Vanity + Vintage #12: Miracle at Gate 28

Keeping it moving:
A fresh pot of coffee, a favourite cup of tea, or even a must-have fashion magazine could not aid me in the tiresome traffic of travelling. The hustle and bustle, the constant bag carrying and remembering not to forget anything important may not seem as stressful in the beginning. However, when one is also seeking immediate inspiration all things in life are considered or should be. 

What state of mind are we in: do our muscles need a spa day, do we have hunger, or are we in serious need of using the lavatory. Excusable chuckles aside, these small things matter and can entirely affect our focus or lack thereof.

The exhumed:
Good things tend to come to those who wait right! Or, in my case to those who forget that fashion goodies are buried within their own belongings. I have a great memory, but I swear when it comes to selected items from my fashion accessories I believe I sporadically hide them from myself! Perhaps using the same carryall bag would prevent such occurrences.

After unpacking a few items in desperate need of locating my allergy medicine I came across a sentimental necklace that I thought I had lost a couple years back in the move. I remember the exact day, the climate and even what I wore when I could not find this wonderful vintage necklace; tearfully blaming anything and everything in site. "Why now," I'd ponder to myself. I suppose on that particular day it wasn't the right time for me to wear the necklace or was it?
Diane Von Furstenburg Scarf vintage
Have you ever imagined a certain look in your mind, but when it came time to actually finding all of the elements for your outfit something goes wrong! You forget that you gave those shoes away, or you cannot find that special skirt or Tee that makes you feel sexy! Needless to say, I had one of those days when I misplaced my necklace.

I haven't the answer (to the reasoning) behind me losing this necklace, however it once was lost and now it's found. And, all that I know is that I was rewarded instant inspiration from a mere glance. Being in a crowded airport did not matter nor did the awkward gentleman who sat directly in front of me "pretending to read" his newspaper bother me. It was much like that breakthrough moment when a baby formulates his first words, only this moment involved vintage jewellery and a slight gasp with a prolonged smile.What can I say ... fashion speaks to one in mysterious ways.

As I looked around still with a content face I was reminded that there really isn't anything to be stressed out about. I had memories of my late friend Bruce who had given me this necklace. I could hear his voice whispering in a laid back manner, "relax, you'll find what you're looking for." If it took my basket woven necklace to grace me with its presence for a much welcomed reunion then let it be ... and there it wasunexpected inspiration and gratitude at gate 28.

Vintage pendants -Blogger style


Notes on Rising Stars

I met a large amount of amazing people during London Fashion Week and wanted to bring the spotlight to a few designers that are heading to a bright future in the industry. Fashion week had me scouting for talent, doing necessary work, and enjoying every moment.

From emerging designers and models to established boutique owners and fashion professionals, there was much to see, and many opportunities to network if you preferred. Not to mention if you dug a little deeper than the average person, you'd also find that the work hard, play hard mentality had indeed paid off to many who stood amongst the crowds.
Maali Runway Nigerian Fashion  (Above and below) Maali designs, photo:Trevor Griffiths iDeLick Media
Exhausted by travel, but ready for anything that would come my way, entered three designers on the moveLinda Maikori of UK/Nigerian based label Maali, London-based American designer Richelle Dynae, and South African designer Lesego Malatsi of Mzanzi Designers Emporium. There were several others that were noteworthy, however these particular designers left me with a different impression and truly exuded their passion both on and off the runway.

I had the pleasure to meet and work with them a bit backstage and during the show. I must admit after years of doing behind the scenes work from fashion direction and styling to designing this was probably the most calming backstage experience.

Each designer had their own story to tell, whether unconventional, historic, dramatic, or symbolic. Maali showcased a colourful palette, emitting sparkles of hand-beading and wrap silhouettes that combined Nigerian and British elements within her inspiration. Her collection was a line that revived old cultural references, as well as bringing a contemporary effect for wearability.
Nathan Thompson Photography Fashion's Finest
(Above left Nathan Thompson -Photography) (Above right- photography by See Li & below)designs by Lesego Malatsi 
Soweto Designer Lesego Malatsi Branson Centre
Lesego Malatsi, a businessman and alumni of the Branson Centre, South Africa celebrated his artful eye with a display of bright colours and signature collection details. With a nod from the audience, and an even earlier one by Richard Branson himself, the boldness of the line was one that immediately grabbed your attention.

The Branson Centre focuses on mentoring those with a clear vision foreseeing themselves as potential business owners. The entrepreneurship programme has broadened the minds of many who show excellence in their craft or have thought big career-wise, yet had no aid in funding. Programme participants are the business leaders of the future; making a difference in the world around them. The Branson Centre provides a network of opportunity, including business coaching that allows one to think on a grander scale about the future of their initial business. Hats off to Malatsi for following his dream, and making it a memorable show!
Richelle Dynae AudraE Designs
Emerging Talent London Fashion Week
Work of Richelle Dynae design in collaboration with Audra-E (Photo-courtesy of -Richelle Dynae Designs)

Speaking of hats, millinery designer Audra Elizabeth Kaske (Audra E) also known as the other half of the collaborative S/SU-2012 line of Richelle Dynae Designs won the crowd by her timeless pieces of couture head-wear. Designer Richelle Dynae's intricate work evoked enough theatrical and historical influence to remind you why her avant-garde garments won at New Zealand's 2010 World of WearableArt (WOW) awards.

From farthingales and corsets to delicately produced cocktail-styled hats and masks, there was a well-made and exquisite performance prepared. After getting to know the designers a bit more, the artistic chemistry between these two ladies was proof of a beautiful partnership that's bound to flourish with each creation.

Other lines that I admired were by designers Jo Hendo, Jo Black Craze, Masha Ma, and Jasper Garvida.

Other photos by: Ladyofashion, courtesy of designer's site.
           A quick shot after working with Audra-E and Dynae

Richelle Dynae Designs
A view from the back details.


Emerging Talent, LFW: It's Only Just Begun

The Roundup!
Just like New York fashion week I'm sure that you've seen an abundant amount of pictures from London Fashion Week shows and styles from your favourite designers. I do have many to share, but I thought I would give you a much different dose of my fun during my fashion week here in London.

There's still more events to attend and through it all I am actually impressed that amidst trotting off to a few shows, taxi-hopping, and meeting inspiring people literally within arms reach, I've managed to get quite a bit of work done as well. I am usually here and there for work with no time to spare other than sleep and eat, so this was a special treat!

Upon my arrival I eagerly tried to catch the IFB Crystals and Crumpets Swarovski event, but sadly my flight felt it necessary to become severely delayed. Everything worked out best following afterward though, and here's a little roundup with a handful snapshots.

London per usual is always a nice welcome back when I come here; for this particular visit I was fortunate to have a couple of days free without having to dress up or give any presentation of any kind. This casual and relaxing journey would also include spotting Theory's Oliver Theyskens right behind me, meeting the lovely Faye of, All These Pretty Things, Susie of, Style Bubble, in addition to loads of others within the fashion and entertainment industry. Perhaps, I may need to swap out memory cards at this point.
Faye is everything that you'd expect her to be and more, though I must admit I did not expect this stylish woman to be so tall! What an absolute beauty! At first sight you can see why photographers would stop her on the street because of her unique style.... (Ahem, I suggest more style photos, please!) We spent the day chatting about blogging, fashion, and sharing our passions amongst other issues that were close to our hearts. If it weren't for us having watches we could have easily kept on chatting away. Thanks Faye and hope to see you again in the future.
london Fashion
Toward the ending of our meet, we had the pleasure to take a glimpse of the window at Debenhams Oxford Street to watch Rory Andrew, (a student from Scotland whose making waves in the industry, and also participating on the Team UK World Skills competition) work in action. This young man was live sketching as a crowd of people zoomed in closely through the glass.

With bright flashes being clicked every millisecond, and boisterous sounds of the city he seem uninhibited by the multiple stares from the crowd. He was entirely in his artistic element. I invite you to take a brief look at the photos and complimentary video footage. I added a tune to drown out our voices, since I am not a fan of listening to my own voice! :) My apologies for the shaky action, I never stated that I was a videographer.

Rory Andrew

Emeli Sande Ladyofashion dazed confused London party
Emeli, the songstress!

Last but not least, one of the few low-key events that I attended and actually remembered to bring my camera to was the Dazed and Confused/Club Monaco dinner party. I met one of my favourite fashion writers and style bloggers, laid back magazine fashionistas, and a wonderful singer, Emeli Sandé who was soulful and just as fashionable! Above all most people there and even at the parties we went to afterward were great fun to speak to. And, yes, there was also heavy amounts of champagne that basically followed you as you mingled around by the second.

I'm usually quite tired after a whole day of fashion movement, especially without the proper walking shoes, however I enjoyed the casual and intimate ambiance of several particular parties on this night. Sleep deprived, yes, but rest will come soon and then I suppose it's back to reality and jetting off again in a week or so. But, I am more likely to wear my Toms shoes for that airport venture.
Dazed's 20th Anniversary Issue: with special art direction from Riccardo Tisci.
  A peek of the fall collaboration with Club Monaco & Dazed & Confused, which also features musicians, bloggers and other fashion enthusiasts in the lookbook.
A relaxed snapshot with Susie!
Taking a dinner break!
London Fashion Week Emeli Sande Club Monaco Party 2011
 London Fashion Bloggers
 Thanks to Susie's boyfriend Steve (above) of Style Salvage for quickly snapping great pics of us! 
I will have more for you in the next few days or so if I can, but first I think I'll catch my breath and head out for a dose of vintage shopping. Most certainly, all in the name of work of course!


Gudrun Sjödén, a Shopping List, & Cheers to Fall

Are you a browser before acquiring items of any genre online? I am! There are moments when my fast fingers on the keyboard become stylishly trigger happy, nonetheless that's quite a rarity for me. This season as we transition from summer to autumn or perhaps you might be heading into spring where ever your location might be. Which ever the case, there's an overflowing amount of ways to absorb and interpret your fashion at the momentwhether you follow trends or not!

I decided to show you a few things on my wanted list, a couple of styles that I a looking forward to purchase and several pieces of inspiration from a brand that motivates my style attitude.

(Above) What I want: a few items this season, from gold heels, to more jumpers and dashes of cobalt, and lastly another leather jacket to complete my fall wardrobe (you cannot have enough leather styles!)

If you've never heard of the brand Gudrun Sjödén of Sweden let me tell you it's been one of my favourite shops for a while, ever since my associate Inga gave me a pair of stockings from the collection. Not to mention, in case you ever needed to know that they even ship to the Faroe Islands; now this is somewhat meaningful, because I have two family friends who are actually from there ... who knew!

The Gudrun Sjödén line usually consist of sprightly prints that make you smile or at least have you curious, because it's not a line that designed toward a specific social status or luxe display. Nor is it a trend-based collection, instead the versatility and use of natural materials works favourably in the designs offering pieces that may be worn beyond any fashion season.

There's definitely a unique type of customer who acquires a Sjödén creation: one whose casual style seeks a hint of cultural inspiration, so to speak. Moreover, I'd describe the collection as worldy-art worn from a contemporary nomadic-fashionista, yet there are classic and basic elements grounded by the brand's roots in many of the pieces as well.

In fact, my favourite part may be that the Sjödén team also believes in being socially responsible, providing an area of green apparel for the ethical consumer. The product: functional garments with reduced packaging that focuses on clothing produced for diverse women of all sizes. Additionally, there's home decor items and fabrics that may be purchased alongside of their clothing.
There's a healthy amount of silhouettes that have striking huescolour blocked layering separates that can work into a muted wardrobe or rich prints to liven up your ensembles. In the Julie & Juliette, and Autumn Dusk line extension, you'll find influence coming from Malaysia, to the artistic shadows of France, amongst others. I feel that the clothing's comfortable aesthetic is the essential part of what makes this brand so popular as well as the impressions of art.

Take a gander for yourself, even if not your daily style the colours are merely exuberant throughout ... a quirkish cool wind that's also quite inspiring.
Photo credit: www.Gudrun Sjödé, Fashion Tales moodboard

DIY: A Gift From India

couple of years ago I was given an intricately printed dress-fabric from my then flat mate's sister. She had worn it as a dress and later had no use for it, as it also had areas that needed repair. She said, "well if anyone can do something with this I think you will..."—  I've forgotten that I had this amazing piece, hopefully I've done this dress justice.

Initially when I tried it on the immediate task on the agenda was to take it off, given the incredibly ultra-slim fit! I'm not certain how one was suppose to move in this woven concoction. After I caught my breath I decided to hang this beautiful Indian printed dress on my wall within eyes-sight, so that every time in-passing I'd think of an idea to create or merely stare at it, grabbing inspiration with each look.
RE-design: the task at hand:
For this piece I needed to take out the hem of the sleeves for my arms, in addition to removing the invisible zipper for any wearing chance that this fabric had for my body and style. Creating a cropped jacket was the absolute concept that continued to enter my mind... the next part was actually executing that vision. 

When travelling anywhere I often try to visit local shops to find unique trims that can be used for future projects. I adored these crest enameled buttons, and thought they were perfect for the style combination that I wanted. I hope that you enjoy my jacket version of this lovely fabric! I will definitely think of another project for the excess fabric, however in the meantime here's what I've done. I'm also filled with anticipation to share a few (semi-completed) projects that I have up my sleeve, well... in due time! Let me know if you have any DIY questions.
These last two shots were actually an accident, as I wasn't "ready" (notice the big eye stare), but I thought I'd throw them into the mix... What can I say except that I am human. haha! Sometimes being partially unprepared makes the best candid photos, especially in route to work! Have you ever been pressed for time to take pictures and ended up with something that you liked... that may have been a mistake?  

I hope that all of you lovelies are having an amazing day, and welcome home if you are safely back from "The Big Apple" and its fashion festivities.
The goods: Gold trimmed tiered dress- Ladyofashion for Gestalt Collection, Jacket-DIY- Ladyofashion, Ribbon belt-Ladyofashion, Shoes-seen here.

Autumn Beats

Hello dears, I hope that you all are having an amazing week. Autumn/winter fashions have risen for all to see and will soon lend themselves for meeting our special stylish wants/needs

Most of you are probably in NYC at the moment, and if your'e not, that's okay, because it has already been very exciting viewing the tweets and photos from our fellow fashion bloggers. 

For this season I'm looking forward to donning my new boots, which should be arriving at my doorstep very soon... stay tuned!

In the meantime I've finally completely unpacked my bags from my previous holiday last month (fun in the sun and other excursions), now preparing to visit family for several days (whilst in-transit to a work meeting) next week. I'm also hoping to listen to and borrow favourite records from my father's epic vinyl collection. 

Happy September everyone: 
In the approaching days fashion will be fully loaded at every angle, so as you're busy keeping up with trend-reports, runway shows, work, or finding inspiration I thought I'd share a few parcels that I received in the past weeks while I was away.

The folks at Karen Kane were nice enough to send me autumn items from their collection, which is available online now. Additionally, the girls at Maylee's Jewelry created unique custom mask earrings that they sent me, which worked in well for my outfit. 

This lace dress is quite comfortable and so easy to wear. It really did not need to be styled much at all, which is why I'll probably get loads of wear out of this garment. I'm certain that my leather crop jacket will become quick friends with this dress as well. I've also been adoring a few shoe styles at the moment (see 1 & 2, & 3). Of course, I'm still pondering about many others that will aid my ready-to-go lifestyle, and autumn/winter closet situation.
Why the sitting you ask? Pardon the exhaustion image, but it's from salsa dancing... However, admittedly this was actually a smart outfit to wear that night; as I headed out with dear friends, Adam and Dominic who were in town only for one night. They picked me up immediately after work. We enjoyed a lovely dinner at Bonefish (recommended), afterward we listened to live music and danced the night away.

What are you doing today? Wishing you a happy Wednesday loves!

The goods:  Printed dress & Black lace dress- c/o Karen Kane, African mask earrings-c/o Maylee's Jewelry, heels-Anthropologie, Striped belt-Forever21, Beaded necklace-seen here, Gold-disc necklace-Ladyofashion (seen here)


Colouring Happy

For most of us the summer days are ending. And the welcoming glossy pages, the look books of autumn fashions, and colours sanctions any must-have shopping trip, right?
Today is a glorious sun-filled day, but the wind is blowing mildly, and whatever deal the sky seems to be making with mother nature is quite alright with me. I can feel the mood of autumn trying to quietly seduce the atmosphere with dashes of wind, (though she only comes out at night momentarily), I am bursting with excitement to break out the leather goods, boots and chunky scarf collection!

Flowers are wonderful emotional enhancers, like delicate beings sensitive to any given circumstance, whether sad or full of contentment: They have abundant meanings in various cultures, and locations, which is also why I love them so much.
"Blumen und Kunst,"  Flowers and Art, Holland
This outfit is inspired by my passion for diverse types of flowers, their significance, and how its simple presence makes me feel... HAPPY!  I'm generally a happy person, but let me tell you sometimes life happens you know, when you might work a chaotic week, and things seem to not go anywhere close to what's planned, but that's okay! So, there is no need to pretend that everything is suppose to always go the way that you wanted it to go. However, for me lately I've been on an incredible journey enjoying the view from a totally different angle... seems to also be this year's theme for me!

Yes, sometimes we may miss our train per se, only to find another route to our success and satisfaction far beyond our wanted initial results!

Here's my present to you: a flower bouquet of happiness for your day, your week, or month... whatever you may be going through, I am wishing you a joyous morning, because joy should always come in, at some point every morning that you wake-up!

Floral fun and lively smiles...
Happy looming Autumn to you!

The goods: Printed dress- Forever21, Wedges-Seychelles , vintage necklace- seen here, Leather watch-Seiko 
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