Thursday, October 05, 2017

FASHIONABLE INVITE: Gilt City Warehouse Sale

Gilt Sample Sale in Chicago

WHO: Gilt City
WHAT: Warehouse Sale
WHERE: Museum of Contemporary Art Warehouse, 1747 West Hubbard Street, Chicago, IL 60622
WHEN: Friday, October 6, 2017
• Friday Night First Access Session: 7pm-9pm, $25
• Friday Night Late Entrance: 9pm-11pm, $20

Saturday, May 20, 2017
• Saturday Morning Session: 9am-11am, $10
• Saturday Early Afternoon Session: 11am-1pm, $10
• Saturday Late Afternoon Session: 1pm-3pm, $5
• Saturday Early Evening Session: 3pm-5pm, $5

WHY: The Gilt sale is back with a makeover. Along with up to 80 percent off retail prices of designer fashion you will also be offered onsite styling, makeup touchups, luxurious pop-ups, complimentary monogramming and more.

Tickets are now available at giltcity.com/Chicago

Monday, July 24, 2017

FASHIONABLE INVITES: Kiehl's LifeRide

Kiel's Life Ride 2017
WHO: KIEHL’S Hosted by Executive Chef Dan Snowden of Bad Hunter

Also Chris Salgardo, President, Kiehl’s USA and Kevin Robert Frost, CEO, amfAR will lead this year’s riders:

• Ian Bohen, actor, Teen Wolf
• JR Bourne, actor, Somewhere Between
• Anthony Carrino, co-host, Kitchen Cousins
• Gilles Marini, actor, Switched at Birth
• Grant Reynolds, host/producer, What Could Possibly Go Wrong?
• Luke Wessman, tattoo artist, Miami/NY Ink
• Tyler Posey, actor, Teen Wolf

WHAT: Chicagoland celebration of the eighth annual Kiehl’s LifeRide for amfAR, an eight-day, multi-state charitable motorcycle ride from Minneapolis to Nashville that raises funds and awareness for amfAR, The Foundation for AIDS Research. Rallying with the public at nine store stops along the route, Kiehl’s will donate a total of $100,000 over the course of the ride.

Guests will enjoy seasonal light bites served up by Executive Chef Dan Snowden of West Loop hot spot, Bad Hunter, and can channel their inner biker and get a LifeRide inspired temporary tattoo from a local artist.

WHERE:
Kiehl’s Since 1851
The Shops at North Bridge
520 N. Michigan Ave.
Chicago, IL 60611

WHEN: Thursday, August 3, 2017, 11:00 AM to 12:00 PM

WHY: Cos it's all for a good cause (and you will have fun)!

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

FASHIONABLE INVITES: Nordstrom Anniversary Sale

Nordstrom Anniversary Sale 2017
WHO: Nordstrom
WHAT: Yearly Anniversary Sale, it's your chance to get new fall merchandise on sale. Many fashion and beauty brands are included like FRAME Denim, Alice & Olivia, Veronica Beard, Stuart Weitzman, Diptyque, Rodin and Charlotte Tilbury.
WHERE: Nordstrom, 55 E Grand Avenue
WHEN: July 21-Aug 6
WHY: Cos it’s never too early to start planning your fall wardrobe!


Some of my favorite pieces...
Nordstrom Anniversary Sale 2017 favorite selects
Rodin Olio Lusso Face Oil & Crema set $120
Gas Bijoux Buzios Feather Earrings, Anniversary Sale Price $119.90, After Sale $180

Alice + Olivia jacket Anniversary sale price $321.90, After Sale $485
Topshop Coat, Anniversary Sale Price $109.90, After Sale $180
Cirstabelle Earrings, Anniversary Sale price $44.90, After Sale $68
Diptyque Candle Set, Anniversary Sale Price $55, Value $75

Monday, July 17, 2017

BEAUTY CONFESSIONS: Christina Mace-Turner, CEO of True Botanicals

As a leader within some of the most innovative companies in the world, first Apple and then Flipboard, Christina has a career-long habit of leveraging technology to transform consumer experiences. After becoming a serious user of True Botanicals and fan of their philosophy, the idea of giving the beauty industry a complete tech make-over took shape — and she knew this was the brand to do it. Christina soon joined the team to take their direct sales model to the next level, delivering unprecedented transparency, greater value, and superior results to their growing clientele, while also highlighting and rewarding the sustainable farmers who provide the ingredients for True Botanicals products. Knowing that she is creating meaningful change within an industry that was so desperately in need of it makes this latest chapter in her career incredibly rewarding.

WHAT’S YOUR BEAUTY ADDICTION?
I go crazy if I am separated from our Renew Mist for more than a day. I'm obsessed with the smell - so relaxing - and the way it makes my skin feel. I have travel sized versions of it in every bag and I keep a bottle of it on my desk for quick pick me ups. When my teenage kids start to get really irritated with me, I spray it on their faces to calm them down!

WHAT’S THE BEST PART OF YOUR JOB?
I get to go to work every day with people I adore and admire, and focus on a mission that means so much to each of us. We are dedicated to empowering our customers and changing the beauty industry for the better; while it's hard work, it's incredibly gratifying.

FAVORITE VACATION DESTINATION?
Hydra, Greece. I've been going there since I was a child, and it hasn't changed a bit. Donkey's, clear water and the most beautiful sunsets I have ever seen.

WHAT INSPIRES YOU?
My daughters. I learn so much from them!

LAST FILM YOU WATCHED?
"At the Fork" which is a documentary about meat production in the United States. Doesn't sound very entertaining, but it actually is so interesting!

YOUR CELEBRITY CRUSH GROWING UP?
Ricky Schroder was my 12 year old celebrity crush. I loved "Silver Spoons" and went with a group of friends to the mall to stand on line for hours to get his autograph. When I finally got to the front of the line, I asked for a kiss, of course.

CURRENTLY OBSESSED WITH?
Inez & Vinoodh and how they manage to turn every portrait they take into a work of art.

SUM YOURSELF UP IN THREE WORDS...
Driven. Excited. Alive.

WHAT'S THE ONE THING IN YOUR MAKE-UP BAG YOU COULDN'T LIVE WITHOUT?
True Botanicals eye & lip balm.

DRINK OF CHOICE?
Dirty Tito's martini. It's my go to.

LAST TIME YOU WERE STARSTRUCK?
A dinner with Tom Wolfe years ago. I only really get starstruck with great authors.

LAST TIME YOU WERE LATE?
Ummm, is that a rhetorical question?

True Botanicals is available at truebotanicals.com and Barneys New York.

Thursday, July 06, 2017

Was British Vogue Fashion Director, Lucinda Chambers, fired?

It's come to light that former British Vogue Fashion Director, Lucinda Chambers, didn't step down as originally reported but in fact was fired. In a very candid interview with Vestoj, Lucinda reveals all including her criticisms of the fashion bible. After being taken down the day, it was published the explosive and controversial interview is back up.  “Due to the sensitive nature of this article, we took the decision to temporarily remove it from the site,” Vestoj said in a statement.

Some in the industry have praised Lucinda for her frankness while others think it's more about bitterness. Will the current shake-up at the magazine be seen as a positive move, giving others a chance to work at this prestige magazine or is it an unfair treatment of your employees? Maybe a little of both?
What do you think?


You can read here Lucinda's interview with Vestoj and decide for yourself.

WILL I GET A TICKET?
A Conversation About Life After Vogue With Lucinda Chambers

by Anja Aronowsky Kronberg

EDITOR’S NOTE: Following the original publication of this article, we’ve been contacted by lawyers on behalf of Conde Nast Limited and Edward Enninful OBE and have been requested to amend the interview. This request has now been granted.WE MEET AT A cosy private club in West London, the sort of hangout popular with fashion professionals who believe in the semblance of bohemia. For thirty-six years she’s been working at British Vogue, twenty-five of those as the magazine’s fashion director, but not long before we meet the fashion press has been full of headlines announcing her departure. We order lattes, and I’m struck by how candid she is.

A month and a half ago I was fired from Vogue. I phoned my lawyer; she asked me what I wanted to do about it. I told her I wanted to write a letter to my colleagues to tell them that Edward [Enninful] decided to let me go. And to say how proud I am to have worked at Vogue. for as long as I did, to thank them for being such brilliant colleagues. My lawyer said sure, but don’t tell HR. They wouldn’t have wanted me to send it.

Later I was having lunch with an old friend who had just been fired from Sotheby’s. She said to me, ‘Lucinda, will you please stop telling people that you’ve been fired.’ I asked her why – it’s nothing I’m ashamed of. She told me, ‘If you keep talking about it, then that becomes the story. The story should be that you’ve had the most incredible career for over thirty years. The story shouldn’t be that you’ve been fired. Don’t muck up the story.’ But I don’t want to be that person. I don’t want to be the person who puts on a brave face and tells everyone, ‘Oh, I decided to leave the company,’ when everyone knows you were really fired. There’s too much smoke and mirrors in the industry as it is. And anyway, I didn’t leave. I was fired.

Fashion can chew you up and spit you out. I worked with a brilliant designer when I was at Marni – Paulo Melim Andersson. I adored him. He was challenging, but highly intelligent. Fragile, like a lot of creative people. We had our ups and downs, but he stayed with us for seven years. Then Chloé came along. The CEO at the time asked my advice about Paulo and I told him, ‘Paulo is great, but you have to know that he won’t turn the brand around for you in a season or even two. You’ve got to give him time, and surround him by the right people.’ ‘Absolutely, absolutely,’ he said. ‘I’ll do that.’ Three seasons later Paulo was out. They didn’t give him time, and he never got his people. I felt so sad for Paulo. If you want good results, you have to support people. You don’t get the best out of anyone by making them feel insecure or nervous. Ultimately, that way of treating people is only about control. If you make someone feel nervous, you’ve got them. But in my view, you’ve got them in the wrong way. You’ve got them in a state of anxiety. I’m thinking of one fashion editor in particular: it’s his modus operandi. He will wrong-foot you and wrong-foot you, and have everyone going, ‘Shit, shit, shit, shit, shit.’

You’re not allowed to fail in fashion – especially in this age of social media, when everything is about leading a successful, amazing life. Nobody today is allowed to fail, instead the prospect causes anxiety and terror. But why can’t we celebrate failure? After all, it helps us grow and develop. I’m not ashamed of what happened to me. If my shoots were really crappy… Oh I know they weren’t all good – some were crappy. The June cover with Alexa Chung in a stupid Michael Kors T-shirt is crap. He’s a big advertiser so I knew why I had to do it. I knew it was cheesy when I was doing it, and I did it anyway. Ok, whatever. But there were others… There were others that were great.

In fashion people take you on your own estimation of yourself – that’s just a given. You can walk into a room feeling pumped up and confident, and if you radiate that the industry will believe in what you project. If, on the other hand, you appear vulnerable you won’t be seen as a winner. I remember a long time ago, when I was on maternity leave, Vogue employed a new fashion editor. When I met with my editor after having had my baby, she told me about her. She said, ‘Oh Lucinda, I’ve employed someone and she looked fantastic. She was wearing a red velvet dress and a pair of Wellington boots to the interview.’ This was twenty years ago. She went on, ‘She’s never done a shoot before. But she’s absolutely beautiful and so confident. I just fell in love with the way she looked.’ And I went, ‘Ok, ok. Let’s give her a go.’ She was a terrible stylist. Just terrible. But in fashion you can go far if you look fantastic and confident – no one wants to be the one to say ‘… but they’re crap.’ Honestly Anja, you can go quite far just with that. Fashion is full of anxious people. No one wants to be the one missing out.

Fashion moves like a shoal of fish; it’s cyclical and reactionary. Nobody can stay relevant for a lifetime – you always have peaks and troughs. The problem is that people are greedy. They think, ‘It worked then, we’ve got to make it work now.’ But fashion is an alchemy: it’s the right person at the right company at the right time. Creativity is a really hard thing to quantify and harness. The rise of the high street has put new expectations on big companies like LVMH. Businessmen are trying to get their creatives to behave in a businesslike way; everyone wants more and more, faster and faster. Big companies demand so much more from their designers – we’ve seen the casualties. It’s really hard. Those designers are going to have drink problems, they’re going to have drug problems. They’re going to have nervous breakdowns. It’s too much to ask a designer to do eight, or in some cases sixteen, collections a year. The designers do it, but they do it badly – and then they’re out. They fail in a very public way. How do you then get the confidence to say I will go back in and do it again?

The most authentic company I ever worked for is Marni. We didn’t advertise, and what we showed on the catwalk we always produced. We never wanted to be ‘in fashion.’ If you bought a skirt twenty years ago, you can still wear it today. We never changed the goalposts. Our shows were about empowering women. We always treated our models beautifully and had incredible diversity in the company: my team was half boys, half girls, all different nationalities. It was very transparent, but when the company was sold everything changed. The Castiglionis were naïve. They sold sixty percent of the company, thinking that the new owner would respect what they had built. I never understood why they sold it to Renzo Rosso of all people. He is the antithesis of everything Marni stood for. The antithesis. When Consuelo left, I remember thinking why not give the design task to someone from the team? It would have been a reflection of how fashion is created today, and it worked for Gucci – Alessandro Michele had been at the brand forever before becoming the creative director. I talked to Renzo and he agreed, but then at the last minute he changed his mind. He brought Francesco Risso onboard, who had nothing to do with the company. Before Marni, he did celebrity dressing at Prada. He’d never done a show, he’d never run a team. But he knows Anna Wintour. And who is Renzo Rosso enthralled by? Anna Wintour. The last womenswear collection at Marni was a disaster; it had terrible reviews. The show was appalling. I heard the cost to produce it was two-and-a-half times what we used to spend, and it sold fifty percent less. A lot of American buyers didn’t even bother to turn up. Marni is no more. It saddens me, but then I remind myself that from the ashes something new can emerge.

When Vetements came on the scene, what they were doing felt very new. At that particular time, it wasn’t what anyone else was doing. And when I saw the last Balenciaga show… Okay, you could say it’s a bit Margiela or a bit this or that, but honestly I was really really really excited. You know what was smart about it? It was the scale – you saw this tiny model emerge and it took forever for her to get close to the audience. It built up expectation. Everything was thought through: the casting, the music, the space. Everything. And I loved how we were all seated: so far from each other, it all felt anonymous. Normally at a fashion show, everyone looks at each other – who wears what, who sits where. ‘Oh, she’s got the new Céline shoes.’ But here you felt as if you were on your own. It was a new feeling.

Fashion shows are all about expectation and anxiety. We’re all on display. It’s theatre. I’m fifty-seven and I know that when the shows come around in September I will feel vulnerable. Will I still get a ticket? Where will I sit? I haven’t had to think about those things for twenty-five years. Most people who leave Vogue end up feeling that they’re lesser than, and the fact is that you’re never bigger than the company you work for. But I have a new idea now, and if it comes off maybe I won’t be feeling so vulnerable after all. We’ll have to wait and see.

There are very few fashion magazines that make you feel empowered. Most leave you totally anxiety-ridden, for not having the right kind of dinner party, setting the table in the right kind of way or meeting the right kind of people. Truth be told, I haven’t read Vogue in years. Maybe I was too close to it after working there for so long, but I never felt I led a Vogue-y kind of life. The clothes are just irrelevant for most people – so ridiculously expensive. What magazines want today is the latest, the exclusive. It’s a shame that magazines have lost the authority they once had. They’ve stopped being useful. In fashion we are always trying to make people buy something they don’t need. We don’t need any more bags, shirts or shoes. So we cajole, bully or encourage people into continue buying. I know glossy magazines are meant to be aspirational, but why not be both useful and aspirational? That’s the kind of fashion magazine I’d like to see.

Lucinda Chambers served as fashion director of British Vogue for 25 years.

Anja Aronowsky Kronberg is Vestoj's Editor-in-Chief and Founder.

Friday, June 30, 2017

Diners, Dresses & Dives

NEW WORK: CHICAGO MAGAZINE, Diners, Dresses & Dives

Photographer: T.Harrison Hillman
Stylist: Jessica Moazami
Hair: Caitlin Krenz at FACTOR ARTISTS
Make Up: Kerre Berry at FACTOR ARTISTS
Models: Cole, Katie Cook, Mabel T at FACTOR WOMEN Model Management
Stylist assistant: Tamar Fasja Unikel and Olivia Lavery
Photography assistant: Justin Butzen

Chicago Magazine's Diners, Dresses & Dives fashion shoot, shot at Billy Goat
Chicago Magazine's Diners, Dresses & Dives fashion shoot, shot at Palace Grill
Chicago Magazine's Diners, Dresses & Dives fashion shoot, shot at The Empty Bottle
Chicago Magazine's Diners, Dresses & Dives fashion shoot, shot at Valois
Chicago Magazine's Diners, Dresses & Dives fashion shoot, shot at Margie's Candies

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

ON THE BREEZE six outdoorsy men's fragrances for spring

NEW WORK: CHICAGO MAGAZINE
Top to bottom:
Narcissi Rodriguez for him bleu noir eau de toilette, $88 for 3.3 oz, Sephora.
YSL Le Vestiaire des Parfums Tuxedo eau de parfum, $250 for 4.2 oz, Neiman Marcus.
Prada L’Homme eau de toilette, $78 for 1.7 oz, Bloomingdale’s.
Tom Ford Sole Di Positano eau de cologne, $225 for 1.7 oz, Tom Ford.
Valentino Uomo Intense eau de parfum, $102 for 3.4 oz, Nordstrom.
Cartier L’Envol de Cartier eau de parfum, $132 for 3.3 oz, Cartier.

Friday, June 16, 2017

Lucinda Chambers says Goodbye to Vogue

Fashion Director Lucinda announced last month that she is leaving British Vogue after 25 years. I had the privilege of being her intern when I started my career 16 years ago. British Vogue won't be the same without her; she is a true visionary. She often worked with young designers, photographers, and models — as well as the big names like Mario Testino and Kate Moss. Fashion Junkie looks back at some of the beautiful and unique shoots she's styled over the years.

Tuesday, June 06, 2017

BEAUTY CONFESSIONS: Barry Beck co-founder of Bluemercury

Barry Beck beauty confessions on Addictions of a fashion junkie
If you feel shopping for beauty products at a department store too pressurized and impersonal, then you need to check out Bluemercury. Started in 1999 by husband and wife entrepreneurs Barry and Marla Beck. Their concept was to create a neighborhood beauty and spa boutique that offered varied or exclusive products in a more relaxed setting. With over 130 stores nationwide the luxury retailer has been wildly successful, they’ve just opened their 7th Chicago store and plan to open seven more throughout the city. I spoke to Barry to find out his beauty confessions.
Barry Beck of Bluemercury's favorite beauty product, Molton Brown

WHAT IS YOUR BEAUTY ADDICTION? I love Molton Brown; I use their body wash every single day, it's my favorite product, it’s like a treatment in the morning, and it makes me feel better. People always think that I use ‘Black Peppercorn’ because it’s more masculine, but the truth is I use ‘Pink Pepperpod’.
WHAT’S YOUR FAV THING ABOUT LIVING IN DC?
It is a gateway city. When you look at America you got these gateway cities; you got NY, DC, Chicago and LA. So it’s an incredible gateway city, it’s still manageable, and you're able to get around. And it still has that wonderful suburban feel to it even though it’s growing so fast. It’s an incredible city, and I love it. And I love Georgetown, where we are based, it’s so vibrant and exciting with incredible shops and restaurants, and I love being there.

WHICH CITY SPENDS THE MOST ON BEAUTY PRODUCTS?
Definitely, New York City but Number 2 is Chicago and number 3 is LA. Chicago is in front of LA!

LAST FILM YOU WATCHED?
Miss Sloane, with Jessica Chastain, great movie and you know what I loved about it the most? Her outfits. Every woman should go out right now and watch that movie just to see what she wore. The outfits were so chic, so stylish so wonderful. It might be hard to pull some of them off like the patent leather, but she was so elegant, so timeless.
Miss Sloane favorite film of Barry Beck
WHO WAS YOUR CELEBRITY CRUSH GROWING UP?
Heather Locklear … and my guy crush is Leonardo DiCaprio, I love him. He’s my favorite actor in the world; he’s such a movie star. I was in a room with him once, in California we were at a party together. And he walked into the room, and you can just tell he was a true Hollywood star, love him…elegant, refined and he is a Bluemercury customer.

FAVORITE PRODUCT IN YOUR STORE?
My favorite number one product is the Power Glow Peel. I love it, especially for guys... it’s one minute, change your life, make you look better, swipe to the right, and it’s no fuss!

WHAT’S YOUR CHOICE OF DRINK?
Macallan 18, I’m a scotch guy.

FAVORITE BOOK?
The Snowball about Warren Buffett, you know why? It teaches me lessons on business and life.

Bluemercury North River Chicago store opening
Bluemercury's new North River store, 356 North Clarke Street, is now open.

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

FASHIONABLE DISCOVERIES: Bespoke Apothecary Preparations

The trend of bespoke of beauty products and services continues. Back in August for the Chicago Tribune, I tried out two new customized services, one for make-up, (Lancôme) and the other for hair (Kerastase), which you can read about here.

Now we can add skincare to the list with Kiehl’s. Originally an Apothecary when it first opened in 1851, customers would go to Kiehl’s for your prescription medicine as well as customized herbal and natural skin and hair remedies. Kiehl’s has decided to go back to its roots, with a personalized skincare service called Apothecary Preparations.

I was fortunate enough to be invited along to try out their new service.
Kiehl’s Bespoke Apothecary Preparations
Step 1: Diagnosis
At your one-on-one consultation with a Kiehl's customer representative, aka KCR, your skin will be diagnosed. The surface oil on your face is measured to help identify your skin type (normal, oily, combo or dry). I'm a combo, as I'm oily on my T-zones and normal to dry elsewhere.
Kiehl’s a moisture monitor part of Bespoke Apothecary Preparations
Then a dehydration analyzer will be used to measure the water in your skin, 1 being the lowest and 100 the highest. I was told you don't want anything less than 50, I, unfortunately, got a disappointing 34. What does that mean? My skin is dehydrated, and I need to start drinking lots more water.
Talking with Kiehl's customer representative, aka KCR, at my Bespoke Apothecary Preparations appointment
Step 2: Selection
Next, you discuss with your KCR a series of skin-related issues, like texture, dullness, redness, wrinkles and pore size and identify which two are your main concerns. This determines the two skin boosters that will be mixed in with your base concentrate, to create your individual serum. I went with Brightening and Pore Minimizing.
Step 3: Personalization
You leave with a box and bottle with your name plus details of your personal formula and directions for use.
My personalized prescription
Your personalized serum is recorded in the system for future reorders.
Apothecary Preparations is currently available at 21 of their stores and retails for $95. Go to kiehls.com to find your nearest location.

Monday, May 22, 2017

CAT'S MEOW eight statement rings for your next cocktail party

NEW WORK: CHICAGO MAGAZINE
Cocktail ring shoot with kitten from Paws for Chicago Magazine
INDEX FINGER:
18 karat white gold with 38.48 carat Aquamarine and pave diamonds ring, $60,200, Sidney Garber, 118 East Delaware Place.
Swarovski Crystals triangle ring $169 (part of a set), Swarovski, 540 Michigan Avenue.

MIDDLE FINGER:
18 karat white gold and 1 carat diamond criss cross ring, $4,490, James & Son, 1457 N Halsted St.
18 karat yellow gold and.60 carat diamond wraparound comet in ring, $4,990, James & Son, 1457 N Halsted St.

RING FINGER:br /> 18 karat white and rose gold, 11 carat center lemon quartz and diamond ring, $5,800, Pomellato, 41 E Oak St.
Platinum Spessartite 13.24 carat ring, $65,000, Tiffany & Co., 730 N Michigan Ave.
18 karat blush gold, platinum and 1.21 carat center diamond with 49 pave-set .32 carat diamonds ring, $9040, Eve J. Alfillé Gallery & Studio, 623 Grove Street, Evanston.

PINKY FINGER:
Sterling silver Prasiolite ring, $1,300, David Yurman, 40 East Oak St.