January 24, 2012 - 11:30 pm
Last week, at the Toronto showroom HQ of one of my favourite New York-born brands, I started my day with breakfast at Michael Kors. What. A. Treat. At around 9 a.m., over orange juice, I perused collections for the upcoming seasons and here’s the forecast fashion sleuths: Summer 2012 plans to be tie-dye heaven (read: maxi dress that I need right now, and wow-worthy handbags with groovy colourful prints) and Pre-Fall 2012 selects are a woolly wonderland (read: supple shearling and mohair, mohair and more fabulous mohair). With temps hitting -8C, it was a welcome distraction from the frigid cold outside and a reminder that spring–and (gasp) even summer–is truly on the way.
And even nicer, at the end of what seemed like stepping right into a brief island vacation (I’ve got quite the imagination, readers) I received this lovely gift: a Michael Michael Kors keychain, with a leather mini cream-coloured picture holder. Totally key-chic. I’ve dubbed it my Big Girl Keychain, this beauty is now a grown-up friend to my Columbia University keychain (yes, the one that’s cleverly designed to also open bottles). Now it has a pret-a-porter drinking partner.
photos: (c) Glynnis Mapp, FashionTK.com
June 20, 2010 - 5:22 am
I’m in New York at the moment, spending the summer here and taking in the city’s humid hustle. It’s taken me a little while to settle in, get comfy and start writing on my blog again (whoops!). Apologies to my readers (of which surely number in the ones) for my e-pause.
New York is a city that virtually needs no introduction. We know it so well as the backdrop for our favourite movies and also as the founding city of some of our beloved all-American fashion brands: Michael Kors, Calvin Klein, Marc Jacobs, Alexander Wang, Donna Karan, Ralph Lauren–where else? New York, baby.
Compared to Paris, which romances you from the time you exit the Charles de Gaulle airport and hop on the RER towards the city–a shy introduction with suburb graffiti, then a come-hither cognac-like finish with old architecture, pain au chocolat, the tour d’Eiffel, French rolling “r’s”which are mostly alluring because of the men and women that use them–New York also aims for a healthy introduction, but approaches its wooing a little differently, even reluctantly.
First, it’s hot. New York is wonderfully gritty and sweaty (this hot June promises to follow with a sweltering July and August) and sometimes a little rude. New York manifests itself its smells, sounds and tastes: the delicious corner deli’s, the yellow cabs, the whiny police sirens, fashion that is completely and wonderfully classic and still very DIY, American extended “o’s” (“store” sounds like “stoar”) and elongated “a’s” (“call” sounds like “caul”).
Dare I quote lyrics from the song du jour by rapper Jay-Z and singer-pianist Alicia Keys: New York is definitely a concrete jungle where dreams are made of. It’s true, there’s simply nothing you can’t do. Including creating a fashion identity for yourself out of thin air.
Case in point: among my first encounters in the city was with Whitney Port, known best from MTV shows The Hills and The City. As per my affinity for (free) vodka and overpriced moody bars, we chatted briefly about her clothing line Whitney Eve at a Svedka promo party at Abe and Arthur’s, a swank resto in the meatpacking district. Surprisingly, the star of The City, is not a star at all. Many New Yorkers (especially those from the fashion camp) aren’t huge fans. I learned this after recounting the run-in to my fashion friends who were simply appalled that I was the least bit excited about meeting her because in their words (and I’m quoting verbatim here), “Nobody takes her seriously.” Ouch. Reality TV is a weird thing. It’s got that “what’s her name again?” quality while simultaneously offering (temporary) clout and credibility.Whatever, I still like Whitney Port–sue me.
But rubbing elbows with celebrities wasn’t all I did in the city last week. I took some time to be a little more pretentious and skipped through the MOMA to give my judicious opinion on modern art. I came back with a cache of my own interpretive art projects, which I plan on starting as soon as possible (selling a gigantic blue-painted canvas would definitely pay a few bills). But first, a survey of the latest and greatest in fashion is mandatory.
Already, I’ve scoped out a few new designers and fresh faces, including Eliza Starbuck who recently launched her own fashion line, Bright Young Things at hot boutique Maryam Nassir Zadeh (and had a baby five months ago and is miraculously svelte). She first wowed press from the New York Times Magazine, Glamour and others for her 365 wear-a-thon challenge called The Uniform Project. The experiment was to wear one little black dress (aptly designed by Starbuck herself) everyday to raise money for charity.
Colour me impressed. New York, I officially love you (but I love Paris too). More pictures of the city’s lights and delights–and fashion–to come.
photos: Glynnis Mapp
October 29, 2009 - 6:52 pm
Fashion dandies and dandettes hit the streets during LG Fashion Week S/S 2010 to show us how to work catwalk trends in real time. And the looks? Ankle boots, layers and leggings, soft furs, hand-me-down leather clutches, totes and an array of statement baubles wrapped in closet staple outerwear: trenches, bombers, and double breasted jackets. From David Dixon to Nada, Canadian labels were the statement makers on and off the runway.
photos by: Glynnis Mapp
September 25, 2009 - 2:53 am
Here are a handful of designers that knocked us off our proverbial stocking feet:
On his Marc
Marc Jacobs let loose in a flurry of frills and bustles
for his Spring show, dismissing the model-off-duty
, glam-rock persona fashion has adopted these days and instead called on more refined muses
. He told Nicole Phelps of Style.com
that “if last season was a trip back in time to the eighties, this was a trip to the theater, the ballet, the opera.” And from Marc’s lips to our fashion eyes, it was true: after-five dresses
à la “The King and I,” porcelain-faced models
, Ottoman-era slippers
and ballet-style chignons,
with a dash of American sportswear (silken sports bras, fanny-packs and jogging tights) in the mix as well. Critics left pleased with our North American l’enfant terrible
, refreshed by his devil-may-care ‘tude
to last season’s dark aura.
A designer who is quite familiar with the ups and downs of the industry, Isaac Mizrahi knows that the show must go on–and does he ever know how to put on a show! He dazzled with his Sept. 17 tent show and Broadway style display complete with rain machine and a winding staircase that even Gene Kelly himself would approve of. The collection was presented with help from famous model faces, including of-the-moment runway muse Tao Okamoto. Isaac Mizrahi’s Spring cache offered chic patent oxfords in creme, caramel and black; tailored blazers, showman Boater hats and suitcases. This gender-bending show had Big City written all over it. Encore!
Distressed leathers, twills and plaid patterns ripped to shreds–California girls Kate and Laura Mulleavy of Rodarte brought out the textile talent we’ve come to crave: gorgeous knit stitching, prints and a collage of techniques that are always right on the money. The Mulleavy sisters remind us yet again why they received a 2009 CFDA award their knack for damaging cherished fabrics and combining them in spectacular ways. This Spring, the siblings were darkly inspired by the singed California terrain and Rodarte envisioned a fashion phoenix: a woman scorned by her landscape. She pieces together her burned–yet beautiful–clothes and stomps triumphantly (thanks to equally stripped statement shoes by Nicholas Kirkwood) down the runway. Scarlett O’Hara, eat your heart out.
So Sui Me
shows are always a refreshing change from the dark and brooding model stomps. The recent CFDA Lifetime Achievement Award
winner knows how put the fun back in to fashion with happy smiling models, bold prints and patterns. Ringmaster Sui gave a whimsical circus-inspired collection this Spring. A nod to the flower child’s love of the 1960s Pop-era
welcomed a variety of playful dresses
in equally dallying flower prints
, not to mention several bowl haircuts
(many models sported faux
blunt cut bangs if they didn’t already have them). Sui’s collection was fanciful and free
: evidence of a designer flying high on success–and deservingly so!
August 6, 2009 - 6:10 pm
Marc Jacobs closes summer with an eye-opening sale
Denim cutoffs, resin bangles, graphic T-shirts–oh my!
After a frugal summer of saving for that special Fall purchase, Marc Jacobs does it again by stealing our hearts away with staples sure to keep your closet stocked ’til next year’s heat wave.
MJ is practically giving away end of season merchandise!
Editor lusts already include: skinny jeans at $78 (swoon), classic take-anywhere-totes for a cool $20 and a snake head bracelet at just $5. That’s less than a Starbucks grande chai, folks.
FashionTK is heading to the nearest Marc Jacobs store to purchase these glorious braderie items. View items online and get that credit card ready for a sale swipe!