Designer of Michelle Obama’s dress to rush frock into production

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Fashion designer Tracy Reese will rush into production the dress that first lady Michelle Obama wore when she addressed the Democratic National Convention this week, Reese said on Thursday.

The sleeveless dress, which is not yet available in stores, will retail for less than $500, Reese said on NBC’s “Today” show.

The first lady’s dress was made of raw silk jacquard in a “luminescent” mix of hot pink, rust and copper, Reese said. It had an accent hemline of silver and blue.

“It was something we were planning for later, so we’re trying to rush it through the cycle so that more people can get their hands on it sooner,” she said.

A spokeswoman for Reese said she did not know exactly when the dress would be available to retail consumers.

Obama, who tends to choose more affordable clothing over high-end couture, is known for boosting the profile of younger American designers when she wears their frocks. Designer Jason Wu enjoyed a huge publicity boost when she wore his one-shouldered white gown during the inaugural celebrations in 2009.

Ann Romney, the wife of Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney, wore a red silk taffeta dress by fashion stalwart Oscar de la Renta during her speech to the Republican National Convention last month in Tampa, Florida.

Reese told the “Today” show she had sent a selection of dresses to the first lady ahead of the Democrats’ convention in Charlotte, North Carolina. But while the first lady has worn her designs on some 15 public occasions, Reese said she was taken by surprise.

“Until she stepped out on stage, we didn’t know,” she said. “She made an excellent choice.”

The New York-based designer launched her first collection in 1998 and will present her latest styles at a show on Sunday during New York’s Fashion Week.

(Reporting by Barbara Goldberg and Ellen Wulfhorst; Writing by Ellen Wulfhorst; Editing by Leslie Adler)

White House, Romney Don’t Condemn ‘Made in China’ US Olympic Uniforms

Update at 7:02 p.m. ET - The USOC and Ralph Lauren, which makes the uniforms, announced Friday night they would start making the uniforms in the U.S. for the 2014 winter games. Read about that here.

Original Post – Neither the White House nor Mitt Romney believe the U.S. Olympic Team’s “Made-in-China” uniforms need to be replaced with American-made apparel ahead of the London Games later this month.

Romney, the presumptive Republican presidential nominee who built his political career off overseeing the 2002 Utah Olympic games, told ABC’s Jonathan Karl there are more important things on which to concentrate.

KARL: We broke a story here at ABC about the Olympic team uniforms being made in China. Few people have closer connections to the Olympics than you, in fact your wife Ann even has a horse in this Olympics. What do you think? should those uniforms be made in the USA?

ROMNEY: You know, I’m not going to weigh in on that. I’m sure the Olympic committee has sponsorship agreements and such that are involved in something of this nature. The Olympic games are about the athletes and we’re going to watch the athlete perform and these other matters are extraneous I think to the heart of the matter which is how well will our athletes do? How much can we support them and their effort to bring home the gold.

KARL:Well what about the team riding Ann’s horse? Would you encourage them to be wearing made in the USA uniforms?

ROMNEY: I’m not going to get into the uniform issue. There are big issues associated with the Olympics: the security of the games, the readiness of our athletes and that’s what I’m going to focus on, hopefully when I get to cheer on the people who are going to be supporting and representing our country.

President Obama’s spokesman felt the same way earlier in the day.

“Maybe for future Olympics, those kinds of things should be considered,” deputy White House spokesman Josh Earnest told reporters aboard Air Force One en route Norfolk, Va., this morning.

“The United States Olympic Committee has said that they are a—they are privately funded.  This isn’t a government decision,” he said.

Get more pure politics at ABC and a lighter take on the news at

Earnest suggested President Obama would prefer to see the team outfitted in outfits stamped with “Made in the USA,” noting “the president’s views on the high quality of American-made products is well known. It’s something he talks about extensively.  That includes American-made clothing.”

But, echoing the position of the USOC, Earnest said the administration doesn’t want the uniform controversy to “distract from the story of young Americans…who spent a good portion of their lives preparing to compete on the international stage.”

Read more about the uniforms and the lawmakers that want to burn them here.

FASHION & BEAUTY – Iman Proved That Black Women Do Indeed Buy Liquid Foundation

Iman started her own cosmetics line for women of color at J.C. Penney in 1994, and the brand’s sales skyrocketed to $25 million in just two years. In 2004, she signed a deal with Procter & Gamble to take her brand to the mass market, but it hasn’t been an easy path. “I didn’t understand that it was if they have 1,000 doors, 200 are for women of color,” said Iman at WWD‘s Beauty CEO Summit yesterday. Distributors like Walgreens and Target responded to her products with caution and tried to place them at the back of their stores. Said Iman:

It was a no-go. They wanted me to be placed at the back, which they considered, like it is, for the ethnic section, which I was totally against it for no other reason but ’cause also I never considered myself an ethnic brand.

Ultimately, most of Iman’s business is now conducted online, since retailers wouldn’t agree to put her products with the rest of their makeup. Of course, having an e-commerce-based sales model for cosmetics really stunts Iman’s growth, because women usually like to look at makeup — and test it themselves — before they buy it. She knows this and wishes it could be different.

There is growth right here, if only the retailers understood it. I have customers from all over the world that look for the products, but I also have customers in the U.S. that can’t find the product in a store near them.

Further proving that she knows her customers best, she launched a liquid foundation last year, despite discouragement from retailers who thought no one would buy it.

Last year, I decided to create a liquid foundation, which I have been told numerous times by the retailers, “Oh, black women don’t buy liquid foundation,” right?

Um, do black women have skin? And zits and wrinkles and other cosmetic annoyances? Within three months, Iman says, the liquid foundation became her top-selling item. Moral of the story: Retailers, put makeup for black women in your makeup aisle. It’s ridiculous that this is an issue today.

Designer explains How to deal with troublesome clients when selling dresses (or other womens clothing) on Ebay.

Selling on Ebay.  Well, if you are an ebay seller, you will have to do enterprise with ebay customers. As regular stores do, you may also have a dilemma with most customers. While the vast majority of ebay prospective buyers are more than pleasant to cope with, there are some who can “ruffle your feathers.” Even though your first considered may be to give a tricky buyer a item of your mind, you may want to chorus from undertaking so, particularly if you depend on ebay to create earnings for oneself and your family.

When it will come to working with hard ebay consumers, one trouble that commonly occurs is with your current public sale listings. And we have dealt with that many occasions with our darius cordell couture assortment of dresses.  It is not uncommon to get an ebay message from a purchaser requesting that you decrease your value on one of your posted items.  Formal put on customers are very well know for this.  In reality, it is not unusual for an buyer to point out that other sellers have the very same designer dresses listed for less. If and when this ever happens to you, you will want to hold your cool. You ought to simply condition that you are unable to lower your asking selling price for any of your evening wear (or whatever it is you are selling).   Kindly advise to the ebay purchaser in question that if they are seeking for a lot more affordable prices, they ought to consider carrying out enterprise with an ebay seller who delivers additional inexpensive merchandise. The selection as to regardless of whether or not you want to lower your prices is yours to make, but you must never experience pressured into doing so.

An additional circumstances that frequently arises on ebay, regarding challenging prospective buyers, is the cost process. There are many ebay consumers who make the mistake of assuming that all ebay sellers acknowledge the identical approaches of installments for their designer evening gowns but not all do. One of the most common methods of payment accepted is PayPal.  Here at Darius Cordell Fashion Ltd we often use this payment method as well.  If you currently do not have a paypal account may want to look into doing so. Regardless of what methods of payments you do accept, you are urged to outline them in your auction listings. Yes, eBay has a section for that, but, unfortunately, not all sellers make their way down to that section. Should you have a buyer that wants to make alternative arrangements, you need to use your best judgment. If you cannot reach an agreement, eBay should be notified.

One of the other common problems that arise on eBay, with difficult eBay buyers, is those who refuse to pay. With eBay, if you bid on an auction and win it, you are responsible for making payment; however, that doesn’t mean that everyone does. When trying to request payment from a non-paying eBay buyer, you will want to stay professional when doing so. By simply sending a few reminder notices you should still be able to keep your positive image. If you haven’t heard anything from your non-paying eBay buyer, you may want to contact eBay after about a week. eBay has a process that allows you to get your fees back, as well as a process that will gives non-paying eBay buyers a negative feedback rating.

It is also not uncommon for an eBay buyer to be unhappy with the item that they purchased and received from you. If this happens, you need to also use your best judgment. To prevent a problem from occurring, you will want to make sure that you provide a detailed description of your mother of the bride dresses as nicely as numerous pictures. It is also suggested that you outline a return policy, no matter if or not you actually have one.   Ought to you have intentionally or unintentionally mislead an ebay purchaser, you ought to make the predicament suitable; however, stay your ground if you are becoming scammed or “taken for a ride.”

The over talked about conditions are just a few of the several that you may come throughout as an vendor. No make any difference what circumstances arises, you are advised to use your finest judgment and also retain your cool. You will iltimately be glad that you did.


Chinese labels steal show at Shanghai Fashion Week

  • Chinese labels steal show at Shanghai Fashion WeekEnlarge Photo

    Chinese labels steal show at Shanghai Fashion Week

Fashion Week ( drew to a close Tuesday after 40 shows, countless parties and a dazzling array of designs that showed off the country’s own emerging talents.

Here’s a look at the three local labels that set tongues wagging.

Insh ( Local designer Helen Lee is the darling of the Shanghai fashionista set, and let loose her “Window” collection on the catwalks this year. Her label Insh, she says, combines the city’s “icons, people and ideas with bright colors, energetic shapes and cross-cultural themes to create an aesthetic that is true to Shanghai.”

Zuczug ( A label that first appeared on the scene in 2002 – and is driven by the vision of its acclaimed founder Wang Yiyang – Zuczug was all bright colors and vibrancy in Shanghai this year. The label has proved enormously popular among China’s rising middle class and while the world awaits, Wang has long proclaimed his designs are suited – specifically – for local tastes.

Zix Guan ( The Matrix was certainly an influence – but so was Angelina Jolie as the actress appeared in the likes of Mr and Mrs Smith and Salt. Guan said her show this year was again all about feminine empowerment and she provided a stunning opening to the Shanghai event – and reminder to the world at large that the Chinese fashion industry is now a force to be reckoned with.

Pageant Season is getting ready to start. Are you ready?

Normally at Imagethis time each year beauty contestants from all over the US begin to prepare for their contest.  One of the main portions of the competition is the evening wear category.  Girls from all over right now are searching for custom pageant dresses to wear for competition.  The more seasoned contestant knows to begin this search near the holidays if not before.  But there are always those few who are searching for this type of garment near the end of the line.  Luckily here at Darius Cordell Fashion Ltd we are able to produce these types of gowns quickly.  The reason for that is our clients are coming to us direct.  We are not the bridal shop or stylist.  We are the actual designer.  So our time frame on production is much shorter than what is quoted by a reseller. We can make changes to our designs or you can even email us a photo of a dress you like or want to work from and we can go from there.  But no matter how or where you get your clothing for the pageant the time is now to prepare.  In June and July hundreds of pageants will be held all across the USA.

Talk about going out in style: Fashionista dies in front row at NY fashion week

Talk about going out in style.

Socialite and fashionista Zelda Kaplan, 95, died suddenly in the front row of a fashion show Wednesday at New York Fashion Week, the New York Post reported.

Kaplan donned her signature dark sunglasses and red and black tribal garb as she posted for photos before the show started. But as the second model walked out onto the runway at the Joanna Mastroianni show, Kaplan slumped over in her front-row seat.

“She flopped over in my lap. The show was just starting. I thought she fainted,” fashion journalist Ruth Finley told the Daily Mail.

Kaplan was carried out by security and pronounced dead at Roosevelt Hospital.

She was known as much for her outrageous sartorial sense as her nightlife. Kaplan rode nightclub circuit well into her nineties. She was known to “out-party even Paris Hilton.”

In a 2010 interview with New York Magazine, Kaplan said that her bedtime was “anytime between midnight and 7 a.m.”

Kaplan traveled extensively to Africa and Asia for humanitarian work, which she said influenced style.

“Passing away in the front row was how it was meant to be. Zelda loves fashion, so she died for fashion,” designer Richie Rich told the Post. ”She would have wanted to go out in style.”


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