Tag Archives: Designers

New Paris Exhibit on Jeanne Lanvin Illustrates the French Designer’s Exquisite Elegance

Eric Wilson is InStyle’s Fashion News Director. Sit front row at Fashion Week with him by following him on Twitter (@EricWilsonSays) and Instagram.

Jeanne Lanvin was the founder of the oldest surviving fashion house in Paris, with its roots as a millinery shop beginning in 1889, though her place in history has never been acknowledged with quite the fanfare of her early 20th century contemporaries, women with big personalities like Coco Chanel, Elsa Schiaparelli, or Madame Vionnet.

A new exhibition that opened at the Palais Galliera during Paris Fashion Week seeks to rectify that omission in a somewhat unusual way, in that the museum’s general curator, Olivier Saillard, worked in close collaboration with Alber Elbaz, the current artistic director of Lanvin. Contrary to what you might expect, there is not a direct comparison of the historic and contemporary versions of Lanvin, but instead a sincere exploration of only the historic side. In a way, that becomes more interesting, because even most fashion professionals have never had the opportunity to see the marvelous decorations Jeanne Lanvin created herself. At the same time, the exhibition shows clearly the roots of Elbaz’s designs, his use of tulle, frayed edges, and unique placement of embroideries.

Encountering an exquisite black and white ball gown with a slash of red abstract embroidery on one side of the bodice, the thought occurs that it could have been from one of Elbaz’s recent collections, but the year was 1939. A portrait of Odette Alfano by Albert Braïtou-Sala wearing the dress shows just how sensational it must have looked.

RELATED: Lanvin Makes the #PFW Paparazzi Circus Tolerable

“If you were to ask me for the picture of French elegance, I would say Jeanne Lanvin, particularly in the 1930s,” said Saillard at a preview on Friday. “To me, she was the combination of elegance and, this is probably not the right word, but boring.”

By that, he means that Lanvin, to the best of our knowledge, was never one to make a spectacle of herself, nor did her designs broadcast ostentation. She was most widely known for the elegance of her embroideries and in fact was running three embroidery workshops by the mid 1920s. Many of her designs incorporated floral or animal motifs rendered in crystal embellishments. There is a gorgeous black dress with a big silver bow depicted in Swarovski crystals, for example, and another from 1928 with a bird in flight along the bodice, one of its wings extending all the way up the strap of the dress.

PHOTOS: Runway Looks We Love: Lanvin

My Life in Ten Seconds: Designers John Targon and Scott Studenberg of Baja East

Meet Scott Studenberg and John Targon, the charismatic boys behind the next “It” label Baja East. The lifestyle brand embodies a cool global aesthetic that bridges inspiration from the Far East with the laid back ease from the West Coast and New York’s street sensibility (Gwen Stefani counts herself as a fan). And with New York Fashion Week fall/winter 2015 shows rapidly approaching, we got up close and personal with both designers, and had them answer a quick survey of questions that delve into their new collection (no spoilers, promise) and their personal lives—that takes all of 10 seconds to read.

What word describes your fall/winter 2015 collection?

Scott: Oasis.

John: Sun-bleached.

What are you listening to right now?

Scott: ’90s angst, like Collective Soul, Matchbox 20, Alanis Morissette, Foo Fighters, The Cranberries, Cheryl Crow.

John: K. Michelle.

Where did you go in preparation for your fall/winter 2015 collection?

Scott: I was inspired by my previous travels. We created a textile and knit inspired by this rug I bought in Marrakech that we bartered for 100 bucks.

John: The Rothko exhibit.

The last drink I had was…

Scott: “I Am Cozy” from Cafe Gratitude in LA

John: “Killer X” from Liquiteria

What job would you be doing if you weren’t a fashion designer?

Scott: A yoga instructor on a deserted island in Thailand.

John: Tae Kwon Do instructor.

Where would you go first in NYC if you were a tourist?

Scott: Sex and the City bus tour.

John: West Village.

What is your favorite work of art?

Scott: Ross Bleckner’s Hummingbirds in 2002.

John: “Frontier Fronting” by Delia Brown.

Who’s your favorite superhero?

Scott: Storm from X-Men. She can fly, control the weather, and has major hair and a major outfit. And she has great skin.

John: Batman.

What’s the first thing you do in the morning?

Scott: In New York, I immediately make coffee and gluten-free oatmeal and try not to speak to anybody before then. In LA, I go to the gym and read my emails on the elliptical or StairMaster.

John: Give my boyfriend a good morning kiss.

Who did you design your first piece for?

Scott: For us. We had these handwoven one-of-a-kind ceremonial skirts we sourced from Bali that we constructed into sleeveless Bajas.

John: For myself.

What’s your favorite quote of all time?

Scott: (Created with actual receipts) “Show me the receipts.” — Whitney Houston

John: “Hearts are wild creatures, that’s why our ribs are cages.”

RELATED: My Life in Ten Seconds: Designer Wes Gordon

What Costumes Won Big for Film and Television This Year? Inside the Costume Designers Guild Awards

One of the reasons we love our favorite films and television shows is the costuming—and the top designers were honored at the 16th annual Costume Designers Guild Awards over the weekend. Held at the Beverly Hilton Hotel in Los Angeles, California, stars like Kerry Washington, Tony Goldwyn, Olivia Munn, Mindy Kaling, and Kiernan Shipka came out to celebrate the event, which was hosted by Scandal‘s Joshua Malina. The Guild handed out competitive awards for costume design excellence in seven categories for film, television, and commercial work, with the costumers behind Blue Jasmine, 12 Years a Slave, The Hunger Games: Catching Fire, House of Cards, Downton Abbey, and Behind the Candelabra all taking home top honors.

This year, five-time Academy Award nominee Amy Adams was honored with the Lacoste Spotlight Award, which honors an actor whose talent and career personifies an enduring commitment to excellence, including a special awareness of the role and importance of costume design. ”I just had such an amazing privilege working with so many extraordinary costume designers and so many wonderful costume departments, and I’ve learned so much,” Adams says. ”[Costume designers] have taught me that clothing is a language, but that costume is an art… I am so, so lucky to work with amazing artists.”

Additionally, writer, producer, and director Judd Apatow was recognized with the Distinguished Collaborator Award for his support of costume design and creative partnerships with costume designers. “I feel like this is really more for all the costume designers that I’ve worked with over the years,” Apatow tells InStyle. “They really work with us to create these characters.” Congratulations to all the night’s big winners!

Want more photos from this week’s parties? Look through our gallery to see some of your favorite celebrities out and about town! 

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Reporting by Brianna Deutsch