Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Epiphany of the Moment: O How He Loves

It's almost like clockwork. As soon as the hands of time tick 12:00 AM in January 1 of every new year, deep seated thoughts arise. Thoughts that hope the best for the days to come, that resurface unbridled optimism, that motivate resolutions. But how often do we adhere to these? Oftentimes, we don't. Even worse is we forget them.

How fascinating is it, then, that our Father in heaven never forgets to love us. Isn't that amazing? God chooses to love us self-determined and wayward creatures that He built a way for our salvation through Jesus.

Why not be thankful today?

"How He Loves" by David Crowder Band is a song that expresses just that, God's unconditional love. In the lyrics, Crowder describes how God's affection is akin to the forces of a hurricane to a tree--immensely powerful that once we realize its existence, we can't help but embrace His glory.

So before we greet each other Happy New Year, let's not forget to thank God, the creator of the universe, time, space and life. Even better, why not be thankful today?

Video from youtube.com

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Archive of the Moment: Zara in Hollywood

This was one of my early posts about Zara coming over to Hollywood. It's interesting how I saw things differently back then (actually it was just last year). I don't know how to describe it though. Anyway, below is my account of my first visit to Zara:

I haven't been out for a while so I decided to head to my second favorite spot (first place goes to Eagle Rock), Hollywood/Highland. The mission: to score one of them quarterly magazines from H&M. Unfortunately, as soon as I stepped onto Hollywood Blvd., I immediately failed my assignment.

The perpetrator: Zara

Little did I know that the space bombarded with scaffolding right next to H&M is now the new Zara store. And since Zara is pretty new here in Hollywood, I thought it would be a great idea to tour the place, to get the feel and ambience of the Spanish label's version of fast-fashion.

Frankly, I was overwhelmed by all their offerings!

On the first floor, I saw Fall dresses, thick jackets, faux fur, and a myriad of platform heels. On the second floor, I viewed racks and racks of men's coats, and some more jackets and shoes. Frankly, I was getting overwhelmed by all their offerings that I didn't know where to start. Then again, my mission wasn't to go there in the first place.

As I perused their coats (because I deem it necessary for Fall), I discovered that their price range is lightyears away from me! I was so disappointed to get this realization. But, that didn't prevent me from discovering more of what Zara has to offer. They have faux fur-collar coats at $279 (!) a pop, and cadet jackets that suggest Sergeant Pepper and his ilk. Also, they have hi-top trainers that I thought would look great on me.

Alas, no cash means no shopping. But on the positive side, Christmas is on the horizon. That means cash, and hopefully lots of it!

Image from la.racked.com

Playlist of the Moment: Tra-La-La

I know half the world is prepared for Christmas Eve. Too bad here in GMT-8, it's still December 23rd (as of this post). So to kick off Santa's arrival, here are a couple of tunes I'm replaying over and over. Some of them, I'm sure, will hearken back memories:

"Sway" by Bic Runga - the 90's in all its angsty yet oh-so-romantic glory.

"What's My Name?" by Rihanna featuring Drake - it's so catchy, too catchy in fact.

"Safety Dance" by Men Without Hats - just because I can't get enough of the 80's. This one is covered by the good people from "Glee."

"Good For Great" by Matt & Kim - happy days never sounded this great!

"Northeast" by Matt & Kim - watch out for this duo in their new album Sidewalks.

"Dynamite" by Taio Cruz - for those dance-crazy nights.

Image from blogs.pitch.com

Monday, December 20, 2010

Update of the Moment: New URL

Hi everyone! If you reached this site successfully, then I want to personally welcome you to http://luhblah.blogspot.com! I believe a new URL and light cosmetic upgrades are long overdue. Just in time for the holidays, right?

Friday, December 17, 2010

Mood of the Moment: Holiday Highs

We're in the middle of December, and I'm counting down until the big day, Christmas! I really can't wait because I simply adore family gatherings and everything fun. I am already done with school (until dreaded January kicks in) and all I'm doing is hang out with friends, particularly Abby who came from Las Vegas. I'm so glad to see her again.

Anyway, a little update on the wishlist, I am pleased to announce that I got the coat checked out! Well, it's neither Martin Margiela nor is it camel-colored, but I love it anyway; it's warm and I got it on sale. What matters (to me at least) is I am not dirt poor this holiday.

What matters is I am not dirt poor this holiday!

Among other things, I am watching films that are set in Los Angeles. It's rainy right now and I want sunny L.A. back. I got "Inception" and "A Single Man" (that movie by Tom Ford) down, and what's left are "(500) Days of Summer" and "L.A. Story" with Steve Martin.

Though I am out of school, I guess it'll still be a busy month! My type of busy this time around. I bid you all a Merry Christmas! Enjoy the weather, and if you're in the Southern Hemisphere, do wallow in that sunny scape.

P.S.: Pre-Fall 2011 collections are already out! Take a sneak peek at Vogue.com. Time flies by don't it?

Image from losangeleshomesguide.com; videos from youtube.com

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Wish of the Moment: The Man With The Bag

It's officially December and it's high time to break out those knits! They're perfect for the inclement weather plus they remind me of good ole family gatherings. Need inspiration for knits? Just look at Prada, Michael Kors, Missoni, Reed Krakoff (my current favorite) and Rodarte. And if you feel brazen, ask the Big Man for those looks yourself!

Time to break out those knits!

Speaking of Santa, this song "The Man With The Bag" is my current Christmas theme. I'm just hoping I get to be the man with a new schoolbag by next year. Nevertheless, I am going forward with my narrowed down wish list:

1. Multi-purpose Bag - I'm really liking Alexander Wang's Rocco duffle, now with a shoulder strap. I saw it in Barneys New York CO-OP one time and it looks so nice. I want one in the blackest black!

2. Coat - Brown, camel, beige, nude and any shade in between are the IT colors for Fall-Winter 2010. I want in too, that is, until the new year comes. Maison Martin Margiela's coat looks very warm indeed, but it's gonna break the bank.

3. Snood - This has got to be the all time accessory for cold climate because it'll be useful no matter what. An added bonus is there's no need to wrap it around your neck! Burberry's snood still got my eye.

4. Dazed and Confused - Their December issue features electro/dance powerhouse Daft Punk! FASO or the Filipino American Symphony Orchestra is included in the spread too. Definitely more than one reason to buy.

Do you think I missed anything? Well, if you find yourself jolly generous this holiday, don't forget about me! Though, I'm sure I'll get the magazine soon.

From top: bag by Alexander Wang, $875 at www.barneys.com; coat by Maison Martin Margiela, $1275 at www.saksfifthavenue.com; snood by Burberry, $325 at us.burberry.com; magazine at dazeddigital.com

Video from youtube.com; images from barneys.com; saksfifthavenue.com; us.burberry.com; sharif.st

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Trend of the Moment: My Life in 3D

I'm sure most of you are aware of the 3D craze sweeping Hollywood. 3D here, 3D there, 3D everywhere! It seems the new focus is in churning more films in 3D--not so much in making ingenious storylines.

To capitalize on this steaming trend, sunglass makers are quickly jumping the wagon to develop their own line of 3D shades. OK, that may sound self-defeating especially when real life is already in 3D, but they're supposed to be your personal pair of 3D specs! Instead of having to settle with the "Buddy Holly-like" lenses movie theaters provide, these sunnies give you the opportunity to assert your personal style. (LA Times) But besides looking awesome watching your sci-fi flick, these shades also reduce waste: theater-issued lenses are reused at least 10 times before recycling.

These sunnies give you the opportunity to assert your personal style.

Some labels launching 3D shades include Look3D for the budget-conscious types, Marchon (which licenses sunglasses to brands like Calvin Klein and Fendi), Oakley, and the mother of all 3D sunglasses, Gucci (pictured)!

As much as these products are gaining hype, there is a catch. The lenses use "passive polarization" technology proprietray to RealD movies. That means they won't work in IMAX 3D or other non-RealD movies. And they certainly won't work in 3D televisions, which use active polarization.

Image from graziadaily.co.uk

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Introspection of the Moment: What I Want

A friend once said that he gave up pursuing what he wanted in life. It's not that he's defeated; rather he relinquished authority over his life so God can step in, and lead it for him. He confesses that after the change, life has been very "satisfying."

In Psalms 34:8, it says "Taste and see that the LORD is good; blessed is the one who takes refuge in him." Here, "refuge" not only meant asking God for help, but it also meant depending on Him.

It's easy to read the passage and assume it'll be a piece of cake to let God take care of us. In reality, it's hard--probably the hardest in life--to let God take care of us when it entails allowing Him to be the master of our life! Yes, you read that right: Him the Master, the Sovereign leader, the President of our life. I know how ludicrous this sounds, but even though this arrangement doesn't leave us to any position other than to follow, it might be worthwhile to consider.

I don't want to engage in a Faustian trade that'll compromise who I am.

If you remember the film "The Devil Wears Prada," protagonist Andy Sachs led her life into a spiral because she did things her way. Of course there were a lot of factors that influenced Andy's decisions but, predominantly, it was her intrinsic motivation for success. In the process of mastering and leading her life, Andy had to exchange a part of her to attain what she thought was success.

Personally, I want to attain success (who doesn't?). Yet my fear is if I was stubborn enough to do it my way, I might end up like Andy. I don't want my life to be that way. I don't want to engage in a Faustian trade that'll compromise who I am. I don't want to be the sell-out.

And if Andy's story is any indication, then perhaps there is merit in letting God take hold of our life. Again in the passage, those who depended on God secured the privilege to "Taste and see" His goodness. We all know that God's goodness is over and beyond our expectations. So shouldn't it be safe to say that the risk to yield to His will is nil?

Video from youtube.com

Friday, November 5, 2010

Quick Vid of the Moment: Lanvin + H&M

I didn't have such a great day today, and I owe it all to a friend who really disappointed me. Thanks a lot, dude!

Anyway, I encountered this video for the Lanvin + H&M collaboration. Even if Lanvin was reasonably priced, it still wouldn't lose the romanticism and elegance embedded in the house's DNA.

Lanvin would never lose its elegance and sophistication.

After viewing the video, I thought the lunettes de soleil look pretty cool. But I've had it with cheap sunglasses. No matter how great the design is, it's still no good (breaks quickly).

Here are some lovely cartoonish looks from H&M's website:

Video from youtube.com; images from hm.com

Lust of the Moment: Native Fitzsimmons

Darn, I fell off my no-shopping policy (and that includes window shopping and online window shopping). Right now, I am ogling and poring over this super fun, colorful, and functional footwear, the Native Fitzsimmons.

The Fitzsimmons is super lightweight because it's primarily made from molded EVA (ethylene-vinyl acetate) and a neoprene sockliner. It looks amazing in torch red or any bright color, don't you think so?

It looks amazing in bright colors.

I think I'm having a phase with boots. I never wore boots before but now I love them! And speaking of boots, here are some manly booty-ful looks from Fall 2010: Kenzo, Yigal Azrouël, Bottega Veneta and another Bottega Veneta. Have a great weekend everyone!

Update: The Yigal Azrouël look is actually a long leather sock tucked over trousers. For a moment they looked a lot like boots. My bad.

Image from highsnobiety.com

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Activity of the Moment: Upgrade to Ubuntu 10.10

Before I delve into my geeky pursuits, I want to wish everyone a Happy Halloween! Have fun, be careful, and don't get ungraciously drunk!

Now, to the meat of this post: I finally upgraded to "Maverick Meerkat," or in layman term, Ubuntu 10.10! I have to give props to the developers for creating this visually stunning, lightning fast operating system. Too bad I didn't save some of my precious files from the old OS (remember that?) such as the numerous fonts and applications I laboriously downloaded.

My biggest gripe about the new version is it doesn't give a dual-boot option when you slip the CD upon starting the computer. It does, however, enable a manual partition, which to me is very, very complicated.

Props to the developers for creating this visually stunning, lightning fast OS.

To enable a pain-free dual-boot option, you must install Ubuntu via Windows by running Wubi.exe. If you follow the default settings to a T, everything else should be fine afterwards.

Another caveat is Gimp Image Editor isn't included by default. But this should be a quick fix as Gimp is available for free by browsing through the Synaptic Package Manager.

Right now, I'm updating some stuff to make Ubuntu 10.10 fit my needs. So that means tons of multimedia apps and lots of encoders!

Image from softsailor.com

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Reprieve of the Moment: J'Adore Paree

The past few weeks have been a blizzard of homework, essays, and unnecessarily lengthy readings. I apologize for my absenteeism but, hey, not reading this blog isn't the end!

In my wee times of reprieve, I finally caught up with some of Paris' big ticket shows. I tell you, the Paris collections for Spring-Summer 2011 is something to behold. Here are some of my picks:

Chanel: Karl Lagerfeld always knows how to make things big, and that includes the length of the clip. Watch the show for the clothes (look, feathers!), for the live orchestra, or for the humongous faux jardin. Either way, it's gonna be a spectacle.

Alexander McQueen: After numerous speculations, Sarah Burton's work in the label proved she has the right magic to continue the McQueen legacy. Surely she added her own touch too--less macabre and more optimistic!

The Paris collections is something to behold.

Balenciaga: The Fall 2010 collection may have left editors longing for wearability, so Nicolas Ghesquière made a Spring rendition that is just as inspiring as it is sellable. Spring 2011 is a symbiotic mix of science with the fusion of plastic and lace and other materials; punk with the blatant edginess; masculinity with the creeper shoes; and femininity with everything else!

Emanuel Ungaro: In a perfectly romantic world, everyone would be wearing this. It's punchy without being overwhelming, and soft without being inconsequential. It's clear that the house of Ungaro is moving forward with newly instated creative director Giles Deacon.

Lanvin: Feminine? Yes, actually, very much so. But it's also beautifully powerful. Elbaz has a focused vision of femininity that doesn't seem to fail. And it doesn't fail because it's comfortable and confident!

How about you? What'd you think about the collections?

Videos from youtube.com

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Thought of the Moment: Strict Liability

Remember that little fiasco in the Prada Spring-Summer 2009 show? The ones that involved models trampling on the ground?

I'm taking an introductory business law class right now and we're discussing something very relevant to the Prada situation: product liability. Clearly, there is a potential lawsuit brewing here. But before we jump to conclusions, let's think of some questions to consider:

1. Does Prada have responsibility to manufacture safe products?
2. Are the platform heels defective?
3. Do models owe a portion of the fault for falling down?

The design of the shoes is probably defective.

Let's check out the elements involving product liability!

Rule: Strict liability involving defective products is when one in the stream of commerce sold a defective product which caused harm or injury. Remember that defective product liability attacks the product not the person or business.

Stream of commerce: Prada, clearly, is in the stream of commerce because it's selling said shoes. And so are the companies that manufactured the shoes and provided the raw materials for the shoes. Liability attaches when the defective product "left defendant's hands." So, Prada, the manufacturer and the supplier of raw materials can all be sued.

Products: A product is anything manufactured, mass-produced, processed or things sold in their natural state (e.g.: eggs, fruits, vegetables). The shoes are the product because it's manufactured and mass-produced by Prada.

Defective: Defective means the product is unreasonably dangerous when used in a foreseeable way as intended. In this case the shoes are somehow defective. Once the models strapped the shoes and walked on them (because that's what you do with shoes), a couple of models started wobbling and some fell.

The shoes were not produced below the manufacturer's standard (oh no, bad quality for Prada!), but the design of the shoes is probably defective. In this case, socklets or mini socks were worn with the platforms, and there is strong belief that it caused slippage. Oh and another thing, the height of the heels may be too darn high!

Injury and harm: A consumer or a third party (e.g.: the models) is harmed. For this situation there was no injury, but there was potential that the models' ankles could get sprained or broken.

So far, we have all elements covered. Unfortunately, liability can't be established mainly because there was no injury. Plus, Prada can defend that there was comparative negligence on the models' part. The models could have prevented the fall if they test walk (test drive?) the shoes before the show to see if they were stable.

Update: A strict liability lawsuit may not favor the plaintiffs, but a negligence suit could. Again, only if there was some sort of injury. That's how the courts in the United States work.

Wanna check out more model falls? CNN, of all things news-oriented, compiled a video! Watch it here.

Video from youtube.com

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Look of the Moment: Practical Counts

Calvin Klein and Celine Fall-Winter 2010

After a few seasons of questionable winter wear, Celine and Calvin Klein are offering something more on the functional side. See their clean neck-to-toe looks? They're pretty useful when that darn city blizzard comes by.

Look for something pure, spare, structured, textured, loose...

And speaking of those labels, it seems minimal is the new (or not-so-new) trend for Spring 2011. That means a lot of restraint from our fashion side, and more on our philosophic side. Look for something pure, spare, structured, textured, loose, anything without the glitz. Jeans and T-shirt will never look more appealing.

Want more minimal inspirations for Spring? Ladies, refer to Prada, Chloé, Celine, Calvin Klein and Jil Sander. For dudes, look up Hermès, Dior Homme, Balenciaga, Prada, Raf Simons and Petar Petrov. I'll even add Ann Demeulmeester's sanitarium as a wildcard.

Images from nymag.com

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

OMG of the Moment: On Burberry's Heels

Burberry's Spring-Summer 2011 show was probably the most painful to watch. The clothes were a little heavy on the studs and rock 'n roll, but the big black elephant in the catwalk would probably be the heels that sent model Nina Porter on her knees. It wasn't the best sight to see, but kudos for her willingness to finish the walk.

Porter's struggle with the shoes was apparent when her right arm started stiffening, perhaps in an attempt to steady herself. On the last leg to close the show, she lost balance and tumbled on the runway. Surprisingly, it wasn't only her that found the shoes uncooperative. Some models took the perilous eight-inch heels off.

It was a pairing of tough biker jackets and lithe dresses.

Back to the clothes, it was a predictable pairing of tough biker jackets replete with spikes (how edgy!) over lithe silk dresses. Of course, Burberry wouldn't be complete without the trademark trench coats. Christopher Bailey remodeled the Burberry trench into a zipped coat/mini with "motocross sleeves." (Style)

There isn't anything revolutionary in the collection (save for new non-earthy colors like brilliant eggplant, avocado green and, my favorite, electric blue), yet the fluorescent belts wrapped on dresses and coats reminded me that there is something new, even a wee bit, for the trench-centric brand.

Videos from youtube.com

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Collection of the Moment: Prada's Just Bananas

It's hard to put my finger on Prada's Spring 2011 show. The message wasn't solely about wearability. The collection, it seems, is between a display of Miuccia Prada's superior craft as a designer and a derision where the collection is the joke.

Prada is probably the only label I know where competence and caprice befit each other. In other words, it thrives in contradiction--from minimal to baroque, monochrome to kaleidoscopic, quirky to sexy, funny to serious, the Spring 2011 collection exuded the all-time Prada aesthetic.

First, let's take a look at Miuccia's version of "baroque." Suffice to say that I haven't seen anything more updatedly baroque than a manic cluster of cherubs, monkeys and bananas in one dress. Other pieces have zany stripes that could put a technicolor zebra or inmate to shame. The patterns are definitely youthful and vibrant, yet it bordered cuckoo territory: some pieces are so ridiculously styled it feels almost like a joke on Prada's part.

The Spring 2011 collection exuded the all-time Prada aesthetic.

For something less of a jest, she offered superb minimalism in the mix. Sparsely decorated dresses (save for a few ruffles), jackets and skirts are probably the most coveted in the collection; they are both flattering to most body types and not overtly deranged. The plunging necklines gave sensuality and seriousness to a collection that is otherwise messing around.

Of course, Prada never disappoints with accessories. The tango heels and sombreros never looked more appropriate in the collection's Latin flair. But to add something out of left field, she presented multiplatform brogues that appeared in the men's collection and fur stoles (really? fur, for spring?).

Images from nymag.com; video from youtube.com

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Update of the Moment: Booze and Boobs!

Last week, a couple of friends gave a treat for my birthday. And the treat was alcohol! I tried wine before and thought it tasted like expired grape juice; beer was a lot like wheat grass juice; but I never tried the hard stuff so it was time for me to. After I drank shots of vodka (Smirnoff), Jäger and beer (as my ill-chosen chaser), I instantly became flushed and very, very uncoordinated. Like my head was spinning when all I'm doing is standing up.

So that was my introduction to alcohol. And surprise, surprise did it leave a lovely souvenir! After the "party" I threw up all the toxic nasty of aforementioned beverages (at the comfort of my home), and got rashes. That was the time I learned I am
alcohol intolerant. Also known as when I drink alcohol, I'll surely get allergic symptoms. I still have some rashes left over from last week. And it is unbearable!

And if you were wondering what the "boobs" are about, New York Fashion Week showed a couple of them. Fall 2010 is the season of busty, demure chests but the Spring 2011 treatment is about flaunting them. See
Marc Jacobs for sheathed chests, Altuzarra for patched poitrines, Yigal Azrouël for see-through, and rag & bone for boob suspenders.

And enjoy the Florence + The Machines' music video, "Dog Days are Over." I call it the "Eat Pray Love" theme song.

Video from youtube.com

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Feature of the Moment: What Say You?

Fall 2010 fashion is almost in full heat, and chilly nights should be fast approaching. How else to celebrate? With raging critiques! Just not mine.

I asked a couple of highly practical friends to opine on some runway looks. I gave them looks that are undoubtedly not the best, but they aren't the worst either. Read their unbiased remarks below:

Alexander McQueen Menswear

Shateka: Hell no I wouldn't be caught dead in public with that on. The whole thing is just a total mess. It's almost like a [...] Darth Vader outfit. Maybe without the gloves and Darth Vader mask it would be okay for someone. And what the hell is up with [the] shoes?!?!

Vera: Is this person male or female? This outfit might actually be pretty good for cold weather. It's thick, it looks warm, and the face mask might actually replace a thick scarf.... The face mask really bothers me; I question whether the model has [...] allergies or maybe even has some sort of contagious, airborne, sickness (though I doubt he'd be working if he did). It just doesn't make sense.

The skull pattern on the sweater is, to say the least, different and unusual. It reminds me of pirates. I do, however like the gloves and shoes, although the shoes look out of place and blend with the floor.

Alexander Wang

Shateka: The shirt--if that's what they want to call it--shows too much tummy. The thing with the long sock-looking-pants-cut-off is trashy. I don't know who in their right mind would wear that. If they make the what ever that gray thing is into a coat, it would be good on, well, anyone but me. The way the bottom is makes me wonder if she's wearing shorts or just her undies.

Shao: This outfit is so obscure, I'm not sure what kind of occasion this outfit is for. At first it looks like a business suit, but then the stomach is showing so what gives? Fall hardly ever demands that you wear sunglasses and those long socks don't look very warm. At a practicality standpoint, it's not very good in my opinion, but it looks great =). A grey/black color scheme is a good choice. I bet the guys along the front row want to take a peak to see if she's wearing any shorts or not.


Shateka: She looks like a walking magazine! Atrocious!!! The pants are okay, shoes are okay but the magazine's gotta go! I would wear the pants and shoes but not together.

Mel: I love everything about this look, plus the model is pretty. The only thing is this whole ensemble does not really scream FALL for me, instead I can see this in the transition between winter and spring. I’m not too fond of the neck piece this girl has on; it looks kinda Batman-ish. Of all the looks I was asked to critique I would have to choose this look; it's fun and definitely wearable.

Bottega Veneta Menswear

Vera: It's useful and looks very warm, but it looks sloppy. If you're going to put a fancy jacket over a regular jacket and a T-shirt, you might as well hide the under layers.

I don't like that the model is walking around with his whole hands in the pockets. Hands-in-the-pockets speaks that you're uncomfortable with yourself, neurotic, and introverted. Plus, tucking entire hands into small pockets isn't good for the figure! Who would want larger hips?!

I wonder if it was even worth styling his hair into that ridiculous-looking clam shell thing on his head.

Shao: More black? What the hell? At least this one looks more practical than Alexander's. I like the coat, it's not too short or too long. The red seems out of place since the rest of the outfit is entirely black. I don't understand the significance of wearing those ugly boots in fall. This is just my personal taste but those jeans/pants ARE WAY TOO THIN. How the heck would you sit down with them? =/


Mel: All I can say about this look is Rawr (I do not mean that in a good way)! I do not want to end up as road kill or shot by hunters because honestly when dressed like this you would definitely be mistaken for a winter forest beast. The model looks really cold and angry.

Plus points for the jacket though. I love the military style of her leather jacket and the fur on the lower portion of the jacket makes it look fun. But everything else about this outfit is just so wrong, it's just too much fur. I would not be caught dead wearing it unless I was trapped in Alaska and had to wear them to keep myself from frost bite.

Shao: At first I thought I saw a grizzly bear walking the stage. Those pants...the only way I see them being practical is if you live in the north or south pole. I like the jacket/coat thing, I want to see the rest of it but those enormous hideous pants are covering it. Color is quite plain on this one, just one color. Black and grey can get away with monochrome since they unambiguously go with anything. But brown is just too boring to only wear one color of. Those shoes, oh man, those ARE shoes right? or are her heels being covered by the ugly pants?

D&G Menswear

Shateka: What the flies?!?! I'm hoping that's for the snow. First off, how the heck is he able to walk in all that clothing? And his head is barely sticking out. I'll be honest I would buy and wear the jacket and sweater but not together. And I would wear the scarf for Christmas. But that's about it. The pants look uncomfortable to be in.

Shao: The next time I go hiking or skiing in Big Bear, I'll remember this. Jacket is great, but why isn't it zipped? There's no point in wearing an unzipped jacket made JUST for the cold weather. Who's in charge of the boots/shoes of these people? So far, all of them suck. I like the color choices with this outfit. It's not all grey like the first [and] it's not all black like the second. It's a mix of different colors and tones; I see red, green, black, grey, white, I love the diversity! Although I can't tell if it's a guy or a girl, but I'm assuming guy since a girl would wear something thinner and smaller.


Shateka: I title this one The Devil's Mistress. Due only because of all the red. It's not bad but it's just too much red. Maybe bring some of the black out and make it easier on the eyes. Maybe a design in black, but overall it's good. Except for the alligator shoes.

Vera: The outfit is sensible, and in neutral tones would be appropriate for work and such, although animal protectors would pounce at those reptile-skin shoes. I really love how the undershirt draws the attention there, thus creating a cool spot for sore eyes to relax.

I understand that the makeup was done to match the outfit, but the red eye-shadow makes the model look sick, as if she had some infection irritating her eyes. She doesn't look so happy to be wearing the outfit.

Prada Menswear

Shateka: Don't have much negative things to say about his outfit. Except the girly sweater's gotta go. Everything else is good.

Mel: I absolutely lurve, lurve, lurve the sweater. I love how this shade of pink complements the model's skin. I would have left one or two of the buttons unbuttoned because the look is a bit stiff. The pants and the shoes also go well with the whole look but I'm not too sure about the bag. This look would have gone well if paired with a soft brown leather bag or something of the sort.

Raf Simons

Vera: This piece is interesting. What is it? A baseball shirt under a vest, under a parka? The piece is like a puzzle, taking moments from life, such as a first game, a wedding, and maybe the winters from childhood and cramming it all together. The vertical stripes and patterns on the shirt and parka work, elongating the model and the white just "make his 'dreamy' blue eyes pop!" (Isn't that what people say when they notice clothes?)

Shao: That jacket looks ugly unzipped, but otherwise I think it looks good. Those thin pants does not go well with that gigantic jacket. Black and white color choices are good although a bit plain for my tastes. Finally some decent shoes! Even though they still look ugly =/. The way I see it, if you're big enough to fit that huge jacket, you won't be small enough to fit those thin ass pants. At least Americans won't anyway.

Vivienne Westwood Menswear

Shateka: I could see a couple of people wearing certain things. You (Nico) with the scarf. My brother with the pants. But I personally don't like the sweater and I absolutely hate the shoes. What the hell are those??? They look woven like a picnic basket.

Mel: I love the sweater, the pants and the shoes. The look is very laid back, comfortable and casual and the colors are definitely "in" for fall. The only thing I have a problem with is the scarf and the head dress. The add ons are very, very distracting and ruins the whole image.

Yves Saint Laurent

Shateka: The first thing that comes to mind is...nun status! The thing on her head is a total no-no. The necklace, purse and gloves all gotta go. The blouse is okay but in order for me to wear that, the blouse would have to be a little more snug. I like the skirt and the shoes.

Vera: I think nuns are getting tired of getting poked at in the fashion world, and maybe they're dishonored with the use of skirts that go above the knees. Going back to knees, I really hate when models or celebrities show them. Do they really want people to see the damage they’ve done to themselves by wearing high heels all the time?

The separate pieces [...] exaggerate the model's figure. The long headpiece makes her look as if she has a long neck; the heightened waist and the pencil skirt thin her down; and the heels make her legs look longer; but never have I heard of anyone who wears necklaces with 5-inch pendants that fall down past one's hips.

Again, the gloves I find very cool-looking. Hmm, maybe I have a thing for gloves.

About the critics:

Vera - has a budding interest in gloves. She has heart (maybe not for fashion) and lots of it. Follow her here!

Mel - lovable and kind, this freelance artist can bring joy to anyone--and that includes this blog! Witness more of her musings here.

Shateka - a self-described quasi-hater, she is upfront about anything and everything. See her cynical view of fashion? That's only a sample.

Shao - is discriminating when it comes to footwear. But on the whole he loves color diversity. Suck on that all-black ensembles!

All images except topmost from nymag.com; topmost screenshot from Google Images

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Reflection of the Moment: Aims and Misses

It's almost the end of the year and I'm taking stock of some important events. I should be doing reflections toward the year's end, but I'd rather have more time to undo or anticipate some things. Here's nostalgia and optimism at work:

What I Miss

1. Summer vacation - no matter how much I ranted about it, in the end I miss it. Dearly.

2. Cousin-ly bond - when my Kansanite cousins came over, I realized how much more fun it would be if they lived right here. They definitely brought the crazies.

3. Summer school - I failed to take summer school so this is a literal miss. Now I'm behind a semester. Wonk wonk.

4. Abby - she moved to Las Vegas for good reasons, but I already miss her! Well, at least she's not on the other side of the globe.

What I'm Looking Forward To

1. Posting my first September feature - it's under works but I'll reveal it when the time comes! Do stand by for updates.

2. New York Fashion Week - Spring 2011 collections en masse. What can be better than that?

3. My birthday - huge event I'm half-heartedly anticipating. Pro: I'm gonna be legal! Con: more responsibilities. Best of both worlds.

4. Visiting Abby - no matter how far away she is, I'll still visit her. Time to save some money, honey!

And if you're wondering why I have some somber-titled music for this post, don't fear! I am not in some emo phase, on the verge of cutting myself. I just like this song. Don't believe me? Go listen!

Video from youtube.com

News of the Moment: ZOMG It's Lanvin!

Yes readers, H&M's next designer collaboration will be with Lanvin. Excited to witness Alber Elbaz' drama and sophistication for the women's line? Or how about Lucas Ossendrijver's mix of casual and formal for the men's line?

I for one am super duper elated of the mere fact that Lanvin will bestow their aesthetic to a mass retailer. Or it could be the other way around as Elbaz quipped "'what intrigued me was the idea of H&M going luxury rather than Lanvin going public.'" (New York Magazine)

The collection will drop November 23, 2010. Save the date!

Image from twenty2.onsugar.com

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Event of the Moment: San Diego

Yes! I finally went on a legit vacation! So after some rants about being stagnant at home, I went with Gramps to San Diego.

It was nice to view new scenes and go people watching around SD's pier. But what really tickled my fancy was how badly dressed tourists really are. And that includes me!

Here are some prominent items tourists were wearing:

1. Teva sandals - sometimes with socks, sometimes with no socks. Either way, it looks bad.

Aerodynamic reflective sunglasses - supposed to deflect the sun's rays but somehow they're out of place. You're not in Tour de France, people!

Distraught faces - I saw myself sporting this expression when I tried boarding the trolley system. It's the face most locals love to see.

Speaking of trolleys, I thought they were trains at first because of the configuration. It's odd to see locals actually run after the "trains" because a) it is dangerous; b) it is illegal to do so in some cities and; c) there's no guarantee it's gonna wait for you.

But I will say that San Diego is a nifty, clean, charming place to live in. It's just not my scene since I'm more into the gritty stuff L.A. proudly offers. And now for pictures!

On the way to downtown with a trolley on right

Petco Park where San Diego Padres play

Mural commemorating safe return of WWII heroes

USS Midway, an aircraft carrier used in WWII. Now a museum

Star of India, a galleon

Some hotels and office buildings around the pier. My fave is the blue building to the left

P.S.: I didn't get to go to the San Diego Zoo or Sea World or Coronado Island. Maybe next time!

Friday, August 20, 2010

Now, It's Abby

Nico's friend.
what does that mean?
i hate keyboards like these. :/
but whatevaaaaaaaaaaaaaaah.
i do, i really do.
i like taking pictures.
and NICO.

So this is Rocky

The love of Patrick's life.
I have an evil twin her name is Matisse.
She abducted Patrick and tortured him half to death.
She hit his head on the concrete and forgot who I was!
It was a very sad day. He first called me a butch.
I wanted to slap him. But whatever,
Patrick was slowly recovering and getting his memory back!
Right now, as in THIS MOMENT IN TIME.
Verlotta, my long time frienemy is sitting next to us.
well next to me, sharing a chair with Patrick.
They're singing and i am typing.
Patrick is thirsty. Verlotta is making the Matisse in me come out.
i dont know why i'm writting.
dude, i dont even care about the spelling and the STUPID GRAMMAR.
i did get a freaking A- in English last year.
Mhmm, he's calling this interesting saying he's not going to post it till a long time from now.
but i'm going to press PUBLISH POST.
Rocky, NOT THE 80's BOXER. But Rocky, Patrick's
until next time i guess;;(:
Whatchaaaaaaaaa!! [END WITH A GEORGETTE LOPEZ;]

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Model of the Moment: Marcel Castenmiller

Checking at Urban Outfitters' e-mail promotion, look who I saw do the promoting! It's Marcel Castenmiller!

Not ringing any bells? Well, he's not
that famous (no male models are), but in the fashion circuit he's very well-known. He does runway for haute labels like Ann Demeulemeester, Hermès, Gucci, Kenzo, Giuliano Fujiwara because he's got the look. The indifferent grimace, the piercing eyes, and that I-can't-tell-if-he's-a-man-or-woman look.

It's nice to see him do some commercial work. I mean, I'm sure his wardrobe is filled with designer swag already, but knowing he can do mass brands keeps him grounded.

See him at Versace's Fall-Winter 2010 campaign!

Images from thefashionisto.com and pursuitist.com

Monday, August 9, 2010

Flashback of the Moment: Oh To Be Young!

I visited my long forlorn MySpace page, and look what I saw! If I remember correctly, this was in 8th grade. That was when Abby and I (probably) first met at school. Oh the joys of being young and a little bit awkward. You can totally sense that from my posture. I was "freakishly" tall, so you get the idea--it's my ugly duckling moment.

So what have you been unearthing lately?

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Collection of the Moment: Petar Petrov Spring-Summer 2011

First thing I noticed about this show was the smiling dudes! This is very uncommon especially when designers book un-muscular, boyish-looking models. Boys aside, Petrov's collection has all the essentials covered--pants, shirts, jackets--without the usual fashion frou frou.

What differentiates Petar Petrov from the rest of Paris Fashion Week is the unfussy design, eye for color (neutrals are good for sunnier climes), strong tailoring, and down-to-earth styling. Flesh and blood men can adopt the looks with ease.

I'd call it
Jil Sander lite. But the collection has layering down to the core so maybe it's more Marni lite.

Listen to the soundtrack to get a sense of why the models are sporting grins. It's pretty cheesy.

Video from vimeo.com

Saturday, July 31, 2010

Phase of the Moment: In and Out of Fashion

Way before I followed fashion, I was into some other things. I remember in elementary, I always rushed home to catch my afternoon anime. I had friends that all knew how to draw, and we would have this "sketching party" where we'd doodle anime characters. It was a lot of fun.

Soon as I hit pre-teens I began poring over PDAs--remember those? Then came this very long affair with digital cameras, which promptly ended when my dad bought me my very own.

Afterwards was this steady obsession over cellphones, specifically ones that we Americans couldn't get. (Cellphones in Asia are much better feature-wise at that time.) I still remember my ultimate favorite mobile, the oddly shaped Nokia 7280 (pictured) a.k.a. the lipstick phone for obvious reasons.

In transit to adolescence, I had a phase with cars. I guess this is most typified as "the young man's obsession." I religiously read my car magazines such as Automobile, Car and Driver, Road and Track, and ogled at showroom floors. I was also a daily visitor to Cars.com, which has an exhaustive list of automobiles and expert auto reviews.

That was then. Now I feel that my phase with fashion is starting to wane. It's not that I'm totally over fashion. It's just that my locus wouldn't be concentrated in that specific area anymore. As a matter of fact, I wouldn't be into fashion if I didn't appreciate animation, electronics and automobile design.

Image from livingroom.org

Friday, July 30, 2010

Personal Rant of the Moment: Lonely Hearts

I know I'm in vacation right now, but I seem to not have time to spend quality time with someone. A special someone if you can catch my drift.

Ever had those moments when you just want to hug someone but no one is there to hug? Or just talk to someone face to face, but still nothing? That's how I'm feeling: loneliness with a dash of boredom.

I can't wait to get out if this mood. Someone, anyone, please take me away!

But until my hero saves me, I'll bask in some nostalgic tunes. It can help heal the sorrow. I hope.

Video from youtube.com

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Video of the Moment: Fur Realz?

Actual suit on the Paris runway

Remember that all-faux-fur Chanel suit Lagerfeld sent out a few months ago? Joe Zee of Elle test drove the ensemble in the middle of summer! I say kudos to the man for taking the heat. And maybe more just by looking at people's reactions. Suffer for fashion, baby!

Also, note how he's wearing a Jansport backpack with Chanel. Nothing bad with that, right?

Image from nymag.com; video via racked.com

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Trailers of the Moment: Making the Grade

I'm literally on the cusp of insanity. Why so? For starters, I've been spending my entire vacation at home. Doing chores. Sleeping. Getting fat.

So to make an interesting day out of lameness, I delved into the world of cinema. Not making it, but just watching, enjoying and critiquing. Here is a sampler of my cinematic adventure with accompanying grade system:

"Up in the Air"

This movie deserved to be in the Oscars. It touches so many dimensions of real life that one has to wonder why it didn't snag Best Motion Picture of the Year. (Darn you "Avatar"!)

The emotional story arc is rich and compelling, and commentary about the complexity of relationships--with family, colleagues, friends, lovers, career, and self--is just mind blowing. Kudos to Anna Kendrick for playing the naive idealist! Totally empathized with her. Verdict: A

"Brideshead Revisited"

Based on the novel by Evelyn Waugh (a dude by the way), "Brideshead" is a story of one man's venture into the intriguing world of Catholic high society.

Charles Ryder, a down-to-earth artist, becomes center of attention as he befriends peculiar (but fabulous) Sebastian Flyte. Little did he know that Sebastian belongs to an aristocrat family whose unwavering faith in Catholicism is a major dealbreaker. Cue the love triangle between Charles, Sebastian and Julia (Sebastian's sister), and we have drama!

Unfortunately, forbidden love and snide remarks directed to, um, Catholicism can't save this movie. Stick to Waugh's vision, folks! Verdict: C

"Dominick and Eugene"

This gem of a movie is unbelievably underrated that I watched it at an unbelievably underrated channel. Despite it being old (hey, it's only 1988), the film clutches superb points for envisioning the unconditional brotherly love of Eugene and Dominick.

Thomas Hulce's portrayal of slightly challenged Dominick deserves laudatory mention. While Ray Liotta's Eugene is remarkable for being the conflicted yet caring brother. Minor characters should be noted for adding unbridled charm to this movie too. Verdict: B+

Image from lbcc.edu; videos from youtube.com

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Item of the Moment: Backpack Got Back

Marni, Alexander Wang, Lanvin and Patrik Ervell

Remember when you were young and had the clamoring to get the IT backpack? Not the ones with Prada or some haute label stamped on it, but the ones that have your fave cartoon plastered on the front. (Extra points if it had a clock!)

If that childhood itch went unscratched, most designers have you covered. Backpacks became the new IT accessory for Alexander Wang's Wall Street-inspired runway while Lanvin, Bottega Veneta and Patrik Ervell took advantage of its utility in the men's Fall collection. For Spring 2011, Consuelo Castiglioni of Marni furnished her man-geek with the sporty sac.

Clearly, there's some sort of budding romance between fashion and functionality. And why shouldn't it? For many seasons, designers have dabbled with the most ridiculous bag designs that barely satisfied the job description (see Dior Homme's manclutch).

Backpacks fit the bill perfectly because they're designed to swallow any item with ease. The fact that you can sling it on both shoulders is an added bonus. Just be wary of the bag's overall look. As shown above, simplicity is always key.

Images except Alexander Wang and Patrik Ervell from gq.com; Alexander Wang from polyvore.com; Patrik Ervell via stylebubble.co.uk