DIAMOND DAIQUIRI: British artist Marc Quinn, who used his own frozen blood for a sculpture, has been working with materials that are more enticing.
One of his latest projects is a strawberry-shape pendant, cast in 18-karat white gold and studded with more than 600 diamonds. The pendant, Frozen Strawberry 2007, was a commission from London gallerist Louisa Guinness, who challenges artists to create jewelry. The work was to be unveiled during a private viewing April 20 at Ben Brown Fine Arts in London's Mayfair. Quinn has made 10 strawberries, which will retail at 24,000 pounds, or $47,520, each.
"I like the form of the strawberry for a number of reasons, mostly because it's like a heart," said Quinn. "The strawberry is a refreezing of one of my frozen sculptures, only in another medium."
The pendant is molded from a real fruit. Quinn removed each of the strawberry's 270 seeds. In addition, he dotted the strawberry with diamond clusters made to look like bits of ice. Each piece was handmade in England, signed, numbered and presented in a bespoke leather box with a Perspex lid.
"The idea is that when the strawberry isn't worn, it can be displayed as an art object," said Guinness, who has commissioned jewelry from artists such as Sam Taylor-Wood, Antony Gormley and Anish Kapoor.
Her latest project was with Tim Noble and Sue Webster, who created a pair of silver and ruby cuff links that sold for 850 pounds, or $1,683. Guinness' method is simple. She approaches the artist, and he or she comes up with a jewelry idea.
"It's about taking sculpture to another scale and asking the artist to create a portable sculpture," said Guinness, adding that the buyers so far have been mostly art collectors. "We don't really consider it jewelry — it's more sculpture in another realm."
LET THE MUSIC PLAY: Swarovski and Philips are unveiling their first collaborative project called Active Crystals, a line of earphones and USB memory keys made of silver and transparent crystal.
The collection includes four pairs of earphones — with ethereal names like Space, Icon, Mirage and Amazone — each containing fewer than 20 grams of faceted crystal to ensure comfort and fit. The USB keys, in four models resembling either hearts or locks, retain as many as 1,000 photos or 250 songs and require a user password to protect the most sensitive information.Active Crystals will be available in department stores, electronic retail stores and Swarovski stores in August. Until then, French concept stores June and Colette will be showing a preview of the collection and two exclusive USB locks produced in limited edition.
Bouffant Baubles: Lucas Design International, the Los Angeles fashion jewelry firm that produces Rocawear, Playboy and Disney Couture jewelry, has signed to create a line of jewelry and small accessories inspired by the movie "Hairspray" starring John Travolta and Queen Latifah. Costume and sterling silver pieces will be available in signature Hairspray motifs, including a pendant in the shape of a bouffant wig and a spray can motif.
"'Hairspray' is gearing up to be one of the biggest family [films] of the summer, with a huge fan base among preteens and teens," said LDI creative director Jason Landver, "so, we're tapping a whole new demographic with this collection."
The costume line, which includes 40 styles, will retail from $6 to $20 at stores such as Claire's, Icings and Limited Too. The 15-piece silver collection will retail from $25 to $100 at Kitson in Los Angeles and on the Web site newline.com.
GOOD TIMES: The fates are smiling on Elaine Turner. A group of investors purchased a significant minority ownership position in her namesake accessories company two months ago. Several of the principals and the founder of a well-known, privately held asset management firm in Houston are looking to turn the seven-year-old handbag line into a $15 million company in the next three to five years.
"We started thinking about outside capital a year and a half ago," said Turner, president and creative director. "We knew we wanted to take it to the next level, and that couldn't happen with our inside group. We solicited different people and met a local group that was immediately interested in the accessible luxury handbag market. We're a newer, smaller brand trying to compete at a higher level, and we feel strongly about positioning and the brand."
For fiscal 2007, Elaine Turner is projecting a 120 percent sales increase from last year. The brand — with straw totes, leather shoppers and embossed python clutches wholesaling from $69 to $275 — opened a 1,900-square-foot flagship in February in Dallas' NorthPark Center. It also generates a strong retail business nationwide in specialty and department stores like Bloomingdale's and Nordstrom.Turner plans four to six new stores during the next two years in Dallas, Scottsdale, Ariz., and Palm Beach, Fla. She has strong footing in the southern destination markets, but in an effort to bring business north into doors like Scoop and Bergdorf Goodman, she's opening a showroom on May 1 in Manhattan. The brand is also revamping its e-commerce Web site and will launch a small leather goods collection for fall.
WINSTON WEST: Harry Winston will open a 1,500-square-foot boutique at South Coast Plaza in Costa Mesa, Calif., in the first quarter of 2008, joining David Yurman, Cartier and Tiffany & Co. in the luxury shopping center.
"It's an amazing brand," said Deborah Gun Downing, executive director of marketing for the mall. "It belongs here."
EXCLUSIVE: @tomford is opening its first-ever beauty store. The boutique, which opens November 20 in London’s Covent Gardens, was designed with the over-the-top glam Ford is known for. Read the full story on WWD.com, link in bio. #wwdbeauty #wwdnews (📷: Simon Wagner) #TomFordBeauty
New York-based DJ @harleyvnewton threw a party to celebrate the holiday collection of her dress and pajama line @hvn at the Ladurée Beverly Hills. It Girls @katebosworth, @rashidajones and more joined in on the fun, which included cocktails, croque monsieur sandwiches and a photo booth. #wwdfashion (📷: Owen Kolasinski/BFA.com)
For the holidays, @Burberry partnered with 20-year-old artist @blondeymccoy on a series of three outdoor murals in downtown Manhattan. The murals are McCoy’s interpretation of a Christmas eve party, the idea of charity and the spirit of family. His third mural, pictured here, is the most personal. The image depicts McCoy’s grandparents and father in London’s Trafalgar Square in the Seventies. “My work often features lots of sentimental objects.” #wwdeye
For spring 2018, designers applied bold colors and cartoonish motifs on everything from sneakers and belts to key chains. See all the top men’s accessories trends on WWD.com. #wwdtrends (📷: George Chinsee; Prop Styling by @rnasti; Market Editor: @luiscampuzano)
The @dior-sponsored @guggenheim international gala pre-party has a history of drawing cool-girl musical acts to serenade the crowd –– and last night was no exception. @haimtheband performed songs both new and old, and lured a star-studded audience with the likes of Rebecca Hall, Kate Mara, Mamoudou Athie and more. #wwdeye (📷: @lexieblacklock)
In a partnership between the @metopera and the @englishnationalopera, “Marnie” was born. The opera, with costumes sponsored by @mrporterlive, is an adaptation of the 1961 thriller by Winston Graham. Arianne Phillips, who created the costumes, is no rookie: She’s styled Madonna for her tours and created costumes for a myriad of films in the past. Read WWD’s interview with Phillips, where she talks about her inspiration for the opera’s costumes on WWD.com #wwdfashion
@barneysnyc took a different approach to their holiday windows this year. Instead of Christmas decor, Barneys tapped @thehaasbrothers to tell a story of positivity, gratitude and inclusivity via heartwarming silliness and humor. “It’s about kids and it’s about coming together and being family and loving each other,” said Simon Haas. #wwdfashion (📷: @joshuascottphoto)
Beauty influencer @kandeejohnson makes her foray into hair care with a collaboration with @ogx_beauty — making it the first time that OGX has teamed up for a product creation. The collab includes shampoos and conditioners in three scents. At 39 and a mom, Johnson is a different profile than the emerging social media stars, but is considered one of the pioneers of the digital beauty influencer world. Read WWD’s interview with her on wwd.com, including the strangest beauty product she’s ever tried #wwdbeauty