Monthly Archives: December 2010

To Appreciate Street Art..

One must see Exit Through The Gift Shop. It just came out in theaters in France last week, so if you already saw it, please disregard.

I’m not going to get all into it but like, WOAH. This is the kind of documentary that makes you really appreciate the subject matter, which in this case is guerilla street art. The story goes like this: Amateur filmmaker finds his niche capturing and befriending REAL street artists on film for the first time, like Banksy, Shepard Fairey and Space Invader. After his first failed attempt at doing a documentary, Banksy challenges said amateur, “Mr. Brainwash,” to go back to LA and try creating his own art. ASSHOLE goes back to LA, employs an entire team of graphic and installation artists and knocks off pretty much ALL of his street art idols, yet achieves commercial success – as in he did the cover for Madonna’s Greatest Hits collection (shame on you Madge). Banksy himself said at the end of the film that he “always encouraged everyone to make art, and [he] doesn’t really do that so much anymore.” I say, Mr. Brainwash should be blacklisted from the art world, but it does go to show you that unfortunately knock-off artists have a place in our society. Below, the real innovators of street art.

BANKSY

SHEPARD FAIREY

SPACE INVADER

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Filed under Artists, Film

Patterning the Streets: Joie Reinstein

Of all the street blogs out there, this one – Pattern-Recognition Posterous – stands apart with an inquisitive voice and depth of real ground-up trendspotting. As in you’re going to want to follow it RIGHT NOW.

As of September, Joie Reinstein, whom I had met over a year ago when I spoke to her class at Parson’s, embarked upon a journey titled Radicant Fashion: An Exploration Around the World in 120 Days. She has already conquered New York City, Paris, London, Copenhagen, Helsinki, Beijing, Shanghai, Hong Kong and Tokyo. Next on her list is Fukuoka, Los Angeles, Rio and Sao Paulo. But like I said, this isn’t just any street style blog. Joie seeks to bridge connections between the cities she visits and fashion trends from the ground-up, and answer questions such as, “Does something a guy wears in Rio affect a girl’s outfit in the Lower East Side of New York?” Interviews with local designers and influencers are also featured.

Here are some of my favorite excerpts from her inspirational project so far. Everything below (and much, much more) can be found at Pattern-Recognition Posterous.

PARIS: “Qui se ressemble s’assemble,” as in birds of a feather flock together. I could attest to this, especially as far as teens are concerned.

LONDON: 60s Jane Birkin or Rockabilly New Wave Mod?

COPENHAGEN: Print and texture mash up, PLUS interview with Rene Gurskov, creator of Rene Gurskov Men.

BEIJING: Matchy-matchy couples, interview with the designer behind local brand LiangSanshi (including insight on “The (Alexander) Wang Effect”).


LiangSanshi

SHANGHAI: Street style inspired by the nature of OSPOP footwear, *PROUDLY MADE IN CHINA*.

HONG KONG: The Wang Influence continues, best-dressed dudes and interview with blogger Joey Ma.

TOKYO: Dandy or Varsity Candy?

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Filed under Brands, Inspiration, Lifestyle, Street

HEADS UP: London Holiday Windows

This week at Fashion Snoops, we’re posing our annual Holiday Window report. We already gave you sneak previews of New York and Paris, and now here’s a look at London’s leading department stores.. a few of which featured a recurring “head” theme.

Harrods
We first spy a “head” theme happening at Harrods, where large alien-meets-cartoon heads are featured upon mannequins. However comical, the heads used in this setting deflect interest back to the actual clothing on the mannequins, without comprimising on glimmering holiday backdrops of garland.

Selfridges
Selfridges also takes on the head theme with female mannequins sporting cartoonish heads and plastic-y bodies. The men’s displays feature Gumby-like characters and a bold colorful background keeps the childish playful notion going.

Harrods
Harrods goes the more traditional route with a familiar fairy tale – Peter Pan. The hair and beauty styling impress, while monochromatic window schemes are also enticing.

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Filed under Exhibits, Retail

When Pop Art Meets Versailles: Murakami

Admittedly, I am one of the last to have seen the magnificent Murakami Versailles exhibit. Indeed it ends tomorrow (Sunday, December 12th), and let it be known that this was certainly not my first attempt to see it; though it was the only successful one (why can’t every museum be open until midnight?). Any Parisians (or visitors) who have yet to see it, best get there ASAP.

A total of 22 works of art (and 11 pieces produced specifically for the exhibit) range from sculptures to paintings and even carpeting, shown in the King Louis XIV apartments and the Hall of Mirrors. While the naysayers argue that Murakami’s pop art takes away from the grand Château experience, I think that part of what makes the exhibit so incredible is the ironic fact that it features perhaps the greatest pop artist of our time set to such a magnificant baroque setting. For me, walking down Hall of Mirrors, seeing a Murakami sculpture down in the garden and then coming upon the Flower Matango sculpture was the most powerful take-away from the exhibit.

Overall I LOVED Murakami Versailles, though I did leave with one question. Recent Murakami exhibits like the retrospective at MOCA and the Brooklyn Museum both featured Louis Vuitton pop-up shops featuring products from the famed Louis Vuitton and Murakami collaboration. Why, in the capital of LV, would a collaboration (during such a grand exhibition) be ignored? Perhaps the space for a temporary pop-up shop was limited inside Versailles, but I would have loved to see some sort of tie-in between LV and the Murakami exhibit.. perhaps in the LV flagship on the Champs-Élysées.

However, perhaps most fitting to sum up the exhibit is Takashi Murakami’s own words, “I am the cheshire cat that welcomes Alice In Wonderland with its diabolic smile, and chatters away as she wanders around the Château.”

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PARIS: Les Vitrines de Noël

The holiday season is upon us, and that means, HOLIDAY WINDOWS! We already gave you a preview of New York City, and now here’s a look at boulevard Haussmann’s famed department stores, Printemps and Galeries Lafayette.

Printemps

First things first. If you’re still coming off of the high that was Lanvin’s collection for H&M, you’ll want to make Printemps your first stop, where Alber Elbaz designed the window displays. Noël au Château is all about luxury, featuring mannequins dripping in glamorous evening attire, surrounded by chandeliers and classical backdrops. Of course dear Alber adds his own personal touch with adorable dancing marionettes named Mister and Miss Lanvin.

Galeries Lafayette

Across the boulevard, Galeries Lafayette kind of goes the way of Barney’s New York by celebrating pop culture (albeit with Christmas still in the title and very a very Christmas-y outcome). Called Snow Chaud Noël, the windows feature various musicals set to an underlying show-biz theme. Hairspray and Mamma Mia are expressed with spirited mannequins while Soldat Rose appeals to les enfants with toys and teddy bears.

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Filed under Designer, Exhibits, Retail

In Review: Spring 12 Denim by Premiere Vision

Last week I spent 2 days at THE denim show of all denim shows, now in its 7th edition. The Spring 12 season of Denim by Premeire Vision was held at Halle Freyssinet in Paris, dubbed “Blueville”.

So, what’s new in denim? My #1 question to all the major weavers, laundries and garments & finishings companies yielded a somewhat ho-hum response. While there was some newness, there was a lot more of the same. On top of that, the topic of rising cotton costs was on everyone’s mind, and many estimated that the message won’t quite hit consumers until about 6 months from now. Candiani relayed the point best with a silent auction-like display featuring cotton wrapped in gold, as if to say how high will costs go?


Candiani’s “Cotton as Gold” Display

While Fashion Snoops’ subscribers will have total and exclusive access to interviews with Denim by Premiere Vision exhibitors including an upcoming trend report, here’s a list of my Top 10 points from the show.

1. Indigo

As we saw for Fall 11/12, indigo remains the most important expression of the Spring 12 season. Saturated indigo, green-casts, indigo coatings and high contrasts are all featured.


Vicunha


High Contrast Indigo, Tavex


Indigo Coating, Candiani


Green Cast Indigo, Bossa

2. Blends

Keeping in mind the rising cost of cotton, this season featured many cotton blends. Linen, Polyester, Tencel, Lyocell and Cupro were all common, many also adding stretch or soft hand properties which continue from last season.


Cotton/Linen Blend, Berto


Cotton/Polyester Blend, Matesa Tekstil


Cotton/Tencel/Elastane, Kipas


Organic Cotton/Recycled Cotton/Lyocell/Recycled Polyester, Denim Valley by Royo


Cotton/Viscose/Cupro/Elastane, Tavex

3. The Denim Alternatives

As we started to see last season, denim alternatives gain influence this season with the CHINO being a common extension from denim weavers. Twills become more popular.


Berto


Berto


Berto


ITV


Royo


Orta

5. In Living COLOR!

For those weavers who went into color this season, it proved to be a hit with buyers. Saturated brights and pastels were the boldest expressions, though other techniques to consider include colored wefts (as seen at Candiani) and coating on reverse yarns (at Bossa).


Royo


Vicunha


ITV


Ice Dye, Emmetre


Colored Weft, Candiani


Colored Coating on Reverse Yarns, Bossa

6. Desert Tones

Aside from the more vibrant color expressions, many weavers featured desert tones including ecru, beige, khaki, orange and brown.


ITV


Berto


Berto

7. Super Shirts

The continuation of both denim and chambray shirts means that denim weights stay on the light side – generally between 4 to 7oz. A few fresh ideas come from Lyocell applications, selvedge shirting (introduced at Bossa, sure to be a hit in the coming seasons) as well as check or plaid shirts with real indigo.


4oz Shirt, Indicott


Bossa


Chambray, Orta


Lyocell, Bossa


Selvedge Shirting, Bossa


Check with Indigo, Berto


Check with Indigo, Berto


Plaid with Indigo, Berto

8. Burnt to a Fine Crisp (Finish)

The words dry, crisp and paper-like are common expressions for a finish that takes wrinkle effects to a new level.


Arvind


Berto


Candiani


Candiani

9. I’ve Been Workin’ On The Railroad

Just when you thought workwear and heritage were a done deal, railroad stripes come up as a very popular trend.


Kipas


Sartex


Berto


Royo


Dynamo


Global Denim

10. Patched from Within

Last but not least, repaired techniques evolve into patches exposed from underneath applications.


Dynamo


Hellenic


Kuroki


Sartex

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