August 21 2014

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EXCLUSIVE: Calvin Klein Goes Back to Its Roots for Net-a-Porter


Calvin Klein

“It really is very DNA-driven, very Calvin,” Francisco Costa said of his new capsule for Net-a-Porter. Having last year celebrated his 10th anniversary at the house, Costa is more than well-versed in the Calvin Klein vernacular. And this 14-piece lineup, which debuts exclusively here, was created with the CK lifestyle in mind.

It’s a vision that NAP was quick to snap up. “We presented the collection as a lifestyle collection including jackets, trousers, sweaters, [and more]. Then they made an edit, and the edit turned out to be mostly dresses because it is the category we do so well with,” Costa said on a call from Water Mill, New York, where the luxury e-commerce giant was feting the collection with a private lunch. But it’s not just frocks here: Separates such as a crisp white maxi skirt, close-cut ribbed tops, a Lurex-laced pencil skirt, and a classic oxford all channel Costa’s signature, streamlined vision for the brand. A couple of pieces evoke Calvin Klein’s red-carpet coups. Fans of the salmon-hued T-shirt style that a very blond Emma Stone sported at the 2011 Golden Globes can pick up a spaghetti-strap number in a similar shade. A rosy maxi, meanwhile, will appeal to those coveting the sex appeal Jennifer Lawrence exuded when she wore a Calvin scoop-neck gown at the Oscars back in 2011.

Calvin Klein

Calvin Klein’s exclusive Net-a-Porter capsule collection launches August 1 on

Mother of Pearl’s Latest Art Star


Mother of Pearl x Jim Lambie

According to our Spring ’14 Trend Report, art and fashion are sharing a major moment. But for Mother of Pearl’s Maia Norman and Amy Powney, this isn’t anything new. Each season, the duo works with a contemporary artist (Gary Hume and Mat Collishaw have been past collaborators) to design Mother of Pearl’s clever prints, and their latest offering, which debuted exclusively today on Net-a-Porter, got the Jim Lambie treatment.

This isn’t the first time Lambie has teamed up with the brand. The artist lent a hand to the Spring 2011 collection, which was Powney’s first as head of design. “Working with Jim Lambie helped me set the tone for Mother of Pearl, so in some ways, I feel it is not just complimentary of our aesthetic, but also part of the foundation,” Powney told Two of Lambie’s major works lent themselves to the new capsule. His “Found Flower Painting” series, in which surrealist blooms are collaged with posters of musicians, inspired the black-and-white striped gown, blouse, and sneakers splashed with fuchsia florals. And his eye-catching vinyl floor installations, which mimic a 2-D rainbow beneath your feet, were transferred to a T-shirt and column skirt in thick bands of pastels. Over the past few seasons, mixed stripes, florals, and unexpected hues have become ingrained in Mother of Pearl’s DNA, but the Lambie style makes it all feel fresh as a daisy for Spring. Now that’s what we call wearable art.

Ranging from $275 to $900, Mother of Pearl’s Jim Lambie collection is available, from today, on

A Bark To Soothe The High Heel Bite


Do your feet hurt? Chances are, after a few seasons walking around in platform-wedge- sandal-bootie-skyscrapers, they do. And now it’s time to give those dogs a break. That’s the thinking behind the debut shoe line Newbark. Launching tomorrow exclusively at Net-a-Porter, the Newbark is pretty much the ultimate slipper for padding around town. “It’s a one-item line,” explains Maryam Malakpour, who conceived and designed the Newbark with her sister and fellow stylist Marjan. “That felt like the cool thing to do—one item that was functional, subtle, and unpretentious. Classic, in a new way.” Handmade in Los Angeles, the $350 slipper comes in super-soft matte, metallic, and perforated leather in a range of colors. New shades and leather treatments will be added in future seasons. But the goal, according to the Malakpour sisters, who have worked with everyone from Heidi Klum to Karen O., is to keep the single style relatively unchanged. “It’s always a shame when you love something to death, and then you can’t find it anymore,” notes Maryam. “Maybe eventually we’ll branch out into canvas.”

Massenet And Mouret: Needing A Computer To Shop Is So Last Year


Natalie Massenet and Roland Mouret go way back, all the way back to both Net-a-Porter’s and Mouret’s earliest days. At London’s Regent Street Apple store last night, the two friends gave a cozy fireside chat to a group of fashion fans. “We’ve seen our businesses grow together largely due to technology,” explained Massenet. “We always had these private conversations about technology so we thought, hey, why not have this chat in public?” So last night they did in celebration of Net-App, the latest gizmo on the site, which downloads shopping info from NAP directly onto your iPhone and iPod. “Needing a computer to shop is so last year,” proclaimed Mouret. “It doesn’t mean you have to be antisocial. It’s all about pushing the levels of access and letting women shop whenever we want,” said Massenet, who needless to say didn’t mind as the crowd twittered and blogged away onto all their various devices. “This is just a culmination of our vision from 1999, to provide access to shopping on every available technology.” The next sci-fi-cum-fashion frontier for Massenet and co.? “Online fitting,” she explained. “We’re always talking to companies who are working on cracking the code.” Avoiding returns because of fit is apparently every e-tailer’s bugaboo. Added Massenet, “The company that comes up with a real solution will be very wealthy indeed.”

Do Sales With Expiration Dates Work Retail Magic?


Being indecisive, I tend to avoid any form of stressful shopping, whether it’s a YSL sample sale or even a boutique with a pushy owner. But my interest was piqued yesterday when I found an e-mail from Neiman Marcus in my inbox touting its Midday Dash, an exclusive two-hour online sale with prices slashed in half. I clicked only to find that the sale had ended, but I did manage to see that a lot of the merch, like a Tory Burch bag marked down from $450 to $225, had actually sold out. The ticking clock seemed to have worked its marketing magic. Of course, creating a sense of urgency isn’t a new retail trick; anyone who’s watched QVC knows that. But it seems to be working its way into the higher end, particularly online, where it’s easier to reach customers for something as blink-and-miss as a two-hour sale. Online sample saler, which keeps all of its sales to 36 hours, has become a hit with designer-obsessed and shopping-as-sport types. Every Gilt page has the sale’s expiration date clearly marked at the top, but Gilt Groupe’s manager of marketing and communications, Amanda Graber, reports that 30 percent of its traffic comes in the first hour of a sale, while 50 percent is in the first three. All of its sales start at noon, making it easy for shoppers to work it into their daily routines. Meanwhile, WWD reports that Net-a-Porter’s soon-to-launch bargain site will feature regular pop-up sales. I’m predicting it’ll capitalize on the ticking-clock effect, too. During These Times, the thrill of a bargain is pretty satisfying, so is scoring it like you’re shopping on 24 even better? Tell us what you think. Do sales with expiration dates put you in shopping mode?