Saturday, January 30, 2010

Tiah Eckhardt to replace Lara Stone for Eres?

warwick saint/S magazine via TFS

As in Eres, the high profile French luxury lingerie brand. Well these are the whispers coming out of Paris where, as already mentioned by Eckhardt on her blog, she is currently on assignment for five days - having left three month old daughter Finley Victoria in the care of her mother back home. It’s not so inconceivable – and not just because Eckhardt's rates would be lower than those now commanded by Stone, who has emerged as one of the world's most in demand models over the past twelve months (and is presumably now a little too expensive for some). A fashion model who, her friends say, once dabbled in burlesque in Sydney, Eckhardt has clocked up quite a body, pardon the pun, of nude work since leaving Australia. The publications include no less than French Playboy. And Eckhardt's best-known ad campaign to date just happens to have been for cult British lingerie brand Agent Provocateur. You may recall her role as a French maid in this video for Agent Provocateur's Fall/Winter 07/08 'Lady of The Manor' campaign shot by David Bailey, co-starring Catherine Bailey and Daisy Lowe.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Myf and Tallulah nix fashion for art

Myf Shepherd has been booking some fantastic work of late - an edgy new editorial for Numéro (below) and this February cover for Dazed + Confused Japan, above (adjacent to Tallulah Morton's cover of French magazine Velvet). But frockwriter can reveal that, as she indeed hinted she may do back in September, Shepherd is taking a definite break from the modelling business. Although she may do some direct bookings, we will not be seeing her on any runways this year according to her mother agency Chic Management, while Shepherd remains Australia-based to focus on tertiary studies. University? Ah, no yes. Apparently there aren't enough drama queens in the fashion business for Shepherd, who is planning to study set design, as in theatre set design, at a yet-to-be-disclosed institution [UPDATE: Shepherd reports she will be doing a Bachelor of Design at Sydney's College of Fine Arts).

numéro via the fashion spot

Chic director Kathy Ward told frockwriter:
"She wants to take time out, she wants to have some time back in Australia. A lot of girls take time out. Some might start later, some might start earlier and then take a break. I don't think it's unusual. I think it's great for her".

As chronicled by this blog, it's been a rollercoaster ride for Shepherd since she hit the catwalk running at Rosemount Australian Fashion Week in May 2008. After famously being snubbed by the producers of Australia's Next Top Model, she went on to walk for the world's biggest fashion brands at the Resort 2009 and Spring/Summer 2009 seasons several months later.

After the Spring/Summer 2009 haute couture shows, she then clocked up another 62 shows in the Fall/Winter 0910 season, more than any other Australian model. Her advertising work has included Gucci, Sonia Rykiel, Levi's and DKNY Jeans, with several covers, including Vogue Australia. Here is her CV from It's not bad for a year and a half's work.

But Shepherd did not have a great Spring/Summer 2010 season, surprising many by walking in just a handful of shows at New York Fashion Week last September.

According to Kathy Ward, Shepherd will be returning to modelling in early 2011.

And she's not the only Australian model to be taking some time out.

Tallulah Morton's Australian agent Vikki Graham recently told The Sunday Telegraph's Ros Reines that Morton is taking a break to pursue Fine Arts studies.

According to frockwriter's sources however, Morton has been bandying about the term "quit".

First emerging at Australian Fashion Week in May 2005 at the age of just 13, Morton had a confident debut at New York Fashion Week in September the following year. She was however unable to gain any immediate international momentum, due, it seems, largely to the stringent child work regulations in France (the latter certainly appeared to prevent even rising Polish star Monika Jagaciak from working in Paris until her 16th birthday on January 15th this year).

Morton reemerged at the Paris shows at the age of 16 in March 2008, with a strong debut season, subsequently becoming a favourite of Jean Paul Gaultier and Hermès. Here is her MDC CV.

For the past 18 months however, Morton's off-field antics - as catalogued by Mark 'The Cobrasnake' Hunter - have overshadowed her professional work.

Yes this news will be disappointing to fans of both models. Modelling is, however, a high pressure industry - particularly at the elite level. And at the end of the day, there's more to life than work. Particularly when you've punched more time clocks than your average teenager.

Perhaps if Daul Kim had taken a break from the business, she might still be with us.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Jewel citizenship: Jenny Mercian rocks Victoria's Secret

Here is another of the (numerous) posts that I have not had a chance to put up since going back to fulltime work in October. Given that yesterday was Australia Day here, this one seemed more than appropriate: another Today Tonight story which aired in late November, immediately after the Victoria's Secret Fashion Show was taped in New York. Modelwatchers will obviously be more than familiar with the Australian girls in the VS show, from Miranda Kerr to Abbey Lee Kershaw and this year, Elyse Taylor. Frockwriter has also previously mentioned Sydney expat casting director/show producer Kannon Rajah, who has worked on the show for several years. One name with which you may not be familiar is Jenny Mercian, a Sydney jeweller who has worked on the show for the past five years.

I wrote about Jenny when she first showed up at Australian Fashion Week 2005, on the occasion of her first VS show and elsewhere. So this was a good opportunity to do the tv version (which I produced).

Hit up the player (above) to see the TT story.

Here are also some images from Jenny's more accessible new diffusion line Sahani - and the complete Victoria's Secret Fashion Show, in case you missed it when it aired on December 3.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Galliano saddles up for Christian Dior SS10 haute couture

If you missed the shots coming in overnight, here are some excerpts from Christian Dior's magnificent Spring/Summer 2010 haute couture show in Paris, via UK Telegraph fashion editor, Hilary Alexander. Frockwriter does not have the benefit of the show notes to hand, but the equestrienne and Gibson Girl influences seem fairly self evident. Given that American couturier Charles James was however not born until 1906, Alexander's suggestion that James was active at the "turn of the century" should be taken with a grain of salt. Judging by the two-tone hair, one might assume that contemporary Irish aristo Daphne Guiness may also have been a muse.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Cooper cocks his Revolver

Ah Wayne Cooper. Has there been another Australian designer with a more colourful resumé? Cooper's was the very first runway show of the first Australian Fashion Week back in 1996. In 2000, he was the first of the new Oz fashion guard to show at New York Fashion Week (never to return). One minute he's in voluntary administration, a matter of months later narrowly escaping being bombed in Bali. Next he's convicted of assaulting his wife. Now they're back together. It's a little hard keeping up. Nice to see him back on his feet with a veritable Wayne label stable, that's comprised of Wayne Cooper, Wayne by Wayne Cooper, Wayne mens, Wayne Youth, Wayne Jr and Wayne shoes, bags and sunglasses. Behold a sneak peek at what frockwriter is informed is Cooper's first ever brand campaign. It celebrates his Eighties-nosed Autumn/Winter 2010 collection, 'Revolver' and will feature as POS material in-store. Shot by Georges Antoni, it was styled by Kelvin Harries, with hair and makeup by Natasha Severino and stars Annabella and Broed (from respectively, Chadwicks and Priscillas, surnames TBC).

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Sonny Vandevelde backstage at the FW1011 menswear shows

vivienne westwood FW1011/sonny vandevelde

If you're a regular reader of this blog then you would already be familiar with the name Sonny Vandevelde: the Belgian Australian (aka Belgralian) photographer who has, in frockwriter's humble opinion, transformed backstage fashion photography into an art form. Sonny usually photographs the major womens' runway seasons, but he's on assignment in Paris at the moment completing his first menswear collections, shooting for a variety of publications. Click here to see Sonny's Milan FW1011 menswear slideshow on New York's ubercool Hintmag. And here to see his Paris FW1011 Hintmag gallery, which will be updated to include the latest shows - which wrap up tomorrow. And of course Sonny's blog for others. Frockwriter mentioned Sonny's mini retrospective in New York in September. Come March, he's having a similar show as part of the Melbourne Fashion Festival. Why he hasn't been snapped up by a major retailer or brand for a campaign is beyond me. Of course there was this Old Navy revamp - whose art director in fact used Sonny's shots for the campaign mockup (sighted by me), only to commission another photographer to copy his style. Sucks, but that's life. Ditto getting his heart broken by Lara Stone. But that's another story...

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Oyster redux

Well that was quick. Back in September frockwriter mentioned that Australia’s longest-surviving indie fashion mag Oyster was having a few problems. An exodus of staff had seen the departure of no less than the magazine’s editor in chief, editor, art director, sales director and several other staff members. This was accompanied by the news that the magazine would be going on hiatus for December/January – prompting publisher Monika Nakata to instruct this blog that a Feb/March edition would definitely be going ahead. Well here is some evidence that that may indeed be the case: an early leaked shot of one of this blog’s faves, Cassi van den Dungen. In fact her first fashion editorial according to her Sydney agency Work. It's an excerpt from a 16-page (multigirl) editorial called 'Teddy Girls' by Liz Ham and Jolyon Mason, with makeup by Sasha Nilsson and hair by Sophie Roberts - the latter apparently a fan of Guido Paulo's Coke can hair for Alexander McQueen's FW0910 show. Who pulled the issue together? A fascinating little creative collective that includes the recently-shafted Harpers Bazaaar Australia editor Jamie Huckbody.

Here's the new masthead:

Editor - Monika Nakata
Creative director - Shane Sakkeus
Editor at large – Jamie Huckbody
Associate editor - Alyx Gorman
New York editor – Indigo Clarke
Sub Editor – Seema Duggal

The magazine has apparently been totally redesigned, including the Oyster logo.

Frockwriter wishes the new Oyster team all the best and we look forward to seeing the fruits of their endeavours, which will be out in the second week of February.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Fancy a shag?

gianfranco ferre FW1011/getty via daylife

Beyond fashion's rapidly accelerating digital uptake, with four brands streaming their shows live in the first two days of the men's Fall/Winter 2010/2011 runway season, which is currently underway in Milan, a couple of other trends of note. A definite heritage theme, with several houses that are celebrating anniversaries (Ermenegildo Zegna, 100 years; Dolce e Gabbana, 20) delving into their respective roots. The skinny trouser continues to trend, with a firm nod to the spray-on version - aka megging. At Dolce e Gabbana and Emporio Armani, morphing into longjohns. One garment to emerge in multiple collections is the shaggy man's coat or vest. Part glam rock, part Fred Flintsone, it's fashioned from fur, astrakhan, shearling or wool.

Top to bottom:

1. Gianfranco Ferré/Reuters
2. Gucci/Getty
3. Vivienne Westwood/Getty
4. Pringle of Scotland/Getty
5. Burberry/Reuters
6. Costume National/Getty

Monday, January 18, 2010

The Golden Globes stream live

Live TV by Ustream

That's progress for ya. The Fall/Winter 2010/2011 mens runway season commenced on Saturday in Milan and already on the first day, three brands streamed their shows live to the net: Dolce e Gabbana, Emporio Armani and Burberry. Prada streamed its show overnight. And now for the awards season. Here is the Ustream live stream of the Golden Globes, which are underway as I type in Los Angeles. UPDATE: Click this link to see the actual NBC broadcast.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

The making of Louis Vuitton's Spring/Summer 2010 campaign

And unless I'm mistaken, a quick check of Tokyo Dandy's blog shows that they were among the very first to track down this YouTube of the making of Louis Vuitton's new S/S 2010 campaign starring Lara Stone. So here's this as well.

A chat with Tokyo Dandy

After returning from New Zealand Fashion Week in late September, I had a week to get a stack of work done before starting back at Today Tonight. As a result, a lot of ANZFW material did not go up. Such as this quick video chat with Dan Bailey and Kazuaki Joe K from Tokyo blog Tokyo Dandy (who, like frockwriter, were guests of the organisers). So here it is. Apologies (once again) for the poor sound and light. At the time, we were all waiting for an audience with Pam Anderson and I had to make do with the hotel corridor - and of course my little digital camera.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

My New Year's Eve

This is a little off-brief for frockwriter but FYI, this is how I spent New Year's Eve: hooning the streets of Sydney for about seven hours with a camera crew and two paramedics in a NSW Ambulance Service rapid response vehicle, for a story about the service. It was a fascinating experience. I shot the handycam footage in the opener and a few other spots.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Pressing matters

I mention press pickups here and there on Twitter. And if you scroll to the end of any Blogger blog post, after the comments, you can generally see which blogs have picked up stories (although this feature is not 100% reliable). But I thought I'd start corralling media pickups of frockwriter's stories (and interviews). I'm not going to plaster the blog's white space with them, just include a new "press" button on the RHS, for anyone who is remotely interested, linking back to this page. At time of writing [but since updated], apart from a new Canadian news link to a June, 2009 post about Christopher Kane, top of the list is the deluge of coverage of the Abbey Lee Kershaw/Alexander McQueen shoe post from two weeks ago. This story went all over the world. Including, hilariously, one tv news bulletin in Italy - something I only spotted by fluke after trawling Google News and finding this Sky News player, above, embedded in one Italian newspaper mention.

This doesn't count a plethora of other outlets, blogs and forums that picked the story up, kicking off with Fashionologie and Modelinia. Refinery29, Jezebel and Sydney's Daily Telegraph, among others, took it from there.

You've got to love the viral nature of the net. 

Chic in review, T Magazine, The New York Times, October 15, 2010

Fashion bloggers, Art Nation, ABC, May 2, 2010

Move over Anna Wintour, there's a new fashion queen, The Sydney Morning Herald, April 28, 2010.

Fashion's new front row
, Marie Claire Australia, March 2, 2010

Julia Nobis: Australia's Next Big Thing
,, February 25, 2010

McQueen sales soar, show to go on, BlackBook Magazine, February 16, 2010

Abbey Lee on the pressure to be thin,, February 10, 2010

Christopher Kane: Atom Provocateur, The National Post, Canada, January 8, 2010

Modelky protestují proti velmi vysokým podpatkům, Tyden, Czech Republic, January 1, 2010

Sciopero delle top model, si rifiutano di portare tacchi troppo alti e pericolosi,, Italy, December 29, 2009

Des top-modèles se liguent contre les talons trop hauts, 20 Minutes, France, December 29, 2009

Tacchi troppo alti? Modelle in sciopero, Libero, Italy, December 28, 2009

E le top-model «scioperano» contro i tacchi troppo alti
, Corriere della Sera, December 27, 2009

Models revolt over heel hell, The Independent on Sunday, UK, December 27, 2009

Modeller nektet å gå med disse skoene
, Dagbladet, Norway, December 24, 2009

Models refused to wear THOSE McQueen shows!, Grazia UK, December 22, 2009

Three Models Cut From Alexander McQueen Show After Refusing To Wear Armadillo Shoes, The Huffington Post, US, December 22, 2009

Models Refused to Walk Alexander McQueen’s Spring 2010 Show Because the Shoes Terrified Them, New York Magazine/The Cut, US, December 22, 2009

Q&A - Brave New World, Ragtrader, Australia, originally published in print September 25, 2009

Q&A - Blogger Vision , FTape, UK, September 7, 2009

Has Facebook killed blogging? The Age, Australia, June 25, 2009

The 5 best blogs and websites for Australian Fashion Week, PC World, Australia, April 24, 2009

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Tiah Eckhardt counts her lovers

Frockwriter mentioned that Tiah Eckhardt was awaiting the birth of a baby with partner Patrick Delaney. Well Oz director Alex Goddard just flicked us over this little video he shot for CLUBFEET’s new 'Count Your Lovers' single starring Eckhardt - and apparently just three weeks after the birth of her adorable baby girl Finley Victoria, who arrived in October. Sources say Eckhardt is also to be a face of Berlei, so it looks as if she’s not giving up on modelling at all.

Sunday, January 3, 2010

The counterfeiters

In November, Today Tonight looked at the spate of blatant copies in the Australian mid market footwear sector. Last month, I developed a story about actual luxury brand counterfeits. It went to air on Christmas Eve, the fruit of several weeks shooting, first at Penrith market, including hidden camera footage, and then a police raid at Allambie Heights. We tagged along as police descended on one private house that was filled with counterfeit goods, including designer handbags and, alarmingly, fake prestige brand cosmetics. The figures quoted come from the International Anti Counterfeiting Coalition and also Australian Customs. Luxury counterfeits would definitely appear to be on the rise. According to Customs, the number of seizures was down by two thirds in the 08-09 financial year, but the volume of merchandise seized had doubled on 07-08. Reporter Laura Sparkes voiced the story. Hope to follow it up.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Bonne année

Seasons greetings and a Happy New Year to all frockwriter’s readers. I’m working through summer and have not had much of a chance to blog this very busy past week and a bit. But I just wanted to say thanks once again for your interest and feedback over the past twelve months. I hope that wherever you may be, 2010 brings good things. The fashion countdown is on to the mens Fall/Winter 2010/2011 shows, the Golden Globes, the Spring/Summer 2010 haute couture season and the Fall/Winter 2010/2011 womens RTW marathon, which kicks off in New York on February 11th. The following day, in Vancouver, sees the launch of the winter Olympics, which are sure to produce some eye-popping sport ensembles, at the very least in the ice skating arena. On the graphic design side, frockwriter is already smitten with the event’s mascots. They are:

Miga, a snowboarding sea bear who is part killer whale, part bear; Quatchi, a wannabe hockeyplayer Sasquatch and Sumi, a chimera who is part whale, part Thunderbird, part black bear. Not forgetting Mukmuk, a relatively prosaic marmot.

The mascots were created by Vicki Wong and Michael Murphye of Meomi Design.

Makes you wish (once again) that the Sydney 2000 Olympics powerbrokers had given free rein to a local artist like Jeremy Andrew to produce our mascots, instead of greenlighting Matthew Hatton’s all-too-literal Syd, Ollie and Millie. Who wound up being upstaged by Fatso the Fat-Arsed Wombat anyway.

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