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Canadian Arts and Fashion Awards to Create Stronger Appreciation for Local Designers

The CAFA award as designed by Karim Rashid,

The CAFA award as designed by Karim Rashid

The UK has the celeb-studded British Fashion Awards, the U.S. has the Council of Fashion Designers of America Awards, so why doesn't Canada have anything similar? That was my question until recently when the first Canadian Arts and Fashion Awards gala was announced to take place this February.

Created to give recognition to outstanding achievements in Canadian fashion design, the inaugural Canadian Arts & Fashion Awards (CAFA) gala will take place on Saturday, February 1, 2014 at the Fairmont Royal York in downtown Toronto.  Billed as the first event of its kind in Canada, nomination categories for this debut CAFAs will include designer of the year honours for womenswear, menswear and accessories, as well as model of the year, stylist of the year and an outstanding achievement award to celebrate the career of an established designer.

Of course, the awards agenda is all about keeping homegrown talent on Canadian soil and, by shining a spotlight on these artists, the CAFAs hope to create a stronger appreciation and market for local fashion. In turn this will help create an economic landscape in which creative business models can flourish so that Canadian talent can afford to remain here. Sounds very promising and, to make sure the event is a success, the CAFAs are backing themselves with an enviable roster of big name fashionistas.

Confirmed panel members include: media maven Jeanne Beker;, Elle Canada editor-in-chief Noreen Flanagan, Fashion Magazine editor-in-chief Bernadette Morra, Flare Magazine fashion director Tiyana Grulovic and Holt Renfrew’s vice-president, fashion editor Lisa Tant.

For the event itself there will be a VIP cocktail reception, dinner, live entertainment, the awards presentation and an after party. Entrance is via ticket — which doesn't come cheap at $10,000 for a table of 10 or $100 for individual entry. That's not the kind of dollar anyone can drop on one night of fashion and frolics, but if you'd still like to contribute in some way, the category for the Emerging Talent Award is open to self-nomination. If you think you have what it takes then head here to get in on the action and, if you win, remember where you came from!

Image via CAFA

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Simon Doonan and Jonathan Adler Argue About Who’s Groovier for Hamptons Magazine [Video]

Image: Hamptons Magazine

Image: Hamptons Magazine

Image: Hamptons Magazine

Image: Hamptons Magazine

The upcoming issue of Hamptons Magazine features Barneys Creative Ambassador Simon Doonan and home goods designer Jonathan Adler in their new Shelter Island home. To be honest, I typically turn down offers to peek inside luxurious Hamptons retreats belonging to wealthy lifestyle influencers (my blood pressure will one day thank me), but Doonan and Alder are, as my editor says, the charmingest. 

Hamptons made the genius decision to have the longtime couple interview each other for the main profile.

Here they are arguing over who's taller and whether or not they've just offended Helen Keller's heirs:

Simon: Jonathan—you contend that you are taller than me, and that is obviously not the case.
Jonathan: Helen Keller could see that I am three inches taller than you. Whatever gets you through the day, little fella. You are obviously delusional, and you are shorter than I am.
Simon: You’re making disrespectful, flippant references to Helen Keller, who was a wonderful, valued woman.
Jonathan: Helen Keller’s heirs—I am sorry if I offended you. But you, Simon, are freakishly undersized.

And another squabble, over which guy is the groovier one:

Jonathan: I’ve always had two authentic identities. I’ve always been authentically a potter, authentically bohemian. But I’ve also been authentically bourgeois. My challenge was how to reconcile my two authentic identities, and miraculously I’ve managed to do it. It’s just completely in my nature to be obsessed with design, but I also am kind of tszujy. You’re actually more bohemian than I am.
Simon: I am much more groovy and bohemian than you. 
Jonathan: I didn’t say 'groovy'; I said 'bohemian.' I am more groovy.

(Sidenote: There's quite a bit of precedent to Adler's point about merging 'bourgeois' and 'bohemian' identities. In 2000, The New York Times columnist David Brooks wrote a book on the subject called Bobos in Paradise: The New Upper Class and How They Got There. Brooks was critical of bobos, characterizing the group as former hippies and student protesters who had ascended to positions of power but retained the lifestyle trappings of their anti-establishmentarian youth. The portmanteau has since become common in Paris, where it's typically used in more flattering terms.)

It's very worth watching the behind-the-scenes video of the shoot (below), which features the Adler and Doonan's spiritual advisor (their dog, Liberace) and lots of adorable, happy giggling.

(And read the full interview here!)

Related: Simon Doonan: “Unless This [Royal] Baby Grows Up to Become Caligula or Something, It Sort Of Remains Deeply Uninteresting”

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Lulu Guinness Collaborates on Clutch Range with Artist Joseph Steele

If you missed the spectacular launch of the Lulu Guinness Paint Project, fear not as the gorgeous clutches are still available to buy online and in Lulu Guinness stores.

The British accessories designer has teamed up with contemporary artist Joseph Steele and beautiful Crime to create a line of innovative decorated clutches. Steele is known for exploding paint across the canvas to create stunning pieces of art, and this time he’s used the bag as his medium. The result? Although the bags follow a basic design pattern, no two clutches are entirely identical, and this means that in essence, you’ll have your very own bespoke clutch.

lulu guinness bags

The Hug and Hold clutches are currently retailing at £295 and are available in black, red or stone hues. The pieces make up a limited-edition collection but what else would you expect when you’re being treated to a unique piece of artwork by a leading artist? The clutches are the perfect buy for the woman who likes to be a bit of a trendsetter, or even just somebody who needs something fashionable to carry their iPad around in. And we all know too well just how difficult it is to find a really stylish iPad bag!

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Cosmo Australia Recycles Flare Mag’s 3-Year-Old Miranda Kerr Cover — Minus Some Photoshop

Image: FashionModelDirectory (left) / Cosmopolitan Australia FB (right)

Image: FashionModelDirectory (left) / Cosmopolitan Australia FB (right)

Looking at Cosmpolitan Australia's August 2013 cover (right) featuring Miranda Kerr, eagle-eyed tFS forum member Eterna noticed that the publication recycled the image from Canadian fashion magazine Flare's Fall 2010 issue, but ran it with significantly less airbrushing. Flare's cover (left) shows the model with lighter skin, an irresponsibly lean torso and a narrower face — it looks like Kerr's had the life sucked out of her. 

The model initially posed for the cover shot as part of a lingerie story for Flare (there's a behind-the-scenes video from the 2010 shoot here), which is owned by Rogers Communication, a Toronto-based media company which has an established partnership with divisions of Hearst Corporation, the New York City publishing giant which operates the global Cosmopolitan brand. 

It's not too uncommon for magazines to license and reuse cover images (here's Jessica Alba on the front of British GQ November 2010; here she is again, just flipped horizontally and Photoshopped into 80s neons, on the cover of Shape Russia's April 2012 issue), but it is rare to see a redux that's better than the original. 

RelatedAmber Heard Disappoints on the Cover of Flare’s September 2013 Issue (Forum Buzz)

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People Are Way Too Excited About the H&M E-Commerce Launch

Image: Huffpo Style Screengrab

Image: Huffpo Style Screengrab

People are responding to the news that H&M is launching online shopping in the U.S. with a degree of enthusiasm formerly reserved for the birth of royal babies or the acquisition of kittens.

The front page of Huffington Post's Style section, for example, leads with the headline: "BEST. DAY. EVER."

The reactions on social media matched HuffPo's in intensity. Some were "actually in tears," others were praying and expressing their gratitude to a higher power. I'm not joking:


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Amber Heard Disappoints on the Cover of Flare’s September 2013 Issue (Forum Buzz)


All images via

You would think Flare would pull out the big guns for its September issue (side note: can you believe we’re seeing September covers already?), but this Amber Heard cover falls completely flat. Photographed by Kurt Iswarienko, the cover features Amber against a bland rosy pink background with a green masthead. This “ultimate fashion issue” is supposedly “fresh for fall!” but the whole thing feels so stale. But at least her hair looks pretty, right?

“I don't think I've ever seen her look so ridiculously boring before,” Psylocke commented. “She's one of the sexiest actresses and here she looks completely lifeless and depressing. Also, what the hell is that layout? Could all the text drown her any more? Yuck, this is bad. Great timing to have her on the cover now that her relationship with Johnny Depp went public, though,” she quipped.

HeatherAnne was also unimpressed. “I’ve always found her super generic looking and uninteresting, and this just reemphasizes that notion to me,” she wrote.

Mat Cyruss seems to have given up on Flare altogether. “Wake me when they have a nice cover again,” he posted.

The editorial images are a bit less bland than the cover, but if you’re not enticed to even crack the magazine open, then really, what’s the point?

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