Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

It's great when you can find treasure at discount stores.

Sur La Table Cabbage Bowl
$34.95 $5.95

"Made in Portugal, our Cabbage Patch earthenware collection is painted by hand, in two fresh new colors to mix and match. Safe for use in the dishwasher and microwave."

Sunday, November 15, 2009

The lapel suspenders are back again.

I wrote about them a while back. They were from Neil Barrett S/S 2009 and unfortunately, I was a little late on my shopping. They were gone before I had a chance to get them, and for a while was afraid they weren't going to make a comeback. I thought about it, but stores don't sell jacket lapels alone, so I was quite excited to see that they are selling them at Hot Topic. God, it seems it has been forever since I've last been in that store (I used to be into the the whole emo/punk/goth thing in high school). At $14.99, you really can't beat that. However, it pales in comparison to the $200+ Neil Barrett one. Well, I might just get it because I like the idea.

Courtesy of GQ, Hot Topic

Sunday, November 8, 2009

I'm kind of on a roll here.

I got chosen for the "Staff Picks" again. I don' know what I was really thinking when I wrote this. I guess I was trying to find the connection between the oxygen released from trees and quirky shape of the trees. I'm sure reading this blog, you could tell that I do a lot of explaining for no apparent reason really. When I wrote this, I kept in mind that perhaps people weren't that stupid. What do you guys think?

Courtesy of CB2

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Let's see what the West Elm vs. CB2 thing is all about.

So maybe I'll have a certain bias because I work for one of the companies, but in terms of style, I'll try to be as frank as I can. Both companies are rivals in the market of affordable modern living, yet they have so many similarities that the products kind of speak for themselves. Look at how similar the products are (Who's copying who?):

Hicks Glass Top Dining Table $399.00 Silverado Rectangular Dining Table $299.00
The main difference is about $100, but in terms of everything else, it's pretty hard to choose which one is better. I like that the Hicks table's is a brushed metal instead of of chrome finish, but I like Silverado's design more because the middle gap is visually more interesting.

Corduroy/Linen Pillow $14.99 - $28.00 $14.99 - $24.99 Cord Pillow $19.95-$39.95
I like West Elm's corduroy pillow more than CB2's because I like the big ribs. Also there are more muted color choices to work with. The only advantage CB2 has in this department is that theirs are reversible.

Essex Mirror $299.00 Perspective Mirror $149.00
For the price and look, the obvious winner is CB2. If I wanted my mirror to look dirty, I'd let it hang unattended, but I wouldn't want someone to do it for me. Also, the Perspective mirror has more abstract pieces put into it, so you get more of the design aesthetic.

Butler Tray & Stand$59.00 - $149.00 $39.99 - $149.00 Formosa Tray Table $49.95
Even though they're pretty similar, I like them both for very different reasons. The Butler Tray and Stand seem very sturdy and has an assortment of materials and colors of the tray to choose from. The Formosa tray table is a lot more clean-lined and simple. However, I don't really know how much it can carry before it collapses.

Organic Cotton Knit Throw $49.00 $39.00 Cable Throw $49.95
Although CB2 has a lot of fun colors, sometimes, it's about versatility and West Elm's throws seem to have that. On top of that the price is about the same, but theirs is an organic cotton. Green products will always pull at my heartstrings.

Adjustable Metal Floor Lamp $149.00 Twine Floor Lamp $199.00
I want to think one is better than the other, but it's hard to say which one is better. They both have tripod-esque legs, but I do like Twine's shape more. Also the proportion is a lot more interesting.

Metallic Botanical Rug $109.00 - $799.00 Pod Rug $299.00 - $599.00
I like CB2's Pod rug a lot more because the leaves are broken up and have bits of red outline. The metallic botanical rug is too "obvious." I'm looking at it the way a photographer probably would.

Organic Noodle Bath Mat $19.99 - $26.00 Cirrus Rugs $19.95
Okay, I don't think I'm that biased because West Elm's bath mat has won me over. Not only is it organic, but also the colors are beautifully subdued and the nubs are thinner. I like color, but there are times when it can obnoxious.

Scoop-Back Chair $99.00 Toro Chair $89.95
It's hard to judge them because they're almost identical. The Toro chair's blue looks like it belongs to West Elm because that's their signature color while CB2's is orange. Now, the scoop-back chair comes in many different colors, but I really don't like any of them, so Toro wins this round.

Courtesy of West Elm, CB2

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Lee, you never cease to amaze me.

If you didn't know already, Alexander McQueen is my favorite designer. Even though he pushes the avant-garde envelope very far, unlike other avant-garde designers, his designs have a sort of practicality to them. Also, every single piece he sends down the runway is a show-stopper in itself. For S/S 2010, he mixed different prints, colors and embellishments with Elizabethan silhouettes and space age styles.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Damn, you've "manned it up," Celine.

Phoebe Philo, the former fashion designer of Chloé made her debut with a bang at Celine S/S 2010. You could definitely see the strong Chloé influence, but I guess she just couldn't help it. I think it's a good move because over at Chloé, it was never really about the clothes but the accessories instead. Done are the days of flouncy femininity and what we now have are powerful modern women who dress the part too. Well, I do wish she kept a little bit of the romance that Celine seemed to embody under Ivana Omazic's reign.

This dress clearly comes from the inspiration of a lace-up boot. It's quite clever how they even added the tongue of a boot in there. I personally think the dress could do without the sleeves.

A leather that's a first. It's a little bit on the bizarre side, but from the look of the fit, it's quite remarkable. I love the silhouette of the wide leg pants; I don't know why more people aren't wearing them.

Is this a dress or are these separate pieces? I can't tell. Either way, it's very simple and clean-lined. The bottom is pleated but it's not flying all over the place, so you don't have to worry about having a "Marilyn Monroe moment."

This coat is beautiful all by itself. It's edgy but ever so wearable. The shape and texture are so rich that you can see right down to the intricate details .

I don't know what it is that makes this look so right. It might be the deep blue origami against Iris Strubegger's masculine beauty. Maybe it's the peek of white.

That leather bolero is striking! It adds just the right amount of drama to the white shirt and trousers. This is a new way of dressing, so run with it guys.

Courtesy of Style

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Dries Van Noten always knows how to strike my nostalgic chord.

Some things that you can always guarantee from Dries Van Noten are splashes of Mid-century Modern color and prints. He is so incredibly talented that he can make some of the ugliest prints beautiful, which a lot of designers cannot do. It's why I look forward to his collections. For F/W 2009, his collection is very reminiscent of the 1930s-1950s pre and post WWII era. "Edgily retro" is what I would call it.

It's the return of the Teddy girl, a subculture from the 1950s. The sage a-line skirt and the berry top could've been a "war of the colors," but the croc leather blazer became the diplomat.

Black and white has never looked so interesting. The print is very abstract and to add to that, the frills give it come dramatic volume to pump up the 1940s vibe. Oh, and if you can't see, the back of the heels of are black and white snakeskin.

Style-wise this look is very symmetrical. The skirt is so busy but it's toned down by the neutral tone. The orange sweater is simple, but you can almost hear the orange scream out loud.

This is my favorite look from the whole collection. It's got that classic 1930s style with a slight quirk through the snakeskin on the side. I especially love the ease of the blouse.

For S/S 2010, Dries has chosen to incorporate a lot of ethnic prints in his collection. The fact that he's able to manipulate them is beyond me because I avoid using them when designing. I wish I could be braver.

I'm not crazy about the diamond printed fabric, but Dries worked around it in a way that makes me crazy about it. I love the draping and the red bits strategically placed on the waist and neck/shoulder.

The giant bronze polka dots on the shorts are subtle but shine with movement. The boxy cropped blazer complements the shape of the shorts and the color contrasts it beautifully. This is what I would like to see a lot more on the streets.

I like the breezy interpretation of the kimono shirt-dress; it's great for the summer. The thick black pattern outlines add graphic interest to it.

As Chelsea Handler would put it: What... a beautiful shirt-dress. Instead of using different colors to create a plaid, he used different textures to show it off. It's also quite remarkable to infuse the holster and jacket together.

Courtesy of Style

Monday, September 28, 2009

It's the fall, and I'm looking at Missoni for inspiration.

Based on the economic climate right now, fashion can't really afford to look and feel opulent. Plus, aristocratic fashion doesn't really whet my appetite, which is why Missoni's "homeless chic" revival is really refreshing. I usually find Missoni quite bland, but I guess they upped their ante stylistically this season.

I like the monochromatic effect the colors seem to convey. The subdued signature Missoni zigzag pattern adds a lot more texture to the look, so nothing looks boring. Also, the hooded tube scarf is draped very beautifully.

The clothes have a lot of color, but is neutralized with the two long scarves flowing in tandem. I like the color palette of the skirt, but I like the patterns of the sweater. Stylistically, it would've been less of a visual interruption.

Wow, they've got some pretty neat tricks up their sleeve. The draped and hooded turtleneck sweater with zigzag graphics of the coat pair well. The color story and the contrasting length of the scarves is sparking some ideas in my personal style.

"Nomad" comes to mind when I look at this; is this in anyone's fashion forecast? The floral trench almost looks like a kimono, yet still keeps everything looking organic. Oh, and the hooded tube scarf drapes beautifully even when it's not on the head. I'm especially digging the color palette.

To me, the look says "summer's not really over yet." There's an ease to the look and the floral print is cheery. I would've actually liked to see Liu Wen's hair tucked inside the hat because that would give the look a lot more symmetry.

As a city boy, I love this because there's an urban touch to it. It's a little on the grungy side, which satisfies my personal taste; it's very sexy. The color palette sticks out in the collection for being dark. In that sense, it's the most wearable.

I think this is a wonderful interpretation of a pumpkin (oh no I didn't). I actually like many elements of this look like the crochet dress, the hat, and coat; it's got that 1920s/1930s vibe.

Courtesy of Style