Saturday, September 29, 2012

yohj jun VIV: S/S 13

To conclude this season's edition of YOHJ JUN VIV, Madame Westwood once again presented a veritable treasure trove of all things recognizably Westwood. Oddly enough, however, it were the two unexpected pieces below that caught my attention. I think Westwood will be the next label to be seen on Lady Gaga (or a Spice Girl), and I hope that there will be more Westwood lingerie in the works. I've been ridiculously obsessed with finding the perfect wireless lounging bra lately (Under the Root and Norwegian Wood get two thumbs up so far!), and would love a fairytale looking one like this to add to my collection. I would even consider doing my hair like a troll. (Just kidding.)

(Photos via SHOWstudio)

yohj JUN viv: S/S 13

Perhaps only hinted at by the neon wigs of last season, Junya Watanabe's S/S 13 collection completely took me by surprise. I've never seen this side of Mr. Watanabe before (or at least I can't remember ever have seeing it). And, quite honestly, if it weren't from Junya, I wouldn't have bothered looking through all 57 looks. I do not like this much colour, I only wear running shoes when exercising, and I dropped the sporty look after grade 9 (i.e. I'm not Susie Bubble - she's going to eat this collection up!). Having said that, I'm quite curious as to why Junya went in such a different direction than...all his other collections. It's true that I'm not always a fan of his non-outerwear, so it's not a huge deal that those looks don't float my boat, but I feel that these would be more expected in a Comme des Garçons collection than in his own. And, speaking of outerwear, there are only a couple coats resembling his signature style that keeps me coming back each season (see below), rather than an entire section of the show. At the risk of sounding hypocritical, Mr. Watanabe, how do we decipher this collection? Regardless of the answer, I believe that Stella McCartney for Adidas now has competition. Oh, and if you're wondering what I'm talking about, I obviously didn't post the colourful/sporty stuff (i.e. 99% of the collection) here. Click here to do that, if you're interested.

(Photos via

Friday, September 28, 2012

YOHJ jun viv: S/S 13

Yohji Yamamoto's S/S 13 collection symbolizes the modern woman's struggle to be successful in a capitalist society while still maintaining a connection to her inner goddess. Just kidding. Mr. Yamamoto's collection is the first one I've truly liked this season, particularly as he has, yet again, managed to maintain his established aesthetic while bringing in some new elements (raw edges, anyone?). I'd wear it all, in one form or another. 

(Photos via

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Carly Hunter: Ocean Noir

Goodness gracious, the collective fashion weeks have been such a snooze fest this round that I'm almost thankful I haven't had the time to pay attention to anyone's runway coverage (though I'm still counting on you, YOHJ JUN VIV...). When it comes down to it, unless you're a fashion god who has their own mythology (and is still adding to it) and has the both the ability and balls to create or re-imagine images/symbols/techniques/etc. that will change the fashion industry as a whole (Lee, here's looking at you, kid), seeing models clad in 'big name' labels going down the runway every six months just seems like a useless exercise that will inevitably produce the same mindless drivel, i.e. unwarranted lengthy narratives that amount to nothing but self-serving hogwash. Then again, I've always hated the big labels that are big just because we're told they are, and reading runway reviews is like reading 'top critic' film reviews - I can form my own opinion, and don't need to know what Mr. Big says about a film I'd never both watching anyway, so it's all just a waste of my time. Time that can be better spent translating Catullus, learning Italian, or reading about literary theory.

Anyway, I do always have time for designers such as Carly Hunter who keep it fresh and don't require us to mine our thesauri and symbol dictionaries to pinpoint just what she's trying to do. I like what I see, and I'd wear it if I could. And, the label is made both locally and ethically. The end.

(Photos via NJAL)

Monday, September 24, 2012

Tea time

Three weeks into my Masters, I've finally realized that it's going to be a lot of work to survive my graduate Latin course (especially if I want to do a PhD). I've learned to cope by constantly drinking some form of caffeine, particularly coffee tea (really, there's a tea with coffee in it - why have one when you can have both?!). Anyway, my man just posted this on my Facebook, and suddenly I don't care about my inability to scan Latin poetry (for 7:08 minutes, at least). Enjoy.


Monday, September 17, 2012

No Poetic Device (...again*)

New favorite alert! I actually discovered this talented New Zealander yesterday, but I seem to have become allergic to my own apartment (and/or the construction site next door) and felt like I, like in the video for this collection, was in a fever hospital. I.e. the bajillion Latin poems I was to translate this weekend did not get translated, and the 800-1000 word report that was due by 7PM tonight was submitted at 6:48PM today. Sigh. 

In any event, you must know about Brooke Barrett and her A/W 12 collection, entitled 'Lucid Existence'. Personally, I'm particularly drawn to Brooke's Pleated Singlet Dress (seen in the top two photos of this post). I'm sure you're tired of me harping on the hi-lo/mullet trend, but this is the only way it should be done. In a Marc le Bihan-meets-Patricia Ayres sort of way. That is, the Brooke Barrett way. The tricky thing is that all the pieces in this collection not only look very wearable, but also look like they were meant to be worn together (as seen on the runway, below). Tricky because, I can't buy them all. Well, I 'can' in the sense that most of the pieces are available on Etsy (where I found Brooke, via a Treasury that 1/2 Ration added to their favorites). But, let me tell you, good air purifiers are gorram expensive.

(Runway photos via Brooke's Facebook)

*This AFI song title totally fits this post, but apparently I had used it on a post two years back. Silly me.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Becca, you've got it going on

Dude. Becca has, once again, hit it out of the park with the S/S 13 Chromat collection. The past few weeks, I've been obsessed with finding bras I can actually wear for hours of non-stop Latin translating fun (i.e. wires and ill-fitting lingerie are not a Classicist's friend), and I think I'll have to include a(nother) Chromat swim top in my curation. As Catullus says, nec miser vive! I'm sure he'd also say 'get this bathingsuit' to Lesbia, however you would say that in Latin (my English-to-Latin is a bit rusty).

Wednesday, September 12, 2012


Oh goodness. It's more beautiful than I had imagined

Pictures, or it didn't happen*

I just decided, just now, that I prefer fashion editorials to videos. Yes, I've complained about editorials before, as I'd prefer to see every detail of a piece first and foremost to figure out how it would work for me, and then see how others see it. And yes, I've posted fashion videos before if I think they're cool or am a huge fan of the designer. Heck, I even look forward to seeing new videos when I know they're coming (such as Alexandra Groover's newest, premiering at London Fashion Week on Friday). But really, if I'm being honest, if I have to choose between an editorial and a video, I'd rather see an editorial with no music or story line or blatant subtext attached so that I can make up my own interpretation of what is going on. Maybe it's that anti-technology aspect of me rearing its head, but fashion is much more relatable if I'm allowed to relate to it on my own terms. Seems obvious, but whatever. The same goes for me and music too - I'd prefer not being told what obscure lyrics mean (insert shout out to Davey Havok here), and sometimes I even wish I had never seen a music video that creates a narrative or image that was never (in my mind, at least) inherent in the lyrics. 

Anyway, this came up because I came home to InAisce's S/S 13 editorial lookbook, and all I could think of was Latin poetry, both the reading and translating of. For instance, the first photo captures in an InAisce-framed way my secret Latin translating spot that I was babbling on about the other day, with me in black, looking through time to what Catullus (whom I'm translating) was saying. And in the second photo, the ghost-like figure in black represents, to me, Catullus (or any other dead poet/writer/artist, for that matter), looking on at what the world has become and what we've made of him, himself being unable to follow us and yet still being here. And in the third photo (below), the figure hidden on the cliff brings to mind my Sulpicia, the focal point of my Masters, waiting to pounce on me in retribution for my erasure of her existence (though, at the same time, her ghost-ness symbolizes her non-existence...). I'm sorry, Sulpicia, but someone's got to do it.


(Photos by Jeff P. Elstone II)

*Written while enjoying Theatre is Evil, Amanda Palmer's new album with The Grand Theft Orchestra (yes, that album); one of my favorite songs from it is called "Smile (Pictures or It Didn't Happen)".

Saturday, September 8, 2012

The Lady of Shalott

The last two (gorgeous!) afternoons, I've spent my post-class time translating Latin beside a babbling brook (i.e. a man-made pond with tiny waterfall), which I stumbled upon behind the building I now spend a third of my time in. If I wasn't already sold on being a grad student (which I was), I definitely am now. Can you believe I'm basically getting paid (by the government, no less) to have the kind of romantic afternoons before only read about in Anne of Green Gables (and/or Tennyson)? I've even been assigned an office and given a key, but, as long as it's nice enough to study outside, that office is going to be used as much as Roslyn's Cafe. 

Anyway, Gary Graham's S/S 13 collection perfectly complements my secret little translating spot (and has finally returned to the aesthetic I first loved him for). Prints and all, it also reminds me of some of my favorite layered outfits (and favorite wallpapers...). Thanks, Mr. Graham!

(Photos via

Friday, September 7, 2012

Printed matter

Though I used to regularly visit the Black Milk blog (called Too Many Tights!), I had forgotten all about the (i.e. THE) leggings label until Queen Michelle posted herself in a brand new pair. This promptly led to the most impulse-est of impulse buys, being my very first pair of Black Milk the New York City Skyline print. How could I not? Yes, they're super cheesy. But what thousands of Black Milk-owning girls know is that these babies they are also awesome in material, construction, and fit. I'm sure a second pair of Black Milks will enter my wardrobe at some point.

Anyway, since I don't wear leggings as pants (because they're not pants), I assumed that the cheese factor would be lowered by the fact that only a small portion of the calf would be bared to the world, and the buildings in the print would look more like abstract art. Which is exactly how they look, at least to the untrained eye. And I think I'd wear a lot more prints (more meaning some) if they were abstract, such as the two pieces from New York-based designer Kimberly Ovitz's S/S 13 collection pictured above. I don't know what they're of (if anything at all), but I don't need to either. The rest of the collection, though in good ol' fashioned solids, is quite lovely as well. However, as I have Latin to translate, I leave it up to you to verify that statement (go here).

Kimberly's name, by the way, might ring a bell to you since I mentioned it once but never posted anything proper. She is, unfortunately, one of the many designers that get lost in the black hole that is my bookmark folder. I swear I tried to organize them once, but to no avail. You should just bookmark her yourself to get up to speed. Particularly as I like her stuff more and more each season.

(Photos via

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Pei G Tsai

Today was my very first day of grad school, and though it wasn't as bad as I thought it would be, it definitely was a bizarre day. First of all, as I unfortunately did not take a modern language the first two times around, I am now stuck in a first-year undergrad course with people an entire decade younger than me. I can't even fathom what it's like to not have breathed 80s air, or to not remember a time before the Internets. And each and every one of these kids seem to have sprouted an extra appendage - do kids these days even know how to put their cellphone down? However, since I must choose only one, The 18-Year-Old of the Day Award goes to the guy who sat in front of me. Yes, young sir, it's a good thing you wore that tank top on a blustery day so we can all see your manly armpit hair and terrible tattoo or 'tat', as I'm sure you call it. And yes, we all recognize that you woke up an extra half an hour early to get your hair just so. Both of those things are very important to help you watch those .gifs on your laptop to the best of your ability when you're supposed to be learning Italian instead. You are, come si douchebag.

Anyway, the other notable portion of my day consisted of both me not throwing up before my Latin class with the most intimidating prof ever (in the very same room where I had a Latin class with him six whole years ago) AND him not recognizing me (as I am now blonde and bespectacled) but yet being able to give the entire class a synopsis of a paper I wrote for his class (...six years ago) after seeing my name on the attendance sheet. Oh boy. Anyway, his synopsis segways into the Pei G Tsai A/W 12/13 collection from London-based Taiwanese designer Peggy Pei-Chuan Tsai (found via NJAL). The reason being because, just as my Latin paper on Tacitus took someone else's idea and applied and revamped it to fit my topic, Peggy here has taken Julian Roberts' subtraction cutting method and experimented with it for her graduate collection (created from only four patterns in total). Three cheers for innovation!

(Photos via NJAL)

Tuesday, September 4, 2012


This photo is very comforting to me. I believe this is still a work in progress (based on the pins present in another photo, hidden here by the belt), but, even so, seeing new creations from Patricia Ayres makes me feel that all is right in the world. Makes sense that it's fall, both my favorite season of the year and the time when my ArtLab pieces get worn the most. September, welcome.

And since we're on the topic of photos, this may be the greatest photo ever (aside from the fact that it's an Instagram, if that's even the right way to say it): Sigur Rós playing at Castello Scaligero in Verona (via Sigur Rós' Facebook). I can even hear the music just by looking at it. Fantastic.

Monday, September 3, 2012

Atifa Rasooli

Part of the reason I'm so excited about going back to school is because I can finally wear whatever I want again, all day, every day. I'm simply not cut out for the office life in any way, shape, or form: I hate office politics, I can't play the mind games involved with being around a group of women 8 hours a day, I can't comprehend how meetings are useful in any respect, and I utterly loathe business wear. I tried (half-heartedly) to dress how I was supposed to, but I just couldn't do it. Why do horrible black polyester dress pants and ruffled blouses make me more professional than well-cut black jeans and a men's InAisce linen blazer? Answer: they don't. Anyway, I hope that a couple years from now, when I might have to step back into an office job, my town's business look has become a bit more European (or at least New York-an), and an outfit in the aesthetic-ballpark of Danish designer Atifa Rasooli's work (found via NJAL) is deemed acceptable officewear by the fashionable and unfashionable alike. Otherwise, I'm out of the game for good.