Alber Elbaz, Lanvin Designer Who Became Unlikely Face of The Once Obscure Brand, Is Stepping Down

Announced today, Alber Elbaz – who became the unlikely face of the once obscure brand 14 years ago – is leaving Lanvin, a 126 year old brand started by Jeanne Lanvin who initially started making clothes for her daughter Marie-Blanche de Polignac. The clothes started gaining the attention and a heritage brand was born. Who's going to fill Elbaz's shoes? – Who knows, we're still speculating on who take Raf Simons' place after leaving Dior last week. Could it be Elbaz?  

Read Our Round-Up Review of Paris Fashion Week 2015

Again, I will have to touch upon what makes this particular round unique to the industry and important for fashion. But honesty, do I actually need to make an argument concerning Paris and its total domination of conceptual fashion? OK, here’s an argument for you: Raf Simons, Rick Owens, Rei Kawakubo, Yohji Yammamoto, Dries Van Noten, Martin Margiela, Junya Wattanabe, Olivier Rousteing, and need I continue? A lot happens at Paris: some bad, some good, and some utterly transcendent. It’s too much to write about really. It’s the longest of the fashion weeks and it can be easy to forget about incredible shows mere days after they happened. Today as I am baffled yet excited over the announcement of Demna Gvasalia of Vetements being named creative director to Balenciaga while former Balenciaga godhead Nicolas Ghesquiere continues to alter the fabric of what we know to be Louis Vuitton, I almost forgot that Rick Owens put on the funniest and most conceptual collection of the week. So another season is over, and the buying begins. See you at the menswear shows. Click here to read the full review. Text by Adam Lehrer. 

Gloss Explores The Glamorous and Dangerous Work of Chris von Wangenheim

The first monograph on notorious photographer Chris von Wangenheim, whose shocking work epitomized the glamour and excess of the 1970s and reflected the fashionable underworld living life on the edge. Between the years 1968 and 1981, photographer Chris von Wangenheim shocked the world with a body of work that explored sex, violence, and danger in the realm of high fashion. Von Wangenheim’s dark photographs were emblematic of the time—an era that encompassed Deep Throat, the sexual revolution, punk, and porn—and continually challenged the viewers’ taste by its stylized depictions of suggestive (and often harrowing) narratives. His images appeared in every top fashion publication—including Vogue, Harper’s Bazaar, Vogue Italia, and Interview—and he produced unforgettable campaigns for Dior and Valentino until he died in a car accident at age 39. This book, the first monograph on von Wangenheim’s career, contains over two hundred provocative and iconic images from this tumultuous era, including never-before-seen outtakes from memorable shoots with such supermodels as Christie Brinkley, Lisa Taylor, and the late Gia Carangi. Drawing on interviews with models, editors, art directors, and photographers who were influenced by him, the Padilhas revive von Wangenheim’s explosive depictions of the glamour and excess of the 1970s for a contemporary audience and reveal how his work continues to inform fashion imagery today. Click here to preorder the book. 

Inspiration Dior

A this one to the list of the growing phenomenon of designer retrospectives being held around the world. Inspiration Dior, an exhibition at the Pushkin Museum in Moscow, explores the birth of the legendary fashion house. Christian Dior was born in the seaside town of Granville on the coast of France, the second of the five children of Maurice Dior, a wealthy fertilizer manufacturer and his wife.  His family had hopes that the young Dior would become a diplomat, but his artistic sensibilities would obviously prevail.  In 1947 his 'new look' collection is established and the House of Dior is born. The exhibition explore not only Dior, but the inspiration behind Dior, guiding the visitor "through the Dior artistic creative sources of fashion and its links to history, nature, painting, sculpture, drawing, photography and film. It reveals how an idea, a feeling, an era, a garden, a perception or even a smell can instill an idea in the heart and mind, giving rise to a unique creation." Inspiration Dior is on view until July 24 2011.


Icon of 1940s Fashion: Ingrid Bergman

Ingrid Bergman is stunning when when she appears on the silver screen in the 1942 classic Casablanca, and the same in Hitchcock's 1946 masterpiece Notorious. Bergman was not only an icon of the silver screen, but an icon of fashion in a decade when the world was at war. In the 1940s the fashion houses of an occupied France were struggling with limited resources, a fabric shortage, and the rise of competing American fashion houses. In 1940s style was an experiment in sartorial renunciation - an "expression of circumstances" as opposed to frivolity. In 1947 Christian Dior introduced the New Look collection - a ‘make do and mend’ approach to fashion that didn't comprise "ideals of beauty, femininity and luxury." Ingrid Bergman was a life long fan of Dior - her fitted suits,  pencil skirts, subtle accessories, and a slightly androgynous charm helped define the era.

A new book, Forties Fashion:From Siren Suits to the New Look, Jonathan Walford, founder of the Fashion History Museum of Canada, "is an essential sourcebook" of 1940s fashion; "a glorious celebration of everything from practical attire for air raids to street and anti-fashion."  Around 250 illustrations reveal the wide range of fashions and styles that emerged throughout the Second World War, in Europe, North America, Australasia and Japan. Including period advertisements, images of real clothes, and first-hand accounts from contemporary publications.