The heat is rising on Shopbop's Summer event. The retailer just added a slew of items to its sale, and trust us — you're going to need your credit card. With designers like 3.1 Phillip Lim and Matthew Williamson accounting for the majority of items marked down, there's not a bad apple in the bunch.
Congratulations are in order for a group of young designers including Joseph Altuzarra, Bibhu Mohapatra, and Wes Gordon, all of whom are in the American finals for the 2014 International Woolmark Prize.
The group of finalists, which includes seven other design houses, will compete for the opportunity to go up against designers from Australia, China, India, and Europe in Milan next year. One American designer will be selected to represent the United States this July, when the 10 finalists present competition collections made with merino wool.
The prize for breaking through the other finalists and into the last round of competition is $100,000 toward that designer's next collection; the international prize is another $100,000, plus the opportunity to sell the winning collection in stores all over the world.
A look at who else is in the running, here in the gallery.
>> Ohne Titel's latest collection is black and white like you've never seen before. Trippy patterns — on jackets, skirts, and dresses — play tricks on the eyes for a bit of graphic illusion worth experiencing. Color was kept to a minimum, silhouettes were slim, and accessories came in the form of cowl scarves and quirky, equestrian hats. Standout looks included a black-and-blue colorblock pantsuit and a sheer-sleeved motorcycle jacket.
>> Amongst the alligator belts and cuffs — complete with horned scales, in some cases — was a much more commercial collection for Ohne Titel's Alexa Adams and Flora Gill. "We're trying new things, but doing it our way," Adams confirmed. The season's firsts included their first shoe collection — woven leather flats and heels; a first print — custom knit herringbone; and a foray into eveningwear. But those fans of the label's body-hugging knits need not dismay: They were present in pencil skirts, cropped pants, and cardigans, in tomato red or royal blue.
>> The CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund judging committee — which this year includes Jack McCollough, Lazaro Hernandez, Vogue's Mark Holgate, Jeffrey Kalinsky of Jeffrey and Nordstrom, CFDA executive director Steven Kolb, Reed Krakoff, Andrew Rosen, Diane von Furstenberg, Jenna Lyons, and Anna Wintour — have determined the 2011 finalists. They are:
AA, Antonio Azzuolo
Altuzarra, Joseph Altuzarra
Carlos Campos, Carlos Campos
Creatures of the Wind, Shane Gabier and Christopher Peters
Cushnie Et Ochs, Michelle Ochs and Carly Cushnie
Finn Jewelry, Soraya Silchenstedt
Fenton/Fallon, Dana Lorenz
Ohne Titel, Alexa Adams and Flora Gill
Suno, Max Osterweis and Erin Beatty
Joseph Altuzarra and Pamela Love are repeat finalists from last year, and Ohne Titel was a finalist in 2009. The winner and two runners-up will be announced Nov. 14.
>> V founder Cecilia Dean has a penchant for super high heels and the body-conscious designs of Ohne Titel, but she also likes to keep it real. When asked what piece of clothing she could not live without, she replied: "There is no one piece of clothing I literally could not live without. Let's not be dramatic." And for the past year, she's been living in Brooklyn's Red Hook neighborhood with her restaurateur boyfriend David Selig, where she has a small flock of chickens that each produce an egg a day, a garden growing everything from tomatoes to kale to edible flowers, and two beehives on the roof that provide honey year-round. [Harper's Bazaar]
>> Greg Kessler is an old pro at shooting the backstage swarm. Now that the first half of New York Fashion Week is through, he's amassed quite a stack of snaps — and we got a choice few. Among the moments captured: Anja Rubik having a quiet moment alone pre-Wang with her Blackberry, Prabal Gurung's model powwow, gratuitous shoe shots from Ohne Titel, Abbey Lee Kershaw still in her street style, and more than a few models goofing off. Gallery from backstage at Alexander Wang, Doo.Ri, Altuzarra, BCBG, Prabal Gurung, Richard Chai Love, Jason Wu, and Ohne Titel, at left.
Ohne Titel's Floral Gill and Alexa Adams Are Feeling Alaia-Like Knit Skirts and Neoprene Tops for Spring 2011
>> Flora Gill and Alexa Adams say that their Fall 2010 collection resulted in a 300 percent jump in sales for Ohne Titel, but they're still attracting the art fashion crowd that has been with them from the beginning: pre-show, Cecilia Dean, wearing an Ohne Titel dress, tucked away a bicycle helmet into her bag, while Olivier Zahm arrived half an hour late — just after a curtain was dropped at the entrance — still stuffing change from a cab ride into his pocket. Carine Roitfeld, who's attended the past couple of seasons, was nowhere to be seen, however (It seems she had not yet arrived, as she was first spotted this morning at Derek Lam).
For Spring, Gill and Adams were inspired by the Japanese woodblock artist Utagawa Kuniyoshi — thanks to a Japan Society exhibit earlier this year — and sent out neoprene tanks (which will apparently be special order-only), Alaia-esque knit dresses with flared skirts, and oversized tailored vests, all on a womanly cast of models: Catherine McNeil, who opened, Cameron Russell in her first and only appearance so far this week, Emanuela de Paula (who hasn't walked a Fashion Week since Fall 2007), and Lakshmi Menon among them. The designers, who collaborated with the artist Tauba Auerbach on lucite and elastic-banded jewelry — marking her first time as a jeweler — also premiered their first handbags.
>> Hanne-Gaby Odiele, Ohne Titel, and Casting Director Natalie Joos Among Paper's 2010 Beautiful People —Paper has released its annual Beautiful People issue; among the fashion contigent are photographer and Rodarte collaborator Autumn de Wilde, casting director Natalie Joos, Hanne-Gaby Odiele, Calvin Klein model David Agobodji, Prabal Gurung, Ohne Titel, Milk Studios' Mazdack Rassi and wife, Marie Claire fashion editor Zanna Rassi. Among the tidbits gleaned: Alexa Adams of Ohne Titel's great-grandfather was Al Capone's tailor. [Paper]