Monday, May 7, 2012

My tresses: the accidental find

When I woke up Monday morning, my hair decided it was a bad hair day. After a lil' prayer and some much needed oiling and moisturising, I came out with a perm (not a chemical one, but an accidental one), complete with glycerine-effects (I'll let you ponder on why stickers such as: "I like you hair but not on my window" comes from).

Being the eternal optimist I am, I named it "The Diana Ross" (on a minor scale). Ditch, switch or "we have a winner", that is the question... 

For now, let me channel one of the original Divas, we like it!
The Diana Ross
Ps. Do pardon the image, self taken images (at high res. aka "see my pores?") are never flattering but I could not not share this one though (yikes, and the half closed eye?) Oh well...


It's a trend well-documented around the world and South Africa is no different. High profile designers are collaborating with big retail houses to launch diffusion collections (read: mass production) at a cost that leaves consumers smiling.

Mass-produce, affordable (but trendy) retailer, Legit, has collaborated with design maestro David Tlale to produce a winter range featuring separates and dresses that include LBDs, Cocktail dresses (some with a roman flair), coats, Tshirts, denim and skirts. Legit is no stranger to collaborations with, previously, South African television personalities and this time, a designer with stripes to prove it is the next one in line. 

Since the Z-named Spanish retailer enter the scene (which left me a little worried about South African shopping trends), Legit has stepped up and taken the challenge to go head-to-head with the alien-retailer by following an international trend that has, for instance, seen the likes of Versace for H&M collections disappearing from rails - long before people once could finish a tweet mentioning the opening and certainly filling up the pocket for Donatella's next collagen and-botox fix Versace. I certainly hope a similar trend will be seen in South Africa and several more collaborations of this nature will be seen with Legit and other retailers who are with their weight in... erm... threads. And to that, I sincerely congratulate Legit on this venture. WELL DONE!

To keep you smiling, a lil' birdie tells me the collection ranges to the top bracket being an affordable R400 for an original Tlale design, retailing under the name Van Der Tlale.
David Tlale in a coat from the Van Der Tlale (VDT) collection with Sonia Booth (wearing Thula Sindi)
Celebrity guests included this lady with a wonderful trench coat dress (how Suzaan Heyns 2011 is it?) and Dj Black Coffee

Although the clothes lack the well-loved Tlale signature, that should not deter anyone from buying as the clothes still pack a few punches (albeit from an infant fist, if the collection is to be compared to a typical Tlale range, but whoever questioned that David cannot produced without theatrics and bling-tricks will really have to lap up their words).

Some my firm favourites from the collection included:
The LBD served with a kick in the form of an exaggerated torso
Stunning Coat with heavy-duty buckles detail batwing coat
Greek/Roman persuasion: a few drapes for all bodies
Simple but gorgeous. Tailor it somewhere and this is a winner!
Lace skirt
Pleather detailed skirt
Pleather tan short-shorts and gold-embellished shirt
At R400 a pop being the top end, why opt out? Now to find a Legit store in Joburg North, sigh...

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Ode to summer from my lens - part 1

I'm usually not a fan of Summer. It's strange season that encourages minimalism, light clothing (when I'm a fan of textured) and licenses people to reveal more than they should. Things i do not necessarily subscribe to as far as fashion is concerned. But this season was different - no, the above was still in place - but there was something simple and beautiful about this season... 

Below are a few snapshots - very random - of how my season panned out. In short - I think this is what the summer of '69 (fast forwarded to 2011/12 ) was all about (forgive the layout and sequence of images, blogger is showing me flames! Changes in the back-end and blah-blah-blah, in short, I can't do much editing or moving of pictures)
Main Street Life Rooftop, every Sunday. Perfect time to prep for Monday: cocktails and drinkies on the roof of some building downtown Joburg
Playing Rebel at an All White Party hosted by Marie Claire for World Water Day: spotting a gifted Silk robe (which I passed off as a Kimono), an Ituen Bassi bag, David Tlale meggings (ahem), Kurt Geiger loafers and this seasons watch brand: ICE!
Partying in a Hotel Apartment with some of my favourite Girls
Mlle Funi in her all her (thrifted) glory at Neighbour Goods market - if you're ever in need of a shopping pal, this is your girl. Check out her blog for more thrifted and frugalisted goodies here

Wednesday, April 18, 2012


If you were a goat, would you?
Okay, that was silly but this pic made my miserable morning.

Sidenote: I did not take this pic and I do not know where it was taken


Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Bring on the Masters - SA Fashion Week

Suzaan Heyns

As you know, I received feeds from all sorts of sources regarding Suzaan's collection and collaboration with PPC cement (see previous write-up here) in the build up to her collection titled: "Reimagine cement"- but none of it really prepared me for this (ps. play the game I did during the collection, "spot the cement"):

The entrance to the hall featured cemented faced gentlemen

Featuring men in skirts (and I urge you to read this article), soft and fluid textures made hard and structured (courtesy of PPC), soft leather dipped cement and shaped... in short, it was a brilliant display of contrasting (manipulated) textures and materials; from leather to chiffon and cotton.

The collection featured several simple separates, beautiful classic cuts (with a few dazzles of gender-bending and unexpected detailing), simple and everyday-wearable - a first for a Suzaan Heyns runway collection, but certainly not without any joy.

The colour palette ranged from nudes, beige, off-whites to greys and blues - an interesting combination for spring/summer given how colour-bursts are the more popular choice for this season - then again there'd be nothing unique about the brand if it subscribed to pop-demands.

Go for:
Layered men's pants
A cement cape or scarf (wonder if those are for sale)
Leather waistcoats

Clive Rundle

As I cannot really capture the collection in sentences, it's best I list the interest, pile on images and let you mellow and allow yourself to bask in the masters work (heck, I shot up to add to the standing ovation squad with the final walk-through, grinning like an idiot for the delight i experienced)...Before I head into the ten-point list, I must note that the past few odd years saw Clive sending out self-made fabric which, on its own, is commendable but lacked the next step which was what was witnessed in his ss2012 collection. I was awed!
The collection's touch points:
1. Nothing in the collection was symmetrical, intentionally so - love!
2. Deconstruction done to perfection - Love't!
3. Asian touches with African finishes - Love't!
4. Bold, cheerful colour usage - always a delight to see for a spring/summer collection
5. Sheer material and chiffon with intricate detailing - including hole burns in chiffon (as Dion Chang, of FluxTrends, said when we caught up later: Who does that?) - Love't!
6. Voluminous, layering and light at the same time - a clear understanding of fabrication which is always a delight - Love't!
7. Styling perfection. I spoke to a few fashion editors after the show to ask how they would interpret and restyle the collection for their own editorials and the consensus was: If you play around with anything in the collection, you run the risk of ruining what is already perfect or as one ed. said (and my personal funny moment): reinterpreting for my fashion pages will be the difference between being employed and unemployed. - Love't!
8. Gorgeous separates: Obi belts and deconstructed bolero-esque coats.
9. The collection followed no trend: it was a raw interpretation of the ideal world in which the designer sees spring-summer, the difference between an artist and a designer in my view.
10. It's Clive at his best!

Go For:
The aforementioned "gorgeous separates"
Sheer and chiffon dresses

Images by Simon Deiner of SDR and Ivan Naude

Monday, April 9, 2012

Bring on the Men - SA Fashion Week

House of Ole, by Ole Ledimo

The collection comprised of men's and women's clothes all in classic men's tailoring - can you say YSL's Le Smoking?

Beautiful and effortlessly simple (with a daring touch in the men's line). The colour palette, with teal and sea greens dominating, also appealed to me. My personal favourites from the collection were the printed pants (1st image), the bottle green jacket with print detail and the formal slippers in colours ranging from maroon to violet (which Ole has been producing/stocking for a few years now). Good job!

Go for:
cheerful printed pants with paint-blot and paisley details
Formal slippers for gents
ladies: cravats and ascots to execute an effortless androgynous look (hot trend for winter)


Impressive: formal denim dungarees, (off)-white-wash ensemble and print patches placed strategically on pants and tops for maximum effect - playing into the print-on-print trend forecasted for spring/summer. Simple staples with lovely tweaks: formal shorts with detail to create a little depth, cut-outs to create a colour-block effect (see the pinstripe shirt below) and flattering-length formal-cut shorts.

Disappointing: the cut on the shorts was a little off: pants are not meant to ride up on the inner-seam as one walks - but that's a minor fit issue (hopefully)
Go for:
tribal printed patched garments (start collecting them now) and denim dungarees.

Naked Ape
Different from his usual aesthetic in the cuts and material but remaining true to what's expected from Sheldon: finished and styled to perfection, free of gimmicks and razzmatazz.
Impressive: the opening created by the cut of double breast coats to "unveil" the full length of pants.
The colour palette: beige, shades of gray (from slate to Cadet gray), camouflage greens and cool reds (crimson and scarlet shades).
The collection is non-trend but echos what men really want: beautiful staples. Sheldon delivered but (and this really is just my humble opinion) failed to peak interest - whether that's good or bad is irrelevant, the clothes are made well, look great and are ready to fly off the rails.

Good collection, but quite boring at the same time.
Go for:
the blazers and trench coats - the overall double breast design is pretty neat,
for lack of better words.

Palse Homme
Collection title: Holy Demons
The collection featured a mix of good (and very interesting) ideas with a few hitches in tailoring, fit and questionable styling.
The clothes, terrific as an idea as they may be, also had costume-like elements, especially the only jacket that caught my attention (red and navy below) which had a bell-boy aesthetic -- which i'm far from being opposed to.
Palse Homme also touched on the upcoming spring/summer collection of florals and prints (ps. the trend will be print on print all matchy-matchy, I'm personally looking forward to it) - the most impressive from the collection being the black and red tartan combo - again finished off with questionable styling in the form of hideous shoesGo for:
the tartan mix combo
suit jackets with beautiful cuts (but pop into the Narain Samy brothers, review below, to get it beautiful fit)
the underwear

Narain Samy
It's always interesting to come across designers who are not usually hyped up and yet produce quality products like none.
Though not much is known about the designing duo, we do know that they are from a family with years of experience in fashion - tailoring being their speciality - and this was evident in the collection.

Featuring not-a-single-misfit outfit, tailored and fitted like a condom (no, seriously). The collection, however lacked direction but the individual pieces more than compensated for the throw-everything-in which, I believe, was the concept of the 12 (odd)-piece collection. The colour palette featured nudes, taupes, greens and whites with accessories in yellow, reds and purple - strange sounding but fabulous!

Menswear, without tricks of female-aesthetics, was made exciting. Go for:
tailored suits, obviously.
the male romper with going-on-safari tailoring

Roman Handt
For a dash of something crazy, a trip on a trip and uber-cool; Roman Handt's collection (with Cloche hats) was a good mix of layering (mesh on fabrics), a bit of fabric manipulation and design detail neither popular in female nor male mainstream collections/lines and that made it pop.
Imagine a wild-wild-west story in cray neons and acid colours; cray and DeGorge!Go for:
Accessories - all of them! Neoprene-looking material bags with origami lines, belts and the voluminous scarfs.
Pants: detailed to perfection with fantastic overlaying of materials.
Hats: if you're a hat person, Cloche makes beautiful costume-y hats - wearable nonetheless. Pity my heads too big for hats (trust me, I've tried the Large ones, nothing fits) - which brings me to my point of: what the hell does one size fits all mean when it comes to hat sizes?

Images by Simon Deiner and Ivan Naude