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Who’s That Bra?
Posted by richard | March 15, 2012

Madonna is going to sell a lot of bras this year, but this time it’s not Gaultier or D&G who will benefit from the Material Girl’s midas touch.

The ageless icon — now 53! — has been releasing preview images this week in anticipation of the March 26 release of her new album MDNA and upcoming world tour.

The poses are provocative, revealing and heavily airbrushed — you expected anything less? — but they’ll probably do more to promote the vitality and enduring sensuality of middle-aged women since Cher hung up her boas.

Now the big question: who’s goods is she sporting in these glowing shots by Mert + Marcus? It’s the Raphaella padded demi bra from Agent Provocateur, a clever bit of engineering that creates a dramatic décolletage from a very small amount of material.

The Raphaella set is from AP’s autumn-winter collection and includes a corset, suspender and brief. It uses a French corded lace layered on pleated tulle, but much of the heavy lifting is done by the A-frame straps. It retails for $250 USD.

Our prediction? Madge is going to crush 2012 in a way that will make her many imitators gush and squirm with envy. Same goes Agent Provocateur, which just scored the biggest PR coup of the year.

Meet The Sears Turnaround Team
Posted by richard | March 14, 2012

Can the Kardashian sisters save Sears?

Don’t LOL. If anyone can bring the tottering retail giant back from certain death, it might be these three. Hell, there might even be a reality show in it: Kim and Kourtney Take Middle America.

The image above was tweeted by Khloe yesterday and it appears to show the beginnings of a new ad campaign, and possibly an expanded product line, for the intimates range in Sears’ Kardashian Kollection.

Who knows for sure? All Khloe had to say about it was: “OMG! How fab is this new ad for Kardashian Kollection lingerie blah blah blah!” Take that, Jon Hamm!

What’s more certain is that Sears has gone all-in with the Kardashians, positioning the celebrity tweeters as the centerpiece of its rebuilding exercise.

Since the Kardashian Kollection debuted last fall, Sears has launched a new website, SearsStyle.com, that leans heavily on celebrity brand tie-ins, relentless social media efforts and hook-ups with fashion bloggers.

Meanwhile, the K-Kollection has grown to include a wide range of fashion goods and accessories, while the Kardashian girls’ main role these days is to serve as promotional window dressing. If you care about such things, Sears is running a contest to give 200 lucky fans a chance to meet the K-girls in a Chicago mall next month.

And the new ad captures the new Sears pitch perfectly: fairly ordinary shopping-mall styles tarted up with a kind of faux Rodeo Drive sheen.

It’s a truly bizarre partnership, one that Forbes magazine said “reveals a brand in throes of an identity crisis.” While its executive team criss-crosses North America closing stores and culling product lines, Sears’ merchandising arm is relying on America’s most famously dysfunctional tribe of scandal-ridden self-promoters to stop the bleeding.

But don’t count them out — either Sears or the Kardashians, who have made a career out of turning hideous disasters into highly profitable commercial rebounds. Sears should be so lucky.

As for Jon Hamm, he was right, of course, but he sort of missed the point. It’s not the Kardashians’ intelligence that’s their main selling point, it’s their style. And, to paraphrase another grump, no one ever went broke underestimating the fashion tastes of the American public.

Super Mario’s Awesome Girlfight
Posted by richard | March 13, 2012

The ‘Model Combat‘ editorial shoot by photographer Mario Testino in the new V magazine is breathtaking — and scary. We’d like to see John Carter take on these two!

The photoshoot features Victoria’s Secret models Adriana Lima and Doutzen Kroes (both almost unrecognizable) in gladiatorial underwear styled by the always daring Nicola Formichetti.

The models are wearing a grab-bag of edgy pieces that include shredded American Apparel fishnets, a Tom Ford jacket, bras from Agent Provocateur and Versace, and those phenomenal harness riggings from Zana Bayne and Assaad Awad. Not to mention briefs that are, apparently, from Adriana’s “own collection.”

More photos and a making-of video below. These are from V76, the Sports issue, which features Jennifer Lopez on the cover and hit newsstands yesterday. A must-have for fans of really great fashion photography!


French Lessons from Antoinette Paris
Posted by richard | March 13, 2012
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If you’re a connoisseur of couture lingerie, you probably have a passion for the French and their classic boudoir styles, exquisite materials and unrivaled craftsmanship.

Happily, there’s plenty of fine French lingerie available in North America, even if that choice is mostly limited to a dozen or so major corporate brands.

What we don’t see that much over here is the full breadth and depth of the French lingerie industry, including boutique labels, new indie designers and small niche players that don’t have international distribution partnerships.

But a pair of French filles have embarked on a mission to fill in those gaps and introduce American women to the hidden gems of luxurious European lingerie.

Antoinette Paris is a new online boutique launched by sisters Laure and Caroline Gilleron as “a love letter to France” — and a tribute to their insatiable lust for French underfinery.

The Gilleron girls moved to Los Angeles from Toulouse four years ago to attend school and quickly fell in love with the U.S.A. Only one thing was missing, older sister Laure (left in photo above) told Lingerie Talk: “We couldn’t find the lingerie we were used to in France.”

Recognizing a business opportunity, the pair — Laure, 27, earned her master’s in finance from UCLA while Caroline, 23, completed a cosmetology program — decided to create a new distribution channel to introduce American women to lesser-known French brands.

“We knew some French brands like Aubade are successful here, but we thought it would be good to add more,” Laure said. “The idea was not to bring in already well-known brands but to bring emerging designers over from France to expand the market.”

Antoinette currently stocks three labels, although it must be pointed out that they’re not all strictly French:

  • New designer Odile de Changy, who creates luscious, romantic soft pieces;
  • Niche label French Cancan (shown in the main photo above), which specializes in ornate, burlesque-inspired hosiery; and
  • Prelude, a luxury label owned by Romanian brand Jolidon but with a very French vintage flair.

Antoinette Paris is keen to add more new French labels “whenever we find something we really love,” Laure said.



But the Gilleron sisters aren’t just selling underwear; they want to help American women develop a more refined appreciation for fashion lingerie in general. They’re hoping that their passion for sensuous silks, delicate lace and intricate sewing will catch on in North America, too.

“What I love most about lingerie is that there is so much detail in such a tiny garment,” Laure said.

Women should devote as much thought — and budget — to their lingerie choices as they do to their skin-care product purchases, they believe.

American lingerie, she added, is “more casual, (with) more simple designs. In Europe, it’s something more elegant and special. It’s something we wear everyday, but it still needs some sophistication.”

The early customer response to the company’s offerings has been enthusiastic, Laure noted.

“Customers love the quality of the lingerie, they love the designs. It’s really new for them.”

“American women are starting to get very interested in this kind of lingerie. They want to feel more beautiful, more confident, and this kind of lingerie will help them do that.”

Here’s a look at some of the brands available through Antoinette Paris:

ODILE de CHANGY

PRELUDE

FRENCH CANCAN

Posted in Lingerie News
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Rihanna’s Wake-Up Call from Armani
Posted by LT Staff | March 12, 2012

It takes a while to figure out what’s going on in Rihanna‘s new video promotion for Emporio Armani jeans and underwear, but that’s part of the fun.

The bronze pop star is shown writhing around by herself in a bed, then wakes up to find herself alone in an unfamiliar apartment. She gets up and begins aimlessly looking for clues that might explain the conspicuous absence of her mate, only to find a cryptic note on the mirror.

Rather than wait around, she heads for the door before the sun rises. Another night, another booty call.

This is RiRi’s second black-and-white film for Armani, which signed her to rep their jeans and undies line a year ago. The first video went on to be named the sexiest ad of the year by Advertising Age. Expect this one to be in the running for 2012!

The video is below, and you find more images featuring Rihanna in Armani’s minimalist underwear here.

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