Showing posts with label hotel designer. Show all posts
Showing posts with label hotel designer. Show all posts

8/14/12

Vail, Co: High Fashion & Pop Art

Vail is undoubtedly unrivaled when it comes to skiing the back bowls. However when it comes to fashion and art, many perceive Vail to take a back seat to it uber wealthy and chic neighbor, Aspen. After a bit of hands on investigating, I beg to differ.
Visiting Luca Bruno Due, and Luca Bruno in Vail, Co , I found exceptional international brands that rival what I find when traveling big cities throughout the world. However, I felt like I was shopping in my own town with a personal friend; in the business. Both of their fashion houses offer exclusive brands hand selected by owners Luca and Jen Bruno for their growing international client list.

I've been shopping at Luca Bruno for almost a decade, adding pieces annually that I still wear today. Luca is so personable and warm with his authentic Italian accent and zealous Italian hand jesters, you cant help but find him fabulously endearing. In fact, I still remember the first day we met him. I walked in with my very Italian father, Vito Cangelosi, and was offered hard parmesan cheese cut off a huge block in the front of the store. His wife Jen, raised in Manhatten, has such a great eye for hip and cool pieces in luxe brands that are modern yet wearable in the casual yet chic ski town of Vail, Co or a big city like Houston, Dallas, or Austin.

When walking thru the store, I as instantly drawn to an amazing modern yet timeless designed suit jacket by Les Copains. It became even more coveted when Jen told me it was worn recently by the stylish and beautiful Catherine Zeta Jones.

I had the honor of meeting the sophisticated CEO of Les Copains, Paolo Torello-Viera, in town with an amazing array of pieces from the Fall ready to wear line, joining the Brunos for a private style show at the nearby exclusive Sonnenalp Hotel. The Italian brand surprisingly named after French talk show, Les Copains, is 100 % Italian, designed and manufactured in Italy.

Coming from my background of an Italian owned family business with a focus on craftsmanship and quality, I was impressed to learn from Paolo that the owner himself, Mario Bandiera who founded the company in 1959, still walks the factory in Bologna daily, overseeing every detail of the line personally.

Knitwear is the primary element of the line, with cashmere as Les Copains first love, even as the brand has evolved throughout the years. Currently designed by Alessandro Dell Acqua, there is an elegance mixed with a sensuality that is very glamorous and luxurious without being stuffy.

The headliner piece was a fabulous cable knit cashmere sweater that was surprising lightweight due to its genius design of a base sheer layer of cashmere. The reality is that Les Copains created a uber stylish sweater that can be worn and belted by real women who aren't necessarily 6 foot tall and 100 pounds. For myself and my amazingly talented yet equally short friend, Tricia Swenson, there was a shorter version that was a better proportion for petite girls who are better suited with pieces that synch at the waist.

The even more practical yet equally sporty chic equestrian line is Les Copains Blue. I found a pair of irresistible suede like jodhpurs that will be fab with riding boots and a tailored jacket. My favorite look was a vintage styled Gucci or Versace turtleneck that took me back to my early days in Vail with big hair and deglo ski jackets. Thank goodness we aren't revisiting those trends.

The timeless sporty aristocratic vibe that dates back to the brands inception comes through loud and clear with the tundra and military accents. The menswear houndstooth, mini checks and prince of whales patterns are offset by a form fitting feminine silhouette of the 21st century woman.

What would be the ultimate piece of outerwear for a ski town and a Texas woman? The amazingly stylish and ├╝ber luxe fur brand, Dennis Basso. I had the pleasure of meeting the stylish and debonaire New Yorker Mitchell Adelman, International Director of Sales for Dennis Basso. I was utterly delighted to see, feel and try the beautiful pieces made from exotic sable, chinchilla, mink, and lynx.

Dennis Basso is the leading American furrier, at the top of the style chain with a combination of modern styling reminiscent of times past. The Fall 2012 collection trunk show showcased the deep rich tones of chocolate and caramels mixed with brilliant hues of cayenne orange, amethyst purple and navy blue.

I was most drawn to the fab luxe cape in caramel tone of woven sable that felt as soft on the inside of the cashmere lining as the outside. The interior lining detailing of each coat and wrap was so spectacular that each piece seemed couture in styling and certainly worthy of glamorous divas Elizabeth Taylor and Sophia Loren.

The dress that immediately caught my eye consisted of a full detailed skirt in a palette of pastel pink so lovely I dreamed of twirling in it just as If I were a 4 year old girl showing off her Easter dress. However it was so beautifully styled I could see Carrie Bradshaw running across a bridge in Paris dawning the dreamy style.

Being a lover of vintage handbags and train cases, I must mention the femme fatale style of the Russian broadtail retro styled train jewelry and cosmetic case. Again, the leather interior was so magnificently designed, I would want to leave it open in my closet so I could see the stunning craftsmanship.

When speaking of luxury furs and femme fetals, one often conjures an image of Marilyn Monroe with her sultry pin up style. With a short walk down the cobblestone streets of Vail Village toMasterGallery you will find DeVon Stanfeld's version of Cozy Marilyn popping off the wall. Wearing a fur and diamonds, the prexy glass image of Marilyn is stuffed with feathers, almost bringing the icon to life.

When asked about his Marilyn pieces DeVon stated, " I believe in magic still, it's a little bit of magic." In choosing style icons Marilyn and Audrey Hepburn as the focus of his pieces, he hits a cord in all women.

Luxury fashion brands and artists alike are blurring the lines between art and fashion. When watching Breakfast at Tiffany's for the umpteenth time, I was mesmerized by Audrey's timeless style. DeVon captured that indelible image on plexiglass with alternating Tiffany and white boxes creating a backdrop.

Using Swarovski crystals as Marilyn's diamonds and Audrey's rose; he captures a moment in time and a moment of the subject not seen in a flat image. DeVon wants to uplift, make people think and become aware of their environment and surroundings. By layering images, his pieces are constantly evolving.

Director of Masters Gallery, Rayla Kundolf, caters to an international clientele, understanding their love of pop art in Vail. DeVon, who ironically resides in his own ski country, Park City, Utah is a unabashed artist pushing the envelope in his pieces focusing on heroes.

He said he believes there is a hero in all of us that needs to come out, so his art is a call to be a hero. I suspect he is referencing his art showcasing images of Superman and Spiderman but as a fashion lover, I can inequitably state that Audrey is my hero.