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Forum Buzz: Praise for Penelope Cruz’s Vogue Cover; Patrick Robinson Falls Out of the Gap

Penelope Cruz photographed by Mario Testino for Vogue - June 2011 issueFreckles and All…

Vogue is getting rave reviews for featuring a fresh-faced and freckled Penelope Cruz, photographed by Mario Testino, on its June 2011 cover. In a time where we’re more often exposed to an over-abundance of Photoshop on magazine covers that sometimes renders actresses and models nearly unrecognizable, it’s refreshing to see a lovely close-up where perceived flaws such as freckles have been left well enough alone.

“Love the freckles they didn't airbrush,” IAmLordZen complimented. Lucy92 wrote, “I had no idea she had freckles in the first place. I think it’s a lovely cover.”

“This is gorgeous! So 90s actually,” cottonmouth13 posted his adoration. Could the 90s vibe come from the lack of extreme airbrushing? The 90s was the era of the slim yet strong, healthy, and glamorous supermodel, so it’s a compliment to be sure in terms of this cover. That look is one 90s trend I would be happy to see more of.

MulletProof, who can be a tough but fair critic, congratulated Vogue on a job well done. “Looks pretty amazing… really really impressed with the direction US Vogue has been taking lately,” she wrote. “Nothing's been drastically changed, it's just refined.” If this is what Vogue’s refinement looks like, then I’ll happily take it.


Patrick Robinson - former Gap designerPatrick Robinson Falls Out of the Gap

It’s no secret that things over at the Gap aren’t going so well, and it seems that big-name design chief Patrick Robinson (who previously designed for Perry Ellis, Paco Rabanne, Giorgio Armani, and Anne Klein), has officially fallen out of favor and been dismissed from his position. He was originally a buzz-worthy addition to the Gap when he joined them in 2007, but apparently the bloom is off the rose and he’s failed to deliver results that transfer to sales.

The news of Robinson’s dismissal didn’t come as much of a surprise to Fashion Spot forum members. TianSoFine thinks “it's about time that he's dismissed. These days, Gap isn't what it used to be.”

HeatherAnne shared a similar opinion, “I hate to celebrate anyone's firing, but I have to admit I'm glad he's gone! The Gap needs to go back to making quality basics; their clothes lately are poorly cut and constructed and their attempts at being trendy are laughable.”

Meg had her own thoughtful insights about the situation over at the Gap: “I think the problem goes beyond Patrick Robinson,” she wrote. “My guess is that if he was given free reign the Gap would have gone a lot more 'cutting edge' or 'trendy', but Gap higher-ups were trying to please two different people: those who want quality basics and those who want cheap and on-trend pieces. Gap ultimately failed to do both.”

We’ll see if this latest design-team shakeup can turn the brand around. No word as of yet about who will be replacing Robinson at the Gap. While the Gap searches for a new hire, the head of children’s design will oversee adult clothing. 


Giovanna Battaglia at an art exhibition opening in New York CityThe Scarf Debate: Love It Or Lose It?

Stylist Giovanna Battaglia who has been doing some work for W as of late, is a favorite in the Fashion Spot forums for her unique personal style. She recently moved from Italy to New York to be closer to her boyfriend, Vladimir Restoin Roitfeld (son of Carine Roitfeld, the former Editor-in-chief of Vogue Paris), and as a result, we’re treated a bit more often to glimpses of her personal style. 

Battaglia recently attended artist Nicolas Pol's "Sick Atavus of the New Blood" exhibition opening, which was hosted by her boyfriend, wearing a vintage Thierry Mugler dress with a corset-style bodice that showed off her waist and a considerable amount of sheer patterned fabric that provocatively flashed some skin. The dress was a hit, but the silk scarf she wrapped around her neck received mixed reviews.

Ziegfeld Girl wrote, “I love the addition of the scarf to the black dress. It's very Giovanna!” Lola rose agreed, saying, “I love the scarf and she looks stunning in that dress.”

Fantastical shared her opinion: “I like this look with or without the scarf, but I think what I love most is how subtly daring it is, yet so refined even though the dress is pretty transparent.”

*ana* expressed, “It's a very ladylike way to be daring, I like it,” but she added what in my opinion is a very apt critique of the accessory in question, “Not a fan of the way she wrapped the scarf… Looks like she was trying to cover a neck brace.”

Other pictures, where the scarf has been discarded, reveal that Battaglia in fact had nothing to hide. Unless, in an unlikely twist, she was smuggling in some unknown object that we can only guess at. I’m going to quit while I’m ahead with the conspiracy theories… sometimes a scarf is just a scarf, and it either looks good or it doesn’t.


Vogue cover image courtesy of the Fashion Spot forums; Patrick Robinson image: Jeff Grossman/; Giovanna Battaglia image: zimbio