30 August 2007

ciné(screen): the awful truth

The Awful Truth is a 1937 screwball comedy starring Irene Dunne and Cary Grant. Dunne and Grant play a soon-to-be-divorced couple, who jealously take turns trying to ruin either others chance of finding another partner. The above picture is a still of when Dunne makes her first appearance in the film. The dress is a beautiful sparkling floor length gown, unfortunately I cannot tell what color it is though since it is a B&W movie...

She walks in with her French voice teacher after having car troubles and spending the night out with him. If I gave my boyfriend that excuse, in that dress he would look at me like that too....

If you are a Cary Grant fan, this movie is the first to show his comedic persona that he is known for. Dunne has some other pretty interesting ensembles...watch out for very interesting feather hat - Isabella Blow style.

28 August 2007

idle(prattle): buying shoes

Sales Associate: Did you find everything alright?
Me: Yes.
SA: Would you like to sign-up for...blah, blah, blah...discount card...blah, blah, blah...free...blah, blah, blah...save an extra 20% today
M: Sure, what do I have to do?
SA: Just fill out this form
M: Okay
SA: Those are cute shoes
M: Thanks [filling out form]
SA: There are a lot of weird shoes....
M: [pretending not to hear her...filling out form]
SA: ...especially those with the toes out
M: [still filling out form. what, blood type?....processing what she just said] Huh? Do you mean peep toe shoes?
SA: Yeah! I think it is weird to have your toe out like that. Ugly!
M: [finally finished form & handing it to her] You mean shoes like these? [picking up the "cute" shoes]
SA: [awkward moment] ooooooh, I didn't see that part...
M: [weirdo]

24 August 2007

mag(rac): forty something

Roberto Cavalli sequined silk taffeta dress
Etro rings
Yves Saint Laurent clutch
Fogal hosiery
Louis Vuitton shoes

I love a good photo spread, so before the BIG BOOKS come out in September I wanted to post one of my favourite for this month. While everyone is gushing over the posh + becks W Magazine spread, I flipped back to the spread before - "Forty Something," photographed by Michael Thompson and styled by Karl Templer. The theme is "forties film noir with a dash of seventies divine decadence." The photography is beautiful, even being so minimal.

Escada silk chiffon blouse
TSE cashmere turtleneck
Marc Jacobs hat
Patricia von Musulin earrings
Fallon ring
Missoni bracelet

Dior silk satin blouse and skirt, by John Galliano
Helen Kaminski hat
Dior gloves and belt
Etro bracelet and ring
Yves Saint Laurent clutch
Wolford hosiery
Marc Jacobs shoes

Gucci silk dress with crystals
De Grisogono earrings
Gucci gloves, cuff and shoes
David Webb ring

Yves Saint Laurent wool coat and silk crepe shirt
Giambattista Valli hat
Echo scarf
Sermoneta gloves
M&J Savitt bracelet
Patricia von Musulin ring
Yves Saint Laurent clutch and shoes
Stockingirl hosiery

Louis Vuitton wool jacket and skirt
Marc Jacobs hat
M&J Savitt earrings
Louis Vuitton belt and bag
Robert Lee Morris bracelet
Carolina Amato gloves

Brioni wool dress
M&J Savitt bracelet and ring
Fendi belt.

Hair by Serge Normant for Serge Normant at John Frieda Salon; hair color by Gina Gilbert for Serge Normant at John Frieda Salon; makeup by Marc Carrasquillo; manicures by Deborah Lippmann for LippmannCollection.com at The Wall Group. Set design by Randall Peacock / Magnet NY. Models: Alana Zimmer / Supreme; Irina Kulikova and Anna Maria Urazhevskaya, both at IMG; Olga Sherrer / One Model Management.

photos taken from the August 2007 W Magazine

22 August 2007

love(notes): gucci

This is the Gucci Dahlia High Heel Platform Mary Jane. Let's get the formalities out of the way:

Dahlia 4¼" high heel platform Mary Jane pump in grey leather. Also available in black leather. Made in Italy.

Don't let the sweet Mary Jane strap fool you, it has a metal plate on the toe. The Dahlia can be pre-order at Saks for $795, although there is a limit of three per person every thirty days due to the high demand. Hmm...

20 August 2007

front(lines): central department store

I don't know quite what to say about this. It reminds me of the mock debate I had in school about whether companies advertising directly to kids are committing a moral wrong. I had to defend the business position so I argued it was the role of parents to teach their children about the difference between reality and advertising. But seriously...sometimes I can't tell the difference.

The billboard above is dedicated to school year preparations in Moscow and has a little girl getting ready for school, while talking to her old toys. She says,
‘I’m going to school! Now I think only of frocks and frills and don’t need you, two losers! Daddy, if you love me, buy me shoes, a dress and a hat! Dolce & Gabbana, Armani and Prada!’ 
Recently, visitors of the shop featuring the billboard noticed that all the word by the characters were taped up. The Russian Advertisement Investigation Department is investigating the billboard.

17 August 2007

style(hunt): mary janes

Mary Janes hold a warm spot in my heart. They remind me of being a little girl and parading my first pair of heels. I thought I was sooo grown then. I haven't worn Mary Janes in awhile because I grew out of the chunky heel. However, for the fall they are here with a skinny heel (hooray!) I found a couple at Net-A-Porter (high end) and then a pair at Target (low end). All cute, but some how the more expensive look better, why is that?

Ninette leather pumps, Pedro Garcia ($340)

Black Mary Jane leather pumps with a 100mm heel. Pedro Garcia shoes have a pointed toe and a buckle fastening strap across arch.

Super Wallis platform pumps, Christian Louboutin ($720)

Black leather Mary Jane-style pumps with a dark brown 120mm heel and a 20mm platform. Christian Louboutin shoes have a stud fastening strap across arch and a signature red sole.

Regal Pumps, Rupert Sanderson ($595)

Black patent leather Mary-Jane pumps, approximately 105mm high. Rupert Sanderson pumps have an almond shaped toe, a silver buckle, stiletto heel and cream lining.

Patent leather Mary Janes, Miu Miu ($430)

Black patent leather Mary Jane style shoes with double buckle-fastening straps. Miu Miu shoes have a round-toe and are approximately 100mm high with a hidden 20mm platform.

Black Skyler Patent Mary Jane Pump, Xhilaration ($19.99)

Black Embellished with Button Accents. Faux Patent Leather Upper with Thermoplastic Rubber Outsoles. 2.75" High Heel. Features Slip On Styling

10 August 2007

biblio(file): jacques helleu and chanel

Jacques Helleu joined the house of Chanel at the age of eighteen and served as its artistic director for over 40 years. Helleu was the driving force behind the house's bold commercials and print ads created by  photographer Helmut Newton and director Baz Luhrman, for example, and featured the likes of  Catherine Deneuve, Nicole Kidman, Kate Moss and Keira Knightley. It is safe to say that Helleu helped establish Chanel as a key brand name in the modern consumer market.

The first section is a biography of sorts about Jacques Helleu and then the rest of the book is literally an A - Z pictorial of people, places and things associated with Chanel. It is a very interesting concept, however, I would have preferred more than a sentence or two for each description. It is filled with such great photography but I was kind of left wanting more details. It was like walking through a museum and reading the little the art labels - very brief.

Overall, it is a gorgeous and quite heavy - 9.4 pounds! The Amazon.com picture above is a little misleading; it actually comes in a black holder (pictured) and the book itself is white. Yes, I wish there were essays beside every single photo but at the end of the day I guess that would have taken away from the overall 280-page aesthetic and it probably would not be as inspiring.

photo cred: amazon.com

09 August 2007

front(lines): istithmar wins barneys battle

And we have a winner! This all reminds me of the ebay auction I lost the other day. My only satisfaction was that the winner had to pay $13.51 more.

From WWD:

Istithmar has won the bidding for Barneys New York following the decision Thursday by Fast Retailing Co. Ltd. of Japan to drop out.The Dubai-based Istithmar is paying Jones Apparel Group, Barneys' parent, $942.3 million in the all-cash deal. It inked the initial deal with Jones in June for $825 million, but then Fast stepped in and a bidding war ensued.

08 August 2007

brief(critique): limited editions

Yesterday I got this article from WWD in my email - Fashion Brands Use Scarcity as Strategy With Limited Editions and then I stumbled upon this one from London Financial Times - Get it While You Can. My first thoughts based on the titles alone - "duh" and "move out of my way lady!" respectively. There seems to have been a greater increase of 'limited edition' items to hit the market recently. This is a great strategy for a quick boost in brand recognition and possible revenue, but too much of good thing can become tiresome.

I find this topic interesting both from the marketing side and as a consumer. On the first level I am a marketer's dream -- just dangle some shiny object in front of me long enough to distract me from my wallet. But on the second level, once I get the emotion of 'I want that!' I go in to marketing mode, dissecting what did this brand do to make me crave that item so much? It it heavily psychological, and it is not too hard to figure out that the whole idea of rolling out limited edition products is brilliant. You have a once in a lifetime opportunity to own something that only 500 or 10,000 or 200,000 people on the planet will ever get to take home as their own. Who doesn't want to be part the special club, proudly wearing your badge of honor? Especially if there is a great story to go along with it of how you waited in line for seven hours, in the rain, without any guarantee that you were holding one of the golden numbers à la Willy Wonky style. Limited editions = status symbol. Unfortunately, there are two problems for the buyer.

First, it is easy to get caught up in the hype that is swirling around and one does not necessarily take the time to answer the question if they will ever use or wear the item. Sometimes it is more about the experience of attaining something everyone else wants. But what if the appeal really is not as high as you thought; sometimes you have to ask yourself "am I really this lucky or is this just junk?" And what if it is really popular; this opens the door for competing brands and knock-offs. Your once celebrated limited edition is now one of many.

Secondly, since premium or luxury editions cannot be replaced because by definition limited, you become more hesitate to wear it out. There is a man in the FT article who says that he wears his limited edition trainers all the time. I don't know about you, but I have to qualify each event I take one of my limited edition handbags to...no smoking, not overcrowded, limited food & drinks, etc. Okay maybe that is stretching it, but you know what I mean. There are specific places and times where you know certain things are not going to be respected (ex., rainy days).  Being hypersensitive about messing it up somehow ruins the whole enjoyment. Add this to the fact that some limited edition items are very trendy or quickly become dated. So your brand new status symbol becomes less of a symbol and more of a target.

The WWD article takes the view point of fashion as art. Not entirely just about the artistic value but as a collector. Sometimes I think I am like this, getting satisfaction by simply opening my closet. There are things I am totally happy about and don't hesitate to pull out and wear. There are others that I cringe about wondering what was I thinking when I bought that...anyone want to buy a lime green trucker's hat?

03 August 2007

love(notes): celine fall 07

Champagne double faced cashmere wool cape coat
Satin hat
Satin smoking scarf
Lambskin driving gloves
Nappa 95mm platform thigh boot

Black double faced cashmere and wool tunic jacket
Black shiny leather slim pants
Tweed hat
Lambskin driving gloves
Lirine Fermoir Large Nappa bag in black shiny lambskin
Smooth calfskin 95mm laced platform ankle boot

from thestylemusings.com
photos provided by style.com and celine
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