Thursday, January 31, 2008

Event Alert: Lumen's "20 Looks" Fashion Show

Lumen (839 W. Fulton Market) lounge is hosting its Third 20 LOOKS fashion show on Thursday, February 7th from 10-12 p.m. The event, sponsored by Isabella Fine Lingerie, Veuve Cliquot and Marianne Strokirk will feature a runway event showcasing 20 of the hottest lingerie looks from Isabella Fine Lingerie! Complimentary Veuve Cliquot will be flowing and one lucky patron will receive an amazing door prize- a week's worth of bras and panties!

Cover will be $10. RSVP to to reserve a table. 20 LOOKS is guaranteed to be the ultimate event for fashionistas all over Chicago and one event that is not to be missed.
Photo Credits: pictures from Lumen's show with Scoop boutique.

Factio Magazine Launches Winter Print Issue!

Factio Magazine (our big sister print publication) has launched their winter 2008 issue! They focused on fashion and architecture in this issue and the writers did an amazing job at showcasing the similarity between architecture, interior design and fashion! Some of the highlights include an interview with Will Meyer, an architect behind the design of Oscar de la Renta boutiques worldwide and Chicago's Vertu, the architects behind Salon Blonde, Elite Models and Threadless boutique.

Our cover designer Agga B. also uses architecture in her designs! “I am truly inspired by the international architectural style of the 20s. It’s the architecture of clean space and beautifully balanced esthetics without pointless ornamentation,” and that is the basis for how she designs her collections. Jewelry is also inspired by this medium. Frank Gehry, the architect behind the exquisite Jay Pritzker Pavilion in our very own Millennium Park, designed a collection for Tiffany’s. You’ll also find some of the best recent fashion parties in this issue - from the opening of Marc Jacobs, a private party with Prada and the Children’s Ball. Enjoy this issue, we’ve enjoyed constructing it.

If you aren't in Chicago to pick up a copy, visit our online site at

Fashion is

The ebullient crowd at Lumen toasted Chicago’s inaugural fashion website on January 29th. The city sponsored website is designed to put fashion insider information at the fingertips of the many. To kick things off and get the word out, the Mayor’s Fashion Council hosted a launch party at Lumen in the West Loop district.

Despite rapidly dropping temperatures and gusting winds outside, guests turned out in a bevy of chic ensembles. Inside, setting the celebratory mood, heat-sensitive, low lights highlighted the Lumen crowd. Subtle but constant changes in brightness and light-color were propelled by the humming party below.

A flurry of business card exchanges could be seen throughout the evening as guests re-connected with old friends and met new fashion industry players.

Libations included grape-based vodka mixers, and chocolate nibbles were strategically placed about the bar. The site, is a centralized tool designed to help link the city’s fashion community with industry specific information for everyone from designers, to business investors, to consumers. The site also provides a way for industry professionals to connect and discover new opportunities, as well as stay current on events and boutique openings.

“It’s going to really change the way fashion works here in Chicago,” one guest opined.

If the successful launch party was any indication of things to come, we’re certain to see a huge spike in fashion in Chicago. Bring it on!
-Kari Skaflen
photo: Kristen Amato of K. Amato Designs (pictured right)

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Trade News: Ideal Berlin

Berlin's Ideal tradeshow runs from January 31st to February 2nd and is a great place to see a mix of 50 international avante-garde designers. For more information, visit

MAJOR MONDAY AT PIVOT -Chicago's first and only eco boutique

On Monday, February 4th, Pivot (1101 W. Fulton Market), Chicago's first and only eco boutique is having their winter sale and silent auction from 5:30 to 9:00 p.m.! On the eve of Super Tuesday, cast your vote for something everyone can agree on - major markdowns and eco-smart fashion. Receive an EXTRA 10% off on all merchandise already 50-80% off. Bring your friends, have some wine and exercise your right to shop smart.

Two exceptional Linda Loudermilk pieces will be on silent auction with bids starting at just $200 - both items originally $1500+. 15% of auction proceeds donated to Growing Home.

Pivot, Chicago’s very first eco-friendly boutique opened September 4th, 2007. The owner, Jessa Brinkmeyer, opened the boutique to create a place that encouraged sustainability,while helping the environment, all without compromising the trends of an ever-changing fashion world. The shop boasts over 30 designers, all of which create their lines using eco-smart materials and processes. This means that the use of these materials has a lower impact on the environment and is better for its wearer. Some of these materials include bamboo, hemp, linen, organic cotton, soy and Mongolian cashmere. Yet, it’s not just the clothes that are saving the environment at Pivot, everything from the fixtures to shopping bags and air quality to light bulbs is environmentally friendly. They even donate a percentage of their profits to Growing Home, a Chicago organization that helps train and create jobs for the less fortunate within the organic agriculture business. Stop by if you’re looking for another guilt-free reason to go shopping. This time you’re saving the environment, in designer jeans nonetheless! Now you can have your fashion and save the world too!
-Nora Silver

Travel Chic with Cyndi Chan – Trunk Show at MALABAR CHICAGO

Check out the latest looks from designer Cyndi Chan. This luxury spring collection is fully functional for the travel-loving jet setter as it's wrinkle free and weather proof! These timeless chic clothes will take you anywhere you want to go.

Meet & greet designer Cyndi Chan - her first trunk show this year at the elegant MALABAR CHICAGO boutique located at the hippest part of Chicago (1880 North Damen St.)

Date: February 2nd (Saturday) & February 9th (Saturday)
Time: 12 - 6pm
* Free Raffle drawings - Guests who come to the trunk show have an instant chance to win one of Cyndi Chan’s signature satin trench coat. Retail price $350.

Find out more at or
Please call MALABAR Chicago boutique - 773.321.6685

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Trade News: Eksempel Brand to Launch for Fall '08 Market

Famed Denmark Brand Eksempel will launch at the Tricot Showroom in New York for the fall '08 market. The brand, which launched in 2001, is highly sophisticated, yet extremely wearable.

Designer Pernille Winther’s extraordinary working of pattern and cut, combined with a poetic sense of fabric and silhouette proposes a modern way to envisage the female body. Eksempel radiates understated elegance surrounded by an air of contemporary aesthetic thought. Pernille Winther, founder of Eksempel, graduated from the acknowledged Danish School of design Danmarks Designskole in 2000 and has worked with several well-known Danish and foreign designers prior to creating her own brand.

The autumn/winter 2008 collection plays with belts, buttons, stripes and check patterns and presents a mix of crispy silk, satin-cotton, shiny wool-mix and leather. The silhouettes are both voluminous with structured and draped cuts and fitted pieces. Tight fitted pants combined with oversized tops. The key piece for the collection is as always the dress, easy to wear, easy to dress up or down.
The accessories are check patterned scarves and leather/silk belts.
The color palette is focused on black, cigar and crème and lived up with vibrant purple.

Fall 2008 collection will be showing at Tricot Showroom in SOHO at 70 Greene St. NY,NY 10012, from Feb. 5-14, 2008.

To make an appt. please call 213.891.0663

Monday, January 28, 2008

AWI'S Protégés

This year in Florence, Italy, the renowned trade fair for men’s knitwear trends, Pitti Uomo, welcomes its new little sister, Pitti Woman, to the party. The revered Italian fashion event ran from January 9-12 and is produced by Pitti Immagine Group. This year, in a pre-collection showcasing, womenswear was represented with approximately 40 collections for the 2008-2009 fall/winter season.

Pitti Immagine, the parent group of Pitti Uomo and Pitti Woman, is celebrated for uniting fashion, business and creativity through fashion fairs and event productions. This year, Pitti Immagine feted Australian Wool Innovation and marked the 200th year anniversary of the arrival of Merino wool to Europe from Australia.

One of Pitti Immagine’s amazing strengths is showcasing the relationship between consumption, aesthetic and cultural design. The strong bond between communications and marketing is the core of the Pitti Immagine Group’s impetus. Not only is the group incredibly savvy and excited about marketing fashion as a lifestyle rather than a consumptive experience, they are also remarkably philanthropic.

Through the program Protégé, the Australian Wool Innovation matched emerging designers with established fashion royalty, including the likes of Karl Lagerfeld and Donatella Versace in a collaborative program. Together the old guard and the new created a collection using Merino wool.

We had the chance to chat with Andreina Longhi, Director at Attila PR who represents AWI for this program. The protégé program is a great idea. Where did the impetus come from?
Andreina Longhi: I am a regular reader of Mrs. Suzy Menkes articles in the International Herald Tribune and very often my ideas come from there. In this particular case, last year I read an article about designers with the scaring title ‘Who’s next in fashion? No one.’ , and another one on Rei Kawakubo explaining how she was looking after new talents, her protégés. They were both really inspiring: I did a cocktail of the two, and voilà, my project was ready!

RTR: How do your recruit and match up your mentors and mentees?
AL: First of all, we have contacted several master designers, proposing them to be part of this project. Some of them accepted at once, others were not interested. To the first ones, we asked if they had an assistant or a member of their team that could be worth an investment. Francisco Costa from Calvin Klein proposed Julian. Johannis was suggested by the Smith entourage, but never worked with them. For the other masters, I did a choice of good upcoming designers and the masters chose the ones who were closer to their style.

RTR: The program seems to have experienced phenomenal success- what do you attribute that to?

AL: We are all aware that the fashion community is getting older: we have birthday celebrations every day, for 20 to 45 years in the business. You will agree with me that discovering and launching young talents is an important issue for the future of fashion and for an Association like AWI this is the best investment. It means new ideas, new energies and also new businesses.

RTR: What is one must-have piece for the 2008-2009 fall winter season?
AL: An outfit of Sandra Backlund in Merino wool!
Photo Credit: top, Kristian Aadnevick, bottom, Sandra Backlund
-Kari Skaflen

Fashion Reality Casting Call!

Can you identify the best designs from the top designers with a glance?

Are Manolo, Prada and Gucci a few or your favorite words?

Is one of the best things in your life your wardrobe and footwear?

Do you spend hours lost in a copy of Elle Magazine,
daydreaming about a career in fashion?

If so, the CW Television Network and the creators of
"America's Next Top Model" and "Project Runway"
are about to offer you the opportunity of a lifetime!

No experience necessary.
But style, intelligence and a great work ethic are a must!

We are now casting an untitled reality competition that will take viewers (and cast members) behind the fashion world's velvet rope for a chance to work side-by-side with a who's-who of high fashion and a chance at a career-launching grand prize.

Contact via for further information.

Please submit a photo, a brief description of yourself and full contact details.

Go to for
application and eligibility requirements.


Thursday, January 24, 2008

Bond No. 9's Bryant Park

Among the city oasis of perfume brand Bond no. 9’s illustrious scents is Bryant Park. If you want to be fashion-forward when it comes to your fragrance, this illustrious midtown inspired scent is the ultimate concoction. Nestled among serene greenery with the skyline as a backdrop, the perfume boasts lily of the valley, rhubarb, pink pepper, rose, raspberry, amber, and patchouli.

By marking each and every Manhattan neighborhood with its very own scent—the very first in the fragrance industry—this brand, like New York City itself, is unique and vibrant. Created by perfumer Michel Almairac of Robertet, Bryant Park is the perfect scent to get in fashion week mode as Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week is held in the tents right in the heart of Bryant Park. Coming up starting February 1, 2008 is the fall '08 shows and we are getting in the mood to bring you all of the coverage thanks to this very scent!
-Vicki Salemi

Dunst to Collaborate on Knitwear Line

Kirsten Dunst is truly having a fashion moment. As the recent muse of Miu Miu and the current model in the spring '08 ads, Kirsten is now going to collaborate with Lutz + Patmos on a luxury knitwear line! Past designers for the line include Liv Tyler, Sofia Coppola and Julianne Moore. It will launch on February 3rd during New York Fashion Week!

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Must-have Minis

If you've got the legs, flaunt em' with these fashionable minis.

Chloe Fine check mini skirt

3.1 Phillip Lim Silk bubble skirt

Miu Miu Jacquard pleated skirt

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Lindsay's Leg Work

On Thursday, January 17th, actress Lindsay Lohan was seen spotted in cream So Low Cropped Leggings as she was shopping around Barneys NY in Beverly Hills. The leggings ($37) will be available at Bloomingdale's in about a month, but if you want them now, click here.
photo credit: WENN

Monday, January 21, 2008

The Met's Blog.Mode Is Addressing Fashion

Among the inspired exhibits available at The Metropolitan Museum of Art is “Blog.Mode: Addressing Fashion,” which runs now until April 18, 2008. The designs addressed here are as avante-garde as ever, with pieces that are the truest indications of conceptual fashion. Highlights include Comme de Garçon’s pale beige polyester organza shawl and silver polyester and cellophane panné velvet dress, as well as Hussein Chalayan’s pink fiberglass and pink nylon tulle dress. Both pieces are created with such sculpture that they evoke a sense of space and strength that is easily stirred by inspiring architecture.Click Here for more information!

Photo 1: Olivier Theyskens (Belgian, b. 1977) for Nina Ricci (French, founded 1932)Evening Dress, spring/summer 2007
Steel gray heat-crinkled silk organza embroidered with linear chain stitch in white silk The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Gift of Mario Grauso, 2007 (2007.376.2a, b)

Photo 2: Jean Paul Gaultier (French, b. 1952)
Des Robes Qui Se Rerobent Evening ensemble, spring/summer 2001
Beaded pink silk with overlay of silk tulle, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Purchase, Catharine Breyer Van Bomel Foundation Gift and various funds from various donors, 2001 (2001.455.2a-e)

Photo 3: John Galliano (British, Gibraltar 1960) for Christian Dior Haute Couture (French, founded 1947)
Creation Ensemble, autumn/winter 2005-2006
Beige silk satin and synthetic net, blue silk taffeta with hammered silver, rhinestone, and chenille embroidery; white leather
The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Purchase, The Dorothy Strelsin Foundation Inc. Gift, 2006 (2006.22a–d)
-Georgia Bistolaridis

Kate Bosworth - The Epitome of Style

To us, Kate Bosworth just exudes style. So we were utterly enthralled with happiness when the February issue of Vogue made its way into our offices with our fashion muse on the cover. Here are some of our favorite excerpts from the Vogue article regarding her style.

"She really puts ease into clothes, even if they're grown up clothes. It's the T-shirt generation that understands this idea, and I think that what we have in common is this understanding - the juxtaposition of elegance and ease. I naturally design with this attitude in mind, and I think she dresses with the same attitude in mind," says designer Thakoon on Kate.

"I actually hate shopping. If I could go through the collections as I just did (in Phillip Lim's studio), that would be heaven. Phillip's clothes are so easy to wear, and for me that matters most," says Kate Bosworth.

"Too many actresses play it safe," says Lazoro Hernandez of Proenza Schouler. "She takes risks and understands creativity."

Our all-time favorite Bosworth look is the Fendi fur jacket she wore to their show at the Great Wall of China this past October!

Be sure to pick up Vogue to see Kate at her best.

P.J.London Sale - 60% off on Jimmy Choo, Manolo and More

P.J. LONDON - LA’s Top Designer Resale Boutique is having a major sale where you'll find Jimmy Choo, Manolo Blahnik, Marni and Versace and more at 60% Off! P.J. LONDON recently celebrated 25 years in business and is once again hosting their renowned sale this Thursday, January 24 to Sunday, January 27, 2008. This sale is a favorite among devoted customers as this store is strictly current with almost nothing more than two years old. You'll find women lined outside this Brentwood boutique well before the sale opens, so get there early!

11661 San Vicente Blvd.
Brentwood, CA 310-826-4649
Mon–Sat 10:30-6:00 | Sun 11:00-5:00

Marc Came to Town to Celebrate!

To the delight of Damen Avenue's Chicago Shoppers, Marc by Marc Jacobs has opened its doors. The unveiling has been eagerly anticipated for months and was worth the wait. The store itself is an airy space with massive cornerstone windows and heated floors. It's chock-full of Marc’s iconic, pop culture infused clothing and accessories. Marc by Marc Jacobs contains a fabulous selection that begs perusal and loitering: coffee table books, perfumes, bags, womens and menswear, plus footwear, all with Marc’s signature wit.

In honor of the opening, Marc Jacobs hosted a gorgeous sit-down dinner and after party on January 18th at a warehouse that was over two floors in Wicker Park. Chicago’s fashionable crowd came out in numbers to raise their glasses to Marc Jacobs’ first Chicago store. Marc himself flew in from Paris to help host and celebrate. Guests were delighted by the lighthearted evening of dinner and dancing. The dinner served was a first course of baby arugula, red oak and watercress salad, an entrée choice of either pan seared Icelandic arctic char or roasted new Zealand baby lamb chops persillade or eggplant roulade and a dessert trio of chocolate pot du crème, strawberry tart and white chocolate. Several dj's provided live mixing and Perry Farrell of Lollapalooza even took to the stage at one point.

Marc’s business partner, the affable Robert Duffy was in town to help open the store’s doors. When asked who inspired him, Duffy generously referenced the staff both at the Damen location and at the brand’s headquarters. Check out our video interview with him.

The event benefited Common Threads, a nonprofit that educates children about nutrition. Marc Jacobs is located at 1714 N. Damen Avenue in Chicago.
-Kari Skaflen

Friday, January 18, 2008

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YSL Fuses Fashion, Art and Technology

YSL showed their 2008 men's collection in Paris in a very unique way. Creative Director Stefano Pilati didn't present the collection with live models. Instead, editors, celebrities and industry professionals viewed the new collection by a video presentation, which fused art, technology and fashion, at the company's showroom at 16 rue d'Artois in Paris. Guests included Marc Newson and Charlotte Stockdale, Vincent Martinez, Catherine Deneuve, Robert Polet and Amira Casar.