Monday, January 18, 2010

2010 Golden Globes

Award season has definitely arrived. And with it, the red carpet fashion! I know there was some rain on last night's red carpet, but over here in Perth it is well over 40 degrees and even though I have my AC cranking, it's doing little to alleviate the heat. And so, I have decided to churn out the photos in no particular order:

Hate: Jennifer Morrison - Luis Antonio (There's such a thing as too many ruffles)

Undecided: Anna Paquin - Stella McCartney (I love the cut of the dress, apart from the front slit, but I'm not sure about so much sparkles)

Love: Anna Kendrick - Marchesa (Perhaps a tad too ruffled but that fabric is so pretty it doens't matter)

Love: Jennifer Aniston - Valentino couture (I hate to say this, but she looks fantastic, albeit too much of the same old; it would be nice if she tried a different look once in a while.)

Hate: Amy Adams - Carolina Herrera (Could there be a more unflattering dress?)

Love - Zoe Saldana - Luis Vuitton (Love the deep burgundy on her and the detail on the bodice is to die for!)

Love: Calista Flockhart - Alberta Ferretti (Gorgeously delicate and ethereal)

Undecided: Christina Aguilera - Versace (Surprisingly ladylike in a gorgeous colour, though I'm a little unsure about the futuristic silver corset. Plus the absence or a strong red lip makes for a lovely change.)

Love: Diane Kruger - Christian Lacroix (Okay, so this is a bit Barbie but one has to admit that this dress has absolutely exquisite detailing)

Love: Jayma Mays - Badgley Mischka (The black and white bodice reminds me slightly of that iconic vintage Valentino dress worn by Julia Roberts at the 73rd Academy Awards, but the spiderweb skirt gives it a modern edge)

Love: Dianna Agron - Badgley Mischka (2 words - utter perfection! One of my favourites for the nite)

Undecided: Kate Hudson - Marchesa (I think this is cute, but definitely with different shoes)

Love: Emily Blunt - Dolce & Gabbana (Another perfect dress, my other favourite from tonight)

Hate: Chloe Sevigny - Valentino (Remember what I said about too many ruffles? This isn't as bad, but I still am not loving it.)

Undecided: Jennifer Garner - Atelier Versace (I just don't know about this colour on her, otherwise it's a lovely dress.)

Undecided: Marion Cotillard - Christian Dior (I love the colour and the bodice of this dress but I just can't get past that lace insert. I feel they should just have left it alone.)

Love: Cameron Diaz - Alexander McQueen (Gorgeous colour and cut - fits beautifully, but perhaps different shoes?)

Hate: Christina Hendricks - Christian Siriano (You know, overly beruffled seems to be a bit of a culprit tonight. Ordinarily, I think this dress might be okay, but the lovely Christina is no stick insect and we all know that ruffles serve to add texture and depth, none of which flatter Christina's voluptuousness.)

Undecided: Fergie - Dolce & Gabbana (I like the dress' pretty colour and simplicity but somehow this feels a little bit prom and/or bridesmaid's dress to me)

Love: Kristen Bell - Jasmine di Milo (Yes, it's a cliche but this dress certainly is short and sweet; love the twisted ruched effect.)

Undecided: Drew Barrymore - Atelier Versace (While I love the colour and the scultural detail on the shoulder, I feel that same detail looks very odd at the hip.)

Love: Sandra Bullock - Bottega Venetta (The semi-sheer skirt adds a bit of fun and the deep royal purple colour is simply gorgeous. It makes an otherwise simple design pop.)

Undecided: Olivia Wilde - Gucci (I really don't know about this one. I love how it fits on her but the fabric just seems a little too Vegas for me.)

Love: Ginnifer Goodwin - Vionnet (Gorgeous cut, gorgeous colour, gorgeous dress!)

Love: Maggie Gyllenhaal - RM by Roland Mouret (Maggie usually dons very offbeat looks but the peachey-salmon / salmony-peach dress with sculptural details is divine! The colour looks great on her and that fit is utter perfection.)

Love: Lea Michelle - Oscar de la Renta (Drama personified! The very quintessential Oscar de la Renta dress.)

Love: Carey Mulligan - Nina Ricci (Cute girl, cute dress. The lace detailing is pretty without being saccharine sweet.)

Love: Rose Byrne - Lanvin (Another gorgeous purple gown, a much deeper hue and more more structured but no less beautiful.)

Love: Heather Graham - Elie Saab (Black, sparkly and gorgeous)

Saturday, September 26, 2009

New York Fashion Week Spring 2010

Thanks to the geographical locations of Northern and Southern Hemispheres, while are currently in spring going on summer, the folks up north have just stepped into fall. You know what this means; yes, the spring collections for 2010 are now out. Of course things being what they are, this means we won't be wearing any of these trends till this time next year, but a girl can still look, salivate and plan her outfit(s) in advance, can't she?

So at this point, we have 5 main looks and I think all of these will translate well over here too. Mixed prints are making another round and at least this means we'll also be able to re-use the florals, graphic prints, painterlies, et al that we've accumulated in the past months. Personally, I'm not a big fan of mixing my patterns but it can easily be done by sticking to a similar colour scheme. Still, I think I'll be whipping out those colour-block items that are still (thankfully) in and work them back with the prints.

Americana is another look that has come back around. Shades of red, white and blue are a given but these can easily be worked back with other neutrals like taupe, stone, sand and beige. The odd black leather jacket will also work well to toughen the look and come in handy on those nippy spring nights. Overall, this is a look that you can dress up or down as much as you want. Preppy would be great but relaxed and slouchy work as well and clean and crisp.

Yet another trend that is making a comeback is the polka dot. Again, this is a look that is very suited to ladylike cuts and designs but they can be modernised by the use of different fabrics - grey marle gives polka dots a sportier edge. Of course, there's nothing quite like a 50's-esque silhouette with this charming little print. And yes, we are talking small dots as opposed to those huge ladybird ones.

Tribal doesn't seem to be going away either. Last summer we saw the return of ikat and come spring next year (or maybe even earlier, depending on how quickly high street chains can spew out copies) we'll be seeing a strong African influence in colours and textiles. Yes, this does include the safari suit, though a more relaxed version instead. For those who don't want to go the whole hog with this look, wooden beads will be a must.

Finally we have shades of grey. And may I first say, I LOVE grey. I admit I was pretty late to jump in on this trend when it started a few years back. For some strange reason, I felt that it was just a poor man's version of black and I'm not afraid to admit that I was wrong and soon saw the error of my ways. So yes, I wear heaps of grey and I'm loving the fact that its not going away anytime soon. Recently we had luxe sport in grey but it looks like the new collection will be about luxe fabrics like silk, satin, silk georgette, etc. So practical and luxurious? Yes, please!

Thursday, September 24, 2009

1 Dress + 1 Year = More looks than you could have imagined

To most women (certainly to me) having to wear the same item every day for even a week would be insanely difficult. One month? I don't think so. One year? HELL no! It is clear though, that Sheena Matheiken is not just any woman. In a bid to raise funds for the Akanksha Foundation, a grassroots foundation dedicated to modernizing and revolutionizing education in India, Sheena created The Uniform Project.

Her goal is to wear one dress for an entire year. Of course, for the sake of general health and cleanliness, she had seven of the same dress made, one for each day of the week. New looks are created daily, with the use of thrifted, hand-made and/or donated items. Sometimes these looks are inspired by current affairs, like the swearing in of Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States, Sonia Sotomayor and India's Day of Independence. Others can be dictated by mood or weather.

Since May 2009 Sheena has raised US$13,775, which will go to funding uniforms and other educational expenses for Akanksha's School Project. Since the project's conception, she has donated a dollar a day of her own money but all other reader donations would be more than welcome.

On a personal level, I find Sheena's work absolutely inspiring. On a creative/fashion level, I find her totally genius. Some of her looks are very eye-catching (to put it mildly) and it would certainly take guts to wear most of her creations. Others look more wearable and seem almost 'normal'. But hey, kudos to Sheena's unbridled creativity and dedication to her cause and craft. She has managed to fuse charity and fashion in a new and creative manner, and hopefully will serve as an inspiration for all who visit her site.

Thursday, July 09, 2009

Australia's Next Top Model Cycle 5 - Live Final

Yeah I know, its a little past the live final. But can I just say that since Clare got booted last week, I've been pretty ambivalent as to who wins? Let's face it, Cassi has the face and figure if not the attitude or the walk. Tahnee has the face and the walk, she's such a nice girl and she's just not skinny enough for high fashion. Don't get me wrong; I think she has an amazing figure but it really is more Victoria's Secret than Lanvin.

So the live final took place at Luna Park, with guest judges Priscilla Leighton-Clark of Priscilla's Model Management, photographer Russell James and editor of Harper's Bazaar Australia, Claudia Navone. The models had hair and makeup done by Nigel Stanislaus from Maybelline and Joh Bailey and we had some running commentary from ex model and current MTV host Ruby Rose.

The season's models finally came out on the runway, wearing whatever outfit they had on during their final photo shoot. And I just have to say - I love Clare. Then we had Jessica Mauboy doing a live performance - absolutely hot outfit. Next came a montage of Cassii vs Tahnee in the runway stakes (and we know who wins there) followed by another of Alex and Charlotte bickering throughout the season.

This gives the models just enough time to get changed for the Australian Designers Parade, where the girls model outfits by Josh Goot, Marnie Skillings and Fernando Frissoni. Finally, Cassi and Tahnee reappear in stunning black Alex Perry gowns, waists so narrow its a wonder they could even breathe. And again, I couldn't help but think that the darkness of those dresses would have contrasted beautifully with Clare's luminous pale skin and hair.

Out comes Sarah, also in a sparkly Alex Perry gown and announces Australia's Favourite Model. And its Clare! Cassi and Tahnee go through their photos and talk about them, before the judges weigh in on their favourite photos as well. Finally we start getting the judges votes. Jonathan went with Tahnee while both Russell and Claudia went with Cassi. I think it was obvious that Claudia would have gone with whichever girl could do high fashion. And we know that Harper's would feature more girls like Cassi any day, over girls like Tahnee. Yes its a shame but its fashion.

We then took a bit of a brea from more votes, with Sarah calling in Tahnee's mum Jane to share in the excitement. She then surprises Cassi by inviting her mum out (as we know, Cassi's mother had moved to LA). Another performance by Jessica Mauboy and more interviews. And Tahnee has a nosebleed! The first on any Top Model history ever! Back to the judges votes: Sarah and Charlotte voted for Tahnee, while Alex and Priscilla go for cassi. So Cassi leads. I love Charlotte's little rant when she explained why she wasn't going to vote for cassi, and I agree with her. If Cassi really does marry that boyfriend of hers who, at 25 is still too young (in my eyes; let's not even go near her age!) to get married anyway she's never going to make it big in the modeling world.

Finally Sarah opens that all-important envelope. And the winner is ....TAHNEE!!!!!!

Wednesday, July 01, 2009

Australia's Next Top Model Cycle 5 - Week 9

Its Fashion Week! The models trekked over to Priscilla's and were given the news that they had a series of go-sees for Rosemount Australian Fashion Week. First up was Ginger & Smart where Clare was picked up. Next came Wayne Cooper. Poor Tahnee was deemed too voluptuous while the other two got through, though Cassi was told that she had to improve her walk. At Nicola Finetti, Clare once again got the job, along with Tahnee. The girls then donned fab swinsuits for Anna & Boy. Tahnee's boobs were too big, Clare's were too small and Cassi walked away with the catwalk prize, amidst endless crowing about getting a show that Clare didn't. Never mind that Clare scored every thing else. Finally, the girls auditioned for the Diet Coke Little Black Dress show and all got through.

Clare starts off the shows with Ginger & Smart. The other two and noticeably sour-graped as they say their goodbyes. Clare walked like a seasoned model, garnering praise from jonathan and Sarah. She shone once again at Wayne Cooper and while Cassi was walking a lot better, she still looked a bit wobbly. At Nicola Finetti, Alex wasn't too happy with Clare's walk but Tahnee was an absolute hit. Cassi was very much improved at Anna & Boy's show and by the time the Little Black Dress show rolled up, she showed a lot more confidence on the runway. As Charlotte said, Tahnee was a sex kitten in Alex Perry while Clare was sexy, edgy, international and expensive.

After the shows, Sarah revealed that Fashion Week had been a challenge and of course, there would be a winner. No surprises that it was Clare, who scored 4 out of 5 shows. Her prize was a flight to Broome where she would be staying at the Pinctada Cable Beach Spa and Resort.

But before that, the weekly photo shoot! The girls were driven to Gary Beach where they met up with Jonathan and photographer (and past Top Model judge) Jez Smith. The brief was for a group shot - natural, beautiful and serene. The girls took positios both by the water's edge and in the water, Cassi losing the top of her dress during a particularly strong wave. After a costume change, the girls had their individual shoots. Clare was up first and though Jez thought she had a very good range, he also found her too posey. Next came Cassi who was very at ease and looked to be taking some beautiful shots. Finally Tahnee had her turn. I find it very curious that they seem to always put her in the shiny sparkly dresses, given she does carry the most weight though she isn't in any way fat. But both Jez and Jonathan also picked up on the fact that she didn't always know how to position her body, to show off her best angles.

At elimination, Jez and Director of Development of Elite New York, Doll Wright guest judged. Everyone loved the group shot , and though judging was supposed to be based on that shot, the individual photos were also shown, which I think might have skewed the results somewhat. But that's just my opinion. The girls were asked why they thought they should be Australia's Next Top Model.

Tahnee, desperately trying not to cry, and totally failing was up first. She thinks she's versatile, with the ability to carry off editorial and commercial shoots but admits that she may be a little big. Yes, she is wonderful in photos but as the castings showed, she isn't as versatile as she (and Sarah) would like to think. Sarah maintains that Tahnee's figure is perfect (which it is, if she were planning a career in swimsuit/lingerie modelling and becoming a Victoria's Secret model - which she has previously said she wants) but what Sarah says, and what the designers want are two very different things. Cassi came next and managed to shock the other two, by saying that unlike Clare and Tahnee, who only wanted to win for the money, she needed to win. She added that she had leanred to control her temper and not to scream at people and punch walls. Gee, what a wonderful human being she must now be. I admit that Clare's little spiel threw me a little. She started off with a quote; "I’m a bit of a nanna. I believe it’s all about being professional, and working hard’. And these are Sarah’s words from Foxtel Magazine." To be fair to me, I think the judges were a little gobsmacked as well. But Sarah did praise Clare for being as prepared as that, which is something she had been all along in the competition.

The girls left the room and the judging commenced. Clare did not draw much love from Jez or Doll, both choosing to concentrate on her photo rather than her overall modelling versatility and capability, citing that she had a very unusual and specific look (hello, Coco Roach and Anja Rubik?) Tahnee's size was ignored because her photos (that again) were just too beautiful. Cassi was described as being very international but oh, let's just ignore that bad walk. It was finally crunch time and Tahnee's name was called out first. I just had a bad feeling Cassi's name would be called next and I was right. She kept her cool till the end though, and walked out head held high.

I wish I could say I was very excited for next week's live finale but with Clare given the axe, I can't help feeling a bit blah about it. I hope Tahnee wins because she's a lot better than Cassi, who's only saving grace is that she does take stunning photos. But as a close friend said, "In a year, Clare will be doing high fashion, Tahnee will be doing TV and Cassi will be doing meth." Yes he's a bitch, but in this case, I think I agree with him.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Australia's Next Top Model Cycle 5 - Week 8

It's off to London they go! Sarah comes to say goodbye to the girls as they were packing, with a warning that they would always be on show. If that isn't enough to say sneaky photographers then I don't know what else is. The girls stopped-over in Abu Dhabi and enjoyed some pampering before continuing their flight to London. Obviously, Sarah advice wasn't enough for the girls as they were caught not looking their best, though none of them looked bad either.

The girls were met by Gerry DeVeaux, one of the judges on Britain's Next Top Model who took the girls out shopping to show them some examples of London style, and who guided them through their photo shoot. The models were housed at the pentuhouse suite of Sanderson Hotel. The next day, they were ecstatic to visit Topshop, declaring that they had never seen such a large shop before. I am in total agreement and think Australia needs a Topshop and H&M. At the very least.

After visiting a few more shops, they are done and it is then revealed to the girls that they had had a challenge without even realising it; they had been being secretly photographed upon arriving at Heathrow Airport. The girl who looked the best was Adele, who chose Cassi to go with her to the London premiere of Fast and Furious. Tahnee and Clare remained at the hotel and pretended to be Adele and Cassi.

Next up for the go-sees. They were to make their way to two of the top agencies in London - Storm and Premier. At Storm, the girls were interviewed by Managing Director Sarah Doukas. Clare and Cassi both received a lot of praise, with Clare being declared the perfect balance, able to do editorial, high fashion, commercial and catwalk, while Cassi's photos showed her skill in front of the camera. While Sarah Doukas also thought highly of Tahnee and Adele, she thought that the former might be a bit more commercial and the latter still had room to grow, though she had the potential to grow into a very good model.

At Premier, the girls were met by Director of Scouting, Anthony Gordon and Premier founder Carole White. The girls were asked to walk and none of them escaped scott-free. Adele was told that she had very good posture and was given a few pointers of how to hold herself while walking, but was also deemed a little too tall. Again, Clare was described as perfect, but was unable to correct a slight bounce in her walk. Cassi's walk is much improved but just wasn't up to the tandard it needed to be. Once again, she gave excuses for her poor walk, which didn't impress too much. Tahnee walked well, but for the second time, was seen as perhaps being a little limited in her client base, due to her more commercial look and curiver figure. At the end of the go-see, Carole dd mention that if she had to choose, she'd go with Clare and Cassi.

Next up was the photo shoot. The brief - the cool and sexy London look (its almost a Rimmel ad). The photographer - Robert Astley Sparke. The locations - iconic London landmarks. Tahnee was first up and shot with Big Ben in the background. She was versatile, took direction easily and delighted Sparke enough to be booked again in the future. Adele wore a shimmery dress that cost AU$100,000 though I certainly didn't think it looked like it should have been anywhere near that pricey. Her shoot took place in one of the unmistakeable red phone booths. You could see that she tried giving more range in her expressions but in the end, the photographer didn't think she took direction very well. Cassi had her photos taken while hanging out of the double decker bus and clearly wowed Gerry. Clare was dressed very androgenously and her location was on the steps of a London terrace house.

Back in Australia, the girls headed for judging and elimination. Guest judging were Jonathan Pease and past Top Model winner Alice Burdeau. Clare was up first and while she and Sarah liked her photo, Alex and Charlotte hated it, calling it cheese. However, her face was still very strong so it wasn't horrendous cheese. Overall, the judges deemed that Adele was still giving that same look in her photos, though they also acknowledged that Alice had done the same thing and that the one look was a fantastic one. Plus she had mande a $100,000 dress look much cheaper than it was - I don't agree, I think it was the dress itsel but hey, that's just me. Cassi's photo was decidedly uninspiring and looked just like a girl hanging off the back of a bus; there simply wasn't any modeling there. Tahnee's photo, while the best of the lot, wasn't her best photo either.

While the judges didn't like Clare's photo on the whole, they collectively agreed that she had the best range and was the most mature and professional, and had been from day 1. She was a keeper. The issue of Tahnee's limited client base was brought up but her good photos were undeniable. She was through too. With Adele and Cassi in the bottom two, anyone who had been following the show should have known already who would go, as Alex Perry clearly said he didn't agree with the decision made, and he had been barracking for Adele all along. And so, we say goodby to Adele.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Emma Watson in Teen Vogue August 2009

Little Hermione has grown up! And thankfully, not into some hard-partying, drug-taking and alcohol-soaked celebutante either. Emma Watson always seems to have this air of chic elegance about her. I love this shoot, and I think the clothes and the setting suit her to a tee. However, I do hope that isn't real fur she's been styled with. As much as I love her and her style, I love my animals more.

Also included are some out-takes. Thanks to Just Jared for the photos!