August 23 2014

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188 posts tagged "Prada"

Run For Cover


In our print-crazed moment, wild designs of every stripe are getting fresh looks, from printed pants to clashing patterned outfits. But around our office, we’ve been feeling the time’s right for a more classic, utilitarian print to make a comeback, too: good, old-fashioned army/navy camouflage. Looks like we’re not alone. Chris Benz, in the Times today, discussed his renewed fondness for all things camo (including the more graphic Australian and Duck patterned versions), and designers from Prada to J Brand to Rag & Bone have all showed print pieces. They’re bold enough to look basic, even neutral—but you definitely won’t blend in. Here are a few of our favorite items.
Above: Rag & Bone Fall ’10; A.P.C. military-style jacket, $340, available at

Prada bifold Saffiano leather wallet, $355, available at

Camouflage-printed silk shirt by Equipment (right) and T-shirt by Wayne (left).

Jake Davis for Sebago camouflage leather boat shoes, $110, available Friday, August 27, at

Bags from Michael Kors (left) and Trussardi 1911 (right).

Camouflage-printed jeans by J Brand.

Photos: All photos courtesy of the respective designers except Rag & Bone: Andrew Thomas

Do You Dress To Frill?


Erdem Moralioglu is on the phone from London to talk lace, a fabric he’s used season in and season out for years. “I’m obsessed with it!” the designer says with a laugh. “I’ve always been into it, exploring it and experimenting with it.”

A quick rummage through the archive confirms his assertion. (That’s a look from his Resort collection, left.) But this year, the designer isn’t alone in his appreciation for the fabric. Designers all over (and their oft-photographed patrons and muses) have embraced the feminine charms of lace, which has shed its occasionally matronly air and feels sexy and chic (Miuccia Prada, as usual, may have got there first—her Fall 2008 collection famously explored the fabric’s erotic undertones). Now there are evening-ready gowns for Resort at Alexander McQueen and Carolina Herrera, along with sportier, even boyish pieces at Giambattista Valli. (And don’t even get us started on lace-accented accessories and cosmetics, like Cesare Paciotti’s new lace-print soles and Dolce & Gabbana’s new Sicilian Lace makeup collection.)

So what’s the appeal? “I think people are searching for things that have quite a human hand to them,” Moralioglu says. “It has such a handmade feel. There’s an attraction to owning something one of a kind—I think, as a fabric, lace has that.”

Click here for our slideshow of some of the lacy looks, and let us know whether you’ll be playing peekaboo, too, this fall.

Photo: David Dunan / Courtesy of Erdem

Behind-The-Scenesters: Mary Howard


Designers design. Photographers photograph. Models model. That much—in broad strokes, at least—is clear. But what about the artists, technicians, and industry insiders, often unpublicized and underappreciated, who help to get clothes and accessories made and shown? Call them Behind-the-Scenesters: people who shape our experience of fashion but never take a bow on the catwalk or strike a pose for the camera. Without them—from pattern-makers to production designers—the show wouldn’t go on. And in a new series, sits down with a few of these pros to find out, basically, what they do.

Mary Howard is the set designer on virtually every key fashion photographer’s speed dial. She’s the consummate background professional, literally—she creates the mise-en-scène of a shoot. Howard (left works regularly with Steven Meisel, Annie Leibovitz, and Steven Klein, among others, and her sets range as widely as her collaborators’ styles. She does dazzlingly elaborate (Leibovitz’s 2008 Wizard of Oz shoot starring Keira Knightley), and she can make a set virtually invisible, too (Meisel’s Spring ’10 Prada campaign.) On any given day, you can find Howard mottling the gray backdrop at a studio shoot or packing up a selection of Art Deco lamps headed off on location. Here, she talks to about working with the masters, how much stuff is too much stuff, and learning when to leave the bobby pins in.

So, Mary: In one sentence, what do you do?
I call myself a set designer for print. Could be editorial, could be ads. In movies, they call someone like me a production designer; in fashion, the name “set designer” has stuck but it doesn’t entirely describe the job. There’s a lot of art direction involved; it’s not just about picking out a rug. But I guess if I have to boil down my job description to one sentence, I’d say—I create the world around the girl. I don’t have anything to do with the model, but I shape the physical environment that surrounds her and help the photographer and the stylist and everyone else involved with the shoot tell the right story and make the girl pop.

Why do you think the fashion industry has shied away from the title “production designer”?
I think some of it has to do with the fact that this is still an emerging field. It barely existed when I moved to New York; it wasn’t until recently that my studio even began getting credits in magazine. I work quite a bit with Grace Coddington at Vogue, and she’ll tell stories about sending her assistants out to just, you know, grab a chair. Or the photographer would send his assistant out to pick up props.

How did you get into set design?
I grew up in New Orleans, and after I got my MFA, I went back down there to build Mardi Gras floats. Then I came to New York City and built floats for the Macy’s parade. I was always making things—I’d make props for Saturday Night Live, for instance. Eventually I began working with a set designer—this was about 20 years ago, and it’s possible that she was the only one. We began working with Richard Avedon, and that led to other photographers and editors seeking us out. Then I went out on my own. Honestly, I feel like a grandma in this field.

What’s an average workday like for you?
I think that, like a lot of people in fashion, I do what I do because there isn’t really “an average day.” There are days on set, and there are prep days that involve a lot of thinking or researching or pounding the pavement looking at stuff. So there’s a routine, but the work itself is so dependent on the assignment—if I’m working with Annie, her process is totally different from, say, Steven Meisel’s process. Continue Reading “Behind-The-Scenesters: Mary Howard” »

What Would You Use This For?


Our pal Todd Selby is known for photographing the homes of the rich and stylish, but as of late, he’s turned his lens on a fair number of work spaces, too—his newly published series of artist Tom Sachs’ studio, in particular, is worth a look. Sachs is the provocateur famous for erecting Hello Kitty statues in New York and building his own self-styled space station (complete with Tyvek spacesuits) in L.A., so no surprise he’s got all manner of oddity hanging around his lair. There’s the custom, T. Sachs-embroidered NASA outfit he works in, chairs made of police partitions, and a tape measure labeled “Stanley Kubrick,” but most curious of all, we’d have to say, is the enormous jug of “Prada oil.” (For all we know, 2008 was a good vintage.) Have a look, and if you know any potential uses for Prada oil, please do let us know in the comments.

Strange But True: Gypsies Are Teaching Angela Lindvall The Accordion


Steven Meisel’s jazz-themed campaign for Prada’s new Swing sunglasses allowed Angela Lindvall to indulge in some very satisfying make-believe. “I always had this secret desire to be a piano bar singer, and I kind of got to live out my fantasy through this Prada campaign,” Lindvall said last night at the launch party at storied New York lounge Joe’s Pub, where the evening’s main act was resurgent punk pioneer Nina Hagen.

Although Lindvall hails from Kansas City, home of musical wizards Charlie Parker and Count Basie, she never learned an instrument. But thanks to some “gypsy musician friends,” she’s recently grown fond of the accordion. Her tutors are known as the Petrojvic Blasting Company. “My friend picked them up on the street and brought them to our house. They’re from Tennessee,” Lindvall explained. “They’re good guys. They’re very happy if you make them Hungarian goulash—they’ll play music for you all night.” And, apparently, teach a supermodel basic squeezebox.

Photo: Sherly Rabbani and Josephine Solimene