Madonna has plans to someday "do" a men's fragrance, at the urging of her daughter Lourdes. "She likes to wear cologne — don't ask me why," the star explained at the New York launch of her first perfume. "I love musk and amber and woody kind of fragrances on men. I love the smell of whiskey — we should make a men's cologne that smells like whiskey. I can't drink it, it's too strong, but it smells amazing — a really good old whiskey." Madonna says she "worships and adores" Jean Paul Gaultier. "He's creating one of my costumes, and kind of godfathering the costumes for a section of my show, with all my dancers. I'm really happy he's doing it, because he's such a genius." She says the rest of the costumes for her upcoming tour will be by Arianne Phillips, her longtime costume designer, plus some pieces from Riccardo Tisci at Givenchy (who costumed Madge's Superbowl performance). Speaking of which, Madonna says next time she does an extravaganza like that, she may wear — gasp — sneakers: "The dance that LMFAO does, the shuffle, was really hard to do in heels. I have to say, I would prefer to do the shuffle in sneakers. If you want to drop it like it's hot, it's good to wear flats, because then your booty gets really close to the floor." [WWD]
Legendary New York Times street-style photographer and documentary subject Bill Cunningham started out as a millinery designer — and on Wednesday, 23 of the hats he made in the '50s and '60s under the label William J will go on sale at 1stdibs.com. Cunningham showed some archival photos of his hats to Times readers last year. [ WWD]
Seminal fashion photographer of the '40s, '50s, and '60s — and a pioneering woman in the field — Lillian Bassman is the subject of a solo gallery show on now in New York City. According to her daughter, Bassman led something of a charmed life: "Quirky things used to happen to her. She would land in Paris and for some reason there would always be a duke or a count who would want to show her around town. She would always say ‘Why are they giving me so many flowers and so much Champagne?' I remember she did the lead show of a Spanish photo fest at The Prado in 2002, and Queen Sofia of Spain, who always wore gloves so she wouldn't have to touch anyone's skin, suddenly appeared and then her staff disappeared. The Queen walked next to my mother discussing the photos as if they were old friends." Bassman passed away at age 94 in February. [ WWD]
In these new Yves Saint Laurent beauty ads, Anais Pouliot sure is wearing a lot of makeup for a swimming pool. [ Fashin]
Fashionista tracks the progress of seven of spring's most-photographed runway looks. If the Vogues and Harper's Bazaars of this world have their way, we'll all be wearing bedazzled bodysuits (preferably either by Prada or Dolce & Gabbana) this season. [ Fashionista]
- "Editors will fight for the same looks," says Elle's Kate Lanphear. "And those are usually the opposite of what a retailer will select. Retailers are there to protect their customers, and to respond to what those customers want. Editors are reporters. I know when a look is important, whether or not it reflects my personal style. My job is to make people dream, and to get them excited about dressing in a new way." [DFR]
- Women's Wear Daily has a solid piece on the hot 2012 trend of fashion IPOs — and the pros (cash money!) and cons (disclosure laws!) of going public. In the past year, Prada went public (and now has a market capitalization of over $16 billion), Michael Kors went public ($8.9 billion), Ferragamo went public ($3.4 billion), and Brunello Cucinelli's IPO is fast approaching. However, some public companies are going private, like J. Crew (which made the switch last year) and Kenneth Cole (which is still mulling the change). And many fashion companies — particularly smaller ones — are simply not ready for an IPO or the scrutiny that comes with it.
"Institutional investors are looking for exponential growth across sectors, and this is something you can sell via fashion, in particular with emerging markets," says Laurent Feniou, a managing director at Rothschild in London. "You don't see many successful IPOs from fashion companies because there is a sweet spot, which is a mix of a very strong financial profile and an exciting brand. The two need to go hand in hand. People will jump into the [profit and loss statement] to start with, and if they're excited by the p&l, they'll say, ‘OK, what is the brand?'"
- Karlie Kloss was photographed at Coachella with her arm around a remarkably fratty looking dude, who turns out to be a quarterback for some outfit called the St. Louis Rams. The Midwestern-born model was previously rumored to be dating actor Eddie Redmayne. [JustJared]
- Tommy Hilfiger is opening an 11,000 square foot Tokyo flagship this week. [WWD]
- Remember Prince's brief, ill-fated foray into life as a celebrity parfumier? It resulted in one scent, 3121, which Prince failed to promote with contractually obligated in-store appearances and press interviews. As a result, the fragrance flopped, and following a lawsuit, Prince now owes the ex-licensee £2.5 million in damages. [Sun]
- In other news, Will.I.Am is now the defendant in a $2 million lawsuit over his alleged reneging on a deal for a clothing line. [Vibe]
- The U.S. branch of sourcing and production giants Li & Fung — whose recent investment in formerly indie label Vena Cava appears to have saved the latter from insolvency — is said to be in talks with Marchesa to do a lower-priced line. [WWD]
- The guy who formulates Chanel nail polish is not just a chicken who lays an egg, Karl, so please stop asking. "There's really no logic," says Peter Philips. "I observe and listen to women, and then I follow my heart and my guts. It's not a factory. I'm not a chicken that lays an egg. I just try to seduce women into discovering something they want. Because if they don't like it, they won't wear it." [T]
- H&M says its same-store sales rose by a healthy 16% year-on-year during the month of March — the chain's biggest increase in over three years. [WWD]
- Better Capital has acquired the troubled brand Jaeger London in a £19.5m deal. [Telegraph]
- Brunello Cucinelli's IPO roadshow is on the road, and it looks as if the company's shares will be priced at $8.87-$10.20, which would value the company at $532.3 million-$611.2 million. [WWD]
- And now, a moment with Alber Elbaz. Alber, how did it feel for Meryl Streep to wear one of your dresses to the Oscars?
"The seamstress that made the dress worked for three days and three nights on the dress, and after she finished, she was sick for three days. And you know, with the Oscars, you do the dress and you never know if they will wear it. I wanted so much for [Streep] to wear it, just for this woman that didn't go to sleep for three days, and just put so much love into the dress."