NEW YORK — Another day, another development at Bill Blass.
Blass’ women’s wear creative director, Peter Som, and NexCen Brands Inc. appear to have come to a solution — even if that could just be a short-term Band-Aid.
On Monday, the beleaguered parent company of Bill Blass issued a statement, saying: “NexCen has confirmed that Peter Som, creative director of Bill Blass women’s wear, has not resigned, and in lieu of a runway show, will be presenting a spring 2009 collection to retailers only. NexCen very much looks forward to working with Peter as his continued creative direction during this period of transition is important to the future of the brand and its sales process.”
The company would not elaborate on the statement, which left one crucial point open — whether Som will continue to design for Blass after the spring presentation.
“Peter is committed to staying at Bill Blass for now and completing the spring 2009 collection,” said Elana Posner, Som’s business partner. “We are hoping that the right buyer will come along and the sale of the brand will be resolved soon. We believe in the partnership, but the future will depend on so many undetermined factors.”
Issues between Som and Blass’ owners have been brewing for a while, and cash-strapped NexCen has struggled to support the Collection business and pay some of the talent Som has brought in to turn his efforts into a success. That, however, could change should NexCen be able to sell the Blass brand to a company that is willing to support Som’s designs. As reported, Som would remain on board should NexCen be able to sell the brand to the right firm. Among those said to be interested in the Blass brand are Windsong Brands LLC and Hilco Consumer Capital, as well as Blass jeanswear licensee Designer Licensing Holdings, Iconix Brand Group and Phillips-Van Heusen Corp.
NexCen is said to be close to a deal, which could explain the lack of clarity regarding Som’s future at the brand. Som could not be reached for comment Monday.
“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