buying tips. "It's not to do with the height, a wedge or otherwise, or the brand. It's all a question of balance and distribution of weight. A well-made shoe that allows your weight to be spread evenly will be more comfortable to stand in for longer, than one where the pressure is all on the ball of the foot. And believe me, I had to wear many toe-curlingly painful shoes before I found the perfect pair."Helen Attwood of Selfridges has one mitigating piece of news for those intimidated or otherwise unconvinced by the five-inch trend. "This season, as well as the extremely high shoes, the other story is completely flat flats, like loafers or brogues. There's not much in the middle ground but flat shoes are trendier than ever."There was lacquered leather, too, knee-high boots, supermodels and, as always, plenty of fur – on the streets as well as the runways. The wind cut through coats on the way to the shows on the pier: a quick, cold gust to catch your attention and sharpen your senses for the coming season.Marc JacobsThe shoes looked Pilgrimesque, apart from the rhinestone buckle and flowers; the calf-length skirts and A-line wool coats matronly were it not for psychedelic print. The construction of each ensemble was a triumph of the imagination at Marc Jacobs. Contained within the collection – leather and lace, print and sparkle, cropped, long and oversized.Calvin KleinKlein's models had their hair slicked down with a reflective sheen, and there were a few black, short-cropped styles also worn close to the head, reminiscent of early Yohji Yamamoto. Metal bands, worn as belts, gathered voluminous dresses in at the waist to create feminine shapes in a beautiful, minimal approach to romance, with simple evening dresses drawing attention to the hips and breasts.Marc By Marc JacobsStern caps and heavy boots became the upper and lower borders of a cathode ray tube within which all manner of prints flickered: florals, chequerboards, polka dots and tartans gave the feel of a cocktail party at a Russian military research facility in some alternative 1993, where the USSR had yet to fall. Comrade Jacobs' own federal union has never been mightier or more ubiquitous.Proenza SchoulerNew York has revelled in sportswear this season, with designers engrossed in knee-high boots and outerwear. At Proenza, narrow strips of the fabric were woven into a grid on skirts and dresses or cut-out to form an exoskeleton jacket. But what made this collection their own was the textures and detailing in their brocades.Jason WuNew York loves Jason Wu and, although he has yet make the same impact in Europe, tastes are warming to his style. He showed his increasing presence by sending down a veritable army of models and they marched to his tripartite vision of China: Mao-inspired uniform, the embellished shine of the Qing Dynasty and 1940s Sino-Hollywood.Victoria BeckhamAlthough there was none of the corsetry of previous seasons, there was so much constriction in Beckham's collection you felt short of breath just watching it: where there weren't tight double belts, there were stripes that looked like them and black tromp l'oeil panels that repainted the silhouette into an even more striking hourglass.Ralph LaurenOpening with the Downton Abbey theme tune, Lauren explored women's rights and appropriate antebellum modes of behaviour, dressing the lady as country gentleman. There was a series of professionals: the lawyer in herringbone tweed; a bowler-hatted banker; the doctor with a mini-alligator medical case, all adorned with caps and peacock feathers.Alexander WangWang's show commenced with a hullaballoo around South African band Die Antwoord and ended with cheers for the finale ensemble of models, which included Carmen Kass, Shalom Harlow and Gisele. The collection comprised fabrics that Wang had himself custom developed – lacquered tweed, waxed suede, vinyl, shrink-wrap jacquard knits – all cut with precision and compiled in a restrained palette.RodarteThe Mulleavy sisters draw deeply from film history, often titles that convey a sense of wonder and magical romance, such as The Wizard of Oz or Sleeping Beauty. Romance manifested itself in dropped waists and lace collars that looked like they were floating. An early 20th century look in the double-breasted coats, jackets and loose sleeves gave the collection a strong vintage feel.Donna KaranThirties gangsters and Marlene Dietrich were a welcome, flamboyant and cartoonish presence in Donna Karan's collection. Wide lapels and shoulders on reworked double-breasted suit jackets brought to mind urban fat cats. Citing architecture as one of her references, it's clear that Karan's well-documented association with New York City hasn't disappeared – merely re-imagined into one with Gotham City.Manhattan MomentsThom BrowneThis presentation was a Tim Burton-esque affair. Performed to the theme tune from Edward Scissorhands, it was an ode to 10 fictional women who had died for fashion. Ten suits lay in 10 coffins, but when the music started, they stood up and more models looped around them wearing a sculptural collection of voluminous proportions.Diane Von FurstenbergYvan Mispelaere is now in his second year at Diane von Furstenberg and the collections have become more and more compelling with each season. Particularly delightful, seen later at the showroom appointment, were handbags embellished with surrealist motifs such as eyes and keyholes.Photographs: Andrew LeoModel: Zhulin at IMGHair and make-up: Krystle G using Chanel S 2012 and Hydra beauty SerumPhotographer's assistant: Chloe CoatesStylist's assistant: Magda BrykLocation courtesy of the Barbican Centre; Too much knitwear is never a bad thing and depending on the thickness of the yarn, woollens can be worn at almost any time of the year. This crew neck is great all year round.Where: How much: £382. PrimarkThis delicious woven apple bag is worth every one of the seven pounds it costs. Sweet and fun, it will bring cheer to a tired wardrobe. Looks great worn quirkily with a full-skirted dress.Where: How much: £73. Marks & SpencerIce-cream colours can be slightly intimidating, but are flattering to the majority of skin-tones. This elegant vest looks great worn over skinny trousers or with an A-line skirt.Where: How much: £29.504. Jeff Banks for DebenhamsBetter known for his classic business attire, it's nice to see Banks's snappy pair of desert boots in the summer range for Debenhams. The stone suede has a very casual feel.Where: How much: £305. TopshopYou get some serious drama for your money with this stunning printed silk skirt from Topshop. It doesn't need much more than a simple black top and heels to make a great outfit.Where: How much: £506. UniqloUniqlo work magic with coloured denim. We love these wearable dark peach jeans. They look great with the current trend for pastels and metallics.Where: How much: £34.907. ToastBrights seem to be a staple of summer wardrobes. Maybe it's misplaced optimism. But this raspberry coloured T made of 100 per cent cotton would be a great purchase.Where: How much: £398. H&MKeep the spring sun out of your eyes with these classic round shades. Nineties styles are back and this nostalgic design will make you feel 15 years younger. A real bargain.Where: How much: £5.999. AsosThe simplicity of these chinos, by a brand called Selected, is the slim cut and the soft cotton. The detailing comes from the jet coin pockets and back pocket button fastenings.Where: How much: £3510. JoulesNot just for Christmas, the animal motif jumper is enjoying year-long popularity. Our favourite is this sweet design to go with bright trousers or a sheer midi skirt.Where: How much: £69.9911. ASOSA bag made from lightweight nylon is perfect for urban living. Front clasp fastening and a grab top handle make this ideal for carrying your daily kit around. It's waterproof too.Where: How much: £3512. NextMint green trousers can look great, and really modern. Unless you have a model figure, though, opt for a looser cut. These would look great with a cream or white top.Where: How much: £3413. Pink House MustiqueThis lightweight linen shirt is inspired by that exclusive Caribbean island Mustique. If you're one of the lucky ones flying to warmer climes this winter, this is great gear.Where: How much: £9014. ZatchelsThere are some great neon satchels and rucksacks around but why not invest in a classic black leather version and buy a neon T-shirt instead. This will still look great in 10 years' time.Where: How much: £8315. River IslandCord is usually associated with winter, so it's refreshing to see it used successfully in shorts. The tobacco colour is fairly heavy so for lightness of touch perhaps wear with a coloured converse.Where: How much: £2816. Boutique at JaegerEasy-to-wear checked blouse. Imagine an off-duty Audrey Hepburn in it with cropped trousers and ballet pumps. The colour would work with pale pastel greens or lemon yellows.Where: How much: £8017. CosSome might say that a black or brown leather belt doesn't cut the mustard anymore. This olive green skinny belt from Cos would be appropriate worn with a suit or jeans.Where: How much: £5018. H&MStrong prints were big on the catwalk and there are great versions on the high street. Try a cropped pastel sweatshirt or tucked-in sheer top with this bold, easy-to-wear pencil skirt.Where: How much: £29.9919. Marks & SpencerWaterproof jackets are always a sound investment. This blue jacket comes with a hood and zip pockets. Try with a pair of skinny stone chinos for that East Coast Preppy vibe.Where: How much: £49.5020. River IslandGet ready for spring with these bright yellow sandals. For a relatively non-scary way to wear neons, team with neutrals. I love these with grey jeans or a khaki green dress.Where: How much: £29.9921. TopmanThese shorts are a great mix of casual and smart. Aztec-inspired, they have a laid-back vibe and the turquoise material has a tailored feel. The turn-ups are a nice touch.Where: How much: £3022. TopshopFor those brave enough to wear a cut-away bra-top, this swan print number looks amazing. Wear it with a high-waisted skirt or peg trousers for a saucy yet sophisticated look.Where: How much: £2623. AsosThe "Made In England" brand does what it says on the tin. These handmade shoes in blue suede with brown leather punched detail will make your feet stand out in the crowd.Where: How much: £14024. WallisWhat's not to like about pyjama pants? The slouchy shape looks good with a loose fitting top or a more slim fitting vest. I would usually wear a wedge or heel to add an element of structure.Where: How much: £29.5025. TopmanThis shirt should tick all the boxes for buttoned-up City stuffiness but doesn't. Its wide stripe gives it a streetwise edge, And the vivid blue and red adds a dash of humorous garishness.Where: How much: £2826. TopshopThis unusual bull tie-brooch will go well with a buttoned-up blouse or oversized shirt. An inexpensive and quirky way to refresh the look. No one will guess it's from Topshop.Where: How much: £1527. GapChinos, a favourite for spring come in almost any style and cut these days. These coloured chinos from Gap are the perfect way of adding pazzaz to your look.Where: How much: £13528. Marks & SpencerWear this emerald green and sherbet yellow mineral print blouse with rolled-up chinos for Riviera-chic, or with a leather pencil skirt and killer-heeled ankle boots for a fiercer look.Where: How much: £3529. Red HerringThis cotton canvas bag is simplicity itself. The handles and fastening are in white while the main body of the bag is navy blue. The nautical trend at it most unpretentious.Where: How much: £3030. SessunThis is a very sweet soft cotton skirt. It works well with a slouchy knit, tights and ankle boots until it is warm enough to forsake the tights and opt for a silk vest or T-shirt top.Where: How much: £7531. Farah VintageThis label is renowned for classic clothing. The Rathbone is made from durable fabric. With toggles, zips and a hood, its has all you could need from a lightweight waterproof jacket.Where: How much: £10532. LibertyGive your wrist a Club Tropicana make-over with this cute printed fabric watch. Looks great worn with clashing prints or just a chunky knit.Where: How much: £5933. MangoH.E. by Mango is the Spanish retailer's male line. If you're looking for a bright pair of summer shorts then look no further. The colour will really make your tan legs pop.Where: How much: £21.9034. New LookSparkly fabrics have been popular all winter. This metallic loose-knit jumper is a subtle incarnation perfect for spring. Looks great layered up with pastels and slouchy jeans.Where: How much: £29.9935. ToastEspadrilles are possibly one of the easiest forms of foot wear. This navy pair from Toast are probably best suited for your holiday. Slip on and take a slow wander down to the beach.Where: How much: £2236. Lyle and ScottThese summery striped shorts promise warm weather ahead. Slim fit cut made from 100 per cent cotton. Perhaps wear these with a plain white fitted T-shirt for a classic look.Where: How much: £7037. FolkFolk create well designed and durable garments. Some of their T-shirts are simplicity at its best. Wear this vest with its striking patch pocket to look dressed up when dressed down.Where: How much: £4738. OfficeThese chic snaky boots look great with skinny black or coloured jeans and a white blouse. With the black nose and heel details, they look £100 more expensive than they are.Where: How much: £8039. French ConnectionA classic and modern fit is what we've come to expect from our chinos and these fill the brief. Will look great cuffed at the ankle, worn with a crisp white shirt. A look that never dates.Where: How much: £7040. TopshopLoosely draped and slightly sheer, this chiffon top is slashed down the back with a couple of button fastenings. Sophisticated and sexy, it looks great with grey skinny jeans.Where: How much: £3241. TopmanThis navy canvas bag is great for everyday use. The yellow square is a nice touch too.Where: How much: £3242. Dorothy PerkinsThe boat neck, three-quarter length sleeves and tapered waist make this is an extremely flattering dress. A modern version of the classic Fifties shape.Where: How much: £4043. Lyle & ScottAn old-school favourite. Made from the softest cotton, and reminiscent of an Eighties wardrobe staple, it has a laid-back feel. The bright yellow will work well with jeans.Where: How much: £8544. H&MCute and cheerful, these fruity earrings will put you in a good mood. There is a different pair for every day of the week (with Sundays for rest obviously). Would make a great gift.Where: How much: £2.9945. AsosThere is a glut of Aztec- inspired shorts and T-shirts coming this summer. With this busy pattern on your bottom half, a plain T-shirt on top will suffice.Where: How much: £3246. HobbsTry wearing this exotic feather print blouse under a long sleeved dress or jumper. The Peter Pan collar will transform your wardrobe. It also works well with rich green trousers.Where: How much: £9547. TU SainsburyThis belt is great if you like the combination of canvas and leather. And the navy and blue colours work well. A casual belt for a casual mood.Where: How much: £448. OasisYou could imagine Michelle Obama resplendent in this. We'd swap the belt for a tan or burgundy leather version. The emerald green and baroque print will turn heads.Where: How much: £6549. CosA full length mac can be cumbersome. A cropped version, like this from Cos is a great alternative. Stylish and smart, this can easily be worn over a suit jacket and shirt.Where: How much: £13550. Alexander WangThis dress from Wang's diffusion line T is worth stretching your wallet for. It is simple and elegant with beautiful detail. It would look great with the neon sandals.Where: How much: £108Her marriage is wonderful, she's given up alcohol and from tomorrow she's hosting the nightly 'Strictly' spin-off show 'It Takes Two'Venues during Fashion Week are paradoxically grand and imposing, while remaining cloistered and unexpected; many designers choose to show in churches, restaurants and civic buildings, and several this season have opted for smaller, more intimate and more couture-oriented salon shows. Either way, if you see a gaggle of cold-looking, over-dressed people in a side street, chances are you've happened upon a show.This season sees Vivienne Westwood installing herself at the Royal Courts of Justice – hers is a show that is always oversubscribed, with even the sleekest of fashion editors punching ageing punks and rowdy students in the face to ensure their seats do not get taken.Old Billingsgate Market will be taken over as the Topshop-sponsored NEWGEN venue, where many of the younger designers, including Michael van der Ham and Richard Nicoll, will stage their collections; last season saw the fashion pack sitting on the platforms at Waterloo's old Eurostar terminals to watch the NEWGEN shows.But the main agora is, of course, at Somerset House on the Strand, which is the headquarters of the British Fashion Council. This is where the biggest marquee is, and it plays host to an exhibition of brands throughout the week. Over 5,000 visitors are expected, including press and buyers – once again, it's invite-only, as the exhibition is essentially a trade show for those in the industry.The peopleIt's always fun to do a little people-watching at the shows, whether it's stunned silent gawping at, say, Jude Law – who last season turned up to support his girlfriend Sienna Miller at her Twenty8Twelve catwalk presentation – or sniggering at the hangers-on who get bumped off the front row when someone more important turns up.There's a whole host of London faces that frequent the shows, from the bright young art college things who turn out season after season, whether they have tickets or not, to the front-row stalwarts at Betty Jackson, who include Victoria Wood and Jennifer Saunders. Last season saw Kerry Katona on the front row at Giles, a collection full of kitschy, glamorous pink. She was overhead telling wolfish press afterwards that she thought the collection was "really nice". British fashion doyenne Twiggy is often in attendance, and this season will doubtless see Samantha Cameron under the spotlights, perhaps alongside her sister, who works for Vogue.Alexa Chung, Daisy Lowe and Pixie Geldof will be in front of the paps at Henry Holland's show on Saturday, as will his erstwhile muse Nicola Roberts of Girls Aloud. Holland's tickets this season come in the guise of a bingo card, the exclusive party invitation is a bingo pen – three guesses for the inspiration behind this collection...The showsThe style press fly in from all over, be they from the upper echelons of an American glossy magazine or down-on-their-luck fashion bloggers from the back of beyond. All are welcome – as long as you can blag a ticket.The pavements outside the pavilions crawl with street style snappers, such as Scott Schuman aka The Sartorialist and his wife Garance Doré, ready to pounce on anyone who has managed to assemble even the least coherent of new-season outfits. Ensembles range from the chic and modish to the eye-catching and macabre: previous favourites include the man who was dressed as a desk fan (complete with metal grill across his face) and his friend, who came as Robin Hood – yes, he had a bow and arrow.Meanwhile, magazine editors such as Anna Wintour, Glenda Bailey of US Harper's Bazaar and American Elle's Kate Lanphear rub shoulders with their British counterparts, as their assistants rush around behind them, clutching BlackBerrys and schedules, and shouting into phones.And then there are the online press and newspaper teams, who look a bit stressed because they have to file stories while everyone else is having fun.The menThe final day of Fashion Week is devoted to menswear – it's about time someone paid attention to the blokes, after all, and the day is now into its fifth season. The 14 shows and seven presentations range from the Topman Design show, to Cassette Playa's quirky, cartoonish street- and clubwear and E. Tautz's modern take on Savile Row luxury.It's a quieter scene than the womenswear days, but there's plenty going on, including Cassette Playa's homage to Ken (of Barbie fame) who turns 50 this year, and an almighty Topman party at exclusive club Bungalow 8 on Wednesday night.The partiesFashion Week wouldn't be fashion week without the parties that take place in and around the main schedule. These range from quiet afternoon teas (where Champagne is compulsory) in swanky hotel lounges – Markus Lupfer is holding a wonderland-themed tea at The Sanderson – to more raucous late-night extravaganzas.The style set will be elbowing to get into the Mulberry party at Claridges on Sunday, where Bloc Party's Kele Okereke will be DJing – but if your name's not down, you won't be going. Flash your new season satchel perhaps, or hope against hope that the doorman mistakes you for Nicholas Hoult or Fearne Cotton, who have already RSVPed.Fashion week parties are generally held at tightly guarded locations – members' clubs, for instance, or new nightclubs and bars. Monday night will be busy for the footsore and footloose alike, with Katie Grand's LOVE magazine and Jefferson Hack's AnOther thrashing it out. Grand is hosting an evening at Liberty with designer Alexander Wang, while Hack is taking over new Soho hotspot The Box to celebrate the magazine's 10th birthday.And for those whose invites (ahem) haven't yet arrived, the bar at The May Fair Hotel is serving fashion week-inspired cocktails, including the 'i-Martini' – created in homage to The Independent. Anyone can have one.The pressLondon Fashion Week's 65 catwalk shows are, of course, the centrepiece of the event, with press and buyers gathering as designers unveil their autumn/winter 2011 collections. But there are also 45 salon shows and presentations, which take place over six days. This season, for the first time, highlights will be shown on screens in some London Underground stations, so you can gen up during your commute.Clothes shown this week won't hit the shops until early September but Fashion Week is where editors and high street designers find their inspirations for the next season.Hot tickets include Burberry, Giles and Christopher Kane, all on Monday. Burberry will be showing in Kensington Park Gardens, a new venue for this season, and the show will be live-streamed onto the Coca-Cola screen in Piccadilly Circus, as well as 40 stores across the world. Previous shows have taken place inside enormous marquees, one season memorably with projected indoor rain, the next with the interior covered in the label's famous checks.Giles Deacon, meanwhile, eschews a vast and corporate image, choosing something more light-hearted: his shows have previously been inspired by Pacman and Celebrity Squares, and last season his catwalk featured turns from Kelly Brooke, Abby Clancy and Seventies supermodel Veruschka.All eyes will no doubt be on tomorrow's Issa show, too. The uptown label is a favourite with Kate Middleton and designer Daniella Helayel is slated to feature heavily in the royal bride's honeymoon wardrobe. Other names to look out for include the vibrant punkish duo Meadham Kirchhoff and the hip Swedish label Acne."We edit our content to show customers how to style an outfit," says Mo White, the site's creative director. "This is rare in the discount world and adopts the same approach as our sister site when it comes to selecting products and presenting them."Now the Outnet is taking a step out of the long shadow cast by its stablemate by launching its own label of wardrobe staples, called Iris & Ink. "Increasingly we are being asked for advice about how to wear designer pieces, our customers want to know how to work an amazing jacket into their wardrobes," says White. "Our creative team styles about 300 outfits for the website each week and we realised that every season there are a few key essentials that always sell out immediately. We created Iris & Ink in response to those questions, to create an essential pairing for every exceptional designer piece."It may not be the most original idea, but the 35-piece collection, which launches tomorrow, boils down to those fill-the-gap pieces that are on the Outnet customer's most-wanted list. "Our core customer is a busy, fashion-savvy professional," explains White. "The sheer convenience factor will lead them to choose Iris & Ink over established ones. The fact that she can now shop designer pieces and trend-led wardrobe essentials in one destination will have a huge impact on her shopping decisions."A silk T-shirt, trench coat, pea coat, skinny jeans, cocktail dress, biker jacket and Breton jacket are the pieces that fashion followers are exhorted to invest in time after time, in order to be timelessly stylish. "I love fashion," White says with passion. "I always start with a couple of big-ticket items – a pair of shoes, a bag, a coat and a pair of pants. I'll try them on with everything in my wardrobe from last season and work out what I still like and how to update it for the new season."White's shopping habits have played a large part in understanding what the Outnet customer wants, but also in what they can't find."My most enduring pieces are those you can find in the new collection – a pea coat, anything with a Breton stripe, cropped pants and a pussy-bow blouse. I used to buy a lot of vintage and mix-and-match from the high street, but as a working mother of two I shop mostly online and get it delivered to my office. I buy less and prioritise quality, colour, cut and items from designer labels.""We wanted to create a collection that exudes femininity and cool but also has a wearable quality," explains White. Keeping in mind the Outnet customer philosophy that spending less needn't mean settling for lower quality, the prices are sure to attract new shoppers from the higher end of the high street, as are the fabrics used – cashmere, leather and silk. And once they're through the virtual doors, there's plenty to keep them scrolling in the aisles.A collection of exquisite, long dresses, crocheted, floral embroidered, hand-quilted and some printed with wheat sheafs at the hem. Here, too, were coats, for the first time, high-waisted trousers and jumpsuits that will be on every fashion follower's wish list next season.Donna KaranGrace Kelly eat your heart out. So far this season there has been an emphasis on daywear – especially coats – and Donna Karan's show was no exception. This was a modern, elegant and sophisticated yet seductive urban collection full of interesting texture from bouclé mohair and tweed to fur-trimmed sleeves and head-to-toe shearling coats. The silhouette was long and lean and high-waisted, pegged skirts work well with moulded jackets. For evening, it was all-out Oscar glamour with sensual, floor-length dresses, draped jersey, rich lamé, sculpted satins embroidered with beads and iridescent silks.DKNYChic, easy separates and relaxed, oversized boyfriend jackets with contrast leather sleeves, knitted Puffa jackets and capes all gave this collection a Sixties feel. Here, too, was strong colour: vermilion, orange and fuschia teamed with ochre and beige. The final sequence featured all-black eveningwear: textured shearling coats atop signature little black dresses.Diane Von FurstenburgNew creative director Yves Mispeleare has injected energy into this famous American brand, while sticking to its inherent DNA. Diane Von Furstenburg knows what her customer wants: opening and closing the show with versions of her iconic wrap dress. The still prevalent Seventies trend, meanwhile, taps into her era perfectly: jumpsuits, sequinned diva dresses and printed pyjamas "like the ones I used to wear to Studio 54!" she cried. Entitled American Legends, after Millicent Rogers, Diane Vreeland (who was also an inspiration for Preen) and Gloria Vanderbilt, this collection is sure to attract new followers.PreenOne of the key trends to have emerged in New York this season is a more ladylike, 1940s silhouette: the pencil skirt is key and Preen's collection showcased it beautifully. Skirts were knee-length and either split at the front or back; trouser suits were also prevalent and embroidery on tops and jumpers was inspired by the Northern California arts and crafts movement. A sophisticated, even regal, collection.Marc JacobsWith typically starry onlookers – Fergie from Black Eyed Peas, Karen Elson, Jack White, Sofia Coppola and Whoopi Goldberg – Marc Jacobs eschewed the Seventies influence seen elsewhere and indeed on this designer's own catwalk six months ago now and said he was this time thinking of something more "strict and severe". There were hobble skirts so tight models walked geisha-style and polka dots everywhere: on fabulous wool, wide-legged trousers, beautiful knitwear and peplum jackets. The overall effect? Ladylike and sexy in the extreme.Victoria BeckhamVictoria Beckham gets more and more confident with each season. This latest collection moved her silhouette on from structured dresses – of which there were still plenty – to include a relaxed, looser outline. She showed coats for the first time, too, which look as though they will become as covetable as her recently launched handbag range.Theyskens TheoryOlivier Theyskens has definitely put his stamp on Theory. The gothic aesthetic prevalent in his career – and particularly at Rochas – was here albeit in a much more accessible way. Tailoring was strong as always, featuring slouchy jackets that are sure to sell out, long coats and skirts and trousers in all styles, from coloured cords to tweed wide-leg pants. Cable knit jumpers and sweater dresses looked easy to wear. All in all, affordable luxury at its best.The RowThe Olsen twins' hands-on approach goes a long way. Clothes this season were beautiful and understated – trousers and jackets displayed a strong knowledge of tailoring and dresses were sophisticated. There was more colour than there has been previously and also new this time around were bags, positioned – price-wise – right up there with Céline and Hermès.AltuzarraYoung designer Joseph Altuzarra's collection nodded to the early work of John Galliano: dresses with frayed edges, bias-cut silk slips worn with luxurious parkas and slouchy cardigans. This was looser, more sensual and feminine than previous collections – and it worked. Coats were out in force – always a reliable autumn trend – and shoes, tweed trenches, bomber jackets and capes all nodded to a Nineties inspiration.Alexander WangHigh-tech futuristic rocker Alexander Wang showed a collection that reflected the snow and cold here in New York City. There was fur and athletic scuba-wear, styled in the cool way this designer is known for. Asymmetric, knitted cape dresses worn with goggles opened a varied show; sheer blouses followed, with biker zip-pants contrasted against delicate chiffon tuxedo shirts, all showing off his excellent understanding of how the modern woman dresses.Marc by Marc JacobsMarc by Marc Jacobs is always an exemplary exercise in styling. With this in mind, models walked out in sunglasses and hats that reflected both the Forties and Seventies trends prevalent just now. Trouser suits came in cord and velvet and pretty blouses were matched with long skirts. The show had a modern, vintage feel to it and these pieces stand up just as well alone as they do on the catwalk.Alice & OliviaShowing in a glamorous suite in the Plaza Hotel, Stacey Bendet (the name behind Alice & Olivia) showed a collection based on burlesque and flappers. Shiny, sequinned dresses will have her followers including more than a few young starlets queuing up. The designer also introduced more separates, including high-waisted trousers (an autumn trend), and chic knitwear.2. Prada£2,450, 020 7647 5000The Prada collection is among the most feted of the spring/summer season, crafted in hyper-feminine fabrics and in colours to match. This Pyramide bag is just the thing to finish such a gentle look.3. Proenza Schouler£1,685, net-a-porter.comThe large version of this designer satchel is still as light as anyone might wish for, and will hold everything the modern woman needs to carry with her. This red version looks great with jeans.4. Pierre Hardy£1,075, Pierre Hardy, brownsfashion.comWhat's not to want about this brightly coloured backpack? It's unlikely that anyone carrying this modish design in the colours of the spring/summer season will get lost.5. Givenchy£1,400, selfridges.comThe Antigona is as practical a bag as it is lovely to behold. It's big enough to function as a work bag, easily holding notebooks, papers, make-up and more, and has top handles as well as a shoulder strap.6. Olympia Le-Tan£1,110, brownsfashion.comOlympia Le-Tan has made a career – and a business – out of crafting handbags that take their inspiration from the covers of books and films.7. Chanel£985, 020 7493 5040It's a basic tote in a great colour but let's face it, the selling point of this is its logo. It's cut in cotton canvas, with leather trim and a signature leather and chain handle.8. Yves Saint Laurent£1,660, ysl.comThis Yves Saint Laurent classic has been given a sporting makeover, crafted as it is in the finest leather punched to resemble Airtex. The finished thing is as light as the proverbial feather.9. Alexander Wang£980, Alexander Wang, thecorner.comWang is the toast of New York and cool girls will love to carry this great leather bag. It's big enough to fit half a life in and looks gorgeous in ultra-luxe, grey suede.10. Mulberry£995, mulberry.comThis "travel day" bag is very much like the bestselling Alexa but with gleaming gold hardware added for good measure. It's even cuter that way but still light, though, which is clever.GiltChic textured biker jackets, asymmetrical tops, and stylish dresses from young CFDA-nominated designer Alexander Wang are on sale from the September 7 on this website.IdeeliNew York label Just A Cheap Shirt, J.A.C.H.S for short, are re-inventing the basic button down: designs from the three-year old label go on sale on this site September 7. Belted ponchos and cable knit sweaters from slouchy chic label Vertigo Paris also go on sale on Ideeli on September 7.Editor's closetClothes and sunglasses from legendary fashion designer Karl Lagerfeld are available at discount prices from September 7 and don't miss the sale on shoes from the coveted Dior label starting September 10 on Editor's Closet.The OutnetA black slouchy leather shoulder bag from Jil Sander and a dark purple quilted suede clutch with detachable skinny shoulder strap from high fashion brand Miu Miu will be in Going, going, gone, an auction in reverse on Outnet. Jil Sander sale begins September 8 and Miu Miu September 10.Haute LookHuge discounts on flats on Haute Look this week. Up to 65 percent off shoes from Italian label Bernardo, makers of the famous 'Miami' sandal and 60 percent off flats, pumps and loafers from Dana Davis. Sales begin September 7 on Bernardo and September 8 on Dana Davis.Rue La LaFootwear from smart-casual brand Diesel goes on sale on this site on September 9.GiltIt's all about frocks this week at Gilt. Alexander Wang and Alice Temperley go on sale here starting October 25. Top picks by Gilt editors include a beaded empire dress from Alice Temperley. IdeeliGet your hands on one of Christopher Kon's leather handbags in a bright statement color or exotic skin. Co-lab, the more affordable sister brand to the Christopher Kon line, goes on sale here starting October 25.Rue La LaA massive jewelry sale starts here on October 26. Shop rings, bracelets, and necklaces from designers Anna Sheffield, Erica Anenberg, and Kenneth Jay Lane.Haute LookNo fall wardrobe is complete without luxurious cashmere pieces. Qi's knitwear has been featured on top TV shows like Gossip Girl and Desperate Housewives. Get shopping here from October 25. Also on sale this week, A & R cashmere scarves and shawls to top off your look.Editors' ClosetItalian footwear designer Giuseppe Zanotti goes on sale at Editors' Closet this week. Snag a pair of crystal-studded stilettos or dramatic pair of over-the-knee boots in suede or leather.In a presentation at a consumer conference, live-streamed on the company's website,chairman and CEO Glenn Murphy has announced that Gap is to close 200 of its 900 worldwide stores by 2013, and focus on modernising its signature look. He also admitted that Gap had not tried hard enough to attract ethnic minority customers in the US.In a masterful attempt at accentuating the positive, Mr Murphy described the brand's repositioning as "a huge opportunity ... to fill in with trend-right products ... and focus on new category development". Marketing will shift, he said, "disproportionately to acquiring new customers".The Gap, as it was originally known, first opened in San Francisco in 1969, masterminded by a businessman, Don Fisher, who died in 2009. The cotton and jersey separates it sold, along with denim and relaxed tailoring, soon dictated the look of the American middle classes. It was preppy without being stuffy – the name was suggested by Fisher's wife, Doris, as a take on the phrase "generation gap" – and it provided clothing for an emergent band of shoppers who didn't want to look like their parents had done at their age.This is still, broadly, what Gap aims for. A reliable source of practical basics and classic clothing, the American chain became a byword for relaxed modern casual wear. Perennial pieces from the store include chinos, jeans and white shirts, although recent design team changes and high-end collaborations have pushed the brand's offerings in new directions."We focused on the denim collection 18 months ago," said Gap's head of global PR, Anita Borzyszkowska, "improving the fabric, fit and details with the aim of making jeans priced around £40 comparable to jeans that might cost £200." Other recent directives have included a "black pants" capsule and a "perfect trouser" collection. "Gap is most successful when it finds its place within the season's trends," added Borzyszkowska. "The flare and the wide-leg pants are good examples. They are the sort of pieces that could appeal regardless of how closely you follow trends."Stacey Duguid, executive fashion editor at Elle, added: "[Gap] resolutely sticks to its brand identity, never veering too far into trends. Gap clothing is always instantly recognisable, which I don't think in the current climate is such a bad thing."The store has a history of successful designer collaborations too, such as dresses by Roland Mouret or a safari capsule by Alexander Wang. Last season saw the launch of a range with the Italian couture house Valentino, where signature Gap khakis were transformed with ruffles and zips. There is also Stella McCartney's on-going kids' collection – although pricey in comparison to other high-street childrenswear offerings – which remains a hit among shoppers.So Mr Murphy's remarks about a shift of focus and the closing of branches seem to have come out of the blue. They reflect changes affecting the fashion industry as a whole, with soaring cotton prices and diminishing zest for consumption.Against this, Gap has a broad demographic: although it focuses its advertising on those aged between 25 and 30, it has ranges for both newborns and adults. As a consequence, its customer base is much bigger than, say, Topshop or H&M."People have a loyalty to Gap," said Kay Barron, Grazia's fashion news and features editor. "They know what they're going to get. It's the fashion equivalent of Boots – trustworthy, friendly and sells all the essentials."Mind the GapAugust, 1969 Don and Doris Fisher open the first Gap store in San Francisco1973 Grows to more than 25 stores, including areas outside California1974 Gap begins to sell private-label merchandise1984 Firm stops selling all brand-name clothes except Levi's1986 First GapKids store opens.1987 First international Gap store opens in London1990 babyGap brand is introduced1991 It stops carrying Levi's and sells only its own Gap brand of clothes2003 Gap, along with 21 other companies, is hit with a class action lawsuit filed by sweatshop workers in Saipan. A $20m settlement is reached, but the firm does not admit liability2004 Donald Fisher stands down as Chairman, His son, Robert, takes over2011 Gap announces it is closing 200 storesThe pledge was made as the company said for the first time that it will hand over user identities if legally required.But in a speech at the e-G8 Internet forum in Paris, Tony Wang, head of Twitter operations in Europe, suggested the social network would accede to a UK court order to divulge names because it preferred to comply with local laws when illegal activity had taken place.Mr Wang said: "Platforms have a responsibility, not to defend that user but to protect that user's right to defend him or herself. If we're legally required to turn over user information, to the extent that we can, we want to notify the user involved, let them know and let them exercise their rights under their own jurisdiction."That's not to say that they will ultimately prevail, that's not to say that law enforcement doesn't get the information they need, but what it does do is take that process into the court of law and let it play out there."Despite the public statement by a senior Twitter executive it remains unclear if the social-network forum will hand over the names of people who used it to identify Ryan Giggs for using a super-injunction to prevent the publication of his identity as the footballer alleged to have had an affair with Imogen Thomas, of Big Brother.A statement tweeted by Alexander Macgillivray, Twitter's general counsel, did little to expand on Mr Wang's pledge to warn users when they were to be identified: "Our policy is notify users and we have fought to ensure user rights. Sadly, some more interested in headlines than accuracy."Under American law, especially with the constitutional rights to freedom of speech, it is thought that Twitter could simply refuse to give the UK courts any details unless ordered to do so by the US courts.Agreeing to comply with local jurisdictions would raise fears that Twitter would be willing to hand over the names of users to courts in China, despite that country's poor record on human rights and freedom of expression.Jimmy Wales, the founder of Wikipedia, told the BBC: "I do view it to being similar to the Chinese situation where they also cover up misdeeds of high-ranking people."But Mr Wales was confident that the authorities in the US were unlikely to try to force Twitter to meekly relent the courts in Britain because of the enshrinement of freedom of expression in the United States Constitution.Next for social networkingBooks, television shows and news will be the next subjects to become the focus of social networking, the founder of Facebook believes.Mark Zuckerberg said they would be transformed into "media experiences" similar to computer games already on the site. He told the e-G8 Internet Forum in Paris yesterday they were contenders for the next generation of social networking.The Bloglovin' Awards during New York fashion week recognized (Best Personal Style Blog, Blog of the Year), (Best Streetstyle), (Best News Blog), the (Most Original Blog), and (Newcomer of the Year).Moda Operandi - a new shopping site curated by Vogue's Lauren Santo Domingo - launches February 16, which will enable fashion fans to shop looks off US designers' runways. The move is heralded as a democratization of the industry since for the first time, it won't exclusively be professional buyers that decide what customers can buy. A 50-percent down payment will bag you a look from Alexander Wang's show - that took place February 12- in the site's first sale. Santo Domingo and her partner, Aslaug Magnusdottir, are aiming at bringing the looks to customers within 48 hours after a show.Asian American designer Derek Lam has designed an accessibly priced collection for eBay that will hit the auction site February 16. Vote on your favorite items, and the top five looks will go into production to be shopped online this spring.Following the launch of his first standalone store in New York, Alexander Wang has relaunched his website, whose shop now offers ready-to-wear in addition to the previously available T by Alexander Wang line. Models' faces were obscured in a mask collaboration project with performance artist Terence Koh, adding a 'concept store' twist to the site.Payvment, a Facebook app that lets anyone create a retail store on the social network, has unveiled a virtual shopping mall comprised of all the stores that use the app. The platform offers over one million products from 50,000 retailers.In other online mall news, denim brand Levi's has opened a virtual boutique on Chinese shopping platform Taobao. More than 200 products can already be shopped via the site, and the label plans to launch online exclusives in the future.E-tailer Shopbop has announced it will launch a shopping area dedicated to weddings on March 14. Dresses will include designs by Halston Heritage, Lela Rose, Notte by Marchesa, Max Azria, Temperley London, Alice + Olivia, and Calvin Klein, with prices ranging from $195 to $5,000.Hipster fashion brand Band of Outsiders has launched a blog for its Girl line, posting inspirations behind its collections, such as music, iconic figures, fashion editorials, and much more.The equally hip Urban Outfitters chain will sell its new bridal line online from Valentine's Day, February 14.US department store Barneys now has a new micro-site called The Window, which went live this week. Fed with daily updates, it connects labels sold in the store - Alexander Wang, Frederic Malle, and Munnu Jewelry are among the first ones featured - with editorial coverage, such as designer interviews.Fashion brands are increasingly setting up their own Tumblr blogs to reach their fans, with the most recent example being the web-savvy US designer Kate Spade. The new site especially focuses on the brand's signature color theme, but there are also unexpected gems such as creative .Model Ashley Smith, who is also the current face of Alexander Wang, causes an admirer to drop to the floor in one clip and gets enchanted herself by a most likely nice-smelling police officer in the other.According to a release, the new perfume will contain molecules that stimulate the hypothalamus, the sexual center of the brain, making it a "beautiful but deadly weapon of seduction" that will "ignite passions like never before."In fragrance speak, this will translate to an opening of mandarin and star anise notes, a heart composed of jasmine, gardenia, and (known aphrodisiac) licorice, and base notes of amber and vanilla - all packaged in a heart-shaped bottle complete with a cupid's dart.Watch the videos at and . Santigold has been increasingly venturing into the realms of fashion recently, having just designed a collection with urban shoe brand Vans.As part of an ongoing trend of recording artists premiering their new tracks in advertising, the video is set against an exclusive remix of Santigold's "Go."Watch the video at .Moncler's 'flash mob' of dancing models at Grand Central Station was without a doubt one of the most talked-about shows of the week.New York's wonder boy Alexander Wang has had a hell of a season, winning GQ's menswear prize and opening his first standalone store. His collection was one of the few real hits.One of the most anticipated collections each New York fashion week is that of Marc Jacobs, which again got raving reviews.Arguably the most fun of all New York shows each season: Betsey Johnson, who - much like Sonia Rykiel in Paris - insists on refreshingly extrovert models on the runway.Band of Outsiders released their models by ropes hanging from the ceiling.Victoria Beckham commented each look herself, reportedly earning snickers from the audience.Together with Diane von Furstenberg, she is the Grande Dame of New York fashion week: Carolina Herrera injected a much-needed dose of glamour.And while we're at it: Diane von Furstenberg topped most of her outfits with flamenco hats:The New York maestro responsible for the most spectacular gowns: Oscar de la Renta.Tommy Hilfiger's all-American look had a decidely 1970s feel to it this season.Michael Kors celebrated 30 years in business this season, showing his collection to everyone who 'helped and inspired' him along the way.Sidewalk catwalk auctionEnds September 3OnlineSome of New York's premier fashion designers have created mannequins to celebrate the city's fashion district. On September 3, these will move from the sidewalk to eBay for the public to bid on their favorite designs, with all proceeds going to New York charity Materials for the Arts. More information can be found at Mercedes Benz Fashion WeekSeptember 9-16New York, USThe biggest American designers, such as Tommy Hilfiger or Ralph Lauren, will show alongside fresh talent, including Prabal Gurung and Alexander Wang, when the Big Apple kicks off fall's fashion month.Fashion's Night OutSeptember 10InternationalThe global event, in its second edition this year, will again see designers and celebrities team up with luxury stores and mass retailers to get people shopping everywhere from Berlin to Paris and New York. Follow the organizers on for a constant stream of updates on events and promotions. London Fashion WeekSeptember 17-22London, UKJust one day after the end of the shows in New York, the London Fashion Week begins. House of Holland, Julian Macdonald, Matthew Williamson, Acne, Peter Pilotto, Erdem and Burberry Prorsum are some of the brands showing their spring-summer collections in London, considered the most avant-garde of the four big fashion weeks.Milan Fashion WeekSeptember 22-28Milan, ItalyAfter London and before Paris, the fashion crowd moves to Milan to look at the women's spring-summer 2011 collections. Expect great shows from the likes of Dolce & Gabbana, Giorgio Armani, Fendi, Gucci and Prada.Paris Fashion WeekSeptember 28-October 6Paris, FranceThe season of spring-summer ready-to-wear shows ends in Paris with legendary houses like Chanel, Jean Paul Gaultier, Balenciaga, Yves Saint Laurent, Sonia Rykiel, Maison Martin Margiela, Louis Vuitton and Christian Dior.  New York Fashion WeekFebruary 10-17New York, USAThe event kicks off the women's ready-to-wear season in the four fashion capitals (the other three being London, Milan, and Paris), the most important time in the fashion half-year. American designers including Michael Kors, Alexander Wang, and Calvin Klein will all showcase their collections.Bloglovin' AwardsFebruary 13New York, USAThe fashion community's favorite blogs will be awarded at the annual ceremony, praising the best in personal fashion, streetstyle, fashion news, and more. Votes are still accepted online.Fashion 2.0 AwardsFebruary 16New York, USANew Yorkers are taking digital fashion very seriously - case in point: another ceremony during fashion week that awards fashionable online projects. Is Burberry or Armani more web-savvy? Was Chanel's or Lanvin's video prettier? Which fashion PR deserves praise for their Twitter account? You decide.Michael Kors 30th anniversary showFebruary 16New York, USAThe US designer kicks off the festivities with a special showcase during New York fashion week - where he will present his new collection to all those who have been important to him throughout his career - that will be broadcast live on the web. He is also gearing up for the opening of a new flagship on the city's Madison Avenue as well as his biggest store to date on rue Saint Honoré in Paris by the end of March.London Fashion WeekFebruary 18-23London, UKFollowing New York's Fashion Week, London's event brings together British designers such as Paul Smith, and new talents like Christopher Kane. Issa London, the label who made the now-famous sapphire blue dress that Kate Middleton wore to announce her engagement to Prince William, is among those scheduled to stage a catwalk show. London Fashion Week will showcase both women's and men's collections.Mercedes Benz Fashion WeekSeptember 9-16New York, USThe biggest American designers, such as Tommy Hilfiger or Ralph Lauren, will show alongside fresh talent, including Prabal Gurung and Alexander Wang, when the Big Apple kicks off fall's fashion month.Fashion's Night OutSeptember 10InternationalThe global event, in its second edition this year, will again see designers and celebrities team up with luxury stores and mass retailers to get people shopping everywhere from Berlin to Paris and New York. Follow the organizers on for a constant stream of updates on events and promotions. London Fashion WeekSeptember 17-22London, UKJust one day after the end of the shows in New York, the London Fashion Week begins. House of Holland, Julian Macdonald, Matthew Williamson, Acne, Peter Pilotto, Erdem and Burberry Prorsum are some of the brands showing their spring-summer collections in London, considered the most avant-garde of the four big fashion weeks.Milan Fashion WeekSeptember 22-28Milan, ItalyAfter London and before Paris, the fashion crowd moves to Milan to look at the women's spring-summer 2011 collections. Expect great shows from the likes of Dolce & Gabbana, Giorgio Armani, Fendi, Gucci and Prada.Paris Fashion WeekSeptember 28-October 6Paris, FranceThe season of spring-summer ready-to-wear shows ends in Paris with legendary houses like Chanel, Jean Paul Gaultier, Balenciaga, Yves Saint Laurent, Sonia Rykiel, Maison Martin Margiela, Louis Vuitton and Christian Dior.Stockholm Fashion WeekAugust 16-22Stockholm, SwedenThe Swedish capital has lost many of its leading brands to bigger fashion weeks (e.g., Acne, which will be showing in London this fall), but remains a great talent-scouting playground.Rosemount Sydney Fashion FestivalAugust 23-28Sydney, AustraliaBrought to you by the same team responsible for Australian Fashion Week, the festival features ticketed fashion events for the public, showcasing Australia's leading designer brands and retailers as their collections arrive in stores throughout the city.Mercedes Benz Fashion WeekSeptember 9-16New York, USThe biggest American designers, such as Tommy Hilfiger or Ralph Lauren, will show alongside fresh talent, including Prabal Gurung and Alexander Wang, when the Big Apple kicks off fall's fashion month.Fashion's Night OutSeptember 10InternationalThe global event, in its second edition this year, will again see designers and celebrities team up with luxury stores and mass retailers to get people shopping everywhere from Berlin to Paris and New York. Follow the organizers on for a constant stream of updates on events and promotions. New York Fashion WeekFebruary 10-17New York, USAThe event kicks off the women's ready-to-wear season in the four fashion capitals (the other three being London, Milan, and Paris), the most important time in the fashion half-year. American designers including Michael Kors, Alexander Wang, and Calvin Klein will all showcase their collections.Bloglovin' AwardsFebruary 13New York, USAThe fashion community's favorite blogs will be awarded at the annual ceremony, praising the best in personal fashion, streetstyle, fashion news, and more. Votes are still accepted online.Fashion 2.0 AwardsFebruary 16New York, USANew Yorkers are taking digital fashion very seriously - case in point: another ceremony during fashion week that awards fashionable online projects. Is Burberry or Armani more web-savvy? Was Chanel's or Lanvin's video prettier? Which fashion PR deserves praise for their Twitter account? You decide.Michael Kors 30th anniversary showFebruary 16New York, USAThe US designer kicks off the festivities with a special showcase during New York fashion week - where he will present his new collection to all those who have been important to him throughout his career - that will be broadcast live on the web. He is also gearing up for the opening of a new flagship on the city's Madison Avenue as well as his biggest store to date on rue Saint Honoré in Paris by the end of March.London Fashion WeekFebruary 18-23London, UKFollowing New York's Fashion Week, London's event brings together British designers such as Paul Smith, and new talents like Christopher Kane. Issa London, the label who made the now-famous sapphire blue dress that Kate Middleton wore to announce her engagement to Prince William, is among those scheduled to stage a catwalk show, while Tom Ford will stage an intimate presentation of his new womenswear line. London Fashion Week will showcase both women's and men's collections.Milan Fashion WeekFebruary 23 - March 1Milan, ItalyMaestros Dolce & Gabbana, Armani, and Ferragamo will showcase their collections alongside Italy's first fashion ladies Versace, Prada, and Frida Giannini for Gucci at Milan's fashion week. The Italian fashion council, the Camera Nazionale della Moda Italiana, will also some of the shows.Paris Fashion WeekMarch 1-9Paris, FranceThe queen of all fashion weeks will conclude ready-to-wear show season with only the biggest names in fashion such as Chanel, Dior, Yves Saint Laurent, Lanvin or Balenciaga.Mercedes Benz Fashion WeekSeptember 9-16New York, USAThe biggest American designers, such as Tommy Hilfiger or Ralph Lauren, will show alongside fresh talent, including Prabal Gurung and Alexander Wang, when the Big Apple kicks off fall's fashion month.London Fashion WeekSeptember 17-22London, UKJust one day after the end of the shows in New York, the London Fashion Week begins. House of Holland, Julian Macdonald, Matthew Williamson, Acne, Peter Pilotto, Erdem and Burberry Prorsum are some of the brands showing their spring-summer collections in London, considered the most avant-garde of the four big fashion weeks.Milan Fashion WeekSeptember 22-28Milan, ItalyAfter London and before Paris, the fashion crowd moves to Milan to look at the women's spring-summer 2011 collections. Expect great shows from the likes of Dolce & Gabbana, Giorgio Armani, Fendi, Gucci and Prada.Paris Fashion WeekSeptember 28-October 6Paris, FranceThe season of spring-summer ready-to-wear shows ends in Paris with legendary houses like Chanel, Jean Paul Gaultier, Balenciaga, Yves Saint Laurent, Sonia Rykiel, Maison Martin Margiela, Louis Vuitton and Christian Dior.São Paulo Fashion WeekJanuary 28- February 2São Paulo, BrazilStarted in 1996, São Paulo Fashion Week has evolved into the most important fashion event in Latin America. Expect to see catwalk shows by major Brazilian labels like Ricardo Almeida, Reinaldo Lourenço, and Ronalda Fraga, as well as by luxury European brands like Chanel and Versace. The most anticipated events of SPFW are by far the presentations of sexy Brazilian beachwear lines like Amir Slama's Rosa Cha.Copenhagen Fashion WeekFebruary 2-6Copenhagen, DenmarkNorthern Europe's largest fashion event draws some 60,000 designers, buyers, and press. Coupled with its leading trade fairs CPH Vision, Gallery and the Copenhagen International Fashion Fair, the Danish capital is quickly cementing its status as a global fashion hub.New York Fashion WeekFebruary 10-17New York, USAThe event kicks off the women's ready-to-wear season in the four fashion capitals (the other three being London, Milan, and Paris), the most important time in the fashion half-year. American designers including Michael Kors, Alexander Wang, and Calvin Klein will all showcase their collections.London Fashion WeekFebruary 18-23London, UKFollowing New York's Fashion Week, London's event brings together British designers such as Paul Smith, and new talents like Christopher Kane. Issa London, the label who made the now-famous sapphire blue dress that Kate Middleton wore to announce her engagement to Prince William, is among those scheduled to stage a catwalk show. London Fashion Week will showcase both women's and men's collections.Better reconsider that Hervé Leger dress: according to a new poll, bodyconscious dresses scream 'promiscuous' to the fellas. Crop and corset tops, lace, and underwear as outerwear apparently enjoy the same dubious reputation among men - so basically all that's hip right now. ()Sienna and Savannah Miller star in a new video lookbook for their fashion label, Twenty8Twelve. ()Hermès has launched an interactive site called J'aime mon Carré (French for 'I love my scarf'), which shows you countless ways to tie the luxe label's famous printed scarves, much along the lines of Burberry's Art of the Trench portal. ()Diesel stays stupid: the denim label continues its popular Be Stupid campaign this fall. New ads have just been released and are as hilarious as ever. Will they, too, be banned in the UK? ()American Apparel's financial situation continues to look bleak. ()America's Next Top Model host Tyra Banks has made waves after enthusiastically lauding an incredibly tiny waist of one of her show's contestants. Banks had formerly made a point of including healthy-looking models and famously told the gossip press to "kiss my fat ass." ()Model of the moment Abbey Lee Kershaw stars in a video for Alexander Wang's first-ever campaign. Lenny Kravitz's daughter, Zoe fronts the print ads. ()There's still no sign of a cookbook, but supermodel Kate Moss will start selling her own jam. ()Also having a moment are top-handle bags, at the top of the trends list, reflecting the return to retro, classic styling for handbags that was seen in many of the Autumn 2010 shows. Another sign of fall is the new appearance of beanies, or knit hats, in ninth position on the trends chart.Top Brands1. Lanvin (no change)2. Rebel Yell (+1)3. Matthew Williamson (+ 2)4. T by Alexander Wang (no change)5. Cholé (+3)6. Proenza Schouler (no change)7. Alice + Olivia (re-entry)8. Steven Alan (-1)9. Preen (re-entry)10. Balmain (re-entry)Top Sites1. lagarconne.com (no change)2. stevenalan.com (+1)3. tarinatarantino.com (-1)4. luisaviaroma.com (+1)5. mytheresa.com (-1)6. heels.com (+2)7. uggaustralia.com (new)8. juicycouture.com (-1)9. shopbird.com (new)10. bunnyhug.co.uk (re-entry)Top Celebrities1. Blake Lively (no change)2. Audrey Hepburn (no change)3. Leighton Meester (no change)4. Emma Watson (+2)5. Kristen Stewart (no change)6. Taylor Momsen (+1)7. Ashley Greene (-3)8. Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen (+2)9. Lady Gaga (-1)10. Rihanna (-1)Top Trends1. top handle bags (new)2. biker boots (new)3. suede pumps (new)4. jeggings (-3)5. chain strap handbags (new)6. big bangles  (re-entry)7. blazers (-2)8. multi chain necklaces (re-entry)9. beanies (new)10. ballet flats (re-entry)Polyvore, which lets users express their current fashion preferences in the form of collages, receives five million individual visits a month.Lanvin and Rebel Yell stay top of the brands, while Australian swimwear brand Zimmerman and American label J Crew make their debut entries.Top Brands1. Lanvin (no change)2. Rebel Yell (no change)3. T by Alexander Wang (+1)4. Matthew Williamson (-1)5. Chloé (no change)6. Preen (+3)7. Alice + Olivia (no change)8. Zimmerman (new entry)9. J Crew (new entry)10. Anna Molinari (re-entry) Top Sites1. lagarconne.com (no change)2. stevenalan.com (no change)3. luisaviaroma.com (+1)4. tarinatarantino.com (-1)5. bergdorfgoodman.com (re-entry)6. heels.com (no change)7. shopbird.com (+2)8. idontlikemondays.us (new entry)9. uggaustralia.com (-2)10. brownsfashion.com (new entry) Top Celebrities1. Leighton Meester (+2)2. Blake Lively (-1)3. Audrey Hepburn (-1)4. Emma Watson (no change)5. Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen (+3)6. Kristen Stewart (-1)7. Taylor Momsen (-1)8. Ashley Greene (-1)9. Lady Gaga (no change)10. Megan Fox (new entry) Top Trends1. top handle bags (no change)2. biker boots (no change )3. suede pumps (no change)4. high top sneakers (re-entry)5. cargo pants (re-entry)6. faux fur vests (new entry)7. thigh high boots (new entry)8. beanies (+1)9. boyfriend shorts (re-entry)10. oversized cardigans (new entry) Polyvore, which lets users express their current fashion preferences in the form of collages, receives five million individual visits a month. Last year the trend for the retro glasses was set by Alexander Wang's first range of shades before other brands such as Ray Ban and Fossil followed suit. This year thick retro angular shades - once a favorite of style icon Audrey Hepburn - are making a comeback, adorning the faces of celebrities such as Annette Bening and Robert Downey Jr. at the Golden Globe Awards. Also in this week's charts, new entry Red Valentino jumps straight in at the top of the brands, Net-a-Porter climbs to the top of the sites and Kristen Stewart, winner of favorite movie actress at the People's Choice Awards, re-enters the celebrity charts.Top brands01.  Red Valentino (new entry)02.  A.L.C (-1)03.  Cholé (+2)04.  3.1 Philip Lim (re-entry)05.  Proenza Schouler (-1)06.  Alexander McQueen (re-entry)07.  Lanvin (-1)08.  Miu Miu (+1)09.  Sass & Bide (new entry)10.  Valentino (re-entry) Top sites01.  net-a-porter.com (+5)02.  lagarconne.com (no change)03.  barneys.com (re-entry)04.  ysl.com (re-entry)05.  kirnazabete.com (re-entry)06.  calypsostbarth.com (-5)07.  matchesfashion.com (re-entry)08.  theoutnet.com (-1)09.  my-wardrobe.com (new entry)10.  betseyjohnson.com  (new entry) Top celebrities01.  Leighton Meester (no change)02.  Blake Lively (+1)03.  Emma Watson (-1)04.  Audrey Hepburn (no change)05.  Olivia Palermo (+4)06.  Rihanna (-1)07.  Pink (-1)08.  Kate Moss (-1)09.  Taylor Swift (-1)10.  Kristen Stewart (re-entry) Top trends01.  bohemian (re-entry)02.  houndstooth (new entry)03.  nautical (re-entry)04.  ballet flats (re-entry)05.  cat eye glasses (re-entry)06.  peep toe shoes (re-entry)07.  graphic tees (re-entry)08.  aviator sunglasses (re-entry)09.  fringe bags (+1)10.  polka dots (-2)Data collected on January 18.Polyvore, which lets users express their current fashion preferences in the form of collages, receives five million individual visits a month.   Top Brands1. Lanvin (no change)2. Elizabeth and James (re-entry)3. Rebel Yell (new)4. T by Alexander Wang (+5)5. Matthew Williamson (-1)6. Proenza Schouler (-1)7. Steven Alan (-1)8. Chloé (re-entry)9. Zimmermann (-1)10. Vince (-8)Top Sites1. lagarconne.com (no change)2. tarinatarantino.com (no change)3. stevenalan.com (no change)4. mytheresa.com (no change)5. luisaviaroma.com (re-entry)6. bergdorfgoodman.com (re-entry)7. juicycouture.com (+7)8. heels.com (-1)9. zimmermannstore.com (-4)10. calypso-celle.com (no change)Top Celebrities1. Blake Lively (+1)2. Audrey Hepburn (-1)3. Leighton Meester (+2)4. Ashley Greene (no change)5. Kristen Stewart (-3)6. Emma Watson (no change)7. Taylor Momsen (no change)8. Lady Gaga (no change)9. Rihanna (no change)10. Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen (re-entry)Top Trends1. jeggings (re-entry)2. peep toe booties (re-entry)3. pencil skirt (re-entry)4. plaid shirts (re-entry)5. blazers (re-entry)6. lace up boots (re-entry)7. plaid (re-entry)8. cocktail rings (re-entry)9. one shoulder tops (new)10. boyfriend jeans (re-entry)Polyvore, which lets users express their current fashion preferences in the form of collages, receives five million individual visits a month.If this won't get you into spring mode, nothing will: Banana Republic takes you on a road trip.New model on the block Ashley Smith features alongside DJ Diplo in Alexander Wang's infectious spring campaign video for his T. line, which is set against one of Diplo's tunes.The promo video for America's Next Top Model's 16th (!) season is out.Watch Lou Doillon and Jessica Joffe play the jungle drums in Vanessa Bruno's latest fashion short.Keira Knightley stars in Elle's cover shoot wearing Tom Ford's new women's collection. According to unconfirmed reports, the actress has signed on to represent the line for the coming six years.Photographer Amber Gray's video to go with Marie Claire China's February issue is guaranteed to take you to a fashion wonderland.Director Paul de Luna has released a beautiful short film for Blank Magazine starring model Solange Wilvert.StyleStalker's video to promote its latest collection is called "The Beautiful and the Damned."Video lookbooks are the new thing in fashion, and there has rarely been a more charming one as this clip by hat label Yestadt Millinery.Alexander Wang was named GQ's Best New Menswear Designer this week - see the Asian American designer accept his oversized check, saying something maybe a teeny bit inappropriate.Irina Shayk, model girlfriend of soccer player Cristiano Ronaldo, found herself on the cover of Sports Illustrated, revealed at "The Late Show with David Letterman" on February 13. She visited The Today Show the following morning - see both videos at the link below.Transsexual model Lea T. made her eagerly anticipated appearance on Oprah this week, talking about the process of changing her sex and how that affects her work in fashion.Director Michael Palmieri has documented a fashion blogger's life during fashion week with a little help from Norwegian model turned photographer Hanneli Mustaparta.More blogger power comes courtesy of Nowness, which followed street style photographer Yvan Rodic, aka The Facehunter, around New York City.Levi's released a charming Valentine's Day-inspired video to promote its collaboration with Opening Ceremony.Another brand has worked together with the famous New York store: Maison Martin Margiela presented its wearable collection of transformable pieces during fashion week.And the final of Opening Ceremony's clever moves this week: an interview with W magazine's editor-in-chief Stefano Tonchi at his offices.Fast retailer Esprit has released a cheerful ad for its new him-and-her fragrance duo Jeans Style.See more fashion fragrance fun in this newly released spot for DKNY perfumes, starring real-life couple Anja Rubik and Sasha Knezevic.In the runup to Milan fashion week, which kicks off September 21, fashion fans are getting excited about Wang's latest coup: the hip New York-based designer will honor the Italian city's famed White trade show with his White Pony Rocco Bag, made exclusively from lamb and pony hide for Milanese store Antonioli (where it launches officially on September 23) and London's Selfridges department store.Meanwhile, another Milan shopping constant is making headlines this fashion week: 10 Corso Como, the city's iconic concept store founded by Carla Sozzani, is throwing special events for its twentieth birthday. If you're in town, stop by to visit its gallery, bookshop, or restaurant, and be sure to experience the best in cutting-edge shopping, paralleled only by the likes of Colette in Paris or London's Dover Street Market.The most star-studded event of Milan's fashion week, however, will again be the amfAR gala on September 23: the Foundation for AIDS Research has invited celebrities including Heidi Klum, Eva Herzigova, and Bar Refaeli to raise awareness of the disease.  Archie's favourite T-shirt is apple-green with tree roots growing down from the neckline. So when he wears it, his neck looks like the trunk and his head is the leaves. It is also riddled with holes. These I can forgive – I have a penchant for deconstructivist designers myself, you know – but I simply can't understand why anyone would want to dress as a tree. He wore that T-shirt on our first date, though neither of us knew it was our first date at the time, so I can't get cross about that.Actually, Archie has great taste and he does appreciate the finer things. It's just that, combined with his preference for not making an effort, his great taste doesn't often get a moment to shine.He can be vain, but only when he can be bothered to be. This makes for interesting outbursts about twice a year when Archie realises he has only one pair of trousers, or that he is wearing a T-shirt he doesn't even like. It's like when the dormouse in Alice in Wonderland wakes up to make a pronouncement. When this happens, I gently suggest that we go to the sort of shop I would approve of and buy him a new version of whatever it is he has taken sudden pique against.This means, brilliantly, that he has a limited wardrobe of incredibly nice clothes, which I am training him not to leave on the floor or public transport. He owns a few things that make me shudder, but they don't tend to leave the house any more. I achieve this by staring at the offending garment till he takes it off.Left to his own devices, Archie's style is what I would call Rompersuit Minimal. That is, he likes clothes in plain and block-coloured separates that make him look like a big toddler. I think this is adorable, but have encouraged more navy, black and grey (rather than tomato-red and pistachio-green) so that people take him seriously. All in all, Archie's tastes reflect the jolly individual he is, but he errs on the side of classic and formal rather than "street". Thank god. He doesn't wear jeans because he doesn't like them – a judgement he came to on his own, without me having to point out they weren't really his "thing". And he looks great in a shirt, as he has lovely forearms.As for my personal style, I do feel a bit sorry for Archie. I think he'd like it if I wore frilly dresses in nice colours or had a haircut that didn't scare people. Sometimes I show him clothes that I've bought or am going to buy and he makes a little face that almost breaks my heart. He's stopped pointing out that everything I own is black, loose-fitting and drapy, but you can see it in his eyes that he'd rather it was pink, short and tight.Harriet Walker is a fashion feature writer and columnist for The New ReviewArchie's story...Basically, I would like to look cool, but I would like to pull that off without appearing to make an effort, and I am kind of willing to put in an extra effort to achieve that effect. The idea is to appear to have bought (reasonably priced) clothes that don't look terrible, completely by mistake. And, OK, sometimes the difficulty of achieving this goal means I end up owning only one pair of trousers. But that's not because I don't care! It's because I care too much!Going out with Harry has taught me that I'll never pull off my masterplan – because doing so is impossible. No one looks effortlessly cool to people who actually know what cool is. This realisation, coupled with Harry's not-as-subtle-as-she-thinks attempts to steer me in what she deems the right direction, means I now own some items of clothing that might lead people to confuse me with someone who didn't mind people thinking he gave a damn.I bristle at the intervention a bit, since she puts her fingers in her ears whenever I try to explain how percentages work, and I don't see why I should be re-educated if she won't be. But it must be admitted that some of the changes are seismic. So, now I have this shirt with a shooting patch on it. I don't know what it's there for, as I've never been shooting. I do know it'll make a lot of people think I'm a div. The trouble is: I really like it.Spending a lot of time with someone who works in fashion when you are a civilian has this discombobulating effect. You stop asking questions like: are there really people who think a jacket is worth £1,700? And where are that man's socks?Some you stop asking as you realise you aren't going to get a good answer. Some you stop asking as you realise the whole point is the madness. Mostly, though, you stop asking as you realise through others' tiresome repetition that your snotty little query is actually really unoriginal, and based on a mistaken premise. Probably that's the main thing I've learnt from going out with someone in fashion: people who know even less than I do talk an awful lot of rubbish about it.The other big thing I've learnt: the experts don't have access to some secret taste vault. They just pick the stuff they like – with a more judicious eye, a better sense of how the thing will hang or whatever, but still just stuff they like. I'd always assumed there was more science to it. Then I realised Harry's favourite shoes have mouse faces, and her all-time most-desired object is a handbag that looks like a dinosaur. That made me feel a bit better about the trousers situation.Archie Bland is Saturday editor of The IndependentThe singer Katy Perry went trad Indian for her wedding to the comedian Russell Brand last month, but sophisticated Indian women want to be like her before the makeover. Reena, a Mumbai make-up artist I spoke to is scathing. "Silly girl, Katy, going for retro like that. Elephants and garish colours - really, how low class! Makes us look so backward. Really, don't they know we are modernising? Our designers and models could be on catwalks in Paris and Milan now. We got the message." And how.Student Mika Bhatia, 21, a Californian of Indian origin says urban India is cutting off from its own history and ways of life recklessly and hastily: "Fifteen years ago the American influence was absent and women would dress in their traditional clothes, look great. Now it is all about Western clothes. It's sad. It's happening so fast. I notice it every time I go back." You can see similar trends in other developing nations and emerging markets. Globalisation shrinks the world in more ways than we think.Sophie Kafeero was my roommate at university in Uganda, a wonderfully vivacious African woman with a curvy body, pursued by male students. "It wouldn't happen today she tells me. Young women who want to be popular 'showcase' girlfriends are skinny, have to be." One young woman at a local internet café so didn't want to be like her large mother, she has become anorexic. Quacks offer Chinese potions to get weight off. Business is booming.Ugandan British solicitor Jennifer Nyeko Jones confirms these trends: "The old posters are slowly fading – when large women were admired because it meant they were living well. Western men who go to Africa looking for girls are bringing this idea too. African men are not asking for it. Gyms are now everywhere, taking the place of popular local beauty parlours."Until 2000, no African woman had ever won Miss World, mainly because the nations selected big lovelies with sassy walks, like the fictional lady detective, Precious Ramotswe, of Alexander McCall Smith's Botswana novels. Then in 2001, a Western scout found the Nigerian Agbani Darego, tall, slim, small nose, large eyes, shiny skin. She was duly crowned and became the new ideal beauty. AIDS is known as the 'slim disease' across the continent. Now another slim disease has arrived.Elsewhere the demand is for altered features. South Korean women have their eyes de-orientalised for $800. In Singapore the men too opt for surgery, like the stylist Alvin Goh, who says he now fits better into the fashion industry. More nose jobs are done in Iran than any other country on earth. In his project 'Love Me', about the global beauty industry, the British photographer Zed Nelson last year raised the spectre of a "eerily homogenised" world, dull and samey like a prairie.Along with goods and services, neuroses are also being exported, from us in the West to them in the rest of the world. In the age of exploration Europeans unknowingly introduced their diseases into populations which had no immunity to protect them. The viruses now transmitted abroad are carried on the backs of unbridled consumerism and free enterprise.We need to face up to what that has done to our own societies and debate the ethics of the economic model that creates misery and dissatisfaction and cashes in on it. And then ask ourselves by what right we inflict the same and worse on other civilizations.Western women are programmed and controlled by the peddlers of physical perfection even though from time to time we like to imagine we have pulled ourselves free. Take Christina Hendricks, the stupendously voluptuous Joan Holloway in Mad Men, apparently the nemesis of zealous body regulators who only exalt females with lovely bones and small, pert, boobs. Hers are prodigious knockers, and then there's the door-sized bum and that animal walk, inviting and yet mean. Propping her up and out, though, are engineering miracles and feminine suffering we can but imagine. Fashionistas are ordering corsets with padded seats from Rio; Prada frocks pay homage to her shape and Esquire crowns her the 'best looking woman in America.' The equalities minister Lynne Featherstone believes the actress is a 'fabulous' role model and is setting up discussions with people from the fashion and media industries to get them to change models from little to large and boost female confidence. But for these merchants small is bountiful, brings in mega profits. Women with meat on them are unsightly, no good as bait. True, public effusion breaks out seasonally when, on TV, Nigella invites millions to drool over her puddings. Beth Ditto and Ruth Jones from the popular series Gavin and Stacy, and dear old Anne Widdicombe are fat and proud but the appeal for most is freakish. The idolatry of Hendricks too is more hope than expectation. Like a modern day Botticelli maiden, she rises out of the sea, briefly, before going under again.Upholders of beauty exploit the inadequacies of a weak and needy post-modern society that must be told what to be. The exceptions above can't overturn the rules. Smart, successful, aspirational people are lean or must try to be.The scale and penetration of such messaging in modern times is unprecedented. Academic Kate Fox of the Social Issues Research Centre warned way back in 1998: "Advances in technology has caused normal concerns about how we look to become obsessions... we have become accustomed to rigid and uniform standards of beauty...on TV billboards and magazines, we see 'beautiful people' all the time, more often than members of our own family, making exceptional good looks seem real, normal and attainable."For the comedian and writer Arabella Weir this trickery leads to perpetual dissatisfaction: "The celeb culture holds up the thin look, rarefied and glamorous women and at the same time it invites us to see them as ordinary - we can have a life just like them. See Cheryl Cole? We can buy copies of her shoes and be her." Except we can't.You could argue that every age has beauty prototypes and evanescence is the handmaiden of capitalism. Women have been made to conform to templates within all social systems. The horrendous corsets of the Victorian era broke their bodies and girdles of the Fifties severely controlled the feminine form. Then the corsets became mental. Weir's poignant new book, The Real Me Is Thin describes how her parents, both academics, believed girls had to be thin, "to please men, to be fantasised about." The child was forbidden pudding, the extra potato. Her mother said watching Arabella eat was like having hot knives poked into her eyes. Most young woman interviewed for her book confessed they would not have dessert on a first date. Gluttony puts men off, they fear.However, even until the late Nineties, the idea of beauty was not squeezed into one thin tube. Stars could still came in different shapes and sizes. The supermodels of the 1980s were strong-looking and broad-shouldered. Before that, Audrey Hepburn and Twiggy were thought stunning, so too Ava Gardener, Liz Taylor, Sophia Loren and Marilyn Monroe. In 2010, even the shapely Liz Hurley seems too fleshy; model Lara Stone (size 8) is thought daringly "curvy" and dream girl Cheryl Cole has melted down to size zero, the official size for the young, female and lionized. Kareena Kapoor is only following the new cosmopolitan aesthetics.Thousands of years ago, Plato tried to codify facial attractiveness and, since then, researchers into beauty have found that symmetry and certain features have universal appeal. But to offset homogeneity is that other evolutionary imperative - variety. In his Descent of Man, Darwin asserted: "It is certainly not true that there is in the mind of man any universal standard of beauty with respect to the human body. It is, however, possible that certain tastes, in the course of time, become inherited."Anorexic chic has gone way beyond inherited taste; it ensnares millions, imperils the future itself. Intelligent women feel caught in the vice. As Mika Bhatia says: "There's such an obsession with being skinny. I wish I could say that I am removed from all of that but I don't think I am. I have always felt I had to work on my appearance and stay thin even though I know what can happen. A close female relative who was at UCLA has developed a eating disorder." Bhatia's family are the new globetrotters, with the gain that brings and tragic losses too.Dutch literature undergraduate Mia De Graf, 19, grapples with the same dilemmas: "It's so mundane, having this single idea of beauty across the world, also so detrimental to our mental health. I am never repulsed when I see old paintings of women with larger figures, but it is weird because now, you think, someone like that should go Weightwatchers. Take the Rossetti painting Lillith, she is absolutely beautiful but today her figure is too full to be beautiful."Maria, 20, a nursery school assistant, daughter of Greek Cypriot migrants, who looks like Bridget Jones, is so sick of being on diets she is on anti-depressants instead: "How does Renee Zellweger get all that weight off and I can't? I have even written to her to ask. I hate myself, just a fucking failure. Look! Even my hands are fat. I can't wear a thong - my tush is too fat." Her nails are bitten right down and bleeding. Such deep misery in one fresh and lovely as a pink peach. A poet might once have written about her bloom, but such beauty has no place in our times.These distorted values are dysphoric for all women. For British Asians, these images had not, until recently, infected our eyes, nor narrowed our tastes. There is among us an abhorrent acceptance of skin colour hierarchies in which light is best. But on the whole, we managed to avoid the brainwashing. The models and actresses didn't look like us so we could ignore them. Not any more.Soni, a teenage British Asian girl, whose name means lovely, can't bear to look at herself. Alexa Chung struts through her dreams. Her mother fears her daughter is going mad. Only as mad as most other girls of her age: "Why can't she like herself? At 48 I think I look good, little fat maybe, but so what? Even my mother likes her face. But not Soni, my rose, born here. In my village back home, I looked in the rivers and thought my face was so pretty. Soni says she will have operations one day." Many of our daughters are in similar crises.These are momentous and dangerous cultural shifts, warns psychotherapist Gabrielle Rifkind: "Pressure on women as to how they should look came from different forms - from family, partners and friends. Now, it is the constant bombardment from the media and beauty industry, and this leads to a reduction in their ability to be independent of thought and creative in their own forms of self expression - the autonomy of the mind. The sexualisation of their image, expressed by very tight clothes and exposure of the body has accentuated a deep experience of alienation from the body, as expressed in rapid increase of anorexia and obesity."A decade ago, writer Naomi Wolf foresaw the coming blight in her seminal book, The Beauty Myth. She was subjected to extraordinary vitriol for exposing the dark side of the beauty business. She lost; they won. The most unachievable image of pulchritude are pressed it into female psyches so they spend and cry. Natasha Walter, author of Living Dolls, a book on young women today, admits feminists should have been more vigilant: "I used to be blasé about beauty myths. It was the concrete stuff that mattered - jobs equality and all that. Now I can see how these industries fed into insecurities, spread a punishing view of what it means to be aspirational, the idea of failure. Its impact is huge." Especially, she says, among bright, ambitious girls in sixth form colleges. When she was young, "You could choose your persona and style. It was cool to look as if you weren't trying too hard, to be eccentric." She did find that contemporary black women were happier with their bodies and own individual choices. (Good hair for them, though, as Chris Rock's 2009 candid film of the same name showed, is straight and light, and many go through hell to get that look)Similarly, a study carried out in 2002 (Maya Poran, Sex Roles, Vol 47) compared the self images of Latin, black and white women. Although all groups agreed on what is thought to be perfect – white, slim, tall, straight noses - black women did not let that affect their self esteem. White and Latino women in contrast felt they did not match up.Some emerging economies seem frightfully keen on those manufactured images of perfection. Nonita Karla, editor-in-chief of Elle India is delighted that her readers want to join the dubious club: "Indians have a more international concept of beauty," she says, "And we are now more in sync with global views and values, now it is an established fact. There is a global standard of beauty which is very western influenced, but local ideals live on, side by side."Geoffrey Jones, author of The History of the Global Beauty Industry is less blasé: "The globalisation of mega-, celebrity- and luxury brands provides compelling evidence of the 'flattening' of the world. These brands are the carriers of the latest trends, which companies now seem to be able to spread around the world, regardless of cultural traditions, ethnicity or income levels." This latest rush carries on from the periods of industrialisation and empire when white beauty norms were transplanted to colonised lands. Before then, says Jones, "Human societies had their own beauty ideals which differed sharply from one another."A scientist who asked to remain anonymouse tells me his famous cosmetic firm has a grand plan: "Like tobacco companies they are going hard for third world markets, creating a dependent consumer class, gullible enough to believe the slick campaigns and polished lies. It makes me sick." Old tastes cannot survive such determined onslaughts.I loved the old Bollywood actresses, graceful, bosomy and wide with soft bellies. With saris you cannot corset or hide much, nor did they try. Age did not bother them either, stars like Meena Kumari, Rakhi, Waheeda Rehman. To many young British women interviewed for this article the actresses are 'gross', 'overweight', 'outdated'. Most urban Indians would concur. Such a terrible shame that, especially in an old land which we know, from cave sculptures, paintings and the erotic Kama Sutra, celebrated the infinite diversity of the Indian female form.In her book Images of the Modern Women in Asia, Shoma Munshi writes: "Up until the 1980s it was fine to be well rounded and voluptuous and films and advertisements of the time reflect this. ...[now] the Indian cinema and adverts reflect the arrival of the perfectly sculpted body to meet exacting international standards." It is, she believes, to do with a vast and growing middle class (125 million so far) who "swing between their Indian traditions and an internalised transnational identity more in keeping with global lifestyles".And as with Starbucks, the reach is infinite, though some are managing to resist the lure of the west. Just. In parts of Africa and Arabia female beauties can have big hips, bellies and breasts. The pernicious word 'perfect' has not yet entered their lexicon. I asked Jemima Khan if she saw middle class Pakistan succumbing: "The country is more conservative than India, particularly in terms of fashion and dress. The shalwar khameez is designed to conceal a woman's figure. My sister-in-law, for example, hid her pregnancy until a week before giving birth. I couldn't tell even though I was living with her. Having said that, I interviewed a top model/actress there recently and yes she was minute, the Western ideal." Jemima's friend Suhair Khan believes change is unavoidable: "India is much more affected by globalisation but girls in Pakistan are now becoming conscious of being the 'right' size, everyone from my own friends to the manicure girl in Karachi. Those curvy film actresses are quite obviously a dying breed."The only rebellion against this hegemony, believes Rifkind, is: "the rise of enveloped clothing expressed through the burkha, hijab, niqab- veiling- which could be seen as protection against the power of the beauty industry." For us feminists that response also negates selfhood and exerts conformity, pain without real gain.More encouraging is how China manages modernity, says Livia Wang, an Anglo-Chinese teenager : "There was definitely a time when students dyed their hair and wore blue contact lenses, but as China opens up economically, I feel the richer classes are returning to more traditional ideas of beauty – maybe pre-communist imperial times. China is quite proud - they have their own movie and pop stars they look up to. So no I don't think the anxieties of western women are being imported." But they may in the end not be able to hold out."There is an explicit correlation between the emergence of so-called 'international looks' and the opening up of the economy to multinational corporations from the west," says Cambridge academic Priyamvada Gopal believes. "Two Indian women won world beauty titles in the N ineties - Aishwarya Rai and Sushmita Sen. Their arrival on the pageant stage symbolised the arrival of India on the world stage as an economic power to be reckoned with. It's what some scholars call the 'economy of sameness' yoking all cultures to the same idea of beauty which is linked to assimilating all countries into the same economic model".And the same mental disintegration. Young Soni is now self harming and starving herself. On her wall she has posters of Keira Knightley and Karina Kapoor, the beautiful looked up to by a new generation of the damned in the globalised world.With additional reporting by Hannah Ellis-Petersonspoke to is scathing: "Silly girl, Katy, going for retro like that. Elephants and garish colours – really, how low-class! Makes us look so backward. Really, don't they know we are modernising? Our designers and models could be on catwalks in Paris and Milan now. We got the message." And how.Mika Bhatia, a 21-year-old student and a Californian of Indian origin, says urban India is ruthlessly cutting the ties from its history and way of life: "Fifteen years ago, the American influence was absent and women would dress in their traditional clothes and look great. Now, it's all about Western clothes. It's sad. It's happening so fast." You can see similar trends in other developing nations and emerging markets. Globalisation shrinks the world in more ways than we think.Sophie Kafeero was my roommate at university in Uganda. She was a wonderfully vivacious African woman with a curvy body, pursued by male students. "It wouldn't happen today," she tells me. "Young women who want to be popular, 'showcase' girlfriends are skinny – they have to be." One young woman I spoke to said she so didn't want to be like her large mother that she has become anorexic. Quacks offer Chinese potions to get weight off. Business is booming.Ugandan British solicitor, Jennifer Nyeko Jones, confirms these trends. "The old posters are slowly fading – when large women were admired because it meant they were living well," she says. "Western men who go to Africa looking for girls are bringing this idea, too. African men are not asking for it. Gyms are now everywhere, taking the place of popular local beauty parlours."Until 2001, no black African woman had ever won the Miss World competition, mainly because the nations selected big lovelies with sassy walks. Then, a Western scout found the Nigerian, Agbani Darego: tall, slim, small nose, large eyes, shiny skin. She was duly crowned and became the new ideal beauty. Aids is known as the "slim disease" across the continent. Now, another slim disease has arrived.Elsewhere in the world, the demand is for altered features. South Korean women can have their eyes de-orientalised for $800. More nose jobs are done in Iran than any other country on earth. In his project Love Me, about the global beauty industry, British photographer Zed Nelson last year raised the spectre of an "eerily homogenised" world, dull and samey like a prairie.Along with goods and services, neuroses are also being exported, from us in the West to them in the rest of the world. In the age of exploration, Europeans unknowingly introduced their diseases into populations which had no immunity to protect them. The viruses now transmitted abroad are carried on the backs of consumerism and free enterprise.We need to face up to what that has done to our own societies and debate the ethics of the economic model that creates misery and dissatisfaction – and cashes in on it. And then ask ourselves, by what right do we inflict the same and worse on other civilisations?Western women are programmed and controlled by the peddlers of physical perfection, even though from time to time we like to imagine we have pulled ourselves free. Take Christina Hendricks, the stupendously voluptuous Joan Holloway in the TV series Mad Men, apparently the nemesis of zealous body regulators who only exalt females with lovely bones and small, pert boobs. The MP Lynne Featherstone believes the actress is a "fabulous" role model and is setting up discussions with people from the fashion and media industries to get them to change models from little to large and boost female confidence. But for these merchants, small is bountiful – it brings in mega-profits. Women with meat on them are unsightly; they're no good as bait.True, public effusion breaks out seasonally when, on TV, Nigella invites millions to drool over her puddings. Beth Ditto, the singer, Ruth Jones from the popular series Gavin and Stacey, and dear old Ann Widdecombe are big and proud, but the appeal for most is freakish. The idolatry of Hendricks, too, is more hope than expectation. Like a modern-day Botticelli maiden, she rises out of the sea, briefly, before going under again. The exceptions above can't overturn the rules. Smart, successful, aspirational people are lean or must try to be.The scale and penetration of such messaging in modern times is unprecedented. Academic Kate Fox, of the Social Issues Research Centre, warned back in 1998: "Advances in technology have caused normal concerns about how we look to become obsessions ... we have become accustomed to rigid and uniform standards of beauty ... on TV billboards and magazines, we see 'beautiful people' all the time, making exceptional good looks seem real, normal and attainable".For the comedian and writer, Arabella Weir, this trickery leads to perpetual dissatisfaction: "The celeb culture holds up the thin look, and at the same time it invites us to see this as ordinary – we can have a life just like these people. See Cheryl Cole? We can buy copies of her shoes and be her." Except we can't.You could argue that every age has beauty prototypes and evanescence is the handmaiden of capitalism. Women have been made to conform to templates within all social systems. The horrendous corsets of the Victorian era broke women's bodies and the girdles of the Fifties severely controlled the feminine form.Then the corsets became psychological. Weir's poignant new book, The Real Me is Thin, describes how her parents, both academics, believed girls had to be thin, "to please men, to be fantasised about". The child was forbidden pudding or the extra potato. Her mother said that watching Arabella eat was like having hot knives poked into her eyes. Most young women interviewed for Weir's book confessed that they would not have dessert on a first date. Gluttony puts men off, they fear.However, even until the late Nineties, the Western idea of beauty was not squeezed into one thin tube. Stars could still come in different shapes and sizes. The supermodels of the 1980s were strong-looking and broad-shouldered. Before that, Audrey Hepburn and Twiggy were thought stunning, but so, too, Ava Gardner, Liz Taylor, Sophia Loren and Marilyn Monroe. In 2010, even the shapely Liz Hurley seems too fleshy; model Lara Stone (a size eight) is thought daringly "curvy" and dream girl Cheryl Cole has melted down to size zero, the official size for the young, female and lionised. Kareena Kapoor is only following the new cosmopolitan aesthetics.Thousands of years ago, Plato tried to codify facial attractiveness and, since then, researchers into beauty have found that symmetry and certain features have universal appeal. But to offset homogeneity is that other evolutionary imperative – variety. In his Descent of Man, Darwin asserted: "It is certainly not true that there is in the mind of man any universal standard of beauty with respect to the human body. It is, however, possible that certain tastes, in the course of time, become inherited."Anorexic chic has gone way beyond inherited taste; it ensnares millions, imperils the future itself. Intelligent women feel caught in the vice. As Mika Bhatia says: "There's such an obsession with being skinny. I wish I could say that I am removed from all of that but I don't think I am. I have always felt I had to work on my appearance and stay thin, even though I know what can happen. A close female relative who was at UCLA has developed an eating disorder." Bhatia's family are the new globetrotters, with the gain – and tragic losses – that brings. Maria is 20, a nursery school assistant and the daughter of Greek-Cypriot migrants. She is so sick of being on diets that she is on anti-depressants instead: "How does Renée Zellweger get all that weight off and I can't? I have even written to her to ask. I hate myself, just a fucking failure. Look! Even my hands are fat. I can't wear a thong – my tush is too fat." A poet might once have written about her bloom, but such beauty has no place in our times.These distorted values are dysphoric for all women, but for British-Asians, these images had not, until recently, infected our eyes, nor narrowed our tastes. There is among us an abhorrent acceptance of skin colour hierarchies in which light is best. But on the whole, we managed to avoid the brainwashing. The models and actresses didn't look like us so we could ignore them. Not any more.Soni, a teenage British-Asian girl, whose name means "lovely", can't bear to look at herself. The model and TV presenter Alexa Chung struts through her dreams. Her mother fears her daughter is going mad. Only as mad as other girls of her age. "Why can't she like herself? At 48, I think I look good, a little fat maybe, but so what? Even my mother likes her face. But not Soni, my rose, born here. In my village back home, I looked in the rivers and thought my face was so pretty. Soni says she will have operations one day." Many of our daughters are in similar crises.These are momentous and dangerous cultural shifts, warns the psychotherapist Gabrielle Rifkind: "Pressure on women as to how they should look came from different forms – from family, partners and friends. Now, it is the constant bombardment from the media and beauty industry, and this leads to a reduction in their ability to be independent of thought and creative in their own forms of self-expression – the autonomy of the mind. The sexualisation of their image, expressed by very tight clothes and exposure of the body has accentuated a deep experience of alienation from the body, as expressed in rapid increase of anorexia and obesity."Almost two decades ago, the writer Naomi Wolf foresaw the coming blight in her seminal book, The Beauty Myth. She was subjected to extraordinary vitriol for exposing the dark side of the beauty business. She lost; they won. The most unachievable image of pulchritude is pressed into female psyches so that women spend and cry. Natasha Walter, author of Living Dolls, a book on young women today, admits feminists should have been more vigilant: "I used to be blasé about beauty myths. It was the concrete stuff that mattered – jobs, equality and all that. Now I can see how these industries fed into insecurities, spread a punishing view of what it means to be aspirational, the idea of failure. Its impact is huge." Especially, she says, among bright, ambitious girls in sixth-form colleges. When she was young, "you could choose your persona and style. It was cool to look as if you weren't trying too hard, to be eccentric."Walter did find that contemporary black women were happier with their bodies and own individual choices. Similarly, a study carried out in 2002 (Maya Poran, Sex Roles, Vol 47) compared the self-images of Latin, black and white women. Although all groups agreed on what is thought to be perfect – white, slim, tall, straight noses – black women did not let that affect their self-esteem. White and Latino women, in contrast, felt they did not match up.Some emerging economies seem frightfully keen on those manufactured images of perfection. Nonita Karla, editor-in-chief of Elle India, is delighted that her readers want to join the dubious club. "Indians have a more international concept of beauty," she says. "And we are now more in sync with global views and values, now it is an established fact. There is a global standard of beauty which is very Western-influenced, but local ideals live on, side by side."Geoffrey Jones, author of The History of the Global Beauty Industry, is less sanguine: "The globalisation of mega, celebrity and luxury brands provides compelling evidence of the 'flattening' of the world. These brands are the carriers of the latest trends, which companies now seem to be able to spread around the world, regardless of cultural traditions, ethnicity or income levels." This latest rush carries on from the periods of industrialisation and empire when white beauty norms were transplanted to colonised lands. Before then, says Jones, "human societies had their own beauty ideals which differed sharply from one another."i loved the old Bollywood actresses: graceful, bosomy and wide with soft bellies. With saris you cannot corset or hide much, nor did they try. Age did not bother stars such as Meena Kumari, Rakhi, Waheeda Rehman. To many young British women interviewed for this article, the actresses are "gross", "overweight", "outdated". Most urban Indians would concur. Such a terrible shame, especially in an old land which we know – from cave paintings and the erotic Kama Sutra – celebrated the infinite diversity of the Indian female form.In her book, Images of the Modern Woman in Asia, Shoma Munshi writes: "Until the 1980s, it was fine to be well-rounded and voluptuous and films and advertisements of the time reflected this ... [now] the Indian cinema and adverts reflect the arrival of the perfectly sculpted body to meet exacting international standards." It is, Munshi believes, to do with a vast and growing middle-class in that country (125 million so far) who "swing between their Indian traditions and an internalised trans-national identity more in keeping with global lifestyles".As with Starbucks, the reach is infinite, though some are managing to resist the lure of the West. Just. In parts of Africa and Arabia, female beauties can have big hips, bellies and breasts. The pernicious word "perfect" has not yet entered their lexicon. I asked Jemima Khan if she saw middle-class Pakistan succumbing to Western tastes. "The country is more conservative than India," she explains, "particularly in terms of fashion and dress. The salwar kameez is designed to conceal a woman's figure. My sister-in-law, for example, hid her pregnancy until a week before giving birth. Having said that, I interviewed a top model/actress there recently and, yes she was minute – the Western ideal."The only rebellion against this hegemony, believes Rifkind, is "the rise of enveloped clothing expressed through the burka, hijab and niqab – veiling, which could be seen as protection against the power of the beauty industry". For us feminists, that response also negates selfhood and exerts conformity, pain without real gain.More encouraging is how China manages modernity, says Livia Wang, an Anglo-Chinese teenager I spoke to. "There was definitely a time when students dyed their hair and wore blue contact lenses, but as China opens up economically, I feel the richer classes are returning to more traditional ideas of beauty – maybe pre-Communist, imperial times. China is quite proud – they have their own movie and pop stars they look up to." But they may, in the end, not be able to hold out."There is an explicit correlation between the emergence of so-called 'international looks' and the opening up of the economy to multinational corporations from the West," says the Cambridge academic Priyamvada Gopal. "Two Indian women won world beauty titles in the Nineties – Aishwarya Rai and Sushmita Sen. Their arrival on the pageant stage symbolised the arrival of India on the world stage as an economic power to be reckoned with. It's what some scholars call the 'economy of sameness', yoking all cultures to the same idea of beauty, which is linked to assimilating all countries into the same economic model."And the same mental disintegration. Young Soni is now self-harming and starving herself. On her wall she has posters of Keira Knightley and Karina Kapoor, the beautiful looked up to by a new generation of the damned in the globalised world.Additional reporting by Hannah Ellis-Peterson Welcome to Modelslips, Jezebel's inside guide to Fashion Week as seen through the gimlet eyes of our very own 35-inch hipped, gel-schellacked, damaged-hair and hotdog-eating Anonymodel "Tatiana." She's smart! She's thin! And she's BEHOLDEN TO NO ONE. But what she was this weekend was a little bored, and so, instead of tripping down the runway (no that's not her above left), she answered your questions. The biggest difference between modeling and, well, other jobs I've had, is how much surprise is inherent to the former. It's kind of cool that, on a given day, you might get a call from your agent informing you that you're booked on the next plane to Prague. The perpetual motion of fashion pulls even people like me, the totally unknown, relatively-interchangeable, low-hanging fruit of the modeling world, to locales we might never have dreamed of, back at home. And then sometimes, it doesn't. This weekend, Diane von Furstenburg had her show, as did Alexander Wang, Hervé Leger, Preen, Miss Sixty, Abaeté, Sass & Bide, Threeasfour, and Tuleh. Even , that spit-marking freak, and Zulema, that crazy-eyed model thief, had shows. I was on option for a total of five jobs this weekend, including one or more of the above. An "option" is modelspeak for a Pretty Good Shot at a job — it means the client likes you enough to want to officially nab first dibs on you for a given time slot. Some options get upped to confirmations, some dematerialize for reasons unknown. Of course, as with grades, there is options inflation: Prada is notorious for putting hundreds of models on option for shows or campaigns and then picking only a half-dozen or none at all, in which case they'll just start their process over. But, in general, options are strong indications of interest, and over the long term as many as one half should come through. Given the rough formula of Jobs = Options X .5, I thought I'd be working all weekend. Instead, my options collapsed like a house of cards. Every last one canceled. Even the designer who, right after his casting last week, called me back uptown and kept me in his studio for five semi-clothed hours, causing me to miss three other castings while I feverishly wriggled into and out of every scrap of cloth the man designed in the last six months — the designer whose wholesale volume I read in WWD just topped $1 million — dropped me. Five unpaid hours. Sometimes them's the breaks. I'm afraid I consequently failed to do anything particularly model-esque this weekend. Aside from going to the usual castings, and hitting up a sample sale where I popped my Christian Dior ready-to-wear cherry to the tune of $200, I did not actually work. I did not get my hair done, nor was my makeup professionally applied. I did not walk as if my shoulder blades were tied together by an invisible thread, and I did not go to any crazy cocaine-and-champagne parties at sweaty clubs in the Meatpacking District where a quarter of the models were drinking water to feel "full." I did not see the Fug Girls or Fern Mallis or even Nolé Marin. I sat home watching crappy TV, went to a museum, and wondered why I keep reading about when my agency has BCBG on its blacklist for non-payment. But I'm not in low spirits. I'm confirmed for various shows this week — heck, even Chanel Iman had a slow start to her New York fashion week last season — and if my five weekend options all fell through, then the formula should hold that nearly all of my remaining options should come through. Either that or I'll find out I'm going to Prague next weekend. Instead of regaling you more with tales of my uneventful weekend, I took the opportunity to answer some of your (very thoughtful and much-appreciated!) questions. 1. From : What's the most ridiculous direction you've ever been given on a photo shoot? How do you feel about nude shots? Who's the nastiest designer you've worked for? The kindest? Who is the most like Jacobim Mugatu? I'm fine with nudity, personally. I consider it a point of professionalism to just wear the clothes you're given. The stylist picked them for her own unsearchable reasons, and it's not my job to say things like, "Oh, I'm not comfortable wearing a huge crucifix/exposing my left nipple/jumping around in those ridiculous Hammerpants." I'm a model. The least I can do is wear the clothes. Luckily enough my boyfriend has no issues with my chest appearing in the occasional fashion magazine. My professionalism finds its limits in only one area: depictions of smoking. I just don't see why I should advertise Philip Morris gratis. The nicest designer I've ever met was also the most deeply annoying. Kris Van Assche stole my boy Hedi Slimane's spot at the helm of Dior Homme, and for this I will never forgive him. Hedi Slimane could design darts that made me weak at the knees. Hedi Slimane took a fashion backwater where the main creative activity was making the two-button-suit v. three-button-suit question seem new! each! season! and turned it into a phenomenon people actually paid attention to. Men in skirts! Madonna in menswear! Karl Lagerfeld lost over 88 pounds to wear Hedi Slimane's suits. That is a fucking fashion talent. And then his first assistant, Kris Van Assche, took over the label and made . So even though he seemed like the nicest guy in the world when I met him, I was still crying on the inside. Because just one season prior, I would've had the chance to touch Mr. Slimane. 2. A series from : Is it funny or horrifying to watch a fellow model take a dive on the runway? Horrifying. And always particularly horrifying because nobody ever steps in to help: at a lot of runway shows, the front row is seated just inches from where we walk. But there's a kind of diving-bell/don't-touch-the-strippers aspect to runway work. Whether it's Naomi Campbell plopping on her ass or just poor Kamila W. hitting the floor, nobody ever offers a hand. I live in fear of ever working a Vivienne Westwood show. I adore her aesthetic, and applaud on hiring minority models. But she has a longstanding habit of expecting her models to walk in 9" fetish heels, heels that can and have broken ankles. I think I'd be too frightened to take a step. 3. Are underage models, i.e. 15, paid fairly or are they taken advantage of (and how the hell can they work in the US, don't we have child labor laws?) I think the teens are paid as well as the models who've reached the age of majority. There's no such thing as youth rates for modeling jobs — but most of the youngsters have higher expenses, since they need to live in chaperoned apartments, and/or have a parent traveling with them, so they'll see less net from a $4,000 job than, say, I would (come on, someone, send a $4,000 job my way! I have consumer debt like the rest of y'all). In general, I think you're less likely to be sexually harassed on the job if your high school profession is modeling instead of the ubiquitous alternative, . I've done both. Modeling is full of gay men who tell you you're fierce and make ribald jokes you can actually laugh at. Retail is full of creepy managers constantly undressing you with their eyes and angling to cop a feel. As for child labor laws, I think modeling falls into the exceptions governing entertainment and the arts, so there are child and teen models the same way there are child and teen actors. 4. If models eat do they promptly throw it up? I don't, and I've never knowingly lived with a bulimic model. The rates of eating disorders among models, for all the attention the issue has attracted, are actually relatively unstudied by academics. performed at the University of Waterloo in Canada in 2007 compared models with female undergraduates, and found that the prevalence of eating disorders did not differ significantly between models and students. However, models were significantly more likely to smoke, and twice as likely as students to report vomiting after meals. But all the models who admitted vomiting for weight control claimed to do so only occasionally, meaning they wouldn't necessarily all meet the criteria for a bulimia diagnosis. 5. From : If I can toss in a question, I'd like to know if you ever feel proprietary about your image? Like, do you get angry or embarrassed by a client's concept or a photographer's execution? One of the few reasons I still read American Vogue is for Jeffrey Steingarten's food column. Like lots of models, it's never been my favorite fashion mag because it's very repetitive month-to-month and even page-by-page in some cases. But Steingarten's a genius. In a piece about the truffle hunters of Piedmont, Italy, Steingarten asks one of his sources, a man who's coming to the end of his career, what he dreams might await him in heaven. The old man pauses, and says that all he would really, really like to see is all the truffles he's ever retrieved in one room. Just to see what they look like, all together in one place. I have kind of the same feeling about my pictures. I sell the rights to my image for a living. I'm complicit in my own objectification, and I have no role in the creation or dissemination of the pictures I animate, yet I'm still unmistakably there. I do not feel proprietary about these images — I think you give up that right when you sign the agency contract — but I do feel a strange sort of attachment to them. I get my photo taken dozens of times daily, if not hundreds. Every casting agent snaps a zillion Polaroids (sometimes I think the fashion industry is single-handedly keeping Polaroid in business). At shows, where everything from the hairspray to the nail polish to the champagne is sponsored, photographers from all the donor companies crowd the backstage, getting hundreds of frames of whatever in the makeup artist's hands. Then, on the runway, the whole press corps snaps away at you, not to mention editorials, with their hundreds of discarded frames. They're all tiny, tiny parts of me. Sometimes I imagine what it would be like to see every picture I've ever appeared in in one place. How high would the stack be? How many megabytes would I fill? When do I look most confident? Most nervous? What was my best haircut and color after all? When there are so many pieces of you out in the ether — liable to turn up in in miniature on the back pages of magazines with captions like "Models backstage at the X show," or plastered on posters for the public to scribble on, or stored in a designer's archives as an indelible record of collection Y from year Z, should anyone ever care to look it up — and when your job depends on being able to take a good picture, these are the (moderately self-obsessed, semi-male-gaze-theoretical) things you think about, from time to time.Confession: I have no idea how to respond to Amy Chua's now "Why Chinese Mothers Are Superior," published to immediate and then sustained cries of disgust, trauma, ridicule, and debate on the blogosphere and the comment-o-sphere.What can I add when Asian American bloggers have already responded with posts like "Parents Like Amy Chua are the reason why Asian-Americans like me are in therapy," and as of today, more than 4,000 comments have been posted in response to Chua, mostly vitriolic and genuine horror at her proposed parenting techniques, (which include calling her eldest daughter "garbage" in front of party guests, and standing over seven-year-old daughter Lulu, excoriating her and threatening to throw out her dollhouse, starve her, and put an end to all birthday and holiday celebrations until she learned how play Jacques Ibert's "The Little White Donkey" on the piano. So here goes — I'm going to try my hardest at sincerity, because in what other manner can we have a dialogue about parenting, childhood, and adolescence, the main movers and shakers behind conversations that begin with, "The reason I'm so fucked up is probably because of…" On that topic, I have my own reasons, many which have a lot to do with how my parents raised me, and some that overlap so neatly with Chua's article that there's a deep part of me that wants to keep these reasons to myself in order to protect my family from outside scrutiny, the kind of shaming and unsolicited offerings of pity that can happen when you summarize your life inchoately, imperfectly, and publicly for others. Like Chua's daughters, I wasn't allowed to have sleepovers, and when I asked my father if I could go to the movies, he would respond, "Didn't you just ask seven months ago?" and when I had to do a school assignment with my friend Chris, my mother was dead afraid that in the middle of discussing my global history project with him I might accidentally be persuaded to turn to a life of rampant drug-use and sexual depravity, despite my oh-so-eloquent teenage protest at the time: "Ew, but I don't even find him good-looking," (sorry Chris), that she made my father drive me to my friend's house and stand outside of his living room window, staring at us through the window the entire time until I got fed up and decided that I'd rather fail the assignment than complete it under my father's watch. I can go on, but what's the point if the story is incomplete? If I don't tell you that my father himself studied English literature for more than ten years, there was a time when he could recite Shakespeare by heart, Melville, Faulkner, Frost, Fitzgerald, Keats, Yeats, Milton, that he came to the United States in the late 1980's as part of the first wave of students, after China opened its door, to pursue a PhD in linguistics at NYU, and he supported himself (and my mom and I) by working menial restaurant jobs and delivering horrible Chinese food (kung-pao my ass) on his bike to fancy apartment-dwellers on the Upper East Side who tipped him quarters, and when it came time to look for jobs in academia, he quickly realized that even though he had once memorized entire sections of the Miriam-Webster dictionary, that there still plenty of people who only heard his accent, who assumed he wasn't very smart or capable because he pronounced clams "claims" and tunnel "turnol." Is it any wonder that my desire to pursue literature dropped heavy stones of dread into my parents' hearts when my father's own trajectory in the humanities and higher education ended when he decided he didn't want our family to be dirt-poor anymore, and dropped out of the PhD program a month before he was due to defend his dissertation, and started all over again, enrolling in computer science courses at Brooklyn Community College when he was thirty five years old? I can tell you about the time I insisted to my mother that no matter what, I was going to follow my dreams of becoming a writer, and she responded by telling me that even though I believed I was special, I was, in fact, normal, ordinary, unexceptional, and there was no point in struggling against that. I don't intend to defend my mother's words, but I do want to understand why she thought I needed to hear that. Was there a part of her that was reacting to her own experience of being treated as alien in a country that won't let people of color forget they are different? I currently live in the south of France, and no matter how unexceptional and unremarkable I think I am, I know every single day, at least once, if not several times, I will encounter someone on the street who will perform a kung-fu move for me, or shout NEE-HAW-MA or ARRIGATO, or sometimes both, often not even viciously or with the intent to embarrass me, but always I am embarrassed, and always I am aware of how lovely it would be if the world didn't take notice of me. Or did my mother believe this because she was so exceptionally beautiful when she was younger that producers from Hong Kong came knocking on my mother's doorstep to try to cast her in movies, and no matter how much my mother begged, my grandmother refused and even went so far as to literally dead-bolt the door shut to keep them out? Even though I am not a parent and have only ever been a daughter, is it true that when we become parents, there is a part of us that wants to say: But look, I gave up on my dreams and I'm still happy, so why won't you? Or a part of us that want to say: But look, I gave up this dream, so now I won't let you. And if both impulses are potentially harmful, then how shall we best raise our children? And what if I tell you that I knew a girl who had piano lessons right before me, who played the piano four hours a day and whose father stood behind her with a yardstick and whacked the back of her head every time she made a mistake, and that was why, my mother told me, she wore turtlenecks even in the summer, and ran away one winter, and what if I tell you I also knew a boy whose mother laid in his bed for half an hour every evening to warm it up for him in preparation, and spooned food into his mouth when he was a full-on teenager so as not to break his concentration when studying. But these people, like my parents, came from highbrow, educated families in China, whose entire livelihood and intellectual property had been destroyed during the Cultural Revolution, who themselves were deprived of a proper education for years and years of their adolescence. It's not an excuse for corporal punishment or excessive-maniacal love, but it's a context. The problem is that I can come up with so many exceptions to every single story I've recounted in this post that it's just worthless to try and extrapolate any sort of generalization about who Chinese parents are and how they treat their children from what I know and what I've seen. I'll never know if my mom's obsession with being ‘normal, not special' has anything to do with intrinsically Chinese values that have been passed on to her, or if these values were idiosyncratic to her, and what's more, I don't think I or anyone else should on the burden and responsibility of deciding what about their own particular experience is universal or representative of an entire culture. And is it because of Chinese parents like Chua, who forbid their children from participating in school plays, that there's such a dearth of Asian American entertainers and performers? Or might it be possible that there are still exists racial barriers and obstacles for Asian American entertainers and performers? (I'm going to go with yes after; there are so few Asian American actresses that when I take that annoying, "Which Celebrity Do You Look Like," test my face always end ups encircled by an unholy halo of Jackie Chan, Lisa Ling, Lucy Liu, and Chris Rock.) And if Asians are just drones with no capacity for original thought, then let's just completely discount the number of Asian Americans who have built successful start-ups in Silicon Valley, the presence of Asians and Asian Americans in fashion design (Jason Wu, Alexander Wang, the Sretsis sisters, Philip Lim, I could go on,) and not to mention I probably don't exist as a person since I'm currently writing a novel in France, and not, you know, memorizing math equations. Somehow, despite the ridiculous tone of Chua's essay, I can't help but feel a kind of tenderness toward her, especially after learning that she the aggressively provocative article, and that the rest of her book from which the article is excerpted is a lot more self-disparaging and self-searching. But mostly, I feel sorry for her and anxious to see what sort of dialogue arises from this article because as Chimamanda Adichie says so beautifully in her , "The danger of a single story," where she proposes, "The consequence of the single story is this: It robs people of dignity. It makes our recognition of our equal humanity difficult. It emphasizes how we are different rather than how we are similar." And I, and many, many more Asian and Asian American bloggers can assure you that Amy Chua's story is just that: a single story. And in a strange way, I'm heartened by the response of the Asian American blogging community to this article. The blogger writes tenderly of growing up in a small rural town, where his parents owned a restaurant and worked 14 hours a day, six days a week, and how he would help them in his spare time, sometimes by watching "Wheel of Fortune in the backroom," adding: In fact, the first time I encountered the stereotype of the overbearing Chinese parents—probably in something written by Amy Tan, I couldn't relate at all. The idea was foreign and exotic to me. Which is probably why people love reading about it so much. Or the spirited from Resist Racism: So fuck you, Amy Chua, for reinforcing that tired old model minority stereotype. For speaking for an entire group of people and ascribing your abusive parenting to your culture. Fuck you for every person who expresses surprise at my chosen profession. Because we don't do that. Fuck you for all those people who interviewed me and marveled how they didn't know any Asian Americans in that line of work. Despite the fact I was sitting right in front of them. Because obviously my parents should not have "allowed" me to enter my field. Listen, if we want to be the kind of feminists who understand the headscarf debate as more nuanced than simply Muslim women are oppressed because they are forced to cover their faces, then we need to bring that complexity to the table when discussing parenting methods, and certainly we need to bring that complexity to the table before we condemn or elevate an entire population of people, who never consented in the first place to be represented and summarized by one woman's story and one newspaper editor's shitty and misleading idea for a title. Correction: The author wants to note that in fact, it's Taiwanese actor (and heartthrob!) Jay Chou who plays Seth Rogen's sidekick in The Green Hornet, not Korean American actor John Chou, and she heartily apologizes for the sloppy error. However, she does want to note that her homeboy Ken Jeong, born and raised in the United States, was cast as the flagrantly flamboyant, broken-English screeching villain in the 2009 movie, The Hangover. Jenny Zhang is a writer and blogs at Correction: This article has been revised; the original version stated that actor appearing in The Green Hornet was native English-speaker John Cho, sporting a fake Chinese accent. The actor is in fact Jay Chou, who's Taiwanese and learned much of his English just before shooting the film.In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.Critical darling Alexander Wang has been hit with a $50 million lawsuit by garment workers at his Manhattan studio who say that they had to work 16-hour shifts without breaks or legally mandated overtime pay. Alexander Wang apparently saw revenues of over $25 million last year. The allegations are pretty serious: Wenyu Lu and dozens of co-workers charge that Wang, 28, and his brother, Dennis, violated numerous state labor laws in their operation at 386 Broadway. As a result, Lu and the others have suffered injuries, illnesses, lost time from work and lost sleep, says their suit filed in Queens Supreme Court. Lu, 56, claims he was hospitalized for several days after he passed out at his workstation because he was forced to work 25 hours without a break and was warned that he would be fired if he didn't follow orders. Lu eventually was fired, the suit alleges, in retaliation for complaining about the working conditions (and for filing a worker's compensation claim to cover treatment for the injuries he allegedly suffered at work). The timeline seems to sync with the pre-fashion week busy period when designers are rushing to prepare for the show and the studio may have to produce all the samples for the new collection — around that time, 16-hour days aren't unusual for anyone who works in the industry. But you still have to pay people. Including overtime. (Unless they're models; then you can keep them working until 4:30 a.m. and .) Wang has yet to respond to the suit. [] This track, "Ima Read," by someone called Zebra Katz, is apparently the song of Paris fashion week. Tommy Ton called it "BEST SOUNDTRACK EVER" after it played at Rick Owens. Derek Blasberg added, "It's the anthem in the Harper's Bazaar car, the V magazine team knows every single word, Vogue Japan's Anna Dello Russo just likes saying the word ‘bitch' over and over again, and W magazine's Edward Enninful will sing it to complete strangers." Lynn Yaeger has a slightly different take, calling it "deeply offensive if catchy": "I'm gonna take that bitch to college! I'm gonna give that bitch some knowledge!" intones a rapper who calls himself Zebra Katz over the loudest of loudspeakers, jolting awake the somnambulant fashion audience at the Rick Owens show. What a nice, uplifting message. [, ] Kris Humphries' older sister Kaela is now a plus-size model. Does she remind anyone else of Miranda Kerr, just a tad? [] Model Laura Catterall made the cover of French Cosmopolitan. On the one hand: yay, body diversity. On the other: she's depicted doing all the usual plus-size model things, like eating food and hanging out in her underwear. [] Ashika Pratt, Alyssah Ali and Jessica Clark made the March cover of Vogue India. [] This Agent Provocateur ad is kind of disturbing. [] Jourdan Dunn tweeted this weekend that she was at a fitting for Kanye West's upcoming show, his second. That's perhaps a good sign, because last season Kanye didn't have time for fittings, and pretty much nothing fit. Dunn further said the shoes were "crazy high!" Then she wrote, "Don't get me wrong the shoes are sexy as fuck but you can't walk in them!" And then, "Or maybe its not the shoes……..its me………. *shurgs*" Fellow model Leomie Anderson wrote back, "omg the model who fit for his clothes said the shoes were so bad and he was cussin her." Kanye, if you're going to make shoes that retail for nearly $6,000 — like last season's, which didn't exactly look comfortable on the runway — it might make sense to make them so that people can walk in them. It's a bad sign if your models can't walk: they wear sky-high, impractical footwear for a living. [] Around 2% of the tights sold by pricey brand Emilio Cavallini each year are purchased by men. So the company decided to make some tights it calls unisex, with a slightly tweaked fabric content (for better breathability, since "men perspire much more," explains Francesco Cavallini). "I think the mantyhose are also being worn for warmth under pants during cold weather months and also at home to lounge around in.…The tights are comfortable," says Cavallini, who wear-tested them himself. []In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.The fashion world is pretty much jizzing itself over the new Versace for H&M collaboration. The clothes will be in stores November 19th, but last night, celebrities and fashion folk took over Pier 57 on the Hudson river for an exclusive runway show. The red carpet was black, the walls were covered with crocodiles, and the stars dressed up in their brightest, most colorful prints, for once. The retailer will be selling a line inspired by the suits worn by the gentlemen of Sterling Cooper. (The show has also partnered with Clorox, so look for cheeky collar-bleaching spots.) [, ]Betsey Johnson has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. Johnson's company was given a from bankruptcy in 2010 by Steve Madden, the shoe maker and convicted felon, after it defaulted on a nearly $50 million loan. Madden's company paid the debt, taking as collateral all of Betsey Johnson's intellectual property, and began the process of restructuring the company and pumping out more licensed goods — but the restructuring didn't really take, and retail sales are down by more than 20% since 2007. As a result of the bankruptcy filing, about 350 people will lose their jobs, and the majority of the chain's 63 stores will be shuttered. Johnson, who got her start as a costume designer on Andy Warhol's films (and who was once to John Cale), says that the company will reorganize and emerge from bankruptcy, she will remain the creative director, and that she will have a runway show in September. [, ] Linda Evangelista stars in a dancing-themed cover editorial in the new Vogue Italia. The magazine uploaded to preview GIFs to its Web site. [] Elle has a history of the two-piece women's swimsuit up on its site, including Frenchmen Jacques Heim's 1946 "Atome" swimsuit and Louis Réard's 1947 "Bikini." The 1944 of four Mexican women bathing in a stream, one of whom is wearing something that looks very much like a two-piece swimsuit, which was unearthed last year by fashion history blog Of Another Fashion is not included; in fact, all of the bikini-wearing women in Elle's history appear to be white. [, ] This photo of two models posing as a gay couple in 1942 is part of a new Ray-Ban campaign intended to glorify "rebels" throughout history. [] Yeah, maybe it's not such a good idea to call one colorway of your stupid manicure-with-lumps-in-it nail polish set "Ghetto Fabulous." That's shading into "Juarez" territory. []Tom Scocca wrote a glowing review of Bill Cunningham New York, the documentary about New York Times street style photographer, which was just released in the U.S.: "Cunningham's work falls in the territory where fashion becomes clothing, or vice versa. The fashion industry itself prefers to obfuscate how this works, how the decisions of designers, prepared seasons in advance, correspond somehow to the collective desires of the public to choose put on a particular style in the moment. Cunningham blows away the smoke and mist, asking only, what do I see people wearing now?...The theory of Bill Cunningham is democratic and objective; the practice is autocratic and subjective. That is: he's a journalist, a real one. He imposes his sensibility on the world with severe neutrality." [] The film is outstanding. Here is a clip to tide you over until you go see it. [] James Franco gets a cover, a multi-page editorial spread, and 5,000 words devoted to his various excellences in the new issue of GQ Style, GQ UK's semiannual fashion supplement. [] Jean Baptiste Mondino shot Mia Wasikowska — one of the Kids who is All Right — in a white face mask for the cover of W. [] Karl Lagerfeld did some lovely fashion illustrations for a new edition of Justine Picardie's biography of Coco Chanel. []In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.British Vogue says its current Adele cover is "one of the magazine's most popular (and best-selling)," but didn't make any circulation numbers available, perhaps because it is still on sale. [] Supermodel Lara Stone has some thoughts on Dutch prostitutes: "They get more bloody benefits than I do. The women are their own bosses. They rent their own space, pay taxes. It's better than standing on a street corner like a crack whore." Stone also says growing up in the Dutch town of Mierlo was awesome. "I used to smoke so much pot when I was living there. That's why I can't remember so much," she says. "But really it's just a plant." []" [] Kirsten Dunst wears bangs and that Giambattista Valli pink-and-red dress on the new cover of Flare. []Getting a licensed replica of the Carolina Herrera wedding dress Kristen Stewart wore to marry her sparkly, fanged, 110-year-old boyfriend in the new Twilight movie to market in time to coincide with the film's release was apparently a big struggle. Only four people knew that the dress in production was the dress; it was shipped to Alfred Angelo stores in secret, and the studio jokes that the bridal retailer had to sign an NDA "in blood." The final can be yours for just $799. That's roughly half of the David's Bridal licensed copy of Kim Kardashian's wedding dress! Only Twilight's fictional wedding hasn't yet ended in divorce. [] In other news of world-famous white dresses, Alexander McQueen made a version of Pippa Middleton's bridesmaid dress available for $1,800 at Net-A-Porter; it is, naturally, already sold out. [] Scarlett Johanson is on the cover of Interview. [] Dita Von Teese is launching a lingerie collection at Target in Australia called "Von Follies by Dita Von Teese." [] And Daphne Guinness has a holiday collection with M.A.C. The heiress says she's loved makeup since she was a child. But back then, instead of using makeup, "I would use watercolours or acrylics or anything I could get my hands on. Sometimes I would paint pictures on my face, on my eyelids or whatnot." [] H&M knocked off a year-old Carven jacket. [] The time when a model starts getting cast as the "mom" — in this case, to Eloise, the 5-year-old daughter of Vogue editor Meredith Melling Burke — is an interesting point of inflection in any girl's career. Twenty-four-year-old Caroline Trentini doesn't seem altogether thrilled to have reached it. Another weird industry rubicon? Model's First Bridal Shoot, although that generally happens around age 15-16 (see top photo). [] Dutch new face Anne Verhallen says the last-minute nature of the business has been the hardest adjustment. "You get confirmed for a job an hour before you have to fly there. I always think, They spend so much time and energy and money on these shoots and these jobs, wouldn't you want to know what girl you have to work with like at least a week before?" []In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.The Council of Fashion Designers of America (CFDA) just announced the nominees for its annual awards (think: the Oscars of the fashion industry), and, as reported earlier, Marc Jacobs nabbed a prestigious Womenswear Designer of the Year nod. But considering the fact that his peers spent the past year harping on him and that every critic under the sun (except the ever-adoring Cathy Horyn) said that his Spring/Summer 2008 collection sucked big time, the nomination seemed a little shocking. Still, he'll probably win: After all, he's probably the American designer with the most name recognition and ability to parlay his branded name into dollar signs. After the jump, I compare Jacobs to the other nominees, including those for the Swarovski Womenswear Designer of the Year (given to a rising designer with the most promise), complete with pretty photos, and a tiny bit of backstory on each. Womenswear Designer of the Year: Designer: Marc Jacobs Known for: Running late, reviving punk, loving Victoria Beckham and Sponge Bob SquarePants, equally Seen on: Posh, natch. Also: Winona Ryder, Courtney Love, M.I.A., and every starlet under the sun Odds of winning: 2:3 (I mean, the guy had a nervous breakdown and put out two radically different collections this year. Plus, he got CFDA prez Diane von Furstenberg to say that she would chain herself to a grate before she let him show in Paris) Designer: Francisco Costa for Calvin Klein Known for: Keeping it simple, being a nice guy Seen on: Ashley Olsen, Kate Bosworth, ELLE editor-in-chief Roberta Myers Odds of winning: 1:3 (Won in 2006 — doesn't really need to win again) Designer: Lazaro Hernandez and Jack McCollough for Proenza Schouler. Known for: Intricate bustier dresses, being style chameleons, being child prodigies Seen on: Amy Adams, Isla Fisher Odds of winning: 1:3 (Won last year, but tied with Oscar de la Renta. Is this their year to not share the spotlight?) Swarovski Womenswear Designer of the Year: Designer: Kate & Laura Mulleavy for Rodarte Known for: Gauze-strewn punk fairy dresses; being "intellectual" Seen on: Natalie Portman Odds of winning: 1:3 (Might be too intellectual and not practical enough for the fickle fashion world.) Designer: Thakoon Panichgul Known for: Wares that resemble the love-child of a hippie and a minimalist Seen on: Top fashion editors, young fashion assistants who blow an entire fiscal quarter's pay on one piece Odds of winning: 2:3 (The vet of the young designer set. He'll probably be rewarded for his good behavior) Designer: Alexander Wang Known for: Being a punk rock outlaw Seen on: 15-year old Estonian models Odds of winning: 1:3 (The young whippersnapper just got into the game — they're going to make him work for a statuette) [Photos via , , and ]In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.Apparently, there have been "internal grumblings" at Chanel's U.S. division over the brand's choice to hire Blake Lively as a face. Certain people say that Lively's is an "off-brand look" — "the bitchy fashion industry's clinical way of saying that Lively's contemporary American beauty does not dovetail with Chanel USA's efforts to sell its fashions as the height of European sophistication," explains the Daily News. When Lively was named the new star of the brand's ads, she memorably told the press that Chanel handbags are special because they're "full of dreams." [] After studying Lara Stone's underwear very closely, a CBS affiliate is willing to advance the theory that this billboard has a hidden message that reads "F U c K." Once you see it, you can't un-see it. []In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.Christian Siriano's boyfriend, the musician Brad Walsh, wrote a long and impassioned blog post about what he perceives to be the fashion establishment's bias against Siriano's work because he came to prominence on a reality show. Noting that many writers still place Siriano's collections in the context of Project Runway, a show that taped nearly five years ago, mention his Payless shoe collection disparagingly, and at best make back-handed compliments about how Siriano is "shak[ing] off his reality-show roots," Walsh asks, "is it mostly, as I suspect, that he's accomplished all of this without their help? The precious few were told Christian was good — they did not deem him good — which makes their objection to him almost childish." Walsh mentions an encounter with "a reporter from a website that extensively covers fashion" who found the designer, in conversation with Anna Wintour and Carolina Herrera, at the ballet: When the reporter had her chance at intermission to speak with Christian on the record, her question was "what do you think about mustaches?" The next day, her publication printed Christian's short and bewildered response purposely alongside an unattractive picture of him with his mouth agape, as he was answering the question. Rather than ask "how do you know Carolina Herrera" or "what did you speak to Anna about," she asked "what do you think about mustaches?" To me, that indicates that there's a problem, and it doesn't lie with Christian. (Googling "christian siriano mustaches" yields a surprising number of results, incidentally, though we were unable to identify this publication or this writer.) Walsh also calls out — but does not name — the work of Meenal Mistry, a Style.com critic who has some Project Runway digs in her time. But more than any specific writer or publication, Walsh seems interested in critiquing an overall climate of opinion that he regards as lazy and classist — and hypocritical, given that Rachel Zoe and André Leon Talley participate in (much cheesier) reality shows and yet haven't had to hand in their fashion cred cards. (Although it's not true that the stylist Zoe's efforts to launch a licensed clothing line have been met with universal approval from the fashion establishment — it was after all a Teen Vogue editor who for knocking off a vintage dress, a dress that Zoe had actually included years earlier in a shoot for the magazine Zoe herself styled.) Walsh also mentions some critics and publications that have come around to Siriano's work. It's never seemly for a designer to call out a critic (and although Walsh says that Siriano had no input into his post, other than consenting to its being published, he will almost certainly be regarded by some as Siriano's media surrogate), and there are many reasons one could imagine a reporter might ask a source what he thinks of mustaches — not every interview has to be about Serious Issues Of The Day — but Walsh's post is an interesting read. [] You must have seen Rachel Weisz cuddling a baby goat on the cover of AnOther Magazine. [] Alexander Wang, Dustin Lance Black, and Ryan McGinley share the new cover of Out. McGinley says he made out with Black on the set of Milk, where he was taking photographs. And there's this: "McGinley used to throw a gay dance party, Main Man, in New York City's Lower East Side, which is where he met Wang. 'Have you seen him dance?' McGinley asks. 'He could've been a Fly Girl on In Living Color. I never made out with Alex, but we bumped and grinded on the dance floor.'" [] And Carine Roitfeld made the front of i-D. [] Isaac Mizrahi didn't put on a show this season. But he did shoot his spring collection in a beautiful lookbook. [] Alexa Chung's Madewell collection for spring is, as always, almost infuriatingly cute. [] Since John Galliano was found guilty of hate speech for making racist and anti-Semitic comments, the blog Humor Chic decided to make him this very official racism license. []In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.A new biography of Coco Chanel sheds more light on her wartime activities, and the house of Chanel seems to be bracing itself for backlash. What was ol' Gabrielle up to during World War II? Palling around with Nazis at the Ritz, basically — but the house of Chanel is denying that its founder and namesake spied for the German regime, and that she was actually anti-Semitic. Coco Chanel had an affair with Hans Gunther von Dincklage, a Nazi military intelligence officer and immediate subordinate of Joseph Goebbels, during World War II, and was close with Walter Schellenberg, the Nazi head of foreign intelligence; she also sought to wrest control of the Chanel company from her Jewish business partners, the Wertheimers, under the Nazi anti-Jewish ownership laws. (She failed because the Wertheimers had secretly transferred ownership of the company to a Christian prior to the Nazi invasion of France.) Coco Chanel lived in Switzerland for nine years after the war's end, in part to avoid prosecution as a collaborator; although her ties to various Nazi figures have long been well-known, the author of Sleeping with the Enemy: Coco Chanel's Secret War has added significant original research to our understanding of that period of her life. The book even makes the claim that Coco Chanel herself was a Nazi spy. Author Hal Vaughan , "I was looking for something else and I come across this document saying 'Chanel is a Nazi agent, her number is blah, blah, blah and her pseudonym is Westminster.' I look at this again and I say, 'What the hell is this?' I couldn't believe my eyes! Then I really started hunting through all of the archives, in the United States, in London, in Berlin and in Rome and I come across not one, but 20, 30, 40 absolutely solid archival materials on Chanel and her lover, Baron Hans Gunther von Dincklage, who was a professional Abwehr spy." Modern-day Chanel's response? "She would hardly have formed a relationship with the family of the owners or counted Jewish people among her close friends and professional partners such as the Rothschild family, the photographer Irving Penn or the well-known French writer Joseph Kessel had these really been her views." So, basically, she had Jewish friends. Chanel also denies that Coco Chanel spied for the Nazi regime, calls the timing of her relationship with Dincklage "unfortunate" but points out that his mother was English (as though that mattered), and asserts that she approached Winston Churchill about "acting as an intermediary between the Allies and the Germans for a peace settlement known as Operation Modelhut." That makes Operation Modelhut sound pretty benign, but the truth is a lot more complicated; the Times of London Operation Modelhut a "Nazi plot" that was to use Coco Chanel as "bait." [] The incredible photographer Deborah Turbeville is working on some kind of project with Donna Karan, to be unveiled during London Fashion Week. [] French actress Léa Seydoux, who plays Gabrielle the antiques dealer in Midnight in Paris, was once an American Apparel model. Link NSFW, because American Apparel, duh. [] Current Playboy cover model Daisy Lowe looks really cute in these promotional shots for her mother Pearl's latest (Stevie Nicks-inspired!) collection for Peacocks. [] Steven Meisel shot plus-size model Candice Huffine for the September issue of W. Huffine got two shots in an editorial that also featured Karen Elson, Carolyn Murphy, and Raquel Zimmerman. Link NSFW. [] Heidi Klum made the September cover of Harper's Bazaar's Russian edition. [] Esperanza Spalding is on the cover of the next issue of T. [] There are pictures of Anna Dello Russo's collection for Macy's INC brand. Unfortunately, there are no photos of the AMAZING SUNGLASSES that the models were wearing at the preview last night, so you'll have to take our word for their existence (and amazingness). [] Giambattista Valli has signed on to produce a collection for Macy's, too. [] In case you are or a man of your acquaintance is in need of a pair of pleated-front, elasticized-cuff khaki pants, Dockers is rolling out a series of designer collaborations over the coming season, including pieces from T by Alexander Wang, Michael Bastian, and Patrik Ervell. [] There's an article in this week's Times Style section on the excellent blog , which writer Jon Caramanica calls "now one of the foremost online repositories of black style." [] Thakoon is selling this lightweight wool plaid scarf for $250, and 100% of the proceeds will go to aid for the millions of people affected by Somalia's famine. The country is currently experiencing its worst drought in 50 years. []In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.Diane von Furstenberg presented her spring collection yesterday — but pretty much all anybody is talking about are the weird little glasses that several of the models sported. The glasses are a new product which Google has awkwardly named Glass, singular. Company co-founder Sergey Brin was on hand (he even took a bow on the runway with von Furstenberg and her creative director, Yvan Mispelaere) to explain the glasses, which take the form of a kind of headset with a small glass rectangle that hangs over the user's right eye. That glass can record and play back video and photos, display text messages, and do other things that sound distracting and/or dangerous. (Friends don't let friends glass and drive!) The glasses will cost around $1500 when they hit stores. "The goal is to really connect you to digital life without really taking you away from real life," says Brin. [] This weekend on Naomi Campbell's to-do list: join Twitter, open the Zac Posen show. [@] In other news of dramatic casting, Alexander Wang had Liberty Ross in his show. "To be honest I was totally terrified," said Ross afterwards. In case you hadn't noticed, Ross's film director husband just cheated on her with that girl from Panic Room, cuing a Category 5 paparazzi storm. "I hadn't actually been out of my house for seven weeks so I was really anxious. But it felt amazing." [] Let us all now ponder Hedi Slimane's first ad for Yves Saint Laurent — or as he's rebranding the house's luxury line, Saint Laurent Paris — and what it means. There is no clothing in it. [] This here is the front page of the French daily Libération. The story is about luxury tycoon Bernard Arnault, and the headline translates more or less to "Piss off, you rich asshole." Arnault's recent petition for Belgian citizenship has drawn ire in France as a tax dodge as the country considers a new tax structure for the ultrarich — though the Louis Vuitton Moët Hennessy head says he will retain his French citizenship and claims he will remain a resident of France for tax purposes whether or not he is granted a Belgian passport. Some of France's most high-profile citizens, like singer Johnny Hallyday, are famous tax dodgers, maintaining residency in countries like Monaco or Switzerland, and this is a sore point for the French electorate. President François Hollande yesterday suggested that Arnault's citizenship application was unpatriotic. The headline is a play on the French insult "pauvre con" (literally, "poor asshole," but figuratively something more like "goddamn asshole"), and an allusion to former president Nicolas Sarkozy's famous insult to a member of the public who didn't want to shake his hand ("Casse toi, alors, pauvre con"). Arnault has announced he is suing Libération for "public insult." [] As we for ourselves on Saturday, Lena Dunham debuted a new haircut at the Rachel Antonoff presentation, which she attended (Dunham is pictured here with Antonoff and her brother Jack, a musician whom Dunham is dating). Shooting had wrapped on season two of Dunham's Girls the night before, and she cut it herself the next morning. Dunham says she was inspired by Carey Mulligan. [] "Accessories are like vitamins to fashion — as such, you should use them liberally," says Anna Dello Russo. That doesn't really...make...sense, but here are some images from her H&M collection anyway. [] Here are the covers Christian Lacroix designed for Tank. [] Mindy Kaling: a fashion week must-follow. Also, Aziz Ansari. Fashion needs more people who can laugh at themselves. [@]When I arrived last night at — a meet 'n' greet for fashion worker bees and bankers — a woman from Merill Lynch was being unceremoniously turned away at the door for violating the event's gender code."This is a private event for the women of fashion and the men of finance," explained the woman with the clipboard. "And you are a woman who works in finance!" The rejected banker — who, though this should hardly matter, was young, attractive, and wearing a nice cocktail dress such as would have suited the crowd — stepped away from the velvet rope crestfallen. I walked right in, even though I had no cocktail dress, and was not even wearing heels, because I am a woman who works in fashion. The bar was crowded. Then it became more so. When the "tasting hour" designated by the gluten-free vodka sponsor ran out and I asked for a glass of water, the bartender said he could only sell me bottled water for $5. I protested, and he turned to the woman to my right, who had worn a cocktail dress and platform sandals, who desired a vodka cranberry. But while he was filling her glass with ice, he waved his gun over my empty tumbler and pressed 'water.' The noisy, tacky, tiki-themed environs of this particular East Midtown bar motivate one to appreciate even the smallest of mercies. There's really no reason for me to go to such a thing as Fashion Meets Finance. I don't need to "meet" anyone, and even if I did, I have always specialized in dating men who earn in the multiple thousands of dollars. I'm sure, if the need arose, I would fall for another one of those in a trice. This assortment of Windsor knots and Harvard degrees and clicking high heels is not my crowd. I suppose I wanted to know for sure that Fashion Meets Finance — tagline: "Ladies, you don't need to worry that the cute guy at the bar works in advertising!" — actually exists, because it seems like the kind of thing that is too disappointing, or perhaps too wretched, a statement of human cravenness and of contemporary gender politics to be true. I suppose I was acting in the grand tradition of Jezebels who . But mainly, though, I never pass up an opportunity to use a good fake name. My friend who joined me agreed that was the evening's main selling point — she often passes herself off as , the population who actually reads Wharton being apparently small and not generally given to standing on street corners with a clipboard and an earpiece, the better to sneer at women with advanced degrees in economics. As I was departing the mosh pit scene at the bar, a middle aged man with frizzy hair tapped me on the shoulder. "Do you work in fashion? Because i just finished reading an excellent book about the fashion industry. Called ." He went on to explain that he had been to Fashion Meets Finance's several past events — this one was dubbed "The Recession Is Over!" — and always had a good time, because as "an outgoing person," he can always meet other outgoing people. I escaped, but not before he had told me that he had always wanted to go to the country where I grew up, New Zealand, and heartily advised me to see "a wonderful, funny movie about fashion," Brüno. Then I talked to a Spaniard who worked for UBS but with whom I had difficulty communicating, between my accent and his. "I have heard New Zealand is very beautiful," he cooed, before adding, "maybe I go there some day if I can get the vacation time." I trudged back to the bar for another surreptitious water. If there was one thing that was surprising about the crowd, it was that it seemed to lack a certain fashionable quality. While one would hardly expect freelance styling assistants for the European Vogues to journey up to E. 50th Street on a Thursday night, the "fashion" representatives all embodied a certain value of "good taste" that true fashion types, in my experience, put little stock in; everyone had on a tasteful dress, tasteful shoes, and small amounts of tasteful jewelry, and while everyone looked very nice, I began to wonder just how many of these people really worked in fashion. Where were the plain white tees styled just so? The handbags? The ironic 90s floral prints? The scarf stolen from your mother? The vintage? The bar looked as if it had drawn an entirely typical bon-chic-bon-goût Murray Hill crowd and deposited it 10 blocks northward. Some of the men were imposters, too: one admitted to working in — gasp — real estate. I soon found myself talking to a Jamaican who'd grown up in Crown Heights about that neighborhood's gentrification, and also the gentrification of Harlem and Fort Greene, a topic in which, as a white resident of Harlem, I am somewhat personally invested. "My friend who lives in Harlem called me the other day, said the neighborhood, it's gone," smiled the man. "He passed a white girl on the street at 2 a.m. and he said she didn't even look scared. That's when you know!" I could have pointed out that yesterday on my block seven squad cars chased and arrested a boy who looked to be about 12 years old, and then arrested his 15-year-old brother when the brother tried to calm their screaming mother, but I did not see the good in even indirectly reminding anyone who grew up in Crown Heights of the bad old days. The man started off in business running a tailor shop, so instead we discussed two-button vs. three-button suits, eventually finding common ground in double vents and natural fibers. I told him to Google , and when I asked why he'd come to Fashion Meets Finance, he paused and said, "I guess I just wanted to know this is really there," which sounded wise enough. Then I met an Indian man who said he'd recently corresponded with a woman from the New Zealand consulate, in the trade delegation, named Georgina, did I happen to know her? The Countess Olenska and I decided to talk to a young group of clean-cut banker types who seemed especially secure; their ties were wider than anyone else's, they broadcast WASPish entitlement and lacrosse expertise and looked like they probably browsed porn on their daily commutes to Connecticut. Also one of them had just done that thing where he thumped his beer square on a friend/victim's bottle's neck and his beer fizzed all over the place, oh yeah brah. The countess and I walked over, looked at the men, looked at each other, then looked again, more awkwardly, at these laughing golden boys — and immediately I knew that all the liquid eyeliner and velvet ropes and jet planes in the world will not stop and have not stopped me from remaining the person I was in high school. There's a certain kind of popularity that, if you should be so lucky as to experience it at 15 or 16 or 17, deposits in its wake a sense of pure social mastery that never really leaves you. And there's a certain kind of awkwardness, bodily shame, and tongue-tied single-sex-high-school befuddledness in what I still think of as "mixed" social situations that precludes any kind of innate suavity and leaves one always at the mercy of frizzy-haired shoulder-tappers. So we didn't talk to the boys. Except, then, somehow one did peel off — tall, Princeton, hedge fund — and he told me about how he grew up in Kentucky, and this year got to see the Derby horses in their stables before the race. His trainer friend informed him that virtually all professional race horses are doped. "They call it 'medicine,'" he explained, "They say, 'This horse needs its medicine.'" I dreamed of cracked-out race horses with enlarged hearts when I fell asleep last night. I don't think I'll be going to Fashion Meets Finance again. [FMF]In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.Yet another victim of the New of the World phone-hacking scandal has emerged: Elle MacPherson's former business advisor and friend, Mary-Ellen Field. Field testified before the official inquiry into the scandal that she was fired by the supermodel, who wrongly believed Field was leaking personal information about her to the tabloid press. In fact, the News of the World had hacked MacPherson's voicemail. Even more strange, before letting Field go, MacPherson allegedly pressured Field into going to rehab for alcoholism — which, as the clinic staff would later confirm, she didn't suffer from: "I phoned Elle. For the first time ever she was really grouchy with me. 'I can't have you speaking to the media', she said." Field said the model told her at a meeting shortly afterwards: "'I know what's it like to be an alcoholic.' I was speechless." She added that Macpherson "broke me down" until Field reluctantly agreed to attend a rehab clinic in Arizona, Meadows Clinic, used by Macpherson, describing that decision as "a big mistake." "Elle made it out like it was a leisure facility but it was a grade-1 psychiatric facility with men with guns in holsters parading about so it was fairly horrible." After Field returned from the Meadows Clinic, MacPherson fired her. Shortly thereafter she was fired from a firm where she'd been a consultant, on the grounds that clients no longer trusted her. Field says MacPherson never apologized, or even contacted her, since the hacking was uncovered. [] Meanwhile MacPherson, who was one of the very first celebrity hacking victims identified, says she believes she's handled the whole situation very well by never speaking publicly about it. "I believe I've made the right choice," she says. "And I made that choice years ago, because I did not want to perpetuate stories. I did not want to be involved, I did not enter into the discussions whatsoever." [] One of Hailee Steinfeld's Miu Miu ads has been banned in the U.K. by the Advertising Standards Authority — the same body that banned Dakota Fanning's sexually suggestive Marc Jacobs ad — on the grounds that the 14-year-old actress is depicted lying on some railway tracks. And that's not safe. Kids, don't lie on railroad tracks just because Hailee Steinfeld did it in a magazine! [] Rodarte guest-edited the new issue of A Magazine. The brand put a grizzly on the cover, and Kirsten Dunst, John Baldessari, and Joss Whedon inside. [] Freja Beha Erichsen and Arizona Muse, who together make a very smiley couple, were photographed while shooting the spring Chloé campaign this past weekend. That's what happens when you book two famous models to shoot a campaign at the Chateau Marmont in Los Angeles, we suppose. [] Sasha Pivovarova did some drawings of flowers and women, which Gap printed on some underwear and loungewear. In stores now. [] Here's Rachel Bilson's line for ShoeMint. [] This is the new Keds clothing line, the first in the shoe company's history. It goes on sale at Opening Ceremony this Friday — we so thought Opening Ceremony would be above doing anything special for Black Friday, but what do we know! — and retails for $48-$400. [] Huh. So this is a completely see-through top, worn by a bra-free lady. Kudos for refusing to be a toady for Big Lingerie, but seriously? We would not wear this shirt to eat lunch. During the daytime. On Park Avenue. (Or anywhere.) Toplessness: in style? [ via ]In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.How disappointing to note that the Gap's handsome khaki pieces, solicited from CFDA-nominated designers and , are up to a size 10. Larger fashion lovers are supposed to content themselves with 's hats? [] I was just "talking" with Dodai about what to do for a Rag Trade lede. "Dodai," I said. "Karl Lagerfeld some krazy shit again!" "Hmm," said Dodai. "I know we highlighted the Adele-is-fat bit," I said. "Right." "But there are so many other bons mots! 'People in magazines are 50% bimbo and 50% pregnant women.' 'If I was a woman in Russia I would be a lesbian, as the men are very ugly.'" "Yeah," said Dodai. "The pregnant women bit was in Dirt Bag as well." "'Nobody wants Greece to disappear, but they have really disgusting habits.'" "What are your other options?" she asked "The Model Alliance launch, haha?" I typed, hesitantly. "Doutzen Kroes, Coco Rocha, Crystal Renn, and a bunch of other models were there. Shalom Harlow came! Plus Robin Lawley and Sarah Stephens. It was amazing." "I think that might be better," said Dodai. "You think? But I helped organize it." I said. "I know," she replied. "I mean, it's a bit of a weird thing to do — make myself the lede." "Nah, do that!" said Dodai. Hmm, I thought. Let me check Getty to see if any of are available under our subscription. That photographer who I saw last night who remembered me from a Karen Walker show in, like, 2008 — was he shooting for Getty? I know someone was there for Getty. Either way, he was a really nice guy. Hmm. No subscription photos. Oh well. Hey, look, the Gloss posted a nice one! Let's go with that. Oh, and look what Ashley Cardiff about the Model Alliance: Models are still a work force and still deserve the same basic rights as any teacher, waiter, blogger, plumber… Unfortunately, models are often reluctant to speak out when confronted with inappropriate behavior or financial exploitation for a litany of reasons, not the least of which is a constant reminder of their own expendability. Why complain about sexual harassment if there's someone even younger and thinner waiting to take your place? Salient points. Couldn't agree more. A pretty good take on the Model Alliance, all told (which in case you haven't figured out by now, is a new nonprofit dedicated to giving models a voice in the American fashion industry, an organization on whose board I am proud to sit, and whose launch party last night at the Standard Hotel I helped to plan, and which I am now writing about because Karl Lagerfeld's latest kerrrrazy kuote was too kold for this news cycle). Ooh, there was also a piece on Luckymag.com. The Model Alliance "seeks to improve the conditions in which models work and live," wrote John Jannuzzi: From the outside, modeling looks like a glamorous, effortless and "cushy" job. But like anything in this business, it's not always that easy. A grueling schedule (from shoots to multiple fashion weeks), marginal labor rights (they're typically freelancers), mounting bills (yes, in many cases, models actually end up owing money to agencies) and countless cases of exploitation, suddenly the profession doesn't seem so easy as, "walking from one end of the platform to the other." Yep, also accurate. Looks like Reuters got our press release, too: "The idea of models organizing may seem frivolous or, worse, downright funny — models are certainly not the people you picture when you think of child labor or bad working conditions," said former model and fashion writer Jenna Sauers. "There's nothing funny about a work force that is overwhelmingly young, female and impoverished, working for some of fashion's wealthiest, most powerful brands." Oh yes. I remember when I wrote that. Fun times. Last night, Sara Ziff — the Model Alliance founder, and the co-director of the acclaimed documentary Picture Me — spoke eloquently about the need for the enforcement of existing child labor and contract laws, something the Model Alliance supports. "I have been very fortunate in my career," she said. But Sara — who started modeling when she was 14 — also described feeling unable to say no to work that conflicted with her educational obligations, being put on the spot to do shoot in the nude at castings from a young age, and having unauthorized charges levied against her earnings by her agency. I and the other board members, Susan Scafidi and Dorian Warren spoke, and so did our co-host for the evening, Coco Rocha. Coco read a long list of names of models who couldn't be there last night, including Karlie Kloss, Jessica White, and Behati Prinsloo, but who she said wanted to go on record as Model Alliance supporters. Oh, and Sara and Susan were Brian Lehrer this morning! That was awesome. "Did you see ? because this could also be a lede maybe," typed Dodai. "Yes I did see that," I wrote back. "Aw, now I'm writing a Model Alliance thing. Can this be the one time I do something weirdly self-referential?" There was a pause. "OK." So there you have it. Watch our video, visit our , like us , follow us , why not talk about us IRL with your actual friends? The Model Alliance is now officially live. And the real work of changing fashion for the better begins today. /soapbox [, , , ] Stella McCartney recorded an anti-leather video for PETA. [] The campaign for Kenzo's spring collection — the first designed by Opening Ceremony's Carol Lim and Humberto Leon — stars an all-black cast of models. [] Even if you're not going to New York fashion week, you can still appreciate the creativity that goes into some of the best invitations. 3.1 Phillip Lim's is a pop-up card of the New York skyline. [] Vogue Paris editor Emmanuelle Alt dances and lip-syncs to "Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go" in this video to announce the Web redesign of her magazine. We just spent about five very satisfying minutes imagining Anna Wintour doing this in honor of the new Vogue archive. [] Casting director Douglas Perrett shared some old Polaroids of famous models when they were just starting out. Here are Miranda Kerr, Chanel Iman, and the late Daul Kim. Perrett says of meeting Iman, "[I] realized how young these kids are. She needed a hug that day." Perrett's forthcoming book is called Wild Things. []Before , there were reams of stories offering dismal outlooks on the party scene. Nobody was having an after party. Nothing would be the same. The Economy. Etc. I haven't found this the case. WWD not to throw one of his typical post-show megabashes, as well as the fact that , , and were among those who similarly cancelled their party plans. This week, even the New York Times couldn't seem to resist the convenience of the party-over metaphor, . Welcome to the brave new fashion, where frivolity is out and celebs don't pack the . Except it didn't happen that way. I'm no gadfly compared to some, but I go to the occasional night spot, and I can't say I've noticed any appreciable difference in the quality or tone of revelry on offer this season. Maybe I wasn't going to the echelon of party that was canceled to begin with. But this week it seemed like there was the same familiar mixture of people in day-glo accessories, fedoras, , your boyfriend's also-a-model ex, and cash bars as ever. Perhaps I've always sensed a ticking heart of melancholia at the center of these kinds of gatherings, where the dance floor has air quotes and everyone puts up the tiresome pretense of not mugging for the party photographer, even back when the economy was gaining ground as opposed to ceding it. (But that probably has always said more about me than about my surroundings.) Earlier this week I actually saw in person, and I couldn't help but unabashedly stare at her while I stood waiting to pay $18 for a martini that proved to taste like it had been mixed inside an empty orange juice carton. I also saw a man dressed in chain mail and a guy who had light-up rods, actual spiny, glowing bones, sewn onto the outside of his black gloves, like an extra from Blade Runner. Alexander Wang was being congratulated on the stairs, and someone wanted to go to the Purple party, but someone else was like, "When is ever not at the Beatrice?" and frankly it all felt very September '08, which is to say it felt very much like any other fashion week. It was sniffy noses and ironic flannel and heavy eyeliner. It was Blackberries and coats that looked like muppets killed for a good cause and testing your clout by lighting that cigarette inside. The other night someone who looked about 19 asked who he was shooting for. "I would've recognized your son, I think," she said, semi-apologetically. Every story this season is about how . The narrative is that before, shows were always buoyed by the rising tide of economic good fortune and front-row bold-face names and the parties, they were always terribly glamorous and fun. Now shows are always things you sneak into out of the drudgery of obligation, and when you're caught in the act, you give mealy quotes to the press about how sorry you are, how inconsequential even you recognize it all to be, and how attendance at this particular temple of Baal is unfortunately mandated by your job at this little magazine that covers fashion. And the parties that follow the shows, well, nobody who recognizes the seriousness of Our Straitened Circumstances could possibly acknowledge any interest in such frothy frivolity. Thing is, you could have written that kind of story last season, or any other season for that matter. Models were getting paid in trade last season too, and a great many seasons before. Editors have always been people aware enough to acknowledge some self-doubt on the question of the actual relative importance of this season's heel or bag; the fashion set is not dumb. But nobody in the media would have thought to cast any previous season in any such light. The before/after is a constructed narrative, and it's one I'm just getting a little sick of reading. This industry, which I love, is troubled — nearly 20,000 jobs were lost in textile and apparel manufacturing and retail in the month of January, according to the U.S. Department of Labor, and many designers and stores are struggling across the spectrum of price points — but all the deckchairs on the Titanic rhetoric seems like unwarranted melodrama, simultaneously too dire and not serious enough. (The last recession, in the early 1990s, gave us , , and .) It's too early to write fashion off; and it is, dare I say it, frivolous to do so because of some party that was or wasn't thrown. [WWD] [NY Times] [NY Times] Earlier: In September of 2007, it was that of all the 101 shows that took place during New York fashion week, one third employed zero models of color. Since then, we've to diversity on the every season.We do this here at Jezebel because what we see on the runway — and who wears it — influences the faces we will go on to see in magazine editorials, advertising campaigns, and all the other images the fashion industry will create over the coming season. The models who walk in the shows are working with the stylists who matter, and being seen by the top editors. Those stylists are thinking of the campaigns, editorials, and other jobs they'll be consulting on over the coming months; the editors are thinking of their feature wells and the garments and stories and faces that might fill them. The industry at large is watching these shows and thinking: Who has buzz? Who's that new face? Who do we have to have? The runway is like a hopper that feeds the fashion industry's image-making machine. And the fact is that those images overwhelmingly feature white faces; this, we believe, perpetuates the cycle of marginalization and racism experienced by people of color. Even if, come spring, you don't buy any of the overpriced designer clothes fashion week notionally exists to unveil, and even if you are not a habitual reader of the hard-core fashion magazines, chances are you'll still be bombarded with the perfume ads, the Gap campaigns, and the Maybelline billboards — not to mention the garden variety ladymag editorials — that will stem from this season and its casting. This fashion week, there were 128 New York shows and presentations that were covered by Style.com. (We've always used Style.com as the basis for our data because it publishes look-by-look slideshows, often with models' names included, for a comprehensive swath of New York's shows.) Those 128 shows together presented 4,170 runway looks. That means 4,170 opportunities to choose a woman or girl to model that outfit. 3,410 of those opportunities, or 81.8%, went to white models. That means of course that 760, or 18.2%, went to models who were non-white. Non-white Latina models were used 95 times in all of fashion week, or around 2.3% of the time, and Asian models were used 296 times, or 7.1% of the time. Black models were used 353 times, or 8.4% of the time. Models of other races, like the Moroccan Hind Sahli and the Canadian model Tara Gill, who has Native American heritage, were used 16 times, or 0.4% of the time. Since Jezebel has been been tracking the relative diversity of New York fashion week for so many seasons, I thought I'd try and chart the last few seasons and their numbers. (We did not generate data for Spring/Summer 2009, or Spring/Summer 2010.) You will notice that this season presents a small improvement on six months ago, in terms of its diversity, but that essentially New York fashion week is right back where it was 18 months ago. Lots of people within fashion will tell you that casting models is an extraordinarily complex, creative pursuit, one that requires balancing multiple subjective qualities (does this model give me the right feeling?) with more objective ones (does this model fit the clothes, and can she walk?). Some people that choosing a cast that suits a designer's creative vision is more important than taking even the most basic steps to insure that cast isn't all-white. (At least, the apologists for the status quo prefer to talk about designers and "creative visions" rather than about casting notices that say "No Ethnic Girls" and black models who say they work less than their white friends.) But why is it considered acceptable for a designer's creative vision to not include people of color? Do those designers not want any black or Latino customers either? This season, there were six shows and presentations that included no models of color at all. These included Philosophy di Alberta Ferretti — which is cast by the highly influential casting director Russell Marsh, who also casts for Prada and Miu Miu — as well as Mulberry, Reem Acra, and Doo.Ri. Prada, you will recall, is the Italian global luxury brand that went a decade without casting even a single black model in any of its shows. (This season, Prada had two black models — Jourdan Dunn and Melodie Monrose — present one look apiece in its 41-look collection.) There were also plenty of shows that had all-white casts but for one or two models. Anna Sui, Calvin Klein, Donna Karan, Jeremy Scott, Jill Stuart, Narciso Rodriguez, Rodarte, Diesel Black Gold, and Thakoon are among them. What's worrisome is that that list is thick with some of the most influential and prestigious labels in all of fashion. And they don't seem to see any use for more than a couple token models of color. Mass-market powerhouse Max Azria, via his brands Hervé Leger by Max Azria, Max Azria, and BCBG Max Azria, booked his customary nearly all-white casts, all while he was the "king of diversity in fashion." Who were the designers who did things better? 3.1 Phillip Lim, who hired nine models of color, and Sophie Théallet, who showed 13 of her 32 looks on models of color, were among the buzzed-about younger designers had very diverse casts. Among the old guard, Carolina Herrera (11/52), Oscar de la Renta (13/60), and Diane von Furstenberg (17/50), had the most diverse casts. Rachel Comey, Betsey Johnson, Costello Tagliapietra, Tara Subkoff's relaunched Imitation line, Jason Wu, Christian Siriano, Gwen Stefani's L.A.M.B. line, both Marc Jacobs and Marc by Marc Jacobs, and Richard Chai were also among those labels that valued diversity in their casting. Melodie Monrose, with 19 shows including Tory Burch and Rag & Bone, was fashion week's top black model. Shena Moulton and Joan Smalls, who booked 13 apiece, were second. Moulton was the only black model at Calvin Klein, and Smalls walked for Alexander Wang, Derek Lam, and Michael Kors, among others. The top Asian model at New York fashion week was again Liu Wen, who walked in 18 shows. Fei Fei Sun and Shu Pei Qin had 16 each. Among non-white Latina models, Simone Carvalho booked nine shows, while Juana Burga had a respectable eight. The only models of other ethnic backgrounds to speak of were Hind Sahli, who worked six shows, and Tara Gill, who booked three. Why doesn't fashion — especially multi-national brands whose profitability rests on convincing the largest number of consumers possible to purchase their perfumes, underwear, and diffusion lines, like Calvin Klein — have more consideration for the beauty and worth of people who aren't white? Is New York fashion week plateauing at around 82% white, no matter how much advocacy or consciousness-raising gets done, or how many trend pieces get written about this issue? Will it ever become unacceptable to put on a fashion show in a thoroughly multi-racial city like New York and not hire a single model of color? Will it ever become unacceptable to blame that choice on an alleged "creative vision"? As long as these questions remain, we'll continue to ask them, time and time again, and look for answers in seasons to come. Photo: Model Marilia Dutra passes Samantha Gradoville on Oscar de la Renta's runway. Interns Noorain Khan and Katie Luscombe contributed to this post. Previously: In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.Last night, Sadie and I hiked through Manhattan in unseasonable wind and rain to attend Fashion's Night Out. As the stores opened to the boozehound hordes, we had many experiences that were challenging and puzzling. And some that were fun. At downtown boutique Opening Ceremony, the line stretched down the block. The promised customized cars, out of which designers like Rodarte (a low rider convertible) and Alex Wang (a black van) were to sell their wares were just a row of cars parked cheek by jowl on the side of the narrow street; the real action was in the store, and the entire population of Williamsburg appeared ready to wait upwards of an hour to see it. I texted a friend who works at the store — no response — then screwed up my courage to go talk to the burly security guard at the door. "I'm a reporter," I said, plaintively. "I'm here to write about this!" He looked at me skeptically. I repeated this claim to a small woman in a large fascinator and a complicated dress, who eventually waved me in. New Fashion Rule: If you cannot spell "Azzedine Alaïa", you should not be permitted to sell his shorts for $60. I'd had a weird day at the tents — at one point I was standing next to four people deadpanning conversation, all wearing sunglasses inside — so I called that affable Marxist/skewerer of frivolity/drinker, former Jezebel editor Moe Tkacik. My partner in crime for the night eventually made it into the store, and we were served big cans of Asahi by a smiling bartender in a skintight waistcoat. We looked at the people. We looked at the wares — knits covered in rickrack, jewelry that looked like animal claws — and watched as people lined up to buy Fashion's Night Out t-shirts. We drank our beers and watched the crowd. Later, we made our way to Rag & Bone, the pricey vintage store What Goes Around Comes Around, and a multi-designer sample sale at the TriBeCa Grand hotel. Sadie, on the whole a more dedicated shopper, checked out Opening Ceremony, Prada, Intermix, Banana Republic, Oak, Club Monaco, Madewell (she likes their boots!) and a couple of boutiques. Jenna: So! I was just writing about the scene at Opening Ceremony. What did you think of Opening Ceremony? How long was the line when you got there? Sadie: The line was nuts - all the way down the block, and it didn't seem to be progressing at all. Jenna: I shamelessly blagged my way in as press. Sadie: The whole vibe was unpleasantly "hot club" — down to the letdown of getting in. Jenna: Yes! All it needed was a velvet rope. The bouncers, the clipboard dragons. The boomboom music. It was just like a club, except inside it was brightly lit. And, you know, except that the Beatrice never tolerated anything so unseemly as an actual line outside. Sadie: Well, Banana Republic actually had a 3" velvet rope! Jenna: Wow. Tell me about that — I didn't go there. Sadie: Ha, that was the best: they had the rope, and this poor woman in an evening gown wielding a fan — but then inside it was...Banana Republic. Open late, it's true! Did you get to Intermix? Jenna: No, I missed it. I went to Rag & Bone to see my friend who works there, except the FNO iPhone app sent me to the Christopher St. store. And my friend works at SoHo. Thanks, Style.com! Sadie: Oh, dear. How was R&B otherwise? Hipstered out? Jenna: Actually, it had a very pleasant down-home kind of feel. I rendez-vous'd there with some friends who had just come from the gallery openings in Chelsea, and one of them lives in Japan. He kept on comparing the store's aesthetic to Japanese clothing, which I can actually totally see. Sadie: Oh, definitely. Were folks shopping? Jenna: You know, that classic pieces reworked and finessed, done with an eye for design, but subtle, kinda thing. But it was strange at the same time, because the store was made over as an Irish pub. No, I saw very few shoppers. But they had a fiddle band! And honeyed whiskey. And Guinness, from an actual keggerator. (I think.) Sadie: Ooh, nice! Jenna: Moe and I got to talking about keggerators, because she used to live in a house that had one. Sadie: I got insufficient drinks, considering. Jenna: (Dude room-mates, of course.) Rag & Bone also had this neat gravity-fed whiskey autodispenser. Very technological. Sadie: Ha! Now: what did you wear?! Jenna: Important question, which I spent a long time thinking about before leaving the house. I wore: a green 1940s bouclé jacket with balloon sleeves and a nipped waist. It has a totally shattered lining — which meant I got it cheap — but the greatest part is it's got an awesome collar. It's self fabric on one side, and rabbit fur (I think?) on the other. And you can either let the collar fall open across your shoulders, and it looks like these awesome, structured, furry shoulderpads on the outside of your jacket. Or you can tie the collar up tighter and it forms a big muffler around your face. It came in handy because it was so cold last night! I wore it with jeans and comfortable shoes. What did YOU wear? :P Sadie: Well, I changed from my actual work clothes into a fake business costume, trying to convey that "coming-from-a-cool-office" vibe. I wore this swell pair of very high-waisted pleated plaid trousers, apparently the former possession of an elderly society matron, now in a nursing home. They are about 40% ridiculous. With them, a plain blouse and some very high vintage heels. Oh, and I cut myself a possibly ill-judged ragged bang just before running out the door. Jenna: Oooh, last-minute haircut. I like that. I trimmed my own hair myself the other day because it was getting shaggy in back — I'm trying to turn my pixie into a messy bob, Karen Elson c.a. 1997 kind of thing. Naturally, I thought of your post and all kinds of disastrous self-inflicted haircuts of years past. Sadie: Yes, but the temptation always proves irresistible! Did you see any really noteworthy looks? (Besides those dudes voguing wildly in the window of Opening Ceremony.) Jenna: I saw two great looks, actually: I dragged Moe, Japan-man, this German guy, and everyone else I was with to What Goes Around Comes Around, where they were almost out of booze but had amazing black and white cookies. And this shopgirl had on the perfect pair of jean shorts, not cut-offs but actual high-waisted vintage shorts, and a really simple silk printed blouse. And cowboy boots. It was very straightforward but the pieces looked fantastic together, and she looked comfortable, especially for someone who was standing around in 40 degree weather in shorts. Then, at the sample sale at the TriBeCa Grand, there was a beautiful woman wearing a teal suede vintage mini-dress. It had shoulder pads and a scoop neck, and it fit her perfectly. She said she'd bought it at a thrift store in Palm Beach for $4. Sadie: I saw one girl whose look was so hip as to verge on dowdy, and I loved it: she had sort of Cameron-Diaz-in-Being-John-Malkovich hair, big glasses, and this maxi dress. She also looked furious. I spied Lynn Yaeger, in what looked like vintage lace but might have been partly Prada. Most folks were too self-consciously fashion-y in cage heels and leggings etc. Jenna: Oh, man, a Lynn Yaeger sighting. I am so jealous. That Cameron Diaz in Being John Malkovich look is so hard to pull off, I always mentally nod in respect when I see it even attempted. I agree, though, in general the crowd was very skinny-destroyed-jeans, studs-on-things, chunky-heels, blouson-top, "I-totally-just-threw-this-on," either all-black or whoa-random-colors. Kind of a boring look. Sadie: I complimented her, which was maybe breaking the fourth wall, because she was clearly put out by my importuning. My blouse got ripped in the crush. But hopefully everyone thought it was a deliberate twist on buttoned-up menswear. Punk edge, you know. Jenna: me: Absolutely. So where else did you go? Sadie: Saw a little of the Rapture's "set" at Prada...glimpsed the Miller sisters... Jenna: Spy Grace Coddington? Sadie: No! Sadly. I bet she left; I don't blame her — having to strand around these stores for 6 hours seems very tedious. Jenna: Absolutely. Not least because nobody was buying much. Sadie: I grabbed drinks at Madewell and Club Monaco, as they were en route to the hot dog truck. Jenna: I guess they are hoping heavily for a sort of follow-through, now the seal has been broken. I did not have any food all night! Aside from those black and white cookies. Sadie: One assumes. Tell me how much actual shopping you saw, because I witnessed very little! Jenna: Plenty o' booze, though. Moe and I did well on that score. Very little shopping. Some people were trying things on at the TriBeCa Grand. But most of the stores I went to were mobbed because of the entertainment/gawking/novelty factor. Sadie: The atmosphere was really not conducive to shopping. And some places served red wine! Jenna: Not because of actual sales opportunities. Sadie: How would you characterize the atmosphere, overall? And the crowd? (Relative to the hype.) me: It was really cool, actually, I enjoyed myself more than I thought I would. It was definitely fun — if occasionally ridiculous. I saw a woman in a leopard print dress and a (different) leopard print scarf at What Goes Around Comes Around. She tried on a blue sequined jumpsuit I had just browsed on the rack. It cost something like $2,500. And the Opening Ceremony scene was just — nuts. The camera set-up in the store window, the prices of things, the mayhem. Sadie: I mean, that was frankly kind of my idea of hell. That's why I don't go to "clubs." Jenna: did you see that cardigan by Rodarte at Opening Ceremony, folded up, with two tags? One was printed and said $2,800. The other was written by hand in highlighted sharpie, and said DO NOT PICK UP RODARTE. It was the most heartbreaking thing ever. I took a picture. Sadie: YES! But overall: yeah, kind of fun. There was definitely a carnival atmosphere on the streets. Jenna: So Moe and I went over to the mannequins and TOUCHED THE RODARTE. Rodarte is soft, it turns out. Sadie: NO!!! Jenna: Yup, we did. Sadie: Did officious publicists scream at you? Did the guys in the window stop voguing? DID YOU HURT THE ECONOMY? Jenna: No! We just pawed at the pretty gothic-Stevie Nicks dresses until we were satisfied. Then drank more Asahi. Did you buy anything? Sadie: Nope! (Well, except the hot dog.) Jenna: I bought a gorgeous Marios Schwab dress from a vintage seller at the TriBeCa Grand. me: it's black, billowy chiffon, with polarfleece sleeves, and a strange technofabric-and-elastic boned harness that comes over the shoulders and clicks in front with a — one of those closures they use on backpacks or fanny packs, generally with poly webbing. You know? Or on bicycle helmets. It was really cool, in a sort of techno-gothic way. I'm wearing it right now! It's warm. Best of all, it was only $50. But I only had $20, so I had to get my Opening Ceremony worker friend to spot me $30 from his hidden stash of emergency money. As he said, it was clearly a Fashion Emergency. (Yuk, yuk, yuk!) Sadie: That is the perfect thing to buy at a fashion event. (Besides a hot dog.) Wear it next year — maybe we can skip the lines at O.C. Assuming this hasn't fixed the economy, that is.In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.I , and I haven't delivered. But read on for a spot of mid-afternoon nudity, S&M, red-lit bedrooms, a boy in a cage, and the ethereal, horrifying Lara. First, the much-anticipated Nan Goldin shoot. Goldin almost never shoots fashion these days — I think I saw an editorial for a German children's magazine included in the International Center of Photography's current "Weird Beauty" fashion photography exhibit, which probably comprises, along with this story, her total fashion output of the last five years — so seeing her work with such a versatile model is special. The shoot is raw and the colors are saturated. The whole thing looks moody, like stills from some slightly bygone film. Excuse the prominent gutters in these scans; I was selfishly trying to keep the issue intact, because it's so beautiful. I want this Alexander Wang sweater. And the attitude to wear it. Unfortunately my prospects of developing the wherewithal to fund or develop either are slim. Now, the Steven Klein editorial, entitled "Lara Fiction Noire," is intense. It's set in some kind of dingy concrete warehouse, and opens with a shot of Lara Stone in Dolce & Gabbana underwear, handcuffed by her ankles to a bedframe. (It in the same pose, apparently by Steven Meisel, provenance unknown.) The male model co-stars (Lara's victims? kidnappers? playmates?) are Travis Hanson and Doug Porter. It gets ever more disturbing as the disguises come into play. And then the weapons. Not to mention the disturbing sense of observing a ménage-à-trois taking place amidst an air of violence. The ambiguity of the locus of control here, my own uncertainty as to which person has the power, gives me a strong feeling of unease. The above five images were all included in the magazine itself — but they do not comprise the entire story. Another three pictures were apparently spiked by French Vogue. Klein with the helpful legend "UNCENSORED" in big, red type. And the out-takes are doozies. I am almost too disturbed by this violent flesh-eaten zombie model car-crash event that Lara, in the driver's seat, is taking totally in stride, to frame my thoughts into words. But I also feel like this is the most affecting and thought-provoking editorial in the entire issue. This is in the register of a David Lynch film, full of frightful imagery and the barest hints of a plot more horrifying than any slasher flick. What does it mean? Who has the power? Why is that man's face covered in blood? For some reason, I find this one scarier than the one with the male model who might as well be a burn victim or someone Lara recently flayed and ate. Lara just looks so serene, so at peace with the hell around her, it's chilling. (Also, what happened to her stocking?) This is like a nightmare, come to life inside a magazine, and it's some of the most moving work I've seen from Klein in years. I'm transfixed and appalled and exhilerated and exquisitely, perfectly disturbed, all at once. Like any art form, I suppose it's not the role of fashion to make anyone comfortable. Luckily it's almost the end of the day; I need a drink after all that. I might nurse it as I rewatch this behind-the-scenes video, which Klein also just uploaded to his site. Seeing the bloodied male model stirring slightly as Klein shoots is somehow all the more disturbing. Earlier: Related: [Official Site]The top row of shirts is by Forever 21. The bottom row is by a small California-based label called Trovata. Welcome to a peek behind the curtain at secretive, cult-y, and very rapidly growing fast-fashion chain Forever 21.It's always a bad sign when, on a store tour with a retailer's head of marketing, a reporter sees a pair of shoes on the shelf that look exactly like the pair she has on. Except the identi-shoes are a different brand, aren't real leather, and cost less than a quarter of what she paid for them. "You should buy another pair here," suggests the marketing exec when the reporter, BusinessWeek's Susan Berfield, points this out. (Marketing execs are so unflappable.) Although Forever 21 cooperated with BusinessWeek's story, the company wouldn't allow Berfield to even set foot in its design and merchandising headquarters, which are housed in a building of their own on Forever 21's corporate campus, a building with its own security. "The windows are covered with blinds," writes Berfield. Her requests to go inside "were met with laughs by Forever 21's representatives." "Their design is swathed in mystery," says Susan Scafidi, a professor of copyright law at Fordham University Law School and director of the Fashion Law Institute. "But it probably looks a bit like a crime scene, with the chalk outline of the garments they're copying." Forever 21 is a $3 billion chain that counts 477 stores in 19 countries and around 35,000 employees; it has been expanding aggressively during the recession, opening enormous new stores in spaces abandoned by retreating retailers like Saks, Circuit City, and Mervyns. Forever 21 expects to open another 75 stores in 2011. The company was founded and is still owned by Do Won and Jin Sook Chang, Korean immigrants to Los Angeles. Do Won Chang has said he got the idea when he was working at a gas station, and noticed that all the nice cars were owned by people in the rag trade; Jin Sook Chang says that she went to a mountain one morning to pray and God told her she should open a store and that she would be successful. Jin Sook is in charge of whatever it is goes on in that merchandise building. Her husband handles everything else. Their daughters, Linda and Esther Chang, both have high-powered positions within the company despite only being in their twenties, and are expected to take over eventually. Linda wears Forever 21, but mixes it with Chanel. A lot of weird things stand out about the company culture. For one, there's the whole Evangelical Christian thing: "Every decision that they made has been with thoughtful prayer," says Linda. Mr. and Mrs. Chang attend a daily 5:30 a.m. prayer meeting at the Ttokamsa Mission Church when they're in town; he also leads Bible study, and she's a deacon. "I think they get a lot of business ideas and insight during early morning prayer time," Pastor Ken Choe says in an e-mail. According to him, they've contributed millions of dollars to missions around the world and regularly go on missions themselves, including to Afghanistan, India, and Pakistan. They've told their daughters that when they retire, they want to devote themselves fully to the church. "Mr. Chang said he would have been a missionary if this hadn't worked out," says Linda. "This supports that. This is part of their missionary vision." Berfield reports that there are Bibles at the company's headquarters, and it's generally understood that in order to advance within the company, one should be "saved." And then there are the lawsuits. Turns out that having a brand new selection of $19.80 rayon blazers and $23.80 pleather shoes delivered by the ton daily is not easily achieved without ending up on the wrong side of labor laws. Forever 21 used to manufacture most of its clothing in Southern California, using a variety of local suppliers. The reasons were simple: Until 2005, an international textile trade agreement offered some measure of protection to the U.S. apparel industry and made outsourcing more expensive, and domestic manufacture also allowed for shorter lead times and a nimbler response to customer demand. But there are also labor laws in the U.S. And in 2001, Asian Pacific American Legal Center and the Garment Worker Center sued the company on behalf of 19 workers who alleged they had not been paid legally required minimum wages and overtime. The lawsuit spawned a three-year-long boycott of the company and was the subject of an Emmy-winning documentary, Made in LA. Forever 21 eventually settled the suit (the terms are confidential). "It was a difficult time for them," Esther Chang says of her parents' reaction to the lawsuit. Since then, the Changs have moved a lot of Forever 21's production to countries like China, India, Pakistan, and Vietnam. Still, Berfield finds one L.A. factory where workers earn 12 cents apiece to sew vests that retail for $13.80: The California Broadway Trade Center sits on the edge of the garment district, across from the derelict Rialto Theater and just down the street from new lofts built in the old Union Bank. It's a nine-story building that houses at least 80 of these factories. At the loading dock, scraps of paper are taped to the wall, listing in Spanish the jobs available that day. The building looks uncared for, but not decrepit. Some of the doors to these factories are open, making it possible to walk around unannounced. In one, on the top floor, with no company name on the door, about 30 people are sewing gray cotton vests for Forever 21 in a small, hot room. Many of them have stuffed scraps of fabric into their noses to block the particles of material floating in the air. They're just finishing up a one-week, 10,000-piece order for which the seamstresses earn about 12 cents apiece, according to Guadalupe Hernandez, a longtime garment worker in Los Angeles. If they sew 66 vests an hour, they'll earn minimum wage. Oh, and there's also the whole ripping off other people's intellectual property thing. Forever 21 has confidentially settled more than 50 Forever 21 lawsuits with designers who have accused it of stealing their intellectual property. The only suit to make it to an open trial was Trovata's, at which Jin Sook Chang variously claimed on the witness stand that she didn't know what percentage of the company she and her husband owned, if there were any other shareholders, or even what her company's annual sales were. Trovata's lawyers, meanwhile, turned up evidence that the Changs, through various holding companies and investment vehicles, in fact owned or part-owned some of their biggest "independent" suppliers — the same suppliers Forever 21 attempts to publicly distance itself from whenever labor rights violations or copyright violations emerge from the production supply chain. Diane Von Furstenberg, Anna Sui — who once guests at her fashion show t-shirts that read "Forever WANTED: Don Cassidy and The Sundance Jin" that quoted Exodus 20:15, "Thou shalt not steal" — and Anthropologie are among the other designers who have won settlements from the company. Forever 21 tends to avoid knocking off large and well-protected fashion companies, like Chanel or Louis Vuitton Moët Hennessy, both of which are notorious for aggressively policing their copyrights. Forever 21 knocks off smaller, less established labels — like Trovata, Alexander Wang, and Foley + Corinna, whose printed maxi dress is shown here next to its Forever 21 copy — because those brands are less likely to be able to mount a vigorous legal defense. Berfield also talks to a designer, Virginia Johnson, who saw a knock-off of one of her skirts for sale at Forever 21; when her lawyer contacted the company, "he learned that the company had a policy in place for just such scenarios. They would pay Johnson 10 percent of the $40,000 worth of skirts they said they had sold. When Johnson rejected that as too low, they offered $9,000, which she accepted. 'I was surprised how matter-of-fact they were,' she says." Forever 21 denies it has any such policy. So: Forever 21's workers earn minimum wage — if they can sew an entire vest every 55 seconds. The Changs meanwhile buy their daughters Chanel and educated them at prep schools and Ivy League colleges. And if one of their dresses or tops turns out to have been someone else's idea first, well — the fat profits on all those vests make for lots of settlement money. Fast fashion, like a lot of things about the fashion industry, really isn't very pretty underneath. Trovata/Forever 21 image from Trovata's lawsuit; Foley + Corinna/Forever 21 image [BusinessWeek] [Counterfeit Chic]Analysts at MasterCard are projecting that this year, Americans will for the first time ever spend more than $20 billion on Black Friday — barring extreme weather or other acts of God. And while some retailers' plans to open on the holiday itself have drawn popular , customer feedback motivated at least one chain to cut its holiday hours this time around: Sears, which opened on Thanksgiving day in 2010, won't do so again this year. ("There was a sentiment from customers to keep Thanksgiving as a holiday," admitted a sheepish-sounding spokesperson.) But the overall trend is still for longer hours, hence why shopping on Thanksgiving, by the way, now has a name: Brown Thursday. Ewwwwwwwww. [] Black Friday and the holiday shopping season, by the numbers: total holiday retail sales are expected to top $873 billion this season. 195 million people will shop on Black Friday. Americans say they plan to spend, on average, $704 on holiday gifts this year. Doubtless they will all buy highly necessary things that their intended recipients will treasure forever. [] Shoe designer Camilla Skovgaard, known for her stark designs that suggest there are things more valuable than merely being considered "pretty," is profiled in the Wall Street Journal. "It's the easiest thing in the world to bring yet another delicate little patent peep-toe stiletto into the world," she says, "and I have to work consciously to not go there." Another place Camilla Skovgaard does not go? Kitten heels: "It just looks bloody wrong, in my opinion. And what's the point — if my heel is going to get stuck in the sidewalk anyway, it might as well get stuck properly. I don't like doing things half-way." Interestingly, after fashion school, Skovgaard applied for a job working as a designer in Dubai, serving some of the wealthiest families of the Middle East. She worked there for seven years. "I guess you could say I overdosed on it all — on lace and embroidery, flowery prints and Swarovski crystals, which came in the bucket-loads. I know that's when I developed my distaste for shiny things," she says. She returned to London and studied shoe-making for six years, earning another fashion degree and her master's. She started her own business in 2006; "I find doing business a quite creative process, and I've run a very tight ship. I started on a £35,000 business loan from a Danish bank — no investors, no cash sponsorships, none of that." Last year, her sales topped £3.2 million. [] O.G. socialite and confirmed snazzy dresser Iris Apfel is lending her name to a set of reading glasses. Eyebobs is coming out with the Iris, pictured, for January. Proceeds from the specs will go to the charity Lighthouse International. [] Meanwhile, Rihanna is already onto her second fragrance. It's called Rebelle, and she's not wearing any visible clothing in the ads, OMG. [] If you wanted to check out the Tom Ford collection that had some critics reeling — that is to say, the collection that Virginie Mouzat an "inventory for Kim Kardashian" and a re-tread of everything Ford did ten years ago at Yves Saint Laurent, mixed with a little Céline and Alaïa — photos of it are, at last, available online. []J. Crew creative director and president Jenna Lyons' much-photographed Brooklyn brownstone home — you've seen it in just about every shelter mag, ever — is now on the market for $3.75 million. Lyons and her husband separated this summer and are embroiled in a bitter divorce; meanwhile, Lyons has with another woman who works in fashion, jewelry executive Courtney Crangi. The house and custody of their son Beckett are said to be the two most contentious issues in Lyons' divorce. More glorious real estate porn at the link. [] Label Daryl K shot a model dressed in its clothes at Occupy Wall Street to advertise its sample sale. As New York puts it, "Nothing says 99 percent like a $325 camel wrap-coat." [] Donatella Versace is in New York, preparing for the fashion show that will launch the Versace for H&M collection. The show — Nicki Minaj and Prince are going to perform — is tonight, and the clothes hit stores on November 19. "Girls today love to dress up," says Versace. "They love the Medusa. You see it even if they just buy a belt or sunglasses. They want to look cool and sexy. They don't want to look ordinary." [] This year's Victoria's Secret show (also known as the reason Adriana Lima hasn't solid food in weeks) features 38 models — 15 of whom have never walked the show before — and 69 looks. It has a budget of $12 million. [] Angel Candice Swanepoel did a ski-bunny-themed spread for the new V. [] Rosie Huntington-Whiteley, as previously announced, won't be doing the VS show this year. She has more important things to do, like be on the cover of German Vogue. [] Swiss scientists have found a way to bond a nanometer-thin layer of gold to a polyester core. The resulting fiber can be woven into neckties. For the man who has everything, CHF 7,500, or $8,450. []In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.The question of who will replace disgraced total-Nazi designer at has tongues wagging all over the industry. (But then again, when are fashion people ever not gossiping about something?) But two of the alleged front-runners are tight-lipped. Riccardo Tisci, when asked after his Givenchy show about the rumors that he is in line to become the next Dior creative director, would say only, "I felt this was a strong, positive season. And I'm happy at Givenchy." [] Haider Ackermann, another designer — one from outside the Louis Vuitton Moët Hennessy fold — said to be in the running for the Dior gig, said cryptically when asked if he'd go to another house, "Yes, you have to find the right person and look in the same direction; it's like a love affair. It has to be a coup de foudre on both sides. You know, sometimes you have a repertoire of your own, and sometimes you have something else to express and the code of another house may help. I don't know. We'll see." Ackermann said that he turned down the opportunity to take over Maison Martin Margiela in 2009, because "Martin is my hero, so it's a soul and souls are not replaceable. But yes there are places I would like to go and that I might go." [] Then there's this, from Style.com's Twitter feed: "Not to add to the Dior rumor mill, but people in Paris are asking, why has the Lanvin team been in tears all day?" Lanvin's Alber Elbaz is another name that's been widely touted as a Galliano successor. [@] Earlier: Meanwhile, Sidney Toledano, the C.E.O. of Dior, confirmed that LVMH is still backing the John Galliano signature label — for now. LVMH owns 92% of the John Galliano brand. It's common for major luxury companies to back the namesake lines of the designers who toil as creative directors of their flagship brands (see: LVMH investing in Marc Jacobs when Jacobs signed on as the creative director of Louis Vuitton) as a reward for loyal service — whether or not those namesake lines, which are often lower in profile than the flagship brands, actually make money. (The John Galliano brand is said to "barely break even.") Toledano attended the Galliano show in Paris on Sunday, and he said, "For the moment, the [Galliano] business continues. This is a business which has licenses and tomorrow we will show the collection in the showrooms as usual . . . I am here to prove that business goes on . . . and to support the teams." Not a ringing endorsement, exactly, but then again, this is an industry where maybe money resounds even more loudly than saying "I love Hitler." [] One of the models at the Galliano show had a small Star of David tattoo on her arm. [] Remember when Keira Knightley rode a beige Ducati motorcycle around the streets of Paris, a beige leather motorcycle suit, like the mother-of-the-bride version of Beatrix Kiddo? Well, now the Chanel perfume ad she was shooting is out. You can't actually see the bike. [] An old Jennifer Aniston photo shoot was recycled for a new cover of French Glamour. []In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.The new James Bond 007 fragrance debuts at Harrods next month, coinciding with the 50th anniversary of the James Bond film franchise, and release of the 23rd Bond film, Skyfall (which hits theaters in the US in November). Because nothing says "secret spy" like having your agency code number on a fragrance bottle. So, what does James Bond smell like? Not blood, sweat and martinis. The fragrance is an aromatic feugere with notes of fresh apple, cardamom, sandalwood and vetiver. The backbone contains lavender, moss and coumarin. "The aromatic feugere fragrance family came to prominence in the Sixties - it was unmistakably masculine - mossy and ferny," said Bill Brace, vice president of fashion brands for P&G Prestige. "But that was a while ago, so we wanted to move it on and give it much more modern and sophisticated shell, which is why there's fresh apple, cardamom, sandalwood and vetiver." Hear that? Modern men smell less like moss and ferns. Anyway, the target audience is "Guys in their 20s and 30s who love Bond, who love adventure, gadgets, travel and being a man's man with style and sophistication." In my experience those guys don't wear cologne, but whatevs. [] Marc New York — a division of Andrew Marc — will launch an ad campaign this fall that is supposedly inspired by the book Fifty Shades of Grey. There's no paddle or Red Room of Pain, just 2008 Miss Universe winner Dayana Mendoza in an unzipped dress and former Scottish rugby player Thom Evans appearing only in a towel. So it's like the book in that there is a man and a woman involved. [] Azealia Banks is the hyperkinetic new face and body of T by Alexander Wang! [] In case you missed it: The Kardashian sisters are looking for a plus-size model to promote their plus-sized denim line Kardashian Kurves, which will be sold at Sears. Should you desire to enter the contest, you must be over 18, as well as "kurvy" and "konfident" — and ready to explain what that means to you, in an essay. [] By the by, if you win the Kardashian kontest you will be flown koach. [] Behold the Mojito Shoe, designed by London architect Julian Hakes. It wraps around the foot like an lime peel and is called "surprisingly comfortable." [ via ] While other retailers are producing terrible T-shirts (cough ), Bon Ton is selling blue anti-bullying T-shirts at all its stores starting next week. The shirts retail for $12, and for each purchase, $8 will be donated to the organization Stomp Out Bullying. Brendan Hoffman, CEO of Bon-Ton Stores says: "Our hope is that parents, teachers and children will participate in the annual Blue Shirt Day - World Day of Bullying Prevention and stand up to bullies everywhere." [] Lancôme is launching a new fragrance, La vie est belle, beginning in mid-August, and they Photoshopped the fuck out of Julia Roberts, the face of the scent. [] Lena Dunham's cat manicure is pretty purrfect. []In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.The backlash over Anna Wintour's political activities — the Vogue editor is a top-tier Obama "bundler," having raised more than $500,000 for his reelection campaign, and has personally donated over $96,000 to Democratic candidates since 2004 — is here. And it is very, very sexist. On his radio show, Glenn Beck attacked Wintour and the Web ad she recently filmed for the Obama campaign (the one where she invited supporters to donate for a chance to dine with the president at a fundraiser Wintour is co-hosting with Michelle Obama and Sarah Jessica Parker) by referring to everyone's favorite hit dramedy of 2006, The Devil Wears Prada. "She was the devil part," said the radio host. "She was the person who was actually in the movie treating her co-workers... like garbage, waiting on her every whim. She is what [Obama] says capitalists are like all the time. She is everything she says the Republicans are and she's an Obama supporter." He then put on an accent to mock Wintour's pronunciation of "Mee-chelle Obahhma," and her invitation from the video: "I'm saving the best seat for you. Actually, I'm lying. You're gonna get a crumbum seat because you're part of the people." For good measure, he added, "She's not from a foreign country, she's an American." Wintour is in fact "from a foreign country" — she was born and raised in the U.K. (though she is also a naturalized U.S. citizen). Meanwhile, paleoconservative-with-a-Post-column John Podhoretz devoted his entire weekly rant to Wintour and her fancy-schmancy, "ridiculous," nose-in-the-air high-fashion turpitude. Podhoretz posted a still from the video, and called Wintour a "horror show" in the image caption. "The head-scratching political event of the weekend was the Obama campaign's release of a video starring that peerless political thinker and ideological visionary, Vogue magazine editor Anna Wintour," he writes. (John Podhoretz's qualifications to opine on matters political include the fact that he won Jeopardy! like five times in the 90s.) Podhoretz calls out Wintour's "relative lack of fame" compared to her co-hosts, and swoops in low for a joke about how fashion people have food issues, asking whether "the menu will include a salad of three lettuce leaves without dressing with a Tic Tac for dessert?" The conservative Web site the Daily Caller put a photo of Parker on its homepage under the headline, "Horse Race." The subhed: "FROM THE STABLES: Horsing around with Sarah Jessica Parker." That politicians sometimes host fundraising events with celebrities and figures from the media is hardly news. Mitt Romney is currently a strikingly similar celebrity dinner sweepstakes with Donald Trump in New York. "Dine with the Donald!" promises Romney's Web site. For donating $3 or more, you too can be entered to win a chance to "Ride in the Trump vehicle while in New York," get a tour of Trump Tower, and "Dine with Donald Trump and Mitt Romney." Why is Obama's dinner fundraiser getting so much negative attention? Probably because it happens to be co-hosted by two women who can be painted as frivolous, for entirely sexist reasons, thanks to their involvement with fashion. [, , ] Cass Bird was shooting Shalom Harlow for an Oyster cover story when a dude with a blue mohawk who calls himself Punk Kouture wandered onto the set from the Bowery Hotel restaurant. (We are hesitant to call anyone who dines at the Bowery Hotel restaurant a "punk," but Mr. Kouture certainly went to great lengths to embody the style.) Harlow flashed him, the moment was immortalized both by Bird and by behind-the-scenes photographer Christopher Peterson. And now it's in the magazine. [] Karl Lagerfeld's book of celebrities wearing black Chanel cardigan-style jackets is here. At right: Lauren Hutton, Yoko Ono, and Kanye West. []In for the San Francisco Chronicle, Sylvia Rubin writes, "Here's the good news about plus-size fashion. The industry is more or less listening to what women want." Eh. Sorta.She continues: The bad news: You won't find any Chanels, or sexy separates from hot labels like Alexander Wang, and the department store offerings are far more traditional than trendy - if they have plus-size departments at all. Yeah, that's more like it. The article highlights blogs like Curvy Fashionista and a handful of plus-size online boutiques, but the overall truth remains that it's hard out there for a plus-sized shopper. I should know. With the holidays right around the corner, I've found that when you go just a couple of sizes up — from 14 to 16, or from 16 to 18 — the selection changes drastically — and narrows. Most of the time, cute scoop-neck tops and flirty dresses are suddenly replaced by dowdy tent-like tops and frumpy, conservative dresses. If you want to look on-trend, you have your work cut out for you. Plus-size online boutiques deserve applause, but quite often, the design and quality simply can't compete with real designer clothes by noted designers. It's crazy that adding 3 inches here or there means you're suddenly not good enough for J. Crew or French Connection. In addition, there's the reality that means different things to different people. Commenter "PLozar" : What some posters don't get is that "plus size" doesn't equate to "fat." Even at my absolute thinnest, I couldn't wear tops smaller than size 14 because I'm well endowed… The problem (as kd9 points out) is that simply increasing the dimensions doesn't create a garment that FITS RIGHT — and it's all about fit. Clothes in general are designed for women who are …straight up and down — and they just plain don't FIT anyone who has curves. On the other hand, it seems like a miracle that any designers and retailers welcome plus-size shoppers — and the substantial profits, since the American woman wears a size 14 — when you think about the mindset behind the other comments on this article, which range from "NO fat chicks!" to "Eating everything at the buffet is not cute or chic" and, of course: "Do these dresses come with a side order of fries?" You'd think that a piece about plus-size fashion would be a place for plus-sized women share experiences, compare notes, and, you know, talk about plus-size fashion. Instead, it's a repository for vile thoughts. merciless mocking of the model (pictured above), and relentless fat-shaming. Some comments have been deleted; it's left up to your imagination how nasty or derogatory the "conversation" was. My favorite comment — winning points for fat-shaming and misogyny — comes from "tcttw," who : If the readers of these comments are going to be so sensitive — ok, offended — or, maybe it's the author, or the editors too, maybe stories like this should go on Jezebel.com. I cannot believe how many harmless but sarcastic comments were edited. It just proves you cannot take a certain gender so seriously. [SF Gate]Fast-fashion giant H&M is developing a new line of children's clothing that partly benefits UNICEF. Twenty-five per cent of the proceeds from H&M's "All for Children" line, which hits stores in October, will go to the charity. Reports Women's Wear Daily, the funds will be used "to promote children's rights to education and protection in vulnerable communities," particularly in southern India and Bangladesh. It cannot have escaped H&M's notice that Bangladesh and India are two of the countries where many of the child laborers who are employed in terrible circumstances making clothing for foreign retailers — including probably H&M — live; it's not impossible that children might even end up sewing some of the very clothes intended to be sold to fund UNICEF's anti-child labor initiatives. The rag trade is notoriously dangerous and low paying to workers of all ages; last year, in a fire at a garment factory that supplied H&M and other brands. [] H&M had a decent quarter: same-store sales rose 11% and 2% over last year in April and May, respectively, and revenue rose 2% overall, to $4.4 billion. [] Meanwhile, according to a new book, "the average female invests in 62lb of clothing each year, has upwards of 20 garments hanging in her wardrobe that she has never worn and owns four times the amount [of clothing] today than she did in 1980." These numbers are based on studies conducted at the University of Cambridge. Furthermore: "Women are expected to spend £133,640 in a lifetime on fashion. In 2007, three pairs of jeans were sold each second. Between 2001 and 2005, while spending on womenswear rose by 21 per cent, the price of individual items dropped by 14 per cent." [] Here's another shot from Helena Bonham Carter's Marc Jacobs campaign. We think the message here is, Fashion is sickening. [] Jennifer Aniston wears an oversized blazer and no pants on the new cover of Marie Claire. [] The fall Carolina Herrera campaign, featuring model Sigrid Agren and shot by Patrick Demarchelier, was inspired by a 1970 Norman Parkinson photograph of Herrera herself. [] And Summit Entertainment has announced that Bella Swan marries Eddy Sparklevamp in a Carolina Herrera wedding dress in the forthcoming Twilight movie. [] British Vogue has a nice preview of the pricey new Assouline book Cecil Beaton: The Art Of The Notebook, which reprints some of the photographer's sketches, collages, and snapshots. [] Here is a picture of Jean-Paul Gaultier wearing newspaper on the cover of Libération. [] The Huffington Post thinks Beyoncé on the new cover of Dazed & Confused looks a little like Kate Gosselin. Once you see it, you can't un-see it. [] And memoirist Robin Romm thinks this J. Crew ad — in gif form, it shows the popsicle disappearing, bite by bite — looks like the cover of his book. []Folks: we officially live in a world where Beyoncé's skin gets for ads and Isabeli Fontana's gets darkened. H&M is under fire from public health and cancer groups for hiring model Isabeli Fontana for its latest swimwear campaign and making her look really tan — tan in a way that many people can't achieve via healthy means. A photo of Fontana from the last time she modeled for H&M is included for comparison. We don't know if this is bronzer, fake tanner, Photoshop, or some unholy combination of all of the above — hopefully it's not a tanning bed or the sun, eek — but Fontana doesn't normally look like . Note to H&M: if you like the way your swimsuit colors "pop" against darker skin tones, these days they have models who naturally have those skin tones. At nearly all of the major agencies! Maybe hire them? [] Those Photoshop pranksters at Lucky give us another round of designer collaborations that aren't real (but which would be awesome). Mary Katrantzou for Lululemon, make it happen! [] Carey Mulligan listed her custom Prada Met Ball dress on eBay for charity. This — given the proceeds are going to Oxfam and given the dress is going to sell for a bajillion dollars anyway — is the only situation in which it is acceptable to bid on an eBay item that is nine days, seven hours away from being sold, FYI. (We are firm members of the Coalition Against People Who Bid Too Early On eBay, Thereby Driving Up The Price For Those Of Us Who Actually Have The Patience And Cunning To Win [And No Sniping Software, It's Unsporting, You Jerk].) [] Vogue Paris got itself an iPhone app. [] Karl Lagerfeld Tweeted this photo of his kitten, Choupette, playing with an iPad. "iPet," wrote Karl. [@]In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.Natalie Portman is nude — again — in her latest ads for Dior. Or at least she's technically "nude": all you can really see on the left there is a tasteful glimpse of shoulder, but we suppose Dior knows that the chance to put "Natalie Portman Nude" in a headline virtually guarantees the world media will take an interest in an otherwise mundane ad for overpriced makeup. The actress has also gone tastefully topless in several ads for Miss Dior Cherie perfume. But there's also a fake Natalie Portman nude Dior ad going around that is not part of the new campaign: it's a photo of the actress lying naked on a rug (either an old picture or a Photoshop hackjob), with a Christian Dior logo kind of half-assedly superimposed on one corner. That's the fake ad on the right. Even though it is not really convincing as a Dior ad, the Daily Mail was apparently taken in by it and the fake. [] This is Nicki Minaj's perfume bottle. Well, that sure is...different. [] Alexa Chung is on the cover of Japanese Numéro. She tells the magazine that she's working on a clothing line: "Yes, I'm definitely going to do that. I'm looking into it right now. I've got nothing to lose, it's a bit of fun. In this current era of celebrity no one believes you actually design the stuff anyway, even though I sketch everything myself. So if it sucks I can say I had nothing to do with it, and if it's really good I can say ‘Here are the drawings, it's all my own work!'" [] Vogue got Justin Bieber to star in this ad for Fashion's Night out — but apparently it couldn't get him to learn the event name. The Bieberator flubs it, calling it "Fashion Night Out." And in a corner office on the 12th floor, Anna Wintour plots revenge. [] For good measure, there's also a Fashion's Night Out ad starring Karlie Kloss, Victoria Beckham, Francisco Costa, Darren Criss, Carolina Herrera, Chanel Iman, Marc Jacobs, Liya Kebede, Solange Knowles, Michael Kors, Doutzen Kroes, Arizona Muse, Jessica Paré, Coco Rocha, Hailee Steinfeld, Alexander Wang, Kristen Wiig, Olivia Wilde and Jason Wu. [] This is one of the pieces from Grace Coddington's collaboration with Balenciaga. The collection features prints based on Coddington's own drawings of cats, and is named for the editor's cat, Pumpkin. [] Here's a photo of Sarah Jessica Parker on the Glee set in character as Isabelle, the editor of Vogue.com. Anna Wintour styled the actress's costume. [] Whatever you say, Daphne Guinness. [@]Everyone's whether this season, designers and casting directors would be putting more faces of color in their runway lineups. Well! We have the facts and we're voting a qualified yes. Let's explore.There were 116 labels that held shows at the recently ended New York fashion week; that's 3,697 spots in runway and presentation lineups. Of those, 668 were given to models of color — which, at just over 18%, is . (And certainly better than in the fall of 2007, when WWD reported that one-third of the New York shows .) The 668 spots that went to models of color were divided as follows: Legend Yellow = Black models Red = Asian models Blue = Latina models Green= Other ethnicities Last February, the biggest slice of runway spots for models of color — 41% — went to Asian girls, and only 38% of the models of color used were black. I also noted when opening and closing spots in runway shows were given to models of color, since opening or closing a show is considered such a coup. Designers choose opening and closing models who will set the tone for their vision of the season, and being picked for the position is a big deal within the fashion industry. Because of the economy, there were an unusually high number of static presentations this season since they are cheaper to mount than runway shows, and tableaux vivants of models do not have opening or closing positions. Unfortunately I didn't keep track of exactly how many presentations there were vs. actual shows, so you'll have to take my best estimate that there were around 160 opening and closing spots up for grabs in New York this season. Of those, Latina models opened or closed 5 times, Asian models opened or closed 3 times, and black models opened or closed 10 times. The fact that black models became not only the largest single ethnic group on the runways — save for whites — and the non-white ethnic group who closed and opened the most shows definitely demonstrates that the diversity message people like Bethann Hardison and Diane von Furstenberg have been propounding for years now is at last getting through. The news is not, however, all positive. There were 7 shows that had no models of color at all. Those designers were: Altuzarra, Davidelfin, Jenni Kayne, Julian Louie, Koi Suwannagate, Temperley London, Vera Wang Lavender Label. And there were 19 shows that had some models of color, but no black models. They were: Alexandre Herchcovitz, Behnaz Sarafpour, Costello Tagliapietra, Erin Fetherston, Halston, Marchesa, Max Azria, Milly, Miss Sixty, Monique Lhuillier, Nicole Miller, Philosophy, Reem Acra, Tibi, TSE, United Bamboo, Vena Cava, VPL, Vivienne Tam. The 116 designer shows I looked at break down in terms of diversity as follows: Legend: Blue = Shows with 0 models of color Red = Shows whose casts included 1-9% models of color (this slice includes the designers BCBG Max Azria, Calvin Klein, Cynthia Rowley, Donna Karan, Erin Fetherston, Hervé Leger by Max Azria, Jill Stuart, Marchesa, Matthew Williamson, Max Azria, Miss Sixty, Monique Lhuillier, Narciso Rodriguez, Phi, Philosophy, Proenza Schouler, Reem Acra, Rodarte, Tuleh, Vivienne Tam) Yellow = Shows whose casts included 10-19% models of color (this slice includes the designers Alexander Wang, Anna Sui, Behnaz Sarafpour, Carolina Herrera, Derek Lam, DKNY, Doo.Ri, Jonathan Saunders, L'Wren Scott, Marc by Marc Jacobs, Marc Jacobs, Michael Kors, Nicole Miller, Rebecca Taylor, Richard Chai, Thakoon, Tommy Hilfiger, Zac Posen) Green = Shows whose casts included 20-29% models of color (this slice includes the designers 3.1 Philip Lim, Betsey Johnson, Diesel Black Gold, Isaac Mizrahi, Jason Wu, Lacoste, Malandrino, Nanette Lepore, Ohne Titel, Ralph Lauren, Vera Wang) Purple = Shows whose casts included 30-39% models of color (this slice includes the designers Badgley Mishka, Diane von Furstenberg, Tory Burch, Yigal Azrouël) Orange = Shows whose casts included 40-49% models of color (this slice includes the designer Oscar de la Renta) Brown = Shows whose casts included 50-59% models of color (this slice includes the designers Ports 1961, Rachel Roy, Victoria Beckham) Gray = Shows whose casts included 60% or more models of color (this slice comprises the designers Sophie Theallet and Tracy Reese) For purposes of comparison, the that this country is just under 74% white — so an 18% non-white runway population is still well below what might be considered truly representative. But New York fashion week this season was also closer to representative of overall U.S. diversity than it has ever been since this sort of data started being kept. Here are the raw data for 25 of the top shows: 3.1 Philip Lim 9 runway spots to models of color / 41 total runway spots 21% of runway spots to models of color Wanessa Milhomem (Latina) Tao Okamoto (Asian, O) Emma Pei (Asian) Hyoni Kang (Asian) Liu Wen (Asian) Han Jin (Asian) Du Juan (Asian) Gracie Carvalho (Black) Georgie Badiel (Black) Alexander Wang 4/40 10% Liu Wen (Asian) Lakshmi Menon (Asian) Tao Okamoto (Asian) Jourdan Dunn (Black) Anna Sui 6/50 12% Liu Wen (Asian, 2 looks) Du Juan (Asian, 2 looks) Jourdan Dunn (Black, 2 looks) Badgley Mishka 11/33 33% Flavia de Oliveira (Latina, 2 looks) Bruna Tenorio (Latina, 2 looks) Lakshmi Menon (Asian, 3 looks) Hyoni Kang (Asian, 2 looks) Sessilee Lopez (Black, 2 looks, C) Calvin Klein 1/35 3% Lyndsey Scott (Black) Carolina Herrera 5/34 14% Lakshmi Menon (Asian) Du Juan (Asian) Liu Wen (Asian) Jourdan Dunn (Black) Gracie Carvalho (Black) Diane von Furstenberg 12/39 31% Caroline Ribeiro (Latina) Bruna Tenorio (Latina) Flavia de Oliveira (Latina) Du Juan (Asian) Emma Pei (Asian) Han Jin (Asian) Lakshmi Menon (Asian) Sessilee Lopez (Black) Chanel Iman (Black) Arlenis Sosa (Black) Gracie Carvalho (Black) Georgie Badiel (Black) Donna Karan 3/45 7% Jourdan Dunn (Black, 2 looks) Arlenis Sosa (Black) Isaac Mizrahi 9/40 23% Tao Okamoto (Asian) Aminata Niaria (Black, 2 looks) Arlenis Sosa (Black, 2 looks) Georgie Badiel (Black, 2 looks) Sessilee Lopez (Black) Jourdan Dunn (Black) Jason Wu 10/35 29% Lakshmi Menon (Asian, 2 looks) Liu Wen (Asian, 2 looks) Du Juan (Asian) Jourdan Dunn (Black, 2 looks, O) Arlenis Sosa (Black) Sessilee Lopez (Black) Chanel Iman (Black) Malandrino 12/47 26% Joan Smalls (Latina) Eugenia Mandzhieva (Asian, 3 looks) Emma Pei (Asian, 2 looks) Georgie Badiel (Black) Aminata Niaria (Black) Rahma Mohamed (Black) Sessilee Lopez (Black, 3 looks) Marc Jacobs 10/60 17% Daiane Conterato (Latina) Bruna Tenorio (Latina) Hye Park (Asian) Han Jin (Asian) Du Juan (Asian) Tao Okamoto (Asian) Chanel Iman (Black) Sessilee Lopez (Black) Georgie Badiel (Black) Jourdan Dunn (Black) Michael Kors 7/55 12% Caroline Ribeiro (Latina) Bruna Tenorio (Latina) Liu Wen (Asian) Han Jin (Asian) Jourdan Dunn (Black) Chanel Iman (Black) Arlenis Sosa (Black) Monique Lhuillier 1/12 8% Cecilia Mendez (Latina) Narciso Rodriguez 3/39 8% Liu Wen (Asian) Sessilee Lopez (Black) Arlenis Sosa (Black) Oscar de la Renta 25/51 49% Daiane Conterato (Latina, 3 looks) Bruna Tenorio (Latina, 2 looks) Cecilia Mendez (Latina, 2 looks) Marilia Dutra (Latina, 2 looks) Joan Smalls (Latina) Hye Park (Asian) Jourdan Dunn (Black, 3 looks, O, C) Ubah Hassan (Black, 3 looks) Sessilee Lopez (Black, 2 looks) Georgie Badiel (Black, 2 looks) Aminata Niaria (Black, 2 looks) Arlenis Sosa (Black, 2 looks) Tara Gill (Other — Native American) Philosophy 2/24 8% Daiane Conterato (Latina) Selina Khan (Asian) Proenza Schouler 3/38 8% Daiane Conterato (Latina) Liu Wen (Asian) Jourdan Dunn (Black) Ralph Lauren 16/55 29% Cecilia Mendez (Latina, 3 looks, O) Bruna Tenorio (Latina, 3 looks) Tao Okamoto (Asian, 2 looks) Liu Wen (Asian) Shu Pei Qin (Asian) Selina Khan (Asian) Ubah Hassan (Black, 3 looks) Jourdan Dunn (Black) Gracie Carvalho (Black) Rodarte 3/35 9% Daul Kim (Asian) Emma Pei (Asian) Jourdan Dunn (Black) Thakoon 5/35 14% Daiane Conterato (Latina, 2 looks) Bruna Tenorio (Latina) Jourdan Dunn (Black, 2 looks, C) Tommy Hilfiger 5/29 13% Du Juan (Asian) Eugenia Mandzhieva (Asian) Jourdan Dunn (Black) Sessilee Lopez (Black) Arlenis Sosa (Black) Vera Wang 8/30 27% Bruna Tenorio (Latina) Daiane Conterato (Latina) Wanessa Milhomem (Latina) Shu Pei Qin (Asian) Tao Okamoto (Asian) Liu Wen (Asian) Gracie Carvalho (Black) Aminata Niaria (Black) Yigal Azrouël 11/28 39% Bruna Tenorio (Latina, 2 looks) Daiane Conterato (Latina, 2 looks) Lais Oliveira (Latina, 2 looks) Tao Okamoto (Asian, 2 looks) Hye Park (Asian) Kinée Diouf (Black, 2 looks) Zac Posen 5/43 12% Du Juan (Asian) Alek Wek (Black, 2 looks) Chanel Iman (Black) Jourdan Dunn (Black) About These Numbers There's a certain undeniable level of weirdness to looking through runway slideshows on Style.com (and I did only consider presentations and shows by designers big enough to attract Style.com's attention) and counting the models of color. It's hard to put individuals of mixed backgrounds into neat little categories, especially when ethnic labels still carry so much weight within society. It seems thoroughly antique and not a little distasteful. So, why count models? The fact remains that the fashion industry plays a huge role in promulgating ideas of beauty within Western culture, and how the people in charge of casting for the runways — plus the magazines, and the billboards, and the TV spots and the banner ads — choose to represent beauty has a huge impact on, well, pretty much everyone. It's also naive to think that casting happens anything but deliberately: models of color are still booked as Models Of Color, so noticing when they work and for whom is, in a way, natural. That's not to say it was easy, or that I'm standing behind these classifications as the be-all and end-all. Take Sessilee Lopez. She may be a Spanish-speaking Latina magazine covergirl: But in many ways, her career was made when she was chosen as one of the cover models for Vogue Italia's groundbreaking : So, I had to pick, and I chose to count Sessilee as black. Gracie Carvalho, a Brazilian of African heritage, and Chanel Iman, who is famously of mixed African-American and Korean background, are two examples of other models I chose to classify as black who could have potentially ended up in other categories. Latina models were the hardest to count. Sometimes, dark-eyed and dark-haired Spaniards, like Clara Alonso and Sheila Marquez, jumped out at me in runway lineups — but I didn't count them as Latina, because they're both European. I classified the Puerto Rican model as Latina, even though I just noticed Dodai counted her as black a year ago. But I also put the brown-eyed, fair-skinned Brazilian in the Latina camp, even though sometimes when I saw her on the runway, I would take her for white. Nationality isn't much guide to a person's ethnicity. South American models like Pilar Solchaga, Flo Gennaro, and Isabeli Fontana, who have European heritage, I chose not to count as Latina. Them's the breaks. Now, my Google history is full of fascinating trips to Wikipedia to learn about the (, a Russian national I counted as Asian, is Kalmyk) and my room-mate heard me chanting "Natasha Poly Natasa Vojnovic Vlada Roslyakova Roza Gough Georgie Badiel Bruna Tenorio Tao Okamoto Olga Scherer Selina Khan Katie Fogarty Fatima Siad Shanina Shaik Sharan Bala Behati Prinsloo Hye Park Ubah Hassan..." softly in my sleep last night. But the good news is, the runways of New York are becoming a more accurate reflection of who we are as a country. And while fashion still has some distance to go, that's worth cheering. Granted, to piece that together, I could have just looked at the banner for the New York shows on Style.com. From left, I think I can recognize Iris Strubegger, Sessilee Lopez backstage at Marc Jacobs, an Asian model I think is Han Jin, and then, to the right of the "Fall 2009" text, there's Tao Okamoto, a white model I can't place, and a tiny image of Jourdan Dunn. That's four models of color and two white models, happily sharing the same space, picked as emblems of the season to come. For now, the banner announcing the New York shows is actually more diverse than the shows were. But if this trend continues — and remember, WWD found one-third of shows in September of '07 had no models of color at all — soon that might not be the case. Related: [NY Times] [NY Times] [Style.com] Earlier: You haven't had steamy sex until you've done it with long hair. After adding mid-back blonde extensions to my usual platinum pixie, I had the chance to experience sex from an entirely unique perspective that I didn't even know existed. My long blonde hair was like a dirty maid Halloween costume…you know how girls get in dirty maid costumes. Masks, wigs, clothes, even sunglasses -– they give us an out. They allow, if not encourage us to set aside our inhibitions, while providing a filter between us and our oh-so-mundane realities. Pre-receiving my long blonde extensions, I was a woman with confidence and strength; a pretty successfully self-employed gal with great friends and a loving family, a beautiful apartment without roommates, and a basically healthy sex life. If my experience informs me correctly, short-haired-Mihal had at least a medium amount of sex appeal, providing me enough opportunities to go out on dates, have casual (mostly fulfilling) sex, construct some decent after-sex texts, and keep it moving. Post-receiving my long blonde extensions, I transformed into an ultra-feminine gift unto the world. My laugh became mellifluous and charming, my gait developed more hip action, and my head began to tilt flirtatiously without my even realizing. I could side-braid the hair like the models in Alexander Wang's S2010 Collection, or pile it on top of my head with a colorful headscarf and bold red lips. I was still the old me deep inside –- I'm a girl who loves to work hard, loves dinner and long talks with friends, and of course, a girl who loves sex. Only now, the prospect of first dates no longer felt awkward, and the potential of hot sex called to me even more. So I did it, duh. Went on a couple of dates, had a couple of mates. And at the risk of sounding like an anti-movement traitor, believe me when I tell you that sex — casual sex specifically — is a different animal when long hair is involved…as was I. I flipped it, I whipped it, I brushed it out of his eyes, I brushed it from mine. When my long tresses got in between our soft, wet kisses, I moved them out of the way with a coy smile. Blow jobs with long hair resembled an act of sensual prayer. Long hair made my skin feel silkier! My legs feel longer! Breasts? Perfect. Cellulite?! GONE. I felt like a Grecian goddess, a porn star and the girl next door all in one. The next morning my femme-bot hair wasn't a spikey unsightly mess, it was just bed messy -– sex messy. Morning sex with the long blonde extensions was just as good, if not better — as was the post-sex brunch outfit I put together. Jeans. Ratty white v-neck. High messy bun. You're kidding yourself if you don't acknowledge that your hair communicates a message to the world. New York, specifically, is a whore for a good mop on top. Whether it's a long bohemian natural wave, a head of half-shaved half-dyed dreadlocks, or an angsty swoopy-banged shag -– we love us some captivating hair. Women's hair, specifically, transmits a multi-faceted story. Think about what hair would look like on the following female prototypes: a carefree Cali girl, an Upper East Side housewife, a Lower East Side painter, a (gasp!) girl from the projects, a (gaaaasp!!) lesbian. Our hair speaks to our character, our sexuality, our spirituality, our intellect. This is not to say that these projections are valid. I'm certainly not saying that short-haired girls can't have righteous sex (I've been known to have one or two short-haired romps in the sack)…or that long-haired girls always do. There is simply something to be said for the power held within a hair flip, or the innocent peering out from behind a fallen lock. Brigitte Bardot, Angelina Jolie, Beyonce (yeah hers are fake too but whatever) – I'm no data analyst but I'd say that at least 90% of all Hollywood (or blogosphere!) sexbombs surrounding us have longish to long tresses. Women want the look because it's glam, coquettish, mysterious. Men are attracted to the look because, simply put, it's uber-feminine. They can run their fingers through it softly or give it a nice tug from behind (if you catch my drift). Shall I launch into some discourse about heteronormativity and the dangers surrounding gender dynamics? Me thinks not right now, though obviously they're in the not-so-distant background. But I will tell you this: valid or not, in those two weeks of long-haired luxury, I fully indulged every politically-incorrect part of what it means to be a carefree hetero-seductress, with her mind on sex and her (fake) hair flowing freely. I subscribed to the myth and enjoyed every minute of that badboy. Of course I believe that short cuts can be sexy and chic - I should know, mine changed my life. But as I pulled those painfully, torturously itchy extensions out earlier this week, I can't deny that I experienced a tinge of doubt and fear. What if I never have hot Grecian goddess/porn star/girl next door sex again?! Will my skin ever again feel the way Dove commercial skin looks? How does a person without long hair make their cellulite magically disappear?! More importantly, what else can money buy that will give me the same rush of inhibition and guise of exaggerated femininity?! Maybe I'll be giving the dirty maid Halloween costume a whirl this year. is a professional New Yorker. She's still having awesome sex.Cathy Horyn is for what she wrote . Nor does she feel particularly bad for Tommy Hilfiger, Alexander Wang, Giorgio Armani, or any of the other people whose collections and/or fashion sense she has publicly critiqued.Horyn, who is the New York Times' fashion critic, is profiled today by Jacob Bernstein at the Daily Beast. What does he unearth? Mainly that Horyn is an informed and passionate critic of the industry she covers. That isn't exactly news, but it remains a nearly unique distinction for Horyn in her field. Horyn has long taken perverse pride in when her reviews have resulted in retaliatory show bannings from such industry lights as Carolina Herrera, Giorgio Armani, Dolce & Gabbana, Helmut Lang, Nicole Miller, and Oscar de la Renta. "I don't think reviews really matter anymore," Herrera sniffed when Bernstein asked her what she thought about Horyn. Karl Lagerfeld claims not to read her. Horyn, who is from Ohio, says her criticism comes from a place of — well, not love, exactly, but respect. She says she identified very strongly with her predecessor at the Times, Amy Spindler: "Amy and I shared the same Midwestern quality, which is that we want people to be better," Horyn says. (Spindler died of cancer six years ago). "We have standards. We want people to be not just good but very good. And I can be tough on people, sometimes too tough, especially with the most creative. I once called one of Tom Ford's collections freakish and ugly." So that's why she said Alexander Wang is "not a great designer." ( that line is lifted from is not uniformly negative. Horyn also calls Wang "clearly a shrewd guy" and praised him for making clothing that is affordable.) Indeed, among the major fashion critics — women like Lynn Yaeger, Sarah Mower, Suzy Menkes, and Robin Givhan — only Horyn and Yaeger consistently bring up price (and overprice) in their critiques. Horyn is also one of the few fashion writers to have made a point of saying that she does not find fashion bloggers in any way threatening. (Some of her peers when asked to breathe the same air as a blogger.) Her contributions to the Times are concise and entertaining, and she reads the comments, too. Horyn says of the flap over her Wang review, "With Alexander, he's a smart kid, I admire the business that he's built, but you have to be critical of what he's done. You can't just say, 'Oh well, he's young and he's working hard, he's putting a product on the runway.'" What do Horyn's critics think she should do? Give him a cookie? Horyn has to Anna Wintour and American Vogue and pointed it out when Tommy Hilfiger's collection is even more boring and rip-off-y than usual. About the worst that can be said of Cathy Horyn is that one time she reported some objectively pretty terrible, and as far as anyone can tell accurate, things about a reality-television star who is proud to tell reporters that she has read only two books in her entire life, and that this arguably came off as "mean." Also, once she did not like a dress that Christina Hendricks wore. In any case, Horyn now says she was in the wrong on that one, to the extent that her critique (and her choice to report a quote from a stylist who said, "You don't put a big girl in a big dress") seemed like a criticism of Hendricks' body rather than the dress she chose to clothe it in. "I should have stepped back and explained what that person meant. It wasn't about Christina's figure," says Horyn. The thing is, if Cathy Horyn wrote about movies or restaurants or television — or almost anything besides fashion — her independent mind, depth of reportorial experience, and strong critical perspective would be considered an asset. We don't expect Roger Ebert to tell us that Remember Me was actually pretty good because Robert Pattinson and Emilie de Ravin are clearly talented and everyone involved must have worked really hard on it. We expect him to tell us the truth. With any other kind of consumer product, the critic is understood to be an ally of the reader — it is her job to be tough on the industry she covers so that the rest of us can perhaps avoid wasting our money on an inferior product. But most fashion writing is rightly understood by the reader to be a stooge for the luxury companies, and the writer a booster for their products. Seeing actual criticism of fashion therefore seems to some readers "personal" and "mean" in ways that criticism of industries more used to critique, like film and theater, does not. There are plenty of people in fashion who work hard — but, much as they may wish it were otherwise, none of them is above critical evaluation. Fashion is a hundred-billion-dollar global industry that specializes in separating (mainly) women from their hard-earned money. And the majority of its media suffer tremendously from their inability and/or unwillingness to enforce the church/state boundary common to every other arena of journalism. Cathy Horyn and writers like her are utterly necessary. Sarah Jessica Parker compares Horyn to Pauline Kael, and I can see her point; like Kael, she has a spine. [Daily Beast]Kate Upton posed nude for something called Contributor magazine, which is a little random, but hey. Does anyone else think she looks a tad like Andrej Pejic? [] Over on Vogue.com, Anna Wintour offers this recollection of her first American Vogue cover shoot, which featured model Michaela Bercu and was shot by Peter Lindbergh: Michaela was wearing an haute couture Christian Lacroix jacket with a beaded cross, all very "Like a Prayer," and stonewashed Guess jeans. The jacket was actually part of a suit, but the skirt didn't fit Michaela; she had been on vacation back home in Israel and had gained a little weight. Not that that mattered. In fact, it only served to reinforce the idea to take couture's haughty grandeur and playfully throw it headlong into real life and see what happened. Wintour says that when the issue went to the printers, they called to check that the cover wasn't a mistake. "I couldn't blame them," she writes. It was so unlike the studied and elegant close-ups that were typical of Vogue's covers back then, with tons of makeup and major jewelry. This one broke all the rules. Michaela wasn't looking at you, and worse, she had her eyes almost closed. Her hair was blowing across her face. It looked easy, casual, a moment that had been snapped on the street, which it had been, and which was the whole point. [] Here's Penelope Cruz on the cover of W. [] Jennifer Lopez is on the cover of InStyle. She tells the magazine, "The most important quality the man in my life should have is that he is sweet. I like the good guys." [] Lily Collins is in the September issue of Glamour. She talks about her eyebrows. [] Christian Siriano's latest Payless shoe collection — featuring the footwear from his fall runway show this past February — is now in stores. [] Stuart Weitzman nabbed Natalia Vodianova for its fall ads. [] Here are some photos of Laetitia Casta in a fashion spread with Choupette, Karl Lagerfeld's cat. "She is an unusually beautiful cat, and it was a lovely experience," says Casta. []In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.Isabella Rossellini is one of about a dozen supermodels featured in the new HBO documentary About Face. In the film, she discusses aging, and wonders if plastic surgery is the "new foot binding" for women. Carmen Dell'Orefice, who admits to having a few judicious surgical procedures, disagrees. "If you had the ceiling falling down in your living room, wouldn't you go and have a repair?" she asks. Meanwhile, Paulina Porizkova says that when she started out in the industry, models were told to take sexual harassment as a compliment. "When a 16-year-old girl is flattered by a man pulling out his penis, that's noteworthy." [] Isabella Rossellini also stars in this new Bulgari campaign, shot by Annie Leibovitz. The supermodel has an accessories collection with the fashion brand. [] Here are LOVE magazine's covers with Downton Abbey stars Michelle Dockery and Jessica Brown Findlay, aka Lady Mary and Lady Sybil. [] The Cut points out that this fall's ads for the Alexander McQueen line McQ and Alexander Wang — both shot by David Sims — look an awful lot alike in concept and execution. [] Raf Simons talks about his first Christian Dior couture collection in this video produced by the house. [] Speaking of Raf Simons' Dior couture! Marion Cotillard just became the first person to wear a piece from that collection off the runway. She donned a look with a bustier and houndstooth checked midi skirt for the London premiere of the new Batman movie. Jeremy Scott's fall collection for Adidas features pants made out of teddy bears. If that's too much for you, there's a teddy bear jacket, too. [] A German artist who makes work influenced by pop culture — including a series of celebrities as My Little Ponies — made a My Little Pony Karl Lagerfeld. []As you may have heard, recently wore a red evening gown to a state dinner held in honor of the Chinese president, . This apparently made a lot of people very unhappy., who previously that Obama's cardigan was the wrong thing to wear while meeting the Queen of England, said it was a shame that a First Lady wasn't supporting American designers — as if Obama had not already given huge boosts to the careers of such U.S. talents as , , , , , , , and de la Renta's own son, Moises. , in her official role as president of the Council of Fashion Designers of America, piped up in agreement with the idea that Obama should have worn something "American" to the dinner. editor joined the chorus, : "To wear something other than American at this particular trade-centric mega-fete embarrasses a major U.S. industry that continues to need all the help it can get." Vanity Fair's criticized Obama on dress-national-origins terms, but also the McQueen made her look "too big." Kate Betts wrote a riposte Obama's right to wear what she likes. similarly hit back on her New York Times blog by that the fashion industry is highly internationalized, and that many American designers — including Diane Von Furstenberg herself — manufacture their clothes overseas, especially in China. Fashion is and has always been a global soup; A garment might be designed in one country, manufactured in another, with fabrics sourced from a third, garment workers are often immigrants, and whatever the designer's nationality and headquarters, his or her brand may be owned or backed by a company based somewhere else entirely. ( manufactures in China. is owned by Permira, a private equity firm headquartered in London.) Et cetera. And for a First Lady to wear a foreign designer is hardly a new phenomenon: was known to wear Chanel from time to time. As women, our physical appearance and dress are constantly scrutinized and policed by cultural forces as specific as the bosses who oblige female employees to and as diffuse as Vogue and the sea of Photoshop-perfected advertising in which we are all awash. Women bear the brunt of a fusillade of superficial critiques — about how much we should weigh, how our skin is supposed to look as we age, how we must dress, for fuck's sake, we're even meant to divide our wardrobes , because God forbid a woman ever be thought of as fat — that is both disturbing (to most) and highly lucrative (to a select few). If the cultural message is that the most important thing about a woman is how she looks, then the consequence is that looking "bad" or wearing the wrong garment becomes the worst thing a woman can do. Michelle Obama is a Princeton and Harvard-educated lawyer and former executive at the University of Chicago Hospitals system who happens to dress pretty well and be married to the president of the United States of America. But what are the stories about her that have dominated the media? They're not about her skills, her experience, her mind, or even about her almost disgustingly uncontroversial pet issue, fighting childhood obesity. The Michelle Obama News is about whether her eyebrows are "angry." Whether her clothes mark her as a "new Marie Antoinette." Whether her clothes mark her as a "new Jackie Kennedy." (Even the positive press Obama has received as a "fashion icon" has always made me a little bit uncomfortable. It would be fine if that weren't the only angle of coverage, but it seems like her fashion sense is discussed to the exclusion of anything else.) And lately, the "story" is whether she was right to wear a dress designed by a British creative director under the auspices of a fashion brand owned by a multinational headquartered in France, a dress manufactured in Italy, and sold to her (most likely) by an American retailer. It's probably obvious where my sympathies lie in this "debate" — obviously, the only defensible position is that Michelle Obama should wear whatever the hell she wants — but more than anything, I just hate that here we all are, still taking a talented and hard-working woman with a formidable mind, and analyzing her for news cycle after agonizing news cycle on the basis of how she dresses herself. The is now in from , who takes the (to my mind respectable) position that a garment's notional national origins is an insufficient argument in its favor, and women like Michelle Obama and Kate Middleton should wear what they like; The Dress story is going international, with a side of royal wedding fever! The state dinner happened on January 19. When is this going to end? And is there any chance we might move on to discussing Michelle Obama's actual, you know, work anytime soon? (Maybe someday we'll even be allowed to have a First Lady who keeps her regular job after entering the White House.) [Guardian]The name of Farley's line is "Filthy Couture," so it's not as if she's trying to act like she's competing with Chanel: these are party clothes, designed for clubbing and potentially eating ham in when you're drunk and in a confessional booth on reality tv.In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.Chace Crawford, aka Gossip Girl's Nate, totally failed the Grazia . On video. He couldn't figure out what the four fashion capitals are (Milan, hello?), floundered on the "what's the difference between a wedge and a stiletto" question and thought that Alexander Wang (who has been featured in Teen Vogue, Vogue, Elle and Nylon) was Vera Wang's husband. Worst of all? Chace thinks beige is a "like, dark" color. What would Blair Waldorf say? Clip embedded behind the pic. [] Hint is reporting that the show for 's namesake label, originally scheduled for this Sunday in Paris, is canceled. [@] The video of John Galliano drunkenly declaring his love for Hitler and discussing people who should be "gassed" had been in circulation well prior to the designer's Thursday arrest for hurling anti-Semitic and racist slurs at another couple. The paparazzi agency that brokered the clip to the Sun had offered it for sale months ago, but there were no takers: Dior is a big advertiser. The unnamed person who took the video and cashed the check is "very happy." [] Michael Specter, who profiled Galliano for the New Yorker in 2003: "Galliano's act of self destruction was about as shocking as the widespread discovery, also this week, that Charlie Sheen is a vulgar fool. Galliano is a deeply talented man, and his early shows helped set fashion on a course it has followed for years, turning the business into a celebrity cult. But his career, and his life, were built on twin pillars of excess and exhibitionism. He was a slave to addiction; those addictions rotated through the years: drugs, sex, alcohol, exercise, and finally, and most damagingly, his own public image. But who could be shocked at his behavior? Who would have expected any other end? (If it is the end: the fashion world has a remarkable ability to shrug off the odd deeply flawed human being, as long as he or she can cut a dress like Galliano can or wear one like Kate Moss, who, despite behavior that sets a disastrous example for millions of girls, including issues with drugs, is forgiven because, well, she is really very pretty.)" [] Suzy Menkes reports that John Galliano will likely go to The Meadows rehab center, in Arizona. It has previously treated Elton John and Donatella Versace. She also writes that Galliano's namesake label, which is financially backed by Dior, "barely breaks even financially" and is produced under license. That any licensees will want to be associated with Galliano and his label now seems unlikely. [] Interesting facts about Dior's own profitability, from the Journal: "The label didn't begin to turn a profit until 2002, and since then it has struggled to improve its bottom line. Its sales of €826 million ($1.14 billion) and operating margin of 4.2% still lags far behind that of Louis Vuitton, with its estimated €5.5 billion in sales and 45% operating margin. Despite the lackluster performance, Mr. Arnault has continued to pour money into Dior, which insiders say has always been the businessman's pet project." [ Cathy Horyn reports that John Galliano did not contact Dior after his arrest, or during the weekend that preceded his firing from the house. Horyn notes "the lack of communication between the house and its star designer at such a crucial moment points to deeper strains." The Times fashion critic also says, "The only show I have ever stood to applaud was a Galliano show, six or seven years ago. He used a special casting of sideshow performers - twins, fat people, exceptionally tall people, freaks in most people's eyes — and he closed the show with a supermodel dangling a puppet in his likeness. The manipulated designer. But who was pulling whose strings?" [] More from Pat Field, who yesterday compared John Galliano's infamous "I love Hitler" video to the comedy of Mel Brooks: "I think Natalie Portman and others have been too quick to judge in this case without all the information being collected...Look, I'm not saying that anti-Semitism is acceptable in any way, because it is not. But I honestly believe that until the judicial process runs its course, any judgments should not be made so quickly. We live in a time where information gets out so quickly that things can get blurred without the full story being known. Nobody knows exactly what went on. John could have been being harassed and that's why he flew off the handle." [] Here is the inevitable drawing of John Galliano as a Nazi. [] There is a wild rumor that Riccardo Tisci, the creative director of Givenchy, will replace Galliano at Dior. Haider Ackermann will take over at Givenchy, and Stefano Pilati will be ousted in favor of Hedi Slimane at Yves Saint Laurent. [] One piece of good news for Galliano today? Never mind losing his job for being a racist dick: he's won back the rights to control the galliano.fr domain name, which had been taken over by a cyber-squatter. []In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.Kanye West showed his first collection on an all-star cast of (very very white!) models this weekend in Paris. (Okay, fine, there were two black models, but seriously, Ye?) The front row was stocked with some of the designers whose shows Kanye himself has attended for years, including Jeremy Scott, Joseph Altuzarra, Azzedine Alaïa, Alexander Wang, Dan and Dean Caten of DSquared2, and the Olsen twins. Editors, photographers, and celebrities (Ciara! Lindsay Lohan! Terry Richardson!) rounded out the pack. There were a lot of looks that were so thick with embellishments they looked as if they could have stood up independently. The collection wasn't exactly the samurai-inspired "sports-luxe thang" we . And the fashion press's pushback has been swift and ferocious. "I think that every one of the designers sitting in the front row at Kanye West must have had a deja vue [sic] moment at some point during the show," the International Herald-Tribune's Jessica Michault.The just-released Kardashian Kollection for Sears includes a pretty direct knock-off of a well-recognized Botkier handbag. The small label has sent a cease-and-desist letter to Sears. Designer Monica Botkier says that in fashion, intellectual property theft is "not necessarily about sticking on a fake label," but can occur when "you are actually taking someone's design idea." (The law on this point, at least in the U.S., is currently in the scope of its protections.) Steven Kolb, the director of the Council of Fashion Designers of America, says, "All designers deserve the right to design protection and only the creator of an original design should profit from that design. Taking someone's work and calling it your own is wrong and robs the designer of a rightful return of their investment." [] Taking a light-fingered approach to others' ideas is not new to the sisters K. Back when the Kardashians had a fashion line at Bebe — that is, before the chain determined the reality TV sisters had — they copied a distinctive Fendi dress with a hood and a built-in leather corset. (It was not an unknown or overlooked dress: it turned up on the red carpet and in magazines, and Jessica Stam wore it in Fendi's seasonal ad campaign.) At the time, Kim Kardashian wrote on her blog, "I've seen some talk online about certain pieces ‘knocking off' other designer's pieces and I'd like to share a little piece of fashion wisdom… the clothes you see in the chain stores at your mall are all inspired by designer, runway fashion!!! What stores like Bebe do is take runway fashion and use it as inspiration to create pieces that are wearable and accessible for everyone. To say any of our pieces are a knock off is like saying every item in every clothing store in your mall is a knock off." Gee, someone sure knows her Baudrillard. [, ] The Daily Beast reported yesterday that "multiple sources" — all anonymous — have pointed to Lucky editor (and prolific blogger) John Jannuzzi as the person behind the hilarious @CondeElevator Twitter account, which gained nearly 60,000 followers in a few days by Tweeting overheard conversations from the media giant's elevators, attracted the attention of Condé higher-ups, and then went dark yesterday. It's weird when things we on Twitter come...true? [] Except: Jannuzzi denies that he is @CondeElevator. [] Jannuzzi: "In other news, London was burning, stocks are all over the place and there's a bull loose in Queens." This is an awful lot of fuss to be making over a measly 35 pseudonymous Tweets. [@] Women's Wear Daily takes a crack at What It All Means: "The feed's brief time represented a medieval moment for the Internet, a recycling of culture to the point that it's difficult to remember what was so great about the original." ("The original" in this case being the old Gawker "Elevator Chronicles" from '03.) [] A team of Kazakh designers made this hair-helmet. We're not sure if this is, you know, "real," but Bret McKenzie did it better anyway. [ via ] Speaking of Photoshop, here's a new Diorskin ad with Natalie Portman. This is to our knowledge the first new ad Portman's done for Dior since the John Galliano racism scandal. [] Kristen Stewart looks...almost as if she doesn't hate us all on sight on the cover of W. []In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.Adorable, impossibly leggy seventeen-year-old is 's May cover girl, and does its best to convince you that nothing is better than being an "All-American" teen supermodel.Jane Keltner's piece focuses on how, despite logging 150,000 airline miles in the last year, working for Dior, Marc Jacobs, Karl Lagerfeld and Jason Wu and being the most photographed model in American Vogue in 2009, Karlie is a "down-to-earth, unassuming Midwesterner." For instance: Karlie spent the first day of New York Fashion Week making snow angels in Central Park. Karlie baked peanut butter cookies when she had a fitting with Alexander Wang; Karlie is reading The Great Gatsby and does her homework (backstage at fashion shows). We're sure this is all true; she seems to have a lovely personality and a strong support network. But while it's great that Karlie herself stays grounded, there's no mention of the pitfalls of modeling at a young age. The article doesn't touch on dressing or acting older than your age; the psychological impact of being paid for looking a certain way, the possibilities of being around drugs or alcohol, or the pressure to be thin (though the piece we're reading online is an edited version). Compare Karlie's charmed life to that of , the model , who walked runways for Tommy Hilfiger, Marc Jacobs and Richard Tyler when she was 13 but was told she needed to be "more skinny" by Parisian casting agents and had a meltdown before she was 15. Of course, we really can't expect Teen Vogue to delve into the negative aspects of being a teen model, and maybe Gerren's experience is not the norm. But the profile of Karlie makes it seem like being a teenage model is a dream job with zero drawbacks. (Interesting that there's an unrelated coverline: "13 Going On 30: Are You Growing Up Too Fast?") At least Karlie seems to know that she is privileged: "It's ridiculously corny," she says, "but I feel like I have the best of both worlds. I'm able to travel and work with these iconic people in the industry, and then come home to St. Louis, go to school, and see [my best friend] Brittney and my friends in class. I just keep thinking how lucky I am that I haven't had to sacrifice anything." , , , [Teen Vogue] Earlier: [Noted fashion photographer] and former model Nigel Barker says even though under-16-year-olds are not meant to be walking in New York fashion week shows this season, of the models he's seen, "they seem like they're all 16. It would be nice to see older people on the runways. The fashion industry has had an issue with weight for so many years, and we've been trying to address that, but still — very skinny and very young." The Council of Fashion Designers of America has long officially suggested that designers not hire girls under 16 to walk in their shows, and this season, the organization made the additional suggestion that models should be carded at castings. (This voluntary guideline has been ignored by some.) Barker makes the point that even if the minimum standard is now theoretically 16, that doesn't mean every runway model has to be exactly 16. They could be, you know, slightly older. "We should see fuller-figured girls, and older! Why don't we just see women? I mean, women are who buy the clothes. If you can't put them on a woman, what are you trying to say?" [] "I'm an old lady at 19," jokes Karlie Kloss. Although she started modeling at 13, and had two seasons of international runway work under her belt by her 16th birthday, she supports restricting runway work to models over age 16. "I think it's great. Because I started when I was 15, there's no doubt there are lots of things that I wish, um, you know, I dunno — I wish I would have been a little more mature. A little older. Because there's a lot. This career, there's a lot you have to handle and it's somewhat difficult when you're thrown into it and you don't really know what to do." [] Rihanna's first ad for Emporio Armani jeans — she is replacing Megan Fox as the, ahem, "face" of the brand — just dropped. [] The Cambridge Satchel Company, which makes those neon leather cross-body bags that have been all over the street style blogs for, oh, about a year now, says its sales are strong. Surprise, surprise. [] Transsexual model Lea T.'s campaign for the Brazilian swimwear brand Blue Man just came out. [] Kate Moss's childhood school photo is adorable. [] BREAKING: Anna Wintour laughed. []Kate Middleton wore a blue Reiss dress to a charity event — a dress which she's either had tucked away in her closet since 2008, or which she borrowed from her mother Carole, who wore an identical one to Ascot in 2010. That seems only fair, considering we have uncovered the fact that the fascinator mama Middleton wore with the blue dress was itself reported to be borrowed from Kate. There are layers upon layers here. We predict this thing goes deep. What else is this family sharing? [] Chinese model Liu Wen returned to her native Hunan province to shoot the cover of T magazine. In Hunan province, Liu posed at the ancient Yuelu Academy in Changsha, under a misty gray sky. Taking an optimistic view of the drizzle, she repeated an old Chinese saying: "Rain brings riches." At that moment, a group of Chinese tourists wandered through the impromptu set, trailing a woman with a microphone clipped to her collar: "Ladies and gentlemen, this way." Had she not become a model, she had planned to enter a local vocational school to become just such a tour guide. Now the crowd paid little attention to the tall slender woman wrapped for warmth in a blue parka. Only one young girl stopped and stared. Turning to a friend, she whispered, "She is so beautiful." Liu warmed to the familiar lilt of Hunan dialect. [] Karl Lagerfeld is on the new cover of i-D. [] Coach is launching a range of bags and accessories for men and women inspired by pieces from its archives called the Legacy Collection. They'll be pricey, topping out at over $1000 for a bag. [] Blogger Suzy Bubble's Twitter activism led Topshop to pull from sale a dress that closely resembled one by the young U.K. designer Yasmin Kianfar. Bubble argued that the little-known Kianfar was "too small a designer to be aping." [] Does Dov Charney's 16-year-old 1985 face make you want to buy t-shirts from his company? []In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.Katie Holmes' new gig as the face of Bobbi Brown cosmetics includes not only the usual ads, but a namesake collection of makeup set to hit stores next fall. It's a multi-year deal for which Holmes will be paid a rumored $2-$3 million. "I think it's amazing that Bobbi found a hole in the marketplace and said, ‘I'm going to do something about it. I'm going to create a line for real women who want to look pretty and have it be easy,'" says the actress. "I will be watching over every woman as she buys her lipstick," Holmes joked (her photo will appear on Bobbi Brown in-store displays). [] It's Britney, bitch — on the October cover of Elle. Yes, October already. [] Yesterday, Rachel Comey showed a spring collection that included some dressier options among the designer's easy-to-wear and subtly hip workwear and separates. We liked the details and textures: dimensional quilted fabrics, beaded embellishments that sparkled on shoulders or, even more gorgeously, at the breast pocket openings on a navy blue dress. Less successful were some looks with ruffles and one giant whorl of pink fabric. The prints, swimwear, and sunglasses were great as per usual. At last, more information and images from Carine Roitfeld's new project, CR Fashion Book. The magazine will be 340 pages, 150 of which will be ads — arranged in alphabetical order by brand. The magazine's editorial content will be around 90% fashion spreads and 10% written stories. Bruce Weber shot the cover of the first issue, and rumor has it that Kate Upton was his subject. [] Huh. Christian Dior launched a giant perfect-bound advertisement for itself magazine. On the first cover is Marion Cotillard. Reports Women's Wear Daily: "It's another way to communicate luxury," said Toledano, flipping through the heavy, velvety pages and stressing, "This is not a catalogue. It's fresh and modern. It's how we see ourselves; our own maison. I think it translates perfectly the mood of the company right now." [] This, friends, is the new Mert Alas and Marcus Piggott-directed video for Anna Dello Russo's song, "You Need A Fashion Shower." It doubles as a promotional video for the fashion editor's upcoming accessories collaboration with H&M. [] Pantone, the color company, has released its list of the top ten colors for spring 2013. Number 1 is "Monaco Blue," a sort of grayish maritime hue. "It speaks to the practicality that we are seeing in society," says a Pantone spokesperson. "You have to realize there is still concern out there for the economy." Adjust accordingly. []In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.Kim Kardashian married Kris Humphries just 73 blissful days ago. She wore two gowns by Vera Wang that day — gowns that Wang arranged to sell "affordable" $1500 versions of at David's Bridal. But the knock-offs won't reach stores until February, by which time Kim & Kris and their whole brightly choreographed happily-ever-after will be nothing but an afterimage on the retina of a paparazzo. Will people want to buy a wedding dress associated with divorce? Bear in mind, people were presumably willing in the first place to buy a wedding dress associated with Kim Kardashian. [] Janet Jackson is wearing Tom Ford on the new cover of Harper's Bazaar's Arabian edition. [] Raquel Zimmerman racked up another cover of Vogue Italia. Steven Meisel shot the supermodel in a lazily styled (one can practically hear them saying, "Fuckit, let's do Gaga again") editorial on the A/C/E line — and on some train cars whose design we don't recognize, perhaps they took a trip to the Transit Museum? Either way, the angry New Yorker in us is just happy our commute wasn't interrupted by this. [] Videos of Lindsey Wixson falling on the Versace runway last month have racked up tens of thousands of views on YouTube and garnered coverage from sources that rarely take an interest in models (unless they are dating actors and/or men who play with balls professionally), including the Daily Mail. What wasn't reported was that Wixson sprained her ankle in the fall. The next day, she went to hospital. "They wrapped my ankle and said that I couldn't take the bandages off for 10 days and that I had to ice it three times a day," says Wixson. She was forced to cancel her remaining Milan bookings, but rather than resting up in Paris, her agency sent her on castings where clients kept trying to get her to walk in heels. She booked Miu Miu, where she had to negotiate high-heeled boots on a runway that included several flights of stairs. There is no mention of Versace compensating Wixson for the cost of her medical treatment, or for her lost earnings. Models are independent contractors, meaning clients are not legally responsible for any kind of injury models might suffer on the job. [] This, friends, is Marc Jacobs' promised "very perverse and decadent" Cabaret-inspired Halloween costume. [] Just like she said she would, model Chrissy Teigen went to Heidi Klum's party as a kid from Toddlers & Tiaras. [@]Remember that that Anna Wintour had "banned" Kim Kardashian from Vogue and from the Met Ball, forcing Kanye to go stag? It apparently isn't a ban that extends to the international editions of the fashion bible. Kardashian Tweeted this photo, which she says came from an "Amazing shoot today for Vogue Italia!", CC'ing the stylist and the photographer. [@] But Vogue Italia editor Franca Sozzani soon clarified, also on Twitter, that the shoot was for L'uomo Vogue. Keep trying, Kim. [@] The new issue of American Vogue, meanwhile, is Olympic-themed, and stars three athletes on its cover: Serena Williams, swimmer Ryan Lochte, and soccer player Hope Solo. [] Inside, Karlie Kloss has an editorial with Lochte, basketball player Dwyane Wade, twin doubles tennis players Bob and Mike Bryan, decathlete Ashton Eaton, and gymnast Jonathan Horton. Vogue last used the model-perched-on-a-basketball-hoop visual trope, by the way, with Caroline Trentini in 2007. [] Fashionista has a look inside the costume department of the New York City Ballet. Eighteen full-time seamstresses built tutus and sewed costumes for the company's new production of Symphony in C. It takes about a week to make one tutu. [] Best Coast's Bethany Cosentino's Urban Outfitters collection is now on sale. []In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.Last night, the Council of Fashion Designers of America held its annual awards show, a night where celebrities applaud designers and models are treated like celebrities and Lady Gaga wears even more uncomfortable shoes than usual. Gaga arrived late to the red carpet, where her sister Natali Germanotta walked alongside her. Gaga wore a blue wig and a Mugler dress with an enormous train, which she later removed to accept her award. Anderson Cooper hosted the show — and treated the crowd to photos of his child modeling days — before running off, as Diane von Furstenberg put it, "to deal with a Weiner." Gaga was dubbed a Fashion Icon, Kanye West reminded us how much he loves Phoebe Philo, and Grace Coddington presented legendary photographer Arthur Elgort with a special tribute award. Elgort said in an interview that he doesn't know Terry Richardson's work. "I know the name but I don't know his style. I know the name because he had a father that was a photographer. In fact, his father was…very good. I couldn't tell you what Terry Richardson has done, but maybe he is very cool, I don't know." [] Some people don't think Lady Gaga deserved the CFDA's Fashion Icon award because she hasn't been around long enough to be an "icon." Friends, file this under pageview-trolling 101. [] Robin Givhan points out that before receiving her award, Lady Gaga "sat politely in the audience for what must have been a full hour" while wearing a bustier with a studded thong. [] Gaga used her speech to talk about her pet rat, and share an anecdote about texting with Anna Wintour. The Vogue editor texted her to give her the news of her win, see, but the Lady thought it was a different Anna, an Anna who works with her stylist, Nicola Formichetti, and so Gaga texted back, "Yes, bitch, we did it!" Anna Wintour replied, "How lovely, and we will all be waiting to see what you will wear." [] Prabal Gurung took home the Swarovski award for women's wear — he mentioned in his acceptance speech that his parents in Nepal seemed more excited for him to get a picture with Gaga than anything else. (Gurung also thanked the U.S. government, because his unemployment insurance helped him when he was just starting out.) Robert Geller won the Swarovski for men's wear, and Eddie Borgo for accessories. Men's wear designer of the year was Michael Bastian. Iris Apfel presented Alexander Wang with the prize for accessories designer of the year. Women's wear designer of the year went to Proenza Schouler. [] As of Sunday afternoon, Lifetime Achievement award-winner Marc Jacobs was taking in a polo match. He had not written his speech. "I've been struggling with writing it, to be honest. I'm not a good writer at all. Anytime anyone's ever asked me to write something, what I do is, I write notes and thoughts, and they build up and over a week I kind of edit through those thoughts. And then I try to put them in some order and then I reread it. Then I run it by somebody. Then I rewrite it. So it's kind of a process that has to happen over a course of days, and I think when the pressure is there, that's when it'll come. So tonight and tomorrow I'll get it together." [] Of the nineteen nominees for this year's CFDAs, only two were designed by women: Ashley and Mary-Kate Olsen's The Row, and accessories designer Pamela Love. Neither won. (Special awards were given to Philo, who nabbed the International Designer of the Year award, and Gaga.) This isn't unusual: in 2010 and 2009, there were also only two women nominees, and in 2007, there was just one. While CFDA president Diane von Furstenberg and executive director Steven Kolb wouldn't comment, the Fashion Institute of Technology's Valerie Steele suggests "The new young cool male designer might just be considered more marketable at the moment. I don't think it's conscious." The biggest issue, however, seems to be venture capital. FIT's student body is 85% female; the New School's, which includes Parsons, is 71%. But women don't get anything like equal access to venture capital. In 2009, less than 10% of all capital funding went to women entrepreneurs. [] Chloe Memisevic, an 18-year-old, Swedish-raised Serbo-Croatian model says that shooting her Marc Jacobs campaign with Juergen Teller took five minutes. [] Erin Beatty and Max Osterweis of Suno have a studio dog named Squid and books organized by spine color. [] Michael Jackson's "Thriller" jacket is up for auction. It's expected to fetch $200,000-$400,000. [] This new Lancôme campaign starring Daria Werbowy, Elettra Weidemann, and Arlenis Sosa is spooky-pretty. [] Anna de Rijk stood on a horse for the cover of Spanish Harper's Bazaar. [] We simply can't imagine why these camouflage-etched Trussardi sunglasses are only being made in an edition of 750. []In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.Lady Gaga is going to be a columnist for V. She says she will be covering "FASHION+ART," so at last we'll have someone to direct all our meat dress, latex, Alexander McQueen, and lobster hat-related wardrobe questions. Each issue, her column will feature a different head shot. Fans can contribute their own drawings of Gaga for consideration for the summer issue by April 3. [@, @] Britney Spears wears Dolce & Gabbana clothing in the (HEAVILY 'shopped) promo portraits for her new album. The designers are excited about this. "We love Britney and we love to dance to her new songs! We can't wait to hear the whole album! She has always been among our favourite artists...because she has been able to remain true to herself and to her style throughout the years. With her music she influenced and inspired generations of people for more than 10 years, always staying at the top, and we can't but congratulate her for this new, important achievement." []In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.Linda Evangelista recently in a court filing that the father of her 4-year-old son is not, as she'd claimed previously, "a Manhattan architect," but is in fact François-Henri Pinault — husband of Salma Hayek, father of her 3-year-old daughter, and one of the richest luxury tycoons in the world. Now in a new filing, the supermodel's lawyers have revealed that they are seeking $46,000 a month in child support. The judge in the case says that would be the biggest support order in New York family court history. Pinault, who is worth an estimated $11.5 billion, runs the conglomerate that owns Gucci, Alexander McQueen, Yves Saint Laurent, and Bottega Veneta, among other brands. According to Evangelista's lawyers, he donates $50,000 a month to an $11 million trust fund for his daughter with Hayek, but has never paid a cent for the care of Evangelista's son. Evangelista — who herself is worth around $11 million — wants, among other things, $175,000 a year for ex-police security and drivers, and $80,000 for a round-the-clock nanny. [] Glee's Dianna Agron is in a fashion spread in the new Flaunt. [] This fall's major luxury ad campaigns include three that feature very young celebrities: Hailee Steinfeld, 14, is the face of Miu Miu, Elle Fanning, 13, is the face of Marc by Marc Jacobs, and Dakota Fanning — who herself fronted Marc Jacobs when she was 13 — is now the 17-year-old face of Marc Jacobs' Lola perfume. This has various people Very Concerned about The Children and such. What these people are not concerned about, at all, as far as we can tell? Prada — which calls Miu Miu its "little sister" — shot a 13-year-old girl for its seasonal campaign. Her name is Ondria Hardin, she is pictured here at right, and she's a model from North Carolina. (She has turned 14 since the Prada ads were shot.) We suspect that it's because she's a model, and not a celebrity, that nobody particularly cared to report on her age. Models commonly begin their international careers at age 13-14. With proper supervision, a fashion shoot isn't necessarily an inappropriate place for a young teenager to be, but all of this alleged concern strikes us as bogus insofar as it extends to the famous teens who moonlight in this industry, but not the relatively anonymous (and much less privileged) girls who work in it every day. [] Philadelphia-raised Sessilee Lopez, who has been modeling since she was 14, says it took a long time for her to realize she had "made it." Even a cover of Vogue Italia, which she bagged back in 2008, didn't quite do it. "But then one day, I got recognized when I was back home by some, like, thugged-out, gangster dude. And I was like, ‘Wait, how does this guy know about me? He's not in fashion.' But he said, ‘You're the girl from here who made it. You made it! Know that! Own that!' He took a picture on his phone and said, ‘I'm going to put this on Facebook.'" Also, once Christian Siriano — whom Lopez calls one of her favorite designers to work with — put her in a dress that was so tight she couldn't sit down. "It was this feathery number. I was like, ‘Can I sit?' and he's laughing like, ‘Bitch, do you know how many hours I spent plucking those birds?'" [] Raquel Zimmerman stars in Alexander McQueen's gorgeous fall campaign. [] In other McQueen news, the Met's show, "Alexander McQueen: Savage Beauty," on Sunday night became the most popular Met Costume Institute show ever, when it welcomed its 582,000th visitor. Opening day attendance was higher than for any other special exhibit, save for a Van Gogh show the museum mounted in 2005. It later the Van Gogh show, and Savage Beauty doesn't close till August 7th. Determining which is the "most popular" Met show ever is difficult, because the museum mounts many different special exhibitions of varying durations. A show of Jeff Koons' "balloon" sculptures drew over 657,000 viewers, but it was up for six months. [] Jourdan Dunn and Natasha Poly are in a beauty editorial in the new Vogue Paris. [] Freja Beha Erichsen and her girlfriend Arizona Muse star in an editorial inside Freja's issue of British Vogue. [] Australian model Myfanwy Shepherd wears hand-painted shoes. Her life motto? "Don't fuck your friends." [] Terry Richardson shot Liza Minnelli for the new issue of LOVE. [] Dennis Hopper's photography is the basis for a new Vans collection. [] Well, this is...interesting. Sperm vendor, front-row , Republican filmmaker Vincent Gallo is in the new G Star campaign. [] Dennis Freedman, the former longtime creative director of W, took over as Barneys New York's chief window-dresser from Simon Doonan. So we're trying very hard not to automatically hate him and everything he does. His first effort at doing all of the store's windows includes a contribution from the architect Rafael de Cárdenas, who was inspired by a Fassbinder film. Another window display "was built from found materials such as recycled garbage and melted detritus." [] Speaking of garbage, Christian Louboutin made a pair of shoes out of trash. He calls them his "eco-pumps," and they cost $1095. []In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.Macy's is suing Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia for breach of contract, following the announcement that the Martha Stewart brand of homewares would be sold exclusively at J.C. Penney following the expiration of her current exclusive Macy's contract. The Macy's deal was set to expire this year, freeing Martha to shill muffin tins and bath mats at Penney's starting in 2013, but Macy's claims its contract allows them the option to renew for another five years. Macy's sure seems sad it lost its shiny toy, but we're team Martha on this one. Stewart may be 70, but we're in no doubt she could still cut a bitch. And smilingly dispose of the body in four handsome, home-y, and ecologically aware ways, if necessary. [] The Etam show in Paris sounds un-missable: Grace Jones, Gloria Gaynor, The Pointer Sisters, Sister Sledge, and Chaka Khan performed their hits live while the models walked. Grace Jones kicked things off, after briefly disappearing backstage — "She did the same thing at a Louis Vuitton show in Tokyo five years ago: she disappeared and then reappeared. What counts is that she reappears," joked brand owner and Louis Vuitton Moët Hennessy scion Antoine Arnault. And for a grand finale, all the singers got onstage to do "We Are Family." The show was also notable for being Arnault and Natalia Vodianova's first planned public appearance. Vodianova is a face of the lingerie brand, and she and Arnault have been dating for months (Vodianova confirmed last year she'd split from her husband, Justin Portman) but had avoided being photographed together. [] Arnault also shared his impressions of the luxury sector with the Telegraph. "We are going to enter an era in which logo and ostentation is going to be less successful," he says. "People are going to want more quality, and less ostentation. Especially in a world in economic crisis: you don't want to be seen with evidently expensive products. Just something that is beautiful." When are these guys ever not selling "real luxury" over "mere logos"? Jesus. That's like the oldest trick in the luxury book. Arnault also says Christian Dior is in no hurry to name a creative director, even though nearly a year has passed since the firing of John Galliano (for being ). "People say 'What's going on?' but inside [Dior] people are absolutely Zen about it. There is no urgency at all." Just picture the entire Dior atelier in lotus pose, saying "Om. We are not racist. Om." [] Chanel's couture show was held on a set that looked like an airplane. Karl Lagerfeld loves to fly, you see; he finds it terribly relaxing. There was a beverage cart, and guests entered via a long, metal-paneled hallway that looked like an airport skyway. The whole thing took five days to build. We have a full review and photos coming soon. [, ] Here's a first look at the ad for Jason Wu's Target collection, featuring the mas-cat, Milu. [] Missoni has an unusual model fronting its spring campaign: Pedro Almodóvar. Juergen Teller shot the director, Angela, Teresa, and Margherita Missoni, and actresses Rossy de Palma and Blanca Suarez. The only model in the ads is Mariacarla Boscono. The campaign was shot at a Madrid restaurant called Villa Rosa, which will be familiar to fans of Almodóvar's film High Heels. [] Model Maria Bradley hails from Wichita, Kansas. Her first fashion show in New York City was for Alexander Wang, which she opened. "I had done local shows in Kansas, but in a mall, and there's a curtain we're all behind. This was nothing like anything I had ever done before. When I got there, I walked into that giant warehouse on the pier, and I was like, 'Oh…my…god,'" she says. "It was like a stadium setup back there, with like 100 people running around." Bradley, who is 17, has since traveled internationally for the first time thanks to her new job. "I had no idea the fashion world was like this. I mean, when I shot in Kansas, it was like at a Humane Society, holding puppies, and now I was thrown into this." [] There is speculation that Freja Beha Erichsen and Arizona Muse were dropped from the Chloé campaign after paparazzi photographs of them on the set emerged. To be fair, they were shooting at the Chateau Marmont, which is like the Mecca of paparazzi (in this cosmology we just made up right now, the Ivy would be their Dome of the Rock, and let's say the Grove is the paparazzi Vatican). Now, the final campaign has emerged, and it stars not Erichsen and Muse but Karmen Pedaru and Kate King. Maybe modeling's favorite lesbian couple were dropped. Or maybe they were shooting something else entirely — a campaign video, say. [] Speaking of campaigns, Kate Moss was shot by Terry Richardson for Mango's spring ads. Women's Wear Daily posted the images this morning, but has since pulled them. Not before we grabbed them, though. []In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.There's a bumper crop of Met Ball fashion gossip this morning. When asked on the red carpet how she felt in her teal Stella McCartney dress, Madonna told a reporter, "A little bit fat." Really? Knowing that makes us kinda sad. [] Unlike , Anna Wintour did not dance at the Met Ball. Even when Jay-Z and Beyoncé implored her to. [] Gisele Bündchen told reporters that the rumors she's making Tom Brady grow his hair long are false. "I think he does whatever he wants to," she explained. [] Tickets to the gala, by the way, set non-special-celebrity-model-guest attendees back $100,000-$250,000. Two were snapped up by billionaire hedge fund founder and art collector Steven Cohen. [] Taylor Swift and Sandra Lee apparently got on like a house on fire. [] Beyoncé's Pucci dress — in which she could barely walk — has drawn mostly negative reactions from fashion critics. But not André Leon Talley! He put Bey top of his list of best-dressed attendees. Also on André Leon Talley's list? André Leon Talley. He explains: "Nicolas Ghesquière designed my 80-meter-long French silk faille manteau de cour in LeCorbusier blue, which I wore over my favorite midnight-blue Ralph Lauren dinner suit with shawl collar, Charvet shirt, and bowtie, and Roger Vivier court shoes in framboise. Yours truly decided I was a top note-and why not?!" Um, Le Corbusier's signature color was white. (Don't take it from us, take it from the dude with a Master's in modern architecture we just asked.) [] Iman allowed New York to film her getting ready, and she is just so funny and charming it's kind of incredible. [] Ayelet Waldman: "I went to the Met Ball once. It was achingly dull. All these celebs trying to be seen w/ more famous celebs." [@] Blake Lively and Karl Lagerfeld went to a diner on Madison Avenue together just before the ball, and there is a photo to prove it. [] Livia Firth, meanwhile, Tweeted pictures of Rihanna and Lauren Hutton gathering in the bathrooms — and caught Hilary Alexander smoking inside. [@, via ] Makeup artist William Lemon III created these face-landscapes for a music video. [] Kate Bosworth will make "her singing début" in one of those "Cotton: The Fabric of My Life" campaigns. And here we thought she was holding out for "Milk: It Does A Body Good." [] Alexa Chung is on the June cover of British Vogue. [] The Daily Mail has over one thousand words to dedicate to this £90 Jil Sander bag, which is, yes, designed to look like a plastic shopping bag. [] Patterned temporary lip tattoos: a thing that now exists. []In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.Anna Wintour, shot by Vogue Mario Testino, appears on the cover of the new issue of WSJ. Editor Deborah Needleman reminds us of the longtime Vogue editor-in-chief's importance: "She's a really powerful figure in America ... someone whose power extends beyond what she does." See, she's powerful because she has power! Marc Jacobs — whose career has been greatly aided at various turns by Wintour's patronage — explains that he cannot tell her no. "If I get a request for something, there aren't two possible answers. First I get an email, then a phone call from someone at Vogue, and now I don't even bother to say no — I know the next call is from her." [] Retouchers in Dubai gave Gisele Bündchen a Photoshop tank top for her H&M ads. [] Tom Ford — the last person on earth who needs a loudspeaker, pretty much — was given one for this cover of Another Man. [] Julia Restoin-Roitfeld AND HER NIPPLES star on the cover of Russian Tatler. []Women's Wear Daily is reporting that Bernard Arnault has at last found a replacement for John Galliano at Christian Dior, the €21 billion luxury brand that is one of the biggest and sparkliest jewels in LVMH's crown. According to "sources," Marc Jacobs is in "talks" to leave Louis Vuitton to take over Dior. Phoebe Philo, who currently designs for Céline, might replace Jacobs at Vuitton in addition to her current work. Galliano was this spring after making a series of drunken, racist rants to strangers in a Paris bistro; one of the outbursts was caught on , and the disgraced designer under France's strict hate speech laws. LVMH, Dior's parent company, has taken its time in replacing him — it even let a couture season occur while the house was rudderless. If he were appointed, Marc Jacobs would be the first American (and in fact the first non-European of any nationality) to design for Dior. The Dior job search has been the subject of intense speculation; earlier this year, Fashionista that Givenchy creative director Riccardo Tisci was all but set to take the job. [] In other Galliano news, the Times of London reported this Sunday that the designer's longtime friend and right-hand man at Dior Steven Robinson, whose 2007 death is said to have contributed to Galliano's downward spiral into drug and alcohol abuse, was not, as had been reported, a heart attack. Instead, Robinson died at 38 of a massive overdose of cocaine. His dealer, a man named Alassane Seck, was charged with involuntary manslaughter, and convicted — but the case was tried in France in private, and the transcripts were permanently sealed. Galliano even testified. Lawyers for Seck say that this was a cover-up, because Seck was a dealer to powerful figures in France's cultural and political elite. (Allegedly, one of his former clients was a godfather to Carla Bruni's son.) [, ] Kim, Khloe and Kourtney Kardashian will deliver the keynote address at a social media conference organized by Lucky magazine. Also present to hand down their wisdom? Essie Weingarten of Essie, Rodger Berman of Rachel Zoe Inc., Diane von Furstenberg, and Coco Rocha. [] Kate Bosworth is the new face of Vanessa Bruno. In the video, she rides a white horse through a snowy Nordic landscape. Interesting. [] In 1996, a 16-year-old modeling newcomer named James King was trailed around her first show season by Jennifer Egan — who herself modeled briefly in the 1980s, and who has used the industry in her fiction writing, too. The resulting New York Times Magazine cover , entitled "James is a Girl," remains one of the best pieces of journalism ever written about the modeling industry. King is pictured here on the left as the magazine photographed her at 16, and on the right as she is today. This weekend, the Times magazine did a feature where it caught up with some of its former subjects, to ask them how they felt about their portrayal in the magazine, and to reflect on the intervening years. This is what King said: At 16 years old, you think you know everything, and then all of a sudden you realize that you don't know anything at all. That is the best way to explain what I was feeling at that time. I had grand illusions of what I thought modeling would be, as any young girl would. I was working with these masters in fashion and photography and learning from brilliant, creative people from around the world. But at the same time, I didn't realize the weight of responsibility that I would carry, to have the same expectations put upon you as a minor that an adult would have. I was just a kid; I didn't realize the freedom of youth that I was going be trading in for success. I became very successful, and I didn't know how to handle that. I felt like some people wanted a piece of me, wanted to take something from me. I felt that they wanted to sexualize me. In hindsight, I can see that and know the truth of it, but at that time I didn't know that's what they were doing. I just thought, Oh, I'm suddenly successful and all my dreams are coming true, but why do I feel so scared? I experimented with drugs; I was young and wanted to ‘‘fit in.'' I quickly realized this wasn't the path for me, and I haven't touched any drug since I was 17. I'm an actor now on an upcoming show on the CW, ‘‘Hart of Dixie.'' I wish that I would have known how to have a career and be a kid at the same time. I think for the fashion industry that can happen only if they have a union for the young models as they do for the young actors. [] Skechers is being sued by three models for using their photos improperly. The models allege that they were each paid to shoot ad campaigns that, per the terms of their contracts, were to run for a limited time period and only in certain world markets — which are standard photo usage provisions for a campaign contract. Skechers then "disregarded these limitations and embarked on a successful worldwide branding campaign that was built around the images of these young models," said the models' attorney, David Shraga, who added that the company preyed on the inexperienced, up-and-coming models by taking the chance that the mis-use of the images would go unnoticed because it occurred overseas. Skechers had no comment on the lawsuit, but the company was on similar grounds by a fashion photographer in 2010. Richard Reinsdorf claimed that ads he'd done for Skechers in 2006 like the one pictured here had been re-used by the company in breach of his contract, without compensation. Reinsdorf's case is ongoing; he seeks $250 million in damages. The three models are after a comparatively modest $10 million. [] Rachel Weisz made the cover of September's WSJ. magazine. [] Competitor T magazine interviewed models Kinga Rajzak and Lily Cole, who graduated from University College London and Cambridge, respectively, this spring. Rajzak earned a B.A. with honors in sociology and politics, and Cole earned an M.A. with a double first in art history. Cole says of campus life, "The Kills came to play on campus once, which was fun, as I'm friends with Jamie Hince. It was my first year, and he didn't wager high stakes on me seeing it through three years. I suppose I won that bet." [] Rick "Zombie Boy" Genest and Andrej Pejic: united at last. []In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted. There is a real-life Edina Monsoon, you guys, and her name is Lynne Franks. Franks was a notorious player in London's fashion P.R. industry in the '80s and '90s, and was friends with Jennifer Saunders, who based the character of Eddie on her. Franks seems to own the whole Absolutely Fabulous thing — she titled her '97 memoir Absolutely Now and says she loves the series, which is coming back for three more episodes this winter — but has one quibble: "I like to think that my taste in clothing was marginally better than Christian Lacroix," she says. "But the show was pretty spot on, actually." Katherine Hamnett, a designer Franks once represented, described meeting her as being "like an avalanche hitting you." Franks was legendary for her parties ("It was the most genius party — very aristo-posh English — with transvestites"), her power, her insane outfits (she wore a dirndl and orange-and-purple hair to Studio 54 — while eight months pregnant), her drug and alcohol use (she once passed out in a bowl of onion soup at 5 a.m.), and her neglectful parenting. When she quit P.R. in the early '90s, she became a Buddhist. Now she dotes on a Labrador-Jack Russell cross called Noodle, runs a women-only business club she founded, and basically, Lynne Franks is our hero. In her honor, let's re-watch the "Is it a bee?" bit. Lynne Franks, we raise our Bolli-Stolis in your general direction. [] The Hunger Games nail polish line has inspired a parody. It includes colors like "Important Reminder Purple" — the bottle comes marked with "This is a death tournament, not a fashion show" — and "Greasy Sae Surprise," the color of raccoon gallbladder. [] Deborah Turbeville shot Valentino's spring campaign in Guanajuato, Mexico. [] Michael Pitt — who played Kurt Cobain in that Gus Van Sant movie — is now a face of Prada. In 2005, Pitt actually turned down a Miu Miu campaign (Miu Miu had men's wear back then) because he didn't think it would be good for his image. [] Prada, by the way, is selling these headphones for $595. [] Holy eyebrows, it's the new YSL campaign. [] Early concept sketches for Emma Watson's Lancôme campaign have leaked. And they are really pretty. [] Saskia De Brauw, who as we now has pubic hair, is on the new cover of Vogue Japan. []In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.Last night at the White House state dinner honoring British prime minister David Cameron, Michelle Obama wore Marchesa — a fashion line designed by two Brits, headquartered in New York, and boosted into the consciousness by Hollywood. Samantha Cameron wore the British designer Alessandra Rich. Anna Wintour dusted off a perfectly good black-and-white Chanel haute couture gown she was last spotted wearing to the Met Ball in 2009. [] Model Chrissy Teigen was invited, and she live-Tweeted the whole thing. Including what the guests for dinner, how quickly her fiancé John Legend his shirt, and the time she accidentally an extension out of her head in Michelle Obama's office. [@] Here are five more of the shoes Madonna thinks you'll pay up to $349 for, in addition to the three we earlier. [] Here is a Chanel ad directed by Kathryn Bigelow, the first woman to win a Best Director Oscar. The brand hired pro surfer Danny Fuller to be the face of its latest men's fragrance. Fuller managed to wear RVCA board shorts and ride a non-Chanel board. For his efforts he was paid "a lot more than $40,000. My kids are going to private school now." [] Karl Lagerfeld listed his Gramercy Park apartment — again — for $5.2 million this time. Though the designer has owned it since 2006, it is not clear from the listing description and pictures whether he ever moved in. [] Time's Style & Design supplement is back after being suspended in 2009. And its first new cover features Emily Blunt wearing the Balenciaga Darth Vader visor. An interesting choice. [] Snooki knocked off the famous Alexander McQueen "Knucklebox" clutch. Also, Snooki has a handbag line now! Previously in Alexander McQueen knucklebox knock-offs: . [] The Kardashians are still advertising their Sears lingerie line. []In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.If you think the model in editorial for Canadian boutique Ssense is enjoying her dog's company a little bit too much, you should see the rest of the shoot. (Borderline NSFW). Clothes mostly by Alexander Wang, whose name I cannot bring myself to pun on. The dog's name is Jackson. The site's commenters are divided on whether this constitutes bestiality chic or something more exalted. One was inspired to wax rather eloquent: For the simple or corrupt minded i will explain how these series of pictures actually tell a story, a beautiful story which every one can relate to. a story of boy meets girl. Pic 1 woman is clearly trying to attract a mate, which is clear by her accentuating her beautiful body with sexy clothing. The dog represents the inner beast in every man which is brought forth. You can see them in a lustful embrace, the start of every relationship. pic2 He longs for her yet she plays hard to get. but eventually he is clearly successful as we can see in the 3rd pic. She as total control of him. He is not a beast any longer, but rather HER BITCH! Right. There's , along the same lines. As it turns out, this shoot is by the same photography team — — that just brought us the much-lauded Elle Canada with Crystal Renn. Their rep has agreed to make them available for an interview this weekend to shed some more light. Your questions for them in the comments. [SSense] Related: [Official Site] Earlier: Whether or not they're engaged, Naomi Campbell's Russian (and still legally married!) billionaire boyfriend Vladislav Doronin has built her this, Campbell's new holiday house on a private island in Turkey. The house is shaped like the eye of Horus, "an ancient Egyptian symbol of protection, royal power and good health." Horus, in addition to being the falcon-shaped son of Isis and Osiris, was the God of the sky, of war, and of protection. Horus House. Naturally. [] Armani released more photos of Rafael Nadal without his shirt. Shirtless Rafael Nadal, y'all. [] Nobody was allowed to photograph the Tom Ford collection because Tom Ford loves to tease the press. The Telegraph's Lisa Armstrong offers these "sketches," which she calls "terrible," in lieu. [] But! Victoria's Secret Angel and face of Tom Ford Candice Swanepoel Tweeted this photo of the look board from backstage. She took it down, but not before the folks at the Fashion Spot took note. [] Alexander Wang, Sophie Théallet, and Billy Reid designed t-shirts for Starbucks' 40th anniversary. The result? This Alexander Wang unisex spilled-coffee t-shirt that costs $85. [] The Wall Street Journal published a review of Giles Deacon's London Fashion Week show, but ran pictures from a ballet charity event with it instead of actual runway photos. The story went live yesterday and has yet to be corrected. [ via ]In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.Fashion photographers Inez van Lamsweerde and Vinoodh Matadin shot Lady Gaga in a video for Mugler — Gaga apparently could not make an appearance at the women's wear show, as she did last season. (Her stylist Nicola Formichetti is the creative director of the newly relaunched brand.) The video seems to focus on teeth, and Gaga says things like, "Do not anger the mugler woman she will eat you," and repeats "Don't fuck with Mugler," while staring at the camera. [] The Mugler collection is getting slammed by most critics. The Associated Press wrote: "The alchemy was off at the house of Mugler, where Lady Gaga's stylist, Nicola Formichetti, again failed to live up to his reputation as a sort of Generation Y Midas who turns everything he touches into gold." Key terms: disappointment, fizzled, less-than-convincing, willfully wacky, "buzz does not a fashion house make." [] Women's Wear Daily just called it "Bland." [] And Christina Binkley of the Wall Street Journal wrote, "It was a melange of the trends of the past 15 years: Beige from 2010, articulated shoulders from 2009, gothic, asymmetrical cuts from Helmut Lang." [] Meanwhile, Lady Gaga is suing a company that sold jewelry and cosmetics under her name and tried to register "Lady Gaga" and "Lady Gaga Fame" as trademarks. [] Scott Schuman (of The Sartorialist fame) had some choice things to say about Tavi Gevinson in a new interview. Schuman expresses doubts about the real size of her audience, and calls her success "a bit of a conspiracy by established print media that wanted to show that this blog thing is not that important, that it's done by a bunch of twelve year olds." Schuman says Gevinson is limited in her perspective because "she has never had a boyfriend or any of that kind of stuff. She's just a kid, so she can talk about art and stuff only in an abstract way." Oh, and she "steals" her photos. (We're pretty sure Gevinson has hired a lot of photographers to shoot for .) Schuman also casually mentions thathe makes "a good fraction of a million dollars: more than a quarter million and less than a half a million" from advertisementson his blog alone. The problem with Schuman, as revealed every time he's ever opened his mouth in the presence of a reporter, is this: he's a good photographer who has absolutely zero gift for written or verbal communications — and worse, he seems to have no sense of the value of skills he does not personally possess. Does he even realize he sounds like a 43-year-old braggart talking about how much richer and more successful he is than a 15-year-old girl? [] Apparently, "A Streetcar Named Desire" is known as "Un Tramway" in French. Oh, and also, some benches collapsed at the Balenciaga show, "with some editors falling flat on their backs." Carine Roitfeld, invited to Balenciaga in a sign of rapprochement for the first time since that involving the samples, "with a bump." So everyone had to stand to watch the show, meaning those not in the front row probably saw none of it. In other news you can use, Salma Hayek tore some ligaments in her ankle, then twisted it again, and is now bandaged up. You can see the bandage in of Hayek, who's watching the show alongside her husband, François-Henri Pinault, Catherine Deneuve, Anna Wintour, Grace Coddington, and Hamish Bowles. [] Seventeen-year-old Wichita-raised model Maria Bradley debuted at Alexander Wang, walked Proenza Schouler, and did exclusives in Milan and Paris for Versace and Balenciaga, respectively. Here's what she says about her childhood: "My mom did anything and everything for the family — she is always there for us. I know everyone says they want to be like their mom, but once, when I was younger, I even went as far as cutting my hair, just so I could be like her. Except afterward, I hid it in my play kitchen and blamed my dog for cutting it." She says the "craziest" thing she's seen backstage so far is "Forty pairs of mangled model feet." [] Lindsey Wixson, the 17-year-old model from Kansas, is rumored to be dating 24-year-old Theo Wenner, Jan Wenner's son. he is pictured with his arm around her. [] Andrej Pejic has been invited to Buckingham Palace to meet the Queen. Palace officials say Pejic can come dressed however he wants. "The recommended dress code for receptions at Buckingham Palace is Day Dress/Lounge Suit. However, this is for guidance only and guests are welcome to wear whatever they feel comfortable in." That goes some way to explaining Lady Gaga's red latex bondage suit, then. []In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.And if you're a ladymag, that's a problem. The entire magazine industry saw a circulation slump in the second half of 2011, with newsstand sales declining by 10% on average. But many ladymags fared worse: Elle was down over 18%, year-on-year, InStyle fell by over 14%, and Allure declined by over 13%. Glamour, Marie Claire, and W were down by 10%, 9%, and 7%, respectively. The "winners" in this dismal six months were Vogueand Lucky , which still saw their newsstand sales fall by 5% each. Aside from terrible cover lines, stories that underestimate the intelligence of their readers, and predictable fashion spreads that present an extremely narrow idea of female beauty, what's wrong with today's ladymags? [] Marc Jacobs — who said that being caricatured on South Park was a bigger honor than winning a lifetime achievement award from the Council of Fashion Designers of America — put Cartman, Randy, and Butters on his latest line of t-shirts to raise money for skin cancer. They cost $35 each. Robert Duffy says Trey Parker and Matt Stone were very protective of their brand. "I really wanted to do Kenny, but they said there was absolutely no way they were going to let me use Kenny," Duffy said. "I wanted to see what he looks like without his coat." [] Michelle Williams modeled for a Boy by Band of Outsiders lookbook. [] Diane von Furstenberg's apartment is in Architectural Digest. Agyness: this is how you do leopard-print carpet. []Male model Andrej Pejic, famous for his androgynous good looks and his ability to work a runway in men's wear or a Gaultier wedding dress, has landed his first job actually modeling lingerie. The Dutch chain Hema hired the Australian to advertise its line of push-up bras. Which obviously seem to work as intended (though we strongly suspect some chicken cutlets came out of the stylist's bag of tricks, too). Pejic, whose cover of art mag Dossier in opaque plastic bags after Barnes & Noble complained about his nude torso, has in interviews that he doesn't necessarily prefer being styled as a woman or as a man, but that he appreciates the variety of work available to him. "To me, it doesn't really matter. I don't really have that sort of strong gender identity — I identify as what I am." This morning, he Tweeted, "Did I ever think I had enough booty to advertise a push-up bra? No. But am I working it or what??" [, ] Approximately three zillion fashion designers have been reportedly considered for the top job at Christian Dior, which fired its longtime creative director John Galliano ten months ago after he was arrested for hurling racist and anti-Semitic invective at a couple in a Paris café. Marc Jacobs was said to be very close to taking the job, but then word came that negotiations had broken down. Riccardo Tisci was also supposedly a front-runner. Even Alexander Wang's name was thrown into the ring, despite his lack of experience with couture. Today, Women's Wear Daily ran a story saying that Raf Simons — who currently designs for Jil Sander — is very close to taking the job. Simons started his career as an industrial and furniture designer, and launched his men's wear collection in 1995. He began designing women's wear in 2005. [] Cathy Horyn, one of the many critics who have praised Simons' collections for Jil Sander, is on board with this idea. "If judged solely as a minimalist, Mr. Simons might seem an odd fit for romantic Dior, but his Jil Sander collections are actually proof of a nimble mind that seeks a broader aesthetic expression. And Dior is much more than the crinoline narratives that its former designer, John Galliano, adored." [] Nail polish: as you probably know, it's kind of having a moment. As previously reported, nail polish sales rose by 59% during the year through October, compared with the same period of 2010. According to Gallup, 64% of American women use nail polish once a week or more. Three thousand Wal-Mart stores sold out of Justin Bieber's OPI collection on the day it went on sale. Fashionista summarizes the year in nails, in numbers. Our DIY on the '30s-style "Moon" manicure, meanwhile, is among the most-read DIYs of 2011. [] Taiwanese Elle put Hello Kitty on a cover. Actually, two. [] Two additional new face models, both 15, have been confirmed for Balenciaga's spring campaign, and one of them has eyebrows that are just so wrong for her face. Oh honey, no! Those don't do you justice. Eyebrows: always . []In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.This is not good: über-cool hipster-y fashion chain Opening Ceremony's online boutique was hacked on February 16th, and the company didn't notice the malicious code until more than a month later, on March 21st. And even though it seems that the hackers "may have accessed the names, addresses, and credit card information of customers who purchased an item on our website during this period," according to the store, it chose not to alert customers to this fact until on May 4. Seriously? Three months after the fact, you see fit to let your customers know their credit-card data was compromised? What the fuck, Opening Ceremony? [] If you haven't gotten enough of Met Ball , here are some TwitPics from the event and its assorted after-parties. Coco Rocha and Alexander Wang proved especially diligent Tweeters, with Rocha sharing photos of the , Zac Posen and Amber Heard , and her , and Wang Tweeting shots of the , , , and . Fashionista has a round-up of those and other Tweets. [, @, @] Rihanna, for example, Twitpic'd this photo of Lala Anthony's cleavage. To be fair, Lala Anthony's cleavage is very impressive. [@] Are you interested in a rare chance to see some Steven Meisel prints up close? Are you really, really rich? Potential collectors are invited to make an appointment at the photographer's studio to view a selection of prints currently offered for sale. [] An Australian graffiti artist named R.J. Williams (no relation to the child actor, presumably) is threatening to sue Madonna for infringing upon his trademarked logo. Williams alleges that the logo used by Madonna's upcoming perfume and clothing line is too close to the logo for his company, The Massive Corporation, which he registered in Australia last year. [, ] Gisele Bündchen is the newest face of David Yurman. [] Trina Turk is doing a summery capsule collection for Banana Republic. Coco Rocha is the face of the line. "The Slim Aarons photo of ladies having drinks at the pool has been an inspiration for our brand," says Turk. []In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.The instant critical response to Kate Middleton's very restrained and elegant lace Alexander McQueen wedding dress ranges from positive to outright raving. Put at the Telegraph on the over-the-moon end of the spectrum: "Middleton stepped out of the vintage Rolls Royce Phantom VI and into the pages of royal and fashion history. Fabulous, fashionable and fairytale, the dress was fit for a queen-to-be and combined the style of a modern princess with that of a 20th Century princess, namely Grace Kelly." American Vogue's Sarah Mower also drew a connection to Grace Kelly's wedding dress, but called Middleton's "an exquisitely modern example of a personal collaboration between a bride and her designer...Technically faultless in its scale and construction, the dress allowed the bride to move with ease, carrying all the weight of British history and expectation without the slightest wrinkle or hitch." See, the train had to be long, because it was full of hopes and dreams. Robin Givhan at the Daily Beast saw something sour in those same great expectations, writing that the dress "destined, doomed to be a disappointment — if only because so much was expected of it." But fundamentally, she says, "It was a dignified acknowledgement of Arts and Crafts tradition but bore the streamlined, body-enhancing silhouette of contemporary fashion." (Givhan was cribbing pretty obviously from Clarence House's own , which said Middleton's chosen dress "pays tribute to the Arts and Crafts tradition…Ms. Burton's design draws on this heritage, giving the cut and the intricate embellishment a distinctive, contemporary and feminine character.") [, Vogue, ] Among designers, reactions are also positive. "The dress is classic and goes very well in the Westminster decor," says Karl Lagerfeld. "It almost reminds me of (Queen) Elizabeth's wedding, the royal weddings in the Fifties. The proportion of the train is good. The lace is very pretty. I like the veil a lot." Christian Lacroix called the dress "simpler than expected: A combination just in between 1956 Grace Kelly and 1947 Queen Elizabeth dress." He added, "Prince William's red Irish uniform is gorgeous." Hubert de Givenchy: "The dress is very simple and very nice. The veil is a little flat, but because she has such a lovely face, she can afford to wear it this way." Donatella Versace: "very regal." Ann-Sofie Johansson of H&M: "The lace together with the long sleeves really showed the craftsmanship and hours of work that has gone into creating a dress like this." Valentino: "Compared to the famous Diana's dress, Diana's was a dress of a fairytale princess.. still a dress everybody remembers.. Kate's one is a very pretty, modern dress that will be copied everywhere but lacks that fairytale element. Today most of the new princesses are young, modern, non-royal women who have clear ideas, independence from stiff protocol.. they want to be themselves and not anymore a symbol of the crown." Rumors that McQueen was the maker of the dress after Sarah Burton was spotted ducking into Kate Middleton's hotel yesterday afternoon. Although she was wearing an enormous parka with a fur-lined hat to obscure her face, Burton was identified by journalists who recognized her distinctively buckled belt and shoes. (Pulitzers for that lot.) [, ] Coco Rocha liked the finished product so much that she just Sarah Burton would be named the new creative director of Christian Dior. Bernard Arnault, the head of Dior's parent company, had been to be waiting to see if Burton indeed was designing Middleton's dress before making his final decision. [@] The dress featured extensive hand-done Carrickmacross lace, a style of lace-making that was developed in Ireland in the 1820s. The body of the dress was lace-appliquéd silk gazar, a fabric invented by the house of Abraham at the behest of Cristóbal Balenciaga, who desired a silk that could hold its form with quasi-architectural crispness. The dress closed with 58 — count them! — organza-covered buttons. Sarah Burton said in a statement, "It has been the experience of a lifetime to work with Catherine Middleton to create her wedding dress, and I have enjoyed every moment of it. It was such an incredible honor to be asked, and I am so proud of what we and the Alexander McQueen team have created. I am delighted that the dress represents the best of British craftsmanship." It is pretty funny that Alexander McQueen ended up with this commission, because McQueen's own thoughts on the monarchy were far less conciliatory than those Burton will own publicly. When McQueen was an apprentice at Savile Row tailors Gieves & Hawkes, which makes Prince Charles' clothing, McQueen pad-stitched "I am a cunt" onto the interlining of one of His Royal Highness' jackets. [] Kate Middleton did her own makeup for the wedding. The makeup artist who tended to Chelsea Clinton on the day of her nuptials thinks Middleton "did a good job." [] Maybe you care about Princess Michael of Kent's dyed-to-match shoes? We, um, don't. [] Joan Rivers on the wedding: "It's very exciting. I sent them a George Foreman grill. I think they'll like it. I would like to see them on the royal balcony grilling." [] Princess Beatrice's very tall Philip Treacy fascinator made this roundup of the best royal wedding hats. (Have you yet? We are wearing ours and feeling ever so slightly royal!) The opinion is not universal: this morning, Marie Claire editor-in-chief Joanna Coles said the hat made Beatrice look as though she was "being attacked by snakes from above." [, ] Gisele Bündchen hung out in the window of a C&A store, because she is the face of the fast-fashion chain. [] Got $25,000? Calvin Klein is selling his '85 Porsche 911 2-door cabriolet on eBay. Only 59,000 miles. [] Missoni's random collaboration with Havaianas has given us $130 flip-flops. [] Leighton Meester danced and sang to herself while shooting this new ad for Vera Wang perfume. [] Karl Lagerfeld, who as we all know doesn't eat sugar, nonetheless designed a hotel room made of chocolate for his promotional deal with the ice cream brand Magnum. The room comes with a resident: a a milk-chocolate statue of Karl's favorite, Baptiste Giabiconi. His underwear is white chocolate. []In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted. The clothes are '70s-inspired and very tailored, with a heavy reliance on capes and flared, shoe-eating pants. The line includes accessories and footwear, and it'll retail for $250-$700. "I'm a Virgo and I'm more — I don't want to say negative — but I'm the girl who thinks no one's coming to my birthday party, no one's buying my clothes, no one's reading my book, no one's watching my show — that's just how I think," says Zoe. "The same applies to this. I don't want to let people down." []Admit it: You guys want to write for Vogue! Why else would the glossy mag inspire such epic and amazing comments?Best Comment Of The Day, in response to : "Two idols, both alike in obscurity/In fair Florida, where we lay our scene/From ancient grudge break to new mutiny/Where reptile blood makes reptile-lover hands unclean." • Best Comment Of The Day, in response to : "I always pictured America's manliest city as more of a Samantha." • Best Comment Of The Day, in response to : "I am not a science person but I fail to see how abortion would increase your risk of cancer. Is cancer just judgey?" • Best Comment Of The Day, in response to : "I will INVOKE meaningless POWER WORDS designed to cultivate an image of APPROACHABILITY without so much as a sideways glance toward the INHERENT CLASSISM and PRIVILEGE of this magazine. I will NAME DROP in an aimless and MEANDERING way and try to sound like I am ONE OF YOU while still letting you know that I'm NOT. I will attempt to make EVERYONE feel slightly more at ease with my FADING RELEVANCE while reiterating that I AM CONDE NASTY. hear me wheeze." : I AM MANATEE. Hear me swim quietly. Hear me not bothering anybody, ever. I am not sea-cow; I am not mermaid. I do not emulate the thrashing look-at-me frenzy of the great white or hammerhead sharks. I do not aspire to BEING ALL UP IN EVERYONE'S BUSINESS with eight tentacles or a nose that lights up. No. Of my friend Charles and my other friend Tallulah, both manatees—both manatees—I sing. (Have you felt the smooth, soft touch of salty Caribbean water flowing around you? Have you considered the REBELLION, the nonconformity, inherent in thick, wrinkled skin? Have you grown any coarse whiskers lately?) Reader, if you're an herbivorous aquatic mammal, being a manatee in 2010 offers more EDIBLE OPTIONS than it has in eons. Algae comes in green and blue-green. The ocean floor is giving us ever-popular-but-still-delicious SEAWEED for lunch or dinner. Mangrove leaves with other mangrove leaves are totally back. Can I get a "rrrruhhhhhnnrrr" up in here? • ! I AM BROKE. Watch me type. Watch me format reports in a cubicle. I am broke; I am not ludicrously wealthy. I do not emulate the prohibitively-expensive fashion stylings of Anna Wintour or Tyra Banks. I do not aspire to BLOW EVERYTHING ON LOOKING PERFECT, with a precision-cut bob and catsuits. No. Of Alexander McQueen for Target and and Vera Wang for Kohls — and Norma Kamali for Walmart — I sing. (Have you felt the smart, hard pinch of the credit crunch? Have you considered the REBELLION of something so last season? Have you worn something from the back of your closet lately?) Reader, if you're not completely brainwashed, fashion for fall 2010 offers more AFFORDABLE OPTIONS than it has in eons. Skirts are available at JC Penney. Designers are COLLABORATING WITH MASS RETAILERS for work or school. Your old stuff-with-old-stuff is totally back. Can we get an "Amen" up in here? ! I am woman, I am busting my ass to make a living though my wages are considerably less than my male counterparts. Sometimes I dream about feeling the tug of fine leather gloves or wearing a dress made with crinoline when I'm wearing a uniform and sneakers, rushing to catch the train to work. I could buy Vogue and covet the items on the pages while the recession has it's way with my paycheck and my life, instead I'll buy lunch. I won't ask if I can get an "Amen up in here" cause it's obnoxious. !!! I AM DRUNK And possibly high, too. Hear me say things that sound MILDLY REBELLIOUS but actually mean NOTHING NEW. I am someone who works at Vogue, not a real person. I do not attempt to get DOWN TO EARTH, because I would get FIRED. (Have you seen the prices on the things we try to sell to you? Really, what the hell.) Reader, if you have enough money, we will continue to sell more of the same OVERPRICED STUFF to you with renewed CATCH PHRASES and RANDOM CAPITALIZATION to make them sound SHINY and NEW. Can I get some pizzas up here now? • Last, but not least: Special Mention JPeg Of The Day: ! Please don't forget! Comments appear here when they are nominated. If you see a great, funny, insightful, eloquent (or awful) comment, nominate it! Email the comment and the timestamp link to the left of the comment to Hortense at . Meetups? Use the tag page! [Image via ]Kate Middleton's wedding dress may meet its adoring public at some point in the future. Although the palace would give no indication where or when The Dress — which was worked on by lacemakers who washed their hands every half an hour, to keep their work pristine white — might be exhibited, but did say that HRH was considering "a number of options to give members of the public the opportunity to see close up the skilled British craftsmanship that went into the making of her wedding dress." [] Meanwhile, every knock off artist and his brother is working to crank out copies of Middleton's McQueen. (Some of the "inspired" versions are pictured above.) One couple in China has already gotten married in get-ups that were kind of Kate-and-Wills drag. [] Blind item! "Which hot fashion designer — perhaps upset that he didn't get the call to design that dress — was spotted stumbling out of the Boom Boom Room, yelling, 'Kate Middleton is a vanilla whore!' on the eve of the royal wedding while his equally inebriated posse cackled?" [] Here's one of Kate Moss's new ads for Dior Addict lipstick. David Sims shot them. [] Kristen McMenamy is basically the coolest person ever, the end. [] Here are 16 of Anna Wintour's old Met Ball outfits. []In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.Azealia Banks' cover of Dazed & Confused has dropped. As you can see, it features a shot of the rapper with an inflated pink condom between her lips, held like a cigar. (The cover line is "Azealia Banks Blows Up.") The combination of prophylactic and oral fixation has been enough to get the magazine banned in seven countries so far, according to the editors. Because God forbid anyone should see a picture of a condom. We expect the issue will be in an opaque poly-bag on most U.S. newsstands, too, so get your fill of the image online. The cover photo was shot by Sharif Hamza, who shot that marvelously subversive Vogue Paris kiddie fashion last year. [] Cacique, the Lane Bryant lingerie brand, (right) a distinctive (left) by the Dutch designer . Dekkers isn't exactly a household name, but she's also far from an unknown: her wares have been worn by the likes of Lady Gaga and Victoria Beckham, and the bra in question was recently featured on The Today Show. [] Here's a picture of Lara Stone that is intended to make you want to buy Calvin Klein's new push-up bras. [] Obviously this would be the video for Lady Gaga's groundbreaking new black perfume, Fame. [] H&M has commissioned nine 10ft statues of David Beckham in honor of the soccer player's second underwear collection for the retailer. The statues will be displayed in stores worldwide. [] H&M's same-store sales rose only 2% year-on-year during the month of July. [] German Elle made an unusual decision when selecting a September cover: the magazine reprinted a four-year-old Tiffany's ad campaign featuring Sasha Pivovarova. The Fashion Spot immediately noticed, because nothing gets by those people. [, ] There's a new Tumblr called Models Who Look Like They Just Farted. Coco Rocha, ever on top of all things Tumblr, has already submitted a photo of herself. [] If you pay $1,695 for Christian Louboutin's embroidered "geek" pumps, it's fairly safe to say you are not a geek. [] Here's Condoleezza Rice modeling for the N.F.L.'s relaunched collection of branded women's apparel. [] Someone at Vogue made Anna Wintour a Pinterest. []In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.Modeling agency Ford did a promotional shoot featuring all of its black models — including women from all of its various divisions, straight- and plus-size — and some behind-the-scenes snapshots have leaked. (The photos are obviously not top quality, but we've reached out to Ford and hope to publish the final shots.) Jean Paul Gaultier favorite and Levi's face and Sports Illustrated star Damaris Lewis are among those featured. Highlighting models by race might seem like a weird thing to do, but models are judged on innate physical characteristics all the time (that's kind of the point of the modeling industry), and given plenty of designers still apparently think it's okay to show their collections on , we're on board with almost anything that draws attention to the beauty of models of color. Ford previously did a promotional shoot highlighting the blondes on its plus-size board. [] Someone uploaded a video of Marc Jacobs president Robert Duffy undressing to his underwear to the official brand YouTube account. The clip, which apparently featured a body double, was swiftly removed. Duffy (and the company) are being sued by a former executive who that Duffy fostered a hostile, sexually-charged work environment by watching porn on company time and making employees pole-dance for him. Duffy and Marc Jacobs International are fighting the lawsuit, and have the ex-employee of perpetrating a $20 million fraud against the company. Previously, Duffy TwitPic'd photos of a naked man at the brand's employees-only fashion week party. He then removed the shots. [, ] Marc Jacobs International has yet to comment on the video. [] Here's more of Helena Bonham Carter pulling faces in the fall Marc Jacobs campaign. [] Sarah Jessica Parker is on the new cover of American Vogue. This is the actress's sixth Vogue cover, and her second "Age Issue" cover. [] Women's Wear Daily says Sarah Jessica Parker is no longer working for Halston Heritage: "the actress and fashion brand are working on terminating the agreement, according to sources." [] Yeah, super-top-secret "sources" like, uh, Vogue magazine, which broke that news with a throwaway line in its profile of Parker. Wrote reporter Eve MacSweeney, "When Sex and the City, to her own surprise, made her a fashion star, she launched her own design label and perfumes, as well as signing on to run the Halston Heritage label, a relationship that recently came to an end." Obviously, Vogue didn't ask for details; that might be unseemly. Parker was the president and creative director of Halston Heritage, a sub-brand which focussed on reissuing lightly tweaked versions of archival Halston pieces at slightly-less-than-outrageous prices. Parker, a good soldier, wore plenty of Halston Heritage while promoting SATC2. [] Lara Stone is on the cover of Vogue Paris. It is her sixth cover of the magazine, and her second this year alone. [] Freida Pinto is on the cover of the new Interview. Interestingly, this issue features Maria Shriver interviewing Gloria Steinem. [] Rosie Huntington-Whiteley very nakedly stars in the campaign for Burberry's latest perfume, Body. [] Alice Temperley designed this scarf for Twinings. It tells the story of Earl Gray. This is to fire up your kettle. [] We kind of wish we hadn't seen this new six-piece suit collection from Rag & Bone because now we want every item. [] Alexander Wang hired these trucks which, for the next three nights, will project a video of Raquel Zimmerman in a "Blair Witch-type setting" onto the sides of buildings around Manhattan. [] All the kolors in the new Kardashian/OPI nail polish kollection are kalled things like "Kim-pletely in Love," and "Kourt is Red-dy for a Pedi." [] Some parents will pay 13 cents more per diaper so their babies can shit in trompe l'oeil denim. [] Here is a dress with Steve Buscemi's face on it. It costs $100. []In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.In Manhattan, students at Stuyvesant High School — a prestigious public school — protested a new dress code by going to class in clothing the school would ban, including spaghetti-strap tank tops and short shorts. The rules have been prompting waves of objections by students, particularly now that summerlike weather has arrived and, many noted, the school's air-conditioning has proved to be less than reliable. Even before the protest on Wednesday, students had been listing their grievances in online forums and in The Spectator, the student newspaper, with many girls arguing that the rules, and the enforcement of them, were disproportionately aimed at them. They also complained about one solution that administrators had developed for offenders: making them wear oversize gray T-shirts. "We're going to overpower the gray T-shirts," said Madeline Rivera, 18, a senior, before walking into the school. "We're outnumbering them now." She said the rules seemed arbitrary, that staff members seemed to go after certain "body shapes," singling out girls whose bodies are "more curvy." They called the protest "Slutty Wednesday," ironically. The Times reports that some students carried "their own illustrated version of the dress code, complete with a red 'X' to reflect their opinion of the rules." So that's what those red X's we've been seeing everywhere mean! Signs make so much sense now. [] Karl Lagerfeld is collaborating on a holiday collection of makeup for Shu Uemura. The Chanel designer has long used the company's products to color in his fashion sketches. Graphic designers, tell us what the fuck is up with that horrendous logo in the comments. [] Today in Celebrities Getting Paid Money For Things: Alexander Skarsgard is now a face of Calvin Klein. [] And Jessica Chastain has been named the face of a new Yves Saint Laurent perfume called Manifesto. [] Liu Wen and Monika "Jac" Jagaciak share the July cover of Chinese Vogue. It is, somewhat astonishingly given the heights her career has attained in the five years since she began working internationally at age 13, Jagaciak's first Vogue cover. [] Harvey Nichols — the department store that brought you those walk-of-shame-themed TV ads — imagines you might pee your designer pants with excitement over its sale. [] Do you want to peruse the catalog for the Christie's auction of Daphne Guinness's clothes? Of course you do. So many gorgeous dresses, and so many size 37 shoes. []In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.Hailey Clauson's lawsuit against Urban Outfitters for allegedly printing her image on t-shirts without authorization will proceed. Clauson's lawsuit against photographer Jason Lee Parry was dismissed on procedural grounds, but where Urban Outfitters is concerned the judge found that there is a case to answer for the unauthorized use of her image. Clauson and her parents the retailer for $28 million after taken for an obscure German fashion magazine called Qvest somehow came to adorn t-shirts that were sold at Urban Outfitters stores and online. Clauson turned 15 the month the highly sexualized photos were taken. Clauson, who celebrated her 17th birthday a few days ago, was most recently seen in the pages of Pop, being [NSFW]. [] A second employee has added her name to the $50 million lawsuit filed against Alexander Wang for alleged labor violations. Garment worker Flor Duarte alleges that she was forced to work 90-hour weeks in Wang's studio without required breaks or overtime pay, and that when she complained of the illegal treatment and filed a worker's compensation claim, she was fired in retaliation. Wenyu Lu, another garment worker, made similar allegations last week. [] J. Lo is on the cover of Vogue's annual "Shape" issue. The cover reminds us just a little of Rihanna's "Shape" issue cover from last year — ocean in the background, bright red in the foreground. [] Heidi Klum is on the other, non-Jessica Simpson, cover of Elle this month. She tells the magazine that she doesn't see the point in talking to the press about her separation from Seal. "People don't need to know who did what. I don't want to talk positively or negatively about the ups and downs that we had. Every couple goes through things. Unfortunately, we're in the public, so the highs are out there. But I don't think it's necessary — especially for our children — to have the lows being printed in magazines and talked about." [] Cameron Diaz's first Tag Heuer ad is out. []What is it about men and hair? Women are always the ones said to be washing, dying, fixing, cutting and obsessing over their tresses, but some guys can be very attached to their locks — dating back to Samson. And why is it that some guys will, completely unapologetically, rock the worst hair ever seen by human eyes? And act proud of it? Radar has a of fashion-industry men with "fancy locks," including designer Alexander Wang and Vogue editor Hamish Bowles. But they've got nothing on the dudes rounded up on WOW Report (from a NSFW blog called ) in their post, . See men with contemptible coifs of yesteryear — as well as hideous hair of today — after the jump. 1. The Feather Duster Is it a mullet? Is it (shudder) a shag? Wait til you see this angle: Didn't have this same 'do on Who's The Boss? Thanks to Fey Friends, you can see this guy . NSFW, obviously. 2. The Fabio There's not enough Pantene Pro-V in the world to fix those split ends. Only a pair of scissors can cure what ails this gentleman. (You can see this guy too. NSFW.) 3. The Dorothy Hamill Fey Friends calls this one the Kate Jackson, but it's clearly a Dorothy. This shaggy look is actually making a comeback, on and that one on Bravo's Million Dollar Listing. Be afraid. 4. The Soul Glo A Jheri curl on steroids! The from Coming To America was so solidly based in reality it almost wasn't funny. 5. The Lace-Front Man-Weave John Travolta . So does . Lord only knows what is up with these days. Oh! Here's a close up of Revolta: 6. The Long-Ass Combover Joe Biden's hair-plug and comb-over is a desperate attempt for you to listen to his words and not look at his scalp. Why are some guys so afraid of going bald? It doesn't sap your strength! Ask James Carville. 7. The Silver Scrub Brush Jay Manuel is the only one who knows what the hell this is all about. 8. The Electric Shock Treatment Therapy This is the dude, yes, dude from Tokio Hotel. I hate to sound like my mom but: Kids today are crazy. Want to nominate a dude with wretched hair? Feel free to post pix in the comments! [Radar] [WOW Report] [Fey Friends] (NSFW) [Celebrity images via .]Last night's Met Ball — aka the Oscars of the East Coast, aka Anna Wintour's baby, aka the fanciest red carpet in all of New York — brought out the models, the editors, and the actors to celebrate the opening of the Metropolitan Museum of Art's new Alexander McQueen show.A practically makeup-less Kim Kardashian (whose appearance, as always, serves as a reminder to us all that she's actually really pretty underneath all that slap) is on the new cover of Marie Claire. The cover promises, "KIM KARDASHIAN REVEALS WHAT WENT ON IN HER CRAZY MARRIAGE," which, enviable restraint in not going with "KRAZY," and — catch that past tense? The cover line, with that hint of divorce, obviously implies the cover story was written after the papers had been filed — but the end of the great love story that was Kris and Kim was only announced last week, when the magazine was probably already closing. Fashion Spot commenters and seem to be assuming that this means Kim planned her divorce and talked about it with the magazine months ago, when she must have been interviewed and photographed, knowing that the issue would drop just as the split became public. But the prospect of Marie Claire sitting on a scoop like that for months strikes us as highly unlikely. Occam's razor suggests a more prosaic explanation may be the correct one: without changing one word of the story or re-interviewing Kim, the ladymag re-wrote its cover headline at the close to imply that it had some kind of recent, inside information. A ladymag with a misleading cover line? Imagine! [] Tavi Gevinson and Hailee Steinfeld went to Disneyland together yesterday. [] Brooks Brothers dressed Kermit the Frog for the upcoming Muppets movie. [] Here is a video of Chloë Sevigny, dressed as Terry Richardson, kissing Terry Richardson on a Terry Richardson shoot. The opening for his [link NSFW], Mom & Dad, is tonight, folks. [] Dakota and Elle Fanning share the December cover of W. [] Katie Holmes is in the new campaign for jeweler H. Stern. [] Graffiti artist Kidult vandalized a Paris Céline store with pink paint reading "SK8" — a reference to the high-end label's pink graffiti and skateboard-themed fall campaign. Kidult makes a habit of tagging luxury stores: in the past, he's Hermès, Kenzo, Agnès b, Yves Saint Laurent, and Colette. [] Karl Lagerfeld has four iPhones. Each has his picture on it. That is all. []Anyone who's ever been dragged to a mall to buy a backpack's worth of notebooks and a new pair of regulation shoes has surely wondered if it wouldn't be possible to, you know, cram even more harried, bickering parent-teen pairs into a confined, fluorescent-lit space redolent with stale movie popcorn and sadness. What if there were some way to make back-to-school shopping even busier? Even bigger? Even more crowded? Well, Teen Vogue is inventing a new fashion holiday, to sit in the pantheon of shopping holidays alongside Black Friday and Cyber Monday and Boxing Day (Commonwealth, represent!): Back-to-School Saturday (nothing says "fun" like "school" and "Saturday" in the same sentence!). The magazine has decided the inaugural event will take place this year on August 11. Think Fashion's Night Out for the middle and high school set. Naturally, there will be branded partnerships. The Times reports that stores including Aéropostale, American Eagle Outfitters, Express, Guess, H&M, Maybelline New York, Pacific Sunwear of California, Quiksilver, Staples and Vans will participate. Cover Girl, Olay, Pantene and Tampax — all owned by Proctor & Gamble — are also involved. Deborah Marquardt, vice president for media and integrated marketing at Maybelline New York, part of the L'Oréal USA division of L'Oréal, said that for Teen Vogue's target generation, "shopping is like a sport." Back-to-School Saturday represents an "opportunity to get out in front of this key audience," she added, in a relevant way that "gives shape and focus to something that's already existed, elevating it, event-izing it and celebrating it." "If it doesn't provide anything of value," Ms. Marquardt said, consumers will not respond. "But they're going to get samples, and they're going to get offers, and there'll be a fashion show at the Grove," she added, referring to a mall in Los Angeles, "where 10-to-15,000 are expected." Let August 11 heretofore be known as the day to avoid all public places where commerce takes place. [] More fall campaigns are rolling out: Burberry tapped up-and-coming British actress Gabriella Wilde and musician Roo Panes to be its latest faces. [] Marc Jacobs' fall campaign stars models Marie Piovesan and Marte Mei van Haaster. And some large, furry hats. [] Shalom Harlow talks about her career in this behind-the-scenes clip from the Alexander Wang fall show, which she walked. Harlow grew up in Canada with "hippie" missionary parents. She was scouted at a Cure concert. "I had no connection to fashion whatsoever. I had never even seen a fashion magazine. I grew up without a television," she says. "I had no reference point for anything and I was suddenly in Paris on catwalks for designers that I could barely even pronounce their names. We would all watch on the monitor while so-and-so was out there doing her thing. And we were all screaming and clapping. And it was about what you did at the end of the runway. And then sometimes it would be about one-upping each other." [] Isabeli Fontana wears double denim on the cover of Vogue Bresil. [] Adam Sandler announced that Victoria's Secret Angel Erin Heatherton scored her first film role, on Sandler's Grown Ups 2, which is currently in production. Judging from the monitor image Sandler Tweeted, Heatherton plays a cheerleader at a carwash. "Had a blast, if you ever need a sponge bath, you know who to call," replied Heatherton. [@] Here are sketches of some of Arianne Phillips' and Jean Paul Gaultier's costume designs for Madonna's upcoming tour. [] Roberto Cavalli's Twitter is the gift that keeps on giving. [@] Skate Moss is no longer just a punny, dangerous-looking from DSquared2: it's a punny, copyright-lighthearted conceptual skate brand. Take a picture of Kate Moss, Photoshop it on a skate deck, and you have a Skate Moss board. [] Lucky has a nice round-up of old photos of big-name designers. []Gisele BündchenThere's a strong case for calling Gisele the face of the decade. Although she technically rose to fame at the very end of the 1990s — she was Vogue/VH1 Model of the Year for 1999, and nabbed the November 1999, December 1999, and January 2000 covers of American Vogue in a rare hat-trick — Gisele has continued to dominate the entire fashion spectrum. Claudia Schiffer called her the only true modern supermodel. Gisele is a category-killer, pulling off high-fashion editorial work, commercial gigs, Victoria's Secret, and campaigns for Dior and Versace, with equal aplomb. (She is also one of the only contemporary models to have gained any kind of tabloid notoriety, which celebrity ironically makes her a more likely cover choice for fashion magazines, now that they don't put mere models on their covers.) Through every change in style, Gisele has remained on top. She goes by one name. She is . She has a line of sandals in her native Brazil. Her work ethic is highly praised, and an economist even to mathematically prove that companies that hire her make money. It outperformed the Dow! Other models should probably just give up now.The spring Christian Dior collection walked in Paris earlier today. Dior still has not replaced fired creative director John Galliano, who after being arrested for at a couple in a Paris café six months ago, so studio head Bill Gaytten took the bow at the show's conclusion. Karolina Kurkova opened, wearing a houndstooth '50s-style blazer and a cream organza skirt. Karlie Kloss, wearing a black lace dress with a sheer pink skirt, closed — meaning the last thing the fashion press saw was her nearly-naked butt sashaying back down the runway. (And a million bad bloggers hit publish on totes original "cheeky" puns...) The collection was restrained (contrary to the Gaytten oversaw): neat, even prim, clothes that owe a big debt to vintage styles and the house's own archives. Kimono sleeves, full skirts, boat necks. A sort of Dior greatest-hits album — with all the nostalgia, familiarity, and the cashing-in that term implies. It was, dare we say it, a tad boring. Orlando Bloom Leighton Meester are among the celebrities who showed. When asked about Galliano's replacement, C.E.O. Sidney Toledano reportedly told the press, "Show some patience!" [] "Marc Jacobs is still seen as the frontrunner for the job, though talks have been tough and recently at a standstill, sources said." And the Galliano does not appear to have tarnished the Dior brand: Toledano reports that the fall collection, which of course Galliano mostly designed, has been selling very well. [] Style.com's Meenal Mistry reports that Paris cabbies maintain a passing familiarity with the goings-on at Dior. [@] Also without a creative director this season is Ungaro, which cut ties with Giles Deacon just last month. (Deacon's fall collection is shown at right.) Ungaro has seen a revolving door of creative directors since Emanuel Ungaro retired in 2005. Literally everyone has had a try at designing Ungaro, Lindsay Lohan. The house thinks it can get by on "heritage" styles for this season, and obviously there's a design team in place, but going leaderless is a risky move in fashion. The press hates it, for one thing, because the press is very invested in the notion of the designer-as-individual-genius: the Great Man theory of Fashion, if you will. And customers, too, are infected by this idea; part of what you're paying for when you buy a $3,000 dress is the knowledge that it was touched by a highly trained set of human hands working from a unique aesthetic vision. Right now, you can't buy Ungaro dresses (or Ungaro anything else) at any U.S. department store. They've all dropped the line. [] Olivier Rousteing's first collection for Balmain has been warmly greeted by critics. Suzy Menkes calls it "a hit." Christina Binkley says, "Toreador jackets, tight leather pants and beaded tunics were pure ‘Balmain,' which is to say, sexy, wildly embellished with metallic details, and impossibly expensive." Which is to say Rousteing finally made Balmain look as expensive as it is overpriced, we suppose. [, WSJ] A Fashionista writer went to the Bronx for a $10 manicure with nail art: "Surprisingly, the tiger stripes take the least amount of time. I blink and the tech's pulling out what I hope is topcoat from a bottle labeled 'chicken essence.' Whatever — I got exactly what I was envisioning. Lisa Frank's tiger would be so jealous." Chicken essence! [] This is what Kanye West's show invitation looks like. [] And this is what Kanye West looks like posing for a photo with a London fabric wholesaler and his son. The rapper stopped in to buy some zippers and fabric, and stayed for a cup of tea. [] Comme des Garçons' new perfume bottle is made from recycled glass, made to appear as though it were melting. [] We do not know what this hilarious picture of Fergie posing with the two most bored-looking Russian male models in the world has to do with the launch of her new perfume, but we are glad that it exists. The photo, we mean. The perfume probably sucks. [] The model Danielle Zinaich — whom we did not realize was 36 — wears Alexander Wang and army surplus shirts. [] For an editorial in Schön magazine, Rick "Zombie Boy" Genest was Photoshopped and made up to appear as though he had not in fact tattooed a trompe l'oeil skull onto his face. ( are some photos of Zombie Boy pre-tattoos.) []In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.The Hemline Index — the notion that hemlines rise during economic upswings, and head towards the floor in downturns — is still kicking around. For no good reason, frankly, as it's an unreliable indicator of anything other than fashion trends. And yet it persists, year after year, season after season. What is it about our brains that cling to this thing? Business Insider seems to have proved that, on average, the New York designers showed shorter skirts and dresses for fall 2012, compared with those they showed for fall 2011. It did this by looking at photos of every runway look presented by 25 top women's wear brands, including Marc Jacobs, Jason Wu, J. Crew, and Michael Kors: The BI Hemline Index is calculated by measuring hem length as a percentage of the length from floor to waistline. The shorter the hemline, the higher the index. Overall, average hemlines in 2012 registered a 44.38 on the index, up from 35.04 for the Fall/Winter 2011 collections. Complete looks from each designer were measured, however skirts and dresses were the only data points fed into the data set. Measurements were taken from images provided post-show. Okay. Hems on average got shorter this season. Good job! Someone's eyes work. But what Business Insider has not proved is that hemlines have any relationship whatsoever with the overall economy. That assertion — that the so-called hemline index is actually, you know, real, or as Business Insider put it in its headline, "Skirts Are Getting Shorter And That's Bullish For The Economy" — is a belief that goes unexamined in the piece. There are a number of problems with the "hemline index." From the perspective of fashion, it represents a misunderstanding of the industry on several levels. The first and most obvious problem is that designers simply do not "set" hemlines. The time when American women were simply waiting for Big Fashion to tell them "how high" — if that time ever really existed — has not been a reality for more than a generation. Fashion is not a unified creative force; fashion critics haven't been dispatched to the shows to find "the" hemline since the early 1970s, and fashion magazine editors do not sit around in their offices conspiring to make the American public Think Pink (or to Think Miniskirts). In any given season, different designers will present different ideas of what they think is modern and original (or, more cynically, of what they and their respective subscription trend-forecasting services believe will be commercially desirable in six months' time). The runway is a hopper into which many incipient trends are fed. Hems on the catwalk will be low, high, midi, mini, maxi, calf, handkerchief, mullet — you name it, someone will show it. And what women will actually choose to wear (perhaps in a watered-down H&M or Target interpretation, or in the form of a similarish thrift-store or closet find) when the calendar season rolls around, these days, betrays even more variation. For the hemline index to be real, or even possible, there would have to be A Hemline. And there just isn't. That much is evident even in the photographs Business Insider chose to illustrate its story. And it's evident in the fact that a sizable minority of the designers it chose to focus on (including highly influential names like Alexander Wang, Donna Karan, and Carolina Herrera) actually showed skirts and dresses that were on average longer than those they showed last year. Fashion design just isn't about handing down a "new" skirt length from on high (besides, I hear a lot of women wear pants these days, anyway). But even in the days when fashion was a smaller, more single-minded kind of industry, and when you could tell last season's skirt from this season's by its length and silhouette, hemlines had no predictive value to the wider economy. The hemline index has been extensively , and debunked. Most recently and perhaps most comprehensively, Marjolein van Baardwijk and Philip Hans Franses of the Erasmus School of Economics of the lengths of skirts that appeared in the French fashion magazine L'Officiel every month from 1921-2009. They found that skirt lengths "have no predictive ability for the state of the economy." (Yes, that had to be pointed out. Despite the fact that believing shorter skirts foretell better economic conditions is, if you think about it for about a half a second, the rough economic equivalent of believing those Iranian clerics who that women's skimpy clothing causes earthquakes.) They did find a correlation between poor overall economic performance and the editors of L'Officiel (eventually) selecting longer skirts for their fashion stories, but the correlation was weak — and there was a lag of 3-4 years on average between the recession and the appearance of the longer skirts, suggesting any association could have been random. It's also not clear why people believe that longer skirts should sync with a slow economy. Fabric is expensive, after all. The persistently alleged correlation between women's skirts and macroeconomic performance is not the only dubious fashion-related indicator spawned by the world of pop-econ. There's also the "lipstick index" (women buy more lipstick in a recession; false), the "manicure index" (women either get more salon manicures during a recession or they buy more drugstore nail polish to do it themselves — the sages can't seem to decide which it is; that alone should tell you this one is not true), and the "heel height index" (women buy higher heels in a recession, because platform shoes were invented during the Great Depression; they don't, and they weren't). As Autumn Whitefield-Madrano last year, these economic indices have one other thing in common, besides their unreliability: they focus on women's consumption. "The repeated 'whoda thunkit?!' tone," of these news stories, wrote Whitefield-Madrano, "began to feel belittling, like, Aw, so cute, she's got a coincident countercyclic economic indicator in her Hello Kitty makeup bag!" Things like the lipstick index are appealing for those of us who aren't particularly schooled in economics. It's handy to have the complexity of the economy handed to us in a digestible form: the burger index! the underwear index! It makes us feel like our little habits might add up to something bigger. I particularly wanted my lipstick-my silly, frivolous little lipstick-to mean something "real." What I hadn't seen was that the continued emphasis on the lipstick index — or the manicure index, or the hemline theory — actually made women's purchasing power seem more trivial, not less. The more we examine what women buy, the more we're keeping them in their place. The lipstick index, the hemline index — and more importantly, our continued ability to generate and consume "news" stories, blog posts, and TV segments that present these and the other aforementioned (thoroughly) debunked ideas as fact — have always said more about certain cultural ideas we have about women and shopping than they have about the economy. As Gaby Hinsliff in the New Statesman, the common view of women as economic consumers (shoppers) instead of economic producers (workers) can be pernicious. Not least because these stories displace and obscure fuller, more accurate assessments of women's economic impact: The dangerous thing about this idea is that it can obscure women's role in creating rather than frittering wealth. What you don't hear so often is how western economic growth has been boosted by the shift of women, and especially mothers, into work since the 1970s. By 2009, the American economy was up to 25 per cent bigger than it would have been had millions more women not chosen over the previous four decades to work, according to figures cited by the management consultants McKinsey. That kind of growth isn't just down to women having more money to buy shoes. The other way in which the hemline index represents a misunderstanding of fashion is simple: in seeking to look for an "unexpected" economic indicator (never mind that the hemline index is an old saw that dates back to the 1920s — the people who write about it as fact still seem to think they're laying on us some grade-A, mind-blowing, gee-whiz journalism) in fashion, these reporters are missing the fact that fashion itself is an economic indicator. Fashion, not even counting retail, is one of New York City's largest industries — fashion week alone, in just 14 days of the year, is to generate $865 million in economic activity in New York City. (That's nearly $100 million more than in 2007: how's that for an economic indicator?) The industry as a whole is worth billions to the national economy. There is simply no need to assign basis points to mini-skirts and go hunting for secret messages about the economy in the hemlines in order to give fashion — that domain of women, gay men, and the chiffon they love — some economic weight. Fashion as an industry has an economic impact all of its own. It could, however, benefit from the attentions of some diligent financial reporters (just consider for a second the differences between how fashion is reported on versus how New York's other great industry, finance, is covered). Perhaps Business Insider would like to volunteer?It's Met Ball day! That means tonight's the night all the top models, designers, celebrities, and assorted rich people in New York head to the Upper East Side to listen to Azealia Banks and drink prosecco in the Temple of Dendur. The event has raises millions for the museum every year, and fêtes the annual Costume Institute show — "Schiaparelli and Prada: Impossible Conversations" opens Thursday, friends. Only the guest of honor and the only surviving member of this year's headlining duo may not be able to attend. Miuccia Prada reportedly fell off her "high-rise platform shoes" this weekend; when journalist Suzy Menkes met her at her hotel for an interview, Prada was "resting" and unsure if she would be able to make it to the ball. . [] Not entirely coincidentally, the house of Schiaparelli — which closed its doors in 1954 — is being prepared for a relaunch. Tod's owner Diego Della Valle acquired the Schiaparelli name and archives in 2006. He has hired model Farida Khelfa to serve as a brand ambassador (kind of like he hired Inès de la Fressange to lend a little glamour to the relaunch of Roger Vivier shoes in 2002); Khelfa will be wearing vintage Schiaparelli at the ball tonight. The company is still searching for a creative director, and says the first new Schiaparelli goods will hit stores next February. [] Sarah Burton of Alexander McQueen says, "I often look to Schiaparelli. I think she was an incredibly inspiring designer. We've had her on our research boards many times." [] Some of the pieces for this year's show were loaned to the Met by a 70-something rich lady in Michigan who has spent her life collecting rare, old couture. And, through some feat of (enviable?) self-repression, never wearing any of it. [] Here's a list of which designers are taking which models and celebrities. Azealia Banks is being dressed by Alexander Wang, and Proenza Schouler is taking Isabel Lucas. Poor Joan Smalls has to wear Balmain. [] "Sources" say that no less an authority than Anna Wintour has asked all of the Vogue editors to wear pink to the ball tonight. Shocking pink was Schiaparelli's favorite color. Reports Women's Wear Daily: "Wintour is said to have asked the magazine's editors to take pictures of themselves in their dresses, with a few different hairstyle options, and send them to the Vogue editor in chief." [] Coco Rocha is wearing a vintage yellow and hot-pink Givenchy couture jumpsuit that once belonged to Elizabeth Taylor. The model bought it at the auction of the late actor's things last December for $3250. It's not quite pristine, says Rocha. "If you look carefully, you can see the suit has this very faint red wine stain on it. After I had it cleaned I took it to show the editors at Vogue and we could still see the stain. We all agreed that since it was Liz Taylor's wine stain, it's OK to wear as is." [] As for the small matter of the actual show? Apparently, it involves a film directed by potential imminent Gatsby-ruiner Baz Luhrmann, in which the Australian actress Judy Davis — playing Schiaparelli — has a conversation with Prada. [] Meanwhile in London, the Victoria & Albert Museum is readying for opening an exhibition called "Ballgowns." These are some of the gowns featured. [] Natalia Vodianova designed a girl's dress with the label Caramel Baby and Child and had her six-year-old daughter Neva model it. Half the proceeds go to support Vodianova's charity, the Naked Heart Foundation. [] In other mother-daughter news, Nicole Kidman and her daughter Faith Margaret are on the cover of Australian Harper's Bazaar. Only the kid is looking away from the camera. [] Charlotte Gainsbourg is le nouveau sexy, according to Elle France. [] Want to participate in the "Navajo" "trend"? Don't want to give money to Forever 21 or Urban Outfitters? The Native American fashion blog Beyond Buckskin has just launched an online boutique showcasing the work of 11 Native American clothing, jewelry, and leather goods designers. T-shirts start at $30, and right now silk scarves . [] Kanye West hates everything you own. Look at your life. Look at your choices. []In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.The general consensus about 's half-assed show? Sad. Very, very sad. Says , "Even with all the cutbacks and trimming down this week, it was hard to find a sorrier spectacle than...the Project Runway show." As every sentient being knows, Project Runway 6 has been bedeviled by lawsuits between the Weinstein Company and NBC Universal and as a result, went into production without a home. Just in case it does get filmed, the show went ahead and had a traditional Fashion Week finale runway show. Except that this time, since no one has, you know, seen the show or met the contestants, it was hard to build up much excitement. The producers made the designers keep a low profile in case of leaks, so they didn't get to so much as introduce their collections: a moment that's probably a career highlight for a lot of the show's contestants. Said , according to New York, "Oh, it's horrible, it's the worst thing in the world. Because this is the end and it isn't as fun and exciting. I mean, who even knows if their families are here! And that's tough, because we got to have our friends and families." And the collections? Apparently without any personalities or drama or suspense, it just looked like a bunch of somewhat lackluster fashions in the midst of real designers' shows (although attending celebs were encouraging about aspects), and elicited what describes as "muted enthusiasm from the crowd. " New York described the collections thusly: The parade of clothes included two rocker-type collections heavy on black and knitwear, and one collection of the kind of jewel-tone, girlie, draped-silk charmeuse dresses young starlets wear to Target store openings. The final rocker-wear designer showed shades of Alexander Wang with lots of black mixed with intricate knits; the designer also seemed on point with the season, presenting a lot of textured tight pants and leggings. , announced from the runway, "We are all in a bit of a limbo, and we hope that everything is sorted out very soon." Leanne and Jay, at least, were there. And Siriano, despite his sympathy for the faceless designers, saw a silver lining, according to WWD: now mediocre designers couldn't make it through on the basis of personality (cough, .) "Every year, there's always a weed or two that manages to make it through Project Runway." , back in lovable pedagogue mode, was typically encouraging, according to the Times: "We have a smashing, sensational season for you. We can't wait for you to see it." Neither can we, Tim. Neither can we. [New York] [WWD] [NY Times]In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.Both of the covers of the new W have leaked. The snapshot of Christina Aguilera's cover that was leaked leaves a lot to be desired, so perhaps it isn't a fair fight, but Beyoncé is clearly winning this one. Lynn Hirschberg's profile of Aguilera — "The pop diva comes clean about her fall from grace, and how she's singing her way back to the top" — sounds like it will make for interesting reading, however. But who are we kidding? We'll totally flip to "Donatella on a dirt bike, Lagerfeld in the tub" first. [, ] Beyoncé is also on the new cover of L'Uomo Vogue. [] The guy responsible for Rihanna's tour costumes explains himself: "I was thinking of a Fiorucci rave goddess. The bikini is an insane asylum...We fit it four times on Rihanna to make it fit in that incredible way that hugs her curves. Once the fittings were completed we gave it to Tom [Binns] to paint. When you see that thing in person it's the most incredible fucking thing." [] And in a random news item from 2006 that seems to have shaken loose of the space-time continuum and inserted itself into the news cycle of today, Tobey Maguire is the new face of Prada's men's line. [] Prada's IPO road show is meeting early success: Shares are already five times oversubscribed in Milan. The company hits New York and Boston later this week. Final share price will be determined Friday, and trading will begin on June 24. It sounds that the price will be at the higher end of the range offered, which could value the company at over $15 billion. [] The Italian apparel industry as a whole, according to the Italian Chamber of Fashion, expects its revenues to hit $93.2 billion in 2011. [] Devon Aoki and her fiancé, James Bailey, have welcomed their first child, a son. Bailey Tweeted throughout the labor, and after delivery snapped photos of the , four , and the couple's . The child, whom they haven't yet named, was born on the anniversary of the couple's engagement. Bailey Tweeted, "Not a bad anniversary present 'Aw Derrick, he did his first look!' ." [@] Karen Elson and Julia Stegner each scored a cover of the new Zoo. [] Jeanne Bice, the designer and QVC host behind the Quacker Factory clothing line, has died. She was 71. [] This "God Save McQueen" scarf costs $595. [] We're sure Lanvin's brand-new children's line is no cheaper, but damn is it cute. [] Alber Elbaz was thrown a surprise birthday party in New York. Paper's Kim Hastreiter — who Tweeted throughout the event — deejayed, and guests included Iris Apfel and Lynn Yaeger. [] Former Valentino C.E.O. Giancarlo Giammetti's New York apartment is now on the market for just $10.8 million — a savings of nearly $2 million from its original listing price. [] Jimmy Choo is launching a new "Icons" collection of fifteen reissued styles from its archive. ("Archive" meaning the fifteen years in which the company's been in operation.) There's a shoe from Sex and the City ("an early episode") and a shoe Tamara Mellon wore to get her OBE and a shoe that celebrities "love." These shoes will not be selling for their "archival" prices: they will retail for $850-$3,785. Ten per cent of the proceeds will go to charity. [] Dutch model Ananda Marchildon has won her lawsuit against her former agency, Elite. Marchildon, who won Holland's Next Top Model and a €75,000 contract with Elite, was dropped by the agency after only having earned €10,000 in two years of working, and sued for the remaining value of her contract. Elite will now have to pay her €65,000. Another winner of the show who says she experienced similar treatment is said to also be mulling a lawsuit to recoup her losses. Elite's counter-argument — that it dropped Marchildon for gaining 2cm on her hips over the course of the contract — and its lawyer's public that modeling "not for everybody" evidently weren't persuasive to the judge. Agencies tend to flout minimum guaranteed earnings provisions in modeling contracts — when such guarantees are offered, which is rarely — because the risk of a teenage girl from Siberia (or wherever) who hasn't been earning any money actually filing suit is pretty slim. [] Topshop sold a t-shirt that attributed the quote "Romeo, Romeo, wherefore art thou Romeo?" to "Shakespere." While this is an error, the question of how to spell Shakespeare's name has a long and interesting history. The spelling of Shakespeare as "Shakespeare" was only conventionalized long after the playwright's death; Early Modern English spelling was erratic, and during his lifetime our man from Stratford was referred to variously as "Shakespere," "Shakespeare," "Shakespear," "Shakspeare," "Shackspear," among many others. "Shakspere" is how the writer sometimes handwrote his name — which led to a vogue among certain Romantics to employ it as his more "authentic" name. But "Shakespeare" was how he often signed his name in printed text, and so after the mid-19th Century, it became standard. (Though G.K. Chesterton referred to him as "Shakespere" as late as 1908.) Incidentally, the inconsistency of the spelling has long been a plank in the de Vere authorship argument; apparently, Oxfordians take the variations not as evidence that written English was highly nonstandard in the 16th Century, but of some kind of a conspiracy. Either Topshop was dog-whistling Oxfordianism in the t-shirt department, or a (non-English-speaking?) supplier made a mistake. [] Here's the behind-the-scenes video for the new cover of Vogue Italia. The tag-line is "Haute Mess," and the models are Coco Rocha, Joan Smalls, Jessica Stam, Karen Elson, Abbey Lee Kershaw, Lindsey Wixson, Daphne Groeneveld, and Guinevere van Seenus. [] Ashley and Mary-Kate Olsen have twin covers of Elle UK. [] Alber Elbaz sang at the Lanvin after-party, to celebrate his 10th year in charge of the label's creative direction. "I rehearsed two times and I'm a terrible singer," he warns, before launching into "Que Sera, Sera." [] Kanye West's second fashion show was shorter than his first — he showed just 20 looks, to a front row that included Kim Kardashian and Azealia Banks. There were go-karts. And backless leather jackets. And sample shoes that looked entirely as precarious as Joan Smalls had hinted. And lots of "questionable fur looks," per the New York Times. And a leather outfit that came with a long, trailing — tail? Leash? Belt? "Harder, faster, stronger, maybe just a little bit better," was Eric Wilson's pitiless lede. West apparently cancelled a pre-arranged press preview while the Times was already in his showroom, waiting. "I don't know about this," he said. "I got treated unfairly by the press last time. Why would I want to do this?" So he kicked the reporters out. [] Did Kate Upton do her swimwear line with the same people behind JWOWW's? Serious question. []In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.Male model Tyson Beckford would like you to know who really deserves credit for the success of his model girlfriend, Shanina Shaik: himself. Seriously. It's all Tyson, baby: "When I found her she was a regular girl. I helped place her with the right people, get her teeth cleaned, her body toned up," he says, framing himself as the Henry Higgins of fashion. "Everything changed and now everyone wants a piece of her. I hear people say, 'You can do better than Tyson.' I'm like, 'Really? Really?! I created her!'" It's just as if he were on that catwalk himself, you guys. For the record, "when he found her," Shaik was a working model in her native Australia who was competing on a modeling reality show that Beckford was judging. She came second. Since moving to New York, Shaik has gone on to work for top commercial and fashion clients including Victoria's Secret, Jason Wu, and L'Wren Scott; she was one of New York fashion week's of color this season. But who are we kidding — that was practically all Tyson's doing! Few people know this, but Shanina Shaik doesn't even do her own castings. It's just Tyson in drag, walking back and forth, saying "G'day mate!" and "Put another prawwwrn on the barbie" on a loop. (Don't tell the casting directors.) All her photos: that's Tyson. Agency meetings? Tyson. Then Shanina sneaks in at the last second and just profits off all poor, put-upon Tyson's hard work. When's Tyson going to get the credit he deserves, hmm? What's a male model got to do around here to get a little recognition? All Tyson is trying to do is make the world a more beautiful place. Elsewhere in this interview, Beckford points out that his cameo in Zoolander required him to play himself ("one of the hardest things you can do"), says things like "As a supermodel, I go with the other supers round the world: Dubai one day, Paris the next," and admits that if he had to choose between racing cars and ever having sex again, he'd pick the cars "even though I've got a hot girlfriend. She'll understand." After this article, he may not have the choice. Although we're expecting an "I was misquoted" press release in T-23 minutes. [] J. Crew president and creative director Jenna Lyons and her former husband, artist Vincent Mazeau, have sold their Park Slope for a cool $4 million. [] Christian Dior shot its latest Lady Dior ad with Marion Cotillard at the Communist Party headquarters in Paris. Why? Because the Oscar Niemeyer-designed building has simply the chicest conference room ceiling, that's why. [] Only click this link if you want to see a lot of GIF previews of Steven Meisel's April cover story of Vogue Italia, "Prom Night." This prom apparently involves a lot of leather masks. []Urban Outfitters is denying that it Truche designer Stevie Koerner's state-with-a-heart-in-it necklace. The company, which is owned by prominent Republican donor Dick Hayne, points out that many designers have made jewelry that includes a heart and a representation of a geographical place, and that the combination of the two elements is essentially generic. (Which it probably is — no matter who came up with the design first, it is probably not copyrightable under U.S. law.) "We are not implying that Koerner stole her necklace idea from one of these other designers, we are simply stating the obvious — that the idea is not unique to Koerner and she can in no way claim to be its originator." Urban Outfitters, which has a long and well-documented history of pilfering designs from less well-known artists, also mentions that it wouldn't ordinarily stoop to publicly discussing this kind of thing, except that "the media response to her campaign is threatening to impact the dozens of independent designers we work with on a daily basis. For many of them, having their work sold at Urban Outfitters is a very positive turning point in their careers, and we will not allow their hard work and commitment, or ours, to be undermined by these false allegations." We reckon they're just . For a catalog of other, similar jewelry designs sold on Etsy and elsewhere prior to both Koerner's and Urban Outfitters' versions, check out on Regretsy. [] The Chanel campaign that Carine Roitfeld styled with her typical sultry sexy sexiness features Freja Beha Erichsen in a Chanel facemask. And, in another shot, some sexy black lace. [] Carine Roitfeld says Kate Winslet will be on the super sexy cover of the next V, which Roitfeld is styling. [] Paparazzi snapped photos of Margherita Missoni and some models shooting the campaign for her company's forthcoming Target collection — which the retailer has been unusually protective of, requiring editors and bloggers to promise not to describe items in any detail, and confiscating their cameras before the press preview. Well, from these photos, the stuff looks an awful lot like Missoni. Surprise. The campaign also seems to involve a turquoise blue Fiat. [ Here is a watch made of diamonds that costs $3 million.[] Old Navy is selling gay pride t-shirts now. []Rumor has it that Vera Wang has moved in with the Olympic champion ice skater Evan Lysacek. The 63-year-old designer and her husband of 23 years, Arthur Becker, announced their separation last month. Lysacek, 27, apparently came to stay at Wang's Beverly Hills home around that time. (He trains at a nearby ice rink.) The exact nature of their relationship is not clear: one friend says that while Wang is "enamoured with" Lysacek, it's not romantic, another says "something is going on." Whatever sexytimes are happening or not happening, they met when Wang, herself a former competitive skater, designed some of Lysacek's uniforms. Wang is also understood to have had a facelift this summer. [] Glamour accidentally ran a three-year-old photo of Korean model Daul Kim in its August issue. Kim in Paris in 2009. "We had no idea about the backstory, and are heartbroken to learn this news," said editor Cindi Leive in a statement. [] Rosie Huntington-Whiteley is on the cover of German GQ. But the publication doesn't have an interview with the starlet, or any other exclusive content: the cover is pegged to the magazine's "tribute" to the Pirelli calendar, the annual high-fashion girlie mag put together by the tire company. Any excuse, we guess, to reprint a three-year-old topless photo of Huntington-Whiteley, who models only rarely now that she has a film career (she's off filming Mad Max 4: Fury Road right this minute, you guys!). Weirdly, German GQ left off Huntington-Whiteley's last name — and her nipple. The original photograph, seen here at left, was shot by Terry Richardson and published in the 2010 Pirelli calendar. [] Lana Del Ray's H&M campaign has leaked. The ads were shot by Inez van Lamsweerde and Vinoodh Matadin, and a clip of the singer covering "Blue Velvet" will air as a T.V. commercial in September. []It's shocking, we know, but some people take Fashion Week really, really seriously. Designers shudder and quake in anticipation as the world's top "fashion journalists" pull out their best and most pretentious purple prose reviewing the Spring/Summer 2008 collections. In our next primer on what the major critics have to say about the shows at New York Fashion Week, we've got Wang (seen at left), Malandrino, Rowley, Taylor, Preen, Schouler (as in "Proenza") and Phat (as in "Baby"). First up, Wang, the favorite designer of the NY Times' feared and hated Cathy Horyn. Vera Wang "painterly colors", "patterns like cloud prints on satin", "inspired by togas", "deep insets of organza", "heavy for a spring collection", "use[d] indecisiveness to an advantage." — Cathy Horyn, NY Times "...most intellectual of American designers", "finely wrought", "elegant, asymmetrical", "limpid...soft, washed crepe de chine", "vibrant colors", "romantic best". — Nicole Phelps, Style.com "Another sojourn to the land of artsy chic", "scaling back obvious intricacy", "air of wistful mystery", "deft and beautiful balancing act", "nonchalant elegance", "each one a graceful knockout", "carefully placed bullion embroideries", "stellar". — WWD "owns the artsy look", "didn't neatly fit into any emerging trends", "a silhouette that is loose but not unwieldy". — Samatha Critchell, Washington Post Proenza Schouler "rough, homespun looking fabrics", "military interpretation", "Balenciaga in the proportions","nags me". — Cathy Horyn, NY Times "decidedly body conscious", "all about the waist and the legs", "a vaguely military air", "tribal feel", "less posh and more street", "explore[d] the idea of contrasts", "as luxe as it gets". — Nicole Phelps, Style.com "chic military-majorette motif", "big-buttoned structure", "almost-frothy, very leggy", "sophisticated cheekiness", "folkloric tweeds", "retained a hint of the street", "the collection felt wanting". — WWD "palette of natural neutrals", "menswear details", "shorter length silhouette", "well-edited", "slight military edge". — Samantha Critchell, Washington Post "took to the fashion frontline in military mode", "crisp, rigorously tailored", "scissored to the body with strategic precision", "a female warrior-fantasy element", "global melange", "Ikat-like embroideries", "superb", "attention to detail was meticulous". — Hilary Alexander, Daily Telegraph Catherine Malandrino "craft touches", "beading in hefty grape clusters", "massive blouson sleeves, voluminous palazzo pants, and linebacker shoulder ruffles", "all got a bit much, actually". — Meenal Mistry, Style.com "highly sophisticated and oh-so-French", "for grown-up ladies", "wonderful stacked heels", "a few overwrought pieces", "on a whole très chic". — WWD "works that fine line between the intriguing and the wearable", "subtlety is in the fabric", "organza whipped like egg whites into soft shapes", "joyful combinations of pattern and color", "glow of geranium" "tracery of jasmine", "romantic feel of summer in a sophisticated way". — Suzy Menkes, International Herald Tribune "garden's variety of looks", "evoke peacefulness", "mastery of handicraft", "showed her sense of humor", "crossed the line into too avant garde". — Samantha Critchell, Washington Post Preen "grow[n] in sophistication and surprise", "fresh interpretation", "sexy looseness", "crinkled drawstring jumpsuits", "[the models had no] upstaging the coolness of the look". — Cathy Horyn, NY Times "Versace territory", "graphic body-con sillouettes", "slouchy", "sensual", "Saint Tropez palatte", "active-sport touches", "best is a mash-up of classics". — Laird Borrelli-Persson, Style.com "sexy tough-chic", "worked on layers", "skin tight, body-conscious", "taut, see-through lace bodices", "tight as a bandage". — Hilary Alexander, Daily Telegraph Cynthia Rowley "conjuring a sporty but stylish tomboy', "mined this vein of sportif chic effectively", "clutter[ed]", "misplaced scarves and belts confused the message". — Joanna Rodger, Style.com "living la vie sportive — '70s style", "a refreshing take", "slouchily cool", "in the vein of a latter-day Annie Hall", "done without those overly fringed dresses", "made one want to take a pair of scissors to them". — WWD Rebecca Taylor "up to her usual tricks","feminine, delicate stuff", "teetered into too-cutesy territory", "balanced things out with a tomboyish motif", "prim", "glitzy", "slouchy, structured or military inspired", "color choices were refreshing". — WWD "sophisticated, muter color palate", "ageless looks", "a bit dressy", "abstract peony design...a common thread". — Samantha Critchell, Washington Post Baby Phat "minus the never-to-be-seen-in-stores fantasy wear", "commercial doesn't mean boring", "gobstopper-sized crystals", "leave little to the imagination", "flashy, at times even trashy" [Say what? - Ed] — WWD "sophisticated", "asymmetrical", "a lot of draping", "flashy, sexy, and urban", "hints of preppiness", "[crowd was] happiest seeing some skin". — Samantha Critchell, Washington PostIn order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.Thanks to photos taken at the Victoria's Secret show rehearsal by the New York Post, we now know what Miranda Kerr looks like wearing a be-tasseled bra encrusted with $2.5 million worth of diamonds. Turns out the squiggly lines on the bra, which was revealed on a mannequin last month, foretold a general Venus-on-the-half-shell theme, and Kerr will walk the show wearing not wings, but a big clamshell contraption made of silver gauze. The supermodel says that if her boobs are looking better than usual, it's thanks to breast milk. "It's milking time," jokes. "I'm still breast-feeding. I'm pumping, and it's going well." It's funny to think that Victoria's Secret is this highly artificial runway show celebrating spray tans and styrofoam wings and boobies and yet a breast-feeding woman is the highlight. Image at the link. [] This is a picture of Iggy Pop holding a bottle of men's perfume. Paco Rabanne would have you believe that Iggy wants you to buy the men's perfume, but those eyes tell another story. [] Some rare and never-before-seen photographs of Marilyn Monroe are going on display at Milk gallery in New York City. Included are several from the so-called Last Sitting (a photo shoot with Bert Stern that occurred six weeks before the actress's death, and from whose contact sheets — or is it just us? — Stern seems to unearth never-before-seen shots with regularity). []To tie in with , Vogue produced an editorial (allegedly) offering modern takes on classic American fashion. Vogue calls them "historic archetypes of our national style." We call them reductive stereotypes of bygone ages.Vogue says it can tell us how these "six quintessential looks are bold (again) today." We say, is this actually intended as a manual for getting dressed? Because that leaves us with some important questions.In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.Vogue books a passage to India this month. And, for once, it brings an Indian model — the divine . It's nice to see, for one, an editorial that doesn't treat a foreign country as just I'm not sure if these photos, by the Swedish photographer , exactly represent an authentic engagement with Indian culture, but I do know that Laksmi Menon really lives in Goa. Like, not just has-a-house-there lives, but lives lives. Last week Menon told Vogue's Sally Singer that she "that the First World has a better life to offer." Menon is 27, and, very unusually, her career had something of a late start (she was already 25 when she began working in India). Now she does runway work for everyone from Alexander Wang to Givenchy. Her success offers a singular rebuttal to the idea that all models have to be underfed Eastern European teenagers. There's something grown-up about this woman who won't move to New York that I like. Of course . This white dress is by Yves Saint Laurent, which probably means it would cover the cost of a return flight to Goa, which just happens to be the location of this shoot. Where you could visit the Menezes Braganza house — "one of Goa's grandest mansions" — and ponder colonialism and its fall out at Literati, a bookstore which Menon particularly recommends. "What's that, you say? This Alexander McQueen dress costs $1,695? I'll take one of your saris instead, thanks." This photo, again, could look really ridiculous — Oh, spontaneous dance party! Yay, fashion! — but instead I'm intrigued by the coloration. The setting sun off the coast casts a perfect light, but what is that red dye that seems to cover everyone and everything? "Proof that simplicity (tank, skirt) and comfort (flat sandals) are often the most liberating luxuries." Question: is it better or worse for Vogue to offer eminently wearable ensembles that nonetheless cost more than anyone's rent? This tank top and skirt run $1165; the shoes are price-on-application at Chloé. Is this, for not being a head-to-toe runway look replete with 6" stilettos, a nod to the ways in which women actually dress as functional human beings with jobs to do and feet that get sore, or is it base and unoriginal pandering to the small subset of the extraordinarily wealthy who lack for white tank tops, white skirts, and the imagination to put them together?Vogue Italia editor Franca Sozzani is (naturally) defending her magazine's controversial current , which features a cast of top models in outlandish wigs and hair pieces and gold grills toting babies, eating fast food, and taking pictures of themselves with their jeweled cell phones. The fact that many of the styles mimicked in the story are associated with poor people of color — and in several cases were ripped directly from source photos of black women that have circulated for years as targets for online mockery, "People of Wal-Mart"-style (note the similarities between the photos at center and right shown above) — has led numerous publications (including ) to raise questions about classism and racism in the spread, and in fashion generally. But Sozzani — who flatly denied that the online images were the real source images, which, come on — isn't having any of it. In fact, Sozzani thinks her critics are crazy. And she means that very literally. After paying lip service to the idea of "mak[ing] a discussion" and how she "respect[s] everybody's opinion," New York asked Sozzani if she accepted the criticism that the spread was classist. Sozzani snapped back: "There are so many sick people around the world that you cannot — I don't care about them. I care about normal people. They want to read and see the normal way as we did. If they are sick, it's not my problem. I am not a psychologist. They should find somebody who could help them." [] In this preview clip from the Kate Moss episode of Absolutely Fabulous, Patsy insults the supermodel's age. [] Gisele Bündchen pulled . She posted this picture to her Facebook page with the caption, "When I went to Africa I discovered that elephants are one of the smartest and most complex mammals on earth. If we don't protect them, they can be extinguished." [] 17-year-old New Zealand Maori model Yasmin Bidois says before she came to New York to pursue her career, she had an after-school job at a movie theater. "Great perks," she says. "Free movies and half price on all food and soda." [] David Beckham says he doesn't regret wearing matching leather outfits to a Versace party with his wife in 1999. "I look back on some stuff and think I can't believe I actually wore that. I have no regrets, though — I knew at the time it was good! Me and Victoria wore matching black leather outfits once. They were Versace. But that's one when I look back and am like, 'What were we thinking?' We laugh about that one. I remember that it's really good until you do it as a couple." []In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted.Today, ran sketches for 's inaugural wardrobe by designers , , Doo.Ri and more Fashion Fund winners. Which means: more styles for everyone to choose from! For The Steps: , 2008 Fashion Fund Winner, says"I actually believe she should wear a pillbox—the new era of Camelot!" We say: a tad literal, no? 's suit is way cuter than his gown. And there's something to be said for classic Chanel... Doo-Ri Chung, 2006's Fashion Fund Winner, says, "The inauguration will be a historic occasion, so I wanted the dress to be something in her comfort zone. I stayed with the tailored, fitted silhouette that she prefers but used a print that I felt was celebratory." We say: srsly? We've seen rocks that felt more celebratory. May We Suggest...? 's look from High Society is both chic and whimsical! For The Ball: The Good: How gorgeous is this ethereal Rodarte? Loving ' Poiret-esque drape. Yeah, 's hitting us over the head with "Jackie O," but still... This is lovely. Downside: we really don't want to see at the , and you know she'd "need" to be there. Derek Lam's "nile green crepe" is one of our faves of the bunch: the simple lines and unconventional hue would feel fresh but classic, and he'd still be a fun and surprising choice. The Bad: Georgina Chapman and Keren Craig of Marchesa say, "For the ball Michelle should wear this ivory one-shoulder silk crepe column with draped overlay and crystal hand-embroidered bodice." We say: Dynasty much? We know Barack loves Lincoln, but 's Mary Todd is a bit much! says: "It's sexy but sophisticated…business in the front, party in the back. It is the inauguration ball!" We say: Maybe that's why you might want to wear something slightly more fun than a friggin' LBD?! We dig the drama of 's gown, but red? Really? It just feels so...First Lady! The Not Happening: The Vena Cava designers, Sophie Buhai and Lisa Mayock, would like to see Michelle rock "this floor-length gown made out of silk and polyester twill in one of our signature prints." We say: with all due respect, we don't think the country's ready for quite that much change. All the Lacroix sketches are totally absurd, like he knows there's no way she's going to choose them. Still, imagine how impressed the French would be! Maybe should just costume the whole capital, like it's a big George M. Cohan show! May We Suggest: If you want to channel 60s, it doesn't get better than in ! Hey, why not? [WWD] [Style.com]Wednesday night, V magazine threw a party to launch its latest issue at the Standard hotel in Manhattan's meatpacking district. Men were asked to wear tuxedoes, ladies were asked to take dress code inspiration from Elizabeth Taylor, and Alexander Wang — whose moves none other than Ryan McGinley has — hit the dance floor. Crystal Renn and Courtney Love were there. Then someone had to be carried out bleeding on a stretcher by FDNY medics. Naturally, events were . Styleite's Verena Von Pfetten, who was at the party, : A few minutes later, we'd enjoy a moment of eerie intuitiveness with Brad Goreski who, after telling us that the roof deck of the club had gone from an area of calm respite to high energy dance party, proclaimed, "This party can turn on a dime." And then a man ran through the crowd with blood dripping from hands. "She's bleeding!" someone cried, as the first man grabbed cloth napkins from the bar. Amidst the chaos, we watched Lohan (with her mother Dina) immediately move her group to another part of the bar while staff tended to the blood-covered shoulder of a curly-haired brunette sitting next to their now abandoned table. "What's going on?" Courtney Love asked us. And as we told her, her eyes got progressively larger and her jaw dropped progressively lower. "We gotta go," she announced, grabbing her friend by the arm. "I'm outskies!" she called over her shoulder as she skedaddled to the exit. Outskies. Courtney Love said "outskies." I was at a different Fashion Week party nearby when the V shindig came to its end, and members of the press started filtering in, looking a little dazed. Everyone was talking about a woman who'd been at Lindsay Lohan's table — or an adjacent table — when she'd suddenly suffered some kind of injury that resulted in a bleeding gash to her arm. Or shoulder; some people said shoulder. Accounts of the cause of her injury were similarly varied. And some people who'd been there, why, they hadn't even seen it at all. Who was this woman? What was the cause of her injury? Was she okay? Nobody really knew. "There was so much blood," said a wide-eyed party reporter. It was like Rashomon, only with more tequila. The whole thing was just so weird. Normally, the only wounds caused by fashion parties are psychological. A PR person who worked on the event declined to comment on the incident. As to how she became injured, reports vary. The Observer that the woman slipped and fell onto a table; the woman, who has not been identified, was nonetheless said by "a source" to be fine. The Post it as the woman falling from a flight of stairs onto a table of glasses, one of which cut her arm. A "witness" told the tabloid, "There was so much blood spurting, it was like a horror movie. The party was packed and blood was spurting onto people's clothes. Paramedics were called, but they took more than 20 minutes to get there, and a friend held the girl's arm to try to stop the bleeding." Nameless woman, if you're out there, how are you? Are you really fine? That sounds like one hell of a night. may have lawyered up and non-apology-apologized for his infamous "I love Hitler" rant — preserved forever by a cell phone video — but if he thinks he's going to somehow be welcomed back at Dior, he's dreaming. Galliano is a great designer who thinks Nazism is awesome, and no matter what Franca Sozzani says, that is not something anyone's career can survive. So who's going to replace him? Here are the names being mentioned. The Candidates Riccardo Tisci, 36, is the head designer at Givenchy. Givenchy is owned by Bernard Arnault's Louis Vuitton Moët Hennessy, the same parent company that owns , and the creative directorship of Givenchy is considered a traditional proving ground/practice mat for the top job at Dior. Galliano came from Givenchy; Alexander McQueen, less successfully, also held the position prior to launching his own label. Post-Galliano, Givenchy went through a bit of a wilderness period. Designer turnover was high (even Julien MacDonald had a go) and collections were...not good. Tisci's arrival in 2005 changed that: Critics love his consistently gothic-inspired aesthetic, and celebrities known for their unusual fashion choices, like Cate Blanchett and Tilda Swinton, love his clothes, too. Tisci is known for his long-lasting relationships with his muses, including the transsexual model Lea T. and fellow Italian Mariacarla Boscono, as well as his friendship with Marina Abramovic. Abramovic has incorporated Tisci's couture into her performance art. (She once even publicly floated the idea of creative directing a Givenchy show, and "teaching the models to walk in a different way.") Tisci has couture experience, which is highly relevant to the Dior gig, and although Givenchy recently stopped producing couture shows every season, its couture collection is (unlike Dior's) said by LVMH to be profitable. Accessories also perform well for Givenchy — the house had quite a hit with its "Nightingale" purse, and everyone knows bags and shoes (along with fragrances and cosmetics) are where most fashion houses make most of their money. There are rumors — all unsourced, unverified, and unverifiable — that Tisci is favored for the job at Dior. Odds: 1 in 4. (Skinny jeans) Alber Elbaz, 49, designs Lanvin. His is a dream position, basically: a generous financial backer, Taiwanese media baron Shaw-Lan Wang, acquired the world's oldest surviving fashion house from L'Oréal in 2001, and hired Elbaz. Her only instructions to him were to "please wake the sleeping giant." Wang waited patiently for the house to become profitable, which it did in 2007. Elbaz has a wide degree of creative freedom, and his clothes — a touch girly, with a focus on draping, raw edges, and bright colors — are generallly beloved by women and critics. Elbaz, who was by the New Yorker's Ariel Levy in 2009, is known for being the chosen successor of Yves Saint Laurent himself (Tom Ford beat him out after Gucci Group acquired the brand). He's also known for his food issues, his shyness, and his kindness: here's a designer who, when he noticed that the models in his show couldn't walk in the six-inch titanium heels he'd designed, delayed his show to get them in flats. (Miuccia Prada, by contrast, said she thought it was "funny" when three models fell in one of her shows.) Would Elbaz leave Lanvin? It's unclear; he certainly seems very happy there, but Dior is on the very short list of houses (Chanel is another) that could theoretically tempt even a designer in that rare position of contentment and security. (Also, Bernard Arnault has a lot of money.) Elbaz's warm, feminine aesthetic could even be a more natural fit at Dior than Tisci's severity. Odds: 1 in 5. (Leopard-print flats) Olivier Theyskens, 34, has held a lot of jobs in fashion — lately, after a period of unemployment, he's been designing a collection for Theory called Theyskens Theory. Previously, the Belgian fashion school drop-out designed his own label (which closed, although Madonna did wear one of his dresses to the Academy Awards in 1998), designed for Rochas (which also shut down, in 2006 — though it has since relaunched under designer Macro Zanini), and Nina Ricci (which fired him, in 2009). Anna Wintour and many critics loved Theyskens' gothic-influenced dresses. And any major luxury house, finding itself with a job vacancy, always places a call to Anna. But Theyskens has a reputation as a financial backer's nightmare: at Rochas, he insisted on designing what was technically ready-to-wear as though it were couture, creating fashions that could not be mass-produced, and required extensive work by hand. Some of his pieces retailed for over $20,000. His profligacy — and his distaste for high-grossing accessories — are among the reasons why Rochas closed down, and why Nina Ricci fired him. Theyskens is extremely talented, and until Andrew Rosen brought him in at Theory, he was one of the most high-profile out-of-work designers around. Dior is also the kind of place where Theyskens' maniacal attention to detail without regard for cost could be an asset, since the house has an actual couture division. But Dior is also a global mega-brand which licenses its name to everything from cosmetics to neckties, and would Theyskens be right for that? Odds: 1 in 15. (A fucking $20,000 dress) Christian Lacroix, 59 — speaking of unemployed couturiers, hello? Why go to the bother of poaching a designer from a perfectly comfy position when one of the 20th Century masters of couture is, as far as I can tell, totally available? Realistically, Lacroix used up all his LVMH second chances long ago; in 2005, Bernard Arnault finally sold Lacroix's label to a company that makes most of its money running an airport duty-free chain. It turned out that, after 18 years in operation under the auspices of LVMH, Lacroix had once turned a profit. (The duty-free chain people didn't do much better, and in 2009, Lacroix's fashion division was closed, its founder and staff were fired, and the company was turned into a licensing operation.) But Lacroix knows couture, his bombastic aesthetic is right for Dior, he'd be perfect. Odds: 1 in 10,000. (Peep-toe boots in the snow) Alexander Wang, 26, was on Twitter as a potential Galliano replacement by none other than Paper magazine's Mickey Boardman. Random? Completely: Wang's famed slouchy-t-shirt-and-skinny-jeans, "model off-duty" aesthetic, relatively low prices (only relatively: we're talking $160 for a sweatshirt, instead of $1,600), and reliance on China for production is light years away from what we think of as Dior. But a young designer is not entirely out of the question; Dior may in fact prefer a creative director who is fresher and less established, provided of course that individual has the vision necessary to carry a major brand. (Yves Saint Laurent, after all, succeeded Christian Dior at the tender age of 21.) Could that person be Alexander Wang? Probably not — but that doesn't mean Joseph Altuzarra and Kate and Laura Mulleavy of Rodarte (who were last year to be in talks to sell a stake in their brand to LVMH) haven't taken any calls. Odds: 1 in 100,000. (A pocket too small to put anything in)Sample-sale websites — like , , and — may seem like convenient ways to get discounted clothes without the hassle of pawing through bins. But here's the trouble with them:For those not yet initiated into the apparently cool but secretly bad world of sample sale sites, a word of introduction. These are online clearinghouses where (sometimes) designer clothes and accessories are sold at deep discounts. Some of them generate a veneer of exclusivity by being (or appearing) invite-only, but most now allow you to just sign up. Then you get a daily email alerting you to the prospect of, say, Alexander Wang dresses, available at prices that, while not exactly affordable, are at least in the stratosphere rather than the ionsophere. And sometimes, if you're lucky, you can snap up cheaper brands (Michael Stars, for instance) at prices that could actually be categorized as cheap. How do Gilt, Swirl, and their ilk manage this? By sucking! Here's how: Time is against you. Like physical sample sales, online sample sales have time limits. But because it's the Internet, these time limits are vanishingly tiny. For the more popular items on Gilt, if you don't get them in your cart within one minute you are screwed (it's worth noting that 's timing seems more forgiving). Gilt then gives you 10 minutes to decide if you really want them, but even that's not really enough time, and you're going to end up buying something you don't really want or need just to keep other people's paws off it. Trust me, and the beautiful jacket sheath dress that I will never, ever wear. It won't fit. Assuming your size isn't totally gone within the first minute of shopping (oh, and that you're a straight size, since plus size sales are rare on these sites, though ), you still don't get to try it on before you buy. And ten minutes — especially in the middle of your workday, when many of the sales start, isn't really enough time to figure out if the garment you're eyeing will really have enough room in the bust (here again, Rue La La is more forgiving, with no obvious countdown once items are in your bag). Yes, fit is a problem with all online shopping. But usually you can at least return your baggy or binding items for a refund. Not so at sample sale sites: Returns are credit-only. At Gilt, Swirl, and , you can only return purchases for store credit, meaning you'll just keep on buying more stuff you don't need and can't fit into, until you spend out your entire credit on shipping costs (some sites give free return shipping, but you still have to pay them to send your next order). Rue La La yet again comes out on top here — they will actually let you . So aside from a pretty terrible name (I know it's meant to be all Frenchy, but it still sounds like I'm going to "rue" my purchases), they're the clear winner in terms of not-horrible shopping experience. But that's not saying a lot, and if you really want to have a pleasant time while purchasing high-end clothes you can actually afford, you probably need to go the Anna Wintour route and just have a zillion dollars. [Official Site] [Official Site] [Official Site] [Official Site] Image via Vladimir Gerasimov/.In order to view comments on jezebel.com you need to enable JavaScript. If you are using Firefox and NoScript addon, please mark jezebel.com as trusted., and may be the instantly recognizable names in American fashion today. But when it comes to the future establishment, will surely be on the list.At just 27 years old, he is the reigning superstar of New York Fashion Week. His runway shows are celebrity-studded and his after-parties are not to be missed. He has a $2-million loft, his collection is sold in 500 venues worldwide, and he has already attracted the attention of the world's biggest luxury group, . (At one point, it was even rumored he was a contender to replace as creative director at Dior, considered to be one of the top jobs in fashion.) Famous fans , and were front row at his runway show in September, while Amanda Hearst, and were among the guests at the self-avowed party boy's fraternity-themed after-party, which featured Jell-O shots, keg stands and performances by Odd Future and Tyler the Creator.Perhaps more than any other American designer working today, Wang is a product of his times, creating collections for a generation raised on the Internet, extreme sports and sexually suggestive imagery and for whom nostalgia means 1990s grunge."I like energy and commotion and absorbing things," Wang said recently at his downtown Manhattain studio. "I'm always texting, watching TV and talking on the phone, even when my friends are over."Like Tom Ford in his years, Wang sees the humor in bad taste. Stiletto sandals with mud flaps, blazers decorated with metal piercings, sparkly Lurex pants and handbags with enough studding to tick off airport security are all part of his sexy-with-a-wink aesthetic. But Wang also designs a lot of really wearable pieces, such as the washed silk sweatpants and ponte knit blazers in his T by Alexander Wang basics line and the botanical print parachute dresses and colorblock intarsia knits from the spring 2012 runway collection he showed last month."Although his runway shows are very directional and very urban, the collections are easy to translate," says Ken Downing, fashion director of ."Whether it's sexy jersey dresses with high-low hems, leather jackets over sportswear pieces or flirty, feminine dresses, he's the [must-have] item guy."Wang's favorite haunts aren't museums or art galleries, but the Kmart drugstore department, Paragon Sports, and fetish stores."I don't disregard anything," the designer says, his long hair, sweet face and T-shirt-and-jeans uniform belying the tough and trashy image of his brand, which includes men's and women's wear and accessories. "If I think something is really ugly, I want to find out why and I want to play with it. I want to challenge myself and make it work."In many ways, Wang represents the tension between the past and the future in fashion, between a slow, more rarified, artisanal luxury and a fast, made-in-, attainable luxury.His prices are well below those of most designer collections — $182 for a jersey dress, $315 for a panne velvet maxiskirt, $585 for a silk streamer dress and up to $3,995 at the top end for a leather and angora poncho straight from the runway. Accessories include $595 pumps with rabbit tails and the bestselling $875 studded Rocco bag."He gets his time and his contemporaries," says designer , who is president of the Council of Fashion Designers of America.Wang launched his line in 2007, gaining attention for his runway shows styled by the L.A.-based model Erin Wasson. At first, his clothes channeled the "off-duty model look" — ripped jean shorts over tights, burnout T-shirts and motorcycle jackets.His collections grew to be more sophisticated. The well-received spring 2009 runway show tapped into a colorful, 1980s-tinged "Miami Vice" vibe, with athletic influences and body-revealing styles emerging as Wang signatures.For a guy who admittedly has never been a big athlete, Wang returns often to sports references, such as the Bruce Weber images of football players that influenced his spring 2010 collection and the uniforms patchworked with sponsor logos and stadium seating charts that were motifs for spring 2012."Growing up, the only sport I took was tennis because I wanted to spend time at the country club," he says, laughing at himself. "But I like the idea of taking something I have such a distant connection to and finding out more about it. If I was a varsity athlete, I would probably feel strongly about how a uniform has to be worn. There is something about not knowing that makes it more interesting."Wang, who is of Taiwanese descent, was born and raised in San Francisco. His parents represent the ultimate American success story, working their way up from service jobs to owning their own plastics manufacturing business.During his teenage years, he lived with his two older siblings while his parents moved their company to China. Wang attended the posh Drew School in San Francisco, with the likes of Samantha, Victoria and Vanessa Traina, daughters of novelist Danielle Steel and her ex-husband John Traina.Wang credits the Traina sisters' throwaway attitude toward designer clothing (ah, to be a rich teenager) with helping to shape his idea of casual luxury. "They had access to anything and everything, and yet there was always a strong sense of personalization and individual thought that went into what they wore," he says. (Wang bonded with Victoria over a pair of Gucci shoes from which she had cut the ankle straps, and they are still close friends.)He started making clothes when he was 15 and had his first fashion show at the 1999 wedding of his brother Dennis (now his chief financial officer) and sister-in-law Aimie Wang (now his chief executive). He showed 30 looks with hair and makeup and dressed the bride, who changed nine times throughout the night, at one point wearing a sexy spin on a traditional Chinese cheongsam in red satin with a super-high slit.Wang moved to New York City to attend Parsons School of Design in 2002 but quickly became restless for real-world experience. He dropped out and began interning — at Marc Jacobs, Teen Vogue and Vogue. By 2004, he had a plan for his own label. "I was helping pull [clothing] at the magazines, and I knew what they were looking for and what they couldn't find at the right price."He put together a line of cashmere sweaters in six weeks. They were oversized, adrogynous "boyfriend sweaters" priced to sell at $295 to $500, one with an intarsia design on the front of a girl smoking. At his first trade show, Wang left with 80 orders."I wanted the pieces to have the integrity of a designer product, but for my friends to be able to afford them," he said. "There was a disconnect between what they saw and read about in magazines and what they could buy."That's where Wang saw an opportunity. And he hasn't stopped moving since, even bounding out at full speed onto the runway when he takes his bow after each show.In December, Wang tapped Rodrigo Bazan, formerly of Marc Jacobs, as the first president of his company. In March, he launched a comprehensive e-commerce site (the Web is the biggest driver of growth for the brand, Wang says). The same month, he opened his first bricks-and-mortar boutique in New York with such decorative flourishes as a fox fur hammock and an industrial cage used for rotating installations. Another store is slated to open next year in Beijing, and a home accessories line is also on the horizon."Now more than ever, the world is changing," Wang says. "It's not just about being a designer. It's about being a creative person who can oversee an entire brand down to the stores and the people who sell the product." and fashion darling reportedly married actor on Sunday night in Mt. Pleasant, S.C., with Florence Welch performing. The pair have publicly been a couple for about a year. No word yet on the wedding gown, but we're betting on . Writer/actor Mindy Kaling has been sending funny, fake tweets from New York Fashion Week, giving the sort of details we might wish were true (like having her seat at stolen by Olympic swimmer and having a romantic fling with at the Trump Hotel). Liberty Ross, the wronged wife in the Kristen Stewart-Rupert Sanders affair, walked in 's New York Fashion Week show Saturday and says she was terrified at making this first official (and surprise) appearance after the scandal. showed her capsule collection for Macy's Impulse at Macy's Glamorama on Friday night in Los Angeles, and Sean "P. Diddy" Combs showed off the latest in his Sean Jean line. The annual fundraiser benefits and charities, and this year it also featured , Robin Thicke and Karmin. debuts a new daytime Monday, and she'll be showing off a new, more sophisticated style along with it. ()'s House of Dereon reportedly is in retooling mode with plans to distribute in the U.S., rather than exclusively in Europe. (Subscription required.)Over at 's show, the designer was talking backstage about the huge spike in orders arising since First Lady wore that gorgeous Reese dress to address the nation during the last week. ALSO:Distilling dozens of designer collections isn't easy. But after a month-long cavalcade of fashion weeks in the style capitals of Paris, Milan, London and New York, here goes — our picks for the fall-winter 2011 season's top five trends.Caped crusaders: The newest-looking outerwear pieces for the season are capes and ponchos. There was one or the other in nearly every collection, and choices to suit nearly every mood, from sporty (Rag & Bone) to sleek () to sex kitten (). Novelty furs: Fur has been a perennial on the fall-winter runways for several years now. So this season, designers had to use it even more creatively to get our attention — on goggle straps (Wang), dickies (), cross-body bags () and even grocery carts that models wheeled down the runway ().Lace: It was the stuff of plains women at , ladylike artistes at and fetish queens at Louis Vuitton. Lace embellished everything, even the models' faces, at .Sixties rewind: There were nods to mod at , , and . And the entire collection was inspired by 1960s supermodel Jean Shrimpton. Other designers (at , and ) took midcentury couture shapes and translated them for today, using modern materials and sportswear accents.Glam : Forget the greasy hair and thrift store finds of the Kurt and Courtney days. Grunge went glam on the runways at , , , and Alexander Wang, with a long, lanky silhouette and long, loose layers of rich fabric.Stealth wealth. Fashion gaming. . . What else? Here's a list of stylish people, trends and ideas to pay attention to in 2012.Surrealism. Opening May 10, the Costume Institute's exhibition "Schiaparelli and : Impossible Conversations" will explore the link between 1930s era Italian fashion designer Elsa Schiaparelli and her modern-day counterpart Miuccia Prada. Both designers have been informed by the whimsical motifs of surrealism. Schiapparelli created the iconic lobster dress, shoe hat and insect brooch, and Prada created lip-print skirts, tromp l'oeil jackets and, for spring 2012, shoes with "flames" and "headlights" inspired by cars. Both designers were influenced by contemporary artists of their time — Schiaparelli by and , and Prada by Anish Kapoor, Dan Flavin and others featured in her Milan art space and museum, the Prada Foundation. Art Deco. The spring 2012 collections haven't hit stores yet, but the 1920s trend evident when they were shown on the runways last fall is already making an impact on the red carpet. Florence Welch and have both worn black-and-gold fringed dresses from 's Art Deco-themed spring collection on red carpets in recent weeks. And now that set in 1927 Hollywood, is a front-runner at the awards shows, we're likely to see more flappers and fringe as the red carpet season heats up. Also, in December 's take on "The Great Gatsby," set in the Jazz Age, is slated to hit movie theaters with and Carey Mulligan in the title roles, and with costumes designed by Luhrmann's wife, Catherine Martin, who wowed us with her stylish work on and "Moulin Rouge."Hollywood costume designers. Too long relegated to the sidelines, Martin and other Hollywood costume designers will get their due in a blockbuster exhibition opening Oct. 20 at the Victoria & Albert Museum in London. Curated by Deborah Nadoolman Landis, director of the David C. Copley Center for the Study of Costume Design at UCLA, "Hollywood Costume" will feature gems from every decade of film, from the early days of to the 2012 Batman film, "The Dark Knight Rises." For a sneak peek, check out Landis' 2007 book "Dressed: A Century of Hollywood Costume Design" (Harper Design).Designer fast fashion fizzle? Sure, fast fashion designer collaborations make news. But do they still make sales? Despite the buying frenzies of 2011, there were also plenty of returns in stores and items put up for sale on EBay from last year's for and for H&M collections. And the for merchandise didn't seem to move much at all. The next big designer collaboration is at H&M, debuting on March 8. Marni designer Consuelo Castiglioni has a knack for color and print, but her designs are quite avant garde, which could make this collection H&M's most esoteric yet — after Comme des Garcons, that is. directed the ad campaign. We'll see who lines up for the launch.Fashiontainment. It seems like there are more fashion-themed TV shows now than ever, including 's "Project Runway All Stars," which premiered Thursday, with and designer alumni from the original show; Lifetime's "24 Hour Catwalk" with and Derek Blasburg (premiering Tuesday), and NBC's with and (premiering March 13). All three shows follow the familiar designer competition format. What else to watch? "Jane by Design" (premiered Jan. 3), a scripted series on that's a cross between and "The Devil Wears Prada," and "It's a Brad, Brad World" (premiered Monday), a on Bravo that follows stylist and ex- assistant Brad Goreski.Stealth wealth. dominated the headlines last year, and now the Courage Campaign is trying to drum up support for a November ballot measure to increase taxes on wealthy Californians, using as their example of millionaires who could pay more. Will the growing class division and jobs debate usher in an era of stealth wealth style? Only time will tell. But for now, Kim, you might want to leave that Birkin bag at home.A Dior decision. It's been 10 months and counting since Dior has had a creative director at the helm of its ready-to-wear and couture collections. was abruptly fired in March after he was caught on video making anti-Semitic slurs, and the collections have been designed by the house team since then. Meanwhile, nearly every major designer working today has been rumored to be in the running to be his replacement, including Riccardo Tisci, Sarah Burton, and (who recently told Vogue magazine he turned it down). So who is going to take the job? Women's Wear Daily reported last month that Dior was closing in on Raf Simons. The Belgian designer at the helm of would certainly be an inspired choice. His modern interpretations of couture shapes, in high-voltage colors, have made the Jil Sander runway collections among the most influential in recent seasons. It would be exciting to see what he would do given the resources and archives of a real couture house. But Dior still isn't commenting., the new . The momentum for Brazil as an emerging luxury market has been building for some time now. And in 2012, 30 high-end brands are set to open stores there, according to Forbes magazine, including Prada, Dolce & Gabbana and . With the debt crisis continuing to dog Europe, that makes Brazil a bright spot for fashion. When luxury brands started looking to China for business opportunities, designers also looked there for inspiration. Maybe we'll see the enthusiasm for Brazil turning up on the runway too. Samba style anyone?Feel-good fashion. It was almost as if designers were trying to will optimism back into shoppers' mind-sets (and wallets) with the spring 2012 collections, which were awash with upbeat color (, ), prints (, ) and ethereal pearlescence (, ). Call it feel-good fashion.Media mash-ups. Facing declining readership and more ad dollars migrating to the Web, glossy fashion magazines will continue to try to reinvent themselves to generate more revenue. Harper's Bazaar and Glamour are planning major redesigns, while other titles are plotting moves into e-commerce and entertainment. Last year, Conde Nast (which owns Vogue and Vanity Fair, among other titles) launched an entertainment division to develop TV, film and book properties. Details entered into a partnership with e-commerce site Mr. Porter, and did the same with Gilt Groupe. Look out for more media mash-ups in the coming months.Counterfeiting in fashion. The battle over fakes in fashion seems to be escalating after several recent high-profile lawsuits over designer trademarks (Christian Louboutin vs. over who can use red soles on shoes, and Louis Vuitton vs. over fake LV logo luggage in the film ), and the Obama administration's increased focus on the issue leading to more vigorous crackdowns from law enforcement. (Last month, in a single raid at the , federal authorities seized $4 million in fake designer jeans, apparel and shoes with Gucci, North Face and True Religion labels). The Innovative Design and Protection Piracy and Prevention Act (which has the support of some in the industry, but not others) was introduced in Congress last year and is being reviewed by a House subcommittee.Shopping 3.0. It's now possible to shop from your desk and your phone, to pre-order designer looks straight from the runway (ModaOperandi.com) or borrow them for a special occasion (RentTheRunway.com), to ask our friends for advice (ShopWithYourFriends.com) and comparison shop for the best deal (ShopWiki.com). In 2012, there will be even more out there to entice tech-savvy shoppers. Some possibilities? Kiosks in brick-and-mortar stores offering personalized style suggestions, crowd-sourced clothing designs, and social gaming adding a fun, interactive element to the e-commerce experience.DCR1DR at 3:49 PM September 05, 2012 YEAH YEAH YEAH, this week the Obama's are super spies, hiding top secrets in their secret hideaway, plotting to take over the world, and thier daughter's and her mother are really robots in disguise! amazing, people want to take the time to dig into thier past well go ahead, its there all one has to do is plug the question into the computer, every-time a stupid question is asked i google it in and get an answer, then i double check it somewhere else, the problem being some don't want to believe what they see so they discount it and state its not available. which no one has asked any of the other presidents or first ladies these questions, but then again people did'nt feel the need to have tojustify thier hate for a couple coming in the front door instead of the back before! This couple i applaud for having the mental strength to stand and be counted while ignoring the nastiness and ignorance surrounding them, i don't know how they do it, one of the first things i would do if i were them if reelected is hand all those so called idiots who are supposed to be standing with me a pink slip, write i won on mybehind and have the picture go viral on u-tube after all it can't be worse than what all the others have done, and well the Kennedy's they still are going strong in the scandal department! starts Tuesday, the last and most important of the September weeks dedicated to designers' collections for spring-summer 2013. The Cut blog notes that so far, in collections seen in New York, London and Milan, there's been a big Japanese influence, evident at , , and , in details such as wing-shaped shoulders, wide pants and "origami-like organdy." (Follow Los Angeles Times' Fashion Critic Booth Moore's coverage of Paris Fashion Week on our All the Rage blog.) apparently took the Japanese influence a bit too far recently with a lingerie outfit the company named "Sexy Little Geisha." The outfit, a mesh teddy with floral accents, provoked criticism and complaints of racism and stereotypes, and now it seems to have been pulled from the Vicky's website. But they still have Sexy Little Cowgirl, Sexy Little Mobster, Sexy Little Sergeant, et al. announced another stab at resuscitation on Monday. The label, which faltered when briefly served as artistic advisor in 2009 and which later hired and then lost designer Deacon, has tapped young designerFausto Puglisi -- who has designed masks for 's MDNA tour -- as creative director and plans to return to the Paris runways next year. Former first lady Imelda Marcos' infamous shoe collection (she had well over 1,200 pairs) has been almost destroyed by termites and water damage in a basement at the museum in where they were being stored. plans to launch a new brand specifically for China that blends traditional Chinese ingredients (such as ginseng) with Western marketing. ALSO:Fall's hottest hairstyles include perfect and polished 1950s ponytails and pixie cuts inspired by 's late-1960s crop. The trendiest styles from fashion runways and the red carpet are pulled up, swept to the side or simply chopped off.Top knot This style seems to rule with leading ladies, as well as with tweens and twentysomethings who love 's hair in "Breakfast at Tiffany's." and Molly Sims have been spotted recently with their hair piled up on the tops of their heads and coiled around like a dollop of whipped cream. The look is reminiscent of the 1960s and shows off a pretty face and high cheekbones. The set is also sporting this look, but in an edgier way, with hair on the sides slicked up against the head and the knot a bit tighter and more twisted than the coif that's been seen on the red carpet.The style is likely to stick around for spring: Frédéric Fekkai stylist Renato Campora gave models at the Marchesa spring 2011 runway show in September a tight, braided top knot that sat toward the front of the head. To get this look, Campora applied a rich styling cream called Fekkai Essential Shea Tame & Style Pot de Crème. He flipped the head over so the hair fell toward the top, braided the hair, wound it around and then secured it to the crown of the head.Pixie cutPlenty of young celebrities also have cut off their hair for a 1960s-inspired gamine look that is evocative of Mia Farrow's in "Rosemary's Baby." Celebrities including , , and, most recently, have chopped their once long, extension-filled and over-processed Hollywood hair to show off pretty faces and delicate features. Perhaps they are trying to drive the idea home that they are serious actresses, not to be lumped in with the 15-minutes-of-fame reality stars. (In Simpson-Wentz's case, it could be that her hair was fried from the black to red to platinum dye jobs she's been juggling the last few years.) Either way, cutting their hair so short is a gutsy move that sets them apart from the pack of over-styled starlets.1950s ponytailAnother pulled-back look seen on the runway is the perky and flirty " -esque" ponytail like the kind that appeared in Louis Vuitton's fall 2010 fashion shows. The hair perfectly complemented the collection's full, below-the-knee skirts and heels. The key to this chic ponytail versus your running-errands-on-a-Sunday-afternoon pony is the sleek front and the flip at the ends. This may take more time to style than you're used to, but the look adds some sweetness to fall's cashmere sweaters and a "Mad Men" quality to holiday party dresses.Side-swept braidA style that started on the runways of designers such as Alexander Wang and Miu Miu when they showed their collections for spring 2010 seems to be sticking around with no signs of stopping. The loose and slightly disheveled side braid is being worn casually as well as with cocktail dresses on the red carpet. Actress Kate Mara recently paired a side-swept fish-tail braid with a pink one-shoulder cocktail frock at the 2010 Teen Vogue Young Hollywood party. On the street, stylish girls seem to be taking their cues from celebrities such as Mara and by finessing their hair into side-swept braids. If you've mastered the style, keep wearing it past fall. The side braid works perfectly with spring 2011's 1970s-inspired collections.In 1954, when was asked what she wore in bed, she famously replied, "Why, No. 5, of course." And sales of the perfume skyrocketed.That was a free endorsement, back when there was such a thing. Hollywood and the fragrance industry have been intertwined ever since, with celebrities competing for high-profile endorsement deals, or creating and marketing their own scents, and luxury brands hiring big-name directors and ratcheting up the production values of their advertising campaigns to rival big box office releases.This fall brings a new array of perfumes starring famous faces in print and film campaigns, most notably Premiere, which debuts with a short film starring , directed by Nicolas Winding Refn () and premiering at the Venice Film Festival. Here is a rundown of the season's brightest new releases.Gucci PremiereStarring: Blake LivelyThe story line: Celebrating the star in every woman.The juice: Wood, musk, bergamot and orange blossom.Balenciaga FlorabotanicaStarring:Kristen StewartThe story line: A fractured fairy tale of mesmerizing flowers.The juice: A hybrid rose with a resonance of wood and moss.LancomeLa Vie Est BelleStarring: Julia RobertsThe story line: A triumph of the independent spirit.The juice: Iris, patchouli and praline — "an oriental fragrance with a twist of gourmand."Vera Wang LovestruckFloral RushA lot has been made of organic cotton and other eco-friendly fabrics made from Tencel, hemp and bamboo as fashion rides the mega-trend of environmentalism. But recycled clothes purchased at thrift and consignment stores, as well as upcycled items reworked from out-of-date castoffs, may be an even greener choice. Almost half of the climate impact of clothing occurs before it reaches consumers.It was this idea I embraced when I hired a wardrobe consultant for a desperately needed eco fashion makeover.For years, I spent most mornings dreading getting dressed. My closet was stuffed, yet I found myself pulling the same five outfits every week, most of which looked exactly as I felt: dumpy. I'm not one of these women who intrinsically understands how to put together an outfit. In fact, since becoming a mother, one of the biggest factors in my wardrobe selection has involved the answer to this question: Is it clean? I was so far down the rabbit hole of middle-aged frump that I needed a fashion overhaul, so, with on my mind, I called Meg Gallagher, a personal stylist who, in 2009, started a bicoastal fashion consulting business and runs a blog called Madison to Melrose.I heard about Gallagher from a friend of a friend who'd dropped $1,000 and had a transformative experience. I was hoping for similar results at about the same price point. I just wanted to do it in a way that was less wasteful than buying clothes new since manufacturing is so resource-intensive.Gallagher, 40, is a fashion industry veteran who worked as a design director for a New York knitwear company for several years before moving to the L.A. area. Part of a growing legion of personal stylists, Gallagher does not specialize in eco fashion, though she does have some clients who prefer vintage. She thought my idea was "a super fun challenge," she said, and took it on because, at 5 feet 8 and 135 pounds, I'm an "easy fit."A few days after an email exchange and a phone call, she was standing in my living room in a fetching peplum jacket, white skinny jeans and strappy black stilettos — a notepad in one hand and an empty clothing rack in the other — ready to take notes about my coloring, body type, color preferences, personality and lifestyle before tackling my closet for a thorough edit."For most people, the biggest frustration is that their closet doesn't represent their lifestyle," said Gallagher, who noted an abundance of jackets and an absence of pants, skirts, dresses and feminine shoes in a wardrobe that was a mishmash of motorcycling and mothering. For two hours I tried everything on while she assessed the condition and workability of each piece, created a pile of giveaways and came up with a shopping list.The shopping list is critical, Gallagher said. Most people buy clothes impulsively: "They keep buying and buying and they wind up with all these clothes they don't know how to put together."Part of my makeover goal was to dress with more femininity while maintaining some edge. Gallagher suggested several types of shoes to complement my half-dozen pairs of motorcycle boots and a few skirts that could sub in for the denim I wear almost daily.My appearance already shouted it loud and clear — I've been thrifting most of my clothes for a couple of years now, my usual go-tos being Trading Co. and my local Goodwill. But Gallagher had some additional ideas that incorporated the many fashion-forward thrift and consignment shops that have opened in L.A. recently, including Ampersand on Larchmont and Buttons and Bows downtown, along with the better-known, curated-thrift venues Wasteland and Crossroads, both with branches on Melrose Avenue.Thrift often takes longer to shop than first-run because everything is one of a kind, so for our first shopping excursion, Gallagher went to Wasteland 90 minutes ahead of me to pull items. The next two hours included the usual series of dressing room hits and misses. In the end I walked out with nine items totaling $411, including a pair of black skinny jeans, a lace-trimmed Ella Moss sweater, a pair of fringe-y flats and two feminine leather jackets — all of them in excellent condition. We picked up a pair of Camilla Skovgaard slip-on heels across the street for $71 more.Still, I was missing certain things, according to the shopping list Gallagher had created, including some neutral sandals and a taupe handbag. Because I don't trust my eye and was so pleased with what Gallagher was able to find, I hired her for a second round of shopping, which she bills at $75 per hour. (The cost for my first four hours was $300.) We hit up Reformation on Melrose, which deconstructs and reworks used clothes and over-runs of textiles into chic pieces such as leather shorts and slouchy sweaters. I purchased two drapey tank tops made from fabric overruns for $75 apiece from the shop I consider my new favorite.Finally, we were off to Ampersand, where I made my biggest splurges, including two pairs of heels, a Chloé handbag and an leather vest that represented, to me at least, a shift in my thinking toward quality and longevity rather than easy and cheap.I ended up giving 57 clothing items, or about two-thirds of what was in my closet (most of which I didn't wear anyway) to my local Goodwill. I spent $710 purchasing six tops, four pairs of shoes, three leather jackets, two fabric jackets, two sweaters, one skirt and one dress, which are now in heavy rotation. I spent an additional $1,240 on two of the most expensive clothing items I've ever purchased in my life — the designer handbag and leather vest — and $40 more on a pair of white skinny jeans from Zara since I couldn't find them used.In total, Gallagher's services cost me $875, including the last hour she spent with me at my house, assembling 30 outfits from the items she'd found for me, so I'd understand how to put them together, and taking pictures of them so I could use them for future reference. Gallagher warned that I might be tempted to go back to my old ways of doing things and counseled me to resist that temptation and "own" my new look.I spent far more than I anticipated, but I justify it as "pent-up demand." I'm feeling a lot more attractive and confident than I have in years. And it's enormously satisfying to accomplish so much in a way that didn't compromise my environmental values. As a whole, that's priceless.The modern guy's golfing gear shouldn't look like it was pilfered from dad's closet.Enter Sub70, a collection of colorful golf duds made for young guns (think ) that also works when worn off the green. The line was hatched in and is making its U.S. debut at the Ron Robinson boutique in Los Angeles this weekend, courtesy of a licensing agreement between the British brand and stateside entrepreneur Randy Gordon, formerly responsible for bringing the Milan-based ToyWatch brand to the U.S.Ranging in price from $30 for a leather belt with a logo-emblazoned enamel buckle to $90 for a lean fit, flat-front micro-fiber trouser, the collection boasts a slim, Euro fit and retro 1960s-inspired aesthetics.Tartan-print trousers (in a slightly stretchy polyester-spandex blend) and button-up polo shorts with collars and pockets in contrasting colors are more reminiscent of 's day than '."I think [the collection] fills a void, both style-wise and price-wise," Gordon said, adding, "I also feel it has strong crossover appeal in the lifestyle market, appealing to the fashion customer as well."Pants and shorts feature flat-fronts and a dropped back yoke with angled pockets for a sportswear-influenced fit. Fabrics for shirts and pants are athletic — wicking away moisture and keeping the wearer cool — but not so sporty that they couldn't be worn to a barbecue after you've killed it on the golf course.The Sub70 collection is available on the company's website and at Ron Robinson at Fred Segal, 8118 Melrose Ave., Los Angeles. (323) 651-1800. 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Saturday; noon to 6 p.m. Sunday.sub70usa.comOPENINGJack Spade Saturday: Just in time for , men's fashion and accessories brand Jack Spade has opened its first Orange County store at Fashion Island. The shop features classic sportswear, wallets, key chains, travel kits and its famously pared-down man-satchels, including brief cases, messenger bags, computer cases and duffles.401 Newport Center Dr., Newport Beach. 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday; 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Friday; 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday.H&M Thursday: Swedish fast-fashion retailer H&M debuts its newest SoCal store at Westfield West Covina shopping center. The two-floor location will stock women's, men's and children's clothes, and will feature distinct sections for lingerie, maternity, athletic wear and accessories. In celebration of opening day, the store will offer the first 100 shoppers in line an H&M T-shirt and a gift card valued from $10 to $300.1480 Plaza Drive, West Covina. (626) 962-6053. 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Saturday; 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Sunday./Charlotte Russe: Fashion retailer Charlotte Russe recently opened a new location at the Irvine Spectrum Center, offering its signature mix of low-priced, trend-right clothes, shoes and accessories for teens and twenty-somethings.71 Fortune Drive, Irvine. (949) 727-1417. 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Thursday and Sunday; 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Friday and Saturday.GENERAL FIELDRecord of the Year"Rolling In The Deep" - Adele"Holocene" - Bon Iver"Grenade" - Bruno Mars"The Cave" - Mumford & Sons"Firework" - Katy PerryAlbum of the Year"21" - Adele"Wasting Light" - Foo Fighters"Born This Way" - Lady Gaga"Doo-Wops & Hooligans" - Bruno Mars"Loud" - RihannaSong of the Year"All Of The Lights" - Jeff Bhasker, Malik Jones, Warren Trotter & Kanye West, songwriters (Kanye West, Rihanna, Kid Cudi & Fergie)"The Cave" - Ted Dwane, Ben Lovett, Marcus Mumford & Country Winston, songwriters (Mumford & Sons)"Grenade" - Brody Brown, Claude Kelly, Philip Lawrence, Ari Levine, Bruno Mars & Andrew Wyatt, songwriters (Bruno Mars)"Holocene" - Justin Vernon, songwriter (Bon Iver)"Rolling In The Deep" - Adele Adkins & Paul Epworth, songwriters (Adele)Best New ArtistThe Band PerryBon IverJ. ColeNicki MinajSkrillexPOP FIELDBest Pop Solo Performance"Someone Like You" - Adele"Yoü And I" - Lady Gaga"Grenade" - Bruno Bars"Firework" - Katy Perry"... Perfect" - PinkBest Pop Duo/Group Performance"Body And Soul" - Tony Bennett & Amy Winehouse"Dearest" - The Black Keys"Paradise" - Coldplay"Pumped Up Kicks" - Foster the People"Moves Like Jagger" - Maroon 5 & Christina AguileraBest Pop Instrumental Album"Wish Upon A Star" - Jenny Oaks Baker"E Kahe Malie" - Daniel Ho"The Road From Memphis" - Booker T. Jones"Hello Tomorrow" - Dave Koz"Setzer Goes Instru-Mental!" - Brian SetzerBest Pop Vocal Album"21" - Adele"The Lady Killer" - Cee Lo Green"Born This Way" - Lady Gaga"Doo-Wops & Hooligans" - Bruno Mars"Loud" - RihannaDANCE/ELECTRONICA FIELDBest Dance Recording"Raise Your Weapon" - Deadmau5 & Greta Svabo Bech"Barbra Streisand" - Duck Sauce"Sunshine" - David Guetta & Avicii"Call Your Girlfriend" - Robyn"Scary Monsters And Nice Sprites" - Skrillex"Save The World" - Swedish House MafiaBest Dance/Electronica Album"Zonoscope" - Cut/Copy"4x4=12" - Deadmau5"Nothing But The Beat" - David Guetta"Body Talk, Pt. 3" - Robyn"Scary Monsters And Nice Sprites" - SkrillexTRADITIONAL POP FIELDBest Traditional Pop Vocal Album"Duets II" - Tony Bennett & Various Artists"The Gift" - Susan Boyle"In Concert On Broadway" - Harry Connick Jr."Music Is Better Than Words" - Seth MacFarlane"What Matters Most - Barbra Streisand Sings The Lyrics Of Alan And Marilyn Bergman" - Barbra StreisandROCK FIELDBest Rock Performance"Every Teardrop Is A Waterfall" - Coldplay"Down By The Water" - The Decemberists"Walk" - Foo Fighters"The Cave" - Mumford & Sons"Lotus Flower" - RadioheadBest Hard Rock/Metal Performance"On The Backs Of Angels" - Dream Theater"White Limo" - Foo Fighters"Curl Of The Burl" - Mastodon"Public Enemy No. 1" - Megadeth"Blood In My Eyes" - Sum 41Best Rock Song"The Cave" - Ted Dwane, Ben Lovett, Marcus Mumford & Country Winston, songwriters (Mumford & Sons)"Down By The Water" - Colin Meloy, songwriter (The Decemberists)"Every Teardrop Is A Waterfall" - Guy Berryman, Jonny Buckland, Will Champion & Chris Martin, songwriters (Coldplay)"Lotus Flower" - Colin Greenwood, Jonny Greenwood, Ed O'Brien, Phil Selway & Thom Yorke, songwriters (Radiohead)"Walk" - Foo Fighters, songwriters (Foo Fighters)Best Rock Album"Rock 'N' Roll Party Honoring Les Paul" - Jeff Beck"Wasting Light" - Foo Fighters"Come Around Sundown" - Kings of Leon"I'm With You" - Red Hot Chili Peppers"The Whole Love" - WilcoALTERNATIVE FIELDBest Alternative Music Album"Bon Iver" - Bon Iver"Codes And Keys" - Death Cab For Cutie"Torches" - Foster The People"Circuital" - My Morning Jacket"The King of Limbs" - RadioheadR&B FIELDBest R&B Performance"Far Away" - Marsha Ambrosius"Pieces Of Me" - Ledisi"Not My Daddy" - Kelly Price & Stokley"Is This Love" - Corinne Bailey Rae"You Are" - Charlie WilsonBest Traditional R&B Performance"Sometimes I Cry" - Eric Benét"Fool For You" - Cee Lo Green & Melanie Fiona"Radio Message" - R. Kelly"Good Man" - Raphael Saadiq"Surrender" - Betty Wright & The RootsBest R&B Song"Far Away" - Marsha Ambrosius, Sterling Simms & Justin Smith, songwriters (Marsha Ambrosius)"Fool For You" - Cee Lo Green & Jack Splash, songwriters (Cee Lo Green & Melanie Fiona)"Not My Daddy" - Kelly Price, songwriter (Kelly Price & Stokley)"Pieces Of Me" - Charles Harmon, Claude Kelly & Ledisi Young, songwriters (Ledisi)"You Are" - Dennis Bettis, Carl M. Days, Jr., Wirlie Morris, Charlie Wilson & Mahin Wilson, songwriters (Charlie Wilson)Best R&B Album"F.A.M.E." - Chris Brown"Second Chance" - El DeBarge"Love Letter" - R. Kelly"Pieces Of Me" - Ledisi"Kelly" - Kelly PriceRAP FIELDBest Rap Performance"Look At Me Now" - Chris Brown, Lil Wayne & Busta Rhymes"Otis" - Jay-Z & Kanye West"The Show Goes On" - Lupe Fiasco"Moment 4 Life" - Nicki Minaj & Drake"Black And Yellow" - Wiz KhalifaBest Rap/Sung Collaboration"Party" - Beyoncé & André 3000"I'm On One" - DJ Khaled, Drake, Rick Ross & Lil Wayne"I Need A Doctor" - Dr. Dre, Eminem & Skylar Grey"What's My Name?" - Rihanna & Drake"Motivation" - Kelly Rowland & Lil Wayne"All Of The Lights" - Kanye West, Rihanna, Kid Cudi & FergieBest Rap Song"All Of The Lights" - Jeff Bhasker, Malik Jones, Warren Trotter & Kanye West, songwriters (Kanye West, Rihanna, Kid Cudi & Fergie)"Black And Yellow" - Mikkel Eriksen, Tor Erik Hermansen & Cameron Thomaz, songwriters (Wiz Khalifa)"I Need A Doctor" - Andre Young, Marshall Mathers III, Alexander Grant & Skylar Grey, songwriters (Dr. Dre, Eminem & Skylar Grey)"Look At Me Now" - Jean Baptiste, Chris Brown, Ryan Buendia, Trevor Smith, Dwayne Carter, Jr. & Wesley Pentz, songwriters (Chris Brown, Lil Wayne & Busta Rhymes)"Otis" - Shawn Carter & Kanye West, songwriters (James Brown, Jimmy Campbell, Reg Connelly, Roy Hammond, J. Roach, Kirk Robinson & Harry Woods, songwriters) (Jay-Z & Kanye West)"The Show Goes On" - Dustin William Brower, Jonathon Keith Brown, Daniel Johnson, Kane & Wasalu Muhammad Jaco, songwriters (Isaac Brock, Dann Gallucci & Eric Judy, songwriters) (Lupe Fiasco) Best Rap Album"Watch The Throne" - Jay-Z & Kanye West"Tha Carter IV" - Lil Wayne"Lasers" - Lupe Fiasco"Pink Friday" - Nicki Minaj"My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy" - Kanye WestCOUNTRY FIELDBest Country Solo Performance"Dirt Road Anthem" - Jason Aldean"I'm Gonna Love You Through It" - Martina McBride"Honey Bee" - Blake Shelton"Mean" - Taylor Swift"Mama's Song" - Carrie UnderwoodBest Country Duo/Group Performance"Don't You Wanna Stay" - Jason Aldean With Kelly Clarkson"You And Tequila" - Kenny Chesney Featuring Grace Potter"Barton Hollow" - The Civil Wars"Are You Gonna Kiss Me Or Not" - Thompson SquareBest Country Song"Are You Gonna Kiss Me Or Not" - Jim Collins & David Lee Murphy, songwriters (Thompson Square)"God Gave Me You" - Dave Barnes, songwriter (Blake Shelton)"Just Fishin'" - Casey Beathard, Monty Criswell & Ed Hill, songwriters (Trace Adkins)"Mean" - Taylor Swift, songwriter (Taylor Swift)"Threaten Me With Heaven" - Vince Gill, Amy Grant, Will Owsley & Dillon O'Brian, songwriters (Vince Gill)"You And Tequila" - Matraca Berg & Deana Carter, songwriters (Kenny Chesney Featuring Grace Potter)Best Country Album"My Kinda Party" - Jason Aldean"Chief" - Eric Church"Own The Night" - Lady Antebellum"Red River Blue" - Blake Shelton"Here For A Good Time" - George Strait"Speak Now" - Taylor SwiftNEW AGE FIELDBest New Age Album"Northern Seas" - Al Conti"Gaia" - Michael Brant DeMaria"Wind, Rock, Sea & Flame" - Peter Kater"What's It All About" - Pat Metheny"Instrumental Oasis, Vol. 6" - ZamoraJAZZ FIELDBest Improvised Jazz Solo"All Or Nothing At All" - Randy Brecker, soloist"You Are My Sunshine" - Ron Carter, soloist"500 Miles High" - Chick Corea, soloist"Work" - Fred Hersch, soloist"Sonnymoon For Two" - Sonny Rollins, soloistBest Jazz Vocal Album"'Round Midnight" - Karrin Allyson"The Mosaic Project" - Terry Lyne Carrington & Various Artists"The Gate" - Kurt Elling"American Road" - Tierney Sutton (Band)"The Music of Randy Newman" - Roseanna VitroBest Jazz Instrumental Album"Bond: The Paris Sessions" - Gerald Clayton"Forever" - Corea, Clarke & White"Alone At The Vanguard" - Fred Hersch"Bird Songs" - Joe Lovano/Us Five"Road Shows Vol. 2" - Sonny Rollins"Timeline" - YellowjacketsBest Large Jazz Ensemble Album"The Jazz Ballad Song Book" - Randy Brecker With DR Big Band"The Good Feeling" - Christian McBride Big Band"40 Acres And A Burro" - Arturo O'Farrill & The Afro Latin Jazz Orchestra"Legacy" - Gerald Wilson Orchestra"Alma Adentro: The Puerto Rican Songbook" - Miguel ZenónGOSPEL FIELDBest Gospel/Contemporary Christian Music Performance"Do Everything" - Steven Curtis Chapman"Alive (Mary Magdalene)" - Natalie Grant"Your Love" - Brandon Heath"Jesus" - Le'Andria Johnson"I Lift My Hands" - Chris TomlinBest Gospel Song"Hello Fear" - Kirk Franklin, songwriter (Kirk Franklin)"Sitting With Me" - Erica Campbell, Tina Campbell, Gerald Haddon & Tammi Haddon, songwriters (Mary Mary)"Spiritual" - Donald Lawrence, songwriter (Donald Lawrence & Co. Featuring Blanche McAllister-Dykes)"Trust Me" - Richard Smallwood, songwriter (Richard Smallwood & Vision)"Window" - Canton Jones, songwriter (Canton Jones)Best Contemporary Christian Music Song"Blessings" - Laura Story, songwriter (Laura Story)"Hold Me" - Jamie Grace Harper, Toby McKeehan & Christopher Stevens, songwriters (Jamie Grace Featuring Tobymac)"I Lift My Hands" - Louie Giglio, Matt Maher & Chris Tomlin, songwriters (Chris Tomlin)"Strong Enough" - Matthew West, songwriter (Matthew West)"Your Love" - Brandon Heath & Jason Ingram, songwriters (Brandon Heath)Best Gospel Album"The Love Album" - Kim Burrell"The Journey" - Andraé Crouch"Hello Fear" - Kirk Franklin"Something Big" - Mary Mary"Angel & Chanelle Deluxe Edition" - Trin-I-Tee 5:7Best Contemporary Christian Music Album"Ghosts Upon The Earth" - Gungor"Leaving Eden" - Brandon Heath"The Great Awakening" - Leeland"What If We Were Real" - Mandisa"Black & White" - Royal Tailor"And If Our God Is For Us..." - Chris TomlinLATIN FIELDBest Latin Pop, Rock or Urban Album"Entren Los Que Quieran" - Calle 13"Entre La Ciudad Y El Mar" - Gustavo Galindo"Nuestra" - La Vida Bohème"Not So Commercial" - Los Amigos Invisibles"Drama Y Luz" - ManáBest Regional Mexican or Tejano Album"Bicentenario" - Pepe Aguilar"Orale" - Mariachi Divas De Cindy Shea"Amor A La Musica" - Mariachi Los Arrieros Del Valle"Eres Un Farsante" - Paquita La Del Barrio"Huevos Rancheros" - Joan SebastianBest Banda or Norteño Album"Estare Mejor" - El Güero Y Su Banda Centenario"Intocable 2011" - Intocable"Los Tigres Del Norte And Friends" - Los Tigres Del Norte"El Árbol" - Los Tucanes De Tijuana"No Vengo A Ver Si Puedo... Si Por Que Puedo Vengo" - Michael SalgadoBest Tropical Latin Album"Homenaje A Los Rumberos" - Edwin Bonilla"The Last Mambo" - Cachao"Mongorama" - José Rizo's MongoramaAMERICAN ROOTS FIELDBest Americana Album"Emotional Jukebox" - Linda Chorney"Pull Up Some Dust And Sit Down" - Ry Cooder"Hard Bargain" - Emmylou Harris"Ramble At The Ryman" - Levon Helm"Blessed" - Lucinda WilliamsBest Bluegrass Album"Paper Airplane" - Alison Krauss & Union Station"Reason And Rhyme: Bluegrass Songs By Robert Hunter & Jim Lauderdale" - Jim Lauderdale"Rare Bird Alert" - Steve Martin And The Steep Canyon Rangers"Old Memories: The Songs Of Bill Monroe" - The Del McCoury Band"A Mother's Prayer" - Ralph Stanley"Sleep With One Eye Open" - Chris Thile & Michael DavesBest Blues Album"Low Country Blues" - Gregg Allman"Roadside Attractions" - Marcia Ball"Man In Motion" - Warren Haynes"The Reflection" - Keb Mo"Revelator" - Tedeschi Trucks BandBest Folk Album"Barton Hollow" - The Civil Wars"I'll Never Get Out Of This World Alive" - Steve Earle"Helplessness Blues" - Fleet Foxes"Ukulele Songs" - Eddie Vedder"The Harrow & The Harvest" - Gillian WelchBest Regional Roots Music Album"Can't Sit Down" - C.J. Chenier"Wao Akua" - The Forest Of The Gods"Rebirth Of New Orleans" - Rebirth Brass Band"Grand Isle" - Steve Riley & The Mamou Playboys"Not Just Another Polka" - Jimmy Sturr & His OrchestraREGGAE FIELDBest Reggae Album"Harlem-Kingston Express Live!" - Monty Alexander"Reggae Knights" - Israel Vibration"Revelation Pt 1: The Root Of Life" - Stephen Marley"Wild And Free" - Ziggy Marley"Summer In Kingston" - ShaggyWORLD MUSIC FIELDBest World Music Album"AfroCubism" - AfroCubism"Africa For Africa" - Femi Kuti"Songs From A Zulu Farm" - Ladysmith Black Mambazo"Tassili" - TinariwenCHILDREN'S FIELDBest Children's Album"All About Bullies... Big And Small" - (Various Artists) James Cravero, Gloria Domina, Kevin Mackie, Steve Pullara & Patrick Robinson, producers"Are We There Yet?" - The Papa Hugs Band"Fitness Rock & Roll" - Miss Amy"GulfAlive" - The Banana Plant"I Love: Tom T. Hall's Songs Of Fox Hollow" - (Various Artists) Eric Brace & Peter Cooper, producersSPOKEN WORD FIELDBest Spoken Word Album"Bossypants" - Tina Fey"Fab Fan Memories - The Beatles Bond" - (Various Artists) - Nathan Burbank, Bryan Cumming, Dennis Scott & David Toledo, producers"Hamlet (William Shakespeare)" - Dan Donohue & Various Artists - Orgeon Shakespeare Festival"If You Ask Me (And Of Course You Won't)" - Betty White"The Mark Of Zorro" - Val Kilmer & CastCOMEDY FIELDBest Comedy Album"Alpocalypse" - "Weird Al" Yankovic"Finest Hour" - Patton Oswalt"Hilarious" - Louis C.K."Kathy Griffin: 50 & Not Pregnant" - Kathy Griffin"Turtleneck & Chain" - The Lonely IslandMUSICAL THEATER FIELDBest Musical Theater Album"Anything Goes" - Sutton Foster & Joel Grey, principal soloists; Rob Fisher, James Lowe & Joel Moss, producers (Cole Porter, composer/lyricist) (New Broadway Cast Recording)"The Book Of Mormon" - Josh Gad & Andrew Rannells, principal soloists; Anne Garefino, Robert Lopez, Stephen Oremus, Trey Parker, Scott Rudin & Matt Stone, producers; Robert Lopez, Trey Parker & Matt Stone, composers/lyricists (Original Broadway Cast)"How To Succeed In Business Without Really Trying" - John Larroquette & Daniel Radcliffe, principal soloists; Robert Sher, producer (Frank Loesser, composer/lyricist) (The 2011 Broadway Cast Recording)MUSIC FOR VISUAL MEDIA FIELDBest Compilation Soundtrack for Visual Media"Boardwalk Empire: Volume 1" - (Various Artists)"Burlesque" - Christina Aguilera"Glee: The Music, Volume 4" - (Glee Cast)"Tangled" - (Various Artists)"True Blood: Volume 3" - (Various Artists)Best Score Soundtrack For Visual Media"Black Swan" - Clint Mansell, composer"Harry Potter And The Deathly Hallows Part 2" - Alexandre Desplat, composer"The King's Speech" - Alexandre Desplat, composer"The Shrine" - Ryan Shore, composer"Tron Legacy" - Daft Punk, composersBest Song Written For Visual Media"Born To Be Somebody" (From "Never Say Never") - Diane Warren, songwriter (Justin Bieber)"Christmastime Is Killing Us" (From "Family Guy") - Ron Jones, Seth MacFarlane & Danny Smith, songwriters (Danny Smith, Ron Jones & Seth MacFarlane)"I See The Light" (From "Tangled") - Alan Menken & Glenn Slater, songwriters (Mandy Moore & Zachary Levi)"So Long" (From "Winnie The Pooh") - Zooey Deschanel, songwriter (Zooey Deschanel & M. Ward)"Where The River Goes" (From "Footloose") - Zac Brown, Wyatt Durrette, Drew Pearson & Anne Preven, songwriters (Zac Brown)"You Haven't Seen The Last Of Me" (From "Burlesque") - Diane Warren, songwriter (Cher)COMPOSING/ARRANGING FIELDBest Instrumental Composition"Falling Men" - John Hollenbeck, composer (John Hollenbeck, Daniel Yvinec & Orchestre National de Jazz (ONJ))"Hunting Wabbits 3 (Get Off My Lawn)" - Gordon Goodwin, composer (Gordon Goodwin's Big Phat Band)"I Talk To The Trees" - Randy Brecker, composer (Randy Brecker With DR Big Band)"Life In Eleven" - Béla Fleck & Howard Levy, composers (Béla Fleck & The Flecktones)"Timeline" - Russell Ferrante, composer (Yellowjackets)Best Instrumental Arrangement"All Or Nothing At All" - Peter Jensen, arranger (Randy Brecker With DR Big Band)"In The Beginning" - Clare Fischer, arranger (The Clare Fischer Big Band)"Nasty Dance" - Bob Brookmeyer, arranger (The Vanguard Jazz Orchestra)"Rhapsody In Blue" - Gordon Goodwin, arranger (Gordon Goodwin's Big Phat Band)"Song Without Words" - Carlos Franzetti, arranger (Carlos Franzetti & Allison Brewster Franzetti)Best Instrumental Arrangement Accompanying Vocalist(s)"Ao Mar" - Vince Mendoza, arranger (Vince Mendoza)"Moon Over Bourbon Street" - Rob Mathes, arranger (Sting & The Royal Philharmonic Concert Orchestra)"On Broadway" - Kevin Axt, Ray Brinker, Trey Henry, Christian Jacob & Tierney Sutton, arrangers (The Tierney Sutton Band)"Who Can I Turn To (When Nobody Needs Me)" - Jorge Calandrelli, arranger (Tony Bennett & Queen Latifah)"The Windmills Of Your Mind" - William A. Ross, arranger (Barbra Streisand)PACKAGE FIELDBest Recording Package"Chickenfoot III" - Todd Gallopo, art director (Chickenfoot)"Good Luck & True Love" - Sarah Dodds & Shauna Dodds, art directors (Reckless Kelly)"Rivers And Homes" - Jonathan Dagan, art director (J.Viewz)"Scenes From The Suburbs" - Vincent Morisset, art director (Arcade Fire)"Watch The Throne" - Virgil Abloh, art director (Jay-Z & Kanye West)Best Boxed Or Special Limited Edition Package"The King Of Limbs" - Donald Twain & Zachariah Wildwood, art directors (Radiohead)"The Promise: The Darkness On The Edge Of Town Story" - Dave Bett & Michelle Holme, art directors (Bruce Springsteen)"25th Anniversary Music Box" - Matt Taylor & Ellen Wakayama, art directors (Danny Elfman & Tim Burton)"25 Years" - James Spindler, art director (Sting)"Wingless Angels - Deluxe Edition" - David Gorman, art director (Wingless Angels)ALBUM NOTESBest Album Notes"The Bang Years 1966-1968" - Neil Diamond, album notes writer (Neil Diamond)"The Bristol Sessions, 1927-1928: The Big Bang Of Country Music" - Ted Olson & Tony Russell, album notes writers (Various Artists)"Complete Mythology" - Ken Shipley, album notes writer (Syl Johnson)"Hear Me Howling!: Blues, Ballads & Beyond As Recorded By The San Francisco Bay By Chris Strachwitz In The 1960s" - Adam Machado, album notes writer (Various Artists)"The Music City Story: Street Corner Doo Wop, Raw R&B And Soulful Sounds From Berkeley, California 1950-75" - Alec Palao, album notes writer (Various Artists)HISTORICAL FIELDBest Historical Album"Band On The Run (Paul McCartney Archive Collection - Deluxe Edition)" - Paul McCartney, compilation producer; Sam Okell & Steve Rooke, mastering engineers (Paul McCartney & Wings)"The Bristol Sessions, 1927-1928: The Big Bang Of Country Music" - Christopher C. King & Ted Olson, compilation producers; Christopher C. King & Chris Zwarg, mastering engineers (Various Artists)"Complete Mythology" - Tom Lunt, Rob Sevier & Ken Shipley, compilation producers; Jeff Lipton, mastering engineer (Syl Johnson)"Hear Me Howling!: Blues, Ballads & Beyond As Recorded By The San Francisco Bay By Chris Strachwitz In The 1960s" - Chris Strachwitz, compilation producer; Mike Cogan, mastering engineer (Various Artists)"Young Man With The Big Beat: The Complete '56 Elvis Presley Masters" - Ernst Mikael Jorgensen, compilation producer; Vic Anesini, mastering engineer (Elvis Presley)PRODUCTION, NON CLASSICAL FIELDBest Engineered Album, Non-Classical"Follow Me Down" - Brandon Bell & Gary Paczosa, engineers; Sangwook "Sunny" Nam & Doug Sax, mastering engineers (Sarah Jarosz)"The Harrow & The Harvest" - Matt Andrews, engineer; Stephen Marcussen, mastering engineer (Gillian Welch)"Music Is Better Than Words" - Rich Breen & Frank Filipetti, engineers; Bob Ludwig, mastering engineer (Seth MacFarlane)"The Next Right Thing" - Kevin Killen, Brendan Muldowney & John Shyloski, engineers; John Shyloski, mastering engineer (Seth Glier)"Paper Airplane" - Mike Shipley, engineer; Brad Blackwood, mastering engineer (Alison Krauss & Union Station)Producer Of The Year, Non-ClassicalDanger Mouse - "Danger Mouse & Daniele Luppi Present Rome" (Gilda Buttá, Luciano Ciccaglioni, Gegé Munari, Dario Rosciglione, Antonello Vannucchi et al) (A); "Meyrin Fields EP" (Broken Bells) (S)Paul Epworth - "Call It What You Want" (Foster The People) (T); "I Would Do Anything For You" (Foster The People) (T); "I'll Be Waiting" (Adele) (T); "Life On The Nickel" (Foster The People) (T); "No One's Gonna Love You" (Cee-Lo Green) (S); "Rolling In The Deep" (Adele) (T)The Smeezingtons - "Doo-Wops & Hooligans" (Bruno Mars) (A); "If I Was You (OMG)" (Far East Movement Featuring Snoop Dogg) (T); "Lighters" (Bad Meets Evil Featuring Bruno Mars) (T); "Mirror" (Lil Wayne Featuring Bruno Mars) (T); "Rocketeer" (Far East Movement Featuring Ryan Tedder of One Republic) (T)Ryan Tedder - "Brighter Than The Sun" (Colbie Caillat) (T); "Favorite Song" (Colbie Caillat Featuring Common) (T); "I Remember Me" (Jennifer Hudson) (T); "I Was Here" (Beyoncé) (T); "Not Over You" (Gavin DeGraw) (S); "#1Nite" (One Night) (Cobra Starship) (S); "Rumour Has It" (Adele) (T); "Sweeter" (Gavin DeGraw) (T); "Who's That Boy" (Demi Lovato Featuring Dev) (T)Butch Vig - "Wasting Light" (Foo Fighters) (A)Best Remixed Recording, Non-Classical"Cinema" (Skrillex Remix) - Sonny Moore, remixer (Benny Benassi)"Collide" (Afrojack Remix) - Afrojack, remixer (Leona Lewis)"End Of Line" (Photek Remix) - Photek, remixer (Daft Punk)"Only Girl (In The World)" (Rosabel Club Mix) - Abel Aguilera & Ralphi Rosario, remixers (Rihanna)"Rope" (Deadmau5 Mix) - Deadmau5, remixer (Foo Fighters)SURROUND SOUND FIELDBest Surround Sound Album"An Evening With Dave Grusin" - Frank Filipetti & Eric Schilling, surround mix engineers; Frank Filipetti, surround mastering engineer; Phil Ramone, surround producer (Various Artists)"Grace For Drowning" - Steven Wilson, surround mix engineer; Paschal Byrne, surround mastering engineer; Steven Wilson, surround producer (Steven Wilson)"Kind" - Morten Lindberg, surround mix engineer; Morten Lindberg, surround mastering engineer; Morten Lindberg, surround producer (Kjetil Almenning, Ensemble 96 & Nidaros String Quartet)"Layla And Other Assorted Love Songs (Super Deluxe Edition)" - Elliot Scheiner, surround mix engineer; Bob Ludwig, surround mastering engineer; Bill Levenson & Elliot Scheiner, surround producers (Derek & The Dominos)"Spohr: String Sextet In C Major, Op. 140 & Nonet In F Major, Op. 31" - Andreas Spreer, surround mix engineer; Andreas Spreer, surround mastering engineer; Andreas Spreer, surround producer (Camerata Freden)PRODUCTION, CLASSICAL FIELDBest Engineered Album, Classical"Aldridge: Elmer Gantry" - Byeong-Joon Hwang & John Newton, engineers; Jesse Lewis, mastering engineer (William Boggs, Keith Phares, Patricia Risley, Vale Rideout, Frank Kelley, Heather Buck, Florentine Opera Chorus & Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra)"Glazunov: Complete Concertos" - Richard King, engineer (José Serebrier, Alexey Serov, Wen-Sinn Yang, Alexander Romanovsky, Rachel Barton Pine, Marc Chisson & Russian National Orchestra)"Mackey: Lonely Motel - Music From Slide" - Tom Lazarus & Bill Maylone, engineers; Joe Lambert, mastering engineer (Rinde Eckert, Steven Mackey & Eighth Blackbird)"Rachmaninov: Piano Concertos Nos. 3 & 4" - Arne Akselberg, engineer (Leif Ove Andsnes, Antonio Pappano & London Symphony Orchestra)"Weinberg: Symphony No. 3 & Suite No. 4 From 'The Golden Key'" - Torbjörn Samuelsson, engineer (Thord Svedlund & Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra)Producer Of The Year, ClassicalBlanton Alspaugh - "Aldridge: Elmer Gantry" (William Boggs, Keith Phares, Patricia Risley, Vale Rideout, Frank Kelley, Heather Buck, Florentine Opera Chorus & Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra); "Beethoven: Complete Piano Sonatas" (Peter Takács); "Osterfield: Rocky Streams" (Paul Osterfield, Todd Waldecker & Various Artists)Manfred Eicher - "Bach: Concertos & Sinfonias For Oboe; Ich Hatte Viel Bekümmernis" (Heinz Holliger, Eric Höbarth & Camerata Bern); "Hymns & Prayers" (Gidon Kremer & Kremerata Baltica); "Manto & Madrigals" (Thomas Zehetmair & Ruth Killius); "Songs Of Ascension" (Meredith Monk & Vocal Ensemble, Todd Reynolds Quartet, The M6 & Montclair State University Singers); "Tchaikovsky/Kissine: Piano Trios" (Gidon Kremer, Giedre Dirvanauskaite & Khatia Buniatishvili); "A Worcester Ladymass" (Trio Mediaeval)David Frost - "Chicago Symphony Orchestra Brass Live" (Chicago Symphony Orchestra Brass); "Mackey: Lonely Motel - Music From Slide" (Rinde Eckert, Steven Mackey & Eighth Blackbird); "Prayers & Alleluias" (Kenneth Dake); "Sharon Isbin & Friends" - Guitar Passions (Sharon Isbin & Various Artists)Peter Rutenberg - "Brahms: Ein Deutsches Requiem, Op. 45" (Patrick Dupré Quigley, James K. Bass, Seraphic Fire & Professional Choral Institute); "The Vanishing Nordic Chorale" (Philip Spray & Musik Ekklesia)Judith Sherman - "Adams: Son Of Chamber Symphony; String Quartet" (John Adams, St. Lawrence String Quartet & International Contemporary Ensemble); "Capricho Latino" (Rachel Barton Pine); "85th Birthday Celebration" (Claude Frank); "Insects & Paper Airplanes - Chamber Music Of Lawrence Dillon" (Daedalus Quartet & Benjamin Hochman); "Midnight Frolic - The Broadway Theater Music Of Louis A. Hirsch" (Rick Benjamin & Paragon Ragtime Orchestra); "Notable Women - Trios By Today's Female Composers" (Lincoln Trio); "The Soviet Experience, Vol. 1 - String Quartets By Dmitri Shostakovich & His Contemporaries" (Pacifica Quartet); "Speak!" (Anthony De Mare); "State Of The Art" - The American Brass Quintet At 50 (The American Brass Quintet); "Steve Reich: WTC 9/11; Mallet Quartet; Dance Patterns (Kronos Quartet, Steve Reich Musicians & So Percussion); "Winging It - Piano Music Of John Corigliano" (Ursula Oppens)CLASSICAL FIELDBest Orchestral Performance"Bowen: Symphonies Nos. 1 & 2" - Andrew Davis, conductor (BBC Philharmonic)"Brahms: Symphony No. 4" - Gustavo Dudamel, conductor (Los Angeles Philharmonic)"Haydn: Symphonies 104, 88 & 101" - Nicholas McGegan, conductor (Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra)"Henze: Symphonies Nos. 3-5" - Marek Janowski, conductor (Rundfunk-Sinfonieorchester Berlin)"Martinu: The 6 Symphonies" - Jirí Belohlávek, conductor (BBC Symphony Orchestra)Best Opera Recording"Adams: Doctor Atomic" - Alan Gilbert, conductor; Meredith Arwady, Sasha Cooke, Richard Paul Fink, Gerald Finley, Thomas Glenn & Eric Owens; Jay David Saks, producer (Metropolitan Opera Orchestra; Metropolitan Opera Chorus)"Britten: Billy Budd" - Mark Elder, conductor; John Mark Ainsley, Phillip Ens, Jacques Imbrailo, Darren Jeffery, Iain Paterson & Matthew Rose; James Whitbourn, producer (London Philharmonic Orchestra; Glyndebourne Chorus)"Rautavaara: Kaivos" - Hannu Lintu, conductor; Jaakko Kortekangas, Hannu Niemelä, Johanna Rusanen-Kartano & Mati Turi; Seppo Siirala, producer (Tampere Philharmonic Orchestra; Kaivos Chorus)"Verdi: La Traviata" - Antonio Pappano, conductor; Joseph Calleja, Renée Fleming & Thomas Hampson; James Whitbourn, producer (Orchestra of the Royal Opera House; Royal Opera Chorus)"Vivaldi: Ercole Sul Termodonte" - Fabio Biondi, conductor; Romina Basso, Patrizia Ciofi, Diana Damrau, Joyce DiDonato, Vivica Genaux, Philippe Jaroussky, Topi Lehtipuu & Rolando Villazón; Daniel Zalay, producer (Europa Galante; Coro Da Camera Santa Cecilia Di Borgo San Lorenzo)Best Choral Performance"Beyond All Mortal Dreams - American A Cappella" - Stephen Layton, conductor (Choir Of Trinity College Cambridge)"Brahms: Ein Deutsches Requiem, Op. 45" - Patrick Dupré Quigley, conductor; James K. Bass, chorus master (Justin Blackwell, Scott Allen Jarrett, Paul Max Tipton & Teresa Wakim; Professional Choral Institute & Seraphic Fire)"Kind" - Kjetil Almenning, conductor (Nidaros String Quartet; Ensemble 96)"Light & Gold" - Eric Whitacre, conductor (Christopher Glynn & Hila Plitmann; The King's Singers, Laudibus, Pavão Quartet & The Eric Whitacre Singers)"The Natural World Of Pelle Gudmundsen-Holmgreen" - Paul Hillier, conductor (Ars Nova Copenhagen)Best Small Ensemble Performance"Frank: Hilos" - Gabriela Lena Frank; ALIAS Chamber Ensemble"The Kingdoms Of Castille" - Richard Savino, conductor; El Mundo"Mackey: Lonely Motel - Music From Slide" - Rinde Eckert & Steven Mackey; Eighth Blackbird"A Seraphic Fire Christmas" - Patrick Dupré Quigley, conductor; Seraphic Fire"Sound The Bells!" - The Bay BrassBest Classical Instrumental Solo"Chinese Recorder Concertos - East Meets West" - Lan Shui, conductor; Michala Petri (Copenhagen Philharmonic)"Rachmaninov: Piano Concerto No. 2 In C Minor, Op. 18; Rhapsody On A Theme Of Paganini" - Yuja Wang (Claudio Abbado; Mahler Chamber Orchestra)"Rachmaninov: Piano Concertos Nos. 3 & 4" - Leif Ove Andsnes (Antonio Pappano; London Symphony Orchestra)"Schwantner: Concerto For Percussion & Orchestra" - Giancarlo Guerrero, conductor; Christopher Lamb (Nashville Symphony); Track from: "Schwantner: Chasing Light...""Winging It - Piano Music Of John Corigliano" - Ursula OppensBest Classical Vocal Solo"Diva Divo" - Joyce DiDonato (Kazushi Ono; Orchestre De L'Opéra National De Lyon; Choeur De L'Opéra National De Lyon)"Grieg/Thommessen: Veslemøy Synsk" - Marianne Beate Kielland (Nils Anders Mortensen)"Handel: Cleopatra" - Natalie Dessay (Emmanuelle Haïm; Le Concert D'Astrée)"Purcell: O Solitude" - Andreas Scholl (Stefano Montanari; Christophe Dumaux; Accademia Bizantina)"Three Baroque Tenors" - Ian Bostridge (Bernard Labadie; Mark Bennett, Andrew Clarke, Sophie Daneman, Alberto Grazzi, Jonathan Gunthorpe, Benjamin Hulett & Madeline Shaw; The English Concert)Best Contemporary Classical Composition"Aldridge, Robert: Elmer Gantry" - Robert Aldridge & Herschel Garfein"Crumb, George: The Ghosts Of Alhambra" - George Crumb; Track from: "Complete Crumb Edition, Vol. 15""Friedman, Jefferson: String Quartet No. 3" - Jefferson Friedman; Track from: "Jefferson Friedman: Quartets""Mackey, Steven: Lonely Motel - Music From Slide" - Steven Mackey"Ruders, Poul: Piano Concerto No. 2" - Poul Ruders; Track from: "Music Of Poul Ruders, Vol. 6"MUSIC VIDEO FIELDBest Short Form Music Video"Rolling In The Deep" - Adele; Sam Brown, video director; Hannah Chandler, video producer"Yes I Know" - Memory Tapes; Eric Epstein, video director; Eric Epstein, video producer"All Is Not Lost" - OK Go; Itamar Kubovy, Damian Kulash Jr & Trish Sie, video directors; Shirley Moyers, video producer"Lotus Flower" - Radiohead; Garth Jennings, video director; Garth Jennings, video producer"First Of The Year (Equinox)" - Skrillex; Tony Truand, video director; Noah Klein, video producer"Perform This Way" - "Weird Al" Yankovic; "Weird Al" Yankovic, video director; Cisco Newman, video producerBest Long Form Music Video"I Am...World Tour" - Beyoncé; Ed Burke, Frank Gatson Jr. & Beyoncé Knowles, video directors; Beyoncé Knowles & Camille Yorrick, video producers"Foo Fighters: Back And Forth" - Foo Fighters; James Moll, video director; James Moll & Nigel Sinclair, video producers"Talihina Sky: The Story Of Kings Of Leon" - Kings Of Leon; Stephen C. Mitchell, video director; Casey McGrath, video producer"Beats, Rhymes & Life: The Travels Of A Tribe Called Quest" - A Tribe Called Quest; Michael Rapaport, video director; Robert Benavides, Debra Koffler, Eric Matthies, Frank Mele, Edward Parks & A Tribe Called Quest, video producers"Nine Types Of Light" - TV On The Radio; Tunde Adebimpe, video director; Michelle An & Braj, video producersIt's the throwback '60s style as much as the story lines that has made a success. The series, which enters its fifth season in 2012, ushered in a ladylike trend in fashion that has reverberated all the way to the Paris runways and inspired a collaboration with retail chain , and a book and collection for the show's costume designer Janie Bryant. So is it any wonder that the big three networks are looking for their own fashion gold? Many of this season's new shows, whether they be contemporary or retro, are amping up the style quotient in a big way. Here's a rundown. Thursdays at 8 p.m. on . Premieres Thursday.FOR THE RECORD: TV style: In the Sept. 18 Image section, an article about new fall TV shows and style incorrectly said that "Mad Men" costume designer Janie Bryant had an HSN collection. Last year, Bryant had a collection, Janie Bryant MOD, on . — Costume designer: Roemehl Hawkins, who started her career as an intern with L.A. designer Richard Tyler.Setup: This new take on the campy, 1970s action series is set in present-day Miami with three new angels.What to look for: Fashion from high-end designers such as , , and ; designer name-dropping in the dialogue; and wacky Angel disguises.Fun fact: Hawkins uses her creative license in an upcoming episode, dressing the Angels in re-creations of prison costumes from the original series.Biggest challenge: Scoring the hottest fashion items. "That Alexander Wang silver loafer I was following in Vogue for months. When it finally landed in my office, it was like light shining down from heaven on that shoe."Real-world fashion potential: Good, at least for the kind of women who aspire to look like they live in Miami. "When I was working on I had women from Oklahoma calling my cellphone and asking me what kind of jeans ] was wearing," Hawkins said.Sundays at 10 p.m. on ABC. Premieres Sept. 25Costume designer: Ane Crabtree, also the costume designer for the F/X series Setup: series set in 1963 follows the glamorous adventures of a Pan Am crew.What to look for: Retro 1960s fashions inspired by everything from the Kennedys to Sears catalogs.Fun fact: Crabtree based the crew's uniforms on L.A. designer Don Loper's original designs for Pan Am, but she raised the armholes and slimmed the skirts to make them better-fitting. The original Pan Am blue was too gray when they tested it on-screen, so the color was tweaked.Biggest challenge: Transcontinental story lines — Rio de Janeiro, Berlin and London in one episode, for example. And finding actors with curves. "I tell the boys and girls, don't work out! A little bit of softness is good."Secret source: Right to the Moon Alice Vintage Clothing, a 20,000-foot barn full of clothing in Cooks Falls, N.Y.With mid-priced collections as upscale-looking and lavishly detailed as those on the New York runways for fall, who needs to pay top dollar for fashion?So much of the excitement during the New York Fashion Week shows that wrapped up on Thursday was about the so-called advanced contemporary category of labels that cost less than high-end designer collections without sacrificing style. Among those creating a buzz: Rag & Bone, , , , , Theyskens Theory and even the J. Crew Collection. (The entry price for advanced contemporary collections is about $295, and the most expensive pieces are around $1,000, which is closer to the entry price for high-end designer collections.) "These are the designers of the future," says Stephanie Solomon, fashion director of Bloomingdale's. "When you think of the old guard, of , and , as much as I respect them, they are not spring chickens anymore. These designers are going to usurp them. And they are making clothes with beautiful quality, innovative fabrics and silhouettes. In the future, I envision an entire level of our store based on these up-and-coming, talented designers."These more affordable, accessible lines offer head-to-toe dressing, with accessories and outerwear. And they hit on all of the trends seen this week, including sleek, minimalist tailoring; Asian influences; black-and-white graphic schemes; and bright color-blocking. Key pieces for a fall wardrobe? A pair of statement pants in a colorful jacquard or print and with a tapered silhouette, worn over a pair of pumps (Manolo Blahnik for J. Crew perhaps?); a shift dress or a pencil skirt that hits below the knee; and a fun swing coat or fur accessory in an eye-catching texture and hue.We saw the return of the suit (albeit a nontraditional sort of suit), including the camel and cream color-blocked karate jacket belted over trousers at 3.1 Phillip Lim, the wrap-front blazer and black jeans at Helmut Lang, and the pink schoolboy blazer and pants at J. Crew. In addition, sweater dresses made a comeback at Kimberly Ovitz and the Rachel Zoe Collection.The J. Crew Collection, which is slightly more expensive than the basic J. Crew offerings, is the chain store's version of advanced contemporary. And it is looking darn good.Creative director Jenna Lyons and head woman's designer Tom Mora have ratcheted up the sophistication level, offering more tailored looks in edgier fabrics. Nordic sweaters topped tinsel tweed, python or pleated-leather skirts, and pants in metallic jacquards or scarf-print silks were paired with the pointy-toed Manolo Blahniks. Color-blocked clutches and totes trimmed in curly lamb fur rounded out the picture.Burch's collection was more polished than ever, full of ladylike, embroidered tweed jackets and skirts, tulle and chiffon dresses with organza flower appliques, crinkled leather jackets and structured frame bags with plastic paillette and tortoise details.There was a lot of eye candy — rows of pearls on the collar and cuffs of a cardigan jacket and matching pencil skirt with organza eyelet hem, jeweled flower buttons on a gold lamé coat and sequins dusting a houndstooth plaid skirt.Rag & Bone designers Marcus Wainwright and David Neville are also proving to be a formidable force on the New York fashion scene. Their fall collection was English countryside-meets-the-Raj, with layers upon layers of rich-looking pieces, including motorcycle jacket-tailcoat hybrids, jersey dhoti pants, tweed wrap skirts and coppery Lurex knit sweaters, plus all the must-have accessories (such as herringbone platform riding boots) that keep fans coming back to the brand.Stylist-turned-designer Rachel Zoe was inspired by the London rock 'n' roll scene of the late 1960s, and her collection was a balance of the glam and the wearable, with all the Hollywood entrance-making maxi dresses and shaggy faux furs that fans have come to expect from Zoe, alongside flared trouser suits and velvet tuxedos, gaucho jeans and melange sweater dresses.Zoe's line is barely a year old, but is well on its way to being a success. Come fall, it will be in 300 stores. Another advanced contemporary star is born.NEW YORK -- , New York Fashion Week's reigning rock star, showed his spring-summer 2013 collection Saturday afternoon. And there was more than one unforgettable runway moment.The inspiration: Urban uniforms turned animalistic. The look: Fierce but controlled. Leather is already everywhere for fall, but Wang gave it a new lease on life for spring. It was all about boxy silhouettes with surgical slashes revealing the body and bringing to mind animal markings. (In a twist on the now-ubiquitous color-blocking, Wang called the technique "leather-blocking.") Leather jackets, T-shirts and shift dresses had cut-outs sutured together with barely visible fish line. There were also crisp patch pocket shirts over white Bermuda shorts, zip-front jackets and dresses, rubberized twill utility parkas, sculpted metallic cable neck halters, spongy knits and knee-high sandal-boots, which are starting to look like a big trend. Then, for a spectacular finale, there was a black light effect that literally made models glow in the dark.The scene: This season's biggest paparazzi moment so far was on the runway, not off. Model Liberty Ross, who was caught by surprise like everyone else by director Rupert Sanders' fling with Kristen Stewart, strutted her stuff and looked darn good doing it.The verdict: Brilliant. All the fantasy required of a great fashion show, but with wearable (and affordable) clothes.ALSO: NEW YORK -- It was one of the most eagerly anticipated shows of the first few days of New York Fashion Week. Joseph , winner of the 2011 CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund Award and a rising star on the New York fashion scene since launching his collection in 2008, has a fan base that includes Michelle Williams and . He showed his spring 2013 collection at a downtown photography studio on Saturday night. And not even thunderstorms or the threat of tornadoes could keep the fashion crowd away.The inspiration: The 1992 film "Orlando," (which starred ), based on the book by Virginia Woolf about an English courtier who wakes up one day transformed into a woman. The story, like the collection, traveled through time and place, from the 17th century to the present, Elizabethan England to imperial Russia to the exotic alleys of Constantinople.The look. Rich hippie. Haute work wear meets baroque Bedouin. Utilitarian-looking railroad-stripe or khaki cotton jackets with gathered peplums and two-way zipper details. Deco beaded silk pants. Blazers and halter dresses with gold fringe neck scarves attached. Macrame fringe skirts. Draped "scarf dresses" with scalloped embroidery or rich crystal embellishment. The scene: Star-studded. Jessica Chastain, and Mamie Gummer (actress and daughter of ) were all sitting front row, dressed in Altuzarra, of course.The verdict: Stunning eye candy. Complex, special clothes executed beautifully. The Paris-born, New York-based Altuzarra deserves all the buzz he's getting.ALSO: NEW YORK -- The L.A.-based designer, who has made wedding gowns for a who's who of Hollywood, including and , showed her spring-summer 2013 collection during New York Fashion Week on Sunday. Monique Lhuillier also gave guests a sneak preview of her first shoe collection, which launches for spring and includes elegant black cage booties.The inspiration: Life of the sea -- birds, rainbow-colored fish, sunlight on water and the luminescence of glowing waves.The look: Mermaid chic. Fluid and colorful. Gorgeous digital prints of cranes and fish. Peplum tops worn with cigarette pants, and dresses with peplum details. Gowns with sea glass-like embroidery or fluid, fluttering pleats hugging the curves. And some surprises, like a great-looking, berry-colored sculpted leather dress. The scene: Low key. The show was held under the tents at against a beautiful backdrop painted in seaside hues. and Odette Annable were in the front row. So was Lhuillier's husband and CEO Tom Bugbee, who came straight from , where he managed to catch the USC-Syracuse football game earlier in the day. Lhuillier and Bugbee met while he was pursuing his MBA at USC.The verdict: Lovely. Compelling prints and flattering feminine silhouettes. Lhuillier excels in making clothes that don't overshadow the women wearing them.ALSO: Actress is best known for playing Elena Gilbert on the hit CW show "The Vampire Diaries," but she garnered some much-deserved sartorial nods at the recent Toronto Film Festival. Dobrev made appearances alongside costar Emma Watson to promote their new film, "The Perks Of Being A Wallflower," slated to open Sept. 20.Dobrev's looks ranged from formal gowns to flirty shorts ensembles. At the film's premiere, Dobrev looked like a princess in a Monique Lhuillier strapless, sequin embellished gown with full hem. She chose a sexier silhouette for a party at Soho House, wearing a red dress with a plunging neckline and a peplum waist. She wore another Saab cocktail dress with sequins and lace for a CAA bash. The brunet actress mixed things up when she stopped by the Lia Sophia IT Lounge Portrait Studio in a matching paint spattered blouse and shorts ensemble from the Monique Lhuillier resort 2013 collection. She accessorized with a Lia Sophia Cirque ring and royal purple evening bag and finished the look with a pair of Manolo Blahnik for Monique Lhuillier ankle strap, orange heels.Dobrev's paint spatter pattern is a fun print to integrate into your wardrobe. Get a similar look with the from Farfetch.com for $176, from Revolveclothing.com for $195, or pair a paint-spattered piece with solid pieces. Try mixing the from Madison for $163.50 with a pair of cigarette leg pants.Add some sparkle with Dobrev's for $38 (available through a representative). And for a similar pair of ankle strap heels try the for $59.95 from Endless.com or the color-blocked from Ninewest.com for $99.ALSO: Follow Jenn Harris on or Top photos, from left: Religion splatter dress / Farfetch.com; Foley + Corinna splatter dress / Revolveclothing.com; Alexander Wang doodle print top / Madison. Bottom photos, from left: Lia Sophia Cirque ring / Lia Sophia; Pleaser women's Domina 402 pump / Endless.com; Free Spirit pump / Ninewest.com. PARIS -- It was a 1970s, rich-hippie, ladies-of-the-canyon moment on the runway at Monday night, when designer Hedi Slimane -- who has been working primarily as a photographer in Los Angeles since leaving his post at in 2007 -- staged his debut runway show for Saint Laurent Paris. (Slimane renamed the brand and redesigned the logo shortly after being hired earlier this year, and has said he will be designing the collection from L.A.)But the spirit of its founder, who died in 2008, was still very much alive in this collection, which with ' debut at Dior on Friday, was a defining moment of the Paris season, as these two designers attempt to forge a new future for French fashion.The scene: It was a small show for such a big brand, which is owned by Group, probably only 500 people. Yves Saint Laurent's partner was there lending his support, as was YSL muse Betty Catroux. Several designers were in the house as well, including , Diane Von Furstenberg, and Alber Elbaz, who took a turn designing for YSL before landing at . (Needless to say, Tom Ford and Stefano Pilati, who also tried their hands at YSL but did not find favor with Berge, were not present.) Jessica Chastain, face of the new YSL fragrance, was front row in a vintage YSL frock from L.A. store Decades. And was also there.Slimane, who recently had a photography exhibition at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles, staged his show in a black box-like space at the Grand Palais. Enormous mechanized black shades on the ceiling tilted toward the runway to signal the beginning of the show, as lights swung into position. Then the music started thumping, music by Junior Kimbrough, edited by Daft Punk, according to the program notes.It was dramatic all right, almost like the beginning of a concert. And indeed rock 'n' roll performers have been favorite subjects for Slimane's photos, and avid fans of his menswear while he was at Dior Homme.The look: ladies-of-the-canyon rich hippie. Skinny tailoring reminiscent of what Slimane did at Dior Homme. Tuxedo jackets and slim leather jeans. Maxi-dresses with billowy sleeves. Sequin evening jackets. Suede dress with front lacing. Witchy woman capes trimmed in feathers, lace and sequins. A spectacular gold chain fringe maxi skirt. Fringe pendant necklaces. Every look was accessorized with a wide brim hat.The verdict: Respectful of the brand. More like a greatest hits album than a revolutionary new sound. Slimane will surely turn up the volume on his own vision more in the coming seasons. In the meantime, these clothes are going to look great in L.A.ALSO:You've seen them at the mall, on the red carpet and maybe even in your own closet: booties and boots that hug the foot, are snug against the ankle, maybe encase the leg to the knee or above — but leave the toes peeking out from a small opening, exposed to the elements. What was once a demure peek-a-boo detail on pumps worn by boundary-pushing 1940s pinup girls has evolved into what often looks like the foot and ankle have been mummified, with the toes forgotten.What gives? It's partly sex, partly status and partly runway style pushing into the mass market.Like the bust area, toes are generally seen as an erotic zone (toe cleavage anyone?), and the peep toe on a shoe is like a low-cut blouse that exposes cleavage. "There seems to be a lot of circumstantial evidence that people think of feet as a smaller version of the body," says Valerie Steele, director of the Museum at the Fashion Institute of Technology. "The term 'toe cleavage' is related to breasts, and peep toe, as its name indicates, is like a type of peep show — a way of exposing part of yourself."But the exposed toe had less risqué beginnings in modern Western civilization, according to Elizabeth Semmelhack, senior curator of the Bata Shoe Museum in Toronto. The first time modern European women dared to show their toes was after the French Revolution, when the Neoclassical style influenced women to wear sandals to look like Grecian goddesses, she says.Open-toe shoes made their way back into style after the Depression with a rise in the influence of beach culture. Sandals evolved into peep-toe evening shoes, a style that stayed strong through the 1940s. They resurfaced in fashion during the 1970s and more recently as tough, Frankenstein-goes-on-holiday, platform booties on the Alexander Wang spring 2009 runway. Since then, the style has been ubiquitous on runways and in shoe aisles alike.Now it's fall and the footwear sitting in stores should be more suede and shearling than stiletto and open toe. But peep-toe boots still dominate sales floors, and toes will still be out in full force regardless of wind, rain or cooler weather.The Kardashians could be partly to blame for perpetuating this peep-toe boot trend in a season when it doesn't seem to make sense. The reality-star sisters are seen in paparazzi pictures and on magazine covers wearing chunky peep-toe booties with second-skin skirts and ruffled blouses or strong-shouldered blazers. Sure, the juxtaposition of a shoe-boot against a thin ankle elongates and slims the whole leg, but such extravagant and impractical footwear also indicates that the wearer doesn't walk much farther than from her chauffeured car to dinner."We're seeing a lot of winter boots with an open toe and towering high heels," Steele says. "This has status implications, implying the message that you get out of the car and get onto the red carpet. You're not trudging through mud and snow. There is a definite combination of sex and status. These boots have a look of power."For some, there is a simpler explanation for the peep toe's appeal. "It's a sandal and pump wrapped into one. That's what makes it so popular," says Steve Madden, whose footwear company is quick to jump on and reinterpret the shoe style du jour. The "two-fer" shoe gives a customer a little more bang for her buck in addition to the sex appeal of exposed toes.A peep toe can be hard to wear. Sometimes the foot slides down and the toes stick out of the shoe, creating an unsightly "eagle talon" effect. A foot pad insert under the ball of the foot or a foam insert installed by a cobbler can help. Of course, attractive, pedicured toes are a must too.Whether or not their feet were made for a peep toe, women are continuing to buy and wear these shoes even as they become an almost cartoonish form of footwear with over-the-knee lengths, Timberland-style uppers and combat boot details. Online retailer Endless.com has seen a large bump in sales of peep-toe boots over the last four years. This season a big seller for them is an olive green suede, military-inspired lace-up boot by Giuseppe Zanotti that can go "Jenny From the Block" as easily as it can be sleek and sophisticated."Boots are the part of clothing that we seem to be playing with the most," Steele says. "Most clothes now are quite bourgeois, but shoes can be quite out there. Just think of all those photographers at fashion week scrambling on the ground for shoe shots!" The toes are clearly the current erotic zone in fashion, even if that means that there will be a lot of cold feet out there this fall.Some babies have all the luck. The recent birth of Skyler Morrison Berman, for example, inspired a series of baby gifts that could have been lifted from the pages of Vogue: a custom-made sweater the size of a tea cozy from Angela , a child-size china setting from and a shearling snuggly from Georgina Chapman.Of course, when Mom is — celebrity stylist-turned-reality TV star-turned-designer — and the gift-givers are members of fashion's reigning class, glamour is expected. On a recent sunny afternoon, lounging by the pool of his Los Angeles home with his nanny by his side, Skyler is wearing a blue striped Petit Bateau "1940s-style swimsuit," as Zoe describes it, and brown Bonpoint fisherman's sandals. It's a milestone, the first day the 3-month-old wears shoes, though he already has more than a dozen pairs in his nursery, including loafers.Yet the new mother makes it sound as if life in Zoe land isn't quite as glamorous as it used to be. "My whole day is about whether my son poops or not," she says."The next thing you know, we'll be moving to Brentwood and I'll be driving a minivan."Doubtful.Zoe is wearing a pair of flared tuxedo pants so long they nearly sweep the floor, and a sparkly cropped navy blue jacket. Both items are from her new line, the Rachel Zoe fashion collection landing in stores this month, and they allow her to exude a sort of career-woman vibe, to play the role of "execubitch." (And don't worry — that particular term is a Zoe-ism.)Zoe's career trajectory has been impressive, going from no-name stylist to red carpet tastemaker, earning $6,000 a day, with clients including , and . The next step was full-fledged celebritydom, with a reality show, line and, now, a fashion collection. And she's done it all in a decade.The fall collection, with prices that range from $250 to $700, oozes '70s style, which should come as no surprise to fans of Zoe's trademark flowy peasant dress/oversized sunglasses look. But don't expect "bohemian glamour," Zoe says. "I wanted androgyny and the powerful woman look. I've grown up a lot. I wanted an amazing white tuxedo for under $1,000 and a cocktail dress for under $500."Most of the pieces are quite tailored and have a vintage vibe. "It's very -y and -y and Bianca Jagger-y, with a splash of sequins, a little , thrown in," Zoe says.There are trouser suits with flared legs, plunge-front blouses that tie at the neck, leather-trimmed capes with toggle closures, faux fur jackets, disco-short dresses with tiers of chiffon or splashes of sequins, and diaphanous chiffon maxi-dresses. Accessories include 51/2-inch platform pumps (not for the faint of heart) and chain-handle clutch bags.The collection — backed by LF USA (a division of Li & Fung, a Hong Kong-based global sourcing giant and producer of clothing, toys and furniture) — is selling in "contemporary departments" alongside clothes by designers such as and . (It's been reported that Zoe could earn as much as $20 million from the line.) bought the collection for all 41 of its stores, and teased the launch with an "Oh So Zoe" Facebook challenge that let users style virtual looks and share them with friends. is planning to devote the windows of its store at 59th Street and Lexington Avenue in Manhattan to the collection."In entertainment, they talk about people who can act, sing and dance as being triple threats. Rachel Zoe is a triple threat in fashion. She has a great eye, a larger-than-life personality and a whole entertainment world built around her," said Catherine Moellering, executive vice president of New York-based trend forecasting firm Tobe Report.Zoe's entree into fashion follows the direction in which the industry has been heading for some time, putting a premium on charisma over craft. "In terms of a business model, or Rachel Zoe would be the model for fashion today," Moellering said. "Instead of being known for an iconic top or dress, they are iconic personalities themselves, which allows them to be more flexible in how they branch out into other categories."Although Zoe's design studio is in New York, Rachel Zoe Inc. is headquartered in Los Angeles. (She plans to fly back and forth.) Her husband, Rodger Berman, is president of the company, which has different spaces for styling services, product development, digital media (including production of her daily style blog at RachelZoe.com) and the stylist's fashion archives. There are about 15 employees at the company, including design director Eric Sartori.Those archives must hold a lot of her clothes because the walk-in closet at her house isn't nearly as stuffed as one might expect. There are purses and Birkin bags tucked into tidy cubbies. And hanging on a peg is her newest purchase, a vintage , bamboo-handled bucket bag so large it's easy to wonder if Zoe could fit inside. A rolling rack in the center of the closet is filled with pieces from her fall collection, which she has been wearing out and about recently, in full view of the paparazzi tracking her every move from nail salon to posh baby boutique.Zoe knows how to play the game."How about wearing my white tuxedo dress?" she says, plucking the double-breasted "Cameron" style from the rack. "When I saw that picture, I froze. For the first time in my life, I got a taste of what it feels like to a designer when someone wears their clothes."Lopez's stylist, whom Zoe says she does not know, pulled the dress from the showroom, and Lopez was photographed wearing it June 15 in Paris. "I can't believe how kind and gracious stylists in L.A. have been, pulling my designs," Zoe says, referring to her competition pulling clothing for their celebrity clients to borrow for appearances and red carpet events. "I figured since I was a stylist, and they're stylists, they wouldn't want it."Zoe is ready to get back on the red carpet herself after a hiatus. Although she managed to style longtime client Oscar host in eight different looks for the show in February, she missed the runway shows in New York and Europe that month because she couldn't travel so close to giving birth. She also took a break from QVC, but will return in September with new additions to her Luxe Rachel Zoe line of outerwear and accessories, which tops out at $180.And on Sept. 6, returns to Bravo for a fourth season.The show began as "fashion porn," she says, in reference to plotlines that have taken viewers behind the scenes at fashion shows with , and styling sessions with flamboyant figure skater Johnny Weir. But this season will be a little different. "It will be more about seeing me as a career woman."Don't expect any more drama with her assistants, as in past seasons. (Two of her former assistants, Brad Goreski and Taylor Jacobson left the reality show in snarky plot twists that some observers say were engineered to boost ratings. ) "I've learned lessons," Zoe says. "But you move on, and you realize everyone is replaceable on some level. Except my husband. And my son, of course."Skyler will have screen time during Season 4 and will be sitting on Mom's lap front row at the next round of runway shows in September. (Zoe plans to show her spring 2012 collection during New York Fashion Week.)Later on this day, the Bravo TV crew is coming to the house to shoot a barbecue, featuring Rodger's turkey burgers and Rachel's brownies. "I do have a private life," Zoe says. "I'm an executive producer, and when I say we're not shooting today, we're not shooting today. But as long as people enjoy [the show] and get the feeling that they are getting enough, great. When I feel that's not possible anymore, then we move onto the next thing."The next thing could be a home accessories line. Another TV show is also a possibility.Zoe talks a lot about Oprah and , and clearly sees them as lifestyle-branding models. "I would love to do a ," she says. "I don't have any formal fashion training, and the reason I got into this business is because I love people. So for me, sitting down and digging into peoples' minds … digging into designers' minds … would be really fun." has come out of his post-breakup self-exile, attending movie premieres and chatting and eating ice cream on "The Daily Show." And he's wearing . Pattinson had been laying low since it came out in July that girlfriend and "Twilight" costar had a fling with married director Rupert Sanders. Make that ex-girlfriend. CoverGirl announced via news release on Tuesday that singer-songwriter Janelle Monáe is joining its roster of celebrity faces. The star-studded group includes Pink (who was named to the group just last week), Sofia Vergara, , , , and Olympic athletes Jennifer Kessy and .Also by news release I learned that H&M plans to install nine 11-foot-tall statues of soccer star in his underwear at locations in Los Angeles, San Francisco and New York on Thursday. The release unabashedly says the stunt is "to hype up the next sexy campaign for Beckham’s Bodywear line." As if on the White Cliffs of Dover during the Olympics wasn't enough. The $450-million lawsuit claiming that designer 's factory is a sweatshop has been dismissed by the judge after the two sides reached a settlement. (Subscription required.)We're a step closer to being able to buy "Fifty Shades of Gray" underwear -- and T-shirts, hoodies, pajamas and other garments. TMZ reports that three apparel companies have reached a licensing deal with E.L. James, author of the bestselling risque series. Katrina Darling is a distant cousin of the . She is also a burlesque performer. She is also appearing on the cover of September's Playboy magazine, which of course is hyping the royal connection. Funny thing, though. The two only found out they were related just before the royal wedding in 2011, so the connection isn't as close as Playboy might wish. has hired designer in an advisory role to help "build upon the strengths of the brand." ALSO:After four weeks of runway shows parading designers' visions for this coming fall and winter, here's what retail buyers — who will bring the looks home to you — are saying.Amanda Brooks, fashion director, The season's big idea: Designers realize that women rarely wear their looks head to toe, so it's about designing great items and putting them together in a contextual way so that women can incorporate them into their wardrobes.The must-haves: Longer skirts, around the knee or below, or all the way down to the ground — especially pleated skirts as seen at and . Loafers, both flat or on a heel. , and Valli all had loafers. Fur and novelty things with fur, such as the fur dickeys we saw at Celine. And 1960s volume, which was beautifully done at and , with cape-back dresses fitted in front. Capes themselves are also a humongous trend. Python is big for accessories, such as the trompe l'oeil boots at . And it's not about a hobo bag this season, it's more "lady." had beautiful structured bags.What won't fly? The more literal 1960s look, mod. It's too specific and doesn't translate as well as other eras to the way modern women want to dress.Will women go ? I'm more interested in the grunge silhouette and proportion than grungy prints or deconstruction. had a great take on the long sweater, long skirt look, which you could say was influenced by grunge. showed a similar silhouette. It's grunge, but it's glamorous grunge.Holli Rogers, buying director, Net-a-porter.comThe season's big idea: There are really two. The first is a continuation from spring, the 1970s look is huge. And bubbling underneath is a new oversize proportion with exaggerated shoulders as seen at , and .The must-haves: As part of the '70s look, capes, blouses and the wide-leg pants. And it's a sleek cape, not one that's ostentatious. We loved the capes at Lanvin, which was one of the strongest shows. Chelsea boots are quite important, and we're seeing more of a return to a flatter shoe in general. As far as bags, we're moving away from a lot of hardware to a more simple and lighter-weight bag. The Chloé bucket bags, for example, were really simple with just a tassel detail.What won't fly? Extreme heels. We're still going to buy some, but we're also doing a lot of loafers.Will women go grunge? Yes, but in a dressed-up way, not like it was in the 1990s. We're seeing it in all the checks and plaids too, at Carven and in other collections. And in the new emphasis on casual. Baggy trousers with a slouchy shirt is a very cool look.Jeffrey Kalinsky, executive vice president of designer merchandising, NordstromThe season's big idea: Richness. The most important clothes have pure emotion and desirability, such as a gorgeous print velvet dress from or a luxe coat from Prada.The must-haves: In New York, we loved the cocktail looks and gowns at . In Milan, the new volume at Jil Sander really struck a chord. In Paris, we had a lot of favorites. At Haider Ackermann, we loved the coats. One was black with the bottom done in white and another with the bottom in a multi-bouclé. I also think the long slit bouclé skirts are going to come in and go out. At Lanvin, the beginning of the show was particularly beautiful. One of the short dresses, bare up top, with gorgeous jewels — [designer] Alber Elbaz showed it with men's shoes. It was so new. At , there were so many gorgeous things, including a military shirt with embroidery all the way down the sleeve and mixed-media dresses. And all of Junya Watanabe's black leather was perfect. That is going to be a real trend. And , the velvet skirt with the trumpet detail in back, that alone is the kind of richness we're talking about.What won't fly? We don't think about what we're not going to buy. We zero in on what we think is important and try to put together the puzzle of the season.Will women go grunge? Yes. The designers inspired by grunge really offered a more modern, glamorous take.With summer in full swing, it's time to hit the beach — for sunning, yes, but also for shopping.There's a new level of sophistication in shopping along the coast. Locally owned boutiques with a curated point of view are changing the flavor of beach towns from beer-soaked spring break haunts to chic retail and dining destinations.The style renaissance is fueled in part by the success of Venice's Abbot Kinney Boulevard, which this spring was dubbed by GQ magazine the chic-est street in America. With stores in Craftsman-style houses and beach bungalows, along with ping-pong tables and comfy outdoor seating that encourage visitors to linger, even the retail scene has a friendly sense of community. "Abbot Kinney has an energy that you cannot find anywhere else in L.A.," says fashion maven Jeannie , who recently opened a second outpost of her popular 3rd Street boutique Satine on Abbot Kinney Boulevard, selling $500-plus designer clothing by and alongside wetsuits by for Roxy. "No matter what day of the week or time of day, there are always people on the street. Since we have been open I noticed that we have little to no down time. The level of traffic coming into the store is intense."Stylish, new independent boutiques have been cropping up in Manhattan Beach (Dawn Baker), Hermosa Beach (Deep Pocket Jean Co.) and Long Beach (Port, Long Beach Trading Co.) too, as fashion industry vets have moved from L.A. to the beach cities and designers and merchandisers who came of age working for surf and skate industry giants have left to start their own lines and retail endeavors."Hermosa is filled with authentic creativity," says David Borgatta, who opened Deep Pocket Jean Co. on Pier Avenue in Hermosa eight months ago after working as a designer for 25 years at , Guess, Hollister and other brands. "The old Hermosa is changing. It's more about lifestyle, and not just partyers and drunks. We also have a lot of pro athletes living here."We surveyed the scene and came up with coastal shopping itineraries that sample stores in Laguna Beach, Newport Beach, the South Bay and Long Beach. But let's start with the most chic of streets, Abbot Kinney.VENICEOn Abbot Kinney, just steps away from the sand, the boardwalk and the drum circles, high-end fashion and design stores sit alongside pot pharmacies and bike shops. Although the area is steeped in the powerful legacy of the surf-skate culture stretching back to the neighborhood's 1970s Dogtown days, even its beach T-shirt shops have been elevated now to something more special. It adds up to an eclectic mix of shopping opportunities from Venice to Westminster boulevards.With a bright blue exterior painted with two bunnies by local graffiti artist Jules Muck, the new Satine (1508 Abbot Kinney) can't be missed. Lee's vision of luxury fashion in Venice comes in a relaxed beach bungalow setting. There are cheery dresses, cuddly Jenni Kayne sweaters, Ancient Greek Sandals footwear, Eugenia Kim straw hats, Meredith Wendell macrame clutches and sleek totes, as well as eclectic goodies such as green tea Kit Kats and crochet covers, inspired by Lee's love of Japan.At the other end of the street, Heist (1104 Abbot Kinney) was one of the first fashion boutiques to open on Abbot Kinney at the dawn of the street's renaissance, in 2004. It has a European flavor, featuring floral dresses and fringed sweaters, Of Two Minds tweed jackets, Dieppa Restrepo booties, K. Jacques sandals, Jerome Dreyfuss totes and Pippa Small semiprecious stone jewelry.Pamela Barish (1327 1/2 Abbot Kinney) also opened her store in 2004. A die-hard Venice local, Barish has adopted her own 100-mile-radius rule, and all of her clothes are made within it. Her spring collection includes picnic-ready gingham, eyelet and polka dot fit 'n' flare dresses, solid sheaths, skirts and tops with Peter Pan collars.There's lots here for the more avant-garde set too, beginning at Guild (13351/2 Abbot Kinney), where you'll find lace shorts, distressed Greg jackets and Ronald Pineau studded clutches. Salt (11381/2 Abbot Kinney) is less rock 'n' roll, with modern-looking clothes from Elaine Kim, Hache and Hartford.Mona Moore (1112 Abbot Kinney) is the place to find cutting-edge shoes by , and Martin Margiela, while Waraku (1225 Abbot Kinney) has hard-to-find kicks for men and women, like gingham check Nikes, Marimekko print and split-toe Sou-Sous, alongside Japanese streetwear brands.For leather accessories, San Francisco-based designer Kendall Conrad (1121 Abbot Kinney) specializes in bags that incorporate traditional techniques of Spanish saddlery, including sleek styles with fringe, tassel or whipstitch trim and brass hardware, as well as leather wallets and cuff bracelets.You'll find men's canvas totes, messenger bags and accessories at Jack Spade (1132 Abbot Kinney), and Lucite bracelets and other fashion jewelry at Alexis Bittar (1612 Abbot Kinney).And for an olfactory treat, Venice-based Strange Invisible Perfumes (1138 Abbot Kinney) and New York-based Le Labo (1138 1/2) recently formed a "Perfume Commune," co-existing in side-by-side storefronts where they spritz the art of custom perfumery.The Stronghold (1625 Abbot Kinney), L.A.'s first denim brand circa 1885, worn by in the "Little Tramp" and in "Grapes of Wrath," has its flagship on Abbot Kinney. The place has an old-fashioned vibe and features the house-label jeans, alongside goods from other American heritage brands, including Alden shoes, Russell moccasins, Filson bags and Dickies shirts. Don't miss the chic carpet bags for women either.Steven Alan (1601 Abbot Kinney) has a preppy vibe, with button-down shirts for men and women, Lauren Moffatt cotton dresses in delicate prints, Clare Vivier envelope bags and Soludos espadrilles.In Venice's boho spirit, L.A. designer Karyn Craven recently opened her first Burning Torch (1627 Abbot Kinney) store here. The atmosphere is warm and welcoming, with breezy tunics in bright silk prints, exotic beaded bed jackets and dresses, woven leather tops, upcycled blouses and chunky necklaces.NEW YORK — Extra! Extra! Read all about it! Fashion publicist slapped by angry editor over seating snafu at show, slaps back with $1-million lawsuit against the alleged slapper. Kimye ( and ) cause rush-hour paparazzi scrum arriving at Grand Central Station for show. Celebrity divorcee Katie Holmes launches second act presenting Holmes & Yang collection for the first time in the big time, at fashion week hub . A three celeb-pileup — , and — dominates the hubbub at Calvin Klein.The clothes? Who had time to look? New York Fashion Week was as much about tabloidish exploits and celebrity photo ops as it was about clothes. It's an event where a humiliated Hollywood wife (model Liberty Ross) can come to find redemption, walking tall on the runway at 's high-profile show and showing up her husband, director Rupert Sanders, and his young paramour, , while she was at it.%20for%20more%20runway%20coverage.%20">RUNWAY COVERAGE: A look at the collections shown at NYFWAnd it's where Olympians can come to polish their personal brands, bringing their medals backstage to pose with designers (sprinter with designer Lubov Azria at ) and testing their reporting for media outlets. (, the swimmer with questionable style chops, covered the runways for .)There were enough basketballers on the scene (Russell Westbrook, Chris Bosh) to play a pickup game. Tyson Chandler and wife Kimberly were reporting a story for Vogue magazine. And Rajon Rondo (who had never been to a fashion show in his life before he popped up here last week) was deputized as magazine's fashion intern. It may have been the first time in fashion week history that an intern was guaranteed a front-row seat.Fashion week, which started Sept. 5, was up against the MTV Music Awards, the and the . And still, the celebrities came out in droves. Why? Well, who doesn't love a fashion show? But there are other reasons, as well."It's a symbiotic relationship," Sasha Charnin Morrison, US Weekly fashion director, said of celebrities and designers. "The photographs of a celebrity at a show get live streamed, Tweeted and blogged about, which is invaluable for a designer."You can have a clunker of a movie — or a marriage — but show up at fashion week and it can be elevating. "You have to get out there and work it if you want magazine covers and ad campaigns," Morrison said.Susan Kaufman, editor of People StyleWatch, points to three categories of celebs who show up in the front row. "For younger starlets, it's strategic to get out and about to gain exposure," she said. It's also a good platform for promoting upcoming film and TV projects, and a fashion show can be tacked onto appearances on New York-based TV ."Then there are those celebs who already have relationships with designers, like at , or Florence Welch and at ," Kaufman continued. These women are tastemakers, already known and followed for their fashion sense, who attend shows of designers they like to wear or with whom they are friendly.The third group are high-wattage seat fillers — celebrities who receive special treatment, such as appearance fees, free clothing or travel expenses, in exchange for posing for the cameras while wearing a designer's clothes. "Some designers could use the attention," Kaufman said.But is it too much of a distraction when, during a designer's $100,000 runway-show production, guests are sheep-dogging to get a camera-phone shot of Kanye, instead of looking at the gown that took 100 hours to make?No, according to Kelly Cutrone, a fashion publicist-turned-author and TV star who handles several designer clients. (Cutrone had her own brush with tabloid fame in 2009 when she let , the call girl who brought down then-New York Gov. , into 's fashion week show and was fired by the designer as a result.) "It's fantastic" to have the celebrity presence, she said. "It draws the attention of the press and the bloggers from all over the world to all the designers who are here showing their creations."While there are always brands that will pay to stock the front row with bold-faced names, Cutrone said celebs also seek out fashion shows on their own volition, and sometimes at the last minute. She calls them "drive-bys.""We've had some amazing drive-bys this season," she said. " showed up at one of our shows, and at we had — she was planned on because we're on a show together — but Ryan Lochte was there. Apparently he's a fan. And [hip-hop recording artist and record producer] Swizz Beatz was there with his baby. It was pretty amazing. It's more random than last year's drive-bys of and [photographer] Terry Richardson."The draw is easy to explain, Cutrone said. "It's a great way for them to really be in control of their own brand and their own image, and position themselves in a place and in a way that there's the potential to be seen by fashion brands that might be willing to throw millions of dollars at them."Kaufman said there are times when celebrities can be distracting at a fashion show, but that was not the case this season. The dressed-up bloggers and hangers-on (that dude with the banker's haircut, in a ball gown and a "bite me" necklace for instance) are driving just as much of a photo-snapping frenzy, Kaufman said. "They are the new celebrities."And the new gossip column fodder.Word has it that flamboyant front-row fixture and blogger Bryanboy is "really, really scared" about the effects of the new level of fame he expects from his star turn as a judge on the upcoming season of "America's Top Model." Apparently, he doesn't want to be a role model.Adam Tschorn contributed to this report.In the early 1990s, the mini-backpack was a fashion "must-have." Most coveted was French designer Agnès B.'s black cotton "Lolita" sack (reimagined briefly during a limited-edition 2010 collaboration with Opening Ceremony) and 's more structured black nylon bag with outside pockets and silver buckles (which also reemerged briefly in December 2010).For about 20 years since, backpacks have gone the way of every other oversaturated fad, disappearing into the backs of closets and clustering on EBay, rejected in favor of oversized hobos, clutches and small cross-body purses.Now, these double-strapped packs are returning to reclaim their place on women's backs in the company of other '90s fads, such as cropped tops, high-waisted floral-patterned jeans and denim jumpers. "I see [backpacks] getting more luxe," says Kristen Lee, owner of well-curated L.A. boutique TenOverSix, which, for fall, is carrying backpacks by Fjällräven (for both kids and adults), Patrick Ervell (with intricately woven straps), Baggu and San Francisco's Joshu+Vela in canvas. "They are '90s referential, but cleaner and nerd[ier] ... worn high and tight in leather or canvas with highly detailed straps." Many of the new backpacks have a more geometric rectangular shape with clean lines, à la European schoolchildren's bags, and on-trend notes including neon colors, woven patterns and lambskin leather. Prices range from less than $50 to almost $4,000. As school comes back into session, we found some we think are at the head of their class.Baggu Backpack$34This inexpensive Baggu Backpack, in neon yellow and, for fall, polka dot (among other shades), is made from recycled 16-ounce cotton duck with adjustable shoulder straps. Baggubag.com.Fjällräven Kanken Classic$75The Scandinavian brand reads more utilitarian than fashion at first glance, but hipster design buffs (including celebrities such as , , ) are suddenly going crazy for the Kanken Classic (a style launched in 1978 as a kid's school bag that has become a Swedish staple in the vein of Levis or Converse in the U.S.). Shop.tenover6.com.MK Totem's Boho backpack$350Garrett backpack$450This urban-meets-bohemian line, launched in 2010, is reissuing its original signature Boho backpack, above, in September. And in January, its new Garrett backpack, below, is slated to go on sale in bold colors like magenta, royal blue, persimmon, lavender and black. It can moonlight as an oversized tote with straps that retract. Mktotem.com.Jadetribe's Nicole backpack$374Founder Kimberly Hartman, who buys her sustainable handwoven textiles from village women in Laos, introduced her first backpack a year ago and is now releasing the Nicole, made of 100% hand-woven, organically dyed cotton with ultrasuede lining and leather detailing. Jadetribe.com.Longchamp Paris:May 4The Avengers A team of superheroes including Iron Man, Captain America, the Hulk and Thor unite to save the world. With , , and . Written and directed by . In Imax 3-D. Walt Disney PicturesFOR THE RECORD: Movie listings: The April 29 Summer Sneaks list of films gave the name of a documentary about Iraq and Afghanistan war veterans as "Higher Ground." The Aug. 17 release is called "High Ground." — The Best Exotic Marigold HotelA group of British retirees travel to to spend their golden years at a newly restored hotel but find the accommodations to be less than palatial. With , , and . Written by Ol Parker. Directed by John Madden. Fox Searchlight PicturesFirst PositionThis follows six young dancers as they prepare for and compete in the Youth America Grand Prix, a prestigious ballet competition. Directed by Bess Kargman. SelectsJannat 2A smooth-talking gun runner and a maverick cop take down a network of criminals. With Emraan Hashmi, Randeep Hooda and Esha Gupta. Written by Shagufta Rafique. Directed by Kunal Deshmukh. In Hindi with English subtitles. Fox InternationalLast Call at the OasisA documentary exploring the potential causes and consequences of a global water crisis. Directed by Jessica Yu. ATO PicturesA Little Bit of HeavenA lively but commitment-averse young woman has her life changed, in more ways than one, by a visit to the doctor. With , Gael García Bernal and Rosemarie Dewitt. Written by Gren Wells. Directed by Nicole Kassell. Millennium EntertainmentMother's DayAfter purchasing a foreclosed home, a young couple and their guests are taken hostage by the sadistic sons of the previous owner, who soon shows up herself and raises the stakes. With . Written by Scott Milam. Directed by Darren Lynn Bousman. Anchor Bay FilmsThe Perfect FamilyA suburban wife and mother is nominated for the Catholic Woman of the Year Award at her local parish and must face the truth about her imperfect nonconformist family, whom she has to introduce to the church board. With , and . Written by Paula Goldberg and Claire V. Riley. Directed by Anne Renton. Variance FilmsSeeking a quintessential Los Angeles fashion experience? Here are our picks of the top boutiques where you can have one.Elyse WalkerThe vibe: Beachy casual with a metropolitan edge, a shop that includes evening gowns and flip-flops. The goods: The 6,500-square-foot store has everything a woman needs to take her from carpooling ( jackets, Inhabit sweaters and Mother jeans) to a business meeting ( suits, separates) to a museum gala ( and gowns). Owner Elyse Walker, whose family was in the shoe business, puts a huge focus on accessories, including bags by Nancy Gonzalez, and , shoes by Christian Louboutin and Pierre Hardy, and jewelry by Husam el Odeh and Lanvin.The back story: Walker opened her store in 1999 with 800 square feet of selling space, gambling that women in Malibu and the Palisades would rather shop with her than trek to Beverly Hills. Personal shopping services are a specialty, and sales associates can text or email clients photos of styles they might like or deliver rolling racks of clothes to their homes.Where to find it: Just off Sunset Boulevard at 15306 Antioch St., Pacific Palisades, (310) 230-8882, http://www.forwardbyelysewalker.com.American Rag CieThe vibe: Southern California high-low style and culture in all its glory — vintage mixed with denim and workwear, contemporary clothing and streetwear, plus books, DVDs and housewares, and a see-and-be-seen sidewalk cafe.The goods: American Rag is really three stores in one. The main shop features designer clothing (Cynthia Vincent, Funktional, Free People, Comme des Garçons Play) and shoes (Dr. Martens, Toms, Creative Recreation) alongside a superbly edited selection of vintage clothing and accessories. The World Denim Bar has work wear and denim (Denham, PRPS, Levi's Made & Crafted, Ksubi), and the housewares store features outdoor furniture, glassware and accessories with a French Mediterranean twist to match the restaurant's menu.The back story: Since opening on La Brea in 1985, founder Mark Werts has grown American Rag Cie from a modest vintage business into a mega boutique with locations in Los Angeles and Newport Beach.Where to find it: 150 S. La Brea Ave., Los Angeles, (323) 935-3154, http://www.amrag.com.Freecity SupershopThe vibe: The antidote to cookie-cutter fashion. Hippie chic-meets-Pop Art-meets commune.The goods: Unisex T-shirts, sweat shirts, sweat pants, cargo pants and knit caps, as well as cases and Quoddy moccasins hand-printed with doves, rainbows, bicycles and other feel-good graphics, and slogans such as "Share Food," "Basic Goodness" and "Life Nature Love." The shop-cum-art gallery, which has a different theme each year (now it's bikes), also sells patchouli perfume, brown bread, ceramic pots and books on subjects like Oscar Niemeyer, Corita Kent and Yoko Ono.The back story: Nina Garduno, the former menswear buyer for Ron Herman at Fred Segal, opened the Freecity Supershop in 2005. Her goal? Put the focus back on the art and craft of fashion.Where to find it: 1139 N. Highland Ave., Los Angeles, (323) 461-2226, http://www.freecitysupershop.com.Fred SegalThe vibe: The godfather of the L.A. fashion scene, nearly every designer and stylist in town has worked here at one time or another.The goods: High-end designer clothing by , Proenza Schouler, , Carven, , Raquel Allegra and A.L.C., mixed with more affordable stuff by L'Agence, Current/Elliott, and Elizabeth & James, shoes, accessories, beauty products and housewares at the Melrose location. Mauro Cafe, also at the Melrose location and open since 1994, is still one of the most fashionable lunch spots in town.The back story: What started as L.A.'s first high-end jeans bar in 1960 has grown into a community of boutiques including Ron Herman, Ron Robinson, Conveyer, Madison and Zero Minus Plus, under the Fred Segal umbrella in two locations.Say "so long" to short skirts and hello (again) to the 1970s. Get ready to banish black from your wardrobe and get creative with color.Now that the spring runway shows are over in New York, Milan and Paris, it's up to department store fashion directors and boutique owners to package the big ideas. Chanel's garden party, Balenciaga's punk brigade and Marc Jacobs' 1970s show were all memorable on the runways, but will they make it to store racks? Here, retailers offer their takeaways from the season, and ideas about how the trends might trickle down to you.Ken Downing, senior vice president and fashion director, Big idea: The vintage effect, fueled by the major YSL retrospective exhibition that just closed in August in Paris. On the runway, designers nodded to Saint Laurent's rich peasant look, Orientalism and "le smoking" [his signature tuxedo].Must haves: Fluid, sheer fabrics and longer hemlines (just above the ankle or to the floor) as we saw at Lanvin, and wide-leg trousers and a white pantsuit with Bianca Jagger swagger. The tuxedo jacket, it's not just evening wear anymore. For accessories, it's all about flat sandals because as a woman begins to add longer hemlines to her wardrobe, flat sandals work best with the new proportion.I'm also loving what I'm calling the "Helmut language" [a reference to Helmut Lang's utilitarian designs from the early 1990s], and the idea of adding a sporty attitude to dressed-up clothing using color-blocking, buckles, straps or parachute fabrics.Will punk take to the streets? Not now. We just cycled through a moment when the 1980s were really influential, along with strong shoulders, so punk doesn't look new to me. But where it ends up, we'll have to watch the runways to find out.Colleen Sherin, fashion market director, Saks Fifth AvenueBig idea: The color story. Bold, bright, vibrant color worked into color-blocked effects and combining colors in unexpected ways.Must haves: A longer-length skirt or dress as seen at and Proenza Schouler in New York, D&G and Fendi in Milan and Chanel in Paris. Open-weave knitwear in natural white, ivory or beige crochet, macramé, mesh or fishnet, as seen at Rag & Bone, Alexander Wang, for Tse, Alberta Ferretti and Celine. And a crisp poplin shirt. We saw it with slouchy wide-leg trousers and skirts for a pared-down look. We also saw it as a play on masculine and feminine at Balenciaga, Stella McCartney and Celine. A trench coat looks great with a longer hemline peeking out. I love the sheer organza ones at Phillip Lim and Christian Cota, and the matte python trench at Emilio Pucci.In terms of accessories, fringe is everywhere — on handbags, jewelry and scarves. A shoulder or flap bag is key because it fits into the 1970s trend, as does a pair of platform wedges.Will punk take to the streets? Not in a big way. We've done that trend recently with leathers and studs and grommets, and not enough time has passed to go back. But it may be something we will touch on in our contemporary department.Stephanie Solomon, fashion director, Big idea: Color and print. And this is a serious shift because we've been in love with black for so long.Must haves: A dress or skirt with a hemline hovering around the knees or below. In New York, Alexander Wang, Diane von Furstenberg, Derek Lam, Marc Jacobs, and Rebecca Taylor all had great longer lengths. In Milan, we saw it at Versace, Dolce & Gabbana, Jil Sander and Roberto Cavalli. Sometimes these longer skirts have asymmetrical hems or slits, which we saw at Fendi, Yves Saint Laurent, Lanvin and Stella McCartney.It sounds like a myth that hemlines matter, but they do because when you go longer, you have to change your shoes and you have to change your coat. You need flat, wedge or platform sandals. And the long trench coat is chicest with this length. I'm also liking boyfriend jackets over longer skirts.Will punk take to the streets? In a way. You have to have the rock 'n' roll element, otherwise it would get too boring. I would take a studded leather jacket, something that looks worn and torn and ragged from Burberry Prorsum or Givenchy, and put it over a really frothy feminine dress like we saw at Dior. That dichotomy looks right. Or you can be a punk one day and a virgin the next!Reporting from New YorkThe women's fall/winter 2011 runway season started in New York a little more than a week ago with more than 100 shows. Several themes emerged, including a dressed-up mademoiselle chic and Western romance. Bright color clashing and monochromatic dressing were important, as were mixed plaids. And when it came to outerwear, it was all about the parka and the poncho. Here are the 10 takeaways from New York's Fashion Week.MICHAEL KORS AT 30 On the show invitation, there was a funny photo of , back when his hair was long and lustrous. But that was the extent of the reminiscing. Kors is secure enough that he doesn't need a pose-step-and-repeat photo op or a sizzle reel. The collection he showed was a perfect example of the confidence that comes from working hard and staying true to yourself for three decades.The clothes were all about sporty decadence, with the strictest of lines. "Polished, yet easy," read the show notes.For Kors, there must be 100 shades of neutral, and a lot of them were in this show, which emphasized monochrome dressing. A blush-colored, knitted fox fur bathrobe coat, worn over a blush silk blouse and gabardine trousers, with a sleek silver choker, was textbook Kors elegance. A ginormous fur cross-body bag, worn over a suntan-colored turtleneck sweater and matching silk pajama pants, showed the designer's tongue-in-cheek approach to luxury.Speaking of suntans, skirts were designed with slits high enough to show off a toned and tanned thigh. A black bodysuit (they're baaack!) worn with a wide belt overa long, black slit-front pleated georgette skirt was a hot look.RODARTE'S WONDERFUL WIZARDRYPasadena sisters Kate and Laura Mulleavy took us to the Great Plains with romantic prairie looks on fresh-faced models with windswept hair.The throughline to the prairie girl story was a sensual draped, crinkled silk gown that came in five different versions, with amber waves of grain pictured at dawn, midday, dusk, under stormy skies and Technicolor skies.Romantic blouses were key pieces as well, one style pieced together from several different varieties of cream floral lace, and paired with a lace circle skirt. Staying true to their craftsy aesthetic, the Mulleavys showed sweaters knit in Amish quilt motifs, and collage-like tulle and sequin skirts as light as corn silk.MARC JACOBS GIVES NEW MEANING TO CHEAP CHICWith the venue bathed in red light and the mirrored runway fitted with tufted vinyl columns, it was looking like ' recent collaboration with Playboy might be an influence on his current collection. (Jacobs teamed up with Playboy to create three $35 T-shirts, with proceeds going to Designers Against AIDS.)Alas, there were no Playboy bunnies on the runway, but the idea of porn and how it relates to what is real and what is fake, what is beautiful and what is vulgar, could have been in the back of Jacobs' mind when he dreamed up the dressed-up, 1940s-influenced looks made from fine (fox fur, guipure lace) and coarse (vinyl, polyester) materials.What made the collection all the more interesting is that you couldn't really tell the difference between what was real and what wasn't —you couldn't tell that the glistening poker-chip-sized sequins on straight skirts and shift dresses were actually made of rubber, that the short-sleeve "fur" sweaters were actually densely embroidered sequins, and that the lace dresses were paired with cellophane jabots.JOSEPH ALTUZARRA: NEW COOL KID IN TOWNThere's been a lot of buzz about Joseph , who burst onto the scene in 2008. And while a lot of his '90s grunge-meets-boudoir collection was retreading on old ground (an Army green parka and a parka-poncho, fishermen sweaters and skirts with utility straps), other pieces were more inspired. The twisted, patchwork argyle sweaters, and patchwork argyle silk blouse with raw edges had an undeniable cool.The liquidy boudoir-meets-military dresses, too, were the rare combo of tough and romantic. Draped and fastened with D-rings, they hugged the models' curves in rich gold or rust silk.And you can bet the plaid and tweed screen-printed denim, done in collaboration with the denim label Current/Elliott, will sell like crazy.FALLING FOR PRABAL GURUNGNotice to our readers…We'd like to let you know that this site uses cookies. Without them you may find this site does not work properly and many features may be unavailable. More information on what cookies are and the types of cookies we use can be found Notice to our readers…We'd like to let you know that this site uses cookies. Without them you may find this site does not work properly and many features may be unavailable. More information on what cookies are and the types of cookies we use can be found Notice to our readers…We'd like to let you know that this site uses cookies. Without them you may find this site does not work properly and many features may be unavailable. More information on what cookies are and the types of cookies we use can be found Notice to our readers…We'd like to let you know that this site uses cookies. Without them you may find this site does not work properly and many features may be unavailable. More information on what cookies are and the types of cookies we use can be found Notice to our readers…We'd like to let you know that this site uses cookies. 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Lauren:  Me too dude!  We’re gonna go to school together! We’re gonna be classmates all over again! Aren’t you excited?Michael Becker/FOX I know what you’re thinking: how did this happen? Why did Pia Toscano, the frontrunner of all frontrunners, get sent home in ninth place? And how is it that Ryan Seacrest didn't better prepare us for the outcome? Where was the buzz of a “shocker you don’t wanna miss?” What happened to the build-up? Or some foreshadowing?  In a way, what went down really is unbelievable. Think of all the former American Idol finalists who’ve made it further than this position. Jennifer Hudson is nothing to sneeze at, sure, but how about Sanjaya Malakar in season 6? He made it to Top 7, as did Season 7’s Kristy Lee Cook. Neither could hold a candle to Pia’s powerful pipes.  So what happened? We have some theories…   1. Girls don’t like girls: It’s a longstanding trend on Idol, whose audience is overwhelmingly female -- girls don’t vote for the female contestants. Blame it on same-gender envy or the crush factor (this year’s prime beneficiaries: Scotty McCreery and Paul McDonald), as Naima pointed out after her elimination last week, but it’s simply a fact of Idol life. One by one, the girls get plucked like the petals of a flower. Watch them go…    2. Lack of guidance by the judges: With the new judges so positive pretty much all the time, the audience seems unsure of who to vote for. It’s not like the show needs a bully to function, but when you’re faced with the decision of choosing the best in a group of greats, some professional insight is called for and these judges are failing on that front. Suggestion: let Jimmy Iovine have a turn to tell it like it really is. Even a short segment at the end of the live show running down his thoughts on all of the finalists would work, no matter how disjointed it might turn out.     3. Presumptive Winner Syndrome: Or PWS, as I like to call it -- it’s when everybody is so universally convinced that a contestant will win, that they basically neglect or forget to vote for that finalist. It's been Pia’s problem from the very beginning, when it was insinuated that she might be a plant. Why? Because she’s so perfect! That’s why I criticized her pageant queen-ness, but I was also one of the millions who simply presumed that she’d be the victor.     4. The producers deemed it so: Now I’m not one for conspiracy theories, but plenty of my fellow Idol Worshipers are (I’m looking at you Jennifer Laski, THR photo director), so it has to be mentioned -- maybe, just maybe, the producers fudged the results for some inexplicable reason, or simply to f--- with America on the brink of a government shutdown. Although it’s worth pointing out that after the credits had rolled, several people in the Idol studio audience demanded a recount.    5. You can’t touch Tina: Personally, I thought Pia slayed what is arguably the best piece of music to come out of the Ike and Tina Turner catalog -- with Phil Spector’s production, no less (listen to the original here), but there were plenty of rumblings around the web about her robotic movements, unattractive outfit, and simply the fact that you don’t touch the mighty Tina Turner. Pia had, of course, already taken on several of the divas, so why not? At this point, it was part of her Idol oeuvre. Still, the purists might balk, and perhaps they did.    What do you think sent Pia packing on Thursday’s shows? Have any theories to share? Michael Becker / FOX It was '80s Night on Wednesday's American Idol, and for the most part, the remaining eight finalists paid solid tribute to the decade of decadence, tapered jeans and big hair.our editor recommendsRyan Seacrest Expects to Remain on 'American Idol'Idol Hangover' Episode 5: 'American Idol' Season 9 Winner Lee DeWyze, Finalist Siobhan Magnus Guest on THR's Web Show (Video)

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Representing the country's best new talent, Holly Fulton and Peter Pilotto won the Swarovski's Emerging Talent Awards, while established talent was recognised too - John Galliano was honoured with the Outstanding Achievement in Fashion Design award.Today, the British Fashion Council has unveiled the shortlist for the 2008 British Fashion Awards.Supported by Swarovski, the ceremony will take place on 25 November and is set to be a glittering affair, packed with the industry's leading lights.'The Awards celebrate the extraordinary talent within the British fashion industry as highlighted in this year’s nominees list,' Hilary

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Scott and Christina departed the reception by limo to a nearby hotel and woke up early this morning to leave the continental U.S. on their honeymoon. Since they didn’t ask me to join them (what were they thinking?), Doug and Carole kindly invited me over for breakfast instead. But I look forward to many more Disneyland trips with the newlyweds and bringing them up to date on all the Eurovision Song Contests they haven’t seen. Scott, I’m glad I was in the green room that day and that you and your family have become a part of my life. Mazeltov!SXSW Film Festival organizers announced the 2012 Midnighters and short film programs Wednesday.our editor recommendsSXSW 2012: Jonah Hill's '21 Jump Street,' Will Ferrell's 'Casa de mi Padre' Added to Film Festival LineupLana Del Rey Added to SXSW LineupSXSW 2012: 'Cabin in the Woods' to Open FestivalSXSW 2012: 'Drive' Composer, Jeffrey Tambor Headline First Film Conference Panels

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