Saturday, April 30, 2011

Christian Dada, F/W 11/12

The F/W 11/12 collection from Japanese label Christian Dada (found via F'ing Young!, and not to be confused with some sort of religious/political art theory) definitely gets the thumbs up from me for using one of my favorite songs (Sigur Rós' 'Popplagið') in its runway presentation at Tokyo Fashion Week. I read a review on this debut offering from designer Masanori Morikawa that said "he is trying to be McQueen or Galliano in an incomplete way", based on those twig and spike headpieces (created by Kunio Kohzaki). And sure, I can see some similarities to McQueen if I look (I have no knowledge of anything Galliano), such as that gorgeous hoop dress having a similar shape to the silver ball encrusted McQueen one worn by Björk, or that springtime dress having a (less) similiar shape to that gorgeous McQueen dress worn by Carrie Bradshaw, or those brocade-ish dresses having a(n even less) similiar shape to...other dresses. But, regardless of Masanori's named or unnamed sources of inspiration, I still think that these pieces are lovely, and that the potential greatness of future collections from this designer is rather exciting.

(Lookbook photos via F'ing Young!)

Friday, April 29, 2011


So why did y'all let me go on about how basically draping has become ho-hum and commonplace when I hadn't yet heard of NYC-based label Verlaine (found via NJAL)? And New York, how can I quit you, when all my new and old favorite labels are coincidentally all based in Manhattan and/or Brooklyn? Sigh. Let's just say that, while I don't give two hoots about the big event happening across the pond (though I did hope the rumour of a vintage Alexander McQueen was based on fact), if I were to choose the attire of a modern-day princess, I would want her wardrobe to consist of as many Verlaine pieces as possible. For, first of all, I would rather see these pieces plastered all over the Internets, magazine covers, and front pages than that blue dress (you know the one). And, the hand-dying, loose weaving, and relaxed draping used in the Verlaine collections, I think, would lend themselves to a much more beautiful process of aging than what monarchism has gone through for the last millenium or so. Or something. Anyway, those fantastic colours (which caught my eye before the draping) in the S/S 11 collection (above) are the result of overdying brushed cotton plaids and other natural fibers such as silk with Japanese shibori techniques (though I admit I don't know what that means), which sounds like a rather romantic (and brilliant) process to me. But even when there is no colour in the A/W Verlaine pieces (below)? Sigh.

In case you're interested, a few Verlaine pieces are available at the incredible San Francisco-based online shop Acrimony, as well as NYC-based Kirna Zabete in NYC, Blake in Chicago, DNA in Saudi Arabia, and Vanitas Stores in Shanghai and Taipei). While some of the prices aren't as high as I would've guessed, my favorite pieces are, of course, the most expensive ones (the Driftnet Circle Skirt and the Linen Biker Vest). Oh, and the Verlaine creative team is currently working on the S/S 12 collection, which will  be presented at NYFW in September. I did just notice a cheap flight into Newark around that time...

Thursday, April 28, 2011


It's a gloomy day, my new 30-something-year-old couch just ripped, and, for the first time in eight years, I don't want to go to my appointment to get my roots touched up (though this may have something to do with the fact that I still haven't mastered walking again). However, the day is not yet lost, as I found what may be my most favorite dress of the year. I was just thinking while scouring the Internets this morning that, about a year or two ago, draping in a finished piece of clothing was (or at least seemed to be) more of a rare occurrence, practiced mainly by unknown or emerging designers, along with a few Eastern designers without English websites. But nowadays, there's draped stuff all over the Internets and, likely, on dress forms all over the world. Not that this is a bad thing, of course, it's just that a technique that used to catch my eye for being unique has become much more commonplace. At least on the sites I frequent, at any rate. And so I think I was more than ready to see this gorgeous dress at the end of my Internet travels, as there are enough details in this piece to make it a draped dress unlike all others. Particularly, I like that it seems fairly simple in its construction and minimal in the amount of fabric used. I also think that textured pewter-coloured silk is perfect to showcase the draping in its shadows, and the skewed racerback is both lovely and unexpected. I would definitely layer this dress over top of a sheer black slip or tube dress, and have it sweep the ground by wearing the flat lace-up sandals I got married in. 

The dress, by the way, comes from Toronto-based designer Carrie Hayes' newest (and best ever) collection, entitled 'War Machine', which is inspired by post-WWI neo-classicism. The other pieces are quite lovely too (below), with the prints being from actual photos of shipping yards. Brings a whole new meaning to 'rust-coloured', doesn't it?

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Sheer madness

So, not only am I stuck on maxi dresses, but I think I'm also stuck on some form of trench coat, perhaps of the sheer variety. I think it all started with Junya Watanbe's S/S 11 sheer rendition, which I had mostly forgotten about until I saw post about NYC-based designer Siki Im. Siki has an incredible trench coat in his F/W 11 collection (above left), which prompted me to take a look at his previous collection, leading to this sheer trench from Siki's S/S 11 collection (above right). 

Now, I obviously don't think that a sheer trench is practical by any means, and thus would never even contemplate buying one. However, I do think it has a certain charm about it, and so, if I could find a hybrid between a Siki Im trench and, say, an origami-/kaleidoscope-inspired sheer vest by fashion grad Shenaz Engineer (below), I would consider such an investment.

Then again, maybe I should just go for a sheer button up dress, such as by Tel Aviv-based label First Kiss.

(Black and white Shenaz Engineer photo via Frock Paper Scissors)

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Eleanor Amoroso, A/W 11

It seems as though I'm subconsciously looking for some sort of quirky maxi dress for the warmer weather, as those are the pieces I've been bookmarking and adding to my Etsy Favorites lately. So this morning's email is more than welcome, as I've never seen maxi dresses quite like this before. Well, except for in the same designer's previous collection. Remember the gorgeous handmade graduate collection of Eleanor Amoroso which consisted of macrame dresses and accessories? Well, the London-based designer has done it again with her A/W 11 collection, this time sticking mainly to black fine fringing to knot together some spectacular pieces, accented again with metal clasps and piping. Make sure you click on the photos to see the details (well, except for that first dark photo - that one is here more for the interesting silhouette possible only with a dress made of fringing). I'd love to see these pieces styled with some mesh dresses, leggings, and bodysuits underneath, a great cardigan or jacket on top (perhaps something by InAisce) and possibly some Dr. Martens. Specifically, I'm going to be dreaming about the dress with the cap sleeves (also seen below), and try to convince myself that I wouldn't let it get more knotted up if I were to get my hands on it.

For those of you that are interested, the clothing pieces can only be ordered directly from Eleanor herself, while the accessories are available now from NJAL's The Shop.

Monday, April 25, 2011


Though this afternoon I finally got outside to enjoy the spring weather and melting river, a Fall/Winter collection is what is catching my eye today. The newest from Audrey Cantwell of Black Market Baby, in fact, who now has a new label named Ovate. I particularly love those loose knits, which are perfect for layering with, say, a mesh dress or a retro bathing suit, such as this one by Toronto-based label Minnow Bathers. But please, winter, stay far far away.

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Susana Bettencourt

My, aren't these lovely? These are from the (London College of Fashion) MA (in Digital Fashion) graduate collection of Portugal-born London-based designer Susana Bettencourt, found via NJAL. I know nothing about knitwear, but my eyes do seem to know what I like. They also seem to want to watch more of The Wire, but, alas, I should probably give them a break, seeing as I just watched the entire 5th season in three days. Anyway, while I think of something else to do with my eyes (i.e. decide whether to read The Pale King or sleep), here's the back of that grey cardigan:

(Photos via