Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Premiere Issue: The Gainesville Style

I'm proud to announce that The Gainesville Style will be releasing their premiere issue on October 1st, just a few days away!

I'm more than anticipating getting my hands on the final product. The epitome of satisfaction is seeing the hours, days, weeks and months of hard work put into a publication come to fruition.

In this issue I have had the honor of having a couple blurbs of my writing included within the pages of the periodical and received the ultimate compliment of being featured as the cover model!

Congrats to the everyone involved with The Gainesville Style! I've had a blast working with the team so far and look forward to many more successful issues in the future.

PLEASE check out the issue! Oct. 1st

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Finally! Front Row Fashion at Tampa Bay

Surprisingly, for someone who adores fashion as much as I do, it was just yesterday that I got to attend my first live fashion show! It's not that I've never been to one, but I'm usually on the runway rather than in the audience. And I do have to say there's a lot less stress in the front row than there is backstage...still, a part of me was missing the bright lights in my face and nervous anxiety of stepping foot on the catwalk.

But I digress, the real reason I'm blogging tonight is to present some of the local talent that South/Central Florida has to offer. So here's a look at some the artistry coming out of Tampa Bay. 

(My apologies for the blurry pics, but I had to use my phone!)

Triniece Cagua for JCagua Swimwear:
I've actually walked for Triniece before and not only are her designs fun and sassy! She's a great designer with a wonderful personality to add to the talent. Her collection this year was bright and playful, focusing on an "Aquaglow" theme.

One of the looks from JCaguas "Aquaglow" collection
Final line-up of the girls for JCagua

Nina Verklas for Bambina NV:
I had never actually seen Nina's work until this show and I was honestly blown away! I would've never expected such an edgy, punk-rock collection complete with chains, leather and studs from the quirky designer who never goes without her black bow-tie. Can't wait to see more from her!

A funky-fresh look from Verklas' menswear collection
Helen Gerro:
Also a new designer to me. Her collection was comprised of floor sweeping gowns in a rainbow of colors and fabrics, some with handpainted VanGogh-reminiscent swirls near the hem. Of all the colors though, this piece stood out from the rest of the collection because of it's classic lines and the combination of velvet and lace

Pat McGhee:
I am somewhat familiar with McGhee's work and saw a guest at the event sporting one of her designs. I was most impressed with her collection in 2008, but this years spin on the military/naval trend kept me interested. The piece below was my favorite; loving the plaid.

Kimberly Hendrix for K Hendrix:
It's always exciting to see a collection from a designer that I'm unfamiliar with because there's no expectations, just a clean slate to form an opinion. The collection at K Hendrix kept me glued to catwalk! This was her runway debut and maybe it was all the sequins, but I couldn't take my eyes off the pieces coming down her runway. Each handmade, vintage inspired, meticulously detailed look had me fixated.

These photos do no justice to Hendrix work in real-life

Essence Flowers:
I have also walked for Essence (in her own first runway show in 2007) and her talent in undeniable. Her construction is flawless and her designs are nothing less than incredible. Always elegant and always perfectly feminine. This year's collection featured bridal-like headpieces and a very soft palette of pastel pinks and taupe (a little something blue).

Something old, something NEW, something borrowed, something BLUE
INTERESTING FACT: All of the girls who walked for Essence Flowers are Tampa Bay Buccaneers Cheerleaders! Essence re-designed their uniforms for this season.

Terri Funaro:
Another designer who was new to me. Unfortunately, I don't have pictures from this collection because my phone decided to die, but the photos wouldn't do the looks any justice anyway! Terri's collection was classic and full of incredible details: brilliant pleating work on an ice blue ensemble and again on a delightfully chocolate cocktail dress, embellished bodices on wedding gowns and flawless tailoring on my favorite piece- a blousy white top partnered with a handsome pair of HIGH-waist wide-led champagne trousers.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

London Time!

 First, I just have to get this off my chest: I absolutely hated the shoes from Fashion East...they look like something my dad would wear on vacation. Call me old-fashioned but I love a high-heel.

Now that that's out of the way, here's my rundown of some standout designers from London Fashion Week:
Meadham Kirchoff- a whimsical, yet perverse, marriage of a gothic easter bunny to a naughty Alice in Wonderland. This collection definitely brought life, energy and theatrics to the LFW stage.

Mary Katrantzou- Dainty and yet still daring;  like a housewife gone mad with lampshades, chandeliers and curtains.

Burberry = love. The perfect integration of bad-ass with femininity. THE collection of London Fashion Week, but that's just my opinion, of course.

Christopher Kane- The most energizing color palette! LOVED the shoes.

Giles Deacon- Interesting poodle-puffed headpieces, but enjoyed the colors and I always love a good juxtaposition, like glammed-up sneakers and mini-dresses.

Sass & Bide- I'm always a fan of hardware and statement necklines. Both of which were present in this collection.  I REALLY was impressed with the strength of these pieces.

Matthew Williamson- Yes please! I'd like to pack this collection up and carry it with me for the rest of my life. I'm a sucker for fringe and shine, but not only that I felt that this collection was so complete I could actually make a wardrobe out of it. Kudos Mr. Williamson!

Interesting fact: Although I still, of course, have not had the opportunity to watch everything I did notice a few full-figured models on more than one of London catwalks...hmmm

Monday, September 20, 2010

NYFW Highlights

So I STILL haven't even had the chance to watch all of the shows and look at all the reviews, but here are just a few of the moments that I enjoyed from NYFW...! Left me breathless and speechless, this collection speaks for itself.
I couldn't pick just one favorite at Marchesa

I loved the working girl meets weekend chic attitude at DKNY. From blazers paired with swimsuits to blouses casually tied at the waist, the collection was a perfect manifestation of what Spring fashion should be. I equally enjoyed the Donna Karan collection; it was so beautiful and such a womanly collection that it makes me want to be the woman that those clothes were designed for. The subdued palette drew all the attention to the detail, lines and body of the pieces in all their glory.

Workday-meets-weekend at DKNY

Floaty neutrals at Donna Karan

Thank you Marc Jacobs for the drama that I long for! Big hair, dark eyes, flashy fabrics and really drew me in, plus the music and lighting really made the show. I can honestly say that I would wear every single look that I saw coming down the runway; it's the collection of my dreams.
Show-stopping shine at Marc Jacobs

Michael Kors shows was so light and refreshing. His S/S 2011 collection epitomized the essence of comfy-cool-chic.
Cool, calm and collected and Michael Kors

Surprisingly the looks that I loved just a little less came from two designers that I absolutely adore. The girls at Rodarte had me a little confused, while I love the idea of mixing shapes and patterns, I'm not quite sure how I feel about their peculiar silhouettes or sporting those woodgrain skirts. Nevertheless, I love the Mulleavy girls just the same.

Woodgrain ensemble at Rodarte

I was also left just a tad underwhelmed after Proenza Schouler's presentation. Although the collection was no-doubt a beautiful presentation of femininity and subtle sensuality, it was just a little too demure for my taste. I did love the statement necklaces and fluro-pops of color though!

Lady-like at Proenza Schouler 

I also noticed a pattern throughout the week of mussed hair and bare faces. Maybe it's the fact that I grew up under the wing of a professional make-up artist mother, but I look forward to the high-drama hair and make-up to complement the trends.

I could honestly blather on for pages about other collections that I loved (Vera Wang, Nanette Lepore, Thakoon, Oscar de la Renta, Betsey Johnson...) but I don't have the web space for that. 

Now, on to London! 

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Long Live McQueen

As London Fashion Week begins, I can't help but reflect on the absence of a designer who made such a statement in industry that he will be ever-revered and undeniably-missed.

I wrote this piece about McQueen early this year as a review for THE PATRIOT PRESS (The College of Central Florida's student newspaper). Just wanted to re-post it in memory, if you were a fan of McQueen please take a moment to take a look.

Runway, not reality

Designers like Alexander McQueen use clothing as art

Arts/entertainment editor
Published: Sunday, January 17, 2010
Updated: Sunday, January 17, 2010 18:01

ugly shoes
photo provided
Alexander McQueen imitates animals with shoes
There is a fine line between genius and insanity, and it is one that British designer, Alexander McQueen, tight rope walks every season in the fashion industry.
With concepts conjured up from the corners of a mind that most people would find absurd, McQueen conveys these thoughts in a surreal presentation transforming the bewildering to breathtaking.
No stranger to the avant-garde style of design, some past collections from this designer have been inspired by everything from birds, to skulls and even clowns. McQueen’s spring/summer 2010 line-up is a prime example of his twisted artistry and out-of-the-box ideas.
This season’s muse: Plato’s Atlantis. Models floated down the runway in looks reminiscent of sea monsters and reptiles.
Dresses and suits made of fabric similar to shark skin were cut away to expose views of flowing watercolors, and 10-inch heels were encrusted in bubbly sequins. Hair styles mimicked dorsal fins, and the models faces were altered with prosthetic alien-esque pieces on the brow and cheekbones.
Although these styles may not be wearable by everyone (or anyone in some cases), there is more to the fashion industry than plain old functionality. Which is an important point to novice style-watchers and something that I feel is often misunderstood by the on-lookers of the fashion industry.
The looks showcased on the runways are not meant to be taken literally, especially in McQueen's case. I doubt that he intends to see women traipsing around imitating sea creatures and extraterrestrials.
Rather, it has more to do with a trickle-down theory. The trends are exaggerated for the sake of showmanship on the stage, and it is up to the individual’s personal style sense to interpret these styles and make them practical.
Also, McQueen and many other designers often use their art to communicate more than just the recent trends to the audience.
In a recent press release, it was stated that “McQueen was casting an apocalyptic forecast of the future ecological meltdown of the world. Humankind is made up of creatures that evolved from the sea, and we may be heading back to an underwater future as the ice cap dissolves.”
Just as dance, theater and fine arts contribute to culture and society, fashion, as crazy as it may seem is just as equal as a contributor. There is so much more to fashion than what meets the eye. It runs much deeper than aesthetics and materialism.
So the next time you are flipping through a fashion magazine, and start thinking of words like “crazy”, “insanity”, or “madness”, consider instead “brilliance”, “masterpiece” or “expression”.

Tsk, Tsk...

I've been a bad little blogger...slacking, I know.

I'm ashamed that it's been almost a week since I last posted. Unfortunately I've been feeling a little under the weather, but I have been making good use of my time catching up on all the shows that I missed during New York Fashion Week.

The next blog on my agenda (which will more than likely be up by tomorrow) will most definitely be my highlights from Fashion Week!

Stay tuned! ;)

P.S.- I hope I'll be lucky enough to catch some highlights from London Fashion Week for an upcoming entry as well!

Sunday, September 12, 2010

I [heart] technology

Live streams have been my saving grace this week. 

As I sit here getting ready to watch the live stream on DKNY on Facebook, all I can do is thank my lucky stars for the technology that time has brought us. Transforming the fashion industry from an elitist society to...well, a little less elitist society.

Still, having the opportunity to grab a virtual front row seat is good enough for me. And until I make it to my first NYFW I'll be taking full advantage of the technological tools I have at hand; from the live streams to the TwitPics to text messages from friends fortunate to be there live.

Who knows, in the next few years we might have the comfort of enjoying a runway hologram from our very out couch...but hopefully by then I'll have my own REAL front-row seat ;)

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Love Letters

I've never been a fan of long-distance relationships...

Especially when that distance is 1,000 miles between me and fashion. As a Floridian, New York Fashion Week is a distant dream. While I'm down here at work or at school, thousands of fashion fans and MVPs are basking in the resplendence of the runways; some of them even friends of mine! And through them (and TWITTER) I've been living vicariously, waiting with baited breath for the next update.

Sure, I can tune in to the live streams (and I have), but it's just not the same. Fashion is one of those things that can be admired from afar but can only be truly appreciated in all its glory up close and personally. To follow the lines of the seams with adoring eyes, to feel the BUZZ of catwalk chaos electrify your spirit, to hear to torrents of chatter fall silent as a show begins, these are the things that fashionistas long for.

Someday I'll have a date with Fashion Week that will mark the beginning of a beautiful relationship. And when that day comes it'll be long-term rather than long-distant.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Fashion Foreplay...

that's what the FNO fashion show was for me this evening...Now that I've had a taste, I'm only left lusting for more, more, MORE

I sat in bed with eyes as big as frisbees glued to the laptop screen. With my Twitter application on standby I was counting down the seconds more eagerly than New Years Eve. And then I took it all in... at least as much as I possibly could in the "wham, bam, thank you ma'am" presentation of the show. But I don't mind a fashion quickie, especially as a prelude to the much-anticipated shows coming up within the next week.

Andre Leon Talley and Hanneli Mustaparta led the evening's affairs as host and hostess of the event. ALT was, of course, his usual ferociously fashionable self, but I was a little disappointed in Hanneli's anchoring skills (she did look gorgeous in that Proenza Schouler dress, though!)

The Lincoln Center was a genius choice of venue for a show like this; the concentric design of the runway left my head spinning in ecstasy. The dramatic parade of the models began as they arrived in style on a Fashion's Night Out double-decker bus. Led by Gisele, models poured onto the runway one after another in a dizzying fashion (no pun, really) and filled the Center with looks of tartan in tweed, military chic, nomadic whimsy, 50s sophistication and jazz-age cool. 

And to polish off the evening, a surprise performance by Pharell; who then led Naomi Campbell (in a stunning gold-sequined Oscar de la Renta gown) in the finale walk back to a bus full of frolicking models.

I'll definitely be combing over the Vogue website tomorrow to see the detailed profiles for each of the looks shown tonight. 
Call me a fashion whore, but I just can't get enough.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

It's my party and I'll BUY if I want to!

As a September baby, I like to believe it was meant to be. 
Dare I say destined for me to have a life in the fashion industry. 
Every September means another year of life, for me of course, but also for fashion. A month filled with fashion weeks, sparkling new collections, fresh-faced models and both up-and-coming and venerated designers. Since the establishment of FNO in 2009, September has now also become a nationwide, actually global, celebration of style. The September issue of every fashion magazine (sometimes weighing in at almost 3 pounds) is probably the most coveted issue of the year by style addicts, especially after "The September Issue" documentary of 2007.
I've never been big on birthdays, but I certainly don't mind a month of festivities in the name of fashion. So, forget a birthDAY, I'd rather spend the MONTH honoring fashion! 

Monday, September 6, 2010

CURRENT OBSESSION: Military Trend for Fall

Commanding attention year after year, the military trend is back with a vengeance. This fall, the craze has made an unavoidable presence on the runways.

And for me the color palette is what lingers well after the catwalks have cleared. While perusing the racks this season I've found myself attracted to nothing but khakis and olives of every shade.

 Trend salute:
 Christophe Decarnin for BALMAIN for exemplifying this fall favorite!

Tomorrow: The FNO show on CBS

I can't wait to tune in to CBS tomorrow night at 7 and soak in the kick-off fashion show to NYCs Fashion Night Out! 

I would kill to be in NY for this whole month!

Here's a sneak peek of what to expect from FNO-The Show this year:

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Holy Matrimony

Ahhh, high fashion at my fingertips! Lanvin and H&M have made my week...This could quite possibly be THE collaboration of the year the century. As the stars align this fall, the number one design house on my fashion lust list will enter a divine romance with my number one "frugal-ista" one-stop shop. Due to hit stores the week of Thanksgiving (November 23 to be exact), it's gonna be one heck of a Black Friday at H&Ms across the country. And it might just take the hand of God to control the devout fashion die-hards that will be wrapped around the blocks, ready to bum-rush storefronts. Either way, it doesn't get much better than this; a match made in fashion heaven!

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Behind the scenes:

Here's a quick behind-the-scenes peek of the photo shoot that I did this past Sunday for The Gainesville Style (online fashion magazine):
Inspired by the Lady Gaga "Telephone" music video, the concept was awesome and the whole experience was a blast! I met some amazing new people and realized how much I really miss modeling.
Keep an eye out for the release of the latest Gainseville Style issue on October 1st