Kanye West's debut collection didn't go down well last season but his fall collection was definitely a step in the right direction. The show was refined - featuring only 20 looks - and centred around black leather on simple silhouettes and it worked. More so than least season, the collection featured pieces that real women would actually want to wear rather than something you would see in a music video, which was the feeling last season.
It was clear that West had learned from his mistakes. While he wasn't happy about the criticisms, you could see that he had sat back and taken them on board and used them to help take his design aesthetic forward. As you would expect, there were sexy pieces like one look that saw the model come down the runway in a skin tight pair of leather trousers and cropped jacket with what looked like a whip, but equally he showed loose fitted sequin tops with simple trousers and great coats that will be more retail friendly. Hopefully this is the start of good things to come.
Alexander Wang isn't the only designer under fire about his ethics as an employer. On Monday Marc Jacobs was criticised again for ignoring CFDA age requirements by allegedly asking a 17 year-old girl to serve as his fit model for long hours in the run up to the brand's recent show. 'If [models] don't want to work w/us, they don't have to', the brand tweeted yesterday, adding fuel to arguments that the CFDA guidelines have not real force.
Hailey Hasbrook, the fit model at the centre of the controversy, took to Tumblr to comment on the issue. 'I loved working and doing looks for Marc Jacobs. It was actually one of the favorite jobs I have had so far. Everyone there were absolutely amazing and awesome to work with,' she wrote. 'It wasn't like I was non-stop trying clothes on for a full 9 hours ... I had many breaks where I could go and lay on the couch, read, or just relax. They took really good care of me there. All I had to do was ask if I needed anything. There was plenty of food and drinks there the entire time. They were all very understanding, flexible, and accommodating.'
Burberry have always been a favourite of mine for their fall collections, especially with their emphasis on great outwerwear and mixed textures, but their S/S12 collection was especially strong.
Tapping into their British heritage, the collection featured exclusive fabrics developed in London and produced in English mills. As we saw Kim Jones do at Louis Vuitton, the brand really separated themselves for the current penchant for fast fashion by involving over 100 tailors in the contructions of each look. With all that said, you can imagine my delight when these images hit my inbox yesterday. The images feature Cara Delevigne alongside Eddie Redmayne sporting the latest collection in their S/S12 campaign shot by Mario Testino.
Alexander Wang has remained largely unscathed over the past few years by bad press but this week came under fire. Like Victoria's Secrets and the Kardashians, he has been accused of running a sweatshop in Chinatown, which has resulted in thirty workers allegedly filing a $50 million lawsuit against him.
According to the Post, the lawsuit includes claims that staff were expected to work in a windowless room for sixteen hour days without overtime. One employee has gone as far as alleging that Wang's brother Dennis threatened to fire him if he took breaks. A spokesperson for the brand quickly quashed the rumours. 'The company takes its obligations to comply with the law very seriously, including the relevant wage and hour regulations, the payment of overtime to eligible employees and having a safe working environment for all of our employees,' they told WWD. 'We will vehemently defend any allegations to the contrary.'
When it comes to British magazines, ELLE UK has always been my favourite. Their features are always spot on (thanks Rebecca Lawthrope and Avril Mair) and their recent covers have been particularly strong. Last year's Michelle Williams and Kirsten Dunst covers were among my favourite of the year and 2012 started off well with covers from both Dakota Fanning and Alexa Chung.
But it doesn't end there. The magazine's April issue sees Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen appear in seperate covers shot by Alexi Hay and as always, the cover makes sense. Aside from regularly being cited as style icons, the pair are amongst the few celebrities that have managed to carve a legitimate fashion career for themselves so as to warrant covering a 'fashion' magazine and besides, like Alexa Chung, they appeal directly to the ELLE girl.
In the cover Mary-Kate appears [above] appears in an embellished coat from Prada, while Ashley sports a hevily embellished Dolce & Gabbana dress.
As soon as Yves Saint Laurent confirmed that they would not renew Stefano Pilati's contract at the house, Hedi Slimane's name was instantly thrown into the hat of designers who could replace him. Last night, the speculation came to an end as YSL's parent company PPR confirmed the reports saying that an announement would be made today. The move marks Slimane's return to the brand after serving as the head of menswear from 1996 to 2000 before taking the helm at Dior Homme until 2007.