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Fashion. Entertainment. Culture. Technology

INNOVATE! ISSUE VOLUME 12

KENDALL JENNER what you don’t know

MEET SHARK TANK’S

DAYMOND JOHN PALAYE ROYALE ROCK & ROLL IS REBORN GILT.COM invitation only

D iscove r

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C r eative

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EDITOR’S NOTE WELCOME TO RAINE MAGAZINE Thank you for taking this journey with us over the years. In the spring of 2007, the first issue of Raine was launched. It was launched to fill a void that existed in the market. Our mission is to provide a multimedia platform for the creative and unconventional entrepreneur and to do it in a way that is both inspiring and empowering. My first introduction into the creative industries was as a fashion designer and consultant. As a designer and entrepreneur my day to day was very different from the conventional positions I held in the past. I also met many talented individuals like myself that decided to take a chance on their passion and pursue it as a career. With very few options in digital and print media to showcase the talent and lifestyle of these individuals, Raine Magazine was born. I saw a need to build a community of individuals that are at the top of their game and seeking additional means of getting the word out about their product, talent or service. Raine is the go to destination for the must know in fashion, entertainment, culture and technology. We discover the next big names around the world everyday! Raine provides real stories about real people going after their dreams. It also offers the must know products and services that can enhance the lifestyle of our readers. It’s the combination of beautiful imagery, personal journeys and lifestyle that attracts new readers to Raine everyday. Since launching in 2007 as an exclusive online publication, we have grown quite a bit. Now offered in print and digital, our glossy publication is exclusively available at Barnes and Nobles newsstands as well as industry events. We have increased our print distribution of 200 locations to almost 700 stores nationwide! Our digital edition is available on Zinio.com and coming this Fall, Raine Magazine will be on the Nook, the Nook App, and BarnesandNoble.com. Of course, both digital and print editions are offered at HYPERLINK “http://rainemagazine.com” http://rainemagazine.com. . Need to know more? talktous@rainemagazine.com Scan below to join the storm! Enjoy! FASHION. ENTER

TAINMENT. CULTU

INNOVATE! ISSU E VOLUME 12

RE. TECHNOLOGY

KENDA JENNERLL what you don

’t know

MEET SHARK

DAYMOND TANK’S JO PALA ROYA HN ROCK &YE ROLL IS REB LE GILT.COM ORN

invitation only

Nova Lorraine Founder and Editor

D I S C O V E R

T H E

C R E A T I V E

A N D

U N C O N V E N T I O N A L

E N T R E P R E N E U R


MAGAZINE

RAINE FASHION. ENTERTAINMENT. CULTURE. TECHNOLOGY INNOVATE! issue

fashion SHOPPING IN THE CITY

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14 adornmant

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18 AMBER PATON KENDALL JENNER 22 FINISHING TOUCHES casual cool 28

26

beauty

> 48 glowing skin

TIE SOCIETY 30

32 malan

FRESH FACE 50

breton

54 Maik Wiedenbach

GILT GROUPE 36

culture

BEAUTY RE-DEFINED 47

business

38 PALAYE ROYALE JOE DEANGELIS 40

stars 42 > rising44 EVENTS where to eat .stay.chill 58

medea vodka 60 FINE ART 62

NEXT LEVEL

67

TECH TOYS 74

rainemaker 76

INTERNATIONAL FASHION 78


MAGAZINE

RAINE Entrepreneurs. Fashion. Technology

VOL 12

ED ITORIA L TEA M Nova Lorraine - Founder and Creative Director Marilyn Wilson - Senior Editor Alexis Fedor - Copy Editor Derron Forrest - Business Development R E S E A R C H E D I TO R Carlotta Harrington

CONTRIBUTING WRITERS Heather Ulery Jenna Drancsak David J. Freschman Mariessa Terrell, ESQ. Tina Chen Jessica Davis Kia Rodriquez Milan Rowson Michelle Winters

SPECIAL THANKS Frederique Porter Javier Hernandez Natasha Gabriel Tina Littlejohn Nekisha Slade COVER CREDITS Christopher Beyer www.cbeyerphoto.com INQUIRIES Press: media@rainemagazine.com Advertising: advertise@rainemagazine.com Submissions: submissions@rainemagazine.com

A RT D I R E C T I O N Martina Micko

RAINE MAGAZINE NEW YORK * LA * SAN FRANCISCO * MIAMI CORRESPONDENCE Raine Magazine PO Box 410880 Melbourne, FL 32940 Raine Magazine is a trademark of Raine Creative Holdings LLC and is published quarterly. All contents, logos, and articles are copyrighted materials and all right are reserved. Any reproduction in whole or in part without written permission of Raine Creative Holdings is prohibited. The publisher also reserves the right to refuse any advertising material for any reason deemed inappropriate by publisher. Raine Magazine’s subscription is $50.00. Please make checks payable to Raine Creative Holdings. To distribute Raine at your business, please email editor@rainemagazine.com.


FAS H I O N TO LIV E F O R 

This Page: Top: Greg Mills Pant: H&M Boots: Custo Barcelona Hat: Sensi Studio Equador Opposite Page: Dress: Missoni Sunglasses: Juicy Couture Rain coat: H&M 6

Shopping in the City Rai ne M a g a z i n e - V o l u m e 1 2


Photographer: Michael Morrison (michael-morrison.com) Stylist: Darryl Glover Makeup: Aya Kudo Hair Stylist: Joey Oso Model: Danielly Silva (One Model Management) Top: Lie Sang Bong


This Page: Dress: Gracia, Shoes: Vince Camuto, Necklace: Ben - Amun Opposite Page: Top: H&M, Skirt: Lie Sang Bon, Shoes: Top Shop, Necklace: Ben - Amun, Ring: H&M


Top: H&M, Necklace: Ben - Amun


Dress: Honey Punch, Necklace: H&M, Ring: Ben Amun, Belt: AMI Clubwear, Clutch: Marc Jacobs


Top: Lie Sang Bong Pant: Missoni Shoe: Tania Spinelli Shades: Lie Sang Bong


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September 19-20, 2012 82Mercer - SoHo New York, NY www. c o astsh ows.com


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adornmant 14

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Photography: Carrie Schechter carrieschechterstudios.com Hair: Leo Eley - leoeley.com Makeup: Chris Milone chrismilonemakeup.com Models: Martine at Red Model Management | Vika Skyte at Muse NYC Stylist & Creative Director: OpÊ M. OPÉstyle.com


Syd & Pia earrings Norma Ishak maribou necklace and cuff Laruicci ring OPPOSITE: Laruicci necklaces Betsey Johnson dress Lie Sang Bong shoes

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Circa Sixty Three earrings Lariucci earrings and cuff Jewel By Lisa halter


Laruicci earrings and choker Syd and Pia necklace Blank Silk cape Syd & Pia bib necklace Circa Sixty Three rings


FAS H I O N TO LIV E F O R 

A MB E R PAT T O N

A DESIG NE R WI T H A M I S S I O N

By Jenna Drancsak

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An unforgettable Kimono inspired dress, a stunning exotic floral print top, and not to mention, tailored pants to die for, defines the latest looks in designer Amber Patton’s collection. One look at this season’s line would make your jaw drop knowing that Amber launched her brand only two short years ago, after ten years of retail experience. The sophisticated and chic quality of her designs and the already great success she’s had with them, makes her a force to be reckoned with. Born in Nashville, Tennessee, Amber grew up on the outskirts of San Diego, California and today resides in New York City where she calls herself a “certified New Yorker and a Yankee fan.” After receiving her BA in Literature, she traveled as an international flight attendant and went to several respected trade schools for make up art, esthetics and design. “I’ve always loved to study my interests,” she says of her various journeys and educations. Amber credits her mother and grandmother for introducing her to design. They were quilt masters and

made fine linens that either turned into clothing or were used around the house. Amber says, “though I didn’t realize it at the time, I was learning a lot about fashion by being around them.” Another big influence was CNN’s “Style with Elsa Klench.” After seeing her show she was dead set on fashion. “The international runway footage, combined with Elsa’s authoritative commentary and her chic personal style left me star-struck.” Today, Amber admires Miuccia Prada for making her own rules, for having what it takes to create the hottest trends in fashion, and for keeping her private life separate from her business life. “It says something that she’s still young, alive and well, and the biggest museum in New York City (the Metropolitan Museum of Art), is doing a show about her.” After having two sons, Amber decided to start her own business because she was tired of the “stay at home mom stuff.” This brings us to two years ago, when she established her company. So far, Amber has enjoyed great success with the help of some mentors who guided her along the way. Her friends, family, and some entrepreneurs shed light on their struggles and successes, what worked for them

and what didn’t work in the business world. Amber’s journey and her new company have presented plenty of obstacles along the way- the first one is having to deal with a limited budget. She says, “It takes money to make money. That is something my dad, another entrepreneur, always used to say and he wasn’t lying!” Furthermore, whereas most successful fashion companies have manufacturing in China, India, and other countries where worker’s wages are drastically lower than those of Americans, Amber manufactures her line here in America, and she struggles to keep the costs down when making her luxury products. “There are so many companies that are producing products very inexpensively and yet they are still selling them to retailers for huge profits on the wholesale price. This standard practice is responsible for those crazy, incredibly inflated price tags you see at department stores… do you ever wonder how a store can put a dress on sale at 80% off and still make money? That’s how padded those prices are…” she says.  Amber wants to blaze a new trail with her company, avoiding the traps of the wholesale business. For now, I’m not going to wholesale my products at all. Maybe I’ll consign, if the split is fair. What I do is to sell directly to my customers online, giving them a luxury product at a wholesale price. And it’s very convenient to try things on in the comfort of your own home.” This phrase is followed by a smile, and a question. “Can I say that again? I give my customers a LUXURY product at a wholesale price, and I make everything in America! I want more people to know about it!” Amber Patton’s vision and values are what sets her apart from other designers. One can feel there is a special energy here because of what she’s trying to accomplish with her company. “I want to support and build up the long since forgotten, hard-working American industry that our country grew up on. Lately, it hasn’t been the “land of opportunity” it should be. We were watching too much TV, daydreaming about impossible things, taking out loans and living on borrowed money and then BOOM!! This recession hit us hard.” With the success of companies like Amber’s, jobs can be created, helping to solve the issues of unemployment that plagues our economy.  For the future, Amber’s goals aim for the sky. In addition to selling out of her next several collections, recovering her start-up costs and hiring more team members, she hopes to expand. Plans to open a warehouse/factory in New York or New Jersey are already being discussed, where Patton will implement an employee training and education system. The goal is not to simply hire qualified applicants and work for the almighty dollar- but to actually take a chance on otherwise unemployed, even disadvantaged American citizens who are eager to learn a trade and train them to work with their hands and make a living. Patton says “I envision a factory one day, running like a well-oiled, American machine- making garments and accessories, packing, shipping, receiving goods, making repairs, operating computer terminals and answering phone lines, etcetera!” Her goals and plans for her company is a model other companies could learn from. Fashion is coveted by society and holds it together like glue. If Amber Patton has her way, it will also bring Industrialism back to America. 

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RUTHIE DAVIS WEARING THE RUTHIE DAVIS “APPLE” PUMP / WEST CHELSEA, NEW YORK CITY www.ruthiedavis.com


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Rai ne M a g a z i n e - V o l u m e 1 2 By Nova Lorraine Researched by Carlotta Harrington

-what you don’t know

FA S H ION IC ON KENDALL JENNER

FAS H I O N TO LIV E F O R 


Meet Kendall Jenner, one of fashion’s newest rising icons. Jenner is the daughter of Kris and Bruce Jenner and the younger sister of Kourtney, Kim and Khloe Kardashian. Kendall has recently endorsed deals with OPI Nicole Nail Polish, Venus Gillette Razors and along with her sister Kylie is now a “West Coast Fashion Contributor” for Seventeen Magazine. Kendall is known for her keen sense of fashion on the red carpet and is a social media sensation with over 3 million Twitter followers! Raine Magazine had the pleasure of catching up with Kendall and getting to know this dynamic young entrepreneur! RAINE: How would you describe yourself? JENNER: I’m kind of shy but a fun person when I get to know you. I love being with my friends and my family. I like being outside - snow boarding, riding horses and boogie boarding; and I love being at the beach! RAINE: What are some fun facts about Kendall? JENNER: I’m loyal, protective and picky. RAINE: What don’t we know about Kendall? JENNER: I have to have everything perfect. It works in my favor when I’m getting ready. For example, when someone is doing my makeup – if I see something that no one else sees and then fix it, I feel confident. RAINE: What are some of your hobbies? JENNER: During the summer I try to go surfing as much as I can with my sister. We have a lot fun with it because we’re not trying to be pro’s. I love horses! I rode for 10 years. That was my main thing since I was two years old. Also, a year after I started modeling, I got into cheerleading at school.

with and whom I talk to. I need to really know the person and really trust the person to let them into my life. RAINE: How does having famous sisters negatively and positively affect your pursuit of your own career? JENNER: It’s sometimes easier because what I have going for me already. However, I feel that I have had to work a little harder in a sense because everyone around me sees the pictures that I take, so I have to watch out for everything. RAINE: Do you have an interest in becoming an actress? JENNER: No. I think it would be cool but modeling is my passion. RAINE: Who is your favorite Supermodel? JENNER: I love Giselle B.

Alice and Olivia Chanel Louis Vuitton Dolce and Gabbana RAINE: Are you in a relationship? JENNER: NO RAINE: What advice would you give to someone without the name recognition trying to break into the modeling world? JENNER: Follow your heart. Contact an agency; put your all into everything you do and talk to your parents to see what they think. RAINE: What else do you have coming up? JENNER: I have a bunch of stuff going on…stay tuned…

RAINE: Who are your favorite designers? JENNER:

RAINE: What’s your dream? JENNER: My dream is to walk the runway of a huge designer or be on the cover of an amazing magazine. J RAINE: Who was the first person that inspired you to go into modeling? JENNER: My whole family inspired me. I would take pictures of myself and they would be on my computer. My sisters and my mom would say that they looked amazing and that I have to do something about it. My Dad, at first, preferred me being the horse back rider but now the modeling has grown on him. He thinks it’s good at my age to have a job; it will prepare me for the future. RAINE: Is modeling everything you thought it would be? JENNER: Yes. I love being able to dress up and feel confident in front of the camera. It’s also fun to meet new people. However, I didn’t know how tiring it would be. Sometimes I want to pass out at the end of the day. RAINE: What is the most challenging moment you’ve had so far in your modeling career? JENNER: Missing school is challenging. It’s hard to make up the work and having my teachers get mad at me. RAINE: What was your scariest moment on the runway? JENNER: For a second, my dress wouldn’t zip and the scariest thing was that I would look stupid. Afterwards though it was an adrenaline rush. RAINE: Would you describe yourself as innovative? If yes, why? JENNER: I feel like Kylie and I live a double life – we are the Hannah Montana’s. We’re working, we have the Reality TV show and at the same time we’re going to school. Our friends don’t see us any differently – they’ve known us since kindergarten and keep us grounded. When I go to school, I feel like a normal person and I like that. RAINE: How has your life changed since “Keeping Up With the Kardashians” aired? JENNER: Now, I am so cautious with whom I become friends

Photographer: Christopher Beyer, www.cbeyerphoto.com Styling: Luke Storey, www.lukestorey.com Assistant Stylists: Nico X. Ortega & Mickaela Adams Sunglasses - Dior; Printed silk blouse - Versace; Turquoise blazer - Rag & Bone; Pink tweed shorts - Zara; Pink patent leather wedges - Vera Wang Lavender; Rose gold necklace - H&M OPPOSITE PAGE: Sequined black and white striped dress - Alice + Olivia; Yellow peep toes - Shoes of Prey; Floral leggings - H&M; Bracelets - Ted Baker; Necklace - H&M


Gold silk top - Lanvin; Green floral blouse - Amber Patton; Yellow gem and pearl necklace - Kate Spade; Leopard suede printed shoes - Giuseppe Zanotti; Floral neoprene skirt - Elizabeth and James


White silk blouse - Alice + Olivia; Black and white striped bow tie - www.JillPineda.com; Green patent skinny belt - J. Crew; Cut off denim shorts - H&M; Black creepers - H&M Cover Credits: Yellow tweed blazer: Zara; White blouse Theyskens Theory; Sequined tank; J. Crew; Pants - H&M; Silver pumps - Lanvin; Lala flower necklace - Ayana Designs The Backyard - W Los Angeles Hotel Westwood

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FAS H I O N TO L IV E F O R 

The Finishing Touches Stylist Ashante Nicole shows us how to mix it up with accessories this season.

Activist Eyewear: $450 L.a.m.b. Shoes: $265 Clutch: Vintage Bangle: Vintage 26

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Activist Eyewear: 450 L.a.m.b. Shoes: 325 Haskell Necklace: $36 Clutch: Vintage Photographer: Brent Lee


FAS H I O N TO LIV E F O R 

‘Photographer: Devlin Shand Stylist: Beverly Osemwenkhae Makeup Artist: Alison Smith Stylist Assistant: Heather Mitchell Sweater: Club Monaco Scarf: Alexander McQueen Jeans: Won Hundred

CASUAL cool


Suit: Won Hundred Tie:Paul Smith Shirt: Topman Hat: Vintage Shoes: Kenneth Cole

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FAS H I O N TO L IV E F O R 

Tie Society By: Tina Chen

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There are many things that come to mind when thinking about the nation’s capital - a city consumed with the politics of power struggles but a burgeoning fashion scene is not typically the first. Otis Collins and his long-time friend and co-founder, Zac Gittens, are changing that. They are getting politicians (and their proliferate summer interns) on both sides of the isle to put aside their partisan ideologies and come together on at least on issue, their ties. In November of 2011, Collins and Gittens launched a collaborative consumption service for men’s neckties (think Netflix-forneckties) called Tie Society. “We were both working in traditional office environments where ties were a necessary symbol of professionalism, but also as a way to express our individuality” said Collins. To those familiar with the world of fashion, it is no surprise that staying current can be quite expensive and time consuming, but as Gittens said, “We were moving up the ladder, but need to look like we were already at the top”. The two friends who, attended Sidwell Friends School together since they were boys, began swapping ties. “People say professional attire is dead, but what we’re actually seeing is the opposite - the casual Friday workweek is dying. Men are rediscovering that dressing well has numerous benefits in professional and social aspects. There is no longer a stigma associated with looking well kempt. Before long, trading ties amongst themselves expanded to trading amongst acquaintances and as their wardrobe flourished, along with their style reputations. As any entrepreneur will attest to, Tie Society had to overcome a great deal of obstacles - from self-financing down to publicizing the brand. “We made mistakes, but we learned from them and applied those lessons to future decisions. Its only a mistake if you make it twice” said Collins. Tie Society now has members in 40 states, has appeared on the cover of The Washington Post, ships hundreds of packages a month and has die-hard fans who love their new approach to neckwear ownership. As Gittens noted, “The key was, and still is, persistence and dedication to a vision”. The concept is not only clever, but also admirable, as it caters to individuals who do not readily have access to high quality neckwear and/or don’t want a closet full of ties. So how does Tie Society work? Members have unlimited, on demand access to a collection of over 300 designer ties (and growing!) - as their tag line states “Choose the ties you want. Keep them as long as you want. And exchange them as often as you want”. Throw in free shipping both ways and it’s easy to see why guys are joining the Society. The company is rapidly gaining appeal among the young, as well as the old. Their collection is hand picked by fashion stylists with a keen eye for aesthetics, providing top and high-quality products from lines such as Gitman Bros. and Hart Schaffner Marx. The company also carries two of their own brands that are exclusive to Tie Society members: Barbican 1891, which is vintage inspired and hand crafted in one of Italy’s oldest fashion houses and Bear vs. Bull, which is hand made in the USA and is the outward representation of the inward pursuit of excellence. Their collection offers a wide selection of bowties and cufflinks as well. Channeling the ever-popular Mad Men-esque attire, Tie Society offers a classic style fancied by many. Seemingly paradoxical, at least on the surface, this model is actually the smartest, most efficient way to exhibit true class and sophistication. Collins parted our interview leaving a few words of wisdom for future entrepreneurs: “The focus always needs to be on the customer - making them happy and making them need a product they didn’t even know they wanted”. Tie Society is the place to fulfill your desire for a timeless look from head-to-tie whether you’re headed to a business meeting or even a black tie affair. Any lady would surely love a gentleman who sports a great tie.


FAS H I O N TO LIV E F O R 

MALAN BRETON

From Taiwan to New York to Nintendo Researched By Michelle Winters

Malan Breton is the Designer and Creative Director of the Malan Breton Collection. Born in Taipei, Taiwan, Breton currently resides in New York City and Paris and has been designing since the age of 11. With Arnold Scaasi as his mentor, and receiving national and international attention for his women’s collections, last year Malan Breton, along with Karl Lagerfeld and Matthew Williamson were nominated for the WGSN Global Fashion Awards, in the category of Outstanding Fashion Collaboration. Breton’s signature silks and men’s blazers are one of the hottest items amongst both male and female stars in Hollywood. Malan has dressed

stars like Michael Buble, Martha Plimpton, Minnie Driver, Kylie Minogue, Ariana Grande, Nikki Blonsky, Katrina Bowden, Kathy Lee Gifford, and Nolan Gerard - Funk, to name only a few. This season Malan Breton Homme and Malan Breton Collection will be featured weekly on Bravo TV’s (NBC/Universal), The Real Housewives of New York City 4. Previously, Breton was the subject on the six part series called “The Malan Show” featured on Bravo. It highlighted making it in America as an independent designer. Known for designing the look of NBC’s number one rated game show “Minute to Win It”, Breton has also lent his expertise in the industry

to Project Runway, Australia’s Next Top Model, The Today Show, Smithsonian Cooper Hewitt, Princeton University, Dallas Morning News, Bravo TV, MTV, CBS News, the WGSN Global Fashion Awards, and countless other press, media, and educational outlets. Breton seems to continue to raise the bar as he makes the move from runway to television to video games. Last year Breton’s designs were part of a packaging deal with Nintendo Wii systems and ZOO for the video game Minute to Win It. The video game has sold millions internationally.


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FAS H I O N TO LIV E F O R 

A LEADING VISIONARY IN THE FUTURE OF FASHION

AU THOR A ND E NT R E P R E N EUR , A L EXA ND RA WI L K I S W IL S O N

By Nova Lorraine Researched by Heather Ulery

Alexandra Wilkis Wilson is an entrepreneur, mother and

wife, who has a keen eye for buying products. So keen in fact

perspective to what she offers Gilt consumers.

Her passion for philanthropy is obvious when in a

that the company she co-founded, Gilt, is worth (at least) around

conversation with her. Whether she is raising money for the tsunami

goods ranging from Bulgari to Louis Vuitton, she is able to bring a

events, Alexandra is always finding time to give back to others.

the one billion dollar mark. With Alexandra’s background in luxury unique voice to her company. The founders of Gilt work together

to bring goods, styles, products and services - all at a special,

reasonable price, to millions of consumers. Gilt is perfect for the luxury seeking, budget conscious, and style savvy fashionista looking for something reasonable and quick.

Part of the reason Alexandra is so successful stems

from her natural, effortless personal style. Through her constant adventures traveling, she is able to bring back a diverse cultural 36

relief or focusing on the organization of her very own charity

Alexandra is a member of the Board of Directors for three non-

profit organizations, and is also involved in many other charities:

Dress for Success Worldwide, Fashion Group International and Harvard Business School Club of New York are three non-profits that are highly supported by Alexandra.

Alexandra’s love of

humanity is what sets her apart from many young entrepreneurs which also enhances the success of Gilt.

Alexis Maybank, also a co-founder of Gilt, and Alexandra

Rai ne M a g a z i n e - V o l u m e 1 2


have recently completed a book, By Invitation Only: How We

highly

a step by step look at the success and efforts put into Gilt. Both

our

Built Gilt and Changed the Way Millions Shop, which chronicles women express their personal stories and advice to prospective entrepreneurs in a clear and tasteful manner.

Raine magazine was given the opportunity to speak with

Alexandra about her new book, where her inspirations are drawn from, the success of Gilt and her personal lifestyle. RAINE: What inspired you to write the book?

ALEXANDRA: Alexis and I wrote the book together, it actually took a few years to write. We wrote it to inspire entrepreneurship

and innovation, and to help inspire others. We wanted to hopefully

inspire women as well. Sharing our story candidly and honestly with the hope to increase chances of more entrepreneurs and funding. We chose to share ups and downs to inspire more entrepreneurial thinking.

our

coveted

audience. daily

to

In

deals,

we always select products in a very curated way. We have a strong filter as well as choose what our friends would like. Our offerings

are

presented

in

a very tasteful manner

and

enjoy

that

our members

about Gilt. Presently, there are over 5 million

members across the country and the exposure is growing.

RAINE: What do you want the reader of your new book to take away from it?

ALEXANDRA: We hope that anyone can apply the lessons we share to their lives. It could apply if you work in a big organization,

or charitable organization. How to hire, fire, what to think about in advance, how to get funding, how to build partnerships - all can apply to the everyday world.

RAINE: Give us a peek into a day in the life of Alexandra.

We have always had a lot of competition. Mainly through

daily deal sites such as: department stores, amazon etc. It is a highly competitive business, which is fine. That encourages us to

be innovative. For example, a lot of our site extensions came from gut instinct and to meet the needs of our customers.

RAINE: What inspires you when seeking new brands and products for the site?

ALEXANDRA: Looking for the best of the best.

ALEXANDRA: No two days are alike to me. I am never sitting at my

RAINE: Tell us a little about Park and Bond, Gilt’s newest venture.

meetings, or a meeting with designers, CEO’s and partners. I get

ALEXANDRA: It’s a men’s full price lifestyle site, which sells

desk; I am always running around traveling, in internal and external energy and inspiration from being around others; a lot of my day

is on the go. My calendar is full back to back from appointments, meetings and adventures.

RAINE: You have a new position; can you tell us a little more about

What do consumers love most about it?

everything from designer goods, to everyday basics. Our men love it, especially our fashion forward men. We have a really editorial

point of view. We give men content and context on how to wear certain items.

this?

RAINE: What’s next for Gilt?

up trenches. We launched Gilt City in September 2010; it is our Gilt

important, we want customers to have a personalized experience.

ALEXANDRA: Running National Sales of Gilt City, back in the start Curated local city services and experiences. We are now trying to

ALEXANDRA: Mobile technology, personalization is really

build a team to think about offers that can apply to local markets.

RAINE: What were the most challenging obstacles you had to face

RAINE: What should young designers need to have in order to be

ALEXANDRA: I learned to test before you over invest. You don’t

selected for Gilt.

ALEXANDRA: A lot has changed since we started Gilt. Currently, in terms of designers, we are going after bigger companies and national accounts.

RAINE: What separates Gilt from the pack?

in the early days of Gilt?

want to put too many resources in an area before you find it necessary. One of the obstacles we faced was when there were moments when we couldn’t keep up with the customers’ demands,

we had really good inventory but the site couldn’t handle the traffic. It was very complex to manage, but we never wanted to give up

ALEXANDA: We really try to offer things that are special and

because we felt so passionately about it.

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C ULT U R E | M U S IC

Rock and Roll is Reborn with Palaye Royale Raine Magazine Speaks With the Rock Band, Palaye Royale, About Their Inspirations, Goals and QuicklyRising Fame in The Music Industry.

By Heather Ulery

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Years ago you could find the members of Palaye Royale, Sebastian Danzig, Remington Leith  and Emerson Barrett, gathered together in the suburbs of Las Vegas, crammed closely in their private home recording studio for their next jam session.  They have now received over 20 million views on YouTube for their new single Morning Light, an indication that the group might be the next Vegas band to hit big in the music industry.   Over the years the band has worked alongside Grammy Award winning producers who have worked with the likes of Tokio Hotel, David Bowie, Avril Lavigne, Korn, Enrique Inglesias, and Katy Perry. A couple years in the studio and on the road, the band gradually progressed in late of 2011 into what is now known as Palaye Royale  focuses on making a statement not only in the music world but in the fashion industry as well.  Their style is an important trademark for them, an outlet to express their creativity. While they individually have their own personal idols and inspirations, they share some in common, ranging from poets to filmmakers who highly has influenced the band. Palaye Royale as collective songwriters convey light and dark through,

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melodic poetry. The Las Vegas band consisting of Remington Leith the lead vocalist and pianist, Sebastian Danzig the lead guitarist, and drummer, Emerson Barrett.  With a sound so unique it is no wonder Palaye Royale are making it in the big league. They are now starting to pick up speed, making an image for themselves, while at the same time maintaing their individuality. Like any work environment, the music industry presents challenges. The band  have learned to work around obstacles that do not match their vision, remaining true to themselves. Their music strays from the typical radio dance song, with more rawness and soul than a pop track, making it easy on the ears and instrumentally unique.   Raine was able to catch up with the band members Emerson Barrett , Sebastian Danzig and Remington Leith while they were busy recording in Los Angeles to learn

more about their passion, goals and what exactly got the band into the tough life of the music industry. Aside from the groupies, glam and trashed hotel rooms, Palaye Royale are able to emanate the classier side of Rock N’ Roll.

RAINE: Who influences you? PALAYE ROYALE:        SEBASTIAN: As a band we are influenced by filmakers, poets and the iconic rockstars. Individually I’m influcened by Keith Richards of The Stones, Siqur Rós, Steve Lillywhite, Flood, Paul Epworth, Brian Eno, and visionaries.             REMINGTON: My influnences are Joe Cocker, Dave Gahan, and Rod Stewart from The Faces era.         EMERSON: Tim Burton, The Doors, T Rex and Buckminster Fuller. RAINE: What do you and your band mates do in your spare time? PALAYE ROYALE: We are all really artistic, we write poetry, we are all artists.  We are designing ideas for our jewelry line called SER which stands for Sebastian, Emerson, and Remington.  We designed it with Maor Cohen, who has done

a lot of pieces with Johnny Depp and Kelly Clarkson. RAINE: What are your future plans? PALAYE ROYALE: As a band right now we are in preproduction getting back in the studio to record our debut with a producer who worked on The Killers ‘Hot Fuss’ album and then we will take it from there. RAINE: How do you feel about playing live and touring as a band? PALAYE ROYALE: That’s  a huge thing for us as a band, getting out there, touring and playing live. Part of being a band means you have to play live and portray your sound outside of recording.

RAINE: Where were you born? PALAYE ROYALE: SEBASTIAN: Remington and Emerson were born in Las Vegas. While I was born in Toronto.

Photos provided by Palaye Royale.

RAINE: How would you describe your style musically as well as your fashion style? PALAYE ROYALE: Musically, at the end of the day we are a rock band with an indie sound. Fashionably we are more modern Brit, rock style-looking. It’s not just about having a good song, it’s about looking the part too.

To learn more about Palaye Royale and their upcoming performances and album releases, visit: http://www. palayeroyale.com/

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EN TERTA I N M E N T | P H O TOGR A P HER

From Norwalk to Hollywood, Photographer Joe DeAngelis makes his mark. Researched by Michelle Winters Joe DeAngelis is a Los Angeles based photographer, born in Norwalk CT. His use of day light and cinematic, raw style has been catching the attention of many, both here and internationally. Having only recently settled in Los Angeles from New York City, it didn't take long for his work to get noticed. In only a few short months his images have appeared in countless online publications as well as published spreads for Maxim magazine with actress Katrina Law, which published in India, Poland and in the April issue of Maxim USA. Joe continues to work with Hollywood's talent creating inspiring cinematic portraits. "Creatively I would like to think of myself, and of my work, as a form of story telling. I have always been one in love with stories and where they take the reader. Now every time I photograph someone I try to give the audience somewhere to go. Not just something to look at." Necar Zadegan

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Ian Verdun


Ellen Hollman


E N T E RTAINM ENT | FIL M & TE LE V IS I O N

PHOTOGRAPHER: Manfred Baumann

Compiled by Heather Ulery

HELLO

my name is:

April Bowlby

Get to know her… Partial Credits: Lifetime’s Drop Dead Diva, From Prada to Nada, How I Met Your Mother, CSI

RISING STARS Laura Mennell

Fun facts: • I really love food. • I have an adopted Goldendoodle named Clementine. • Recently, I have been knitting, learning to play the piano, and sharpening my cooking skills with a class on chopping with knives the proper way. First acting experience: I played a dead body on CSI. Although it was hard to stay still all that time, it was very exciting and a nice way to get my first acting job. Important Mentor: • One of my greatest mentors, is actress Ivana Milicevic, she’s really supportive. She’s from Croatia and also one of my best friends. We

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run lines together, prepare with each other, and push each other. It’s great to have that. I love acting because: It’s fun. It’s such a simple answer but you get to be someone new everyday. There’s always something different to figure out and I really appreciate that.

A big challenge: When you are just starting, out of 50 auditions you may book 1. It’s hard to not take the rejections personally. I was lucky. I had a great support system and my mom was really there for me. I would call her up everyday. I also had Ivana and she helped me look at the auditions and bookings as a factual thing and to not be emotional about it. Words of wisdom: You need people to keep you grounded. It can be a therapist, an acting coach, a friend, or family member - so you don’t get lost in it all.


PHOTOGRAPHER: Manfred Baumann

HELLO

Seamus Dever

my Photo name by is:Manfred Baumann. Get to know him. Partial Credits: ABC’s Castle, Army Wives, Mad Men, General Hospital, Dark Blue, Drop Dead Diva, Ghost Whisperer FUN FACTS: • I was born in Flint Michigan and moved to Arizona in 1982. • I speak Speak Russian, Spanish and English. • I’m into Carpentry and like working on projects around my house. • I enjoy gardening and have 2-dozen rose bushes in my backyard. • I ride my bike to work. • I graduated college in 3 years with a theater degree and broadcasting journalism degree. I realized that I wanted to act when: “I was in high school and did it wholeheartedly from that moment on.”

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A little about my parents: “My parents are teachers and we moved to Arizona after my father got a teaching position there. My dad is also an amazing artist and often volunteered as a set designer at the high school I attended.” First really big role: “When I played a guest star in the second season of Cold Case - it was submitted for an Emmy.” Biggest Obstacle / Challenge: Getting people to realize that I’m not necessarily like other actors. When I first started doing auditions, people (producers, writers, casting directors) wanted to say that I was a blend of this person and that person. When they found out that I am really not like that, they didn’t know what to expect from me as an actor. When you are not what people anticipate when they hear you speak, it becomes difficult. Sometimes they are not looking for the best actor, they are instead looking for the right actor for the character. 43


B AC K S TAG E PA S S | E V E N T S

RAINE Event & StyleCaster Raine Celebrated the Release of Volume 11, The Hollywood Issue at the very swank Gansevoort Park Hotel. Epice International, Poken, Vada Spa and Gansevoort Park Hotel were all sponsors for the quarterly invite-only event.

ssa

eli imi, M M e t f Hau iends der o Foun (L) and Fr ai Math

Founder of Tie Society, Otis Mason Collins (R) and FiancĂŠ

StyleCaster celebrated their list of "50 Most Stylish New Yorkers 2012" with a very hip party on the rooftop of Catch restaurant in the Meatpacking District. 44

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Be healthy! Inside, and out.

Healthy skin starts with proper skin care Living a healthy lifestyle involves making the correct choices when it comes to nutrition, but what about your skin? The skin is the largest organ of the body, designed to protect you from the environment, eliminate waste and is important in Vitamin D production. Épicé products use patented technology to maximize the benefit of its natural ingredients. Use épicé® products to protect, achieve and maintain healthy skin.

After all, healthy skin is beautiful skin.

ÉPICÉ INTERNATIONAL, LLC www.epiceinternational.com (877) 374-2314 Rai n e M a g a z i n e - V o l u m e 1 2

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VADA MAKES IT EASY! www.vadaspa.com 212-206-1572 387 Avenue of the Americas New York, NY 10014 Free manicure with an online purchase Code: RAINEMAG info@vadaspa.com twitter.com/vadaspa www.facebook.com/VadaSpaFan


B EA U T Y 

Regenerate and Innovate: Beauty Re-Defined With all the abundant technology in the world today, it is no surprise that the beauty world has moved to the forefront of innovation. The long history of businesses formulating beauty products has included both natural and artificial means, but as of late many brands are returning to their roots - plant roots that is.  Beauty companies have taken hold of scientific advancement in order to create luxury products with natural key ingredients from some of the finest elements on earth. Many are using plant essences to bring beauty buffs the crème de la crème, offering their bounty to consumers eager for a natural change.  A brave new world where science meets nature is the wave of a very beautiful and ultra luxurious future.

C h anel’ s SUBLIMAGE

Chanel has done it again. They have researched the world over in order to produce a line that defines indulgence and well-being for the most discerning of tastes. What makes this an innovation in luxury?  The key ingredient is Planifolia, extracted from the fresh fruit of Madagascar’s Vanilla Planifolia plant. Chanel’s SUBLIMAGE line allows your skin to regain vitality and radiate with a glow that enhances your beauty. The SUBLIMAGE SERUM has a silky texture that penetrates the skin to restore and renew cells. SUBLIMAGE FLUID

KI E H L ’ S MIDNIGHT RECOVERY

photo: www.secondcitystyle.com

photo: copious.com

By Kia Rodriguez

As is the case with most items from Kiehl’s, this amazingly natural product line has no parabens, fragrance, mineral oil or silicone. Harsh chemicals tend to irritate many skin types, causing chafing and breakouts.  With Midnight Recovery, the job is done with essential oils and botanicals that are proven to replenish and repair the skin while you sleep.  By working with the body’s natural nocturnal activity it repairs and restores your face to its heightened glory.  Midnight Recovery Concentrate is a star product, with its lightweight formula 98.9% naturally derived. Our recommended

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is an ultra-smooth gel to use year-round that will leave your skin feeling pampered with each use.  SUBLIMAGE La Crème, with its price tag in excess of $500, is created using a unique purification system to produce a powerfully potent elixir that leaves your skin glowing radiantly. Our recommended beauty buy from the line is the SUBLIMAGE ESSENTIAL COMFORT CLEANSER that completely removes dirt, oil, and makeup using Camellia and Jojoba oils.  It gently cleanses and preps the face for the varying SUBLIMAGE Skincare line.

beauty buy from this line is Midnight Recovery Eye. This little addition to the 160 yearold Kiehl’s brand will have you saying good riddance to the days of carrying excess baggage under tired eyes.  It removes the puffiness, fine lines and dark circles that creep up on us as our busy lives take over.  Don’t be fooled by the tiny packaging.  Just a small amount lightly dabbed (not rubbed!) under the eyes is enough for this crème to revitalize the delicate area.  After a 16-hour day, Midnight Recovery Eye will have you looking rested and refreshed for that early morning conference or presentation.

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BE AU T Y

the secret behind GLOWING SKIN By Dr. Michael Spicer

Model: McKey Sullivan @ PRODIGY Make-up Artist : Jai Williams using MAC Pro Photographer: Manny Roman


skin to stay balanced. Exercise also helps relieve stress that can lead to acne, breakouts, and rosacea. N utrition: A healthy, balanced diet of fruits and vegetables high in anti-oxidants and vitamins such as Vitamins A, B, C and E is recommended. Avoid processed foods as well as foods high in carbohydrates and sugar. In addition, be sure to drink at least eight glasses of water daily to help hydrate your skin from the inside out. Lifestyle: Creating a healthier lifestyle increases your skin’s

Y

ability to shine. One of the most damaging habits for the skin is smoking. Besides its carcinogenic properties, smoking decreases

our skin is your natural defense against any harmful

elements in our environment. Each time we go out we are exposed to more harmful ultraviolet rays from the sun than ever before, and aerosol allergens, pollens, grasses and mold are just a few allergens that contribute to damage over years of exposure. Because of this, changes in the weather can wreak havoc on skin cells, especially during cold or dry windy days, causing longterm damage when not properly protected. Here are some simple steps to work into your daily routine that can help you protect and achieve healthy, glowing skin.

the blood supply to the skin, limiting the nutrients and oxygen the skin needs to stay healthy. This often results in giving the skin a grayish, withered look that takes away from its ability to glow. Smoking also causes the skin’s dead epidermal cells to be more “sticky” clogging pores and causing blackheads. Sun protection. It is estimated that 80% of “aging” skin is from sun damage over the years. A simple practice of using a daily facial sunscreen (yes daily!) will give you the gift of youthful skin well into your mature years. Ultraviolet light from the sun not only damages the top layer of skin making it more likely to develop skin cancer but it also degenerates the collagen and elastic tissue causing fine lines, wrinkles and eventually milia

Daily Cleanse: A most basic necessity for good skin care is to wash your face twice daily with luke-warm water and a gentle cleanser. Choosing a cleanser specific to your skin type is also important. If you have sensitive skin you should use a gentle cleanser. On the other hand if you have acne-prone or oily skin, simply choose a cleanser with an exfoliate to remove excess sebum, oil and dead skin debris that can accumulate during the day.

and granulomas which can give a bumpy, leathery, weathered look. Using sunscreen dramatically decreases your risks for this to occur. Taking time each day to work these steps into your routine will not only help you fight the harmful environmental challenges we face every day, but allow you to achieve healthy skin that can’t help but glow.

Facial M asks: Using a mask designed for your skin type in your regimen two to three times per week is one of the most important steps to flawless skin. Leaving it on for the recommended time will loosen dead skin cells, allowing the active ingredients to penetrate deep into the skin for added protection throughout your week. Exercise: Aerobic exercise increases the blood supply to the skin boosting the amount of oxygen and nutrients the skin needs to stay healthy. Sweating helps excrete waste products form the body as well as keeps certain hormones necessary for healthy

Michael Spicer, MD, is the Founder of Epice International. He is a board certified dermatologist and dermatopathologist with a degree in biochemistry. Dr. Spicer has a considerable understanding and knowledge of the structure and function of the skin with several years of experience as Medical Director of Aesthetic Centers as well as through running his dermatologic practice and research on Florida’s East Coast. www.epiceinternational.com

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FRE S H FAC E MOD E L

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Make-up and Hair: Derek Medina Wardrobe Styling: Marcela Bravo @ Agency Gerad Artists Photographer: Manny Roman


Model: Asia Anderson Hometown: New York, NY Height: 5'10" Agency: KARIN Models Paris Hobbies: I’m like a house rat. I like to be around my family, party with my friends, make people laugh, and work with my Mime Ministry. Fun Facts: I like to eat peanut butter and jelly sandwiches even though sometimes I’m slightly allergic to peanuts.

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B EA U T Y | F I T N E S S 10 1

Olympian Maik Wiedenbach Delivers Fitness 101  By Heather Ulery

RAINE: What are the best activities outside the gym to get your body in 

T

shape?

wo-time World Cup and Olympic-level swimmer in

Germany, author and Fitness Guru Maik Wiedenbach is one

of the most sought after personal trainers and nutritionists in

New York City. Born and raised in Germany, he moved to the United States after receiving a swimming scholarship to Fordham University. Following his passion, Wiedenbach

founded his company Adler Training, which quickly became a

raging success. Not only a leading expert in the areas of health and fitness, but he is now willing to share his secrets with the

world. With his new book: 101 Fitness Myths, available on Kindle and in print, Wiedenbach delivers what we like to call

‘easy fitness’ to the masses. So get ready for the clouds to

part, the sun to shine and your new beach body to glow!

WIEDENBACH: Being a former swimmer, I almost have to say swimming.

It’s simply a whole body exercise. Swimming is pretty much untouchable as combined cardio and strength workout, but martial arts are great too, especially if you can afford a one-on-one teaching I am not a huge fan of

group fitness, since people are simply too different to do the same workout. But with that being said, anything and everything beats sitting on the couch. RAINE: I love sweets, are there any desserts you can recommend that are guilt free?

WIEDENBACH: Don’t do anything extreme, whatever you pick has to be something you can do for a long time, so eating only cabbage soup isn’t really an option. I personally do not like diets that leave out any

macronutrients, such as fat or carbohydrates. The diet I like most, and find easiest to live by is the Paleo diet. It basically consists of lean meats, leafy

greens, berries, fruit, non-processed foods and a few grains. Basically, all the foods people living during the Stone Age had access to. They are filling, 52

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so you are less likely to overeat. This is something you can live with; versus the fad diets, which can make you gain the weight back right after you lose it.

RAINE: There are so many diets out there, is there a special diet you recommend? 

MAIK: Don’t do anything extreme, whatever you pick has to be something you can do for a long time, so eating only cabbage soup isn’t really an option. I personally do not like diets that leave out any macronutrients,

such as fat or carbohydrates. The diet I like most, and find easiest to live by is the Paleo diet. It basically consists of lean meats, leafy greens, berries, fruit, non-processed foods and a few grains. Basically, all the foods people

living during the Stone Age had access to. They are filling, so you are less likely to overeat. This is something you can live with; versus the fad diets, which can make you gain the weight back right after you lose it. 

RAINE: Summer is coming up quick, what’s the best way to lose weight fast?

WIEDENBACH: First thing, you need to lift weights for the simple reason

that only weight training can change your body; you have to dedicate 20

minutes three times a week. There are four basic movements you need to focus on: squat, lunge, push and pull. If you cover all four, then you have

trained your whole body. So basically pick one squat movement (squat, leg press), one type of lunge (lunge, deadlift), a push (bench press, shoulder

press) and a pull (rows or pull ups). Then perform 3 sets of each movement three times a week. Feel free to mix it up a little. As for food, as mentioned

try only eating foods with one ingredient and cut out processed foods altogether. Stick to oats, chicken, fish, greens, nuts, fruit and steak.  RAINE: Describe your workout and diet plan in a typical day.

WIEDENBACH: Disclaimer: I do this for a living so the average person does not need to go to these extremes. What I do does not necessarily apply to the average person. With that being said, let’s dive in: my diet is pretty

much vegetables and protein. Every meal contains a vegetable and I eat about five meals a day: egg whites, steak, chicken, seafood, green beans,

and broccoli. I add carbohydrates as I see fit and depending on my energy levels. For instance, sometimes I will get sushi or pasta with my wife. As for

training, I work out 5-6 days a week. A typical session is about 50 minutes. I do very little cardio, and mostly weight training.

RAINE: What are your clients like? How would potential clients get in touch with you for personal training?

WIEDENBACH: The clients I work with are all very different in their goals and starting points. I work with people who have injuries such as back

problems, shoulder pain, etc, or people who simply want to lose weight and look great. I also work with people who compete in bodybuilding,

tennis or triathlons. Potential clients can reach me through my website: adlertraining.com or my Facebook fan page, http://www.facebook.com/ Maik.Wiedenbach. 

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Images courtesy of Oberoi Hotels & Resorts.


THE MAN BEHIND THE RISE OF THE CREATIVE CLASS

By Jessica Davis

R

ichard Florida, author of the global best sellers The Rise of the Creative Class and Who’s Your city, is scheduled to release a new book in the coming months entitled The Rise of the Creative Class Revisited in which he takes a deeper look at the forces that are shaping our economy and the way we live today. Florida is well known for his research and theories of the creative class and how today’s creativity is revolutionizing the global economy. His ideas have been used to help in campaigns for companies such as Apple Inc., BMW, IBM and many others as well as numerous cities worldwide in order to help transform their economic prosperity. Currently director of the Martin Prosperity Institute, Professor of Business and Creativity with the Rotman School of Management at the University of Toronto and with Professorships stints at great Universities such as Harvard, MIT, Carnegie Melon, and George Mason, we can see how this modern genius can be in high demand. With those seeking well-researched advice, concepts and inspiration, from problem solving to strategy development, Richard Florida has much to offer leading organizations and thus serves as one of the most sought after speakers. RAINE Magazine recently caught up with Mr. Florida to gain insight on what is coming up in the new book and why his research and analysis of the creative class is so innovative. RAINE: How would you describe your younger self? Richard Florida: Curious, inquisitive, interested – not much different than I am now. RAINE: What did you plan to be as an adult when you were a kid? Richard Florida: Jimi Hendrix was my boyhood idol, as both a guitar-player and an all around musician. I am still more at home in a guitar store than a bookstore. RAINE: Have you ever had a life changing experience? What was it? What happened? Richard Florida: Going to college. It took me out of a working-class environment where boys fought almost everyday and where I had to hide the fact that I was smart. For the first time, I felt like I could be myself. I was free to pursue my interests, and I was surrounded by really interesting people. RAINE: What was your college experience like? Richard Florida: Fantastic! Rutgers College was a terrific experience. I took classes in political science, economics, and urban planning. I played in a band with my brother and some of our friends. I saw great live music, from Bruce Springsteen and the E-Street Band to the Gang of Four and Dexter Gordon (Rutgers has a terrific jazz program). I hung out in great bars at night, discussing everything from music and cities to food with my buddies—one of whom was Mario Batalli. RAINE: How did you come up with the name/category “Creative Class”? Richard Florida: I had a great editor for the book, Bill Frucht. When I sold the book, it was called Work, Life, Time, Place. But my research team kept finding statistics that this group of people who works with their minds and their creativity —what we came to call the Creative Class—was quite large and growing larger all the time. Bill said, if it looks like a class and acts like a class, well, it is a class. By then we were calling the book The Big Morph: The Rise of the Creative Class and How It’s Transforming Work, Leisure, Community and Everyday Life. After the 9/11 attacks I decided to kill The Big Morph, literally at the last minute (though one of the book’s chapters was entitled “The Big Morph: A Rant”). Instead, we called the book The Rise of the Creative Class.

understand what people were calling “post-industrial” society. Most of my work had been focused on companies, high-tech companies or even Japanese companies. I had written two books about this kind of thing with a brilliant sociologist, Martin Kenney. I was living in Pittsburgh, teaching at this phenomenal university, Carnegie Mellon. All around me people were inventing computer technology and Internet search tools and developing cutting edge software, but Pittsburgh, at least at the time, was not becoming anything like Silicon Valley. I guess I started wondering why that was. And then all of a sudden Lycos, one of the early important Internet companies and certainly the best high-tech startup by far that had come out of Carnegie Mellon, moved from Pittsburgh to Boston. Why had that happened? The answer I kept coming back to was people and places—the kinds of places that people, especially, creative people, want to live and work in. Most people in my field were studying the ways that companies power the economy. I said, its time to start looking at people, at creative people and their role in economic development. RAINE: In what ways can/will the Creative Class transform the global economy? Richard Florida: Creativity is already transforming virtually every facet of the global economy. The Creative Class has taken hold in countries across the world. While about a third of Americans are fortunate to do Creative Class work, in Singapore the figure is almost half of the work force. The Creative Class numbers 46 percent of the workforce in the Netherlands, and 45 percent in Switzerland. In Australia, it’s 44.5 percent. RAINE: What do you believe have been some of the effects of the declining economy on the creative class? Richard Florida: I don’t believe the economy is declining. We are undergoing an epochal economic transformation, perhaps the biggest and most fundamental in world history. For most of human history, economies created wealth by harnessing natural resources. During the Industrial Revolution, we added machines and technology. Economists used to say that land, labor and capital were the three factors of production. But now creativity itself has become the most important factor of all. The crisis and economic transformation is more than a financial crisis and more than an economic crisis—it reflects the rise of this new creativity-powered economy, which is supplanting the old industrial order. We are in that strange interregnum when the old order is collapsing and the new order is not yet fully born. A new global economic order is taking shape, but it is still confined within the brittle carapace of the old. RAINE: What are some of the different roles that creativity can play in a person’s life as well as a company’s life? Richard Florida: The cornerstone of my message is that every human being is creative. Creativity – using our creativity – is what gives our lives purpose and meaning. If it showed us anything, the economic crisis showed us the limits of a hyper-consumerist, hyper-branded society. We can’t get true meaning and purpose from buying this product or that one off a department store shelf. Consumption leaves us empty. True purpose and meaning, true happiness comes from doing creative work. RAINE: What are some of the first steps smaller companies can take in creative innovation and setting themselves apart from their competitors? Richard Florida: The best companies – in any and every line of work, from grocery stores to design to manufacturing and high-tech – all do the same things. They harness the collective creativity of their entire workforce, of every single person, from the factory floor to the R&D lab, from the artistic studio to the executive suite. RAINE: Can you give us a quick explanation of “The Geography of Inequality”? Richard Florida: Unfortunately, as with all economic transformations, this one is generating increased inequality. Inequality is the single biggest social challenge we face. And it’s not just class inequality. The inequality between the classes is reflected and reinforced in our geography, in where we live. The classes used to live together. No longer. The different classes live in different places and they live entirely different lives. It’s this class divide that lies behind virtually all of the other divides we see in America and across the world, from the red and blue divides of politics to our differing prospects for health and happiness. RAINE: What can we look forward to in your new book? Richard Florida: Over the past decade creativity has increasingly come to be seen as the motor force in our work, lives, society, and economy. Great talking with you! RAINE: My Pleasure!

RAINE: What led you to your research and analysis of the Creative Class and its potential effects? Richard Florida: I tell the story in the preface to the original edition. For years I had been studying the nature of economic development under capitalism, trying to

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C ULT U R E

W H E N T ECH NOLOGY M EET S CR EATIVIT Y

MEDEA VODKA CREATES A BUZZ!

By Alexis Fedor

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The Illustration is by MARCO SANTANIELLO for Medea Vodka Photos provided by Medea Vodka


With over sixty patents, launching hi-tech ventures, and an impressive technology pedigree including a Ph.D. from the Weizmann Institute of Science, Tim Goldburt invented and created the world’s first beverage bottle with a built-in electronic display, introducing something new and exciting for a top-of-the-line beverage experience. A venture was formed in 2007 to develop, manufacture, market and distribute a new product based on Goldburt’s idea of a “display on a bottle”. The product came to be known as MEDEA, the name that co-founder Matt Sandy came up with as a play-on-words on creativity, “me” plus “idea”, and media. Goldburt oversaw every step of the production process to craft every detail of the product, building twelve different prototypes. One of them was a bottle that could program up to six different messages, 255 characters each, that is freezer-proof, waterproof and with a battery life of up to a year and a half. Imported from Holland, a proprietary formula was developed to go inside the bottle against top three competitors Grey Goose, Ciroq and Belvedere. As an ultra premium vodka, it’s one of the smoothest vodkas around that promises to give no hangovers, a definite selling point for MEDEA. The venture relied on Matt Sandy to oversee every aspect of the business development including product development, manufacturing, supply chain, importing, distribution and marketing. In addition, Sandy has been the creative force behind the national marketing and PR efforts. “This was never about simply making money,” Sandy says passionately. “It was about realizing the inherent value and promise of an incredible invention.”

There were many risks to overcome along the way, and there was no guarantee for a positive reaction to the product. Complicating matters, the venture’s source of funding collapsed, and it appeared all was lost. Rolling up their sleeves, they cut costs and overcame the setback by introducing MEDEA locally on a limited release. Tim and Matt then criss-crossed the nation visiting dozens of wine and spirits distributors to promote MEDEA on a national scale. With no prior liquor industry contacts or experience, they went door to door to liquor retailers and distributors. By 2010, MEDEA Vodka was gaining the attention of national press, media and blogs. A-list celebrities began discovering MEDEA at events, and Sandy performed the role of an ambassador to position MEDEA as a luxury, ultra premium technology vodka brand. Discovered by Suzanna Bowling of the Times Square Chronicles, the MEDEA bottle was soon being autographed by celebrities such as Hugh Jackman for her organization Charities to Benefit, whereby autographed bottles would be donated to the charity of choice of Broadway stars. A big spread for the Super Bowl celebrated the NY Giants victory with the blue LED bottle programmed “Go Big Blue” and “Crush Brady”. An international pop artist drew his rendition of the photograph that appeared in the New York Daily News of Tim and Matt. It went viral on Facebook, highlighting the company’s vision to connect the brand with creative forces in art, music and film. “There has been no script from day one,” says Sandy, “We have relied on creativity and ‘out of the bottle’ thinking.” MEDEA is currently distributed in all major markets including New York, Miami, Chicago, Los Angeles and Las Vegas. It is one of the fastestselling online brands. Future goals include raising awareness for worthy causes, so the brand’s right at the cusp of some very exciting marketing. A line-up of celebrities want to help raise awareness on a national level, and flavors may be introduced into the mix as well. They’re also getting ready to launch a new bottle that allows for photos and videos to be added to the bottle. Buying a bottle of MEDEA is easy: it can be purchased online via www.medeaspirits.com from internet based liquor retailers, or it can be bought in all local liquor stores. If a store does not carry MEDEA, it can order it from its liquor distributor. For those liquor stores that seek to purchase MEDEA in New York, they can contact the order hotline 1-877-RUMEDEA.

FOOD A N YON E ? By Michelle Winters

Deepti Sharma Kapur

& Team

Deepti Sharma Kapur

With a passion for entrepreneurship and a desire to fill a need in the food market, 25-year old Deepti Sharma Kapur founded FoodToEat. com, a web based delivery service that makes street food more accessible.” I started when I was studying in law school, right around the time that gourmet food trucks were coming out.” Kapur saw that people had to wait 20 minutes in line to get anything from a food truck and sought out to change that. “I asked myself how these trucks could receive orders without anything complicated.” FoodToEat.com’s system includes printers ringing like telephones inside a food truck every time an order comes in. The user-friendly interface allows customers to order with ease from a comprehensive list of local eateries. Kapur’s mission is to make food more easily available to anyone and everyone. “We want to go to every major food truck city, for example: Los Angeles and Portland.” The company was founded May 2011 with the help of angel funding from family and friends and celebrated with a site redesign this past February. Besides adding restaurant reservations to their list of services, Kapur has a goal of increasing the company’s user base as well as advertisers. FoodtoEat.com is at the forefront of a trend in making ordering and delivering of food a more enjoyable experience.

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CU LT U R E

FINE ARTIST: NADA JURISIC

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Born in Calgary, Alberta, Canada; Nada has lived in many cities. Much of Nada's art is inspired by her many experiences in all these places. Nada knew she was going to be a painter from the time she was about five years old: “I was fortunate to have come from a family sprinkled with artists on both sides, so everyone deeply understood the need to do one's art and was given the latitude to do so." Many subjects inspire Nada, but she seems to be most drawn to faces. www.nadaart.com

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BU SI N E S S

THE

NEXT LEVEL by David Freschman

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FINANCE

What trends in innovation are Angel Investors looking for in today’s business plans?

Do Your Homework- Research the Angel or Angel Group you are meeting with. Make sure your venture fits in their “wheelhouse” for industry, market and stage of business. Too many times we receive business plans that are too far outside our investment parameters, which are listed on our website. This tells us you didn’t take the time to learn enough about us, which causes us to doubt that you are willing to meet us, halfway. Real Innovation- Too many of today’s startups are only incremental changes to what is already offered in the business world. “We are the same as Company X except we address this market better!” or “Company X is dominating the

Angel

Investing

has

reached

new levels of interest and has even been institutionalized by the recently enacted Jobs Act where CrowdFunding is now permitted, albeit with limitations. As a VC, revised interest in angel investing led me to co-found the ARC Angel Fund in NYC. With over 60 active member investors in a committed fund, we see 30-50 new opportunities each month. We only select a handful to review and meet with. So what are we looking for as we begin the vetting process to invest? Here are a few thoughts to consider in your business plan:

market, but our company can displace them because we WILL attract this market segment!” We see this all time and quickly recognize that these incremental changes or market segmentations don’t necessarily make a strong new business. A company with innovation gives us more to work with and help develop. Size of M arket- Many business plans we receive focus on markets that are too small to attract venture or angel investments. The market your business participates in should be $1 billion or greater, or have a clear opportunity in sight to grow to that size. Financials M atter- Your business plan should have complete cashflow forecasts, sources and use of funds that makes sense. Too many times we see entrepreneurs seeking funding which is not adequate. Your business plan should be constructed to achieve cash flow and breakeven on the amount being sought. It’s not always safe to assume you’ll be able to raise a second round. Also be ready to communicate the value of your company at the beginning, because angels want a sense of what you think your enterprise is worth. Presentation Deck- When given the opportunity to present, make sure your presentation deck mirrors your business plan, but is concise and easily understood. Typically an entrepreneur is allotted 15 minutes for their initial presentation. Focus on the business opportunity, rather than the technology. I have seen too many presentations fail because the entrepreneur focuses on the “whiz bang cool stuff”, rather than how the venture makes money and returns the investment. Exit Strategy- Be prepared to present in the business plan how you are planning to exit the venture. Too many of these sections are vague. Speak to how similar companies or stage companies have exited, to whom and what value. Remember investors are looking for 5 to 7 year maximum horizons until cashing out.

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MANAGEMENT What are some techniques that new CEO’s can use to retain talent in a time where pensions no longer exist?

Here are some ideas: Equity participation through stock options. Emerging companies should consider using stock options to motivate and retain key talent in their organizations. Most employees in the startup world are seeking some form of ownership participation in the event an exit of the business occurs via an acquisition or initial public offering. Stock options address that desire by putting in place a mechanism where a certain percentage of a company (typically 10%-20%) is reserved for distribution by the Board of Directors to employees at rates that are appropriate for their respective responsibilities. A key element to entrepreneurial success is attracting, motivating and retaining a talented team. In most cases, a new CEO does not have the financial resources to pay market compensation to employees even after they receive venture funding for their enterprise. Traditionally,

businesses

used

pensions

Bonus plans. Tying a substantial bonus plan to performance is a key strategy. In our venture-backed companies, we typically build a bonus pool for all employees based on subjective and objective parameters. The key elements that we reward are sales, customer acquisition and cash flow. This is a good strategy to enhance current compensation of employees while driving up company performance.

and their associated vesting to retain their

Non-Financial Benefits. Many of the employees in startup companies are

employees. Pensions are no longer valued as

there for other reasons, which are not solely financial. As a new CEO, you

they once were while most individuals expect

may wish to consider some inexpensive strategies such as:

to have 7-10 jobs in their career (whether or not it is their choice), and will not be able to derive benefits from a traditional pension plan. So how is a new CEO to retain talent in a startup or entrepreneurial environment?

a.

Flexible time! There are many talented individuals who cannot work

full-time in an office due to family constraints or commuting limitations. A new CEO may want to consider having a flexible schedule for employees where they are able to accomplish their responsibilities on a non-traditional timeline. b.

Involvement in industry! Many employees enjoy participating at

industry events. They can be your greatest ambassadors. Having them speak at these events can have a positive impact on your company’s goals as well as give them an added financial bonus. c.

Simple things! Employees today are looking for simple benefits

you may wish to investigate and consider. Coffee and snacks in the office, competitions where prizes like IPads and IPods are awarded and weekly lunches are a few perks to consider at a small cost to you and a great benefit to them.

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MARKETING How should a new company best optimize a Publicist?

Many entrepreneurs believe that PR is expensive and that they can do it on their own. However, I am a strong believer that you hire people to do what they do best and the companies should focus on the aspects of their enterprises. Hiring a publicist can change the dynamics of the launch, resulting in achieving the targeted growth of a company. So here are some rules an entrepreneur should consider when selecting a publicist or PR firm. Hire a Publicist who understands entrepreneurs and startups! The startup and venture community is an industry unto itself. Your publicist should understand how the growth economy works, be familiar with the venture capital process and know the startup players in your industry. They should also have experience working with relevant publications and contacts for placement. Hire a Publicist who understands the “investment” component! Lawyers, accountants and consultants understand that startups have limited budgets and work within those Entrepreneurs and start-ups are at the forefront of today’s economy with innovative business concepts, strategies, products, services and technologies. So how does the consumer and marketplace learn of their service? How does an entrepreneur or startup effectively get the word out about their new concept or business? Effective PR is one essential strategy and answer.

constraints. The goal is to grow with the startup. Your publicist should act the same by “investing” in the startup with reduced fees with the goal that as the enterprise grows their publicity services and fees will grow along with them. Hire a Publicist who can get you exposure at industry relevant conferences! Work with a publicist who can get you speaking engagements at conferences so you quickly emerge as the “expert”. As the founding CEO, the more your exposure increases via speaking engagements the more credible your company and its associated value will become. Hire a Publicist who understands your business and technology! A publicist becomes a “part” of your company. When they are pitching your enterprise the media outlet will ask questions about the industry, technology and competition. If they can’t answer those questions it will play very unfavorably upon your business and positioning. Hire a Publicist who understands that too much exposure can have diminishing returns! When seeking publicity, a company or its CEO should recognize that there is a fine line between good exposure and too much exposure. If a startup company has too much exposure “out of the gates” before real accomplishments are achieved it can have negative consequences. The venture and entrepreneurial community will start to wonder why you aren’t focusing on your core business.

David J. Freschman, the leading early-stage business expert and top venture capitalist, is the Managing Principal of Innovation Capital Advisors. www.innovationcapital.com 70

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photographed by Michael Scott Slosar

www.amberpatton.com

info@amberpatton.com


| roz tayger | work . travel . life for him & her www.roztayger.com


T H E NE XT LEVEL: INTELLECTUAL DESIGN T h e Pow e r of t h e T r a d e ma r k By Mariessa Terrell

Federal trademarks provide other tangible benefits, including 1.

The registration of your Federal Trademark, which

2.

The option to bring your infringement claim to federal court

3.

The ability to obtain trademark registration in a foreign

establishes ownership of your mark.

if ever necessary. What’s the Difference? Consignment shopping has taught me one thing. When the labels have been removed, even Holly

Golightly cannot distinguish a Givenchy frock from an Oscar de la La Renta. When you get right down to it, the difference

between two perfectly tailored black dresses, two authentic

alligator pumps and two chic wide brimmed hats is the brand name.

country more easily.

4. Permission to file with US Customs Service to prevent importation of counterfeit goods.

The rights provided by a federal trademark make them indispensable

Today, the marketplace for similar fashion goods at all price

points is saturated. Therefore, it is imperative for designers to find creative and cost effective ways to distinguish their fashion products from others. An easy way to distinguish one black

dress from another is by looking at the label or brand name

and the reasonable up front trademark registration costs make them

affordable. With all of the potential risks brand owners face today, taking precaution to not let anyone misappropriate your image can protect your brand and grant you the freedom to market your product with peace of mind.

affixed to the garment.

Fashion leaders like Tom Ford, Ralph Lauren, Vera Wang, and

Rachel Zoe have created strong brands that resonate with their niche markets. These brands tell a story, and speak to

a specific consumer personality. One reason these designers are so successful is that they have established brand images

so arresting that consumers feel compelled to buy whatever

Mariessa Terrell is an intellectual property attorney, brander and

founder of SBC Law Group with over 10 years experience providing intellectual law

clients

property

services as

to

diverse

as Lockheed Martin Corporation,

Gloria

Establishing a strong brand, however, is not enough to

and

Guido

must also invest time and resources to protect their valuable

starting her own firm,

legal to copy fashion designs, just not the trademark, or brand

as

product is offered.

Gelfand & Associates

guarantee success in todays global market. Brand owners

Lombardi. Prior

“image” from misappropriation. Under current US law, it is

Mariessa

name with logo, used to identify them.

Examining

Federal trademarks have become the easiest and most cost

to register thousands of fashion brands including, Revlon, L’oreal,

effective way for fashion purveyors, designers and creative

developers to protect their brand image. The government fee for registering a federal trademark ranges from $275 to $325

depending on the type of products offered. Plus, many law firms now offer flat fees for trademark assistance starting at $800, including government fees.

to

worked

Trademark

Attorney

with the United States Patent and Trademark Office and helped Estee Lauder, Balenciaga, Chanel, Dooney and Burke, Avon and countless others.

www.sbclawgroup.com www.fashiontrademarks.biz

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T E CH TOYS By Milan Rowson

LG LMS-100 Don’t put away your mouse! Just because you have not used your mouse due to touch screens and stylus does not mean they are obsolete. LG introduces a Mouse Scanner that is a two-in-one mouse and scanner. This unique gadget allows you to scan all your documents, big or small, in any language, right to your computer, saving you time and energy. If you ever wanted a mouse, this is the one to get. Price: $129.99

Logitech Ultrathin Keyboard Cover Multifunction is the latest craze in the tech world and Logitech delivers. Its Ultrathin Keyboard Cover is a two-in-one keyboard and cover. Its sleek black keyboard brings elegance to technology, and makes your iPad a fashion statement. Don’t worry about damaging its design because with the keyboard face down on your iPad, it becomes a cover. For $99.99 do yourself a favor by turning your iPad into a notebook and protecting it when you’re finished. Price: $99.99

Sharper Image Motorized Tie Rack Admit it! You hang your ties on a hanger or place them in a dresser drawer. Sharper Image has found the coolest solution to all your tie problems with its motorized tie rack. Now your ties can hang easily and neatly without conflicting with other clothes. It comes with a light that shines on your ties allowing you to make the perfect tie choice. It also comes with eight belt racks, making finding your belts easier. Price: $39.99

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iPhone / iPad Remote Controlled Helicopter Anyone who loves tech toys can never fall out of love with a remote controlled helicopter. Sadly, the last time you heard of this gadget was before you heard the term wireless. Good news, the gadget you always loved is back and ready to be controlled by your iPhone or iPad. The fun involved with a remote controlled helicopter is selfexplanatory. Feel like a kid again this summer using your iPhone or iPad to control your remote controlled helicopter. Price: $129.99

Weather Wireless Speaker This speaker is here to stay. Tired of replacing your old speakers because they had a drop of water spilled on them or cannot take the humidity of the atmosphere? Tire no more; Sharper Image introduces the Weather Wireless Speaker that is ready to withstand the outdoors. Do not expect to take it under water, due expect them to withstand barbeque sauce from your next barbeque. Price: $99.99

Sony eReader Move over Kindle, the latest in electronic reading is here. Sony continues to provide superior electronics by introducing itself to the ereading competition. Sony’s eReader comes with built in Wi-Fi that lets users download books from their local library. If one is not impressed yet, it is the world’s lightest eReader and can hold a single charge for a long as a month. Why not learn something new or get lost in your imagination with the help of Sony’s eReader. Price: $129.99

Electric Powered Scooter Vespa, meet your new competition. Sharper Image takes its technology into the vehicle realm with the introduction of its Electric Powered Scooter. This is no ordinary or mere scooter. With two small wheels in the back, and one large wheel in the front, it has the ability to go on mountain trails or the mean streets of New York City. It folds up for storage space and has a locking security system that keeps it compact and protected. Price: $2.499.99

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Photos Courtesy of Daymond John

RAINEMAKER

BUS I N ES S

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Investor, Author and Entrepreneur Founder of FUBU, Daymond John, Does it All!

By Nova Lorraine

D

aymond John has always had an entrepreneurial spirit. At just six-years old he was selling pencils and by the time he was 10, shoveling snow in winter and raking leaves in summer was the way he made money to buy candy. Now, at age 43, Daymond John is an extremely successful American entrepreneur, investor, author, branding strategist, and motivational speaker. He is world-renown for founding the global fashion brand, FUBU, as well as for his role on the hit ABC business-reality TV series, Shark Tank. Raised in the NYC borough of Queens, John developed a love for fashion through an intense fascination with hip-hop in his adolescent years. John took note that the new hip-hop movement had a uniform of Adidas and Kangol hats. Set on creating a new trend within the urban music community, John sought out the help of his biggest support system, his mom, and began brainstorming ways to make an impact on the culture. “My mother sewed and made her own clothing, she had a strong sense of style. I would see her late at night cutting patterns on the floor and sewing things.” He began to make his own hats from home and sold them in front of the New York Coliseum, making about $800 on that first day. That was the start of something huge for the business mogul-in-training and the rest is history. Raine magazine had the opportunity to speak with entrepreneur Daymond John about his struggles, journey to success, and life at the top of the Shark Tank. RAINE: How did you launch FUBU, what were the financial circumstances? JOHN: FUBU had a slow growth. I started it in 89 and I closed it three times until 92, and from 92 it grew more quickly through 97. We started looking for financing around 94 and got turned down from 27 banks and mortgaged my home. Then we turned my home into a factory for two years and slept next to the sewing machines. We put an ad in the newspaper and then found financing. Then we found a private investor connected with Samsung America. They liked the fact that we had sales, a large amount of people buying it, and a lot of rappers wearing it. RAINE: What was it like growing up, did your family have any influence on the start up of FUBU? JOHN: My father being from Trinidad came over here at about 14 years old. He was a computer programmer at that time and he would come home and he was very hard on me about schoolwork. He was a guy that I knew but I didn’t know well, he was a very strong father figure but not so nurturing. My mother worked just as hard as my father did. She always had a business on the side. My parents divorced when I was around 12 years old and I became the man of the house. Eventually, after FUBU’s success I was happy to see things grow and progress. I no longer had to depend on factories and people - it became a real brand. The PR for FUBU was word of mouth, besides the actual pieces. We would put FUBU shirts on various rappers appearing in videos and on magazines.

RAINE: Tell me a little about your hobbies and interests outside of the office. JOHN: I’m a big outdoors guy and would describe myself as an avid fisherman and snow boarder. I love motorcycles. My favorite foods are seafood and eggplant parmesan. My favorite musicians are Fleetwood Mac, Prince, Bob Marley, Maxwell, Stevie Wonder, and Michael Jackson. RAINE: What do you love most about being an entrepreneur? JOHN: What I love most about being an entrepreneur is being responsible for my own actions, whether they are good or bad. RAINE: Deciding to get started in Shark Tank turned out to be a huge success, tell us about how you got started in that, and more about the show. JOHN: I never check my office phone, but one day I did and to my surprise, I received a call from Mark Burnett’s office. His message informed me that he was shooting this show called Shark Tank, which would loosely be the American version for the international show, Dragon’s Den. Mark Burnett went on to explain that I would be shelling out $1million to $2 million of my own money each season. Although initial apprehension set in, I wanted to diversify my portfolio so I took a shot at it. The other “Sharks” and I invest in the best products and businesses that America has to offer. We give budding entrepreneurs the chance to make their dreams come true and possibly make a business deal that will make them a millionaire. RAINE: Who inspires you, who is your biggest supporter and what was your greatest struggle? JOHN: My fellow Sharks, my kids and a lot of people around me inspire me. My mother was my biggest supporter. My greatest struggle was to find financing and good partners. RAINE: And lastly, what are your future goals? JOHN: Doing everything that I like and also trying to educate as many entrepreneurs as I can. For more information on Daymond John you can visit his site at: daymondjohn.com or @thesharkdaymond at twitter.com

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I NT ER N AT I O NA L

Sunny Fong – VAWK & VAWKKIN photographer George Pimentel by Marilyn R. Wilson

Fashion Designer Sunny Fong has labelled 2012 the “Year of Growth” and expansion is in the air. This uber-talented artist’s high-end couture garments have already made appearances at the Cannes International Film Festival, the Grammy’s and the People’s Choice Awards. His signature luxury line – VAWK – is selling at The Bay in an exclusive boutique alongside famous labels such as Erdem and Arthur Mendonça. The list of private clients wanting custom work is constantly growing. But high demand by fans for a more accessible ready-to-wear line could no longer be denied. In March, VAWKKIN was successfully launched as well as an announcement made of plans to develop an e-tail store. And this is only the beginning. Sunny Fong has always been drawn to fashion. In high school he even created prom dresses for friends. But his sister was already working in the industry, so the choice was made to enter the Image Arts Program at Ryerson with an eye on working in film. Throughout the challenging course work it became increasingly clear this was not the right path After completing his first full length feature film which was 7 years in the making, and a life-changing personal challenge, he realized his love for fashion was stronger and his creative process required a pace more suitable to his work style. The answer was clear. “Why am I not doing what I really want to do? I need to go into fashion.” With no formal training, Fong quickly developed his own techniques while intensively studying Armstrong’s book on pattern drafting. The learning curve was steep. His first VAWK collection was released in 2004 in an old house with the feel of a French salon. “It was very intimate. Because I was doing visuals, I had access to all these props. The theme was equestrian, so there were huge twigs and branches down the centre aisle with fresh pears hanging off them.” With positive reviews in hand, the designer offered collections for several more seasons until the economic downturn forced a hiatus. Two years later fate came calling in the form of Project Runway Canada. The pressures of the show created a trial by fire that honed Fong as a designer. A lifelong tendency to shyness was the first to go. Then came the important realization that you shouldn’t get


caught up over thinking things. Difficult challenges pulled him out of the box and working alongside other amazing artists put him in a competitive atmosphere that drove him to produce his best work. “It made my technique better because I had to do everything on the spot. Creatively I learned when I run into problems and have doubts to just trust my instincts or I’m wasting time.” Winning was the catapult that relaunched his brand. Fong has one talent that firmly sets him apart – the ability to find unique ideas everywhere. Past collections have been inspired by Polynesia, cars and automobile design and even insects. Each season it’s a daunting process to sift through all the possibilities and pick just one concept to develop. “This year was really tough because we had too many ideas. They fall in and out, but when I finally focus on one and am in the moment, it just flows.” Unusual also is his approach to production. The luxury VAWK line is produced in his studio of only three. The designer is very hands on throughout the entire process, ensuring that each garment is finished to his high couture standards. VAWK F/W 2012 is called “Sci-Fi Samurai.” and evolved from the concept of the uniform in Japanese culture and science fiction. Clean lines combined with intricate tailoring; a mainly black palette alternated with a few surprise sparks of colour and shine; and accents created with fur detailing or laser cut leather all define this collection’s strong, yet feminine feel. The new VAWKKIN ready-towear line was influenced by men’s wear and is sure to be a hit with professional women. The palette was kept to mostly black and grey with accents provided by one pop of electric blue, a textured woven, a sheer reptile print and leather detailing. Both lines are produced with his client firmly in mind. “They ‘re professional women who take care of themselves and want to look great. They’re not afraid to stand out.” What’s next on the horizon for Sunny Fong? “The brand is already established, but it’s that continual process of making it a household name that defines our direction. Launching VAWKKIN put us on the map even more. Next is the international market.” For more information you can check out his website at www.vawk.ca.

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