MORRIS ON THE MOVE: Although he closed his Artwear store and gallery this month, Robert Lee Morris plans to continue promoting accessories industry talent.
"A lot of people in the industry have had a very difficult time coming to terms with the closing and, ultimately, I ended up giving everyone a pep talk and telling them that it was a positive step for me," said Morris, who had operated Artwear -- a venue for up-and-coming jewelry designers -- from 1977 until its closing, Jan. 9.
Morris continues to operate his signature New York boutique at 409 West Broadway, near the Artwear site, and has projects such as accessories licensing agreements on his agenda. But he is also staying involved in boosting public awareness of accessories designers, this time in a project for the Council of Fashion Designers of America.
Morris is producing the CFDA's first accessories resource book, a guide that will include information and merchandise shots from the 40 accessories members of the organization, who are funding the book.
"We're hoping something like this will bring national awareness to some of the real hidden talents we have in the CFDA, accessories designers who may not have such high profiles outside New York," said Morris.
Morris credited handbag designer Carlos Falchi as being instrumental in coordinating activities such as the book and also an accessories trend presentation that will be shown April 10 at the Josephine Pavilion in Bryant Park as part of the New York fall collections.
"Carlos is one of the members who has always been active in rallying the efforts of the accessories designers," Morris explained. "When the idea for the resource book came up, I kind of got recruited."
WINNING WAYS: Two trendsetting designers, Isaac Mizrahi and Judith Leiber, are receiving much recognition this year as leaders in the accessories field.
Mizrahi is being lauded for his footwear by the Italian Trade Commission and the Italian Footwear Manufacturers Association, which have jointly named him the designer recipient of the 1994 Michelangelo Shoe Award. The sportswear designer is relatively new to footwear, having launched his line only last November.Mizrahi, along with such award-winners as dancer and choreographer Tommy Tune, will be feted at the Michelangelo Awards ceremony Feb. 1 at New York's Metropolitan Museum of Art.
In November, Leiber will be recognized by the Fashion Institute of Technology, which will present a 30-year retrospective of her designs. Some of the nearly 3,000 designs she created during her three decades in business will be on view."To be able to see many of these favorites together should be fun," she said. As reported, Leiber will also receive the CFDA's Lifetime Achievement Award at that organization's annual gala next month in New York. "I've been lucky to have received honors from other organizations in the past," Leiber said. "But the CFDA's Lifetime Achievement Award is very special."
Leiber had pulled out of the CFDA in 1992, the year Karl Lagerfeld was given the accessories award for his Chanel collections. At that time, she said she felt the organization didn't do enough to recognize American accessories designers. She has since rejoined the CFDA, but declined to say exactly when she did so.
OROTON SELECTS SOMERS: Oroton U.S., a division of Australian handbag firm Oroton International, has named Steven Somers president and chief executive officer.
Somers started with the company, which has its U.S. headquarters in New York, on Friday. The post of president had been vacant for more than a year, and Stephen Callister, managing director of the parent company, had been overseeing U.S. operations.
Somers was group vice president of Crazy Horse and Villager, both divisions of Liz Claiborne. Prior to that, he had been at Federated Department Stores for 18 years, and held several posts including chairman and ceo of I. Magnin, before leaving in 1987.
Oroton's 1993 worldwide volume for the fiscal year that ended last June came to about $75 million. It is the licensee for the Anne Klein, Oscar de la Renta and Pringle of Scotland handbag lines, and also produces its own Oroton, Fiorelli and Ken Done brands.
As one of the most recognizable models in the world, Christy Turlington Burns has an insider’s view of the fashion industry and the allegations of sexual harassment swirling around it. “I can say that harassment and mistreatment have always been widely known and tolerated in the industry. The industry is surrounded by predators who thrive on the constant rejection and loneliness so many of us have experiences at some point in our careers,” Turlington told WWD, along with her suggestions for how the modeling world should protect younger women and men. Read more on WWD.com. Link in bio. (📷: Tony Palmieri) #wwdnews
@asics America has tapped a new brand ambassador: famed DJ/record producer @steveaoki. This initiative is intended to set the tone for the new brand identity and philosophy and will include partnerships with influencers and in-store and off-line activations that will continue into next year. This is Asics’ most significant marketing effort in two decades, and is expected to attract younger consumers to the brand. #wwdfashion
24-year-old Jean Prounis is redefining the rules of jewelry. Formerly a studio assistant to Jemima Kirke and a design apprentice at Ghuran, she focuses on handcrafted subtleties and ancient goldsmithing techniques. “There was a really sterile feel in the environment and I wanted to have jewelry with character that shapes how you wear it everyday,” Prounis said. Each piece is hand made in New York, either by Prounis or three other jewelers in the district. #wwdfashion
“These collections continue to build on that vision, empowering differently abled adults to express themselves through fashion,” said @tommyhilfiger of his line of adaptive apparel, which launches today. The line consists of 37 men’s and 34 women’s styles based upon the pieces from the spring Tommy Hilfiger sportswear collection. #wwdnews
“Stranger Things” is getting a new cast member for season 2. Meet @sadiesink_, the 15-year-old who will be joining the Netflix series for its new season. You may recognize her from “The Glass Castle” with Brie Larson and Woody Harrelson, but the Texas native’s next role goes in an entirely different direction. She describes her character, Max, as “a rough and tumble skater girl [who] becomes friends with the boys at school.” The second season debuts on October 27. (📷: @jgreenery) #wwdeye
Amid the Harvey Weinstein controversy, there’s another sector that’s being put under the spotlight for sexual abuse: the modeling industry. While rumors about abuse and sexual harassment of female and male models — and the photographers, agents and others who perpetrated it — have circulated within the fashion world for years, model @cameronrussell started posting stories from models on Instagram last week about abusive situations they’ve encountered — from sexual harassment and molestation to attempted rape. Over 75 have weighed in so far. Read more on WWD.com. Link in bio. #wwdnews
To celebrate its 16th anniversary, @dylanscandybar tapped designers and celebrities to create mosaics out of candy. The mosaics will be auctioned off to support the philanthropic cause of each participant’s choice. Pictured here is the mural created by @aliceandolivia's Stacey Bendet. For a first look at some of the other artwork being unveiled tonight, go to WWD.com. #wwdeye
The annual Veuve Clicquot Polo Classic in Pacific Palisades this weekend drew Kate Hudson, Tracee Ellis Ross, Laura Dern and more. See pictures of the star-studded event on WWD.com. (📷: @chelsealaurenla) #wwdeye
In his new book “Hollywood Royale,” Andy Warhol’s Protégé Matthew Rolston celebrates the Eighties revival of Hollywood glamour. Featuring more than 100 portraits taken by Rolston from 1977 to 1993, the book contains photos of icons like Michael Jackson, Cyndi Lauper, and @drewbarrymore, pictured here in 1991. “Hollywood Royale,” out today, will be accompanied by an exhibition opening at Los Angeles’ Fahey/Klein Gallery on March 1. #wwdeye