It’s always exciting to hear the different paths that people have taken to get to the places that they are at. The same applies for when I recently met fashion accessories designer Anya Hindmarch and listened to her story of how she began the elaborate process of setting up her business. Inspiration for her collections and her tough decision to take a step back from the business side of things in order to focus more on the creative aspect of design were also topics of discussion.
When the weather has been as glum and uninspiring as it has been for the past few days pampering both belly and spirit feels extra important. As tempting as it is to spend all day in bed, I unfortunately have plenty of work that’s keeping me out of it. A healthy and hearty breakfast with plenty of fruit (nature’s candy) gets me going in combination with a warm cup of mao feng green tea and some classical opera playing in the background.
Have a wonderful day everyone!
For you fashionistas or photography buffs, this is the exhibit for you and what better setting than Chanel’s vast Tokyo Ginza store which houses it’s very own gallery space on the 4th floor in the Chanel Nexus Hall. The exhibition Signature of Elegance displays a stunning selection of black and white fashion photographs by the legendary photographer Lillian Bassman (1917-2012).
While some images oozed post WWII glamor typical of Christian Dior’s New Look, others appeared as modern as ever. Lillian Bassman’s images of furtive eroticism featuring corsets, girdles and lingerie could easily enough grace the current pages of Vogue Paris without looking out of place. And, unlike the crass, sometimes even disturbing, erotically charged images of Helmut Newton (1920-2004), Lillian Bassman applied a tasteful sensitivity to her work with the female form.
So whether or not you find yourself in Tokyo at the moment and have access to Chanel Nexus Hall, Lillian Bassman is a name well worth looking up and getting some inspiration from.
Finding the perfect hat to suit your face, personality, and style can be a challenge but a task well worth undertaking. Trying on various styles in front of a mirror at an interesting hat/milliner boutique is a good way to start but it helps to know what style you might be interested in. Be it a fedora, panama, pill box, cap, fascinator, beenie, etc. Hats are such a neglected accessory in the modern wardrobe which is truly a pity as not only are they stylish, they’re practical too. During winter they keep your head warm and during summer they protect you from the sun. P.S. They can also cover up a bad hair day, just an added bonus.
In my own search I took style inspiration from 17th century French musketeers or rather the costumes of BBC One’s new program The Musketeers. Having fallen for the character Aramis (played by Santiago Cabrera) and his stylish hat, this became my starting point. As you can see through the pictures I think I managed to get quite close to the original hat worn by Aramis (Santiago Cabrera) with my new CA4LA hat (picked up on a recent trip to Tokyo).
Apart from the hat, another accessory that I wouldn’t mind having is Aramis (Santiago Cabrera) and D’Artagnan (Luke Pasqualino) on my arms. However, if that’s not possible then I’d be able to settle for the hat, one of their leather doublets and perhaps even a rapier to put my classical fencing skills to good use. En garde!
Earlier this evening I attended an inspiring talk at Central Saint Martins featuring American designer/entrepreneur Tory Burch in conversation with Imran Amed (Business of Fashion founder and editor-in-chief) which was streamed live onto the Business of Fashion website. Talks and conversations like this covering everything from a bit of background info to success stories and struggles, personal anecdotes, questions and advice are such a treat.
Tory Burch’s background includes an art history degree from the University of Pennsylvania where upon a week after graduation she headed to New York where she began her career in fashion by working at Zoran. Following her stint at Zoran she went on to work as a sitting assistant for Harper’s Bazaar magazine then advertising and PR at Ralph Lauren, then Vera Wang and later Loewe before heading up her own fashion label which began under the name of TRB by Tory Burch. Hearing about her personal journey into the fashion industry and building her label into a billion dollar brand certainly teaches one not to be afraid of dreaming big and having the ambition to make it happen. Yikes, it’s time to get to work!
I first heard about the exhibition a year ago when lucky me spent the afternoon picking the brain of one of Gaultier’s nearest and dearest friends and colleagues. Ever since I’ve been waiting in anticipation to see the outcome of the exhibition and let me tell you it did not disappoint. So, if you find yourself in Stockholm, Sweden at the moment or in the near vicinity this is one of those exhibitions you just shouldn’t miss.
Lots of fierce and elaborate corsets were on show throughout the exhibition. My favorite corset was a sleek, tight crocodile front laced corset. Then to offset my previous choice, I also fell for a fabulous soft powder pink diva-esque corset like the one from the Gaultier fragrance.
Despite continued rainfall here in Tokyo, my sister and I ventured out into the thick, hot, wet air to visit 21_21 Design Sight where the exhibition Color Hunting directed by Dai Fujiwara is currently taking place.
The exhibition illustrates the infinite sources of color inspiration available to us through the process of “color hunting”. This design method encourages the exploration of various colors found in nature such as the sky, sea, plants and stars, or the urban environment, etc. as a starting point and to experiment with different shades and color combinations. The exhibition invites viewers to expand their horizons.
Color in Action: Blank Thermometers Scaling Memories by artist Shigeru Moroizumi. The interactive artwork consists of liquid which climbs up in reaction to human body heat when a person applies their finger to the bulb, but we do not know how much the liquid climbs because there is no measuring scale. Viewers are asked to choose a color thermometer marking where the liquid is before applying a finger to a bulb and then record where the liquid stops after a short while. They are then asked to determine what the moving colors might represent and what it means when they come to a halt. Feelings and thoughts are encouraged to be recorded next to the thermometer.
The building itself and the exhibition space of 21_21 Design Sight is absolutely stunning! I’m in love with the raw grey cement walls and floor in combination with the razor sharp cut glass, asymmetrical design and warm mood lighting. I’m ready to move in on a permanent basis!
Saatchi gallery, often known for it’s preference towards shock art pleasantly surprised me this time with its exhibition entitled Paper. What a neat idea having an exhibition with the theme being the material in which the art is made of and in this case it’s paper. Having done quite a bit of origami myself in the past, I know the pros and cons of working with such a fragile, lightweight material and was therefore extra curious to see how various artists decided to tackle this challenge.
Japanese artist Yuken Teruya used something as ordinary and readily available as recycled paper shopping bags to construct a series of works such as this “Golden Arch Parkway” from a fast food McDonald’s paper bag.
Now I realize that I may be little late to the party (just a couple of decades) in my new found interest towards the British BBC television series Blackadder with Rowan Atkinson but I simply couldn’t contain my excitement in sharing this absolute gem of a show. It reminds me of the 1999 tv-series Let Them Eat Cake! which was set in the Palace of Versailles in 1782 with the hilarious duo Jennifer Saunders playing a comtesse and Dawn French acting as her faithful maid at court.
The character Blackadder, played by funnyman Rowan Atkinson serves as personal butler to actor Hugh Laurie playing the part of a foppish numskull Prince George during the 19th century regency era and the third installment of the series which I have just completed a mini marathon of. The show is full of dark humor, slightly ridiculous plots, quite fabulous costumes and simple, effective mise en scène. I’d love to be Hugh Laurie’s character in this still reclining on the day bed, preferably as well dressed and with the addition of some macaroons and bubbly on a silver tray next to me!