Thursday, April 30, 2009

Luxe Lust: Alexander McQueen Silk Embroidered Cape Pencil Dress... WITH FEATHERS!

($1598, Alexander McQueen, Gilt Groupe)

Are we human? Or are we dancer?

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

10 Jumpers Under $100!

Hey guess what. I FREAKING HATE hot weather.

What I'm trying to say is, check out 10 really cute jumpers that flatter lots of body types (also, can I just say, I HATE the term "bodycon." It's dumb. Please stop saying it) AND cost less than $100! Also, why do they call them jumpers? Playsuits? Whatever. I just wanna spend all of the days between now and October laying around in airconditioning and wishing I lived in John Ritter's apartment in Three's Company.

($93.78, Totem,
L-L-L-Love the lips!

HORSES? On a JUMPER? Could America GET any better?

I am thisclose to buying this.

One of my favey things about jumpers: they're thisclose to being pajamas.

($97, Fluxus,
This one would be so cute with a tiny tank underneath. A tank of YOUR CHOOSING! You can just DO WHATEVER YOU WANT!

($98, Gestuz,
Your garden variety harem-style jumper. No big whoop.

So it's technically a dress, but whatevs. It's late.

($39, Lulus)
Fun! Picnicky!

($69, Sass & Bide,
Mmmm. Love me some elastic waistband!

($88, Lark & Wolff by Steven Alan, Urban Outfitters)
The sorta-fancy, dress-up-for-work yachting jumper. For your business meetings. On a boat.

Night night!

Perforated Plz: F-Troupe's White Patent Leather Saddle Shoes

($158, f-troupe,
Usually white shoes are a HUGE nein, but these white patent perforated saddle shoes -- they're perforated with teensy little STARS -- break through the busted code and come out clear on the side of awesome sauce. And they remind me of the Steve Madden Skiip perforated flats I loved for so long.

A cursory Internet search brings up only the 8.5 at Zappos, so, if you're a 8.5 AND you want these shoes, it's SO your lucky day!

Growing in to a personal uniform

Inspiration from Oily Boy
Following an interesting article over on Valet, EJ posted a thought provoking look at the idea of having a personal unform which left such an impression on me that I'm still pondering it. I like the idea of owning and becoming one or two outfits. The clothes would come together to form a signature of sorts, a recognisable trademark. Once you've found that secret formula (if it even exists) of a great outfit the key should be to tweak as you go, accessories and colour can certainly be experimented with to breathe fresh life in to any outfit. In a relatively recent feature on WWD Thom Browne stated...“It’s the beauty in the uniformity that I find refreshing. Not having so much choice is what I find refreshing,” Indeed, Browne is well known for his regimented daily habits, which extend to the shrunken grey suits and white button-down oxford shirts he dons every morning but could this be for me?

Earlier this week Susie declared to me that when she hits a certain age she will embrace the dark colour palette and relaxed fit world of Yohji Yamamoto for her personal uniform which made me question who I would turn to as I matured. During an afternoon of procrastination I found myself discussing this very subject with John. He declared he would 'love to be a Yohji and Issey man with a sprinkling of Comme' for good measure and this certainly struck a chord with my me. John also recalled his pleasant surprise at viewing images of CdG x H&M collaboration launch and noticing a significant number of middle aged plus enthusiasts thumbing the rails. We both found this loyalty to certain brands admirable. It soon became apparent that the names we were discussing were extremely Japanese focused, including Visvim, Porter Yoshida as well as those already mentioned above). For us Japanese old man style is hard to beat and this is just one of the reasons we love Oily Boy so much. The gentlemen contained in the pages are of a certain generation who have learned how to wear their clothes not let their clothes wear them.

My personal uniform could quite easily come from Casely-Hayford's aw09 collection.

I decided to sleep on the question of who I would turn to to create my personal uniform today. My answer constantly evolves because I'm still in a stage of experimentation...I've not quite reached that age yet where I can say..I want to wear this, this is me and then stick to it. However, my current pick of designers to supply such a uniform would be Casely-Hayford. Along with Fashion156 we were offered a sneak peak at their AW09 collection long before anyone else had and I instantly fell for the mix of tailoring and sportswear. A number of labels attempt to combine a street and sport aesthetic with formal tailoring but very few truly pull it off and the father and son design duo undeniably do so. The tailoring fits perfectly with my current sartorial aesthetic as it is full of interesting features such as a dropped hem on a single breasted jacket and the ribbed cuffed trousers in tweed jersey. This is tailoring for the 21st gentleman and I would love to be that gentleman. Which designer(s) would you turn to in order to create your personal uniform?

Fashion Must-Haves of This Season. Fashion Spring-Summer 2009.

Here come nine most fashionable things of the Summer 2009. Fashionable clothes, shoes and accessories that you MUST have in your wardrobe this summer.

1. Heel-strap sandal booties.
This Fall and Winter we get used to booties. And now in summer neither fashion-conscious people nor designers want to part with them. As a result we have very open booties or very closed sandals. You can wear them on bare feet or with pantyhose. Sandal booties look very sexy and beautiful. Anyway this must-have is a real hit of the catwalks. Look for them in Yves Saint Laurent, Kenzo, Maison Martin Margiela, Paul Smith, Chanel and Alexander McQueen's collections.

Models Chanel and Bottega Veneta

2. Overalls.
This summer overalls will compete with our favorite dresses, all the more so fashion designers prepared for us many variants of the overalls. You can put on black classical overall going to your office, light coloured overall is good for party, short cotton overall is for beach. Interesting models of overalls you can find in Moschino Cheap & Chic, D&G, Missoni and Fendi's collections.

Matthew Williamson, Fendi and D&G's models

3. Stylish separate swimsuit.
Such swimsuits make silhouettes visually more graceful and this makes them very popular! But there is one disadvantage about them - sunburn will be quite fanciful. But designers of such trends as Agent Provocateur, La Perla, Topshop and Marc by Marc Jacobs are absolutely comfortable with that!

Models Melissa Odabash and Topshop

4. Sunglasses Ray-Ban Wayfarer.
Sunglasses Ray-Ban Wayfarer are "HELLO" from 80's. In 80's they were extremely popular in Hollywood. Let's remember "The Blues Brothers" with Daniel Aykroyd and John Belushi or "Rain Man" with Tom Cruise. Today the Ray-Ban sunglasses are favourite accessory of Hollywood celebrities such as Nicole Richie, Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen, Mischa Barton and others.

5. Military style of jackets.
This thing became must-have in spring Fashion Week in Paris. According to streetstyle photos it is the most popular attire there. Duh! This thing underlines a figure very nicely!
3.1 Phillip Lim, Balmain, Topshop

6. Antique style dresses.
In new season ancient Greek goddess is a beauty standard for many designers and modelers. Asymmetric light dresses with complicated drapery are very popular. Versace, Valentino, Elie Saab and Lanvin offer us such chic attires.

Lanvin, Elie Saab, Versace

7. Torn jeans.
This season the condition of the jeans is much more important than its shape. This summer jeans style of 90's is very popular. Small and big holes, long and short. Many holes or just few of them - as you wish. Besides you can make this fashionable thing by yourself! Or you can find it in Balmain, Acne or House of Holland collections.

8. Bright shawls.
Here comes hippie and ethnic style! It keeps make us glad. This accessory will make any boring classical suit positive and summery. It can be tied up as a turban on your head.

Dior, Paul Smith, Missoni.

9. Wide bangles.
Wide bangles are extremely fashionable three summers running. However this season we can see wooden bangles not only plastic ones. Besides, this summer you can wear two or even three wide bangles on one wrist. It is very fashionable!

Plastic bangles Fendi, wooden bangles Bottega Veneta

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Ariel Gordon: Not-Boring Wedding Rings For Not A Fortune

($1,240, Ariel Gordon)
Check out L.A. jewelry designer Ariel Gordon's wonderfully modern geometrical 14-karat gold "Hex" ring with diamond points. I'd definitely wear this as a wedding ring (except I'm going to try to uphold the Jewish tradition of wearing a solid, unbroken band with no ornamentation or stones.) Of course, I'd wear it ANYWAY as a REGULAR ring if someone would like to purchase it for me, say, as a gift for being an awesome blogger. The Hex ring also comes in 10-karat gold for $880.

I love how modern and clean it is but also quietly chic AND kind of looks like a nut. Not like a squirrel nut but like whatever people who use tools use for things.

Also, Ariel won Shopstyle's emerging designer competition, so if you enter "SHOPSTYLE" on Ariel Gordon's site, you can get 25% off your purchase!... Of the Hex ring... for me!

... Plus, check out Spike pendant:
($315, Ariel Gordon)
Which would look positively smart AND menancing with... EVERYTHING (on me!)

McQueen Rethinks Runway

McQueensbury Rules was the perfect balance of theatre on the one side and desirable yet wearable clothes on the other. The show of the season for me by far.

WWD broke the news today that after wow-ing us all with his theatrical yet highly wearable AW09 collection, Alexander McQueen will be moving on from the standard runway format. He certainly has provided us with some of the best, most memorable shows over the years, but this summer, the designer will present his collection in some other format. The designer and his team were one of the few designers who were able to create something special on the catwalk but McQueen is a true showman so I am sure that he will blow us away. His publicists say they are working on “something very special,” which will definitely not be a sit-down runway show and although Milan will certainly miss him, he will still give us something awesome. McQueen constantly surprises me. In a recent interview with Numéro Homme magazine, he extolled the virtues of choosing soaps over fashion and made me laugh to myself (whilst getting the odd strange look from other folk in Borders...oh the shame!).

"You know it’s hard enough doing this job, I don’t have to live it as well. I’d rather sit at home watching ‘Coronation Street.’“

As long as McQueen manages to peel himself off the sofa from season to season, he will continue to push fashion forward in whatever way he chooses. How would you like to see McQueen show his next collection? I have visions of McQueen directing an episode of the nation's favourite soaps..just imagine Jack Duckworth in McQueen tailoring...or maybe not!

Paper Cut Tailoring

Our recent trip to Antwerp saw us take in some culture as well as just the over eating and stock sale hunting. One of the highlights for me, was the trip to the MOMU to marvel at the Paper Fashion exhibition. The exhibition brings together the most remarkable collection of paper fashion creations. In addition to the historic objects from Ancient China and Japan, the exhibition includes designs by Hussein Chalayan, A.F. Vandevorst, John Galliano, Walter Van Beirendonck, Dirk Van Saene, Issey Miyake to name just a few. Although there has been no real question of paper fashion as such since 1968 (previously anything was possible with paper fashion from pop art to political campaign slogans), countless important fashion houses and designers have experimented with paper or with materials that resemble paper.

Of course the exhibition had a heavy womenswear slant but their were still the odd nugget of menswear to savour. Namely James Rosenquist's famous paper suit for Hugo Boss that he wore to Pop art openings and parties in the 1960s. Rosenquist in his paper suit transcended mere fashion and became the perfect embodiment of the era.

Recently remade of Tyvek(r) (a nonwoven fabric made from spun-bonded olefin) brings Rosenquist's paper suit into the new millenium. This extraordinary garment represents the increasingly explicit link between art and fashion and marries the most enduring form of menswear with the "throwaway" nature of paper.

The fragility of paper stimulated the textiles industry to seek out alternative materials that looked like paper, but which offered more possibilities. Ultimately, Tyvek proved to be the only one of these materials that would continue to be used in the textiles industry to the present day. When I posted about Saskia Diez's use of the fabric I was most intrigued by it and meant to explore its use further (Miuccia used it expertly to provide monochromatic colour blocks for MiuMiu SS07 collection - it became the outerwear of choice from the bomber jackets to the boxy plebian coats with micro collars) and was even pointed in the direction of Cloth House where the fabric is available. Following a great deal of papier inspiration at the exhibition I will make that trip to Berwick Street this weekend for a closer look.

Monday, April 27, 2009

ADORBS ALERT: Tarina Tarantino Feather Drop Earri

($70, Tarina Tarantino,
I'm ruving these Tarina Tarantino feather/ rhinestone drop earrings. Most of you (meeeee tooo included) immediately think of Disney when you think Tarina Tarantino, and while I love her signature Disney pieces too, I love these feathery earrings -- espesh the '70s-meets-nows juxtaposish between the old-school roach clip feathers and the mall punk colors. Can't handle bright pink and electric blue? Go more old-school roach clip:
($72, Tarina Tarantino,
Also, two things: Karmaloop ALWAYS has promo codes. Try sn23820. AND, I met Tarina Tarantino! She ruuuuuuuules!

The $1 Million Peacock Wedding Dress

I don't really care if the ENTIRE PEACOCK POPULATION needs to be become extinct in order for me to own this peacock dress, exhibited at a wedding expo at in China. I just WANT it. Main factor deterrent -- I don't have 2000+ peacocks. Other issue: I don't have $1.5 million dollars. Minor setbacks. Actually, no, I don't want it. It's sorta scary looking, and it makes me feel like we all owe peacocks a major apology. I just wanted to make that joke about the entire peacock population becoming extinct to make one dress.

Witness the horror yourself at LuxuryLaunches. Or, check out more reasonable peacock fashions, dresses and accessories.

Finding Bruno in Antwerp

As you all know I was fortunate enough to spend a long weekend in the quiet city of Antwerp and whilst admiring the architecture, exploring the home of Rubens, and eating far too much food we had more than enough time to hunt and gather some stock sale bargains. After the initial sale and resulting disappointment of the offerings at Ann Demeulemeester (the prices were somewhat off putting but the quality and stock in my size was also surprisingly lacklustre) and Dries Van Noten (which was huge and impressive but alas only large sizes were available for all of the good stuff...torture) we swung by Bruno Pieter's sale and my mood became a whole lot cheerier. The post therefore title does not refer to me watching an advanced screening of the latest guise of Sascha Baron Cohen causing laughter and embarrassment with his flamboyant Austrian fashionista's antics but rather nabbing a couple of gems from Bruno Pieter's menswear line.

The art of layering and clashing pattern. A favourite look from Pieter's AW08 collection...I was very tempted by the jacket but alas my size wasn't available!

In his role as Creative Director at Hugo by Hugo Boss (surely it should read by Bruno Pieters?) Pieters kicked off AW09 proceedings in Paris with a dizzying array of patterns and razor sharp tailoring which made me sit up and take notice. When I saw that the Belgium born and Royal Academy of Fine Arts graduate's name was included in the comprehensive list of stock sales in Antwerp I was eager to see what was on offer from his own, lesser known line. Where Hugo is in question he maintains a more geometric, German-style register whilst his own line is marked by romanticism and wonderful detailing. With only two shown collections I was worried that the amount of menswear on offer would be limited but I was more than pleasantly surprised by the rail after rail of pieces for me to try on. There was so much to tempt me but I carefully selected what I knew would fit in my wardrobe whilst adding something to it.

Here I am proudly modeling my favourite purchase. After a quick bit of research on I am almost certain that this shirt comes from his AW07 collection. The detailing of the double collar is particularly interesting and at 90 Euros I jumped at the chance at owning my first piece of Bruno Pieter's.

After living with Susie this past year she has brain washed me and converted me in to a disciple of grey jersey and I could not resist this super soft long sleeve t shirt complete with subtle elbow pad detailing. This is officially my new favourite t shirt and I will no doubt wear it to death.

Elsewhere, there were a number of interesting pieces at the Tim van Steenbergen sale but I was pleased with my purchases and showed a surprising amount of self control. He is a designer I will be investigating further given he is quite established in Belgium. I will certainly plan in a return trip next time for the next round of stock sales, hopefully next year the pound will be a little stronger...

A fitting setting for your life story

Earlier this month I mentioned that your wardrobe really is much more than a piece of furniture. My chat with Patrick Grant over his E. Tautz label first made me see that a wardrobe is a story telling medium, with your life's style being playing the starring role. The contents should therefore deserve to be housed in something special. It is difficult to see your wardrobe as anything more than a cheap piece of furniture if like mine at home, it is tiny and poorly made. During my weekend trip to Antwerp I was fortunate enough to find, use and fall in love with my dream wardrobe. Ordinarily during a short city break I live out of my suitcase, hanging up the odd shirt which screams to be cared for a little more carefully and leaving the rest (somewhat erratically) folded up or tossed together in my bulging case. The B&B we stayed in this long weekend was wonderfully decorated and furnished (we spent the first hour or two taking all of the antiques and knick-knacks in) and our his&her double wardrobes were really something special. So special in fact that before exploring the city and nabbing the odd stock sale bargain we took great pleasure in hanging up and neatly folding each item. The Valet wardrobe was an impressive size complete with separate compartments which were beautifully labelled. My favourite features were the trouser rack (so much better than hanging four pairs of trousers on one hanger) and the compartments reserved for items less favoured today including collars and studs. Everything had its place and it all made sense. It really was a wardrobe fit to tell the life story of any man. Returning home, my packed wardrobe looked even more inadequate. For my next wardrobe I think I'll have to venture further a field than the Ikea on the outskirts of Wembley.

Halston Boots is the Summer Boots

As I was having may daily dose of blog/website reading, I came across the new Halston Boots. Usually, I am not a boot-fan but after I've seen theses knee-high and calf-skimming boots in black, fuchsia suede and metallic bronze colors, suddenly I fell in love with them. I should also mention their gorgeous stiletto heels!

As you can see, these boots are like gladiator sandals. It aims to give you a chic and sleek look while enjoying the summer air with its cute cut outs.

Photo via net-a-porter magazine

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Hyères we go with menswear talent

Hyères for menswear. Bandit Couture by Thomas Trautwein.

Last year I was fortunate to visit the Hyères festival for the first time and was blown away by the location, atmosphere and talent on show. Unfortunately this year I'm unable to be a part of it but will follow the goings on via A Shaded View and festival's very own blog. In my place (haha) are Jefferson Hack, Kris Van Assche, Fantastic Man editor Gert Jonkers to name but a few, who will be hard at work in the sun-drenched South of France judging the competition. The history of winners that have made it big is certainly impressive; Henrik Vibskov, Ute Ploier and Romain Kremer. Despite this impressive list, no menswear designer has ever won the Grand Prize but this could change in this 24th edition of the competition as four of the ten final selections are menswear collections. Susie posted a selection of images from each of the finalists on DD and I just had to share my personal favourites...

Alice Knackfuss' Heimwärts

If anyone is going to break the menswear, my money is split between Germany’s Alice Knackfuss and Paris based Thomas Trautwein. Kanckfuss' romantic tailoring takes its poetic inspiration further than most to with Rilke quotes sewn into armbands. Trautwein's collection titled “Bandit Couture” is my particular favourite because I just love his dark, detailed tailoring (for more information on the designer and the collection visit ASVOF) but this is based upon first impressions and all could change as the competition unravels. I am green with envy at all those lucky folk fortunate enough to play their part in the South of France...especially as rain is forecast in London tomorrow but I am so pleased that there is so much menswear on offer!

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Matthew Williamson For H&M Is Like ALL PEACOCKS, ALL THE TIME!

(Image via:

BLAST AND DAMN! Matthew Williamson's H&M collection, which hits stores RIGHT THIS FUCKING MINUTE is ALL FUCKING PEACOCKS, practically!!! (And you KNOW how I feel about PEACOCKS!)

The collection is in 200 H&M stores worldwide including these three NYC H&M locations, which are accordingly mobbed.

You've seen Matthew Williamson's peacock dress on Katy Perry, and, for better or for worse, Nicky Hilton.
(Image via

That peacock clutch alone is making me cry real little-girl tears out of grown-up eyes. As is the tiger-print dress below. Weeps of a million.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Lux Lust: 3.1 Phillip Lim Animal Print Skirt

This 3.1 Phillip Lim purple and gold lurex mini skirt is so hot that it's kinda giving me a Pat Benatar-meets-Pat Field boner right now. AND it's even got pockets! Style schwing!

($365, 3.1 Phillip Lim,

Picture Postcard: The readers

Image courtesy of Cout Que Coute

Numéro Homme is one of those magazine I sneakily flick through whilst sipping an Americano at Borders (cheeky I know, but I spend enough money on magazines as it is!) but the above image made me ponder the pages longer than usual. The latest issue (Issue 17, SS09) features an amazing black and white editorial shot by none other than Karl Lagerfeld. The above image taken from the Dynasty editorial depicts a scene very similar to how I like to think you guys read the blog. Ha! The sharp tailoring combined with the slight awkwardness and fogginess leave me with a quintessentially English feeling which I just had to share with you.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Go There Do That: NYC Lord & Taylor "Love At First Sight" Shopping Event, Thursday, April 23

You FORGOT there was a Lord & Taylor in NYC, didn't you? I usually forget. Usually I think of Lord & Taylor as a musty, moldy old batcave, but it looks like they're stepping up their game and joining the new millennium with boutiquey brands like Robert Rodriguez, Plenty by Tracy Reese, Tibi, Trina Turk, Anna Sui, Cynthia Steffe, ABS, Rich & Skinny, Laila, La Rok, Yoanna Barashi, and more.

See for yourself this Thursday, April 23rd, at Lord & Taylor's Lord & Taylor's Love At First Sight shopping event frm 6 -8. DJs, complimentary spa services from Oasis Day Spa (turn down a free spa service, and I don't even wanna know you), gifts and things, etc. Go check it out, and see if L&T has steppethed up their game, 'kay? And report back, 'kay?