Archive for the ‘style’ Category

Musing: 500byGucci

In culture, designer, style on July 5, 2011 at 5:03 pm


Gucci’s Frida Giannini is honing her automotive design skills. The creative director has helped to thrust the fashion house into a whole new hemisphere by teaming with Fiat’s Centro Stile to release the 500byGucci: a limited-edition mini coop.

The collaboration was presented during opening day of Milan Fashion Week as well as at the Geneva International Auto Show that took place in March. The editions come in black and white, and are embellished with Gucci’s signature red and green stripes. What’s even better is that the car will be available exclusively online.

I once owned a Gucci bag, many years ago. And though my taste has become more refined, I notice that through Frida’s direction, is becoming a lot more sophisticated, as demonstrated here. This collaboration is to celebrate both the 150th anniversary of the unification of Italy and Gucci’s 90th anniversary – both being monumental and emblematic to Italy’s identity.

Retailing at £14,565 OTR for the 1.2 litre while the award-winning 0.9 litre TwinAir, is priced at £15,765 OTR this is certainly an investment. But if you’re passionate about luxury, and if you’re always wanted to own Gucci at in its finest moment, this is a good investment.

I have always considered Gucci to be one of the more innovative brands when it comes to implementation and creation. I can certainly see it being something rather personal. I wouldn’t drive this car during a night on the town. Quite the contrary. More like, possibly, driving the countryside, on the way to the beach. But then again, perhaps that how personal brands like this have become to me. You don’t need to show it off to the world, you need revel in the luxury.  


Fiat 500 by Gucci
Italian car

Sponsored Post

Viral video by ebuzzing

Some Evening Sexy: Lanvin Chiffon Wool Sneakers

In culture, style, Trend, Trend Report on June 14, 2011 at 7:51 pm

Lanvin Chiffon Wool Sneakers via Highnobiety

Well, those and this super sweet Navajo camo weekender by Trussardi 1911. I know. There was a time when I updated this blog three times a day. Sometimes more. But I’m a bit busy as of late – especially since moving back to the ‘city of smoke’. And I’ve taken a bit more interest in my Tumblr Account. Y’know: expressing myself through visuals rather than just mere words. And the ‘words’ have been translating into work with other avenues.

Trussardi 1911 Navajo Camo Weekender via SlamXHype

I’m noticing more and more people adapting to the androgyny in fashion trend I’ve been talking about for a couple of years now. But when I put myself together, and really analyse my style, as much as I like men’s clothing, it doesn’t quite come across as androgynous on me. It’s probably all to do with my curves, hairstyle, make-up. To be honest, I don’t really think about it as androgynous anymore. Matter-of-fact, as I’ve said before on this blog, I’ve been wearing men’s clothes since I was a kid – my Dad’s clothing. So, I guess it’s all just ritualistic dressing for me.

I’m also starting to pick up on gimmicks. It’s an ugly word I know. But it is what it is. For some people it’s a haircut, for others it’s an article of clothing. For me, well, I don’t have one. I wonder if that’s a bad thing. I mean, as much as I love menswear, I also have a penchant for embellished accoutrements and exquisite gowns. I guess menswear is a practicality for me. A reality from the ball room gowns and dresses I wish I could wear. Though, I must admit, I don’t have any desire to walk around town as some kind of obvious fashion plate. Kudos to those who do, though.

Hey I’ve done something I’m super duper proud of (sounds corny, I know). But the thought of making an attempt to do what I have done is like, total brownie points. But I’m treading lightly with it. And when it comes together, I’m gonna share it with you all.


See more of my favourite pieces on my TUMBLR

Musing: Beauty

In Beauty, culture, style on June 9, 2011 at 6:50 pm

Sacha M’Baye via Beautiful Women and Men

I just wrote a piece for a magazine I hope I don’t regret. It was rather personal and entertained a fantasy I’ve been pondering for a minute. Which is funny because I always find personal essays, particularly on sex, drugs and things of this nature to be tacky.

I didn’t always used to be like this. There was a time when I had a rather ‘intimate’ blog. But times have changed. I relish inspiring people with my experiences, but I don’t want or need any favours. And I don’t consider it tasteful. But maybe I’m being a bit delusional and it’s not as bad as I think.

When I chose the topic, I kinda sorta thought it would be hard to come up with a 900 word pice on it. (And I should say that I’ve been getting a lot of long-winded commissions as of late.) But I knocked it out. Sure, it took a bit of thinking; had to (try) and come up with a cohesive argument, but as I got to writing, I saw the point I was trying to illustrate. What I will say, is it pertains to beauty. A man’s beauty, and how this plays a part in my life.

Looking back on men I’ve been involved with, non of them were 10s. By any means. Matter-of-fact, some were butt ugly. OK. Maybe not ‘butt’ but I could have done better. So now, I’ve taken a step back and decided I’d like to have a dime. Yes, I want a 10 out 10. But I don’t want a bum. I want a dime piece that can do for me. HA! I suppose that’s a long shot for most. But I mean, I’ve been on these sub-par dudes for such a long time, that it’s time to get me one that’s got it. I want tall kids. They’ll be smart,  and driven, especially with my genes. And they’ll be privileged with beauty. I mean, that’s inevitable.

I’m not saying  I want a dream. But I mean, I think it’s time to up the stakes when it comes to things I’ve compromised in the past.

So, with this article, or essay, if you will, I went with what’s considered the highest tier. That way, if he’s not particularly that thing, but he sure as hell could pass for it, then I’m good. And there’s a lot of that here, in Europe. Shoot, there’s a heck more of that here than in Toronto. I’ve heard they tend to be in New York, but I’ve been there enough to say they’re not hovering in areas in the open. That’s for sure.

See more male beauties on my TUMBLR

Some Givenchy Sexy

In culture, designer, style on June 9, 2011 at 12:09 pm

Givenchy Hi Top sneakers via selectism

I’ve got a serious problem. Sneakers. Quite coincidental considering I haven’t worn a single pair since moving back to London. But that’s also because I don’t own a pair of jeans at the moment. Out of all things I’ve got rid of: heels, boots, jackets, sneakers have been the hardest items to part with. Well, these Givenchy kicks don’t help much.

Givenchy Rottweiler shirt via Selectism.

I’ve got another problem. I don’t think I could make my admiration for Givenchy any more clear. Initially, I wasn’t crazy about Tisci’s Fall/Winter 2011 menswear delivery. But when paired with the high tops as seen up top, I’ve had a major change of heart.

I’m at a different stage in my life. I’m not finding my style, I know what I’m about. And my clothing reflects my mood. Superstitious people are afraid of black. Apparently it attracts ‘evil’ spirits and bad luck. I don’t know what to say about that, because it’s a staple. And, I beg to differ with regards to its negative connotations. According to Colour Wheel Pro, black “denotes strength and authority; and gives the feeling of perspective and depth.” I consider it to be the most sophisticated hue of the lot and the perfect contrast to every colour under the sun. Top it with  an angry Rottweiler, one of the most misunderstood pits of hound lot, and you’ve got a pretty fierce combination. In my so called ‘predicament’, being a lover of the unknown, and drawn to things people fear, what’s a girl to do?

Well, in my case, fundraise the money to the coveted pieces. Rock them and wear them as tokens of my strength.

Shout out to Selectism for providing the images. See more of my favourite Givenchy pieces on my TUMBLR.

Musing: Paolo Roldan

In Canadian, Fashion, Men, model, style on June 5, 2011 at 6:08 pm

There’s a difference between fixation and fascination. Doing what I do, and my naturally investigative nature, I have been fortunate to meet people that have contributed to my experiences in one way or another. Good and bad. I have met people from YouTube , Facebook, MySpace, or simply walked into a room realising I had to know THAT person for whatever reason. My opportunistic instinct would kick in and my mind floods with ideas. It’s like a rush. And I transform from a meek figure on the sidelines to a Journalist with a purpose. In this case, with Paolo Roldan a Canadian model, it was a gradual progression.

I befriended another male model many moons ago named Ali. I was a volunteer at a fundraiser for M-A-C called Fashion Cares. As Ali walked by my friend and I, the top half of his body painted in glitter, my friend made a flirtatious gesture. He was sweet about it, and hung out with us for the rest of the night. Ali, who was from Pakistan, resided in Denmark. He was trying the Toronto fashion scene out and didn’t have much friends. But he was an Adonis: smooth toffee coloured skin, and full heart-shaped lips. He seemed somewhat precocious and a bit naive. I kept in touch with Ali, hung out a few times. A first impression would have you believing Ali was cocky, but in actuality, he was one of the sweetest people anyone could know.

I came home one day and checked my voicemail. Ali was moving back to Denmark. He thanked me for ‘everything I did for him’ which really wasn’t much. I never heard from, or saw him again, but sometimes I wonder how he is doing.

When I met Paolo, I felt got the same feeling I had with Ali. A lot of the time, you would expect an egotistical attitude from models. Particularly men. I’m sure Paolo has his moments, but I am not the giddy type. And I had my eye on Paolo. I had seen him twice before. But I had no idea who he was until someone told me. I didn’t pay much attention to it until I came across a profile on him in a publication. I used him once before. But he reappeared in my life in the knick of time. There was something I needed to accomplish before I moved back to the UK and Paolo was the missing link. I needed him. I had to act fast.

After having a proper conversation with him, I was fascinated by the things I automatically assumed he would know but didn’t, things I learned from him, and human perceptions. I always knew my niche within the industry, but this experience confirmed it. I have made Paolo my un-official muse though he’s not aware of it.

I do not know anything about Paolo. I don’t I want to know him either. He has served his purpose as someone who brought me closer to a brand, Givenchy, I hold very close to me. During our interview, my head was in the clouds by the fact that there I was, a few days before permanently leaving the country, with this person who creates fantasies for a brand I magnify. He was my subject of a story for a leading post-punk magazine I dreamed of writing for called i-D. When things like this happen, it has a profound effect on your reality.

Now, in London, during the Central Saint Martins graduate show, I stole a quick minute with another fashion designer I spoke about endlessly for another dream magazine, Christopher Kane. Then, I walked right up to the honorable Hilary Alexander and introduced myself. I have chatted up with Giles Deacon, fashion maven of a generation. I can’t begin to imagine what else is in store. Sometimes certain things happen, like my moment with Paolo, that are precursors for what things may come.

Shout out to Paolo Azarraga for providing the images.

See more of Paolo Roldan on my TUMBLR.

Pendleton Woolen Mills – The Portland Collection

In Fashion, Good Look, style on June 5, 2011 at 2:06 pm

In October of last year, I browsed the racks of a popular Toronto thrift store called Black Market Vintage looking for a garment that spoke to me. I had passed the store a couple of times, but admittedly, I was never drawn to it. When it comes to thrift shopping, I prefer strategically merchandised spaces that stimulate my senses with floral scents and pretty attendants. Black Market Vintage, located on the ‘commercial’ side of Queen Street West, is plopped between a sushi restaurant and a local homeless crew – hounds included. I’m not sure why I decided to sneak a peak that day, but I am happy I did.

As I looked through the racks, I was immediately entranced by a cropped fuchsia-orange Navajo print jacket. It was $10 (CAD). I didn’t hesitate. I felt I had landed on a goldmine. When I wore it to work the next day, I was spoiled with compliments. On my way home, a young, stylish man asked me if my coat was from “Opening Ceremony.” Of course not! “Well you look like a million bucks,” he told me. I couldn’t be happier.

When I got home I checked the label. It read Pendleton Woolen Mills, presumably from the 90s. And unbeknownst to me, it was a hot ticket item. Sometimes, style is imminent isn’t it…

Now, the Navajo print, specifically from Pendleton, is a must-have among men and women. I came across a post from Selectism featuring a look book from Pendleton’s Fall 2011 release titled The Portland Collection.

Designed by Nathaniel Crissman, Rachel Turk and John Blasioli, The Portland Collection is a stunning assortment of pleats and wool plaids using classic fabrics and colour ways with a ‘designer feel and urban sensibility.’ The trio has taken the concept to new levels allowing for day-to-night wear ability, an advancement from the rugged, work wear practicality it’s known for. And the prices are top-tier: dresses go for $200 (USD), while outerwear can fetch up to $700 (USD). Luckily, there is a full range of pants, signature ponchos and accessories to choose from. And if the buzz is there, the brand hopes to stock the collection at Saks Fifth Avenue, Neiman Marcus, Barneys Co-op Nordstrom and Bloomingdale’s. A far fetch from the underground treasure where I found my gem, that’s for sure.

As the power of thrift would have it, I do own a few Pendleton pieces. But at a convention in March, while browsing the aisles, I was stopped dead in my tracks by a stall decorated in a sea of coats, blankets, bags and clothing – all Pendleton. I met the lovely reps for Pendleton Canada hoping to be able to work with them somehow, but it was a transitional time and it didn’t happen. Regardless, even though I now live in the UK, I hope to keep the Pendleton tradition alive.

The images from the look book are clean. The red plaid items – including the men’s shirt, dress and tie – are key pieces. The greyscale Navajo print poncho and body bags are ones-to-watch.

However, and I will be honest, had I styled the look book, I would have used a certain model friend, and the backdrop would have been The Berry Botanic Garden, a historical botanical garden in southwest Portland. I would have captured the heart of the brand and its origin in its entirety. Maybe next time, I suppose. Shout out to uristocrat for providing the images, which were taken by Chris Hornbecker .

See more of my favourite Pendleton pieces on my TUMBLR

Acne Menswear Fall/Winter 2011

In style on May 28, 2011 at 7:26 pm

A (very) brief review

Acne‘s Fall 2011 collection represents the transition from boy to man. And it makes sense. “When did you last see young boys in proper coats, a well-ironed shirt and neat trousers?” Jonny Johansson asks. Well, a lot more than he may think.

Young men are developing their own interpretations of the ‘dandy’. Man bags, colourful blazers and trench coats have become major trends on streets across the globe. However, Acne’s menswear collection takes the concept further: many young men may not be quite in tune with exploring their feminine side. So why not offer them an alternative to ‘scrub it up’?

At time, some of the overcoats look a bit robust, which in the real world, may appear a bit out-of-place on a young’un trying to look dapper. However, the tailored suits and streaks of colour, along with the slightly cut trousers are winners. A success.

You can find a selection of favourites on my TUMBLR.

Some morning sexy

In style on May 19, 2011 at 11:52 am

The Generic Man Sportsman Hi-Tops Sneakers via Highsnobiety
Black sneakers with white soles, so generic. This colourway is not usually in my ‘look’ book, but when I caught sight of the freshness, I had a change of heart. Could I finally be growing up? I mean, your shoes say a lot about you, right. So, when it comes to my kicks, I like colours, even if only on the trimmings. Just something that gives it character. But here, the ‘personality’ is in the detailing: check the high-quality leather, here. It’s so fresh, you see the the grain of the leather. I’m sure they used a Chrome-tanning (a method using soluble chromium salts) and added a sheen to give the show its sexy gloss.

The mans them are stepping up their game, I see.

You can see my favourites from the selection on my Tumblr


In style on May 10, 2011 at 11:46 pm

Here we go:

When I created, the intent was to split my personality. I used to have a schizophrenic blog (which has since died), but that wasn’t doing me any favours. In order to get somewhere – anywhere – I had to separate the controversial, angry person, from the mainstream one that would get me work. And, in turn, it worked. Since then, I’ve eliminated the asshole altogether, and I can now say that I’m on my therapeutic path to enlightenment. It sounds corny, but it’s true. Mind you, that venter still lurks within, but as I’ve progressed, maintaining my dignity and a polished image has become a priority. Yes, it’s called growing up. was an exploration. It’s still apart of me. But, the thing is, I’m not a fashion person. I don’t obsess over the latest must-have item. I don’t care about fashion trends. Well, unless there’s a historical and sociological depth to them. So who am I to call my blog safra On Fashion, especially when I’ve shown a continuous preference for style?

I will be making this blog more personal. But no. You won’t be seeing my face. This is not ‘a look at me, I’m backstage at London Fashion Week‘ (yes, I’m moving back to London. Back home). Or a ‘I know how to dress’ blog. But it is a style blog. And though I’ve thought about it, I’m not going to emulate, or any other magazine I’ve dreamt of writing for. Will it be newsy? probably. Will it be sarcastic? Definitely. But it’s going to the next level. It’s going to show my production side, creative side, whatever side. But it’s all going to pertain to style.

Which is me. My style, is street. I’m a girl who likes menswear. I read Vogue, and i-D. I appreciate lifestyle: that means art, culture, and food. To me, fashion is ephemeral. Style is timeless. What more can I say? Most importantly, I have finally come to grips. I don’t need to be the next big thing. That’s fashion. But a matriarch – that’s style.

On another note: I’ll be honest. The reasoning behind this post was complete bullshit. It’s really called Safra On Style now, because I lost my domain name. So, I guess I’m still a bit schizo after all! (wink).

If I were a boy: Casely-Hayford

In art, British, culture, designer, Fashion, style on March 18, 2011 at 1:11 am

You know, I’ll admit it: I have an obsession with style. So I don’t discriminate. And I’ll never constrict myself my personal style to work settings, social environments or the like. If I come across something I consider to be of good taste, I’m gonna give it credit.

In this case, to come across a family – a black family – with such a strong linage, in fashion, politics – that’s style. And it’s fascinated when you realize that unless you’re deep into a certain culture, you wouldn’t know who the Casely-Hayford clan is. And they’re prominent.

Joseph Ephraim Casely-Hayford was a Lawyer, Author and political leader, better known as “King of the West,” who aimed to improve quality of life for West-Africa’ citizens.

Sydney Casely-Hayford is a highly respected business and financial analysis in Ghana. And look at him, he’s got class.

Dr Augustus Casely-Hayford, art historian with an extremely long title, demonstrates a passion for the craft that it’s only right to reference him when it comes to education on African art.

And then, perhaps, the most ‘fashionable’ of the Casely-Hayford tree is Joe Casely-Hayford and he son, Charlie.

I came upon Joe about four years after his infamous “t-shirt” collaboration with renowned artist Chris Ofili. The shirt, according to the Victoria & Albert museum press release, reflected the ‘ideas of liberations’ demonstrated in the artists’ works. The collaboration was fitting as they were two of the most prevalent in their field at the time. Chris Ofili had gone on to massive success, while Joe, still active, no doubt, went low-pro. However, with the introduction to his son, Charlie, a burgeoning style icon at the tender age of, 23? Casely-Hayford and son are progressively becoming international style icons.

Joe’s most recent venture was collaborating with UK department store chain John Lewis on a collection of menswear pieces:

While Charlie was apart of the ad campaign – shot by Todd Selby – in celebration of Jack Purcell’s 75th anniversary:

2011 was a good year for the father-son duo. It will be exciting to see where the new year will take them, especially when you have this type of talent, and passion. My main thing, though, is that it (they) will hit the younger (black) generation.

I respect figures like Kanye West and their attempts to incorporate high-fashion into our culture. But within cultural circles, there’s a certain swag that’s not flamboyant or showy, it’s intrinsic. There’s a love of art, being punk – in a rebellious sense – and cultivated. And the Casely-Hayford’s represent that. This is important. They are important. A much needed part of black culture.