Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Portland: Brief Bit of Fall


 
Just a quick visual to show how inexplicable the colors of fall can be. No photoshopping here, this tree is truly an almost fluorescent shade of red; startling enough that I have to stop every time I pass the window. If it weren’t in a neighbor’s yard I’d love to get a close-up of a leaf. 

My thoughts go out to all my readers who have either just been hammered by Sandy and are now mired in mud and water waiting for electricity or those who are bearing the brunt of the storm with snow and ice. It was a quick and unusual fall here (as in, it is 64˚ today) but with the reality of climate change sinking into all but the most impenetrable skulls ‘unusual’ may be a word we can no longer apply to the weather.

Friday, October 19, 2012

Fall Fashion 2012: Fantasy Shopping


Happy Friday! If, like me, this week has left you tired of reality then how about a quick trip of fantasy shopping? This fall was not one of my favorites but there were items that caught my eye. Below, are items I’d love to own but likely never will. Still it’s cold and rainy right now and looking at pretty clothes always makes me feel better.

 


From top left:
  1. Fur lined parka- no idea who makes it despite extensive research on my part but I LOVE it
  2. Tory Burch sequined dress $595- could be really cute dressed down with a white shirt underneath
  3. Tory Burch Mary Jane $425- kind of spring-y color combo but still adorable
  4. LK Bennett suede/patent pump- because cordovan is hot this fall and this is a sexy classic,
  5. Philospohy knit dress with jeweled collar $695- again, a soft neutral with a demure simple line but the jeweled collar means business,
  6.  Generation Love- wool w/apaca sleeves $178- this is just fun, a soft sweater with metallic sleeves. Could be worn with jeans or a leather skirt
  7. Asos belted coat $215- businesslike and love the defined waist 
  8. LK Bennett pump $315- OK, so this is the shoe that Princess Catherine wears almost constantly but it IS a great neutral and who wouldn't want to look as classy as she does? 
  9. Jewelry: Irene Neuwirth necklace and earrings, Mimi So necklace, J/Hadley ring- as so much of what I was drawn to is soft neutrals I thought these beautiful gemstone pieces in deep blue would be a perfect complement.
 
 
What’s caught your eye this fall?

Monday, October 8, 2012

Fall Fashion 2012: Taking on Men


Sorry to have been AWOL but returning to a job where I deal with the public for the first time in decades (handling their money, credit cards, merchandise) brought me the mother of all colds and so I’ve had to restrict myself to basic functions only: sleeping and working. I’m on the mend and adapting and am back with one of my favorite categories for fall—menswear for women. Because I’ve never had a lot of curves, spring and summer are always a tougher time of year for me. Concepts like ‘bare’ and ‘sheer’ and ‘short’ are harder to work with and I end up sticking with 'layering'. Imagine then, how happy I am when designers embrace suiting as an option. To me, it is ripe with possibilities, both in clothing and accessories and only an unimaginative mind views it as masculine. Women's wear takes the best of menswear concepts—impeccable tailoring to hide flaws, fine fabrics, and subtle embellishment to the next level and with a pop of color, an uber-high heel, or a big bow, makes it especially feminine. Here are some of the pieces I fell for. See anything you’d like?
 
 
Suits: Michael Kors scores with a classic herringbone tweed while Rodarte goes 40s broad shoulder in a gorgeous pumpkin orange. One of my favorites, Gucci turns suiting on its head with a luxe velvet smoking jacket and trousers- the epitome of elegance. Erdem takes a slim silhouette and explodes it in a purple and yellow tweed.
 
Accessories: Oxfords and patent slip-ons by AGL,burnt umber cigarette case purse by Givenchy. Absolute, to-die-for-I don't-care-if-I-have-nowhere-to-wear-them-I-must-own-now stiletto ankle boots with ribbed tights by Burberry Prorsum (seriously, I have to have these boots) and classic black driving gloves with pieced leather and patent purse by Bottega Veneta.

Monday, October 1, 2012

Fall Fashion 2012: What Went Wrong



For whatever reason, Fall 2012 was a difficult one for fashion designers. Enough so that pulling my ‘what-were-they-thinking’ picks was painfully easy. There are designers (ala Betsey Johnson, John Paul Gaultier)  that make their mark by presenting collections that are wildly out there and for that they’re recognized for putting on a show- which is all well and good. But when established designers present lines like these, that are clearly marked as READY. TO. WEAR, but are anything but, I have to cry foul.



 MaxMara- this one hurts because I have loved your edgy elegance for many seasons. I own pieces of your label, for goodness sake, and this is what you’re showing me? Especially, after last fall, which was a visual delight. A pinstripe jumper might have potential but not when it looks like a bolt of fabric wrapped around and fastened at the chest. And shin guards? Avant garde is one thing but ugly is another. Better yet, now you want me to believe that a camel mohair jumpsuit with CROPPED LEGS is going to look good? Really? It doesn’t even look good on the model! In both these cases some absolutely gorgeous fabric has been wasted.



 The theme for Givenchy’s collection was equestrian, which explains the militaristic cape, epaulets, and boots. Beyond that, this outfit is a train wreck. Not a single piece of it works. Dreadful.

Calvin Klein has been a champion of the female form for decades. Whether you liked him or not, his clothes were cut to flatter and they did. What happened here, I have no idea. This is only one example from a collection that was frumpy, boxy and shapeless—the antithesis of Calvin Klein. And please don’t tell me that it’s post-modern, deconstructed and all about the fabric because it’s a pantsuit and it is unflattering as hell. Very Mao’s China.



 I saved the best/worst for last. Marc Jacobs is a creative and talented man but I think the strain of designing three lines finally got to him. Louis Vuitton is restrained and minimalist and it looks to me that as soon as he finished that line, he barfed Willy Wonka’s chocolate factory all over the runway at his own show. There is no other explanation. Funhouse fur hats, out-sized glittery pilgrim shoes, padded hips, and cropped pants…the list of offenses is almost unending. This is not fashion and it is certainly not anything that will ever translate to ready-to-wear. Almost feel as if he’s making the case for an ‘exhaustion break’.
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