Embroidered Dragons and Flowers of the Streets

An interesting trend is making its way onto the streets for this spring. Combining the past and the present, this stylistic robe is transforming into a modern “thing to wear.” This traditional garment is known as the kimono.

Dating back to traditional Chinese culture, this oriental artistic robe is rising in popularity in the fashion world. Heavily influenced by traditional Han Chinese clothing, this T-shaped, straight-lined robe, was adopted by the Japanese culture and was made into a particular women’s fashion. Wrapping around the body with a hem that falls to the ankle and with  natural fluttering long-flapped sleeves, these kimonos are often worn on special occasions and seasons, whether it may be a child coming of age or a graceful wedding ( signifying the beginning of a journey). Festive in its colorful designs of dragons, flowers, and scenes of nature, these kimonos were and still are beautiful and extraordinary.

For this spring, the kimono has been revamped into a modern, chic design. Still having motifs of imaginative imagery and decorations of a wide variety of embroidery and design, these kimonos contain the ideas of the past with views of the present. With silk touchings and a slight bohemian edge, the kimonos of the streets are unique and aesthetically pleasing. These shrug-like draped looks could reach lengths to your ankles, knees, and even waist. With a variety of lengths comes a variety of colors, patterns, and textures. From muted colors of tan, white, and black, to more bold colors of red, yellow, and blue, there are many options! Pastel floral artworks, sheer texture and fringe, velvet accents– this trend is something customary with a twist!

Making a presence at this spring’s Japan Fashion Week, traveling off the runways to the urban streets of Paris, London, Tokyo, and New York, the kimono has made its presence known! This street style is traditionally vivacious!

Precisely Peplum and Pleats

Pretty pretty peplum and pretty pretty pleat, both of these structural designs are breathtaking and flourishing in their divine appeal. This spring, these captivating trends are making there way onto the runway, the red carpet, and in the streets. Whether it is a flared ruffle attached to a dress or a retro skirt achieving stylistic effects, both of these pieces are shining in their affinity to the past and daring recreation in the present.

The transformation of the peplum waist is remarkable. From its early Greek origins as a “tunic”, it has redeveloped into a design that is both flattering and beautiful. During the 19th C. and later on in the 1940’s, peplum was stylish in its enhancement to the women’s figure and grace. Changing from a short overskirt, to women’s suiting, to a now modern chic design, peplum is unique and functional. As shown above, peplums are flirty and feminine. Pinching at the waist and fluttering outward, these designs give off a fashionable allure and a whimsical quality. Skirt or dress, this is a must-see trend that must be worn!

*Side note: Try the peplum waist as a skirt or a dress! Dress it up with different materials and accessories! Have fun with it!

Pleated skirts are back. Loosely flowing on the runway, these lightweight pieces encorporate design, texture, and a hint of both femininity and boldness. From Prada to Rodarte, these timeless movable designs are effortless. Inspiration rising from the desire of cultural and social savoir-faire, these skirts exude suggestive appeal with a hint of reserve. In many different colors and with possible traces of metallic shine, pleated skirts are wonderful. Whether they have knife, accordion, fluted, or superfine pleats, these folded fabrics are perfect!

* Side Note: Pleats are wearable in many different ways. From scarfs to shorts, this trend can be worn on more than just fancy occasions!

Both of these trends are beautiful and stunning. Feminine, modish, and dashing, peplum and pleats have returned and are gracefully flowing into the fashion world for this spring.

In order of appearance: Jason Wu Spring RTW 2012, Prada Spring RTW 2012

Empire Fashion and Big Apple Craziness

A cosmopolitan wonderland…

Central Park, Grand Central Station, the Empire State Building, the Statue of Liberty…

THE FASHION!

Oh, New York City how I love you so!

New York City is a city of opportunities. It is a city of diversity, culture, and life. People can be whoever they want to be, feel whatever they want to feel, dress however they want to dress. There is no dullness or dreariness; rather, there is variety, vitality, and vivacity all mixed into one crazy and daring place of hopes and dreams!

This past weekend I went to the Big Apple and couldn’t help but get caught up in its flurry of excitement! Walking the paved streets, hailing down taxi cabs, looking up at the tall skyscrapers encompassing the sky, hearing the sounds of incessant chatter and laughter- I couldn’t be happier!

I was especially ecstatic to see all of the people who surrounded me and to see the variety of patterns, textures, and designs capturing their figures and frames. The essence of fashion was achieved. Daring bold colors, grungy hipster cargos of green and tan, sleek black blazers and dark jeans….New York City is a city of inventiveness with a variance of zest and flare in both fashion and design! Let’s take a look at some of the street style looks…

Just a pop of color goes a long way…

Vivid colors are brightening up the streets of NYC. From green to pink, these loud statement pieces show much audacity and spirit! Catching my eye, these pronounced bolds are fearless with their striking prominence and loudness. Right on trend, these bold “highlighter” colors make styles complete and unique. This dramatic color palette of the season demands attention and succeeds in gaining it! Confident and cheerful, these colors are taking  the streets of NYC at a rapid speed!

Culture within the independent hipster…

Trendy, progressive, urban, indie, vintage–all characteristics to describe the one term, hipster. An urban bohemian style look is seen in NYC tracing the subcultures of middle-class urban lifestyles. Straying away from the typical, mainstream outlook on fashion, these hipster looks are different and individualistic. From cargos, to florals, to leathers, there are no specific boundaries as to where this fashion could take you. These outfits give style a whole new outlook with a liberal perspective on the dynamics of the fashion world. These looks defy the norm and exude creativity and self-identity.

Sleek design and classic chic…

These timeless pieces of structure and finesse are and always will be appearing in NYC. Evoking femininity with a mix of simplistic colors of mostly black, tan, and white, these designs are effortless. With a continuous presence of beauty and stature, the classic chic style is framed and put together. Trench coats, blazers, skinny jeans, and high heels, these quintessential, uncomplicated, modern outfits are city chic–stylish and in vogue.

New York City is a timeless city filled with art, architecture, literature, design, and fashion. It is rich in its culture and versatile range of intelligence and beauty. What makes New York City great? Well, I will let you decide!

Photo Credits: Vogue

The Romantic Mind and Spirit

Lace, ruffles and sheer are making their way as bold new trends for this spring.  The Romantic Period has been awakened. Embodying thoughts of intellectuality and artistic discovery, this period of European history has come to life once again, but this time, on the runway.

Romanticism was a strong movement in literature and art in the late 18th and early 19th C. It celebrated the beauty and complexities of nature, imagination, and pure emotion. There was an aura of mystery during this time, an unexpected nature of everyday life. These principles and values have transformed this year in the likes of fashion and design. There was no designer better to awaken these beliefs than the late Alexander McQueen.

Alexander McQueen was a true visionary, expressing his ideas through extravagance and an array of colors, textures, and patterns. He created an intimate relationship between design and the human-being; an undeniable presence of beauty and grace. His crafts of art exhibited his true romantic spirit, whether it was gothic, nationalistic, exotic, primitive, or natural. His designs exuded powerful emotions of love, despair, and grief. They were almost dream-like; a tormented originality. Intricate, dramatic, artistic, detailed, theatrical, and haunting, McQueen was a designer who was daring and intuitive.

Although he has passed, his pieces live on and his beliefs remain in the creative mind of Sarah Burton– the new creative director of the McQueen line. She certainly does not disappoint with her Spring 2012 collection of nature and the mother pearl of the sea.

Inventiveness reigns supreme in this wonderful dress of structure and detail. Free of constriction, this beautiful piece of art is romantic in its similarities to nature and ingenuity. With ruffles cascading down the model’s silhouette and metallic silver detailing creating a powerful image, this dress is breathtaking. The texture is exquisite as is its uniqueness. It is not parallel to anything else seen on the runway for this spring. It resembles the image of an aquatic creature swimming on the deep ocean floor. Lace-masked heads netting the model’s face, sky-high heels pounding on the white gleaming runway floor, boldness and femininity mix into one enchanting romantic fantasy.

Regally romantic, this flowing gown of red, white and pink evoke feelings of enchantment and preciousness. Encrustations of white and light pink shower down its sheer, lovely cape, as mixed allusions of sea plant designs lead down to the ruched red bottom. This dress is a vision, an inventive image giving insight into the detailings of fashion and the sheer beauty of embellishment. There is an unmistakable warmth to the design, an inviting color scheme, an opulent conception. It evokes emotions of adoration and love.

This collection is mesmerizing and unforgettable. With beautiful ruffles, detailed lace, and colored beading, these designs are both elegant and daring. Romanticism is no longer a movement of the past. It is now an action of the present.

“And All That Jazz…”

It’s time to shed those winter clothes for something more fun and lively!

Shimmer, silk, and sparkle are captivating the runways for this spring. The magic and glow of the deco period, otherwise known as the 1920s has been reborn. The 1920s were a time of reform, a time of change. Morals were broken, stereotypes were ignored, and the true modern woman emerged. These women known as “flappers” flaunted their free spirits and their fashionable tastes. This spring, echos of this period’s unique style are emerging. From Ralph Lauren to Marchesa, these designs from New York’s Fashion Week (Spring 2012) are captivating the true flapper style and I could not be more excited!

Imagine yourself in a crowded speakeasy. Enchanting songs of jazz music are playing as inescapable smells of illegal alcohol permeate the air. Imagine yourself with a short bobbed haircut, as you sparkle with warmth and exhilaration. Imagine yourself being with the likes of gangsters such as Al Capone and movie stars such as Clara Bow, as you dance the night away. Is this picture in your mind? If it is, good. Let’s begin.

Ralph Lauren’s Spring 2012 collection elegantly captivates the past. Lauren creates simplistic designs in light, pastel colors. Cloche hats were worn on the models’ heads with loose fitting feminine skirts and blouses gracing their figures. Gravitating towards the formal wear, the dresses flow effortlessly and with movement. As shown in the picture above, the true modern “flapper” walks down the runway with jewels around her neck, feather boas wrapping her shoulders, and sequins sparkling. Patterned designs, shiny silks, and elegant heels draw attention and beauty.

Marchesa’s designs also allude to this exhilarating period of history. These designs are mesmerizing with encrusted beading and shimmering detail. These exquisite dresses are purely formal with their texture and magnificent artwork. Whether it is the tiny beading encomassping the models’ silhouettes or the dramatic effects of feathers and coloring, the 1920s fashions come alive.

The roaring ’20s has officially been reborn in the fashion world this spring. There is a remembrance of the jazz, the dancing, the rights, and the freedom of this past period of history. By looking at both of these collections in particular, one can picture the dazzle of the flappers as they danced the night away…

A True Green Gem!

And the final Oscar for best outfit goes to… Viola Davis!

My one word to describe this outfit: radiant!

Au natural is the way to go!

Another amazing actress and another amazing designer! This Vera Wang custom gown was both long and flowing. With its emerald color and mermaid-style shape, this strapless, cleavage-bearing gown was absolutely stunning! Viola Davis truly stood out in this shining creation with its sparkling embroidered neckline and pleated detailing fanning out from the knee. This dress hugs Davis’s curves in all the right places and makes her truly glow! Besides the stunning gown, what I love most about Davis and this outfit all together is her decision to keep her hair natural. She finally decided to ditch the wig and be herself! I thought this decision was both bold and mesmerizing! Not being afraid to be yourself, isn’t that what fashion is all about? Davis was a real jewel this past Sunday and made the Oscars red carpet sparkle!

On a side note…Make sure to check back this weekend as I talk about one of the hot trends this upcoming spring that particularly caught my eye! 

Marilyn is that you?

Wow Michelle Williams, Your Week with Marilyn certainly paid off!

My one word to describe this outfit: classic!

Cute and coral! Marilyn..ahem.. I mean Michelle looked flawless!

I applaud to the creative director of Louis Vuitton, Marc Jacobs, not only because this dress was beautiful, but also because he picked the perfect person to wear it! Williams looked forever adorable with her short blonde pixie cut and bright coral and plum colored lips. This ruffled, coral colored dress was absolutely precious! With a peplum waist and a small bow at the hip, this dress showed elegance at its finest. Lovely, brilliant, and classic, this outfit was immaculate! With a simple diamond necklace to top it off, I almost felt as if I was seeing the real Marilyn Monroe come back to life! Love, love, and love!