Wednesday, June 30, 2010

RTW, IMO - Forget Cohesion

I've never done a resort season review and I totally understand why I wouldn't.  What exactly is resort season?  When does this season take place?  Why does it exist?  It's only asking for designers to pull more late-nighters, isn't it?  And why does each resort collection have, like, one girl modeling the whole collection?  For a catalog, I understand how this works, but for a live presentation, isn't this kind of...impossible???  If you've ever attended a cruise show, please enlighten me.

Alber Elbaz's description of resort collections sort of summarizes this odd phenomenon: "Pre-collection isn't about an image or a direction. It's about a woman, a desire, a need."  This might explain why Elbaz's work for Lanvin pre-spring 2011 lacks aesthetic cohesiveness and emphasizes more on the woman's "essentials" for warmer temperatures.  And correct me if I'm wrong but a desire does not always equal need (but need almost always equal desire??).  I guess designers make that desire a need.  They're evil geniuses like that.  Anyway this post is more like a "best of" compilation, which also happens to contain some "hmmm...interesting" bits.  Karl, what would we do without you?

Stella McCartney ALWAYS delivers!  Those of you who read my blog probably know by now that I LOVE florals and lace (as well as Beatle offsprings but I'm not that biased).  I don't think I've ever seen Stella do artsy florals like these.  Kind of reminds me of Chinese silk embroidery (I think her designs aren't vegan?).

Speaking of artsy, LOOK AT AKRIS!  After seeing that trompe l'oeil outfit on The Moment, I immediately searched for Akris' collection on  The clothes truly embody "cruise"'ve got comfort AND prints of tropical settings.

Have I ever said a bad thing about CelinePhoebe Philo makes minimalism look so smart and chic at the same time.  I love the '70s vibe I get from her collections which often merge trendy and classic.  Mini skirts, gold accents, color blocking...and the outfit on the right.  How could I not think of John Lennon's white ensemble in the Abbey Road album cover?

1. I know, what's with my thing for solid colored suits?  This rock and roll red is such a contrast against the piece on the right; both from Givenchy, though.  As much as I love the lingerie-like pieces from this collection, I could never wear something like that mesh dress, at least in an attention-seeking, young and rebellious Kate Moss* sort of fashion.  Maybe with an underdress!

2. Erdem's prints will never get old; they're just what he does best!  You can't really tell in the picture above, but the designer added lace and embroidery to his signature graphic dresses.

3. Romance is in the air as long as you wear these Valentino dresses.  "BUT THEY DON'T REFLECT THE BRAND" yeah yeah we've already heard that.  I don't remember Cristobal Balenciaga doing space-age fashion a la Nicolas Ghesquière's designs.  When life gives you lemons, you make lemonade and that's what Maria Grazia Chiuri and Pier Paolo Piccioli are doing with the creative freedom they have been given.  The results of their work aren't so sweet for long-time Valentino fans but the design duo's modern aesthetic is really refreshing.

4. Wish I could see this Balenciaga dress up close.  Is it glittery or iridescent?  Definitely sun-reflective...and possibly blinding.

5. Remember the Lanvin spring 2009 campaign with that model who stared at herself in the mirror?  I don't blame her since she was wearing the most AMAZING dresses.  Elbaz must be fond of this unabashed narcissism, as we see the comeback of the model(s) and the mirror.

6. Apparently, Karl Lagefeld enjoyed the remake of The Karate Kid (but the kid learned kung fu!!).

7. For the finale of Chanel cruise 2011...we have a gal who is not a skinny model and a guy who's not Baptiste.  Unheard of!  But I’m pleasantly surprised over Sébastien Jondeau’s part as the bad biker boy. You’d think that Karl was going to put Baptiste in that role.  Maybe some of you share my thoughts...I feel that the catwalk serves as Kaiser's platform for his perfect world, where guys like Jondeau (who Karl projects himself onto) get with rocker chicks like Jeorgia May Jagger.

Trends Observed: Artsy florals and prints, lace (again), voluminous silhouettes cinched at the waist, 3/4 sleeves

*Can't find the Kate Moss picture I was looking for but it shows her during her youth, wearing a completely see-through dress.  Bra-less, of course. 

Photos: Coutorture,, The Moment blog

Friday, June 18, 2010

Picture A Better World

by Fabien Baron

Have any of you heard of a magazine titled Above?  It's probably the most eco-conscious thing in fashion (just behind Stella McCartney's line, of course).  The magazine is printed on recycled paper with soy-based inks but what gets people raving about this publication are its featured fashionable items.  All the products you find in the magazine can be integrated into a sustainable lifestyle.  I recently looked through the latest issue (with a very green Elettra Wiedemann on the cover) and found a colorful variety of graphic tees...all 100% cotton, obviously!  The proceeds of these Limited Edition New York (LENY) shirts support The Climate Project and help raise awareness on the effects of global warming.  But that's not all...these eco-friendly shirts were designed by names you recognize.  Celebs (Gwyneth Paltrow, Helena Christensen), designers (Diane von Furstenberg, Waris Ahluwalia), models (Kate Moss, Christy Turlington, Freja Beha), and random others (Richard Bransom) contributed designs that ranged from the simple and clean to the messy and abstract.  Some of these creative minds unfortunately don't do so well when it comes to illustration (scribbles are bountiful), but here are some of my favorite limited edition designs.

by Shinsuke Kawahara

by Ambra Medda

(the one my brother would wear) by Gundam

by Marc Hom
by The Best Shops

(my fave!) by Chico Bialas 


Monday, June 14, 2010

Pop Goes The Picture

Can you believe I'm back?  Now that the Year of Biting-Off-More-Than-I-Can-Chew is over, I can refocus on my long-term goals as well as my immediate to-do' blogging!  Thank you, faithful readers for following my blog, and hello to the newest R2R subscribers!  Now on to discussing the latest trend...a trend that people everywhere embody...three dimensions!  We've already seen plenty of pop-out prints on the runway (have to thank Mary Katrantzou for setting the bar, IMO) but 3D has been popularized in industries that traditionally use 2D imaging.  Could be a result of that one film that I have yet to watch.  Put on those red cyan specs for the best viewing experience...

My aunts recently vacationed in China and brought back a few magazines I asked for.  As strange as some of these Harper's Bazaar China photo editorials are, I'm quite fond of the June 2010 issue's special 3D features, some of which include model Ming Xi.  Also, the magazine came with a free pair of 3D glasses...and a convertible heart clutch totebag thing!  Both are somewhat useful.  Sadly, only a couple of spreads looked convincingly three-dimensional.

You already saw the cover of the special 3D issue of Dazed and Confused up there...who could forget that August 2009 issue?  Okay, I almost did.   At least until I searched "3d fashion" on Flickr.  Terry Tsiolis shot Julia Hafstrom for the "Another Dimension" editorial...with effects that were a bit too subtle for my taste.

Travelogue (2009)

Silhouette Road (2009)

Bones of Fortune (2009)

Bird in Hand (2009)

Claudia Kunin layers her own 3D works with her late father's anaglyph photographs to create some trippy  family moments capable of stimulating wonder and nostalgia at the same time.  Her work doesn't look so great from a computer moniter, so check out the art exhibitions that feature her prints.

A couple of amazing 3D photographs via zadro on Flickr.

Images: Dazed and Confused's Flickr,, Lenscratch Blog