Friday, May 29, 2009

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Teller Tells Tate

There is a great article in the New York Times today about the un-retouching movment that is brewing in pop fashion photography, and Jeurgen Teller was mentioned as one of the snappers who has always kept things real.

Back in 1999, before reality TV was an overwrought cliche, Teller did a groundbreaking project where he photographed every wannabe model who banged on his door with her portfolio in hand and a dream of superstardom in mind. With little direction to the girls and no retouching, the shots expose the grit and desperation of the beauty business. I've always loved the series, (which can be yours in a great book called Go-Sees) and Teller's thoughts behind the project are just as interesting as the shots in the book. In this video from the TateShots series, Teller talks about the power of the male photographer in the fashion biz and even plays a little table tennis.

I love when he mentions seeing the girls changing from trainers into heels on the corner of his street just before they rang him up. Artifice is always in action, no matter how little retouching is happening.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Common Goods: A Luv-A-Fair To Remember

Luv-A-Fair was one of the birthplaces of the New Wave era in the '80s, that movement of music and fashion that had all the cool kids painting their faces, ratting their hair, and tearing their fishnets. It was a legendary night club in Vancouver that spawned and fostered some of the era's biggest musical acts, like Nina Hagen, Sonic Youth, Violent Femmes, The Cure, and many more. The club closed its doors in 2003, but the party lives on on the Luv-A-Fair's photostream on Flickr.

Technically they aren't part of The Commons, but man the snaps of all that '80s gaudy, garish, craziness certainly are good.

Ankles Away.

Coco Rocha rockin' her ankles on The Sartorialist.

A new fashion highlight zone has arrived this summer. It's the ankle. I'm sure many of you have been a fan of the thinnest part of your legs for a nice, long time, but fervent ankle adoration has reached a fever pitch of late. The City streets are filled with rolled pants cuffs shortened just so they reveal that sexy, sinewy spot. There are also a plethora of cute little flats with ankle ties, straps, and other adornments in shop windows and on all the hip kids.

Chinese Laundry flats from, $59.95

While the ankle strap shoe is certainly a holdover from the gladiator sandal trend, it is a pleasant, slightly more sophisticated break from those ubiquitous, buckle-happy, leg-climbers. Here are some hipper-than-thou (or perhaps not hipper than you!) ankle fans snapped by The Sartorialist.

The thing about ankles is that most ladies have gorgeous ones. I know, I know, there are some of you who insist that you have dreaded cankles, but mostly this is a very forgiving, flattering feature on women. So decorate those ankles, show 'em off, and strut 'em proudly. Me and my big girl thighs couldn't be happier about this trend! I love showing a little leg, as long as it's close to my foot...ha.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Belly Up.

If only time travel were really possible, I'd be in the middle of this belly dancing scene from an old Egyptian movie in a minute. Or, however long it takes to time travel.

That '70s sparkle is just perfect for the belly shaking.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

One More Thing Before I Go...

Why should Wintour be warm anyway?

I just watched the 60 Minutes piece on Anna Wintour, and I have to throw my two cents into the fire. Wintour is the head of the most influential, successful, widely known fashion magazine in the world. I really think that all comments regarding her bitchy, cold, wintry persona are quite sexist. Normally I'm of the overly optimistic crowd who hopes that everyone acts like they gently consume rays of sunshine and rainbows for breakfast, but in the fast-paced, high-stakes game of the media business, there isn't room for cozy, maternal, gentleness. Heard any male CEOs held to standards of warmth lately? I haven't.

Watch Anna's episode here, in case you missed it.

I admire Wintour for her shrewd, quick, decisiveness, and think it is well within the demands of her job. She runs an empire built on image and the assertion of her taste as the taste to have, and she succeeds. I like to poke fun at her persona as much as the next fashion fan, but underneath the teasing is true admiration and respect. I mean every hair on her head is in place, she wears runway-fresh Prada to work, and she keeps a team of stilettoed, skinny chicks scurrying through the Conde Nast hallways as if their lives depended on it, because well, they do. It's impressive. I wouldn't enjoy having to be that tightly wound all the time, but she seems to like it. And she's damn good at her job. Truth be told, I found her surprisingly smiley in the interview portions of the piece. At work it was a different story, as it usually is in business. In the end I say save the expectations of kid gloves for caretakers, give Wintour her feirceness and let her do her job. Just don't expect me to want to work for her-which I say with all due respect, Ms. Wintour!

Ok, Jamaica! Here I come!

Jamaica Me Happy. Very Happy.

I'm off to here:

That's Negril Jamaica. I know. I'm very excited. It's a family trip for my Pop's 50th. Should be equal parts fun, sun, and craziness.

I found the site Irie Diva that shows some street style images from Jamaica:

Easy, breezy. I've got my bathingsuit packed and my toes painted. I'm looking forward to a lot of sunshine and blue water. I'll be back after a week. Miss you already!


Allegiance to Alaia

When The Met's new show Model as Muse opened recently, it's organizers caught some flack for their exclusion of the work of Azzedine Alaia, who has been known for his close relationships with models throughout his wonderful career. I just stumbled upon a vintage Alaia profile that could be submitted as evidence in a court of law to prove his claim of shafting.

Alaia claims that editrix Anna Wintour had most to do with his absence from the show, and that her say and opinions have too much influence over the museum's choices. I wonder what Alaia did to upset The Wintour. Maybe Morley Safer will ask her about it on 60 Minutes tonight. (can't hardly wait)
PS: I love Naiomi's eyebrows in that video.

Friday, May 15, 2009

The Virign Ressurections.

Jeffrey Eugenides' debut novel, The Virgin Suicides, is rising again with a beautifully covered reissue.

The book is a must read, with its darkly intriguing tale of the Lisbon girls- five perfectly unattainable and ethereal creatures that also happen to be sisters, and the fixed obsession of a group of fascinated, neighborhood boys who are on a mission to find out how to save the girls from themselves. The novel was made into a soft-lit, excellently soundtracked debut film by Sofia Coppola that deserves a re-view as well.

The film is dreamy, light, floaty, and also dark and urgent; it is so many things. When I first saw the film when it was new, I think I was a little too green behind the ears to appreciate its full delicate but indelible impact. Now I'm loving it. Here's part of the film:

Sofia's styling of the girls is a perfect match for the resurgence of soft, flowery things that have been floating down city streets this spring. Tea cozy worthy florals spun into dresses, skirts, light-as-air sheer tops. It's a little Lux Lisbon rebirth.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Glamorous Girlfriend

Anna Wintour's 60 Minutes segment is coming on Sunday! Here's a taste for the impatient.

I love seeing Grace Coddington and Andre Leon Talley around the same conference table. I cannot wait. Can. Not. Wait.

Common Goods: Retro Drugstore Stock

These pics from Flickr are of vintage drugstore shelves circa 1970. I have a fetish for photos and film footage of store shelves, especially grocery stores, but these shots put drugstores in a close second spot. I think it's something about the lighting and all of the repetition. I wish someone would have preserved a store of this era and in this condition so I could take a gaga-eyed stroll down its aisles, but for now I'll settle for these excellent photos.

Beauty products.

Laundry soap.

Feminine hygene products.

More fem products.

Cleaning products. Love those glove boxes!

Full On Style

Hi readers, your fearless leader (that would be me) has joined forces with a new partner in crime, the lovely Beka Mercurio of reLYME, to bring you tales from fuller-figured fashion fans. We've started Full On Style, a site that speaks directly to the curvier girl about issues of style, life, know, everything. Here I am talking about a little something I call The Rub. This is potentially very embarrassing, but I am fearlessly going there for the good of bigger girls everywhere! Maybe you can relate? Oh, lord...

Y'all check the site out. When you get a chance! Let me know what you think.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Remember That?: Gently, With a Chainsaw.

I kind of want to dress like this. I kind of want the whole world to dress like this.

Click above to watch the Heathers in sweet, nostalgic, '80s-decked action. It's amazing.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

And She's Cute to Boot.

Ummm, watch this!

That's Theresa Andersson doing her best 8-person band impression and succeeding with high friggin' flying colors. I'm so impressed, and look how cute she is:

I love her enthused moves, and that black and white flowery dress above is now on my list. Also, her mother knitted her those wrist warmers in the photo on the left out of wool from her native Sweden. Theresa now lives in New Orleans and makes all her music in her kitchen, as evidenced by the video above. The fact that she performs this craziness live is so cool. I'm gonna keep my eyes out for a local performance. I'll let you know when she's near.

March Me to the Marche

This poster for the Vintage Fashion Market in Lyon makes me want to book a flight to France now. En ce moment.

The market is an annual event hosted by the Fashion University of Lyon and looks like an amazing time. It's a flea market with a twist, which is that it is in Lyon, which automatically makes it cooler than anything I could easily attend stateside. That's just my grass-is-greener opinion. Here's photos from last year's fair as evidence:

This year's festivities happen on May 30 and 31 and I wanna go. Who's with me? Well, I seriously could just settle for looking at that amazing poster for a few hours. I love it.

Monday, May 11, 2009

We Interupt This Fashion Broadcast for an Important Message from The President

Although Mr. President looks darn fine in this here video from his White House Correspondents Dinner speech, fashion is not the focus of this post. Instead, I'm posting it because if you didn't see it, you have to watch it and fall in love with our Prez all over again. He's so funny and cute, and powerful, and...hmmm I'll stop there.

Love him. Gobama.

Ok, back to the fashion, biotches.

Leaf Through This

God bless Taschen books. Besides for providing the world with some of the most phenomenal fashion publications of all time, their website has this mindblowingly good feature where you can leaf through some of their ginormous tomes one page at a time. It is beyond wonderful. Here, give it a try with the amazing new 576 page Valentino: A Grand Italian Epic:

So yeah, I miss the feel of the paper on my fingertips, and the smell of the photo pages, and the sounds they make when they turn, but I'll get over it.

Friday, May 08, 2009

Up To Bat

Bat for Lashes was on Letterman the other night. Musical Experience leader Natasha Khan rocked some sort of tutued, feathered neckdress and some silverleaf, metallic blush/eyeshadow. Impressive. You know what else is impressive? Her lovely, whispery voice. It agitates some sort of feeling center in me that immediately makes me want to cry a little in a greatly cathartic kind of way, in a pleasant "let it out" kind of way. Here, see if that happens to you:

Well? Do you need a tissue? Ok, if not, see if this does it: The song "Daniel" that Bat performs is an ode to Daniel LaRusso. No? That's The Karate Kid. Daniel-san. Wax on, wax off.

I love me some quirky songstresses. They make my world go 'round. I'm a fan of Bat's weird. I find it very visually satisfying. Here's another trippy taste of The Karate Kid crusher in action. Watch as she runs around Joshua Tree Park to a soundtrack of tunes from her latest album, Two Suns:

It's like Bjork and Stevie Nicks communed with nature and created a new being. I can so imagine that happening.

Thursday, May 07, 2009

Norma Kamali Is Beautiful.

I love these photos of Norma Kamali from an article in yesterday's New York Times.

The woman has been hard at work designing sleeping bag coats and studded beach wear for over three decades, and she still looks this gorgeous. I hate to give a lady's age, but she should be exceedingly proud of her well-lived 63 years! Her secrets? Discipline, workouts, green tea and weekly tai chi sessions in Central Park with her staff.

I have never seen a more chic tai chi student. Seriously, Norma, you are amazing!

Read the whole article (and see more great photos) at