August 21 2014

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24 posts tagged "Adam Kimmel"

In Paris, A Varied Crowd Vies For The ANDAM


Paris Vogue‘s Emmanuelle Alt, Colette’s Sarah Lerfel, Opening Ceremony’s Humberto Leon, and other fashion insiders—myself included—gathered at the Ritz in blazing-hot Paris today to cast our votes for this year’s ANDAM Fashion Award winner. Last year, the €200,000 prize went to Hakaan Yildirim. This year, Adam Kimmel, Anthony Vaccarello, Commuun, Jeremy Laing, Palmer/Harding, and Yiqing Yin are in the running. (Yin was also up for the newly launched Young Fashion Designer Prize, alongside Calla Haynes and Barnabe Hardy.) I can’t reveal who won until tomorrow night when it will be announced at the French Ministry of Culture, but I can tell you how different the presentations were.

Kimmel, fresh off his “dark surfing” Spring 2012 men’s runway show, said he hates public speaking, then spoke off the cuff and at length. The most interesting tidbit: “For many seasons now, it’s been a dream for me to do womenswear,” he told us. (He designed wife Leelee Sobieski’s suit for the CFDA Awards, left.) Vaccarello, a shy Belgian, barely opened his mouth at all, preferring to let his three prototypes for next season do the talking. Commuun’s Iku Furudate and Kaito Hori tag-teamed, sharing such inspirations for their upcoming show as late fifties cinema, natural graphics, and Japanese architecture. Laing read from well-prepared notes, citing influences from Kawakubo and Yamamoto to Cristobal Balenciaga and Madeleine Vionnet to McQueen, for whom he freelanced for four seasons. Palmer/Harding’s Levi Palmer and Matthew Harding, among the least well-known of the bunch, introduced us to their shirting concept. And Yin gave a sneak preview of her haute couture show next week. She’ll be working extra hard between now and then: She lost one of her three dresses to a scooter tail pipe on the way over. Check back tomorrow for the results.

Photo: Neil Rasmus /

Kimmel, Laing, Vaccarello, And More
Among The 2011 ANDAM Prize Nominees


ANDAM, the French organization devoted to the development of young fashion talent, announced its six finalists for its annual award today, and it’s an international bunch of up-and-comers—some better known than others. Adam Kimmel (a look from whose Fall ’11 men’s collection is above, right), Anthony Vaccarello, Commuun, Jeremy Laing (a look from whose Fall ’11 collection is above, left), Matthew Harding, and Yiqing Yin will go head-to-head in Paris at the end of June. Up for grabs is a €200,000 prize, courtesy of the National Association for the Development of the Fashion Arts, and a yearlong mentorship by Ralph Toledano, formerly of Chloé. Like previous winners Hakaan Yildirim, Giles Deacon, and Gareth Pugh, the designer who takes the prize is obligated to set up operations in France. I’ll be sitting on the jury with, among others, Toledano, Hilary Alexander, Emmanuelle Alt, Sarah Lerfel, Humberto Leon, and ANDAM founder Nathalie Dufour next month. Stay tuned for the blow-by-blow.

Photos: Amanda De Simone / (Laing); Courtesy of Adam Kimmel (Kimmel)

The Key To A Good Celebrity Shoot?
Don’t Make It Feel Like A Trip To The Dentist


Poolside with Diddy? Check. Naked with Chloë Sevigny? Check. On stage with Joss Stone? Check. During his 20-year career as a celebrity photographer for the likes of GQ, W, and Vogue, Michael Thompson has gained access to some of the most legendary names in Hollywood and the music industry, from Meryl Streep and Julia Roberts to Sting and Britney Spears. The proof’s in his new book, Portraits.

Pride of place—the cover—goes to the star Thompson remembered most fondly out of all the celebrities he’s worked with: Diddy. “He arrived on set at a giant mansion in Malibu, with the whole entourage and it was just a crazy day,” Thompson told at Bar Basque last night, where he celebrated the book with friends, including Leelee Sobieski and Adam Kimmel (above, with Thompson), Glenn O’Brien, Marcus Wainwright, David Neville, and Gucci Westman. “He always comes to the set with an idea in mind and this time, it was sort of Great Gatsby, done in a P. Diddy way.”

That’s the Diddy way. The Thompson way? “I try to create a relaxed atmosphere during hair and makeup, so it doesn’t feel like going to the dentist to get photos done,” the photographer revealed. “I wanted them to lose themselves in the process.” There’s one in particular he’s hoping will undergo that process soon: Robert De Niro. “If he would open himself up to a great still session, it would be wonderful,” Thompson said with a smile.

Photo: Shaun Mader / Patrick McMullan

At Castel In Paris, Toasting Kristin Scott Thomas And Looking Forward To Le Baron In NYC


As Kristin Scott Thomas, sipping Cristal, stood in intense conversation with Phoebe Philo in the upstairs room at Castel in Paris last night, it was hard to imagine the actress dressed as a pineapple. That guise, among others, was one of many Thomas donned for a spread in the latest issue of French fashion mag Double, which Philo, along with Haider Ackermann, Leelee Sobieski, and Adam Kimmel, was at Castel to fête.

“I got the idea [for the costume] ages ago, when my daughter asked me to make her a pineapple costume for a party,” Thomas explained. “I didn’t know the first thing about how to do that, but the idea stuck in my mind.” That idea, or, more generally, Thomas’ love of disguise, was what led to the Double shoot: At Lanvin jewelry designer Elie Top’s birthday-cum-costume-party last year, the actress’ Amy Winehouse getup was so convincing that Double‘s Fabrice Paineau convinced Thomas to try out various dream roles in the magazine. The resulting spread, shot by Max Farago, imagines Thomas as Johnny Hallyday, avec moustache, a tight-lipped BCBG, and a hooker, along with a reprise of her Winehouse role.

As for parties in New York to look forward to, Vincent Darré—who co-hosted the bash with Thomas and styled the shoot—is currently putting the finishing touches Le Baron’s soon-to-open Big Apple outpost. “It’s in Chinatown and we designed it like a bordello from The Shanghai Gesture,” Darré said. Sounds suitably kinky.

Photo: Bruno Werzinski

Behind-The-Scenesters: Mel Ottenberg


Designers design. Photographers photograph. Models model. That much—in broad strokes, at least—is clear. But what about the artists, technicians, and industry insiders, often unpublicized and underappreciated, who help to get clothes and accessories made and shown? Call them Behind-the-Scenesters: people who shape our experience of fashion but never take a bow on the catwalk or strike a pose for the camera. Without them—from patternmakers to production designers—the show wouldn’t go on. And in our recurring series, sits down with a few of these pros to find out, basically, what they do.

“Style,” as Jean Cocteau said, “is a simple way of saying complicated things.” And so it might be said that stylist Mel Ottenberg’s job is to find that simple way of saying something complicated. A button undone, a cuff rolled just so, the particular way a particular belt is slung over a particular dress: A good stylist makes these kinds of choices seem inevitable, and uses them to impart heaps of information about fashion, about the vibe on the street and the mood of the nation, and about how to look, now. “You’re kind of a medium,” explains Ottenberg, who is, among many other gigs, the fashion editor for Purple and the stylist for Adam Kimmel and Opening Ceremony (below). “You’re doing your own appropriation of this ‘thing,’ that’s how you bring the style into it. That’s hard to talk about, and it’s pretty much subliminal,” he adds. “I don’t want the style to be noticed, per se. I just want the kid who’s reading the magazine to think, wow, that looks great.” Here, Ottenberg talks to about his big break(s), his atypical days, and how a little fear can be a very good thing.

So, Mel: In one sentence, what do you do?
Well, on a good day, I’m the glue that holds everything together. Let’s say I’m on a shoot: I get the hair and the makeup going, I get the clothes together, looking right, and I’m there the whole way working with the photographer and the model. There’s a ton of collaboration involved. But fundamentally, I’m there to help make it work. Keep things going, keep things on point.

How did you get into styling?
Growing up, I was super, super-obsessed with fashion. I’d pick up copies of Vogue and Interview and pore over every word. And I started going to clubs at a young age, too, so I began dressing up and seeing fashion and glamour from that angle. Then, after I graduated from RISD, I moved to New York City and started working for some designers. The thing was, as much as I loved design and respected the process of putting a collection together, I didn’t like being hunkered down creating one thing for six months. And I tended to see images more than clothing, if that makes sense. But I wasn’t sure what to do with that until, completely by chance, I was asked to style a friend for The Face.

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