Tuesday, August 31, 2010

    Think Vivienne Westwood, Punks/Heavy Metal/Skinheads, and the Communist Regime: Comrade Couture

    After watching Comrade Couture at the Hong Kong International Film Festival last Friday, I immediately stopped at the nearest internet source and updated our vanillachymes twitter. The movie left me speechless about fashion and the lives of young adults in East Berlin in the 1980's. The director, Marco Wilms, was not only present at the movie screening, he also told us that he made this movie to remember the times he had, as a model in East Germany, living the life that would not have happened without the suppression of the Communist regime.

    1. Creativity: As I mentioned in the title of this entry, Vivienne Westwood is what comes to mind when I saw the clothes in Comrade Couture. It's everything from punk, rock, grunge, to amazing elaborate couture. What makes the clothes here even better? It's made of materials such as strawberry field foils, shower curtains with black and white stripes on it, and hospital bags (unused, no worries). Why? Because the Communist regime in East Germany spent all their money on the military and war weapons, there was no money left for fabrics and clothes! Designers put on shows in the streets, abandoned churches and TADA, there was a source of entertainment in a place was assumed to be just gloomy and grey.

    2. Living: In the film, Wilms interviewed many of his friends from his modeling days, his "wild" days in East Berlin. Many of them said without the times and the conditions of East Germany in the 1980's, they would not have lived the lives they had experienced. Were their lives different? Yes. But do they regret doing what they did? No. The photographers, stylists, and designers that generated the creativity in East Berlin would not have been able to done it without the situation they were in. Thanks to the Communist regime, money wasn't really a issue and they were able to do as they liked. In that period of time, they had really lived; they went to the parties, got caught by the police, and held shows that stunned the media. Their source of creativity is something that we really can't find again today.

    3. Politics: A lot of the question to Wilms after the movie screening were about politics and the Communist regime in East Germany. But Wilms took note to include that there was no grudge against the political regime. The young adults behind this "underground" fashion scene were not rebels; they were not targeting against the government or the secret police. Instead, the government was after them. And some of them fled as a result of this. However, even with leaving East Germany to the West, to the United States, they realized that their desire to be free was truly instilled in them in East Berlin. And with the fall of the Berlin Wall and the end of East Germany, the childhood home of Wilms and his friends had vanished.

    Nonetheless, this movie is a definite "must-go-to" if it's showing in theaters nearby. I was so absorbed about the whole Communist crack-down atmosphere and the wild almost-Lady-Gaga-like style in the film that I had to buy a copy of the dvd for the numerous times I'll be re-watching it! Plus, the moment I heard "extra photos" and "extra fashion show" clips, my hand automatically snatched a copy and put down the money for a dvd. I went home with dvd in hand and a heart full of content :)

    Since Jeisa's added video clips to her last two entries, let me try this out too! Here's the trailer for Comrade Couture and it's probably the best way for anyone interested to get a glimpse of movie for themselves :

    All for now,

    Friday, August 27, 2010

    ...just a little GUILTY pleasure

    Ha. That caught your attention, didn't it? Well, it sure caught mine.

    Gucci is back with a spanking new alluring and enticing scent, which is bound to make your partner's heart race just a little faster. There's definitely nothing wrong with making Gucci Guilty your latest guilty pleasure.

    Funny thing, I actually tried this scent out the other day and I have to tell you, Gucci's pour femme perfumes have  always disappointed me. Gucci Envy Me was terrible in my opinion as was the more recent, Gucci Flora. None of them ever clicked correctly with me. However, I must say, all of their men colognes have been divine. Anyways, Gucci Guilty was an absolute surprise for me. I positively adored it! The SA, who was ready to laden me with free samples if I were to buy it wasn't helping me much. Nevertheless, on my next recent trip out of the country, I will definitely  be picking up a bottle. Try this scent, you definitely will not regret it.

    The light champagne gold shade on the bottle with the ever-so-familiar interlocking G's just amps up the glamour and seductive factor of the perfume.

    Gucci Guilty contains the notes of mandarin, pink pepper, peach, lilac, geranium, amber and patchouli. [source:]

    The official commercial for 'Gucci Guilty' is directed by Frank Miller, starring Evan Rachel Wood and Chris Evans. As the trailer illustrates, the commercial was made in a style reminiscent of "Sin City" and "The Spirit." Watch the commercial below, it's bound to leave you breathless:

    With love,

    Lady Blue Shanghai

    On one of my frequent trips down to the city for some shopping, I dropped by my local Christian Dior boutique to see if anything tickled my fancy. I was greeted by a sweet SA, who began to introduce several nice items. (Technically anything in Dior is nice to me so it was really hard for me to not want anything). All of a sudden, she disappeared to the other side of the room and when she returned...lo and behold, she brought forth the most amazing bag ever.

    lady dior bag in blue sapphire
    exclusively made for the re-opening of a flagship store in Plaza 66, Shanghai, in conjunction with the World Expo 2010, Dior crafted several iconic pieces from their collection in a gorgeous shade of sapphire blue.

    A couple months ago, David Lynch released an exclusive video for Dior, appropriate named Lady Blue Shanghai. Starring Marion Cotillard, who is the face of the Lady Blue Shanghai series, the video is the third chapter of the Lady Dior Saga, following Lady Rouge.

    While I wasn't the biggest fan of the video, I must say, the shots of Shanghai were stunning, infusing the old and the modern futuristic views of the city gave life to the eerie movie. Not to mention, the glimpses of the blue famed Lady Dior bag made it all worthwhile. Watch it & tell me what you think.

    For more information about Lady Blue Shanghai & its exclusive iconic items to be sold at their Shanghai flagship store, check out:

    With much love,

    Tuesday, August 24, 2010

    The Sweater Girl as Sylvia Plath

    August 24th, 2010 (well, it's the 24th in Asia) is the official release date of American Vogue's September issue. The funny thing is, I'm halfway around the world and I bought my issue on August 20th at HMV's Causeway Bay store in Hong Kong. Haha, so I already flipped through the entire magazine on the ride home.

    I actually was looking forward to buying Teen Vogue (even though I left my teens last month *sniff) because I generally like more youthful style in the magazine, but it wasn't out yet! Nonetheless, the September issue still had numerous delightful pages.

    My favorite spread was the Sweater Girl shoot featuring Lara Stone. Photographed by Mart Alas and Marcus Piggott, Grace Coddington once again works her magic in this very vintage elegance vibe photo shoot. Lots of fitted and oversized sweaters, over the knee length skirts, and Lara's blonde hair in perfect sleek curls.

    Photo Credits: FashionGoneRogue

    I have to first say, I'm not really a Lara Stone fan. But I think I should take that back now because this really shows how Lara is a great model: she can be anything you make her be! She's edgy, and there's something about those eyebrows that make her different. What I also got from this shoot was a very Sylvia Plath-esque feeling to it. It's as if Grace Coddington had Sylvia Plath in mind when she was styling the shoot (I'm only guessing).

    Although Sylvia Plath was a poet and author and not a style icon, I could see this as very "Sylvia." Gwyneth Paltrow starred in a movie as Plath, Sylvia; but after watching bits of it on a movie channel, I turned the tv off because it just made Sylvia Plath seem like some psycho and not the amazing writer that she was. Mostly recognized for her poetry, Sylvia Plath also published one novel, The Bell Jar, which I read last summer. Yes, she's pessimistic and suicidal but she's only human. In her book, I got this feeling that she was explaining why she needed to commit suicide, due to her experiences and her despair over the future. And no offense to anyone, but isn't she actually quite reasonable at times?

    Sorry that this has turned it a extensive lesson on literature! I didn't know I'd ramble on for so long! Well, here's the end of this entry. I'll end it with one of my favorite quotes by Sylvia Plath. And really, fashionistas need to start making her iconic. Like Marilyn Monroe, Grace Kelly, and Jane Birkin! One day, maybe I'll design a bag or shirt and name it "the Sylvia."

    Haha, I'll keep dreaming.

    "From the tip of every branch, like a fat purple fig, a wonderful future beckoned and winked. One fig was a husband and a happy home and children, and another fig was a famous poet and another fig was a brilliant professor, and another fig was Ee Gee, the amazing editor, and another fig was Europe and Africa and South America, and another fig was Constantin and Socrates and Attila and a pack of other lovers with queer names and off-beat professions, and another fig was an Olympic lady crew champion, and beyond and above these figs were many more figs I couldn’t quite make out.

    I saw myself sitting in the crotch of this fig-tree, starving to death, just because I couldn’t make up my mind which of the figs I would choose. I wanted each and every one of them, but choosing one meant losing all the rest, and, as I sat there, unable to decide, the figs began to wrinkle and go black, and, one by one, they plopped to the ground at my feet."
    -Sylvia Plath in "The Bell Jar"

    Monday, August 23, 2010

    Obsession of the Day

    So like any shopaholic, I absolutely love to wander around the city and mall-hop. In fact, I've influenced my roommate to be my sidekick in action. Although, I do miss shopping with my lovely Delilah, its been far too long, love. Anyways, my roommate, who is an absolute perfumeaholic, dragged me towards the shiny perfume aisles of our local luxury department store.

    There, we fell in love with this...

    ralph lauren the big pony collection

    Designed for a new generation of men, the Big Pony Collection comprises of four separate fragrances.
    1) SPORTY-- lime & grapefruit
    2) SEDUCTIVE -- dark chocolate & musk
    3) ADVENTUROUS -- mint & ginger root
    4) STYLISH -- mandarin & kyrawood
    It is immensely difficult not to immediately fall in love with all four of these fragrances. My personal favourite has to be STYLISH but I'll gladly take them all. Buy it for your brother, boyfriend, father, whoever it may be,  it's a guaranteed swoon-worthy scent. 

    With love,

    Sunday, August 22, 2010

    prints galore!

    My mouth gaped; my jaw dropped; my heart stopped.

    Alexander McQueen -- Pre-Fall 2010 Collection
    I post this collection with a heavy heart. It's difficult to see someone with such brilliance bursting at the seams gone in just a mere moment. 
    However, I was pleased to see that Sarah Burton, who was appointed Creative Director of Alexander McQueen, had not failed to encapsulate the exceptional vision he had. 

    How magnificent is this collection? The prints, the exotic-extraterrestrial element to it all. 
    If this is what aliens wear, sign me up. 

    With love,

    Saturday, August 21, 2010

    Timeless: Kate Moss and Beverly Hills

    Hello! Delilah here posting a spread that I've just completely fell in love with. It's Kate Moss channeling a soft nostalgic Beverly Hills look in a spread for Glamour France in June 1992.The spread was photographed by Lance Straedler.

    Photo Credits: Nasty Gal Vintage Blog

    It's sooo pretty. The soft palette of baby blue, pink, and orange. The vintage Beverly Hills atmosphere. Youthful (note the teddy bear!) and playful (in the dinner with her Coke float) Kate Moss with her messy hair in princess-y knee length party dresses. What's there to not love about this shoot? Here come by favorite picture in the spread...

    What does this remind you of? For me, it's very Miss Dior Cherie. No? Except the Miss Dior Cherie ad is more dreamy and it's set in Paris. But there's something special about Kate and her very baroque dress. It's as if she plucked the curtains off Versailles and turned it into the cutest party dress ever. And decided to go to a party with pink balloons that matched her dress. Isn't that absolutely dreamy?

    Ah, just lovely. :)
    All for now, Delilah

    Friday, August 20, 2010

    pre-fall picks!

    Jeisa here! [after what seems like a year and a half] Things have been pretty busy, much busier than I would have ever expected. Anyways, with a new layout and a fresh new semester underway, I decided it would be a good time to post about pre-fall fashion! 

    Fall remains as my favorite season. Not only is it where my birthday month happens to fall into, I love the perfect  cool weather, gorgeous golden brown leaves littered across the pavement and you get the best of both worlds when it comes to fashion and style, throwing on summer cut-offs, light scarf and a blazer and you're good to go.

    Photo Credit:

    It was so difficult picking a few key pieces that I liked because I basically wanted each and every piece. John Galliano does it again; incorporating one of the key trends this fall: military aviator with pure 1930s chic. I feel like I've been whipped back into time and falling in love with history's best.


    Having been a big fan of YSL shoes and bags, I was pleased to see that their collection impressed me just as equally. The Upper-East-Side chic factor to the clothes is enough to make you swoon. Positively timeless and classic.


    One of my favorite collections by far. Everything that the name Valentino encompasses and more. Feminine, chic and pure iconic beauty. The take on the classic red Valentino dresses were fresh and modern, yet the other pieces in the collection still retained the same classic Valentino touch that we've all grown to love.


    Leave it to Burberry Prorsum to come up with a collection that's uber-stylish yet wearable. The military-esque theme returns in this collection as well but in a more vulnerable and softer manner. This truly is a collection that every woman needs in her closet this fall.


    Karl Lagerfeld is a genius. [as usual] I'm pretty sure Delilah is nodding in crazy agreement over this (she is pretty much Karl Lagerfeld's biggest fan). I'll say it over and over again: he can do no wrong. Oriental infusion with classic Chanel. What more could you really ask for? Intricately embroided fabrics, flowing black chiffon and statement pieces. Pure love.  

    That's it from me for now! Leave a comment and tell me which Pre-Fall collection you're rooting for.

    With love,

    VanillaChymes © 2010