Tag Archives: Tadashi Shoji

Behind the Scenes of my NYFW Experience

Spring/Summer 2014 Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week was absolutely epic!  I would go as far as to say that this has been the most groundbreaking fabulous fashion week of all time.  I am slightly biased though, as this was my first time actually attending fashion week, and it was every bit as magical as I thought it would be!  I saw some gorgeous, life changing shows and presentations and had the opportunity to meet some legendary style icons.  Basically, I had the most wonderful time ever!  I hope you enjoy my snapshots from my two days of ecstasy and please forgive the less crisp pics, this is NYFW as captured through my phone.

I also need to give a special thank you to Zeba Rashid, Anne Caruso, and Dena Giannini.  You made my epic fashion week whirlwind possible!  I can NEVER thank you enough!

 TADASHI SHOJI

Tadashi Shoji

Tadashi Shoji

Tadashi ShojiThe first show I attended for NYFW (and ever) was Tadashi Shoji.  This was the most incredible way to kick off fashion week!  His designs are elegant, modern, and effortlessly beautiful!  It was full of show stoppers, which was not surprising at all, but absolutely breathtaking.

REBECCA MINKOFF

Rebecca Minkoff

Rebecca Minkoff

I legitimately had goosebumps throughout the entire Rebecca Minkoff show–being in the second row probably had something to do with this too!  Janelle Monae opened the show and performed throughout setting the scene for a truly incredible experience for the audience.  The show was full of energy, color, prints, and the most fierce gladiator sandals EVER!

HONOR

Honor NYFW

Honor NYFWThe Honor show was unique and a true performance!  The atmosphere was vibrant and simply beautiful!

NOVIS

Novis Fashion Week

Novis

Novis Fashion Week

I must admit this Fashion Week was my first introduction to Novis and I am beyond obsessed! I literally wanted everything shown in the presentation!  The presentation was made up of vibrant colors and prints, sheer accents, and basic yet fabulous pieces!  Obsessed is really the only word I have for the Novis presentation.

TOME

Tome

Tome NYFW

The Tome presentation was the definition of feminine elegance! Love!

PARTY PICS

Tadashi Shoji

Me & Tadashi Shoji at the after party for his show!! His success, creativity and humble spirit are such an inspiration!

Louise Roe

I stalked Louise Roe after the Rebecca Minkoff show and she was kind enough to take a pic! She said I looked chic and I almost died!

Aimee Song

Aimee Song (Song of Style) is another style icon of mine! She is fabulous and was so friendly!

Fashion Police

I am a HUGE Fashion Police fan and meeting George Kotsiopoulos was an absolute dream come true! He was so sweet & wonderful!

DC does NYFW

DC does NYFW! I had a fabulous time with these fabulous ladies! (Diana, Irina, Ally, Liz, Meaghan)

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Summer Head Scarf

I am slightly obsessed with scarves!  It is actually kind of shocking that this is my first post dedicated to them.  I live in scarves in the Fall, Winter and Spring but have had a hard time incorporating them into my ensembles in the stifling summer heat until now.  The easy and perfect for summer solution: the head scarf!  Why I have not embraced the head scarf sooner I do not know.  There are so many ways to rock a head scarf allowing you to elevate your look to a whole new level.  The gorgeous scarf featured in today’s post that inspired me to experiment and ultimately embrace the head scarf was a gift from none other than Tadashi Shoji.  Not only was my interview with him life changing, this gift was as well.  The head scarf adds vibrance to any outfit making it the perfect finishing touch!  As I plan to incorporate this into as many looks as possible, I highly recommend you experiment and find the wrap that suits you best!

Head Scarf

Scarf: c/o Tadashi Shoji (found here), Sunglasses: Ray Ban (found here)

Overalls

Romper: Hive & Honey (found here), Sandals: DV by Dolce Vita (found here)

Summer Scarf

There are so many interesting ways to tie a head scarf! The possibilities are endless!

Head Scarf

When picking a scarf go with a vibrant color or pattern!

Jumper

It’s no secret that I love a good romper! I have been living in this one all summer!

Denim Jumper

Details

Tadashi Shoji

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Loving Leather

For my interview with the iconic Tadashi Shoji I turned to one of my style staples and the timeless black and white “trend.”  I must admit I was very nervous leading up to the interview so wanted to be in something that I not only felt great in, but something I also felt comfortable in.  Now that I think about it this is quite in line with Shoji’s philosophy.  So I turned to leather.  Leather is huge this spring and is so luxurious!  If real leather isn’t your thing go for the vegan alternative, which is equally as fabulous!  I am all about mixing textures and wearing leather is the perfect way to dabble with this.  Try integrating leather into your wardrobe with an unexpected top, with a classic jacket or accessory, or just go bold and pair leather with leather.

 

leather

Top: Mason (found here, similar here), Skirt: H&M (similar here & here), Shoes: Zara (found here), Bag: Alexander Wang (found here)

black and white

This top is so wonderful because it has many different textures (hello leather) and silhouettes. Peplum is also one of my favs for spring!

black and white

A black pump is a wardrobe staple, especially when black and white color blocking is so big this spring.

black and white leather

As always, it is in the details

All photos courtesy of Sara from High Fashion 4 Less

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Interview of a Lifetime

Last week I had the incredible honor of interviewing Tadashi Shoji on the 30-year anniversary of the iconic brand and on the eve of Tadashi Shoji’s acceptance of Marymount University‘s prestigious Designer of the Year award. Past recipients of the award have been Diane Von Furstenberg, Michael Kors, Oscar de la Renta and Carolina Herrera, just to name a few. When I asked Shoji what this award meant to him he said he felt humbled to be in such incredible company.  Humble is definitely one word I would use to describe him, hard working, thoughtful and creative genius are the others.  All attributes that have led to his monumental success.

Let me set the scene for you.  I was over excited (of course) to meet such a visionary and established designer, not even meet, but interview!  I entered a small conference room where Shoji and his PR genius, Zeba, were patiently waiting.  I was full of nervous and excited energy, but was instantly calmed by Shoji’s centered presence.  He is larger than life, but relatable at the same time.  Upon entering the room, I showered him with copious amounts of compliments, partly because I was nervous and couldn’t stop, but mostly because I meant it all and felt it had to be said.  Instead of brushing it off as if he had heard it all before he was grateful and appreciative of my overzealous kind words.  This genuine sentiment carried throughout the interview.  Shoji did not get where he is today, because he accepted his success and rested on his impressive laurels, he got where he is today and continues to climb, because he is hard working and continues to “work harder than before.”  He describes his career as “still in the process,” always unfinished and always reaching for more and I found this to be incredibly inspiring.  This attitude also comes from the industry he exists in, because with success comes insurmountable amounts of pressure, which he cooly describes as “very high.”  When I asked him what advice he had for people just starting out their careers he said work hard and work towards longevity. A career is not built overnight and Shoji’s career was certainly not built overnight.

Shoji, born in Japan, studied high art, as he calls it, until the early 70s when he moved to the U.S.  He was in need of a visa and a student visa was the easiest to obtain so he attended Los Angeles Trade Technical College and because of this he says he became a designer “accidentally.”  Shoji first realized that clothing design was an art form in itself (low art as he calls it) when he had to drape his first dress on a dress form, he likened this to sculpting.  He also attributes this moment to his respect for the female form, which he describes as a “canvas.”  Shoji is one of the most thoughtful contemporary designers, making clothing for real women with real bodies.  Shoji’s gowns always pepper the red carpets during award season and are more often than not worn by women that aren’t a size 2 or 4 or 6.  Shoji’s main goal with evening wear is “to make women’s figures more beautiful” and the women wearing his gowns “more comfortable.”  Shoji explained his gowns as being as comfortable as a tee shirt while being red carpet ready.  I mean really, how thoughtful is that!  He spends a great deal of time making sure his dresses make sense.  For example the arm holes must be flattering, while also having enough stretch that you can easily drive a car in.  Something that real women are likely to do in his dresses.  I had the honor of wearing a Tadashi Shoji gown for an Inauguration special and I can tell you first hand that the dress was an absolute delight!

This thoughtfulness helps propel him forward, but his determination, meticulous attention to detail and intuition is what keeps his brand on top.  Shoji is in the weeds of the business, designing of course, but making sure shipments go out on time, opening new stores, and jet setting around the globe to promote his brand and gain inspiration and insight.  When asked what influences his collections the answer is everything.  The female body, history, art and shockingly the economy.  Shoji was aware of the recession and designed his line accordingly, which allowed them to emerge unscathed.  Shoji perceptively described fashion as a combination of “commerce” and “art,” but he is careful to “never sacrifice art for commerce.”   He also thoughtfully explained that pricing is part of art and design.  When speaking about the economy he shows his true worldliness by explaining one must always continue learn.  Shoji explained that fashion is a component of life, but is not everything, there is so much more that must be explored and appreciated, economics, politics, literature, history, and art being such things.  His awareness and thirst for knowledge is genuine, inspiring and give his designs the “unexpected” edge he strives for.

I left the interview inspired and as cheesy as it sounds ready to take on the world.  For such a surreal experience I found it to be grounding, leaving with the understanding that hard work is the only thing that will get you where you want to go and that is something everyone is capable of.

Tadashi Shoji and I after the interview

Tadashi Shoji and I after the interview

Tadashi Shoji

Tadashi Shoji at an intimate press conference

Shoji with the Marymount University students before the fashion show.

Shoji with the Marymount University students before the fashion show.

The child models working it backstage

The child models working it backstage

Marymount University

Scenes from the runway

Tadashi Shoji

Right after we finished the 30 minute interview. I don’t think my smile could be any bigger!

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