The Style File Daily Cheat Sheet

(wwd)Macy's and Bloomingdale's Support the Arts

"In an age of austerity, Macy’s Inc. is helping the arts in New York City. The Macy’s division for the first time is sponsoring Public Theater’s Shakespeare in the Park, while the Bloomingdale’s division will spotlight “The KedsWhitney Collection” to support the Whitney Museum of American Art. “We have a lot of wonderful corporate sponsors, but in this economy it does get harder,” acknowledged Public Theater’s director of development, Casey Reitz, backstage at the Delacorte Theater in Central Park Tuesday evening, where Macy’s had a picnic preceding a performance of “The Winter’s Tale.”  “This is a natural connection between two iconic New York institutions,” said Robin Reibel, Macy’s group vice president for media relations and cause marketing. “This is high-quality theater in a gorgeous setting, free of charge.” Macy’s went the extra yard providing some men’s linen shirts for the costuming. The store also supports the Metropolitan Opera and New York City Ballet. Bloomingdale’s will spotlight artist-designed Keds sneakers July 8 to 21 in its Lexington Avenue windows, which will go interactive with Foursquare, touch screens and art students performing their craft on canvas to celebrate American art. The Keds designs by conceptual artist Jenny Holzer and painters Laura Owens and Sarah Crowner will be sold at Bloomingdale’s with a percentage of the profits donated to the Whitney. The artists exhibited at the museum’s biennial, and the all-American Keds brand is sponsoring the Whitney’s summer season. Holzer’s look for Keds, which invokes one of her text series, “Survival: Protect Me From What I Want,” will be followed by Owens and Crowner’s interpretations in September. “It’s great that Keds and the Whitney are friends,” said Holzer. “I have a renewed respect for shoe designers.” Kristin Kohler Burrows, president of Keds, said the Whitney project is “the personification of our new brand proposition and the wide range of creative possibilities Keds offers.” read more

(market watch)'Fashion Forward' Consumers Drive Apparel and Other Category Spending

"Successful apparel and brand marketers recognize the need to take a fresh and multi-faceted look at today's consumer," said Jim Harold, vice president for Acxiom's retail group. "This new study provides a particularly insightful view of consumers through the lens of fashion preferences and explores variations in each preference group's intentions and expected shopping behavior -- and not just in the apparel category." The above-mentioned groups include:

-- Fashion Forward -- Consumers who are looking for the newest trends and styles

-- Conservative/Traditional -- Shoppers who prefer a more traditional look

-- Value Driven -- Consumers who seek value and comfort rather than fashion

Research showed that of the consumers surveyed, half are Value Driven, 34 percent are Conservative/Traditional and 16 percent are Fashion Forward. Though it's the smallest of the three groups, Fashion Forward women in particular spend on average 1.7 times as much on apparel as Conservative/Traditional women and 2.7 times as much as Value Driven women. "Surprisingly, women in the Fashion Forward group -- regardless of income -- spend more on average than women of the other two groups," Harold said. "Fashion Forward women collectively account for 32 percent of total women's apparel purchases, which is approximately equal to the same dollar value as either of the other two groups. "What they lack in numbers, they make up for in spending power. And to underscore their importance further, Fashion Forwards indicate an intention to spend roughly twice as much as other groups in categories such as electronics, home furnishings, sporting goods and health and beauty aids. read more

(wwd)Retailers Limp Into Second Half

"The first half of 2010 ended Wednesday with consumer enthusiasm for apparel weak, retail stocks battered and fashion’s hopes for the year resting heavily on the fate of the back-to-school and holiday seasons. While there’s little indication the always fickle, suddenly thrifty teen crowd will come to the industry’s rescue, one symbol of the holiday season sees reason for hope: Saint Nick. “I can’t see any dramatic change downward,” said Robert Mindte, chief executive officer and founder of, which has a network of about 200 Santas-for-hire. “All the mall-type jobs I had last year, we’re having again this year. Some of them are extending the hours somewhat,” adding 10 or 20 percent. Retailers will be fortunate to generate those kinds of increases as they head into the last six months of the year. Economists and analysts expect consumers to remain conservative about their spending against a weak economic backdrop and growing uncertainty that reduced retail stocks 13 percent in May, leaving them down 6.2 percent so far this year. “Spending and sales growth are probably going to moderate a bit; we think the first quarter may well be the best quarter of the year in terms of spending growth,” said Scott Hoyt, senior director of consumer economics at Moody’s, noting first-quarter sales rose 2 percent from the fourth quarter." read more

(wwd)Chico's Sues Caché

"Chico’s FAS Inc. and its White House|Black Market Inc. division believe Caché Inc. attempted to add to its cachet illegally. The retailer has accused two former employees, Rabia Farhang and Christine Board, of supplying Caché, their subsequent employer, with confidential information and trade secrets. The defendants were WH|BM merchandise managers until the fall and allegedly provided rival women’s apparel retailer Caché with product design and developmental plans regarding WH|BM’s seasonal lines through this year, according to court papers filed Tuesday in New York State Supreme Court. WH|BM asserted that Farhang, currently Caché’s executive vice president and general merchandise manager, and Board, a senior merchant, were “intimately involved in the conceptualization and development of WH|BM’s 2010 spring, summer and fall seasonal lines, including color palettes, themes and prints, designed styles and outfits.” Charges against the retailer and the two merchants include breach of contract, misappropriation of trade secrets, unfair competition, theft-conversion and breach of fiduciary and other legal duties. The plaintiff has requested a jury trial and is seeking unspecified compensatory damages, attorneys’ fees and costs and punitive and exemplary damages." read more

(Instyle)Calvin Klein Recreates Iconic Clueless Dress

"Cher’s wardrobe in Clueless literally changed my life and apparently I’m not alone: Ilaria Urbinati, celebrity stylist and co-owner of the L.A. boutique Confederacy,gushed about her love of the film’s fashion when she was introduced to Calvin Klein Creative Director Francisco Costa. “I sort of geeked out on him, [explaining] how my formative-years love of Calvin Klein was partly based on the little white minidress Alicia Silverstone wears in Clueless,” Urbanati told us. “I reeanacted the entire scene with Cher and her father—‘Cher, what are you wearing?’ ‘A dress!’ ‘Says who?’ ‘Calvin Klein!’—and of course I said, ‘Francisco, you need to remake that dress!’”Costa was so taken with her passion that he went home, watched the scene on YouTube, had the original dress pattern dug out of the archives in Italy and had it re-created exclusively for Urbinati’s boutique. (Confederacy will begin carrying pieces from Costa’s Calvin Klein Collection this fall.) The dress, which retails for $915 and comes in Cher’s original white as well as a shade Urbinati describes as a “HOT” red, is being unpacked as we speak and will in no time." read more