Spring/Summer 2014 New York Fashion Week Overview: The Menswear Collections

by Phillip Johnson

Everyone (and I do mean EVERYONE) will tell you (and have written) that the the New York Spring/Summer 2014 Fashion Shows weren’t much to write home about. For a lot of people, they blamed the Lincoln Center (which is not necessarily true although the vibe there in September was a LOT off the charts in a negative way); others blamed the uninspiring collections and having to travel all over the city (who wants to go to Pier 57 on the West Side Highway at 9 am in the morning or at 9 pm at night, I ask you?). However you view the shows in New York, the facts still remains that there were some very good collections (Ralph Rucci, Michael Kors), some very good debut collections (Desigual from Spain), some collections that totally missed the mark (let’s leave this space blank in th interest of protecting the guilty) and others that simply tread water until next season or when they find renewed inspiration, whichever comes first (Ditto). Most importantly, given that the fact that the mens collections generally play second fiddle to the women’s shows in New York, it was the men’s shows and the menswear designers who really showed real sparks of inspirations, which was then reflected in their generally well-received collections.

Again, the naysayers have, in their reviews, said that the menswear collections were “beyond boring” but seriously, we are talking about the U.S. menswear market, are we not? Get a grip. American men, unlike their European conterparts, are not natural preening peacoks. Therefore, in New York, if you want to really market your collection and stay in business, you have to market to men who are not looking to stand out as much as feel comfortable with what they are wearing. That’s the American menswear marketplace, no more, no less.

The following designers stood out because they paid attention to the marketplace while still honoring their own sense of design.

TODD SNYDER

Iowa native Todd Snyder launched his eponymous menswear collection exclusively at Bergdorf Goodman, Ron Herman, and Neiman Marcus for Fall 2011. Inspired by Savile Row craftsmanship, military tailoring, and a distinct New York sensibility, the line has garnered wide critical and commercial praise in the US. In 2012, the line was picked up by Barneys New York and select Nordstrom stores; simultaneously, Snyder was nominated for the CFDA Swarovski Award for Menswear and named one of GQ’s Best New Menswear Designers. The collection has also developed a fervent following abroad, especially in Japan where Snyder is considered a pioneer in American tailoring by top retailers including Ginza’s Estnation. He spent two decades honing his skills in New York, designing outerwear for Polo Ralph Lauren, working as Director of Menswear for the Gap, and SVP of menswear at J. Crew, where he revamped men’s styling, introduced formalwear, and launched a series of collaborations with heritage brands like Timex, Red Wing, Thomas Mason, and Alden that culminated in the popular Liquor Store boutique, opened in 2008. Now at the helm of his own brand, Snyder still strives to deliver on the rubric set forth by his Badowers mentor: “A perfectly fitted suit makes the man.” His spring/summer collection was his best effort yet.

OVADIA & SONS

With their acknowledged unique take on American menswear (combining artisan workmanship with modern silhouettes), Brooklyn-based twin brothers Shimon and Ariel Ovadia, who have no formal design training, have managed to cultivate a niche following of devotees among men who care about getting dressed. It’s this combination of having their personalities embedded in the code of their designs, as well as their “Made in the USA” sensibility that has everyone talking. Thier collections was one of the highlights of the menswear collection season.

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Craftsy and Lion Brand Yarn Company Partner on Innovative Techniques & Inspiration for First Time

Intensive Instruction on Lion Brand Yarn Company Patterns Now Available to Knitters Anytime, Anywhere

Pick up your needles and yarn! Knitters and crocheters around the world have long enjoyed Lion Brand Yarn Company’s designer patterns and beautiful yarns.  Now, students have the unique opportunity to expand their skill set with Lion Brand’s time-tested techniques, and create varieties of stylish sweaters, classic cables and more, in three new online classes powered by Craftsy® www.craftsy.com, the preeminent online destination for passionate makers to learn, create, and share.

Expert instructor Amy Ross teaches knitting technique for students.  (PRNewsFoto/Craftsy)

Expert instructor Amy Ross teaches knitting technique for students. (PRNewsFoto/Craftsy)

“Over the past 135 years, Lion Brand Yarn Company, a family-owned and operated business, has inspired millions of knitters and crocheters with beautiful, one-of-a-kind patterns and instruction on essential techniques,” said John Levisay, Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Craftsy. “Now, together, we’re combining the creativity and originality of the Lion Brand yarns and patterns with the magic of Craftsy’s online education experience.”

Discover all the different ways to create the knit and the purl stitch.  (PRNewsFoto/Craftsy)

Discover all the different ways to create the knit and the purl stitch. (PRNewsFoto/Craftsy)

With the expertise of two talented instructors, Patty Lyons, who helped launch the Lion Brand Yarn Studio in New York City, and Lion Brand designer Amy Ross, Craftsy and the Lion Brand Yarn Company have created three classes for enthusiasts and experienced knitters alike.

We’re thrilled to be collaborating with Craftsy to combine their expertise in online education with Lion Brand’s high quality

Lion Brand Yarn Company is a 135 year-old family-owned and operated business devoted to inspiring and educating knitters and crocheters.  (PRNewsFoto/Craftsy)

Lion Brand Yarn Company is a 135 year-old family-owned and operated business devoted to inspiring and educating knitters and crocheters. (PRNewsFoto/Craftsy)

Craftsy is the preeminent online destination for passionate makers to learn, create, and share.(PRNewsFoto/Craftsy)

Craftsy is the preeminent online destination for passionate makers to learn, create, and share.(PRNewsFoto/Craftsy)

accessible yarns and designer patterns,” said VP of Marketing Ilana Rabinowitz at Lion Brand Yarn Company. “Now, knitters everywhere have the opportunity to break out of their comfort zone and build new skills in a low-risk way by going online to learn.”

This relationship is an exciting expansion for Craftsy, which currently offers more than 45 knitting classes covering fundamentals, intermediate and advanced techniques, inspiring projects, pattern design, and business basics. As unique offerings in Craftsy’s catalog, these exclusive Lion Brand classes are designed to provide a bridge for the casual knitter, from the tried and true to more complex projects, helping them develop transferrable techniques for hundreds of possibilities.

The three new Lion Brand Yarn Company classes launching on Craftsy today are:

My First Sweater: Find out how fun and easy it can be to make your first sweater– sure to be your new favorite! Make any of three cute sweaters based on Amy’s easily modified sweater pattern, and breeze through simple shaping for a flattering fit.

Improve Your Knitting: Alternative Methods and Styles: Discover all the different ways to create the knit and the purl stitch: continental, combination, backwards knitting, Portuguese and more. Plus, find out how to combine styles for more even tension overall, improve your cabling and create Fair Isle using both hands.

Explorations in Cables: Crack the code for classic cables! Master both simple and compound cables, beautify your cables with blocking and turn mistakes into triumphs– all while knitting two impressive projects.

With the convenience of the Craftsy platform students can enjoy classes anytime and anywhere, across desktop and mobile platforms (computer, tablet, or phone). While high-definition video provides an unparalleled view at every step, each lesson is also carefully designed, planned and curated to highlight the most valuable information. Plus, with lifetime access to all classes, students can customize their learning experience by pausing, rewinding and revisiting techniques as often as they’d like, sharing projects with fellow knitters, and asking expert instructors one-on-one questions.

With chilly winter weather on the way, the Lion Brand class launch offers students the perfect opportunity to take their skills to a new level with fun projects, from the comfort of home. Plus, it’s never too late to whip up a quick gift just in time for the holidays. To access the new classes, visit www.craftsy.com/lion.

With classes in quilting, sewing, knitting, cake decorating, art, photography, cooking and many more categories, over two million makers are taking their skills to new heights alongside the world’s best instructors at Craftsy. Craftsy’s online classes combine top-quality content, anytime convenience and the intimacy of an in-person experience. Members of the Craftsy community – whether neighbors or makers across the globe – inspire and support each other with ideas, tips and positive feedback along the way. For more information, visit www.craftsy.com.

Founded in New York City, The Lion Brand Yarn Company is a 135 year-old family-owned and operated business devoted to inspiring and educating knitters and crocheters with yarns, patterns, how-tos and ideas that elevate their yarn crafting experience. Year after year Lion Brand drives innovation in the yarn business and pursues excellence in the quality of their products. Crafters love their patterns offered through magazines, books with major publishers, as well as their web site, which offers 5,235 free knitting and crochet patterns, with more added every week. Lion Brand yarns are available throughout the United States in craft chains, discount chains and internationally in 17 countries. For more information, visit www.lionbrand.com.

Garnet Hill Launches 2013 “More the Merrier” Holiday Gift Campaign

More Gifts. More Cheer. More Fun. More the Merrier.”

Garnet Hill, a multichannel retailer, has announced the launch of its multiplatform holiday gifting campaign, “ More the Merrier.” This multidimensional customer engagement initiative includes exciting sweepstakes and contests, participation in the St. Jude Thanks and Giving ® campaign, easy-to-shop online gift guides, and a 2013 Holiday Sourcebook catalog featuring Garnet Hill’s biggest gift selection ever, as well as favorite picks from the editors at Lucky magazine.CP_Logo_GarnetHill

Renowned for superior quality, fine fibers, and original design, Garnet Hill, owned by interactive retailer HSN, Inc. (HSNi), has provided distinctive merchandise and services of the highest caliber for more than 35 years. The company began as an importer of English flannel sheets and has grown into a distinguished brand and multichannel marketer, offering unique bedding, home furnishings, women’s apparel and children’s clothing online and in its catalogs. Garnet Hill searches the world for unique items and inspiration for its extensive line of exclusive products. For more information, visit www.garnethill.com .

For the first time ever, HSNi has leveraged the cumulative power of its portfolio of brands to launch their More-the-Merrier holiday campaign. More-the-Merrier offers consumers a curated assortment of highly giftable items this holiday season. Be sure to check out the online gift stores for HSNi brands Ballard Designs, Frontgate, Grandin Road, HSN, Improvements, and TravelSmith.

The More-the-Merrier Sweepstakes offers one lucky winner a luxury getaway to New York City, including airfare for two, a stay at a Small Luxury Hotels of the World™ property (winner’s choice of The Refinery or The Quin), and the opportunity to meet with fashion editors at Lucky magazine for style tips and a tour of the Lucky fashion closet. While in New York, the winner and guest will enjoy a performance of both Chicago and Pippin on Broadway. In addition, they will receive a $1,000 Garnet Hill Gift Card and new Garnet Hill luggage. Enter for your chance to win through December 22, 2013.

The “Dream Big” Slipper Boot Design Contest will be open to kids from now through December 2, 2013. This immensely popular annual event offers children the chance to submit artwork for a pair of boiled wool slipper boots. Three winners will be selected to receive a pair of slipper boots designed from their illustration, plus a $250 Garnet Hill Gift Card.

At www.garnethill.com , customers will find a Gift Shop featuring an edited collection of handpicked gifts for men, women, children, and the home, as well as a More-the-Merrier section with favorite gifts of the 2013 holiday season. From December 3 through 22, Garnet Hill will offer “Our Gift to You,” a selection of top gifts with special pricing.

On Pinterest customers can find gift ideas and tips for selecting the perfect present, and get inspired for holiday decorating. Fun, festive content will be shared throughout the season on Facebook, Twitter, and Threads by Garnet Hill .

As always, Garnet Hill will make gift-giving easy with beautiful gift packaging, one-size-fits-all Gift Cards and E-Gift Cards, easy last-minute shipping, free returns on exchanges, and their always reliable unconditional satisfaction guarantee.

As part of Garnet Hill Cares, the company’s ongoing charitable efforts, Garnet Hill will be participating in the 10th annual St. Jude Thanks and Giving® campaign, to support St. Jude’s lifesaving work of finding cures for children battling cancer and other deadly diseases.

Check in regularly for the latest holiday happenings throughout the season at www.garnethill.com .

ALOR® Swiss Watches Partners with Campowerment®

Luxury Brand Aimed at Women to be Exclusive Sponsor for Leading ‘Weekend Girlfriend Getaway’

ALOR® Swiss Watches, an ALOR® International Ltd. brand, announced a national partnership with Campowerment®, the hugely popular camp weekend for women to bond, renew and re-ignite their lives. As the exclusive luxury brand sponsor for all national camping events beginning November 2013 through 2014, Campowerment® will officially adopt the tag line Powered by ALOR® Swiss Watches.

Developed by Tammi Leader Fuller, an Emmy-Award winning TV Producer and previously-overwhelmed-dynamic-single

ALOR Swiss Watches, the luxury brand aimed at women, partners with Campowerment, the popular weekend retreat to re-ignite women's lives. As exclusive sponsor of all national camping events from November through 2014, Campowerment officially adopts the tagline, Powered by ALOR Swiss Watches.  (PRNewsFoto/ALOR Swiss Watches)

ALOR Swiss Watches, the luxury brand aimed at women, partners with Campowerment, the popular weekend retreat to re-ignite women’s lives. As exclusive sponsor of all national camping events from November through 2014, Campowerment officially adopts the tagline, Powered by ALOR Swiss Watches. (PRNewsFoto/ALOR Swiss Watches)

mom of two, Campowerment is a weekend retreat for women designed to help re-ignite their lives.  With 7 events per year, Campowerment combines the magic of childhood summer camp activities with interactive workshops led by experts in health, wellness, love, spirituality, parenting, personal style and business empowerment.  Campowerment takes place at accredited summer camp locations in Malibu, CA; Orange Springs, FL; The Poconos, PA and The Catskills, NY.  For more information, visit www.campowerment.com.

ALOR® Swiss Watches are the newest offering from ALOR® International Ltd, the luxury jewelry and watch company founded in 1979 and known for its signature 18kt Gold and stainless steel cable designs under the CHARRIOL brand in North America. With sophisticated style, contemporary design and an ease of wear, ALOR Swiss Watches was created for a woman’s everyday fashion lifestyle embodying the essence of the brand, It’s About Time, It’s About Me.

Partnering with Campowerment was a natural fit for ALOR Swiss Watches,” said Ori Zemer, ALOR Principal. “We’re a brand primarily focused on women and one that values a woman’s time. ‘It’s About Time, It’s About Me,’ our brand motto, is aligned perfectly with Campowerment’s mission of celebrating and empowering women.”

The robust partnership will include regular giveaways of ALOR Swiss Watches, cross integration of all marketing, sales and advertising materials for both companies, as well as various social media initiatives. Additionally, ALOR, It’s About Time, It’s About Me™ relaxation lounges will be present at all camp sessions.  And ALOR Swiss Watches will give away “scholarships” to lucky women to attend Campowerment camp sessions throughout 2014.

We are beyond excited to be partnering with ALOR because of its commitment to women who actually ARE carving out some “me” time, to re-ignite their lives in a hilariously fun, healthy, empowering way, ” said Tammi Leader Fuller, Campowerment’s Chief Empowerment Officer. “It’s refreshing to work with such a progressive company that recognizes women who take time for themselves really can live their best lives. At Campowerment, we’re giving them the tools to get back to their happy place.  It’s a great fit.”

Spangler Candy Company Introduces Dum Dums® Holiday Pops and Peppermint Marshmallow Circus Peanuts

This Christmas season, Spangler Candy Company (www.spanglercandy.com) will launch limited edition, holiday flavors in two of its most iconic brands: New Dum Dums® Holiday Pops (www.dumdumpops.com) and Peppermint Marshmallow Circus Peanuts (www.saftpops.com)

Spangler Candy Company launches limited edition, holiday flavors in two of its most iconic brands: New Dum Dums(R) Holiday Pops and Peppermint Marshmallow Circus Peanuts.  (PRNewsFoto/Spangler Candy Company)

Spangler Candy Company launches limited edition, holiday flavors in two of its most iconic brands: New Dum Dums(R) Holiday Pops and Peppermint Marshmallow Circus Peanuts. (PRNewsFoto/Spangler Candy Company)

Dum Dums® Holiday Pops will feature eight festive flavors plus the Mystery Flavor(TM). Sweet- toothed fans will find comfort in a Hot Chocolate or Sugar Cookie flavor while those who like the more non-traditional flavors will enjoy Polar Punch and Green Apple Grinch. Whether young in age or young at heart, there’s a flavor for every fan. With an SRP of $2.49, Dum Dums Holiday Pops are available in 10.4 oz bags and packed 12 per display case.

Also, from the number one name in Circus Peanuts, Peppermint flavored Circus Peanuts are here! Enjoy them one by one or drop a few in a cup of hot chocolate for a chocolaty-mint twist. They will be available in 8 oz bags, packed 12 per display case with an SRP of $2.29.

Entertainment Cruises Unveils The Manhattan Elite, New York Metro Area’s Newest Private Yacht

Manhattan Elite Joins Distinguished Fleet of Cruise Ships Sailing the Famed New York Harbor

Entertainment Cruises (www.entertainmentcruises.com), the largest harbor cruise company in the United States, recently introduced The Manhattan Elite to its fleet. The brand new private charter yacht offers space to host distinguished events on the Hudson River – complete with endless options for food and beverages, entertainment, flexible boarding and breathtaking views of the New York City skyline. This prestigious vessel launches just in time for the holiday celebration season.

An innovative and accommodating yacht, The Manhattan Elite features two-levels of event space. Featuring a VIP and manhattan-elitebridal suite, an indoor/outdoor lounge area and a large bar on the upper half of the ship, the vessel is sure to meet the needs of a variety of corporate and social outings. With a capacity of 75 guests for cocktail events and 68 for seated celebrations, the ship offers great options for intimate gatherings. Other convenient and notable on board amenities include a large flat screen television, a fireplace, patio seating and two accessible restrooms. These features are sure to make the cruise route from the Statue of Liberty to the George Washington Bridge, a truly memorable and comfortable experience.

We are thrilled to add this private vessel to our fleet of harbor cruises, expanding our presence in the New York Metro area,” said Christine Metivier, vice president and general manager of Spirit Cruises. “It’s important for us to deliver inventive and unique experiences to area residents. The Manhattan Elite offers one of the most enjoyable and personalized New York experience on the Hudson.”

The Manhattan Elite is an ideal choice for those looking to host a distinctly New York event. The yacht can be used for gala receptions, product launches, client and employee entertaining, corporate meetings, weddings, birthdays and anniversaries. The ship offers packages that include customizable menus, open bar packages and adjustable sail times that are perfect for a variety of gatherings.

ENTERTAINMENT CRUISES LOGO

Entertainment Cruises, Inc., headquartered in Chicago, IL., was formed in 2006 when Spirit Cruises LLC (www.spiritcruises.com) and Premier Yachts (www.premieryachts.com) joined forces to become the nation’s largest family of entertainment cruises. Entertainment Cruises operates 24 ships offering a variety of lunch, dinner and sightseeing cruise experiences in Baltimore, Md., Boston, Mass., Chicago, Ill., Philadelphia, Pa., New York, N.Y.; Weehawken, N.J., Washington, DC, and Norfolk, Va. Its brand portfolio also includes Spirit Cruises, Bateaux New York, Odyssey Cruises, Mystic Blue Cruises, Elite Yacht Charters and Seadog Cruises.

The Entertainment Cruises fleet (based out of New York City and New Jersey) includes Spirit of New York and Spirit of New Jersey, each featuring vibrant dining, dancing, an interactive DJ and views of the Manhattan skyline. Additionally, the collection features Bateaux New York, an upscale, glass-enclosed European-style dining cruise, complete with entertainment from a live band. The company also sails the Atlantica by Bateaux New York and now the Manhattan Elite, both elegant private yachts. Entertainment Cruises sail daily and year-round from Chelsea Piers in Manhattan and Lincoln Harbor in Weehawken, N.J. For more information and a full list of cruises, visit http://www.entertainmentcruises.com/city/New-York/home.

French Michelin-Starred Chef Christopher Hache to Guest-Chef at Vida Rica Restaurant at the Mandarin Oriental, Macau

MANDARIN ORIENTAL, MACAU presents the renowned French chef, CHRISTOPHER HACHE as guest chef at VIDA RICA RESTAURANT from 20 to 24 November 2013. Chef Hache is from the Michelin-starred restaurant, LES AMBASSADEURS at the HÔTEL DE CRILLON in Paris.

The MANDARIN ORIENTAL, MACAU is ideally situated in the heart of Macau’s business, entertainment and high-end retail

CHRISTOPHER HACHE

CHRISTOPHER HACHE

districts, offering easy access to all major tourist sites and transport hubs. Both MACAU INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT and the Macau-China border are only 10 minutes by car, while the HONG KONG-MACAU FERRY TERMINAL is just a short five-minute drive away. From here, Hong Kong’s airport can be directly accessed by ferry in 45 minutes and Central Hong Kong in just one hour. Designed with a tasteful blend of East and West, VIDA RICA RESTAURANT is an all-day dining destination that highlights exquisite French cuisine created by Dominique Bugnand, Director of Culinary Operations and Food & Beverage. Various dim sums, Chinese specialties and Portuguese delicacies are also served to delight. Vida Rica Restaurant is open from 6:30am to 10:30pm daily.

CHEF HACHE was determined to become a chef from a very young age, influenced by his grandmother who cooked for a family-run guesthouse and encouraged by his father who ran a restaurant in the Parisian suburbs. After receiving rigorous academic training in culinary techniques, he began his career working with some of the most outstanding French Michelin-starred chefs, including ERIC BRIFFARD, ALAIN SENDERENS, ERIC FRÉCHON and FRÉDÉRIC ROBERT.

Whilst learning the fundamentals of fine cooking from Chef Eric Briffard at the ELYSÉES DU VERNET, he was inspired by the top-quality, highly creative cuisine served at PALACE DE LA MADELEINE under the reins of Chef Alain Senderens. Later with Chef Eric Fréchon’s team, where his skills were further enhanced, he participated in the tremendous challenge of earning a third Michelin star at LE BRISTOL PARIS. Most recently, he worked alongside Chef Frédéric Robert at the GRANDE CASCADE where he took charge of banquet menus and restaurant development, as well as learnt about management and essentials of profitability.

With his exquisite and diversified culinary creations that have constantly won applause from the most discerning diners, Christopher Hache was only 28 years old when appointed as Head Chef of the centuries-old Hôtel de Crillon. The talented young chef was awarded his first Michelin star one year after he and his team reopened the hotel’s prestigious restaurant, LES AMBASSADEURS in 2010, making him one of the most promising chefs on the global culinary scene.

To indulge in the full range of Chef Hache’s legendary creations, guests can enjoy a six-course degustation set priced at MOP1,288 per person including one glass of MOËT & CHANDON CHAMPAGNE. The exceptional dining journey includes dishes such as SEA BASS CARPACCIO MARINATED IN TAHITIAN VANILLA BEAN OLIVE OIL WITH BAMBOO CLAMS, GREY SHRIMPS AND CRISPY FENNEL, WARM ABALONE CRUSTED WITH OYSTER TARTAR, ROASTED BRESSE PIGEON WITH CARAMELIZED YOUNG ONIONS and QUINCE AND CRISPY HAZELNUT BISCUIT WITH MILK CHOCOLATE MOUSSE AND BANANA-LIME ICE CREAM. Continue reading