Lucire: News


October 1, 2015

Ikea extends itself into fashion: you read it here first last year

Lucire staff/23.16

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September 29’s Ikea Fashion Show at Moda di Milano (hashtagged both #IKEAfashion and #IKEAtemporary) showcased work from two designers who collaborated with the Swedish-founded furniture conglomerate.
   ‘With a number of new collections that have been developed in collaboration with fashion designers, Ikea is stepping into new territory—one from which we can learn a lot,’ according to the company.
   Giltig by Katie Eary and Svärtan by Martin Bergström will see their collections retailed in 2016, but they received a boost in profile thanks to their appearance at one of the top fashion weeks in the world.
   For us, the first thing that came to mind when seeing Ikea fashion was Stefan Engeseth’s (below right) prediction, published in Lucire first last year, and later in, the Daily Mail, The Guardian and Flare, plus a number of newspapers and news websites: that fashion should be Ikea’s next industry.
   At the time, Ikea had no such plans officially, but it isn’t surprising to see another one of Engeseth’s predictions come true. He came up with the idea of Coca-Cola being served through taps at home before Coke itself actually trialled that idea, plus another, over 15 years ago, on how cellphones could connect two strangers, albeit not through an app.
   We wrote: ‘Engeseth says that Ikea’s expertise lends itself easily to the world of apparel …
   ‘He believes that fashion is in a repetitive cycle, stuck in history and needing renewal.
   ‘Ikea could offer both complete apparel items and composite parts that customers could assemble themselves, says Mr Engeseth. The parts could be “tailored” at home in inventive ways without the need for complex sewing.’
   Last year, Lucire publisher Jack Yan added, ‘This taps in to its existing fan base, and just as importantly, Ikea can make full use of its channels, outmanœuvring many existing fashion labels. Ikea has an international retail base and it has distribution down to a fine art.’
   When we asked him about the Ikea show in Milano yesterday, he had his reservations about some of the designs, but stated, ‘It’s good that Ikea takes its first step into fashion, and rewarding to see them developing the concept more now.’
   He was also buoyed by seeing that, after the show, Ikea’s official Twitter account went back to his blog post late last year about Ikea fashion, and “favourited” a Tweet about it. Engeseth even preempted the hashtag used back in 2014.
   There’s no sign that Ikea fashion will be in a composite format, ready for its customers to assemble, but Engeseth appears to have been right that the brand would extend itself into the new segment.

September 30, 2015

Kate Hudson is the Campari calendar model for 2016, photographed by Michelangelo di Battista

Alex Barrow/11.11

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Francesco Pizzo

Kate Hudson has been announced as the 2016 model for the iconic Campari calendar. The brand belongs to the namesake Italian wine company which produces the well-known apéritif. The drink itself is a palatable combination of bitter and sweet which is drawn on in the 2016 calendar theme.
   With a relevant setting of an upcoming presidential election, Hudson embodies separate roles of bitterness and seduction versus sweetness and subtlety, a play on the taste of the Campari red wine. ‘Each month embodies the different profiles Campari embodies, alongside Kate Hudson’s incredible talent and ability to switch from approachable, welcoming and sensual to audacious and seductive,’ said Bob Kunze-Concewitz, CEO of Gruppo Campari.
   Hudson, as a Hollywood actress and entrepreneur, said that she was honoured to work with the company in creating ‘two distinctive characters embodying bitter and sweet.’
   Fashion photographer Michelangelo Di Battista, who shot Hudson for the calendar, applauded both her and the company for their artistic direction in the project: ‘Campari is a brand that has always had a clear sense of æsthetic and well defined style … Kate’s enthusiasm and ability to switch between the two personalities allowed me to create images I hope are fresh, inspiring and imaginative.’
   With the images being officially unveiled on November 18, the Italian label is maintaining its reputation for their much anticipated calendar with the prominent presence of Kate Hudson. Past stars have included Eva Green, Uma Thurman, Penélope Cruz, Salma Hayek, Milla Jovovich, Olga Kurylenko and Jessica Alba.—Alex Barrow

Michelangelo Di Battista

Francesco Pizzo

Bar Refaeli, Pelé and Lapo Elkann celebrate Hublot’s Big Bang watch anniversary at new production warehouse

Alex Barrow/10.17

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Hublot, the luxury watch company, opened an expansive new production warehouse in Nyon, Switzerland on the 10-year anniversary of their iconic Big Bang watch on Tuesday.
   Three hundred guests from around the globe attended the opening event including ambassadors, VIP guests, friends of the company and journalists. The milestone ceremony was further endorsed by notable Hublot ambassadors Pelé, Bar Refaeli and Lapo Elkann who contributed to the handing over of keys ceremony.
   To celebrate the sweeping popularity of the large watch, the warehouse was developed to keep up with enormous production demand. With the first major production centre being built just six years ago, this feat recognizes and celebrates the vast success the company has had with their luxury watches.
   Owned by big-brand conglomerate LVMH, Hublot has consistently enhanced and cemented their reputation as high-quality, skilled watchmakers recognized the world over. Over the past decade the Big Bang watch has been celebrated at various award ceremonies internationally in Genève, Japan and the Middle East. With the rapid success of the company in such a short time, the decade anniversary celebrations of the Big Bang watch indicates that Hublot aren’t even considering slowing down their economic boom.
   Based in Switzerland, the new warehouse is destined to house over one hundred work stations which will bring Swiss employees up to over 400 people working for the company. Due to the high sales of the last decade, the company have afforded SFr 20,000,000 into the project. To further celebrate the acheivements, the company has launched a “decade of success” campaign across the 73 Hublot stores worldwide.—Alex Barrow

David Beckham opens Adidas’s flagship Dubai Homecourt store at the Mall of the Emirates

Lucire staff/8.16

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Warren Little

David Beckham opened Adidas’s Dubai Homecourt flagship store on Tuesday, delighting the thousands of fans who had ventured to the Mall of the Emirates to get a glimpse of the football star.
   Beckham personally welcomed 50 winners of an Instagram competition, who were individually greeted and photographed, and some managed selfies with the footballer.
   The 375 m² store is designed to bring a more authentic in-store experience, says Adidas. The store features the Arena Façade, which resembles an entrance gate, welcoming each visitor with a “sound shower” of cheering fans as one enters; a Team Room, a large fitting area and social space allowing shoppers to try on products; and the Shoebase, a bar with an interactive table and two touch-screens connected to the Adidas website to help customers select a product.
   Those present included Adidas directors and vice-presidents from the Middle East and North Africa regions: Osman Ayaz, Jason Thomas, Tushar Goculdas, Jad Chouman, and Siddarth Jham.
   Beckham said, ‘I always love coming to Dubai—it’s a special place that’s constantly evolving, just like Adidas and their stores. Spending some time here today, it was great to get a sense of the energy people have for sport. In Dubai I’ve met people from all around the world who are united in their passion for sport.’
   Fans can find more on social media at and @adidasmena on Twitter and Instagram.

Warren Little

Filed under: celebrity, fashion, GCC, living, Lucire
September 29, 2015

Huawei, Vogue China and Fornasetti collaborate on custom smart watch, released at Milan Fashion Week

Alex Barrow/23.17

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Vittorio Zunino Celotto

A collaboration between big names Huawei, Vogue China and Fornasetti sparked the creation of the Fornasetti smart watch, the unveiling of which was done at Vogue China’s 10-year anniversary celebrations. Celebrated at the closure of Milan Fashion Week, the introduction of the special edition watch has allowed for it to be seen in the limelight of the fashion world.
   Huawei, a global innovation company, works towards bettering and expanding on telecom networks. With a focus on consumer product, technical innovation and research and development, the company has expanded through Asia, Europe, the US and Russia. Huawei’s crowd-sourcing specialists have opened up a platform for outside artists and designers to contribute designs for appropriate accessories to complement the watch such as customized skins, or potential ideas for future technologies such as smart phones or smart watches.
   The watch itself is a product of Huawei Business Group, but the design was customized by Fornasetti, the celebrated interior design and fashion label. The watch has all the traditional makings of a high-quality, sophisticated watch such as the scratch-resistant sapphire crystal class and stainless steel frame, as well as the traditional 42 mm diameter of the watch face itself. What makes this accessory stand out is its technical capabilities, inclusive of playing music downloads offline, Bluetooth connections and a heart rate and motion sensor. These make it the ideal companion for monitored physical activity without the bulk of other smart technologies.
   Designer Barnaba Fornasetti said his design had a multi-dimensional inspiration to it which contributed to the final product. ‘The Fornasetti brand is built upon the revival and reinvention of its classic designs and objects, giving them a new purpose and always keeping its artisan approach. The Lina face is a part of my father’s legacy and to reinforce its timeless design, I paradoxically decided to apply it on a cutting edge product that keeps time.’ The image on the watch face is a vintage-style depiction of a woman’s face, namely inspired by that of Lina Cavalieri, an Italian opera singer. This image is an established symbol of Fornasetti and has been used in a similar fashion in the label’s past designs.
   The collaboration between the three large names has allowed space for future business endeavours, opening up each other’s company networks. Glory Zhang of Huawei said, ‘This collaboration with Fornasetti is the start of an exciting journey for Huawei, delivering connections between innovative technology and art, design and culture. This is the first of many exciting cultural collaborations as we move to become an innovator within the arts’.
   Notable attendees of the event included models Karlie Kloss and Sean O’Pry, AC Milan footballer Riccardo Montolivo and model Cristina de Pin, fashion photographer Mario Testino, Giorgio Armani, Vogue China editor-in-chief Angelica Cheung. Representing Huawei was Glory Zhang, its chief marketing officer. All attendees of the event were gifted with the smart watches and modelled them for the evening.—Alex Barrow

Vittorio Zunino Celotto

September 28, 2015

Video: Victoria Beckham, Charlize Theron speak at United Nations General Assembly on ending Aids by 2030

Lucire staff/13.22

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Top UNAIDS executive director Michel Sidibé with Victoria Beckham. Above Charlize Theron addresses the high-level UN event.

On Sunday, Victoria Beckham made her first public appearance since London Fashion Week, speaking at the United Nations in New York in her capacity as a UNAIDS goodwill ambassador at the 70th session of the UN General Assembly.
   Beckham spoke on the first day of the Social Good Summit, appearing alongside other luminaries such as HRH Princess Sarah Zeid of Jordan, UNDP administrator and former New Zealand prime minister Helen Clark, former US Secretary of State Madeleine Albright, Charlize Theron, Jennifer López, Laverne Cox, Alek Wek, and humanitarian Graca Machel.
   Beckham saw her platform as one where she can help the goal of ensuring that no baby is born with HIV. ‘I will do whatever I can to raise awareness. I feel very passionate about this,’ she said. ‘I recently visited South Africa and was so touched by the women I met and felt inspired. I came home and I knew I had to do something.’
   Said Theron, Messenger of Peace for the United Nations and founder of the Charlize Theron Africa Outreach Project, ‘There is a generation in jeopardy. Young people are falling through the cracks in the Aids response. But there is reason to hope, we know what works—empowering young people to take care of their health.’
   The UN has set a goal of ending Aids by 2030, as part of its ambitious Sustainable Development Goals.
   Clark noted, ‘For me it’s about peaceful and inclusive societies, because without that we don’t have the basis for any sustainable development at all. It’s about momentum, hold people accountable, hold your governments accountable, stay engaged as citizens, keep advocating on social media and not wait 15 years to see what happens.’

Kagi adds charm to its Hope Acorn jewellery collection, supporting Child Cancer Foundation

Lucire staff/12.46

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Top The Kagi Hope Acorn charm. Above The new NZ$79 charm along with the Kagi Steel Me bracelet, which retails for NZ$139.

Kagi has added a new charm to its Hope Acorn jewellery collection, a collaboration with the Child Cancer Foundation (CCF), with NZ$5 from each purchase going to the charity to support families and children going through cancer treatment.
   The Hope Acorn charm, priced at NZ$79, will be available from November. It joins the Hope Acorn earring charms (NZ$79 per pair) and Hope Acorn pendant (NZ$135).
   Designer Kat Gee noted, ‘I had a lot of Mums contact me directly saying they loved the large Hope acorn and wanted smaller charm to give to their children as a symbol of love and protection. It was a such a sweet concept that I felt we just had to do it! I also had all of my Kagi girls wanting them for themselves too there was no choice, really.’
   ‘Our team is supporting more than 500 families at any one time across the country, aiming to reduce the impact of cancer by offering services that ensure children and their families are supported, informed and well cared for at every stage of their journey,’ said CCF commercial manager, Jo Rodgers. ‘We receive no direct government funding, so [we] rely on the generosity of New Zealanders and on innovative businesses like Kagi to provide practical and meaningful support to families when they need it.’
   The collection has already raised over NZ$20,000 for the CCF and Kids with Cancer Australia charities, according to Kagi. They can be bought online at; retailers are also listed at the website.

September 25, 2015

Brancott Estate World of Wearable Art Awards’ Show 2015 sees Nelson’s Peter Wakeman take top honours

Lucire staff/11.00

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Courtesy World of Wearable Art Awards’ Show

Top Diva’s Dreamscape, by Peter Wakeman. Above Deadly Beauty, by Xi Zhang.

Nelson, New Zealand designer Peter Wakeman has won the 2015 Brancott Estate World of Wearable Art Supreme WOW Award with his entry Diva’s Dreamscape.
   Wakeman wins $30,000 in prizes with his design, entered into the Creative Excellence Section: Architecture category. Made from stainless steel, wood and fibreglass, interpreting the art-déco era, the judges admired Wakeman’s workmanship while the founder of the World of Wearable Art Awards’ Show, Dame Suzie Moncrieff, praised its artistic integrity.
   ‘Diva’s Dreamscape really is a stunning piece of art,’ she says. ‘It has a strong simplicity that works perfectly from every angle. The use of such hard materials to create a sophisticated garment demonstrates great skill and creative ability.’
   Diva’s Dreamscape was the unanimous choice of the judges, which included Dame Suzie, sculptor Greer Twiss and fashion designer Denise l’Éstrange-Corbet.
   It is the third time Wakeman has entered WOW, and the second time he has won a prize. In 2013, he was runner-up to the Supreme Award winner for his Chica under Glass.
   Xi Zhang, a student from Donghua University, Shanghai, took the runner-up prize this year, with Deadly Beauty. Zhang entered her design, made from feathers, beads and mesh cloth, into the Wellington Airport Avant Garde section.
   There were 107 entries by 123 designers who were chosen for the Brancott Estate World of Wearable Art Awards’ Show this year.
   The American Express Open section was won by Jeff Thomson of Auckland with Tinker. Thomson also won the New Zealand Design Award with Tinker. For Annie, by Doreen Helms and Susan Thurner of Nelson, won the children’s section. Philippa Stitchbury of Melbourne, Victoria won the Aotearoa section with On Reflection; while the Man section, with the theme of Uniform this year, was won by Chris Wilson and Gary Wilson of Upper Hutt with their Piper of the Lights. The Weta Costume and Film section was won by Joanna Peacock of Colchester, England, with her design To Be or Not to Be.
   The Cirque du Soleil Performance Art Costume Award went to Tess Taverner Hanks of Sydney, NSW, for Kaleidoscope. Hanks also won the Shell Student Innovation Award with the same design. The WOW Factor Award was won by Rodney Leong with Get Behind Me Satan.
   Another Donghua University student, Qianwen Hong, won with Exotic in the Wearable Technology Award, and the Shell Sustainability Award was won by Wanganui’s Danielle Sasvari with Templa Mentis.
   The First-Time Entrant Award was won by Ewelina Kosmal of Konskie, with Brave New World.
   The Wellington International Awards are given to entrants in different parts of the globe. The overall winner was M45 Pleiades by Maria Tsopanaki and Dimitri Mavinis of London; they also won for the UK and Europe category. Starship Girl, by Julian Hartzog of Tarpon Springs, Fla., won for the Americas. Mona, by Kerryta Chau, Wing Lam Yeung and Emily Lau of the Hong Kong Design Institute, won for Asia; and The Stitch Witch, by Sarah Seahorse and Luna Aquatica of Melbourne, Victoria, won for Australia and the South Pacific.
   The total prize pool of 40 awards had a combined value of NZ$165,000. Thirteen New Zealand-designed garments won 15 awards, and 24 awards were won by 18 international designs.

Above, from top Tinker, by Jeff Thomson. For Annie, by Doreen Helms and Susan Thurner. On Reflection, by Philippa Stitchbury. To Be or Not to Be, by Joanna Peacock. Kaleidoscope, by Tess Taverner Hanks. Get Behind Me Satan, by Rodney Leong. Exotic, by Qianwen Hong. Templa Mentis, by Danielle Sasvari. Brave New World, by Ewelina Kosmal. M45 Pleiades by Maria Tsopanaki and Dimitri Mavinis. Starship Girl, by Julian Hartzog. Mona, by Kerryta Chau, Wing Lam Yeung and Emily Lau. The Stitch Witch, by Sarah Seahorse and Luna Aquatica.

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