The 12 Instagrams of Christmas: The Fashion World Gets Festive

The holidays are for festive celebrations, the Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show (obviously), and enviable accessories (whether you give them or get them for yourself is up to you). Check out what’s new this week!

A photo posted by Eva Chen (@evachen212) on

That ring! Gabriela Artigas, we swoon.

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Holiday makeup, not for the weak.

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!!!

2014: Year of the Power Combo.

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Looks a lot like Solange’s wedding…

A photo posted by Vogue (@voguemagazine) on

Royals in NYC!

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How to get zesty with an otherwise all-black winter wardrobe.

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In case you managed to avoid Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, the Internet, and all of humanity on Tuesday.

A photo posted by Jane Aldridge (@seaofshoes) on

Young Jane Aldridge as Coco Chanel — adorable.

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Another month, another bitchin’ Balmain ad.

Enviable baubles.

Not even surprised anymore.

Princess Kate Wore A Princess Coat, Inadvertently Showed Some Leg

Kate Middleton wore a double breasted red number from Catherine Walker, borrowing a diamond fern brooch from the Queen — the national symbol of New Zealand, where she landed. This (in my opinion) is the best we’ve ever seen Kate look, and still true to style. The wind worked against the Queen’s wishes for longer hemlines, though. Everyone gets a Marilyn moment.

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Kate Middleton’s Cousin Katrina Darling on Her ‘Playboy’ Debut & Burlesque Tonight

So the summer is over according to everybody except my really smart smartphone which swears I have another couple of weeks till fall. To add to the confusion, Fashion Week is upon us and it’s celebrating spring 2013. Tonight, down at Demi Monde, Katrina Darling – the second cousin of Kate Middleton – will perform her burlesque routine. Darling will join my favorite double entendre DJ Miss Guy and the princely but not really truly royalty DJ Prince Terrence for a soiree. The event is to celebrate her cover of Playboy, although "Playboy is not a sponsor of this event.”  I’m completely confused but feel comfy as the always enlightening Lyle Derek, Patrick Duffy, and Kimyon Huggins will surely fill in my blanks. Katrina was a burlesque queen before she fell into this Middleton muddle and is enjoying the luck.

Burlesque troupe Lady Circus will also provide some flesh for fantasy. Now the whole shebang will take place down at the aptly-addressed 90 "Broad" Street. There is also a celebration of Elle Macpherson’s new lingerie line "Intimates" and rock goddess Theo Kagin’s new makeup line “Armour Beauty.”

I caught up with Katrina Darling and asked her all about it

So you are coming back to the USA for a show at Demi Monde… what did you learn from your previous NYC burlesque experience, and how will it affect this performance?
With every performance, the venues and the audiences are different, so I’m always adapting and tweaking things to fit. I know that this time around the audience will be at a safer distance as I’m using fire in my performance.

Did you get to meet NYC’s burlesque queens?
Not whilst in New York, however the guys from The Slipper Room did two shows in Edinburgh and Glasgow a couple of years back, and I saw Julie Atlas Muze, Ms. Tickle, and many more. They’re two of my favorite performers; I’m more into the bawdy, provocative, modern burlesque than the mainstream stuff.

This cousin Kate thing… is it her problem, your problem, or anybody’s problem. Has anyone "talked" to you?
I don’t think it’s anybody’s problem! I’m a distant relative. I’ve been performing since I was 18. I’m not going to stop expressing myself through my art because some British journo showed up on my parent’s doorstep and decided to “out” me because I did  a “God Save the Queen” act (I’m not the first girl to do a royalty-themed act). You deal the hand life throws at you and mine seems to be unfolding with some happy coincidences. That’s all. Katrina Darling

What attracted you to this ancient art form, and where do you want to take it? With your new notoriety, has it become your entire world?
Well, as a child I was a show-off, and as a teen I dispelled my angst by performing in music bands. But as a young adult I stumbled across burlesque and toyed with my sexuality. I grew up in a small town and come from humble means; the gift of being able to express myself was a form of escapism for me. Being able to create a fantasy world is what I’ve been doing since I’ve had an imagination. I prefer a modern take on burlesque; for me, if the art form is to last it needs to evolve past nostalgia and into the present. As an entertainer, I love to parody the present pop culture and explore new skill sets. Ten minutes on stage isn’t too long, so you gotta make them remember it. As for the future, I still don’t know what I want to be when I grow up.

Playboycalled, and you said yes. Why did you do it? Was the money the primary factor or does it define you as your own person and, of course, drive your brand?
I’ve spent a lot of time admiring beautiful women and great minds. For me, it’s a privilege to be accepted into an institution and be a part of that history, alongside beautiful women and great minds. I had an amazing time working with everyone on set shooting the cover spread, and I’m proud of what was created.

What have you gained and what have you lost?
Reaffirmation that I am always going to be very decidedly myself, my mind, and my hair.

Your act includes “God Save the Queen.” Tell me about what you are saying with this royal reference.
When I created this act I was hanging out with a lot of the older punks in my area. They were pretty split on their ideals, but when discussing monarchy I was pretty much on the fence, listening to both sides of the argument. I guess, in my naivety, I thought the problem was I couldn’t relate since I came from such a different world. Which then led to me parodying this in my act. 

Speaking of queens, you have large – how shall I put it? – broad appeal in the gay community. Tell me about that.
Well, someone asked me the other day if I thought it was weird for me to go on stage with my tittles out, having men gawk. I said "it’s not just straight men that come to shows; it’s straight women, lesbians, gays, trans, queens, blacks, white, Asians, Indians, young, old, rich, and those who don’t have two £1’s to rub together." And I’m humbled by everyone who takes time out of their life to watch me perform.

Your gigs are timed with NYC Fashion Week. Will you attend some shows? What appeals to you?
I am very excited for Fashion Week and I’m scheduling in as much as I can, including Marc Jacobs and The Blonds. However, as this is my first Fashion Week, I am more than open to show suggestions. I just want to absorb it and have a great time!

If Kate called you on the cell.. what would you say to her?
"Fancy a cuppa?" – tea, that is.

Katrina Darling

Karl Lagerfeld Has Been Immortalized in Wax

Now that Prince William and Kate Middleton have their own wax figures at Madame Tussauds, it only makes sense for fashion’s royalty, Kaiser Karl, to get the glorified treatment, too. But being the rebel that he is, the Chanel creative director swapped Hollywood-favored Tussauds for history-focused Panoptikum Hamburg—Germany’s oldest waxwork museum. And has some very interesting neighbors.

According to the Telegraph, the Hamburg-born Lagerfeld is "sandwiched between Pope Benedict XVI and the legendary large busted German prostitute Domenica," making this, with the inclusion of Karl, the most brilliantly odd wax trio to date.

As for the impressive rendering produced by renowned sculptor Saskia Ruth, Wax Lagerfeld looks scary-identical to Real Lagerfeld, so much so that one blog has already created a "Spot the Karl Lagerfeld Waxwork" game (see below)—and it’s pretty damn tricky! 

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Photos: Telegraph, My Daily

4 Kate Middleton Dresses Honored at Madame Tussauds

We’ve known that Kate Middleton was poised to become a fashion icon for quite some time. After single-handedly reviving the fascinator hat, the Duchess of Cambridge has also made another style statement popular again: youthful conservatism. Middleton’s polished fashion sense—and the designs that got her there— can now live on forever, thanks to Madame Tussauds. 

As reported by the Telegraph, the Issa blue wrap dress that Middleton wore for her engagement announcement, the Temperley black lace gown that she wore to the War Horse premiere, an Alexander McQueen dress, and a Jenny Packham number will all deck out Middleton’s (creepy-accurate) wax figures in London. 
 
Oh, and Prince Williams gets a wax figure, too.
 
 

Princess Diana’s Phenomenal Legs

Jacques Azagury met Princess Diana in 1987, dressing her for events and elegant evenings out before her death in 1997. He’s part of the reason Kate Middleton has such big shoes to fill. Azagury had a role in dressing Naomi Watts as she played the princess in Diana the movie, as well, which opens in New York on November 1 (the Red Carpet premiere is on October 30). He regularly makes his pret-a-couture for clients from Dame Helen Mirren to Brit model Kelly Brook in Knightsbridge, London, and graciously took time away from fittings to speak with me about Diana’s style, her best-dressed moment, and her killer legs.

 

What was Diana’s personal style like when you met? What sort of things did she gravitate toward?

I’m kind of known as the designer that changed Diana’s look to sort of a more of an international, streamlined look; I took her away from all the frills and flounces that she was wearing. That was the direction she wanted to go anyway. She was traveling much more in those days and she was seeing what things were looking like in Paris and Milan and New York. She had a very good fashion eye. She still wanted to be in fashion.

 

Were there things she chose to wear in order to send a certain message?

She always came to me for a specific event. She always had something in mind. For instance the Red Cross ball in Washington. We made her a long red dress. She knew it was going to be a serious party, so it wasn’t too decorative. She knew that after the speeches it would turn into a party, so we made a very deep V on the back. Everything was designed specifically around an event, whether it would be the color or whether it would be the style.

 

When she separated from Prince Charles, did her look change? Did she become more daring?

I think she always had a slightly daring side to her anyway, but royal protocol held her back. As soon as she was divorced she had a blank page to do whatever she wanted to do. But even then, sometimes she would want to go slightly too short on her skirt and I would advise her along with her minders that maybe three or four inches above the knee is high enough, you know? [Azagury laughs.]

 

I mean, she looked great.

Yeah, exactly. She was working out a lot throughout that period. She had a great body. Her legs were phenomenal. She was very toned. She was a young woman, she wanted to look great, feel great, and she brought that out through her dresses.

 

I know she came to you for specific events. But what was her signature when dressing?

It was pretty much… I mean… she ended up going for my signature look. It’s very female forming. It’s sexy without being too vulgar. Always a beautiful cut. Great fabric. And just simplicity really. She was the main event, the dress was secondary. But each one complemented each other.

 

Of all the times you dressed her, when did you think she looked her best?

Probably the little blue dress that she wore for the Royal Ballet, for Swan Lake. The color was so great on her. It was a great summer’s night. She was tanned. The blue was the color of her eyes. It was just a really young, sort of… I mean it looked like a little shift, but in fact it had did have this heavy, constructed, inside. It had a bodice. It was deceptively simple, let’s put it that way.

 

As all the best fashion isCan you tell me about your role in the film? How did that come about?

After I read the script, and I knew Naomi [Watts] was going to be doing it, I agreed to do it. I only replicated two dresses exactly, from the same fabric as Diana’s. And we did one dress in a different color. The others were just dresses I’ve made that were sort of “Dian-esque”. I didn’t want to make a costume drama look, I just wanted to give a hint of Diana and then some new dresses.

 

For women hoping to channel Princess Diana’s style, what advice would you have?

Well the thing is we’re 16 years on now from when Diana was wearing those dresses. They are so classic, and one could possibly wear the same dresses. But I’d say to pick up on what suits the person, and stay with not too much fuss. Concentrate on the cut. Look at your body.

Kate Middleton Almost Made Issa Go Bankrupt

As I said back in 2010, the world will never stop caring about what Kate Middleton wears. From fascinators to bikinis to repeat outfits, everyone has an opinion about what she dons and everyone—especially UK folks—want to channel her looks in hopes of landing their very own royal husband. Her most memorable, mimic-worthy moment was when she emerged in that blue Issa London dress during her royal engagement announcement. The British brand received so many requests for the design that it nearly broke the company down.

Issa chairwoman (and high-profile style star in her own right) Camilla Al Fayed tells Vogue UK: "It absolutely sky-rocketed the brand on a global scale, but it was too much […] Demand was so huge the business couldn’t cope." She goes on to explain that the brand was "basically run by interns, students and [the designer]" and that there was no business model. 

Despite the bankrupt scare, Issa has plans to open its first standalone store in Japan this week.

Women Having Their Noses Carved Into Copies of Kate Middleton’s

Have you ever taken a picture of a celebrity to the person who cuts your hair and said, "Here, make me look like this," only to end up having a haircut that looks nothing like that famous person? It’s embarrassing. Don’t do that sort of thing. Additionally, don’t go to your plastic surgeon (like, as if you "have" one on retainer or something) and said, "Here, make me look like this." That is weird! You are perfect the way you are! But apparently that sort of thing goes on, and the biggest trend in plastic surgery is getting a nose like Kate Middleton.

According to the New York Daily News, women in Long Island are desperate for noses like princesses.

“I love the shape and size of Kate Middleton’s nose and just knew I had to have it,” says Brianna Diaz, 26, an office manager from Long Island. Diaz is scheduled for her royal rhinoplasty in two weeks.

“I saw her nose a little while ago and now it is a huge thing for me, like an obsession and I just want to get it done,” she says.

Two years ago, Jessica Blaier, a 22-year-old NYU student, was flipping through People magazine in search of a new sniffer when she came across wedding pictures of the Duchess of Cambridge.

“When I saw Kate’s nose, I just knew it was the perfect nose for me,” says the premed student. “Other celebrities had parts of their noses that I wanted, but Kate’s nose had it all. The bridge swoops. The tip doesn’t fall when she smiles. And it’s feminine.”

So she ripped out two pictures of the Duchess, a head-on shot and a profile, and took it to Dr. Thomas Romo, director of facial plastic surgery at Lenox Hill Hospital on the upper East Side, who knew just what she wanted.

“She wanted a nice, natural-looking nose that complemented her face,” says Dr. Romo, who estimates he’s already performed 100 of the $10,000-$12,000 procedures. A year later, Blaier walked out of Dr. Romo’s office with a nose fit for a queen.

I don’t even know if I have a joke about this! This is a weird phenomenon. Although I do admit that I’d like someone to give me Channing Tatum’s arms. Maybe not on my body, because they would look funny, but just, you know, to hang out with. That’d be cool. But only if the rest of him was attached.

Follow Tyler Coates on Twitter.

Vivienne Westwood Wants Kate Middleton to Repeat Outfits More Often

Although the 31-year-old Duchess of Cambridge is no stranger to wearing the same thing twice (she’s been spotted repeating dresses from Amanda Wakeley, Reiss and Emilia Wickstead on multiple occasions), Dame Vivienne Westwood thinks she’s still not recycling fashion enough. The legendary British designer known for her ethical fashion focus called out Kate Middleton during her fall/winter 2013 show at London Fashion Week. She explains to the Daily Mail that she should wear outfits "over and again because that’s very good for the environment and it would send out a very nice message."

Westwood adds: "If you’re going to all that trouble to get an outfit that suits you, then you should keep on wearing it. I mean you don’t have to have a red outfit one day and then something almost the same in blue the next." 

You asked for it, Kate. If you’re going to be royal, be royal. But if you’re going to be known as a thrifty princess, then really go there and always repeat outfits, shop vintage and maybe even take up a sewing class to start making your own threads. To track Middleton’s journey to sartorially pleasing all, add What Kate Wore—a shockingly comprehensive guide to every one of her outfits—to your reader.