Posts Tagged ‘spring/summer 2010’

In the know: Pre-Fall 2010 Valentino, Maison Martin Margiela and more!

In Collection, designer, Fashion, Fashion Heat, Good Look, I heart, Icon, In the Know, News, Rouse, style, Trend, Trend Report on January 29, 2010 at 7:59 pm

Look 1: Valentino‘s Pre-Fall 2010 collection. Quite impressive. Definitely a different perspective from the traditional ballroom gowns it used to be. The bows and ruffles is being done quite a bit this season. But while that’s great for a line trying to go with the flow, it’s taking away from what made this iconic brand what it is in the first place.

Look 2: Maison Martin Margiela’s spring/summer 2010 collection. Breath taking. As always, MMM’s spring/summer 2010 collection is always innovative. A definite tone down from it’s 2009 glitter, but the cascading embellishment and use of fabrics and unconventional elements puts the line at the top of the ranks.

Look 3: Ann Demeulemeester‘s spring/summer 2010. Goth-punk influenced. A hot trend for 2010, but is it being over done? Considering I’m a major fan of Rad Hourani and Gareth Pugh, I’m quite happy that fashion’s embracing a darker tone.

Musing: Henrik Vibskov ss 2010 womenswear

In Collection, designer, Fashion, Fashion Heat, Good Look, In the Know, RTW, Trend on January 28, 2010 at 4:52 pm

When Henrik Vibskov’s Maja Brix works her magic for the womenswear division, I’ve got to say – I’m practically drooling. It’s a shame because I don’t feel it’s getting the accolades it truly deserves. I’ve looked far and wide for the womenswear spring/summer 2010 lookbook but man, thanks to the Berlin-based Agentur V, I was able to peep some greatness from one of the coolest brands I’ve come across so far.  

This season doesn’t stray too far from the usual loose draping and colour contour concepts– something Henrik’s known for. And while I’m not really a fan of shoulder pads or harem pants, when Maja does it, it’s got an authentic vibe that makes it fun. I mean, the impression I get is they’re having fun with it anyway, which is what makes the brand a fav to begin with.

The problem with stagnancy though, is if the designs are consistent, it gets boring. Or, if they’re trying too hard to “grow” they kinda end up  taking from other designers and loosing distinction. I find Eastern European designers more interesting – a lot harder to find mind you – but not as superficial as their western counterparts. And I hope that as Henrik’s womenswear division blossoms, it becomes a leader to a younger generation of fashion mavens. In other words, building a distinction between itself and an H&M  rip off.


Trend Report: Protruding Hips

In Collection, Fashion, Fashion Heat, Good Look, RTW, Shopping, Trend, Trend Report on January 22, 2010 at 10:54 pm

If there’s any trend worth paying attention to for 2010, it’s the rise of protruding hips. Ideal for lanky, androgynous types, a mini-dress with accentuated hips figments an hour-glass shape, drawing attention to pelvic thrusts guaranteed to reel men in like fish bait. And as you know, wide hips represent child-bearing abilities. Why else would Shakira profess that the ‘Hips Don’t Lie’?

Central Saint Martins graduate Georgia Hardinge diligently embellishes the hips for her spring/summer 2010 collection. For this I’m sure she’ll be well loved by girls  dying to add some plump to the ‘stickness.’  But beware: if you’re already hippie, a la Beyoncé, then you might want steer clear of this look; you’ll end up looking like a sci-fi Gwar groupie – not cute.

Tina Kalivas is graphic

In Collection, designer, Fashion Heat, Good Look, London, Trend on January 14, 2010 at 2:11 am

A few months back I pitched a tribal print story to a certain Canuk fash editor with blank response – maybe that’s why. But part of my few assumptions is that it’s not mainstream enough, or as safe as, say – the  fluttering floral print. Or just maybe, unlike the space-age shoulder pad, the tribal print’s bold concept is restricted to a certain under 30ish, long and lanky type. Regardless, leave it to cool fashion designers ­­— or for better words, relatively unknowns— to dance in territories trend-conscious fashion lovers dare not to go, and quite frankly not give a rat’s… ass.

Australian-born Tina Kalivas has been at the helm of graphic print fashion concepts since her début at Australian Fashion Week in 2002. And throughout her tenure in the fashion business, teetering risqué grounds – as seen in her spring/summer 2010 collection – is something she does because, well, she’s good at it.

The collection, to me at least, is very reminiscent of a park filled with those stylish hipsters in east Hackney, or on the gritty streets south side Brixton (which makes sense seeing Kalivas is a Londoner these days), but the clothes don’t reference  any political jargon. These ephemeral fashion staples are just that – flirty yet whimsical signatures.

I’ve always believed that everyone should have one unconventional piece of something in their wardrobe. If you’re very boyish girl, then a pair of heels; if you’re monochromatic, a bit of tribal print.

For quite some time I’ve also talked about owning a dashiki for home cleaning purposes, but maybe I’ll opt for a night out in a Tina Kalivas piece instead.

Rising Star: Julian Louie

In designer, Fashion, Fashion Heat, Good Look, In the Know, One to Watch, RTW, Trend on January 12, 2010 at 1:46 am

Fashion designer for the love of fashion, not commerce. That’s the best way to describe NYC-based craftsman Julian Louie. He’s been labeled as the new Prince of Fashion by NY Times Magazine — a seemingly well deserved title so far—and has already got the thumbs up by Sarah Jessica Parker. Not bad for someone who just kinda fell into the field.

Either way, he’s prodigious. After studying architecture at Cooper Union, Louie tried his hand at an internship under Tara Subkoff of Imitation of Christ (R.I.P IOC), then under Francisco Costa of Calvin Klein. As you can see, both terms were a success.

His début collection was a clear manifestation of his educational background, with lots of sharp edges and geometrical shapes. But upon his spring/summer 2010 collection, something changed – drastically.  The looks are so much more fluid, placid; it’s as though his hand swerved into the art of fashion rather than the mathematics of it. The sunset and sand colourways along with silk fabric cuts are very reminiscent of Calvin Klein, but that’s okay, because Louie maintains his own voice with a signature shape here, and embellishment there.

He’s bang on with minimalistic drapes. He has a very Va-Va-Voom `90-esque influence in this collection, best exemplified through the tank tops and high-waisted trousers.

We have a winner.

Telfar’s Spring/Summer 2010 Minstrel Show?

In designer, Fashion, Oddly Unique on January 12, 2010 at 12:42 am

I’m sorry, but I can’t —I just can’t.

You know, what I love about fashion is that you’re free to be who or whatever your heart desires. And theoretically that’s a beautiful thing. No matter how absurdly eccentric, there’s room for everyone.  And it will last for as long as you let it, seeing you can make the most of what’s given to you.

At first glimpse of the Autumn/Winter 2009 collection, NYC fashion label Telfar is bursting with potential. Suddenly, by the click of a mouse leading to the brand’s home page, I’m flabbergasted by what’s glaring at me.

Essentially, up until I don’t know when, Telfar was a funky, unisex, retro-futuristic collection with mildly satirical undertones. No biggie. Now, what can I say? I guess many will just roll their eyes at another limelight seeking designer. And while I’m not sure who in the hell Telfar Clemens is addressing, or what shock value he’s trying to induce, this, to me, is appalling. I’m sure if I call it like I see it I could run the risk of coming across as vexed; and I’m not so I won’t. I’ll let the images speak for themselves. But even when I tried to pick the collection apart, all I could see were patatoe sacks and quite frankly, it isn’t amusing nor is it funny (and they’re both one in the same). And I can’t be convinced that this is really some breathable, organic hand-made garments, either. I’d love to see more black designers in household fashoin magazines, but how can an editor at GQ take this seriously?

If you have something to say, just say it! There’s nothing wrong with using your craft to make a political point. But when I see what looks like a rendition of Mandingo as a spring/summer 2010 collection, I’m not going to say “Oh! That’s a lovely loungewear/pajama collection.” They say no press is bad press, but in this case, in a fickle economy amid a fashion rat race, there’s certain press you just can’t afford.

So I will say this: No excuses. Once again, don’t—just don’t.

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.   


Trend Reports: Betsey Johnson, Basso & Brooke and more!

In designer, Fashion, Fashion Heat, Good Look, Trend, Trend Report on December 1, 2009 at 6:42 pm

Betsey Johnson Spring/Summer 2010

ASHISH Acid Green,Sequined one-shoulder body con dress in colourful animal print.

Animal skin is having a moment – for the gazillionth time – but the emphasis is more on traditional brown leopard or black-and-white zebra prints. Colourful animal prints were an obvious theme for more edgy designers in their collections, but I didn’t really find it embraced by the masses. I can’t really guess why, except maybe it was too eccentric – too `80s retro.  And you know, that’s okay, but colourful animal print, when you really look at it, is a timeless fashion insignia. You can throw on a black blazer to give it a more contemporary feel, or if you’re rock/punk influenced (like me) you can accentuate it with a leather biker jacket for that extra glam. There’s so much you can do with it, you just have to let your imagination run wild.

Burberry Prorsum Spring/Summer 2010

Paul & Joe Sister‘s Tiffany Aqua Alba silk-chiffon dress with empire-line

Every woman is going to be wearing Tiffany aqua for spring/summer 2010. Especially if it’s a frilly, floaty chiffon dress with drapings and ruches. Tiffany aqua has traditionally been used for bridesmaid dresses – particularly outdoor weddings, as the accents in the sky and trees compliment it’s placid flavour. Anyone can pull it off, but the colour is genuinely flattering on darker skin with golden undertones, and it’s wise to keep accessories and add ons to a minimum.

Basso & Brooke Spring/Summer 2010

JONATHAN SAUNDERS Benwell, multicoloured graphic printed dress.

Contrary to Mr. Tim Blanks review on, Basso & Brooke’s s/s 2010 collection was most definitely a highlight of all shows. Maybe I’m biased; I’ve been a fan of the line since their muse, Namalee Bolle, introduced me to it two years ago. Not only that, it’s obvious (to me at least) that they’ve thrust the very British new rave movement into the mainstream through fashion. And its been adapted by designers who have either toned the concept down (Jonathan Saunders), or intensified it (Mary Katrantzou).  It may be a bit too much for some, but if you’ve followed new rave (or NU-rave as it’s also known) at some point, then you get what B&B were trying to convey through their graphic digital print. But maybe that’s why Mr. Blanks didn’t get it, he’s not in touch with this bombilate, colourful era.

Calvin Klein Spring/Summer 2010

HALSTON Citron yellow Silk-blend batwing dress

Yellow doesn’t have to just be worn in spring or summer. According to the site, wearing yellow “adds clarity to decision-making, sharper concentration skills and protection from lethargy and depression during dull weather.” Maybe it’s a good idea to wear it during harsh winter months and gloomy days to keep your spirits up. Yellow is clean and crisp. Safer than white or cream, yet more serious than pink, the colour yellow represents wisdom; particularly when worn in dusty or citrus hues with a minimal concept structure (pictured).

Images courtesy of:

Then and Now: When Fashion Was Cool

In culture, designer, Fashion, Fashion Heat, Flash Back, Good Look, London, Trend on November 25, 2009 at 9:18 pm

British Vogue‘s December issue brought on a strong sense of nostalgia for me. A specific article, The Secret History of London Fashion Week, chronicled LFW from the `80s to present. After reading the piece, an abundance of emotions got my creative juices flowing, and a whirlwind of images fled through my mind. Truth be told, I had not really known LFW until recently but I remember the iridescence that fashion had as a whole. In the article, a series of designers, supermodels and buyers went into detail about the many tribulations the show endured over the years. But the focal points – Lynne Franks, a major PR Director and Stevie Smith – the mastermind behind collection Body Map, were the most inspiring. It was they who- with the exception of Vivienne Westwood and her line – were trailblazers for what London fashion was to become.

“Our LFW debut was called Cat in the Hat Takes a Tumble With the Rumblefish,” mused Smith. “We created a way of dressing using jerseys and sweatshirts that wasn’t just for skinny people, we had old, young, fat and thin on the catwalk. Even my mum.” His vision was beyond making pretty clothes and being conventional. Body Map was a breakaway from the norm other Fashion Designers were concurring with at the time. Even Franks’s concept was avant-garde “I persuaded one my clients to sponsor a tent [in Olympia] and up it went. The lawn collapsed after a few seasons and we had to move, but this marked the start of a new mood in fashion – it was fun and funky and young.”

Though it’s not quite as prestigious as fashion week in Milan or Paris, London Fashion Week is still the best place to showcase collections of both old and young. Matter of fact, London is ahead of all fashion corners for cultivating fashion design.  But the `80s and early `90s were a pivotal moment in fashion, as most designers of today who are creatively schizophrenic draw inspiration from fashion of that time. And not just London, during the `80s fashion on a global scale became so baroque that the concept of colours and shapes held no barriers. The more abstract your dressing, the better. This was a philosophy that resonated with the fashion elite, rock stars and the hip-hop scene.

Body Map is a proven testament of playing with design concepts waywardly, and boldly. There’s fierce determination to make a statement in the collections. A great prime example of this is this piece worn by Uma Thurman:

and this punk-inspired pink, green and blue outfit:

As we move into modern times, Body Map’s concept was applied rather unconsciously by Toronto-based fashion designer Blaine Degannes of Rain Anthology:

Considering Dagannes had no background in fashion, I reckon his fashion history was extremely limited. Maybe if he did more research, it would have been easier for him to connect the dots. A reviewer of Toronto Fashion Week (where Dagannes debuted) stated his line Caribbean influenced, I’m not sure if that’s a bad thing, but it’s good when a fashion designer is influenced (much like Stevie Smith) but their upbringings. Degannes has the right idea, just not at the right level.

I do feel sorry for the pioneers who scavenge for talent now, the problem with a lot of fashion designers (much like aspiring fashion journalists) is that they’re too consumed with being something they’re not. They’re either overly processed and pretentious or stiff and dull. But all isn’t lost.

Russian designer Alexander Terexov takes the same concept and adds a resort feel to his Spring/Summer 2010 collection.

It’s safer, and glossier. But it doesn’t stand out. It’s a collection constructed for fashion-conscious pretty girls who like pretty things.

However, my when eyes trail to UK-based Ziad Ghanem‘s spring/summer 2010 collection and it gives me hope. Not just because I like punk, but because his collection is a sign of the times. With the state of the economy, we’re looking for inspiration and he gives us that by taking the Body Map concept and revitalizing it:

Very British, very fun. That’s the word! Fashion was supposed to be fun. It’s okay if historic elements are prevalent. But while art and fashion are merged together, you’re supposed to enjoy wearing the garments.

Another favorite of mine is Berlin-fashion line C.Neeon who know how to the colour and print concept seamlessly.

Bare in mind they’ve been around for a long time, but the vision was there from the beginning, that’s why they’ve come this far.

Admittedly, I have a lifetime of fashion purgatory ahead. Before allowing my inner fashion feline to emerge, I held on to what I thought I knew: Balenciaga, Yves Saint Laurent and Balmain. I liked what I thought I liked, and that was what I knew, but thanks to discovering Body Map, the eccentric world of British fashion has given me a new outlook. Not just for what to wear, but for my fashion life in general.

The Row Spring/Summer 2010

In designer, Fashion, Good Look on November 23, 2009 at 9:10 pm

The Olsen twins are a stylish duo, and their fashion line – The Row – keeps getting more mundane every collection. The Row never strays from its trademark palette, but what’s more important is the minimalist construction of the garments. The line isn’t particularly safe, it’s essential.

The Row is available at Barneys, New York.