BLOGGERS AS ART: Graphic T-shirts with portraits of bloggers and models by Danny Roberts are hitting Forever 21 today. The Laguna Niguel, Calif.-based artist said the portraits on the shirts of the bloggers behind Pandora, Fashion Squad, Because I’m Addicted, Style Bytes and Alice Point were culled from an existing series of blogger images, many of which he made to thank bloggers he reads and appreciates. Roberts isn’t sure if Forever 21 shoppers will recognize the bloggers, but he reasoned, “If they don’t know the blogger, hopefully they will just like the artwork.” The collaboration train isn’t stopping with Forever 21 for 24-year-old Roberts. In the works are a third collaboration with Gwen Stefani’s Harajuku Lovers and a first with men’s footwear brand Heutchy. “I really like collaborating with other companies that have more resources than I would have. It allows me to do bigger projects,” he said. For instance, Roberts noted his collaboration with Forever 21 will put some 100,000 T-shirts priced at $14.80 emblazoned with his art in the Los Angeles-based fast-fashion retailer’s stores and on its Web site.
ITALIAN HONORS: The list of new Cavalieri del Lavoro, one of the highest honors bestowed from the president of the Italian Republic, was made public this week, and the fashion industry counts three names: Blumarine designer Anna Molinari; entrepreneur Alessandro Benetton, heir to the family’s giant apparel manufacturing group, and Brunello Cucinelli, known for his cashmere designs. The official awards ceremony will take place in Rome in the fall at the Quirinale, the president’s official residence. Past recipients include the likes of Valentino Garavani, Emilio Pucci, Ottavio Missoni and Ermenegildo Zegna, among others
BOSS HITS THE HIGH SEAS: Diane Kruger swept into London’s Canary Wharf on Thursday night to slam a bottle of Pol Roger onto the newly remodeled Hugo Boss racing yacht. The actress, decked in Boss Black trousers and a branded black-and-white sailing jacket, christened the boat in front of a crowd of more than 600 guests, including British sporting celebrities David Coulthard, Ron Dennis and Sir Keith Mills. The “Hugo Boss” was built to sail solo around the world, and has recently been remodeled by yacht designer Juan Kouyoumdjian. Her skipper, the British yachtsman Alex Thomson, will be taking part in the Barcelona World Race in December 2010 and the Vendée Globe in 2012. Later this summer, the yacht will be setting off for decidedly less stressful journeys — to the Hamptons, Sardinia, Capri and Ibiza, where it will take part in a range of social and sporting activities.
FASHION FEAST: Talk about a power powwow. Last week, Sarah Jessica Parker and friends Laura Mercier and Serge Normant convened for dinner at London’s Claridge’s, where they tucked into oysters and caviar. Mercier was in town to launch her new fragrance, Ambre Passion Elixir, which she feted with a party Thursday night at Momo’s in Mayfair. The fragrance launched at Harrods on May 30, and will launch at Sephora in the U.S. on June 7.
IN HER FATHER’S FOOTSTEPS: There’s a new Caovilla in town. The daughter of famed footwear designer René Caovilla, Giorgia, will launch her first solo collection June 8 to 10 at the Plaza Hotel in New York, followed by a presentation in Milan at the Grand Hotel et de Milan. After 10 years spent working with her father, René, Caovilla said now it was “time to express” herself. And she was quick to point out that her collection is not meant to conflict with her father’s. Bowing for spring 2011, the collection is called Jour [day in French] by Giorgia Caovilla, and, as per the name, it is meant for a daily use and not for all those glitzy evening events René Caovilla caters to.
TAKING CONTROL: Missoni is bringing its children’s wear line in-house with the fall 2011 season. Aimed at girls ages 2 to 10, creative director Angela Missoni designed 21 styles, including jumper dresses, leggings, pulls and boleros. The collection is accessorized with 11 hat-and-scarf sets, featuring the house’s iconic zigzags and space-dyed motifs. Prices range from 230 euros, or $281.50 at current exchange, to 380 euros, or $465, for a dress. Sweaters retail at between 270 euros, or $330, and 330 euros, or $404. The collection was licensed to French manufacturer Children Worldwide Fashion until April 2009.
SHIFTING SPACES: Swarovski and MAC stores are relocating from Taubman Inc.’s Beverly Center mall to Caruso Affiliated’s shopping center The Grove in Los Angeles later this year. The moves are the latest coups for Caruso Affiliated president and chief executive officer Rick Caruso’s effort to cherry-pick retailers desired for his nine current properties from rivals. But Beverly Center general manager Jeff Brown took the store exits in stride. He said the departures of MAC and Swarovski, which he described as not a permanent Beverly Center tenant, are “all part of our grand leasing plan.” He noted Fendi and Prada stores are entering Beverly Center later this year, and an existing Louis Vuitton store is expanding into the space that MAC will vacate. Ultimately, Caruso may have a bigger Los Angeles prize in mind: the mayor’s seat. “I’m intrigued by it,” he said of a run for the office that Antonio Villaraigosa will be termed out of in 2013. “It is something that I’m more inclined to do lately, but I also love the business that I’m in.”
ALL FOR SPORT: Benetton’s sports division Verde Sport has opened its first recreational facility. Called “Primo Sport 0-2-4-6”, the center is aimed at developing motor and sensory skills in infants to six-year-olds. Located near Treviso, Italy, the space has seven developmental courses in which games are divided into theme-based routes according to the ability that they foster, such as manual skills, mobility and balance. The project was carried out in collaboration with the Motor Science University in Verona, which will publish a user’s manual of “Primo Sport 0-2-4-6” that will be given to the children’s parents. The center will likely be replicated nationally.