Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Andrej Pejic is considering a lead role in a French feature film

damon baker via

Abbey Lee Kershaw isn’t the only Australian ├╝berblonde who may be considering a move into movie territory. Frockwriter always thought that the perfect film role for Andrej Pejic might be Pygar the angel in a remake of Roger Vadim’s 1968 sci fi classic Barbarella. While the latest Barbarella remake attempt may be stuck in development hiatus, we were very interested to hear that Pejic is currently seriously considering an offer in another film project. Also with a French director as it happens.

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Abbey Lee Kershaw has a dicky knee, may be working with Spielberg


Australian supermodel Abbey Lee Kershaw has been conspicuous by her absence on the Fall/Winter 2012/2013 runway circuit, turning up in just two shows in New York - Alexander Wang and Anna Sui - and prompting all sorts of wild rumours. Sure, at Kershaw's level (she is ranked the world #5 by a model might not feel the need to run herself ragged on every runway, choosing instead to appear in a select few shows, possibly on an exclusive basis. Considering that Kershaw is a current advertising face of Gucci, however, many were surprised to see her miss that specific Milanese show last Wednesday. But frockwriter can reveal that she has at least one pretty good excuse for keeping a low profile. 

Australia's next top models

montana cox at bottega veneta FW1213 getty via

So how is modelling's so-called 'Aussie invasion' going? The Fall/Winter 2012/2013 Paris shows kick off today and so far, by our count, 31 Australians have turned up on the runways of New York, London and Milan, with one notable newcomer making her mark in the latter city. That is, Australia's Next Top Model Cycle 7 winner Montana Cox (above). Fresh off the ANTM 2011 winner's podium, Cox has yet to even make an appearance at Australian Fashion Week. In her first ever runway season, however, she has already bagged five shows, including some of the most prestigious Italian luxury names: Bottega Veneta, Pucci and Etro. Frockwriter hears that the casting directors of some of the bigger Paris brands may be equally interested. ANTM Cycle 6 winner Amanda Ware was also in Milan, ditto the 2010 winner of the Girlfriend Model Search, Jemma Baines. Julia Nobis meanwhile - who of course never emerged from any modelling competitions - is up to 48 shows already this month. Will she close the Paris shows next week as the season's top catwalker for the second consecutive season? Updated lists below and a photo gallery of the showgirls of London and Milan. The NY shows are in black type; London, blue; and Milan, red.  

Friday, February 24, 2012

Introducing Frockwriter+

how to make gif

Do or do not, there is no try, right? It’s been three years and seven months since frockwriter first saw the light of day. You never know when you start these things just where you will wind up. But here we are with 65,000 unique visitors and 100,000+ page views this month. Links to our stories on a plethora of blogs and mainstream news sites. And notably, beyond the growing number of visitors – many of whom are first-timers who arrive via much bigger sites – a dedicated core of readers who keep coming back to the blog time and time and time again. Some visit, incredulously, over 200 times a month. Traffic, links and consumer engagement are wonderful validation for any blogger. But you can’t pay your rent with them. Eighteen months ago, I introduced advertising. This has helped, but it's a Catch 22 situation: I can’t devote more time to the blog without compromising my ability to earn a living. And unless I spend more time blogging, traffic will never reach a sufficiently critical mass whereby advertising fully supports the blog. So I am trying something new: I am introducing a subscription service in the hope that those who do really value frockwriter’s content and are disappointed that there’s not more of it will be interested in supporting it. I’m calling it frockwriter+. I appreciate this a controversial move. In terms of the fashion blogosphere, as far as I am aware, it’s a fairly radical concept. Before you strike frockwriter off your favourites list in disgust, I’d just like to provide a little background.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

They love a sunburnt country

melissa johannsen backstage at rodarte FW1213, via TFS

Fashion really is having a love affair with all things Australian at the moment (and for anyone not familiar with the line in this post's title, it's borrowed from the iconic Australian poem My Country by Dorothea MacKellar). Sydney's urban beach culture was the inspiration for Michael Kors' Resort 2012 collection and in New York last week, Jeremy Scott looked to have deployed an army of Ms Fitz clones to model his Fall/Winter 2012/2013 collection. Scott said the collection was "inspired by the computer and the way information is disseminated today" and his show styling and even invitation certainly bore a striking resemblance to the work of the New York-based, Sydney expat artist, stylist and blogger. The Mulleavy sisters, meanwhile, themed their Fall/Winter 2012/2103 Rodarte collection around the "rugged Australian outback". Their cast included two Australians, Codie Young and Melissa 'MJ' Johannsen (above). Johannsen, who turned 17 yesterday, is of course more than a little au fait with Australia's Red Centre, hailing as she does from Alice Springs. Young and Johannsen were among at least 28 Australians to walk the New York Fashion Week runways last week. Below are their New York Fall/Winter 2012/2013 showlists.

Friday, February 17, 2012

Once upon a time in David Jones

the great restaurant at david jones, 1938
With apologies to Miranda Kerr, the terrific cast and some great Australian designer offerings at David Jones' Autumn/Winter 2012 showcase on Wednesday, in frockwriter's opinion the real star of the evening was DJs' just-restored On Seven space. This was no mere refurb, but essentially the fruit of retail archaeology - not to mention a multimillion dollar budget that must have made the David Jones board hyperventilate when it was first proposed mid 2011, shortly after ceo Paul Zahra issued a shock profit downgrade. Originally launched in 1928 as The Great Restaurant, the space was shuttered in 1965 and eventually cut in half with a floating ceiling in 1981, to make room for an international designer brand floor. The remaining void became home to over 200 different utility cables and a lot of dust. The space has been hidden from public view for the best part of 50 years.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Close encounters of the KL kind

rose smith backstage at carl kapp's SS1112 show, sydney, may 2011
Publicists would disagree, but any journalist worth their salt will tell you the best stories never come straight off a press release. Occasionally that’s where they start, however. And so it was at 2.44pm on January 16th, when I received an email from Sydney-based fashion PR firm Little Hero headed “Malaysia’s First Lady covets Carl Kapp”, alerting me to what they were claiming would in anybody’s terms constitute an unusually large single, personal order of a designer brand - 61 items. Many designers wouldn't have 61 pieces in a single collection. The alleged client was Rosmah Mansor, the wife of Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak. I called Little Hero back within minutes. The story had been passed over by the fashion editors of two Australian newspapers, said Little Hero staffer Holly Beer, who immediately followed up with a second email, with yet more tantalising details. The second of two appointments had taken place in the PM’s hotel on New Year's Eve – as it emerged, The Star Sydney Casino’s new venue The Darling, the penthouse no less – with the PM himself present. After taking Rosmah's measurements and near six figure order, Kapp was due to be flown by the client to KL for a second round of fittings, said Beer. "It was unbelievably surreal" Kapp told me later that day. Indeed. No mention was made of Kapp being dispatched to KL in a Learjet but by this stage nothing would have surprised me. UPDATE 02/02/12: PM Najib has now gone on the record on Twitter about the Carl Kapp story. In response to a question about frockwriter's post, he described it as: "a wildly exaggerated story deliberately fabricated to affect people's perception of their leaders". UPDATE 06/05/13: As we mentioned in a recent interview with the ABC's Radio National, according to sources close to Kapp, he was paid upfront for the order - in cash.  

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