LONDON: THAT'S ALL, FOLKS THE LONDON SHOWS CLOSED WITH A GREEK-INSPIRED PERFORMANCE BY SOPHIA KOKOSALAKI, WHILE HUSSEIN CHALAYAN'S COLLECTION GOT SMASHED--LITERALLY.
Sophia Kokosalaki: In the past three seasons, she has made a hit with her hip looks inspired by her native Greece. Kokosalaki stayed on that path for spring 2001 and came up with one of the best shows of the London season. While the designer's draped and fringed styles fit in perfectly with the Eighties mood that's been all over London, she avoided the mistake made by many of her peers by simply nodding to the past rather than traveling back in time. The collection bore her own stamp, emphasizing leather in the form of patchwork tops, slim pants, skirts and fringed waistcoats; silk tulle tops and skirts with patches of leather or cotton and fringe, and softly draped, jersey or tulle skirts, dresses and tops. The colors were earth tones, with the occasional flash of bright green or blush pink. Folk touches appeared in the form of wrapped leather belts or wide straps cinching the ankles of leather pants. But Kokosalaki recognizes that, while a little bit of Grecian formula is fine, too much can be damaging. The designer got a master's degree in fashion from Central Saint Martins two years ago, after obtaining a literature degree in Athens. Her previous collections have been bought by the likes of Henri Bendel in New York, Joseph and Browns Focus. "I always knew I'd do fashion, but five years of studying it is too long," she said. "I wanted to do my own collection because I didn't think that anyone would hire me." She's wrong about that. Ruffo has signed her up to do both the women's and men's collections for its Ruffo Research line, which she'll show during the Milan collections. But it's easy to see why the company was impressed with this relative newcomer when she talks about the need to balance the avant-garde and the commercial. "I like to experiment with new ideas but also to do some classic pieces," Kokosalaki said. "I don't want things to look too overdesigned. Being too experimental can be death."Hussein Chalayan: Ah, the weight of expectation! Retailers and the press were desperately hoping that Chalayan's show on Wednesday night at the Gainsborough Studios in North London would be a stellar event that would help redeem a generally so-so season. But they were disappointed. The presentation seemed to lack the energy and drama of the past three seasons, when the designer has justifiably become one of the most watched around. The crush at the door and the need to eject 50 ticketholders for health and safety reasons didn't help anybody's mood, either, nor did the vertigo-inducing set. And it's always dicey to start a show with a movie, especially a computer-generated story of a murder and rebirth via seeds and clothing. (Yes, it was unclear even to those who were there.) As for the clothes, Chalayan explored many of the themes that he's introduced in previous seasons--volume via draping or ruffles, contrast stitching, prints and fabric insets. There were fresh touches, including the great-looking acid-washed denims and the graph paper checked dresses and tops. But much of it looked too similar, and not even the fact that the models smashed spun-sugar dresses and skirts onstage had the same impact as some of his former theatrics. Recently, Chalayan has struck the perfect balance between his conceptual ideals and the need to produce wearable women's wear. But this show seemed to represent a half-step backward to the time when he let the concept overwhelm the clothes.
Around Town: London had so many new designers, off-schedule and off-off schedule shows this season, that trying to keep track of them was like being an air-traffic controller at Heathrow. The effort often wasn't worth it, either, since many of the new flock can produce only one good jacket or nice skirt at most out of a collection that rivals Giorgio Armani's in breadth. But there were a few designers who stood out, both on the runways and at the London Designer Exhibition at the Natural History Museum. The best pieces included Jessica Ogden's swirl dresses and skirts, showcased in her cute ballroom dance of a show; the draped and pinned satin dresses of Roland Mouret, who was showing officially for the first time; Godfrey's cyber-printed skirts and tops; the two wrap mackintosh dresses trimmed in leather at Robert Cary Williams, and the red suede jackets and skirts at Anthony Symonds. At the exhibition, the standouts were the accessories, including the gold jewelry at Lara Bohinc 107; the bright, geometric acrylic necklaces and bracelets at Scott Wilson; Samantha Heskia's seashell-trimmed bags; Ginka's Op Art-inspired print hats, bags and scarves, and Orla Kiely's leather sampler bags, along with her floral print tops. Sara Berman's Fifties-style corduroy skirts and jackets with poodle embroidery and Brach & Brach's Turkish print swimwear were also strong.
“What he has done at Vuitton is really exceptional,” said @gameofthrones’ actress Gwendoline Christie on @mrkimjones’ final show for @louisvuitton. “He has rebooted luxury in terms of making it commercial, viable and contemporary. And most importantly artistic. He has never compromised his artistic vision for the sake of commodity.” (📷: @zefashioninsider)
After seeing a demand for men’s wear from its customers, British contemporary women’s wear label @ariesarise has added a men’s wear component and will launch a unisex collection with @mrporterlive. The 20-piece collection includes jackets, denim, logo T-shirts and more with deconstructed ‘90s vibes. Set to launch on January 18, you can shop the pieces on Aries’ website and on mrporter.com. #wwdfashion
“And so spending so much time with a character who thinks like that, inevitability you try and analyze yourself and go back and think about your own demons and dark chapters that you had in your life,” says @thedanielbruhl of his role in TNT’s “The Alienist.” The show, set in the Gilded Age of New York, also stars Dakota Fanning and Luke Evans. Head to WWD.com to read about how 39-year-old Brühl prepared for the role and why he thinks the show is so relevant to today #wwdeye ( 📷: @Eriktanner)
Now that Celine Dion’s collection has topped $10 million in sales, the pop superstar, fashion icon and newly-minted industry player is eyeing growth in Asia. Read the full report by @tiffanyap, link in bio. #wwdnews #celinedion
“My personal philosophy to beauty is paying attention to oneself. I love to be outdoors, lots of fresh air, trying to take care of yourself as best you can. I always notice that comes through,” says Felicity Jones, the global face of @shiseido-owned @cledepeaubeauteus, which launches today. Head to WWD.com to read more about the actress’ love for beauty and how she prepared for her new role in “The Basis of Sex,” playing the young Ruth Bader Ginsburg. #wwdbeauty (📷: @dandoperalski)
Among the familiar faces at @off____white’s show was a surprise figure: Japanese artist @takashipom, pictured here on Wednesday morning. Other show-goers included @jerrylorenzo, who spoke about his upcoming project: a @nike collaboration for back to school, with designs inspired by his childhood on the West Coast. Sitting in the front row were Future, Don Crawley, @miguel and more. See the rest of the photos on WWD.com #wwdeye (📷: Stephane Feugere)
According to @laurentsai, former “Terrace House: Aloha State” cast member, she didn’t know she was auditioning for the Japanese version of “Real World.” “I was telling a couple of my friends and someone’s like, ‘That sounds a lot like Terrace House.’ I was like, ’No it can’t be.’” Turns out, it was. But Tsai isn’t just a reality star — she’s an illustrator who has worked with Starbucks Japan and most recently, she’s dipping her toes into the fashion world. Head to WWD.com to read about her time on the show, modeling and her art. #wwdeye (📷: @danieldorsa)
More changes are coming to New York Fashion Week: Beginning with the spring 2019 collection, @alexanderwangny will move his New York show to June from September, adopting a biannual schedule with collections shown in June and December. Additionally, the @cfda is planning for an official summer/winter fashion season taking place as soon as June and December 2018. Read more about the upcoming changes on WWD.com. #wwdnews #wwdfashion (📷: @slovekinpics)