History in fashion’s greatest

For 125 years, the pages of renowned fashion magazine Vogue have been filled with the world’s highest-quality fashion photography. In celebration of that work, Seoul has been selected as the second city to host its special photo exhibition “Vogue Like a Painting.” The Seoul Arts Center in southern Seoul will host the exhibition until Oct. 7.

In the autumn of 2015, Vogue held its first photo exhibition at the Museo Thyssen-Bornemisza in Madrid, Spain which featured 60 fashion photographs inspired by famous paintings, hand-picked from the Vogue photo archive. This year, the exhibition has grown. The new projector director at Vogue Spain and curator of the exhibition, Debra Smith, added 41 more photos from the Vogue archive and 19 photos from Vogue Korea to add flavor to the gallery’s walls.

“Fashion is a difficult business. These days, fashion has become more of a business. Sometimes the artistic principles get easily replaced by commercial ones,” said Smith at the press conference on June 23.

While comparing a photographic work to that of a chef, Smith explained that this exhibition comes as “great ingredients,” such as the models, the makeup artists and photographers, were combined by the finest craftsmanship. “One of the aims is to slow people down. We’re going through our lives so fast, digesting images like fast food, like McDonalds,” added Smith.

The exhibition allows for a rare opportunity to witness the works of the 32 greatest photographers of our time, including Irving Penn, Paolo Roversi, Peter Lindbergh, Tim Walker, Nick Knight and Albert Watson. Taking after works from classic Dutch portraits to Monet’s impressionist landscapes and the postmodern abstract expressionism of Jackson Pollock, Vogue photographers have created a modern-day interpretation of historical artworks, capturing a timelessness that is simultaneously classic and modern.

The gallery is divided into five main sections - Portrait, Still Life, Rococo, Landscape and From the Avant-garde to Pop Art - with a separate special section featuring photos from Vogue Korea.

The portraits section welcomes visitors with a collection of photos influenced by famous portrait paintings across the ages. The photos pay homage to the history of portraiture, ending up with the fierce, yet elegant images of fashion models. Even without reading the provided explanations, visitors will be able to recognize the famous paintings of Johannes Vermeer, John Singer Sargent, Pisanello and Egon Schiele.

In the Still Life section of the gallery, visitors can see the delicate techniques of photographers that captured the lights, compositions and colors that the master craftsmen utilized in their paintings. Keeping the original on the objects like painters Vincent van Gogh, Jan Brueghel and Paul Cezanne, while at the same time putting a fashionable lens on the non-living models, the photos flaunt the artistic eye of its creators that saw beauty in the symbols each objects carried in a world obsessed with superficiality.

The Rococo style is a common theme found in many fashion shoots, because of its obvious elegance and combination of gold and pastel colors. The photos take the visitors through time to the Palace of Versailles, the birthplace of the exquisite French form of art.

Photos in the landscape section show fewer direct references to the originals on display. While some photos show an apparent relation to famous pieces such as Nascita de Venere (birth of Venus) by Sandro Botticelli, others give off only a subtle resemblance to forefathers, such as Jean-Honore Fragonard.

The section titled “From the Avant-garde to Pop Art” features the dynamic art movements that took place in the 20th century. The Bauhaus movement, abstract expressionism, American modernism, postmodernism, Pop Art and cubism are just some of the styles explored by the photographers’ creativity to create unique shots.

Vogue Korea is a special section added by Smith, who explained her reason for choosing Seoul as the second venue for the exhibition was because, “People [in Korea] have an appetite for art and learning about art.”

A separate room of the gallery allows visitors to see the Korean uniqueness infused into images by Korea’s most talented photographers such as Koo Bohn-chang, and a modern interpretation of the Korean culture by Paolo Roversi.Read more at:black evening dress | navy blue formal dress


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Working with Coach

Selena Gomez has shared how special it was to be able to witness Coach's Stuart Vevers vision come full circle.

Singer and actress Selena is the latest star to front a Coach campaign, with Chloe Grace Moretz and Gwyneth Paltrow both previously posing for the brand.

Selena debuts a more grown up look in the images, shot by Steven Meisel, and told InStyle U.K. it was an enlightening experience being a part of the Coach world.

"Seeing creative director Stuart Vevers' vision for the season come full circle was very special. From attending the show during New York Fashion Weed to actually shooting the campaign overlooking New York - it was all pretty surreal," she smiled.

"(Photographer) Steven Meisel is a legend so it was an honour to work with him for the first time. I'd say the vibe was very laid back."

Stuart was just as complimentary when it came to his new model, praising the 24-year-old's confidence and "strong" look.

When quizzed on what she loves most about being a Coach girl, Selena, who's currently dating Canadian singer The Weeknd, happily listed the pros of working with such an established label.

"Coach made me feel like family from day one. Having the opportunity to grow creatively by working on a design collaboration and reaching so many girls through the Coach Foundation is important to me and I love that Coach is supportive," she said.

"That is what instantly drew me to working with Coach after we had our initial meeting. Earlier this year (17) we spent the day visiting schools with the Step Up organisation, which Victor (Luis, Coach CEO) works very closely with. Days like that is why I love my job."Read more at:plus size evening wear | formal dress


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Eid Fest to revitalise

Eid Fest to revitalise spirit of Chand Raat

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An online fashion store Fabbitt is hosting a two-day Eid Fest in Lahore starting from today, June 24th.

Eid festivities are not going to be the same as it was traditionally celebrated in past year as this fest aims to revitalise the Eid sprit by offering mehdni, bangles and Eid jubilation under one roof.

It will be held in the cool comfort and secure environment of the air-conditioned marquees at the Royal Palm Golf & Country Club.

Anush Ammar, a young Standford graduate, is the brain behind Fabbitt. She has curated the concept of fashion, food, fun & technology - all coming together in one fabulous event.

Presenting some of the most sought after fashion designers of Pakistan, alongside delicious food and fashion accessories, Fabbitt is ensuring that Lahoris can gather at one place to regain the lost spirit of Eid.

Elan, Faraz Manan, Fahad Hussayn, Ivy, Farah Talib Aziz, Neemar Jewels, Republic, Zara Shahjahan, Amrapali, Maria B, Uptown, Khaadi, Bareeeze’ Men, Entertainer will all be participating in different capacities.

The event will be held on the 24th and 25th of June 2017 from 5:00pm to 3:00am. It is a family only event, where single men will not be allowed. Finja CEO Qasif Shahid, sharing her expectation from the Eid Fest, said that this is an excellent opportunity for the masses to gather at one place. “We want to build bridges between our tech savvy target market and a platform like this.

“Eid Fest is a wonderful initiative which primarily aims to revive the traditional spirit of chand raat where families used to gather together and celebrate festive occasions with enthusiasm,” she told The Nation.

“Eid Fest is providing a platform for everyone from all over the city to enjoy and celebrate Eid festivities with the grandeur and vitality that the holiday demands,” she added.

“Aiming to become a one-stop shop, the festival boasts a wide range of fashion accessories, designer clothes and food all under one roof so that all can celebrate Eid the way it is supposed to be celebrated - with loved ones,” said Anush Ammar, CEO oof Fabbitt.


People of all ages including women and children are filling in the markets ahead of Eidul Fitr arriving in the start of next week.

The shopping starts from Iftari and continues in late hours. .

Heavy rush could be witnessed near Anarkali, Model town bazaar, Sadaar Bazaar, Ichara, Panorama shopping mall and in others markets on Friday. While a number of shopkeepers are selling special Eid stuff at very high price because brands are going out of stock, different colourful stalls in big bazaars are becoming the only alternative left for the less privileged as they offer clothes, shoes and other items at relatively cheaper rates.

Akbar Khan, a shopkeeper at Anarkali bazaar, told The Nation: “In start of the holy month of fasting, I was really upset because there was no sale. But in the last week the turnover of audience is amazing.

“Eid is a festival on which everyone purchases new clothes and in these days, we generate good business,” he added.

“Eid shopping is gaining momentum as majority of buyers are coming for shopping after Iftar and taking interest in lawn suit and handmade shoes,” said Faisal Bajwa, a shopkeeper in Ichra Bazaar.

Arhum Farid, a housewife who was present at Liberty market, said: “Different varieties of lawns are spreading like fire these days in the markets and brands are coming up with appealing designs in both stitched and unstitched category.”

“The shopkeepers in Liberty market are charging 500,700 per outfit and there is no check on them,” shared the lady shopper.

With rise of buyers, massive traffic jams in the city’s busy market places were also seen with people claiming that the traffic wardens were imposing fines just to make their Eidi.Read more at:australian formal dresses


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Olympian Sakshi Malik and blade runner Shalini Saraswathi were felicitated by the IMC’s Ladies Wing in Mumbai .

■ Signed and sealed

ACTOR Karisma Kapoor’s divorce from her Delhi-based businessman husband Sunjay Kapur only came through a few months ago. Sunjay was quick to move on and remarry Priya Sachdev, his girlfriend of the past few years, and Karisma has also been spotted with her rumoured beau of several years, Sandeep Toshniwal. Toshniwal, who has been married for over a decade to Mumbai dentist Ashrita, is ready to sign on his dotted line too. On their next hearing at the Family Court in Bandra, which is slotted for July 19 (provided Toshniwal meets the consent terms for the divorce), the couple will, too, be divorced. There has been loose talk of him proposing marriage to Karisma and purchasing a three-bedroom home in Juhu. But if you ask us, remarriage or not, at least the couple will not have to play cat and mouse with the paparazzi.

■ Triple the trouble

NOW that Salman Khan’s upcoming film is ready for release, the superstar has decided to train all his energies on brother Arbaaz’s upcoming Dabanng film, the third in a series. The Khan boys have invited several directors to send in their scripts, and we hear they have shortlisted three. While one of them will obviously make the cut, the others are also being considered as independent films. Too much of a good thing, no?

■ Fit is fine

IF longevity is a measure of a successful marriage, the Rampals aren’t doing too bad for themselves. Sure, Arjun and Mehr have weathered several storms, but it does look like they’ve put it all behind them. When your diarist recently went over to say hello to Arjun on his upcoming film’s set, he complimented one of our skinny friends on her figure, but added she had a little bit of a tummy. “A mummy tummy,” she averred, to which Arjun said, “My wife had two kids, too. But she has an absolutely flat stomach.”

■ Full of joy

A few months ago, model Liza Golden Bhojwani shared images of herself from her modelling days and of a current, more fuller version of herself. She recalled days when she would eat, maybe, 20 pieces of edamame for a meal. And when she started eating normally and put on a few inches, the work stopped coming. Today, Liza, who is married to DJ and SoBo partygoer Karan Bhojwani, has turned into an advocate for body positivity. “The shift came last summer when I was trying to lose weight and no amount of dieting would work. So I just decided to go with my body’s natural plan for me. Of course, I exercise regularly and eat healthy but I don’t diet or starve at all. You shouldn’t aim for perfection because it isn’t a realistic goal. Just aim to look in the mirror and love what you see,” says Liza, who is also working on the Mumbai fashion week’s plus-size fashion show. On Friday, she will judge and mentor full-size models and get them to be runwayready. You go, girl.

■ Tailpiece

THIS young and strapping actor, who has a new film coming up shortly, has been dating a slightly older, but beguiling beauty for the past few years now. The couple keeps their relationship under wraps (the lady has only just got her divorce). But what we can’t understand is why they still need to meet surreptitiously. They met in London a few months ago, when both of them were in the city on work. We also hear they visited Oman for some privacy two weeks ago. Come on guys, out with it. There’s nothing more we love on this page than a good-looking couple.Read more at:short cocktail dresses | evening wear


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Stripes better

We have seen trends and fads in fashion being made and fade, but stripes are a classic. Re-emphasising that stripes never go out of style, Priyanka Chopra was recently seen in a multi-coloured striped suit from Etro, as she was vacationing in Prague.

The Quantico actor shared the photo on her official Instagram handle, with the beautiful city in the background. While it may be a tough job to pull off so many colours, Chopra – who has been acing the style game both in India and abroad – pulled it off yet again. The pink-blue-beige-black-red stripes of the bell-bottomed, bishop-sleeved pantsuit, cinched at the waist with a red belt, was a retro rainbow that hit gold. Her hair fell casually across her shoulders and the oversized retro sunglasses and marsala lips rounded off the look.

Malaika Arora too, joined the actors endorsing striped fashion, in a navy blue striped jumpsuit. The Chaiya Chaiya star was present at the star-studded launch of Gauri Khan’s designed restaurant ARTH in Mumbai. She looked her sultry best in the Deme by Gabriella number, rocking the cut-out jumpsuit with its plunging neckline and deep back with absolute elegance and sophistication. She styled her hair into a high-raised ponytail and teamed her attire with a red lipstick — both doing wonders to accentuate her high cheekbones.

Of the two, we think Arora looked ravishing in the simple yet classy outfit. Whom do you like better? Let us know in the comments’ section below.Read more at:unique formal dresses | cheap formal dresses online


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Tradition and Innovation

In Kenya, June 1 is Madaraka Day, which commemorates the day the country won internal self-rule from Britain—Madaraka being Swahili for the authority to make decisions. In Seattle, the 4th Annual Madaraka Festival is being held on June 24 at the Museum of Pop Culture. Described as a “night of music and purpose,” this all-ages event benefits One Vibe Africa, a grassroots, Seattle-based non-profit that produces music, art, dance, culture, poetry and film programming to empower youth in the Manyatta slum of Kisumu, Kenya.

This year’s theme, “African Music & Fashion,” is designed to challenge the stereotypical narrative that is typically dismissive of fashion and music from Africa. Njuguna WaGishuru of local group The Physics and KING 5 weather anchor Rhonda Lee have been tapped to serve as hosts. On top of a powerful musical lineup, Madaraka 2017 also features a runway fashion show and the premier of Madaraka The Documentary, a film focusing on empowering communities through entrepreneurship and the arts.

Headlining this year’s festival is Chimurenga Renaissance, comprised of Hussein Kalonji and Tendai Maraire. Both are the sons of well-known African musicians—Congolese guitar legend Raymond “Braynck” Kalonji, and Zimbabwean mbira master Abraham Dumisani Maraire. In addition, Tendai Maraire is also one half of the mysterious Seattle hip-hop duo Shabazz Palaces. Apparently, some of that mystique has rubbed off on the description of this group. “Chimurenga Rennaisance were ordained to build a bridge strong enough to span oceans, but doesn’t fall off. Under the waters, they’re waiting with paws each larger than the head of a lion, rows of teeth, and jaws stronger than a Megalodon. Together, they’re the black leviathan, panther of the deep.”

Other performers include Los Angeles-based, Grammy nominated Ghanaian singer-songwriter Rocky Dawuni; local producer-singer-songwriter Otieno Terry; Juba, South Sudan born and former refugee turned international recording artist Dynamq (aka THE SUDANESE CHILD), and San Francisco/Bay Area based, Ethio-American singer, composer, and cultural instigator, Meklit Hadero, who is also the third member of CopperWire (Burntface and Gabriel Teodros), a group that, to use the word of Rakim, "travels at magnificent speeds around the universe."

Providing backing for the performers are Pyramid, the Madaraka Festival’s house band since 2014 which includes members of Kore Ionz, Theoretics, Clinton Fearon and the Boogie Brown Band, and Grieves, as well as the stage, studio, and educational production company Big World Breaks, directed by Aaron Walker-Loud.

This year’s collection of dynamic and dedicated performers, artists and producers at Madaraka 2017 look to affirm the vital, yet widely undervalued work of One Vibe Africa, an organization that works tirelessly to “inspire youth toward a deeper appreciation of their culture and traditions."Read more at:orange formal dresses | red formal dresses


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Charity fashion show

A CATWALK model is giving cancer survivors the chance to sparkle.

Firefighter Kirsty Hornby, 29, UK Royal Ms beauty pageant winner, is helping Widnes mum Sam Lewis to stage a charity fashion show.

Sam launched a support group, Sam’s Diamonds two years ago to give women who are young at heart the strength to conquer the disease.

The 42-year-old, from Farnworth, wants to celebrate the determination women have shown as they battle for survival.

Kirsty, who is travelling to Orlando later this month to compete for the international title Royal International Miss, said: “Sam is such a strong, inspirational woman.

“Her charity is precious to those women who have been on or completed their cancer journey.”

Breast cancer survivor Sam, had six months of chemotherapy, a full mastectomy and radiotherapy.

The mum-of-three said: “This is all about getting self esteem and confidence.

“Twenty three of our ladies will have a complete makeover and strut their stuff and tear up the runway!

“It will be a tear jerker but a very positive celebration.”

Sam is Kirsty’s former secondary school PE teacher.

Kirsty, from Prescot, added: “Hearing about the challenges faced by Sam and her family throughout her treatment made me want to contribute to her charity and help other brave women undergoing the same struggles.

“The Sam’s Diamond fashion show will give these remarkable women and their children the chance to take part in a fun, glamorous event and hopefully raise money for a very worthy cause.

“We hope everyone will come along, have fun, and help give these ‘diamond’ women an evening to remember.”

The group recently welcomed its 100th member.

Sam’s Diamonds fashion show is on Saturday, June 24 at the Select Security Stadium in Widnes.

The catwalk starts at 6pm.

Marks and Spencer in Widnes is providing clothes with Cinders Party Dress in Hale village.

Tesco Widnes is providing clothes for the children.

Clothes and prom dresses donated by boutiques and designers will be auctioned off on the night.

The evening will include live performances by Abby Marshall and Motown band Dirty Little Secret.

Health and wellbeing stalls and cancer support agencies will also be taking part.

All proceeds are being donated to Sam’s Diamond Cancer Support Charity.

The charity holds fortnightly meetings across the north west to help women make like-minded friends while undergoing treatment.Read more at:evening wear | cocktail dress australia


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The sweet life

Beth Ditto, basketball fan. Who knew?

"I really love the NBA," the 36-year-old singer said last month from her home in Portland, Ore., as the playoffs raged, never mind that her home team the Trailblazers had been eliminated by the Golden State Warriors in the first round.

"I never thought I would love sports," she says, "but living in a town with a major team is so much fun. What other area of life can you walk into a place -- no matter your weight, your class, your ethnicity, your politics, your sexuality -- and you're all dressed alike? When you go to a ballgame, before you know it, you might be high-fiving a Trump voter."

It's hard to believe that Ditto, an outspoken lesbian from Judsonia who fronted the dancey-punk trio Gossip for 17 years and shot to fame with the fierce, righteous and highly danceable gay rights anthem "Standing in the Way of Control," would ever have much in common with a Trump fan, but such is the power of sports, and the sweet charm of Ditto.

She was calling from Portland to talk about her fantastic debut solo album, Fake Sugar, which will be released by Virgin on Friday, and the dissolution of the long-running Gossip, a band of outcasts who fled White County in the late '90s for the greener punk rock pastures of the Pacific Northwest.

The album was recorded in Los Angeles and produced by Jennifer Decilveo, who also co-wrote many of the songs with Ditto.

"She was the Rollerblades to my roller skates," Ditto says.

"Anytime you hear Beth Ditto singing you know it's her," says Decilveo from New York. "She has a sweet spot in her voice and, once she gets there, I'm like 'Yes!' She has this strained-vibrato thing that is so unique and

so cool."

That may be most evident on Fake Sugar's fifth track, the expansive, pop ode to escapism "We Could Run," an early contender for song of the summer and a tune Ditto has said is about her Searcy friend and former band mate, Nathan Howdeshell.

"Dude, that was so good," Decilveo says quickly when the track is mentioned. Hearing the finished version, she says, "was like angels singing in my ear. I freaked out."


There's a dance feel to the album, but it is much more organic than Gossip's 2012 swan song, A Joyful Noise and Ditto's eponymous 2011 solo EP, leaning more toward soulful pop takes on relationships, family and maturity.

"I don't know how it is in Arkansas, but it seems like everyone became DJs and stopped being in bands," says Ditto, who married girlfriend Kristin Ogata in 2015. "That's great. Dance music is incredible music, but I found myself missing bands. I missed organic sounds and hearing beautiful guitar."

One of her favorite groups, she says, is Alabama Shakes. "They are the best rock band right now, hands down, and thank God, because they've brought back rock 'n' roll."

On "Go Baby Go," Ditto pays homage to Alan Vega, co-founder of influential no-wave duo Suicide, who died last year at 78; she also pulled inspiration from Paul Simon's 1986 album Graceland and a visit to Elvis' Graceland home in Memphis for Fake Sugar's title cut, a pensive but optimistic track that would sound perfect on a lazy Sunday morning.

It's also on this track that she nods most obviously to her Southern upbringing, referencing the schoolyard knee-slapping "hambone" chant and the colloquial "Yankee dime."

"I had to ask her what a Yankee dime was," New Jersey-raised Decilveo says with a laugh. "It's a kiss."

On the fierce, booty-shaking "Ooh, La La," Ditto sends a shout-out to her beloved family, singing "Two sisters/four brothers/hard worker/like my mother ..." and, later, "Smooth talker/I'm a lover/firecracker/I get it from my mother's mother."

The album's first single, the slow-burning, dance-blues romp "Fire" has already racked up more than 1 million plays on Spotify. The video finds Ditto decked out in a shiny outfit adorned with flames and a switchblade and singing away as a bar fight evolves into a hunky cowboy line dance.

At one point, she uses a whip to snatch a corn dog for herself just before a bar patron is about to take a bite and eagle-eyed viewers will catch a fleeting glimpse of the Arkansas flag in the background. The whole affair is classic Ditto -- sassy, good-humored and proud of her roots.


Her biological father was a Patterson, but she has always been a Ditto.

"If you go to Jud, I'm a Ditto. Nobody would know me as a Patterson. I didn't know my real dad until I was older. My sister was a Ditto. My two brothers are Dittos," she says. "People think it's a made-up punk thing because it's such a cool last name. I remember watching Ghost and saying 'Mama, they just said our name,' and she was like, 'Yeah, it's a word.' I had no idea. So I was raised a Ditto, but never legally adopted. It's very Arkansan. My people!"

She is the fourth of her mother Myra's six children, plus one adopted brother, and she spent much of her childhood shuffling between relatives' homes in the small town near Searcy in White County. She also lived with the man she considers her father, Homer Ditto, in Georgetown and was surrounded not only by her siblings but cousins and adults who came and went.

It was a childhood of instability, poverty and abuse, which Ditto detailed in her riveting and sometimes harrowing 2012 memoir Coal to Diamonds with writer Michelle Tea. The book is dedicated to Homer Ditto, who died in 2011.

"Moving back and forth among so many houses, I didn't feel like I belonged anywhere. If anyone asked me where I lived I didn't know what to say. Here and there, I guess," she wrote. The girl who would grow up to start her own fashion line for plus-size women kept what few clothes she had in a bag under the kitchen sink of her aunt's house.


By the time she was 12 she was identifying as a feminist and soon discovered the Riot Grrrl movement from the Pacific Northwest. Through bands like Sleater-Kinney, Huggy Bear and Bikini Kill and writings in handmade 'zines, Riot Grrrl emphasized the political and social power of women, embraced the do-it-yourself aesthetic of punk rock and welcomed lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people. Ditto was entranced.

In high school she sang in the choir and reveled in her outsider status. She became adept at dyeing her hair with a mixture of Kool-Aid powder and Noxzema, started singing in a band called Little Miss Muffett and was beginning to realize she was a lesbian.

At 14, she befriended fellow nonconformists Kathy Mendonca, Jeri Beard and guitarist Howdeshell, who were a little older and from nearby Searcy. Those friendships changed her life.

When Mendonca left Searcy for Evergreen State College in Olympia, Wash. -- practically Ground Zero of Riot Grrrl -- Beard and Howdeshell followed. Ditto graduated from Riverview High School and, with a one-way ticket to Olympia sent from Mendonca, she left Judsonia for Washington.

"I needed to be with them," she says. "My brother, Benny, and my sister, Akasha, dropped me off at the airport and were like, 'Bye. Get out of here.' They didn't want me to stay there. They knew I had to get out."

In Olympia, she formed Gossip with guitarist Howdeshell and first Beard, then Mendonca, on drums.

The trio of Arkansas misfits would soon tour with their heroes in Sleater-Kinney and their amateurish, rough-hewn sound on early efforts like 2002's Arkansas Heat would give way to the more confident crunch of 2003's Movement and on to the polish of Standing in the Way of Control (with Hannah Blilie replacing Mendonca) and the Rick Rubin-produced Music for Men from 2009.

The band gained a loyal following, especially in Europe, playing highly charged sets at festivals like Glastonbury and touring constantly. Ditto turned heads with her fashion line and posed naked on the cover of Love magazine. She also wrote a column, "What Would Beth Do" for The Guardian and keeps a home in the Hackney borough of London.

After 17 years, though, Gossip is done, prompted mostly by songwriting partner Howdeshell's return to White County to care for his ailing father.


"He moved back and just stayed," Ditto says, which put a strain on writing new Gossip music.

Ditto frequently returns to Arkansas to visit with family -- she was in Cabot for a niece's graduation a few days after this interview -- but has no desire to spend much time here.

"As much as I love it down there, and as much as I love my family, I don't live there anymore and there's a reason I don't live there. I don't feel safe."

The pair did work briefly with producer Jason Weinheimer in Little Rock on some Gossip material, she says.

"He was excellent. Boy, we loved him and had a good time." But otherwise things weren't working out.

"I just texted [Howdeshell] and I said, 'Hey, I've been trying to write the Gossip record for two years. I've been beating myself up because it doesn't sound like Gossip and I feel really bad.'"

She told him that maybe it was time for her to just do her own thing.

He replied, "Let that baby fly," says Ditto, a spin on "Y'all let that baby eat," which is what Homer Ditto would tell anyone who tried to stop Beth from getting seconds at the dinner table as a child.

"That's how Nathan and I work," she says, laughing. "That was his response, which was really funny."

Howdeshell has a small label, Fast Weapons, and has released music by fellow Searcian Bonnie Montgomery, with whom he has also played guitar, and Little Rock native John Pugh's Vision Control project. Through a mutual friend, Howdeshell declined to comment for this story.

"When you leave somewhere and create this thing together, to see him return was really hard for me," she says. "But Nathan and I aren't bitter. We have nothing bad to say about each other at all."

And she still has her other Arkansas buddies.

"Jeri, literally, lives right across the street from me. I can look into his window. We're still really close. Kathy lives across town and I'm going to baby-sit her little girl on Sunday. We call ourselves the Searcy Babies."

For the foreseeable future, Ditto will be on the road. A tour kicked off Saturday in Columbus, Ohio, and will have her performing across much of the United States and Europe through October (sorry, there are no Natural State stops as of now).

"Nothing made me think I wanted to do this," she says when asked about her career, which has found her not only seeing the world as the frontwoman of Gossip with her high school friends, but recording with Blondie, appearing in the Tom Ford film Nocturnal Animals, runway modeling and posing in fashion magazines, becoming a role model for plus-size women and speaking out on gay and lesbian issues. "When I was little, people would ask me what I wanted to be and I would say 'A nurse, or a singer' or 'A hairdresser, or a singer.' But I didn't know.

"I had an aunt who died when I was 15. I always felt she had some kind of -- and I know this is really out there -- but I always felt like she had some sort of real sweet plan for me. I just didn't know what it was. Then I met Nathan and Jeri and Kathy and I just had no idea. They were so cool."Read more at:evening dresses australia | year 10 formal dresses


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Indian weddings of all time

Before you read this, we are going to need you to do something for us. Take a deep breath, go to your happy place and throw back to that wedding bucketlist you made in your childhood. All the romantic fantasies that you prophesied for your big day, remember them? Now open your eyes and watch all those dreams pale to a shadow in front of the biggest, most lavish weddings that money can buy.

From Lakshmi Mittal’s daughter’s Palais de Versailles blowout to Adel Sajan’s Dil Dhadakne Do-themed cruise wedding, these affairs are the height of first world-ness. Love them, hate them, you know you’ve ogled at them.

Vanisha Mittal and Amit Bhatia

What does a price tag of Rs 240 crore fetch you in the wedding market? For starters, a guestlist headlining Shah Rukh Khan, performances by Kylie Minogue and Aishwarya Rai Bachchan and the luxury of being the only private event to have ever been conducted at the Palais de Versailles. Steel mogul Lakshmi Mittal’s daughter Vanisha’s wedding has charted history as the second most expensive wedding in the world, and with good reason.

Sanjay Hinduja and Anu Mahtani

UK-based millionaire and secret Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani binge-watcher Sanjay Hinduja decided to tie the knot with fashion designer Anu Mahtani in Udaipur, but don’t let the lack of a foreign locale deceive you.The lavish nuptials, billed at 147 crore rupees, flew down the likes of Jennifer Lopez and Nicole Scherzinger who were applauded by an audience starring Ranveer Singh, Arjun Kapoor and Preity Zinta among others.

The guests were chauffeured around exclusively in BMWs, the bride was dripping head-to-toe in Manish Malhotra and the 16,000 wedding party was reportedly showered in rose petals. Just in case you were wondering where the phrase big, fat Indian wedding originated from.

Brahmani and Rajeev Reddy

While you were sweating out your body weight in ATM queues during the demonetisation spell last year, mining baron Janardhan Reddy’s daughter Brahmani was drowning too — but under the weight of her Rs 17 crore Kanjeevaram sari and Rs 90 crore worth of jewels.

The guests weren’t doing too badly either — after receiving personalised wedding invites via LCD screens (that reportedly cost a whopping Rs 5 crore), they were fed in utensils crafted out of pure gold and silver. After drawing the ire of the cash-strapped masses, the hosts tried to downplay the Rs 500 crore bill to just 30 crores. The math speaks for itself, but let’s just say that you won’t ever catch us turning down an invite from the Reddy household.

Adel Sajan and Sana Khan

When you’re talking about the wedding of the heir to one of the richest men in the Middle East, we weren’t exactly expecting a frugal affair. But Adel Sajan’s wedding to model Sana Khan probably outdid their own expectations with a Dil Dhadakne Do-themed wedding on a cruise that set sail from Barcelona to Cannes.

Badshah dropped some of his sick tunes onstage while Malaika Arora Khan, Shilpa Shetty Kundra and others dotted the crowd. Oh, and Michelin-starred chef Fabio Cucchelli whipped up a 13-tier wedding cake that towered 3.5 metres over the wedding party. Pretty decent for a paycheque of Rs 200 crore, yes?

Sonam Vaswani and Navin Fabiani

When your daddy is the richest Indian in the Gulf, your wedding can exclude literally nothing, including the hashtag SoNavSoFab. The wedding party pre-gamed at Palais Ferstel in Vienna before living it up in Belvedere Palace for the main ceremony. The happy bride wore Manish Malhotra and uncut diamonds and was serenaded to her happily-ever-after by singing sensation Bruno Mars.Read more at:http://www.marieaustralia.com/melbourne-formal-dress-shops | plus size evening wear


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Skinny Everything

Skinny stretch… Super stretch… Super skinny… Lightweight stretch… Slim fit… Perfectly Slimming skinny!! The list is endless and mind-boggling. The rare times that I do go shopping… I actually detest shopping and only do it when I need something and reluctantly venture out when the situation gets critical… I only end up wondering what happened to simple and fun shopping!

A recent shopping experience with my family resulted in me furrowing my brows in great speed in annoyance and disapproval. The one thought that crossed my mind as we moved from store to store was: “Are only ‘Thin People’… Beautiful?” What happens to other ‘normal’ people who come in various sizes? Now I call the ‘not skinny people’ normal as everyone’s bodies weren't created equal.

Let’s get real out here: Fat shaming and vanity sizing makes shopping impossible! It's undeniable that the fashion industry is plus-size-averse. There is this passive discrimination of framing most dialogue around straight sizes only, and then there is the very active, very hurtful discrimination and animosity against men and women who don't fit into a sample size. Beyond that, there's also a frustrating production barrier that prevents plus-size clothing from being made in the first place. For any trade, it's totally counterintuitive that an industry could so obviously not cater to the largest demographic out there — but that's exactly how the plus-size world is.

Therein lies the flaw. And most top-notch brands are not alone in its ‘skinny-only’ mind-set. Many stores don’t bother carrying above a certain size that only caters to the skinny despite the fact the average person is not skinny! Youngsters these days are fumbling with ways and means of being skinny… they resort to unhealthy weight control methods, including skipping meals and purging in an obsessive pursuit of bodies that are the ‘in thing’… The damage being done has grave consequences and let’s not forget how skinny clothes just do not suit every body type.

Those forcing themselves into such clothes are a sight for sore eyes. The latest rage of having formal and semi-formal trousers in the skinny fit just doesn’t go down well at all. Men particularly look strange and peculiar walking around work spaces in skinny sized trousers and formal suits!

In an ideal world where body size, character, and worth were not conflated, perhaps life would be different but we do not live in that world, and teenagers above a certain size are already taught they’re not good enough unless skinny. One would think, sitting in a store that the only people who actually shop are diminutive. Because, when it comes to numbers, there's a huge discrepancy thanks to this prejudice.

The first step toward change is acknowledging the problem and why the whole fashion industry needs a change of perspective. Lately, many stores have been blasted for their 'unrealistically small' clothes and ‘one size fits all’ attitude. I think skinny jeans are a horrible modern invention.

Let’s play out a scene: You suddenly realise you need a pair of jeans. The old pair seems to have lost all its oomph and style. It starts all nice walking casually into a store. It's all downhill from there though. The jeans are supposed to remind you that life sucks and everything can fall apart at any given instant, so you might as well be dreadfully uncomfortable while you wait for the inevitable. Even the process of trying them on is a disaster from the word go. From a distance, the jeans don't look all that terrible and you decide to take the plunge.

The fact that you're supposed to get one size larger than your actual waist size should be a big fluttering red flag, but no one pays any attention to that. You walk to the trial room feeling on top of the world holding tightly to this refined piece of fabric. Getting them on is slightly wearisome, but you realise it's not as bad as you'd imagined. The top, the waist area, is loose and roomy so it seems like a comfortable fit. But that's just a mirage. Around the knees is where disaster is waiting to unfold. They're awkwardly clingy and stubborn and refuse to let go - an albatross around your waist.

Skinny jeans, the sartorial equivalent of the walls caving in, will suffocate you into submission sooner or later. It's when you realise the only way you can leave is by buying them and walking out from the store in that very pair for getting out of them in one big chore!

There's a lot that goes into getting the consumer inside that room. The amount of advertising being chucked at you from multiple angles to convince you of their value is extravagant. They're fashionable, they're hip, they're trendy, they're chic and stylish, everyone's wearing them, and so you must as well. Even rappers, tastemakers and forever the signifiers of where modern fashion trends are going to head because of the innate coolness of hip-hop music, have ditched their floating baggy jeans adopting skinny jeans as their trouser of choice.

By default, the coolness of an item of clothing goes up markedly once it gets the endorsement of a ‘biggie’… As for me, I own two pairs of fairly uncool ‘blue’ jeans. Recently, one of them suddenly looked bedraggled and so I decided to buy a new one and definitely not skinny Jeans. What I needed was a pair of simple, regular, straight-fitting blue jeans. Unfortunately, such Jeans do not exist. I tried everywhere from malls to tiny stores to local markets to online shopping but their very existence has been deviously wiped out.

The market is flooded with pre-faded, torn, cut, ripped, bright neon, any colour but the colour blue, hideous jeans! You know that lovely blue… Yes, that Jeans were known to be have been obliterated from the face of this earth. It sounds like bad luck, a reason to try harder and look elsewhere. But what's going on is far more sinister than that. The employee helping you out at the store is trained to hand you one rubbish overpriced item after another, pretending like he doesn't understand what plain, blue, straight, and normal mean. All of this is a cleverly designed step-by-step ploy intended to break your spirit.

Skinny jeans on men have not had a good name. “Aren’t his jeans too tight?” seems to be the most common question on people’s lips. But what people are really saying, and what the central argument against skinny jeans on men is, “Shouldn’t guys give some room to breathe!”

But of course, fashion has never been about advantages of health, or safety. It appears that both men and women are slaves to fashion even when it is detrimental to your well-being and attitude!Read more at:cheap formal dresses online | evening gowns


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Ribcage bragging

Ribcage bragging has been dubbed the latest body 'trend' on social media, but Irish medical experts say the idealisations can be especially damaging to young women and girls.

While trends in fashion have been around and religiously followed for centuries past, in recent years the idea of creating a trend out of a coveted body shape has become more popular.

First came the thigh gap, then the ab crack, and now ribcage bragging, whereby celebrities proudly display their protruding ribcages in perfectly posed photos on social media.

A quick scroll through supermodel Bella Hadid's Instagram feed and you can quickly see such photos, with swarms of other celebrities, including Kourtney Kardashian and Emily Ratajkowski, following suit as they share images in their bikinis and underwear.

While it's no secret that social media can negatively affect users' mental health, the pressure to follow body 'trends' in an effort to look like celebrities can be even more damaging.

Fiona Flynn, Youth Development Officer at Bodywhys, told Independent.ie that the 'trend' is "very worrying."

"The 'ribcage bragging' trend is very worrying as it promotes a very thin ideal which most people would not achieve at a healthy weight.

"Internalisation of the thin ideal can contribute to body image issues in girls which may encourage engagement in unhealthy weight loss behaviours to achieve a similar shape. Unhealthy weight loss behaviours such as extreme dieting or use of diet pills combined with body dissatisfaction can put a young person at a higher risk of developing an eating disorder or related issue."

Ms Flynn highlighted that while consumers are aware of Photoshop and editing in magazines, it's not often that people recognise how highly altered photos on social media can be.

"Many young people are media literate about magazines and the images we see in advertising but less so about social media. The images we see on social media are often presented in a casual way, yet may be subject to similar styling and post production as the images we see in advertising. Celebrities can attract lucrative advertising and product endorsement deals through a large following on social media."

"There are many benefits to social media and young people have a wealth of easily accessible information at their fingertips, but the steady stream of images promoting a similar beauty ideal - thin for girls and muscular for men - can lead young people to a much greater focus on the physical body and encourage young people to compare themselves and feel inadequate."

Systemic Psychotherapist Anne McCormack, author of Keeping Your Child Safe on Social Media, says the idealisations can be especially damaging to young women and girls.

"Social media is an especially toxic environment for young girls, teens and women in their twenties because it is so focused on appearance. It can have a huge impact if you're feeling vulnerable about yourself or your body image.

"This new trend puts more pressure to exercise more or watch your diet, while having a focus on showing your ribs is risky behaviour. Young people on social media are at a stage of development, and feedback from their peers online helps them work out what other people think of them. If they're following models, young people may think that they have to aspire to look like them to be of high worth. It's very risky."

Ms McCormack noted how young people and children are particularly vulnerable online, and it's important to remind them and ourselves that how we look isn't the most important thing in life.

"People who have a huge following have a responsibility to act responsibly online and watch the message they give. Even if the attention they're receiving is negative, the young person can be thinking, 'Well, they're still getting attention, even if it's negative.'"

"They're already under massive pressure, so social media and these 'trends' can be quite toxic. They're all to do with punishing yourself, which is such unhealthy behaviour. It can do major damage to their self esteem.

"It's important to remind ourselves and remind them that how we look isn't the most important thing about who we are, although social media can make it feel like it is. We can recognise these trends as unhealthy, but we can still fall in to the trap."

Unsurprisingly, exposure to these pressures can have long-term effects on the user's mental health.

"In the long term, these pressures can have a potential outcome on the person's mental health, with anxiety, self worth issues and eating disorders all potential problems," said Ms McCormack.

"If the belief is developed, it can become more important than other things, they can become self-absorbed and it takes energy away from other interests."

Keeping lines of communication open is the most important thing parents can do to help their children understand that what they see on social media isn't always attainable, says Ms Flynn.

"I think it can be helpful to discuss beauty ideals we see in the media The images we see often promote ideals which are unrealistic and unattainable. I think it can be helpful to talk to young people about how people can modify their appearance online, why celebrities post so often and what they stand to gain or earn.

"I think it can also be helpful to point out to young people the control they have over their social media feed. Encourage them to be aware how different types of social media or different items they follow can make them feel. You could suggest that if they tend to feel guilty, want to change themselves or feel otherwise less happy about themselves after certain posts that they can choose to unfollow them - and instead to like or follow posts and people that inspire them."

Ms McCormack advises the same, adding that she feels it's likely "we'll wonder how we exposed young people to these things at such a young age while they're still figuring out who they are" in years to come.

"I'd advise to check who your children are following on social media and find out why. Keep enquiring and ask them why they like them. It's very important to be tuned in to and aware of who your children are following and to talk to them about it."Read more at:yellow formal dresses | green formal dresses


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Modest fashion

When Ruba Zai uploaded her first video online, the Netherlands-based Afghan student just wanted to share with other Muslim girls and women how she styled her headscarf. She had no idea that her "hijab tutorials" would be an internet hit, watched by hundreds of thousands worldwide.

The 23-year-old now blogs full time, sharing ideas for how to look trendy yet covered-up with a million Instagram followers. Zai had tapped into a fast-growing market for so-called "modest fashion," fuelled by young, style-savvy Muslim women from London to Malaysia who have long felt their needs ignored by mainstream designers.

"I just couldn't relate at all to the clothes you see in the mainstream brands," she said from her home in Rotterdam. "When we first started talking about our style on social media, there was no interest in the fashion world in this group of people: 'They're just Muslims, why should we target them?"'

Big brands have been waking up to that call, and covered-up chic is a niche that's slowly making its way into mainstream fashion. From exclusive designers to fast-fashion chains, retailers are trying to court millions of Muslim consumers -- especially around the month of Ramadan, which started last week, when many Muslims buy new clothes and dress up. In 2014, U.S. fashion house DKNY was one of the first Western brands to launch a Ramadan collection aimed at wealthy Arab shoppers.

Since then several others have followed suit. Dolce&Gabbana has been selling a luxury collection of abayas -- long, loose robe-like dresses -- and matching headscarves since 2016 in the Middle East, Paris and London. At the more affordable end of the market, Spanish chain Mango is also promoting a Ramadan collection of tunics, kaftans and maxi dresses for the second year.

Earlier this year Nike became the first major brand to launch a "pro hijab," a headscarf made in high-tech fabrics aimed at female Muslim athletes. Even Marks and Spencer, that stalwart British department store known for cardigans and practical shoes, launched a burkini -- a full-body swimsuit -- last summer.

But perhaps the most visible sign yet that mainstream fashion is embracing the Muslim market was when design houses Max Mara and Alberta Ferretti starred hijab-wearing Somali-American model Halima Aden on their catwalks for Milan Fashion Week, one of the industry's most prestigious events.

"Mainstream fashion is now talking about modest fashion as a thing. Ten years ago, if you were a brand coming from a religious background and tried to sell it in a department store, calling it a modest or Muslim brand would be a kiss of death," said Reina Lewis, a professor at the London College of Fashion who has written two books about the topic.

While the majority of those interested in covered-up fashion are young, cosmopolitan Muslim women, "the term 'modesty' emerged in the niche market as a useful one because it's not faith-specific," Lewis added.

"I know Christians and atheist friends who don't cover their heads but they dress this way because that's how they feel most comfortable, said Zai, the blogger.

Nazmin Alim, a designer who founded London-based modest fashion brand Aab a decade ago, says she used to have to buy fabric herself and visit a tailor to get smart work wear that still adhered to her faith's modesty edicts.

"Long skirts may have a slit, tops may be sleeveless," she said. "We understood then that, do you know what? The people who wanted this kind of clothing, they are hungry for it."

This month, Alim's collection of trendy jumpsuits, kimonos and knee-length hoodies -- as well as more traditional abayas and headscarves -- is being sold at Debenhams, a British department store that says it's the first of its competitors to add hijabs to its aisles.

The fashion industry's attempts at carving a corner of this market haven't been without criticism, especially in France, where the banning of headscarves and burkinis amid racial tensions and security fears have fuelled a heated debate.

Laurence Rossignol, the former French minister for families, children and women, was reported saying last year that major brands that promote Islamic dress were "irresponsible" and that such garments "promote the confinement of women's bodies."

Zai and Alim maintain, however, that for women like them, it's all about respecting individual choice.

"We all make choices -- some people like to wear gothic, some people like what we're offering," Alim said. "I don't see why anyone's style should be singled out."

"I try to stay away from the political debate," said Zai, who said she decided to cover her head three years ago after a period of religious reflection. "I don't think a group of men -- the people you see (in government) are all these old men -- can tell people what's allowed, what's not allowed . they're saying Muslim women are oppressed, but they're doing the same."Read more at:unique formal dresses | cocktail dresses australia


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