Tuesday, 30 November 2010

Cy Choi-The Fashion Show

For their Spring/Summer 11 Koren label Cy Choi have opted for a fashion film to showcase their new collection. Depicted using a multitude of still images, the stop-animation details an artificial catwalk show. Shot artfully in black and white, the film captures the sombre models as if they were cut-outs from an academia book, carefully positioned and repositioned courtesy of an unknown runway Svengali to the thumping yet an almost haunting soundtrack.

The film itself is a perfectly stylized reflection of the collection. Clean and comprising mainly of formal wear, the collection is a neutral haze of structured silhouettes tailored with fine detailing. The collection shall be released early next year.

Until then, click here to check out the Lookbook.

Burberry Opens Burberry Brit Store in Milan

Burberry Brit has finally landed in Milan, the very first in Europe. Located at the Corso Venezia, the 250 square metre store, which opened last November 27, reflects the new design concept developed by Burberry Chief Creative Officer Christopher Bailey. A contemporary vision that sees a modern and innovative take on British materials and themes, the store features flat screen LED video walls showcasing Burberry digital contents as well as touch-screen in-store technology. The new store will stock collections from Burberry Brit, Burberry Sport and Burberry Accessories.

Check it out now at Corso Venezia 9, 20121 Milan, Italy

Words By Rolly Ibanez

7th Man Suggests You Start Reading!

To launch the amazing new book by Hywel Davies, Fashion Designer’s Sketchbooks, the exceptional fashion writer and journalist is collaborating with the Design Museum and Sketchbook magazine by hosting a night of live fashion events, drawing, talks and interactive Vjing projection.

The event which relates to the museum's current Drawing Fashion exhibition and is part of The Design Museum's 'Design Overtime' series, will welcome fashion designers Richard Nicoll, Fred Butler, Bora Aksu and Amy Moleyaux from PPQ , in informal 30 minute discussions with Hywel Davies covering topics from design inspiration to problems faced by fashion designers and the current retail industry.

In addition workshops will be available for all those interested in learning the fundamentals of fashion sketching, illustration and fast drawing under the supervision and guidance of accomplished professionals Gabriela Mot, Tomomi McMaster and Stephen Stone.
On Friday 3rd of December, from 6-10 pm at the Design Museum.

If you are interested have a look on the Design Museum’s website for further information.

Words By Andreas Menelaou

Monday, 29 November 2010

Interview: Wouter Baartmans of Baartmans And Siegel

As the latest export of the London College of Fashion's prestigious MA Fashion Design & Technology Course, Wouter Baartmans has a bright future in store. Having wowed the fashion industry with his luxurious final collection entitled Moonshining Werewolves, Baartmans has now coupled his unique design talents with Amber Siegel, a fellow LCF alum. Having met during a stint at Viktor & Rolf, the pair's shared passion for beautiful craftsmanship and imaginative design has led them to create the united label of Baartmans and Siegel. Synonymous with interesting details and menacing masculinity, the brand is fast becoming one to watch, especially as their new latest collection becomes a firm favourite in Harrods this season.

You grew up in Holland. What was it like growing up there?

Amsterdam feels like a close community which is both stimulating and calming. While I enjoyed growing-up there, after university I found it slightly limiting and longed for a wider and more international landscape.

How does the fashion scene there differ to that of London?

Amsterdam has strong links with the German and Belgian design scene,
Holland has many design schools and is very supportive of the arts, and is rather liberal in its culture. Fashion labels such as Viktor and Rolf, Dries Van Noten and Ann Demeulemeester have established certain distinctive design philosophies which are all rooted in Dutch and Belgian culture. Effective, striking design, rooted in practicality and innovation, combined with mixed cultural references. Having studied and interning in Amsterdam and Antwerp, and then studying in London, I felt connected to the practicality aspects of my Dutch design training.

What attracted you to the LCF MA course?

London continues to have the reputation of being the epicentre of contemporary design training. London is renowned for its experimental, yet historic and traditional teaching. The London College of Fashion MA’s technical discipline was appealing, as I had always been drawn to strong tailoring and understanding the internal elements, the course allowed me to explore this base of technicality, and then evolve upon this. The course also allowed us the opportunity and exposure to work in conjunction with industry, this I found extremely beneficial and enjoyable.

Your final collection for LCF -Moonshining Werewolves- was inspired by the great depression in the 1920s and the emergence of new cinema. Did you watch a lot of film from this era to gather inspiration?

I have always found early American cinema stimulating and a source to which I can draw characters from. In particular the Grapes of Wrath and its depiction of the Great Depression and the dust bowl, peoples striving to survive and the changing of human character. In addition to dramas, i found early horror cinema exciting, with the emergence of cult classics such as Wolfman, as well as looking at journalistic photographers of the time, depicting cinematic –like images of New York in the 1930s, such as Weegie.

What sort of man would you see wearing this collection?

The collection holds a sense of dominating masculinity which is adaptable to the wearer. Through using interactive, tactile fabrics, the collection focuses on building a relationship with the wearer. The collection is focused on a contemporary, discerning individual, who chooses pieces that interact with their existing wardrobe, and is designed to enhance the best elements of their existing self.

You are currently one of half of design duo Baartmans and Siegel. What made you decide to create a collaborative label as opposed to going it alone?

We first met in a work/ design environment, and then continued to graduate, so we have always worked together in some form, it's all we have ever known. It seemed a natural progression to continue to work together after graduation, and build on our joint vision. Our whole design ethos revolves around creating products that heighten the best qualities of the wearer. We seem to have a magpie-like quality that instantaneously draws us to an aesthetic of heightened luxury.

How does your design process differ now you’re working as a team?

While strong individually, we have always enjoyed working as a duo, bouncing ideas and generating solutions jointly, it has always felt like we were two components, of one machine mind. We learn as we go along, and are fortunate to have the support of many leading names in the industry. We share the work of most aspects of our brand rather equally, but we try not to only stay in our comfort zones, and push each other to grow in areas we might feel slightly shy in. We enjoy the successes and the challenges.

What is the design philosophy behind the Spring/Summer 11 Baartmans and Siegel collection?

While we work with classic masculinity, we also like to experiment with a tactile aspect to our garments, using natural fabrics such as cashmere, wools silks and cotton. We engineer shapes that are accessible yet distinctive, with subtle, yet confident silhouettes.

The upcoming spring/summer 2011 collection ‘Vingt mille lieues sous les mers’ (twenty-thousand leagues under the sea) follows this concept. In this collection, we were exploring the Jules Verne aquatic sci-fi adventure novels, which capture an element of travel, action and excitement. We were inspired by his fictitious worlds and male characters; elements from the novel have been directly translated thought our colour palette and tones, aquatic shades, as well as textural reference through fabrications.

Silk print scarves convey the murky, inky depths and fluidity of the novel. Hand knitted wool jumpers with inverted wave patterns, subtly nod to the novel as do textured velvets, flecked, crinkled cottons and powder blue cashmere shirtings. The heavy use of textured and woven silks adds luxury and depth. All the pieces are extremely accessible and wearable; they’re also very much interchangeable, allowing the wearer more freedom.

Similar to last season, the duo’s autumn/winter 2011/12 collection which they are currently designing will be shown on Men’s Day at London Fashion Week . The collection draws from cubist shapes and structures, initially looking at fabrication construction, then placing these structures in a futuristic city environment. While still wearable and masculine, the collection builds on domineering silhouettes and layering, mainly expressed through earthy tones of greens, browns, greys and blacks. We continue to work in conjunction with Grenson, the renowned bespoke English shoemakers.

Where do you hope to see the future of the label?

For the past two seasons we have been sold exclusively in Harrods, we are expanding our retail points for Autumn/Winter 2011 and look forward to expanding our international recognition. Baartmans And Siegel is fast becoming recognisable by the use of interactive texture and sharp tailoring. We would describe ourselves as modern- traditionalists who’s work focuses on beautiful fabrics that seduce, and shapes that are accessible yet distinctive. While our work subscribes to traditional elements of English heritage tailoring, we combine these aspects with modern luxury. The menswear market has seen a shift, with more discerning and brand educated consumers, we try to feed a corner of the market that appreciates beautiful fabrics, and finishes.

TUMI- Making Hectic Life A Hell Of A Lot Easier

TUMI, the international premium brand known for its business and travel accessories can now add technology innovator under its resume. Launching a range of portable electronics, the brand is moving into easy to carry digital gadgets that can make your life a lot easier. Showing they understand how technology is now an integral component of their clients’ lifestyle, TUMI created an assortment for the 2010 collection which includes a travel speaker, a portable projector, travel workout player and SD card reader with 4GB memory.

Gearing up for your business trip without having to think twice if you’ll have somewhere to store new data or how you’ll follow through on that exercise regime, the new accessories offer the best of both worlds as they fit the comforts of daily life to your going away schedule.
Ranging from £40 to £385 you will stay connected, charged and plugged in wherever you are!!

Words By Andreas Menelaou

7th Man Exclusive: Far And Away

Check out the new 7th Man photo story over on the Exclusives page now!

The New Kid

Whilst he didn't know how to sew before going to university, Domingo Rodriguez is embarking on an exciting and exclusive partnership with ASOS.com in one of his first commercial projects.

A graduate of Liverpool John Moores university in 2008 and former student at London College of Fashion, Rodriguez has fast become one of London's most desirable designers who mixes architectural sillouettes and luxury. His success as a young designer has seen him secure the Harold Tilman Scholarship, which is organised by its namesake, the chairman of the British Fashion Council and the winner of the inaugural Wolf and Badger Graduate Design Award.

The former intern for Delphine Wilson Kntwear, Kim Jones and Carolyn Massey, Rodriguez was chosen by ASOS.com for the MA}ke initiative, organised by the e-retailer and the London College of Fashion which supports MA graduates, which will go on sale this week. Chosen alongside a womenswear designer, Youngli Lee, his collection is an impressive mix of soft cut lines and sharp tailoring constructed using luxurious fabrics and a refined pallet of nudes and neutrals. The simplicity of the collection is a great addition to the site but also gives Rodriguez the recognition he deserves into the commercial mainstream, eventually, hopefully, making him a household name in the near future.

Words by Dan Hasby Oliver

Images courtesy of ASOS.com/Facebook

Saturday, 27 November 2010

Nick Knight and Imran Amed: The Interview

Last night, The Hospital Club near Covent Garden played host to an intimate talk between one of the fashion industry's most influential photographers, Nick Knight and editor of esteemed website The Business of Fashion, Imran Amed.

Commencing with a video intro depicting the power and influence of Knight's SHOWstudio over the past ten years, the informative short led into Knight and Amed striding into the starkly lit studio before taking their seats. Honest and forthright, Knight proved an excellent interviewee, one who spoke eloquently and articulated lengthy answers that were not only intelligent but thoroughly interesting.

"I took up arts to prove something to myself", claimed Knight when discussing how he dismissed a career in medicine in favour of photography. " Ever since I started photography, I wanted to change it. I was super arrogant". Arrogant he may have been, but it was this combined with an unyielding passion for his trade that led him to create some of the fashion world's most revolutionary images.

Of his iconic photo Susie Smoking, Knight claimed it was a difficult process to achieve such a stunning shot, one that took nearly five days to capture. Of course, this photograph was taken back in the eighties-long before the ease of digital image creating and manipulation was available. Indeed when it comes to new media- Knight was consistently at the forefront of embracing it.

To Knight, he believes fashion should be showcased not by flat images but to be revealed in all their visual glory, hence Knight's constant championing of fashion film. In the early days, Knight would position a camcorder on the set of his photoshoots and subtly record proceedings. The idea was not to "lift the veil" of the fashion industry as it were, but to show just how beautiful and incredible the fashion world really is in Knight's eyes.

SHOWstudio initially began as idea Knight had to send out monthly VHS' of fashion film. The plan never materialized and instead Knight took to the fledgling internet as one of the first interactive sites of this kind and has been building on it ever since.

In fact, last night was a thoroughly interactive affair, with the interview being streamed live on both the SHOWstudio and The Business of Fashion websites, as well as numerous fashion blog affiliates world-over. What's more, on the screens on either side of Knight and Amed displayed constant Twitter updates on the event, including additional questions to propose to Knight.

As the interview came to a close with Knight citing a multitude of home-truths about the fashion industry, ('Fashion is so frustratingly narrow when it comes to the parameters of accepted beauty. You have to have alternatives") Amed then questioned Knight on his thoughts regarding the future of fashion photography.

"Fashion has been supported by print for the past eighty, hundred years. Now it's being supported by a new medium. Photography is dead." Presented with the idea of 3D scanning, whereby there would be devices that would allow us to download a jumper and then "print" it out, Knight claims technology is going there, if not already in place. We just have to embrace it. As one of the industry greatest pioneers of new media and fashion, SHOWstudio most certainly shall be on the case.

Today marks the tenth anniversary of SHOWstudio and having reinterpreted the way in which the masses view fashion over the past decade, the website shall no doubt continue in this vein in the exciting years to come.

Friday, 26 November 2010

ALICE By Temperley Party at Paradise

Last night the 7th Man team attended the first birthday celebrations of ALICE by Temperley, which was a star-studded affair at West London's Paradise club. The theme was English Eccentric and saw celebrities such a Nick Grimshaw and Edith Bowman hit the dance floor as Daisy Lowe and Ellie Goulding took to the DJ decks. As guests poured into the lavish venue, the quirky English twist was out in force as fashionable twenty-somethings sported looks ranging from Faux-Fur head-pieces to Union Jack ensembles. Highlights of the evening included some very enthusiastic dancing and some questionable singing courtesy of the karaoke room!

A huge thank you to everyone at Starworks for throwing a great night.

Comme des Garcon holiday exclusive at Dover Street Market

7th Man Magazine was one of the first to preview the new colourful Comme des Garcon 2010 holiday campaign that was launched at Dover Street Market in London today.

As the temperature plummets and we approach the depths of winter where most of the store seem to only stock clothing in sombre monochrome or sparking partywear, it was great to see the explosion of colours and fun quirky items at the renowned London high fashion fashion destination store.

For this latest campaign called "Merry Happy Crazy Colour", Comme des Garcon was inspired by the work of "assume vivid astro focus" (avaf). a visual and performance artist group originally based in Mexico.
This holiday collection consists of various limited edition products in all kinds of mad bright colours, designed and curated by Comme des Garcons - a total of over 16 totally different products are available in this range, each comes in an myriad of different bright colours which will make the most perfect gifts for this festive season.

These products include signature Comme des Garcons pieces in vibrant crazy colours such as the teddy bears in the bright polka dot fabrics, the new perfume contained in a hand made papier mache covered bottles, multicoloured patchwork knits and PLAY T-shirts as well as the green, pink, and yellow cotton shirts and matching sarouels.

Other curated pieces from around the world includes resin jewellery from Thai designer Ek Thongprasert, men's heavy metal chain necklaces from Florian of Austria, a lego block ornament from New York's Nathan Sawaya.

Each item has a hang tag showing the work of avaf, and comes wrapped in a carrier bag featuring the same artwork which comes in pink, blue or yellow.

Today Comme des Garcon also premiered their latest "Super Fluo" wallets at Dover Street Market today. Although not a part of the "Merry Happy Crazy Colour" collection, but with its super bright pieces made in the softest goat leather, it would sit beautifully with the rest of the quirky rainbow coloured items displayed in the various different parts of the store.
.... the real question is..... how did they get that massive white elephant into the shop window at 5am this morning???

The Merry Happy Crazy Colour collection is available till end of January 2011.

Thursday, 25 November 2010

Penfield x Rag & Bone “Mallory” jacket!

Getting a heritage brand together with a fashion forward designer is not exactly news-flash material but manage to team-up an iconic outdoor apparel brand with a British duo, hot on the heels of being awarded their second CFDA(Council for Fashion Designers of America) award for Menswear Designers of the year and you got yourself a front-page cover.

This is not the first time Penfield has collaborated with the boys of Rag&Bone. For A/W 10 they’ve worked their magic on the goose-down insulated jacket from their Trailwear Collection and now the denim extraordinaire designers have used the classic Rockford silhouette to create the ‘Mallory’ down jacket.

Available in black and khaki with contrast corduroy shoulder yoke & brown plaid lining, the jacket reflects the distinctive rugged aesthetic of both brands and will be available in stores, late November. For those interested the jacket retails for 650 euro and will be available at all Rag & Bone boutiques, Colette Paris, Harrods in London as well as on-line at super brand store Oki-Ni.

Words by Andreas Menelaou

Rapha +Paul Smith: The Interview

Filmed this month within the threshold of Paul Smith's HQ, the man himself speaks exclusively to Rapha founder and CEO Simon Mottram about his love for cycling in this engaging short film. Depicting a revealing portrait of one man's enduring passion for the sport, Sir Paul reminisces about his youth where days were spent soaking up the adventures of his cycling heroes on the pages of "exotic" newspaper L'Equipe, while his father looked on in utter bemusement.

As the conversation proceeds, the pair soon turn to a discussion about the changing nature of the sport and the pros and cons of following cycling in the internet age. Rounding off with Smith expressing how he enjoys a special relationship with some of today's elite riders, he furthermore reveals the pleasures of watching the Giro d'Italia at his local bike shop in Italy.

To see the Rapha and Paul Smith Collection, Click Here.

Wednesday, 24 November 2010

Breakfast At The Barbers

Today, 7th Man had the pleasure of attending an exclusive press breakfast at Joe and Co. based in the heart of London's Soho. Joe Mills, the man behind the renowned salon The Lounge Soho, launched his new enterprise a mere six weeks ago and already has attracted a vast clientele to his books. "With the success of The Lounge Soho behind me, it became a dream to open a unique modern Barbershop as an alternative to the stuffy, mahogany clad Mayfair establishments", says Joe of his flourishing new business. Indeed with a stylish, contemporary interior, Joe and Co. is refreshing take on the classic barbershops of late.

Designed by London based studio Hyperkit, the interiors were built on a collaged aesthetic which incorporates a combination of materials and textures being used in a straight-forward and fully-functional manner. The result is a stylized affair of contemporary English Oak shelving laden with luxurious grooming products from D.R. Harris, carefully considered bespoke furniture lining the floor and a chic colour scheme of blue, yellow and white that is a modern reinterpretation of the classic red and white candy striped pole of old-school barbershops.

"I really wanted to combine the nostalgia of the barbershop with a current twist and to offer services that men still like to experience", explains Joe before adding "I want to provide this in a much more relaxed environment, performed by stylists with the highest level of training". Indeed with a hand-picked team of specialist men's hair stylists poised and ready with their clippers on hand, customers are invited to sit back and relax as the team get to work on whatever treatment you might require, be it a simple haircut or a traditional wet shave.

For more information, or to book an appointment, Click Here.

Time To Click

BOSS Watches are known for the affiliation with sporting icons, most notably with Britain's most influential yachtsman, Alex Thomson. Furthering their association with sport, BOSS Watches have combined the art of photography with their love of a fast moving industry and launched a unique photography competition in partnership with the The Independent entitled Time To Click.

Offering aspiring photographers the opportunity to show off their artistic skills, the competition asks entrants to capture a winning sporting moment for a chance to win an exclusive set of gifts including a BOSS watch, a £500 shopping trip and personal tuition with a professional photographer.

The overall winner will be announced at the end of December, but in the run up to the closing date, The Independent sports desk will pick their top five every two weeks. Not only can you view the hopeful entries on the specially designed BOSS platform but the Independent have also set up a gallery of the top thirty iconic moments in the sporting world to give you inspiration and creative insight.

The concept is simple and with such exceptional prizes on offer, this is not a competition you want to miss.

For more, Click Here.

Tuesday, 23 November 2010

Candid Candies

Pop-Up stores, temporary retail outlets that open in random locations, are not new. Pop-Up galleries, however, are. The latest to open is the Flash Projects inaugural space that opens on Thursday (25th November) exhibiting Canned Candies: The Nudes of Jean Clemmer.
The visionary and in hindsight, modern, images explore fantasy, sensuality and haute couture in 1960s Paris and included the iconic collaboration between Clemmer and designer Paco Rabanne from 1969.

This is also a celebratory exhibit, staged to commemorate the 50th anniversary of Canned Candies which was first published in Paris in 1969 under the name Nues, meaning naked. Yet this is the first time in which the UK has hosted an original collaboration between the two legendary names in French artistic and fashion culture plus a wider range of Clemmer's female form studies.

And whilst this exhibit is an event in itself, it coincides with the London Fashion in Film Festival for which the involvement of Rabanne's famed futuristic rhodoid and era fits perfectly. This iconic period explores the Utopian dreams, and dare say hopes, of an aluminum chain-mail realm of science fiction and fantasy. These were styled and captured by Clemmer using nude models 'dressed' in Rabanne's then unwearable fashions which depicted and epitomised the growing freedom of sexuality of the 1960s and it's height in 1969.

The publication Canned Candies was a groundbreaking piece of photographic journalism, using black and Asian models, unheard of across the industry at the time. It was originally launched at the iconic Crazy Horse Saloon in Paris with a flourish of naked dancers and an abundance of cocktails which caused an immediate scandal against morals and sensation.

Clemmer was a photographer who captured the essence of a lost era; the sensuality, the spectacle and the pleasure of human form when the time was about sexual freedom and gratification. This is a must see exhibition, not only to see two of the biggest names in French and contemporary culture, but to see how a woman captures a form traditionally taken by a man.

For further information and to see more images by other photographers, Click Here.

Need I ask where you will be this weekend?

No -
We'll see you in the queue,

Monday, 22 November 2010

Burberry Reaches 3 Million Facebook Fans

This week, Burberry made history as it became the first luxury fashion brand to reach 3 million fans on social networking site Facebook. Thoroughly engaging with social media devices between its 'Art of the Trench' photography installation and its new online bespoke service, the quintessential British brand's latest accolade is well and truly deserved. It took the company one year to reach a million fans, six months to reach two million and mere month to reach three million.

In honor of the momentous occasion, Burberry's Creative Designer Christopher Bailey created the above image in celebration which reads: "Thank you so much for all your support!! Best wishes from us all at Burberry".

Joanna Shields, VP of Facebook EMA, said: "Burberry is producing its own original content, in fact Burberry is no longer just a fashion company - today they are a thriving media enterprise. Burberry is now the most widely followed fashion brand on Facebook. It's successful not just because it makes great clothes but because it understands the importance of sparking interest in the community and using social media to engage and delight their consumers. Whether it is relating to consumers by promoting indie bands on their Facebook Page or celebrating the ideas of the most stylish customers on their site, The Art of the Trench - Burberry is building its brand not simply by broadcasting and advertising to them, but by creating new media experiences for them."