LARA LARA LARA

Above: The lovely Lara Stone

I recently saw a headline in a paper that said Vogue to use curvier models and the first thing I sarcastically blurted out was who, Lara Stone? Yes, Lara Stone apparently. Stone is featured in the January 2010 issue of American Vogue and I don’t think she’s curvy. I’m sure upon closer inspection compared with other models she is but I really don’t see it. Wintour said "Vogue has always been supportive of healthy models and will continue to be so in the future. And I hope that Lara’s success as a model, even though her image does not fit into the existing norm, will inspire the industry to rethink its current preferences.”

This is quite the coup for Wintour, reinforcing her influence over the fashion industry despite being in it for what many consider to be too long.

I suppose from a healthy image point of view this is a good thing and it’s easy to see both sides of the debate about too-skinny models. I have to admit it has become quite a trend over the past decade, particularly in the last five years where emaciated girls have become the norm in high fashion advertising and fashion spreads. The truth of the matter is, clothes look better on skinny people. That will never change but I think there’s going to be some changes over the next decade in what is perceived as an acceptable weight for a model.

It may not occur to many people but as well as there being trends for clothes there are trends for models too. The end of the 90’s and the early 2000’s saw a slew of peculiar looking models such as Devon Aoki, Hannelore Knuts and An Oost strutting their stuff. This was a reaction against years of classic, bombshell beauties like Claudia Schiffer, Naomi Campbell, Linda Evangelista etc.

Above: Devon Aoki

Above: Hannelore Knuts

Above: An Oost

Above: Some of the unstoppable supers


The last decade has not just been too-skinny it’s also been too white. There was a preponderance of white skinned, blonde haired waifs mostly from Eastern Europe with Sasha Pivovarova being the prime example. The back-lash has been interesting to see. Italian Vogue had an entire issue featuring black models such as Sessilee Lopez and Chanel Iman. The July issue was a success and a reprint was done to keep up with the demand. The sad part is that in this day and age a magazine is causing a stir and considered edgy by using black models. It really isn’t an issue, it’s just nervous executives with the belief that white people sell more product.


Above: Queen of the skinny bitches, Sasha Pivovarova

Above: Sessilee Lopez. Amaze


As well as white girls used as a premium marketing tool you’ve also got the ‘supers’ from the 90’s being trotted out of the stable and back onto the circuit in the hope that a recognizable face will draw customers to part with their cash. Christy Turlington recently did Escada and YSL, Claudia Schiffer also did YSL and a double whammy at Dsqared with Linda Evangelista and Naomi Campbell in elegant bondage (if there is such a thing) battling it out in a sexually aggressive campaign.Even the cougarlicious Jerry Hall starred in the Chanel bag campaign this year. At 52 she looked hot but heavily air-brushed, much like the Louis Vuitton Fall 09 campaign that starred Madonna.


Above: Naomi & Linda for Dsquared Spring 09

Above: Cougar Mommy Jerry Hall for Chanel


The use of Lara for Vogue is an incremental step towards a new era of models who will hopefully not be as bland and cadaverous as what we’ve seen in the last few years.


Below: Lara Stone for Givenchy. Curvy? Where?

ACCESSORY SLUT: INTERVIEW

Oh shiiiiittt you guys! Up and coming Australian accessories designer Anna Mason has debuted a neat range of smart shoes and bags. I caught up with her and found out about the new range and her shoe pet hates.

Hey Anna. You previously studied fashion at RMIT in Melbourne right? You’ve had no formal footwear training (which is amazing because you’ve made a very chic debut). What led you to dive into shoes and accessories?

I have always had a thing for shoes....like many girls I suppose. But it was more than that, I used to spend hours walking around Leffler and NSW leather, just getting inspired. Particularly by metallics and cutouts.

What inspired this collection and what did you set out to achieve with your debut? Was there a particular shoe or bag style you were dying to do?

My debut collection represents Joan of Arc inspired designs which emit a masculine air while encompassing metallics and texture. I was dying to do the mesh boot. My makers had never tackled anything like this before, but were onboard and ready for the challenge. They meticulously did the cut outs by hand to achieve the desired look. They even made the tool to do it!


If there’s one item from your collection that’s a must have, what would it be?

The mesh purse. Its amazing. Kind of punk yet disco if that makes sense.


Any shoe-don’ts? Like when girls wear heels and their pinky toe curls over the edge as though it’s making a run for it. That shit is nasty.

Okay one pet hate is when people wear shoes and their toes go over the front of the shoe. Crocs. Gumboot fashion, I don't get that.


It’s early days yet but do you think you’ll do anything for guys?

Yes, I'd like to. Guys get overlooked too often, I'd like to do something for them to. Maybe even more of a unisex range.

Tell us where we can pick up these amazing shoes and bags (when I say ‘pick up’ I clearly mean shop-lift).

I will be launching in Feb 2010. My range is called INDUSTRIAL WARRIOR. I will be selling/ exhibiting at Penthouse Mouse, Design A Space (Chapel St & Manchester Lane) as well as my own webstore.

Check out Anna's site HERE, Penthouse Mouse HERE and Design A Space HERE

THE RELEVANCY OF BLOGGERS

There’s words running about on the web at the moment regarding bloggers and their validity in the fashion industry. Oh no, are my days numbered? Little snippets here and there through to full articles from fashion blogger Fluff Chance and an interesting one from The Cut suggesting blogger du jour Tavi is a gimmick and quite possibly a fraud. Quelle horreur. That word, gimmick, keeps popping up more frequently. As bloggers are rising in the media industry, appearing at exclusive shows, swank parties and on the covers of magazines; editors, bloggers and readers are finally stepping back from the haze and asking how relevant are bloggers really?

A number of designers have voiced their concerns and fears over bloggers. Christopher Kane recently said “It’s a bit mad, isn’t it? It feels like it’s happened all of a sudden and at some shows this season the front row was just all bloggers. I think it will die down though and people know what they are doing. No one who wants to read a serious review of a show is going to look at what a 14 year old thinks. But it has become more critical; people can say what they want about anyone on a blog without consequences and that’s quite scary”.

Umm yeah, there’s so much to break down here. The opening line “It’s a bit mad isn’t it?” What, like bonkers? Crazy? Nuts? Oh absolutely Mr. Kane it’s a crazy world we live in now. Just that opening line suggests how out of touch Mr. Kane is with social media. Odd considering he’s only 27. Why is it scary that people can say whatever they want without consequence? If there’s something legally objectionable on a blog, a designer has every right to take them to court. Bloggers aren’t untouchable you know.

The other quote “No one who wants to read a serious review of a show is going to look at what a 14 year old thinks”. Sure, can’t argue with that. If I want a serious review I’ll go Sarah Mower or Cathy Horyn but just because an editor read your press notes doesn’t make their opinion more valid than that of a 17 year old in, say, Utah. More reputable for sure but no less valid and often more entertaining.

Dolce & Gabanna’s spring 2010 show had BryanBoy and Tommy Ton of Jak & Jil fame front row with little tables for their laptops so they could live blog the show. This is most definitely gimmicky but it worked. Who were these young upstarts with their own tables seated front row with Anna Wintour? Their presence drummed up the sort of interest reserved for celebrities.

Above: Tommy Ton

Interesting to see that the cameras are now turning from the catwalk to the front row. Yes there’s always snaps of editors and celebrities but writers? Unheard of. And it works, it does create interest. I don’t know how long that interest will last because it is gimmicky and people will lose interest before moving onto something else like Tumblr hair stylists, or make-up artists taking us backstage Twitpic’ing about the hair they did for Lara Stone.

So what are we getting from reading blogs? I have to wonder that myself but each blog is as different as each author’s personality. Take BryanBoy, a rich Philippino who went from swanning around the streets of Manila in heels to jet-setting to the shows in Paris. Credible fashion source? Not really. Highly entertaining? Definitely.

Above: BryanBoy

Or take Fashionologie.com with up to the minute insider news on the luxury fashion industry. Credible fashion source? Absolutely. Entertaining? I’ve never seen a picture of the girl who runs it. And Tavi. Firstly I’ll be honest, the green-eyed monster in me is jealous. There I said it. There’s so much to envy here. A thirteen year old girl gets invited to a party in Tokyo held by Rei Kawakubo of Comme Des Garcons. She then gets to pick out six items from the fall 09 collection as a gift for herself. Umm, yeah I’m insanely jealous of that. But she is fascinating. That’s the appeal. A remarkable sense of style and cute as a button too.

As long as bloggers keep bringing in the buzz for big brands then we’ve definitely got legs and relevancy in the industry. Blogging has been around for years and brands have finally cottoned on to the potential for new or future customers. Comme Des Garcons has never had this much press since the 80’s and they have Tavi to thank.

Above: Tavi

PS, if you’re looking for some related articles there’s a really great one on the Financial Times written by Nicola Copping.Click here


PPS, I need a cigarette and a cocktail after writing that.





TRIMÄPEE : THE CUBICAL CONFESSIONS

Above: My shoes and my Raf bag, well, Raf/Eastpak
Tux shoes. Pretty
The ever-chic Jason in a blurry back shot. Thanks Sony

Above: Nick looking cool in a cuffed pant and T


The crowd

Oh hai, I can't move

I went to the Trimapee store opening last night. This is their second store in Melbourne so business is presumably doing quite well. I was concerned by the limited foot traffic they'll get in a lane way but a city location usually brings in a wider customer base.

I arrived with my friend Nick at about 6.30-7ish and the place was packed. I was expecting to be immersed into an ocean of black drapey fuckwits and was pleasantly surprised by the amount of colour. One girl was in a pink jumpsuit. Rarr.
There was free beer which was nice except for the door guy who wouldn't let us leave to have a cigarette unless we left our beer inside.
The clothes were nice. There were some beautiful black linen jackets that'd be perfect for a chilly summer night. They were $550. There were also some too-cute 'Tux' shoes in the window, I think they run at about $300 which is reasonable for local fashion.

I took some pictures but only had my bullshit Sony so they're by no means amaze.

TRIMÄPEE : THE CUBICAL CONFESSIONS
30-32 JANE BELL LANE QV BUILDING
MELBOURNE VIC AUSTRALIA 3000

GET INSPIRED


Devon Aoki in Alexander McQueen photographed by Nick Knight

HERMES TOKYO

OK this is what a window display is about. Fuck Bloomingdales or whateverthefuck. See, this is why the Japanese will always be cooler than you.

AAAH SHOES






Arrived from the states this week. I've only worn them twice because I know they'll get ruined and will never look this amazing again. Sigh. And yes, I did smell them when I took them out of the box. I died.

OH KARL, NO



The latest Chanel collection for pre-fall 2010 was just shown in Shanghai. This is probs the worst Chanel collection I've ever seen. Not only were the clothes uninteresting but the children's text-book approach to references was schlocky and cringe-inducing.
It's like he did a Wikipedia search on traditional Chinese clothes followed by a brain storm: conical hat, but here's the genius *pause* we do it in tweed. Very chic hmm? Qi pao dress but we add gilt Chanel buttons, tres chic non? War-time civilian outfits in green but transformed into a Chanel suit. Encroyable!
Also, is it just a bad angle or is Uncle Karl looking festively plump?

FUCK, IT'S A TREND: PLASTIC

Yusss, as with most new trends I often scrunch up my nose like the designer let out a bad fart down the runway and think, whoa, I don't think so buddy, you need to check yourself. I won't name names though. It's not my style.
When I first saw the Prada spring collection I was disappointed by the lack of oomph. I'm still on the fence really but while looking over the collection again and quite a few others I've noticed the use of perspex, rubber and PVC. Not that it's hard to miss it in the Prada collection.
It's appeared in skirts, bags, dresses and shoes.

Versace

Isaac Mizrahi

Alexandre Herchcovitch

Gucci

Giles

Fendi

Fendi

Dsquared


Now if you're strapped for cash and need, like fucking MUST knock this shit outta the ball park then I suggest the following...

One pair of day-shift stripper heels


Plastic chandelier crystals. They're about $1 each, get a fist-full


BA-ZING! Prada Spring 2010. Srsly you guys, a little imagination and a hot glue gun is where dreams become reality