We’ve been on the DCSHOECOUSA (DC) trainer watch for sometime. Certain that the California based brand has the right features (retro look, unintentionally fashionable logo, bold design, and comfort factor) for fashion market crossover, we’re now seeing the label starting to appeal to more than skaters and action sports enthusiasts. While we can report on some increased sightings of the trainers in downtown New York, it’s our recent visits to London that have confirmed our early prediction for DC. There the label is frequently spotted on skaters, hip-hoppers, and fashionistas alike, and appears to be in a head-to-head competition with some popular brands on the market.
- ALL Fashion Features /
Before Bernhard Willhelm became the poster child of kitsch, W& LT (Wild and Lethal Trash) sated edgy consumer tastes for toy-influenced and anime-inspired quirky clothes. In the mid to late ’90s, W& LT pioneer Walter Van Beirendonck created a breakthrough fashion language where it wasn’t uncommon to see models in alien headgear and thrash comic printed daywear and complete bodysuits descending the runway.
Not since Julien McDonald weaved his way to a full-fledged designing career has the knitwear category been so sexy.
Occasionally, the insiders of the fashion world become guardians of a secret
which they know must some day be relinquished. This is how we feel about the work
of Swiss native Markus Huemer, who has been showing his collection Markus Huemer: UNIT in New York since 1999. Shunning the commodification of fashion after paying his dues at the standard Seventh Avenue design houses, Huemer began a quiet and private dialogue between the object and the wearer which, over the years, has morphed into a
conversation rife with a potent yet discreet sexuality. His use of traditional
materials (jersey, corduroy, fine cottons) is juxtaposed on the human body to
reveal and conceal, creating allusions to themes as divergent as sensuality,
bondage, privacy, and dislocation. The precision of his cuts display the skills
Last spring we profiled the brewing multicultural movement in the fashion industry. We forecasted the arrival of more magazines targeting people of color and more representation of varying cultural images in the style arena.
Reebok refuses to be left behind in the fashionable shoe game. This spring the label launches Limited Edition, a shoe series so exclusive they’re expected to sell out online and never make it to stores. Reebok Gold Medallist Crocodile, Gold Medallist Reptile, and Zenswa (to be worn by the women of the New York City Ballet) are the three styles debuting on a soon to launch website. The shoes will only be available for a month. New styles will then be introduced, selling by the get-it-while-it’s-hot model. The luxury croc and snakeskin Medallist series come in hot pink and orange and the ballet-inspired glove leather Zenswa are satin-lined in sleek gray. The trainer race is picking up.
From San Francisco’s Gap and Levi’s territory comes a new men’s line that’s all about style simplicity. David Romero’s casual and elegant d.ROMERO menswear label debuts in stores this spring and will have competitors like John Varvatos on guard for its easy and rugged American style. Trained as an architect, Romero’s background plays heavily into the way that he approaches designing accessible, masculine clothes.
Giving Sigerson Morrison a run for their money, a new shoe store is revitalizing the block of Prince St between Elizabeth and the Bowery.
Niche publications addressing highly specific targets are leading the trend in the magazine world. With so much to choose from, consumers are seeking out specific content and finding it in lesser-known publications. Titles such as the quarterly Pop Magazine for serious fashion content, Intercourse for automobile fashion and lifestyle, and Bon Magazine, which tackles lifestyle from a Swedish point of view are seeing their stars on the rise, and gaining international attention for their tailored perspective. Micheal Elmenbeck, editor-in-chief of Bon Magazine, discusses the formula at his publication.
JCR: How do you define Bon Magazine?
The romanticism and elegance of the fall shows has brought an explosion of rich and decadent color tones-with raspberry, clarets, and merlot the most visible. The blue based red tones seen at the shows come from a need to create balance in clothing that was dominated by masculine fabrics and earthy colors.
If you don’t remember 31 Fevrier, the handbag and jewelry sensation of the late ’80s from Marc Gourmelen and Helene Nepomiatzi, we won’t hold it against you — we don’t either. We do know Nepomiatizi’s new label 69-96, however, and since their inspiration comes from 31 Fevrier ‘s early vision of associating handbags, jewelry and shoes, we’re forced to reference the concept pioneer. 69-96 takes one detail (for AW ’04 it’s the kiss-lock closure of a purse) and spreads it across 15 different pieces (accessories and clothes) that are slightly kitschy but mostly chic. Partners Helene Nepomiatzi and Claire Savary worked at Celine (where Nepomiatzi assisted Savary as leather goods manager), then at Nina Ricci (directing fashion accessories), which explains how they come to choose the best leathers and hardware. A cool mix of street meets luxury, built on the concept of developing obsessive ideas, marks 69-96′s unique story.
Premiere Classe, the Paris tradeshow, calls itself “the barometer of the accessories market” and supports the claim by consistently exhibiting an array of talent doing business just outside the glaring fashion spotlight. French designer Jerome Dreyfuss is one case in point. Since he abandoned his ready-to-wear collection in 2002 to focus on his accessories line, Dreyfuss’ utility bags have been a standout at Premiere Classe. A few seasons later, his collection has strategically expanded. He’s kept to a limited number of shapes (ringo,bandit, weva,bobi, bonnie, clyde and yodi) mixing leather, quilted jersey, satin, and velvet in rich maroon, tabac, and chocolate colors to create some of the coolest bags around. Trendy doesn’t exactly define them — they just seem right.
As designers continue to explore and blur the distinctions between the
male and female dress code, we are beginning to see the emergence of
a new gender neutral aesthetic. The concept of the unisex urban uniform,
pioneered by Helmut Lang, has manifested itself in various ways the last
The shake up in the luxury fashion sector is making the subject of branding today’s hot topic. Is it the designer or is it the brand that matters most. And if it’s a shared profile, how do you best mix the two identities? We find it timely that Gabriellecorto Moltedo — the 26-year old son of Laura and Vittorio Moltedo, Bottega Veneta’s owners before the Gucci Group acquired the leather goods company — just launched a line of luxurious leather accessories called Corto Moltedo. This month while showing in his Paris atelier, Moltedo sat down with JC Report to discuss using the family name, his star appeal, and the plans for branding his company.
JC: As a new label selling to stores for the first time this season, what’s your brand offering?
If you think Matthew Williamson has been rather quiet these days, that is all about to change with his soon-to-open flagship store on Bruton Street in London. Madonna, Kate, Sarah Jessica, Helena, Gwyneth, and a slew of laid back stylish chicks adore the designer and his clothes — which makes it one of the most hotly anticipated events in a city not short on store openings. The look of the store’s interior won’t surprise his admirers. Williamson’s love of pink unfolds in what he calls a “virtual nature” scene which means pink stars, molded Perspex bubbles, fluorescent glossy rails, stone floors, and Georgian paneling.
What’s bright, colorful, cheap, and fun? Pamela Anderson?
Everyone seems to be playing games these days. Not mind games, but board games like Monopoly, Scrabble, and chess, and the trend is linked to a new dress up sense in fashion . Many fall women’s collections declared a return to refined elegance, discreet ’50s silhouettes, fitted cardigans, luxurious fabrics in saturated colors, and flirty feminine prints. And we’ve previewed you on the mandatory gentleman suit for men this fall. Just as fashion is rejecting overt sexuality and returning to a certain demure and smooth sophistication, the growing trend for playing board games is wrapped up in the style of subtle seduction.
A styling new neighborhood crops up in New York City every few years. Now several neighborhoods are connecting to create a Manhattan style line which is becoming the mandatory stroll for visitors and natives alike. The line runs from SoHo to Chelsea. Let’s start our stroll at the giant new L’Occitane/ Oliviers & Co. at Prince and Mercer. Then hop over to Broadway, keeping north and you’ll hit the standard-setting, Koolhaas-designed Prada store.
Reykjavik’s reputation as a party town has been growing in recent years and the word is now getting out on the city’s quirky fashion sense that doesn’t all center on Björk. Music and style are intrinsically linked in this city that gets rocking after 2am and during party hours is the best time to witness true Icelandic style. Organizer of Iceland Fashion Week, and owner of Icelandic Models, Kolla Aðalsteinsdóttir tells us about the style quotient in this northern outpost and what trends are coming out of the city.
JC: How do you define Icelandic style?
KA: Practical and trendy with a Nordic twist. Wool is obviously a heavily used fabric in native Icelandic designs and materials like fish skin and different kinds of leather are favorite materials for designers here.
JC: Where do the styling influences come from?
What’s up with frequent sighting of the white blazer?
After colliding in Howard Davis’ shoe design class at Parsons, Queens native
Marina Rosin and Milan-born Fabiana Rigamonti joined forces
to create a cross-cultural shoe line that they promptly dubbed Due Farina
(Due for two and Farina a combination of their first names). For their first
adventure they each handmade a pair of dark brown leather sandals with crystal
buckles and coral lining, and wore them to a high-profile restaurant opening where
they were an instant hit. As Rosin recalls, “The attention was
overwhelming — even though we couldn’t walk — but hey, nobody knew that!” Since then the orders have been coming in, manufacturing is now done in Italy, and yes you can walk in them, although the attention from admirers might slow your speed. People will stop to appreciate the sexy, delicate leather sandals and closed-toe pumps with cutout sides in black, brown, cream and bronze, all of which