She’s the Bop

Friday, April 19th 2013

She’s the Bop: Leah Chernikoff of Fashionista.com

"The job a million girls would kill to have" may be in The Devil Wears Prada, but the one a million (or more) read about every day is Leah Chernikoff's. As the current editor-in-chief of Fashionista.com, the former newspaper journalist covers the style world's biggest influencers, interviewing everyone from Zac Posen to Donna Karan and traveling around the world in search of scoops and trends.  

As the founding editor of Fashionista, I may be (very) biased, but I think it's pretty fascinating to report on the industry's latest developments in real time. (Also, I'm jealous she gets to party with major fashion celebs like Nicole Kidman, and super curious about it.)  So I asked her about the satin-and-tulle whirlwind that's currently her life.

FARAN KRENTCIL: Hey Leah, what's your number one fashion rule?
LEAH CHERNIKOFF: I'm pretty risk averse, so my rule is that if I see something I like, I don't buy it at first. If I'm still thinking about it a few weeks later, then I buy it. No impulse buys.

FK: Fashionista is constantly updating its site and tweeting. When do you have time to unplug?
LC: When I don't have access to the internet. Sad but true. I went to Nicaragua on vacation last year and was totally cut off. It was awesome. 

FK: What's the weirdest thing you've ever seen at a fashion show? Before or after the show counts, too.
LC: Hmm...this is tough. I've seen a lot of weird stuff at fashion shows. I think the one that stands out the most is Carven's show at Pitti Uomo last summer: it was in the middle of a soccer field in Florence. While guests ate a five-course meal, there was a waiter race (an old French tradition), the Bersaglieri came out (the part of the Italian Royal Army that plays instruments as they run), and then male models rode bikes around the field.

FK: Name an underrated aspect of the fashion industry. (Racing waiters, alas, do not count.)
LC: This is going to sound cheesy, but for me it's the just-out-of-college hustlers who will do ANYTHING to be in fashion. They put their heads down and work—they're not taking photos of themselves. I love meeting them and being reminded that this is an industry full of passionate, hard-working people, as well as glamour.

FK: Sienna, MK + A, Victoria Beckham... Which celeb who doesn't have their own clothing line yet could follow in their tracks?
LC: Charlotte Gainsbourg? Julianne Moore? Clemence Poesy? I'd be curious to see lines from any of them.

FK: Please describe your personal style in one sentence. This sentence must include the word "frosting." (Mostly because I'm hungry...) 
LC: 
I'm more of a dark chocolate person (preferably with sea salt), but ok. I'd say my style is pretty simple with aspirations of French undone-ness, a few delicate accessories for frosting.

--Faran

Friday, April 12th 2013

She’s The Bop: Fiona Byrne

If you haven't met the journalist and nail-art addict Fiona Byrne yet, get ready: you're going to be seeing a lot of the Irish-born blonde. She's the founder of the trendy / sassy / smart lifestyle site The Byrne Notice,she's a style confidante to fellow Brits like Agyness Deyn and Alexa Chung, and she's a secret interior designer

Is it any wonder I needed to know everything about her, and blog my newfound info immediately?!

FARAN KRENTCIL: Ireland is one of the most beautiful places on the planet. So what made you move to New York? 
FIONA BYRNE: The city itself. I remember standing on the corner of 14th Street and Seventh Avenue one weekend when I was visiting and thinking, I have to live here. I was looking around me at these people thinking they have all their clothes here, they have apartments, they know what restaurants to go to. I quit my job and saved some money and got on a plane from Dublin.

FK: As a kid, what did you think you were going to be when you grew up?
FB: I think I always knew I would write or be in the media. Maybe a TV host because that seemed quite glamorous to me at the time.

FK: Do you remember the first piece of clothing you ever bought for yourself? What was it? 
FB: YES, I DO! I bought these jeans that had anchors embossed on the back pockets. I guess I always loved a nautical detail. That same shopping trip. I bought a purple paisley shirt and shoes that had purple in them. I think I only liked purple because I fancied myself as a Sweet Valley Twins Unicorn Club member.

FK: You just wrote an ode on Momofuku Birthday Cake Truffles (because they are amazing). Please pick something on Shopbop.com that might also be worthy of an ode. 
FB: These Jil Sander Navy wedges are insanity. I love that the sole is rubber because it makes them so much more comfortable. I would wear the hell out of these this summer.

FK: Which fashion figure do you think Taylor Swift should date, and why? 
FB: Who’s a fashion hermit? She should date him. I have minus interest in seeing her “out walking” with another celebrity.

FK: Please describe your personal style in one sentence. This sentence must include the word "confetti." 
FB: I have very low-key, simple, casual style but will sometimes tote around a panda purse, throw on a McDonalds scarf or... carry a pocketful of confetti?

--Faran

Monday, April 1st 2013

She’s the Bop: Natacha Steven

Those familiar with Rachel Zoe's entourage of fabulous, funny friends have already met RZ acolytes like designer Brian Atwood and hairstylist Joey Maloof. The latest addition to the clique? Natacha Steven, a Paris native who's now The Zoe Report's European correspondent. But the blogger and photographer isn't just hopping between France, England, and Italy. She's also a new resident of New York City, and lives close to our Shopbop studio! Want more info? I did, too…

FARAN KRENTCIL: Do you dress differently in Paris than you do in New York? How?
NATACHA STEVEN: Yes I do! In New York, I feel more liberated. There is nothing “interdits”—that's French for "forbidden"—on what people could wear or should wear. I find it fascinating to see how people express themselves and show their own personality through their clothes. New York is clearly more casual. Being elegant and more dressed up in a "proper" way is considered a mark of respect in France. I guess this is why French women are known worldwide for their effortless, chic style.

FK: How did you first meet Rachel Zoe?
NS: I met her a little more than a year ago during at a New Year’s Eve party. Is there a better way to start the New Year than hanging out with her and her adorable husband, Roger? We did it again this year. It is now our ritual!

FK: Which celebrity would be your best friend?
NS: I guess Cameron Diaz. She seems to be smart, passionate, spontaneous, and so relaxed.

FK: You travel a lot. Do you dress up for the airport or go for comfort?
NS: How could I honestly recommend dressing up for a long flight?! I always go for comfort and warm clothes because planes are so freezing cold! My usual look is a pair of leggings, a James Perse T-shirt, and a leather jacket to be comfortable and avoid the PJ style. And, of course, the basic rule: wear flat shoes. I hate wearing heels at the airport because it's not comfortable, and because it makes you look like the girl who is trying too hard.

FK: Please describe your personal style in one sentence.
NS: Bohemian chic with a glimpse of rock. I feel the need to mix flowers or a romantic look with studs and leather!

--Faran

Friday, March 15th 2013

He’s the Bop: Daniel Vosovic


Spoiler alert: Daniel Vosovic is coming to Shopbop. We'll be getting his collection for spring, and it's major. To celebrate, I grabbed the young designer—whom you might recognize from his time on Project Runway—to talk about the upcoming trends. (We also talked about balloons, because, I mean, you know I love balloons.)

FARAN KRENTCIL: Why should Shopbop shoppers buy your clothes? 
DANIEL VOSOVIC:
Because they're deceptively simple. For you, it's a long maxi dress that's just zip-and-go. But for us in the studio, it's about how to create a dress—what fabric, what shape, what closures—that make it easy to look amazing. A girl can wear these outfits as a coverup, a standalone piece, with Converse, with heels and jewelry—that's a hallmark of my clothes.

FK: A lot of your friends are women. Do you run your fashion ideas by them?
DV: Not specifically, but seeing my female friends going through their lives, it's made it really evident that at the end of the day, I don't design clothes that hang on the rack. I'd rather make you feel special from 9 in the morning until 9 at night rather than make "special occasion clothes." You know? Like, shouldn't being alive be a special occasion?

FK: Indeed. You were on Project Runway but it was a really long time ago. Do people still talk to you about it?
DV: The more alcohol people have, the more they want to talk about it. New Yorkers don't do it as much, because in New York City, you'll see Robert Downey Jr. at Starbucks. You'll pass actual important people on the street, so it's not a big deal. But as soon as I go home [to the Midwest] or anywhere outside the city, everyone still wants to talk about Project Runway. And if I see someone with a glass of wine in their hand, I just know they're going to try doing a Tim Gunn impression.

FK: You're currently part of the CFDA Fashion Incubator, a program developed to foster young talent. So how long do you get to, um, incubate?
DV: We have a year left.

FK: Vogue is really involved in the program, aren't they? Did you have to interview with Anna Wintour to get chosen?
DV: No, I actually haven't met Anna Wintour yet. She hasn't come to the incubator, but that's okay, because I wonder sometimes, "When will I be ready to meet her?" Maybe this season? Maybe when I apply for the Vogue CFDA Fashion Fund? Fingers crossed?

FK: Fingers crossed. Are you seeing more women wearing your clothes now—like, women you don't know? 
DV: The first time it happened, there was a girl on the street, and I walked up to her and I was like, "Oh hi, you're wearing my coat." She looked at me like I was a serial killer. In my head, I thought, "Oh my gosh, I look like a crazy person right now."

FK: I interviewed Stella McCartney for ELLE and she told me a similar story. 
DV: This woman was freaked out. I could see it in her eyes. She's like, "What are you doing? Are you hitting on me, are you trying to rob me?" I'm like, "I'm Daniel Vosovic." She had no idea what that meant.  So I'm like, "I designed the coat you're wearing." She goes "Oh!" with this giant smile on her face, so I guess it turned out well.

FK: Please describe your personal style in one sentence. This sentence must include the word "balloon." 
DV: Balloon?! Oh gosh. Okay. My head swells into a big balloon when I wear the most expensive garment I've ever bought. It's a men's Givenchy blazer, and it's my ultimate style balloon!

FK: Good job. 
DV: Phew. That was hard!

Friday, March 1st 2013

He’s the Bop:  Nicola Formichetti


On Wednesday night, Nicola Formichetti will debut his Fall 2013 collection for Thierry Mugler. Half Italian, half Japanese, the designer and creative director has worked for cooler-than-cool magazines like Dazed and Confused, and hotter-than-hot popstars like Lady Gaga (the two still collaborate frequently).

The fun part:

Mr. Formichetti is also a Shopbop collaborator, and he's made an exclusive handbag that's only available through us. It's covered with his signature Nico Panda print, and already carried by fashion It girls like Leigh Lezark and Julia Restoin-Roitfeld.

After coveting (read: seriously considering running away with...) the new bag, we curled up with Mr. Gaga himself for an interview at New York's Standard Hotel.

FARAN KRENTCIL: You've been on the avant-garde fashion circuit for years, but Shopbop is a little bit different. When did you first find out about us?
NICOLA FORMICHETTI: It's true, I've worked on some really outrageous projects, but I'm always working with real girls. The singers, the models, the makeup crew, the assistants, the other editors—we may be making incredible creations but there are still real girls involved who love their denim and their little leather jackets and their boots, you know? So I've heard the women in my studio talk about Shopbop forever.

FK: Tell us about this bag...
NF: It's called the Muglerette, and it's part of my capsule collection of handbags for Mugler. You can carry it as a cross-body, over your shoulder, or just by the handle, and it's hand-painted with little pandas. Nico Pandas! 

FK: Are these the same Nico Pandas that show up as graffiti in London and Paris?
NF: Yeah, you've seen them?

FK: They're still in New York, like, along some of the walls in Chinatown. I think I saw one when I was going to the subway tonight...
NF: That's awesome! I like it when you take the subway to a fabulous party. you see inspiring things that you'd miss if you were in a town car, just texting on your phone the whole time.

FK: True story. Also, some of us aren't fabulous enough to have town cars.
NF: I think it's fabulous to put on a great dress and heels and get on the subway! It's like, old New York. It's tough and glamorous. And you can't get distracted on your phone.

FK: Speaking of phones. You were the fashion director on Lady Gaga and Beyonce's Telephone video...
NF: I was.

FK: How many days did it take to get that song out of your head?
NF: I still hear it in my sleep. It's so catchy, right?

FK: I like the Glee version.
NF: What are you talking about?

FK: Never mind. Okay, last question. Your runway show is coming up. Is this new bag a hint about what we'll see on your Paris catwalk?
NF: Well this bag is only for Shopbop. Not even the Paris runways will have it—it's only for you!

--Faran Krentcil

Friday, February 1st 2013

They’re the Bop: Satu & Celeste Greenberg from Tuleste Market


Rumor has it that Tuleste Market's studio is just downstairs from a Gossip Girl heartthrob's apartment, but that's not why I visited them. (Okay, it's not entirely why I visited them.) Instead, it was to check out sisters Satu and Celeste Greenberg's famous "puffy heart" pendants in person, and to uncover stories about Alicia Silverstone, whom they recently styled for the Sundance comedy Ass Backwards.

Along the way, I got a sneak peek at their newest baubles and a crash course in how to get dressed in a teepee—something the sisters did in high school. (And frankly I sympathize, since my parents' old house was way too small for a walk-in closet, too.)

FARAN KRENTCIL You live and work together, so does that mean you share clothes?
CELESTE: All the time. Every day.
SATU: Usually I forget what's hers and what's mine.
CELESTE: Usually?!
SATU: That's the thing about living with your sister—you basically double your wardrobe. I won't lie; it's really fun. And obviously, our jewelry is community property. We just pile it on as we come downstairs in the morning.

FK: Has it always been that way? Did you share a closet in high school?
SATU: Basically.
CELESTE: Except it was sort of a teepee.

READ MORE They’re the Bop: Satu & Celeste Greenberg from Tuleste Market

Friday, January 18th 2013

She’s the Bop: Jen Steele


I first met Jen Steele the way everyone else in America did: I saw her on an MTV reality show, and later the cover of Seventeen, and thought, who is that girl?

But although the pop culture sweetheart could have kept being an US Weekly character, she took an entry-level job answering phones and fetching coffee at a magazine instead to pursue her real love: fashion.

Now Jen's a stylist in New York City, working with clothes every day (yay!) and inspiring other young women to follow their dreams (aww!) on her Tumblr, The Girls I Know.  I quizzed her in a basement bar on New Year's Eve (true story) about her favorite fashion things for 2013...

FARAN KRENTCIL: You're currently styling Seventeen's beauty shoots. Tell us a makeup trick you've learned from being on-set with so many top makeup artists?
JEN STEELE: Put Aquifer on everything! Eyelids before eyeshadow, eyebrows to keep them in place, the top of your cheekbones for a glow, and your lips for a sexy natural hue.

FK: It's rainy and freezing (in other words: January). Tell us your secret hideout for a cozy cocktail.
JS: I'd say Satsko, a sake bar in the East Village. It's very small and it has really good music. Wanna meet me later?

READ MORE She’s the Bop: Jen Steele

Friday, January 4th 2013

She’s The Bop: Sarah Sophie Flicker


It's easy to be obsessed with Sarah Sophie Flicker—and I should know, since I've been obsessed with her for years.

She's the ringleader of the cabaret / burlesque / protest rally / rock-n-roll show that is The Citizens Band, the American editor of the ultra-hip Lula Magazine, the muse to designers like Anna Sui and Erickson Beamon, and the unofficial mentor of Zooey Deschanel.

She's also the auteur of this internet sensation, a re-vamp of the 1964 song "You Don't Own Me" with fashion starlets like Alexa Chung, Karen Elson, and Lena Dunham.

(Oh, and Blair Waldorf name-checked her once on Gossip Girl, which for me was the ultimate OMG. Anyway, here's the interview...)

FARAN KRENTCIL: When you're onstage with The Citizens Band, you're often performing on a trapeze. How did you start learning aerial tricks, and what happens when you're first learning, and you're terrified?!
SARAH SOPHIE FLICKER: Amanda is an incredibly inspiring and nurturing teacher, but she will tell you I'm no Evil Knievel. I'm about as un-daring as they come. Especially once I became a mother!

FK: It's 1am, you can't sleep, and you're starving. Please name your go-to late-night snack and late-night movie.
SSF: Oh geez, story of my life. I'm always a big fan of popcorn. Late night viewing is usually MSNBC recorded during the day or Democracy Now—totally stupid, considering the news is not the most relaxing viewing.

FK: Name a movie character you'd take to a party.
SSF: Louise Bryant. She was an American journalist and writer. She was best known for her Marxist and anarchist beliefs and her essays on radical political and feminist themes.

FK: I said a movie character!
SSF: Diane Keaton portrayed her in one of my favorite films, REDS with Warren Beaty and Jack Nicholson! We could talk politics and feminism but also wear some lace and berets. My kind of night! Hopefully, she would bring Emma Goldman and Eugene O'Neil with her!

FK: Please choose something on Shopbop.com that you would wear to this party, with or without Eugene O'Neil.
SSF: Lace and berets, of course! This Sonia Rykiel dress, these Jason Wu lace pumps, and this Eugenia Kim hat.

FK: If Xena Warrior Princess and She-ra Princess of Power got into a fight, who would win?
SSF: Oh wow, I have no idea. I suppose it speaks volumes that I haven't watched either of these shows. I was a theater and dance nerd growing up, so if you asked me about a musical theater face-off or silent film showdown, I'd have some answers!

FK: But we all know who would win a Cosette vs. Eponine battle! Anyway, last question: please describe your personal style in one sentence. This sentence must include the word "angel."
SSF: I love this part! This is like the fortune cookie game of ending your fortune with "in bed," although a mandatory "angel" addition is much nicer! Hmm, ok: "Down on her luck revolutionary showgirl... angel?"

--Faran Krentcil

Friday, December 21st 2012

She’s the Bop: Ali Kay


If you've opened a fashion magazine in the last five years, you've probably seen Ali Kay—after all, the Miami native is often the star of Diane von Furstenberg's ad campaigns. (She's also part of the fashion icon's family. This summer, she gave birth to Leon von Furstenberg, Diane's newest grandson!)

But besides being a model and mom, Ali's also quite busy with her own design career.  After launching Keep Me, a range of slimming basics worn by Jennifer Aniston and Rachel Bilson, Kay began working with us at Shopbop (yay!). Take a look at our comfy and chic Bop Basics and you'll see why we adore her.

FARAN KRENTCIL: So many focus on statement accessories or party dresses, but as a designer, you believe basics were the key to fashion happiness. Why?  
ALI KAY: I like basics because I don't shop very often at all, so when I buy something, I don't want it to be overly trendy—I want to like it and wear it forever, or at least until it is worn out.

FK: Please pick something on Shopbop.com that you would wear with one of your basics.
AK: I like this Helmut Lang sweater to wear with jeans and a white tank or T-shirt.

FK: You are from Florida and therefore an expert at this: please reveal how to keep your hair calm at the beach.
AK: My only trick is keeping my hair very long so the body and frizz are weighed down.

FK: No way. I just saw you at Soho House in Miami and your hair looked perfect, even though we were literally on the beach. That can't be your only secret!
AK: A friend of mine from Miami just told me that Oribe Apres Beach Wave and Shine Spray works well!

FK: If Britney Spears and Christina Aguilera had a dance-off, who would win?
AK: From what I remember seeing, Aguilera would definitely win a sing-off but Spears would take the dance-off.

FK: And X Factor has higher ratings than The Voice. Oops, I'm still Team Christina. Anyway. Please describe your personal style in one sentence. This sentence must include the word "pony."
AK: My personal style is simple, easy, comfortable, flattering, and so pony... (Sorry, the baby wants my attention now. Not enough time to be creative here! Ha!)

--Faran

Friday, December 14th 2012

What the FK: C’mon Get Happy


Maybe it's the winter weather, which has driven my workout routine indoors. Maybe it's my boy situation, which is abysmal. Maybe it's because The Real World hasn't been good since the original London season. (Jacinda Barrett, where are you?)

Whatever the reason, I've been kind of down lately—and even repeated viewings of Empire Records haven't helped cure my blues. Which means it's time to pull out the big guns—in this case, my AmEx card. They say stuff can't make you happy, but... well... sometimes it can.

Case in point: this bunny iPhone case from Marc by Marc Jacobs. It's hot pink. It has a bunny face on it. It has a heart for a nose. You can't look at it and not smile. So right now, it's definitely going on my must-have list.

Next up: a Wildfox sweater with a giant cat on it that says "party." Sweaters are cuddly, by definition, and automatically make you feel more comfy. Giant cats, by definition, are hysterical, especially when they're computer graphics and not real. And parties, by definition, are fun—or at the very least, distracting. Sounds like a winner.

READ MORE What the FK: C’mon Get Happy

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