Friday, September 12, 2008

Fashion Week: 3.1 Phillip Lim

Fashion is all about embellishments. This season, Phillip Lim went head-over-heals with ruffles. Channeling Pedro Soler with his Spanish influence, Lim's Spring 2009 collection reflects his signature detail-oriented aesthetics, with a strong love of ruffles ruffles ruffles.

The cascading layers appear in the back flap of a chiffon trench coat, tiered on the hems of short military jackets, and floating down knit dresses. Tops and vests came in grey sequin but were mixed with wearable cuffed trousers. A military vest was paired with a short-sleeve shirt with strong shoulders and cuffed black trousers. The menswear line comprised of double-breasted jackets and tapered trousers.

It is a collection that's departing slightly from his wearable philosophy and almost border-line couture. Similar to the Spanish influence where big and bold ruled, his separates are anything but ordinary.

Photos from top: Phillip Lim Spring 2009 collection.

Photo source: Edith Moy,

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Fashion Week: Gottex

"Anchors away" is the theme of Gottex's Spring 2009 collection, as designer Gideon Oberson presented a dizzying 69 pieces collection that takes the audience from St. Tropez to Porto Cervo. The color palette this season has been very much inspired by the Mediterranean, says Oberson. While as a final touch, 18 karat gold details are added to the swimsuits with amazing cutouts and accented details.

Gottex has always been a fun presentation to watch. With its dazzling array of looks paired with bright but floating pareo, the swimsuits are not just suits themselves but chic accessories to the body. It seems that in Oberson's perspective, the Gottex woman is a fun-loving woman enjoying her time under the sun.

Photos from top: Gottex Spring 2009 collection.

Photo source:

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Fashion Week: Michael Kors

To find good American sportswear, Michael Kors is your man. This season Kors paid homage to everything that represent nostalgic Americana -- you'll find wearable separates such as circle skirts and track suits done in bright stripes, polka dots, and feel-good gingham. This is very much a collection reflecting the good ol' days of the 50s and 60s when America enjoyed its post-war prosperity. Everything is bright and big; it is a collection that reflects much optimism and hope for the future.

Swimsuits in black and white polka dots are paired with circular skirts cinched at the waist. Tracksuits came in silk with bright blue and black pin-stripes. Dresses were reminiscent of the housewives 50s dresses with bright red or black gingham. A few sheath in bold black and white and jackets remind us of the Kennedy years when Jackie Kennedy (not O) donned her politically correct outfits while standing by her husband's side.

Kors' inspiration came from the summers of Portofino -- but whatever the mood he wanted to convey, this is a collection that very much reflects the political climate as of late, especially in election year.

Photos from top: Michael Kors Spring 2009 collection, Michael Kors at backstage, Backstage note to models, Models walking on the catwalk.

Photo source:, Edith Moy.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Fashion Week: Ports 1961

For Spring 2009, Ports 1961's designer Tia Cibani found inspiration from the most unlikely places -- Canadian artist Emily Carr, whose works have inspired Cibani to design a collection based on the Canadian Pacific Northwest.

Colors such as yellow, red and purple dominated the collection, with a palette reminiscent of the sky at dawn. The silhouettes are boxy with a play in proportions that elongates the body. The lines are highlighted with embellishments such as frayed paper yarns and silk fringes.

It is a strong collection that mixes elegance with sophistication. These are clothing that's not for the faint of the heart, as Cibani's aesthetic plays on the subtle but intelligence in design.

Cowboy Junkies also made a guest appearance at the show by providing live music.

Photos from top: Ports 1961 Spring 2009 collection.

Photo source: Imaxtree.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Model.Live: The Good Reality TV Show

It is hard to find good TV nowadays as the medium is blanketed by slews of bad reality-TV shows. This is not the case with Vogue.TV's latest venture, Model.Live, a show that documents the rise and fall of three upcoming models. It is reality-tv at its best -- and the way it should be, as the show follows the journey of the models as they fight their way to the top in the harsh terrain we call the modeling industry.

The heroines of the show are Cato, Madeline and Austria -- three girls who came from different backgrounds but with one common goal: to be successful in the modeling business. In hope of having a chance to walk the runways during New York Fashion Week, these girls have to endure long hours and harsh criticisms by industry insiders, not to mention self-sacrifices and their need to leave their homes and families at a ripe young age.

The series depicts a surprisingly honest view to a business where looks and glamor are paramount to success. It also shows the more human side of models, who similar to the rest of us, have the same insecurity issues and lead ordinary lives. The models featured all had humble, ordinary backgrounds, with a strong sense of independence and the support of loving families. This perspective is very much in contrast with the glamor and finicky that describes the fashion industry, where most associate models with immaturity and shallowness.

If you'd like to learn more about the industry, forget about watching the bad reality tv such as the likes of Top Model. This is the show for you.

(Catch Model.Live every Friday on Vogue.TV.)

Fashion Week: BCBG Max Azria

Grecian goddess seems to be the dominant theme of BCBG Max Azria's Spring 2009 presentation, as designer Lubove Azria sent down the runway a collection of dreamy jerseys and silks in versions of short dresses and jumpsuits. The collection, subdued and subtle in use of colors, appears to evolve around a T-shirt dress that's draped and cut in multiple versions that evokes mystery and sophistication.

Strong accents such as a short metallic jacket (ruched up at the sleeves) or wide belts at the waist tie the looks together. The collection reminds us of ThreeAsFour's signature asymetry or last season's Alexandre Herchcovitch neutral dresses with bold colors peaking out from the linings. Playful rompers in feminine silk that ruched at all the right places also offer a suitable alternatives to the dresses.

Overall, BCBG Max Azria seems to deliver another season of wearable couture for the Goddesses in all or us.

Photos from top: Max Azria Spring 2009 Collection, Lubove Azria taking a bow with husband Max Azria.

Photo source: Imaxtree.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Fashion Week: Be Eco Chic Event

Carrying on last season's Green movement, Fashion Week kicked off with a fashion show raising eco-friendly awareness at the Museum of Natural History, New York. Hosted by Sierra Club and supermodel Angela Lindvall, the Be EcoChic fashion show promotes the use of eco-sensitive fabrics and recycling seasons-old fashion to make the old seems new.

The show tapped quite a slew of celebrities for runway appearances, including Lauren Hutton, Dominique Swain and Alek Wek to name a few. Designers participating include the eco-friendly labels Edun and Linda Loudermilk, and a few surprising ones such as Azzedine Alaia (vintage), Vena Cava in green recycled crepe de chine, and Carmen Marc Valvo. All materials used are either recycled or made with organic materials.

In addition, Project GreenHouse was also invited to design an eco-lifestyle lounge for the celebrities and VIPs, enjoying the sustainable and reusable decor and furnishings.

Photos from top: Eco-Chic fashion show finale and participants, Hosts Angela Lindvall and Sierra Club's Carl Pope, High School Musical's Olesya Rulin in Organics by John Patrick, Patti Hansen in Nicole Miller recycled cropped jacket, Museum of Natural History turned fashion venue.

Photo source: Edith Moy.

Monday, September 1, 2008

Spring 2009 NY Fashion Week Preview

It's September, meaning, Fashion Week is upon us again! As per industry custom, New York will kick off the Spring 2009 fashion presentations, followed by London, Milan and lastly Paris. The Fashionable Matilda's Diary is once again covering the New York shows with unique insights in fashion, style, and front-row gossips! Stay tuned...

A number of new designers will grace their presence at Bryant Park this season. A few notables include Australian designers Michel Angel and Aurelio Costarella, Asian designers Thuy Diep and Zheng Luo of OmniaLuo, who will be marking debut shows at The Salon. Downtown darling Charlotte Ronson will also present her debut show at the Tent this season.

Sponsors include its usual roster of DHL, MAC Cosmetics, Judith Ripka, W Hotels, joined by beverage sponsors Rioja wine, Perini and Bawls energy drink. Brazilian flip-flop maker Havianas will again showcase its sandal customizing booth inside the tents. The station will open at various hours throughout the week.

Go to Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week website for show schedule and more information.