Rafael Cennamo’s Transformative Gowns -Dresses WithThe Power To Make You A Princess

22 Feb

Text, Vivian and Laura Wood

Rafael Cennamo's Sapphire Blue Siren Gown, the fall 2012 Collection

Every woman would like to be a princess or a queen and Venezuelan designer, Rafael Cennamo, knows that.

Rafael Cennamo at his Fall 2012 Presentation, sourced from www.examiner.com, photo, Getty Images

He even crowned some of his models in his NYFW Presentation at the Lincoln Center Box venue.

The teased hair with the circlets is modern days take on the gigantic wigs Marie Antoinette and her ladies wore to Court as well as the cover of  Jo Mannings My Lady Scandalous [The Amazing Life and Outrageous Times of Grace Dalrymple Elliott, Royal Courtesan] a book I can’t wait to start reading tonight.

Rafael Cennamo Metallic Mesh Cocktail DressRafael Cennamo Embroidered Tulle Gown - The West's Idealized Version of a Princess

PR guru, Paul Wilmot, had expressed enthusiasm for this designer some months back, and  he has never steered us wrong, but this collection exceeded all expectations.

True, we’d checked-out images of Taylor Swift and Gwen Stefani in R.C. and they looked good, but what we saw in the Box was on a whole different plane; it was transformative dressing at its best.

We fell in love with Rafael Cennamo when we spotted the blue metallic mesh turtleneck cocktail dress with its discreet illusion panel. The effect was Modern Day Chinese Princess.

The moonlight metallic embroidered tulle gown was the Western idea of what a princess should look like. The embroidery and its placement was reminiscent of a bejeweled bodice and underskirt like Queen Elizabeth I wore in royal portraits.  As if that weren’t already enough, the sapphire blue backless gown with draped sleeves worn by a beautiful Asian model knocked us out.  We can’t image that this dress wouldn’t wind up on the Red Carpet. We hope that someone snatched this one up and that we’ll see it Sunday at the Oscars when into ABC to watch.

Below, a shout-out to the people on the team who helped  Rafael  create these modern day princesses

Styling – Danielle Nachmani

Hair – Matthew Curtis / TRESemme

Make-up – Rogelio Reyna / Bobbi Brown

Nail Care – Kelly Baber / Jessica

Hats – Yestadt Millinery

Jewelry – Jacob & Co.

Casting – Maurilio Carnino / MTC Casting

Advertisements

Costello Tagliapietra’s Flattering Fashion for the Modern Woman: The Fall 2012 Collection

21 Feb

Text, Vivian Kelly and Laura Wood

Reported by Laura Wood – Thursday, Feb. 9, Milk Studios, NYC

This season the guys had a lot of prints [for them] using their eco-friendly airdye technology. The first look came out and I knew that I was at a Costello Tagliapietra and I felt that although the colors were strong, they would suit a lot of colorings. The plunging V-neck and flutter sleeve were easy-sexy and that’s what you go to C.T. for.

Look #5 from the fall 2012 Collection, photo by Alessandro Garofalo/GoRunway.com

Look #5, the Costello Tagliapietra fall'12 Runway Show

Look #5 was an easy transitional reversible coat in chartreuse and orange, perfect for when you can’t just go out in your dress and meet even extend to chillier summer days.

Although some of the prints included editorial eye-popping colors, Laura loved the sophisticated print of look #8. The skillful construction minimizes what you want to hide and maximizes the curves you want to highlight.

Costello Tagliapietra Look # 8 The Perfect Dress

Costello Tagliapietra Look #9 - the Medieval Hooded Theme

In look #9 they address the hooded theme of the season. After looking at this coat, we can’t wait to throw-away our hats. The hoods are reminiscent of the ones people wore in Medieval Times which were a hooded cloak, not to be mistaken with a sweat shirt hoodie.

Although Vivian loved the skinny pants we agreed that #15, the high waist park pleated trouser is a necessary wardrobe staple whether you’re a size 2 or 12.

Costello Tagliapietra Look #15 The Essential Bark Pant

They offered five evening gowns, and our favorite was look #26 – a lavender sheath with beautiful draping and just enough sheen to be glamorous without being overdone.

Costello Gown Look #26, Our Favorite Evening Option From The fall '12 Collection

Bravo Costello Tagliapietra! You did it again.

FE Friend Sofia Bak Reports From The Trenches at LONDON Fashion Week: Day 1 of LFW

19 Feb


Text, Sofia Bak
Images Sourced by Vivian Kelly. from designscene.net
Up like bullet at 7, throw on Lako Bukia, Onna Ehrlich-Bell and mom’s black vintage Zorro hat. Running late for the 9am show…as always…lovely new assistant Anna Komolova saves a seat…Antoni & Alison wake everyone up with loud crazy music and a concept to switch your brain into gear…loved 1 dress…out on the street to shoot for Vogue Italia…street style photographers outnumber possible models…I finally find 1…10 more want to shoot her…mostly ended up shooting other street stylers all day…but felt like I got shot more than I shot them…it’s the blue dip dyed hair. Speaking of which…the only street style trend I’m seeing so far is coloured hair…seemed like practically everyone had a splash of colour this season. Took a break with tea & cake at Orla Kiely presentation where models were showing off outfits at a 50’s style dance…did they book the ones who could dance or teach them? Beautiful, romantic…oooh macaroons! Run in at the last minute for (friend) Francesca Marotta debut show, stunned by the Italian widows, bloody tears, great acting skills on the models and lace…lace…lace. Turned away with a seated ticket for Bora Aksu show. Weird. How did they manage to organise that?! Brilliant casting at Felder Felder, lovely to see my girl from Kiev Fashion Days – Alla Kostromichova opening...great prints and new knits. Love. Watched another brilliant fashion film by Ada Zanditon. Found incredible footwear architect Julian Hakes at the exhibitions…shot man in a Another photo by Diamondo Christofilatex woman: Pandemonia…dying by the time Jena Theo show rolled in…but loved every piece. Would buy 99% of it…it’s like they thought…what does Sofia like to wear…baggy black tops and skinny jeans it is.
Photographed by Diamando Christofi, Contributing Editor, London, at Designscene.net
Now hating my life because all I want to do is pass out but I have 468 photos and 98 e-mails to go through (99 by the time I finished this…damn now it’s 101). And you always ask me if I’m LOOKING FORWARD to fashion week and if I’m going to any PARTIES. This is just day 1…in a NUTSHELL!

Maria Maria Maria! [Sharapova] – That Is, Styled by Leonard Zagami For NYFW

17 Feb

STORY, Anthony Palermo

Preface,by Vivian Kelly

I’ve always admired  gorgeous women with long blonde locks since I was 5 years old, starting with Goldilocks and  later, Princess Aurora, Farrah Fawcett Majors, Marilyn Monroe and more recently, Blake Lively and Maria Sharapova. Family friend, William, then a Dutch University Student, and now a KLM pilot, jokingly showed me an image of Maria Sharapova on his iphone, casually calling her “my girlfriend” and then laughing when I believed him – for a second.

Apparently, we weren’t the only ones to think Maria was something really special.

This season, at NYFW, Maria was front row at some of New York’s biggest shows. Below, Anthony Palermo, tells us how his ALS partner, Leonard Zagami, created some fresh looks for the gorgeous tennis star. I’ve featured the one she sported at the Marc Jacobs show.


And, now… here’s Anthony!

“Mercedes Benz Fashion week is always filled with fabulous people. These Fall RTW 2012 collections were more about the who’s who in the front row. One of our all time favorites , Maria Sharapova , knows how to make an entrance and cause a frenzy on the court, but the real commotion starts when she is spotted at all the hottest shows!  Celebrity make up artist  and  friend of the AnthonyLeonard Salon ,  Andie Markoe -Byrne, teamed up with  Leonard Zagami, Creative Director of ALS,  to complete Maria ’s looks for the shows.

Read on as Leonard explains look 1 of the 3 looks he gave the grand slammer for this very fashionable NYC Week!

AT Marc Jacobs:

Maria , seen here with famed photographer  Patrick Demarchelier and his wife Mia , had a slightly pinned back side part . “I used Super Shine Cream by Oribe   to get a sleek look with out it being too overdone” says Zagami. ” I also used a Kent Brush ( for fine hair) to help smooth down fly-aways”. Maria usually  parts her hair in the middle so this was a great change for her!

To read and see all 3, go to anthonyleonardsalonblog. There, you’ll find out how Leonard styled her for her appearances at Vera Wang and Oscar de la Renta. If you’re sitting next to Anna [Wintour], you had BETTER be on your game! Thanks to Leonard, Maria looked every bit the star she is.

True Fashion – The Legend of Lady White Snake, Starring Daphne Guinness

15 Feb

Text, Vivian Kelly

Reported by Vivian Kelly and Laura Wood

Photograph of Daphne Guinness by Markus Klinko & Indrani

WHAT: a Grade-A platinum fashion moment at 172 Norfolk Street, NYC

It’s taken me two days to fully digest the events of Sunday night. It’s not often I get a dose of pure undiluted high octane fashion.

Laura and I arrived at the Angel Orensanz Foundation for Contemporary Art at 10:00p.m. on the dot. THIS was NOT something either of us wanted to miss a second of. We had high hopes for this event, in part due to two days worth of experiencing the polished sterility of the Lincoln Center Venues and the accompanying jitters of sucking down one too many cans of  free Diet Pepsi. We were actually look forward to visiting Alphabet City as the Lower East Side is the only remaining vestige of “NYC Eighties cool” that still survives. Going down there is fun and makes me feel 25 again.

The Angel Orensanz venue is the artist’s creation and is a cross between a Russian Orthodox Church and a nightclub, in other words, Limelight, when it just started and was THE place to go and dance until 2:00a.m. before going off to Florent in MeatPacking to have something to eat before trying to score a taxi willing to take us back to Laura’s apartment in the Village.

It was obvious from the moment we entered that this was “a happening”. First, there were the photographs – giant sized ones of Daphne Guinness posing in her astounding McQueen Couture, which she wore in the film. Catwoman has nothing on Daphne who was dressed up as a high fashion villainess in a red catsuit and insanely high heels. I’ll need to win Powerball to scratch this itch as I mentally “bought” four of the photographs that would look amazing in  The Fashion Examiner office and  fireplace room. Total cost for four of Markus Klinko & Indrani’s fabulous photos of Daphne = $160,000. These photos really DO “combine story-telling with cutting-edge fashion”.

Next, we ambled over to the well-stocked bar – no yukky plastic glasses here – and sat down in a padded bamboo gilt chair just as Daphne made her entrance in an incredible chainmail gown and a head ornament loaded with what I’m assuming were probably actually diamonds rather than Swarovski Crystals.

The film itself was genius – a cross between a poetry reading and a couture fashion show. It may sound odd, but it was spectacular. On our way out, Laura stopped to chat with a young female editor to get her take. Like us, she was blown away and was going to Google the film and read Neil Gaiman’s poem. The point of the film though, was the EXPERIENCE and it got a 10/10 on that score. After this visual feast, we got an auditory one – a performance by the very talented Viva Girls, who were perched like a row of angels in blue ball gowns to the right of the massive screen.

The grand finale to the event was a capsule collection of gowns from the new Genghis Khan collection designed by GK Reid. We loved the hooded one and his concept of transformative styling and dressing – something we can totally get behind.

SO, which of Markus Klinko & Idrani’s photographs of Daphne Guinness would YOU like to take home with you?

Daphne in her Chain mail Couture

Christian Siriano Comes Into His Own

12 Feb

Reported by Laura Wood

Text, Vivian Kelly and Laura Wood

When Christian Siriano burst onto the scene after becoming the winner of Project Runway’s 4th season. Back then, he was known for his foppy hair do, “fierceness”, wild prints and penchant for ruffles.

Laura already loved bats [the real ones, not the ones in “Twilight”], and she was wowed by the bat inspiration at Christian’s latest runway show. We already know that Twilight’s Kristen Stewart is a fan, but so is Gabourey Sibide of “Precious” who while considerably larger than the waify Stewart, looked great in his designs.

Now to the clothes – in a word, breathtaking.

Satin Bat Vein Dress from Style.com Slideshow, the fall 2012 Show

Almost uniformly, the flow of the clothes as they moved down the runway gave Laura chills. It was a great collection, starting with the opening platinum crepe satin bat vein dress, which set the tone for the whole show. Subtle elegance showed a new found sophistication and self confidence in this very talented American fashion designer. As always, Laura is on the lookout for clothes that fit real women, ie: those who have curves and aren’t 5’11”. Like all the top designers, Siriano seems to fully understand that a winning collection is one in which the women wear the clothes not the other way around.

Later, Laura found a tried and true substitution to her vintage Michael Kors  Eighties’ batwing dress, exit #13, a wing sleeve sheath dress, which actually more suited to her now that she’s in her Forties.

Siriano still retains his sense of drama but he’s in charge of the drama this time and that bears out in his masterful designs like look #9, the faux fox infinity scarf which got “oohs” from Laura’s neighbors. Because it was paired with The very simple knit turtleneck and silk tuxedo trouser underneath set it off perfectly.

He made sure to include some Academy Award contenders including a black beaded scalloped gown and a wing sleeve evening gown. The trend for beaded gowns on the Red Carpet at the Golden Globes and SAG Awards has already been set. We’d love love to see this gown on Berenice Bejo, who was really cute in “The Artist”.

Our vote for “most versatile dress” goes to #22, the burgundy silk sheath dress with flight neckline.

Bowery Hotel + Dominic Louis = Modern Medieval Luxe

11 Feb

Text, Vivian Kelly and Laura Wood

This was the last show of the evening and we almost didn’t go but thanks to the ridiculous self-created chaos at Milk Studio we scrapped our plans to stay for Erickson Beamon, M. Patmos, and John Bartlett. Lucky for us, we’d gotten our interview with John early on – [thanks Ross from the Deborah Hughes team!].

Chaos Outside Milk Studio, Thursday Night, 9:20p.m. - No one's getting in at this point!

We heard later from Tracy E. Hopkins of Everythingshewants.net that the only way she and her friends were able to stay inside until the 9:00p.m. doors open time was by convincing the security guys who were manning the Libertine show was to let them stay in the building thus avoiding the Studio54-esque lines that extended way past Jeffrey’s.

A cab ride later we entered one of our favorite venues, the ski lodge like atmosphere of the Bowery Hotel’s private party space complete with roaring fire, medieval tapestries, and moroccan tiled floor. The only fly in the ointment was that it was a cash bar but that was offset by the complimentary bobble water bottles.We even posed for them and the bobble is in our bags now at all times.

This Versus the Line At Milk - Where Would YOU rather be?

As far as the clothes – a pleasant surprise; the more we looked the more we liked.  The first impression is how wonderfully the clothes fit with the atmosphere of the venue ie: a perfect presentation. On the way back to the Club, we reflected how these wonderfully constructed clothes would not have have fared as well on a traditional runway. These clothes needed to be examined close-up in order to fully appreciate the detail.

The "everything dress" at Dominic Louis

My Contributor, Laura Wood, and Ellen Sears, AAU Online Director of the Fashion School all loved and agreed we would wear the black knit sweater dress. This dress takes into account the idea of season-less dressing which is particularly relevant these days as the weather is so unpredictable. Paired with a a long sleeve top and with a coat, its good to go for a cold 30F day like today. It works just as well in 40-60 degree weather worn on its own with little ballet flats or high sandals.

There were several pieces with hoods for men and women that had were reminiscent of the hooded cloaks worn in Medieval times. A cloak seems like a fresh alternative to a coat. The most spectacular piece was two piece ensemble combined hard and soft. The breast plate-like shell top was intricately worked leather. The more you looked the more of the design you noticed, just as you would a finely carved sword handle. It may be highly “editorial” [translation – not for everyday] but we wanted it anyhow.

Last but not least, we stopped on the way out to admire the art house photogpraphs, especially the one of the fierce guy wearing a ball-gown skirt.

Note to Designers for next season – we’ll go to see anyone who shows here!