Thursday, March 29, 2012

Ladies Who Lunch: ZUZU KIM Fall 2012!

One of my favorite parts of Fashion Weeks, no matter what city they are in, is the discovery of new talent.  It is always so exciting to see fashion interpreted through a new fresh eye. This last Fashion Week in New York was no different and I was pleased to come upon burgeoning talent in many different venues.

I was of course curious when I received an invite to a presentation of a new collection by designer ZUZU KIM for Fall 2012.  Needless to say, the name ZUZU KIM was interesting enough to grab my attention and I wanted to find out more about this young designer.  On further investigation, I learned that Christina “Zuzu” Kim, as the daughter of the former South Korean Ambassador to Saudi Arabia, was raised around the world, giving her exposure to a wide array of cultures.  Additionally, ZUZU KIM is a self taught classical pianist that studies piano performance at the Julliard School.
After studying fashion at the Art Institute of Chicago, ZUZU KIM opened a high-end women’s atelier in Chicago, where she gained recognition and was recruited by Phoebe Couture in New York, becoming Head Designer within a year.  Backed with this experience, ZUZU decided to create her own line and presented her first women’s ready-to-wear collection for Fall 2012 during New York Fashion Week.

Combining her love for fashion with her love for music, ZUZU KIM Fall 2012 was given the theme “Concerto”, inspired by Mozart’s Piano Concerto No. 20.  Reflecting her background as a concert pianist, the collection has several beautiful tuxedo blouses and plays on conductor jackets, taking the streamlined jackets and adding a feminine touch with flounces, scallops and pleats.  A favorite of mine is a white jacket that is classic conductor jacket in the front with a back that is all about pleats with a buttoned tab at the waist.  The collection also has beautiful separates, cocktail dresses, Italian wool tuxedos and an evening gown that is a study in drape and dubbed the “Pianist Gown”.  The fabrics in the collection are premium cashmeres, wools, lace, chiffon and a rich brocade in a sophisticated palette of black, white, navy, gold and burgundy.

I have also been drawn to ZUZU KIM due to her own philanthropic philosophy.  Being a strong believer in giving back to the community, ZUZU partnered with VH1 Save the Music Foundation for the presentation of her first collection!  The foundation is a non-profit organization dedicated to restoring instrumental music education programs in America’s public schools and raising awareness about the importance of music as a part of a child’s complete education.

ZUZU KIM’s first collection shows off her talents as a designer, capturing her musicians sensibility for lyricism, harmony, playfulness and passion.  Combined with her background growing up in diverse cultures, ZUZU KIM has created an elegant and chic collection that leaves us begging for more.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Ladies Who Lunch: Sachika Spring 2012!

Bursting onto the Fashion Scene in New York just a few short years ago, the Sachika Twins have already made their mark on the industry with their Sachika Collection.  For Spring 2012, they presented the collection in both New York and Los Angeles.  We caught the runway presentation in Los Angeles and spoke with the talented twins before the show!

The Sachika Spring 2012 presentation opened with a dance troop performance that took us away to the imaginary Sachika Island and set the stage for the Mermaid Paradise inspired collection.  The silhouettes of the collection are a nice mix of fluid soft pieces and very structured body conscious pieces that accentuate a woman’s figure.  With a color palette of sea blues, corals, white, black and exotic prints, this collection is right on target for Spring 2012.

Born in Paris, raised in Montreal and now living bi-coastally between New York and Los Angeles, the Vietnamese Twins seem pretty much at home wherever they are. Their  Sachika Collections of chic body conscious apparel have gained them a celebrity following, which has given them the media attention necessary to create a successful line.

The Sachika Twins were featured on the E! Entertainment series “Ice Loves Coco” and proved themselves at home in front of the camera as well.  These multi-talented twins will definitely have our eye on them as it is anybody's guess what they will surprise us with next!

Video Photography Omri Escalante

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Ladies Who Lunch: Kareena's Trends Spring 2012!

Kareena’s Trends, an LA based company specializing in tunics and kaftans, presented its Spring 2012 Collection at Style Fashion Week LA last October.  The simplicity of a tunic or kaftan belies the complex details that go into each and everyone of Kareena’s Trends garments!

The line is produced in India, where each garment is hand dyed and hand embroidered, one by one.  Using the finest silks and cottons, Kareena’s Trends then dyes the fabrics in vibrant and rich colors.  The garments are then hand embroidered and hand embellished with sequins, precious gems and crystals.  At Kareena’s Trends  no two garments are identical, making every garment a special work of art.  

The versatile line is perfect for poolside cover-ups, daily errands, relaxed entertaining and even dressier evening affairs.  Discover Kareena’s Trends and add a little exotic glamour to your wardrobe!

Video Photography Diana Canchola

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Ladies Who Lunch: Furne One Spring 2012!

Tonight I will be attending the runway show for the Furne One Fall 2012 Collection at Style Fashion Week LA.  But before moving on to Fall, I wanted to share Furne One’s Spring 2012 Collection with you.

Prior to last October’s Style Fashion Week LA show, I frankly had never heard of Furne One.  So when the runway show was added to the schedule midweek, I didn’t pay much attention to it.  I was already scheduled to attend the the show prior to Furne One’s, so I figured it would be interesting to check out!  Boy was I in for a surprise!

In 1994, Furne One, a native of the Phillipines, won the Mega Magazine Young Designers Competition with the prize being a trip to Paris. He used the opportunity to train in Paris and then on to New York for an apprenticeship with famed designer Josie Natori.  Eventually moving to Dubai, he opened his own fashion house, catering to a clientele of wealthy Arabic women and expats.

Furne One’s Haute Couture skills are evident in his meticulously draped and heavily embellished gowns and his love for  theatricality imbues his collections with a sense of fantasy and drama.  With celebrities Jennifer Lopez and Katy Perry already wearing his gowns, Furne One is ready to launch his collections to a US Market.  Get ready for a brilliant, over the top collection that will truly make you ooooh and ahhhhh!

Video Photography Diana Canchola

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Ladies Who Lunch: Nicolita Spring 2012!

Designer Nicole DiRocco established Nicolita Swimwear in 2003 and for the last seven seasons has created a line of conservatively sexy and curve conscious styles.  Drawing on her family’s Cuban roots for inspiration, Di Rocco’s Nicolita Swimwear line blends vintage glamour with modern day silhouettes.

Presenting her collection for Spring 2012 at Style Fashion Week LA, Nicole drew her inspiration from a trip to three Caribbean locales: Trinidad, Sinfuegos and Havana.  Havana was the inspiration for the colors, Trinidad inspired the glitz and glamour and Sinfuegos inspired the nautical pieces.  Ruffled bikini tops and bottoms, as well as ruffled accents on suits gave the collection a true Caribbean feel and the bright colors mixed with black white and navygave the collection a vibrancy that will make it a stand-out on beaches everywhere!

Designed for curvaceous figures, it is no wonder that Nicolita has attracted a wide customer base including numerous celebrities.

Video Photography Diana Canchola

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Ladies Who Lunch: Style Fashion Week LA Fall 2012!

I have been posting videos from the Spring 2012 Collections at Los Angeles Fashion Week as those collections are coming into the stores right now!  But let’s not forget that Los Angeles Fashion Week for Fall 2012 is going on all this week and I will again be covering it all for you!

My focus will be on the events produced by Style Fashion Week LA, now in its third season in a row!  As with the previous two seasons, Style Fashion Week LA will be held downtown at Vibiana (214 S. Main Street), a historic cathedral that was turned into a wonderful event space.  The six day event will feature daily exhibits of featured artists, signature cocktails, luxury product displays and of course world class fashion shows by designers from Los Angeles and New York to Dubai!

The week will kick off tonight with a VIP invite only reception at a private estate in Bel Air, benefitting Hollywood Arts, a non-profit organization that supports underprivileged youth through arts-based learning.  The evening will include a Gibson sponsored performance by itunes sensation Tim Blaine, Louis XIII Cognac tasting, a jewelry showcase by exclusive jeweler Martin Katz, handcrafted artisan chocolates by Knipschildt, a chocolate fountain by Brunch Butler, freshly prepared cuisine by French Master Chef Philippe Forcioli of the famed Orient Express, Jean Georges  and Cipriani and the Vintage Yachting Club will be offering memberships to their elite global yachting excursions!  In addition, the Getty publication “Herb Ritts: L.A. Style”, a collection of portraits and nudes from the famed photographer and related to an upcoming exhibit on Ritts at the Getty Center in April will be on display, as well as original cover art from famed Beatles Illustrator Alan Aldridge and sculptures from artist Niki Sabet.

Starting Monday evening, the week of fantastic runway shows will kick off with the Fall 2012 Collections of Stop Staring! and Ina Soltani. The week will continue with shows by XCVI, L’une by Anh Volcek, Madison Park Collective, Skingraft, MILA , Octavio Carlin and Dubai designer Furne One’s Amato!  The week will end with the Go Red for Women Celebrity Red Dress Fashion Show benefitting the American Heart Association, sponsored by Sexy Hair, makeup sponsor Gleam by Melanie Mills and shoes provided by ShoeDazzle!

Let the games begin!!

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Ladies Who Lunch: Octavio Carlin Spring 2012!

The name Octavio Carlin might be new to you, but this Los Angeles based designer has had his own label for the last 10 years and has dressed many celebrities including Sharon Stone and Paris Hilton.  The native of Mexico City started out his career as a child actor, moved to LA to continue acting as an adult, worked in interior design and then costume design before pursuing a design career in fashion.  This diverse background in the arts and design is reflective in Octavio Carlin’s work, giving his collections a focus and richness that makes it so appealing.

For his Spring 2012 Collection presented at Style Fashion Week LA, Mr. Carlin was inspired by a mix of art deco and art nouveau, approaching it in a very architectural manner.  With a clear emphasis on drape, silhouettes are body conscious but flowing, skimming the body and creating movement.  Bold prints and stripes add another dimension to the collection, emphasizing the art deco inspiration and giving the collection more visual depth.

Mr. Carlin’s chose a sophisticated color palate for Spring 2012 with darks and brights mixing equally throughout the collection.  The strongest colors in the collection are plum, deep blue and yellow, with black and white brining it all together.

The Octavio Carlin Spring 2012 collection exudes a sophisticated sexiness and I expect to see many of these dresses and gowns on the red carpet!

Video Photography Diana Canchola

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Ladies Who Lunch: Stop Staring! Spring 2012

Honestly, before the Fall 2011 runway show at Style Fashion Week LA, I had not even heard of Stop Staring!.  As I mingled with other guests, I was very aware of a large number of the women wearing very sexy, form fitting garments.  And while some of them were model thin, there were also women of all shapes and sizes wearing similar outfits and all looked equally stunning.  While being completely modern and of the moment, the outfits all had a vintage essence to them that harkened back to old Hollywood glamour.

Then I saw the Stop Staring! runway show and realized that the guests in the audience were all customers of this brand that transformed all of them into Hollywood Starlets.  Designer Alicia Estrada created the company in 1977 and has been gaining a loyal following ever since, from Nicole Kidman and Christina Aguilera to everyday women across the globe

At prices that are consistently affordable, adding a Stop Staring! dress or outfit to your wardrobe won’t break the bank!  The Sheath All That Dress is a good example of the Stop Staring! style at an affordable $149.00.  But who can put a price on glamour? :)
With an emphasis on figure flattering garments, Alicia Estrada creates outfits that embrace the female form with designs that are vintage inspired yet timeless and classic.  For Spring 2012, the Stop Staring! collection continues to delight with its signature style while adding in bold prints and new drapes.  The show was presented at Style Fashion Week LA and began with an introduction by comedienne Lisa Ann Walter, looking fantastic in a Stop Staring dress!

Watch the Ladies Who Lunch/ video of show with interview of designer Alicia Estrada and find out why you too will become a fan of Stop Staring!.

Video Photography by Diana Canchola

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Ladies Who Lunch: Style Fashion Week LA Spring 2012!

Los Angeles Fashion Week has always been a hit or miss affair.  Mercedes Benz and IMG upped the ante when they came to town and put on a fashion week event that had all of the trappings of fashion weeks in other major cities, finally giving LA/California designers a good location to present their lines.

But when Mercedes Benz/IMG left Los Angeles, Fashion Week in LA went back to being almost a non-event.  That is until Style Fashion Week LA came on the scene!

Style Fashion Week LA debuted in March of 2011, presenting the Fall 2011 Collections of Los Angeles and California based designers.  Veronica Welch and her team from Bubblefish Media put on a week long event that finally brought professionalism, fun and glamour back to Los Angeles Fashion Week.  The downtown venue for the events was Vibiana, a historic church that has been transformed into a beautiful and sophisticated event space; a perfect match for Style Fashion Week LA.

After that successful first season, Style Fashion Week LA came back in October 2011 to present the Spring 2012 Collections of a diverse group of designers, including Stop Staring, Gypsy 05, Octavio Carlin and Furne OneTune in for complete coverage of all of those shows, as their merchandise hits the stores for Spring.

Also, learn more about Style Fashion Week LA as it begins its 3rd season this month, presenting the Fall 2012 Collections!