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happy february 14th!

14 February 2010

{ image source: f a s h i o n t o a s t }

So we all know the fourteenth of every February has been, nationally (read: corporately) deemed Valentine’s Day, and that I, for some unknown reason, am completely, utterly, and inexplicably in love with the above photo of Rumi from Fashion Toast. Candied hearts, handmade valentines, boxed chocolates, and de-thorned bouquets of roses, and all. My obsession with the new color combination of anything taupe and/or mushroom colored with a pastel pink has only intensified with this snapshot.

I’m hardly bitter about being single on Valentine’s Day; I’ve gone my long, seventeen years sans another half (but I do have  a Valentine every year though; four was the magic number of last year’s Valentine’s Day) quite happily. Cue “Single Ladies” whilst dolling up with something resembling a freakum dress – I’m quite ready for this lovely day! Ordering thousand-calorie desserts sprinkled with something pink, dressing up, and wearing bits of pink here and there with a dash of sparkle is excused without a second thought. Of course spending an entire day with a romantic sweetheart is adorable, but is it necessary? Not entirely. In fact, not at all – I would much rather spend it with the girls.

Valentine’s Day is not a reminder of this self-conjured thought of your inability to attract men (or women, whichever sex you choose). It is but a day in the year that so happens to fall on the fourteenth of February, but if we insist on making it significant, then, Valentine’s Day is a reminder of the freedom and independence you have as a self-sufficient woman. All you need is you: you alone hold the key to your aspirations, happiness, and successes. No (wo)man is necessary to feel whole or empowered.

Is it depressing to feel alone, or left out, when all other ladies have little bouquets and kisses awaiting them? Perhaps. It all depends entirely on your perspective. I know one too many girls who loathe Valentine’s Day – and all things associated with it – with their entire being. They mope, gorging themselves with food as they dig out all self-imagined faults and allow themselves to submit to their insecurities. I suppose I can attempt to empathize, yet those of you who follow my Tumblr or actually know me (!) know that I value my independence above all else. I have never harbored any desire to have a boyfriend for that very reason; being single allows for so much more freedom. Being coquettish is allowed! And that, my loves, is quite entertaining in itself!

Thus, for you single ladies out there, embrace your independence. Take advantage of it; wear red and pull out your freakum dress. Take a bit of time to coif the hair and do the makeup – nothing too extravagant, of course. Think to emphasize your best features, whether it be your hair, your eyes, your lips, your figure. Go out on Valentine’s Day à la the Sex and the City girls pre-marriage, and just enjoy yourself.

bisous,

La C.

P.S.: I am currently in love with Lorraine of The Current Custom; you ladies better watch her “Anti-Valentine’s Day” video. It is unbelievably hilarious. Take those tips to heart, mes chéries.

r.i.p., alexander mcqueen.

11 February 2010

{ tribute painting |  d a n n y  r o b e r t s  }

It’s rather unsettling to be here writing this; a part of me harbors this notion that no, it can’t quite possibly be real, that the one and only Alexander McQueen is  d e a d . Suicide was the stipulation for the death of this iconic British designer.

Harsh, isn’t it? Those words. The finality of the words death and dead that we all sought to avoid, and herein we try to appease our souls with less confined descriptions: rest in peace, left the Earth, escaped worldliness, etc. Our minds, with the knowledge of our own fragility, grow scared at every reminder of our mortality. It’s admittedly pathetic, but nonetheless human.

I know I’m perhaps the last to dedicate a tribute of sorts to Alexander McQueen; what exactly do I write about him that could put to justice to the amount of beauty and artistic genius he gave to the world? Alexandra Schulman at Vogue had said, “Lee McQueen influenced a whole generation of designers. His brilliant imagination knew no bounds as he conjured up collection after collection of extraordinary designs.”

It was exactly that – his boundless imagination and lack of inhibition – that brought him to where he was today. I do believe that my reverence for him – and countless others’ admiration for the designer – was for that very quality. Few people possess the ability to do so without recoiling from insecurities or fear of what others would think. On a smaller scale, we shelter a part of ourselves from the brutality of the world, so save our egos and creative bits should our peers scoff at what isn’t in the norm. To be able to forgo any and all insecurities, self- and societal restraints, is a feat to be praised for, especially when displayed for the entire world to see, and ultimately, judge. That, in itself, should be commended.

Thus the news of Alexander McQueen’s suicide is especially devastating for any who have heard of the iconic name; in my mind he (and the likes of Karl Lagerfeld) were near immortal: physically as the last man standing, and intangibly as in their influence upon the exclusive fashion world. Yet at the same time it was strangely forsee-able. I obviously have no personal connections to the man, but in seeing his designs, brash and impulsive (writing “I am a c*nt into the sleeve of Prince Charles’ suit!), there was an undercurrent of pessimism in his romantically, arch-romantic collections – elements that perhaps reflected his inner self. His collections were always beautiful in a nonconventional fashion, yet dark.

Choosing the perfect image to accompany my tribute post to Alexander McQueen stopped upon seeing Danny Robert’s painting. The colors, the brushstrokes, even the face itself reminded me of Van Gogh: the same pessimism – that incomprehensible, otherworldly sadness – and creative ingeniousness captured brilliantly in Robert’s tribute represented the essence this news, and the emotions, almost all too perfectly. The contemplativeness of the eyes that led to the mind.

We all cringe at the headlines everywhere: ALEXANDER MCQUEEN, AGE 40 DEAD. Bolded, in the rather unfeeling Times New Roman font – all the more imprinting the finality of his leave. It’s a funny thing, how we think death means the end of all good that came from that being, when in fact, it only immortalizes him.

His soul, his influence, his impact – that, mes chéries, lives on.

bisous,

La C.

sexy little ski bunny.

10 February 2010

Iselin Steiro | Vogue Paris, November 2006 | {image source: s t a r b u c k s & j a n e a u s t e n }

School has been closed for two consecutive days on account of the inclement weather – all for good reason. The sky is a rather eerie shade of dove grey, and the snow outside has piled to an ominous amount that is still growing. At this rate of snowfall I think I may need to invest in a pair of thigh-high boots to shield my legs from all that white stuff – it is a perfectly viable excuse to own a pair, non? It is completely and utterly practical for me to own one, particularly the one of the Gucci runway variety from a season back.

Okay. So perhaps I don’t exactly go trudging through the snow, shovel in hand (this is when having a brother is actually convenient). I much prefer resuming my niche on the couch – browse through my favorite blogs and save numerous photos into my massive inspiration folder whilst watching CSI marathons. Add in a bit of baking experimentation and occasional naps, and snow days are quite productive.

I’ll frolic about in the snow on occasion. But my inclination towards cold, wet, white things are limited. My few experiences skiing has been far from fabulous. Memories of resembling a black bundle of pudginess that did little to shield me from the high winds of the bunny hill contributed to my aversiveness towards both the sport and the white fluff.

Now it would all be a different story had I seen Iselin Steiro’s editorial for Vogue Paris. She’s quite the sexy little ski bunny, clad in beautiful fur jackets (of which I want), little jackets, fitted pants, and chic boots. I’m quite in love with it all. Perhaps it is the stylistic contrast of the black clothing and white snow that makes it all the more intense; the blasé attitude of the model against such severe an antithesis of color (or lack of) was truly well done. The clothing was showcased at its best, and the model’s beauty accentuated.

Impeccably done. The purpose of this long-winded ramble? It was simply to announce to the world that this editorial will serve as my inspiration for my next attempt at skiing. Or just trudging about in the snow.

bisous,

La C.

maintenant | no. 005

4 February 2010

Simply a list of my current obsessions, cravings, inspirations, and the like.

{ image source: t u m b l  r }

vampire diaries | hush, hush | nylon magazine | nina dobrev as elana gilbert | krma jade leather jacket in black {currently saving up for this $650 beauty, it’s quite unique and incredibly sexy!} | smudged yet winged black liner + loads of mascara + peachy-coral blusher + nude-pink lipstick | formspring {i get the craziest things on it!} | metrochic nail lacquer | “in my head” by jason derulo | flickr! | belle.chantelle | le cheap c’est chic | le blog de betty | la revue de kenza | the f blog | phosphene fashion | frieda rose! | gala darling | jessica stroup {from 90210} | blogging, without a doubt, for pop magazine | my vintage leather jacket | a spoonful of nutella right out of the jar | getting invites to fashion events: shows, parties, openings, etc. {but NOT being able to go is the perhaps the worst feeling in the world} | american apparel | organizing and putting together my portfolio | wearing my hair au naturel: teased, then pinned half up-half down | pixi2woo | sitting in bed, reading, and browsing the beautiful blogosphere on the lazy days.

bisous,

La C.

cirque du soleil | marc jacobs ss 2010

2 February 2010

{Do listen to Christina Aguilera’s “(Welcome) Enter the Circus” in the background; it is quite instrumental (no pun intended) in enhancing your reading of this particular post.}

{ marc jacobs, spring/summer 2010 }

{click; the music is quite instrumental (no pun intended) to the reading of this particular post: Enter the Circus | Christina Aguilera }

I’ve never been a massive fan of Marc Jacobs shows. Or even a fan at all, however blasphemous the very statement must be to the high-and-mighty fashion world and blogosphere we all adoringly look up to. Bi-annually, during Fashion Week, I would skim over his runway presentations. Quirky and quaint were never quite the adjectives I were attracted to, quite honestly. The pieces, individually, were quite beautiful and humorous – blouse or short would seamlessly integrate itself into any wardrobe, a new bag making a lovely spring statement piece hung across the shoulders or clutched in the hand.

Yet the show, however big it was in the industry, never quite cut it for me. I’m a fan of Marc Jacobs himself, and his designs. But the  s t y l i n g  of the shows never showcased the clothes to their true potential until seen individually.

Enter Fashion Week’s runway shows of  spring/summer 2010.

It literally took my breath away.

Which meant that the swooning was inevitable, as was the I die.

Marc Jacobs truly has mastered the art of humor and light-heartedness in his designs. Airy, effortless, yet all the while structured. The ruffles, instead of the archetypal fluffy romantic bits, were architectural. Sorbet washes of colors made every piece absolutely sweet and delicieux, reminiscent of the circuses of years passed: classic clowns, flying trapezes, acrobatic dancers, cotton candy, and all. Still, there is a subtle hint at modernism despite the baroque ruffles; metallic bags and shimmering fabrics barely touched upon the futuristic references of just a few seasons ago. The collection was indeed a fantastic, if not brilliant, juxtaposition of the Old World and the new, capturing the very essence, the very magic, and the very fascination of le cirque.

Now onto the presentation itself: absolutely, undoubtedly impeccable.

The makeup artist could have gone with the traditional clown/circus makeup: white face paint, red, heart-shaped lips, lined eyes. It would have worked in conjunction to the collection and Marc’s usual frivolity in his shows. Yet here the makeup was taken a step further: clown paint gone sophisticated. Dramatic winged liner, shimmer (with green duochrome) on the lid and brow-bone, matte ruby lips, and powdered faces created a gorgeous effect. When completed with the hair, a tight chignon reminiscent of my ballerina days, the overall effect was clean, sophisticated, and just beautiful. The styling of the pieces into a complete runway look was smooth; none of the pieces jarred with each other, nor with the shoes and accessories given. It possessed the seamless quality of the Louis Vuitton presentations, upgrading its runway show from quirky to refined and whimsical.

Five stars, mes chéris, with a cherry on top.

bisous,

La C.

oh là là, that would be my fancy new nokia n97 ringing.

31 January 2010

Did I ever mention that I love receiving packages, big or small, in the post?

Meet my lovely new friend Juley all the way WOM World/Nokia (it’s quite an advanced technological place, so I’ve heard). She’s staying with me for two weeks time; doesn’t she look lovely sitting atop my petite edition of The Fashion Book? The Nokia N97 mini‘s are always the prettiest of the lot.

I will admit that I’m quite inept when it comes to technology; blogging is already an impressive feat, I make bangin’ PowerPoint presentations (if I may say so myself!), and I couldn’t quite possibly live without my laptop/dodgy mobile/iPod. Anything beyond the basics still remains a mystery to me. Regardless of my dependency on the three aforementioned technological tools, when it comes down to it, I would much prefer my pen and stationary for a bit of classic snail mail. It’s far more romantic.

Yet when Shira, over at WOM World/Nokia e-mailed me with the opportunity to try out the Nokia N97 Mini – a mobile device that “combines both style and technology” – I couldn’t exactly resist. I have quite the penchant for pretty little doodads and devices, all of which have their respective leopard-print cases. Even greater than the offer itself was the the fact that I was even selected to try this $692 (£429) phone. Amongst the likes of BryanBoy (!!!), Christian of After-a-Fashion, and Bagaholic Boy! Come again? ‘Twas an honor indeed. I still cannot get over it.

Anyhoo. Shall we all ooh and ahh, maintenant? All together now, as if we were choirgirls and boys:

She’s quite the beauty, non?

I do love anything clean, and chic. The casing is a lovely shade of an unusual but sophisticated chocolate, adding just the perfect hint of color sans the ubiquitous pink/black/blue/red  e v e r y o n e  has. It fits rather comfortably in the palm; the phone is itself is made of a sleek metal finish that, once again, adds a touch of unconventional. Juley is by no means mini however; the name is a tad misleading – it makes me wonder as to how big her older sister was! Regardless, it isn’t detrimental. I personally prefer something substantial: as much as petite is adorable, anything too small and too light just feels like cheap plastic (a.k.a. my current phone).

I love that there is an option of a touch screen or QWERTY key board; the side slide with a tilted screen is one of my favorite features. The home screen is easily personalized whichever widgets, themes, icons, and shortcuts you use the most. Checking Facebook, emailing, and keeping track of to-do lists via the calender is convenient and easily managed. Je l’adore.

It’s a bit hard to get used to, navigating yourself throughout all the phone’s features. The camera’s picture quality is decent for a phone, but I am still unsure of how to use it without having to go through Facebook first (disclaimer: I am incompetent in regards to all technology). Surfing the web is far easier on Blackberries, in my honest opinion.

The final verdict on Juley? Lovely to bring about, lovely for basics, aesthetically pleasing, pleasing to the touch, and fun to play around with. I do quite like the color and shape of the mobile. It is 100% recylable – which is another plus. I can’t say I’m in love with it all, since I’ve only had it for a few days now and I’ve never been one too fond of technological devices of sorts. But the oohs and aahs are guaranteed when you her out of your handbag, ringing whilst sipping coffee at the café around the corner.

bisous,

La C.

P.S.: You like? Read more about the Nokia N97 mini here.

t-post, the world’s first w e a r a b l e magazine.

26 January 2010

It is exactly what it is: a t-shirt magazine. The equation is quite simple, easily perceptible by even one (as I look peevishly away, whistling nonchalantly) so inept at mathematics.

offbeat news + graphic t-shirt = t-post

I told you it was easy as pie!

Months ago I was approached by T-post, asking if I would like a tee-shirt. I was hesitant; graphic tee-shirts are hardly my cup of tea (save those emblazened the British flag or the Wildfox varieties of which I tuck into bandage skirts). Too ubiquitous, too nostalgic of junior high and high school, too casual for my personal preference. Yet even so it struck my curiosity – what exactly was  T-post, the Swedish company that claimed to be “the world’s first wearable magazine?”

I fell am in love with the entire brand’s concept: every six weeks, subscribers receive a new t-shirt in the post. News story on the inside, the artist’s interpretation on the front. A concept so seemingly simple but unbelievably innovative, not to mention unheard of until now. Genius, I say; it is much like a surprise in the mail. A new gift every. Six. Weeks. It’s a bit like Christmas Day, tearing open the little packages from Sweden to be amazed by a new piece of artwork and a news piece.

Every t-post t-shirt is a conversation starter.

This would be my limited edition tee (creates less environmental waste, dears!) illustrated by the brilliant Esra Røise; not something I would typically pick up in the store, but a beautiful work and quite the conversation starter nonetheless. T-Post works with a different designer for each upcoming issue (so to speak), keeping things edgy with artists both stylistically and personally unique. Each artist has his/her own column on the tee by the news column: T-post informs and publicizes the independent artist. I’ve always harbored admiration for companies that seek out those of particular – but unheard of – talent, for it is these seekers (if you will) that keep the generation of creativity fresh, and  a l i v e .

I adore their concept. I admire their philosophy. It’s all quite romantic, really.

Tees have always been what I wore to sweat in for dance or physical education classes. Things I wore to sleep. Things I bought as souvenirs from museums or travels. Things boys wore because they were lazy. Things I wore when I didn’t feel bothered with taking a blouse off its wooden hanger from my closet.

Yet T-Post brings a different perspective – as they do with all other components of their work, from the artwork to the story – on the plain ol’ tee most never gave a second thought about. These are the shirts that inspire conversation. The shirts that promote change. That instigate movement. That provoke thought. All the while being a work of art and a piece of fashion.

T-Post proves that clothing, or fashion, has the ability to extend past the stereotypical materialists clad in Louboutins and Chanel head-to-toe. Its message reaches the rest of the population, speaking not just of the writer, the designer, the artist, nor yourself, but of the world. Fashion isn’t just superficiality, and T-Post exemplifies that. Design catches the eye. It pushes for a second glance, a second thought, and the rest is up to you.

“It’s a communication experiment that typically begins with a compliment like ‘Nice t-shirt,’ and continues with the wearer explaining the interesting news story behind the design.”

bisous,

La C.