Tuesday, February 26, 2013

The Hats Of London And Milan Street Chic Files, Fall 2013.

With both London and Milan Fashion Weeks for Fall 2013 are over itt is now all about Paris: traditionally it delivers the best and thrills us with more visual eye candy to last the entire season until the next Fashion Week comes around. I noticed that something slightly shifted (yet again) with in the fashion industry. I mean "Street Chic files" which are now almost the official part of any Fashion Week: a prelude, an appetizer if you will to any fashion show in New York, London, Milan or Paris. I somehow feel that all that I see now is what has been worn, done and shown the season before. The same faces, the same poses and very little style. Don't get me wrong: there are some great examples of those who dress for the thrill of dressing but they are far and few in between. The dominant lead now take top fashion bloggers who turned the entire idea of street chic so brilliantly preserved by the images of Scott Schuman back in 2005 into a sales pitch. Now it is far less about expressing your style and far more about encouraging designers to give out free merchandise. The innocence of it all was lost.
I know, I get it: in modern fashion what we see on the runway is a subject of conspicuous wealth. The price of designer items are at all time high. I don't know who can afford to buy exclusive items every single season to secure the spot of the moment caught by fashion photographers. Well, maybe Anna Dello Russo but even she looked somewhat washed out and unenthusiastic this season. Anna is getting tired and everyone else is getting tired of her. I think the game is coming to an end like all games do at some point or another. If what we see on the runway is a subject of conspicuous wealth than off the runway it is a subject of conspicuous consumption. Ability to consume is also at all time high. I see impostors all over the fashion scene, "kids with money" sporting the latest runway looks down to the bobby pin. Everyone seems to forget that Style is something very different. Style is something very unique and can not be substituted by simply consuming designer outfits. It used to be interesting to see how the runway look filtered down creative stylish minds translated into the street chic... but no longer. I look at Street Chic files now and I see "sales pitch" written all over it. In any event, I am still choosing to Blog about Street Chic files for those few who still maintain original point of view on Fashion. I might get tired of endless sales pitches but I never get tired of hats! All images are courtesy Tommy Ton, Phil Oh, Diego Zuko and Zhanna Romashka.

Friday, February 22, 2013


 Today I am posting the images of  "Vertigo" - another hat of my new "Sanctum" Collection. "Vertigo" was designed "out of the blue" - I had no plans for it until one day when I caught myself thinking that my head is literally spinning with ideas and emotions. The sensation was so powerful, I simply could not resist creating a hat  that would embody that "creative vertigo glamour" the way I felt it was relevant at the time. I always remember brilliant quote by Valentina:  "I believe that glamour, like every mystery, in the end is all about the pure science of proportion". To me it is almost never about symmetry: it is more about unexpected angles, the quality of materials and details that go into the creation of the hats. I never, actually, saw full dramatic effect of "Vertigo" while it was on the mannequin. It is only when we were shooting the Collection and I fitted our model - "Vertigo" came to life. 
'Vertigo" became more than just a hat, it taught me how to appreciate the effect of the "partial face concealment" in hat design. Powerful effect.. I think, I now understand why Isabella Blow loved hats that would hide her face, deliberately destructing anyone from really seeing it. The effect is not only powerful, it creates it ALL: theater, drama, comedy, transformation - all lives with in one hat. "Vertigo" became one of the favorite hats to order. Just with in the past month I created 6 of them: four in black, one in red and one in white. Black remains my favorite version.
 "Vertigo" demanded only the best all the way through production starting form the careful choice of 9 different types of fabrics (including french veiling, Chantilly lace, silk Illusion just to name a few) to the creation of the jeweled encrusted and embroidered center. One of the greatest hats I had a privilege to work with!

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

The Hats Of New York Runways: NYFW Fall-Winter 2013.

There is something very special happened this past Fashion Week Fall-Winter 2013 in New York: for the very fist time in a very long time we have been treated to unusually generous display of millinery. It wasn't just few random designers who chose to show hats as a part of their Collections, this time it seemed like well over 40% of designers (against usual 10%) included hats in their runway shows and presentations.There were so many hats that it was impossible for me to include all of them. I personally happen to think this, with in itself,  is a cause for celebration. :-)  Hats are not going anywhere,at least, not in 2013.  Bypassing mild beanie poisoning (yes, what on Earth is going on with gazillion beanies!?) with a slight side effect of fedora overdose (did I just get sick of fedoras too?), I could not stop marveling at the array of absolutely gorgeous hats walking down New York runways: Oscar de la Renta in collaboration with John Galliano sent out tall cloches, the minute I saw the first exit, I knew - Galliano is written all over it. Among my top favorites are also hats by Bibhu Mohapatra, flirty pieces by Anna Sui, hats by Band of Outsiders, Thom Browne, Threeasfour. I thought, that there was very strong presence of reference to the famous Russian Cossack's hats, I felt shadow of  Dr.Zhivago  in some hats presented by Ralph Lauren, Donna Karan, Milly and Misha Nonoo. There were more than few forgettable hats too, in some cases it felt almost like designer decided to fill in the blanks without giving too much thought to the shape or color. Fortunately, there were not too many of those.Ultimately NYFW left me inspired, almost suspended in the air with inpsiration.  I hope you will enjoy the hats of NYFW Fall 2013 as much as I did. :-)
Oscar de La Renta, NYFW Fall-Winter 2013.

Anna Sui, NYFW Fall-Winter 2013

Alexander Wang, NYFW Fall-Winter 2013

Assembly, NYFW Fall-Winter 2013

Band Of Outsiders, NYFW Fall-Winter 2013.

BCBG Max Azria, NYFW Fall-Winter 2013.

Bibhu Mohapatra, NYFW Fall-Winter 2013.

Charlotte Ronson, NYFW Fall-Winter 2013.

Donna Karan, NYFW Fall-Winter 2013.

Erin Fetherston, NYFW Fall-Winter 2013.

Giulietta, NYFW Fall-Winter 2013.

Hervé Léger By Max Azria, NYFW Fall-Winter 2013.

Kate Spade, NYFW Fall-Winter 2013.

Kenneth Cole Collection, NYFW Fall-Winter 2013.

Lyn Devon, NYFW Fall-Winter 2013.

Michael Kors, NYFW Fall-Winter 2013.

Milly, NYFW Fall-Winter 2013.

Misha Nonoo, NYFW Fall-Winter 2013.

Ohne Titel, NYFW Fall-Winter 2013.

Patrik Ervell, NYFW Fall-Winter 2013.

Rachel Zoe, NYFW Fall-Winter 2013.

Ralph Lauren, NYFW Fall-Winter 2013.

Rebecca Minkoff, NYFW Fall-Winter 2013.

Ruffian, NYFW Fall-Winter 2013.

Thom Browne, NYFW Fall-Winter 2013.

Threeasfour, NYFW Fall-Winter 2013.

Timo Weiland,NYFW Fall-Winter 2013. 

Tocca, NYFW Fall-Winter 2013.

Tommy Hilfiger, NYFW Fall-Winter 2013.

Tracy Reese, NYFW Fall-Winter 2013.

Trina Turk,  NYFW Fall-Winter 2013.

Wood Wood, NYFW Fall-Winter 2013.

Zero + Maria Cornejo1, NYFW Fall-Winter 2013.

All images are courtesy of Style.com