Conversations in Mode

by Marcela Ortiz-Rubio, Fashion Publishing

Fashion BookEveryone loves a makeover, which is why Phaidon Press’ The Fashion Book has been modernized. With 72 new entries ready to spruce up its interior (totaling 500 entries), it’s no wonder the tome has been baptized by Vogue as the fashion bible, not an easy feat I imagine.

To celebrate its release, Topshop hosted a talk on Thursday, October 10 with famous designer Vera Wang, fashion icon Iris Apfel, and’s editor Dirk Standen, and was wonderfully moderated by Parson’s Fashion Dean, Simon Collins. A complete battalion from the industry allowed me, as well as other fashion inamoratos, to listen in on an interesting conversation covering multiple industry-related topics.

The positive vibe emanating from Iris really put me and others in a good mood, especially when she remarked that creative individuals should take their inspiration out of being alive… “Keep your eyes open, your ears open and just live, that will make you a success in this world”. How asserted! I considered this one of the highlights in the night’s phrases. I sometimes get caught up in a whirlwind of tasks and forget to relish in the minute details that surround me, especially in New York City.

photoAs the night and the conversation evolved, and the Internet became the specimen being examined by the fashion posse, Vera revealed she had seen a lot of change in this area since she is 64 years old… 64! I heard a gasp ripple through the listeners as they gathered this information, because even with her in front of us it was impossible to guess her age. Not only does she look physically young, but her cheery and carefree personality allowed me, and I assume others, to relate to her regardless of the generation gap. Conceiving how each day technology is boosting in caliber, and age is not an obstacle anymore, I found it alluring when Iris revealed she only used her phone to make and receive calls. Period.

This same topic evolved to discuss how not many bloggers are featured in the newfound version of the book, which I found worthy of note. I realized that we are yet in a pace of evolution, and the new technologies and media offer an extensive array of opportunities to break into. Fellow students and I are living in an era where not much is defined in the area of technology, and I find this fascinating: multiple directions we can take, but still in the step of innovation…

With my champagne flute empty and the evening’s discussion about to conclude, I headed over to the counter to purchase ‘the fashion bible’. After quickly flipping through it, I felt a jolt when I saw Parsons adorning one of the pages and relished in the fact that it has “trained some of the most prestigious names in fashion”.  I left the store with a limited edition print signed by Mats Gustafson (who created the artwork for the cover), an exclusive tote bag, and a whirlwind of opinions, because in the words of Dean Collins, “Fashion isn’t just clothes, it’s life”.