Sunday, July 19, 2009

It Doesn't Stick

Every season is seems like there is a new IT designer.  It kinda seems like this season's is Alexander Wang.  Honestly, I don't get it.

His Resort 2010 collection makes no sense.  Most of it doesn't even look good on the model, like these weird overalls.  Lets face it, these overalls have a bad case of the FUG.  Please don't wear them.  But, what makes the collection even weirder is that right in the middle of it there are suddenly a whole bunch of not bad cocktail and evening looks that really have absolutely nothing to do with the rest of the collection.  Even though in the pictures the same girl is wearing everything, it seems that the evening wear is for someone else entirely.  It was just odd.  And uncohesive.  It just doesn't all stick together to form a cohesive, well thought out collection.  It really is too bad!

Picture from

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Time to Vote!

Okay everyone, TIME TO VOTE!  Please go to HERE and vote 5 stars on all of the garments!

I know, why should you bother?  Well, the voting is for a competition where the winning designer will be featured at the Las Vegas Fashion Week from September 3-5th.  The designer you are voting for is Devani Weaver from Phoenix, Arizona.  She's exceptionally talented and was the Scottsdale Fashion Week 2008 Designer of the Year.  Most of her work is one-of-a-kind and beautifully detailed.  Not only that, but she's incredibly nice and very humble.  She's on those up and coming designers that has real talent and with our help and votes can really make a name for herself.  In light of that, don't forget to vote!

Picture from

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Its Official!

Its official!  I will be speaking at Phoenix Fashion Week!  

Phoenix Fashion Week is October 1-3 2009 and will be at the Valley Ho resort in Phoenix.  Their website is rather uninformative right now so when the events get nearer I'll post a link where tickets can be had.

Okay, so I know my blog is about fashion in general, that is not what I will be speaking about.  I have been booked to speak about the Business of Fashion, particularly about some of the financial things that no one likes to think about like 401(k) stuff, disability insurance, etc... that no designer or boutique owner can be without but none of them like to think about.  

Picture is of Emily Brandle's show at Phoenix Fashion Week in 2008.  Picture is from

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Master of Fabric--the History of Fortuny

There are some things in fashion that are simply mythical.  One of the most notable of these is Fortuny Fabrics.  Every time I see them I immediately think of Lousie Brooks and Greta Garbo and their glamorous dresses!  The production of the fabrics began just after 1900 and their current factory opened in the early 1920s.  Ever since, their secret formula has been used to create some of the most fine fabrics in the world.

Mariano Fortuny was a Spanish designer who studied achlemy, art, science, music, architecture and history all over the world with a particular emphasis on Greek and Egyptian history.  Oddly, he also had an obsession with Wagner's music.  When he started his foray into fashion in 1907 he decided to open his own fabric production so that he could have access to the high-quality fabrics he envisioned his designs to be made of.  It even seems that neither World War managed to completely shut down his factory, either.

The processes that were and still are used to create these fabrics is still a trade secret and the Fortuny company still claims that no one has been able to exactly replicate their fabrics.  The factory is still using the same machinery and processes that were implemented by Mr. Fortuny himself.  Some of the processes that are known to be used are dying the fabric from the back and the use of dye chemicals from achlemy.  Regardless of what secret thing they do to make their fabric as wonderful as it is, what really makes Fortuny fabric really so wonderful is that it truly stands the test of time.  I'm inclined to say that no other designer seems to have as many surviving gowns from the first few decades of the 20th century as Fortuny and I think that is the true testament to the quality of his work.

Picture of Fortuny gown from

Monday, July 13, 2009

Foot Fetish

One of the odd things about Prada is that for some reason over the past maybe 3-5 years their Resort collections are always their best of the year.  I have no idea why that is.  Maybe because Resort is really about dressing women for when they are out having fun and being themselves and that is what inspires Miuccia the most.  Frankly, I don't know.

Prada's Resort 2010 collection gives me lots to say.  It all boils down to the cold hard fact of I WANT IT.  They did themselves proud.  

The shoes for the collection are spectacular.  The ones with leather flowers are cute, feminine and wearable.  They are fun and would look equally well with a black dress as with a print skirt and comfortable top.  While they are close to the shoe collection that they put out under their MiuMiu label a few seasons ago, there has been enough tweeking with the shoes to where one could own both those previously made ones and these without feeling like it was simply deja-vous.  And, the nice thing is that they are aren't terribly trendy so they could easily be worn several years from now without it being an issue.  Now, that is something to be excited about!

Picture from

Friday, July 10, 2009

Something to Paddle In--Tyr Swimsuits!

Yes, I know, many designers make all sorts of swimwear.  Some are quite cute, even.  But, when it comes to swimwear all I can say is DON'T SKIMP ON THE GOOD STUFF.

Nothing is worse than swimming in the ocean and a big wave hits you and well, you just gave all of the awkward teenage boys in the vicinity a free show.  Ugh.  From experience no designer seems to protect from such horrifying experiences.  

That would be why you buy Tyr swimwear.  The stuff doesn't budge.  It sucks you in so you suddenly have a magnificent shape.  It comes in reasonably fashionable patterns--the one pictured is cool looking and also creates a nice optical illusion that you are much thinner than you actually are.  And, it lasts all summer unless you swim as much as a high school water polo player.  I know, it isn't the most "cool" thing ever to buy, but you will seriously thank yourself when you go to the beach.  Seriously.

Picture from

Thursday, July 9, 2009

That Special Time Of Year

It is that most wonderful time of year--SALE TIME!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

The summer sale season is in full swing now and due to the economic crisis a number of designers have really slashed their prices.  Right now on they have lowered prices by more than 50%.  The discounts are to the point where some dresses are only about $300.  Yes, that is right, $300 for a real Marni dress straight from the company.  The items that are still available there are actually some pretty good ones and not just the fugly ones that no one else wants.  Time to make the most of this most special time of year and stock up!

Picture from  

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

DIY Done Right--Libertine Rocks!

Okay, so for some reason it became popular to repurpose old clothes and make your own things in a sort of campy, tacky way.  I don't know if it is the whole green movement or what that makes people do this or if it something Kool-Aid started putting in their little packets of drink mix.  In general it isn't good.

But, the whole DIY I'm a hipster rockstar can be done and done well.  Probably the most well-known and celebrated for it is Libertine.  Libertine is made up of Johnson Hartig and Cindy Greene--one of them refurbishes used garments and the other screen prints and otherwise embellishes on them.  What makes them so good is that they actually do a good job of juxtaposing high-brow looks with Victorian and punk images to create something that is unusual but totally wearable.  And, most importantly, it looks like someone professional made it and you didn't just splatter paint it in your back yard.  

Libertine is oddly hard to find.  Barney's and Bergdorf-Goodman carry it and I'm sure that a variety of smaller boutiques do as well.  Just be sure that when you buy it that the tag doesn't also say "For Target" if you are looking for one of their hand-done pieces.

Picture from, of their Fall 2009 collection

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Vacation Time!

A good part of the time Resort collections feel like they are simply composed of the stuff that was made for other collections that wasn't good enough to be shown but not so terrible as to be completely discarded.  Which is probably Resort is probably the most forgotten and least cared about of all of the "seasons".  

Marni's Resort 2010 collection feels like anything but things that should have stayed on the cutting room floor.  It is classic Marni--interesting pieces that you'll never have a fat day in.  Sure, there were no soul-stirring prints, but the cuts and colors were such that they really aren't "resort" pieces, but a whole collection of classic basics that could be worn year after year.  That is nothing less than a successful collection.

Picture from

Friday, July 3, 2009

Kinda a Snooze...

Okay, so I know the CFDA awards are like the Oscars of fashion.  I get it.  They mean a lot and only really go to the best and the brightest.  Yep.  But, I can't help but be disappointed with this year's women's wear winners, Rodarte.

Yes, they make good stuff.  They are a designer label.  Okay.  But, they just really aren't that exciting.  Their stuff of overwrought and kinda unwearable.  Sometimes I think they've spent too much time living in their parents' basement.  It isn't that they are bad, far from it.  I think maybe what it is is that they need a few more years to really find their groove and make garments that make women jump up and down and scream.  Because, right now their garments make me keep on scrolling right on by.  

I do genuinely hope that they do really live up to the award and make fantastic things.  I guess I was just hoping that the award would go to someone who designs things that keep me up at night.  But, when I think about it, I can't really say that any American designer is doing that now...

Picture from

Thursday, July 2, 2009

New Talent!

I know, I haven't been the best at updating this lately...

But, it is the season where new fashion talents are starting to emerge and put together collections to show the community!  One such person is Briana Linea who is going to be showing October 1st at Phoenix Fashion Week.  Her collection is going to be focusing on The Little Black Dress!  Briana is currently finishing up in fashion school and working on launching her fashion company called Briana Linea Fashions.  Her company is going to specialize in women's wear, both custom and ready to wear.  Can't wait to see what she comes up with!

Her blog is:

Friday, May 1, 2009

May Flowers

It is now unarguably spring!  And, one of the best parts of spring are all of the beautiful flowers blooming.  As the saying goes, April showers bring May flowers!

Floral prints are always in style.  It is classic, beautiful and easily adaptable to any trend that happens to be going on at any time.  The florals that seem to be hot this season are usually abstract/hand-drawn and on a light background.  The big breakout hit in this sort of print was the Prada 2008 Resort collection and the trend is still going strong this spring.

One of the coolest interpretations of this is by Marni!  One of the things that Marni does best is floral prints.  This spring will probably be remembered as one of their best in the last few years.  The prints look like hand-drawn doodles of sorts yet are totally wearable and chic!  And, they look classic enough to where if you invest in a piece, you'll be able to wear it seasons from now.  Pretty!!

Picture from

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

First Fashion

Politics can be extremely controversial but one thing isn't--Michelle Obama is one of America's top style icons.  You don't need to agree with her to admire the way that she dresses.  

Michelle is in the public eye daily and does an excellent job of dressing herself in a manner that shows off her figure while being modest and appropriate.  And stylish.  She's a mother and a wife and a professional and she does it with style.  What really makes her style so great is that she shops at normal stores and incorporates trends into her outfits without looking crazy or inappropriate.  

One of the great things that Michelle is doing for fashion is supporting lesser-known American designers instead of the standard St. John or Oscar de la Renta of First Ladies past.  She is helping new voices and ideas be heard, exactly what fashion is all about.  Her first 100 days as First Lady are done and without a single major fashion faux pas or dowdy episode.  Her popularity is rising and she has many days ahead to show off even more exciting fashion moments!

Picture of Michelle Obama with designer Maria Pinto.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

April Showers--Peter Som Makes It Rain

One of the best parts of the spring is that the weather brings out the best in nature.  The rain brings out the sprouting plants and flowers, exactly what spring is all about!

And, spring fashion is no different.  It is all about bringing out the color after a long winter of drab, dark wools.  Peter Som's spring line is all about the progression through spring--first it starts with drab beiges, then the blues become brighter and then the rainbow of colors come out!  

The dress pictured is from the middle of his spring runway show, blue like the spring rain.  And, at the bottom of the dress the colors are starting to peek out and around the collar the flowers are starting to bloom, just like spring outside!

Picture from

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Chic Knit

There are some things that are always classic.  Missoni is one of them.  Since the 60's they have constantly churned out garment after garment that is nothing but stylish, wearable but easily identifiable as their own style.

Okay, so the styling of the model is awful.  She looks like she forgot her pants.  But, her top/"dress" is DELIGHTFUL.  So pretty, reminds me of a van Gogh painting, shredded and reimagined.  The cut is cute, the print is youthful and wearable and it is just what everyone needs right now.  Probably the perfect thing to wear for the spring!  Hopefully with pants, of course.

Picture from, Resort 09

Friday, April 17, 2009

The New Source

The day has finally come! is finally live!!

The is the clearance/outlet site for!  Yes, they finally spun off a site for people who aren't going to buy a full-priced $3k gown.  Instead, they have all of the stuff that didn't sell on their main site marked down and accessible year-round.  And, they will also be doing a variety of new sales gimicks, like a sort of dutch auction on certain items and give-aways.  Also, they will be selling things that did not appear on their main website, but it is unclear what these will be.  This can only be good for the consumer--cheaper prices, new items and second chances from a reputable establishment!

Picture from

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Secondhand Happiness!

Sometimes you just need something to cheer you up!  Well, nothing works better than a gorgeous Chanel tweed bag at a great price.

The bag pictured is DELISH!!  The pink, black, white and mint green are beyond classic yet don't scream preppy.  And, it is secondhand, so the price is to die for!  It is being sold by the premier secondhand bag dealer "fashionphile".  The company ONLY sells real items so there is absolutely nothing to worry about.  Not only are their items the best, but their customer service is top notch.

There's a way to cheer up a day--get a bag at a great price from a great seller!

Picture from

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Time To Bail Out?

While banks and other companies around the world are being bailed out by various governments, is the fashion industry getting one too?

The answer is .....YES!!  Italian fashion houses are hurting and since they are such a large part of the Italian economy and industry, the government has decided to grant them assistance.  Not every country is doing this, as in most places the fashion industry is merely considered a frivolity and unimportant.  Could you imagine explaining to the average midwestern taxpayer that Carolina Herrera needs a bailout?  But, in Italy fashion is such a part of history and employs so many people that if it were to go under it would be a national crisis.  

And, hopefully this means that the Italian government does not get a say in what walks down the runway--just imagine if government ministers were allowed to design Ferre' dresses!

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Scary Times!

Oh boy.  Sometimes life is scary and you need a new hair cut.  This is one 'do that is unfashionable and I do not recommend.  Unless, you want to have strangers draw on your picture and mock you globally.

Picture of Kelly Pickler from

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

The New Shoulders & Balmain Resurrected

Lately, fashion is starting to re-imagine the 1980's.  So far it hasn't been a wonderful thing.  The 1980's were not kind to fashion.  It was a fugly explosion of neon, rhinestones and shoulder pads.  Ick.  And, not the least flattering.

Balmain has just released a blouse with re-imagined 1980's shoulder pads.  For some reason, in the 1980's shoulder pads were somehow conflated with "power".  Heaven help as to why that could ever be.  But, in the reimagining of these power shoulders, Balmain has turned the power from corporate power to super hero power!

The shoulders on this blouse look like they would be more appropriate on a female superhero!  It is surprisingly fun!  Sure, this blouse is not practical in the least.  It is very high fashion.  But, somewhere there are women who have somewhere to wear this.  And, it is fun to see designers take old trends and revise them into something that kinda pokes fun at itself and is pop culturally relevant.  After all, with all of the super hero movies around why not dress like one?!

Picture from

Monday, March 9, 2009

A New Way to Stand

There are only so many ways to create and decorate a moderately wearable shoe.  But, some of the best designers are finding cool new ways to decorate them!

The FW09 Dries van Noten show was pretty blah.  It looked like poorly reworked several seasons old Marni.  Not awful, but nothing that will make me lay awake at night dreaming of it.  Far and away, the best part of the show was the shoes.

What really made the shoes cool was the creative decoration of the bottom arches of the shoes.  In the one pictured, it is done in matching python!  Generally, that is the most neglected part of the shoe, normally just plain leather except in a very few other designer's work.  It is cool to see Dries thinking of new ways to rethink fashion items!  Now, if only the rest of the collection was as exciting...

Picture from

Sunday, March 8, 2009

All Wrapped Up

There was some talk a season or two ago that the Wrap Dress is out.  DvF, the fairy godmother of the Wrap even basically stopped making them.  Some blogs were calling them "frumpy" and that they made women look like sad middle-aged housewives.

Happy to see that the WRAP IS BACK!!  DvF even put out a whole slew of them this season!  They come in almost every style and print imaginable!  What makes the wrap so flattering on most women is that it gives a very defined waist, creating a top, middle and bottom of the figure.  

The dresses pictured is a personal favorite.  They style name is "Jenny" in "vintage patch" print.  The print seems to be a collage of previous DvF prints!  The dress is cut beautifully and the print is unquestionably DvF.  So perfect for spring!

Picture from

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Blazing Ahead

The blazer is one of those garments that has the ability to hide all flaws and do wonders or to make the wearer look like a sad, frumpy box.  It all depends on the designer's skill at designing something that will compliment the human shape.

Haider Ackermann is one of the top indie European designers!  And, with good reason.  As the blazer pictured shows, he can transform grey fabric into a blazer that is interesting, wearable, flattering and edgy.  The front stance is so unusual yet flattering!  It is nice to see that great design is still being made!  This would look perfect with a suit or with jeans--so versatile.  Huzzah for Haider!

Picture from

Friday, March 6, 2009

Falling for Draped

There are some designers that just do some things beautifully.  One of those is Zero + Maria Cornejo.  As I've previously blogged about, Maria Cornejo is a master at draping.  She manages to turn fabric into a beautiful masterpiece.

Her FW09 collection did not disappoint--she still has her touch!  There were plenty of draped dresses, blouses and skirts to keep every draping-junkie happy.  Not only that, but she also ventured into using some print!  It is so great to see such a master designer take risks and carry their talents to a new level!

The dress pictured is this season's version of a dress that she does every season--a draped sack dress.  But, the dress is not just any sack, it is something more.  What that something more is stylish and flattering--even though it is a sack it doesn't look unfortunate, instead it looks fashion forward.  And, it looks wearable by a woman of any age.  It is just spectacular!

Picture from

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Rose Wonder

Tomas Maier is a spectacular designer!  He is one of the few designers that can pull off a wonderful collection without prints and only with a handful of colors.  

Not only does Tomas design under his down name, but he is also the lead designer for Bottega Veneta.  This most recent collection for FW09 is so...relaxing!  The color scheme is black, beige and a lovely dusty rose.  The rose color is the perfect shade--it flatters most skin tones and doesn't look like it is from some bad shabby chic display.  

The FW09 collection not only centered around some classic colors, but also some wonderful shapes!  The whole thing looked like what Grace Kelly in her prime would wear if she were alive today.  Oh, just delicious and flattering!  Here's to hoping that more designers follow suit!

Picture from

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Something To Clutch On To

The Milan fall shows are going on right now--horray!!  Of course, because they are fall/winter they can be pretty drab.  Mostly colors of black, grey and brown and heavy.  Nothing wrong with that, but I'm a spring person!

The Fendi fall show had the standard fall colors--grey and black.  But, it also had the most magnificent splashes of color!  Lime, teal and pink!  Hopefully that means this fall is going to be littered with happy colors--we have enough drab things going on in the world without having to only wear black.

The splashes of color in the Fendi show were in the accessories, and primarily in the bags.  The bags were like little square birds of a paradise in their colors!  The pink one pictured is heavenly!  It is whimsical and the perfect size for a clutch.  And, the color is one of those classic colors that is predictably always wearable.  Hopefully it goes into production!

Picture from

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Cute City!!

Most models lately simply aren't glamourous or pretty.  They look like aliens.  I don't know why fashion is after that right now, but it is.  Fortunately, not all models look like anorexic space visitors.

Agyness Deyn is one of the most amazing models walking right now, and surprise!  She's ADORABLE!!  Agyness is from the UK and in her early 20s.  She is also in a band and occasionally sings.  And, most of all, she is a spectacular model!

She has done Burberry and a number of other campaigns and has walked the runway for some of the world's biggest designers.  In the picture to the left, she is in the FW09 Anna Sui show.  She has also been profiled in US VOGUE a number of times as one of the world's top models.  Here's to hoping that her career continues for many more years in the future!

Picture from

Monday, February 23, 2009

Ugh Fug

Ugh, sometimes celebrities make awful decisions.  Somehow, even though they have legions of underlings that handle such things, they just can't seem to get it right.  Considering that the Oscars is like the grandest fashion event of the Hollywood calender, you'd think that they would pay extra special attention to making sure that they look the absolute best possible

Poor Reese.  Normally, she looks like a goddess.  And, normally Rodarte makes the most divine gowns imaginable.  But, somehow this ensemble looks like it has gone terribly wrong.  Like it is the bad version of Kate Winslet's beautiful gown.  

What makes it so wrong is its bizarre busyness.  It has ombre chiffon panels all over the place, like huge godets stuck in randomly all over the gown.  Then, it has strange straps that don't seem to match the rest of the gown.  To add insult to injury, it then has random patches of embellishment all over the bust.  Lordy McHeavens.  It is a lot of look and not even in an interesting way.  

Lets hope that next year Reese comes up with a gown to match her beautiful self!

Picture from

Saturday, February 21, 2009

A Sad Show

Lets be honest, New York Fashion Week this season was a disappointment.  Sure, Fall/Winter wear is always a drag, but this year it was even more so.

The really depressing part wasn't even the clothes.  It was the shows themselves.  While many designers DID put on shows, a good many simply threw parties and had their models walk around to showcase the clothes.  *SAD*  Sure, the economy is in the tank, but that means that the world needs a fantasy, a show, something to make them forget what is going on.  Instead, the designers decided to hide in their studios and only invite their friends.  

For instance, Vera Wang Lavender Label didn't bother with a show this year.  The clothes were great, wearable and flattering.  But, instead of the world getting to see them stomp down the runway, victorious over economic dread, they hid away at an exclusive party.  The dress pictured is very nice--flattering, flirty and young.  But, I'll always wonder what it would have looked like on the runway, crowd staring, model stomping, music pulsing.  There is something magical about that runway moment, and a tragedy that this year was without it.

Picture from

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Art Deco Lovelies!

There are some designers that are predictable.  Not that it is a bad thing.  Many designers bank on the predictability of their style, provided that the style is classic.  One of these designers is Temperley London.

Temperley London is known for their art-deco inspired knit designs.  Sure, they make all sorts of other pieces in all sorts of fabric and prints.  Those pieces are great.  But, they aren't what Temperley is known for.  Every season, it isn't a Temperley collection without a few pieces of knit with some sort of art-deco twist.  Love it!

This season's art-deco inspired knit piece is pictured.  It is kinda different than previous ones, but that is what makes it special.  It is classic, feminine and wearable.  And so Temperley!

Picture from, FW09

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Hand-Sculpted by Magic!

There are some designers that are just...different.  And, in a good way.  One of those is Koi Suwannagate.  She is arguably the top designer in Thailand.  She specializes in origami-folded knit-wear that frequently is of vintage and reworked fabric.  What really makes her work special is that she also makes one-of-a-kind pieces that you don't have to be a celebrity to own!

Koi not only makes one-of-a-kind pieces, but she also puts out ready to wear collections and frequently collaborates with other, particularly Asian designers.  

How one can tell her one-of-a-kind pieces from her ready to wear is that the one-of-a-kind pieces have the tag "Hand Sculpted by Koi".  Also, she plans on launching a menswear line soon!

What really makes her special is that her pieces are unusual, fun and wearable!  The grey sweater pictured is so fun and unusual....but something that someone could actually wear!

Picture from

Saturday, February 14, 2009

The Day of Love

Alas, the international day of love has arrived.  Many relationships over the years fizzle and die.  But, there are some that continue to live and bloom, with many happy years ahead.  

For me, that is my relationship with Marni.  Sure, men come and go but the constant is the shrine to my love of Marni living in my closet.  The fun prints, the bright colors, the fun cuts!  Oh, there are some loves that are worth having!

This spring, Marni definitely worth loving.  The sleeveless vest is the pink coat from fw2008 reinterpreted, the belt is a new version of a perennial Marni classic.  The necklace is the new version of the Marni statement-necklace.  The t-shirt is fun Marni t-shirt that anyone could wear.  And, of course, the skirt is a revisioning of a Marni print from a few seasons ago.  Needless to say, the shoes, bag and glasses are fun, wearable and instantly feminine.  Ah, love in textile form!

Picture from

Friday, February 13, 2009

Feeling Lucky?

There are some days like today where you just need a bit of extra luck!  One popular way to ward off bad luck and other associated maladies is to wear lucky charms as jewelry.  Finding fashion-forward jewelry that doesn't break the bank isn't exactly the easiest thing to do.

Dogeared is a jewelry company that makes cute, fun jewelry that any person could wear!  The necklace pictured is about $65 and gold--so not only is it lucky, but it won't break the bank.  It is beautiful, understated and would go with almost anything.  And, perfect to wear on Friday the 13th!

Picture from

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Black Is Still Classic

Every season someone always say "red/pink/hippos/whatever is the new black!"  Well, is it?

Not so much!  Black is one of those colors that really is classic and is the ultimate neutral.  It really does look good on most people and really does go with basically anything.  

One of the things that every woman must have is a pair of beautiful black heels.  The pair pictured by Jil Sander is the ultimate luxe version.  They are black python peeptoes!  Sexy yet demure and appropriate for almost any occasion.  The shape of the heels are as classic as it gets and python is always in style.  They are one of those pairs of shoes that any woman will wear until the local cobbler can repair them no more!

Picture from, currently on sale.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Africa, Revisited

There are some perennial themes in fashion that are virtually always incorporated in a season in one fashion or an other.  One of these themes is Africa and African art/fashion.  Some years it is animal prints, sometimes it is tropical prints, and sometimes it is reinterpretations of traditional dress.

This season, Spring/Summer 2009, not only are some animal prints being used, but some designers are using wax fabric/wax fabric inspired prints.  Dutch Wax Fabric is a specific type of fabric in West Africa, such as the Cote de Ivoire and Nigeria.  It features bright colors, bold prints with
almost any theme but primarily geometric or nature-inspired.  There are several different styles of prints and garments made from the fabric are worn by both men and women, but primarily women.  Much of the fabric is by Vlisco and is considered a fashion essential.

A current example of the use of these prints is in the SS09 Junya Watanabe show.  He showed beautifully complex dresses in bold wax-fabric style prints!  They look so summery and fresh, and not necessarily because of the cut, but because of the print.  Bold prints are always in style and the kind of attention given to that in Africa is something to aspire to and admire.  My favorite print that Junya Watanabe used was the evil eye print--blue, yellow and red in a new interpretation of a traditional good luck symbol.  It will be exciting to see where else these prints show up in fashion this season!

Picture from

Monday, February 9, 2009

Contrasting Beautifully

There are some color combinations that just work.  One of those combinations is green and beige.  Yes, beige is the most boring of colors, but it works wonderfully as a background to contrast more interesting colors and prints.  

A blouse that captures this beautifully is the "Sophia" blouse by Karen Zambos.  It has just the right shades of green and beige in the perfect proportions.  On the front, the bulk of the shirt is green and on the back, the bottom strip is green and the bulk of the shirt is beige.  This combination is interesting, unusual and beautiful!

This shirt would be great to wear with jeans, as pictured.  But, it is basic enough to look great with a printed skirt or with a suit.  It is pretty and interesting while being completely wearable and fun!

Picture from, currently on sale

Sunday, February 8, 2009

The Flowers That Don't Fade

There are some things that are so classic and timeless that they are outside of trends.  Lanvin pearl necklaces have become one of these things.  

Lanvin pearl necklaces aren't real pearls.  They are in fact purely costume jewelry.  But, that doesn't make them any less beautiful or classic.  What makes them so timeless is that they have that fabulous je ne sais quoi, that perfect touch that only Lanvin creates.

The necklace pictured is from this current season and will be wearable for years and years to come.  The juxtaposition of the pearls against the delicate chain and sequin shiny flowers is unexpected but perfect.  The colors are soft enough to go with almost anything in any season.  It is just...perfect!

Picture from

Friday, February 6, 2009

Puffs of Doom

Of course, what goes around comes back around.  This is not always the best of things.  Sure, stuff like art-deco inspired applique, wrap dresses and the sweater suit are great even at the second time around.  But, there are some horrid things that have come back around.  

Puffed-sleeves seemed to have reared their obnoxious heads again.  Ugh.  In virtually all of the recent shows in France there have been puff sleeves.  I have no idea why.  They flatter nothing and look horrid on everyone who is above a size zero.  They add unnecessary volume to an outfit.  And, too much volume makes you look huge, and not in a good way.  Also, they aren't "classic" in the way that a pencil skirt is, so stuff with puff-sleeves tend to look horribly dated 2 weeks after they were made.  

Hopefully the unnecessarily large shoulders stay purely in the realm of couture shows this time around.  Other wise this fall may turn out to be even more depressing than normal!

Picture from

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Loewe Lives!!

Some of the long-storied European fashion houses have more or less gone kaput.  Ones like Vionette, Paquin and Schiaparelli have basically disappeared, despite producing some ground-breaking and wonderful designs.  

Ones of these houses that is trying to rebuild itself up from the forgotten ashes of history is Loewe.  It was started in 1846 in Madrid, Spain and specialized in leather goods.  In the 1960's it started producing ready-to-wear apparel with the help of designers such as Karl Lagerfeld and Armani.  Eventually, the brand grew and was bought by LVMH where it is truly expanding into the international luxury market, where it makes leather goods, ready-to-wear and an impact on fashion.

The Loewe dress pictured is absolutely delicious!  The color is heavenly, the cut is flattering and is the perfect party dress.  It is a wonderful sign that Loewe is still on its rise to being one of the top international luxury brands!

Picture from

Monday, February 2, 2009

The Ancients Were Right!

There are some textiles that have been around for thousands of years that are still useful today!  One of these is ramie.  It has been in use for at least 6,000 years and is native to parts of Asia.  It is linen like in texture and considered antibacterial/antifungal.  Some mummies in Ancient Egypt have even been found to be wrapped in ramie!

Ramie is made from a bush-like plant and is harvested several times a year, up to six.  It is made of the layers of the plant that are just inside the bark that are then processed and spun into fabric.  

Even though ramie has been used for 6,000 years, it is still used today.  Most of the time it is used in China, Japan and Brazil, although some designers have started incorporating the fiber into their fabrics and designs.  One
 of these designers is Marni--in 2008 a number of garments were produced with ramie in the fabric.  Pictured is one such dress--the ramie is blended with synthetics to stabilize it and increase its durability.  Not only is the dress extremely stylish, but the textiles used have truly stood the test of time!

Pictures courtesy of ebay seller "rra2531" and listing number 230322949516

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Where's The Tweed?

It is the spring Couture time of year!  Yes, the time when models dressed like cracked out Cleopatras galavant down the runways.  It is fun, though!

The Chanel Spring 2009 Couture show seems to be widely loved by the critics.  Sure, it is wearable and looks chic and well-tailored.  And, it has the crazy paper head-dresses.  But, it is missing something.

Tweed.  The Chanel show seemed to be completely void of their most signature look of them all--the tweed blazer.  Sure, the nice white tailored blazer pictured is lovely.  But, it isn't the signature Chanel look that will never, ever go out of style.  It is so....weird.  Hopefully, at the ready to wear show, the tweed will make a reappearance.  Because, what is Chanel without tweed?

Picture from

Friday, January 30, 2009

The Ghost Bride

The spring Couture shows are something of legend and I hope to attend one day!  What makes French Couture the special art that it is the level of skill, time and talent that it takes to pull off the shows.

Givenchy is a legendary French fashion house that has recently been trying to revive itself after falling into fashion disrepair.  Well, Tisci sure is trying his best.  The fact that the house was able to put together a Couture show for the Spring that was worthy of being photographed is certainly a victory. 

Tisci is definitely known for being gothic & dark, and even though the collection is primarily in white, it stays true to his over-arching signatures.  Quite frankly, it looks like something a ghostly bride would wear.  Not that it is bad, it actually is a wonderful take on this spring's white-based neutrals and art deco inspired cuts.  It will be interesting to see how the collection is interpreted into the ready to wear!

Picture from

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Some Things Are Just Wrong

There are some things that look great in runway shows and store displays, but don't always work out in reality.  One would be Marni's peep-toe platform boots.  It isn't that they are bad in and of themselves, but boy, with the wrong outfit it is just a mess!

What I am specifically speaking of is the disaster of a combination as exhibited by Mariah Carey that appeared on  Wow, is that no good!  The whole leggings/tights the same color as the boots with the most neutral and boring of outfits just isn't nice.  And, the boots appear to be too big or of a length that just don't look right.  

I get that boots like this were produced by a number of designers.  They have the potential to be great.  But, please, make sure you pair them with an actual outfit and that they look like they fit you!

Picture from

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Another One Bites the Dust

The economy isn't that great right now and has slain many company.  Well, one of those companies that isn't doing so hot is Conde' Nast.  It has decided to shut down its magazine, DOMINO.

DOMINO was the home-decor version of LUCKY MAGAZINE.  It was probably one of the only decorating magazines out that was aimed at younger people who aren't interested in having farm houses like Martha Stewart.  It even had decent cooking suggestions.  It is very sad to see such a new and fun magazine fold!

Picture from

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Ocean of Ideas

Sometimes there are designers that are so interesting and unconventional that their work is more like artwork instead of just something to wear.  A major player in the realm of wearable art is the design group ThreeAsFour.

ThreeAsFour was originally "AsFour", but in 2005 one member left the company due to personal problems.  The three remaining designer
s have continued making their unconventional ideas come to life.  They generally collaborate with major icons like Bjork and Kate Spade.  In recent years, they released a small collection called As FourKateSpade, which included textiles and clothing.  They also frequently use Kate Spade shoes in their shows--probably not what you would expect for super avant-garde fashion designers, but they always defy expectations!

The trio design out of their New York studio and show in New York Fashion Week.  But, they are also known for their very unconventional ways of exhibiting their clothing.  Because they don't just make clothing, but rather all manner of artwork, they are well-known for exhibiting in major museums and other artistic avenues.  

The trio are well-known for their circle-shaped bags and circle-seamed coats, such as ones worn by "Samantha" on SEX AND THE CITY.  They derive much inspiration from nature and in their SS09 collection, even had cut-away sea shell ornaments on their clothing as decorations and clasps.  

Pictures from

Friday, January 16, 2009

Shiny Pretty Things!

In the realm of jewelry there are usually two kinds--cheap costume and expensive real stuff.  The middle ground of do-able priced jewelry with high-quality metals and stones is extremely hard to find.  And, usually if they can be find they either have the world's smallest stones or are incredibly cheaply made.

That is what makes so cool!!  The prices are incredibly reasonable and half the time there is a great discount code available too!  They have stuff of every stone and design to go with just about everything.  Even diamonds!  What really makes it cool is that they will do custom orders, especially for weddings or other events and at a discount.

The earrings pictured at green prehnite and pearls--the ear findings and metal are up to you!  These earrings are absolutely beautiful in person--I know because I wear them all the time!

Picture from

Monday, January 12, 2009

The Yes Dress

There are some dresses that will never go out of style and will always be flattering.  Most of the time, those dresses are also boring.  But, not this one!

This Rick Owens dress from this spring is to die for.  The cut is insanely flattering.  No matter your shape or lumps, it is disguise it and make you look like Heidi Klum.  The color is such that it looks great on everyone and is the perfect neutral.  Imagine how many cute accessories could be worn with the dress!  And, the dress could either be worn casual or for more dressy events--it will just depend on what accessories it is paired with!

Sometimes there are dresses that are exactly perfect.  And, if anyone can come up with something that is perfect, it is Rick!

Picture from

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Sasawashi--Origami Papers for Clothes?!

One of the really cool things about the eco-fashion movement is the innovation in materials.  Textile designers and labs are finding new ways to process natural fibres so that they can be comfortably worn.  One of these new fibers is called "sasawashi".

Sasawashi is a combination of traditional Japanese papers with Japanese herbs that are woven in a new and creative way.  The textile is supposed to be great for people with sensitive skin because it doesn't have stray fiber ends to irritate the skin and make the fabric itchy to the touch.  It is also supposed to be nearly 90% UV-proof and full of vitamins.

One of the designers that is really embracing this new fabric is Linda Loudermilk--she has already incorporated it into a variety of garments in this current season, including denim.  

So, next time you are out shopping and see "sasawashi" on the fiber content tag there's no more wondering!  

Picture from

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

The Face Says Awesome

Okay, so kitchy-goth is just annoying and trite.  I know.  But, something about this watch is just cheeky enough to overcome all of that.  Watches are status symbols and are meant to show professionalism and that you mean business.  Well, hmmm.  Watches can also be boring and stodgy, and lets face it, in the age of cell phones and blackberrys, quite useless.  Why not take a chance and wear something fun!  

This watch is by Marc by Marc Jacobs and is a womens' watch.  Not only does it keep time, it actually looks like fun in an adult way.  And, the colors are nice and neutral so it should actually match with most outfits!

Picture from

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Same Great Seller, Different Name

Ebay for all of its problem, does have a good measure of sellers who are FANTASTIC!!  They have some of the most coveted authentic items at discount prices that arrive quickly and beautifully wrapped.  One of these stellar sellers is "mushroom_city".  Due to recent ill-thought out decisions made by ebay they have had to change their account and it is now "ihave5fatcats".  It is the same great seller with the same *DELISH* goodies, just a different name.  Make sure to add the new name to your favorites!

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Mystery to Me

There are many things about fashion that I just don't get.  Stuff like harem pants, pointy shoes and countless other things.  You can add the Longchamp "pilage" bag to it.  I know, "it fits everything" and "is waterproof".  But, seriously, it is the most boring bag ever.  

The first time I really noticed it was the other day on an episode of WHAT NOT TO WEAR.  Stacy wrested it from a lady and pronounced it "not good enough" and I totally agree.  It is just fine to cramming full of stuff to throw in your car trunk for in the event of an emergency.  But, it just isn't a style object nor chic enough to be considered as a bag to use every day.  The things that people seem to love it for are things that all bags do--hold stuff and repel water (well, a good many bags do this anyway).  But, seriously now, you can do better.

Picture from
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...