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Blogging the Costume Institute's ‘Blog.mode’ Exhibit


The Metropolitan Museum of Art Costume Institute's "blog.mode" exhibit opens today, and to give you a sneak peek, we sent our Fabiola Beracasa to check it out. Click above to watch as curator Andrew Bolton explains how hooker boots from the twenties influenced modern fashion and why the controversial "Incubus Necklace" was impounded by police the first time it was shown to the public. blog.mode: Addressing Fashion [Video Archives] Update: You may be wondering, as we were, why the Costume Institute exhibition is actually called "blog.mode: addressing fashion." It's because the exhibit is interactive, and you can write about your reactions and inspirations at a "blog bar" in the museum. Mmm. Blog Bar. Sounds unhealthy and delicious.

The Fab Life: Manhattan Vintage Clothing Show

Fashion Video
New York fashion correspondent (and socialite extraordinaire) Fabiola Beracasa knows vintage. So we sent her along to the Manhattan Vintage Clothing and Textile Show to look at what's available and dole out some advice. "There's something sexy about plaid on a girl," Fab explains, checking out a cowboy shirt. Watch the video to see why you should shop for linens at antique shops and how to tell the difference between Chanel Couture and Chanel Boutique (it's easier than you think!). The Fab Life: Vintage Clothing Show [Fashion Video]

Footage From London Fashion Week

Christopher Kane
Last week's mix of shows, parties, models, and high-heel-induced blisters may have left you in a haze — and in massive fashion withdrawal. Luckily, our pals across the pond put on their own Fashion Week, with freakier clothes, wilder makeup, and, let's face it — a lot more fun. Couldn't get your passport in order? Check out our runway videos and interviews with the designers, from stately Paul Smith to monochromatic Sinha Stanic (where a stampede nearly caused a real fashion emergency). What was Christopher Kane (see above) thinking with the chiffon and snakeskin combo? Did Eley Kishimoto drop acid and take a trip down Strawberry Fields? Watch the videos to find out. And check out slideshows of all the London collections. Video: Christopher Kane Collection Videos: The London Collections [Archive]

There She Is, Your Overdressed Pet

The imprecisely named Pet Fashion Week was held in New York over the weekend — perhaps two days to a human is like seven days to a dog? — and New York's Elizabeth Cline was there for the big pet fashion show Saturday night. What was the scene like backstage? About what you'd expect. Take a look; it'll make your Monday. Backstage: Pet Fashion Week [NYM]

Saks Loads Up on Logos at New Shoe Department

The new shoe department at Saks opened this morning, and, much as we'd love to gush about it, we can't. Don't get us wrong: It's nice. It's very nice, and it's a major upgrade from the well-to-do-suburban-mom- attempting-to-be-fashionable selection the store formerly offered. But we're shoe addicts, and we were expecting more. The floor was buzzing with camera crews, waiters were serving breakfast munchies, and salespeople were announcing every two seconds how proud they were of the new space. They had the patent-leather Miu Miu spectators for sale, and the two-tone Pradas with the curved heel. They even had our knee-high Chloé boots, with the gold zipper going up the calf. But what they also had was way too many logos for our taste: Gucci, Chanel, and Dior; sneakers, loafers, and ballet flats.

It's Evan Rachel Wood at a ‘New York’ Fashion Shoot

New York's fall fashion issue is out next week, and its theme is edge. Who better to embody the concept than actress Evan Rachel Wood? Not only does she appear soaked in blood in her boyfriend Marilyn Manson's videos, she's also starring this September as a naïf turned radical in Across the Universe, Julie Taymor's trippy take on the songs of the Beatles. How did Wood practice for the shoot? "I've been watching a lot of America's Next Top Model and taking notes," she told New York fashion director Harriet Mays Powell. Watch the video for a sneak peek and more on Wood's personal style. Photo Shoot: Fall 2007 Fashion Issue [NYM]

Video: Inside Proenza Schouler's Dark Resort Collection

Proenza Schouler
At Proenza Schouler's studio recently, New York's fashion director Harriet Mays Powell found designers Lazaro Hernandez and Jack McCollough with a dark resort collection. "We're just really attracted to dark colors," McCollough said. "We like tons of grays." A new metallic tank top displayed the duo's high-low aesthetic. "We're inspired by the idea of mid-century couture," Hernandez said. "Mixing that sensibility with the reality that we're kids from the nineties and it’s a dressed-down generation." See three new Proenza garments and hear more from the designers by watching the video. Fashion Studio: Proenza Schouler [NYM]

CFDA Welcomes New Members, Prepares for the Tents

As New York's fashion designers count the days till Fashion Week, which starts this year on September 5, two days after Labor Day, battles for models and tent times are heating up. But at the Council of Fashion Designers of America's party for new members at Diane von Furstenberg's studio last night, no one would name — and only a few would acknowledge — the most diva-ish designers, who politick to cast and schedule most fiercely. "There are model problems sometimes," acknowledged Stan Herman, a board member and former president. "There are time-slot problems sometimes. There are moments that designers go, 'I can't show next to that person' or 'I won't show next to that person.' But not very many."

Nicole Miller Likes to Show in the Early Evening

It's still early summertime, which makes even the most precocious among us think ahead only to this fall — except for fashion designers, who are all prepping their spring 2008 lines (which, natch, they'll show this fall). We bumped into Nicole Miller the other night, at the Soho Grand after the Interview screening, and she told us all about planning a new show — the science of picking dates and times, and the dreaded curse of model-hoarding.

Anna Sui Opens Macy's Art Exhibit, Loves Psychedelia

The Herald Square Macy's — New York's great middlebrow shopping mecca — is now, perhaps surprisingly, the place where high fashion meets high art. The department store has installed pieces by contemporary artists like Misaki Kawai and Shannon Plumb in its windows, and at a Q&A session to launch the "Art Under Glass" exhibition, designer Anna Sui touted both the project as well as an upcoming retrospective of her work, which Macy’s will display during Fashion Week in September.

Fabiola on Fashion: Dispatches From the European Couture Shows

Fab Couture
With the European couture collections almost finished — Valentino will wind things up tomorrow with a show in Rome — fashion correspondent Fabiola Beracasa checked in with Daily Intel via BlackBerry last night. What follows are highlights from Beracasa's lengthy account of fabulousness — we're holding the rest back because we don't want to blind readers with too much of the lavish excess. So what did Fab learn this year? That even when you pack 28 dresses, you still forget the right one; that military outfits are hot; and that the power of Karl Lagerfeld's genius extends even to the weather. After the jump, her lessons from this season's runways.

Feathers and Ruffles and Discounts! Cavalli to Design for H&M

Cavalli Collection
Shoppers, mark your calendars. On November 8, H&M will unveil a new collaboration with Roberto Cavalli, the chain announced this morning. "The Roberto Cavalli collections represent an exuberant, successful lifestyle," H&M's design chief, Margareta van den Bosch, said in the announcement — which is something of an understatement. Cavalli has cultivated a notoriously wild aesthetic — his latest collection featured cowboy hats, leopard-print trapeze coats, skintight, sequined gowns, and jodhpurs — and one wonders how H&M's mass clientele will react. Should we expect watered-down versions of these outrageous efforts, or will Cavalli stretch outside his trademark sensibility and design for everywoman? His canned quotes shed no light. "I love freedom and challenges: breaking down barriers, experimenting in different directions," he said in the statement. The new collection "will add a dash of festivity and dreams." Of course. —Kendall Herbst

Americans Persistently Uninterested in Victoria Beckham

The jury is still out on whether Americans can be forced to care about David Beckham — the whiny-voiced British footballer plays his last game for Real Madrid this weekend, after which he'll descend upon L.A. — but if yesterday's Saks Fifth Avenue appearance is any indication, we've already made up our minds about his wife, Victoria. The former Spice Girl was there to launch her new sunglasses and denim line, DVB, and initially it seemed as if a lot of people showed up. But as we listened closely to the confused buzzing behind cell-phone-camera flashes, giggles, and tittering from starstruck shoppers, we overheard one person explaining that "Angelina Jolie is here to promote her new clothes," while a Saks security guy admitted, "We've got people all the way down the block. But it's majority press that's here."

What to Wear to Turks and Caicos

Resort Collections
Behind closed showroom doors (and in the Santa Monica airport), designers have been showing off their resort and cruise collections the last few weeks. The lines are bright, colorful, and chock-full of obscenely expensive bikinis. We hit up the target demographic — Fabiola Beracasa and Byrdie Bell — to see what the ladies planned to buy for their next vacations.

Fashion Studio: Narciso Rodriguez

Narciso Rodriguez
Designer Narciso Rodriguez partnered with Liz Claiborne last month, and New York fashion director Harriet Mays Powell visited his studio recently to discuss the new venture. Rodriguez, who has maintained a minimalist aesthetic for over a decade, first became averse to trends while working in Paris. "There was so much creativity on the runway, but no clothing," Rodriguez recalls. "When you can dress people, then you've done your job." Fashion Studio: Narciso Rodriguez [NYM]

Walking the CFDA Red Carpet With Jack, Lazaro, and Oprah

The big winner at the CFDA awards last night was … well, actually, it was two winners: The venerable Oscar de la Renta shared the Best Picture–ish womenswear award with Proenza Schouler whippersnappers Jack McCollough and Lazaro Hernandez. Ralph Lauren won for menswear, Derek Lam for accessories, and Lauren was awarded the first-ever Fashion Legend Award. But the real question remains: What did they all wear? Our fashion folks can answer that for you, no problem. Check out our CFDA slideshow to see what Ralph, Derek, Jack, Lazaro, Oscar, Anna, Oprah, Tinsley, and many, many others wore on last night's red carpet. The 2007 CFDA Fashion Awards [Slideshow]

An Accessories Grudge Match at CFDA Awards

Every June, the CFDA awards bring the fashion world to a screeching halt. Who'll win? Will there be catfights? Whom is Anna Wintour voting for? This year, the answer to every question: Who cares? Though top designers will win on Monday — Oscar de la Renta battles Marc Jacobs and Proenza Schouler for "Womenswear Designer of the Year," while Phillip Lim, Thakoon, and Rodarte compete for the Swarovski Womenswear Award (for "emerging new talent") — there'll be no big shocking upset.

Isaac Mizrahi's Not a Middle Man

Isaac Mizrahi
A few years ago, Isaac Mizrahi's Target collection became a "paradigm-shifting event," the designer told New York's fashion director Harriet Mays Powell. But between couture and clothes that retail for less than $30, what happened to the middle? "When you get old, you figure out you'd better do your own thing or you're going to be miserable," Mizrahi says. "That's just a matter of being honest." To preview some new looks and to find out how Mizrahi lives his high-low aesthetic at home, watch the video. Fashion Studio: Isaac Mizrahi [Video]