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Fine Jewelry by Monique Lhuillier

24 Oct

Monique Lhuillier is a designer I have always admired, especially since I saw a mini documentary about her on CNN. She stands out in her razor sharp focus on delivering luxe, ultra feminine, très très chic pieces. Her bridal line is beyond gorgeous, her clothing line delivers the goods excellently collection after collection. I’ve come to expect the highest in luxurious standards from her.

So imagine how excited I was when I discovered she has a wedding ring line in collaboration with Blue Nile, the largest online retailer of certified diamonds and fine jewellery.  I really like it when a designer segues into different aspects of fashion easily, especially when it’s done so well.

The collection is beyond stunning, it is breathtakingly beautiful. She did an engagement ring line and a wedding ring line. Each engagement ring is adorned with a blush pink sapphire “lovemark,” symbolizing a blushing bride. Beautiful.

I selected my best pieces of the collection, my absolute favourite has to be the Princess Double Halo. If you ask me, the prices are pretty reasonable for diamonds set in platinum.

To read more about the collection and see the pieces in detail, check out the Monique Lhullier page on Blue Nile

Monique Lhuillier Double Halo Engagement Ring_$3000
Double Halo Engagement Ring $3000
Monique Lhuillier Draping Halo Engagement Ring_$2750
Draping Halo Engagement Ring $2750
Monique Lhuillier Floral Halo Engagement Ring_$4550
Floral Halo Engagement Ring $4550
Monique Lhuillier Heirloom Diamond Engagement Ring_$3750
Heirloom Diamond Engagement Ring $3750
Monique Lhuillier Milgrain Halo Engagement Ring_$1900
Milgrain Halo Engagement Ring $1900
Monique Lhuillier Petite Draping Halo Engagement Ring_$1800
Petite Draping Halo Engagement Ring $1800
Monique Lhuillier Princess Double Halo Engagement Ring_$3200
Princess Double Halo Engagement Ring $3200
Monique Lhuillier Split Shank Halo Engagement Ring_$2655
Split Shank Halo Engagement Ring $2655
Monique Lhuillier Twist Shank Engagement Ring_$2300
Twist Shank Engagement Ring $2300
Monique Lhuillier Vintage Hexagon Engagement Ring_$2945
Vintage Hexagon Engagement Ring $2945

Images via Blue Nile

London Fashion Week [S/S ’13] – The Roundup

26 Sep

Paris Fashion Week is on as we speak, the final week of fashion month, featuring the crème de la crème of the global fashion industry. Watch this space for my favourite of the shows.

In the meantime, I’ve put together my round up of London Fashion Week. Overall, the shows didn’t get rave reviews but you know there will always be beautiful fashion in there somewhere. Roksanda Illincic stood out, it was an explosion of colour combinations and fabric combinations, and there were the designers from the Fashion Fringe competition. Dig in…

Roksanda Illincic

The collection combined so many stare worthy elements. The foundation was ultra feminine cuts and shapes, build on top of that unusual yet stunning color combos and gorgeous fabrics like silk and tweed and you have a delicious confection.

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Temperly London

The fifties silhouette will have my heart any day and I got a pleasant surprise from Temperly London. Perhaps we could have a micro trend for the season. The silk wide leg pants and sequin blouse look was absolutely stunning, I dream of myself in outfits like that.

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Fashion Fringe Designers – Haizhen Wang & Teija Eilola

The most unexpected place where I got my ultimate fashion high was at the ‘design feet’ of brand new freshers. Two of the three finalists of the Fashion Fringe competition (think London version of Project Runway) absolutely took my breath away.

Haizhen Wang

My first thought on seeing the pieces in this collection was Haider Ackermann! The deconstruction, generous layering/draping, rock solid structure and combination of contrasting fabrics (think leather and silk) was reminiscent of Ackermann. The designer, Haizhen Wang is an alum of Central St Martins and worked at MaxMara, Boudicca, and AllSaints; I definitely see AllSaints in there. He made an excellent showing of himself and I found he won the competition, too well deserved.

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Teija Eilola

Teija’s collection got me in the very detailed yet simple and fresh feel. I loved the balloon sleeves on the striped dress and crisp white blouse. All very wearable with a lot of interest.

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Photo credit: styledotcom

Milan Fashion Week – Dolce & Gabbana SS ’13

24 Sep

The plan had been to follow the fashion week happenings in a chronological order, my review of London Fashion Week was next but I saw this Dolce & Gabbana collection and I could NOT wait.

It grabbed my attention and what I find so so mesmerizing is the detail, the vibrant colours, the accessories, the way it all just comes alive. The collection was inspired by Sicily, where Domenico Dolce is from. I find the collection so fascinating, I can’t help myself. The detail, Oh the detail. Never mind that this is almost to be expected by the design duo, they do florals and detail so well.

Notice the rafia fabric and vibrant colours, the graphic images sketched on dresses and tops and skirts, lol. I love this collection and I could wear some of the pieces. Notice the stripes in this collection too, major trend for S/S ’13 for sure.

The bags were stunning as well, and we’d have to come up with a name for the earrings – Über statement earrings. It made for such great viewing, all 86 pieces in the collection. The art and creativity of it all is what really gets me excited, never mind if some of the pieces are actually not wearable, fashion is art.

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Photo credits: styledotcom

New York Fashion Week [S/S ’13] Part 3 – Stripes Society

19 Sep

You know a fashion trend is going to be massive when two major designers base their entire collection around it. So, all lovers of stripes, in every imaginable expression, here they are.

Marc Jacobs

I particularly like the long dresses and the embellished horizontal striped dress. I find it completely fascinating that the entire collection was made up of stripes, in so many different ways. I mean, how far can you stretch your imagination? Big pat on the back to Mr Marc.

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Tommy Hilfiger

And just when you thought you had seen it all, Tommy Hilfiger does it in a whole new way, blazers, leather dresses, the whole gamut – in stripes! Get ready to see in stripes come Spring 2013!

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Jenny Packham

If there was one trend I loved this season, it was the peplum. So it was great to see it still in the running for Spring 2013. Love what Jenny Packham did with it! I’ll take that polka dot dress any day.

 

 

 

Photo credit: Styledotcom

New York Fashion Week [Spring Summer 2013] Part 2

13 Sep

Today I’m focusing on a designer I absolutely love love love – Rachel Zoe.

There’s an elegant, grown up, classy lady feel to the entire collection. She did what she does so well, impeccable tailoring, easy laid back yet chic looks.

I’ve had a style crush on sequins for a while now, she did it so beautifully well, the off shoulder beautifully draped, floor length sequin dress is stunning.

I love this collection, it’s beautiful. I loved every single item sans plunging necklines of course, what would I give to popularize the more demure pieces.

Ok, look out for more great fashion in part 3!

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The lovely Rachel Zoe

 

Photo credits: styledotcom

New York Fashion Week [Spring Summer 2013] Part 1

12 Sep

It’s New York Fashion Week!!! Yeah, old news (for the fashion savvy) I know but exciting nonetheless. There’s no better time to rouse my sleeping blog, it’s fashion week once again, my favorite season too.

So I’ve been taking it all in, my instagram feed has been awash with images, live from the runways, as it happens. There have been tons of street style snaps and behind the scene footage, all the buzz!

We can already see some trends taking shape, the stripes (Marc Jacobs and Tommy Hilfiger went wild on stripes), the sheers (loads of sheer panelling, chiffon and tulle), the embellishments and the peplum trend which has been around for two seasons now – not that I mind, I love peplums! Loads of lace everywhere, I’m a sucker for lace, especially in the opulent rich texture as seen at Oscar de la Renta and Vera Wang. The color yellow seems to be showing up everywhere, color blocking is around yet again and the clashing of prints and patterns are clearly here to stay.

As it is with summer collections, I personally am loving all the bright fête of color going on, it just gives this joie de vivre vibe.

The season is looking so yummy already, and I have quite a few favorites. I will feature my favorites from a cross section of designers in a blog series starting with this one.

I shall start with the collections that had the jaw dropping effect on me.

Vera Wang

The textures, the colours – sparkling white, chartreuse, azure blue, amethyst, cypress green, gold-  the layers and layers of tulle, the decadent lace. This collection was so divine.

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Oscar de la Renta

If you’ve been on this blog more than once, you know I love Oscar. He just can’t go wrong. He delivers the ladylike just the way I love it, the use of colour and texture and cut is pristine, can’t be faulted. This time around, he delved into pant suits and skirts suits, we saw a blazer and we saw shorts. There was a diversification in terms of style but definitely not in terms of aesthetic, the collection still personified ‘The Lady’

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Alice + Olivia

There was something about this collection that just made me happy. It was airy and bright, young and free, eclectic and fun. The splashes of colour were vibrant and happy. The yellow sequinned dress was stunning, right up my alley. There was life -simply expressed – in the collection, I found that appealing.

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It has been a fun ride, great fashion and there’s still plenty more to come. See you in part 2!

Photo credits: styledotcom

Gracious Grecian Bride

25 Apr

I have a few friends who would swear by the unconventional wedding dress. You won’t catch them dead wearing a ball gown on their wedding day. Absolutely no  hope for the fussy stuff.

These days, I’m getting more attracted to the understatedly elegant, simply graceful yet abundantly feminine wedding dress. In a general fashion sense though, I love silk, in whatever form, if i had my way, i’ll be swathed in silks all day every day. Then, my best clothing detail in the world is draping, generous luxe draping. Combine both and it  makes sense then that I fell in love with this Amanda Wakeley collection at first sight.

Not for your conventional bride but it ticks all the boxes of chic.

It’ll cost you though. An Amanda Wakeley dress retails from £2,000. See more details here

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So what do you think? Will you go for the classic ball gown or you’re more along these non fussy lines?

 

Photo Credits: Amanda Wakeley

Art For Your Sole: Walter Steiger heels

10 Apr

Fashion for me equals creativity, art, self expression. The things that really catch my eye are the unusual, the different, the stand out pieces. It goes to show the mind of the designer or wearer, taste and a great eye is like pregnancy, can’t be hidden. It always peeks out, in the tiny little detail, in the choice of colour, in the decision to have a curved heel versus straight like everyone else.

Walter Steiger’s signature is the curved sole and stunning is what it is. The shoes are sold at flagship stores around the world.

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Check out the website www.waltersteiger.com

Time Magazine’s ALL Time Fashion Icons

4 Apr

TIME magazine just compiled a list of 100 fashion icons, featuring fashion inflencers and icons from as far back as Cristobal Balenciaga, Coco Chanel and Audrey Hepburn. Complete with short stories of influential designers, stylists, editors, photographers, models and muses, there are the familiar faces and the unfamiliar plus the (concisely written) stories behind them.

Of course you know Anna Wintour was on that list!

Very interesting read, seeing some of the stories cements my belief that fashion and the fashion industry is waaay beyond the wearing of clothes, it’s art, it’s creativity, it’s passion and expression. Totally inspiring and a must read for everyone with  more than a casual interest in the fashion industry. Trust me, there just might be some names you’ve not  met before.

You can find the story here

And style icon extraordinaire Grace Kelly

Photo credits: Time Magazine.com

Love. Want. Need.

10 Mar

Lanvin Swarovski Crystal and Cord Brass Chain Necklace.

Solid, beautiful and versatile; great wardrobe staple and would work with many looks. Particularly excellent for dressing a little black dress up.

Find it on net-a-porter for £730

Lanvin Swarovski crystal and cord chain necklace £730 pounds

Lanvin Swarovski crystal and cord chain necklace £730 pounds

Paris Fashion Week Fall 2012: Haider Ackermann!

6 Mar

There is a reason why this designer was named by Karl Lagerfeld as a possible successor for the haute couture powerhouse Chanel. Anyone who understands how to sculpt luxe fabrics around the body with such sartorial precision, with a consistently accurate play of colour, texture, tailoring, draping, layering and those waist cinching effects…words fail me.

Presenting my best picks from the Fall 2012 collection of one of my favourite ever designers..Haider Ackermann! *big grin*

p.s.

Look out for the Lanvin collection, it was pure gorgeousness.

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Photo credits: Elle.com

NY Fashion Week Fall 2012 – Hervé Léger by Max Azria

15 Feb

There’s too much fantastic fashion coming out of New York for Fall 2012, it’s an endless parade of art, creativity and great tailoring. I almost can’t keep up with them, 300 designers is a long list. Will see how much I can go through before London Fashion Week starts on Friday.

It impresses me immensely when a designer takes the usual and makes something completely different yet relevant with it. Hervé Léger has become synonymous with the bandage dress but with this collection, the style has been given a completely different spin. Lots of harnesses, the equestrian influence is clear, someone was definitely inspired by horses. Beyond that, lots of detailing, there were patterns on Hervé Léger! Ombre shades, there were longer lengths and some regal, graceful looks. Great direction for the label.

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Photo credits: elle.com

NY Fashion Week Fall 2012: Victoria Beckham

14 Feb

Victoria Beckham is on a roll, she’s just running, guns blazing, stamping her image on the fashion world and simply not letting up.

To coincide with Fall fashion week, she launched a new bag named after baby Harper. Different from the typical VB bag but a beautiful addition to the pack, she’s becoming pretty unpredictable and that’s a good thing.

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With the Fall 2012 collection, she takes me right back to the place where I first fell in love with the line. It screams sleek sophistication, elegance, feminine allure and has got so much gravitas, simply head turning, simply stunning. Military accents that seem to be trending already are present in the collection as well.

The surprise element has to be those tough looking boots, very edgy and a complete contrast from the heels we’ve come to expect. Interestingly, the look works perfectly well, if there’s anyone who can make boots look feminine and sophisticated, it’s Victoria Beckham. These here are my best looks from the collection.

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Photo credits: elle.com

NY Fashion Week Fall 2012: Rachel Zoe

13 Feb

New York Fashion Week hit the ground running and it’s been beautiful fashion all around, so far I can already see some trends. Military is for sure making a come back but it’s still too early to tell how major it’s going to be, pleats are showing up again and colour and prints are going nowhere.

I will be kicking off my reporting with my new designer bff Rachel Zoe *big grin*

There’s so much to love about RZ’s first runway show, so much to love. As always, the seventies influence shines through with the pussy bow blouses and sequinned dresses. More impressively, I love the disregard for the somber hues that characterize fall fashion, there was so much colour. The variety of fabrics, texture, patterns plus impeccable tailoring gave the collection that eclectic, passionate vibe that Rachel Zoe herself exudes. Love the richly draped silks, they caught my eye, nothing says luxe like silk.

I give this collection an A+, Rachel Zoe is soaring to the top.

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Lace found its way into the collection and completed it for me. Minus the faux fur – because I’m not particularly crazy about fur – this has to be my best look of all.

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Photo credits: elle.com

Spring 2012 Trend: The Peplum

9 Feb

I know I’m not the only one who feels this way, like the global fashion calendar is an ever spinning roller coaster ride. You never quite get off to catch your breath. Before the spring collections hit the stores, the pre-fall collections are out. Just two weeks ago, it was Spring 2012 haute couture week, before we get a chance to stare at and appreciate the craftsmanship of the stunning collections, we are being ushered hurriedly into Fall 2012 fashion week, kicking off in New York today.

New York Fashion week schedule

New York Fashion week schedule

In spite of this apparent madness – and I don’t want to imagine what the designers and their team of stylists, makeup artistes, art directors, publicists etc must feel – it still is a great rush when another fashion week is coming up. You can’t help but be curious about what the trends for the next season will be, where the designers will be drawing inspiration from, what to expect from your favourite designers and if some trends you love will be making a comeback. As a diehard fifties aficionado, I’m always on the lookout for a fifities comeback, that means I get to find those nipped in the waist, full skirted dresses in the shops.

So, I’m waiting with eager anticipation for the shows to start. In the meantime, I get to keep looking at and talking about some of my favourite trends from the season we’re in now.

Spring is the most relevant season for us in these parts because we can identify with the clothes and can wear them, unlike Fall where most of the clothes are made in fabrics and come in styles we can’t wear in the tropics. Some stunning trends came out of Spring 2012 and make for great fashion. Over the next couple of posts, I will do a spotlight on some of these trends, starting right now with The Peplum.

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I fell in love with the Peplum since my childhood days in the 80s, it was just so girly and I liked it. I never really did get a Peplum dress but how I longed for one. This right here is my chance to fulfil my childhood fantasies.

Now, you’ve never seen the peplum get as edgy, psychedelic and avant garde as it got in the Spring collections, and it showed up everywhere, from Celine to Jason Wu to Marchesa, all the way to Vera Wang. Some designers based their collection on this trend – Vera Wang and Givenchy had Peplums on at least half the clothes they showed – it was stunning what Givenchy did with the style.

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This trend is bang on for girls who want to emphasize the waist, give a chic twist to work wear or play up their feminine side with a girly, frothy peplum in lace or tulle.

However you like it, get inspired by a plethora of peplums in every conceivable style.

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Photo credits: Elle.com