Friday, October 29, 2010

Stella McCartney for Target

Today, Friday 29 October, Target Australia released its latest Designers For Target Collection and it's the second time that this collaboration is with Stella McCartney. With the overwhelming response to the 2007 Stella McCartney for Target collection (see Stella McCartney Designer Discount Clothes on Target), in fact their were riots at some store locations, there can be little doubt that this second Stella McCartney for Target range will be very popular with Australian fashionistas.

Stella McCartney | Target | Designers For Target Collection | Heavy Lace Embroidered Strapless Dress
Stella McCartney for Target, Heavy Lace Embroidered Strapless Dress (Nude)
Whereas the first Stella McCartney for Target collection primarily had a daywear focus, this second Stella McCartney for Target collection has definitely more of an evening wear pitch with affordable and well-tailored pretty cocktail dresses and feminine lace and satin separates, tulip skirts, blazers, cropped cigarette pants and skinny jeans in simple colour palettes and neutral shades.

The apparel range in this designer collection includes the luxe looking Heavy Lace Embroidered Strapless Dress (see image above) available in Black and Nude ($229), the very pretty Lace Dress (see first image below) available in Black and French Blue ($199) and the Bow Gathered Detail Dress (second image below) available in Black, Felicia and Petunia ($149).

Stella McCartney | Target | Designers For Target Collection | Lace Dress
Stella McCartney for Target Lace Dress (Black)

Stella McCartney | Target | Designers For Target Collection | Bow Gathered Detail Dress
Stella McCartney for Target Bow Gathered Detail Dress
I love the outfit shown in the following image and featuring the Stella McCartney for Target Collarless Jacket in Ivory ($199), the Lace Tee Shirt in Black ($129) and the Tight Mesh Insert Trouser in Black ($99). The Stella McCartney Collarless Jacket is also available in French Blue and the Lace Tee Shirt in Felicia and Ivory.

Stella McCartney | Target | Designers For Target Collection | Collarless Jacket | Lace Tee Shirt | Tight Mesh Insert Trouser
The Stella McCartney for Target Collarless Jacket (Ivory), the Lace Tee Shirt (Black) and the Tight Mesh Insert Trouser (Black)
Other pieces in the Stella McCartney for Target apparel collection I like include the Jacket With Collar Worn Up (see first image directly below), available in Black and Navy ($179) and the sophisticated and chic Sequin Knit Sweater (second image below) available in Black and Nude ($149).

Stella McCartney | Target | Designers For Target Collection | Jacket With Collar Worn Up
Stella McCartney for Target Jacket With Collar Worn Up (Black)

Stella McCartney | Target | Designers For Target Collection | Sequin Knit Sweater
Stella McCartney for Target Sequin Knit Sweater (Nude)
The 2010 Stella McCartney for Target collection also includes 21 accessories including a number of handbags, totes ($99) and clutches ($69), bangles and headbands. There's a large tote bag in Black or Off White priced at $99 and a framed clutch in Black and Off White priced at $69. I do like the look of the framed clutch in black as shown in the image below.

Stella McCartney | Target | Designers For Target Collection | Frame Clutch in Black
Stella McCartney for Target Frame Clutch in Black

The collection, featuring Stella McCartney's signature style, includes a total of 42 pieces with items from Stella's recent ranges as well as garments created exclusively for Target. To see the full collection visit Stella McCartney, Designers for Target. As was the case with the first Stella McCartney for Target collaboration, although a limited collection, what I like about this Stella McCartney collection is that even with a few garments, say a couple of jackets and tops, a pair of designer jeans, and a skirt or two, you can easily mix and match to create a number of very different, sassy and chic, designer fashion outfits

The range looks impressive and reports coming in already indicate that this Stella McCartney for Target collection will be a designer fashion sale sell-out at Target stores around the country as it was in March 2007 for the first Stella McCartney for Target release.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Lanvin for H&M

In our post, Exclusive Lanvin Designer Collection for H&M back in early September, we wrote about how the Paris-based and luxury, super chic Lanvin was going to be H&M's next high-fashion designer collaboration. We reported that the Lanvin H&M collection will go on sale on November 23 in 200 H&M stores worldwide. However, the launch is now only 5 days away when the collection will be seen for the first time on the H&M website but to build up publicity and while doing so whet our appetites, already some leaks are starting to be released.

First, there's the following video clip in which fashion model/actress Natasha Poly talks about the line while backstage on the set of the Lanvin for H&M campaign shoot. The images are deliberately blurred no doubt to hide the Lanvin for H&M collection being worn by the models. However, do not despair....

As the Huffington Post in its article, Lanvin For H&M Sneak Peek Revealed and Vouge in the article, Lanvin For H&M have reported, the cheap chic, high-street global retail chain H&M has already revealed a couple of images from the collection.

4 Outfits from the | Lanvin H&M | Designer | Fashion | Collection
Four Outfits from the Lanvin for H&M Collection
In particular, the image above from the launch shows four models wearing completely black Lanvin H&M outfits, frightfully sexy in Black and accessorized with Black sunglasses and some with white pearl necklaces. Starting from the left, the first model is wearing a nothing short of stunning Black Taffeta one-shoulder dress with the most beautiful tulip styled short Juliet sleeve over the left shoulder. The dress is short and hits high above the knees and also features a wide black belt. I'm really excited about this Lanvin for H&M dress. The next model is wearing a two-tone Black matt and satin coat with belt and a feature collar. The third model is wearing a Black low-cut Tuxedo jacket with a Satin-look lapel over a Black Satin mini-skirt that once again hits high above the knees for that 'killer' look. The fourth model, Natasha Poly, is wearing a Black sleeveless ruffled dress again hitting high above the knees and featuring a wide black belt. So most are flirty LBDs hitting high above the knees and you can definitely see the Lanvin cut and tailoring in these pieces with a definite focus on form and detail.

I'm really excited about the Black Taffeta one-shoulder dress shown in the picture below in more detail. It looks super chic and oh so Lanvin.

Black Taffeta one-shoulder dress from the | Lanvin H&M | Designer | Fashion | Collection
Black Taffeta one-shoulder dress from the Lanvin for H&M Collection
For more clues about the soon-to-be-released Lanvin for H&M collection this is what Lanvin's Alber Elbaz said last month:
And then the phone rang. I said, "Hello? Hello?" And it was H&M on the phone. I thought, "H&M?" They actually told me, "Alber, you make so many people dream in fashion. Let's try to see if you can't translate that dream to a bigger audience." And we created a dream and I hope it makes you feel good. Just take a floral dress, take a tuxedo. Just enjoy this kind of tulle and T-shirts and printed dresses. We wanted to have more people around the world be able to afford it, and that's why I was behind the project and I hope you like it.

When I saw the final samples that H&M brought, after a couple of months of working on them, I almost got a panic attack. I mean, they were so good. I couldn't see the difference between the originals and what H&M re-created. I realize more and more how important, though, is what we are going to do and what we are doing at Lanvin today. It is the difference between creating and re-creating. Whatever took me nine years to create was actually re-created in three months, and it was done in an amazing way. And the importance of experimenting and trying to find solutions and to go higher and higher because this is actually the essence of high fashion.
So when Alber saw the final collection they were so good he couldn't see the difference between the originals and what H&M re-created. Like I said back in September, "H&M going luxury, oh I can't wait for this much anticipated collection." In the meantime, stay tuned as we'll bring you more updates on the Lanvin for H&M collection very soon. Oh before I go, check out this video of the Lanvin Spring/Summer 2011 Ready-to-wear runway show at Paris Fashion Week. Alber Elbaz filled the runway with a mix of classy and chic long pleated skirts split open at the sides, pantsuits and elongated jackets. Celebrities including Janet Jackson, Lenny Kravitz and Deeta Von Teese were there showing their support for Lanvin.

See Latest Update: Lanvin for H&M

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Dress for Less at Old Navy

Greetings Chic Alert readers! Like many of you, I’m a card-carrying shopaholic with the overstuffed closet of clothing, shoes and handbags to prove it. While I’ve indulged my inner diva by splurging on a few high-end designer labels over the years (either by saving up or by maxing out my credit cards at those designer fashion sales!), most of my purchases are pretty strategic. I put my shopping dollars toward stylish, quality items that will amp up my wardrobe without breaking the bank. So it might come as a surprise that, among all of my skirts, sweaters, jeans and tees, there isn’t one single piece from Old Navy!

Daily Mail Online | TV & Showbiz | Kristin Cavallari | Old Navy
Kristin Cavallari in Red Old Navy Ruffled Pea Coat (Source: Daily Mail Online)
Well, all that changed recently when I was asked to be part of the Old Navy Blogger Subscription Program. It’s pretty simple really. Once a month, Old Navy generously provides me with a $100 gift card to use at or in an Old Navy retail store. In return, I share with you, all of the details about my Old Navy purchase and my overall shopping experience -- whether good or bad. Pretty cool, huh?

Before I get to my pick, I have a confession to make. While almost all of my friends are Old Navy “regulars,” I’ve always walked past the store without the slightest desire to see what all the fuss is about. I suppose that my indifference had more to do with my pre-conceived notions about the quality than anything else. After all, with such low prices, surely Old Navy clothing won’t last more than a couple of day or night outs, right?

Wrong! My initiation into Old Navy was a pleasant surprise. True, the store isn’t exactly filled with designer fashion investment pieces. However, if you’re looking for comfortable, on-trend items that provide good value for your dollar, you won’t be disappointed. From this season’s hot swing coat sweaters to eye-catching studded handbags, there is no shortage of enticing finds. Of course, taking my “mission” very seriously, I didn’t hit the store without conducting some preliminary research. After visiting to get a sense of the styles, colors and prices that would be awaiting me upon my in-store arrival, it was clear that I would have my work cut out for me. There were fab ankle-zip skinny cargo pants, some chic tie-belt cardigans, luxe-looking faux fur boots… and the list goes on. Within minutes, I had fallen for items from almost every category. Among my faves were a Black, Cropped, Toggle-Button “Jet Setter” Cape-Style Sweater with dolman sleeves, a pair of Two-Button Tweed Trousers, and some cotton and spandex Navy Blue and Turquoise Fold-Over Yoga Pants. Decisions, decisions! Ultimately though, it was the wide selection of coats and jackets that impressed me more than anything. (Okay, time for another confession here: My interest in Old Navy coats and jackets was more than a little bit prompted by the fact that reality star Kristin Cavallari and 90210 star AnnaLynne McCord have been spotted in the same Red Old Navy Ruffled Pea Coat during the past month (see: Sexy in the city: Kristin Cavallari is a vision in red in NYC!). After all, if Old Navy outerwear is chic enough for two of Hollywood’s It Girls, it has to be worth a look!)

Always one to prefer one big purchase to a bevy of smaller ones, I spent my $100 Old Navy Gift Card on a single item – a classic Double-Breasted, Wool-Blend Coat (see pics below) that is as functional as it is fashionable and which will no doubt see me through several autumns to come. It's available in Brown, Infuschion, Black and Cream. Sure, I could have gotten a couple of sweaters and leggings for the same price, but I don’t regret my decision one bit. This Old Navy coat is gorgeous!! For starters, the double-breasted style is absolutely timeless while the slightly darted waist gives it an ultra-feminine silhouette. The back-waist belt accentuates an hourglass figure even further, giving this coat a “twirl-worthy” feel. On the practical side though, the big selling point for me was the deep button side-flap pockets! They’ll provide plenty of room for my gloves without looking the least bit bulky. I’ve amassed quite a collection of coats and jackets through the years, and have never understood why more designers don’t include pockets! The classic spread collar is also perfect for transitional fall-to-winter dressing since it can be worn with or without a scarf. Oh, and did I mention that this luxe looking coat is fully lined?

Old Navy | Double-Breasted, Wool-Blend Coat
Old Navy, Double-Breasted, Wool-Blend Coat

I purchased a Size Small and would say that it runs true to size. If you purchase your regular size, you should be able to wear it over both suiting and relatively thick sweaters without feeling constricted. I’m almost 5’5”, and this Old Navy coat falls just above my knee, making it the perfect topper for this season’s over-the-knee boots. I also have very long arms, and was thrilled that the sleeves fall below my wrist as they should (too-short sleeves are a pet peeve of mine). At $89.50 US plus tax, my first-ever Old Navy purchase looks and feels far more expensive than it is.

This classy Old Navy coat will be an excellent addition to your autumn wardrobe. Keep in mind that, unless you live in an especially warm area of the country, it probably won’t be thick enough to take you through winter. However, I saw plenty of heavier options that will see you through those dreaded frigid temperatures in style.

To say that my first-ever Old Navy shopping experience was a pleasant surprise would be an understatement. Aware of the brand’s popularity among “tweens” and teenagers, I had always assumed that Old Navy would have little to offer my demographic: the young professional who is looking for style and quality at an affordable price. Well, I couldn’t have been more wrong! This was my first Old Navy experience, but it certainly won’t be my last. If you’re a professional, style-savvy woman in your 20s or 30s, I’d highly recommend a trip to Old Navy if you haven’t made one already!

And before I forget, the staff at my local Old Navy store were fantastic – very helpful, but not at all pushy. My sales associate advised me of all of the current sales and was highly knowledgeable about the company and the products. As a fun aside, she even knew about the recent paparazzi shots of Cavallari and McCord in Old Navy, adding that Eva Longoria Parker (see Eva Longoria Parker in Old Navy: Fashion Designers InStyle) and Gossip Girl’s Chace Crawford have been spotted in Old Navy as well!

Old Navy has definitely found a new fan in this fashionista! I can’t wait to come back next month with my new Old Navy picks. Until then, I’d love to hear your thoughts on fashion shopping at Old Navy and on this season’s Old Navy pieces. Have you purchased any Old Navy Fall or Winter clothing yet? What about footwear or accessories? This Old Navy newbie is looking for recommendations!

Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this post are purely my own and were not in any way influenced by Old Navy, the exclusive Old Navy Blogger Subscription Program or Old Navy's PR agency and the $100 gift card that they provided.