Category Archives: Travel

Tokyo Vintage Trail

After London, Tokyo comes a close second when it comes to buying vintage.  I haven’t shopped the world over to give an accurate comparison but as “select” and “curated” vintage goes, Tokyo can be hard to beat.   That will sound odd as Tokyo sits in a continent that is by and large vintage-shy (fear of wearing dead people’s garments affects the swathe of the Chinese for instance, as I grew up defending vintage to relatives).  But there’s got to be an explanation as to why I come home with a trunk of secondhand gems every time I go.  Even my two day trip for Dior last week yielded more than a few things.  There’s the secondhand designer finds of course, mainly down to the resale chains like Ragtag and Kind.  But there’s also unique vintage shops, who have gone to America and Europe to scour fairs, markets and dealers, and seem to have found all the bona fide goodies with their early bird diligence.  They then create specialized vintage emporiums that are a far cry from many of the 70s’ polyester and 80s’ tat ridden overpriced stores that London falls victim to.  Not to say that London doesn’t have real deal vintage places – but another advantage Tokyo vintage spots seem to have is that they’re less picked over and new goodie drops feel like they’re more frequent.

I wanted to highlight a few of my favourite places and recent finds that make that pricy trip all the more worth it as I increasingly drift towards vintage that feels special and more often than not, are veritably old (as in dating back pre 1950).

Birthdeath – I didn’t find out about Shibuya vintage spot until this year when Nagi from the ever-awesome Disco Nail directed me there.  Browsing the store and their website, it feels like they’ve cultivated a lifestyle as opposed to merely a vintage store, where record rarities meets pristine Victoriana and 70s-80s new wave garms.  The breadth of periods covered by the selection is broad but the common thread is that every piece feels purposefully chosen.  A quick browse begot me a 1930s’ ruched sleeved capelet and a 1920s’ geometric printed slip dress.  They also sell new menswear labels like blackmeans, which has its own counterculture thing going on.  Birthdeath is the sort of music meets fashion hub that you’d think would be more prevalent in London (or in the UK in general) but weirdly isn’t.

Shibuya NC bldg 1F, 1-9-4 Jinnan, Shibuya-ku Tokyo

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J’Antiques – Everybody and their mum who has been to Tokyo will know J’Antiques.  It’s the equivalent of Rellik in London.  What’s interesting about J’Antiques is the equal billing that both menswear and womenswear get.  Actually in general, vintage in Tokyo is freely available for both sexes unlike in other cities where it’s normally weighted in favour of women.  But J’Antiques excels in sheer selection.  Rare denim, seriously old workwear, beautiful Victorian to 1930s’ cotton lawn dresses, East European embroidery, old Chinese robes… basically anything that has decorative and historical heft can be found here.  It can be expensive but the things I’ve found like this tartan blanket dress was fairly reasonable.  And if absolutely no garments take your fancy, the stack of quality French linens by the front are definitely worth rifling through.

2-25-13 Kamimeguro, Meguro-ku, Tokyo

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Jeanne Valet – This is one of the first vintage places that I stumbled into by accident.  It’s worth looking upwards inside this tiny shop where clothes hang high from the ceiling.  Also ask the helpful (and English-speaking – a rarity sometimes in Tokyo!) staff if you’re looking for something specific and they’ll climb up into their turret to get it from their stockroom.  Victorian, old military, 1960-70s’ designer pieces, rare scarves and men’s workwear are its specialties.  The last time I was there, I was vaguely tempted by an early 20th century Shakesperean stage costume but opted for a men’s striped denim shirt instead.

13-6 Daikanyama-cho, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo

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Toro – Somewhere between Shibuya and Harajuku up on the 4th floor, Toru is a little bit hidden and in its teensy square footage, they get a lot in.  Everything from a Victorian corseted jacket to a 1960s’ Oleg Cassini two-piece suit can be found and every piece has been cleaned, repaired and restored properly.  I indulged in my love of intricate smocking with a dusky pink dress with beautiful folksy detailing.  Actually, I’ve never not found an instant !Love! piece whenever I’ve been in.  As with much of Tokyo’s shopping, bar or restaurant scene, sometimes the best places can be found on higher floors, away from expensive ground rent.

4F, 6-19-17 Jingumae, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo

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 6 (Roku)This place is a bit of a mystery to Google in English.  I can’t even give you an exact address other than it’s near Nakameguro station.  It’s signposted by a simple “6” sticker on the door and on the 2nd and 3rd floor you’ll find the most amazing collection of rarities – military, denim, sportswear, leathers, varsity jackets – whatever category it is, they come up trumps with brilliant examples.  That might sound very menswear-centric but that’s precisely what makes it so interesting to go through meticulously (I once spent two hours here…) because every piece has its own possibilities to be worn as womenswear.  When I was going through my Chinese dragons fixation, I found this blue silk shirt – the owner told me it was worn by servants in the Qing Dynasty court.  I found that tale a bit far-fetched but I do like that it’s different and older than the embroidered dragon robes and shirts that you tend to find dating to the mid-20th century.  If you can find your way there, you won’t be disappointed.  Long may it last that Six doesn’t let itself be known with websites, Twitter updates and all of that new-fandangled promotion stuff.

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Enchanted Afternoon

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As we embark on a new year, I can’t help but reflect on some amazing experiences I’ve had over the last few years I’ve been blogging. September 2013 was a month one major dream of mine came true; I was invited by a few of my favorite designers to attend New York Fashion Week. My college years were spent studding to be a buyer – ever since I was a young teenager pining for the fashion industry, buying was a direction I always saw myself going in. I also thought this was my ticket to fashion shows world wide! Paths change as they tend to but I still ended up sitting in those seats admiring the looks going down the runway and dreaming of things I’d love to wear on the blog.

This past fashion show season, one designer’s collection in particular really spoke to me with their original prints, luxurious fabrics, rich textures and sophisticated silhouettes; and that was New York designer, Sachin & Babi’s 2015 NOIR Pre-Fall collection. The collection is a breath taking ensemble of hyper-hued florals like the skirt I am wearing here. The silhouettes of each piece perfectly marry classic femininity with that fresh modern edge through the use of graphic color blocking and sheer paneling.

As I sat there admiring this Alice in Wonderland meets Marie Antoinette collection, all I could think about was how quickly I’d be able to get these pieces into my closet. My first thought was the online luxury retailer, Moda Operandi. Have you heard of them before? They are the only online destination where you can actually preorder looks straight from the runway through daily trunk shows they host. I had my fingers crossed that Sachin & Babi’s NOIR collection would be available and guess what, it finally is!

As of this last Monday, December 15 – December 22nd their collection is exclusively available for pre-order at Moda Operandi. To see the entire collection, head over to the Sachin & Babi NOIR boutique. I’ve also selected a few of my favorite looks below for you to peruse from. The pieces are perfect for your upcoming holiday soirees, spring weddings or bridal showers that I know you need to start shopping for!

 Photos by Fred Cipoletti 

Esprit Dior Tokyo Part Two

Part two of my Dior Tokyo experience and into the vast Ryogkoku Kokugikan Sumo Stadium we go.  I can’t communicate how vast the scale was.  Dior venues under Raf Simons’ tenure have been lavish, ornate but never vast on this level.  It felt like the “biggest” Dior show I had been to because of the sheer number of people there coupled with the mega height of the vaulted ceiling of this stadium from which “snow” fell through a futuristic suspended grid structure.  Official numbers said 800 people were there but it felt like more because technically the venue can hold 10,000 people.

It was vast for a reason though.  It wasn’t just to wow the selected journalists that were flown in for the show.  On the upper tiers of the stadium sat Tokyo’s younger generation – the Shibuya and Harajuku kids and IT-people that are fast becoming influencers in their own right.  They’re the sort of peeps that you wouldn’t see at a regular Japan Fashion Week show (JFW’s cachet of cool is an up and down affair but that’s another story) but here they were, made to feel inclusive and invited at one of the biggest Dior shows ever to be staged.   After the show, Sidney Toledano was eager to talk up Japan’s strength as a market, asking us to disregard recent news that it has entered recession again.  The Japanese know and are ready to spend on luxury and have done so for a very long time and Dior are ready to reciprocate.

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ESPRIT-DIOR-TOKYO-2015-CELEBRITES-Susie-LauHead to toe Dior… with all-night partying, karaoke and sushi breakfast at Tsukiji market in mind – Have to thank Emily Sheffield from Vogue, Jess Cartney-Morley from the Guardian and journalist/stylist Gianluca Longo for being well up for a night out in Tokyo.

Those sentiments were echoed by Raf Simons himself, as someone who knows Tokyo well, with Japan being a primary supporter of his own namesake brand.  The collection began before Tokyo had even been discussed as a destination for the show.  Simons has been building up his repertoire at Dior based on ideals of seeking modernity – he’s done so by exploring both Dior’s past and more recently, the distant past in his last ready to wear and haute couture shows.  For this particular collection, he thrusts us back into the present and into his own nuanced observations of Tokyo street style from the well-proliferated images of Fruits magazine to actually being in Tokyo many times himself and seeing street style tribes shift from place to place.  This put him in good stead to avoid any cultural cliches and of course, he moves as far away from say, Monsieur Dior’s Hokusai and Utamaro-drenched vision of Japan.

“Tokyo is a place that has been and is so constantly inspiring to me,” Simons says in the press notes.  “Particularly in terms of the liberty people take for themselves in how they dress, there is nowhere else like it: the freedom of styles, the new architecture of clothing that you can see forming in the street as well as in city’s fashion design history…. it’s a place that is both extreme and exhilarating.”

These are sentiments that I fully concur with having been hugely inspired by my trips to Tokyo and it’s clear that the freedom and liberty in Tokyo street style was translated into the layering of the collection.  A sequinned polo neck under a strapless bias cut gown with chunky boots?  Why not!  Likewise, school uniform-esque checked shifts over sequinned bloomers?  Cho kawaii!  And I mean that not in the “cute” sense but in the general way that the word is used to describe anything vaguely cool.  Traditionally outdoors-y fabrics employed on a plethora of outerwear pieces points to the way that “heritage” wear has exploded in Japan, mainly in menswear.  When rendered as dramatic opera coats and zip-up flared-out dresses with sculptural knee high boots though, that street style trope is subverted.  Same goes for Simons’ use of sequins.  He admitted he is normally a sequins-hater but when used on Aran and Argyle knits and on polo neck pieces, he nullifies the glam and evening aspect of this motif.

The language of Dior, namely in the Bar jacket, faintly persists but is also deconstructed so that the shape lingers on in waxed cotton jackets and coats and duffles and bombers.  After the show, Simons said this was outerwear that could be chucked on the floor and become an old favourite over time.

In a way it’s easy to see a parallel between the freedom and contrasts seen within Japanese streetstyle and the way that Simons has been incorporating a similar sense of freedom and unexpected contrasts within Dior’s house DNA, in order to push its aesthetic forward into the 21st century.  This collection falls in line within the trajectory that Simons has been building up at the house – one that has been exciting to witness.

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0E5A0846The graphic eye created by Peter Phillips that I’ll be attempting soon…

Dior are banking on this love letter to Japan to translate anywhere in the world.  They made it big so that the word would spread and by now, fans of the Dior universe will have heard about the sumo stadium, the fleet of Dior taxis and of course, the clothes.  Dior aren’t officially calling it a pre-fall collection and instead it has its own fancy name – Esprit Dior Tokyo collection but that doesn’t stop it from being a collection that will be on the rails longer than the main ready to wear collections and that it will have an appeal that goes far and beyond Tokyo.

As the afterparty pulsated on through the night and we moved into the intimate rooms of the kooky bar Trump Room, then into a random karaoke place in Shibuya and finally queueing up at Sushi Daiwa in Tsukiji market, dressed in my own head to toe Dior outfit (a mish mash of AW14 pieces), it felt like Simons’ vision for the house was being truly vindicated.  Breaking out of the house’s remit of occasion wear will reap rewards as a new generation of Dior customers can get in on the action, stumbling around the streets in bar bombers, panelled flat chelsea boots and layered up in sequinned polo necks to get through the cold nights.  You could already see these clothes in situ and on-the-go and that’s more exhilarating than any static lavish ball gown.

Esprit Dior Tokyo Part 1

I was going to be longwinded about recapping my brief trip to Tokyo for Dior and do it all in one big hella long post.  Despite having only spent two days in the city, it warrants more.  We experienced Dior’s history and Japan’s tradition by day and then Raf Simons’s vision of the future for the house and a look at Tokyo’s in-flux present by night.  I therefore want to be extra careful to separate the “experience” from the “show.  The former ran the course of how these “far-flung” maison shows normally operate – the experience was about giving us a flavour of the locale we’re in – in other words, Japanese culture of our collective imagining.  The latter though ran far, far away from cultural cliche.  For the show, officially called “Esprit Dior Tokyo”, Raf Simons presented a collection filled with nuanced observations and layers (literal ones too) connected with his own personal experiences of Tokyo.

That had nothing to do with irresistible details like Dior grey taxi seat covers inside specially branded Japanese taxis or the beautifully decorated restaurant where we had a lengthy kaiseki lunch complete with New Look printed lanterns and origami table pieces.  The collection also throttled away from the gowns and occasion wear that made up the majority of the Esprit Dior Tokyo exhibition in Ginza that is open to the public (for free!) until 4th January.  It felt like a familiar book, immersing oneself into Dior’s history.  The facts and the images and many of the silhouettes felt textbook.

What was newly emphasised in this particular exhibition was Monsieur Dior and the house’s specific connection with Japan.  He was enamoured with Japanese culture and art, and once likened Japonaiserie heroes Hokusai and Utamaru to his Sistine Chapel, hence why he’d give dresses name like “Jardin Japonais” and feature cherry tree motifs.  The Dior-Japan connotations don’t stop there as we’re treated to photos of Margot Fonteyn in a Dior costume for Madame Butterfly and Princess Michiko wearing Dior for her wedding in 1959.  In Dior’s successors of course Japan came alive most notably in John Galliano’s stupendously lavish spring summer 2007 haute couture collection as well as in Raf Simons’ autumn winter 2013 haute couture collection.  The contrast couldn’t be more stark when you see the silhouettes in situ as Hokusai waves flourish over voluminous opera coat with pleated bodice and collar by Galliano next to Simons’ pared back interpretation of kimono and obi folds and shibori techniques.

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The rest of the exhibition ran the gamut of Dior 101.  The bar jacket and its architecture was exposed with digital skeletal analysis.  A showcase of the petites mains that work behind the scenes in Dior’s atelier demonstrating pattern cutting.  From a commercial perspective of course, Miss Dior and J’Adore Dior took centre stage too to add a more tangible aspect to the exhibition.  Cue Dior workers busy tying up ribbons and gold thread around perfume bottles.

Running throughout the entire exhibition were new and unseen photographs by Patrick Demarchelier, who has created a second volume of portraits of iconic Dior haute couture looks from Christian Dior to Raf Simons, out now on Rizzoli.  They breathed life into the space when used as the backdrops to mannequins and display cases but also much credence to Raf Simons’ tenure at Dior.  His work for the house isn’t so much a straightforward continuation on from his predecessors but a fresh chapter that returns to the qualities, which underlined Dior right from the start – the new and the modern. That’s what I’ll be talking about when I get on to part two of this Tokyo sojourn.

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Basara Face

>> I know you guys are bored of my beginning a post with “I’m in Tokyo!”  I have hear a loud collective *yawn* being emitted from the unknown outer galaxy of “readership”.  But… but… I would argue that Tokyo with Dior is a completely different experience from my usual ramshackle second hand designer/vintage shopping trail interrupted by wolfed down meals of ramen and gyoza.

I’m here in Tokyo for the Dior’s first pre-fall show.  The ties between Monsieur Dior and Japan have already been well emphasised in all the lovely printed paraphernalia and trinkets that were all laid out in my hotel room when I arrived.  It’s all Hokusai paintings, Utamaru nudes and women walking daintily in geta sandals and kimonos.  It’s the traditional Japan of most people’s imaginations as opposed to the one filled with kook and oddities that I normally encounter.

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As we only have a few days here and there are many a Tokyo virgin in amongst our press group, I’ve somehow taken on the role as the unofficial guide.  It’s like the blind leading the blind.  It’s easy to impress though.  A quick whizz through Shibuya scramble crossing, 109 and Tokyu Hands was enough to elicit “Ooohs” and “Aaahs”.  Even I’ll get swept up in it from time to time, even though  I have visited a ridiculous number of times (comparatively speaking anyway…).  In the beauty section of Tokyu Hands, we all got a bit mesmerised by these printed face masks.  Oh, the novelty!  Want to look like Frankenstein or Dracula whilst your face is made supple with hydrolysed collagen and vitamin C derivative?  I know it’s easy to exoticise everything here but honestly, this is definitely an instance of “Only in Japan…”

The one that piqued my interest though was the “Fashion Face Pack”, created by none other than Kansai Yamamoto.  I instantly recognised the painted faces as the ones I photographed at the brilliant Fashion in Motion last year where, Yamamoto unleashed the ‘Basara’ spirit in London’s V&A Museum.  Loosely meaning “out-there” or “slant”, the basara spirit is not for the faint hearted, even as I’m lounging in my hotel robe getting my face refreshed with lavender.  Yamamoto’s ‘kumadori’ kabuki actor make-up flecked with clashing shades of ‘Japanese goldflower’ yellow, ‘pale chive’ blue and ‘willow leaf’ green is definitely one way of combatting flailing jeg-lagged faces.  Or to make a lazy comparison, it makes you look vaguely like FKA Twigs LP1 album cover.

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kansaiMake-up as seen at Kansai Yamamoto Fashion in Motion, Nov 2013

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It’s one of those “Only in Japan” examples that you can’t help but love.  An inactive fashion legend honoured by a beauty face mask?  Why not?  It’s certainly a different way of going about your beauty regime that I’d personally love to find in the aisles of Boots…

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40 things about Alps

image-9011. Maria (Julie Andrews) and the Von Trapp children in the 1965 Sound of Music Film

022. Heidi House in Salastrains – St. Moritz

033. Tyrolean mountain air, green meadows , happy cows and a breathtaking mountain panorama, experience Waidring, Tirol

044. Europe‘s highest botanical garden, Jardin botanique alpin Saussurea

Schermata 12-2456994 alle 17.37.115.  Edelweiss

066. The relaxing Cambrian Hotel, Dorfstrasse 7, 3715 Adelboden, Switzerland

077. Rosa Alpina, Relais&Chateux resort in San Cassiano in Badia (BZ) Italy

088. Gran Paradiso National Park 

099. Tappeinerweg – Tappeiner promenade, 6km through Meran

Schermata 12-2456994 alle 17.43.1010. The Glacier Express is an express train connecting railway stations of the two major mountain resorts of St. Moritz and Zermatt in the Swiss Alps

01111. 50’s Milka Alpine milk chocolate poster

01212. A canal in Annecy, the Venice of Savoie

01313. Zermatt, the car-free village in the upper Valais, Switzerland

01414. Der Bozner Christkindlmarkt , Bozen Christmas Market

01515. Cover of Thomas Mann’s  The Magic Mountain book 

01616. Neuschwanstein Castle: Castle in the Bavarian Alps 

01717. At 4810 m (15,774 ft), Mont Blanc is the highest summit of Western Europe situated between the French and the Italian Alps

18. Chairlift to Monte Cristallo 1960’s, Cortina d ‘Ampezzo, Italy

01919. Pasterze Glacier, Austria – the longest glacier in Austria and in the Eastern Alps

02020. Little white church on an island in the center of an emerald green mountain lake, Bled, Slovenia

02121. L’attrice francese Brigitte Bardot a Cortina D’Ampezzo nel 1958

02322. First Winter Olympic Games in Charmonix, 1924

Schermata 12-2456994 alle 17.38.4523. Bagni di Bormio Spa Resort
Via Bagni Nuovi, 7 – 23038 Valdidentro (SO)

02424. The Aletsch Glacier, the largest glacier in the Alps

02525. A place of well-being at the heart of the Dolomites – Alpina Dolomites, Alpe Di Siusi, (BZ) 

02626. South Tyrol Museum of Archaeology, Bozen

02727. The Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art of Trento and Rovereto (MART)

02828. A great vegan Apfelstrudel version 

02929. Amazing design for the rooms of the unique Naturhotel Waldklause in the Oetz Valley

03030. The Pink Panther by Blake Edwards (1963) , set in Cortina d’Ampezzo

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA31. At Hotel Des Alpes in Madonna di Campiglio,  you can find a portrait of Empress Elisabeth of Austria 

03232. Tirol ribbons with hearts and edelweiss

03333. Experience the real Mozartkugeln at Café Fürst, Salzburg

Schermata 12-2456994 alle 17.41.2134. Flohmarkt Bürkliplatz Zürich , fleamarket in the “ portal to the Alps “ , Zurich 

Schermata 12-2456994 alle 17.44.3235. ALPENZOO – Experience the animal world in the alps, Innsbruck Alpine Zoo

03636. Swiss Alpine Museum, Helvetiaplatz 4, 3005 Bern, Switzerland 

03737. Tyrolean dresses

03838. Gourmetstüberl USINGA, small gourmet restaurant with 18 seats on the north-eastern shore of lake Chiemsee. 

03939. Idrija Lace, One of the most adored Slovenian traditional crafts

04040. Ospitale Restaurant: via Chiave, 68 – 32043 Cortina d’Ampezzo, Italy

Simplicity

Lately, I’ve been trying to simplify my life. I want simplicity in everything. Like, even Homeland annoys me because it’s too complicated.

Everyday life, beauty, clothes. I really don’t feel like worrying about any of it. I’m leaving today for three days in Miami, and my ultimate goal would be to fit all three days into my handbag (except that since I’ve simplified everything, my bag is tiny) (ok, maybe just fit all three days in my carry on) (ok fine, in my big suitcase, then — I guess I still have a lot to learn about living simply).


(And plus, if I only had three items of clothing, this would be a pretty boring fashion blog, right?)(Even if honestly — what’s all the rage right now to say you want to have less, which is proof that this post is not at all anti-fashion.)

This process has been in the works for awhile now — I told you about downsizing my wardrobe, remember? Well I enjoyed that so much that now it’s taking over my whole life.

My bag.

I only carry one bag now. It’s my favorite one — my Lulu bag by Saint Laurent, and I always have it with me. I don’t care about the others, this one is enough for me. It’s sublime, it goes with everything, and it’s not too recognizable, which I love.

You can’t fit much in it. So that forced me to rethink my wallet. I was tired of having a huge thing in my purse full of receipts and useless stuff. I figure if guys (guys are like old people — they’re right about a lot of things!!!)(oh there, I should write a post about that next time) can go out without a handbag, I should be able to go out without a wallet the size of Kanye’s Hummer.

So I got rid of everything and bought a tiny Comme des Garçons wallet which totally fits my needs. And my goal is to manage to make it work with nothing but a Smythson card holder in the near future — that’s how liberated I’ll be from all these base earthly concerns.

So now all I take with me every day is my phone, my wallet, my headphones, my keys, and a lip gloss. And honestly, I don’t miss any of the other stuff. Well, except for chewing gum, maybe. And blotting papers. And my compact. And hand cream. And a scarf.

Beauty.

Ok, we’re not going to talk about my haircut again, I think you’ve understood by now — it’s really super easy, and plus, the more Clyde, my hair stylist, gets to know me, the faster and more beautiful it is every time, and we don’t even have to talk to understand each other anymore.

As for makeup, I asked Tatyana, my favorite makeup artist (who told me “You really don’t know how to put on makeup” the first time I met her! And like any good French girl, I love when people tell it to me straight, even more when it’s at first encounter) to do two looks for me. One for night time, one for day time. We picked out my colors together, and I got rid of everything else — all the old tubes and tubs that were just collecting dust. I’ll show you what we picked out soon if you want!!!

Clothes.

I’ve already talked to you about this, so I won’t go on and on, but this is another area of my life where I keep simplifying. I just bought five Uniqlo sweaters. Cashmere, v-neck, neutral colors. They go with everything and even if it’s not quite a Bompard (do you know where I can find Bompard sweaters in New York?) it honestly makes my life so much easier.

Those, and a few pairs of well-cut jeans — that’s my base. Then I add either jewelry, a pretty coat, or a killer pair of shoes, and that does it for me. I’m still on the lookout for my killer pair of shoes for this winter, by the way…

Normcore.

Hey, I didn’t say I was Normcore. I like beautiful things and I think too many basics kill the basic.
And vintage 501′s scare me. They’re really not for everyone.

Food.

I make single-ingredient meals. Like yesterday, I wanted to make ratatouille, and then I ended up just cooking zucchini. The ingredients? Zucchini. Nope, I didn’t even add onions — it gives them a weird taste. It’s super tasty, takes only 5 minutes to prepare (it’s all in the provençal style cooking — a little olive oil, salt and pepper, and then you have to burn them just a little) and frankly, for someone who lives in New York and spends their life in restaurants, it gives your palate a nice break.
And it’s healthy!

So I make myself little dishes with three ingredients max. I love it.
Squash soup. Avocado toast. Steamed leeks. Dark chocolate. Sardines. Cheese for dinner. A glass of red wine. Ah the good life!!!

Traveling.

Not too far. Not too complicated. For New Year’s, I’ll be on a beach in Costa Rica. The goal? To try To surf, eat ceviche, and drink margaritas with friends. That’s it.
Hey, speaking of food and Costa Rica, hahaha. Bathing suit anxiety right after Christmas.

Exercise (aka: bathing suit anxiety right after Christmas)

After pretty much quitting yoga since it was kind of messing up my back (it’s a little depressing, given my incredible talent for it, I don’t know why, but yoga just hurts my back) I decided to start exercising again, but without setting stupid goals that I’ll give up on after half an hour.

So now I work on my abs and butt at home, and I walk at least an hour per day (to get to the Studio, for example)(I have a pretty good app for that — it’s called Moves*) or I’ll run for half an hour if I know I won’t have time to walk. That plus push-ups to get me ready for surfing (I’m at 12 now — in your opinion, how many do I need to do? 100? 88 more to go!!! Yay!!!) And when I have time, I’ll do yoga or pilates or a dance class with a friend. Just for fun.

Voilà. Simple, right?

What about you? Are you super trendy like me or are you still accumulating a bunch of stuff? (That’s so 2011 — seriously, pull yourself together!)

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*Moves, is like an improved pedometer that counts your steps.
The only problem with Moves is when there’s a glitch. Yesterday I walked like a crazy person to beat my record and suddenly the app froze, and I lost everything I’d done and felt like I’d walked for nothing, which is ridiculous and just goes to show how addicted we can get to these things!!!

Translated by Andrea Perdue

Miami Diary Day 3 // Sleek Swimwear

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When packing for Miami, I had just one thing in mind; to find the perfect swimsuits! Vacations are the epitome of escape, the essence of relaxation and we all deserve nothing more than to be sipping on a refreshing caipirinha while wearing the sleekest swimwear. Miami calls for big hats, bold colors, and dramatic sunglasses. It’s colorful glamour of the 1950’s was at the root of styles I was on the hunt for.

My search began on Shopbop where I discovered KORE. I was immediately taken with their playful color block cut out details that the bikinis and one pieces boasted. The vibrant colors and rich textures of the collection immediately transported me to the white sand beaches of Miami with tropicalismo melodies floating overhead.

My complaint about other bikinis today is that they are so over done! To many details, prints and strings. KORE’s collection holds a true minimalist design at it’s core (no pun intended) which I admire about their innovative designs. Their new 2015 collection fuses fashion with sport creating a hybrid of sleek, modern sophistication.

If you can see yourself sporting KORE for your upcoming resort trips, I have some exciting news for you!  We are GIVING AWAY one suit to one lucky winner! Check out their website for all of there styles HERE.  To enter to win, simply follow along below. We will be announcing the winner in this post next Friday, December 12th. Good luck!

1. Sign up for KORE newsletter HERE

2. Follow KORE on instagram HERE

*Selection will be made at random from the newsletter signups.  
 
UPDATE: The winder of the giveaway is Jade Sheldon-Burnsed!

Photos by Fred Cipoletti 

Miami Diary Day 2 \ The Iconic’s

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When it comes to styles, I gravitate towards the iconic’s. Whether it be a boater hat or classic wide leg pant, there’s sweet sentiments in dressing like your walking out of a Bridget Bardot film from the 60’s.  Have you seen Breathless? Oh, it’s a must if you haven’t. Each and every detail in the film is perfection. Just like the details of the film take you in, the details in an outfit are equally important.

I’ve always been in love with delicate jewelry, and lots of it! Stacking and layering diamond encrusted pieces is an understated way to make a chic statement. I am always looking for delicate watches to complement this so when I came across the Deco Diamond watch from Michele, it was basically love at first sight. Not only does it blend perfectly with my other diamond duds but the classic shape of the face and chain link band is as timeless and as iconic as they come. And in the era of smart phones as your time piece, I believe in elegant wrist wear!

Time pieces make amazing gifts for the holidays too and Michele Watches are the perfect gift for your picky bestie or watch obsessed sister.

Photos by Fred Cipoletti

My best 15 Airport looks

tbs_airport1 I was wearing:

CONVERSE ALL STAR
ZARA LEATHER SHORTS (similar here)
LOUIS VUITTON LUGGAGES
LOUIS VUITTON W BAG

tbs_airport2I was wearing:

CHANEL BOY BAG
LAER LEATHER JACKET (similar here)
LOUIS VUITTON KEEPALL BAG

tbs_airport3 I was wearing:

BALENCIAGA CEINTURE ANKLE BOOTS
VINTAGE TSHIRT
LOUIS VUITTON LUGGAGES

tbs_airport4 I was wearing:

BALENCIAGA CEINTURE LACE ANKLE BOOTS
JBRAND RIPPED JEANS
CELINE LEATHER JACKET
HERMES KELLY BAG
LOUIS VUITTON LUGGAGES

tbs_airport5 I was wearing:

REFORMATION SWEATER
LEVIS’S JEANS
BALENCIAGA CEINTURE LACE ANKLE BOOTS
CHANEL BACKPACK
LOUIS VUITTON ZEPHYR LUGGAGE

tbs_airport6I was wearing:

BALENCIAGA CEINTURE LACE ANKLE BOOTS
CHANEL BACKPACK
DIOR “SO REAL” SUNGLASSES
LOUIS VUITTON ZEPHYR LUGGAGE

tbs_airport7 I was wearing:

CHIARA FERRAGNI COLLECTION CAMERON SNEAKERS
JBRAND JEANS
IRO PARIS LEATHER JACKET
LOUIS VUITTON BACKPACK BY MARC NEWSON
LOUIS VUITTON LUGGAGES

tbs_airport8 I was wearing:

CHIARA FERRAGNI COLLECTION JAMES BOOTS
JBRAND JEANS
CHANEL BOY BAG
MR&MRS FUR BOMBER JACKET
LOUIS VUITTON LUGGAGES

tbs_airport9 I was wearing:

CHIARA FERRAGNI COLLECTION JAMES BOOTS
TOPSHOP PUG JUMPSUIT

tbs_airport11I was wearing:

THE BLONDE SALAD X STEVE MADDEN SLIPONS
CALVIN KLEIN COAT
HERMES BIRKIN BAG
DIOR “SO REAL” SUNGLASSES

tbs_airport12 I was wearing:

THE BLONDE SALAD X STEVE MADDEN SLIPONS
JBRAND JEANS
CHANEL VINTAGE JACKET
CHANEL BOY BAG
BALENCIAGA LUGGAGE

tbs_airport13I was wearing:

LEVI’S JEANS AND JACKET
MANEBI’ ESPADRILLAS
MIUMIU SUNGLASSES
LOUIS VUITTON LUGGAGES

tbs_aerport14I was wearing:

GIVENCHY LAURA BOOTS
CAROLINA WYSER JEANS
CHANEL BOY BAG
PEUTEREY PARKA
LOUIS VUITTON ZEPHYR LUGGAGE

tbs_aerport15I was wearing:

SENSO BLAKE BOOTS
STYLESTALKER HAT

Mad for Marrakech

I apologise if a) this is all old news to those that have been to Marrakech and b) if it all reads like a hackneyed travelogue stereotype.  I can only write it how I see it and the truth is… I’ve come back genuinely extolling the sort of cliches that a city like Marrakech inspires.  To me, the city was “magical”, “mystical” and “mysterious”…  any other words beginning with M that fit the bill?  Those words are fully warranted.    A rudimentary Google search on Marrakech though is enough to convince any vague aesthete of its virtues – the saturated colours, the pride in craft and and its inherent ties with design evident in almost every nook and cranny of their buildings and interiors.  Why it’s taken so long for me to visit a city that is drenched in colour and print is probably down to my own laziness.  I therefore have to thank my sister Louisa, who happens to be the art director of Black Tomato, the boutique travel agency which arranged this trip.  A three day trip to Marrakech blind would not have been half as enjoyable as the well researched one that we enjoyed.

I hope you’ll allow me to go a bit “lifestyle” and a bit “travel” on you.  It’s my opportunity to indulge in a bit of Trip Advisor-esque critique minus the tedious comments on cleanliness.  But in case you’re wondering if this is a little bit tenuous, a quick scroll through the pics might convince you of Marrakech’s mystique (oh look, another one…) and connection to style.

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We arrived into town and were immediately picked up by the wonderful staff of Riad Farnatchi, on the edge of the souks and in the heart of the Medina.  Or should I say hosts.  It was my first riad experience and I’m now loathe to go back to conventional hotels as you are welcomed in as though it was somebody’s private home (which they were, designed to create privacy and protection).  Any one of the nine suites at Riad Farnatchi is a treat with private balconies or roof terraces attached to the lavishly decorated rooms.  I have no other Riad experience to compare with but the Farnatchi is pretty hard to beat in my mind – every little detail from the nightly canapés, the fruit arrangement at breakfast and the thorough hammam experience was well thought out.  I especially liked the personal tidbits in the information guides, written by the owner James himself.  Nothing felt standardised or systematic.  Had it been hotter (rain and 15 to 22 degree temperatures didn’t dent my experience), i probably would have wiled away hours on the rooftop or in the lush courtyard pool.

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IMG_0668Joe enjoying brekkie on his private balcony

IMG_0694Morning Marrakech!

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We got a bit carried away with our complimentary fez hats and djellaba robes.  Breakfasts and baths are way more fun when you’ve got a Fez hat on.

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We then went over to The Fellah, twenty minutes south of Marrakech to have lunch and to get a tour around what would definitely be my alternative choice of accommodation if I wanted to be away from the bustle of the Medina (a combo of an in-town Riad and something like The Fellah would make sense to me if I came back for a longer trip).  It’s a cool, slightly “hipsterfied” retreat-driven counterpart to the authentic and traditional Riad, with plenty of Insta-friendly interior details.  It’s not all about surface though as the community, eco and cultural exchange aspects are quite impressive You can brew tea, train in a boxing ring or milk a goat with a local Berber villager.  You can also learn about Arab literature or see an artist in residence at its cultural centre Dar Al-Ma’mûn.  Or else, just enjoy the poolside view overlooking the Atlas mountains.  

IMG_0634Louisa, Joe and I buddying up at the Fellah

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IMG_0036   141121_Joseph_Piper_Marrakech_Portraits_IMG_9811Photograph by Joseph Piper

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IMG_0616Wearing Kemissara ruffled top, vintage slip dress, Monki leggings, Salvatore Ferragamo shoes, Jerome Dreyfuss bag

Thanks to my super duper organised sister, the next day, we headed out for a day trip to the foot of the Atlas Mountains in the Imlil Valley passing through several Berber villages backgrounded by the surreal sight of snow-covered Toubkal (the highest mountain in the Atlas mountains), next to autumnal leaves and lush greenery.  Another “Awesome, Immense, Dose of Nature!” ticked off the bucket list.

En route we stopped off at a female cooperative producing argan oil and like the good tourists that we were, bought a needless amount of the stuff (both for eating and cosmetic use) as souvenirs.

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141122_Style_Bubble_Joseph_Piper_Marrakech_IMG_0721Photograph by Joseph Piper – Me and my super sis Louisa

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Guided by Noureddine, we got an insight into Berber village culture and also got a lot of inquisitive.  In manner of Sue Perkins in the Mekong, it does feel a bit odd to be trekking through a village with inquisitive kids and cats scampering about everywhere, as though it could be intrusive.  Noureddine assured us though that the reliance on tourism in Morocco means we are welcome by the villagers so long as we don’t point our cameras at them.

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Instead we pointed them at the imposing and mighty Toubkal… and my *ahem* interesting choice of hiking gear.  Yes you can trek with three different prints on…

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IMG_0879   141122_Joseph_Piper_Marrakech_Portraits_IMG_0876Photograph by Joseph Piper 

IMG_0915Wearing scarf from Bali, Fancy Shit paisley jacket, Nike hoodie, Romance was Born t-shirt and trousers, Nike Flyknits, Ally Capellino rucksack, Miu Miu sunglasses

Around the corner from our Riad, is Medersa Ben Youssef, the former Islamic college built in the 14th century, which is just as impressive up close as it is from afar.  We managed to catch the famous courtyard, surrounded by marble and stucco carvings and rich geometric tiles, with nobody in it but the cleaner.  I love that you get these moments of real tranquility shielded by high walls and adorned by courtyard pools, that contrast with the madness of the souks beyond.

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Another place of far-removed tranquility is of course the Jardin Majorelle, which I talked up yesterday.  It’s hard to convey in pictures, the incredibly intense saturation levels of the “Majorelle” blue of the Villa Oasis, contrasted with bright yellow accents.  As we approached the building, I believe we did do a collective squeal.

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141123_Joseph_Piper_Marrakech_Portraits_IMG_1210Wearing vintage Celine cardigan, Low Classic dress, Nike Gyakusou leggings, Christopher Kane sandals, Jerome Dreyfuss bag

Another note about the Boutique Majorelle, where I purchased the Yves Saint Laurent “Love” inspired leather slippers: it’s really not just another gift shop.  The selection of caftans, blankets, slippers, jewellery and other ornamental gifts are sympathetic to the Jardin’s connection with Saint Laurent, as exemplified by the orange and pink satin kaftan and turban combo below as well as to traditional Moroccan craftsmanship.

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Just across the road 33 rue Majorelle, Marrakech’s first and (only?) concept store, there’s more evidence of a new generation of designers wanting to place Moroccan craft into a contemporary context.  I loved the pieces like a Berber wrap skirt by Bakchic, designed by Moroccan fashion blogger Sofia El Arabi and the dyed leather bags by Fez-based label Mouhib.

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Back in the Medina, Norya Ayron is updating traditional kaftans and aybayas in a range of modern fabrics at her Pop-Up Shop at the restaurant Le Jardin.

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I’ve left the best and the most “relevant” until last.  Souks galore of course!  I was actually setting myself up for a disappointing browsing experience as having been to the Grand Bazaar in Istanbul, I was pretty much disillusioned by all the tourist tat and vaguely sexist/racist yelling.  The souk sellers in the Medina do try and lure you in but it’s less hardcore than their Turkish counterparts, unless you stop and make eye contact and enter into a bartering position.  And the actual products on sale – away from the main drags running off the main square Jemaa el-Fnaa – is definitely worthy of your attention (and your dirhams!).  Without even buying anything it’s worth spending many an hour walking around, connecting up colour and pattern seen in every shop and its merchandise.

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IMG_0106Breakfast fruit plate at Riad Farnatchi

IMG_0051Tiles at Cafe de France – the spot to grab a terrace view of Jemaa el-Fnaa

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IMG_1374Woodworker making traditional handles 

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IMG_1369Bric a brac shop in the souk

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ddd

IMG_1365Marble solitaire anyone?

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IMG_1357Silk thread shop – the seller tried to convince me that I needed all of these colourful spools of thread in my life.  I almost believed him.

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We had walked two minutes into souk on Sunday and we were immediately told by an overly enthusiastic guy that they were dyeing the silk and wool and after ducking in and out of several alley ways, we found ourselves in the dyers’ souk where natural pigments and spools of yarn are processed in a large vat.  The owners of the accompanying scarf stall were trying to lure us into buying something, wrapping Steve up in Yves Klein blue but in the end, once we said it was a firm no, they did let us go without any aggression.

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Staying in the Riad Farnatchi, we were lucky enough to be a stone’s throw away from many a craftsman.  It’s a world that exists not just for tourists but as a nod to local traditions – there’s a weaver, a tannery, a lamp welder (no candlestick maker…).  It’s not craft for craft’s sake but a concrete way of making a living here.  And I’ve never been in a city where practically every street has a seamstress/tailor working for local trade.

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IMG_1291Weaver and scarves at Bennouna Faissal

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IMG_0019Courtyard of a tannery – the stench of the bird poop to make the skins supple is truly heinous…

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I was expecting the hard sell to be harder and so in the end, was pleasantly surprised.  Save for the food sellers on Jemaa el-Fnaa, who seem to think us Brits would be sold in with a spot of Cockney slang and bad impressions of Jamie Oliver, the people in the souks were quite helpful and eager to talk about their wares once you got past the initial cat calls of “Konichiwa”.  If I had more time, I might have gotten carried away with the shopping but on our first souk experience, we came away with a few wooden cooking utensils, some spices that we needed in the pantry anyway, a vintage tile and my primary target of purchase – two boucherouite rugs. 

Yes, they flood every savvy interiors blog and yes, they’ve been “on-trend” for a while.  I always felt they’ve been sold at inflated prices on eBay, Easy and interior shops so I thought it was better to go to the source (well at least the same country) to buy them.  Once you’ve seen these rugs, made out of fabric scraps, in the humble homes of Berber villages and on the backs of donkeys and mules used as saddle covers, it’s hard to see them as a bijoux interior item priced at a trend-led premium.  That said, it was a joy to see so many to choose from in every carpet shop.  No two are the same which just meant I ended up in a rug quandary everywhere I went, frustrating both the sellers and my travel gang.  In the end I chose two small ones that would fit my tiddly bedrooms and paid a price that didn’t insult the seller and in my mind, was well worth the trip to Marrakech.

141123_Style_Bubble_Joseph_Piper_Marrakech_IMG_1435This particular rug was pretty expensive but the dense weaving of a huge variety of rags warrants it… except I’d probably prfer to wear it as a skirt rather than have it on my floor…

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141123_Style_Bubble_Joseph_Piper_Marrakech_IMG_1464Photographs of carpet sellers by Joseph Piper

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IMG_0024Marrakech – a cat lover’s paradise.  Kitty kitty kitties everywhere…

I know I say this after every travel post that I’ll be back.  I’m keeping my promise with Marrakech and other parts of Morocco will be on the agenda soon enough…

Experience Morocco with Black Tomato

From Marrakech with Love

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>> The title of the post is how the imaginary postcard would have gone if I had gotten my wish to stay on… and on… and on… It will surprise nobody that I’ve returned from my too short first-time trip to Marrakech in Morocco longing to go back.  The natural oohs and aaahs that the intensely vibrant yesteryear city incites are fully warranted.  I’ve just had to wait a while to experience it.  Despite my tardiness to the joys of Marrakech, I’ll still be rounding up my three day stay, with much thanks to Black Tomato Travel, with a hefty post once I’ve sorted through the bajillion of pics we took.

05_STOLEN_MOMENTS_Yves_Saint_Laurent-4Yves Saint Laurent in Marrakech in 1969

For now, I’m keeping it short and sweet.  Let’s kick it off with “Love”, the theme of Yves Saint Laurent’s greeting cards, which he would create out of collage every year to send to close friends and clients to ring in a new year.  Their designs are on displayed at the Galerie Love Saint Laurent within the beautiful Jardin Majorelle, which Saint Laurent and Pierre Bergé rescued in 1980 and used as his Marrakech bolthole.  It felt like a pilgrimage of sorts, visiting the beautifully landscaped gardens on Rue Yves Saint Laurent, a tranquil world away from the dusty bustle of the Medina, where Saint Laurent’s ashes were scattered when he died in 2008.  Except instead of feeling sombre like you would at a grave, it was celebratory of Saint Laurent’s love of this garden, carefully restored, cultivated and maintained by Berge and Saint Laurent, and of his overall love of this mysterious city, where he felt the creative freedom to dive into an extremely colourful oeuvre in the 1970s, furiously sketched out in felt tips, and fuelled by his tight knit circle of muses wafting around.

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The exuberant and often witty graphics that Saint Laurent designed as greetings cards, exploding with colour and fun, moments of frivolity captured in his turbulent emotional life.  The beautiful merchandise in the Boutique Majorelle (no normal souvenir shop) – took inspiration from the cards and so it is I came home with a pair of embroidered leather slippers, spelling out LOVE, the only emotion I was ever going to feel for this city.

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Seoul visual diary: Dongdaemun and things, part 3

Seoul

Seoul

Seoul

Seoul

Style-Slicker-x-Ralph Lauren's The Mini Ricky

Seoul

Seoul

Seoul

Seoul

Seoul

With little time in Seoul, I wasn’t ready to go back to Hong Kong and face the dreadful heat and get bitten by blood sucking mozzies all over again.  My brother Ken and I were invited to spend a couple of nights at JW Marriott in Dongdaemun Square Plaza, a stone throw away from Dongdaemun Design Plaza, Seoul’s popular shopping destination and traditional markets that covers the entire area.  Did you know the building of JW Marriott was what used to be a car park complex once belonged to a previous Hotel?  We indulged an afternoon Britishness in the rooftop alfresco before we took a walk around the neighbourhood and beyond.

What to see and do in Dongdaemun and beyond.

  • Dongdaemun Design Plaza – a shiny fluid form, neo-futuristic building what looked like a starship enterprise in Star Trek.  Designed by Iraqi British architect Zaha Hadid, DPP is a popular tourist destination, the plaza features exhibition spaces and shops as well as a fashion hub in Seoul Fashion Week.
  • An afternoon/evening stroll along Cheonggyecheon Stream – usually flooded with lovers for a quiet intimate moment, and joggers a like.  Do take a stroll during sunset and enjoy the breathtaking views of reflective skyscrapers.
  • Cycling along Han River – you can rent a bike at Yeouido Park from 3,000KW per hour.  Yeuouido is considered the mecca for cyclists, inline skaters and marathon runners in Seoul, it’s congested in most weekends for family and campers alike.

 


The post Seoul visual diary: Dongdaemun and things, part 3 appeared first on STYLE SLICKER.

Seoul visual diary: Dongdaemun and things, part 3

Seoul

Seoul

Seoul

Seoul

Style-Slicker-x-Ralph Lauren's The Mini Ricky

Seoul

Seoul

Seoul

Seoul

Seoul

With little time in Seoul, I wasn’t ready to go back to Hong Kong and face the dreadful heat and get bitten by blood sucking mozzies all over again.  My brother Ken and I were invited to spend a couple of nights at JW Marriott in Dongdaemun Square Plaza, a stone throw away from Dongdaemun Design Plaza, Seoul’s popular shopping destination and traditional markets that covers the entire area.  Did you know the building of JW Marriott was what used to be a car park complex once belonged to a previous Hotel?  We indulged an afternoon Britishness in the rooftop alfresco before we took a walk around the neighbourhood and beyond.

What to see and do in Dongdaemun and beyond.

  • Dongdaemun Design Plaza – a shiny fluid form, neo-futuristic building what looked like a starship enterprise in Star Trek.  Designed by Iraqi British architect Zaha Hadid, DPP is a popular tourist destination, the plaza features exhibition spaces and shops as well as a fashion hub in Seoul Fashion Week.
  • An afternoon/evening stroll along Cheonggyecheon Stream – usually flooded with lovers for a quiet intimate moment, and joggers a like.  Do take a stroll during sunset and enjoy the breathtaking views of reflective skyscrapers.
  • Cycling along Han River – you can rent a bike at Yeouido Park from 3,000KW per hour.  Yeuouido is considered the mecca for cyclists, inline skaters and marathon runners in Seoul, it’s congested in most weekends for family and campers alike.

 


The post Seoul visual diary: Dongdaemun and things, part 3 appeared first on STYLE SLICKER.

New York sky

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I was wearing:

SAINT LAURENT BOOTIES
ANIYE BY BOYFRIEND JEANS
UNIQLO TURTLENECK
ZARA CAPE AND SCARF
CARTIER BRACELETS
CELINE BOX BAG

Photos by Cole Barash

Hong Kong diary

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Three days spent in Hong Kong, city I’d never been before, for my shoeline, Chiara Ferragni, which landed to I.T. concept store with a dedicated event.
In the photos our walks at Causeway Bay, the Sky Terrace on the top of Victoria Peak, Mong Kok and the highest bar in the world, Ozone :)

Tre giorni passati ad Hong Kong, città nella quale non ero mai stata prima, in occasione della mia linea di scarpe, Chiara Ferragni, che è arrivata in anteprima da I.T. con un evento dedicato.
Le foto delle nostre visite a Causeway Bay, la Sky Terrace a Victoria Peak, Mong Kok, ed il bar più alto al mondo, l’Ozone :)

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HONG KONG, November 3rd-6th 2014

CHIARA FERRAGNI SHOES available ONLINE HERE and IN THESE STORES

Photos by Andrew Arthur

Mcq Coat weather

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New York and my first winter taste: perfect occasion to wear the new McQ Alexander McQueen coat.

New York ed il mio primo vero assaggio di inverno: ottimo pretesto per indossare il nuovo cappotto di McQ Alexander McQueen.

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I was wearing:

DIOR SNEAKERS
GAS DENIM OVERALL
STEFANEL STRIPED SWEATER
MCQ ALEXANDER MCQUEEN COAT
LOUIS VUITTON MAXI EARRING
HERMES KELLY BAG
FENDI BAG BUG
CELINE SUNGLASSES

Photos by Andrew Arthur

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

The Del Val #40

Chances are if you’re reading this you consider yourself a creative type.  And maybe while traveling you’d like to stay in another creative type’s home?  Look no further for what will assist you.

Spotify explains itself. To add our two cents: People tend to forget that in the creative fields a few people make most of the money, a portion manage to make a living, and everyone else does what they do largely as labors of love. It’s been that way for decades and we doubt it will ever be all that different in the future. Regardless, just do your small part and pay if you like consuming something!

Last week we posted about dancers in a ballet institution. This week we feature some on the streets showing people their skills for free.

We frankly don’t know how London can find enough qualified people who possess such extraordinary memory retention to drive its cabs. Peek into what is considered the hardest test in the world.

It’s almost Thanksgiving here in the states, which means many people will be spending time in the kitchen. If you’re not in yours all that often these short, instructional videos will help you do things the best and most efficient way. Plus you were just on the NY Times’ site already anyway.

You were just assisted in the kitchen, now let’s look at your walls and how you are hanging artwork on them.

While the internet breaks itself over shiny Kim we’ll take an un-retouched Lara any day.

 

A weekly round up of the best links from Delphine & Wes Del Val.


By delphine and wes

The Del Val #40

Chances are if you’re reading this you consider yourself a creative type.  And maybe while traveling you’d like to stay in another creative type’s home?  Look no further for what will assist you.

Spotify explains itself. To add our two cents: People tend to forget that in the creative fields a few people make most of the money, a portion manage to make a living, and everyone else does what they do largely as labors of love. It’s been that way for decades and we doubt it will ever be all that different in the future. Regardless, just do your small part and pay if you like consuming something!

Last week we posted about dancers in a ballet institution. This week we feature some on the streets showing people their skills for free.

We frankly don’t know how London can find enough qualified people who possess such extraordinary memory retention to drive its cabs. Peek into what is considered the hardest test in the world.

It’s almost Thanksgiving here in the states, which means many people will be spending time in the kitchen. If you’re not in yours all that often these short, instructional videos will help you do things the best and most efficient way. Plus you were just on the NY Times’ site already anyway.

You were just assisted in the kitchen, now let’s look at your walls and how you are hanging artwork on them.

While the internet breaks itself over shiny Kim we’ll take an un-retouched Lara any day.

 

A weekly round up of the best links from Delphine & Wes Del Val.


By delphine and wes

Dreams of San Fran

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Margo and Me_SanFrancisco_1707Margo and Me_SanFrancisco_1722 Margo and Me_SanFrancisco_1855 Margo and Me_SanFrancisco_1662 Margo and Me_SanFrancisco_1789 Margo and Me_SanFrancisco_1806 Margo and Me_SanFrancisco_1849 Margo and Me_SanFrancisco_1781 Margo and Me_SanFrancisco_1717With the holidays on the horizon, we have a lot to be thinking about..already! I don’t know about you but I just booked travel plans and am excited for a little east coast snow, but not too much! Last time I wished for that we were snowed in for two weeks! Whoopsies!

There are things in my life that I am rather last minute about but Holiday shopping however, is not one of them. It’s almost like a sport for me, plotting the play by figuring out the perfect gift for my loved ones and then executing my plan of attack based on sales and special discount codes! I like to refer to it as smart shopping and with all that is available to us at our fingertips, there’s no reason to not be smart shopping not only through the holidays, but all throughout the year!

Trust me, I get it. The holidays put a lot of pressure on our already stressful lives and let’s be honest, our stressed wallets! My goal this holiday season is to to bring you a little inside scoop on the tricks and the trades of shopping during the holidays to relieve a little of that stress.

First off! I have been curating a very special gift guide over the past month. If you head to the shopping portion of my site, you can find not only categories from Under $100, Gift Guide and Accessories, but I also list to a bunch of my favorite retailers who are my go-to’s for the holidays. Not to mention, Nordstrom offers free sipping AND returns….just sayin’!

You guys, black Friday is just around the corner! Which by the way, did you know it’s the fifth most popular shopping day of the season? The first, Cyber Monday on December 1st! Mark your calendars and keep an eye out for my list of go to destinations for the best discounts online and in store. And I’ve been working hard to bring you discounts on those luxury goods you’ve been eyeing all year! Because hey, Santa might forget that YSL bag you’ve been ogling!

Also, if you’re following along on my Instagram page @MargoAndMe you might be seeing a lot of this  LIKEtoKNOW.IT stuff! Curious about what it is? It’s another shopping tool! Because Instagram does not allow users to provide direct links, Reward Style has come up with what I think is the more viable (and genius) solution which I love using not only to show you where to shop what I am wearing but a lot of my favorite designers and retails use it also – this makes it easy for me to shop their looks directly from my inbox! Essentially, once you sign up for LIKEtoKNOW.IT (HERE) all you have to then do is like a photo like you normally do on Instagram when you see a code that looks like; www.liketk.it/dsj7. Then an email is sent directly to your inbox with cute little photos and links to each of the products that I am wearing, making it easier than ever to get my looks. But you can also just scroll down and shop them from here :)

Photos by Fred Cipoletti

When in Kauai

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I was wearing:

INTIMISSIMI SEXY NUDE SLIP
INTIMISSIMI SEXY NUDE PUSH UP
INTIMISSIMI LACE BABYDOLL

Photos by Andrew Arthur

Beijing Instants

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Last month I was in Beijing doing a bunch of work and here are just a few instants of my stay there. For those of you who’ve followed me from the beginning, I used to live here (for almost three years!) which is why it’ll always feel like home to me. This time I was luckily to be hosted by the incredible Opposite House, which is hands down my favorite place to stay in the capital. Super modern architecture and close proximity to the best restaurants and shopping. Make sure to check it out if you’re ever in the ‘Bei’! Hope you’re having a great weekend!

xo V

40 things about Hong Kong

unnamed-201 1. Tian Tan Buddha 

022. Ten Thousand Buddhas Monastery 220 Paitau village, Shatin, HK

HK 33. Man Mo Temple one of HK oldest temples dedicated to the gods of literature and war, Hollywood Road, Sheung wan

04 4. Old Wan Chai Post Office on Queen’s Road.

05 5. IDT Sheung Wan, cultural hub of HK

06 6. Lanterns festival in Hong Kong 

077. Johnson Road in the 50’s 

HK 8 8. Kowloon walled city Park, Kowloon city district. The park covers 31.000 square metros and is divided into 8 scenic zones.

09 9. Grassroots Pantry, 12 Fuk Sau Lane, Sai Ying Pun, Hong-Kong  

01010.  Lung Jie Thai Restaurant  , G/F, 2A-B Nga Tsin Long Road, Kowloon City

Hk 11 11. Light  Radiant Food , Eastern Street, Western District , Hong Kong

012 12. Nan Lian Garden: Tang dynasty-style garden in Diamond Hill, HK

013 13. Mana ! fast slow food 

014 14. Sense 99 Bar, 99 Wellington street

015 15. Blue house, No. 72 Stone Nullah Lane 

016 16. Street Art and Graffiti in Hong Kong

017 17. Kowloon walled city, 350 interconnected high-rise buildings where 33.000 resident live. Originally was a chinese military fort.

01818. Early morning at Wan Chai street market. 

018.519. Hong Kong View in the 70’s  

HK 19 20. Lee kung man knitting factory, 111 Wing Lok Street, Sheung Wan

020 21. Seeva taste bar: luxurious restaurant and terrace bar at top prime central tower.

02122. Symphony of lights. Every night view of Victoria Harbour at 20.00 pm

HK 22 23. Apliu Street, Street market

023 24. Disneyland Hong Kong, Lantau Island

group25. I.T Hysan One store, here you can find Chiara Ferragni Collection shoes, 1 Hysan Avenue, Causeway Bay, Hong Kong

02526. Art Basel. Up coming Art Basel shows are planned in advance so you may mark your calendars 15-17 march 2015.

026 27. Ilivetomorrow gallery , 45 Tung St, Hong-Kong  

027 28. Fungus workshop, 4 Po Hing Fong, Hong-Kong 

028 29. Moustache, 31 Aberdeen St, Hong-Kong

029 30. Monocle shop, Shop 1, U/G, Bo Fung Mansion, 1-4 St. 

030 31. Cat Street Market , Sheung Wan, Hong Kong, China (Formerly Upper Lascar Row)  

031 32. Ocean Park Hong kong Giant Panda Adventure , Aberdeen Hong Kong

032 33. Teakha, a lifestyle concept tea café & zakka store 18 Tai Ping Shan St, Hong-Kong 

033 34. Bauhinia blakeana, the flower in the national Hong Kong flag 

034 35. Flower Market. Most famous one is held in Victoria Park in Causeway bay. Annually starting a couple of weeks before new year and running until new years day.

035 36. Tung Choi Street North – better known as the Goldfish Market is where Hong Kong people go to buy luck-bringing goldfish and other tropical aquarium pets.

036 37. Victoria Peak, highest point on HK island, standing at 552 m.

037 38. Ammo Cafè, restaurant and bar 9 Justice Drive, Admiralty, HK

038 39. Sky 100, highest building in HK.
The observation deck is located on the 100th floor of the iconic ICC building offering a 360º views of HK.

03940. Wan Chai District Nightlife

 

Coming to Chicago!

Next week Garance and I are headed to Chicago for the first time ever!!


Yes, that’s right, we’ve both never been.

Garance is being honored at the Museum and Science and Industry with their first ever Fashion Inspiration Award (bravo G!) and we’ll be doing a Fashion for Breakfast event at SoHo House, but we’d love to know: what should we do and see? Who should we meet?

And more importantly, where can I get the best Chicago Deep Dish Pizza?


By emilyn

Coming to Chicago!

Next week Garance and I are headed to Chicago for the first time ever!!


Yes, that’s right, we’ve both never been.

Garance is being honored at the Museum and Science and Industry with their first ever Fashion Inspiration Award (bravo G!) and we’ll be doing a Fashion for Breakfast event at SoHo House, but we’d love to know: what should we do and see? Who should we meet?

And more importantly, where can I get the best Chicago Deep Dish Pizza?


By emilyn

Seoul visual diary: Bukchon and Samcheongdong, part 2

Seoul

Seoul

Seoul

Seoul

Seoul

Seoul

Seoul

Seoul

Seoul

Seoul

Seoul

Seoul

Seoul

Seoul

Seoul

Seoul

I’ve always wondered what it was like to stay in one of the traditional Korean hanoks in Seoul, you know, sleeping on the wooden floor with a padded mattress, a pillow and duvet in a windowless box-size room, sit on the floor with legs folded and have breakfast or dinner with Korean folks.  My ideal lifestyle for a bumster like me.

Arriving late in the evening from Hong Kong to Seoul, my brother Ken and I booked an overnight stay at Moon Guest House in Anguk before we moved to another accommodation at JW Marriott in Dongdaemun, we shared a small room without a fuss, it was a perfect opportunity for sister to brother pillow-talk catch up.  Thankfully, we both had a good night sleep, however, due to time constraints, and we were unable to explore the guest house and experience the traditional way of living, we checked out in the morning and left our luggages behind, had breakfast at a nearby cafe, and then enroute to Bukchon Hanok Village (북촌한옥마을), a few minutes walk from the guest house and Anguk Subway Station, we arrived there early to avoid influx of tourists from China.  Many snaps later and being told to hurry up and move on by a group of impatient ajummas (middle-aged woman), we left Bukchon and strolled through Samcheongdong (삼청동), a quaint neighbourhood characterised by small cafes, restaurants, boutiques, art galleries, and hanok-style residential buildings tucked away in quiet alleyways leading up to tree-lined main street of Samcheong-ro.  It was another surreal moment for me.  You know what?  I would absolutely love to live there!


Stay tuned for part 3!

Have you missed part 1, click on the link to read Seoul visual diary: Cheonggyeong Palace and Daeonsil.


The post Seoul visual diary: Bukchon and Samcheongdong, part 2 appeared first on STYLE SLICKER.

Hawaii diary

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Photographic diary of my five days in one of the most beautiful island I’ve ever visited: Kauai.

Diario fotografico dei cinque giorni passati in una delle isole più belle che io abbia mai visitato: Kauai.

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KAUAI, 24th-28th October 2014

Seoul visual diary: Changgyeonggung and Daeonsil, part 1

Changgyeonggung - Seoul

Changgyeonggung - Seoul

Changgyeonggung - Seoul

Changgyeonggung - Seoul

Changgyeonggung - Seoul

Changgyeonggung - Seoul

Changgyeonggung - Seoul

Changgyeonggung - Seoul

Changgyeonggung - Seoul

Changgyeonggung - Seoul

Changgyeonggung - Seoul

Changgyeonggung - Seoul

Changgyeonggung - Seoul

A long-overdue blog post and (drum roll, please)… I’m very excited to share my visual diary from Seoul, I can’t believe it has taken 5 months to slap the photos on the blog, my, I really do take my time there.  It was my second visit to Seoul in the last 5 years, previously my Korean cultural experience was so-so.  This time I asked my younger brother Ken of popular blog Seoul State of Mind (he lives in Gwangju province) to spend 2.5 days with me in Seoul, I haven’t seen Ken since our sister’s wedding 2 years ago so it was a good time for some catch-up, plus he acted as my private tour guide!  He knows every nook and cranny in Seoul, and he can speak Korean, daebak!

We visited Changgyeong Palace (창경궁) in Waryong Park, Jongno district, a 10 minute walk from Hyehwa subway station, on the Seoul Subway Line 4. Let me tell you something, the palace grounds were massive, it was like a forbidden city with numerous residential quarters to house the king, queen, concubines, queen mother, attendants eunuchs, maids, and officials.  Along with ornate pavilions, gates, shrines, Daeonsil (the Great Greenhouse), and countless numbers of halls for different purposes.  To step foot in the old 15th Century palace from Joseon Dynasty was quite surreal, I was in awe of everything, having been a big fan of Korean period dramas since I first watched Dae Jang Geum in 2004, I was mesmerised by its ancient culture – the food, costumes, etiquette, beauty, and the beautiful language. I was hooked!

We couldn’t leave the palace without visiting the Great Greenhouse ‘Daeonsil’, a stunning enclosed botanical garden built in 1909, a perfect place to escape from the burning heat and torrential downpour, or even for a romantic cuddle.


Address: Changgyeonggung, 185 Changgyeonggung-ro, Jongno-gu, Seoul.

서울특별시 종로구 창경궁로 185.

Admission fees varies by season, click HERE for more info.

Wardrobe: Lace dress – courtesy of Dahlia, mesh jacket – courtesy of Stills Atelier, shoes from Kurt Geiger, sunglasses from Topshop, vinyl bag – courtesy of GoldenLane.


The post Seoul visual diary: Changgyeonggung and Daeonsil, part 1 appeared first on STYLE SLICKER.

Sore Today, Strong Tomorrow

I’m generally not the biggest fan of motivational quotes.  You know, the sort that flood social media updates and get people nodding along and saying “Wow, so true!”.  Can people’s complex, multi-layered and situational problems be uplifted and solved with a a snappy, cliche-ridden (and often nonsensical) statement written in a cool Sans Serif font, accompanied by a generic stock image?  The Nike Women’s showcase for S/S 15 in New York was exactly the type of event, from which said motivational statements are borne.  “Just Do It” is arguably the godfather of these sentiments.  They were dotted everywhere at the event and in their line of communication.    Mark Parker, CEO and president of Nike, took to the stage to kick off the showcase last week and said things like “We know how much crossing the finishing line matters but so does the collective joy of that journey.”

Except at Nike, I allow myself to drink all this proverbial kool aid because by physically going from couch potato/sitting lemon to running 5-10k, these are exactly the sort of sentiments that pump through your head whether you want them to or not.  Parker stated some facts that have vast significance to how women at large are changing their lifestyle and why statements like the ones below resonate increasingly.  For the first time, women outnumber men in gym memberships.  Health and fitness apps have grown faster than any other app category.  Nike’s women’s apparel is now worth $5 billion in revenue with a view to growing it to $7 billion by 2017.  With Nike alone, 65 million women engage through social media.  Women have downloaded the Nike+ Training Club app 16 million times.  The Just Do It slogan, which was originally rendered in a blocky heavy font in 1988 – on the occasion of this special showcase dedicated to women, was all brush-stroky and without wanting to give fonts sexual identities, more feminine.

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And so we got a lot of “she” power that was bound to psyche even the hardiest of cynics.  27 powerful and inspiring sportswomen to be precise, which included the likes of marathon legends Paula Radcliffe and Joan Benoit Samuelson, Olympics gold medalists Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce ,and Allyson Felix and tennis star Li Na.  More importantly it was also a multi-generational line-up that asserted Nike’s position in the women’s activewear – they’ve been doing this for years and they’ll carry on doing it bigger and better than anyone else was the main missive.  It was interesting that I arrived in New York to hear Alexander Wang talk about performance and a lifestyle where gym merges into nightclub and that a woman is ultimately more active today and then towards the end of my trip, Nike were declaring the same.  Only their product has a conviction that is hard to fault.  The fashion world may be trying to get a slice of the fitness pie but how do you gain a woman’s trust when it comes to apparel and footwear that need to support, perform and also look good?

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The looking good was answered with a fashion show – a bit of a surprise move from Nike.  When I interviewed Parker at the event, he once again asserted that fashion is never the primary goal and that it’s the subsidiary effect.  “Often times we solve problems in unique ways that could become fashionable.  It’s not the purpose or the intent to create a fashion statement.  Performance solutions have interesting aesthetic outcomes.”  To debut a collaboration with Brazilian designer Pedro Lourenço in women’s training, both female athletes and models walked the catwalk amongst flora and fauna and new Nike campaign star Karlie Kloss (who admittedly is a bona fide runner, ballet dancer and yoga aficionado) descended from the ceiling on a platform with Joan Smalls, Damaris Lewis and Jeneil Williams behind her.  This was significant on more than one accounts.  There’s much to be said for enticing the female customer with the format of fashion – a show, the models and an editorial worthy campaign.  In this instance though, Nike have worked with Kloss for her fitness credentials though as opposed to her aesthetic ones, which rings true.  If fashion has been co-opting the surface of performance and sportswear without the technological prowess, then Nike can surely flip reverse that and borrow a few things from the fashion world, without compromising what is at the core of their product which is innovation gained from athlete interaction.  “Performance is our foundation ultimately,” said Parker.  “We had 27 athletes today – they’re 27 out of of hundreds, and really out of of millions.  From world class to everyday athletes, we have the ability with them and dig out insights that fuel the innovation.”

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0E5A9715The 1994 Nike Women “Statistics Lie” campaign (which was accompanied by a picture of Marilyn Monroe at the time)

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0E5A9731A showcase of all of Nike’s past achievements with female athletes from Paula Radcliffe’s record breaking marathon time to Cathy Freeman’s hooded “Swift Suit”

Nike’s new womenswear collaborations was the big story of the day but we were also presented with an overview of  S/S 15 product where once again aesthetics took centre stage.  Or to be more specific, the idea that aesthetics and performance can be combined so that you can wear these clothes and go from the gym out to wherever you’re going afterwards.   The printed “tights” (not sure why Nike shirk from calling them leggings) equipped with waistbands and pockets for runners and jazzed up with saturated digital prints that are placed strategically on the body, took centre stage in a myriad of patterns.

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Nike’s Flyknit, three years after its groundbreaking debut is getting wilder in colour palette and being applied to an increasing number of styles such as the popular Roshe (I’m a recent Roshe convert…).  Parker hinted at Flyknit’s yet-to-be-tapped potential for the future.  “The advancement in the type of knitting that we can do in one shoe and to o see where it’s going is incredibly exciting.  It’s in the infancy stage really.  We’ll be able to scan your foot, knit right to your foot… and you’ll see printing and digital technology come together so that the ability to customise will be very exciting.”  Like Apple, people will look to Nike expecting the next big thing, but for Parker, what is “big” to him is to evolve what he already has and move it forward into new realms.  Flyknit’s possibilities within apparel for instance is still something that I personally get excited about.  Watch this Flyknitted space…

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The main “fashion-focused” takeaway from the day would have been Nike’s collaboration with Lourenço, which will soon be available online and is currently in Nike Lab stores now.  One of my questions to Parker was how he chooses collaborators for Nike and more to the point, why doesn’t he go for the obvious (as in the biggest designer likely to generate hype) – “It’s less the name and more the approach to what they do,” he said simply.  Lourenço seems like an idiosyncratic choice from the outside but when he met with Nike, both parties found they had a common interest in innovation and technology.  “I wanted to add a sense of luxury to work out gear and I had always in mind a collection that you could merge elements from two different worlds,” said Lourenço.  Parker is equally effusive.  “In the case of Pedro Lourenço, he comes from a more luxury standpoint.  There is an awareness of performance and to function but he’ll interpret it in a way that makes it more appropriate for moving the clothes into a lifestyle mode.”  Whilst this young Brazilian designer is rethinking the way he presents his own mainline, with Nike he has come up with a beautiful collection that combines his aesthetic with Nike’s technological aspects.  You wouldn’t expect to see nude and black as a colour combo at Nike, leggings with an attached skirt across the front or flocked pixel dots on mesh but Lourenço and Nike collectively came up with a combination detailing and silhouettes that reflect both parties.  This synergy is best seen in a croc embossed neoprene jacket, originally based on a 1960s croc jacket that Lourenço had found, which Nike have transformed into a performance piece.   “Sportswear feels like such a luxury – today, it’s a luxury to being able to test new ways to manufacture clothes and to find function to find new aesthetics,”  The process of working with Nike has also made Lourenço think about the current state of fashion’s manufacture and stagnation.   “As the industry develops itself, it’s a great move for fashion to incorporate more of these elements that I’ve seen at Nike.” said Lourenço.  “Ideally for me, if I think about how fashion is established today, pret-a-porter should become something like high-tech haute couture, mixing the old and the new.  The contemporary market is what people buy and pret-a-porter should be pushing things forward.”  He wasn’t the only one to pass similar comment.  A British fashion journalist, who had never been to a Nike media trip, wondered why the fashion world doesn’t borrow more from a company like Nike.  That points to a bigger discussion about innovation within the industry, which perhaps Nike is instigating.

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unnamedThe entirely reflective outer of Pedro Lourenço’s Nike shoe

Another collaboration that was partially unveiled was even more left field than the one with Lourenço.  Try Googling Joanna F.  Schneider.  You’ll find little about this German designer who has worked for numerous sportswear and activewear brands over the years.  Schneider also works out heavily with a regular regime that means she has developed personal needs and requirements for her clothes.  This is essentially a personal collection of modular pieces that Schneider is connected with, offering something different to the world of women’s training from fold-up capes that can be worn as a warm-up piece to loose culottes with air vents.  We only got a sneak preview here of a few pieces but the full collection will drop in different stages in February and April.  It’s an interesting collaboration to get your teeth into as you wonder why it is Nike would choose to work with someone who is essentially a behind-the-scenes designer.  Basically though, Schneider knows what she’s talking about as someone who regularly works out and wears performance gear and her insight as a designer is more valuable to Nike than having a razzle dazzle profile.  It goes back to this idea of authenticity that Nike emphasises time and time again.

On the subject of collaboration, Parker’s words reveal more about why he chooses the collaborators that he does and why the projects are normally so specific and not in the fashion-norm of going for market-driven hype.  “The most important collaboration is obviously with the athlete but in terms of with fashion and industrial design – you get different perspectives which you might not have gotten on your own, which I love.  We don’t have pre-conceived notions of where things should go when we collaborate.  We don’t try to brief collaborators.  I love this kind of cross-pollination of ideas.  It’s not that the result is something we couldn’t have done but that we might not have done it.”

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Once we had gone around and done our media duties interviewing and taking notes, it was time to move.  I mean, really move.  Truth be told, I had been lagging in a couch potato mode following my New York tech disaster where I basically sat in my hotel room bed, scanning and trying to recover SD cards, watching SATC E! channel marathons and ordering too much room service.  I was desperate to break into a neuron-driven sweat.  Cue a mass collective of 300 media folk participating in a high intensity NTC Live class held at the Cunard Building, a venue that I’m familiar with because I’m normally there attending fashion shows.  This beautiful space was transformed into a church of work-out where you’d look up to see a neon-clad motivators moving atop a digital cube, flanked by more neon-clad work-out instructors.  This is where all that “fitspiration” came in handy, like the one I’ve used as the title of this post, which @NikeWomen tweeted me with.  I did emerge sore and yes, I felt stronger the next day.  Mainly because I hadn’t spent the day wallowing in my bed eating an odd combo of room service fries and longans from Chinatown.  But also because it does strengthen and empower you to see a massive group of people high-fiving each other throughout the session, cheering each other on and yes, feel some vague feeling of sisterhood.  It didn’t matter that we couldn’t follow the instructors’ moves with precision and pace.  It wasn’t about competing with each other or doing this to attain a level of physical perfection that defines who we are.  It’s about doing it for self-gratification and moving to feel good.  Here comes a quote to better summarise the experience.   And it’s a believable one courtesy of basketball star Skylar Diggins.  “It’s not about being the best.  It’s about being your best.”

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To feel that extra bit of soreness that surely means strength is on its way, kitted out in our new Pedro Lourenco pieces and in a more intimate environment, we did an intense modelFIT class.  Dubbed the class in New York that trains Victoria’s Secret models, this class was less about pace but more about stretching out those muscles you never knew you had to sculpt, tone and work on your core strength.  Being a complete newbie to such a class, neon rubber bands, light weights and sliding discs were all a novelty to me.  And my muscles are feeling the pain benefit as we speak.  I’m surprisingly keen to do it again or find something similar in London, to compliment my lonesome runs to M83.  Can you tell that the kool-aid has gone right to my head?  You’ll soon see “Strong alone, unstoppable together” popping up on my Instagram.  Accompanied by a blurry picture of a female group hug of course.

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P.S. Last time I posted about Nike, a few commenters had a LOT to say about their CSR and sustainability policy.  I have an interesting follow-up as I briefly interviewed Hannah Jones, vice president of sustainable business & innovation at Nike, aka my new favourite person because everything she said at the Nike event and in our interview was so salient and inspiring.  It will make for an interesting follow-up to my own take on “Half-Arsed Ethics”.

Silver girl

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I was wearing:

SAINT LAURENT GLITTER BOOTS
SAINT LAURENT BAG
CELINE + CARTIER BRACELETS

Photos by Andrew Arthur

The Del Val #36

700 free movies. You’re guaranteed there will be something you’ve not seen. And if you start one and don’t like it, just drop it, it’s free!


A look into the workings of one of our favorite magazines in the world, and for which we’ve proclaimed our love before.

What will be the next hot thing in tech? Consult this 27-year-old.

Let these pieces be your inspiration to head out the door and see the world on your own!

Saying you’re a “creative director” today is as easy as labeling yourself a “curator”. Both are too often thrown around, but here a major retailer calls her their Director of Creative Projects, and in this case the title is valid.

Baby pandas being adorable. There is nothing else to say.

For all of us (which is nearly everyone) who use it everyday but don’t think twice about it (unless we’re complaining because of a poor connection): the internet is amazing! Seeing it physically might as well be like exploring space (again, to nearly every one of us.)

The State of the Book, the best from all 50 of them.

A weekly round up of the best links from Delphine & Wes Del Val.?FR: La sélection de la semaine des meilleurs liens sur le web par Delphine & Wes Del Val.


By delphine and wes

Totes Wang

The thing that was ringing through my head when I tried on some of the Alexander Wang x H&M samples for funzies last week was an old Industrie magazine story that asked whether Alexander Wang could be the next Giorgio Armani – in other words, become an independently owned lifestyle brand that people know globally as a household name.

As I pulled myself taut into printed socks and body con dresses and got box fresh with a pair of AW-branded boxing gloves, the repetition of the Alexander Wang logo and typography on a lot of the pieces felt like an appropriate expression of how far Wang has come in nearly a decade of helming his own brand (2015 will mark AW’s ten year anniversary) and now steering Balenciaga.  Wang”s collaboration with H&M wouldn’t have come as any surprise despite the guerilla announcement earlier this year at Coachella, precisely because his built up universe and brand is so ripe for collaboration.  In my mind, unlike some of the pairings that H&M have come up with over the years (incidentally it’s also been ten years since H&M revolutionised high-low collaborations by working with Karl Lagerfeld), this one felt pitch perfect.  Logos flying all over your chest, thighs and legs are both tongue in cheek references to youth-ridden logomania and yesteryear sportswear but also an assertion on Wang’s part that his brand had come of age.

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Despite Wang’s ever expanding empire of collections – mainline, lingerie, T line – and of course, his work at Balenciaga, it seemed plausible that he’d carve out another niche for this particular collaboration.  And so he went for performance wear, a category that hadn’t been explored in previous H&M collabs.  At a press conference yesterday, moderated by Sally Singer of US Vogue, Wang was quick to emphasise why it was important to introduce something new as opposed to rehashing archival Wang.  “How do we really excite the consumer again?,” said Wang.  “What can we do?  It was important for me not to just reintroduce kind of things I’ve done in the past but to really have a new mind and statement to what we were offering.”  And it cleverly gives both H&M and Wang to express their chops at a sector of clothing that has grown exponentially in the past few years.  “I felt it was a genre of clothing that wasn’t discriminatory by price point. It doesn’t matter if you’re a luxury customer, advance designer customer, everyone I know works out, is active, is running around.  But I like the versatility of clothes if you’re going out, going dancing, you sweat as well, you need to move and be active.”

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0E5A9426Obviously I’m not the ball-busting, boxer babe that Wang had in mind when designing the collection.  However I did want to give it a go just to play at being a Wang-ite, if only for one night.  

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The performance aspect was something that Wang and the team at H&M took seriously.  You can’t call it performance wear and for it not to have any substance.  For instance qualities such as fabric breathability or waterproofing are tagged on to the pieces because they mean it.  “When you’re saying something is waterproof, it has to be waterproof, it can’t be water‑resistant,” asserted Wang.  “There’s so much technicality in how you word things.  A lot of the pieces are also made in Italy where knitwear factories were employed to create stand out pieces like the viscose mesh knits and the logo-ed stretch pieces.  It subverts the idea that you have to compromise on quality when you’re buying into these collabs.  “When you do the quantities that H&M does, you can produce in Italy because they give you good prices for higher quantity, et cetera, et cetera.  So the pieces were elevated,” explained Wang.  

Neat tricks such as t-shirts with magically appearing graphics when you sweat and technical knits further the sort of techie fabrication angle that Wang has been getting into both at his own line and also at Balenciaga.  “I’ve always had an infatuation with how performance and active wear is made.  I felt like it’s the most advanced in terms of fabrication, in terms of make, the way things are welded, that knits are seamlessly knit.  It’s a completely different fitting process, approval process as well.  Things really have to perform.  It’s not fashion clothes where it has to just look good, it really has to have functionality.”

ALEXANDER WANG x H&M Launch EventPhotograph from Billy Farrell Agency – wearing Meadham Kirchhoff coat with Louis Vuitton boots and Mansur Gavriel bag and looking distinctly prim for what would be a hi-energy sweaty affair inside a track and field coliseum up in Harlem. 

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0E5A9624The opening act of athelets who bounced up and down on trampolines and crawled the walls like ninjas

Of course the reality is that the majority of people buying the pieces probably won’t be seriously working out or doing 30k runs in these clothes.  Wang hit the nail on the head when he himself admitted “I don’t do sports but I wear sportswear.”  The collection is a culmination of the stylistic meeting point between sportswear and fashion.  The fashion show with its sports core styling said as much.  The girls might have been wielding hockey sticks and swinging boxing gloves whilst strapped up in lace-up baseball and American football gear but they were stylistic props to what was essentially a collection of badass sportswear-tinged clothes that people can easily layer up, make their own, and of course afford to get their Wang on (literally what with all the text).  No doubt about it, they’ll be queuing up for the name and the “dopeness” of it all as opposed to the functionality come November 6th.

Wang’s inclusion of items such as boxing gloves, yoga mats and swimming goggles is on-theme but also on-message in the lifestyle aspect of Alexander Wang.  They already create an Objects collection, which coats everyday items with a Wang-like sheen.  These novelty (although they are fully functional) items are a natural extension of his objects and further re-iterates the potential of a future Alexander Wang that might have its own range of towels or bedding a la Ralph Lauren or indeed Giorgio Armani.

The H&M x Alexander Wang extravaganza last night was the important jigsaw puzzle piece to explaining why Wang goes far beyond just designing product and why this will probably be the main jewel of H&M’s collaboration crown.   He is the sort of designer that is heavily involved in every aspect from ensuring that the bass line and grimy horns of a soundtrack throb in your brain long after a show, to creating bespoke boxing glove sponge fingers for people to root for Team Wang.  That’s before we get to the actual clothes where extreme styling and spot-on casting convey more than just garments on a back – it’s that intangible attitude.   The thing I’ve always found fascinating with Wang is, whether you dig his aesthetic or not, at the very least, you can’t NOT believe in it because of the pure dedication to what is a thorough vision.   That’s what we got last night.  An energetic assertion of the Wang’s brand values, heightened and amplified with H&M’s support.

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As per every H&M collaboration launch event, following the show, we fashion peeps get all uncivilised and pushy in the pop-up shop where we can buy the collection three weeks before it hits stores.  Well noted that the cut-out asymmetric crop tops with yellow edging and the spongey WANG neoprene sweatshirts were the hits of the night.

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After sweating it out in the pop-up shop, we went over to the stage where the rumours that Missy Eliott were stormily swirling around, half-confirmed by the American press who had gotten the heads up beforehand.  Sharaya J’s appearance confirmed it and for want of a better word, werked the AW X H&M pieces she was wearing.  She emboded exactly what Wang was saying about the clothes really performing, whether you’re running on the streets or dancing in a club.

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I reverted back to teenage me and was basically screaming like a gerbil for pretty much the whole time Missy Elliott was on stage.  With my big DSLR, I somehow got mistaken as the pit media so I was right next to the stage, within touching distance of the great Missy.  After telling us to put our phones down so that we could move (I did try to abstain but I couldn’t quite get rid of my social media itch), she broke out all the faves…  Gossip Folk, Work It, Pass that Dutch, Get Ur Freak On.  Not to gush or anything.  Ok, actually I will because it was truly epic.  A real deal legend performance that didn’t feel shoe-horned for effect at a fashion event.  The synergy was even clearer when Wang himself got up on stage and was shaking his thing next to Missy.

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View on Instagram

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Holler!!! Get ur freak on…. #alexanderwangxhm View on Instagram

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I’m going to put forward one minor quibble.  The inclusion of Andy Caroll in the ad campaign.  Forgetting the fact that I’m an Arsenal fan with biased opinions on players, H&M and Wang could have picked a better footballer who’s equally easy on the eye.  It’s still mega LOLZ to see an English Premier League footballer being part of the print and TV campaign lineup that includes Isabeli Fontana, Raquel Zimmermann and Joan Smalls.  Speaking of which, we got a sneak preview of the slick TV campaign, which resembled a trailer for a 21st century espionage film.  When the TV spots start rolling at the end of this month, it will only build up the anticipation of what will probably be one of H&M’s most successful collaborations to date.  Who’s lining up come November 6th?  Why, the many many folks out there that wear sportswear but don’t do sports of course…

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California house

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It’s official, still a bit strange to say but… I moved to Los Angeles.
I know, it’s already been a year and a half going back and forth and I will always go back to Europe every month and a half/two months for work (my own company still is in Milano for now), in addition to travel the world in the meanwhile.
Where’s the big change then? This time everything is getting more real: I found a place in Hollywood and I’m ready to live my personal Californian dream, spending most of my time here.
Super excited and a bit scared at the same time. Wish me good luck :)

E’ ufficiale, è ancora un po’ strano da dire ma.. Mi sono trasferita a Los Angeles.
Lo so, è ormai un anno e mezzo che faccio avanti ed indietro e tornerò in Europa ogni mese e mezzo/due mesi per lavoro (la mia società è per ora ancora a Milano), oltre a continuare a viaggiare in giro per il mondo nel frattempo.
Qual è il cambiamento quindi? Questa volta è tutto più reale: ho preso una casa a Hollywood e sono pronta a vivere il mio personale sogno Californiano, passando qui la maggior parte del mio tempo.
Iper entusiasta ed un pò spaventata allo stesso tempo. Fatemi un grosso in bocca al lupo :)

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I was wearing:

CELINE WEDGES
RED VALENTINO SWEATER
CELINE KNOT BRACELET
SAINT LAURENT BRACELET
CARTIER JUSTE UN CLOU + CARTIER LOVE BRACELET
HERMES KELLY BAG
DSQUARED2 SUNGLASSES

Photos by Andrew Arthur

Elie Saab

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The Coveteur and I back together: after they took a sneak peek in my New York suitcase and discovered my Milano house (and wardrobe) here we are this time in Paris, at Elie Saab’s appartment, playing the modern princess with my favourite dresses of the libanese designer.
Discover the whole story on The Coveteur.

Io e The Coveteur di nuovo insieme: dopo essersi intrufolati nella mia valigia a New York e nella mia casa milanese eccoci questa volta a Parigi, più precisamente nell’appartamento di Elie Saab, giocando a fare la moderna principessa con i miei abiti preferiti del designer libanese.
Scoprite tutta la storia su The Coveteur.

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PARIS, October 2014
Wearing ELIE SAAB
Shot by Jake Rosenberg for THE COVETEUR

Vintage Dior

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Paris as a background, wearing a Dior vintage dress and the new iconic Fendi sandals.

Parigi come sfondo, indossando un abito vintage di Dior e i nuovi iconici sandali di Fendi.

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I was wearing:

FENDI SANDALS (ss 2015)
DIOR VINTAGE DRESS (from Vintage Delirium)
LOUIS VUITTON EARRINGS
MONTBLANC WATCH

Photos by Andrew Arthur

Red lips in Paris

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When in Paris… Try red lips, shiny glitter shoes and the most beautiful Mary Katrantzou dress.

E quando ti trovi a Parigi… Prova rossetto rosso sulle labbra, scarpe scintillanti ed il più bel vestito di Mary Katrantzou.

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I was wearing:

SAINT LAURENT GLITTER SHOES
MARY KATRANTZOU DRESS
LOUIS VUITTON EARRINGS
CHLOE MAXI RING
CHOPARD + BULGARI + CARTIER RINGS
PRADA BAG
CELINE SUNGLASSES

Photos by Gregorio Capineri Tosetti

Lolita / Paris

It’s been a while since our last Paris City Guide and for this one I thought Lolita would be perfect! I always ask her about the cool new spots when I come to visit and she never disappoints! So, here is Lolita’s Paris!

What are three words that define Paris?
Electric, character and grey.

What makes someone a Parisienne?
A girl who doesn’t brush her hair and is polite enough to get her way.

How do you get around the city? Metro, bike, walk, scooter?
I love the bus! I know all bus lines… it’s scary.

Any secrets to navigating the Paris streets?
If your not a native to Paris, I’d suggest an iPhone

What is your favorite arrondissement and why?
The 6th, Rive Gauche always, because it’s the most refined.

What hotel do you recommend to visiting friends?
Hotel l’Hotel on rue des Beaux arts or Relais Christine on rue Christine, both in the 6th.

The best place for…

A café: Telescope, rue Villedo, 75002

A baguette: Any boulangerie that has hot baguette just out of the oven. Boulangerie Carton, rue de Buci.

A glass of champagne: I prefer a glass of cold wine but I’d say Cafe de Flore or La Palette.

What is one restaurant you must eat at while in Paris?
Ferdi on rue du Mont-Thabor in the 1st, Le Dauphin on Avenue Parmentier in the 11th or Chez George, rue du Mail in the 2nd.

What’s the best thing you can get at Picard?
I havent been in a while, but I remember their fondant au chocolat like it was yesterday!

Where do you like to go out with friends?
I like an apartment party otherwise any club where my friend Clara 3000 is DJing.

I have to ask, because of a bit of a Studio obsession with French hair, where do you get yours done?
I get mine done at David Mallet, rue Notre Dame des Victoires. It is the best! My color is done by the wonderful Louis, supervised by genius, Remi.

Do you have a favorite spa? What do you get done there?
My favorite spa is Maison Popincourt on rue de Verneuil for the Iyashi Dome, a Japanese sauna.

Where is the best place to get a manicure?
Le Bon Marche at the OPI corner.

Where do you go to get in a good work out?
I’ve started boxing recently but otherwise aqua biking at Maison Popincourt.

What are some of your favorite places to shop?
Le Bon Marche and Chez Moi.

Where can you find the best vintage? (And by best vintage, we mean all the Birkins…)
Les 3 Marches, rue Guisarde in the 6th or the flea market of Saint Ouen.

The best park to spend an afternoon in?
Jardin du Luxembourg.

Is it ever okay to wear a beret in Paris?
Unless its worn ironically, then non, merci.

What is one souvenir to bring back from Paris?
Saucisson.

Pharmacie must haves?
1. Créaline Bioderma
2. Doliprane, for headaches.
3. Magnesium Vials by Oligosol for energy.
4. Botot tooth paste

The best view of the Tour Eiffel?
Trocadero I’d say, even if I hardly ever go.

One thing you can do when visiting Paris to look like a Parisian and not a tourist?
No backpacks, no deliberate comfortable clothing, no socks with sneakers, no map and make an effort to speak French.

Okay, now some really hard questions…

Left Bank or Right Bank? Left
Louvre or d’Orsay? Louvre
Croque Madame or Croque Monsieur? Madame
Coco or Karl? Karl
Macaron or Chouquette? Chouquette
Monoprix or Monoprix? Monoprix or la Grande Epicerie, obviously.

Click here for more city guides.

HK visual diary: Exploring the neighbourhood of Wan Chai

Hotel Indigo

Hotel Indigo

Hotel Indigo

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I couldn’t believe this was my second trip to Hong Kong this summer (totalling 4 or 5 trips by December), it was probably the most relaxing trip I’ve ever had despite the burning oven temperature, high humidity and sweating buckets 24/7, I resorted to wearing wardrobe basics (think loose tee, hot pants and untrendy flip flops), but I love going back to my motherland.  This part of the trip was partly a collaboration with IHG Rewards Club (see the post on Disneyland Hong Kong) and an extended holiday for myself, picking up where I left off from June.  I chose to stay at Hotel Indigo* in Wan Chai for 3 nights because of its location and it’s close to my favourite hangout spots in Sheung Wan and Central, I’ve never had a chance to explore the neighbourhood of Wan Chai properly hence why I picked the area for this particular reason…great vibe, architecture, cafes and restaurants and local market!  Wan Chai district is one of the busiest commercial areas and certainly one most of the first developed in HK.

One morning, I woke up early before sunrise and decided to explore the area to beat the jet lag, the temperature was around 28’C, goodness it was baking and humid outside, I had to walk around the neighbourhood with an umbrella just like any other locals.  After spending 2 hours snapping away from Queen’s Road East to the Expo Promenade, I arrived back at the hotel with new clusters of freckles on my face, I even applied layers of SPF40 sunscreen before hand.  Oh boo.  Without further ado, enjoy the photos!

Wan Chai

 The Old Wan Chai Post Office, it’s the oldest surviving building in Hong Kong located on Queen’s Road East, opposite Hotel Indigo. The building is now an Environmental Resource Centre.

Wan Chai

 The infamous Blue House on Stone Nullah Lane.

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Early morning at Wan Chai street market.

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 Empty street at 8am on Johnston Road.

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 A double decker tram covered with overall advertising livery outside The Pawn on Johnston Road.

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 I love Hong Kong red taxis!

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Left: More tram spotting on Johnston Road.

Before: Before morning rush hour on Hennessey Road.

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Breakfast time.

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 Early morning tai chi at Grand Hyatt.

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 Expo Promenade overlooking Central District.

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*Info on Hotel Indigo: Opened in April 2013, Hotel Indigo is an upscale contemporary boutique hotel located in Wan Chai, part of the InterContinental Hotel Group.  The hotel has 29 floors, with 138 rooms and 6 suites, it has a glass-bottomed rooftop infinity pool adjacent to the Skybar.

In collaboration with IHG Rewards Club, the stay included a 1 night stay (from 45,000 points) at Hotel Indigo using reward points provided by IHG Rewards Club as part of the travel project to conclude with the Disneyland HK trip, and additional 2 nights at a reduced media rate.  Thanks to Hotel Indigo for accommodating me!


The post HK visual diary: Exploring the neighbourhood of Wan Chai appeared first on STYLE SLICKER.

40 things about Paris

Paris copertina1angelina patisserie Angelina Patisserie, 226 Rue Rivoli

2 parisAu-lapin-agile, great spot to enjoy a Cabaret show and have dinner

3amelie Amélie Poulain Movie

4la societe restaurant La Sociètè Restaurant, with a great view on St-Germain-des-Prés Church

5le george restaurantLe Georges Restaurant, Place Georges Pompidou 19, rue Beaubourg

6YSL-fotografia2 Yves Saint Laurent

7hotel du nord restaurantHôtel du Nord, made famous by the homonymous film by Marcel Carné

8pretty_box_ Pretty Box vintage clothing Shop, 46 rue de Saintonge

 9le Progres cafe Vintage taste Bistrò: Le Progrès 7 rue des Trois Frères

010chez maxim Chez Maxim, Art nouveau Restaurant

011jean patou-portrait Jean Patou

012eiffel tower Audrey Hepburn on the Eiffel Tower

013balenciagadesigner Cristobal Balenciaga

14 parisPierre Hermé, tasteful patisserie in Paris

015centre georges pompidou Centre-Georges-Pompidou

16 parisThe iconic Moulin Rouge

016.2 cafe des 2 moulins Cafe des 2 Moulins, 15 Rue Lepic

IMG_2696-1024x768Hidden Treasures at the Marche aux Puces (antique market in Paris)

017Coco-Chanel-thumb Gabrielle Bonheur Chanel

parijs-hotel-amour Hotel Amour, great gem in Pigalle district

19 ParisAmants reguliers

LV Paris Legendary Louis Vuitton trunks

022Yann_Tiersen Yann Tiersen

023grazie pizza Grazie Restaurant, 91 boulevard Beaumarchais

024 Hermès carrè

025 Marie Antoinette film

026 Meudon Observatorie

027Ralph’s Design Restaurant, 173, boulevard Saint-Germain

Schermata 09-2456927 alle 15.53.22Canal Saint-Martin

28 paris Rei Kawakubo – Yohji Yamamoto for Paper Magazine

029spa guerlain Guerlain SPA

030pierre Balmain Pierre Balmain

031coco chanel Coco Chanel’s home, 31 di rue Cambon

032merci concept store For Art lovers enjoy installations at Merci concept store, 111 boulevard Beaumarchais

033colette Colette, 213 Rue Saint Honoré 

034hotel amour  Hotel Amour

035ratatouille Ratatouille Movie

036christian dior Christian Dior

037jean-paul gaultierJean Paul Gaultier

39 parisParc Buttes Chaumont Paris

My Carry-On

Ahhhh my carry-on…

I already told you I was able to minimize my packing for this fashion week, but my carry-on is the same every season. It’s the most important bag I pack every trip, because inside I have my camera, my computer, and all of the essentials for getting me through a long flight…. So, here are a few of them!

Eye mask: So I can get a little bit of rest– this one is extra comfy on the eyes!

Headphones: They are noise cancelling, so when I am sleeping (or watching a movie) it’s perfect.

Cashmere scarf & socks: I always get SO cold on planes (which I hate) so I always pack a big cozy wrap. And a pair of socks to go with it!

Beauty products: I try to keep this pretty minimal. In here I keep some lipbalm, face lotion, hand cream, an eye serum, hand sanitizer and a red lipstick for when I get to my destination.

A snack: Sometimes that airplane food is well…not the best… so I try to have a healthy snack with me (okay and I also bring some chocolate…)

What are some of your carry-on essentials?

Suitcase, Rimowa; Eye mask, Muji; Scarf and socks, White + Warren; Pouch, Comme de Garçons; Passport cover, Smythson; Headphones, Monster; Avène Eau Thermale; Face Lotion, Kahina Giving Beauty; All About Eyes Serum, Clinique.


By admin

Toga’s Chaos

>> I just left St Pancras station about an hour ago to head over to Paris in what the last leg of what has been a whirlwind month.  I know I say I’m frightfully busy every time I’m fashion-weeking and you’re all rolling your eyes at me when street style images make it look like I’m just loitering around on the streets with my phone, but this season, I promise, I REALLY have been busy.  This BBC iPlayer thing happened (I haven’t yet watched it – I can’t actually listen to myself speak because it’s too excruciating) where you see me dosing up on eye drops because the night before I was at Somerset House doing a shoot for the The Daily having just got off a plane from New York an hour before.  And so and so forth.  Yadda yadda yadda, I’ve been busy.

But anyhow, back to St. Pancras. just as I was on the platform, I peered over into the space at the very grand St Pancras Renaisssance Hotel where Japanese label Toga had their second presentation in London.  This time, it felt like they had made more of an inroad on an international audience beyond the core of people will have always known about Toga.  I love watching these Japanese secrets being unleashed and impressing.  As I was leaving, it was cool to overhear people go, “That was quite good wasn’t it?” as if they were surprised that it should be so.  My first show in Paris will be Anrealage, who are showing for the first time.  Having been to three of their shows in Tokyo, I’m hoping it will be as mesmerising an experience in the city of lights as it is in designer Kunihiko Morinaga’s hometown.  He will sure to be another Japanese revelation, following in mega success stories like Sacai.

But I digress again.  Toga was a whole lotta good.  It had a whole lotto things going on but it was all good.  They have a real knack of making the unexpected look convincing.  A neon pink organza ruffle poking out of a maroon sweater paired with a sheer knife pleat skirt is a odd take on prim but it works.  As does a demi jacket hybridised with a tailored shirt adorned with mirrored panels.  There’s contradiction and contrast aplenty – my kind of c words.  For every satin corset work, for frou ruffle or pretty plisse pleat, there’s a juxtaposing foil in a voluminous silhouette, a pair of jeans (beautifully patchworked together with invisible thread), or a wide buckled belt to weight things down.  The asymmetric metal earrings, the patent tasselled clutches and the netting sandals also gave the collection the sort of chaotic feeling that is at the centre of designer Yasuko Furata’s entire ethos for Toga.  There is a deliberate awkwardness to the way the silhouettes are mashed together but taken apart, Toga still excels.  Whenever I’ve seen Toga on rails in a shop or int he showroom, it’s always all too easy to beeline for individual statement making pieces that are interesting all by themselves.  Toga may not be an editorial secret anymore but the tactile touch of the product all is still something that only a few get to experience.  I urge people to go and try and get ye into some Toga if you can and feel it for yourself.

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Marni’s Flower Market

A twenty minute walk on foot from the Marni show this morning, along which I got to pat a cute dog, see a more quiet and residential side to Milan and then arrive at Marni’s Flower Market, was enough to perk my entire Milan Fashion Week up.  When you’re funnelled around shows and appointments for hours on end, stuck in traffic, it’s a pretty distorted view of Mllan.  Therefore Marni’s Flower Market on the one day of full one sunshine we got during the week was respite indeed.

Marni gently kickstarted celebrations for its 20th anniversary, not with a private exclusive party in the murky depths of night time but an open-to-the-public flower market held in the beautiful Rotonda della Besana with proceeds going to children’s charity Vimala, aiding Tibetan children in India.  The product, created exclusively for the market for all your dream garden needs, had a similarly global humanitarian approach.  Brightly coloured with zebra’s faces came from Zambia and animal wire sculptures of giraffes and flamingoes were made by women in Colombia.

Virgin green-fingered me is just beginning to get stuck into the process of nurturing an outdoor space.  If I was living in Milan, I would have gone buck wild at the market, buying up enticing packets of seeds, bulbs, garden chairs, PVC bags with primary hued gardening tools.  The biggest sellers of the day were definitely the printed PVC tote bags, in various sizes, displayed as vase and bouquet holders.  Through the totes and throughout the market as seen on the bouquet wrapping paper, and at the craft stations set up for children, where you could make yourself a printed kite or, some beaded and floral jewellery, Marni’s aesthetic could be seen everywhere.  It really asserted a lifestyle element that you can see glimpses off through Marni’s clothes and the stores and in their participations at events like Salone Mobile but here was fleshed out completely, down to the stall selling various kinds of carrot cake or the uniforms the market stall staff were wearing (layered boat neck top, a perfectly tied neckchief, cropped trousers, a navy apron and hand painted canvas shoes).  It was a real generous act of giving, not just in the charity aspect but in the aesthetics and the fact that you felt like you could stay there for a while and really enjoy it as opposed to stopping by five minutes just to make some mandatory appearance.

Seen in tandem with the S/S 15 collection that Marni sent out before the market opened up  and you could see the correlation between the two.  What started off in neutral jutes and linens built up to a floral crescendo where prints of daffodils, lilies and daisies – the recognisable heroes of a garden – are blown up, abstracted and given a strong textural treatment in different ways be it through metallic jacquards, a crepe-embroidered fluffy technique or printed leather.  Marni has always excelled at flower power but here it was also the asymmetric shapes, built up by petal-like curves and added swathes of pleating that gave the collection some substance, weighted down by the Teva-esque sandals and circular pipe heels.  And the swinging drawstring bags and fringed totes?  Big enough for a shop and a gander at Marni’s Flower Market for sure.  The show to market experience was a treat.  Just wish my garden could have benefited from Marni’s act of generosity.

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NYFW Day 5

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I was wearing:

CELINE PUMPS
VALENTINO DRESS
LANVIN HAT
CELINE BOX BAG

Hair by Redken, makeup by Nikki DeRoest
Photos by Leslie Kirchhoff

 

Disneyland Hong Kong

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Kit Lee x IHG Rewards Club, Disneyland HK

Kit-Lee-x-IHG Rewards Club, Disneyland HK

Kit-Lee-x-IHG Rewards Club, Disneyland HK

Kit-Lee-x-IHG Rewards Club, Disneyland HK

Kit-Lee-x-IHG Rewards Club, Disneyland HK

Kit-Lee-x-IHG Rewards Club, Disneyland HK

Kit-Lee-x-IHG Rewards Club, Disneyland HK

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Kit-Lee-x-IHG Rewards Club, Disneyland HK

Kit-Lee-x-IHG Rewards Club, Disneyland HK

Kit-Lee-x-IHG Rewards Club, Disneyland HK

Kit-Lee-x-IHG Rewards Club, Disneyland HK

Kit-Lee-x-IHG Rewards Club, Disneyland HK

Kit-Lee-x-IHG Rewards Club, Disneyland HK

My current occupation as a freelance photographer and blogger allows me to travel all over the world (and I haven’t been to America yet!), for business or pleasure I view it as a pleasurable and invaluable experience, and I’m willing to take a chance at something totally worthwhile for my life and work opportunity.

It wasn’t long until after I returned to London from my business-holiday trip to Hong Kong this summer, IHG Rewards Club* has offered me an opportunity that I couldn’t resist and I was suffering post-holiday blues, who wouldn’t want another holiday! IHG Rewards Club has given me 289,000 points to tailor-made my own trip and experience, my immediate thought was I wanted to return to HK, my holiday there was incomplete due to work commitment. Using the rewards points to spend on any IHG partners, I was able to book a return flights from London to Hong Kong with Virgin Atlantic in combined with my frequent flyer air miles from Virgin Atlantic Flying Club, an overnight stay at Hotel Indigo** in Wan Chai, and three tickets to Disneyland HK with my lovely duo, Winnie Nip of Diamond Canopy from London who was visiting in HK at the same week as me, and the loveliest Sam Wong of Sam Is Home.

So what is IHG Rewards Club? IHG Rewards Club (part of the Intercontinental Hotels Group) is the first and largest hotel loyalty programme, with more 77 million members globally and it’s free to sign up. There are over 4,000 hotels worldwide, you then start earning points on your stays that convert to rewards club points, redeem points on flights, free nights at a hotel of your choice, and perhaps spend the points on a spa-cation for two!

Guess what? The IHG Rewards Club points does not expire!

Stay tuned for my next post on Hotel Indigo and the neighbourhood of Wan Chai.


* In collaboration with IHG Rewards Club, they provided me with points to use to create a unique experience.

**I stayed additional 2 nights at Hotel Indigo (with media rate) before returning to my family home in North Territories.


The post Disneyland Hong Kong appeared first on STYLE SLICKER.

Nyfw day 4

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I was wearing:

MOSCHINO BY JEREMY SCOTT TOTAL LOOK

Hair by Redken, makeup by Nikki DeRoest
Photos by Andrew Arthur

40 things about Milan

Copertina Milano01 MIC’S: Great Italian tapas. Via Pietro Maroncelli 15, Milano

02 Fonderie Milanesi: The perfect place for a romantic dinner or a relax brunch with extremely fresh products.

03 Brera, bohemian district of Milan, one of my favorites!

04 10 Corso Como: great fashion concept store and caffè. Corso Como 10, Milano

05Vintage Delirium by Franco Jacassi is a real treat for lovers of vintage clothing. You can find vintage products from the most famous fashion brands. Via Giuseppe Sacchi, 3 20121 Milano.

06 Fioraio Bianchi: Bistrot parigino nel cuore bohèmienne della città. Via Montebello.

07 Giorgio Armani

08 Casa Museo Boschi di Stefano

09 A Casa eatery, restaurant in Milan

010Bullfrog Barber shop

ellevn-nhung-chuyen-tinh-trong-gioi-thoi-trang-stefano-gabbana-e-domenico-dolce8Domenico Dolce & Stefano Gabbana

011 Osteria “Ex Mauri” | via Via Gaetano de Castillia 28

012 The Saint mariner Tattoo shop, via Carlo Tenca 10, Milano

013  Antonio Marras Milano, Boutique

014 Sheraton Diana Majestic, viale Piave, 42, 20129 Milano

015Nicola Trussardi

016Cafè Trussardi

017Palazzo Clerici

018Salone del Mobile, Milano

019Spazio Rossana Orlandi 

ottavio-missoni-designerOttavio Missoni

021Dry Milano, Pizzeria and Bar.

022Lambrate Design District.

0231380, Via Enrico Annibale Butti, 7

024Club 1930. TOP SECRET!

025Fendi Sisters

026Drogheria Milanese

027Via della Spiga, Luxury Fashion district, Milan.

028Gianni Versace

030Palazzo Parigi, Corso di Porta Nuova 1

FENICOTTERI VILLA INVERNIZZI PER PAGINE ANIMALIVilla Invernizzi Milano

0324Cento, Via Campazzino 14

033Shambala, Via Ripamonti, 337

034Miuccia Prada

035Terrazza Martini Milano

036Bulgari Hotel, Via Privata Fratelli Gabba 7/b

037Bar Basso, Via Plinio, 39

038LATTERIA LA CICALA Via Bellotti 13

039Plastic Milano

040Nhow Hotel Milano

041De Santis: one of the Best “panini” in the city

Nyfw day 3

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Day three of my New York fashionweek: as first look of the day I opted for a total black outfit.
The focus obviously was on the hair that, thanks to the Redken team and Sara Weinstock diamond headpieces, shined even more than usual :)

Giorno tre della mia fashionweek newyorkese: come primo look ho optato per un outfit total black.
Il focus era naturalmente sui capelli che, grazie al team di Redken ed ai diamanti di Sara Weinstock, hanno brillato ancora più del solito :)

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I was wearing:

ALEXANDER WANG SANDALS
CUSHNIE ET OCHS DRESS
SARA WEINSTOCK DIAMOND HEADPIECES
PRADA BAG
CELINE SUNGLASSES

Hair by Redken, makeup by Nikki DeRoest
Photos by Leslie Kirchhoff

NYFW Day 2

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Here is another look from my second day of NYFW: total black and white contrasts with a giant hat and the funny Karlito.
PS: Watch how my day looked like on TheScene.com!

Ecco qui un altro look dal mio secondo giorno della NYFW: total bianco e nero con un maxi cappello e il funny Karlito.
PS: Guardate come è stata la mia giornata su TheScene.com!

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I was wearing:
GUCCI STUDDED LOAFERS
VALENTINO DRESS
HERMES KELLY BAG
FENDI KARLITO BAG CHAIN
STYLESTALKER HAT

Photos by Leslie Kirchhof
Hair by Redken and make up by Nikki De Roest

FASHION WEEK ESSENTIAL

Fashion Insiders Guide

Fashion insiders’ guide

The perfect guide if your going to Paris for Fashion Week later this month.