9 Spring 2013 Trends

The calendar says it’s Spring, but the weather is telling us something entirely different here in the mid-Atlantic.  We had snow fall (I swear it was the most snow we’ve seen all year) on Monday, but weather is calling for 60’s this weekend.  While the weather is still making up it’s mind, let’s take a look at some of the Spring Trends for 2013 strait off the runway as well as wearable looks that you can buy now.

Stripes: Thick and thin, black and white and colored stripes were everywhere from ball gowns to long-sleeved sweaters.

Runway: Michael KorsMichael Kors

Wearable: J. Crew

Stripes from J. Crew

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101 Fashion Tips and Tricks every Gal Should Know

I’m a list maker.  A task master, if you will.  So when I come across lists on line, I scoop them up, especially when they are as helpful as this one, full of useful tips and tricks.  This one comes from Fashionista and details some unique and creative ways to tackle fashion issues, look your best and keep your clothes in great shape.  I hope you find a useful tip or two… or twenty. Enjoy!

101. Despite what it says on the tag, cashmere is best washed by hand. To dry it, use a salad spinner, which releases excess water in seconds.

100. Use white wine to remove red wine stains.

99. Wash new jeans twice before taking them to the tailor. Why? Because jeans will always shrink in length when washed.

98. To stop angora or mohair from shedding, fold the garment and place it into a zip-top bag and freeze it for at least three hours.

97. Remove odors from vintage or thrift clothing by spritzing them with a mixture of one part vodka, two parts water.

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JCP Shops

If you watched the Oscars last weekend, you noticed the plethora of JCP advertisements (shortened from J.C. Penney).  The company once known for selling washing machines and reasonably priced fashions, is rising to the challenge that many of their competitors have faced in the past — losing customers and the quest to bring them back.

Duro lounge

In March, the retailer will open 100 boutique-like shops in an effort to reinvent its stores and shopping experience.  Walking in the doors now, one will find designers such as Nanette Lepore, Levi’s, Liz Claborne and Izod; Mid-March Joe Fresh will drop anchor.  Later in the year, Martha Stewart (outcome dependent on their on-going court battle with Macy’s), Jonathan Adler, Michael Graves (formerly at Target), Carter’s, Cosmopolitan intimate apparel and Giggle baby will open in-store.

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Fall/Winter 2013-14 Trends

Some pieces you see on the runway are completely conceptual, meaning they most likely won’t get picket up by a store or boutique for customers to purchase.  These are usually over-the-top ideas, conceptualized by the designer and brought to life for a one-time only appearance during Fashion Week.  And then there are the wearable pieces.  The shows where elegant dresses and beautiful shoes take their turn, and you leave with a feeling of “I’m happy to be a woman.”  With New York Fashion week officially wrapped and London Fashion Week taking place as I type, there were a few trends that I noticed on the runways last week.

1) Accessories: Hats and Elbow Length Gloves: From baseball-style caps at Herve Leger to fedoras at Nicole Miller, hats were one of the top accessories on the runway. Approximately half of the shows I attended in New York showcased elbow length leather gloves.  Most were long and sleek as seen at J. Crew, but a few had an edge such as the ones seen at Kenneth Cole, reminiscent of a fisherman.

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NYFW Day Two in Photos

The second day of New York Fashion Week kicked off and show goers were not deterred by the snow.  Check out some photos from the shows and around New York City on days 1 and 2.

NYFW Take One

Tuesday night kicked off the unofficial start to Fashion Week with the American Heart Association Red Dress event, but yesterday was the first full day of New York Fashion Week shows.  From BCBG Max Azria to Tadashi Shoji to Kenneth Cole, the day was a great start to the Fall/Winter 2013 Collections.

All of the designers who show during this Fashion Week are walking their collections for the Fall/Winter 2013 season.  Buyers from stores such as Macy’s, Neiman Marcus and Nordstorm line the first few rows and decide which pieces they will lock down for their store.  This allows the designer to manufacture the clothes in time and have them in the stores at the end of the Summer months and ready for consumers to purchase.

Tadashi was beautiful and wearable.  There were many a “Red Carpet” gown that walked down the runway, but also several day/evening dresses with velvet and lace embellishments.  Red, cobalt, black and white were the colors used in his collection (you can see the full line here).  I smiled when the designer walked out to take his bow and was wearing purple (I’m still on cloud nine from the Raven’s win!)

purple designer

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The Price is Right

As a child of the 80’s, I watched the Price is Right once or twice.  The gist of the show was to have contestants guess the amount of the showcase or item, where the guesser couldn’t approximate an amount that totaled more than the amount the item was worth.  Many guests would bet $1 if they thought the previous bids were way over priced.  Other than that, I remember the host saying at the end of every show “and don’t forget to spay and neuter your animals!”  The show was full of excitement and happiness, that the viewer could feel emanating out of the screen.

Few things have changed on the show. There’s a new host, but still the same level of glee and anticipation jumps through the TV with each episode.  Until now, I had never known or met anyone who appeared on the show.  Like I said, until now…

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Fall Fashions in Flux

It’s that weird weather time of year, when some night’s dip down into the 40’s but it can warm up to the 80’s by mid-afternoon.  So, what’s a stylish young woman to do? The best advice is always to layer, layer, layer on pieces that are easily removed. But I always get a kick out of women here in Washington, DC this time of year.  One commuter will head out in ear muffs and a heavy winter coat, while the next person you see will be stomping towards the metro in flip-flops.  I always get a chuckle out of the stark contrast of pre-Winter wears that walk the streets this time of year.

The February collections in New York City suggested that the Fall Fashion Trends would be items such as floral, leather, lace, tweeds, chic sportswear and military inspired looks with a hint of fur accents sprinkled throughout.  Colors this Fall include: emerald-green, platinum grey, espresso brown, deep orange, burgundy and the “rule breaking” white in winter, along with the color combination of navy and black, all of which have a Fall undertone and warmer feel, indicative of the cooler weather.  Leatric Eiseman, Executive Director of the Pantone Color Institute says “By playing to consumers’ practical side with versatile neutrals, and boosting their confidence with bold, spirited hues, this skillfully balanced palette has something for everyone.”

So, the question is: what to wear now, when it’s technically Fall but feels more like Spring?

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Fashion Through the Decades

Experts say Fashion is cyclical; everything comes back around at some point or another and below we see how the industry of textiles has changed through the ages.  Most often, events, such as war or a downtrodden economy will have an effect on the way designers create their collections for the year and drives consumer purchasing.  Let’s take a visual look at the history of fashion.

The Last Show at Lincon Center

For the last event at Lincoln Center, Rachel Zoe did a second showing of her Spring/Summer Collection 2013 exclusive for American Express Cardholders.  Starting on time, a rarity during the crazed excitement of Fashion Week, the stylist, author and designer took a seat on the runway with Prabal Gurung for a Q&A before the show kicked off.

Q: For whom is this collection made?

A: Rachel stepped outside of her comfort zone to design for the person she wants to be:  one who is cool, effortless and embraces who she is with confidence. The wearer loves fashion, but isn’t a (fashion) victim.  She wants people to buy a leather jacket from the collection that will last 20 years, not just one season.

Q: How did you get into styling?

A: Rachel tells a story about her very first client, an 8-year old boy who was her neighbor when she was a child.  Everyday, the boy wore soccer clothes to school. One afternoon, while the boy was out of the house, she snuck up to his room and created his wardrobe for the week, laying out his clothes, shoes and belts for Monday through Friday.

Q: How did you get into design?

A: After collaborating with other designers, Rachel decided to go out on her own and try her hand at creating her own line. While most designers bring in a stylist to put the runway looks together, Rachel fills both roles; designing the clothes and putting together the looks before the models saunter down the runway.

Q: Where do you find inspiration?

A: Laughing, she jokes that she wishes she was one who could look at a bumblebee in Morocco and from that one moment, create an entire collection, but that’s not how she percolates her creative juices.  Her inspiration comes from the likes of Jane Birkin and Bridget Bardot.  Once a piece is created, it sees many rounds of changes, updates and edits before the final sign-off, rendering it complete.

Q: On what are you currently working?

A: Rachel is shooting the 5th Season of her Bravo show called “The Rachel Zoe Project” and working on her second book due out next year.

Q: Where can women purchase your collection?

A. The collection is available at Neiman Marcus, Bloomingdale’s, Bergdorf Goodman, Nordstrom and several boutiques around the country.

Q: Where do you see yourself in five-years?

A: In five years, Rachel sees herself with a sibling for Skyler (her 18-month old son with husband Rodger Berman), a little beach and a lot of family time.  She adds that she never mapped any of this out, calling it “one big happy accident.”

The two designers moved their chairs off the runway and took their seats, with Deb Curtis, VP of entertainment marketing and sponsorships at American Express.  The show opened with Breathe by Delilah featuring Liam Bailey and the models began their walk in beautiful, flowing, detailed pieces, evoking a beachy, carefree feel.   The show gave the American Express Card Members a look at 6 pieces, which weren’t in the initial runway show, truly giving them “behind the scenes access.”  Walking out of the tents, once could witness the workers breaking down the runways, check-in desks and exhibits, signaling that all good things must truly come to an end.

Until February…