Category Archives: Fashion

Tyra Banks: The Supreme of the Supers



Tyra Lynne Banks is an African-American model, author, actress, TV personality and philanthropist. She was born on the 4th of December 1973 in California, in the US. In 2007 she was named as one of the Times: 100 Most Influential People in the world.

She was the first black woman to appear on the cover of Sports Illustrated Magazine’s Swimsuit Issue . Her rise to fame stemmed from this success as well as her appearance on the same cover the next year. She was also the first black woman to feature on the cover of GQ and in 1997 she was the first black woman chosen for the cover of Victoria’s Secret Catalogue. She was a Victoria’s Secret Angel from 1997 to 2005.

She started her own production company, Bankable Productions. Productions include The Tyra Banks Show which premiered 12 September 2005. The show was aimed towards young women and dealt with issues they face as they grow up and enter the world. Through the show, she reconstructed the meaning of ‘beautiful’ emphasizing that real women are not perfect and ridiculing the air-brushed image we’re fed through mainstream media.

After a picture of her looking over weight was released and circulated in the media. Tyra came out in that same bikini, during her show and told everyone that she emraced her curves and that women everywhere should.

She won, in 2008, the Daytime Emmy Award for The Tyra Banks Show and again in 2009. Oprah Wimphrey was among the people who believed that Tyra’s show was a constant inspiration for girls everywhere, and that Tyra herself was larger than life.

Another production by Bankable Productions was a movie, The Clique, based on popular teen novel series by Lisi Harrison.



As a philanthropist she established TZONE programme in 1999 aimed towards leadership and life skills development. She also funds the Tyra Banks Scholarship funding tuition for young African American girls at the prestigious, Immaculate Heart High School she attended.



The most successful TV show she produced with Bankable Productions was the Top Model franchise. Starting with the American counterpart, America’s Next Top Model, the brand has grown to epic proportions with Top Model shows in Asia and Europe. For America’s Next Top Model, she is creator, executive producer, host and head judge.

Her first novel, Modelland was on the New York Times Best Seller list in October 2011. It is a story about four girls accepted into a prestigious modelling school in the world of the book’s namesake, Modelland.



Despite much criticism Tyra Banks is inarguably on of the most influential women today. she has used her celebrity for good and is a role model for both young and old, women and men alike. She has delved where no other super model had before and opened doors for young women who like she once did, wish to be Top Models.

Keira Knightley to Play Coco Chanel

Chanel Logo

In celebration of the 100th anniversary of one of the biggest and most notable fashion houses in the world, Chanel, a film documenting the life Coco Chanel will be produced. Keira Knightley will be playing Chanel’s matriarch Gabrielle ‘Coco’ Chanel. The film will be directed by Karl Lagerfeld. Lagerfeld is the head designer of Chanel among many other prominent fashion houses. He is also an artist, photographer and he has also acted in a few films. The film will be released at the Chanel Cruise Show in Singapore in early May later this year.

Keira Knightley and Karl Lagerfeld. Photo by: Gamma 40

Keira Knightley and Karl Lagerfeld. Photo by: Gamma 40

Lagerfeld, the director, is a German fashion designer, artist and photographer. Not only the creative director of Chanel he also heads Fendi a brand he joined in 1967 and his own label, Karl Lagerfeld launched in 1984 and sold to Tommy Hilfiger. Despite the sale he maintained the head creative director position. He once designed an H&M range for Chloe, as well as being head creative director for the fashion house in the 70s. He joined Chanel, for the first time, as head creative director-the position he still holds today- in 1993.

The film will be mostly based and filmed in Deauville, a seaside town in the North of France. The small town is home to the first Chanel boutique, opened in 1913 and financed by Coco’s lover Captain Arthur “Boy” Capel, a wealthy British aristocrat. Deauville’s former quaint beauty will be recreated through retro sets, Lagerfeld says. The town is also the town where Coco used to send her sister Antoinette and aunt Adrienne out in the streets to show off her designers and attract customers before she was famous.

Coco Chanel

Coco Chanel

Gabrielle “Coco” Chanel is known as one of the most important women in fashion even today, 42 years after her death. Born in 1883, the fashion mogul, recreated her childhood, to hide from the public, the poverty she went through in the early years of her life. She also changed her birth date so that when she died she was 78 and not 88. The building that houses Coco Chanel’s apartment (although she lived at The Ritz Hotel in Paris for almost 30 years) was bought by Chanel in 1920. The building still has the ground floor shop, haute couture workrooms in the attic where 100 seamstresses still sew by hand. The building also includes Miss Chanel’s former study, now Lagerfeld’s. Chanel, the fashion house has the best-selling fragrance for women in the world, Chanel No.5.

The upcoming film will not be the first to be made about the mother of the modern woman’s fashion. Other films include the 2009 film, Coco Before Chanel, starring Audrey Tautou as Coco Chanel. The film was directed by Anne Fontaine.

Keira Knightley as the Face of Coco Mademoiselle

Keira Knightley as the Face of Coco Mademoiselle

Keira Knightley, the British actress playing the role of the famed fashion designer is also the face of Coco Mademoiselle, a Chanel fragrance. She replaced Kate Moss in 2007. Lagerfeld handpicked her himself and has said on numerous occasions that the 27-year-old is his muse. He is currently working on Knightley’s dress for her upcoming marriage to James Righton a British musician. The 27 year old’s most notable works include the Pirates of the Caribbean series, Pride and Prejudice (for which she received an Oscar nomination) and the recent film Anna Karenina based on a novel (of the same name) by Russian author Leo Tolstoy published in 1877.

CFDA Fashion Awards: ‘The Oscars of fashion’

The Council of Fashion Designers (CFDA) was founded in 1962 by Eleanor Lambert, founding mother of New York Fashion Week, Fashion designer and arguably the most important woman in American Fashion. She is said to be the woman who put American fashion on the map because before the fashion week, people only paid attention to French and Italian fashion. The CFDA is a non-profit association of over 450 prominent American Fashion designers.

The CFDA awards are given to the designers who exhibited the best works in the different categories the previous year, Designers who win are awarded for the most fashionable and innovative collections of the year. Winners are nominated and voted for by members of the CFDA and a select portion of the most prominent names in fashion including some fashion magazines, stylists and fashion retailers.

The nominees this year were announced at an exclusive event in New York City, United States of America. The event was hosted by fellow designers Diane von Furstenberg and Nadja Swarovski.

There are 8 categories, 3 of which, have their winners announced at the event. The categories where winners are announced at the event are, The International Award, awarded to the best designer who is not american. Last year it went to Rei Kawakubo a Japanese Designer. he was awarded for his ‘Commes des Garcons’ collection. Other awards include: the Emerging Talent Award for Ready to Wear and the Geoffery Beene Lifetime Achievement Award, which will be presented by Vera Wang this year. Geofferey Beene was a 4-time CFDA award winning fashion designer.

The are 3 nominated awards, whose winners will be announced at the event. The Women’s wear of the year award nominees, are Jack McCollough, Alexander Wang, Marc Jacobs and Lazaro Hernandez for Proenza Schoeler. For the Men’s Wear of The Year Award, the nominees are Steve Cox & Daniel Silver for Duckie Brown, Michael Bastian, and Thom Browne.

Accessory Designer of the Year Award nominations got to: Phillip Lim for 3.1, Phillip Lim, Alexander Wang, Jack McCollough and Lazaro Hernandez for Proenza Schoeler.

The Founder’s Award, given in honour of the CFDA’s founder, Eleanor Lambert, goes to Oscar de la Renta this year. There are also the Swarovski Awards for the best jewellery designs.

The CFDA Fashion Awards this year will be held on the 3rd of June at the Lincoln Center in New York City. There will be a digital broadcast on on the 4th of June. the first broadcast event was in 2011 and was aired on as well.

For more information on the CFDA Awards visit:

Biggest Trends: Fashion Week Autumn/ Winter 2013

As the weather gets colder, our sleeves get longer and looking at the top trends from the recent Autumn/ Winter Fashion Weeks, we have much too look forward to. Looking at some of the trending pieces this season, it is evident that fashion usually draws from the past for inspiration. This season the most notable shapes we have are inspired by the middle ages, the 20s, the 50s, and the 90s punk culture.

1. The Shoulders
This season’s favourite body part is the shoulders, from the padded shoulders of last year, now have round shoulders. This new style draws on middle ages couture. I’m not very convinced myself about this particular shape as I believe it makes the body look rounder, which most people don’t particularly like.

Another trend accentuating the shoulders was capes, much like the asymetrical skirts that were trending spring/ summer 2012.

In lieu with the emphasis on shoulders, the U-A-B (under arm bags) were another big trend.

2. The New Suit
Although there were plenty of traditional suits, the classic jacket/ blazer with skirt, there was also a lot of pencil skirts paired with sweaters/ jumpers. From long pencil skirts, that reach mid-calf to knee-lengths, the pencil skirt was a big trend, in many different materials. For the jumpers, any material from wool to faux-fur works.

4. Sex
All designers brought kinky back in all shapes. Using PVC, vinyl and latex, the aim was to create the sexiest outfit possible. This trend has ties with the spring/ summer leather trend. In clothing that looked to be a second skin, models showcased the erotic-inspired trend. Leather makes a comeback as a big trend this season as well.

5. Colour
Where orange was the main spring/ summer colour, royal blue was winter’s crowning glory. A good choice for winter, because despite its calmness (compared to orange) it is still bright enough a colour to stand out. Another loudly royal colour that graced the catwalks (especially in Milan) was gold.

Other colours that stood out were an entire spectrum from soft pinks, to deep crimsons. These colours give the cooler seasons a warm glow.

Polka dots also coloured the catwalks across many designers. It seems as if one cannot go wrong with colour this season.

6. Upsize coats
The relaxed silhouettes make a come-back this season in large man-ish coats. This is my favourite trend of the season. I like the comfort it affords and the warmth it promises. Although like the rounded shoulders, relaxed silhouettes hide the body’s shape; I still prefer them over the round shoulders because where they look almost grunge chic, the round shoulders look round.

7. Animal Magic
Animal print is the print of the season and works on anything especially cardigans.

Faux-Fur is back. During the fashion weeks there was a lot of fur, from coats, to scarves, to coat collars, fur works both as an accent and an item. Another big thing about fur this season is that it came in different textures. So faux-mink fur looked different from bengal tiger fur.

Feathers were a new trend, reminiscent of the 1920s.

For more reads on the Autumn/ Winter Collections:

Biggest Spring/Summer Trends from Fashion week

Because Fashion Week showcases the clothing of the upcoming season during the current season, the recent fashion week in February presented trends for the upcoming ( for the Northern Hemisphere) Fall/ Autumn; the season we, in the South, are currently in. I shall be noting the biggest trends from the September 2012 Fashion week, trends for the Northen Hemisphere, and the ways in which those of us in the South can use them to our advantage whilst its still warm. Imaxtree
1. Leather
The bondage or S&M inspired look graced the catwalk in what one could term as a 50 Shades of Grey look. From layered leather, leather jackets to leather pannelling on shirts, one cannot go wrong with leather in the upcoming season.
Leather is especially special because it can be worn both in warm and cold weather and is, therefor perfect whether in the north or south.
2. Color
Catwalks everywhere seemed to be wild fields of color. Orange stood out in the New york fashion week. Designers seemed to favour monochromatic outfits, outfits with the same colour palate. So for example, one can wear green pants of a differnet shade from their green blouse.
Colour, in my opinion works in all seasons. It’s always nice to brighten up your mood with a bright coloured coat on a dreary, rainy day. And there’s nothing like a bright summer’s day, in even brighter colours.
3. Prints
The summer dress in muted florals, or cotton pants with floral patterns are in this season. Floral shirts work as well. Any clothing item with print on it is trending this season. A suggestion for when you happen to be wearing an item with print; it always looks so much less “crazy” if paired with a stable colour. So if wearing a print dress, it would be advisable to settle for a cardigan with a single colour, or, if that’s too boring, you can always pair it with stripes.
4. Stripes
Vertical, diagonal, horizantal… It doesn’t matter which way they go as long as they are stripes. Stripes can work in any season and are therefor, easy to carry on from summer to winter.
5. Midriffs
This is a trend that has been very prominent here in South Africa, what with the heat we’ve been experiencing. But as the weather cools down it’s not a very informed idea to wear a crop-top. Personally, I have not been much of a crop-top fan. I believe that just because something is the trend doesn’t mean you have to wear it. If you know that you don’t exactly have the body for a particular trend, it does not make you unfashionable if you don’t wear it.
6. Relaxed silhouttes
There was a lot of eastern inspired looks at fashion week which would work well both in summer and winter. The eastern looks includes relaxed silhouettes. There were lots of sheer shirts, an item that is still trending in South Africa right now.
Other big trends included the colour, white, which featured in a lot of shows, denim (another big hit in South Africa), flat open shoes (because there is nothing worse than having sweaty feet). Baseball caps, in all shapes sizes and colours are also trending.

For more trends:

The Telegraph Fashion: New York Fashion Week Spring/ Summer 2013

The Telegraph Fashion: London Fashion Week Spring/ Summer 2013

Harper’s Bazaar: The Spring 2013 Runway Report

Marie Claire: Spring 2013 Fashion Trends

Fashion Week: Celebrating 70 Years of Fashion

New York Fashion Week 2013 Spring-Summer

New York Fashion Week 2013 Spring-Summer

February saw the largest event of the fashion world take place in the biggest fashion capitals of the world. Fashion Week 2013 showcased the best of the best as the fashion powerhouses of the world graced the catwalk with their Spring collections.

The bi-annual event is held in many cities but the most prominent “Fashion Weeks” are held in the fashion capitals of the world: London, Paris, Milan and New York. The event is presented as a series of runway shows, spanning the space of a week. The event takes place for interested buyers and, perhaps most importantly, as a means of communicating the trends of the season. For each city involved, a Fashion Week takes place. As mentioned before, the fashion capitals are the major hosts of the renowned event but other cities worldwide also host the event. Other cities involved include Copenhagen, Johannesburg and Tokyo. During Fashion Week, fashion designers or houses present a runway show in which their collection is exhibited. Many designers like to think of their fashion as art, and like an art exhibition, Fashion Week is the largest and best possible platform on which the designers can present their art.

Fashion week is usually held in advance of the upcoming season. This allows the media and buyers chance to preview, critique and purchase the designs for the following season. Fashion Week is also used as a platform by the larger and renowned fashion designers in which they showcase their latest innovations in clothing designs. All the different collections viewed at the event are usually covered by many fashion magazines and some newspapers. While the more avant-garde design sare covered in high fashion magazines like Vogue. As with all art, fashion is susceptible to critique. As well as being the highest platform a designer has to showcase their art, Fashion Week is also the platform on which designers are made famous.

The very first fashion week was held in 1943 in New York City, in the United States. The event was meant to distract from French fashion during the Second World War. Workers in the fashion industry were unable to travel to Paris as it was war-time. The designer Eleanor Lambert, a central figure in American fashion, organised what she called “Press Week.” Its purpose was to showcase American designers to Fashion Journalists. American designers had, before this, been ignored as it was widely perceived that they drew on the French for inspiration. Lambert’s “Press Week” was a success, so much that Vogue, a magazine that had previously only had french designers on its pages, diversified and included the Americans.

Fashion Week has gone on to become the biggest fashion event in the world.

Tune in tomorrow for the best trends to look out for in the upcoming season.

Stars Shine at the Oscars

Getty Images

Getty Images

Getty Images

Getty Images

The 85th Annual Academy Awards took place on the 24th of February at the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood, California. This year’s event earned its highest viewership with 42.40 million viewers since the 76th Annual Academy Awards in 2004. Arguably the most prestigious award screen actors and actresses can receive, all those present dressed for the part; in gowns and tuxedos from the biggest names in fashion.

The Academy Awards, widely known as the Oscars, are an annual event wherein all those involved in the process of filmmaking, from the director to the costume designer, have their hard work recognized in the form of an award. Hosted by Seth Macfarlane, it was the most watched ceremony since 2004.

Fashion is a very large part of the Oscars experience but the reason the event takes place is for the recognition of outstanding talent in film the year before. Jennifer Lawrence, for her role in Silver Linings Playbook, won the best actress award. Best actor was awarded to Daniel Day-Lewis for his role in Lincoln. Argo, directed by Ben Affleck won the award for Best Picture. Anne Hathaway (Les Miserables) and Christoph Waltz (Django Unchained) won Best Supporting Role.

The Oscars have always been a fashion platform. The E! Network, as with every awards show, runs a Fashion Police segment on the event, and the presenters of the show get to choose who was the best or worst dressed that night. This year’s Oscar special was hosted by Giuliana Rancic, an E! Presenter and Fashion Police panelist. Together with fellow E! Presenters Robbie Laughlin and Alicia Quarles they rated stars from their favourite looks of the night to the worst.

There were three actresses chosen as the best dressed. Jennifer Lawrence was in a Dior Haute Couture gown designed by Raf Simons. Critique from the presenters, was that the dress matched her skin tone. There wasn’t much contrast to her look. Halle Berry was in a Bond-girl inspired Versace dress. The only critique the panel had was that her hairstyle needed to change. Dressed in Giorgio Armani, Naomi Watts, the third of the best dressed, was liked the most by all the presenters for her daring choice.

Three actresses were chosen as the worst dressed of the night. The first, Anne Hathaway, was dressed in a Prada dress the presenters thought was “shapeless.” Robbie Laughlin thought Jennifer Garner in a Gucci gown was “dressed like barney” and that, like Anne Hathaway’s dress, it was boring and shapeless. All of the presenters agreed that although Kristen Stewart, in a Reem Acra gown, was in a “pretty dress” she did not look the part. All the effort that seemed to have been put towards her appearance was the choice of her dress and nothing else.

Andre Leon Talley, former editor-at-large of American Vogue Magazine thought the fashion this year, “one of the dullest… moments of the history of the Oscars.” He believes that there is less self-expression from the actresses as they are controlled by stylists, and that makes them “feel safe in a strapless dress with a train that is unnecessary.” As Kristen Stewart shows, this is very much the case.

For the E! Fashion Police: 2013 Oscars Best and Worst Dressed Video, go to:

For Andre Leon Talley’s full interview on the 2013 Oscars, go to: