Chanel held its Western-themed Métiers d’Art show in Dallas last night, and following the spectacular, the house announced that Kristen Stewart (who flew to Texas to watch the runway romp) will star in the house’s Pre-Fall campaign. Stewart has been the face of Balenciaga’s Florabotanica fragrance since 2012, and, given her well-documented friendship with Nicolas Ghesquière, we’re wondering if there’s a Louis Vuitton campaign in her future, too. The Chanel ads will be lensed by Lagerfeld, and are set to debut in May 2014.
Riccardo Tisci is known, among other talents, for having one of the keenest eyes in casting. So when he puts an unexpected face in his ad campaigns for Givenchy, the world takes notice. Expect tremors on this one. Presenting the new star of the label’s Mert & Marcus-shot campaigns: neo-soul singer Erykah Badu.
“Erykah, she’s an icon—come on!” Tisci said by phone from Paris. “What I want to do with my advertising campaign is spread the love. Already now it’s been three seasons that I’ve been using people that express something—they are great artists, or beautiful women, or stylish women, or models that I really believe in. It’s kind of a family portfolio.”
Tisci had known Badu slightly but had never worked with her. Still, he said, he’d had her image in the back of his mind when he was designing the Spring 2014 collection, a mash-up of African and Japanese influences. “She’s one of the most stylish women I’ve met in my life,” he said. “She’s got such a good sense of proportion, of colors.”
What may attract as much attention as the unexpected Badu cameo is the fact that all of the campaign’s female models are women of color (the models Maria Borges, newcomer Riley, and Asia Chow). It follows a season with a noticeable uptick in the use of models of color on the runway, following scathing condemnations of homogeneity in fashion from Bethann Hardison and Iman, sounding off from certain casting directors, and coverage of the issue in The New York Times.
“There was a lot of talk this season in fashion,” Tisci said. “Me, I was one of the persons who ended up not being touched by this. I discovered Joan Smalls, I discovered Maria [Borges]. I discovered a lot of black girls, and I’ve been always supporting them. For me, I grew up in a family and I grew up in a culture, an education, that we all are the same.” (He was already working on the collection, and had Badu in mind, when the first articles came out.)
It’s true that Tisci has been active in promoting women of color on his runway and in his campaigns. (Besides Smalls and Borges, he has championed Grace Mahary, Dalianah Arekion, and Daniela Braga, among others.) Does he think the world will catch up to his lead? “I hope so,” he said. “It’s 2013. Everybody’s being so cool about Instagram, about Facebook, any media—everybody’s being so open. At the end of the day, why are not so many black girls or Latin girls in shows? When you have an American president who is black! When I see this happening, it’s quite sad, I think. People can be so avant-garde, so advanced, but actually not, because people are still making differences between skin color.”
If you live below Fourteenth Street, you’re going to be seeing a lot of Kenza Fourati tomorrow. The Tunisian model is the star of cult downtown basics label BLK DNM’s latest “Wild” campaign. Lensed by the brand’s founder and creative director, Johan Lindeberg, the images have become BLK DNM’s signature, though slightly unorthodox, mode of advertising. Lindeberg takes raw snaps of models like Gisele, Caroline de Maigret, and Karen Elson in BLK DNM’s second-skin jeans and leather jackets, turns them into posters, and plasters them across downtown Manhattan. It’s a bit of a guerrilla approach, if you will.
The newest installment, which was shot last week during a trip to Rio de Janeiro, has a particularly powerful message. Fourati is highly active in the political and social revolution in her native Tunisia, and Lindeberg wanted her strength to come through in the snaps. “The scenery was beautiful, but the shoot was dangerous, because Kenza was standing on a ledge. But she didn’t care,” Lindeberg told Style.com. “She just raised her fist to the sky spontaneously. I could feel that her energy was real—that she felt the same feeling that she does on the streets of Tunis, protesting, shouting, ‘Dégagé, let go!” to the former government. The pure energy is the strength of the picture.” Catch the campaign’s debut here, exclusively on Style.com.
“When you choose your lingerie, you think about somebody who is going to look at it…” purrs model Malgosia Bela in La Perla’s latest drop, a short backstage video, debuting here, which accompanies the underwear label’s Spring ’14 campaign. “Or take it off, actually, if the evening goes well.”
Bela, Cara Delevingne, and Liu Wen star in La Perla’s newest promo to showcase “multiple styles of femininity” via their notably different personalities. Bela, the veteran, Delevingne, the wild child, and Wen, the willowy middle-grounder. Lensed by Mert Alas and Marcus Piggott (with art direction by Fabien Baron and styling by Ludivine Poiblanc), the ads and the video convey a new rawness for La Perla, yet they’re entirely relatable. Bela’s above-mentioned sound bite notwithstanding, each model can be seen taking a selfie or two in the clip. And despite the vid’s grayscale eroticism and somewhat ominous electro soundtrack, Delevingne’s sound-off captures the campaign’s overarching ethos: “Don’t worry, be happy, basically.”
Walking the annual Victoria’s Secret extravaganza is a milestone in any model’s career. After all, it’s as much about lighting up the stage with your personality (not to mention dance moves—who could forget Jourdan Dunn doing the robot last year?) as it is about having a killer body, and being able to smile while strutting with a pair of thirty-pound wings on your back. While there’s no way to confirm exactly who will be appearing on the VS catwalk this evening alongside Taylor Swift, we’ve come up with an educated guess based on social media clues gathered over the past week, as well as shots from yesterday’s rehearsal (like the one above, featuring Sara Sampaio, Martha Hunt, Jasmine Tookes, and Leva Laguna working the runway).
Of course there are bound to be appearances by veteran Angels such as Adriana Lima (it will be her fourteenth time participating in the show), Candice Swanepoel, Alessandra Ambrosio, Behati Prinsloo, Doutzen Kroes, Lily Aldridge, Karlie Kloss, and Cara Delevingne. [Regrettably, Miranda Kerr announced she will be ending her contract with the lingerie megalith to pursue other projects.] Those aforementioned supers are all but givens at this point, and so it’s the remaining twenty-plus coveted slots—selected by casting director John Pfeiffer—that really get us excited. Style.com has learned that several high fashion runway regulars will be making their VS debuts tonight: Sigrid Agren and Josephine Skriver (both posted snapshots of themselves sporting the official Angels bomber jacket on Instagram), as well as Ming Xi, Maria Borges, Kasia Struss, and Jac. We were even more thrilled to hear that some our top Spring ’14 newcomers including Malaika Firth, Devon Windsor, Cindy Bruno, and Sara Sampaio also beat out dozens of more established girls to earn their first pair of wings.