Monday, November 30, 2009
What with all the excitement surrounding the Pearl Going chronicles, I'd just about forgotten about my glorious Movember moustache. Today is the final day of Movember, which means you have one last chance to SPONSOR ME. Let's face it, that's a pretty impressive moustache by anybody's standards. So I think you should DONATE WILLINGLY AND GENEROUSLY. Let the coffers swell with your LIBERAL MONETARY GIFTS. To SPONSOR ME, click here. Thanks.
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Sunday, November 29, 2009
Continued from yesterday.
Back inside the house, Pearl proceeded to tell a small cluster of the guests about the incident upstairs involving the Herald on Sunday reporters. According to her, they had arrived uninvited, were trying to gather information for a news story and were sent packing - all facts I could corroborate. One fact, however, I could not confirm (because I simply did not know), was that they had been tipped off by (NZ Fashion Week owners) the Stewart family.
Continued from yesterday.
I arrived at the Ferry Terminal Building at 10:45am. There were no instructions for where I was supposed to meet everybody, so I wandered around for a couple of minutes until I found a small group of fashion media and designers - all of whom were distinctly bemused. There was no sign of Pearl Going. They directed me to a mini stall where I could pick up my tickets. A thirty-something year old man held a handwritten list on a yellow piece of paper. I said my name, got my tickets, and rejoined the group.
Saturday, November 28, 2009
I've just arrived home from one of the most bizarre days I've ever experienced. Before I recount the episodes leading up to today's events (what actually happened today will follow tomorrow in Chapter two), please bear in mind the following things:
1. I am not, nor do I profess to be a gossip writer.
2. I have no ill will towards Pearl Going, or any of the other parties involved.
3. Some things just need to be written about.
With all that in mind, let's begin. Go get yourself a cup of tea, this is a very long read.
Image /Jadore Fashion Blog
The plot thickens. I've just had a lengthy conversation with a source involved with America's Next Top Model and this is what they told me. The show will begin filming on either Thursday 3 December or Friday 4 December. The entire production company is American and has been flown out for the job. My source is unsure if there are any New Zealanders involved in the production of the show, but presumably TV3 will be on board in some capacity (since they're the screening channel). I've heard from another source that Tourism New Zealand has had some input - location scouting perhaps.
Friday, November 27, 2009
Image /Calypso Paoli
Me and Corinna at the Face Hunter party on Wednesday night.
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Okay so I've been calling everyone I know who might possibly have a little bit of information about America's Next Top Model filming in New Zealand, and there are two camps. Those who know but ain't talking, and those who know nothing. But sometimes not talking can still convey a few sneaky facts, so here's what I've got. According to one source (let's call them X), Tyra Banks herself arrives here in New Zealand next week.
Thursday, November 26, 2009
All Images /Elle UK
This wins (I just received confirmation from 62 Models). But if I'm not mistaken, that's New Zealand model Teresa Moore doing her thang in Victoria Beckham's latest denim collection. You know you're doing something right if you get a nod from Posh Spice herself. I'm not even being sarcastic, I'm genuinely impressed. It's like the perfect combination of two of my favourite things - models and celebrities. Ok, I'm done.
One more below.
Image /Auckland Street Style
Exciting news... There's a new street style blog in town. Auckland Street Style. It was created by a very pretty young girl named Olivia Coote (I stalked her Facebook profile), it's been running for about four days and it has four photographs up so far. I'm excited for three reasons:
1. We've never had a dedicated street style blog here in Auckland before.
2. She takes a good photograph.
3. One of her first subjects was Corinna, so you know she's got good taste.
4. I like her fonts.
That was four reasons but I just thought of the last one at the end. The moral of the story is - look out The Sartorialist (if you ever come to New Zealand).
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Here's the Sydney top ten list I wrote for the Herald...
After a particularly enthusiastic recommendation from a lady on my plane (she said they served the best Italian food in Sydney), I grabbed two friends and headed to Fratelli Fresh in Waterloo. It was packed. Swarms of hungry diners crowded around two giant blackboards/menus, and after a ten minute wait, we were seated between two aisles (the restaurant is a grocer by day), with a pineapple placed in the middle of our table as a decoration. The food lived up to the hype, and it was a bargain - A$65 for all three of us.
7 Danks St, Waterloo.
Wednesday, November 25, 2009
Calling all young, beautiful, old, peculiar and/or vaguely interesting people. Come one, come all. Yvan Rodic aka Face Hunter is here for one night only (tonight) and he's throwing a party to celebrate his arrival in New Zealand. Held at Plaything Gallery on Dacre Street in Newton, it starts at 7 and ends at 10 and Yvan will be running around taking pictures for his blog. So make sure you're dressed in your Sunday best and who knows, you might get Face Hunted (see what I did there?). The party organisers keep telling me that the guest list is full but I promise on my good name that if you turn up and storm the doors you'll get in. Just tell them I said so. Or ask for Yasmine (that might be a more sensible idea). Tell all your friends! See you tonight!
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I've just been busy Youtube-ing for the past hour or so - I'm currently obsessed with True by Spandau Ballet and Wicked Games by Chris Isaak. The Chris Isaak video features supermodel Helena Christensen. So I started watching videos of her. Who knew she was Danish? Anyway, I found the clip above. It's from MTV back in 1996. The topic - are models stupid? It's hilarious and amazing and the clothing is rave-tastic - the presenter is wearing a clear plastic bag. They got one of the questions wrong though. The biggest organ in the body is the skin.
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My obsession with wearing the same thing day in and day out didn't start with my beige pants. As a 12 year old I wore a pair of Boom jeans with a navy Quiksilver tee shirt every day for about nine months. At 22 I bought my first pair of super skinny jeans - black Van Winkles by Tsubi. I wore them every day for about 18 months. They're now a very dirty faded grey. Then I bought the above pair of Van Winkles. They were dark blue at the time. Look at them now. None of that pre faded BS. The trick to getting the best worn in jeans on the planet is to wear them every day and never wash them. I've had those ones about three years and washed them twice.
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Tuesday, November 24, 2009
Image /Jak and Jil
In light of the recent Daul Kim tragedy, I thought I'd open up the floor to talk about fashion's glamour - or lack thereof. I've been on just about every side of the industry - writing, PR, designing, model booking, retail, fabric sales, show production, mass manufacturing, styling, hair dressing - and I'm yet to encounter a truly glamorous fashion job. As an 18 year old starting out in Auckland, the prospect of working as a shop assistant for Little Brother, New Zealand's top menswear label, seemed like the epitome of style and sophistication. I had fun, yes, but there's nothing glamorous about standing on your feet for eight hours a day serving customers.
I wasn't the only guy running around with a camera backstage at the Marc by Marc Jacobs show back in September. Cole Mohr was given one to document the happenings, which he did, in classic Cole Mohr style. Basically it's him going up to the other male models and trying to get a reaction. Anyway, if you watch the whole thing, you might recognise your mate taking pictures of Cole Mohr videoing the other male models.
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Monday, November 23, 2009
Image /Nick Hudson
Here's the profile I wrote about Dion Lee for the NZ Herald while I was in Sydney...
Wunderkind. Boy genius. Overnight sensation. Rising star. Mention Dion Lee's name to those in the know and these are the breathless exclamations you'll hear. He's young, only 23, but already he's being tipped as the greatest talent to have come out of Australia. Ever. Imagine the pressure. It all got a bit much after his show at Sydney Fashion Week in April. I wandered backstage to grab a quick picture and found him sobbing between interviews and photo requests. But he lived up to the hype - the reviews were glowing and unanimous. Fashion Wire Daily's Godfrey Deeney described it as "the best debut collection by any designer on the planet this year".
Image /Katherine is Awesome
The plot thickens... I've just spoken to Nicole Wood, Group Publicist for TV3, who told me that while TV3 does show the series, they're not directly involved with anything that might or might not be happening. And, as far as she told me, she hasn't heard anything about it. BUT I've just received an email from an anonymous source saying that the show is definitely going to be filming here in New Zealand, the girls arrive this week and they're going to be shooting the final three episodes (including some kind of fashion show that will require local models). Can anyone else confirm that for me? Comment below anonymously or email me on email@example.com
Saturday, November 21, 2009
It was my beautiful and amazing and PREGNANT!!! sister Rebeccah's birthday yesterday. I called her about 7500 times to wish her a happy birthday and never got through so, Rebeccah, just in case you're reading this, I love you lots and hope you had a great day. For everyone else's benefit, this is a picture taken of me and Rebeccah in San Francisco back in 2004 when I was a straight West Coast thuggin' gangsta throwing up my Grey Lynn hood... with a pink belt. And yes, my sister is way stronger than me.
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I've gone on a made to measure spending frenzy over the past few months. First up, two pairs of pants from Crane Brothers cut from my original Little Brother beige pants. This meant giving up the beloved pair for two or so weeks - I don't know how I survived - but it was a necessary evil, the originals were just about on their last legs. The two new pairs are: one replica beige pair (see below); and one dusty navy blue pair made from this cotton that feels just like linen. I liked the dusty blue cloth so much that I had Murray make me up a blazer to match the pants - et voila, my new uniform for summer.
Friday, November 20, 2009
"We were very saddened today in the office to hear about the tragic death of Daul Kim. Apart from being stunned at the news there’s also a devastating sense that a bright, vivid and intriguing young girl has left us... I’m saddened that her world as a human being became so despairing for her even as we assumed that life must have been magical and glamorous."
Wednesday, November 18, 2009
Image /The Fashionisto
We've been pretty quiet on the Michael Whittaker front of late, but I've just seen these photos of him come up on The Fashionisto today. Shot with a group of the top guys from DNA in NYC - including Mark Cox and Marteinn Jonnson, do they remind anybody else of a kind of homoerotic Grease parody slash skinny version of an 80s fireman calendar? Check out the rest of them here. I'm about to catch a flight back to New Zealand in an hour or so. Looking forward to getting home.
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Tuesday, November 17, 2009
I just received an email from Fiona Hawtin, editor of Fashion Quarterly about the latest cover: "While we’re happy to admit we do retouch images, the summer cover is most certainly not comprised of one shot of our model’s head onto another of her body. The driftwood, however, has had quite a bit of work."
Sweet mother of all things merciful is that the most 13 year old Mexican boy moustache you've ever seen or what? Not to mention that Don King hair, but that's another story entirely. The point is, I'm trying to raise money for prostate cancer awareness, so if you'd like to donate, please click here. We're doing it all for chaaaaaaarity.
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Monday, November 16, 2009
Image /THE NEVERENDING STORY!
Yvan Rodic aka The Facehunter is on a bit of a world tour it would seem. In the last week or so he's been to Malaysia, Thailand and Australia. Next stop, Auckland. And to celebrate, he's having a party. Care of Designer Direction. On Wednesday the 25th. At Plaything Gallery (opposite the Kings Arms). I don't know what time it starts but let's just say get there at 6:30pm and you should be good to go. Here's what I know about The Facehunter. He's a streetstyle photographer; he's Swiss-French; he's quite tall; he dresses in awesome clothes; he sometimes stops talking halfway through a sentence to run and take someone's photograph (he did that to me outside Rag and Bone in New York - stopped talking, that is, not ran over to take my photograph); he makes pretty girls swoon (you'll see what I mean); my friend is obsessed with him and Facebook messaged him to ask for his hand in marriage but didn't get a reply. Darkness. So with all that in mind, no doubt it'll be a fun night. See you there!
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Sunday, November 15, 2009
Besides talking about fashion all day long and growing the thickest, most luxurious moustaches imaginable, I have two other obsessions. Teacups and religion (but not necessarily in that order). Today I got to enjoy three out of four. First stop, Mitchell Road Auctions where I bought a set of four vintage orange glass teacups (see below). Second stop, the Sydney Baha'i Temple in Mona Vale (see above). I'll be writing about both locations as two of my ten top-ten-things-to-do-in-Sydney list for the Herald. The third, of course was the moustache, which is so visible now I almost look my father (who sports a healthy moustache year-round), and which I swear grew at least a milimetre or so over the course of the full day excursion.
Saturday, November 14, 2009
Here in Sydney the weather's warm enough to rock short sleeves at night with no fear of goosebumps. A couple of friends and I made a trip to the new Lacoste store on Queen Street on Wednesday and I picked up this polo. I've been wearing it nonstop ever since, it may soon become my new summer uniform. People keep calling it 'retro' but I like to think of it as mid-twentieth century-chic.
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Friday, November 13, 2009
Those writers who've been banned from numerous fashion shows have been playing on my mind a lot this week - anybody who'll willingly put their necks on the line to give an often unpopular opinion is a-ok in my books. Overseas it's a fairly regular occurrence - people like Suzy Menkes, Cathy Horyn and Colin McDowell have all been refused admission to big name designers' shows (Armani, Balenciaga, Carolina Herrera to name a few), simply for doing their jobs - giving their honest (and educated) opinions. In New Zealand, the idea of honest and educated opinions when reviewing our local designers' work seems oxymoronic. Actually not even oxymoronic, overtly non existent. Every season a new set of collections comes out, and unfailingly, every season it's the same - Zambesi, incredible! Karen Walker, stupendous! Kate Sylvester, a dream! Nom*D, to die for! Who does it help? Nobody as far as I can see.
"I think the past and one's own experiences are so important. You have to know what you're talking about. It does annoy me about young journalists who know bugger all, and yet they sit in judgment. The level of fashion journalism is rock bottom at the moment. A man like Karl Lagerfeld is highly cultured, with a huge breadth of experience and knowledge. But among today's media, he's casting pearls before swine."
[Fashion Week Daily]
Thursday, November 12, 2009
I just finished packing for my trip to Sydney - flying out in about four hours. I'm trying to take as little as possible - some white tee shirts, a couple of sweaters, a few shirts, some jeans, swimming shorts, a blazer and a book. I'll be there a week. This is my first ever trip over to Sydney to hang out and take in the sights - I've only been twice before, both times for Fashion Weeks. I have a few things lined up so far - an interview with up and coming designer Dion Lee and a top-ten-things-to-do-in-Sydney for the Herald.
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Murray and I have this German model named Corinna staying with us at the moment. We love her. She's relaxed, eats funny food (like dry weet bix) and doesn't mind us screaming everything in over the top German accents. NEEEEEEEIIIIIIIIN! And she fits all my clothes. Perfectly. So last night I convinced her to battle the cold and let me take a whole bunch of pictures of her wearing my favourite outfits. I'm always saying how much I love girls who wear boys' clothes, but finding a girl who can wear all of my clothes and look amazing has just taken the obsession to a whole new level.
See the results below.
Wednesday, November 11, 2009
Suzy Menkes with Jefferson Hack
"I think it’s so hard for anybody to understand now how revolutionary his ideas were. The idea of wearing pants to the office! And the stories are legion. Nan Kempner wore one of the first Saint Laurent trouser suits to one of those fancy Madison Avenue restaurants and was denied access. She famously took off her pants and walked in wearing only the jacket. And it was that kind of revolution that was echoed in fashion and in life."
I've never been one to live outside of my means but I have been going buckwild shopping-crazy lately. Bear in mind that I wear the same thing every day of the week so buying anything new is a rare occurrence for me, but now that I've started I just can't stop. Yesterday, that turtle neck sweater from Zegna. Today, new Loake black leather shoes from Working Style. Officially the most expensive shoes I've ever owned, but they're letting me layby them and I was allowed to take them away without paying the full amount. I know I said last week that I never wear black, but I've been dying for a pair of really schoolboy looking shoes for ages. I saw these ones from across the room and just couldn't help myself...
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Tuesday, November 10, 2009
"It is unnatural for me to choose the girls and I don't enjoy it. I hate the idea of judging a human being in that way, I find it very embarrassing. The moment they enter the room I decide whether they are right for the show because it is their personality that has to strike me first. I'm looking for the woman who can represent my idea better than any other."
I just bought this maroon turtle neck sweater from Ermenegildo Zegna (they're having a crazy sale on Broadway at the moment). I've been obsessed with turtle necks for a few weeks now and really wanted to get one to go under my cord blazer. Amazing how a little thing like a turtle neck immediately makes you look like a pretentious pseudo intellectual. My art-critic credibility level just went through the roof.
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Imagine this scenario. You're a small, New Zealand based clothing business named Ruby. You've been operating for nine years. Cotton On, a large, multinational Australian company applies to IPONZ for a name to be trademarked that is very similar to yours - Rubi. It's accepted. The multinational opens its doors. All of a sudden your customers start calling you up asking about the new stores. You say it has nothing to do with you. Confusion ensues. You investigate, only to discover that the trademark application has already gone through, so you're basically left with two options - allow the multinational to trade under the same name as you, or follow the lengthy and expensive process of applying to have them deregistered. It gets worse. In a classic big business, bully-tactic move, Cotton On has just applied to IPONZ to have Ruby's trademark deregistered.
Monday, November 9, 2009
Colin McDowell with YSL's Stefano Pilati /StyleCartel
"I've been banned from several shows in my time. Balenciaga banned me last season. I wrote about the pretentiousness of fashion houses and meant Balenciaga, of course. I've never met Nicolas, but I think he's a fantastic designer. But banning journalists is, I think, a little unwise. When I'm banned, I'm always pleased because I know I've said something important and I think that's my job. Armani was the first show I was banned from, many years ago, and I can't see that changing-why would I want it to?! It's not an easy job, sitting there for an hour waiting for a show to start on a tiny chair in cramped conditions. It's abominable."
I wonder if any New Zealand designer has ever banned a journalist from their shows?
[Fashion Week Daily]
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Damn that MO is coming in thick. You might remember I gave myself a three day run up, so this is actually day 12. I'm impressed. Most importantly you might also remember that it's all being done for charity - to raise awareness and funds for prostate cancer. With that in mind, PLEASE SPONSOR ME!!! Every dollar counts.
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It's been an interesting last five days. Never before have I ever had such a strong response to a post as the one I got for the Superette ads (my blog was even quoted in yesterday's Herald on Sunday). At this stage it's up to 90 comments (and still growing), and there must have been at least 20 comments I've denied because of swearing or irrelevant nastiness. It's amazing to me - sometimes I'll do a post that I think will create a huge stir, it'll get no comments at all, and sometimes I'll do one not knowing what the response will be and it'll go nuts. I just had a read through all the comments and thought I'd write a little summary of what I thought of it all.
Saturday, November 7, 2009
Image /Steve Wood
"'There was that old bloke I told you about once before.'
'Oh, this wrinkly old bloke who comes every year. He looks like Freddie Kruger and is always desperately trying to say hi to all the models in his leather shirt, leather trousers, mink scarf and cowboy hat. There he was, sitting in the Hotel Costes, drinking on his own, trying to coerce some young model into sitting with him, and I just wanted to go home.'"
[Lydia the Model to the Anonymous Designer in Fashion Babylon.]
Friday, November 6, 2009
As we all know, it's Movember right now, and I'd completely forgotten to blog about it, but I'm participating once again! Last year I got so into it that I just kept on growing and growing it until I looked in the mirror one day in February and realised why my girlfriend had left me. I actually cheated this year and gave myself a three day run up, so this is nine day's growth. Pitiful, I know. The point is, SPONSOR ME!!! Movember is particularly dear to me because my grandfather died of prostate cancer three years ago so anything that can be done to avoid anymore grandsons' hearts breaking can only be a good thing. If you're interested, click here. Every dollar helps!
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Thursday, November 5, 2009
"We all eat together at the studio. I have interns who are in charge of the food. At first they were angry. They had their masters degrees in fashion or art and they didn’t feel like they should have to go and buy food. But I said to them, 'By going out and buying food for everyone, you’ll get to know Paris, and you can practice your French.' I think when our relationship starts with food bringing people together, it gets deeper. I think relationships get closer when you share more things than work. They talk about desire, they talk about what it is that they feel like having today. We all eat together. I hardly eat out when I am in Paris. I don’t do lunch dates because it cuts my day. I rarely go out now. I rarely do parties. I don’t do dinners for 10 where you talk about the weather. I can’t take it. I’d rather eat at the studio, because we know each other and we won’t talk about the weather . . . So there is a starting point."
Families who eat together, stay together.
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Image /The Australian Women's Weekly
The biggest news story flying around Australia over the last week has been the gargantuan controversy that is Sarah Murdoch choosing to grace the cover of pre-eminent high culture magazine The Australian Women's Weekly with no airbrushing. Her reason - "I think when I'm retouched in photographs it's worse, because when people see me in real life they go, 'Oh God, isn't she old?'" First of all, it must be noted that Sarah Murdoch is not old. She's 37. Second, she once teetered on the brink of supermodel-dom - in her career Murdoch starred in campaigns for L'Oréal, Revlon, Ralph Lauren, Yves Saint Laurent and Estée Lauder, and featured on the covers of Vogue, Elle, Marie Claire, Glamour, GQ and Harper's Bazaar (thanks Wikipedia). Did I mention she's married to Rupert Murdoch's son? The point I'm making is that when a (still reasonably young) former quasi-supermodel chooses to pose untouched on the cover of a magazine, they're probably not taking quite the same risk as another non-beauty queen type lady. Imagine if she'd gone with no retouching and no makeup. Now that would be taking a stand.
Wednesday, November 4, 2009
Image /NY Times
"I love to just walk around and hang out. I'm a major hang-out type of person. I don't care about being recognized. Fashion designers think they are famous. In fact, they are not, not even Calvin Klein. There's only one famous fashion designer and that's Karl."
Hedi Slimane is obviously forgetting Dayne Johnston...
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Holy moly these new ads of Superette's are doing the internet rounds overtime! And I mean overtime! with an exclamation mark because they've just shown up on New York Magazine's' blog The Cut. Huge! If you haven't already seen them, there are two, both with dead girls in frocks, both sporting the slogan 'BE CAUGHT DEAD IN IT'. A quick Google search shows 795 dedicated entries already. Now that's what I call a social media success story. First of all, good on them for spending some money and getting an actual ad agency (DDB) to create a campaign for them (an advertising expert estimated the cost at between 40 and 100k depending on media buys), and nice work on the controversy.
Tuesday, November 3, 2009
I recently re-read Undressed by Stacy Gregg - to my knowledge the only book ever written specifically about New Zealand fashion and the designers who create it. Published in 2003, it's slightly outdated now (a few of the designers have dropped off - Nicholas Blanchet and Marilyn Sainty - and current big name designers who weren't around back then obviously aren't mentioned), but it still gives a fairly holistic overview of our little industry. Most interesting for me, was the section on Zambesi, Nom*D, WORLD and Karen Walker's show at London Fashion Week in 1999, dubbed the 'New Zealand Four'.
"At London Fashion Week, the international press, always on the lookout for the Next Big Thing, instantly latched on to New Zealand's talents. In their enthusiasm for our designers they labelled us the 'New Belgians' and 'dark and intellectual'."Which got me thinking. We're a country known for wearing black. Lots and lots of black. Dark - yes, intellectual - maybe, moody - definitely, but always black. Why?
Honourary Kiwi model Stella Maxwell has just shown up on models.com as their latest Model of the Week. That's a pretty big deal. Basically every famous model that you can think of began their career with a Model of the Week nod from models.com. And as far as I'm aware, the only other New Zealander to ever make it on there was Nick Bryant back in 2003. But I'm still holding out hope for Michael Whittaker.
Monday, November 2, 2009
Image /Cleo Magazine
I was recently asked to be Cleo Magazine's guest Style Counsel for their latest issue. Basically I had to look at a whole bunch of celebrity photos and judge them on their individual styles. I got three of my favourite girls in the mix - Natasha Poly, Alexa Chung and Whitney Port, plus Chloe Sevigny, Angelina Jolie, Agyness Deyn and Kate Bosworth.
Cleo is out today, so go grab yourself a copy! Read what I had to say about all the girls below.
Katy Perry and Russell Brand at Galliano S/S 2010 Image /Bauer Griffin
"Glorious on one level. An incredible spectacle. But on another level I thought the fact that this fashion show exists on our planet during the current ecological and economical troubles, it’s like visiting someone with cancer and finding them having a facelift. Stop the madness."
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All Images /The Sartorialist
Summer brings out my inner dichotomy. On the one hand, I love the heat. On the other, the hotter weather means that I can no longer run around in my sweaters. It's quite the conundrum. When I was in Milan in June, it was hot. Really really hot. Especially coming from mid-winter New Zealand. I went from zero to 35 degrees in 24 hours. All I could wear was a white tee shirt and my beige pants. Everyday of the week. Around me were hundreds of Italian men dressed in beautiful two or three piece navy suits. I'd never felt so under-dressed in my life and I couldn't figure out how they were managing it. Over there it seems style takes precedence over comfort. Here in New Zealand though, the onset of Summer brings with it one outfit of choice for men - singlet, board shorts, jandals. Horror.