Meet Fashion Superstar Tomo Koizumi

Born in Japan in 1988, Tomo Koizumi‘s interest in fashion began from watching his fashion-loving mother in his childhood. His encounter with the book «John Galliano for Dior» in his early years was a very eye-opening event and made him decide to become a fashion designer. He has no formal fashion training and studied fine arts in his hometown Chiba, which is close to Tokyo, but has always had a passion for fashion, getting his hands on every fashion magazine he could.

It only felt natural, that he launched his own brand TOMO KOIZUMI successfully in 2011, after a boutique owner became interested and picked one of his dresses – which he created while he was a university student. He started as a stylist and costume artist assistant, before moving on to his next career step, becoming a costume designer. In February 2019, his very first runway show took place in New York with the support of the world-famous super-stylist Katie Grand, who discovered his works on Instagram, Marc Jacobs, and KCD Public Relations, Inc.

Koizumi came to show his rainbow fantasy gowns at her friend, and long-time collaborator, Marc Jacobs’ Madison Avenue store during New York Fashion Week for F/W 2019 and it became one of the most talked about shows of the seasons. Two of his pieces were also exhibited at the MET museum and the museum bought one of his works for its permanent collection. In April 2020, he was finalist and joint winner pf LVMH 2020 prize. Bright colors and bold silhouettes are the signature of his made-to-order collections and costumes, that international celebrities and artists love.

Thailand-based fashion editor and entrepreneur Nichapat Sop Hap wore one of Koizumi’s designs to the Met Gala in 2019.

Lady Gaga in Tomo Koizumi in 2016

You won’t find Tomo Koizumi’s voluminous pieces in stores. He is not interested in creating for retailers. Instead, he prefers to produce one of a kind creations. Star-studded clientele includes: Lady Gaga, who wore one of his designs on a visit to Tokyo in 2016, Katy Perry and Miley Cyrus. Therefore you will be very excited to read about his collaboration with Emilio Pucci in my next post that is available now!

LoL, Sandra

Photos: © Tomo Koizumi and by WWD/Shutterstock

Leonard Paris Appoints Georg Lux

Leonard Paris is pleased to announce the arrival of Georg Lux, the Maison’s newly appointed Creative Director.

Graduated from the Modedesign school Lette-Verein of Berlin, Georg Lux joined Ecole de la Chambre Syndicale de la Couture Parisienne, where he successfully achieved his studies. In 2011, he was appointed by Tara Jarmon who also entrusted him with the responsibility for her Bal Edition line and the illustration of her collection books.

Georg Lux

Georg Lux’s talent for sublimating the silhouette with elegance and femininity will be supported by the Leonard studio, with whom Georg will share a fresh vision of the House’s exceptional heritage. He will develop sustainable ready-to-wear collections in close collaboration with the best craftsmen, at a time when taking time is essential.

Leonard Paris is determined to offer the opportunity to a young generation of designers to share their design vision, whilst preserving the heart and essence of a well-established brand with solid values.

Leonard Paris S/S 2020 Campaign

«I am honored and delighted to be able to work with talented craftsmen with exceptional know-how. I am looking forward to continuing to carve the history of Leonard, inspired by its exceptional heritage,» comments Georg Lux.

Nathalie Tribouillard

«We are very pleased to work with Georg to continue to win over Leonard’s devotees across the globe. His work at Leonard comes at a turbulent time, but one that heralds an extremely demanding post-crisis period, full of hope for reinventing our French craftsmanship around digital technology and respect for our planet», comments Nathalie Tribouillard, Maison Leonard CEO.

Georg Lux’s first collection for Leonard Paris is Pre-Fall 2021, and his first presentation for the French Maison will take place during the upcoming Paris Fashion Week on March 5th 2021.

LoL, Sandra

Photos: © Leonard Paris

Rest in Peace Pierre Cardin

French couturier Pierre Cardin died at the age of 98 on December 29, 2020 in Paris. He became famous for his 1960s-era avant-garde and Space Age looks, pioneering fashion ready-to-wear and the fashion licensing system. He sold everything from cars, perfume to food with his name and maintained that he built his business empire without ever asking a bank for a loan. This made him rich but also diminished his brand’s reputation at the same time.

In 1995, quotes from WWD included «Pierre Cardin—he has sold his name for toilet paper. At what point do you lose your identity?». However, the Cardin name was still very profitable, although the indiscriminate licensing approach was considered a failure. All these things that we know today, Armani hotels, Cartier chocolate, Dior Vespas, Gucci sunglasses is based on the imagination of Cardin. He was a marketing genius and saw this endless merchandising potential at a very early stage.

A scandal: He presented his first ready-to-wear collection for women in 1959 at Printemps departments store in Paris.

Spanning a 60-year career, Cardin was the first designer to sell clothes collections in department stores in the late 1950s. «It’s all the same to me whether I am doing sleeves for dresses or table legs,» a telling quote on his website once read. His competitors criticized him for destroying the notion of luxury which didn’t affect Cardin at all.

Dior’s famous New Look success created by Christian Dior and Pierre Cardin.

Born Pietro Cardin on July 2, 1922 near Venice to French parents of Italian descent, he was educated in the not-so-glamorous French city of Saint Etienne. From an early age, he was interested in dressmaking, starting work at age 14 as an apprentice even though his father wanted him to become an architect. He moved to Paris in 1945, where he studied architecture and worked with the fashion houses of Paquin and Elsa Schiaparelli. A year later, he joined the then-unknown Christian Dior who rose to fame with his 1947 New Look collection.

The famous bubble dress in 1954.

In 1950, he founded his own fashion house and only four years later, he introduced the iconic «bubble dress», a short-skirted, bubble-shaped dress made by bias-cutting over a stiffened base. He was the first couturier to turn to Japan as a high fashion market when he travelled there in 1957. That same year, he was expelled from the Chambre Syndicale for launching a ready-to-wear collection for the Printemps department store as the first couturier in Paris to do as such, but was soon reinstated. In 1966, he resigned himself and began showing his collections in his own venue, the «Espace Cardin» (opened 1971) in Paris, formerly the «Théâtre des Ambassadeurs».

Pierre Cardin in 1970 in front of the Espace Cardin.

He also blazed a trail outside France long before other fashion multinationals in search of new markets. In 1979, he went to China to presented a collection when it was still largely closed to the outside world. And only two years after the Berlin Wall came down, in 1991, he staged a fashion show in Red Square in Moscow before 200,000 people, a first in Russian history.

In 1975, Cardin opened his first furniture boutique on the Rue du Faubourg Saint-Honoré. His furniture designs were highly inspired by his fashion designs. In both 1977 and 1979, he was awarded the Cartier Golden Thimble by French haute couture for the most creative collection of the season.

In 1974 he became the first couturier to be on the Time magazine’s cover. He was 52 at that time.

In 1975, Cardin opened his first furniture boutique on the Rue du Faubourg Saint-Honoré. His furniture designs were highly inspired by his fashion designs. In both 1977 and 1979, he was awarded the Cartier Golden Thimble by French haute couture for the most creative collection of the season.

Maxim’s restaurants are part of Cardin’s portfolio.

In 1981 Cardin bought Maxim’s restaurants in 1981 and soon opened branches in New York, London, and Beijing. A chain of Maxim’s Hotels (Palm Springs, California, 1986) were included in the assets. He also licensed a wide range of food products under that name.

Palais des Bulles

Like many other designers today, Cardin decided in 1994 to show his collection only to a small circle of selected clients and journalists. After a break of 15 years, he showed a new collection to a group of 150 journalists at his bubble home in Cannes, the so-called Palais des Bulles, woven into the cliffs on one of the most exclusive strips of the French riviera.

Pierre Cardin and Pierre Courtial in February 2020

For his latest venture in February this year he teamed up with Pierre Courtial, 27, who unveiled a collection at Cardin’s studio on Paris’s chic Rue Saint-Honore, with pieces that echoed some of the veteran designer’s geometrical aesthetics.

Pierre Cardin in 1950

«I’ve always tried to be different, to be myself,» Cardin told Reuters. «Whether people like it or not, that’s not what matters.» He also defended his zeal for licensing in an interview with the Wall Street Journal: «I don’t want to end up like Balenciaga and die without a nickel – then, 20 years after I’m dead, see others make a fortune from my name.»

Rest in Peace Pierre Cardin!

LoL, Sandra

Photos: © Pierre Cardin

Gabriela Hearst Is Chloé’s New Designer

Today, the House of Chloé has already announced its new designer after Natacha Ramsay-Levi’s exit was announced last week. It is no other than Uruguay-born, New York–based designer Gabriela Hearst, whose eponymous extremely successful label turned five this year.

Gabriela Hearst’s famous It-bags have been successful from the beginning.

While Ramsay-Levi’s designs were much appreciated by industry insiders, the brand’s heat with consumers, especially in terms of It-bags, cooled under her reign. That might be one of the reasons why Gabriela Hearst has been chosen. She is bringing a track record of success with handbags. Her iconic «Nina» style has been a huge hit from the beginning, followed by models such as «Patsy», «Diana» and «Demi». These bags are all highly sought after and trying to get them is almost impossible with extremely high waiting lists.

A true rancher by heart: Gabriela Hearst  

Gabriela Hearst grew up on her family’s 17,000-acre ranch, Santa Isabel in Paysandu, Uruguay, surrounded by horses, cattle and sheep, where the notion of luxury meant things were beautifully crafted and made to last. Her approach to «slow and conscious luxury», which is defined in her craft-forward aesthetic and focus on sustainability might be the other reason for being Chloé’s lead candidate.

Chloé’s new CEO Riccardo Bellini

CEO Riccardo Bellini, who joined from Martin Margiela in late 2019, who welcomed Hearst in a statement this morning. had already indicated in an interview with WWD last month, that Chloé was seeking B Corporation certification for its social and environmental performance and was creating an advisory board to hold the company accountable.

Hearst’s first runway show for F/W 2017 was produced to have as low as an environmental impact as possible, and from there her commitment to the issue has only grown. Now, she opts for eco-friendly fabrics and chooses to use recycled yarns whenever she can.

Power couple: Gabriela and Austin Hearst

Hearst’s lead investor is her husband, publishing heir Austin Hearst, whom she married in 2013. She opened her first store in New York in 2018, followed by another in London the following year, and made her Paris Fashion Week debut in September. In 2019, LVMH Luxury Ventures, an investment arm of LVMH, took a minority stake in Gabriela Hearst, making it the only American brand other than Marc Jacobs in which the global luxury conglomerate is invested.

My two favorite looks from the Gabriela Hearst F/W 2020 runway.

I am loving her cashmere knitted pieces. Incredibly soft and each piece has a tag where you can explore its garment journey. Stay tuned for many outfit posts coming up! Honestly speaking, I am truly looking forward to seeing her at the helmet although I liked Natacha’s designs a lot.

TO SHOP GABRIELA HEARST ONLINE, CLICK HERE PLEASE.
icon

Gabriela’s first collection for Chloé will be presented next March. All the best, I am sure it will be different and fabulous!

LoL Sandra

Wearing Gabriela Hearst dress and Nina bag

Photos: © Sandra Bauknecht and © Gabriela Hearst
DISCLOSURE: We may earn commission from links on this page, but I only recommend products I love. Promise.

Chloé’s Natacha Ramsay-Levi Steps Down

On December 2nd, I was invited by Net-à-Porter to join a live event hosted by Alison Loehnis, President of NET-A-PORTER and MR PORTER and Natacha Ramsay-Levi, Creative Director of Chloé to discuss the S/S 2021 collection. I was so keen on it and hoped to make it on time as the moving company was still unloading my boxes. However, all of a sudden I received a message in the morning of the 2nd that due to Natacha Ramsay-Levi being unwell, Net-à-Porter was regrettably cancelling the event with Chloé. Today, I found out why Natacha was not feeling well.

She is stepping down from her role at the Parisian luxury leather goods and apparel brand owned by Richemont after only 4 years. A new creative director was not named yet.

«Over the last months of health, social and economic turmoil, I have thought about the changes I want to see in our industry and how to better align them with my own creative, intellectual and emotional valuesMs. Ramsay-Levi said in her statement. «It is this reflection that makes me consider my future differently and desire to pursue new opportunities.»

Me wearing some of Natacha’s key looks for Chloé

Personally speaking, I truly liked Natacha’s vision, who worked as a key deputy of Nicolas Ghesquière during his time at Balenciaga and during his early seasons at Louis Vuitton, as it was a less commercial take on the house’s bohemian and very feminine codes. However, what had been driving the most sales at Chloé previously, were all the It-bags under previous designers like Clare Waight Keller and Hannah MacGibbon, that have been lacking recently. Even that the collections were broadly well received by fashion lovers, they were ultimately lacking in strong-selling items unfortunately. Sometimes, it drives me nuts that people don’t understand the greatness of some pieces and that they opt for mainstream.

TO SHOP THE CHLOÉ F/W 2020 COLLECTION, CLICK HERE PLEASE.icon

LoL, Sandra

Chloé F/W 2020 finale

Photos: © Chloé and © Sandra Bauknecht
DISCLOSURE: We may earn commission from links on this page, but I only recommend products I love. Promise.

First Designer Medical-Grade Face Masks

Great news, the first luxury fashion designer has launched custom-print unisex medical-grade masks, the same kind doctors and nurses wear in the hospital. Peter Dundas has transformed what is typically in a shade of icy blue into something fun, and insisted on black straps instead of white. In vibrant florals and animal prints plucked from his runway collections, the face masks are extremely soft and comfortable to wear, much better than the usual medical-grade ones we know.

«We’ve always wanted to be a feel-good brandDundas said to Vogue. «I truly believe our colors and patterns make you happier. They light up your life like a bouquet of flowers. Wearing a mask and hiding your face is a challenge, and if we can make people feel better about it, that’s a good thing.» I couldn’t agree more.

Peter Dundas with me

Dundas sat at the helm of Roberto Cavalli, Emilio Pucci and Emanuel Ungaro, before he gave fans what they wanted by launching his own eponymous label. He made the announcement in such a cool yet unconventional way, debuting his first designs with three custom-made looks for Beyoncé at the 2017 Grammy Awards. Created with partner Evangelo Bousis, the brand is inspired by the duo’s travels and the glamorous, jetsetting women in their inner circle.

After placing an order on dundasworld.com, the face masks arrived the next day from Italy. They will also launch on Amazon Fashion in the coming weeks. A pack of 50 masks costs €85.

He and Bousis are also donating boxes to children’s hospitals, the Art of Elysium, and the LGBTQ Center in New York, so health care workers and patients alike may have a little dose of that Dundas glamour all love! Bravo!

LoL, Sandra

Stills: Courtesy of Dundas, Photos: © Sandra Bauknecht

Kenzo Takada Dead From Coronavirus

During Paris Fashion Week, the fashion industry has been mourning the loss of French-Japanese designer Kenzo Takada, who died yesterday at the age of 81 from complications from COVID-19 in a hospital in Neuilly-sur-Seine, near Paris.

«It is with immense sadness that KENZO has learned of the passing of our founder,» the fashion house said in a statement. «For half a century, Mr Takada has been an emblematic personality in the fashion industry — always infusing creativity and color into the world

KENZO S/S 2021 with designer Felipe Oliveira Beptista in the middle

It was only days ago that the Kenzo fashion house unveiled its bee-themed collection for S/S 2021. «His amazing energy, kindness and talent and smile were contagious,» said KENZO’s artistic director, Felipe Oliveira Beptista, who released the new range to us fashion editors. «His kindred spirit will live forever

The Kenzo F/W 1982 collection was a huge inspiration for the Kenzo x H&M collaboration.

Kenzo Takada brought Japanese fashion to the world, he planned to stay in Paris for six months but stayed 56 years. Born in 1939, he grew up with six siblings near the Japanese city of Himeji where his parents owned a hotel. His love for fashion developed at an early age, particularly through reading his sisters’ magazines. He studied at Tokyo’s Bunka College of Fashion, which had then just opened its doors to male students. After that he had a brief stint working in Japan before relocating to France in 1965.

The mayor of Paris, Anne Hidalgo, tweeted that the city was «morning one of its sons,» saying the designer had given space to color and light in fashion.

KENZO collections from the ’80s and early ’90s

When I think of KENZO, I think of happy fashion with his colorful graphic and floral prints, jungle-infused designs and free-spirited aesthetic that channeled global travel. He was hugely popular, both for his high fashion and luxury day-to-day streetwear.

KENZO street style hype in 2012

The designer sold his brand to LVMH back in 1993 and stepped away from the brand 6 years later to pursue a career in art. «Kenzo Takada has, from the 1970s, infused into fashion a tone of poetic lightness and sweet freedom which inspired many designers after him,» said LVMH chief, Bernard Arnault.

«My work was always about freedom and harmony,» Kenzo Takada once said. «I’d like to be remembered as a designer who crossed boundaries.» Rest in Peace – you will surely be remembered like this!

LoL, Sandra

Sporting KENZO in 2016, click here for the outfit post.

Photos: © KENZO and © Sandra Bauknecht

Kim Jones to Design Fendi’s Womenswear

Breaking news from LVMH this morning, Kim Jones will join Fendi as artistic director for womenswear collections. In his first substantive foray into womenswear, he will oversee haute couture, ready-to-wear and fur. The designer will continue in his role as artistic director at Dior Homme, another LVHM-owned Maison.

I loved Kim’s first Dior Homme campaign for S/S 2019: shot by the legendary Steven Meisel, models were posing in relaxed tailoring. 

Previously, Jones worked as menswear director at Louis Vuitton, before he moved to Dior’s menswear in 2018 where he invigorated the House by mixing sports and streetwear references with skillful luxury tailoring. Jones even reinterpreted some of the iconic pieces like the Bar Suit for men. Born in 1973 in Hammersmith, London, he is a graduate of Central St Martins College of Art and Design. He was raised in Kenya, where his father worked as a hydrogeologist. Throughout his childhood, he also traveled through Ecuador, Ethiopia, Tanzania, and Botswana, and brought this wanderlust into his adult life. He claims to have visited Japan «around 70 or 80 times

Celebrity friend: David Beckham wore a Dior Homme suit designed by Kim Jones for Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s wedding.

Jones knows the industry from all angles. As well a being a designer, he’s worked as a stylist and art director for Dazed & Confused, Arena Homme+, Pop, AnOther, T: The New York Times Style Magazine, 10 Men, V Man, i-D, Numéro Homme, and Fantastic Man.

While streetwear’s and activewear’s presence in the luxury fashion sphere might seem normal these days (especially during the recent pandemic), it hasn’t always been the case. However, Kim Jones was one of the first designers to preempt the merge.

Karl Lagerfeld with Silvia Venturini Fendi

With the death of Karl Lagerfeld last year, Fendi lost its designer of more than 54 years. This was the longest time ever, a designer had reigned at a fashion house. Silvia Venturini Fendi, who had stepped into Lagerfeld’s role in the interim, will return to focusing on accessories and menswear collections, Fendi’s statement said.

Punk meets couture: Dior Homme’s ad campaign for F/W 2019

«Kim Jones has continuously proven his ability to adapt to the codes and heritage of the LVMH houses while revisiting them with great modernity and audacity,» said Bernard Arnault, Chairman and CEO of LVMH, the luxury conglomerate that owns both brands.

According to Fendi, Jones will present his first ready-to-wear collection for the label in the F/W 2021 during Milan Fashion Week in February, that will hopefully take place.
Are you ready for the next level of FENDIMANIA?

LoL, Sandra

Photos: © Fendi / Dior

Thank you, Mary!

This morning, I woke up to the cutest message on Instagram. My beloved Mary Katrantzou had dedicated a post to me and named me among her #MaryMareMuses.

Her new capsule collection is capturing the same high-octane colors and whimsical spirit as her main line, Mary Mareicon is her playful take on vacation dressing, from swimsuits and accessories, to amazing cover-ups and dresses all are inspired by different sun-soaked destinations like the French Riviera, Portofino and the islands of Greece.

Wearing Mary Mare: World Oceans Day – Mary Mare.

I feel so honored to be named among her #MaryMareMuses. It was love at first sight when I spotted a dress from Mary’s first collection. Since then I have been collecting her amazing and dreamlike creations. We met the first time in Switzerland ten years ago when she won the Swiss Textiles Award and since then we have been friends. Our birthdays are just two days apart and we are both aquarius women. We had so many beautiful und fun moments together. I will never forget the chills I had during the S/S 2020 show at the Temple of Poseidon in Greece last year. Below you can enjoy a trip down memory lane, of 10 years of great friendship!

November 2010: The day we first met. Mary had won the Swiss Textiles Award and I was already a big fan of her work. My blog was just one year old.

November 2011: We had lunch in London and one week later Mary won the Emerging Talent Award (ready-to-wear) at the British Fashion Awards.

January 2012: Me wearing the famous Jewel Tree dress for the launch event for the «Mary Katrantzou for Longchamp» collection at Colette in Paris.

March 2012: Mary and I played dress up in Paris that day and I literally tried every single piece from the fabulous F/W 2012 collection. Those pieces are still among my all-time favorites in my closet.

March 2012: Mary and I at lunch in Paris where she answered the first travel insider I have ever had on my blog.

September 2012: Mary and I at Anna dello Russo’s Paradise Ball in Paris.

January 2013: In the Paris showroom to have a closer look at Mary’s S/S 2013 collection.

March 2013: Exploring Mary ‘s F/W 2013 collection in her Paris showroom.

July 2014: Dinner with Net-à-Porter in London

February 2017: UBS Unique event in London

February 2017: A closer look right after the show at Mary’s F/W 2017 that took place at Tate Modern.

June 2017: At Waddesdon Manor for the launch of Creatures and Creations.

February 2018: Backstage at her F/W 2017 runway show in London.

October 2018: With Mary and Eugenie Niarchos at Matchesfashion in London for Mary’s 10 Year Anniversary Party.

October 2019: The evening before Mary’s most beautiful S/S 2020 show in Greece.

October 2019: In front of the Temple of Poseidon with Erica Pelosini right after the show celebrating our dear Mary.

Thank you, Mary, for 10 years of great friendship! Thank you or always inspiring me and for making Sandra‘s Closet so much more colorful! To many more years to come…

LoL, Sandra

 Photos: © Mary Katrantzou and Sandra Bauknecht
DISCLOSURE: This post may contain affiliate links, meaning when you click the links and make a purchase, we receive a commission.

adidas Originals Teams Up with Angel Chen

For S/S 2020, adidas Originalsicon teams up with one of the hottest rising stars in the global fashion scene, China’s very own Angel Chen.
Comprised of four new footwear styles, each available in two colorways, this capsule collection channels a sophisticated yet eye-catching aesthetic capturing Chen’s unmistakable way through bold and colorful graphics.

Angel Chen

Angel Chen is quickly becoming one of the brightest creative talents to emerge from China’s nascent fashion scene. The name behind the brand, Angel Chen, moved to London at the age of 17 to study at the prestigious Central Saint Martin’s College of Arts and Design.

During her placement year, she interned for Marchesa, Vera Wang and Alexander Wang in New York. Following her graduate collection in 2014, Chen was chosen by i-D as one of five designers-to-watch and launched her eponymous label the following year. She listed within BOF 500 in 2017, secured a finalist position with the renowned Woolmark Prize in 2018 and participated and placed 4th in Netflix’s Next in Fashion in 2019.

Angel Chen’s colorful approach to fashion coupled with a core-concept of fusion of Eastern
and Western aesthetics has made it a noticeable bright young label. This remains the case with each new collection she puts out under the eponymous brand founded in 2014, which she describes as «innovative, colorful, unrestrained and expressive.»

These four words could equally be applied to Angel Chen’s first team up with adidas, which takes the form of four new footwear styles. Each is presented in two colorways and, in their brightly playful execution, channel the mood and look of 80s and 90s fashion.

The capsule collection draws inspiration from Chinese calligraphy while celebrating China’s successes and cultural reasonance in sports such as Ping Pong, Kungfu and Diving. Each bold style features colourful contemporary graphics and exaggerated silhouettes.

Angel‘s newly gained international recognition resulted in highly anticipated commercial
collaborations for Angel Chen with H&M and M.A.C.; and most recently with adidas Originals. Stocked internationally at 70 retailers, including Bergdorf Goodman, Selfridges, Lane Crawford, Net-A-Porter and Galeries Lafayette, Angel Chen is part of a new wave of young brands
making an impact globally.

LoL, Sandra

Photos: © adidas Originals
DISCLOSURE: We may earn commission from links on this page, but I only recommend products I love. Promise.