Karl Lagerfeld’s Avatar to Appear on Kim Kardashian’s App

Karl Lagerfeld’s image over the years has become deeply embedded in the pop culture landscape, lending his trademark white ponytail and jet black sunglasses to everything from The Simpsons to Tokidoki figurines.

In a time when fashion’s future seems uncertain, Lagerfeld’s been one of the strongest examples of a designer capitalizing on his celebrity status to keep his brands at the forefront. Therefore, his decision to appear in Kim Kardashian’s mobile game, “Kim Kardashian: Hollywood,” comes as no surprise, since submitting to the Kardashian empire has proven time after time to be an unstoppable means for success in the digital era.

Starting tomorrow, Lagerfeld’s avatar will come to life in Kardashian’s virtual world, joining a strong lineup of fashion editors who’ve also gone this route, including André Leon Talley and Anna Dello Russo. The Glu Mobile game, which currently boasts more than 30 million downloads, will feature a Karl Lagerfeld boutique fully stocked with a selection of the designer’s latest collection where players’ “aspiring celebrities” can shop and style ready-t0-wear bags and shoes.

The fashion industry is speculating a major social media boost for the Chanel Creative Director as a result of this A-list collaboration. Falling just behind @Instagram and @TaylorSwift, Kardashian’s Instagram account boasts an impressive 50.2 million followers to Lagerfeld’s much slimmer 1.7 million—a discrepancy that’s likely to reduce over the next few days.

“Kim’s contribution to beauty and fashion—and what made her such an icon—is the fact that you don’t have to be super slim and very tall to be beautiful,” Lagerfeld said to Vogue. “Others tried, but she succeeded in giving other girls like herself confidence. And I admire her for that.”


STYLE SCOOP: André Leon Talley Moves On from Numéro, James Franco Covers It

Editor-at-large no longer — André Leon Talley has departed from Numéro Russia, only one year after he decamped for the glossy, leaving the same post at Vogue. So what’s next for the fabulously caped? Perhaps putting his ideas and vision into effect at a luxury brand or two… He’ll maintain his position of artistic director at Zappos Couture.

Speaking of Numéro, James Franco covers Numéro Homme‘s latest issue, x2. The actor does his best nature enthusiast impression, gently caressing a budding branch, and in the second, cradling a rabbit. At least he doesn’t take himself too seriously?

STYLE SCOOP: Hello Kitty Does Playboy, André Leon Talley And Tom Ford Do Numéro

Well, she finally broke down. Hello Kitty did Playboy in celebration of the glossy’s 40th anniversary. The collaboration is available at Colette, and if you wanted to get us something, the mug would be a-ok. (Good morning!)


Pat Cleveland! Tom Ford! André Leon Talley! Conrad Bromfield’s muscles! It’s all in the March issue of Numéro, thanks to Mr. Talley pulling Tom Ford et al in for a rather exposed shoot. Into it.


Sandra Bernhard On Her NY Shows This Week, Happiness, & Her Legacy

Sandra Bernhard will perform tonight at Carnegie Hall at a fundraiser to raise money for music education programs for underprivileged kids. The Music of Prince show produced by Michael Dorf has Elvis Costello, D’Angelo, Talib Kwell, Bettye Lavette, Amos Lee, Devotcka, and many others performing Prince hits. The Roots are the house band. And on Saturday, Sandra will appear at the Tarrytown Music Hall in the namesake NY suburb. This is part of her national tour which will take her through the summer. Sandra was the go-to gal for me when I opened two clubs back in the day, She wowed them on New Year’s Eve a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away with an all-star cast that she assembled when the Palladium entrusted me to fill it. She also set the tone for me at Life when I first launched that fabulously famous joint. In both cases, I enjoyed the consummate professional who wowed us off and on the stage. This week, I caught up with Sandra and asked her all about it.

First of all, let’s begin where we first met. I booked you two times when I was running nightclubs. I booked you at the Palladium for New Year’s Eve, which was an amazing show. And then I booked you at the opening, or right after the opening at Life, a nightclub I ran on Bleecker street. 
You were incredible. The first one was you, and you brought along Gianni Versace, Robin Byrd,  André Leon Talley, and there was one other..
It was Donatella Versace.

And we had Debbie Harry open, or after you performed because that’s the way it works. And the Psychedelic Furs performed for the first time in 10 years, and we had PM Dawn perform at dawn. 
Oh my God. 

So it was the biggest booking I think I ever did. 
Those days are gone. And sadly, cause I miss The Palladium. It was a great club. 

So you’re playing in Tarrytown this Saturday. Is the show the exact show that you’d do in Vegas or New York, or do you tone it down a bit for the local hoi polloi ?
I might just pull it back a bit, because you’re not gonna do a New York-style show in a place that doesn’t call for it. So in the sense of bringing all my wardrobe? No, I’m not gonna do that. But, I’ll be there with my band! We’ll have a great show. Apparently, a lot of NYers have moved to Tarrytown, as with all the surrounding areas of NYC, so you’re always gonna get a good audience wherever you are.

Tonight you’re playing with Elvis Costello, who’s amazing, at The Music of Prince at Carnegie Hall. What is the music of Prince? 
It’s a fundraiser for music education and it’s like 20 different people covering Prince songs. I’m covering “Little Red Corvette” with the band The Roots. You know, Questlove, it’s his band that’s the backup band. And other people are bringing their own bands, but I’m performing with Questlove. They’re backing me up.

You’re right in the forefront of the movement for LGBT rights. Under this administration, there seems to be exponential strides. Even Dirty Harry himself, Clint Eastwood, came out for gay marriage. Are you running out of material? 
That was never my thrust, the gay movement per se. That was certainly the backdrop, because that’s just sort of where the smart, forward-thinking people have always existed, and still do to a certain extent. But my material is much more eclectic than that and always has been. I mean, I never identified myself as, you know, a “gay performer." That’s just not where I’m at. My work is about taking all the things that I thought were sophisticated and important from all the different worlds. From the art world, from the music scene, the underground scene, from vaudeville, to Broadway, to rock ‘n’ roll, to burlesque, to the Black movement. I’ve always melded my shows together. I’m postmodern, honey. I don’t get caught up in one thing. Never have. 

I booked you back in the day because you know how to make a statement. 
And that’s what I’m still doin, honey, cause there’s plenty to make statements about. Now the statement is: how complacent can our culture be? How lazy can we be? How dependent are we on social media? And the lack of people putting themselves out there, meeting new people face-to-face, being inspired, which is the real human experience! That’s what makes people great and interesting. You can’t do that by hiding behind the veils of social media. I mean, it just cuts off people’s ability to grow as people. 

You have this band called The Flawless Zircons, which I think is an amazing name. Tell me about them.

Well, some of the stuff I’ve written and some of the songs are covers. I have a huge musical repertoire that I draw from depending on the night. I switch it up. I love that element of surprise, just the way I’m sure if you talked to The Stones the night before they did a set, they wouldn’t tell you their set-list  Nobody wants to hear ahead of time what they’re gonna be hearing, you know what I mean? And the name – I love to “wow” you with "the big rock" and it turns out to be diamond-wannabee Zirconia. It just makes me laugh.

You do so many things in your career, but what would you like to be remembered as? What is Sandra Bernhard’s legacy? 
As somebody who constantly breaks down the walls of complacency. I love being somebody who can command attention on stage. Who demands attention. Who earns attention. Is somebody who not only entertains you, but makes you walk away at the end of the night and think, “wow, here’s somebody who shares my emotions, my fears, my hopes." There’s a wave that carries us through life, and throws us on to lots of different shores of interesting, exciting, ongoing, inspiring circumstances. But life should always be inspiring. It shouldn’t suddenly drop off the cliff and not be fun anymore, no matter where we’re at culturally or environmentally. We still gotta find ways of making life inspiring. 

How far is the real Sandra Bernhard from the stage Sandra Bernhard? Are you always on? Is it always you? 
No, not at all. I think I can drop into entertaining mode at the drop of a hat. But day-to-day, it’s work! You gotta roll up your sleeves, deal with so many different elements of this business. I’m on both sides of the live-performing and the creative side, and I’m also on the acting side. You can’t just throw it into somebody else’s lap because it’ll just fall apart. At different junctures, I’ve been with the wrong people, and you just gotta wrestle back control of your career, and be collaborative with people. 

Are you happy, or happier?
I’ve always enjoyed my life. As an artist and creative person, you’re always struggling to find level footing because you see things other people don’t see. If you didn’t see them, you would have nothing to talk about. You may lift up corners of rugs that are filthy, and no one wants to look at the filth, but if you don’t look at the filth then you’ve got nothing to talk about. So, when you look at things that are a little shocking or a little scary, they affect you emotionally and physically. That’s what artists do – painters, sculptors, writers, singers, funny people –  we look at things that other people aren’t willing to look at, and then talk about it in a funny or interesting creative way. 
So what’s the future? What comes next? 
Right now, a friend of mine is developing a great television series idea for me and another actress I don’t want to talk about because we’re right in the planning stages. We’re setting up meetings to go out and pitch the idea, and there’s nothing more irritating than when things are in transition. You just gotta let them fall together. But it’s a great idea with another fabulous, highly-visible actress who needs to be seen again, so it’s the two of us. I feel very positive about it, and that’s my next thing that I really wanna get done. 
I remember when you came in for sound check at Palladium, I hadn’t yet met you, and people were saying, " Oh my God, she’s gonna eat you up, and don’t do this…and that…" Then we heard you walk in, and from then on, you were just a joy. You were a joy to work with. So professional.
Thank you, and that’s what you gotta be. I mean, there’s no excuse for being anything less, and there’s no reason not to be. If you’re not professional, you don’t get anything done. You know that, and I know that. And thank you for that gig! It was a great, great night. That was the most fun night. 
Transcribed by BlackBook’s superstar intern Nicole Pinhas. 

If You’ve Ever Wanted to Bite a Designer’s Head Off, Here’s a Cake-Pop

Just in time for fashion week, London-based bakery Molly Bakes has revealed a set of cake-pops that feature the faces of all your favorite fashion designers and influencers. Pictured are pops inspired by Andre Leon Talley, Karl Lagerfeld and Anna Wintour, and they also carry cakes with the faces of Donatella Versace, Victoria Beckham and Vivienne Westwood (really). 

If you find yourself in London, you can pick up the cakes at Selfridges. The company’s online shop doesn’t carry these guys, but you can special order them here.

Andre Leon Talley Out At ‘Vogue’?

Don’t scare us like this, Page Six: the gossip rag reports that Andre Leon Talley, longtime flamboyant old kook at Vogue, is parting ways over his TV ambitions.  


Sources are saying the editor-at-large’s 30+ year relationship with Vogue could come to an end because they don’t want to be associated with the late-night talk show that Talley is developing. The talk show is being developed by former NBC executive Ben Silverman and will combine the usual chat format with fashion. 

Talley has represented Vogue on television in the past: he’s appeared as a judge on America’s Next Top Model, reported on Entertainment Tonight, and the Sex & The City film, plus numerous other TV gigs. But something about his late night talk show plans — perhaps because it won’t be exculsively Vogue focused? — are chafing with the fashion mag.   

Maybe this won’t be the worst news in the world: an Andre Leon Talley talk show will probably be a thing of wonder. But only if Grace Coddington is his side man. 

Contact the author of this post at Jessica.Wakeman@Gmail.com. Follow me on Twitter.

Hanneli Mustaparta Is Kind of a Big Deal Now

What a difference a year makes. Since we first named Hanneli Mustaparta “The New Sartorialist,” the former model has become a top street-style photographer and quite the media darling. She’s developed a sharp eye behind the camera, but is also a style icon in her own right, thanks to photobloggers like Tommy Ton capturing her high-fashion-meets-high-street looks in action. And there’s no question that Mustaparta’s career reached new heights when she was tapped by Vogue and CBS to co-host a live webcast of Fashion’s Night Out: The Show, the kick-off event for Fashion’s Night Out—and the largest public fashion show in New York City history. Streamed on CBS.com, she hosted the designer and celebrity arrivals with none other than Vogue Editor-at-Large André Leon Talley, and interviewed the likes of Vera Wang, Donna Karan, and Blake Lively. Landing a role amongst such fashion heavy-hitters seems like a natural progression for the Norwegian transplant, especially now that she’s established a solid American fan base on top of her existing international audience.

And although her face has been immortalized on a Zara t-shirt (see the original image here), perhaps that designer collaboration I suggested will come in 2011. But whatever Mustaparta’s next big move is, we’ll be watching.

Clockwise from left: Artwork by Danny Roberts; Hanneli with Carine Roitfeld; Hanneli with her vintage Nikon camera; T-shirt by Zara; Hanneli with André Leon Talley and Blake Lively; Hanneli in BlackBook Dec/Jan 2010.

Links: Whoopi Pees Her Pants; Spidey Loses His Job

● Whoopi Goldberg brings it today: watch her in eight ads about peeing her pants and then read about her hanging with Andre Leon Talley. [Videogum, NYTimes] ● The follow up to Pride & Prejudice & Zombies, Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter gets a book trailer. [Daily What] ● Instead of putting together a new show about a funny, wacky, single chick, NBC gets lazy, considers turning Bridget Jones into a TV show. [Perez]

● Always on the pulse of contemporary culture, Spider-Man loses his job. [NY Times] ● Minimalist Stephen King posters. [Flickr] ● If you were curious, what 80,000 tablets of ecstasy look like. [Animal]

The Death of Sky-High Heels

image“Meredith Melling Burke … walked in off the elevator in a beige 3.1 Phillip Lim chesterfield and beige trousers tucked into an impeccable black pair from Miu Miu — that were completely flat! A sign of things to come?” Andre Leon Talley wrote in a recent blog post for Vogue. Blame it on Michelle Obama (who never seems to rise above a kitten heel) or fashion designer Maria Cornejo, who famously outfitted her models in flats-only this past Fashion Week, but the sky-high heel that garnered so much attention on SS09 runways may be being thrown out the window, or at least temporarily laid to rest.

According to Fashionologie, “Carine Roitfeld, notorious for her pro-heel stance, was snapped recently at a luncheon in Cannes wearing flats; Francisco Costa shod all of his Cruise 2010 models in brogues and flat boots, and Vogue’s Mark Holgate noted at yesterday’s Cruise 2010 Yves Saint Laurent presentation that even ‘the house that started the platform craze is coming down off them’.” In other words, it’s time to break out your most comfortable shoes and leave the pain-inducing sky-high pairs behind. If the trend towards flatter footwear turns out to be true, I can’t imagine many people (save for the Christian Louboutins and Manolo Blahniks of the world) complaining.