All the Rage
Musings on the culture of keeping up appearances
British retailer cashes in on #TheDress color phenomenon

While the rest of the world continues to debate whether #TheDress is blue and black, or white and gold, Roman Originals, the British retailer that sells the dress, is cashing in. 

The bodycon dress, which features strips of blue material and black lace (or white and gold depending on how you see it),  sells for 50 British pounds, or around $77.13. The dress was first available in November 2014, and comes in white and black, pink and black and red and black. White and gold is not available. 

Since the recent Tumblr photo of the dress was posted online, spurring the debate over the color of the dress, sales on the website have gone up 347%, a Roman Originals representative told

People are visiting the site to see the dress, then sticking around to shop. 

"Traffic has been up by 2,000% and continues to grow," Ian Johnson, creative manager for Roman Originals told The Times in an email. "At the moment we’re basing our sales estimates against Black Friday, and it’s looking as...

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Why some people see #TheDress as white and gold, rather than blue and black

Is #TheDress blue and black, or white and gold? The world has been locked in an intense debate since a photo of a dress from British retailer Roman Originals was recently posted on Tumblr

Some people see the dress as black and blue. Others see it as white and gold. According to the store website, it's blue and black. 

Taylor Swift says the dress is blue and black. So does Justin Bieber. This should be enough to close the case for good. But for those who are still skeptical, i.e. the people screaming it's actually white and gold, here's why you may see the dress differently. 

According to Pantone, the world's leading authority on color, the human eye and brain work together to turn light into color. The retina in your eye is covered with light-sensitive cells shaped like rods and cones. These are the receptors that filter the light you see into nerve impulses that then travel to your brain through the optic nerve. 

No one person's arrangment of cones is the same, which will cause...

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Why #TheDress matters

It’s not a royal wedding gown or a haute couture creation that’s turned the world into armchair fashion critics, it’s an ambiguously colored frock from British retailer Roman Originals.

The bodycon dress, which sells online for 50 pounds (about $77.13), is nothing to get excited about from a fashion standpoint. It’s the kind of affordable, special-occasion style that is standard fare at weddings and parties.

But the debate it has sparked (even among celebrities, including Kim Kardashian, Kanye West  and Taylor Swift), highlights how social media have become a fashion forum for all, because clothing (like cute animals, apparently) is a thread that unites us as humans.

Quite simply, we all have to get dressed in the morning, and every time we observe what someone is wearing, we form opinions. Clothing is a sign system that transmits messages about age, sex and social class, which all starts with the most basic decision about a garment’s color. And even that is open to interpretation,...

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Lupita Nyong'o's Oscars gown goes missing

Remember Lupita Nyong'o's gorgeous Oscars dress, the one encrusted with 6,000 pearls? The dress (estimated to be worth $150,000) has been reported missing from the London West Hollywood Hotel, and the Los Angeles Sheriff's Department is investigating the disappearance as a theft. [Los Angeles Times]

Madonna says she is done with capes after the wardrobe malfunction that caused her fall at the Brit Awards. The cape was supposed to come off when a backup dancer tugged it, but it had been tied too tightly and she tumbled over, causing whiplash, she says. [BBC News]

People -- lots of 'em -- are spending time arguing on Twitter and other social media over the color of a dress in a photograph. Really. [Los Angeles Times]

Retired publishing mogul John B. Fairchild has died at age 87. The family business, Fairchild Publications Inc., published magazines and trade papers including Women's Wear Daily. [WWD]

The Apple Watch, coming in April, is being touted the old-fashioned way: with a 12-page...

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The Internet is arguing over the color of a dress -- seriously
Madonna tumbles onstage as her wardrobe malfunctions

The combination of a flowing red cape and Christian Louboutin booties took a toll on Madonna as she performed at the Brit Awards on Wednesday. The cape reportedly was tugged by a backup dancer -- apparently in an attempt to remove it. But the cape didn't come loose, the heels wobbled and Madonna fell violently backward down a small set of steps. Though clearly shaken, she quickly got up and began singing again, later telling fans on Instagram that she was OK. [Billboard]

Mirjana Puhar, 19, a recent contestant on "America's Next Top Model," was one of three people found dead in a home in Charlotte, N.C. Her boyfriend Emmanuel Rangel, 19, was taken into custody. [TMZ]

A large selection of Disneyland character and performer costumes and other memorabilia is set for auction this weekend, our Adam Tschorn reports. [Los Angeles Times]

Dior creative director Raf Simons wants to design things that women want, he says in an interview with Elle. "Do you want to be an entertainer," Simons says,...

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