The Fashion Trail | Vancouver’s Fashion Community Comes Together

VANCOUVER, Canada — It’s always nice to come home. Longtime BoF readers will have noticed that each summer, BoF tends to publish a few articles on the Canadian fashion scene. But for the first time, this year’s trip home also included a wonderful event generously hosted and organised by Alexandra Suhner Isenberg, who started writing her blog Searching For Style after more than ten years of studying and working in London

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The Fashion Trail | Made in Fair Isle

Fair Isle jumpers | Source: A Blog for English Lovers

FAIR ISLE, United Kingdom — On the most remote inhabited island in Britain, 24 miles south of the Shetland mainland, 27 miles north of the Orkney Islands and 250 miles west of Norway, it’s always sweater season. With 600-foot cliffs overlooking the North Sea, thousands of acres of peat bog and a climate that’s perennially cool and damp, Fair Isle is a rugged place where wool is a way of life. For centuries, the island’s resourceful

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The Fashion Trail | Indonesia, Land of Batik, Bandung and BlackBerries

Indonesian Streetstyle in Bandung, West Java | Source: BoF

JAKARTA, Indonesia — Amongst the facts about Indonesia that one finds repeated in tourist guidebooks, country profiles and international news reports are the following: For over 350 years, Indonesia was occupied by the Dutch, and for a few years after that during WWII, by the Japanese. The Indonesian archipelago of 17,000 islands is home to more than 240 million people, making it the world’s fourth most populous country.

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The Fashion Trail | Vancouver’s Digital Olympics

Vancouver Red Mittens | Source: Hudson's Bay Company

VANCOUVER, Canada — Every two years that global extravaganza called the Olympic Games alternates between summer and winter sports. Next in line is Vancouver which will host the XXI Olympic Winter Games between 12-28 February 2010, costing the city in excess of $1.5 billion. Over the weekend, Tyler Brûlé reckoned in the Financial Times that Canada is wasting an opportunity to re-brand itself to the world, using the Olympics as a

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The Fashion Trail | Postcript on Pitti

Giles Deacon At Pitti | Source: The Business of Fashion

FLORENCE, Italy — In the world of menswear, January is a full-on month of trade fairs and fashion shows. The super-charged schedule of activities begins with Pitti Uomo, continues on to Milan where mega Italian brands like Gucci, Prada and Armani unveil their collections, and concludes with a bang in Paris, where established Parisian fashion houses like Lanvin and Dior Homme show alongside a cornucopia of international designers

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In Conversation with Ruth Hogben, Fashion Filmmaker"

Watch in High Quality at LONDON, United Kingdom — Digital fashion film has gained real momentum over the last couple of seasons. Using sound and movement to communicate fashion in a way that’s emotionally charged, cost-effective and easily distributed, the format has been adopted for online editorial and fashion week presentations alike. But it’s important to remember that new formats are only as

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Sophie Theallet | Uniquely Untrendy

Sophie Theallet

NEW YORK, United States — New York fashion is said to strike a balance between commerce and creativity. With few exceptions, New York designers tend to prioritise practical concerns like wearability over more frivolous concerns like the so-called wow factor. On the surface, this seems like a sound business strategy. But when designers focus too much on the practical and are obsessed with being on-trend or with what their peers are

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Louis Vuitton and Keith Richards | Viral marketing magic

By now, everyone has seen the striking Annie Leibovitz portrait of Keith Richards, his electric guitar, and his monogrammed Louis Vuitton guitar case. It is the fourth in a series of ads that have featured Mikhail Gorbachev, Catherine Deneuve, and tennis powercouple, Steffi Graf and Andre Agassi. The ads have been in almost every respected magazine and newspaper imaginable, the Richards image is the current homepage image for the Louis Vuitton website, and the former Rolling Stone is blown up to two story proportions as the hoarding in front of the soon-to-be-expanded Louis Vuitton store on London's Bond Street. But somehow, I did miss this YouTube video which goes behind-the-scenes to show how Leibovitz worked her photographic magic with a…

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Everybody’s talking about | Fashion phones

[caption id="" align="alignnone" width="500" caption="Nokia 7900 Crystal Prism Phone"][/caption] LONDON, United Kingdom - Something is in the air. Earlier this week, we received a mysterious package in the post from Nokia. Inside, we found a 7900 Crystal Prism phone, complete with a Sapphire crystal and engraved design by French graphic designer Frederique Daubal, who has previously collaborated with Paul Smith and Colette, the iconic Paris fashion concept boutique. Not only this, the fashion and technology blogosphere has been abuzz about Tag Heuer's branded mobile phone, priced to compete with the Vertu phones, at 3900 euros (or about $6000). Previously, other fashion brands including Prada, Armani, and Levis have launched mobile phones with much hype and fanfare. To top it all…

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Everybody’s talking about | Men’s underwear

[caption id="" align="alignnone" width="500" caption="David Beckham billboard in Milan, courtesy of Emporio Armani"][/caption] MILAN, Italy - Every once in a while, we notice the media -- all kinds of media from blogs to arty fashion mags to the mainstream press -- talking about the same topic in a contemporaneous burst of discussion. In the past few days, the talk has been about men's underwear. Or rather, the advertising campaigns behind this burgeoning business segment. Not since the 1980's and Bruce Weber's campaigns for Calvin Klein have we seen so much media interest in men's underpants.  Tim Blanks explores the subject at length in VMAN's Fall/Winter 2007 issue in The History of the Male Supermodel. And, according to an article in today's…

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New York Fashion Week: Marc Jacobs is backwards, upside down and inside out

Last night I witnessed the intricate ballet of savvy PR and event-planning that has helped build Marc Jacobs into one of the only truly successful, global luxury brands that has been launched in the past 20 years. It was evidence of the basic human psychological desire to be part of the cool crowd. You know those nightclubs that intentionally keep people waiting outside to give off the impression of being the hot spot of the moment? This was not all that different, except Marc Jacobs has been doing this for almost 20 years, and he has it down to a fine art. Plus, this is not just hype. He has a reputation for delivering collections that will inspire designers and…

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Bahamian luxury: Gambling with franchising

The Business of Fashion is on the road. Our first stop is in Nassau, the capital city of The Bahamas, an archipelago of islands which has long been a stopping off point for people cruising around the Caribbean. San Salvador Island is where Christopher Columbus first set foot in the New World in 1492 to trade with the Lucayan people. When British loyalists came over in 1717, the islands fell under British control and did not gain full independence until more than 250 years later. Today, the Bahamas is a rich country, with the 3rd highest GDP per capita in the Western Hemisphere and an economy driven primarily by tourism and offshore banking. A recent mega real-estate development called The…

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YSL: Interactive experimentation

For years now, the Yves Saint-Laurent brand has been a drag on the otherwise strong results posted by many other fashion brands in the Gucci Group, owned by parent-company PPR. Most recently, Bottega Veneta has been on a tear with strong financial results (eclipsing YSL's top line revenue in 2006) and a leading position in the luxury consumer league tables, making it the number two luxury brand in PPR's stable. The story for YSL is a lot less fairytale, and a lot more Nightmare on Elm Street. The brand has not been profitable since Gucci Group purchased it in 1999 and is still reportedly losing around €50m a year. The brand turned over €194m in sales in 2006. PPR doesn't…

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