Male figure skaters are upping the fashion ante in Vancouver.
The world champion, Evan Lysacek of the U.S., lined up Vera Wang to design five costumes for his Olympic effort, including a charcoal gray ensemble with feathers from Lemarié, a supplier to Coco Chanel herself.
Wang, a former competitive skater, is uncertain what Lysacek will wear on the ice. She will be rinkside to catch Lysacek’s acrobatic triple and quadruple jumps. The designer skated with him to “Firebird” and “Scheherazade” before setting out to design his costumes.
Referring to how the sport is judged for athleticism, artistry and technicality, Wang said: “You have to swim like Michael Phelps, dive like Greg Louganis but look good, be costumed and stay to the music. It’s kind of your worst nightmare as a designer.”
It’s not just about looking good. One outfit had a leather panel on the midriff, which had to be replaced with a mesh inset to allow for breathability, Wang said. Wrapped silk, a technique that will be featured in her runway next week, proved to be more suitable.
Although U.S. skater Johnny Weir donned Rodarte for a shoot that appeared in the New York Times Magazine, he prefers to design his own competitive attire, a U.S. Figure Skating Association spokeswoman said.
Rachael Flatt, 17, one of the two Americans who will compete in the women’s singles competition, typically wears costumes designed by Julie McDonough. She has competed in contrasting styles such as a crystal-encrusted red dress and a more diaphanous pale blue one with more discreet beading. Flatt already has a partnership with MAC Cosmetics.
Her teammate, 16-year-old Mira Nagasu, whose first name is a Japanese word for future, has been more daring with her outfits, including a ruby-colored sleeveless dress with dramatic black beading and a more playful pink, black-and-white Pop Art one with long white gloves.
“Azzedine has been one of the biggest influences in my life. He has always been such a strong, loving, fatherly figure to me. I call him Papa. His designs are indescribably unique, they are pieces of art. He knew how to make the female form look its loveliest. I have so many memories of him; my favorite might be during my first show with him in Paris. He liked me and he wanted to help me get more work. He called all his friends at Kenzo and Comme des Garcons, and asked them to book me. They said, ‘But she can’t walk!’ And he said, ‘but she has such a great ass!' His friendship and support has been the great privilege of my career. I can't imagine life without him. Repose en paix mon Papa.” - @stephanieseymour tells @wwd. #wwdfashion (📷: @steveeichner) #alaia #azzedinealaia
Azzedine Alaïa, flanked by two of his closest friends, models Stephanie Seymour and Naomi Campbell.
He designed Seymour’s dress for her 1995 wedding to Peter Brant, and treated Campbell (who famously called him Papa), like a daughter. For more on the legendary designer, tap the link in bio. #wwdfashion #alaia #azzedinealaia
Azzedine Alaïa's “I-did-it-my-way” ethos stood out starkly at a time when brands are experimenting with consumer-facing fashion shows, coed formats and trans-seasonal collections – anything to perk up lackluster sales of ready-to-wear in an age of Insta-everything. “It’s not creation anymore. This becomes a purely industrial approach,” the late designer told WWD in an interview last year. “But anyway, the rhythm of collections is so stupid. It’s unsustainable. There are too many collections.” Read more about the iconic designer’s life and work on wwd.com, link in bio. #wwdfashion #azzedinealaia (📷: @WWD Archive, 1986) #alaia
Sneaker reselling app @goat’s latest exhibit, "The Greatest: New York," tells the story of New York's sneaker culture. To celebrate the exhibit, an intimate crowd gathered on Thursday night at the pop-up gallery space, located at Platform in Culver City, to hear guest speaker and illustrator @esymai talk about her own rise in streetwear and women in the business. "For me I'm just someone who is creative. I like to create things," said Chang. #wwdfashion
Azzedine Alaïa, one of the most iconic couturiers of the modern era whose body-con designs defined Eighties fashion, has died in Paris. The diminutive Tunisian-born designer, known for his structured knitted dresses with fitted waists and impeccably cut, figure-hugging second skin silhouettes was deeply admired by his peers, and counted supermodel Naomi Campbell - his adoptive daughter - among his inner circle, one of a gang of glamazons including Farida Khelfa, Carla Bruni and Stephanie Seymour who became ambassadors of his style. (📷: Alexandre Guirkinger) #wwdblast