Max Studio Blog

Couture 2014

1/31/2014 6:10:00 AM






Couture 2014

When it comes to Rome its fashion and its historical monuments are increasingly intertwined. Diego Della Valle and Tods are restoring the Colisseum. Fendi is funding the restoration of the Trevi Fountain. So no surprise then that this week Rome’s couture season, Alta Moda, seemed to revolve around some of the Eternal City’s most ancient monuments. There were retrospectives at the beautiful La Pinacoteca del Tesoriere palace, a fashion performance in ruins below the Piazza Navona and Bulgari staged its event in the Tempio di Adriano, a monument of Ancient Rome that is a mere 2000 years old.

If Rome was all about the old, then the Paris couture shows which came before it were all about the new. Versace gave glittering sheaths with hoods for Lady Gaga, its star guest, and for dark and beautiful party girls from Brazil to Saudi Arabia. Chanel and Dior meanwhile gave its princesses and First Ladies sneakers that they could rep with Karl’s boleros and Raf’s slashed lattice-work.

But the big story of the week was the couture celebrity turnover. Day 1 couture piece seen on Paris catwalk. Day 2 couture piece seen on Rita Ora, Rihanna or Beyonce at the Grammy’s in Los Angeles. Now that’s very 2k14.

Contributing Editor: Richard Dennen

'Dahling'

1/27/2014 6:06:00 AM




'Dahling'

Gorgeous Sophie Dahl, that voluptuous bombshell who cut a glamorous swathe through the heroine chic waifs of the ’90s and early Noughties was the bespectacled MaxStudio campaign star for the Autumn/Winter 2007/8 season, photographed in London by Michelangelo di Battista. The granddaughter of ‘The BFG’ author Roald Dahl she was discovered weeping on a street corner in 1997 by the late, great Tatler Fashion Director Isabella Blow, then a fashion editor at Vogue, who catapulted her to catwalk fame and glory and in front of the lens’ of Richard Avedon, David Bailey, Peter Lindbergh, Bruce Weber, Steven Klein and Steven Meisel and into the campaigns of Pringle, Alexander McQueen and Versace. She is now married to the singer Jamie Cullum.

Contributing Editor Richard Dennen



Spotted: The Leon Max Doubleweave Coat

Two of Hollywood’s coolest fashionistas have picked your perfect winter coat; this chic, minimal, camel-colored soft double-weave wool piece with a menswear-inspired collar from Leon Max. This is the kind of coat that can lift and smarten an everyday school run-outfit whether perfectly balanced with casual flats or smartened up with thigh-grazing boots to give it some edge. Dress-down afternoon casual in a warm and chic turtleneck while styled with a plaid or crisp boyfriend shirt gives things a more modern and trendy twist, the perfect hip look as winter morphs into spring. Camel maybe the Hollywood pick but the Leon Max black coat is a firm contender in the style stakes too.

Recreate the look

Doubleweave Wool Coat Stretch Cotton Shirt Ponte Legging Pony Flats
Silk Cashmere Turtleneck Stretch Trousers Flat Boots

Contributing Editor: Richard Dennen

Going For Gold

1/14/2014 8:23:00 AM


Going For Gold

Award Season in Hollywood is now well and truly underway and four clear fashion front-runners emerged on the red carpet at the Golden Globes; Cate Blanchett looked regal in the Gothic glamour of lace Armani, an old-school silver screen swan. Margot Robbie the new beauty who plays Leonardo DiCaprio’s wife in ‘The Wolf of Wall Street’ went for white sexy Gucci with an embellished trim and green shoe and just the right side of safe when it came to showing leg, a triumph of a Hollywood debut. Downton Abbey’s Lady Mary - Michelle Dockery - was dreamy in grey, strapless Oscar de la Renta with an embroidered trim (Carson the Butler would no doubt have approved) meanwhile Jennifer Lawrence unsurprisingly went for Dior, this time a gown of the palest pink chiffon. 

With the Screen Actors Guild Awards, Grammy’s and BAFTAS still to go it’s set to be another corker of a red carpet season. The question, though, poolside round at the Chateau Marmont is whether anyone will ever again top the 2012 Oscar glory fashion moment of Angelina Jolie’s leg appearing from beneath her black velvet Atelier Versace gown during the arrivals at Hollywood’s Dolby Theatre. That was the year that a leg spawned its’ own twitter feed with 15,000 followers.

This season the films which have been getting early momentum include ‘12 Years a Slave’ and ‘Gravity’. Over at Leon Max there’s particular excitement about ‘Rush’ which received BAFTA nominations including Outstanding British Film and Best Supporting Actor for Daniel Bruhl who played Niki Lauda to Chris Hemsworth’s James Hunt in the Formula 1 flick. Parts of the movie were filmed at the Leon Max HQ, Easton Neston; in the ’70s the stable block was the base for Hunt’s original team, Hesketh Racing.

On your marks!

Contributing Editor: Richard Dennen

My New Year’s Eve Look

1/8/2014 8:30:00 AM


My New Year’s Eve Look

by Martha Freud

"A good coat is the most important item in your winter wardrobe” – quite grandmotherly advice but that doesn’t mean it isn’t true! And with the New Year it was time for me to take a new look at my wardrobe. Not only because it was cold out there but with a night of party-hopping there was barely enough time to kiss beneath the mistletoe or take my coat off before it was time to move onto the next event. So a bold, fitted and unforgettable layer from Leon Max is what I went for.

My fail-safe party dress look is the classic little black dress; the perfect backdrop to some shimmering accessories. A particular favorite this year was the Leon Max keyhole neckline dress, the cape detail at the back cut with the softest silk chiffon gave it an ethereal look. And just as important was the pair of sparkly stilettos. They should be high and they should out-shine any Christmas tree still standing! And they have a practical side too, if it snows, the heel can hook into the ice to help you keep your grip.

Jacquard A-Line Coat

Silk Chiffon Keyhole Neckline Dress

Doubleweave Wool Cape

Sundance 2013

1/30/2013 10:06:00 AM


Sundance 2013

At Sundance this year the emphasis seems to have been on sexy women and their stories: in ‘Two Mothers’ Naomi Watts and Robin Wright play two friends who struggle to navigate through life despite their naughty behavior. Other beautiful stars include Nicole Kidman who lead a stellar cast in the Gothic fairytale, ‘Stoker’ and Amanda Seyfried in ‘Lovelace’. Felicity Jones, plays a foreign exchange student causing chaos in her adopted family in ‘Breathe In’. ‘Fruitvale,’ made by 26 year-old Ryan Coogler won the Grand Jury prize and was promptly snapped up by Weinstein but the big news was the $10 million - a festival record - handed over by Fox for Toni Collette’s coming-of-age ‘The Way, Way Back.’ After all the screenings, all came in from the cold to gather at the Blue Door Lounge for serious A-list socializing. 

Contributing Editor: Richard Dennen

Photo Credit: Getty Images



Fashion Inspiration: Downton Abbey

Easton Neston, designer Leon Max’s 18th century stately home in the countryside of England, is the real-life answer to Downton Abbey. And the Easton Neston collection is the fashion line inspired by this aristocratic world. If Lady Mary was shopping for a 21st century chic country weekend, this is what she would look to: a modern take on heritage,  all colours like the moss greens and browns are made from traditional English materials like tweed, chunky wool yarns and leather. Designed in the studio from Easton Neston’s Wren Wing, it’s a collection that has an influence on a cultivated feminine style, taking in the influences of the surrounding world of historical England. Key pieces include a quilted jacket that comes in traditional English country colours, soft & cozy sweaters, stretch corduroy trousers- all that  keep things cool at the same time. A sexy take on the tweed suit is the well-cut jacket paired with thigh-brushing shorts. Just the thing to get Matthew Crawley’s heart racing. 

Shop the Easton Neston Collection

Contributing Editor: Richard Dennen

 



Elle’s Women in Television Dinner 

The feelings of mutual respect and praise that cloaked last night at Elle’s Women in Television dinner was as stunningly beautiful as it’s almost all female attendees. 

Elle’s 2nd annual dinner celebrating the women who embody the female characters that we follow faithfully on the small screen each week was an event that not only broke a certain kind stereotype of competitiveness in Los Angeles, but also solidified a sense of sisterhood amongst the women of Hollywood. 

Nene Leakes dazzled in a navy blue off the shoulder number and matching her cuff to her shoes and Nicole Richie sported a new short hair cut paired with a white Alaia dress and towering stilettos. 

Elle Editor-in-Chief Robbie Myers set the tone for the night, which was presented by Hearts On Fire Diamonds and Wella Professionals, by presenting a quick montage of some of the strongest female leads in television today, including “Scandal” which stars Kerry Washington, the first network drama to have a female lead since 1974. 

As we dined on short ribs and sea bass, the elegant pink flowers in front of us donned sparkling Hearts on Fire Diamond earrings and broaches, second only in brilliance to my dinner partners, Willa Holland from “Arrow” and Christa B. Allen from “Revenge”.  Both 21 year old starlets held the table captivated with witty stories of filming and back stage antics.

The pant suit also made an appearance, most notably on “Revenge” star, Margarita Levieva who wore L’angence high wasted trousers with suspenders and straight shiny locks instead of her usual curls. 

Others in attendance and talking baby shop was the bump-baring Busy Philipps and the lovely former sports illustrated model and actress Molly Sims who confided that she found it hard to lose the baby weight after her child was born 7 months ago, giving hope to all new mothers around the world! 

The night ended with a slow trickle of party goers heading upstairs to the West Hollywood Soho House and continuing on with drinks at the bar. 

The US Edition of  ELLE Women in Television is available now. 

Contributing Editor: Margo Stilley

Image Credit: Getty Images 

Stanley Kubrick Exhibit

1/22/2013 10:46:00 AM


Stanley Kubrick Exhibit

Even though Kubrick’s work which is almost synonymous with British Film, a filmography that includes 3 shorts and 16 features predominantly shot in the UK, The Stanley Kubrick Exhibition has traveled all over the world from Europe to Australia and has finally alighted here in Los Angeles to the delight of what rightly so, feels like and entire city filled with cinephiles. 

As you walk through the entrance doors into the first room in this expansive exhibition, the mood is set with a short film that highlights clips from a number of Kubrick’s features with quotes from the director superimposed across some of the most iconic images and scenes from the 20th century.  At times you feel entertained and maybe a little nostalgic, remembering where you first were when you saw those images, but mostly one gets an eery feeling that as they are about to leave the safety of that darkened room, all of the horrors and strangeness of the stories he has told were waiting for you just on the other side.

While that feeling is almost inescapable when considering the body of work that Kubrick has created, once outside of that first screening room the deconstruction of a man’s private obsessions comes to light under the spot lights of the LACMA.  Twisting through what seems like a never ending maze of pictures and models and costumes and annotated scripts, one of the most stand out pieces of the show is the type writer used by Jack Nicholson in “The Shining” with the original papers typed in uneven lettering, still eery even so far removed from The ­­­­Overlook Hotel and under the bright lights of an exhibition hall.  Accompanying it just across the way, are the two little blue and white dresses of the same film’s most dreaded stars, the undead twins.  Rather desperately needing breath of fresh air and moving on, true to the contrasting subject matters of Kubrick’s work, the next room contained two bright white statures from the Korova Milk Bar in “A Clockwork Orange”, one of my favorite films, both in the same explicit positions for over 40 years, unmoved by time or continent or reality. 

As an actor, my favorite parts of the exhibition were the occasional screens showing behind the scenes shots of Kubrick talking to his actors.  Muffled by the many sounds of other screenings and the scuffling of feet, you can only see the faces of the actors, still in costume and on set watching themselves on screen, deep in thought, eyebrows knit in concentration with Kubrick perched to one side like a shoulder angel waiting for his moment to whisper… and when that moment comes, the faces of the actors changes and open in a moment of enlightenment that steers them into the direction of genius.

And genius is exactly what you’ll feel you’ve experienced as you exit the show a little while after that.  A man who’s career has influenced and inspired directors from Spielberg to Scorsese, Woody Allen to Ridley Scott now feels personally closer- The great feat of any retrospective show, accomplished.  

Contributing Editor: Margo Stilley

Image Credit: http://stateofunique.com/



Leon Max Spring/Summer 2013 Campaign

A first look at the Leon Max Spring/Summer 2013 Campaign shot by photographer Phillip Dixon in Mustique starring Katia Elizarova and Victoria Zuban.

Golden Globes 2013

1/16/2013 8:41:00 AM


Golden Globes 2013

Adele high-fived Daniel Craig - aka 007 - en route to the Golden Globes podium to accept her award for best original song. To say she was excited is an understatement, blushing in Burberry she squealed with glee when she was handed her award. And she deserved it. As usual with these affairs it’s the red carpet looks that are as pawed over as the film awards. Ben Affleck, Daniel Day-Lewis and Damian Lewis all looked fresh-to-death sharp in their tux’s. But in the female fashion minefield the A-list took no prisoners. Kate Hudson and Downton Abbey star Michelle Dockery embraced the beauty of the gold appliqué. Rosie Huntington-Whiteley shone in Saint Laurent and led a classic black parade that included Nicole Kidman in Alexander McQueen and Rachel Weisz in Louis Vuitton. Anne Hathaway meanwhile was serene in white Chanel, Jennifer Lopez ageless in a curve hugging nude and lace look, and stealing the show with a splash of red was golden globe winner Jennifer Lawrence. What does your colour say about you?

Contributing Editor: Richard Dennen

Photo Credit: Getty Images

INSPIRED BY ART

1/8/2013 3:50:00 AM


INSPIRED BY ART

It’s time to go back to black. And to white. And a bit of gray maybe. While color is indeed in this season there’s always another way - take a leaf out of Picasso’s book and be inspired by the Guggenheim show, the first exhibition to focus on his black and white palette. Is it time to put his artistic sensibility into your wardrobe? Picasso claimed that color weakens, so he purged it from his work. While this winter’s tale isn’t over channel the minimalist palette and his obsessive line and form and apply it to your fashion life. Monochrome us up, baby.

Contributing Editor: Richard Dennen

2013 Style Resolutions

1/3/2013 4:18:00 AM


2013 Style Resolutions

 

Enhance your style in the new year by embracing these fashion forward trends that will keep your wardrobe fresh, chic and modern.

Sheer is a trend that inspires all of the fashion go getters. Fashion editors Jade Frampton of Elle and Marissa Rubin of People Stylewatch both list this as a  favorite trend for the new year. The simple sexiness of showing a bit of skin can be embraced in blouses, dresses and skirts.   

Metallics, also one of Elle editor Jade Frampton’s picks for 2013, are on the up and up. A pair of gold cocktail shorts or trousers adds a bit of sparkle to a modern night on the town look.

Paillettes are another great way to make an understated look stand out. They add a classic shine, particularly when used on an LBD or black cardigan.  

Fashion editor at Interview Magazine, Jessica Mycock feels a wide leg trouser is a must-have for every woman’s wardrobe. Ideal for cocktail and the office, changing up the shape of your pant provides a much needed sense of variety.

The cape is the rising star of outerwear. Loved by celebrities and editors alike, a good cape can be used as a cover up for a night on the town or as a statement piece for casual dressing during winter months. 

Shop Now

Film Love in a Cold Climate

1/27/2012 12:18:00 PM


Film Love in a Cold Climate

Kate Bosworth, Kirsten Dunst and Emma Roberts all froze in the name of fashion at the Sundance Film Festival’s Opening Weekend.

Park City, Utah was the place to be seen last weekend as the Hollywood glitterati rolled in for the Sundance Film Festival. Marina Abramovic, a famous performance artist, doesn’t shy away from performing for this crowd and also has a documentary to promote titled Marina Abramovic: The Artist is Present. Another noteable actress attending the festival and the screening of Julia Verdin’s new film, The Middle of Nowhere, is Emayatzy Corinealdi. This year Sundance turned out to be one low-key, recession-friendly, cozy film festival with not a single sighting of Atelier Versace or anything approaching the bling of a Golden Globes red carpet. This was about enjoying loads of snow and going for fun cocktails after the film premieres, not round to Elton John’s. James Marsden and Joshua Jackson bromanced each other at the afterparty for Celeste and Jesse Forever on Friday night at the Park City Museum. Rashida Jones, who wrote it, was joined by a gang including Quincy Jones and Emma Roberts. And because fabulous venues in Park City are not two-a-penny it wasn’t many hours later that Emily Blunt arrived for a fresh cocktail party to celebrate her film Your Sister’s Sister. Meanwhile Lizzy Caplan and Kirsten Dunst got down to business at the after party for their film, Bachelorette – now, that sounds like something fun worth waiting for – but it was down to Kate Bosworth to up the glamour stakes the next night for the premiere of Black Rock, though it was out of her chic crimson sheath and into sweaters for the follow-up dinner. Because for that Utah weather even the A-list need a more practical form of defense. 

Contributing Editor: Richard Dennen

Photo Credit:

George Pimentel/Getty Images Entertainment

Sonia Recchia/Getty Images Entertainment

Jemal Countess/Getty Images Entertainment



Katia Elizarova Shares the Spotlight in Spring Campaign

What do you get when you introduce an aspirational model and a resplendent horse and pose them together on the white sands of Zuma beach in Malibu? A bit of magic, and the MaxStudio Spring/Summer campaign. But don’t make the mistake of thinking that Katia Elizarova is the star of this show; her co-star is a Hollywood horse and the star of The Chronicles of Narnia and Water for Elephants. “It can be tricky sometimes” to work with animals, chuckles Katia fresh from the campaign shoot, “but this beats the time I had to kiss a goose for a British cover-shoot or when I had to eat the same cookie as a pug when I fronted a Japanese campaign.” For her it’s the clothes that are key: “I can tell you there is one special dress that loves me as much as I love it. I wore it when we filmed the video for the spring collection and again in the ad campaign.” She’s talking about the pale grey dress, seen in this campaign being blown by the Californian wind. “It moves fluidly when worn, making me feel truly like an angel and a spectre all at once,” the model muses. And it doesn’t get much better than that. Will she be staying in touch with her campaign partner? “He was the star,” she sighs, “We nailed those shots with our dance moves on the beach.” And it takes two to tango.

Contributing Editor: Richard Dennen

The Golden Globes

1/19/2012 4:40:00 AM


The Golden Globes

Le tout Hollywood hit the red carpet!

Speaking fashion: Tilda Swinton, an actress known for taking fashion risks, pulls off runway-ready powder blue with ease. Blue is in, agreed Michelle Williams in Jason Wu and Freida Pinto in prom-like Prada. Angelina Jolie worked uncluttered and contemporary Versace, while Kate Winslet kissed her boyfriend (Richard Branson’s nephew Ned RocknRoll) as she won her best actress award for Mildred Pierce. Clearly thrilled, she accepted her statue with schoolgirl excitement. It turns out that the Hollywood Foreign Press Association love Britain this year, giving gongs for Downton Abbey, My Week with Marilyn and The Iron Lady with Meryl Streep who thanked the English for letting her “trample all over their history.” Because as every iron lady knows it’s a fashion battlefield out there – and to the victor the spoils.

Contributing Editor: Richard Dennen

Photo Credit:

Steve Granitz/WireImage/Getty Images Entertainment

Frazer Harrison/Getty Images Entertainment



2012 is a Vintage Year for Fashion Inspiration in Film

Madonna’s new movie, W.E. premiered in London last night and if it got anything right, it was the clothes. Her portrayal of the Duchess of Windsor came along with an interesting history. “I’m not a beautiful woman,” the Duchess of Windsor once admitted, “I’m nothing to look at, so the only thing I can do is dress better than anyone else.” Clothes are central to the myth surrounding ‘That Woman,’ Wallis, a twice-married Baltimore-born social climber for whom an English king gave up his crown. From the moment she arrived in court circles she shocked; for her first party at Buckingham Palace she wore a bright, slinky, diaphanous gown. She was ice-cool and cutting edge before anyone even knew what that meant. Wallis’ clothes were couture and are now spread between the Met in New York, the Musee de la Mode in Paris and London’s V & A - so what did Madonna do? Well, had some more made of course by Dior, Galliano et al. Vionnet reproduced dresses including the sparkling, silvery dress Wallis wears for the Benzedrine-fuelled cocktail party scene. But this is not just a case of historical costume drama, Wallis lives on as her wardrobe continues to influence today; check the distinct reference to her 1937 Mainbocher wedding dress in Stella McCartney’s design for Nancy Shevell’s wedding to the Sir Paul McCartney last year.

But it’s later this year that the fashion stakes on the silver screen hit high - if Wallis Simpson is the epitomy of ’30s and ’40s haute societe fashion then Daisy Buchanan is the embodiment of Jazz Age chic - and arriving in style later in the year (when we’ve exhausted what we can get from the Windsor look) with The Great Gatsby. Carey Mulligan, who plays Daisy in the Baz Luhrmann production, is already tapped to co-host the Costume Institute ball for the ‘Elsa Schiaparelli and Miuccia Prada: On Fashion’ exhibition. Well, there’s nothing fashion loves more than a literary style icon and it doesn’t get much better than this. The collections are already awash with opportunities to channel one of Gatsby’s Long Island dances of 1922 and the filming hasn’t even wrapped - Lanvin and Gucci are not the only places to look for Art Deco drop-waist dresses. Madonna is going to have to share the stage this year of film inspired by fashion! 

Contributing Editor: Richard Dennen 



All Rise for the New Central Saint Martins Fashion Fund

Leon Max joins Lanvin, Versace and Alexander McQueen as founder donors at the avant-garde London fashion school

“Central Saint Martins is an amazing incubator of design talent that consistently punches above its weight,” pointed out Leon Max when it was announced he had agreed to be a founder donor of the erstwhile fashion school.

There was certainly a lot of hype when Central Saint Martins ditched the old, chaotic but much-loved Charing Cross building for it’s glossy, new, glass and steel build in King’s Cross last year. This had been the building where Gilbert had met George, where the Sex Pistols debuted in ‘75, where Pulp’s Jarvis Cocker met the girl with “a thirst for knowledge” in his song, ‘Common People,’ and these were the red hot caverns of far-out creativity in the ’80s.

The move caused tears across the world of British design talent and beyond; graduates include Giles Deacon, Stella McCartney, Riccardo Tisci, John Galliano, Alexander McQueen, Sarah Burton and virtually everyone showing at London Fashion Week.

As shock subsided the avant-garde embraced the change, because who wouldn’t like a new lecture theatre sponsored by LVMH? And what’s not to like about their new Fashion Fund which has raised half a million to support the fashion courses? The founder donors are a mix of the who’s who of fashion and include Alexander McQueen, Chloe, Gucci, Lanvin, Leon Max and Versace.

“This move will strengthen their ability to develop young, creative designers who will be the standard bearers in the decades to come,” added Leon Max, “at Max Studio we’re delighted to help support this great institution.”

Contributing Editor: Richard Dennen

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