Home 2012 April

Fashion By Design

Kaufman Franco’s Ken Kaufman and Isaac Franco preview their fall 2012 collection with SaksPOV and talk about their fashion industry marathon

For Kaufman Franco fashion isn’t simply about great clothes, it’s a dialogue with their dream girl — a woman who is confident, sophisticated and has just a touch of sass. “She’s kind of good girl/bad girl,” says Ken Kaufman, who along with co-creative director Isaac Franco invited SaksPOV to their 57th Street atelier for a chat about fashion and a preview of the fall 2012 collection. If the house’s celebrity fans are any indication, Kaufman is right on target with his description. Halle Berry, Jennifer Aniston and Taylor Swift have all worn Kaufman Franco on the red carpet and then some. “It’s not really sexy,” says Franco of the collection. “It’s sensual, seductive. It’s not precious.” As if on cue, the two routinely finish each…

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For Kaufman Franco fashion isn’t simply about great clothes, it’s a dialogue with their dream girl — a woman who is confident, sophisticated and has just a touch of sass.

“She’s kind of good girl/bad girl,” says Ken Kaufman, who along with co-creative director Isaac Franco invited SaksPOV to their 57th Street atelier for a chat about fashion and a preview of the fall 2012 collection.

If the house’s celebrity fans are any indication, Kaufman is right on target with his description. Halle Berry, Jennifer Aniston and Taylor Swift have all worn Kaufman Franco on the red carpet and then some. “It’s not really sexy,” says Franco of the collection. “It’s sensual, seductive. It’s not precious.” As if on cue, the two routinely finish each other’s sentences.

Founded in 2004, by the fashion industry alums who first met as students at Parsons in the 1980’s, Kaufman Franco embodies a perfect blend of streamlined designs, body conscious tailoring and couture-level details like embroidery and intricate hand beadwork to their ready-to-wear and evening looks.

Such finery, however wasn’t created overnight. Kaufman and Franco have spent the better part of 25 years toiling as designer at fashion houses from the Bob Mackie  — whom under they learned how, with the help of gravity and corsetry hold a  beaded dress up (not to mention the many brushes with fame they had outfitting Mackie’s arguably most famous client, Cher) — to Valentino in Rome, where they worked under the legendary Valentino Garavani and immersed themselves in extreme luxury (“We lined dresses with sable!” exclaims Franco). The duo were also behind the resurgence of Anne Klein in 2001, where they got to learn branding,  creating accessories, eyewear and all the toppings that make for a jaw-dropping look.

“We learned each of these businesses from furs to shoes , sunglasses,” says Kaufman who, along with Franco credits their vast and deep experience as designers to the execution of their pristine garments. “We navigated our way through China and India on rickshaw bicycles to work with the best embroiderers.”

All of this research and real-world experience has resulted in a fall 2012 collection that is nothing short of breathtaking. Anatomical seaming  is based on the musculature of a woman’s body, delicate lace is rubberized for a futuristic feel a beaded cocktail dress took hundreds of hours to create. The good girl/bad girl persona is articulated in a ladylike  three-quarter coat with a floral applique executed in  smooth black leather.

While the road has been long, the designers usher each new project with gusto and are proud to be self-funded. Their advice for young designers who want to follow in their footsteps today? Buck up. “It’s nothing like Project Runway,” laughs Kaufman.




Prim and Prommer

Erin Fetherston and Saks style one lucky high school senior for prom!

When high school senior, Susan Menashe, won our latest Facebook contest, she was ecstatic. You see, the 18 year old doesn’t have a date for prom, so she needed a bit of a confidence boost in order to ask the boy of choice to be her date. SaksPOV had just the thing. After telling us her story on our Facebook profile, Susan was chosen by designer Erin Fetherston to be styled head-to-toe for her prom. “I’m the oldest in my family, so there’s no big sister to help me pick out which style dress looks best on me,” she wrote. “With your help, I know I will look and feel AMAZING!!! Please, please, please pick me!” So, the day finally came last week when Menashe…

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When high school senior, Susan Menashe, won our latest Facebook contest, she was ecstatic. You see, the 18 year old doesn’t have a date for prom, so she needed a bit of a confidence boost in order to ask the boy of choice to be her date. SaksPOV had just the thing. After telling us her story on our Facebook profile, Susan was chosen by designer Erin Fetherston to be styled head-to-toe for her prom.

“I’m the oldest in my family, so there’s no big sister to help me pick out which style dress looks best on me,” she wrote. “With your help, I know I will look and feel AMAZING!!! Please, please, please pick me!”

So, the day finally came last week when Menashe (with her mom and grandmas in tow) met Fetherston in the VIP suite at Saks Fifth Avenue in New York City.

“After meeting Erin, I didn’t look at her as just a designer, I looked up to her as a friend,” Menashe said. “She was so sweet and down to earth, and had no problem connecting with me.”

Menashe and Fetherston started going through the vast selection of ERIN by Erin Fetherston dresses, trying on a bunch before she chose the perfect dress — the Bow Bodice Dress in Turquoise.

“The bright color looked great with her skin tone and hair color and the bow ruching across the bust line is really flattering,” Fetherston raved. “Plus, the circle skirt and butterfly hemline are perfect for dancing! What I love is that she’ll be able to wear this dress again, even after her prom. It’s a great transitional style that she can pair back to sandals or wedge heels for the rest of the summer.”

Next up it was a stop at the shoe department for the perfect pair of heels to go with the dress. Fetherston saw the perfect pair, a nude patent platform heel by Brian Atwood, almost right away. Menashe was game.

“I love a nude patent platform heel because it instantly elongates the leg and is a great investment piece as it’s a classic that can be paired back to almost everything in your closet,” Fetherston commented.

While Menashe had her makeup done on the Saks beauty floor, Fetherston headed over to the jewelry counter to choose the perfect pair of earrings to top off the whole look. In the end, it was a pair of Kenneth Jay Lane crystal bow earrings that added that final playful and touch of sparkle.

In the end, Susan went home with the prom look of her dreams and a memory of a day with Fetherston that she will not soon forget.

“I knew that on my own I would never be able to make these decisions. Thanks to Erin, I will now look my best,” Susan said. “My idea of prom was so over the top, with her help I saw that simple and playful could be even more beautiful.”

So, will she be asking this boy to prom after all?

“Confidence wasn’t such a sure thing as I walked in,” she explained. “But now when I see how beautiful I looked in my dress and make up, I feel that there’s nothing that can stop me. I know exactly who to ask as a date, and now I’m sure to do it.”


Love It: 3.1 Phillip Lim

Love It: 3.1 Phillip Lim Men’s Trousers

The Limsanity continues at Saks! And it’s not just for the ladies. Take for example these 3.1 Phillip Lim pants from his Spring 2012 men’s collection. They start out as simple ivory cotton trousers with a tab waist, but Lim dip-dyes them to create an ombré effect that begins blow the knees and gradations to solid black. Lim took inspiration for the collection from California’s skateboarding culture. It’s not a far cry from his Huntington Beach upbringing.

Learn more about Phillip Lim on SaksPOV and check out pictures from his shop-in-shop opening event at Saks with W Magazine.

The Limsanity continues at Saks! And it’s not just for the ladies. Take for example these 3.1 Phillip Lim pants from his Spring 2012 men’s collection. They start out as simple ivory cotton trousers with a tab waist, but Lim dip-dyes them to create an ombré effect that begins blow the knees and gradations to solid black. Lim took inspiration for the collection from California’s skateboarding culture. It’s not a far cry from his Huntington Beach upbringing.

Learn more about Phillip Lim on SaksPOV and check out pictures from his shop-in-shop opening event at Saks with W Magazine.


Underneath it All

Equmen underpinnings for men provide the perfect foundation for the best men’s spring and summer look. SaksPOV gets the scoop.

From slim suiting to an elegant tux, it all starts with a great foundation. Equmen’s line of Precision under layers is designed with physiotherapy techniques that help improve posture and assist with core stability. The garments are engineered with technical specifications that offer enough support to use during athletic activities, but comfortable enough for daily use. And the bonus is that they are all machine washable. Here, SaksPOV identifies three ways to wear them: Black Tie For black tie affairs the v-neck in white is your go to. The compression properties of the shirt with help you look slimmer and give you a boost of confidence. Office Thankfully, this shirt is designed to provide optimal alignment by gently pulling the shoulders back. Ideal for a…

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From slim suiting to an elegant tux, it all starts with a great foundation. Equmen’s line of Precision under layers is designed with physiotherapy techniques that help improve posture and assist with core stability. The garments are engineered with technical specifications that offer enough support to use during athletic activities, but comfortable enough for daily use. And the bonus is that they are all machine washable.

Here, SaksPOV identifies three ways to wear them:

Black Tie

For black tie affairs the v-neck in white is your go to. The compression properties of the shirt with help you look slimmer and give you a boost of confidence.

EqumenEqumen

Office

Thankfully, this shirt is designed to provide optimal alignment by gently pulling the shoulders back. Ideal for a day at work.

EqumenEqumen

Weekend

Whether you’re going for a quick run, headed to the gym, or just spending a leisurely afternoon at the park, the singlet undershirt has got you covered. Its moisture wicking properties will keep you dry and the helix-mapping technology helps to ensure that your core is supported.

EqumenEqumen


Fashion Star: Season 1, Episode 7

Terron gives his takes on episode seven of Fashion Star

Fashion Star is a competition between designers. But there’s an interesting sub-plot: the weekly face-off between the buyers and mentors. We’re not technically competing, of course. But like many up-and-coming designers, the Fashion Star contestants have to decide whose advice to take. Do you trust the owners of other design businesses? Or the buyers who have the final say on whether or not to purchase your clothes? Fashion Star gives us a way to compare, because the mentors save someone every week and the buyers dismiss someone every week. So… Who Has Done the Best Job So Far? The Mentors (Jessica Simpson, John Varvatos, Nicole Richie) or the Buyers (Caprice Willard, Terron Schaefer, Nicole Christie). Tell me in the comments section below. What It’s Like…

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Fashion Star is a competition between designers. But there’s an interesting sub-plot: the weekly face-off between the buyers and mentors. We’re not technically competing, of course. But like many up-and-coming designers, the Fashion Star contestants have to decide whose advice to take. Do you trust the owners of other design businesses? Or the buyers who have the final say on whether or not to purchase your clothes?

Fashion Star gives us a way to compare, because the mentors save someone every week and the buyers dismiss someone every week. So…

Who Has Done the Best Job So Far?

The Mentors (Jessica Simpson, John Varvatos, Nicole Richie) or the Buyers (Caprice Willard, Terron Schaefer, Nicole Christie). Tell me in the comments section below.

What It’s Like to Be a Judge

I spoke with W Magazine on the topic. You can find the interview here.

The Elimination

Sarah Parrott will not be our Fashion Star. From a buyer’s standpoint, this was an easy decision. Sarah started criticizing her own work, which is usually a bad idea. But this wasn’t just a case of an artist being self-critical. Sarah’s designs could have gone on sale to the American public in a matter of minutes. It was a terrible time to give viewers reasons not to buy her work.

I’m not downplaying honesty and self-reflection. But confidence in your design decisions is essential. Without it, you can get bogged down in second-guessing and general creative paralysis, making it nearly impossible for an up-and-coming designer to handle the workload.

Look around at the world’s most successful designers. They may have some, ahem, quirky personality traits. But a lack of self-confidence is rarely one of them.

Life is Tweet

Kara’s elegant shorts look is available here right now. As for next week’s winner, you can let me know how much you adore/despise it in real time. I’ll be live-tweeting @Saks during the show.

 

MORE:

Watch Online: Missed the show? Watch it online!

Terron’s Takes: Terron gives his takes for each episode of Fashion Star.

Visit us on Facebook: Meet mentors Nicole Richie, Jessica Simpson and John Varvatos — and sign up for updates.

Shop the Looks: Shop the winning styles from every episode of Fashion Star.


Test Drive: Bobbi Brown Long-Wear Eye Collection

SaksPOV gives Bobbi Brown’s latest eyewear collection a spin

The invitation came via email. A Challenge. Bobbi Brown invited SaksPOV and a select group of influential beauty bloggers including Glambr and Beauty Blitz to test drive her latest collection, a line of crème eye shadows, liners and one lush mascara that promises to stay put from morning coffee to after work cocktails without a hitch.  A lofty goal, sure, but with Bobbi’s track record of creating the prettiest, most effortless beauty looks mimicked by millions of women across the globe, I knew I was in excellent hands. Bobbi wowed crowd and walked us through the range of colors from deep amethyst to sparkling topazes, and then it was my turn. Kim Soan, one of Bobbi’s key makeup artists selected Cool Lilac for my skin…

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The invitation came via email. A Challenge. Bobbi Brown invited SaksPOV and a select group of influential beauty bloggers including Glambr and Beauty Blitz to test drive her latest collection, a line of crème eye shadows, liners and one lush mascara that promises to stay put from morning coffee to after work cocktails without a hitch.  A lofty goal, sure, but with Bobbi’s track record of creating the prettiest, most effortless beauty looks mimicked by millions of women across the globe, I knew I was in excellent hands.

Bobbi wowed crowd and walked us through the range of colors from deep amethyst to sparkling topazes, and then it was my turn. Kim Soan, one of Bobbi’s key makeup artists selected Cool Lilac for my skin tone with the Black Violet in the outer corners topped off by Black Plum liner to intensify the look

Here’s a detailed tutorial on how to get the perfect smoky eye — and make it last!

  1. When using a cream shadow, start from mid-lid and smooth it out to the outer corner of the eye, then go against the grain and smooth from mid-lid to inner corner of the eye.
  2. When applying the Long-Wear Eye Pencil, build on the outer corners then taper off to the inner corner, you always want the thicket part to be at the edge of your eye. Use an eyeliner brush to smooth.
  3. Use excess eyeliner from the eyeliner brush to apply liner to your bottom lashes, the pencil will create too thick of a line.
  4. The effect is smoky, yet soft and Bobbi kept her promise — we went from breakfast, to yoga with Bobbi’s instructor to lunch and then dinner with out flaking, dark eyes or fading. Mission accomplished. Bobbi Brown’s Long-Wear Eye Collection hits Saks this month.

Stay tuned as we test-drive more products that Saks has to offer!



It’s Limsanity!

Step aside, Jeremy. Phillip Lim is coming to Saks!

When Phillip Lim launched his 3.1 Phillip Lim line with business partner Wen Zhou back in 2005, they named it so for a rather straightforward reason, really. No lucky numbers involved, no numerology obsessions. Zhou and California native Lim both happened to be 31 years old at the time. Seven years later, Lim has become a phenomenon in the market with clothes that strike a similar chord. There’s nothing tricky here, just gotta-have-it classics with an undercurrent of cool — or, as he dubs it, “a sense of madness.” Now, that cocktail of confident chic has finally arrived at Saks Fifth Avenue New York. On April 24, Lim’s debut shop-in-shop kicks off with an installation by Japanese artist Nobuhiro Nakanishi. “The pieces he created for…

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When Phillip Lim launched his 3.1 Phillip Lim line with business partner Wen Zhou back in 2005, they named it so for a rather straightforward reason, really. No lucky numbers involved, no numerology obsessions. Zhou and California native Lim both happened to be 31 years old at the time.

Seven years later, Lim has become a phenomenon in the market with clothes that strike a similar chord. There’s nothing tricky here, just gotta-have-it classics with an undercurrent of cool — or, as he dubs it, “a sense of madness.” Now, that cocktail of confident chic has finally arrived at Saks Fifth Avenue New York.

On April 24, Lim’s debut shop-in-shop kicks off with an installation by Japanese artist Nobuhiro Nakanishi. “The pieces he created for the opening are brilliant in evoking the feeling of bringing the outside inside,” Lim tells SaksPOV, “like flying a kite on a clear summer day.”

The key word here is kite. That’s the inspiration behind his oh-so-buoyant spring collection on sale, which comes complete with flyaway dresses and fluttering tops that fold into bags. “There are elements of simple geometry,” explains Lim, “like garments which, when laid flat, look like squares of fabric, but they are bought to life by nature when they are worn. They were an exploration into how multifaceted and complex simplicity can be if you let it.”

As cerebral as that sounds, there’s a sweet personal angle, too. Lim tapped into the “the innocence and freedom” of his kite-flying youth, which, at the time, seems to have come with a little freewheeling edge. “We would make kites using sticks, newspaper, string, tape and razor blades!” the designer recalls. “We would have kite wars — cutting each other in the air.” Lim was, he thinks, eight years old at the time.

3.1 Phillip Lim Runway3.1 Phillip Lim Runway3.1 Phillip Lim Runway3.1 Phillip Lim Runway3.1 Phillip Lim Runway3.1 Phillip Lim Runway
3.1 Phillip Lim Runway

MORE:

In the Gallery: Saks Fifth Avenue New York celebrates the opening of the 3.1 Phillip Lim shop with W magazine


Love It: Mosley Tribes

These Lyndel frames from Mosley Tribes are a variation on the classic Wayfarer sunglasses, an updated take on a retro silhouette. They feature a keyhole bridge and an inlay of a playful gingham-checked fabric. With polarized lenses, these shades will remove 99.99% of glare and protect your eyes from harmful UVA and UVB rays. And at $180, being in the shade is easy.

These Lyndel frames from Mosley Tribes are a variation on the classic Wayfarer sunglasses, an updated take on a retro silhouette. They feature a keyhole bridge and an inlay of a playful gingham-checked fabric. With polarized lenses, these shades will remove 99.99% of glare and protect your eyes from harmful UVA and UVB rays. And at $180, being in the shade is easy.


Thomas’ Green Thumb

Designer’ Thomas Fuch’s eco-conscious lifestyle naturally seeps into his creations as well

Thomas Fuchs, for all intents and purposes, lives and breathes art. This designer, whose Fine Arts background and colorful career catapulted him to launching his home collection at Saks, says his passion comes through in his pieces and his twist on tradition is incorporated into everything he does. And on top of that? He loves being green. “Not only am I green with my designs, I’m also eco-conscious with my personal lifestyle,” Fuchs tells SaksPOV, as he preps for Earth Day on April 22. “Traveling to different countries makes me more conscious of being green. I am constantly searching for factories that give back to their communities or are focused on recycling and eco-friendly efforts.” Alongside business partner Michou Mahtani, Fuchs developed Thomas Fuchs Creative,…

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Thomas Fuchs, for all intents and purposes, lives and breathes art. This designer, whose Fine Arts background and colorful career catapulted him to launching his home collection at Saks, says his passion comes through in his pieces and his twist on tradition is incorporated into everything he does. And on top of that? He loves being green. “Not only am I green with my designs, I’m also eco-conscious with my personal lifestyle,” Fuchs tells SaksPOV, as he preps for Earth Day on April 22. “Traveling to different countries makes me more conscious of being green. I am constantly searching for factories that give back to their communities or are focused on recycling and eco-friendly efforts.” Alongside business partner Michou Mahtani, Fuchs developed Thomas Fuchs Creative, which currently includes four distinct collections: Remains, Moderne, Candle Holders and Glasses. All collections employ traditional artistic processes, such as lost wax, glass blowing and hand carving.

Shop Thomas Fuchs Creative on Saks.com!


Fashion Star: Episode 6

Terron gives his takes on episode six of Fashion Star

The signs are unmistakable. You spend a few extra minutes in the makeup room, and a few hundred thousand dollars on a pair of pants. Days just don’t seem special if a Cirque de Soleil performer doesn’t tumble from the trapeze during a fashion show. There’s no doubt about it… I’m having a mid-show crisis. I suppose I’ll just have to get it together, commiserate with Elle and concentrate on enjoying the time we still have. It’s true what they say—the best is yet to come. Carpe Episodem. And the Surprise Episode 6 Winner Is… Kara. I know I’ve become predictable. But Kara’s sense of style really does fit well at Saks. This week’s delicately layered dress is wispy and flirtatious—perfect for a spring evening….

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The signs are unmistakable. You spend a few extra minutes in the makeup room, and a few hundred thousand dollars on a pair of pants. Days just don’t seem special if a Cirque de Soleil performer doesn’t tumble from the trapeze during a fashion show. There’s no doubt about it…

I’m having a mid-show crisis.

I suppose I’ll just have to get it together, commiserate with Elle and concentrate on enjoying the time we still have. It’s true what they say—the best is yet to come. Carpe Episodem.

And the Surprise Episode 6 Winner Is…

Kara. I know I’ve become predictable. But Kara’s sense of style really does fit well at Saks. This week’s delicately layered dress is wispy and flirtatious—perfect for a spring evening. You can find it here.

What Did You Think?

Are you dreading the end of Fashion Star weeks in advance like I am?

And did we send the right person home this week?

Let me know in the comments…

 

MORE:

Watch Online: Missed the show? Watch it online!

Terron’s Takes: Terron gives his takes for each episode of Fashion Star.

Visit us on Facebook: Meet mentors Nicole Richie, Jessica Simpson and John Varvatos — and sign up for updates.

Shop the Looks: Shop the winning styles from every episode of Fashion Star.