Michelle Dashes CFDA's Hopes; Mr. Gunn Goes To Washington

  • Michelle Obama will not attend the CFDA Fashion Awards, despite the fact that she is receiving the CFDA's Board of Directors' Special Tribute (an award they made up especially for her). [WWD]
  • A few months back, Peaches Geldof obligingly posed for a News of the World paparazzo while frolicking topless in St. Tropez. (The things you must do for cash in this economy!) Lingerie brand Ultimo noticed the shots, and offered Peaches six figures to be its new face. Which is why there are now pictures of the 20-year-old noted Nylon correspondent lying on a table in her underwear, surrounded by cupcakes and milkshakes, and giving quotes about how it's better for her to model lingerie than "an anorexic model." Tell that to the Photoshopper, doll. [Daily Mail]
  • Supposedly, despite the global financial crisis and the recession it has spawned, the Chinese are still buying luxury goods. Either that, or the AP found the one lady in Beijing who can still afford Dior. [AP]
  • Lanvin and Kate Spade, however, see business opportunities in Japan. (Have they read any economic news out of Japan recently?) [WWD]
  • Donatella Versace went to the White House Correspondents' Dinner — her second — and reflected on the differences between the last administration and the current one. (The Obamas made sure to have "cool" Hollywood people, not "stiff" Hollywood people, at their party, for one.) Then she met Colin Powell, who is apparently her "hero." [HuffPo]
  • Tim Gunn was also in Washington, D.C., this week — as a lobbyist. The CFDA sent Gunn, along with Project Runway Season 5 winner Leanne Marshall, to talk to politicians about the recently re-introduced Design Piracy Bill, which would extend copyright protection to clothing. (At the moment, images printed on clothes can be copyrighted, because they're considered artwork, and an exact pattern can be copyrighted, but all the other distinctive design features of a garment can be legally copied by any manufacturer.) Gunn was soon besieged with questions from Hill staffers about how to spruce up their outfits. [NY Observer]
  • This fall, you too can smell like Akon. In two different ways. [WWD]
  • Katy Perry: "Usually, I'm trying to look like a party." [People]
  • If you care about Gossip Girl, which I hear is a television show people watch, sometimes, then perhaps you would like to read this article about how, during the soap opera's 80s flashback scenes, the characters dress in clothes. From the 80s. [WWD]
  • Suzy Menkes — writer of that terrible story on the "African" fashion trend — thinks blogs are great. But that they get things wrong. No argument there! But since when are newspapers any different? A commenter on this story promptly identified an error in a four-year-old piece Menkes wrote for the New York Times. [The Cut]
  • If you wear a size 16 in Ann Taylor or Ann Taylor Loft clothing, after this spring — wait, that's, like, right now! — you'll need to go online to find it. The company says they will no longer stock size 16 in stores because of lack of consumer demand, which seems awfully fishy when you remember that 70% of American women are a size 12 or above. Ann Taylor thus joins Banana Republic and J. Crew in selling size 16 only online. [Crain's]
  • Jenna Lyons, the creative director of J. Crew, comes across as the kind of person who thrives under stress in this interview. [Fashionista]
  • The inaugural Ellen Tracy intimates collection will be available in stores this December. [WWD]
  • Betsey Johnson is into designing a diffusion line for Target or "whatever it's called." HSN, QVC, Topshop, H&M — anything, really, she swears. Call her. Please. [The Cut]
  • Zaha Hadid for Lacoste shoes look like a rubber octopus with a foot fetish. [WWD]
  • Puma's sales actually increased 3.6% in the first quarter of this year, but its overall net income fell 93.8% on figures from two years ago. [WWD]
  • Troubled retailer Abercrombie & Fitch is taking over a 4,300 square foot space on Manhattan's Fifth Avenue — only three blocks south of its current flagship store. Hickey Freeman, the menswear store, is forced to close its old flagship at 666 Fifth because of the bankruptcy of its parent company, Hartmarx, and Abercrombie is apparently only too happy to take it over. [WWD]
  • John Varvatos — the designer who made CBGB's a store selling $2,000 jackets — just laid off 12 people, or 4% of his workforce. [WWD]
  • Scientists at Virginia Tech have created a fabric that can measure the speed, motion, and direction of its movements, and transmit those data to a computer. Science is magic, guys. [Advanced Imaging Pro]
  • A makeup artist for The Bold And The Beautiful thinks women will go for putting her own special brand of concealer on their feet to hide corns and calluses. To which I say: Why not do that with the foundation you already own, should you feel such a step be necessary? And: Makeup smudges on my lovely shoes? No thanks. The brave ladies of The Cut road-tested the execrable product. Warning: click only if you want to see pictures of feet before lunchtime. [The Cut]