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Flashback: Vogue Italia ‘A Black Issue’ July 2008 with Naomi, Liya, Sessilee and Jourdan by Steven Meisel

We're back after a little hiatus of our flashback series. Ask yourself this question: What first comes to mind when thinking of a themed issue of a fashion magazine? Vogue Italia's controversial, yet powerfully stunning, 'A Black Issue'? Correct.

I can vividly remember the mass of buzz circulating the forums regarding this issue of Italian Vogue. I hadn't taken much notice of Franca Sozzani's Vogue until I had become interested in this particular hotly-debated issue featuring only black models, photographed by Steven Meisel. After a thread of almost 800 comments had spawned within the forum, I was becoming increasingly transfixed on this historic edition.

Naturally, I rushed out to the store to make a purchase and came home with Naomi Campbell's cover. My local store had all four covers (Liya Kebede, Jourdan Dunn, Sessilee Lopez and Noami Campbell), although what was I going to do with four covers of the same issue? I left the store with Noami's in hand and thought I would let other customers have their pick of the others (a sorry mistake after realizing how much the issue would later retail for online).

Vogue Italia July 2008 Jourdan Dunn

IMAGE CREDIT: SCANNED BY TFS MEMBER BLACKANGEL41999 VIA TFS FORUMS

The contents of this 346-page issue are a sheer delight. Italian Vogue regular Steven Meisel photographed six stories with the likes of Naomi Campbell, Tyra Banks, Toccara Jones, Yasmin Warsame and Sessilee Lopez, to name only just a few.

My favorite story from the entire issue is 'How to Dazzle' which was shot by Meisel and features American model Sessilee Lopez. The black and white images consist of a fierce and ruthless-looking Lopez shot in the studio and wearing creations from fashion houses such as Louis Vuitton, Lanvin, Dolce & Gabbana and Yves Saint Laurent.

Vogue Italia July 2008 All Covers

IMAGE CREDIT: VOGUE.IT

Which cover did you get for yourself? Are you still on the hunt? You can familiarize yourself with the content and lose yourself amongst the two threads here.

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Exclusive: Arena Homme+ Goes Intergalactic for the Spring 2014 Issue

Arena Homme + Spring 2014 Cover David Sims

Image: David Sims for Arena Homme+

For the Spring 2014 issue of Arena Homme+, the biannual men's fashion journal has released three space-themed covers (two of these were photographed by David Sims). The issue also features an exclusive look at designer Raf Simons' collaboration with the artist Sterling Ruby (we'll have a preview up on tFS tomorrow). 

Lee Scratch Perry Arena Homme+ Cover

Image: David Sims for Arena Homme+

Elsewhere in the issue, Peter Doig interviews fellow painter Markus Lupertz, photographers Araki and Juergen Teller write about one another, and shoe designer Manolo Blahnik talks classic Hollywood. And that's the reason the AH+ tagline reads, "All Killer, No Filler Since 1993."

Arena Homme + Spring 2014 Cover

Image: Arena Homme+

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Jean Paul Gaultier Took the Queen to the London Opening of His Exhibition?

Never one to conform to the norm, the classic ‘enfant terrible’ Jean Paul Gaultier entered the press viewing of his retrospective exhibition, The Fashion World Of Jean Paul Gaultier: From The Sidewalk To The Catwalk, with none other than the Queen of England on his arm, of course. Well perhaps not the actual Queen but a fabulously stylish lookalike in full finery, whilst Gaultier in true form arrived in a tuxedo with a twist as he flashed his white thigh out of a thigh-high split maxi skirt.

Jean Paul Gaultier entered the press viewing of his retrospective exhibition The Fashion World Of Jean Paul Gaultier: From The Sidewalk To The Catwalk

Gaultier and his new gal (image: WENN)

The exhibition opens to the public at London’s Barbican Gallery today after travelling the world since it opened in Canada three years ago, and expectedly everyone has been eagerly awaiting its opening in its new London home until August 25.

Out to celebrate with the Gallic designer were many of his close friends and collaborators including a heavily pregnant Erin O’Connor and his long time friend and muse Farida Khelfa, who were serenaded by Rufus Wainwright on the piano whilst sipping cocktails handed out by waiters decked out in Gaultier’s classic nautical stripes and conical bustiers.

Gaultier exhibition Punk enthused patriotism for Britain

Punk enthused patriotism for Britain (image: WENN)

Whilst Gaultier might appear to take nothing seriously, you can immediately see in the 165 ready-to-wear and haute couture pieces on show, just how painstakingly dedicated he is when it comes to fashion and design.

Working for over 38 years in the industry, the self-taught designer has created a creative and controversial legacy for himself, from the infamous conical bra of Madonna’s 1990 Blonde Ambition tour to his more recent homage to Amy Winehouse in his Spring 2012 collection, there is definitely more to the man than mere whimsy.

There is almost too much to take in at the two-floor retrospective with every piece telling another story, but one thing for sure is that you can never get bored of Gaultier!

Up close and personal with the infamous Gaultier conical bustiers

Up close and personal with the infamous conical bustiers (image: WENN)

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Who’s That Guy? Raif Adelberg Hits the Mainstream

A little over a year ago, few people had heard of Winnipeg-born designer Raif Adelberg, who first cut his teeth running eminent Vancouver clothing boutique, Richard Kidd, from 2004 to 2008. Vogue and Style.com referred to it as one of the top stores to visit in the world, but stepping away from the register, Adelberg has since set out alone, establishing his own eponymous label.

Raif Alderberg at Barneys

Beginning with a luxury cashmere collection for men in the fall of 2011, which was quickly scooped up by Bergdorf Goodman NY, Adelberg moved on to a women’s collection for Spring 2014 that was picked up by Barneys. There he now sells oversized punk tie-dye cardigans in blues and reds, soft leather shorts with gently ruched waistbands and V-neck cashmere sweaters in openwork knits.

Prices are eye-watering at around $1000 a piece (duties and the like not included), but having opened a pop-up shop in Vancouver this past Christmas, I’m hoping he’ll do the same for his Fall 2014 collection, the eerily titled “Ghost in the Machine.” He tells Fashion that the theme is reminiscent of how he currently feels living on Bowen Island, BC.

Images via Barneys

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Link Buzz: Bobbi Brown Named EIC of Yahoo Beauty; New Dove Commercial Deemed ‘Bullsh*t’

  • Image: Joseph Marzullo/WENN.com

    Image: Joseph Marzullo/WENN.com

    Makeup mogul Bobbi Brown has just signed on as the editor-in-chief of Yahoo's beefy new beauty vertical. [The Guardian]
     
  • Brooks Brothers may be collaborating on preppy staples like seersucker suits with skate brand Supreme. [Racked]
     
  • Time for the fashion funnies. [FabSugar]
     
  • Dior and I, a new documentary about Raf Simons' first few days at Dior, has just premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival and it sounds fantastic. [The Cut]
     
  • It's fashion week in Australia and do you know what that means? There are people on the street, looking stylish. [BellaSugar]
     
  • Dove's newest commercial deemed "bullsh*t." [Jezebel]

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At a Glance: Two Decades of Teen Fashion Trends (and How Popular They Were)

teenagers girls shopping 90s

Image: Getty

Teenagers! They are moody, pimply and not very nice to each other. They Snapchat, sleep late and possess underdeveloped frontal lobes. 

They also have massive purchasing power — which tops out at $819 billion globally — and a big stake in pop culture. No wonder teenage retail is such a fiercely competitive segment; and no wonder so many full-grown adults take their style cues from teen fashion trends (cough cough Hedi Slimane). 

Here's a chart we spotted today on the digital financial outlet Quartz, which shows how these two factors — retail sales and teen clothing trends — have played out over the past two decades: 

teenage retail and fashion trends

Image: Piper Jaffray via Quartz

The index above, created by the investment bank Piper Jaffray, shows when specific fashion trends were popular over the past twenty years and how they correspond to underlying teen retail sales growth. So for example: you can see that chinos were big in the late Nineties, during a retail boom period, and that skinny jeans correspond to the recent period of economic decline.

"The economic cycle has a much bigger bearing on apparel retailers than fashion preferences do," writes John McDuling for Quartz. However, fashion trends are still somewhat connected to the overall economic outlook, as evidenced by the period representing 9/11 in the graph above: Both the sudden decline in sales and the depressing dominant fashion trend ("bleak colors") were presumably directly connected to the tragic event which preceded them. 

So where are we now? Coming out of the recession, Piper Jaffray is cautiously optimistic: 

"[The firm] thinks the beginnings of a 'replenishment cycle' led by colored denim pants could already be underway. However, it says, consumers are in 'pause' mode as they focus on 'editing' rather than 'investment' in their wardrobes. For growth to really return, Piper Jaffray argues, something bigger would be needed, ideally suitable for both sexes, wearable by people of all ages and sizes, and novel enough to get them to buy." 

[Two decades of American teen fashion in a single chart — Quartz]

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