mod men

The Next Step = A Big Move.

Posted in Uncategorized by modman on April 12, 2010

WordPress has been the home for modmen for a couple months now and I’ve become so attached.. not to wordpress but to the content that I have built since last year.. but this seems like the end!

The move was necessary. Although its scary to think about hosting a standalone site, the next step is here. The growth is natural. Progression is inevitable. Visit me at

the modman @ http://www.themodman.net/http://www.themodman.net/http://www.themodman.net/

Check it out!

love,
_danny

NYFW Trend : Victoria Beckham Collection.

Posted in Uncategorized by modman on April 2, 2010

bryanboy tweeted not too long ago that style.com and other runway photography sites should include images of the back of garments and I couldnt agree more. There are so many intricacies that are already lost in photographs.. the zippers, the fabrics, the textures, the contrasts.. all the details that actually matter. But even more of an issue is the fact that people can only see the front of garments online.

I wish I could have seen the Victoria Beckham Collection in its entirety, the backs included. Then I think I would have had such a greater appreciation for her collection.. (I wrote about how I wasnt blown away by her most recent army of dresses). Here’s a detailed review of the collection and VB’s history from Times Online that really solidified my love for Victoria. Check it out!

It may be indelicate. But if you’d choose to describe Victoria Beckham as a “hot mom”, then fair enough. However there are better times (and better places) to do this than to her face at 11am on Valentine’s Day in the £19 million townhouse on East 63rd Street where she is showcasing her latest ready-to-wear collection.

Sadly, nobody pointed this out to the campish American fashion hack who did precisely that (in unprintable terms). As Mrs B cried “No!” in a vain attempt to forestall him, he inquired whether she ever worried that one day Brooklyn, Romeo and Cruz might discover that their friends had more than cookies on their minds when they came to hang chez Beckham.

In unison, the clutch of top-tier editors — from publications including American Vogue, Vanity Fair and Le Figaro — laughed two octaves higher than is entirely comfortable. Then Beckham neatly defused the situation with an elegant response, and bid everyone — but The Times’s Lisa Armstrong and me — adieu. As they oozed off towards the marbled doorway, she turned to us, held up her hands and said: “Look, my palms are sweating!”

As well they might have been. Because for this, her fourth collection, the eponymous figurehead of the newly christened Victoria Beckham label faced the fashion pack head on — and, for the first time, she won them over completely. From the New York Post to Women’s Wear Daily via Style.com, every review has been a rave or near-rave. And this has been a genuine critical response, unsullied by over-zealous PR or indirect kickbacks: as Beckham is not yet a significant advertiser, none of the reviewers had any reason to be anything but honest.

Beckham, it is belatedly being realised, might yet — in her own way — become just as notable a young female British designer as the vaunted trinity of Hannah MacGibbon, Stella McCartney and Phoebe Philo. But because fashion is intrinsically snobby — although most fashion people would call this “discerning” — Posh (as she was never sincerely called), has been a difficult sell for many. Only a few years ago British High Street PRs sniffed that they dreaded seeing Posh wearing their clothes.

Now, though, she has broken them down; primarily through the quality of the clothes, but also via disarming touches such as admitting her relative ignorance. Take this cheery New York confession: “Look, it’s a very basic way that I am doing this. You can see that from the gold dress. The drape has literally been draped on me. We tied it in a knot. And I thought ‘that looks really cool — I like that’. Technically it’s probably not the right way to do things. But there’s a really fun, playful atmosphere in the studio.”

Later, she adds: “I have had to prove myself. But that’s a good thing: everybody has to prove themselves, not just me . . . I want to grow as a designer, I want to learn the techniques and do more and more.”

Part of this self-imposed initiation is Beckham’s decision not to show the collection as a traditional show. Instead Beckham semi-masochistically subjects herself to intimate presentations at which she commentates on each of the 25 or so dresses.

This year, she tells us in a nervily stiff voice, she has taken “a more sophisticated and daring approach to our evening wear”. Which translates into a series of 1930s and 1940s siren-wear-inspired dresses for the modern knock-out. All heavily corseted, in raglan, silk, crepe or wool, they have a confident simplicity zinged up by soft-touch details including neck folds, gold zips, narrow little belts and a Dick Tracy inspired print on her beloved Cloud Dress. Most of the collection comes in either black or fleshy silk, but the odd flash of colour — in sapphire, emerald or ruby — is eye-catching without being brash.

Yes, Victoria Beckham is a (crocked) footballer’s wife, but nobody — even the snobbiest of those snobs — can call this stuff vulgar. The most important critics of all — the consumers — have already worked this out. From Corso Como, to Net-a-Porter, to Selfridges and Bergdorf Goodman, the international outlets that stock Beckham’s dresses all report a near-to-100 per cent sell through.

Next season’s collection has already been swooped on by Beckham’s new celebrity clientele: in the past couple of weeks Cameron Diaz wore the one-shouldered gold jacquard dress to theVanity Fair Oscars party, Demi Moore opted for the sapphire silk column dress, and last week at a White House do Sarah Jessica Parker went for a Victoria Beckham number in cerise. This is an extremely good hit rate. Or, as Beckham says: “The support has been fantastic. And it’s been great that it’s been on lots of different body shapes as well. There have been tiny people wearing the dresses, such as Madonna, and then Jennifer Hudson wore one at the Golden Globes. The way the dresses have been constructed means that they are really flattering.” Flattering to Hudson, and certainly to the super-skinny models at her presentation.

Madonna is the only person to whom Beckham has sent an unsolicited freebie. It was a black-bodiced, ivory-skirted version of a corset dress that she spotted Madonna wearing for an American fashion shoot. And considering the competition it must have faced, that Beckham freebie got an impressive airing: Madonna wore it for her birthday supper last August at the Hotel Splendido in Portofino.

All the Victoria Beckham collection is made in London. And Beckham insists that she now sees design as her full-time, long-term job. “And,” she adds, “I think my middle son thinks that he is going to take over. Romeo likes to get involved.” He certainly has a good name for fashion design. Yet despite her commitment to the company’s London HQ, Beckham says that her family has no plans to leave Los Angeles. “The kids are settled in school, and very happy. And we have a lovely team of people. I travel a lot — Milan, London — and the kids enjoy it, soaking up the culture.”

Creating a red-letter collection of red-carpet dresses is labour intensive. One dress in particular, that Cloud, took up days of Beckham’s time as she and her team strove to get it just so (“it was crazy the amount of hours, days and days, but I was adamant”). And, as Beckham so disarmingly concedes, she is learning on the job: “That’s how it works. I make it on me, to very much what I like.”

This is decadent, yet Beckham says that her fashion business is in profit. “We’ve relaunched the denim and the sunglasses. And we’ve got a fragrance that’s been hugely successful too. So it funds itself.”

As she speaks, her salespeople are with buyers, on another floor of the New York house, showcasing the Cutler & Gross sunglass collaboration and the denim line. The house, by the way, was used as Carrie Bradshaw’s dream penthouse in the Sex and the Cityfilm, and Beckham briefly fantasises about buying it — perhaps, one day, to be a New York flagship for her brand. “This feels like the first season where this could be the house of Victoria Beckham, if you like. The first time I went into a Tom Ford store, years ago, I was so impressed. I loved the feeling of it being Tom Ford’s house.”

Even facing the fashion critics close-up, Beckham is confident enough to team her simple-but-sexy new-season dress with unextended hair and straight-up make-up. “Things have changed,” she says, before unveiling dark news for St Tropez, “I’ve downgraded the fake tan and the big hair. I just wanted a more natural look — a much more natural look. And I’m not going back, either.”

Two fashion weeks later, at Roland Mouret’s RM show in Paris, I met the man who has backed both Beckham and Mouret: Simon Fuller. This new-generation fashion mogul (he now owns Storm model agency, the Fashionair website, as well as holding interests in both labels) said: “I have the utmost respect for the individuals. With Roland and Victoria I will not second guess them.” Later he added: “I believe in Victoria, because it is her passion.”

And you can tell. Because why else would Victoria Beckham feel the need to talk us through each dress, or point out again and again that she’s only new to the fashion game, or put up with a bunch of facile questions from a bunch of fashion journalists? It’s not as if she could do with the cash.

Apropos facile questions, when that guy came up with his “do you worry your sons’ friends will think you’re a hot mom” question, Beckham’s response was impeccable. She said: “As long as it’s not their girlfriends wanting to get their hands on my handbags, I don’t really care!” Then she added: “I wouldn’t really say that I’m a sexy mum. I’d say I’m a full-on mum. It’s a balancing act, as any working mum out there knows.”

As we tootle off to the next show, Victoria Beckham waves her now-unsweaty palms around her showroom and says: “This is very much me. I feel more confident in myself because I feel fulfilled, creatively and professionally. I’ve still got a long way to go, but I feel very happy. I’m in a good place in my life. And I don’t feel I have to prove myself as much as I used to have to.”

_Times Online.

NYFW Trend : Capes.

Posted in Uncategorized by modman on March 30, 2010

My favorite trends of the fall collections are capes. Who doesnt love a cape? Fairy tale characters like Snow White and Little Red Riding Hood had them. Superheroes like Batman and Superman sport them. Why shouldnt we?

Capes come in all different colors and sizes for so many occasions. Why do I bring this up when we’ve been having sunny weather in LA for the last few weeks? Forecasts predict rain/showers for Wednesday and Thursday of this week. Although you might not be able to get these designer pieces just yet, dont hesitate to invest in a quality cape to get you through the rain, wind, and whatever else might blow your way (like snow in NY!).

Earth tones – Carolina Herrera, Alexander Wang, 3.1 Phillip Lim, Matthew Ames

Textured greys – Cynthia Steffe, Rag & Bone, Paris 68, Zero + Maria Cornejo

Midnight blacks – Elie Tahari, Rad Hourani, 3.1 Phillip Lim, Y-3

Are there trends that you would like to see/broken down? I would love your input/comments/suggestions! Dont hesitate to send me an email or leave a comment! Make it a terrific Tuesday. : P

NYFW Trend : Shorts.

Posted in Uncategorized by modman on March 26, 2010

Dont call them Bermuda shorts! Think of them as.. oversized and loose. These shorts are fall trends that you can get now, especially since the weather has been fairly warm during the past week. The thicker cottons and textured wools will keep you warm from the nighttime chill, making these shorts perfect to go from day to night!

3.1 Phillip Lim, ADAM, Juan Carlos Obando, Karen Walker

Richard Chai Love, Mulberry, Michael Kors, Reed Krakoff

Dont you love the color schemes? There are so many rich colors for fall.. which I’m loving much more than soft, pastel hues that dominate spring.. weird. We’ll see how long this lasts! Enjoy your shorts and try and get some sun at the beach or at a pool this weekend! It should be around 80 degrees in el yay! :]

Building Awareness via Fashion: World Water Day

Posted in Uncategorized by modman on March 22, 2010

Plenty of designers have been inspired by water in some form: crashing waves, fast-flowing rivers, violent rapids, trickling streams and quiet creeks. Despite having been inspired by one of the strongest elements, very few have brought awareness to the reality of usable water: its shortage.

The United Nations recognizes today as World Water Day. This years theme is “Clean Water for a Healthy World”. I learned this in middle school and it has stuck with me since: the earth is covered by 70-75% water, 97% is in the oceans and 1% is available for human use. The world population is approximately 6.7 billion and we live in a world that is controlled by private corporations and corrupt governments that control and limit access to basic necessities, like water and housing, and other resources.

There is a shortage of available drinking water in so many countries. Even if there is a water supply, most of it is contaminated with pollutants and other debris. Developing countries do not have strict laws that police water pollution. Industries that do pollute the water have no incentive not to. Because of the lack of drinking water, poverty-stricken villagers resort to taking in whatever water they can find, which results in water-borne illnesses. Diarrhea is a top infant killer, and “1.8 million children aged under five who succumb to water-borne diseases. This equates to one infant every 20 seconds” (csmonitor).

I can list fact after fact and reality after reality all day, but that wont do any good. People are stricken the moment they see a devastating picture or are horrified when they hear the number of deaths caused by diarrhea. But very few act on their emotions.

It is sometimes difficult for me to wrap my head around international issues like this.. especially because I feel that its so far removed from my life. This is exactly the wrong perception. Non-profit organizations such as charity water, the water project, and Drop in the Bucket help bring awareness, funds and sustainable practices to developing nations.

Leanne Marshall, winner of Project Runway’s season 5, showed a collection at Bryant Park that was entirely inspired by water and waves. A challenge from this season’s Project Runway was to create a piece that was inspired by the four elements: earth, air, fire, or water. If fashion can draw on inspiration of such powerful forces, imagine what fashion can do for humanitarian awareness.

NYFW Trend : Belts Dominate.

Posted in Uncategorized by modman on March 22, 2010

The original purpose of a belt was to hold up pants at the waist. Clearly, the belt has transformed from a practical tool into a stylish accessory. There were all sorts of belts on the runway in New York.. some for the practical and simple, some for the girly, some for the bold and brave, and some that were simply outrageous (in a good way!). Whatever your style, here are a few of the best of each category that may give you ideas on how to belt your blazer, coat, or your whole upper body!

Black & Simple: 3.1 Phillip Lim, Charlotte Ronson, Doo.Ri, Elie Tahari

Harness/Body Belt: Wayne, L.A.M.B., Michael Kors, Reed Krakoff

Belts with a Purpose: Betsey Johnson, Rag & Bone x2, Reed Krakoff

Thin & Pretty: Carolina Herrera, Chado Ralph Rucci, Jeremy Laing, Oscar de la Renta

“Not Your Usual” Belt: Jeremy Scott, Ohne Titel, Thakoon, Zero + Maria Cornejo

Studded, Embellished, Shiny: Victoria Beckham, Anna Sui, Preen, Diesel Black Gold

Los Angeles Fashion Week.

Posted in Uncategorized by modman on March 20, 2010

And just as finals week comes to an end.. LA Fashion MONTH begins. Every time I feel like I may get a good chunk of time to think and write, something always comes up. That’s never an excuse though! I definitely will write updates on some thoughts in-between all the trips to downtown LA for shows, presentations and whatnot. Thanks for tuning in!

2NE1 Leads the Korean Fashion Pack.

Posted in Uncategorized by modman on March 13, 2010

Korean girl group MV’s were never very good.. they used to be mostly 1) girls in cute/school girl/pink outfits prancing around, never really singing and definitely not good at dancing, 2) girls in leather trying to dance provocatively. And failing. For the most part, its still the same.

Thankfully, though, there are a select number of entertainers/girl groups like Hyori, BoA, Brown Eyed Girls and a few others that have ventured out with new concepts over the years. Currently, 2NE1 leads the pack in fusing fashion, art, graphic/3D design and music into one mind-blowing video.

2NE1 hasnt been out for very long, but they have definitely made a name for themselves early on, and fast. CL, Minzy, Bom and Dara have unique, distinctive styles that separate the group from SNSD, Kara, T-ara, etc. Their eclectic music serves as the perfect platform for out-of-this-world fashion.

The two men behind 2ne1’s style are Yang Seung Ho and Lee Hyun Jung. Yang is a graduate from Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design (a school that boasts John Galliano, the late Alexander McQueen, Gareth Pugh as alumni). Lee is a graduate of Chelsea College of Art. Yang and Lee are besties with Big Bang’s G-Dragon.. if you didnt know before, you can definitely see that they have similar tastes. Yang and Lee arent about traditional fashion or classic styles. The duo embraces avant-garde, futuristic and fun styles. They especially love the work of American fashion wild-child, Jeremy Scott (shoutout to 2ne1 on the wikipage!). Whats not to love?

Check out the visually stimulating MV for Try To Follow Me. CL (이채린) OWNS the MV. Dont you agree?

But I hope 2ne1 doesnt follow in the footsteps of Nicole vs. The Pussycat Dolls.. That would be a shame.

GlobalTex, LA International Textile & Sourcing Fair.

Posted in Uncategorized by modman on March 9, 2010

GlobalTex, a textile and sourcing trade show, was in town last week. I was hesitant to go to the GlobalTex Trade show because 1) it was in downtown, and on a school day, 2) it was a textile and sourcing event, 3) I had no one to go with. In the end, I made transportation arrangements, took care of my classes, and felt that I should learn more about the textile industry. And New York Fashion Week trained me well to go to events alone. I overcame all of my obstacles and I am glad I made the effort to check it out. I met some amazing people and gained knowledge about a division of the fashion industry that I never knew about or took the time to research, until now.

GlobalTex, the premier West Coast textiles trade show, took over Los Angeles Convention Center for the LA International Textile & Sourcing Fair last week from March 2-4, 2010. It has been described as “the largest tradeshow in the United States for apparel textiles and technology, created to meet the high-growth demands of the global textile industry” (GlobalTex). I made a trip out to downtown Los Angeles to check out the events, seminars and exhibits featured at the GlobalTex Fair.

After picking up my press Fast Pass, I browsed exhibitor booths and observed buyer/seller interactions. The number of exhibitors that were there was surprising. There were exhibitors from Portugal, India, London, Bangladesh, New York, Vietnam, China and France, to name a few. Companies that specialized in goods such as labeling, hardware, graphics and design software, and all kinds of fabrics could be found in one area. There were quite a few service-oriented agencies including trend forecasting firms, design studios, garment manufacturing and production companies and publication businesses in another section of West Hall.

Exhibitors were divided and laid out based on common Global Styles next to corresponding trend displays, which were extremely well designed and well constructed. Global Styles are product categories that represent the complete supply chain.

Live: Alluring resources to live to the max: silks, knits, velvet/velour, lace, linen, fur, embroidery/ribbon
Dwell: Imagining the essence of home
Work: The structured downtown experience: suitings, wool, linen, knits, wovens/shirtings
Play: Comfortable materials for everyday dreams: cotton, linen, shirtings, knits, prints
Wear: Denim for every moment and every style
Create: The inspiration destination: trend/color services, fibers, art studios
Adorn: A notion of the necessary: buttons, trims, hardware
Move: Capturing the energy of the race: tech/performance fabrics, knits
Process: Technology and equipment to help develop what’s next
Source: Visualize production and design possibilities from global manufacturers large and small

I was especially interested in the seminars. I made sure to attend the seminars on Spring/Summer 2011 Color and Lifestyle Trends and Women’s and Men’s Trend Focus for Spring/Summer 2011. The Panel Discussion about New Developments for Today’s Fashions focused on innovative fabrics where I learned more about the research goes into fabric development. I hope to hear more about the growth and expansion of organic and sustainable fabrics. The Big Picture Seminar centered on the retailer & consumer relationship. There is an immediate connection to the consumer and business models are changing to meet the high demands of well-informed, educated customers. Finally, the Financing Fashion in 2010 Panel Discussion featured Kevin Sullivan, Executive Vice President of Wells Fargo Trade Capital and Ilse Metcheck, President of California Fashion Association, among many others.

I am currently typing up the notes that I took during these seminars. I cannot wait until finals are over so I can go back and analyze what it is that I learned and apply it to my own thoughts.

The next GlobalTex Show will be September 28-30, 2010. Look forward to more exhibitors, up-to-date seminars, panel discussions and a great experience at the premier West Coast textiles trade show!

The Academy Awards : A Formal Affair.

Posted in Uncategorized by modman on March 6, 2010

I dont like that evening gowns and dresses are automatically labeled as “red carpet looks”, even if they will be worn on the red carpet. Some designers base their collections largely on eveningwear and they are known to some as Hollywood sellouts. That perception is completely uncalled for. Who doesnt love to see beautiful art from the runway on real women with amazing talent? Thats exactly what The Academy Awards is all about, recognizing actors and actresses with a special gift of bringing a script to life.

Here are some amazing pieces that I spotted during New York Fashion Week last month. It used to be rare that actresses were able to get their hands on evening gowns straight off the runway but the industry has picked up the pace to meet the demand, especially if it means that the gown will hit the Oscar red carpet. Stylists like Rachel Zoe were probably at New York, London, Milan and Paris Fashion Weeks to do just that, pick out Oscar-worthy dresses.

Carlos Miele, Halston and Monique Lhuillier give shots of color into their collections. Carolina Herrera designed a gorgeous batch of gowns that have the signature classic Herrera look.

Reem Acra, Monique Lhuillier, Lela Rose and Victoria Beckham have designed off-the-shoulder looks that create lovely silhouettes. I cant wait to see what Victoria Beckham wears.