Monday, January 30, 2012

Mary Katrantzou for Long Champ

French handbag line Long Champ has always defined quality, class, luxury and simplicity, whose target customer is a sleek fashionista who won't exactly be caught in studded Louboutin platforms or a slick neon leather jacket. That type of girl is whimsical, adventurous and daring when it comes to fashion. That type of girl would not be afraid to sport the type of clothing that up and coming designer Mary Katrantzou creates. But not every girl is quite so adventurous with colors and bold prints. So what do you get when you combine a classic, pristine signature bag and a wildly experimental fashion designer?

Mary Katrantzou is a london based designer who has recently been thrusted into the limelight of fashion with her etherial clothing and signature digital prints. Her revolutionary aesthetic, which is purely fearless of any previous confinements or moderation sculpted in the fashion industry, and her fresh take on high fashion has made fashion junkies drool over her collections. If you've picked up a copy of any fashion magazine within the past year or so, you've seen her. Something about those prints is so magical, exciting, whimsical, yet effortlessly chic. Now if you pick up any glossy fashion magazine, you'll most likely spot some of  her unmistakable designs.
Kate Moss,  who is the epitome of effortless cool-girl-chic has previously collaborated with Long Champ. The classic French line has a more classic reputation which typically features a narrow collection of simple, muted colors that are beginning to fade away in comparison of this upcoming seasons new sweet spot for bright, bold prints and neon colors. A collaboration with a designer like Katrantzou is a smart choice on their part, and proves that Long Champ does intact a little sister with a more youthful, adventurous look. The whimsical, ethereal, almost even trippy prints Mary Katrantzou are known for can now be pared down in an assortment of bags and totes that still pack a bright punch.  Upon meeting with Sophie Delafontaine, Longchamp's artistic director, "about a year ago to discuss the possibility of working together for the label's spring/summer 2012 collection...She had seen my work and thought it would be a great collaboration for both. It was a really great opportunity for us to work with a brand with great heritage and I loved that it's family run. Their Pliage and tote bags are the perfect canvas to engineer a print and it's also great to offer women who might not be ready to commit to a fully printed look, a bag to accessorise with!." What better canvas than something as sleek and classic as a Parisian tote bag  to splash on her unique,surreal prints and vivid colors.
The inspiration and theme for the line was "East Meets West; Katrantzou revealed she pooled a lot of her inspiration from Eastern motifs such as paper lanterns, orchids, dragons, and asian architecture.
"The prints we designed reference Vietnam temple architecture, Thomas Heatherwick's design for their Soho store, lanterns, orchids, an aquarium and many more surreal juxtapositions. I wanted to create a Mary Katrantzou world for Longchamp."
And that she did.

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Jason Wu for Target

Target, aka TargĂ© (the name I use that makes the superstore sound like a French boutique) has become known for their collaborations with emerging designs, releasing cheap-chic collections that allow fashionistas on a budget to have the label of some of the most coveted brands. Rodarte, Proenza Schouler, Thakoon… the list goes on and on. And with the success of the latest collection released by Missoni, Jason Wu is next in line.
As soon as I learned that Missoni was doing a collection for Target, I was instantly giddy. The renowned Italian line who’s known for their signature zig-zag print, caused a madhouse in both Target stores and even caused their website to crash. Shoppers fought tooth and nail over what was left. It was truly, as they refer to it, Missoni Mania.
 Next up is Jason Wu, who is known for his sleek, lady-like designs that capture feminism with an effortlessly chic aura that attracts pristine fashionistas world wide. Diane Kruger, Reese Witherspoon, and even first lady Michelle Obama are avid Wu fans. The look book has FINALLY been released, and as a girl who typically steers away from such clean-cut, feminine looks, I’m pleasantly surprised with the pieces. Adorable sundresses, pretty blouses and structured handbags are among the collection, which a mix of playful prints. The most noticeable thing about his release for Target is that all of the garments are incredibly flattering. Define your waist and lengthen your legs in flirty dresses with cinched waists adorned with playful, pastel prints. The peter-pan collar appeared on several blouses and little shifts, and a wide color pallete that ranged everywhere from a mustard yellow to fire engine red, baby blue, pale pink and cream. For the collection, Wu’s goal wasn’t to replicate his typical runway confections. Rather, he aimed to create an entirely new collection of clothing that appeals to a new customer. "My goal was not to duplicate anything from my main collection," Wu explains. "Instead I designed completely new clothes and accessories that reflect my taste and have a voice of their own."

While I’d probably be a bit more enthralled if a label like Balmain or Marc Jacobs paired up with Target, we’ll just have to wait and see who’s next. I’ll definitely consider scooping up a few pieces on my next trip to TargĂ©. A few of my picks? An adorable shift color blocked in black, red and blue stripes… a pale pink blouse tucked in to a printed high waisted skirt, and the pleated 60’s-inspired dress. Complete with sleek satchel bags and clutches and paired with black patent loafers, Jason Wu’s collection for target is simply chic, feminine and on-trend, all the while being timeless and classic. Out February 5th.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Fanning Frenzy

The Beautiful Fanning sisters are charming, youthful, innocent, exceptionally talented, mature, and stylish. And they're both under the age of 18. But move over, Dakota, and make way for your little sis!
Little Elle Fanning has slowly made her way into the limelight and has recently stepped out into the fashion industry, making waves as she has been dubbed quite possibly the most fashionable 13-year-old ever.
Now, I remember my love for fashion began to manifest itself around that age. Maybe even 11 or 12. That's when I started really noticing clothes, putting things together, learning about designers, flipping through runway photos and religiously reading all the magazines monthly. At that age I started to develop my personal style and taste and truly understanding the meaning behind fashion.
It all started in 2007, when Marc chose Dakota as the face of his ads in 2007 at the tender age of 12. in his Marc by Marc Campaigns; a bit of a controversial move because of her tender age. The idea of a sweet, innocent child actress selling high fashion in the glossy pages of magazines was a bit questionable.

But the ads were surprisingly a hit. Giving off a youthful, romantically chic feel, They gave off the idea of a little girl playing around with her mothers clothes and accessories, having fun and experimenting with fashion for the first time ever. Being the tiny pip-squeak she was, Jacob's garments were custom-made to fit the petite star. That's right. Dakota was sporting Marc Jacobs COUTURE before she even hit her teenage years.
This advertisement ploy nodded back to Calvin Klien's 1995 headline-making ads featuring a scantily clad Brooke Shields, 15, saying "nothing comes between me and my calvins." Surprisingly enough, Dakota recently stated that being the little twelve year old she was, she was not old enough to wear the clothes.

Now Elle, thirteen, is following in her sisters footsteps with a growing acting career, and has also has made her way into the fashion industry, charming Kate and Laura Mcculeavy of Rodarte, who have officially made Elle their muse. Elle starred in a short film by Rodarte for S/S 2011, featuring their Spring collection that told a story without any dialogue. (View it HERE)
 And of course Jacob couldn't resist but to use the stunning blonde thirteen year old for his F/W Marc by Marc Campaign. These ads were controversial as well, displaying Elle in sophisticated, expensive ensembles that were a far cry from middle school.
It's no question that Elle is both the fashion industry and Hollywood's new little princess. Besides gracing the cover of W with her big sis, Elle is on the February cover of Teen VOGUE and high fashion UK magazine LOVE.

I'm a huge Fanning fan, always have been, always will be. This dynamic duo isn't going anywhere soon. In fact, Dakota is just turning 18 next month, meaning a whole new line of work for her and an entirely new stage in her career. 
Gracing the February cover of Cosmopolitan, Dakota is making headlines for this new  version of her on a magazine that is, well, all about SEX ;) 
I was shocked today to see that they would chose Dakota, but in a way it makes sense. Of course the public is going to react in awe and dislike for this new image, but we must face the facts. Hollywood's little princess is growing up and as she (appropriately) turns 18 next month, it's about time we take Dakota by the hand and welcome her to the world of womanhood. "Welcome to your Cosmo years, Dakota." Cheers!