Safra

Posts Tagged ‘Vogue’

Parting ways

In Fashion on May 21, 2011 at 1:46 pm

I move a lot. So, over the years, parting ways with ‘stuff’ starts to feel less invested. Then again, I’ve been lucky. I’ve always had somewhere to store something: grandparents, friends, but this time around, I’m really treating this move back to London with maturity.

At first, I thought it’d be easy. Then I started going through my things. Inspection suddenly causes introspection, and that’s when emotions kick in. Memories kick in. I am a hoarder, kind of. But with my moving around, I have also learned to live in confined spaces which meant less things. I thought they were ‘just stuff’, I guess I was wrong.

I thought about selling my stuff on craigslist. Then I decided not to. I’m donating them. My hope is that they’ll make someone just as happy as they made me. I mean, that type of thing is priceless…

Sponge Bob, I’m gonna miss you kid. Even when and if I ever come back to the T.Dot, there will never be another you. Sure, I can go another you, but I’ve had you for over five years. You’ve been through washing machines, you’ve been a cushion as confidant, so many things. You’ve gained so much character over the years. I don’t think I even loved my Barbies this much as a kid. Then again, you were a practical and multipurpose tool.


Ah, my recorder. I bought you how long ago? I can’t remember. But you’re obviously old school. And you’ve been replaced by a more tedious yet high-tech device. But we’ve had some great moments and interviews. With you, I’ve had everyone from Lil’ Scrappy and Brooke Hogan, to Drake, The Cool Kids and Kid Cudi. You have screwed me over and you’ve been my savior. But I think what’s most important is that you were there during the pivotal moments of my career.


I suppose this is why I say I’m a hoarder. When I first left for the UK in 2008 it was a lot worse. I spent thousands of dollars on magazines and books. This time I was much smarter. But, you know, when you realize you’re parting ways with a back issue of Vogue from 1964, matter of fact, you’ve got a time line of magazine at your disposal. You’ve strategically organized your collection from edgy to commercial. And all of these readings, even if you’ve never read them (which hurts even more) come to define who you are and exactly where you’re heading. This is the one reason that I will settle down. Because as long as I’m living, I told this memory close to my heart.


Excuse my language but you see this computer? This right here is the mutherfucker. And I mean that in the nastiest way possible. OK. I’ll admit that it was on its last legs, I was even told that when I brought it into Future Shop when it was acting up. But the fact that it couldn’t just hold on a little bit longer. The fact that it gave up and out on me THE DAY BEFORE I was leaving, that’s just not cool. What sickens me even more is that there’s stuff on there that I need: Adobe Photoshop, Dreamweaver, documents, etc. I was told that after all the costs, it would be better to just get a new computer. Forget that. I need this computer. We weren’t together for very long, maybe four months or so. And maybe I wasn’t the nicest to it, but I was not terrible. I had it on 24 hours a day, this is true. But it became a life line. I need this life line when I get to the UK. Man, I can’t even go on about this anymore. To hell with you.

And yes, there’s clothes as well. A lot of you who know me, who read my blog, know me as all black everything, or jeans, tees and kicks. But I’ve got a lot going on. I’ve got rid of a (real) fur coat I’ve never worn. Beautiful blouses, dresses, colourful ensembles (yes, I adorn colour!) and lots and lots of shoes. I’ve donated them all the my nearest Salvation Army (on Queen and Landsdowne). If even if I don’t see you, I know you copped my shit.

See more on my Tumblr

i-D Pre-Spring 2011

In Fashion on February 4, 2011 at 11:45 pm


via Fashion gone Rogue

Oh la la! Chanel Iman is naked! She really does want to be the best, doesn’t she.

i-D is notorious for using the naked form as a form of free expression, but my connection to the magazine is much more deep routed than an exposed nipple.

Hmm. I’m trying to remember when I first came up this magazine. It wasn’t all that long ago, probably 2006, give or take. I remember being taken aback by its post-punk cover. Funny because it’s hard to pin down exactly which one it was. They are all avant-garde. Every flick through its pages reveals over-the-top styling, make-up, imagery. It’s a staple in my collection. More so than any Vogue, Nylon or Harper’s Bazaar that I own. This magazine shapes who I am as a person who breathes art, fashion and music.

It is the first magazine, and this is fact, to even bridge high-fashion with hip-hop culture, something I hold very dear to my hear.


image via Fashion gone Rogue

The magazine was founded in 1980 by former Vogue art director Terry Jones, who has remained there to this day. The objective of the magazine was to rebel against the grain; be different from the other fashion magazines out at the time, by pushing the lines of fashion, art and culture as a whole. They added their signature wink on every cover, as if to say “We’re doin’ this our way buddy. Here’s to winkin’ at you.” A trademark that has permeated through generations, and is still synonymous anarchy. Something I can most certain relate to.


image via Fashion Gone Rogue

Another thing to note: with all these magazines showing preference to Actors and Actresses, it is one of the few few left that still put models on its cover. Hence its fearless attitude towards pushing boundaries.Newer magazines like V, Katie Grand’s LOVE, and POP try to infiltrate their own interpretations of the movement. But once you’ve worn the i-D badge, it is yours for the keeping.

The upcoming edition features former Dior Homme designer Hedi Slimane, supermodel cum singer Vanessa Paradis and a whirlwind of models including Hilary Rhoda, Erin Wasson, Jessica Stam, Ajak Deng, Liu Wen, Kirsi Pyrhonen, Milou Van Groesen, Rose Cordero, and Jeneil Williams. If you cop it, be prepared for unconventional interviews, editorials and endless inspiration.

Sure to be a juicy read.

Francesco Vezzoli @ Gagosian New York

In art, culture, Fashion, Fashion Heat, Global Musing, Good Look on February 3, 2011 at 6:20 pm


Image via Gagosian

What a coincidence – I was reading about Francesco Vezzoli in Vogue the other day. Now he’s having his first solo exhibition at one of the most – if not the most – revered galleries in the world. According to the press release Vezzoli will transform

“Gagosian’s vast gallery into a Renaissance chapel, he has installed enlarged reinterpretations of fifteenth- and sixteenth-century Madonna-and-Child paintings by Giovanni Bellini, Leonardo da Vinci, Sandro Botticelli and others. But instead of the beatific Madonnas that grace each of the historical precedents, Vezzoli’s women are contemporary supermodels — Claudia Schiffer, Tatjana Patitz, Linda Evangelista, Stephanie Seymour, and Kim Alexis, among others. In conflating supermodels with historical religious icons, Vezzoli points to the societal worship of figures from the fashion and celebrity industries.

In each work, the supermodel and child are adorned with makeup, tattoos and large oblong tears, rendered in needlepoint (Vezzoli also actually signs some of the works with a prominent FV, a needle and thread forming part of the initials).”

As you can imagine, the inclusion of supermodels and ‘needle point’ technique is sure to seduce a strong fashion crowd.

If you’re in the New York area, this could be a good one.

Saturday, February 5th, from 6 to 8pm
Gagosian Gallery, West 21st Street
522 West 21st Street
New York, NY 10011
T. 212.741.1717

An interview with Vezzoli on a collaboration with Lady Gaga

Shout out to LadyGagaNu for providing the video

Musing: Vogue Australia

In Fashion, Fashion Heat, Good Look on January 31, 2011 at 6:15 pm


Well, well. Now don’t I feel like Andy Warhol right now.

All my money goes into doing my hair, buying kicks, and fashion magazines. I’ve tried to stay away from those magazine stores. But shoot. I go in, think ‘no big deal. I’ll just buy one. Okay, maybe two.’ Those friendly guys behind the counter leave me alone, and I end up leaving with stacks. And at least three in my are more than $10. The Australian magazines tend to be the most expensive (actually, I lied, the crown goes to the Italian editions). But I’m learning to narrow it down to the bare essentials.

Vogue is an essential. So, with the exception of the Italian, Nippon and Spain editions – it’s not that I don’t like them, it’s just that one would leave no room for cost-effective ones – I make a conscious effort to buy them every month. And hey, I don’t always read them, but I believe that by just keeping in your person, the creative energy will wear off. Sometimes, it actually works. Anyway, out of all my collector editions, Vogue Australia is in my list. However, I haven’t found the magazine around in quite a while. Why isn’t it in Toronto? Well, I’ve been hearing some drama about strikes going on with our distribution people. And, well, quite frankly, that’s not my problem. Right now, I feel a bit out of the loop. I do feel it’s a bit under-appreciated compared to its counterparts, but I value the magazine, for reasons that are personal. And no, I’m not from Australia.

And so we have the March issue of Vogue Australia. Looking all sexy, I can image the colour bursting through its pages. Man, I do hope things get cleared up soon. I’m feeling a bit empty.

Musing: Shala Monroque

In Fashion, Icon on January 24, 2011 at 8:00 pm

Is Shala a girl you should know? I’m not sure. Is she my obsession? Not quite. I do however, believe that she’s a tremendously hard worker who is now enjoying the fruits of her labour. Despite the fact that she’s been in the art world for quite a long time, people are only catching on now. Shala is one of the many beautiful, driven women of colour in the tight-knit art and fashion worlds, but, much to her chagrin, she’s being sited as the “party girl,” and “girlfriend” of Larry Gagosian. I’m sure she doesn’t mind. And yes, the Pop magazine Editor-at-Large title is a good, if not, great look, but still. Let us not undermine her passion and tenacity.


Her ebony skin sparkles. Her cat-shaped eyes seduce. Her mona lisa smile is a facade – she’s more powerful than you. And, because she’s a clever girl, she’s playing on her strengths. And people are loving it. But, Shala, sweet Shala, you are much more than a blurb in “Vogue’s People are talking about…” pages. I know, for a fact, that you have the power to mould a culture. And I mean, not just for wearing head-to-toe Prada, but really creating a culture for young black women to look up to.

I like you Shala, I really do. And I won’t be surprised if we come full circle, eventually.

Musing: BRPYV

In Fashion, Fashion Heat, Global Musing, history, Icon, style on January 20, 2011 at 6:22 pm


When it comes to fashion, for me, it’s not just about the clothes, but the colourful characters apart of it. I wouldn’t strive to be in fashion had it not been for Diana Vreeland’s authorized, and unauthorized biographies. Or her work during her tenure at Vogue and Harper’s Bazaar. Truth be told, if it were based on the strength of fashion alone, I probably wouldn’t really be in it. And I say this because I know has ruthless the fashion world can be.

In contrast to the Anna Wintours and Sarah Mowers of the world, there are the ones that make life – not just fashion – worth living. And finally, thanks to the rise of the Internet, these people are finally becoming forces to be reckoned with.

Anna Wintour has been called the most powerful woman in fashion. So, let’s call Anna Dello Russo its MVP. She has been in fashion for over 20 years, yet, it was not until around 2008 or so, that she came center stage. Never mind Ms. Russo’s 4,000 pairs of shoes, or the apartment she has strictly for her wardrobe. Ms. Russo is a performance artist. Her and fashion are one in the same. Through her inspiration, it is okay to have a passion for fashion in the literal sense. It’s not about impulse buying, it’s about adoring beautiful things, and the escape it can bring. The runway can be like a dream, and to own an item off the runway is but a dream come true.

Ms. Russo is here to fill the void of the late Ms. Blow and all the other people we have lost over the years.

It was a humid day in New York City, and I was having lunch on a patio with a good friend of mine, but I can’t quite remember where. We lamented about our careers, shared ideas, fed off each other, and out of the blue, my friend yelled out “I love you Ms. Yaeger!” I turned around, and this caricature with bright orange hair and long skirt turned around and waved. She was the original Ms. Lynn Yaeger – the fashion reporter with a witty sense of humour. Unfortunately, I didn’t know her as the head fashion journalist at the Village Voice, but I certain feed off her articles in Vogue, T Magazine, and the New York Times. You know, both her and Ms. Russo are quirky, and both take their clothing very seriously -they just have different style.

If I lived in New York City – or London – I’d feel comfortable exploring that whimsical side of my own style. And I say that because cities like Toronto don’t always get it.

According to an article in the Guardian, when it came to trying to pin down Ms. Anna Piaggi’s status in the fashion world, the journalist asked “how did a classically educated girl from a quiet, bookish family become one of fashion’s most outrageous iconoclasts?” Well, because she didn’t want to follow the tradition of her family, of course. The mad hatter who always has something in her hand to match is a fashion force toujour. Her signature blue hair and eye shadow are just thin strokes on such a vast and complex canvas. So much so, that the Victoria and Albert Museum held an exhibition in her honour.

Ms. Piaggi plays by her rules. And for that the fashion world has nothing but respect for her character, both inside, and out.

When I started reading Tatler back in 2007, I had no idea it was a high society British magazine. I only read it after learning Fashion Teleivision, that Isabella Blow was its fashion director. And who was she? A quirky, whimsical character whose over-the-top persona was enough to turn anyone onto the publication That’s all. And since her tragic passing in 2007, admittedly, I have not really read the publication since. She was known as the woman who nurtured careers. For she “found” Philip Treacy and the late, magnificent Alexander McQueen.

Ms. Blow’s life, despite her fame, was tragic. But she paved the way for finding strength in your individual style.

Ms. Diana Vreeland was a polished dresser, but her personality was a colourful as the red sea. And yes, she loved the colour red. She was an unconventional thinker, and unbelievable story teller. And because of her ideas, had a knack for creating something grad out of absolutely nothing. Whether at Vogue or the MET, she was a curator of ideas. Ms. Vreeland turned fashion dreams into reality.

You didn’t understand Ms. Vreeland, you conceptualized her.

Steal: Evening dresses

In affordable, dress, Fashion, Fashion Heat, Good Look, Shopping, steal, Trend, Trend Report, Wish List on December 7, 2010 at 7:10 pm

I may be young, but when it comes to clothes, I’m not delusional. Most of the time. As much as I can imagine myself in an over-the-top designer dress, I know how to find my favorite brands at reasonable prices too. And still set the trend, if I must add.

The thing about designer, is that minimalism isn’t an issue. You could be bare feet with a plastic bag, and you’ll still look dope. Reason being is because designer means quality – it’s not rocket science. So while we’d love to spend $1,000+ on that dazzling couture piece, we can still look on point in less than a fraction of the price. On top of that, adorned in clothes by some of the hottest designers in the fashion bible hot list.

OK, OK, wait a minute, here. A 100% silk dress by Swedish it-brand ACNE for under $250? And where can I get that? Coggles you say? Is that not a steal? And they have my size? If you – or me for that matter – don’t get on this, well have to resort to rags. This doesn’t happen very often… if ever.

Alexander Wang, in my opinion, is the Alfred Sung of his generation. This 26-year-old fashion prodigy has received accolades from Vogue, and is top-tier to celebrities around the world. That said, to own anything by Mr. Wang is a treat. And if it’s under $200, say no more. Even if it is his secondary line.

What more do you need in a TWENTY8TWELVE dress? It’s super-mini, and it’s pink. Nicki Minaj, eat your socks. And it’s roughly under $250 (CDN).

One thing you’ll have to realize: when it comes to cost-effective designer dresses, there’s less fabric to work with. But it’s okay, it’s worth it. You’ve got the body, the look and the attitude, and a little minus degree whether won’t kill you, right? Who wouldn’t wear this grey scale body-con dress by Jonathan Saunders. I thought grey was the new black. And apparently it’s 199.50 (USD), not even $200. Go for it.
Sportmax, a subsidiary of the MaxMara empire is constant in Vogue‘s pages. Does that mean anything, well yes, it does. it’s the originator in sport-motif chic. Minimal construction, and fine detail. And to top if off, for about $250 USD, you’re getting a 2-for-1 deal, a dress and bolero in a navy hue. OK. I meant three.

Fashion Icon: Robin Givhan

In Fashion, Icon on August 16, 2010 at 9:43 pm

I’ve had many mentors in my life. And the fashion authority I admire, well, they are as cliché as Tim Blanks, Hilary Alexander, and Godfrey Deeny. But recently, I’ve developed a slight addiction to Ms. Robin Givhan, fashion editor for the Washington Post.

That’s another cliché , as we are both black women. However, in Ms. Givhan’s case, the depth in her stories stem from archaic libraries in that tiny storage disc that is her brain. You can taste the richness of her knowledge; like a slice of red velvety cake. Conservative? Definitely. (That’s okay. I’m an advocate of British Vogue, I enjoy the Financial Times’ Fashion section, and I’m pro-Lisa Armstrong.) Ms. Givhan is a by-product of the 90s. The Princeton graduate started a Reporter covering Detroit’s techno music scene in the late 80s before transitioning into fashion. She’s won a Pulitzer Prize for her fashion criticism, and her work has appeared in Vogue, Harper’s Bazaar and The New Yorker. She currently reports exclusively on the Obama family – in my opinion, the highest honour in North American standards – among her other journalistic responsibilities. Now, Ms. Givhan should be seen as a role model to women of all creeds. But I digress.

My focus is clearer now than it was yesterday. I don’t want ephemeral respect. I want to be known as someone whose tight grasp of fashion’s history translates into a cohesive analysis of its future. Is it ambitious to aim for award-winning applaud? Perhaps appearances in the publications I so admire? I’m not concerned with being a “wordsmith,” but rather, making you feel full from what I  write. Among the true intellectuals on my radar are Alexandra Shulman, Harriet Quick, Tim Blanks – who cannot be left out of the equation – and Robin Givhan. Particularly Robin Givhan. She gives me what I will one day give you.

Designer Spotlight: Ara Jo

In British, designer, Entertainer, Fashion, Fashion Heat, In the Know, London, One to Watch, Trend on August 12, 2010 at 2:55 pm

After musing over some ridiculously talented designers, it’s time to extend the platform. You see, of course a designer’s clothes are their main cred, but it’s the OZ – the creative genius with the fuel to tackle this business – that shapes the industry. So, come on now, let’s hear it for the future of fashion.

As much as I am a fan of fresh paint splattered (neatly) within Vogue’s coveted pages, I’m also a fan of the artist who smashes a window. Or, in Ara Jo’s case, adamantly gets her shit on Lady Gaga.

Ms. Jo, a 24-year-old Londoner and Central Saint Martins alumna, has a way with forging her own opportunities. Like I said, Gaga — for one. Then there’s the audacity of turning the surrealist, un-wearable side of fashion into an enticing ensemble of glam-rock pieces. Ms. Jo has evolved since her graduate collection which showcased an infectious cobweb of nude hues and sequenced sculptures. Though it’s clear that a woman’s anatomy is still Ms. Jo’s thing, the concept has taken on a more tangible form: a Gothic collection of body-con attire.

Ms. Jo works abundantly. In conjunction with new releases each season, she’s joining forces with some other new talent by way of music, and the cerebral. And no, not more mind-bending clothes, but she’s “collaborating with a Jewellery Designer – publishing a fashion book.” When asked if she has her sights on other big name prospects – obviously, she’s on it. “Roses Gabor (Gorillaz vocalist). [Hopefully] a customised outfit for the Red Bull Festival,” she explains. And so the hustle continues…

Safraonfashion: What was it that inspired you to become a Fashion Designer?

Ara Jo: When I was thirteen [I would read a lot of] fashion magazines, [and I noticed] when most people see the nice clothes in them, they’d want to buy them – or try them on. But I wanted to make them! That’s how I started to create clothes. Yep. I wasn’t good at it – considering I was only thirteen – and [I had] never made clothes before. But I was really into creating something that I could wear!

SOF: What do you want people to think of when they see your designs?

AJ: I want to be told that my work is crazy and different. That’s what I always seek, and I express that through my work. And actually, that has always been my biggest goal as a fashion designer: to be noticed as a different.

SOF: What have you learned about the fashion world that you were not taught in school?

AJ: That communication with people [is imperative]. And building contacts with [like-minded] people. But it can’t be taught, so I have learned this all by myself through this tough field. It was tough to study in Central Saint Martins with such competitive creators when I was a student. But I have been through so many things since I’ve graduated (Dealing with people, working with people, collaborating with people). I just have to experience everything that happens in fashion world. The real fashion world.

SOF: In an interview with Dazed Digital, you said you wanted to work with Lady Gaga. How did you go about bringing that idea to life?

AJ: Since my garments were worn by Lady Gaga, a lot of things have changed in my life as a fashion designer – of course. More people have curious about me, my work. So I am still keeping trying to create something cool, by designing for celebrities not just Lady Gaga. I don’t want to limit myself, now. There are so many creative people whom I want to collaborate with, and who want to collaborate with me. There are a lot of upcoming projects happening: collaborating with Buttafly – a new British singer – Junior Brat and more!

SOF: Based on a theme, which four songs would be at the top of your runway show playlist?

AJ: Oops, I always listen to hip hop and R&B, but I don’t have particular favourites in mind – it always changes. So I would say it all depends on what kind of theme I have. I will [either] select or literally make some unique tunes for the show.

Ara Jo’s Price tag: High End (from £100.00 as a little piece ~).
Where to by : Not Just a Label.

You can also contact Ara Jo here.

And today in Gaga news…

In Fashion, Fashion Heat on June 25, 2010 at 2:19 pm

Lady GaGa becomes the first artist in digital history to have three songs top the 4 millions download mark”  Peace FM Online

“Lady Gaga’s proud dad, Joseph Germanotta, phoned Manhattan strip club HeadQuarters and insisted on buying her a $700 magnum of Laurent Perrier champagne when she partied there”  myFOXla.com

“Pop singer Lady Gaga has been slammed by the anti-drugs campaigners after she admitted to her fans that she loves ecstasy.” DNA India

“A Russian billionaire gave the pop singer the huge sum for the chance to star alongside her in the 9-minute promo for ’Alejandro’.”  Post Zambia

“Lady Gaga is not about to join the ranks of celebrity mums – because she’s frightened of babies”  The Press Association

Yes. The world has officially gone gaga for the lady. Whether it be Vogue, Showstudio, countless blogs and the like. You can chew her up, spit her up, oogle her, admire her. I suppose she’s become a voice of rebellion so many people are craving right now. Her trajectory to the top has been unstoppable; she gets more and more absurd with every video, every outfit, and it seems to be quenching a thirst. Well, her she is, your GOD, your saviour. It’s all for you.