Category Archives: Press

FIRST ROUND OF 2010 ACE AWARDS HONOREES

ACCESSORIES COUNCIL ANNOUNCES

FIRST ROUND OF 2010 ACE AWARDS HONOREES

May 20, 2010 New York- The Accessories Council is excited to announce its first round of honorees for the 2010 Accessories Council Excellence (ACE) Awards Gala, highlighting individuals and brands that have made a significant contribution to the accessories industry.  The 2010 ACE Awards are scheduled to be held on Monday November 1st at Cipriani 42nd Street in midtown New York.

The ACE Awards were created in 1995 to pay homage to those individuals and groups that have made great strides in raising the awareness of the accessories industry. The purpose of the awards is to celebrate those who have had a positive impact on accessory consumption during the prior year.   Awards are given to designers, retailers, journalists, celebrities and emerging companies.

Honorees are nominated and voted upon by their peers in the accessory industry, retailers, the Accessories Council Board of Directors and the fashion press. Honorees are announced in advance of the event which takes place annually.

“This year’s ACE Awards nominees represent some of the best and most influential brands and people in the accessories industry,” remarked Accessories Council President Karen Giberson. “We are looking forward to a spectacular event in November and will be releasing the rest of the nominees later this year.”

A partial list of 2010 ACE Awards Gala honorees are listed below:

Rachel Roy

Alber Elbaz

Additional nominees will be announced in the fall 2010.

Lauren Bush - Feed Project

Tickets and tables to the 2010 ACE Awards Gala are currently available for $1,000 per person or $10,000 for a table of ten for Accessories Council members ($1,200 pp and $12,000 per table for non-members).  Tickets can be purchased by calling 212.947.1135 Accessories Council or info@accessoriescouncil.org

Kim Hastreiter

About the Accessories Council

The Accessories Council is a not-for-profit, national advocacy organization established in 1995. Our mission is to stimulate consumer awareness and demand for fashion accessory products. We serve the industry globally which generates over $30 billion dollars annually in the United States alone.

Over the past 5 years, membership has grown to include over 150 corporations representing the world’s leading brand names, designers, publications, retailers and associated providers for the accessories, eyewear and footwear industries.

Press Contact: Jesse Parker Stowell, FULL PICTURE, 212.995.2384 jstowell@fullpic.com

Jamie Frankenberg, FULL PICTURE, 212.995.2857 jfrankenberg@fullpic.com

Tweet This – Father’s Day with Robert Verdi

Robert Verdi hosted another ‘Tweet This’ Father’s Day gift ideas party at his LUXE Laboratory in Manhattan and invited 40 of New York’s top bloggers including our very own Accessories Council member Anne Agoren from izzi bag, who was  in the final 6  of the Shorty Award nominations of Twitter back  in March.

Robert Verdi & Anne Agoren -izzi bag

The first of the gift ideas was for ‘The Inspired Dad’ a John Bartlett – Tiny Tim Tee, John Bartlett found his Muse at North Shore Animal League in the form of Tiny Tim, a 3 legged dog he rescued and who has now become his design inspiration & company logo. John now donates a percentage of proceeds to the NSAL so who better to benefit from Father’s Day than man’s best friend. The Tees retail at $40.

John Bartlett Tees

The Modern Dad gift idea was  Jonathan Adler Pop Candle. There are 3 fresh garden scents from Tomato leaves, Cilantro and Grapefruit. The votives double up as a drinking glass when the candle is finished. Retail value is $38

Jonathan Adler Candle

The Classic Dad gift idea was a wonderful smelling fragrance from Kenneth Cole called Vintage Black, it retails at $70 but is worth every cent. It is available right now in Macys New York. I think the fragrance has the perfect balance for every  dad with its citrus woody blends effervescent, masculine woods and soft skin musks.

Kenneth Cole Vintage Black

For dad on the go Robert’s suggestion was New Vaseline for MEN. The line is quick absorbing, non greasy body and face lotions that fortifies skin. So any dad is going to look good and smell great and at a cost of $15 this is a really good deal to consider if you are struggling for a gift idea.

The Professional Dad is a difficult one you might think, but Robert came up with the suggestion of giving him an ‘on the go grooming experience’ John Allan’s renowned destinations that combine the atmosphere of a private club with a full grooming outpost for men. John Allan’s treatment can take just 15 minutes, includes a head massage, shampoo / conditioning treatment, haircut and manicure. To finish it all off you can even get a shoe shine and a beverage. If you decide to get a gift voucher for dad then you will get a guy-tested airline approved travel pack  thrown in, so at $65 this is a double gift for any dad.

John Allan's Travel Kit

To go hand in hand with the above gift is the Jet-setting dad gift suggestion the Coach DOPP Kit, the transatlantic travel kit is a travel kit no dad would want to be without. The lovely leather bag can house all dad’s essential for the bathroom whilst travelling and at only $128 it is an absolute steal.

Coach Dopp Kit

Now the Savvy Dad will need a Rowenta Travel Iron, because Mom is not with him on a business trip he can make sure he still looks chic and crisp to go to his meetings. The iron is lightweight at only 1.65lbs and is totally compact folding to just 7.8″. The gift will cost you only $40 and is available at their website.

Rowenta First Class Travel Iron

The Stylish Dad has to have this next gift idea and I can actually see Robert Verdi wearing these HUGO BOSS Aviator Sunglasses, they only just hit the stores so get on their website to find a store near you. I think the sun glasses are very flattering and I understand that dad can change the lens if he wants to put his prescription glasses inside. The lenses are polarized that reduce glare, so great for driving or for the dad that loves water sports. An absolute steal at $148

Hugo Boss Aviator Sun Glasses

Dapper Dad is going to be in heaven if you can push your budget to £180 as Joseph Abboud suits at JCPenney are really so chic and totally affordable.The 2 button front jacket has 6 pockets, styling to perfection any upto date Dad. I think this is the gift for my dad,  every time he looks down at his suit he will think of me.

Joseph Abboud Suit for JCPenney

Young at Heart Dad has to have these Jan Leslie skull & cross bone cuff links, they are only $115 and I really think they are a fun gift, Jan Leslie’s whimsical designs let his personality and sense of humor shine through. They will look great with a chic suit for the office or just with a crisp shirt and jeans for the casual look.

Skull & Cross Bones Cuff Links

Tasteful Dad’s gift suggestion from Robert Verdi was the Cole Haan Seton Tuxedo Wallet, in rich calf skin leather will make any dad proud to carry this wallet. It can hold 4 slide pockets and one currency sleeve, it is really slim and can fit into dads pocket and is a steal at $75.

Cole Haan Wallet

Sleek Dad’s need to be kept on time and the Skagen Watch is a perfect memorable gift at a price point that will not break the bank at only $145. It is made of really high quality materials and is very sleek and clean looking available in a store near you.

Skagen Watch

DIY dad’s are really hard to find a gift for and this is perfect Stoner Solutions invisible glass cleaner. His car will be the best kept in the neighborhood and I know my dad likes to always get those Grand Children finger marks off his windows, with one swipe the kit removes effortlessly oil, dirt, smudges, pollen, sap and bugs. Just spray on, leave and wipe would could be any easier. The kit is $30 so go to the website and order online today.

Gourmand Dad’s need the McClures Pickles to make the perfect Bloody Mary at $10 we can all afford to throw this into the mix! It really is not for the faint hearted but goes great with a Sunday BBQ. Just add to Vodka stir and drink, what can be better? check out their website.

The Good Times Dad certainly needs the KLUCKR download app for his mobile iPhone, so never mind where he is at the game on his way home late one night but he can always find the Chicken wings. The great thing it is free.

The last gift idea is for the Handy Dad and I never saw so many tools in such a small case.The Leatherman Skeletool is a must for the dad who is always asking mom if she has seen his screwdriver or his pliers! It weighs only 5 ounces and will make any dad into a hero.

Leatherman Skeletool

We all know a C.LILI girl don’t we ?

Worldly and sophisticated yet at ease in any situation

She loves Valentino but also buys TopShop; she reads Baudelaire but occasionally cracks a Dan Brown book; she knows the hotspots in New York, Rome, and Bangkok, but loves to cook for friends at home. She’s just as likely to be found dancing on tables in Mykonos as she is lunching at a corner café with a best friend. She is much like Coralie Charriol, President and Founder of the new luxury handbag line, C.LILI. Coralie has fashioned a line of chic handbags that embrace all of these qualities. She is a mom as well as a fashionable career woman who goes out at night but leads a full life during the day, requiring an accessory that can carry her through it all.
C.LILI bags are fashioned with real leather and luxurious linings, and are as feminine as the women who carry them. Each comes accompanied by a studded leather bracelet with small metal charm that can be worn as a complement to any outfit. Jet-set chic defines the C.LILI aesthetic. The bags can travel with its wearer to a relaxed occasion during the day, yet also accompany her to a beautiful restaurant for dinner; fashion forward and elegant, C.LILI meets the demands of the modern, Twenty-First Century woman. “Stylish career women, party girls, and free-spirited  adventurers— these are all the girls I see with a C.LILI bag on their arm,” says Coralie.
In short, the C.LILI girl is the ultimate high-low lady: well-schooled in the world of luxury but not spoiled or prim. She is adventurous and full of life!

Contact:
Laura Woodard
blue stripe PR
212-245-2220
laura@bluestripepr.com

Aurelia by Coralie Charriol

marielle by Coralie Charriol

LORENA by Coralie Charriol

Anais by Coralie Charriol

http://lastpictures.com/media/charriol/clili1.mov

SOLSTICE SUNGLASS BOUTIQUE CELEBRATES SUMMER

NEW YORK – June 4, 2010 – Get rewarded while you shop this summer! SOLSTICE Sunglass Boutique is celebrating the season with its Summer Solstice promotion, which begins on June 18, 2010 and runs through July 15th. As part of this promotion, shoppers will be rewarded for their sizzling summer purchases in the following ways:

  • Receive a $25 gift card* with a purchase of $125 or more
  • Receive (2) $25 gift cards* with a purchase of $250 or more
  • Receive a pair of Carrera flip-flops or a Shine On beach towel* with the purchase of any pair of Carrera Sunglasses

These fashionable freebies are all the more reason to get beach-ready with a pair of trendy shades. The fashion-forward, trendy Carrera brand is perfect for the season with rockin’ sunglasses that are a favorite of celebrities and consumers, alike.

“Summer Solstice is the perfect opportunity for us to celebrate the upcoming season by treating our loyal customers to rewards,” said Rick Talmage, chief operating officer of SOLSTICE Sunglass Boutique. “The Summer Solstice offers a fun, interactive way to connect with our customers during the peak sunglass season!”

Unlike many other sunglass retailers, SOLSTICE offers a “hands-on” open sell retail format.  Instead of keeping sunglasses behind a counter or under lock and key, customers are encouraged to take control of their sunglass destiny by touching and trying on as many pairs as they like with maximum ease.

- more -

*gift card good through August 31, 2010

Flip-flops and beach towel available while supplies last

Things you may not know about Carrera:

  • CARRERA was originally created as a motorcycle and ski helmet brand in 1956
  • The name was inspired by the legendary Carrera Panamericana road rally which traversed the length of Mexico
  • Over the years the product range has expanded to include ski helmets, sports glasses, optical frames and sunglasses
  • CARRERA is manufactured by Safilo Group, the world’s second largest designer eyewear manufacturer, who acquired the brand in 1996
  • The brand is known for its original on-the-road spirit, dynamic appeal and consistently cutting-edge design
  • CARRERA is a fixture on the music video sets of high-profile artists including Lady Gaga, Alicia Keys, Christina Aguilera, Usher and Rihanna
  • The brand’s new “SHINE ON” campaign depicts the world of “Fast-Laners” – young men and women who are not afraid to live their life to the max, constantly revving the passion accelerator

PRESS RELEASE

SAFILO CONTINUES ITS COMMITMENT AS GLOBAL FRAMES SUPPLIER OF THE SPECIAL OLYMPICS-LIONS CLUB INTERNATIONAL OPENING EYES® VISION CARE PROGRAM

Padua, June 2010 - Safilo Group, leader in the premium eyewear sector, continues its commitment to support Special Olympics, the international sports training and competition program for people with intellectual disabilities that operates in 170 different countries. Founded in 1968 by Eunice Kennedy Shriver, Special Olympics now involves over 3,400,000 athletes (over 3.4 million) with intellectual disabilities in training and sports competitions worldwide.

Special Olympics

Safilo’s involvement with Special Olympics started in 2003 as global frames supplier of the Special Olympics-Lions Clubs International Opening Eyes vision care program. Opening Eyes, part of Special Olympics’ award-winning Healthy Athletes® public health initiative, is the largest program in the world dedicated to providing vision care for people with intellectual disabilities. A large number of athletes have the chance to benefit from the vision screenings, and above all, to receive prescription eyeglasses to correct their sight problems and sunglasses to protect their eyes. The Opening Eyes program also provides sports protective eyewear for athletes that train and compete in contact sports.

The “Opening Eyes” care and prevention program was founded by the American Optometric Association’s Sports Vision Section and formally incorporated into the Special Olympics Healthy Athletes program in 1997. A generous grant from the Lions Clubs International Foundation, the largest service club in the world, formalized a global partnership and enabled the Opening Eyes program to expand internationally.

Special Olympics

Safilo renewed its support for the Special Olympics last year by donating a total of 14,537 optical frames and 9,855 pairs of sunglasses. In addition, Safilo personnel often take an active part in the implementation of the events as volunteers, donating their time and expertise for the benefit of Special Olympics athletes and those with intellectual disabilities.

From the United States to France, from Spain to China, from South Africa to Australia, Special Olympics continually involves a number of athletes in sports events aimed at uniting a passion for sports with individual dignity and success.

Through its support of the Special Olympics, Safilo demonstrates its compassion towards significant charitable initiatives and the importance of corporate responsibility, supporting this project aimed at improving the welfare of those involved.

The Safilo Group is worldwide leader in the premium eyewear sector and maintains a leadership position in the prescription, sunglasses, fashion and sports eyewear sectors. Present in the international market through exclusive distributors and more than 30 subsidiaries in primary markets (U.S.A., Europe and Far East). The main proprietary branded collections distributed are: Safilo, Carrera, Smith Optics, Oxydo, Blue Bay, and the licensed branded collections are: Alexander McQueen, A/X Armani Exchange, Balenciaga, Banana Republic, Bottega Veneta, BOSS by Hugo Boss, Diesel, 55DSL, Dior, Emporio Armani, Fossil, Giorgio Armani, Gucci, HUGO by Hugo Boss, J.Lo by Jennifer Lopez, Jimmy Choo, Juicy Couture, Kate Spade, Liz Claiborne, Marc Jacobs, Marc by Marc Jacobs, Max Mara, Max&Co., Nine West, Pierre Cardin, Saks Fifth Avenue, Valentino, Yves Saint Laurent and, starting from Fall 2010, Tommy Hilfiger.

About Special Olympics

Special Olympics is an international organization that changes lives by promoting understanding, acceptance and inclusion between people with and without intellectual disabilities. Through year-round sports training and athletic competition and other related programming for more than 2.25 million children and adults with intellectual disabilities in more than 150 countries, Special Olympics has created a model community that celebrates people’s diverse gifts. Founded in 1968 by Eunice Kennedy Shriver, Special Olympics provides people with intellectual disabilities continuing opportunities to realize their potential, develop physical fitness, demonstrate courage and experience joy and friendship. There is no cost to participate in Special Olympics. Visit Special Olympics at www.specialolympics.org.

Safilo Group Press Office

Tel.: +39 / 049 / 698 5459

Fax: +39 / 049 / 698 7075

E-Mail: pressoffice@safilo.com

New York Accessories Magazine Feature izzi bag

How I Did It

Anne Agoren, owner of UK / NYC based izzi Bag, shows how to build a brand over Twitter. Lauren Parker finds that life is indeed tweet.

Tweeting her way to success here’s a story a little bird told us:

izzi bag on Twitter

Out of the 17 million users on Twitter, 250,000 were nominated for the Shorty Awards—an international “Oscars” for those who live their life out loud on Twitter in 140- character blurbs. Of those 250,000 nominated, a year-old,  little-known English handbag company named izzi Bag made it to the top six in the “Brands” category—the only fashion brand nominated. izzi was up against brands like Whole Foods and ultimately lost to Sesame Street. Heard of them? Here, izzi Bag owner/designer Anne Agoren—who wisely moonlights as a social media strategist—tells Accessories her David and Goliath tale.

‘Are you listening? Because your competitors are. You need to join the conversation— because it’s going on with or without you.”

@accessoriesmag: So how did you get into the top six? Do you have 86,000 followers like Sesame Street? Or 4.7  million followers like Ashton Kutcher?

@izzibag: I have 2,000 followers and was nominated by one of them. You aren’t allowed to nominate yourself.  Actually, I did lose some points after showing someone via Twitter how to nominate me since he was having trouble and asked for help.

AM: You only have 2,000 followers?

AA: That’s one of the biggest misnomers for brand promotion. More is not better. It’s  about quality, not quantity. I have 2,000 of the right followers. They spread my word to their followers. There are lots of sites where you can buy 50,000 followers but they’re not relevant to your brand. Don’t do it. You’ll start getting spam and your important—and legitimate—followers will stop following you. Protect your brand reputation.

AM: How do you get started using Twitter?

AA: My techie husband pushed me into it to help build my budding brand. I was so resistant to Twitter—saying I didn’t understand it, that I didn’t have enough time, and so on. Now I’m a Twitter addict. I use it to promote my blog (blog.izzibag.com), to talk about things that are happening to me, and to strategically promote the brand. I realized the power of Twitter early on—I ran a Twitter competition where the first 10 people who went to one of my retailers on Bond Street got a $40 keychain. Suddenly, a rush of people went to that store. It was apparent it was working.

AM: Did you launch your brand and tweet about it simultaneously?

AA: I launched izzi Bag with no customers, no retailers, no e-tailers. So I used Twitter and the blog to find those small stores that I wouldn’t even know about. The goal was to get retailers talking about us. To build that buzz.

AM: Do you think that too many brands don’t take Twitter seriously enough?

AA: You need to join the conversation—because it’s going on without you. The most important thing I say to companies is  ‘Are you listening?’ Because if you’re not, your competitors are. On Twitter, you can read every tweet that mentions your brand—good and bad—and respond if you want. It’s important to join the conversation.

Bag Lady - Anne of izzi bag

AM: What do you tweet about?

AA: I come here a lot so I write about my life as an English person in New York. I write about the journey of building izzi  Bag. Yes I’m a brand but I’m also human. People want to relate to you. It makes them want to buy your product.

AM: Do you use Twitter to show your bags?
AA: I use Twitpic to upload images, but often I link a Twitter entry to my blog so people can see more there. There are so many tools that are all free, from Twitpic to Tweetdeck, which helps you manage Twitter better.

AM: Do you tweet all day?

AA: No, but my followers are passionate! When I slow down, they start with the ‘Where’s izzi Bag?’ ‘Did something happen to izzi Bag?’ They miss me! I’d say 60% of my tweets are relevant to my brand. The rest are relevant to other people — recommendations of things to check out, or I pass along information I read on Twitter.

AM: Ah, so you’re a re-tweeter?
AA: In many cases, yes. You can retweet (i.e. RT) something that one of your followers post. It’s good will and keeps the conversation going.


AM: Did building buzz on Twitter in the U.S. and UK give you immediate international cred?

AA: I was able to simultaneously connect with retailers worldwide—all for free, and all with the power of social media.

AM: Has Twitter gotten you free publicity?

AA: The Australian news show equivalent of “60 Minutes” found me on Twitter. They sent a crew to New York and filmed me for a day-long documentary. Later, they flew the reporters back to New York to get additional footage because they wanted to extend the segment! That publicity didn’t cost me one cent. And although it aired in Australia, I was able to post it on my blog and tweet about it, and still get local (and worldwide) exposure. Again, for free. Take a look at the video SundayNight Live.

AM: How does a brand prevent a tweeter from posing as them and saying something bad?
AA: It’s important to control the conversation. You can be verified by Twitter (celebrities do it), and you’ll get a blue check next to your brand’s name/avatar. That way the Twitter community knows it’s authentically you.

AM: But it must be a little bit tempting to bash your competition on Twitter…

AA: Never do that! If you report another company for spam, for example, the Twitter police will shut them down while they investigate, so you really must follow business ethics. I will unfollow people if they don’t “keep it clean.” That’s my one rule.


AM: What about companies who say they don’t have time to tweet? Or skimp on the resources to hire someone who can?

AA: Social media should not replace your existing business structure, but it must be integrated with what you have in place. Just as a brand has a PR, branding and advertising budget, it must have a social media budget.

AM: What if the company owner, or designer doesn’t want to tweet personally?
AA: The person doing the tweeting or blogging must have a passion and understanding of the brand and its objective. They should write in the “voice” of the brand.

AM: What are some great Twitter branding anectodes?
AA: There were some people in the Empire State building tweeting that it was so hot and they wished they had ice cream, but they were too busy to run out and get some. An ice cream truck picked up the conversation on Twitter and sent over a truck to give them free ice cream! The story got picked up on the international news. You can’t buy that sort of publicity!


AM: So what were the Shorty Awards like?

AA: First of all, I pulled a Diva moment and while walking the Red Carpet I refused to be photographed with some of the puppets from Sesame Street. Then they beat me!

June 2010 – Accessories Magazine

Shorty Awards Diva Fit - No Sesame Street Here!

Mirror, Mirror: Summer’s hot accessories come in Lucite

Accessories Council invited  Elizabeth Wellingotn to talk  to some of our members about  what is hot for the summer in the world of accessories and here is what she had to say:

Article written By Elizabeth Wellington, Fashion Columnist for the Philladelphia Inquirer.

From Prada heels to Chanel bags, it’s time to welcome Lucite back as a see-through sensation. Whether you go designer or costume, the transparent accessories are clearly the statement pieces of the season.

There’s John Wind, chief executive officer of Aston-based Maximal Art, who says he is “obsessed” with it. For spring, he fashioned the clear resin into ropes of flowers and butterflies on bold chain-link necklaces. R.J. Graziano, of Home Shopping Network fame, tinted his pearl-shaped earrings with soft blues and peach for a lovely icy effect. And then there’s Brooklyn-based jewelry designer Alexis Bittar, jewelry’s modern-day Lucite king. His elegantly carved bangles are available in pastels as well as primary shades.

I’m not immune to the Lucite love, having recently purchased a ring courtesy of Robert Rose.

But the ultimate stamp of approval comes from our best girlfriends: Carrie, Miranda, Charlotte, and Samantha, who will be wearing the clear jewels – as well as clothes by Prada, Venexiana, and of course, Oscar de la Renta - in Sex and the City 2, debuting in theaters Thursday. Lucite bangles and long necklaces will be effortlessly mixed into the girls’ wardrobes, and I have it on good authority that Kim Cattrall will be wearing Lucite by New York-based jewelry designer Kenneth J. Lane in her appearances promoting the movie.

“It can be worn with anything, with any color, and any time of year,” said Lane, whose Lucite pieces are sold at stores including Anthropologie. “It can be worn in the winter on black and in the summer on white. I just love mixing it with baroque pearls and chains. The beauty is you can wear a lot of it and not look overdone.”

So how did the pretty plastic take over the jewelry world?

Known scientifically as polymethyl methacrylate, the synthetic polymer was developed in the late 1920s and marketed by Rohm & Haas in 1933 as Plexiglas; around the same time DuPont developed a similar product that it named Lucite, which became the more popular name in the 1950s. (Since then, it’s been sold under many trade names including Polycast and Oroglass, but people often refer to any clear plastic as Lucite.) The clear polymer made for a wonderful ingredient in car hood ornaments and was also used in furniture and china.

But it is Lucite’s appearance and durability that make it perfect in the jewelry world. After designers such as Cartier started mixing glass with diamonds in the 1920s for particularly rich-looking brooches and chains, artists picked up on Lucite, and its opaque cousin Bakelite, because it had the same effect but was shatterproof, Lane said.

Actress and fashion icon Gloria Swanson used to wear “those stretch Cartier bracelets, and I did a version that was much bigger and used Lucite,” he said of the early-1960s pieces that helped start his career.

Then Lucite and Bakelite became part of fashion’s big-bigger-and-biggest bauble obsession of the 1970s, when use of costume jewelry was at its height. The 1980s became more about the real thing – the precursor to early-’90s minimalism and then early-millennium bling.

Bittar, who started selling hand-carved Lucite on the streets of New York in the early ’90s, gave the transparent accessory its modern comeback. Once he started selling to Barneys, the collection grew as fashionistas and fashion directors noticed how the pieces added oomph to their magazine spreads.

“It was a slow movement,” said Liz Scarlett of Scarlett Alley in Old City, which has been carrying Bittar’s work since the 1990s. “It’s retro-modern.”

But it wasn’t until two years ago, Scarlett said, that she noticed an increase in Lucite sales as other designers started easing the polymer back into collections.

Michael Kors showed an oversize beaded necklace for his spring 2010 collection in February. And R.J. Graziano’s icy Lucite grouping does well on HSN. (When I mentioned to a girlfriend that I was writing this column, she said it took all her willpower not to mortgage her house for the costume jewels.)

Philadelphia’s own Gary Rose, chief executive officer of Robert Rose, worked with department stores this year to develop a private-label clear-jewelry collection. Now Macy’s is marketing it as its Lucite collection, part of the store’s must-have looks for spring.

“I think it’s a great palate cleanser,” Rose said. “It mixes well with chains and metals, and it’s the perfect accessory for a strong pastel color story.”

Lucite for Summer


Father’s Day Hot Gifts

Have you even started thinking about Father’s Day? well best you do, as it will soon be upon us June 20th and we at the Accessories Council have been scouring New York to find the best gifts around. So here are a few of our top choices.

Kenneth Cole Cuff links at $40

These cuff links are just what any dad would want especially if he is a golfer, The best thing about this gift is that everyday that he wears them he can look at them and think  of you. They are gorgeous  by Kenneth Cole and a bargain at only $40 go to Kenneth Cole‘s website for stockists.

CK reversible Belt at only $45

If you have a little bit more money to spend how about this lovely belt by CK comes in Black leather and a steal at $45, what is more it is reversible.

A/X Armani Exchange Aviator Sun Glasses $65

I think these super Sun Glasses by A/X have to be my favorites, I know my dad will look uber chic in these and at only $65 I think they are an absolute steal. They are available online or for a list of stockists check the website Armani Exchange

Olympus FE-47 Digital camera, $119.99

Our top priced gift is the Olympus FE-47 Digital Camera, priced at $119.99 and I know my dad would love to have an easy to use camera. Capturing all those precious moments forever. For a list of stockist’s go the Olympus Website.

Mother’s Day “Tweet This! with Robert Verdi”

On May 4, Robert Verdi in conjunction with us here at the Accessories Council Tweeted Live at his Luxe Laboratory with 30-40 in-demand fashion, beauty and lifestyle bloggers to let the world in on what was hot for Mother’s Day. Robert was of course life and soul of the party and entertained us all with his funny stories whilst informing all the bloggers  with his how-tos on Mother’s Day Gifting and his must-haves for every type of Mom.

Twitter Party at Robert Verdi

Just some of the bloggers included our very own Accessories Council member Anne Agoren of izzi bag and as we all know that she was nominated for a ‘Shorty Award’ and reached the final 6 out of 250,000 nominees. Other bloggers included Lucky, Seventeen and  Cosmo magazines alongside Second City Style, Diva Moms,Fashion Pulse Daily and Aly Walansky.

Top New York Bloggers

Some of the products that were reviewed included the Brelli, a beautiful Umbrella which is made of 100% bio degradable parts, so not only is it uber-stylish but it is great for the earth too. Made from Bamboo, cotton and clear plastic so you can feel good about the long term effects on the environment by carrying this stylish Umbrella.

Robert looking Uber Stylish with the Brelli

Robert had his good friend Rebecca Cole there with her book, Paradise Found, and she entertained us all with her witty stories of travelling with Robert. You had to be there to understand the humour, but she made us all laugh at how Robert refuses to stand in line at airports. Rebecca told everyone how mother’s do not always want a bunch of flowers which will die in a week. It is more practical to buy mom a plant for the garden, which will grow year after year and more importantly plant it for her.

Rebecca Cole - Paradise Found

One of the gifts Robert talked about was the Clipa, this is for mom’s on the go, an instant handbag hanger. Honestly believe me the Clipa will extend the life of your handbag as it prevents it from sitting on the floor. With over a dozen finishes to choose from and you can hang it on your handbag when not in use which also means you are not routing around looking for it when needed. They are really sturdy and designed to hold the heaviest of handbags.

The Ultimate Handbag Saver - The Clipa

Marimekko, the internationally renowned Finish Design house brings it’s famous floral motif to Avon’s limited edition Crusade Tote. This gift has a double duty not only can you carry your belongings but also give to a worthy charity as 100% of the net profits from the sale of each bag is donated to Avon’s breast cancer crusade.

100% net profit donated to Avon's breast cancer crusade

Other brands that were talked about on the night were Ginger & Liz nail varnish, worn by many celebs, Banana Republic Sunglasses, Anne Klein Watch,  Skagen Bracelet which was so chic.

Everyone had a wonderful evening and it was great to hear that everyone agreed it was going to be a difficult decision in what to buy our mom’s for Mother’s day. I think my mom got almost one of everything!

KEZA means Beautiful in Kinyarwanda

KEZA means ‘Beautiful’ in Kinyawanda, the native tongue of Rwanda, where KEZA was born. Our President of the Accessories Council met with them this week and  they sent some of their jewelry over for us to take a look at. I am posting some of the pictures below but here is their story.

KEZA JewelryKEZA us an ethically driven couture fashion label and business development firm. They develop 100% African owned and operated fashion businesses. KEZA sales enable businesses to earn an income that affords them school fees, health care, food, water, shelter and a path to dignity.

Paper Based Products

KEZA spent four years in Kigali, Rwanda creating the business and developed solid, replicable systems for the production of manuals, assembly lines, standardized material procedures etc.They learned to operate in a way that left as little of their American footprint in their work as possible.

100% African Owned

The fashion industry is a $298 billion per year market in the US alone and has been extremely resilient even through the recession. Westerners will always want to look and feel good. It’s part of the fabric of our society, on the other side of the world there are thousands of entrepreneurs searching for a viable business that will sustain their families. KEZA unites these two worlds.

$2000 provides income for 50 women and their families

Although Africa is known primarily for disease and poverty it is certainly not the full scope of the continent. KEZA believe that if they can showcase her beauty and excellence they might be able to change the expectations of their people. KEZA teaches their African partners to run their own businesses. They help them develop to the point of profitability, not just sustainability. They teach them how to sell locally and regionally and now internationally.

KEZA is a For-profit social venture

KEZA is a For-profit social venture

KEZA say that products are priced according to their international market value, not just what they can get away with purchasing them for. This price is far greater than what Fair Trade systems would require them to pay.

100% Paper Based

KEZA is a for profit social venture and when needed their foundation provides funding for school fees for the the children and family health care in order to create an environment conducive for doing business. When you give to the foundation, 100% of the funds go directly yo their partners.

What a wonderful story and we are really proud to be show casing their products. Take a look at their website http://KEZA.COM

A little help for Mother’s Day May 9th

The modern Mother’s Day is celebrated on various days in many parts of the world, most commonly in May, though also in March, as a day to honor mother’s and motherhood. In the United States it was nationally recognized as a holiday in 1914 after a campaign by Anna Jarvis. In some countries, it follows the old traditions of Mothering Sunday. So if you have not decided what to get for your MOM then let us help you along the way.

Sprout Eco Friendly Bio-Degradable Watch

The Sprout Eco  friendly bio- degradable watch are lead and phthalate free.  Sprout™ watches use only Mercury Free batteries so for anyone feeling like being ‘Green’ this is a wonderful product. They come is so many colours so take a look at their website http://sproutwatches.com retails at $30 and is available at Amazon.com

Clipa Ring

How cool is this Handbag Clipa Ring, no longer have you got to put your handbag or purse on the floor in a bar or restaurant you can hang it right under the table where you are sitting. It is available in Silvertone or in Limited Edition Pink for Breast Cancer. When not in use it can just hang on your handle of your bag so that it is always there when you need it.The retail price point starts at $19.99 and available at  http://clipa.us

If your MOM is a jewelry fiend then how about this really pretty bracelet by Maxima, I have to say if my family are reading our blog then please take note you guys know what my name begins with.

John Wind initial Pom Pom braceletThis lovely bracelet retails at $80 and is available at http://maximalart.com

Of course if you like cozy and cutie jewelry then how about these beautiful necklaces from Alex Woo, I think the little Teddy Bear is so cool and if I had a little baby then would love to have this gift (Obviously Hubby would be buying) but they are super in either Silver or Gold or even with diamonds, so what do you think?

Alex Woo Jewelry

Necklaces by Alex Woo retail price starts at $168 and they are available at Henri Bendels or Bloomingdales. http://www.alexwoo.com/

Avon ToteThis Flowery Tote is really bright and spring looking is designed and produced by Finnish Brand Marrimekko and the most amazing thing is that AVON is donating 100% of the proceeds to Breast Cancer so at only $10 this is a steal buy just go to http://avon.com

Sock - a - bye- BabyAre these a lovely gift or what? soft socks for mom and baby they are divine, Soothe and comfort tired sole. great to use at home, hospitals, airplanes and hotel rooms. non-binding and perfectly plush with slip-free tread and retail at $39.95 from the Foot Petals and can be found at http://footpetals.com

MAXX NYC Wristlet purse

And finally how about this glazed faux wristlet purse the lining is really funky it is Zebra stripped, retailing at only $18 available in lots of bright summery colours and I am sure any MOM would find an occasion to use them. Go to http://maxxnewyork.com

So I hope that we have given you some ideas on what to get MOM for Mother’s day, make sure that she feels special and remember she is one in a million !