Venezuelan accessories designer Yliana Yepez used something she knows a lot about to raise awareness for the escalating violence in her home country — the handbag.The former model launched Blues by KyKy in 1993, a contemporary handbag line that grew into a retail business in South America as well as in New York. Troubled by increasing unrest, violence and danger in Venezuela, she relocated with her family to New York in 2009 and finally shuttered Blues by KyKy in late 2012 while simultaneously launching a namesake brand.With her new venture, she launched a more luxe, upscale line that would translate better for the New York market. It started to hit retail last August and is now carried in a number of Bloomingdale’s doors as well as Prologue Lifestyle in Toronto.While the designer has been happily adjusting to life with her family in New York, the issues facing her fellow countrymen back in Venezuela continue to concern her. She heard about a new wave of violence and severe protests there over food shortages, the declining health care system and inflation in mid-February. She was in the midst of fashion week festivities, but felt conflicted that no one around her knew what was happening in her country. So she decided to design one of her signature Mini Giovanna bags in the colors of the Venezuelan flag — yellow with red and blue accents — to call attention to the political turmoil.She started Instagramming the bag to get the attention of the industry. The designer plans to donate all proceeds of the sale of the bag to Fundación Sanando, a nonprofit organization that distributes medical supplies and addresses issues concerning health care. The Mini Giovanna Venezuela will retail for $695 at ylianayepez.com.Her collection, all handmade in Italy, consists of totes, clutches, cross-body bags and large and mini backpacks. Most recently, Yliana launched minaudières called Grace in eight satin hues — red, teal, navy, gray, Champagne, black, wine and amethyst — black python-embossed leather and metallic python, all framed with 64 Swarovski crystals. The satin clutch retails for $1,250, the embossed python for $995 and the python clutch for $1,650.
Exclusive: @isabelmarant and @lorealmakeup have teamed up to create a capsule makeup collection. "She is rather natural in the day but doesn't have time to go back home before going out [in the evening] and redo her entire beauty look," said Marant on the 5 products included in the collection, which will launching in September. Read @jenniferbethweil's interview with the designer on WWD.com. #wwdnews #wwdbeauty
After 17 years, Tomas Maier is leaving @bottegaveneta. “I am deeply grateful to him and I personally thank him for the work he accomplished, and for the exceptional success he helped to achieve,” said François-Henri Pinault, head of parent company @kering_official. Head to WWD.com for more on his departure. #wwdnews #wwdfashion (📷: Davide Maestri)
@shaymitchell is no stranger to teaming up with beauty brands, but she’s made her latest partnership official: She’s signed with @buxomcosmetics as global creative brand ambassador, WWD learned exclusively. Mitchell and Buxom will collaborate on campaign development, social media strategy and content and new product and shade development. Read more on WWD.com. #wwdbeauty (📷: @clint_spaulding)
Today we’re at the WWD Retail 20/20 Forum where industry leaders will be talking about the future of shopping for fashion, footwear and beauty. Tune in on Instagram Live at 9 am and 3:30 pm to hear from two of our speakers –– @therealreal’s Rati Levesque and @bandier’s Stephen Ippolito. #wwdsummits (📷: @elizaflorendo)
Seen last night at @coach’s launch party for “Life Coach,” an interactive pop-up in Soho: @joansmalls. Open now, visitors of the pop-up can engage in themes of “creativity and self-expression,” through tarot, carnival games, live performances and art. See the rest of the party pics on WWD.com. #wwdeye (📷: @vnina)
“We figure there’s enough cynicism to go around the world right now let’s go out there and be ourselves, let’s be enthusiastic, let’s have positive energy, which is something I think a lot of people really want and need right now,” said musician @joshgroban ahead of hosting the Tony Awards with @sarabareilles. Read @leighn’s interview with Groban on how he picked his look for the night, his next record and more on WWD.com. #wwdeye #tonyawards (📷: @vnina)
“Rock as an attitude and not a uniform. Street as a style and not just clothing. Sportswear as the new normality,” @paul_surridge said of his first @roberto_cavalli men’s wear collection, previewed here. The British designer joined the brand as the creative director in May 2017, and is gearing up to unveil his debut for the label with a runway show at the Florence Charterhouse on June 13 at #PittiUomo. Head to WWD.com to read more about his collection and see more sneak peek photos. #wwdfashion (📷: @simonelezzi)