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Your Mercedes-Benz StartUp Winner is…

Now in its third year, the Mercedes-Benz StartUp competition aims to draw upcoming fashion talent from across the country, culminating in a World MasterCard Fashion Week showdown to select the winner of a coveted prize of mentorship, a Fashion magazine spread, a runway show in the next season and, more importantly, exposure. Previous winners have included Martin Lim and DUY, but let me tell you that this year’s competition, which took place on Day Two at the tents, was a humdinger!

The 2013 MBSU show kicked things off with a parade of tropical vintage summerwear from, my personal favourite, Dreamboat Lucy, before moving into Eliza Faulkner’s athletic linens. Following suit came fellow finalists Faded Lifestyle, Hip and Bone, Pedram Karimi and HD Homme, each showing a strong presence of menswear, while Malorie Urbanovitch and Matière Noire both played with minimalism and structure in their respective collections.

After eight designers sent their troops down the runway, it was then down to the judges to make their decision. A call that was easier said than done for Editor-in-chief at Fashion, Bernadette Morra; fashion director of Holt Renfrew, Barbara Atkin; fashion personality Jeanne Beker; global production director at IMG Fashion, Jarrad Clark; director of communications and public relations at Mercedes-Benz Canada, JoAnne Caza; and president of the Fashion Design Council of Canada, Robin Kay.

This is where things got interesting and the audience got restless as, in an unprecedented move, the judges were deadlocked in their decision to name just one winner and so the award was given to two: Edmonton’s Malorie Urbanovitch and Celine Raizonville of Montreal-based Matiere Noire! It seemed they loved Urbanovitch's command of natural fabrics equally as much as they adored Matière Noire’s bold horizontal striping, snuggly knits and visible fraying. I would contend that the judges couldn’t pick between the two because they were somewhat similar, but each upped the wearability ante more than any of the other six designers.

MBSU 1

You can see something of the winners' style in the photos (left Urbanovitch, right Matiere Noire) and, in case you missed the going-ons at Day 1 of World MasterCard Fashion Week, check out the highlight reel here,

MBSU 2

Images via WMCFW

The Buzz Latest News

Top 5 Kimye Wedding Branding Opportunities

Getty

Getty

Take a mere glance at yesterday's announcement that Kim Kardashian and Kanye West are merging their two empires and two corporate name checks jump out at you:

"Yo, I'mma let you finish committing to me for 72-days-to-life, but the headline is that the 15-karat ring is by Lorraine Schwartz and the proposal took place at AT&T Park." In fact, both product placement opportunities are prominently displayed in Kim's Instagram photo posted minutes after she accepted Yeezy's proposal. AT&T Park is so prominent in every headline and photo that it seems impossible that Kim and Kanye did not benefit monetarily from hosting the proposal there. The story goes that Kanye rented out the park for Kim's birthday celebration and surprised her with a proposal. Circumstances make it seem more likely that at the very least the surely expensive party was provided gratis in exchange for the publicity the venue would surely receive by having such a massive media event unfold on their premises.

That got us thinking, what other branding opportunities does the Kimye wedding serve up?

Pharmaceutical Sponsors

Well, we know the birth control ship has sailed, but there are a myriad of physical and mental ailments guests of the Kim Kardashian/Kanye West wedding could suffer from. There's the anxiety of preparing for a such a high profile event, and the subsequent depression and feelings of inadequacy after realizing that the amount spent on the wedding is more than you or your progeny will earn in your lifetimes. The drugs could be milled with gold dust for a gorgeous little pill emblazoned with a K.

(more…)

The Buzz Forum Buzz

Irina Shayk Fronts the November Issue of Spanish Vogue (Forum Buzz)

Irina Shayk on the cover of Vogue Spain November 2013

image credit: oliviasobsession.com via the tFS forums

“It's going to sell like hot cakes, that's for sure,” predicted Creative when rumors about Irina Shayk’s appearance on the cover of the November issue of Vogue Spain surfaced, hinting at the model’s popularity in Spain thanks to her high-profile relationship with Real Madrid superstar Cristiano Ronaldo. Shot by Giampaolo Sgura, the cover shows Irina posing in front of a tree, looking sexy and beautiful as ever.

Forum member valliaddict posted, “Her face looks amazing. I wish they would've styled her in something else, but the cover is still nice.”

Irina Shayk in the editorial shot by Giampaolo Sgura

image credit: womenmanagement via the tfs forums

“Wish there wasn't a banner, I mean with all that text already, why?!!! But otherwise such a gorgeous cover image of her, and I love that it’s outside, it captures my mood at the moment,” commented Miss Dalloway.  

“I love it… It's a great fall cover. Very 90s American Vogue,” added A.D.C.

It is uncommon that tFS forum members get overly excited by the sight of a more commercial model on a Vogue cover, but happycanadian was another one who had no complaints with this cover. He wrote, “Say what you want about her, but Irina is an absolutely STUNNING woman. Seriously, just take a moment and imagine running into her in the street. She would literally take your breath away. I’m happy to see her on a cover.”

Truth is, you can get away with unimaginative styling and a questionable layout when you have a truly captivating beauty gracing your cover. If she is willing to talk about her relationship with her mega-famous boyfriend in the interview (the cover tagline translates as “Cristiano knows how to make me happy”), even better. This may not be a groundbreaking concept or iconic image, but it’s a solid cover and Vogue Spain more than likely did everything right here.

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How Will the New Model Law Affect New York Fashion Week Next Season?

Image: IMAXtree

Image: IMAXtree

Last night, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo signed a bill closing the legal loophole which treats under-18 models differently from other child performers. The legislation was lobbied for by The Model Alliance, a labor organization which was founded in February 2012 by former model (turned documentarian) Sara Ziff. From the outset, Ziff counted both top models (like Coco Rocha) and New York's most influential fashion institutions (like Vogue and the CFDA) among her supporters. The new law, which represents The Model Alliance's first legal victory, goes into effect in 30 days.

This afternoon, the CFDA issued an advisory to members, explaining how the new regulations might impact casting for next season's New York Fashion Week shows. Designers who wish to hire models younger than 18* will have to abide by a strict set of rules. 

A breakdown of the new rules, via the CFDA website:

  • Requirements of filing paperwork with the state
  • Limiting the work hours of models who are minors and letting them leave before midnight on school nights or 12:30 a.m. on weekends
  • Making sure that 15% of the model’s fee is put in a trust account until he or she is 18
  • Making sure that models do not miss 3 or more consecutive days of school without providing a tutor
  • For models under 16 (who would violate the CFDA Health Initiative rules for runway but might be used for junior or children’s lines, for example), must provide a chaperone

For designers who hope to continue casting their shows with underage girls, the new time constraints will pose a challenge — models report working long, late hours during fashion week. Last year, Jezebel uncovered the Tumblr of a 17-year-old model who described her grueling fashion week schedule — which included working over 30 hours, unpaid, for Marc Jacobs ahead of his NYFW show, often until 2 or 4 a.m. in the morning. 

This August we spoke with a producer at Models.com who suggested that under the new legislation, the challenges associated with hiring underage models might amplify the cachet of youth, tempting designers to bend the rules to work with super-young models: "A girl is a new type of special if a brand is willing to use her and just pay the fine. Ideally everyone will mind their P's and Q's, though. "


*As part of the organization's health initiative, the CFDA advises designers not hire models under 16, but doesn't enforce its guidelines. In fact, last year Marc Jacobs (a CFDA board member) was heavily criticized but faced no other repercussions when he cast two underage models in his Fall 2013 show. 

The Buzz Latest News

eBay Presents the Future of Shopping: It Involves Pin-Boards and Pharrell

Image: Instagram/TheFashionSpotOfficial

Image: Instagram/TheFashionSpotOfficial

Earlier today, eBay hosted a press conference to unveil a series of new features, geared towards transforming the tech company's reputation. 

eBay wants to be seen as a retailer for new merchandise, and not just an auction site. In his opening remarks at this morning's event, company President Devin Wenig noted that 75% of goods listed on eBay are available for immediate purchase at a set retail price. 

The company has already begun to leverage its relationships with high-volume retailers like Macy's and Target with its same-day delivery service, eBay Now, which was previously limited to San Francisco and New York City. As of today, eBay Now has expanded its operations to the Chicago area and will continue to roll out to 25 cities by the end of next year. (Wenig hilariously described this initiative as "shopping locally.")

The second major component to eBay's announcement: The launch of a Pinterest-style proprietary image-driven social platform, called eBay Today, which will appear on the site's homepage. Users will be able to "curate" and share collections of shoppable items with other eBay visitors.

eBay tapped a broad range of influencers and celebrities to create some of the first collections for the site. Performer Pharrell Williams (who attended the conference this morning as eBay's confused celebrity guest), Mad Men costumer Janie Bryant and designer Chris Benz have already contributed pin boards to the site. 

The Buzz Latest News

Link Buzz: Anna Wintour Reportedly Wants Lena Dunham for Vogue; Interview with Betty Halbreich

Lena-Dunham-M

  • “Anna is trying to seduce Lena into bringing her next-generation audience into the Vogue brand." [RadarOnline]
     
  • Arizona Muse's ex-boyfriend and his woes continue to surface in the press. [PageSix]
     
  • Your LBD might be all the Halloween costume you need. [FabSugar]
     
  • Widows peakers, this way. [BellaSugar]
     
  • Watch Betty Halbreich discuss the "terrible thing" she does. [Fashionologie]
     
  • You can literally walk a mile in Lauren Conrad's $60 shoes. [SheFind]

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