Q: Dear Marylou: Give me, please, some idea of accessory prices in the so-called luxury price range. __ A.R., New York, NY.
Dear A.R.: Get ready to hold your breath. When a sneaker sells for $2,350 at Adidas, A T-shirt-over-a-shirt sells for $l,290 at Balenciaga, and a white alligator bag encrusted with 334 diamonds sells for $261,000 at Chanel, you know the highs of luxury accessories today.
The latest news in luxury is a collection called Logical Luxury. It’s by George Carr, an actor/author/Hollywood theater-producer-turned designer who worked at Calvin Klein as vice president of branding and marketing with his late brother Zack Carr, Klein’s long-time, highly-acclaimed creative director.
In his Totem collection, Carr says his goal is “to keep the simplicity, elegance and practicality of the millennial customer and elevate this ‘so-American’ way of dressing into modern luxury.
“T-shirts and jeans are the foundation of modern dressing. I want to continue that archetypal way of dressing, lifting street to luxury.
The suit in Zack Carr’s illustration here and others in the library of sketches he bequeathed to his brother, form the basis of George Carr’s fashion concept for today’s contemporary customer. Made of 100% cotton and available in white or black, the raglan sleeve, waist-length, collarless cardigan jacket and the ankle-length “ jean pant” are available, custom order only, in sizes 2 to 12, for $1,850. Carr says he called this matching jacket and pants “The T suit”, describing it as “easy and sexy as a T-shirt and jeans or dance top and leotards”. He didn’t say this, but I would add, “with the craftsmanship of haute couture”. For more information, write to CARR at Studio 55, 155 West 15th Street, # 1 B, New York, NY, 10011.
illustration by Zack Carr1
Q: Dear Marylou: In your coverage of haute couture designs and their attendant prices, please explain why a man’s shirt could have a four-figure pricetag.__ Y.B., Pacific Palisades, CA.
Dear Y.B.: First of all, because it was hand-made by the artisans at Dior Homme, and first shown in Paris when Kim Jones made his debut collection in June. The sheer white shirt in question featured a toile de jouy pattern (a complex floral vignette design) rendered in white feathers on tulle. Jones said it was intended to imitate the fabric on the walls of the late Christian Dior’s first boutique in 1947. You could call it wearable wallpaper for the Wall Street set.
Q: Dear Marylou: As a design student, I know the names of the designers who changed the course of fashion, and I know whose scary designs caused fear and trepidation. Rei Kawakubo comes to mind here. In today’s fashion scenario, are there any anarchists?__ N.P., Kent, OH.
Dear N.P..: He may not be an anarchist, but Philipp Plein is certainly a disruptor. His T-shirts proclaim: “Rich A$$”, “Pimp from hell” and “F___the Police”. According to Nick Remsen, writing in the Financial Times, “He’s crass, vulgar and making millions. He’s fashion’s outrageous anti-hero.” Among his “achievements”: Decorating military jackets with skulls made of Swarovski crystals. To see more of his designs, which include furniture and children’s clothing, go to Who the Hell is Philipp Plein, the title of Remsen’s brilliant Plein treatise.
My favorite quote from Plein: “I like just the right amount of wrong.”
Q: Dear Marylou: Why, when I know my favorite rayon blouse is washable (because I have washed it successfully), does the fabric care label say dryclean only?__ J.G., White Plains, GA.
Dear J.G. Some rayon fabrics are finished in a way that makes them washable. Others are not. Apparel manufacturers obviously want to play it safe. The dyeing and finishing processes formerly used in making rayon fabrics often resulted in colors that ran in the wash.
If you have a vintage rayon garment you can prevent this by adding a teaspoon of Epsom Salts to each gallon of tepid wash water as well as rinse water. This will prevent even the most delicate shades from fading and running.
(Marylou welcomes questions for use in this column, but regrets she cannot answer mail personally. Send your questions to email@example.com.)
©2018 International Fashion Syndicate
Marylou Luther, editor of the International Fashion Syndicate, writes the award-winning Clotheslines column, a question-and-answer fashion advice feature read weekly by more than 5 million.
In addition to her syndicated newspaper column, Luther is the creative director of The Fashion Group International, a non-profit organization for the dissemination of information on fashion, beauty and related fields. Her twice-yearly audio-visual overviews of the New York, London, Milan and Paris ready-to-wear shows are must-seeing/reading for industry leaders. Her coverage of the European collections appears in newspapers throughout the U.S.
The former fashion editor of The Los Angeles Times, Chicago Tribune and Des Moines Register is biographied in “Who’s Who in America.” She won the Council of Fashion Designers of America’s coveted Eugenia Sheppard award for fashion journalism, the Women in Communications award and, in 2004, the Accessories Council’s Marylou Luther Award for Fashion Journalism, which will be given every year in her name.
Her essays have appeared in “The Rudi Gernreich Book”, “Thierry Mugler: Fashion, Fetish, Fantasy”, “The Color of Fashion”, “Todd Oldham Without Boundaries” and “Yeohlee: Work.” A book with Geoffrey Beene was published in September, 2005. A graduate of the University of Nebraska, where she received the prestigious Alumni Achievement award, Luther is a member of Phi Beta Kappa, Kappa Tau Alpha, Theta Sigma Phi and Gamma Phi Beta.