>> Miuccia Prada recently talked about how she felt that one of her contributions to fashion was the idea of going retro: "One thing I did in my work was to go back to different eras . . . it was happening back in the '80s and I think I was one of the first to do it. In the beginning, it was not even thinkable, so it was difficult, but now it is still in fashion, that kind of retro stuff." That concept must still be on her mind, because she sent out a Cruise 2010 collection today full of brightly colored vintage prints.
Miuccia Prada was interviewed by CNN's Talk Asia and spoke about wader boots, the Italian stock exchange and how she went to mime school for six years. ..
A few new names have made it onto the Men's Fashion Week roster including Tim Hamilton and Alexis Mabille.
H&M's uptown opening called for shopping and drinking by a good number of pant-less partygoers.
>> CNN Asia sat down with Miuccia Prada in Seoul recently for her first TV interview in three years, putting together almost 25 minutes worth of footage. They got the shy designer to talk about everything from hating "the cliche of fashion designers" to the stress of the job to her view on the acquisitions of Jil Sander, Alaia, and Helmut Lang — but unfortunately missed out on asking her about the lack of diversity on the runways.
In the first clip, Prada talks about her design philosophy:
Basically I think that sometimes [my designs] look strange and not perfect because I don't like things that are obvious, and so I always try to introduce something that is wrong, something that is different. Just beauty by itself is too easy.
It's very much about what I like, but also [about] analyzing what's trendy and why people like something and trying to find an ironic way to look at it from outside. For instance, when I did the lace [for Fall 2008], I asked why women always like lace. [I] try to analyze the reason this is something [women] like at the moment [and] try to understand why things like pink roses, lace, animalia . . . women can't give up.
>> The months-in-the-making 60 Minutes profile of Anna Wintour finally aired last night, and besides the tired Devil Wears Prada and unauthorized biography references, a snarky Morley Safer provided a candid look at "Darth Vader in a frock" — except for the instances when she purposely evaded his question. He even asked her if she thinks of herself as a b*tch: "I hope I'm not . . . I try not to be, but I like people who represent the best of what they do and if that turns you into a perfectionist than maybe I am."
She laughs when asked if it's true that Vogue staffers are not allowed to speak to her on the elevator:
Oh yeah, I heard that, you're not allowed to get in the elevator with me. That's a complete exaggeration. I guess in response I can only say that I've have so many people here that have worked with me fifteen, twenty years, and if I'm such a b*tch they must really be a glutton for punishment because they're still here.
She credits part of her success to her failures elsewhere: "I wasn't academically successful and maybe I've spent a lot of my career trying to make up for that." But she's still the Anna whose daily hair and makeup bill, plus a rumored $200,000 annual clothing allowance, is all picked up by Conde Nast — and her view of "reasonable" clothing prices reflects that. She visits Alexander Wang's showroom for a runthrough, and as a silver sequined minidress passes by, she asks Alexander how much it is. "This one retails for $1,200." Her reply? With a little smile: "It's very reasonable."
But designers can irritate her: "If you see a collection that you feel the designer has been lazy or is taking inspiration from other designers, it doesn't as much as bore me as anger me."
Even Andre Leon Talley, one of those figures who have been at Vogue for years, feels the Wintour chill:
It's not like a tea party here, we work very hard. Let's say that Anna can be intimidating, I think that's her armor, to intimidate, to give people a sense that she's in charge. She is not a person who's going to show you her emotions ever. She's like a doctor. When she's looking at your work, it's like a medical analysis. Some of us can't cope with that . . . we need to be loved.
But it's something to get used to — if Anna has any say, she'll be sticking around a while longer. "To me, this is a very interesting time to be in this position, and I think it would be, in a way, irresponsible not to put my best foot forward and lead us into a different time." Morley prods, asking her if when the time comes, she'll go quietly? She smiles. "Certainly, very quietly."
>> ON THE CAMPAIGN TRAIL —While a horse of Steven Klein's caused Madonna injury over the weekend, another Steven — Steven Meisel — worked with a horse last week for one setting of the "marathon" four day Prada Fall 2009 campaign shoot at Pier 59 Studios in New York. No confirmation on which models were involved, but a number of unconfirmed sources are indicating four girls — Kendra Spears, Anna De Rijk, Katlin Aas, and Miuccia Prada's current favorite, Ymre Stiekema. [Chic Report, TFS, TFS, TFS]
>> Miuccia Prada closed out the Fall 2009 runway season with a Miu Miu show about "playing with the bourgeoisie.” Necklines plunged to reveal nude bras, fur sashes draped across the chest and covered ankle straps, bare flesh shimmered, and socks were heavily sequined. The collection seemed more grown up than Miu Miu's recent forays into harlequinism or scuba gear, with its tapestry patterns, but perhaps most striking were the half-coats, with undone buttons or cutout backs.
>> Paris Fashion Week starts tomorrow, but fashion folk couldn't leave Milan without hitting up the Palazzo della Ragione last night for one last Milanese shindig, courtesy of Anna Wintour, Domenico Dolce, and Stefano Gabbana. The launch for the "Extreme Beauty in Vogue" exhibition — which Anna selected 89 images for — the party was likened to the Milanese equivalent of the Costume Institute Gala; in other words, the week's hottest ticket. Karl Lagerfeld made a beeline for the photos after mugging for a few cameras, while Anna was trailed by 60 Minutes's Morley Safer and Carine Roitfeld by CNN: “I am being followed round all the shows, and they are doing lots of interviews. But you won’t be seeing me naked.” Miuccia Prada sported one of her new Fall 2009 gladiatorial dresses, and rounding out the fashion wattage a troika of supermodels: two we see quite a bit of (Claudia Schiffer, Eva Herzigova) and one we do not (Nadja Auermann).
*image: source, source