Image: courtesy Fashionista
Chris Benz is at the start of a new chapter in his career and we can’t wait to see what he does. The designer took some time off from his eponymous label in 2013, but now he’s back, this time at the helm of Bill Blass, which hasn’t shown a collection since 2012. There has been a lot of mystery around Benz’s hiatus from his own brand, which the designer cleared up yesterday during Fashionista’s meetup at Space 350.
“In some ways, we told all the stories for that girl and when we started, that girl was very of that minute,” he said. “We sort of shifted gears aesthetically in the world. At that time, everything was black, so when we did color it was like, ‘Oh, that was a colorful jewel of a collection.’ As we wound everything up, it was Rick Owens, Alex Wang. The aesthetic [of the time] didn’t support what the aesthetic of the brand was.”
It also seems Benz was plagued by the general fatigue that comes with the rigors of having to constantly produce so many new collections. “The hardest part for me was having to churn out hundreds of new products every four months, literally from scratch. Because that’s what designer fashion is. You have to come up with four great ideas plus a hundred more every four months.” It is a reason many designers cite for repositioning their brands, or ditching them altogether. Viktor & Rolf recently stepped away from ready-to-wear, calling the process of creating so many collections “creatively restricting.” John Galliano has also mentioned that the stressful schedule was part of the reason why his drug and alcohol abuse got so out of control.
Benz quietly took a break and he is very pleased with the way he handled what could have been a media frenzy. “I think I did great in winding down my collection,” he said with the kind of charming satisfaction we come to expect from him. “I did not do one interview, I did not do one story, I didn’t make it into a thing. Fashion loves a headline, they love to build people up and then tear them down.”
We expect a lot more building up in Benz’s future once his work for Bill Blass hits stores this fall.
Kering is taking a stand on environmental transparency with their Environmental Profit and Loss report, tracking the company’s environmental footprint. H&M recently released its own analysis on its environmental footprint and the steps it is taking to minimize its impact. Cool girl cult brand Reformation also released the “RefScale,” which tracks the amount of water and carbon dioxide the company uses to make its clothes. Kering is following these examples in this latest report, which finds that the majority of the environmental impact they have starts early in the production process.
“Three quarters of the total impacts are at the start of the supply chain – with half the impacts associated with raw material production and a further quarter of the images associated with raw material processing including leather tanning, refining metals and textile spinning,” it reads. This document measures the environmental impact in dollars and cents, as a “new way of estimating the cost to society of the changes in the environment as a result of our business activities and those of the whole of our supply chain,” the company says. “In contrast to financial accounting, there are currently no established and agreed standards for estimating this value.” Hopefully by putting the impact in terms of money, other businesses can comprehend what production is really doing to the environment. The report revealed that Kering had about $861.6 million dollars (€773 million euros) of impact on the environment in 2013. Half of Kering’s impact lies in the production of raw materials like leather and wool.
Kering also outlined what it’s trying to do to decrease their impact. For example, with leather, Kering is joining forces with Origem to seek out ways to source cow leather at a low impact. The report also mentions vertical integration, noting that the company has already purchased four tanneries so that they can have more control regarding the environmental cost of making leather. Kering has also adopted tanning methods that reduce energy use by 20% and water use by 30%.
If anything, the report positions Kering as a leader in attempting to create a more sustainable presence in the luxury markets. By joining forces with environmentally-minded groups that are working to decrease the impact clothing production has on the world, it seems Kering is really committed to making its environmental footprint smaller.
Town & Country rarely makes an appearance on our forums but since the beautiful Jennifer Connelly is on the cover, the title’s June/July 2015 edition was sure to grab our attention. It shouldn’t come as a surprise that Jennifer wears a creation by Nicolas Ghesquière for Louis Vuitton , as the designer credits the actress as his muse, even signing her up to star in the brand’s Spring 2015 advertising campaign. Victor Demarchelier photographed Connelly posing in a vintage car and we’re sold!
Our forum members flocked to the thread to add their two cents. “Very modern, definitely a breath of fresh air,” raved elle_gb.
“She’s so beautiful and classy,” complimented justaguy, giving major props to T&C’s cover star.
Miss Dalloway gave the cover a rave review too. “Gorgeous, even with all that text,” she said.
In agreement was Benn98: “What a lovely shot. Even though I cannot stand any more of these Louis Vuitton looks, this looks great here. The cover sentences are actually quite short, don’t know why it’s taking up all the space.”
“Yep, so bored of her in Louis Vuitton. Can never get over how stunning she is though,” responded HeatherAnne.
“Beautiful shot, too bad the cover is a bit too crowded,” shared Thefrenchy.
Did Town & Country go overboard with the cover lines? Join the conversation here.
In addition to being one of the biggest pop stars in the world, Rihanna is also full of wisdom. Just ask Cara Delevingne, who turned to the star after hitting a snag in her rise to Hollywood glory, now that the Beach Boys film she was supposed to star in has been scrapped. Fortunately for Cara, she had Rihanna to cheer her up.
Cara told WSJ that she was “heartbroken” to hear the Beach Boys movie would not go through, so for support, she rang good ol’ Riri who told her, “Everything happens for a reason. You are going to call me back in a week or two and say, ‘You are right.’” Of course she’s right, she’s Rihanna. How can someone able to look so fierce in a gown that looks like an omelette not give the best advice ever?
At any rate, Cara is pushing forward with her dreams of Hollywood greatness and has plenty of acting roles lined up. She will appear in the Pan movie this summer, Kids in Love, Suicide Squad and recently nabbed a role in sci-fi flick Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets, which will be directed by Luc Besson. She also has a starring role in the film adaptation of John Green’s Paper Towns, hitting theaters July 24.
Still, she says sometimes honing her craft is difficult due to her experience as a high fashion model. “With acting, the last thing you do is try to look pretty,” she says. “Modeling actually makes acting harder—it makes you so self-aware.” But in spite of the challenges she faces as she begins to blossom into a proper actress – not one of those “cliché” model/actress types – it’s clear that Cara is making strides and won’t be slowing down anytime soon.
We can’t lie, though, we would have loved to see Cara sing a tune or two in that Beach Boys film.
Last week, we had an exclusive peek at Marie Claire‘s June 2015 cover but now the official images have been unveiled and we can take a closer look. Photographer Jen Welters captured Rachel McAdams flipping her hair back over her shoulders and wearing a floral print dress by Erdem. We’re often left a little underwhelmed by the American edition of the Hearst-owned title, but forum members took an immediate liking to this cover.
“Oh my, this made me sit up! Definitely not what I had in mind when I read the title. I love it, it’s a fresh approach. Great dress as well. Magazines always photograph Rachel with that girl-next door vibe. It’s tiring,” enthused Benn98.
“I think it is the best cover of US Maire Claire in months. Finally their layout is not an eyesore,” admired GlamorousBoy.
Also full of appreciation was Miss Dalloway: “One of their best covers, its fresh, unexpected, and for a title like MC not a safe cover image, at all.”
“Love this! So nice to see something different for a celebrity cover,” responded justaguy.
TeeVanity agreed, echoing, “It’s quite lovely. I enjoy seeing Rachel on covers she always has a sweet flare about her.”
“Great to see the beautiful Ms. McAdams, she has a big year coming up! They even found a way to disguise the harsh two-tone hair color she has for True Detective, so props to Marie Claire,” HeatherAnne raved in agreement.
Nepenthes was also full of enthusiasm. “Love this. Rachel looks gorgeous!” she wrote.
Check out Rachel’s cover story and the rest of the content inside out thread. Don’t forget to add your own two cents here.
The number of brands under the Procter & Gamble umbrella just got a little smaller now that the company is said to have sold Frédéric Fekkai to Fekkai Brands. Earlier this year, Frédéric Fekkai was said to be looking for ways to buy back his brand from the P&G giant, telling WWD that his moves to reclaim his label had been fruitless. “I was trying; I’m not succeeding,” he said. “I don’t know exactly what happened. I will still be involved with the brand. I will always be involved.”
Fekkai Brands is a joint venture of Shaneel Enterprises subsidiaries Luxe Brands and Designer Parfums. Shaneel Enterprises is a supplier of fragrance brands like Jennifer Lopez, Carolina Herrera, Calvin Klein, Hugo Boss and more. P&G’s beauty brands include CoverGirl, Max Factor, Dolce & Gabbana, Pantene, Head & Shoulders, SK-II and Old Spice, to name just a few.
P&G has not officially come forward to announce the sale, but is expected to do so later today.