A day in the year of a ‘Lifelong Learner!’

NEED an autumn break more than ever, but bothered about the planet. A vegan lifestyle may be the way forward but perhaps I should reconsider whether cruising around the globe for my next voyage is strictly ballroom!

Today I’m running ‘Cospa Gee’ in Akihabara for my friend. She’s a geek but a clever organised otaku. Her followers often create wardrobes from scratch, but  ‘Cospa Gee’s off-the-rack costumes, ranging from Sailor Moon to Final Fantasy fare, accessories and wigs are here for me to sell until it’s night-time in Tokyo.

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To keep me relaxed, as I dress for the day, I recall with utter mindfulness the moment I saw the coat which will take me from shopping mall to gorgeous city bar.

There it was among the cherubs, the gilding, the giant chandeliers, in the Paris neo-Renaissance Hôtel de Ville worlds away from the modern techniques long part of Issey Miyake’s output. Block-coloured red and yellow lights illuminated the balcony where sound artist EiWada manipulated radio frequencies for a live soundtrack.

Creative director,  Yoshiyuki Miyamae, took colours from the Aurora Borealis, northern lights, together with the ‘Pleats, Please’ legacy developed by the house. And for their AW /17 collection Miyake, collaborating with Dutch shoe label United Nude, kitted out models in bootie trainers with white corrugated soles, and ankle strap flats with chamelon-like soles that change colour from different angles.

This should take me from work to play, seamlessly, from demented shop keeper to ‘Silver Bullet’ sipping sophisticat at the ‘Oribe.’

 

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The little singing milliner’s latest looks!

SOMETIMES a look is so subtly suggestive of a label’s legend that it’s difficult to spot the brand at first. Not this time, however! Even dressing transparently leaves no room for doubt.  This can’t be anything but Chanel!

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From the label’s 2018 Spring collection, the hat reflects designs based on simple styles and shapes from housekeepers, nannies and nurses uniforms of the times. Gabrielle Chanel saw the looks as more chic and flattering than the fussy overdecorated chapeaux worn by 1920s middle class conventional women.

Chanel experimented with textiles. Using transparent plastics and acrylics echoes the founder’s practice. Tweedy texture of the jacket continues a tradition based on Coco’s connections to English and Scottish aristocrats.

I love the way Lagerfeld and his team enchant us with new ways of seeing Fashion without losing sight of their original inspirations.

 

 

Paris – City of flowers and lights!

‘I want to be there, NOW!’ to quote Axel Sheridan.cafe-de-flore

It might have been fun in 1954 with Barthes but in Summer 2015 I was on my way but I had to cry off.  I will make do with a Chanel presentation in London this July and maybe I can make Paris somehow, before 2018.

‘What was it about her face?” thought Roland Barthes sitting in Café Flore, Boulevard Saint-Germain, Paris, after seeing Audrey Hepburn in the first French screening of ‘Roman Holiday’ on April 4th, 1954. Surrounded by Alain Robbe-Grillet, Michel Butor, Françoise Sagan, Nathalie Sarraute, Romain Gary, Yves Saint Laurent, Pierre Bergé, Marcel Rochas, Gunnar Larsen, Givenchy, Lagerfeld, Paco Rabanne, Guy Laroche, Tristan Tzara, Alberto Giacometti, Dali, Jacques Lacan, inspiration came thick and fast for Barthes.

Between 1954 and 1956 his stunningly provocative and most influential text, ‘Mythologies,’ observing cinema, advertising, fashion magazines, motor shows, began challenging ideas about Hollywood, striptease, steak, wrestling, wine, and film forever.

 Born in 1915, Barthes has become the ‘go-to’ guy for story angles and inspiration for 21st century art, media, advertising, fashion professionals and his reputation today rivals that of any of his Parisian contemporaries.

Of Fashion he wrote that it became an industrial synthesis between its making, and its selling. He recognised the contradiction, inherent in the industry, of Fashion being readily available for the many, without losing its ability to raise stakes or status for an individual.

Tomorrow I’ll write about Parc Citroen, Parc Asterix and the pack of peanut butter sandwiches!