West 38th Street in Manhattan pretty much shuts down most nights come quitting time, but Yeohlee Teng had the neighborhood jumping after hours Tuesday.
Several well-wishers who turned up for the opening of her new design space and store at 25 West 38th Street chatted outside to better appreciate the exterior of the multilevel Joerg Schwartz-designed space. The bright red Malaysian Kitchen food truck parked out front was added incentive to go al fresco.
Lest anyone forget Teng’s favorite cause — Save the Garment Center — “Made in Midtown” was emblazoned on the first- and second-floor windows in a display designed by her architect friend Calvin Tsao. Supporters of that cause and of the designer in general included Nanette Lepore, Anna Sui and her brother Bobby, Harold Koda and Leonard Nimoy and his wife, Susan. (Some discussed the Oct. 21 Save the Garment Center noontime rally that will be held at 39th and Broadway.) But there were other clues as to who the guest of honor was, should nonfashion types have wondered what all the commotion was about. “I [Heart] Yeohlee” signs were posted all along the block, thanks to the children of graphic designer Ayse Birsel, who is friendly with Teng and has an office across the street.
“The best part is the realization of a dream. I have wanted forever to be able to have a window to the world and to be able to create a real environment for what I do — for selling, buying, shipping, branding. This is a real opportunity but it is also contextual,” Teng said.
The designer declined to predict first-year sales for her store. Enthusiastic as she was about opening her first store, Teng said she was more motivated by the process of design. Last year Teng was instrumental in recruiting the Design Trust for Public Space to partner with the Council of Fashion Designers of America to create Made in Midtown, a study of the apparel industry’s inner workings and its role in New York City. That initiative made her question, “How can we evolve the discussion for the 21st century? I thought about doing something that would encompass a store, design space, showroom and shipping. It’s what we should be,” she said. “Every person should know where the clothes they buy are made. You know how localized food is popular? Localized clothes should be too.”
“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