Friday, January 30, 2009

dinner at gingergrass

I was dyyyyyying for some pho this past week, and lucky for me Juan was easy to convince to join me. We drove past Pho Cafe on Sunset, and I decided it would be better to go to Gingergrass on Glendale Boulevard instead, because I was jonesing for one of their fancy mimosas. We both got the pho, and I got a delicious mimosa with blood orange and lychee while Juan got the most amazing drink ever: limeade mixed with - if I remember correctly - one of the cheapest Vietnamese beers out there. It was so tasty. Like a Corona with a sugary lime, and served on ice with a straw.

And this is what I wore today and out to dinner:

Old Navy striped t-shirt (I cut the hood off), J. Crew v-neck, Isabel Marant skirt, L'Autre Chose leopard flats.

I was channelling my inner French Girl, and added my leather jacket and a floral scarf when I went out. Can you tell I cut my own bangs the other day??? I think they might be a little out of control. Whoops.

margiela artisanal

Fighting some serious homesickness and unemployment blues...

Here is the amazing "fur" coat from Martin Margiela Artisanal collection, made out of the plastic things that attach the store tags.

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Wednesday, January 28, 2009

chanel haute couture

Karl Lagerfeld never ceases to amaze me. Especially when you realize that he thinks of EVERYTHING. No team of designers. Nothing. Just him.

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To me this collection was all about the head pieces, not so much about the clothes. They were all made of 8 1/2 x 11 inch paper by Kamu, a Japanese hairdresser. Who would have thought that he was so highly criticized when he presented his first Chanel Couture show?

I love Freja as the bride, BTW. It is so great that she is so butch, but so feminine, even though she is wearing pants.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

the king of couture: christian lacroix

I know not everyone will agree with the above statement, what with the existence of Mr. Lagerfeld and Mr. Galliano, but I stand by it.

Anyhooo, Lacroix was, by far the most fun of all the shows I got to see last year. I just feel like he has the concept down, and adds so much fun to it. It's not about the tweed suits for him, it's about the beauty of the fabrics and the embroidery, and keeping the artisans alive.

My fave looks from the show:

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He always references Spanish/South of France costumes, and bullfighters, and always has the most fabulous stockings, but the other things change with the season. Looks number 1 and 4 are my absolute faves, as well as the tights in look 2.

couture...i might just have to cry about it

It was a year ago that I had the life changing experience of going to the Couture shows in Paris. At this point, I had already experienced the stress and excitement of one RTW season and the less stressful and less exciting Men's season. Nothing could have prepared me for the fun and inspiring experience of the Couture season.

I had learned the ropes of what to wear to these things, and figured (correctly) that I needed to take it up a notch to evening/cocktail dresses for all hours of the day and to never say no to a glass of Champagne. Needless to say, I had SO much fun!

So, not only am I fighting crippling depression about being unemployed in a city that I finally have to admit that I really hate, it is couture week, and I'm not there.

Monday, January 26, 2009

that's what she said.

Anyone who considers Barney's the Mother Ship, as I do, knows what the inside of their dressing rooms look like. For those of us who can't afford the entire store, we stick to the Co-Op. It was maybe a year and a half or so ago, that all the Co-Op dressing room walls were covered in the funniest little silhouette portraits in a rainbow of colors with the best one-liners below them that described the person in the portrait. It turns out that these portraits are by the artist Carter Kustera.

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I was browsing the Jonathan Adler website, via, and saw you can custom order these portraits through the Jonathan Adler stores. Genius. That is all I can say about that.

Then I tried to think of the quotes I would put under my friends' and family's portraits. That definitely created a good hour of entertainment. Lucky for them, they all have much more attractive profiles than poor Andy from the above portrait.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

philippe starck louis (lou lou) chair

I was going through my new Domino: The Book of Decoration, which is basically every one of my favorite photo shoots from the magazine bound in a book with a decorating dictionary, when I saw the cutest/coolest chair. It was clear plastic with a tint of pink in a modern take on a classic french chair. When I showed it to my friend Juan, he said something along the lines of "Oh yeah, those are great. I cant remember who makes them, but they are super expensive." He wasn't kidding.

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Turns out the chair I was so lusting over was the Philippe Starck "Lou Lou" chair, the kids version of the very famous, and très cher "Louis" chair. I found both versions on the Hive Modern website, which happens to be a Portland store, that has been in the Pearl since before it was mainstream. I am seriously considering if the child's chair would work for adults, as it it $133 compared to the adult version that is $410! Eek!

pendleton teams with opening ceremony???

Who would have thought, right? Old school wool and blanket company Pendelton, from Oregon, is teaming up with boutique and design collaborator Opening Ceremony with a capsule collection for both men and women. I know hipsters have been hording vintage Pendelton shirts since the days when Rock-a-Billy was the hipster of choice. But as the hipsters keep taking over the world, they keep making more money - hence the progressively more expensive and fancy designer clothes.

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I'm not super into the girls looks - the skirts especially - but they do have an Isabel Marant-eqsue feeling to them, so I can't help but like them a little bit. I am loving the turquoise/blue plaid blazer that the dude is sporting, OMG so cute, I would wear it.

I did see a picture of some random and probably undeserving "it" girl sporting a small bag from the collection that definitely appealed to me though. I am also wondering if they will have some great coats, I can just imagine how cool they could be if done correctly. Big shawl collars, belted waist, and narrow sleeves in the turque plaid or the Indian blanket print...can't you see it???

fabruary vogue

I have not been American Vogue's biggest fan in the past few years, regularly devouring British Vogue while quickly flipping through their American counterpart, but I've noticed a big improvement recently. Maybe it has to do with that article "Why Vogue Sucks" (or something like that) by Cathy Horn, published in the New York Times.

February was a refreshing improvement - minus the fact that almost every article focused on the recession - full of pretty editorial and good clothes. The Steven Meisel shoot was him at his best, pretty girls in soft light, lounging around or acting silly.

Then there was the little feature with Agyness Deyn (who, I must admit, bugs the hell out of me - but maybe it's just her hair) and her fiance Albert Hammond Jr. of the Strokes (my absolute FAVORITE band). It was so cute and sweet; I wanted to barf with every new picture.

photo credit: vogue

As for the cover shoot and story, here is what I think. We all know that Blake Lively is gorgeous, seriously beautiful. But, how tired are you of seeing her as a pin-up/bombshell. We get it! She is curvy with beautiful blond hair; give us something different!

Monday, January 19, 2009

proenza schouler pre-fall

This is the last Pre-Fall posting, I swear. But, I had to write about Proenza Schouler, because I have an ongoing struggle with them, where my opinion is constantly changing. Then I saw how GOOD this collection was, and wished I hadn't posted half of the others that I did.

Since they started, I have always been slightly envious of their success and talent; I couldn't help thinking "GDMF!!!! Another Parson's Grad???" But, beyond my initial impression, I don't have a consistent opinion of them. These boys tend to switch back and forth from designing for the young, stylish girls that they surround themselves with to producing collections for the middle-aged Upper East Sider's who can afford their clothes. Just compare their bandage skirt collection from Spring 2007 to their following collection for Fall 2007. Since then, they seem to have found a middle ground that could appeal to both groups, or really the stylish 30 somethings that rule the fashion industry; this can be seen in their Fall 2008 collection.

As for THIS collection, it is once again designed for the Hot Young Things.

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There is something so VERY French about it. The layers of neutrals - mixing black, brown, white, navy and stripes is just SO very French - the slouchy chic, the black tights, the leather jackets. And those BOOTS. Especially those grey lace ups. What makes this collection thoroughly American, is the use of sparkle and shine, through the sequins and textured leather; it's that hi-low mix.

I basically want to be this woman. The slouchy, yet totally tailored clothes, the hot shoes and Hanne's hair is just perfection. I might just have to grow out my bangs. I would like think, this is how I dressed while living in Paris, and maybe that is why the collection appealed to me so much. It's got that Isabel Marant/Vanessa Bruno je ne sais quoi that I love so much.

Now, I must get off the computer and watch the inauguration. OMG!!!!!

Saturday, January 17, 2009

jan/feb paris vogue + calender

I was slightly panicked when I realized that I might have missed my chance to purchase the December/January issue of Paris Vogue, which always features a special edition calender full of all the newest models for the new year.

While I was still in Portland, I went to all 3 Rich's, and it was nowhere to be found. I went to a few different bookstores down here, with no more luck. Damn that Paris Vogue team that EVERYONE is obsessed with these days. As a last resort I went to one of the sidewalk newsstands, and of course, that is where I found it, right as the February issue is everywhere. PHEW! I was counting on that calender!

This year the photos were taken by Terry Richardson - normally not my favorite for his crotch shots of skinny, naked, American Apparel-esque girls smoking cigs - but this shot was fun. All pin-ups, garter belts, set hair and liquid eyeliner.

photo credit: Paris Vogue

As much as I am a super fan of Paris Vogue, the main issue was nothing to write home about, I was actually way more impressed with the February American Vogue (I know, right?). It was all dedicated to Princess Stephanie of Monaco. As I was not a conscious human being in the 80's and early 90's, she really doesn't mean much to me beyond being a Princess and the daughter of Grace Kelly. I will have to read one of the articles, and maybe I will care more...


I was thinking about studding up my Target stripper shoes, to make them look a little less like Shoes From Target, when I saw Rumi's post about her Converse. I was so excited to find my black on black Converse hi-tops in Paris for the same price as I would have paid in the States (Converse usually cost 80 Euros or so...) that I snatched them up. Once I had them, I found they were super hard to wear with pants - especially since black skinny jeans are my daily staple - that they made my legs and feet look like they were painted with black canvas. NOT cute. With tights, or leggings and dresses, they looked great. Anyway, I saw Rumi's Converse and thought that doing mine would be a good test run for my studding skills; canvas is much easy to work with than leather (or pleather).

The sneaks turned out great, though I totally ruined my right thumb nail in the process, it is still sore 2 days later.

Then, last night, I started my heels. I was channeling something Gucci-esque, or as Gucci as Target can get...

I can't decide if I should keep going or not. And please ignore the strange angle of the photos, I do not, in fact, have kankles.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

parisians do pre-fall

The French designers seem to stick to the winter-y side of Pre-Fall. That is probably because by the time September rolls through in Paris, the temperature has already plummeted to 45 degrees. The 2 collections worth mentioning are Alber Elbaz for Lanvin and Nicolas Ghesquiere for Balenciaga, obvs. Both houses are known for having some of the most expensive and intricate Ready-to-Wear collections, and as far as I'm concerned by FAR the most beautiful. From season to season, neither of them fail to inspire my imagination.

I absolutely love the editorial style of the Lanvin collection. And the sparkles, and that turquoise dress, and those boots...The New Look reference with look number 3 is beautiful. Elbaz always puts a quirky mix of Ladies Who Lunch and Pretty Young Thing into his collections, as seen with looks number 3 compared to number 6.

The pants and the 3 tone tights are pretty awesome in the Balenciaga group. The gorilla arm gloves are absolutely insane, but the fur vest is perfection.

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I'm so tired of Pre-Fall, I sort of want to barf. I mean, the Fall/Winter collections are being presented next month. WTF!??!!

bill cunningham

When I was in Paris, for my first season of Ready-to-Wear shows in October of 2007, I first noticed this rumpled old man, hunched over, walking around outside the most important shows with his REAL FILM camera, clicking away and causally chatting with the various fashion big wigs. I could not, for the life of me, figure out who this man was. He seemed to be everywhere and know everyone and everyone seemed to know him too. Finally, on one of the last days of fashion week, when my boss decided to take me to the Stella McCartney show, for which I was devastatingly not prepared and under dressed, this old man, with his camera said "Hello, how's the leg?" while we were exiting the madness at the Trocadero. Who is this man? I thought, how can he know about my bosses leg? Godfrey, always friendly, said "Oh hi Bill. The leg's fine, thanks."

It turns out, this funny old man, was none other than Bill Cunningham of the New York Times. The man behind years and years of street photography and the Sunday Styles feature On the Street. I've been looking at those pictures since I was very young, and they are some of the first swipe I started pulling.

I recently discovered these great Audio Slide Shows on the International Herald Tribune's website. You get to listen to Bill knowledgeably chatter away, he has been in the industry for over 50 years, about the various women and styles that he photographed with his camera that he "uses like a notebook".

Fashion Barometer

Riding High


They are a great way to pass 15 minutes. There are more of the fun Audio Slide Shows here.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

more pre-fall

For someone who spent 2 weeks stuck inside due to the unseasonably early snow storm, I really didn't hit up enough. I found that quite a few more New York and Italian designers presented Pre-Fall collections, including Rag & Bone, Diane Von Furstenburg, Missoni, Versace, Phi, Narciso Rogriguez and Zero + Maria Cornejo among others.

I find it really interesting to see the different interpretations of what Pre-Fall is by the different designers. Some designers produce somewhat incomplete outfits, with only 1 or 2 pieces and very few accessories, while others have 3-4 pieces and tons of accessories and resemble a more complete look. Also, some designers seem to cater more to later summer/early fall with bare arms and legs and full on sandals, and others have jackets and tights and hats and gloves...clearly catering to colder weather. Personally, I think there is a delicate balance to make a Pre-Fall collection successful. It has to work when the weather is still warm, but easily work throughout the coldest months.

There are 4 designers who I really think got it right:


Love the layering of the turtle neck t-shirts under the skimpy dresses...and obviously those patterned tights.


Diane Von Furstenburg

I love that this group is a little more airy and Summery while still applying to Fall.


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OMG. THOSE BOOTS!!!!! I love the bare leg peeking between the mini skirt and the boots.

The whole Pre-Fall thing really begs the question: In this economy, what is the point???