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May 12, 2015

H&M to launch a full beauty line this autumn; follows successful opening in Lima, Perú

Lucire staff/15.00

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Jose J. Martinez

Top H&M will launch a complete beauty line. Above H&M opened in Perú with 2,000 queuing up.

Hennes & Mauritz has dabbled in beauty before, but this autumn will see the Swedish fashion retailer launch a full line, with make-up, hair care, body care and beauty tools. The company says the range will complement its fashion line and change seasonally, and that it will go out to all 900 stores worldwide and online at hm.com. It will consist of 700 products, with seasonal drops of new and limited-edition colour collections, and replace all current beauty products at H&M.
   There will be two additional subsidiary collections: a premium line and an Ecocert-approved, sustainable Conscious line.
   â€˜We are very excited to offer “fashion for the face” at H&M. It’s an opportunity to be inventive and creative, and to have fun with colours,’ said Sara Wallander, concept designer at H&M Beauty in a release.
   The announcement comes on the heels of H&M’s announcement that it has opened a store in Perú on Saturday. As with many of its earlier openings, there were plenty of fans queuing up to get a first taste of the Swedish retailer. The new store, one of the largest globally, is located at the Jockey Plaza mall in Lima, spans three floors, and includes H&M Home. The autumn fashion collections for men, women and children and the Conscious collection are represented.
   Of the 2,000 who came to the opening, H&M handed out gift cards: the first three in line received gift cards of S/. 700, S/.500 and S/.300 respectively; the next 299 in line received S/.150 each, and the last 998 in line, S/.70.






Jose J. Martinez

Above, from top At the H&M Lima opening: Marina Mora and Percy Lucio. Natalia Merino. Rebeca Escribens and Maria Grazia Gamarra.

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May 1, 2015

It’s full circle for style.com: back to its origins in fashion retail

Jack Yan/14.17

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Top Earlier today, attempting to get into Style.com meant a virus warning—the only trace of this curiosity is in the web history. Above Style.com is back, with a note that it will be transforming into an e-tail site.

If there’s one constant in fashion, it’s change. The other one, which we notice thanks to a number of our team being well schooled on fashion history, is that trends always return, albeit in modified form. Both have come into play with Style.com, which announced earlier this week that it would become an ecommerce site.
   When Lucire started, we linked to style.com, but it wasn’t in our fashion magazines’ directory. It was, instead, in our shopping guide.
   In 2000, that all changed, and it began appearing under our fashion magazine links, where it was until today. An attempt to log in to the home page was met by a virus warning, preventing us from going further. We figured that this was part of the transformation of the website as it readied itself for the next era, discouraging people from peering. However, having had these warnings splashed across our own pages two years ago courtesy of Google’s faulty bot, when our site was in fact clean, there was a part of us taking it with a grain of salt. In either case, given the impending change, it was probably the right time to remove the link.
   This evening, Style.com is back and virus-free, with an overlay graphic announcing that the website will be changing. Plenty of our media colleagues have analysed the closure over the past week: the Murdoch Press has gossiped about how the layoffs were announced, WWD suggests editor-in-chief Dirk Standen didn’t know it was coming, based on rumours, while Fashionista puts it all into context by analysing just where ecommerce is within the fashion sector, and that content should be the answer over clothing sales.
   What is interesting is no one that we’ve spotted has mentioned how the style.com domain name (we’ve carefully noted it in lowercase there) has effectively come full circle. Perhaps we really are in the age of Wikipedia-based research, as this fact is not mentioned there at all.
   When Lucire launched in 1997, style.com was the website for Express Style, later more prominently, and simply, branded Express, a US fashion retailer. It’s not hard to imagine that had Express remained at the URL, it would have become an e-tailer; it has, after all, made the move into ecommerce at its present home, express.com. Like a fashion trend that comes back two decades later, style.com has gone back to its roots: by the autumn it’ll be e-tailing.
   The omission from the above paragraph is the sale of the style.com domain name by Express to Condé Nast in the late 1990s. We never completely understood the need to start a new brand to be the US home of Vogue and W; for many  years, typing vogue.com into the browser in the US would take one automatically to Style.com. Then, somewhere along the line, Condé Nast decided that vogue.com should be the online home of Vogue after all.
   But having made the decision to forge ahead with Style.com, Condé Nast did it with a lot of resources, and took its site to number one among print fashion magazine web presences in a remarkably short space of time. It devoted plenty of resources to it, and it’s thanks to Style.com that certain things that were once frowned upon—e.g. showing off catwalk collections after the show—became acceptable. Designers used to enjoy the fact that we and Elle US delayed online coverage, the belief being that the delay ensured that pirates could not copy their designs and beat them to the high street.
   To get itself known, Condé Nast bought advertising at fashion websites that were better known, including this one (yes, in 2000 that really was the case), at a time when online advertising cost considerably more than it does today.
   The muscle from the best known name in fashion publishing changed the way the media interacted with readers. Designers figured that if they wanted coverage, they would have to accept that their work would be shown nearly instantly. We became used to that idea, so much so that we now have to show the catwalk videos live in the 2010s.
   In some ways, the change makes sense: we’re talking about an Alexa rank in the 4,000s, which translates to plenty of traffic. The name is known, and most shoppers will make some association with Vogue. The official word is that Franck Zayan, formerly head of ecommerce for Galeries Lafayette, will helm the revised website, and he’s reporting that brands are coming on board rapidly.
   One shouldn’t mourn the loss of Style.com as a fashion news portal, since the content we’re all used to is bound to appear at Vogue. And in all the years we had it in our magazines’ directory, it was listed under our Vogue entry anyway. We await the new site to see what Condé Nast will do with it, and it may yet return to the spot where it once was in the 20th century, in the shopping guide.—Jack Yan, Publisher

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April 24, 2015

Jacob’s Creek introduces Double Barrel range—red wines aged in whisky barrels—in New Zealand

Lucire staff/22.03

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Jacob’s Creek’s new Double Barrel range has made it across the Tasman, with Kiwis now able to sample chief winemaker Bernard Hickin’s successful concept of finishing wine in aged whisk(e)y barrels, the reverse of ageing whisky in old wine barrels. He believes that this hasn’t been done before, and the company has opted to use Scotch whisky and Irish whiskey barrels that had held their contents for up to 20 years.
   â€˜I wanted to express the character of the whisky barrel but not make it taste like whisky. I figured that, if you wanted something to taste like whisky, you would drink a whisky,’ says Hickin.
   They begin their ageing in traditional French and American oak wine barrels first before being transferred to the whisk(e)y ones, hence the name.
   As far as we can tell, he’s succeeded. The 2012 first vintage Barossa shiraz, finished in Scotch barrels, is smoother while the 2012 first vintage Coonawarra cabernet sauvignon, in the Irish whiskey ones, has a stronger aroma.
   The process has taken Jacob’s Creek two years to perfect, says the company.
   Jacob’s Creek Double Barrel goes on sale at leading liquor retailers throughout New Zealand from May 2015, priced at NZ$24·99.

       
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Filed under: living, Lucire, New Zealand, Paris
April 17, 2015

John Varvatos opens in Detroit with black-carpet party, with Alice Cooper rocking his best

Lucire staff/13.00

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Loreen Sarkis



Tasos Katopodis

Detroit is undergoing a renaissance, at least in terms of its reputation across the US. A few years ago, Eminem promoted Chrysler as being proudly from Detroit, a city that has been through it all, and John Varvatos now celebrates the place with a new store, opening with a VIP party featuring a live performance by Alice Cooper.
   It’s no surprise, then, to learn that Chrysler had a hand in this party, too, and both Varvatos and Cooper are Detroit natives, proud that their city is emerging out of some of its toughest years.
   The 600-strong ‘black carpet’ party, at which Cooper belted out ‘Nice Guy’, ‘Wheels’, ‘Billion Dollar Babies’, ‘Be My Lover’, ‘Lost in America’, ‘Dirty Diamond’, ‘Bite Your Face Off’, ‘Brown Sugar’, ‘Break on Thru’, ‘Foxy’, ‘My Generation’, ‘18’, ‘Poison’, and ‘School’s Out’, was hosted in association with Dan Gilbert and Bedrock Real Estate.
   Other VIPs included model Kate Upton, Justin Verlander (Detroit Tigers), Michael Bolton, Nicole Curtis, Eric Ebron (Detroit Lions), Chris Chelios (NHL Hall of Famer), R&B and soul singer Dwele, Fiat–Chrysler top brass such as Al Gardner and Olivier François, Nate Forbes, Jim Ketai, Dan Mullen, Devin Gardner (NFL prospect) and Mojo in the Morning hosts Thomas ‘Mojo’ Carballo, Shannon Murphy, and Spike.
   Varvatos introduced the evening in his home town, saying, ‘For me, this is more than a store opening celebration. It’s a kick-off celebration of things to come to the city of Detroit. The future is bright and it’s just the beginning!’
   Cooper noted afterwards, ‘It’s great to be back in Detroit rocking out with John Varvatos.’
   Gardner said in a release, ‘The Chrysler brand has a long-standing partnership with John Varvatos that has evolved over the years, so when he asked us to be a part of this event taking place in our own backyard, we immediately said, “Yes.”’ Chrysler showed off its rebodied 300 on the black carpet, helping cement its position as a Detroit icon.
   Gilbert said, ‘The immeasurable energy felt in the store solidified that the arrival of J. V.’s iconic fashion and rock ’n’ roll brand in downtown Detroit is truly destined for success. With construction well underway for the M-1 Rail along the Woodward Corridor, combined with the rapid growth of retail, restaurants and tech companies opening in downtown Detroit, a grand celebration such as this one is the first of many more to come to Detroiters.’
   The new 4,600 ft², two-storey store is located at a brownstone at 1500 Woodward Avenue, and is owned and managed by Bedrock Real Estate Services. John Varvatos’ full line of menswear is represented, including John Varvatos Collection, John Varvatos Star USA and Converse by John Varvatos.



Loreen Sarkis



Tasos Katopodis



Loreen Sarkis


Duane Prokop








Loreen Sarkis



Tasos Katopodis

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April 13, 2015

Triumph launches animated Find the One film for the perfect bra, starring Hannah Ferguson

Lucire staff/15.03

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A departure from the usual approach of showing top models in intimate apparel, Triumph has launched an animated movie, Find the One (hashtag #FindTheOne), to promote the perfectly fitting bra.
   The two-minute spot, which will air from April 13 in Germany, the UK and Italy, evokes a romantic, Disney-esque style that many wearers will be familiar with, along with a memorable musical number entitled ‘Find the One’. However, instead of finding Prince Charming, the song is about the ‘life-changing experience’ (Triumph’s words) of finding the right brassière.
   The main animated character, Hannah (right), is based around Triumph and Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue model Hannah Ferguson, who appears in real-life form at the end of the spot.
   In true fairy-tale form, Hannah appears with her friends Tammy and Mara, who head to the boutique with her, Fred the Frog and the Fairy Godmother, who appears as a dress form.
   Stories AG’s Tobias Fueter and Yves Bollag were behind the animation and the characters. Fueter said, ‘Triumph is a fantastic brand for which to create an emotional story. Women easily identify with animated characters, which explains the success of animated fairy tales all over the world.’
   The score was composed by Tony Award-winning composer, Jason Robert Brown, with the vocal performed by three Broadway singers. The Prague Filmharmonic Orchestra performed the score.
   Eszter Szijarto, Head of Brand Marketing at Triumph, said, ‘It is really important for us to find new ways of bringing to life the bra finding journey so that we continue to inspire customers to go for a fitting and find the perfectly fitting bra—“The One”.’
   Through the spot, Triumph wishes to encourage women to look at getting properly fitted for a bra as part of its campaign, aiming to help 500,000 women this year.
   To celebrate the spot, Triumph is running an international competition for its customers, with the hashtag #animateme. The winners will receive an illustration of themselves in the animated style of the film. Details of the competition will be revealed on April 22 and will run through May 13.
   Ferguson wears the Triumph Magic Wire bra at the conclusion of the film. The innovative, award-winning bra features silicone instead of underwire, making it more comfortable to wear.
   Triumph’s Find the One page can be found at triumph.com/findtheone. Customers can visit a Triumph boutique for a fitting or book online.



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April 9, 2015

News in brief: Zen Hair Extensions pitch to the Coachella set; Almay’s Smart Shade Butter Kiss lipsticks

Lucire staff/3.26

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Zen Hair Extensions is tying its latest promotion to Coachella, which begins on Friday in California. It makes sense: if there’s a lack of showers and the days are especially hot this spring in California, then hair extensions will allow attendees to sport great hair through the festival with a variety of styles. The company sources from remy human hair—the highest grade of human hair, with the cuticles intact—giving a more natural look.
   Almay says its Smart Shade Butter Kiss lipstick collection has the perfect shade, with each colour developed to complement one’s skin tone. Each lipstick features jojoba, coconut oils and vitamin E, aiding hydration. The new range has 12 shades but, as you can see in the photograph, they manage to cover quite a lot of tastes. Retail price in New Zealand is NZ$14·95, on counter at Farmers and selected pharmacies nationwide.
   Finally, Pandora has announced that it has upgraded four of its US stores, at Bridgewater Commons in Bridgewater, NJ; Walden Galleria in Buffalo, NY; Ross Park Mall in Pittsburgh, Pa.; and Pheasant Lane Mall in Nashua, NH. There are new jewellery fixtures and a more spacious environment at each location, with their grand reopening events having taken place at the end of March. Pandora says the four set a precedent for its other US stores.

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Specsavers identifies trends for autumn–winter 2015

Lucire staff/2.27

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Specsavers has identified six trends for autumn–winter 2015, endorsed by its Sydney style ambassador, General Pants Co.’s Pip Edwards.
   Taking the Pantone report for the year, the marsala colour is in; as are grey and blue (including aquamarine, navy and azure); bold, graphic shapes; the return of the aviator styles; and transparent glasses.
   While the retailer will launch items from Osiris Eyewear, Tommy Hilfiger and Puma this season, they also offer their own designs.
   Some of the “in” styles for each of Specsavers’ trends are shown below.
   Edwards was named a Specsavers ambassador in mid-2014.


Osiris Brontë, NZ$369 for two pairs; Pentax single vision lenses included


Alfa, NZ$119 for one pair; Pentax single vision lenses included


TH 75, NZ$459 for two pairs; Pentax single vision lenses included


Osiris Gino, NZ$369 for two pairs; Pentax single vision lenses included


Osiris Luigi, NZ$369 for two pairs; Pentax single vision lenses included


Player, NZ$169 for two pairs; Pentax single vision lenses included

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April 6, 2015

Lane Bryant redefines sexy with new campaign, shot by Cass Bird, styled by Kiwi Kat Neale

Lucire staff/17.23

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Cass Bird

Perhaps as a tongue-in-cheek reference to Victoria’s Secret, Lane Bryant, the US retailer specializing in fashion for women sizes 14 to 28, has released a campaign called I’m No Angel (with the associated hashtag, #ImNoAngel).
   Lane Bryant’s concept is to turn the old concept of what sexy is around, with the core message that all women are sexy.
   The campaign, which breaks in the US today (Easter Monday), features a series of TVCs and photographs by Cass Bird, with models Ashley Graham, Marquita Pring, Candice Huffine, Victoria Lee, Justine Legault and Elly Mayday, wearing Lane Bryant’s Cacique lingerie. New Zealander Kathryn Neale styled the campaign. It will appear at point of sale, Lane Bryant’s website, social media, billboards and on public transportation in the US.
   Social media users are invited to submit their own selfies to showcase their own idea of sexy, hashtagging #ImNoAngel, with the distinctive addition of writing the hashtag on a mirror.
   â€˜Our #ImNoAngel campaign is designed to empower all women to love every part of herself,’ said Lane Bryant CEO and president Linda Heasley. Lane Bryant firmly believes that she is sexy and we want to encourage her to confidently show it, in her own way,” said Lane Bryant CEO and President, Linda Heasley.

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