Thursday, December 30, 2010

nodding dogs and valium

My tippity top New Year's resolution is to kick this blog back into high gear. More photos, a few interviews here and there, more absurdly long treatises (mostly on menswear, funnily enough). But it wouldn't have been right not to post something today, as I'd be doing a disservice to the man who gave this blog a name.

Rowland S. Howard: jerking guitar genius, misanthropic poet (in his own words, "I've got no companions, only Céline's on my side"), sadly dismissed as merely a right-hand man to those more famous.

He was a bitter, cruelly romantic, otherworldly genius on his own merit. Rowland S. Howard will be missed.
24 October 1959 – 30 December 2009

Monday, November 15, 2010

i must above all things love myself

Apologies for the lack of updates. There have been editorials I've wanted to post (Vogue Turkey, for the record, is REALLY rocking my shit), but, more to the point, some great news...

You'll shortly be seeing my writing on Prefix Mag too! I'm so excited to get back into music writing proper; as much as I adore fashion, I miss the music industry dearly. I miss knowing things (beyond my rather sudden addiction to The X Factor this season. Incidentally, how in the hell could they have booted Aiden? He was adorable and hopelessly awkward), and it just so happens that things are pretty darn good lately.

And in my new journey through the music blogosphere--yes, I did indeed just realize it's 2010 and has been that way for 11 months--the sudden success of Oberlin/WOBC peers Teengirl Fantasy confounds me. In a good way. You always hear about Oberlin's music scene and the bands it's spawned: Yeah Yeah Yeahs in a sense, Deerhoof, Tortoise, Liz Phair, etc. But you never quite think that the kids you see in a basement will go on to internet renown so quickly, nor do you expect to open your copy of Dazed & Confused and find them. 7AM is a really good album, although it's more evocative of 3 AM early morning/late night bad party decisions. Hazy, slowed-down house--is this considered chillwave? I damn well hope not--this song features Shannon Fuchness from Light Asylum (another great band) and is as psychedelic as the screengrab suggests. It could be that I've gotten back into early 90's acid house in a big way lately.

Basically, I like this decade. Finally. And what better way to celebrate my delayed 21st century arrival than with a man who's been kicking it since the 1970s?

nick cave, consummate badass motherfucker

Last night was Grinderman at Nokia--er, Best Buy--Theater, and what a show it was! Despite its really awful location in the heart of Times Square, it was a killer venue for the gig; not that it would have mattered, as Mr. Cave could command the attention of any and all concertgoers anywhere. A lot of friends skipped out on this one because they were underwhelmed by Grinderman's second album, and I don't blame them--many of the songs ran together, and the first half of the set was really just a cacophony of indiscernible blues. I was glad that the encore kicked off with the comparatively easier "Palace of Montezuma" to break up the loud monotony.

Again, is this really a bad thing? Not when it's Nick Cave, motherfucker. The man moves like a beast half his age, and the sweaty, sunken chest that peeked out from his unbuttoned shirt still has the power to make me swoon. Rock's greatest murderous, wayward-believer-preacher showman.

I'm also now the proud owner of a Grinderman mug.

Sunday, October 31, 2010

vamping it up

This is what I look like with hair!

It's been fun having a bob, actually. It just surprised me how few people recognized me, considering the makeup is more or less the same I do every day, perhaps a little heavier on the eyes.

Tonight, time for THIS IS NOT A COSTUME PART 2.

But hey, if the shoe fits.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

stephen fry on straight cruising and slut-shaming

Breaking from fashion and goth music to address something that really, really pisses me off.

I'm a huge fan of Stephen Fry. He's absurdly intelligent and I probably quote...bits...from A Bit of Fry and Laurie every day. So seeing this interview with Stephen was quite disheartening, to say the least.

I think most straight men feel they disgust women. They find it difficult to believe that women are as interested in sex as they are. For good reason. If women liked sex as much as men there would be straight cruising areas in the way there are gay cruising areas. I feel sorry for straight men. The only reason women will have sex with them is that sex is the price they are willing to pay for a relationship with a man, which is what they want. They want a boyfriend and then they want commitment.

Of course a lot of women will deny this and say, ‘Oh, no, but I love sex, I love it!’ But do they go around having it the way that gay men do?

This, very unfortunately, is not an isolated incident. He's made quite a few questionable comments before; many accused him of transphobia when, during the "Girls and Boys" episode of QI, he referred to trans women as "ladyboys." Which is indeed fucked up and COMPLETELY disrespectful--great way to delegitimize someone's gender identity. I haven't seen the episode, but I believe this was also the one that tried to justify why QI rarely has female panelists: "women don't think women are funny." I'm glad I haven't seen it (or any of the G series) because it sounds like a fuckload of misogynist, transphobic pseudo-science.

So back to the quote above. Aside from the fact that I don't want Stephen Fry telling me what I apparently think--and also, apparently in his world there are only gay men and straights, lesbians are too busy wearing combat boots or something--the notion that there should be "straight cruising" areas is ridiculous, bottom line. For one, there's a whole lot of slut-shaming going on that makes being a proud, sexual female a difficult thing to claim in public. For two, many straight men already seem to regard all public domain as a "straight cruising" area. It's not like going to a designated ~*seedy park*~ looking for a one-night stand; there's very little way to avoid it, and even the sidewalk becomes a place to try and pick up a woman. I can't wait for a bus in suburban Long Island, wearing generally ~*man repellent clothing*~ (TANGENT TIME the notion of personal style as a way to above all attract male attention is fucked up, but, y'know), without having at least three people in their cars hoot and holler at me. This too can quickly slide into dangerous territory about class, race, and socially mandated attitudes about how to approach women, although it's a good long discussion to have and, for the most part, it's not relevant to what the white, privileged Stephen Fry has to say here.

I'm not reinventing the wheel with what I have to say (and actually, my superstar friend Meg has an awesome post on similar things). But here's a disturbing anecdote: last night, after leaving the Ford Models party with Maheen (which was pretty much a sweaty, open arena for sexual harassment anyway), I get on the train to go home, leaving my wig and makeup on because I wanted to show people how awesome and unrecognizable I looked in said wig. Giving the train conductor my ticket, he looks me up and down and says, "Girl, I wish I could take your picture." Despite getting no response, when he comes to take my ticket the second time around, he persists. "Looks like you had fun tonight." He's more or less leering at me and I have to leave the train car to avoid him the rest of the ride. I'm guessing he simply assumed I was a drunken slut because I was one of few people in costume--because a reconstruction 20's dress screams I'M LOOKING FOR SOME, BOYS--but either way, not what one expects on the LIRR.

Getting dressed shouldn't be a fear. If I know I have to be somewhere late at night, I shouldn't want to make myself invisible by taking along the schlubbiest clothing I own. Unlike gay cruising areas in parks or whatnot, the sidewalk, the LIRR train, the pharmacy is not a fixed social space. While I can hold my own when catcalled, I don't want to mentally prepare myself for it any time I know I'll be in a crowded area. I don't want to keep my middle finger at full mast, because when I walk down the street or get chips from the deli, I'm not looking for sex or sexual conversation.

I'm not the most overtly sexual person. I like it fine and I'll get it when I want it, but when I was at Oberlin, I wasn't really keen on college hookup culture. There's a long list of reasons why I don't go for casual sex, but most are irrelevant. I may not be particularly promiscuous, but that doesn't mean other women are like me. We love sex, but we don't go on blathering about it or seeking it out publicly because we get vilified for it. After all, every bimbo in a miniskirt in heels is ASKING for it, isn't she? Stephen more or less says it in this interview:

"[Women don't] hang around in parks waiting for casual encounters with men. They just don't. The only ones who do it properly, they do it for money. Which proves another point--they have to be paid to do it!"

So every sexually active woman is a prostitute, and those who aren't only put up with sex out of desperation for a long-term relationship. What Stephen sees as sex aversion isn't a reflection of desire, but of the disparity of consequences between men and women. Social stigmatization, shame, a higher likelihood of violence, unwanted pregnancy, a world that already polices female sexuality and a woman's right to choose...

And here's an excerpt from his novel The Hippopotamus, the protagonist of which seems to be a far cruder version of Stephen:

Do gay men tarting themselves up for a night in a club whine about the vile sexism which insists they must be made attractive in order to be inspected like cattle? Do they hell.

Sometimes, in my dreams, I imagine a world in which women enjoy sex: a world of heterosexual cruising areas in parks and promenades, heterosexual bars, heterosexual back rooms, heterosexual cinemas, heterosexual quarters of the town where women roam, searching for chance erotic encounters with men. Such an image is only conceivable in one's fantasising bedroom, jerked into life by an angry fist and a few spastic grunts. If women needed sex as much as men did then - duck, Ted, duck, run for cover - then there wouldn't be so many rapists around the place.

The fact that such a misogynist message is being spread by a "NATIONAL FUCKING TREASURE" makes it even worse. Many people around the internets are thankfully outraged, but just as many are justifying it because "you guys, he's soooooo cool! He's so smart and funny and I will luff him forever."

No. Fuck that. I can't quite articulate all I want to say right now, but...Stephen, however clever a comedian you may be, you are hopelessly, ignorantly naive about gender, sexual chemistry (in the scientific sense), and societal standards for women. So piss off.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

the witching hour

al jourgensen threatens to shut down this blog in three, two...

Perhaps it's because I just got run down by a bunch of zombies outside Penn Station (excellent marketing on AMC's part; also, the trailer for The Walking Dead features the Walker Brothers classic The Sun Ain't Gonna Shine Anymore. Scott Walker + zombies? Fine by me), but I am legitimately excited for Halloween. It could be the fact that I'm actually doing things (Ford Models bash + a party for Convent), or maybe it's because I'm a sucker for all things autumn. I love pumpkins and squash, I love jackets, and I do kind of love witches. Recent years have resulted in Halloween cop-outs (Oberlin College house parties, hanging out in a Fort Greene warehouse for an hour, sitting in Penn Station long past the final drunk train, watching sexy cops and guidos masquerading as supermen stumble and vomit through the LIRR)...and if we're honest, this year is no different costume-wise.

I have a bad habit of planning EPIC costumes and promising myself that this year will be the one to go all out. Instead, I've ended up dressed as a mime (wearing a black-and-white striped turtleneck I'd worn to class three days earlier), throwing on a silly hat and calling it Victorian, and trying to convince people that no, I WASN'T just wearing normal clothes, I was totally dressed like Dieter of Sprockets fame. (Addendum: Kyle MacLachlan looks EXQUISITE there.) Meg had the super-awesome idea of me being Rachael from Blade Runner, but I sadly didn't have the time, patience, or money to buy/make an 80's-meets-40's blazer with huge shoulders. I also don't have nearly enough hair.

next year, i swear

Other ideas included Lydia Deetz from Beetlejuice (capitalizing on how everyone says I looked like Winona Ryder when she was relevant; Chelsey nabbed this costume first), every member of The Human League Mk. II (no wig required!!!!), and Jane Lane (wig required ;__;). In the end, I just bought a cheap black bob wig and will go as Random Twenties Floozy. I already have a great reconstruction dress and the false eyelashes, and the decade's definitely hot right now: Boardwalk Empire steeze, right?

anita berber + sebastian droste: decadent weimar idols

I figure it's a good costume for Ford; I'd love to look luxe next to the altogether more glamorous models, who will undoubtedly be decked out in their sexy finest. For future, comparatively casual Halloween weekend adventures (running away from evil ghouls in haunted houses???), I'll take the same wig, hairspray it up, and become...

...the ULTIMATE lazy costume. At least Cesare would involve some meticulous makeup--those black eye triangles!

Friday, October 22, 2010




A million times yes!

It's very easy to please me with black and grey, but this editorial from Vogue Turkey's October 2010 issue is so incredibly lush. Shot by Hans Feurer and starring Elise Crombez (good to see her back in VT after they 'shopped her beyond recognition--where did her nose go?), the pieces featured have such an incredible sense of movement; I love seeing so much Yohji Yamamoto and Haider Ackermann in an editorial.

The dramatic coats, hats, and leather gloves (and those Rick Owens wedges!!!) have such an arch, lady-of-the-manor vibe; the way they blow and change shape in the wind is epic, to say the least. Elise is also rocking the deep plum lips of the season without looking like a 90's castoff (am I contradicting myself here? Yes. I don't care).

The newer Vogues are sort of knocking it out of the park lately. (See also "A Lo Twiggy" in Vogue Latin America. It's oodles of fun, and stop me before I say "whimsical" because that word is fucking TIRED.) Perhaps it's because they don't have established reputations; perhaps it's because they're not eating out of a dated, old-guard elite's hand; perhaps it's my own bitterness because I'm exasperated with people like Carine Roitfeld. But heaven knows I want every piece in this editorial.

...except, y'know, that Ann Sofie Back cutout jumpsuit. I don't think that would work.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

from boys to men (from NYT sunday styles)

Well, scratch everything I said about men's fashion, body image, and androgyny four months ago; seems Guy Trebay and LEADING INDUSTRY EXPERTS like the editor of Maxim have declared that pipe-cleaner prepubescents are out, and rugged, MANLY MEN are in.

josh brolin + jeff aquilon, both v man

I needn't repeat the obvious about Hedi Slimane's history at Dior Homme and as a photographer. We know he loves youth, pin-thin tailoring, and the indie rock world; he's credited with making those baby-faced androgynous male models on the catwalks ubiquitous. But the industry is tiring of "skinny skate-rats," as Trebay so eloquently puts it, and looking towards older, weathered, more traditionally masculine standards. Which, as it tends to do, leads to really offensive language about the nature of manliness.

"The twink thing seems over. When people open GQ, I don’t want them to feel like they’re looking at clothes on 16-year-olds," Jim Nelson, editor of GQ, says. "When we cast, we want a model with some heft to him and a few years on him. Someone who has aged a little bit and who feels like he’s a man.”

I can understand the movement away from boys who look like they've been plucked out of high school; in difficult economic times, male consumers want to see well-built men who work and do manual labor--men who look like they're mature enough to purchase the goods they're selling. They want their icons to embody purchasing power and heritage luxury, and an emaciated teenager isn't going to do it. (Not to mention I'm not super keen on 16-year-olds being pushed onto the runway, male OR female.) Sam Shahid, creative director of Shahid & Company, says, "Look back to movies during the Depression, and all you saw was real guys like James Cagney. In tough times, people want a strong man." (Of course, it's a rather frustrating point that men become stronger, tougher, and more MANLY post-recession whereas women's skirt lengths just get shorter and heels higher--which I STILL CAN'T BELIEVE is a legitimate socioeconomic theory. Male success is rugged, protective strength, female is overt sexuality. Hmm.)

hedi slimane photography

That said, no matter how snappy and headline-grabbing such language may be, there is no reason to conflate skinniness and youth with a false, or rather lacking, manhood. Other than Levy rather charmingly calling models like Slimane's boys "twinks," the NY Times article also throws around words like "waify," "jailbait," and diametrically opposed, "Real Man" capitalized. I suppose it's the gay male gaze of the fashion industry, as well as the objectifying nature of modeling, turned negative and dehumanizing; just because such a homosexual male demographic of "twinks" exists doesn't mean that every ectomorph in the modeling biz is wide-eyed, immaturely naïve, and effeminate.

If I'm allowed to quote/paraphrase myself, it's the fear of more ambiguous gender presentation in fashion rearing its ugly head again. It's the same reason why Polly Vernon declared that "gobsmackingly lean silhouettes" in male modeling would lead to the mainstreaming of "manorexia" in that old Guardian article--it's not that anyone is really concerned about male body image, just that fashion industry darlings like Cole Mohr ("a model with jug ears and the body of a teenager" as Trebay puts it) are too frail, too awkward, and too delicate to be men. Such notions of the Real Man, or the Mad Men-ification of fashion (square-jawed, mature masculinity, a time-travel symbol of a man who likes a stiff drink and who sports a few lines around the eyes), is just a more microscopically-focused expression of queerphobia and misogyny. It's like the bullshit pipe-dream stories about "curvy" female models: how even now, Lara Stone can't give an interview without the writer making reference to her size 4 physique or her tits, or how putting (a recently slimmed-down) Crystal Renn on your runway or in your Vogue is a sign of progress. (Which, Terry Richardson and Carine Roitfeld, we have a problem.)

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

holy money, holy love

This past Friday, my friend Maheen and I went to see Swans at the Brooklyn Masonic Temple. I'd heard a lot of insanely positive reviews about this tour, drawing on the sonic assault of the new incarnation's performance and Michael Gira's, masturbation during the Montreal gig. (Thankfully, friends tell me he hid it behind his guitar. I guess he was as moved by hearing "Sex, God, Sex" as we all were.)

BMT has been host to a lot of intense shows, Throbbing Gristle and sunn o))) among them; it hasn't earned its reputation as "the loudest venue in NYC" for nothing. In my humble opinion, though, this was one of the most impressive, bone-crushing gigs they've ever had. It was a set heavy on material from Swans' latest album, My Father Will Guide Me Up a Rope to the Sky (incredible, FYI, and one of the best of the year), but it was quite the treat to hear "I Crawled" and other early songs. Quite frankly, for a show so powerful that it rocked your eardrums to the very center, it was actually quite beautiful, almost religious in its scope. Even though I was a wimp two-thirds of the way through and went up to the old-people balcony seats (even with heavy-duty ear plugs, being shoved against the amp at a Swans show is no picnic), staring down at a packed crowd of rapt, headbanging concertgoers was such an epic feeling. It was a definite treat to be at their first NYC show in 13 years.

Also worth mentioning: before the show, Maheen ran into opener Baby Dee in the restroom. She actually changed into a special, fuzzy dalmatian-print pair of pajamas for the concert. Afterwards, we took a brief trip downstairs to catch Sasha Grey, DJ JonBenet, and other folks spin some tunes at the after-party; the music they were playing was right up my street (I heard the Human League's "Being Boiled," for one), but the middle school dance vibe was not. As Meg so eloquently put it on my Tumblr, "a bunch of aging goths hangin’ around the basement like some sort of David Lynch bar mitzvah sponsored by Hot Topic." Indeed. We cut out pretty early.

Oh, and Steve Buscemi was there. Love Boardwalk Empire.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

androgyne, ph. david sims

This editorial for Vogue Paris' October 2010 anniversary issue falls swiftly in tandem with my love letter to Richard Nicoll and the Thin White Duke.

Iselin Steiro bears a pretty fabulous, uncanny resemblance to David Bowie, Cracked Actor times.

Seems the fashion industry is finally tapping into the Bowie inspiration as it always should have been, because I actually don't want to roll my eyes at this. Instead, I'm playing a guessing game trying to match these outfits to their original 70's counterparts. Obviously Bowie never bared his tits in the back of a limo, but he did find a fly in his milk there. Can you match 'em up?

nicolas andreas taralis

photos courtesy of dazeddigital

Inspired by youth/street cults, Old European and Far Eastern tribes, and bleak, black explorations, Nicolas Andreas Taralis (back in action for a second season after a quick stint at Cerruti in 2007) presented an industrial, moody collection that has me psyched for the rest of Paris.

The larger part of me hopes Taralis will hone his aesthetic and make his own, unique statement; I love black as much as the next girl, but fashion's gothic leftfield is overcrowded as is: Rick Owens, Ann Demeulemeester (whose name practically SCREAMED at me through this entire presentation), 90's Yohji Yamamoto...he's absurdly talented, and he has a knack for hand tailoring (as he should, considering he studied under Helmut Lang), and he deserves to have his own name in (stark, washed-out white) lights.

Traditional garments came undone with low, V-shaped open backs, square mesh jigsaw panels, rips at the hips, and unraveling suspender straps; I fell in love with a pair of carrot pants in a patchwork of mesh and black silks, and his vaporous sheers and cut-out tops led to more literal forms of exposure. I'm also really into the distressed black fabrics dyed and bleached into a sort of industrial floral. I predict really, really good things from Taralis in the future.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

what i wore: undead FNO

photo courtesy of obscurealternatives; the satanic mortuaire on the left

My first what I wore today? Or perhaps, what I wore two weeks ago on Fashion's Night Out.
jacket: Helmut Lang
top: Pudel by way of obscurealternatives
pants: Kaylee Tankus
triangle necklace: that damned obscurealternatives again (the three of us matched like a gothy girl band)
balloon: Marni (I'm not kidding.)

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

acne spring/summer 2011

The Atacoma. The Admire. Those Swedes at Acne sure know their way around a statement-making shoe.

warning: by clicking this photo you acknowledge that feet are ugly

So is this the shoe we'll all be sporting come Spring 2011? This bizarre hybrid between Japanese Okobo sandals and an orthopedic wedge? As if the market wasn't already crowded with impossible footwear (the sickle-shaped Nina Ricci boots, Alexander McQueen's now infamous armadillo heels) and the cultural theory that comes with them--masochism? A strange relationship between economic crisis and heel height? (I wish I were kidding, although no one can seem to provide a reason why beyond a need for "escapism." Perhaps market analysts never took a high school psychology class, because correlation doesn't equal causation. That said, QI just told me that skirts get shorter during times of economic at least both aren't happening at the same time.)

Crisis or not, I'll pass. Interesting, though, that the Burberry stilettos were a model's undoing (1. I feel like a sadistic bitch posting this video, 2. Annie Lennox's voice grates here, and 3. I still covet that spiked leather jacket, which is awesome considering the collection was pretty garish and mediocre) while Acne's, with seemingly no ankle support, glided with relative ease.

But on to the clothes. They've hit the nail on the head with this collection--loooooooooong, languid silhouettes, seemingly effortless layering, the perfect amount of slouch. I've had my eyes on a super-slim maxi skirt for a long time, and I'm in love with the leather jackets and vests studded with black freshwater pearls. How can something be so serene and nonchalant, yet so tough at the same time? Fashion journalism: the only field that allows such pretentious oxymorons.

I'm digging the teensy, alien-esque sunglasses too.

bad motherfucker

Questionable views on women and a bizarrely shaped head...I love you, Nick Cave, and happy good god damn birthday.

(a quiet nod to the dearly departed Rowland S. Howard, who provided this blog with a great name.)

May you continue to antagonize and, quite frankly, turn me on well beyond 53. Roll on Grinderman, November 14!

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

the european canon is here

richard nicoll spring '11 moodboard

I kind of love it when something fashion-y comes along and renews my love for something I've all too shamefully ignored for a while. Richard Nicoll's ode to the Thin White Duke, with hints of vintage erotica and Mariano Fortuny, did just that.

Those trousers are impeccably draped and I need a pair in my life, stat. I'll never give up the, like, two pairs of skinny jeans I own (second skin), but I just love the elegance of a well-tailored, voluminous wide leg. The way Nicoll layers sheers and pleats, pairing them with leather bustiers and Lurex and PVC pants for an ever-so-slightly naughty manages to be androgynous and alluringly feminine in equal measure. I also like to think that the orange cheeks were another clever homage to Bowie as the Thin White Duke.

To be honest, most womenswear designers who reference Bowie just elicit an eyeroll from me. It usually means a hackneyed, glittery collection of glammed-out Ziggy castoffs, and I'm pretty tired of that. Of course the Ziggy Stardust albums have their allure, and there's always something to be mined out of the otherworldly, all-out performance element of true glam rock; we could go into an overdone treatise on sexuality and how one defines CAMP, but that's another discussion for another time. But I was always a Duke girl...the first Bowie song I'd ever heard, if I recall correctly, was "Golden Years." I'd already developed a major interest, both academically and sartorially, I guess, in the Weimar era of German (more specifically Berliner) history, and TWD's stark, Teutonic glamour really appealed to me. A crisp white button-down, black vest, those black wide-legged trousers again: that's it. An equally monochromatic stage show illuminated only by blinding white lights. The mechanical, but somehow still achingly romantic (oh, Bowie, you plastic Soul Man), driving chug of "Station to Station." I mean, I'm glossing over the cocaine abuse, paranoia, dubious allusions to fascism, and witchcraft for convenience. I do love that shit. Here's a photo of Bowie drawing the Tree of Life for kicks.

The Thin White Duke, not to mention Thomas Jerome Newton from The Man Who Fell to Earth, has long influenced menswear, but it's just nice to see it done with such power and sex appeal for women. Thank you, Richard Nicoll. You've indirectly renewed my infinite, but dormant, love for David Bowie, and thank goodness for fashion sometimes. He's been surprisingly absent from my charts, and hey! It's just in time for the EPIC re-release of Station to Station.

One of you must love me enough to drop $150 on this as a Christmas present to me. Actually, I'm torn between the boxset and Chanel's Cuir de Russie exclusive. So make up your mind. In the meantime, I'll pop on The Man Who Fell to Earth; it's a terrible movie, really, but as far as Bowie eye candy is concerned, it sure as hell beats The Hunger. Never before has a movie so overpromised in its first ten minutes, only to crash and burn in a vapid, hyper-stylized 80's FAIL.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

fashion week roundup


my chosen lazy hairstyle + sunglasses indoors to skip makeup FW routine

I'm more objective and colorful in my reviews elsewhere, but come Spring 2011, here's what I'll be sporting.


Inevitably, I adore this. Sleek, futuristic, and let's make a horrible pun here: uniSEXY! This was perhaps the iciest goth-fashionista crowd I'd seen all of Fashion Week (even Katie Gallagher's was warmer), but they actually melted over the amazing, Bauhaus-architecture-meets-Nintendo-8-bit MYKITA sunglasses. I do hope to see some growth from Hourani soon; he's young, he's adorable, and what he's doing in terms of "androgynous" fashion is intriguing (see my post on the male ideal downpage). However, this could be any season...I didn't know I'd be loading up on PVC trousers and giant jackets for spring. There is little, save price point, that distinguishes this diffusion line from his namesake--and for that matter, from Rick Owens or anyone else doing the monochrome, architectural androgyne thing. I still want him to be my personal dresser.


A slicker, more aerodynamic interpretation of her witchy aesthetic, complete with bright punches of red and blue; if it were remotely possible to run in the astronomically high, geometric Raphael Young heels, it's what would happen if punks started to take up exercise. (Fun fact: Katie Gallagher, with her amazing head of silver hair and a wardrobe to out-greyscale mine, runs across the Williamsburg Bridge every day. Phew!) Plus, any girl who uses Einstürzende Neubauten and Front 242 as her soundtrack (not to mention Coil underscoring her last) is a friend of mine. Impeccably detailed...what I wouldn't give for a pair of her cut-out leggings, and the girl has such a way with juxtaposing textures. It took all of my fashion decorum not to touch some of her knits or leathers--but perhaps that would have jolted the models out of their open-eye slumber.

(NB: seriously, I went to a lot more presentations than ever before, and I can't help but wonder what the hell goes through these models' heads. The boys at Buckler were really relaxed, chit-chatting with the audience, and a few of Alice + Olivia's girls seemed equally engaged, but otherwise? Damn near comatose. I know I'd be up on that platform, no matter how incredible my look was, and I'd immediately get an itch or start wiggling my nose.)


Sometimes I really wish I were not so predictable. It's almost unsettling to me that I indeed dove headfirst into the 90's this season; my proudest purchase was a sheer-sleeved Helmut Lang jacket, and here I am extolling the greatness of Yohji Yamamoto. I mean, it's an eternal thing, but when Natasha, Chelsey, and I threw a zesty sleepover to kick off Fashion Week, we watched The Craft almost entirely without irony. I wish I could figure out why loving the 90's gives me such an existential crisis. Maybe because kids who were born in 1993 are entering college and, in some cases, have more computer savvy than I do.
This collection, ultimately, is entirely out of touch with and irrelevant to my daily life. I am not the type to be up in the gym just working on my fitness (see, this IS an outpost for the embarrassing pop culture nuggets I know), and such dalliances in midriff-baring, no matter how amazingly draped and "goff-on-the-go" they may be, are just really impractical and unflattering. Y-3 has been better; Yohji Yamamoto, avant-garde and wonderful with black he may be, is far more suited to romantic flights of fancy than EDGE. I love the 90's now, unabashedly, but I wish his PUNK ROCK reference points went a little deeper than Edward Scissorhands electric-shock hair, getting the Duke Spirit to perform, and putting chains on EVERYTHING. I do still want a pair of those gigantic pants in my life...whether I end up pairing them with an ab-tastic bustier remains to be seen.


I'll leave Alexander Wang to the bitchy Cathy Horyn. Ouch. How interesting that he wants to move away from the black motorcycle jacket + skinny jean obsession he claims as his own doing when Horyn is quick to remind us..."the collection downloaded the ideas of designers like Ann Demeulemeester and Issey Miyake—naturally, without their sense of energy and intuition—and for that reason, despite some cute looks, the show was a little boring." Apparently this all is symptomatic of fashion's Internet disease, the easy accessibility of it all. No longer is this the exclusive domain of the rich, well-heeled, and double-barrel surnamed; Wang has most of his clothing manufactured in China, and Horyn sniffs at those who find such things new. Globalization and Twitter-ization be damned, you silly kids who think Wang's industrial street-chic and $90 T line are innovative. Are we all getting bored of it? Perhaps, although many of his mint and ivory looks were lovely (particularly the finale outfit on Freja) and perfectly in line with Spring 2011's light, airy minimalism--contrary to what I've posted above, most of the shows I went to were a sea of cream. But damn if this wasn't the fastest rise and eye-rolling fall I've seen. Poor guy.

Friday, September 10, 2010


Firstly, some technicals! Exit Everything is now its own domain...still accessible through Blogger, but so fresh and so clean clean on a business card. I also, finally, succumbed and re-upped my Twitter account. @exit_everything right here.
Alas, my phone was dead by the time I could express my joy and shame from introducing myself to Kate Lanphear while sporting what is ESSENTIALLY the exact same haircut.

Fashion Week has just kicked off, and I'm already pooped. Yesterday I went to Nicholas K--saw some GORGEOUS hoods, slouchy trousers, and combat boots (essentially proving my point in the post below: I DO fucking love the 90's)--the Project Runway finale, and Ruffian. Pleasing model facts: Hanne Gaby Odiele is pretty much my height. Lindsey Wixson is adorable in person, and very much a 16 year old girl. The Project Runway finale was a veritable clusterfuck--ten designers (personal favorites: April's "dusty dolls that washed away" collection featuring stunning ombré and a faded, ghostly neutral palette, and Andy's "statues come to life" in futuristic silver, grey, and green. For the record, Gretchen took about ten minutes to get out on the runway), Jessica Simpson's once again terrible sartorial decisions (her breasts entered the room long before she did), and cameras everywhere.

Today is Buckler, possibly Nautica, Editions Georges Chakra, and Lorick...oh, and Fashion's Night Out. I will most definitely be hitting up the Helmut Lang block party, OAK's black carnival, Opening Ceremony's flea market at the Ace Hotel, and, if it isn't too much of a loony bin, Barneys. I really just want to meet Daphne Guinness and have her spray me with Comme des Garçons fragrance. I wish this entry didn't have to be such an awful block of text, but here it is. Mobile devices allllllll Fashion Week, alas.