Rule making to regulate flammability of bedclothes put on hold

Hardy Poole, Vice President, Regulatory and Technical Affairs, National Textile Association (NTA) reports that the California Bureau of Home Furnishings (CBHF) has suspended efforts to begin a formal rulemaking to regulate the flammability of filled bedclothes like comforters, pillows and mattress pads. The Bureau had been working to develop a proposed rule for several years but work on the proposal slowed and, apparently, stopped in recent months.

On the federal level Hardy reports that the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) published an Advanced Notice of Proposed Rulemaking for open flame ignition of bedclothes on January 13, 2005 and sought comments from the public.

NTA responded but, since that time, CPSC has not considered the matter as a high priority. With the CBHF's suspension of the rulemaking, the CPSC program is the only regulatory effort underway to address the flammability of bedcloth

Future remains difficult - Macy's President

Macy's, Inc provided updated sales and earnings guidance for the first quarter and full year of fiscal 2010.

For the first quarter, which ends May 1, the company continues to expect same-store sales to be up by approximately 5 percent. This is consistent with previous guidance provided on April 8.

First quarter earnings per diluted share are expected to be approximately break-even. This includes $27 million in premium and fees related to repurchase of debt, as previously announced. In last year's first quarter, the company lost 16 cents per diluted share, excluding restructuring charges.

"Our very strong results so far this year reflect continued progress on our key strategic initiatives, including My Macy's localization and multichannel integration," said Terry J. Lundgren, chairman, president and chief executive of Macy's, Inc. "We believe we still are in the early stages of implementation of our new strategies, which were enabled by the unification of the Macy's organization at this time last year. Thus, we are optimistic about the company's ongoing ability to grow sales and earnings and capture market share."

Alfred Angelo develops Purely Alfred Angelo

Alfred Angelo Bridal is turning over a new leaf: introducing Purely Alfred Angelo, the first eco-friendly bridesmaid collection.

“Green weddings” are all the rage as Generation Y steps up to the altar with a concern for sustainability and the environment. Answering this call, and requests from retailers for truly wear-again styling, Alfred Angelo developed Purely Alfred Angelo, a collection of wear-again bridesmaids in eco-friendly cotton and silk.

Company spokesperson Barb Pflaumer commented, “With so much talk about wear again bridesmaids, and the success of our top selling “Dream in Color” bridesmaids collection, we know we have hit the mark with Purely Alfred Angelo. Not only can these dresses be worn after the wedding, they are made from natural fabrics, so bridal parties will be comfortable and confident that their dresses were made from eco-friendly materials.” Continues Pflaumer, “Dresses are intended to be worn dressed up or casual. Simply add a few accessories to your eco-friendly style, and you’re “remaid” for a day at the office, a weekend of shopping or a dressy evening out.”

Designer Michael Shettel created the collection in silk dupioni solids and plaids, crinkle chiffon, cotton sateen and floral printed cotton and silk voile. Silhouettes are short, sassy, and ultra feminine with delicate shirring, origami ruffles, soft pleats and side pockets. Colors are vibrant: Island Pink, Capri Blue, Orange Sunset; or in natural tones of Fern, Latte and Maize. Watercolor prints and lush plaids accent the collection in Creamsicle and Blue Blossom. 

Simple Tips to Dress Better

Let’s start with the Basics:

Most of us get confused with how to dress better and lot of questions like, what to wear? Will the clothes suit me? Are they comfortable? And many more questions in our mind waste a lot time. To dress better you need to follow few simple tips. There are no particular rules of fashion that you need to follow for a better look. Here are few steps that you need to follow to look better.

Make sure you always look clean and spotless:

looking clean and tidy makes a loot of sense. Before you dress up, take a little care of your clothes. The fundamental things are ironing your dress, polishing shoes and if you are going to wear a tie choose the right one. Those are the things you need to follow before dressing, later while washing don’t forget to follow the directions like, dry clean only and wash with like colors. Although you can't change yourself into ‘the world's best dresser’, you can always improve your appearance by looking clean and tidy.

Make sure that you are Comfortable:

Choose things that fit you. Make sure that you are able to sit and stand freely without any discomforts. Anything that is too tight gives the false impression of being too small and therefore making your body look fat. Clothes that are skin tight looks like you can't pay for good-fitting clothing. In addition tight clothes are not good for your health. Choose styles that show off your waistline and your body nice-looking, but don't make it look squashed or compress.

Choose the right color:

Do you know the magic of colors?

Colors can make you look younger, appear a few pounds lighter, feel fabulous, look very good, can increases your confidence and receive compliments everywhere you go. Colors highlight your own natural beauty. Keep bright colors away no matter what your skin tone is. Bright colors like florescent yellow reveals low profile.

Keep an update on trends:

Last but not the least, always keep updated with what is new in the fashion world and don’t exceed current trends.

Hansiba to increase domestic & global reach

Despite the fact that global exports of handicrafts took a big hit in the last 16-18 months, following the global slowdown, Gujarat based Self Employed Women’s Association (SEWA) has drawn expansion plans for its premium handicraft brand ‘Hansiba’, which it had launched last year, along with aiming for a sales growth of 40 percent year-on-year.

Actually, those dark days, was the period when SEWA Trade Facilitation Centre (STFC) started diversifying by spreading its wings in to new overseas neighbouring markets like Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Bangladesh and Afghanistan. Alongside it will also strengthen its presence in India by opening eight more stores in India, to raise its store count to 11.

Also, in the pipeline is an exclusive line of fabrics and apparels; ‘Sabaah’, which will be exclusively retailed in the international markets. In a bid to reduce the impact of global slowdown, it will directly approach international retailers rather than through intermediates. In the previous fiscal, exports were down by 50 percent, which prompted STFC to take this decision. Fibre2Fashion spoke exclusively to Ms Reema Nanavaty, Director, Economic and Rural Development, SEWA, who spared her valuable time to speak to us and told about the future plans of Hansiba brand and the initiatives taken by SEWA.

We began this informative session by asking her to divulge the expansion plans of Hansiba, to which she said, “STFC has traversed a significant distance along the path of building a successful business organization model, a company owned by the women artisans themselves as a sustainable business enterprise. STFC is now clear on the future journey. It needs to communicate the USP of “Hand Embellishment” successfully through the brand 'Hansiba'.

“STFC has gained considerable experience in the retail market through both B2B and B2C businesses and feels that it is the right time to start focusing on marketing embellishments. STFC’s marketing focus is now to communicate STFC products, more so as “Wearable Art”, rather than a garment. STFC’s proposed strategy will focus on the ethnic / ethno modern women’s apparels, home furnishings and gifts /accessories in the high end premium market, the mainstream fashion market and staple products market. STFC is entering into the high end premium market segment by co-branding with the labels and designers or design houses.

“The strategy is to market the embroideries and designs so as to ensure better remuneration to the artisan women. STFC plans to achieve 100% growth in business turnover in the next three years. In addition to this, there are initiatives like launching our crafts in neighboring countries like Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Nepal, Pakistan and Bhutan under the brand-name of SABAH. (SABAH is a noun in Urdu language, whose dictionary meaning is early morning breeze, which also denotes freshness.)

Bon Bon creates trendsetting looks for successful man Bon Bodywear has recently globally launched a fashionable and revolutionary underwear brand, creating a luxurious clothing experience, complete with trendsetting looks for the successful man.

With the company mantra of "Live Liberally", Bon Bon Bodywear is specially designed for today's creative, self-confident man, and incorporates a balanced mix of modern basics, popular trends and high fashion. Every collection has a unique story behind it, appealing to a man's original personality and stylish flare. By complementing progressive ideas in men's fashion with their trademark fun-loving style, Bon Bon creates revolutionary pieces that are a form of art, at an affordable price.

To this end, Bon Bon works creatively with the world's top designers and visual artists, crafting hip underwear that represents the best upcoming trends in the artistic, fashion and sporting communities.

"Bon Bon's pieces are the perfect choice for both daily wear and special occasions, says Vladimir Markovich, Creative Director, Bon Bon Bodywear, "where men want to come off as classically stylish while also projecting a sincere attention to the finer details, reflective of their diverse lifestyles."

A fresh approach to men's underwear, Bon Bon features eclectic collections that come in a fashionable array of colors and neutrals, with well thought out concepts and attention to details, giving men an attractive masculine feel with a flair of hip, premium underwear worthy of a cutting edge wardrobe accessory.

"To put it short, when you think of Bon Bon, think LUXURY. Seriously, these are incredibly soft and of really high quality," raves Men's Wear Review, a popular men's underwear blog focused on the latest trends and products. "All-in-all, I absolutely love Bon Bon. I can't say enough positives about how soft Bon Bon pieces are."

Other thoughts from menswear reviewers from around the world:

"Bon Bon Bodywear is a premium brand and it shows from the moment you pick up the box. It's solid, substantial and glossy, just like a special package picked up from Tiffany & Co." – Daily Jocks

"It's difficult to hide my genuine enthusiasm when it comes to Bon Bon underwear. Much too often you will pay a premium for high-end brands, just to be disappointed with the cut, production quality, durability, etc. Let me tell you: nothing will disappoint you with Bon Bon briefs." – Guy's Underwear Blog

Biggest UNIQLO global flagship store coming to Shanghai

Following stores in New York, Paris, and London, UNIQLO will open the Shanghai West Nanjing Road Store on May 15th, its 4th and largest global flagship store.

Boasting a massive sales floor of 1,100 tsubo (39,000 ft2), the UNIQLO Shanghai Global Flagship Store will bring together the latest fashions with the highest standards in products, visual merchandising, sales and store operations, customer service and creativity. The Shanghai West Nanjing Store will serve as a base for UNIQLO to reach from Shanghai to the rest of Asia and the world.

UNIQLO’s Global Flagship Store at West Nanjing Road Opening May 15th

UNIQLO’s 4th global flagship following New York, London, and Paris, with the Shanghai West Nanjing Road store, UNIQLO will establish a presence on Shanghai’s most prominent fashion avenue.

Often referred to as the “world’s development center,” Asia is the largest developing market in the world. Already referred to as the “Center of Asia,” Shanghai is the largest city in that market, and is now set to become the “Center of the World.” This energy and excitement serves as the backdrop for UNIQLO’s newest global flagship store. Through the Shanghai West Nanjing Road store, UNIQLO will share its brand message of quality, style, and value with the entire world.

The Shanghai West Nanjing Road store will feature 320 mannequins on 3 floors displaying the numerous ways to coordinate and combine UNIQLO’s fashions, the most of any global flagship. A glass case set in the ceiling of the main entrance will feature rotating mannequins displaying the latest merchandise.

The entrance from the subway will feature an atrium that opens across all 3 floors and a special display of “flying mannequins” moving from top to bottom, giving customers in the new store a fresh and unexpected surprise.

Shanghai Global Flagship Store
Shanghai West Nanjing Road Store Summary
Store name: Shanghai West Nanjing Road Store
Opening Date: Saturday, May 15th, 2010
Address: 969 West Nanjing Road, Shanghai (West Nanjing Road Station, Maoming Road North Entrance)
Shop Floor Area: 1,100 Tsubo (39,000 ft2) spread over 3 floors

Shanghai Global Flagship Opening Featured Items: Vast Selections of Polo Shirts, T-shirts, Casual Dresses, Jeans

Featured items at the May 15th opening will include the polo shirt, one of UNIQLO’s quintessential items. It will be available in 88 colors (a doubling-up of the number “8,” considered lucky in Chinese culture) for both men and women, including colors exclusive to the Shanghai Global Flagship Store. The quality and color variations of this item really capture the heart of what UNIQLO is all about.

Collaboration on sustainability initiatives

EARTHTEC, an innovative, eco-conscious company that turns recyclable plastic bottles into lifestyle apparel, has entered a partnership with the New Hampshire Fisher Cats minor league baseball team to collaborate on both EARTHTEC’s and the Fisher Cats’ commitment towards sustainability. EARTHTEC uses revolutionary technologies to break down and convert plastic water bottles into stylish, functional and long-lasting eco-apparel, as described in a recent segment on WMUR’s NH Chronicle.

Their staff is excited to show off their new eco-friendly EARTHTEC soft-shell jackets on
Opening Day, and can also proudly wear their recycled lifestyle apparel as a badge on
Earth Day as well, just one week later on April 22nd. The Fisher Cats are excited to join with other local organizations, like the University of New Hampshire, that have seen great results from their partnership with EARTHTEC. UNH and EARTHTEC recently combined on a green giveaway at a University of New Hampshire Men’s Hockey game, where EARTHTEC distributed 6,000 eco-friendly fleece hats to attendees. The Fisher Cats are looking forward to working with EARTHTEC as part of their ongoing efforts to become more eco-conscious.

“It’s great to know that organizations like the Fisher Cats and the UNH Wildcats are adopting and encouraging eco-friendly behaviors,” said Dennis Randall, Owner and CEO of EARTHTEC. “The feedback we’ve gotten as a result of the UNH hat giveaway has been tremendously positive, resulting in wonderful new relationships with other local sports teams like the Fisher Cats. We hope to extend our relationships to other sports organizations in New England and nationally, as we all try to do our part to help make our planet cleaner and greener.”

“We’re excited about our new partnership with EARTHTEC, and we’re pleased to share their earth-friendly practices, products and enthusiasm by simply wearing great apparel,” said Fisher Cats President/General Manager Rick Brenner. “Wearing clothes made out of recycled materials is a great reminder for us to strive to be as green as possible.”

The New Hampshire Fisher Cats, Double-A affiliate of the Toronto Blue Jays, is proud to serve the entire state of New Hampshire and Northern Massachusetts. Through extensive community outreach programs, affordable pricing and a first class entertainment experience at Stadium, the Fisher Cats have become New Hampshire’s premier outdoor entertainment destination.


Recall of Niko's SPORTSLINE children's hooded Sweatshirts

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, in cooperation with the firm named below, announced a voluntary recall of the following consumer product. Consumers should stop using recalled products immediately unless otherwise instructed.

Name of Product: Children's Hooded Sweatshirts
Units: About 3,200
Importer: GJC International of Florida Inc., of Plantation, Fla.
Distributor: Niko's SPORTSLINE, of Sunrise, Fla. (firm is no longer in business)

Hazard: The children's jackets have drawstrings through the hood which pose a strangulation hazard to children. In February 1996, CPSC issued guidelines (which were incorporated into an industry voluntary standard in 1997) to help prevent children from strangling or getting entangled on the neck and waist drawstrings in upper garments, such as jackets and sweatshirts.

Incidents/Injuries: None reported.

Description: This recall involves children's Niko brand hooded sweatshirts with drawstrings through the hood. The garment-dyed sweatshirts were sold in mango, kiwi, rust, denim, pink, brown and periwinkle and in sized 2T through 5T. A tag that reads, "Niko's SPORTSLINE" is sewn on the back neck of the garment.

Sold at: Gift shops, children's stores, souvenir and resort stores in Delaware, Florida, Louisiana, New Jersey, Maryland and Michigan from June 2007 through January 2008 for about $8.

Recall of Niko's SPORTSLINE children's hooded Sweatshirts

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, in cooperation with the firm named below, announced a voluntary recall of the following consumer product. Consumers should stop using recalled products immediately unless otherwise instructed.

Name of Product: Children's Hooded Sweatshirts
Units: About 3,200
Importer: GJC International of Florida Inc., of Plantation, Fla.
Distributor: Niko's SPORTSLINE, of Sunrise, Fla. (firm is no longer in business)

Hazard: The children's jackets have drawstrings through the hood which pose a strangulation hazard to children. In February 1996, CPSC issued guidelines (which were incorporated into an industry voluntary standard in 1997) to help prevent children from strangling or getting entangled on the neck and waist drawstrings in upper garments, such as jackets and sweatshirts.

Incidents/Injuries: None reported.

Description: This recall involves children's Niko brand hooded sweatshirts with drawstrings through the hood. The garment-dyed sweatshirts were sold in mango, kiwi, rust, denim, pink, brown and periwinkle and in sized 2T through 5T. A tag that reads, "Niko's SPORTSLINE" is sewn on the back neck of the garment.

Sold at: Gift shops, children's stores, souvenir and resort stores in Delaware, Florida, Louisiana, New Jersey, Maryland and Michigan from June 2007 through January 2008 for about $8.

Women more worried about their body image than men

The study published in the May issue of psychological journal Personality and Individual Differences, also showed that even healthy women or those without eating disorders have underlying concerns about their weight and react negatively whenever they see any overweight women.

The study by Brigham Young University showed when thin women were shown pictures of fat or overweight women and asked to imagine themselves like the image, their brain scans showed distress.

In recent times, being size zero is like a fashion statement especially for women. These women of all ages are flocking weight loss and slimming centers to attain their goal weight. This obsession with weight is medically termed as anorexia nervosa or simply, anorexia. This is a psychological disorder where the weight-obsessed women take their consciousness about weight to an extreme that may even lead to physical collapse.

Anorexia usually starts with the desire to look thin and have a super-trimmed body and under tremendous social pressure, this becomes an obsession.

Researchers Mark Allen, a BYU neuroscientist, grad student Tyler Owens and BYU psychology professor Diane Spangler came together on a long-term project to improve eating habits and to treat eating disorders by tracking progress with brain imaging technique. When anorexic and bulimic women view an overweight stranger, the brain’s self-reflection center, known as the medial prefrontal cortex, lights up in ways that suggest extreme unhappiness and in some cases, self-loathing. This clearly increases the pressure to become thin and leave the woman stressed.

The motivation for the study was to put forward a point of reference among a control group of women who scored better on eating disorder diagnostic tests. Women in this group were found to have “sub-clinical issues with body image.

When the same experiments were conducted over men to compare, the women’s brain activity was found much closer to full-blown eating disorders.

According to Spangler, women are bombarded with messages that perpetuate the thin ideal, and the barrage changes how they view themselves.

For many women, bodily appearance and being thin is important and their brain reflects to that idea. This increases the risk of eating and mood disorders.

Reference :

Levi’s brand grows worldwide

Levi Strauss & Co. announced financial results for the first quarter ended February 28, 2010, and filed its first quarter 2010 results on Form 10-Q with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

• Net income and net revenue grow
• Solid cash flow and liquidity
• Levi’s brand grows worldwide

Net revenues increased during the first-quarter, reflecting the continued growth of the Levi’s brand worldwide including the benefit of business acquisitions made during 2009. Revenue improvements were partially offset by revenue declines in the wholesale channel in certain markets. Quarterly net revenues were up 4 percent excluding the positive effects of currency.

The increase in first-quarter net income was largely driven by the effects of currency. The company reported a strong liquidity position including cash and cash equivalents of $315 million and availability under the company’s revolving credit facility of $193 million.

"We’re off to a good start for 2010 with revenue growth and our Levi’s brand performing well around the world,” said John Anderson, president and chief executive officer. “Our strategies are beginning to fuel top-line growth, with the acquisitions we made last year contributing to our overall revenue gains. We continue to invest in our business even as retail conditions remain challenging in many mature markets around the world, especially in Europe. These investments will put pressure on the bottom line in the near-term, but are essential to achieve our goal of sustained, profitable growth.”

First-Quarter 2010 Highlights

• Gross profit in the first quarter increased to $533 million compared with $445 million for the same period in 2009. Gross margin for the first quarter increased to 51.5 percent of revenues compared with 46.8 percent of revenues in the same quarter of 2009. The gross margin improvement reflected strong Levi’s brand performance, lower inventory markdown activity and increased contribution from company-operated retail stores, which typically generate a higher gross margin than the wholesale business.

• Selling, general and administrative (SG&A) expenses for the first quarter increased to $426 million from $339 million in the same period of 2009. Higher SG&A was primarily due to additional selling expenses related to the expansion of the company-operated retail network, higher advertising and promotion expense as the company increased support for its Levi’s and Dockers brands, and higher administration expenses associated with pension and postretirement benefit plans.

• Operating income for the first quarter was $107 million compared with $106 million for the same period of 2009. Higher regional operating income, resulting from higher revenues and gross margins, was offset by higher corporate expenses.

Leighton Meester at "Date Night" premiere in NYC

Maybe it's because we're used to seeing Leighton Meester super polished and posh on Gossip Girl every Monday night, but her look for the New York City premiere of Date Night, starring Tina Fey and Steve Carrell, was all over the place. The light and messy hair, ultra shiny skin and bright lips were overwhelming for Meester's classic beauty.

Meester's Giambattista Valli frock was bright and printed, two strong trends for spring. While we're happy Meester didn't resort to spray tanning herself orange, the colors washed her out and the cut of the dress was not flattering. Black cage booties were the only thing that looked good, but still heavy for spring. Note to Meester and stylist - it's spring! How about a gorgeous pink or coral frock and metallic extras?

Fila Korea makes visit to Polo Club of Boca Raton

Recently voted as 'The #1 Private Tennis Facility in the World', The Polo Club of Boca Raton was selected as one of only three retail locations in the U.S to host Fila Korea's CEO Gene Yoon and investors during their business trip to Miami, FL. "The Polo Club's facilities and operations are second to none," said Mickey Rivera, Fila Southeast Key Account Manager. "We've been working with The Polo Club since 1988, and have always felt that they exude excellence in all levels of Tennis operations."

"We were extremely honored to have been able to host the Fila Corporation and represent the Private Country Club Industry. We look forward to a future relationship with Fila," said Alex Raimondi, General Manager and COO of The Polo Club.

Since 1988, The Polo Club of Boca Raton has carried Fila apparel and accessories and has seen an ever expanding demand for their products.

"Our Members have built strong brand loyalty with Fila. We are seeing a growth, not just in Tennis, but with all their active wear," said Jean Mills, Director of Tennis Operations at the Polo Club. 

Hair color trends: 2010

Golden Blonde

Peroxide blonde isn't for everyone, but that shouldn't rule out blonde as a hair colour altogether. Enter mid-tone blonde for 2010.

Natural in its tones, golden blonde is the best way to describe it. Unlike peroxide blonde, it doesn't have the extreme white colouring nor should it be dyed to be obvious.

Red hair in 2010

The redhead isn't just a hair colour in 2010, it's an attitude. If it were a formula I could mix up in's offices it would end up 2 parts red hair, 2 parts personality, and 2 parts sexual confidence. Think model Coco Rocha as a redhead oozing of her playful, confident personality and you're somewhat there. Just add the bombshell sexual confidence, and you have it.

Red hair is perfect for the cooler months and if you're considering a changing your look for 2010, consider red hair as the perfect option for Autumn 2009 / Fall 2009 or Fall 2010.

City Limits golfers to wear Glenmuir Storm Bloc wind shirts

Glenmuir, the leading golf apparel brand and preferred supplier to the European Ryder Cup Team, has become the official clothing partner of City Limits Golf - the new driving range in the City of London.

Situated at the heart of London's financial district in Worship Street, the City Limits Golf range and N1 Golf Academy staff will be decked out in 'Howth' and 'Morar' shirts and sweaters from the Spring/Summer Men's Luxury range and 'Michelle' shirts from the Ladies shaped fit shirts range. For outdoor use,staff will wear the Storm Bloc(r) Pro and Storm Bloc Ace wind shirts.

Brian Mair, Glenmuir marketing director, said: "The agreement will put the Glenmuir brand in front of tens of thousands of workers in the City, a significant percentage of who play golf but until now have had no easy access to a driving range within the Square Mile itself.

"This is an exciting project and with plans for the centre to offer free golf to underprivileged children at weekends, we're very happy to be the official clothing partner."

The range has 16 bays on two tiers, overlooking astroturf with a netted perimeter and targets. Golf lessons are provided by PGA teachers from the renowned N1 Golf Academy, which coaches golf at 17 centres throughout the UK.

Phil Richins, sales and marketing director for City Limits Golf, said: "We're delighted to have such an established brand as Glenmuir on board as our clothing partner.

City Limits Golf is the only range in the City of London where golfers can actually hit balls down a range, not in simulators,so as a 'real golf' venue it is important for all our staff to look the part. "Working with a company which supplies shirts and knitwear to The European Ryder Cup Team will help establish us a premium teaching centre in the City."

Built on the site of a former Railtrack yard in Bishopsgate, City Limits Golf is next to the busy Broadgate Centre and just 250m from Liverpool Street Station.

Fashion accessories trend review with Lynne Curtin

District Bar hosted its first annual Fashion District event! It was evening filled with fashion, great music spun by DJ Rick Garcia, and fun celebrities. District bar is a contemporary Public House that prides itself on being a bar and lounge hybrid. Further demonstrating the ability to create blissful unions between fashion and service industries in Chicago they launched the innovative Fashion District Event.

The concept is simple and effective. The goal is provide an alternative way for stylish Chicagoans to experience fashion. For the kick off event, designer and star of Bravo’s The Real Housewives of Orange County , Lynne Curtin, hosted while presenting her own line of chic accessories.
Local designers Ashley Scott of Drapes, Lecrisha Sheilds of Reckless, and Kiwi Boutique also co-hosted the evening and presented their designs as well. Guests were invited to browse the latest designs and chat with the designers while enjoying half-priced bottles of wine and salads. They were even offered discounts for showing up in a vest or blazer for 10% off all non-special items.

That evening The Chicago Fashion Trends Examiner was able to have a sit down (well stand up really) conversation with Lynne Curtin of Bravo's reality TV, Show the Real Housewives of Orange County and talk about her latest accessories line. Lynne is definitely a larger than life personality, but she definitely has a huge heart! Her passion for fashion, girl power and rock and roll were all evident that evening and showcased within her designs

Spring/summer hats gallery

The sun is shining and the first few hints of summer are showing through. We know that many of you are sitting at your desks wishing you could bask in that sun (we're definitely wishing we were in a park with a picnic) and we're praying as much as you that the weather continues into the weekend.

However, with the sun comes spring/summer fashion and one trend which is going to be huge this season, is hats.
These appeared across the SS2010 LFW catwalk with designers such as Mulberry and Vivienne Westwood making straw and trilby hats a key focal point in their collections.

So we've decided to put together a gallery of the best summer hats out there, which will not only keep you looking on-trend but also last right through to your summer holiday.
Team up with cropped jeans, denim shorts and a ethical style tee for that casual summer look or dress them up with a maxi dress for nights out in a restaurant or bar.
Read more :

New Zealand Fashion Week set to celebrate 10th year

New Zealand Fashion Week will return in 2010 to celebrate its tenth year showcasing the best of New Zealand fashion to the world.

Dates are confirmed as Tuesday 21 September to Sunday 26 September.

New Zealand Fashion Week Managing Director Pieter Stewart is proud to have reached this milestone, with 2010’s event set to be a celebration of the hard work and fantastic opportunities New Zealand’s premiere fashion showcase has created across a decade.
“New Zealand fashion is such a fantastic industry to work in, with amazing talent existing throughout the country. When we launched New Zealand Fashion Week in 2001, we did so with a vision to create a platform that provides the best opportunity to showcase this talent to our own domestic market and more importantly to the world.

“As with any industry there are ups and downs, but the success stories that NZFW has helped create are many. In recent times the New Zealand fashion industry has been hit, like the rest of the world, by the effects of a global economic recession, but we’ve battled through and 2010’s fashion week is going to be a great opportunity to toast this country’s growing success on the world stage,” says Stewart.

Once again, the venue for New Zealand Fashion Week will be the Viaduct Harbour Marine Village on Halsey Street in Auckland.

Initial support from New Zealand designers has been encouraging, with many already confirmed their intention to show at this year’s Fashion Week.

Once again, New Zealand Fashion Week will be inviting buyers and media from around the globe, ensuring the developing Asian and Eastern markets are represented and exposed to New Zealand’s unique and exciting fashion talent. 

Pam Anderson

No one dares to bare more on the dance floor than Pam Anderson. Just when you thought her skirt could not go shorter, or her cleavage baring top lower, it does. That said, no one wears nude-colored fabric better than the original Baywatch Babe. Additionally, unlike some of her competitors (ahem, Kate, ahem...) Pam seems to have fun wearing each and every outfit out on the dance floor. Which, I think, epitomizes the kitschy fashion of the show. Essentially DWTS is a mostly a show about kind of bad dancing. But if you own the borderline bad outfits along with the bad dancing, you may walk away with that shiny, shiny trophy, and heck, you may have learned something.

What I've learned from watching is that if you wanna put some sparkle in your wardrobe, just do it. If you own a piece de resistance that could stand to be be-jeweled and bedazzled, go for it. We only live once, so we should wear what makes us happy--although, we may need to take a few ballroom dance lessons to compliment our sparkles.

French Connection opens largest free standing store in Bandra

French Connection, Britain’s leading hi-fashion brand, announced the opening of its largest free standing store on Linking Road, Bandra, the shopping hub in Mumbai, India. The French Connection store, spread over 2000 sq ft of shopping space will offer an unprecedented level of service for the fashion conscious consumers.

Commenting on this occasion, remarks Ms. Mansi Zaveri, Manager Marketing & Communications, “Since its launch in 2007, French Connection has provided the most edgy and fashion forward styles to the Indian consumer. This is set to be an important season for French Connection with our increasing retail presence supported by the launch of an impactful and intelligent campaign that enables us to speak to our male and female customers in a clever and effective way, whilst reaffirming our premium status on the high street”.

The store’s edgy yet sleek environment is spunky yet inviting, keeping the focus on the clothes. Wooden floors are offset by pure white walls and a play of direct and indirect lighting complement structural elements of the store.

French Connection at Linking Road introduces the Spring Summer 2010 collection; which is all about feminine tailoring in soft nudes contrasted against bold Hawaiian prints and stripes. Ladies can indulge themselves in summer styles with a dash of graphic florals creating a softer, vintage backdrop along with introduction of coloured hues – everything fresh and exciting ready for its first outingClean cut lines are juxtaposed against softer silhouettes in fluid fabrics. Exaggerated shoulders still play an important role, from all over embellished tops to fitted dresses.

Kellie Pickler No Longer Close Pals with Taylor.

Although the American Idol finalist turned country darling, 23, once told me she and Taylor were like sisters, they’re now barely acquaintances – even though the duo have been on the road touring together for a whole year.

“We both are even busier this year than last year,” Kellie admits during the Dressed To Kilt fashion show to benefit Friends of Scotland held Monday in NYC. “You really see each other backstage passing to go onto the stage, and that’s about it.”

"You look so pretty!" cries Kellie Pickler to Julianne Hough, as Taylor Swift bounces in with both serious and silly birthday gifts for Pickler (Jo Malone perfume—and pepper spray: "I don't have many friends, so I need to protect the ones I have!" exclaims Swift). Soon after, flowers arrive for Swift with a note from an admirer. "Ooh," Pickler and Hough tease. Swift, who's been quietly seeing Joe Jonas of the Jonas Brothers, blushes, and the three laugh.

Power your mp3 Player through your Fabric!

How would you like to power your mp3 player or cell phone through your apparel?

New age cotton threads have come up with many novel inventions that one cannot visualize. Just imagine if your apparel can power your cell phones or mp3 players! Amazing isnt it? Scientists have now invented a fabric that can conduct electricity, and can also be made into light. This fabric contains simple cotton threads that are coated with the magical wonder. Conductive cotton threads are used in place of conventional wires. These cotton threads are encrusted with a layer of semiconductor polymers and nano particles. This coating enables the thread to conduct electricity just like metal wires. Comfortable clothing!

Tiny solar cells are embedded in this fabric. During the day time these solar cells collect energy and store it in a device that is identical to a battery. The conductive thread is woven through the fabric which is used to make the garment, and is attached with the battery. Power for this thread is discharged through a USB device. The thread contains a simple knot that completes the circuit from energy storage to discharge. The thread will be a natural fibre and not a synthetic one. Simple knots in this thread are capable enough to complete a circuit. This charger will be capable enough to power a cell phone or an mp3 player.

Earlier technologies in the same field resulted in bringing conductivity to the fabric, but the fabric became very heavy and rigid. But this novel technology allows the cotton thread to remain flexible, and comfortable. Processing, weaving, and knitting the fabrics becomes an easy process. Thus it has outwitted the discomforts that prevailed in the earlier inventions.

The scientists behind this amazing invention assert that it is impossible to distinguish between an ordinary cotton thread and the conductive thread. They can twist, bend and drape in the same way just like any other ordinary fabric. The wearer will also feel the same.



London Home of Fashion Trends

London is always famous to be at the cutting edge of fashion. But a new research says that the girls in North Britain are far more glamorous than the London fashionistas.

The ladies from the places including Manchester, Leeds, Newcastle and Liverpool are quicker to pick up on the fashion trends, compared to the southern lasses. They are also up to date with the style and latest trends than those down the south.

Leeds in West Yorkshire kicked off the killer heels look where as Scousers from Liverpool, including the model WAG Alex Curran were among the most popular on the fake tan trends and wear the hair curlers out.

Glasgow girls were fastest to turn on the hair straighteners where as Geordies were the fake-eyelashes' trendsetters. Brummies had headed to wearing shorts the earliest and Cardiff girls were the earliest with the subtle lip glosses. The Essex girls were the early adopters of WAG style shades, while Bournemouth came up with pioneer push-up bras.

London gals generally have headed for the spark duller styles including the skinny jeans and 'the boyfriend look'. They were always the well-liked and attention grabbing fashion styles.

The figures emerged after Debenhams analysed sales from the past decade. "It is assumed trends start in London but northern cities tend to pick up on trends faster and wear them bigger and brighter,” says a spokesman.

Next-gen space suit revealed for Red Bull Stratos mission

History has been made as Red Bull Stratos unveiled the first space suit ever to be produced by David Clark Company for a non-governmental space program. The Red Bull Stratos science team has also revealed the pressure helmet, which with the suit will serve as Felix Baumgartner's sole life-support system when he steps off his capsule at 120,000 feet to attempt a record-breaking freefall from the edge of space.

This next-generation gear was manufactured by Massachusetts-based David Clark Company Incorporated, which has pioneered air and space crew protective equipment since 1941, including launch entry suits for Space Shuttle astronauts and the iconic suit that United States Air Force Colonel (Ret.) Joe Kittinger wore on his historic Excelsior III jump in 1960.

In the hostile stratospheric environment Felix plans to traverse, hazards include temperatures as cold as minus 56 degrees Celsius; an environment with too little oxygen to sustain human life; and air pressure so low that decompression sickness and ebullism -- a condition in which blood "boils" with life-threatening vapor bubbles -- are pervasive dangers.

During his ascent beneath a 30-million-cubic-foot polyethylene balloon filled with helium, Felix will depend on a sealed capsule to provide a pressurized environment; but once he depressurizes the vessel and opens the door to step off, his full-pressure suit and helmet -- what engineers call a "Pilot Protective Assembly," or PPA -- will be his only life-support system until he reaches the safety of the lower atmosphere.

By attempting to break the speed of sound in freefall, Felix will be trailblazing a velocity that future astronauts and aviators may have to face: although Felix will need to optimize his flight posture to achieve Mach 1, astronauts bailing out from significantly higher altitudes would likely attain supersonic speed involuntarily. Members of the Red Bull Stratos science team expect that the rigidity and protection of a full-pressure suit is necessary to provide benefits at such unprecedented speed, but effectively utilizing the protective assembly will also present challenges.

Monkey Clothing offers Luke 1977 spring/summer collection

Yorkshire's leading clothing retailer, Monkey Clothing, has been inundated in recent days after announcing that the spring / summer collection of Luke 1977 clothing is now in stock.

A full range of Luke 1977 jeans, jackets, polos, t-shirts and other accessories are flying off the shelves as the discerning male plans for the sunny months ahead.

The contemporary British label has become a particular menswear favourite in recent times, with its eminent working class appeal, distinct humour and irreverence for popular culture. The Luke 1977 brand is distinctly British in a number of aspects - the actual style of the brand itself is classic and understated in design with the overt British imagery in Luke's logo's such as the lion's head and the use of the Union Jack flag.

The brand has been hailed for its 'dresslexia' stance as a parody of dyslexia referring to people who seemingly get dressed in the dark; Luke 1977 is seen to be fighting in 'the dresslexic resistance'.

The rise in the stature of Luke 1977 has been boosted by celebrity clientele that prefer the Luke 1977 brand to many of the other designer menswear brands, including actors Stephen Graham and Jody Latham, footballers Jamie Carragher and David Beckham, Brit bands The Enemy and Kid British and England captain Rio Ferdinand. 

Brittany My Linh wins GUESS Design Challenge

GUESS and FIDM/Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising are excited to announce the winner of GUESS Design Challenge 2010, an exclusive competition created for graduating students in FIDM’s Advanced Fashion Design program.

Ten students had the amazing opportunity to design and present one denim-focused look each to GUESS executives, including Maurice Marciano, Co-Founder of GUESS?, Inc. Mr. Marciano personally selected the winner, Brittany My Linh Vu. She was offered the position of Design Assistant with the GUESS?, Inc. design department, as well as the opportunity to be involved in each step of the production process of her winning design, which will be incorporated into an upcoming season.

“One of our strengths at GUESS is keeping our brand relevant to the ever-evolving consumer and in order to do so, we must find young and innovative talent, such as the highly gifted students we are partnering with at FIDM,” said Maurice Marciano.

For many years GUESS has been one of FIDM’s industry partners, working closely with the fashion college’s Career Center to recruit students. “Today we have 74 graduates from FIDM working for us full-time in great positions. FIDM has been a well of creation and innovation,” said Mr. Marciano.

Online Intl Apparel Expo attracts sizable eyeballs

International Apparel Expo-2010 organized by fibre2fashion is a roaring success with the industry world over. This expo is being sponsored by some of the well known organizations like Raymond, Lectra, and Pearl Fashion Academy.

The event is rigorously and zealously promoted by renowned associations like WRAP, PRGMEA, and Sri Lanka Apparels. International Apparel Expo is a rising platform for the manufacturers and buying houses the world over.

The Expo was launched on the 1st of March 2010 and since then it has been sailing on the boat of success. It’s a sheer achievement and a moment of pride that within the 30 days of this expo being online, almost 250 “Unique Business Cards” were exchanged.

These 30 days can be termed as the glorious days for the event as buyers (Garment Importers, Retailers, and Buying Houses), from countries like USA, UAE, Portugal, UK, Spain, France, Mauritius and India have posted their inquiries. The Expo is doing well and is catering the business world with unique opportunity to meet the prospective clients and do lucrative business.

The event has attracted more than 40,000 global visitors and 911,586 page views have also been recorded, which again speaks volumes about the stupendous success of the show and its international appeal. International Apparel Expo-2010 is being referred to as a cogent platform for the international community of apparel buyers and manufacturers.

Commenting on the success of this event Ms. Chinky Raval, Business Development Manager, said “This is just the beginning and there’s a lot more in the kitty for the exhibitors and the visitors at the International Apparel Expo 2010". Further throwing light on International Apparel Expo she said that it’s all geared up to fulfill the ambitions and aspirations of the global apparel community.

International Apparel Expo-2010 is a vibrant platform for business and has an immense potential of drawing a great number of visitors, as it is already doing. The show is all set to redefine the concept of apparel shows. 

KLM introduces new ladies uniform

More than 11.000 female cabin attendants, ground attendants and pilots at KLM and KLM Cityhopper will don new uniforms.

The new uniform has a feminine cut, with a modern, fresh and confident look. “It’s great to see the wonderful outfit that has been created. I hope it will be worn with pride,” says KLM President & CEO Peter Hartman. The design is completely new, but the uniform is still the same KLM blue introduced in 1971. KLM is constantly seeking to innovate. This is borne out by the new uniform. “By introducing this new uniform in these challenging times, we underscore our faith in the KLM brand,” says Peter Hartman. The uniform was designed by Dutch couturier Mart Visser.

Research has shown that customers value the KLM brand because it represents typical Dutch pragmatism. KLM has responded to this by adding a touch of orange, the national colour, to its KLM blue. The orange features in the trimming on the lining of the uniform for cabin and ground attendants, and in the uniform scarf.

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