Tuesday, March 31, 2009
How I became a Superfan of Figure Skating: Golden Girl: Republic of Korea's Yu-Na Kim wins the 2009 Ladies Figure Skating Championship (photo courtesy of Johnny Nicoloro) Last week, the all-important "Academy Awards" of Figure Skating Competitions--the ISU World Figure Skating Championships 2009--came to the Los Angeles STAPLES Center. The US and South African Pairs Team Is: Nick Verreos and Kara Janx, Season 2 Project Runway Now, as many of you Project Runway fans may know (there are some of you still out there?) that back in Season 2, we were asked to design a costume for Olympic Figure Skater Sasha Cohen for the 7Th week of the show. The episode was aptly titled "On Thin Ice". Well kiddies, I was the ONLY one who even knew who Sasha Cohen was and acted like a thirteen year old girl meeting the Jonas Brothers when she was introduced to us (as well as what the challenge would be) . Not For Sasha Cohen: Nick Verreos' design for "On Thin Ice" episode, Project Runway Season 2 In short, I "came out of the closet" as being a fan of Figure Skating on Cable TV. To be honest, I was exposed to the sport by my partner and NIKOLAKI co-designer, David Paul, who is the REAL fan. So much so, that when David and his friend found out that the Championships were coming to LA, they each bought an entire WEEK'S PASS--to ALL the events! Needless to say, I didn't do that. He's SUPERFAN, I'm just a fan and a respectful TV watcher of the sport--oh and I REALLY love seeing those sometimes-wacky costumes!Superfan: NIKOLAKI co-designer David Paul, watching the practice sessions (photo courtesy of Johnny Nicoloro) The entire week passed by and David was gone from 9 AM until 11 PM, almost living at the STAPLES Center, while I tended to NIKOLAKI and various other events and duties I had during the week. Saturday came and I had enough: After 6 days of listening to him in the evening go on and on about how AMAZING the Championships were, I caught the bug!Stand Out In A Crowd: Nick Verreos at the Staples Center I went ahead and spent $200 and put my jacket and scarf on and got myself to the STAPLES Center to see the all-important Ladies Final Figure Skating Championship. My seat was fabulous (it should be for that price!) and it was near David and his skating buddies but I was by myself. A Fan With Taste: Renee Klish, the Army Art Curator for the US Army Center of Military History in Washington DC, poses with Nick Verreos at the STAPLES Center, World Figure Skating Championships I was sandwiched between two lovely ladies who promptly schooled me with the "who, what and how" of the Ladies Final Championship skaters. Little did they know that I was already "up to speed" with fifteen years of watching figure skating on TV--heck I was even sent to Italy back in 2006 for the Torino Olympics to comment for NBC on the Ladies Figure Skating Costumes! Miss Universe Parade of Nations: The top three skaters display their pride in front of the World's press The Championships were AMAZING! I cannot lie. It was such a treat after years and years of seeing it on TV to be there, LIVE, watching it all happen . The Ladies Final Championship lasted about 6 hours (yep, all you see is about 2 hours of it on TV, when they get to the top 6 skaters at the end). The top Gold Medal Prize went to South Korea's Yu-Na Kim for her gorgeous and athletic performance. She did so many triples (triple jumps), she almost made me dizzy. The sold-out STAPLES crowd went CRAZY when she won. You'd think that half of South Korea was in attendance from the roar of the crowd and the flags that were being waved. Oh Canada, Oh Canada: Canada's Joannie Rochette at the World Figure Skating Championships ( photo courtesy of Johnny Nicoloro) The First Runner Up, or Silver medal, went to one of my favorites, Canada's Joannie Rochette. I just love her. Don't know why, I just do. She reminds me of the "old school" Michelle Kwan and Sasha Cohen skaters. Lots of grace, beauty and artistry, which tends to be missing from the sport because it is now so heavily concentrated on athleticism and those all-important jumps. By the way, half of Canada WAS at the Staples cheering her on, as she won the Silver. Japan's Miki Ando "turns it out!" at the World's Figure Sakting Championships (photo courtesy of Johnny Nicoloro) Finally Japan's Miki Ando received the Bronze, or Third Prize. Our American contenders didn't fare so well, but my favorite and the top US skater, Rachael Flatt, was incredible and in fact received a standing ovation for her performance. Rachael ended in fifth place, which was amazing for her considering she's only 16 years old and this was her first World Championship (more on Rachael at the end of this posting--wait for it!).Lyrical Ingenue: Sixteen Year Old Rachael Flatt: Fifth at the World Figure Skating Championships (photo courtesy of Johnny Nicoloro) I was curiously drawn to her asymmetrical bodice red beaded Guipure Lace costume because the top portion silhouette reminded me so much of the design I did for Sasha Cohen on Season 2 Project Runway. The Medal Ceremony: Kristi Yamaguchi is on the far left of the photo A Medal Ceremony (which they don't show on TV unfortunately) soon followed, in which figure skating icon, Kristi Yamaguchi was on hand to present . Kristi, by the way, looked FABULOUS; her Dancing With The Stars body was in tip-top shape. After the Championships ended, I made my way to the lobby to find David and his friends, and before you could say "Michelle Kwan", I was surrounded with what seemed like 50 thirteen year old girls and their doting Mom's! They were all asking to take a photo and have me sign their booklets. I wondered if they were confused and thought that somehow I was a Figure Skater. "I'm Not a Figure Skater from Greece!": Nick Verreos signs autographs and poses for photos at the Staples Center In fact, I told the first photo-and-autograph seekers "Ummm, you know I'm not some famous figure skater right?" in embarrassment. They quickly responded with "Oh no, we know, you're Nick from Project Runway!!!!!" Well, I had no idea that Figure Skating Fans=Project Runway Fans. But now I do. Now here's that "wait for it" moment: As I finally made it out the STAPLES Center, a woman with a couple of beautiful young girls came running up to me holding a phone: "Nick Nick!! Rachael Flatt (the 16 year old US skater) is on the phone and she LOVES you and wants to say 'Hi' !!". Then shortly after, her father introduces himself, telling me that they were big fans of the show and would love it if someday I would design Rachael's competition costume. Wow, I could not believe it! (neither could David). So we'll see. Maybe Rachael Flatt might be wearing a "Nick Verreos Original" when you see her at the Olympics next year. Oh and you know that part about me not really being a "SUPERFAN". I am now. Click Below for a video of the Medal Ceremony and the National Anthem of the Republic of Korea:
Monday, March 30, 2009
Texas (Fashion) Hold 'Em!!!Nick Verreos co-emcees the IADT IMAGINE 2009 in San Antonio Texas, Thursday April 2nd Watch out San Antonio, 'cause I'm coming! This week I will be flying into the big ol' State of Texas to co-host the International Academy of Design and Technology/IADT IMAGINE 2009 Fashion Show on Thursday April 2nd at the Norris Conference Center. Last year, I had the pleasure of being invited to IADT San Antonio to emcee this wonderful event which showcases the fashions of IADT design students. I will also be doing a special workshop/seminar the day after at the IADT San Antonio Campus, discussing how I got into the world of Fashion Design and what steps you can take to navigate through "this crazy industry". Sibling Pose-Off: Nick Verreos poses with his sister Rita Verreos (wearing NIKOLAKI), at IADT San Antonio IMAGINE 2008 "red carpet" last year I am always excited to return to the city San Antonio since it also just happens to be where my sister, Rita Verreos, lives as well as my beautiful nephew and niece, Alain and Casia. My parents also reside there. So as brief as my visit will be, I will try and get in some "Uncle Nick" time with them. Last time, they got a big kick out of riding in the limo with me to the event and sitting front row. I will have to see if my nephew Alain can put down his X-box 360 long enough to pay attention to his Uncle hosting and the pretty models (and fashion) that will be coming down the IMAGINE 2009 runway.Meet & Greet: Nick Verreos chats with a guest at last year's IADT San Antonio IMAGINE event and fashion show If you are in the San Antonio area, make sure not to miss the show because it will be a great night of fashion , and a "Walk-Off" or two from yours truly--and hopefully I will get to meet you and take a fun photo--Call 210-530-9449 for tickets and info regarding my Seminar/ Meet-and-Greet the following day. Click HERE for more IMAGINE 2009 Fashion Show information.
Wednesday, March 25, 2009
(Grecian) Hawaiian Goddess!!!!One Shoulder Empress: Carrie Ann Inaba critiques in NIKOLAKI gown on Dancing With The Stars This week on ABC's Dancing With The Stars, we accomplished a NIKOLAKI first: Three gowns in two weeks on national TV! The gorgeous judge Carrie Ann Inaba (sorry Bruno) wore another one of our gowns on this week's Elimination Show. We were thrilled, surprised and ecstatic when we got an email saying that indeed the lovely Ms. Inaba would be wearing another one of our designs. My design partner, David Paul has been away at the Staples Center attending the World Figure Skating Competition and I have had to helm the NIKOLAKI studio on my own (crazy thought!) and I rushed to hit the DVR/TiVo button--oh and tell everyone from here to Caracas Venezuela!. The DWTS Panel: Carrie Ann workin' her NIKOLAKI gown (from chest up!) Carrie Ann chose an ivory silk jersey "Grecian Goddess" one-shoulder draped cowl gown with black silk-rayon Duchesse satin band (is that enough of a description for you guys?) and looked GORGEOUS in it! White looks REALLY good against her skin color. It goes without saying: We love you Carrie Ann!!!! Athena: Model Dominique in the ivory silk jersey one-shoulder gown worn by Carrie Ann Inaba We got so many emails from friends and family who recognized the gown, but were bummed that not enough was shown--so here's the entire gown as it was shot for our Website Look Book on the equally beautiful 16 year old model, Dominique. Click BELOW to view the elimination portion of this week's episode (and catch a glimpse of Carrie Ann Inaba wearing NIKOLAKI)
Tuesday, March 24, 2009
Hot boys, Hotter underwear: It's the Andrew Christian Show!Welcome to HOLLYWOOOOOD: The Scene at the Andrew Christian Fashion Show presentation, Boulevard 3 Nightclub It now has become a staple of Los Angeles Fashion Week to end the festivities and fashion shows with the Andrew Christian Fashion Show. Once again, it was held at Boulevard 3 Nightclub on Sunset Blvd. in Hollywood, and I was invited to attend the madness. I rarely make it out to Hollywood--and especially on a Friday night--because it is always ONE BIG MESS! It always feels like I am at one of those big and tacky Las Vegas nightclubs--lots of drunk straight guys and scantily clad drunk girls. Picture VH1's Tool Academy and Oxygen's Bad Girl's Club somehow (and unfortunately) coming together. So, with that mix, I ended up right in the "thick of it", at Andrew Christian's Fall 2009 Fashion Show. My "fish out of water" feeling was calmed when, as I walked in, I immediately saw my Project Runway Season 2 friend, Raymundo Baltazar and California Apparel News' Alison Nieder. Bad Girls Club: Guests including Raymundo Baltazar and California Apparel News' Alison Nieder before the Andrew Christian Fashion Show LA-based Andrew Christian has become the go-to guy for sexy hot men's underwear, swimsuits and work-out wear and has built his multi-million dollar brand behind it. I'm sure you may also recognize his name from the Janice Dickinson Modeling Agency Show. Recently, he has broadened his style spectrum and began doing womenswear as well as actual "outer" menswear, such as vests, shirts, and pants. All tight-fitting , fabulous and perfect for the guy who has the .00002 % body fat to wear his aforementioned underwear. Scarf Happy: Nick Verreos poses with one of the beautiful models from the Andrew Christian Fall '09 Fashion Show For Fall 2009, he showed fitted colorful plaid and striped men's dress shirts, grey pants and shorts, as well as those sexy underwear he's known for (one jockstrap style almost drove the entire club into a FRENZY--all the 200+ women and the 10 gay boys in the audience went into a TIZZY!). Look Hard, He's Wearing a JOCKSTRAP! The crowd goes wild at the Andrew Christian Fashion Show, Boulevard 3 For women, there were fitted black shift dresses, jumpers and "paper-bag" skirts. Since Andrew is an "equal-opportunity employer", he also sent out various lingerie looks on his girls to balance out the exposed male skin. The mood seemed very "Pussycat Dolls-meets-The Derby". For the finale, everyone expected to see Andrew come out and do his traditional bow and walk, instead his design team did. So, the main question everyone was asking was not "Where do I get that jockstrap?" but more of "Where's Andrew Christian?". If I was him, I would have been back there with the models taking care of the double-stick tape (wink wink!). Click Below for a video of the Finale Walk of the Andrew Christian models: Click HERE for a great slide show of the Andrew Christian Fall 2009 Collection from CaliforniaApparelNews.net.
Friday, March 20, 2009
To Russia With Love...Single Runway: John Wade and Nick Verreos do the step-and-repeat at the Single Fall 2009 Fashion Show This past Monday, I was invited to another show as part of Los Angeles Fashion Week. As you may (or may not) know, there really isn't an "official" LA Fashion Week or one like there is in NY or other cities. Last season, Fern Mallis' IMG pulled out of doing the Mercedes Benz LA Fashion Week at Smashbox after about four years of producing it. Lack of interest, funding and various other reasons were the cause. Hello St. Petersburg: Nick Verreos poses with Russian model from Single 2009 Fall presentation So, for this season, BOXeight decided to stage their own "Downtown LA Fashion Week" and other designers and Southern California-based labels staged their own private shows. Single was one of those. Designer Galina Sobolev and her husband Michael, created the company back in 1994 and have been going strong ever since. Single is known for its brightly printed silk tunics, blouses, tops and silky dresses. Single also has the unique title of being the one LA-based company which employed not one BUT TWO, Project Runway designers. Both Santino Rice and Andrae Gonzalo have passed through the Single doors. Model Casting? Guests await the Single Fall '09 Fashion Show, Maxim Restaurant West Hollywood For this special Fall 2009/10 "preview" show, Galina decided to go back to her Russian roots and create a collection loosely based on her native country. And to highlight this, she staged it at a Russian restaurant called Maxim. I called upon my partner-in-fashion-crime, the deliciously sexy John Wade--of Project Runway Season 2 and Marc Jacobs--to be my "date". John had gone to Moscow late last year with Marc Jacobs and (Marc Jacobs) President Robert Duffy to celebrate the opening of their Moscow Boutique, and I thought he would enjoy it. When we first walked in, he turned to me and said "Oh My God, I seriously think I'm in Moscow!" It was that authentic--down to the fact that most of the staff barely spoke English (I just kept saying spasibo to them--thank you in Russia). Models Eat! A Single-clad model enjoying the Russian buffet, Maxim Restaurant, West Hollywood The banquet room/restaurant was split right in the middle to create a runway with round dining tables on each side. Guests mingled and enjoyed the very ample spread of delicious Russian hors d'oeuvres such as beef-stuffed Piroshkis, salmon and lox wrap sandwiches, and red cabbage salad. There was also a fully stocked Open Bar with enough Vodka to make former Russian President Putin smile! Galina knows how to throw an event: Keep the guests well fed and have an open bar.John, Try and Smile Next Time: CA Apparel News Editor Alison Nieder, Nick Verreos and a come-hither pout from John Wade Speaking of guests, I spotted fashion editors of both the Los Angeles Times and WWD (very impressive) as well as stylist George Blodwell (who famously styled actress Helen Mirren at last year's Academy Awards). I was also excited to see my good friend Alison Nieder, the Executive Editor of The California Apparel News. There was also a gaggle of beautiful Russian women and some skinny LA hipster fashionistas for good measure (they were NOT eating!).Parting Shot: A Guest's FIERCE Louis Vuitton shoes (no , it wasn't John who was wearing these!) For Fall 2009, Galina decided to design a darker moodier side of Single. She showed black and purple Russian folkloric printed blouses paired with black leather pants, violet and gold mini dresses as well as long printed bohemian-style dresses. It was Russian Boho Chic. And of course, there were a few sequined cocktail dresses in case you might be invited to the Kremlin for a swanky party. Click HERE for a slideshow of the Single Fall 2009 Fashion Show.
Wednesday, March 18, 2009
NIKOLAKI gowns on "Dancing With The Stars"This has been a double-whammy of a week for David and I here at the NIKOLAKI Studio (and it's only Wednesday!) Photo Courtesy of: ABC/KELSEY MCNEAL On Monday, we were excited to turn on one of our favorite shows, ABC's "Dancing With The Stars" and see judge (and choreographer extraordinaire) Carrie Ann Inaba, wearing one of our gowns on the show! Her assistant had emailed us to tell us that she would possibly be wearing one of our designs but we just "never know" until we tune in. Even though you could only see her from the chest up (as she sits behind her Judges Table), she looked gorgeous in a NIKOLAKI turquoise silk jersey draped "Grecian Goddess" gown from our current Spring 2009 Collection. It's the same gown, in fact, that was featured on the cover of the California Apparel News, the West Coast's Industry Trade "Bible". That evening, we also received an email from one of my favorite stylists and fellow Project Runway "gal pals", Kit Scarbo (formerly "Kit Pistol"), who styles the hostess, the lovely Samantha Harris. Well, as luck would have it, Samantha (and Kit) both loved another one of our gowns and were informing us that Samantha would be wearing it on Tuesday's live elimination taping! See, I told you: A "Dancing With The Stars" double whammy! Samantha Harris wore one of our favorite gowns--also from the Spring '09 line--a strapless crimson red silk ziberline "Mermaid" gown featuring a hand-pleated bust, asymmetrical "pouf" at the bottom and (best of all) pockets!
And of course, it was a treat to witness Jewel sing "Over the rainbow" (flawlessly) as well as see all the dance numbers, especially the "Macy's" number choreographed by Michael Rooney, the son of Hollywood legend Mickey Rooney. But again, we were just humbled to have been there and to see the hostess, Samantha Harris wearing our NIKOLAKI gown beautifully and I especially loved how she kept "working" those side pockets! Love. Below is video from the show:
We were lucky enough to have been invited (thanks Miss Kit!) to the taping last night so we could celebrate Samantha in our gown live and up close. Beyond the fact that David and I sat like "proud pappas" in the audience, we also thoroughly enjoyed watching the show live and especially being there for this first elimination. The dancers were amazing; so tan, thin, taut! (will someone please give them a FATBURGER??!!) NIKOLAKI Spring 2009 (featured above by the lovely Amanda Fields)
Tuesday, March 17, 2009
Gen Art Show: Fierce Hair: Michael M. Haase's hair artistry displayed at the Gen Art Show at Box Eight LA Fashion Week Fall 2009/10 Last week, I was invited by hair GURU, Michael M Haase to attend the Gen Art Fashion Show at the BoxEight LA Fashion Week event. I had hosted the GenArt Fresh Faces of Fashion event a couple of years ago with actress Garcelle Beauvais-Nilon. Michael called me and emailed me last minute to ask me if I wanted to go, and of course I said "yes"! I met Michael at an Oscars Gifting Suite (he gave me a fabulous haircut at Debbie Durkin's Main Event Red Carpet Lounge and Green Suite) and I was happy to attend and see his fabulous hair designs--and some LA "undiscovered" fashion...Morticia Couture: Grai designs at Gen Art Box Eight LA Fashion Week Fall 2009/10 As soon as I arrived at the Los Angeles Theater, home of the Box Eight shows this season, I ran into the handsome Slade Smiley of Bravo's Real Housewives of Orange County and his "date", the beautiful Gretchen Rossi, also from the show. As I got my seat for the Gen Art Show, I looked up, surveying the capacity-filled theater and saw LA denim "King", designer Henry Duarte, sipping drinks in the balcony (we weren't allowed to bring our drinks into the theater but he's special), as well as designer Jared Gold and stylist, author, model cohort, Clint Catalyst. In LA Fashion Week, you might not get the Anne Hathaway's or Jennifer Lopez' sitting in the front row--but it's still entertaining to see who is out in the audience; from fashion design students to reality show stars to drag queens to Urban Outfitters skinny hipster kids trying to work their best Fashion Week outfits. Welcome to Box Eight Fashion Week. Gen Art: Grai----------------------------------------------------------------------- LA Fashion Week Gets Dark: A look from Grai, Gen Art Show at Box Eight First up was Grai. I loved the Rick Owens-like darkness and bias cut silk charmeuse fishtail gowns, coupled with draped jersey knit pieces and some FIERCE shoes! Grai Fall 2009/10 at Gen Art Box Eight LA Fashion Week. After a little bit of research (yes, kiddies, I actually do my homework!), I found out that Grai designer, Maya Groyev, actually worked with Rick Owens (no surprise) which reflected on her aesthetic, silhouettes, fabric choices and the dark "Gothic Girl" who-shops-at-Maxfield overall look. Click Below for the Final Walk of the Grai Show: Gen Art: Society For Rational Dressing--------------------------------------------- Society For Rational Dressing designs were moody but with some drapey Grecian Goddess intervals as well as creme hooded knits which made it for a good respite from all the black seen on the stage just before. As someone in the LA "fashion industry" scene for the last 13 years, I had heard of them and considered them pretty established as opposed to "up and coming" but heck, Lord knows, designers need a push any way they can get it and if Gen Art can facilitate this, well, you can fill in the rest of the sentence...I liked their collection and of course I gravitated towards the one shoulder gathered Empire-style cocktail dress. Click Below for the Final Walk of the Society For Rational Dressing Show: Gen Art: Raquel Allegra------------------------------------------------------------ Designer Raquel Allegra was the third and last designer to be showcased by Gen Art during this Fall 2009/10 LA Fashion Week. Here again, it was dark, drapey, we-are-in-Berlin designs, but with almost an Argentinian Gaucho edge. Raquel Allegra is known for gathering t-shirts from LA County Jail (yep, you read right), making them even more gritty, draping them into a more fashionsita-friendly shapes---and then selling them for $450 or more to high-end stores across the nation. I liked her collection and was drawn by the whole anti-LA dark look to it all (a general theme of this season's GenArt show I guess). It all looked very Jeffrey Sebelia/Cosa Nostra to me and in a way, it was refreshing to see what LA designers were showing (since it really doesn't look like what people consider as typical Southern California style fashion). Possibly it's a reflection of the state of the dire world economy or maybe these designers aren't really trying to reach the I-go-to-Kitson-and hang-out-at-the--Ivy market, whatever it is, it was very un-LA. In a good way. Click Below for the Final Walk of the Raquel Allegra Fashion Show Skin.Graft-------------------------------------------------------------------------Romantic Goth: Skin.Graft Fall 2009/10 at Box Eight LA Fashion Week A couple days later, my friends, wardrobe stylist Art Conn (of American Idol) and Johnny Lopez, invited me to the Skin.Graft Fashion Show, again at Box Eight. Art's friend and client, American Idol singer Carly Smithson, also joined us. She's worn Skin.Graft's designs on the show and therefore was in attendance for support. We also spotted comedienne Margaret Cho (also wearing Skin.Graft) looking very cute in a tight black mini. I really loved this show and these designs. Again, it was very dark but also had a romantic twist--Gothic-Romantic. Razor-sharp leathers cut into UBER fitted jackets--men's and women's--as well as ruffled almost Edwardian-like gowns and gown skirts perfectly suited for a 2009 remake of an apocalyptic 28 Days Later Robin Hood movie (I know , it's a mouthful, but just trust me on this). Deer Caught In The (Fashion) Headlights: Skin.Graft Fall 2009/10 at Box Eight LA Fashion Week There were a couple of distressed leather jackets that I would TOTALLY wear (if I had to go to Berlin and attend some very obscure Gallery Opening at 1 AM). The styling was fabulous, especially the feathered and horned hat designs. It was really one of the highlights of this season's LA Fashion Week--and the Box Eight Shows. I am glad to have been part of it. Click Below for the Final Walk of the Skin.Graft Show: Click HERE for a great review of the Gen Art show from Racked LA. And click HERE for an great LA Weekly Style Council recap.
Sunday, March 15, 2009
Divinonisisimo!!!!!I had heard rumblings of a "Valentino Documentary" and I just shrugged it off as talk amongst drunk fashionable gays...but kiddies, just today I stumbled upon the Trailer to the movie, "Valentino: The Last Emperor" and to steal one of Rachel Zoe's lines, all I wanted to scream was "I Die!" The over two minutes trailer is KRAZEE GOOD (especially the end) and I just about got up from my couch and threw on my Burberry trench coat to reach for my car keys to go see it IMMEDIATELY! Unfortunately, it doesn't open until the 18Th of this month and only in New York (of course). Then it travels West to Chicago and opens there on the 27Th. Us Angelenos will have to wait until April 3rd to see the film. Click Below for the trailer which gave me fashion goosebumps!
McQueen's Avant-garde Challenge:Givenchy Redux: Alexander McQueen houndstooth exaggerated Portrait Collared suit Couture Wonderment was handed over on a Fashion Silver Plate--or more on a broken-glass runway stage--by the design genius of Alexander McQueen this past week for the Paris Fall 2009/10 Season. While every other designer showed recessionista fashions--dark, moody, underwhelming perhaps--mirroring the state of the depressing world economy and the state of retail and fashion in general--one of the last "bad boys" of fashion said "to Hell with that!"The Flying Mitered-stripes Nun: Alexander McQueen Fall 2009/10 For Fall 2009/10, Alexander McQueen decided to just "serve it" to everyone; the way a fierce Drag Queen "serves" it to you at a Drag Queen Walk-Off! Speaking of Drag Queen, the make up and styling was beyond out of control: The Leigh Bowery-meets-Amanda Lepore sex-doll lipstick, the Edie Beale "Grey Gardens" head wraps and fabulous lamp-shade hats from the genius of hat designer Philip Treacy (some of the hats actually had soda/beer cans tucked and wrapped into the models hairstyles!). It all added to the in-your-face collection that made editors, buyers and fashionistas alike speechless.200 Pattern Pieces: A Museum-worthy Leather Coat from McQueen's Fall 2009/10 Collection In essence, McQueen decided to pay homage to his "Best Hits"(he's done this before) as well as give a nod to the old guard of Couturiers such as Hubert de Givenchy and Dior with twisted yet divine representations on hounstooth suitings and the New Look silhouette. When I first looked at the images, I was like "Is this Couture?" because it certainly was not Ready-to-Wear. The pieces were exquisitely complicated, tailored to an inch of the models size 2 bodies, bias cutting, mitering perfectly into a seam, a la Adrian; it had all the elements of a Museum-worthy Haute Couture Collection. I think he definitely blurred the line with Couture vs. Pret-a-Porter with this collection. Lacroix is Jealous: Pouffed silk printed gown, Alexander McQueen Fall 2009/10 The gowns were either double-pouffed silks, twisted and knotted in ways that will leave true devoted lovers of the art of fashion in awe (and I, for one, would love to take a look at those pattern pieces and deconstruct it all) or tightly packed feather concoctions that would make the most beautiful of swans blush. Pheasant Anyone? White feathered cocktail dress, Alexander McQueen Fall 2009/10 Thank God he's got the Gucci Group backing him, otherwise, to be honest, he would not have been able to create such a spectacle of Couture-worthy pieces. This is not something an up-and-coming designer could ever afford to do (even if he or she were technically able to do it). And some Industry insiders argued whether or not it was even wise for McQueen to do it (see Style.com Review HERE). It all made for a collection that would be talked about for months to come and isn't that really the point anyway?! Click on the two videos below for highlights of the Alexander McQueen Fall 2009/10 Runway Show The First shows close-ups of those "soda/beer can" headwraps...