If you step into the studio of any major fashion designer, you'll probably find yourself distracted from the clothes because you'll be checking out the design assistants. While it's certainly not required that employees should be attractive, hiply-coiffed, skinny, and obsessively stylish, it's not hard to pick out someone who "works in fashion" from the crowd. But today's New York Observer points out a growing trend - the "design bears." Increasingly, bearded, beefy, plaid-loving gay men are joining the ranks of the slim and effete in the world of fashion design. The article identifies Rob Seroka at RSRV, Robert Tagliapietra of Costello Tagliapietra, and stylist/designer Patrik Rzepski (who works with Sienna Miller and Maggie Gyllenhaal) as fashion "design bears," pointing out that their lumberjack-inspired personal style and appearance doesn't stand in the way of creating delicate and dainty womenswear designs. We think this is great, but we also wonder if the fashion world is as accepting of women who don't conform to the typical tall/thin/impeccably chic mold. At least now we know why everyone wears plaid this season! --ALISON COOL
Phil Oh and Susie Lau on Their Urban Outfitters Collection Inspired by Gummy Bear Shots and Tacos...Sort Of
If there are two superbloggers easier to love than Phil Oh and Susie Lau, I haven't met them. The proprietors behind Streetpeeper and Style Bubble have each been at the blogging thing for more than half a decade, yet manage to remain far away from the hoopla. And that's probably because Oh, a photographer/writer (who shoots for Vogue.com, amongst others), and Lau, a stylist/writer (who has written for Dazed & Confused and Elle UK, amongst others), have talents far beyond uploading a post on Wordpress. Their most recent collaboration is an expression of their oft-overlapping personal styles and yen for travel: a small collection for Urban Outfitters, Oh, Bubble!, inspired by a whirlwind trip around the world. With Oh in Brooklyn and Lau in London, we talked this morning via email about the project. And other stuff. Like Tokyo Disneyland. And gummy bear jello shots. And Justin Bieber. Because there's way more to these two than fashion.