September 12, 2009
ATTENTION: YOU MUST CLICK THE IMAGE TO SEE THE ENTIRE THING. I AM WORKING ON THIS PROBLEM.
I know I have been gone forever. But I have been super super busy with the beginning of school, shopping for classes and textbooks, meetings, and the most important event of all Fashion’s Night Out, which I am going to tell you ALLL about right now.
So I am on the 5 o’clock bus to New York, because of course I had class, and there is a lot of traffic and it starts to rain, which I am dreading because I forgot my umbrella. Thank goodness we get there and it is not raining.
I didn’t get to NY until 7:45pm, so I needed to do a quick edit to my itinerary I crossed off everything except Bergdorf Goodman where I had to see Andrea Leon Talley.
So I catch the F train and get down to 5th avenue and the place is buzzing. I have never seen New York like this. People weren’t rushing to work or rushing anywhere but to the next store to see the festivities. People are dressed up in their best, most fashion forward clothing. Men in ball gowns, ladies in feathers and African style face paint, just the works!
So I get to Bergdorf’s and the line is wrapped around the building. So of course I am more than happy to wait because I have to get it, have to. So while I am standing in line I get the pleasure of standing behind two models and their friends. Hearing them complain about waiting kind of ruffled my feathers because I would do almost anything just to be apart of this whole experience and they just seemed ungrateful.
So while they were babbling on and on I see Yeohlee Tang. Now you cannot miss her tinsel-like grey hair anywhere. I am absolutely stunned to see not only a designer I wrote about, but also a designer period. So I do the whole fan thing and I am like “ oh –my-god Yeohlee, hi I love you” and she is like “hi.” In a really sweet way of course. So I am so happy that I saw her I forgot to get a picture, which sucks. So after she leaves I try to turn around and talk about it to the girls behind me and of course they don’t even know who she is, no one did. I am just stunned. Who are these people that do not know Yoehlee, she is like a celebrity to me.
Anyways while I was waiting in line I took these pictures of the window displays at Bergdorf. They are just as amazing as I told you about in my previous post right?
So I finally get in and there is a huge push and shove thing going on. The guards on the outside are much, much nicer than the ones inside; they are kind of dealing with us like we are criminals for wanting to come in the store. “ Hurry up, keep moving, do not stop,” they shouted the whole time. The elastic in my shirt even broke trying to fight for myself through the crowd.
Ok so I get out of the rut and I am walking around Bergdorf, mind you I have never been there, and I was just shocked at the stuff I saw. I mean I wanted two of everything that was in that store. It was amazing. It made me feel like a celebrity to even look at all the diamonds and Dior.
After a brief crowd break, the thickness begins to pick up and it’s to see Andre Leon host a game show. I finally push my way through the crowd to get a few shots.
Now I so wish I was 100 lbs at this moment because I would be able to fit in these small spaces in order to get better pictures. I mean I just felt like I was blocking everyone and I could not get anywhere.
Anyways after that I did a little more strolling around the store, in love with the décor. I definitely was underdressed with slacks and a shirt… I needed a gown to be in there.
So as I am about to leave I see a camera filming an ultra skinny girl in cheetah print so I went over to see what was going on. There were no crowds until someone shouted “Nicky Hilton.” Then people began to scurry over. Here are my attempts of a shot of her …. I finally got one at the end.
she even brushed my arm when she walked by …. Omg … lol
I have to say standing amongst the models and fashion enthusiasts I will never forget the smell. The stench resembled that of breath that you get when you haven’t eaten in a really long time ( what I like to call hungry breath), coffee and cigarettes. Typical… very typical.
So I get outside and the line is even longer and the guards are telling people that the celebs were all gone so there was no point n coming in, and he was right because Victoria Beckam came as quick as she arrived, as did RZ.
So I wonder around looking at everyone seeing who I thought was famous, but it was too hard to pin point because everyone was dressed so nice. I usually gage important people by who is dressed the best but in the fashion world, they may not really work.
So I head to YSL because I love him and their clothes. There are no celebs there but the champagne was flowing and they were not carding people. I didn’t drink of course, because I was working lol ( this blog is work).
YSL had a cool DJ and they had a raffle for a purse, which I wish I would win. I even saw a Hermes bag in real life and it was HUGE! The guy who wore it was WORKING IT. Look at the accessories!
After that I head to COACH and see people drawing on purses which was cool, but again, no celebs and the crowd was kind of dry.
Juicy was pretty crowded but I needed to move forward so I just took a picture of the outside.
Escada, who is in the whole financially, had a cute window display of live models that were actually eating pizza and drinking water. I was pinched by an old lady who told me to write my number on a piece of paper and hold it up the window, because after all, we were in New York. Lol silly lady.
So I was strolling to the less crowded part of the 5th avenue shopping area and I see that PRADA was closed with a police officer standing guard… umm wtf. Why are you guys closed. You suck.
Around the corner was Tiffany’s, which had outdoor carpet. Mind you, it was raining off and on all night. They were giving away lemonade and coffee.
Over all I think that this was an event that was pretty well executed. I think it was a good idea to get people involved in something that is kind of similar to the all-exclusive fashion week. I mean if I cant be under the tents watching the models, I rather have them elbow me in the back to get champagne at YSL right ? ehhh
I heard about a bunch of stores that had very successful turnouts because they had a wide amount of celebrity appearances. I think this was an important aspect of the whole night. I walked by stores that had little to no customers, the sales people were even sitting down chatting because they didn’t make the effort to bring in celebrities. Example: Club Monaco
Some stores said they would have run way shows, but definitely only have a screen projecting what one might call a “fashion show” lame!
I didn’t get to experience as much as a I wanted because I was late but I think I got the feel for it. I appreciated seeing the people who made clothes and put them together much more than actual entertainers or celebrities. The rush of being surrounded by such great minds really made me excited about my field of interest.
Here are some suggestions for a better Fashion’s Night Out next year:
- I do wish that some stores actually had sales on merchandise for the night because I definitely would have bought something, and people would have brought more.
- I also wish there were like RSVP lists in order to control the crowd
- I think there def should have been a dress code because it just seemed insane what some people thought was a good idea to wear.
- I think there should have been designated busses or shuttles taking people to certain stores so that they wouldn’t waste time trying to walk or getting lost.
- I think celebrities should be in every store and they should take shifts so that every store had at least one celeb at all times.
FNO Shirts need to be sold EVERYWHERE !
I absolutely loved this night, it made me want to be a New Yorker so bad. I hope that next time I go I will be able to go under the tents the next day.
FNO was such a success. I am so grateful for Anna and Michael for putting it all together. I mean it was kind of like I went to heave for like 2 hours. Running to catch the bus home that I almost missed doesn’t even matter to me.
Well I hope this inspires you all to attend next year. Because there def. will be a next year!
Love ya !
July 2, 2009
One of my absolute favorite designers is the late Yves Saint Laurent. His legacy still lives on today after his death on June 1, 2008 at the age of 71. As one of the greatest designers in French fashion in the 1990’s, and I believe that continues into the 2000’s. But how did he get to that noteworthy position in fashion history, you ask? Oh, please allow me to tell you the full story, its pretty extensive.
Yves Mathieu Saint-Laurent (his government name) was born in Oran, Algeria in 1936, which technically makes him French and African. His family was considered very prominent in Oran with his father being the President of an insurance company and the owner of a chain of movie theaters. His mother Lucienne-Andree, half Belgian and Spanish, was where he got his sense of style.
A little bit of a history side: His family was not affected by WW II because their father was not drafted and they lived far from France. But that Karma would soon come back around to effect Yves personally.
Yves was led to fashion through a back door, theatre. Because he was bullied at school he took refuge at home. He was able to use a spare room to act out plays by Moilere and Giraudoux for his family, plays he spent most of his days studying and practicing. Becoming more fascinated with theatre, he began to read the reviews in the French magazine Vogue. It was when he the descriptions of the costumes worn by actors when he became hooked. Fashion was beginning to mean as much to him as theatre.
After entering a contest for young designers,International Wool Secretariat, in 1950 and gaining third place he was able to attend an award ceremony in Paris. In Paris he met Michel de Brunoff who was the editor-in-chief of Paris Vogue who was impressed by Yves and told him to study at Chambre Dyndicale de la Couture. He packed up and left to study but he left after a short while because he found the syllabus frustrating.
For a second time in 1954 he entered the International Wool Secretariat and won first place beating out legendary Karl Lagerfeld. He took the winning sketches to the editor-in-chief of the French Vogue. Brunoff noticed similarities between his sketches and those of Christian Dior, sent Yves over, and Dior hired him on the spot.
Yves Saint Laurent did not get special treatment at Dior, he had to do normal intern-like work, sounds familiar? After proving his place, he was able to submit sketches for the couture collection. More and more of his sketches were being accepted and in 1957 Dior had formally chosen Yves to succeed him as a designer, the same year that he passed away.
At 21 years old he was thrown into the spotlight, having to save the Dior house. His used secret weapon to save the day,his famous Trapeze line. The narrow shoulders and wide swinging skirts were a hit because people were getting tired of girdles. This success was short lived because the following collections where chewed up and spat out by the press. At a not-so-high point in his career he was drafted into the military. He was shortly released due to nervous depression, but that was not a surprise to business partner and former lover, Pierre Berge. Pierre said that Saint Laurent was born with nervous depression. To top is allll off Dior fired him while he was away for only 20 days.
In 1962 he was back on his feet opening a house with Berge. The first line under his label was compared to those of Chanel, the suit QUEEN. His muse for many years was Catherine Deneuve. He empowered women with his masculine and elegant trouser suits for women. Other popular pieces of his were tight pants, trapeze dresses, peasant blouses, smocks, thigh high boots, see-through blouses and tuxedo jackets. Smoking Jackets were also his trademark and very controversial because is made women able to affirm themselves as men.
In 1969 he pioneered designer men’s wear, ditching pin stripes and modernizing the male look. His feelings on clothing were carried on threw his designs: He detested fashion, but lived for style. And style is what he brought to mens and womenswear.
He was also the first designer to use black models in runway shows and among the first to use Asian and Pacific Island models.
Yves Saint Laurent went through spells in 1967 and 1971 of horrible controversy over his collections. These hard times fueled his lifestyle of being a party boy, seen at plays like Studio 54 often drinking and doing cocaine. His use of drugs increased more and more as the stress of making 2 ready to wear and 2 haute couture lines weighed down on him.
In 1970 he came out with a perfume line called ” Opium” ( wow ironic), which he posed nude with his classes to advertise. You can image how well that turned out.
After a horrible 1987 ready to wear show he turned over his ready to wear line to his assistants, who kept up its momentum.
In 1983, then Vogue magazine editor, Diana Vreeland constructed a solo exhibition of Saint Laurent. He would be the first living fashion designer to be honored by the Metropolitan Museum of Art. The retrospective has over 300 pieces exhibited. In 2001 he became the commander of the Legion d’Honneur by Jacques Chirac. He created a foundation with Berge to trace the history of YSL, is consists of 15,000 objects and 5,000 pieces of clothing.
He sold his company to Gucci Group for $70 million and remained as an advisor for a few years.
After 40 years in the industry he retired in 2002.
Saint Laurent’s personal life with Berges was not so personal a few days before his death when they were joined in same sex civil union so that he could receive his assets after being together for 50 years
Yves’ success was rarely registered to him, according to his love Berge. His depression ran deep and he rarely found joy in what he did. The times that he did have joy, it was hard for him. His instability is the reason why Berge was glad he was unaware of his brain cancer.
In 1996 Saint Laurent was the first couturier to have his Couture show live online and in that same year he stopped making huge shows for his ready to wear, only showing them by appointment.
I love Saint Laurent because he believed that fashion was to be worn, not made into a catwalk show, but into theatre. He was a true designer with his heart in the right place, but unfortunately his mind wasn’t. However with all the up and down responses to his clothing and his early childhood and adulthood traumas, depression was sure to follow. He once said “I’ve known fear and terrible solitude,” he said. “Tranquilizers and drugs, those phony friends. The prison of depression and hospitals. I’ve emerged from all this, dazzled but sober.”
For such a sad guy he had a hell-of-a lot of talent. It make me sad to know that he would never be able to fully appreciate his gift because of his mental issues. However, that is why us fans write about him and remember him to this day, because of his contributions to fashion. He was once the under dog and he help those who may not be considered front runners to get their share of popularity. Yves Saint Laurent changed the way that clothing looks and feels today and everywhere we look we see his influence. I appreciate him for all his work, good or bad, because it made him the legend his is today and gave me someone to look up to with hope that one day I can succeed if I persevere and cut through all the BS any way that I can, just like Yves.
June 4, 2009
Mariel Haenn is the perfect example of a stylist under wraps. She has unmistakably changed the look of pop icon Rihanna from girl-next-door to girl-that-would-never-live-any-where-near-you-because-she-is-too-famous.
With a recent birthday (May 25, 1979) she just reached her 30 year old mile-stone, but she looks no where over 23. She had her birthday bash at the Roosevelt Penthouse in LA ,with the theme being Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous, this past Saturday and from her facebook and twitter messages, it was an epic party.
A little on her background: Mari ( can I call her that? ) attended the Art Institute of Fort Lauderdale in the class of 2000. This half Puerto Rican chica has made her way in and through the celebrity and fashion community. She has worked with starts like Jada and Will Smith, Ciara, Kanye, and most inspiring, Rihanna. She told Latina.Com that her favorite Latino designer would be Esteban Cortazar, who had his own line and is now creative director for Emanuel Ungaro ( who is now trying to work with Lindsey Lohan… idk if that’s a wise decision but…). Some of the designers she is feeling are Christian Dior, YSL, Zac Posen and Givenchy.
I absolutely wish I had more info to share about Mariel, but she simply has no information about her on the Internet. I had to dig through her facebook and twitter account to scoop up the information I have found.
It tells me that the people who are working the hardest behind the scenes of these “fashion-forward” stars get absolutely no play. For example, I googled her and all I got was mentions of her name and no pictures of her alone. That’s a shame. She doesn’t even have a WIKI page, seriously, why are we ignoring her. She is influencing the world in fashion and she doesn’t even have a wiki. I am floored. I do have some pictures that I manage to dig up from her facebook and twitter.
( Mariel on the left with her friend)
Mariel Haenn, stylist, costume designer the life of fashion as it is today, influencing those that influence to masses. Luv ya girl and keep up the good work!