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August 29 2014

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122 posts tagged "Dior"

Claire Goldsmith Keeps It in the Family

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Oliver Goldsmith“A good pair of sunglasses will make you look hot no matter what,” said Claire Goldsmith—and she should know. The London-based designer is the great-granddaughter of Oliver Goldsmith, who became London’s leading creator of high-fashion frames when he launched his label in 1926. The still-family-owned-and-run brand was favored by Audrey Hepburn (remember those black stunners in Breakfast at Tiffany’s? Oliver Goldsmith), Michael Caine, Peter Sellers, and Grace Kelly, who had 42 pairs. Dior and Givenchy commissioned Goldsmith to make custom shades for the runway, and Vidal Sassoon enlisted OG to design the iconic pyramid glasses, shaped specifically to complement the hairstylist’s arched bangs, featured in a 1969 campaign. “[My grandfather] broke the mold,” asserted Claire. “And he built himself a reputation of being the best.”

He may have been the best, but Goldsmith’s business, which in its prime turned out eccentric styles like butterfly frames, winking shades, and Union Jack glasses, shuttered in 1985. He was forced to close his doors due to the original logomania movement and the popularity of sunnies embellished with the emblems of big brands (Gucci, Versace, and the like). “When I was little, I actually recall saying to my dad, ‘Can you get me a pair of Gucci sunglasses?’ And I just remember his face—he was horrified,” Claire said.

Oliver Goldsmith

Years later, Claire found herself studying marketing at college, where she specialized in heritage brands. “Finally, I kind of naturally came around to thinking, Well, hang on a minute, my family has a heritage brand. Why don’t we make glasses anymore?” She couldn’t find a single reason why the market should be deprived of OG’s fit, craftsmanship, and utterly unique wares, so in 2005, Claire put Olivier Goldsmith back on the board. Today, OG offers vintage shapes as part of its Icons series, as well as ready-to-wear and custom-fit styles, all of which are handmade in England (just as her grandfather would have insisted). “Someone described us as the ‘best-kept secret in eyewear,’” Claire recalled. “But I’d really like to be less of a secret.”

Claire Goldsmith

After five years of reworking her kin’s eccentric designs, Claire had racked up her fair share of inspiration, and in 2010, she decided it was time to follow in her grandfather’s footsteps and bow her own brand. CG Eyewear, a dynamic line of made-in-Italy frames, was born. “CG is a whole lot more personal and emotional,” Claire told me. “I would say with Oliver Goldsmith, I’m a narrator. But with Claire, I’m much more sensitive. I think it’s nice to have a playground of sorts where we can produce glasses at the same level of quality and care, but aesthetically, we’re free to do what we want.” Naturally, she’s influenced by her grandfather’s handwriting, but Claire insists that her own collection is younger, more colorful, and “you can clearly see that it does not look vintage.”

As far as her hopes for her fledgling brand, Claire offered, “It would be so lovely to get people to start buying some really good, well-designed eyewear. It’s such an important accessory. People always say, ‘Oh, my God, your lenses are amazing [compared with big-name designer styles]. Like, noticeably better!’ We just have to catch [clients] first, and then we’ve got them for life.” Seeing as Oliver Goldsmith and Claire’s line are stocked at more than 300 points of sale worldwide, including Barneys New York, it seems more and more sunglass connoisseurs are falling into her well-lensed net.

For more information, visit olivergoldsmith.com and clairegoldsmith.com.

Photo: Courtesy Photos 

Runway to Red Carpet: Celebs Embrace “Summer Blacks,” and Three New Trendsetters

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080914_Runway_To_Red_Carpet-blogIf you haven’t heard yet, “summer blacks” (©Style.com) are in. Not only has the tried-and-true trend cropped up in the streets, the recent Resort collections, and the Style.com office, but it’s also been making frequent appearances on the red carpet. A glowing Rosamund Pike, who’s pregnant with her second child, chose a black, one-shouldered pleated Prada baby-doll dress for the Berlin premiere of Hector and the Search for Happiness on Tuesday. Heidi Klum rocked a shimmering, form-fitting Roberto Cavalli LBD for Wednesday’s America’s Got Talent postshow event in New York. And the next day, Marion Cotillard took to the red carpet in a black wool Dior dress from the Fall ’14 runway at the London premiere of Two Days, One Night.

While a lot of celebs played it safe this week and stuck to trusty styles that couldn’t fail, a trio of relatively unknown ladies caught our eye. They might not be household names just yet, but these fresh faces piqued our interest with standout styles. On Monday, What If actress Mackenzie Davis stepped out in a look from Nicolas Ghesquiè
re’s Fall ’14 Louis Vuitton collection for the film’s New York premiere. Elsewhere in the city, Charlotte Le Bon posed on the red carpet in a sheer, lace-paneled white frock from red-carpet favorite Elie Saab’s Pre-Fall ’14 lineup at Monday night’s premiere of her new film, The Hundred-Foot Journey. The following evening, Hannah Tointon turned heads in a pale pink satin Spring ’14 Prabal Gurung sheath at the world premiere of The Inbetweeners 2 in London. Needless to say, these Hollywood freshmen are off to a promising start. We’ll be watching, ladies.

Here, all of this week’s red-carpet highlights.

Free Agent: How Bankable Is Olivier Theyskens Post-Theory?

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Olivier TheyskensFashion loves a comeback, and since Olivier Theyskens parted ways with Theory, the contemporary American sportswear brand, back in June, industry insiders have been plotting his. Is the 37-year-old Belgian designer being considered for a role at Oscar de la Renta, as has been whispered in New York? Could Milan be an option? Sources say he has taken meetings in the Italian city this summer. Or will he return to Paris, where he enjoyed editorial accolades as the creative director at both Rochas and Nina Ricci?

Tastemakers began falling for Theyskens back in the late ’90s, when he dressed Madonna in haute gothic style for the Oscars. With a reputation burnished by stints at Rochas and Nina Ricci, he was an unlikely fit for Theory, a brand built on stretch pants, but his show quickly became one of New York fashion week’s must-sees. Approval ratings started out strong; there was excitement about scoring clothes with the designer’s famous name on the label without dropping four figures. Over time, however, the reviews became more skeptical. In February, Theyskens presented a Fall ’14 Theory show without his name attached, and four months later the brand and Theyskens severed ties. As it stands now, the designer’s track record is one of ups and downs. Does that jeopardize his prospects? Or could the fact that he has experience across different continents and different markets count as an asset? Now that Theyskens is a free agent, Style.com spoke to fashion influencers about his future.

As he dusts off his résumé, Theyskens is looking at a shifting designer landscape. LVMH and Kering are currently signing on designers both younger and greener than he is. LVMH crowned Jonathan Anderson creative director of Loewe at 29. Christopher Kane and Joseph Altuzarra were 31 and 30, respectively, when Kering made its investment in their burgeoning brands. Yes, Nicolas Ghesquière, at 43 and newly installed at Louis Vuitton, is older than Theyskens, but Ghesquière’s Balenciaga tenure was longer and more successful than Theyskens’ Paris gigs. The other trend he could be contending with: Brands are hiring relative unknowns. See Nadège Vanhee-Cybulski, recently hired away from The Row to replace Christophe Lemaire at Hermès, and Julie de Libran, the new woman helming Sonia Rykiel.

Insiders don’t see things quite so dimly and are hopeful that he will find
the right match this time.

“Olivier has a great design sensibility. At a time when many things look like other things, he really stays true to himself—that’s what I respect,” says Ken Downing, fashion director and senior vice president of Neiman Marcus. “I think if there were an opportunity in New York, it would be great for him,” he continues. “It’s not so much about location on the map as it is about a house that will understand his talent.”

Nina Ricci and Rochas

Magali Ginsburg, head of buying & category management for The Corner, which sold Theyskens’ Theory “very well,” sees the designer as “the perfect candidate for a house,” especially because “he [is one of] those designers who when they come on board bring with them a more and more savvy crew of customer followers,” ultimately raising a house’s international reputation.

If not a position at an established house, why not his own label? “I know there are a lot of people who said he wasn’t commercially successful, but I was at Barneys and we sold it,” says Julie Gilhart, now a freelance fashion consultant. “He had a following, and it wasn’t the Nina Ricci or the Rochas customer, it was the Olivier customer,” Gilhart continues. “I’ve always thought that Olivier could do his own thing. When I met him, that’s what he was doing, his own thing. It’s what I want to see for him. He’s one of the great designers.”

As a designer accustomed to the machinery of a big brand behind him, starting out on his own could be daunting. But here in New York, Theyskens has watched other designers—Jason Wu, Prabal Gurung—launch careers by putting red-carpet dresses on the backs of celebrities. And anyone who remembers Irving Penn’s portrait of Nicole Kidman in Rochas knows that Theyskens makes a sublime gown. If he were designing at that level again, Kidman and co. would presumably line up to wear him.

theyskens theory

Still, even with A-list endorsements, it can take a decade for a brand to come into its own, and even then it cannot live on eveningwear alone. Wu has branched out into accessories; Gurung counts knitwear among his biggest developing categories. This is where Theyskens’ experience at Theory could pay off, the thinking being that his design vocabulary is much broader than when he arrived in New York four years ago. And his comfort level with everyday is a lot broader now than it was when he arrived. “It broadened his range,” says Neiman’s Downing. “As we all know, he loves couture and does superlative evening pieces. Theory opened up a new vocabulary about sportswear, and living in New York was good for him to see how people on this side of the pond live, dress, and work. It’s a different sensibility than in Europe.”

Anne Slowey, Elle‘s fashion features director, says, “I like what he did for Theory—there is a place for luxury normcore. But I don’t know if it was right for the brand. Unfortunately, Olivier has been miscast all along the way. He’s either too ahead of his time or too far out in left field. Eventually fashion will catch up with him.”

With the industry firmly behind Theyskens—unlike, say, John Galliano, who, since leaving Dior amid a hate-speech scandal, has received support from some influential corners but has yet to redeem himself in the eyes of American retailers—he’s got a good chance of scoring a new gig. But even if he doesn’t land a job quickly, Theyskens isn’t about to fade from fashion’s collective memory bank anytime soon. An Olivier Saillard-curated exhibition set to open at the Palais de la Porte Dorée in December will feature a dress from one of the designer’s earliest signature collections. For now, there’s the virtual museum that is Instagram. #oliviertheyskens.

Photos: IndigitalImages.com; GoRunway.com

The 15 Stylish Looks You Loved Most This Week

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look of the dayThis week, Style.com editors turned their attention to the trends you’ll be wearing this Fall. Our Look of the Day polls asked you to vote on everything from patched-up jeans to androgynous boiler suits, plus a Miami Swim Week round-up to get you inspired for your holiday vacations. On Monday, we rounded up a handful of utilitarian flight suits we’ve spotted of late. You voted for Hanne Gaby Odiele’s metallic number, which stood out in a sea of stilettos and couture during Paris Fashion Week in February. A close runner-up was Edie Campbell, who opted for a workwear-inspired suit last year at Glastonbury.

Tuesday, we took note of another major street style trend: patches. Laetitia Paul’s Louis Vuitton jacket covered in giant, varsity-style insignia looked especially fresh on the streets of London. Tommy Ton also spotted a girl with Dior’s patched-up mini bag, which looked cool with combat boots. We’ll be trying out the trend this fall with easy-to-wear patchwork jeans, like the ones in Christopher Kane’s Resort collection. On Wednesday, our focus shifted to the bronzed babes at Miami Swim Week, where Mara Hoffman showed another winning collection. She posed backstage with models in her super-bright, tribal-inspired suits, which took first place in your book. We saw even more bold looks at RVCA, Gottex, and Wildfox. What else was on our minds this week? Off-the-shoulder silhouettes, landscape prints, and so much more. Click here for a slideshow of the winning looks, plus a few runners-up.

Runway to Red Carpet: Ladies in Lace and Cues from ’80s Prom Queens

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When it comes to fashion, the red carpet can often be filled with the same old, same old. But now and again, some bold celebrities shake things up with experimental, next-level looks. Here’s what’s feeling fresh this week.

Zoe Saldana Guardians of the Galaxy Los Angeles Louis Vuitton Resort 2015From classic hits to updated takes on the past, a wealth of noteworthy wares walked down the red carpet this week. A handful of stars opted for frocks with lace or insets. Cate Blanchett and Zoe Saldana chose looks with all-over lace. Saldana attended the L.A. premiere of Guardians of the Galaxy in an ensemble from the Louis Vuitton Resort ’15 catwalk on Monday night, and Blanchett stepped out in a white lace-covered cocktail dress with butterfly sleeves from Elie Saab’s Spring ’13 Haute Couture offering for a SK-II beauty event in Shanghai the following evening. In Hollywood, Diane Kruger turned up at the Fox All-Star party in a black Marios Schwab Resort ’15 jumpsuit with a lace keyhole cutout, which was a popular detail for the season.

A surprising, yet decidedly fresh trend this week was the contemporary take on the 80s prom dress. Perhaps one too many Sixteen Candles reruns were the cause for inspiration, but several celebs seemed to be channeling retro prom queens. Rachel McAdams opted for a one-shouldered Zuhair Murad Fall ’14 Haute Couture jewel-toned number with a modern interpretation of a bustle at the hip for the New York premiere of A Most Wanted Man. Kylie Minogue went for the shimmer-effect, donning a gold metallic Blumarine Fall ’14 frock for a photo call for The Voice in Sydney. Selena Gomez decided on a more literal approach, layering piles of tulle over a Dior Spring ’14 cocktail dress for the Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation gala in France. It appears there are still a few lessons we can learn from the decade of big hair, sleeves, and skirts.

Here, more of this week’s red-carpet highlights.