Favorites from Fashion Month

September began with New York Fashion Week and the editors, buyers and bloggers ended the Spring 2014 preview in Paris. I, however, finally skimmed the runway stills from the comfort of my home, to determine my favorite looks and trends for Spring. As usual, I’ll be searching for interesting textures and prints in modern and architectural shapes. Black & White, Monochrome, Mixed Prints and Cutouts are my top picks for Spring 2014’s trends.

Black & White

Jenni Kayne, NYFW

Juan Carlos Obando, NYFW

Derek Lam, NYFW

TSE, NYFW

Kate Spade, NYFW

Zadig & Voltaire, PFW

Pedro Lourenço, PFW

Talbot Runhof, PFW

Monochrome

BCBG Max Azria, NYFW

Vionnet, PFW

Peter Som, NYFW

Robert Rodriguez, NYFW

Stella McCartney, NYFW

BCBG Max Azria, NYFW

Kaufmanfranco, NYFW

Updated Tweeds

Talbot Runhof, PFW

Peter Pilotto, LFW

Mixed Prints

Paule Ka, NYFW

Clover Canyon, NYFW

Whit, NYFW

Paule Ka, NYFW

Clover Canyon, NYFW

Milly, NYFW

Mara Hoffman, NYFW

Aquilando.Rimondi, MFW

Mary Katrantzou, LFW

Clover Canyon, NYFW

Lela Rose, NYFW

Window Pane Cutouts

Sass & Bide, NYFW

J. Mendel, NYFW

[Images are from Style.com]

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Changes

In my opinion, this week has been one of the coldest weeks of the summer season. As I stepped out of my apartment wearing a bright orange sundress, it was clear that I didn’t quite get the memo.  So, to get into the mood for Fall, I’ve decided to post my favorite runway looks and trends for cloudy days and strong breezes.

Black & White

viktor & rolf

Viktor and Rolf

Tia Cibani

Tia Cibani

Mary Katrantzou

Mary Katrantzou

Laurel

Laurel

Prabal Gurung

Prabal Gurung

Narciso Rodriguez

Narciso Rodriguez

I can’t get enough black and white. It seems to be my favorite color combination season after season, especially in dresses.

Crazy Prints

Temperley LondonTemperley London

Tsumori Chisato

Tsumori Chisato

Rena Lange 2

Rena Lange

Matthew Williamson

Matthew Williamson

Peter Pilotto

Peter Pilotto

Though this is not a new trend, it is one that resonates with me, perhaps because of my heritage and love for geometric shapes. This season, I’ll look for dresses or separates with eye-catching prints, and combine them with simple accents and accessories. Also, I haven’t paid much attention to Peter Pilotto before, but this London-based design team’s work is incredible!

Prep and Propper

Misha Nonoo

Misha Nonoo

3.1 phillip lim

3.1 Phillip Lim

Rena Lange

Rena Lange

Perhaps my uniform days never fully left me.

Modern and Sleek

See by Chloe

See by Chloe2

Both, See by Chloe

Richard Nicoll

Richard Nicoll

Rena Lange 3

Rena Lange

I find that as I build my “working woman” wardrobe, I’m attracted to pieces that look timeless, effortless and svelte. I think the apparent ease in the looks above is deceiving, however, since it takes some restraint to dress like a minimalist.

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Repeat After Me

Though I work in management consulting, I’ve always had a great interest in fashion. The unfortunate news is that I don’t always have friends around me to talk about our favorite designers and current industry events. One day I was chatting with a friend via Skype and wanted to talk about the Rodarte girls. Sadly, I stumbled, “Is it Ro-dart-ay or Road-art”? Aghh!

Last year I posted a handy pronunciation guide to help people like me pronounce the names that we don’t say out loud on a regular basis. I found that guide again and wanted to share it with my readers. Hopefully you’ll have better luck than I did!

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[The following guide is from Glamour.com]

Abaete: Ah-bye-ah-tay
Andrew Gn: Andrew Jen
Anna Sui: Anna Swee
Ann Demeulemeester: Ann De-mule-eh-meester
Badgley Mischka: Badge-lee Meesh-kah
Balenciaga: Bah-len-see-aga
Balmain: Bahl-mahhhhn (IMPORTANT NOTE ON FRENCH WORDS: LET YOURSELF TRAIL OFF AT THE END, SO YOUR MOUTH IS IN A ROUND SHAPE AND YOU DON’T QUITE GET TO THE “N”; APPLICABLE IN “LANVIN” AS WELL)
Behnaz Sarafpour: Beh-nozz Sa-rah-fur
Bottega Veneta: Bow-tay-guh Vah-netta
Christian Lacroix: Christian Luh-qua
Comme des Garcons: Comb-day-gar-sewn
Dries Van Noten: Drees Van Know-ten
Gareth Pugh: Gareth Pew
Giambattista Valli: Gee-am-bah-tease-ta Valley
Gianfranco Ferre: Gee-ahn-franco Feh-ray
Givenchy: Jee-von-shee
Hermes: Er-mez
Hussein Chalayan: Hoo-sane Sha-lion
Issey Miyake: Iss-ee Mee-yah-key
Jean Paul Gaultier: Zhon Paul Go-tee-ay
Junya Watanabe: June-yah Wot-uh-nah-bee
Lanvin: Lahn-vahhhh…n
Louis Vuitton: Louie Vwee-tahhhhh…n (AGAIN, TRAIL OFF AT THE END WITH THE “N”)
Maison Martin Margiela: May-sohhhh…n Martin Mar-jhell-ah
Marchesa: Mar-kay-sah
Miu Miu: Myoo Myoo
Monique Lhuillier: Monique Loo-lee-ay
Moschino: Mos-key-no
Olivier Theyskens: Oh-liv-ee-ay Tay-skins
Proenza Schouler: Pro-en-zuh Skool-er
Rochas: Row-shah
Rodarte: Row-dar-tay
Sonia Rykiel: Sewn-ya Ree-key-el
Thakoon: Tuh-koon
Versace: Vur-sah-chee
Yigal Azrouel: Yee-goll Az-roo-el
Yohji Yamamoto: Yo-gee Yom-ah-mow-toe
Yves Saint Laurent: Eve Sane Laurennnnn…t (THE T’s IN BOTH “SAINT” AND “LAURENT” SHOULD BE BARELY AUDIBLE)

Gilt Sale and Recent Purchases

The Gilt Groupe Warehouse sale from a few weekends ago was a really unique experience. I’ve never been to one before but I’m so happy I did!

Here’s what we found:

Gant Deck Jacket
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Jack Spade Sweater

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Thakoon dress

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Something fun 😉

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My sample sale shopping tips:

  1. Don’t make a list, but do have a budget. I made (and posted here on the blog) an extensive shopping list. This turned out to be a big waste of time since I didn’t really know beforehand what I would find. I do recommend having an idea of the maximum amount you’d like to spend for the event. This way, you can shop and buy with a clear mind.
  2. Wear tall shoes. I felt bad for the shorter girls, but having height definitely helps you spot items over people’s shoulders and sift through far away clothing racks.
  3. Wear form fitting clothes. The room will get packed and you will knock into your neighbors, so minimize your impact by wearing clothes that won’t get caught by hangers, etc.
  4. Eat breakfast. Working a sample sale requires a lot of energy. You don’t want to be exhausted or slow when shopping in a room full of crazed deal-seekers. You need to be alert and quick!
  5. Arrive early. Ok, we may have overdone it by arriving at 7:30am for a 9am event, but the line builds quickly and if you’re competitive like me, you’ll want to get first dibs on everything inside.
  6. Don’t drink too much Prosecco. If you do, you may need to waste critical shopping time waiting in line for the restroom. Don’t do this to yourself. Stay focused and grab drinks when you’re done perusing the room 2-3 times.
  7. Don’t shop with friends. I brought my fiance with me to look for guys clothes, but as soon as we got in line, we agreed that we should split up. We were both on missions and didn’t need distractions! This plan worked out quite well because there’s no way we could have browsed both men’s and women’s sections together within the allotted timeframe.
  8. Know your size in different designers and which silhouettes flatter your body. This one is tough because sample sales often expose shoppers to items they may not have access to on a regular basis. However, if you know that you generally wear a certain size in certain designers and that straight and narrow shapes don’t flatter your curves, this can help you quickly separate the maybes from the no-ways!

Other recent purchase

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I also bought a book for the spring as I work on my resolution to read more this year. I’m currently wrapping up a book on consumer behavior called Consumerology and can’t wait until I get started on this one.

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NYFW Favorites

Unlike others in the blogging world, I actually wasn’t too interested in NYFW. In fact, I didn’t even look at runway stills until I started writing this post. Perhaps the debates on whether or not fashion shows and fashion weeks still matter have affected my interest in them. Recently, I have been taking cues from what’s sold in stores and what my favorite bloggers and fashion personalities are wearing. I’m more apt to re-pin an outfit I like than scroll through the slideshow of a particular designer’s presentation. This isn’t to say that designers’ collections are irrelevant. I’m slowly learning which designers’ aesthetics fit my personality and I’m excited to see that list grow. However, the idea of trends doesn’t sit too well with me anymore.

My issue is that to follow trends, I either have to spend a little bit of money (Forever 21, Zara) or a lot of money (at some high-end retailer). I don’t want to be wasteful but I don’t want to dump a significant amount of money into something that will look dated in a few seasons. So I just ignore trends. I focus more on what I find beautiful and the story I’d like for my attire to tell.

Below are the designs that inspire me the most for this upcoming fall (you can never start building your future wardrobe too early right?)

Thakoon

Cushnie et Ochs
 
Rachel Zoe
 
Prabal Gurung
 
Helmut Lang
 
Jason Wu
 
Narciso Rodriguez
 
[Click on Photos for Sources]

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African Love

London-based Nigerian designer Duro Olowu is coming to JC Penny this spring! I love the looks below and will definitely be checking out his line. I usually don’t shop here and lately JCPenny hasn’t been doing too well in the market. Hopefully moves like this will help the retailer recover.

This last print is insane!

Duro’s known for his wild prints, feminine silhouettes, and vintage 70’s inspiration. This collaboration is great because his clothes usually retail at high-end stores like Barney’s and Yoox.com. Also, as a Nigerian, I can imagine how hard it must have been for him to start a career in fashion (Nigerians love machismo). I see this as an opportunity to support change in my community.

Will you be checking this line out?

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Spring 2013 (NYFW)

My favorite looks and trends from the city that never sleeps.

Christian Siriano

I love the ease of this dress, and the fact that it can be dressed up or down depending on the occasion.

Jenni Kayne

I love the simplicity and structure of this dress.

Monique Lhuillier

Peplum tops and skinny pants, my two favorite items. I’m so glad that peplum is hanging around for another season, though, I have yet to purchase any garment in the cut!

Milly

I definitely have a soft spot for graphic black and white dresses.  This one by Milly looks so effortless.

Tibi

I’ve always been a huge fan of this silhouette.

Tracy Reese

Sporty chic is how I would describe this look. If I were to wear it in real life, I’d probably reduce the volume on the lower half by choosing slimmer slouch pants

General Observations

Designers this season, especially those at BCBG Max Azria, really seemed to be into harnesses both over and under the outfit. Also, the color-blocking pastels of last spring were turned into smoothies this year as designers blended the colors for a more subtle effect. Sheer was back again, as were cutouts. There wasn’t as much leather as I would have liked, but oh well!

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[Click on photos for sources]