Off-White continues reign as world’s hottest brand

Off-White has once again been crowned the most sought-after brand in the world.The label, founded by designer Virgil Abloh in 2012, is known for its stylised streetwear-inspired items which feature the use of quotation marks, zip ties, and industrial b…

Off-White has once again been crowned the most sought-after brand in the world.

The label, founded by designer Virgil Abloh in 2012, is known for its stylised streetwear-inspired items which feature the use of quotation marks, zip ties, and industrial buckles, with celebrity fans including Bella Hadid, JAY-Z, and Nicki Minaj.

Now, analysts have compiled data from the fashion platform Lyst for the fourth quarter of 2019 and reported that Off-White has come out on top in relation to global Lyst and Google search data, conversion rates and sales, as well as social media mentions and engagement statistics worldwide. The company also topped The Lyst Index for the previous quarter.

Gucci, helmed by creative director Alessandro Michele, was the runner-up, while Balenciaga landed in third place.

Other luxury brands in the top 10 included Versace, Fendi, Prada, Valentino, and Burberry, though the most surprising leap in rankings came from Moncler.

Nabbing the fourth spot, executives at the lifestyle label have found success over the past three years by harnessing a guest designer roster, which has included capsule collections from the likes of Simone Rocha, Craig Green, and Richard Quinn.

Meanwhile, Gucci’s logo belt was once again the hottest in the list of women’s products, with Amina Muaddi’s Gilda heels taking second place.

“As seen on Kendall Jenner and Hailey Bieber, Muaddi’s Gilda heels sparked an average of 60,500 monthly searches between October and December, while the brand saw a 73 per cent rise in views,” a Lyst spokesperson commented.

Other popular accessories include Prada’s Monolith boots, a scarf from Acne Studios, Spanx’s faux leather leggings, Balenciaga’s Hourglass top handle bag, and the UGG Scuffette II slippers.

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Balenciaga returning to haute couture

Balenciaga is gearing up to reintroduce haute couture.The luxury fashion brand hasn’t produced a couture collection since label founder Cristobal Balenciaga, a master couturier and inspiration to the likes of Christian Dior and Coco Chanel, closed his …

Balenciaga is gearing up to reintroduce haute couture.

The luxury fashion brand hasn’t produced a couture collection since label founder Cristobal Balenciaga, a master couturier and inspiration to the likes of Christian Dior and Coco Chanel, closed his Paris-based atelier in 1968. Balenciaga died at the age of 77 in 1972.

However, current creative director Demna Gvasalia, who joined in 2015, announced on Monday that he will be bringing back the high-end range in July.

“Haute couture is the very foundation of this house,” the designer said in a statement. “So, it is my creative and visionary duty to bring couture back to Balenciaga. For me, couture is an unexplored mode of creative freedom and a platform for innovation. It not only offers another spectrum of possibilities in dressmaking, it also brings the modern vision of Balenciaga back to its sources of origin. Couture is above trends. It’s an expression of beauty on the highest aesthetic and qualitative levels.”

Georgia-born Gvasalia did not announce when or where he will unveil his debut couture line. Yet, it is likely to be aligned with Paris Couture Week, which takes place from 3 – 7 July.

And Cedric Charbit, president and chief executive officer of Balenciaga, is looking forward to seeing what the 38-year-old dreams up.

“It’s an honour to bring back the haute couture to the house, highlighting the heritage of Cristobal Balenciaga. This project was possible due to the success of the creative vision of Demna Gvasalia as well as the exceptional results of Balenciaga these past few years,” he shared. “Establishing a dedicated team and atelier replicating the original salons at the historical address 10 Avenue George V represents a strategic step in further expansions. Coming back to the haute couture that was left off by Cristobal Balenciaga in 1968 links the house’s past, present, and future.”

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Emma Watson and Saoirse Ronan rock all-black outfits to Little Women premiere

Emma Watson and Saoirse Ronan both opted to wear black outfits to the recent premiere of their new movie, Little Women.The Hollywood stars appear alongside Florence Pugh, Eliza Scanlen, Timothee Chalamet, Laura Dern, and Meryl Streep in director Greta …

Emma Watson and Saoirse Ronan both opted to wear black outfits to the recent premiere of their new movie, Little Women.

The Hollywood stars appear alongside Florence Pugh, Eliza Scanlen, Timothee Chalamet, Laura Dern, and Meryl Streep in director Greta Gerwig’s adaptation of the classic Louisa May Alcott novel.

Ahead of the movie’s release on 25 December, the star-studded cast gathered at the Museum of Modern Art in New York on Saturday to celebrate the world premiere of the hotly anticipated film.

Emma, who plays eldest sibling Meg March, wore a black Balenciaga silk gown with a rough lace trim and thigh-high black velvet boots, while she accessorised with a clamshell-shaped purse and Fred Leighton jewellery, including an ear cuff.

The Harry Potter star kept her brunette hair off her face in a loose bun, while she chose to keep the Gothic theme going with her full dark brows and crimson lips.

Three-time Oscar nominee Saoirse, who portrays headstrong Jo March in the movie, channelled prairie chic with her embellished high-neck Gucci dress, which featured sheer sleeves and a thigh-high split.

Meanwhile, her former Lady Bird co-star Timothee rocked an Alexander McQueen suit and Cartier bling, with Laura, who plays the March family matriarch Marmee, wowing the red carpet in a sparkling navy blue Ralph Lauren Collection crystal-embroidered gown.

Hollywood newcomer Florence, who plays youngest March sister Amy, wore an off-the-shoulder turquoise Valentino gown, teamed with drop earrings and strappy gold sandals, while Sharp Objects star Eliza, who takes on the part of studious Beth March, wore an eye-catching white Khaite gown with high neck and puffed sleeves.

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Nicolas Ghesquiere keen to become more involved in social activism

Nicolas Ghesquiere has set his sights on becoming more involved in social activism.The French fashion designer is one of the most successful names in the industry, having worked for Jean Paul Gaultier and Balenciaga before landing the coveted position …

Nicolas Ghesquiere has set his sights on becoming more involved in social activism.

The French fashion designer is one of the most successful names in the industry, having worked for Jean Paul Gaultier and Balenciaga before landing the coveted position of Louis Vuitton’s head womenswear designer in 2013.

However, in a new interview with Out magazine, in which he was named as one of the Out100 honorees, Ghesquiere explained that he wants to do more to support causes closes to his heart.

“I’m not taking the voice of someone we’d call an activist today,” he said. “But if I had more time, I would do more and more. Maybe in the future I will. But the way that I do it (now) is with the respect, the attraction, and the inspiration to showcase people like (Scottish music producer) Sophie, (transgender model) Krow, or others I work with who express this way of being. They’re people I want to stand by.”

Ghesquiere’s interview took place shortly before he hit headlines for criticising Louis Vuitton’s parent company Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton (LVMH)’s ties with Donald Trump last month, after the U.S. President attended the opening of a Louis Vuitton workshop in Alvarado, Texas. The American leader has attracted controversy in the past regarding his divisive policies relating to minority groups.

“Standing against any political action. I am a fashion designer refusing this association #trumpisajoke #homophobia,” the 48-year-old wrote on his Instagram page.

Elsewhere in the Out discussion, the openly gay Ghesquiere spoke about how his sexuality has informed his creative process.

“The sense that being gay gives me, it’s an asset for being inspired. Maybe it’s sometimes pushing my own limits – the limits I could have just for being gay – or maybe it’s making my imagination go forward, to another territory that belongs to fantasy, to freedom,” he shared. “I think it has an influence in the way I design where, sometimes, pragmatism and function can have a limit.”

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Off-White tops The Lyst Index’s rankings of hottest brands

Off-White has been crowned as the hottest brand in the world in The Lyst Index’s latest rankings.The label, founded by designer Virgil Abloh in 2012, is known for its stylised streetwear-inspired items which feature the use of quotation marks, zip ties…

Off-White has been crowned as the hottest brand in the world in The Lyst Index’s latest rankings.

The label, founded by designer Virgil Abloh in 2012, is known for its stylised streetwear-inspired items which feature the use of quotation marks, zip ties, and industrial buckles, with celebrity fans including Kendall Jenner, Bella Hadid, Hailey Bieber, JAY-Z, Nicki Minaj, and Rihanna.

Now, researchers have compiled data from the fashion platform Lyst for the third quarter of 2019 and claimed Off-White has come out on top in relation to global Lyst and Google search data, conversion rates and sales, as well as brand and product social media mentions and engagement statistics worldwide.

Balenciaga, helmed by creative director Demna Gvasalia, was the runner-up, while Gucci fell back two spots in comparison to last quarter and landed in third place.

Other luxury brands in the top 10 included Versace, Prada, Valentino, Fendi, Burberry, Saint Laurent, and Vetements, while notable additions to the top 20 this quarter were Bottega Veneta and Loewe.

Since Daniel Lee joined Bottega Veneta in June 2018, the Italian fashion house has undergone a huge revamp, with the designer winning acclaim for his minimalist designs and Stretch sandals, which immediately sold out upon release following the launch of the label’s pre-fall 2019 collection.

“Daniel Lee has brought incredible energy to the evolution of Bottega Veneta and the reaction has been extraordinary,” Dario Gargiulo, chief marketing officer of Bottega Veneta, said of the brand’s transformation. “Free from any desire to become the hottest brand in the world, our focus is on the beauty and power of subtlety. We forego extensive explanation about our brand in favour of simply being visible and present across the current multicultural landscape.”

Among the most popular products were Bottega Veneta’s padded sandals, Adidas Continental 80 sneakers, Jacquemus’ pocket-sized Le Chiquito bag, Paco Rabanne’s reissued 1969 metal shoulder bag, Fendi’s FF motif bikini, and Mansur Gavriel’s cloud print sweater.

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Michael Kors will never have a muse

Michael Kors will never rely on a single “muse” for inspiration.The American fashion designer has never designed pieces with just one woman in mind, unlike the late Karl Lagerfeld, who had many muses including Vanessa Paradis, Claudia Schiffer, and Car…

Michael Kors will never rely on a single “muse” for inspiration.

The American fashion designer has never designed pieces with just one woman in mind, unlike the late Karl Lagerfeld, who had many muses including Vanessa Paradis, Claudia Schiffer, and Cara Delevingne.

“To this day, the question I hate the most is when people say, ‘Who’s your muse?’ And I say, ‘Muse? If I’m only designing for one woman, then we’re in trouble,'” he told Harper’s Bazaar.

And Kors attributes his successful, decades-long career to growing up in a family of strong, fashion-forward women in Long Island.

“They were all very specific in their point of view, they were all very opinionated,” the 60-year-old said, before recalling an argument his mother – former model Joan Hamburger – once had with her sister-in-law “over whether taupe or camel was a better colour for a winter coat”.

Kors also revealed that he helped to redesign his mother’s dress for her second wedding when he was just five years old.

“My grandmother was with us at the bridal salon, and my mother had ordered her dress, and was having the first fitting. It was floor-length, heavy cream shantung, very Balenciaga, and covered in bows. When my mother tried it on, I just went silent. My mother asked, ‘What’s wrong? and I said, ‘Those bows are so terrible!'” he laughed.

The designer, whose chic dresses were even worn by former U.S. First Lady Michelle Obama, wants to create clothes for women of all sizes and ages.

“My aim is to make women feel their best selves,” Kors shared. “She could be 85, she could be 16; she could be a size 22 or a size four.”

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Demna Gvasalia departing Vetements

Demna Gvasalia is stepping down from Vetements “to pursue new ventures”.The Georgian designer, who co-founded the Zurich-based fashion house with his brother Guram Gvasalia in 2014, announced the news in a statement to WWD over the weekend. “I started …

Demna Gvasalia is stepping down from Vetements “to pursue new ventures”.

The Georgian designer, who co-founded the Zurich-based fashion house with his brother Guram Gvasalia in 2014, announced the news in a statement to WWD over the weekend.

“I started Vetements because I was bored of fashion and against all odds, fashion did change once and forever since Vetements appeared and it also opened a new door for so many,” Demna stated to the fashion publication. “So, I feel that I have accomplished my mission of a conceptualist and design innovator at this exceptional brand and Vetements has matured into a company that can evolve its creative heritage into a new chapter on its own.”

The 38-year-old will continue in his role as creative director of Balenciaga. He is scheduled to unveil his spring 2020 show for the luxury label as part of Paris Fashion Week on 29 September.

“Vetements has always been a collective of creative minds. We will continue to push the boundaries even further, respecting codes and the authentic values of the brand, and keep on supporting honest creativity and genuine talent,” Guram, who is the chief executive of Vetements, added. “We are very grateful to Demna for having contributed to the great momentum of the house.”

The brothers’ statement also hinted at additional projects for Demna, who will be exiting Vetements “to pursue new ventures”.

Previously, Demna served as a senior designer at Louis Vuitton, working with Marc Jacobs and then briefly under Nicolas Ghesquiere.

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Natacha Ramsay-Levi views Chloe brand as a ‘community’

Natacha Ramsay-Levi sees the Chloe brand as a “community” women want to be part of.The French designer succeeded Clare Waight Keller as creative director of the luxury label in March 2017, having previously held positions at Balenciaga and Louis Vuitto…

Natacha Ramsay-Levi sees the Chloe brand as a “community” women want to be part of.

The French designer succeeded Clare Waight Keller as creative director of the luxury label in March 2017, having previously held positions at Balenciaga and Louis Vuitton.

Ramsay-Levi continues to stay true to her boho-chic aesthetic and use of retro prints, and has now shared that she has women at the forefront of her mind at all times.

“Chloe is the one brand that talks about femininity,” she said in an interview with U.S. InStyle magazine. “That, for me, is something between very natural and very strong. I see Chloe as being a community that women want to be a part of and clothes that relate to your own identity.”

For Ramsay-Levi’s debut spring/summer 2018 collection, she paid homage to previous Chloe designers, including brand founder Gaby Aghion, as well as Waight Keller, Phoebe Philo, and Karl Lagerfeld. Yet, the fashion star is adamant she is committed to carving out her own signature designs for the company and not merely imitating those who came before her.

“It’s not like I’m transforming myself to design for Chloe, because it’s a house I’ve always felt connected to,” the 39-year-old insisted. “I am trying my best to pay homage and show my love, which is very sincere. It’s my first creative direction, and I could not have done it another way.”

In addition to her main line, Ramsay-Levi recently unveiled a capsule collection with Gwyneth Paltrow’s Goop brand. The range is comprised of exclusive accessories and an edit of Chloe’s summer range, with items priced between $850 and $3,250 (£667 – £2,550).

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Jennifer Lopez’s costume designer always ensures she ‘shines like a diamond’

Jennifer Lopez’s longtime stylist Rob Zangardi is determined for her to shine “like a diamond” during the It’s My Party tour.Jennifer kicked off her gigs in Los Angeles at the beginning of June and will be ending her trek in Russia on 11 August. Rob pi…

Jennifer Lopez’s longtime stylist Rob Zangardi is determined for her to shine “like a diamond” during the It’s My Party tour.

Jennifer kicked off her gigs in Los Angeles at the beginning of June and will be ending her trek in Russia on 11 August.

Rob pieced together the 19 costumes the On the Floor hitmaker wears during the show, as well as the 176 outfits for her dancers.

“Sparkle is incredibly effective for a big show like Jennifer’s,” Rob explained to The Hollywood Reporter. “On stage, things translate so differently. When you have an intimate setting or a smaller venue, it’s important to see the artist’s face, what they’re doing and not distract too much with the costumes. But when you’re performing for 20,000 people in an arena, the people way in the back need to see you and nothing’s more exciting than seeing J.Lo shining like a diamond onstage.

“And that’s a J.Lo staple. Jennifer has always loved the sparkle, the jewellery and the more-is-more mentality – for everything that she does.”

Explaining how involved Jennifer is when it comes to her stage costumes, Rob shared that together they put together mood boards based on the 49-year-old star’s idea for each section with colour palettes and an overall vibe.

The next stage saw Rob reach out to the designers who suit the different ideas. Versace, Guess, Zuhair Murad, Giambattista Valli, Balenciaga and Marchesa are among the big-name fashion houses who contributed to Jennifer’s tour wardrobe.

“(We approach designers) who we have relationships with or who Jennifer wants to make sure are in the show. One of them always is Versace, so we’ll reach out to their team and give them the concept,” Rob added.

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Cate Blanchett: ‘True chic is effortless’

Cate Blanchett has praised Giorgio Armani for teaching her how to appear effortlessly chic. The Oscar-winning actress is a lover of fashion, and dazzles on the red carpet with pieces from the likes of Balenciaga, Valentino, Alexander McQueen, Christop…

Cate Blanchett has praised Giorgio Armani for teaching her how to appear effortlessly chic.

The Oscar-winning actress is a lover of fashion, and dazzles on the red carpet with pieces from the likes of Balenciaga, Valentino, Alexander McQueen, Christopher Kane, Armani and Givenchy.

But it was her friendship with the 84-year-old Italian designer that prompted Blanchett to rethink her relationship with fashion.

“It should never be work. That’s something I learned from Mr. Armani. True chic is effortless, and it’s got to come from you,” she told InStyle.

And the Australian star is a big fan of rewearing clothes she’s worn in the past and doesn’t indulge in fast-fashion.

“It’s not what gets likes and views. So, yeah, I mean, I love fashion, I love costumes, and I’m also a great lover of rewearing things I’ve loved in the past,” the 50-year-old explained. “I would say my go-to is pretty much a well-pressed suit. Or a good pair of trousers.”

Blanchett has also mastered the fine art of applying make-up in a moving vehicle, and prefers a durable compact foundation, rather than liquid. Most days, she simply wears a touch of foundation, mascara and lipstick, and as the face of Giorgio Armani’s new perfume, Si Fiori, she always ensures to dab on some fragrance before stepping out.

However, when quizzed on her favourite smell, the mother-of-four had a very touching answer.

“It’s boring, but newborn babies. They’re just delicious. And so full of possibilities,” she gushed.

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