"you'd be surprised how much it cost to look this cheap."
Wednesday, February 28, 2007
When I said that I avoided fashion week whilst in Milan, I lied--just a tad. As I walked by the TAD boutique in Milan, I was surprised to see it open at 10 pm. This was on February 15th, right around the start of Milan's shows. The store was like the love child of Barneys New York and Urban Outfitters. There were fragrances, shoes, clothes, furniture, books and a lounge--the interior was just beautiful and the way that things were displayed provided for a multisensorial shopping experience. Upon being asked why the store was open so late, the extremely chic salesman told me that they were having a party and invited me upstairs for champagne. There were plasma tv screens showing some runway footage. Everyone was superbly dressed. A woman who caught my eye was wearing all black skinny skinny jeans, a slouchy cardigan which was very low, a wonderful cameo necklace on a long chain (these are quite popular in Italy, many local artisans make them), and dove grey booties. Anyway, its funny how these things find you. Upon leaving I realized it must have been a fashion week party. Duh!
While I am self-conscious to a fault when it comes to taking some stranger's photo, I am shameless at photographing display windows. Some that caught my eye were those of Dolce & Gabbana and Moschino on my first night in Milan.
If you enlarge the last picture of the storefront of Moschino I hope that you will be as delighted with the the little girrafes on the wrap dress as I was. And how about that "Light my Fire!" t-shirt? I'm noticing a slogan trend, the House of Holland t-shirts and the eco-friendly Noir with their "Save the Future" tank tops are only the first two that come to my mind, but the list is long.
Apologies! I am so jet lagged that I have a hard time concentrating past 8 pm. Up there is a view of the street in front of Milan's famous "La Scala" opera house. Can you spot the stylophile? Walking by the theater at night was the most wonderful experience. I passed a line of ladies in furs and gowns and men wearing tuxedos. The opera is still a grand tradition in Milan. In New York, even at a venue as beautiful as the Metropolitan Opera House, there are still a few people wearing jeans and sneakers. Nothing wrong with that, we all love our casual fridays, but the gathering outside "La Scala" was a sight for sore eyes.
Diagonally across from "La Scala" are the galleries, the beautiful indoor/outdoor mall. It is covered in glass and looks somewhat like a train station.
Yes, I was in Milan during fashion week, but I was there for such a short time (and it was not the purpose of my trip!) that I did not really do any fashion-week-things. I was really interested in store windows. Here are some from inside the galleria:
The Gucci store had a cafe outside of it which was quite popular. In Rome, there was a cafe in the Cavalli store. I know that there is an Armani cafe in Boston. I don't want my scone branded, thank-you-very-much. I guess sitting there would provide for great people watching, though. The fringe craze--I don't have much to say about it. I don't really like it. But the feeling is not very strong. And turbans, OH MAN, do I love me some turban. Is it hard to wrap one out of a scarf? I assume there are many challenges involved in getting them to be so voluminous.
Hello wireless internet! I just arrived in Rome, the last leg of this trip. Although I have not been nearly as productive with my picture-taking as I promised I would be, I have some things to post as soon as I am reunited with my camera wire in Brooklyn. However, if I was in possession of said wire, here are some things I would write about at length: 1. The Prada/Miu Miu/Jil Sander outlet and factory in Montevarchi. How to get there, what to expect once you get there. And my beautiful new stuff is certainly post-worthy. 2. The outdoor mall in Milan, called the Galeria. Paris has one of these too. I have some photos of the shop windows. Speaking of which, Prada is a little fringe-purse crazy now, no? 3. The food! I have never eaten so many refined carbs in my life. Pastries for breakfast. Gelato, more pastries, chocolate. Fresh fruits and Italian yogurt (yum!). I have escaped without having any pasta (I know, I know), but have had several fresh pizzas with marinated calamari, anchovies, capers and buffalo mozzarella. And I had lamb's brains and roast pigeon with candied fruits and mustard seed while in Florence. It was truly like a Medieval banquet.
Phillip Lim post, continued. No more sulking about Narciso Rodriguez, it just wasn't meant to be. Here are two videos that I took. One is of the prosession of models and one is of Phillip Lim taking a bow at the end of the show.
I want to do one of those comprehensive posts on what has been going on in all of the shows. But there are editors who get paid loads in clothing and perks to do that work! Its kind of boring to me, actually. Who is to tell what each designer has on his or her mind when they make an entire collection? How much it has to do with the mood of the country, or the world, is questionable. It takes energy to remind oneself that these creative choices represent the aesthetic of a very small, unusually blessed part of the country. But has anyone else noticed all of the wonderful hats?! I was so excited to see the hats at the Marc Jacobs' show. Quite a change from last year's grunge. Those sheets (poor excuses for dresses) are completely losing out to this fall/winter's uptown chic frocks and coats. It's very first-lady-chic. And the structured hats in Phillip Lim--well, quite a stone's throw away from this winter's slouchy bohemian messes. It almost makes me regret just buying my new hat. Almost... I believe mine to be a tad warmer since it doesn't leave the ears exposed. And in this chilly weather, form loses out to function.
Here is the invitation to the show that I picked up from one of the seats:
Here is what was in the goody bag:
Some thread in every imaginable color, courtesy of cotton inc. A great thing for me because I am always going insane trying to mend my things with mismatching thread. And some "NARS products used to create the look for the 3.1 Pillip Lim F/W 2007 collection. Along with some longtime NARS favorites, this selection includes an exclusive sneak preaview of NARS' Fall and Holiday 2007 color collections." I can't stop using the stuff. The box included 2 lipsticks, 2 eyeshadows, a bronzer, a cheek color stick, some makeup primer.
What a twit I am. Armed with my newly arrived slouchy Rastafarian hat and wool tights from Intermix, I drove to the Narsico Rodriguez show. Seeing as it was about 2 blocks away from where the Phillip Lim 3.1 show was held, I thought it would be held in a similar endless loft that is the norm in this part of Chelsea. Oh man, I was wrong. It was small. The men at the door did not let anyone in. Even Anna Wintour's assistant was told to wait in line! Guests with passes were waiting in line as well. Some chic men and women who left their coats with their drivers were whining like babies. People were pissed. There is probably a windchill of -8 when the sun goes down in New York. It is horrendous. Fashion and cold weather do not mix. I have never seen so many boring black parkas as I have this time of the year--and it does not change at all around the tents in Bryant Park or these other places where the shows are held (give or take a few furs). Anyway, after being the first person in line, and with a great attitude to boot, I was turned away. What terrible PR! To make your guests and media wait in line for 30 minutes in the freezing cold, and to turn away aspiring whatchyamacallits like myself. Well, I will never purchase a Narsico Rodriguez thing, ever. Even when I can afford it.
in the sweetest possible way. I came, I saw and I conquered. I am just getting off of the high. I went to the Phillip Lim 3.1 show, and meekly asked to be let in for standing room. With one nod of approval, I was let into the giant brick building on West 28th St. and 11th Ave. There was a waiting room, but no one stopped me and my boy from getting out and getting some great cosmopolitans, very good champagne, and smart water. The soviet in me, that part which is always looking for a way to make the wait on the bread line go a little bit quicker, walked right up to the entrance of the runway. Anna Wintour glazed past me. What a rush! Bee Schaffer was in tow. I walked all the way to the end of the bleachers and after waiting for a polite 20 minutes, we sat down in the fourth row. I have a lot to say about the show, most of which I will say later when I post the ghetto video I took with my camera. But I will say that the collection was quite pessimistic. A very limited palette, mostly white and black with just one or two stand out pieces color-wise. There was a lot of military influence and several of the models wore Mad Hatter inspired top-hats. A man I spoke with later told me that they reminded him of Philip Tracey hats. There was also one really interesting wool coat that was like a stretched out vest. I tried to capture it. It makes me think that Mr. Lim is less than optimistic about the future of Iraq and this arrogant war. One of his dresses in the program was a "black sleeveless funeral dress". I will scan the program in when I get a chance. Here are some poor quality photos for you anyway :). More to come on the celebrities that I saw and the goody bag that I snagged. Oh, and do you see what I mean about the interesting cut of the coat on the left? Its like a long vest. Very Alice in Wonderland.
There has been a lot of hype about the latest collaboration between Target and Proenza Schouler. Recently, the entire collection leaked on Shoplocal.com, causing pandemonium amongst fans. At first it was available for 4 hours a few days ago. When word got out, Target quickly pulled the collection. Now it is available again. Except, nearly all of the best peices are already out of stock! Here are some delectable items that you'll need to go to a store to acquire because they are already unavailable online:
I am staying away from Opening Ceremony, the boutique in Soho that has cleared its merchandise just to sell the Proenza Schouler line for a few days. I have heard promises to camp out in front of the store. More luck going to the Bronx, in my opinion.
Like the dolls of many budding clotheshorses, mine were lovingly dressed in a mix of rag couture and re-adjusted barbie clothing. If only they had the expertise of Zac Posen. Well, no need to worry your pretty little head off, Barbie because the latest incarnation of the Barbie/Ken franchise will have you looking better than my stylings ever have. Except, instead of Ken, this doll comes with its own plastic Zac, plus a handbag, shoes, and the Posen studio puppy, Tina. The limited edition giftset costs a whopping $300. "Barbie doll wears a sweeping, belted violet blue gown of pleated china silk with a golden armband. Ken doll is outfitted as the quintessential designer, wearing jeans, a pintucked tuxedo shirt, and shantung silk jacket." Take a look for yourselves on the FAO Schwartz website.
In honor of the upcoming start of fashion week in New York, I went to one of Anna Wintour's gastronomical haunts, DB Bistro Moderne. I ordered the same thing that she frequently orders, the DB burger, stuffed with truffle-and-foie gras-laced short ribs, with one key difference. For $32, I didn't ask them to hold the bun. Good thing too, because the parmesan encrusted bun was delicious. I tried taking a picture of it with my camera phone but I do not know how to export it. Ah well, this online shot is way better than mine anyway. Speaking of Fashion week, are any other New Yorkers who are members of IQONS* excited about the upcoming party at Mr. Black's?
"At one point, according to Lagerfeld, Kahn set up a movie camera on a Paris street corner, and every day for ten years filmed people walking by. 'You see the houses, you see the cars--and there were few changes in ten years,' says Lagerfeld, who has viewed the footage. 'The cars changed not that much. The architecture changed not at all. But the attitude of the people changed much more, in the way they walked, in the way they dressed. So don't tell me fashion is not important."