February 25, 2009

Erin Wasson x RVCA (New York/Los Angeles)

The ultimate downtown girl, model Erin Wasson became Alexander Wang's muse after he discovered they lived in the same East Village apartment building. Since then, Wasson has expanded her brand to include LowLuv, a line of chain jewelry that appears to be a direct copy of Bliss Lau's innovative body jewelry line, and now Erin Wasson x RVCA, a womenswear collaboration with a skateboard line that proved to be the literal toast of the town when it launched with one of the few parties at New York Fashion Week earlier this month. Drawing on her Texas roots while mining Wang's bottomless well of '80s references, the line features fringe details, denim jeans and vests, and saloon-ready garter straps, all mixed with oversized T-shirts. Innovator or imitator, Wasson certainly has a talent for channeling a moment, and her line has already garnered rave reviews -- and an upcoming Paris showing thanks to Opening Ceremony.

Photos via Refinery29

February 17, 2009

NYFW: Back from the Future

Looks like nobody got the memo about paring down for the recession, because, at first glance at least, this season's New York runway fashions are looking bigger and more bodacious than ever. Despite the looming threat of PETA demonstrations, several young designers dared to show fur for the first time, while longtime PETA target Donna Karan went fur-free. Marc Jacobs did big-shouldered neon '80s looks, It boy Alexander Wang stitched up leather harem pants and bandage everything, and on the ultra-cheap end of things, McQ for Target's pop-up store offered the masses zip-up mesh cardigans, weathered grey denim biker jackets, and neon-patterned bike shorts. On the up side, anyone who lived through the '80s the first time, and thought to keep their clothes, will save a fortune by re-wearing their graffitied Stephen Sprouse items and wasp-waisted leather blazers.

Photo via Style.com

February 11, 2009

News flash: Making it work, part 2

It's amazing how a little recession can foster a whole lot of creativity. Halston, it seems, has followed the trend we remarked on in our Holiday Bytes 2008, and created a video (pictured) instead of a runway show. Several young London designers, including Modernist and Antoni & Alison, are forgoing the runway for more budget-friendly presentation formats. And while mass-market chains are axing their spin-offs right and left, young New York designers are, in WWD's words, "invigorated by the challenging economy" -- rising to the occasion by paring down lines, skipping PV Paris, and discovering new ways to create their vision at a lower price point. Meanwhile, in Stockholm, new designers are pairing with graphic design and photography students to create splashy billboards to promote their brands. Yes they can!

February 10, 2009

News flash: NYC designers make it work, together!

The Cut reports today that the ever-resourceful NYC fashion industry is working collaboratively to afford Fashion Week. Jewelers and fashion designers are showing together; fashion designers are showing in one another's stores; models, stylists, and publicists are cutting their rates; and Betsey Johnson, caught up in the collective spirit, plans to offer champagne to "all of my guests... not just the front row!" In spite of the unfortunate Alexander Wang and Marc Jacobs party cancellations, maybe this recession won't be all bad.

February 3, 2009

News flash: Heads roll at Macy's, but there's a silver lining

The bad news: Macy's, the American department store chain, has announced it will lay off 7,000 employees. So what's the good news? The move is part of a new strategy to streamline the company's operations -- ending merit pay raises for executives, cutting this year's operating budget by 25 percent, and expanding a program to custom-tailor stores to their locales that will result in the creation of 1,200 new jobs.

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