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Paris Designer Competition: Podium Jeunes Stylistes

News from Paris, France! The city of lights is hosting the Third Edition of PODIUM Jeunes Stylistes, a fashion design competition, on February 8th. The competition is made up of 15 designers who were selected  from over 200 candidates.  Each designer is responsible for creating two looks inspired by a given theme while using the mandatory materials in their creations. You may be wondering how long they have to work on their looks?  100 days. The judges and guests will congregate to see each contestant’s fashion show to choose the “Best Young Designer of the Year.”

But that’s not all! In this edition of Podium partnered with MESSE Frankfurt, the designers will also create a “third look” to fit the Ready-to-Wear category. While this is not included in the competition, the looks will be a part of the first ever PJS Prêt-à-Porter collection! Take a look at their Facebook page, Twitter, YouTube Channel and Blog to keep up with news on the competition and to watch a LIVEstream of the fashion show.

 

 

Inside UFCG Press Day: The Exclusive Scoop for Spring

Just some “springspiration” for you…

Do you love Manolo BlanhikChadwick BellGregory Parkinson? Have you ever wished that top designers would lay out their new collections for you to view in your cozy living room? Well this happened for me. …Okay, it sort of happened for me. I went to a press day at the ever-chic Lambs Club for the following designers:

  • CHADWICK BELL | WOMENS READY TO WEAR
  • GIANVITO ROSSI | WOMENS  ACCESSORIES
  • GREGORY PARKINSON | WOMENS READY TO WEAR
  • TEN THOUSAND THINGS | ACCESSORIES
  • TEN THOUSAND THINGS FOR GREGORY PARKINSON | ACCESSORIES
  • TRIBUNE STANDARD | WOMENS READY TO WEAR
  • MANOLO BLAHNIK FOR TRIBUNE STANDARD | ACCESSORIES
  • INDi CUSTOM DENIM | MENS AND WOMENS DENIM
  • CARON CALLAHAN  | WOMENS READY TO WEAR

I was lead upstairs through what seemed like a maze of secret hallways until a door was opened that lead into the most quaint, wonderful little room — reminiscent of a living room — complete with comfy couches and chairs and a warm fireplace and crackling wood. All around the the walls collections of gorgeous clothes were neatly arranged. Someone *pinch me*! My eyes went directly to the Manolo’s… so predictable…

First up… Chadwick Bell. Mr. Bell gave his Spring 2012 collection an architectural-inspired edge with strong seams and loose structuring. P.S. I can picture Duchess Catherine wearing this little number … paired with her L.K. Bennett nude pumps, of course.

Gianvito Rossi:

His collection was quirky, yet elegant at the same time. He definitely trigged the “shoe-fetish” within me. I was “oohh-ing and awwe-ing” at every pair!

Gregory Parkinson:

Gregory Parkinson is known for mastering many a bright, bold, and beautiful collection, but now he has mastered a winsome, whimsical, and wonderful all WHITE collection for Spring 2012! This directs the eye’s focus to the texture and intricate details of the piece. What I love about the collection is it has a very “throw it on and go” easy feel, while the details and embellishments scream style-savviness. EXCITING NEWS: Parkinson is collaborating with ANTHROPOLOGIE to do a collection due in stores THIS February! An excuse to be your own Valentine? I think yes.

 

While we’re discussing Gregory Parkinson… he also collaborated with Ten Thousand Things to do a jewelry line! The pieces were so beautiful and one of a kind! Check it out, here.

Tribune Standard — Women’s Ready to Wear:

Creative director, Tawfik Mounayer put together quite the collection. From the 70’s inspired prints, and wide-leg pants, to the 20’s flapper inspired pieces, Mounayer gives the fashion dilettante many a choice to indulge in a multi-faceted shopping spree all in the same collection!

 

Now, back to what first caught my attention… Manolo Blahnik for Tribune Standard:

Tribune Standard did its first shoe collaboration with Manolo Blahnik, which featured the collection’s prints along with green stiletto heels that evoked plant stems.

Tawfik says of the collection, “Think garden party sophisticate meets showgirl”

INDi Custom Denim:

Now this is a cool brand. Ever wanted custom, designer made-to-order jeans?  For $170 a pair (that is cheaper than most designer jeans you’ll find in stores), these jeans are made completely customized for your body, to boot— (cut)! As an added luxury, once you submit your customized order the website remembers it, so if you ever want to get a second pair or re-order… your perfect, new pair is a few clicks away!

Okay, so here’s the skinny….

1. PICK YOUR FIT

For women choose from slim, relaxed, skinny, or trouser for men choose from slim, classic, or relaxed

2. SELECT YOUR STYLE

Customize fabric, wash, leg shape, pockets, and more…

3. CUSTOMIZE YOUR FIT

Fill out our body profile to get jeans that are made for your body

Not ready to do it yourself? You can also shop from styles recommended for your body type or shop our collection of styles hand-picked by our designer for this season.

Caron Callahan Women’s Ready to Wear Spring 2012: 

According to her website, “Caron Callahan is a collection created for women who love beautiful clothes but don’t need to make a fuss about them.  The company ethos is rooted in well-made, feminine clothes, while keeping in mind that they should be playful, purposeful and wearable.” Now that’s a brand I can get behind! Well, congratulations on a job well done, Caron! I LOVED this collection! It is so easy, sophisticated, and simple without being banal. In my book this is true “ready to wear” material that is approachable. I want so many  ALL of these pieces!

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Black Friday Deals You Don’t Want to Miss!

You have to admit, Black Friday is all about the rush, especially for those slightly competitive types. The idea that you can get a stellar deal at some of your favorite shops is quite exhilarating. Our hope is to give you a heads up so you can start planning now for these rad deals. Don’t wing the experience; make a plan! The motto: GO BIG OR GO HOME. See our handy list of stores you don’t want to miss!

Milk and Honey: a new boutique on Henderson that will become your new obsession.
The dealio: Spend 300, get 75 off. Spend 200, get 50 off. Spend 100, get 25 off.

Nordstrom Rack: A go-to for superfluous finds, and the best discounted designer jeans known to man. P.S. Have you checked out their shoe section? You’ll need more than two hands on your way to checkout.
The dealio: get 25% off any one item!

Urban Outfitters: For anything downtown chic (and great rocker tees).
The dealio: From 5AM-10AM, all clearance items are an additional 50% off. Score!!!!

H&M: They have finally shared the love with Dallas! And they are sharing some love on Friday, too.
The dealio: Doors will open at 5AM. The first 100 customers in line will receive a scratch-off coupon for up to $300. You will find dresses and sweaters for $5, outerwear for $20, and pants for $10!

Beacoup: The adorable boutique that has apparel, home decor, and jewelry. Great gifts are galore!
The dealio: Get the Limited Edition 2011 Midnight Heart Charm!

Steve Madden: Shoe heaven. The selection rocks. The prices rock.
The dealio: receive amazing discounts, a FREE gift with purchase and other special savings opportunities! Sounds like a secret sale, but you know it’s gonna be awesome.

Hanky Panky: Every girls favorite, right?
The dealio: Their biggest sale of the year! Thongs as low as $11.99. Boyshorts and panties up to 50% off Camis and tops up to 50% off. Plus, FREE Ground shipping on all orders (no minimum purchase).

The Shops at Willow Bend: A mall filled with the Apple store, Neimans, Forever 21, Lacoste, and H&M. Must I go on?
The dealio: They are giving away $500 Mall Gift Cards to 13 people who register on Friday, November 25. The mall will open 8 a.m., and one $500 Mall Gift Card will be given away every hour on the hour beginning at 9 a.m. until the shopping center closes at 9 p.m. Hooray!

DANNIJO Jewelry aka the Man Repeller’s best friend literally and figuratively.
The dealio: DANNIJO is going to be 20% off site wide for Black Friday through Cyber Monday (excluding MR DANNIJO and Falling Whistles).

AllSaints Online: One of my must-stop places in Soho. The stunningly rustic store never fails to make me weak in the knees.
The dealio: When a trip to NYC is out of the question, snag bundles of stellar clothes for 25% off for the day, including accessories!

Victoria’s Secret Pink: The cutest sweat pants on the planet.
The dealio: They have a special crew neck hoodie for $25. They will also be doing the PINK Nation Panty free with any purchase from 11.29-12.7. That’s why we love pink so much!

Barney’s, Intermix, and Scoop: There are no special promos, but NEW SALE will be added. Hip hip hooray!

If you have some Black Friday scoop, comment below to share!! 

Jean Paul Gaultier Comes to Dallas: The Story Behind the Mannequins

There has been a hype around town, and I think it has to do with Jean Paul Gaultier bringing his world to Dallas. From the gaiety at the events leading up to this arrival to the unbelievable increase in sales for local boutique, Forty Five Ten, and resale shops carrying JPG clothing, the Big D is experiencing great expansion into the world of fashion. It is bringing a new air of inspiration to the city, and we all are noticing. Dallas fashion icon, Jan Strimple agrees: “Dallas is fashionably on fire! Having Jean Paul Gaultier in our city is exhilarating. It’s a feast for the eyes and soul. It captures his provocative nature, his proclivity for inclusiveness, and makes the viewer think.”

Not only was I honored to attend the press conference and soft launch of the Jean Paul Gaultier exhibit, “From the Catwalk to the Sidewalk” at the Dallas Museum of Art last Thursday, I also had the personal pleasure of sitting down with mannequin designer, Lucie Jolicoeur, and her brother over a lovely lunch to discuss the stories behind the extraordinary creations produced by Jolicoeur International.

What is so fascinating about the Quebec City native, Lucie Jolicoeur, is the immense passion for her work and the creative process. She is greatly dedicated to the quality of the manufacturing that she personally oversees the entire process in China. She assured me that an arm or a leg never gets shipped out without her approval. But what stunned me the most was the fact that nothing is made by a machine, resulting in one-of-a-kind mannequins, crafted with the most delicate care and attention to detail. For this exhibit, they were even transported by planes rather than the usual mode of transportation by boat in order to meet tight timelines.

A fascinating point of view: The Jean Paul Gaultier exhibit debuted in Montreal, and the shift to the Dallas scene caused for changes to the mannequins. Each mold was altered to fit the aesthetic and culture of this city. New, stronger positions with smaller waists countered the more relaxed postures displayed in Montreal. A major difference, in fact, surfaced in the posture of a man on his knees. The workers in China were esteemed to be part of such a “special” project and were quite intrigued by the idea of creating a male mannequin, which is at times a rarity.

Jolicoeur International took it one impressive step further by joining creative forces with a company to produce animation on the mannequins. They speak, blink, and even sing to the audience–something so innovative that we are all esteemed to have the chance to see.

A Personal Note: The mannequins are outstanding. From the distinct shape of their faces to the color of their skin, the model shapes collaborated beautifully with such an esteemed designer. The designs proudly filled the themed rooms–Boudoir, Skin Deep, Punk Can Can, Metropolis, and Urban Jungle, and they added such quality, witt, and personality to the entire exhibition. Bravo!

About the Exhibit

Making its U.S. premier on Sunday, November 13th, at the Dallas Museum of Art, the exhibit includes some 130 haute couture dresses and ready-to-wear pieces spanning the 1970′s through the present day. In addition to 30 animated mannequins, the multi-media experience also presents photographs, sketches, and film and television excerpts – some never before seen by the public.

Running through February 12th, 2012, The Fashion World of Jean Paul Gaultier will make only one additional stop stateside at the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, de Young, before heading on to Europe.

Admission to this exhibition requires a special ticket, starting at $16, available for purchase online, at the museum, or by phone at 214-922-1803. Click here for additional ticketing details. (Info from DFW Style Daily).

Flash Forward: The Rachel Roy Spring 2012 Collection

Tuesday morning something magical happened. I was transplanted out of my everyday routine and found myself heading down Broadway to view the Spring-Summer 2012 Rachel Roy and Rachel Rachel Roy collections…and can I just say she did a FABULOUS job!

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Rachel Rachel Roy Spring 2012 Collection — PRINTS PLEASE!

This collection is full of cheerful prints! Not only was the collection teeming with organic colors like citrus and lemon, but the overall essence emanating from the clothes is warm, exciting, and feminine — each piece expressing a different vibe, because no one day is the same. You’ll see pieces that embody a rocker chic nonchalance to polished interview ready confidence. I’ll let the the pieces do the talking themselves…they’re not shy…

The Rachel Rachel Roy Summer collection is nautically inspired. Like the Spring collection, there is something for everyone. I spotted everything from a sailboat dress(pictured below) reminiscent of something you would see in a J-Crew catalogue to a cop top/shorts combo perfect for the boho chic babe (and perfect for “crop-top Tuesday” if that’s your kind of thing). What’s fabulous about both the spring and summer pieces is that you can mix and match them within the collection to create so many different looks. When I was in the showroom I was channeling my inner Rachel Zoe and started styling a myriad of outfits by pairing different pieces together to create a look that was “me” and I know you can do the same! This collection makes it easy. Again in her summer line as with the spring, I’m impressed by the colors — lots of navy for the nautical aesthetic, of course, but there are some unexpected teals, mustard, and fucia accents throughout.

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Another thing I noticed about both Rachel Rachel Roy Spring and Summer collections was all of the little details. I often saw a piece and had to do a double take! Some jackets had a cut-out lace back, or a flap for a pocket, or a print change from the front to the back of a dress, etc. Each piece was so unique. I cannot wait for the lines to hit stores so I can go scoop up some of my favorites! You can shop the Rachel Rachel Roy Collection at Macy’s!

Next I went to view the jewelry! The jewelry and I got along swimmingly … pun intended. To go along with the nautical vibe in the clothes the jewelry featured items such as an octopus, snail and lobster rings — how seriously fun!

After viewing the Rachel Rachel Roy collections…

I went upstairs to view THE Rachel Roy Spring 2012 Collection — ROMANTIC MINIMALISM.  This collection was SO maj (MAJOR)!! Rachel’s inspiration for this collection is the colonial vietnam period in the 20’s and 30’s embodying “a modern simplicity through the balance of masculine and feminine shapes to create romantic yet refined moments.” It’s all about taking the masculine and re-crafting it to look alluring on a woman. This means a lot of soft suiting, color blocking, graphic prints, and black and white pairings that are to die for. It is a collection about inspiring women and taking an aspect of fashion that was off limits and making it our own, chic, and delicate.

I was seriously crushing on the nude leather accessories which included belts, shoes, bracelet cuffs, and a fab clutch (that will go with just about anything…#win!) For jewelry, Rachel did two necklaces that were made from resin and they were beyond gorgeous, and not heavy at all, surprisingly –very wearable — and talk about astatement necklace!

You can shop both collections on Rachel’s website or at net-a-porter.com.

Happy shopping!

Inside Thakoon’s Trunk Show at Forty Five Ten + His Favorite NYC Restaurant

The fabulous and noteworthy designer, Thakoon Panichgul, jetsetted to Dallas on Friday for his highly anticipated trunk show at the shopping mecca, Forty Five Ten.  Dallas bloggers and lovers of all things style came out to get a glimpse of Thakoon’s spring 2012 collection, which he labels as “Americana meets Maharaja.” His bold and print-saturated collection exquisitely combines western practicality with eastern-inspired colors, and his choice of patterns with gold accents and implemented embroidery make his collection an utter masterpiece. Thakoon donated ten percent of sales from his collection to TwoxTwo for AIDS and Art, which benefits AIDS research and the Dallas Museum of Art.

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We had a chat with Thakoon about the inspiration behind his designs, his favorite travel spot, and his go-to restaurant in the Big Apple.

Favorite restaurant in the Big Apple: Il Buco

Favorite travel spot: Tokyo; “If I haven’t been there for a while, I start to crave it.”

Favorite piece in the collection: “The long dresses.”