Ralph Lauren Polo Opens Chic New Store on Fifth Avenue

David Lauren and Bruce Weber. All images via Billy Farrell (BFAnyc.com)

The new Ralph Lauren Polo store opened in New York City with a solid fashion guest list, including Grace Coddington, Lauren Remington Platt, and Alessandra Ambrosio. The new store is on 711 5th Ave, New York, NY.

RALPH LAUREN POLO Grand Opening with BRUCE WEBER
Alessandra Ambrosio & Hilary Rhoda

RALPH LAUREN POLO Grand Opening with BRUCE WEBER
Grace Coddington & Bruce Weber

RALPH LAUREN POLO Grand Opening with BRUCE WEBER
Schuyler Sutton, Bridget Malcolm, & Marcy Barrett

RALPH LAUREN POLO Grand Opening with BRUCE WEBER
Henry Watkins & Corey Baptiste

RALPH LAUREN POLO Grand Opening with BRUCE WEBER
Jane Hitchcock

RALPH LAUREN POLO Grand Opening with BRUCE WEBER
Lauren Remington Platt 

 

Buy Nudes. Grace Coddington Approves.

Edward Weston’s Nude Floating (Charis), 1939

Aesthetic appreciation of the female form in unclothed repose is perhaps the most universal artistic inclination enjoyed across most of the human race–highbrow connoisseurship that also appeals to our basest desires. According to iconic American Vogue creative director Grace Coddington, “every picture starts off naked. The model is naked, the hair is undone, the set is naked–and this is the starting point of the creative process.” Coddington has curated an auction of nude images for the site Paddle8.com called “No Clothes”–and it includes some pretty amazing images by artists and photographers like Irving Penn ($26,000), Arthur Elgort ($5,000), Vik Muniz ($60,000), and Juergen Teller ($26,000).

Oh and by the way, there’s one male nude in there, shot by Bruce Weber ($13,000).

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Get Nude With Grace Coddington

Cats, nude photographs, and cats. These are a few of Vogue creative director Grace Coddington’s favorite things. Profiled in the May 3 issue of WSJ Magazine, Coddington lets us in on the Simon Says of modeling in her very first (and very nude) photoshoot :

“I think I was very naive. It didn’t occur to me that it was a weird thing to do, but I thought Norman Parkinson was an extraordinary photographer, and when he asked me to take off my clothes, it was just the same as ‘Stand up’ or ‘Sit down.’”

Coddington has curated an upcoming nude photography auction for Paddle 8 titled, transparently, “No Clothes”.

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Photography by Arthur Elgort for WSJ. Magazine

John Galliano Cancels Parsons Class, Dresses Like This

Have you heard? John Galliano’s BFA course at the Parsons The New School has been cancelled. Have you heard what else? John Galliano now masters the art of what we’re going to call "golf-grunge," according to his latest look seen on the streets of New York. Just this week, the former Dior designer was spotted on the streets with Vogue‘s Grace Coddington sporting a rather unusual look. Veering from his signature Shakespearean Pirate style, Galliano has adopted a mash-up that would make Kurt Cobain, Tiger Woods, and a dad in Wichita. Intrigued? See it all after the jump.

Galliano2

Photo via FameFlynet

New York Fashion Weekend Wrap-Up: Part One

While non-fashion folk closed up shop on Friday night to enjoy 48 hours of R&R, the rest of us geared up for two days of back-to-back presentations and runway shows by trading in our 7-inch platforms for flats. You see, dressing cute the first few days of NYFW is fun and all, but after a few rounds of subway, taxi, and – yes – pedicab sprinting to complete an impossible schedule, comfort rapidly becomes key. Sure it’s stressful, but you know what? We love it. Read on for Part One of my weekend show and party highlights, including a chat with Jessica Stam and Terry Richardson–bonus Grace Coddington sighting–after the jump.

Friday’s first stop was the Mercedes-Benz Star Lounge at Lincoln Center to catch Stam and Richardson (pictured above) as they unveiled the Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week key visual, which features the supermodel posing on top of the Concept A-Class in Giles Deacon for Emanuel Ungaro. “I was inspired by Tom Cruise in movies like Top Gun and Mission Impossible,” says Richardson of the high-fashion meets high-action shoot. “I wanted something daring, and I knew Stam had the perfect energy for it.” When I asked Stam if, like Cruise, she did her own stunts, she excitedly responded: “Yes! Always.”

image Next up was the Mandy Coon show at the Metropolitan Pavilion, which featured liquid leather, jaw-dropping jumpsuits, and one of SS12’s top hues: white. Pattern play is another standout trend of the season – and no one did it better than Suno. The brand went all out for their first-ever runway show, which featured hypercolor florals mixed with bold stripes in dresses and separates. The VPL show at Chelsea Piers fittingly promoted a swim theme as well as spring’s high-flying sportswear trend. Models glided down the runway in damp, slicked-back hair and looks that featured neoprene and cleverly gilled accents. I call it extraterrestrial surfwear. Photos: Style.com image Friday night belonged to Nicola Formichetti, as Thierry Mugler Parfums celebrated their creative director’s body of work as well as the opening of his pop-up concept store. Guests like Visionaire’s Cecilia Dean, designer Richard Chai, and Elle style director Kate Lanphear (above, right) sipped on Belvedere Vodka as Nomi Ruiz of Jessica 6 performed a series of infectious party bangers. Formichetti kept the party going with his non-stop energy on the dance floor.

image Mega shows like Alexander Wang and Charlotte Ronson featured instantly covetable accessories, like Wang’s to-die-for supersized weekender bags and killer footwear. The brand took spring’s sportswear to the next level by introducing motocross-inspired pieces, fit for his ride-or-die chick muses. (By the way, the show’s attendees were major – I couldn’t leave without snapping Vogue’s Grace Coddington in all her flame-haired glory, pictured above center.) Ronson’s Western-themed collection was just as stellar and debuted my new must-have neckpiece: the belt-buckle choker (sported by Ronson’s sister, Annabelle Dexter-Jones, above right). Photos: Style.com

image Saturday culminated with BlackBook favorite Asher Levine’s mesmerizing menswear collection. While last year’s spring show was all about transformation, this season’s theatrics foregrounded mutation. In true Levine fashion, the production was dramatic and thought-provoking. Cleverly blending accessible pieces, like utilitarian pants, with progressive elements–tentacle masks and neoprene latex enamel gauntlets–it’s no wonder that Formichetti is one of the outré designer’s top supporters. It’s inspiring to watch this young designer grow and single-handedly lead fashion to uncharted territories.

Grace Coddington Lands $1.2 Million for Her Memoirs

American Vogue creative director Grace Coddington has something to smile about. The Telegraph reports that Susan Kamil of the Random House publishing group has bought the fashion veteran’s tell-all memoir for a cool $1.2 million. The book deal has reportedly been in the works since 2010.

Given the candid moments in The September Issue and designer tidbits in her recent interview with The Economist, we’re expecting lots of seven-figure-worthy juiciness on the modeling industry, Anna, and, we hope, the designers and photographers she’s worked with for decades.

Grace Coddington on Manolo Blahnik, Karl Lagerfeld, & Fashion’s New Direction

There’s no question that Vogue creative director Grace Coddington stole the show in the 2009 documentary The September Issue. While she’d been an undeniable force in the industry for decades, the film revealed that she’s also one of the very few (if not the only) fashion insiders willing to rebel against editor Anna Wintour, which, unsurprisingly, made her a cult hero of sorts. As the fiery redhead feverishly fought for creative freedom, we wanted to know more. Lucky for us, the spring issue of The Economist‘s quarterly lifestyle magazine, Intelligent Life, features an intimate profile of Coddington by Julie Kavanagh, her assistant in the ’70s.

Highlights from the interview include her take on a somewhat comical shoot on a beach with actress Anjelica Houston and Manolo Blahnik: “It was pretty ridiculous—there’s no one more camp than Manolo. He brought his own clothes and took far more of my time discussing what he was going to wear than Anjelica did. To shut him up we buried him in the sand, with only his head and spotted handkerchief showing.” She also expresses her slight disdain for fashion’s new digital approach. On selecting editorial shoot locations: “[Photographer Norman Parkinson] taught me the art of traveling, which means never closing your eyes in case you miss something. We’d get up at five and drive round on recces to see what inspired us. The approach is so different now. Photographers don’t look out the window: they want to see a location book, and everything is done on computers.”

Kavanagh also reminisces on her travels to Paris with Coddington and how they witnessed Karl Lagerfeld transform from emerging designer into an icon. The refreshingly frank Coddington gives her own two cents on Lagerfeld’s star power: “Karl plays the celebrity game. I always make this mistake and think it must be really unpleasant for him, but he actually enjoys it—it’s very rock ‘n’ roll.”

See the rest of the revealing interview here.

Cassius Clay’s Style Picks For the Kanye in All of Us

You may already be familiar with Cassius Clay (no, not that one); he’s the 19-year-old Yale student who went from shopping in Barneys to Kanye’s style guru in a matter of days. He’s been one of the best rags-to-riches stories of 2010 (although we don’t consider a Barneys shopper to be leading a particularly destitute life) and his style is certainly refreshing for men tired of the same old look. Heavy on accessories, Clay’s look is Parisian chic with an edge to it—think Barbour jackets with gold horse brooches, Hermes scarves over studded wool sweaters, simple shoes in unexpected fabrics. He references Anna Dello Russo and Grace Coddington as some of his favorite stylists, according to an interview on Opening Ceremony’s blog.

To accompany the Q&A, Clay has chosen several of his favorite pieces from the store. Head over to one of the Opening Ceremony locations to nab the goods before Kanye cleans out the store!

Side Projects from Rachel Zoe, Madonna, & Another Voguette

Earlier this week we heard news that Vogue‘s Lauren Santo Domingo was launching an online trunk show initiative, and it looks like she’s not the only one under Anna Wintour’s helm to be branching out of late. Grace Coddington, the scarlet-haired creative director made famous thanks to The September Issue is working on a memoir. Women’s Wear Daily first broke the news, stating, “Coddington and former Men’s Vogue editor in chief Jay Fielden — whom the red-headed stylist enlisted to help write the book after being approached by agents and publishers looking to translate her September Issue fame into a bestseller — are preparing a proposal for her autobiography.” It’s not hard to imagine the fierce bidding war that’s likely to ensue: While the project is only in initial stages, the blogosphere has already reached a fever-pitch of buzz over the prospect of Coddington being canonized in print form.

Besides, “The book will cover Coddington’s early life in Wales, her modeling days in Sixties London, the car accident that changed her career path and her ascendancy through fashion’s ranks as a stylist and editor at British Vogue and, later, its American counterpart,” says WWD. So, there’s bound to be plenty of page turning salvos along the way.

Rachel Zoe and Madonna are likewise beefing up their respective resumes this season, notes Fashionologie. Zoe styled her first-ever editorial for LOVE (not to mention that a spread in Harper’s Bazaar’s September issue, in which Zoe’s signature ‘I Die’ comes true, garnered rave reviews). And, in addition to designing and playing muse to Dolce & Gabbana, Madonna is now moonlighting as director. The pop star and mogul worked with Mert Alas and Marcus Piggot on a video for Miu Miu’s latest campaign. “We were supposed to shoot a video, so Madonna said she wanted to direct it. They said she could do it but they weren’t going to pay her and she started laughing. She put on her iPod and taught us moves and we shot the video for two hours,” the celebrated photographers said of the shoot.