Today’s Fashion Headlines. March 30, 2012

March 30, 2012 • Fashion, Fashion Blog

Russell Simmons Plans Yoga Brand

Russell Simmons is planning on getting in the yoga activewear field by starting a new lifestyle brand called ‘Tantris‘. Simmons Design Group, has inked a multiyear licensing deal with Gaiia Enterprises Global Ltd. — owned by Great Joy Trading Ltd. — to develop Tantris, which will include categories such as women’s and men’s activewear, meditation beads, yoga mats, pillows and scented candles. Once the collection is carried in 300 to 400 department stores, specialty stores, health clubs and spas, Simmons’ focus will turn to opening freestanding Tantris stores, yoga studios, juice bars and even a vegan restaurant.

The activewear will be shown to stores later next month, with wholesale prices ranging from $16 to $59 for women’s styles and $22 to $68 for the men’s jacket. Tantris, which will launch an e-commerce site in September, plans to use some of the proceeds from sales of its activewear to offer scholarships to train aspiring yogis.

Original Penguin to Sell Women’s Collection

Original Penguin by Munsingwear, traditionally known as more of a guy’s brand, is now courting the girlfriends, too. While the brand always had a smattering of women’s wear in the past, the mix never extended beyond a few basics and lacked a distinct fashion point of view to set it apart from other contemporary lines. The Perry Ellis International-owned brand is hoping to change that with a full women’s collection, beginning with fall, which it unveiled at a preview at its SoHo boutique in New York on Wednesday morning.

There are no immediate plans to wholesale the collection; instead, the retail strategy will focus on the brand’s 48 freestanding stores, 18 of which are in the U.S. “We feel that launching this women’s collection in our stores gives us the opportunity to show and merchandise it as we see it, as a full collection,” said Ann Payne, creative director and senior vice president, design and merchandising, who didn’t disclose sales projections. Retail price points for the dresses range from $125 to $189; outerwear from $198 to $298; sweaters from $89 to $110, and skirts from $98 to $110.

Perfumer Found Guilty of Racial Slurs

A French court on Thursday found perfumer Jean-Paul Guerlain guilty of uttering a racial slur during an interview on French television and sentenced him to a fine of $8,000 at current exchange. The criminal court in Paris also ordered Guerlain to pay combined damages and costs of $5,370 to each of the three antiracism groups that were associated with the case as civil plaintiffs. In an interview with public television station France 2 in October 2010, Guerlain used a derogatory French word to describe blacks in describing how hard he worked to create the famous Samsara fragrance, prompting civil rights groups to call for a consumer boycott of Guerlain products.

The cosmetics company issued a statement at the time, saying the perfumer’s comments were “intolerable” and went against the “culture, values and ethics practiced by the enterprise, which promotes the diversity of talents of all origins.” “These remarks were common in my day, and thankfully they no longer are,” he said, according to a court transcript of the hearing. Guerlain apologized to the black community for his remarks, saying: “I am anything but racist.”

– Taneisha Jordan

Source & Photo: WWD

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