>> INSIDER WIRE —Kanye West making bunny ears behind Marc Jacobs as he gets interviewed; Carine Roitfeld and Emmanuelle Alt sitting together at Armani Prive, wearing the same Alaia stilettos; Charlotte Gainsbourg, front row in Balenciaga, politely refusing interviews . . . just another day at the shows. [Kanye Universecity, FWD]
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According to Nicholas Ghesquiere, the goal was to have Charlotte embody the "more mature" collection with a severe chignon, arch makeup, and angular couture poses, directly contrasting with her everyday laidback appeal.
In between point A and point B, however, the essence of Charlotte has been lost — I can't even see her in these pictures. I know that Nicholas has been playing the idea with stiff women robots for some seasons now (those Spring 2007 Tron-inspired leggings, the stances in Jennifer Connelly's ads), but this time, it's not a good representation of the collection, which albeit hard-edged, has an undeniably sexy facet to it.
>> Is Nicholas Ghesquiere getting starstruck? For the second season in a row, he's chosen to go celebrity: Jennifer Connelly for Spring, and now Charlotte Gainsbourg for Fall.
Granted, both women embody the Ghesquiere girl — Charlotte is well-known to be his muse, and Jennifer a good friend — but to hear him describe the reasoning behind his choice is striking, considering that he has built Balenciaga to be a true blue fashion-for-the-sake-of-fashion label, rather than a fashion label devoted to upping its star wattage. Behold, he sounds smitten with actresses:
They are used to playing characters and go deeper into the image. There's definitely a celebrity effect when you shoot an actress. There's a real frisson.
The Spring 2009 campaign cast will tell us all — three makes a trend. Until then, enjoy the first look at the Fall 2008 Balenciaga campaign, shot by David Sims and featuring an archly posed Charlotte Gainsbourg, with the new Balenciaga store in LA forming the backdrop.
>> The models may be winning the ad campaign race for Fall — besides a couple of notable exceptions, Charlotte Gainsbourg for Balenciaga and Vanessa Paradis for Miu Miu — but celebrities are taking over at the CFDA Awards on Monday night.
The Womenswear Designer of the Year award will be presented by the trio of Victoria Beckham (representing nominee Marc Jacobs), Eva Mendes (for nominee Calvin Klein), and Maggie Gyllenhaal (fronting nominee Proenza Schouler). Meanwhile, Tina Fey and Amy Poehler are announcing the Accessory Designer of the Year, and Mandy Moore is doing the Swarovski Award honors. Let's hope there still some models out there in the crowd for posterity . . .
Nicholas Ghesquiere caved to the celebrity draw for Spring, choosing Jennifer Connelly to front his floral-filled Balenciaga ad campaign.
Although you all weren't fans of the result, Mr. Ghesquiere must have seen something he liked because now rumors are swirling that he's tapped French actress, Balenciaga muse, and Parisian-chic style icon Charlotte Gainsbourg to appear in his Fall campaign. Do you think she would be a good choice?
I think her off-kilter beauty is a fine match for the house. But you may recall his Fall collection was pretty severe, I don't know if seemingly shy Charlotte can pull it off. We'll have to wait and see!
I first became an admirer of Charlotte Gainsbourg as an actress, after her subtly naive performance in the 1996 film adaptation of Jane Eyre (which I love, by the way). But it's no surprise that the actress is now turning to music: She is, after all, the spawn of legendary French singer/eccentric Serge Gainsbourg, with whom she recorded her first album, Charlotte For Ever, at the age of 13.
Now, Gainsbourg the singer is all grown-up, and her first adult solo album, 5:55, was just released in the U.S. this week. The album flicks at French tradition, with pianos and bells that call to mind gray Paris afternoons, while also feeling very modern. I particularly love this ethereal, romantic track "The Songs That We Sing," with its fluttering, insect-like strings. To listen, read more