Sunday, July 25, 2010

Frock it like it's hot

While in Sydney this week I was lucky enough to visit Frock Stars at the Powerhouse Museum (Open 22 April - 10 October), 2 1/2 hours later I left with a massive smile permanently fixed to my face.  If you get a chance you have to go and see it, the opportunity to view a Dion Lee dress up close was fan-freaking-tastic.  No picture showed this dress in all its elegance, the intricate detail and the eatable sorbet blue was breathtaking.

The exhibition only got better; stepping through the door instantly you are met with a runway of the most inspirational and eye catching pieces from each year of Australian Fashion Week.  Then there were examples of the contents within the front row goodie bags, jealously doesn't even come close to the feeling after seeing the countless designer products they recieve.  With excitement bubbling out of me I then plonked myself on a front row seat enabling me to listen to all the big buyers and editors as they discussed what they look for and how they feel when watching a show.

This exhibition had so many interactive things to do and every process was explained.  The big names all had videos and games. Examples of what it is like for every person involved in Australian Fashion Week  - PR people, production companies, makeup and hair stylists, models and designers - is explored and dissected.  

I normally don't sit and listen to every video or read every card in a museum but nothing could pull me away.  I watched casting calls and the speedy perfection of makeup artists.  Time just escapes you in this exhibition, I could have stayed much longer but an airplane was waiting with my name on it.  It was love and just reconfirmed that this is the area I have to get into, nobody what!

Below are some pictures from the exhibition.

Love Me.

(Images: Powerhouse Museum website)

Friday, July 16, 2010

Vintage Secrets

I promised you the feature that was printed in the Fashion Journal (Issue 98), so here it is... now credited.

Ask any fashionista and she'll tell you one thing; nothing completes an outfit quite like a one-off vintage find.  Take some time away from the high street and get the girls together for a day of vintage shopping.  Dig, rummage and trawl through the racks - you'll never know what unique treasures you might find.

Vintage and recyled fashion promises its fair share of trashy pieces, but hidden amongst the spandez and crochet there are sure to be some gems.  Try on massive minks, retro dresses, leather jackets, funky flannies and eccentric shoes.  Channel your inner Marilyn, Audrey and Twiggy, and get kitted out in everything from weird to wacky to wonderful.  Sound like fun?  Here's the ultimate guide to vintage shopping in Melbourne.

The city's vintage movement was led by the north, so this is a fitting place to start.  If vintage shoes, boots and bags are your thing, look no further than Currency (246 Brunswick St, Fitzroy).  Here you'll find accessories that will effortlessly transform your wardrobe from drab to fab.

Just around the corner is Nook (258 Johnston St, Fitzroy), a fairly new addition to the vibrant vintage shopping scene north of the city.  This store opened in January this year and has an incredible collection of vintage apparel for guys and girls, along with homewares and a wide range of accessories.  With an incredible collection of one off pieces of costume jewellery from the UK and super helpful staff, Nook is fast becoming one of our favourite vintage stops.

Head to the northern end of Lygon Street and you'll soon stumble across The Pink Shop/The Shop With No Name (136 Lygon St, Brunswick East).  This quirky boutique offers uber-cool pieces at refreshingly affordable prices.  With shoes, jeans, dresses, belts and everything in between, the store will inspire you to get creative and express your individual style.

Clothes aren't the only vintage goods worthy of your cash.  Vintage Garage (318 Smith St, Collingwood) has just opened and we're already hooked.  Spend hours rummaging through the piles of old radios, telephones, TVs, couches, bookcases, lamps and other shabby-chic decor.  Finally set your sights on their collection of fashion and accessories.  We think we may have died and gone to vintage heaven!

Come back to earth and take a bayside detour to Hampton.  Vintage Rose (402 Hampton St, Hampton) offers divine bespoe and vintage inspired fashion.  The gorgeous and talented girls here work with vintage lace and other fabrics to create their lovely designs.  Take advantage of the special styling service and you'll come out looking head-to-toe 'vintalicious'.  And it's nice to know that the vintage aesthetic is achievable sans the musty scent.

Next call the boys and get them to meet you at Recycle Republic (125 Auburn Rd, Hawthorn).  Check out the amazing vintage finds amongst sample collection from Scandinavian and European labels for men, women and children.  Laugh at the guys trying to squeeze into skinny pants or wrestle them into a grandpa hat.  They'll forgive the force when they see how stylish they can look on the cheap.

A vintage shopping spree wouldn't be complete without a fur coat fix, so squeeze in a visit to Linda Black (151 Chapel St, Windsor).  Make like Carrie Bradshaw or Cruella De Vil and parade around in full length coats or mid length jackets.  If you're not comfortable covered in fur, invest in a little mink stole for a hint of vintage glamour.

You've managed to giggle your way through racks and racks of unknown and bizarre clothes.  It's finally time to grab some designer vintage.  Our Fabulous Wardrobe (Shop 4, Village Way Arcade, 501 Toorak Rd, Toorak) is a treasure trove of recycled high-end gear.  Think Chanel, YSL, Prada and Versace - pure luxury at a fraction of the price.

Still want more?  ML Vintage (Suite 3, 7 Almeida Cresent, South Yarra) has one of the biggest and most impressive collections of recylced designer clothing we've ever seen.  With a whole wall dedicated to Missoni, if you've saved your pennies and are ready for a big vintage splurge, this is definitely the place to do it.

By the end of the day your feet will be aching and your wallet will probably look a little thin, but it will all be worthwhile for a day of fun and one-off purchases.

Love Me.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Toying Around

I am toying up whether the idea of this is cool or not, "Kidult" play-themed products.  Lego has just launched a line of adult jewellery that is adorned with, well, lego pieces.  It seems this is beoming a new trend with Play-Doh also messing around with a perfume line.  What's next, Barbie bringing out an adult fashion line?  Cabbage Patch kids making hair products?  Action Men punching out cuff links?

When I checked out some of Lego's jewellery I have to admit - some of it - was rather cute, but I'm skeptical to why they're doing this.  Are they just money greedy or aren't the kids whining enough for their produce?  Or is that the same thing?  So many questions, so little time, for kidult is upon us.  We either have to hide under the bed or beg out parentals (bosses) for some extra cash and relish this new trend.

Love Me.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Tailor Made

Sad news today, my feature wasn't published in the Fashion Journal.  Good news, neither were the other interns, so it wasn't just mine.  I know that shouldn't make me happy but it does.  The work was done so I thought I'd post it for you lot.  You may recall I've done a similar story but this one has a couple of recommendations.  I'm not going to lie, I don't have the final edit but still enjoy this version and send in your (constructive) criticism.  I nearly forgot, I did get a short feature published in FJ which I will post later this week.  Again there is some bad news, I wasn't credited for my 700 words.  Ah well next time... cross my fingers.  The life of an intern!

Love Me.

Clothes are made on mass, it's a fact.  Chain stores produce thousands of the same top, shirt, dress, pants, jeans and accessories.  It is hard to wear truly unique clothes in commercial Australia for it seems they value money over quality and diversity.  There comes a time when you don’t want to regurgitate trends.  When this day hits there is only one thing to do: get on the custom-made bandwagon.

Businessmen have been privy to this information for decades.  Bespoke has been around since the 19th Century.  It is traditionally when shirts and suits have been tailored for men.  Custom-made clothing has only developed since the beginning of this long-established art form and now you can get shoes, jeans, jewellery, t-shirts and underwear all made to your exact specifications.

Don’t think plain, drab and boring.  St Looi Blues in Sydney will teach you that even the quirkiest person will be able to create their next shoe obsession.  They have a range of different leathers and fabrics.  St Looi Blues has even more colours and prints than your heart could desire.  Every wanted emerald green flats?  How about floral printed leather lace ups?  Or even black, brown, green and blue striped shoes? Nothing is out of reach, and all your dreams could be answered. 

If your dream of the perfect shoe is a little less ‘epic’ then Shoes of Prey may have the answer.  They’re an online store started by self proclaimed “fashion geeks”, Mike Knapp, Michael Fox and Jodie Fox.  Their current range offers more than 3 trillion combinations and continues to grow.

Every corner you turn there seems to be ‘muffin tops’ oozing out at you.  Max Olinjnk is helping to stop this unfortunate trend through his company Note To Self.  Olinjnk makes bespoke jeans as well as his general collection.  For men his styles range from straight leg, easy fit and skinny stretch.  For women he can create low-waist stretch, medium-waist stretch, high-waist stretch and tailored high waist jeans.

“It can get really collaborative and creative.  Someone might want some complex leather trims and fit requirements, or it might be really minimal, they might just have really long legs,” Olijnyk says in an interview with The Australian.

There is a reason bespoke has been around for decades.  The clothes are classic and sophisticated.  Oscar and Oscar offers tailoring services throughout Australia with their headquarters in Melbourne.  Each piece is highly crafted using traditional methods.  As they note on their website Coco Chanel once said, “The best colour in the whole world is the one that looks best on you.”  Tailoring allows for you to have outfits that suit your body-shape and complexion.

If the traditional isn’t your flavour bespoke can still be useful.  Borrie’s Tailors in Queensland is for the eccentric.  Borrie’s Tailors enjoys experimenting.  Most tailors only use natural fibres such as wool, silk and linen but they make shirts and suits out of lycra, spandex and lurex.  They push the boundaries of colour and patterns by creating bright pink, blue, yellow, paisley and purple garments.

Now you have a head-to-toe tailored outfit, but your opinions aren’t over yet.  Jewellery is another area where you can purchase custom-made pieces.  I’m not talking engagement rings and opal earrings.  House of Riches in Perth allows for the customer to become the designer.  They collaborate with you to put your ideas into reality.  

Made by White ships its designs all over Australia.  They make brooches, necklaces, earrings, bobby pins and buttons from plastic and wood.  Made by White is most famous for their already designed pieces yet they do offer custom made jewellery.  All you have to do is go on their website and fill in the form specifying what you picture the end result to look like. 

All evidence points to the fact that bespoke, tailoring and custom made pieces only manages to enrich your life.  Go on, get creative and let all your clothing dreams become a reality.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Baby got big... and I like it

Big is beautiful!  Three Drawer Down, a seriously wicked and quirky store in Fitzroy, is showing us the way in big products.  There may be no reason to own these products but really, who needs a point when you're this cool.  The best thing to do is scroll down and check out the photos because words seem to only moot these products.  One last thing; don't be fooled by the front of the store, it may not look that spectacular but once you step through those doors you'll never want to leave.

Love Me

Thursday, July 8, 2010

A boot worth an Oscar speech

I FINALLY have a pair of boots that are comfortable, fashionable, timeless, real leather and which I love.  It's an amazing feeling after 21 years of waiting.  Where did I find them?  Well surprisingly it was not in the fine fashionable city of Melbourne, these little stunners were purchased from Hobart, Tasmania.  Every so often that place surprises everybody by actually selling something worthy of our cash.  Check out Sole Solutions if you head to the chilly, hilly state, for the rare gem can be found.  These boots are by Bruno Premi and totally worth the money.  Ok its time for a bit of an 'Oscars' moment; I'd like to thank my parents for buying these boots and realising how much they will enrich my life.  I would also like to give a shout out to my mum and the shop assistant for making me realise how cute these boots were, without which I may never have brought them.  It's true, sometimes your parents do know best!

Love Me.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Mixing it up

Spring is all about mixing the masculine with the feminine.  The easiest way I've found to do this is by buying a pair of army/grunge ankle boots and pairing it with a tutu skirt, flowing dress or anything pastel.

I have to admit I'm not totally sold on this whole idea.  I believe only a hand-full of girls can pull this look off because the attitude is just as important as the styling.  If you are going to attempt this please make sure you wear the clothes not the other way around.  With that said, if you've got the moves then this style is going to make you look sexy and comfortable.

As Jenna Lyons (creative director for J. Crew) told Oprah, if you are a fashion novice then the best thing to do is pair different textures, fabrics and styles.  This trend really does comply and lives up to her fabulous advice.

Love Me.