Fashion

Weekly Words: 19th August 2017

“Ganni – Copenhagen Spring 2018” – Vogue Runway


Ganni is one of the latest scandi-brands to hit the big time. After Acne Studios, Ganni is growing to be the most talked about Scandinavian brand yet instead of conforming to the classic minimalist aesthetic favored by brands from the region, Ganni brings color and fun. I first heard of the brand a few years back when I stumbled across a mesh leopard print dress. It was sheer and flirty. I was instantly struck by the price tag. Ganni is at that sweet contemporary price point like T by Alexander Wang and The Kooples. What makes it even cooler is that the brand is stocked by retailers at all levels, from ASOS to Net-a-Porter. The Spring 2018 collection, shown at Copenhagen Fashion Week, has further solidified the brand as a go-to for cool fashion girls, with sunny yellows and wide leg pants and an abundance of denim.

“Steve Madden’s YSL Knock-Offs”

Will¬†Steve¬†Madden get off with this copy? I first noticed these some time last week and forgot to post about them. They were too direct a copy for me to ignore so here I am mentioning it this week instead. The Saint Laurent glitter boots, covered in rhinestones with an inimitable slouch silhouette were one of the buzziest pieces on the FW17 runways. The boots had a wait list by the time the show was over. Now they are getting an insane amount of editorial coverage with all of the top publications featuring them in their glossy pages. The actual Saint Laurent adverts have an image that is cropped solely on the boots. The brand just knows that they are a top item. It makes sense, then, that¬†Steve¬†Madden would make a copy. They want to get the sales too. Honestly, I hope that people don’t buy the¬†Steve¬†Madden ones because I feel like this look was just so unique and iconic that it would be a shame to buy an imitation. I also wonder if Saint Laurent will sue over these boots? They are just a little too close a copy for comfort in my opinion. Here they are on pre-order at FWRD for $10000.¬†The Steve Madden CRUSHING boots can be found by clicking the subheading link!

The Face Halo

Normally when I watch videos on YouTube of beauty gurus shilling products I realize that it is just that – them talking about products that they have been paid to promote. However, I came across Chloe Morello’s video on a new product that she is involved with, The Face Halo, I was immediately intrigued because the video demonstrated instant results. It was not a gimmick, not a lie, not a con. After thinking about it for a day or two, I ordered a pack myself. For $22 you get a three-pack of double-sided microfiber discs which are used to remove makeup. You simply wet the pads, hold it to your face, and swipe the makeup off. It sounds too good to be true but it genuinely works. For the eye area, you have to hold a little longer to get the product to loosen. No makeup remover involved, no unnecessary products, and zero waste. You simply rinse the pad after use and throw it in the washing machine with your light laundry when it needs a deeper clean. I’m so impressed and am literally telling all of my friends to buy it. It feels less dragging on the skin than makeup wipes do and it will save you money and the planet in the long term. I haven’t used it long enough yet to see a marked difference on my overall skin (if pores are less clogged, if not using oils helps me) but I am feeling very positive about this product thus far. If you don’t believe me, go on YouTube and check out the demonstrations!
Advertisements
Standard
Fashion, Weekly Words

Weekly Words: 5th August 2017

“The Blogger Divide: Converters or Brand-Builders?” – WWD

There’s an ever-evolving conversation about influencers and what their influence actually means. How does it translate into sales or awareness for brands and why even work with them (and pay them the exorbitantly high figures that they do)? With the rise of micro-influencers and brands gravitating towards those with a smaller but more engaged following, the place of the true influencers (1m plus followers on a platform) has been wavering. However, this WWD article shows that influencers are now separated into further subcategories, converters or brand-builders. Converters are the ones who actually drive sales and tend to have a smaller but more engaged following. They help the brand make sales and the influencer make money via affiliate links. Brand-builders are the ones like Chiara Ferragni who have huge followings (in Ferragni’s case, she has 10m on Instagram) but don’t necessarily convert these views into sales. However, neither type of influencer is better than the other and brands continue to work with them both. I’d be interested if there was a website out there that would be able to give you a list of all of the influencers and how their conversion actually works out so you’d be able to see who really is the most influential.

“Anthony Vaccarello’s Vision” – Harper’s Bazaar

I enjoyed reading this interview with Anthony Vaccarello, Saint Laurent’s creative director. Saint Laurent has been one of my favorite brands for as long as I can remember even caring about fashion and it is one that I keep up with season after season. Vaccarello had some large shoes to fill, entering the role after Hedi Slimane departed, but I’d say he has done a good job keeping the same level of buzz (or perhaps even growing it, marginally). Remember those slouchy glitter boots which had a waitlist at Saks the day of the runway show? They retail for $10000, FYI. I liked Vaccarello since a couple of years ago, when he was showing in Milan with the sexed-up Versace level of glam designs that put him on the map. I feel like his designs at Saint Laurent are just an extension of these with an added twist thrown in for good measure. This interview goes a little more in depth about Vaccarello’s life and career history. I’m always curious to hear people’s stories, especially those who are in a position that I admire. I’m excited to see the next Saint Laurent collection come the Spring shows!

“Vogue to Host Fall Conference with Star-Studded Designer Lineup” – Fashionista

Vogue Magazine is hosting a conference in October and no it doesn’t sound like that boring kind that your parents may have gotten sent to when you were a kid. They’ve managed to line up the best of the best in the industry as their speakers and have developed a one-day program at Milk Studios in Manhattan that seems like a genuinely interesting and valuable day to attend. Sounds great, until you see the price tag. A single ticket costs $3000. This is extremely prohibitive. I wonder how many companies will be willing to shell out this much for a ticket for employees and/or how many people will be willing to spend this much cash, personally, on such an event. The cost seems prohibitive. According to the Fashionista article, they will be releasing heavily discounted student tickets but I imagine even these will run for around $500. It’s a shame because when I first read about the event it seemed akin to the Vogue Festival which British Vogue hosted in London a few times. You could purchase tickets to individual talks for (I think) around 50 GBP (I don’t remember the exact price) and you had access to trend talks, styling sessions, and free manicures and hair & make-up. I initially thought this conference may have been a similar thing but evidently, it is not. Vogue is focused on professionals. I think it is sad that the cost is so high because the speakers are really amazing and I think the talks would be super valuable for people to hear, especially those who are trying to break into the industry. I’m waiting to hear what the student price is!

Standard
Fashion, Shopping

Designer Bags Worth Buying

A handbag is really important. So much so that people often pose the question of “are you a shoes or a bags girl?”. To answer it simply, I’m shoes. I’m crazy over them. I have way to many pairs in relation to how many feet I have and also how many occasions I have to wear them too (including a few really impractical ones that I cannot walk more than a few steps in). Bags, on the other hand, are different for me. I usually buy one and keep it until it is completely ruined – straps snapped, material worn, a misshapen mess. I also always have a bag that is way to big, purely because I like to carry a bottle of water with me everywhere I go. I could have some really nice looking smaller bags if only I’d sacrifice my water. Anyway, in the spirit of keeping bags for a long time, I view a high quality bag as an investment. Less likely to get worn out than shoes, a bag can last a lifetime if you treat it well and purchase a high quality one to begin with. I also feel like bags are less vulnerable to trends than shoes are so I’ve compiled a list of what I’d class as good investment bags (basically a bunch of designer bags that I wouldn’t say no to) that I think would actually be worth buying. See below for my picks where I’ve inserted links to the sites where possible:

Prada

I have two from Prada. The first is the nylon backpack – the item that made the brand famous (¬£705). I feel like this is just an iconic fashion item that would be worth buying if you could. It is functional yet still looks cool, especially if you’re going for a sports-luxe look. Alternatively, I suggest the saffiano tote (yes, the leather that every other designer has copied since) which is known for its durability due to scratches being virtually unable to show up (¬£1325). I’d probably just buy black in both of these styles.

Gucci

Although Gucci is going through a renaissance at the moment, the brand still sells some classic styles that I think can stand the test of time, regardless of the image that the brand is projecting at that current time. First I’d suggest the Soho Hobo (¬£1210). This is one that I style looks with on Polyvore all the time because it goes with so much. I really like the Rose Beige leather version but the black is just as nice. What makes it better is that it has a shoulder strap too which is always handy. If you want something a little more interesting, I really like the new Boston bag (¬£1030). The style is one which they’ve been making for years with the classic monogram print but they have also recently introduced (I think) a black leather style which I like. It has the stripes around the bag which make you realise it is Gucci yet it is a bit more low key than full on patterns.

Altuzarra 

Only making his accessories debut two seasons ago, Altuzarra is offering some really strong saddle bags in various colours. The Ghianda bag is the one I’d buy ($2995, exclusive to Barneys);¬†I’d opt for black just so I could get maximum use out of it and I think I’d go for the smaller size too. I like the braided strap and also the fact that this could perhaps be worn cross-body if you wanted to. I’ve been thinking about the cross-body look a lot more recently and I think I might try it out again. I haven’t worn a bag that way for years but I think given the right size it can look a lot better than just dangling off one shoulder. You just need to make sure that whatever you’re wearing on the top half isn’t too fussy.

Saint Laurent

I love Saint Laurent bags. They’re probably one of my¬†most used on Polyvore and I think I’d carry one every day if I could. I particularly like the matelasse styles with the YSL buckle. I think it looks really slick. There are three bags I like the best and they’re basically just the same one but in different sizes (¬£885, ¬£1680, and ¬£1590). I’d choose the Powder colour as it is such a pretty nude. Very versatile, non?

Givenchy

Although I like the bag, I feel that the Antigona has become a bit cliche and perhaps overexposed. For that reason I wouldn’t suggest that as a keep forever bag as it has become a trend piece. However, I love the Nightingale tote in all it’s slouchy goodness (¬£1245). I think it is one of those bags where you can stuff it full of everything you’d ever need to carry and it would still zip up. The calfskin is so soft too. It is just a really nice bag and I feel like I wouldn’t be afraid to carry this around with me in day-to-day life for fear of ruining because it already looks a little lived in when you buy it. Like fine wine and J.Lo, it can only get better with age.

Chanel

Instead of the classic quilted style that I used to dream about as a kid, I’ve really taken a liking to the Boy Bag recently. I think Nicki Minaj sporting one of every possible style has brought them to my attention and I’m now starting to think that the shape is rather interesting. You get it in a lot of different styles, changing every season, but I think to be safe (especially due to the price) I’d just buy a black one. At an eye-watering ¬£2710, it is far too much money to spend on something that risks being passe just a few months later.

 

 

Balenciaga

I don’t really like the infamous Motorcycle bags, they’re too 2000s for me. Iconic, yes, but to me they don’t feel very modern nor do they feel timeless. The image of the likes of Nicole Richie and Paris Hilton (my original heroines) carrying them is very much ingrained in my mind and I associate them with a very specific time period. However, I do really like the Papier A4 tote (¬£1345). I’ve chosen this black suede version too as I love suede so much (I’ve literally bought three different suede items this month). If you had to push me to buy a motorcycle bag, I’d take the City in suede too (¬£1035).

That’s my list then. A brand noticeably missing, to me, is Celine. The reason for this being that the bags are quite difficult to come across online. However, I do love the Tie tote and the Belt tote, and I like the Trio cross-body but having seen these in person I feel that they’re both impractical and quite a security risk (the outer sections are just popped on with metal studs so a pick-pocketer could easily just grab an entire section of your bag).

I really like the bags that Donatella showed on the catwalk this fashion week at Versace. It is a brand whose bags I usually ignore but I really liked a few that she showed. If I’d been making this list come March, one of them would’ve likely featured too.

Standard
Personal

New Year’s Resolutions: 2015 Edition

Making New¬†Year’s¬†resolutions is a tradition for people all around the world; breaking them is one too. Every year the same few are made by the millions: lose weight, eat healthier, spend less time on social media. And, obviously, every year they are broken – not just broken but completely forgotten and disregarded by about the 10th of January. I am no stranger to this concept and that is why this year I am writing them on here, as more of a visual record and proof that I have actually made them so that when I forget, I can look at this post. I don’t even recall what my resolution was last year, perhaps exercise more?, because I did nothing about it and made no effort to keep it up. This year, I’m not even going to bother with the common bullshit ones because, let’s face it, I’m not going to join a gym and I’m not a fan of all this clean living, vegetable juices crap: I’m all about the sugar. Instead of making resolutions, I’m going to make goals: things that I want to achieve, be it material or mental, that I feel would make me a happier/better person. And yes, I probably won’t stick to anything that I have posted here so please don’t hold it against me. This is merely an inspirational post, a way of me putting my thoughts to paper.. or internet? Let us begin.

Completely unrelated image: I just love Al Pacino, especially as Michael Corleone. Also, he looks like he is thinking. Maybe I can say that he is thinking of his future just like I am? (Mine, not his.)

Completely unrelated image: I just love Al Pacino, especially as Michael Corleone.
Also, he looks like he is thinking. Maybe I can say that he is thinking of his future just like I am? (Mine, not his.)

  1. Stop buying so much online – This is obvious. Online shopping doesn’t feel like real shopping. As you¬†click away and add things to your¬†virtual shopping trolley, the cost could be in Simolean (the currency of The Sims,¬†duuuuuuhhh)¬†for all you¬†care as no paper money is handed over¬†and until the parcel arrives at your door, none of it seems¬†existent. That is until you check your bank statement and realise you spent yet another ¬£60 on crap that you don’t need. With emails coming in daily from various websites enticing you with deals, it is nearly impossible to ignore them and not be sucked in by the perceived great discounts. But really, you’re not saving any money if you don’t need to spend it in the first place. Just click unsubscribe… you can do it.
  2. Say “yes” more often¬†– This is also obvious. It applies to so many situations but in this case I’m thinking more socially. Even if it’s 9pm and I’m already in my pyjamas, if I get invited out I plan to go. This year in particular will be tough with all of my friends going¬†to university and moving away to various parts of the country, therefore until then I need to make it my mission to see them all as much as possible. That way, when they actually move away, we’ll still have a strong friendship that can survive the distance, however long that is.
  3. Relax¬†– I am such an uptight person. I am always on the edge and am always thinking about a million different things. I feel like my brain is overflowing with ideas of things I need to do, say, buy, write, and so much more. Even on my¬†day off I am never really switched off. I genuinely have no idea how to. I feel like life is going at such a fast pace yet I feel entirely stuck in the same spot and that I am waiting forever for anything to happen. I need to just realise that at this age, there’s not really much that I can do hence why I need to relax a little bit. I’m unsure how I will do so as I seem to always have myriad worries and so much on my mind. Maybe to get it all out I should start writing things down? Or to relax take a long, hot bath? Meditate? I haven’t quite figured it out yet.
  4. Take a real holiday – Whenever I go abroad, I am always doing something. Last summer I went to Paris for a week and did a whistle-stop tour of all of the main attractions in just under 2 days and worked for 4. Earlier that year, when I went to London I had a packed itinerary and practically every trip I’ve taken before that has been filled with plans and things that must be done instead of just taking a real holiday. By a real holiday I mean one that provides me with time to relax, maybe lie down by the pool for a while, sightsee at a slow pace, not¬†trying to fit in every single thing to do in that place in a short period of time, having¬†a long lie in the morning even though that could be considered a waste of a day. My dream destination would be somewhere in the south of France, perhaps Nice or Cannes?, or somewhere in Italy (a place that I have always wanted to go). I just need to find somebody to go with and the time to actually do it.
  5. Buy one nice thing¬†– I want 2015 to be the year where I treat myself to something. I’m working now and although I’m trying to save up as much money as possible to go to college in the States, I feel that I should save up separate money to treat myself to something nice. Whether that be a pair of shoes (Ferragamo or Saint Laurent? Classic styles, of course), a bag (Prada would be the dream or this brilliant Givenchy bag which is also totally over-budget, or even this tote which is more of my price range), or even a really beautiful piece of ready-to-wear (probably Dolce & Gabbana as their brand¬†is¬†my ultimate aesthetic) – I’d say you should look at my Polyvore for a clearer indication of items that I like. If I save up around ¬£1000 to treat myself to something I know I will love for years to come, perhaps it would be worth the monetary cost: especially knowing that I had saved up to buy it myself.

There are so many more things that I want to do, things that I want to achieve, before the year is out but I feel like sharing them would perhaps jinx them. I know that the next few months ahead will be pretty challenging and risky (very much make-or-break), but hopefully by the summer I will have a clearer idea of what is going on. I suppose that is what life is all about, taking risks. If we didn’t, how would we ever learn?

So here is to hoping that 2015 is the best year yet. Hopefully it is the year that everything changes for the better. I don’t expect to be sitting front row at Chanel any time soon or rubbing shoulders with Riccardo Tisci (who is probably my favourite person on Instagram at the moment) but I do hope for more realistic things. I hope that fashion continues to inspire and bring joy to me and others; I hope that my favourite designers continue to produce exquisite collections and that I discover some new ones along the way; finally, I hope for self-improvement in many fields (mainly my writing though as it still not up to scratch).¬†May 2015 be a good year for me and, more importantly, a good year for all of you!

 

Standard
Essays, Fashion News, Opinion

Who Is Going to Gucci?

The¬†recent news of the departure of Frida Giannini and her husband, CEO, Patrizio di Marco from Gucci poses the question: who will replace them?¬†Or, more importantly, her? Now I, for one, don’t really care about who the new CEO is because that will not change anything for me: the CEO is very much behind the scenes with their impact on the designs practically non-existent. I do care about who will become the new creative director, however, even if the internet seems rather unfussed: google Gucci and the news of the departure of their¬†head designer¬†doesn’t even come up on the first page.

I am a Frida Giannini fan so when I found out that she was leaving I was saddened. However, I¬†often feel like I¬†stand alone in liking her as she is often heavily criticised online for reasons I am unsure of. I feel that in the past few seasons Gucci’s collections had really improved and were clothes that I would want to spend money on, if I had it… For the past few seasons Gucci’s campaigns have been some of my favourites, their clothes often the most copied and their business seemed to be reaching new heights with the introduction of the beauty line, something that Giannini was involved with. She doesn’t officially depart until after the Fall 2015 collection which will, like the previous few collections, likely be met with praise from the press. If you look at reviews from style.com, vogue.co.uk¬†and a few other publications the past few seasons have been viewed as largely positive. She has left citing personal reasons and I hope that she returns to fashion at some point in the future.

A lot of the criticism for Frida stemmed from the fact that she was not Tom Ford. A rather preposterous reason to dislike somebody, or their work more so, but this is fashion and that is how it works. She took over from Tom Ford in 2004 whose departure a hell of a lot of people are still not over. Frida’s Gucci woman was completely different from Mr Ford’s who is known for his sexed up designs and¬†that is one thing that she always had against her. Although fashion is rooted in continual change, an often unhealthy nostalgia for the past can be prominent. Another hurdle that Frida had to overcome was the world economic crisis that began in the late 2000s. If the entire world, pretty much, is in recession people naturally will have less money and the first thing that will go is luxuries. For that reason, many brands’ sales took a hit – Gucci included. Sales at Gucci have been stagnant for years. Where some brands have seen meteoric rises (like Hedi Slimane at Saint Laurent whose retail increase has been reported at 40% after his rebrand of YSL and 28% in the past year), Gucci has remained steady and in an industry where the only way is up, staying still is very much a negative. Some of the failure can be put down to Gucci’s heavily branded image, something that was very popular in the early 2000s but has diminished now. Luxury, nowadays, is understated. The joy doesn’t come in having a brand name or logo splashed all over a bag but by knowing that your bag is made of the finest leather by the most skilled workers: Gucci didn’t catch up with that.

Still, it is not a bad brand: for that reason alone it should be easy to get a new designer. However, it is choosing the new designer that will be the hardest part. Now obviously all of us on the internet are not involved with the inner workings of Gucci, we do not know what is going on. The brand released a statement saying that the new creative director has not yet been named and the uncertainty has just led to meaningless speculation, something that I am going to join in with. Now the name that is most commonly thrown around is Hedi Slimane, the previously mentioned creative director at Saint Laurent. In his short time back at Saint Laurent (he joined up again in 2012 after 4 years in the menswear division between 1996 and 2000 where he popularised the skinny suit) he has done a lot – perhaps an understatement? He has re-branded from Yves Saint Laurent to Saint Laurent Paris, a move that sparked much controversy and those god-awful “Ain’t Laurent Without Yves” t-shirts that caused him to pull the brand from Collette in Paris. However, even if you don’t like his change of name it is undeniable that is has had brilliant results for the brand business-wise. Sales have grown massively and continue to do so season upon season, he has grown a near cult-like following of people who will buy whatever he produces. It seems like a great idea for Gucci to hire him then, no? I mean, I know he is the most likely candidate for the job but in a way, I hope that he doesn’t get it: no ill feelings Hedi. My reason is not that I dislike him (because I do like him) but because I think he is doing great at Saint Laurent and think it would be a shame to see him go so quickly. I think it would be unnecessary for him to leave so quickly and at a brand that he has quickly made his own.¬†Furthermore, if he left Saint Laurent somebody would have to replace him there and I cannot think of anybody better for the job than him, he has made himself almost irreplaceable.

So if Hedi is not the man for the job, then who is? So many names have been thrown around that it is difficult to make sense of it all. If a creative director is poached from another brand then they need to be replaced, leading to a round of fashion musical chairs, or as Suzy Menkes put it, Candy Crush. Of course, it could be an internal hire. Gucci will have a strong design team in-house already so perhaps a promotion could be on the horizon? That seems unlikely however. I feel that they will be looking for an already established name to make a splash. Riccardo Tisci’s name has come up in conversation but that has quickly been shut down by the media citing his contract with LVMH as the main reason. (I like him there so I hope he stays.) Christopher Kane has been mentioned, mainly because he worked for Versus Versace for a while and Kering, Gucci’s owner, has a majority stake in his own brand.

My favourite name that has come up is Joseph Altuzarra, designer of the brand of the same last name. I am aware that these are all just rumours but I think he would be perfect for the brand, despite the fact that he is already creative director of his own brand. Now I don’t exactly love it when designers design for multiple brands at once (think Alexander Wang at his mainline, Balenciaga, T diffusion line and his new denim line) but sometimes it works. For example, Alexander Wang has produced stellar collections for all of his own lines and the Balenciaga brand since his appointment but you can’t help but wonder if it is too much for one person to do. You wonder how involved they really are, questioning if it is just their name on the line and their face at the end of the runway show or if they are actually hands-on at all of their jobs. Or think of Karl Lagerfeld who has simultaneously designed for Chanel and Fendi, amongst other projects for decades now. It often works, often doesn’t. Now I don’t want Altuzarra to overwork himself or stretch himself too thin, especially since his brand is a relatively new one, but I do think that Gucci would be a great brand for him to grow at. For one, he does that whole classy-sex-appeal thing very well, something that is key to Gucci’s brand. Secondly, he is a good designer and that has been noted by Kering who bought a stake in his company already. Altuzarra won the CFDA’s Womenswear Designer of the Year award this year and has received much critical acclaim, making Forbes’ 30 Under 30 list in the past.¬†Whatever happens, he has good investment in his brand, that much-needed talent and the means to grow – whether that is within Gucci or his own brand only time will tell.

We don’t find out who is going to be the new creative director until Gucci decides to reveal it to us so everything until then is pure speculation: enjoyable but slightly worthless. Will they do what is predicted and hire Hedi Slimane, a man who has transformed the Saint Laurent brand and could potentially do the same for Gucci? Or will they take a risk and hire a newer but known designer such as Joseph Altuzarra? Or will they shock us all and do an internal hire or even more surprising, hire an unknown, fresh-out-of-school designer? Only time will tell and until then it is all uncertain. What we do know for sure is that Frida Giannini is designing one last collection, Fall 2015, and we should enjoy it whilst we can. Until then, may the excitement of the unknown fuel the fashion fire.

Standard
Celebrity & Red Carpet

10 Looks From Spring 2015 Catwalks That Nicki Minaj Should Wear

After my near psychic experience with Nicki Minaj and her wearing of the Saint Laurent sequinned leopard print mini dress at the EMAs, I have appointed myself her unofficial stylist. Yes, a bit rich coming from a random person on the internet who has no relation to Nicki at all (although I did meet her that one time), but still it’s just a bit of fun. Nicki is the ultimate person when it comes to fashion just because she is brave. Nicki tries out anything when it comes to fashion, like really the most outrageous costumes are nothing to her. She has zero fear. It is because of this that she can be moulded into anything, fashion-wise. The most avant-garde designers cater to Nicki but everything she wears aren’t¬†always wild. Nicki does crazy, sexy, classic, fun: you name it and she suits it. Anyway, I am going to use this post to choose looks from the Spring 2015 runways that I think that Ms Minaj would wear well – whether it be on stage, to events or just in daily life. PS – Nicki, if you see this and choose to wear any of these looks, get in touch… Let me add this to my CV. Hahaha.

 

I’m going to cheat on my list, instead of just 10¬†looks I’m going to choose 10 designers (some may have multiple looks). Let us commence…

  1. ALEXANDER WANG –¬†Nicki is already a fan of Alexander Wang so it is pretty much a safe bet that she will wear some pieces from his collection. She has already been seen in one of the Stan Smith inspired white and green tennis dresses at the EMAs. She attended the Spring 2015 show, so she will definitely have already seen all of the looks, it just comes down to what ones she will actually want. I have chosen the two below because she typically favours shorter styles and I think the pleated skirts would create great movement.
  2. CHANEL –¬†I have chosen some looks from Chanel because it is a brand that has status and is synonymous with wealth. Nicki has name dropped Chanel in a couple of songs before so it is likely that she would be glad to wear the brand. I have chosen a two piece skirt and top coordinate, worn by Lindsey Wixson on the runway, because of its cropped style and matching print, something that Nicki is fond of. I also chose the cardigan look (leg warmers optional) worn by Gisele because it reminded me slightly of Nicki in the Dazed shoot wearing Marc Jacobs. The knitwear is sexy but in a subtle way. Finally, I chose the mirrored-style cocktail dress with the Chanel belt because of the sheer panels and the belt mainly.¬†
  3. DOLCE & GABBANA РDolce & Gabbana is one of my favourite brands, and a brand that I wish Nicki wore more often. The Sicilian glamour is something that I wish I could embody. First I chose the lacy cami top and bejewelled jeans ensemble because it was probably one of my favourite looks of this entire season. Secondly, I chose the black lace mini dress with the gold and jewels just because it is so beautiful and I can imagine Nicki looking brilliant in it. 
  4. BALMAIN –¬†A Nicki Minaj outfit list would be incomplete without Balmain being mentioned somewhere on the list. I didn’t actually see very much from this collection that I thought would be perfect but I thought that this dress was suitable. Nicki mentions Balmain in the song Anaconda¬†and wears the FW14 collection in the video. However, a new season means new looks and I am sure that Nicki will wear something from the collection. I have chosen this black and white dress.
  5. MOSCHINO – Back in 2010/2011 when Nicki first hit it big, she was famous for her Barbie image so Jeremy Scott’s collection for Moschino seems perfect for her. I mean, the image is much more toned down now, perhaps she has even retired the character? However, I felt that it would be sinful to pass over this collection.
  6. BALENCIAGA –¬†Designed by Alexander Wang, a Nicki favourite, Balenciaga seems like a clear choice. I chose this little back playsuit because I thought the sheer panels were fun and provided the right amount of coverage. I can imagine Nicki wearing this on stage to be honest as it affords her the room to move around and dance.¬†
  7. JEREMY SCOTT –¬†Nicki wore a lot of Jeremy Scott in the past (like say circa 2011) and was actually in an Adidas commercial with him. His designs are so wild and usually unwearable, but often there are a couple of pieces in there, that out of the show context, could actually¬†be worn. I chose this psychedelic print dress first because it is something that I can see her wearing (or has she already worn it?) and next I chose two looks which I intend to be worn together. First, a patchwork bomber jacket and secondly, the matching shorts. Underneath the bomber jacket I imagine her wearing a sheer lace black bodysuit.
  8. VERSACE –¬†Donatella’s woman is strong, sexy and confident. If Nicki Minaj doesn’t perfectly fit that description then who does? The pieces I chose from the Spring 2015 collection are quite varied. For example, the pink shorts suit is a little bit different from what she normally wears but I can imagine her looking great in it. Similarily, pink and red skirt and dress combination are a little different because of the asymmetric length of the skirt. Finally, the large grid mesh coordinates are a little more traditional Nicki and the aqua colour would look brilliant on her.
  9. DAVID KOMA –¬†I love David Koma, I have said this so many times and I will probably repeat it until I feel I have been sufficiently heard. Now, don’t quote me on this, but I don’t think that Nicki has worn David Koma before as he is a relatively new designer. I can’t remember ever seeing her in his designs anyway. I think some of his stuff is similar to Versace, or even the most recent Versus collection. His Spring 2015 collection was so strong that I struggled to whittle it down to just a select few. The ones that I have chosen are pieces that I think that Nicki would actually like herself and perhaps even choose.¬†
  10. ALBERTA FERRETTI –¬†I think if Nicki wore either of these outfits, she would look so pretty: because that’s what they are. These outfits are girly and feminine. I think she would be more likely to wear the crop top and shorts combo but I love the little strappy dress. I think it is stunning. I can imagine her in it and I kind of wish she would wear it. The colours in the dress would make her skin look radiant. Also, I hope she would wear the entire looks with the shoes included because really, the styling of the two are on point.

Now obviously there were many more looks that I could see her wearing but I don’t want this list to be too long. Two designers that she is very fond of, Alexander McQueen and Saint Laurent, were two that I didn’t find many outfits that I could see her in. For Saint Laurent, I think she would definitely wear this dress (linked). As for McQueen, often the clothes that people actually wear are a hell of a lot different than those seen on the runway. For that reason, I think it is important not to rule out an appearance in the brand. If any of my predictions are right, I will be very happy. If this list were anything to go by, I have Nicki dressed for all public appearances for the next few months. I enjoyed making this list, perhaps I shall make another one when the Fall 2015 collections are out? Let me know.

Standard
Celebrity & Red Carpet

Nicki Minaj was EMAzing

Nicki Minaj hosted the EMAs (European Music Awards) on 9th November, wearing a grand total of 10 outfits. The award show, intended to be about music but really ended up being more about the stars (it is an MTV production after all), honoured artists in various different categories and saw performances by a selection of artists including Ms Minaj¬†herself. But really, who cared about the music, or awards for that matter, when Nicki was hosting? She is a naturally funny, charismatic woman and, not to mention, stunning. Her outfits at the EMAs were probably the sole reason I kept watching, anticipating a change every time she emerged – and she didn’t disappoint.

I have managed to identify some of the looks that she has worn but others I am unsure of, they may be custom made? Here is a round up of everything that she wore, starting from the very beginning.

  1. Nicki opened the show wearing an sparkle encrusted bustier and a long, ruffled skirt made by Peter Hidalgo whom she has supported on many occasions before. She was suspended from the ceiling, showing off the length and intricate design of the actual skirt which was likely over twice as long as she is. 
  2. Secondly, she wore this beautiful red mini dress, which may be my favourite of the night. It was scalloped with pleated, shell like pieces of fabric to create a ruffled effect. She teamed it up with strappy red heels and a heart shaped cuff. Really, she looked radiant. I loved this. I haven’t yet found out the designer of this dress, so if anybody knows please tell me.
  3. Next up was a floor length black gown which clung to her body in all the right places and just oozed sex appeal. The entire top half was sheer with just a v shape of diamonds covering her up. And as for the dinosaur in the background, the theme of the show was time travel…nicki-minaj-ema-4-1415568930
  4. White hot in Roberto Cavalli, Nicki looked incredible a dress from his Spring 2015 collection, worn by Malaika Firth on the runway. The actual dress on the catwalk was a shade of brown, whereas Nicki’s was white but that is not irregular for colours to be changed for customers. She simply glowed in this look.
  5. The next time Nicki returned to the stage was to perform. Singing an old classic, Super Bass, a new smash, Anaconda and debuting a single off of her upcoming album, Nicki put on a good show. As always, there is lots of dancing and gyrating on the stage so she needed a costume to accomodate this. For her performance she wore a lace, full body catsuit, similar to many that she has worn in the past (which has been identified as from American Apparel but I think this one is slightly different).
    It was so hard to find a photo of this outfit, I apologise that it isn't a very good one

    It was so hard to find a photo of this outfit, I apologise that it isn’t a very good one

     

  6. After her performance, she returned in a geometric Gareth Pugh cape and dress, straight from his Spring 2015 collection (minus the wild headpiece). The print is a bit of an optical illusion so I’m not wild on it but it reminded me a little bit of what Nicki used to wear, when she was more wild and outrageous as opposed to just beautiful and sensual now. PS – the bob with bangs made a return, one of my least favourite Nicki hair styles. Overall, this look was a bit of a miss for me.
  7. Then there was a emerald green sparkling dress that was worn when she attempted to take a selfie more epic than Ellen’s infamous Oscar image. Unfortunately, the photo was¬†ruined¬†by the return of the giant dinosaur so we never really got a good look at it. It is actually mildly difficult to get an image of the dress so apologies for that (seriously, I can only find a gif).
  8. Then it was Alexander Wang’s Spring 2015 tennis dress that made an appearance (the one that is designed to look like a pair of Stan Smith trainers). Nicki wore it for a segment where she played golf because seemingly that is a very Scottish thing to do? Perhaps I have just missed that wave..
  9. Dazzling in Saint Laurent, which I have already posted about in a “Shopping Find” post, Nicki’s final presenting outfit of the night was one that you cannot forget. Covered in sequins to create a leopard print pattern with a risqu√© hemline, the dress was brilliant. Nicki has worn Saint Laurent often recently and she always manages to make it something completely different than on the runway. Hedi Slimane’s Saint Laurent girl is rock’n’roll, skinny and smoking (both literally and metaphorically) yet Nicki is the opposite. She is curvaceous and sexy and manages to transform Hedi’s girl into someone a hell of a lot more interesting and relatable on a wider scale.
  10. Last but not least, the after-show outfit. Nicki wore a black dress (which could also be a playsuit, I’m not 100% certain) and an oversized green brocade jacket. I didn’t love this look really, I think the dress/playsuit/whatever didn’t look very well made but that may just be the photos.

So that is it, although that seems like a bit of an understatement. 10 outfits in the space of 2 hours is a pretty big deal, especially since many of the outfits will have cost thousands of dollars a pop (the Saint Laurent dress is $15,900 retail). I guess Nicki doesn’t have to worry about cost-per-wear… Or maybe she was sent outfits/borrowed them for the show? Either way, she looked damn good and made the EMAs really a one woman show. Forget the awards, forget the performances: the truly memorable thing about this show was the host herself.

 

Most images were from mtv.com, style.com or various Google images searches.

Standard
Shopping

SHOPPING FIND OF THE WEEK: Saint Laurent VS Topshop

Topshop is a notorious copier but, paradoxically, a widely respected and loved brand in high street (fast) fashion. Here, as part of their glittery winter party wear collection, they have created a dress that looks all too similar to one designed by Hedi Slimane for Saint Laurent’s FW14 collection.

Left - Topshop, Right - Saint Laurent Paris

Left – Topshop, Right – Saint Laurent Paris

Left - on FW14 runway, Right - Nicki looking EMAzing

Left – on FW14 runway, Right – Nicki looking EMAzing

Now Topshop’s offering is slightly different. For one, the print is smaller. Secondly, instead of using sequins, the effect is created using a lurex fabric. Word of warning, the Topshop dress sheds glitter everywhere you go, literally puddles of it, so beware. But for a price of ¬£34 as opposed to Saint Laurent’s $15,900 the difference in quality is expected. However, if you’re looking for a fun dress for the party season, why not look to an inspired item with a lesser price tag?

You might think this dress is the one that Nicki Minaj wore to the 2014 VMAs back in August, and actually I thought the same when I first saw it, but in actual fact she wore a shorter, micro mini style which was worn by Edie Campbell on the catwalk months before. But, as I am writing this whilst watching the EMAs which she is hosting, as if by some crazy coincidence, she is wearing this exact dress! This is oddly exciting me just because woah, weird…… Do I now have psychic tendencies? So, now, you really can get Nicki Minaj’s look! (The original and the cheaper alternative..)

Left - on FW14 catwalk, Right - Nicki at VMAs in August

Left – on FW14 catwalk, Right – Nicki at VMAs in August

SHOP ONLINE

Topshop Р£34

Saint Laurent Р$15,900 (at mytheresa.com)

 

 

Standard
Fashion Week, Shows

Paris Fashion Week Highlights – Spring 2015

Oh Paris,¬†how I adore you. The grande dame of fashion, the pinnacle of style and elegance, and finally, home to what is widely regarded as the best of all the Fashion Weeks. It is here that everything comes to an end. After 3 long weeks of collections in New York, London and Milan (which in the end seem to just be the build up to the main event), we reach Paris. It is here that the biggest names, historically, showcase their work. What happens in Paris shapes fashion as we know it. This season is likely no different. Think of some past collections which have shown in Paris and have subsequently become iconic: Yves Saint Laurent’s Mondrian Collection, Christian Dior’s New Look, and Alexander McQueen’s Plato’s Atlantis (the show with the Armadillo heels) to name a few.

This season, I wouldn’t say I have seen any collections so far that I’d say are “iconic, go down in history as something to remember” collections but I have seen plenty that I liked. Upon reflection, I think we need another McQueen or Galliano type figure to inject some glamour and real wild creativity back into fashion. This is something that not only Paris would benefit from, but fashion in general. We need someone that does the very whimsical, avant garde thing: and does it well. Doing it well is key.

Anyhow, I want to talk about this seasons collections. I am sad that Fashion Month is now over but really, I am beyond excited for the designs to hit the stores, and hopefully trickle down into the high-street stores so that I can join in too. This season, there have been so many looks that I have loved and really got enthused by. And that is why I love fashion. It inspires, it excites and it inspirits me. Fashion doesn’t have to be complex, sometimes the most simple designs are the ones that I love the most. Even if you don’t¬†get¬†fashion – which often I don’t – you can still enjoy it. Observe and form your own opinions, even if everyone else hates what you love. Fashion is for the individual: embrace it.

Balenciaga

Alexander Wang has finally made it to Balenciaga. All of his work for the brand before this collection was good, but a little bit mediorce, nothing special. I’d say this show really marks his entrance. Everything was on point: the set, the casting, and, most importantly, the clothes. The actual runway was brilliant. Built with glass and featuring a grid-like pattern, the runway was lit up from below and had machines pumping out smoke: it looked like the models were walking above the clouds. There were sweeping duster coats and interesting takes on fishnet and mesh and I loved the ruched chiffon sleeves. The lines were sleek and the looks were strong. Out of the whole collection, there were only maybe 3 that I didn’t like. Now I’d say 3 out of 33 is a pretty good ratio to have.

Lanvin

Alber Elbaz got the casting of this show right. Faces I love like Amber Valletta and Olga Sherer walked, along with almost every big working model of the moment. You may think, why focus on the models and not the clothes? Well, that is not the point. Models make a show. Without the models to wear the clothes, they would be hanging lifeless. The models bring the clothes into motion and make them into things that we actually want to buy. That is exactly what happened with this collection anyway. It was a celebration of 125 years of Lanvin and was a collection almost exclusively full of dresses (there were some trousers and skirts in there too though). From the most simple jersey style dresses to the slip dresses and tiered-silk pieces, Alber got it right time and time again. It truly was a wonderful way to celebrate such a milestone.

Givenchy

This was a little bit of a confused effort from Tisci. It was like a mash-up of Balmain, Alaia, McQueen, a little bit of Prada & Tisci all in one. However, I still kind of liked it. I wish that there could be a Kardashian ban from fashion week though as really, I am sick to death of all the focus being on a celebrity as opposed to the actual fashion: ie. the archetypal purpose of the shows. I understand that Tisci is friends with them but jeeeeeez, give it a rest. Anyway, I don’t want to dwell too much on these people, I care more about the clothes. They were tough and sexy. The latticed jackets, strappy sandal-like high leg boots, short dresses and plunging necklines. All of the aforementioned worked together to create an attitude – the kind of attitude that can’t be faked. And really, that’s what I’d say Riccardo does best: he creates a cool attitute via the clothes, one that everyone wants to exude. I want to befriend him and maybe then I could be part of his cool Givenchy gang?

Balmain

I have spoke many times about how much I love Olivier. He really is perfect for Balmain, which is something that is undeniable whether you’d like to admit it or not. He does cool and sexy perfectly. This season, he dabbled a bit into an uncertain territory with an outfit that can only be called a breach of copyright laws – read about it at fashionista.com. It was a white suit that was very much alike one designed by Alexander McQueen at Givenchy back in the 90s. Honestly, it was pretty much identical, which was a bit of a disappointment as surely Olivier could create something new, no? That one outfit aside, it was a very strong collection. The stunning flowing chiffon was different than the usual overtly sexy that you would associate with Olivier’s Balmain; more sensual. The rest of the collection was more obviously Balmain. It was the usual shapes, styles etc, just with different colours and fabrics. However, this isn’t too much of an issue for me because when you see the details shots, the craftsmanship is at its finest. I can only hope to see these clothes on somebody other than Kim Kardashian though. There are so many other celebrities who could wear Balmain but it seems to always be Kim. That is why the collections seem so repetitive, not because they are but because they are always worn by the same woman.

Chanel

Karl Lagerfeld stirred up a lot of controversy with this collection. Well, less the clothes, more the message. Models chanted and held placards displaying feminist slogans. It was like a protest. Some people were annoyed over the timing, calling it insensitive as it coincided with the recent events in Hong Kong. Furthermore, people struggled to believe that Karl Lagerfeld, a man well known for criticising women and often their bodies, could be a feminist or even understand the concept. Karl claims his mother was a feminist and that is how he was exposed to it. I’d say the timing of the show could not be better. At a time when women’s rights are wavering (in the US, recently Republicans voted against Equal Pay for Women), it was important to raise awareness of the cause. Social, political and economic issues aside, this was a strong collection. I’d actually say that it is my favourite ready to wear Chanel collection in years. As usual, Karl showed a little over 80 looks. I’d say this was probably too many, as always, and maybe 20 out of the 80 could be edited out: Karl always has so many ideas but I think he needs someone to cut out a few unnecessary looks. In this collection, there were the expected tweed and boucl√© looks along with many shapes which we have already seen before, but really that is just sticking to the house DNA. There were also many looks which were new and fresh. The watercolour-type outfits were stunning, such a beautiful concept. Moreover, I adored the look that Liu Wen wore, the dress was probably the most wearably beautiful thing designed by Karl in years, and if I could get my hands on just one look from this collection it would be this one. Overall, it was just a really strong collection. Hopefully strong enough to silence the critics who always come for Karl. Yes, he is getting older and yes, he has been at this for years – probably longer than some of us have lived – but doesn’t that say something positive about him? He has longevity. Now say it with me, ¬†long live Lagerfeld.

And the rest…

Christian Dior is boring me a little bit now, hence my previous mention of Galliano and how I’d like him back. It’s just predictable and too alike from season to season.

Roland Mouret’s¬†use of colourblocking on this dress was brilliant and I found the neckline interesting.

I enjoyed¬†Barbara Bui‘s slouchy white suits and the embroidered mosaic-like pieces, especially this coat.

The high slits at Chalayan were daring yet looked effortless, examples x, y, z. Moreover, the sunglasses held on by a headscarf were a genius idea, I want to get my hands on this combination.

This jacket at Acne Studios was like a leather raincoat, very clever and will probably sell well.

The shape of this outfit at¬†Ellery reminded me slightly of Marc Jacobs‘ knitted looks from last season, except I liked this look better (mainly because of the fabric) – it is such a look to try; the flowing sleeves are stunning.

It was¬†Jean Paul Gaultier’s final ready-to-wear show and really, it was a good way to end. I loved the beauty pageant set-up, it was theatrical and creative: two words which define Jean Paul Gaultier.

Haider Ackermann¬†had a beautiful dusky colour palette. My favourite looks were these three: this¬†silk suit, this belted off-the-shoulder outfit (is it a playsuit or a dress?) & this all-white combination (although I’d change the shoes, the model seems to be stumbling).

I don’t usually get¬†Gareth Pugh, and maybe because his collection was just a presentation, not a show this time around, it became a little clearer to me? I loved this headpiece¬†(I’m not sure if it can be classed as a hat) and these two dresses – (x) (y).

I want to be a¬†Chloe girl: this collection confirmed that to me. The founder of the brand died in this past week which is a sad event but didn’t make the collection any less enjoyable.¬†It was dedicated to her and was, in fact, a wonderful collection in her memorial.

This cross-over top at Sonia Rykiel, worn by Malaika Firth was great, as was the entire outfit.

Saint Laurent was, as expected, classic Hedi Slimane. Nothing new but not necessarily bad, just the normal rocker vibe.

Elie Saab was different than usual, oddly sporty. I liked it. I kind of loved the collection overall. The colours were beautiful, especially the teal, and the clothes were so stunning. Whole collection linked here.

Emanuel Ungaro was brilliant. I loved these two dresses, they oozed glamour.

David Koma’s official fashion show debut for¬†Mugler¬†was, as I thought it would be, brilliant. I love David Koma; he can do little wrong in my eyes. I think he suits Mugler so well and the fact that he has been a lifelong fan of the brand really helps.

This season’s¬†Celine¬†collection was my favourite in so long. I especially loved the messy, fringed hem on this dress.

Miu Miu and Prada are becoming very similar. Yes, they are both designed by Miuccia so obviously the link is clear but there used to be a clear-cut definition between the two. I loved Miu Miu this season. There were many looks that I adored, especially this one; the colour of the coat is to die for.

Nicolas Ghesquiere’s second show for¬†Louis Vuitton wasn’t as good as his first, in my opinion, but still brilliant. I feel like he is really trying to create a LV Girl, a house DNA that is separate from just the trunks and monogrammed accessories. Full collection linked here.

Standard
Celebrity & Red Carpet

VMAs & The Emmys – Best Dressed

Ahh, MTV’s Video Music Awards are probably my favourite awards of the year. Not because I believe thereto be huge significance or meaning behind them, but mainly because the show is usually very entertaining. The artists performing really pull out all stops and put on a show that you cannot forget. So many of the biggest pop culture moments have happened at the VMAs. For example, Miley Cyrus & Robin Thicke’s unforgettable and crazily embarrassing gyrating extravaganza last year; Kanye West famously interrupting Taylor Swift, proclaiming Beyonce had the “best video of all time”; Madonna and Britney’s kiss; Lady Gaga’s meat dress; Rose McGowan’s revealing chain dress back in the 90s (which Amber Rose channelled this year). There have been so many.

This year’s VMAs were no different. I mean, yes, it was less controversial I think, but still hugely enjoyable. Beyonce’s whistle-stop tour of her “On The Run” show was incredible. It may have brought a tear to my eye, for reasons I don’t understand. Beyonce just has that power to make everybody and anybody love her, you can’t ignore how amazing she is. And when Jay-Z brought her daughter Blue Ivy on stage, it tied it all together and made it a moment you can’t forget. Especially as Beyonce announced her pregnancy to the world at the VMAs in 2011. It was a great performance and an amazing way to bring the show to a close.

The Emmys, on the other hand, is a much more tame affair. I don’t even know if the show is broadcast on the tv, if it is I have never watched it. I literally only pay attention to the red carpet looks and that is it. Well that’s what I do with most award shows anyway. All I know about the Emmys is that it honours television as opposed to music. So instead of me rambling on about what I do and don’t know, I’m going to do a little breakdown of the looks I liked the best from each awards show.

VMAs

Queen Bey in Nicolas Jebran, a Lebanese designer.

Queen Bey in Nicolas Jebran, a Lebanese designer.

Sarah Hyland from Modern Family in Kaufmanfranco.

Sarah Hyland from Modern Family in Kaufmanfranco.

Someone who I never thought would make it onto my best dressed - Miley Cyrus in matching black leather attire (designer unknown to me as of now).

Someone who I never thought would make it onto my best dressed – Miley Cyrus in matching black leather attire (designer unknown to me as of now).

This photo is purely for Kendall Jenner. I thought she looked great. She has an elegance that none of her other family members have. I didn't realise how short Kim was until I seen these photos lol. I'm not going to pass comment on Kim & Kylie because I don't want to spread negativity...

This photo is purely for Kendall Jenner. I thought she looked great. She has an elegance that none of her other family members seem to have. I didn’t realise how short Kim was until I seen these photos lol.¬†

Nicki Minaj in Saint Laurent. Her performing outfits were on point this year too, even with that wardrobe malfunction.

Nicki Minaj in Saint Laurent. Her performing outfits were on point this year too, even with that wardrobe malfunction.

Emmys

Taylor Schilling, from Orange is the New Black, in Zuhair Murad.

Taylor Schilling, from Orange is the New Black, in Zuhair Murad.

Sarah Hyland looking effortlessly cool. The full, formal skirt is balanced out by the strappy crop top, it's wonderful. She has made it on the list for both events.

Sarah Hyland looking cool. The full, formal skirt is balanced out by the strappy crop top, it’s wonderful. She has made it on the list for both events.

January Jones in Prabal Gurung.

January Jones in Prabal Gurung.

Kerry Washington in Prada.

Kerry Washington in Prada.

Michelle Dockery in Rosie Assoulin. I looooooove this dress.

Michelle Dockery in Rosie Assoulin. I looooooove this dress.

 

So there we go, that’s my best dressed list completed. Let me know if you agree with my choices or if there’s others you would have picked instead.

Standard