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April 20 2014

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104 posts tagged "Tom Ford"

Runway to Red Carpet: Holiday Cheer and an Unstoppable Queen

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Kate Middleton, Beyonce, and Ziyi Zhang

While most of the celebrity set took a break from the red carpet to celebrate the holidays, a few A-listers stepped out in their sartorial best for both intimate seasonal fetes and special happenings this week. On the holiday-party front, Jessica Chastain attended the Audi Celebrates the Holidays and Snow Polo event in Aspen last Saturday in a long-sleeve black Emilio Pucci frock with lace detailing on the bodice. On Christmas Day, the Duchess of Cambridge paired a small green Gina Foster hat with a blue-and-green tartan coat by her favorite designer, Alexander McQueen, for mass with the royal family in Sandringham, England. The following day, Rose Byrne made a splash in a water-printed Dion Lee Resort ’14 dress at a Boxing Day shopping event in Sydney.

With the American awards season nearly here, China hosted its biennial Huabiao Film Awards on Thursday in Beijing, where Ziyi Zhang accepted the best actress trophy in a long black lace gown embellished with brightly colored details from Valentino’s Spring ’14 runway. On Saturday evening, Beyoncé rocked Tom Ford at the release party and screening for her new self-titled album in New York. Her Spring ’14 minidress was covered with fractured black mirrors. Naturally, she paired it with matching thigh-high boots. While the album was quietly released without warning, it bowed as Billboard’s No. 1 a few days after its debut, proving that anything Queen Bey touches turns to gold—or, in her record’s case, platinum.

Photos: Geoffrey Robinson / Rex / REX USA; Kevin Mazur / WireImage; ChinaFotoPress / Getty Images

Behind Beyoncé’s “Yonce”: Supermodels, Sex, and Supreme

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Beyonce
Beyonce, Jourdan Dunn, Joan Smalls, and Chanel Iman

From the time she launched her new, self-titled album at 12:01 a.m.—without any warning, press, leaks, or buildup buzz—today has been the Day of Beyoncé. The new Beyoncé features fourteen tracks and a full seventeen videos. One in particular has caught the attention of the Bey Hive: “‘Yonce,” which stars not only Bey, but also three of the fashion world’s top models—Jourdan Dunn, Joan Smalls, and Chanel Iman—in an homage of sorts to George Michael’s famous supermodel-filled “Freedom ’90″ video. Director, video artist, and co-head of creative at Supreme, Ricky Saiz, shot the video over two days in Brooklyn. “When I started to propose ideas and put together a visual narrative, Beyoncé responded really well,” he said. “She was open to me pushing a bit, and to trying new things, and I didn’t want it to be overproduced. I didn’t want a performance video, which is like jazz hands. This was more like an upskirt.”

“Upskirt” does set the racy tone. Saiz was inspired by Daido Moriyama’s erotic photographs as well as the iconic George Michael Video—and styled by Karen Langley, the cast dons an array of revealing outfits, including a black Anthony Vaccarello dress (for Dunn) and a bondage-inspired molded bodysuit from Tom Ford’s tenure at YSL (for Beyoncé).

Here, Saiz talks to Style.com about the singer’s most smoldering video to date, what it was like working with the one of the world’s biggest stars and a trio of supermodels, and that time on set when Smalls decided to lick Beyoncé’s breast.

How did you come to work with Beyoncé on this in the first place?
It was very all of a sudden, actually. I have a working relationship with Todd Tourso, her creative director. We worked together on the 2011 Lady Gaga for Supreme campaign that we put together. He called me out of the blue and said they wanted me to do a video for them. Four days later, we did it. It was very fast, all of a sudden, and fun. I think Beyoncé is an incredible artist—she has ability, reach, and doesn’t compromise. She’s always kind of done her own thing. But the project that they approached me with was very much in my lane, and my aesthetic. If they had me do a big, drawn-out, cinematic production kind of video, I probably wouldn’t have done as good of a job.

What was the brief that Beyoncé and her team gave you? What were they asking for?
They came with a pretty broad concept. They had the models in line, and wanted something pretty simple. The brief was in the direction of George Michael’s “Freedom” video. And I kind of took it from there. I felt like doing something really simple, handheld, lo-fi. It felt like an interesting way of doing it. It could come off so bland if filmed the other way. And again, I wanted to explore her transgressive imagery. Things that were sexual and erotic, but not cliché. I didn’t want to see Beyoncé with her tongue out, you know?

How is this display of sexuality different from what Miley Cyrus does in “Wrecking Ball”?
Beyoncé is so sexy without having to do anything. I felt like she didn’t need to be wet, or need to twerk. It was more about a mature sense of eroticism, like what Madonna expressed in “Human Nature” in the nineties. A lot of the inspiration came from still photography. Like Daido Moriyama’s really tight close-ups of fishnets—things that felt abstract but still resonate.

What was Beyoncé’s reaction to your creative process? Was she very hands-on?
She’s incredible. She was very hands-on, and everything was a collaborative effort. I think once she saw my aesthetic and references in the styling and art direction, she had full trust in my ideas for the video. I’ve never worked with anyone that gave so much, and was so willing to try new things. For example, the styling; Karen Langley brought this Tom Ford [for YSL] molded-breast bodysuit with the pierced nipple, fishnets, and things like that. It was exactly the references that I was looking for, but in my head I was like, Yeah, right. We’re never getting Bey to put that on. And Beyoncé’s so incredible, she was like, “Let’s do it.” I don’t think anyone’s seen her like that. She was into it.

Do you have a sense of why Beyoncé tapped Jourdan, Joan, and Chanel for this project?
They came to me with these three women in mind. It just felt very of-the-moment, very iconic. You know, they’re all supermodels, they stand on their own, they’re such powerful women. And when brought together, it created a whole dynamic. We definitely weren’t trying to put together a “girl group.” But the chemistry on set was amazing. People just came in really excited about the project, and I tried to keep things loose and fun. I wanted you to see something you maybe weren’t supposed to see.

The “Freedom” video worked because the girls were supermodelséthe first generation of so-called supers, in fact. Do you see these women as the new generation?
Absolutely. I think that in addition to being extremely beautiful, they have their own characters, and their own personalities that they brought to the table. They were anything but casted models.

Did you have any favorite moments on set?
When Joan Smalls licked Beyoncé’s boob. I’m probably not going to forget that anytime soon. To be honest, I didn’t even see it happen. I was in between monitors. I saw it in playback. My director of photography came up to me and was like, “Oh, my God, did you see that?” It was totally spontaneous. [Smalls] just went in. It was fun. We had a good time.

Buckling Up for Thanksgiving and Beyond

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BeltsNew It bags and It shoes regularly enter the fashion orbit, but this season’s unexpected must-have accessory is the humble—or not so humble—belt. Back in September, we clocked Céline’s Thanksgiving-appropriate pilgrim buckle on Anna Dello Russo, Giovanna Battaglia, and Elina Halimi, and noticed plenty of statement-making cinching on the Spring runways, too. Michael Kors, Haider Ackermann, and Tom Ford created a wasp-waist silhouette with classic men’s leather belts, while other designers assumed a more-is-more approach. Lanvin’s Alber Elbaz featured sweet cummerbunds decorated with bedazzled hearts; Peter Dundas sent out medallion-spangled bands worthy of a boxing champion at Emilio Pucci; and Vera Wang was snapped wearing an ultrawide style that swallowed up her entire torso.

Here, just in time for Thanksgiving viewing, a slide show of our favorite waist-cinchers.

Katy England Would Rather Just Get on With It

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Katy england

Although you’ve definitely seen her influence, you may not have heard of Katy England. She isn’t one for the street-style paps or the blogosphere—probably because she’s too busy styling the collections of such talents as Riccardo Tisci, Tom Ford, and Marios Schwab to stop and strike a pose. During her twenty-year-and-counting career, England has built close relationships with Dazed & Confused and AnOther magazines (she previously held the role of fashion director at the latter), and served as the creative director of Alexander McQueen’s studio from the mid-nineties to the mid-naughties. If you’re still not impressed, we should tell you that she’s styled covers and spreads with photographers such as Rankin, Nick Knight, and Willy Vanderperre, and currently works with one Kate Moss on her much-talked-about Topshop range.

England has just released Made in England, a short film, created in collaboration with Vauxhall, that focuses on the many facets of contemporary British youth culture. Here, the stylist talks to Style.com about her directorial debut, McQueen, and why fashion is for the young.

Your film is all about British youth culture, which has historically played a huge role in British fashion. Do you think that youth culture now is equally as influential as it was during the punk or New Romantic/club kid eras?
I don’t feel there’s the same energy. It’s just so different, but I’m not young anymore. Teenagers today think they’re doing the most exciting things, just like we did at our age. It’s all relative. But I think designers—all of us—get inspired by young people and what they’re doing. I certainly do. Real fashion, high fashion, is from the kids and for the kids. We can all look stylish, and we can all dress really well and be on trend, but real fashion, as I would call it, is for the young. I work with Riccardo Tisci on his menswear collections; he is so inspired by what young kids are doing worldwide. And I’m sure Marc Jacobs does as well. I think there’s a certain bunch of them that are really young at heart.

What do you think of the increasing focus being placed on London’s young talents?
I used to work for Alexander McQueen, and when he took his position at Givenchy many, many years ago, it was the beginning of designers being approached by big houses. We were just kids—new kids on the block at the house of Givenchy—and we didn’t know what to do, and we didn’t get much support. I think now it’s become much more familiar—it happens all the time. And it’s great, but [the young designers] all need to have support around them, whether it’s great stylists, great people helping them research, great technicians…. I think these jobs are huge, and they’re a lot of pressure for the kids. If they’re supported, they’ll be fine, because they have a huge amount of energy, but it’s so tough. I did it with Alexander McQueen, unsupported. And it was harsh—really harsh.

Do you think it’s a positive thing that big houses are tapping young talents, and that these important companies are investing in new designers?
Sometimes I think it’s too much too soon, and I think there’s a huge value in learning in a smaller way. I work with Marios Schwab, who has a very small company in London. He’s been doing it a long time, and he’s such a talent. Bit by bit, he keeps going, and I hope that it will happen for him in the end. And when it does, my god will he be set up and ready for it, because he’s learned his craft. You have to learn your craft. You can’t just catapult. You’re going to be better for it if you learn the hard way.

Would you prefer to have youth or wisdom?
I’d love the energy of youth. I love being around people with that energy. I really feed off of that. But it’s tough for kids now. When I started in the fashion industry, it was so openly creative and you were not restricted in any way. Kids don’t have that opportunity so much anymore, because fashion is much more of a business now. Even with photo shoots, the clients are so much more powerful, because of digital photography—they can watch the shoot taking place. That was never the case before, and they had to put trust in a team of creatives to book the right people and get on with it. It was literally so free, and you would hope that you captured it, and you’d be so excited to see the film in the end. The creative process is very spontaneous, and it needs to be spontaneous. I think that we’ve lost a lot of that spontaneity. Continue Reading “Katy England Would Rather Just Get on With It” »

Public School Takes the CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund’s Top Honor

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Dao-yi Chow, Maxwell Osborne

Tonight in New York, industry insiders and supporters such as Julianne Moore, Christina Ricci, and Diane von Furstenberg gathered at Spring Studios for the CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund’s annual gala. Earlier this year, the decade-old initiative, which provides financial support and mentorship for emerging fashion talents, selected ten semi-finalists for its 2013 prize. And this evening, following a speech by Tom Ford, on-the-rise menswear label Public School, designed by Dao-Yi Chow and Maxwell Osborne, took the top honor. “We’ve been having such a great year, we were happy just to be here with you,” said the designers during their acceptance speech—and they weren’t kidding about the great year bit. The pair also took the 2013 Swarovski Award for Menswear at the CFDAs in June. “To say we’re tremendously humbled is an understatement,” added the winners, who were chosen by a committee that included Reed Krakoff, David Neville, Marcus Wainwright, Anna Wintour, and Jenna Lyons, among others.

The runners up, too, expressed their excitement. “Being in this room and on this stage [with Tom Ford and Julianne Moore], I want to stay here forever,” said second runner up, jewelry designer Mark Alary. Juan Carlos Obando, who was named as the first runner up, offered some heartfelt words of gratitude. “The word thank you is very small. I found a word that is really true. It’s I love you, to all the judges.”

Photo: Carly Otness/BFAnyc.com