Saturday, February 27, 2010

Random Thoughts, Banksy's Dove, Christopher Bailey's Fall '10 Burberry Fashion Show

Banksy's lovely dove is clad in (dove) grey Kevlar and his sweet heart is in someone's laser beam. Can't miss. Sometimes you can't find your own cute not-really-Kevlar thing, the something that is so comfortable or so edgy that you love every body and don't spend a New York minute on the glib one, memories neatly stuffed in a place you could forget.  You wake up and everything is all right, no clouds in your coffee, no jumping dust things that aren't cute enough to be bunnies, not even burnt toast. But then ... things happen. An email that picks at you and there is no reason. You know, the one from someone that likes poking at you, someone glib and maybe not even one ugly word is in the email. But the malice jumps out and you lean back, surprised again that letters on a screen can rearrange themselves into emotions and memories. I have one of those who speaks nicely to telemarketers but somehow few others. You're in, you're out. Oh there are moments of emotional protestations  that make you wish for a fork to stab the cliches and fortune cookie sayings that are like saccharine let out of those small pink packets, the kind that clever children can stack up intricately and delicately and then they scream even more delightedly when the thing topples. Mail that requires attention immediately, maybe yesterday. You've run out of eye drops without preservatives and you're allergic to the other kind. The dogs and the cats are hissing and playing or maybe those friendly swats and chases are not part of detente. Even your hair has gone limp not mussed. This happens when you're in the midst of post-break-up or even post-divorce. War of the Roses has printed The End and there's no particular reason for leftover fundamental misery but it still can bite, albeit limply.

And then you breathe through it and it's over. That simple ... and the sun is out, humming birds on the job, your favorite blogs neatly delivered to your inbox.,,, and Loved DisneyRollerGirl's post about Louis Vuitton launching Mon Monogram, a service for selected items where you can add monograms or stripes and totally edge up your LV's. Oh, a dash of Karl Lagerfeld's Guide To Life ( and then to news, those old push and pulls out of sight, out of mind. Someone you know is hinting that they know the true identify of Fake Karl and you wish for great detective skills. Curiosity and cats ...

And then all fresh and piling up blog posts about Christopher Bailey's Fall '10 Burberry collection. Well, it was a very, very good season for so many. But this collection, I think, took Burberry to top of the fashion milieu and made every single buyer and press and blogger take notes of what they need. Well, me too. Rose Marie Bravo, who brought matched Christopher and Burberry, is a bit of legend herself. Along with another American, Dawn Mello. She pulled Tom Ford in and placed him at the head of Gucci. Mr. Ford's first men's collection brought unadulterated sex and mean to the staid albeit fine house of Gucci - black velvet jeans and black silk shirts that were a touch of sleek, modern sexuality. And the video ...

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Rodarte The Collection Fall'10

Kate and Laura's lovely collection. Heritage is the word of the season, used randomly to indicate something unique, something special and always hauntingly expensive. It's about as meaningful as throwing the word couture at an expensive designer collection. That confluence of hyperbole is simply Hello Glengarry Glen Ross. It's not true and it's not acceptable, in the same way that cologne is not perfume and cannot be dabbed behind your ears, at your throat. The things that the Mulleavy sisters create and coax into life, from visions and dreams and imagination, are Heritage, collectible, take your breath away pieces that could go straight from their Pasadena, California workrooms to the Victoria & Albert. Elaborate, eloquent, embellished, exquisite - more "e" words than the rest of the New York Fashion Week designers. This is what fashion is. This is what Heritage is.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

American Perfection ... Michael Kors Fall '10

You know what season this is. Or do you? I couldn't date it or even name the season. Well, I do know it's Winter White for Fall '10 and it's perfect. Perfectly cut, perfectly proportioned and perfectly, uniquely, wonderfully Best of American. And this kind of sexy sort of makes the slashes that you  do notice, the ones down to there and wide enough to see way too much "cheap"(a word my mother would have used, rolling her eyes, shaking her head and not being pleased about it at all.) There's an entire collection, all good.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Sophie Theallet Fall 2010

A collection for fall ... about lost girlhood memories, the first time you fall in love with a princess dress, and twirled around to watch your skirt follow you.

Well, yes. Sophie's elegant sensibilities remind, and then don't, of others ... Chanel, Vionnet, Lanvin. Stripped of excess but playful, like the prettiest, happiest girl
Publish Post
in the room. Ten years at Azzedine Alaia and Jean Paul Gaultier before that. Sophie's hand is not tentative.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Ohne Titel Fall '10

The leather obi, fitted long sleeved jackets and easy jodphur leggings. Love the earth tones, texture, rich girl fit. Alexa Adams and Flora Gill worked with netting not lace to feminine gone graceful and sexy; very serious leathers. Something beautiful ... edgy Victorian mourning and riding, best of indie.

Somewhere Over The Rainbow ... Marc Jacobs Fall '10

Purple Orchid, Chocolate Truffle, Woodbine, Oyster Gray, Lagoon, Black, Cream ... the colors of Fall '10, all soft and gentle fabrics.

Marc Jacobs and Robert Duffy ripped off the brown kraft paper to reveal models, beautiful natural girls - something about Kate Moss's easy style apparent in the Nars natural "next-day" make-up - waiting to step out of the "shipping crate." The walls stapled with cardboard ... a great, big shipping box. A flawless collection American style, easy chic. Things journalists said, "unjaded and fresh," "seeing shows like their's tonight makes me proud to do what I so ..." and "Marc Jacobs & Robert Duffy really kicked some fashion ass tonight" ending with "brilliant, dreamlike, exhilarating ..." Longer hemlines and more draping, lady purses to be hand carried and cocktail dressing. Beautiful and classic.

The show streamed live from their website.

Writing for, uh, Blood

Oh hell. I really am not that bloody, not angry - well not a ton angry. I seem to be more succinct in emails so ... )

Hasty is as hasty does and wtf is hasty pudding, sigh. Well yeah. Here I am loathing the world of bloggerati, my upper lip almost curled with picque and chagrin (of course excepting and; how does one get so fond of someone you've never met and yet ... I KNOW her aesthetic and so love it) and

It's a rather middle school thing "we are bloggers, seat us" and perhaps this moment is not about them, not a bit. The bloggerati have served a purpose, rather like a crisp grapefruit sorbet between courses. The world of fashion is also about business and most were slow to recognize that there's growth not shrinkage online. and are up 50% and selling globally in lots of languages and the conversion from real world boutiquery to ordering online, receiving a pretty box with return instructions in case it's not something you want to keep. All Saints boxes are so pretty and vintage/worldly/bespoke that I can't recycle them; they're taking up space under my desk with the dogs and plastic bins of silk flowers. and several other sites deliver online collections in jpegs, some in videos; Robert Duffy is the loveable gentleman of fashion whispering insider bits (not really, but he is gentle) for Marc Jacobs on twitter and bringing intimacy in 140 characters or less.

I want to sell a book and I am fuming, absolutely fuming that I must have a blog to point agents to - what, they can't read thirty-five double-spaced pages? Maybe I should one hundred forty character write a pithy, quirky, sexy, war, dominatrix, lose-weight-now post to get their attention.

After I closed my pink shop with a rose garden, a joke really as in "no one ever promised me a rose garden" (fine, I'll do it myself), I volunteered at Jackson's pre-school to help set-up a baseball caps for sale area for the fundraiser. It was at Henry Jaglom's house which made me smile. He'd come in every Christmas and spend quite a while selecting one Eric Javits black hat - always one Eric Javits black hat - with tulle and flowers, and would tell us stories. We adored him, and for him didn't care that he was a one-off. The p/r (public relations girl) for the event walked by me and threw over her shoulder a "no, no, do it that way, it'll be better." She turned to rearrange, look and smile at me. Some smile; baseball hats and I couldn't please her. No, it didn't hurt my feelings but it did let me know right then that without a platform, so to speak, one became wallflowerish and not really seen."

There's more but there always is. Clearly it's time to dump the coffee, walk Papa Bear, let Cheese Ball (I know, silly) sleep and shut the door on the kittens.

(art by Mr. Brainwash, presently showing in New York)

Fashion, Books, Agents, Truth, Dreams, Being Polite and Thank You

Sometimes someone will break all the rules and tell you the truth. You'd be lucky and maybe it would be one of the Big Moments in your life. It happens. I know it because .... it just happened to me.  My fingers are flying and the pot of coffee I just made will have to sit for a bit. 

I'm going to share a bit of an email, The Email (did I say thank you yet ... )

"Being polite is not fun. You have the ability to rant, rave and somehow tie in green pastures, leprechauns and fields of daisies ... all the while talking about an unknown land of Romania which has the largest prostitution ring in the world. Girls are stolen from the streets and shipped out as slaves. Then you talk about a white bag that is just incredible. It's not the bag* ... it's the writing that makes the bag.

Sad to say, no one gets anywhere in life by being nice all the time. You are writing what you think you should be saying. Don't. I would write a blog on why you have to have a blog instead of a thirty six page transcript. I think they would love it. You know why? Cause you're packing a set of balls ...

You can even mix Hollywood in it. I despise Hollywood but mix the snake and Jackson and your experiences in the mix. People love other people's drama. 

Write for blood. Tell it."

Wow. I get it, I'm grateful and yes. (*except the bag? it's the bag that's good, oh lyrical and joyous moment of finding perfection in a bag - nothing can take that away and it is oh so rare, not fond of IT bags that scream look at me. Oh please. Unless it's old and has patina and stories.)

The truth is I have to blog because (a) I really, really like a few other blogs. That seems a good and true a reason. Here they are ...,,

And (b) sending out with shaky fingers a book of little moments in fashion, needing to find an agent who could fall in love with the project and sell it. It's all flux right here right now. Is the book industry going to survive, is the ipad going to kill the kindle, will amazon trounce apple, will all the indie book stores (that we LOVE) close down, will everyone that wants to read just download something, will writers get advances (oh please) and .......  (oh new thought) do you need a reality show to sell a book?

So while I pleasantly wait, so to speak, I have had an alt life. Not unlike Anais Nin who did erotic little stories, not unlike Harrison Ford who did carpentry and not unlike every dentist who dreams of selling a screenplay, a painting, an invention. Day trading, which certainly has its own discipline and risk. To do it well, one must wake up in the black of night, step over sleeping dogs and try to think. It's fast and probably best suited, as I have been told, to twenty year old gamers who have no distractions. Well, I only have distractions and my experience with gaming is limited to driving a curly haired boy and his friends to EB Games and plunking down deposits because, sigh, these things sell out like black Manolo's.

Dreaming. You can dream if you're very lucky, reaching and reaching. The getting is all good, really it is. But it's the dreaming that makes you smile.

I love fashion, every single rickety staircase that might end up with a piece of someone else's dream. All work, craft, art, beauty, soul.

So, for now, fashion and trading, dogs under my desk and kittens on top. Detente ...

And were you as surprised as I was by how very, very good Ms. Beckham's collection was? How did that happen ...

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Yohji Yamamoto Y3 Fall '10

Yohji does large collections, always. Black, navy, grey, stripes ... mixed with a handful of plaids leggings and tights in hot pinks, peach, yellow ... of course the dark colors. Just easy sportswear, layered and many pieces blur work out wear with fashion. Lovely, thick, soft mufflers and tailored coats that somehow drape. The curious thing about today is that I'm not in New York (or Paris); well, of course I want to  be there, snow, cold and wind are fine. Fashion does require discipline and a good nature, even with an icy nose and fingers that are too cold to separate dollar bills. There are so many places on the 'net to look at entire collections, unedited; other places to look at the runway show on video. Running through the images, and quick "fashion buyer" edits; just as if I were picking through for a shop. There'll be changes in the way fashion is presented as windows are opened via the 'net and that will not go away. As Suzy Menkes said, you can't go back now. Well, I can't change too much; the "collection" of any designer is more than a shop, even a great big shop, can or should carry. Not so long ago, the designers collectively were quite afraid that copies would be shipped before they could. Out of fear, most houses discouraged most buyers to not take photos and expected orders to be written in the showroom. A hard way to balance a shop, a hard way to budget well. Slowly, slowly polaroids were allowed and a few designers passed out rough sketches with colors available; it was better than nothing but really not much more. Trunk shows and look books and the copies were delivered many times before designer collections. And really no one cared. Everyone was happy. Here we are today when almost all designers have opened websites, provide streaming video of the catwalk show and are considering how to reach the retail buyer in a more intimate (and profitable) manner. Yohji made me think of all this as he struggled with bankruptcy, along with Christian LaCroix - and one wonders how that can possibly be allowed. And yet with all that heaviness, he calmly dealt with it, not easy, never easy, and produced his collections. Maybe he slips into an alley for an occasional cigarette. Maybe ...

The top picture - the striped top and the black obi sash - I want every part of it. Sigh.

Band of Outsiders ... Cuddly Cosy Comfie Easy Peasy

The thing is ... these soft, cozy, easy clothes in gentle colors that are not named black, are wonderful and wearable. Serious Danskin (ok, Wolford black velvets) opaque tights and boots, even black Mary Jane Earth Shoes (I know, I know - confession: I have a pair and they are PRETTY and I love them) and maybe it's androgynous but not really. It's really she could borrow his and he could too and they'd both look better in line at Peet's coffee than everyone else. I LOVE these. It's a whole entire collection of good things gone easy, lots of boy and girl pieces. Oh and the backdrop ... the catwalk. The link ...

In New York ... Joseph Altuzzara

Joseph Altuzzara's third collection ... Fall 2010.  His reference points are of strength and fragility, luxurious fabrics, moody and romantic. Severe tailoring mixed with gentle sexuality; someone that understands women. Very grown up for a young designer that could have been easily quantified as punk or hipster; the mood is uptown and beautiful. Mr. Altuzzaea's background of interning with Marc Jacobs, Proenza Schouler and assistant at Givenchy shows in his easy sensibility and somehow reminds me of a younger Bill Blass; grown-up gorgeous and easy.  Red, very red ... and nothing '80's Republican at all. Easy ...

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Alexander McQueen so sad

Vogue editor Anna Wintour has issued a statement on the passing of Alexander McQueen:
"We are devastated to learn of the death of Alexander McQueen, one of the greatest talents of his generation. He brought a uniquely British sense of daring and aesthetic fearlessness to the global stage of fashion. In such a short career, Alexander McQueen’s influence was astonishing — from street style, to music culture and the world’s museums. His passing marks an insurmountable loss."

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Chris Wilder Falls The Night: Something Beautiful

Flower from Mr. Wilder's  Falls The Night exhibition at Kim Light/Lightbox, 2009.  

Kim's gallery had the expected white walls and refined lighting in the generous front space. Lights were dimmed to theater dark in another room with Mr. Wilder's luscious flowers  hanging on three of the walls.  I can't remember how they were framed. Light fluttered in the air in front of each luminous flower, and it was enough. The background might have been black silk velvet, almost shimmering in contract to the almost moist flowers. I love flowers but this one is different- maybe it's the most beautiful flower in the world. Well, I think it could be. Something about the light playing with the translucence of the petals, those delicate shadows and the spill of pure white light in sudden places, and the stamens are greedily reaching for more light. Not quite overblown and maybe this is perfection. More about Mr. Wilder.

Monday, February 8, 2010

Hanna Hartnell's Languid, Lovely Gowns

The window drew me in. Languid, bias cut silk dresses in the window, warm light spilling from a chandelier, antique honeyed wood panels ... irresistible. I parked and walked to an older building on a busy street, the kind of storefront that you stumble upon just sometimes, that you would expect on the narrow streets off the Boulevard Saint Germaine. The dresses are made in the workroom in the back.
Just another Something Beautiful ...

Dangerously Romantic Dressing from Eilis Boyle

For every cakewalk in stilettos and red toes on the red carpet short, tight, slashed to here or there hot dress and borrowed gems, there is another fantasy. Something classic, its edge is romantic even with its aesthetic that evokes Tilda Swinton or Cate Blanchett and is familiar in silent memories of ballet and flamenco, Nijinsky and Nuyerev.
Eilis blogs as the Silent Story Teller ...
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