emerson fry fw2014

The Emerson Fry FW2014 line was released this week. I was excited to see the full product line after viewing the preview earlier this month. The line features versatile pieces in mostly neutral colorways. It channels a quality over quantity vibe and balances masculine and feminine elements. I appreciate the simple, modern aesthetic of this line. I also appreciate that there is a continuity across seasons in design elements and signature items returning each season, like the luxe emerson t. I am pretty much obsessed with the topper coat and cobra slides shown here.  

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affordable, hip Copenhagen

Generator Hostels is a new kid on the hostel block with eight outposts in seven cities across Europe. They are currently available in the following cities: Barcelona, Berlin (has two), Copenhagen, Dublin, Hamburg, London, and Venice. Generator Hostels is set for expansion in 2015 with properties opening in Paris and Rome. Each property has unique attributes, for example, Generator Hamburg was once used as a recording studio for the Beatles! 

While I have not been (yet!) to confirm, I found the prices online start around 50 USD for a dorm style bed and shared bath. 

Check out some images from the Copenhagen outpost.

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Here is a look that I styled with a visit to Copenhagen in mind. The city recently concluded fashion week for SS15. The street style and fashion presentation pictures that I saw documenting the event inspired me. I chose to stick with a neutral palette of soft grey and tan that seemed befitting to the environment of the city. 

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gamine style icon: Audrey Hepburn

Audrey Hepburn is a style icon. These words are thrown around pretty loosely these days with any ingenue with a great stylist and a hit outfit becoming an instant style icon. Audrey is the real deal. There are some specific things about her enduring style that make it gamine.

First, the cuts of her clothing. Audrey always wore impeccably tailored pieces. I suppose it did not hurt that she was good friends with Hubert de Givenchy, famed fashion designer. Second, her penchant for timeless, polished yet feminine pieces. Audrey could rock a trench (essential for a gamine), cropped black trousers (thinking of Funny Face), and the all important LBD. While I like her in the full glamour looks made famous in her films, like when she won an Oscar - I can relate to her quotidian looks and see how they work in modern times. Third, her tasteful, natural makeup. She was one of the originators of the strong brow. 

I reference Audrey in movies like Roman Holiday (a personal favorite) regularly. You can look at images of Audrey from over 50 years ago that a current gamine could throw on and still look pretty and put together and not at all dated. Audrey Hepburn: forever cool, forever gamine. 

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dior & i

Last Saturday, I went to the AFI Docs screening of Dior & I at the National Portrait Gallery with my SO. The documentary shows the period right after Raf Simons came on as the creative director at Dior, leading up to his first haute couture showing, which would happen eight weeks later. The documentary provides a rare glimpse into the world of Dior's in-house atelier. We got to meet many of the faces behind those beautiful, well constructed pieces and develop an understanding of their love of their craft. I had a new appreciation for all the work they put in!

I also enjoyed seeing how Raf formed his vision and worked with the atelier to realize it. The culminating moment in the documentary was the showing. It was especially memorable because it was held in a classic, Parisian mansion filled with flowers. Rooms within the mansion had walls covered with flowers. Can you imagine how fragrant that must have been? There were white orchids, goldenrods, delphiniums, and multi-color roses to name a few. 

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I'm not sure about future showings of the documentary but it seems to be making the film festival rounds. Here is an excerpt of the final, nail-biting hours before show time. 

gamine style: la mariniere

In fashion, the term la mariniere refers to a classic, long-sleeved, horizontal striped shirt. It is an essential item in the gamine wardrobe. It is comfortable, cool, and timeless. La mariniere has been worn by chic women and men. Think Coco Chanel, and Pablo Picasso to contemporary fashionable folks like Lea Seydoux, seen below. The styling below on Lea is playful and casual but la mariniere is equally alluring done classic and polished. 

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style study: gamine

A gamine by modern definition is a wide-eyed, elegant young woman with mischievous or boyish charm. The word gamine is of French origin. It used to mean street urchin. Street urchin! I'm not sure how the word traveled so far in its meaning. The modern definition is far more appealing, don't you think?

The modern definition also suits imagery associated with gamine style. Gamine style is youthful, classic, often simple, a bit tomboyish, and a bit ladylike. The young woman below captures it well.

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a window view of dries van noten

Dries Van Noten's creations are those of rare beauty. His vision is being celebrated in an exhibition in Paris at the Musee des Arts Decoratif entitled Dries Van Noten: Inspirations. The exhibition opened one month ago and will run through August 31st. Here is an excerpt of the write up about the exhibition:

...As Dries Van Noten takes us on an intimate journey into his artistic universe, he reveals the singularity of his creative process which he illustrates with his various and numerous sources of inspiration. ... The show also includes photographs and videos, film clips, musical references, as well as artworks by renowned artists ... that have triggered the designer’s imagination throughout his life and career.

For those unable to make it to Paris for the exhibit, the designer also partnered with Barneys New York and filmmaker Andrew Zuckerman to bring his vision to the flagship Barneys New York on Madison Avenue. Here are some of the images from the installation on Madison Avenue.

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minimalist style: clean lines

When I saw this picture of actress and blogger, Ashley Madekwe, I was smitten with her look. She looks modern, on trend, comfortable, and unfussy. The pristine jumpsuit, the warm neutrals to compliment, metallic details through her manicure and minimal jewelry, and the finishing soft, natural makeup - it is well put together and quite chic. It also nails a hallmark of minimal style - clean lines.

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style study: minimalism, pt. 2

"Minimalism is not about abandoning pattern or print. I see minimalism to be a philosophy that involves an overall sense of balance, knowing when to take away, subtract. It's an indulgence in superbly executed cut, quiet plays of color tones and clean strong shapes."

- Calvin Klein

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Here is a beautifully executed example of Calvin Klein's vision of minimalism from the collection's recent pre-fall showing from designer Francisco Costa.

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loehmann's liquidation sale

Discount retailer Loehmann's filed for bankruptcy late last year. It was the third time in their near century of business that they had filed CH11. Of course, I had hoped that they would be able to survive, as they had in the past, but that is not the case. Their bankruptcy judge approved the sale of inventory a few days ago and Thursday morning, I received notice of their going out of business sale. It looks like inventory will be steeply marked down and additional discounts will be imminent. While I don't always score there, I will definitely be stopping by for one last perusal of the backroom and to say farewell to a discounted retail giant.

style study: minimalism

Minimalism. In fashion the minimalist philosophy refers to design that feature clean lines, pared down, architectural details, in a, mostly, monochromatic color scheme. One of the modern masters of this style is Jil Sander. She started her eponymous line in 1973 and has had much success. She has been at the head of the company, taken it public, left, and came back and the brand has grown with a loyal client base. Here are a few looks from her Spring/Summer 2004 collection. It was true to form with some feminine flourish in delicate white cottons and silks.  

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For comparison, here are a few looks from her Spring/summer 2014 offering. Again, true to minimalist fashion with clean lines but she added in subtle patterns, as seen in the second look and textures.

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Even though subtle details have changed, trading out the delicate for the more architectural look, Jil Sander has maintained quality cutting and an easiness in her clothing designs. I appreciate that, in my opinion, her vision for minimalism infuses softness and comfort, instead of veering austere and severe. It is understandable how she could draw a loyal client base with this vision, who doesn't want to be comfortable AND elegant.

Recently, it was announced that Jil Sander would again depart from her line, as creative director, for personal reasons and that the in house design team would design the upcoming F/W 2014 offering.

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grunge style: plaid

As seen here, plaid is a cool counterpart to a laid-back look. The cut of the shirt is an interesting play on the button down and plays nicely with her ripped jeans. I particularly like that the look also has a dash of traditional luxury courtesy of the Louis Vuitton clutch. The great thing about plaid is that it is also a versatile styling item - it can read polished, preppy, elegant, sharp, and, of course, grunge.

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style study: perry ellis ss 1993

In the fall of 1992 Marc Jacobs took a bold step at Perry Ellis that may have lead to his eventual firing but won him accolade as CFDA (Council of Fashion Designers of America) Designer of the Year by showing a collection inspired by grunge. In the runway presentation there were the 90's supers (Christie, Naomi, Kate, etc) in plaid, chiffon florals, floppy beanies, and Dr. Marten-esque boots. The grunge look is experiencing a major revival right now and while the styling is a bit different, the vibe is the same - kind of aloof, darkly romantic, and a bit subversive.

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image via vogue 

style study: 2 tone

2 tone is a musical style that combines elements of punk rock and ska. There are a few bands that are often credited with the sound: The Specials, The Selector, and Bad Manners. Members of these bands are pictured below wearing some of the trademark styles of 2 tone fashion. The fashion styling features strong black and white detailing with sharp, clean lines. Pop-punk bands like No Doubt have clearly taken inspiration from 2 tone and reference the movement as an inspiration point for their work. Looking at the enduring popularity of checkerboard Vans, they aren't the only ones influenced by 2 tone.

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punk style icon: kathleen hanna

Kathleen Hanna is a modern, feminist, punk icon. She has served as the face of the Riot Grrrl movement and front woman for bands (with an S) Bikini Kill, Le Tigre, and, most recent, The Julie Ruin. She was never afraid to speak her mind and continues to do so through her various projects and speaking engagements. Recently, a film about her life debuted at SXSW to critical acclaim entitled, The Punk Singer. The film is making the rounds at film festivals across the country. The Julie Ruin also released an album entitled, Run Fast, September 3rd, with a stateside tour. Her style has evolved and refined over the years (I am sure that we all hope to evolve and refine over the years!) but remains a bit eccentric and quirky with a good measure of irreverence.

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images via vulture, spin

style study: the met exhibit

The Metropolitan Museum of Art chose to honor punk fashion this year with it's annual Costume Institute exhibition entitled PUNK: Chaos to Couture. The exhibit showcased the strong influence that the punk movement has had on high fashion since its inception in the early 70s with designs for men and women. The Met describes the exhibit as follows: Focusing on the relationship between the punk concept of "do-it-yourself" and the couture concept of "made-to-measure," the seven galleries will be organized around the materials, techniques, and embellishments associated with the anti-establishment style. Themes will include New York and London, which will tell punk's origin story as a tale of two cities, followed by Clothes for Heroes and four manifestations of the D.I.Y. aesthetic—Hardware, Bricolage, Graffiti and Agitprop, and Destroy.  Designers in the exhibition include Miguel Adrover, Thom Browne, Christopher Bailey (Burberry), Hussein Chalayan, Francisco Costa (Calvin Klein), Christophe Decarnin (Balmain), Ann Demeulemeester, Dior, Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana (Dolce and Gabbana), John Galliano, Nicolas Ghesquière (Balenciaga), Katharine Hamnett, Viktor Horsting and Rolf Snoeren (Viktor & Rolf), Christopher Kane, Rei Kawakubo (Comme des Garçons), Karl Lagerfeld (Chanel), Helmut Lang, Martin Margiela, Malcolm McLaren, Alexander McQueen, Franco Moschino and Rossella Jardini (Moschino), Kate and Laura Mulleavy (Rodarte), Miuccia Prada, Gareth Pugh, Zandra Rhodes, Hedi Slimane (Saint Laurent), Stephen Sprouse, Jun Takahashi (Undercover), Riccardo Tisci (Givenchy), Gianni Versace, Junya Watanabe, Yohji Yamamoto, and Vivienne Westwood.

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images via the metropolitan museum of art - gallery views

The exhibit was also commemorated with a book that is available for purchase through The Metropolitan Museum of Art Store.  

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