Safra

Archive for December, 2009|Monthly archive page

MY NEW YEAR’S RESOLUTION

In Canadian, designer, Fashion, Recap, Shopping on December 31, 2009 at 7:19 pm

Come ahhnnn! We all know NY’s resolutions are the corniest thing known to man. But you know, we do need them once in a while. I’ve been so hooked on euro-style I completely dismissed what’s right in front of me. So if you’re a fashion maven like me — and I do think I’m a pretty cool one — then make an ode to showin’ some love to the fashion merchants and innovators in your area that need you the most.

For 2010, I promise to:

5) Party on down to those Fashion gatherings that happen around the city. Yeah, I’d much rather curl up in front my european mags, and browse the Internet for designers across the pond (or the border). Sometimes hitting up the locals can be a bit lame because you see the same faces. But it’s worth a shot, you never know who’s going to show up.

4) Attend LG Fashion Week and FAT. Yeah, I’m going to mingle with the other fashion industry leaders and rouse in the talents of homegrown fashion talent. I may have to dig through a lot of junk, but I’m sure I’ll find a gem somewhere in there.

3) Shop at Canadian designer boutiques. I’ll be the first to admit, sometimes Toronto fashion can be a bit “gag inducing,” there I said it. But upon taking chances of just walking into to some stores, and gazing at the visual display long enough to be creative, I did notice some genuinely cool stuff.  

2) Share my love for fashion with Canadian press. Yeah, some of you may have figured, I am writer – a journalist to be specific. So, While I’ve lived across the pond and tried my hardest to break into fashion mags elsewhere, I’ve decided to build a portfolio right here. Elle CanadaFashion Magazine, Flare, they’re all here, and they’re just as good  a platform to build my portfolio as is Marie Claire, or Glamour, or Vogue — well, maybe not Vogue.

1) Utilize my Canadian resources. Why do people always think they need to leave to attain success? Why can’t we just venture out for a short while then come back home once we’ve got our fill? I felt the same way for far too long. As cliché as it sounds, no, the grass was not particularly greener. We’ve got billions of resources here, a federal government, provinces, everything. If I absolutely must leave, then I’d at least like to know I’ve utilized all possible resources here and reached a certain level of success. Then going somewhere else will just be an extension, not a main mission.

One to Watch: Oswald Helgason

In designer, Fashion, Fashion Heat, Good Look on December 31, 2009 at 6:30 pm

Susanne Ostwald and Ingvar Helgason of Ostwald Helgason are strong with their trompe l’oeil concept for their s/s 2010 collection of super short-shorts and mini-dresses. Since their début at Paris Fashion Week in 2008, they’ve created a very niche but devoted following and remained consistent with each release.

I’d say Oswald Helgason is perfect for those who want androgynous feminine. You know, to wear a dress without all the  queasy floral print, and cuts that cascade around the silhouette. I for one am not interested in the look of month, but if I must, I’d prefer my feminine look to have a timeless feel. Luckily, OH has a consistent element, so you don’t have to worry about being dated.

They don’t have a large distro-list, but with every accolade and every request, lets hope that changes.   

 

My Fashion Life

In Good Look, Op Ed., Recap, Trend, Vogue on December 30, 2009 at 9:29 pm

Before

When I lived in the UK for the earlier part of 2009, I wandered London’s congested streets wearing colourful sneakers, stonewash jeans and multiple gold cuban link chains. Upon my return to Toronto, I adapted a punk-influenced look consisting of Trilby hats and leather biker jackets – possibly due to my new-found worldliness. But skirts and heels slowly creeped back into my primary list, mainly because I returned to my conform zone. Before I’d left Toronto, I could throughout the city for miles on end wearing the sexiest heels.

When I landed a job, I was the fashion-forward girl in an office of three; influencing my colleagues to jazz it up a bit more frequently. From beginning to  end, I maintained a solid reputation as the young woman who basked in looking good and would surely cultivate a flourishing fashion career. When my contract ended, I still had desire. But then, I got a job as a part-time Sales Associate for a British retail luxury chain.

At first I thought I’d enjoy this experience. I thought this move would help me to dig deeper into my cravings for fashion. But the uniform, my colleagues, and my managers slowly outed my flame. My need to care was replaced with my need for an out. I started to feel stifled by my surroundings; I preferred the solitude of a computer and words rather than having to “try” for another day on the sales floor. Every day was a was like of war, and the more I wished I could camouflage into the four walls. The nonchalant attitude dipped in my ability to smile, to care. Consequently, your appearance can affect your performance, which can lead to loss of a job. They say fake it till you make it, and it’s true. I remember a time when I had broken up with an old boyfriend. I started to dress a bit more for work; not only did my confidence boost, I got over him quite quickly.

The last time I struggled with a job under the similar circumstances with the store was while living in England. It was for a British company, and I had to wear a uniform. However, I don’t think it was the uniform anymore than it was the people I reported to. A toxic attitude can contain a multitude of things; whether it’s your surroundings, confidence and level happiness at that time.

During

My clairvoyance taped into my conscience; I dreamt about the end of my part-time retail job, something that tends to happen when I know the door will close, and weeks before, my ambitions started to shift to the things I wanted to do. There was no point in trying to salvage it, I knew it was over, it was just a matter of when. But I consider that loss to be a blessing. Because terminating a burdensome working relationship is ending a bad romance. The minute it was over, I regained my confidence. I started to feel my heart mould into a smile, and the part of me that drifted away started to come back.

NOW!

 

For months, I only had this blog as an outlet; it turned that fashion maven loose. Her and I split into two parts; she illuminated, gorgeous and captivating on the blog, while I hid behind her, quiet and patient. But now the year is over, we’ll become one in the same again. The new years is positive; I’ve laid out the groundwork, and I’ve got to enter it with a BANG!

 

One to Watch: Louise Amstrup

In designer, Fashion, Fashion Heat, Good Look, One to Watch on December 18, 2009 at 1:08 am

Louise Amstrup’s a lucky gal. Since debuting her collection at London Fashion Week in 2006, fashion press has been on her jock as a bee is to honey. She’s sucked them in with her ornate collections, and things are about to get better, thanks to a nomination for the Max Factor and Copenhagen Fashion Week New Talent Award.

The Danish fashion designer sharpened her couturier skills under Alexander McQueen, Jonathan Saunders and Sofia Kokosalaki producing a collection inspired by sharp edges, solid grey/black colour palettes and geometric shapes. Her spring/summer 2010 collection incorporated mesh, draping and sci-fi shoulder blades, a trend we’ll be seeing a lot of in the upcoming year.

One to Watch: Hoi Lam Wong

In designer, Fashion, Good Look, One to Watch on December 17, 2009 at 11:50 pm

If you’re going to do floral prints, do it right or forget it. But not only has floral prints taken over the fashion world, the saturation of it has made my stomach churn with nausea.

There was once a time when I wanted nothing more than to be encompassed in an endless field of sun-kissed flowers. Now, the mere thought of it makes me roll my eyes with exasperation. And to think, I once truly loved floral prints; I would have owned a closet full had it not been for its mass-production for a quick buck. But I digress. Alas, my love for floral prints has been salvaged.

London of College of Fashion graduate Hoi Lam Wong has saved it. The award-winning designer’s final collection – as part of Graduate Fashion Week – was based on creating a “modern womenswear collection that drew heavily from male tailoring.” Which could be why I’m in love with floral prints again.

Wong’s collection is – at it’s absolute worse – blatantly sexy. But not in the way you’d expect. What makes it sexy is that it’s conservative. There’s no need to show a lot of skin (though we all know I do love lots of that). But the fact that she can formulate a full collection while having so many elements in mind is something worth paying attention to. There’s sequins and floral amalgamated with timeless pieces, and the overall collection has a distinct androgynous look. All boundaries pushed, men or women could literally wear the collection. Now, how brave men would be to wear it I’m not sure, but there is something in there for everyone – that’s why Hoi Lam Wong’s a winner.

A man’s touch

In Fashion, Fashion Heat, Good Look, I heart, Shopping, Trend on December 17, 2009 at 9:27 pm

(Pharrell Williams on the Town)

If I were a boy…

I’d dress like a man. But even if I’m not, I much prefer the art of men’s clothing. Whether it’s biker boots, sneakers, plaid shirts or rugged leather jackets, men’s fashion seems to center around the luxury of making a hard-wearing concept look über cool. Whereas if done by a woman, it would either be too  “dyke” looking or just plain “durty.”

But I’ve been this way since I was a young’un. As a pre-teen, my statement was meshing my father’s wardrobe with my own. Particularly during the `90s when pants were baggy enough to fit at least three people in them. I loved that time – I really did. As I’ve grown older, I haven’t yet figured out if I have a signature style. But if I do, it’s probably my love for monochromatic colour palettes with a masculine reference. Maybe that’s why Gareth Pugh, Meadham Kirchhoff and Rad Hourani are amongst my favorite designers.

During my frequent musings at H&M and Urban Outfitters, rather than rummaging through the women’s isles, I now dive right over to the men’s section. It’s my own little amusement park, and oh the joys in trying on cardigans alongside the fellas! I don’t particularly like the attention, but maybe the benefits of being a woman is that I get the best of both worlds. Even when I’m dressed super feminine, I always have to garnish the finished look with a tinge of masculinity. When I shop for sneakers, I don’t buy ones made women, oh gosh no! I want the ones made for guys, which in my opinion, is so much more attractive anyway.

I did, and still do, have a knack for femininity. But I can’t stand (or at least no longer can) ultra-girly high-street stores like Costa Blanca and Miss Selfridge. Perhaps because I don’t like the manufactured girly look. You know, the cookie-cutter separates you won’t be the only one sporting when you see every third girl wearing it. It’s actually quite appalling.

Burberry Rabbit Fur Snood (for the neck)

Pretty Green – Black Label Coat

Lyle & Scott Cardigan

Bleach & Destroy Jeans

Maison Martin Margiela High-top leather trainers with Straps

Belstaff leather messenger bag

 

In the Know: Hermione de Paula

In designer, Fashion, In the Know, London, News, RTW on December 15, 2009 at 6:13 pm

I have a genuine love for new designers. But as I’m scrutinizing an image of Hermione de Paula, I can’t tell whether her blank stare is because she knows she’s privileged enough to get a break or because she’s jaded by all the bull-crap she’s gone through.

A cute girl with a cute fashion line and a cute little dog to match. This Central St. Martins graduate has got experience to boot; she’s been at Galliano, Giles, Alexander McQueen and Christian Dior Couture. She’s a favorite amongst the “fash” pack at British Vogue online and she’s the recipient of the Vauxhall Fashion Scout Merit Award for autumn/winter 2010/2011. She’s got her first standalone catwalk show this upcoming London Fashion Week and she’s got a spring/summer 2010 collection at Browns Focus.

All the excitement galore means she’s got the stamina, she’s a hardworking mama-jammer, but I’m not quite fond of her s/s 2010 collection. Let’s not hate; her previous collections are great, but this collection seems to be boggled down by flora print, tie-dyes or something. Don’t get me wrong, she’s got some seriously hot pieces in there, and when she keeps her concepts to a minimum it’s bang on. But maybe I’m just not fond of floral prints. But then again, I beg to differ because I’m a fan of Erdem.

One to Watch: Bryce Aime

In Collection, designer, Fashion, Fashion Heat, France, Good Look, London, News on December 15, 2009 at 5:27 pm

If you join the UK’s exclusive Fashion Business Club, you’re destined to go very far places. Or , on second thought, maybe it’s if you graduate from Central St. Martins. That’s probably because you’ll have the prestige and support to “rule the world” as they say.

In 1998, Bryce Aime was a young unknown who moved to London from France, now he’s a well-respected fashion designer with his own boutique located in London’s it spot – Chelsea’s Walton Street.
Aime who has a passion for architecture, philosophy and art, amalgamated all these elements into a fashion line that launched at London Fashion Week in 2006. The collection, which draws inspiration from sci-fi aesthetics, is an influx of geometric shapes and monochrome color palettes – ideal for making an entrance into the fashion world.

The self-titled boutique was designed with help of Daryll Amos of award-winning interior design boutique Bentheim with a clean minimalist concept and a cosy, intimate feel. Bryce told Drapers there are plans for expansion in the upcoming year. Well, if you’ve got the resources you should definitely capitalize.

Get My Look: Class to Class

In Fashion, Fashion Heat, Good Look, Rouse, Shopping, Trend on December 10, 2009 at 1:36 am

Hobo student wanderer by day:

Chrome Hearts nylon sleeveless vest, 2430 (Euros).

Hysteric Glamour “Nirvana” wool cardigan, 500 (Euros).

RVCA x Erin Wasson “If you Ain’t Cowboy, you ain’t shit” t-shirt, 70 (Euros).

Balmain short cotton pants, 890 (Euros).

Thomas Pink charcoal long wool socks, 15 (GBP).

AllSaints tread boot, 160 (GBP).

Longchamp x Andam “Pilage” bag (Jeremy Scott edition), 190 (Euros).

Tom Scott wool gloves scarf, 455 (Euros).

Cinderella by Night:

Révillon fox fur coat, 8100 (Euros).

Rachel Gilbert Lyla floor-length sequined silk gown, 950 (USD).

Maison Martin Margiela glass court pump, 1530 (euros).

Fendi beaded clutch.

All images by Colette and Net-A-Porter.

In The Know: The Hottest Kicks for 2009 RECAP

In art, Fashion, Good Look, Recap, Shoes, Shopping, sneakers on December 10, 2009 at 12:02 am

As I’ve grown older, my eye for good quality sneakers aka trainers, has become more refined. I admit, I’ve always had good taste in sneakers, but now I can easily spot a really good one when I see it. And believe me – it takes skill, particularly when concepts are slapped together – in the laziest or excessive ways- and then suddenly considered the must-have item of the season.

I don’t like my sneakers to be pretentious, well – maybe just a little. But pretentious meaning they’re equal parts fashion and art. Yes, I truly do believe in wearing art on your feet.

The Top Ten Hottest kicks for 2009/2010 (so far):

Bernhard Willhelm – 204 (Euros). Available at Far Fetch.

I do quite like these all-black leather high-tops. What’s particularly interesting is the piece of lace intertwined with the shoe laces that are strapped through the shoe.

Ann Demeulemeester – 541.44 (CAD). Available at Luisaviaroma.

Sneakers don’t get more euro than this. Beautifully punk black suede sneakers with triple buckle embellishments. If you’re a sneaker lover who’s got class – you wear these.

John Galliano – 475 (USD). Available at Style Drops.

With the patent leather and rivets, I can see these being very popular amongst the hip-hop community. Look at the buckle details, it’s riveting.

Rick Owens – 695 (GBP). Available at Browns Fashion.

Almost a boxing style shoe, what’s wonderful about this shoe is not just the black/white colourway, but the zipper along the side and elongated tongue.

Billionaire Boys Club – 276 (CAD). Available at Ssense.

High-top black canvas sneakers with white city print. How cool is that? I’ve never been one for the whole BBC/Ice Cream shenanigans, but I love the simplicity of this shoe. you may be looking at the shoe thinking “What’s so simple about it?” well, the minimalism with architectural element. This shoe is very art deco.

Paul Smith – 315 (USD). Available at Style Drops.

Leather multicoloured shoe with a heavy psychedelic reference. Enough said.

Raf Simmons – 301 (Euros). Available at Colette.

Neoprene sneakers – the cool irony. Too cool to wear scuba diving, though they don’t look like shoes you’d wear everyday.

Pierre Hardy – 350 (Euros). Available at Colette.

Drawing slight reference from the De Stijl movement, these remind me of works by the infamous Pieter Cornelis Mondrain. There were only 500 pairs available worldwide.

kris van assche – 491 (CAD). Available at Ssense.

These starch white Nappa lambskin sneakers remind me of an astronaut heading off to the moon. These babies sold out quickly, and we’re not sure if we’ll ever see them again.

Swarovski crystalized x Jeremy Scott sneakers – 2500 (Euros). Available at Colette.

Would someone really be that crazy to wear 5000+ dollar crystalized sneakers with wings? You betcha. Jeremy Scott made winged sneakers the rave for 2009 and this is a perfect way to end off the year. A true gem, Swarovski showed the world that they can be just as street as the rest of them. Kudos to Jeremy for constructing such a daring fashion statement.