Friday, 27 February 2009

Hana Soukupova in Thea Porter

It's rare to find out what happens to something you loved that came up to auction, which is why I was so surprised when I spied Hana Soukupova last week. I was at Vladimir Restoin-Roitfeld's (Carine's son) opening at Collective Hardware, my boyfriend's space, chatting with friends when I saw her flit by. Overall, all of the many models there were dressed incredibly boringly but she looked like a gorgeous bird of paradise in her eary '70s Thea Porter couture caftan. It was part of the Kerry Taylor Antiques Passion for Fashion auction in early December and I had fallen absolutely in love with it. I knew it would go for more than I could afford, which definitely saddened me as Thea Porter is the only one of the designers that I really love that I have yet to collect a single piece from- rather sad as I would like to write my thesis on her. The navy chiffon patchwork caftan ended up selling for £1,600, and though Hana Soukupova isn't one of my favourite models I thought she looked beautiful in it. It is always nice to see someone wearing beautiful vintage, instead of just putting it away never to be enjoyed again.

I wish I could find out what happened to my favourite piece from the auction, a Thea Porter dress and matching cape. It was pretty much the dress of my dreams, and at the last minute I decided to bid but my registration did not go through in time. It only ended up going for £150, which is basically the price of a dress or two at Topshop! Someday I will find it as it was the most gorgeous Medieval-esque gown.

Monday, 23 February 2009

Gorgeous! Nicholas Kirkwood for Louise Gray

Nicholas Kirkwood appears to be able to do no wrong- these shoes he did for Louise Gray are absolutely stunning. The colours, the fabric, the piping and buckle equal perfection.

Academy Awards 2009

Being a bit of an award ceremony obsessive, I was really disappointed with the Academy Awards last night. It was by far the most boring of all of the ceremonies this season, and I absolutely hated the changes they made- having past winners come on to talk about the nominees might have seemed a cute idea, but it took to long and it prevented viewers from really seeing enough clips of the nominated movies. I'm glad, at least, that I had good friends, food and drinks around me to take the edge off my annoyance and boredom with the whole event. Delicious gluten and dairy free red velvet cupcakes were a good distraction when the worst and most pointless musical number in years was on- Beyonce, Mamma Mia and High School Musical? Really?

Most of the dresses were just as boring as the ceremony- it was really rather a wash out.

My absolute favourite dress from the night- Christian Dior Fall 2008 couture. I posted this dress before at the time of the show, and I still think it is so gorgeous.

Another gown from the Christian Dior Fall 2008 couture collection- this one was heavily modified, but I love the modifications that were made. It looked awkward around her chest and she is maybe a little old for it, but this celadon tulle confection is just about the prettiest dress I can think of. I love that she just kind of went for it- when ever else are you going to be able to wear a gown like this (other than for a wedding)?

The amount of work that must have gone into Marisa Tomei's Atelier Versace Fall 2008 gown is incredible. Usually I am not a fan of sculptural origami-esque pleats but this is so soft and enchanting that I can't help but love it.

This colour might not be for everyone, but it's one of my favourites- a bright pink with just a touch of lilac. Combine that with gorgeous pleating and just enough beading and Natalie Portman's Rodarte gown is perfect (her make up is not though).

Tina Fey looks her best ever here- this Zac Posen gown is flawless.

I just love them both which is why I've included them- I wish she was still acting! Eternally youthful, Phoebe Cates looks stunning in this red Poiret-esque gown.

This was my boyfriend's favourite dress of the evening, and I do have to admit that she looks beautiful. Anne Hathaway's Armani Privé Spring 2009 gown fitted her gorgeously and she seemed to glide down the red carpet in it. So much better than that Valentino monstrosity of 2007.

I can't post without talking about Madonna- she looks absolutely stunning at the Vanity Fair party. Her hair is a perfect shade of blonde, her face looks great, her arms are amazing (minus the crazy vein), and her dress is beautiful- it's Christian Dior spring 2009 and the combination of the sequins and sheer suits her perfectly.

Sunday, 22 February 2009

Perfect Style at the Montblanc Charity Gala

Life has been so crazy this past week that I have barely been able to post, and especially not in the depth that I've wanted to. I'm pretty much taking the day off from anything today (relaxing from the insanity that is NYFW) and just baking some cupcakes for the Oscars tomorrow night, but I thought I would post these two gorgeous, and very different, outfits. Both of these were worn to the Montblanc "Signature for Good" Charity Gala last night and they couldn't be more different, yet each star looks utterly beautiful, comfortable and happy in their dresses.

Lucy Liu is wearing a Giambattista Valli Fall 2008 sheath dress with woolen cape. The addition of the woolen cape totally changes this from being a rather boring white dress to one that is totally striking. The white sets off her skin and black hair perfectly, and the nude heels add height without distracting from the dress.

Dita Von Teese is wearing a Christian Lacroix Fall 2008 Couture long draped flesh silk chiffon gown with a pink ombre train, a matching clutch and a copper bow. The dresss originally had poet sleeves, which I loved but the spaghetti straps suit Dita much more. I love the romance and drama of Lacroix's designs, and they aren't often enough seen on the red carpet so I'm always happy to see her in them as she wears them so well.

All photos from Red Carpet Fashion Awards.

Wednesday, 18 February 2009

Rodarte's Spellbinding Fall 2009 Collection

I cannot get over how gorgeous the Rodarte show was- just so insanely beautiful, especially after all the incredible dullness of most of the shows. So much has already been said about this collection that I feel there is not much I can say, except that I would do anything (anything!) if I could have one of their dresses especially one of the ones with the shot of metallic green towards the end of the show.

Tuesday, 17 February 2009

More faded glitter...

I've been meaning to post some of the colour photos from this shoot for, oh, around 8 months. I've just been so overwhelmed with work that the last thing I want to do when I get home is more photoshop, even if it just dedusting and colour correcting. Hopefully this will change soon. Here are two from the shoot that I had to finish this week for a magazine- I'll finish the rest once fashion week is over.

All photos Copyright © 2008 Laura Helms

Monday, 16 February 2009

Preen: Fall 2009

Preen have long been one of my absolute favourite designers- I have several of their dresses that I wear constantly, and if I could get my hands on some of the designs in their Fall 2009 collection they would become instant favourites. I love the way they make immaculately cut sexy bodycon dresses that aren't tarty at all- their lines are fluid and mold the body into perfection.
How hot is this? I love long-sleeved tight minidresses and this one is such a great example of this style- the mesh panels are sexy without being forced.

A perfect little cocktail dress.

My favourite of the collection- I adore blue lame and have been wanting something with it since Staerk's S/S 09 collection.


I almost bought a blouse of theirs in lace with panels across the chest similar to this one two years ago, and it is definitely a major regret for me- I've thought about it often and stalked Ebay looking for it with no luck. This isn't quite as amazing, but I love it combined with the full skirt.

I would seriously die for this coat- my favourite piece so far this fashion week.

The rainbow colours are so pretty! All of my pieces from Preen are such strong colours, it's nice to see them use something a bit more muted. I will be looking out for this piece.

So far I've found fashion week to be dull, dull and boring- nothing has really stood out as anything remarkable. I love and want several pieces from Staerk and Preen, but those are both labels that I wear often and am pretty much guarenteed to love. I feel like I am waiting to be blown away and I have a feeling I won't be- I was talking to good friends who are stylists and some people who work for Vogue and they all shared my feelings. I understand that many designers are trying to be more commercial due to the economy but there doesn't seem to be any inspiration, and there aren't really any new interesting styles- I've seen at least 7 leather bustier dresses, which I also remember from the spring shows. Maybe I'm just wishing for too much...

Saturday, 14 February 2009

Gemma Booth's Eccentrically Adorable Photos

Love this interview with Gemma Booth, a fashion photographer who's quirky photoshoots always make me smile. She has a super cute blog, GemBlog, which she updates with fun new work. You can also find her photos on her website. Gemma seems like she would be great fun to work with.

Jill Sander Spring 2009

Natasha Poly + Willy Vanderperre + fringed dresses = Insane beauty. Click to open them larger- just gorgeous.

Stærk & Victor Glemaud Fall 2009: Gloomy Elegance (and cute boys!)

My good friends Camilla Stærk and Victor Glemaud showed their collections together yesterday. I've written about her several times before as I adore the hard edged glamour of her designs, and Victor makes perfect clothes for hot boys (his models were seriously the most perfect group of boys I've seen in a long time). Camilla's Fall 2009 collection was seriously so beautiful- even tighter and more elegant then ever before. The bustier above was my favourite, though I was talking to my friend who does the production who said it was next to impossible to make- I hope they produce it!The lights were way too bright at the presentation, which made it hard to look at the clothes for too long- I understand what they were going for in blasting the space with light, bleaching it out, but it was honestly too much. Otherwise it was the perfect presentation and I am so proud of them both!

This leather trench was so beautifully cut with truly wonderful details- Camilla's trademark knots on the cuffs and belt added a little fun to an already perfect piece.

My best friend's favourite was this lace and leather vest, and I do have to admit that it is pretty amazing- the perfect blend of masculine and feminine.

I have a thing for long black Gothic dresses so I'll have to make sure I get this one. Shinji Nakaba made the incredible aluminium broaches- how insane it that broach? The tiny flowers were fabricated with such skill and beauty.

My favourite skirt and probably the only piece I've seen at any show thus far that I absolutely must have. You can't see it in this photo but there are the most perfect little pleats above the pockets and a cute little buckle in the back. I've been looking for a great leather skirt for awhile and this go perfectly with all of my clothes.

Another amazing broach on another staple of my closet, a long Gothy black skirt.The liquid jersey falls gorgeously and is just so, so, so elegant.

United Bamboo Fall 2009: Innocence with a Twist

Missed the United Bamboo show this morning- way way too hungover to make it so early in the morning. Looking through the pictures it's all cute, but I wouldn't really wear any of it. Too cute, too prim. The only look that stuck out to me was this one- love the seventies colours and silhouette, though I could do without the ruffles. The whole palette of the collection was right up my alley- grays, ochre, mustard- the cuts are just too shapeless for me personally, but I can definitely see everything totally working on a certain type of girl.

Thursday, 12 February 2009

Valentina, the Glamorous

Sorry for the lack of updates- it's fashion week here so everything is a little crazy at the moment. I'm going to a few friend's shows today and tomorrow, which shall be fun, but I went to the most amazing opening last night. It was at the Museum of the City of New York about Valentina, the most famous American woman couturier. Entitled Valentina: American Couture and the Cult of Celebrity it was a completely gorgeous retrospective of her work from the '30s through the early '60s. Her story is rather remarkable, the true American dream- she came to New York as a young immigrant from Russia and started working from the bottom up, reinventing herself into a glamorous style icon who dressed all of the stars of the day. The show had probably the largest amount of pieces I have seen in a fashion show in a long time and it was quite intoxicating being surrounded by such gorgeous pieces. On display were dresses of hers worn by such luminaries as Greta Garbo, Lillian Gish and society queen Millicent Rogers along with costumes she designed for many movies. I forgot to bring my camera (it was really too busy to take any photos anyway), but I plan on going back to spend more time looking at the dresses without the opening party crowds. I can't wait to pick up the book that Kohle Yohannan, the curator, wrote as a companion piece- he did such a wonderful job on the show that I'm sure the book will be fantastic as well, especially if it includes all of the gorgeous studio photographs of her- she was so intelligent about how she shaped her image that it is very interesting to see them all together.

Monday, 9 February 2009

Madonna in Rio

My love for Madonna is well-known - my love for her is so deep that she can do no wrong in my eyes. Her new 46 page spread in W is no different. I haven't gotten my own copy of it yet, but in every photo I have seen from it she looks absolutely amazing. While I understand the criticisms about her current body and some of the work she has had done to her face, I can't help but think she looks beautiful and that her body is pretty much the ultimate for me. The vision of her toned and lithe limbs keeps me going during my harer workouts, especially since she is twice my age and looks that good. This Steven Klein editorial is much more appealing to me than her last one with him, Madonna Unbound, from 2003. The top photo is my favourite but I love all of them. I've always wanted to bleach my hair and style it in more of Hitchcock heroine style and this editorial is just intensifying this desire.

This photo makes it rather obvious what Madonna found so intriguing about her new man- he's definitely attractive, and she always did love Latinos.

If you're in London at next month you should definitely check out this exhibit of her clothes and stage costumes.

Simply Madonna is at the Old Truman Brewery, London E1, from February 21 to March 31

I wish I could go!

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