When I first laid eyes on the "Teddy Boy meets Punk" cutout boot on the Balenciaga S'11 runway, it was love/lust/obsession at first sight. I was determined to have a pair - and perhaps if the Fashion Gods were playing nice, they'd see fit to conjur me up some in not-blue. And see fit they did! Bank Fashion recently sent me a really cute version of cut-out booties in black (very me) by Bronx.
So what to wear them with?
Poking around the site and marveling at their excellent prices - which would allow you shop and have enough left over to be able to afford to step out & show off your new look - here's a fun home-girl look I came up with. It features all merch from Bank, right down to the cool laser-cut top, stylish ear-cuff and cherry-red satchel.
Along with rich, famous & fabulous, Nicklas Bendtner can now add designer to his resume. While footballing for Arsenal is the official day job, when he's off the clock, he dabbles in making cool jewels for fashionistos. "It has always been my dream to create a jewellery collection for men," explains the handsome Dane about his stingray, silver and black-diamond pieces. "And it must - of course - be jewellery that does not look like anything else on the market."
The "Classic" collection of rings and bracelets are available in seasonal hues and are striking enough to wear out, but sufficiently sturdy to play sports in. The "Wildlife" collection (my fave), also contains necklaces and includes:
- an eagle, considered a ruler of the sky which symbolizes courage and perspective;
- a bear (power & strength);
- a cobra (craftiness & mystery);
- a whale - above (it rests in itself);
- & a lion (being a born leader).
"The jewelry has edge and attitude," continues Bendtner. "It is exclusive and unique." And is cool enough for ladies who like to borrow from the boys. "To my surprise, lots of women have shown a huge interest in our Collections." Enough so that he designed special pieces just for his feminine fans.
NOBLE by Bendtner is available in Denmark and internationally in Pacific Palisades, California.
- Lesley Scott
[Note: This was written in collaboration with NOBLE by Bendtner. The words are mine.]
You could blame it on Isaac Asimov. His mother probably does. After dad gave him the author's Robot and Foundation series at age twelve, the following year Dominic Elvin proceeded to deconstruct a stereo-cassette player, turning it into a robot. To the dismay of mom.
However, she's no doubt proud these days at the LED-festooned cool cybernetic couture, jewelry and installations her son has created for British Airways, Absolut Vodka, Robot Wars, High Life & premiere party for Terminator 3 - as well as countless music videos and performance art shows. Inspired by the world of frontier sciences, Elvin takes apart old hardware from PCs, appliances, industrial machinery and other discarded electronics and reconfigures them into sculptures for the future. His vision of which is inspired by how people react to the changes happening around us. Going forward, Elvin plans to work more with sound and sensors in his sculptures, making them more interactive and alive.
Elvin accepts commissions & will make pieces (like the one at right) to order on Cyberdog.com.
The Futurenetics tribe is so interesting in the way they take lo-fi (discarded electronics) and turn it into the cybernetic body-couture. For me, I find it makes "The Future" seem less daunting and a whole lot more fashion-friendly.
The End Times have been grandly predicted hundreds of times in the past, beginning - on record, at least - with the ancient Romans of 634BC who feared the end was nigh when Rome turned 120. Sextus Julius Africanus revised his Doomsday date to the year 800, while in 1186, John of Toledo confirmed that the planetary alignment was primed for our destruction in 1186. Martin Luther placed his bets on "no later than 1600 and Cotton Mather was forced to revise his prediction of 1697 to 1716 when the former failed to materialize. Harriet Livermore (1847), Seventh Day Adventist Margaret Rowen (1925), astrologer Jeane Dixon (1962), Pat Robertson (2007) and fundamentalist Mormon Warren Jeffs (2012) have all been famously wrong. Going forward, Dixon decided to have another crack at it and gives us until 2020, while Sir Isaac Newton's read of the Bible places the date in 2060.
Suffice it to say, Armageddon Prediction is probably not the most rewarding of career choices.
The fact that these various (false) prophets of doom & gloom accurately hone in on people's fears and yet are so consistently W-R-O-N-G makes it unsurprising to me that the Apocalytic fashion tribe - which is prepping for the Apocalypse, but with an eye on style - has two distinct flavors. The first is the most obvious: the very head-to-toe tough leather, Mad Max-channeling fashion badass which takes the predictions (somewhat) seriously. They rock Matrix-style kung-fu leather made for badassery - meaning that when you wear it, you can actually engage in activities like moving, eating & breathing.
The second group, while concerned about the looming threat of total annihilation, is also of the mind that all the predictions have turned out to be bunk. So while the predictions worry them...a bit...they only take them half seriously. And the other half? It's out partying like there's no tomorrow since there probably won't be one. Any blow-out party worth its festive salt requires one hell of a getup. Besides, the monied classes have a long history of dressing up and pretending the good times will never end...right up until the end.
That's why I'm not surprised to see the party-mad Apocalytics attempting to follow in the fashionista-extraordinaire footsteps of Effie Trinket (The Hunger Games) and dressing in a kind of hyper-whimsical way that reminds me of those awesome 80s glam Hair Bands. Just like the 80s hair dudes, Apocalytical tresses are ever higher (and closer to god) while their shared love of makeup would make a clown convention look demure. There is similarly much wearing of leopard by both groups, the silhouettes are sexy and body-con (but not in any way particularly pragmatic) and while the accessories reference "tough", the context makes them silly - fingerless leather driving gloves, anyone?
This *thumb your nose at the forces that be* sartorial vibe is strong in the upcoming "Capital Couture" collection by movie costumer Trish Summerville - cue the laser-cut leathers, over-the-top evening finery and streamlined silhouette, all conveniently timed to drop on Net-a-Porter along with the November release of her work in The Hunger Games: Catching Fire. “This is also brilliant fashion in its own right," adds Holli Rogers, the Fashion Director of Net-a-Porter, "and we’re delighted to provide our customers with the chance to purchase limited-edition pieces designed by one of the most original costume designers in the industry today.”
"At some point in the not-too-distant future, biotechnology is going to give the designers the biggest set of complex new materials and tools they have ever had the opportunity to work with," observes Amy Congdon, a graduate from Central Saint Martins with an MA in Textile Futures who is now pursuing a PhD at Textile Futures Research Centre; the Centre is part of the University Of The Arts London (UAL), a community of practice-based, design-led researchers all tackling the same issue: how can materials and textiles enable a more sustainable future? Congdon's "Biological Atelier" project explored some of the implications of new materials that are "living" and how areas like tissue-engineering will impact textile skills such as embroidery.
In a world where materials and fabrics are not longer manufactured but grown, will we...
...manipulate our bodies to grow jewelry for the season?
...forgo cosmetic surgery in favor of tissue that is engineered and designed to be disposable?
...embellish the temporary graft-tissue with gemstones?
...drape ourselves in cross-species fur and adorn ourselves with ethically-grown ivory?
As the role of the fashion and accessories designer change, blurring with that of artist with craftsman with scientist, what will fashion look like in the biotechnological future of, say, 2080?
These images are from Congdon's "Bio Nouveau" collection for Fall/Winter 2082, an era when couture pieces are tissue-engineered until the next fad or trend emerges, at which time they are disposed of.
The Futurenetics fashion tribe seeks to temper the cutting edge of high-tech with some good ole-fashioned, low tech humanity. Using fashion as a vehicle to explore how research will impact our daily lives does a great service to the rest of us by helping to make it more understandable and therefore less frightening. And pretty fabulous, judging by Amy Congdon's capsule collection.
Here's the PODCAST I recorded about this FUTURENETICS fashion collection for 2082:
It's of the tiny, bony apparatus in the inner ear, the cochlea, which has three arching & semicircular canals to control our balance and a seashell-like part for hearing. The really cool thing about this anatomically-correct and actual-size piece is that it's 3D printed - in either sterling silver or gold-plated stainless steel.
Camo is certainly a fun print to play with and while it's easy to incorporate into your off-duty wardrobe, it's also totally doable for work. Especially if you pair it with classic, preppy pieces, lending them some spice; they, in turn, as a neutral backdrop against which to show off the camo pattern. This cashmere-blend camo scarf by Christopher Kane and PS11 satchel by Proenza Schouler
look great worn together without being too matchy-matchy and would stand out well against a classic camelhair coat.
GET THE LOOK:overcoat - Joseph; blouse - Vanessa Bruno; reversed-denim trousers - See by Chloe; pumps - Gianvito Rossi; earrings - Artisan Sterling; glasses frames - Illesteva - all Net-a-Porter
- Lesley Scott
[Note: These are affiliate links but I only link to stuff I love and wouldn't hestitate to buy myself.]
This Drop of Tear ring (available at Boticca) is made entirely by hand with oxidized sterling silver and a 9mm zircon by Turkish designer Selda Okutan. It obviously makes a striking statement as is, but for the bold bride, it would certainly be an eyecatching engagement ring.
- Lesley Scott
[Note: This is an affiliate link, but I only link to stuff I like and wouldn't hesitate to buy & wear myself.]
The white tux blazer of course looks great with a matching trouser or even with skinny black-leather leggings for a more rocker-chick edge. But white & black also look chic with pastels like sugary, cotton-candy pink. Especially a swishy wide-legged wool trouser for an interesting twist. Simply carry through the pastel feel in the bag & makeup and have fun with either a two-tone brogue or, as I've styled it here, with a graphic pointy pump.
GET THE LOOK: tux blazer - Roberto Cavalli; tee - Gucci; trouser - Simone Rocha; pumps - Rene Caovilla; necklace - Roberto Cavalli; clutch - Miu Miu; glasses - Illesteva; nail polish - butter London - all Net-a-Porter.com
Slogan sweatshirts & oversize sweaters are without question comfy, but they can easily run the risk of looking sloppy unless you put some thought into styling your look. With a top this oversize, balance the outfit by going extremely skinny on the bottom + slip on some towering heels for some extra balancing height. (Any excuse, right?) Blues are fun to play with and can look unexpectedly fresh when you take cobalt & put it with aqua as I did here. Dyed snakeskins also tend to have interesting combos of blues & grays, which is why this pair works so well with this outfit.
GET THE LOOK: intarsia-knit top - Kenzo; skinnies - Levi's; patchwork coat - Anna Sui; python pumps - Christian Louboutin; bag- 3.1 Phillip Lim; earrings - Kimberly McDonald - all Net-a-Porter.com
This Stella McCartney plaid sweater is kinda kooky, kinda nerdy, kinda not, kinda...hard to categorize. Which can mean kinda hard to pull off in a way that says "I'm stylish" rather than "I raided grandpa's closet & not in an ironic way." I think the best way to solve such sartorial challenges is to (1) focus first on proportions; and (2) stick to colors that are tone-on-tone, with some that pop. So, the first: proportion. The sweater, all grandpa qualities aside, is oversize and boxy, so whatever you pair it with on the bottom half needs to provide balance below - here the pants are cropped and the shorter length helps bring harmony to the volume of the top half. Colorwise, I carried through the blues and whites of the sweater into the pant and also played up the blue hue with a nipped-waist denim blazzer. And few colors look as awesome paired with a pastel blue as a bright & throbbing red. Any excuse for stepping out in red footwear & accessories is fine by me. The reds in the boot & bag are slightly different; just for a bit of variation & visual interest, but not so much as to make people wonder if you're perhaps color blind. Blinded, though, they will be by your style savvy.
GET THE LOOK: denim blazer - DSQUARED2; pant - Stella McCartney; scarf - Destin; sunglasses - Miu Miu; boots - Saint Laurent; bag - Valentino Garavani