Subconscious Obsession: Turtlenecks

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tumblr_n6lijiBPbr1rf4nooo1_1280 IMG_8643 Le-Fashion-Blog-Copenhagen-Street-Style-Emma-Elwin-Ray-Ban-Wayfarers-Oversized-Turtleneck-Sweater-Red-Clutch-Via-Malmo-Street-Style.jpg~original tumblr_inline_nnod4binDM1tq0qkl_500 main.original.585x01235 tumblr_m7oikf4jlG1rbeyrao1_500 turtleneck-1-682x1024 turtle3Turtlenecks are a part of my daily wardrobe these days. They’re classic and feminine, and are super warm so they make great substitutes for scarves. Turtlenecks are also a huge trend item at the moment, and have been for a few seasons (part and parcel of the whole 70s trend). I’m still not sure if something this simple and cozy could really be a trend item, but who even cares because it looks great on everybody and goes with everything.

Images via Tumblr

Go Big or Go Home

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Most people don’t know this about me: I have one split earlobe. As a young’un starting out in university, I harboured an unhealthy obsession with big, colourful ear baubles. So fervent was my devotion, I didn’t even notice when my left earlobe eventually gave out from years of daily wear. After that I vowed to only wear teeny tiny studs….that is, until now.

But of course the oversized earrings that have caught my attention lately aren’t anything like the tacky pieces I wore nearly a decade ago. Being older and wiser and with better taste, nowadays I prefer bold, minimal pieces in solid gold or silver. Céline is perhaps the most well-known dealer of these notice-me accessories. Lucky for us more modestly-salaried individuals, you can buy really beautiful knock-offs from, where else, Zara. They’re the tear-dropped beauties 5th from the top, and although these are much too heavy and ostentatious for daily wear, they’re ideal for the occasional holiday party. You see? I did learn an important lesson from this after all.

Images via Zara, Vogue.com, Céline, and Pinterest

Undone

021 031 051 061 071 081 091 102 111Perfectly undone details, on a perfect undone babe. It’s nice to see a non-white girl with curvier proportions modelling for a change. After the last Editorial mag shoot I posted, a few readers expressed some consternation at the thinness of the featured model. Although I’m not one to shame any woman for her body, regardless of whether she’s too thin or overweight, it’s always a good thing to look at clothes on a variety of body types. Especially when they fit like they do here ❤

All pieces by Vaquera & Women’s History Museum. Shoes by Céline

Photography by June Canedo
Styling by Tess Herbert
Model: Lee @ Lorde Inc.

Contentment

qL1o7h Sji0mG d6hGnY V82ZBx Abn3VJ bmyLcj qCYtEl 4afjOE sU3XsU HkgVAp ehhlt1 VvLN9Q Jk20sGThere are few bloggers who wear simplicity as perfectly as Maria Van Nguyen. Lucky for us, she also designs clothes. Inspired by some of the best minimalist designers—Jil Sander, Céline, The Row, and Margiela—Maria’s been honing her technical and design skills for the past three years at Parsons and collaborating with talented people like Christina Paik. As one of the first bloggers I followed and one of the few bloggers I still follow to this day, Maria’s growth as an artist and curator has been tremendously inspiring. So obviously I was beyond stoked to check out the lookbook for her thesis collection, Contentment. Much like her personal style, the only colours in Maria’s collection are white, black, and grey. She works with primarily natural fabrics like wool, cotton, and silks. Silhouettes are kept casual and unfussy. I love the soft light saturating every photo, so quintessentially Paik. Even the shoe choices—easy mules and classic pumps—are effortless but carefully thought out. What can I say? I’d wear absolutely everything from this collection and would hang every lookbook shot in my apartment.

Images via Christina PaikMaria Van Nguyen

Céline Pre-Fall 2015

celine celine2 celine3 celine4 celine5 celine6 celine7celine8Few shows get me as excited as Céline, and especially Céline pre-fall. Something about the in-between, retail-friendly season usually spells magic for the Parisian label, and this year was no different. Silhouettes maintained their slouch, and cropped trousers and skirts hung flatteringly with a modest flare. As usual, Phoebe Philo is a master of fabric mixing, layering plush fur under sleek wool, fine silk under buttery leather. I’m not exaggerating when I say I would wear absolutely every single thing in this collection (although I’m not a big fan of the shoes). I was happy to see she was still working with fringe and circular hardware in her buttons and zippers. The ringed zippers, in particular, lend the garments a casual sportiness, although it’s more Aspen skiwear than health goth, which I’m sure most people have gotten sick of by now. Philo’s tastes veered a little more towards the playful and the delicate this season, opting for off-the-shoulder tops and strategically-placed ribbons. The Céline woman might be elegant and sophisticated first and foremost, but that doesn’t mean she doesn’t indulge in girly dress-up from time to time.

 Images via style.com

Lookbook: Markoo SS15

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If I had to name a few of my favourite Toronto labels, Tania Martins and Mona Koochek’s Markoo Studios would definitely be one of them. I first fell for the brand when a colleague tipped me off on their leather-centric AW13 collection, in particular, a black calfskin sweatshirt. Back then I was just starting to grow tired of wearing bright colours, and the collection’s colour palette of black, grey, olive, and oxblood really spoke to me. I loved the classic silhouettes and almost gender-neutral cuts of the clothes, as well as the unexpected detailing on some of the pieces. A dress shirt with a pleated panel. A heather grey sweatshirt with intricate braiding on the sleeves. Leather trousers that fit like jogging pants (before everyone else started doing it). Untitled-4 Untitled-5

Indeed, what made Markoo so memorable to me was the subtlety with which it interpreted trends, and how current the trends were. It’s true. Canucks, for the most part, can be a bit slow when it comes to thinking ahead and dressing for the part. Forget starting trends—Canadians have a hard enough time catching on to what the rest of the world is wearing. For example, sneakers, like the Adidas Stan Smiths and the Nike Free Runs, have been a major trend for a few seasons now. But at Toronto fashion week, I was pretty shocked by how few sneakers and how many platform pumps I saw. Untitled-6 Untitled-7

Of course, there’s nothing wrong with marching to the beat of our own drum (however uncomfortable that march may be). But based on my own fashion proclivities, I’m thankful there are designers in this city who are as inspired by Céline and Margiela and Acne as I am, and who love black, white and denim, mesh detailing, slouchy leather, and dressing like a boy as much as I do. Untitled-8 Untitled-9 Untitled-10

Just last week, Markoo presented its Spring Summer 2015 collection, and I was delighted to receive the accompanying lookbook in my inbox. Much like my first encounter with the brand one year ago, the collection features plenty of neutrals and monochrome, leather and denim, and relaxed sportswear that looks cozy and elegant. I like that the Markoo woman is feminine but very low-key about it. She’s the type of woman to be dressed in a heavy, floor-length denim smock and still be the most alluring woman in the room, thanks to a pair of conveniently placed shoulder cut-outs. This collection is sexy but, much like past seasons, never overtly so. Instead we get whispers and suggestions of it, in the flashes of skin peeking through strips of mesh, and in the glimpses of tanned shoulders made bare by well-cut tanks and off-the-shoulder dresses. It just so happens that I have a “thing” for women’s shoulders. Don’t ask me why, but I think it’s the most beautiful part of a woman’s body. So thanks Tania and Mona for appealing to this no-longer-secret fetish of mine. I’ll start saving my money now so I can cop a few pieces in six months’ time.

Click for the complete lookbook and where to buy after the jump!

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Zara Fall ’14

WOMAN_01_1920 WOMAN_02_1920 WOMAN_03_1920 WOMAN_05_1920 WOMAN_06_1920 WOMAN_07_1920 WOMAN_10_1920 WOMAN_11_1920A fun game I like to play is look at every Zara collection and guess the “originals”. I see flashes of Carven and Gucci’s fall 2014 collections in the leopard looks, Alexander Wang in the sportier ensembles, and Christopher Lemaire and The Row in the grey garments.

As Zara’s influence continues to grow among fashion-savvy women, so too have their discreet copycat skills. What makes them so good at channeling their influences can be boiled down to three things: good styling, adoption of vague ideas rather than exact copies, and a choosiness when deciding just which brands to emulate. Balenciaga, Stella McCartney, Celine are all fair game. Missoni, Jeremy Scott, Versace: probably not. Because my personal style has always leaned towards minimalism, I’m more than happy that those are the brands Zara chooses to flatter with imitation. Zara’s brilliance at interpreting their influences and styling them in a modern way has even made a fan out of Olivier Rousteing, creative director of Balmain, and I have to say I agree.

Images vis Zara.com

The Row: Resort 2015

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We first sang the praises of The Row back in February during the AW 2015 ready-to-wear collections. The designers and former child stars Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen stunned fashion journos and socialites with their cozy and elegant pieces. Not since Raf Simons’ Jil Sander and Phoebe Philo’s Céline has understated refinement been so powerful.

Of course there was a sense from the beginning of the twins’ fashion careers that they were much more than your cookie cutter celebrity designer. Launching The Row in 2006 and the contemporary clothing line Elizabeth and James in 2007, the twins’ success has been driven by Ashley’s business acumen and Mary-Kate’s creativity and eye for modern designs. In 2011 the Olsens also branched out into members-only e-commerce with Stylemint.com. Much like 90s’ mail order book clubs and American Girl doll clubs, subscribers get exclusive dibs on new items monthly at budget friendly prices. In the case of Stylemint, items include T-shirts and other basics, all designed by Mary-Kate and Ashley.

Judging by the sisters’ creative output across all three of their clothing lines, it’s clear that they’re obsessed with elevating the often-forgotten basic. In an industry that has a tendency to favour showstopping maximalism over simplicity, it’s easy to see why perfecting a T-shirt or trousers might seem like a dull and fruitless endeavour. Not so for the Olsens. More than anything, luxury for the Olsens is defined by quality and timelessness, and probably comfort too. This means The Row’s Resort 2015 collection is full of sumptuous fabrics like wool, linen, mohair, and cashmere, cut in easy-to-wear and feminine (but not girly) silhouettes. Waists are cinched to emphasize the female shape, but done so nonchalantly with bathrobe-like sashes as opposed to their uptight cousin, the structured belt. Footwear is kept classic, while the below-the-knee hemline is modest by most women’s standards. More than being timeless, these garments and their hemlines are also ageless, appealing to a broad range of generations. On first look, you probably wouldn’t wear these pieces on your next Tinder mission, but I’m arguing that you should. As covered-up as the ensembles are, there’s no denying how beautiful they make the female body look.