Wednesday, 13 March 2013

A lesson in lovely...

When I grow up I want to be a Parisian. Or a fashion editor draped in it all. London collections are the aesthetic epitomy of me having a wild time in Harrods, and I often aspire to be as edgy as some of the collections it produces. 

The collections offered up at Paris Fashion Week represent how I want to look when I am a bit older, a bit richer and a little bit more fabulous....

First up is Chloé. Claire Waight Keller has come from Pringle and is quite rightly carrying on Phoebe Philo's legacy at the house. That legacy is of easy, polished chic, and not only that but she has created some fabuloius ways to celebrate the anniversary of the house. Last year there was the exhibition celebrating Gaby Aghion's house. Secondly she has re-issued some of the house's most iconic designs for all to get their hands on if you missed it the first time. This season she has basically created a collection epitomising how we should all look during the winter months. I would personally like some polkadot lace, a wool pinafore dress and the navy cape. With Chloé on the shop floors nobody has an excuse to look crap, you could buy the whole lot and look fabulous in any combination.

Next up in my list of highlights is Dior. I have been a Raf fan for many a year, especially in his own mens wear and at Jil Sander, with his appointment at Dior Raf has proved he is no one trick pony. Oh no! He has revived new life into the brand and brought his minmal aesthetic to a new market, and it works beautifully. This season he has managed to make monochrome far from dull, and with his re-working of the Bar jacket and the simplicity of the New Look era dressing simply feels fresh and cool in many respects. He has kept the womanly and chic silhouettes of Dior yesteryear, but updated them with his well known minimal approach. Add to this his innovative use of fabrics and cut and this is a very modern Dior woman he is designing for. And it works. In a few short season LVMH their owner company have noted that couture sales (a diviosion famous for its lack of commerciality and sales) have seen a 24% increase since he took over. After the shock departure of Galliano, and a wobbly moment under Bill Gaytten many were unsure about the future, but BOY DONE GOOD!

I am currently obsessed with Kenzo. Since Humberto Leon and Carol Kim (of Opening Ceremony fabulosity) took over a few seasons ago as Creative Directors the brand has become to "go-to" for hipsters and fashion editors alike. The price point ain't too bad and they are bashing out cute tees, sweaters and little knick knacks that make it accessible to many, as well as cooler separates and gowns in more luxurious fabrics. This collection appeared to be a mixture of eye symbols and the East. I smell a mixture of Evil Eyes and the Illuminati. I may just be reading into things. I actually don't care, I bloody loved the lot. I would like a round shouldered cropped jacket and a crazy matching shirt-and-trouser look too. Oh and I want a sweater too. Humberto and Carol have managed to make Kenzo as covetable as Opening Ceremony, making it cool in ways that you can't quite put your finger on. And that make you pass over your credit card. FAST. Call them what you want, but Humberto and Carol know how to make something cool.  

Now all I have to do is move to Paris and get me some show tickets...

Monday, 11 March 2013

A letter to Phoebe...

Dear Phoebe Philo,

For many a year I have coveted you and your design prowess, I have admired from afar as you took on the helm at Chloe and made it one of the go see shows of Paris, and created a look that shaped the modern woman. And inspired a trillion high street knock offs. Oh and single handed
You helped make Zara fabulous, because it is clear their collections are an ode to you and your woman.

Since you floated off and came back to revive the fledgling fashion house that is Céline, you have done nothing but make me love you all the more. I never knew that I could become as obsessed with a brand, or look, than I have with yours. I covet every piece, collections and handbag. Oh the bags!! If I had a trillion pounds I could spend it all on your bags. You are a genius. A total god.

I never knew that I could want to dress in such a chic, simple and downright minimal way, you have inspired me to strip things back and make my look so much more streamlined. Cool. In a weird, and androgynous man repelling way. You have influenced me to dress only for me and no other, when I slip on my blouses and skinny trousers I do it please myself and other Céline addicts. I don't care if I look a bit odd or boring. Boyish even. I am just happy.

I love that you have inspired to be much more ladylike, and sleek. Not to make too much of a crazy bag lady impact. This makes me happy. I like me and feel much more fabulous and confident. I love that you have made me realise if I want to wear furry shoes and coats that appear to be made of laundry shoppers. I can. And I can do it with such conviction that other folk will think it's fine too. I want the fur dress, the green hairy coat, and the mannish coats that may well make me look short and fat but I still want them. I will covet them. I know I will feel like a slinky Wonder Woman. I will feel chic and French. I owe all of this to you.

I love you. Thanks Phoebe.

Much love a dear fan. X


Friday, 8 March 2013

Master of us all

That is what Monsieur Dior once said about the late Couturier Cristobal Balenciaga, in reference to his standing in the age old haute couture world of yesteryear. This says much about the renaissance that is currently shaking up Paris Fashion Week, you see there is a batch of younger talent taking over the biggest houses in the city and it is only having a positive impact.

Alexander Wang was appointed the new Creative Director of Balenciaga earlier this year, and I suspect from the show that he has produced he may be feeling tentative, nervous even, about the appointment. I guess it is no secret that folk have been curious about what he would bring to the table, how he would take on the legacy of one of the, if not THE, greatest couturiers that the past century has seen. For me I felt that he has represented the house beautifully, albeit safely. He used analogies of marble, and that of breaking marble to reference the young breaking through from the old, and a new era taking over not only this house but Dior, Carven and god knows how many others. From what I have read there have been rumblings of slight feelings of the boring about Wang's offering, but I personally felt it was a fitting reference to the house and its founder. He referenced the silhouettes that Cristobal himself became renowned for, there were puffs, rounded shoulders, sharp wispy waists and an innovative use of fabrics all that the house's founder was greatly credited for. What it lacked in impact and grandeur, the collection more than made up for with style, class and wearability. Wang may not have made a huge statement with his first collection, but give the boy a chance. He has hinted here that he is here for the long haul, he wants to grow, develop and carve his own niche out. What Ghesquiere left behind, Wang will most definitely pick up and bring his own aesthetic and creativity to the plate. His predecessor revived a house so steeped in history some were too scared to tackle the legacy but Nicolas did it beautifully. He brought the house into the new century and helped carve a new look... Wang will pick up from here beautifully, and I believe he is more than capable of carrying Balenciaga further and proving that he is one of the new masters. Ready to carry Paris and some of its most esteemed couture hoses into a new age. This is nothing but exciting. Here is to the new masters of us all.


- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Thursday, 7 March 2013

And so to bed...

Oh Marcy Marc!!! How my heart beats for you and your Louis Vuitton collections... They are usually the sign of a season that is to come, and if Marc Jacobs has his own way we will all be dressing for bed, and not in a saggy pyjamas and dressing gown way either. The collection that was shown at Louis Vuitton this Paris Fashion Week was the coolest way to wear what's for bed in the day, there were negligées draped in fur and two pieces made of crocodile. There were lashings of the most sumptuous of fabrics... velvet, silks and fur. There were cute little ditsy florals and the finest of lace, that hung in such a slinky way. I know you aren't meant to dress like you are slinking from hotel room to bar publicly, but this Louis Vuitton show has made me want to. I want to act like a wanton sex goddess, one that is aware of her very fabulous and very sexual being. I want to do it in fur. 

Long live King Marc! May he forever influence all that we wear... Even if that is glorified, overpriced pyjamas... Sorry if I haven't written much, I'm busy working out how I can make wearing my pyjamas in chilly old Manchester. Without being sectioned. 

Wednesday, 6 March 2013

Happy to Help...

In my eyes Alber Elbaz is a cute little bow-tied god. After ten years at the helm of Jeanne Lanvin's house you'd think that things could have got stale, or he would have become predictable with his aesthetic. Think again! After ten years, like a fine wine or a fancy cheese Alber has only got better with age, and as each collection saunters along it just gets more fabulous. Don't get me wrong there is a definitive aesthetic, and there is definitely a Lanvin "woman" (she can only be described this way, 'girl' doesn't even cover the pure allure of the look) and she dresses to kill, thrill and generally make men weep.

This season the models paraded sultry and beautifully cut pieces (mostly dresses as always from Alber) in lashings of nude and black. There was draping, corsetry and hints of buttery soft leather trimming pieces. Even the fur was sexy. The coolest part of the collection was definitely the necklaces, I loved the loopy gold scrawling of "Help" and "Happy" and of course "Cool" that swung from the necks of the Lanvin women. They needed anything but help. They are all so damn fabulous I think it is the men they drag home of an evening that might need help after an evening with a Lanvin lady. The dresses hung off the bodies of the models perfectly, adept at making any woman of any shape look utterly fabulous.