Fashion Week might be swirling around Europe currently, but we at Closet Couture are currently concerned with what to wear now. I especially love fall weather and the sweaters and jackets that come out of closets everywhere.
Street Style is a big theme with publishers everywhere – and why not? It is always so interesting to see how individuals consider and put together their outfits. Strong personalities come out, points of view are not watered down with group thought… the result? Some are great, some are a bit much, and others are fun. But in the day to day of how to look great in your life, not all of them are helpful. I have picked through some of my favorites for personal inspiration from the most excellent blog of New York Magazine, The Cut (Thank you, the source for all the below photos). Opinions, of course, are mine. See the entire slideshow of The Cut’s 50 best street style outfits from Paris here.
Which outfit is your favorite?
Indefatigable designer Kelly Wearstler presented her latest collection in New York the other day. I took a spin around and loved the riot of at her Resort 2013 presentation. Some of the looks I would love to have my best friend wear out with me – they are perfect for her skin tone and whippet thin figure. The pieces I gravitated to were the tops and jackets, which I see as the mainstays in the modern woman’s wardrobe. Ms. Wearstler is pretty darn cool, if I do say so myself. When I lived in Los Angeles, her sensibility was bubbling up through hotel design and she was starting to hit the big time as a major Hollywood decorator / designers. Her use of color, pattern and texture are as unique as a thumbprint. Now I think of her first as a fashion designer, second as an interiors guru. Can you feel it?
By Caroline Melly
Open now through mid-August, Schiaparelli and Prada: Impossible Conversations, at The Costume Institute at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, is a gorgeous exhibit that compares and contrast the work of two renowned female designers, Miuccia Prada and Elsa Schiaparelli. Coming from similar old Italian families, Schiaparelli and Prada are designers who each showed early signs of thinking out of the box and their careers have flourished in separate generations, nearly half a century apart.
Over the course of fashion history, style, values, and the status of women has changed hugely, from the confining bones of a corset in the 1800s to the acceptance of trousers for women. (We can all thank Nan Kempner for a push forward on this – she was at a New York restaurant wearing trousers for a dinner, and the manager told her she was not allowed in as a result. This great lady just took them off and wore her shirt as a dress!) Schiaparelli and Prada’s work emphasizes on feminizing the female figure, as well as empowering the mind and body through their designs.
In the early 1930s (the days of café society) Schiaparelli designed for a woman who needed to look her best primarily seated in a social setting. There was no demand to focus on the lower half of the body, for it was often hidden under the dining table. As a result, Schiaparelli designed jackets that are beautifully embroidered with stunning detailed. Prada, a powerful and passionate woman, focuses often on skirts, featuring modern, feminine design through the striking detail on each of her skirts.
My favorite room of the exhibit was the feature “Neck Up/ Knees Down”, the accessory display part of “Waist Up/ Waist Down”. Schiaparelli’s elaborate hats as well as Prada’s beautifully crafted and designed shoes were displayed next to each other. I instantly envisioned myself on rainy day on the streets of Manhattan in Schiaparelli’s geometric clear cape, or an upscale vintage car show where I will slip on Prada’s light blue T-Bird inspired wedged shoe. The repeated focus on one part of the body by each designer clearly illustrated the intellectual connection between the two designers.
The Schiaparelli and Prada: Impossible Conversations exhibit gives light to the notion that in the fashion world the past is often represented by the present. The Costume Institute Gala celebrating the exhibit was held three days prior to the opening of the show. Chaired by Anna Wintour and interestingly, Jeff Bezos of Amazon (they are trying to break into the higher end fashion market), it was a night filled with A-list celebrities and fashion icons. English actress Carey Mulligan arrived wearing a futuristic, custom-made, Prada dress. Constructed out of silver and gold fish scales, this statement halter dress was Prada at her best: witty, ingenious and beautiful. (Look closely at Anna’s dress – that is a lobster wrapping itself around her – hilarious and fabulous!)
With all of the visual awesomeness that is on Pinterest, we have set up a Closet Couture Pinterest account and filled boards with some of our favorite looks you all have created. One feature unique to Closet Couture is our watermark on the pinned items – you may have noticed it on the home page looks as well. We want other Pinterest users to be able to identify sources of images accurately, as well as showcase where your other looks live. Take a look and see what you think here!
Norma Kamali is a designer I like for her originality and optimism. Though I am not quite brave enough to wear her designs yet (I need fewer curves pretty much everywhere…), her punk English countryside feel with the houndstooth and furs are a delight to see on others. Here are my top picks from her show this week: (And tell me which ones you would wear!)
Marchesa is a line that exudes glamour and romance, and this season exceeded expectations. I am not sure when I will have an opportunity to wear one of these frothy and divine creations (I do wish I could live at Downton Abbey, minus the war and plagues and plumbing….)
But in the meantime, here are my favorites from their show. You will see a theme here, as I have included a photo of me on my wedding day in 2005 at the bottom of the post. Clearly, I love an avian reference.
Marchesa seems straight out of Woody Allen’s Midnight in Paris… Have you seen it? If not, do, for the costumes and period elements alone. Divine.
I was hoping to be able to write Cute things for Spring, but we are no where near it, despite record high temps across the country. But this email from Tom’s publicist made me happy, so that will do for now.
Tom’s Shoes, started by the stylish Blake Mycoskie (pictured above) has an admirable, and effective, program to help impoverished children in developing countries and here at home in the US. For each pair of shoes purchased, one pair is donated to a child in need.
If you remember freshmen biology, there was a lecture at some point about all the nasty diseases one can pick up when walking barefoot in areas with challenging sanitation or indigineous parasites. By wearing shoes, children have a much higher chance of being healthy and growing up strong.
To date, over 1,000,000 pairs of shoes have been given away through Tom’s One for One program.
I was so excited to hear that they are branching out from their first style, based on the Argintinean alpargata shoe, to include the ever handy and cute ballet flat.
New spring styles are pictured here, and best of all, they are still part of the One For One program. Pretty great, right? All styles available at Toms.com. Prices range from $74-$78. Available starting tomorrow.
Which one(s) strike your fancy? I am getting the beige with the black cap toe to start.
Holidays mean festive dress, parties with friends and family, being thankful, and, of course, mandatory office Secret Santa weeks. I always hope that the cool girl with interesting taste picks my name and yet so far that has not happened. I have received, however, numerous generic gifts including gift cards to stores I don’t frequent and other miscellany that I don’t end up using.
Because it can be tough to shop for people you know through work alone, or less well, here is a gift guide for items that are versatile, stylish, and under $25 per item. Enjoy…. And don’t forget to wrap your present!!
From top down:
DL Co Mini Apple Candle, $25. Available here.
Alessi Dozi Magnetic Paperclip Holder, $25. Available here. (Paperclips are the quills on it’s back! Cuteness!)
Anthropologie Rococo Bell Candle, $20. Available here.
Roost Horn Pencil Cup, $18. Available here.
West Elm Papier Mache Antlers, $19. Available here.