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Sheffield sees Bowie, Bolan, Bush and Reed on one stage

Cracked Actors at Queens Road Social Club

Not the real thing, of course, but Cracked Actors is an evening devoted to the four stars at Queens Road Social Club.

Jennie Swift of Sheffield-based Black Box Productions said: “Cracked Actors is a tribute to four legends and icons, David Bowie, Marc Bolan, Kate Bush and Lou Reed.

“We’ve chosen them because they’ve collaborated in the past together and also because they’ve had such an impact on culture, art, fashion and music.”

Jennie is quick to point out that this isn’t a typical tribute show, with acts attempting to emulate their idols, although a live band will perform some of their greatest hits, accompanied by dancers.

The performers include singer Rob Benson. He was asked by T-Rex conga player Mickey Finn to step into Marc Bolan’s shoes following his death and continued with the band for 15 years.

He is also known for replicating the voice of David Bowie and will be performing as both singers.

Drummer Bobby Arechiga has performed with David Bowie’s Spiders from Mars bassist Trevor Bolder as well as Ronnie James Dio of Dio and Black Sabbath, John Parr, Strongheart and Sheffield’s own Frank White.

Guitarist John Slater teamed up with ex-Iron Maiden singer, Blaze Bayley following his departure from the band in the late 1990s.

He produced four albums and toured extensively over five years, sharing the stage with such bands as Slayer, Saxon, Symphony X, Helloween and Manowar, plus Rob Halford of Judas Priest and Zakk Wylde.

Sheffield-based Paris Phipps is performing as Lou Reed and Chesterfield-based musical theatre performer Marilyn Miller is appearing as Kate Bush.

Each of the four stars will be represented by about seven of their biggest hits.

Black Box are collaborating with Rotherham college for the show and students are designing make-up and costumes.

If the event goes well it may well be repeated, possibly in Chesterfield, said Jennie. “The band and dancers have been spending hours rehearsing. It would be a shame for it to just be a one-off.”

Black Box put on a range of events, including the Berlin Diary burlesque night. Their ethos is for the audience to join in so they are encouraging everyone to go glam for the evening.Read more

04:26 Publié dans fashion | Lien permanent | Commentaires (0)


Saint Laurent, Leonard, Hermès and Sonia Rykiel

Highlights from Paris’s Fashion Week.

1. Saint Laurent: Punk Goes to the Prom


Now that Saint Laurent has announced that its revenues doubled in the past year, the fashion purists’ grumbles are growing weaker, but getting grumpier, at the brand’s show on Monday evening in Paris. There’s a vast segment of fashion-goers who see the brand—once known as Yves Saint Laurent—as a sacred haute couture label. They hate to see it producing punk-party dresses worn over ripped fishnet stockings and pert booties.

Designer Hedi Slimane has delved deep into Mr. Saint Laurent’s drug-tormented period of around 1970—the Rive Gauche years—for the ethos that drives this label. Updated to 2015, it’s about frothy debauched pink prom dresses and black leather rock-n-roll mini dresses that start out too short and pile on a high slit. No one wants their daughter to be a Saint Laurent girl.

Also, though, no one should fail to see the masterful merchandising that tells the story of how this label doubled those revenues: There’s an archly tailored gray jacket slung over that pink prom frock and a whole string of skinny black suits that are tailored within an inch of their lives. Not to mention all those black leather handbags hanging from the show guests’ shoulders. —Christina Binkley

2. Leonard: Heavy Hitter


French label Leonard Paris stepped away from more than 50 years of tradition, showing a collection of heavy, structured garments that shocked many viewers.

The house, whose original slogan was “150 grams of happiness” in reference to its lightweight jersey dresses, showed almost none of its well-known bright flowery prints. Instead, animal patterns and other more subtle prints took the lead.

The change comes a year after the arrival of Chinese-born designer Yiqing Yin to the position of creative director. At Monday’s runway, guests could be heard muttering their astonishment at the change in the brand’s aesthetics.

Leonard’s founder Daniel Tribouillard admitted that it was a “total breakaway from what Leonard is.” Speaking after the show, he said it was the new designer’s desire to work with heavier fabrics. “I’m happy with the renewal, if it makes itself felt on the business side,” Mr. Tribouillard said. —Nadya Masidlover

3. Hermès: Suede Perfection

Hermès takes its ready to wear too seriously. We can’t blame the designers. Designer after designer, the French perfectionist brand’s clothes lack the vivacious humor of its fantastic scarves, and often its jewelry, dishes, umbrellas, table clothes and other sundry luxury goods. They are, though, lovely and made of the world’s best suede, leather, silk, wool and other materials.

Hermès installed a new designer this season: Nadège Vanhee-Cybulski, who has worked previously at the Row. (The Row is another label whose clothes are lovely and luxurious and utterly timeless.) At Hermès, she replaced Christophe Lemaire, who four years earlier replaced Jean-Paul Gaultier —a humorist designer if ever there was one, for his own lines.

Her debut was utterly lovely. Perfect suede slacks, perfect long knit dresses—one in a shocking banana yellow—and perfect warm blanket-like suits. —Christina Binkley

4. Sonia Rykiel: ’70s to the Max

The hippest coeds around (and their mothers) will be wearing Sonia Rykiel’s velvet maxi-dresses and jumpsuits, and metallic silver leather pants. It’s extraordinary to see how quickly a savvy designer can take a moribund brand and hot-ify it.

Julie de Libran’s first collection for the label, for spring, has just reached stores so we don’t yet know if consumers will reach for their credit cards. Within the fashion crowd, though, the verdict is in. Sonia Rykiel—in the hands of the former studio director for Marc Jacob’s Louis Vuitton—has turned from moribund to must-have.

Ms. Libran says her favorite era is the ’70s, and it shows in her fall collection, which captures the vivacious, experimental nature of that era, but updates it, all the while adhering to the modes of the house: the stripe, the pencil-skirt shape, and edgy details that Ms. Rykiel herself once pioneered, like the patches on fur coats. —Christina Binkley

5. Stella McCartney: Fur Fakeout

Stella McCartney, who is vehemently anti-fur and leather, showed fuzzy, fake-fur coats for fall, with a hint of disco era when done in white. A dark-colored one, though, was hard to distinguish from real fur on the runway.

Her spunky collection, like Phoebe Philo’s Celine, is always about real women with busy lives. Ms. McCartney’s looks are higher energy though, and enough are produced that they can be found in stores. Long, wide slacks, some with huge cuffs, and half sweaters that covered just arm, gave her fall collection a relaxed ease.

Curved, chunky heels marked her booties—still in ’70s style as is the trend. The trouble with faux leather, though, is that it can’t easily be buffed back to perfection when it’s been scratched.

So the shoes have a shorter life (I know from personal experience with Ms. McCartney’s shoes), which may add to the waste stream, among other problems. Sometimes, you just can’t win. —Christina Binkley

6. Giambattista Valli : Camouflage Prints

Few collections are more expensive than Giambattista Valli’s, and few have a better row of global socialites. His are ripe with Fiat-family scions and women named Niarchos, Radziwill, or Santo Domingo. He has lately been dressing a lot of celebrities as well, including Rihanna’s memorable frothy pink Grammy Awards gown.

Net-a-Porter founder and chairman, Natalie Massenet, noted, as she exited the show on Monday at Paris’s Grand Palais that his clothes sell particularly well in the Middle East, where money is often no object.

This is all because Mr. Valli has a keen sense of how to assemble flattering clothes out of wildly elaborate fabrics. His designs have enough structure to camouflage mature bodies where they require it, but they have a youthful verve. His long, jacquard bell-bottoms with botanical prints were gorgeous—even if the huge collection could have been edited down. He out-Missoni-ed Missoni with a zigzag-striped suit of a tunic over matching slacks. —Christina Binkley

04:34 Publié dans fashion | Lien permanent | Commentaires (0)


Paris Fashion Week AW15 show report


The first Paris exhibition dedicated to the French couturier Jeanne Lanvin opens this week at the Palais Galliera. It tells the story of the extraordinary Mademoiselle (Melle Jeanne), a former milliner who established her first shop in 1885, launched a childrenswear and womenswear in 1908 and a best-selling perfume, Arpège, in 1927.

One of fashion’s first superwomen, her business was largely inspired by her only daughter Marguerite (the inseparable mother and daughter are still depicted in the house’s signature logo) and the exhibition has been designed to make people fall in love once more with the couturier. Fair enough: it would seem most unsisterly to snub someone who built their house on the foundation of maternal devotion (and savvy business acumen).

Created in close association with the house’s incumbent artistic director Alber Elbaz, who has led Lanvin since 2001, the exhibition had inspired Elbaz to go back to his roots in Morocco and to tell a story of “urban travel”.

The show opened gently: a pair of equestrian-style trousers with a tasselled belt and flashing red stripes down the side, worn tucked into stack-heeled boots and paired with a white top and navy jacket. The line was sharper than usual and more pulled together. Similar looks followed — graphic tops and skirts, robe coats and simple jersey dresses cinched with asymmetric harness belts that snaked around the bust and shoulder. Then more layers were added: a 1970s-style fedora hat sliced away on one side, fur and fringing, long black gloves, passementerie belts and more tassels.

Then came the haute hippies, a clutch of chiffon-clad, shearling-snuggled Bohemians in metallic spun gowns that fell to the floor, Berber striped separates, golden silks, patchwork furs and python. From a palette of mostly black, there came a flash of autumnal colour — tonal reds, butter yellow, pale blues and ochre.

And then it all went quiet again. The final looks recalled the same austerity of the first though now embellished with red embroidery and sequin florals and flushed with pitch-black velvet.

It was an idiosyncratic collection, or as Elbaz described it “an endless game of contrasts”, and felt almost episodic in its unveiling. But although it took a meandering tour through many different landscapes, it told a familiar story: here were wearable clothes for real women. With tassels on, too.Read more at:cocktail dresses

03:05 Publié dans fashion | Lien permanent | Commentaires (0)