For Your Fashion [4]

picUgly is the new Beautiful

The hit show Ugly Betty is in full swing with its second (not to mention star studded) season. So far, fashion designer Kenneth Cole has appeared as the honoree of the “Black and White Ball” hosted by the Meade family. But the special appearances do not stop there. James Van Der Beek, known for his acting in Dawson’s Creek, plays an advertiser who pressures Daniel, the editor-in-chief, into firing his co-editor and sister Alexis, or he will pull his ad campaign from MODE magazine. The issue of discrimination against transgenders is the reason for this pressure and ultimately Daniel chooses between his obligation to the magazine and his obligation to his family. Also, Victor Garber plays Betty’s writing professor reminiscent of his role in Legally Blonde as Elle’s professor. Next Thursday, Michael Urie’s character Marc gets a significant other. Who? How? That, you’ll have to wait and see.

Mark your calendars! On November 8th, Ugly Betty’s biggest star studded episode, “It’s a nice day for a Posh wedding,” will air. Ever since her arrival, Victoria Beckham has been in the spotlight; because of this, she has been cast to play herself (as Wilhelmina’s bridesmaid) in the upcoming wedding episode. Vera Wang, wedding dress designer extraordinaire herself, will also appear in the episode.

The future of Ugly Betty only promises to be bigger and bolder. There are plans to bring back Kristin Chenoweth (the dentist’s assistant) for another episode and the audience will also get to meet Wilhelmina’s mother, Victoria Smith-Slater who will be played by Betty White. It is also said that Simon Cowell will guest star in one episode. As for the immediate future, Daniel will get involved with Marlo Thomas who will play an ad executive.

There is so much more I could say, but this is merely a sneak peak. This season’s Ugly Betty seems like it will not disappoint us.

Ugly Betty is not just good entertainment. It’s a show that at first seems to be only about the competitive, superficial world of fashion, but really is something more. The fashion magazine represents dreams. Betty is from Queens and is too “ugly” to be in fashion but she is given a chance to work for MODE magazine and a chance to pursue her future in writing. Although she faces adversity to the greatest extent, her heart of gold and strong will helps her to wake up everyday and look forward to something. She is the embodiment of the idea of being “beautiful in the inside” and she shows that having a lot of heart and accepting yourself will help even in the harsh demanding world (of fashion). Speaking of acceptance, Ugly Betty teaches tolerance. This show takes place in the world of fashion, where someone who is a transgender or someone who is homosexual is accepted. After all, some fashion designers such as Tom Ford and Marc Jacobs are homosexual but that doesn’t make them any less brilliant and amazing at what they do. According to this show, Ugly (or being different) is the new beautiful.

Either you’re in, or you’re out

On November 14th, the model, the experts, the designers are back. I’m talking about supermodel host Heidi Klum, Tim Gunn, Michael Kors, Nina Garcia and the newest cast of designers. Project Runway hasn’t aired in awhile, and I hope it’s because this season will be the best out of the four seasons. Meet the potential next great American designers! (In alphabetical order)

AGE: 37 HOMETOWN: Charlotte, NC
EDUCATION: Architecture at Savannah College of Art & Design
FAVORITE DESIGNERS: Tracy Reece, Epperson and Byron Lars
FASHION MUST: A fantastic shawl or scarf that can be worn in many different ways

Interesting fact: In high school, she began taking fashion merchandising courses through the DECA Club and competed in a regional contest for fashion marketing and branding.

At East there is DECA, the same DECA as mentioned above. I, in fact, am doing the same thing Carmen did years ago. If you are planning to do the same, I guess I have some competition!

AGE: 44 HOMETOWN: San Francisco, CA
EDUCATION: Self-taught
FASHION MUST: Bright-colored anything

Interesting fact: Without any formal costume or fashion education, he earned an impressive client list. Chris has created looks and styles for many designers that have appeared on “Entertainment Tonight,” “Martha Stewart,” “Rachael Ray,” “Tyra,” E! and MTV.

AGE: 21 HOMETOWN: Annapolis, MD
EDUCATION: Baltimore School For The Arts and The American Intercontinental University, London
FAVORITE DESIGNERS: McQueen and Westwood
FASHION MUST: Amazing jacket or blazer

Interesting fact: Christian is the youngest of the contestants in season four.

I can’t wait to see what he can do at such a young age, considering one of the past contestants Daniel Vosovic impressed the judges fresh out of college.

EDUCATION: Master of Fine Arts in Combined Media with an emphasis on sculpture, performance and installation from the University of Arizona, Tucson
FAVORITE DESIGNERS: Erte, Jean Cocteau, Madame Gris, Zaldy, Norma Kamali
FASHION MUST: A great pair of boots

Interesting facts: Vogue discovered Elisa and acknowledged her as one of the top 10 American Designers in the independent realm.

AGE: 38 HOMETOWN: Seattle, WA
EDUCATION: University of California at Berkeley with a double degree in Fine Arts and Sociology and Parsons School of design
FAVORITE DESIGNERS: Diane Von Furstenberg, Alexander McQueen (For Men)
FASHION MUST: A sugar daddy

Interesting facts: Jack is a swimmer, model and fashion designer and he graduated from the University of California at Berkeley with a double degree in Fine Arts and Sociology.

I think its interesting how he went to Berkeley and is now involved with fashion.

AGE: 26 HOMETOWN: Long Island, NY
EDUCATION: Parsons School of Design
FAVORITE DESIGNERS: Nicolas Ghesquiere for Balanciaga and Azzedine Alaia
FASHION MUST: A sweater dress (ideally with pockets hidden in the side seams) worn with opaque colored tights

Interesting facts: While at Parsons, she was honored with the CFDA scholarship award and selected to design the Perrier girl uniform, which was featured as “Parsons Design Star” on the MTV college network. One day she dreams of creating a fashion empire of her own instead of being “just another name on the tag of another dress.”

AGE: 30 HOMETOWN: Fairfield, NJ
EDUCATION: Fashion Institute of Technology, New York
FAVORITE DESIGNERS: Alexander McQueen, Jean-Paul Gaultier
FASHION MUST: Cool vintage boots

Interesting facts: Kevin studied at New York City’s Fashion Institute of Technology, where he won the “Menswear Designer of the Year” grant. Kevin’s collections have sold to approximately 200 boutiques nationwide and his collection debuted on the cover of the Victoria’s Secret Fall 2006 catalogue.

He’s from Jersey!

Kit (Christina)
AGE: 26 HOMETOWN: Los Angeles, CA
EDUCATION: Fashion Institute of Technology, New York and Polimoda Institute of Fashion Design and Marketing, Italy
FASHION MUST: Balenciaga fringed scarf

Interesting facts: A freelance wardrobe stylist and designer of her own line, Kit Pistol™ in Los Angeles, Kit, creates one-of-a-kind pieces for private clients and is currently working on her first ready-to-wear collection.

EDUCATION: Parsons School of Design, New York
FAVORITE DESIGNERS: Viktor & Rolf and Hussein Chalayan
FASHION MUST: Thin stretch suspenders

Interesting facts: Marion has shown his collection for several seasons in New York City and his clothing has been featured in “Bazaar” and “Cosmopolitan.” Marion’s designs are favorites of New York stylists and used for editorial .

AGE: 31 HOMETOWN: Ramallah, West Bank
EDUCATION: Brooks College in California
FAVORITE DESIGNERS: Alexander McQueen, Victor & Rolf, Olivier Theyskens
FASHION MUST: A hot pair of leather boots

Interesting facts: Born in the city of Jerusalem, Rami left his hometown soon after graduating from high school and moved to the United States in pursuit of his childhood dream to one day become a fashion designer. Known for his dramatic red carpet gowns, Rami has dressed celebrities such as Jessica Alba, Fergie, Tyra Banks, Amy Smart, Lucy Liu, Lindsay Lohan, Paris Hilton, and Penelope Cruz. His designs have been seen on the pages of In Style, Vogue, Lucky, Elle, People and Us Weekly. Rami was also commissioned to design the costumes for the March 2005 America’s Next Top Model ad campaign that was shown on billboards across the nation.

AGE: 35 HOMETOWN: Escondido, CA
EDUCATION: California State University, Long Beach

Interesting facts: Born as number 12 of 14 children, Ricky, owes much of his fashion inspiration and success to his Mexican parents. At an early age, he watched his mother sew and became fascinated with what she could create from a flat piece of fabric. He started as an assistant designer for the Valentino label before fine-tuning his skills under the Oscar de la Renta lingerie line. Later, he headed the launch of the Vera Wang lingerie line.

AGE: 32 HOMETOWN: San Francisco, CA
EDUCATION: Parsons School of Design, Paris
FASHION MUST: Organic wool and cashmere

Interesting facts: Simone currently resides in Los Angeles and is designing custom pieces, as well as TS BLOOM, her collection of women’s wear using organic and surplus fabrics.

Going Green is very big right now and I think it’s great she uses organic fabrics

AGE: 30 HOMETOWN: Chicago, IL
EDUCATION: Chicago’s Columbia College
FASHION MUST: A cardinal red trench coat

Interesting facts: Steven does not have formal design training, but his passion and curiosity for all things fashionable have made him a rising star in Chicago’s design community. His centers on natural fabrics that bring a simple, yet elegant, perspective to women’s day wear. Steven hopes to rid the fashion world of non-natural fabric and take day dresses to a level every woman would want.

Sweet P (Kathleen)
AGE: 46 HOMETOWN: Los Angeles, CA
EDUCATION: Los Angeles Trade Technical College
FAVORITE DESIGNERS: Prada, John Galliano, Marni, Chloe, Phillip Lim, Balenciaga

Interesting facts: Sweet P got her nickname while riding in an all girl motorcycle club called the Hells Belles. Sweet P’s first collection will be available in February 2008.

AGE: 34 HOMETOWN: Seoul, Korea
EDUCATION: University of Chicago
FAVORITE DESIGNERS: Ghesquiere, Elbaz, Marc Jacobs
FASHION MUST: Patent leather ankle boots & colorful tights
Interesting facts: At first she worked as a journalist from Paris to Brussels (in Belgium) but one day woke up and realized she wanted to start a career in fashion, and so she did. Victorya lives and works in New York City, designing clothes under her label na•be (which means butterfly) and creating clothes that she women like her would want to wear.

Lately a lot of Asian designers have been taking the fashion scene by storm, like Doo-ri Chung, Phillip Lim, and more and so I can’t wait to see what Victorya can do.


Unlike Ugly Betty, Project Runway is real. However, it is easy to see how fashion plays a role in so many lives and how so many people wanted to be a part of it. Whether it may be modeling, costume designing or fashion designing, the contestants of Project Runway show that although they come from different backgrounds and beginnings, fashion has changed their life and has brought them together on the show that will bring even more opportunities. To read full biographies of the cast, visit

Weekly fashion report

– The documentary of the iconic fashion designer Karl Lagerfeld was released on October 10 in France but it is said to come to the United States on October 24th. Documentaries are often boring but Lagerfeld will do anything but bore with his witty remarks.

– In one of the recent episodes of Gossip Girl, characters Blair Waldorf and Serena Van Der Woodsen modeled for Eleanor Waldorf. Although Eleanor Waldorf is fictional, the designs that were modeled in the episode are actually those of a former model’s collection called Lorick. The collection isn’t supposed to be available until Spring 2008 but due to high demand, it will be sold exclusively online by November 30th. Note to self: if you want instant success, have your designs be modeled by people of a hit teen series.

– Designer Neil Barrett has teamed up with Puma to create the hybrid sneakerboot, Puma 96 Hour by Neil Barrett Ferro Boot, $404.

– The world’s top models are talented but are they talented enough to model high fashion on the ice? Sasha Cohen, American figure skater, shows in V Magazine’s Blade Runner spread that you don’t need to be a professional model to produce amazing high fashion photos.

– Beyonce introduced the Beyonce special edition B’phone by Samsung in New York City this past Thursday. The B’Phone is a limited edition handset exclusive to Sprint. It will be available on November 4th. If that isn’t enough, Beyonce and Tina Knowles are launching a line of prom dresses under their brand “House of Dereon.”

“I’ve lent designer dresses that the girls used to wear in Destiny’s Child to some of the girls in my youth center at my church. And I’ve also made dresses for some of them, so I’m so happy to have this line now, where many girls can buy my dresses,” Beyonce tells the press. The new designs will retail between $120 and $300.

– In the pages of Harper’s Bazaar 140th anniversary issue, the top designers are photographed in a ten page spread as the class of 2007 along side of their creations. However there is one twist. They are children photographed as the designers. Some of the designers are, Donatella Versace, Alber Elbaz, John Galliano. I can’t wait to get my hands on this collectible on October 23!

– ‘Heroes’ beauty Hayden Panettiere has designed a handbag for Dooney & Bourke. The Hayden Dooney & Bourke $500 red patent leather bag will go on sale in December.

– On November 1st, Victoria Beckham’s first book “That Extra Half Inch: Hair, Heels and Everything in Between” will be available in the US. It’s already doing well overseas as a bestseller.

Vanessa Hudgens is the new spokesmodel for Red by Marc Ecko, a contemporary young women’s apparel and footwear collection. The High School Musical star will be featured in the fall and holiday 2007 and spring 2008 ad campaigns. She was also hired to be the next Sketchers Footwear spokesmodel.

– On the November 2007 cover of Nylon Magazine, fashion “icon” Sienna Miller poses with her big sister Savannah, whom she has a fashion line Twenty8twelve (sienna’s birthday) with.

– On October 19, Karl Lagerfeld, the designer for Fendi (as well as his own brand and Chanel) held his fashion show on the longest runway in the world: the Great Wall of China.

Fashion for Thought
“Fashion is expression, inspiration, vibrant, loud, wild, fashion is hip hop, music, dance fashion is money, life, everything.”
– Streetwear fashion designers from Fashion: The Life

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