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August 29 2014

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67 posts tagged "Joseph Altuzarra"

Tom’s On Top, Giovanna ♥ New York,
Grès Gets Her Due, And More…

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Everything’s (still) coming up Tom. Mr. Ford’s hot streak continues, as the designer is the only fashion designer named to the annual Time 100 list, out today. Guess even a faux used-car commercial or two can’t keep the guy down. [WWD]

Fashion editrix and street-style star Giovanna Battaglia has relocated to New York, which gave the party set more than enough reason to throw a fête. Eddie Borgo (who cast Battaglia as his latest lookbook star, left) and boyfriend Keegan Singh threw GB a welcome dinner at Cipriani this week, where Gaia Repossi, It boys Stavros Niarchos, PC and Andy Valmorbida, and Joseph Altuzarra toasted her in style. Battaglia wore an I ♥ New York T-shirt for the occasion—fully studded, of course. [W]

Couture pioneer Madame Grès gets a retrospective in Paris. Suzy Menkes calls the show “exceptional”; “the dresses,” she says, “especially the goddess evening gowns, could walk right out of the museum and onto the red carpet.” [IHT]

And meet an unlikely fashion upstart: architecture professor Richard Weston, whose printed scarves have attracted wide notice since the good professor made a star turn on Britain’s reality show The Next Big Thing. [Vogue U.K.]

Photo: Courtesy of Eddie Borgo

Joseph Altuzarra Meets The Bloggers At Barneys

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Early this morning on the fifth floor of Barneys New York’s Madison Avenue flagship was yet another moment of high fashion pulling away the curtain of exclusivity. For the benefit of a varied group of bloggers, fashion director Amanda Brooks played interviewer to New York design darling Joseph Altuzarra. The event was the first of its kind that the luxury department store has hosted, fitting right in line with its push into capitalizing on social media.

Brooks—wearing a white satin trench and a python appliquéd jersey dress from the Spring collection currently on the floor—ably guided Altuzarra through how he decided on the label’s ethos and where he sources inspiration. The designer talked about his original founding principle of clothes for the sexy older woman, but newly referencing the recent successes of Meryl Streep, Diane Lane, and Diane Keaton in addition to his perennial muse Carine Roitfeld. “There’s a myth that you’re designing for a 25-year-old model,” he said. “And we know that’s not true.” As for seeking the creative spark, his response was refreshingly unpretentious. “I do have to seek it out; otherwise, I’d be watching Glee all day,” he said. “I’m not the designer who walks around thinking I have to do something on the French Revolution.”

To the high-low collab question that’s now become standard asking, particularly for the bloggerati, Altuzarra didn’t pander. “For the moment, I don’t think so,” he said. “I think what’s special about the brand right now is that it’s so small and exclusive.” Instead, he mentioned his recent partnership with denim brand Current/Elliott and a strategic move to lower his entry price point. And on the subject of strategic business moves, the designer also announced he’ll be joining that ever-growing group of young designers putting out resort collections.

As for what’s selling well for Spring, it’s those great no-brainer chic silk knits as well as some of the more directional pieces, the latter of which Altuzarra found logical. “To be honest, if I have to spend $700 on a black cashmere sweater, I don’t know if I’d do it.” (By comparison, the Comme des Garçons Play V-neck he was sporting rings in around $260.) And while he rarely talks about it, the intel he picks up from talking to retailers—particularly Barneys, which has carried the label since its first season—is something he admits factors heavily into his vision. “Our buyer Mia [Kinney] knows the evolution of our brand and our relationship with her is like family,” he said. “I seem to recall thinking about linen for Spring and she was like, ‘Umm, that doesn’t do well.’ ” He added, “Those conversations can be really helpful. I probably should have brought the conical boobs before.”

Photo: David X. Prutting / BFAnyc.com

Intrepid Explorers

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For the crowd sitting front-row at the Jeffrey Fashion Cares runway show last night, something seemed not quite right. It wasn’t the event (the annual fundraiser for AIDS charities) or the venue (the U.S.S. Intrepid battleship). It was just that, with Jason Wu (left, with JFC founder and Jeffrey New York owner Jeffrey Kalinsky), Joseph Altuzarra, Crystal Renn, and Hanne Gabby Odiele all in attendance, the backstage had come out front. Altuzarra articulated the sentiment for everyone. “It’s weird to be sitting at the show and not doing one,” he said. “Is this what it feels like?”

Yes and no was the answer. Sure, there was the runway and the stylish crowd, but the casting skewed toward the nontraditional. “Males in Speedos, I heard?” Sky Ferreira posited before the show. “Hey, I hope so—that’s why I’m here,” Odiele joked.

They were not disappointed. After hosts Nate Berkus and Tash Perrin of Christie’s rallied the crowd to empty their pockets (to add to the $4 million dollars that Jeffrey Fashion Cares has already raised) for the live auction items, such as trips to Switzerland and Paris fashion week, a handsome group of male models, in tiny swimsuits accessorized by the occasional pair of Lanvin shorts or Gucci sunglasses, began strutting the runway to the sound of Britney Spears. Loving every minute of her night off from the runway, Odiele yelped and offered high-fives to her friends as they swaggered past her. “I have never actually seen a male runway show before,” Renn added afterward. “It was definitely a change.”

It was an evening of firsts all around—many guests had never visited the Intrepid. “I haven’t been here, ever, and I love that one airplane with the folded wings,” said Adam Lippes. But even in new surroundings, tastes stay the same. “But I was also interested in the Hermès suede coat.”

Photo: D Dipasupil / FilmMagic

The Sting’s The Thing At Eddie Borgo

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Eddie Borgo first made his mark with spikes and studs, but for his new collection, the New York-based jeweler has evolved his cult cool-kid aesthetic into something more intricate and grown-up. “The collection was inspired by art forms in nature,” said Borgo during his preview in a grandiose apartment at Le Palais Royale. Dressed in his signature black brimmed hat and a skinny tie, the designer thumbed through a book that, dating from the turn of the century, was filled with images of arachnids and spindly flora. This pictorial relic translated into brass necklaces, chokers and cuffs, each of which featured sculptural creepy crawlies with an architectural Art Deco edge.

“I was thinking of a dark, broody character. The themes are gothic and, upon first thought, might be a bit scary. But I wanted to find ways of making those dangerous objects in nature, that are inherently aggressive, soft and covetable,” explained the designer. And while the layered metal wasps, scorpions and praying mantises (yes, the ones that eat their mates) that hung from beads of resin, polished hematite or snowflake jasper were indeed desirable, the designer also made more feminine objects, like orchids and tiger lilies, severe with sharp lines and angular cuts. But for all the angles, there was a softness and movement, too, in lush tassels in warm autumn crimson, rust and black, and hand-dyed pheasant feathers that peeked out of ladybug earrings and a crow-motif necklace.

In addition to debuting his new collection, Borgo is the star of the 20th issue of Claudia Wu’s Me Magazine. Launched at a fete at Colette Friday evening, the new issue is a curated collection of interviews that Borgo conducted with his friends and supporters, Kate Lanphear, Giovanna Battaglia and Joseph Altuzarra among them. “These opportunities only come along once in a lifetime and I wanted to make the magazine a celebration of New York. It’s the best city in the world!” said Borgo. “The people I interviewed each had their own struggle and their own New York story. I think that’s really special and I hope we were able to articulate that in the magazine.”

Photo: Courtesy of Eddie Borgo

Are You Charmed By Snakeskin?

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It was a clash of the creatures for Spring 2011. In one corner: last season’s reigning champion, leopard. In the other, python. Thakoon Panichgul, for his part, decided snakeskin, both real and as a print on sequins, had the bigger bite. Joseph Altuzarra also saw python as the clear victor. “It feels very exotic and sensual, and has a timeless appeal,” he told Style.com. “Whether you wear a full python jacket with a simple pant, or patchwork it with other materials, it’s feminine and sexy.” Sexy, and how. Roberto Cavalli‘s fringed rock goddess gowns were plenty sultry. But those in the market for something a bit more tame can still take a nibble. Michael Kors worked the skin into a putty-colored pencil skirt, and Barbara Bui used it as an accent on a trench.

Click here for a slideshow, and let us know if snakeskin is in for spring.

Photo: Yannis Vlamos / GoRunway.com