Saturday, August 1, 2015

Fashion meets Art: Georgia O' Keeffe

Artist Georgia O' Keeffe described her work as a means to express the "wideness and wonder of the world." The composition, color palettes and scale of the images certainly speak to this idea of wonder. Dating back to the time of their creation, her paintings of flowers have often been interpreted to have feminine qualities. Interestingly, designer Karl Lagerfeld seemed to invoke this spirit of powerful femininity in his Spring 2015 collection

In a literal sense, the Chanel fabrics mirror the floral motifs seen in O'Keeffe's paintings. 

But even beyond the fabrics, Lagerfeld connected to the spirit of feminine beauty and strength as he explored women's rights and politics. The models literally took to the runway in a protest style form with pickets and messages and for the audience at large. 

Many of the pieces in the collection also seem to speak to an era during which the feminist movement blossomed--the 1960s. The ponchos, skirt lines and accessories easily call to mind the styles of this period. The 1960s was a time of change as women increasingly entered the workforce and began fighting for equality. 

The 1960s presented an interesting exploration of gender roles and femininity. As Lagerfeld symbolically pairs the delicacy of florals with the power of a Chanel suit, he too continues the conversation.  


Beyond the Spotlight

Flawless makeup, tiaras, tutus and pointe shoes…these are tools that help create the dream of beauty we experience with ballet. As with any performance, there is more that goes on behind the scenes to craft the final image. With the position of an insider, dancer Kyle Froman began photographing the magical world of ballet while still with the NYCB. His photographs capture elements we may never see as an audience member. 
Just as Edgar Degas gave glimpses of ballerinas in the studio and in the stage wings through Impressionist paintings, Froman now uses photography as the mode of communicating the elegance of this world. 

In his book, In the Wings: Behind the Scenes at New York City Ballet, Froman invites readers into this world, highlighting the beauty, artistry and passion it takes to craft a performance. 

Images: Kyle Froman

Sunday, July 12, 2015

Flowers Alight

Carolina Herrera's Spring collection uses florals, but with non-traditional techniques. Rather than simply referencing classic flowers for the season, the designer utilized photo-quality techniques on the fabric and seemed to reference the modern art of James Turrell.

Turrell is known for his work using light and space as a language to drive interaction with viewers. Herrerra clearly employed this same language. She intertwined natural motifs with a treatment of colors that seems to be inspired by the behavior of light. 
What is interesting about light is that it is natural, but can also be produced using technology. In a similar way, this collection shows how the natural motif of flowers can be created using technology-driven printing techniques. 
Even though light cannot be touched or held, in certain spaces it takes on a 3D quality. Given the right treatment through draping, Herrerra proves that two dimensional fabric is the same way. 

A Mermaid's Tale

From pirates in classic black and white, to mermaids mirroring the cool blue tones of the ocean, the Rodarte Spring 2015 collection is like a high fashion version of Pirate's of the Caribbean. 

An off the shoulder sweater layered with a sheer top instantly brings to mind the classic pirate shirt.

 As the black and white make way for shades of blue and green, you can't help but imagine the mermaids and sirens that beckoned the pirates to enter the cool ocean waves. 

"The Little Mermaid" by Edvard Erickson in Denmark

Using textures and colors, the sisters of Rodarte beautifully construct wearable art inspired by the sea and its tide pools. 
The collection is the perfect antidote to a hot summer day. I'm ready to dive in to the world of mermaids, are you?

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Queen of Style

At the helm of the Alexander McQueen fashion house, Sarah Burton continues to prove she is fashion royalty with collections like the one she created for Fall 2013.
The designer admittedly used religious imagery from the Catholic church, but what I find interesting are her references to Elizabethan style.

The style of the garments themselves reveal Elizabethan qualities: high necklines with the ruff collar, quilting and over the top ornamentation with beading.
The Elizabethan era references continue with corset belting and voluminous sleeves.  

Though long past, Queen Elizabeth's reign over style remains evident; a beauty and strength that can't be forgotten.

Thursday, September 12, 2013

American Paradise

As John Mayer's latest album Paradise Valley stays on repeat in my car, I can't help but think of the spirit of Americana.
With songs inspired by the Midwest, the music makes me imagine wide open spaces, cool mountain breezes, the smell of fresh pine and the style of Ralph Lauren.
Listening to Wildfire as the last rays of summer fade, you can dress the part in fringe, leather and lace as seen in Ralph Lauren's Spring 2011 collection.

As the temperatures drop, transition your wardrobe as easily as a paper doll from the lightness of lace to the warm cocoon of plaids and Native-American inspired layers like those seen in the Fall 2008 Ralph Lauren collection.


Tuesday, September 3, 2013

A Tale of Fashion Magic

From the pages of children's books to the pages of fashion's favorite magazine, Roald Dahl's stories came to life in Vogue UK.
 Shot by Tim Walker in 2008, the editorial called on artistic greats like Tim Burton and models who included Karen Elson to add color and character to each shot.

 Just as Roald Dahl stated, "Those who don't believe in magic will never find it." So open your eyes and find a little magic...