NEW RILA MEMBERS: The Retail Industry Leaders Association, a lobby and trade group representing mass merchant's interests in Washington, signed six new members during the year, marking the largest increase in the association's membership since 2003. Among the new apparel retail members are Chico's FAS Inc., J.C. Penney Co. and Northern Reflections Ltd., a Canadian specialty chain. RILA, which includes Wal-Mart Stores and Target Corp. as members, has lobbied this year on issues such as opposing a measure requiring 100 percent scanning of all cargo containers, a bill that would have made it easier for workers to form unions and action pressuring China to revalue its currency or face punitive tariffs on imports. The association supported bilateral trade agreements with Peru, Colombia, Panama and South Korea.
WILLIAMSON DEFENDS AFRICAN DESIGNS: Matthew Williamson on Monday defended his use of African-inspired designs in his spring collection after Ethiopian officials expressed their dismay with some of the pieces. A spokesman for Ethiopia's Intellectual Property Office in Addis Ababa told London's Independent newspaper on Sunday that some of Williamson's dresses with striped borders and simple geometric patterns symbolized Ethiopia's "identity, faith and national pride. Nobody has the right to claim these designs as their own." In a statement, a Williamson spokeswoman said, "Historically, Matthew Williamson bases his collections on the idea of a modern girl who is a global traveler. Her style is in part defined by incorporating many different cultures, traditions and customs. The spring-summer 2008 season was particularly inspired by the idea of modernizing and celebrating certain traditional African fabrics and costumes."
Taking the final spot on the mens’ portion of New York Fashion Week calendar next month will be none other than @tomford. Though he’s shown his men’s wear in New York in the past, this will mark the first time the designer has shown his men’s collection alone during New York Fashion Week: Men’s. His runway show will debut on February 6 at the Park Avenue Armory. #wwdfashion
London-based couture house @ralphandrusso has certainly been in the spotlight, having its dresses worn by @beyonce, Angelina Jolie, Meghan Markle in her engagement photos and more. For couture, Tamara Ralph focused on ornamentation — think: feathers with chain mail, jet embroidery and clusters of pearls and crystals. See the rest of the collection on WWD.com #wwdfashion #couture (📷: @giovanni_giannoni_photo)
Minnie Mouse celebrated her 90th birthday by getting her own star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. For her celebratory luncheon, @coach’s creative director @stuartvevers dressed her in a custom made prairie dress, complete with Vever’s take on the polka dot – black sequined versions – under a cropped motorcycle jacket. The designer also put his own mark on Minnie’s classic red shoes, infusing the color with sparkles and adding some Coach crystals. “We chose colors that were very Minnie and also represented quintessential Coach elements,” said Vevers. #wwdfashion #nationalpolkadotday (📷: George Chinsee)
@nickjonas is unveiling his first-ever apparel collection through a partnership with John Varvatos. The limited-edition capsule, which makes its debut in spring, also marks the first time the designer has collaborated with anyone on a line. “The process in working with Nick is amazing. It’s inspiring to be around someone who is not only connected with the trade that they do, but also with what’s happening in the environment around him, and how that connects to what we do with style,” said Varvatos. (RG: @johnvarvatos) #wwdfashion
@margotrobbie steps out onto the red carpet wearing @miumiu. The actress is nominated for “Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Leading Role” in “I, Tonya” at the #SagAwards. (📷: Stewart Cook) #wwdfashion
For @massimogiorgetti of @msgm, the Nineties are his favorite decade. “They had a huge impact on my personal growth. What I like of the Nineties is that they are not so precise in terms of style as other decades…there was actually a bit of everything,” he said. As seen on MSGM’s Spring 2018 show: tie-dye and a bit of grunge, two styles that are synonymous with the decade #wwdfashion #wwddecades (📷: @kukukuba)