What’s next for Neiman Marcus and Bergdorf Goodman

Neiman Marcus filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy on Thursday, in hopes of charting a new path forward at a time of significant disruption for fashion retail.

The luxury department-store group, which also operates Bergdorf Goodman and the e-commerce platform MyTheresa.com, has struggled in recent years under more than $5 billion in debt stemming from leveraged buyouts in 2005 and 2013. Despite current temporary store closures and widespread economic uncertainty, the company says it plans to exit bankruptcy in the fall stronger and more financially stable than when it went in.

The news capped off a week of bankruptcy announcements from major players in fashion retail, with J.Crew Group Inc. and Aldo Group Inc. likewise seeking court protection. Like Neiman, they were already facing financial challenges before Covid-19 hit and the stress became insurmountable.

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Miss South Africa Is 2019 Miss Universe

By Armando

Miss South Africa, Zozibini Tunzi, was crowned Miss Universe.
Photo: Armando (aiphotoimaging.com

Zozibini Tunzi was crowned as the new Miss Universe after impressing the judges on her final question and answer portion, as well as her beauty and grace during the swimsuit and evening gown competitions. Miss Mexico and Miss Puerto Rico were the two runners-up.

“I grew up in a world where a woman who looks like me, with my color skin, and my kind of hair is not considered beautiful,” Tunzi said on Sunday. “I think it is time that stops today. I want children to look at my face and I want them to see their face reflected in mine.”

Tunzi is an activist against gender violence. According to the Miss Universe organization, she is a “proud advocate for natural beauty and encourages women to love themselves the way they are.”

During final question and answer portion, Zozibini was asked about what we should teach today’s young girls, to which she replied: “I think the most important thing we should be teaching young girls today is leadership. It’s something that has been lacking in young girls and women for a very long time, not because we don’t want to, but because of what society has labelled women to be,” she said.

“I think we are the most powerful beings on the world, and that we should be given every opportunity. And that is what we should be teaching these young girls, to take up space, Tunzi added”

The event was held on Sunday at Tyler Perry Studios in Atlanta. During the press conference, Tunzi added that it was “very special” to win the crown at the major studio complex owned by an African-American.

Miss Universe 2019 Pre-Show Arrivals
Photos: Armando (aiphotoimaging.com)


Miss Universe 2019 Press Junket

By Armando

Miss Iceland at 2019 Miss Universe press junket

Miss Universe 2019 contestants took time out early morning on Thursday to meet with the press at the Marriott Marquis in Atlanta, Georgia.

Ahead of this Sunday’s pageant finals, the contestants answered questions from the media during the early morning event.

Although almost everyone made a great impression, some of the standouts (from talking to the press in attendance) include Miss Iceland, Miss South Africa, Miss Puerto Rico and Miss Vietnam. Towards the end of the event, reining Miss Universe Catriona Gray arrived and fielded questions from the press.

Photo: Armando (aiphotoimaging.com)

The day also featured the unveiling of a new Miss Universe crown by luxury jeweler and new crown sponsor Mouawad. The crown was unveiled by Mouawad co-guardian Pascal Mouawad, Miss Universe Organization President Paula Shugart, along with current pageant titleholder Catriona Elis Gray.

Delegates from 90 countries and territories is set to compete for this year’s Miss Universe beauty pageant. Up next for the candidates will be the preliminary competition that’s set to be held on Friday, December 6. Miss Universe Catriona Gray is also set to appear in the Atlanta Christmas Parade on Saturday, Dec. 7.

Miss Universe 2019 will be held this Sunday December 8, 2019 at the Tyler Perry Studios in Atlanta, Georgia and will air live at 7/6c on FOX. Steve Harvey is set to return as host.

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Momentum Pictures Announce NEKROTRONIC With Monica Bellucci

Momentum Pictures has announce the release date for NEKROTRONIC, the latest comedy, horror, sci-fi starring Monica Bellucci (The Matrix: Reloaded, Mozart in the Jungle) and David Wenham (The Lord of the Rings).

The film is set for release on select theaters, VOD and digital HD on August 9, 2019.

Directed by Kiah Roache-Turner (Wyrmwood: Road of the Dead) from a script written by Kiah Roache-Turner, Tristan Roache-Turner (Wyrmwood: Road of the Dead), the film co-stars Ben O’Toole (Hacksaw Ridge, The Water Diviner), Caroline Ford (Amazon’s Carnival Row, TV’s Once Upon a Time), Tess Haubrich (The Wolverine, Alien: Covenant), and Epine Bob Savea.

Here’s the film’s official synopsis
Howard North, a down on his luck sewage worker, gets dragged into a global conflict between the Nekromancers, a family of badass demon hunters, and Finnegan (Monica Bellucci) – an evil demon who absorbs people’s souls to increase her power. When Howard finds out the truth behind Finnegan’s past and her dark plans for the future, he teams up with his new friends to discover he is the ultimate Nekromancer, the only one with the power to defeat her and save the world.


Miss Kansas Is 2018 Miss Teen USA

By Armando

Miss Kansas Teen Hailey Colborn is crowned Miss Teen USA 2018

17-year-old Hailey Colborn from Kansas has been crowned Miss Teen USA, held last night at Hirsch Coliseum in Shreveport-Bossier, Louisiana.

A total of 51 contestants from 50 states and the District of Columbia competed for the crown, which was later narrowed down to top 15 and top 10. In addition to Miss Kansas, rounding out the top 5 were Miss Illinois Teen Sydni-Dion Bennett, Miss Colorado Teen Chloe Zambrano, Miss South Carolina Teen Kirby Elizabeth Self and Miss North Carolina Teen Kaaviya Sambasivam. Miss Congeniality award went to Kennedy Cromeens of Alabama.

Before the show started, Miss Teen USA 2017 Sophia Dominguez-Heithoff gave a heartfelt speech about the Santa Fe High School shooting which happened earlier in the day.

The question and answer portion had an interesting twist this year: to celebrate its 35th anniversary, the top 5 contestants were asked questions that were posed to past winners. The contestants also competed in active wear and in evening gown.

Meanwhile, Miss USA 2018 is set to take lace on Monday, May 21, 2018 at the Hirsch Memorial Coliseum in Shreveport, Louisiana, making it the first time that Miss Teen USA and Miss Teen USA are held concurrently. Miss USA 2018 will be hosted by Vanessa and Nick Lachey.

The 2018 Miss Teen USA was hosted by Cecilio Asuncion and Erin Lim. See some of the photos from the pageant below.

Photos by: aiphotoimaging.com


Lacoste New Collection Replaces Iconic Logo With Endanged Species

By Creative Media Times


French clothing company Lacoste is temporarily dropping its iconic logo to showcase 10 endangered species in a limited edition line of its polo shirt. “The logo has left the polo! @Lacoste’s famous croc makes way to help save some of the world’s most threatened species,” the company announced on its Twitter account. The polo shirts can be purchased through the company’s website and will retail for $185.

Those endangered animals consist of the Vaquita dolphin, Northern sportive lemur, Burmese roofed turtle, Javan rhino, Cao vit gibbon, California condor, Kakapo parrot, Sumatran tiger, the Saola, and the Anegada ground iguana. The logos will use the same embroidery styling that has been an iconic for the brand’s crocodile.

The effort is the beginning of the Lacoste’s three-year partnership with Paris agency BETC together with the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) and its Save Our Species (SOS) campaign.

According to the campaign’s website saveourspecies.org and lacoste.com regarding the production of the shirts, the number produced in each series corresponds to the remaining population sizes in the wild as estimated by IUCN species experts. This means only 450 Iguana shirts will be available, 350 featuring the Sumatran tiger, and a measly 40 shirts with the Burmese Roofed Turtle.

Lacoste was founded in 1933 by tennis player French tennis player and André Gillier. The company produced tennis shirts with the now iconic crocodile logo embroidered on the chest, a reference to Lacoste nickname “the Crocodile.”


2018 New York Couture Fashion Week

By Armando

Fall 2018 Collections, celebrated in two days of outstanding fashion and talented designers from across the globe which concluded on Saturday in spectacular style.

Couture New York Fashion Week Fall 2018 was held on on Friday, February 9 and Saturday, February 10 in New York. All of the shows were held on Crowne Plaza Times Square Manhattan, Broadway.

The Fall 2018 Collections featured collections from around the globe including Elcy Cortorreal, Funari, Reshmi Nair, Maria Elena Couture, Teona Margvelashvili and Jaba Kukuladze, Alexandra Popescu-York, Nailuj Villarroel, Tonni 86, Alessia Siena and collections from producer Andres Aquino.

The shows also featured performances from Olga Alexandrova, Rodney Talley, Benedetta Orsi, Jared Hanrahan and Parker Matthews.

Couture Fashion Week was founded in 2005 by Andres Aquino and presents a series of couture and luxury fashion shows in New York City, Cannes and other selected cities.

Here’s some of the highlights of the shows.
New York Couture Fashion Week
Crowne Plaza Times Square Manhattan, Broadway


MTV VMAs 2017: At The Red Carpet

Red carpet arrivals @ the Forum in Inglewood, California, for the 2017 MTV Video Music Awards. 

Katy Perry
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Photographer Armando


Gigi Hadid, Appropriation or Progress?

By: Andrew Van Wilpe

The American fashion model, Gigi Hadid has come under some scrutiny, in recent days, following the release of the cover of Vogue Arabia’s first edition. In the black and white cover photo, the model sported a beaded veil, bare shouldered. Inside the magazine there is another photo of Gigi dressed in a more traditional looking, hot pink and fuchsia hijab.

Although, Gigi is of Palestinian decent, coming from her father’s side, she is not of the Muslim faith. The critics accuse this 21-year-old model and Vogue of religious appropriation. Her critics are upset because they believe Gigi and Vogue are glamourizing something that other women are criticized for. One critic tweeted, “So Gigi is getting praised for wearing a Hijab bc “fashion” while women who actually wear Hijab are attacked, shamed, and threatened?”

The question from most of the critics is, “why Vogue did not choose an actual Muslim model for this cover?” It seems the issue is more about representation. Critics believe Vogue should have used a Muslim model if they wanted to avoid this controversy and wanted to promote inclusion.
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New York: Couture Fashion Week – Fall 2017 Collections

By Armando

New York, NY—February 14th, 2017 – Couture New York Fashion Week began on Friday, February 10 and run throughout the weekend. All of the shows were held on Crowne Plaza Times Square Manhattan, Broadway, NY.

The Fall 2017 Collections featured collections from around the globe including Belinda Bullshoe, Cory Tran, Laura Moss, Rose Sharifi, Farah Sugar, Paulina Canas, Luis Machicao, Diana Mahrach, Meggie Hadiyanto, Mety Choa, Olga Alicea & Hector Musse, Bella Fashion Designs, Lourdes Atencio, Vanny Tousignant, Ruchika Kabra, Alexandra Popescu, Reuden Banks, Houda El Fechka Eddiouanne, and Andres Aquino who closed the runway shows on Saturday night.

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