Monthly Archives: December 2009

Generation B: A Coffee Shop That Is So Much More

The Cape Cod store run by Marjorie Sparrow (above) is a year-round gathering place for the area’s residents.A love of chocolate leads to a shop that is the hub of community.

Out for Spring: Heads

Prada’s new ad is out and it turns out, you won’t be needing your head come spring! The model’s head was halfway lopped off and no one’s quite sure who the girl is (but she does have a lovely pout). You will, of course, be needing a hefty, adorned bag, but that’s a given. Is this a commentary on losing your head for fashion? Or fashion being more important than identity? Something about how what we wear wears us? Oh, this makes our head hurt. (Wah wah.) On that note, we’re off to start our New Year’s Eve pre-celebration. We’ll be back on Monday, and until then, have a great New Year!

The Case of Prada’s Mysterious Model

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Filed Under: heady thoughts, prada

Jeggings Just Won’t Go Away

Whitney Port illustrates how to wear jeggings in May 2009.

Jeggings really took off this year. Fast-fashion retailers like Topshop and H&M picked up on the jeans-and-leggings combination back in spring 2009, and since then, they just haven’t gone away. It didn’t help when celebrities like Beyoncé, Rihanna, and Whitney Port all modeled the painted-on denim look, which seems to flatter very little, despite being worn so much. Now the Oxford English Dictionary announced that the combination word made the book’s new-word wait list, among other terms like “unfriend” and “staycation,” both of which seem so real compared to “jeggings.” It’s not officially in the dictionary until publishers decide that it has become a permanent fixture of the English language, so there is still the possibility that the world will reject these. But with the path they’re on right now, jeggings are heading right in the direction of Uggs: here to stay, forever.

New words of 2009: the year tweetups and snollygosters arrived [Guardian UK]
Simples! Meerkat catchphrase leads tweetups, jeggings and staycations as word of 2009 [Daily Mail UK]

Read more posts by Sharon Clott

Filed Under: trends,

Skin Deep: In Light and Heat, Gadgets Claim to Fight Acne

Not everyone is sold on the new crop of hand-held aesthetic devices for treating blemishes.

Critic’s Notebook: Why So Stodgy,

Uniqlo’s boldly designed Web site.Though late to the party, some luxury labels have joined the digital conversation.

Chris Benz’s Lipstick Primed to Score Big This Spring

Chris & Tell.

Chris Benz is well on his way to making a hit in the beauty department this coming February. That’s when his new lipstick for Lancôme lands in stores, a peachy hue named Chris & Tell that’s been in the works and buzzed about for six months, but that’s also been totally unavailable. Now wait lists are open at Saks Fifth Avenue and Lancôme boutiques for the $29 tube. The color itself looks just as pastel carrot as the color seen on models in his spring show, and the packaging features the designer alongside model and muse Elettra Weidemann. And with Benz buzzing about this single product for a while now, it would be nice if Lancôme decided to expand the collaboration. When peach lips aren’t for everyone, a nice blush will do.

Vain Glorious | Lancôme’s Chris & Tell [T Magazine/NYT]

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Filed Under: beauty marks, beauty, chris benz, elettra weidemann, lancome, makeup

This Weekend’s Sales: Up to 70 Percent Off Reiss; Balenciaga Ends Saturday

• Find up to 70 percent off fall/winter stock at Reiss. 387 W. Broadway, nr. Spring St. (212-925-5707).

• Italian sportswear at Michael is 40 percent off, and the boutique plans to increase markdowns up to 70 percent through February. Through 2/28. 271 W. 4th St., nr. Perry St. (212-206-7722).

• Get 20 to 50 percent off winter merchandise at Smoochie Baby. All winter clothes, shoes, boots, and diaper bags are marked down. Joe’s jeans are $63.95 (originally $79.99) and Vincent snow boots are $38.50 (originally $49.95). Through 1/15. 110 Berry St., nr. N. 7th St., Brooklyn (718-384-3340); M–S (11–7), Su (noon–6).

Balenciaga is offering 40 percent off select merchandise. Short-sleeve silk cowl-back dresses are $469 (originally $795), gray cloque jackets are $1,189 (originally $1,995), and the black leather woven platform booties are $679 (originally $1,145). Through 1/1. 542 W. 22nd St., nr. Tenth Ave. (212-206-0872); daily (11–7).

• Get an additional 40 percent off sale prices at Saks for a total of up to 60 percent off select merchandise. Through 1/4. 611 Fifth Ave., at 50th St. (212-753-4000); M–F (10–8), S (10–7), Su (noon–7).

• Winter merchandise from Alexander Wang, Jason Wu, Thakoon, and many more designers is up to 60 percent off at Kirna Zabête. A leather Alexander Wang vest is $476 (originally $1,100), Balmain belted booties are $474 (originally $1,185), and Givenchy skinny jeans are $198 (originally $405). Ongoing. 96 Greene St., nr. Spring St. (212-941-9656); M–S (11–7), Su (noon–6).

• Get 50 percent off at Versace at the label’s rare after-Christmas sale. Ongoing. 647 Fifth Ave., at 52nd St. (212-317-0224); M–S (10–7), Su (noon–6).

• Select merchandise is 20 to 70 percent off at Norma Kamali. The all-in-one black-and-white striped tunic is just $75, the jersey lifestyle line is 20 to 50 percent off, and assorted parachute styles are up to 70 percent off. Ongoing. 11 W. 56th St., nr. Fifth Ave. (212-957-9797); M–S (10–6), Su (closed).

• Shop Acne Studio’s end-of-season sale, featuring up to 50 percent off their fall/winter merchandise. Men’s and women’s clothes, denim, and accessories are all discounted. Ongoing. 10 Greene St., nr. Canal St. (212-625-2828); M–S (11–7), Su (noon–7).

• Pre-fall and fall/winter 2009 merchandise is up to 50 percent off at Zero + Maria Cornejo. The Alana wool Funnel coat is $667 (originally $1,111), the leather Duo jacket in crackled leather is $995 (originally $1,990), and the silk charmeuse Nella dress is $199 (originally $499). Through 1/5. 33 Bleecker St., nr. Lafayette St. (212-925-3849) and 807 Greenwich St., at Jane St. (212-620-0460); M–S (12–7), Su (12–6).

• Select merchandise is 60 percent off at Pixie Market, both in store and online. Shop discounts on independent brands like Carin Wester, Seneca Rising, and Best Behavior. Through 1/15. 100 Stanton St., nr. Ludlow St. (212-253-0953); daily (noon–8).

• Select merchandise is up to 75 percent off at ABC Carpet & Home, including jewelry, lighting, furniture, rugs, and tabletop accessories. There are also special discounts on products by Tom Dixon, Gus Modern, Geography, and Zollanvari. Through 1/24. Various hours and locations.

Read more posts by Alexandra Martell

Filed Under: fashion calendar, sales, shopping

Manties Simplify for 2010

These are 2009. Calvin’s plain briefs are 2010.

The decade has barely begun to close and already new trends have emerged, at least in men’s underwear. Out are the overlabeled, overdesigned boxer briefs that we’ve seen worn by many a hot model and star. In are tighty-whities. Purists, you may celebrate. Perhaps this new minimalism is a riff off the early nineties, but even the undies back then were laden with labels. What’s even better about the new whities is that they’re economical: Calvin’s come in packs of three for $24.50 at Macy’s! You really can’t beat that.

Of course, this is the opposite of a trend earlier this year that had adorned waistbands with multicolored stripes, neon, patterns, and texture; you name it. And pink manties were enjoying a 62 percent sales boost for a while back in April, as well. But we kind of prefer this new age of simplicity. What about you? Do you like the tighty-whities or do you prefer something more colorful?

Even Less for Men to Think About [NYT]

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Filed Under: daily male, manties, men’s underwear

Hugo Boss to Shutter Cleveland Plant; PETA Honors Tim Gunn

Tim Gunn: Man of the Year.

Hugo Boss announced that it will be closing its plant in Cleveland, Ohio, and plans to lay off 300 workers. The employees will be paid through the end of April. [StyleList]

• PETA named Tim Gunn Man of the Year. Gunn narrated the PETA documentary Fashion Victims this year. [E! Online]

• Taylor Momsen on her style: “I like to wear a lot of baggy things. Like, I buy guys’ clothes, like T-shirts, and I cut them up and wear them loose, but my blazers have to be really fitted. I also like layering things and really short skirts — or showing off my legs.” [Seventeen]

• Because of stormy weather during the weekend before Christmas, online sales grew. [WWD]

• Queen Elizabeth II named several fashion figures as Officers of the Order of the British Empire on her 2009 New Year Honors list, including milliner Stephen Jones, Amanda Wakeley, and Michelle Mone, founder of lingerie company MJM International. [WWD]

• Labels who don’t embrace digital media risk looking like they lag behind the times. Prada and Balenciaga have websites that are very plain, while Burberry launched a whole interactive marketing campaign and allots 40 percent of its marketing budget to digital media. [NYT]

• Prices increased over the last decade. From 1999 to today, the price of a Gucci purse increased 600 percent. [Madison Avenue Spy]

• The mystery of Maison Martin Margiela’s workshop is revealed … through a video. [HuffPo]

• Alexa Chung stars in the Pepe Jeans spring 2010 campaign. [Fashion Verbatim]

Read more posts by Sharon Clott

Filed Under: loose threads, alexa chung, amanda wakeley, burberry, gucci, hugo boss, maison martin marigiela, pepe jeans, peta, prada, queen elizabeth, stephen jones, taylor momsen, tim gunn

Paris Hilton Sued for Copyright Infringement and We’re Forced to Take Her Side

Sigh, Paris, we hope you win.

Normally when we hear someone is suing Paris Hilton, we smirk a bit and move on. But this time we have to actually pause and, bear with us, take her side. Gwyneth Shoes is suing Paris because the insoles of her shoes are too similar to theirs. The insoles. We’d show you what the big ruckus was about, but there weren’t any photos because they’re inside the shoe, where you can’t see them. Paris said on her website, “I personally chose the styling, design, materials and colors for the line and also wanted to make sure it was super-comfortable! Each shoe has a heart-shaped comfort pad sewn in … so you can dance all night long!” So heart-shaped pads are the sole property of Gwyneth Shoes? Gotcha. Because we’ve bought some foot cushions that are rather heartlike, and put them in our shoes. You can buy them, too! (And yes, they are great for dancing all night.)

Gwyneth is asking a judge for an unspecified amount of money and no doubt, a ton of publicity. Sue Paris? Get in the papers! We checked out the shoes and the press they’ve received up until now and while the shoes are fine (though not exactly standing out in the market), the company clearly needed something to give them a boost. And Paris took the fall. And yes, it bothers us immensely to have to defend Paris Hilton. But in the immortal words of Billie Jean, fair is fair.

Insole offense [NYP]

Read more posts by Amina Akhtar

Filed Under: copyfight! paris hilton, gwyneth shoes, lawsuits