Designer, Movies

Movie Moments: The Designer Connection Part IV

Belle de Jour (1967), Director Luis Buñuel, Designer Yves Saint Laurent.

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As in the last Movie Moments post, ‘Funny Face’, this week’s designer collaboration is the product born of a friendship between a young designer and his muse. In this instance, it is Yves Saint Laurent who dresses a very young and beautiful Catherine Deneuve. She plays a wealthy young housewife who is not able to be intimate with her loving husband, but decides to live out her fantasies by becoming a prostitute (it is, after all, a Buñuel film). This she does only by day, hence the name of the film, ‘Belle de Jour’.

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Deneuve’s Severine is by turns aloof and sensual as the film explores the boundaries of morality. Her journey is enhanced by Saint Laurent’s impeccable costumes, classic and timeless, with a twist of fetish.

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Her bourgeois lifestyle is evident in the precise tailoring of her clothing, something even her colleagues notice, and covet. Her flawless style, from her hair down to her Roger Vivier Pilgrim pumps, speaks volumes about her character. Accordingly, her hair and clothing change as Severigne becomes Belle. Wool gives way to vinyl, rigorous up do’s give way to soft waves. Saint Laurent takes the transformation in his stride, giving us a collection of trendsetting costumes which have become iconic of 60’s style. The safari dress and the schoolgirl inspired outfit for example, continue to influence fashion designers today. I mean, who would say no to any of Severigne’s amazing coats? Eternally chic, and a testament to Yves Saint Laurent’s genius, Severine will continue to be reinvented in glossy mags, providing inspiration for day, or night.

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Men, Style Tips, Wardrobe Staple

More White Shirt Goodness

I forgot to include this excellent image in yesterdays’ white shirt post. Now it gets a whole post of its own!

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Which is a good thing because this is what a stylish summer man looks like in my mind…simple styling, relaxed silhouette, crinkly soft fabrics in light colours, and of course some lovely accessories in the way of man jewellery, shades and not a pair of Havaianas flip-flops in sight.

Hooray for shirt, shoes and shorts! Everybody loves a well dressed man, and nobody likes man-toes…true story.

 

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Men, Style Tips, Wardrobe Staple

More White Shirts

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After last week’s post about white shirts, I wore white shirts for days. I have four of them and would love a few more…if I find the perfect one you’ll hear about it!

Anyways, I heard over and over again “what about one for guys?”, and seeing as there is nothing sexier than a man in a crisp white shirt, here goes. A classic across the ages, dressed up or dressed down, a man in a white shirt is timeless chic.

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Men, Style Tips, Women

Rainy Day Solution

Rainy and windy miserable day…not good when you have wavy hair! This morning I looked like I was wearing a Tina Turner wig.

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I’ve been needing a cap exactly for days like this. Hey presto, no more frizz! If only everything could be this easy.

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Accessories, Men, Style Tips

Matchy Matchy

I have been a fan of matching everything for as long as I can remember…one of my earliest memories is being about 4 years old and fervently insisting that the ribbons in my hair match the ribbon lace on my socks. Hmmm not much has changed.

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One of the best matching tricks is: shoes the same colour a your pants make your legs look longer. Yes it’s true! And who wouldn’t want longer legs, right? The colour extending all the way from your waist to your toes means there’s continuity and the eye is tricked into seeing longer legs.

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Ladies know about this rule (thank you nude coloured pumps) but it may be news to even the most sartorial boys out there.

So now you know! No need to stick with black thanks to all the amazing coloured pants and shoes available for men at the moment. Examples seen here from Alfie’s Friend Rolfe.

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Designer, Movies

Movie Moments: The Designer Connection Part III

Funny Face (1957), Director Stanley Donen, Designer Hubert de Givenchy.

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Before there was ‘The Devil Wears Prada’, there was ‘Funny Face’. Yes, yes, yet another Audrey Hepburn film… However, this movie makes this list not so much for Audrey as for fashion designer Hubert de Givenchy. As film lore tells it, Givenchy first met Hepburn for her movie ‘Sabrina’. The film producers had asked Balenciaga for costumes, but being busy with a new collection, he sent them to see his young friend Givenchy. On hearing the name Hepburn, the designer expected to see a certain Katherine who was very famous at the time. Instead, in comes a young Audrey, dressed in ‘small pants and ballet flats’. His gowns fit like a dream, they clicked and became life long friends. He dressed her in life and for every film since, including in this fashion bonanza known as ‘Funny Face’.

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In a nutshell, this is a light musical in which a dowdy intellectual is turned into a graceful cover girl by a fashion magazine editor looking for something different. This means several things: there is singing, there is dancing (look out for the utterly awesome ‘Think Pink’ number). There is humour. There is a makeover- there is FASHION. Serious fashion. There is a sequence with an actual high fashion shoot in Paris. Really. And not just any fashion shoot, but one dreamt up by the film’s visual consultant Richard Avedon, and starring Hepburn in a myriad Givenchy gowns. Triple whammy! This fashion shoot spawned some of the most often copied images, even today (woman in a ladylike dress with colourful balloons, anyone?).

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In amongst the glamour, Hepburn has time for a dance at a beatnik club dressed in the slim black silhouette (with dreamy loafers!) she made into a worldwide trend. While this look is iconic, it is the Givenchy gowns which shine in this film. There are some real heart wrenchingly stylish moments, culminating in a wonderfully fresh wedding gown (come to think of it, hopeful brides should bookmark this whole film). Watch this film for some mammoth fashion inspo, but be warned- you may be moved to set up an impromptu fashion shoot/show with lengths of fabric and bits from your wardrobe during viewing. Heck, even the couch throw might do.

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Wardrobe Staple, Women

White Shirt, What Would I Do Without You?

When your brain is too tired to think of what to wear and you hate everything you own (yes, we’ve all been there!!), nothing can make your life easier than pulling out a classic white shirt. A must have in every single wardrobe that ever was.

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Whether you prefer a silky blouse style or crispy man style, a stiff tuxedo front or gauzy loose weave, short sleeve or rolled sleeve, fitted or oversize, off white or bright white…here’s an inspiration board to get you going. Wear a white shirt with anything and everything.

To be honest I need this inspiration board more than anybody at the moment…preparations for Christmas trade at my boutique are making my brain very tired!

Snapping out of it as of RIGHT NOW.

xx

Images sourced from The Sartorialist, Net-a-porter, Wiki Fashion, Style.com and Carolina Herrera.

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Designer, Movies

Movie Moments: The Designer Connection Part II

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This week’s movie is not exactly a collaboration, but the result of a fashion designer’s foray into film direction. Tom Ford’s directorial debut, A Single Man, was a self funded labour of love, and is a thing of stunning beauty. It tells the story of an English professor, George Falconer (Colin Firth in an Oscar nominated performance), living in 1960’s Los Angeles, and struggling with the loss of his lover some months prior. The film follows him over the course of a day, the day on which he has decided he will end his life.

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Falconer is by nature a fastidious man, rendered clear in his preparations. As he dresses for the day, Ford’s own obsession for detail is evident- he had the professor’s Savile Row suit ‘aged’ to suggest a man who, albeit not affluent, cares about quality. The dresser, his clothes, his desk are laid out just so, the colour palette restricted. The achingly stylish scenes have been likened to fashion ads. I see more than fashionable exactitude- the beautiful scenes become highly emotive if seen through the professor’s eyes, that is, for one final time. Falconer goes through his day believing it will be his last, but his very resolution allows him to finally connect to his surroundings and the people he encounters in a way he has not been able to do since his great loss. It is a journey of desire and despair, isolation and deep longing, of great love. Can you tell how much I LIKE this film??

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Tom Ford’s aesthetic is present throughout, in the flawless elegance of every shot and in the polished restraint of the acting (the performances by a ridiculously good looking cast are impeccable).

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It is present in the beautiful sets- they searched for months for the right house until coming across the Schaffer House by architect John Lautner, a mid century dream.

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And finally, as expected, Ford’s stylistic influence is most definitely present in the costumes. It might have been the amazing team behind TV series Mad Men that carried the costume and design departments, but Ford’s calculated hand is ever present, in every detail, down to the last pink cigarette.

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Wishlist, Women

Weekend Perv: Acne Boots

Quick, before the weekend is over! Acne Pistol boots in rose gold…very covetable, practical(ish), beautiful and indeed most worthy of the Weekend Perv themselves.

But take a moment to check out that whole outfit. Leather pencil skirt, House Of Hackney floral sweatshirt, chain bracelet, soft clutch and those boots…I want it all!

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Men, Shopping, Stylist Tales

1 Outfit, 3 Awesome Looks

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I do love a good shirt. Luckily there are a lot of different styles around for Spring / Summer, and lots of prints too if you dare. As you can see in this look that I sourced for a client, the shirt is definitely the hero of this great semi-casual Spring outfit.

1. Worn unbuttoned and untucked for an easy and casual overshirt look.
2. Worn buttoned up with rolled sleeve for a neater but still casual look.
3. Worn tucked in with a nice belt for a more dressed up look.

Needless to say, this shirt was one of my client’s favourite pieces in the end…Excellent tailored cut, cotton linen fabric in tiny polka dot and sweet little pocket square detail made it a great buy and a pleasure to wear.

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Outfit consists of Scotch and Soda polka dot shirt, Light Comma Shadow patterned t-shirt, Maians Julian Shoes in Marengo, Carhart Sid Pants in Canyon.

The rest of the outfit needs a little credit too. Even though this look is a quite bold with the rust coloured chinos, a navy, olive or beige pant would work just as well and be more subdued. Black jeans would even work! And the shoes could change depending on the occasion of course.

Hope you like this outfit as much as my client did! I think it’s fun and relaxed, but still stylish. Really, that should be the aim of all outfits I think!

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