31 March 2010

YSL Opium Bottle

Which do you prefer, the classic YSL Opium bottle (below, with the red 'lacquer' and black tassel)or the just-launched bottle (above: obviously a 'lite' version)?
This iconic perfume was launched in 1977.

30 March 2010

The Gentlewoman

It's out! I paged through The Gentlewoman at Kinokuniya yesterday and it was easily the most exciting magazine on the shelves, but that's not saying much. I didn't buy it.
Jop van Bennekom and Gert Jonkers, the innovative talents behind the fantastic Fantastic Man (launched in 2005) are also the publishers behind The Gentlewoman, which is edited by Penny Martin. Ms Martin, 37, has edited Nick Knight's Showstudio website for seven years, and she's a professor of Fashion Imagery at the London College of Fashion.
Although the thing looks fresh, organised and logical, it's nothing really exceptional or new. There's quite a lot of stuff to plow through, and there's something for everyone, but it did feel, in the 10 minutes I gave it, like I was clicking through the internet. I was also disturbed by the cover-to-cover Céline ubiquity. The cover is Phoebe Philo sporting a Céline scarve, logo legible (by David Sims and Camilla Nickerson). Ms Philo and Céline products subsequently appear on more than 30 pages, including the cover story, fashion and product spreads. The Céline ads, on pages 10 and 11 look like part of the book: Still such 'support' seems unprecedcented and excessive?
I'll rather spend my money on Butt Magazine, to be honest.

He Said She Said

"A man should look as if he had bought his clothes with intelligence, put them on with care, and then forgotten all about them."-Sir Hardy Amies (1909 - 2003)

29 March 2010

Kate as Nymph

Kate wearing Dolce & Gabbana. Kate is reportedly set to make her stage debut in The Tempest. She is reported to have landed a minor role as a nymph in an upcoming version of Shakespeare's play, part of the 2010 Bridge Project at London's Old Vic.

28 March 2010

He Said She Said

"Cleanliness is the luxury of the poor: be dirty!" - Francis Picabia (1879-1953) His painting, Cinq Femmes, 1943.

Monday Madness: Serge Lutens

Serge Lutens (born 14 March 1942) is a French perfumeur, photographer, filmmaker, hair stylist, perfume art-director and fashion designer. In 1967 Dior commissioned Lutens to create a makeup line.
In 1980, Shiseido hired Mr Lutens to develope their product image. Throughout the 1980s he shot various advertising campaigns and films for this beauty brand and designed makeup lines and packaging. These works won him two Lions d’Or at the International Advertising Film Festival. In 1982, Shiseido commissioned Lutens to create a fragrance called Nombre Noir. In the early 1990s Lutens opened the Les Salons du Palais Royal, a house of perfume in Paris. The rest is at the beauty counters. I heart Serge Lutens and he makes some of my favourite perfumes.

27 March 2010

26 March 2010

Weekend Reading List

It's great to read online that Stefano Tonchi, of New York Times's T Magazine (which I love) has signed on as the editor in chief of W. Mr Tonchi professed his love for print magazines, but will focus on the web and building the brand's presence online. But his first focus is on W's stories. I've long ROFL at W's horrible editor-free writing and the shocking tabloid-worthy puns, and of course, those tiresome bloated spreads and visuals. I've long since given W up as a lost cause, one amongst many magazines, I might add. It's nice that Mr Tonchi's input will be seen as early as the July issue, and I can't wait to see his full revamp in September. I can only wish that the powers that be at a few of our local magazines would make the same chop and change, rather than let their titles deteriorate unstoppably. Can they not see how bad things really are? Is there no judgement? There's certainly no paucity of talent in Singapore.
To prep for next weekend's theatre date with Jac, I'm going to speed-read through Shakspeare's The Tempest. I studied it ages ago and discussing it over the phone with Jac recently, and realised I've forgotten a lot of it. Talking to Jac about books is always illuminating, and I enjoy these conversations very much - she feels literature so keenly, as do I. Over at G's last night, she urged me to read The Velveteen Rabbit (1992) written by Margery Williams and beautifully illustrated by William Nicholson, the story of a stuffed rabbit and his quest to become real. G generously pressed the book on me, despite it being of some sentimental value to her, having been given to her on her birthday by her friend Timothy Nga, the actor.
It's appropriate for Easter, don't you think?
I was too sleepy at that point in the night to ask her just what the relationship was, just managing to stagger downstairs, wade through the louche Orchard Towers crowd (it was just the beginning of the work day for the denizens of this building), and get into the cab. It was a looong night.

24 March 2010

He Said She Said

"If it's not one of the finest quality, have a minimum of three, and then they appear to be a collection." - Giorgio Sant'Angelo (1939-1989)

22 March 2010

Oh Deer!

Audrey Hepburn and her pet deer... Frida Kahlo and her pet deer...
Why don't you have... a pet deer?

21 March 2010

Carine Bonanza

Are you panting yet? The 252-page Vogue Paris April 2010 looks so promising!
The cover is of Natasha Poly, shot by Vinoodh Matadin and Inez Van Lamsweerde. The Western theme and navy masthead promises... denim, I guess. Inside:
  • "Les Soeurs Jac & Lily" - The Donaldson sisters by Steven Klein.
  • "Tsarine Daria" - Daria Werbowy by David Sims.
  • "Princesse Natalia" - Natalia Vodianova by Marcus Piggott and Mert Alas

  • "Fleurs De l'Age" - Raquel Zimmermann by Mario Sorrenti

  • "Comtesse Natasha." Natasha Poly,by Vinoodh Matadin and Inez Van Lamsweerde

  • "Une Fille Un Style" is Catherine Baba
  • Alexander McQueen tribute

Similarly (or do I mean 'consistently'?), the summer Vogue Hommes International features a 'Americana' theme. Kate's cover is by Mario Sorrenti, styled by Emmanuelle Alt. The editorials include:
  • "L'Étoffe des Héros" by Beat Bolliger/David Sims

  • "Basquiat" by Anastasia Barbieri/Cedric Buchet

  • "Elvis" by Emmanuelle Alt/David Sims,

  • "Nouriev" by Carine Roitfeld/Patrick Demarchelier

(I'm quite certain that this shoot is based on the ballet legend Nureyev, after he defected to New York, probably set in the 1970s - 1980s? It's been done before, of course, but I can't wait to see this nevertheless because it's totally Carine's period!)

Monday With Monet

Still Life with Meat, Claude Monet, 1862

20 March 2010

Sunday Self Pic

Self portrait, Sir Nathaniel Bacon, 1625
Did you know that Piccadilly was named after a family who earned their fortune making piccadills, stiff collars with scalloped edges bordered with lace or perforations, during the 16th century?
Now you do.

Peter Lindbergh Back At Vogue

“Fashion photography has gotten a little lost. There is a lot of carnival going on. The hair has gotten too crazy and the make-up. At the moment, everybody is trying to do young. They have to look young or dress young. Youth is so overdone. All the advertising and magazine covers today — they don’t look like natural women. For me, that’s a real pity. There’s all this retouching. A little humanity would do good, especially in fashion photography.” - Peter LindberghPeter Lindbergh hasn't shot for Vogue for eighteen years. He went from working with Vogue to Harper's Bazaar in 1992, lured by Liz Tilberis to work on the revamp of Bazaar. Mr Lindbergh plans to begin work again with Vogue, as well as other Conde Nast publications in the US, after a recent meeting with Anna Wintour and Grace Coddington. “They asked. It was like you are the black sheep in the family, and your older brother asks you to come home,” he said.

19 March 2010

Weekend Reading List

Because I enjoyed Muriel Barbery's The Elegance of the Hedgehog so much I went in search of her first novel, Gourmet Rhapsody (translated into English in 2009, from French) all over town. I've not been so passionate about an authour for ages. I finally found the book at BooksActually, the definition of "quaint little bookstore"; Its location is at 5 Ann Siang Hill. I've never been to this five year-old book store although many friends have told me that I'd love it. They were so right. I was lost in there for an hour or so. And I'll be back. BooksActually also produce their own line of stationery (under their imprint Birds & Co) and stock vintage gift items so it's a great place to buy a gift for a special fussy someone.
Back to the book. It's not brilliant, so not to bother.
Ms Barbery, 40, now lives in Japan, where she is working on her third novel.


Isn't this something?
BookBook is a one-of-a-kind, hardback leather case designed for a MacBook two colours: black or red). BookBook' hardcover and rigid spine provide protection and the vintage book design is so cute! Hand-crafted and distressed, no two are alike. The zippers' leather pulls look like bookmarks... You can order it here:

He Said She Said

"The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. If you try it, you will be lonely often, and sometimes frightened. But no price is too high to pay for the privilege of owning yourself." - Friedrich Nietzsche
Drawing: Hans Olde

Linda, 1992

One of my all-time fave images of Linda by Steven Meisel (Vogue, Oct 1992). It's so stripped down and that hair! I remember trying to do this hair back in school... The look stands the test of time doesn't it? Even those Versace clogs look today. HEART.

18 March 2010

Model Grace

Grace Coddington as a model... It's nice isn't it to see that youth isn't all it's cracked up to be (at least not all the time!). I think Ms Coddington actually looks better now, than then. She really has aged gracefully.

17 March 2010

Richest Men

Forbes's annual list of the world’s richest people in the world ranked LVMH ceo Bernard Arnault #7, with an estimated net worth of $27.5 billion.
François Pinault, Arnault’s arch rival, and ceo of PPR–which owns brands like Balenciaga and Gucci was ranked #77, with an estimated net worth of $8.7 million.

They Forgot Toothpaste

"Change is in the air for Detroit city workers. Officials plan to place warning placards in three city buildings. The signs will warn workers to avoid 'wearing scented products, including ... colognes, aftershave lotions, perfumes, deodorants, body/face lotions ... (and) the use of scented candles, perfume samples from magazines, spray or solid air fresheners' . . .
The Detroit News reports the move stems from a $100,000 settlement in a federal lawsuit filed in 2008 by a city employee who said a colleague's perfume made it challenging for her to do her job." Have you heard of anything more illogical?
(Source: LA Times)

Fall 2010: Three English Women

Three English designers, all women, and all who first made their mark designing for Chloé, showed collections with a similar 'modern' vibe, but with varying degrees of success.
At Céline, Phoebe Philo described her look as “sharp, strict, reduced” which translated into workable separates which tried to harness the DNA of Celine — a bourgeois Parisian label that peaked in the 1970s. It was largely unremarkable, and underwhelming, even though the critics-who-don't-see have given it slobbering reviews, tails wagging. It seemed to me a watered-down follow-up from her wildly successful Spring show. In much the same key, Stella McCartney sent out graphic coats with notches and slits and sweaters and slacks quite plain and very clean, for her eponymous line. It has a 1960s vibe to it and is one of her better efforts. It's neat, humourous and stylish, though the cocktail numbers with satin mermaid trains looked suspect.I liked Hannah MacGibbon’s collection for Chloé most of all. I felt that it came closest to defining this season’s sensibility in a convincing style. Ms MacGibbon borrowed utilitarian masculine tailoring: The camel coat, the tan blouson, the butterscotch leather jacket, the herringbone tweeds and Prince of Wales checks, were taken from a British gent’s closet. The breezy wearability, however, was given her edge. She took that from the golden era of American sportswear (the 1970s), the days of early Ralph Lauren and Calvin Klein — when racing to work while looking wholesomely sexy defined American glamour. Vogue used to call this look 'racy'. This collection wonderfully austere in another way: At just over 30 looks, this was one tightly edited collection, and I liked almost every look.

16 March 2010

More Marlon Teixeira

Did you know that L'Officiel Hommes has an Italian edition? I didn't. Is it necessary? I'll leave you to ponder...

Marlon Teixeira, photographed by Milan Vukmirovic, of course.