Nov 9, 2009

6 Womenswear Trends to Put Away Now

top: monogrammed trophy bags, cosmetic enhancements, red soles
bottom: indigo skinny jeans and tan/brown boots, overdyed sprayed on denim with gold designer detailing on the pockets (Jordache 1970s), the draped cardigan (ladies, it looks like a housecoat)

Quote of the Week - Bill Blass

When in doubt, wear red.

Vintage Jaeger


Nov 8, 2009

West German Pottery

my stuff

I'm not sure which piece was my first. I've bought, sold and traded West German Pottery off and on for about ten years now. Within the past three years I've noticed it's becoming more and more difficult to find when I'm out thrifting. Apparently, West German Pottery is a hot commodity now - don't call it Fat Lava because that's a glaze and not all West German Pottery has this type of glaze.

How choked was I when I popped into the local Aritzia store to burn all the Ugg boots (joking obviously) and counted 14 pieces of West German Pottery in various sizes on shelving throughout the store? I thought perhaps Mr. Hill had stashed his personal collection in the store, however, when I went in to another Aritzia - surprise another 14 pieces on display! If only the shoplifters knew that the pottery would retain its value longer than the pair of Nudies they just shoved down their pants.

So now when I'm out thrifting not only do I have to know each of the vintage pickers by their clove oil, undersized faded kids' Levi's jean jackets and rock t-shirts by memory but I also have to know the Narciso Rodriguez perfumed, sprayed on over dyed denim, Frye boot wearing West German Pottery pickers.** It's actually gotten to the point where 'people' have stolen the pottery out of my cart at thrift shops when my back is turned.

Well, there's another little something I've been grabbing lately that they haven't caught on to but that's a secret - for now.

** I'm the ylang ylang and patchouli oil, head to toe black, faux fur wearing, Dansko clomping cougar behind you.

Nov 4, 2009

The Family Elan -They're a Musical Group

There's just something in Monumental that reminds me of Joy Division's Love Will Tear Us Apart. Could be the sparse recording, bass-baritone I don't know. Who cares really, it's good.

Check them out. While you're at it go discover The Incredible String Band if you haven't already.
  • lute
  • Egyptian tablas
  • paper
  • wooden flute
  • thigh slapping
  • vocals
  • medieval folk

Nov 3, 2009

The Best Mens Style - An A-Z

A - attitude
Cheesy but memorable: The world is like a mirror reflecting what you do and if your face is smiling it smiles back at you.

B - breath
Remember that teacher in school? Well, you don't want to be them - even when you're married. Carry some breath mints, floss, go to the dentist, eat parsley but heavens to betsy don't spray that Binaca in public.

C - colour coordination
...cause every girl's crazy bout a sharp dressed man. You can look like a million bucks if you match. Matching, matching, matching. Someone told me once, 'Blue and green should never be seen except for the sky and the grass.'.

D - dress shoes
Like colour coordination, a good pair of dress shoes can work wonders. Don't go cheap in this department. Go for the simplest, most classic pair you can afford. Don't leave the shop without polish, a shoe horn and forms. Nothing looks sexier than a man's closet with neatly lined rows of shoes displayed on forms. Yes, men's shoes are sexy. To keep your shoes and your feet their best, don't wear the same pair two days in a row. The leather needs time to breathe and dry out.

E - elegance
Male elegance has seemed to have gotten confused somewhere in the late 70s and hasn't fully recovered yet. See my post on the men's pinky ring. Of course, society itself has changed considerably since men actually considered themselves elegant. Elegance doesn't mean the greasy haired guy in the suit with turtle neck sweater, wearing an obtrusive gold watch sipping his 18 year old scotch in a boutique hotel lounge. Offhand elegance is what you're looking for. Denzel Washington, Ryan Gosling, and Christopher Walken all have great offhand elegance. They're well spoken, well presented and they carry themselves well.

F - fresh air
Take even the pastiest chain smoker throw them outside for a few hours and voila - a shade of health. There's a reason it's called fresh air. What's the opposite of fresh? Right. You are what you breathe.

G - gym
The gym could rightly be your living room. Push aside your coffee table and make room for squats, crunches, kick backs, calf raises etc. If you don't like the gym, don't go. Do something else but do it. Remember, muffins make you have a muffin top. Don't give up on yourself, there's no excuse.

H - hems
Pant hems are quickly becoming one of my obsessions. I know I told you to get good shoes but your hem doesn't have to be five inches above them to show them off. Hems should be kept long enough at the back to touch the top of the heel yet short enough in the front to form a break. See Pant Hems: What you need to know.

I - individuality
Don't be the imitator. Be the imitated.

J - juxtaposition
Once you learn that you can mix up your wardrobe you're three quarters of the way there. Don't be afraid to mix textures, patterns (with caution) or style. One of my favourite looks is the meeting of rugged and delicate textures.

K - kiss
You will want to be remembered for this.

L - leathery skin
You'll also be remembered for the touch of your hand. Make sure it's not leathery, or clamy for that matter. My husband sometimes asks to borrow my hand cream. How can I tell him creme brulee really isn't his scent when it makes his hands feel so soft?

M - manners
You don't think people are watching? Well, it may not be the whole room but someone definitely is. You don't think people care about that stuff anymore? Snap out of it! Discover etiquette books or online sites, they're reputation savers.

N - nose hair trimmer
No man, or woman for that matter, should be without. While you're at it trim that mole hair.

O - objet d'art
A small piece of art placed at a focal point in your favourite room not only highlights your personality it also becomes a conversation starter.

P - proportion
Think of a really big guy sitting in a Smart Car. My husband recently refused to buy a suit from a sales associate in an 'oversized monkey suit'. He didn't trust him to make choices for his attire when he couldn't dress himself. Make sure your clothes fit your proportions. Accentuate the good.

Q - quantity
How many drinks until you call it a night?
How much do you tip?
How long is acceptable to wait for your meal before you speak to the maître d'?
How many days till you call?
How many roses are appropriate in relation to time spent together?
How much do you spend on a bottle of wine as a guest at a dinner party?
Life's full of them...

R - roses
Each color means something.
They shouldn't smell like plastic.
Skip the baby's breath.
One in the lapel in the evening beats a carnation.
It takes a certain type of woman to wear rose perfume so investigate before you buy.

S - simplicity
It is always better to err on the side of simplicity rather than be extravagant in your dressing. Christian Dior
The K.I.S.S. principle - keep it simple, stupid

T - tie knot
There are 85 ways to tie a tie. Know more than the Windsor.

U - underwear
Holes, stretched out elastic, comic book characters, pickles and anthropomorphic characters are not attractive. Boxers, briefs, comando - don't knock 'em til you've tried 'em. Have you ever experienced absolute horror (insert Psycho music here) on the first sight of a partner's pants? Strawberries with smiley faces is all I have to say.

V - valour
Valour today is more than showing courage in battle. It's about speech. Be accountable for your actions, speak for those that cannot speak for themselves, whatever it is you choose to do you'll feel better and it gets easier and easier the more you do it.

W - the white shirt
Just like the classic shoe, the white shirt should be the best you can afford. Well fitted, crisp and not polyester. Try something different and go to a tailor to have one custom made.

X - The unknown.
Your next topic of conversation over dinner.

Y - yourself
Know. Love. Be.

Z - zest
Dior once said; ' There is no beauty that is attractive without zest.'. Your get up and go, your gusto, your piss and vinegar, whatever turns your crank, blows your horn - this is what makes you different and attractive.

Nov 2, 2009

Quote of the Week - Honore de Balzac

Carelessness in dressing is moral suicide.

Nov 1, 2009

Vintage Chloé

by Karl Lagerfeld

Oct 29, 2009

6 Menswear Looks I find Appealing

I can't rightfully tell you what I'm bored with without telling you what I find appealing.

top: motorcycle boots, offhand elegance (minus the cigarette), the black short trench coat
bottom: faux fur collars, red accents, the mod influence

6 Menswear Looks I'm Extremely Bored With

This one goes out on special request for harbourmaster:

top: messenger bag, the blazer hoodie combo, acid wash - this was not cool in the 80s either
bottom: urban plaid, the undersized fedora, the pea coat

Oct 28, 2009

5 Ambitious Designer DIY Projects for You

Patience is a virtue. Think you'd have it in you to attempt one of these beauties?

1. Carlos Alberto Montana Hoyos pull tab and zip tie chair via studio g

2. corrugated cardboard coffin by Egil Packaging look out IKEA

3. Bel & Bel Vespa Chair via auto blog

4. tree branch hangers by Alain Berteau for non-profit second hand store Les Petits Riens

5. Rag chair by Tejo Remy for Droog

Oct 27, 2009

Today I'd rather be...

dancing in Joshua Tree National Park with Bob Fosse to Billie Jean.

Top 5 Design Pieces I'm Extremely Bored Of

1. if I hit my head on this one more time.... ARCO lamp
2. Starck's ghost chairs - Ghostbusters
3. Noguchi table - sigh
4. Oh look, it's an Eames lounge chair and ottoman

5. Barcelona chair - ho-hum
Honourable Mention - the don't make me want you Saarinen table

Oct 26, 2009

Vintage Glenoit

faux fur

Quote of the Week - Crosby Stills Nash and Young

If you can't be with the one you love, love the one you're with.

The Satanic Majesty's Request