Last night, Converse held a launch party for the collaboration of Terence Koh for Converse 1HUND(RED) Artists Chuck Taylor All Stars at the Cooper Union Foundation Building in NYC. As the elevator opened up to the thumping music dj’d by Aaron Bondaroff, I grabbed a Colt 45 and joined the intimate gathering of downtown hipsters and press to view the new Chucks by the controversial artist. Half naked models dressed only in fresh white underwear and fresh white Converse Chuck Taylors, designed by Koh, sat on stools air painting on white canvases. I thought to myself, “no mini-gold plated feces?” not even a miniature one dangling from the shoe laces, not a trace.
Koh??™s approach to the design of his shoe focused on subtraction. ???I wanted to keep the DNA of the Chuck Taylor intact, while reducing the seams, and smoothing out the shoe??™s surfaces as much as possible???. Terence replaced the usual curve of the ankle with a vertical construction to give the shoe a clean square look. A smoothed-out version of the signature Converse tread on the sole combines with a white on white All Star rubber license plate on the heel to round out the ultra-clean look and feel of the shoe.
Terence Koh, born in Beijing China who grew up in Mississauga, Ontario – Canada, is self described as “the Naomi Campbell of the art world,” in the New York Times. Koh is an artist with work that includes sculptures, installations, performances and artist books. Categorized as an artist of New Gothic Art, Koh has exhibited widely in the United States and abroad. His work has been the subject of several major solo exhibitions including Love for Eternity, a mid-career retrospective at MUSAC (Leon, Spain); Captain Buddha, Schirn Kunsthalle (Frankfurt, Germany); Dirty Blind God, de Pury & Luxembourg, (Zurich, Switzerland); Terence Koh Whitney Museum of American Art, (New York). Most art collectors don’t put up with a lot of bullshit, but Koh has gold-plated and sold his feces for $500,000 to collectors! Holy shit! Genius.
As a contributor to 1HUND(RED), 10% of the net wholesale price of Terence’s shoe will go to The Global Fund to help eliminate AIDS in Africa, giving consumers an opportunity to become agents of change and offering a way to turn design into power. The Terence Koh for Converse Chuck Taylor All Star shoe launches exclusively at Opening Ceremony in New York and Los Angeles Saturday, November 21st and select retailers globally. Shoes will retail for $150 and will be available in sizes 7 – 13.
In the news today, Phillip Lim is scheduled to present his men’s wear line separately from his women’s line at New York Fashion Week. I am a die-hard 3.1 Phillip Lim fan, but not sure how I feel about the men’s line. The tuxedo style suits are not exactly flattering. Reminiscent of 80’s Ton Sur Ton boxy tops and Z Cavaricci parachute pants, I hope the upcoming line for 2010 displays his true brilliance.
–Nikki Cho Russo
Phillip Lim for Him
From WWD ISSUE 08/11/2009
LIM FOR HIM: The men??™s schedule for New York Fashion Week is taking shape, and the biggest surprise so far is 3.1 Phillip Lim, which will hold its first stand-alone presentation for men??™s wear, separating it from women??™s. Yigal Azrou?«l, on the other hand, is doing the opposite, bringing men and women??™s back together. General Idea, meanwhile, is graduating to a runway format. In less sunny news, 15 labels that presented men??™s wear last season are not on the calendar at this time. Furthermore, New York lost two heavy hitters when Z Zegna and Calvin Klein returned to Milan. But there are still newcomers, including Odyn Vovk, Bespoken, Claiborne by John Bartlett, Prps, Fa?§onnable and Timo Weiland.
Loeffler Randall Launching E-commerce
From WWD ISSUE 08/11/2009
A look from Loeffler Randall.
Photo By Courtesy Photo
With a strong following for her cool-girl flats and louche boots, Loeffler Randall chief executive officer and creative director Jessie Randall is keen on keeping her four-year-old brand exclusive, even as it??™s ready to grow.
Such was the reason that Randall, who scooped up the Council of Fashion Designers of America??™s Swarovski Award for Accessory Design in 2007, waited until now to introduce e-commerce.
???Loeffler Randall has become a cult brand, but no one [retailer] can show the full embodiment and vision of the brand,??? said Randall. ???On the Web site, we??™re able to show all that.???
The firm??™s Web site, loefflerrandall.com, relaunches today and features the full breadth of the collection for purchase globally. Loeffler Randall is sold at 200 doors in the U.S. including Barneys New York, Neiman Marcus and Bergdorf Goodman, as well as 20 international stores.
???Being a mom of twins, I do all of my shopping online,??? Randall said. ???This is the way it??™s going. It will be a new revenue stream for us.???
The site is also engaging, featuring a blog by the designer, behind-the-scenes video and look book shoots. It will offer exclusive styles and options to preorder product.
From its inception, Loeffler Randall had planned to be a lifestyle brand with many categories starting off with footwear, then accessories and apparel, which bowed in 2007. Randall has put the handbag category on hiatus this season.
The strategy had long been to open a brick-and-mortar store, but considering the trying economic times, the company decided to invest in its Web site for now. Stores are still in the plans for the future.
???We are viewing this as our??¦store,??? said Randall, who said the firm??™s volume is about $10 million.
More than half of Loeffler Randall??™s sales are from footwear, while 30 percent is derived from apparel with styles such as cinched-waist shift dresses and origami-detailed blouses.
Tags: Loeffler Randall, Phillip Lim
Top White Tees
Posted WEDNESDAY APRIL 29, 2009
Topman t-shirt (NOT part of the designer collaboration)
Topman is launching its fourth project in which it invites a handful of designers to create a version of a wardrobe staple. Past projects have featured white shirts, sunglasses and black trousers. This time white T-shirts are getting the designer treatment from Richard Chai, Phillip Lim, Juun J, Henry Holland, JW Anderson and Christopher Shannon.
Anderson and Shannon were both selected to participate in the retailer??™s MAN show during the most recent London Fashion Week. The T-shirts will launch online and in a few select Topman locations, including New York and Oxford Circus, London, on May 28.
In addition, designer Antony Price has designed a second ???Priceless??? collection for Topman, which launches May 14. Price is best known for his fashion influence on Brian Ferry and Roxy Music, as well as David Bowie and Duran Duran. The retailer??™s affair with Eighties style shows no signs of cooling.
What good would fresh whites be without their partner in crime, deliciously dirty denims! Take a gander into some really kick-ass jeans for all the ??ber hip gentlemen out there.
Kicking Mule: Indigo Rocker Jeans, $275
Rope dyed dark rinsed raw indigo selvage denim jeans. Low rise fit with a skinny thigh that tapers from the knee to the bottom hem. Selvage coin pocket, button fly, made in japan.
Unconditional: Blackish Drop Crotch Zip Jeans, $279
Faded black drop crotch straight leg jeans with zippers at sides of legs. Can be zipped for skinny leg. 5 pocket styling with additional zip closure coin pocket.
Humor Jeans: Drop Crotch Jean, $111.83
One wash slim leg Humor drop crotch jean with contrasting yellow stitching and distinctive white covered rivets. These are 4 pocket jeans and fasten with a button fly and embossed shank button. Belt loops are oversized and back pockets positioned low, there??™s a white leather Humor ???radiohead??™ brand patch on the waistband at the back right hand size.
Lad Musician: Denim Pants 501, $345
Lad musician finds inspiration from the rock and rollers of times past and present – so you can bet these pants have a sleek and slim cut to them. very soft denim in 100% cotton. Low crotch cut available in white bleach.
And I can not leave out some amazing kicks by Alejandro Ingelmo. Check these out!
Alejandro Ingelmo: Woven Low Top, $518.92
Expertly built from the finest leathers and the most durable of sole units by the best Italian craftsman, the New York based designer comes through once again ??“ you will be hard pushed to find sneakers of this quality.The toe is smooth black Italian Nappa leather with an amazing woven silver metallic leather side panel. These low tops have contrasting off white vulcanised rubber sole and bright white laces.
Happy shopping guys!
–Nikki Cho Russo
Tags: Alejandro Ingelmo, Antony Price, Christopher Shannon, Henry Holland, Juun J, JW Anderson, Kicking Mule, Phillip Lim, Richard Chai, Topman, Unconditional