Posts tagged ‘tim gunn’

April 29, 2011

Much Ado about Nothing: The Royal Wedding as a fashion moment. (Don’t be a drag, just be a Queen)


With all the fuss made about  the dress that Kate Middleton would wear –ok, let’s be honest, the unbearable hype form the networks–I expected some kind of wow moment.

No, not the wow moment that every network hack keeps telling me I really did experience. I happen to be watching ABC News with Tina Brown, Tim Gunn (now a professional fashion sycophant/ gay Stepin Fetchit lap dog for hire), Diane Sawyer and Barbara Walters. So invested is ABC in the coverage of the wedding, so many on-air hours and television specials devoted to the hype,  that one could hardly expect anyone present to tell the truth about the bride: she looks OK, and nothing more.

Truth be told, sister and maid of honor Pippa provided the only wow fashion moment. And I mean WOW, as in she completely upstaged the bride!

Princess Katherine’s dress is demure, tasteful, and  reminds one of Grace Kelly’s. That, my dears, is polite chit chat for BORING. Chelsea Clinton–think about that–made for a much more beautiful bride.  Did someone as vulgarly American as Ivanka Trump not look about the same  in a modest dress for her conservative Jewish wedding? Katherine is a beautiful woman and would have looked good in a paper bag. This was a designer paper bag.

Perhaps you may not be able to fault the craftsmanship of the Alexander McQueen gown, but you can certainly fault the timidity of its vision. Speculation was that Sarah Burton, who now heads McQueen, was chosen because of the brand’s ability to balance well researched historical references with an exquisite theatrical  aesthetic.  For all the talk about what a great tribute this dress is to Mr. McQueen, he was  a man known neither for his timidity in life nor especially in his designs.

See Ms. Burton’s most recent designs for the label and then look at this dress again and then you will understand my utter disappointment.  Given the ability of the house to produce an intricate patterned bodice, the bodice  of the dress is a pure waste of the McQueen aesthetic.

I cannot speak for him–unlike the ABC anchors and the demi monde of journalists/sycophants–but I will say that for me, all of this was much ado about nothing.

But nothing may just be the point. A tasteful, understated and arguably age inappropriate dress may indeed serve both an economic and political purpose. England is going through tough economic times and a too-lavish gown might give the impression that the monarchy is out of touch with the hardships facing everyone but it. (Prince Charles doesn’t  put the toothpaste on his own toothbrush. That’s someone else’s  taxpayer funded job.)

On a personal level for Catherine, a commoner–though from  a “pull yourself up from your boot straps pushy/savvy/socially ambitious family”–a reverential, tasteful  (and  borderline matronly) dress can signal that she intends to straddle the  fine line of ascending to the ranks of royalty without betraying her commoner lineage. We have already heard how she intends to live with Prince William without the help of any staff and even do her own cooking and laundry.

It wouldn’t take much imagination to hear the palace announce that she plans on reworking this wedding dress into a housecoat.

The Duchess of Cambridge, as she will be known–according to British protocol, she will not be able to formally call herself Princess Catherine because she was not born a princess–may share more than a milliner with Lady Gaga. She may be humming to herself  “don’t be a drag, just be a Queen,” just loud enough to drown out the noise of the spin cycle.

Tom Kolovos is Editor In Chief of aControlledSubstance.

 


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March 5, 2011

Lady Gaga wears Haider Ackermann on the cover of Vogue (Rachel Zoe wears out her welcome at the Academy Awards)


Yes, the backroom deals in the world of high fashion make trading derivatives on Wall Street look like a silly game for the eTrade baby. Let me explain.

Haider Ackermann is the best designer you’ve probably never heard of. He’s the Colombian born, Belgian trained designer that Karl Lagerfeld favors to take over at  the helm of Chanel. Tilda Swinton has already made a splash on the red carpet at the Cannes Film Festival in his clothes. He is most certainly  on the very short list of designers to replace John Galliano at Dior.   Speculation will surely be running rampant today at the  showing of his Fall 2011 collection in Paris.

One of the most astounding missteps made by Rachel Zoe at the Academy Awards –apart from arranging the  gluttonous onstage costume changes–  was excluding Haider from her repetoire of gowns for Anne Hathaway. Ackermann is where fashion is headed and it would have said a lot for Ms. Zoe to be ahead of the curve. And ahead of the curve is where she sorely needs to be as it was recently documented that Ms. Zoe copied a dress she styled for Teen Vogue a few years back and passed it off as her own in her  laughably derivative debut runway collection. (All hail the next Tory Burch!)

So who needed to see the tiresome Oscar de la Renta (Raf Simons rip off) dress? The retro Vivienne Westwood ? The mothballed “archival” Valentino? The obligatory Tom Ford?

Not I.

Given that  Cartier paid Ms. Hathaway $750,000 dollars to wear its jewelry at the Academy Awards this year, you’d think she could afford to pay Ms. Zoe to do her homework.

At this point you have to feel a bit sorry for James Franco. Did he at least get a free “I’m with shady” t shirt for his hosting duties? Now at least we have a plausible explanation as to why Ms. Hathaway was over the moon onstage while Mr. Franco was under a rock.

Then again, perhaps it is Gwyneth Paltrow who should be complaining the loudest, not I. Louis Vuitton only paid her  $500,000 to wear its earrings and broach  on the red carpet. (Unfortunately, it occurred to no one to pay her not to sing.)  So the next time Tim Gunn interviews Valentino with Ms. Hathaway on the red carpet he can stop pretending he doesn’t know what “archival” means (DUDE, who are you kidding? Were you on the faculty at Parsons or at Carson’s?) and start asking “who are you wearing and how much were you paid?”

Kind of makes  one want to gag, right?

At any rate, it is thrilling to finally see (the all too often exurb oriented cover of American) Vogue make me go gaga.


Click here to see the entire  Spring  2011 Haider Ackermann on Style.com