All posts by malloryhughes

OPINION: Chicago ready to rise in luxury fashion

By Mallory Hughes

Christian Dior. Versace. Rebecca Minkoff.

These three luxury fashion labels are only the most recent brands about to make their mark in the Gold Coast, opening stores and joining other industry giants already in residence including Hermés, Lanvin and Prada.

The flood of single-designer stores opened by well-known international fashion labels could be a major challenge to local boutiques. But, with luck, Chicago’s fashion scene will be vital enough that both will prosper. As single-designer luxury storefronts rapidly enter the market, they will only invigorate the local fashion scene. Continue reading

WSJ columnist’s new book explains fashion, celebrity relationship

By Mallory Hughes

“This is the end of fashion!”

Teri Agins, veteran fashion columnist for The Wall Street Journal and author of two books about the business of fashion, said this in 1999 after Giorgio Armani produced the first collection of men’s suits without lining to make them more comfortable.

In October, roughly 16 years later, Agins, The Wall Street Journal’s first fashion reporter, published her latest book, “Hijacking the Runway: How Celebrities Are Stealing the Spotlight from Fashion Designers” (Penguin Random House, $28). In it she explains how celebrities have simultaneously revolutionized and marginalized the art of style.

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History & fashion of the Mag Mile on display

By Mallory Hughes

“Upper Michigan [Avenue] will be properly designed for magnificence, dignity and character, and will be like no other
commercial thoroughfare in the world.”

– Chicago real estate developer Arthur Rubloff, 1947

Imagine a time in Chicago when North Michigan Avenue, now unofficially known as the Magnificent Mile, wasn’t lined with vertical shopping malls and skyscrapers. Imagine a time, instead, when Michigan Avenue between Ontario and Oak streets was just an understated thoroughfare, linking Chicago’s bustling downtown centered at State and Madison to the residential Near North Side.

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Local fashion designer, new mom expands business to Shanghai

By Mallory Hughes

Native Chicago designer Christina Fan is hoping to change the way women wear furs.

In 2008, Fan designed and launched C/FAN, a women’s wear collection, out of her apartment in Wicker Park. Responding to demand, the line quickly evolved into a contemporary fur accessories brand, featuring hats, scarves, vests and sweatshirts made from rabbit, lamb, fox and raccoon.

“It was born out of necessity due to our weather,” Fan said. “I wanted to offer something that was playful, season-less and easy to wear.” Continue reading

From pop-up shops to permanent storefronts

By Mallory Hughes

All of those empty storefronts that plague the city of Chicago will be no more. That’s the goal at least, as pop-up shops spring up in neighborhood after neighborhood.

Storefront, a San Francisco-based company that launched in Chicago in July, specializes in helping retailers, designers and artists nail down short-term leases in prime shopping spots.

The business has been the gateway for about 100 pop-ups in the Chicago area and more than 1,000 in New York City, Los Angeles and San Francisco.

“Pop-ups are a way to test the market, different neighborhoods in a city, and a chance to get offline,” said Bryan Steel, a member of the Storefront marketing team. Continue reading

Chicago Men Stay on Trend

By Mallory Hughes

Hot on the heels of the Men’s Fashion Weeks in Milan and London, Paris Fashion Week, which closed on Friday, offered one last look at luxury menswear for the upcoming Fall-Winter 2015 season.

When the latest designs hit the European runway, Chicago can seem like a world away. But local men’s boutiques, department stores and couture storefronts are already making decisions about next years merchandise, sending buyers to the shows and placing orders. Continue reading

Fashion exists despite the winter weather

By Mallory Hughes

It’s only two weeks into the New Year and Chicagoans are already fighting frigid wind chills. For almost a week, the lows were below zero when the average temperature this time of year is 31 degrees Fahrenheit.

Some people allow their sense of style to shine through all of those layers, but others strive to simply stay warm in the Windy City. Here’s how people on the streets of Chicago’s Loop managed to stay warm, look good or both.

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