Saturday, March 31, 2012

Madame Butterfy-inspired fashions at Minnesota Opera kickoff

For most, the opera conjures ideas of old, white-haired rich folks tottering around with noses in air, and performers singing in Italian for hours about who-knows-what. Not exactly the most glamorous, exciting to-do in the world. But with last night's splashy fashion and art-infused kickoff event for the Minnesota Opera's upcoming eight-night run of Madame Butterfly hosted by the opera's young patrons membership group Tempo, held downtown Minneapolis at Seven Sushi Ultralounge, it was clear that this wasn't your grandma's opera. Puccini's classic tragedy clearly offered a depth of inspiration for local designers, who crafted impressively constructed looks in rich, sumptuous fabrics in a runway show impeccably styled by Grant Whittaker, who himself is known for a penchant for the theatrical. (His credits include costuming Ballet of the Dolls and styling fresh-from-New-York-Fashion-Week looks at the annual Macy's Glamorama blowout). As guests sipped on complimentary TEMPO-tinis, singers from the upcoming production previewed songs from the opera. Perfectly poised models provided by Vision Management Group walked in looks by Emma Berg, Russell Bourrienne, Samantha Rei Crossland (Blasphemina's Closet), Anna Lee (Ruby3), Kerry Riley (Needle & Black), and Jared Zachary (Freedom from Doubt), alongside newcomers Caroline Hayden, Tony Eliason, Lauren Mayhew, Sina Yi, and Hitomi K. It was an incredibly well-executed and realized showcase, only marred by the difficulty in seeing the looks as they whipped past at eye level. (At one point, I mistakenly thought the opera singers were a recording.) An elevated runway, or seating, could have helped. But the event was a beautifully executed one that made the point clear - that the opera could be not only stylish, but - dare we say - sexy.

Look by Emma Berg

Look by Anna Lee

Look by Jared Zachary

Look by Kerry Riley
Look by Samantha Rei Crossland

Look by Sina YiLook by Sina Yi

For tickets to the upcoming run of Madame Butterfly, visit the Minnesota Opera's site.

[Originally posted at

Monday, March 26, 2012

Preview: Danielle Everine's YSL-inspired collection at Denver Art Museum

As I reported a while back, local designer and Project Runway season nine darling Danielle Everine would be participating in the Yves Saint Laurent retrospective at the Denver Art Museum (the only U.S. museum to show the exhibition). Yesterday, the exhibition opened, and featured five looks by Everine inspired by the iconic Parisian designer along with a group of seven other PR alums. The collections will debut on March 30 with a full runway show at the museum, but for now you can preview two of Everine's looks in Denver-based publication 303 Magazine, photographed outside of the museum.

A full look at the previous design:

In other Everine news, she was interviewed in the latest issue of Lavender Magazine about her recent winter wedding. Click here to view it online.

Ashlee Walker walks for Dior at exclusive soiree in Teipei

Well how pretty is this: Vision Management Group's own model darling Ashlee Walker - the local "it" girl for the past couple of years in town - has walked for Christian Dior. Specifically, in Taipei on Saturday night for a "very private" dinner after the opening of a new Dior boutique.

Walker, furthest on right

The Dior blog reads, "At the end of the evening, the chinese singer Sandy Lam went on stage for a private concert and an exclusive fashion show presented the Autumn-Winter 2012-2013 ready-to-wear collection. For those who had already attended the Paris show earlier this month, the illusion was all the more powerful: it felt like they were still back in Paris, sitting in the refined setting for which the house is known. Last Saturday, especially for the inauguration of its boutique, D.I.O.R was enlightened the façade of the building : it was a striking image, and the first time the city has granted such an honor to anyone."

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Kevin Kramp knitwear featured in Red Models lookbook

Just a few days after announcing his move to Italy, Minnesota knitwear designer Kevin Kramp has released photos from a "PROJECT: RED" lookbook featuring some of the hottest new talents of RED MODELS NEW YORK, a project of photographer James Weber and fashion editor Fredo Montes (whose editorial work has appeared in publications such as L'officiel Hommes, dresstoKILL, Coitus, Fiasco, Carbon Copy and Genlux) - both of whom have frequently collaborated with Kramp (see: spreads in U Magazine, Fiasco Magazine, SID Magazine).

Monday, March 12, 2012

Kevin Kramp announces move to Italy to work for design brand Diesel

Some bittersweet news from local knitwear designer Kevin Kramp came in over the weekend: the Minnesota native is making the move to Italy to work for Diesel this month. It's not at all surprising, knowing the designer spent ten years working in New York and London before returning to Minnesota two years ago. Since then, he's shown as Milan and New York fashion weeks, received a prestigious ITS design award, and was featured in Vogue Italia and Belgium Elle as an "new talent." But despite his international renown, he embraced the Twin Cities fashion community, showing as part of MNfashion Week's "The Shows" in April 2011 (a collection that would later hit the Milan Fashion Week runway) and winning a Jerome Foundation grant that included an exhibition at the Textile Center, as well as creating custom garments for Minneapolis-via-Berlin avant-garde electronic pop group Dearling Physique. (On that note, keep your eyes out for the new Dearling Physique music video "Terrible Mind," featuring new knit costumes, set to release this spring.)

In a press release issued on Friday, Kramp says, "When I moved back from London in late 2009, I did not expect to remain in MN for very long. I am glad I did. I want to thank everyone for their enthusiastic support, dedicated help, and belief in my work. My work could not have reached as far without your help and passion. I am lucky and grateful to have been included by all of you here."

Video of Kevin Kramp's runway presentation at mark 0:54-1:58:

Kevin Kramp video promo for MNfashion Week's The Shows, April 2011:

Kevin Kramp from WHITE TRADE SHOW on Vimeo.

Dearling Physique 'Discipline Your Hands' from Dearling Physique on Vimeo.

Dearling Physique 'Up All Night' from Dearling Physique on Vimeo.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Ford signs Kris Humphries' sister Kaela to plus-size division

The nation first got to know Kaela Humphries as Kris' big sister on Keeping Up with the Kardashians. Now, the Minnesotan - a plus-size model - is making headlines for being signed to internationally renowned modeling agency Ford. Interestingly enough, Kaela's re-signing to Minneapolis agency Arquette & Associates was the crux of the recent premiere episode of CW modeling agency reality show Remodeled. Looks like her second brush with reality TV fame wasn't enough to keep her from the modeling big leagues.

Monday, March 5, 2012

Lookbook: Raul Osorio F/W 2011

I had the opportunity to help style the Fall/Winter 2011 capsule collection lookbook for local designer Raul Osorio this past weekend, outdoors in snowy Minnehaha Park. I styled the collection with jewelry from Stephanie Lake Design and a couple of Stephanie's own furs, as well as some bejeweled tights I stylized a while back.

Photos: Amy Gee
Clothing: Raul Osorio
Jewelry: Stephanie Lake Design
Hair/MUA: Julie Swenson
Styling: Jahna Peloquin
Model: Tearra

Minneapolis band Polica featured in Chloe's Paris Fashion Week show

The music of local band Poliça was featured in the runway for for French fashion house Chloé's Fall/Winter 2012/2013 collection earlier today at the Jardin des Tuileries during Paris Fashion Week. The news is not at all that surprising - but still very exciting. I can't imagine a better soundtrack to the fashion line's chic, moody, gorgeous collection.

Via @monkeytap
Submitted by

Friday, March 2, 2012

Preview: Raul Osorio F/W 2011 collection shoot

Love this ghostly Polaroid by Amy Gee from today's snowy outdoors shoot I styled with Stephanie Lake jewelry featuring Tearra in a dress from local designer Raul Osorio's Fall/Winter 2011 collection:

Askov Finlayson becomes first local retailer to sell Annie Larson's sweaters

After successfully selling out of her line of knit hats last fall, Askov Finlayson has become the first store in the Twin Cities (and one of only a handful of retailers in the world) to sell Annie Larson's limited-edition line of whimsical, brightly-patterned sweaters. The Minneapolis-turned-Brooklyn designer's line, ALL Knitwear, has received international acclaim as of late, including high-profile press in Time Out New York, Refinery29,, and Australian magazine YEN. Though the designer no longer calls Minneapolis home, it's nice to have a little bit of Annie back.