March 31, 2010

Knit Wit

I'm loving Karla Spectic's amazing knits for FW 2010. The shapes are perfect, and the colors so sweet. I'm going to run out and DYI a cardigan similar to this!

It's almost enough to make me wish I hadn't missed that knitwear class in third year of Fashion Design school!! (via)

March 19, 2010

MSRP (Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price)

Last year, I touched upon the question of retail pricing in a blog post that was meant to voice some confusion and uncertainty about the value of the fashion goods we consume. Unlike the prices of vegetables for example, which become cheaper when they are in season and more expensive the rest of the year (a pricing system that pretty much makes sense), apparel prices are linked to perceived value, the product's desired placement within the market (which is why the certain brands are priced higher in some countries but not others), and the idea of built-in obsolescence.

Today, on Fashionista, there is a great article looking at the recent court rulings on the disputes between luxury fashion brands and retailers on the idea of a suggested retail price (and minimum pricing thresholds). (As an aside, I really enjoy Lauren Sherman's posts on the business of fashion, and her perspective from her experience at magazines such as Forbes seems to have really shaped the fashion coverage on Fashionista.)

When I was young, I just assumed that the MSRP was just the price an item is "worth" and what I would have to spend to acquire that product. The issues were just whether I could afford it, and if I wanted to own it. Then, over time, I learned about profit margins and mark-ups in fashion school, found out about sales, EBay and off-price stores such as TJ Maxx, and was invited to sample sales where goods were marked down anywhere from 50 to 95% off. Now, for me and I think most shoppers, the MSRP is just a starting point, to be supplemented with coupons and flash sales and discount codes...which I'm sure is a scary thought for retailers and designers.

Above, an oft-quoted artwork by conceptual artist Barbara Kruger.

March 18, 2010

Ethereal Beauty

It's not rocket science, but I love these Vogue Australia photos from their April 2010 issue. The colors, the blurry edges and soft lighting. They may not be avant-garde or novel, but I was mesmerized (and motivated to shop!) after looking at this fashion story.

And maybe that's how it should be.

March 17, 2010

Changes at W Magazine

Today's WWD reports that W Magazine will soon become more like Conde Nast's other consumer titles, and move out of the Fairchild Fashion Group which is to focus more on its business-to-business core (Conde inherited W when it purchased Fairchild Publications, which also includes WWD, years ago). There is a restructuring planned, and it seems like Patrick McCarthy will only remain as chairman "through the end of the year" and a new "editor in chief of W will be named" shortly.

It will be interesting to see what these changes will mean for Conde's most fashion-forward and only larger-format publication...

March 14, 2010

All in the details!

I love the lady-like, sophisticated looks that prevailed this season on the international runways. Because it was all about the luxurious fabrics and amazing tailoring details, I felt like the accessories weren't as dramatic this season - and certainly nothing as amazing as Spring 2010's Alexander McQueen lobster claw shoes! Nevertheless, there was a plethora of wearable, chic, classic accessories that helped designers to complete the look. Below are some of my favorites.

Personally, this is what I'm going to start keeping my eyes out for NOW in vintage stores, consignment shops and discount outlets, so that I will be ready for Fall (and still stick to a budget) when it rolls around!

1. Anything with fur or shearling.
2. Voluminous leather gloves.
3. Skinny, well-made belts with no frills but luxurious finishing.
4. The perfect clutch.