Tag Archives: Anthony Costa

Cuff-links Fall 2013

6 innovative designers re-invent the men's accessory staple

CJ Dellatore Richard King Cufflinks

 Richard King ‘WhatToBuyNext.com’

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noun (usu. cuff-links) – a device for fastening together the sides of a shirt cuff, often decorative.

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A few weeks ago I received an email from a designer named Richard King, who specializes in cuff-links.  I investigated his website and discovered he crafts his cuff-links from vintage time piece guts.  He calls them ‘Time Tailored’, and I think they are true works of art.

And so now that polo shirt season is ending, I decided to research other designers who are creating stylish and unusual cuff-links.  I found 6 in total that are producing sets that any design professional will covet.

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Takohl Jewelry

Inspired designs from a heartland native

CJ Dellatore Kohl Treasure Ring

14 kt White Gold and Pink Sapphire ‘Treasure’ Ring

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A few weeks ago I was in NYC for a friend’s birthday dinner, and seated next to me was a woman with the most beautiful engagement ring and wedding band on her finger.  When I complimented her she told me everything she was wearing was from jewelry designer Tammy Kohl of Takohl Jewelry in Chicago.  The engagement ring was inspired by an antique piece from the 1920’s that her fiancé at the time took to Takohl, and the band split opened like a bagel, and had engraving on the inside.

When I got home I Googled Takohl Jewelry and discovered many amazing things about Tammy. The split ‘Treasure’ ring is a patented design, and she also coined the term ‘regemeration’ – which she has a copyright for – where by she takes any ring and reworks it to look newer and more modern.  I also learned that she commits a great deal of time to philanthropic work.

I called the company’s offices, and asked to speak with her.  We had a spirited chat about her most recent collection, and what inspires her unique designs.

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Fashion: Stephen Cirona

Tommy Bahama's Senior Vice President of Women's Sportswear

CJ Dellatore Tommy Bahama

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For many years we have all thought of Tommy Bahama as an iconic classic American label, but lately we have been seeing a change in the women’s division – due to the direction of the extremely talented and fashion forward Sr Vice President of Women’s Sportswear Stephen Cirona.

As a close personal friend for over thirty years I can attest that Stephen is not only one of the kindest individuals, but one of the most fashionable, creative, and smartest people I know.   His new vision has defiantly shined a new light on the Tommy Bahama woman, while keeping the same aesthetic the company has been known for the past 20 years.

I caught up with Stephen this week for a Q and A to learn a little bit about his career, and about the exciting new changes he has brought to Tommy Bahama.

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Fashion: London Men’s Fashion Week

the best of the Spring/Summer 2014 collections

CJ Dellatore Agi and Sam

 Agi & Sam

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For my review of this weeks Mens Spring/Summer 2014 shows in London I choose a different angle – instead of good or bad reviews I decided to select my personal favorite 20 looks, pieces that I feel are the most wearable clothes for the modern well dressed man.

The colors are jewel tones, brights and black.  The fit is easy, classy and tailored – from the street to the office to dinner.  These are the looks I predict will be the must-haves for Spring of next year.

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Fashion: Stephen Sprouse

a look a back at the American Punk legend

CJ Dellatore Stephen SprouseStephen Sprouse 

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“Stephen was a lot like the musicians he inspired and was inspired by.  His fashion pieces were his songs, each collection was an album; his work was the soundtrack to our lives.”

Michael Schmidt

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With the Metropolitan Museum of Arts retrospective Punk: Chaos to Couture being one of the must-see events this summer I was inspired to write about one the most talented American fashion designers of the movement.

When I think of punk I envision The Mudd Club NYC, Vivienne Westwood, The Sex Pistols, The Dead Kennedys, Blondie, my good friend and super talented jewelry and fashion designer Michael Schmidt, and of course punk legend Stephen Sprouse.

He is a designer we haven’t heard much about since his passing in 2004, but now with the amazing book by Mauricio and Roger Padilha of Mao PR titled ‘The Stephen Sprouse Book‘ his career is once again garnering attention.   I highly recommend it.

Sprouse brought us neon colors like no one else.  He did the skinny suit before Helmut Lang – and made graffiti, safety pins and camouflage prints high fashion.

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Fashion: Does Size Really Matter?

Thought on Abercrombie & Fitch's latest PR debacle

Abercrombie_Fitch_Logo

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This week Abercrombie & Fitch’s CEO Mike Jefferies was quoted in the press with some truly idiotic statements about his company’s sizing parameters for women.  Couple that news with the June issue of Vogue (which just dropped) featuring the voluptuous Kate Upton on the cover and I decided to write this post about how the real American woman feels about her size.

I have worked in retail, wholesale, and as a fashion buyer – and have always encouraged the companies I have worked for to purchase on a higher sizing arc due to the fact that 80% of the population of woman are above a size 8 – with an average at a size 14.

I have met thousands of very extremely fashionable woman in my life of all shapes and sizes, and unless health is an issue I would never conceive of criticizing any of them.  So with that being said I asked a few of my good friends and family members to chime-in on Jefferies’s statements, and to tell me about the retailers who they feel support the average sized woman.

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Fashion: Matin Maulawizada and Afghan Hands

A celebrated make-up artist and his philanthopic foundation

Angelina_Jolie

Angelina Jolie

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While I was researching another story for my post this week I came across a most impressive portfolio from a celebrated makeup artist named Matin Maulawizada.  I was instantly intrigued, so I called his agency, Timothy Priano, to find out more information.

It turns out he’s not only a very established artist, he is also the Global Artistry Director and Brand Ambassador for Laura Mercier cosmetics.  His list of celebrity clients reads like a roll call of the Academy Awards red carpet.  But that was not what interested me the most about Matin (he uses only his first name professionally), it was his philanthropic work with a foundation that he started called Afghan Hands.

Matin graciously agreed to talk with me by phone earlier this week.  I’d like to share the Q&A.

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Fashion: Kevin Johnn

The Project Runway Alumni on life pre and post reality TV

Kevin Johnn & HeidiKevin Johnn and Heidi Klum

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I met Kevin Johnn in 1987 when I moved from NYC to Chicago to be the buyer for Russo, one of the cities most progressive designer boutiques.  The store carried both European and American designers (including several local Chicago brands) and Kevin was one of the designers we bought. I remember his first collection, it was a navy and black medley of suit jackets, skirts, and shorts, as well as the perfect little black dress.  The jackets were sleeveless, some with cutouts and some backless, and if I am correct Kevin was one of the first to pair shorts with fitted sexy seamed jackets.  Nobody was doing that back then.

His vision today is just as on point as it was back then.  He has a superior eye for detail and seam work, and his draping skills are second to none.  Last week we had a chance to talk about life post Project Runway, what he’s up to now, and his plans for the future.

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