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September 12, 2014

Being a VIP at Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week New York this season

Lola Cristall/7.42

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What were the happenings around Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week New York, beyond the catwalk shows? Off-site events and suitesā€”including one from Gavin Keilly of GBK, which we usually see out westā€”kept New York Fashion Week vibrant and enjoyable.

Ugg Sanctuary
Upon ascending the stairs to the Ugg Sanctuary, overlooking crowds waiting in endless queues to watch a show, you enter a new world. The small space is cozy with a home-like feel. White leather couches, comfortably cushioned chairs draped with tasteful, soft blankets adorned with matching pillowsā€”everything came together. A large flat screen television featured the live fashion shows. The international brand is recognized for comfort at every step, with fun and stylish shoes as well as boots, adding chic to each ensemble. Ugg is widening its sphere, presenting attractive home dĆ©cor with a snug atmosphere and neutral shades.

GBK and Pilot Penā€™s Celebrity Gifting Suite
As the tents at Lincoln Center glistened with a slew of runway shows as well as a few private lounges, the spotlight also shone on the Empire Hotel where GBK and Pilot Penā€™s Celebrity Gifting Suite took place. While the hotelā€™s lobby was calm and peaceful with a number of fashion week attendees, a flight of stairs led to a more spirited space filled with a number of brands in the beauty, fashion and accessory domains. The charity of choice, Gabrielleā€™s Angel Foundation for Cancer Research, serves to develop treatments to improve the quality of life of patients diagnosed with various cancers including lymphoma and leukemia.



Kris Connor/Getty Images

Top Teresa Aprea and Nicole Napolitano at the GBK lounge. Above Emma Myles and Gavin Keilly.

   As we continue to explore the lounge, with floral creations from Floral Heights, uplifting music by DJ Max Power kept the mood upbeat. Pilot Pen introduced new designs that came in various colours to suit the writerā€™s preference. Michael Todd True Organics presented the Soniclear Brush, the worldā€™s first antimicrobial sonic skin cleaning brush, which is easy to transport and gentle to the touch, permitting the outer skin to glisten.
   Hard Candy cosmetics’ intense shades come with a dose of fun and appeal, intended for a girl of any age that appreciates the use of colour. Skinny & Co. presented their 100 per cent raw skinny coconut oil, which can be used in teas, coffees and smoothiesā€”helping you glow inside. Brow Art 23 is a top-notch boutique focused on brow shaping and skin care services, while EMK Beverly Hills, whose clientĆØle includes A-list personalities, dermatologists and high-end plastic surgeons, uses a fascinating plant placenta formula for its anti-ageing skin care products that rejuvenate the skin.


Kris Connor/Getty Images

Above Katherine McNamara at the GBK lounge at New York Fashion Week.

Other events
The Home Shopping Network (HSN) was back with their lounge. The one-day event incorporated a wide range of clothing, skin care and jewellery pieces all under one roof. Invitees took the time to look around, touch, feel and experience the pieces on display.
   For the second year, the Fashion Kitchen event proved how food and fashion complement each other. Trina Turk, inspired by Californiaā€™s vibrancy, is known for her vivacious style, with boutiques located nationally, hosted, alongside celebrity restaurateur and award-winning chef SĆ©amus Mullen, who showed off his simple, elegant cuisine. Along with Turk and Mullen, Corning Ware presented the event. A select few could view arranged dining tables on display at Hauser Patron Salon at Alice Tully Hall, a short walk away from the tents.
   Other fashion week escapades included the Vogue Lounge, conveniently tucked away across the street from the tents, at French restaurant Boulud CafĆ©. Urban Decay cosmetics featured their natural make-up; Toms displayed an array of styles for their shoe collection and reminded attendees of their Toms coffee roast. Brahmin, focusing on leather goods, showed off a number of jewellery and bag pieces. In a separate room, attendees could work or simply read Vogue to catch up on the new season.
   One of the Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week sponsors, Pandora (left), put on an exclusive event on the rooftop of the Empire Hotel. Pink roses adorned the walls, reminding us of their flawless creations. While loud, catchy music vibrated within the venue, the afternoon stretched into the evening as invitees mingled, viewing the gorgeous pieces on display. Tous, too, hosted an event in a pink wonderland on the 12th floor of a tucked-away building in New York, showing its summer 2014 collection. The company, with its recognizable bear trade mark, began as a watch repair workshop in 1920 before transforming into the jewellery business decades later. Currently Tous is an international brand with more than 400 boutiques spotted in 45 different countries.




Above Tous showed off its jewellery at an exclusive location in New York.

   The Panasonic Beauty Bar took place only blocks away from the tents, at the SCK Salon, for two days. The atmosphere did not focus much on sophistication or luxuryā€”it had a more amusing feel in the midst of it all. Various stations were dedicated to hair, manicures by Jamberry Nails, or make-up by Giella custom blend cosmetics, the by-appointment-only opportunities fulfilling delegates’ beauty needs.ā€”Lola Cristall, Paris Editor











Above Scenes from the Panasonic Beauty Bar. Below Louise Roe at the Samsung Galaxy Backstage Lounge.


Donald Bowers/WireImage

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September 8, 2014

Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week New York springā€“summer 2015: more favourites from the ļ¬rst ļ¬ve days

Lucire staff/20.58

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Through Lucireā€™s history, there have been a select group of labels that get featured thanks to their consistency of design and their integrity. It’s no coincidence that they are among our favourites over days three through five at Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week New York: BCBG Max Azria, Marissa Webb, Carmen Marc Valvo, Venexiana, Custo Barcelona, Vivienne Tam, Nanette Lepore, Carolina Herrera and Reem Acra. We were impressed with Taoray Wang and have included this designer for the first time in our pages. Lola Cristall leads our post-event coverage.
   Remember you can watch our live player on our home page for coverage from New York as it happens.

BCBG Max Azria


Marissa Webb

Carmen Marc Valvo



Frazer Harrison/Getty Images

Venexiana


Custo Barcelona


Vivienne Tam



Frazer Harrison/Getty Images

Nanette Lepore


Carolina Herrera



Frazer Harrison/Getty Images

Taoray Wang



Fernanda Calfat/Getty Images

Reem Acra



Frazer Harrison/Getty Images

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September 6, 2014

Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week New York, springā€“summer 2015, days 1 and 2: the global traveller advances

Sopheak Seng/20.06

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Lola Cristall and Maitland Waters will file their end-of-week report from Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week New York, but, in the meantime, fashion editor Sopheak Seng has spotted his favourites from the first two days of the springā€“summer 2015 shows.

Nicole Miller


   Vibe: Summer holidays in Rio.
   Clothes: Fresh floral tropical prints in sharp cut-out dresses and pants, graphic black-and-white wave print on coats and jackets, as well as skirts. Flounces on hems of dresses and skirts recalled the South American vibe that Miller drew upon for her collection. What stood out was the opening outfit, the cross-front dress with the tight fit silhouette and its flounce hem: the playful nature carried the collection as well as the final pieces which had flowers and fruits embroidered in sequins.
   Look: Beachy waves, sun-kissed faces, holiday glamour.

Zimmermann

   Vibe: 1970s hippie tarot readers meets modern day beach glamour.
   Clothes: Soft, floaty and ethereal was the call of the day, with ruffles and flounces a-plenty at the Zimmermann show. The opening was a beautiful wisteria-coloured lace gown with tiered gathers and asymmetric neckline; the collection then moved to masculine and feminine juxtaposition playing throughout the collection with floaty dresses paired with military-style parkas, with cargo pockets or pinstripe vests and tailored suit jackets. Stand-outs were the swimsuits, particularly the black one-piece halter with giant bow detailing, the opening dress as well as the peachy coral-coloured pant suit with cascading asymmetric ruffle blouse.
   Look: Centre-parted gypsy folk hair with sleek ponytails and flushed coral cheeks.


Tome


   Vibe: Uptown girl meets Indian maharanis.
   Clothes: Glamorous clothes infused with a touch of India in the sari-style asymmetric crop tops and ties. The sleeveless trench-style coats with the duo colour lapels, gorgeous pleated skirts in shades of saffron, rose and black. The Rajastani men’s-style shirts with waist sashes, the Madame GrĆØs-inspired pleated gowns that finished the show, and the floral embellished shell tops were all stand-outs.
   Look: Simple, elegant chic fish braids with orchids.

Tadashi Shoji


   Vibe: Elegance and beauty in Venezia.
   Clothes: Inspired by the famous golden palace in Venezia, the Ca’ d’Oro, and its reflections, there was a lightness and glow in this collection. The restrained beauty of the collection started from the first look of the white lace trench dress. The collection featured, heavily, lace, tulle, organza and lots and lots of pleats. All of this did not feel forced as it would have been in anyone else’s hands. The collection of caped gowns should make for some very stand-out red carpet moments come awards’ season. The beautiful collared shirts and shirt dresses crafted in lace and organza were stand-outs as well as the use of mesh piecing in some of the dresses felt fresh.
   Look: Elegant chignons and fresh-faced beauties.

Nicholas K


   Vibe: Urban nomadic warrior.
   Clothes: Nomadic draped sportswear, inspired by a road trip to Morocco. The brotherā€“sister designer duo gave great sport luxe separates that are made for living and travelling in. Fatigue-style jackets and trousers were the order of the day as were draped and fringed skirts and dresses designed for the urban nomad. Standouts were the draped hooded jackets and knicker-boxers in silk as were the leather jackets. Accessorized with horsehair jewellery by Victoria Simes and lace-up heels by Kiyoon Baek, these collaborations added a sophisticated edge to the collection.
   Look: Sun-kissed skin and sleek nomadic hair.ā€”Sopheak Seng, Fashion and Beauty Editor

Street style in New York

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August 30, 2014

Triumph launches its Magic Wire bra and shapewear lines at Manhattan party

Lucire staff/23.15

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Neilson Barnard

German lingerie brand Triumph launched its Magic Wire brassiĆØre and shapewear lines at the House of Triumph at Old Bowery Station, Manhattan, New York, on Thursday, with celebrities Taryn Manning, Gina Gershon, Jill Hennessy, Debi Mazar, Katrina Bowden and AimĆ©e Garcia in attendance.
   Magic Wire is the first Triumph bra (available up to a G cup) with a flexible silicone wire, which the manufacturer says provides the support of an underwire without the discomfort. The use of silicone leads to a very light weight.
   The bust support system is within the bra’s padding, while a mesh stabilizer offers additional support that moves with the body.
   Magic Wire is available on both Triumph’s Body Make-up and Contouring Sensation bra ranges.
   The event featured champagne, live music by harpist Erin Hill, a contortion and dance performance, and a digital fireworks’ display. Guests were also treated to professional bra fittings with the Magic Wire bras.
   Magic Wire dĆ©buts in the US during the first week of September 2014.

























Neilson Barnard

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August 15, 2014

The Royal New Zealand Ballet’s Allegro journeys from classical to science fiction

Jack Yan/15.57

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Ross Brown

Top A classical approach for Allegro Brillante. Above Larry Keigwinā€™s Megalopolis.

The Royal New Zealand Balletā€™s Allegro: Five Short Ballets, was a bittersweet performance, knowing it would be the last time many in the audience would see the companyā€™s principal guest artist, Gillian Murphy, dance.
   Murphy and her fiancé, RNZB artistic director Ethan Stiefel, are set to return to the US, and she kept a composed, dignified air after the performance when Lucire wished her well for her future.
   The Royal New Zealand Balletā€™s Andrea Tandy noted that Auckland audiences, who had seen Allegro prior to Wellingtonā€™s for a change, gave the five productions a wonderful reception.
   In the first ballet of the five, Allegro Brillante, Murphy and Kohei Iwamoto led a small cast of 10 to Tchaikovskyā€™s Third Piano Concerto, with choreography by the late George Balanchine. Russian-born Balanchineā€™s works have been staged by the RNZB from time to time, and Allegro Brillante was performed in 1999 and 2001. With a classical structure and technique, staged by Eve Lawson, it proved an endearing opening to the performances on the first night in Wellington.
   As skilful as the dancers were, Qi Huanā€™s presence was missed opposite Murphyā€”Huan moved on to the New Zealand School of Dance, teaching classical ballet, telling us earlier that he could not pass up the opportunity.
   The simple settings allowed Nigel Percy’s lighting to set a very different mood each time.
   Les Lutins, which followed, was a particularly enjoyable comedic ballet. It would be the only one with live music of the five, performed by the impressive Benjamin Baker on violin, and Michael Pansters on piano, while Rory Fairweather-Neylan, Arata Miyagawa and Lucy Green played the role of the goblins, in trousers and braces, with simple, carefree choreography by Johan Kobborg. The interaction between the dancers and Baker was cleverly staged, and the neatly executed jetés and tours en lā€™air from Fairweather-Neylan and Miyagawa deserve mention.
   Satellites, after the first interval, brought a scientific theme, conveying the equilibrium that satellites maintain in orbit: as dancers go off, new ones emerge. Graphically, orbits appear in the background, designed and animated by Jac Grenfell, dancers held circular mirrors, while electronic music by Jan-Bas Bollen emphasized the high-tech feel. Kinetic sculptures by Jim Murphy continued the theme (segmented planets hanging in the air), as did Donnine Harrisonā€™s costumes (the discs worn by two ballerinas again reflecting the circular theme). Daniel Belton, who was behind the concept and choreography, was inspired by the Bauhaus movement, with its practitioners Oskar Schlemmer, Paul Klee and Moholy-Nagy, successfully blending the geometry and modernistic approach of the school with balletic expression. For once, those who are disciples of, or simply aware of, Bauhaus principles have a ballet that translates those ideas.
   Mattress Suite, choreographed by Larry Keigwin for his own company, delighted in a simple, playful setting, with a mattress as the one prop, telling the story of newlyweds who drift apart, the groom discovering he is homosexual. It is the only one with mature themes and popular songs (ā€˜Ainā€™t No Sunshineā€™ as sung by Stevie Wonder, and ā€˜At Lastā€™ by Etta James) and the mattress itself was used as everything from a wall to a trampoline in six short dances. Cheekily, the dance with a gay threesome is called ā€˜Straight Duetā€™.
   The RNZB is the first to perform Mattress Suite outside of Keigwin & Company.
   It was Keigwin again for the finalé, Megalopolis, which went beyond science and into science fiction, blending the cinematic Flash Gordon and Studio 54 into a single ballet, finding great favour with the audience. Megalopolis was certainly energeticā€”RNZB finalés often are, and rightly so, when presenting a series of balletsā€”while Fritz Masonā€™s costume design, in black with silver details, was a retrofuturistic delight.
   Allegro: Five Short Ballets continues in Wellington till the 17th at the St James. Invercargill follows on August 20 at the Civic, while Dunedinā€™s Regent Theatre plays host on the 23rd inst.ā€”Jack Yan, Publisher

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August 12, 2014

H&M collaborates with Kate Mara and Johnny Wujek on New York stores’ windows

Lucire staff/15.12

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Hennes & Mauritz

Hennes & Mauritz, with its flagship Fifth Avenue store open in New York alongside other locations in the city, is collaborating with actress Kate Mara (Fantastic Four) and stylist Johnny Wujek to kick off Fashion Week there.
   Mara and Wujek will curate windows in nine H&M New York stores, and introduce their picks in select stores in the US, as well as online.
   On September 4, they will meet fashion students at the Fifth Avenue store for a panel discussion, as the first event of Fashion Week. It also marks the launch of the H&M Studio range for autumnā€“winter 2014ā€“15.
   The pair are close friends and H&M says the windows will reflect their personalities: Mara with a chic, approachable sensibility, and Wujek with bold and quirky styles.
   Their inspiration has come from black-and-white photography of New York’s cityscape, and its light projections, bridges and building windows.
   ā€˜It was a no-brainer for us to work together on this as we both have a true appreciation for accessible high fashion and our favorite city of New York,’ said Mara in a release.
   Wujek added, ‘Immediately I said yes to work on this incredibly creative project with H&M and Kate. H&M is a pioneer in the field of fashion and being asked to creative-direct their store windows for the opening of New York Fashion Week was my Mannequin dream come trueā€”one of my favourite movies growing up. I can’t wait for people to walk by and see the beauty we make in the H&M windows.’




Hennes & Mauritz

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August 11, 2014

Rihanna on the cover of W September 2014, with unmissable Meadowlark Jewellery

Lucire staff/2.03

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Mert Alas and Marcus Piggott

Rihanna is on the September 2014 cover of W, photographed by Mert Alas and Marcus Piggott, styled by Edward Enniful, the magazine’s fashion and style director.
   There’s a New Zealand connection, with the pop star wearing Meadowlark Jewelleryā€™s large Thorn Septum ring, from its upcoming springā€“summer 2014ā€“15 collection, Dynasty, on the cover. The singer wears the ring on her nose on the cover.
   Two versions of the ring, one with diamonds and one without, feature in the editorial inside.
   Meadowlark says it gifted Rihanna the diamond-set septum ring on the day of the shoot, and she had been spotted wearing it.
   She also wears a Donna Karan New York dress, an Ashley Lloyd headdress, Amrapali ruby and diamond ear cuffs, and a Stephen Dweck sterling silver necklace. The shoot took place in July.
   Rihanna is currently on her Monster’s Ball tour with rapper Eminem.

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July 2, 2014

Sarah Jessica Parker and Cindy Chao collaborate on brooch to beneļ¬t New York City Ballet

Lucire staff/12.33

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We’ve had Tamsin Cooper create a line for the Royal New Zealand Ballet, Backes & Strauss partner with the English National Ballet, and now, Sarah Jessica Parker and contemporary fine jeweller Cindy Chao have teamed up to create the 2014 Black Label Masterpiece Ballerina Butterfly brooch to benefit the New York City Ballet.
   It’s not quite a full line: this is a one-off to be auctioned by Sotheby’s Hong Kong this October, at the Hong Kong Magnificent Jewels and Jadeite Sale. However, it was created with the New York City Ballet, on which Parker serves as a director, in mind.
   Parker and Chao connected during Chao’s 2011 Masterpiece Exhibition in Beijing. In 2012, when Chao opened her Beijing boutique, at which Parker was guest of honour, that the pair would collaborate on a piece for charity.
   The collaboration, which took place over the last two years, saw them review sketches, wax models and gemstones together.
   The brooch has a titanium and 18 ct gold body. It features a cushion-cut fancy brown diamond weighing 26Ā­Ā·27 ct, three rough brown diamond slices weighing a total of 47Ā·71 ct, three pieces of conch pearls weighing a total of 7Ā·25 ct, surrounded by 4,698 diamonds and fancy-coloured diamonds weighing a total of 98Ā·09 ct.
   It is meant to be signify the beauty, structure, strength and movement of a ballerina, and can be worn either right-side-up or upside-down.
   It will be first shown in Paris during haute couture fashion week, from which Lucire will report next week. It will then travel throughout Asia, before heading to New York and Hong Kong.
   ā€˜I have had the great pleasure of knowing Cindy and her work for several years, and it has been an incredibly special experience to collaborate with her,’ said Parker. ‘Cindy’s jewellery designs are true works of art; they capture the eye and imagination in a memorable way. I am so pleased to partner with her on this project, which benefits the wonderful work of the New York City Ballet, an organization that is close to my heart.’
   Chao has created a Black Label Masterpiece Butterfly each year since 2008, to symbolize her own metamorphosis, says her company, Cindy Chaoā€”The Art Jewel, which celebrates its 10th anniversary this year.
   ā€˜Sarah Jessica and I are two very different creative minds sharing the same artistic vision and passion,’ said Chao in a release. ‘She truly appreciates the essence and soul of my creations, and I admire her innovative yet classic view on fashion and style. My annual butterflies carry special meaning for me. Collaborating with Sarah Jessica for a cause we both deeply care for and believe in makes this Ballerina Butterfly all the more special.’
   The net proceeds from the auction will go to the ballet company.

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