Archive - August 2010

Carmen Steffens Fall Launch-Fashion Square Mall
Project Light Fashion Show
Kao Pao Shu Showroom Grand Opening

Carmen Steffens Fall Launch-Fashion Square Mall

The luxury Brazilian accessories brand, Carmen Steffens launched its Fall Collection at the Westfield Fashion Square in Sherman Oaks. Why Sherman Oaks…you ask? Carmen Steffens wants to appeal to everyone, not just celebrities or Beverly Hills clientele. They want to reach out to those who love fashion but can’t necessarily afford the Louboutins, Manolos or YSLs. Carmen Steffens pride themselves as being a brand that only carries one size or handbags that may only have one for the entire US market. The brand sets the highest standards to make sure that their focus is on style, exclusivity and comfort. Especially comfort. The shoes are made with a composite or rubber sole that allows people to walk on hard floors with ease (and I was told that that’s why their stores have marble floors and not carpeted floors…to demonstrate how comfortable it is when trying out the shoes). When trying on the platformed shoes myself, I too, believed in the Carmen Steffens comfort… I felt a difference when walking around and loved the way the shoe had a slight upper curvature that I believe would help to relieve the bulk of the pressure at ball of the foot. Prices to own a Carmen Steffens piece range from: $150-760 for shoes/boots, $190-850 for handbags and $180-190 for wallets.

Special Thanks: J, Michael Shane of Gorgeous PR, Mark Willingham- President of US Operations, the helpful sales staff of the Fashion Square Carmen Steffens store- 14006 Riverside Drive, Sherman Oaks, CA 91423.

NOTE: Along with the slide show of pix from the event, Michael was kind enough to give me the link to the CS virtual fashion show. They reinvented the fashion show by making it mostly animation but the CS products are not animation. Enjoy!

Project Light Fashion Show

Pasadena’s Ambassador Auditorium was the setting for the Project Light Fashion Show- in accordance with the Project Light Arts and Entertainment Conference. The show featured two musical performances by the Groovaloos and singer, Hope; plus four designers and was hosted by E!’s “How Do I Look” host-Jeannie Mai and Father/Son Pastors: Gabe and Che Ahn.

Designs by Danielle Kelly featured deconstructed tops and barely-there mini dresses by celebrity designer Danielle Kelly. Danielle launched her career in 2003, working for the brand popular for their trucker hats- Von Dutch. Her designs are sought-after by Christina Aguilera, Alicia Keys and Brittany Spears just to name a few. The finale dress Danielle wore onstage was amazing!

IDNYC featured pieces from Brazilian-born designer, Isabelle Donola’s “Reborn” collection, which you can read more about here. I really admire her use of New York and European aesthetics, color and structure and the fact that she uses recycled fabrics.

Designer Shalanda Jarrett showcased her new sustainable men’s line- Shay J. Her “eye” for fashion began when she was little. She would complain to her Mom  that her Barbies didn’t have enough clothes. Her Mom then gave her the advice that would put her on the path to fashion- she should make the clothes herself. She chose to lead a more eco-friendly lifestyle because [being in the fashion industry] she has made the startling observation that labels (big labels at that) would just go through their resources “like its toilet paper.” As well as a friend of hers who was living green. She chose to do a mens wear line because, “there is more room for textile manipulation…It is easier (for me) to design mens wear because it is easy to please men when it comes to their wardrobe.” I could tell by the quality and uniqueness, that Shalanda has keen eye for mens fashion and I hope to see her line in the stores, especially the clear jacket!

Lastly, designer June Kim featured her new haute couture line, CHIUHN. Usually inspired by Chanel, this new line, however took on a different direction with inspiration from her childhood drawings. Her line took on a Parisian theme with many fabrications: suits, lace with two-tone shade silk satin, pure silk dresses accentuated with fur, sheer feminine laces with flowers and hand-embroidered with jewels and pearls, beaded cocktail gowns with fur… I saw hints of Chanel in the suits and Marie Antoinette in one of the dresses.The line was beautiful and June achieved her goal of the line having the fairy-tale romance and whimsical aesthetics. CHIUHN is one of three lines by June under the company- Queen Esther Enterprises.

Special Thanks: J, HRock Church, The Ambassador Auditorium, the designers, performers, model casting coordinator- Rowel Salvador, the models of Models and Design, all the volunteers and staff, Jeannie Mai, pastors Che and Gabe Ahn.

Kao Pao Shu Showroom Grand Opening

Emerging brand Kao Pao Shu held their showroom grand opening in Santa Monica. The showroom is housed in a converted 5000 sq. ft. warehouse. It was a bustling evening, filled with shopping the collection, getting your portrait taken by Kao Pao Shu designer Naida’s husband-Marco, watching a live photo shoot with models styled by Studio DNA Salon and stylist- Devon Poer; and enjoying hors ‘d ouvers. I viewed the collection of tops, skirts, dresses and handbags made from the signature ribbons, webbings and fabrics found around the world. I had the delightful opportunity of meeting the brain behind the designs- Naida Begeta, born in Bosnia and graduated from the Sarajevo Academy of Fine Arts with a degree in product design. All her pieces are manufactured here in the US and are a hit in Japan (I can even see hints of Japanese influence in her avant-garde creations). I also watched as the four models got styled in couture make-up by Studio DNA Salon and after getting styled by Devon Poer, were escorted to the makeshift photo studio that was set up in a corner of the warehouse. It was exciting seeing the live photo shoot taking place and the incredible energy from the photographer, models and guests.

Kao Pao Shu showroom is located at: 1906 Olympic Blvd. Santa Monica,CA 90404. Ph:(310)453-1919. Hours: Monday – Friday 9:30am-6.30pm or Saturday by appointment.

Special Thanks: J; Francesca Albanese- Marketing Manager at Kao Pao Shu; Naida Begeta; Photographer- Marco Schillaci; the models: Chelsea Freeborn, Diana Butova, Sabrina Setarah, Morgan Blimendane; stylist: Devon Poer; Danny LeClair and the hair/make-up team at Studio DNA Salon; the volunteers and DJ.

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