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23/09/2016

Goopy price to dress like Gwyneth Paltrow

Would you spend R17 000 to princess prom dresses like Gwyneth Paltrow? With her new Goop Label, the actress shows how “laidback luxe” should be done.

Since launching lifestyle site Goop in 2008, Gwyneth Paltrow has tantalised readers with a stream of occasionally beguiling but more often bemusing glimpses into her life. The site has featured recipes for homemade pumpkin-seed milk and Paltrow’s favourite “elevating adaptogenic latte” alongside recommendations for vagina-steaming and aerial yoga — to hilarity among Gwynnie-watchers.

gwyneth

And now — far from the erroneous rumours earlier this year that she was walking away from her site — the Oscar-winning actress is betting that women will want to refresh their wardrobe alongside their next gut-cleanse kit.

So this month she introduced Goop Label, a line of “carefully crafted essentials” based on pieces from the 43-year-old working mum’s personal wardrobe. Think low-key basics that give the appearance of working-on-anyone, but probably work best on a gym-honed, edamame-fed Paltrow, to be fair.

“I wanted to create product that is incredibly high quality and delivered at a great value,” Paltrow said, adding in typical gobbledy, er, goop: “I think there’s a huge white space in the market for luxurious ready-to-wear at a direct-to-consumer price.”

Goop started as a newsletter in which she could share personal travel tips, recipes and shopping finds — anything that would “nourish the inner aspect” as the tagline promised. Her informal style and unparalleled access proved compulsive, and it now has over three million subscribers.

It has helped that, over time, many of Paltrow’s more fringey-seeming recommendations — juicing, cupping, cleanses — have entered the mainstream. So what can we expect of her sartorial offering?

Her latest charge to Gwynethise the masses will see a very limited number of pieces land on goop.com every month. The first “drop” of items are typical of her laidback-luxe style: a grey tweed blazer with matching wide-leg culottes, for instance, and a chambray denim button-down shirt.

The idea is that each piece comes with a back story (presumably because shopping is also to be seen as a journey to inner nourishment).

The Pattner Peak Lapel Blazer, $695, is a belted, single-breasted grey tweed blazer with flap pockets and subtle epaulets. It’s named after Goop’s head of collaborations and based on the design of one of Paltrow’s favourite jackets.

She wears it with the coordinating Eliza Wide Leg Culotte, $325, and in her “design inspiration notes” says: “I’m a real suit girl, and September, to me, connotes getting back to work and buckling down.”

All Goop Label items are produced in Italian factories used by brands including Azzedine Alaïa and Proenza Schouler. They are ordered by the dozens rather than the thousands, and once the pieces are gone, they won’t be restocked.

“It’s a clever way to launch,” says Emily Gordon-Smith, head of fashion at Stylus, the innovation research and advisory firm. “The limited drops and the idea that it’s focused on key items that are going to work really hard for you are going to be big news.”

And, so far, it seems to be succeeding. The Elise Chambray Button-Down shirt, admittedly the cheapest design of the bunch at $195, sold out less than 24 hours after it went online.

It proves that while it’s easy to ridicule Gwyneth’s “working mum” goopisms, an army of women out there want to look like Paltrow at any price. And in a way, it makes sense. Her stockpiles of denim cut-offs, blazers and simple mermaid prom dresses help create the kind of easy wardrobe most busy women hanker after.

“The chambray shirt is precisely what I want to see from Goop’s fashion line,” says Sarah Bailey, editor-in-chief of Red magazine. “That American laid-back luxe is exactly what you want from her. It’s easy to forget what a savvy business woman she is. I spoke to her about her plans to launch apparel at the beginning of the year. ‘Sell the way women want to shop,’ she said, ‘when it’s July and I am buying a thick cashmere sweater, that kind of takes the fun out of it.’ How true.”

How Paltrow will fare against other celebrities who have moved into creating fashion lines is anyone’s guess. Victoria Beckham has certainly made a success of it.

“There’s always room for celebrity collections,” says Gordon-Smith. “From what we’ve seen, this product seems to have been put together with integrity. There’s definitely going to be a market.”

Goop Label isn’t available outside the US yet, but if you like these pieces, watch this space.

19/09/2016

The One Dress You Need This Autumn

Bohemian garb and embroidery are two trends going nowhere fast. This autumn, every piece in our wardrobe has been given the embroidery treatment from ankle boots to biker jackets but one piece is dominating more than others: the embroidered evening dresses. In particular, the kaftan-style dress.

marieprom prom dresses

These lavishly embroidered colourful dresses are all over our Insta feed, and we want in. Nothing like the flimsy beach kaftan you might pick up the airport, these are something a whole lot more luxe. Think seriously intricate stitching, playful tassels and standout rainbow colourways.

This style garnered ‘it’ status last summer thanks to the now-cult brand Vita Kin. The Kiev based designer burst onto the scene via Instagram and attracted the attention of fashion editors and street style stars alike with her vyshyvanka inspired pieces - a traditional costume of Ukraine. Snapped up by the likes of Leandra Medine, Pandora Sykes and Anna Dello Russo, when the products finally went on sale on Net-A-Porter they sold out within 30 minutes despite their eye watering price tag of up to £1800.

If you’re looking to get in on the action and don’t fancy putting down more than your monthly rent, other brands have jumped on the bandwagon and started creating slightly more affordable pieces (look to Daft and Fann Mon. However it is worth bearing in mind, you pay for what you get. The Vita Kin dresses demand such high prices due to the time consuming process that it takes to create the complex design.

As always though, the high street has now cottoned on. Zara - the trend cloning machine - is leading the pack with embroidered items aplenty and their kaftan-style dress for AW16 has got the fash pack queuing at the door.

While these Vita Kin style dresses are perfect for matching with a wicker basket andpom-pom sandals (superyacht optional), when it comes to the colder months they are just as wearable. Look for longer lengths and a thicker material for a winter appropriate option or think smart when layering.

Style it right and you can wear all year (yes, really). Shorter style evening dresses uk can be worn over jeans while midis look great with thigh high boots. To really beat the chill layer up with a polo neck and thick tights.

18/09/2016

VIRGINIA MAN DRESSES AS DARTH VADER, PICKS UP TRASH ALONG HIGHWAY

A Virginia man is on a personal crusade against roadside litter, and he said he doesn't want the environment to fall to the "dark side"

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Henry Wakley evening dresses up as Darth Vader before he goes out each week to collect litter for the state's adopt-a-highway program, WSLS reports.

He said he enjoys the reaction he gets from passing motorists.

"I like to get out here and dress up because it makes people smile driving by. The lack of cleanliness disrupts me. We need to end this destructive behavior to restore the galaxy," Wakley said.

Mostly, it's a labor of environmental love. He said he wants to keep the galaxy clean. For now though, he's concentrating on a stretch of rural highway in Blacksburg, Va.

Someone apparently alerted police that "batman" was walking along the highway, but officers cleared up the confusion that it was actually Darth Vader, using the force for good, not evil.

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