Introducing SlashCode: The Brand That Geekdom Needs

On my never-ending quest to find examples of designers bridging the gap between the geek and the chic, imagine my delight when the mountain came to Muhammad. That mountain is SlashCode a new premium brand after my own heart.

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McQ Alexander McQueen X Manga

Forward to Fall

Fall is just around the corner, you guys. We’ve yet to hit a 100 degree day in NYC, but while we’re out and about getting a golden glow, the fall collections are starting to arrive in stores.  Here’s the first of a few favorites in this mini series to get you excited for the approaching season. 

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Not since Paradise Kiss have I witnessed a fusion of luxury fashion and manga that sent my heart soaring, and indulged my every fashion obsessed geek girl’s dream. The only other book to ever do that was Sina Grace’s Not My Bag. Which was in fact largely a comic book ode  to Alexander McQueen (so obviously a favorite of mine) and, note to self: It’s high time I review that for you here!  In the meantime… Continue reading

Harrods Disney Princess Holiday Windows

HARRODS’ DISNEY PRINCESS HOLIDAY WINDOWS REVEALED!

With fireworks, fanfaire, and Cinderella and her fairy godmother arriving by carriage, the unveiling of Harrods’ incredible holiday windows was quite the spectacle. One that makes a lowly boutique store visual merchandiser (with a teeny, tiny budget) like myself, marvel, take notes, draw inspiration, and….breathe a  huge sigh. Oh high-end department store visual merchandising job, how I covet thee.

Now if only I had a fairy godmother….

Harrods

(source: Vogue.co.uk)

If you want to see the gowns in action, and view the original designer sketches, check them all out here!)

Once Upon A Dream : Harrods’ Designer Disney Princesses

They’re here, they’re here! We’re witnessing a MAJOR Fashion + Geekery moment, thanks to Harrods. DISNEY geekery that is, and fashion of the highest caliber.

When Harrods announced at the begining of the year that they had asked 10 top designers, including Oscar De La Renta (fave!), Elie Saab, Marchesa and Versace, to create custom gowns inspired by Disney princesses, I was over the moon. The announcement came complete with a teaser sketch of Valentino‘s couture interpretation of Belle’s infamous yellow ball gown.

Now, with the windows to be unveiled on November 1st, not only does Harrods give us a look at ALL the sketches (scroll down), but some of the princesses, from Pocahontas to Tiana, to Ariel… are brought to life in this teaser. Can you instantly recognize all of them?

BELLE FROM BEAUTY AND THE BEAST BY VALENTINO
A fantasy-like dress in silk chiffon with a sheer hooded cape and layers of exquisite pleats, is accessorised with bespoke signature studded flats and a silver flower bag.

AURORA FROM SLEEPING BEAUTY BY ELIE SAAB
Encapsulating the natural grace and innocence of Aurora, this beautiful gown in pale pink is embellished with scattered exquisite beading.

ARIEL FROM THE LITTLE MERMAID BY MARCHESA
A chic and elegant deep blue silk evening gown has been beautifully crafted to combine luxurious draped fabrics, which perfectly embody modern feminine style – capturing Ariel’s adventurous under-the-sea spirit.

SNOW WHITE BY OSCAR DE LA RENTA
‘Someday your prince will come…’ This silk gown is divine with intricate embroidery across the bodice and a floor-sweeping cape in signature red.

RAPUNZEL FROM TANGLED BY JENNY PACKHAM
A magical dress in pale grey adorned with incredible beading that should never be locked away.

POCAHONTAS BY ROBERTO CAVALLI
Featuring soft, golden and natural earthy colours, this gown incorporates prints evocative of dream catchers with pearl detailing. The lightness of a feather and the wings of a butterfly, it is perfect for a princess in love with freedom.

JASMINE FROM ALADDIN BY ESCADA
An exotic fuchsia silk chiffon gown encompasses the fiery beauty of Jasmine, complete with an extravagant golden flower belt.

MULAN BY MISSONI
A land of silk and jade has inspired this oriental kimono-style dazzling creation, that features bold turquoise shades and red detailing.

TIANA FROM THE PRINCESS AND THE FROG BY RALPH & RUSSO
A dream come true, this mint evening gown with a sweetheart neckline and mesh overlay, features scattered crystals that cascade into a layered tulle skirt.

CINDERELLA BY VERSACE
You shall go to the ball’, in a stunning contemporary interpretation complete with golden layers, a tiara, a bold statement-necklace and of course, glass slippers – emblazoned with the iconic Versace medusa motif.

November 1st can’t come soon enough. Now, how do I win myself  a trip to London?!

IS MY GEEK SHOWING? SWEATERS FOR THE CON AND BEYOND

  OCTOBER: Cool, crisp autumn air. Pumpkin Spice lattes. The culmination of Fashion Week season…. and New York Comic Con. Yup, October’s pretty epic. And if you’re like me, you’re really looking forward to layering. (I have quite the extensive … Continue reading

RALPH LAUREN X DOWNTON ABBEY

I’ve been looking forward to writing this post for ages. Why the hold-up? Well, aside from a conscious decision I’ve made to spend a little less time away from social media to focus on my own collection (read: portfolio), when Ralph Lauren had debuted this fall collection, I hadn’t yet actually seen the series (!!!!) . I know, clearly you must think I’ve had no right calling myself a chic geek until this point. The fashionably geeky elite shake their heads disapprovingly.

However, having finally caught up to the rest of the world, via a little help from a friend’s Netflix account and a Hulu Plus free trail, (I am TV-less), I too have fallen in love with the fashions, the characters (BATES!), the fashions, and overlapping intrigues of the Abbey’s residents… also, the fashions.

And while I was giddy with excitement over the idea of comparing the ultimate fashion plus geekery crossover spectacular—The A-list cast is comprised of many familiar faces from other well-known series’. The Dowager Countess herself (Maggie Smith) seems almost a continuation of Smith’s Professor McGonagall from the Harry Potter films. Too, we’ve had our shouting at our screens “OMG, she’s that chick/ he’s that dude from Game of Thrones!” moments. And so on. (this a show that Vogue writers are obsessed with, you guys. Obsessed)— I found, that there wasn’t much to compare. Hear me out.

What I loved about the collection: It’s exactly what you’d expect from Ralph Lauren. What I didn’t love about the collection: ….It’s exactly what you’d expect from Ralph Lauren. I love the label. It’s known the world over for producing chic, luxurious, beautifully tailored garments. At some point or another, we’ve coveted many a timeless piece of his. But that’s just it. Those beautiful, timeless, luxurious pieces worthy of the English aristocracy will always be there (I suddenly NEED a gold cardigan). More than anything, this collection was more of just Ralph Lauren doing Ralph Lauren. Suddenly creating those pieces in tweeds, styling them with all the hats, doesn’t necessarily make it Downton Abbey.

Can we see the nods to Yorkshire? Absolutely. And I love that the inspiration goes beyond dresses to the menswear. Does it look like Lady Mary raided Matthew’s closet at the start of the show? Yes. Would Lady Sybil jump at the chance to wear ALL the pants? Yes. But I suspect a second reference is at work here too. Why? Because Ralph just can’t help himself….

Points:

  • Stage set with stunning chandelier over the runway? Check.
  • Downton Abbey theme opening the show? Check (wait, it has WORDS?!)
  • References to WWI era England? There were hunting plaids, smoking jackets, jodhpurs (albiet, in velvet)… umm… check.
  • A feather cape worthy of the Dowager Countess? Check.
  • Models gracing the runway sporting canes they could’ve borrowed from Mr. Bates?  Check.

To my knowledge, however, he only has the one. So where could the other have come from? What other fictional character could’ve said, “here, Ralph, the lady can borrow mine?” (Because, let’s be honest, the countess isn’t letting anyone touch her cane. Ever.) And this is possibly where the allusion to the second reference is made. The cloches, the bowlers, the top hats…. Yorkshire? Yeah, I see it. But what of the nods to the flapper towards the end?  Like I said, Ralph just can’t help himself. Did you see the Spring collection? The beading and Art Deco embroideries look less like a preview of Downton season 3, and more like a continuation of Spring/Summer, the Roaring Twenties and Ralph’s favorite go-to reference…. Gatsby.

Here, in a review of Spring 2012, Style.com writer Nicole Phelps, offers insight:

NEW YORK, September 15, 2011

In 1974, not long after he founded his company, Ralph Lauren designed the costumes for The Great Gatsby. They launched a mini Jazz Age trend at the time and jump-started his career. Today, with Baz Luhrmann remaking the film— are reprising the roles originally played by Robert Redford and Mia Farrow—Lauren took the opportunity to revisit the roaring twenties, half a year before the movie actually hits screens and everybody and his mother decides to “do” the decade themselves.

More like a whole year before, as Warner Bros. just announced on Monday that the film has been pushed back from it’s original Christmas release, to Summer 2013. But now, it all makes sense.

And now, something else to think about: In a fight (over a Lauren gown, of course) who would win: Lady Mary, or Daisy?

Carey Mulligan and Leonardo DiCaprio

JOHN GALLIANO + SHERLOCK HOLMES

A few weeks ago, May 22nd, to be precise, we celebrated the birthday of renowned author, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. Many of us may have been caught unawares if not for the twitter trending topic, as for some reason, Google failed to publish a themed masthead to mark the occasion, (what up, Google? You did it in ‘06). You know, because we depend on Google for absolutely everything.

To mark the occasion, I got as far as drafting this post, before partaking in a marathon viewing party of the latest films inspired by Doyle’s most notable character— and one of pop culture’s most iconic— super sleuth Sherlock Holmes. I have a confession to make, I hadn’t actually seen the Robert Downey Jr. films until then! And as they were more or less the direct inspiration for John Galliano’s Fall/Winter ‘10 menswear show, I couldn’t very well publish this mini showcase without first understanding the reference myself.

The Galliano show was broken down into three stories, or what one LA Times reviewer more fittingly named, scenes. I give you examples of the first two (the last one’s kind of a hot mess) above. The first is representative of the iconic Sherlock Holmes look, pipe, deerstalker cap and all (a design choice made by the original illustrator, Sidney Paget). Then, from Baker Street to Savile Row, it segways into the modern, well-dressed English gent. For those opposed to deerstalkers, PVC, and exaggerated dropped crotches, the more sharply tailored pieces are more for you. Lapels, ties… you may even be tempted to rock the cape!

Speaking of not understanding the reference, sure, this last guy can pull off the man corset well enough, but what’s it doing here? According to Galliano it’s meant to evoke the idea of keeping the other parts of one’s psyche suppressed. I get it, I do. After a… err…healthy debate with a close non-fashion friend, however, it seems more like an excuse for the designer to throw in some, “signature Galliano,” and less an accurate representation of anything, as Mr. OCD, junkie, “high-functioning sociopath,” Holmes…. doesn’t really suppress anything.

And if you’re excited about this post, you shouldn’t either.

PRADA + FAIRIES

 
Prada is a name synonymous with luxury, quality, and innovation. Even in the cyclical world of fashion, leave it up to Miuccia Prada to reinvent the wheel, and offer a largely unexpected twist on the RTW collection, season after season.
For Spring 2008, she playfully mixed the old—late 60s, early 70s silhouettes—and the new—playful cutaways, and the art nouveau-meets surrealist-meets manga masterpieces by the profound James Jean, printed in segments onto silks and chiffons. Gown-up, yet whimsical, pants, tunics, skirts, dresses, all marched down the runway, to sing a song of fairies.
Not enough can be said about how masterful James Jean is (update: I have recently discovered FABLES. Those of you who are familiar with the series, have seen Jean’s work grace the covers of this much loved story!) . More than eye candy, his work is porn for illustrators. And if you didn’t happen to snag one of those highly coveted Prada fairy bags (I know I didn’t), I now invite you to click through the images below and see up close for yourself.
Make like Miuccia: take it in, be inspired, and create. No fairy dust required.
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Chanel + Dark Crystal

A few short weeks ago, we were partaking in a series of fundraising events to send Scarlet Sinclair—an amazing tattoo artist, and, dare-I-say, legend in the burlesque community—off to France, to study under renowned faerie artist (speaking of legends), Brian Froud. One of the events, was a screening of Froud’s faery film collaborations with Jim Henson. The cult classics: Labyrinth and the Dark Crystal. (I now know exactly what you’re thinking, because you’re thinking of Bowie. You’re welcome.) Meanwhile, back in France, just a few days before the screening, Karl Lagerfeld debuted Chanel’s A/W 2013 collection during Paris Fashion Week, and holy crap, my mouth fell open at the sight of this fashion nerdgasmic coincidence: A Dark Crystal inspired collection?!

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