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July 28 2014

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65 posts tagged "Joseph Altuzarra"

On Our Radar: Current/Elliott Leopard-Print Jeans

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The summer heat is on, but so is the air-conditioning in our office. Most days it’s a bit too chilly in here to wear shorts or a flirty floral dress, so we’re looking forward to the moment when these leopard-print jeans from Current/Elliott land in Barney’s. To avoid a Ke$ha moment, we’re planning to pair them with a crisp white blazer, a silk shirt, and pumps. On half-day Fridays, we’d love to wear them with the cool sneakers from Alexander Wang and Altuzarra’s Resort 2012 collections—if only we didn’t have to wait until November for those beauties to hit the shops.

The Stiletto in gray leopard, $198, available at Barney’s New York in July.

Photo: Courtesy of Current/Elliott

Behind The Scenes At Joseph Altuzarra’s First-Ever Lookbook Shoot

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It’s a growth market for Joseph Altuzarra. The New York designer presents his first Resort collection today (created, in part, to meet the increasing demand from retailers), and with it, his label’s first branded materials. Last week, Altuzarra convened a team that included photographer Steven Pan (a former assistant of Steven Meisel’s), models Danielle Zinaich and Aurélie Claudel, and his longtime friend, stylist Vanessa Traina, at Milk Studios to shoot the new lookbook. (It’ll debut on Style.com, along with our collection review, later today.)

“Generally, the inspiration was very nineties,” Altuzarra said. (Sure enough, the inspiration board was a collage of nineties-era ads and looks from Jil Sander and Gucci.) “I was a little tired of things that were so self-consciously fashion-y. I wanted something that was a lot more natural.” That extended as well to the casting of Zinaich and Claudel, two industry veterans (and, as it happens, old friends) who are less flavors of the moment, more lifers.

“I was really interested in working with women,” he continued. Danielle and Aurélie “both have kids, they’re both married, and they’re in their thirties. I think it’s more what Altuzarra is about—it’s about women, and not so much 16-year-old girls. [Altuzarra is about] a real personality. The fact that there was a connection between them and they were really friendly, I think that that was something that was really interesting.”

The collection itself Altuzarra describes as “a segue between the Fall show and the Spring show.” That means a chance to reprise a few recent greatest hits. Good news for those coveting the parkas that were a major statement for Fall: They’ll return, reworked, in lighter-weight cotton.

Photos: Alex John Beck for Altuzarra

Would You Wear A Dress Slit Way Up-To-There?

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Between the Fall runway shows and Monday night’s Costume Institute Ball—think Ashley Olsen in vintage Dior or Rosie Huntington-Whiteley in Burberry—the upper-leg area hasn’t gotten so much attention since Suzanne Somers’ ThighMaster heyday. “We wanted to do something fun,” said Jason Wu of the hip-high slit on the skirt he made for Diane Kruger’s march up the Met’s steps. While most designers go straight for red-carpet appeal with sky-high slashes, Joseph Altuzarra and Jonathan Saunders whipped up slightly more casual takes on the look at their February shows. Trust us, though, they’re still guaranteed to keep the flashbulbs popping.

CLICK FOR A SLIDESHOW and let us know just how much leg you’re willing to show.

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