Love how much a departure this is from both their styles.
Love how much a departure this is from both their styles.
I took an intensive haute couture sewing and patternmaking class last fall, taught by a tiny old seamstress we called Signora. We sat at workstations in serried rows for hours at a time while she paced about the room, examining our work and holding forth on the subject du jour. It was fantastic. Very rigorous, but just what I wanted.
As the Resident Foreigners, my friend Astrid and I were given many lectures on why traditional Italian tailoring enjoys the reputation it has (and let me tell you, there is WORK that goes in to properly tailoring something!) A constant refrain from Signora was “Rifiniture!” The finishing touches. She showed us the extra steps that made a hand-made garment into a work of fine craftsmanship. It’s all about the little thoughts that make a garment truly special.
That’s why I’m particularly drawn to vintage tailoring, such as with the suit above. The perfect seam on the waist and the buttons at the back are beautiful touches, showing that the garment was thoughtfully constructed. I’m working on building a skeleton wardrobe right now, of perfect base pieces, and it is these careful details that I’m looking out for, such as a well-made hem or something to make the piece more beautiful and unique. I think I might be done with fast fashion, except for pops of trendiness. Quality and thoughtfulness are becoming more and more important to me. How do you feel about this?
I love, love, love this blouse from Norwegian Wood‘s shop. I’m love with unusual pieces based off coat details, and so the trench-coat-like box pleat on the back of this blouse is really appealing to me. The sheer panel is also lovely. It’s a perfect spring blouse– though sadly it’s October, and out my window I can only see grey skies and rain. Stupid seasonal changes. Pah.
Also, how gorgeous is her model? New girl-crush.
[Norwegian Wood Trench blouse, $75]
Anyone who knows me knows the recipe for appealing to my aesthetic: dark, preferably some sort of urban dystopia, with good lashings of dress-up and make-believe. Tattered finery and all that. Throw in carnival references and freaks of any kind, and you’ve made me a very happy girl.
This is why I was so pleased to come across Steven Meisel’s Neverland editorial in an old issue of Vogue Italia I found while clearing out the junk that’s accumulated in my room over the past 10 years. It’s such a great combination of carny-freak and playing dress-up. I love the grimy setting, I love the colour palette, I love the fact that in a weird way it’s almost believable. A couple of the clown suits aside, I wouldn’t be overly surprised to stumble across a colony of people playing circus make-believe in a junkyard. I could even see myself doing it, with the right group of friends.
(ok, this picture I’m less pleased by… unsure if it’s because I’m irrationally irritated by his juggling, or by the preciousness of his tiny useless scarf.)
I love everything in this photo… the mask, the blouse, the tights. I’d wear them all in a heartbeat. (With a skirt, obvi.)
Ren-Faire warrior bard? This is giving me serious flashbacks to one of my favourite fantasy series from when I was a nerdy young thing.
The fact is, every time I look at this editorial I get the phrase “Lost Boys” stuck in my head while I look for a way to describe it. I think this shoot is a great modern take on the theme.
Of COURSE they have a drum.
I imagine her as the ice-princessy girl who hardly ever speaks, but who everyone is a little bit in love with.
Anyhow, i’m off to pile on costume jewelry and scour my closet for beautiful falling-apart things. Or maybe I’ll just curl up and daydream about fairytales. Regardless, I love this display of the magic and weirdness that can be found in ugly little corners of the world.
And boy, has a lot changed. In the past few months there was a lot of introspection, followed by a whirlwind decision to up and quit my job, spend a month packing up my life in the States and saying goodbye to friends, and then ending up back home in Turin, Italy. So, here I am, by way of a couple pit stops in Madagascar, the Italian Alps and Istanbul. I’m not here permanently by any means. My mother and I both object rather fervently to the thought that I will be one of those adult children that just… lives at home. And scenic though Torino is, I think I’d be better living elsewhere in the long run. But I suddenly decided I wanted to work in Fashion Marketing, despite my oh-so-relevant background in law by way of Russian literature, and so I needed to shake things up. yes, yes, New York is a natural choice for the field, but by being in Turin (and close to Milan), I get to strengthen my Italian and milk the contacts I have in Italy. I’m applying to schools and jobs right now throughout Europe and the US, and I couldn’t be more excited about the things ahead of me.
The girls I work with are occasionally bemused by my taste in day-to-day footwear. Most of the time I’ll stick to ballet flats or classic pumps, but then on occasion I’ll bust out something tall and architectural that propels me well over 6 feet. I don’t think they realise that the craziest of the shoes I own is quite staid when compared to any single one of these beauties made by Chau Har Lee for her graduate collection last year.
Lee won loads of awards for her collection and is currently working at Marloes Ten Bhömer, which seems to me to be a perfect fit. I’m dying to see what comes from her next. I’d be happy to have created something along these lines as a sculpture alone, so to have it be functional is a dream!
My hair is curly, and I look like a pin-head with short hair but if I could pull it off, I’d march straight to the hairdresser right now and demand a replica of one of these sleek Vidal Sassoon cuts. I’ve lusted after them for years. The first time I chopped my hair short, I was sure that I would magically be transformed into one of these androgynous Sixties gamines. Tragically, I hadn’t factored in being twelve, with a face-full of braces and rower’s shoulders. I looked androgynous all right, but not in any good way. I lacked the requisite frailty to pull off the look.
Every couple of years, I’d happen across a picture of Sassoon at work and feel the familiar compulsion to either pick up the scissors myself (end result: tears and strange short spots in hard-to-reach areas) or to hightail it to the local hairdresser (result: strange mushroom crop). I’ve learned my lesson over the past few years and am rocking the long sexy boho wavy thing. Still, looking at these pictures and these exquisite cuts, I’m feeling a sudden urge to start scrutinizing my face shape. Maybe something subtle will have changed in my bone structure and hair texture to allow me to chop it off into a sexy angular crop? Maybe? This time around? Pretty please?
I bought the picture above at some holiday fair as a Christmas present for my stepfather. He likes the sea, art and pretty girls, so I figured it would be a good match. The picture was duly wrapped, presented, appreciated. Pretty girls + the sun were a win yet again. Done.
For some reason, though, I held on to the photographer’s business card, and kept on returning to his site to look at the shots. There’s something about the dreamy quality of these weathered Polaroids that brings up instant thoughts of half-destroyed vintage magazines and slow-motion summer afternoons. On his website, the shots are described as photographer Matt Schwartz’ “version of the pin-up girl,” and I can’t agree more. Their lazy sensuality is wonderfully captured on film in a sort of Endless Summer. I’d give anything to know the story behind all these shots.