Rap star Cardi B gives birth to daughter Kulture

NEW YORK: Cardi B, who has quickly risen to become one of the most prominent women in hip-hop, has become a mother, announcing Wednesday the birth of daughter Kulture Kiari Cephus.

The 25-year-old New York rapper broke the news on Instagram where she posted a picture of herself pregnant, nude and tattooed in a room full of flowers and said her daughter was born Tuesday.

Cardi B, who previously revealed the baby’s gender, had the child with fellow rapper Offset, one-third of the hard-living Atlanta hip-hop trio Migos. He has three other children from previous relationships.

The baby’s name clearly reflects her father, who was born as Kiari Kendrell Cephus. Migos has put out albums entitled “Culture” and “Culture II”.

Cardi B has become one of the biggest new stars on the US musical landscape since the runaway success last year of her song “Bodak Yellow”, which touches on her former life making ends meet as a stripper.

A Bronx native whose real name is Belcalis Almanzar, Cardi B recently returned to number one on the US singles chart with “I Like It”, which nods musically to her Latin heritage.

Cardi B initially kept her pregnancy under wraps before showing off her baby bump in an April television performance on “Saturday Night Live”.

She went ahead afterwards with a performance at Coachella, the leading US music festival, where she briefly twerked despite her belly on a stage whose pole dancers alluded to her past.

She recently confirmed reports that she secretly married Offset. Cardi B — whose debut album is entitled “Invasion of Privacy” — voiced anger at the news coming out but said, “at least ya can stop saying I had a baby out of wedlock”. — AFP

US designer Spade mourned at hometown funeral

CHICAGO: Friends and loved ones said goodbye Thursday to American fashion designer Kate Spade at a funeral in Kansas City, Missouri, birthplace of the 55-year-old who committed suicide two weeks ago.

Spade was one of the biggest names in American fashion, known especially for her sleek handbags.

An additional tragedy befell the family hours before the late-afternoon service, as Spade’s “heartbroken” 89-year-old father died at his home in the Midwestern US city.

The family said Earl Brosnahan had been in failing health.

Mourners gathered at Our Lady of Perpetual Help Parish Redemptorist Church on a rainy, dark afternoon, but The Kansas City Star reported that some of Spade’s school friends carried signature handbags of the designer whose use of bright colors and prints proved a hit with career women.

“She was incredibly kind and had a very memorable laugh,” a friend, Margie Morrison, told The Star.

Before getting into fashion design, Spade worked as a journalist, including a stint as accessories editor at Mademoiselle magazine.

She launched her Kate Spade label in 1993 with husband Andy Spade.

More than a decade ago, Spade sold her business and later launched the luxury line Frances Valentine.

Spade’s body was found June 5 in her New York apartment.

“She was actively seeking help for depression and anxiety over the last five years, seeing a doctor on a regular basis and taking medication for both depression and anxiety,” her husband Andy Spade said in a statement carried by The New York Times earlier this month.

Spade’s father died Wednesday night surrounded by family, according to a statement the family released to The Star.

“He had been in failing health of late and was heartbroken over the recent death of his beloved daughter,” the family said. — AFP

Naomi Campbell and Monica Bellucci light up Milan fashion week

MILAN: Iconic supermodel Naomi Campbell and Italian star Monica Bellucci on Saturday injected Hollywood-octane oomph into the second day of Milan men’s fashion week, sporting sizzling men’s suits teamed with skyscraper stilettos for Dolce&Gabbana.

With an over-the-top gilt and baroque decor glittering in the background, the 48-year-old Campbell was a vision from top to bottom from her elegant black hat with a white band to her sparkling silver heels.

She wore a classic pinstripe suit with a carefully mismatched bow tie adorning her crisp white shirt.

The catwalk celebrated love in all shapes and sizes – heterosexual, gay, couples with children, cougars and sugar daddies – sending women and men, women and women, men and men, women and toy boys and older men and their trophy conquests down the ramp in eye-popping colours screaming Florida.

Bellucci showed off a three-piece coal black suit with a wide lapel, teetering on vertiginous heels with her hands in her pockets.

The younger models were heartthrobs of the Millennials – a target group for the house – including actor Cameron Dallas, Chinese singer and actor Karry Wang and Kailand Wander, the son of US music legend Stevie Wonder.

Apart from Campbell and Bellucci’s suits, the other offerings bore the quirky, sassy D&G stamp: suits encrusted with precious stones or layered with dazzling silver and gold embroidery that the Maison put down to a “Gothic inspiration.”

Snakes motifs and neon shades

Versace also opted for full-blast – but far younger – star power, leading with current top model Bella Hadid. Both the boys and girls wore outfits bearing the brand’s trademark snake motif, as well as head-to-toe fluorescent green and pink combinations.

Trousers were in plaid and shorts were both baggy or tight and some were asymmetrical. There were letterbox red cardigans emblazoned with a crown and Donatella Versace said the collection catered to three kinds of men: a “street style” for stars, another for dandies and a third for “leaders.”

“The Versace man is not ordinary, he is watched and spoken of,” she said.

Milan will showcase 28 ready-to-wear collections to reveal the Spring-Summer 2019 lines.

Among the major Italian names showing between now and Monday are Versace, Dolce&Gabbana, Prada and Giorgio Armani.

The overseas fashion houses taking part include Britain’s Stella McCartney, Canada’s Dsquared2 and Germany’s Philipp Plein.

McCartney is returning to Milan after a four-year absence and will close the fashion week on Monday evening. — AFP

Milan men’s fashion week shows its feminine side

MILAN: Italian fashion houses Alberta Ferretti and Ermenegildo Zegna kicked off Men’s Fashion Week in Milan on Friday with a rather feminine feel.

After London Men’s Fashion Week wrapped up on Monday, Milan picked up the reins, with 28 ready-to-wear shows to reveal the Spring-Summer 2019 lines.

But the women are muscling in to Milan men’s week, with 13 co-ed catwalks and another two women-only shows.

“We are living in a huge evolutionary moment regarding the concept of men’s and women’s fashion,” said Carlo Capasa, head of Italy’s national chamber of fashion.

“That barrier doesn’t exist any more, the fashion week calendar is responding to that reality,” he told AFP.

“Out of affection we are keeping the idea of still calling it men’s fashion week, but in reality, this barrier has already fallen.”

After several difficult years for the Italian fashion industry, Milan has regained it’s joie de mode.

The sector saw turnover grow by 3.2% last year, to 94 billion euros, (RM436 billion) according to the Confindustria Moda federation.

The growth rate was double that of Italy’s GDP, Carpasa said.

The first show of men’s week was by the Ermenegildo Zegna house, whose models paraded along a mirrored bridge and against the backdrop of a wonderful sunset outside the impressive Mondadori publishing house HQ.

Italian designer Alessandro Sartori produced a contemporary wardrobe, with a luxury street-sports look using cashmere, silk and mesh with khaki, pink and pale blue to the fore.

The three-and-a-half day programme at the Milan Fashion week is jam-packed.

Among the major Italian names showing between now and Monday are Versace, Dolce&Gabbana, Prada and Giorgio Armani.

The overseas fashion houses taking part include Britain’s Stella McCartney, Canada’s Dean and Dann Catten and Germany’s Philipp Plein.

McCartney is returning to Milan after a four-year absence and will close the fashion week on Monday evening. — AFP