Venus Williams eyeing up Tom Ford partnership

Venus Williams 

(Photo:cocktail dresses online)Venus Williams would love to create a men’s collection with Tom Ford.

The tennis ace has also been scoring off the court in the style stakes thanks to her label EleVen, which has been producing stylish activewear since 2007, and made its New York Fashion Week debut in 2012.

Venus recently launched her spring 2017 collection, titled Intrepid, and she’s already eyeing up future fashion ventures.

”I think it’d be really cool to do a men’s collection with Tom Ford: I eventually want to move beyond the women’s arena and bring men’s designs to EleVen – there’s no limit!” she exclaimed to Refinery29, adding childrenswear is also on her agenda.

”Yes, I think we’ll do that down the road as well. It’s important for young people to be well and healthy; if you do that when you’re young, it translates to (being active) the rest of your life.”

Landing Tom as a design partner may not be such a pipe dream as the 36-year-old has a long history of working with some of the world’s top designers. She’s previously collaborated with Ralph Lauren and Diane von Furstenberg to create high-end tennis clothes, and admits it would be great to get a top fashion name on board at EleVen.

”It’s definitely something I should be working on, ha!” she laughed. ”Sometimes, I’m just focused on what I’m doing for the brand, so I’ll forget about collaborations. That can be one of the most fun parts of design – being able to have someone push you and for you to push them, so you can try to create something you haven’t done before.”Read more at:formal dress online

April 2017 issue editor’s letter

The very first work trip I took after joining ELLE in 2013 was to Shenzhen, China, to interview this month’s cover star, Liu Wen, during the finals of the Elite model search. I can still remember how she commanded every pair of eyeballs in any given room, even one filled with other models. Apart from her incredible beauty, I was most struck by her warmth and openness. She was clearly delighted to be home in China but, ever the professional, wasn’t going to see her parents because she had to get back to New York for work. Family mattered enormously to her though, and she spoke excitedly about making plans to return in a few months’ time for her first Chinese New Year at home in years.

I’ve bumped into Liu Wen at many fashion weeks since then. These days she’s usually found on the front row rather than the catwalk, but she is always just as friendly, and never without that famous smile. For someone who has done what she has, being friendly is more of an achievement than it may sound. Liu Wen is a pioneer in so many ways and it could easily have gone to her head, as it does with so many other success stories. What a joy that it hasn’t.

Where Liu Wen’s rise was meteoric, Solange Knowles’s has been more of a slow burn. Like her big sister, she has worked since she was a child, and while her talent has always been obvious (I loved her mother Tina’s recollections of Solange’s very clear ideas of what did and did not constitute ‘talent’), it’s only with last year’s A Seat at the Table album that she rocketed into the stratosphere of success. It is an era-defining album motivated by love but also by plenty of anger. And it also happens to be full of good tunes. I listen to it every day and find something new every time.

However you are moving towards your own personal success, whatever that means for you – whether it’s like a rocket, like a tortoise, or a little bit of both (like most of us) – keep at it. As Liu Wen and Solange Knowles prove, if you stay true to your purpose and just don’t quit, you can’t help but get there in the end.Read more at:cocktail dresses australia | bridesmaid dresses online


We had an afternoon spent with Elaine Cooper when she launched her “Elaine Cooper Interior” at her new place in IT Park.

Elaine Cooper is the principal designer and entrepreneur of Elaine Cooper Interiors. She is a graduate of Fashion Design in Slim’s School of Fashion in Manila.

For over 26 years, Elaine Cooper has had a hand in creating casual clothes to bridal gowns to hotels and office uniforms. Because of her exposure and passion for arts, she naturally evolved into interiors by doing soft furnishings such as window treatments and upholstery work under Cooper and Albert before she decided to create Elaine Cooper Interiors in 2008.

Since then, she has specialized in custom-fit interiors for both corporate and personal spaces, refurbishing flats and residences by creating a distinct modern look to draperies in the city’s top hotels like Cebu City Marriot Hotel and Radisson Blu Hotel Cebu.

Dr. Warfe Engrancia was the guest speaker during the 120th Anniversary of the Martyrdom of National Hero Dr. Jose P. Rizal. As the Chapter Commander of the Knights of Rizal, Dr. Engracia had the privilege of reciting one of the world’s best composition, the “Mi Ultimo Adios” by which, because of his delivery that came from the heart and calling upon the spirit of the Supremo, those who were in attendance were moved to tears.

“It is indeed very important to commemorate and honor our beloved hero who exemplifies the great Filipino values, talents and traits. One of the greatest models whom our youth can get valuable lessons from…,” added Dr. Warfe Engracia.

Mama Sita Foundation Spreads their Signature Flavor

Filipino households will not be complete without the signature touch of Filipino cuisine made famous by the popular food icon Teresita “Mama Sita” Reyes. For over 100 years, Mama Sita has touched more than millions of Filipinos through her products, and now, she continues to widen her reach through her well-loved recipes.

Last July 4, 2016, The Mama Sita Foundation, led by Mrs. Clara R. Lapus, President, donated sets of cookbooks and commemorative stamps to the National Library of the Philippines (NLP). These cookbooks, were to be made accessible to the public in order for them to know more about Filipino recipes and produce more delicious dishes right from their home.

Other attendees include notable chefs, Chef Rosauro “Sau” del Rosario, Chefs Jester Arellano and Josen Villongco from the College of St. Benilde, and Chef Raymond Mendoza and Mr. Leroy Borrega from Lyceum of the Philippine University as well as other important stakeholders of the foundation: Ms. Phye Yabut, and Ms. Chuchay V. Andrada.

Aside from donations to the NLP, the Mama Sita Foundation is also visiting libraries across the country.Read more at:bridesmaid dresses australia | evening dresses

Thandie Newton preferred being naked to wearing saloon corsets in Westworld

Thandie Newton 

(Photo:black evening dress)Thandie Newton felt more ”empowered” in the nude than she did dressed in tight corsets for Westworld.

The 44-year-old actress played robot brothel madam Maeve Millay in the successful debut series of the show in 2016, which also starred the likes of Evan Rachel Wood and Anthony Hopkins. To win over the male customers at the saloon, set in a man-made Western world, Maeve is rarely seen out of figure-hugging dresses and fishnet tights – until she wakes up behind the scenes of the real world where she is undressed for assessment, which surprisingly the actress admitted she felt more than comfortable about being seen in the buff.

“I found myself more empowered naked than I did with the saloon outfit on,” she explained in an interview with The Sun. ”I was more comfortable naked because the costume was the most potent objectification of a woman, with the boobs pushed right up, the tiny waist. It’s an invitation for sex.”

She also noted that each element of the outfit created “sensuality” and “eroticism”, with every aspect aiming to make the prospect of sex “as provocative as possible”.

Thandie’s outfits in the sci-fi programme are a far cry from the looks she wears in the new run of the BBC police drama Line of Duty, in which she stars as Detective Chief Inspector Roz Huntley who is under investigation by AC-12 (anti corruption) police unit after her involvement in a serious case.

Show boss Jed Mercurio added small but meaningful touches to Thandie’s costumes, who described Roz’s style as “awful, butt-clenching nastiness.”

“I thought, ‘She’s a working mum so obviously she’s going to look like me,’” she recalled. “I gave some ideas of costume and Jed was like, ‘No, sorry no, you’re going to wear suits and bad shoes.’ I realised we were going to do something horribly, diabolically real. I found the most horrible shoes and pop socks that I would insist on pulling up so you could see them.”Read more at:

The highlights of the AW17 fashion season

Fashion Month is to fashionistas what a biannual Christmas would be for young children: a carefully constructed package of next season’s hottest trends, gift-wrapped in glamour and exclusivity, and hand-delivered to the masses via a lavish runway. Fashion journalists find themselves in an excited frenzy as they assess which collections nailed it, which missed the mark entirely, and what we should look out for on the high street in the coming months. This February was no different.

High fashion

When it comes to high fashion, there is an unspoken assumption about how far designers are expected to go. One of the most impressive collections came from Balmain, where futuristic opulence and authentic huntsman influences were blended perfectly together. Expert construction combined rich, earthy tones and animal prints with chain-mail and beaded embellishments, with curved and straight lines intersecting one another, and certain segments deliberately omitted to create areas of negative space. The collection was fierce yet feminine, complex yet unfussy, but perhaps most importantly, it was the epitome of desirable.


In terms of staging, none was more impressive than Gucci, which was more like a theatrical production than a fashion catwalk. A huge curtain lifted to reveal a metallic pyramid edged by transparent tunnels, where the models paraded stylistic influences from every decade of the past half-century, beautifully polarised prints, and sumptuous accessories including diamante balaclavas. The whole show was mesmerising, bordering on hypnotic, but then nothing less should be expected from Alessandro Michele and his team. By creating a collection that was far from ordinary, but equally far from incomprehensible, they matched the blueprint for success.

The collections

Vivienne Westwood is another exemplar of making sartorial statements (even when she puts her husband in charge) through her consistent neo-punk rock inspiration, while Dior also nailed their AW17 collection by adapting the colour navy for garments for every occasion.

Balenciaga tried far too hard and missed the mark, with ordinary coats worn at skewed, awkward angles, and quite why Preen decided that wearable duvets could be a fashion statement is as yet unclear. At the other extreme, Fendi’s collection could at best be described as ‘nice’: it was satisfying enough, but not exactly revolutionary. Even the Alexander McQueen collection seemed uncharacteristically understated.

Creative disappointments aside, if showcasing fashion was the main prerogative of fashion month, then rallying against politics was certainly the second. At Calvin Klein, Raf Simons’s portrayal of American unity was a subtle one: denim jumpsuits, shirt with retro pockets and a peeping American flag hinted at nostalgia, but didn’t smack of protest. Public School was more explicit, with caps emblazoned with ‘Make America New York’, but none was more blatant than Ashish. Glittery garments in all the colours of the rainbow were covered in slogans such as “unity in adversity”, “USA unfinished business” and “you are much lovelier than you think”. Long story short, the fashion world hates Trump, and they want you to know about it.

Diversity on show

This was also the most progressive fashion week yet in terms of diversity. Halima Aden walked for MaxMara as the first fashion week model in a hijab, and there were over double the number of plus-size models gracing the runway compared to last season. Older models such as Benedetta Barzini and Marie-Sophie Wilson (both fashion favourites of previous decades) were included in Simone Rocha’s show. Good for them all: it is definitely time designers embraced presenting their garments on people reflective of all potential customers. Dolce and Gabbana scrapped the model agencies altogether in favour of ‘real people’. Quite how relatable a member of the British royal family and the daughter of Noel Gallagher is debatable, but the atmosphere was certainly more relaxed than the typical catwalk, with those involved looking genuinely happy to be there.

February fashion month — it’s been a blast. Whether collections made ripples or waves in the pool of media attention, they have all been part of a politically infused creative journey which has proven the fashion industry remains very much alive and kicking.Read more at:long formal dresses | marieaustralia


If your jeans don’t look they’ve just been dragged through a hedge backwards, then artfully distressed with a pair of scissors and a cheese grater, then you’ve no business wearing them. Because distressed denim is back, it’s full of holes, and it’s coming to a leg near you (if it isn’t already on your legs).

Why? Please, allow us to count the reasons. Beginning with the obvious:

1. You can own the ‘shabby chic’ look

When you’ve worn and loved jeans for a decade, they start getting worn around the knees, and it becomes time to say goodbye. No longer. Now, if anything, they’re even more relevant than when you first bought them. Take advantage of the wearing in the knees by ripping them, using a cheese grater to fray those edges, and enjoy how fashionable you are while not even trying.

Obviously if you don’t have well-worn jeans, or you don’t trust yourself with sharp implements, then go and buy a pair. Tu have some excellent distressed pieces in their latest denim collection that won’t make you cry when you check your bank balance.

2. It works in winter as well as summer

You’d imagine that all those holes would cause some serious chill, but Gigi Hadid recently showed us that the distressed denim look is as much for winter as it is summer. Just wear with chunky trainers and a big winter coat to combat the small hole near your knee. Or, even better, make like Kendall Jenner and wear fishnets under the jeans, for double the fashion points. If you’re really cold, stick a pair of coloured tights on!

Anyone who can work coloured tights or fishnets into a casual daywear look deserves an Oscar, regardless of the fact that the Oscars traditionally celebrates achievements in film.

3. They can be dressed up or dressed down

Ripped clothing tends to be a fairly casual look. But while it’s almost impossible to look like Rosie Huntington-Whiteley unless you were borne from the gods and made of shining light, you can certainly take a leaf out of her distressed denim look; she tends to team hers with pale court shoes and paler silk bomber jackets. Which actually looks pretty adorable.

Or, maybe you’re the type that will always choose leather over pearls. In that case, team your distressed denim with trainers and a black velvet bralet. Suddenly, you’re the queen of ‘dressed down.’

4. Go baggy, go tight

When you think of jeans, you often think of skinnies – but boyfriend jeans were made to be distressed. And are a lot easier, and flattering, to wear. Jessie J is the purveyor of the ripped boyfriend jean (a fashion singular for you there), and often pairs them with bright coloured heels, a simple white tee and a long coat. Maybe try that if you’re concerned that holes in skinny jeans may equal a sort of sausage effect on your legs. It’s certainly something that happened to us, (me, it happened to me, Stevie, who is writing this.)

5. It’s not just jeans – distressed denim works well on jackets AND skirts

Big, slouchy distressed boyfriend denim jackets were all over the Spring ’17 runway – yep, boyfriend denim jackets are a thing. Apparently, you just take something that’s for a woman, and if it’s really big, you imply it’s her boyfriend’s. Easy. Anyway, if you’re not into the idea of ripped jeans, but still want to get into the ripped trend, then simply buy into the denim jacket trend. You can double denim it up with your non-ripped jeans (double distressed denim is potentially a shade too far), or use it to toughen up a fancy schmancy dress. Denim skirts have also been making appearances at Fashion Weeks since last Fall, which is, again, an easier way to slide into the trend if you’re not into distressed jeans.Read more at:white formal dresses | red formal dresses

Virgil Abloh Among First Takers of the Bella Hadid x Chrome Hearts Line


(Photo:formal dresses 2017)The collaboration between Bella Hadid and L.A.-based Chrome Hearts debuted Saturday night during Paris Fashion Week at the brand’s flagship. The long-standing close relationship between Hadid and the Stark family made designing easy. “She started as a friend of Jesse Jo’s who came around the factory,” Laurie Lynn Stark recalled. “Bella’s familiarity with the full scope of Chrome Hearts — archives, design and production capabilities included — made experimentation easy. The bondage jacket with its complicated, unique construction was an achievement to pull off.” Word has it Virgil Abloh cleared out anything in XL before heading to Bar Matignon, where the fashion crowd gathered to fete the capsule.

By the time Michele Lamy arrived, the club space was packed as Hadid took to turntables alongside DJ Chase B.

Dancing in the crowd were designer stylist Elizabeth Sulcer, designer Peter Dundas, models Winnie Harlow and Natasha Poly, Luka Sabbat and Julia Restoin-Roitfeld, who recently started designing for French jewelry brand Didier Dubot.

“I collect Chrome Hearts,” said eyewear designer Thierry Lasry, who sported his usual fistful of silver rings from the brand, “so I will definitely grab a few things even if they’re not geared towards men.” His brother and business partner Leonard, who is ramping up his musical career, revealed that his third album would drop on March 10. Fans should expect “good French pop and a collaboration with Jay-Jay Johanson.”

British actress Sienna Miller sashayed down the stairs as Gareth Pugh revealed his operatic focus this year, with two productions featuring his costume designs: “Eliogabalo,” previously shown at Opera Garnier, will be back on stage from Oct. 12 at the Dutch National Opera & Ballet in Amsterdam; this summer, “Antigona,” directed by 2008 Turner Prize nominee Goshka Macuga, will be one of the highlights of Documenta, the art fair that happens every 5 years in Kassel, Germany.

But foremost on the British designer’s mind is political activism. “The fashion industry is so full of waif and strays, women and gay men, immigrants, that I’m very disappointed at how quiet it is. ‘Silence is violence,’” he said.

“Being political in fashion sounds a little like a pastiche. But in a time of crisis, do you look away or do you stick with it?” he continued. “I was asked if I was afraid it would affect my American customers. That didn’t even cross my mind. Fashion is a mirror to culture, and I would feel like a total fake and a wastrel not to use the platform available to me to speak up.”Read more at:cocktail dresses

Ellie Goulding wears head to toe black when making music

Ellie Goulding has to wear all-black ensembles whenever she hits the recording studio.

The British popstar is making a name herself in the style world, with her eclectic looks ranging from casual crop tops and shorts for festival performances to sleek evening gowns for red carpet events.

But Ellie admits that she has one simple rule when it comes to fashion.

”I usually actually wear all-black, all the time,” she told WENN Cover Media. ”When I’m in the studio, I’m very superstitious, I only wear black, I don’t know why, it’s just always been my thing.”

However, the Love Me Like You Do singer shares that she is looking forward to the arrival of the U.K. summer so she can test out vibrant floral looks which have been popular on the runway of late. And she’s now keeping a look out for cute outfits to match her new footwear designs which she has created in partnership with German label Deichmann. The line includes sneakers, high heels, sandals, mules, and espadrilles.

”I’m very much into comfort but also, kind of style and a bit of sophistication, and I think that’s what my collection does,” smiled Ellie. ”I’m known to wear a lot of black, and I can be very monochrome, but I love the fact that there are just these colours, and it’s kind of very subtle and literally what I would wear – comfortable with sparkle, that’s me!”

The 30-year-old added that she is pleased the line is affordably priced, because when she was at school and university she couldn’t afford to buy the shoes she wanted. Instead, Ellie used to ”borrow” her sister’s heels and clothes.

”I’m pretty sure that I used to steal my sister’s shoes all the time because we had the same shoe size. I used to steal her shoes all the time, obviously I could never afford to buy shoes, any money I had went on CDs from HMV or wherever, so I’d steal her clothes a lot,” she laughed. ”Sometimes if I wore them out, oh God, she’d be really mad.”Read more at:mermaid formal dresses | red formal dresses

Condoms are good for safe sex and great for fashion

In 1995 I arrived at college an insecure and unexposed, yet inexplicably smug 18-year-old from the coal fields of Appalachia. I found myself surrounded by people from sophisticated places like Newark and Buffalo. In an attempt to fit in, I quickly started alluding to my prowess in fields that I actually knew very little about — like sex.

So, imagine my small-town surprise when I visited the student health office for a sinus infection and left with an antibiotic — and a paper bag bulging with condoms. I couldn’t have felt more conspicuous and nervous had that bag been filled with money from my first ever bank heist.

I quickly stuffed the bag into my back pack and hustled back to my dorm. With the door securely locked behind me, I breathlessly dumped the bag out onto my twin bag. To my wide-eyed, virginal amazement I saw that the condoms were in a rainbow of colors. Mind blown.

Twenty-two years, some great sex (or some progressive thinking) and a kid later, I didn’t really think that condoms were still something that could blow my mind. That was until I heard about Condom Couture.

Officially, Condom Couture is an annual fundraiser that raises money for Planned Parenthood South Atlantic (PPSAT) and aims to raise awareness about women’s health and safer sex. Local designers are charged with creating custom pieces made from condoms.

This year’s fashions are from the 1910s to the 2000s in celebration of 100 years of Planned Parenthood. Designs will be auctioned after the show with all proceeds going to PPSAT.

But, make no mistake, this is not your grandmama’s fundraiser. There are no white table cloths, no power point presentations, no rubbery chicken served over couscous. Nope, Condom Couture is part fashion show and part raucous party.

Needless to say, chairing an event like this is not for the faint of heart. Fortunately, Charlotte is home to the lion-hearted and ballsy Lesa Kastanas. Kastanas is a local leader, entrepreneur, social median maven, activist and complete force of nature who coordinates Condom Couture.

I have known of her for years as we orbit the same social media galaxies. However, I didn’t get to meet her in person until last week. It was worth the wait.

Kastanas blew into Central Coffee with her flaming hair blowing behind her. She came straight over to me and gave me a hug. Meeting her felt like slipping on your favorite sweater — warm and familiar.

As we enjoyed our lattes, Kastanas told me that a few years ago she and Marci Shealy, PPSAT’s Director of Philanthropy, attended a Condom Couture event in Asheville. Afterward, they discussed whether Charlotte was ready for such an event.

Kastanas said that she knew that it had to be different from a typical fundraiser. Of course, it needed to educate and spark interest and it also needed to be fun, diverse and relaxed. It needed to be a “full-on party for the people.”

So, that’s exactly what she created. In addition to the runway walking, Miami Dice and DJ Spider will be pumping out decades of fabulous music as fire twirlers and go-go dancers dancers entertain the crowd.

It is clear that Kastanas works tirelessly and pours her heart into this event, but what struck me most was how humble she was and how much credit she gave to those who support her during this event. She said that without the help of people such as Sharon Dowell, Linda Martinez, Donna Scott, Mike Watson, the host of incredible local designers and models and the support of PPSAT, this show would have never become the glamorous, edgy, diverse, rocking event that it is.Read more at:cocktail dress australia | bridesmaid dresses australia

Boutique Marchesa opens its first-ever stand-alone store in The Dubai Mall

Boutique Marchesa opens its first-ever stand-alone store in The Dubai Mall 

(Photo:evening gowns)Marchesa (pronounced mar-kay-sa), creator of otherworldly gowns and spinner of dreams, has chosen Dubai as the location of its first-ever stand-alone boutique in the world. Set within the elegant surroundings of Fashion Avenue in The Dubai Mall, the store discreetly opened its doors on December 28 last year, but celebrated its official launch last month.

Taking its inspiration from the apartments of 1940s Paris, the boutique is genteel and sophisticated, offering a neutral canvas against which Marchesa’s signature evening gowns are allowed to shine. The boutique carries both Marchesa and its more accessible sister label Notte by Marchesa.

The two designers behind the label, Georgina Chapman and Keren Craig, met while studying at the Chelsea College of Art & Design in London. They realised that they had a shared love of glamour, and complementary skills in costume and embroidery design, so were well placed to create magical evening gowns. In 2004, Marchesa was born.

The brand is named for the wildly eccentric Italian aristocrat Marchesa Luisa Casati Stampa di Soncino (1881-1957), a glamorous socialite and patron of the arts. The heiress to a fortune so vast that she was rumoured to be one of Italy’s wealthiest women, she collected art and artists with equal fervour, declaring herself to be ”a living work of art”.

Galvanised by her colourful life, Chapman and Craig translated di Soncino’s stories into high-end gowns that were both elegant and fanciful. Aimed at those with the desire to really dress up, Marchesa proved itself perfect for red-carpet outings, and within two years had earned itself a place in the top 10 in the annual competition held by the Council of Fashion Designers of America and Vogue Fashion Fund to cultivate emerging talent.

Offering dresses that range from simple sheaths through to showstopping gowns, the new Dubai Mall boutique has something to suit most occasions. However, where Marchesa is in its element is at the most grandiose of moments, where only yards and yards of fabric will do. With its unique take on the fanciful, Marchesa allows its customers to indulge in a sense of theatre, dressing to the nines in billowing tulle and intricate embroidery. With huge skirts and nipped-in waists, these are dreamlike gowns that speak to the child-princess within every woman. It is no coincidence thatVogue describes Marchesa as the creator of ”Disney princess” gowns.

Marchesa’s spring/summer 2017 fashion show in New York saw dresses created from layers of tulle in ombré tones, with sheer, shimmery, barely-there fabrics. Previous collections offered cascading chiffon in light-as-a-whisper clouds, embellished with hand-cut flowers scattered as if blown in by the breeze. Meanwhile, for its spring/summer 2017 runway show, Marchesa Bridal offered up Chantilly lace column dresses, with puffed sleeves and petals of ivory silk gathered in drifts around the models’ feet.

Yes, Cinderella, you shall go to the ball.Read more at:cocktail dresses online