It has been reported that iconic fashion designer Karl Lagerfeld has died aged 85, with a report from French magazine Closer breaking the news.
The news of his death comes after weeks of ill health, with Karl – the artistic director of Chanel – missing his catwalk bow at the end of the most recent Chanel Couture Show in Paris.
‘Mr Lagerfeld, artistic director of Chanel, who was feeling tired, asked Virginie Viard, director of the creative studio of the house, to represent him,’ a statement announced following his absence.
It was then announced this morning that the designer – who presided over the House of Chanel for three decades – had died this morning in Paris.
While he is best known for his work with Chanel, becoming Creative Director in 1983, he is also just as celebrated for his work with Fendi, not to mention of course, his signature label.
It is undoubtedly a very sad day for the fashion community and high profile figures are coming out in force to pay their respects to the icon.
‘Karl, I cannot tell you how much you meant to me and how much I will miss you,’ Diane Kruger posted about the icon. ‘I will never forget your kindness towards me, your laughs, your imagination. I came to France to see you this week and introduce you to my daughter…I’m heartbroken I was too late Rest In Peace. I adore you.’
This weekend saw the Super Bowl LIII, with the New England Patriots coming out victorious over the Los Angeles Rams.
A lot of people however don’t tune in for the sport, but instead for the halftime music concert, with past performers including everyone from Beyonce and Lady Gaga to Coldplay and Katy Perry.
This year’s live act was Maroon 5, and despite the high hopes, their performance brought in a lot of online hate.
Yes, Adam Levine was mocked for his dad dancing and barely touching the guitar he had around him, but the real storm was caused by what he was wearing – or rather, what he wasn’t wearing.
The 39-year-old Maroon 5 singer took his shirt off during his performance, spending a lot of the concert topless, something that prompted viewers to call out as unfair.
Back in 2004, Janet Jackson and Justin Timberlake were the half time Super Bowl performance, with JT accidentally ripping Janet’s top mid-routine, revealing the singer’s breast and becoming the most famous wardrobe malfunction of all time.
Despite the fact that she was wearing a nipple shield, Janet was essentially ostracised due to ‘nipple-gate’ as it has become known, even having to make a public apology.
It’s hardly surprising therefore that viewers were angered when Adam Levine stripped off with ease on-stage to cheers, when Janet Jackson’s accident stunted her career.
‘So now that Adam Levine showed his nipples in the Halftime Show he owes a giant fee and his career is ruined, right?’, one angry fan posted, while another wrote: ‘How come Adam Levine gets to show his nipples and Janet doesn’t?’.
Fans called out the double standard as ‘casual sexism’, with one posting, ‘I’m sorry that Adam Levine’s career will now be ruined since he showed his nipples at the halftime show’.
‘We can be in it to win it but we should be supporting each other’
Second Act is hitting cinemas this week, undoubtedly set to become the feel-good film of the season.
The high fashion office wear and career inspiration make this a millennial must-see, but it’s the two strong female leads, coming in the form of Jennifer Lopez and Vanessa Hudgens, that make it a really important watch.
‘I think it’s great for women of all ages,’ Vanessa Hudgens told Marie Claire‘s Jenny Proudfoot. ‘I think that you’ll leave the film feeling inspired to reassess and go after what you really want and know that you aren’t a victim to your life. You are in control of it. And you decide how you live it.’
This is the film’s chief takeaway – a huge dose of career inspiration and an example of why women should support other women.
Jenny Proudfoot sat down with the lovely Vanessa Hudgens to talk all things Second Act, her surreal connection with J-Lo and why we should all surround ourselves with strong women on (and off) screen.
What was your first impression when you read the script?
I mean, my biggest thing reading the script at the beginning was, ‘Oh my gosh – Jennifer Lopez is going to crush this role and I want to watch her doing it.’ I grew up with her films. I remember watching The Wedding Planner over and over again and how charming she was and I was just so excited to see what she was going to do with this script because it’s so well-written and supportive of women.
Were you nervous meeting Jennifer Lopez?
I had met her once before in passing, and I was just really excited to have the opportunity to work with her in the room, and once we did our read together we connected in a way that was kind of crazy. Every now and then I feel like you meet people that you feel a soul connection to. It’s kind of weird and unexplainable but it’s a very real thing and you just feel it. That’s what happened with us. I remember calling my boyfriend afterwards and going, ‘Babe – even if I don’t get this part, I am so grateful for the experience that I just had because me and Jennifer connected on such a deep, real level that it just felt magical’. We read the big emotional scene. There were lots of tears between the two of us which I guess is what made it so special. It was emotional for me but it was also emotional for her. And afterwards she apparently said that she wanted me. I mean, only she can vouch for that but I feel like because our connection was so real, it just felt like it was right.
Do you hope this film will push women to boost each other up in business?
Yes. I think that it’s something that is really special and important. I feel that it’s such a sensitive time right now that women are really afraid of stepping on someone else’s toes, and it just goes to show with this – it’s ok as long as there is motive to support each other. We can be in it to win it but we should be supporting each other. I have always surrounded myself with strong women – I 100% think that who you are is a reflection of the people that you surround yourself with. It’s so important to be surrounded by people that challenge you and lift you up and are always there for you. I think it’s so important – that’s why my friendship group is so small!
What’s your top career advice?
I think people should lean into their interests. I feel as though we are at a point where it’s like “Work hard, go after what you want and be focused on that”. While that’s very true, it can give you tunnel vision and you lose sight of what brings you joy. It’s most important to lean into your interests – especially as an artist. I feel that there’s no right or wrong direction. Just follow your bliss and fully lean into it.
What career advice did Jennifer give you on-set?
Jennifer says herself that she loves being a mentor. She has been in this industry for so long and she knows the ropes – she has kind of done it all. So we would talk about trajectory and image and stuff like that. I mean, she was just super open with me and was down to talk about whatever.
What was your favourite scene that you filmed together?
It is really random. There was one scene when we were walking through Central Park together around the big classic Central Park fountain while we were filming in New York. It was a walk and talk scene and at one point it literally felt like someone had turned on a massive fan and put leaves in front of it. There were just leaves blowing all around us. But no, it was just Mother Nature doing her thing. And I remember looking up at Jennifer and looking around at Central Park and all these leaves blowing and it was just one of those real life movie moments, which is so funny because it turned into a real life movie moment.
Did playing VP Zoe inspire a career change of your own?
I’m an actor because I love stepping into other people’s shoes and then I feel that I get to bring a part of that person into my own personal life. And I think that there was something very empowering about playing this character, being the VP of the beauty department and having authority and power in an office space. Granted, that was fun but I would not be down for an office job. I don’t think I would survive. I like pretending, but not in real life.
What was your favourite Second Act look?
Zoe’s wardrobe was really nice. I love the winter layering – like the big winter coats with the thick scarves – I felt like they were such statements and so chic. I do like A/W fashion and I definitely enjoy seasons for short stints of time, but being a native Californian – I just want the sun the whole time. I mean, I’ve literally just been complaining about how I want it to be summer so that I can wear a dress.
What is your pre-audition prep?
I went to an acting class and they said before you do any audition you owe it to yourself to feel your body. By doing that you lie down and breathe, take account where you’re holding tension and pick a colour and put that colour in that place of tension. You breathe into it and therefore walk into the room feeling centred and grounded and completely present, giving yourself the best shot of getting the job.
While Zoe doesn’t have a British accent, how did you nail Lady Margaret’s voice in The Princess Switch?
I had a dialect coach that I worked with religiously. I obviously listened to a couple of the royals but at the end of the day it was all about thinking how I would be as a Duchess and practicing it. I was very self conscious about it and it would get to the point where I would have to do it all the time – in real life as well – so it would start to feel less foreign to me. There would definitely be days where I would go around all day with a British accent to everyone, even my mother.
Second Act comes to UK cinemas on Friday 25 January.
Valentine’s gifts for her – that’s right, we’ve dedicated an entire shopping gallery to pretty things we want for Valentine’s Day. Go on, check it out and start dropping hints…
Valentine’s Day is fast approaching, terrifying everyone across the globe looking to buy the perfect present.
Let’s face it – gift shopping is an absolute minefield. You just went through that stress at Christmas, using up all your best romantic ideas then, and now you have to do it all over again.
Not to mention, the selection of a Valentine’s present is more pressured than most – thanks to Nicholas Sparks the lucky lady in question will be comparing your romantic gesture to the ones made in every chick flick ever.
Unless you’re going to build her dream house like Noah in The Notebook, you’re really just playing for second.
So what are you going to do? Will you go down the sentimental gift route, or prioritise the price tag? Is it better to take a risk or to opt for something fail safe? Do you dare to guess your other half’s dress size (knowing that if you get it wrong you could be spending February 14th apologising)? Or should you go for something that can’t possibly backfire? Are you going to go OTT on the romance, or if it’s not reciprocated could that get a bit awkward?
Don’t panic – we’ve got you covered this year.
Whether she’s a girlfriend, wife or someone you’ve been admiring from afar, we’ve compiled our Valentine’s wish list – with truly something for everyone.
Whatever your budget, your relationship or her taste, you’re bound to find the perfect Valentine’s gifts for her here.
From posh candles and luxury scents to artwork and jewellery, from lingerie and designer shoes to pocket sized Polaroid cameras and Valentine’s Day jewellery – we’ve got it all here, and more.
So whether you’re shopping for your other half or doing some research to drop a few hints for you, here is the ultimate Valentine’s gift guide.
When it comes to investing in a new season designer handbag, we don’t take much convincing. However, it’s always good to do your research first and know which bag trends are going to be huge for the new season – which is where the buys at high-end stores come in.
Harvey Nichols has just released its accessories trend forecast for SS19, and there’s basically only four styles you need in your life right now.
This time last year, logo guys were everywhere, thanks in no small part to the rise of Balenciaga and Gucci. For SS19, nothing has changed, though this time around we are looking at a sleeker, monochromatic take on the trend. Our top buy, the Chloé Roy cream leather bucket bag.
Meghan Markle and Kate Middleton are both fans of them: the top handle bags, which add that ladylike touch to any outfit. Harvey Nichs calls it the ‘smart sidekick destined for the office’ and we agree. Try the Loewe Gate leather tote bag for a go-with-everything classic.
If top handle bags really aren’t your thing, then the shoulder bag is for you. Think a go-to cult bag in the making, usually a little bigger to easily hold everything you need in one place. We’re into the Gucci GG Marmont black leather shoulder bag.
Finally, tonal dressing sees no sign of abating for spring, and head-to-toe cream is the way to do it. With a little help from the Shrimps Antonia pearl bag, because that influencer-favourite really isn’t going anywhere either.
The blatant violation, involving filming up someone’s clothing without their permission, will now be punishable by up to two years in prison. But my God, has it taken a long time.
The criminalisation of the offence is a done deal – having finally been approved in the House of Lords and now just awaiting the formality of Royal Assent. The issue is that the campaign was started in 2017.
My question – why has it taken so long to be made illegal?
Surely something as intrusive as filming up someone’s clothing in a public space without their permission deserves to be made a crime, right? Not to some it seems, and if it wasn’t for the determination of Gina Martin, it would have fallen at the first hurdle.
Gina introduced us to the term, Upskirting, after starting a viral online campaign to get it criminalised. She had discovered that it wasn’t a specific offence in UK law after being victim to it herself at a festival and being unable to progress her claims, with police telling her there was nothing they could do. She later petitioned to reopen her claim, and then went ever further, lobbying to change the law.
Gina’s aim? To have upskirting recognised in the Sexual Offences Act 2003 and to thereby make it punishable by law.
Gina Martin. Credit: REX
But while it garnered a lot of celebrity support and was brought to parliament by Liberal Democrat MP Wera Hobhouse, its progress was halted by Conservative MP Christopher Chope in June 2018 who did his very best to disrupt the policy’s development – the proposal’s sole objector.
This week however the House of Lords chose to back the bill, and when the criminalisation was confirmed, Gina exclaimed that she was ‘over the moon’.
‘After becoming a victim and recognising a gap in the law, I partnered with Ryan Whelan of Gibson Dunn and began 18 months of exhaustive, emotional and life-changing work,’ she announced. ‘Now? We have changed the law! I always thought politics was impenetrable but with the right help and willpower you can do it. We did it. We made upskirting a sexual offence! I am exhausted and so so happy!’
So now England and Wales are joining the many countries that already have laws on upskirting, with serious offenders even to be named on the sex offenders register.
This is huge progress, but I’m still angry.
Upskirting being made illegal is obviously an incredible thing. I just think it’s a shame that it has taken so long to criminalise something that is so obviously not OK.
Scotland has had laws against upskirting for almost a decade, so why were we behind the curb?
Let’s make sure the next unspecified offence doesn’t take as long to criminalise. We need to do better, and if we we see something that isn’t right, we need to be a Gina Martin and make change.
Men’s grooming brand Gillette released a video today, in minutes becoming the most divisive razor advert of all time.
Tuning in on my commute this morning, I braced myself for the usual visuals – slow motion shots of stubble followed by sexualised size 0 women dancing around clean-shaven male customers. To their credit, Gillette proved me wrong.
The short video didn’t even mention razors, or grooming for that matter. Instead, it focused its attention on toxic masculinity, asking men to do and be better, and changing its famous slogan from ‘the best a man can get’ to ‘the best men can be’.
Yes, this is not a drill. The world’s leading men’s grooming brand has gone woke and is trying to redefine what it means to be a man, dispelling outdated stereotypes and prompting us all to have important conversations on harassment and bullying – conversations that we should have had a long time ago.
‘Is this the best a man can get?,’ the advert begins, a play on their own outdated advertising. ‘Is it?
‘We can’t hide from it, it’s been going on far too long. We can’t laugh it off, making the same old excuses,’ a voiceover reads alongside news footage of the #MeToo movement and scenes of harassment. ‘But something finally changed and there will be no going back.
‘Because we believe in the best in men to say the right thing, to act the right way. Some already are, in ways big and small. But some is not enough, because the boys watching today will be the men of tomorrow.’
I sat back from this advert in awe, before hitting replay. A male-based brand calling on its customers to challenge societal pressures, and most importantly, challenge other men on everyday behaviours of toxic masculinity. Thank the lord.
Then I saw the responses. ‘Man hating’, ‘radicalised feminism‘ and ‘repulsive’ were just some of the terms used, with Piers Morgan even accusing Gillette of encouraging men to ‘cut off their testicles with their razors’.
Well if we wanted an example of toxic masculinity, there it is – bullying people and subordinating women, suggesting that by standing up for them you are castrating yourself.
It is not acceptable to defend toxic behaviour with this ’Boys will be boys’ mentality. Being a man shouldn’t mean abusing your power and men should be stepping up and standing up to everyone from their colleagues and family members to strangers on the street when behaviour is unacceptable.
It is of course unsurprising that there has been backlash. Progress is rarely made without people fighting against it, and a lot of viewers have sworn off Gillette razors ‘for life’ for their supposed ‘man-hating message.’
To these people I say, you’re not listening to what the advert is telling you.
This advert is not hating on men. It is hating on the deeply engrained societal pressures of what it is to be a man. This advert is rooting for men. It is saying that as a society we need to change and it is challenging men to change their behaviours and challenge those around them.
If we want to achieve gender equality, this is how. We have to challenge everyday behaviours in order to overturn the whole system.
Toxic masculinity is a thing. That’s a fact. I know this because I experience it every day, as does every woman around me. So to the people arguing that toxic masculinity is nothing but a millennial buzz word invented by radical feminists, you have already lost your credibility.
Of course the Piers Morgans of the world have taken offence. It is because of toxic masculinity that those same people came to power in the first place.
Watch the video again. Look for the message.
We need to stop using our gender to excuse behaviours. We need to stop the abuse of power. If you see harassment, challenge it. But most importantly we all need to work together to make this change.
The theme of the night however was undoubtedly sisterhood, from Claire Foy and Viola Davis leaving the stage hand-in-hand to Sandra Oh having a public love-in with the Crazy Rich Asians cast.
But it was the shared wins that really got us pumped up, with Glenn Close and Lady Gaga splitting the Best Actress gong, and Amy Adams and Patricia Arquette sharing the win for Best Actress in a limited series.
Showing what women supporting women looks like, the actresses excitedly hugged each other and gracefully gave each other their time on stage.
‘I’m so thrilled it’s a tie, I can’t tell you!’ Glenn explained of their joint win, with the accolade meaning more due to the fact that Close is actually an old friend of Lady Gaga’s mother.
‘Glenn, get over here!’ Lady Gaga shouted, as the 71-year-old stepped back to give Gaga her time on stage.
Bigging up her joint-winner, Gaga explained: ‘Glenn has a foundation in support of kindness, and this is something that is so very important to me and my mother with the Born This Way Foundation. We want to empower youth to inspire a kinder and braver world.’
Being the unbeatable double act that is Lady Gaga and Glenn Close, the sweet photos of their joint-win and celebrations later that night have gone viral.