Paris Fashion Week Fall/Winter 2015

Let it be that milestone moment of Donatella Versace sitting front row for Vaccarello’s first collection, since officially being appointed Versus Versace creative director, to begin Paris Fashion Week F/W 2015. Unlike New York fashion week’s oversize jumpers shrugging loosely over models’ shoulders, Paris seemed to reside in the tailored world of blacks. Vaccarello’s recent travels to the American West brought a, somewhat, rock ‘n’ roll vibe, where subtle, and not-so-subtle, metal stars encroach on the dresses of the collection. However, Vaccarello’s signature cutouts became a focal point – slim industrialized half-belts resting on the waist and the harsh angular shoulders formed the dominatrix attitude that now proceeds to challenge the sensuality of Italian craftsmanship.

Disproportionate wafts of felt, poplin, ribbed knits and corduroy stitched together, as a na├»ve youth would have done in Kindergarten art class, came hand in hand with the bare breasted models of Parisian fashion label Jacquemus’ collection. Unlike the usual orange pink hues and geometric aptitude of designer Simon Porte, this Fall collection dwells in the far-from-systematic realms of fashion land, where his style of dilapidated chaos is swooned over. Nevertheless, this seemingly childish parcel of amusement had an added visionary texture. Berlin-based photographer Sebastian Bieniek’s “Doublefaced” series was central inspiration in Lyne Desnoyers, MAC makeup artist’s, graphic kohl facial art that endearingly complimented the abstract jigsaw puzzle atmosphere.

DIOR’S ODE TO AUSTIN POWERS

Camouflaging in the psychedelic realm that could easily be mistaken for the sixties, Raf Simons’, of Dior, F/W 2015 collection traversed into an intoxicating vibrancy that could only be described as an ode to Austin Power’s infamous mojo. One of which radiated sexuality, nevertheless, subdued in the refined tailoring of Dior craftsmanship. A skintight suit of fluorescent orange, moss green and white marbling, sultry in stature, is definitely not for the faint-hearted. While the acrylic-like mesh high neck, sleeveless tops in washed greens and pinks were paired with ink blotted mid calf skirts, broke up the bright colour blocking and brought back elements of the clean-cut atmosphere from Spring 2015 Ready-to-wear.

On another note, however, Simon’s collaborative effort with Danish Textile Company Kvadrat came with a sophisticated tweak, as androgynous suits and F/W coats were constructed with tweed combinations of soft pastels and condiment colours of mustard and tomato.

Although, in this ordered disorder of fanciful design, what seemed to be the focus, and presumably the next style phenomenon in the 2015 fashion game, was the vinyl knee-high and ankle boots. Paired with the seemingly Veruschka-like inspired doll-eyed, “color-blocked arches of opaque eye shadow”, the collection of boots glossed there way up to the pinnacle of fashion heaven.

BALMAIN FALL 2015 PARIS FASHION WEEK

Pleats, stripes and diamond tassels are back, according to Oliver Rousteing of world-renowned fashion label Balmain. With a fifty-piece collection, Rousteing took an alternate route after last years Fall/Winter khaki and leather basket weave constructions.

The recent Fall/Winter 2015 collection, however, “celebrate[s] that Parisian tradition as well as the evolution of [the] city into a truly global melting pot.” This collection is of passionate colour, not only visually but also conceptually. At first glance, under the dim yellow hues of the runway lights, the seventies inspired flares and breaths of diamond-stringed fabric in coral, mustard and fuchsia seemed to be one of the cool and groovy nature. However, Rousteing released a statement to journalists where he spoke about recent events in Paris, and so, “that open-minded spirit” and “defending essential liberties” is a driving force of the seventies inspired diversity and strength.

Each design came out empowering and unwavering; nevertheless, still bringing a soft pleated touch in the high-waist pants and the envious gleam of the audiences’ eyes seemed to reflect off the kaleidoscopic copper-beaded fringing. One cannot fault the precision to detail and pure talent of such an influential designer in our generation, one that will continue, year after year, to incite, intrigue and shock the fashion world.

Izo

http://www.izokoji.com

Wholesale Fashion Jewelry – 5 Shortcuts to Retail Success

Something in the human spirit is always itching for independence and this itch translates to a constant flow of new entrepreneurs that so often gravitate towards fashion jewelry. What is so irresistible about this accessory? Beyond the high profit margins that wholesale fashion jewelry can open for retailers lies an intrinsic beauty that creates truly wearable art. Yes, wholesale fashion jewelry offers plenty of profit potential that enables retailers to turn small investments into the longest mark-up in the fashion industry, but the magic of fashion jewelry’s beauty stops consumers in their tracks and this magnetic attraction, more than anything else, brings the entrepreneur into retail sales specializing in jewelry.

Many of these new fashion jewelry businesses begin on the simplest level with retailers buying wholesale fashion jewelry and presenting it to friends and co-workers. Easy sales and new found profits ignite a fire to grow the business, but what step comes next? As a twenty-five year veteran of the wholesale fashion jewelry industry, I have seen business after business start in this way and often grow to become the major supplier of fashion accessories in a community. The learning curve never ends as fashion jewelry evolves as well as retail tactics, but some things never change and these key techniques will have positive impact on your fashion jewelry business.

But first, how are you going to sell your treasure of wholesale fashion jewelry? Outgoing personalities love the active sale. Visit businesses, do parties, set up in flea markets or craft shows, and bubble over with enthusiasm as you introduce stunning fashion jewelry to consumers. All they need is a crowd and permission to set up. Bingos, festivals, school picnics, car shows, sporting events-the list is endless. Overhead is low and actually stops when not engaged in sales activities. But so does sales, so many prefer brick and mortar businesses with a higher overhead, but continuing business even when you’re not there.

The quieter, methodical personality may not be up to this bubbling enthusiasm and choose a passive sales mode. Successful businesses often build without the entrepreneur ever engaged in active sales to the consumer. They connect with beauty shops and other locations to provide fashion jewelry on consignment with the owner profiting as well as the entrepreneur. Methodical personalities think out the details like how to handle shrinkage of missing items with no sales recorded. Increasing price and lowering consignment fees compensates for losses when fashion jewelry has open exposure that can result in more shrinkage. The flip side is reduced sales in secure environments like showcases or behind the counter, which reduce shrinkage, but unfortunately, also sales.

Okay, both personalities have a selling method they are comfortable with and both can expand their business with online marketing by working on websites while their sales support them as the websites grow, climbing higher in the results of major search engines. But what about the 5 shortcuts to retail success? They boil down to pricing, selection, presentation, knowledge, and benefits.

-First comes pricing the wholesale fashion jewelry. New entrepreneurs often feel shock waves as they see the wholesale cost compared to retail prices they paid as consumers. The first temptation is undercut all the competition. Stop there!-because fashion jewelry is cyclical and low prices generate low profits that don’t carry retailers through the tough times. Do you want to spend all your earnings on restocking wholesale fashion jewelry and covering overhead? Of course not, you want to grow your business and make a profit and pricing is important.

Retail uses a term called keystone-a nice word for doubling the wholesale price. Make keystone the minimum for mark-up in fashion jewelry and look for the items that give you room for far longer mark-ups. The upside has no rules. Let your intuition guide you because prices can always come down, but it is difficult to go up.

-Next comes selection and this is a factor that major retailers like fine department stores are always struggling to get right. Stroll through one and you will see they have reduced staff on the floor so selection often has to sell itself. The fine department stores need “no miss” choices and have resources, forecasts, statistics, and trained buyers to make these decisions. Small retailers don’t need to be discouraged because this isn’t rocket science and you are closer to the clientele in your location than any major retailer.

Making the perfect selection rests on the age and demographics of your main customer base. Add this to the fashion trends of the season and you are close to perfect. How do you keep up with all those rapid changing fashion trends? Well rapid change is a myth. Trends change very slowly-often over a decade. Yes, colors and subtle adjustments occur every season, but today we are in the midst of classic trends that started in the early 21st century and have a promising future. More on this when we cover knowledge.

-Now for presentation-making the fashion jewelry look special. Ever notice how necklaces clumped together on a tee bar on top of a showcase seem to scream “I’m on sale” while the stuff in the showcase whispers “I’m special”. That’s presentation and how it has changed even for fine department stores.

Teri Agins in The End of Fashion details how department stores that were once “the first visual contact with fashion” and “introduced merchandise concepts to customers” changed in the late 20th century to a collection of brands. Agins quotes one upscale shopper who “was appalled when she discovered $19.99 Nine West shoes displayed right next to $350 Chanels” in her favorite department store that was compromising its image of elite fashion. Make an item look special and it takes on the perception of higher value.

-Next comes knowledge that is worth more than price. Don’t believe it? Think of items you bought because the sales person impressed you with a deep understanding of the product. That was worth more than price. I personally experienced this lesson when I did a trade show with a colleague. I told my customers the fashion jewelry was a real value at the price. His sales person painted a word picture of the wholesale fashion jewelry with the season’s apparel and wrote more orders without the customers even knowing the price.

Knowledge is knowing the trends and knowing the item. Consumers trust a well-informed source and when you know what is today’s style and why it looks right on the customer, you remove the burden of choice from the buyer.

Knowledge today goes deeper because classic trends in fashion jewelry bring gemstone components, shell, Murano style glass, Millefiore, and more to jewelry designs. A story is worth volumes in explaining glass jewelry and knowledge of gemstones that removes the doubt about whether it is real. Don’t be overwhelmed about understanding the trends and knowledge of today’s components because everything is detailed in a report, Wholesale Fashion Jewelry-The Magic of Trends (find a link to the report at the foot of this article).

-Finally there are benefits. Think of benefits as vision-what the customer envisions. Anyone that buys fashion jewelry wants to make a positive statement. They want a look that is flattering and appropriate. So like the car commercial running on the radio, features describe the details like length, color, texture, and shape while benefits say “matches apparel while complementing your complexion”, “draws attention to your slender neck”, or “creates a youthful look that is so you”. The old adage of sell the sizzle, not the steak, gets to the point. Pick the right item for the customer, be sincere, and sell the sizzle.

Will all this work in a slowing economy? Absolutely! In worrisome times women appreciate an escape valve of some small new purchase. What fulfills this better than fashion jewelry? Apply the five shortcuts and lift your customers’ spirits with a feel-good experience.

Different Fashions – Alternative Fashion Styles

Clothing was always, ever since man started wrapping himself in various animal fur, a statement of a certain kind. Fashion, as a style popularized and excepted by many in modern day, just deepened that statement’s importance. Choosing one style or another gave people in all cultures a way of expressing themselves, and as there was always a fashion followed by majority of society, there was another, somewhere in the back of it, denying and rejecting it.

Alternative fashion styles are tightly close to music genres of what is also labeled as “alternative”, such as rock and roll, punk, gothic, hardcore, and all varieties that rose up from those. Many social and cultural issues are brought up by associating a subculture with a type of music and a way of clothing, such as denying status quo of classes, governmental policies, distribution of power, and identity policy which majority popularized. Identity, in fact, is the most important aspect of alternative fashion and as an embodiment of it, it produced a variety of styles, to show the same variety of opinion, discontent, or rejecting the traditional values which are always transformed in shape but steady in structure in the mainstream fashion.

Reimagining one’s own identity is a process that is followed by changes in personal appearance and usually approaching values of a subculture which offers to individual a better view of society. Those values are mirrored in music, clothes and accessories. Influenced by vintage and retro fashion, dress styles, forms of visual and performance art, personal attitudes towards concepts such as individuality, consumerism, social constructs on behavior, and considerations of availability and utilitarianism, rock and roll and punk had a very strong ground to stand on when social criticizm through clothing became unseparable part of the genres.

Since the 50s and 70s which were the turning point years, rock and roll and punk styles got multiplied by many, and brought us gothic, cyber gothic (and other varieties of gothic fashion which is still one of the strongest alternative movements in creation of new gender roles and identities and social boundaries), industrial (strongly influenced by military uniforms), Beatniks, Metal, Heavy Metal, Glam Metal (and many subgenres of metal music which has their own set of clothing styles), Hippie, Riot grrrl, Lolita, Mod, Ero kawaii (and many, many, many Japanese influenced styles with a strong influence on Western fashion, alternative and mainstream, such as Elegant Gothic Aristocrat), and many more. Individuality is an important part of alternative fashion, but there are always patterns (otherwise we would not call it a fashion), and even punk fashion, as an extreme form of rejecting social system through hairstyle, piercings, ripped clothes etc has a certain structure which can except anyone who wants to join it.

As styles change, and we are going further in time from the origins of musical genres which brought us new fashion(s), it is apparent that they are still here, regardless of gender, class, age or culture, transforming and giving people a stronger voice to say “We are different, and we want more”.