Showing posts with label Reviews. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Reviews. Show all posts

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

#2331 The Scene at Saint Laurent Paris

Saint Laurent Paris S/S 2014

As far as scenes go, Saint Laurent had everyone beat. Beck arrived first, completely unnoticed by the awaiting paps. Jamie Bochert and Michael Pitt slipped by, and a seven foot tall tranny – followed closely by a heavily made up Harry Brant – garnered a moment's interest from the crowd. But it was Salma Hayek who really got the crowd going. Wearing a cute black dress with a leather bustier that clung in all the right places then poufed at the waist, she was gracious to the fans and candy for the photographers. And yes, Slimane's international hipsters were out in full force.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

#2311 Burberry Prorsum's S/S 2014 menswear collection is a bloody good time


On this day, four years ago, my sister got married in Christchurch. While it was a cause of celebration for all, I was left with a bad taste in my mouth. You see, I'd booked my tickets to Milan for my first ever full menswear circuit, and she decided to get married on the first day of shows, which meant that by the time I arrived, I'd missed Burberry. While this seems fairly ridiculous in hindsight (sorry Rebeccah), such was my obsession with the brand. I fly out to Europe tomorrow for the shows, and I've gone and missed Burberry once again. The Brit brand returned to London Fashion Week after years of showing in Milan, and rest assured, they came out guns blazing.

Friday, June 7, 2013

#2303 Throwback Thursday – Prada S/S 2012

Photos: Sonny Vandevelde

Cast your mind back to that scene in Zoolander where Mugatu turns to his Derelicte show audience and delivers the unforgettable line: “I feel like I’m taking crazy pills!” So it was at Prada this afternoon, where the lady of the hour delivered a collection that was brilliant in its sheer excess – the freakier it got, the more the crowd lapped it up. Bear in mind that this is the woman who has managed to persuade fans the world over to wear bananas, monkeys, lurex and multi-clash-coloured platform-brogue-moccasin-creepers in the past two seasons alone. This time around, Miuccia Prada threw everything in the mix, including the dress-up box, Grandpa’s closet, the pro-shop and the kitchen sink.

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

#2296 Why Karen Walker should relaunch menswear


I have a long running relationship with Karen Walker the brand. Back in my university days, when I was working at Little Brother and milking the staff discount for all it was worth, I spent many a pay cheque on Karen's menswear, sold exclusively in Murray Crane's stores. I compulsively bought up every tee and sweater print she made (often in all available colourways), and obsessed over each new drop like a Supreme junkie on an early Thursday morning. The Crane/Walker collaboration didn't last long – three or so seasons – which will forever go down as one of the great clothing disappointments.  Just imagine what might have been if she'd progressed from tee shirt prints and translated those menswear-inspired womenswear pieces back into menswear.

Friday, February 17, 2012

#2125 Calvin Klein closes NYFW

Dempsey Stewart at Calvin Klein. Photos: Greg Lewis

There are only a couple of New York shows that model-watchers look to for evidence of big girls doing big things. Calvin Klein is one of them. This season, the label took it upon itself to Lisbeth Salander several of the models' hair. Some got off easy-ish, like Dempsey Stewart whose short black bob will no doubt become a calling-card the rest of the season; but others, with their shaved undercuts or asymmetrical wedges might struggle. Then again, this is fashion and if there's one thing the industry loves, it's a reinvention. After going to 20-something shows this season, one thing is certain: No designer put on a more polished, impressive or international display of womenswear than Calvin Klein. And that, my friends, draws my New York Fashion Week coverage to a close. Best of luck to everyone going on to London, Milan and Paris!

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

#2008 J Crew has a handle on this menswear game

Ryan Kennedy and Lenz von Johnston.

J Crew showed my favourite menswear collection of the week this morning, and I'll tell you why: Not only did I want to wear a huge chunk of it, but you could see just about every guy in the room thinking the same thing. Hello menswear that guys actually want to wear, it's been a while. Here in New York there seems to be a bit of a disconnect between what's shown and how guys actually dress – so much of what we've seen seems to miss the mark. A tailored jacket doesn't need a leather armband around the bicep. Colourful camo is a stretch. Fluro panels on coats might be good for an evening bicycle ride, but I don't know about everyday wear. Call me conservative, but I like my menswear with a side of realism. J Crew serves theirs up piping hot.

#2006 Karen Walker clothes the lady and the tramp


Held during the same time slot as one of New York's most highly anticipated shows, Rodarte, there's no doubt Karen Walker pulled the short straw this season. But New Zealand's favourite international designer still managed to bring in a strong crowd, including a few familiar faces: Fashion Toast's Rumi Neely sat front row, Tim Phin of Remix was a couple of seats over from hairdresser Richard Kavanagh, NO Magazine's Zara Mirkin sat alongside Vogue Australia's Meg Gray, and even Kiwi entrepreneur Derek Handley turned up to say hello.

Monday, September 12, 2011

#2002 Patrik Ervell was best in show


Patrik Ervell can be credited with two things: helping bring the club collar back into fashion, and injecting a bit of life into a lacklustre New York show season. His Spring/Summer 2012 collection was right on point. The reason for its success? They were garments that guys will actually want to wear. His suits were cut crisply with fuller lapels, his workwear pieces were attractively sturdy, and the more creative elements – colourful ink blotch shirts, floaty parkas and contrast sleeve jackets – never veered into ridiculous territories. In a season filled with over-styled, out of touch menswear collections, Ervell's was a breath of fresh air.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

#2000 Alexander Wang was so pop culture

Terry Richardson and Carine Roitfeld outside Alexander Wang.

A frenzied scene met us outside Alexander Wang this afternoon. As each tinted-windowed town car rolled up, a screaming team of pap photographers would swarm the exiting passenger. If a socialite appeared, a phalanx would form, moving slowly backwards as the guest attempted to enter the building. If it was a regular joe, the group would heave a collective sigh and recede to the trenches to wait for the next. Courtney Love caused a stir, Glee's Lea Michele had an effeminate teen in tears, but it was Alicia Keys who really got the crowd going. When her blacked out SUV arrived, she kept the photographers waiting five minutes with the doors closed. "Is it Kanye? It's gotta be Kanye," said one. "Maybe it's Pippa Middleton," piped up another. "Na-uh," cried the effeminate teen, "I just know it's Mama Madonna." Despite their predictions falling short, all seemed pleased.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

#1997 Tommy Hilfiger took colour to a whole 'nutha level



The hottest spot in New York City today was the West Side High Line at 5:30pm. The sun was blazing over the Hudson River with no buildings to filter its fire, and Tommy Hilfiger's menswear show was running late. Good thing they thought to provide refreshments for the guests, plus plenty of visual spectacle in the form of Ed Westwick (Gossip Girl's Chuck Bass), Kellan Lutz (Twilight's Emmett) and a bunch of other TV actors whose names you can't quite remember but you know they're famous all the same.

Friday, September 9, 2011

#1994 Duckie Brown adds a touch of zoot to your suit


If you're going to keep things tightly buttoned up top, you've gotta give a guy room to breathe down below, right? That's right, according to Messrs Silver and Cox, who showed a collection of restrictive suit jackets with billowing six-pleat pants at Duckie Brown this afternoon. Huge through the thigh and tapering down to break on boots, the trousers recalled those once worn by zoot-suiters, but the jackets were as skinny as Slimane-era Dior Homme. Paired with loose, untucked tee shirts, the look was at once restrictive and relaxed.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

#1990 Steven Alan stays on trend for summer

Chris Arundel and Anthon Wellsjo.

Wearability is the Steven Alan MO – tried and tested garments that you can throw on and walk out the door. It might not be the most boundary-pushing approach, but it's one that will no doubt keep loyal customers happy. After all, who can trump wearability where summer clothing is concerned? Keeping cool is no mean feat when it's blazing outside. For the warmer months, Steven Alan proposed easy basics - cotton suits, chinos, white jeans, short sleeve shirts and striped tees for the boys; and tablecloth check sundresses, shifts and colourful silk skirts for the girls. All styles we've worn before, and all styles we'll be happy to wear again. It proved (most obviously in the menswear) that all you need to do to jazz up a simple outfit is add a little stylistic flair – a rolled cuff here, a hat or tie there. Too easy.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

#1941 The Beginning Of The End – Entourage season 8, episode 1, in review

Turtle, E and Johnny Drama. Absent: Vinnie Chase and Ari Gold. Photo: HBO

The greatest moment of Entourage season seven occurs in the closing minutes of the final episode: Vinnie mouths off one too many times to the wrong person – Eminem – and gets hooked straight in the jaw. It's a sweet pay off. I've always liked Vinnie, empathised with his character and enjoyed his successes; but last series, for the first time, I began to see what it was that every girl I ever debate Entourage with seems to see: the guy errs on the side of self-involved jerkdom all too often. It ends with him in hospital, bloodied up, angry and pointing the finger at anyone who'll listen: Sasha Grey, Johnny Drama and Ari, but most of all, at E. The deus ex machina arrives in the form of a police officer holding a bag of cocaine, and it's rehab time for Mr Chase. Season eight's promo promised plenty of action for one and all – E and Sloan broken up; Ari and Mrs Ari on the brink of divorce; Johnny Drama eclipsed on his own show by hooligan comedian Andrew Dice Clay; and Vinnie's last dash attempt at the big time. If you haven't yet seen the first episode, I suggest you stop reading now.

Monday, June 27, 2011

#1903 Thom Browne took on cabaret girls and the fat cats who loved them

Photos: Sonny Vandevelde

Held inside infamous Maxim's with its dark red lighting and Art Nouveau decor, Thom Browne's show opened with the theme song from Cabaret. Two boys dressed like 1920s Oriental businessmen sat onstage at a table drinking champagne and nodding greetings to guests as they arrived. The designer's theme du jour? The types of fat cats who've historically spent a lot of money on liquor and fast women at such establishments – and what a brilliantly sleazy bunch they were.

#1903 Paul Smith was an incredibly hot show

Photos: Sonny Vandevelde

Serving free ice creams outside your show is a bloody good call, especially when the ice cream is coconut flavoured and the most delicious tasting cold thing imaginable. Another great call: colour-blocked garments. Not looks, but actual pieces split horizontally across the middle, like an orange/navy sweater or a pair of pants with a little navy and a little petrol blue. That said, when your show venue is a former convent with no air conditioning and hot to the point where your ankles start sweating, showing anything other than board shorts and tee shirts becomes something of an incomprehensible endeavour. The coats and blazers at Paul Smith might have looked smart, but leather sleeves in this heat? Forget about it.

#1902 Lanvin fed and watered us then showed some very cool colourful suits

Photos: Sonny Vandevelde

I say this every season, but Lanvin sure knows how to treat a final-day-of-fashion-week audience: it’s a simple formula that includes coffee, tea, water and sweet treats – today’s were donuts and giant cookies that the assembled masses picked at daintily on paper plates (I inhaled mine – as a New Zealander, my ability to not shove food in my mouth is similar to that of an elephant’s). Our setting was the magnificent Bourse de Commerce, a building matched only in stature and light by the Grand Palais – think: enormous, round, frescoed and glass-domed with arches lining the entranceways. Perfect site for a powerful presentation, which is exactly what Lanvin delivered.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

#1901 Raf Simons went signature and delivered a classic

Photos: Sonny Vandevelde

Models appearing on escalators is a bit of a Raf Simons show signature, though last time it happened was a full seven years ago here in Paris. Tonight he did it again, at the beautiful-yet-imposing Credit Lyonnais headquarters in the city’s second arrondisement. After last season’s financial scare – the designer parted ways with his manufacturing partner and cancelled all buyer appointments just days before the collection was presented – a return to past favourites probably seemed like a logical plan of attack. And what better place to present them than at a European institution which had once suffered its own financial woes – and come back on top.

#1899 Maison Martin Margiela offers its take on the Olympic uniform

Photos: HommeModel

There wasn’t a single garment at Maison Martin Margiela’s show today that didn’t have at least one little quirk or design peculiarity. The first was a fairly ordinary looking suit jacket, which when examined closely revealed a pen sticking out of an extra jetted compartment underneath the breast pocket. A bright red poncho might have been made from repurposed Adidas track pants, and a tuxedo jacket had mirrored buttons that glinted in the light. The presentation began with a film featuring the models walking very slowly towards the camera. As each one passed, the pace increased a fraction, until finally they were sprinting, the clothes a mere blur on screen.

#1898 Kenzo took vacation dressing to a whole 'nother level

Photos: HommeModel

The invitation said it all: it was an inflatable globe with a map of Hawaii on one side and a scene depicting a tiger stalking some tropical fish on the other. An origami boat sat on each seat. Beach Boys heralded the start of the show, and the Russian model Matvey Lykov walked out in an island print blazer with full-legged white pants and sandals – a metaphorical take on vacation dressing this was not. Made up like matinee idols with finger curls and bronzed cheekbones, the boys wore every conceivable summer cliché – primary blues and yellows, magentas and cyans, floral print suits, chambray, shorts, polka dots and nautical stripes.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

#1896 Kris van Assche took on the teddy boys and won


Kris van Assche is nothing if he’s not consistent. The Belgian designer’s collections explore a similar proportion and colour palette each season, and his shows are executed precisely without excess fanfare or runway gimmick. For spring/summer 2012, van Assche looked to the teddy boys for inspiration, and found it in their polo shirt-with-suit combos, pork pie hats and creeper boots. It was insouciant summer suiting, all floppy jersey and three quarter length drop crotch pants, and it looked comfortable as hell.