Monday, June 29, 2009

Such dolls

Design duo Viktor Horsting and Rolf Snoeren had great logic while they were planning their FW 2009 ad campaign. Why not replace doll-faced models with...dolls? DUHHH, right? Kidding, of course. You can find out more about these chic figurines here.

Fashion currently has a soft spot for big-eyed, doll faced gals after going through infatuations with curvaceous babes of the '80s and grungey waifs of the '90s (they're all still loved, though). What makes a model doll-like? A perfect mix of a petite nose, round cheeks, a cute pout...and then some. Here are some models who possess such a face...

Lily Cole, of course! I wasn't a big fan of her childish features at first but once I found out that she attends Cambridge University and earned top marks, I thought she definitely deserved some respect!

Left: Moschino I Love Love fragrance campaign: the ad that freaked me out. Right: From Fashion Rocks! 2006. She plays the role of Alice in Marilyn Manson's movie that has been under production since 2005. I think her face is perfect for a sort of nightmarish Grimm Brothers story character.

I don't know too much about Heather Marks, I'll admit, since she started fading from the fashion scene when I started learning more about it. Heather's pre-Fashion Week diet log in New York Mag's Grub Street inspired me to convert to a more nutritious diet (which was VERY DIFFICULT since I lived on a college campus). The part that seemed most intriguing to me: she eats meat but has that food consciousness that vegans possess.

Left: Cover girl for German Vogue, October 2004. Right: face of the Anna Sui SS 2005 campaign.

Vlada Roslyakova, of course, is a very renowned doll face! Though I have noticed that the bags under her eyes are getting puffier and puffier (I don't think the cigs help either), I still think she's an awesome model.

Left: A Madonna-esque Vlada in David Vasiljevic's "Valley Girl/ Disco Queen" from Numéro Tokyo July/August 2009. I seriously want to purchase this issue just to get my hands on a physical copy of this girlishly pink editorial. Right: from the Top Models La Nouvelle Vague supplement to Paris Vogue April 2008. This picture shows how tired she often looks, especially back in 2008. I was so very fortunate to be in France when the April issue of Paris Vogue and the supplement were released. It was one of the only purchases I made during my European trip!

Here's a doll face who is not often mentioned: Lindsay Ellingson. Her rounded facial features and big buggish eyes easily make her the odd but beautiful beauty that casting directors look for.

Left: part of the Banila Co. campaign. Doesn't she have such a pretty pout?? Right: After seeing her "Street Style" picture in Teen Vogue (taken by Craig Arend), I began my search for an oversized light blue blouse. In the meantime, I imitated her look by wearing my collared Gap blouse, Stussy coat (yes, it's Stussy, but it looks quite refined), black Target skinny jeans, and a vintage royal blue scarf.

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One of my newest favorites is the very adorable, pretty-eyed, young, and articulate Imogen Morris-Clarke! She's young but she's not the wild child who's ditching the normality of school life for parties with in-crowds. She takes school quite seriously, focusing on her exams before Fashion Week SS 2009 as much as she could, according to her interview with Pony-Ryder (which is possibly the greatest time-killer ever), and going straight back to school after Fashion Week FW 2009. I respect her so much for that, especially being an academics-focused student. Hmm...must do a Model Love feature on her someday.

Left: "NEO-romantic", an editorial from Vogue Italia June 2009. Looking creepily cute in a monochromatic photograph taken by Emma Summerton, known for her chilling blue hued captures. Right: Gorgeous in winged black liner and red lipstick backstage at Dolce & Gabbana FW 2009.

Okay, I haven't mentined any non-Caucasian models yet, I know. But here she comes... Though Emma Pei's eyes aren't very large, her soft, rounded features make her a great example of an Asian doll face. She's one of my very favorite models, but pretty much all the Asian models who prevail on the runway are favorites. Naturally...since I'm Asian I'm a bit biased towards Asian models hehe...

Left: "The Power of Art", a photo editorial by photog Nick Haymes for Vogue China June 2008, one of the Vogue issues I wish I owned. Right: At a party for Lane Crawford's Beijing store opening, taken by The Sartorialist.

Of course, the first person who comes to mind for most of us when the word "doll" is mentioned is Gemma Ward, though many critics called her facial features "alien-like". She even played a character called "Dollface" in that poorly received horror flick The Strangers. But looking past the "doll" label, I think she's gorgeous in an unconventional way.

Left: "La Cité des Anges" from Vogue Paris October 2005. So ethereal...this is from one of my favorite photo eds shot by Patrick Demarchelier. Right: John Galliano SS 2006. This may seem weird, but this picture made me love Gemma's a non-obsessive way. I knew who Gemma was when I was around 16 years old, searching for her actual Myspace (which I eventually found but it's bookmarked on my other computer and anyway it's kind of wrong to intrude on someone's private life. I repeat: NOT OBSESSIVE.) and discovering a Myspace fanpage for the model instead. This picture was posted on the profile page and I loved those lilac-glossed lips! Some might disagree with me when I say SHE HAS THE PERFECT POUT.

That was a long post...I know I missed a lot of models... Which of your favorite doll faces go unmentioned? How about unfavorite doll faces? Who do you think lost their doll features with age (and a few pregnancies cough Natalia*)?

*For the record, Natalia Vodianova is one of my favorite models ever. She became one of my first favorites after I found out that she has three children. Mom models!

AHH TOO MANY PEEKTURES! Can't be too specific but here are some credits:, tFS,,,,,, I LOVE YOU ALL FOR THE UPLOADS! If I didn't credit your picture, I am so sorry and please tell me so I can name your site/username!

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Models are too young

Study of a Boy 1 & 2, 2007

Since blogging got popular, accessing info on artists, both rising and renowned, has never been easier. You don't have to be a super fancy schmancy art connoseuir to appreciate all kinds of artistic mediums. Loretta Lux most recently piqued my interest; yes, her name sounds nice, but I was drawn by her strangely striking portraits of children that are subtle such that they are uncomplicated by loud colors and jagged shapes. Although subdued by neutral colors and creamy textures, her painting-like photographs are so eerie because of her subjects.

The Walk, 2004

These children, who sort of remind me of those kids from The Village of the Damned, unexpectedly drew my attention with their gaze and blank faces. The unsettling feeling that Lux's art delivers is formed by the children's unnatural poses, milky skin colors, and unexpressive faces. And the quiet, stark environments that the children are pictured in don't exactly ease the tension.

From top to bottom: Paulin, 2002; Vogue Italia July 2009, Editorial: A Singular Style, Photographer: Tom Munro, Model: Sessilee Lopez

The poses especially reminded me of the way fashion models position themselves for a pictures. Unlike Lux's models, fashion models are asked to show lots of expression, but in both cases, the models' bodies are positioned for someone else. But in no way do the subjects look vulnerable with faces that say, "Whatchu lookin' at?", transfixing the viewer's gaze. Lux won't reveal her methods to achieve her smooth-lined works that are both highly priced and highly sought. But the techniques are best kept secret, leaving the aesthetic quality of her works undeterred.

Okay, off-topic, but most recently, one death has been coming after another. Three celebrities -- Ed McMahon, Farrah Fawcett, and Michael Jackson -- and one family member, my grandma, who I believe is finally at peace after years of suffering from cirrhosis. RIP

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Frivolous Fun! - Swatch Bijoux baubles

Swatch — the poor man's plastic alternative to too-extravagant-to-touch-let-alone-wear Rolex and Piaget watches. Too bad Southern California has so few Swatch stores; while I was in Europe, Swatch shops were everywhere! I peeked inside every store I saw and looked at the cute little watches from the Ladies collections. Even my mom's hometown, Guangzhou, China, holds five stores and two flagships!

My younger cousin used to frequent Swatch stores while she lived in China and after I showed her the pretty Love Explosion ring I found in the Chinese newspaper, she presented me with all the Swatch watches she gathered in her hometown. Lucky girl... But what I'm really interested in are these charming little rings! I just realized that last sentence was punny. If you're a huge fan of all things cute then maybe you wouldn't feel so guilty if you made a Swatch purchase. After all, each ring costs no more than £40 across the pond. Here in America, however, a Swatch Bijoux ring can total $70. NOT ONLY THAT, but the beautiful blue Love Explosion ring I love so much isn't even available on the Swatch USA online shop! WTF, USA?? JK JK.

The unavailability of that ring didn't stop me from looking up even more unattainable trinkets...including ones from past seasons!

I can picture David Hockney rocking this Pool Party ring.

No, the Secret Code rings are not functional locks.

Zampilo rings are soso cute! And cheaper than those Diorette rings! You...DO remember those Dior cluster rings from SS 2008, right?...

BLIIIIING!!! I can hear hip hop artists rapping from afar for this Feel the Beat ring!
poster luzern Originally uploaded by archigab

Not a fan of the gold boombox? Just shout "HEY, MISTUH DEEJAY!" Available only as a necklace!

HAHAHA BEATLES REFERENCE...I forgot all about this SS 2008 ad! This is one of the most spot-on tributes I've ever seen! Check out the second model to the left...sans shoes, just like barefooted Paul McCartney on the actual Abbey Road album cover! Girl on the far right wears a full white outfit, just like John Lennon! And there's a white Volkswagon bug in the background! Teehee all these details matter to Beatles fans.

Banner image via luxx of tfs, model: Lakshmi Menon (didn't know she modeled back in 2007), photographer: Farrokh Chothia. Images of cluster rings via

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Say bonjour to colette's sale

Bonjour! Bon appetit! S'il vous plaît! Merci beaucoup! That's about all the French I learned during my school trip to France; I regret not going to one place while I was in Paris.

The super chic French fashion boutique (teehee it rhymes) colette will be having a 50% markdown sale in-store and online on SS 2009 womenswear and menswear and select stufferz like books and CDs and prints and whatnots starting Wednesday, July 17. Yes, everything will probably still be expensive but it's 50% less expensive, so that makes things...slightly better. So that means the Marc Jacobs skirt I tried on at Nordstrom is even going to be on sale on! I can't believe I wore something worth 640 Euros...*squeals* But why buy it on when you can just get it at Nordstrom, right? Well, here are some of my picks from the colette website which might go on sale (ridiculously high VAT included in all prices)...

So this is why everyone loved SS 2009 Pugh so much. Love the contrasts. Pugh for 100 Euros?? It's almost like a dream...I think.

omgomgomg If you can afford that Luella dress, BUY IT. This would've made such a cute prom dress but instead I had got something from Charlotte Russe for $20 (then I returned it a few weeks later). This is so beautiful and perfect, I actually saved colette's images of the dress.

Yes, it's THAT Comme cardigan. MObama goes avant-garde. is also holding a 50% off sale, just to tell ya, plus Yoox sells tons of cheaper items...but colette's website is so much cuter, no?

Updatez: Everything I featured in this post is on sale!


Monday, June 15, 2009

Winners of the CFDA Awards

Originally uploaded by LUIS TINOCO - ILLUSTRATOR

Congrats to the Mulleavy sisters for winning such a prestigious title this evening! The other nominees were Narciso Rodriguez and Marc Jacobs, both worthy candidates for the title as well. The above image of the talented duo is another stunning illustration that Luis Tinoco created for Top Magazine's feature on Rodarte.

Rodarte models only looked a little freaky.

Sorry, but if fashion had no sense of normality, I'd go crazy. Thank goodness for Ali Stephens and Narciso Rodriguez.

Every season, I envy those Marc Jacobs models.

The presentation/freak show -- the most glamorous freak show on Earth.

The other winners of the CFDA Awards include Lazaro Hernandez and Jack McCollough (Accessory Designer of the Year), Ralph Lauren (Popular Vote Award), Italo Zucchelli of Calvin Klein and Scott Sternberg of Band of Outsiders (Menswear Designers of the Year), Tim Hamilton (Swarovski Award for Menswear), and Alexander Wang (Swarovski Award for Womenswear).

Images of CFDA presentation: and

Friday, June 12, 2009

A taste of luxury at UTC

Yikes, was my last post really published over a week ago? Finals week was tough but I'm so glad it's over. Except now I'm realizing that moving out of my dorm will not be an easy task. Yesterday, I went on a little shopping trip at La Jolla's UTC (University Towne Center) to peruse the magazine rack and pick up some gifts for my friend who's turning 18 and my dad for Father's Day. I hate the layout of this outdoor mall, but UTC has quite a few nice stores. I very rarely go to any Nordstrom store, as the closest one to my house was probably 20 minutes away by car. But getting to the Nordstrom at UTC is a very quick bus trip from my school!

Why yes, I do try on clothes without the intention of buying anything. Some designer pieces from the spring/summer 2009 season are on clearance but obviously they're all still expensive. Still, I tried a couple of Marc Jacobs pieces from that season, probably one of my favorites from him ever since I started checking out fashion lookbooks. I still remember sitting in front of the computer in my parents' room before the school year started, ogling each look. I'm 5'2" so obviously, I'm not a good candidate for a model, plus I held my camera phone at a weird angle. And I especially look bad pictured next to Simona McIntyre (who, by the way, had a few items on eBay for sale for the first time...sorry for not informing y'all earlier...). Believe me, it was a pretty skirt, even though it makes me look like a grandma!

Here's another Marc Jacobs item but it's not a runway look. It's a gorgeous Indian-style silk cocktail dress that I just had to try on when I saw the sash that hung over the shoulder, hehe yeah that made all the difference. I topped off my shoe-less look with a Brighton long necklace that my aunt bought for me while she was Brighton employee. Again, this look would've looked better if I was taller. I wish I tried on a few more Marc pieces but the cashier nearby was intimidating. She put a couple of items on the rack I was looking through and when I said sorry for getting in her way she didn't say anything, in fact I seemed invisible to her...

I also tried on pairs of Citizens of Humanity and Seven jeans and found that I'm a size 25! I always thought I was a 24...hmm, college food has fattened me up (kidding! sort of). A store staff member kept helping me out, looking for skinny jeans that would fit me. Gosh, I felt so bad. But she was unintentionally pressuring me into buying $170 jeans (or maybe it was intentional)! While I was in the dressing room, I thought, "I'M NOT EVEN GOING TO BUY THIS."

So moral of the story is to avoid high end department store staff members. Just kidding. In the end, I couldn't find anything for my dad and friend. SAD FACE, I suck at buying presents without thinking it over. Nor did I find any great magazine issues under $15 (if you're a mag whore, look into the most recent i-D and Tank issues). I did, however, buy a pretty $6 necklace for myself (ugly model in the Charlotte Russe accessories frontpage is wearing it, the flower necklace). I also bought a $50 20x200 print earlier today after getting a little too excited about their 20% More Ridiculous Sale (enter the code RIDONK at checkout), but I suffer from buyer's remorse and I'm trying to cancel my order. I tried convincing myself that these gifts to myself should be considered rewards for finishing my first college year (wooo such a big deal!) but it didn't work.

Banner image: me. Photo of Simona McIntyre: Marcio Madeira for

Monday, June 1, 2009


Yes, the title of this post is a homage to Conan O'Brien who has to be one of the funniest people alive. If you watched Late Night with Conan O'Brien regularly before Jimmy Fallon became the show's new host, you would know that "IN THE YEAR 2000" was a regular sketch on the show. Huge congrats to the obscenely tall Irish American for becoming the new host for The Tonight Show, my favorite late night talk show! Jay Leno shall be missed...until he returns in September for his new primetime show. And sure, Conan is an odd choice for The Tonight Show (at least that's what I think!) but Conan is SO HILARIOUS. Have you seen his most recent talk/virtual golf match with Tiger Woods?? Well, if you didn't, I did you a favor and included a video of a short clip from their meeting! I LAUGHED SO MUCH I COULDN'T BREATHE.

But anyway, here's a change of pace: I stumbled upon Michael Thompson's portrait of Julianne Moore for the April 2000 issue of Vanity Fair just yesterday and if you are/were an art history student, this portrait is obviously a nod towards Ingres' 1814 oil painting titled La Grande Odalisque. Some differences are noticeable to an art critic's eye; this especially includes the fact that Julianne Moore's spine is not as slinky and deformed as the original odalisque's fully exposed back. Still, it is a wonderful portrait that has a striking resemblance to the centuries-old painting!

This beautiful, vivid photograph (most likely Photoshopped) was supposedly featured at the Vanity Fair Portraits exhibit that I attended at my favorite museum the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. However, I don't recall seeing the photo... Pity! It would've been awesome to see a physical high quality print right in front of my eyes.

And now to watch Conan...AHHH! Excited!