Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Eye'm Tripping

I am now what is known as freshman on vacation... not a frosh. There is an immensely big difference. WOWZA. I'm tripping

In less than a week I'll be heading to this city ...
FOR A MONTH. And all I have to do is walk around and be regaled by stories of Venice's wonderful history and art and architecture and I'm graded on it. Sorry, I'm not bragging I'm just so effing stoked. Expect HUUUGE posts full of pictures (actually, seriously keep your fingers crossed that I can actually upload pics...)

For now while I rest in my extremely quiet dorm without my 2Bers I will serenade your eyes with some Op Art...

So Op Art = Optical Art... savey? It's art that tricks the eye into believing that there is movement in the predominantly black and white images. And the master of this artistic movement is Brit, Bridget Riley.
Arrest 1

Blaze 4


Cataract 3

Ok besides the fact that these works are in my favorite color combo (oh I'm sorry black is a shade haha), they actually do simulate movement. My eyes get sore after a while from staring at them. They remind me of this book my dad used to have in his office. It was an optical illusion book that you held close to your face, stared at a point on the unintelligible picture and as you pulled the picture away from your face this crazy 3D picture popped out. BOO

So, yes she's blabbering on about bs but I have a point.
Told ya (Smug grin). Meet Junya Watanabe whose menswear for women collection featured this strong black/white combo prominently. Blazers, brogues, black, turbans, optical patterns... how could you go wrong.

I definitely saw a correlation between Bridget Riley and some of the Spring '10 looks that came down the runway
Here's another Bridget Riley, probably her most famous, Movement for Squares...
And here are Josh Goot and Temperly London. Goot is channelling this crazy psychedelic black and white-eat-me-alive print and Temperly's model looks like something out of Alice and Wonderland... in a wonderful way.
This is another Goot creation... again using black and white transitioning panels to lend the model this time-warping feel. Very Treky. And on the right we have the lovely minimalism of Tommy Hilfiger with a simple bandeau that looks like an extreme close up of something Bridget Riley does.
This time Goot (left again) is playing with color and multiple patterns... spots, lines eat your heart out. Donatella plays with black, white and sheer in her Versace creation that she said has Alice in Wonderland vibes. I can see it.
And finally our last runway pair = Veronique Leroy and Givenchy with two equally awesome pairs of leggings/pants. Givenchy is just crazy. Slap those on with a leather jacket, sky high Louboutins, a pair of neon Ray Bans and even the toughest bikers will shy away.

I've been waiting to do this post for so long because I own something that is worthy of comparison... I think.
I bought these Topshop leggings years ago and used them this year as a Halloween costume (I was a mime tee hee). I wore 'em a couple times back home in the UK but I think Canadians would send me to the Penitentiary here in Kingston ha. But I feel as though you could make a pair of these by wrapping your legs in this B Riley piece. Pretty similar eh?


My wonderful friend Syl took these pictures for me and I owe her everything because this dress is hers too. But keeping in the optical art tradition she let me borrow it... American Apparel is life seriously
See more stripes and black and white. And bodycon is very in.

Anywhoooo, 'tis late and I have to finish packing *tear. Life is good. I'm feeling really sentimental right about now.

Listening to: Duffy - 'Mercy ft. the Game Remix'
Observations: Please not one more fire alarm for old times sake
Craving: Company

Monday, April 19, 2010

It starts with cutting out snowflakes

Sup! Archaeology exam tomorrow... no biggie right?
Moving on to today's agenda.
Yeeeeesss, it's a piece of paper. And why is it so important...
* Snip snip snip *
Voila.... a snowflake. I am just so talented. As kids we're taught to cut away and create these masterpieces. Fold, fold, cut, cut. Easy as pie.

So I'm rambling on about snowflakes and cutting out stuff because Cut Outs are the name of the game today. Looking through my shiny new inventory of Spring '10 designer's collections I found alot of cool shapes that had been cut out from the fabric and a trend appeared.

LBD no more, its LBSD - Little black slashed dresses. From top left Cushnie et Ochs, Julien MacDonald, Versus and Temperly London...

Ms. Coco Chanel pioneered it, Hepburn nailed it and now we've in the '10s have gobbled it up. Make sure the hems are short, there's alot of skin bared because the slashes are in... for today
Snip snipety snip snip away. I told you. Lots of skin and legs bared. Both Phi and Unique balance cuts of their leggings with oversized jackets and lots of black black black black black black...
The opposite to black on our color spectrum... blinding beautiful white. (Lots of white this spring, but more on that later). Cynthia Rowley and Maz Azria both embrace unintentional looking snipets that aren't anything over the top but are still cool... like the color they're in.
Back to black. YAY. Ok, while Jil Sander's dress on the left is more of a close knit on a thin mesh and less cut out it's kinda cuttey outey. On the right Threeasfour (one of my new faves) does a similar sheer dress. Wonderful. They also do these sick black leggings with these wickedly-strange shaped mesh inserts that rock my world.
Jean Paul Gaultier did a military, denim grunge - I donno if I can call it grunge but that's the only word that that comes to mind. Anyhoooo it's a body suit, it's fresh, its cool (I'd be cold wearing it right now... poor circulation sucks). And then there's Chado Ralph Rucci who doesn't do 'Cut Outs' but this wonderful labyrinth shaped, spiral something. The design reminded me of the cover of a Kate Mosse book, ironically, called Labyrinth that I read when I was 10 or so. Blazer's are my weakness. I'd sell my soul for this... maybe I'll do a post about things I'd sell my soul for... watch this space.
Little baby cuts. Slice, snip, chop, trim do whatever. Herve Leger = ***** as always and so does Pringle of Scotland who showed in London instead of Milan this year. Welcome home! Tiny nicks are sweet.
And... Romantic cuts. Frida Giannini opened her spectacular Spring '10 Gucci show with a white dress that reminded myself of a snowflake but in the summer. I think JLo busted (no pun intended) this one out recently. Then Fashion Fringe showed this salmon/pale pink/rose creation that reminds me of a confection of pink construction paper. Purdy.

BUT... the masters of Spring '10 Cut Outs is without a doubt in my top 10 of most breathtaking shows ever (aka that I've documented/come across so far). Again watch this space.

Viktor and Rolf absolutely slay me with their unbelievable collection of tulle and voluminous skirts. Seriously, hands down.... GENIUS
They took chain saws to the tulle.... seriously. It's unreal. InStyle did a small piece on how to make one of these dresses. I need to dig that article out pronto.
I honestly don't have words to describe it, but HOLEY (haha) ****. Fan-freaking-tastic

So, not bad eh? Lots of pictures and alittle less text. Cut Outs bring out the best in me. It's funny, I just looked over at the Entourage episode I want to watch next and it's called 'First Cut is the Deepest'. Haha.

Cuts away!

Listening to: The Prodigy - 'Invader's Must Die'
Observations: Quiet hour in rez sucks
Craving: The next 10 days to rush by so I can go home to see my fam jam who just got back from Ethiopia and have 1200 pictures for me!!!

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Geometry was my favorite topic in math

I'm baaaaaaack.
Sorry for the two week delay in posting anything hip and new. Firstly classes finished on the 9th, so there was a grace period for celebration, and then I was at 'home' for the past week with my four additional 'siblings' doing nothing, really. When chilling with my four brothers-who-aren't-related-but-they're-so-close-they're-siblings there is usually alot of play fighting, hockey watching, burping and eating junk food... what a life. But seriously.
So. Much. Testosterone.

Firstly I want to brag about my designer exploits over the past fortnight which have fueled my non-posting-ness.
I wandered over to (my go-to site) and decided that I wanted my own 'Designer Directory' for each season, but abridged. So, in my insanity I dove into the 300+ designer list for Spring '10 and went through every single photograph of every single collection and took pictures of the collections and outfits that fit my design aesthetic or had interesting shapes, colors and textures.

Wow... yeah I know. Two weeks later I'm 196 designers down with easily over 500 pictures. Secondly as a result of my time away I've made a list of topics that I want to tackle, so no need to worry about a lack of things to discuss.

Today has been a long rambling post and I only want to point out the beautiful Middle Eastern geometry in two of the looks from Kenzo's Spring '10 collection.
There's a definite geometric vibe from these two flowing numbers that are probably my favorite two looks. Very neutral colors colors help balance the very active design and pattern.
Islamic art is often 'restricted' to symmetrical, geometric mosaics because of the Qu'ran's ruling that making images of God is prohibited as nothing can ever resemble Him. Therefore most art is 'abstract' in nature

And there are no loud colors, all are neutral and don't rely on color to communicate beauty. The shapes and reflective patterns are calming and intricate; the more complex the design, the more admiration it inspires.

That's all folks. Tomorrow = less text & more PICTURES

Listening to: Don Cherry's comments on the Pittsburgh - Ottawa game
Observations: Ottawa's defeat... Ohhh Caaaaaaanada
Craving: More of the green curry I just ate and a trip to the gym

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Couture can do

Day of days: Introduction to Art History is over! Nooooo wayyy
Crazy stuff eh? I'm sad. The slide test was ehhh, mehh, blahh (Enter any kind of nondescript noise HERE). It was ok I guess. Modern art and I have a love hate relationship. On to fa fa fa fa fashion

Haute Couture refers to 'high dressmaking' or 'high sewing' and is the practice of creating special custom clothing for a high end clientele. While fashion is art, I interpret Couture asthe avant-garde of the art world. I want to take Couture creations and put them in museum exhibits because they challenge beauty and are just so breathtaking... It is a way for designers to channel their most difficult ideas into cloth and fabric and no be restricted by the ready-to-wear standards.

I found some of my favorite Spring 2010 Couture looks have roots in popular culture and art. Take a gander...

Alexis Mabille
While not a regular couture shower Mabille executes a neat new visual experience. These couture looks split the wearer right down the middle, from top to toe and are a perfect example of color blocking. The rich tailoring is evident in the neatly cinched suit jacket and streamlined pants and the dress is a wonderful A line shape.
I'm not going to lie, my immediate response to these looks was that it reminded me of 'Two Face' from the Batman franchise... Think I'm wrong?
Top to toe people... and Tommy Lee nails this.

Mabille also credits the Cubist movement as inspiration and funnily enough this Picasso painting (Demoiselles d'Avignon, 1907, Cubism) was on my slide test today...
Armani Privé

Ok, so it's pretty obvious that Armani was taking inspiration from the moon. Giorgio... please dress me. A palette of very light pastels and the staple black and white mixed with several shimmering shades of grey make this collection a breath of the freshest air.
Moony examples... (from top left) Curvilinear ruffles, crescent shaped bag, the same curved shoe and a crescent clasp on a jacket

This collection reminded me of another image from my slide list... Gustav Klimt's The Kiss (1907 -8, Symbolism). There is something light and feathery about this painting that I associate with feelings of the moon and romanticism and dreams. Yes, it's a different color palette, but the lustrous fabric reminds me of Giorgio's shimmering pant suits.

Givenchy and Valentino

Ok boys and girls... if you haven't seen Avatar yet, well don't worry it's even permeated the fashion world in the form of Givenchy's fantastical blue and green patterned suits and in Valentino's blue shoulders and colored eye makeup. Seems as though Pandora is on everyone's mind.

When I saw the blue pantsuit above I was immediately reminded of James Cameron's film and the tribal body paint.

At Valentino the blue shoulders were a big shout out to the epic film. The colorful dusting of the eyes also helps and looking at the gown on the top right I am reminded of startling plant life that seems slightly extra terrestrial.
A look at the Avatar characters (Go see it! It's a stunning visual)

-Life is good

Listening to: Florence and the Machine - 'My boy builds coffins' (It's fantastic!)
Observations: Last week of classes
Craving: Chocolate

Monday, April 5, 2010

Thanks Paul Klee, I totally agree - 'Color has taken possession of me'

I am a self professed 'magpie for color'... slightly poetic, but completely true. I've been looking at paintings and pieces of art all day, in preparation for my art history slide test tomorrow (wish me luck!) and so I decided a reprieve was in order. Its pretty obvious what my post is about... It's one of my favorite things in the world and these artists all felt it's effects:
Paul Klee said 'I know that it has hold of me forever... Color and I are one' -Untitled
Kandinsky said 'Color directly influences the soul' - Sketch for Composition VII

And Claude Monet said 'Color is my day-long obsession, joy and torment' - Haystacks

Photos are from
The recent revival in my color cravings have been satisfied by designer duo Basso and Brooke and their Spring/Summer 2010 Collection.This Brazilian and British pair reign supreme in the world of digital prints. (my go to runway Bible) has called them the 'Pixar of of clothes' - which could be taken in two ways: 1) they do to digital prints what Pixar does to animation (fantasmagoricalness) or 2) their prints evoke a Pixar-esque feeling because of their colors, patterns and textures.
The dress on the right reminds me of 'Finding Nemo' and a coral reef with tropical fish. Their color palette is highly vibrant and saturated with almost every color possible

They also prove that they can tackle less opulent colors and that they can deal with black. The image on the left shows their embrace of one of Spring's big trends: underwear as outer wear.

I think that this is what Joseph's technicolored dream coat would have looked like.
Runway photos from
Ok, so maybe I'm crazy, but I wore a crazy neon, splatter print dress to my 12th grade Prom and looking back it reminds me of this Basso and Brooke creation...
Color: half check. One shoulder: check. Crazy: check. Pretty close I think....
In 9th grade we had a project of some sort and I wanted to be rebellious (my teacher and I had different views on everything really) so I did what can only be described as finger painting for teens, but I do think of Basso and Brooke now when I see it.
Anyway... back to studying
- Life is good
Listening to: Kim Carnes - "Bette Davis Eyes'
Observations: SUN!
Craving: Studying to be over? Yes yes