Thursday, March 13, 2014

LVMH Announces Its Twelve Fashion Prize Finalists

The panel of experts has spoken, the votes are in, and today we can announce the twelve talents who will move on to the final round of the heated LVMH Prize for Young Fashion Designers competition. Atto by Julien Dossena, CG by Chris Gelinas, Gabriele Colangelo, Shayne Oliver’s Hood by Air, Jacquemus by Simon Porte Jacquemus, Miuniku by Nikita and Tina Sutradhar, Thomas Tait, Tillmann Lauterbach, Tim Coppens, Simone Rocha, Suno by Max Osterweis and Erin Beatty, and Vika Gazinskaya will go head-to-head for the award’s 300,000 euro grant. 
But wait, you might be thinking. Weren’t there only supposed to be ten finalists? Yes, but LVMH’s team of forty industry insiders simply could not decide after surveying the work of the competition’s thirty semifinalists during an event at Paris fashion week. “It’s so hard,” offered Louis Vuitton’s executive vice president Delphine Arnault, who has been spearheading the initiative. “When we compiled the votes, four designers all had the same amount, so we let twelve in. I think it’s good.” We’re sure the finalists would agree.
The dozen men’s and womenswear designers, who hail from round the globe, will each have fifteen minutes to present their Fall ’14 collections at the LVMH headquarters in May. Judges including Karl Lagerfeld, Raf Simons, Nicolas Ghesquière, Marc Jacobs, Riccardo Tisci, and others will consider their efforts, and later choose a winner. 

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Louis Vuitton FALL 2014 READY-TO-WEAR

Few designers are as beloved, respected, or copied as Ghesquière is, and he's been off the scene and badly missed since his departure from Balenciaga a year and a half ago. Only Raf Simons' debut at Dior was as breathlessly anticipated as Ghesquière's at Vuitton. 
As the metal blinds of the Cour Carree show space opened to bright sun, Freja Beha Erichsen emerged in a black leather snap-front coat with a wide caramel-colored collar, carrying the new Petite Malle bag, a miniature LV trunk at her fingertips. The coat's flared A-line cut and abbreviated thigh-high hem was the show's predominant silhouette, but if that shape cued a 1960s vibe, the workmanship was 21st-century state of the art.You won't find a more luxurious coat than the black crocodile shown here, despite its industrial zip front, or a jacket as well made as the one he patchworked in different colored leathers.
Naturally, there were a lot of skins, a lot of suede, a lot of leather, and naturally Ghesquière used them in innovative ways. A pair of cool evening looks had molded leather bodices and knit skirts aswirl with hand-cut feathers. Elsewhere, the designer's famous flair for experimentation was somewhat scaled back. (That mostly holds true for the bags as well, save for a double-handled style that in fact came with just one handle.) That came across in an outfit like the checked three-button blazer accompanied by glossy leather jeans and a red cardigan with a frilly white collar underneath, and in another that consisted of a white turtleneck, a trim black jacket, and a skirt in wool and crinkly leather, the new LV suit. And in a third that was as straightforward as a ski sweater and a belted A-line mini can be. Skirts and dresses were squarely the focus, yet fans of Ghesquière's life-changing trousers could take heart at the sight of a high-waisted style into which he tucked a khaki jacket. In any case, there will be plenty of seasons for pants. This was a great beginning, understated but not without power, for Ghesquière and the new Louis Vuitton.