>> Halloween is all about dressing up, so why not glean a little costume inspiration from those who make a living out of creating the perfect look — all year round? Here, we've asked 13 fashion insiders to share their favorite costumes from Halloweens past; click through to see Pamela Love, Chris Benz, Madewell's Gigi Guerra, and more all decked out in their Halloween finest. Plus, find out which designer got name-checked as having the best costume ever — by two different people — and which sweet treat tops more than one insider's favorite candy list . . . all here, in the slideshow.
>> Colorful, hand-painted pearls and baguettes are back for Tom Binns's Spring 2012 collection, mixed amongst sparkly Swarovski crystals and safety pins. Cameos get a neon dip-dye treatment and crystal collar necklaces are emblazoned with the words "Punk" or "Rich B*tch." Click through to preview the collection, currently available for preorder on Moda Operandi.
>>At the end of last month, Sidney Toledano, president and CEO of Dior, said he expected to have news on Dior's new designer "in the next few weeks." Not a day later came reports that talks between Dior and the front runner for the position, Marc Jacobs, had been tough and at a standstill.
Now, however, WWD reports: "Negotiations with Marc Jacobs . . . to become Dior’s next couturier have been progressing, sources said this week. It is understood . . . Phoebe Philo remains the preferred candidate to succeed Jacobs at Vuitton, should the American designer conclude a deal with Dior."
Dior, which has now been without a creative director since March, reported that its revenues were up 17.6 percent in the third quarter — suggesting that the brand is more potent than the famous designer behind it.
The full Versace For H&M lookbook is here. The collection, which launches in select countries on Nov. 17 and in the US on Nov. 19, runs from $19.95 costume jewelry up to $299 for a leather jacket and the studded leather dress Anna Dello Russo wore. Also included in the offering for the first time — home decor, which consists of pillows, priced $29.95 and $39.95, and a bedspread, at $149.
“The collection for H&M is the essence of Versace,” Donatella Versace stated. “For the collaboration we’ve brought back from the archives, as well as from more recent collections, some of the icons of Versace, such as the bright prints, the Greek key, and daring cuts. I can’t wait to see how H&M’s wide audience will make these pieces their own.”
A complete look — plus price info — in the slideshow.
>> French First Lady Carla Bruni-Sarkozy gave birth to a daughter — her first child with her husband, French President Nicolas Sarkozy — today in Paris. The baby — whose name is unknown — was delivered around 8 p.m. this evening and is the first child born to a ruling French leader since Napoleon. Prior to giving birth, Bruni-Sarkozy had said she will not be releasing baby photos. The child is the fourth for Sarkozy, who has three sons from two previous marriages, while Bruni-Sarkozy, 43, has a son from a previous relationship. [People]
UPDATE: The Sarkozys have named their daughter Giulia, Bruni announced on her official website: "I am deeply touched by the many messages of congratulations that I have received since the birth of our daughter Giulia. On this happy occasion, my husband joins me in expressing our warmest thanks to all those of you who sent us these tokens of your kindness." [HuffPo]
>> The Visionaries: Tom Ford documentary that has been promised for some time now — "You know I've never let anyone film me like this before," Ford tells the cameras — finally has a premiere date.
This Sunday, Oct. 23, at 8 p.m. EDT/PDT on OWN is it: when Ford talks about being laughed at for wanting to make a movie and gives a tour of his design studio. Director Michael Bonfiglio, who followed Ford — all access — from his return to womenswear in September 2010 through this past February when he opened his Los Angeles store, says of filming the designer: "I think the most memorable thing, actually, was when I finally showed Tom a rough cut of the film. I flew to Los Angeles to show it to him, and I was very nervous. Given how particular he is about his work — and especially because he's a filmmaker — I was anticipating leaving the screening with ten pages of notes about things he wanted changed. We screened it at a hotel, and he brought one of his colleagues to watch it with us. I sat a little bit behind him, so I could see his reactions as he watched — and about 10 minutes in, I could tell he was pleased. When it was over, he had a big smile on his face, told me he loved it, and essentially had no notes — aesthetic or otherwise."
The trailer and a few clips from the film, below.
Ford gives a tour of his design studio in London:
Ford talks about why he returned to fashion:
>> In a room strewn with moss and wildflowers deep inside J.Crew HQ earlier today, Madewell presented a collection of highly covetable separates and want-now accessories for Spring 2012. Though denim is still a major focus for the brand — chambray shirts and a new line of workwear-inspired heritage jeans were on display — the real draw for the coming season are the ultra-wearable tops, jackets, skirts, and dresses that effortlessly walk the line between downtown and down home. Silhouettes were straightforward and drawn from a palette of earthy solids, washed-out primaries, graphic stripes, and easy prints. Accessories, too, were super appealing — and a bit more grownup than in seasons past: Candy-hued flats were pointy toed, and there were even peekaboo pumps and refined ankle booties in richly colored suede. An up-close look at Spring 2012 presentation, here in the slideshow.
>> Activewear that hits a highly feminized note is a big story for next season — and Loeffler Randall's Spring 2012 collection manages to strike that sporty-pretty balance perfectly. Here, designer Jessie Randall has mixed tech fabrics like Velcro, mesh, and wetsuit neoprene with natural materials like raffia, leather, and canvas — all in a Fragonard-inspired palette of Popsicle pinks, delicate nudes, and Springtime greens. Silhouettes are easy going with plenty of appeal; amidst Randall's signature twist-knot flats, there are also chunky platforms and high-rise pumps as well as a new round-peg heel shape. Also in the mix: metallic polka-dots, textural snakeskin, and a nice dose of contrast neon. Click through to see the whole collection, now.
>> Fresh off dressing Michelle Obama for a state dinner with South Korea's president and first lady last Thursday, Doo-Ri Chung has been signed for an upcoming Macy's collaboration.
Chung's collection, which hits Macy's for eight weeks starting Feb. 15, will include her signature draped jersey, knitwear, and art-inspired prints on short- and maxi-length dresses, leggings, blouses, and trench coats, priced $39 to $159. “The customer is very different from whom we’ve catered to before, but I really didn’t have to adapt. Macy’s wanted to keep the design level high. I didn’t feel the challenge was very different,” Chung said.
Chung is the fifth designer to collaborate with Macy's; although, the retailer would not disclose any designer it is working with past Chung, officials did note the series is resonating and will continue through at least 2012 with other designers.
>> It's no secret that Waris Ahluwalia is into craftsmanship. The jewelry in his House of Waris line has always been made using traditional techniques, with everything — right down to the chains on the pendants — fashioned completely by hand. It should come as no surprise then, that Ahluwalia's debut scarf collection employs that same dedication to history and artisanal techniques. Superfine cashmere is hand-loomed and hand-embroidered in a precise honeycomb "Kundun" pattern, handwoven silks and gauzy silk-cotton are batik-dyed, block-printed, hand-dyed, or silk-screened, and hems are all neatly finished by hand. It's not just the attention to detail or the heirloom fabrics that make this new collection of scarves so appealing, however — it's also the gorgeous color combinations and striking graphic patterns. Though meant to be unisex (or, as Waris says, "We don't believe in unisex, just more sex"), it's easy to imagine these pretty prints and super-soft fabrics evolving into a collection of dresses, skirts, and blouses. Waris's next project, perhaps? It's a suggestion the designer seems to have heard before, but if it's in the works, he's not talking. When pressed, his answer is a shrug, a wry smile, and a quiet: "I hope not."
Click through the slideshow for an up-close look at the first season of House of Waris scarves, available online now at Barneys.com, as well as at Barneys New York, Beverly Hills, Dover Street Market, and Colette. Plus, a look at the House of Waris Fall 2011 jewelry.