23 posts tagged "The Webster"
Esteban Cortazar caused a sensation when he landed on the New York catwalks back in 2002. His very first collection was snapped up by Bloomingdale’s, and he found himself face-to-face with Oprah, the youngest designer ever, at 18, to stage a fashion show. Fast-forward twelve years (which included a brief stint at Emanuel Ungaro) and Cortazar is angling for the headlines again. This time the news is the manner in which he’s presenting his expanded eponymous range.
For two seasons, he distributed his collection strictly through Net-a-Porter. Now, with new investors, London’s MH Luxe, behind him, he’s got Barneys and The Webster signed on, too. Those stores have already previewed his Spring collection (normally seen in September and October) and placed orders that he’s currently in the midst of producing. Come Paris fashion week, he’ll present the collection to the press, and, as he puts it, “the first drops will start right after [the show] at the beginning of October. When all the communications start happening, the client can know she can have it right away.” (The collection, which ranges from a molded saddle leather top to a soft T-shirt with a good yard of fringe circling the hem and includes more traditional tailoring, is designed to be trans-seasonal.)
Fashion has been griping for years about the lag time between runway shows and store deliveries. “Why not do something that speaks to the future?” Cortazar asks. “It doesn’t make sense anymore to show a collection that won’t be in stores for six months—the momentum and the desire dissipate. Everyone likes to see everything instantly now, but [up until now] no one’s been able to buy instantly.” Will other designers follow Cortazar’s lead? If they do, the trickle-down effect could be huge for traditional fashion magazines, which need production time of their own to turn around new issues. But he reports that buyers “are responding in a really positive way.”
Style.com debuts a video about the project exclusively here.
Ji Oh is a name you’re sure to hear more of in the future. After making waves with her debut Fall ’14 outing, which was grounded in minimalist basics and androgynous tailoring, the Korean-born, New York-based designer continued to impress with her sophomore Resort lineup. Riffing on the idea of school uniforms, the emerging talent showed no-frills separates, such as a crisp blue button-up teamed with a knife-pleated miniskirt that would satisfy most private school dress codes. Ditto for a trompe l’oeil-effect number that gave the impression of a white shirt tucked into a slim pencil skirt. While those preppy looks had schoolgirl appeal in spades, the new collection was more about offering sophisticated staples with a clever twist for the modern woman’s everyday wardrobe. The Parsons grad knows how to cut a killer pair of pants, and her instinct for fit and quality construction belie her newcomer status. Among the winners here were skinny stovepipes with sporty zipper openings at the ankles; more-relaxed cropped trousers; and flat-front, high-waisted flares—each style more flattering than the next. Those standout pants mixed in seamlessly with decidedly un-trendy essentials, including languid trenches (which had the same swing in both lightweight wool and white leather), refined tees, and sharp shorts suits. “Above all, everything has to be effortless,” said Oh at a preview. Simply put: The up-and-comer’s taste level is already off the charts, and early retail support (she’s carried by the likes of Intermix, Satine, and The Webster) further proves that this young designer is one to watch.
To see Ji Oh’s full Resort ’15 collection ($350 to $1,950), visit jiohny.com
LVMH Prize finalist. Creative director of Paco Rabanne. Founder of the fledgling label Atto. French designer Julien Dossena is juggling a lot of roles this spring, but he was in New York last week wearing his Paco Rabanne hat. Dossena replaced Manish Arora at Rabanne early last year shortly after leaving Balenciaga, where he worked under Nicolas Ghesquière. By his own account, he has his work cut out for him at Rabanne. Outside of France and fashion circles, the brand is known for little more than perfume and men’s cologne, despite the late designer’s groundbreaking designs of the 1960s. Jane Fonda wouldn’t have been half as convincing as Barbarella without her Rabanne chain mail, and photos of pretty young things in his metal shifts encapsulate the futurism and free love of the era. But the company has floundered in recent years. “The image of the brand before was a bit blurry,” Dossena said. “Now we are taking back the reins.” Over lunch with Style.com, the designer talked Jane Birkin, Françoise Hardy, and why chain mail will always be essential.
How did Paco Rabanne sales go for Fall?We got opinion-leader kind of shops: Corso Como, Maria Luisa, The Webster, Blake, Just One Eye, Dover Street Market in New York and London. It’s a good start. And Barneys for the bags.
Did any piece in particular connect with buyers?We really wanted to emphasize a daywear wardrobe, but—there’s always a but—the stores need a bit of chain mail on the rack. People love it, they buy it. The challenge is to figure out how we can integrate chain mail into a daywear wardrobe.
As you say, the vision of the brand was blurry before. How do you intend to clear it up?
If women have only one Paco Rabanne dress in their closets, the brand isn’t going to develop. So we want to move away from the super-embroidered dresses that were the base of Rabanne before. We want to make it a classic brand for a younger customer. This season, we got the stores we need to deliver that commercial message. Now we’re working on our first pre-collection. We’re going to open our first shop in about a year and a half. Those are the first steps to having a strong brand.
Where will the shop be?
In Paris. Paco Rabanne is a classic from the sixties like Courrèges or Cardin. It can compete now with Balmain, Carven, those kinds of names. Paco Rabanne can be one of them. In France, Paco Rabanne is really deep in the culture. People love the name in France. I don’t know about America.
People who know fashion here know Jane Birkin and Françoise Hardy in the dresses—those cool metal dresses.
That’s what we want to bring back, that coolness that we love from those images. The question is how to translate those images into new product. If there’s a main word that we’re trying to do, it’s effortless.
To be a successful revival brand these days, you can’t just be about the past, right?
It has to be a balance of not losing the signature, but not being impressed by it, either—not being controlled by it. In five, six, seven years, Paco could become a lifestyle brand. Like if you travel, what kind of clothes do you want to wear? If you go to the countryside on the weekend, what do you want to take? I’m super-interested in that aspect and bringing that together with the visual futuristic signature of Paco Rabanne. It’s a good challenge. The good thing, I hope, is that we cleaned the image of the brand quite fast. And now we can move forward.
No one was paying much attention to the label, but very quickly you seem to have caught people’s attention.
I hope. The name deserves it.
Do you think launching your own brand, Atto, at the same time as you signed on at Paco Rabanne has been helpful?
Yes. You learn so much on your own. When you launch your own brand, you have to be super-logical. Basically, it’s either you can do that or you can’t. That’s all. It teaches you not to be afraid to say, “OK, we can’t make a show? Don’t make a show.” But also to find the power in not making a show by really focusing on your products.
That’s what I wanted to do after I left Balenciaga. At Balenciaga I was working on the shows, and when you design clothes for a show it’s totally different than when you design for a customer. Paco Rabanne has taught me that a good basic with a little something more can be super-interesting. Each look has to go on a woman, has to be relevant.
But is it hard to manage two brands?
I just started wondering about that now. It happened randomly that I started Atto and Paco at the same time. I launched Atto in December  just after Balenciaga. Then Paco called me for freelance in mid-January. Now that we’re adding pre-collection in Paco, I wonder what is the best way to keep the balance. At the end, the signature is me. Of course I have the Paco name to hold on to, but in the end, it’s what I think is good.
How is the Paco girl different from the Atto girl?
She’s different, but she’s still my girl. Maybe at Paco she’s more sensual, she’s more rich. At Atto, her look is more sharp, more clean.
Are you going to stick to showing Atto by appointment only during the pre-collections?
Yes, I don’t want it to go too fast or too big. I really want to take my time and enjoy it. To not put pressure on me or the collection. What I’d love to do is co-branding, or collaborations with people who have a specific technique or savoir faire, like Atto Mackintosh, Atto and Charvet shirts. That’s a dream. I love the Comme des Garçons model—you know the way they do those jackets with Barbour. I love that. They keep the essence of Barbour, but they add all their craziness and twists to it.
I’m almost afraid to do a show for Atto because I worry that I will lose the aim of Atto. Doing a show totally transforms your vision of your clothes. It makes you think about the casting, all these kinds of things. When I design Atto now, I say, “OK, is the girl going to be comfortable in that dress? What can she mix it with?” I’m afraid to lose that mix-and-match, modular feeling of Atto.
What about the LVMH award? You’re one of the twelve finalists, for Atto. Congratulations.
I was super-honored and super-happy. You know, in France, there is not much support for young designers and young brands. It’s really hopeful when you see that a big group like LVMH is looking at what young designers are doing. It’s a good thing. It means you are not playing anymore. It’s serious. If Atto doesn’t win, we already won, just to be part of the designer group. It’s quite an eclectic group of finalists. And I’m so happy it’s going on in Paris, you know, finally.
There is something moving. My friends and I are super-happy that J.W. Anderson is coming to Loewe, that Nicolas Ghesquière is coming to Vuitton. You can feel a good energy now in Paris.
Virgil Abloh’s career to date has conspired to put him in the periphery of the spotlight. As one of the creative directors who works with Kanye West, the Chicago-raised designer plays a key role in creating tour merchandise, pop-up stores, and West’s shows. He collaborates on graphics for the cult streetwear label Hood by Air. And last year, on 12/12/12, he launched Pyrex Vision, an ultra-limited line of logo-fied T-shirts and shorts that sold out nearly immediately at every store they arrived at, from Colette, in Paris, to VFiles, in New York. Abloh’s name is well-known to a few overlapping groups of hip-hop and streetwear obsessives—he is part of the Been Trill collective, with Matthew Williams and Heron Preston, as well as part of Donda, the creative arm of West’s entourage and enterprise—but he’s eluded wider recognition. That is, potentially, until now.
Abloh is preparing to launch Off-White, a streetwear-meets-fashion line that builds on, and expands upon, Pyrex Vision. Pyrex Vision was comprised of third-party merchandise, such as Champion T-shirts, screen-printed with Abloh-designed graphics; Off-White will be a full cut-and-sew line, made in Italy. “Streetwear has a one-trick-ponyness to it,” Abloh says. “I want to give my point of view and merge street sensibilities in a proper fashion context. I think that if I can merge the two, it’ll make something interesting.”
The first collection, for Spring, is largely based on Abloh’s graphics: a motif of parallel lines, crossing over a “WHITE 13″ logo. (On the name, he says only: “It’s just a bucket for me to put my thoughts into.” The graphic element was inspired by the geometric lines of Mies van der Rohe’s Farnsworth House near Chicago, an inspiration point for the entire collection. Abloh trained as an engineer and an architect before coming to West and, by extension, to fashion.) There are jeans and chinos in unbleached canvas, cut wide through the thigh and skinny in the leg; inflated A-line flannels; and perforated mesh shorts. The clothes have a broken-in, occasionally pulverized look, a far cry from the pristine crispness that’s often prized in streetwear. “It’s not so much about brand-new. It’s about the washed nature of clothes, the relaxedness. That’s what I love, to bring a Ralph [Lauren] take back into streetwear. Streetwear is generally brand-new. It’s fresh out of the box, you wear it once, it becomes trendy, then you get rid of it.” The inspirations he rhapsodizes over are not necessarily predictable ones. “I have this deep infatuation with Montauk and Martha Stewart and Nantucket,” he says. “My parents are from Ghana, and I grew up in Chicago, but for some reason, this lifestyle, shabby chic—it’s grown [on me] since I got older.” The Off-White bag is an updated beach bag; the one shoe made to date is a mesh espadrille. “Outside of the sneaker conversation, I think, is much more interesting,” he says. “No one in the hood is wearing espadrilles.” Continue Reading “Exclusive: Kanye West’s Creative Consigliere Virgil Abloh Launches His Own Fashion Label, Off-White” »
“There’s this sort of mad dash to go from one event to the other,” said Eddie Borgo of Art Basel in Miami Beach. “But that’s not really my style.” What is his beat, however, is splitting his time between the art scene and the street—a testament to his high/low sensibility that’s sure to translate to his Basel capsule collection for The Webster. The range, which debuts exclusively here, will launch on December 4—Basel, day one, naturally.
“The pieces that we ended up rethinking for the collaboration are things that Laure [Heriard Dubreuil, The Webster's owner] wears, or would wear,” said Borgo. And while he’s built a name on selling geometric baubles at relatively accessible price points, this lineup delivers a bit more of a glitzy kick: Each item is plated in “blonde” gold and handset with smoked pavé crystals. “The choker has something like three thousand or thirty-five hundred of them,” he said.
As for how to weather the Basel storm, Borgo offered a few pointers: “I like to keep it a little bit casual. I’ll go to Soho Beach House and have lunch at Cecconi’s. But then, I’ll go down to Fifth Street to eat Haitian food, or over to West Avenue—there’re lots of cool little restaurants. It’s got more of a local scene.” To kill time, he suggests “visiting the home stores in the Design District,” a revitalized grid just north of Miami proper’s Midtown area (and where LVMH has relocated many of its outposts from nearby Bal Harbour). But the key to a successful Basel outing? “Know where you’re going.”
Eddie Borgo x The Webster ranges from $350 to $1,250.