Ladies, Tom Ford Would Do You Too

  • Artist John Currin interviewed Tom Ford, and joked that sometimes innocent statements are "The small acorn that will grow into a great oak of a scandal later." Well! Ford then claimed, "I'm one of the least materialistic people that exist."

The full quote is: "As an adult working in the fashion industry, I struggle with materialism. And I'm one of the least materialistic people that exist, because material possessions don't mean much to me. They're beautiful, I enjoy them, they can enhance your life to a certain degree, but they're ultimately not important." Ford is never one to shirk his responsibilities to provide the press with "controversial" soundbites. On women: "I lust after beautiful women. First of all, I love women. But I lust after beautiful women in the way that I lust after a beautiful piece of sculpture — this will probably get me in trouble — or a beautiful car. I believe everyone's on a sliding scale of sexuality. There are moments where I am sexually attracted to women. But it doesn't overpower my first impulse; my lust for them is the same as my lust for beauty in all things. It's not like I ever think, 'Oh, my god, I've got to spread her legs and fuck her.'" And: "I think gay men make better designers." And: "In our culture, we use female nudity to sell everything. We're very comfortable objectifying women. Women go out and they are basically wearing nothing. Their feet and toes are exposed, their legs are exposed, their breasts are exposed. Everything is exposed — the neck, the arms. You have to be really physically perfect, as a woman, in our culture to be considered beautiful. But full frontal male nudity challenges us. It makes men nervous. It makes women nervous." [Interview]

  • Vanessa Hudgens replaced Britney Spears as the face of Candie's. The shiny, shiny face of Candie's. [ETOnline]
  • Heidi Klum's new television show involves playing pranks on children. [People]
  • Emmanuelle Alt says Vogue Paris under her leadership will be "the same but different." She continues: "French Vogue today is a successful magazine and it has a strong identity, so it will probably stay along the same lines. But, I mean, some things will change of course, because we have a different eye." [Telegraph]
  • Meanwhile, Carine Roitfeld was spotted having drinks with Balenciaga's Nicholas Ghesquière — the two had long been thought to be fashion nemeses, after Ghesquière stopped inviting Vogue Paris editors to his shows or lending the magazine samples and Roitfeld wrote about it in her editor's letter — for the second time in a week. [@DerekBlasberg]
  • More from Miuccia Prada, on why we shouldn't expect a Prada for H&M anytime soon: "I don't like the idea of a bad copy of what one does for the main brand. If I had an ingenious idea to do fashion that costs less but that wasn't a bad copy of something else, with completely different criteria and ways of doing things, I would do it." And besides, "When things cost very little, you need to ask yourself how and where they were made." True. But that's a question one should ideally ask of everything one consumes — not just the cheap stuff. Prada also says you shouldn't, as a designer, "banalize what you do" and become a caricature. "It's clear that Chanel is known for the little jacket and Vuitton for the LV. And us? Nobody really knows what we are, which is fortunate. Because I try to resist making a banal product." Prada also advances an argument about why luxury products are so expensive: "Luxury products are costly because the companies…manufacture in Europe, produce with salaries that have to be paid. You have to pay for everything that is needed to do research etc., etc. It's clear that these things cost money. It's not like the owners of luxury brands make enormous profits. Probably the [mass market players] earn much more." That line of reasoning is dubious; for one thing, it hardly explains why Prada's shoes that cost about $400 new in 2000 cost about $900 now. And for another, Dana Thomas uncovered evidence in her excellent book De-Luxe of Prada and other luxury companies either manufacturing high-margin accessories in China and shipping them to Italy for minor final stitching so that a "Made in Italy" tag could be affixed, or working directly with lower-wage Chinese immigrants in Italy, something which supplants established local suppliers. Prada also says of contemporary art, "There are more museums and foundations than there are artists. Everybody wants the genius of the moment but there aren't all of these geniuses." Through its foundation, the Prada company is a major patron of the arts. [WWD]
  • Samuel Taylor Coleridge once stayed in the home now owned by Kate Moss. [Curbed]
  • Diane Von Furstenberg, the president of the Council of Fashion Designers of America, and Dr. David Herzog, a specialist in eating disorders, have written an open letter about models' health ahead of New York fashion week, reiterating the CFDA's "recommendation" that designers not book models under 16 for runway work and not keep models working past midnight. "Many in the fashion industry are concerned about the vulnerability of models and are trying to make a difference," they write. "Plans for education and awareness programs are under way, such as an Ambassador Program aimed at helping young models develop the tools to meet the challenges they face." What this means in practice remains unclear. [CFDA]
  • Keira Knightley says she found shooting her first ad for Chanel "frightening." Not because of the fact that Knightley was Photoshopped into an uncanny plastic-fantastic replicant version of herself, but because she didn't know how well she'd sell for the brand, and wanted her ads to be a success. [Vogue UK]
  • Karl Lagerfeld says his very, very pastel haute couture collection was inspired by Marie Laurencin, the painter and printmaker and muse of Guillaume Apollinaire. "Not so much the shape, or clothes she wore," he explains, "more the colour, the fragility; soft, light." [Telegraph]
  • Erin Fetherston is discontinuing her main line collection and introducing in its place a lower-priced line in the "contemporary" sector of the market. Pieces will wholesale for $73-$250, and the new line will debut at New York fashion week. [WWD]
  • Somewhat unusually, Pedro Almodóvar sat front-row at Chanel's haute couture show, as well as Armani's and Christian Dior's. [The Cut]
  • Janelle Monae earned one new fan with her performance at the Etam show: Karen Elson. "She's incredible, she's like a female Bobby Brown," enthused the model, whose own debut album was reviewed widely and well last year. "She commanded the stage." [WWD]
  • Jean-Paul Gaultier's spring campaign featuring Karolina Kurkova and her male double, Andrej Pejic, is out. The two are both styled in women's clothing and they are kissing. [DS]
  • This just in from Cathy Horyn: Gaultier's couture show featured Pejic in the finale, dressed as the bride. Kurkova also modeled, along with Catherine Deneuve and Farida Khelfa. [@CathyHorynNYT]
  • In other news of fashion and its current fixation on androgyny, Lea T. will film her Oprah segment next week — just after opening a swimwear show at Sao Paulo fashion week. T., who's had top surgery and takes hormonal therapy but hasn't had her bottom surgery, posed nude in Vogue Paris last year. (Definitely one of the gutsiest photos we ever saw Roitfeld publish.) [@JasonFarrer]
  • Givenchy, the brand Lea T. got her start modeling for, presented its latest couture collection on an all-Asian cast of models. The clothes were inspired by Kazuo Ohno. [Style.com]
  • Two spring campaigns happen to feature models from Tanzania: Topshop booked Flaviana Matata, while Herieth Paul features in Diesel's ads. [FashionJuunkii]
  • Miu Miu hired Zoe Cassavetes to film a short web ad. It is the first in a series of Miu Miu-sponsored shorts from young women directors. [Fashionista]
  • Today in Misleading Headlines, "Natalia Vodianova's Addiction." Meth? Pickled herring? Solitaire on the computer, alone late at night? No — it's charity work. Improving the lives of others is a real compulsive behavior that interferes with her ability to live a normal life for Vodianova. [Vogue UK]
  • Susanna Lau of Susie Bubble explains how she makes a living blogging. Does she earn more running her own site full-time than she did when she was at Dazed & Confused? "Definitely. Each day I'm sort of dividing my time between four or five different things. The result of that is that you are gong to be getting more money than you are with a fixed wage at an independent publishing company." Lau was recently featured in a Gap campaign, and she earned a sum reported to be in the low five figures for simply setting up a boutique on Google's Boutiques.com. [BoF]
  • The last quarter was good to Coach. Income was up to $303.4 million from $241 million a year ago. Year-on-year, sales rose 18.7% to $1.26 billion. [WWD]
  • Wet Seal is selling a t-shirt printed with the slogan, "IF YOUR SINGLE, <3 SO <3 AM I." When asked about the error on Twitter, the brand responded, "It's a fashion statement ... I am jealous for you're keen eye for grammatical errors though." The New York Daily News's attempt to get offended by this wanton disregard of proper English is undermined somewhat by a caption identifying the shirt as being sold by "Weal Seal." [NYDN]
  • A new Louis Vuitton embellished minaudière costs $35,000, or about as much as a pair of cuff-links at noted anti-materialist Tom Ford's men's store. [Racked]