April Flowers Bring May Showers, But By June Everything Should Be Coming Up Roses Again

Posted: May 16th, 2012 | Author: | Filed under: fashion | Tags: , , , ,

Just in time for graduation, the ASOS Salon collection of dresses has arrived, and they are truly exquisite.  Most dresses are around $200, so they’re not your usual fast fashion bargain, but are not outrageous for the quality of workmanship and detail.  ASOS also has going for it the fact that it is not yet a big U.S. presence, so chances are if you buy one of these dresses for yourself or your daughter for graduation, you’re not likely to run into anyone else wearing the same dress.  And yes, although it is a small collection, it includes a variety of dresses some suitable for a teenage girl, others quite appropriate for her mother.  They are so precious that I truly don’t know how to begin to choose.

Three Dresses For The Graduating Teen

1. ASOS SALON Pretty Dress in Floral Appliqué $208.74

 

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With This Springs Jackets What Is Old Is New Again

Posted: May 10th, 2012 | Author: | Filed under: fashion | Tags: , , , ,

We’ve discussed shoes, printed jeans and floral dresses, but the other key item this season — the one that’s almost the easiest to wear — is the floral print jacket.  Personally, I’m a fan of the light weight bomber jacket.  There is also the cousin style of the pseudo letterman jacket, but the idea is pretty consistent either way.  And if you ask me, they’re beyond cute.  They are a little young looking, but I think that designers have tweaked the style to come up with jackets that really anyone can wear.

Sportmax Stefy Floral Print Jacket $756.00

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Head To J. Crew For A Piece Of The Fashion World’s Darling – Joseph Altuzarra

Posted: May 4th, 2012 | Author: | Filed under: fashion | Tags: , , , , , ,

It turns out that the leaked collaboration between Manolo Blahnik and J Crew which I posted about a month and a half ago is indeed too good to be true.  And Blahnik’s denials of any knowledge of any collaboration may not have been a reflection of his lack of awareness of what’s going on with his brand, but of the fact that there was indeed no finalized agreement on a collaboration.  Blahnik did design shoes to go with the J Crew Fall 2012 collection, but reports now say that they were simply one offs for the runway show.

The Joseph Altuzarra collaboration, however, did deliver, and just as Altuzarra seems to be hitting his stride as a designer.  Sadly, as with the theoretical Manolo Blahnik collection, and unlike the fast fashion retailers, J Crew is not out to offer a bargain.  It never really was anyway, it’s not fast fashion, so there’s no reason to start now.  Still, I was somehow taken aback and disappointed when I saw the prices of the Joseph Altuzarra for J Crew pieces.  My initial response to the collection was one of disappointment.  While the collection does fit seamlessly within J Crew’s aesthetic, most of the items do not particularly stand out from the store’s general offerings.  They are, for the most part, fairly simple and basic pieces for sale at rather high prices.  Yes, the prices are less than “designer” prices and on par with the pricing of other well made name brand apparel, but they’re high enough to make me think twice about buying anything.  The collection is growing on me.  It was inspired by the kind of sexy French aesthetic embodied by Bridgitte Bardot, which is an apt description and adds a little je ne sai quoi, but meh …

 

1 Sabrina Dress $228    2. Odette Blouse $175 (a cute enough top, but side view suggests you have to be a twig to get away with it)

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Peplum Power … Give Your Skirt Wings

Posted: May 2nd, 2012 | Author: | Filed under: fashion | Tags: , , , , , , ,

If fall’s most mystifying trend was the mullet dress, spring offers an equally mystifying take on the idea.  For spring it’s all about the peplum skirt.  This is one of those trends that I am skeptical I will ever be able to get on board with.  I am usually one to buy into just about any and every trend.  I believe firmly in the concept so eloquently played out on Leandra Medine’s blog The Man Repeller, that women dress not for men, but largely for themselves and each other, and there is an enormous amount of pleasure to be gotten from indulging in the most preposterous of trends no matter how ugly and inexplicable men might find them.  When I think about fashion and getting dress, it aspires at its best to art, not to a sales pitch for my sexuality.  But a girl’s got to draw the line somewhere, and the peplum may be one of the most horrid design elements I have ever seen.

The peplum skirt was certainly a presence on the spring runways…

whether at Jason Wu

   

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Dress It Up, Call It What You Will, It’s Still Marc Jacobs

Posted: April 30th, 2012 | Author: | Filed under: fashion | Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Isn’t it kind of intriguing how a designer can design multiple collections simultaneously?  It is one thing to create nice clothes.  It is altogether another talent to be able to distill the essence of a design house, in the absence of the founding visionary, and to design consistently with the feeling and aesthetic of the house, and at the same time completely shift gears and create a distinct vision for your namesake collection which is utterly separate.

In this context, Marc Jacobs’ relationship with Louis Vuitton is somewhat unusual.  Although Louis Vuitton had long since established itself in the world of luggage and leather goods, Marc Jacobs was Artistic Director for the first ready-to-wear collection.  So there is, in essence, no Louis Vuitton ready-to-wear style separate from Jacobs.  Yet somehow, over the years, he has managed to weave a fairly distinctive look for the brand.  Sometimes it is more distinct from the collection he puts out under his namesake label, sometimes less so.  Looking ahead to Fall 2012 I’m having an awfully hard time telling the two apart.  To a great extent it may have to do with styling.  Styling plays a not insignificant role in giving an identity to a collection.  But, however you look at it, I find the choices that Jacobs made in presenting these collections surprising.

Louis Vuitton Fall 2012

  
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