To Build Successful Businesses, Start Solving Problems

Like their counterparts in Silicon Valley, fashion entrepreneurs should begin by identifying real problems. Not enough dresses and handbags to choose from isn’t one of them, argues Ari Bloom.

Source: Op-Ed | To Build Successful Businesses, Start Solving Problems | Opinion, Op Ed | BoF

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Unpacking the Apple-Met Museum Fashion Collaboration – WSJ

Here’s a timely and interesting article that could have been the basis for much of our discussion so far. “Death of Fashion,” Post-modern condition, art in the age of mechanical reproduction, McLuhan, and on and on…
~KA

Apple Chief Design Officer Jony Ive, Vogue Editor-in-Chief Anna Wintour and the Metropolitan Museum’s Costume Institute Curator Andrew Bolton speak with the WSJ about their upcoming exhibit on fashion and technology.

Source: Unpacking the Apple-Met Museum Fashion Collaboration – WSJ

As Apple Watch launches, smartwatch app makers explore new interfaces | Technology | The Guardian

A McLuhan moment, or just hype? The APPLE WATCH is coming! OMG!OMG! (Or is it a Segway…?)
Quotation of the day:
“It wouldn’t surprise me if folks eventually began watching videos on the watch — people will watch videos on anything — but at the start, the watch seems like it provides you with quick feedback, small bits of information that you can transact on. Deeper actions will occur on the phone.”
Fast, fast, fast, eh? It’s an interesting point to consider where this will go IF it takes off and lower-priced competitors start to show up (and better battery life.) The screen is the thing, but now….?
As Apple Watch launches, smartwatch app makers explore new interfaces | Technology | The Guardian.

In Paris, Sex Sells, While Innovation is Scarce

I am making this article required reading next week. I initially thought I’d highlight a quotation or two, but in the end I just wanted to highlight all of it.  So…. read and comment, and let’s set aside discussion time for this…

In Paris, Sex Sells, While Innovation is Scarce – BoF – The Business of Fashion.

#GIRLBOSS: The Rise of America’s “Nastygal”

http://www.wwd.com/media-news/print/sophia-amoruso-talks-girlboss-7667795?module=latest-articles

Sophia Amoruso, founder and CEO of the massively popular apparel website, Nastygal, has been tremendously busy promoting her new book “#Girlboss”, which hits stores today. #Girlboss tells Sophia’s story of how she grew up with nothing and now runs a multi-million dollar fashion business, which she began by selling vintage clothing through eBay. In order to promote this inspiring, out-of-the-box book, Sophia has been applying some normal, as well as many out-of-the-box marketing strategies. Aside from interviews with major news programs such as the BBC, ABC, and Good Morning America, Sophia’s marketing tactics range from topping taxicabs with advertisements reading “If this is a man’s world, who cares? #GirlBoss“, to paralleling a chapter from her book and offering free bagels out of dumpsters, to providing a working hotline at 1-844-GIRLBOSS, which provides a “quick guide to an awesome life”. Judging by her promotional approaches alone, Sophia Amoruso’s new book is sure to be full of helpful and creative tips and techniques on how to manage money, business, and fashion, while also keeping it weird.

Met Gala 2014: A White Tie Affair

http://www.wwd.com/menswear-news/fashion/the-met-ball-in-a-tizzy-about-tails-7662450?navSection=package&navId=7668026

The annual Costume Institute’s Gala at the Metropolitan Museum of Art is notorious for implying a strict, themed dress code for all of its exclusive attendees. This year was a little different, however, for the men attending the gala were not asked to adorn themselves in their typical Black Tie attire–they were, instead, asked to channel some first-half-of-the-century nostalgia with classic White Tie, Charles James-esque ensembles. Though sometimes prevalent for certain events in the UK, it is not very common for men to dress in White Tie attire in the US, making it difficult, yet fun for the male attendees to be able to dress outside the norm for once. White Tie is a timeless and tasteful form of dress, and those men attending the party were given the opportunity to mix up their usual evening wear, instead wearing tailcoats and adorning canes and top hats. This important, stylish event could foreshadow new trends in menswear, and even womenswear fashions for upcoming seasons.

Met Gala 2014: An Exhibit Dedicated to Detail

http://www.wwd.com/fashion-news/fashion-features/charles-james-met-moment-7664308?navSection=package&navId=7668026

The Met Gala, fashion’s best-dressed night of the year, took place last night at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in Manhattan, to kick off its newest exhibit “Charles James: Beyond Fashion”. The exhibit is opening mainly inside the new Anna Wintour Costume Center, and displays a number of pieces made by the famous fashion-meets-sculpture designer. During his lifetime, James was a celebrated designer, using innovative cuts and construction techniques to highlight various details in his extraordinary works. He believed that his designs should be used in order to teach design techniques, and the exhibit appears to do a great job of emphasizing his unique yet innovative practices. In parts of the exhibit, there are even “animations of how the fabrics were manipulated to come together in one piece . . .” which ” . . . add[s] to the experience” of the designs and the exhibit as a whole. James himself would be proud of this display, for it tells his whole life story, while highlighting his attention to every little detail in design. The exhibit is open to the public beginning on Thursday, May 8th, and will run through August 10th, and is sure to inspire various forgotten designs and details for upcoming seasons in fashion.

 

A Look at Tommy Hilfiger’s Rise, Fall, and Rise

http://www.businessweek.com/articles/2014-04-18/tommy-hilfger-q-and-a-the-rise-and-fall-and-rise-of-a-man-and-his-brand

 

I thought this article related to our discussion of brands, and their need to stay relevant and not get too comfortable. Tommy Hilfiger was such an iconic brand, with a well established market, but the success couldn’t last forever. He was at the turning point of the “casual wear” era but he inevitably had to rebrand when this trend left. The portion of the article about the brand being adopted into the “hip-hop” culture is also interesting. It not only affected consumer behavior, but he admits that a simple change in customer interest changed what the brand was.

The China Edit

The China Edit

I found this article on China to be very interesting. The China Edit is a weekly curation of the more important and recent business fashion news and analysis about the world’s largest luxury market. In the article, it explains that China’s fashion is changing as well as adapting quickly to familiar designers such as Armani, Gucci and Prada, which are displayed in many of China’s fashion magazines. Also in the article, another interesting fact stated that The Body Shop has removed all its products from duty-free shelves in China. This is due to the fact that if the product is on Chinese shelves, the Chinese authorities can test the products on animals, in which The Body Shop is a cruelty-free company. Lastly, in the article, it explains that some parts of China are moving away from the whole idea of carrying around a plastic credit card, and issuing “virtual” credit cards. The virtual credit card can be used for online transactions and some online retailers that will accept the QR code. I’m not too sure if I would like the idea of a virtual credit card due to theft. It is so easy to lose you cell phone or have your phone stolen, which in this case is just like getting your phone and credit card stolen. It will be interesting to me to see if the idea of the virtual credit card will be used by any other countries, and if it will continue to work.