Life and Style wRap: Oprah and the new Kate Moss
Oprah's fryer tweet, postal service fashion, and the British model cause such a buzz

MANILA, Philippines – Here are Life & Style stories you might have missed from the week of February 18 to 22.

Shares of French fryer-maker soar after Oprah’s tweet endorsement

FRYER FAN. Oprah Winfrey tweeted her love for the T-Fal Actifry  by appliances maker Seb. Photo from Oprah Winfrey Twitter accounts (@oprah)

If Twitter can start revolutions, it can definitely sell fryers.

Shares of French appliances group Seb soared on Tuesday, February 19, after Oprah Winfrey tweeted that its low-oil fryer had “changed my life.”

Talking about star tweet power, the American television personality has 16,836,120 followers as of the time this article was written.

Seb stocks were up 4.05% to 62.42 euros in midday trading on the Paris stock exchange, the highest it has been in 6 months.

Winfrey’s exact tweet reads, “This machine…T-Fal actifry has changed my life. And they’re not paying me to say it” and was accompanied by a picture of herself holding the appliance.

She later posted a photograph of French fries made with the machine, saying enthusiastically that they were “delicious with my veggie burger.”

Postal service fashion

YOU'VE GOT FASHION MAIL. A U.S. Postal Service employee dressed in a weather-proof jacket is inspiration for the men's clothing line the government agency has just launched. Screengrab from Youtube video (HuffPostLive)

What do you do when you’re losing money? You launch a fashion line.

At least, that’s the tactic of the United States Postal Service (USPS) when it announced on February 20 that it has signed a licensing deal with apparel company Wahconah Group Inc to sell clothing and accessories.

“This agreement will put the Postal Service on the cutting edge of functional fashion,” corporate licensing manager Steven Mills said in a statement.

“The main focus will be to produce Rain Heat & Snow apparel and accessories using technology to create ‘smart apparel’ — also known as wearable electronics.”

The government-owned agency that delivers almost 40% of the world’s mail, tripled its losses in 2012, losing $15.9 billion due to tough competition and what it calls burdensome and unfair retirement funding requirements.

Wahconah will set up a showroom in New York City’s garment district to showcase the fashion creations that will eventually be sold in “premier department and specialty stores,” said USPS.

Men’s clothes and accessories will be available in 2014. A women’s line will be launched eventually.

Milan fashion week kicks off despite recession

Despite the looming financial crisis that has hit the Italian fashion industry hard and the general election from February 24 to 25, Milan fashion week kicked off with pomp, glitter and glamor as usual.

First to sashay down fashion week was Gucci’s autumn-winter collection, a luxurious play of gowns of feathers, ferns and netting that evoked exotic birds.

Leather, python and metallic sheens dominated the collection. Skin-tight outfits, fishnet stockings with a back seam and sky-high heels completed the noir and fetish look.

Gucci designer Frida Giannini said, “The Gucci woman… is steely yet sexy, defining her discipline with femme fatale vices.”

Frankie Morello designers Pierfrancesco Gigliotti and Maurizio Modica brought in “an army of super-feminine, mysterious femmes fatales” to the runway wearing ruthlessly slashed mini hot pants, sculpted jackets and full-length dresses embellished with shards of mirror.

Alberta Ferretti’s show brought in a softer sort of femininity with an array of ivory, black and white floor-length dresses, or ruffled skirts, worn with long-sleeved shirts and gem-studded cross earrings.

The weekend of February 24 to 25 will bring Bottega Veneta, Roberto Cavalli, Jil Sander, Emporio Armani and Dolce & Gabbana and Missoni to the runway. On Monday, February 25, fashion week will close its doors with John Richmond and Giorgio Armani.

Despite the pomp of fashion week, the Italian fashion industry is still reeling from the damage done by Italy’s 20-year recession.

According to the Chamber of Fashion, the industry’s turnover was an estimated 60 billion euros ($80 billion) in 2012, down 5% from 2011.

Meet the next Kate Moss

THE NEXT KATE MOSS? Cara Delevingne smoulders with her gamine looks and enchants with her fun personality. Photo from Cara Delevingne Facebook page

Move over Kate Moss, Cara Delevingne is in the house.

International fashion elite were all abuzz at London Fashion Week last February 15 to 19 when 20-year-old model Delevingne sashayed down the runway.

Her petite frame of 5 feet and 9.5 inches, blonde hair and elfin features drew comparisons to her idol, British supermodel Kate Moss.

The rising model walked the runways of the fashion week for Burberry, Topshop Unique, Peter Pilotto, and Issa London delighting photographers, critics and fashion-watchers with her distinctive dark eyebrows.

She has been the face of British luxury clothing line group Burberry since 2010 and has also appeared in advertisements for Chanel, while also taking part in catwalk shows for major designers.

Watch this interview with Cara Delevingne:

In 2012, she was named Model of the Year by the British Fashion Council and was the cover girl for British Vogue’s March 2013 edition.

Alexandra Shulman, editor-in-chief of British Vogue says Delevingne’s “very individual look” and bright personality explain her success.

She says, “Cara seems to convey that; it’s a kind of spirit of fun and individuality…She’s not conventional, she’s little, short, she’s got a quite quirky face, that’s what I like about her.”

Yasmin Le Bon, a model in the 1980s and 1990s, says, “She’s not somebody who sinks into the background; you always notice her.”

Delevingne is overwhelmed by all the praise and success going her way.

She says, “I am very lucky to be where I am now but I want to do other things as well and…even being mentioned in the same sentence as her is like, come on, amazing, so it’s just weird.”

On becoming the next Kate Moss, she says, “I don’t mind it, I just don’t think I am at all like her, no one can ever be her. She’s incredible, she’s a supermodel.”

After conquering fashion, Delevingne wants to conquer movies as well. She’s already had a good start with a cameo role in the 2012 film “Anna Karenina” by British director Joe Wright.

Prada transforms housewives into Bond girls

Naughty librarian is so last season. Prada introduces a new kind of woman: the housewife turned Bond girl.

Last February 21, Prada unleashed a lethally seductive look that gives a powerful twist to the classic hourglass dress.

The new collection featured checkered dresses in red and white or baby blue, cinched at the waist by wide or slim gold or silver belts, but slit open at the neckline as if ripped by an amorous 007.

A brown fur jacket was paired with a red leather skirt and flat black shoes. There were also little black dresses with vertical stripes in red and green or wide skirt hems in red or blue.

The setting was sexy and mysterious with the runway flanked by walls on which video images were projected showing a mysterious woman, in silhouette, who lingered at the doorway of her house, running her hands through her hair and looking wistfully out down the street.

Perhaps she was waiting for Bond or perhaps he was waiting for her. –With reports by Pia Ranada/

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