Known for his stunning couture designs and his sophisticated women’s tuxedo jackets (known as le smoking), Saint Laurent was destined to carve out his own identity, but his career was not without its challenges. After a poorly received collection at Dior, which featured hobble skirts and other unusual designs, he was sent into mandatory military service. The stress of being in the army (although he lasted only 20 days) took a tremendous toll on the sensitive designer. He suffered from teasing and hazing by his fellow soldiers, and he soon plunged into a nervous breakdown; he was sent to a mental hospital for treatment.
Culottes are dubious, particularly with the length. Falling somewhere close to a bootcut and an all out flare, have advanced from last-season’s crude denim, twofold tone or weaved variations to the practically pants with wide legs this pre-fall season, and the length is stitched just between the upper lower leg and lower calf. Aside from the lower leg brushing length, a higher, more infamous length is likewise going hot, and it will look best cooperated with tall cowhide boots, impressively restraining the style.
Being way more than a famous shoe designer, Manolo Blahnik is the man who can single-handedly make a woman feel instantly sexy with his ultra sophisticated, wildly fun high heel shoes. Becoming a household name through shows like Sex and the City and his never ending list of celebrity endorsements, Manolo Blahnik has become one of the most influential shoe designers of our time. Unfortunately it is known in fashion circles that when Blahnik dies there will be no more Manolos. There is no protégé or heir and no desire from the great designer to have the label continue without him.
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Designers conduct research on fashion trends and interpret them for their audience. Their specific designs are used by manufacturers. This is the essence of a designer’s role; however, there is variation within this that is determined by the buying and merchandising approach, and product quality; for example, budget retailers will use inexpensive fabrics to interpret trends, but high-end retailers will ensure that the best available fabrics are used.
As previously mentioned, punk spirit seized the London shows and definitely filtered into some during Paris. Alexander McQueen and Dior are two major luxury brands turning the rebellious signifiers of this look on their heads (studs! leather! mohair hole-y knits! plaid!), but you'll also find some homegrown talent pushing things into even wilder territory. Even if the more extreme ends of this trend aren't going to translate into the mass market, expect to see many tartan creations hitting shop floors over the coming months…
Considered by many one of the greatest tailors of the century, Pierre Balmain was born in Saint Jean de Maurienne, France in 1914. After studying at the school of Architecture, in Paris he founded in 1945 the Maison Balmain as a couture house, with a lucrative sideline in fragrances. In that year he showed long, bellshaped skirts with small waists; a line that became popular in 1947 as part of Dior’s New Look.