The Précis

The Précis – 17th February 2018

It’s a busy time in fashion right now. Fashion month is in full swing and we are now across the pond in London for the shows. Honestly, I’m still catching up on New York. I’m going to have a post rounding up my favorite styles from the city next week sometime (most likely on Wednesday) so stay tuned for that. In the meantime, here is your regular weekly column of some of the most interesting stories from the week.

“Cushnie Et Ochs Designers Split Ways After 10 Years in Business Together” – Fashionista

A FW18 Look

Cushnie et Ochs is always one of my favorite shows of New York Fashion Week, which just ended on Thursday. NYFW was a long, drawn-out affair this season and it was filled with news. The splitting of Cushnie et Ochs was some of the most interesting to me. The brand, started by Michelle Ochs and Carly Cushnie, upon graduation from Parsons 10 years ago, filled that gap in the market for sexy evening-wear that you could probably wear during the day if you were boss enough. Season upon season they managed to make fluid silky dresses that hugged every curve of the body in colors that would just pop on every skin tone. The news that the duo are going their separate ways came as a bit of a surprise to me as I had heard no rumors of an impending departure from Michelle Ochs. The future of the brand remains clear – Carly Cushnie is staying and it will be business as usual. I am curious to see if the aesthetic of the brand remains the same with just a singular vision and also what Michelle Ochs does next.

“Vogue Criticized for Unpaid Internships” – The Guardian

Edward Enninful’s tenure at British Vogue has not been without its missteps. The reaction to his appointment, which was supposed to herald in a new age at British Vogue filled with opportunity and equality, was overwhelmingly positive but that reception seems to have soured slightly. The latest news to break is that British Vogue is offering month-long unpaid internships, called shadowing. They argue that the internships are still legal because the employee is not bound to show up to work daily and that they are not actually doing a job but are observing someone else doing theirs. It sounds like a PR spin on an unfair reality. Unfortunately, the #NewVogue isn’t very different than its previous iteration.

The Précis: 10th February 2018

It has been a busy couple of weeks for me. I went back to school to work on completing my Bachelor’s degree, it was my birthday, and I’ve been preparing to travel. It has also been a busy few weeks for the newscycle. Whilst it seemed like January was never going to end, I have a feeling that February will fly by given the sheer amount of things on the agenda for me. I’m happy about that because I am desperate to feel some warmth when I step out of the door. I am so over the winter.

“To Our Daughter” – Kylie Jenner

Kylie’s pregnancy reveal video was heartwarming and genuinely sweet. Her excitement and enthusiasm about this new chapter in her life is so beautiful, and I am impressed by the loyalty and the commitment of her friend group to keep her secret and not leak any images to TMZ. I think we all knew that Kylie was expecting and I’m sure she feels so lucky to have been able to have this experience in private.

“Skincare is good and also works” – Racked

At the end of January there was an article published which made waves on the internet. It basically said that skincare is a con and we are all wasting our money on fancy products that we do not need. As a skincare enthusiast, I was a little bit taken aback by the article. Yes, I know that we probably don’t need a 10 step routine like encouraged by a lot of K-Beauty enthusiasts, but taking care of your skin is nothing to scoff at. Fortunately, Racked has come back with a rebuttal and a good one at that. If you are a fan of taking care of your skin and having a little “me” time, try reading Cheryl Wischhover’s response. It will reaffirm your confidence in your routine. Also, even if it is all a con, if you enjoy it why stop?

The Précis: 3rd February 2018

Fenty Beauty on track to outsell Kylie Cosmetics” – The Cut

Every pop culture outlet has covered this story in great depth, but is it just for clicks? In my opinion, yes. Kylie Cosmetics, a direct to consumer brand, which has been a phenomenal success in its two years of operations just happens to be founded by a celebrity, Kylie Jenner; Fenty Beauty, Rihanna’s brand in partnership with Kendo, the distribution company behind Kat Von D’s eponymous line, is sold wholesale to Sephora and outlets across the globe like Harvey Nichols in the UK. Why is it that these two brands with an entirely different business model and varying product lines are being compared? Because the two founders generate clicks. I have bought products from both of the brands and have found them all to be good quality. People love to drag Kylie Jenner because of who she is but really her brand is good, regardless of the pricing or sales. Fenty Beauty is also a great brand with fantastic packaging and an almost infinite shade range. It’s time to start thinking of them separately and if you want to make comparisons do it with like brands – don’t compare apples with oranges. A Fenty Beauty comparison could be to Kat Von D or even a line like Tarte or Anastasia Beverly Hills; A Kylie Cosmetics comparison could only really be Colorpop or Glossier.

CR Fashion Book – Issue 12

The Précis: 27th January 2018

“Hedi Slimane is the new Creative Director of Céline” – Fashionista

Much ado has been made regarding Hedi Slimane’s appointment at Céline. The announcement was made last weekend. I woke up to various news blasts on my email and was immediately excited by the news. You see, I am one of the people that actually really loves what Slimane did at Saint Laurent (although I do still wish he didn’t rename the brand). I thought his designs were cohesive and so effortlessly cool. Both his girl and guy were people I’d either want to be or be with. His appointment at Céline is a rather strange one though, I will admit that. His aesthetic is not at all in line with the feeling that Phoebe Philo has worked hard for a decade to create. People have taken great offence to this, plus the fact that Céline is a very minimalist, also feminist brand. Women are not sexualized when wearing Céline and a lot of people are worried that the direction will change completely and that they will lose what was once so special about it. I am excited to see what Slimane will do and if his personal aesthetic will be as strong as it was on Saint Laurent and the brand’s direction. You have to remember that Slimane totally transformed the finances of Saint Laurent and was a very welcome addition at Kering; LVMH probably hopes that he will do the same thing at Céline. They are adding menswear, couture, and fragrance, plus opening an office in Los Angeles (where Slimane is based). His first show will be in September at Paris Fashion Week.

“All Good Magazines Go To Heaven” – The New York Times

Keeping an archive of fashion magazines is something that every fashion lover does. Whether yours dates back just a few years or even a few decades, having the physical copies of the magazines that you once read and thought nothing of proves so valuable in years going forward. You can see the change in style in all areas – the actual apparel and accessories, typography, prose, graphic design, and layout – plus marvel at the advertising which actually makes up the bulk of the book. For most people, their magazine habit often gets a little too much and they end up disposing of them without even thinking about the long term value, monetary or otherwise. This article discusses someone who has kept them all, and has an archive going back for decades spanning various categories of publications. Talk about life goals…

The Précis: 20th January 2018

The new year is in full swing and the fashion industry is back to its rapid pace with plenty of newsworthy details being leaked every week. From collaborations to conversations to accusations, there is plenty of news to dissect. Unfortunately, the climate of sexual assault allegations which heated up last fall continued into 2018 with new reports coming out weekly. The fashion industry had remained mum on the subject for a little while but with the latest round of rumors, it is impossible to turn a blind eye any longer.

“Male models say Mario Testino and Bruce Weber sexually assaulted them” – The New York Times
The Bruce Weber allegations came out last year. He was “cancelled” for a lot of people who read the stories shared by the young male models who had been subject to his behavior. The New York Times article published last week just further solidified the claims. A new name, Mario Testino, was added into the mix. It’s sad to hear this because these men are two of fashion’s most prominent photographers who have shot everybody from models to the royal family, yet they have been behaving in an immoral way for decades and got away with it up until now. I feel like it has taken so long for the stories to break about these two photographers because of their friends in high places (literally every fashion magazine has worked with the pair at some stage) and the fact that they don’t look like your typical creep. Terry Richardson was almost too easy to bring down due to the fact that he looked like a sleazebag so it was easier for the allegations to stick. With Testino and Weber, some of fashion’s big names can’t seem to give up on them. In response to the New York Times exposé, Condé Nast revealed new guidelines for conduct on photoshoots (models will never be left alone with photographers, makeup artists etc.) and announced that they were not planning to work with either photographer for the foreseeable future.

“Alexander Wang to drop out of NYFW and follow pre-collection schedule” Fashionista

It seems as though New York Fashion Week will soon be no more. Each season, another brand drops out to either show in another city or show at a different time. In the previous few years, New York has suffered some high profile losses like Proenza Schouler and Altuzarra. Now, the unthinkable has happened: Alexander Wang is changing schedule and skipping fashion week, starting after February. In a new move, it was announced that Alexander Wang will be showing in June and December instead of February and September. Yes, it’s only one brand but the knock-on effects will likely be tremendous. In five years time, I predict fashion will be operating on an entirely different schedule than it currently does. The see-now, buy-now trend sparked the change and this move has only further solidified the fact that the traditional calendar is just not working anymore. Brands are revolting and refusing to stick to it, and now retailers are going to be left with no other option other than keep up with the changes.

The Précis: 13th January 2018

New year, new title! As I mentioned in last Saturday’s post, my blog is in a slightly transitional phase and the renaming of the weekly words series is just one of the many changes that I am making: enter, the précis. Précis, meaning summary or synopsis, is the new name of my weekly series as I figured it was really a roundup of some of the newsworthy stories of the week and précis sounds a little more elegant. I hope you enjoy the new name.

Victoria’s Secret Sales Declined Every Single Month Last Year –

In an unsurprising announcement, L Brands, the parent company of Victoria’s Secret reported declining sales of 5% to 14% each month compared to 2016. It may seem that Victoria’s Secret is the go-to stop for lingerie but much of their hype comes from their annual fashion show, which was largely considered disastrous last year, and from their models’, angels’, own social media followings. The online attention doesn’t always translate into sales and the newly released figures proves this. VS changed their product offerings a couple of years ago, cutting the hugely popular swimwear division and focusing on activewear instead. The move away from swim was met with much disappointment from consumers and VS’ sales have been declining since.

Personally, I can’t imagine things getting any better for Victoria’s Secret unless they vastly change their products. Their brand of sexy is just not cool anymore. As a company that is trying to capture the wallets of young girls (as young as tweens, with the PINK division), they are out of touch with what young girls want. Young people do not wear lingerie and padded bras anymore; they wear bralets, which VS does sell but at higher prices than competitors in that area. The women of the age who would be interested in buying the kind of underwear sold by Victoria’s Secret is often sized out of the store due to the miniscule size range normally available in stores – if you have very small or very large boobs, try somewhere else – plus the fact that the underwear only goes up to size XL and definitely runs small (according to their size chart an XL is a US 16, average women’s size is 16-18 across the country). It will be interesting to monitor VS’ performance over the course of 2018 to see if they make any noticeable changes to their branding or how they market their products as I also feel like this could change their fate long term.

The Weeknd Cuts Ties With H&M Over ‘Deeply Offensive’ Photo – Rolling Stone

from The Weeknd’s official Twitter account

If you didn’t already hear about it, H&M posted a product on their site that received hefty (and deserved) criticism online. The product in question was a kids hoodie with “coolest monkey in the jungle” printed on it. The hoodie in question was worn by a black child, prompting outcries of racism. I struggle to understand how this product got through so many stages of development without anybody flagging it as a potential issue. It takes many people to make a product live on a website and I can’t believe that nobody raised this as an issue. The Weeknd has a clothing collaboration with the fast-fashion retailer but after seeing the news online, he announced that he would not be working with the store any longer. G-Eazy, who has a similar deal, said the same thing. Pressure has been building for Nicki Minaj to make a similar statement, but as of now she has remained quiet.

I was glad to see people quickly condemning H&M over this product and it was nice to see celebrities putting their money where their mouth is and actually pull out of partnerships that no longer align with their values. It means forfeiting a paycheck for them, but in the long run what even is that to people who are making multi-millions annually? People have called for a boycott of the Swedish retailer but that will likely not happen. People tend to be all talk and no action when it comes to things like that. H&M released a statement earlier this week apologizing for their actions. I just really don’t understand how things like this continue to happen: it’s 2018.

Weekly Words: 30th December 2017

The week between Christmas and New Year is always a slow one, like drifting down a lazy river. It is a time to relax, unwind, and reflect on the past year. I have spent a lot of time doing that, and also thinking about what I want in the year ahead. Every year people make resolutions to lose weight, work out, and be entirely different people than they currently are. I don’t think that’s a good approach. Instead make manageable and achievable goals that you won’t beat yourself up over if you don’t achieve. I’m making more of a bucket list of things I want to do, places I want to visit, and things I want to buy – I might do a post on this at some point.

As a result of the week-long holiday taken by nearly everybody in fashion, the news cycle has been rather slow so I’m adding something from last week which I forgot to mention: the departure of Phoebe Philo from Céline. I’m hoping that the designers who have all left houses (such as Philo and, my favorite, Riccardo Tisci) find a new brand to call home in 2018.

Phoebe Philo Is Exiting Céline” – Fashionista

In a surprising twist, Phoebe Philo has stepped down from her position at Céline. Rumors of her impending departure began swirling back in 2015 when Vanessa Friedman of The New York Times mentioned them in an article about Alber Elbaz being fired from Lanvin. However, in fashion’s game of musical chairs it began to appear that Philo was staying put. Alas, on December 22nd it was confirmed that she was leaving the brand after the Fall 2018 show in March. Philo is best known for her minimalist style which is oft-copied by other luxury brands and fast-fashion stores alike. Her contribution to fashion is huge and the loss surrounding her departure will definitely be felt in the coming seasons.

Weekly Words: 23rd December 2017

Khloe Kardashian’s Pregnancy 

My greatest dream realized! We are having a baby! I had been waiting and wondering but God had a plan all along. He knew what He was doing. I simply had to trust in Him and be patient. I still at times can't believe that our love created life! Tristan, thank you for loving me the way that you do! Thank you for treating me like a Queen! Thank you for making me feel beautiful at all stages! Tristan, most of all, Thank you for making me a MOMMY!!! You have made this experience even more magical than I could have envisioned! I will never forget how wonderful you've been to me during this time! Thank you for making me so happy my love! Thank you to everyone for the love and positive vibes! I know we've been keeping this quiet but we wanted to enjoy this between our family and close friends as long as we could privately. To enjoy our first precious moments just us ❤️ Thank you all for understanding. I am so thankful, excited, nervous, eager, overjoyed and scared all in one! But it's the best bundle of feelings I've ever felt in my life! ❤️❤️❤️

A post shared by Khloé (@khloekardashian) on

After months of speculation, Khloe Kardashian has finally confirmed that she is pregnant with her first baby. In sharing the happy news, she has reignited the debate over whether her younger sister Kylie Jenner is pregnant or not. Fans have thought that neither of the sisters were pregnant and that Kris Jenner was just leading everyone on a wild goose chase. Khloe’s confirmation now has us all waiting for Kylie’s. Here’s to hoping it comes by Christmas!

“Would You Take Out a Loan for a Pair of Jeans?” – Racked

graphic from Racked article

Payday loans are a major financial problem for millions of people. Debt is scary. Money management is not the easiest thing in the world. Why is it, then, that Affirm loans exist and are used to purchase the most trivial things such as a pair of jeans? This Racked article explores the topic, detailing the use of Affirm loans (which have an APR of 10-30%) for smaller purchases like clothing and plane tickets. It allows the customer to pay for the product in whole straight away using a loan, and then pay back the loan in installments over a set period of time. The article is really interesting and helps you understand the reasoning that people may use when they opt to try this service, but, as with any information from a financial provider, take it all with a grain of salt. Is it really worth potentially ruining your credit score for a pair of jeans / making a $200 pair of jeans cost way more after you’ve actually paid them off? Please read this article because Racked have produced an amazing piece that really opens your eyes!!


Weekly Words: 16th December 2017

Versace SS18 Campaign

Shot by Steven Meisel and starring many of the original supermodels from Gianni Versace’s iconic shows, Versace’s SS18 campaign is nostalgic and superb. The entire collection was a tribute to Gianni Versace, comprised of archivally-inspired pieces and prints. The campaign continues with the same theme and provides us with a much welcomed injection of glamour and fun in this dreary world.

“Salma Hayek: Harvey Weinstein is my monster too” – The New York Times

In the scandal that never seems to settle, Salma Hayek has come forward with her own story about Harvey Weinstein from the time of when she was developing and shooting the movie Frida, based on the life story of Frida Kahlo. Her story, penned as a personal essay, detailed the incidents which took place in great detail and shows a lot of emotion. She spoke of an incident during the filming, which quickly descended into a hellish experience, where he pressured her into doing a lesbian sex scene with co-star Ashley Judd, aka the actress who first came forward with her story. It seems that no woman in Hollywood was exempt from his behavior. The day after the story broke, Weinstein’s publicists came out with a statement to deny the claims. Really Weinstein, why even bother?

Weekly Words: 9th December 2017

This week has been a hectic, crazy week for me. I have barely stopped thus far with lots of travel and appointments filling up my days. I’m not in New York at the moment and it is really strange removing yourself from that bubble. It is very easy to get stuck in the mindset that New York is the center of the universe when you live there, because it really is its own self-contained world. Everything you could ever need is there. However, the world did not stop turning just because I left the city and once again it is another week filled with news and happenings. Here’s some of the most important fashion news, in my opinion:

Kim Kardashian copies Vetements

Instead of finding this online, I stumbled across this myself and I was actually very disappointed. When Kim and North wore the matching silver Vetements dresses to one of Kanye West’s Saint Pablo tour shows back in September 2016, the whole internet’s collective hearts melted. They looked so cute. It was twinning at its best. Fast forward to 2017 and Kim Kardashian and Kanye West launched their own kids clothing line, called The Kids Supply. The line appears to be pretty successful, operating on a drop system comparable to a sneaker release and providing kids with miniature versions of their parents’ clothes. They even sell baby Yeezys. For the Holiday 2017 collection, Kim & Kanye included a silver dress which is a direct knock-off of the Vetements style that was custom made for North last fall. It’s disappointing to see them try to profit off of one of their friend’s (or at least acquaintance’s) designs, especially when the design in question was a one-of-a-kind piece made for their daughter. I understand taking inspiration from something, but when it looks like a direct replica that is a little bit inappropriate. This isn’t the first time that Kim & Kanye have been called out for copying with this line, with their furry slides last season getting attention for being very similar to the Fenty Puma and Givenchy styles. I noticed this on Monday 4th when Kim posted the line sheets on her Twitter. Since then, countless places have called her out and Kim responded by saying the styles were paying homage and that they would be named after the respective designers with the proceeds donated to charity. Sigh. Ok. I’m glad they are doing something positive but you know for sure that if they weren’t called out for the copying they would’ve kept the profits. The second garment in question is a copy of a Comme des Garçons bomber jacket.

Bruce Weber Sued by Male Model for Sexual Misconduct” – Fashionista

Since the Harvey Weinstein scandal broke a couple of months ago, the entertainment industry’s sexual predators have been exposed at a rapid rate. The latest name to emerge is Bruce Weber, noted fashion photographer famous for his Calvin Klein and Abercrombie + Fitch ads. Weber’s name was first thrown around over a month ago after some of the stories posted by Cameron Russell under the #myjobshouldnotincludeabuse campaign alluded to him. Terry Richardson was the name most known but lots of people had heard rumblings about Weber too. Model Jason Boyce brought a lawsuit against the photographer in New York last week, alleging abuse and humiliation. Sadly, it seems that the news of the accusations weren’t anything new to a lot of people in the fashion industry and it makes you wonder how widespread this cover-up really is and who else is involved.