This election cycle, Urban Outfitters is selling a variety of ("ironic") Mitt Romney t-shirts, in case you feel the need to broadcast your affinity for the MittBott3000 and his policies with a screen-printed rebus of an oven mitt. The chain also offers a couple Ron Paul styles ("Legalize Everything" — except abortion!) and one Obama shirt, but it seems clear given company co-founder and chairman Richard Hayne's well-publicized right-wing leanings where his sympathies lie. [BuzzFeed]
Isabella Rossellini appears on the cover of the new Vogue Italia. [Fashin]
From the department of This Thing Looks Like That Thing: did whoever styled the cover of Brazilian Glamour's June issue totally rip off the styling of French Glamour's November, 2011, cover? [Made in Brazil]
Cathy Horyn wrote a long, warmly appreciative profile of Rei Kawakubo, the Comme des Garçons designer who is set to receive the International Award from the Council of Fashion Designers of America this year. The Times fashion critic writes, "No living designer with the exception of Azzedine Alaïa is held in higher esteem by her peers, and none has enriched our spirit in so many original and confounding ways." (Horyn's love for Alaïa is well-documented.) Kawakubo says, "I do not feel happy when a collection is too understood."
"My design process never starts or finishes. I am always hoping to find something through the mere act of living my daily life. I do not work from a desk, and do not have an exact starting point for any collection. There is never a mood board, I do not go through fabric swatches, I do not sketch, there is no eureka moment, there is no end to the search for something new. As I live my normal life, I hope to find something that click starts a thought, and then something totally unrelated would arise, and then maybe a third unconnected element would come from nowhere. Often in each collection, there are three or so seeds of things that come together accidentally to form what appears to everyone else as a final product, but for me it is never ending. There is never a moment when I think, ‘this is working, this is clear.' If for one second I think something is finished, the next thing would be impossible to do."
Donatella Versace spoke at Oxford University. She told the crowd that she was considering sneaking into one of her son's band's gigs wearing a wig — he has barred her from attending and embarrassing him. And she related an anecdote about Elizabeth Taylor:
Taylor admired Versace's ring once, and asked if she could try it. Versace obliged, but never managed to get the ring back. Instead, she received a thank you from Taylor: "Hey darling, the ring is so beautiful. Thank you so much!"
Classy, Liz. [WWD]
Convicted felon and securities fraudster Steve Madden says that working with the Olsen twins is "Painful. Painful." The Olsens turned to Madden to do the shoes for their Elizabeth & James brand. "They're very demanding, they're very tough," says Madden. "They are difficult. They are exacting. They are a pain in the ass. But they're very good though." [Fashionista]
Anthony Vaccarello — maker of the infamous Anja Rubik Met Ball dress, and a good many other sexy, slit-to-here dresses besides — talks about his career so far and how he came at such a young age to be championed by fashion industry icons including Lou Doillon and Karlie Kloss. And he says his dresses don't require styling tape to stay up, because (as we figured out after examining Rubik's Met dress), the construction isn't so much a skirt with a slit as it is a one-legged jumpsuit:
'The dress is not a slit - it's more about the construction, it's like a jumpsuit dress. It's a dress, but it's also like pants. It's a slit, but the leg is outside through a hole."
After Cameron Diaz wore some blue jeans, the PR teams of two brands — Earnest Sewn and Rag & Bone — eagerly claimed credit for the pants in separate email blasts. Diaz' PR later confirmed she in fact wore Rag & Bone. [Fashionista]
American Apparel announced some very positive preliminary financial results for the month of May. Perhaps the troubled retailer's long sales slide is coming to an end? Dov Charney & co. say that during this last month, same-store sales rose 19% year-on-year. The company's total revenue is still around 15% below its 2008 peak. American Apparel began hemorrhaging sales in February, 2009, and continued to experience steep year-on-year declines in every successive month for the next three years. Same-store sales don't tell the whole story of a company's performance — American Apparel had positive year-on-year same-store sales last quarter, and still posted a $7.9 million loss — but healthy comps may be an indication this company is finally turning the corner. [AA]
Iman said at a beauty industry conference that the business needs to pay more attention to the needs of women of color, rather than relegating "ethnic" brands to just a few stores in certain neighborhoods and relying on outdated assumptions (for instance, that black women "don't buy liquid foundation" — something some beauty execs apparently still believe). She says that she recently approached "the players — Wal-Mart, Target, Walgreens" about stocking her cosmetics line, which has been very successful at J.C. Penney and Sephora. Those chains were initially enthusiastic, but then wanted to "test" the 18-year-old brand before a full roll-out. "It was a no-go," says Iman, because they only wanted to stock her products in the back of the store. "They wanted me to be placed at the back, which they considered, like it is, for the ethnic section, which I was totally against." [WWD]
Kate Moss submitted to a rare, and brief, on-camera interview in connection with her position as the longtime face of Mango. The notoriously interview-shy supermodel came across as nervous and scared. [Telegraph]
Modelizer and inexplicable musician Adam Levine is now apparently dating Behati Prinsloo. [Daily Mail]
Anne Vyalitsyna, meanwhile, just bagged her first film role: she will have a role in the fifth Die Hard movie, which is set in Russia. [Variety]
Icelandic model Kolfinna Kristofersdottir says she would get a tattoo on her face, after she quits the biz. [The Cut]
A woman in Texas named Patricia Walker is suing Neiman Marcus and her ex-husband, Robert Tennison, over what her lawyer says was a $1.4 million fraud. Over several years, Tennison gave Walker gifts of jewelry, purchased at Neiman Marcus for a total of $1.4 million. Only it turns out that Tennison was allegedly using his wife's bank account to buy the gifts, and he was buying them to enrich a certain Neiman Marcus personal shopper with tens of thousands of dollars in commission. A Neiman Marcus personal shopper with whom Tennison was having an affair. When Walker discovered the fraud, she tried to return the jewelry to the store, but Neiman Marcus wouldn't take it. So she is suing. [Fashionista]
Nike is selling off Cole Haan and Umbro to concentrate on the Nike, Converse, Jordan, and Hurley brands. [WWD]