Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Two Penny Post: The Longchamp Tote

'My two cents' is an American idiomatic expression, taken from the original British idiom expression: to put in "my two pennies worth". It used to preface the stating of one’s opinion suggesting its value is only two cents, a very small amount — the user of the phrase hopes to lessen the impact of a possibly contentious statement, showing politeness and humility.

There is also some belief that the idiom may have its origins in the early cost of postage in Britain, the "two penny post", where two pennies was the normal charge of sending a letter containing one's words and thoughts or feelings to someone.

This is my two penny's worth (i.e. me, ranting) on the La Pliage Longchamp tote

I believe what you put on in the morning provides an opportunity to make a unique statement about who you are. And if the clothes make the initial statement, it’s accessories that add a total flare. I'm not going to discuss whether I think the Longchamp tote is fashionable or not; it’s nowhere near being an equivalent of Uggs. But first, look at it. It’s leather and vinyl.

But this is what bothers me. If you take a group of ten women, at least four of them have the Longchamp tote. Thus, the already-bland bag becomes even more ordinary and everyday because we see it everywhere. Our eyes are flooded with the image of the Longchamp Pliage. And if that weren’t boring enough, every one of you has decided to buy it in a shade of blue!

Okay! so I admit, the Longchamp trend was refreshing when it first exploded onto the scene. It was simple and understated–and best of all, for a “trendy” bag, the price is still pretty fair, and I had lusted after one. But if you really have to give into that urge, at least check out some of the funkier ones Longchamp has to offer, other than blue, black or khaki. I think the pliage in billberry (deep purple), or mustard yellow are quite tres chic, for an everyday look.

And check this out! Longchamp’s new limited edition donut bag byJeremy Scott, Charles Anastase and Bless. Great for travelling and a little more architecturally interesting than the l'original Pliage.

Monday, March 29, 2010

Patterned / Printed Pants: 2010 Trend Prediction

For years, shoulder pads were fashion suicide. But they are back, first on the catwalks of London Fashion Week, back in the shops, and back in our wardrobes. How did this happen?
But what was unimaginable just a few years ago has now happened - shoulder pads are back in the shops and back in our wardrobes, for the third time round. (It was in vogue during the 1930's, then it was a power dressing essential in the 1980's)
So how did we find ourselves handing over our hard-earned money for what was considered a fashion faux pas for so long? (Last month, I bought a fierce $190? pair of embellished shoulder pads with gold fringing, similar to the ones in the picture below)
Natalie Portman, Keko Hainswheeler Shoulders Pads

Discussed in my earlier posts, I mentioned the cycle of trends and theories. Andrew Groves, director for fashion at the University of Westminster says, "We now live in a fast-paced consumer society. Pictures of what's on the catwalks of London Fashion Week today will be on the internet today. Everything is absorbed quicker and we want it quicker. Looks hit the High Street much faster."

And the reason a trend goes from hot to not? What kills it off is boredom? A trend starts off on a few and eventually goes mainstream, by which time the leaders - be they designers, models or trendsetters - have moved on. Eventually everyone else does too. When the market is totally saturated with a look, showing up in the high-street and shop windows, a trend loses its appeal. Then it goes through stages of being ridiculed and worn ironically until it is largely forgotten. Only when it drops off the fashion radar - for both good and bad reasons - can it be rediscovered, in this instance, the shoulder pads!

As an aspiring stylist, I need to capture the trend when it is just emerging in phase one - when you see that great hat/dress/shoe on the runway, red carpet or music video, and phase two - where the trend is highly sought after and the look is often available in high-priced designer collections, before the trend hits phase three - when a look makes it to the mass market, does it become affordable for most consumers.

So here is a trend I discovered in Phase One for you fashion-forwarders: 
Patterned / printed pants

Givenchy S/S 2010 
Balenciaga S/S 2010
Karen Walker S/S 2010
Dries Van Noten S/S 2010
Topshop Unique S/S 2010

Stripes, florals, graphic prints and abstract shapes. Bright and bold, or subtle and sophisticated. Almost anything goes when it comes to trouser prints in 2010.
The style expected to be seen on the streets? At least more immediately, is the skinny, and the toned-down take on the harem pant, relaxed at the hips and tapered in to the ankles.
Street Style - Sasha Pivovarova 
The patterned pants I'm on the lookout for? The skinny black and white checked pair like the one in this Aldo ad campaign. Or a zebra print!

Saturday, March 27, 2010

What's White Now: Harpers Bazaar US April 2010

US Harpers Bazaar hits the mark with showing many of the top 2010  spring/summer trends: boy shorts (hot pants), lace, dandy, sheer (see-through) clothing, bib necklaces, and heavily-embellished clothing.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Micro Trend Report: Red Lips Clutch

Classic red lips are never out. Red lips clutches, however...?

(Spotted in the famous hands of Sarah Jessica Parker, Agyness Deyn, Katy Perry, Jessica Stam, Heidi Klum, Katherine Jenkins, and Sophie Ellis-Bexter.)
Jessica Stam in Aldo S/S 2010
Heidi Klum in Vogue Germany
Street style photographed by Scott Schuman
Timmy Woods Red Lips Bag, $375
Lulu Guinness Red Lips Clutch, $335

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

What's in my Bag?

Vogue Australia April 2010
Canon Digital Camera
Kikki K 2010 Diary
iPhone 36GB
Lucas Papaw Ointment (marvellous, cheap, multi-tasks, smells delicious too)
Pride and Prejudice (my favourite Jane Austen)
Kinder Bueno (there's a promotion on at the moment: buy 2 and see a movie at Hoyts for $5)
Compact powder, nude lipstick, liquid eyeliner etc (I adore dark eyes and nude lips)

Monday, March 22, 2010

Dandy Diane

Very classically Karl.
Diane Kruger by Karl Lagerfeld: Vogue Germany March 2010
Diane Kruger by Karl Lagerfeld: Vogue Germany March 2010
Diane Kruger by Karl Lagerfeld: Vogue Germany March 2010

Diane Kruger by Karl Lagerfeld: Vogue Germany March 2010

I personally love the female dandy trend! It's strange, because they say most people dress their personality. True in most cases, nonetheless for me I think I wear a bit of my alter ego.

I'm a princess at heart, but I just don't like dressing too delicately girly. I always subconsciously as a finishing touch, 'toughen' up my outfit with something chunky, something studded, something leather, or something black? or I do the boy-meets-girl thing, by masculinising an otherwise girly/cutesy look with a boyfriend blazer, boyfriend shirt, waist coat, fedora, or oxford pumps.

Anyone else also like that?
Or, in me lives a 23 year old male.

Basic Instinct: Vogue UK April 2010

I have started my own collection of Vogue magazines to have a fabulous source of inspiration in years to come when the trends have come back in a new cycle. The US, UK, Paris and Italia editions of Vogue are the best for this kind of collection as their fashion spreads are sadly a lot more inventive than our Australian edition. I don’t know why, perhaps budget?
Kate Moss: Vogue UK April 2010
Kate Moss: Vogue UK April 2010
Kate Moss: Vogue UK April 2010
Kate Moss: Vogue UK April 2010
Kate Moss: Vogue UK April 2010
My scanner is overheating from scanning my Vogues to death! 

Contesse Natasha: Vogue Paris April 2010

I've been noticing a running theme through so many recent fashion pictorials - model in the hard conditions of the dessert looking glamourous.
Natasha Poly desert
Natasha Poly: Vogue Paris April 2010
Natasha Poly: Vogue Paris April 2010
Natasha Poly: Vogue Paris April 2010
Natasha Poly: Vogue Paris April 2010
Natasha Poly: Vogue Paris April 2010
Natasha Poly: Vogue Paris April 2010

Make Fashion Your Own

I think we are very lucky to be apart of an industry that is so widely loved and discussed on the internet. I am using this available information to my advantage by developing early in my career the habit of constantly using the internet as a source of inspiration. The internet is also a wonderful place to meet like-minded people if you choose to write your opinions in a forum.
Studying fashion, I was constantly, continually, always told the importance of keeping track of fashion trends, however I was also told wisely, there is one big BUT which is… take these trends with a grain of salt. That’s right, don’t take them too seriously! 
Being a stylist means you being a style maker. People will not love you and your work if you don’t have your own opinions, and that might mean for you to not follow each and every trend that emerges on the runway. Make fashion your own.

The surprising thing in saying this is that I will most likely find myself actually liking the trends that develop each season. For some reason it’s just the way things go. But for those trends that don’t take your fancy, don’t slavishly follow them because you think it’s the right thing to do. It’s not. What your personal sense of style dictates is the only trend you should ever follow. 
I was looking on the internet yesterday (a constant source of inspiration!) and came across this HSBC advertisement that I thought made a fantastic point in regards to treating trends as the gospel. Take a look-
Do you see...?
Not everyone is the same, we are all individuals. People see beauty, fun, happiness or hell in totally different things. Fashion included. Remember, in life and in trends: beauty is in the eye of the beholder. 
How sad would it be if we all mindlessly followed trends without actually thinking about what suits us personally? As a stylist I encourage you to take a look at what fashion has to offer you each season and make your own recipe. Remember that not everything applies to everyone, and that virtually every trend has its anti-trend!

Fashion Trend Forecast Theories

As a stylist, and you fashionistas, need to move past simply knowing about the mainstream trends to being able to identify them in their early stages.

The 20 Year Trend Cycle

A key characteristics of popular trends is that they occur in regular 20 year cycles. The reason? Twenty years is about the span of time between your formative years (typically between 8 and early teens), and when life starts to fill up with mortgages, bills, kids, jobs, and other non-carefree adult activities. According to Robert Thompson, professor of Media and Culture at Syracuse University, it is at this point that nostalgia sets in. For example, someone who came of age in the 1970's would enter 1990's and start to look back. However there is an additional layer of nostalgia: during the 70's, those adults would also have been pining for their  "the good old days" of the 1950's, like 'Lavern & Shirley', and 'Grease'. You could say, there is nostalgia for nostalgia. 
"When an 8 year old now looks back at the '00s in 20 years, he'll not only remember popular shows like 'Lost' and '24', but he'll also be nostalgic for all the shows on VH1," Thompson recently explained to the Columbia News Service about this endless loop of recycling.

The Milestone Year Trends
A 5th anniversary, a 10year reunion, a 50th birthday - there's just something about a milestone year that people relate to. Because the fashion industry is only around 100 years old, at this point there are only 10 main periods to consider: the 1910's, 20's, 30's 40's, 50's, 60's, 70's, 80's, 90's, 00's, and 2010's.

I am 23, going on 13

This has almost nothing to do with the Sound of Music. Let me just say that apparently I’m 30 going on 13. I don’t know what happened bu...