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Currently based in London Marie-Louise Haselberg originally carved a niche for herself designing window displays for Tiffany & Co, Garrards and Stewart Weitzman in New York. Film and TV soon beckoned where she worked on sets and costumes for various productions ranging from Channel 4 films to the Welsh National Opera.

However, fashion was always her first love and she has forged ahead in this field. She has shot for publications such as V magazine, Italian Amica, French Gloss, Vision China, Oyster, Sunday Times Style, The Saturday Times, 125 magazine, Arise, Drama , Glass magazine and Vanity Fair to her credit and spent two years at The Financial Times ‘How to Spend It’ magazine.

She was Editor-in Chief of theglassmagazine.com from November 2009-May 2012.

@ marie(at)mlvh.co.uk

☎ +44(0)7976763033

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A Night Amongst The Stars

A Night Amongst The Stars

Glass looks at the high-voltage eroticism of Loris Azzaro in the new tome by Assouline

Showers of sequins, exuberant feathers, embroidered transparencies stretched across a lithe frame, slashes in silk jersey so high they should have been illegal and long languid looks on some of the most sensual sirens of the day – this was Paris of the 70s. And this was the time of Loris Azzaro, the fashion designer who brought sex to couture. A charming and bewitching figure, his aim was to dress women so that men would undress them. He was satisfied with a creation, “if a woman wants to put it on and a man wants to take it off”.

This charming couturier’s life and times have been brought together to stunning effect by the publisher Assouline. The history of the brand is described by the renowned fashion historian Jéromine Savignon and he takes us through the designer’s life – from his humble upbringing in Tunis, his love of opera and his life-changing meeting with his beautiful wife, Michelle Carsy, to his triumphant reign as the couturier to the stars.

Azzaro and his wife arrived in Paris following the summer of 1962, at a time when Paris was experiencing a rebirth. They moved into a small workshop just a few steps away from one of the trendiest boutiques of the time – Dorothee. He soon started making jewelled accessories to great success.

The leap from trinkets to bejewelled gowns for the stars was quick and effortless. No years of struggling for Azzaro. In 1966, his charm and determination brought him, his wife and Reinhard Luthier (his partner in design who had come from Dior) to a new studio where he started to create the metallic gold, sheer and fluid creations fit for modern, sensual, nocturnal nymphs.

This was his dream – to envisage, to create the boldness of the night. The dusky glamour that bewitches and enthrals everyone and captivates the ones lucky enough to be able to buy into the fantasy.

Azzaro’s dresses were indeed fantasy, wildly distinctive and engaging, one could imagine “in them something might happen” according to International Herald Tribune fashion columnist Hebe Dorsey. In one of his dresses one defintively hoped something would.

His fans were notable and the list long – Elizabeth Taylor, Claudia Cardinale, Maria Callas, Princess Paola of Belgium. His clothes dripped sensuality, but they also dripped innovation and this is what kept his admirers continuously succumbing to his charms. Gold fibres were threaded, beads and drops fashioned out of liquid polyester, he brought couture and chemistry together to dazzling effect.

These incredible pieces were photographed by the great and good of the time and the book seduces the reader with such wonderful images by Guy Bourdin, Tony Kent and Helmut Newton.

Amazonian beauties in hyper-sophisticated night-time glamour – an ideal much lauded in 70s Paris. However beyond the hype of the time, Azzaro has a place in design history, for he understood the essential ingredient of dress; passion and the desire to seduce. it’s what every woman wants in her wardrobe.

As Loris Azzaro simply states, “I have always sold eroticism in my dresses and I think, if a woman is beautiful, good for her, but if we can make her provocative, good for me.”

-This post originally appeared on glassmagazine

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Art as Life

Art as Life

Glass plays (Bau) haus at the Barbican’s astounding exhibition examining the driving force behind modernism

It has been 40 years since a Bauhaus exhibition has been on show in the UK and its opening at the Barbican cannot have been more timely.The year 2012 means the Olympics to Britain and the spirit of unity which lies at the heart of these historical games bears many similarities to  the most defining  art and design school of the modern age.

From its avant-garde arts and crafts origins in Weimar, Germany, the school expanded its vision to embrace the concept of learning by unifying technology and art. In the aftermath of the second world war, it became a driving force for modernity, seeking  to change society through experimentation and creativity to find a new way  of living.

The exhibition traces the school’s history –  from its original founder, architect Walter Gropius in Weimar in 1919 – and charts its move from its expressionist-influenced roots to the embrace of its art and industry focus. The school moved to Dessau in 1925 under the directorship of Gropius and then Hannes Meyer and then briefly to Berlin, led by Mies van der Rohe, where it was forced to close in 1933 due to pressure from the National  Socialist Party.

The school was home to many – Wassily Kandinsky, Paul Klee, Josef Albers, Lazlo Moholy-Nagy, Lena Meyer-Bergner to name but a few –  and the exhibition, as well as taking us on an impressive and awe-inspiring journey through the wealth of work created by students and teachers alike, also seeks to show everyday life at the school, displaying party and festival invitations, handmade gifts and costumes created especially for celebrations.Teachers and students worked and socialised together, this creative ideal was captured in black and white photographs which are woven into the exhibition.

Rare contributions to this extensive and wide-ranging exhibition are unparalleled – with works provided by Bauhaus-Archiv Berlin as well as Centre Georges Pompidou, the Museum of Modern Art New York, Zentrum Paul Klee, the Josef and Anni Albers Foundation alongside more personal contributions from the artists’ families.

In 2013, it will be 80 years since this revolutionary school as forced to close – its famous sons and daughters fleeing to Paris, London and New York, where they continued to practise the ideals of Bauhaus and pave the way for art, modernity and industry. Its physical  life was relatively short, but the revolutionary ideals of the school will continue to exert a huge influence over all areas of life, for many more years to come.

-This post originally appeared on glassmagazine

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Wedding Belle

Wedding Belle

Sergio Rossi are turning our (wedding) slippered feet into something entirely more sexy

Me and weddings don’t mix. Firstly there’s the travel. The current fashion is for the entire party to move en mass to more sunnier climes than our rain-sodden shores can provide. This becomes a “mini break”, a horrific Bridget Jones invention with the added bonus of opposing bridal families – let’s face it, they don’t always get on – and drunken old friends, whose escape to the sun suddenly reignites grudges long forgotten – or buried at least – and what ensues is only a slightly more glamorous version of the Jeremy Kyle Show. Case in point: a beautiful old market town in the South of France was left permanently scarred by the street brawling and caterwauling – I am not exaggerating – of two girlfriends over a borrowed and mislaid Chanel handbag.

Then there are my own wedding malfunctions. Do not turn up to  a French Chateau in a scarlet red dress and then sit next  to the most intoxicated and verbose guest (female again)  at the wedding dinner. Do not humour said guest as their bravado – never normally lacking – will become death-defying  and  they will loudly and repeatedly heckle the father of the groom’s speech for being  too boring. Drunken football-style chants at a wedding do not normally go down well.

Neither should you wear a billowing slash-fronted dress for a June wedding in the South of France. After turning up half an hour late to the proceedings with the best man – and therefore holding up the entire ceremony – the seasonal “mistral”, or rogue gale force winds as I’d like to call them – whipped my dress up into a frenzy and exposed my two best friends to the entire party. Well, if you’re going to be late, you might as well make an entrance.

It seems all my misadventures happened on French soil, so I must look to the Italians for wedding salvation. It may surprise you that I am not yet married – I know it’s insane, when you know this much about me and my friends, can you imagine anyone not wanting to spend the rest of their life with me – but if I were to be betrothed, the incredible Francesco Russo, Creative Director at Sergio Rossi would dress my feet for this very special day.

The  purveyors of uber-luxurious footwear have brought their own special brand of glamour to a new bridal collection. Inlaid with a blue Swarovski crystal in the in-step, whether it be strappy flats for a beach wedding, vertiginous heels or death defying lattice-work boots to strut down the aisle in, the modern woman’s Cinderella slipper-maker has something to enchant every blushing bride.

So come on, who would like to make my Sergio Rossi-clad dreams come true, at least for one day?

Oh and if you had to ask, of course all my friends are coming.

-This post originally appeared on glassmagazine

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