A Spotlight On Cannes 2016 Red Carpet’s Best Dressed Celebrities

Paparazzi at the International Film Festival Cannes 2016, currently held in France from 11 to 22 May 2016.
The festival which sees glamour, talent, lights and celebration during its lifetime. The festival which is a celebration of cinematographic art from all over the world. The festival which showcases the true spirit of writing, culture, visual innovations and socio-economic events of contemporary times. The festival which witnesses fashionista from all over the world every year. Americans own the Oscars, but it is Cannes where the World finds home to some of the best movies, both short length and feature ones.

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Some movies provide a stark reference to the socio-economic face of the society. Some are indispensable and brings an adrenaline rush to the spectators. Some plots are lovely and touch the love strings of the heart. Some are just an honest tribute to awesome story writing. Cannes attracts all kinds of people who celebrate the glory of cinema and carry forward its legacy for generations to come. Apart from cinema and movies, Cannes is also an exhibition for the world’s best fashion. And for the fashion freaks worldwide, Cannes is an opportunity to catch up with the latest fashion trends and celebrity lifestyle. Like every year, this year the prestigious Red Carpet was flooded with beautiful divas and charming ladies.

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Don’t stress yourself if you haven’t caught up with every happening at the 12-day-11-night-long 69th International Cannes Film Festival. Here, we bring to you the crisp of spectacular faces from this year’s Cannes Film Festival’s glamorous Red Carpet. Our list features some of the Best-dressed celebs on the red carpet at the 69th annual international Cannes film festival – viz. actresses Blake Lively (who owned the Red Carpet this year), Anna Kendrick and Kristen Stewart, models Bella Hadid, Kendall Jenner and Petra Nemcova, singer Cheryl Cole, jury member Kirsten Dunst, and Bollywood beauties Sonam Kapoor and Aishwarya Rai Bachchan, in no particular order of beauty and elegance.

Blake Lively
Perhaps you missed out Blake Lively at Cannes 2016? Nah! That’s next to impossible. The 28 year American actress and model stole every Red Carpet she’d walked down. In short – She came, She saw, She conquered. Not once, but again and again. Once she looked like the Disney princess in her Vivienne Westwood ball gown resembling a Cinderella.

The Ma Loute (Slack Bay) actress Blake Lively posed for photographers upon arrival of the screening of her film in a frilled light blue silk dress showing a scooped neckline, a belted bodice, and a ruffled skirt, with a blast of floral design. She was the star of the Red Carpet with each appearance more breath-taking than her last.
Like this one in a Blue Versace (can be bought on ifchich store) resembling Elsa from ‘Frozen’…

…. And then this one in Sparkles with perfect hair, perfect peachy lipstick ….

… and even in a Red Jump Suit, perfectly hiding her baby bump.

One thing to notice in all her gowns is the stark resemblance to all her favourite Disney princesses, which she admitted on Instagram.

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Anna Kendrick
American actresses and singer, Anna Kendrick, oozing the old Hollywood vibes bringing the vintage flavour on the Red Carpet in her canary yellow cocktail gown. The brunette beauty was posing at the premiere night of Café Society in a simple canary yellow cocktail gown featuring fish trail, with a simple diamond necklace and a sleeveless gown, while sweeping her hair on one side.

Kristen Stewart
The hot and happening ‘Personal Shopper’ actress Kristen Stewart wowed every eyeball with her badass and gorgeous looks. She coupled the shiny white outfit with shades, a necklace, and a gold wristwatch.

Bella Hadid
American super model Bella Hadid was the one which stunned the audience in her gorgeous red scarlet Alexandre Vauthier silk wrap gown showing off her amazing endless legs with a contour and highlight on point. The gorgeous dress coupled with diamond earrings, high black pencil heels added some serious bling to her persona and couldn’t let her go unnoticed. Icing on the cake, she wore an unzipped jacket and went braless at the stage of the amfAR’s 23rd Cinema Against AIDS Gala bringing every international media at her doorstep.

Kendella Jenner
Model Kendell Jenner killing it totally with her partially see-through black dress displaying her svelte figure aided with detailed snake design at the premiere of From The Land of the Moon.

Petra Nemcova
The beautiful Czech model, Petra Nemcova bloomed at the paparazzi as she entered the Red Carpet. Cladding a seamlessly flattering Georges Chakra’s red sheath gown, coupled with a beautiful smile, she twirled and posed for the paparazzi. Petra’s seamlessly simple style statement gave a sexy edge to her charming persona.

Cheryl Cole
Singer Cheryl Cole looked stunning as she posed for photographers at the screening of the film Ma Loute (Slack Bay) at Cannes. The 32 year old L’Oreal Paris brand ambassador, Cheryl Cole was looking sensational. Clad in a vibrant Naeem Khan couture gown, she proved that nothing can replace the beautiful smile of a lover. With a tiny ponytail and pink earrings, the Geordie beauty charmed the public with her elegance and sophistication.

Kristen Dunst
On-screen Mary Jane aka Kristen Dunst, who was jury at the Cannes 2016, had made her Cannes journey very much interesting this year. At one event, she was seen wearing a stunning Valentino gown, looking elegant in a nude shade gown after hands-on with Chanel suit in one event while a white Dior in the other.

Aishwarya Rai Bachchan
The undisputed Cannes Queen, Aishwarya Rai Bachchan, proved time and again her title by bringing the riveria to a standstill due to her jawdropping looks. The Bollywood diva, clad in a stunning gold embellished glittering gown by designer Ali Younes, matched with plain makeup and dark maroon lipstick captured the attention of international media. The former Miss World broke the internet …

The International Sports-wear Show postponed its Fall

The CaliforniaMart announced on Jan. 22 that the show would move to April. The decision came at a startling time–less than three weeks before the show was to begin. [http://www.lookshow.com]

According to the Mart, the Fall show was originally supposed to open in March, but its dates were moved to February in order to capture some of the traffic generated by MAGIC, a menswear show scheduled for late February in Las Vegas.

LOOK, which focuses on young contemporary and street-wear resources, was launched as a result of a roundtable meeting Mayor Richard Riordan held a year ago with leaders in L.A.’s apparel industry. The city, which was left without a major apparel trade show after MAGIC moved to Las Vegas, co-sponsored LOOK as part of its effort to attract more retail buyers to the region.

But now, a year after its debut, the Los Angeles trade show will leave its home at the L.A. Convention Center and will be consolidated into the Fall I Los Angeles Fashion Week, scheduled to be held at the CaliforniaMart April 4-8.

“We want to redefine the show,” said a spokesperson from the Mart. “We want to make our April Fall market like the October Spring [California Collections] market,” which ran concurrently with LOOK .

But it is still unclear what buyers and exhibitors can expect from LOOK in April. Officials could not say whether the show would be located in the Cali-forniaMart or in some other location. “We are still in the planning process,” a spokesperson said, adding that there will be an effort to keep LOOK’s funky spirit intact. “We understand that [some LOOK] resources were already located here; therefore, we may have some sort of device that identifies these people as LOOK exhibitors,” she said.

The Mart said the decision to move LOOK was not a financial one, noting that the first two shows were profitable. The Mart also dispelled notions that there were indications of low buyer or exhibitor attendance. As of Jan. 10, 264 exhibitors were signed up for the event. However, the Mart would not release buyer registration numbers.

The young trade show has had a harder time attracting buyers for its Fall dates. XOXO was one manufacturer that decided not to participate in the February show. “When you’re paying out dollars you expect x percentage to return and we, as business people, were looking at this, and [the October numbers] didn’t materialize,” said sales rep Moses Strathern. “It was a flat show.”

Indeed, the change in dates for the show may lure some previous exhibitors back. “[October] was a lonely show,” echoed Robin Foster, owner of the Studio 330 showroom which represents several contemporary lines. “I think the April show is going to be better. They’ve always been concerned about fragmenting buyer traffic, and it makes sense to me to position [the show] closer to the CaliforniaMart.”

News Notes:

Hot Flash!
For live videocam coverage of San Francisco’s Golden Gate Apparel Association Show go to: [http://www.ina.com/alfredo/live.html] throughout show hours Friday, January 24 through Tuesday, January 28!

Clothestime, the Anaheim, Calif.-based juniors retailer, announced the resignations of John Ortega II, chairman and chief executive officer, and Norman Abramson, president and chief operating officer. The resignations were effective Jan. 17. The troubled retailer has been under bankruptcy protection since December 1995. “The creditors committee [which consists of vendors, bankers and factors] felt that the company needed new management,” said David Sejpal, former vice president and chief financial officer, who succeeded Ortega as company chief. “The company has lost money this year. They were looking for higher sales numbers,” he said. Last year, the company hired New York investment firm Financo to explore a possible sale of the company. Clothestime, which currently operates 335 stores, said it plans to emerge from bankruptcy protection this summer.

Federated Department Stores announced that Allen Questrom, 57, will resign his post as chairman and chief executive officer in May after a 30-year career with the company. Questrom said he has accomplished what he set out to accomplish–steering the company out of bankruptcy and overseeing the acquisitions and integration of Macy’s and Broadway Stores, which allowed the department store chain to enter California for the first time since 1988.

“The time is right for me to leave,” Questrom said. James Zimmerman, 52, Federated’s president and chief operating officer since 1988, will succeed Questrom. Federated also announced that California native Terry Lundgren, 44, has been named president and chief merchandising officer of the company. Lundgren had been chairman of the company’s New York-based merchandising and product development division since 1994. The management moves will be complete with the close of business at Federated’s May 16 annual shareholders’ meeting. Federated operates 400 department stores and 150 specialty stores, with more than $15 billion in annual sales.

Maria Echeveste, who worked closely with departing U.S. Labor Secretary Robert Reich on the sweatshop campaign, is expected to leave the Department of Labor. An administration official said the move could be made official within the week. Echeveste will move to the White House as director of public liaison, replacing Alexis Herman, President Clinton’s nominee for Labor Secretary. Herman’s confirmation could come as early as February. Seth Harris, currently acting assistant secretary for policy at the department, is expected to replace Echeveste, said the official. DALLAS

Garment union UNITE (Union of Needletrades, Industrial and Textile Employees) was ordered to pay a $3,000 fine by a Santa Monica Superior Court Judge on Jan. 17 for two incidents of raucous picketing in front of a Guess? Inc. store at 411 Rodeo Drive in Beverly Hills. The union was found in violation of a preliminary injunction that restricted its protests in front of the store. Protesters allegedly shouted, yelled and made threatening gestures to a Guess employee on two separate occasions at the end of last year. An additional fine of $1,000 was suspended by the judge. “Guess has repeatedly …

Textile Report Pretty Prints

Prints are moving out of their ugly phase and heading straight for pretty. The Prada-inspired mismatched colorations and repetitive geometrics have reached their saturation point. Enter the flower. Enter opulence and Eastern influences.

Floral prints in all permutations should prove to be one of the hottest trends at both PrintSource and InPrints, two important trade shows featuring original artwork for prints for the women’s, men’s and children’s wear markets. Both shows enjoyed a three-day run in New York, Jan. 21-23.

Textile Photo Textile Photo

At Inprints, trend forecaster Lee Golde sees the return of femininity and romance in the form of a bouquet of floral offerings. Roses, violets, hyacinths and “sensual, opulent blooms” figure heavily in the season. Abundant bouquets with entwined branches and vines, airy floral and willow leaf sprays and dainty flowers on sheers, lace, plaids and ginghams also play a big part in the botanical extravaganza.

At New York-based THE COLORFIELD Design Studio, exhibiting at Inprints, representative Adam Read believes in the importance of florals. “Flowers are big this Spring [’98 season]. They will be more viney, bouquets, blossoms and branches, leaves, layering of imagery, washed-out lingerie in feeling. [They are] painterly and abstract as well as traditional.”


At LONDON PORTFOLIO, also exhibiting at Inprints, design director Debbie Taylor sees the season encompassing “a lot of florals, in many different ways. Lingerie and romantic stories are important, and we’re layering florals on florals,” she says. “Also, we’re doing florals on textured paper to imitate the texture in fabrics.

Embroidery–another influence Taylor believes has gained importance–is incorporated into the season’s floral trend as well. “We’re doing embroidered florals on chiffon, lace embroidery looks and watercolor florals with embroidered florals on top,” Taylor explains.

KALEIDOSCOPE, a design studio showing at PrintSource, is banking on florals to provide a top-selling trend. “I know it sounds redundant, but beautiful florals are important this season,” explains creative director Debbie Rudoy. “They can be anything from things falling on top of one another to sheer watercolors and tonals in medium to large scale. Not ditsy at all.” Floral colorations range from blues to roses and Bordeaux, all in medium to deep tones. “I don’t have a strong feeling about brights,” Rudoy adds.

Robert DiMauro, creative consultant at Ellen Sideri Partnership, a forecasting service providing trend seminars at PrintSource, expects pinks to accompany the strong floral story. “Softly feminine pinks, aged pinks, potpourri, cosmetic and sepia-tinted pink colorations are an important element of the floral story,” he reports. DiMauro also believes strongly in “the whole purple story,” going so far as to identify mauve as a “new neutral.”

Another direction DiMauro contends is making an impact is opulence–“opulence of quality, magnificent artisanship and…things that aren’t made anymore,” he explains. Included are influences reminiscent of the ’20s as well as Asian influences ranging from Japanese minimalism to Chinese exuberance.

Geometrics are reinterpreted in these trends, but the look is moving away from the prevailing ’60s and ’70s, Prada-esque versions. “There are geometrics that come from the ’50s and ’20s,” DiMauro explains. “As the season moves forward, they are more intellectual and sophisticated.”

Rudoy of Kaleidoscope notes the shift in the geometric story as well. “The Prada thing is dead. Ugly is out,” she states emphatically, adding that geometrics are showing up in a new way in a group she calls Zanzibar, which is all about ethno-primitive looks and “multicultural” ethnics. Geometrics here often show up teamed with florals. “There’s a lot of repetition and a lot of stripe patterning. There are rich, spicy colors,” she reports.

Like DiMauro, Taylor of London Portfolio believes in the ’20s influence and more subtle geometrics as well as the Asian influence “in a big way.” Chinese prints, such as those in blue Ming porcelain, will be important, as will prints with Japanese influence.

Rudoy is also interested in paisleys. “It’s more like sari paisleys, bordering the whole ethnic thing that we see happening,” she says.

The “ethnic thing,” according to Lee Golde, is a global affair. There are Japanese ikats and dense microgeometric Jacquards as well as modern “Afro-tribal graphics.” Indian raj-inspired looks, Victorian-era summer paisleys on sheers with embroidery and beads, madras plaids and flat wood-block paisleys also make an appearance. And then there are the cross-cultural influences, with Victorian chinoiserie and Indochine a la francaise. Look for paintbrush bamboo leaves, lotus blossom branches, Ming porcelains and embroideries to come to the fore, Golde says.

At Colorfield, chinoiserie and ethnic prints emerge as two distinct trends. Its “China Doll” group conjures up images of “Suzy Wong, bamboo leaves, blossom branches and leaf Jacquards,” according to representative Adam Read, while the studio’s ethnic prints are all about “dusty colors, a slightly folk feeling, hippie harem, tiles, madras and Morocco.”…

Atlanta’s Bobbin Show International.

Exhibitors at the Bobbin Show International [http://www.bobbin.com] introduced a commendable array of technological advances to give apparel manufacturers the equipment they want to compete on cost and quality, while at the same time, making the workplace safer.

This year’s show, held at the Georgia World Congress Center in Atlanta from Oct. 1-4, was appropriately nicknamed “A Common Thread,” pointing to the thrust by major exhibitors on information technology and systems integration. Thomas Baur, president of ASSYST INC. [http://www.assyst-intl.com], said of the show, “Integration is the magic thing here. Communication is very important.” He added that major companies like Guess?, The Gap and Levi Strauss were looking for beginning-to-end solutions for their design and manufacturing facilities.

The North American Free Trade Agreement proved that it has had a profound effect on the U.S. cut-and-sew industry. Three major sewing machine exhibitors skipped the show this year, and a fourth, Singer Co., took a much smaller booth that featured no sewing equipment. Most sewing machine manufacturers who did exhibit agreed that business has been tough in the U.S., and that they are looking elsewhere to expand their businesses and increase sales.

Scott Fullerton, director of marketing for AMF REECE INC., explained, “Business is changing. It’s going to Mexico, South America, China and the Far East. One of the biggest challenges is following it and finding out where they’re making the clothes.”

David Siegelman, president of LECTRA SYSTEMS INC, said, “People are cutting here and sending [the parts] offshore for sewing.” Peter Tredwin, vice president of sales and world marketing, agreed, saying, “The only part of the business that’s drifting away from the U.S. is cut-and-sew, which is labor intensive, and that’s going to countries where labor is low cost.” GERBER GARMENT TECHNOLOGY and Lectra Systems vied for the busiest exhibit at the show. Like last year, GGT focused its efforts on the introduction of Gerbersuite, a group of products and systems that provide manufacturers with an array of interconnecting systems used for design and merchandising, pre-production, spreading, cutting and assembly. A video testimonial to the system’s effectiveness by the chief executive officers of five North American apparel makers – Jos. J. Pietrafesa, HIS, Jones New York, Oshkosh B’Gosh and Nygard – was aired at the booth.

GGT also introduced its Gerberspreader S100, a single-ply, single-roll fabric feeder designed for conveyorized automated cutting. It is especially useful for manufacturers that often need to cut many styles and fabrics. In addition to its new products, GGT unveiled updated versions of established systems, including a shuttle configuration to its Samplemaker and an Artworks Version 2.5.

Lectra Systems stressed integration and communication – systems that share information created in any of Lectra’s software throughout the customer’s company. It also emphasized its alliance with Sophis Systems NV and IRIS Graphics in the design area. Lectra added e-mail and Internet access to its Stylebinder software, expanded its ProStyle design software by integrating some modules designed in Sophis.

The TEXTILE/CLOTHING TECHNOLOGY CORP., or [TC]2, demonstrated its new T-shirt sleeve-insertion machine being developed with Jet Sew. The machine has a dual-head sleeve station that automatically sews while the operator prepares the next sleeve and shirt body.

Assyst Inc. showcased its Wild TA500 MC cutter/marker and conveyor for sample cutting. According to Thomas Baur, it eliminates downtime because it enables cardboard stencils to be cut and advanced automatically and requires no interruption to remove cut pieces.

In the software arena, Assyst launched its made-to-measure program for men’s, women’s and children’s apparel and announced the addition of Internet access to its software.

Other notable software innovations at the show included:

Inves-nt (by INVESTRONICA INC.) – a complete line of software extending through the entire apparel production process.
Knitted Fabric Engineering (by JONATHON COPE ASSOCIATES) – a program that optimizes knitting conditions for efficient, defect-free operations that improve machine use and cut costs.
Style Manager 97 (by ANIMATED IMAGES INC.) – with new features including a sewn goods drawing icon tool bar. Also Transfer File, which takes information from one database to another, sending files through the Internet.
A new textile design system (from MODACAD) – with random repeat generator, half-tone mixing, tonal, advanced featuring tools, palette blender and sophisticated color calibration.
SEWN 2000 update (by RICHTER SYSTEMS) – a graphical user interface for its softgoods manufacturing/ distribution system that offers access to the system’s support and query capabilities.
Knit design software (by MONARCH DESIGN SYSTEMS) – which creates realistic simulations of designs and prints them out before going to a sample.
Computer technology was not the only area of innovation at Bobbin, however. In the cutting arena, EASTMAN MACHINE COMPANY, which took a larger booth this year, introduced several new machines at this edition of the show, including its EC3X2 continuous cutting conveyor system (nicknamed the “Beast”). It is designed for nearly all low-ply textiles, including plastics and vinyl. Also new this year are the CR 500 Cradle Fee spreading machine with a touch keypad control panel.

In sewing, AMF Reece’s most revolutionary machine, according to Scott Fullerton, is its S-2000 straight buttonhole, chainstitch sewing machine. It is a simple, completely redesigned machine, using 40 percent fewer parts than the previous model. The company also introduced its S-104-400 (an electronic-stop, pneumatic cord trimmer for eyelet buttonholes), a Lockwelt 2000 (an economical pocket-welter) and its Speedwelt 1000 (an inexpensive chainstitch sewer).

Juki Union Special Inc. demonstrated an array of new equipment, including its prototype Pick and Place label loading device and two machines for T-shirt production.

Other new sewing models included:

the WT264 coverstitcher (PEGASUS CORPORATION OF AMERICA) – for sleeve hemming in the children’s market;
new hemmers, seamers, elastic-band setters and closers (ATLANTA ATTACHMENT COMPANY);
a bottoms air folder (YAMATO);
and a T-shirt bottom hemmer (JET SEW TECHNOLOGIES).
New software and hardware for the embroidery trade came from MacPherson Meistergram (updated software programs and a high-frequency appliqué/embossing machine for PVC and PVC-backed material), Saurer Textile Systems (shuttle embroiderer) and Tajima Industries (a nine-needle, 20-head machine and a chenille machine).
In addition to …

Geometric Lessons

Fabric designers are making mathematics look easy with a strong emphasis on geometric prints for Spring ’97. Indeed, today’s textiles offer discerning manufacturers a complex equation of colors and motifs, including squares, rectangles, circles, cubes and spheres in a popular palette of bright green, yellow and orange. For more fabric trends, which will be showcased at the International Fashion Fabric Exhibition, due in New York on October 21-23 and the Los Angeles International Textile Show , due October 28-30.

Once again, these textile shows will offer manufacturers an abundance of fabric choices, straddling the seasonal fence between Spring and Fall ’97. Geometrics (from simple squares to optical patterns) will share Spring ’97’s spotlight with the continuing strength of ’70s patterns (flower power, stripes and mod motifs). For manufacturers who want a sneak peek at autumn, textiles will move toward luxurious, plush fibers, including rich mohairs, hairy wools, spongy boucles and deep velvets, while prints will range from traditional chalk stripes to paisleys and plaids.…

Fashion Tips

Stash your little black dress in the hall closet,
and go for white. White looks good on almost everyone.
There’s a reason that brides all look beautiful.
White brightens up your face,
It adds a luminous quality to your winter pallor
or lets you show off your tropical tan.

There are no makeup rules with white.
You can go for a natural look, or vamp it
up with exagerrated eyeliner and pale lips for a Mod effect.

Though white means an absence of color,
this season presents a
rainbow of snowy options.

Classic White-
Try a crisp white blouse or soft cashmere sweater,
to update your office attire.

Pearly White-
Perfect for a romantic night out,
or holiday dinners with the family.
Everyone will be envious of your seasonal glow.

Icy White-
Head to toe white on New Years Eve will turn
quite a few heads. Whether its a simple sheath at Ghost,
or flowing pantsuit, You can’t go wrong with white.

Shimmer not Glitter

For a high voltage evening look add a little sparkle.
Couturiers Versace, Valentino, Oscar de la Renta,
Ralph Lauren and others, have all added a spark to their holiday collections.
Everything from bustiers to simple knits
have been transformed with a hint of shine.
The key is subtlety, Think diamonds not rhinestones,
Princess Grace not Liberace.

If you’re too timid to take the glittery plunge,
try accessorizing a simple dress with some beaded pumps,
a la Manohlo Blahnik, or an eye catching evening bag.


No longer limited to the jumprope set,
Ponytails have been turning heads on all the Runways.
Worn high at the crown at the Donna Karan and Calvin Klein shows;
twisted into elaborate knots at Helmut Lang and Max Mara;
or gathered at the nape of the neck at Karl Lagerfeld;
The designers have voted the humble ponytail this season’s perfect “Do”.

Presenting an antidote to last years teased,
sprayed, Mall Hair, the ponytail is appropriate in corporate or couture settings.


With hair gathered back , the focus is once again on the eyebrow.
Although there is no definitive eyebrow look this season,
the focus is on well groomed stylish brows.
The once browless Kristen Mcmenamy has updated her look to a wispy,
bare style which shows off her eyes.

At the Jean Paul Gaultier collection,
models were shown with pasted on vinyl
brows, or double painted brows.

The majority of women opt for a look that falls
somewhere in between the previous two extremes.

The most important thing to remember is not to be
browbeaten by all the trends.
If you are unsure how to get the look that’s right for you
have your eyebrows plucked by a professional for the first time.

To tame unruly brows, N.Y. based makeup
artist Raquella suggests using a spot of
hair gel or vaseline. If your brows are barely there,
she suggests using an eyeshadow slightly darker than the brows, and using a brush gently
filling in the bare spots.

Classic Camel

Topping things off is the classic camel coat.
This is not your Mother’s camel coat
This season offers a melange of styles and colors.
Both Miu Miu and Gianni Versace offer subtle
variations on the Mod look.
Worn well above the knee with schoolboy collars and buttons ,
these coats offer a hip combination of two great looks.

Jean Franco Ferre’ ,Claude Montana and Chanel offer
a looser interpretation of this fashion staple.
Deeper armholes and funkier collars update the classic look.

Whatever your personal style there’s a camel coat out there for you.
If you make only one fashion investment this season
– make yours a camel.…

Costume making hints and Tips

With usual method for making a cloak I use poly/wool because you can get it for about �50 a yard and it looks and feels like wool, but is more washable. And Simplicity pattern no, 8010, which is for fancy dress costume including a Robin Hood outfit with cloak! The hood fits properly and looks good, and I’ve used the pattern four times with various fabrics. The pattern witters on about using vast quantities of felt and Heat ‘n’ Bond, but just ignore that and sew all the seams. Kilt buckles (about �50, use a leather needle) are good for the fastening. There’s also plenty of material left over for matching pouches and suchlike. Also, if you use this pattern and make the cloak bit only about a foot long, you’ve got a great hood.
How to get dye out of costume

Dye! Yeeeurggh! Lime green poster paint – luvverly. Anyway, if you get hit, DON’T use hot water immediately. Rinse it in COLD water as soon as possible and it should just come out. If it’s dried hard when you get home, then spray copiously with Shout! or Biotex spray – give it a real soaking – then machine wash on the lowest possible temperature. (Handwash anything? – you must be joking, life’s too short).
If you get poster paint dye on fake or real fur, or suede, you’re pretty well stuffed.

How to reinforce a collar

What do you use to re-inforce a collar so that it is rigid (sort of like a shirt collar is, or the brim of a peaked cap)? I took apart a peaked cap that I had and it used a type of plastic, but I’m sure there must be easier ways (but I can’t use cardboard ‘cos it needs to be washable)?
Have you come across ‘interfacing’? It comes by the yard/metre or fractions thereof at the fabric shop, and is designed specifically to stiffen up fabric. It comes in different weights; I used a very lightweight grade for the cuffs of my black mage silky swordsman’s shirt, and a much heavier weight for the waistbands of wool trousers. It also comes in (at least) black or white, and as sew-in or iron-on. Get the iron-on stuff.

So, to make a collar, you would cut two collar pattern pieces in the garment fabric, plus one in interfacing, and then fuse the interfacing to the wrong side of one of the main pieces.

To fuse interfacing: get a cleanteatowel very wet, then wring out thoroughly so it’s damp but not dripping wet. Place main fabric collar piece on ironing board, right side down. Put interfacing pattern piece (same shape!) on top, glue side down. Put damp tea towel over the top. Now press the iron, on a hot setting, down onto the interfacing sandwich; pick it up and press it down again, don’t slide the iron around. Do this until the tea-towel isn’t actually steaming any more… and the interfacing should be well glued.

If you do get it a bit wrong, you can usually manage to peel it off again… it will become anchored firmly when you eventually sew through all three layers of collar. Sew round three sides, leaving the side open where the collar will fit to the main garment, then you can turn the collar inside out so the interfacing is hidden inside, and attach collar. (pin it and experiment first, so that you get the sandwich in the right order before actually sewing it up! I regularly get it wrong.)

If interfacing isn’t sufficiently stiff, you can use stiffened fabric which again is sold just for this purpose, but I think it’s sew-in only.


Photo-Mount aerosol spray adhesive (for graphic designer types, you use it on paper and card and it can be lifted and repositioned) is great for positioning heraldic devices on tabards before sewing. Don’t use too much, or it will get all sticky, and it will be difficult to get a needle through the material.
Pressing and finishing seams

I think that one of the most important things to do when making costume, which makes the item into a professional looking garment which hangs well, is to press all the seams and finish them off properly. It also makes costume last much longer.


When I’m costume-making, I have the ironing board set up, and after sewing each seam on the machine, I press it. This involves laying the garment along the board seam upwards, with the raw edges of the seam allowance opened out flat, and pressing the seam open using a damp cloth as explained above, until the cloth isn’t steaming anymore. (If you’re in lazy mode, use the steam iron direct onto the material – but pressing is better for delicate fabrics.) Although this adds time and aggro to making the kit, the finished garment will hang straighter and better. By the way, I’ve found that I can press thin leather if I’m careful, but always on the wrong side (i.e. the side that won’t be seen), otherwise it can leave marks.

Seam allowances

Unfinished, raw seam edges will fray: unless you’re using non-fraying fabric, finish the seams properly and the kit will last much much longer and not fall apart in the washing machine. Check the seams on ready-made LRP costume, for an indication of how well it’s been made and how long it will last. If the seams have been left raw and look as if they might unravel, then beware.
I use pinking shears most of the time (those large sewing scissors with zigzag blades) and when the garment is completely finished, just cut off the excess all the way down each raw edge, parallel to the seam. I use half inch seam allowances (i.e. when sewing a seam, I sew the fabric layers together half an inch from the raw edges) and cut about a quarter inch off. Don’t cut too close to the seam, or …

What is an Award Jacket?

An AWARD JACKET is a start and a finish. It’s a person’s first real badge of adult-hood—of accomplishment and victorious memory.
It’s a goal achieved, after years of dreams and sweat.
An AWARD JACKET is a reminder of bruises and aching muscles. It’s a symbol of belonging, a mortar of team and camaraderie…..of friendships earned.
It is moments of victory and defeat, strung like white and crimson banners in the vast stadium of memory.
It is the leather of adventure, the wool of combat and heroics. —The excited hum of competition—cheers that burst like sky-rockets.
It’s the color of loyalty, discovered and developed.
In its creases and folds are loomed and tanned all the efforts of a person to become an adult.
It is union between language, creed or color.

Most people have seen an award jacket. It is most commonly being worn by high school students. The jacket has a wool body and leather sleeves. The jacket has school colors with stripes on the collar, wrist, and waist bands. The jacket can be adorned with a school varsity letter, school name and mascot, student’s name, year of graduation, sport or activity, special accomplishments and many other significant happenings. The adornment can be either embroidered to the jacket or a chenille (embroidered or stitch patch) attached to the jacket.

The jacket is just a piece of clothing with awards attached to it. But what about the tradition that brought about today’s award jacket. This is what VLAS (Varsity Letter Award Society) will try to explore. The purpose of VLAS is to understand and preserve the tradition of the award jacket. This understanding will involve the evolution that has lead up to today’s award jacket. With this first issue of LEATHER SLEEVES it is hoped that some of the tradition can be shared. Also it is hoped that readers can help in this exploration and discovery and help in the gathering of knowledge and the preservation of this tradition.

The question of how did the tradition of the leather sleeved jacket come about is a question that has been asked by many high school students to their parents. The parent could only answer that it was a tradition in high school when they went to school. But how did it start, is what sparked this journey. Inquires were made of the retailers who sell jackets. These retailers had little knowledge of the origin of the jacket. Then information was requested from jacket manufactures. This was much more rewarding in obtaining information. Then it was off to the library, where nothing could be found that has been written about the tradition of award jackets. Then it was research in high school and college picture yearbooks and sports history books. This was a very valuable source. Verbal history was another valuable source to obtain information from people who have had award jackets. VLAS is trying to answer the question of how the tradition of the award jacket has come about and how it is practiced today.

History of the Letter Award Tradition

To trace the origin of the award jacket, we must first consider the origin of the letter and how the letter and jacket or sweater have come together. The athletic letter seems to have originated through the start of organized sports. Sports have been around for many years. Take English futballe. This started as a game between towns about 1000 A.D. using an inflated cow bladder. There were no rules other than getting the ball into the center of opposing towns. There was no limits as to the number of players. This was a combination of soccer, vandalism, and modified homicide. In the American colonies, there was another game like baseball called townball. It was a stick and ball game played as a mass-participation sport. All the early sports had few rules and little organization. This changed in 1846 when the New York Knickerbockers started as an organized baseball club. The Knickerbockers, in 1850, added style with the introduction of white flannel shirts, long trousers, and straw hats as a type of uniform. It is unknown if any letter or emblem was added to this early uniform. There may be some proof that emblem or letters were used in this period. There is a frequently published print of Union soldiers during the American civil war participating in a baseball game in the prison compound in Salisbury, NC. The print shows many participants wearing long sleeve shirts and long trousers with some type of letter on the left side of the shirt. During this period, English soccer clubs had been using colors to identify themselves. In the 1860s, badges started to appear on club jerseys. In 1871, the first international rugby team jersey bore a large embroidered rose over the heart (left side).
It seems with the advent of organized sports, there was a need for uniforms. There was an addition need for identifications which was satisfied by the use of emblems or letters. In 1865, the Harvard baseball team added an old English ‘H’. The ‘H’ was embroidered on the gray flannel shirt. The football team started to use the ‘H’ in 1875. It is interesting to note that for 25 years following the introduction in 1865 of the letter, it was the practice for the team captain to allow certain players who played in the most important games (Yale or Princeton) to keep the ‘H’ jerseys as an award. If a player did not play in an important game, the player had to return the jersey at the end of the season. Awarding the ‘H’ jersey may have been the birth of the letter as an award.

The sweater was first regulary used by the 1891 “Nine” (baseball) and was black with a small Crimson ‘H’ on the left breast. It is not known when the letter sweater came to high schools. The earliest example that VLAS has come across is in the 1911 yearbook of Phoenix Union High …