Colorful Kors delves further into world of beauty

Updated 12 October 2013
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Colorful Kors delves further into world of beauty

NEW YORK: Michael Kors can’t really be called just a fashion designer anymore. He’s a full-fledged lifestyle brand, and that lifestyle is about to add color cosmetics and several new fragrances.
Kors says he’s driven by perfection, and that means a total look. “Beauty is always such an important part of my runway. When we put on a fashion show — after this many years — I’ve learned the layers and the steps. When I first start thinking mood of the season, beauty is part of it from the start.”
“The right dress with the wrong makeup is still wrong,” he adds.
Kors’ runway show is one of the hottest tickets of New York Fashion Week, which kicks off next week to preview styles of spring 2014.
Before that, though, Kors will be recognized by The Couture Council of The Museum at the Fashion Institute of Technology on Wednesday for his contribution in artistry to the industry.
He talked to The Associated Press about developing lifestyle products in a recent interview.
AP: How is the process different for you in developing beauty products versus clothing and accessories?
Kors: With accessories and clothes, first I have to fall in love with whatever it is, but then I get practical. Is the bag too heavy? Can you wear a bra with the dress? With beauty, it’s more of a quick mood check. ... It’s more gut. Immediately, if I smell something and it’s evocative, I go with it. What takes so long is the packaging.
AP: What about beauty products?
Kors: When you buy something beauty, whether it’s a lipstick, nail polish or a new fragrance, it’s not a long shopping period. You either buy it or not. A perfume should take you away quickly — there’s no trying on pants with a shoe, rolling the jean just right, pretending you have heels on when you try on a skirt.
AP: If women can get a pick-me-up from a new lipstick, how can you get that same quick fashion fix?
Kors: Considering I wear the same thing almost every day, there’s not much I can do. For many men, the quick fix is the tie, and I don’t wear a tie, so I change my aviators (sunglasses). I’ll change the scale and color, whether it’s vintage leather, gunmetal or gold, that’s my mood quick-changer.
AP: There are three types of muses for your three new perfumes, Sexy, Sporty and Glam. Who are they?
Kors: There’s the ‘sexy,’ who is all about confidence. She’s not naked, she could be in jeans or a gown, but she’s sexy. There’s ‘sporty,’ the woman who could be headed to the red carpet or the gym, but she’s the type who just goes. And there’s ‘glam,’ who likes to be the center of attention.
AP: Did you have any of your famous friends in mind when you were making them?
Kors: I have a cast of characters that float by me, sometimes a friend, someone I work with, sometimes celebrity clients — all people who have those moods. For sporty, it’s Blake Lively, can’t you see her surfing and putting on a gown? Or Gwyneth (Paltrow) with her hair yanked back in a pony? Sexy is Angelina Jolie or Rihanna. They exude confidence. And then there’s the glamorous Jennifer Lopez. She’s never a wallflower. She goes big or goes home.
AP: Do you relate more to any one of the personas?
Kors: I’m sporty by nature in that I’m relaxed. I don’t like to be stiff, but I’m the most uncoordinated sporty person. Roger Federer and I won’t be playing sporty tennis anytime soon.


No hard feelings: Paris fashion star Abloh reaches out to Kanye West

The relationship between West and Abloh has been tested after the later was named head of menswear at Louis Vuitton in March. (AFP)
Updated 19 June 2018
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No hard feelings: Paris fashion star Abloh reaches out to Kanye West

  • Abloh will show his own Off-White label in Paris Wednesday before making his debut bow with the world’s biggest luxury brand on Thursday
  • Abloh grew up in Illinois where his seamstress mother taught him her trade as he studied engineering and later architecture. He has made it clear his clothes will be much more street

PARIS: Virgil Abloh paid tribute to his friend and longtime collaborator Kanye West as the US designer took star billing as Paris men’s fashion week began Tuesday.
Relations between the pair have been tested since Abloh was named head of menswear at Louis Vuitton in March, with the rapper saying it was “hurtful” to lose his muse and erstwhile artistic director.
West has made no secret of his own ambitions to lead a major luxury brand as a designer, and revealed last month that he had also once been in talks with Louis Vuitton’s owner, French fashion magnate Bernard Arnault.
Abloh — the son of Ghanaian immigrants — will show his own Off-White label in Paris Wednesday before making his debut bow with the world’s biggest luxury brand on Thursday.
As he put the finishing touches to his collections he posted a photo of Kanye West to his 2.3 million Instagram followers with legend, “The architect of it all.”
West’s wife Kim Kardashian responded with emojis of a heart and two fires to signal her approval. The rapper — who has his own Yeezy line for Adidas — remained silent.
But he told US radio star Charlamagne tha God in a wide-ranging interview last month that there were no hard feelings.
“These things are hurtful when you are working with a talent like... Virgil and somebody comes through and says ‘Bam! I am going to take Virgil.’
“There is some validation in that someone that I came up with is now the head (of menswear) of Louis Vuitton,” West added.
Abloh, 38, is only the second black man to rise to the top of a big Paris fashion house, with French designer Olivier Rousteing responsible for both Balmain’s men and women’s lines.
As well as his nod to his former employer, Abloh dropped hints on social media that he was about to give the aristocratic Vuitton label a strong dose of black empowerment and streetwear style.
Vuitton’s previous designer, Briton Kim Jones — who makes his own debut for Dior Homme on Saturday — often referenced British colonial and safari chic in his clothes.
Abloh grew up in Illinois where his seamstress mother taught him her trade as he studied engineering and later architecture. He has made it clear his clothes will be much more street.
He posted films on Instagram of cotton plants and ceramic neck chains, in what could be seen as references to slavery, as well as a Louis Vuitton record box inspired by hip-hop pioneer Grandmaster Flash, “where you can put your coat in while DJing, shielding it from smoky clubs and spilled drinks.”
Abloh had worked hand in glove with West for more than 15 years. They designed clothes together on Photoshop and were $500-a-month interns under Karl Lagerfeld at Fendi in Rome in 2009 even though the rapper already had a string of Grammy awards under his belt.
West said that he only found out about Abloh taking over at Vuitton as the appointment was announced in March. “He (Abloh) made the call two minutes before it hit the Internet... He had told me he was looking at Versace too... but he knew he was going to Louis Vuitton,” he added.
West admitted days later in an interview with the Hollywood Reporter that the news had weighed on him. “It’s not bad or good,” he said.
Abloh has built up a celebrity following at Off-White with high-profile collaborations with Nike, Jimmy Choo and Moncler. Such has been the buzz that fashionistas jostled each other to get into his show in Paris last March.
Not everyone, however, is sold on streetwear’s inexorable rise. New York Times critic Guy Trebay said a “lot of what turns up on the runways lately looks less designed than crowdsourced.”
The young German and Swedish brands CMMN SWDN and Gmbh kicked fashion week off on Tuesday evening after a dance show by choreographer Mathilde Monnier inspired by shoemaker J.M. Weston.
French label Pigalle also tried to rethink the catwalk by presenting its new collection during an hour-long music and dance show at one of the French capital’s most prestigious concert halls.