Happy Holidays


Saturday, December 25, 2010

Wishing you a Happy and Joyous Holiday filled with Style!


RiRi's Lookin' Good: Two Vids (Icon Inspiration Project)


Friday, December 3, 2010

I'm really liking how Rihanna is styled in these two videos, "Only Girl (In The World" and "Rude Boy". Together, they are contrasting opposites at the same time showcasing the same thing, Rihanna's sassy and sex appeal. One is soft, the other hard, both musically and sartorially. Good job on the fashionable perfectionism, Ri!


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"Influencers: The Documentary"


Thursday, December 2, 2010

  I see influence abounding all around me all the time. I have often wondered how this visceral sense I have about it weaves its way into an intellectual and concise actuality. Its the contiguousness of creativity, I believe, and to me, thats beyond...good.

Please take a look at this great documentary about how creativity and influence thrives in our culture/world. Click *here* to view "Influencers: The Documentary", a film by R+I Films.





Thursday, November 25, 2010

at the "Fashion is Art" Gallery Exhibit
wearing a print tank by Theory, top by Plastic Island, vintage Dior clutch
photo by Catherine Asanov
Happy Thanksgiving!

I am thankful to you for coming here and being an integral part of my fashion world and for allowing me to share my world with you.
I truly hope that you continue to embrace my ethos of living: "look good, feel good, in style" and spread the feel good!




Wednesday, November 24, 2010

I saw someone wearing the very same trench coat that I was this morning and it got me thinking about the saturation of great sartorial ideas in the market, and how it finally and actually trickles down to the masses. I began thinking of how this very different person could be wearing the exact same trench as mine, the one I wear with love to death. I began thinking of how, just the other day, I spied another person, very different in many ways, wearing an entire outift almost indentical to mine (different choices but same stylistic layout) and how *that* sartorial situation could have come to pass. I began questioning just how individual is my visual presentation, fashionably speaking. How does another person with a different life be attracted to similar fashion choices and keep their personal expression intact?
I think that fashion as an entire presentation is really a jovial carnival of choices. We get to ride on the ferris wheel of fashion and pick and choose when we want to get on or off, and to which heights we want to go. We also get to choose how we want to take these choices and present them to the world.  The whole carnival gets its joy from the revelry of its hall of mirrors, because at its center, fashion is visual, and it thrives on this point and grows and transforms from it. So what if another person makes the same choice as you do; its the freedom of it all that suggests it, begs for it, actually needs it to survive. It is a living, breathing entity of indivisuality, with many bodies, many minds, many expressions, many looks, and many styles.

I celebrate not only mine but your indivisuality; let it shine up the world and make you smile when you see another in the same thing as you. After all, its a reflection of you and your greatly smart fashion choices.

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I'm A Comforted Creature


Tuesday, November 9, 2010

a look at the new CoC NYC boutique
(photo courtesy CoC)
In the grand scheme that is Los Angeles retail, there is a place amongst it that aims to be all about ease, simplicity, and comfort. One of my favorite boutiques here, Creatures of Comfort, is that place. The well edited and appointed boutique on Melrose is my go-to source for many of my favorite contemporary lines, like Alexander Wang, Zero + Maria Cornejo, Christian Wijnants, and United Bamboo (to name a few) as well as the best place to get a pair of Repetto's (their selection is fantastic and varied beyond the usual suspects). They recently opened a NYC boutique, which means their inventory has grown and now serves a bi-coastal contemporary/androgynous aesthetic. I've recently scored a few Alexander Wang items, my birthday outfit (a wonderful silk jumpsuit by Complex Geometries), a pair of navy and white United Bamboo ankle boots, and my fall season go-to jacket, an Acne silk/linen blazer (oversized a la Carrie Bradshaw in SATC 2), and some great pieces for a client's recent photo editorial. The shop girls are smart and very helpful and non-intrusive. They tell
me that the clientele is easy and comfortable and come in just to hang (all signs of a great store IMO). They have an online store as well but a visit to the store is a must. I tell you, I just adore this place!

Creatures of Comfort NYC 205 Mulberry St. New YorkNY 10012

Creatures of Comfort LA 7971 Melrose Ave. Los Angeles, CA 90046

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Fashion's Night..In


Monday, November 1, 2010

We recently celebrated the second version of Fashion's Night Out, and tonight, as launched by Vogue UK, is "Fashion's Night In", an ingenious "cousin" of the global shopping event. What better way to celebrate future shopping trends then via e-commerce? There will be tons of sales and special offers being extended by various retailers for shopping in on the web this evening. Although mainly concentrated in the UK, the event is truly global because its happening on the internet. So join in on the fun and shop in tonight.

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Saved By Zero


Friday, October 29, 2010

Fall 2010 Collection
photo courtesy style.com
Fall 2010 Collection
photo courtesy style.com
I had the opportunity yesterday to visit the brand new Zero + Maria Cornejo boutique on Melrose Place. A long time fan of Maria Cornejo's fantastic modern style, it was a very real treat to get to peruse the whole collection live and in person, to touch and feel the great clothing and accessories. Carrying both the men's and women's lines, as well as jewelry from Saltalamacchia, the boutique offers shoppers the chance to get to know the work of Cornejo. The collection is very modern and contemporary, yet is subtle and organic in its approach and execution. Some of my favorites, like the jumpsuits (for both men and women) and the dress collection have an edge over other contemporary lines found here in the LA market. The Fall 2010 color palette of black, grays, camel with pops of blues and yellows and Cornejo's fantastic prints bring it all together.
Take a look at the website and stop by 8408 Melrose Place in West Hollywood and let Zero + Maria Cornejo save your next sartorial conundrum.
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Blog Action Day 2010: It's a Wide, Wet, Water World


Friday, October 15, 2010

Blog Action Day - Oct 15 2007Image by datalove via FlickrOne of my favorite books of all time, "Dune", by Frank Herbert, deals (on one of its many layers) with a planet in the futuristic universe, Arrakis, the Desert Planet, from which a fierce race of people living within the planets cooler inner realms have been harnessing a precious commodity for their own planetary survival. No, not the geriatric "spice-melange" but water. The Fremen people of Arrakis, used to living on a harsh world of unending days of heat and sun and sand, have been harnessing water because of its scarcity and the promise of a new world it could bring them. They place an immense value on water, making it their true precious resource and someone with large amounts of water is one who is beyond wealth. The Fremen would even kill for water. Because it is scarce and precious, water has become the ultimate value to them.
When I first read the book (and the subsequent series), I was immediately struck by the ecology story. I became aware of the possibility of water and its intrinsic value, and became horrified at the possibility of living on a planet with hardly any water. I became afraid of drying out, of thinking of having to live below ground and hording water. I became afraid of thinking that war and genocide would come over water. I was then aware that I was taking water and its presence here on my planet for granted. I, at that moment, began to explore the truths of water conservation and the global effort to preserve and save this truly precious commodity here on Earth.
As a reader here, you may have seen the widgets I have posted on my site in support of water conservation and awareness. This is an important cause for me, and I hope for you as well. I have decided to take part in Blog Action Day this year because the cause we as a global blogging community are focusing on and discussing Water. It is VERY important. It is vital to our Health, our Humanity, to our Planet. Water is such an integral part of world; we are made of it. Water permeates every fabric of our Being. There are billions of people who do not even have access to clean water now. This is unfathomable to me. How can this be? Well, its easy to be true in actuality. Our Water Planet is drying up at alarming rates, people are having to live in remote places because of many different factors but mainly because they are on a search for clean water sources. Industrial pollution is contaminating water sources and making these sources no longer viable. We are wasting large amounts of water on trivial exploits or just simply polluting the sources we have unwittingly. Please take a moment to visit http://blogactionday.change.org/ and find out more about what you can do to help bring more awareness of the important of Water and the efforts put forth for conservation and outreach.
I want to thank everyone who has visited the widgets here and contributed to charity:water, which I have been involved with for two years now, and I hope you continue to do so.
Lets not take Water for granted. Lets make an effort to keep ourselves moist and vital, and keep the story of a distant desert planet in the annals of fiction and not reality, for if we do not take the steps now, we may be calling Earth by a new name: Dune.
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New Impression: 944 Magazine


Friday, September 17, 2010

 Have you seen the newly re-vamped 944 Magazine? If you are local to the hotspots of Las Vegas, Los Angeles, San Diego, or Miami (all nightlife-centric places), or just browse their publication online, then you  may be familiar with 944 Magazine and its extensive coverage of whats happening in the nightlife scene. I would pick up the magazine on rare occasion, mainly to laugh at the many photos of party people who, in my opinion, should be at home in bed on a Tuesday night rather than at the latest shindig attended by Paris Hilton for the umpteenth time, but I am shocked and rather impressed with the new direction the magazine has taken. They have grown up. (Its about time). They have a new editor, who has moved the focus of the magazine from nightlife to lifestyle. Fashion is now front and center. Editorial is much more streamlined and stylized, and tells a story (somewhat). There are new stylists and graphic designers. The writing, well, there's writing. It has taken a new and better shape. Kudos! Check it out online or better yet, pick up an issue. They're still free and all over town. And, there's still nighlife photos for comedy sake...
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Eastern Trading Company: The Influence of Asian Designers


Wednesday, September 15, 2010

 What makes the fashion industry is its melting pot of cultures and nations, coming together to create these wonderful things we call clothing for our economic and sartorial consumption. It is a reflection of our own culture, I believe. We are a nation of diversity and a culmination of multi-cultures and generations. We as people influence each other constantly. So, it is no wonder that Asian designers are, in my opinion, the current driving force of influence in fashion today. This influence has been on a continual flux throughout the years but has reached a new apex in the past few. Don't mistake me, there have always been Asian designers in America, it is just that they now command a strong and much deserved presence on the International scene.

Coming of age in the 90s, I was treated to the fashion exuberance of Anna Sui, who for me broke the mold when it came to being ethnic and being successful in the fashion business. I was inspired by her efforts and loved her cool urbane "goth girl" chic, both in her personal style and in the great clothes she presented on the runway. Still working successfully today, Anna Sui continues to grow and push the envelope, and paved the way for the new kids on the block. Also like Anna, Vivienne Tam also set the stage. I remember going to the Vivienne Tam store in SoHo in 1995 and loving the shop and its expressive pops of color and  "Tam Dynasty" chic. She continues to influence others today as well. Her use of color and texture is indicative of this, and is one of the few major designers who is not afraid to use these tools to shape and evolve her collections, making them the hallmark of her design aesthetic. The Queen of the Wedding Dress, Vera Wang, solidified her influential place in the industry by working up through the ranks, starting in editorial work and then creating her own design business, focusing on gowns. Her designs became the epitome of specialty dressing, and you couldn't throw a stone at any wedding without hitting a Vera Wang dress. Today, she continues to dominate and influence the industry.

The NKOTB ("New Kids on the Block")--Alexander Wang, Phillip Lim, Jason Wu, Prabal Gurung, and Thakoon--have been setting the fashion stage on fire with each successive season they present. It is this new garde that are sending waves of influence rippling through the industry.
Thakoon, for example, was featured in "The September Issue", and we can see evidently here that he is a new industry darling and being shaped as such by the major players of it (namely Anna Wintour). His use of simple and definitive shapes means he knows instinctively how to create design that is new and defining, yet classic.
Not needing so much of a helping hand is Alexander Wang, who's signature New Urban look (skinny pant, slouchy top, fitted leather jacket) has become fashion standard and is worn by EVERYONE, EVERYWHERE. His new Spring/Summer 2011 Collection is so far my favorite of all shown during Fashion Week. It is fresh and minimal and is forward-thinking. He wanted to change the uniform he created and move it into a new arena, and I think he hit his mark perfectly. Aside from that, what Wang does in his design aesthetic is create futuristic yet classic shapes that really know how to blend with the body, rooted in American sportswear. His aesthetic is European, American, Asian: its Global.
Jason Wu has the distinguish of being a favorite of First Lady Michelle Obama. Having scored such an important (and prominent) client, he has solidified himself to the annals of American history, and contiunes to put Asian designers on the forefront. Mrs. Obama has worn Jason Wu time and again, and I'm sure its because he designs with an American woman in mind. Using color and fantastic draping, Wu creates designs that celebrate the woman.
New darling Prabal Gurung has come up in the ranks at an exponential pace. Also a favorite of Mrs. Obama, Gurung injects new uses of fabric and cut in his design aesthetic. Not afraid to experiment, Gurung does it with classicism and panache that lends his clothing to always be wearable and of-the moment.
Phillip Lim also is leaving an indelible mark on the fashion industry. His design aesthetic is fresh and clean and yet still directional, and very wearable. His Los Angeles store is a feast for the eyes and the sartorial haven as expected. His FNO  party last week was THE event to attend in Los Angeles, peppered with celebrities and Los Angeles style makers alike.

This influence can also be seen and felt by other Asian style makers in the business. ELLE Magazine's Creative Director, Joe Zee, has made that magazine into a true fashion source rival for Vogue, by injecting the magazine which much needed style and a fresh take on its design and presentation. Some of the best editorials in the past few years has come from ELLE. Not surprising since Mr. Zee brings a fashion stylist's detailed eye into the mix. And for me, ELLE has become the new Harper's Bazaar, or at least on par with the re-inventive Liz Tilberis years of that magazine. Two of my favorite fashion bloggers, Susie Bubble, and Jak & Jil's Tommy Ton, are also making their mark on the Asian influence game. Known for their individual style and irreverent viewpoint of fashion, these two bloggers sending ripples across the blogosphere with their mere mention of like (or dislike) of the sartorial persuasion, and their supremely self-indulgent fashion obsessions.

Influence is exactly what it is, influence. It is is the gasoline that fuels the creative machine. It drives us, as a people, and as creative beings forward. Influence not merely suggests but states itself into our thinking and shapes us to venture into new territory. Without it, I'm not sure if we would move forward.
I'm happy that influence has taken on an Asian shape. The new commercial market of mega-populated China is opening up this influence to a new generation as well. I'm sure this is only the beginning. And I can't wait for more.
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The New Center of Style


Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Fashion Week is under way for the Spring/Summer presentations in New York. The center of the fashion eye has sat for many years in Bryant Park, and I'm so happy that it has moved uptown (a bit west) to the fantastic Lincoln Center. In my opinion, this is the best and smartest move for the shows. It solidifies Fashion's place in the Arts, because it is Art.

[video courtesy of the New York Times (www.newyorktimes.com), and was produced by Shayla Harris]
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Michael Kors Fall 2010


Monday, September 13, 2010

I don't know what Mr. Kors was channeling when he came up with his Fall Collection but whatever it was, it was PERFECTION. This collection hit all of my Fall Fashion nails on the head: color (camel, gray, brown, green), texture (heavy knits, sheer, leather, fur), and luxury. This is how we should all look this season. Enjoy!
  (video courtesy of www.fnetwork.com)

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FNO: Fun Night Out and How to Do It Right


Friday, September 10, 2010

Its Fashion's Night Out tonight and its sure to be an eventful however way you choose to spend it. With the global shopping event making its sophomore turn this evening, retailers and the fashion world itself is pulling out all the stops to make sure fun and profit is the winning ticket this year.

With so many happenings going on, how do you work your night out? Tip #1--Plan it out. The best and most comprehensive lists I have found for Los Angeles events are at Refinery 29 and Racked. Listed there are the top events, with many of them sure to fill up fast.
This leads to Tip #2--Arrive early. The sooner you head out and hit the spots on your list, the easier it will be to get in and thru the register line and on to the next hot spot.
To help you thru, Tip #3--Dress "Shopping Appropriate" is key. Ladies should wear a tank top and leggings for easier fitting room try-ons. Guys should wear tank tops or a V-neck T shirt and briefs for the same reason. Keep the colors simple and neutral. Black is best. Wear comfortable shoes and bring a pair of boots and heels to get the full idea of how your items will look in their alternate incarnations.
With all of the party revelry  going on, make sure you follow Tip #4--Drink lots of Water and Snack, to avoid getting tipsy and falling into buyers remorse (or in LA, a DUI) from too much champagne. Believe me, the drinks will be flowing in the spirit of fun and of course, to loosen you up to open up that pocketbook. It's an old trick and it works. Tonight is also a great opportunity to check out stores you haven't had a chance to in your normal shopping behavior: Tip #5--Be Adventurous. Try and check out a few shops that haven't been on your shopping radar. This year in LA, shops in Venice's Abbot Kinney Blvd, Los Feliz/Silver Lake, and the eastern stretch of Melrose Avenue are taking part in the fun. Be adventurous and peek in, you may find that extra special something in these neighborhoods, or your new favorite store.
Most of all: Tip #6--Have Fun! Wherever you are, be safe and do have fun.

I will see you out in the Fashion Wilderness...

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Rockin' Night Out


Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Its the second time around for Fashion's Night Out, and this year, the shopping event stakes a bigger claim in Los Angeles. More retailers are taking part and throwing their own parties and events. Melrose Avenue will be rockin' a bit next Fiday night at the Salsa Fits My Life store. See the flyer attached and make sure to RSVP if you'd like to attend. It is sure to be fun!
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Behind the Scenes: Broncolor Photographers Event


Friday, August 6, 2010

Check out the behind the scenes video from the Broncolor Event that I took part in last month. If you've been wondering about how much fun (and work) goes into a fantastic photo editorial, check this out. I'm so proud to be an integral part of this monthly artistic event and am looking forward to the next one. What a great bunch of photogs, models, makeup artists, stylist (ok, shameless plug), and babies!!!

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Bright Young Thing


Friday, July 2, 2010

Yesterday marked the first day that Lola Leon, Madonna's prodigious young daughter, publicly blogged. As fantastic as this feat is, this is just a "quiet" announcement of her official arrival, in her own voice. I know for sure that this not the first or last that we will hear from Lola, but also that we all need to gird ourselves for her sartorial onslaught. As creative director of the Material Girl line, she's the hands and brains behind how Madonna's fashion foray captures us. And with the Mother of Reinvention as your Mom, there is no end to the source from which she gets to pull her style knowledge from. Just looking at her first post and her inspiration board for the collection, its evident what influences her (and us for quite some time) and what will drive the look and feel of Material Girl. As cute and kitschy as the line appears to be, I am interested in watching it develop and change form, like its young director will. Young. Fresh. Vibrant. Sounds like the future...
Welcome Lola, to the Fashion "Blognoscenti".

(photo via www.blog.materialgirlcollection.com/uncredited)
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Resort-ing to New Heights


Wednesday, June 30, 2010

The recent resort collection presentations have really set a brand new stage for fashion in the marketplace. With the major fashion houses actually paying attention to consumer need (and demand) of having product available in all seasons (and all markets) and presenting resort collections (or transition collections in retail), those of us sartorial minded beings get another whopping dose of fashion. My favorite pieces over the past ten years have all come directly or indirectly from the resort collections. What once was only available for the months before and after the holiday shopping season as "limited" release, Resort has grown to be its own fashion entity. It has become the "preview" of what we'll be wearing in the warmer months, as such, a prelude to Spring. Yet in the disjointed "fashion timeline", these collections are shown after we have had just a short time to process the Spring/Summer collections that are in the current markets. This could lead to fashion confusion or inspiration, depending on how you see it. In all my years in retail, I would always steer my clientèle to invest in Resort pieces as the special additions to their wardrobe because of their "inspiring essence". Resort pieces are different and unique because they merely come out to "play" in the designers' complete oeuvre.  And "playing is what one should be doing in Resort. These collection themselves are rooted in fun and fashion frivolity, but also in an edited and streamlined approach to wardrobing (ie travel clothes). In Resort, you want to be light and carefree. And what could be more fun..?

For a more in-depth and complete report on the Resort collections by the fantastic Cathy Horyn, please click here. There is also multimedia and a slideshow presentation of the collections of note.
Let them inspire you to play...


Men's Fashion Week-Milan : DSquared2


Monday, June 28, 2010

I absolutely love the DSquared2* show, just presented at Men's Fashion Week in Milan.
It's theatrical, modern, and celebrates the return of the well groomed man, albeit as the quintessential  lothario/gigolo/bachelor type, complete with his latest seductive conquests at his side. Unlike the male models of recent seasons, the men cast here in DSquared's show are well...men: athletic, coiffed, and tailor made to wear Dan and Dean Caton's modern men's collection. Take notes, because this is how men should and will be dressing next Spring.
(*video courtesy of T Magazine/NYTimes; photo credit: Alberto Pizzoli/Agence France-Presse-Getty Images)

Who's Lovin' Woo?


Sunday, June 27, 2010

I recently attended LA fashion designer Staci Woo’s annual Poolside Event in Santa Monica. Held in a gorgeous private home and its very French yard and pool, I was able to view Staci current collection and shop selected current and previous season’s items at a fantastic 40% discount. There were other specially selected vendors there such as Kai Skincare, handcrafted artisan jewelry, and specialty swim wear, to name just a few. The elegantly catered fare and beautiful surroundings and coastal weather all added to the fun and atmosphere of Woo’s Poolside Event. Private sales such as these are a fantastic and welcomed treat in LA, and really is a very special and intimate way to get to know a brand, and the brains behind it. 
Staci has been in the business for over 15 years, and her line has expanded to include not only womenswear but also childrenswear. Being a Mother herself definitely contributed to her starting a children’s line but her offerings stand out in that they are well tailored, classic, sourced and made with the best materials (much of it organic) and all fit perfectly in the brand’s beach aesthetic. 

I attended the event with Woo’s exclusive model (and my friend) Marie and my sidekick Angela, who both tried on many of the items at the sale. A great time and fabulous goodies were had, and I'm looking forward to the next event, cause I'm lovin' Woo.


Le Roi est Mort


Friday, June 25, 2010

It goes without saying how much I have been influenced by this true icon. He shaped me in his way as a dancer, a musicologist, and a fashion stylist. I am always reminded of the joy he brought to people everywhere and how he touched many lives. His legacy will live on forever, and his influence will be ever reaching, and he is still very much missed.

Vanity Fair just released a fantastic article on his iconic "Thriller" video, please read it here.

Michael Jackson, "In The Closet" music video (featuring supermodel Naomi Campbell); directed by Herb Ritts  (video via MichaelJacksonVevo/YouTube)

Continue to rest and be peaceful...
(photo credit: Arno Bani, via DailyMail UK/EPA)

Focus On: Janelle Monáe


Thanks to the imitable style of R+B's Neo Soul genre, there has been a plethora of artists who have come onto the scene blazing their individuality in spades. Thanks to pioneering female artists, like Jill Scott and India.Arie, showing who you are has never been more in vogue.

There are so many ways we can be sexy and confident. I am not faithful to any of the clothes that the world says I have to wear to be more feminine. Strength and femininity come from me, not my clothes.
-Janelle Monáe

Taking her cue from the Mother of Neo Soul, Erykah Badu, Janelle Monáe* steps proudly and naturally in to her fashion and musical footsteps. Sporting classically contemporary androgynous looks and rocking the funk out of a pompadour, Janelle Monáe takes us on a fashion journey that's all about tailoring. Her favorite look is a menswear inspired three piece and polished oxfords and is perfection in it! 
She matches her sartorial daring to her music, which is also funky, androgynous, contemporary, and tailored to her own aural story: playing a persona who comes from the 24th Century sent back to our time to bring musical/spiritual awareness to help save Humanity via an android, all to lift our spirits to higher heights. 

Where Erykah is Earth Mother, Janelle is Future Cosmos Daughter and can easily be the other side of the same coin. Take a look at her fantastic and stylish short film, "Many Moons" and the equally sartorial music video for "Tightrope" to get a taste for yourself. Both videos are a sartorial examination of uniqueness in a collective aesthetic. 
And its downright pure funk.  Now that's what's feeling and looking good is all about.

(photo credit: Marc Baptiste/D.R. Mgmt/ 944 Magazine)
*please read the 944 Magazine article by clicking on Janelle's name above

White Out-Summer 2010


Wednesday, June 23, 2010

I can’t escape the lure and appeal of wearing all white in the heat of the summer months. To me it is fresh, clean, crisp, and just exudes the coolness the warmth of summer weather needs to temper it. And from what the greater fashion populace has been relaying to the masses, the same sentiment exists. Why not take your cue now and get into the great White Out.

Here are some key tips to remember:
  • Be mindful of your fabric choices in summer. Stay in the naturals: linen and light weight cotton are pretty much the tried and true staples of the season.
  • Pairing colors with white will heavily stand out. Try just a tiny pop, as in a skinny belt or scarf, or keep it off the body and wear your color in your hair or as your bag
  • Carry a Tide bleach pen and baby wipes in your bag with you for “slips and giggles”
  • Don’t be afraid to show some skin with your white. Utilize nature’s contrast of playing your skin tone against the pale clothing canvas.
  • Really play up your jewelry. This summer, go for the gold (necklace, bangle, bracelet, earrings)
 Check out these celebrity girls in summer's LWD (via InStyle's The Look) to get an idea.

Go outside in the summer sun and enjoy the white rays, and feel good.

 (photo: Prada S/S 2010, courtesy Vogue.com UK)

Focus on: Jenna Bryson


Friday, May 28, 2010

For months, I have had many fun times in my Jazz dance class with this lovely young lady, Jenna Bryson perfecting our pirouettes together. You can guess my surprise when one day she and I got to speaking and I found out that she is a very talented and accomplished musician, with a voice that comes from some great and wonderful place inside, full of verve and passion and effervescence. I have not been able to stop listening to her music, and I know you will love it too! 
With her immense talent, she has managed to break the top 20 in the Lillith Local Talent Search, and Jenna has a very strong shot at going out on the Lillith Fair Tour this summer but she needs your votes and help to make it there. 
Here, in her own words and cute style which you will see in the video, she explains:

"Hey, Elgin!

My song "Me Minus You" made the top 20 in the Lilith Local Talent Search: Los Angeles, San Francisco, San Diego competition (out of 650 songs)! Amazing! Playing Lilith Fair (freakin' LILITH FAIR) would be a dream come true.

But the fight isn't over! My song needs to get to the top 10 by tomorrow, Friday night at 9pm PST --
the higher my song finishes, the more likely I am to get chosen to perform at Lilith.

Here is a link to a video tutorial I made on how YOU can help make this happen:

Or, if you prefer Facebook, visit the event page which lists the step-by-step process of how to participate in the judging as well as the tutorial video: http://www.facebook.com/#!/event.php?eid=121910457843787 "

It’s very simple and takes a just few minutes. And it is helping this very talented woman to achieve a dream of hers. If she makes it, I'm sure we can persuade her to do a double pirouette on stage at Lilith... 

And OurStage is a great site for new and emerging artists. There are some great artists all for the finding, so get there now and check them out and most importantly, don’t forget to vote for Jenna and help her making it to the top! We all have until 9PM TONIGHT because, it feels good to help shape a dream into a reality, doesn't it!?!


(photo credit:  Jeff Drongowski, courtesy of Jenna Bryson)

An ELLE of a Night


Thursday, May 27, 2010

with friend/fellow dancer Joe Zee, Creative Dir of ELLE Magazine
Los Angeles was all a-glitter Tuesday at A|X Concept Boutique on Robertson at the Disco Glam Event, brought to the Left Coast by ELLE Magazine Creative Director Joe Zee, who hosted THE fashion summer launch party featuring Dragonette rocking the stage.
Dragonette performs hits for the fashion  crowd

with actress/musician Taryn Manning and her glam friend
It was an extremely fun night, with the cream of the Los Angeles fashion scene in attendance and a mad dashed sprinkling of Hollywood celebrities like Kim Kardashian, Jamie Lynn Sigler, Taryn Manning, Golden Brooks, and Kelly Osbourne to up the fabulous quotient a few notches on the style scale (and doing their stylists very proud).

Joe Zee and Kim Kardashian
with Golden Brooks
Deciding to exude a “neutral” vibe, I wore a pale gray Helmut Lang sleeveless top, charcoal gray James Perse pullover, Current Elliot indigo denim leggings, and vintage Guess ankle low boots (still in pristine condition from 1987 and my “wink” of whimsy) a custom layered gold and silver multi-chain necklace, Cartier bangle, and brought out my favorite vintage Dior clutch (my accessories being my “glam”).
I loved how many attendees showed off their fashion smarts and really took to the theme of last night’s event. Sequins and shimmer were the standout style choices of the night. And in true Los Angeles style, the more dark and designer your denim, the better and more chic you were. I also loved how many guests were not afraid to wear some color to an evening event, moving forward from the tried and true black staples of night dressing.

with my sidekick, writer and stylist Angela Thompson
A great way to welcome the summer, thanks ELLE and A|X for the most fun a stylista could have on a Tuesday night!


*complete photo archives of the event can be found at these two great sites: Forward Fashion and LookBookLA

*photos taken by myself or where credited.

** a special thanks to Shadow PR LA/Claire Zimmerman 

The 50's Never Looked So Good


Wednesday, May 5, 2010

"Why Don't You Love Me" - Beyoncé from Beyoncé on Vimeo.

I have to post this because "B.B. Homemaker" hits the look out of the park!
Who knew the 50's looked this good: Beyonce hits every vintage retro-glam note pitch perfect, I think.
(video via Beyonce/Vimeo/2010 Parkwood Pictures)

A Culmination of All...


Friday, April 30, 2010

KENZO Paris--Spring/Summer 2010 Fashion Show

I have been watching this podcast repeatedly since I first viewed it back in December and knew that *this* is, for me, a culmination of all things that say Spring 2010. I absolutely love the entire presentation, even down to the strange burst of color on "colored" models, and the sunburst of gold, both symbolisms not lost on me.
I love how the collection is a mixture and culmination of all: prints, monchromaticism, texture, fabric, weight, and color. It is exuberant and elegant and is a perfect vision of wearability and style.
I am taking many cues from this in how I am doing Spring 2010, of course adding my own energy and attitude to it. I think Kenzo has done it PERFECT this season!!


(video/podcast via Fashion Network {http://fnetwork.com}



Friday, April 23, 2010

It takes a lot of bravery and gusto to wear a mash up of prints all at once. This is a bravery that I do not have in my personal style but one I can totally appreciate for its value and gosh darn it fashion gusto. I love the result of mixing prints and doing it full stop. Why I have not been able to pull it off my self is a tiny mystery but one that I'm sure boils down to my organized and meticulous desire for perfection (an obscured feat in reality). Yet here I am wishing I can mix prints with abandon. Ah!! There's the rub; do it with abandon! Or, just adhere to guidelines and learn how to make it look like it is done with abandon. I came across this extraordinary article in the New York Times and it has given me hope. Now, let's hope when I attempt to wear a print-tastic mash up, it comes out with full abandon...


(photo credit: David Roemer/New York Times)

The Icon Inspiration Series: Erykah Badu


Wednesday, April 21, 2010

I have been greatly influenced by the extreme talent and down right funk of Erykah Badu. I remember the first time, back in 1997, when I came across her and her music video for "On & On". I was instantly mesmerized. I felt a kindred affinity and become a follower to her musical and style gospel. I can't even begin to tell you how fast I started wrapping my head in colorful and printed fabrics, wearing that look for about three years at any time I could. This simple act, of inspired style daring and of mimicry, let me know that I really was (and still is) truly someone who understood her "Baduizm". Forward thirteen years later, and Erykah Badu still resonates in my personal lexicon. I love her music and its message of Unity and Experience, and of course, you cannot escape her fantastic fashion risk and daring.
She is Her Self:

No one else is like her and this is a reminder to me that Unique is definite, special, and something worth Being.

(photos via erykahbadu.com; video via pinboardblog.com/Hot 97 FM)

A|X Concept Store Launch/V Magazine Event


Tuesday, April 20, 2010

A fun time was had last Wednesday afternoon at the Armani Exchange Concept Store Launch and V Magazine Event. I took a quick jaunt over there to the Robertson Blvd. store and enjoyed looking at the new Spring A|X Collection. I also took part in V Magazine's Fall Issue back page photo essay, where event guests were photographed wearing Armani's new aviator shades. Reader's will be allowed to vote on what guest they'd like to see again in a future editorial! Being that I was not only shot for the photo essay but for a number of other shots (the photographer's camera enjoyed my funky style), I think I have a pretty good chance. We'll see. X your fingers!

(photo is of another guest being photo'd against the colorful backdrops installed for the essay, and the extremely stylish DJs in the back)

Spring Awakening: Looking At The Trends of Spring 2010


Monday, April 19, 2010

When it comes to Spring dressing, what is it that ignites our passion to change our fashion choices and shift those gears? Is it the inherent change in the weather alone? Is it the excitement to get out of the (by now) heavily practiced routines of protectively layered dressing that shout WINTER? Or is it the merely simple fact that Spring equates to new, a rebirth, a reawakening, and this ignites those fires in our fashion hearts to make a leap forward and cultivate a new season of style?
What jumps forth from the answers to these questions is the guidelines we have in fashion called trends. Every talent out there gets inspiration from a True Source, which is undeniable. When this inspiration begins to speak a common language, it becomes a trend. And trends tells us what is being spoken about the loudest and most consistently. What would we do without trends? How would we as a style collective be able to understand the language we speak? We come together and listen and discuss and focus on the "new".

Spring 2010 is ripe with this sentiment of the “new”. This is the first spring of a new decade. With that comes the fertile ground for very new seeds to grow and sprout in our fashion consciousness.  
I remember in the Spring of 1990 how this same tide washed over fashion. Back then, everything about the Nineties signaled a minimalist approach, as a reversion of the excess of the Eighties. Yet in Spring 1990, the shift was fast and abrupt. The esthetics of Calvin Klein (body conscious shift dresses) and Donna Karan (lycra bodysuit based layering) ruled, as did their monotone color palette of earthy neutrals.

We see this in the Neutrals trend, returning this new decade, and in a big way and in unexpected places. Neutral makes a whole lot of sense to me. I feel that everyone should always have some sort of neutral shade based in their wardrobe rotation through all of the seasons. This Spring, we get the special treat of indulging in neutrals in a head to toe manner. From pale peach beige, to camel, to dusty brown, neutrals are no longer showing up as accents but as the complete story. The neutral is smart and will easily take you from spring into summer, shifting your palette into the more striking neutral of white, summer’s staple. I have had a strong love affair with neutral tones for a very long time. Perhaps it became rooted in my fashion mind back then in Spring 1990 and hasn’t dislodge since.  I love it because of its ease in mixing. It allows me to experiment with textures and layers and provides me with a foolproof “map” in which to style my (Spring) wardrobe. Neutrals also allow me to really play up the exciting new color trends that always come full circle in the Spring. Pantone’s Spring 2010 Color Report has a detailed description and great synopsis of hue trends for the season. Use the colors to sprinkle “light” in your Spring palette, and, like me, use them to give vibrancy to your wardrobe.

Although not “new” to me but being lauded as the “new” trend for the Spring season, the Military look, is on the upswing again. I remember Military popping up in the early 2000’s, heavily rooted then in accessories and accent pieces. Now, the Military look has evolved more into what I would call “Warrior”. The look is reminiscent (or is it foretold) of “Mad Max”. That futuristic dystopia is ripe with the look: neutral colors, utilitarian leather, heavily “jeweled”/armored accessories, all accented in bits of tribal print and flashes of skin. Now let’s add the heavy influence of “Avatar” and mix it all up. That’s the new Military look. I suggest really making it your own, as the Military look really is the “accent” look of the season. Since it is made up of prints and texture and details/embellishments, really dive in and play it up.  Mix those tribal prints together and pair them with some neutrals to play them up, or mix in a flowing or gauze fabric with your structured coat or blazer. Or keep it simple and hit the mark right every time with your trench coat, wearing it with moto boots to rev up the look.
In speaking of prints, many of which we can find in the tribal trend (as mentioned above), there is also the flip side of prints, the Floral. For some reason, Florals bloom heavily in Spring, perhaps because it’s an unconscious mimicking of Nature. Floral for 2010 again nod to Bohemian, that look which grew in the Seventies and has never died.  I’ve never been one for Floral but one definitely for the Bohemian look, wearing it exclusively in Fall 1994 when it was making its big new decade come back. How do you make it your own? Do what I did and go exclusively vintage. That way, you find Florals that go with Bohemian, and vice versa. The key to Bohemian is the laid back approach in mixing. It’s Mama Cass and Stevie Nicks; loud, layered, printed, gutsy, unique.

Also rooted in the Seventies but given a re-boot is the Metallic trend. Again, not really “new” but in how we are to incorporate it into our warmer weather dressing is simple and full force: wear metallic regardless of day or night. This is your “bling” and is not intended to just hide away and come out in the evening, but is now meant to be worn in all manner: a sequined tank (in neutral shimmers and you’ve hit two-in-one) under your blazer to the office, a metallic Spring hued strapless dress with ethnic inspired flats on the week-end, or a sexy slick silver sequined dress for that night out. The Metallic trend is our way of exuding luxury and high style regardless of our individual (or collective) economic situation. In the Eighties, when Metallic appeared in their sparingly simple forms, the message designers were sending down the backs of Beverly Johnson and Iman were “glamour” and “elegance” and aimed to a particular set. Now, that message is given to every one of us-be your glamour and your elegance all the time.

The counterpoint to Metallic and another trend I’m all for (and try to subscribe to) is the “Leisure” trend. What is this? Well, it simply is dressing as if you are on holiday. This means layers based on the three piece model of a “power” suit but mixed in textures, fabrics, or even adding elements from some of the other trends like Bohemian or adding classic American prep to it. I like to think of it as the “L.A. Cool Uniform”: skinny premium denim jeans or jeggings, great organic cotton v-neck tee, long cashmere cardigan or shrunken wool or blazer, cool sandals or flats or ankle boots, a few strands of great necklaces, and tousled beach and sun kissed hair. This cool and fresh look really has appeal: it says “understated yet chic” and definitely is carried off with lots of your own attitude.

When it comes to fabric choices during the Spring, what always emerges is our sense of what will feel good against bare skin. I am a big fan of cotton, especially that which comes from a sustainable and organic source. I have written on this before, and have become a big advocate of organic. As I hope that this is not a trend but is in truth a fact, there is no better time of the year than the Spring to use your conscious and wear organic cotton (or silk or linen for that matter). What better to put against your bare skin than soft, quality organic cotton? In your search of organics you are sure to find great companies and designers who believe in maintaining integrity as well as artistry in their offerings.

Trends are just that: trends. They exist to inspire us into a more fresh perspective on what is traditional and classic. We utilize trends to push ourselves into trying out new things, creating a sort of style safety net with which we venture into newer territories. With trends we use their guidelines to form a new idea, a new look on ourselves as it were. Trends will change season to season and come back and disappear. We must remember that trends are here to help us inspire and play. And there is no better time of the year to get inspired and to play than in Spring. So go out and inspire and play. In the Sunshine, in the Springtime.


The Icon Inspiration Series


Sunday, April 18, 2010

Influence is all around us. It is there even if we don't look for it. It is natural for us to see in ourselves what influences and inspires us in all the areas of our lives. I have been taking a very examined look at what inspires and influences me and have come to a very deep appreciation for these inspirations. I feel that without them, I would not be as attuned and tapped in to my Creativity.

I am beginning an honor series called "The Icon Inspiration Series". Simply put, it is a dedicated space for the people, places, objects, and other things that Inspire and Influence me and my Creativity.
I hope that these things that ignite my passion and creativity will do the same for you, in their own supremely wise and magical way. Because really, we look to things that mirror in us what is good in feeling, and in how we look at ourselves and our world. And that's positively inspiring.



Thursday, March 18, 2010

It's Spring! Time to ask me anything on Formspring here: http://formspring.me/fggofstyle

Off to Market


Monday, March 15, 2010

Thinking about the places I shop, either frequently or infrequently, I notice that I go to these places out in the market because they resonate with my style. I have a very eclectic yet classic look. I don't buy too many trends, just ones that truly speak to my fashion heart and that can creatively express who I am. I have a shopping habit that was born out of the hyper 80's, where Consumerism reigned over everything. Now, with SO many consumer (or consumption) choices, shoppers can get lost in the sea of shops out there. Whether it be a brick-and-mortar store or an online haven, shoppers can't lose sight of what the focus is in the market: to get your dollars. But how do you give up your dollars and still keep yourself? You do it with style. I came across a memory that was poignant and indelible, and exactly about this.
It goes something like...

When I was fourteen years old, I literally stumbled upon a little store in downtown San Diego called GT General Store (or something of the like) where I found a pair of perfect white straight leg denim jeans by then uber-hot label Guess? Jeans. There was nothing wrong with them, in perfect condition, and only cost me $15. A friggin' steal! And it was well within my 14 year old allowance budget. I wanted to tell all my friends because I thought: "1. how cool! Guess? Jeans!! 2. oh my goodness, how awesome we could all match in our jeans! 3. NO! this is my secret, just for me. What if they get acid wash blue jeans in and then EVERYONE will get a pair and my size would be gone?! 4. oh no, I can't tell anyone that I got my jeans for $15! They'd think I were cheap! They can't know. 5. who's ever heard of GT General Store anyway, especially my baby yuppie friends? 6. they'd know I ventured to downtown and wonder why my parents would let me go down there by myself, or worse, my Mom actually took me there herself. 7. the store put my jeans in a plastic bag. Yes, definitely not something I'm telling anyone about. 8. eeew, there was actual sawdust on the floor. 9. i did get a bag of cinnamon bears by the bulk with my jeans so *score*! 10. General Store? Um, isn't that Old West? I'm definitely "New West"...so, this is gonna be MY secret.

I remember wearing those jeans to school and feeling all of those thoughts and a few more racing through my head. The most prevalent was how cool and great it was that I found a deal in the most unexpected place (and bulk cinnamon bears). A shopping seed was definitely planted. Now, this discovery took place in 1987 by a upper middle class ethnic baby yuppie kid from liberally conservative San Diego (that's a mouthful) who thought they were the crust and epicenter of all things fabulous, who's peer group resembled a gaggle of teens straight out of "Clueless" and "Heathers" (probably why I LOVE those movies because I see my young self in them), who, as I recall, would get dropped off at the mall (Fashion Valley) with our parents credit cards [(and permission note). oh goodness, if you remember having to use those then, touché!) and consume all things cool and anything befitting our (parents') economic stature (we ourselves didn't have any but we thought we did). In those early days, I was heavily influenced by luxury and designer retail. It was back then that I started collecting back issues of Vogue Magazine from my school's library, given to me by the librarian for my hard work and dedication to the school library (ok, I was in it for the Vogue) and began devouring the fashion knowledge found inside those hallowed pages. I kept a "fashion scrapbook" and cut out ads from the Sunday San Diego Union Tribune newspaper of ads for shops found in the mall or even better, in chic La Jolla. I aspired for myself to solely be a designer/luxury consumer. When I had my stumble and fall at GT General Store, I fell into a reality: fashion is about style, not about its substance.

When it comes to going shopping today, I am so thankful for having my consumer stumble and for not ignoring or burying it. I cannot imagine getting stuck in a buying rut, only patronizing one mall or one store to supply my look. In today's consumer market, there is an over saturation of choice, yes, but this saturation actually is about freedom. Freedom of choice, freedom of style, freedom of your wallet. How cool is it still to find that elusive bargain, or to discover that great vintage piece in the most unexpected place (online), or to find a dream designer piece at a clothes swap party, for free?
When it comes to shopping with your style, it should take you to as many places that it deems right within it. Whether you have a minimalist or an eclectic style, then you will go where that style dictates. You have to allow yourself to go to wherever your style leads you, no matter. If GT General Store were still open today, you can betcha bottom dollar I'd be frequenting that place. Whatever cool treasure I would find there, I'd happily mix it with any of my designer duds, to show it off in better light. And I would share my secret so you can have that feeling of style discovery too!

It is true, there is nothing like having that feeling of discovery.  And how good does that feel? It really is freedom. So go forth off to market and SHOP on!

McQueen Spring 2010


Friday, March 12, 2010

Here is a video of Alexander McQueen's final collection, for Spring 2010. Please also read the detailed article of the collection for its presentation in Paris here.

I think it is an amazing and cohesive capsule the house has gathered in the time they had. It is not short of brilliant (those shoes...).

May we all continued to be enthralled by his craftsmanship, talent, beauty, and art.
May he rest peacefully.

(video courtesy Fashionista.com)
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