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Posts tagged ‘magazines’

Celebrating Dior Celebrating Femininity

By , 15 March, 2012, 1 Comment

In the February (2012) issue of Harper’s Bazaar, Meenal Mistry looks at the 65th birthday of Dior’s New Look.

Spring's New Look

Christian Dior's New Look In Harper's

Perhaps my favorite quote is this:

But why now? Does 2012 look like 1947? We’re not quite postwar (and it’s hard to tell when we might be), but there is a sense of women craving a bit of optimism and maybe a trace of tradition. “We were delighted to see the retro femininity,” says Lane Crawford fashion director Sarah Rutson, who cites Jil Sander and Prada as particular favourites. “With so much uncertainty in the world, to have that sense of lightness just seemed so right.”

“Dior said that the forward thrust of the hips was a way for women to advertise their childrearing abilities, so he was certainly tapping into the emergence of the baby boom,” says Timothy Long, the costume curator at the Chicago History Museum. “But there’s no surprise that that whole idea of hyperfemininity is going to continue.”

PS I’ve been meaning to post this for awhile now, but my scanner was not playing nice. Ugh.

Is Rebecca Minkoff A Big Fat Liar? (And Other Fashion Designer & Magazine Sins)

By , 19 November, 2009, No Comment

I told you I was sick and stuck looking at a bunch of magazines… If anyone thought that looking at the marked pages later would temper my responses, they were wrong! I am trying to move past the rants (and the 1980s) as quickly as possible, but here’s an upsetting thing from November’s Marie Claire that I could not ignore:

leather-bracelets

Rebecca Minkoff’s leather bracelets. Inspired by the strap on her handbags. Biker meets Barneys.

Is Rebecca Minkoff a big fat liar? A picture’s worth a thousand words — so here’s a picture of two of my own leather bracelets that I still saved from my days and nights in the 80’s:

my-retro-80s-leather-bracelets

I’m not going to say that these leather bracelets are a pure invention of the 80’s; they owe inspiration to the 60’s — and heaven knows who and where before that. Somethings go far so back, it’s nearly impossible to give proper credit. But to intimate that a current designer is responsible for or invented a look is maddening.

Marie Claire staff may be as young as Minkoff, and so maybe not one of them wore one of these ‘back in the day’, but shouldn’t someone recall seeing these before? They were everywhere in the 1980’s. If they forgot that mom, the cool babysitter, etc., wore them, then how about seeing them in glossy fashion magazines? Maybe even in their own publication, say September, 2008 — or the competition they peruse. Everyone’s talking about the 80’s (even though they might be doing poor jobs of matching looks), so how on earth does anyone miss these facts. (Period, cuz that’s rhetorical.)

OK, so maybe calling Minkoff a liar is a bit much… But let’s not act like she — or any of the plethora of studded and adorned leather bracelet designers out now — were inspired void of any knowledge of these accessories, of the styles and designs which came before them.

Designers who replicate the past and do not acknowledge such inspiration annoy me to no end; magazines who pander & promote such inaccuracies will get smacked in the nose by their own rolled-up glossy-page publications– just like a dog who pees on the carpet.

Remembering The 1980s Fashions In Valley Girl

By , 19 November, 2009, No Comment

I had spotted this fashion shopping spread in that Elle‘s Women In Hollywood Issue, and the minute I saw it I was confused.

elle-valley-girl

“Break out the jelly platforms, biker shorts, neon bouclé and juicy bangles for a totally rad ensemble,” it says — for Valley Girl?! That’s not the way I remembered the fashions in the film. So, jumping the que in our NetFlix account, I got Valley Girl (1983) to refresh my memory.

Valley Girl stars Nicolas Cage and Deborah Foreman in the ultimate 80’s Romeo and Juliet story — with a much better ending, as no one dies. *wink* It has sat in my memory all these years as a great film in terms of capturing and expressing the look and feel of the times presented — not just the decade, but those teen years — projecting it all onto a screen then, and preserving it for us now. (I’m not the only one who feels this way either.)

To be honest, Kleph has an excellent review of the film; I found it while Googling for photos and insist that you read it because I probably couldn’t say it better or add anything, really. Plus, this post is about other things about the film: the fashions in the film. So let’s get to it.

Like I said, I could have been wrong recalling the fashions in the film, so I watched it again to be sure… But I wasn’t wrong. Valley Girl is not full of jelly & neon.

Valley Girls Mall Shopping

Valley Girls Mall Shopping

This was a period of bright colors, but not neon; think hot pink, turquoise, and yellow, not day-glo colors. The 80’s also had a strong punk influence — black, red, and more black.

Teen House Party In Valley Girl

Teen House Party In Valley Girl

Overall, bright solids, stripes and blocks of color were predominant. Collars were ‘up’. Patterns and stripes were bold, clear & crisp, not the colorful cluttered-on-black zippered things Elle shows.

valley-girl-stripes-and-patterns

Julie and Randy in the Mall Food Court

And Julie also wore quite a bit of the that romantic lacy look that I can best describe as Gunne Sax — not just in her prom dress (or the prom dresses of others), but lacy tops with long sleeves with plenty of buttons.

Lace Blouse In Valley Girl

Lace Blouse In Valley Girl

Julie doesn’t just wear these clothes for the cinematic conveyance of her difference, her ties to her hippie parents, her romantic side, or her nervousness dressing for a party (when her friend has to help her button those buttons on her sleeves); these fashions were strong in the 80’s. I owned and wore several of these sorts of blouses — and my prom dresses were all Gunne Sax.

Posing For Prom Pictures In Valley Girl

Posing For Prom Pictures In Valley Girl

I didn’t live in Southern California, but my friends and I dressed a lot like this (the ‘trickle to the heartland’ theory of fashion); one of the reasons that this movie spoke to us all then — and is fondly remembered now.

That Elle might get the fashions wrong is sad… It’s not just that I want the staff to be old enough to remember Valley Girl (though that would be nice!), fashion was a huge part of the film. As Kleph wrote:

That’s partly because Coolidge understood the distinction was a fallacy to begin with. The valley kids define themselves through what they buy while the Hollywood kids do it by what they don’t – but they still show their allegiances via what they wear. And it’s important that, in Valley Girl, when Julie and Randy first see each other – first become interested in each other – it’s at the beach when they are not in the usual garb of their tribes. It’s also no accident the film starts inside a mall but ends outside it.

Valley Girl is an iconic film which preserves fashions of the time as much as it uses them for a point, yet in pushing the return of such retro 80s fashions, Elle gets it all wrong. For the fashion mag to get the fashions so wrong isn’t ironic; it’s a tragedy.

Josie Cotton Performing In Valley Girl

Josie Cotton Performing In Valley Girl

Elle’s “Women In Hollywood Issue” (Vintage Film Fashions!)

By , 9 November, 2009, No Comment

The November issue of Elle magazine (along with it’s ever-increasing holiday push) is focused on women in Hollywood, including a list of “the 63 most loved and feared in the biz.”

Elle's The Women In Hollywood Issue, November 2009

Elle's The Women In Hollywood Issue, November 2009

If you’re a modern movie maven, you’ll love this issue (even if you take issue with some of the selections — I know I always do with lists, as you’ll soon see!).

And if you’re a classic film fan or a vintage glamour fashionista, you’re sure to love this issue’s Elle Shops, a Fashion In Film Countdown of “monochromatic stunners inspired by our favorite black-and-white films.” Even if only giving it an ‘A’ for effort.

(Remember, you can click the images to see much larger scans!)

In at #10, From Here To Eternity, focused on vintage-styled beach & resort wear.

Elle: From Here To Eternity

Elle: From Here To Eternity

Number 9 is Paper Moon; I’m not much of a ‘tomboy,’ but I’m completely smitten with the sweet Chloé by Hannah MacGibbon silk linen jacket.

Elle: Paper Moon

Elle: Paper Moon

At #8, Swing Time, featuring a few little white ruffled blouses in the tuxedo-inspired pieces.

Elle: Swing Time

Elle: Swing Time

Raging Bull is in at #7. Again, it’s not my style — and I haven’t seen the film.

Elle: Raging Bull

Elle: Raging Bull

At # 6, Shanghai Express; the Dolce & Gabbana goat-fur coat is just one of those pieces I’d have to try on to see if it would be fab or fug… Plus, I’m more than a bit ambivalent about fur; I only own vintage fur pieces.

Elle: Shanghai Express

Elle: Shanghai Express

Some Like It Hot is in at #5. I hate-hate-hate it when folks say you get the look of a film by wearing clothing with the star’s image printed onto the fabric of a dress or t-shirt or whatever. That’s not the look or style of the film; it’s crass celebrity commercialism. And the white cotton Phillip Lim dress covered in golden sequins is so not that film.

Elle: Some Like It Hot

Elle: Some Like It Hot

For Philadelphia Story (number 4 on the list), the Elle staff seems to have missed the entire fashion story here… Katharine Hepburn’s look wasn’t, as they say, about “demure dresses and menswear-inspired shapes.” It was about refined femininity and very fine tailoring. I don’t think a single piece shown here (save for, perhaps, the Paule Ka dress) would please either actress Hepburn or costumer Adrian.

Elle: Philadelphia Story

Elle: Philadelphia Story

In at #3, is A Hard Day’s Night. I would have thought there’s be more truly mod looks here, but…

Elle: A Hard Day's Night

Elle: A Hard Day's Night

Casablanca is in at #2, and I am under-whelmed.

Elle: Casablanca

Elle: Casablanca

Elle Shops #1 fashion film story is The Wizard Of Oz. I don’t know where to begin here… I think they’ve taken great liberties with the look & feel of the film. And what on earth is up with all the unappealing tie-dye-esque stuff on the far right?

Elle: The Wizard Of Oz

Elle: The Wizard Of Oz

Now it’s your turn — do you agree with me, or with Elle?

Free Hair Goodies You Can’t Wait To Win (Though You May Have To…)

By , 6 November, 2009, 1 Comment

The December issue of Marie Claire features some fabulous hair accessories in their Free For You, Strike Up The Bands feature:

Marie Claire: Strike Up The Bands

Marie Claire: Strike Up The Bands

I love the sparklies, of course! Who wouldn’t want the Billie Barrette comb by Stella Accessories? Sorry, couldn’t find this pretty comb or any hair comb, actually, on the site — but there’s always vintage combs with rhinestones!

I’d prefer to win the incredible Jennifer Behr Double Crystal Headwrap!

Jennifer Behr Double Crystal Headwrap

Jennifer Behr Double Crystal Headwrap

I have nothing like it, but I have pinned rhinestone necklaces into my hair every now and then… Mostly for holiday parties, but not exclusively so.

To enter, you’re supposed to go to marieclaire.com/freeforyou — but that page is still featuring November’s giveaways — so you’ll have to wait a bit, yet, to enter. (Doesn’t mean you can’t enter the other ones while you wait!)  If you’re impatient, just go buy these pretty hair accessories now — my guess is they’ll be plenty picked over by holiday.

Vintage 101 With Cameron Silver In Marie Claire

By , 18 August, 2009, No Comment

Packaged along with my September issue of Marie Claire magazine was a special shopping supplement which included a “vintage 101” with Cameron Silver, owner of Decades, vintage boutiques in Los Angeles and London.

Cameron Silver's Vintage 101 Tips In Marie Claire

Cameron Silver's Vintage 101 Tips In Marie Claire

Favorite Quote: In response to “Why go vintage?” Silver starts his reply with, “The irony is that vintage is actually what all of the new stuff in stores is made to look like anyway.”

Boy, do I agree!

In fact, Silver & agree on many things, such as costume jewelry being the best way to “wet your feet” with vintage shopping, where to find vintage, and not to wear vintage from head-to-toe or it looks like a costume.

Yet Silver sort of annoys me when he says, “A tailor is more important than your shrink!” I think the reason so many fashion experts talk about tailors is that they think we all can afford them; but until there’s some sort of insurance that covers alterations that I can get through hubby’s work insurance… Well, hell, the mental health coverage for shrinks is slim enough; I won’t push my luck!

But I do wish the fashion folks wouldn’t keep acting as if we all can afford tailors, let alone have one on retainer.

PS Marie Claire loves Twolia too!

Vintage Inspired Hats

By , 17 December, 2008, No Comment

Bust magazine announced in their December/January ’09 issue that hats are back, saying in “Hats For Lasses: Craft Your Own Beau Chapeau”:

Headgear is back in a big way, especially fascinators (small headpieces often adorned with feathers), first popular in the early 20th century, and pillbox hats, a classy staple of the early 60’s.

Hats For Lasses Feature In Bust Magazine

Hats For Lasses Feature In Bust Magazine

And then they gave us easy & inexpensive to make instructions for making them — while I prefer actual vintage pieces, I totally recognize that there is always the need to make the perfect hat to complete your ensemble. So go for it!

Instructions For Making Vintage Looking Hats by Callie Watts

Instructions For Making Vintage Looking Hats by Callie Watts