A cavalcade of Canadian models and covetable ’60s-inspired styles at Joe Fresh | Hollywood yohana

 When it comes to fashion, I have two minds. I oscillate between editor mode (carefully scrutinizing trends, fabrics, cuts, and colour) and shopping autopilot (dreaming up outfits, making must-have lists, and slowly building my dream closet). Last night’s Joe Fresh show threw me for a loop. While I was technically there for work, I couldn’t pry myself away from my material side. Not only did the presentation of the show blow me away—Joe flew in the who’s who of Canadian models as well as used some of the beauties who’ve been in town for the week including Alana Zimmer, Kate King, Heather Marks, Herieth Paul, Kristin Owen, Liisa Winkler, Tara Gill, Yasmin Warsame, Kori Richardson, and Amanda Laine—but the clothes have never looked so… expensive (a coup for a mass-retail brand). Perfectly fitting tight jersey tees, pointed loafer pumps, and a printed ankle pant all got the green light in my mental notes. The clever combination of clean ‘60s minimalism (the show opened with a Mondrian-esque shift dress) with sportwear-detailed separates (neoprene, parachute fabrics, and drawstring details were everywhere) ensured the show didn’t feel one-noted. While they certainly won’t alienate their core grocery-store customer, Joe certainly upped the ante for the fashion followers who will be anxiously awaiting the runway styles come spring.


The show-to-show rush at Diane von Furstenberg and runway shots from Y-3 | Hollywood yohana

 As we’ve alluded to in our daily NYFW diary coverage, there’s a lot of rushing around during fashion week. From backstage to front row, from one show to another (and not a moment too late!) it’s safe to bet that most editors and attendees are well versed in dashing from place to place—gracefully of course! We capture some of the rush with today’s style snaps, taken outside Diane von Furstenberg and inside Y-3. Sit down and relax for a moment… and enjoy!


Say hello to the new Dior? What Raf Simons could mean for the ladylike aesthetic of the legendary house | Hollywood yohana

Is Dior eschewing ladylike in favour of bold restraint? After a virtual explosion of excited rumours on Twitter last night, WWD is now reporting that Jil Sander creative director Raf Simons is closing in on a deal to become John Galliano’s replacement at Dior. Known for his brightly hued and minimalist/maximalist designs, Simons might not be the first designer you’d associate with Dior’s aesthetic, but in his recent collections he’s shown an interest in couture techniques— he has even incorporated ball gowns and bridal looks, all of which have garnered rave reviews from critics.

Although Simons was previously known for his menswear—and only began with womenswear when he joined Sander in 2005—this isn’t the first time he’s been approached by a couture house. There were rumours this fall that he was in talks to replace Stefano Pilati at Yves St Laurent—reports which seemed to evaporate. So is Simons ready to make the leap to couture? There’s no doubt this rising star has talent and is more suited to succeed Galliano than past-rumoured names like say, Alexander Wang. If these latest rumours prove true, we’re expecting to see some big (and interesting) changes at Dior. Dior under Simons is sure to promise less extravagance, and with it, less meandering for inspiration—something that Galliano was prone to in the later years of his tenure at Dior. We can bid adieu to the Cleopatras, the Marie Antoinettes, and the Marlene Dietrichs,  in favour of a bold new heroine, distinct of the here and now. As to what will happen to Jil Sander? According to reports, Simons is signed on as head designer for the label indefinitely. We hope—surely in vain—that this means he’ll keep both roles, but we imagine one (or more) labels would suffer if sharing his attention.


Why most girls hate wearing pantyhose (and 4 picks you might actually like!) | Hollywood yohana

For some, wearing pantyhose can be as unpleasant as getting a filling. They’re tight, they itch, and they’re a real hassle to get on and off. On last week’s episode of Dexter, a less-than-refined Debra Morgan wonders if anyone has ever died from “crotch asphyxiation.” Although we’re certain that no one has—yet—we can definitely relate. But with the temps drop, drop, dropping, we’ve come to realize that our beloved leg-baring days are nearly over. So when, exactly, are we expected to officially bust out the nylons? When it reaches 5 C? –3 C? Once the snow falls?

“I used to go to an all-girls private school in Winnipeg and during winter, pantyhose were mandatory,” says Toronto-based designer Lara Vincent, who’s known for her year-round leggy look and sprightly floral crowns. No longer under the supervision of a headmistress, Vincent has vowed to never again wear pantyhose—even on the coldest day of the year. “I hate feeling restricted! I wear dresses to be comfortable,” she says. “Why would I jeopardize that comfort by wearing stockings?”
But what if pantyhose were actually comfortable? What if they didn’t chafe, run, ride up, or render us numb from the waist down? Hosiery designers have taken stock of this anti-stocking movement and have come up with a solution: pantyhose that DON’T suck.
Don’t freeze your cheeks off this season—consider giving tights another try. Today, FASHION has picked five perfect pantyhose that even the most discriminating legs can bear.

Last looks from outside the shows, plus impromtu runway shots from Missoni and Dsquared | Hollywood yohana

Our last batch of Milan photos sure is a whopper. And by that we mean a proverbial multi-layered burger of amazingly costumed models at Missoni and Dsquared, editors, and some wowee architecture shots. Stay tuned for snaps from Paris starting tomorrow!
Photography by Lewis Mirrett 

Our top picks from Western Canada Fashion Week including Stanley Carroll, Angélique Chmielewski, Malorie Urbanovitch and more! | Hollywood yohana

Running seasonally for eight straight nights since its inception in 2005, Western Canada Fashion Week (WCFW) offers a platform for both emerging and veteran designers alike to showcase their work in a province that is relatively new to the fashion scene. Alongside expert-affirmation from the Mercedes-Benz Start Up judges last week, we can certainly say that there is some sparkle out west.
From Edmonton darling Nicole Campre, this season’s WCFW Emerging Designer contest winner, to long-time mens and womenswear designer Stanley Carroll, WCFW is nurturing some exciting talent each season at the TransAlta Arts Barns—and here are a few to check out:

Angélique Chmielewski —this much-buzzed-about New York–based designer was a crowd favourite. An Edmonton native, Chmielewski used fetching colour combinations of white, black and blue in flowing and structured pieces that felt street-chic and contemporary. We also couldn’t stop thinking: BCBG Max Azria.
Malorie Urbanovitch returned this season with another strong collection, staying true to her clean aesthetic. The girl channeled the ‘80s for fall, with crop tops and jock-style high school jackets in an array of mossy greens. It’s also no surprise that she was picked as a Mercedes-Benz Start Up semi-final winner; look out for her in Toronto this October.
Luxx ready-to-wear designer Derek Jagodzinsky brought a little reality-show star appeal when he introduced his collection with Canada’s Next Top Model Cycle 3 runner-up Linsay Willier —also from Edmonton—in a pair of copper sequined pants. (P.S. Whatever happened to that show? Come on, Jay!
And repping Calgary with polish and vision, respectively, were ‘50s looks from Michelle Roberts at Emogene Couture, and cute, earthy and furry attire from Marsina King of MaNoKin Design.


Do nail salons have Starbucks-like potential? | Hollywood yohana

Whether you’re pro-Starbucks or not, it’s hard to deny the appeal of the coffee corporation’s branding: no matter where you are in the world, you can expect the same quality, taste, design and products.
That consistency and standard of service is exactly what one Boston-based CEO is expecting to do with MiniLuxe, her six-location nail salon chain. In fact, in Sue Thirlwall’s words, she wants to “Starbucks the nail salon” and expand nationally.
One thing is for certain: if there was ever a time to strike when the iron’s hot, it would be now. The nail salon industry has developed into a booming $7.3 billion industry, and now widely offers everything from shellac manicures to nail art in salons across North America.
Also, as Thirlwall pointed out, nail polish and nail grooming still managed to do well during the recession, perhaps because of their lower price points. While the makeup industry is still recovering from the economic slump and only beginning to thrive again as of late, people like Thirlwall were able to begin their companies during the recession and still do relatively well.
“We’ve kept the price down. Our luxe 30-minute manicure is $19, and we guarantee it for three days. I believe the time is right because it is definitely affordable but also hygienic . . . we know we could charge more, but we choose not to,” Thirlwall said.
One catch with the industry is that despite what seems to be a constant crop-up of new nail salons, the demand for affordable and reliable manis is still high, and it can be hard to find a place that offers them.
If Thirlwall and other nail industry entrepreneurs like her can get the business formula right, then there will undoubtedly be thousands of girls (and guys) flocking to these salon chains.

Christina Han: “Her business plan has a well-manicured lady (or gentleman) out the door in 30 minutes for less than $20. This just might work.”
Katie J.M. Baker: “One Venti pedicure coming up.”
Paige Dzenis, associate online editor: “Based on the number of Twitter conversations I see almost daily with women asking where they can find a cheap, fast and reliable mani/pedi at any given intersection in the city, a chain of dependable salons makes sense for the nail needs of the average customer. Let’s just hope they focus first on mimicking Starbucks’ impressive quality control measures before they go for geographical domination.”


Recreate Dolce & Gabbana’s chili and garlic earrings minus the $350 price tag!| Hollywood yohana

 Muy caliente was the theme of Dolce and Gabbana’s Spring 2012 collection. Vibrant fruity fabrics and chili pepper prints paraded down the runway, but what really got our attention were the chunky earrings adorned with chilies, bulbs of garlic and bowtie pastas. They were totally adorable, and with a price tag of $350, we thought they’d be the perfect addition to the Fashion DIY feature. With inexpensive supplies that can be found at any bead or craft store, we recreated the Dolce and Gabbana chili and garlic gold hoop earrings.


Check out our picks for the top 5 most stylish attendees (plus their dates!) at last night’s CFDA awards | Hollywood yohana

It wasn’t just Seth Meyers’ lacy Commes des Garçons dress that grabbed our attention at last night’s CFDA Awards. The awards ceremony had quite a few note-worthy moments, from host Meyers’ awkward Galliano joke to the shocking womenswear designer of the year win for The Row over Proenza Schouler.
Along with the Olsen twins, this year’s winners included Billy Reid (Menswear Designer of the Year), Reed Krakoff (Accessory Designer of the Year), Joseph Altuzarra (Swarovski Award for Emerging Talent in Womenswear), Phillip Lim (Swarovski Award for Emerging Talent in Menswear), Tabitha Simmons (Swarovski Award for Emerging Talent in Accessory Design), Tommy Hilfiger (The Geoffrey Beene Lifetime Achievement Award), Scott Schuman and Garance Doré (The Media Award), Johnny Depp (The Fashion Icon Award), Andrew Rosen (The Founders Award) and finally, Rei Kawakubo (The International Award).
Though the CFDAs wouldn’t be the CFDAs if the red carpet wasn’t flooded with amazing fashion, we managed to whittle down the top five looks from last night. Click through above for our list.


Style Panel: Proving that women with every body type can wear shorts (and how!) | Hollywood yohana

 Love ‘em or hate ‘em, shorts–the poster item for summer–are here to stay, at least through the next three months. While some of avoid these thigh-flaunting guys at all costs, others have succeeded to find a pair that flatter whatever assets they may have. By others, of course, we’re talking about the ladies of Style Panel, which now includes Edmonton’s Kassandra Camponi and Fredericton’s Kristin MacDonald. So without further ado…


The battle of the Gs continues, with the courtroom case between Gucci and Guess taking an unexpectedly pro-Guess turn | Hollywood yohana

The battle of the Gs continues, with the courtroom case between Gucci and Guess taking an unexpectedly pro-Guess turn today.
As we reported last month, Gucci is suing Guess for $221 million in trademark infringement damages. The luxury brand claims that Guess has been featuring details commonly found in Gucci products (think tri-coloured stripes, a square “G” and the brand name printed in similar flowing script) resulting in over $200 million in loss.
Marc Fisher, CEO of Guess licensee Marc Fisher Footwear, explained (WWD reports it as weepily!) in defense: “the number of shoes Gucci claims infringed on its intellectual property rights represent just three percent of all shoes Marc Fisher Footwear made in a four-year period […].” Moreover, Bonnie Smith, a former shoe designer and current FIDM part-time instructor who was brought in on Guess’s behest, denied similarities between the two brands and confirmed that “yes, we ‘copy,’ we duplicate, we fool around with [original versions]. … It’s all because a retailer wants it. … [But] it’s really hard to make shoes identical, and I don’t think anyone really tries to do that.”
Things got ugly for Guess when Gucci’s lawyer revealed a document showing that Fisher has bought $75,000 in Gucci merch over the past six years. You’d think Fisher would have been tongue-tied over the evidence but instead he had no trouble admitting it because he claims the products were purchased to use as “inspiration,” but that they have photos of many other brands, which they use as “references” for their own designs.
Guess and co. regained their footing, however, when Darren Saunders, Marc Fisher Footwear’s attorney, showed Smith samples of a Vans shoe, an Adidas sneaker and a Sperry Top-Sider shoe —which all, as it turned out, were created by Gucci. Now who’s zooming who?

Fashionista: “[…] unfortunately the evidence does not stack up in Fisher’s favor.”
Styleite: “Just when we thought Gucci‘s copyright infringement lawsuit against Guess was over, there’s a twist.”
Caitlin Agnew, assistant editor/research: “There’s a fine line between inspiration and imitation.”