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Moda Operandi launches footwear capsule collection with Prada

Moda Operandi has launched a footwear collaboration with Prada. As the luxury e-commerce site aims to expand its offerings, especially with more notable brands, they have launched a 20-piece capsule with the Italian luxury brand.

The essence of the collection is built upon Prada's kitten heel and sling-backs. The styles are modeled from heels shown at Prada's spring 2018 collection. Details include feminine bows, bright colors and exotic materials. Price points for the collection start at 490 dollars.

“Prada holds a unique place in the world of women's footwear, and we were delighted to collaborate with them on this collection,” said Moda Operandi CEO Deborah Nicodemus. “Launching this is a milestone for Moda Operandi, and we look forward to our continued partnership with the brand."

While Prada has continued to maintain its relevance, revenues for the first half of 2017 saw a decline of 5.5 percent compared to the same period in 2016. The Americas market contained the decline compared with 2016, with sales down just 3.7% (down 5.8% at constant FX). A positive performance for the period was seen in both Mexico and Canada. Moda Operandi on the other hand is seeing incredible growth. Last week, they announced they received * 165 million dollars in Series E funding. This will help them fuel international growth and grow their business development across key verticals. Hopefully partnering with Moda Operandi will help Prada's business.

photo: courtesy of Moda Operandi
Gucci partners with Dapper Dan to open Harlem Studio Atelier

London - Luxury fashion house Gucci has teamed up with Dapper Dan to open a studio atelier in Harlem. The new studio atelier pays homage to the couturier's original shop, Dapper Dan's Boutique, but features a contemporary interpretation for a new generation.

The new atelier opening comes twenty-five years after the closing of Dapper Dan's original boutique in 1992. Customers now have the opportunity of ordering bespoke Dapper Dan of Harlem garments, which will be made by Dapper ‘Dap' Dan, using Gucci raw materials, fabrics, prints, embroidered patches, and hardware. All custom-made items will be exclusively sold at the new atelier on Lenox Avenue, which is set to open "by appointment only" from January 2018.

Gucci partners with Dapper Dan to open Harlem Studio Atelier

"Everyone paid homage to Dapper Dan, but no one ever paid him," said Dapper Dan. "The people have spoken and Gucci has listened. Nothing has been more significant in the Harlem cultural scene than Alessandro and Gucci coming to Harlem and partnering with Dapper Dan." In addition to launching this Harlem project, Gucci has also partnered with Dapper Dan for a unique capsule, which is set to be part of Gucci's Fall 2018 collection and will launch in Gucci stores around the world.

The new atelier spans approximately 4,700 square foot and is housed in a historic brownstone, featuring and includes an on-site production area. The interior of the atelier features velvet partitions, cherry red boiserie wall panels and white decorative tin ceiling throughout the ground floor. All rooms feature a combination of leather and wood vintage furniture piece.

Gucci partners with Dapper Dan to open Harlem Studio Atelier

The parlor floor is accessible through a separate entrance via a brownstone staircase and other historical detail elements, such as crown moldings, decorative millwork, and pocket doors have been left intact. Archival photographs from Dap’s heyday have been used to decorate the walls throughout. The atelier’s custom design references both Gucci's Creative Director Alessandro Michele aesthetic as well as the rich sartorial heritage of Harlem that was embodied by Dap’s original location.

Photos by Renell Medrano

Ann Taylor and LOFT Brands just announced that they exceeded their fundraising goal of 5 million dollars for the Breast Cancer Research Foundation. The combined brands surpassed their goal six months ahead of their schedule, creating a new landmark for the fundraiser.

"This year's record-breaking $5 million donation is a testament to the dedication of Ann Taylor and LOFT's associates and clients to help fight breast cancer," Myra Biblowit, BCRF President & CEO, said in a statement. "Each year we marvel at the commitment and passion with which the brands strive to eradicate this disease. This support will undoubtedly accelerate research to unravel the mystery of breast cancer, ultimately improving outcomes and saving lives." The fundraising total has surpassed last year's by 34 percent according to a press release from the company.

Since 2005, Ann Taylor and LOFT have donated more than 38 million dollars to BCRF. Through the annual BCRF campaign, Ann Taylor and LOFT stores sell Cares Cards at their physical locations and online. Ninety percent of the cards' purchase price is donated to BCRF. Customers who purchase Cares Cards also receive a special discount on in-store merchandise.

The top 7 Outstanding Fashion Duos of Past and Present

Collaboration makes the wheels of the fashion world spin which is why fashion duos are ubiquitous to our industry. The comfort of having someone to bounce ideas off, swallow the disappointments together, share the sacrifice, and pour you a stiff one at the end of a tough day cannot be overstated. Ideally either member has skills to offset the other’s weaknesses in a sort of right brain, left brain trade-off, but that isn’t always the case which can make for a explosively creative but financially disastrously ride. From muses and their maestros to business brains and their protégés, here are the 7 most colorful partnerships past and present.

Pierre Bergé and Yves Saint Laurent

The O.G.s of these double acts are undeniably Yves Saint Laurent and Pierre Bergé, whose amour fou is the stuff of gothic novels: Bergé, protector and gatekeeper to the delicately beautiful and isolated Saint Laurent whose psyche could be as dark as his sense of color was exuberant.“He was manic-depressive, exactly what the word means, manic and depressive,’ Bergé told the New York Times. “This means periods when he did every sort of thing crazy with happiness, and then the next day, it was blackness.” Together for almost fifty years until Saint Laurent’s death in 2008, they went from being jet-setting clubbers at Regine and Studio 54, to collectors of Old Masters, to sojourners in their Marrakech villa. Although their romance ended in 1976, their professional union presented us with ‘Le smoking’, luxury safariwear, Mondrian dresses and knitted couture wedding gowns, as well as managing to promote more diversity on their runway in any given season than most designers working in the present day.

The top 7 Outstanding Fashion Duos of Past and Present

Viktor & Rolf

Doppelgangers of slim build, with cropped hair, dark-rimmed glasses and neat facial hair, Dutch duo Viktor & Rolf met while at school in 1988 and formed their label after winning international design competition, the Festival International de Mode et de Photographie. “We’re both quite introverted,” said Viktor Horsting. “We both saw our childhoods as quite boring and I think we developed a similar mechanism for overcoming that boredom: we both loved to draw, loved to read. We were both escaping into the mind, escaping into the world of fantasy.” Their combined conceptualizing and avant-garde dreaming resulted in fashion that crossed over into art, and regularly appeared in museums. Perhaps a victim of our sped-up see-now- buy-now culture the pair removed themselves from the ready-to- wear calendar in 2015 choosing to focus only on translating their often surrealist vision through the craft of haute couture.

Meadham Kirchoff

Described by Vogue as “the show that ensured editors remained in London for the final day of fashion week” Meadham Kirchoff burned bright and died young. Edward Meadham and Benjamin Kirchoff followed in a long tradition of Brit design duos with double-barreled surname monikers––Pearce Fionda, Copperwheat Blundell, Eley Kishimoto, Clements Ribeiro––and their madcap, stomping, frilled and ornamented collections fueled with punk spirit thrilled right from their arrival in 2005. Denials of imminent closure, collabs with Topshop and even a perfume launch belied the fact that the company was riddled with debt and eventually forced to dissolve in 2015. Delivering on the drama right to the end with tales of their landlord locking them out and disposing of their archive, Edward told iD “Meadham Kirchhoff wasn’t killed by the fashion industry, it was killed largely by itself…Me and Ben, we’re never going to work together.”

Marques’Almeida

Winners of the 2015 LVMH Young Fashion Designer Prize, Portuguese designers Marta Marques and Paulo Almeida, who formed their company in 2011 after meeting at Central St Martins, have been credited with distressed denim’s market dominance. But homespun Americana, and the Texan tuxedo are staples of their inspiration which they marry with street- influenced puffa jackets, extreme proportions, shearling and bold geometrics to evolve their aesthetic of pretty but tough armor that’s become associated with multicultural East London.

The top 7 Outstanding Fashion Duos of Past and Present

Vivienne Westwood and Andreas Kronthaler

Former student under Vivienne Westwood at the Vienna School of the Applied Arts, Austrian Kronthaler wed the queen of punk in 1993 and now manages the company’s menswear collection. He described the immediacy of their connection to Vice as “It was like enlightenment. It sometimes happens in life that someone touches your soul. You can immediately feel that everything is right and you have to hang on to that.” Equally tuned in to environmentalism and the problems of waste within the fashion industry, the couple plow forward with a proudly independent provocative stance against their conglomerate-owned luxury competitors. Driving tanks up to 10 Downing Street is one way to gain notice for one’s cause but we expect nothing less from the always eccentric Dame Westwood and suspect that the stimulation and raw energy she found in the 70s with Malcolm McLaren is now provided by her former protégé and current partner.

Rei Kawakubo and Adrian Joffe

President of Comme Des Garçons and CEO of alternative retail environment Dover Street Market, South African Joffe married Rei Kawakuboi in 1993. The enigmatic Japanese designer revered for the austerity of her vision, who considers her work more art than fashion, does not deliver many interviews and dislikes photographs, but she allows Joffe to articulate her vision o her behalf. However in doing so he often renders the pair of them, who dress entirely in black, their skin untouched by sun, even more intriguing. A key to their relationship may be found in this quote from her: “I make clothes for a woman who is not swayed by what her husband thinks.” And his respect for her is evident in this quote from Hypebeast,“I strongly believe her work is at the highest possible level of creativity; What one would call pure creation perhaps… So many times it comes from just from a feeling, an emotion.”

Tom Ford and Domenico De Sole

Bookending the list with a second Yves Saint Laurent mention, are Tom and Dom, the pimp daddies of the millennium, the Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak of the fashion world, Tom Ford and Domenico De Sole. In 1994, when the American designer became creative director of Italian luxury house, Gucci, where De Sole was CEO, it went from near bankruptcy to flourishing with one swish of a velvet bellbottom, and became the name on everyone’s lips. When the pair were poached in 1999 by Yves Saint Laurent, much to the ailing founder’s dismay, they made short work of turning that struggling house’s fortunes around with racy advertising and high voltage runways until the pair finally walked away in 2004, a result of unsatisfactory contract negotiations. De Sole has subsequently been chairman of Tom Ford International since its founding in 2005. Ford has said, “I would trust my life with Domenico, and I believe he feels the same way about me. He’s a great man and a great friend,” and De Sole has said, “it’s not easy to find a creative mind and a businessman in one person. Tom is an ideal partner.”

By contributing guest editor Jackie Mallon, who is on the teaching faculty of several NYC fashion programmes and is the author of Silk for the Feed Dogs, a novel set in the international fashion industry.

Homepage image: courtesy of Bread & Butter by Zalando

Collage1: V&R, Catwalkpictures.com / V&R, courtesy of Bread & Butter by Zalando / Comme Des Garcons, The Met Facebook page

Collage 2: Pierre Bergé and Yves Saint Laurent, Studio Harcourt Paris, Fondation Pierre Bergé YSL Facebook / Tom Ford for Gucci / Vivienne Westwood and Andreas Kronthaler, Vivienne Westwood / YSL Mondrian Dress, Own Work

Consumers praise Missguided's new, unretouched campaign

London - In an industry which tends to focus on unrealistic body standards, fashion retailers which take a stand against the constant portrayal of the slim, white young model in lieu of a more diverse and inclusive body type are often celebrated. Which is why consumers are now applauding Missguided new, unretouched fashion campaign.

The British fashion retailer previously caught the public's attention last month when it shared photographs of swimwear models unairbrushed as part of its new initiative. Now Missguided has decided to take things one step further by recruiting 9 models, social media influencers and body-positive activists to star in the new campaign "Make Your Mark." The campaign, which celebrates individuality, encourages people to celebrate their so-called flaws and also sees the retailer make a vow to never airbrush its models' imperfections again.

"As part of our new #keeponbeingyou movement we're on a mission to inspire babes the world over to love themselves, for themselves, to embrace your flaws and not to strive for what the world perceived as perfection," writes Missguided on its new campaign. "Because f*ck perfection, it doesn't exist. We are making a pledge to never retouch our models' perfect 'imperfection' out." The campaign is part of Missguided's wider initiative, entitled 'Keep on Being You' which encourages women to be themselves.

Consumers praise Missguided's new, unretouched campaign

The new campaign, which stars model Emily Bador, model and body positivity activist Felicity Haywards as well as designer, artist, and model Jade Laurice has been praised by consumers around the globe.

Photos: Missguided, Make Your Mark
How would the plus-size men's wear market dress Santa Claus today?

IN PICTURES London - The plus-size apparel market is growing, as more fashion retailers embrace body positivity among all sizes. High street retailers such as Missguided, Asos, and Mango have all launched collections for plus-size women, with body positive campaigns - but what about their male counterparts? Men are getting bigger, which is set to lead to a surge in the plus-size men's wear market.

How would the plus-size men's wear market dress Santa Claus today?

In the past size XL used to refer to a 46-inch waist - now some brands are making clothing up to an 8XL, a 76-inch waist for larger men. The plus-size men's wear market is valued at 1 billion USD (744.5 million pounds) and is predicted to be become one of the strongest performance drivers in the UK fashion market over the next five years according to GlobalData. This category is predicted to increase more than 22 percent to 2022, as fashion brands and retailers alike are encouraged to extend their sizing range to be more inclusive.

How would the plus-size men's wear market dress Santa Claus today?

Plus-size men's wear market valued at 1 billions USD

In order to shine a light on the increasing demand for plus-size men's wear, Alvanon teamed up with Brooklyn-based artist Leland Foster for a series of illustrations which reimagine what one of the most iconic big men of all, namely Santa Claus, would wear today if luxury fashion houses such as Gucci, Louis Vuitton, and Raf Simons offered plus-size menswear.

How would the plus-size men's wear market dress Santa Claus today?

The men's body-positivity movement is currently lacking behind the women's, which has been strengthened by the likes of Ashley Graham, Tess Holliday, and Nadia Aboulhosn, who are leading the way for change on the catwalks, magazine covers as well as online. However, brands like Asos, Levi's Jack & Jones and River Island are among the few who are catering to consumers demand for trendy, plus-size men's wear by offering extended men's wear ranges going up to 6XL.

How would the plus-size men's wear market dress Santa Claus today?

Alice Rodrigues, senior consultant at Alvanon, warns that retailers and brands interested in tapping into the full potential of men's wear plus-size market need to be aware of their body shapes. The key, she says "is to offer plus-size consumers exactly what is available to everyone else, but cut so that it caters to their body."

How would the plus-size men's wear market dress Santa Claus today?

However big does not necessarily mean tall, as correct sizing according to shape has become a key issue for fashion retailers. At the moment there is no body shape data in the world that confirms a correlation with size and height, although the average American male waist and chest is now 39 inches and 42 inches respectively according to fit expert Alvanon. Nevertheless, it is imperative that fashion brands respond to this growing demand for plus-size men's wear, as male consumers continue to seek out more representative body types.

Photos: Courtesy of Alvanon

In Pictures: Roberto Cavalli to design interior for Dubai tower

Italian designer Roberto Cavalli is set to design the interiors of a new residential tower in Dubai, marking the first in the world to carry ‘Roberto Cavalli’ branding with a range of home accessories and ornate fittings.

The ‘I Love Florence’ tower, developed by Dar Al Arkan, the largest listed real estate developer in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, is located on Dubai Water Canal in the Business Bay area, is expected to start work in January, and Cavalli has been brought on to give the project a bespoke living interior that embodies “strength and glamour”.

Gian Giacomo Ferraris, chief executive officer of Roberto Cavalli, said: “I see a strong correlation between Florence and Dubai, with both cities projecting elegance, art and design in everything they do, each in its own way. The new tower will embody Roberto Cavalli’s passion for beauty, design and celebration of Italian craftsmanship.

In Pictures: Roberto Cavalli to design interior for Dubai tower

“It will encapsulate the high-end luxury our fashion house has been famed for. The rich interiors of Roberto Cavalli will project bespoke living spaces adding depth, character and style. They will be an embodiment of all the strength and glamour of the maison ‘Roberto Cavalli’ lifestyle, delivering energy, prestige, emotion, success, and desire to experience.”

The concept is to bring “glitz and glamour of the runway to private homes” utilising pieces from Cavalli interiors, with the concept images featuring luxe textures, marble, and statement prints, which the Italian designer is known for. Cavalli’s interior vision will be seen across the residential units as well as the tower’s amenities, including the lobbies, gym, swimming pool, yoga area, outdoor training area, and hallways.

Ferraris added: “We are excited to work on this project that combines the sophistication of fascinating Florence with the famed luxury of dazzling Dubai. The interiors of the lavish 34-storey waterfront skyscraper, located in one of the world’s greatest urban transformations, will offer its residents a refined living experience that also echoes the romantic vibes of the rustic streets of Florence.”

In Pictures: Roberto Cavalli to design interior for Dubai tower

Yousef Bin Abdullah Al Shelash, chairman of Dar Al Arkan, said: “When we set out to draw our vision to become leaders in global real estate development, we decided to only settle for the best, hence our choice of Dubai Canal as a location, and the epitome of Italian luxury, Roberto Cavalli, to conceptualise and create truly outstanding living spaces, not only in the residential units, but across the tower’s amenities. Residents and visitors will experience a true Florentine feeling.”

Images: courtesy of Roberto Cavalli

New York Fashion Week will morph into a 10-day style fest next February, with a men's event being tagged onto the front of the flagship women's shows, organizers confirmed Wednesday.

Men's fashion week will "abut the women's schedule" in a bid to streamline the international fashion schedule, the Council of Fashion Designers of America said.

Men's shows will take place February 5-7, followed by women's and co-ed shows in the customary week-long slot from February 8-14, it said. The change comes as a growing number of brands merge men's and women's collections on the runway.

The fashion media suggested that the calendar switch could help menswear get more attention if editors, buyers and influencers jet into the Big Apple a bit earlier. After New York, the international fashion pack decamps to London, Milan and Paris.

But the New York schedule shift may also be an experiment. The CFDA said the following season's men's fashion week would take place July 9-12 2018 with the women's event scheduled for September 6-12. Last season's fashion week in September suffered from lackluster reviews and saw a spate of up-and-coming US creative talent decamp to Europe. (AFP)

Anya Hindmarch to leave London Fashion Week

Anya Hindmarch is known for putting on show stopping runway presentations at London Fashion Week. One season, she even constructed a human conveyor belt to debut her collection. However, the days of the Anya Hindmarch runway spectacle are gone. The designer has announced that she will be forgoing the runway in favor of a consumer-focused presentation.

As the company works to elevate their ready-to-wear offerings, they will be doing four "consumer happenings" going forward. In layman's terms, they will be taking a see-now-buy-now approach

Anya Hindmarch to switch to see-now-buy-now model for collections

According to WWD, the end goal is "to really engage with the brand’s creativity on and offline when the product is available in store." The brand has found success with customer engagement with things like their Build-a-Bag collection last May.

Anya Hindmarch is the latest in a series of high profile brands and designers who have announced major changes to their Fashion Week schedule. Balenciaga recently announced they would be combining their men's and women's runway shows, Delpozo announced they would be heading to London Fashion Week and Vetements announced it would be joining the Paris Men's Fashion Week calendar.

The brand will be joining the ranks of Burberry and Mulberry who already do see-now-buy-now shows. While the new model has worked for some brands like Tommy Hilfiger, it didn't work out well in the favor of brands like Thakoon, which is now on hiatus, and Tom Ford, who after trying the model said it actually cost him sales. We'll see how it will work out for Anya Hindmarch.

Photo: via Anyahindmarch.com

The French fur industry and animals rights activists have clashed over a new hotline for people who are insulted or attacked in the street for wearing fur.

The French Fur Federation went on the attack this week against what it called the "misinformation of animal activists. "Every week fur lovers are attacked in the street verbally or physically by radical militants," it said in a statement to AFP. It announced plans for a new information centre in Paris and a hotline, SOS Animal Activist Attacks, offering "support and legal help" for anyone who had been harassed. The federation also lambasted the "hypocrisy" of some fashion houses who have "suddenly started denigrating fur to improve their image but who still use other animal products."

It warned that labels that this strategy was short-sighted. "Tomorrow silk, wool and leather will be the target for animal activist attacks," the federation claimed. But the main anti-fur group, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA), hit back late Tuesday saying the "real victims" of violence were the animals. "In this cruel industry minks, foxes, chinchillas, raccoon, cats and lots of other creatures live confined in cages and then are gassed, electrocuted or beaten to death," it said in a statement. It said that there were plenty of alternatives to fur and leather.

Many major fashion labels no longer use animal pelts, including Gucci, the latest to say that it was going fur-free. British designer Stella McCartney, a vegetarian, has never used fur and has banned leather from her collections, developing instead "vegetarian leather" which she claims is as good as the real thing.

But the French Fur Federation warned of the environmental dangers of animal rights groups promoting "synthetic materials to make fake fur from non-biodegradable substances often derived from petrol, which will benefit the petrochemical industry." It said that 90 percent of its members used suppliers "certified by the WelFur label for minks and foxes farmed in Europe" aims by 2020 to have all certified. Rather than being on the decline, the federation said the French fur industry was growing with a turnover of 300 million euros, and employing nearly 2,500 people. (AFP)