— The Fashionista

As a reaction to the prettiness of his spring collection, Erdem Moralioglu started work on his fall clothes by “looking at the codes of what it is that makes a lady—and turning them on their head!” And although the designer stayed true to the ladylike DNA of his brand with elegant silhouettes evocative of mid-century haute couture clients—svelte cocktail dresses, wide-cut evening coats, a short swing jacket with a standaway collar, and the season’s strong sweater and (pleated) skirt combinations—he tweaked the looks in subtle ways that began with the fabrics and gave his work an exciting edge.

“Mixing plastics in with lace felt new and uncomfortable for me,” he said, and so, inspired by latex pieces he discovered in a fetish store, he worked with textile mills in Como, Italy to lacquer his refined fabrics (silky tweeds and those enchanting laces) with a glossy, high-sheen veneer—a sophisticated effect far removed from the original.

Erdem was also thinking of “this woman who eats art and fashion!”—embodied by Peggy Guggenheim, the formidable mid-twentieth-century art collector, dealer, and patron, who held court in her palazzo on the Grand Canal in Venice, an inspiration for the rich Venetian tones and dappled, Impressionistic prints in the show. With art on his mind, it was appropriate that Erdem set his collection in the distinguished White Cube Bermondsey gallery (currently showing Anselm Kiefer’s epic sculptures); a clean backdrop against which to admire the intricate detailing of his clothes—including graphic use of black lace, to veil jacquard prints or re-appliquéd into bold, abstract patterns (on hot pinks, puce, or inky lagoon blues); or a scattering of bright jewels on a coat printed with a shimmer of colors like sunlight on the lagoon (Erickson Beamon made the matching multihued brooches that trimmed coat collars and “jewel” necklines).

He also created trompe l’oeil effects that suggested various garments were being worn together—a strapless cocktail dress that seemed to be layered over a turtleneck, or a corset worn over a simple sleeveless top. And despite the elaboration of technique and decoration, the collection remained as light as air—down to those miraculous shoes created for Erdem by Nicholas Kirkwood that appeared to float above their solid black heels, thanks to the strip of clear Lucite separating the upper sole from the heel itself.

And yes; I am back. I still have 13000 comments to moderate and loads of stuff to fix, but I’ll try to keep you up to date.

Read More

Read More

Polo Ralph Lauren Cable Knit Cashmere Sweater: Polo Ralph Lauren cable knit cashmere sweater with ribbed collar, cuffs and hem. In soft grey, this cashmere sweater will make a versatile addition to a well-stocked knitwear wardrobe. Neutral tones will accent the subtle shade.

Leather iPad case from Valextra with interior flap, logo and elasticated closing band. This vibrant apple green accessory is handcrafted to the highest standard. Around the meeting table, it will make a discreet style statement.

Tan perforated leather gloves from Dents with cream cotton crochet on the back hand and thumb. These expertly crafted gloves will lend refinement to everyday dress. Team with a formal look for timelessly elegant style.

Blue, grey, cream and red fringed wool snowflake scarf from Drakes. In heavyweight wool with a festive design, this classic piece is the ultimate winter accessory. Layered over a chunky jacket, it’s a perfect look for an outdoor adventure.

Read More

Date: June 18, 2011
Location: Milan
The Vibe for Spring 2012: For the man who appreciates the fine tailoring of Corneliani, this season’s summer suits are lightweight and unconstructed. Linen and cottons in shades of gray, ivory, and tobacco are strong and bold, while the soft safari jacket in suede and a washed cotton trench are the early favorites.

There’s a fluidity to the Corneliani cut and silhouette, as if the Corneliani man moves through any territory or situation with ease. His clothes, whose roots lie in traditional Italian tailoring, are laid back yet precise and always made from luxurious fabrics and textiles. Wide notched lapels on double breasted, lightweight suits over loose, long-cut and low waisted trousers were the immediate themes as this collection opened.

Two-button suits and all of the above mixed with turned up, knee-length shorts followed. Airy, light, cotton scarves looped around the neck and rested on soft knits or summer trench coats (waterproof pure silk) and safari jackets tied at the waist with matching belts. Black, leather, cross-strap sandals and canvas dessert boots walked over white sand that covered the entire runway. Defined by a classic elegance that gives a subtle nod to current trends, the Corneliani business is a family affair dating back to the 1930s and this, the first show to open Milan menswear for spring/summer 12, presented the continuation of the sun-bleached tones trend that germinated across the board for AW11/12. White, bone, eggshell, latté, corn blues and slate greys moved to charcoal and black over forty-two looks before designer Sergio Corneliani took to the catwalk to take his bow.

Read More

So, I’m off the coast of Africa for two weeks, and I decided to do a post on what to wear on the beach. Excuse my lingo, but fat german men with boobs and chavy british tourists aren’t exactly inspiring, but I’ve been trying to keep you posted as often as I possible can.

“Once in a while, out of the regular ready-to-wear cycle, Karl Lagerfeld and Chanel lead the fashion pack to a place of fantasia, a total-immersion experience where the meaning of “croisière’” is at its most glamorous.

“This is one of the most beautiful places in the world, no?” Lagerfeld said, sitting on a deck overlooking the Mediterranean Sea at the Hôtel du Cap-Eden Roc in Antibes, the playground of the rich since the 1920s, and the setting he chose to place “resort” back in one of its original settings on the French Riviera. “This hotel is flawlessly kept, and there is a different dress code here. One has to dress to match the yachts. It cannot be sloppy,” he remarked. “But I didn’t want to do anything retro. People have never had as much money here as they do at the moment, and this is about how to spend your money but spend it in style.”

As he spoke, the sun was setting, shedding a pink light over a pale-blue sea. “This is the time of day when you can tell real diamonds from fake,” Lagerfeld observed. “And here, they are real.”

The Chanel diamonds to which he was referring—shooting stars, feathers, and pins from the fine jewelry collection—were pinned liberally to the shoulders and necklines of narrow mimosa-yellow and lavender tweed suits, the vivid colors reminiscent of the early-blooming flowers to be seen in the South of France.

That was just for starters, though, for as the show progressed, it became one of Lagerfeld’s narratives, with girls seeming to be making their way up from the beach in swimsuits, covered up with Chanel jackets or black and white cashmere wraps, and moving along a garden runway. Kristen McMenamy was among the models—storming along and surrounded by men—in a kind of live trailer for the movie Lagerfeld was about to screen for more 300 guests at a party come nightfall.

And that’s where the serious reveling began. The film (starring McMenamy, Amanda Harlech, Anna Mouglalis, and a cast of Chanel friends) was a drama about inheritances, sparring ex-wives, house parties, casinos, and a soupçon of lesbianism. After that, the party continued with a set from Bryan Ferry, followed by dancing until sunrise among a crowd highly reluctant to wend its way back to reality.”-Vogue

Any woman planning to visit a resort at the same time that resort collections hit stores would be wise to check out Tomas Maier’s selection for Bottega Veneta. There are trunks-worth of elegant, escapist clothes: silky T-shirts in primitive stripes paired with pajama-style pants, lightweight safari-style jackets in canvas and silk, breezy sleeveless dresses in turquoise or hot pink. Then again, a minimalist might argue that all she would need in her carryon is the sophisticated bandeau swimsuit in a subtle brown print with matching cardigan plus maybe the thin belt with tiger shell closure, and away she flies.

There are options, too, for the woman who prefers to stick closer to home in the winter. “Bright color can lift you up when the city is sad and melancholic,” Maier says, holding up a magenta shift with a few slightly unfinished ruffles down the front. “You’d just wear this with a coat on top.” (The double-breasted jacket in iridescent leather would be a good choice.) Or add tights, he suggests, to his heavy silk, pale taupe dress. Not rocket science, surely, but it shows that Maier is aware that the fantasy of fashion must sometimes acknowledge the practicality of reality. “It’s buy now, wear now,” he says.

The same goes for accessories, and Maier’s offerings here are as strong as ever. (If you ever wondered how many ways there are to weave leather, he’s the person to ask.) The bags come big or small, in a mix of leather and rope, or treated so that when it’s crunched, the shape stays. Squishing the side of a brown tote, he says, “If something’s not worn in, it doesn’t look like it belongs to the girl.”-Vogue
Chanel and Bottega were my favorite 2012 resort collections. Earthly tones, texture, simple, yet so elegant and expressing. Chin, chin, bottoms up, wherever you are, there is never an excuse to look like a damn fool. Ugly is free, but good feels so much better. And remember, nothing looks as good, as skinny feels. Keep off that t-bone steak those Turkish, Spanish, or Italian waiters offer you on the street.

Read More

When she took over at McQueen last year, Sarah Burton quietly promised that she’d try to bring a new sense of softness and female-minded wearability to the collection and, despite being just a tad busy these past couple months, she’s already delivering. The spotlight trained on Burton now is relentless. Even a resort collection, which might formerly have slipped by without much comment, is now the subject of immense interest, especially as it’s likely to contain semi-hidden, non-runway gems that might be picked out by the likes of, say, Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, or Michelle Obama for tours, day events, photo-calls, state dinners, and the like.

Any surface reading of resort is proof that Burton is already brilliant at interpreting clothes for all these modern calibrations of formality. The current collection—built around the centrifugal idea of romantic utility—contains everything from signature McQueen tailored pants and high-necked white blouses to graceful mid-length skirts with a luxurious ruffled hem before going all the way through to embassy-ready gold-embellished suits and ball-worthy fantasias made out of fairy-fingered embroidery on tulle.

Part of her genius is the way she’s staying completely faithful to the McQueen templates while also easing the silhouette to present it at its most flattering. Two spectacular dresses with trains—one with white lace, inspired by shells, on pink, and the other with gold bullion cornfield-and-flower embroidery set against nude tulle—are cut to the body and beautifully slim from the torso to thigh before trailing out into layered skirts. The raised waists of the coats, jackets, and day-dresses, all cinched with wide-strapped leather belts, are similarly calculated to strike a great proportion. Add the elongating new length, with its swanky, swishing movement, and you have something that exudes a grown-up, modern presence without any hint of stiffness or fashion-for fashion’s-sake.

Close-up, too, this collection only gets more desirable. Burton’s smart analysis of how to break beautiful fashion into wearable parts has lead her to make a fantastic white ribbon dress (which surely has Middleton’s name on it), but also to offer a pencil skirt and a gorgeous peplum jacket as accessible variants. As for Burton working away in her studio in Clerkenwell? She shows every sign of handling the pressure with the serenity that allowed her to get through the royal wedding with such aplomb and privacy and, even better, the sparkle in her eye says she’s enjoying every minute of it.

Read More

Acne presented its spring collection on a long runway against a huge mirror backdrop that reflected back the audience’s view of itself. It turned the already cavernous show space’s four graffiti-tagged floors (or was it five? or six? After a while climbing, you gave up counting) above London’s New Oxford Street into a venue bigger than it really was. A neat trick, given that Acne has magnified its ambitions for itself, mirroring the story that many in the fashion world has aspired to tell in the last two decades—that is, doing much more than that you originally became known, or even if you’re lucky, renowned, for. Acne, a Swedish denim company that coasted to the top with its skinny-fit jeans when Stockholm became the epicenter of the five-pocket world five or so years ago, spawned a million imitators. Yet its creative director, Jonny Johansson, has long nursed a dream for the company to be more than a purveyor of cool denim, wanting it to be taken seriously as a name that can show what it can do on the runway: to be the little jeans label that could. So the Acne crew headed to London, and here they all are, a few seasons on, in a vast silver-mirrored room, showing that Acne can indeed do what Johansson always hoped it could, and rather brilliantly at that.

Johansson has for some time now been playing with the idea of super-inflated volume, just as Raf Simons was starting to articulate the same thought at Jil Sander. If Simons went off down the classic-couture route, to startlingly chic effect, Johansson stayed within the tropes of street style, blowing up sweatshirts, biker leathers, track pants, and men’s shirts. Often they worked, and sometimes they didn’t, but here, for spring 2012, it all coalesced beautifully: partly because of his great color palette (gleaming white and indigo played off pink, rust, orange, and purple); partly because Johansson has learned to deflate the look and scale back the proportions of some of his designs; and partly because jeans of the faded-blue stonewashed or white cotton drill varieties played such a key role in the show. For instance, Johansson sculpted raw denim into an A-line skirt worn with a gleaming black, blue, and silver leather biker jacket, or as a bustle-back coat over a nude dress with star cutouts, while the white drill was worked into wide crop pants traced with seams, or as a flared skirt worn under a billowing black cotton dress and a slick/sick 1970s-green sleeveless jacket.

Yet for all the proportion play, Johansson did that seemingly simple but often fiendishly elusive thing to achieve, especially thus far this season: give cool girls around the globe something new and fun to wear every day. From Acne next spring, that could mean a techno couture parka over a cocktail dress, or a leather skirt as buckled and zippered as any Perfecto, or loafers and flat ankle-strap sandals swishing with oversize tassels, which caused a little sigh of desire from more than one woman sitting near me every time they appeared.

Read More