Donatella Versace and Miuccia Prada like to get together and eat paninis. Versace says the two Italian designers met at an event years ago in Milan and became fast friends.
"I made a joke and she started to laugh and she said let's go and get some paninis because we're starving… and off we went. We just talk, talk, talk. She's so inspiring. We make fun of each other and teach each other. She says, 'I could never make sexy clothes, but I love them.' And I say, 'Well, I love what you do.'"
Prada — who was a leftist and second-wave feminist while studying for her PhD in International Relations in the '70s — is on record as saying that feminism is dead in Italy. Versace, asked about her friend's remark, said:
"Feminism is dead in the world. It comes from another time. I'm a feminist. I want to fight, but I don't see many people with this desire to fight for something. Women don't help each other, especially in fashion. I know Miuccia… but that's it. Nobody else."
Schiaparelli may be a fashion house without a designer, but it is no longer a fashion house without a headquarters: this is what the soon-to-be-fully-revived brand's new Paris salon looks like. There's a chest of drawers shaped like a lobster and a Sphinx statue that adorned Elsa Schiaparelli's original offices. [WWD]
Here's Blake Lively's new Gucci perfume ad. [Fashion Copious]
This, starring male model Marton Dorfler, is Balenciaga's first men's wear ad campaign. [WWD]
In honor of couture week, Vogue has this slideshow of archival couture spreads. [Vogue]
"Haute couture is supposed to die since 1925," says Didier Grumbach, president of the Chambre Syndicale de la Haute Couture, when asked about the future of the business. "You'd be surprised to have extraordinary articles decrying the end of the artisanat, and as you see it's still existing and you are still interested. And wen you speak with some brands, they would never consider for one minute to stop the haute couture. So for me, haute couture will last forever." [Fashionista]
- Camila Alves is now the face of I.N.C., the Macy's house brand. She snagged the gig via somewhat unconventional means: "I had the team to my home in Austin, cooked some food and had some wine," says the model. Macy's, for its part, says it chose Alves for her "beautiful, multiethnic appearance." [WWD]
- There's a rumor that Carine Roitfeld is putting Kate Upton on the cover of her new magazine, CR Fashion Book. According to a "source," Carine thinks of Upton as her "new Lara Stone." Roitfeld was instrumental in taking the Dutch model's career to another level in 2007, when she was still the editor-in-chief of Vogue Paris. But Upton doesn't exactly have Stone's high-fashion look (or her years of experience working in markets around the world). And does Roitfeld, stripped of her editorial perch, still have that kind of power? [Fashionista]
- "The superrich are still superrich," says Ralph Toledano of Puig, the majority owners of Jean Paul Gaultier and Carolina Herrera, among other brands. The couture shows opened today in Paris, so let's learn about the tremendous gains many companies are making in their couture divisions. Revenues at Jean Paul Gaultier rose 23% year-on-year with his last (Amy Winehouse-inspired) collection, after rising 28% year-on-year from 2010 to 2011. Dior couture is going so strongly that its parent company, Louis Vuitton Moët Hennessy, just bought one of its key suppliers: the embroidery company Maison Vermont. Chanel, meanwhile, had "our best year ever in couture," according to president Bruno Pavlovsky. The company hired 10 new skilled employees for its atelier last year. Valentino executive Fabio Mancone says of the movement towards buying $70,000 dresses, "I believe it stands for so much more than mere wealth, and so has an appeal that is more on par with works of art than expensive, trend-driven clothing. I actually believe that at the moment, in spite of the economic troubles, couture is enjoying something of a revival, as people focus on authenticity and heritage as key values when considering a purchase." [WWD]
- Tilda Swinton is going to do a fashion show-cum-performance at the Galliera museum in Paris this September. The actress will walk up and down a runway while carrying some 50 archival garments, including items worn by Wallis Simpson and modern Yohji Yamamoto designs. Interesting unrelated tidbit: over 13,000 new garments are presented at the big four fashion weeks (New York, London, Milan, and Paris) each season. [On The Runway]
- Nordstrom says its planned Manhattan flagship will be seven storeys tall — the tallest Nordstrom ever — and will open by 2018. [WWD]
- Jade Jagger got married this weekend in a vintage-inspired dress she designed herself. Kate Moss's daughter Lila Grace was a flowergirl, and Bianca Jagger was the chicest mother-of-the-bride ever. [Grazia]
- Jockey underwear is entering into a partnership with Rachel Zoe. This fall, certain Jockey items and shapewear will carry "Preferred by Rachel Zoe" hang-tags. [WWD]
- Revlon spent $22 million to buy the beauty brands Pure Ice and Bon Bons. [WWD]