Monday, 12 January 2015

The Return of John Galliano

The Return of John Galliano

3 years and 11 months since he was duly fired from his position as Creative Director of Christian Dior and his namesake brand. 3 years and 11 months I have patiently waited for his return. For me, I would proudly declare John Galliano as one of the greatest designers of all time, and truly deserving of being noted as such, not only for his creativity or the fluidity he designed his collections with, on a more personal level, he was the primary reason why I saw the beauty and importance of Haute Couture. John was one of the primary reasons why I got into fashion. I think of John Galliano as being one of the greatest couturier of my generation, comparable only to Lee Alexander McQueen, therefore his return is readily welcomed. 

Since the announcement in October that he would make his return to fashion via the ever-alluring fashion house, Maison Martin Margiela, everyone in the industry has been very vocal about it. In my opinion, Margiela is perfect for John, and John is perfect for Margiela. On a practical level, you only need to cite any Dior Haute Couture collection from 2006 to 2011 particularly, to see that John is far more than capable to design a Margiela collection which I think requires attention to unbelievably intrinsic detail, [detail more complex than your average Elie Saab collection] and his experience. John's experience at a conglomerate like Dior, while managing to maintain his own label means instantly warrants him as a worthy candidate too- before he was fired, John was designing 32 collections every year. Furthermore, Margiela itself has the right amount of "understated" attached to it's personality, which I think is the best way for John to make his way back into fashion. Before his return was announced, I thought that John should have just secretly ghost designed for a house like Jil Sander since it seemed that nobody wanted anything to do with him for a while, but then my prayers were answered and he was publicly hired by Maison Martin Margiela.

It's exactly 30 minutes until #MargielaMonday [originally coined by Gallaino enthusiast & Fashion Editor of The Independent Alexander Fury], and I have absolute faith that John will deliver. This is probably the most anticipated debut of a Creative Director in the past few years, and yes I am taking Hedi at Saint Laurent, Raf at Dior and Ghesquière at Vuitton, into consideration. Margiela and Dior are almost world's apart in terms of branding, vision, function and purpose, therefore John's appointment at the house is so exciting for enthusiasts everywhere, because this will really showcase his talent as an designer in a completely different way that he was able to at Dior. John Galliano has the ability to truly revolutionise Margiela in a major way over the next few years [think 90s Gucci under the vision of Tom Ford], and whatever happens, today will be history in the making. No doubt, Margiela will become far more commercial in the sense that we'll hopefully start seeing the creations on red carpets. We just don't want it to go down the Givenchy route in terms of commercialisation because Kanye will surely feel the need to make some kind of commentary about the show. Anyway, it's not like he can read this or anything but I wish John all the best for the show today and hope that everyone still not willing to give him a second chance, will think twice after today. Just an excerpt from a report of the interview he gave on Charlie Rose a while ago to finish this off appropriately; He closed this conversation by stating "I am able to create. I am ready to create...[and] I hope through my atonement I'll be given a second chance."

Thank you for reading,
Le Style Connoisseur

Wednesday, 31 December 2014

Looking Forward…

New year (in 5 minutes!), new label. I'm talking about what I labelled this post as- "musings". Like any year in fashion, 2014 has had it's high points [Galliano gracing us with his return and The Glitter Plan being released], and it's low points [US Vogue April 2014]. But hey, fashion isn't perfect.

All of the major publications like Harper's Bazaar US have made their own reflections of the year, so I won't subject you all to reading mine. Moreover, the title of this post is "Looking Forward" so I want to talk about the year ahead and my fashion resolutions. If you'd asked me a year ago to even consider trying the lingerie trend, wear lace, a crop top or even something as simple as culottes, I would have called you crazy and defended my opinion by saying I wouldn't want to look like a baby prostitute. Harsh/anti-feminist or whatever you want to call it, but true. I didn't feel comfortable at all wearing stuff like that and thought it to be inappropriate for anyone under the age of 25. It's amazing how this year has changed my line of thinking so drastically. Ever since turning 18, I want to try all these things!!! I want to embrace my femininity! I know that probably (actually definitely) sounds really social-activist-who-likes-tea-and-spends-all-her-time-arguing-with-internet-trolls-on-Tumblr-about why-she-should-dye-her armpits-purple-to-help-the-feminist-movement, but I feel like this is a turning point for in terms of fashion and life.

It actually has been in the most literal sense, because I started my first fashion internship about 2 weeks ago at i-D Magazine. Now, that experience which will still be ongoing into 2015 requires a series of posts, from what it's like there, tips for interning at a fashion magazine and a few other ideas I have in mind. Basically, I'm going through what I'm referring to as a "transition period", and I have my own fashion-related resolutions that I'll stick to, to compliment it. I don't understand why indisciplined people mock others that make New Year's Resolutions- the "new year new me" tweets are understandable to mock because you had 365 days to change, but I actually stuck to one of my main resolutions last year which was to lose weight [I swayed during the exam period but got back on track and have lost 11 pounds so far!].

So here is how I want to better myself in 2015 fashion-wise:

Friday, 12 December 2014

Replacing Frida Giannini

I woke up this morning expecting to see my Twitter timeline filled with more comments about Russell Brand on Question Time last night [I kinda forgot he existed after he broke up with Katy Perry to be honest, but I admire his interest in politics!]. Instead, I was barraged with tweets from British Vogue, Business of Fashion, i-D Magazine etc. that Gucci's Creative Director Frida Giannini and her significant other Patrizio di Marco, Gucci's CEO were leaving the brand. I'm getting whip-lash from the sheer number of new appointments at some major fashion houses; Johnny Coca at Mulberry, Guilaume Henry at Nina Ricci, Peter Copping at Oscar de la Renta and finally the return of my favourite couturier of all time Mr John Galliano at Margiela. 

The only show I really care about during Milan Fashion Week is Prada, unfortunately before A/W 14' the last time I was really excited by a Gucci collection was S/S 11'. Italy's fashion industry is in a crisis because of hundreds of reasons, from lack of support from the Government to the fashion funds that don't actually finance projects. However, I think what would really breathe life into Milan's tired streets, is new blood. Someone correct me if I'm wrong, but there is no creative director below the age of 30 at the helm of any of the major Italian brands? There's nothing wrong with having industry veterans like Donatella Versace, Giorgio Armani and Miuccia Prada, however Donatella Versace is a senior citizen. I kid you not, Donatella Versace is a senior citizen! Let that sink in.

Fall 14'

Summer 11'
Young Creative Directors can do very powerful things at fashion houses, case study: Balmain. Now, I'm no Balmain fan or Olivier Rousteing for various reasons but I respect him for being so young, and his casting decisions for his ad campaigns. Balmain was irrelevant to Hollywood and the younger generation once upon a time because of it's extortionate pricing and mediocre designs, but because Olivier Rousteing is desperate to be the 11th Kardashian and cement his status amongst the crème de la crème of music, everyone wants to join the Balmain army- except me of course. Whatever, your opinion is on Olivier's obsession with celebrity culture, the fact of the matter is, every time we hear Nicki and A$AP namedrop his brand in their songs, Erich Fayer is laughing all the way to the bank. See Balmain sales below:

"Balmain posted sales of €30.4 million ($41.1 million) in 2012 and a profit of €3.1 million, according to financial statements filed with the Paris commercial court. In the past three years, the company's revenue has nearly doubled, rising from €16.5 million in 2009." -WSJ

Jeremy Scott has managed to revitalise Moschino, and he may not be under the age of 30, but the point is that someone with completely new and fresh ideas for Gucci would probably be a good thing, not necessarily for the brand's elitist desire, but it would definitely save their sales from getting any worse. I couldn't find Moschino's sales figures anywhere, but here is what I did find which I'm sure gives some indication for just how well the brand is doing.

" In August, department store Selfridges told the FT that it had to reorder Moschino’s French fry phone cover in homage to McDonald’s three times to meet demand. At online retailer Net-a-Porter, according to its buying manager Sasha Sarokin, sales of that and other Moschino cases, such as a melting lollipop, have been “insane-Financial Times

I know phone cases aren't clothes, but basically, Moschino is selling extremely well right now! Gucci, not so much. Before the rumour-mill really starts gaining momentum in February when Frida presents her last collection, I wanted to share my thoughts on who I think could replace her.

The Safe Option: Tom Ford

Don't even pretend like you all don't want this to happen. In the words of Hung, "Tom Ford for Gucci 2.0" would be beyond brilliant.

Sensible Option 1: Riccardo Tisci

This would be redemption for creating Givenchy's t-shirt culture and the best option after Tom Ford.

Sensible Option 2: Peter Dundas

Personally, I don't find Pucci offensive and I think this wouldn't be too much of a step up for Mr Dundas in terms of responsibility.

Adventurous Option 1: Alexandre Vauthier

I know he's a couturier, but he has the skill set to do it!

Adventurous Option 2: Christopher Kane

I want to preserve him until he takes the reigns from Donatella at Versace in a few years, but Christopher Kane could be perfect for the job [see JW Anderson at Loewe as a reference!!!!]

Adventurous Option 3: Christophe Lemaire

It's a completely different vibe to Hermès of course, but like Riccardo Tisci, he could most definitely handle the job and would bring the exclusivity back to Gucci that I feel it's lost.

Wildcard/Dream Option: Cushnie & Ochs

I have no idea why I've only recently started paying attention to Cushnie & Ochs but I feel this would be the second coming of 90s Tom Ford at Gucci, in 2015.

Thank you for reading,

P.S. I broke up from school today, so expect some posts over the next few weeks!
P.S.S. Wishing anyone that still reads this blog a Merry Christmas in case I don't get around to posting before then!