Fashion Week

Jason Wu Calls Michelle Obama’s Choice of His Dress "Thrilling, Emotional and Inspiring"

Jason Wu hit the fashion lottery tonight. In December, the 26-year old Tawainese-American designer submitted three dresses to Michelle Obama for consideration, but considered himself a long-shot. Wu had no idea that Michelle Obama had chosen his one-shouldered, embellished, off-white gown until the President and First Lady took the stage at the Neighborhood Ball. “I found out tonight…along with the rest of the world,” Wu told CNN.

“It’s thrilling, it’s emotional and it’s inspiring. For a young designer, I couldn’t ask for anything more than this. It’s my dream come true.”

Wu said he created the dress to reflect the first couple and the new administration. He wanted to give Michelle a gown with a “dream-like quality.”

On inauguration night, Wu won’t be celebrating his newfound celebrity. He doesn’t have time. With New York Fashion Week only three weeks away, he will be burning the midnight oil – working on his Fall 2009 collection.

When asked his thoughts about Michelle Obama’s status as an emerging style icon, Wu said, “She’s versatile. She can do it all. She is amazing. She has her own sense of style and there’s nothing better than that.”

Thoughts on Michelle Obama’s gown?

Take A Brow, Michelle Obama: Your Softer Arches Are Just The Change You Needed

If you’re like me, you can’t get enough of Michelle Obama. Her fashion and beauty choices keep me entertained, on my toes, and taking copious notes.

Last Fall, while at New York Fashion Week, I got to talking with the Bobbi Brown. Bobbi was sporting an Obama ’08 pin, so we started chatting about Michelle’s makeup and favorite Bobbi Brown products. Towards the end of the conversation, I asked Bobbi her opinion of Michelle’s eyebrows; I told Bobbi that, though Michelle can do no wrong in my eyes, her arches could use some softening. Bobbi smiled and nodded, adding that if she was Michelle’s makeup artist, she would give Michelle a less angular arch.

Around the same time, Michelle Obama’s actual makeup artist, Chicago-based makeup artist Ingrid Grimes-Myles, was getting the same criticism about Michelle’s brows.

“When she started getting that feedback—I have a rule: When three or more people give you feedback, that means hundreds are talking about it—then what I began to do is bring them down and train them down,” Grimes-Myles said.

If you take a close look at Michelle’s current brows and compare them the ones she sported at the Democratic National Convention, you’ll notice that the arch is less exaggerated.

The Chicago Tribune has a great article about Michelle’s brow evolution, which includes some tasty beauty tidbits (Michelle loves MAC lip pencils and gloss).

Barbie Loves Stila: Barbie Gets All Dolled Up for Her 50th Anniversary

Timed to its 50th Anniversary – and a year-long celebration of events and partners – Barbie announces Stila as the Official Prestige Makeup Partner for 2009. Stila will be celebrating all things Barbie, bringing the doll’s signature beauty looks to life with innovative and whimsical products that are signature Stila. A limited edition spring collection of beauty cans and a talking palette will precede a larger collection and Barbie beauty program slated for Fall 2009.

“As much as Barbie is known for her place in fashion, she is also famous for her beauty, and we are thrilled to bring the Barbie beauty experience to girls of all ages with Stila as our partner. Like Barbie, it’s a brand loved by both the girly girl and the sophisticated fashionista,” said Richard Dickson, General Manager and Senior Vice President, Barbie.

This month, the collaboration kicks off with limited edition Barbie Loves Stila offerings that will launch just in time for Barbie’s anniversary celebrations. The inaugural collection features four colorful “Decades of Beauty Cans” filled with Stila favorites that will help Barbie girls recreate Barbie beauty looks that are iconic of the past five decades. Each unique palette has two eye shadows and a cheek color or bronzer, as well as a lip product, and a mascara or liner. A booklet inside describes the beauty and fashion wardrobes for each doll.

Decades of Beauty Cans include:

• #1 Ponytail Doll (1959) – Lip Color named Ponytail (red), Liquid Eye Liner, a 3-pan paper-wrapped compact with 2 eye shadows and a cheek color, and a Look Book.

• Malibu Doll (1971) – Lip Glaze named Malibu (pale pink), Lash Visor Mascara in Black, a 3-pan paper-wrapped compact with 2 eye shadows and a bronzer, and a Look Book.

• Foxy Doll (1980) – Lip Glaze named Foxy, Lash Visor Mascara, a paper-wrapped compact with 2 eye shadows and a cheek color, and a Look Book.

• Jewel Doll (2000) – Lip Glaze named Jewel (bright pink), Multi-Effect Mascara, 2-pan paper-wrapped compact with 2 eye shadows and a cheek color, and a Look Book.

The four Barbie Loves Stila beauty cans will pre-launch on on Wednesday, January 14. Each beauty can is numbered and Stila will not be producing more than 10,000 of any one can. Since these are collector’s items, these babies are gonna fly off virtual shelves. So mark your calendar and set your alarm.

Additionally, Stila will launch a new version of its talking palette – with the tips and the tools to get the Barbie look. A Stila Pro-Artist will help aspiring Barbie beauties achieve an iconic look, with the press of a button. This palette will be available exclusively at Sephora and

Finally, Stila will help celebrate Barbie’s first-ever runway show, held at Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week in February, as the show’s backstage beauty makeup sponsor!

Yes We Afri-Can: Lela Rose, Spring 2009

For Spring 2009, Lela Rose takes us on safari.

Backstage, I had the opportunity to chat with my mane man, Ted Gibson, about the inspiration for the collection and the hair.

“Lela found this book and it had portraits of African women and these really incredible outfits and hairdos. So we took the same idea and she adopted them into the clothes and I adopted them into the hair,” he said. “And what I’m doing is a modern interpretation of what these looks were. So I’m doing braids and roughing up the braids. It’s a cornrow in the front. It’s African inspired, but I think what’s great about it is that any woman can really wear it.”

Ted used Tame It – a professional, shine-boosting styling lotion – to control flyaways and frizzies. Hairsheet Styling Sheets added polish and shine, and Beautiful Hold Hairspray secured the style in place. makeup artist Tina Turnbow used Stila products to transform each model into “a very adventurous, outdoorsy woman on safari.” To create the perfect canvas, Tina applied Natural Finish Oil Free Makeup and Perfecting Concealer. To impart a pop of color, Convertible Color in Poppy was added to cheeks and Cranberry Lip Glaze was pressed onto lips.

Tina then swept Stila Sun across the tops of the cheekbones and the bridge of the nose and the forehead to mimic a “sunburned/windburned face.”

Tina used Dune Eye Shadow, conservatively, on the lids – to keep the look bare. Finally, Brow Set was applied with #18 Dual Ended Brow Brush to create what Tina called an “indulgent eyebrow, Audrey Hepburn style.”

Before escaping the hustle and bustle backstage, I had the opportunity to chat up Stila celebrity makeup artist Sarah Lucero. I asked her to name her favorite products that real women can use to achieve runway looks.

“For Lela Rose, it’s all about the skin and healthy, flushed cheeks…so Convertible Color and the Tinted Moisturizer creates a really good sheer wash of color,” she replied. “It has SPF, hydration and pigment. So what it’s going to do is even out your skin with pigment versus heavy weight. It’s great for everyday women and it’s what we use on the runway. It’s so versatile and you can feel like a pro makeup artist everyday in your bathroom.”

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