Thursday 2 june 4 02 /06 /Jun 22:40

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Franca Sozzani, the brilliant and beautiful editor of Vogue Italia, has put three models who clearly don't say "no" to gnocchi on this month's cover. Ms Sozzani started a campaign against pro-anorexia websites in March with the goal of getting legislation passed to shut them down. She explicitly created this cover to promote it. The cause is indisputably admirable and important. The magazine is a great platform as, even though the readership of Vogue Italia is small compared to that of it's international cousins, the controversial themes get major press (remember 2008's  "All Black" issue? Or the H1N1-inspired 2009 cover?). However, this is still a trio of voluptuous models in lingerie on the cover of a magazine aimed at women. A fashion magazine!

 

This isn't fashion. Where are this season's uplifting, vibrantly-coloured clothes? Who among Vogue's fashion-obsessed fanbase wants to look at soft-focus lingerie shots? Moreover, I'm not sure how this will help change the law. How about enlisting a female politician or celebrity spokesperson? Someone like Erin O' Connor, who has done wonderful work with the British Fashion Council to keep models safe and healthy. In Italy, isn't Emma Bonino pretty cool about this kind of thing?

 

There are many, many magazines that display this sort of cover monthly and they're the top-shelf variety. I doubt many women feel better about their bodies seeing scantily-clad centerfolds than they do reed-limbed catwalkers. Especially if they're naturally thin and small-bosomed. This is my plea for balance. Surely the safest look to promote is fit, well-dressed and impeccably groomed. I understand where Ms Sozzani is coming from but if she wants to promote a healthy body image why not follow Anna Wintour's lead and put a female athlete/ glowing, toned celebrity on the cover?

By Rosalind M
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Thursday 7 april 4 07 /04 /Apr 21:52

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Rodarte is available to buy online from today at Net-a-Porter. There’s just six pieces on the site right now, I hope they make more available, I don’t think they do the collection justice with this selection. The Mulleavy sisters are the most cerebral, selfless female designers I’ve ever come across. I don’t mean female designers are typically selfish but that they habitually project themselves onto each collection. Donna Karan, for example, will always dress a smart working woman; Carolina Herrera will always dress a Venezuelan Lady of the Manor, etc.

Not Kate and Laura. In the six years since Rodarte started, they've dressed aliens, Hammer Horror stars and ballerinas. Such is their success that Natalie Portman and most of Hollywood’s pretty young things have worn them on the red carpet. They haven’t grown complacent. In a 2009 interview, Laura told me she dreams of dressing Winston Churchill.  

 The Rodarte sisters may not be glamorous (they favour Hanes, Target and Converse for everyday wear) but they’re more cultured than Chinese pearls. They’re such fans of la nouvelle vague that they created t-shirts to celebrate the re-release of Breathless. They got their own exhibit at the Smithsonian's Cooper Hewitt National Design Museum last year.Last month, they opened a second exhibition at Los Angeles' Museum of Contemporary Art. So it makes perfect sense that Harvey Nichols would launch their S/S 2011 collection with an installation by Fiona Leahy. The Tipperary-born set designer use warm redwood and glass to reflect the designers’ childhood in Northern California. There are 70’s kitsch ornaments about too, which definitely contrast with all things Harvey Nichols. Fiona also decked out The Row’s Harvey Nichols launch for the Olsen twins and Mark Ronson’s birthday party last year. Plus, Piers Adams from the fabulous Mahiki says she’s a genius. Can you get higher praise for your set?

 

Picture courtesy of Grazia Daily

By Rosalind M
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Wednesday 30 march 3 30 /03 /Mar 14:53

When I was a work experience girl at Condé Nast during university, my co-interns and I wanted to grow up to be Louise Roe. At the time, she was most famous for presenting The Clothes Show, her Sunday Mirror column and her Vogue.com interviews. We used to tote swag couriered from designers and makeup companies to her heaving desk. She was rarely in Vogue House but always friendly and bubbly when we did see her there. Our goal seemed lofty but achievable.She was once an intern too, for Elle. In the last 3 years, she's gone bi-coastal. She's been on The City, E! and various makeover and fashion shows.

Yesterday, I opened Glamour UK and there she was in high-gloss, sat next to her frenemy, Olivia Palermo, and dressed in Hogan.Someone at the Italian label noticed her caramel skin and blinding teeth and had the good sense to offer her a modeling contract. Probably Diego Della Valle himself. Cheese and rice, Louise, can you raise the bar a bit higher? I can still make it out. 

The pictures aren't online yet so here she is in Manish Aurora and glamazing Versace platforms at the Costume Designers Guild Awards in Beverly Hills last month:

 

http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-tnU87gl5p7Q/TWabRYKrsZI/AAAAAAABEH8/el_LuWrmkgs/s640/louise%2Broe.jpg

Image courtesy of HouseofFabulous.com

 

 

The best of her reality TV efforts is Plain Jane, in which she makes over a "Jane" and sets them up on a blind date with their crush. Which sounds painfully awkward but plays out quite sweetly. She is very funny, which offsets the inevitable cringe-factor. Also, she's got good old-fashioned ideas about getting dressed up and dating and dispenses very valuable shoe advice.The second season starts mid-summer, and she wants to do "Plain Joe" and "Plain Gay" spin-offs at some point. Even Olivia has to concede: she rocks.

By Rosalind M
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