Tag Archives: Fashion

Autumn/Winter 2014 Trends And Tribes

One of my personal favorite things is to see how each designer tells a story about their woman season after season. Where is she going? What is her mission? Will she be going to work in the city or lounging about in a coffee shop with friends? Is she a mother, a leader, an associate, an artist, an athlete, a minimalist, a romantic? Or is she all of the above? Designers empower women. For some obscure reason, every season we see similar ideas, trends, color schemes, and designs from the runways of New York, London, Milan and Paris. One might ask how does such a strange phenomenon happen every season? Do the designers secretly have a conference with one another and decide what will make them money with the coming season? With a dedicated amount of time and thought, I’ve compiled images (courtesy of style.com) that display the similar yet very different clans, trends, and designs of this coming season. Many houses catered to different types of customer all within one collection:  women who love glitter, women of the future, women of the past(mainly the 60’s and some from the Edwardian era), women who are rebels, women who portray themselves as an illusion of stripes, women who wear profuse amounts of blue and green, women who wish to remain cozy. This season, women were empowered as game changers in their environment by the designers.

Ladies Who Wear Illusions


Bottega Veneta by Thomas Maier


Acne Studios

alexander wang 2

Alexander Wang


Giorgio Armani


Balenciaga by Alexander Wang

bottega veneta

Bottega Veneta by Thomas Maier


Hussein Chalayan


Chanel by Karl Lagerfeld

christopher kane

Christopher Kane

creatures of the wind 2

Creatures of The Wind by Shane Gabier and Christopher Peters


Dries Van Noten

giambattista valli

Giambattista Valli



issey miyake

Issey Miyake


Kenzo by Carol Lim and Humberto Leon




Blumarine by Anna Molinari

proenza schouler

Proenza Schouler by Jack McCollough and Lazaro Hernandez

rick owens

Rick Owens

stella mccartney

Stella McCartney

thom browne

Thom Browne



Out of every trend this season, the use of line and illusion was the most used. I couldn’t stop smiling because with many designers, this was a reoccurring theme within the collection and I pose my previous stated question: how do the same trends and ideas pop up within many collections? Lines in a profound print, lines as a layered textile, pin stripes that are blurred and fade into a gradual gradients, herringbone print etched or quilted into the fabric, immense and bold graphics that evolve into a line, or simple lines that fall into an illusion, and more were imprinted into the minds of some of the most influential creatives. Do expect to see this trickle down into H&M, and Zara or Top Shop. With a trend that was spearheaded this big, the fast fashion businesses will take advantage of such a huge idea. I love that you get lost while looking into the lines and on some, your eyes begin to hurt. Simply brilliant!

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Grace Coddington’s 70th Birthday & Her Time At Vogue

  When people ask me who inspires me the most this present day, I tell them its Grace Coddington! And most of them don’t know who this marvelous woman is! There have only been two or so folks, that I know, who actually know and follow her work. She has been the creative director at American Vogue for 23 years! Anna Wintour and her have been  partners at Vogue for almost the same amount of time, because Wintour actually needed a diverse woman working at Vogue! She is the woman behind the scenes that makes a lot of the key items to getting the magazine out the door. People hardly knew who she was until R.J. Culter’s “The September Issue” came out.  With the April issue of Vogue featuring Rihanna on the cover, Wintour dedicated her editor’s letter to Coddington. And by the looks of these pictures, it seems as though she was thrown quite a smashing party.

Grace’s work at Vogue has and always will be astonishing to the public. Her photos always make the eyes dance across the glossy pages of each issue. Now, I only began following Vogue… three years ago. Credit goes to my godmother and godsister for introducing me to… well, fashion in general. Of course I knew what Vogue was… back then, I always saw it as another heavy magazine on the stands at the local grocery store. My godsister, Morrow, gave me the 2009 September issue when we were just chilling out in Starbucks one day. It was already the end of September The one with Charlize Theron on the cover? Yeh, I devoured that puppy within minutes and then looked through it a few more times. From all of the ads to the glorious editorials, I knew I had found something I could sink my teeth into. Out of all of the numerous spreads in that September issue… the one that caught me eye was Grace’s shoot on “Little Red Riding Hood”. Seeing the whole fantasy, the interpretation, the whimsy Natalia Vodianova prancing around in a red poncho & the 2009 must have over-the-knee boots. Asked Morrow who had the concept behind it all. And then I heard her name. Googled her work. FOUND EVERYTHING THE GENIUS HAS EVER MADE. Once the “September Issue” came out I got to see her in action, and you could say that film confirmed my dream of pursuing a career(preferably stylist or an editor) in the fashion industry. Since then I have been an arduous follower of her current and past work.

To honor Coddington’s seasoned years at Vogue… I present some of my favorite photographs that Grace Coddington has made. Each tell a story, showcasing not only the clothing but the model. Some of the more extreme editiorials portray fantasy at its best and most expensive form. It’s not all of her work, but these are the ones that stuck out to me the most. Enjoy!

OH, and Happy Birthday, Grace! May you have many more years to come at Vogue!

Image credit goes www.vogue.com

Thanks for reading and getting down this far! Comments are appreciated!  And this is more of her recnt-ish work, couple older ones here and there on this, but mainly within the range of the last 10 or so years.

Grace, if you do ever read this… know that you remind me to keep my eyes open during everyday life. I wish I could meet you someday. Thank you for being an inspiration. – Daniel Shapiro


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Vivienne Westwood, A Barmy Yet Marvelous Woman

How  can one describe her collections? Westwood is immensely iconic and known for her crazy style, ingenious color  blocking, and her unique art direction. I am beginning to notice that a lot of these British designers… are insane; which makes them all the more gifted. She really has a thing for punk and extreme couture fashion. I mean… this is the woman who designed shoes making Naomi Campbell stumble on the runway! You have to give her props to design such a daring shoe that would make a professional model trip… on the runway? Crazy things have happened before… wait forgive me; I am talking about the fashion industry. Crazy things happen all the time.

Back to our lovely ginger of a designer. Now for her A/W 2011 RTW collection, Westwood brought together an ensemble of darks and grotesque looking girls that flaunted down the gold splotched runway in some of the most tamed clothing she has ever designed. I am not saying they are the typical “casual friday” outfit, but it seems that a more tamed inspiration was going through her head this season. And I am not down sizing her as a designer because of the few somewhat casual/wearable pieces. A lot of the collection is not even close to casual…. just some of the pieces. Her past work has had pretty far-fetched items. Let’s just say this; you wouldn’t see average Jane walking down the street in these clothes. And average Jane would probably never wear designer clothing like this either so lets not worry about Jane.

 The models this season had these intensely grotesque but some what semi-attractive paint masks smudged across their faces. Westwood always creates an artistic bang with her makeup choices… I mean a year back she put French mustaches on her models for womens RTW Fall 2010.  Crazy,right? But in the most beautiful of ways type of crazy. As far as prints go, she deserves some immense credit for having obscure combinations like plaid with indian type crows, or huge polka-dots, floral mixed in with portraits of women, bling with more floral, or plaid with a rustic mute. That list goes on. I loved the fabric choices like a bit of organza, some chiffon, silk, tons of sequins, even a tad bit of velvet. Along with the color pallete; greens, reds, yellows, gold, silver, black, grey. There was a diverse load of shoes… plaid boots, sequined gold bling-y heels, sequined bling-y sneakers, floral gold boots. And on a few of the heels, there were a few high knee socks? What did I say? That trend is getting bigger and bigger every week. The tights were refreshing… no really, it was like perfectly ice-cold water was sliding down my throat when I saw em’. Tights varying from yellow, some what invisible fish nets, red floral. An array of baggy paints, loose knit sweaters, floral & plaid skirts, sequined tops & bottoms, peeping socks harmonized the style and execution. It was all very diverse and beautiful.  The collection told multiple stories from women of a different social milieu: I saw an environmentalist that had street-wear type shirt saying in bold lettering spelling “TREES SAVE LIVES.” I saw a few girls out for a night on the town with some intense sequins action going on. A student walking to her bus stop but still looking nice and sensable.  The fashionista who still wants comfort with what she wears. That girl who seeks attention from all of those around her so she throws on her craziest print with a random pair of knit socks and heels. A young girl who is willing to take a risk and wear a bubble dress with some silk pants. A smart bohemian chick that wants to flaunt her cleverness and style. An heiress wanting a red carpet affair.  Yes, yes, yes…. Westwood successfully found a way to connect with her customers on many different levels. Fall 2011 Vivienne Westwood was indeed so the most diverse collection London saw.  Keep on being the crazy ginger you are, Vivienne… because the fashion industry needs diverse folk like you.

Go ahead and take a gander.

Marvelous collection, and see the wedding gown above? She should do more…. least I want to see more. And this is somewhat creepy, but when the time comes I kind of want to name one of my kids after her. She’s that amazing. Thanks for reading through… and comments are appreciated!

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Viktor & Rolf, The Geometric Duo

Viktor Horsting & Rolf Snoeren are two Dutch designers that treat fashion like its life and death! They both own a line called… Viktor & Rolf; catchy, eh? The line is iconic and renowned for the vivacious haute couture style. The two are also known for their distinct geometric style of designing. Somewhat new to the whole industry they have already gone far with their work… and I have only been keeping an eye on them for a couple of seasons. With this season though… they told the story of a modern-day girl battling her way  in the Crusades. For their trademark idea of hard geometric ruffles, they put these stiff ruffles on girls shoulders, chests, arms, and some small ones on the shoes… kind of like fabric type paper. Red faces, fabric that looks like armor, and an implacable color palette of red, white, grey, and black; equates to a stunning medieval military unit that is ready to stomp a runway. The models looked ready to impale their enemies with those intense shoulder pieces. The red faces were also a perfect touch. Not the average makeup for a collection, and this is one of the reasons I enjoyed it. To me it symbolised the anger, pain, and strife a person can go through when in battle. This Fall looks prominent and pretty far spread out for styles and looks within the industry. These two really upped their game from what everyone else is doing…. and brought something entirely different to fashion’s large table. Take a look for yourself, folks. For Fall 2011… they definitely had an immense success. So far this is my favorite line for Autumn/Winter 2011.

Yeh, it is far fetched, but it is art. A beautiful collection!

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2011 Fashion; Looking Back & Ahead

Look at me, I am already celebrating 2011 and we are only 2 months into the year. Back in Fall 2010 everyone was anticipating what the next rising trends of 2011 will be. Well, well, well… come in closer m’ friends and let me show you what has been staring at your faces the entire time. What style? Vintage and resort gone retro. What year? 40’s/60’s/70’s… mainly 70’s though. What’s hot? Stripes, polka-dots, leather, intense prints, sparkly bling and of course fur. What colors? Bright bright ecstatic colors… oh and white. What origins? Bohemian, Mid-west, Victorian, Japanese, and surprisingly some American influence (I just find this one odd, because we are the ones that usually take inspiration from every other culture of the world). Now, you are asking how on earth did all of these things happen? It’s all to chaotic and all to weird, and no one would ever wear that… yaduh yaduh yaduh. It just might be too much… for some people. But, in all honest truth; the designers have indeed so been successful. All of them stuck to their aesthetic! They all know their customers inside and out. And it has been a beautiful 2011 with fashion, indeed. Even many of the spring trends really sneaked on over to the Autumn season this year. Here is to looking at you, 2011 Fashion. Take a look at my proof folks, because I am not crazy for seeing these repeated trends!

Ahhh, Alberta Ferretti has this way of bringing something new to the table every season, and with Fall 2011 she went against the 70's bandwagon and did the 60's from her beautiful perspective! Beautiful bright and bling prints!


Gurung just kicked off his career... and whew the man is taking himself to great heights. He is one of the many good examples of fur and bright colors this Fall


Feathers, paint, and some drapery? Alexander Wang brought forth his resort wear aesthetic for Spring 2011. Quite the success and some big hits off of the hair style...


Victorian blouse clashed with a Mid-West belt and jacket? What a stunning mesh of origins, Ralph Lauren, STUNNING!


Marc Jacobs took the liberty to clash polka-dots with bling. He is quite the charcter and is one of my favorites....


Diane Von Furstenberg and her newest partner in crime Yvan Mispelaere created a collection focused on the American woman and flaunting elegance....


Does Galliano ever fail? NO. Dior this season really went for bright boho classic Hollywood... and it made a stunning impact alright.


I couldn't leave out the British color blocking genius... Vivienne Westwood? Now look at the makeup, look at the bling-y fabric on both shirt and pants. Then take a look at the tye-dye purse. Tacky fashion? Maybe, but it's Westwood I am talking about here... she is a genius.


Frida Giannini really took to the 70's/40's/20's this season. She had the moxy to put out some floral shoulder pieces on the models for fall, and they look lovely! She also had fur with every silhouette in absolutely stunning colors. Gucci is the perfect example for the 2011 trend! Not just stunning, but breathtaking.

 And so here comes another end to another post. See all of the beautiful and repeating motifs of this season? Stunning. Beautiful. It truly is art. If you didn’t take a look at all of the highlight parts up at the top paragraph this might look like I am rambling on. The people placed above me are some of the greatest artists to walk this universe. They have been rightfully gifted… well I hope you enjoyed this, whoever you spammers are.

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Rodarte, A Rising Empire with Fall 11′

I know, I wrote a Rodarte post back in December. But I am jumping on the Mulleavy’s collection this season before anyone else does! The two sisters never cease to amaze me…. every season. Showing at New York Fashion Week, for Fall 2011…. they made a folk prairie girl gone retro. The most different runway show for Fall 11′!  They were clearly inspired by the Golden Hour and Mid-West America with cornfield fabric,  a Dorthy Wizard of Oz-ish ruby-red dress, aprons and pinafores with patches, corn/wheat field fabrics, floral lace tops, knit sweaters, elongated pioneer gowns, I mean the list goes on for the implacable collection! They also used storm theory within the fabric!!! Mid-West indeed!  All together, symbolic…. and the makeup? The faces were like a setting sun! Very gradient… very sky-like. And the hair… much like a messy girl living on the farm, but she is trying to look beautiful at the same time? Stunning. All together stunning. And I’d say honorable mention for going for the non-obvious this Fall. Fashion is looking at Rodarte with an even larger grin this season. 

You might be asking “A Mid-West inspired collection…? You off your high horse, Dan? This sounds corny…” No pun intended, thank you very much. But that is what any person would think… right? Right? Of course right. But no, no, no! I found the two sisters back in fall 09’…. and a couple of years later I have seen them expand into something even greater than just a couple of hippie designing sisters. They are starting an empire… and the Mulleavy kingdom gets bigger and better every season. And they never forget to emphasize the heels on the models. I mean… for Spring 2011 they added white/blue floral prints on the sandal/boot/heels, and such. Back in Fall 09′ they had over the knee duct-tape boots. For Spring ’10 they had eccentric leather stilettos. Now they add an entire folk-y geometric print on their boots on a few of the girls. Also having a simple black heel, with the sock peeping out on the Pioneer gowns; beautiful. They always deliver. Always. Kate and Laura Mulleavy… I give 5/5 stars for Rodarte, Fall 2011!


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Alexander McQueen Remembered: An Ode and Memoriam for the Artist

Sarah Burton has indeed so kept McQueen's idea of avant-garde in mind...

On this day exactly one year ago… Lee Alexander McQueen killed himself. Found dead in his apartment… hung by what actually was his favorite belt. He was depressed and people suspect it was possibly due to his mother’s recent death and the fact that he was on drugs.  The fashion industry mourned for the loss of a genius. Countless magazines have done multiple spreads and editorials with his more recent clothing  ever since he died, it really has been a “field day” of a year due to his death. Alas, Sarah Burton (McQueen’s assistant) took over the label after his death. She truly sticks by to what his aesthetic represented with her first collection for Spring 2011. People were doubtful of the dedicated assistant  but, she did not fail! It was obvious that Burton had her mentor in mind when designing. Taking inspiration from the environment like monarch butterflies, snake scales, intense flowers and clashing all of these things into a couture-esque medieval array of clothing… she birthed a successful masterpiece. I think McQueen is looking down on Burton as she is taking over his label… and I have a feeling he is proud of her.

Notorious, theatric rebel... Lee Alexander McQueen

Back to the main man. Lee Alexander McQueen was always an addict for haute couture, I mean come on… he was the chief of Givenchy for a while. And he was actually a rebel while working for the infamous French couture house. He labored over his work for a good period of his life. Some of his early work was considered awful, he really did have to work his way to the top with many against him. A lot of controversy came out of his work truth be told. Known for unconventional runway shows and too extreme clothing. He had myriads of people on his back. Not every artist makes his way to the top so easy, you know? But in all honest truth… I look back on these so-called odd runway shows and I see stunning and inspirational surrealism. He had a diverse theme and always put something different on the table  every season. Was it too over the top for him to do these things? Yeh, but… isn’t that what makes any artist? Seems like all the great ones are surrounded by loads of controversy. Anyway, it took everyone a while to warm up to McQueen. Looking back at all of his collections… you never know if they were really tamed or not. I think some his most memorable moments in fashion are:


1) Fall 09′, his intense couture show with all of the intense black/red/white gowns and all of the large puffy voluptuous red lips. And  his army of hardcore models stomping around the elegant pile of trash. This is one for the books, no doubt.


2) Fashion Chess Spring 2005 for his ready to wear collection. I mentioned it earlier. But no one else in the world would have thought of REAL-HUMAN-FASHION-CHESS! He organized the models based on diverse loads of skin color, hair color, and the color of their outfit. Then at the last moment… you realized that he set them up into a chess board. Genius. The crowns on the two queens are a perfect touch as well.


3) For Autumn 2006… the Widows of Culloden. A life-size Kate Moss ( who was stunningly draped/dressed in yards and yards of fabric…) hologram appeared and danced and people were shocked and amazed. And the entire collection. Truly inspiring and it had this literate sense to it. Beautiful.


4) Spring 2007, McQueen was inspired by the classical and 18/19th century elegance. The man got a whole orchestra playing in the middle of the runway. This dress is renowned for its floral likeness. And the orchestra played Saranbande by Handel, his favorite song!

5) Back in 1999… McQueen held a special collaboration of technology and fashion. He spray painted a model with robots in a trapeze dress while having her spin on a floor wheel. McQueen actually hired a  model/athlete named Aimee Mullins, who actually walked on his runway with wooden prosthetic legs…. McQueen made those “wooden boots”… and no one knew that they were fake legs! She has come a long way with those legs… but that is for another time.


6) Nicknamed the “Asylum Collection” for Spring 2001… he captured the essences and motifs of a lunatic. Stunning shoulder pieces if I might add….


7) Ballroom stumbling and catching within a dance floor orgy for Spring 2004. Whew. Probably one of his more theatric/explicit shows!


8 ) Back in 97′ he was inspired by geometric/creepy dolls with curving and sparkling headpieces. He made them stomp through water, which  wasn’t as popular back then. BUT he did with it good finesse.


9) McQueen took to doing a skating show. Ice skating that is, and very winter inspired. I am thinking he might of have a hard time finding models that could skate decently… oh and this was for Winter (no duh) 1999.


10) His last runway show before his death. Now Lady Gaga was actually featured in one of these outfits and he used her as one of his many muses. This show really reminded me of aliens… strangers with snake scales and intense heels gracing down the runway. AND, this was another one of his collaboration shows with a twist in technology. He filmed it with robotic cameras that followed the models as they walked down the runway.

These are not at all in favorite order. I enjoy all of them. And he has many more fashion shows that were extraordinary… these ones just stuck out to me. He was a genius to be reckoned with. Now… I know I could have given a brief history on him… but you can easily do that yourself. I wanted to bring together some of the moments that defined Lee Alexander McQueen as a fashion designer. He was daring. He had moxy. He took risks like no one else. He had an eye like none other. He is remembered through people like Sarah Burton, Vogue, Elle, the entire fashion industry. He inspired me. Having to work his way to the top… and getting crud from many people on his way there. He is remembered. R.I.P Lee McQueen. Rest in peace…. and long live McQueen.


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