Thursday, March 29, 2007

Allegra Versace battling anorexia

Italian designer Donatella Versace has confirmed an open secret: that her daughter Allegra, the heir to 50 percent of the Versace empire, is battling anorexia. Donatella and her ex-husband Paul Beck took the unusual step of making a public statement in response to growing media speculation about their daughter's health.
Allegra Versace
A painfully thin Allegra Versace arriving at her 18th birthday party in 2004

"Our daughter, Allegra has been battling anorexia, a very serious disease, for many years," they said in the statement. Allegra was only 11 when her uncle Gianni, the designer whose friends included Princess Diana, was gunned down outside his Miami Beach mansion by serial killer Andrew Cunanan. "She is receiving the best medical care possible to help overcome this illness and is responding well," said the statement by Donatella, who owns 20 percent of the firm and took over as Versace designer after her brother's death. Donatella went into rehab two years ago for a self-confessed cocaine addiction. Let's hope her daughter also manages a recovery.

Update: Hedi Slimane leaving Dior Homme

Following yesterday's "news" that talks between Hedi Slimane and his employer Dior Homme were at an impasse, industry paper Women's Wear Daily finally confirms that Slimane will be leaving the label that he transformed into the epitome of cool since taking it over in 2000.
Dior Homme
A typically minimalist Dior Homme advertising campaign image

The paper says Slimane will be replaced by his former assistant Kris Van Assche, as had been widely rumored last summer when the talks first hit trouble. It's the end of an era, and also a powerful signal to designers that no matter how famous they are, the suits remain in charge. WWD is already drawing comparisons with Tom Ford's exit from Gucci. In a year, will Slimane's black-and-white photographs of Pete Doherty look just as dated as Ford's porno chic advertising campaigns for Gucci? Backstage is certainly going to be a lot more fun - Van Assche is friendly and chatty, as opposed to the painfully shy Slimane.
Kris Van Assche
The rather good-looking Kris Van Assche (left) and some of his creations

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Slimane & Dior - the saga continues...

After nine months of negotiations, I have almost lost the will to care if Hedi Slimane is going to stay on as menswear designer for Dior Homme. Industry bible Women's Wear Daily reports that executives at Dior have also reached breaking point and are ready to part with their star designer.
Hedi Slimane
Dior menswear designer Hedi Slimane

"The French fashion house and the designer have been in protracted talks to renew Slimane's Dior Homme contract — and to establish a signature fashion house — with majority ownership of the Slimane brand said to be among the most contentious clauses," WWD reports in Wednesday's edition. "Christian Dior is said to be keen to move on, 'fed up' with Slimane's demands, which have made talks drag on for almost a year and dented morale among the rank and file, according to one source."
Indeed, the last Dior menswear show in January lacked the sizzle of previous seasons. There were the celebrity guests (Karl Lagerfeld, Neil Tennant), the minimalist set (neon lights and rows of black speakers), the trendy soundtrack (I forget which hot new indie band was featured this season), but after the show everyone just got up and left. It was as if the fashion pack were just going through the motions, and when that happens, you either need a change of direction from the designer himself, or just a change of designers full stop.

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Jelly mouse

These Marc Jacobs mouse flats in see-through plastic are cute enough to eat.
Marc Jacobs
The jelly "Mouse" shoe, available in seven colors

Not recommended for city wear...if you don't want to have smelly feet! But they make a great option for the beach, at a relatively reasonable 110 euros per pair.

Monday, March 26, 2007

La Labo nose its scents

The fashion world is all abuzz with the perfume creations of Le Labo, not least because each bottle features a label printed with your own name.
Le Labo

It's all part of the craze for customization, but does packaging really qualify? A real custom-made fragrance can cost several thousand dollars. La Labo, which is based in New York, claims to formulate each of its fragrances "by hand, on demand." Does this mean they are mixed fresh in front on your eyes, or simply bottled? I don't know. The line is carried at Colette in Paris now, so I will check it out. La Labo is said to be developing a special fragrance for Colette that will go on sale in September, as part of the ongoing celebrations of the multi-brand store's 10th anniversary.

Saturday, March 24, 2007

Tila March

One of the hottest handbag brands this spring is Tila March, creator of the Zelig, and instant classic made from leather-trimmed canvas that opens up at the sides to carry all your summer essentials.
Tila March
The small version of the Zelig

Created last year by French fashion editor Tamara Taichman, the bags have been snapped up by Bergdorf Goodman in the United States. In France, they are carried at department stores Printemps and Le Bon Marché as well as trendy store Colette.

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Vogue sails with Petit Bateau

Among the essentials for the summer holidays is a striped sailor top. French Vogue and cult brand Petit Bateau have teamed up to produce the cutest little striped T-shirt dress for summer. The mini, which features four gold buttons on one shoulder, retails for 50 euros on and until April 24. I can only provide a tiny snapshot of it here, so go check it out for yourselves! Warning: toned thighs required.
Petit Bateau
The Vogue-Petit Bateau sailor dress

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

L for love

Gwen Stefani joins the ranks of celebrity fragrance launches with her scent L, slated to go on sale in September. But Gwen is slightly different from the Britneys and Christinas of this world - she has a full clothing and handbag range, L.A.M.B., to which she will soon add shoes and watches.
Gwen Stefani
Gwen Stefani (Photo: Lorenzo Agius/Getty Images)

The print campaign was shot by Mert Alas and Marcus Piggott, the duo behind the Vuitton ads. I have met Gwen a couple of times at the fashion shows in Paris, and she is unfailingly sweet, cheerful and polite. I wish her the best of luck with her new venture!

Monday, March 19, 2007

Holy Maloles!

Hurrah! By some fluke, I am able to sign in to Blogger which has been blocking access to my account for the last month. Just in time to let you know about the new pumps by cult Spanish designer Maloles, who has designed a capsule collection for French shoe chain André that goes on sale...tomorrow, March 20!
Maloles limited edition creations for André

These are so deliciously retro! Fans of the brand include Cameron Diaz, Julia Roberts and Jennifer Aniston, but the little flats normally cost a few hundred euros. This is a unique chance to snap them up for less (I can just see them with cropped white pants for summer...)