Here's a quick little article for those of you who didn't make it this year:
Sunday, November 22, 2009
Here's a quick little article for those of you who didn't make it this year:
Friday, November 13, 2009
Early fashion plates, and journals promoted the latest, the hottest, and chic-est in garments, so that the middle classes could emulate the aristocracy across Europe. The latest color, silhouette, trimming of ensembles for daytime and nighttime became watered down as each subsequent societal group interpreted fashion. Through the decades that followed this initial blast that became the borgeousie, each group began to identify itself via fabric, shape and designer. In this costume maelstrom of the 17th-18th centuries, the common man has emerged dressed as he chooses, according to his own style and taste.
Today, with the overwhelming freedom of choice in mens’ as well as in womens’ garb, costume can be, and is, often extremely individualistic. Post-hippie vintage merged into haute couture, and slid home with it’s ever popular resuscitation, manipulated bygone eras into iconic combinations that became recognize-able by their decade. The 1970’s revived the 1940’s , and the 1980’s translation of the shoulder has come home to haunt. We’re living in a moment of phoenix-like glory. The 1980’s , so obvious an influence in contemporary fashion has now bled into the dance, and other artistic camps.
The Metropolitan Opera is currently showing, to sellout crowds, the new production of “The Damnation of Faust”. Chock full of intent, the visual content is rampant with dancers, acrobats, costumed singers, and video projections. And that’s in just one scene.
The 1980’s should be culled for specificity, and elements extracted that morph into new interpretation. Any era can provide inspiration, but when we take everything available and throw it against the wall to see what sticks, we’re not designing, or interpreting.
Let the individuals of this new decade ahead take the centuries behind us and extract, or exhume, their favorites icons. The Dandies will live to tie another tie. Hollywood movie stars of the glam eras will drip another foxtail. The flappers of the 1920’s will pull down their cloches on a new era. The Victorians will again tweed us to death, and the embroideries of the Edwardian Arts and Crafts movement will once again be copied somewhere in India. Fashion lives in cycles no doubt, and art follows, but let the art and the fashion be refreshing in it’s newness. It’s the hope we live for.
Thursday, October 1, 2009
I'm sad to announce, via Mimi Weddell's press agent, that the lovely hatted one left us on Sept 24th. Here is her obituary:
WEDDELL, Mimi Rogers took a final bow and removed her hat for the last time on September 24, 2009 following a short illness. The first of four children born to Helen Stevens and Harold Rogers, Mimi made her debut on February 15, 1915 in Williston, ND. After exploring numerous cities, Mimi decided to settle in New York with husband Richard Weddell, an executive with what was then known as RCA Victor.
Exceptionally gracious and world-wise, Mimi was a working mother in an age when mothers did not work, especially mothers living on the Upper East Side of Manhattan. In her mid-sixties, upon the passing of her husband, she quit all her “day jobs” and with no children to support Mimi launched what would become an eclectic modeling and acting career. She loved the cameras and the lenses embraced her.
At 90 years old she was declared by New York Magazine as one of the “50 Most Beautiful New Yorkers”. She has appeared in over 25 movies,starting with the cult classic “Dracula’s Last Rites”, to “Hitch” and numerous television series including Sex in the City , Law and Order and practically all of the “soaps.”
Ms. Weddell was featured in Joyce Tenneson’s Book, Wise Women. She also found time to appear Off Broadway and traveled across country to join the casts of regional theatre groups. Mimi, who would never let her age get in the way of a casting call, appeared either on the cover or in editorial spreads in New York Magazine; Italian Vogue; Vogue and, of course, Vanity Fair. She worked with photographers, Richard Avedon,Mario Testino, Peter Lindbergh, Tim Walker, and Martin Hyers to name a few. Her lithe spirit was seen in many commercials and print ads for Juicy Couture, Burberry, Louis Vuitton and Nike ‘Just Do It’ campaign and others.
A few years back, Mimi caught the attention of Producer/Director Jyll Johnstone who decided Mimi’s remarkable life was a story worth telling. The result was the highly acclaimed 2008 documentary “Hats Off.” Mimi at last got top billing and in so doing launched the battle cry heard around the independent film industry: “90 is the New 40.”
Within the “industry,” Mimi was always known for her vast collection and endless array of hats. Her sense of style was legend. Grace Coddington, the Creative Director of Vogue Magazine remarked to Mimi's favorite fashion photographer, Tim Walker that she couldn't have styled Mimi any better than Mimi dresses herself.
Saturday, September 19, 2009
A deep sigh of exhaustion now exudes from my entire being. We're not quite over, but here's the deal:
Saturday, August 8, 2009
Saturday, June 20, 2009
Wearing a cobbler’s apron crafted by Hermes, Beth Levine made magic in her studio. Beyond shoes, the Levines (Beth, and her husband, Herbert) transformed American made footwear of the prosaic loafer era into a glamourous panoply of humorous, chic, and innovative pieces that remain iconoclastic even today.
Think of Marilyn Monroe in her Springolators….the name Beth Levine is stamped indelibly onto that image.
A virtuoso of shoe-dom, Beth Levine as the design force behind the Herbert Levine brand, influenced European style with her elegant creations. This glorious technicolor book tracks the Levines from their first post War shoe factory to their last run in 1975. Ad campaigns, publicity shots, pages from Vogue and Harper’s Bazaar fashion editorials lend imaginative background to the myth and the reality of the Levine shoe.
Best of all are the artistically photographed portraits of Beth’s shoes- details captured, nuance explained. Able to make inroads in experimental and futuristic shapes and materials, the Levines’ body of work affords a broad spectrum of design research. Theatre boots, encrusted with stones a la 18th Century; modernistic Kabuki “flats” that give a floating sensation; clear vinyl; heels crafted from curls of leather; pumps covered in peacock feathers: this book is a veritable library of shoe history. Written with appropriate quotes and quips, with a dynamic forward by Harold Koda, of the Metropolitan Museum, this is one of the most important costume books in the field since “Mode in Shoes” first appeared.
Tuesday, June 16, 2009
Wednesday, June 10, 2009
News on Ellen Christine's myspace :
Thursday, June 4, 2009
Denise & Hervé travaillent au développement du marketing dans cet endroit en proie à la créativité de Chelsea.
Peut-être d'ailleur avez-vous déjà pu les apercevoir, coiffés de leurs chapeaux favoris, un gangster fedora pour l'un et une cloche des années 20 pour l'autre, arpentant les rues New Yorkaise avec une grosse boîte à chapeaux.
C'est maintenant après avoir pris leurs marques au sein de l'entreprise en réalisant une opération pour le May Madness du S3 group qu'ils s'attanquent au développement de la griffe au sein de la grosse pomme.
Objectif, ne plus voir une seule tête nue ou qui ne saurait pas où l'on trouve les chapeaux les plus extravagants et sophistiqués de New York.
Vous allez pouvoir retrouver en ligne plus d'épisode de " Hat Tales" et encore bien d'autres projets.
Alors restez bien attentifs, dans un mois ils nous quittent, peut-être nous réservent-ils encore des surprises qui sait ... ?
Since the beginning of May, two French students who are studying International Trade in Jean Lurçat in Paris began their internship in the New York boutique, Ellen Christine Millinery.
Denise & Hervé are working on marketing development in this place full of Chelsea creativity. You may already have seen them wearing their favorite hats, a gangster fedora for one and a 1920’s cloche for the other, walking through the streets of New York City with a big hat box.
They have just finished the project for May Madness (S3 group) and now they are ready to attack their plan to further integrate the Ellen Christine label into the Big Apple.
The goal: no more naked heads and letting people know where to find the most extravagant and sophisticated hats of NY
You will find further episodes of “Hat Tales” online and more projects to come.
So pay attention, in one month they are leaving us so who knows what surprises they have in store?
Sunday, May 10, 2009
Dear people who have spent money in my shop? Dear hat-loving folk who have commisserated with me over felt, silk, or sculpted straw?
Thursday, April 9, 2009
Come one, come all, and join the festivities on Fifth. Avenue, that is, come Sunday, as the Milliners Guild unites en masse, to reclaim the fashionable airs of Easter Sunday outside of St. Patrick's Cathedral.
Sunday, April 5, 2009
Especially, for laughs, both sophomoric, and real, go see "The Toxic Avenger".
Tuesday, March 31, 2009
Tuesday, March 24, 2009
When I started in the millinery business in New York City, my friend, Andrew, sent me to Albrizio Millinery to block my hats. This was entre into one of the most important hat housesin the city. They make hats for the Metropolitan Opera, for theatre, for top designers in the business. The name Albrizio is known in the church lady circles, in the rap world, in fashion because they have their own label, as well as allowing those of us who design hats, to use their facilities.
Sunday, March 22, 2009
In the Northeast, we're really trying to get into Spring. the easy dresses are coming out, orders are coming in for Ascot. Mothers of the Bride are getting nervous about what they may be wearing on their heads. Easter and Passover are just around the corner.
Saturday, March 21, 2009
Theme parties are the bane of my existence. Any number of people come into Ellen Christine and ask for a "1920's" headpiece, or an Audrey Hepburn something. Most contemporary body types wouldn't like themselves as flappers, and couldn't carry off the deer-caught-in-the-headlights innocence that Miss Hepburn projected. To show them a beaded headband, trimmed in a spray of feathers, that we just happen to have on hand is usually a frustrating experience for me as an artist, and my assistants as salespeople. To wrap your head around a 1920's turban look, or a feathered accessory is difficult unless you're an actress, or an otherwise imagination-infused individual. Probably a warm up exercise should happen before people go out shopping , into a world they know nothing about, and can't easily grasp without a personal shopper, or a costume consultant.
Thursday, March 19, 2009
We take celebrities to heart in New York City. They are our World Bank, our 6 Degrees of Separation from fame and glory, our Muses. On any given day in a Starbucks, a Barnes and Noble, or just walking around the corner, you may run into Harrison Ford, Sarah Jessica Parker, or Liam Neeson. There may be a fleet of trailers lining your street, as another scene from a film or a television series is being shot. Your favorite celeb might be out for a walk, or on his way to buy a hat.
Wednesday, March 18, 2009
The magic of the Met happens, and you're not aware of being transported in an out of body experience, but suddenly, the lights come up and you're back.
Saturday, March 14, 2009
What to do when the dog has ran off into the lake with your favorite Montecristi panama hat? How do you deal with a rain-soaked felt Borsalino? After you pull your favorite hat out of that mud puddle, what do you do now?
Thursday, March 12, 2009
Once in a while something comes along on TV that gets me hooked. I'll admit it: The Real Housewives of New York City has dug it's talons into me. I follow the series, I Facebook, I read their blogs. Maybe because it's New York, and I'm here, too...who knows? My friends aren't like this.......their egos aren't this fragile, their apartments so perfect, their pools so blue. We are a bit of an alternative group, my friends and I....we dress accordingly to our own whimsical, eccentric poetry of the moment. We don't hang at the Hamptons.......who'd want to? Our husbands don't have lucrative businesses that support our projects. Well, most of them don't.
Saturday, February 14, 2009
Here's the procedure, if you plan, think ahead and act like a Virgo:
Friday, February 13, 2009
Gird your loins, kids, Loris Diran has launched, his store is open, and his fashion show is getting rave reviews for the collection.
Saturday, January 31, 2009
.ahh, February.......before we dive into Fashion Week, we must make some time for the brides. They come to the shop in Chelsea from December onwards, hunting and foraging, seeking their perfect headpiece, veil, accessory......or just an idea to spark their imagination. Ellen Christine Millinery is honored by chic magazines around the globe, with coverage and pictures of some of our creations. Online, the site (www.ellenchristine.com) pulls in brides from an international market.
Wednesday, January 28, 2009
Last night my friend, Andrew, took me to see Rigoletto at the Metropolitan Opera, in New York City. It's Verdi, so it's a rich, baroque libretto. The set ain't bad, either. The Set and the costume design were done by Zack Brown, in 1989, and it's not the first time I've seen this production. With lush gilt details on their jackets, the men look as gorgeous as the females amid the columns of the Duke's palace . The women sport golden cages and Renaissance-inspired headpieces( that we may or may not call hats) on their hears, in rich colors that add to the glow on the stage.
Wednesday, January 21, 2009
It's that time of year. If there's snow on the ground in New York City, it must mean the opening of the annual Winter Antiques Show......now in it's 55th glorious year, this show is the premier gathering of cognoscenti in the antiques world. From the world over, purveyors and collectors alike huddle over a rare book, coo into the doors of an even rarer sideboard, and ogle ridiculously rare jewels that date as far back as B.C.
Saturday, January 17, 2009
...Much to our surprise, we've been included in the twenty recipients of the first Annual Hatty Award. The award is given by the publishers of Hatlife, known in the trade for it's consistent coverage of the millinery industry.
Friday, January 2, 2009
Happy New Year, to one and all. If you were outside in New York on New Year's Eve, I do hope you've thawed out by now!