Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Love Stella McCartney For Adidas

People tend to have a love or hate relationship with exercise - I'm one of those folk that need it for my sanity and stress, not to mention health and fitness. The buzz I get from a good workout is one of the most satisfying highs. Although I'm the first to admit it can be tough to drag yourself out of bed to hit the pavement or the treadmill, but one thing that does help is some good workout gear. It makes you feel better about yourself and gives you motivation to be athletic and not just look it. If you look daggy, you feel daggy and probably wont really be bothered making an effort at the gym. 

Since I'm not just a gym-bunny but also a fashion fiend, I'm a sucker for Stella McCartney's collections for Adidas. So I was very pleased today to get to go into Showroom 22 to see all of the new Adidas range (including Stella McCartney, Jeremy Scott). The new Stella range is seriously inspiring - I'm dying to put some of it on and get my flash, newly-clad body to the gym. Feminine details like flora, subtle ruffles and surprisingly athletic lace are combined with sexy mesh inserts and functional details. And the majority of pieces are super wearable (leggings, racer backs and the hot little run-shorts that I've always loved from McCartney) and those that weren't would be killer if the made an appearance in a night out outfit.

We were lucky in that there was a fit model there all day, so you could get her to try on whatever you wanted! And of course she looked much better in it than any of us.

The dress on the left - sculpted, sexy yet totally functional has me even more determined to get back into tennis. Likewise the perfectly preppy striped polo. The run-shorts its paired with are something I've lusted after for about three years, so it's probably nearly time I invested.
The floral leggings are quite probably my favorite piece - sexy mesh panels prevent them looking nanna, instead they are sweetly retro yet athletically functional. I lived in my Adidas running leggings last winter, and this will be no different.

And we all know I love a good backpack... So the minute I saw this Stella one I may have died a little bit.

And of course I need a new gym bag for all the stuff on my wishlist. These would do just fine.

Looks like I'm going to continue being poor - but at least with gym clothes I know that they will get thrashed. Cost per wear is amazing really, if you workout 4-6 times a week.

Puritans

I've always had a bit of an obsession with puritans - their austerity and dowdy primness is right up there on my inspirations list with the likes of cults, the Amish and prairie girls (all of which share similar elements). I'm not quite sure what it is, whether its the romanticism of the pious religious fervor, the long skirts, buttoned collars and the rough-hewn fabrics. Or  the oldworld earthiness and simplicity of life. Whatever it is, I find myself frequently going back
Vogue Italia Feburary 2008 "Living Green"


Pop Fall-Winter 08 "Nun Head" From MC

Russh July 09 "The Heart Is A Lonely Hunter"


Sources: my scans, Fashion Gone Rogue, The Fashion Spot, Google Images.

Monday, March 29, 2010

29/3/10: Street Style

Love the uniform of a navy blazer, trousers/jeans, button up shirt and easy going flats. Simple, chic, idiot proof. Just enough schoolboy charm without looking too contrived.
Ps. Those patch pockets!




Source: Jak & Jil, Turned Out

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Hutton

Lauren Hutton has been a long time muse of mine - something my Mum passed down I think. She was a stunning example of classic American beauty in her day, and is still absolutely killing it in her late 60s. One of the original gap toothed, fresh-faced beauties, I love her best when she's looking stunning in menswear.
Source: Google Images

Obsessed: Celine Spring Wedges

Every now and then there are things that you just can't get out of your mind. For whatever reason, the capture perfectly an aesthetic you love. Not to mention being desirable, inspirational and (usually) unobtainable. For me, since the Spring shows, that has been the Celine shoes for Spring 10 from Phoebe Philo. Specifically the wedge clog (although the platform sandal is a close runner up). The buttery leather is the sort you can imagine would only improve with age and wear - soaking up body oils and environmental wear until it becomes a rich toffee hue. The natural, pale wooden wedge has a laid back, earthy look - clean without being pristine. And I love the studs - both at the sides of the wedge and on the inner sole. I would literally give my first born for these - they just capture everything I love right now; classics, contemporary minimalism, earthy qualities, endearingly clomfy shoes, clogs and the comfort of wedges.


The black, whilst beautiful still have nothing on the tan for me (although they would look killer with opaque stockings)

And an honorable mention does go to the sleek minimalism of the bags - the polar antithesis of obnoxious it bags.
Source: Celine

28/3/10: Street Style

A close runner up to my current obsession with camel is the colour brown - ideally in soft, mousy hues or chocolatey corduroy. And ideal colour to pair with the blues, greys and blacks that make up the majority of my wardrobe.
I've been living in long skirts all summer, and am planning to as the weather chills too. They look so refreshing paired with blazers and jerseys and scarves - juxtaposing the floaty femininity with more serious, mature basics. I'm also loving cuffed denim in the perfect shades of blue. Still searching for just the right pair.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Minimalism In Motion

The breath of fresh air that is Phoebe Philo's recent collections for Celine has heralded a sea change in the way women are wanting to dress. Cue contemporary minimalism, chic classics, refinement and a touch menswear.
Likewise, the Reed Krakoff collection - except with a slouchy, grungy quality that evokes both chic understatement and borrowed clothes. This whole new interpretation of simplicity is just so inspiring - clean, fuss free, unassuming yet the quality of the garments and accessories just radiate.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

FRONT ROW DIARY: Back To Uni Streetstyle


After the infinitely long summer university holidays, the students are back and truly into the swing of things.
The beginning of the new tertiary year always sees a tonne of exciting new fashion around campus. Everyone's itching to wear both their summer purchases and the new winter pieces that are filtering into stores.
Most students also still have the energy and clear thinking to put together some exciting looks - something that the sleep deprivation and stress of later months diminishes somewhat. Older students are feeling comfortable in their own personal style and the new first year's are relishing the freedom of not having a uniform anymore. In all, everyone is making a bit of an effort and enjoying themselves...
Photography by Brigette Baker

Sale Time

Wow talk about a busy week!! The last week of uni before our "holiday" break - aka live at uni and become attached to your sewing machine for three weeks. But I love it. I also love workroom sales. There are two goodies on in the next few days - definitely worth the trip to the ATM to get all the cash you have left out. Superette is having their workroom sale tomorrow (I'm going to try and make it after our morning class) and Ruby are having a design room clear out on saturday. The only problem is, which to choose? Or just do both.

Image Sources: Superette & Ruby

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Lover Interview

The Vine has an interesting interview with Susien Chong and Nic Briand of our much beloved Lover - they explore the inspirations behind their beautiful winter collection "The Harvest" - Days Of Heaven (I knew that from the INSTANT I watched the short film), Neil Young and The Band. I always love reading interviews with Chong and Briand - their interests and influences are all similar to my own, and I've adored the lover aesthetic and style since I first discovered them a few years ago.
The term ‘cult following’ gets thrown around a lot, but it's justified for Lover - are you ever surprised by the fervour of your fans?
“We are constantly surprised, and never take it for granted… it’s a very gratifying experience when you hear the stories about the lengths people will go to to have a piece of Lover. And I believe it’s a testament to the way we built the label. We have stuck to our ideals from day one, we haven’t swayed from trend to trend. Each collection is another chapter in the story. And we have always maintained that Lover is about the people who wear it, who make it a part of their lives.”
Who have you been happiest to see wearing your clothing?
“It blew our minds when we were standing in the audience and Joanna Newsom walked out on stage wearing a Lover dress"
The Harvest is quite an austere collection - why do you think fashion is moving to more classic, minimal pieces?
“Fashion in general feels so cluttered and disposable right now, everyone is a designer, everyone is putting out a collaboration, things are being embellished and taken to the extreme, live streaming shows, blogging etc. We just felt like simplifying, returning to basics, but retaining the essence of Lover. We had no idea that fashion would begin to move in that direction.”

What music did you listen to while creating this collection?
“We listened to very stripped back organic stuff like Karen Dalton, The Band and Neil Young.”

What else was The Harvest influenced by?
“Once we started talking about stripping things back, we discussed that there is no where more natural and pure than being out in the country, which led us to the farm, which led us to pull out Terrence Mallicks’ masterpiece Days Of Heaven. From the colours to the characters it was just so inspiring to watch on so many levels. It wasn’t naïve, the characters weren’t weak, they had a dark side, the clothing was beautiful but it had a purpose. The tension between the workers and the land owners and the difference in their possessions and surroundings was something we wanted to work into the collection.

Have you been investigating quilting? Some of the jackets have that kind of sensibility.
“We have. Like everything we do, we play around with something for a couple of seasons, until we either feel like we have gotten it to a point where we are happy, or we’ve explored all possibilities. The quilting is part of that process, its always nice to have the contrast of something being quite homespun, against something quite structured, which is what we wanted to achieve with the quilted jackets this season.”
The collections seem to include more tailored pieces as time goes by - is that due to your own learning about tailoring and form increasing and improving, about Lover clients growing up, or something else entirely?
“You always hope your skills will evolve and so do the areas you want to explore. We have always injected a sense of masculine/feminine into the collections, and our tailoring has been a part of that even from the first collection we sent down the runway. As we’ve spent time perfecting the tailoring and getting it to a level we were happy with, the tailored pieces have started to become just as covetable.”
Finally, what's your favourite piece from the collection?
“The overcoats - in a time when so much emphasis is on visual stimulation the feel of being wrapped in soft folds of cashmere and wool in winter are a simple and comforting sensation.”

Image Sources: Lover
Interview Source: The Vine

Breaking News! TOPSHOP IN NEW ZEALAND

I actually never thought this would happen. Living in such a little country like New Zealand, although it has so many amazing local designers, still feels cut off from much of what's going on in the fashion industry overseas. So we pour over magazines and websites and lust over online shopping sites - one of which is Topshop, who thankfully started shipping to New Zealand last year and now have taken it one AMAZING step further...

It will be coming the the retail haven that is The Department Store in April (yes!! That soon!!) as its own retail section and will have a prime spot on the top floor with Stephen Marr so be prepared to race up that spiral staircase. Unbelievably, we will be getting a selection of the best of Topshop's 300 new styles that arrive in their stores weekly. Topshop Unique, designer collaborations with the likes of Christopher Kane Emma Cook and not to mention Kate Moss's line will not only be coming to little old NZ but will be hitting the shop floor at the same time as the rest of the world.

No longer do we need to lust after all the amazing pieces females  are wearing around the world. Topshop being in New Zealand will mean that trends will be accessible quickly - we wont have to wait half a year for local retailers to pick up on something. I always have a good deal of envy for the on trend pieces that are so accessible overseas but that we have had to approximate and diy - until now that is. The shipping to NZ was great, but being able to try things on (especially shoes, pants etc) is SO much better and enhances sales tenfold. The beauty of Topshop is that is slips in seamlessly into your wardrobe with both designer pieces, cheap basics and vintage - it bridges the gap between mid-level and designer pieces by providing on trend pieces uber-quickly.

The lovely Karen Walker (and one of the masterminds behind this big news) was kind enough to answer a few questions from me about all of this:


Do you think it will make local consumers even more aware of international trends - now that they will be at our fingertips with Topshop - and will people push their boundaries more when it comes to dressing?
NEW ZEALANDERS ARE ALREADY REALLY AWARE OF WHAT’S GOING ON. FASHION IS SUCH A GLOBAL LANGUAGE, IT’S JUST YOU CAN’T ALWAYS ACTUALLY BUY IT HERE!  THE ARRIVAL OF TOPSHOP MARKS A CERTAIN LEVEL OF MATURITY IN THE NEW ZEALAND FASHION MARKET.

How do you think the arrival of such an influential brand like Topshop in New Zealand will impact the way our fashion industry and market are seen on an international scale?  
IT PROBABLY SAYS THAT NEW ZEALANDERS ARE SAVVY, FASHION CONSCIOUS PEOPLE AND IT’S GREAT TO HAVE BRANDS LIKE TOPSHOP AND MONOCLE SAY WE’RE DOING THINGS HERE THAT ARE TO A WORLD CLASS STANDARD.

What points of difference does Topshop bring to the local fashion scene?
IT’S THE ONLY BRAND THAT GIVES A COMPREHENSIVE BUTTONING DOWN OF WHAT FASHION IS TODAY. IT GIVES PEOPLE WHAT’S RIGHT NOW. NOT THREE MONTHS AGO.

Do you think the strength of Topshop, and the fact that it will be in such a strong retail space like The Department Store with the likes of Karen Walker and Black Box will encourage local designers and stores to lift their game even further?
I THINK IT WILL DEFINITELY CHALLENGE A LOT OF PEOPLE WHO’VE BEEN  USING  TOPSHOP AS SAMPLE SUPPLIERS AND IT WILL CHALLENGE DESIGNERS TO LIFT THEIR GAME EVEN FURTHER ALSO. TOPSHOP’S UNIQUE IN THAT IT’S A HIGH STREET STORE THAT’S ALSO SUCCESSFULLY  GONE UP AGAINST THE DESIGNER MARKET  AUTHORITIES  SO PEOPLE WORKING AT BOTH ENDS HAVE HAD TO LIFT THEIR GAMES INTERNATIONALLY.  FOR YEARS NOW THEY’VE BEEN SHOWING AT LONDON FASHION WEEK TO GREAT REVIEWS WITH THE UNIQUE LINE WHICH WE’RE THRILLED TO BE STOCKING FROM SEPTEMBER.

Oh and will there be Top Man coming too?
NOT RIGHT AWAY BUT LATER IN THE YEAR,  YES


One of the first things this news made me think was that local designers will have to lift their game now that overseas trends will becoming here so quickly - really needing to really focus on originality and design. Karen also mentioned a good point above in that Topshop has really made both designers and high street stores really lift their game as the disparity between the two (at least trend wise) shrinks.

Are you as excited as I am by this? And does anyone else wonder, as I am, if it will lead to a slight shift in the local fashion industry?
What impact do you think this will have on the local fashion scene, retailers and designers
Do you think this will influence your wardrobe?
What topshop line are you most looking forward to?

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Miu Miu Miu

We all love Spring 10 Miu Miu - and I seem to post something on it every two days (apologies to all the readers who are very much over it). But this I just had too - adorable fashion illustration that could easily grace both Vogue or an exercise book.

Update: The illustration is from http://blog.krisatomic.com/
Source: Le Fashion

Karen Walker's "Salzburg, USA" Southern Hemisphere Summer 10/11

When we were at The Department Store on friday night, someone (possibly Scarlet?) mentioned that the Southern Hemisphere collection of "Salzburg, USA" was up on the Karen Walker website. I jumped online the next available opportunity to have a bit of a peruse. The SH versions of Walker's collections are always interesting to look at - to see how the concept has been transferred to the opposite season it was originally shown for - in this case the summer version of a winter collection. To see what pieces are coming down under (not the shearling, navy velvet, or possibly this print either - oh and I may cry if we don't get these trousers) and of course, to start writing my Wish List. The SH collection is understandably lighter the the range that showed in New York - with the focus on the dresses, knee length skirts and a very covetable pair of tailored short-shorts.

MAINLINE
I love the colour combination of the rust-red and pale pink in that knitwear - it's one of those unexpected yet surprisingly appealing combinations - and its a refreshing look for a classic striped jumper. The tan I love, and I've been hunting for the perfect tan pieces for a while now - those shorts would be a very good investment I think, uni appropriate too.
I always love Karen's trousers - simple, chic and quirky. I wear my grey pair from "She's Cracked" all the time, and really need another pair or two.
I'm glad the tiered ruffle shape that featured so successfully in "The Village" collection in navy with white is making a return appearance in Salzburg - this time more delicate, less nautical. Although I am very very tempted to treat myself to one of the current season's navy dresses.

RUNAWAY
As per always, the Runaway line is full of quirky, oversized tees and jumpers ideal for pairing with your more expensive piece like the trousers and wearing to uni (me) or getting as treats for younger siblings (as we do for me spoilt little sister). The Salburg tees are all plays on iconic Americana logo tees - the camp shirts, the college jumpers.
I also like the playfulness of the contrast-collared shirts.

Source: Karen Walker

Monday, March 22, 2010

Vogue Paris April 2010 Cover

More on a nostalgia vein, I love how (unlike the American Vogue team) the French Voguettes are as obsessed with iconic Americana as I am - denim, country belles, cowboys, farmhands and more are all frequent features and twisted into high fashion dripping with sex appeal. The cover of the April issue promises another irresistable take on the earthy nostalgia of the USA. Quintessential Vogue Paris girl Natasha Poly looks to appealing for words in cowboy mode (that shirt!!! Perfect) with a good supporting act from a surprisingly adorable camel.
Vogue Paris April 2010 Cover Natasha Poly by Inez & Vinoodh

Sweet Nostalgia

I still love the sweet, childlike dresses from the Christopher Kane and Miu Miu spring collections (and all their evocativeness of Nabokov's nymphettes). They are even better when bathed in the sepia tinted light of nostalgia.
Vision Of Delight
Vogue China April 2010 "Vision of Delight" Tao Okamoto by Camilla Akrans

Overnight
Muse Spring 2010 "Overnight" Bianca Balti by Fabio Raineri

Question Me

Don't forget, if you have any questions about anything at all you can Formspring me. Ask away!

Sunday, March 21, 2010

The Holiday Lolita

More ubiquitous Spring Miu Miu posting, because I can. And because I still cant get over the swallows, cats and exaggerated collars.
Vogue Nippon April 10 "The Holiday Lolita" Marloes Horst by Blaise Reutersward

The Department Store: Winter 10 Show

Wow it has been a mad mad mad weekend. Have not even caught my breath or had dinner! Working both days is bad for my energy (although good, of course, for my bank balance) and of top of that I've actually had to take myself out of the house and be social/human - not complaining however, as it was very very worth it. Lastnight was I Love Fashion And Lazers at Cassette 9. I discovered possibly the best drink - vodka with half orange Vitamin Water and half soda. Delish.

Friday night was The Department Store's show for Autumn/Winter 10 - with the powers that are Karen Walker, Black Box and Stephen Marr combined to put on a great show of their winter collections.




KAREN WALKER
I always love getting the chance to see the Karen Walker collections on the runway - since my obsessions with each collection starts six months before when they show in New York, then I obsess, and then I nag poor Scarlet. "The Village" is one of my favorite collections for a long time, and with many other people considering how much of the crowd was kitted out in the collection (I wore my beloved seagull shirt and socks).









BLACK BOX
The appalachian goodness that is the Stolen Girlfriends Club "Welcome To Nowhere" collection was combined with Ksubi denim, Beau Coops, Tv and more.




Next time your at The Department Store, grab their latest newsletter too. Once mines read it will be cut to pieces and put in my scrapbook, not gonna lie.








You can also check out all the party photos from the night on Front Row Diary!