Cut On Your Bias

Is fashion art? Can art be fashion? These debates never seem to end, but the influence of art on fashion just can’t be denied.

Here we look at some of our favorite art meets fashion moments from literal interpretations to alleged vandalism.

The great Yves St. Laurent found inspiration in Mondrian’s Composition of Red, Blue, and Yellow (1930) for this day dress that he showed Fall 1965.

Yves St. Laurent

Today, designers continue to showcase artist’s work, just as Karla Spetic did when she utilized the artwork of Roy Lichtenstein to create bold prints, which made its debut in her Fall 2012 collection.

Karla Spetic

Narciso Rodriguez, Carolina Herrera, and Derek Lam have utilized the simple, functional lines found in the work belonging to the Bauhaus movement in their Spring 2012 collections.

Narciso Rodriguez

Recently, however, art and fashion have developed a new relationship following the alleged vandalism of the Marc Jacobs store in Soho, New York. French street artist and apparent anti-capitalist, Kidult, graffitied the word “Art” across the front of the shop.

Marc Jacobs Store

And to retaliate? Marc Jacobs placed a photo on a T-shirt retailing at $689. The kicker? Marc is selling a signed copy of the shirt by the artist for $680!

Marc Jacobs Tee

 

 

 

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We had the chance to connect with the amazing fashion blogger Kimberlee Van Der Wall from I Have A Degree In This!, to discuss the influence of film on fashion, her plans for her upcoming blogaversary party and shopping in the children’s section.

Cut On Your Bias: What led you to begin your blog?

Kimberlee Van Der Wall: I attended the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising in LA and continued at LIM College here in New York City. I would get a lot of ridiculous questions about what I studied from people assuming that fashion students weren’t serious. For example, people would sarcastically ask if I was enrolled in classes with names like “Polka Dots 101.”  I really wanted to put that myth to rest with I Have A Degree In This!

Cut On Your Bias: What do you like about Cut On Your Bias?

Kimberlee Van Der Wall: I love supporting up and coming designers. It’s a fun and interactive site that is easy to use. Fashion never gets boring to me so I really love that each time I visit, I feel inspired!

Cut On Your Bias: Which styles did you vote for at Cut On Your Bias in the Jane Oh collection, and why?

Kimberlee Van Der Wall: I voted for the skirt vs the shorts because I thought the skirt has a Mad Men feel. I opted for the biker jacket because that’s my style preference, and I went for the asymmetrical top because I thought it would be more flattering for more body types.

Cut On Your Bias: As a fashion blogger, what are your readers most interested in learning about, and where do you find that they are getting information aside from you?

Kimberlee Van Der Wall: I think my readers are interested in learning about how to translate looks from the runway. We all admire designer looks but can’t necessarily afford them. My readers also enjoy my nail art posts (haha). If they’re not reading my blog, then they are probably reading StyleCaster, Refinery 29 or other fashion blogs that I’ve recommended.

Cut On Your Bias: How would you describe your personal style, and is being petite a challenge when shopping?  If so, how have you solved that challenge?

Kimberlee Van Der Wall: I’ve always been a tomboy. As I’ve gotten older, I’ve softened my look but still maintain some edge. I love skulls and anything studded! Being petite is definitely a challenge, but it forces you to be creative. You really need to know what works on you. I appreciate when stores have petite sections, and I even shop in the kid’s section sometimes.

Cut On Your Bias: Who are your favorite designers, and what do you think the upcoming trends will be?

Kimberlee Van Der Wall: That’s like picking your favorite child! I love them all and admire what they do. I really think the upcoming Great Gatsby film directed by Baz Luhrmann is going to have a major influence on fashion. Flapper styles have come in and out, but I think they are here to stay for Fall 2012 into Spring 2013.

Cut On Your Bias: What’s your dream outfit?

Kimberlee Van Der Wall: Oh that’s tough! I’ve always loved how sexy a woman looks in a suit. I’m having a vision for my upcoming blogaversary party of me in a white tuxedo pants with an ivory tuxedo jacket with black lapels. Red lipstick and retro hair to match – of course!

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Blessed with a keen sensibility and acute eye for detail, Jane Oh is an architect of proportion, mastering the body’s lines and consummate structures. Her spare silhouettes emanate nostalgia and polish. A veteran of Marc Jacobs and Michael Kors, she launched her eponymous collection in 2010.

Cut On Your Bias: How did you decide to make a career of design? What challenges did you face when branching out on your own?

Jane Oh: I love designing and making clothes, so I launched my collection in Fall of 2010. Designing was the fun and easy part. Finding the right people to help bring my designs to life was challenging because I’m a total perfectionist. I worked almost everyday from 9-6 and then designed in the evenings with a glass of wine until 3 in the morning sometimes…and I loved every second of it. I have no complaints working that way. It was fun!

Cut On Your Bias: What excites you most about partnering with Cut On Your Bias?

Jane Oh: I think it’s a cool concept, and it’s something new. People vote, and I see what they want/like. I get to see different perspectives, and I’m all about learning how people react.  And the team at Cut On Your Bias is very cool, and I think they are delightful.

Cut On Your BiasHow have you evolved as a designer? How did working at Marc Jacobs and Michael Kors influence your design aesthetic?

Jane Oh: I’m learning what women want constantly from all different shapes, sizes, and cultures. At the end of the day, my woman wants to look well put together and feel good and confident. I really respect Marc Jacobs as a designer. He does what he wants and is super innovative. I think that influence helps me create what I want instead of following trends. I worked as an intern for Michael Kors shoes. His aesthetic is clean and minimal, which I love. But it’s really people I meet and different places I travel that influence my design aesthetic.

Cut On Your BiasDo you have a process when thinking ahead to a new season? What steps do you take when beginning a new collection?

Jane Oh: I find music that inspires me. I probably listened to Adele’s “19″ album close to 300 times while designing and working on my first collection.  I look at old books, I travel, go to museums or go to gardens. I like to people watch and imagine clothes that will make them look their best. I really love drinking red wine while I’m designing.

Cut On Your BiasWhat led you to be based in LA?

Jane Oh: I was born and raised in LA, and my family and two dogs are here. I had a love/hate relationship with this place after moving back from New York. I love NYC, and I love that my work requires me to travel there often, but I like that I can get in my car and visit my family and drive on the PCH when I need a breather.

Cut On Your BiasWhat’s next for Jane Oh Designs?

Jane Oh: I’m currently working on Spring 2013. I just got back from Seoul, and it was so beautiful and green since it rained right before I got there. Out of the 400 pictures I took while I was there, half of them were of beautiful, vibrant flowers all over the city…


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Designer Christine Alcalay

Designer Christine Alcalay gives us insight into her influences and inspiration, her new collection, and some of the challenges the designer faced as she branched out on her own.

Cut On Your Bias:  What excites you most about partnering with Cut On Your Bias and allowing your customers to be involved in the design process?

Christine Alcalay:  I love the concept behind Cut On Your Bias. I feel as though fashion hit a hiatus about 20 years ago and it has been hard for it to bounce back. With social media, bloggers, and people taking the voice of expression into their own hands it only makes sense that it would be very smart for a label to have design decisions be a part of the conversation with their customer. Cut On Your Bias provides a platform for customers to make design decisions not available elsewhere. The point of design is to get the people into the clothes. How incredible it is for the consumer to make these choices and then the capability of owning something they are a part of. It seems perfect for my customer who is not interested in cookie cutter clothes sold in a cookie cutter way.

Cut On Your Bias:  What sparked your interest in fashion?  What were some of the first things you designed?

Christine Alcalay:  When my mother and I arrived in NYC after emigrating from Vietnam our family was immersed into a variety of different trades. We worked late nights as a family stringing pearls, stuffing envelopes, and later moved on to sewing simple garments. As the years progressed and because there was a lack of income in our family to hire someone to take care of me, I spent many days assisting my mom in the sweatshops. I learned about garment construction at the same time that I was picking up my mother tongue and English.

My first few projects were for a Barbie doll I was given. I cut black lace and black velvet and made her a pair of skinny leggings complete with an elastic waistband. My creativity didn’t stop there. I was known to cut pieces of my clothes off if I didn’t feel they were attractive. There were sometimes sleeves missing or pockets detached if I was left alone. I have always been an entrepreneur. At the age of nine, when scrunchies were all the rage, I frequented my local fabric shop once a week and bought 1/4 yard swatches to make scrunchies in silk prints, rayon velvet, and wool tweeds. I sold them to my classmates starting at two dollars for something simple. To help make each hair tie custom and special, I gave my customers the option of hand-sewn beading that varied from pearls to glass or metallic beads. With these special details, I sometimes tacked on an extra few dollars bringing them up to five dollars. The news spread across my elementary school and before I knew it every single girl and teacher in my school had an original Christine Alcalay scrunchie. Still to this day I laugh when I come across a fabric hair tie.

Cut On Your Bias:  Where do you go and what do you do when looking for inspiration?

Christine Alcalay:  I am always looking beyond the current season I am designing. For example, I have already picked two fabrics I have fallen in love with for fall of 2013 while working on spring/summer 2013. My inspiration varies from movies and art to textile to history to food but at the basis it all goes back to for whom I am designing. I start my collection deciding on what I want the final image (photograph or lookbook) to be. I ask myself questions about how the woman feels when she wears these clothes. What are the colors she is drawn to at that time of year? How is she wearing her hair and what music is she listening to? If I were to take her photo, where is she standing when I capture her? … Etc. It goes far beyond the clothing but also evokes a feeling and emotion. The reason for this is because my customer is interested many things. She has an eclectic sense of art and fashion. She loves experimentation but also appreciates classic beauty and simplicity. From season to season she changes her lipstick color and changes with fashion because it is fun. She is fully aware that changing her clothing does not change who she is but only the perspective in which the world sees her. She is inspired and confident. I look into myself quite often to find an entire collection staring back at me. The rest of the process is excitement – putting the puzzle pieces together to get the final image.

So the question is where do I go for inspiration- I go wherever my muse takes me but I start with where I picture her in the end of the process. Photography inspires me, the people I work with inspire me, people on the streets inspire me, weather and its changes inspire me.

Cut On Your Bias:  How did your experience working at Lacroix influence you as a designer?  How has NYC and NY fashion influenced your design aesthetic?

Christine Alcalay:  Paris has a huge impact on my design aesthetic. Women in Paris have a certain “je ne sais quoi.” While I was in Paris, I studied the women and how they dressed. The greatest opportunity was a short internship with Christian Lacroix. It was there that I felt I learned the difference between the clothes we wear and the haute couture articles of clothing made there. I understood the love of craft and skill. I take that experience with me as I work on my own collections. I don’t take short cuts and I am rarely completely satisfied. What I learned during my internship is that this was all part of my creative process.

I took my observation and brought it back to NYC. We have the best people watching in the world here. In this fast paced city where everything is literally at your fingertips, I find my inspiration cycles very quickly. NYC is the only place in the world where as soon as you’ve thought it – it’s already old. It keeps me on my toes by forcing me to see beyond the season I’m designing.

Photo Credit - Lauren Garroni

Cut On Your Bias:  What were some of the challenges you faced when starting your own collection?

Christine Alcalay:  As a designer based in NYC, I am dedicated to making my collection in NYC. The garment industry here is rapidly changing, and it’s very difficult to find the right people with whom to work. Clothes produced in NYC are more expensive than overseas but I am dedicated to keeping my work here and giving back to the NYC garment industry that inspired me in the first place. Being a newer designer, I find it hard to find the right resources and then get noticed.


Cut On Your Bias:  Your collection is so cohesive and offers such a unique and bold perspective.  When you design, who are you designing for or what are you looking to capture or express?

Christine Alcalay:  My customer is very bold, confident, and strong in an ultra-feminine and quiet way.  She likes to express herself through clothing and tends to have many varying garments in her closet tailored to her mood. She is sophisticated and loves to play dress up. It is only natural that the clothes I design are made to make a woman feel as though they can take over the world and evoke strength.


 

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Patty and Christine Yoon

Patty and Christine Yoon are the masterminds behind one of the hottest up and coming brands in NYC, BHON. Their relaxed silhouettes and supple fabrics allow for an easy elegance that easily translates from day to night. Cut On Your Bias had a chance to catch up with the design duo to learn more.

What was the inspiration for the BHON collection?

PATTY: For BHON Spring 2012, we were inspired by Louise Bourgeois’ incredible sculptures and two-tone drawings, particularly the famous maman spider, the woven child, and her insomnia drawings.

CHRISTINE: Louise Bourgeois’ work has the ability to appear both hard and fixed, while also portraying fluidity and emotion. In the end, we feel that the BHON collection reflects some structural elements of her work while also embodying the movement felt in her sculptures.

Louise Bourgeois and her sculptures

Your pieces have a relaxed elegance. Where do you see them being worn?

PATTY: With BHON we create pieces we would wear anywhere: to work, and then to events after work, over the weekend, on vacation etc. Our designs can be dressed up or dressed down depending on how you style them.

CHRISTINE: Neither of us is high-maintenance, so we design collections with versatile pieces that suit lifestyles like ours, where you may not know where the next bicycle/subway/cab ride will take you, but you want to look good no matter where you end up.

Who are your design inspirations?

PATTY: I love, love, love Mary Katranzou and her amazing use of prints. Her fall 2012 collection blew my mind. I also love L.D. Tuttle (I own 6 pairs of her shoes!) She uses such great details, silhouettes and unexpected details in her shoes, so each pair feels so special. Junya Watanabe is a long time favorite of mine. His exploration of a concept/theme and then working it out in so many different ways each season is really inspirational.

CHRISTINE: Louis Kahn is one of the first that comes to mind for me. He managed to create beautiful, moving spaces with the simplest and most robust materials.

What one item of clothing could you not live without?

PATTY: This one is hard! Hmm… A really good pair of leggings. Close runner up is a fantastic winter coat. It should be roomy enough to layer, light enough to wear on its own when a little warmer and able to be dressed up or down depending on the occasion. Yes, I own one, and I live in it all winter.

CHRISTINE: I’m more of a tomboy, and I need a good, solid, no frills pair of jeans. I’ve been wearing Levi’s for a long time, and would be walking around in my underoos without them.

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We’re excited to reveal the final designs for Carlos Campos’ Cut On Your Bias capsule collection. The four-piece, limited-edition range includes a jacket, polo, pair of shorts and button-down shirt. See the full run-down below and shop the styles:

Jacket ($550): A lightweight, double-breasted trench with exquisite design touches in inky navy blue. Made from 100 percent Pima cotton canvas, with bright-orange silk lining, military-inspired flap pockets, and ribbed storm cuffs. Metal trims in antique bronze finish.

Polo ($105): An updated classic. The slim-fit polo is made from sky blue 100 percent Pima Cotton Pique.

 

Woven Shirt ($170): A basic with edge. The slim-fit, tailored button-down comes in sky blue with a black-printed pattern. The garment includes pleats on the back yoke for comfort.

Shorts ($155): The perfect shorts for summer in the city and weekends away. Design includes Carlos Campos’ signature diagonal seam detail on the leg and self belt. The distinctive silhouette includes slant pockets on the front and welt pockets on the back.

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Oscar De La Renta is updating the inspiration board for the digital age. Moodboards, image collages used as reference for a collection, have become a staple of online fashion media in recent years, allowing style-obsessed observers to gain a deeper understanding of a designer’s creative process.

De La Renta has decided to turn that process upside down and crowd-source the inspiration for his Resort 2013 collection. Perhaps following the success of Pinterest, the designer just launched his own scrap-booking platform, The Board, which allows users to upload videos and photos to create a digital moodboard for the collection.

The move reflects a larger shift: designers have never been more willing to engage directly with fans and open up the design process. Earlier this year, Nicola Formichetti documented the preparations for his Thierry Mugler menswear show on Facebook to build excitement for the collection and elicit user feedback. “Showing everyone the craziness just makes sense,” Formichetti told WWD. “They want to be a part and see the madness, and honestly I wouldn’t mind having a million little stylists giving me their input. It feels totally next level for us.”

The New York City-based label Bhon has also given its fans the opportunity to make decision choices on limited-edition pieces by partnering with Cut On Your Bias. Designs will be finalized on Tuesday, March 13th, so don’t miss your chance to vote.

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Earlier this month, Cut On Your Bias celebrated its launch at Artware Editions on the Bowery in New York City.

Partner designers Hyden Yoo, Carlos Campos, Tawfik Mounayer of Tribune Standard, and Patty Yoon of BHON mingled with the Cut On Your Bias team, friends, and fashion industry professionals.

Watch the video to see interviews with the designers and Cut On Your Bias founder Louis Monoyudis.

 

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We’re pleased to welcome Bhon to Cut On Your Bias as our latest designer partner.

Since launching in 2010, the young label has been featured in Nylon, Elle, DailyCandy, Nu-Mode, and other publications.

The New York City-based brand earned critical acclaim and a cult following by designing wearable, closet-friendly pieces informed by a conceptual aesthetic.

In December 2011, Elle wrote that Bhon “excelled at creating pieces that are both architectural and wearable, from draped work shorts to graphic maxi-dresses.”

Bhon is giving you a chance to help design their limited-edition range for Cut On Your Bias. The capsule collection will include a top, dress, shorts, and wrap. Voting is live now, and winners will be announced next week.

Click through to play designer or learn more about Bhon.

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