Je Suis Belle, bien sûr!

You may have already heard of Je Suis Belle's spring 2010 collection from eerily quick on the uptake blogs such as Style Bubble and Kingdom of Style. I generally avoid repeating content but for this case I'll make an exception, as the relatively unknown brand deserves more press and they were kind enough to send an info package filled with lovely high-res images directly to my inbox. I love being able to see the details for a change! I'm rather bored of using tiny style.com photos over and over again.

Je Suis Belle is the brainchild of Dalma and Tibor, who met in university in Budapest and have since been on a mission to create clothes for the self-confident woman, who seeks gracefulness, playfulness, and appreciates a sense of individuality. The spring 2010 collection was inspired by the works of contemporary Hungarian artist Attila Szűcs, whose paintings were printed all over the body, on lightly draped dresses and blouses. Straw hats were sliced in half, creating a casual visor, perfect for picnics in the park or lounging on the beach. I was a bit confused by the shoes. Were these clobbered together backstage before the show or are they intentionally made so haphazardly unfinished? Sure looks like an easy DIY...

I set runway shots side by side with images of Szűcs' paintings below. I enjoyed browsing through the online gallery, definitely worth a look-see! I love the mysterious hazy images. Especially the ones depicting the curious electrical engineer Nikola Tesla. Yes. Oh, and I just wanted to add, the painting names were taken directly from the website. I'm not sure if the typos are intentional or not...


Dog with christmas-tree lightnings

Two standing figures

Figure with pinkish blindspot

Tesla in a desert

Restlers on singularity

Photographer: Hendrik Ballhausen, painting captures from szucsattila.hu


“Always watch where you are going. Otherwise, you may step on a piece of the Forest that was left out by mistake.”

Prada's fall 09 lookbook has sold me on the collection. Seriously, I loved gazing at every page of it. It's very surrealist, sometimes haunting and sometimes tongue-in-cheek. Maybe even making references to the occult? I've been seeing so many uninspired lookbooks lately that this rather random photoshop job suddenly seems so appealing. The cave-man dress paired with a wolf's head is a nice touch, but my favourite is probably the men's runway shot with a full moon shining overhead.

See the entire lookbook here.


The Shower Curtain Coat

Hey guys! The scuba dress post seemed to be very popular! I was thinking Miu Miu myself, but I can also see the Preen and Michael Kors in it, as some readers suggested. Actually, maybe even a bit of PHI resort 2010. My mum said it looked like Thor Heyerdahl 1979. Who is he you ask? I was wondering the same thing. So I googled him:

Norwegian ethnologist and adventurer who organized and led the famous Kon-Tiki (1947) and Ra (1969–70) transoceanic scientific expeditions. Both expeditions were intended to prove the possibility of ancient transoceanic contacts between distant civilizations and cultures. For the most part, Heyerdahl’s theories have not been accepted by anthropologists.

Haha mother, haha. Anyways, yesterday I went on yet another thrift excursion and picked up this very 80s wool coat. My boy said it looked like a shower curtain. Haha Kevin, haha. If I paired it with a bright orange body-con dress and geometric make-up I could pass for a Liquid Sky extra. What a strange but stylish movie. I'll see if I can screen cap it for the blog. Alas I have no such dress, but I am warming up to the idea of orange as a wardrobe color some more.

I've paired the coat with a blouse made by my grandmother, H&M skirt and booties from The Shoe Warehouse.

I also picked up another sheer dress and two purses. More on those when I get around to taking photos of them!


The Scuba Dress

Finally, my DIY project is finished! Except this wasn't really DIY, since my grandmother helped me with it. I forgot to take the "before" pictures. Sorry guys! The original thrifted dress had sheer black panels where I placed the blue. It was lovely, but far too showy for my personal tastes, and I really did want to wear it out. I originally planned on replacing the sheer with a stretchy nude fabric, but couldn't find any that didn't wash out my skin. Then I came across this four-way stretch electric blue fabric, and fell in love. I instantly thought of the colors and fit of scuba diving costumes. And thus the scuba dress was born. Sewing stretch fabrics is a nightmare though, I tell ya. My grandmother says she just aged 10 years sewing and fitting and re-sewing and re-fitting, and so on. The blue fabric was stretch but much more stiff than the original thin mesh.

Fashion Mag Goes 3 Dimensional

"This month, Dazed & Confused leaps out of your hands, taking fashion into the third dimension with a specially commissioned shoot of Marios Schwab’s 3D-inspired collection. Featuring 3D photography by Terry Tsiolis and styling by Nicola Formichetti, plus a specially inserted pair of 3D glasses and exclusive interview with the innovative designer."
3D fashion! I must thank the editors of Dazed for giving us a bit of peek into what one might have experienced at the Fall 2009 Marios Schwab show. I loved the anaglyphic prints. 3D glasses or no 3D glasses, they are still some crazily cool prints!


It Speaks to Me

This morning I received a hello from Marisa, a part of the team behind Speech, a hand-made jewelry line conceived in the place they call the "dungeon" in Queen West. She seemed pretty sure that I would like some of the pieces. Why yes, I did! The collection was inspired by the beauty of everyday hardware, such as an old mirror frame nail, the starting point for the collection. The jewelry is rendered in gold or oxidized sterling silver, elevating the mundane to form a sort of Dadaist-inspired art. To me, it's all about the gritty rock and roll. The large nail is probably my favourite. Check out their blog for a bit of bad-ass inspiration (Kasabian meets Greasers meets Galliano's tongue...), and also check out Marisa's blog C'est Girl So Chic. She's a former Teen Vogue intern! Neato.

Images via ssspeech.com


Couture Fall 2009

"Haute Couture should be fun, foolish and almost unwearable."

- Christian Lacroix

Below are my favorite picks from the Haute Couture fall 2009 shows. In particular, I am eyeing Valentino's lace shorts, Stephane Rolland's long and loose blazers, Gaultier's future/classics woman, and Josep Font's standout new variation of the statement-shoulder trend. I am also eagerly awaiting high-res photos of On Aura Tout Vu's tree branch dress.

Images from via thefashionspot.com


Wrap Me Up

Images via Coutorture

As soon as I laid eyes on the Opening Ceremony for Pendleton collection I fell in love. The 100-year old heritage brand lent it's iconic Navajo prints for a celebratory capsule collection. This is probably my favourite brand collaboration as of yet. The pieces are extremely modern, with on-trend peplum and cape silhouettes, yet the stunning traditional prints are steeped in rich history. The colors are simply amazing. I can't stop staring. Below is an excerpt from the Pendleton website.

In 1863, traveling down the Atlantic seaboard, crossing the Isthmus of Panama on a burro, and sailing up the Pacific coast was a grueling four-month passage. Yet for Thomas Kay, a young English weaver, it was a dream come true. An old hand at sea voyages, he had already crossed the Atlantic years earlier to work at east coast textile mills. With skills honed, he was now headed to an area with ideal conditions for raising sheep and producing wool. A place with moderate weather and plentiful water - America's newest state, Oregon.

Kay helped organize Oregon's second woolen mill in Brownsville, where he oversaw the weaving operation. Soon he was made a superintendent of the company. In 1889, Thomas Kay opened his own mill in Salem, Oregon. From these humble beginnings rose a dyed-in-the-wool American success story...

...The production of Indian blankets resumed as the Bishops applied intuitive business concepts for quality products and distinctive styling. A study of the color and design preferences of local and Southwest Native Americans resulted in vivid colors and intricate patterns. Trade expanded from the Nez Perce nation near Pendleton to the Navajo, Hopi and Zuni nations. These Pendleton blankets were used as basic wearing apparel and as a standard of value for trading and credit among Native Americans. The blankets also became prized for ceremonial use. Under the direction of the Bishop family, Pendleton expanded into other areas of woolen manufacturing. In 1912, the addition of a weaving mill in Washougal, Washington, broadened its capability for fabric variety, including suitings.

As I was browsing the Coutorture website for the above collage, I noticed a commenter who claimed that Opening Ceremony was ripping off designer Lindsey Thornburg. Having never heard of her, I did a quick search and discovered more wonderfully cozy wool capes! For her most recent collection, Lindsey journeyed to Machu Picchu where she was very inspired by the Highlanders' boldly colored attire. I can relate to her love of their traditional costumes, as I have myself admired them (sadly only in books) many times. I'm not really bothered by who copied who, but I would like to snag a similar item myself. My only hope would be to a) miraculously discover something at a thrift store or b) wait for a highstreet store like Zara to pick up on the trend. Actually, I have seen similar blankets around, but they are far too rough and itchy to wear as clothing...

Images via LindseyThornburg.com

After having been inspired by these two amazing collections, I decided to wrap myself in a few cozy pieces of my own. Not quite the same, but it's a start. Luckily, we're having a very chilly and rainy 14 degree day today. I'm wearing a thrifted Ralph Lauren Polo cardigan, thrifted grey wool cape, Zara jeans, and a Romanian scarf handed down from my mum. I should have shown the scarf a bit more in the photo. It's much larger than it looks and the beautiful print is very much in the theme of today's post.