Tuesday, March 31, 2009

#390 Forget chicken of the sea, it's all NZ labels for Pete's babes Ashlee


Once again on the topic of celebrity endorsements, my main man Pete Wentz and his wife Ashlee Simpson were in Sydney last week for the Australian MTV music awards. According to Grazia, Ash needed a dress for the awards (didn't her mother ever tell her to come prepared?), so she headed to Bondi boutique Ourmishmash for a last minute dash shop.

While she was there she picked up an Ellery dress (above) that she wore to the party, and a few pieces from New Zealand designers twentysevennames and Stolen Girlfriends Club (pics of what she bought after the jump).

From twentysevennames:

A Bangs singlet dress and....

Mapplethorpe tee shirt from the Crazy Horse AW09 collection.

And from Stolen Girlfriends Club:

Steve King @ Reload

A Squid Vicious dress and...

Steve King @ Reload

Starman Vest, both from Pretty Vacant AW09.

#389 Panel beating, supermarket shopping and no Burts Bees

I did two things I very rarely do this morning – went supermarket shopping, and walked. You might remember last week I had a few car dramas, specifically, a rust problem which led to my Honda Civic failing its warrant and led to me getting quoted $1500 for the repair job (and then crying). I freaked out at the cost of repairing it, and put a call out on Facebook for help:

My saviours

Luckily my prayers were answered and my friend Kendra told me about this cheap place on Great North Rd, so off I went. I pulled up and got out of my car. A middle aged Chinese woman came to help me. I showed her my Warrant of Fitness paper and she had a look at the rust. "You want cheap price?" she asked. "Yes please!" I said, imagining maybe $1200 or so. "For you, three hundred dollar." I tried to stay calm and casual so she wouldn't feel like she'd gone in too cheap. "Hmmm, $300 you say... Yeah, I reckon I can deal with that, book her in."

The results of my supermarket shopping - I'm fairly sure that all the food groups are covered.

I dropped my car off to her this morning, then decided to go to the supermarket on the way home. Anybody who knows me knows I'm absolutely useless at feeding myself. I hate supermarket shopping, can't stand cooking for myself and have an inability to motivate myself to do either. So I generally just don't. Sometimes I have a few lucky weeks where I get several dinner invitations (my aunty Debbie and cousin Nikau have been feeding me quite a bit lately), but if not, I'll usually sit around thinking 'I should go eat...' but never quite get up and do it.

Let me give you an example. Yesterday, I woke up at about 8am and went to Benediction, my friendly neighbourhood cafe, and bought a ham sandwich and a small piece of ginger crunch. By about 3:30pm I was feeling a bit peckish again, so I went across the road to Kohu Road (the best ice cream company ever created), and got myself a chocolate ice cream. Later, I ate a chocolate licorice log. By around 8:30pm I was pretty hungry again, and I texted a few people to see if they had dinner plans. They all did, so I stayed at home thinking 'I really should eat something,' but never quite got around to doing it. Anyone out there looking for a ward?

Breakfast - Hubbards muesli with yoghurt

Followed by a delightful cup of Moroccan Mint green tea

My tower of Burts Bees

Feeling rather productive after my supermarket shop this morning, I went up to Ponsonby Road to buy a new tin of Burts Bees. I'm absolutely addicted to this stuff, and must have it with me at all times. Sadly, World Beauty Ponsonby had sold out, so I'm Burts Bees-less until I get my car back and make it into their Vulcan Lane store.

But at least I'm not hungry...

Monday, March 30, 2009

#388 NZ's Next Top Model Episode 3 - Recap

screengrab - TV3

After an agonising three day wait, episode three of New Zealand's Next Top Model has finally made its way onto the TV3 website, and I've just managed to have a good look at it away from the stress of live blogging. First things first, this week's Modelism. There were several strong contenders for the stupidest-thing-said-of-the-week award, but epilept, former drug addict and outed model Sarah really took it away. Her winning line:
"I don't know why I'm good some days and not others, maybe I'm bipolar! He he!"

He he indeed.

This week we followed the young hopefuls as they took it to the street with hip hop dance lessons (above) then competed in an 80s fluro-slogan-tee/hip hop catwalk challenge (below). Call me sexist, but I'd expect that if you've got 12 girls in a room, at least half of them should be able to pop, drop and lock it. Not these girls! Wellingtonian Laura put it best when she said how funny it was watching all "these lanky girls" awkwardly attempting to navigate their way through a hip hop routine. They should've given me a call for some pointers - they don't call me Isaac Chris Brown-Michael Jackson-Patrick Swayze-Hindin Miller for nothing. The real let down was Sarah though, who flat out refused to learn the routine, arguing that
"I know that I'm not going to get it so what's the point of going out and making a dick of myself when there's no point?"

I like that logic.

When it came time for the catwalk challenge though, three girls stood out for me: Christobelle, who can move for a white girl from Remuera (disclaimer: I don't actually know that she's from Remuera); Rhiannon (above), who did some sweet Usher-style footwork down the catwalk, and Ajoh (below), who dipped it VERY low at the end of the runway. The judges only liked Christobelle though, and they went so far as to say that Ajoh's walk was hoochie. You say that like it's a bad thing! What's hip hop without a bit of hooch?

Big drama appeared in the first real fight of the series, between Ajoh and Teryl-Leigh when Ajoh accused Teryl-Leigh, gasp! shock! horror! of racism. All over a little shower timing confusion! It was all very exciting. Ajoh pulled Teryl-Leigh out of the bathroom because she'd taken longer than their allowed five minutes in there, then when Teryl-Leigh got angry about it, Ajoh pulled the race card, saying
"Is it because I'm black or something?"
This got everybody very upset and polarised some of the girls who took Ajoh's side, and others who jumped to Teryl-Leigh's defense. Ajoh got so worked up at one point that she said she was going to leave the house. They should have settled in on the runway.

It's a walk off.

After all that heat on the street, the girls got to chill out (ah ah ah) on the slopes at "New Zealand's only indoor ski field," Snow Planet in Silverdale. Shooting the occasion under the watchful eye of Chris Sisarich was top NZ photographer, and general all round nice guy, Craig Owen. It was a bit of a higgledy piggledy affair. Loud makeup (below), cringey clothing (think: lycra) and snow being thrown in the girls' faces. Didn't you know, guys? That's what being on a real life photo shoot is like!

Of all the girls, Ajoh and Olivia seemed to have the most problems, Ajoh, at least was understandable - the girl had never been on or near snow before. For Olivia though (one of the sisters), I think it's safe to say next week will be her last.

Once again Sarah flat out refused to take part in the challenge, citing home sickness.

The clear challenge winner was Christobelle, who pulled out some huge editorial poses (like the Bryan Boy original above).

When it came time for judging, the predictable occurred - Christobelle was praised, Sarah and Olivia were the bottom two. Colin tried arguing for Sarah but it didn't work out, and Sarah was sent home.

She didn't look too upset.

I don't know about you guys, but I'm still going for Victoria and Christobelle. Don't forget to tune in on Friday night for the next NZ's Next Top Model live blog!

All screengrabs - TV3.

#387 The Kills - dying for Meadowlark jewellery

photo: Lucy Hunt

British band The Kills (sans Kate Moss) were in Auckland for one show only last week, which, by all accounts was a goodie. Besides playing, word on the street is the duo did a shoot with NO. Magazine, and managed to get in a spot of jewellery shopping.

Luckily a camera was on hand, and here are the results (more after the jump).

All photos: Lucy Hunt

Sunday, March 29, 2009

#386 It's my jam by Jordan Rondel - off the shoulder

Balmain FW09 - style.com

I never thought I'd say this, but I'm starting to like off the shoulder clothes. I've always thought it was such a trashy look having one shoulder showing - either make it strapless or have two sleeves please. But after trawling through the latest shows, I've fallen for some of the asymmetrical pieces that have been coming down the runways. I love to show off my back and shoulders and this is an edgy and sexy way to do it.

Here are some fall 2009 asymmetrical outfits (more images after the jump).

Lanvin FW09 - style.com

Gucci FW09 - style.com

Chloe FW09 - style.com

Saturday, March 28, 2009

#385 A few sneaky backstage shots from the Karen Walker show by Jordan Rondel

Models Derya Parlak and Amy Pennington

While some of us were live blogging up a storm last night, Jordan went along to Karen Walker's The Believers show at Stephen Marr in Newmarket. She managed to sneak backstage just before the show was about to start to snap a couple of photos.

Here's what she got...

Whoever said they don't read??

Derya and Amy take two.

The mayhem backstage.

Juliet Forde and Anouk Rondel - front of house, front of goody bags (which were filled with Rosemount Wine, Lucy Vincent Marr candles and Elizabeth Arden makeup).

Friday, March 27, 2009

#384 NZ's Next Top Model Live Blog!

#383 Live blogging NZ's Next Top Model tonight!

If you, like me, have nothing better to do on a Friday night than stay home to watch reality TV, sign onto Isaac Likes tonight at 7:15pm to join in on the NZ's Next Top Model live blog. Who's hot, who's not, who's getting kicked off, who's wearing too much eye makeup (I'm looking at you Colin Mathura-Jefrees)...

Get in on the action! 7:15pm (NZ time), here at Isaac Likes.

#382 Balmain's boys - taking you to the danger zone

Love Blog

Remember a few weeks ago I did a post about the Balmain women's collection being reminiscent of Slimane-era Dior Homme? Well the men's collection has just emerged online, on Love Magazine's blog, and to my eye, there's no Slimane in sight. Instead, references seem to be pointing towards a different style icon – one Tom Cruise. Specifically, a formative 80s Tom Cruise film. Can you guess which one I'm talking about...?

Top Gun. Note the brooding motorcycle jacket above. And below...

Love Blog

A sheepskin lined jacket... pretty air force right?

Love Blog

A leather trench... more World War II than Top Gun, but I'll claim it for its army association.

Love Blog

Shirtless with jeans... anybody remember that infamous volleyball scene?

Thursday, March 26, 2009

#381 My life as a blogger

I took my car to the vehicle testing station first thing this morning to get a warrant of fitness. It failed due to a little patch of rust on the boot. Off to the panel beaters to get a quote. $1500. Surely not. I went back home to call mum for advice and transcribe the Kings of Leon press conference quotes. I decided to try to cheat the system and took my car to a different garage for a second opinion. Once again, it failed. Rust. Whoever heard of a car crashing because of rust?

'What caused the accident?' 'Patch of rust on the boot, officer.'

Usually a $1500 bill wouldn't faze me to the point of despair, but things are different right now. First off, I'm not sure that my forest green 1996 Honda Civic is even worth $1500. So do I sell the car for parts and go carless for however long it takes me to find a new one? Or pay the $1500 to get it fixed?

Second, as you might have realised by the ever increasing frequency of my posts, I'm now a full time blogger. But being a full time blogger doesn't just mean writing all the time. Sure there's the chasing down stories, the press conferences, the interviews, the research etc, but now there's a whole other side to the equation. The business management side. Accounts, invoicing, time management. And the entrepreneurial side. Development, contacting prospective sponsors, making plans and following through with them.

So I've gone from this carefree, once-a-day blogger, to a CEO, CFO, employee AND ideas man. Don't get me wrong, I'm having the time of my life. But my god it gets stressful having to do everything for yourself. So when everything feels like it's exploding around you, the last thing you want or need is for your car to fail its warrant of fitness. Due to $1500 worth of rust.

Needless to say, today I've been feeling pretty overwhelmed by it all. I've been jumping from idea to idea,
'Ahh maybe I should be doing this, maybe I should be doing that, ahhh am I doing the right thing? Should I have done this differently, is this opportunity still open to me, have I talked to enough people today, should I have written more posts, why is my damn car rusting away!?'

Whenever I'm freaking out, I always turn to my parents for support. My mum is a fantastic listener and doesn't mind me going on about everything for hours on end. So tonight I chewed my mum's ear off for an hour or so, then she put me onto dad. He said, 'listen Isaac, everything's fine, you're young, there's nothing wrong with you, you've got the world at your feet."

Then he quoted the opening passage of Henry Miller's Tropic of Cancer:
"I have no money, no resources, no hopes. I am the happiest man alive."

I have some money, no car and lots of hope. I'm fricken stressed, a little frightened and pretty overwhelmed.

But I'm happy.

#380 Zac Efron, the college years


From one US supergroup to another US superbrand with a supermodel. Here we have Zac Efron, all grown up, romping in the dirt with Lithuanian model Edita Vilkeviciute on the pages of Interview magazine. Boys the world over must be feeling pretty silly for dissing High School Musical right about now. Not me, I loved it from the start.

One more image after the jump, it's NSFW unless your work allows you to look at full frontal pictures of girl's breasts?



#379 A few words with Kings of Leon

If you'd consider asking somebody a question and them answering it a 'conversation', then I 'conversed' with Kings of Leon yesterday. Well I went to their press conference and I asked them a question, and they answered it. As you'd expect, Caleb the lead singer was the most loquacious with his answers, then Jared (the guy on his left), then Matthew (the guy on the far left), then Nathan the long haired drummer. The band were in Auckland for their Only By The Night tour, their fourth time playing in New Zealand. Sadly, they had no memory of their previous NZ tours "due to the drinking".

Here's what they had to say for themselves.

On what the family thinks of their success:
"They're all claiming to be named Leon at this point, all of our family has been behind us 100% and they just miss the fact that we don't get to spend much time with them anymore, but they appreciate how nice the Christmas presents are getting though, so I don't think they're complaining too much... Cars, houses..."

Which songs are their favourites:
"A lot of our favourite songs don't even make it on the albums. You make an effort to put the songs on there that are gonna cross over to territories that you haven't touched on yet, but I (Caleb) like country music, so I like songs like Wicker Chair and Talihina Sky and stuff like that. Favourites change when you make the records, but as a whole I think we've liked Manhattan a lot, True Love Way, Ragoo, Knocked Up, Molly's Chamber - just joking, (whispering) we hate that song."

On whether they'd be keen to jump off the Harbour Bridge:
"Do you guys literally just jump off? I (Matthew) would love to do it but then I'd be scared that I'd hurt my back or something and then these guys would be mad and you guys would be mad because we couldn't play the show. As long as I (Caleb) get paid, I don't care what happens."

On their haircuts:
"I (Matthew) think haircuts are a normal thing. I don't know we just thought it was time for a change, it gets really hot in Tenessee."

On painkillers and alcohol in the writing process:
"I (Caleb) did take meds for my shoulder but then you know they inspired me to write songs so I kinda took them for a little longer too. I find that I can be more honest if I can be a little altered, so I'm always drinking a little bit when I'm writing."

Then there was a break in questioning as Jared realised where he was, and pointed out towards Devonport:
"That mountain over there, or that hill, is that where they have the little cement cave things that you can go through? In 2004 I stayed up until sunrise and went over there at like eight in the morning, so wasted, and went through all those little things and got lost. And so I do definitely remember New Zealand."

On how they got into tight jeans:
"Actually it was an accident that we even started wearing these. My mom used to alter our pants, which basically just meant making them snug on the legs, but they were never really tight at the bottom. And she messed up a pair of Jared's pants, and he walked out and he had on skin tight pants, and we all called him Peter Pan at first, but then it was like, that looks pretty cool! Well I (Jared) went to a party, and I didn't come home alone..."

On the cult of celebrity:
"You can't really pay that much attention to it. It's fun to read, I wake up in the morning and the first thing I do is get my computer and like, what did I do? I don't know it's just something to pass the time when you're on the road. The stuff that we read is just hilarious, and the stuff that we allegedly do is - we get up to some crazy stuff, but the stuff that they come up with is way better than what we're actually doing. They always get one fact that's right in there, but everything around it is wrong. We witnessed a fight backstage at the Brits, and had nothing to do with it, and it turned into 'Caleb beat Matt up'. I (Caleb) just saw on Wikipedia that in high school I was really great at gymnastics."

On the subject of ladies - who has the most success and have they got any tips? (My question):
"We all raise our hands at once. I think whoever has the best success with ladies is whoever is single at the time. We usually have girlfriends and the one person that's single just gets their pick. It's been years since we got tons of ladies, or, a year, there are good days though. But I'll be honest, back then our standards weren't too high. It was like 'I slept with 40 girls, well I slept with 50 girls,' yeah but they were all ugly (laughs)."

On onstage pranks:
"I hate when for the last show a band does something stupid. This one tour in America a male stripping cowboy got on the stage during King of the Rodeo, and that was annoying. The crowd was really wanting to hear that song and you just messed it up by having a stripper out there."

On how they got into music:
"We were always into music with church, because that was our contribution to what our dad was doing - he was preaching and we were playing music. And afterwards we would get in the car with girls on the way to the pizza place and we would sing Boyz II Men - it was just for the ladies."

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

#378 Meet Felix, NZ's Next Top MALE Model

Remember when I was in Dunedin I mentioned a young male model who I could see leaving this isolated island at the end of the earth and going out to make his fortune abroad? Here he is, his name's Felix, he's repped by AliMcD in Dunedin, and I think he's going to be huge. And I should know, after all I did discover Kate Moss. Or was that Sarah Doukas... I forget.

More pics after the jump.

#377 Former NZ Prime Minister (and my best good mate) Helen Clark nabs top UN job

According to stuff.co.nz, Helen Clark is on the verge of being named head of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP). If she gets it, it'll be the highest international post held by a New Zealander since Mike Moore was Director-General of the World Trade Organisation. The announcement is said to be "close but will not be made today." John Key's National government is said to have supported her nomination too. Isn't that nice?

Go Helen! But really, I'll take any excuse to bring that photo out one more time.

#376 What's in store at Workshop by Jordan Rondel

Everyone knows Workshop. It's been around for as long as I can remember (coming up 30 years to be exact), an indication of its huge success and popularity. Today we visited the grand Newmarket store on Morrow Street to do the usual photo taking, trying on clothes and creating mess for the unfortunate shop assistants to tidy up.

Workshop is one of the only places in New Zealand where you can find Miu Miu, Vanessa Bruno, Marc by Marc Jacobs, See by Chloe and Alexander Wang. They also stock Sienna Miller's label Twenty8Twelve and some sweet Petit Bateau pieces. Aside from the imported labels, Workshop sells its own brands Workshop Denim and Helen Cherry.

Isaac in Workshop Denim.

I've always had a soft spot for Helen Cherry's pretty and elegant clothes, like this black blouse I tried on. I also fell in love with this beautiful Alexander Wang blazer, which would be mine if I could afford it.

This cabinet is full of contemporary 1960's glassware and pottery which is part of Chris Cherry's (Workshop founder) private collection. It's really cool stuff and you can buy it in store.


18 Morrow Street, Newmarket
(09) 524 6844