"A couturier must be an architect for design, a sculptor for shape, a painter for color, a musician for harmony, and a philosopher for temperance." ~ Cristobal Balenciaga

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Green With Envy

via: The Eco Market

Hello Dear Readers,

My Valentine's Day post was so much fun, I've decided to follow suit and dedicate this post to the colour green, in honour of St. Patrick's Day!  I don't know about you, but my family always celebrates St. Patrick's Day...we're Irish, what can I say?

The above photo is what might first come to mind when you think of "green fashion"...ethical, ecological, earthy.  Now don't get me wrong, I love eco-friendly, sustainable fashion!  But the following photos are my initial thoughts when I mix the words "green" and "fashion:"

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Links à la Mode: The IFB Weekly Roundup

I have to post this quickly before I wake up and realize it's all a dream!  My last post was chosen as part of Independent Fashion Bloggers Links à la Mode this week!  Thank you so much IFB!  Please be sure to visit all of the other rounded up blogs, reposted below!  Also, consider taking Vahni's advice when visiting and commenting on blogs and "check out the blog of the person who commented above you" - such a good idea!

Making it Your Own

Edited by Vahni of Grit & Glamour

Wow...I'm a Links à la Mode editor...can you believe it?! So thrilled to have the opportunity to discover new blogs and compelling posts to share with all of you. That said, give me two minutes in the pulpit, and my "better blog" sermon starts welling up, totally involuntarily. So allow me a moment to share what I am looking for when I review submissions. It's pretty simple: Be creative and original, tie your post into beauty or fashion, use proper grammar and punctuation (spellcheck and proofread before publishing), and credit your photo sources. Always.

And on to the list...bloggers were in deep thought this week, pondering ethical fashion and feminism, male gaze and Marthettes. But in case you need to escape the heavy stuff, there is: denim! Happy reading, and as you peruse and comment on this week's posts, why stop there? For every comment you leave, why not check out the blog of the person who commented above you and comment there too? It's a great way to expand your mind—and your readership.

Links à la Mode: March 10th

  • ALinetoZ: An Open Letter to High-Waisted Jeans
  • Arash Mazinani: How ethical are you when it comes to fashion? A look at the hypocrisy often involved in being ethical in fashion.
  • Beyond Fabric: Men's daily essentials—inside one man's bag holdall.
  • Corinne Monique: Cellissimo: a music-meets-fashion photoshoot inspired by high fashion ad campaigns.
  • Designed By Ann: Reading glasses are suddenly fashionable—so here are makeup tips for girls who wear glasses.
  • Free Honey: On moving to wordress.org: 5 must-know tips for new bloggers.
  • Fishmonkey: On The Man Repeller, the male gaze, and its role in shaping fashion choices.
  • Holier than Now: Spring's Most Beautiful Lace Looks—5 Ways for < $50
  • In Her Stilettos: How to organize your jewelry while traveling—cheaply and stylishly.
  • Made-to-Travel: Asos Africa—the incredible ethical makers of this gorgeous line—oh! and it's on sale!
  • Melina Bee: Life and style tips inspired by Sophia Loren.
  • Obsessive Coolness: On the relationship—or surprising lack thereof—between talent and success in fashion blogging.
  • Oranges And Apples: Thoughts on Marthettes, blogging about 'feminine' stuff, and perfection.
  • Pretty Shiny Sparkly: A chic and easy way to wear the double denim trend.
  • Sidewalk Chic: Six ways to showcase accessories in outfit photos.
  • Sugar and Spice: Natalie Portman is effortlessly eco-chic at an Oscars after-party—in an inexpensive dress that hits H&M next month.
  • Trés Awesome: The weather may be crappy but that didn't stop people from being out and about with their bright and beautiful umbrellas.
  • Try It On Me: The resurgence of the denim shirt—not just for cowboys!

Shopbop Jeans: Citizen's, Seven's, Juicy, Joe's, Hudsons, Paige, James Jeans, Vince, True Religion, J Brand, & Siwy

Saturday, March 5, 2011


Dear Readers,

It's a rainy night here in Toronto, and I hope it's a sign that Spring is finally on the way because one of the best things about warmer weather, for me anyway, is being able to go on an outdoor photoshoot expedition :)  It's so entertaining to come up with interesting new locations to set my designs against and just have fun with the camera.  Also, it seems much easier for me to find a good spot outdoors rather than indoors, and the pictures almost always turn out better too.

My sister, Kathleen, whom you have met before in this blog, is one of my favourite models and, lets face it, is also the most readily available model who is willing to be coaxed into doing a photoshoot ;)  She is a gorgeous girl and lovely cellist.  Last Spring, for her graduating Master of Music Cello Recital, we went forth into the brisk Spring air to take some photos, which I later used to make her recital posters, invitations, and programs from.  I was inspired by the Chanel and Dior Spring/Summer 2010 ad campaigns and used them as guides for art direction and styling ideas.

Here are the original ads.  I love the absence of bright colours.  Everything, even the black, is pale and muted, almost unnaturally so.  In the Chanel ads, the stark contrast of black and white is strangely unified, blended by the diffused light.  The Dior ads (from back in the John Galliano days, pre-ruined reputation & probable Ricardo Tisci at Dior / Haider Ackermann at Givenchy takeover, which I'm sure I will have something to say about in the near future, after the dust settles) really play up light and dark by using the blinds to create interesting shadows.  I also love the use of hard architectural structures (doorways, stairs, walls) in both ads and how they simultaneously contrast with and complement the garments, suggesting a time, place, and story.