>> In the five short seasons she's been designing shoes, stylist Tabitha Simmons has shod women from Julianne Moore — just this week — to Kate Moss for her wedding rehearsal dinner. The Fall 2011 collection — which just became available for pre-order — features a lizard pump that has already graced the feet of Kate Middleton, and overall has a decidedly English feeling. “Like rockabilly shoes,” Simmons says of her inspirations for the season's 49 styles, “but — more gothic.” See — and shop — the collection in the slideshow.
Posts for August 18th 2011
>> Coco Chanel would have marked her 128th birthday tomorrow, and though she's been gone for just over 40 years now, new allegations keep popping up about her life. One upcoming biography, out this November, recently made headlines for positing that Chanel did drugs and was bisexual, and now another biography — just out this week — alleges that Chanel was an anti-Semite and a Nazi spy for Germany's Abwehr military intelligence organization.
Citing evidence culled from archives around the world — and recently declassified documents — author Hal Vaughan makes such claims in Sleeping with the Enemy: Coco Chanel's Secret War. The book was spurred by an accidental find in France's national police archive, Vaughan says: "I was looking for something else and I come across this document saying 'Chanel is a Nazi agent, her number is blah, blah, blah and her pseudonym is Westminster.' I look at this again and I say, 'What the hell is this?' I couldn't believe my eyes! Then I really started hunting through all of the archives, in the United States, in London, in Berlin and in Rome and I come across not one, but 20, 30, 40 absolutely solid archival materials on Chanel and her lover, Baron Hans Gunther von Dincklage, who was a professional Abwehr spy,"
Vaughan also suggests that Chanel's alleged anti-Semitism caused her to capitalize on laws permitting the expropriation of Jewish property — allowing her to gain control of the Chanel perfume lines from the Jewish-born Wertheimer brothers, who'd helped make her Chanel No. 5 a worldwide best-seller.
In response to the book's allegations of anti-Semitism, Chanel released a statement: "Such insinuations cannot go unchallenged. [Coco Chanel] would hardly have formed a relationship with the family of the owners or counted Jewish people among her close friends and professional partners such as the Rothschild family, the photographer Irving Penn or the well-known French writer Joseph Kessel had these really been her views. It is unlikely."
"We also know that she and Churchill were close friends for a long time. She apparently approached him about acting as an intermediary between the Allies and the Germans for a peace settlement known as Operation Modelhut. No one knows for sure exactly what happened or what her role was to be. There are several different versions and it will no doubt always remain a mystery."
As for Chanel's relationship with alleged Nazi spy Baron Hans Gunther von Dincklage, Chanel noted: "We know for a fact that she had a relationship during the war with a German aristocrat she had met in Paris in the Thirties. The timing of this romance with a German was unfortunate even if Baron Von Dincklage's mother was English and their relationship started before the war."
>> Stack it up with the latest Lulu Frost for J.Crew collection, available in stores and online today. Inspired by Lulu Frost designer Lisa Salzer's personal collection of antique brooches, belt buckles and pins, the capsule features a total of 14 Art Deco-influenced pieces — all in bright hues with sparkly Czech crystal accents. There are several high-gloss resin bangles (perfect for layering), a selection of colorful stone-and-crystal pendants, and a trio of elegantly geometric earrings.
Ranging in price from $45 to $135, the collection marks the second collaboration for Lulu Frost and J.Crew — a four-piece capsule was offered last year, for Holiday 2010. Click through to see the new line in its entirety.
>> For Spring 2012, Club Monaco looked to California for inspiration, taking their easy-wearing clothing on a roadtrip straight down the Pacific Coast Highway. There's Northern Californian-coziness for January — loose-knit sweaters, ankle-grazing skirts, quilted jackets — and for March, LA-ready bohemian looks that come in the form of peasant tops and light-wash flared jeans. Of course, there's still plenty of that polished-cool the brand is known for; sturdy peacoats, downtown leathers, and lots of quirky-pretty prints. Click through for a look at the whole collection, hitting stores starting in January 2012.
Images courtesy of Club Monaco
The limited-edition Giambattista Valli for Macy's collection includes cocktail dresses, skirts, blouses, light jackets, edgy pants, and graphic tees, all of which stick to a mainly red and black palette, with touches of gold, gray, and fuchsia. Alongside bold prints and color, Valli worked with feminine fabrics, lace, tweed, brocade, faux fur, and point d’esprit tulle.
The collection bows Oct. 26 both in 225 Macy's stores and on the retailer's website, and runs $50 to $150.
Already, Macy's has designers lined up for next Spring, according to Martine Reardon, EVP of marketing and advertising: “Look for us to be doing new things in the spring. We’re looking at other apparel categories. We’re also looking at shoes, handbags and jewelry. Anything is possible for the future.”