Saturday, October 31, 2009

Guess My Costume



Spooky Saturday greetings!  Many of you are already getting into your costumes and having the candy ready for the neighborhood kids.  Or maybe you've already completed your Halloween festivities!  It's still 4:30PM in Pacific Time so all I've really done for Halloween today was prepare my hair for my costume.  Here are parts of my ensemble for tonight...guess my alter-ego for today!



Stella McCartney x H&M mandarin collar jacket and vintage black dress pants.



My aunt's old (and dirty) ankle boots.  I couldn't find the exact style of boots I wanted, so I had to take the closest option.



Super side part! My hair is really bugging me right now...the things I have to put up with for Halloween.  I'm going to pin the rest of my hair up later.

The winner gets sweet dreams tonight!

Banner image: Fashion Gone Rogue ("Tim Burton's Tricks & Treats" by Tim Walker, Harper's Bazaar October 2009)

Answer: I was a Beatle!  Probably John Lennon circa 1965 because his bangs were long back then.  I was still quite girly-looking so most people thought I was supposed to be a businesswoman...hopefully I can redeem myself next year.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Mulberry Bag Giveaway Starts Tomorrow


If you're already an ideeli member, you probably received an email this morning that informed you of a Mulberry Bag Giveaway with a "Secret Start" time.  Well, the secret's out...the giveaway starts tomorrow, October 27 at 2PM EST.  You'll be entering to win a fairly large Mulberry Mitzy Hobo bag made of genuine soft leather.  I don't know how much the original price of this item was but $$$$$$$ gives you the idea, right?  Click here to be invited to ideeli and for a chance to get this luxurious bag.



And in case you missed out on the last Melissa shoes sale on ideeli, it's coming back!  The sale's is also tomorrow but starts earlier, 12PM EDT.  Prices are slashed up to 67% off and start at a painless $24.  It looks like ideeli is adding some new styles including the oxford-styled 'Joy', the result of Melissa's collaboration with designer Alexandre Herchcovitch.  I was going to buy those shoes to replace my 2-year-old Puma sneaks but after spending way too much on clothing this month, I'll let you have a chance at swiping a pair for yourselves...just click here!

Made in USA?



A few days after dropping $50 at the nearby Gap, my Asian American Studies professor wanted to show us this video, a clip from Behind the Labels.  It's a documentary about indentured workers in Saipan who are paid very little to create many of the garments we wear.  My class wasn't able to watch the whole video in class so I watched it at home myself.  I considered Gap one of my favorite stores, so I felt terrible after seeing footage of the sweatshop's horrible working conditions and listening to the workers' sad stories of loss and false hope.  Just thought this might be relevant to my blog (not to mention that my midterm for this class is in a few days).  To learn more about what you could do to defend human rights, visit witness.org.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

PFW, IMO: The Kinds of Gals We Are



I know. It has been a while since my last post.  Just when I thought all my work was over last Friday, a bunch of new priorities fell from nowhere and hit me in the head.  I'll be busy studying for and taking midterms next week so the bi-weekly posts are still on hold, but not for long!  Looking back at my old posts, I've noticed that I write, and digress, A LOT.  So to finish my Fashion Week, IMO series, here's plenty of eye candy, and minimal text (kind of), from Paris Fashion Week:


Embellished sheer pieces at Valentino sent me back to Stella McCartney Spring 2009.  The honeycomb-like adornments are fascinating and those airy organza ruffles are perfectly feminine.


The Dries Van Noten gal is grown-up but she stands out.  Love the solid darks paired with colorful patterns.  The necklaces are timeless and work for all age groups.  Balenciaga has done space-age outfits in the past but this collection had an urban twist.  Not my favorite from Nicholas Ghesquière, to be honest.  Chloé's style is upsettingly low-key this season, but I can't ignore the leather (?) piping in the jacket and pants.


Intricate sequin embellishments at Miu Miu.  As expected, the John Galliano show was a spectacle.  The oddly opaque bubbles were a bit distracting!  The collection was all about the details, like tags and brooches that hung from this military-inspired jacket.


Nothing complicated going on at Celine.  The craftsmanship is amazing but the unique uses of leather were what stole the show.


Got to love the McCartneys. Stella's collection was simple, yet chic, harking back to the '70s, a decade of female confidence.  Stella even named the collection's low-wedged shoes, after her mother, Linda.  They complement one's natural beauty quite well, doncha think?


Louis Vuitton accessories are always covetable.


I'm usually not a big fan of Karl Lagerfeld's work for Chanel, but this collection was so delicate and feminine.  Perfect for the girly girl in me!  The barn setting was bizarre, but quite romantic!  And Shu Pei Qin looked TOO CUTE with her beaming smile!


Too much coverage of Alexander McQueen's shoes within the blogosphere...let's not forget about those outfits!  McQueen is way ahead of our time with those innovative and futuristic silhouettes, color combinations, and patterns.


WowowowoWOW.  Viktor & Rolf are the masters of couture (wait, this is supposed to be ready-to-wear!).  The chainsawed tulle gowns probably won't see the light of day but keep the wearable pieces in mind.  These seemed to call inspiration from silk Japanese gowns...really really pretty.


Woah.

Images: Eddie Newton, Style.com, Coutorture

Friday, October 16, 2009

Links à la Mode


Ethics and Morality in Fashion City

Edited by Ashe Mischief

This week’s Links á la Mode covers the gambit in regards to the ethical and moral questions surrounding fashion right now…. we have Confessions of a Fashion Editor’s take on fashion blogging & paid posts, and Oranges and Apples reports on a German magazine’s ban of professional models. threadbared talks about Lara Stone, French Vogue, and the controversial use of blackface in recent issue, while Hong Kong Fashion Geek revisits the argument about fashion, price discrimination, and designer knock-offs as Alexander McQueen sues Steve Madden.

As usual, there was a spectacular round-up of links in the forum as well, all worthy of checking out!

Links à la Mode : October 15th

  • Confessions of a Fashion Editor – Morality, the law, and fashion blogging
  • Denimaniac: – Best Denim Shops | Q&A with LA’s Mister Freedom
  • dramatis personae – Costumes from Holidays Past…
  • ferOHHHsh: – Champagne from a shoe?? J’Taime Le Rituel!
  • From Betsy With Love – Bringing some Lynchian Style to the Web!
  • Grit and Glamour – Manscaping 101: Guys should groom, not preen. A little chest hair never hurt (but a shaved chest does).
  • Hong Kong Fashion Geek – What’s the harm in Steve Madden doing an Alexander McQueen knockoff? Is it really sue-worthy?
  • idiosyncratic style: – Idiosyncratic Style: Dare to put your legs center stage this season.
  • Independent Fashion Bloggers – Poll : How do you feel about Sponsored Posts?
  • Large Black Diary: – Austie has a beautiful collection of hair accessories
  • Oranges and Apples: – German magazines bans professional models – an in-depth disussion
  • Prom Mafia – Betsey Johnson does DC.
  • Rags to Reverie: – Five tips for shopping at an American Apparel Flea Market
  • Retro Chick – Lusious Lingerie: Vintage Style from Fred & Ginger
  • sweetarchivia: – Review of Man Shops Globe event held at the San Francisco Anthropologie store
  • The Art of Accessories: – The Art of Accessories shows you how to accessorize your winter wardrobe with tights.
  • THE COVETED – SPUN Around: Integrating organic basics in your wardrobe.
  • The Curvy Fashionista – The Business of Plus Size Fashion: Blogger turned boutique owner Marie Denee discusses the growth of plus size fashion.
  • The Working Wardrobe – Virtual Dress Code: How Professionalism is Working its Way into the Avatar Wardrobe
  • the3st: – The First EVER Philadelphia Fashion Week is this week. Interview with the directors of the week:
  • threadbared: – We react to the recent Lara Stone editorial in French Vogue in “Blackface, and the Violence of Revulsion.”
  • |mode.ulation|: – Mode-ulation is back from hiatus..we bring you a quick glance through Paris fashion week with the cutest trend – the updated toga.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Prepare Yourself - American Apparel Flea Market Tips



My school was selected as a last-minute stop for American Apparel's Flea Market Tour! Thus it isn't featured in the list above (muahah, such secrecy).  It was during the worst possible day of the week but I went to the sale twice, before my eight hours of classes and right after I was done with class.  I came not knowing what to expect.  I wasn't even sure how long the line for the sale was going to be. But now, I'll share what I've learned from my first time experience...here are five things to keep in mind if you're heading to a nearby American Apparel Flea Market.



1. Always always ALWAYS check for holes, stains, and defects
The semi-crappy quality of many of the products at the sale is the reason why everything was priced so cheap.  Also, American Apparel tries to get rid of the clothes that they don't sell through the flea markets, so you'll see a lot of salmon colored as well as highlighter yellow shirts.  I was excited to find these two-toned tights I previously blogged about.  When I got home and realized that I didn't check for defects, I found a small tear in the black side of the tights!  Now I really appreciate my mom's careful eye during our shopping trips...  When I went back to the sale at night, I made sure to check for defects and found a very light stain on the white shirt I wanted to get.  No biggie.  I also saw that one of the chashiers got the exact same tights as I did, but she didn't mention any holes on it!  *Smacks face*

8:13AM - Still setting up

2. The Early Bird Doesn't always catch the worm, just don't be the Extra Late Bird

I had class all day, starting at 9:30AM, and the sale was starting at 9AM.  So I thought I had to be there bright and early.  I woke up at 8AM, didn't eat breakfast (like always), and biked to the location of the sale, which wasn't too far away considering how huge this campus is.  As time went on, the line grew and wrapped around the nearby building.  I was one of the first people allowed to go inside around 9:15AM, a late start.  I had a quiz for my morning class so I had to pick something and go.  Too bad I didn't have any time to shop around later because I heard that more American Apparel stock was brought in during the afternoon.  So it doesn't really matter what time you go to this sale, but make sure you don't go at night, when plenty of the good stuff will be gone.  Also, my campus has terrible lighting fixtures that literally are like dark room safe lights.  Everything was tinged with a yellow hue, and I didn't have a flashlight, just a cellphone LCD.  American Apparel is all about color, so it's best that you see the clothes during the day.



3. Bring CASH
I don't understand why so many people would rather use a credit card than plain old cash.  It's not that hard to bring a fifty dollar bill, you know.  A lot of times, American Apparel Flea Markets only accept cash, but for the college tour, they accepted credit.  More people used cards than cash so unless you want to wait in another long line, bring those bills (if you're at a Cash Only flea market, you'll probably have to wait in another long line, regardless). If you're not sure how much cash you have to bring, here's a nifty price list for you:

If you know what you want, you can estimate how much you'll need at the sale.  The small print at the bottom says you can take an additional 50% off the price of any article with damages that are larger than a quarter (coin).  Note that American Apparel charges tax when the total cost of your purchases is over a certain amount.  In the morning, I bought a $3 pair of tights and I didn't have to pay tax.  In the evening, my purchases totaled over $20, so I had to pay tax.



4. Know your American Apparel sizes
Everyone should know their sizes, especially since American Apparel tees are used by so many graphic design companies to print their own shirts.  It's probably good to know your pants size, too, because you never know what you're going to end up getting at one of these sales.  I got a somewhat messy-looking pair of jeans, a size 26. I'm usually a size 25, but they fit perfectly!  Click here to find the right sizes for you.

5. Want a certain item?  Make a request
That's right, American Apparel Flea Markets take REQUESTS.  A friend of a friend told me he was at the sale and while he was there, someone announced that requests were being taken and he asked the cashier what these requests were for.  You basically write down your name, phone number, and the exact item you want, and they will call you once they find this item.  He said that no one ever called him about the jacket he requested so I'm not sure if this service works, but it's worth a shot.

Another random thing that you might want to know...the workers at the sale were actually very very friendly, even though they all looked like hipsters!  They didn't give any attitude, though a couple of gals organizing some clothes just looked at me when I wanted to ask them a question.  For the most part, the people there were pretty cool, giving you their thoughts on some of the stuff you pick out.  And the guys who check your bags before you leave to make sure you didn't steal anything say "OK, you're straight" when you're good to go.  I just thought was kind of cool, heh.

Here are my purchases...



The jean coloring is sort of strange but I really really needed jeans to wear, now that it's getting chilly around here (I miss LA).  And I finally got a white t-shirt!  That's right, my closet lacks of white t-shirts.  The total price of all these items at full cost would've been over $100 but I bought everything for under $30!  YAY!

Images: Stylehive, moi, Metromix, American Apparel website


A note from the blogger...
Hello everyone, I'm afraid that the crapload of work I have is preventing me from blogging.  My posts may become less frequent, but not to worry, my bi-weekly posts shall return soon!  Thank you all so much for stopping by my blog!

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Links à la Mode


Fashion Roller-coaster

Edited by Jennine

Wow… we’ve got an interesting bunch this week… word from fashion weeks has put us on a roller coaster from the creepy toenails on Shoe Daydreams to the stunning Alexander McQueen on ferOHHHsh, a much needed shopping bill of rights ondramatis personaeand Bay Area Style File wonders why cigarette cases are marketed to teens at Urban Outfitters. We’ve also got some new faces in our round up including one of my favorite French blogs, Morning by Foley whose beautiful photography reminds me how sweet fashion really is.

Links à la Mode : October 8th

Monday, October 5, 2009

Beyond Borders



I have a LOT of unpublished drafts for this blog...some good material that just never gets shows up in public because I was too busy/lazy to finish the posts.  Though I feel that some of my unpublished posts are now irrelevant, I was never able to mention what happened back in September 1, when my insomnia was growing severe.  I found the most stunning fashion editorial ever and here's how I got a hold of it...



As soon as I read V Magazine's tweet, I contacted my friend, an NYU student, via Facebook, Twitter, e-mail, voicemail, and text (free, courtesy of an iPod Touch app), just in case he didn't receive 4/5 of my messages (paranoid, much?).  After laying in bed awake for three hours, my cell phone rang and he was walking the streets of NYC at 8:30AM Eastern time.  I was so surprised that he was up that early and I told him that I hadn't been able to sleep and he replied, "Good, now you can talk to me!"  We didn't talk for almost a week since he set off to New York so I guess it was a good time to catch up.  I guided him through the busy city by looking at Google Maps (he got lost, even though Mercer Street is right next to NYU) and it was so bizarre to talk to him while he pointed out all the signs he saw.  A picture of John Lennon advertising the Rock and Roll Hall of FameFashion's Night Out ads plastered on all the buses.  Hearing about all these sights in the big city was surreal; the only ads I saw for Fashion's Night Out were on the internet and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame is something I've only read of.  So talking to my friend while he walked the streets of New York City was the closest I've ever gotten to being there.



Anyway, it was nice to finally talk to him.  Not so nice getting caught talking on the phone by my mother at 6AM (I told her I was guiding my lost friend, hah). The first thing I did when I receive the magazine in the mail was attempt to peel off Lady Gaga's Marc Jacobs sunglasses but they barely budged.  Has anyone gotten them off?  Er, without damaging the cover?



I was clued in to one of V Magazine's upcoming editorials when I found this photo on Tumblr of Freja and Sasha awkwardly contorting their bodies while a mob of tourists gathered from all around (I would've done the same...starstruck little me).











This is one of the most amazing editorials I've ever seen in its physical form.  The full spread photos (fills two pages) are worthy of being art prints.  That's what I love so much about high quality magazine paper. Hear that, Vogue?

These pictures really remind me of this Beastie Boys music video, with the angles and space-age theme going on:



Ugh, I love this song, even if it gets stuck in my head all the time.

For those of you who can stay awake at odd times of the day, you can watch Alexander McQueen's spring show (mysteriously titled Plato's Atlantis) live here, on Tuesday (today, technically!) 8:15PM, Paris time.  Too bad I was planning to meet up with an adviser today...maybe I'll finally major in something.  If you can't see McQueen's show, try watching Louis Vuitton on Facebook, of all places, at 2:30PM, Paris time.  I don't think I'll be able to stay up that late (never thought I would say that!)...so boohoo for me, but hope the timing over at your side of the globe works out perfectly for you!

Images: Fashion Gone Rogue, Twitter, fuckyeahsasha on Tumblr

Friday, October 2, 2009

MFW, IMO: We Do Care About the Young Folks



So I kind of forgot how much time school work can take up.  I also forgot that being in school gives me that feeling like I am being watched by everyone.  Anyway, before classes get too intense, I'll finish up this review of Milan Fashion Week.  I know Paris Fashion Week started already, but let's reminisce! Spring fashion seems to be getting increasingly youthful but Milan was really where we saw splashes of color, with the exceptions of Bottega Veneta and Jil Sander...and possibly more.  But next season is definitely going to be the antithesis of dreariness.



I LOVE the beachy prints in the Prada collection (the photographs were actually taken in the Japan's man-made Seagaia Ocean Dome)...when it comes to my style, there's really nothing I love more than wearing a beautiful work of art.  The blue and yellow gradient overlay enhances the warm feelings you get when you see photos of the beach...like you're actually there!  Though we all know Prada as a grown-up collection, the label's spring collection includes pieces to please women and young adults.  The first silver ensembles that walked the runway were fit for the office while the shorter cut pieces were more casual and streetworthy...a bit too nice for the beach, though.  Two very different environments in which one collection merges with eloquence.  What else from the Prada show am I loving?  The models' glossy, plump vermillion lips and those plastic sunglasses!



I love it when designers take a theme and really incorporate it into their collection so much that the theme is quite blatant, yet it is blended into the clothes so beautifully.  Tomas Maier was oddly inspired by karate outfits for Bottega Veneta, obvious with those tied fabric belts, white hairbands, and wrapped apparel.



I'm currently a fan of pale color palettes so I love all the clean whiteness in here.  But fear not, color lovers; pops of bright hues appear here and there (especially in the last evening gowns shown).  Knits were prevalent but chiffon also showed up in some feminine pieces.  Oh my gosh, and the clustered jewelry...so beautiful.  What about the coveted Intrecciato bag?  They resemble straw baskets, perfectly matching those woven wedges.



The models who walked in the Jil Sander show looked like they were forced to wear oversized men's suits but got so fed up with the frumpy fabrics that they rolled up their sleeves and cinched the waist.  I would definitely wear those business suit-like ensembles as well as that bizarre...erm...dress.  Sorry, nothing in my vocabulary can sufficiently describe that dress's shedding fabric sort of thingy. The metallic wrapping paper dresses were a bit out of place in this collection but they were interesting.  Lady Gaga and other attention seekers (just kidding!!!) will love them.



Another musical artist who might want a piece of this collection is Björk; for some reason, those sheer dresses remind me of her infamous swan outfit.



1. I'm usually not one for Karl Lagerfeld's designs (*GASP*, I know) but I love Fendi's light and airy pieces.  Sheerness is in there, as expected, but at least the models wore frilly undergarments to cover their you know what. The sex factor is suppressed by all those pastel colors and the pieces' relaxed quality, ready-to-wear, indeed. Not at all vulgar or as I would word it, "slutty".  Even with those lucite platforms, Fendi remains classy.

2. Love Pollini's mock denim, but then again I am partial to graphic apparel.



3. Marni is known for its patterned apparel but all the mashed-up patterns and colors for spring make an awkward collection.  But the ensembles got less and less mixy matchy as the show continued.  My favorites included the sheer floral dresses and graphic sweaters.

4. I usually search for Ferragamo shoes, not clothes.  But wow...this outfit is stunning.  I'm in love with the coat's silhouette.

5. Flat shoes spotted at Prada and Giorgio Armani (and back in New York...Marc Jacobs)!  And not just any type of flat shoe...SANDALS!  Great for those of us who get back aches (along with other aches) when our heels are lifted. Would you believe that I don't own a pair of heels?

Trends Observed: Lucite heels, relaxed silhouettes, flat shoes (thank goodness)

Hope I didn't miss anything, other than Versace (really nice collection but not my type of thing).

In other news, I'm getting sick, which might explain the terrible sentence structures in this post.  Being in San Diego where the H1N1 flu (or what I begrudgingly call "swine flu") is spreading rapidly, I should hope that this is nothing serious...got to rest up.


Images: Stylesightings.com (picture of Iekeliene was saturated by me...those photos really need to be more saturated), Style.com, Coutorture