Trends are a fickle lover.
It is that what draws us to them is both an acceptance, however meager, of aesthetic worth as well as a sort of coveting of affection; it’s like hanging out with the popular crowd in jr. high. You didn’t really even like them, considering what Claire behind your back after English you couldn’t say they were nice girls, but you were dying to be a part of their circle. They exuded a confidence and domination of their surroundings that, though their methods were lacking in refinement and they really should have stayed away from mommy’s makeup, their presence still commanded more attention than you did with your timid shuffle and your Tweety Bird sweatshirt. Unfortunately this catty behavior will sometimes remain well after she leaves the locker rooms and scrunchies of secondary education.
Now I understand that elitism is intrinsically intertwined with fashion and while the latter can be liberated but there are still echoes of exclusivity that are part of the thrill.
As much as the Elite French in the 17th century seemed to take drastic measures to prove their worth through wealth to the King, so do we put a great deal of weight on the socioeconomic condition we reflect. It is the same goal by different means.
For most, it is an exercise in vanity; an beautiful expression of self in others, those such rare cases of genuine inner confidence and purity of heart which radiate and catch us in awe. That is not to say that we are most of us vain little devils seeking to steal the limelight, in fact I would like to think that we are trying in part to simply bring about more beauty in the world, not just in our aesthetic appeal or superficial personal advancement, but I would say that there are a fair number of this sort.
When this style hysteria meets the business side of the trade, it follows that such a beast as the trend should arise as we know it today.
From what I can make of it thus far, it is a perpetuating factory of the new “in” look (why it’s “on trend”).
Candy for the magazine covers, meat for the journalists, someone to follow, something to crave.
I speak from a lack of compelling evidence to convince me that this trend machine is not simply feeding the masses what they want, vomiting it back up in a new form and feeding it to them again, simply for the sake of always having something to sell and something to buy. And while I can venture from here into a discussion regarding the effects of a capitalistic system I will instead muse upon the notion of wanting.
There is a part of us that will always want candy, even when we know it is just sugar.
I know I’m the last to jump on the Polyvore train, but my return to fashion begs for a styling outlet.
It’s a learning process, but I’d like to share a couple sets that I am particularly proud of:
This set I did as a tribute to Jason Wu as part of Polyvore’s Lunar New Year Contest.
If you don’t know his work (apart from what you see above), you should, it’s beautiful.
Check it out HERE. (Be warned: there’s music)
The second was just for fun, a set based on that beautiful feathered shoe:
In fact, I am devoting a page to my styling adventures, so I’m not clogging up your feeds with this over and over, but you still have easy access.
You’ll find it here (and up on my Header).
What’s your take?
Do you play with Polyvore?
I find that the crap you carry around tells an interesting story about you, especially with the consideration that were you of the opposite sex you would undoubtedly not have all of these things on your person.
Let’s see what we can discern from my purse contents spilled out for all to see.
To start, this is my baby; my beautiful Hugo Boss purse (my reward for hours of sample sale work):
And this is all the crap I jam inside:
Notable goods include:
For fresh breath regardless of mood: Dentyne Fire and Eclipse Peppermint
For self-defense: a box cutter and a sharpened plastic stick (thanks Dad!)
For a coffee fix regardless of mood/location: A Starbucks and a Caribou card.
Three kinds of lipstuffs.
Two packages of tissues.
Money in three separate containers.
A lint brush; no fuzzies or stray hairs allowed on my sweaters.
And a tampon. Of course.
Details (because I like close-ups):
Drugs, another purse, and a Moleskin:
I get migraines. Those drugs are ALWAYS with me for when the meteor strikes.
My pretty green wallet/mini-purse has my credit cards and suchlike, as well as too many receipts, too few dollars, and tons of change (by which I mean useless pennies).
I need to have something more reliable than a napkin to write ideas (for outfits, projects, songs, grocery items, who knows) before I forget. Because I will forget.
And still more tissues, in case the first pack isn’t enough.
Yes, I also keep some of my money an plastic chocolate wrapper and one dollar in quarters in a little used-to-be keychain book. Just in case, I guess.
Three, count ’em, three lip items, if you will.
1. St. Francis chap-stick (for humility and moisturized lips!)
2. Mary Kay tinted moisturizer in Apricot ( for when chapstick doesn’t cut it, yet still subtle. I love it.)
3. CG Wetslicks in Fig Splash (for when I’m feeling a little more luscious)
And a travel pack of tissues.
Can you tell I’m a little indecisive?
(Uhhh…three kinds of lipstuffs, two flavors of gum. Yeah. That may be rather apparent.)
What are you stashing away in your purse? What does it say about you?
(And what do you think my crap says about me?)
I’d love to see/hear about it!
The colors! The shapes.
I’m going crazy for some geometrics and bold color palettes.
Is it cabin fever? Probably.
Does that make these pieces any less AWESOME?
I submit that it does not. (pssst. Brian Regan you make me laugh. All the time. Thanks.)
Thanks again Etsy. The journey is always an inspiring one.
I hope you enjoyed the eye candy.
All images are linked to their respective shops.
( – pssssssssst. You should snatch these things up, because I can’t.)
It all started with my dislike of shorts as cruisewear; I needed a dress to wear. I had about a $60 max to spend in this department, so we went to Target (I will not shop at wal-mart, just fyi – I cannot justify it). And boy, what a bargain!
I tried on six super comfy super cute dresses at Target yesterday, and came home with three of them, lamenting that a fourth was not in my size, all made well enough that I do not fear their disintegration when I wash them, and each for only $20 and under.
Here’s what I came home with:
Plus this one for my little sis.
I wanted this dress, but it was x-small 😦
If you are at all in need of summer dresses (say for instance, your summer will be spent in Savannah, Georgia), I would definitely suggest checking out Target’s current selection. They have all sorts of options; it’s awesome.
Yay Target! (this time)
It’s quite early and I love it. Here are some beautiful bits of inspiration for your day:
Flirty 1950s (Vogue 1954, I believe) –
A beautiful brown for sure, but what is up with the giant paperclip?
Well, that’s one way to juggle (ms. blue checks is not amused)
Oh greige; what is your flavouring?
Ruche‘s Spring Lookbook (part II):
Such dreamy soft colors; I’m feeling a seaside vibe, but without the overt nautical sailor-girl look, which is nice.
I love large pretty rings
That bag ❤ – pretty much my fave color too
Very pulled together; I like the shape of that belt, and the pairing with that bag…
The Absolutely stunning Armani Prive Couture Spring 2010 Collection:
And my previously unsorted treasure trove of beads:
Certainly less glorious here, but look at what is hidden within:
So many different colors and shapes!
And that ain’t the half of it — it took two summers to de-string and organize all 90 lbs. (- whew-)
I am going to have lots of fun creating from all of this splendor.
Hope you enjoyed my bit of musing, come back soon!
much love, kait
Some of you may know that I am in a constant search for beautiful things with a story, great design, and the inspiration for me to settle in my own fashion and other design work. Today’s cool things post centers around those that got away from the thousands-manufactured, impersonal outsourced design for profit, and opted for the small-scale, meticulous beauty of limited and loved designs. Straight from the designer rather than made in china appears to be a growing trend (or maybe i’m just noticing more and more of those that are new, and those that have stuck it out and stayed family-owned for generations).
In an amazing display of extravagent beauty and meticulous attention to detail, check out Judith Leiber‘s current line-up of clutches. In terms of my search, this doesn’t exactly fit the bill, but it sure is beautiful. Though, while the designer whose name graces the label retired more than ten years prior to this seasons bags, the company seems to have carried on her methods of meticulous hand-craft in her absence.
I am particularly fond of this birdcage gem(or several, really):
It feels like a carousel to me, in an odd way. The color scheme as well as the splendor, like that of a child viewing a carousel in only the best most fantastic light.
As I continue to grow in my fashion schooling, I am falling in love with the amount of hand-craft that is out there. I’m confident I’ll find my design niche among the widespread small-scale-handmade revolution.
George Esquivel, the designer of the above men’s shoe, popped into my History of Fashion class the other day (he had been giving a talk to the accessories majors, and then our dept. chair gave him a tour of the building). He is an amazing inspiration for the fact that he hand stains, hand burnishes his designs, and all in all sees his concepts all the way through to point of sale, working with only a handful of people all in his studio in California. No Chinese slave labor, no simple stamp of approval on something that will carry his name but he has no real hand in. Thia is masterfully hand-crafted footwear. For me, this is true design.
Another designer of note I happened upon via Oh Joy! ( a great source for inspiring images and design – loving the new oh bob! sections for the men at our sides) is Furze Chan, an artist in Hong Kong (check out her own lovely blog here).
I love these little puppets! Beautiful penwork. It’s an illustration and a toy! (Get them started early appreciating beautiful art and taking care of their things).
Among my other finds recently was one that is currently most inspiring; Brooklyn Tailors.
One of the few bespoke clothing shops in the country (that I could find anyway; it’s a lost art in America) Brooklyn Tailors are all about those things I mentioned I was looking for: small quantities to ensure utmost quality, the designers hand in the whole game, beautiful attention to personal fit and details. A small team produces great work. That is a beautiful thing. And their work is beautiful.
(I need to give these good folks a call and ask if they need an intern!)
That’s all for today. Certainly I will post more handcrafted delights as I find them. Feel free to let me know if you know any (or especially if you are the proprietor in search of some blog-love! I’d love to find them and love them too. Just leave me a comment or send me an email (firstname.lastname@example.org)!