For The First Time, CoverGirl Ads Feature Woman Wearing A Hijab


CoverGirl is featuring a woman wearing a hijab in its advertising for the first time in the makeup line’s history. Beauty blogger Nura Afia is featured wearing the traditional Muslim head covering in an ad campaign for a new line of mascara that also includes singer Katy Perry and actress Sofia Vergara. Afia says in a statement released by CoverGirl that she never thought she would see Muslim women represented on this scale after “growing up and being insecure about wearing the hijab.”

Read the full story here

Just my type: how fashion became all about the font

As with any obsession that encourages rummaging into minutiae, fashion’s current font preoccupation has schisms probably being debated heatedly on page 23 of a thread on The Fashion Spot. Broadly speaking, to put it in font language, it’s all about serif and sans-serif. For everyone else, it’s the fonts with the curly edges on the ends of letters vs the ones without.

Read the full story here

Stella McCartney’s flashmob finale ditches strutting for dancing


McCartney’s fashion week raison d’être has always been about more than aesthetics. Her pioneering anti-fur and anti-leather stance, widely considered the hippy eccentricity of a Beatles daughter when she launched her label 15 years ago, has since been adopted by Ralph Lauren, Tommy Hilfiger and Giorgio Armani. Last week, her brand released its first annual environmental profit and loss accounts, examining the environmental impact of the business from raw material to retail. This focus on sustainability reflects a nascent change across the industry, as fashion responds to a new generation of millennial consumers who expect their clothes to reflect their values.

Read the full story here

H&M’s diverse advert mirrors the real world. Shame the ad industry doesn’t

Diversity is so hot right now. Take H&M’s new television advert for its autumn/winter 2016 collection, for example, which features a range of women including: • Black women with natural hair • Women with shaved heads • A muscular woman • Action shots of women’s wobbly bits wobbling • A thin woman eating french fries without a side of guilt • Armpit hair • A septuagenarian • An ethnically ambiguous high-powered female business executive • A trans woman • Lesbians

Read the full story here

How the first world war liberated women’s wardrobes

Design by Sadie Williams. Photograph: Jez Tozer

News of an interesting new exhibition, Fashion & Freedom, at the Manchester Art Gallery from 13 May – 27 November 2016. It’s then touring – see this page for details.

As well as what Helen Pidd writing for The Guardian calls the obvious ‘upsides’ (you know, peace and all that):

the war liberated women from their corsets and full skirts when they were drafted in to run the country while the men were dying in muddy ditches across northern France. After finding that you can’t conduct a bus or forge steel in a floor-length silk day dress very well with a full bustle, these emancipating women started to experiment with far more practical clothes and hairstyles as they carried out their new roles in society.

Read the full story here

A plain woman’s guide to nylon for her husband

Simpler times (irony alert)
Simpler times (irony alert)

A brilliant (for all the wrong reasons) article from 1958 in which a Guardian journalist pondered the place of nylon in a man’s wardrobe.

Does the tired business man slosh it through in the bathroom basin, rinse, and drape over the edge of the bath or over the towel rail, to leave a puddle on the floor which is bound before long to rot the linoleum? Or does he leave it for his wife to run through in the morning? She would undoubtedly rather do her washing in bulk, however thankful she is to lighten the load of her ironing.

Who can argue that these are pressing issues? (no pun intended – unless you laughed).

The original Guardian article
The original Guardian article

Read the full story here – honestly, it’s well worth it!

Fearless polymaths: irrelevance and creativity


In an interview with the Guardian, Anna Wintour, editor-in-chief of American Vogue, talked about a few things – Hillary Clinton in particular. But she also said something that piqued my interest:

“The young people we hire today at Condé Nast are fearless polymaths”

That’s about the fifth time I’ve heard that word in the past week. Admittedly the other four were because I used it. But I’ve had a few conversations recently, with both students and colleagues about the need, as one of my graduates advised current students before Christmas, to ‘be interesting’.

A colleague told me recently that more than one professional illustrator had advised students not to specialise, and to remain flexible, taking an interest in as much as possible and to express themselves creatively in as many ways as possible.

Wintour said the same thing in her Guardian interview:

Wintour used the opportunity to appeal to the younger generation to “not become too specialised” and instead “be intellectually free”


“I urge you instead to seek to be relevant, to be agile and educated.”

Continue reading Fearless polymaths: irrelevance and creativity

Fashion lessons from Star Wars: The Force Awakens


I think this is a piss-take by Hannah Marriott for The Guardian, but you can never tell. So I’ll mostly be wearing orange and black this season

Captain Phasma’s mask is sleek – very on-trend silver coupled with a sexy off-the-shoulder cape – but the storm troopers’ monochrome styling and dark glasses are unequivocally the best.

Netflix made socks that know when you’ve fallen asleep while binge watching

Netflix socks

The socks use a method of rest and activity monitoring known as actigraphy. So a built-in accelerometer will wait for you to stop moving for a prolonged period of time before sending a signal to the TV to prevent you from losing your place in Mad Men for the 20th time. An LED light will blink beforehand, notifying anyone who may just be chilling very hard to move their foot if they’re still awake and watching.

Read the full story here

Quite an interesting project for those minded to try it – requires an Arduino and knitting skills. Obvious publicity aspect aside, I think this is quite a nice way to get the imagination going: how else could we combine textiles and technology?

What should fashion look like in 10 years?

1920s British news film image of future fashion

Nicola Fumo writing for Racked

Fashion is moving faster than ever — but you knew that. Product turnaround is lightning speed, shipping is nearly instant, customization is the norm, and smart watches know more about our day-to-day lives than our significant others do. In the wake of all this innovation and business-model-upheaval is, unfortunately, some pretty nasty gunk: water and air pollution, unfair labor practices, massive waste. The fashion industry is in a duality: on one hand, it feels like the future is miraculously now, with promise of faster, cheaper, smarter clothes and accessories. On the other hand there are environmental threats and factory fires; the sad badge of being one of the most polluting industries on earth.

An interesting article in which figures from the fashion industry talk about the direction it needs to take. Top takeaways:

  • sustainability and environmental impact
  • ethical manufacturing
  • health
  • embedded technology

Fashion courses should be making this stuff central to their curriculum and I’d be shocked if students weren’t already clamouring for it if it’s not there.

Read the full story here