Friday, 30 October 2009

And the finalists are: Spurr!

English-born Simon Spurr designs menswear that women want to see their boyfriends in and then steal from their wardrobe or straight off their back for the ultimate "boyfriend look"! That's how I see it anyway because as soon as I looked at Spurr's SS10 collection I caught myself making a mental shopping list: that pink suit, the denim get the idea. With a background working alongside the biggest names in menswear (Hedi Slimane for Yves Saint Laurent, Calvin Klein and Ralph Lauren) Simon set up his own label in New York in 2006 and injected the city with some seriously modern, Saville Row-worthy tailoring. Now, If only every gentleman could wear a pink flower on his jacket's lapel...

Here's his When, What and Who.


When I first heard that I was a nominee, I calmed the raised hairs on the back of my neck and took my dog for a long walk to let it all set in. Then I started calling my family and friends. To be honest, I still did not realize the magnitude of the nomination.


Obviously I will dress up from my usual working uniform of jeans and a white T-shirt. I will most likely wear a SPURR suit and shirt (no tie), maybe with a flower in the lapel which echoes the SPURR look for Spring 2010.

I will probably take 2 people to the event. Firstly, my wife Justine who has personally been my rock throughout the years and who has patiently kept believing in me and supporting me. And secondly, my business partner Judd Nydes without whom this dream would not have been possible.


The list of CFDA members is so impressive that I will honestly be pleased to just be there as a new member of the CFDA and as a nominee for the award. To spend a little more time speaking with Anna Wintour and Diane Von Furstenberg will be the highlight for me. But to see Ralph Lauren and Calvin Klein again after having worked for them would be such an honor. Ultimately without the support of all the members I would not be there so everyone will be special in their own right.

Cheers Simon!

Images by Spurr.

BLOG BLESS AMERICA: V is for Vodianova!

NOT your average couture shoot; no crinolines, no parasols and no ubiquitous Parisian scene.

Images by Hedi Slimane for V Magazine. Issue 62 hits newstands on Nov. 3rd.

I HEART: Reason The World needs Daphne No 1,545,322...

N O W O R D S ! ! !

Wednesday, 28 October 2009

GIRLS ON BIKES: So good it hurts!

Please Mr. Schuman, S T O P ! I simply can't get a bike right now and you taking gorgeous pictures of pretty ladies on cute bikes just doesn't help with the situation. Because, we do have a s i t u a t i o n. And it wont be resolved until, at least, next spring. So, I hope we can reach a compromise till then, yes?

PS: You still rock.

Image by The Sartorialist.

I HEART: A summer of clogs!

So, Uncle Karl says 'clogs'. He also said 'frolic in the hay, pretty young things' but I don't see anyone panicking about that. Perhaps there's no reason to. Or perhaps, and I think I may be on to something here, his first commandment landed with such a heavy thud that no one paid attention to the latter. Either way, we all need to calm down and dissect the real meaning of this, or in magazine speak 'how to make it work'.

I don't know about you but I'm thinking there's two ways to do this and both are extreme (I agree with LibertyLondonGirl, kitten heel clogs? Nein, danke Uncle); either go all out cuckoo Victor & Rolf circa AW07 or easy cool like it's the Seventies and you're starring in a Woody Allen movie. If you choose a, try to erase from your conscience all the anger at the Dutch duo for putting their models through such agony for 'show' (carrying industrial size lights and speakers on their backs and heads? Try the latest shoes to make it down the catwalk and then weep!).

If, on the other hand, you opt for the comfort of b, go all the way; high-waist washed jeans, white shirt, kooky Diane Keaton glasses. I saw these two at the Clark's press day last week and exclaimed to the lovely PR girl (much to her dismay) that they look great, so '70s. "Yes", she considered aloud, "I think they may have been too literal with their archives!" Point made.

Images by and moi!

And the finalists are: Gary Graham!

To me, the inclusion of Gary Graham's name on the final shortlist encapsulates all that is right and important about an industry event like the CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund. I am more than certain that Mr. Graham's label has built a loyal following in the 10 years of its existence and that they, and lucky passers-by, will now be able to visit his new Tribeca store for a close-up of his beautiful collection but little ignoramus me hadn't heard of it until I saw his name on the finalists list. Precisely this, introducing designers to a wider audience whilst supporting young names, is why the Fund is so vital, especially now.

So, I googled and clicked and viewed and loved both his current autumn-winter collection, there's a perfect red dress, a great landscape print and those silk bodysuits/leggings, and the SS10 he presented last month (doesn't it feel longer?). Gary Graham is clearly into Victoriana in all its romantic-worn-in-petticoats glory, but there's a freshness and lightness about his collection that reveals a designer of both experience and expertise, and what could be more important than that?

Here's his When, What and Who!


I was helping to set up for our sample sale that we were having in our new space when I found out. I then took the j train to Bushwick to buy a new dryer for our studio.


I will probably wear this black suit I found a couple years ago in New Jersey.


Diane Von Furstenberg.

All the best Gary!
UPDATE: Gary just informed me that the always fantastic Shop at Bluebird stocks his label here in London so do check it out!

Images by Gary Graham and

Tuesday, 27 October 2009

BLOG BLESS: Steve McCurry's world.

For when you're feeling drained or bored, uninspired or ill; do yourself a favour and check out Steve McCurry's blog. It's food for the soul and the brain and your spirits. Simply unrivaled.

Images by Steve McCurry.

I HEART: An ode to Regent's Park.

I'm back, I'm here, I'm alive and well. A week without posting? Unacceptable, I know, and sure, I was ill and then completely lost my voice for a few days which was interesting to say the least. I think I scared the guy at the other end of the phone in RD Franks when I rang to check that the latest issue of the Acne Paper had arrived (how good is it people?), I overdosed on Soothers, provided constant entertainment for my boyfriend, started reading Huckleberry Finn on my new i-pod Touch (b'day pressie that's forever attached to my hand now) and after the 4th day panicked that I may not speak again. OK, I get it; inability to speak does not equal inability to type so here it goes; I'm lazy. I went for walks in Regent's Park and took an insane number of pictures of leaves (not since Nikko, Japan have I been so enthralled by the colour of trees); leaves on the ground, leaves on trees, brown leaves, green leaves (not many of those left!), red and yellow leaves. I have so much to write about I don't know where to start so excuse any sudden bombardment of posts but then again, don't be surprised if the next one comes a week later with pics of squirrels or bare trees. It's autumn. It's pretty out there.

Images by me (can't you tell?!)

Tuesday, 20 October 2009

I HEART: The Imaginarium of Acne Paper.

Speaking of my favourite people and following last Friday's Acne party at the Christ Church in Spitafields, yes, an actual church with altar, Mass schedule, high ceilings and all, I am now convinced that the lovely people at Acne have secretly scouted old London for the most incredible and whimsical venues to put a party or two on. Now, when I read "a magical party of mystery and marvels" on the invite, I conjure up dream sequences that would leave Terry Gilliam dumbstruck!

It was so much fun! The tuxedo-clad greeters holding crystal-encrusted Acne Paper umbrellas were fun, the space inside was astonishing, the gospel singer that surprised us all was great and oh, there were three men on stilts and a girl wearing a white rat on her head! Admittedly, Acne had nothing to do with the later but when your boyfriend casually remarks, while you're sipping your elderflower vodka, that "there's a girl with a rat on her head behind you", you know you're at a good party! Plus, the lovely Jonny Johansson (in his 'old man' coat because he turned 40 a few days ago and he can, his words) and Anthony Kendal (keeping an eye on where Jonny is at all times by simply towering above the crowd) were fun to chat to, as always. I'm off to get my copy of the Paper before it sells out again.

Images by Acne.

BLOG BLESS: The fantastic Ms Phillips!

Beware; after seeing Wes Anderson's The Fantastic Mr. Fox last week, I'm in the, annoying I'll admit, habit of calling everyone Fantastic, see last post. OK, not everyone, only those who I feel deserve it and I don't think there's anybody that deserves it more than Arianne Phillips. Oh, and I'm still debating whether I can carry a corduroy suit like Foxy. This remains to be seen but I'm still gleaming from interviewing Ms Phillips for Grazia Daily on working alongside The Fantastic Mr. Ford (I'll stop soon, I promise!) on his directorial debut, A Single Man. And yes, there's a bit about some cool kid going by the name of Madonna. And no, since I'm still ecstatic about getting a quote from My Only God Bruce Weber back in April, the gleaming will not go away any time soon!

And the finalists are: House of Waris!

If Waris Ahluwalia wasn't already a bona fide member of Wes Anderson's troupe (Life Aquatic, The Darjeeling Limited) I imagine Wes would have to make a movie about him; The Fantastic Mr. Waris, perhaps?

Our protagonist moved with his family from Amritsar, Punjab to Brooklyn, NY at the age of 5. He thought of becoming a doctor, a lawyer, risked one advertising interview, attempted to make a music magazine, got involved with a friend's NGO for increasing HIV/ AIDS awareness in South Asia and found himself back in New York, immersed in the art life of the city. He then has a guy in New York make some jewellery for him, escapes the cold of the city for LA, helps a friend set-up a restaurant and one day, wanders into ultra-luxe boutique Maxfield's where the owners spot his rings, immediately place an order, they sell out and House of Waris is born. I hope you're paying attention, Mr Anderson!

Here's his When, What and Who plus a wonderful behind-the-scenes into the making of his exquisite, romantic collection in India. The final image alone takes your breath away.


I was sitting in my workshop working on a pair of earrings in Jaipur, India when I first heard the news. I smiled and continued to work on the earrings.



I don't plan so far ahead but I imagine I'll wear a suit. Some things are better left as a surprise- even for me.


The Fashion Fund panelists.

Images by House of Waris and video by

Friday, 16 October 2009

Sartorialisms: Un petit-déjeuner très chic!

I don't know if she's actually there for breakfast or not and franfly, I don't care. I'd like to believe that she woke up in her beautiful pyjama bottoms, threw on a perfectly cut blazer and her converse and went out for a cafe au lait or two! Why not? Ça c'est Paris, after all!
These are the shots that make The Sart so special!

Images by The Sartorialist.

Tuesday, 13 October 2009

And the finalists are: Alabama Chanin!

If there had to be one poster child for 'slow' design, sustainability and community support in the world of fashion surely Alabama Chanin would be it. The proof is in the signature that ties each hand-crafted, limited-edition item to the artisan who made it. Does it get more personal than that? Based in Florence, Alabama the label is commited to producing high quality products, "from farmer to fiber to artisan to home, grown-to-sewn in the USA".

Behind it all, is Natalie Chanin as the owner and designer of Alabama Chanin (and the original Project Alabama). I caught up with Natalie just after the SS10 presentation in New York and here is her When, What and Who!


I was sitting in the studio when I got the call that Alabama Chanin had been nominated. Much like today, I was trying to work my way through emails and other business demands - a very mundane day in the "fashion fabulous world!" Steven Kolb, from CFDA, called me and I could really say nothing. Not very typical of me the Southern storyteller...I just sat here in silence. But, I am very happy and honored to be included with such a great group and to have the support of my industry. Means a lot...


Seems that we have a lot of big nights ahead of us before the final gala...Of course, I will be wearing Alabama Chanin and I plan to bring a secret date! (Smile)


I am most excited to meet all of the other finalists and looking forward to getting to know them all!

All the best Natalie!

I HEART: Ripley kicks some butt!

Sure, there will always be Audrey in that dress and those pearls and certainly, there's Uma in her white shirt and bob but really, for this little girl there's only one; Ripley in her white vest kicking some alien butt! Can you believe it was first released 30 years ago?

Friday, 9 October 2009

BLOG BLESS: The genius of Mr. Johansson.

The morning after Acne's SS10 London presentation at the Curve Gallery in the Barbican, I skipped and hopped over to the Swedish label's studio to interview their Creative Director, Jonny Johansson for Ponystep - you can read the story here. Now, I am a huge Acne fan and having spoken with Jonny before for a different story, I knew he has some very interesting ideas about fashion and design so I was really looking forward to a good, Swedish-oddness-infused chat and I certainly wasn't disappointed. Even the gazillion-step climb in high heels to their top floor studio didn't take away from the fun of it all! Oh, and apologies if I left with their copy of Neil Young's 'Harvest Moon' - in retrospect it may not have been intended as a gift so sorry, Anthony!

As it usually happens, the interview couldn't appear in full on Ponystep so I really wanted to include this quote from Jonny here, it still makes me laugh!

I put to him that 'genius' is another word many often resolve to in order to describe Jonny Johansson. Embarrassing for somebody so low-key? “You know", he retorts, "‘embarrassed’ in Swedish is 'generad', which sounds almost like genius!” And there you have it, pure genius!
You really have to check-out the spike heels in these shoes the moment they hit stores next year, they are extraordinary!
This is the first women's Pop line Jonny and his team have created and it's just full of must-have-in-my-wardrobe-at-all-times pieces; from the tees to the shirt jumpsuits, the suede patches on jeans and jackets and, oh, those ponyskin shoes!!!

Images by Ponystep and Acne.

Wednesday, 7 October 2009

CFDA/Vogue Fund: And the finalists are...

Of course the ten finalists for the 2009 CFDA / Vogue Fashion Fund were announced eons ago (actually, it was July!) so with the Big Event itself coming up soon, Nov. 16th, I managed to speak with most of the designers (NY fashion week, a ton of buying appointments, a quick hop to Paris and oh, a collection to produce somehow got in the way!) and find out the big WHEN, WHAT and WHOs for each one of them.

This year's ten finalists are: Alabama Chanin, Esquivel Shoes, Gary Graham, House of Waris, Monique Pean, Ohne Titel, Patrik Ervell, Sophie Theallet, Spurr and Wayne. A diverse group indeed with designers that according to Mme Wintour "are building healthy independent businesses in challenging times." I will be posting each profile every couple of days (or so), so please do come back for more. Like you wouldn't!!!

Sartorialisms: Tommy goes for details...

This space may start to look like a Tommy Ton fest but hey, nothing wrong with that, right? I do love it when photographers zoom into those little details that make an outfit special; a roll of a sleeve, a small brooch, textures clashing. His Highness The Sart is, of course, the master of this but I really like what Tommy Ton has been doing over at this season (he's had some big brogues to fill!), especially when he focuses on such details. After all, the guy can shoot a shoe like none other!
The stripes, the print, the fringing, the leather and the denim!
A small roll of the hem et voila!
Pile it on, pile it on! This reminds me of this.
You can feel the softness of the silk and I just love that tan leather and the clasp...

BLOG BLESS: Hipsters of the Universe!

Forget Bambi. Forget Minnie and all other saccharine Disney characters that seem to have cast their spell over fashion lately (sorry cute, lovable little buddies!) - He-Man and his gang are in town! OK, so the fake, 80's-cartoon-worthy voice-over doesn't quite work but the makeover that Adrian Riemann gave the Masters of the Universe characters certainly does! Oh, and hipster is Adrian's chosen word, not mine, but what else to call He-Man in his Dior Homme jacket and April 77 jeans? Skeletor (oh, childhood nicknames, how I missed you!) goes for Cheap Monday and YSL high-tops whereas Evil-Lyn is in Zara and American Apparel leggings and She-Ra in H&M and vintage shoes. Now, repeat after me, "I have the power!"

Illustrations by Adrian Riemann.

Tuesday, 6 October 2009

GIRLS ON BIKES: The one to end all searches...

Surely it doesn't get better than this?!

Image by Tommy Ton for

Monday, 5 October 2009

Sartorialisms: Atonement-chic.

As soon as I saw this girl, with her green silk dress and red lips, one single image got stuck in my head: Keira Knightley in Atonement, in what's known in my household as 'that dress'! So pretty.

Image by Garance.

BLOG BLESS: Grace gives hope!

Grazia's intrepid Melanie Rickey simply made my day this morning with her Scoop story from Paris and her chat with need-I-say-it-again-the-one-and-only Grace Coddington.

So, treat this as an update on my previous post on 7L's sold-out and much-in-demand title, Grace, or as Christmas/Hanukkah/any other celebration of your choice and your birthday rolled in one, or just another silly little piece of information - in which case, what are you doing here? - but here it goes, in Ms Rickey's words:

"Before we leave her, Grazia wants to know if her brilliant book Grace: Thirty Years of Fashion at Vogue will be re-published due to popular demand? The fashion editor smiles a discreet smile “I’m seeing Karl [Lagerfeld – publisher of her book] in the morning and I'm going to pin him down”.

And, right about now, you're allowed to scream!!!

Image by GraziaDaily.

Friday, 2 October 2009

I HEART: and Erin Hearts Bambi!

Continuing with the adorable animal/jungle theme that seems to have taken over this blog (Kane's croc not adorable enough for you?) and casting our minds back to the pre-historic times of New York Fashion Week, the equally charming and dreamy Erin Fetherston recalled memories of a childhood trip to Japan, and specifically Nara, where a thousand, or so, deer roam free in its public park, among the cherry trees. With Erin's gold and white sequined spots and Stella's Bambi-in-the-woods Ryan McGinley campaign, are we looking at next season's new icon?

Images by Stella McCartney and