Hermès takes Manhattan



Hermes AW24 New York Theo Werner

My SS24 trend report picked up on the major appetite for leather, and of course Hermès comes top of the leather lust list.

Hermès just showed the second ‘chapter’ of its AW24 collection in New York – a seductive, cinematic portrayal of wearable-yet-sexy (for straight-laced Hermès) leather trousers, jumpsuits, outerwear and abundant Mapplethorpe-esque caps that some thought dominated the show, but I rather loved. (Once a stylist always a stylist.)

Dior paid a similar tribute to Manhattan recently – although slightly less well received. Anyway, expect to see variations on the black leather jumpsuit, mariner caps and voluminous jackets flooding the market, not forgetting the all-important Hermès Kelly pocket belt. And if you can’t commit to those, there’s always a silk Hermès carré, folded and tucked into a skinny leather belt.

Hermes AW24
HERMES AW24 Filippo Fior
HERMES AW24 Filippo Fior
Hermes aw24 HERMES AW24 Filippo Fior
HERMES Aw24
HERMES AW24 Filippo Fior
Hermes Kelly pocket belt

WORDS: Disneyrollergirl / Navaz Batliwalla
IMAGES: Hermès AW24
NOTE: Most images are digitally enhanced. Some posts use affiliate links and PR samples. Please read my privacy and cookies policy here

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Quote of the day: Naomi Rea, Artnet News



Art Basel Shop tote

“Access to this world is aspirational and offering a piece of it at a more affordable price point expands the customer base significantly. Now, the casual visitors over the weekend…can say they bought something at Art Basel and can signal their membership in the art tribe.”
Naomi Rea, Artnet News acting editor-in-chief, Vogue Business

Sarah Andelman’s latest venture at Art Basel is a “Colette” for the art set.

It makes perfect sense.

Opening this week, the Art Basel Shop is a physical-only (aka no online presence) ‘ephemeral concept store’ for Basel-goers, selling gift-shop style art memorabilia and lifestyle products for merch lovers. Think Keith Haring x Caran d’Ache pens, David Shrigley prints and Carrie Mae Weems plates.

Read more here and here.

WORDS: Disneyrollergirl / Navaz Batliwalla
IMAGE: Art Basel Shop
NOTE: Most images are digitally enhanced. Some posts use affiliate links and PR samples. Please read my privacy and cookies policy here

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On “Mid” creativity, wild sincerity and the curse of the algorithm



Eric - Benedict Cumberbatch
I’m halfway through watching Eric on Netflix thanks to a few gushing Facebook recommendations.

I don’t watch many streamed series. A combination of shattered attention span and a default anti-hype setting means I prefer to wait till the fuss dies down and then I… don’t get round to it.

Anyway, I’m liking Eric (above), the 80s crime drama about a dysfunctional puppeteer whose son goes missing and the various sub-plots woven within. I’m particularly enjoying the early-80s New York setting, cultural references, cinematic colour grading and ace music score, along with the suspenseful pace of the storytelling.

Is it blowing my mind? Not quite. But it’s good enough. The New York Times has a coincidental opinion piece pondering the “mid”-ness of current TV. It complains that while the overall quality of TV is very good, it’s also become somewhat formulaic. Who’s to blame? The algorithm, of course. The article’s writer James Poniewozik refers to the all-pervasive “if you liked that, you’d like this” echo chamber-like loop of media we consume and it reminded me of the Substacker Ted Gioia’s recent interview here. (It’s long, but worth it.)

In this conversation, he talks about how today’s writing doesn’t take enough risks. Like Poniewozik and his critique of streaming platforms, Gioia blames publishers for playing safe and giving audiences more of what they already like. Gioia’s take is that humans naturally strive to fit in – think survival of the fittest, Darwin-style. And so, while it’s natural for a writer (or TV company) to want what it produces to appeal to popular tastes, sometimes you just need to go off on a mad one and follow your crazy, irrational creative instincts.

This brings me to W. David Marx, who writes at length on his Substack about culture and status. His recent post, a “Manifesto Towards a New Cultural Criticism”, describes our universal need for degrees of complex novelty, in order to avoid boredom. According to his research, the commercial marketplace promotes the production of just-novel-enough artworks by financially incentivising those creators who can attract the largest audiences.

We might even say the same about fashion. Many of us (hello!) feel fatigued by the amount of dumbed down “mid” design masquerading as fashion and lament the lack of that which is personal, provocative (rather than reactive) and emotionally resonant. I’m thinking that Margiela Couture show and the likes of Craig Green, who just showed his brilliant SS25 menswear collection in London (below), following a 2-year runway hiatus. Critics described his study of father-son relations as ‘wild sincerity’, applauding him for following his own strict path that’s unlike any of his contemporaries. As he told Business of Fashion, “I think it’s important now more than ever to offer something new and different, which is kind of what British design is best at: pushing challenging ideas forward during difficult times.”
Craig Green SS25

Gioia too says all is not lost. He predicts an emerging ‘counterculture’ rising from the influx of platforms like Substack that give writers their own monetisable space for unfiltered idea sharing. Yes, we’ve been here before (WordPress, anybody?), but blogging 2.0 empowers writers with their own subscription revenue streams, effectively cutting out the middleman. Which may – potentially – be the catalyst needed to force trad publishers and editors to be more daring in who and what they choose to commission.

Back to Eric. The Sesame Street-esque show, “Good Day Sunshine” in the series goes through its own creative transition, taking a risk on the odd new puppet that its protagonist proposes. Does the risk pay off? You’ll have to watch to find out…

WORDS: Disneyrollergirl / Navaz Batliwalla
IMAGES: Eric/Netflix; Craig Green SS25
NOTE: Most images are digitally enhanced. Some posts use affiliate links and PR samples. Please read my privacy and cookies policy here

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Virginie Viard is leaving, so who’s next for Chanel?



Everyone’s got their hot take on who will replace Virginie Viard at Chanel.

While Chanel sales are up, speculation is that’s more down to price hikes and beauty purchases than Virginie’s designs (I can verify Chanel’s skincare is the best!).

The online criticism of Virginie’s collections can’t be good for brand image, even if the heritage is seemingly bulletproof.

Many people – understandably – hark to Karl Lagerfeld’s Chanel as the benchmark and look to a return to that golden era of wit and spectacle.

But I feel Chanel is looking for a reset. The recent mega-popular exhibitions cementing Gabrielle Chanel’s original ‘garconne’ ethos, showcasing her chic, pared back designs (and even influential beauty packaging) helped to restate the timeless pre-Karl vision of Chanel. The brand needs someone who understands the house codes, yet can inject youthful modernity to boost its heritage and thus appeal to a cross-generational audience.

My money’s on Hedi Slimane. He has history with the brand as a close friend of Karl, and he clearly knows the codes. He has an innate understanding of youth culture and can bring his network of arty tastemakers to the brand campaigns, while keeping the collections highly desirable.

When can we place our bets?

WORDS: Disneyrollergirl / Navaz Batliwalla
IMAGES: Celine AW24
NOTE: Most images are digitally enhanced. Some posts use affiliate links and PR samples. Please read my privacy and cookies policy here

CLICK HERE to get Disneyrollergirl blog posts straight to your inbox once a week
CLICK HERE to buy my book, The New Garconne: How to be a Modern Gentlewoman
CLICK HERE to buy my beauty book, Face Values: The New Beauty Rituals and Skincare