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August 2 2014

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9 posts tagged "Assouline"

Required Reading: Parsons The New School for Design Releases Its First Book

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Mazdack Rassi, Simon CollinsNostalgic Parsons designers rubbed elbows among alumni old and new at Milk Studios last night in celebration of the design school’s first book. One would think that all those featured in The School of Fashion: 30 Parsons Designers were star pupils, but Anna Sui wasn’t one of them. Inside the crowded room, the designer confessed to her less-than-scholarly ways. “Being 18 and living in New York City with no parental guidance, I wasn’t a good student,” confessed Sui. But it was a fun time, she admitted.

Working her way around the room, Behnaz Sarafpour correctly named all of the designers whose sketches hung along the walls—including her own, drawn on a cocktail napkin. Sarafpour later reunited with fellow alum Reed Krakoff who, like her, once interned with Narciso Rodriguez. The two stood in front of a wall of black-and-white portraits opposite Proust questionnaires that asked designers Alexander Wang, Derek Lam, and Jason Wu the following: “What fictional character do you most identify with?” and “Who are your heroes in real life?” For Chris Benz, who was in attendance, the answers included Tom Sawyer and Martha Stewart, respectively.

“When I realized there hadn’t been a book written, I figured it’d be crazy not to,” said Simon Collins, the school’s dean of fashion, who hosted the event along with Milk’s Mazdack Rassi. The new tome includes thirty designer-dedicated chapters with a host of vibrant illustrations, photographs, and introspective quotes taken from exclusive interviews conducted over the past year. Part of the proceeds from sales will benefit scholarships for Parsons students.

While upping the school’s fashion cred ranks high on Collins’ to-do list, the dean was quick to boast that crafting the book was good for all involved. “I mean, the designers loved it,” offered Collins. “They can show their mums.”

The School of Fashion: 30 Parsons Designers is published by Assouline. Available at select bookstores or online at assouline.com.

Photo: Lola Haze/BFAnyc.comĀ 

Travel Tales From the Style Set

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Summer is around the corner, which means vacation time is nigh. And those in the market for an extravagant jaunt might want to pick up the latest addition to Assouline’s Hotel Stories series. Written by Francisca Matteoli, the limited-edition tome details Luxury Collection escapes in far-off places such as Santorini, Sevilla, and Venice, and offers personal travel tips from the such stars as Susan Sarandon, Coco Rocha, Emily Mortimer, Stanley Tucci, and more. “We didn’t want to do a banal, boring book about hotels and where to go. You can find that information on Google. We wanted to make people dream,” offered Martine Assouline during a dinner she and her husband, Prosper, hosted at Geoffrey Zakarian’s Lambs Club restaurant at the Chatwal Hotel last night. The occasion, of course, was the release of the book, and the likes of Dree Hemingway, Helena Christensen, and Catherine Malandrino (who, speaking of travel, is just back from a trip to Beijing) all came out to toast it.

Waris Ahluwalia, who contributed a section about India to Hotel Stories, conceded that he never boards a plane without a portable leather backgammon set. “I bring it because the places I go don’t always have power,” he explained. Case in point? His latest adventure—a trip to Kalahari, Africa. “There’s only one way to describe it,” he said before pulling up a BlackBerry snap of him sitting on the ground next to a wild zebra.

Meanwhile, Hemingway, whose favorite destination is Tulum, Mexico, admitted that she always travels with her stuffed rabbit in tow, and Mrs. Assouline explained her habit of wearing giant sunglasses on transatlantic flights. “I hide behind them on the plane so I arrive fresh. They’re good in all circumstances.” Zakarian divulged his own jet-setting must-haves: Ambien, multiple phone chargers, and his wife’s Tata Harper face cream. “If you have cream and phone chargers, what could possibly happen to you?”

The Luxury Collection Hotel Stories is available now at www.assouline.com.

Photo: Angela Pham/ BFAnyc.com

Joie de Vivre, in 216 Pages

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“Fashion is not something that exists in dresses only,” Coco Chanel once said. “Fashion is in the sky, in the street. Fashion has to do with ideas, the way we live, what is happening.” This is the concept Bérénice Vila Baudry is going for with her new book, French Style. Out this April, the 216 page tome examines its subject from all angles. “I love fashion,” Baudry, a professor at Columbia University, told Style.com. “But fashion is the obvious thing to talk about when you think of French style. I didn’t want the book to be just about that.”

French Style is a full-blown menagerie filled with a combination of 165 obscure, albeit entertaining, tidbits (did you know French inventor Roland Moreno patented the Smart Card—that is, the chip at the end of your credit card—in 1974?), culinary delights, cultural milestones, cinematic legends, scientists, historical characters, artists, fashion innovators (obviously; she couldn’t just leave them out altogether), and beyond. “The whole book is a big disorder,” laughed Baudry, noting that each event, person, or fact is listed randomly. “But I think every entry is linked.” Case in point? Romantic poet Victor Hugo has his page right before the French kiss. More ironic couplings include Versailles and flea markets, the Tour de France and cheese, and the magazine Paris Match and philosopher Voltaire. “We French people are a bit of a paradox,” explains Baudry. “We are always between tradition and modernity, the past and the present. There’s always a contrast,” she said. Continue Reading “Joie de Vivre, in 216 Pages” »

Browsing Kenzo, Missoni, Mara Hoffman, And Comme des Garçons—Without Leaving Your Hotel

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Holiday travel tends to be about relaxing, not shopping, but just because there’s no Colette or Dover Street Market in sight doesn’t mean there’s no way to bring home a worthy souvenir. Hotel boutiques, formerly enclaves of sunscreen and snow globes, have been stepping up in recent years, offering selections to rival department stores—often with much closer proximity to the beach.

At hip Caribbean enclave Viceroy Anguilla, hotel retailer Seaside Luxe is building a zigzag-print tent on the beach in partnership with Missoni Home. The tent opens Christmas Day and features retractable walls and loungers where guests can catch some sun and browse items like Mara Hoffman caftans, Eugenia Kim sun hats, Jennifer Fisher jewelry, and a $350 limited-edition Missoni Home tote (above). “The guests here are buying items they’re going to wear [on vacation] and at home,” said Seaside Luxe founder Lee Ann Sauter.

At the Faena Hotel boutique in Buenos Aires, creative director Ximena Caminos curates a mix of high-end items with a Latin flare. She cites Panama hats by California-based brand Greenpacha and Brazilian bikinis by Nina Swim as must-have holiday items. “We do well with classic Argentine items like alpaca ponchos, traditional silver pieces, and carved crystal objets,” said Caminos, noting that she maintains the store’s local flavor by stocking a selection of wares by Argentine designers.

Just a hop north at the Standard Shop in the Standard Hotel Miami, Comme des Garçons’ limited-edition holiday star pouches are the big get of the season. Also on hand are quirky home items like Maison Martin Margiela’s melting wax candles and the Berlin Boombox (above), a modern MP3 system disguised as an old-school boom box by Berlin-based designer Axel Pfaender. “We love small gifts that are easy to travel with, such as jewelry and accessories and special, rare hostess gifts,” said the store’s director of retail, Denise Downing.

For those celebrating a classic New York Christmas, Opening Ceremony at the Ace Hotel is offering one-of-a-kind holiday items, like Le Labo candles, Kenzo iPhone cases (left), and Yoko Ono’s recently-released and much discussed menswear collaboration based on her illustrations from 1969. One-of-a-kind pieces are also a draw for those vacationing on the West Coast. Ayana Tribitt, retail curator at the SLS Hotel at Beverly Hills, is stocking the boutique with Nialaya bracelets that guests can customize on site. Their Assouline books always make for reliable gifts, while $2,500 Toro masks cater to the more adventurous shopper.

Farther south at the Cuixmala resort on Mexico’s Pacific Coast, the dress code is luxe-casual. Hotel owner Alix Marcaccini sets a relaxed tone at the boutique with caftans by Temperley and beachwear and accessories by Christophe Sauvat. “People here want sarongs and flip-flops, no heels, and long flowy dresses—anything comfortable,” said Marcaccini. “They’re looking for fluid, feminine, sensual clothes.”

Photo: Courtesy Photo

Dorchester Collection Fashion Prize Finalists On America’s Next Top Model, Giorgio Armani Plays Costume Designer, David Lynch’s “Carte Blanche,” And More…

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The clothes by this year’s Dorchester Collection Fashion Prize finalists will be modeled on America’s Next Top Model. The winner, announced on the show in Spring 2012, will be awarded $40,000 and the opportunity to show their collection during Paris Fashion Week. [Vogue U.K.]

Chanel and Assouline have teamed up to make a tweed slipcase ($2,500) for a three-book set on Chanel perfume, jewelry, and fashion. The limited-edition books, (only 30 total are available), are on sale at Assouline and Neiman Marcus. [WWD]

Ariel Dorfman’s Death and the Maiden, a play costumed by Giorgio Armani, opens tonight in London. Thandie Newton will grace the stage in a “black shift dress with shoelace neck detail” by the Italian designer. [Telegraph]

David Lynch, who designed the Paris nightspot Club Silencio, is in charge of the club’s “Carte Blanche” program this month. Four times a year, a designer programs the event, and for his turn (October 21- 27), he has lined up musical acts The Kills and Lykke Li, and he’s debuting his own album. [WWD]

Photo: Jacopo Raule / Getty Images