Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Fall ’13: Backstage at Mara Hoffman

February 9, 2013 • Fashion Blog, Fashion Shows, New York Fashion Week Fall '13

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There’s no question why Mara Hoffman’s shows are always a genuinely good time. Having first met the designer at her Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Fall 2011 presentation, luminous and about eight months pregnant, I could immediately tell the designer’s energy for her craft was infectious. Now two years later, Hoffman’s line — once primarily swimwear and  cover—ups — has evolved into a luxurious, seasonally versatile line brimming with the zesty color palette and explosive patterns of a tropical island getaway. So one could imagine that same sense of energy is more than palpable backstage before the big show.

I had the disctint pleasure of meeting Nick Irwin, lead stylist for Catwalk by TIGI who helped to create the look for the Mara Hoffman Fall 2103 runway show. Irwin told us the inspiration for his hair look for the show was pulled from the mystic gypsy theme of the collection, yet he wanted it to be more refined and econceptual. He noted the clothes this season looked more luxurious so he wanted to channel that into the hair as well. He started with a simple middle part and clipped the hair over the shoulders and down the back. Then the fun part: Irwin had chosen hair jewelry to clip over the back of ears and connect over the back of the curtain of hair to create an exotic and ethnic look. He said he really wanted to highlight the transition of the hair being straighter on top to the twisted finger curls at the top.

As for the curls, Irwin said some of the curls required extensions so that the hair would hang down to about the middle of the back. Then using Catwalk Curlesque Strong Mousse, which he referenced as like an old 80’s style mousse, he twisted the hair into about half a dozen spirals working from the shoulder to the middle on each side. He twisted the spirals around his fingers then secured them with clips to set the curl. Another key product he recommended for anyone to try this look at home is the Session Series Styling Cream, which you can apply onto the hair when it’s dry and do a quick cool blow dry to make the hair shiny and manageable, without looking greasy. Then, to top it all off, Irwin said he would use a little Your Highness Weightless Shine Spray to sleek it up and banish any remaining frizz.

Over in makeup with Maybelline New York, key artist Charlotte Willer wanted to play up the bohemian prints and gypsy-fab accessories with both her makeup look and the manicure. Willer wanted to hone in on a graphic winged liner that made the eyes alluring and really pop. She used the Eye Studio Master Drama Cream Liner in Midnight Master, lining the top and inside of the lower eye. It continued up and out to create the strong, graphic look. Eye Studio Master Duo Thin Thick Glossy Liner in Navy Gleam was then added to provide a slight hint of color and shine on top.

One the face, Willer used Fit Me! Foundation was applied to create a clean look and the face was then contoured with Fit Me! Powder. For the lips, Baby Lips in Quenched was applied as a base for lips, followed with Color Sensational in Totally Toffee and topped off with Color Whisper by Color Sensational in Bare to be Bold. As for the manicure, also by Maybelline New York, the inspiration was the lunula half moon which lead manicurist Honey created with Color Show Nail Lacquer in Onyx Rush for the black base. She then created a slight moon shape near the tip of the nail with Impeccable Greys and Petal to the Metal. Thank you again to Mara Hoffman, Nick Irwin of Catwalk by TIGI and Charlotte Willer of Maybelline New York for sharing their amazing styles with us!

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