September 2 2014

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3 posts tagged "Patrick Li"

The Morning After: Our EIC Recaps Yesterday’s Action


Alexander Wang

Strong showing from Joseph Altuzarra, I thought. A lot of young New York designers are all over the place, but Joseph seems to be settling into a nice rhythm, with an identifiable signature but also a sense of variation and development each season. The mood of luxe coziness reminded me a bit of the Hermès Fall 2013 show. A few designers have been taking their cues from that collection lately. As they should. It keeps getting better in the memory.

The staging was…well, I’ll let Maya Singer explain. Afterward, the show’s producer, Etienne Russo, who routinely orchestrates some of fashion’s most memorable spectacles, told me that the existential dread that came over you watching the interminable German acapella performance was all part of the plan. He intended it as an antidote to our instant gratification culture. And they say fashion is shallow…

This wasn’t my favorite Alex Wang show ever, but I got the sense that the crowd—particularly the European contingent—liked it a lot. And you can see why. In a city that gets knocked for playing it safe fashion-wise, Wang stands out for the scale of his ambition, evident in the staging, the clothes, and even in the ballsy decision to show in Brooklyn. Now let’s see some more of that ballsiness at Balenciaga, please.

The Italian label held a chic postshow dinner at Sean MacPherson’s newish hotel, The Marlton. How chic? Well, at the company’s request, there were no party photographers present. If this catches on, that should cause some existential angst among the fashion set. Gian Luca Passi de Preposulo, the urbane, intelligent Moncler executive, introduced us with maximum casualness to his date: “This is my girl Jessica.” That would be Chastain.

Patrick Li, that unabashed logo vandalizer and discerning creative director of T Magazine, thinks more people should be paying attention to A Détacher. He’s right.


Versace and the Haas Brothers Strike Gold


Nikolai Haas and Simon Haas

“I was shaking,” said Simon Haas of the first time he met Donatella Versace. Clearly, he and brother Nikolai have gotten over their initial nerves, because last night at Versace’s Soho store, the designers celebrated their second capsule for the house. Displayed in all its gilded glory, the range of homewares and fashion objects (available starting today) was no doubt worthy of the Versace name. A golden honeycomb and Medusa iPhone cover was a hit among guests (the brothers made matching compact mirrors, cigarette cases, and lighter holders, too), and the black and gold shackle cuffs, clutches, and belts; Medusa-pendant chains; and clever tie clips looked as though they could walk down Donatella’s runway. On the objet d’ art front, there were leopard statuettes in exotic colors, and rounding out the offering was an assortment of printed T-shirts covered in a mélange of Versace iconography. “The [black and gold] one was actually just the cover of our presentation,” said Simon, “but Donatella loved it so much that she told us it had to be a T-shirt. She’s the most supportive, visionary person ever.”

After the cocktail party, the likes of Waris Ahluwalia, Michael Avedon, Patrick Li, and Maria Cornejo headed to the Mercer Kitchen for an intimate dinner. And considering guests are always late to fashion fetes, it was somewhat surprising that nearly all the invitees turned up promptly at 8:30. “Of course, everyone’s on time,” said Cornejo, laughing, who just returned from an emotional trip to her native Chile. “They’re on time because there’s food!”

Photo: Getty Images

Li on T: The New Creative Director Speaks


The goings and comings at T were covered with the obsessive tabloid attention usually reserved for politicians’ love affairs and Real Housewives. But the dust has settled and a new team is in place at the magazine: editor in chief Deborah Needleman and creative director Patrick Li, who helmed WSJ. magazine together before making the leap to the Times. Their debut issue of the magazine is on stands this Sunday. Before the launch, Li—who has also worked with Jason Wu, Rodarte, 3.1 Phillip Lim, and Alexander Wang through his own firm, Li Inc.—sat down with to talk logos, photos, and what’s to come.

Congratulations on the launch issue. Obviously it’s the product of an enormous amount of work.
And this doesn’t represent the complete—Deborah’s complete—vision. I mean, there’s much more to come. We wanted a very pointed reset, in a way. [Now] it’s a very elegant and restrained look at the system and look at the fashion world.

Starting with the “T” itself. What’s the response been to that?
The response has been generally favorable. I’ve been talking to a lot of people in my immediate design world, and, honestly, there it’s been slightly mixed. You know, “Why did you change?” And then after I explain why, it’s like it becomes clearer.

Part of that must be that it’s a sacred cow.
Well, it’s a sacred cow that’s, you know, seven years old, right? But after the success of launching T as a magazine…the newspaper has really adopted the gothic “T” as a symbol of the paper. It’s not the same logo as the old “T,” but no one else is really going to notice that. So there was confusion out there in the world—like, What’s the paper and what’s the magazine? And there are very strategic plans for the magazine to grow into a fuller, bigger, self-sustaining initiative. It, of course, gets its power from the Times, but it needs its own identity, so Deborah was very adamant about having the logo represent something more forward-looking. It’s very sans serif—a more streamlined look—and then we brought over certain aspects…[that are like] the old “T.” So there are similarities, or shared common points, but obviously it’s manifested itself in a totally different way, which we’re thrilled with. And it’s evolving and changing as we speak. It’s a slow reveal, but you’ll see different iterations of the logo going forward.

So you’re starting on the most minute level. How does that kind of ground-up redesign express itself throughout the magazine?
The content is imbued with the same qualities, and the look, I guess, comes from a response to the content. And like this issue, it’s very restrained. [But] I have this expression that I’m trying to fight the tyranny of good taste. I feel like we need to have some sort of transgressive moments to make it more relevant or have this, like, vibration between something very understandably beautiful and something a bit more uncomfortable.

One of my favorite things [was] developing a typeface, and actually, first of all, being at a place where they understand the importance of that. When I first got here, I was like, “Can we do a font that’s unique to T?” And they said yes and didn’t have any resistance to it at all—which I was surprised about. Continue Reading “Li on T: The New Creative Director Speaks” »