Bridget Foley’s Diary: Donna Karan, Fashion’s Cassandra

“For some reason beyond my comprehension, stores want us to ship them six-ply cashmere sweaters and double-face coats by July 15. Of course, that’s fine with the consumer, because she’s learning to buy on sale by Oct. 15….The industry has to come together, to support one another and sell the right clothes at the right time of year. — 1997
“We’re all in trouble. We have to collaborate to create the kind of change [we need] to get out of these waters that we’ve created for ourselves. Nobody else did this. We did this.” — 2009
“What I think we’ve got to do is lower the volume on the press shows….Why do we need to blast out five months in advance rather than when it goes into the store?” — 2010
 “When it’s snowing out, they’re looking for a pair of boots or a warm coat [and can’t find them]. That’s why I started Urban Zen. I couldn’t take it anymore. If they’re not going to do it, I was going do it.” — 2016
Donna Karan — fashion’s own flesh-and-blood Cassandra. The Trojan princess was doomed to foresee the future, its dire straights perhaps preventable if only people listened and believed. Yet her cries

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Bridget Foley’s Diary: Donna Goes Off-topic

A conversation with Donna Karan is never linear or, goodness knows, dull. Though the main purpose of this interview to discuss slower fashion in the post COVID-19 world, Donna started elsewhere, with her early academic challenges — she failed typing and draping. Yes, the Jersey Queen failed draping. But she didn’t linger there, moving on through assorted digressions, including these tidbits.
 
God Save Their Queen
“I was a kid at Anne Klein when I met the Queen of England in Bloomingdale’s, in the summer with my winter clothes on. She was coming to New York and she came to Bloomingdale’s. I almost had a heart attack. I had to go and practice with Calvin and Ralph: ‘It’s so nice to meet you, Your Majesty.’ I will never forget that as long as I live. When she came up, we weren’t allowed to look at her until she put her hand down. We had a complete practice to do it. I was in the subway in a blue suit and a hat and gloves because I had to wear gloves. I had to go on the subway because I didn’t want my clothes to get wrinkles. So this guy says, ‘Hey lady, you look

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Bridget Foley’s Diary: Chanel’s COVID-19-Era Price Hikes

Price hikes at a time of global economic devastation? It’s happening in luxury. As reported by WWD’s Tianwei Zhang on Tuesday, with luxury shopping reopened in China, some brands are increasing their prices, none more dramatically than Chanel. Rumors across social media that significant increases would soon go into effect sent shoppers racing to Chanel outposts in Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou and Hangzhou in search of pre-markup acquisitions.
Chanel confirmed the price hikes to WWD. They range from 5 to 17 percent in euros, and apply to “a small portion” of the house’s handbag and small leather goods offerings. The changes go into effect over the next couple of days in China, and are not limited to China. In keeping with Chanel’s policy of global price consistency instituted several years ago, adjustments have been or will be instituted around the world. Any increases above 17 percent reflect currency and exchange rate fluctuations. The price hikes apply only to the iconic 11.12 and 2.55 handbags as well as the the Boy, Gabrielle and Chanel 19 bags and some small leather goods. Prices on seasonal bags, ready-to-wear and shoes will not be impacted, nor will fragrance and beauty.
Chanel is not alone in upping prices

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Bridget Foley’s Diary: Fisher-Price’s New Spin on Action Heroes

Everyone old enough to remember 9/11 has very specific recollections of that morning. Fisher-Price executive Chuck Scothon was awaiting news of a a press conference for what now seems an eerily prescient product launch — an FDNY action figure. It was an addition to the company’s “Rescue Heroes,” series, sales of which would benefit an FDNY-related charity. The press conference never happened. The action figure did, with Fisher-Price and Toys ‘R’ Us, its partner in the project, upping the philanthropic aspect to 100 percent of sales.
Last week, Fisher-Price and parent company Mattel debuted another Heroes series, an uplifting, feel-good/do-good effort, the timing of which is not accidental. #ThankYouHeroes is the first initiative under Mattel’s new cross-brand Play It Forward platform, focusing on ways to give back to communities in need. The Fisher-Price launch features action-figure heroes of the coronavirus era — doctor, nurse, EMT, delivery worker. Each comes in female and male versions, as well as different skin tones (if not specific ethnicities), a total of 16 total doll options. In addition, there’s a “Little People Community Champions” set, part of an ongoing Fisher-Price line. It’s a lineup of five essential-worker heroes, those noted above, plus a grocery worker. “It’s about saying

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Bridget Foley’s Diary: I.D. Required

Brand identity. Its crystal-clear definition is supposed to be essential to a vibrant business. Particularly so in fashion, or one would think, given its visual nature. Yet at the major brand level in fashion today, clarity of identity is as past tense as the bustle.
Case in point: Givenchy. The brand and Clare Waight Keller officially parted ways on Friday after a single three-year contract. During her tenure, Waight Keller eschewed the boho prettiness she worked at Chloé that got her the job, embracing instead (with some digressions) a harder, Eighties-inspired look with elements of sharp tailoring and some archival riffs. She followed Riccardo Tisci who, over 12 years, elevated Goth to an unlikely level of high chic.
The Waight Keller departure was a long time in coming; rumors had circulated for some time that a re-up for her wasn’t in store once her contract ended. In a piece in Monday’s WWD, Miles Socha noted some of the names in circulation as her successor: Jil Sander’s Luke and Lucie Meier; 1017 Alyx 9SM founder Matthew Williams; Paco Rabanne’s Julien Dossena; Gucci design director Davide Renne. Socha also cited a provocative phrase from the brand’s announcement, that it would soon reveal a new “creative organization.”

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Bridget Foley’s Diary: The COVID-19 Impact Phillip Lim — Time for a Reset

Before Christmas, when no one had yet heard of the deadly coronavirus that would change our lives overnight, Phillip Lim wanted to push reset. Approaching his brand’s 15th anniversary, Lim found himself dealing with issues hardly unique to him — that the pace of fashion, its relentless speed and mind-set of more, had become negative forces in the culture and a drain on our humanity. “What are we doing? Why are we just running this race just to keep up? And what is the goal, what is the finish line?” he shared his soul-searching questions with WWD. Taking a step back “to allow myself the time to think about the act of joyful creation again, not just the hustle,” Lim decided to forego a runway show and instead threw a spirited come-one/come-all house party at his New York store.
Lim acknowledged that shows are expensive to stage and business was already challenged. Now, he and his partner, 3.1 Phillip Lim chief executive officer Wen Zhou, are determined to live their values, which Lim summed up as “humanity first.” But, he acknowledged, looking after employee needs as the industry implodes presents “a Catch 22 — we don’t have a source of income.”
The

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Bridget Foley’s Diary: Conversations on COVID-19

“I have a lot of time on my hands, like everyone,“ Marc Jacobs said last week.
Like millions more of the homebound (or in his case, hotel-bound), Jacobs isn’t on grown-up spring break. For most of us similarly confined, it’s more like house arrest, imposed by common sense, company mandate and, increasingly, by government directive, à la those restrictions now confining the populations of New York State and California in efforts to combat the coronavirus pandemic. Extreme social curtailment leaves many (guardians of children perhaps not so much) with time to ponder how we got here and where we’re going, and it’s scaring the hell out of us.
Last week’s mass shuttering of stores across North America and Europe stunned, contributing to the ghost-town eeriness of all manner of locales, including notoriously people-dense New York City, its public spaces now bleak and largely uninhabited, save for early-morning walkers desperate to maintain that 6-foot human-free radius en route, and the stalwart essential workers who by showing up for work and doing their jobs — stocking and selling in grocery stores and pharmacies; preparing and delivering take-out meals — make it possible for the rest of us to carry on with basic life needs,

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Bridget Foley’s Diary: The COVID-19 Impact Michael Kors Is Optimistic But Nervous, Too

Michael Kors walks the walk. His particular walk gravitates unfailingly to the sunny side of the street; he is as unrelenting an optimist as there is. Typically, Kors has to know that Capri Holdings, which now owns the brand he founded and at which he remains creative director nearly 40 yeas later, is paying the “Michael Kors family” employees whose specific jobs don’t allow for the work-at-home option. Still, he acknowledges that this crisis tests his optimism yet maintains that it has, at its core, a resilience strengthened by the array of challenges he’s overcome through the years. “I’ve ridden a lot of roller coasters,” Kors said.
WWD: Michael, how are you feeling right now?  
Michael Kors: I always feel that no matter how rotten things can seem, I always try to look for the upbeat side of things. Right now, of course, is testing that optimism. But at the same time, everyone thinks I’m just this happy-go-lucky, funny guy. But 39 years in, I’ve ridden a lot of roller coasters, and I’m resilient and nervous at the same time. I’m scared, but at the same time, I believe in the human spirit and I have this roller coaster of emotions;

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Bridget Foley’s Diary: The COVID-19 Impact — Amy Smilovic Invokes ‘Capitalism With Sensitivity’

Amy Smilovic has long been a standard-bearer of independent American fashion executives. She stealthily built her Tibi brand into a contemporary powerhouse with staying power, even after a dramatic shift in creative direction about a decade ago, from sweet girliness to a cleaner, more urbane look. In her two-plus decades in business, Smilovic had navigated major upheavals — 9/11 and the 2008-09 recession — without every laying off a single employee. That run ended last week, when fallout from the coronavirus pandemic forced her to terminate a full 30 percent of her 85-strong work force. It devastated her, and her goal is for the company to emerge from this crisis strong enough to bring those people back. “I believe in capitalism that has sensitivity to it,” Smilovic said.
WWD: This is all stunning, isn’t it?
Amy Smilovic: It’s stunning when you’re measuring time and minutes, when you can’t believe where your head was on Monday versus the previous Friday. It’s insane.
WWD: No one knows where it’s going.
A.S.: No one knows where it’s going. You are left to horrific imagination on how bad it could be. The health stories are devastating, when you read that hospitals are turning away people over 60 in countries

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Bridget Foley’s Diary: Rich People, Do the Right Thing

What’s going on with luxury retail? As in, why is it going on? With every public official and medical and scientific expert out there pleading with people to avoid all nonessential public encounters that require physical interaction closer than that six-foot distance, how can the lords of luxury continue to keep their doors open for business in locales where governments haven’t mandated closure?
People need some of what Walmart sells — food, groceries, pharmaceuticals. Ditto, Target, CVS and Walgreens, all now partnered with the federal government in trying to stem the coronavirus crisis. Workers at such retailers — sales associates, managers, stock people, security, delivery, all of them — are now in the same category as health-care providers: Their work is essential. They are at risk for the greater good, and God willing, their employers are doing everything possible to ensure their good health. (A monetary bonus during or at the end of the crisis would be nice, too.)
But Dior? Chanel? Ralph Lauren? Prada? Nobody needs what they sell; by definition, luxury is a world of want, not need. For what greater good are their retail employees now endangering themselves and, should one become infected, everyone she or he comes in

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Bridget Foley’s Diary: The César Story of Adèle H.

The best walk of Paris Fashion week wasn’t Kendall Jenner or the dual-generation Hadids, or even Naomi Campbell at Kenneth Ize. The best walk was Adèle Haenel, who marched out of Friday night’s César Awards after Roman Polanski won the prize for Best Director for “J’accuse” (English title: “An Officer and a Spy”). “La honte! La honte!” Haenel said while exiting the theater. “Shame! Shame!”
As has now been widely reported, Haenel is the first French actress to have made a sexual abuse claim against a powerful man. A former child actress, in November, she said that she was harassed and touched inappropriately by the director Christophe Ruggia beginning when she was 12 years old. He has denied her accusations. Haenel has since become something of a nucleus for the #MeToo movement in France, where she’s well-known. She’s now set for breakout recognition in the United States, given the buzz around her film “Portrait of a Lady on Fire,” which garnered 10 César nominations, including her own, for Best Actress. It won only one award, for Best Cinematography.
Polanski has been famously and comfortably on the lam from the United States since 1978, when he fled the country prior to sentencing after his guilty plea for drugging and

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Bridget Foley’s Diary: An American Fashion Dream

The days leading up to New York Fashion Week are typically a hotbed of activity in studios across New York, designers refining their clothes and distilling the range down to that perfect runway message.
But on Monday, despite the approach of his first full-scale show this morning, at the restaurant Veronika, there was nothing going on at Adam Lippes’ temporary studio on lower Broadway. Nothing that required his oversight, anyway. No castings, no fittings, no sartorial tweaking.
That’s because Lippes wasn’t around. He was 380 miles away in Fort Erie, Ontario, making good on a long-ago, teenaged vow to act as a pallbearer for the gardener of his family’s vacation house.
Lippes hadn’t seen Walker Dekker since 2003, at Lippes’ mother’s funeral, and was surprised by a November call from the man’s nephew, who’d found him on Google: “My uncle would love to hear from you.” Lippes intended to call, but got busy as one does, and didn’t. The nephew got in touch again in mid-January. About two weeks later, on a Sunday, Lippes picked up the phone and reconnected with the man to whom his younger self had been so close. “Remember our vow,” Dekker said. The following Wednesday, he was dead.
Lippes

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Single Brad, Bridget Jones and royal jokes in front of William: 12 stand out BAFTA moments

The BAFTAs were nearly overshadowed by a diversity row thanks to the all-white acting line-up and lack of female directors – but there were plenty of other talking points on the night.
Entertainment News – Latest Celebrity & Showbiz News | Sky News

ENTERTAINMENT SPECIALS:

Bridget Foley’s Diary: Ed Filipowski, A Great Guy

The office phones almost never ring anymore. On Friday afternoon, Rachna Shah, partner and managing director of p.r. and digital at KCD, called my landline. Ed Filipowski was dead. Over the years, I’d gotten three similarly ominous calls from Ed, about Stephen Sprouse, Alexander McQueen and Ingrid Sischy, each one gone way too early. Now Ed.
 
Ed was a pillar of the industry, a wellspring of strategic innovation and an epicenter of calm and common sense through the subtle evolutionary waves and cataclysmic disruptions of the past 30 years.
 
Those who worked for him, directly or indirectly, noted his incredible investment in their careers. Rachna said that, from the moment he hired her out of school, he was interested in “challenging me and helping me grow.” Charlotte Blechman, now Tom Ford’s chief marketing officer, who never worked at KCD, met Ed when she was at Gucci, a KCD client. “I was blessed enough to have had his magic in my life for the past 25 years,” she said.

Coach’s president Joshua Schulman, also a Gucci alumnus, said that Ed shared valuable lessons on topics as disparate as how to seat a show and where to find July Fourth apple pie in Paris. “But mostly,” Schulman said, “he taught

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Bridget Foley’s Diary: Harry and Meghan, From Grandmother’s Realm They Go

“What family doesn’t have its ups and downs?”
So mused Katharine Hepburn’s Eleanor of Aquitaine after a feisty spat with her husband, Peter O’Toole’s Henry II, in “The Lion in Winter.” I haven’t seen it in years and couldn’t locate the specific clip on YouTube, but if memory serves, Eleanor’s rhetorical query comes after a row in which she calls out the king for sleeping with his daughter-in-law, and then goads him: “do you wonder if I ever slept with your father?” The story also features ample brotherly discord.
Eight hundred-plus years later, another queen called 1992 an “annus horribilis,” Elizabeth II referring to a year of Windsor woes, including two of her sons’ very public marital problems.
Oh, the times may be a-changin’ but not that much when it comes British royal family drama. Since Wednesday, the world has been riveted by Megxit, the announcement by Prince Harry and Meghan Markle that the couple intends to “carve out a progressive new role within this institution” of the British monarchy.
In response, Princes Charles and William are, according to a source first quoted in The Sun (whose usage of language should make every journalist at least a little envious), “incandescent with rage.”
Oh, so much

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Bridget Foley’s Diary: What to Watch? How About Clothes?

As one year and, more powerfully, one decade, roll into the next, it’s human nature to take stock of what has been, and then project ahead. What will the future hold? This week, WWD is looking at what to watch across a range of essential topics — business, politics, tech, retail, and on and on, all essential topics. Successes and failures both grand-scale and small will depend upon how brands respond to the myriad forces shaping and reshaping the industry at once-unimaginable speed.
Still, in all of the conversation around fashion, where it’s been, where it stands now and where it’s going, one very specific element continually gets short shrift: Clothes. Clothes, and our emotional, psychological, sociological connection to them. All of the broad-stroke topics that have defined the industry conversation recently — inclusivity, sustainability, technology, major group dominance and the difficulty of everyone to just stay afloat — are essential topics.
Still, once upon a time, clothes were at the center of fashion, whether in the form of an audacious collection that changed everything, a counterculture look that crossed over to mainstream, a hot item that exploded. The closest we’ve come of late was the ample discussion of the emergence, now

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Bridget Foley’s Diary Fabien Baron: Creativity by the Book

Coffee-table book doesn’t say it. Nor does vanity project, though by its author’s own assessment, “FB Fabien Baron Works, 1983-2019” is a nontraditional self-portrait.
Certainly, the tome, published this fall by Phaidon, is a 400-plus page exploration of the legendary creative director’s psyche, its lavish pages resonant with meaning that runs as deep as the viewer/reader wants to delve into (or project onto) Baron’s personality. It is also a rich visual history of fashion over the past 30 years, both the fashion of fashion, and its intersect with the broader culture. Finally, it is a creative masterwork. Anyone who fancies powerful imagery will be intrigued. For serious creatives, its wealth of exquisite visuals provides diverse worlds to get lost in and, more pragmatically, lesson after lesson on what makes compelling imagery — concept, color use, composition — whether the subject is as simple as the plainest fragrance bottle or as complicated as a densely populated convocation of young-and-beautiful types engaged in wanton revelry.
The book opens with a forward by Baron’s friend and frequent collaborator Kate Moss. In a lovely piece, she credits him with hiring her for her “first real shoot,” with photographer Patrick Demarchelier, and with introducing her to Calvin

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Bridget Foley’s Diary: Proenza Schouler CEO Touts ‘Limitless Potential’ for the Refocused Brand

For Kay Hong, signing on as chief executive officer of Proenza Schouler was all about her belief in the superior talent of the brand’s founding designers Jack McCollough and Lazaro Hernandez. That — and chemistry.
“I said to the Mudrick team, ‘Look, if there’s not a great chemistry between Jack and Lazaro and me in terms of how we view the business and what we think the opportunities are, then this isn’t going to work,” she recalled in a conversation last week that dovetailed with the designers’ exclusive interview with WWD.
She referred to Mudrick Capital Management, which specializes in distressed investments, and is the lead investor in the designers’ buyback of their company from parties including Andrew Rosen, Irving Place Capital ceo John Howard and private equity firm Castanea Partners, with which Ron Frasch was involved.
A couple of marathon days spent getting to know the designing duo and their business convinced her to go for it, and Hong succeeded Judd Crane, whose two-year tenure ended with the buyback. She marked her one-year anniversary in the position earlier this month. It’s been a busy year.
Hong arrived from outside the luxury sector, her prior work focused on small-box specialty retail with companies including

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Bridget Foley’s Diary: Martin Margiela Speaks!

Martin Margiela is back and talking. Thirty years after he first mystified and enthralled fashion with his nonconformist brilliance, and 11 years after he walked away from the industry following his 20th anniversary runway show, the designer is the subject of Reiner Holzemer’s documentary film “Martin Margiela: In His Own Words,” which premieres tonight at the DOC NYC Film Festival. The director’s previous works include films on William Eggleston, Juergen Teller and, most recently, the 2017 “Dries” (as in Van Noten).
Margiela is widely considered one of modern fashion’s most important designers, his influence continuing today in all sorts of arenas — deconstruction, streetwear, repurposed vintage, down-off-the-pedestal haute couture, alternative show venues. Anyone with a casual interest in the edgier aspects of fashion’s recent past should find plenty of interest in the documentary; serious fashion-history obsessives will be all aflutter to hear firsthand the designer’s perspective on his career. Margiela’s conversation volleys between esoteric musings and pragmatic dissection of craft and problem-solving; from the start, he distinguished himself as both renegade creator and skilled artisan. He was also a designer who for two decades navigated the uneasy terrain of a challenging industry, and he offers a brief, stinging assessment of why

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BRIDGET FOLEY’S DIARY: Vera’s Military Salute

Sometimes, cynicism takes a hike. Over three days last week it went wondrously AWOL at Vera Wang’s store on Madison Avenue in Manhattan as the designer and members of her staff too numerous to count focused the company’s attentions on 11 VIP brides. Not of the Hailey Bieber, Hannah Davis, Chelsea Clinton, Lily Aldridge ilk, but VIPs whose names are unfamiliar beyond their own circles. They are all military brides, some in the service themselves, some engaged to military personnel. Some are already married, but circumstances forced them to delay their wedding celebrations.
To celebrate her brand’s 30th anniversary, Wang partnered with Brides Across America, an organization that gifts gowns to military and first-responder brides. Together the two staged a contest that led to 10 couples receiving the extraordinary VIP treatment from Wang, the centerpiece of which is the gifting and fitting of each woman with a Collection wedding look. Playing fly on the wall (albeit an occasionally vocal one) for two of the three days proved very moving for me. It would be impossible for Wang and her fabulous staff to lavish more attention on any bride, no matter how famous. No dress was off limits nor any modifications too

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Bridget Foley’s Diary: Anna’s Family

It started with a forbidden trip to the cafeteria. The unwritten rule at Parsons, back when Anna Sui matriculated, held that design students should not hang out in the lunchroom. “It was considered a bad influence,” Sui recalls, “because you’d mix with everybody else. But guess who was always in the lunchroom?” Rebellious types? Yes. Wildly creative? Yes. Intriguing? You bet. “That’s where I met Steven [Meisel], in the lunchroom.“
Meisel was then a student of the apparently wayward discipline of illustration. After some mess-hall mingling, he invited Sui out dancing that night. She arrived with her then-boyfriend, and Meisel, with “his entourage.” At one point, he beckoned her over to his table and made a suggestion: lose the boyfriend and hang with us. Bye-bye beau, hello lifelong collaborator and friend. “We just started going out every night. My apartment became club central,” Sui says.
The relationship became more than social — Sui would style shoots for Meisel; he encouraged her as she navigated the creation of her own label. That trajectory started with a hiccup: Sui was working for an apparel company called Lenora. Inspired by punk-rock friends who made jewelry that sold at “cool rock stores,” she aspired to the

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Bridget Foley’s Diary Tory Burch: A Woman on the Move

Tory Burch didn’t grow up yearning to be a designer; in college she studied art history rather than fashion. She did grow up conscious of the importance of style, seeing it as representative of, and even integral to, one’s personality. That notion came from her parents, the elegant Buddy and Reva Robinson.
The world in which the Robinsons raised their children pulsed with the elegance of the familiar — pretty, preppy, proper. Burch built her business on an aesthetic that distilled and marketed that orientation. She wanted to address a broad audience, offering obvious good taste of the silky Hermès ilk (her father loved the stuff) but without the stratospheric price tag. A standard concept now, it was quietly subversive among the designer set when Burch established her brand in 2004.
Turns out accessible luxury is but one area in which she was prescient. Other designers who went into business at about the same time were typically younger than Burch, with formal design school training. Often they wanted to launch namesake brands immediately upon graduation. While their aesthetics were often more outré (relatively speaking) and their target markets more luxe-leaning, ironically such designers tended to be more inside-the-box when developing their business

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Bridget Foley’s Diary: InStyle Marks a Milestone

The Big 2-5. With its September print issue, InStyle magazine celebrates its 25th anniversary. The magazine launched just as fashion was in the early throes of its passionate love affair with celebrities of the Hollywood sort, and well into the transition from supermodel to celebrity covers that would ultimately rule unchallenged until social media provided the classic model genre a platform for self-reinvention. InStyle’s maiden raison d’être was to cover and celebrate celebrity culture, and in homage to that heritage, celebrity is a key element of the anniversary tome. This print issue hits newsstands on Aug. 16, with stories posting throughout August.
Now, at a fractured time in the culture and fashion, the issue, via its two major fashion features, provides a delightful reminder of fashion’s purpose at its most basic level — to bring joy while helping women realize their most beautiful selves. And if along the way glam celebrities offer some inspiration, all the better. The cover story features the divine Julianne Moore in a smart interview with Helena Christensen. Moore wears fashion from the decade of InStyle’s birth, the Nineties, in a shoot by Phil Poynter styled by Karla Welch. The other major piece, written by Eric Wilson,

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Bridget Foley’s Diary: The Message Walmart Could Send

A thin marigold banner atop the homepage bears a somber message: Our hearts go out to everyone affected by the events in El Paso. See our statement.
One click on walmart.com takes you there. We are in shock over the tragic events at the Cielo Vista Mall in El Paso, where Walmart store #2201 and Sam’s Club #6502 are located. We’re praying for the victims, the community and our associates, as well as the first responders who are on the scene. We’re working closely with law enforcement and will update as appropriate. 
Following the shootings in El Paso, Tex., and Dayton, Ohio — and let’s not forget the Gilroy Garlic Festival in Gilroy, Calif., where “only” three people were murdered — anyone who believes in God has surely said a prayer for the dead; the injured; their loved ones; their communities — specifically, the Hispanic community that was so perversely targeted in El Paso; the first responders, and maybe even for the villains and potential future villains who, for whatever reason, are filled with the hate and rage that leads them to commit such atrocities. But prayers without action are at best hollow and at worst hypocritical.
Today, you can walk into about

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Bridget Foley’s Diary: Vera Gives Back

In Washington, two morons have worked hard to delay or dilute via an amendment approving ongoing funding of the 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund for first responders. In New York, two entities are joining ranks to do something nice for people who dedicate their lives to the protection of others.
Global Goddess of Bridal Vera Wang is pairing with Brides Across America, an organization that gifts bridal gowns and underwrites weddings for U.S. troops and, more recently, first responders.
Wang got involved as part of the observance of a major brand milestone. “2019…celebrating our 30th year in business! Who’d of thunk it?!” she mused. The approaching anniversary led her to reflect on more than her own place in fashion. “Milestones also make us grateful for all the opportunities that have come our way,” she said. “Given the world we live in, with all of its complexities and challenges, it is so joyful for me to celebrate my anniversary by celebrating people who have given their lives for us. I look forward to dressing 10 couples on their happiest of days.”
Brides Across America has been gifting gowns and weddings to military personnel since it was founded in 2008 by chief executive officer Heidi Janson.

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Bridget Foley’s Diary: For Derek Lam, the Future Is Contemporary

“It was kind of like, which child do you choose?”
Ultimately the answer came with clarity for Derek Lam and his business partner/chief executive officer and husband, Jan Hendrik-Schlottmann. The two confirmed to WWD that they are shuttering the Derek Lam Collection business to focus on the Derek Lam 10 Crosby contemporary brand that now accounts for 70 percent of their company’s overall business. Last week the men informed their major retail partners that the current pre-fall collection, which completed shipping this month, will be the label’s last, at least for the foreseeable future.
Lam said they were “putting the collection on hiatus,” but the move sounded definitive as he and Schlottmann discussed it, and their company’s redirected plans, over lunch at the Nomad Hotel last week.
Despite the designer’s “which child” characterization, the decision sounded less “Sophie’s Choice” than pragmatic business move, made not in emotionally wrought haste but after careful consideration over the past two or three years. It allows the partners to focus on the contemporary brand that has been on an upward growth trajectory. Lam noted, too, a bit wistfully, that from a creative standpoint, these days the contemporary arena is less fraught, more fun and allows for greater

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Bridget Foley’s Diary: Wes Gordon’s Early Impact at Herrera

A vibrant installation greeted visitors to the Carolina Herrera showroom, where last week Wes Gordon showed his resort collection for the brand. The clothes and potted flowering plants were bright and pretty, in keeping with the vision Gordon saw for the house when he first signed on as a consultant working under “Mrs. Herrera,” and with which he forged ahead upon taking full creative control after her retirement.
That Gordon has swiftly infused the collections with a younger, lighter aura is readily apparent, and we set a date to talk about his vision in greater detail. But when I arrive two days later for that chat, there are other topics to discuss first, like farming. Gordon and his husband Paul Arnhold, two citified guys hailing from Atlanta and Manhattan, respectively, own a place in Roxbury, Conn., “the gayest farm in the world.” (That’s Gordon’s distinction, as I am consummately unqualified to judge farming on any criteria.) He makes that statement after namechecking the farm’s two bunnies, Kate and Pippa. The dog, Birdie, thinks they’re her puppies. (Understandable confusion; all three are black and white.)
Gordon and Arnhold spend as many weekends at Thistledown Farm as possible, but not all weekends, and not

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Bridget Foley’s Diary: Met Musing

Three-plus hours of witty banter are a lot to take. Three-plus hours of un-witty banter are interminable. That reality made watching the Met Gala red carpet on E! tough going. There was just too much space between major arrivals, and the four off-site commentators — Giuliana Rancic, Brad Goreski, Zanna Roberts and Elaine Welteroth — could only give so many rounds of applause for this or that person’s contribution to the culture before the applause rang hollow.
But of course, the red-carpet viewing experience is about more than killing time between arrivals. At some point, the annual Met Gala crossed over from the dressed-up, elite-party opening of a major museum exhibit to the head-spinning, elite costume-party opening of a major museum exhibit. There’s a significant difference between the two. The former was a genuine celebration of fashion, the only high-profile place where the best, purest fashion — the most dramatic, flamboyant, outré — could have a moment of glorious exposure, where designers and fashion-loving, A-list celebrities could flaunt it without fear of the Monday-morning reprisal that greets Oscar ladies deemed by mass public opinion to have gone too far.
Back then, the Met Ball was a fashion crowd dressing in real fashion

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Bridget Foley’s Diary: Leggings Aren’t the Problem

Dear ND Mom Maryann White,
I admire your guts. If, when my daughter was in college, I’d written and signed a letter along the lines of the one you wrote this week, “The Legging Problem,” only her pragmatic consideration of the next semester’s tuition would have prevented our permanent estrangement. I admire you setting the example for your sons of having the courage of your convictions, and being unafraid to publicly voice an opinion that you surely knew would result in a hashtag heyday of negative response and mockery.
I agree with you that clothing sends messages. After decades of working in fashion, I believe in the power of clothes as a conduit of self-expression in general and at a given moment. Look at the two women here. Each wears an outfit that sends a specific, non-accidental message. To pretend otherwise is ridiculous.
Yet to state that sometimes people, both women and men, choose a particular look because it’s sexy is a dicey enterprise in our modern world, particularly when talking about women’s fashion choices in the #MeToo era. Such acknowledgment is often twisted by critics to suggest that the person stating the obvious is trumpeting the old, warped viewpoint that inappropriate male

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BRIDGET FOLEY’S DIARY: To Paris We Must Go

Taking to the runway for fall isn’t necessary. Taking the collection to Paris to sell absolutely is.
That’s the current mind-set at Monse, as for the second consecutive fall season the brand will forego a formal show. Instead, designers Laura Kim and Fernando Garcia have enlisted Kristian Schuller to shoot their look book, which will feature Amanda Murphy, and the brand will hold showroom appointments in New York and Paris.
While the designers remain undecided about whether to opt off the runway for spring as well, in something of a paradigm shift they will definitely stage a formal show for resort 2020.
At a time when brands increasingly opt to go their own way when it comes to presenting their collections, the Monse designers and chief executive officer Renee Prince Fillip thought long and hard about the traditional schedule vis-à-vis the realities of their business. Their no-show decision for fall took into consideration the complications of staging two shows in a single season, as Kim and Garcia have done most seasons since taking over the creative helm at Oscar de la Renta. An even bigger consideration: the frustrating reality of fall markdowns. They determined that the scale of the fall business doesn’t justify the

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Bridget Foley’s Diary: New Work Order

Employment — it’s a changing world.
Two recent media stories suggest just how much it’s changing while a third indicates that a considerable portion of the potential workforce may be in for a rude awakening.
The cover feature of the July/August print issue of The Atlantic proclaims: “The End of Work” with the subhead, “Technology will soon erase millions of jobs. Could that be a good thing?”
Derek Thompson wrote a provocative “what if” based on what is — the ongoing replacement of human labor by technology. His analysis is a big-picture look at the greater societal ramifications of a trend certain to continue, focused on the United States: “Industriousness has served as America’s unofficial religion since its founding.…What might happen if work goes away?” Citing academic experts, he lays out and examines three schools of thought: an enlightened-leisure utopia dependent upon “the right government provisions”; a revival of the artisan spirit and, the most bleak, a “precariat” working class going from task to task.
The New York Times feature (Aug. 15) examining what it’s like to work at Amazon.com had the entire working world abuzz. According to the piece, “Inside Amazon: Wrestling Big Ideas in a Bruising Workplace,” by Jodi Kantor and David

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Bridget Barkan Puts A Modern Spin On A Judy Garland Classic In Honor Of Homeless LGBT Youth

Among gay audiences, Judy Garland is one of few performers who never seems to go out of style.

New York singer-actress Bridget Barkan proved that point at 2014’s “Night of a Thousand Judys” when she crooned a tender version of “As Long as He Needs Me,” which was introduced in the Broadway musical “Oliver!” and performed by Garland on her television series, “The Judy Garland Show,” in 1963.

Now in its fifth year, “Night of a Thousand Judys” — which is a special presentation of New York- and Los Angeles-based actor, writer and performer Justin Sayre’s variety show, “The Meeting,” and timed to coincide with LGBT Pride Month — will benefit the Ali Forney Center, an advocacy group dedicated to homeless lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) teens and young adults.

As in previous installments, performers from Broadway, television and downtown cabaret will hit New York’s Merkin Concert Hall at the Kaufman Center June 1 to croon songs made famous by Garland during her fabled career. The 2015 lineup includes Melissa Errico, Liz Callaway, Michael McElroy, Lauren Worsham and The Skivvies, among others.

Sayre interviewed Ali Forney Center founder Carl Siciliano for his “Sparkle & Circulate with Justin Sayre” podcast. You can check that out here.

Meanwhile, you can also view some previous performances from “The Meeting” on Sayre’s official YouTube page. For more Sayre, head to Facebook and Twitter, too.

“Night of a Thousand Judys” plays New York’s Merkin Concert Hall at the Kaufman Center on June 1. Head here for more details.

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Urban Expressions Le Petit Handbag Bridget Purse – Mustard

Urban Expressions Le Petit Handbag Bridget Purse – Mustard


Urban Expression Little sister Bridget’s or Jayden – Made of vegan leather – Zippered closure – Dual carrying handles – Detachable and adjustable shoulder strap included – Back zipper pocket – Interior features zipper pocket and two open pocket. Color difference represents how the same bag might appear under different lights and monitors. Length 14 inches. Height 9 inches. Width 4 inches.

Price: $
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