The Best Thing To Happen To Magazines Since The Supermodel!


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Coachella Calling: Kate’s Quintessential Festival Style

kate bosworth coachella


When it comes to Coachella style, Kate Bosworth is the concert queen! Take a tip from the actress and Style Icon for your festival circuit style:  A flirty (and microscopic!) mini dress gets the outdoor treatment with a light parka – perfect for cool desert evenings – and rubber rain boots, an absolute outdoors must!!

The best part? This easy-as-pie outfit will work double-duty. Wear it at Coachella this spring, then toss it on again in June for Glastonbury in the UK this summer.

Now…how do we get backstage?

Image Credits:

Style Icons Shine in Gucci


Image Credit: Getty Images

When you hear the words “80’s inspired Gucci suit” you wouldn’t think of throwing this on a 17 year old and sending her down a red carpet, would you?  You might if the teen in question was the Cali-cool Zendaya Coleman, who has already become a Style Icon heavy weight thanks to her fun-loving – and fearless – fashion sense. The slouchy metallic suit – that practically begged  for some aviators – has a built in rock n roll vibe that Zendaya pulls off without a hitch – opened-toed booties and all.

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Image Credit: Getty Images

Gucci also has a modern, lady-like side, as well – enter Blake Lively. As the face of Gucci, Blake embodies fierce femininity. And frankly, who else can wear an applause-worthy daytime outfit so effortlessly?


Thierry Mugler’s Top-Off

Thierry Mugler is bringing back old-world luxury (and a subtle note of eco-friendly) with refillable perfume bottles, referential of a time before Ready To Wear and Over The Counter scents, when ladies would have to head directly to the perfumer to top-off empty fragrance bottles.

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Mugler’s recycle-ready incentive means the perfume bottle is no longer a disposable powder-room accoutrement, relegated to the trash once the final drops are doled out. Attention, not to mention an increased sense of value, is once again returned to the ornate, hand-polished vessels, which have become as iconic and cherished as the scents.

Not one to wax poetic about the past without staying light-years ahead of the curve, the design house, in true Mugler fashion, executes this throwback with a decidedly futuristic flair – perfume is dispensed while you wait from The Source, a recently redesigned space-age fragrance fountain found at most Thierry Mugler beauty counters. Four of Mugler’s signature scents – Angel, Angel EDT, Alien, and Womanity – will be on tap at the Source in the UK, while Angel and Alien will be available in the US.

The result? A sustainable new take on fragrance shopping that shifts the focus to a one-on-one interaction with the brand, transforming perfume shopping into a couture experience – and one that comes with benefits to your purse strings, as well: The reusable bottles translate to about 35-40 per cent savings to the consumer with each fill, for shopping that is as wallet-friendly as it is eco-friendly. Who knew recycling was so sweet-smelling?

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Image Credits: Thierry Mugler

Don’t Doubt Doutzen Kroes: A Candid Interview with the Dutch Supermodel

Doutzen Kroes has always been a model of physical perfection (and lingerie), but what is even more admirable is her honesty about the modeling industry, her body, and how she copes with pressures to stay thin – even when the truth ain’t pretty.

The Dutch beauty announced her second pregnancy last week via instagram, with this beautiful black and white portrait by Duy Vo featuring her enviable physique – and a small baby bump. Doutzen has been ranked the world’s fifth-highest-paid supermodel, but the Victoria’s Secret Angel – and role model – understands that success in the fashion industry can come at a cost. See what the stnuner has to say about body dysmorphia, how she stays in shape and healthy, and what she really thinks about reality TV shows about modeling.

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I can’t stand when models say “Oh, I eat whatever I want — fried chicken for breakfast, dessert with every meal.” Is that reality? I work really hard for it [my body] because it’s my job! I have to be in the gym every day. I have to be really healthy. I have to give up things for it. Nobody’s going to win the world Olympics without practicing. At some point, I had to tell my agent, “I can’t not eat, because I get hungry!”
Has anyone close to you dealt with an eating disorder or body dysmorphia? I think every woman has doubts and insecurities about her body. I’ve never had struggles with anorexia or anything like that, but I’ve dealt with the fact that I always had to watch my weight and I’ve been told so often to lose weight. Sometimes it’s a struggle to keep up with my own photos, where the lighting is perfect, the makeup is done, and the images have been retouched. That’s not what I see when I look in the mirror! I felt really empowered when I said, “Okay, this is my body, the best that I can be. Deal with it.” I was able to do that because I had a nice life and great family back in Holland. Having a safe, solid background that I could always fall back on made me feel very empowered. There are a lot of girls from poor countries who enter the modeling industry and feel that they can’t say no when an agent or director tells them to lose weight or to do something that they aren’t comfortable with, because they have nothing to fall back on and nowhere to go. Their biggest fear is to go back to their old lives. I want to be a role model to help other models to feel strong and beautiful in their own way.
With awareness of body-image issues increasing, have you noticed changes within the industry? Since the CFDA [Council of Fashion Designers of America] and Anna Wintour started this health initiative in 2007, a handful of designers have really begun to move away from the unhealthy industry standards. Prada recently had a show with all curvy women, and Michael Kors always shows with different kinds of models, not the ones we saw on TV that were so shocking. I definitely see a change. It’s more interesting and more fun for people to see an athletic girl or a curvy girl on the runway. . . . We’re all individuals and beautiful in our own way. Everyone is different. If all models looked the same, I don’t think women could relate at all.
What do you think of the modeling industry now? Right now, models don’t bring any character to the runways — no personality. It’s not like with Cindy and Linda and Naomi, who owned the runways! Today’s models have become interchangeable and disposable. They are scared of doing something wrong and losing a job, so they are afraid to show personality! Fashion Week used to be so exciting because it was like a reunion for all us models to see each other again, but now there’s a constant rotation of new people every season. It’s not as fun now!
How accurately do reality shows like America’s Next Top Model portray the industry? These shows are entertainment. They always add a bit more drama. I saw a modeling show in Holland, and the contestants had to pose naked on a horse. I never had to do that! It attracted lots of viewers, but it’s still TV — not reality! I do think it’s good that shows likeANTM don’t show the misconception that the industry is always glamorous, because it’s not! We have to work really hard. I’ve been doing this for 10 years, and now I’m getting some of the glamorous side. But in the beginning, it’s taking the subway to go to castings, running around. . . . It’s really hard work! In the beginning, you don’t get to fly home and visit family whenever you want because you don’t have the money, and you can’t miss a moment because the next opportunity could be waiting.

Executive Chef: An Interview with the White House Pastry Chef

As election season gears up, Cambridge, MA welcomed a DC insider who wows pols on both sides of the aisle: White House pastry chef Bill Yosses. Marking his third year presenting at Harvard’s fall Science & Cooking public lecture series, the man Obama calls “the Crust Master” schooled a rapt crowd with his talk “How Phase Changes Cause Deliciousness.” But first, Yosses chatted with us about the issues — like winter gardens and reality TV. One of your responsibilities is tending the South Lawn kitchen garden.

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Image credit: NYTimes

What’s your philosophy on cooking seasonally?

Every chef would like to cook seasonally, but it’s not always possible, especially if you are living in a northern climate. Sometimes in the winter there’s not much, and for a pastry chef that basically means apples and pears. We love seasonal, we love local, but we are not limited by it. . . . Eliot Coleman, a farmer in Maine, is a great example of the way chefs and farmers are collaborating today. He has a four-season garden — in Maine, if you can believe that — and we use a similar system. They’re called hoops; it’s a hoop with plastic over it, and in the dead of winter you can still grow things underneath because the sun heats the ground during the day and allows ground water to collect. We’ve grown things at the White House in January in the snowfall.

A French take on Italian tiramisu for the former president and first lady of France, blown sugar apples filled with ice cream for a Chinese state dinner — how do you make desserts that are culturally relevant to White House visitors?

To me that has been one of the most interesting parts of the job. There are people coming from every corner of the world, so we do research in the kitchen. Of course, we want to learn about what kind of dishes and what ingredients the guests would like. Sometimes we’ll call the embassies; sometimes they send information to us.

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Image Credit: Free Republic

You have a deep interest in White House culinary history, which is heavily influenced by French cooking. How much of that history do you incorporate into your own recipes? I was trained in France, and I do use a lot of classical French techniques — all pastry chefs do. But we also love American desserts, and that’s what people expect; they’re coming to the White House. So, what we like to say is that the way we cook is like American jazz: we take a classic style, and then we innovate with it. What we do with cooking is what jazz is to classical music, with a European foundation.

Do you have any guilty-pleasure reality cooking shows? Top Chef? Cupcake Wars? You know, I don’t! But I like the fact that they are out there. Anything that gets people interested in food and cooking, I’m all for it. What I would love is if that interest would get translated into food knowledge — to really understanding what we are eating, what it does to our bodies, what the sources are. These days, what people really are interested in is who’s growing the food and how they are growing it. So, I think it’s entertaining, but on a very superficial level. I hope it brings people to understand more about food like we do here, where we are talking about food as a science.

Simkhai Style: Getting to know CFDA-Approved Designer Jonathan Simkhai

A word to the wise: Practice getting the spelling right. Simkhai is here to stay.

Jonathan Simkhai Photo

Image Credit: Jonathan Simkhai

Up-and-coming womenswear designer Jonathan Simkhai is more than just a (very) pretty face. At only 27, he’s wise beyond his years when it comes to understanding what makes the fashion industry – buyers, press, and clients – tick. He’s been steadily churning out several seasonal collections a year since he first started his clothing label in 2010, and has proven that he knows the business as well as the veterans.

So much so, he’s already been acknowledged by the CFDA, which has included him in its sophomore session of the {Fashion Incubator}, a two-year program that helps grow, sustain, and support fledgling fashion brands. Worldwide, W Hotels has also become a supporter of {Fashion Incubator}, which means participating designers better have their bags packed!

With a distinctive aesthetic – New York structure with a touch of carefree Cali – that references both coasts, Hollywood is taking note, too; Kristen Stewart wore a blouse and shorts from Simkhai’s pre-fall collection to introduce Bon Jovi at the 12.12.12 concert last winter.

W Hotels sent Simkhai across the globe to its location in Bangkok to soak up inspiration for upcoming collections, which we’re sure to see pop up in his coming collections. Before his big trip to Asia, we caught up with the winsome designer at Louis Boston, the first retailer to pick up his clothing line three years ago, to talk shop, NYFW, and men who love women who love menswear.

You got a start in your career at Louis Boston when you did the Designer Exposure series, and now that you’re back for a trunk show, you get to talk directly to your target audience and kind of “convince them” to buy your clothes. What do you like about interacting on such a close level with clients?
I really love connecting with clients! When you’re with a customer, you can see what’s making the sale, or what’s breaking the sale. When a showroom buyer comes in, it’s like “No. Yes. No. Yes.” I’m like, “Ok, well why not?” With clients they’ll say “This doesn’t fit me”, or “I don’t like the length, I want it longer.” And of course, when somebody buys something and they see the designer, it’s so much more exciting to wear it. They feel connected and invested in the piece.

As a young designer with only a few collections under your belt, what’s the biggest challenge about getting your line into stores? Do you find that people are more or less likely to want to work with a relatively new designer?
I think people take me just as seriously as a more veteran designer, but there are challenges for new designers. Store owners and buyers have a certain budget allocated for the season, so once you show your collection, you have to break in and replace someone else to get their portion of the buyers’ budget – more dollars don’t just show up. It’s about having to prove yourself when you’re competing for shelf space with designers who have been around for so long and have built up these houses. You have to come up with something new and fresh, and find a way to inspire your consumer, show them something they haven’t already seen.

Has being acknowledged by the CFDA helped put hearts – and checkbooks – at ease?
The backing of the CFDA has definitely given me the stamp of approval. Also, I sell at Barneys, Louis, and Ikram in Chicago so I’m past the first step of buyers being hesitant, of having to prove myself.

How did you initially grab the attention of the CFDA? What do you think they saw in you that made them want to give you that extra chance?
When I started with my first season, it was kind of a slow challenge to see what was important as a designer, to figure out the whole balance between being commercially valuable and editorially valuable. My first few seasons were about figuring out that balance, juggling and going back and forth, so once I figured that out I think the CFDA appreciated that I was really understanding the nature of my business. I was creating collections that were inspiring editors and that were commercial.

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A private moment with fashion’s own Fire Priestess Taylor Tomasi Hill during Simkhai’s presentation at Milk Studios during NYFW. Image Credit: Jonathan Simkhai

Has presenting your collections at New York Fashion Week helped – or hurt – you?
I feel like a lot of designers just want to show in New York. It’s like, “Ok, well, what are you showing in New York?” And in the beginning I didn’t understand what I was showing in New York either. I took three seasons off from doing New York Fashion Week, because my sales weren’t back up the editorial exposure I was getting. I’m not getting into this business just to get into magazines. I want to make clothes and dress women. And what women want to see [in magazines] is different than what women want to wear. Those are two different things, and you have to have both. So when I took that time off, they [the CFDA] were like “Ok, he’s being responsible, he’s thinking about his business”. Now it’s about bigger collections where I can have that balance between editorial and commercial pieces.

Suzy Menkes published an article last Spring in the New York Times called “The Circus of Fashion”, about how the focus of Fashion Week has shifted as outrageous bloggers and “famous for being famous” fashion whores are creating media frenzy. Do you think it’s still about generating sales or is it all about the spectacle?
The spectacle is very important, because your buzz is what drives sales. Having these blogs write about you creates a buzz, and for the customer who sits at their desk 10 hours a day and who might not be at the shows, it helps direct sales to, That’s really important because a lot of people really love fashion but really don’t have direct access to it. New York Fashion Week, for me, is a self-expression, a level of energy, something to be excited about. It’s great – I think you haven’t even seen the circus yet; it’s going to get even bigger!

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My top picks from Resort 2014. Image Credit: Jonathan Simkhai

Your clothing is really influenced by menswear, and women’s love of menswear.
Menswear has always been a fun angle for women to dress in. There’s something really rebellious about women wearing men’s clothing, like a boyfriend’s sweatshirt, and I love dressing that rebellious kind of girl, playing with that look and making it fun.

You’ve expressed interest in also doing a menswear collection. Why did you start with womenswear?
There’s a bigger market for womenswear, and women are willing to take more risks. If they love something, they’ll push it, they’ll believe in. They’re like little birds; they’ll wear your clothes and fly around and inspire, and help spread the word. Once you get them on your side, they’ll push their boyfriends, and fathers, and brothers, and husbands to buy the clothes too.

What’s different about the way men dress versus the way women dress? Do you think men just don’t have that sense of playfulness about the way they dress?
They do, but men just pay attention to different details. I think that women usually dress for men or other women, where men just think a little bit more about “What’s comfortable?” or “What can I get away with?” I’m like that at least.

You’re born and raised in Manhattan, and have really identified with the pulse of NYC, but you newest collection has a major Cali-vibe!
For Spring/Summer 2013, I was spending a lot of time on the West Coast, and I was inspired by California in the 70’s, The Lords of Dogtown and the skate revolution. I looked to how rebellious they were and they just loved what they’re doing and didn’t care what they were wearing. I took that idea and spun it into this Cali-cool, “I didn’t try too hard” vibe.

Jonathan SimkhaiLooks from Fall 2013. Image Credit: Jonathan Simkhai

LOUIS BOSTON ON SIMKHAI: The decades-old fashion institution on why Simkhai was a shoe-in.

Jonathan Simkhai may have been knighted with the NYC-based CFDA stamp of approval, but the international success of his label can trace its beginnings to Beantown, where Louis Boston was the first retailer to pick up his clothing three years ago.

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An iconic favorite from Spring/Summer 2013. Image via Jonathan Simkhai

Simkhai’s creative mix of masculine and feminine is what initially caught the eye of the buying team at Louis, which has been slinging high fashion to Boston’s Best-Dressed for over 100 years. “His pieces are beautiful and distinctively ambiguous, and his attention to fabrics like cashmere, wool, cotton and silk, as well as his attention to how a garment is tailored and finished, is really what made his work stand out to Louis,” explains Maria Fei, VP of Operations.

Needless to say, Simkhai stuck. “His line quickly became a part of the store’s contemporary selection,” says Fei. “As a designer, Jonathan is unique. His collection has classic elements while being sexy and feminine and is perfect for the modern, urban woman.”

His aesthetic – New York structure with a touch of carefree Cali – is just the perfect formula for Boston’s chic sensibilities. Louis PR Manager Liana Krupp weighs in: “His clothes work for Boston because there’s a versatility that can be incorporated with any women’s closet. The way he cuts his clothes has an element of classic simplicity, without ever being boring. He’s one of the designers that get us excited about where American fashion is going!”

So what’s on the horizon for Simkhai’s upcoming collection? “True to his sporty ways, expect to see leather hoodies, bombers, and boxy pony-hair sweatshirts with girly touches.” Fei reveals. Hit up Louis now for Simkhai’s breezy Pre-Spring and Spring/Summer 2013 collections in a delicious palette of dreamy blues, chartreuse, pink and pops of neon yellow, and stay tuned for his Pre-Fall selection later this summer.

Invest in Style

Like any fixed asset, the perfect handbag, shoe, suit, or jewelry is a purchase that should be carefully considered. Weigh your options and choose wisely, and your investment will accrue interest as a piece you return to again and again.

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Image Credit: The Blonde Salad

Step One: Assess gaps in your fashion portfolio. What do you find yourself constantly buying, getting discouraged with, and tossing or donating? Pay a little more upfront for quality and craftsmanship, and you’ll find that you’ll have to replace it less often, if ever!

Step Two: Narrow down your options. While many design houses offer seasonal collections across a range of products – from clothing to accessories – many specialize in one thing, and do it better than anyone else. Research the best fashion houses known for that special luxury piece you know you can’t live without, and choose one or two to deepen your search.

Step Three: Determine cost per use. You’ve honed in on your target. But, will you get a lot of use out of your investment, or will it be relinquished to the dreaded back of the closet? Nix this criteria if cost per use is high, but impact per use is off the charts. The key is to strike the right balance between wearing something breathtaking and memorable to “You really need to do laundry more often…I’ve seen you wear that three times this week!”


Step Four: Estimate cost and effect. Will having this piece change your life? Confidence comes from within, but a perfectly made shoe can give you that extra pep in your step, and putting down a hand-stitched, buttery leather satchel onto the table at a board meeting instills a sense of power that no amount of affirmations will.

Step Five: Evaluate possible interest. The right investment piece is something that will become an heirloom. Treat it right, and you could be passing it down to future generations, or at the very least, reselling to a collector.

1.) Pick a perfectly tailored jacket with a twist – opt for a lux detail like a mink collar, or pick a unique color like red or fuschia, which makes it special enough to stand out in your wardrobe.

2.) Spoil yourself with the perfect IT-bag, but give it a major boost with a rich material like alligator. The best investment is a classic shape – read: wearable for everyday – but in an extraordinary color.

3.) Every investor needs an updated version of the tennis bracelet. A wrap-around style gives shimmer that is subtle but not tacky.

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