Monday, April 30, 2007

RAFW - Melanie Cutfield

Melanie Cutfield started out at the Fashion Design School in New Zealand. Like many other designers, she moved to London and America to seek inspiration, but has since moved back to Australia and her roots.

While playing a strong Arabic beat on full blast, Cutfield opened the show with a few dresses that were in sections of cream/white/navy stripes. The dresses, constructed from terrific heavy silk, were so long they literally dragged on the floor, and considering the height of the models, we’d be amused to see how these looked on ‘normal’ women. The dramatic Arabic rhythms were followed by a more upbeat contemporary section, using cream and white cotton pieces. Simple lurex tank tops, worn with soft pleated skirts, made the cute sports hats look like there was a game of tennis about to start.

Cutfield’s girls wore extremely high heels – even for a runway show – and the inevitable happened. It was in no way a slight upon the poor girl who tumbled to the deck and struggled to stand up again. She’s now up there with Naomi Campbell’s catwalk of (fallen) fame.



First out in the Women's Ready-To -Wear 1 Show (WRTW1), was Dhini, a Melborne-based label, run by designer Dhini Pararajasingham. Dhini studied fashion design in Tokyo, but ended up in London for a few years, before coming back to Australia again. The show featured tailored, high-waist pants combined with funky hooded jackets, which came with loose ‘bits’ hanging off the garments. The majority of the collection was quite interesting, but lacked completeness all the way, with a few pieces that somehow didn’t quite seem to fit in. We can see the potential for Dhini, but would like to see more from this label before we give our final nod of approval.

High Tea With Mrs Woo did their usual gig of
unique combinations of West meets Eastern charm. ShowOff had very little to show off about unfortunately all very bland stuff. Funky Silence is Golden played on the French theme with navy influences, including stripy off-the-shoulder cotton dresses, all cute with black bum-pockets. The girls all wore très chic berets to add to the continental feel of the collection. We absolutely loved the cool black and white brogues.


RAFW - Anna Thomas

Melbourne-based Anna Thomas is another designer, who in 2003 stepped out on her own, after a few gigs with international designers MaxMara, Karl Lagerfeld and Narcisco Rodriquez. Her mature design direction was prevalent throughout the show, with many numbers to like.

Anna Thomas has become famous for her quality tailoring, though with crisp cotton and stiff metallic creased silk, this collection felt more sporty compared to her previous work. Demure navy coloured shirts with polkadots, and large stripes on ra-ra skirts came out first, only to give way to tulip skirts and sack dresses in more subtle, solid colours. The items were combined with well cut pin-striped suite jackets that felt almost Marc Jacobs in a way. What added to this was the flat masculine shoes that looked a tad too big on all the girls – very cool indeed. To top things off, Anna Thomas’ baby girl was in the audience – wearing a tiny little navy polkadot dress complete with acid-green belt. The woman has style.

Colours: White, navy, acid green, teak,
Silhouttes: Bottle shapes and loose tulip shapes,
Fabrics: Cotton and metallic silk
Particular garments: A fantastic feminine shirts dress and over sized masculine shoes

RAFW - camilla and marc

The Sydney based designer duo camilla and marc has a lot to be proud of since their launch in 2003. Scoring the grand opening of the Sydney Fashion Week is a well-recognised accomplishment, but we’re also referring to the recent hype over camilla and marc’s excellent write-up, on the front cover of Women's Wear Daily. OK, Patty Huntington may be to blame for that, though we’re more used to reading Patty’s dry commentary, than hearing her singing the praises of fashion designers.

This sunny Sydney morning an impeccably well-dressed crowd had gathered at the Sydney Theatre company. Among the audience were a mix of striking Japanese, French, and Swedish designs, although plenty of camilla and marc pieces stood out to pay tribute to the show we were about to see. The collection, which featured white, cream and pale-grey repeatedly, brought thoughts of sixties style to mind. Dresses came in either daring thigh-high or ancle-lengths, but with a modern twist featuring thick zips running down the middle of the backs, creating ruler straight lines along the dresses. A couple of neon-blue dresses wowed the audience and felt very up to the minute.

It’s wonderful to see that camilla and marc have been picked up by our online bible Net-A-Porter recently. Although, this can suggest the label will go onwards and upwards to London or New York, meaning an end to their shows in their own ‘back yard’ so to speak. Will this be the last year camilla and marc grace us with their presence, following in the footsteps of Sass & Bide, Willow et al? Let’s hope not.

White, cream, pale grey
Silhouttes: Clean geometric lines, a-shaped dresses
Knits, silk, leather

Rolling Stones, underground
Inspiration: French lace, futurism and bold masculine shapes
Particular garments:
cobolt blue, hooded chiffon over sized tops



Saturday, April 28, 2007


Wednesday, April 25, 2007

The Fader Magazine – Online

Awesome in-depth reportage and image provider The Fader Magazine delivers a dynamic range of articles, right up our street. But apart from an edgy appearance and excellent content, they’ve now expanded the magazine presence online. While making its entire music selection available to download on iTunes, you can also download the full magazine issue as a PDF file. What we love about The Fader is the focus on music and lifestyle, mixed with interesting articles on their blog (there’s even Fader Japan, shame our Japanese isn't quite up to speed). In issue 45 Aussie designer Perks And Mini get a good write up too - great for them, because looking at their fit-inducing web site, they need all the help they can get.

Though we do prefer printed magazines, there are loads of other benefits in a cybernet version. Online, the magazine makes zero dollars in magazine sales, and only gains revenue through paying advertisers. But they’re spared the headache and costs of printing, distribution etc., and gain more time to produce editorial. It’s greener – no use of resources in printing and no pollution afterwards. But the reader benefits from having cool, high-resolution images on file.


Johnny Marr & PF Flyers Cure Autism Now

Iconic former lead guitarist of The Smiths and now plays his spangly guitar with Modest Mouse, can add yet another merit to his sparkly cv. Sneaker giant PF Flyers has picked up Johnny Marr to deliver a special edition sneaker due 10 July this year (check it out here). The design, which features dark blue leather with black accents, comes with Marr’s signature laser etched on the tongue.

PF Flyers will be donating all shoes and all money raised directly to charities Cure Autism Now (US) and The Pictor School (UK).

There’s only 108 pairs available in the UK and US so sign up here to get a pair of Marr’s sneakers.

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Monday, April 23, 2007

Répondez S’il Vous Plaît

So here we go again – let the games begin. With 7 days to go ‘til the mad stint at RAFW, we’re thrilled to see that invites are still pouring in. But what’s even more exciting is the grand opening at the Sydney Theatre company this year. The prestigious kick-off show, which has been awarded to Camilla and Marc, will be followed by Lisa Ho at an off-site event. Though the number of “usual suspects” has been reduced, it’s likely to be a fashion festival with its own flavour. There will be lots of interesting young labels like Life With Bird, and last year’s fashion darlings Anna and Boy. Nicola Finetti will be introducing his new offspring Fissoni Finetti – a cool urban menswear line. The whole event has been reconfigured, so stay tuned to see what it looks like. Hopefully there’ll be a better deal for all the exhibitors who’ve been hitherto stuck upstairs at “The Source” trade show.


Sunday, April 22, 2007

New York Fashion Now - V&A

From London’s Victoria & Albert Museum comes another brilliant exhibition not to be missed (remember Popoganda and Fashion-ology?). “New York Fashion Now” will showcase clothes and accessories from a range of New York's emerging fashion talent. But the angle is not just a selection of interesting clothes, but rather to illustrate New York as a working environment for the fashion industry. By emphasising how its creative legacy, successful fashion empires, and press & retail sectors work hand-in-hand, it’ll be a fascinating exhibition to visit. The display will feature twenty dynamic young design labels (most of them launched within the past three to seven years) such as Zac Posen, Maggie Norris, Thom Brown, Mary Ping and Derek Lam. It’ll chart the contributions each has made to the fashion industry and will include elegant sportswear, new menswear, expressions of craft and avant-garde design. Opened on 17 April it’ll run until 23 September.


Saturday, April 21, 2007

The Art of Teese Down Under

Queen of Burlesque, M.A.C Viva Glam spokesperson, and ex-Mrs Marilyn Manson (phew!) will attend Rosemount Australian Fashion Week (RAFW) in Sydney as part of her Lipteese World Tour. Ms. Von Teese will include a round of commercial appearances, followed by a special event due to take place on the first night of RAFW, Monday 30th April. The “Lipteese” show will make its Australian debut at an invitation-only event at the Foundation Hall in the Museum of Contemporary Art. Throughout the week, the fashion icon and author will also attend a select number of fashion shows as a Guest Fashion Editor of Harper’s Bazaar Australia. Says Dita about the MAC collaboration: “Through my Lipteese tour, I’m combining two of my passions – burlesque performance coupled with a commitment to spreading the word about the importance of HIV prevention. I’m thrilled that my work with M.A.C Cosmetics and The M.A.C AIDS Fund allows me to come to Australia to raise awareness in a provocative, attention-getting way.”

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Friday, April 20, 2007

Take No Prisoners, says William Klein

Well they say that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, though you’d have to wonder if that really is the case for everyone. Reading that maestro John Galliano has been ordered to pay £140,000 in damages, after being found guilty of plagiarism, adds a whole new dimension to the expression.

Louise Roe, Vogue reports: “A court in France ruled that in his current ad campaign, the British designer had copied William Klein's trademark technique of painting over photographs. The creative director of Dior admitted he had been “inspired” by Klein, but denied the charges of plagiarism. According to the Daily Mail, Klein was furious when he first saw the images appearing in glossy magazines, all of which have now been withdrawn from publication. The 79-year-old, who is based in Paris, continued, “I was very bitter and angry when I found out. It felt like a kick in the teeth to the integrity of my work.””

What complete bollocks, we're off to paint over some photographs. Let's hope John hasn't put his paint brushes away for good (ed.).

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Thursday, April 19, 2007


Monday, April 16, 2007

coolchiq Autumn Favourites


Thursday, April 12, 2007

A Tiger Tail From Japan

Japanese designers have a lot to answer for these days. We love the cool sneakers that Yasuhiro Mihara has designed for Puma so innovative, fun and whacky. Shinji Sudo’s designs for Asics are really striking, and give a real retro feel, while still looking very modern and street wise. Onitsuka Tiger is of course another label with tons of super sneakers out there now. Pictured here, is a striking art piece that’ll be displayed in Onitsuka Tiger flagship stores & exhibitions worldwide. These are currently on display in the Bondi junction flagship store. The iconic image has been translated into print-ads, posters, and window stickers etc, with the title “Made of Japan”. This is the dog's!


Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Comme des Garcons Come Out to Play

Back in the glorious days of the nineties you may recall Odeour53, the weird scent which caused a bit of a stir for its odd name and many tasteless jokes (“How did they get the cat to sit on the bottle?” etc. and other delightful jokes). The result of the blending of 53 un-conventional scents somewhat faded and was soon forgotten - only to erupt again in April 2007, when the Japanese designer came back with a vengeance. The perfume, presented in a childish-looking design appearance, isn’t at all related to the Minnie Mouse ears that Rei Kawakubo sent out on stage in Paris not long ago. Though you’d be forgiven for thinking it’s an extension of the collection when you hear the name of the perfume is "Play". The perfume is extremely simple with classic ingredients such as -
Head: bitter orange, black pepper, lime and saffron
Heart: thyme, sage and sea notes
Base: oak moss, patchouli and musk


Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Let Me In - Mario Testino

Any Objections?, Front Row Backstage, Kids, and Diana: Princess of Wales. From the Peruvian-born starlet comes another publication - 300 pages of fashion shots, to be released in April.

“As one of the 21st century’s most travelled, acclaimed, and influential fashion photographers, Mario Testino has unsurpassed access to the most magnetic stars of popular culture. For some time now he’s been collecting a personal archive of off-screen moments, often snatched spontaneously before, during, and after more official sittings for Vanity Fair, Vogue, and Testino’s many clients in the world of fashion. The result is a portrait not just of a generation of the most wanted and talked-about, but an invitation to be part of the backstage parties and unstaged moments of Testino’s life.”


Monday, April 02, 2007

Fashiontrend - The Way We Like It

While we’re often surprised over the large number of bland-looking front covers, one fashion magazine that always deliver cool front covers is Fashiontrend. Issue 7 of the quarterly-issued fashion bible is just hot out from press and we absolutely love it.