I was a bit worried about the colours being too on trend, if you get what I mean. They have been all over the catwalk for SS09, but I had to think of something which would be wearable, commercial yet conceptual and would fit in with the upcoming spring/summer collections - the winner will be sold in Start boutique in Shoreditch and online. It took a lot of research and a lot of thinking, but I am happy with the final outcome, so let's just hope the judges agree!!
Oh, the sculptural beauty of these dresses astounds me. The detail, intricacy and amazing skill which is required to make these dresses is quite simply amazing. They are complete perfection...why can't we all live in a world of couture?
What do you think?
On a completely separate note - I NEED YOUR HELP. I am completely desperate to join the fashion spot - do any of you beautiful fashion lovers have invitations you can send out? If you do, I'd be eternally grateful if you could send one my way.I love the site, and would really love to become a part of the forums and postings...and just think of the extended research I could do for this little blog!
A lot of time recently has been taken up with various fashion projects (including the fashion156 competition - which is coming along nicely by the way - I will post details soon!), and for this I have had to take time out for 'me'. It gets rather hectic working full time in fashion, coming home and sketching/draping, keeping up with the blog, updating scrap/sketchbooks and trying to lead have some kind of social life away from this computer. That all sounds rather tragic now it's in type, but that's not my intention. Bla bla, shut it Carl.
Anyways...I have always had a fascination with the fashion/art divide and rules which lay between them. Li Xiaofeng is a Beijing artist who uses fashion as a platform to present his art, albeit in a very literal way. Using porcelain china from the song, ming, yuan and qing dynasties, he 'sews' segments onto a leather undergarment to create beautifully sculptural pieces of art. Incredibly these pieces can actually be worn, as illustrated below.
P.S. - i can't believe no-one liked the Prada video from the previous post!
The vintage sale was a complete disaster, I didn't even bother getting a bag, let alone filling it. So I'm sorry guys, no bargains to show you. Just out of interest though, quite a few of you said you were keen to see what I bought - do you want me to post about my personal style? This was never my intention with the blog, as I find it a tad narcissistic, but if that's what you want...?
Anyways, back to the post. If you haven't already noticed, there is one mighty fine man-model below. Although this is not what I want to share with you, he is a bit fit yeah? It's the trousers, oh the beautiful Dior Homme pleats. I have been drooling over these since I first saw them on the catwalk (AW08-09), and nothing in the shops seems to quite hit the button like these do. I've completely missed the boat with these as they probably aren't in the shops anymore - like I could afford them anyway - I'll just have to pray that one day some discerning gent is stupid enough to sell them to Bang Bang or something. In the meantime, I've put it on my ever growing list of DIY projects to do. These never get done, as I am a womenswear designer...so the ladies always come first and projects for myself get put on the back burner.
If your jaw is not on the floor, because of a) the beautiful trousers or b) the model, there is something actually wrong with you. Please visit your doctor.
If you can, look at the detailing at the waistband of this pair. Satin ribbon sewn into the pleats? Whatever next...They need to adorn my waist, that's what!
Sigh. The folds of fabric have me well and truly sucked in. These trousers are so hot that I've even stopped looking at the model wearing them. The deconstructed jacket (also Dior Homme) is brilliant and something else I shall give a go, if I learn the art of tailoring one day!
The shoot is taken from a wonderful magazine called 'Nico. Fashion & Interviews' - my new favourite mag - which was styled by Kris Van Assche himself. Although most of it's in French (with a few translations at the back) the imagery and content is by far the best I've seen in a long time. Without wearing the heavy and restrictive chains (read: advertising bribes from the big-gun fashion houses) that larger magazines do, this mag is free to do pretty much what it likes. All Hail Nico!
I have never before been so pleased with myself! I stumbled upon this brilliant Japanese brand completely by accident - I was so mesmerised by her collection that I forgot what I was originally searching for. As the title says, the label is Toga designed by Yasuko Furyta. I have always had a not-so-secret obsession with Japanese designers, but recently this has been wilting (my interest in Comme, Miyake and co. has been over shadowed by fresh, young Scandinavian designers). When I was at University I wrote my dissertation on the 'Japanese Invasion' of the 1980s, and even based my graduate collection around the idea of malformation (inspired by the abstract body shapes created by many Japanese designers around that time), so when I found - and fell in love with - Toga, I was delighted to revisit my Japanese fling.
The balance between conceptual silhouettes/lines and beautiful wearable garments is just perfect. A narrowed waist, exaggerated hips and plenty of frills and chiffon to keep even the most dainty girls happy! I mean just look at the use of fabrics, the combination of muted neutrals and midnight blues and the juxtaposition of fluid drapes with angular panelling - and all in perfect symmetry.
I cannot express how much I love this collection, but I wish they stocked in the UK. I've done a little Internet 'research' and as far as I can tell, they only sell in Japan. Maybe one day if I ever get to that side of the globe I'll get to see these beautiful creations in the flesh, as I imagine these 2D images do them no justice.
These images are not unlike the amazing 'feature' posts from Jill Sherman's Trend de la creme, but I found these in the latest 125 magazine. Both use comparison as their narrative, but personally I prefer Jill Sherman's as she chooses a collection, showing a 'look' next to the comparative subject (her latest being Gucci and Pysanka, which are traditional hand-painted Ukrainian Easter eggs, for those of you who were wondering). So yeah, what I'm trying to say is that these 125 images are beautiful, but on an intellectual level Jill Sherman wins hands-down.
So the holidays are officially over and tomorrow sees my perilous return to work - let's just hope the bosses have had a good break! Like I'm sure most of you have, I stupidly made many little resolutions this New Year (one of which is to quit smoking....hmmm) but my most important one has been to throw myself well and truly into my work - on all levels - and this means updating this blog regularly, keeping it a true place of personal inspiration.
Lucy McRae and Bart Hess (collectively known as Lucy & Bart) have the best working relationship I have read about for a long time, and they have fun with it. They are both designers - in the broadest sense of the word, not restricting themselves to one genre of design - doing freelance commercial work from Monday to Thursday, then every Friday they meet up to create work using the ideas which overflow from their commercial work. They essentially create images of themselves in unusual poses against a neutral background, with 'weird material' stuck on their bodies. This abstract from their blog talks roughly about what their intentions are -
"...an instinctual stalking of fashion, architecture, performance and the body. They share a fascination with genetic manipulation and beauty expression. Unconsciously their work touches upon these themes, however it is not their intention to communicate this. They work in a primitive and limitless way creating future human shapes, blindly discovering low – tech prosthetic ways for human enhancement."
I can't even begin to imagine how much fun these two must have creating these brilliant images - it's like going back to my student days, but on a whole different (and more professional) level! Fun is apparently the key to their success, and they use this to help inspire their freelance work. Maybe I should spend a few less hours with a beer in my hand, and get the post-it notes, some ping-pong balls and a whole load of glue out?