New York has long been recognised as the place offering wearable, practical designs and Elizabeth & James continue to prove that that's not necessarily a bad thing. One of the greatest thing about the line is that if you're a fan, you're pretty much guaranteed to be in love with each and everyone one of the collections featuring those all-important updated wardrobe-ready pieces that none of us can live without.
So with that in mind, it was business as usual at their fall 2012 presentation. Mary-Kate and Ashley offered up just what their customers want. The trusted parka came in a new dark shade rather than the usual khaki colour we've become accustomed to. Following on from the current penchant for comfort, they also offered a great pyjama suit alongside their signature tuxedo with cropped ankle grazing trousers and the perfect khaki jacket with a quilted overlay.
Stylemint, the site launched a year ago by Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen, is doing really well. In the past year the subscription-based online shop of t-shirts has gone from strength to strength, attracting everyone from Brad Goreski to Joe Zee to come on board as guest stylists. Their most recent collaborator, though, is mega stylist Estee Stanley.
Anyone that's followed Stanley's career will know that, as far as celebrity stylists go, she's up their with the best of them. Most recently she's styled everyone from Penelope Cruz to Lea Michele as well as Ashley Olsen herself, making her the perfect choice for them to collaborate with.
In the short video, Estee explains how she started styling, what she thinks of the design duo and styles two looks using pieces from the site's July offerings.
With all the success of The Row and Elizabeth & James, it's easy to forget that Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen also have a t-shirt collection, Style Mint. Until recently the pieces have only been available in the US but thanks to Stylist Pick, that's all changing because the S/S12 collection is now available to buy in the UK via the Stylist Pick website.
Just in case you're unfamiliar with it, StyleMint was launched last year by the design duo and the premise is simple. Just like Stylist Pick, after completing short questionnaire their team of stylists select a range of pieces from the latest collection that match your preferences. What's even better is the fact that unlike their other lines, prices for the t-shirts start at £15.
Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen may still be on a high after winning big at the CFDA Awards recently but this week they were back to work, presenting the resort 2013 collection of their other line, Elizabeth & James.
As I write this raindrops are gathering along my office windowsill and the tree outside is threatening to come thundering through the window, so yes, basically the weather isn't very good but if it was, this is exactly what I want to be wearing. As has become the norm, the collection played with masculine tailoring but in a feminine way, especially on the lightweight and blouses teamed with tailored trousers and Oxford and on the perfect deconstructed white tuxedo.
Aside from my trusty Converse, trainers aren't something I wear but Superga has swayed me. The Italian sneaker company is doing really well. First up they brought Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsenon board as creative directors of a special line for The Row, back in January Alexa Chung was announced as the creative director of the main line and last week they opened their first American store in SoHo. Alexa Chung was out and about recently pushing the S/S12 collection, which is currently available on Shopbop.
When they received the best womenswear brand award for The Row at the CFDA Awards earlier on this week, it felt hard to remember Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen's Disney days. While the brand has long been a go-to for editors and celebrities, the award cemented their position as being at the helm of a legitimate brand that deserves to be taken seriously. As CFDA president Steven Kolbtold Fashionista, 'They were patient and did it right.' This has served them well both with their own lines and partnerships.
Last week Superga, the Italian sneaker brand that the pair have a collection with, hosted a party to celebrate the launch of their first American store in SoHo. Steve Madden, who is responsible for the big launch and has worked with the twins for the last five years on their Elizabeth & James shoe line, complimented their attention to detail. 'They're very demanding, they're very tough,' he told Fashionista when asked what it was like to work with them. 'They want what they want and so we worked hard to get that done.' But it's this exacting standard that he says is their strength. 'They are a pain in the ass. But they're very good though.'
The CFDA Awards are less than a week away and now the confirmations of those involved are coming in thick and fast. While we already know who some of the awards are going to - Johnny Depp is receiving the style icon award and the media award is going to Garance Dore and Scott Schuman - this years presenters have remained under wraps until now.
According to WWD, Jessica Chastain will present the women's wear award to Marc Jacobs, Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen for The Row or Jack McCollough and Lazaro Hernandez for Proenza Schouler. The menswear award will be presented to either Billy Reid, Simon Spurr or Patrik Ervell by Matt Bomer and Jessica Paré will present for accessories.
On a different note, who else has a feeling that Kim Kardashian will attend this year's event to make a point after Met Gala-gate?
There's been quite a bit of hype surrounding the arrival of Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen's Olsenboye line for JCPenney. Having launched the collection online last week, we had expected pandemonium when the collection - full of checked and striped dresses, blazers and t-shirts - hit the shop floors on Friday. The Cut, however, reported on the scene at the Herald Square store and surprisingly, there was very little excitement enveloping the 20-piece collection.
Perhaps the prices are to blame for the slight boycott of the range, given that the Olsenboye pieces are considerably higher than other pieces in the store. Dresses start at $44, shirts sell for $36 and t-shirts have the going rate of $26 apiece. Alternatively, the lack of the Olsens' faces smiling back at customers from banners, hangers, posters and the like could also be to blame for the collection's failure to generate a buzz. After all, the line does have a distinctly 'young' feel to it, so we would have thought that MK and Ashley, who have mastered the art of marketing through their various other business ventures, would have stuck to their winning formula: pictures of the twins 'selling' the product.