Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Karl Lagerfeld gets a little nip/tuck from i-D

You've got to hand it to Karl Lagerfeld. At the age of, officially, 73 - or according to baptism records and one relative, 78 - he is a fashion phenomenon who has not only outlasted and outlived many of his contemporaries, he has more energy, drive and ideas than some half his age. The creative king of Chanel and Fendi and master of a myriad collaborations and startups - which currently include Hogan, Macy's, S.T. Dupont and his new upscale Karl Lagerfeld Paris and 'masstige' Karl lines - Lagerfeld is like an indefatigable fashion Terminator. While his creativity might seem unstoppable, however, unlike Arnold Schwarzenegger's cyborg, Lagerfeld the man is made of flesh. But beyond concealing himself behind his trademark sunglasses and neck-high starched collars, Lagerfeld has made some effort in interviews to distance himself from the subject of cosmetic surgery.

Tom Bull covers Wish

In October, frockwriter reported that Tom Bull was rapidly making his mark in the menswear business, scoring campaigns for US brands Perry Ellis, Ralph Lauren and Banana Republic. In the interim, the 22 year-old Perth native has become part of the new Australian male model power posse on the international runway show circuit. At the Milan Fall/Winter 2012/2013 menswear shows in January, not only did Bull walk in Giorgio Armani's show, he also shot his first magazine cover and two fashion editorials inside the new Armani Hotel on Via Manzoni. The client was The Australian's luxury magazine Wish, for the April design and architecture edition, which is out next week. Here is a first look. 

Monday, March 26, 2012

Shaik, rattle and roll

next models
In 2008, 17 year-old Shanina Shaik was named the runnerup of Seven Network’s unsurprisingly short-lived reality show, Make Me A Supermodel. By February 2009, she had moved to New York, popped up in a handful of shows at New York Fashion Week and started dating US model and reality tv star Tyson Beckford, the co-host of the American version of Make Me A Supermodel (who is currently shooting Britain & Ireland's Next Top Model with Elle Macpherson). The pair had originally met during the filming of the Australian show, on which Beckford played model mentor. Although a contract with New York Model Management was part of Shaik’s prizes, not much was heard from her until November 9 2011, when she appeared in the Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show in New York, alongside some major modelling names, including compatriot Miranda Kerr. 

Friday, March 23, 2012

Katerina Chang is the bomb

Frockwriter first noticed Katerina Chang at the David Jones show in Sydney last month. As it emerges, it is no surprise that we haven't seen that much of her. Living in Australia for four years, initially studying a marketing degree at the University of Western Sydney, this 21 year-old Taiwanese beauty with Marlene Dietrich cheekbones first walked into the Sydney offices of Chadwick Models in July last year. She has been quietly building a body of work.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Mini Andén and Brad Fisher for Trenery Autumn/Winter 2012

In terms of models-turned-actors, Sweden’s Mini Andén has managed to parlay her profile into quite the Hollywood mini career. Andén’s IMDB page boasts 22 listings, a mix of bit parts in films such as Ocean’s Twelve and Tropic Thunder (she played secretary to Tom Cruise's genius grossout agent Les Grossman) and roles in tv series such as My Boys, Nip/Tuck, CSI: Miami, Bones, Entourage and Monk. At 33, the erstwhile advertising face of Armani, Gucci, Louis Vuitton and Hermès, among others, is still hard at work modelling – last month she added Harpers Bazaar Turkey to her 40+ swag of magazine covers. Get ready to see more of Andén down under as the Autumn/Winter 2012 face of Australian high street brand Trenery, cast opposite American artist and model Brad Fisher. Shot recently in London by British fashion photographer Paul Wetherell, a favourite of i-D, Dazed & Confused and 10 Magazine, the campaign bows on April 1st. Here is a first look. 

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

The butterfly effect: Why couldn't Toni Maticevski take over the reins at Christian Dior?

Frockwriter popped down to Melbourne last week for the last leg of the L’Oréal Melbourne Fashion Festival (as a guest of the organisers, once again). Among the shows we caught was Toni Maticevski’s 'Red Carpet Runway' on Thursday night, which closed the event with 50 looks from Maticevski’s archive of 2000 pieces, collected since he launched his demi-couture label in 1999. There were plenty of his signature, heavily-embellished ballgowns and shorter, artfully-deconstructed tailored pieces that have made their way to New York Fashion Week, The Grammys, the Cannes Film Festival and a raft of other events on the backs of celebrities such as Beyoncé, Scarlett Johannson, Leighton Meester, Christina Ricci, Abbie Cornish, Gemma Ward and Kim Kardashian. At 35, Maticevksi is exactly the same age as was John Galliano in 1996, when the latter was appointed as the creative director of the storied Parisian haute couture house of Christian Dior. With Galliano fired last year, there is a vacant position to fill. Suspend your disbelief for a moment that an Australian designer could ever be considered for the creative director’s role of a major Paris fashion house (Martin Grant FYI once turned down the Céline gig) and ponder the hypothetical question, why couldn’t Maticevski fill Galliano’s shoes?

Thursday, March 15, 2012

UN expert to Rodarte: Hands off Aboriginal culture

rodarte FW1213/getty via daylife
In writing about Rodarte’s Fall 2011 show in February last year and specifically, about the casting of Alice Springs-based model Melissa Johannsen, frockwriter noted, “When the Mulleavy sisters were dreaming up their Fall 2011 collection with the Great American Plains in mind, chances are there weren't any pictures of Australia’s Red Centre on their mood board”. Twelve months on, coincidentally, what inspired Laura and Kate Mulleavy, the designer siblings behind the New York-based label, for their Fall 2012 range? “Australia!” and “the rugged outback”, they told reporters backstage in New York last month, in spite of the fact that neither has ever visited Australia. The inspiration “came out of nowhere”, according to the Mulleavys. No, it did not, says Megan Davis, an indigenous Australian lawyer who is the head of the University of NSW Indigenous Law Centre and an expert member of the United Nations Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues (UNPFII). UPDATED: The Mulleavys claim the prints were licensed, but they still won't reveal the identity of the artist/s (see below). 

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Best in show - the Australian models of Fall/Winter 2012/2013

julia nobis after the miu miu FW1213 show/altamira via ford models
That's a wrap for Fall/Winter 2012/2013 folks. Above is a shot of Julia Nobis taken just after Miu Miu on Wednesday, the final day of Paris Fashion Week. She's looking a little dazed and confused. Considering that by our count, Nobis walked in 73 shows from New York to London, Milan and Paris - besting her record from last season by one show - no surprises there. Nobis led the Australian model pack once again and quite possibly will also emerge as the season's number one catwalker for the second consecutive time. So far, we have counted 34 Australians on the FW1213 runways. There was pretty much an Australian in every major show of the season. At Chanel, there were five: Nobis, Miranda Kerr, Montana Cox, Rose Smith and Caitlin Lomax. They walked in so many shows, they corrupted frockwriter's interface. No joke. After battling data problems for the past two seasons with the increasing size of these showlist posts, we have now had to put the show details of the busiest Australians into drop-down boxes. 

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Abbey Lee Kershaw makes a miraculous recovery from surgery to walk in Kanye West's show

After his mercilessly-slaughtered first collection, the only way was up, frankly, for Kanye West's sophomore show in Paris. The New York Times and The Washington Post, among others, gave yesterday's show much kinder reviews. In other terrific news for West, Abbey Lee Kershaw apparently made such a rapid recovery from last week's knee surgery, she beat a path to his backstage door to walk the show for the second season - at least according to a number of media outlets.

From ANTM to ICU: Alice Burdeu's adventures in Ellison-land

screen grab, 'an ode to the muse'
Becoming the winner of the Australia's Next Top Model series can lead to many things. An international modelling career, if you are lucky - and it looks like the Australian show's winners are having more luck than most at the moment. Over the weekend at Melbourne's Australian Centre For The Moving Image, Cycle 3 winner Alice Burdeu made her screen debut - well, at least her film festival screen debut - at Justin Watson's and Alastair McCann's No Home fashion film festival, as part of the cultural calendar of the L'Oréal Melbourne Fashion Festival, which officially kicks off tomorrow. Burdeu is the star of a short film called 'An Ode to the Muse', that was shot by Melbourne's Tooth & Claw collective for Sydney fashion label Ellison. For anyone who didn't catch No Home, here is a first look at the film. It's an intriguing little plotline.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Cox plate

montana cox at chanel FW1213/getty via daylife

"Everyone you've worked with said you were ready to take on the fashion world" Australia's Next Top Model host Sarah O'Hare told Montana Cox on live television last October, after announcing the 18 year-old Melburnite as the winner of the 2011 series. Just five months later, it seems O'Hare and co may have had a point. Over the past fortnight Cox has scored some of most coveted runway jobs in the business, just adding top Paris shows Lanvin, Christian Dior, Kenzo, Mugler, Cacharel, Andrew Gn and Vanessa Bruno to a Fall/Winter 2012/2013 showlist that already included Italian luxury names Bottega Veneta, Pucci and Etro. Cox leaves Paris today after adding just one more name to that list. It's a big one (UPDATE: Chanel, see above, where Cox walked alongside compatriots Miranda Kerr, Julia Nobis, Caitlin Lomax and Rosemary Smith). Then it's straight to Charles de Gaulle airport for a flight to Melbourne, to star in Thursday night's David Jones parade which will open the L'Oréal Melbourne Fashion Festival (her only LMFF gig). Stand by to see if Cox scores an equally coveted spot on any of the Top 10 Newcomer lists that are published by various outlets at the end of the season. But just how unusual is her 'overnight success' against the broader backdrop of Tyra Banks' Top Model franchise, which was launched in the US in 2003 and is now produced independently in some 50 countries? And with Cox as its latest star, just how successful is the Australian version of the show?   

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Australia SS1213: The Survivor edition

how to make gifs

So Australian Fashion Week is back in its third incarnation from April 30th to May 4th. Founded in 1996 as Mercedes Australian Fashion Week, Rosemount became the naming rights sponsor in 2007 and now, five years later, Mercedes-Benz is back on deck, to the reported tune of AUD 1million. The new official title is Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Australia. For the past four years we have pulled together a preview schedule ahead of organiser IMG Fashion Asia Pacific's official schedule release. So here we go again. Why so soon? Because earlier this week IMG went out with a press release - unusually, some nine weeks ahead of the event - to announce which designers are on board so far this season. Could the timing of this release have anything to do with next week's L'Oréal Melbourne Fashion Festival? We have a hunch it might. UPDATE 07/04: FINAL CONFIRMED SCHEDULE BELOW, VIA MBFWA. UPDATE 16/04: BOTH DION LEE AND JOSH GOOT HAVE NOW CANCELLED THEIR MBFWA SHOWS. 

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