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  • Gaby Aghion’s Chloé Girl

    Posted by Reem Permalink

    Gaby Aghion.

    The fashion world owes a great deal to Gaby Aghion, the co-founder of French fashion house Chloé, who passed away Saturday at the age of 93. Aghion is said to have coined the term “pret-a-porter,” a pioneer of youthful fashion with the luxury bohemian vibe that is so coveted among fashion lovers and designers alike, Aghion burst on to the fashion scene full of ideas that would not only revamp French fashion but facilitate burgeoning design talent for decades.

    When Aghion created her first collection Paris, 1952, she was mindful of branding. While all the other French designers dealt exclusively in haute couture, she would design ready-to-wear luxury, body hugging, feminine, and youthful. It has been documented that Aghion ran in bohemian circles in Paris, counting the likes of Pablo Picasso among her friends. Aghion wished to dress her friends over the stuffy Paris elite of her day, a philosophy that has been touted by many up-and-coming modern designers who would rather dress the girl about town than the upper echelon. An intangible cool, sexy vibe was synonymous with the Chloé name from the very beginning, due in large part to Aghion’s pioneering spirit, artistic roots and chic, easy elegance. Aghion named the brand after her friend, Chloé Huymans, a fitting story behind the label that would encapsulate Parisian feminine dressing like an in-the-know friend to the young in spirit and the stylish. Aghion was born in Egypt in 1921 and was quoted to say, “In Egypt, the sand is like silk. It is fluid, it moves,” explaining her choices of soft fabrics and the signature nude tones, ever-present within the Chloé aesthetic.

    In 1959, Aghion would bring Gerard Pipart on board to design, Karl Lagerfeld would make a name for himself at the house when he joined in 1964. More recently, design talent like Stella McCartney, and Phoebe Philo carried on the legacy of the historic French label.

    In their remembrance of Aghion, WWD, reports the French designer told the publication in 2012, “A lot of things did not exist in France. Everything was yet to be invented, and this thrilled me,” said Aghion, “I was carried away: It was like a tornado. I designed a small collection and decided to present it myself. I went to source the buttons, the fabrics. I was sticking my neck out.” Still close to her design roots over 60 years later, Aghion recalls the excitement, the risk, and the triumph of her design venture. With the passing of such a great pioneer of women’s wear, one must wonder if the world will ever see such discovery through women’s fashion again.

    Chloé creative director, Clare Waight Keller paid homage to Aghion at the Sunday S/S ’15 show at Paris Fashion Week. Keller’s collection was all about the free spirit, embracing a very different decade from the 1950s, the designer was inspired by the 1973 Film The Wicker Man and Woodstock. Demonstrating that even when every fashion frontier has been done and done again, the Chloe girl will sashay through the uninspired, and the inorganic drawing from cool girls of the past to further inform stylish women of the present.

    Chloé show at Brasserie Lipp, 1960.

     

    (L) Chloé, 1960. (R) Clou dress, A/W 1959 by Gérard Pipar for Chloé.

     

  • Statement Shoes

    Posted by Reem Permalink

    Marni, S/S 2015.

    Outside of Kendall Jenner, one of the most buzzed about appearances during Milan Fashion Week were Marni’s roller wedges for S/S ’15. The collection featured Japanese inspired minimalist pieces and transitioned into splashy floral prints, some tailoring, many oversize pieces and asymmetrical cuts. Vogue referred to Marni’s S/S ’15 shoes as “ugly pretty,” with the standout of the affair being the roller heels. While Milan Fashion Week is a typically sexy showing, there is nothing very sexy about the Birkenstock-like sandals Consuelo Castiglioni sent down the runway. Yet the whimsical, unconventional appeal of the roller heels are impactful in their brazenness, their impracticality but ultimately the allure of an impossible shoe that makes one wonder what if? For decades women have opted for fashion over functionality when it comes to shoes. Footwear is typically what makes or breaks an outfit so of course they are just as influential on the runways.

    Outlandish runway heels have contributed to some of fashion’s most iconic moments and pairings. There were the Vivienne Westwood Ghillie Heels that caused Naomi Campbell to take a tumble on the runway in 1993, Alexander Mcqueen’s 2010 Armadillo Shoes, one of his final collections. Iconic shoes don’t always shock; sometimes they appear on the scene and completely revamp the way women approach dressing. In 1971 Ossie Clark commissioned up-and-coming Manolo Blahnik to design shoes for his runway collection, the pairing helped launch Blahnik’s career and in turn the Spanish designer would steer women’s fashion away from platforms and towards the sexy stilettos through which Blahnik has made his name. Roger Vivier created iconic footwear while at Dior but one of his greatest contributions to the fashion landscape were his Pilgrim Pumps, as simple and understated as the name would suggest, their pairing with Yves Saint Laurent’s 1965 Mondrian Collection, and appearance on Catherine Deneuve in the 1967 film Belle de Jour made them a symbol of 1960s Parisian style.

    Footwear has an architectural quality that is not as easily translated in clothing. Texture, height and volume on shoes are the purest runway statement. Below are just a few snaps and moments in time when shoes transformed the runway, cemented a brilliant pairing or changed the direction of women’s fashion.

    Salvatore Ferragamo is credited with innovating the platform, 1938. (Photo courtesy the MET)

     

    (L) Model changes shoes backstage at Pierre Balmains show, 1951. Photo by Nina Leen. (R) Roger Vivier for Dior, 1959.

     

    Roger Vivier for Dior, 1961. (R: Photo by Paul Schulzer)

     

    (L) Courrèges, Space Age Collection, 1964. (R) Courrèges, Harper’s Bazaar, 1965. Photo by Melvin Sokolsky.

     

    (L) Pilgrim Pumps by Roger Vivier, designed for YSL's A/W 1965 collection and seen on Catherine Deneuve in Belle de Jour. (R) David Bailey captures the Roger Vivier Pilgrim show paired with the YSL Mondrian dress, Vogue Paris, 1965.

     

    (L) 8 inch platforms, 1970s. (R) ZOMP Platform shoes, 1973.

     

    Ivy Shoe by Manolo Blahnik for Ossie Clark, 1971.

     

    (L) Vivienne Westwood, Buffalo Girls boots, A/W 1983. (R) Vivienne Westwood Rocking Horse shoes, 1987.

     

    (L) Chanel glass slippers, 1991. (R) Naomi Campbell in Vivienne Westood Ghilley platforms, 1993.

     

    (L) Givenchy, 1990s. (R-top) Maison Martin Margiela, 1998. (R-bottom) Christian Louboutin's Ballerina Ultima is Louboutin's highest heeled shoe standing at 8-inches.

     

    (L) Christian Dior's Goddess Shoes, 2009. (R) Alexander Mcqueen Armadillo shoe, S/S 2010.

  • Audrey Hepburn 'How to Steal a Million' Makeup

    Posted by Reem Permalink

    Audrey Hepburn is known for a classic, elegant aesthetic, which is why this photo shot by Douglas Kirkland in 1965, for the 1966 film How to Steal a Million, has always had a special place in my heart. I love the dramatic sparkly eye, boldly defined cut crease and mod pink lip on Hepburn. In this video I show a modern, scaled down take on the look. Another great evening makeup alternative that is one part mod, one part modern and two parts bombshell.

  • Avedon for Jun Rope

    Posted by Reem Permalink

    It would seem Richard Avedon mastered the art of the viral video long before its invention. In the 1970s, Avedon directed and acted in a series of fun, conceptual fashion ads for Japanese clothing label Jun Rope. Some of these commercials included Anjelica Huston, Jean Shrimpton, and the absolute best – a behind the scenes dramatization with Lauren Hutton shot in 1973. The ads were imaginative and far ahead of their time. The commercials range from bizarre to glamorous, fairytale-like and all genius. Watch the videos to enjoy the visual decadence and supermodel overload of the Avedon directed clips to infuse a little ‘70s glam in to your day.

     

     

  • Five decades, six looks, one eyeliner pen

    Posted by Reem Permalink

    Eyeliner is often the cornerstone to a vintage beauty look. With all the hype surrounding the Benefit They’re Real! Push-up Liner, I decided to test out the gel liner pen. Setting out to get 6 liner looks from 5 different decades, I put their patented “Acuflex” tip to work. The liner has received mixed reviews, but I found the product to be beginner friendly and Benefit’s claims to be accurate. Check out the video and see the Push-up Liner in action for yourself!

  • Harumi Yamaguchi and Adam Selman

    Posted by Reem Permalink

    Designer Adam Selman showed what Harper’s Bazaar is calling one of the most fun shows of NYFW so far and the inspiration behind the refreshing S/S 2015 collection was 1980s fashion illustrations by Harumi Yamaguchi. While Selman is now a household name thanks to that Swarovski crystal encrusted, nipple-baring gown Rihanna wore to the CFDA awards, the designer is more interested in dressing the girl about town than the celebrity crowd. For his first runway show, Selman apparently found a great muse in Yamaguchi’s illustrations, which depict liberated, sophisticated and stylish women. There’s a youthful sense of play involved in Yamaguchi’s renderings. The artist captures sensuality with an urban tone. I for one was inspired by the feminine beauty and raw elegance of Yamaguchi’s girl.

    Yamaguchi came out with a book in 1978, published by Parco, entitled Harumi Gals, in which Yamaguchi depicted pin-up girls with impeccable makeup that show a timeless statement of beauty, very much relevant and resonant with today’s girl as it would be in 1980. There is little else to be found online regarding Yamaguchi other than in Vogue Italia, 1983, in which her airbrushed illustrations appeared in a Krizia ad.

    Selman’s point of inspiration is the gift that keeps on giving not simply because of his striking, playfully sexy collection but because the designer knows how to successfully channel his inspiration with a strong point of view all his own.

    (L) Adam Selman. (R) With Rihanna after his S/S 15 show.

     

    All Runway -  Adam Selman S/S 2015.

     

    All illustrations by Harumi Yamaguchi. (R) Cover of Harumi Gals.

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Yamaguchi for Krizia, Vogue Italia, 1983.

  • YSL Kiss & Blush Review

    Posted by Reem Permalink

    Yves Saint Laurent beauty may have taken their cues from ladies of the 1920s with the Kiss and Blush, their first multi-use cosmetic. Watch the video for the review and to see the product in action!

  • The September Issue

    Posted by Reem Permalink

    Since it’s that time of year again I was prompted to re-watch The September Issue, directed by R.J. Cutler, the A&E Indie produced documentary follows Anna Wintour and the Vogue team as they prepare the 2007 September issue with Sienna Miller on the cover. Some argue that the documentary didn’t portray Wintour in the most flattering light in respect to her creative counterpart Grace Coddington. In the film, Wintour is seen cutting exemplary work from some of the most creative and talented professionals in the industry. Right in the beginning of the film, Wintour kills an editorial with models Chanel Iman and Hilary Rhoda and as the doc progresses it becomes clear that every aspect of the magazine – and most of the industry as a whole – is filtered through Wintour’s critical gaze.

    There are no perfect relationships and to me, working partnerships are some of the biggest examples of this rule. The film makes it apparent that Wintour is the tastemaker, the trend forecaster, the influencer, all the social media era buzzwords that surround current social media fashion personalities - but on an epic scale. Coddington is the couture loving, romantic, creative “genius” as Wintour herself calls her. Together, the two are the perfect creative and branding balance that have kept Vogue as prolific and relevant as it’s been through the years. While many were quick to judge Wintour’s portrayal upon the film’s release, the fact remains that Wintour’s discerning tastes and no-nonsense business approach is the only way to be as the single most important figure in fashion. After all, the thrill of a no-holds-bared documentary on Wintour is not only exciting because of behind the scenes access to shoots and appearances from the likes of Karl Lagerfeld, Stefano Pilati, Patrick Demarchelier and others, but an insider’s view of just how influential Wintour is. Coddington shares that Wintour was the first to move towards putting celebrities on the cover rather than models. "Personally, I don't care if I never see another celebrity,” says Coddington, "but if the magazine doesn't sell, I don't have a job. You've got to have something to put your work in; otherwise it's not valid.” Interestingly enough, Vogue’s current September issue has not one but three models on the cover. Charging in to the future, as Wintour is apt to do, the headline declares “The Instagirls!” demonstrating the interesting shift in fashion culture that social media has given way to. More and more models are becoming household names and therefore are celebrities simply due to the sheer amount of off-runway exposure.

    There are many fantastic scenes; a conceptual meeting for the cover shoot between Wintour and Mario Testino at The Ritz in London, a breakfast with Nieman Marcus executives at which Wintour tells those in company that she has spoken with Prada regarding more consumer friendly fabric choices for the new collection. The doc is also ripe with delightful vintage influence and tidbits; there are shots of Coddington’s early career as a model after she got her start winning a Vogue model search, a 1920s inspired shoot with Coco Rocha is depicted. In perhaps one of the most defining points of the narrative, Coddington incorporates one of the cameramen in an editorial that seems to homage Richard Avedon who was known for his action shots, leaping and prancing around the studio with his models.

    Coddington’s astute creativity can in part be attributed to her great teachers, one being famed photographer Norman Parkinson whom she says told her to constantly observe the world around her. “Always keep your eyes open,” shares Coddington from the back of a car driving through Paris. “Keep watching because whatever you see can inspire you.”

    (L) Jean Shrimpton and Jeanloup Sieff for Vogue by Richard Avedon, 1967. (R) Twiggy and Richard Avedon for Vogue US, July 1967.

     

    (L) September Issue cameraman Bob Richman with Caroline Trentini, Vogue, September 2007. (R) Grace Coddington on the cover of Vogue.

  • 1960s Cheryl Tiegs Inspired Braid

    Posted by Reem Permalink

    I was inspired by the fall 2014 beauty trend reports and this stunningly romantic photo of Cheryl Tiegs from 1967 to attempt this covetable and stylish braid. This plait looks all grown up but is still a fun and different updo when you’re on second day hair or are just looking to try something new. If you followed the F/W 2014/2015 NYFW LFW or PFW shows you already know the styling possibilities are endless. Watch the video and try this look out!  

  • Vintage Couture Available In the Shop Now!

    • 1960s Gina Fratini Lace Trimmed Floral Print Dress
    • 1971 Red Giorgio Sant' Angelo Medieval Collection Dress
    • 1920s Heavily Beaded & Sequin Silk Chiffon Flapper Dress
    • 1980s Bruce Oldfield Red & Gold Silk Gown
    • 1970s Janice Wainwright Silver Lurex Dress
    • 1978 Sexy White Knit Courreges Maxi Dress
    • Rare 1960s Sybil Connolly Silk Ruffle Dress
    • Rare 1950s Jacques Heim Lace Cocktail Dress
    • 1960s Emilio Pink Pucci Caped Set
    • 1960s Emilio Pucci Silk Tunic & Pant Set
    • 1950s Puff Sleeve Lace and Silk Cocktail Dress
    • 1810-1820 Antique Silk Guaze Shawl
    • 1950s Sequin & Bead Pink Fitted Dress
    • Early 1970s Louis Feraud Velvet Suit
    • 1960s Courreges Haute Couture Suit
    • Rare 1950s Numbered Haute Couture Pierre Balmain Button Back Suit
    • Handmade Vintage Dior Fabric Clutch
    • Handmade Silk 1980s Scarf Clutch
    • Handmade Studded 1970s Silk Clutch
    • Rare 1950s Early Pauline Trigere Silk Set
    • 1950s Marshall Field & Co Silk Satin Dress
    • 1950s Silk Satin Harvey Berin Dress
    • 1960s Pink Silk Chiffon Travilla Gown
    • 1950s Yellow Beaded Satin Wiggle Dress
    • 1950s Hand Beaded Silk Column Gown
    • 1981 Michaele Vollbrach Silk Skirt & Top
    • 1960s FormFit Emilio Pucci Tank & Pants
    • 1980s Adele Simpson Floral Print Silk Skirt & Tunic
    • 1990s Vivienne Westwood Corset Set
    • 1970s YSL Silk Tiered Skirt Bow Dress
    • 1990s Gianni Versace Couture Mini Dress
    • 1950s Silk & Jersey Hip Panel Dress
    • Vintage 1950s Silk Brocade Exotic Clutch
    • Vintage 1930s Silky Rayon Floral Clutch
    • Vintage Pink & Gold Silk Brocade Clutch
    • Vintage Blue Silk Brocade Fold Clutch
    • 1970s Rare Early Norma Kamali Jumpsuit
    • 1970s Travilla One Shoulder Jersey Gown
    • c1965 Numbered Christian Dior London Simple Silk Dress
    • 1970s Alfred Bosand Silk Gown and Cape
    • 1980s Strapless Ruffled Pastel Silk Mignon Gown
    • 1970s Rudi Gernreich Plunge Knit Dress
    • Vintage Black Silk Brocade Clutch
    • 1950s Sophie of Saks Silk Bow Dress
    • 1950s Daisy Sweetheart Bust Black Dress
    • 1960s Red Brocade Unusual Sleeve Dress
    • Stunning 1980s Chanel Ribbon Silk Petal Dress
    • 1960s Harvey Berin Heavily Beaded Gown
    • 1970s Estevez Pink Jersey Strapless Dress
    • 1960s Silk Chiffon Tiered Dress w Capelet
  • 1970s Inspired Metallic Smoky Eye

    Posted by Reem Permalink

    Metallics have been dominating the runways and prove a stunning alternative to the classic, dark smokey eye. This shimmery makeup look references 1970s beauty without going disco. This week I show my new fall evening makeup go-to, which is a little bit bond girl and a whole lot of sparkle.

  • Lauren Hutton | The First Exclusive Cosmetic Contract

    Posted by Reem Permalink

    Lauren Hutton for Revlon, 1969.

    It’s commonplace for celebrities and models to acquire all sorts of endorsements but the very first time such an exclusive contract was inked between a model and a company was actually initiated by the model herself. Lauren Hutton needs no introduction. Known for her trademark gap tooth smile and fresh-face all-American beauty, Hutton was a 1970s superstar. She was a regular at studio 54. Halston dubbed her “perhaps the most perfect mannequin in history.” Beyond her all-American beauty gracing the pages of Vogue for decades, Hutton paved the way for super models to obtain lucrative exclusive contracts. She was the first million dollar supermodel. To me, the very best part is that Hutton is a true rag to riches story. Hutton grew up in the swamplands of Florida. She was a tomboy and illiterate until the age of eleven. She ventured out to New York in the early ‘60s to get to Africa and find LSD, she has said in interviews. Adding that she had never taken the drug but felt that she would enjoy it. Hutton wanted to travel and saw modeling as a way to accomplish just that, so she worked at the New York Playboy club and put together a portfolio, making the rounds to all the major agencies. She got her break in 1966 when Diana Vreeland spotted her and promptly sent her for a test shoot with Richard Avedon. The rest is history.

    More established in her career, Hutton read a New York Times article about a man who received a million dollar contract for his line of work. She wondered how she could manage such a thing and voiced the idea to Richard Avedon. The photographer encouraged her to make her arrangement with Revlon exclusive (she had already previously modeled for them in several campaigns over the years prior). In 1973 Hutton successfully pitched the idea to Revlon and became the face of the brand, she would stay on for a decade. The model was 31-years-old at the time and initially inked the deal for $400,000.

    Hutton approaches life with a fearlessness that’s both inspiring and endearing. A woman not only physically beautiful but intelligent and above all else boldly takes risks. Her high energy and boisterous spirit attracted people to her, made her persevere in times when life handed her a bad hand and once she achieved success, helped her recognize and increase her own value.    

    1967.

     

    Seventeen Magazine, October 1967.

     

    (L) 1976. (M) Photo by Richard Avedon, 1978. (R) 1979.

     

    Photo by Richard Avedon, 1973.

     

    (L) 1978. (M-R) dates unknown.

     

  • YSL Touche Eclat

    Posted by Reem Permalink

    In 1992 iconic makeup artist and innovator Terry de Gunzburg developed the world’s first light reflecting highlight pen while working as the international director of creation and marketing for Yves Saint Laurent cosmetics. Now 22 years later the Touche Eclat remains one of the most hailed beauty products on the market. While many use it as both a concealer and a highlighter, it’s far more effective as a highlighter. Use a regular liquid or cream concealer on dark under eyes and just subtly touch up under eye shadows with the Touche Eclat to ensure flawless coverage. Watch the video to see this iconic product in action. I have definitely found my Holy Grail highlighting product!

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