Thursday, May 28, 2009

"The peacock preened itself on the lawn..."

About a year and 3/4 ago, I discovered Preen. There is a great chance you haven't heard of it - Despite it's 10 year age and general awesomeness, it hasn't quite knocked on haute couture's door (and subsequently, hasn't become a common name)...until recently.
Specifically, I really, really like their take on 'clothing cut outs'. So many designers do it wrong in my opinion; slashing what looks like a lion attack into a shirt or tearing holes where one sh
ouldn't be exposing skin. Preen more often than not uses a light sheer material (I'm full-out guessing a marquisette kind of fabric?) to underlay the feminine cuts into the dress, adding just a touch of softness and mystery to an otherwise, sexual piece. Though the raunchy-line is brushed up against from time to time, they focus on emphasizing silhouettes rather than showing cleav and badonkadonk. [I will soon post pictures of what I'm talking about, they really, really do it well!] The designers are Justin Thornton and Thea Bregazzi; they both (I'm pretty sure both) hail from Great Britain and it's only been in the last two years that they've touched the western continents. I find it bewildering that these two started their design resume by, in a way, 'recycling' clothing; they made an effort to reconstruct and deconstruct old and new garments in their early years. As much as I find this rather wonderful, it's neat to see how they've grown over the past decade and come to own and manage gaggles of stores internationally. I have to say, there has always been something that I have just adored about the name. I love the definitions I've found and as a result, how much more wicked the name gets...

(of animals, esp. birds) to trim or dress (feathers) with the beak or tongue: The peacock preened itself on the lawn.
b) to dress (oneself) carefully or smartly; primp: The king preened himself in his elaborate ceremonial robes.
c) to take pride or satisfaction in oneself; gloat: He preened himself on having been graduated with honors.

From the clean lines and classic styles they create, Bregazzi and Thornton -who are a real-life couple! aw!- keep chic up-to-date. What I mean by that is, they manage to never let blacks, whites, creams, and beiges get old or matronly. Progressively getting more and more sophisticated, there is always a stunning and ageless look that repeatedly saves each piece from, in my opinion, ever going out of date! As much as I love colour blocking and having an exciting palette in my closet, my ultimate love and trust belongs to the neutrals. They are always safe -not boring!- safe and classy: that's my favourite part, the class. Wearing fitted, high waisted, black pencil skirts paired with cream or white blouses tucked in 'just-so', is what unconsciously but, automatically pops into my head when considering prestige. I can't help it! It's smart.
These two are way cool and spend literally 24/7 with each other: planning, designing, negotiating and claim to never fight. I think that is beyond the coolest thing. Being able to work sanely with the love of your life? Awesome. (Sidenote: I'll quickly mention that during New York Fashion week, Justin shipped out to NYC to cover them for the first time overseas last year whilst Thea stayed on the homestead to have their baby! That's hardcore. Best part for me is that he is quoted saying - "It's such a strange feeling to know this will be the first show ever without Thea there on that day."= blissfully gliding over the fact he isn't going to be present for the birth of his first child and that it's apparently more significant for him to be alone at a fashion show! Hilarious.) Last year, they also launched "Preen Line", an extension of their title narrowing in on their more rock-chic looks....I'm nottt as big of a fan, but they seem really excited about it! So, I'll refrain from further judgment until the next collection! I love that with the flagship collection, I am drawn to the line's neutral colours and femine angles, but always end up falling in love with one of their surprise pieces; This year for me it is their cut-out, kind-of persimmon orange, token dress here and have always loved their sweetheart rose sundress that dates back to Spring 2006. Always full of surprises Thea and Justin, sneaky rascals.

At some point, I'll definitely be highlighting their menswear line, cause it's sickkkk.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Something old, something (re)new(ed), something borrowed,

Mixing the wonderfulness of accessories and all things pretty with that of environmental consciousness. ...Without having to weave purses of eucalyptus leaves or fashion recycled bottle caps for rings, I've sorta found you truly can enjoy sparkley things and oo-la-la-ness in earth conserving ways ~ I am not a poser and will not pretend I do enough for the environment. However, I like the world. And recently, I have been realizing I should show it I like it...a lot more than I have been; in the words of Diana Ross, love is give and take. At this wicked site, it gives you a handful of really great ideas of how to tackle the whole being-pretty-and-smart deal. Reuse, reuse, reuse. Vintage: I especially enjoy the idea of finding new old-finds or remodeling an item you already have and challenging yourself into using it in a different way. Par exemple! I revamped an old riding jacket I had from my yesteryear by buying a mere 6 gold ornated buttons....I replaced the worn silver clips with these and wa-BAm, it genuinely looked new. (Another joy of mine, finding something you forgot was yours: yessssss.)

This is Planet Green: I regularly look at this offers simple suggestions and new "takes" on how to approach a suffering world and make little (or big) changes. They partner with NGO's to develop a web of communication through this common theme of environmental maintenance....What I really appreciate is their realism and very 'everyday' sort of reflections, nothing too unattainable. Just "motivating individuals to take action when it comes to improving the environmental status of our planet."

I am a hoarder. I hoard. I have also been (unfairly) called a pack rat. I can't give things away and it's something I'm working on. I applaud you who can. I always hold the dim, but blithe prospect that a certain questionable item will, at some point, become cute again. No matter what anyone says, fashion is cyclic. What once was fashionable, has the undeniable possibility of making a resurgence (despite the formidable qualities windbreakers, banana clips and shoulder padding currently have in your eyes, they will one day join the 'vintage-cute' circles, not yet, definitely not yet, but one day.). Hence my fear of giving something away that may once again be fabulous! (Joy #311: proclaiming something is vintage when really, it doesn't quite make the old-enough mark - still stuck in the Thrift store purgatory - but it's justified by it's cuteness.) As I'm always unwelcomely reminded by my boyfriend in any moment of shopping weakness or quotidian conversation, it's a "recession", I am offended. My retort being, "Precisely why I must keep my old clothes and invest in my longterm future by buying new pieces." That's what I call planning ahead. Recession-shmesession.

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Frida Safari

like clothes. A lot. While I mostly enjoy coming up with creations compiled of thrift store finds and cheap pearls, I have a very real and romantic love for high fashion.Gucci's Spring/Summer 2009 Collection this year has me. (Well, technically last year if you count in designer years.) (It technically was first born a year ago, early June - If you're not ahead, you're behind I guess!) Not always being a fan of Gucci, I was absolutely stunned. Considering that it was the RTW line, this may explain my attraction. I want to wear every piece. ~ I think Gucci struggled during the "reign" of Alessandra Facchinetti who produced far too many metallics for anyone's health and simply lacked the 'oomph' factor Tom Ford had previously propagated. On the bright side, along came Frida Giannini! Personally, she has recently grown on me...however, she is, to this day, still fighting for the props she deserves. This being said, she has been earning her name in a post-Ford world since gaining the Creative Director position at Gucci circa 2005 (again, in designer years, time is warped and people are snooty. It takes a l-o-n-g mother time to be even slightly appreciated, and you better produce your collections 8 years in advance!). Needless to say, when the Spring/Summer Collection was released, my heart shuttered: I love everything about it - and it has been a while since I have truly loved and enjoyed something from Gucci. The bright, exotic colours and the safari-esk backbone to the line have such a fun result on the entire "semblance" of the show. J'adore!
Have a good day!
^ Ps: I love Lily Donaldson.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

In Trees.

Up in Trees....

I was scrummaging through our crawlspace a few years ago and found an old riding belt my dad used to wear..complete with worn in edges and old western stiching detail. I probably wear it far more often than one consciously should. If you can get your hands on a solid belt like this, lighter shades of brown or tan are more flexible, you can pair it with next to anything. Around waists or hips, it gives a warm country-chic look that completes so many outfits....

jeans | cosablanca
belt | vintage
leather jacket | rw & co.
flats | spring
scarf | vintage
blue jacket |
glasses | vogue

Two Girls.

The day according to Richelle and Jerrica...

One day two young girls found themselves in an enchanted fortress. It housed glowing chandeliers and endless corridors. They explored and considered the countless and undoubtedly wonderful events that had taken place there for centuries before their arrival. Out the age-beaten, frosted glass and over the weakened wood sill, hid a (seemingly) divinely created and eerily appealing garden. Looking on with amazement, they let themselves become spellbound by the intricate details on each bannister post, each faded marble step and every waft of bewitching air....

jeans | cosablanca
belt | vintage
leather jacket | rw & Co.
flats | spring
scarf | vintage

No matter what I say in this first post, I'll sound lame...a story seemed less intimidating.... : )