Category Archives: Travel

GOOD MORNING NYC

NYC

Good morning, folks! Just woke up and am enjoying the view from my room, crazy! Love beeing here. Today I’m heading to a couple of meetings but then I have a couple of hours in the afternoon spent with my bestie, can’t wait!

Venezia

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Venezia and its pure magic, caught during my last visit with Diesel.

Venezia e la sua magia pura, catturata durante la mia ultima visita insieme a Diesel.

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I was wearing:

CHRISTIAN LOUBOUTIN SHOES
DIESEL DRESS

Photos by Gregorio Capineri Tosetti

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In the desert to Coachella

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Good morning Europe (and almost goodnight for me in Los Angeles): It’s been some days since my last post (and we’re preparing you a huge surprise) and I spent a wonderful Coachella weekend with Guess.
I think most of you have already seen my real time updates on Instagram (and Lana Del Rey and Calvin Harris live performances): you’ll also see on the blog all the looks worn, starting from this jumpsuit worn in the desert with my sunglasses from the capsule collection Chiara Ferragni + Italia Independent :)

Buongiorno Europa (e quasi buonanotte per me a Los Angeles): sono passati alcuni giorni dal mio ultimo post (e vi stiamo preparando una maxi sorpresa) ed io ho passato un meraviglioso weekend a Coachella insieme a Guess.
Penso che la maggior parte di voi abbia visto i miei update in tempo reale sul mio profilo di Instagram (e le performance live di Lana Del Rey e Calvin Harris): pian piano anche qui sul blog tutti i look indossati, partendo da questa tutina indossata nel deserto insieme ai miei occhiali della capsule collection Chiara Ferragni + Italia Independent :)

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I was wearing:

BALENCIAGA BOOTIES
GUESS JUMPSUIT
CAIA JEWELS
CHANEL GRAFFITI BACKPACK
CHIARA FERRAGNI + ITALIA INDEPENDENT SUNGLASSES

Photos by Andrew Arthur

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Bigger Fish

In my round-up on Business of Fashion about MBFWA, one of the initial run-up thoughts of trepidation surrounding the schedule was that there weren’t enough “big” names to bolster the fashion week.  One omission was particularly glaring.  Dion Lee – arguably Australia’s biggest designer success story at the moment, already showed his mainline collection in New York, where normally it would be the central headline draw of MBFWA.  It’s worth reminiscing about those heady sun-filled shows at Sydney Opera House five/four years ago when Lee was beginning to debut and really caught our attention as a red-hot one-to-watch.  He’s well on his way to becoming much more than a one-to-watch with his international ascent, an established second line, a newly launched swimline and a first notch store in Sydney (with Melbourne to come).

Therefore it was high time to give his second line, which makes up around 70% of his business, a decent show.  It certainly wasn’t a second-best or second-rate show from Lee and in fact was still a highlight of the week despite the lack of theatrics or stunning venues.  That’s because the clothes spoke directly to the audience.  It made you want to shop and wear pronto.  Simples as that.  I’m not a huge fan of immediate pre-order and tend to want instant gratification in purchases but here Lee’s pieces jumped out at your credit card.  There’s a reason why Lee doesn’t call Dion Lee II a “diffusion” line.  There’s nothing lightweight about them.  Twisted shirts, jackets with twisted elbow cut-outs, sports-striped basics and yes, even the little waistcoats done up as belts all felt solid and looked like cornerstone pieces.  Sure, it’s down to styling but it’s nonetheless persuasive.   There are little nifty design features about every piece that makes you want to wear them over and over again, as demonstrated by a blue sweater with cross-over cut-out straps in the back (currently available in black or white) from his first collection of Dion Lee II.  I’ve turned to it time and time again and I have no idea why.  That’s the sort of wear you’d want out of a twisted basic.

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A peek into his first store in Sydney’s historic Strand Arcade and it was the second line pieces that I immediately made a beeline for.  Then of course, saturated colour, sharp prints and pattern cutting detailing took over my attention span as Lee’s mainline pieces constrast starkly against the concrete, mirrored and raw wood interior, designed by Kelvin Ho of Akin Creative.  Inside the dressing room, you’ll find yourself looking and getting lost in a lit-up infinity mirror installation, created by artist Jason Sims.  If you’re trying on Lee’s architectural lines, trompe l’oeil prints and intricate pleating, then the reflections are bound to be mesmerising.  I did fully intend to sensibly stock up on will-wear-all-the-bloody-time line II pieces given that they’re somewhat harder to find in the UK (Lee is looking into ways of expanding the wholesale business of line II abroad) but neon lines got the better of me and I opted for a criss-cross grid wrapover skirt, that looks a little like a deranged printer cartridge colour test.

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0E5A3175Worn with Topshop sheer tops in blue and green, Ryan Lo pink camisole and Christopher Kane belt and sandals

the Motoretta dress

emerson fry motoretta dress

Pictures by Mattias Swenson

BACK. Hey guys! Just wanted to let you know that I’m not dead, but sadly, my computer is. It crashed the day after I got home from Mexico, but luckily enough, I had backups on almost everything so nothing important got lost. Fingers crossed that my new computer will arrive soon, I have so many photos to share with you!

Anyway, here’s a bunch of pictures we shot during the first couple of days in Mexico. I’m wearing a 60′s inspired dress (love!) from Emerson Fry’s s/s 14 collection, Céline sunnies and my beloved clutch from Anya Hindmarch. More pictures below!

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celine audrey sunglasses via fashionsquad.com

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DRESS Emerson Fry (here). CLUTCH Anya Hindmarch (here). FLATS Zara. SUNGLASSES Céline. 

In Venice with Diesel

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Last time I came to Venice was probably on a romantic express trip or at the film festival, so i’ve seen it pouring down with rain and also with a bright sunshine, what I’ve never seen in Venice is a single day without a Tourist. But this time was different, we spent little time hanging out with tourist and more with the Diesel team, cos they threw an amazing party to celebrate Nicola Fomichetti’s new collection, and the fact that he’ll be from now on the new creative director of the label in charge of all. *Remember he’s been spooling us with capsule collections? well he’s now here and he’s planning to stay for a while! I chose a Diesel total looks with a starry organza shirt and denim shorts with the new jogging jacket, a very Jessica Simpson mix hahaha! But i loved it!!! My boots are from Maje and lipstick by Dior.

Estas son las fotos de la ultima colección de Nicola Formichetti para Diesel, pero no volamos hasta Venecia para presenciar tan solo una colección sino el paso del legado de Renzo Rosso a Nicola como  director creativo y diseñador de la casa. En un evento de ensueño donde nos movíamos de barco en barco no perdimos la alegria ni un minuto y es que en Diesel lo cuidan todo al detalle! Para la ocasión elegí camisa de organza, shorts denim y cazadora jogging todo de Diesel con botas Maje. Gracias Pedro por hacer que cada viaje sea inolvidable!

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The post In Venice with Diesel appeared first on AMLUL.COM.

Phuket: A Boy Named Sue, part 1

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Kit is wearing: Tennis zipper skirt by Svilu.

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Shini is wearing: Wind chime white cropped top by Kaarem, and embossed alcantara shorts by Hien Le.

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Kit-Lee---ABNS---The-Racha

Kit is wearing: Boatneck open back dress by Kaarem. 

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Shini is wearing: Wind chime taupe top by Kaarem, and silk petal grey skirt by Isabell de Hillerin.

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Right: Garden top by Ace & Jig.

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Kit-Lee---ABNS---The-Racha

Kit is wearing: Oiseaux lace white top by Bonheur, and vegan suede alcantara surf shorts by Hien Le.  Shini is wearing: Marigold tent dress by Svilu.

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ABNS---The-Racha @styleslicker

Instagram: @styleslicker@aboynamedsueshop, @theracha_resort, and @smithhotels.  #ABNSxKitShin

Thailand, Vietnam, and Bali has never been on my bucket list of things to do before I die –  I know right?  Assuming that eating pho, pad thai at your London locals, and watching The Beach and Bridget Jones’s Diary – The Edge of Reason on ITV channel pretty much half of my lifetime, is enough to experience the paradise of Indochina at your door step.  Oh no no, how wrong I was.  An opportunity arose for Shini and I to collaborate on a travel and style piece with our good friend, A Boy Named Sue*, an eco-friendly online fashion boutique based in Hong Kong.

A brief visit to Hong Kong in March, although I’ve already booked my return flights to Hong Kong for June a week before receiving the proposal, but hooha, it was a perfect excuse to show Shini around my favourite part of the city, meet new peeps, binge shopping on beauty products, bearing in mind we had grass jelly desserts 3 nights in a row, we became addicts to grass jelly of all sorts.

Upon our arrival in Phuket, skipping the first half of the story until last.  An exhilarating 45 minute speed boat ride from Chalong Bay to The Racha resort in Raya Island, this is it, no words can describe this Eureka moment.  The fine white sand, clusters of palm trees surrounding the island and the resort, the purple-orange sunset and our lovely individual villas with indoor pool, telling myself  ‘I envy of those who live in Asia, because they have paradise right at their door step,’ while we have Paris and Milan in Europe, envious on both parts, it’s vice versa.  Sweating like buckets and treating it like an open space sauna 24/7, all things became surreal after we shot the lookbook for A Boy Named Sue, we went snorkelling in the sea chasing after exotic creatures, this was my second trip swimming in the sea in my entire life.  A couple evenings of movie marathon and enjoying our unforgettable Thai feast, we both ordered the same seafood coconut soup 2 nights in a row because it was finger lickin’ good, I can vouch for it.

Stay tuned for Phuket: A Boy Named Sue, part 2.


All garments credited in this post are available to buy at A Boy Name Sue shop.
All outfit photos photographed by Shini Park, and edited by me.
*In collaboration with A Boy Named Sue.  Shini Park & Kit Lee were guests of The Racha, courtesy of Mr & Mrs Smith.


The post Phuket: A Boy Named Sue, part 1 appeared first on STYLE SLICKER.

Risqué Business

What’s in a reference? It’s not the be all and end all but when you start with John Hughes films, Saved by the Bell and Working Girl, you know you’re on to to a good thing already.  Emma Mulholland has a knack for vibing on things that you instantly get excited about.  And by “you”, I mean a generation of people between the ages of 14 (retrogazing the 80s and 90s starts young these days) and 40 (the ones that remember these films from the first time round).  Perfect then for a Mulholland’s particular brand of elevated casuals.  Strands of surf/skate streetwear run as a constant through Mulholland’s work.  These are no-brainer clothes to be worn without the need to overthink or over-complicate.  It’s the sort of witty light touch you want from sun-drenched Sydney.

There’s a reason why embellished pieces that characterised Mulholland’s earlier work has been reduced to a few sequinned dresses and instead her 80s inflected spray painted pastel prints take centre stage.  A t-shirt proclaiming boredom is sure to tickle any 9 to 5 workers out there. and help Mulholland cement her niche in fun n’ frolic fashion.  It’s no wonder fresh newcomer designers such as Hayley Elsaesser and Ciara Nolan, who showed as part of the Innovators show, are also following that path.  There’s a sleepover print dotted with sleep masks, cucumbers and Cyndi Lauper and Grace Jones staring back at your with their heavily made-up eyes.  The office stationary cupboard is raided as paper clips get turned into a luminous blue print and post-its are scribbled and doodled all over.  White shirts a la Joel Goodson Risky Business also come scrawled with #Bored childish etchings.  The palette has taken on those pastel Miami-inspired hues that graced many a t-shirt and sweatshirt that are hidden in the 80s corner of my mum’s closets.  Turn up Tears for Fears real loud, chill out and just carpe diem guys!

P.S. Oooh looky, product!  The sunnies, which Emma did with Pared Eyewear are available for pre-order tout suite.  Styles called Risqué Business and The Brat Pack are perfect for wearing very far down on the nose in manner of bad-boy John Bender.

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Reflector

Mercedes Benz Fashion Week Australia has had a shifty shifty this year.  It’s a day less than the usual five.  There are a lot of new names on the schedule.  The usual biggies have either opted to show abroad or their presence at MBFWA has been refocused.  For the new establishment, that might have meant showing eveningwear only (Ellery), staging a show for their second line (Dion Lee) and in the case of Romance was Born, they opted not to do a catwalk show at all.  The lure of the pink glittering disco ball outside the Carriageworks space where Romance was Born’s exhibition “Reflected Glory” is installed at the moment until the 11th May is the precursor to this unique collaboration.

Working with Perth-based visual artist Rebecca Baumann, Luke Sales and Anna Plunkett paired a special series of dresses, signifying a personal rite of passage, with an immersive installation.  Inspired by Baumann’s particular penchant for “painting” with light, Luke and Anna went for reflective surfaces galore in both embroidery and print on gowns that hang suspended like garment equivalents of memory-laden disco balls.  The house party where Anna and Luke first met is represented by a Madonna t-shirt that Luke was wearing at the time, now converted into a trailing dress and bedazzled with clear sequins.  Other moments like a sweet 16 party , New Year’s Eve, a wake and Mardi Gras are also represented, basking in the kinetic energy thrown around by Baumann’s installation.  Baumann’s work isn’t just a physical presence but a strong reference point for Luke and Anna when they photographed sequins, prom dresses, tinsel in strong sunlight to achieve their print stories this season (a full ready to wear collection accompanies this exhibition).  Whilst all surfaces reflect and refract off one another, it’s clear that Luke and Anna are also reflecting on the past in their minds, looking back to their beginnings when as two heady graduates, they came together to make and create without constraint.  This signified a return to that period of time.  After all, they’ve reached a level of stature on their home turf where much love comes their way.  I love seeing girls here talk about Romance with a twinkle and shine in their eyes.

The brilliant thing of course is that as well as returning to Anna and Luke’s hands-on, crafticular roots, the exhibition enables them to share their work with their fanbase.  A hardcore fanbase at that.  They’ll wander in, waft around in the shimmering shadows of reflected rainbow colours and revel in embellished symbolic loveliness and walk out basked in an afterglow of happiness.  And they’ll head over to the nearest rail (or e-commerce site) where RWB is stocked and buy into a duo who don’t just settle for pure product.  It’s got depth and heart.

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Good Evening Sydney

If you haven’t guessed from my Instagram flashing at you above, I’m in Sydney at the moment making this my fifth time here for Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Australia.  The “Oh, Brit blogger at MBFWA” novelty has well and truly worn off.  I hang around asking for long black coffees, can tell if I’m in Redfern or Eveleigh and  more to the point, know the lay of the land when it comes to Australian designers.  The tired stereotype about Australian fashion is that designers here do resort froth contemporary-categorised clothes well, appropriate for sun, sand and sea.  At least, that was the autopilot quote I trotted out when put on the spot by video cameras here and asked about what Australian style means to me.

The truth is, as is normally the case – far more nuanced.  They might be exceptions rather than the norm but a few of the designers I’ve seen thus far buck that straightforward Australian style stereotype and yet within their chosen path of eveningwear, still manage to steer their collections towards an unexpected twist that feels idiosyncratic to Australia.  They might have ambitions to steer clear of a slubby t-shirt and a pair of silk pyjama bottoms but their take on “dressy” dressing betrays their roots.  These clothes can sit poolside and beachside and they can get wet too.

Kym Ellery for example has always pushed her brand towards an aesthetic that is anything but easy breezy.  In fact there’s something deliberately difficult about her penchant for sculptural peplums, stiffened flared trousers and weighty satins and silks.  Like you need to really have a vaguely daring and brazen attitude to be an Ellery girl.  Her show staged in the iconic Icebergs restaurant in Bondi was a focused affirmation of that.  As she had already shown what is her A/W 14-5 collection in Paris already, for MBFWA, she proposed “what the Ellery girl might wear on the red carpet.”  All hail the moment that someone dons a nose chain, a crinkled pink-topped mullet ponytail and an extra elongated flared-sleeved mesh gown.  It’s unlikely to happen but Ellery’s specific proposal for eveningwear definitely makes you wish someone would rebel rebel it up.  There was talk of Zoroastrianism, shadows chasing light in the sequence of ensembles and science of life.  None of that really matters though when in Kym’s own words, it was about “keeping it cool.”  There’s a lot of that c word about in Sydney.  It’s inexplicable and yet frequently seen in the models larking around after the shows, gaggles of girls hanging around in Bondi and the fuck-it effortlessness manner of attire.  Ellery was naturally tapping into that.  The chunky footwear, the in yyour face (literally) jewellery made in collaboration with Henson and  the hair of course are all pure styling but together with the deliberately elongated silhouettes, the stiffened fabrics and complex pleats and way evening looks were built up in layers and asymmetric tilts, this was a girl stalking her own stretch of ceremonial carpet – black perhaps.

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Later on in the evening, we felt like we were breaking into a public pool on a naughty escapade as we filed in for Karla Spetic‘s show.  This night time dip may not strictly speaking be classified as “eveningwear” but Spetic’s affinity with a well-proportioned slip-dress, slippery silk satin and sheer panels might suggest otherwise – or at the least points to a night time pyjama pool party.  Spetic has honed in on her shape of choice and this time, her delicate slips and mid-length sheer shifts come adorned with Stepford Wife apron ruffles and circular cut-outs.   These pearly iridescent princesses, were augmented by Ryan Storer’s jewellery and worked in strands of pink hair and then fully illustrated by a printed panel of a pearl necklace and a pearl-giving oyster on the finale dresses.  It’s almost pretty-pretty to the point of sugar overdose.  Until you see the girls stomp at rapid pace in their white Reebok Classics, monogrammed in silver with “K” and “S”.  These are dresses made not for standing stiffly sipping a cocktail but for moving about energetically in as the loose-ish shapes and leg-splits suggest.  The fact that it was all proposed poolside, immediately made me wish I could jump in wearing one of Spetic’s sheer-panelled slip/shifts.  Or the satin patchworked white shirt.  Or the pink satin cut-out dress.  Which ever piece, it all looks drenched thoroughly.  That’s the much-welcome crrep of Spetic’s sun n’ surf surroundings.

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Toni Maticevski‘s experience in the Australia fashion game once again shows.  His aesthetic also took a slightly surprising rejig, following last year’s collection shown at MBFWA.  The oeuvre that he had set himself for last year was further eked out,  as he teased out tech-y fabrics into shapes of flowers.  Except the shaping looked that bit extra precise, the articulation between sportswear and eveningwear more tightly focused and the fabrics were also well chosen.  A supremely thin neoprene-eseque crease-free fabric was used on a lot of the dresses in a deliberate sci-fi twist to contrast with the formation of what Maticevski called “orchid metamorphosis.”  The main takeaway though is that Maticevski reigns supreme in getting these wetsuit, toughed out fabrics to drop, scrunch, fold and sculpt beautifully.  Black sportswear mesh worked over a floral brocade gown works.  A flouncy circle skirt with sweatshirt sleeves incorporated in the front looks natural as opposed to forced.  It was my kind of eveningwear as every look pitted surf-derived activewear against Maticevski’s demi-couture sensibility.  The accompanying tubular jewellery made in collaboration with Dinosaur Designs suggest chunky headphones or wristbands.  As the models emerged in the finalewith orchids adorning their mouths, the rapturous applause at the end was sealed.  It was also telling that there was this much love for what is one of the few “WOW” shows on the schedule.  Maticevski’s directional comeback moment is resonating abroad too.  See the SS14 collection currently on Avenue 32 as their main international stockist.   It’s onwards and upwards with this newfound verve.

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Spring Breakdown

Advance Warning: My 10 Spring Failures.

Here are 10 activities (among others, since I had to pick and choose) I’m planning to start this spring with a great big heart, motivation on high, and absolutely no memory of the fact that every spring…It’s the same story. I decide to:

Exercise more.

“Noooo, hang on a second, you don’t get it. This is Pilates, ok? It’s not the same! It’s the perfect sport for me because my problem is my midsection, really. I’m starting tomorrow. I mean, the day after tomorrow. Tomorrow I’m busy.”

Protect myself from UV rays.

“The sun in the city is awful. Alex, could you maybe talk about it on the blog so we know exactly what we should be doing?” Yes! Ooh la la la, this post is so good! Now I know EXACTLY what to do! I’m starting tomorrow. Mmm, yeah, I really didn’t have time this morning. I was busy.”

Plan my dream vacation.

Not too far.
Not too hot.
Not too close.
My phone? Totally off. Too bad it’s the perfect time to Instagram, though. Because honestly, when you’re not traveling and you’re working on your book every day in bed or on the couch, I’m not sure what there is to take pictures of, other than taking selfies… Well, ok. Just one Instagram per day. But no checking emails!!! …Well, ok, just two per day.
It has to be a couple’s vacation, but with time alone. You know what I mean?
Detox.
But with margaritas starting around 6, though.
Plenty of exercise, and total relaxation.
In the sun.
But in the shade.
See what I mean?

Start taking selfies.

I’ve been saying this for two years now. Oh yeah, definitely: it’s as dumb as it sounds and I still can’t do it.

Change my style.

Tired of being a tomboy! This season, I’m going to be so feminine!!!
Scott, you’re gonna like this.

*Buys three skirts*
*Tries them all on at home*
*Loves it all, go to bed with dreams of a total fashion makeover in my head*
*Has a dream where she’s on the cover of Vogue Paris: Garance, her style, her art*
*Wakes up feeling ready to take on the world!!!*
*When the time comes to get dressed, grabs a pair of jeans and sneakers.*

Have a party.

“Oh my god, I really want to have a party!!! Come on, let’s have a party! Come ooooon, an amazing party!”

I’ll make a playlist. Do you like hip hop? I have a place picked out and everything. We can have it at my friend’s roof top, okay it’s in Brooklyn but it’s going to be so cool. I’ll make some things to eat – all gluten-free, paleo, and vegan, of course. Yep. And macarons. And everyone can bring something to drink, and oh la la, I have the PERFECT cocktail recipe, it’s got fresh fruit in it.
And yeah, obviously – we’ll only invite our real friends, so we can all finally get together for once. Aaaah, it’s going to be so cool!

Ok, so what’s a good date for you? Just let me know! Can you tell me by tomorrow? Ok, cool. Don’t forget, ok? If you don’t remind me, I’ll forget.”

Go to flea markets…

… Or just sit around reading magazines all Sunday morning?
The answer is in the question.

Clean up and get organized.

Yes! It even has a name: Spring Cleaning – the activity that moves Garance to go into her closet, wave her arms around, saying: “It’s unbelievable how much stuff is piling up, no really, how is this even possible?” put on some loud music, dance a little, and sort things into four piles:

- give away
- get altered
- put in the garage
- throw away

Then she remembers she doesn’t have a garage, and has to jump over the four piles all weekend until she gets sick of seeing them and throws it all into one big bag on Sunday night. Only to re-sort the piles the following weekend. And not know where to take the things to give away. And not know where to sell them. Or where to get them altered. Only to finish Spring Cleaning at the end of the summer. Just in time for Fall Cleaning.

Be perfectly waxed every day.

Ahahahahahahahahah!!! Lol.

Be perfectly manicured every day, even on my feet (like, okay, pedicured).

Ahahahahahahahah, come on, stop! It’s too much! I haven’t started Pilates yet – my abs are going to explode from laughing so hard!

Be exactly the same every day for the rest of the year.

Voilà. You get it now. Secret of my life? Never change a winning team.

So, what are your plans this spring?

Translated by Andrea Perdue.

Diesel Reboot

In an interview with a student magazine last week, I digressed into a sideline conversation about the twenty-ten decade being increasingly defined as the age of the “director” as opposed to the designer. The difference being that the former’s remit is to oversee branding, store design, publicity materials, marketing strategies and even social media engagement, in addition to the actual aesthetics of clothes. They direct a whole host of designers working under them to determine the nitty gritty of the clothes. The creative directors at houses are not merely designers and don’t sit at their desk drawing endlessly but instead literally “direct” teams to achieve the correct “direction” of where he/she ultimately sees the label in question. When I interviewed Jenna Lyons from J. Crew, she said she felt like a traffic controller sometimes – steering her team to go this way or that, so that her current role, has moved far and away from her beginnings as a designer. In fashion brands where the levels of hierarchy and infrastructure are convoluted, the director role becomes almost mandatory.

These were the thoughts lolling around my head when I went over to Venice to see Nicola Formichetti’s debut show for Diesel to mark one year since he was appointed as yup, artistic director at the denim powerhouse brand. At Mugler, Formichetti’s attempt to revive the moribund brand divided opinion but his transition from stylist to creative director also riled up conversation.  Alex Fury’s latest profile of Formichetti goes some way to defending that transition as he explains that behind the scenes, stylists do design and sew to some extent.  At Diesel, that stigma is less accute.  It’s is a very different kettle of fish to Mugler and in some way makes a lot more sense for a zeitgeist seizing creative like Formichetti to steer.  Denim, leather and military were laid out as the foundation themes of the show in Venice, but they’re fairly blank canvasses for Formichetti and his team to play around with.

And so in a show set up as a Diesel triptych, those themes played out in three distinct parts, with projections of Nick Knight’s films looming over.  In a city symbolised by carnival, masks and deliberate disguise, the show was brutally relatable.  I don’t mean mundane.  During the final run through of the shows, you saw all eighty-something models – a diverse array of characters that were part street cast (via Tumblr in some cases) – sitting on the bleacher seats, like a high school assembly.  They stomped down the runway like stroppy teenagers, making the clothes look like they had DIY-ed or customised them themselves.  That has a nostalgic currency.  ”I was always interested in fashion from the street and Diesel is about that. I grew up with Diesel,” says Formichetti in the press release. “This collection is almost like going back to where I began as a stylist, when I first moved from Italy to London; being young, looking at global fashion from Italy, Japan and London, all places where the street was key. I wanted to have that feeling back, that Nineties feeling of a world of possibilities, that feeling when I discovered Diesel. It was fun, it was fashion and non-fashion – it was beyond fashion.”

Rather than pushing out a highfalutin fashion statement, instead Formichetti looked at the core values of Diesel and turned up the sharpness dial on everything – the parka coats were given a lick of graffiti spray pain job, the studwork was sharper, the leather looked tougher/harder and the denim effects were fine-tuned.  It might not make a difference to the average Diesel customer, who is contributing to the company’s staggering £1.3 billion turnover but Formichetti’s appointment is certainly turning heads of a new generation of consumer – the people he calls “indigo children” who he finds through Tumblr and connect with one another, unbounded by geography.  The deliberately diverse casting, the ambiguous video projections, Brooke Candy cussing about opulence, the Pussy Riot-inspired balaclava finale and yes, the actual clothes as well – are all the creative fruits of labour of an artistic director like Formichetti.  It’s a composite statement where one element can’t be without the other. Formichetti might have been retrogazing the nineties but his approach is definitely that of the twenty-tens.  Or the tens.  Or tenties.  Whatever you want to call this age of ours.

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Hiking in Big Sur

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Big Sur: a place outside of this world, disconnected from the idea of time and the frenetic rhytms of majority of my life… A place where I rediscovered some of life’s smallest pleasures, like a hike in the middle of the woods and the smell of the ocean.
Now I only am dreaming of coming back.

Big Sur: un luogo fuori dal mondo, scollegato dal tempo e dai ritmi frenetici della maggior parte della mia vita.. Un luogo dove ho riscoperto alcune piccole gioie della vita, come una passeggiata nel bel mezzo del bosco e l’odore dell’oceano.
Ora sogno solo di ritornarci.

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I was wearing:

DR.MARTENS BOOTIES
CAROLINA WYSER JEANS
KOCCA SHIRT
STYLIGION SLEEVELESS TRENCH COAT
CAIA JEWELS RINGS
LINDA FARROW FOR THE ROW SUNGLASSES

Photos by Andrew Arthur

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Only worth living if somebody is loving you

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There are only a few things that make me more excited than a wonderful sunset. Especially when I find myself in a Roberto Cavalli sequined dress on a rooftop with a view on Downtown LA.

Sono pochi gli attimi che mi emozionano come quelli che precedono un bellissimo tramonto.. Soprattuto quando mi trovo su un rooftop con vista su Downtown LA indossando un abitino di Roberto Cavalli.

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I was wearing:

CHRISTIAN LOUBOUTIN PIGALLE SHOES
ROBERTO CAVALLI DRESS
CAIA JEWELS RINGS

Photos by Andrew Arthur

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Moschino by Jeremy Scott

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A better place to shoot some of the iconic pieces of Moschino by Jeremy Scott collection?

Un posto più adatto per scattare uno dei capi iconici della collezione di Moschino by Jeremy Scott?

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I was wearing:

DR.MARTENS BOOTIES
MOSCHINO BY JEREMY SCOTT DRESS
CAIA JEWELS BRACELET
HERMES KELLY BAG

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Beverly Hills

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Black and white: one of the most chic kind of looks. Even cooler If enriched by golden and cream details.
Here is how I wore the perfect Mango little black dress: white slippers, Saint Laurent mini cross over bag and tons of jewels. All shot in the wonderful Beverly Hills.

Bianco e nero: un abbinamento che mai passa di moda. Ancora più ricercato se arricchito da dettagli dorati e color panna.
Ecco come ho indossato il perfetto little black dress di Mango: con mocassini a suola alta, mini cross over bag di Saint Laurent e tantissimi gioielli. Il tutto nella bellissima Beverly Hills.

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I was wearing:

MANGO PLATFORM LOAFERS
MANGO DRESS
CAIA JEWELS LIPS BRACELET
HERMES COLLIER DE CHIEN
LAER LEATHER JACKET
SAINT LAURENT MINI DU JOUR BAG
RAY-BAN SUNGLASSES

Photos by Andrew Arthur

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Postcard from paradise!

Playa Paraiso Tulum

Playa Paraiso in Tulum

MEXICO. Sorry for the radio silence guys! I’m currently in beautiful Tulum, Mexico, on a well needed 2 week escape from chilly NY. This place is absolutely magical and I have so many pictures + memories to share with you guys when I get back home. Until then, follow me on instagram @carolinaengman for lots of pictures!

When in Paris…

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Paris.. Paris.. Isn’t it the city of beauty where you just can’t avoid looking for inspiration for the perfect makeup? And for the best makeup, skin colour is more than important. The beauty treat? Guerlain showed it to me in my last visit to the french capital with the Terracotta Poudre Bronzante.

Paris.. Paris.. è la città della bellezza dove non si può che trovare ispirazione per un make up perfetto! E per un make up impeccabile (e ricercato), il colore della pelle è fondamentale. Il trucco? Guerlain me lo ha svelato nella mia ultima visita della capitale francese con la Terracotta Poudre Bronzante.

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Big Sur roadtrip

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I had already stopped by Big Sur twice in my life before: both times I was driving from Los Angeles to San Francisco and the time I could dedicate to these crazy views was really short.
Last weekend Andrew and I took two days off, drove for hours to Big Sur, stopped to see every landscape, hiked in some of our favourite spots and abandoned ourselves to the warm sun and ocean breeze, in complete happiness.
These photos tell a bit of those precious moments: here I am in my Styligion look during my roadtrip on the pacific coast.

Ero già passata da Big Sur due volte nella mia vita: in entrambe le occasioni stavo guidando da Los Angeles per andare a San Francisco ed il tempo che potevo dedicare a queste viste mozzafiato era veramente contato.
Lo scorso weekend io ed Andrew ci siamo presi due giorni completamente off, guidando per ore fino a Big Sur e fermandoci ad ammirare ogni panorama che ci incuriosiva, provando diverse passeggiate ed abbandonandoci al sole caldo ed all’odore dell’oceano, in completa estasi.
Queste foto racchiudono alcuni di quei preziosi momenti: eccomi in un look Styligion durante il mio roadtrip sulla costa pacifica.

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I was wearing:

STYLIGION LOOK

Photos by Andrew Arthur

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8 hours of sleep in a click

I’m sure you girls have your own little beauty secrets.. And today I’m so glad that Yves Saint Laurent gave me the opportunity to reveal you one of my faves: Touche Éclat! It’s like a magic pen that erases every shadow gifting a sparkle of light to your face. Watch the video and find out how I use Touche Éclat to make my skin more fresh during the day and bright at night!

Sono sicura che ognuna di voi ha i suoi piccoli segreti di bellezza.. e oggi sono felicissima che Yves Saint Laurent mi abbia dato l’opportunità di svelarvi uno dei miei preferiti: Touche Éclat! Una penna magica che cancella le zone d’ombra e illumina il viso. Guardate il video e scoprite come uso Touche Éclat per rendere la mia pelle luminosa di giorno e brillante di sera!

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Gâteaux Thoumieux

This new (and okay, delicious) bakery just opened in Paris and I couldn’t resist taking a photo. It’s as beautiful inside as it is full of tasty treats…
You must go if you are there!

Click the arrows to see more photos!

Gâteaux Thoumieux, 58 rue Saint Dominique, 75007 Paris.

Jeanne’s Top Spots

We asked Jeanne to tell us some of her top spots in Paris…

Here is her guide to the best of the best!

Croissant: Blé Sucre, 7 rue Antoine Vollon 75012.
Macaron: Pierre Hermé, 133 Avenue des Champs-Élysées, 75008.
Café: Any cafe around the Square Gardette.
Museum: Jeu de Paume, 1 Place de la Concorde, 75008.
Date Spot: Aux Deux Amis, 45 Rue Oberkampf, 75011.
Salon: Studio 34, 34 rue Mont Thabor, 75001.
Shopping: Le Bon Marche, 24 Rue de Sèvres, 75007.
Night out: Le Montana, 28 rue St Benoît, 75006.
Métro Line: 8


By studio

Madonna Inn

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After Milan and Paris photos here I am in my happy place: California.
I’m here for only eight days total before leaving again for Brazil (I’m soon back in Sao Paulo) and I’m literally trying to live the best of these sunny and almost summer days. How? With a two days roadtrip on the pacific coast to Big Sur, why not? On the road (basically in the only hour I was driving) I found by chance the iconic Madonna Inn sign: It deserved a visit.
P.S: Tell me I’m not the only one roadtrippin’ in a lace romper and Dr.Martens #differentkindaroadtrip

Dopo le mie foto di Milano e Parigi eccomi nel mio “happy place”: la California.
Sono qui per soli otto giorni prima di ripartire per il Brasile per lavoro (presto ritorno a San Paolo) e sto letteralmente cercando di vivermi queste splendide giornate di sole dal sapore estivo al meglio. Come? Con un roadtrip di due giorni guidando sulla costa pacifica fino a Big Sur, perchè no? Sulla strada, (praticamente nell’unica ora in cui ero io al volante) ho visto per caso l’iconico cartello del Madonna Inn: meritava una visita.
P.S: Ditemi che non sono l’unica a viaggiare in macchina in tutina di pizzo e Dr.Martens #differentkindaroadtrip

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I was wearing:

DR.MARTENS BOOTIES
STYLESTALKER ROMPER
HERMES COLLIER DE CHIEN BRACELET
CHANEL BOY BAG

Photos by Andrew Arthur

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Chloe in Paris

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Last one of my Paris looks, in perfect Chloe french style :)

Ultimo dei miei look parigini, in perfetto stile francese firmato Chloe :)

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I was wearing:
CHLOE TOTAL LOOK
HAIR BY REDKEN 5TH AVE

Photos by Leslie Kirchhoff

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Blanche

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#runbabyrun. Here I am after Louis Vuitton show with a total white look. Sneakers at my feet and always on the go.

#runbabyrun.. Eccomi dopo la sfilata Louis Vuitton con un look tutto white. Sneakers ai piedi e via di corsa.

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I was wearing:

LOUIS VUITTON TOTAL LOOK
LINDA FARROW SUNGLASSES

Photos by Andrew Arthur

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PurseBlog Goes to SXSW

PurseBlog Goes to SXSW

After a long and amazing week at South by Southwest, it feels good to finally be back in New York (minus the cold weather, of course). Last Thursday, Amanda and I jetted off Austin to spend a week at SXSW Interactive, attending thought-provoking panels and keynotes, eating tons of delicious food, exploring the city with great bags and making new friends.

For those of you who aren’t familiar with SXSW, it’s an annual music, film and interactive conference that takes place over a three week time period in Austin, Texas. The Interactive portion is primarily focused on digital creativity and emerging technologies. There are presentations and panels from some of the biggest people in the digital world, trade shows, networking events and an endless amount of parties to attend.

From our flight to our food, we documented just about every step of the trip to give you a look at the PurseBlog team’s SXSW experience. Take a look some of the highlights from our trip and the places we visited.

The post PurseBlog Goes to SXSW appeared first on PurseBlog.

Ballroom in Paris

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Nothing makes me feel sexier than a naked back dress. If the dress is in leather and It is worn with flat booties and super studded jacket then.. #Igetcrazy

Niente mi fa sentire sexy quanto un abito con la schiena scoperta. Se l’abito in questione è di pelle e viene indossato insieme a stivaletti bassi e giacca iper borchiata poi.. #Igetcrazy

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I was wearing:

BALENCIAGA BOOTIES
MLLE LEATHER DRESS
BURBERRY LEATHER JACKET
EDDIE BORGO CUSTOMIZED HEADPIECE
HAIR BY REDKEN 5TH AVE

Photos by Leslie Kirchhoff

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Chanel in Paris

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Total Chanel look in Paris for the show of the maison.. Couldn’t this be more perfect?

Total look Chanel a Parigi per lo show della maison.. Poteva forse esserci qualcosa di più adatto?

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I was wearing:

CHANEL TOTAL LOOK
HAIR BY REDKEN 5TH AVE

Photos by Andrew Arthur

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Furry gloves in Paris

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First rule when you dress up: having fun. I tried in Paris under the rain with maxi fur gloves and new Moschino by Jeremy Scott it bag.

Prima regola quando ci si veste: divertirsi. Io ci ho provato a Parigi sotto la pioggia con maxi guanti pelosi e nuova borsa di Moschino by Jeremy Scott :)

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I was wearing:

PRADA SHOES
STEFANEL TROUSERS
EQUIPMENT SHIRT
LOUIS VUITTON COAT
MSGM FURRY GLOVES (f/w 2014/2015)
MOSCHINO BAG
HAIR BY REDKEN 5TH AVE

Photos by Leslie Kirchhoff

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Kenzo in Paris

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Recap of my Parisian looks, starting with this Kenzo total look worn last Sunday..

Recap dei miei look Parigini, cominciando con questo total look di Kenzo indossato la scorsa domenica..

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I was wearing:

LOUBOUTIN PIGALLE SHOES
KENZO TOTAL LOOK (s/s2014)
CELINE BOX BAG
CELINE SUNGLASSES

Photos by Andrew Arthur

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Zadig et Voltaire experience in Paris

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My passion for Zadig et Voltaire keeps growing season after season: during this Paris fashionweek I was able to discover the brand even more, choosing my favourite pieces from the new store in Rue St.Roch, visiting the studios where the collections are created, attending the rehearsals and, of course, taking part into the fashion show.
Cecilia Bonstrom, creative director of the brand, outdid herself, creating so many beautiful rock chic looks: perfect to wear from morning to night, rich in details which make the pieces unique. Here are my bad-ass girl favourite looks!

La mia passione per Zadig et Voltaire continua a crescere stagione dopo stagione: durante questa fashionweek parigina sono riuscita a vivere ancora più a fondo il brand, scegliendo alcuni dei miei capi preferiti nel nuovo store di Rue St.Roch, visitando gli studi dove vengono create le collezioni, assistendo alle prove della sfilata e, naturalmente, prendendo parte allo show.
Cecilia Bonstrom, direttrice artistica del brand, si è superata, creando dei look rock chic come piacciono a me: perfetti da indossare dalla mattina alla sera e ricchi di dettagli che danno ai capi un’unicità tutta loro. Ecco i miei look preferiti versione bad-ass girl!

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I was wearing:

ZADIG ET VOLTAIRE

Photos by Andrew Arthur and Gregorio Capineri Tosetti

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From my terrace in Paris

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And during my last day in Paris, before publishing on The Blonde Salad all the fashionweek looks, here is one of the outfits I chose for a night out in the french land, with a Diane Von Furstenberg Perry dress as main character.
The chosen location? The terraces of what has been my house in Paris for these days, with a view on the Eiffel tower and Tuileries gardens.

E durante il mio ultimo giorno a Parigi, prima di pubblicare su The Blonde Salad tutti i look della fashionweek, ecco uno degli outfit che ho scelto per una serata nella capitale francese, con il Perry dress di Diane Von Furstenberg come protagonista.
La location scelta? I piccoli terrazzini di quella che è stata la mia casa a Parigi in questi giorni, con vista su Tour Eiffel e giardini Tuileries.

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I was wearing:

BALENCIAGA BOOTIES
DIANE VON FURSTENBERG DRESS
KOCCA BLAZER
RAY-BAN SUNGLASSES

Photos by Andrew Arthur

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PurseBlog Beauty: SXSW Travel Essentials

PurseBlog Beauty: SXSW Travel Essentials

24 hours from now, Bea and I will be off to warm, sunny Austin for a long weekend of learning about all things Internet-y at the 2014 South By Southwest Interactive Festival. (We’ll also be eating a lot of tacos, but that’s both irrelevant to this particular post and implied in any statements I ever make about going to Texas.) Unfortunately for all involved, going to SXSW requires both suitcase-packing and air travel, two of the most pernicious and hateful activities known to modern man. We’ve had some time to think about it, though, and in case you’re going on a trip in the near future, we’d like to present you with our travel essentials for SXSW and beyond.

The post PurseBlog Beauty: SXSW Travel Essentials appeared first on PurseBlog.

Snow storm in New York

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Flashback to the last look worn in New York, in the middle of a snow storm for the last american showsm shot by Andrew…

Flashback all’ultimo look indossato a New York, nel bel mezzo di una tempesta di neve per le ultime sfilate americane, fotografata da Andrew…

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I was wearing:

DIESEL BLACK GOLD BOOTIES
MOSCHINO BY JEREMY SCOTT TRENCH
CELINE BAG

Photos by Andrew Arthur

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Inspired

“What’s your inspiration this season?” – it’s the stock question of all fashion journalists, who want a pithy quote backstage after a fashion show.  I even say it in my head with a faux-Valley Girl accent because it has been reduced to such levels of dull banality. I’m scratching out that thought though.  As Dries van Noten shows us in an exhibition, due to open tomorrow at the Musée des Arts Décoratifs in Paris, simply titled “Dries van Noten: Inspirations”, inspiration is indeed everything.  Everyone has inspirations but on display here is a masterclass of how to cleverly use references with nuance.  Dries says that his clothes are neither a “photocopy or a homage” to the things that he looks at, be it a piece of clothing, a painting or a film.  Instead, it’s a complex mix of many things, cooked up in that wonderful Antwerp kitchen of his (I remember he once described himself as a bit like a chef, mixing up ingredients) and then altered or changed until it fits within van Noten’s own design universe.  His research and mind might travel to China and India or back into the dapper past of Duke of Windsor’s style but Dries never loses sight of who he is as a designer.

And so the exhibition plays out, not as a straightforward display of all his clothes in chronological order, but split up into themes and motifs, attributed to one or two collections – punk, summer flowers, butterflies, Francis Bacon, dandies, Spain, folk etc etc.  If that sounds simplistic, think again.  Curator Pamela Golbin and Dries jointly picked out pieces from the collection of the museum – all the greats of Yves Saint Laurent, Chanel, Elsa Schiaparelli, Pierre Balmain, Jeanne Lanvin, Christian Dior – and placed them next to trios of his own womens and menswear collections, correlating in theme.  Videos of show footage, additional film references are layered on top on screens and antique artefacts, images and even original artworks from the Louvre hang beside them.

I could go into rhapsody describing every single section and I could have had over 200 images here honing in on every detail.  I absolutely do not want people to experience this exhibition through my paltry images though.  It’s an exhibition that deserves time, effort and definitely multiple visits. Instead I’ll pick out certain highlights.  The sheer oddness of Jane Campion’s The Piano alongside a pot of muscles and a sample of muscle-embroidered fabric from Lesage, inspiring Dries’ A/W 99 Victoriana-hued collection.  Folded up pieces of paper directly from Francis Bacon’s studio, which inspired the A/W 09-10. A display of blindingly gold Coco Chanel and Thierry Mugler pieces next to several of Dries’ collections – it’s interesting that he revisits themes multiple times and comes out with very different results.  When we get to the floral section, wrapped and packaged in Azuma Makota’s flower photographs, this is where Dries really comes into his element.  It’s well known that he is an avid gardener so it’s no surprise that the floral and plant theme gets split up into several sections – Cecil Beaton’s garden party costume, excellent examples of Yves Saint Laurent and Balenciaga and Pina Bausch videos are all there in the inspiration mix.

As well as inspiration, Dries expresses gratitude to the labour process of his work with a video wall of indian handiwork. He has 3,000 people in India depending on Dries van Noten as a business for their livelihoods.  It’s therefore natural that Dries has turned to India multiple times for inspiration from the traditional attire of saris to the kitsch of Bollywood.  And on and on it goes until we get to the final section about his S/S 14 collection where a “Portrait of a Sculptor” by Renaissance painter Bronzino hangs next to a Gerhard Richter piece. Why? Only Dries knows. In his head, that makes sense.

It’s an exhibition structure that works magnificently but it also emphasises the fact that not every designer has a reference library as rich as van Noten’s.  And not everyone can take these references and mine them into an own personally innate signature the way Dries does.  For fashion naysayers, here’s a chance to learn about why fashion matters or why it’s so rich in its outreach because it can touch so many different areas.  Every section is an immersive mind map and truly a joy to see, as the creative process unfolds before you. Inspiration is one of those things that can feel so arbitrary and sometimes far-removed when designers talk about it.  Here it unfurls gracefully and in turn inspires you to think deeper in whatever creative endeavour you’re embarking on.  And yet there’s still some mystery left. How all of these things congeal together to create the many brilliant collections that Dries has designed is still left unexplained. And that’s a good thing. It leaves something to the imagination.

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Tim Blanks’ wonderful video tour for Style.com of the exhibition should definitely sway those not in Paris to take a trip whilst the exhibition is on (until August 31st – go on, Brits – get yourself those cheapie Eurostar £59 return tickets).

A Wooly Tale

I’m in danger of becoming a bit of a hardened cynic if I get too immersed into the cogs of fashion week-ing. It’s something that I rectify by escaping every now and again into anonymous showrooms, into a park for a random jog and into McDonald’s where nobody cares whether you’ve got an invitation or not – you just need to fork over enough money for a coffee to have a seat. No, this isn’t a “Woe is me” plea. Just a stray thought as we reach the home stretches of fashion month as Paris beckons.

In Milan though, I got the opportunity to see a different side to fashion week, handed to me on a plate as I was asked to be a social media ambassador for the International Woolmark Prize global final. Emerging designers getting wads of money as well as international recognition from the inner sanctum of the industry? I’m down with that, hence why I like following the ins and outs of fashion prizes – ANDAM, Swiss Textiles and with the latest convo revolving around the much-talked about LVMH Prize. The International Woolmark Prize, promoting the use of Merino wool, comes with an illustrious history, as Karl Lagerfeld and Yves Saint Laurent came together as winners at the inaugural 1954 awards, in an auspicious sign of their later years as designer foes. Giorgio Armani, Dolce & Gabbana and Donna Karan have also scooped up prizes subsequently.

The regional finalists of this year’s edition have already won AUD50,000 and the grand prize awarded at this year’s final is AUD100,000 plus the chance to be stocked in stores like 10 Corso Como, colette, Harvey Nichols, Joyce and Saks Fifth Avenue, so the stakes were high. The finalists were Sibling from Europe, Christopher Esber from Australia, ffiXXed from Asia, Rahul Mishra from India and the Middle East and Altuzarra from USA – admittedly, they’re all at different levels and in my view, it’s a little unfair to compare say, Joseph Altuzarra, a fully emerged designer with Kering backing and support of the press, with Mishra, an emerging designer from India. But the jury bucked convention and something of a fairytale unfolded at this year’s competition when the “wildcard” finalist Rahul Mishra emerged as the winner. That was a delight to see, not because the other finalists were not worthy winners (the jury had a tough decision to make) but because the prize went to a designer, and region, that would arguably benefit the most from the money and the exposure.

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Every finalist took something away from the experience of the competition. Especially when facing a daunting jury that included the likes of Tim Blanks, Alexa Chung (who looked pretty awesome in Valentino), Angelica Cheung of Vogue China, Sarah Andelman from colette, Franca Sozzani and Carla Sozzani. Watching the finalists present their brand and their collection during the judging sessions, was terrifying only because I wouldn’t want to imagine myself in their shoes.

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It’s definitely worth reflecting on the participants who missed out on the prize as they were all incredibly accomplished and without getting too specific, it was fairly close all round in the scoring by the judges.  Cozette McCreery, Joe Bates and Sid Bryan of Sibling, are always up for a laugh and after the winner was announced, they were fairly philosophical about it.    Their collection, mostly taken from their A/W14-5 collection much like their menswear, was about lavishing love on old-fashioned craft.  They married that up with modern life as seen in pieces like the stand out pixelated portrait of McCreery, by none other than Lucian Freud (“Irishwoman on a Bed” does indeed depict the wonderful Cozette).  Or in the trailing godet-insert dresses constructed out of a machine-knit tube and then ripped and laddered, and patched-up and mended with hand crochet.  Machine meets handiwork has been an ongoing exploration in Sibling’s work and here you could really see the labour of love.

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Christopher Esber from Australia was another familiar face.  He’s been the rising star of Australian Fashion Week, following in the trail of the likes of Dion Lee.  Esber does intriguing textiles work that often skews conceptual.   For his Woolmark collection, he experimented with contrasts – between the soft and the hard – sporty mesh with chunk rib knit, shaggy shearling with sleek tailoring and then an unexpected use of puff print lines and grids that are bonded with fabric to create an interesting relief of draping.  The trompe l’oeil effect was a surreal and engaging.

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Can I get a whoop whoop for ffiXXed, a design duo headed up by Kain Picken and Fiona Lau.  Originally from Australia, the couple found themselves setting up their business in Shenzhen and Hong Kong, shuttling back and forth between the two hubs.  Their unisex label often coincides with art and design projects but they never lose sight of wearability.  Their Woolmark collection latched on to the theme of “homebodies” – being couch potatoes really on the most tactile of rugs and carpets.  They warped and glitched rug prints to create their jacquard knits that draped liked blankets and were accessorized by mohair sandals and cushion clutches.  On my next visit to Hong Kong, ffiXXed are definitely on my hitlist for visting.

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Joseph Altuzarra needs no introductions.  He is the darling of New York fashion week but he is savvy enough to know that being flavor of the season does not a business make.  Every collection he puts out seems assured and confident of his woman – and she really is a “woman” – refined, confident and with plenty of disposable income to splash out on Altuzarra’s intimidatingly chic-to-the-next-lev clothes.  His Woolmark collection went a touch softer, looking to Grace Kelly’s wardrobe in Rear Window or Marilyn Monroe’s penchant for cashmere sweaters.  Using needle punching, these fuzzy textures were felted on streamlined structured tops, jackets and skirts in a subtle way.  It was undoubtedly finessed.  Many in the industry had him down as a shoo-in for the prize.

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Then came Rahul Mishra from India.  Rahul Mishra doesn’t even have a website (just a Facebook page).  He was the one name that I wasn’t familiar with – in fact I can barely count to five when listing out designers based in India, which is surely something that needs to be rectified.  Having studied at the Instituto Marangoni in Milan, he only recently began his label and has been working hard to promote Indian handlooms, empowering and employing Indian Craft Community through his sustainable design.  Mishra had a fine story to tell and a mission statement to share.  It piqued the judges’ curiosity as everyone collectively felt like they were discovering something new.  He genuinely investigated new techniques to enable him to use wool to embroider garments – spinning his own yarn, thining it out and then mixing different colours together to create an ombre effect on wool jersey and wool silk mix fabrics.  None of it felt like wool because of the intricacy.  The motifs on the dresses – the lotus morphing into complex structures and cityscapes came from the very idea that wool is completely natural, and like a lotus remains unpolluted, and goes on to reach fashion capitals on its journey.  Mishra takes his job as a responsible fashion designer incredibly seriously and that shows in his work.  “I always think of the three Es when I start to create a collection: environment, employment and empowerment, and if you can think about all these things then your product will be perfect.”  How can you resist a statement like that?  His ideal for sustainable luxury is something that spoke to everyone in that judging room as we are in the process of shifting values in the luxury sector.  Mishra talked about fashion being all about product in the last century and that this century, it needs to be about participation.  And so he engages with villages all over India (“through the power of 3G” he says) to pass work to them at an above average wage.  “I work with people who may not have great privilege but who have a great skill and so it also savours crafts and skills which could otherwise be lost.”

It’s a backstory that isn’t superfluous.  It matters and that story showed in the clothes.  Regardless on their own, the collection was made up of beautiful pieces in their own right.  That’s what really got the judges oohing and aahing.  And that’s why Mishra was the unanimous outright winner.  Now these pieces will go into those aforementioned stores in August this year and Indian fashion can claim a pretty historical landmark.  Mishra’s win chimes in with the increasingly globalised state of fashion.  He sobbed a fair bit when it was announced he had won the prize at the finale show.  It brought tears to my eyes too – and for the right reasons.

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Turning a Corner

Dear blog, I miss you.  I miss the hours of photo editing and moments where I actually get to physically ponder what I’m going to write in WordPress (I lift my head up towards the ceiling, tap my chin a few times and bite my lips several times – that always seems to prompt the next sentence).  If you’re wondering where I’ve gone, it’s all here, here, here and a bit to do with this (there’s a cryptic sentence).

Longtime blog readers will know that it takes a little longer to process “the fashions” that are going on.  Especially whilst I’m in Milan, when the same names dominate headlines and there’s a dirge of copy repetition when it comes to news stories online.  So I turn to TheCorner.com and its partnership with Vogue Italia to find young talents and present them both within the publication and online on the e-commerce site.  It’s always an interesting selection that has increasingly not gone for the obvious “young” names but instead casts the net further afield.

It chimed in with the shock fairy tale story that Rahul Mishra, a fairly unknown designer from India, beat out big names like Joseph Altuzarra and Sibling to scoop the International Woolmark Prize in Milan over the weekend.  Could the LVMH prize, whose thirty finalists have recently been announced, also throw out a surprise or two, with a range of designers from the established like Simone Rocha and Meadham Kirchhoff to young graduates like Miuniku from India and Minju Kim from Korea.

I like the global aspect of fashion being reflected in the fashion capitals, and especially in Milan, where the hegemony of Italian fashion is so strong.  At the very least, you find yourself a few surprises.  The fact that seven out of ten names were completely unknown to me means I got to do some homework.  Learning.  Curiosity.  These are the things that keep interest levels up.

Unknown number one Achtland’s stitched appliqued leather motif caught my eye as soon as I entered the space.  The duo from Berlin, Oliver Luhr and Thomas Bentz founded their label on 2011 and named it after the mythical Queen Achtland.     It’s been a while since a Germany young fashion talent has been bandied about and so their work was a pleasant surprise to see, despite the shades of Dries van Noten in their current S/S 14 collection that’s available to buy.  Bevza reps up Ukraine with an unsurprisingly stark and minimal aesthetic – all clean lines and interesting plays on opacity.  I know I keep saying Kiev is on my destination hit list but now armed with a list of names, I definitely feel a lot more confident about getting the lay of the land when I do make it there  Another unknown quantity is Wadha Al Hajri’s label from Qatar, which began in 2010, inspired by the simplicity of Islamic and Bedouin prints.  Her work feels nuanced and in person, are beautiful pieces.  Designed by Phyllis Taylor, Sika from London makes dresses out of Ghanian printed fabrics.  It read a little too much like straightforward Africana to me but there’s definitely something charming about her work.

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Sika:

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Tome is probably the “biggest” name out of the lot and after a successful show in New York, where Ryan Lobo and  deft hand at fabric combinations and understanding of wardrobe essentials could really be seen, their inclusion in the line-up makes thorough sense.   In fact their standout piece from the S/S 14 collection, the plasticky purple trench has already sold out online.  I love that their pieces catch your eye without shouting too much.  It’s down to their fabric choices and ability to create a subtle bit of drama.

tomeBackstage photographs by Sonny Vandevelde

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Jewellery wise, there’s Valentina Sciumé from Milan, who only started her label of hats and jewellery last year.  Architectural and eye-catching shapes seem to be her  thing and I rather liked the solid ear cuff that she had created for her new collection.  Ryan Storer is one of the few names I’m familiar with only because of his Swarovski ear cuffs, which definitely make my chubby ear lobes look a whole lot better.  He’s still churning out that signature style but his new collection features a sweeping curve of silver and rose-gold anchored by a singular pearl.  Once again, Storer finds a striking way to adorn an ear.  Representing sunglasses, there’s British brand Finlay & Co and their wooden sunnies, beautifully crafted out of hardwoods like rosewood, walnut and ebony.  Their new collection features layers of maplewood, contrasted with coloured staining on the inside of the frames.

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On the shoe front, you have contrasts between the practical and the decorative and with something in-between.  Milan-based Farewell Footwear, who have only been going for two seasons were inspired by the Spanish espadrille but wanted to do it in their way.  For A/W 14-5, the rope sole becomes rubberised.  Their shoes are for everyday daily life and speak to a specific lifestyle.  The flatform lover in me was happy.  On the other end of the scale, you had the Sydney-based, Italian-in-origin Giannico designed by Nicolo Beretta, who plays with surreal elements like giant balls on shoes and has a penchant for Helmut Newton-esque imagery.

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Finally, Lily Kamper is another familiar name, because I remember her work from way back when she was still at the Royal College of Art creating mixed media cityscapes.  That sense of architecture and odd combinations of materials have carried through to her present jewellery line.  The work has definitely been refined with dip-dyed perspex and kitchen surfaces used to create standalone pendants or larger collage pieces on neckpieces.  Guess my prediction about her work transitioning from admirable object to functional design kind of came true!

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What snowstorm?

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Have you ever worn a cropped top when there is the snow outside? I had never had such a crazy idea before the Calvin Klein show in New York: this look was perfect in colours and proportions. For Calvin Klein this and so much more :)

Avete mai provato la pancia nuda quando fuori c’è la neve? A me non era mai passata questa idea per la mente, prima della la sfilata di Calvin Klein: non ho voluto rinunciare a questo look che avevo scelto all’inizio della settimana e che trovavo perfetto in colori e proporzioni. Per Calvin Klein questo ed altro :)

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I was wearing:

PRADA SHOES
CALVIN KLEIN TOTAL LOOK
CELINE BAG
HAIR BY REDKEN 5TH AVE

Photos by Leslie Kirchhoff

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Central Park in the snow

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Central Park all white, cherry coloured sunglasses and a look on orange tones, shot after Tommy Hilfiger show.

Central Park completamente innevato, occhiali color ciliegia ed un look sui toni dell’arancione, scattato dopo lo show di Tommy Hilfiger.

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I was wearing:

TOMMY HILFIGER SKIRT, SWEATER AND SHOES
HERMES MAXI KELLY BAG
CELINE SUNGLASSES
HAIR BY REDKEN 5TH AVE

Photos by Leslie Kirchhoff

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Splash of colour in New York

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And while I’m walking from one show to the next one in Milano here is another one of the looks shot in New York.. I was wearing a total black look with boyfriend jeans from the Louis Vuitton s/s 2014 collection and I couldn’t opt for a more colourful location than the wall on Bowery :)

E mentre corro da una sfilata all’altra qui a Milano ecco un altro dei look scattati a New York.. Indossavo un look total black con boyfriend jeans della sfilata primavera/estate 2014 di Louis Vuitton e, come location, non potevo che optare per il muro super colorato della Bowery :)

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I was wearing:

LOUIS VUITTON S/S 2014 TOTAL LOOK
HAIR BY REDKEN 5TH AVE

Photos by Leslie Kirchhoff

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The fishtail braid and Varsity jacket

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The longest braid I’ve ever tried? It was done by Redken during New York fashionweek, and mixed to Jimmy Choo over the knee boots and Opening Ceremony Varsity Jacket :)

La treccia più lunga che io abbia mai provato? Fatta da Redken durante la fashionweek di New York, ed abbinata a stivali Jimmy Choo e Varsity Jacket di Opening Ceremony :)

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I was wearing:

JIMMY CHOO BOOTS
MSGM DRESS
CAIA RINGS
OPENING CEREMONY VARSITY JACKET
ZARA MAXI SCARF
SAINT LAURENT BAG
RAY-BAN WAYFARER SUNGLASSES
HAIR BY REDKEN 5TH AVE

Photos by Leslie Kirchhoff

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Chiara Ferragni as Redken global fashion ambassador

Do you remember when, a little more than a year ago, I was announcing my “title” as Redken global fashion ambassador? Here I am, a year later, with much stronger, longer and beautiful hair and becoming Redken’s global fashion ambassador for the second year in a row :)
This means, among the other things, to always have my hair done by Redken during all New York, Milan and Paris fashionweeks.
Would you like to know what my typical day is in this time of the year? Watch this video filmed last September in New York and tell me what you think about it :)
P.S: Redken opens from tomorrow a pop-up store in Corso Como in which it offers fast blowdries for fashionweek, try it! I’m going to be there tomorrow from 7.30 pm!

Vi ricordate quando, poco più di un anno fa, annunciavo timidamente il mio ruolo come ambasciatrice di Redken? Eccomi, dopo un anno e con i capelli sempre più belli, lunghi e naturali,  nominata per la seconda volta “Redken global fashion ambassador” :)
Questo vuol dire, tra le altre cose, essere sempre pettinata dal team di Redken durante le fashionweek di New York, Milano e Parigi. Volete sapere come è una mia giornata tipo in questo periodo? Guardate questo video girato lo scorso Settembre a New York e ditemi cosa ne pensate :)
P.S. Redken apre domani 19 Febbraio un pop-up store in Corso Como in cui offre pieghe veloci e gratuite per la settimana della moda, fateci un salto! Io sarò li a conoscervi dalle 19.30 domani!

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Winter wonderland in New York

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The worst part of New York fashionweek? The cold breeze and the temperature, -8°.
The best part of New York fashionweek? The snow that covered the whole city making it a winter wonderland, perfect location for photos :)
Here is another one of my looks, completely in black and white. My hair was once again done by Redken, for which I’m for the second year the global fashion ambassador, and super proud of my “title” :)

La parte peggiore della fashionweek di New York? Il vento gelido ed i più o meno costanti -8°.
La parte migliore della fashionweek di New York? La neve che ha coperto tutta la città rendendola completamente bianca ed una perfetta location per le foto :)
Ecco un altro dei miei look, completamente bianco e nero. I capelli sono come sempre stati pettinati da Redken, per cui per il secondo anno sono global fashion ambassador, e fierissima del mio ruolo :)

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I was wearing:

PRADA SHOES
STEFANEL TROUSERS
ROBERTO CAVALLI COAT
VINTAGE HAT
CHANEL 2.55 BAG
HAIR BY REDKEN 5TH AVE

Photos by Andrew Arthur

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All pink everything in New York

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Came back last morning to Milan, and already I find myself in a hurry through all the meetings before Milan fashionweek madness.
Little by little also on the blog all the looks worn for New York fashionweek, starting with this one wearing the golden slip-ons of my new capsule collection, “The Blonde Salad x Steve Madden” (in stores and online now).

Tornata a Milano ieri, e naturalmente sono già di corsa tra tutti gli appuntamenti prima dell’inizio della fashionweek milanese.
Pian piano ecco anche qui tutti i look indossati per la settimana della moda di New York, a partire da questo in cui indossavo le slip-on della mia capsule collection appena uscita, “The Blonde Salad x Steve Madden” (negli store Steve Madden ed online).

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I was wearing:

THE BLONDE SALAD X STEVE MADDEN GOLDEN SLIP-ONS (available on Stevemadden.com and Victoriassecret.com)
MSGM TROUSERS
MSGM SWEATER
DELFINA DELETTREZ EARRINGS
THE ROW BY LINDA FARROW SUNGLASSES
CELINE BOX BAG
HAIR BY REDKEN 5TH AVE

Photos by Gregorio Capineri Tosetti

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New York Sunday morning

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A Sunday morning in New York, while I was getting ready for the first shows of the day. Those moments in which the light is perfect and you only feel like shooting and shooting again. My partners in crime: one of my dearest friend behind the lens, a leather jacket and black lingerie.

Una domenica mattina a New York, mentre mi preparavo per le prime sfilate della giornata. Quei momenti in cui la luce è perfetta ed hai solo voglia di scattare ed ancora scattare. Complice uno dei miei più cari amici dietro l’obiettivo, una giacca di pelle e lingerie nera.

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I was wearing:

LAER LEATHER SHORTS
PATRIZIA PEPE LEATHER JACKET
HAIR BY REDKEN 5TH AVE

Photos by Gregorio Capineri Tosetti

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London calling

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Picture by Mattias Swenson

LONDON. After two cancelled flights, lots of delays and over 30 hours sans sleep, I’m finally in London and I can’t put into words how much I’ve missed this city! This morning I was finally reunited with my BFF Andy whom I haven’t seen for 6 insanely long months which we celebrated with some afternoon tea at Liberty’s. I’m only in town for a couple of days before heading to Stockholm on Monday but really wish I could stay longer. London is one of my absolute favorite cities and I’m beyond excited for this weekend. Follow me on instagram @carolinaengman for lots of pictures from my London adventures!

In Los Angeles with Mango

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As Street Style is on the spot during New York fashion week (the most freezing one so far!), it’s funny to think back to those street style pics that I shot during the spring-winter weather of LA.. when i could mix some of my fav accessories and the new Mango summer collection… Let’s get away for a sec!

Proprio mentre lo Street Style è sotto i riflettori della New York fashion week (la più fredda di sempre!), sorrido pensando a queste foto street-style che ho scattato nell’ inverno primaverile di LA.. quando potevo mixare i miei accessori preferiti e la nuova collezione di Mango.. A tutta estate!

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I was wearing:

MANGO JACKET
MANGO TANK TOP
MANGO SHORTS

Photos by Gregorio Capineri Tosetti

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Baby, It’s Cold Outside

>> I have weather-talk fatigue.  I’m sick of talking about how cold I am.  I’m sick of other people talking about how cold they are.  During this fashion week (month) period when small talk is employed as a distracting method of being social, I’m banning myself from weather talk.  After all, it can’t get anymore extreme than it has been in New York.  The other three cities in comparison will feel positively balmy.  Still, I may as well use this post as one last splurge on the weather convo before I shut it down completely.  If only to give thanks to the wardrobe heroes that have got me through what I think are the harshest fashion week weather conditions, I’ve ever experienced.

I can’t speak for those girls who have been braving sub-zero temperatures in bare legs, open-toes and wee blazers over sleeveless dresses, but my tactic is simple.  Heat Tech x two, sometimes three.  Thick John Lewis school tights x one, sometimes two.  Plus socks.  Hats of all sorts to keep the head warm – beanies or anything tight fitting work best.  And shoes with some semblance of grip – I packed two pairs of Nikes, some Nokian rain boots, with the only raised/heightened shoes being the Prada creepers.  Then there are the layers.  Many of them being coats which took up 25kg all by themselves.  My heroic knights in shining armour included the aforementioned Shrimps fraggle furry awesomeness, Alan Taylor‘s asymmetric tweed coat and a sneak peek blue symbols coat from NY label Skotison‘s A/W 14-5 collection.  Tights, flats and coats.  Apologies if that’s coming over all mother-knows-best and slightly boring, but to the scantily clad, I am offering my services to smother you with my layers.  Yes, you there with the crop top, denim cut-offs and goose pimpled skin.

AKS1063-1042x693Photograph by Adam Katz Sinding for W Magazine

new-york-street-style-fashion-week-look-febbraio-2014_hg_temp2_m_full_lPhotograph by Street FSN for Grazia.it

Susie-Lau.nocrop.w1800.h1330 (3)Photograph by Koo for The Cut

nyfw-street-style-9_101632413042Photograph by Phil Oh for Vogue.com - Wearing J.W. Anderson top and trousers, Nike liquid metal trainers, Shrimps coat, Reece Hudson backpack, P6 beanie

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020714_Tommy_Ton_rtw_Fall_2014_slide_019Photograph by Tommy Ton for Style.com

Susie-Lau.nocrop.w1800.h1330 (2)Photograph by Koo for The Cut - Wearing Silver Spoon Attire hat, Shaun Samson top, Tome cape, Suno Swarovski embellished trousers, Prada shoes, Deadly ponies bag, Louis Vuitton scarf

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Susie-Lau.nocrop.w1800.h1330 (1)Photograph by Koo for The Cut - Wearing Band of Outsiders hat, Skotison coat, Lucky Chouette dress, Push Button trousers, Reece Hudson backpack, Nike liquid silver trainers, 

AKS7756-1042x693Photograph by Adam Katz Sinding for W Magazine

020714_Tommy_Ton_rtw_Fall_2014_slide_054Photograph by Tommy Ton for Style.com

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Susie-Lau-2.nocrop.w1800.h1330Photograph by Koo for The Cut - Wearing Alan Taylor coat, Sacai dress, & Other Stories trousers, Kara backpackNokian x Julia Lundsten boots, J.W. Anderson hat,Patternity x Chinti & Parker scarf

On the Fringe

Blame it on watching Wolf of Wall Street right before I left for New York.  Or reading this Moby article on the Guardian.  “New York is exclusively about success,” says Moby in his article about why he moved to L.A.  “It’s success that has been fed steroids and vitamin B. There’s a sense that New Yorkers never fail, but if they do, they’re exorcised from memory.”  So now I roam the streets and shows in New York, thinking only about these finite lines of success and failure.  Trouble is, success in fashion in this city doesn’t necessarily marry up with the best talent that’s out there.  You’re struck by not just the sheer volume of shows, but the sheer amount of dross that is out there – lauded, applauded and doing commercially well it would seem.  It’s dross not because they’re badly made clothes – but largely because it’s all polish and no personality.  Whilst it’s not right to criticise designers and their position of privilege, when you find much of these soulless collections are funded by personal connections and wealth, you wonder where the meritocracy is.  Would these collections stand a chance on-schedule in Milan or Paris, hell, even London?

The good guys out there have been making a stand though.  Made Fashion Week are constantly scouting and supporting young talent and have built up a strong roster of names.  If they’re not quite ready for a full blown show at Milk Studios, then a smaller presentation at nearby Standard hotel is a good platform and that’s exactly what Eckhaus Latta did.  It takes a level of adjustment when looking at Mike Eckhaus and Zoe Latta’s homespun pieces, made out of deadstock fabrics.  There are imperfections – both deliberate and accidental.  But there’s much to be read in the strangely sensual ensembles made out of surplus blankets, faux suede and upholstery velvet, amped up by their hand-loomed knits.  “Looking at the person next to you, laying my coat down on the seat next to me.  We and we alone,” reads the accompanying press notes.  The collection’s tactile textures move you.  “You were almost naked seen by the light of the refrigerator.  You were wrapping towel around your waist holding your breath.”  And so on and so forth.  The awkwardness and oddness is endearing.  When they send out a boy covered in a light layer of green paint and knitted underpants or an older woman (she looked swell in pink velvet) or girls wearing specially created metal retainers in their mouth, it’s not diversity for diversity’s sake.  It’s a strange narrative that is kinda, sorta, beautiful.

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Also on the fringes is Lindsay Degen.  She once worked for London knit duo Cooperative Designs and that connection can be seen in her awesomely uplifting, childish scrawly knitwear.  Degen’s collections aren’t her main schtick but rather her collaborations have funded her work, such as her collaboration with Victoria’s Secret, where she created smiley-faced, LOL/OMG-emblazoned knitwear for the show last year.  Her presentations are therefore a calling card for further collaborations.  This season, Degen was inspired by a plastic yarn knit that in the making felt like magic.  So the process of knitting is brought to life with a Stomp-style performance of knitters at their machines, swiping back and forth, in time with the soundtrack.  Rainbows, magic eyes and that raved up aesthetic, which Degen specialises in all come together in euphoric harmony.  I’ll happily take personality over polish any day.  Those achieving both at NYFW are sadly few and far between.

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The Blonde Salad x Steve Madden: complete campaign and collection

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Here we go: The Blonde Salad x Steve Madden capsule collection is officially in Steve Madden stores and on Stevemadden.com (and from February 10th It will also be in other estores with worldwide shipping).
The official launch party was organized with an event before fashionweek season last Tuesday in New York (soon all the photos) and now I can share with you guys all the campaign shots and the 17 different models of the capsule collection. Which are your favourites?
Thanks for the support and the amazing feedback on this new adventure :)

Ci siamo: la capsule collection The Blonde Salad x Steve Madden è finalmente arrivata negli store Steve Madden e su Stevemadden.com (e dal 10 Febbraio la troverete anche in tanti altri estore che consegnano in tutto il mondo).
Il party di lancio ufficiale è stato organizzato lo scorso martedi con un evento di inizio fashionweek a New York (prestissimo le foto) ed ora non mi rimane che pubblicare sul blog gli scatti della campagna e tutti i 17 modelli della capsule collection. Quali sono i vostri preferiti?
Grazie del supporto e del fantastico feedback in questa nuova avventura :)


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THE BLONDE SALAD X STEVE MADDEN

Campaign photos by Andrew Arthur

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