Friday, February 26, 2010

Just being, you know, awesome

what great red, and what a great slouch.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

a new trend for me

Colors I'm craving for spring that have creeped into my studio practice. Colors, those freakin' creepers.

read about the pieces here.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Jean Cocteau was a hipster and for once hipsters didn't ruin everything

As everyone knows Hipsters Ruin Everything. And I mean EVERYTHING. That is except for when they actually do something GROUNDBREAKING and PUSH THE BOUNDARIES OF ART and such, in which case they get to be avant-garde or visionary or bohemian geniuses. In other words, acceptable. (yeeeessssssssssssss)

Well, everyone knows Jean Cocteau was hipster (perhaps a given because he was French?) but he was like the hipster leader, and he did everything there ever was to be done, so that makes him legit despite his hipster status. Too legit to quit. ugh, me. Anyway the real point to all of this (rambling) is that I just watched Jean Cocteau's La Belle et la Bete (Beauty and the Beast) and it was so beautiful I had to share. When it came out in 1946 it must have been really high budget because the special effects, sets and costumes are incredibly lavish and amazing for the time. I was reading in a article that these candelabras in the Beast's castle BLEW everyone's minds when it was in theaters which I thought was really charming and quaint because everyone can see that they're just people's arms sticking out of holes in a black wall. I'm soo pretentious and 21st century. jeez.

see? totally obvs.

crazy neckline embellishment

lovin' the head piece that attaches to the dress!

BY FAR my favorite costume!
an amazing voluminous night gown
made of a veritable waterfall of tulle.

mad special effects where she comes through a wall really slowly!

I was so taken with how fantastical, crazy, beautiful and labor intensive the costumes were the whole time I was watching the movie. I always think it's so great when costume designers can synthesize so many different time periods into one coherent vision like this which takes from fashion from Medieval times through the Baroque and a few things even from Victorian and Edwardian tailoring. It was a really impressive and beautiful vision.

some pun about patterns or something, like in TeenVogue

I don't think I've mentioned this on this blog, because I haven't really touched on my life in any way, but one of the main reasons I finally had the time to start a fashion blog is that I'm studying abroad in Florence for the spring semester and the curriculum here is much less demanding and rigorous than at my university at home. WAY less.

Anyway, that explanation was only necessary because these are some patterns from some early Christian mosaics in Ravenna which I visited earlier in the semester and I find them soo inspiring. All of these details are from the mausoleum of Galla Placidia which is a really small one roomed building where she was buried and the inside is completely covered in this:

swooning ensues. I really really want garments that incorporate these patterns now. I keep fantasizing about embroidering some of these onto things even though I know I would only have three options:

1. don't actually start.

2. don't actually finish.

3. kill myself in the process of embroidering really complex and multi-color patterns.

SO that sounds really promising, and I'm really excited and I'll let you know how that turns out.

P.S. If you want to know more about Ravenna in general you can read my post about our day at my professional blog (which is really just a travel blog for this semester) although it's not super information heavy. Really if you want to get into to it crack an art history book, it's the best way.

p.s. London fashion week is going pretty great! I'll post my favorites soon.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Breathing into a paper bag or Fashion Week part II

salutations slightly growing readership(!) this is my final New York Spring 2010 fashion week wrap up and let me tell you, it's been quite a treat, my friends, quite a treat. Let's start this shebang off with the obvious, because the obvious is always fun:


This collection is so fresh and lovely and unpretentious. I love how it's neither trying to be an innocent little girl nor a super sophisticated woman, it's so much more refreshing to be something in between! My favorite looks incorporate these long diaphanous organza frocks (finally a little variety in skirt lengths!) coupled with the crisply tailored chevron coats and jackets. The coats at Marc Jacobs were really sweet in their a-line flare and patterns, but so sharp and sophisticated as well.

I love the drama of this stole and full length leather gloves with an eyelet frock.

This sweater adds a collegiate/ 1930's/ 90's grunge/ mountain lodge feel to this otherwise simple and girlish look and I love the pattern play. This look feels like this:

film still from I Capture the Castle

But the collection overall, for me, was like a modern take on a wonderful combination of Marianne Faithfull and Joni Mitchell. So, more like this:

Marianne Faithfull

Joni Mitchell

Joni Mitchell

In other words, airy, breathy, down to earth, playful, whimsical, darling, and so timeless.


THIS PRINT. THIS PRINT. I am at a loss for words. (except awooooooga, onomatopoeia and not a word)

again, really happy with the new take on military fashion. I'm TOTALLY in love with the red piping, how the strap of the bag imitates ceremonial sashes (so very subtle), and once again, that great length.

What is there to say (really?) about this jumpsuit? other than I might want to live in it? (or my own DIY copy rather) STRIPE KNEES.

Love the military jacket/bomber jacket combo and the juxtaposition of the two blues in the patched pants. pretty great.


Let me preface these photographs by saying that this may be my favorite Rodarte collection. of all time. OF ALL TIME.

To avoid paraphrasing because I'm lazy or because it's Sunday and I stayed up late last night here's an excerpt a review of this collection by's Nicole Phelps:

Before their show, the sisters explained that a long drive from El Paso to Marfa, Texas, got them thinking they might like to explore their Mexican roots. From there, they became interested in the troubled border town of Ciudad Juárez; the hazy, dreamlike quality of the landscape there; and the maquiladora workers going to the factory in the middle of the night. And that, according to the designers, who certainly know how to romance a pitch, led to this conclusion: They'd build a collection off the idea of sleepwalking.

I did read this before I formed my own impression of the show, so I was aware of what Rodarte's intentions were but I couldn't help seeing someting else in this collection as well. I think the idea of sleepwalking definitely comes through in the last looks of the collection which are all full length gowns in white, but definitely don't come off as wedding gowns, although they certainly could be. Instead of reading "wedding" I feel like they convey a ghostly other-worldly-ness (say that ten times fast, I dare you) and a floating or levitation that I could associate with sleepwalking. I thought their concept also came out in the details, especially the shoes by Nicholas Kirkwood, which had heels designed by to look like melting wax, and candles (and therefore wax) really just smack of ceremony, seance, or just a mystical atmosphere.

It's so wonderful to know the inspiration behind a more conceptual collection like this one, but what's also great is that I never would've gotten sleepwalking (or Mexico necessarily) just by looking at it. When I first looked through the collection the first thing I saw was the transition from fall to winter in the transition from piled on reds, oranges, patterned masses of florals and lots of textured layers to the lighter, softer piles of pure white. I think the idea of creating a seasonal collection of garments (which is what all these collections are) simply around the changing of seasons and the passing of time is just as beautiful as the actual concept and the idea of creating garments around the idea of the accumulation of leaves or of dressing like snow sounds lovely. It's kind of like seasonal cooking, which I also like. Just to end in an offbeat unrelated kind of way. ha ha.

The knits got more structured and I feel like the fringe probably moves spectacularly.

This might be my favorite piece of the collection, although I can't really say why.


OK SO. I had a pretty genius moment with this collection which I'm now going to unashamedly brag about. BUT SRSLY GUYS. I'm psychic. Looking at this collection I was most drawn in by the colors which I think are devastatingly richly beautiful, but anyway, they seemed familiar to me as paint pigments. I kept thinking of them in terms of alizarin crimson, quinacridone reds and oranges, phthalo greens, and smalt or Guercino blues. So I thought, logically, these colors remind me of Renaissance or early Baroque portraiture or something...LO AND BEHOLD DEAR READERS:

"I looked at a Renaissance portrait and bumped up the colors," she said backstage, casually explaining her Fall inspiration.
-again from by Romney Leader

Here's some examples of the things than ran through my psychic mind:

Portrait of Lodovico Capponi, Bronzino, The Frick Collection, NY

Portrait of Bira Medici, Bronzino, Uffizi Gallery, Florence

Man in a red turban, possibly a self portrait,
Jan Van Eyck, National Gallery, London


This collection, and really Oscar de la Renta as a human being are in no need of elaboration or explanation. COLOR! FUN! A 70's KITCHEN! FRUIT! aaaahhhhhhhhhhhhh!


The Coolest Kids Ever. Too cool for school. Too legit to quit. This collection is like eryone you ever wanted to be in Middle School, or when you dreamed about being a rock star, or a crazy outcast, or a super duper cool version of Marilyn Manson (without the crazy) or just a more gothy, hardedged, on the margins version of yourself.

Love the proportions of jacket to pants here, as well as her hair. And below? DARLING! and only the slightest touch girly even though it's such a classically and traditionally feminine silhouette.

PLUS, you could potentially be as cool as Wednesday Adams here, if you wore this collection:

looking like Wednesday Adams? Always a win.

To sum up again, just some stray pieces I really loved:

um. This Marchesa dress is made of sea foam? what else can I say?

I thought this look from Alexandre Herchcovitch's collection really caught the ornateness, texture and gem-like quality of the Eastern European costumes and textiles he was inspired by. I wish the rest of the collection had incorporated more embroidery or allusions to Russian folktale illustrations which are SO GREAT. This look however left me happy and wanting to wear a headscarf.

I'm not usually a huge fan of Tory Burch even though everyone else in my hometown is BUT THIS SWEATER. OH GOD THIS SWEATER. It's like a more fashionable Freeks and Geeks OR Harry Potter sweaters. OR MY LIFE'S AMBITIONS.

I for some reason can never find really great stills of the Harry Potter movies even though I'm constantly looking for them and I definitely couldn't find some of the greater fair-isle knitted sweaters that Ron wears in the third and fourth movies, but these are all right too. I like how they always put Ron next to Hermione to foreshadow that they're going to be together, even though that sucks. She is way too good for him.

see? they did it again.

I'll leave you with this image which further proves that Harry and Hermione should be together and J.K. Rowling only put her with Ron because if Harry got Hermione he really WOULD have gotten EVERYTHING. How did this get so far away from sweaters?