Avant-garde and Kitsch..

I love the 60's with its mixture of Avant-garde and Kitsch..

Sychelles.. on the wire..

Searching for S/S 07 Marni Platform shoes on Ebay has been really tough especially because when they rarely appear in some listings they are never of my size (IT38).. However just when I decided to give up searching for them, I ended up falling in love with Sychelles' On The Wire Green Suede platform, which in a way resemble Marni's platform style!!

Seychelles Footwear is a Los Angeles-based shoe company "for the girl trailblazing her way through life". They search through high and low for inspiration, taking cues from old Hollywood glamour and the streets of Silverlake, to runways and city avenues beyond convention. They try to deliver a mix of new ideas taken from un-ordinary places to help girls emphasis their individual styles.
During Christmas holidays I am going to be in the USA so I hope I can get a pair of these edgy platforms!!



In addition to be subject of his directorial debut, "Paris-Moscou" was chosen by Karl Lagerfeld as the theme for his semiannual collection designed to show off the skills of the French embroiderers, milliners, goldsmiths, and shoemakers Chanel's house owns. 
In Théâtre le Ranelagh, the fashion show opened with a silent black-and-white cine-skit on Coco's flirtation with Russian-Parisian émigré society in the 1910's and 1920's.

“Today, people are ready for silent movies again, as they spend time — hours, I would say — looking at text messages and e-mails, I always loved silent movies” Karl Lagerfeld. 

According to various sources, the designer gathered some familiar members of his entourage, including model Brad Koenig and his bodyguard/private secretary Sébastien Jondeau (mustachioed and surly as a Russian nightclub owner), for the cast, along with model Edita Vilkeviciute, her gamine allure, jutting chin and ramrod posture creating a beguiling portrayal of the young Coco from 1913, when the legendary designer first set up shop. As reported in WWD Nov. 17, Tallulah Ormsby-Gore plays a Chanel model who has to sell her real-life mother, Lady Amanda Harlech, a hat in the film. Even the workers in the Chanel atelier got to play parts as workers in the fashion house. I cannot take extras,” Lagerfeld notes. “They don’t know how to touch the clothes.”

The second part of the film takes place in 1923, when Chanel was already established, and is interspersed with newsreel images from the First World War. The plot, conveyed with title cards, involves an amusing cast of characters, many tied to Russia, including Chanel’s lover the Grand Duke Dmitri Pavlovich, from whom she borrowed the pea jacket and pelisse, giving them a feminine touch. It’s a funny movie, unpretentious, says Lagerfeld. “Chanel was a charming woman, at liberty to seduce men. Everybody this year has decided to make a movie about Chanel, and you know their historical worth is not always too exact.”

“I had every image in my head” the designer says, as for the collection, he says it will be “constructed,” incorporating elements of imperial Russia and Russian folklore. As you can observe in the images below. 

p.s. I wonder if those golden tights would work for New Year's Eve celebration... 


Remembering Last Summer

Two months ago, when I came across the news of an exhibition to celebrate the 20th Anniversary of Maison Martin Margiela in Province of Antwerp Fashion Museum I immediately remember how great it was to work in Maison Margiela's showroom last summer.

Before having this great opportunity I did not have much knowledge about Martin Margiela and his work, but by working first-hand with his clothes, shoes and accessories I felt in love with his minimal, deconstructed, witty aesthetics. 

Maison Martin Margiela is especially known for its deconstructivist approach and its use of second-hand materials or materials with low commercial value. Its entire oeuvre is characterized by an exceptional combination of classic tailoring and conceptual thinking. Margiela shows the inside of a clothing item, exposes its construction and focuses on that which fashion anxiously tries to conceal. 

Unravelling the grammar of clothing, Maison Martin Margiela reveals the strategies of the fashion system as he constructs something radically new. The working method produces an analysis of the system that underlies fashion and is followed through in the many varied aspects of the fashion house.

  I admire how Margiela emphatically decided to let his fashion speak for itself.  All interviews are consistently given in the name of the Maison as a whole and no photographs of the designer are distributed – a sharp reaction against the star status that dominated the fashion scene of the 1980s and 1990s. Since the 1980s, the Japanese avantgardists, with Rei Kawakubo (Comme des Garcons), had turned the fashion scene upside-down with their eccentric and ground-breaking designs. Martin Margiela and the Antwerp Six had carried on the work, revolting against the luxurious fashion world with garments of oversized proportions such as long arms, and with linings, seams and hems on the outside.  

According to the Province of Antwerp Fashion Museum website 'MAISON MARTIN MARGIELA (20)The exhibition' is not a classic retrospective exhibition, but looks more deeply into the different themes and concepts that Maison Martin Margiela has explored during the 20 years of its various collections, fashion shows, presentations and events worldwide, design of its shops and offices, exceptional house style and communications policy. 

Unfortunately I will not make it to exhibition but whoever is in Europe and is interested in fashion should definitely owe a visit.  


Marc Jacobs like Stephen Sprouse..

Appropriation is a contemporary art practice that have always intrigued me. As a consequence I have always been fascinated by how Marc Jacobs  brought this practice into fashion. By reading Marc Jacobs' interview by Glenn O'Brien you can see how he appropriated art and brought it into the "superficial fashion world". 
Back in 2001...

MJ: I was looking to rent an apartment when I first got here. Charlotte Gainsbourg had just had a baby and she was sitting in the bedroom breastfeeding, and I was looking at her apartment, and, in the corner, she had a trunk, a Louis Vuitton trunk that had been painted black. But a lot of the black had come off. It was her dad's-that being Serge-and he had painted it black. And for some reason, that triggered me thinking about my favorite work of art ever, which is L.H.O.O.Q. by [Marcel] Duchamp. And I thought, This Vuitton monogram is sort of the Mona Lisa of this company.

GO: Yeah.

MJ: And what I wanted to do, in the same way Serge had done, was deface it. The same way that Duchamp had done with L.H.O.O.Q., by putting this moustache on [the Mona Lisa] and making it something hipper, a little bit anarchic, and just cooler. And by defacing something, making it new again. And so I had this idea of asking Stephen [Sprouse] to come here and do graffiti on top of it.

MJ: And I was so pleased with that particular collaboration, being such a big fan of Stephen's. I always adored him as an artist and as a fashion designer. I got to become friendly with him through the time we spent together here in the office in Paris. I just felt like it all made sense. My name isn't Louis Vuitton. This company has this legendary status. It's a part of what I romanticized about life in Paris as a kid who studied fashion. I looked up to these people who I'd never met. Without any kind of real ego on my part, I just thought, I'm going to approach the people I admire and see if they want to do something together. And that's how it all started.

By combining, the par excellence street-art,  graffiti and the par excellence luxurious LV monogram, MJ brought the art from the street to the catwalk.  MJ recontextualized them in the same way as andy Warhol did by showing Brillo Boxes at New York's Stable Gallery on April 1964. Unlike Marcel Duchamp who tended to find the beauty in the banal. Warhol and MJ found the banal as beautiful, elevating, thus, it from a spartan to a luxurious good.

MJ: I don't know the history of art, but I got over intimidation from the art world when I realized that I was allowed to feel whatever I want and like whatever I want. That's what I always laugh about with Richard [Prince]. When someone says, "Why did you do that?" and you say, "Because I liked it"-I think that's really enough. And when I think about what came before Pop art, I understand that maybe these people were spilling their guts onto canvas through use of abstract strokes and colors and techniques, but that's not really moving to me. There's something about what I see every day, and the banal-I mean, what Pop was. I can kind of worship that, and I can look at that and smile, or I can just say I like it and that's fine. That's all I really want. I don't want to work that hard, you know? I like what Pop did, and I think that we live in a world where, on every level, people like what Pop did.

Then again , next month, to show his admiration for the late designer and artist,  Marc Jacobs  is using the hit 2001 collaboration with Sprouse for a new, limited edition collection of accessories and ready-to-wear. (Jacobs, photographed by Terry Richardson is posing in the nude painted in Sprouse’s graffiti for Harper’s Bazaar’s January issue).

This comes at a time of renewed buzz about Sprouse, whose graffiti prints and Day-Glo clothes became a defining aesthetic of the early Eighties. It coincides with a retrospective — called “Rock on Mars” — at Deitch Projects’ 18 Wooster Street gallery from January 8th to February 28th, and “The Stephen Sprouse Book”, by Roger Padilha and Mauricio Padilha, due out from Rizzoli New York on Feb. 1.

The impetus for the new line came when Deitch approached Jacobs and Vuitton about doing something related to the retrospective. “I proposed putting together a Vuitton version of the Pop Shop, which was Keith Haring’s concept…not reissuing products that we had done with Stephen, but doing things that were similar or new”, Jacobs said.

Sprouse died in 2004, and the new tribute pieces, which hit Vuitton boutiques worldwide January  9th, pick up almost seamlessly where the 2001 collaboration left off. Jacobs took two iconic Sprouse motifs — the graffiti and the rose — and interpreted them in Day-Glo shades of pink, green and orange over the Monogram print. The motifs are featured on Vuitton’s Keepall, Speedy and Neverfull bag styles, as well as basketball sneaker boots, pumps, sunglasses, headbands and wristbands, and small leather goods like wallets and coin purses. The collection includes a mackintosh raincoat with a graffiti and monogram lining, graffiti leggings and a long-sleeve neon minidress featuring the rose design.

I tried to take what Stephen had done at Vuitton and then kind of flip it in my head, and make it Vuitton’s work for Stephen, not Stephen’s work for Vuitton”, Jacobs said. “I just felt it was a funny way to play with it, to pretend to be Sprouse for a bit, and use the work that he did, and then bring it back to the work that he did before I collaborated with him”.“For me, this monogram graffiti was the first milestone of our permanent reinvention of our history,” said Vuitton president and chief executive officer Yves Carcelle.

“It almost becomes a classic, like a Chanel jacket, or a smoking”, he said. “It’s this idea of a head-to-toe look in this brash, neon, rock ’n’ roll, edgy, street-informed style. Sprouse really best personified it”.

The thing that excited us the most is that somebody who disappeared years ago is going to be the center of life worldwide thanks to that for the next few months”, Carcelle said. “We really want to celebrate a friend”.

Coco Chanel defines the art of the designers as “l’art de capter l’air du temps”. Fashion appears to be incapable of its traditional task toward time: it seems unable to erase history as difference, unable to leave behind in the perfection of the Now. Fashion as the ephemeral is the quintessential momentum of modernity. The ancient and the modern, the eternal and the ephemeral are no longer antithetical but mutually affect each other. ( Fashion Zeitgeist: Trends and Cycles in the Fashion System)


How to Start a Blog

Beginning something new is always thrilling and nerve-wracking at the same time, you want to make a good impression, be original as well as showing your true self. Truth is that when you meet people in real life you can always count on your body language, the way you present yourself, in a blog I think it is much harder because everything you can possibly write will always be mediated by the reader interpretation of what you say. They will never know the intonation you want them to read your posts with, sarcasm, joy, wit, etc.

I have created this blog for a few months now, but I have never posted anything on it.. the reasons are various but I guess the main one is that I did want to start with something smart/interesting/new/arty.. well I still have not found it however I decided to begin writing and see where this goes.

If you type in Google search browser "How To Start A Blog" various links are going to suggest ideas on how to make you rich and popular by writing a blog, well right now this is not where I am heading to. My intent is to assemble my ideas, keep tracks of my discoveries and force myself to keep me update with what is happening in the fashion/art/cinema world.

I am not sure if this is the best way of starting a blog but well, now it is done and I can move on to thinking a serious post inherent to my objective.