Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Lust Objects ~ Colorful Retro Shoes

Just a few shoes on my wish list inspired by colorful vintage looks.

 charlotte olympia lulu
Miz Mooz Fall Finley 
(I actually might have to buy these if they are comfortable. My old Miz Mooz red pumps are on their last legs.)

 Miz Mooz Fall Gwen
 Miz Mooz Fall Scarlette
 Miz Mooz Fall Percey
 Miz Mooz Fall Silas
Miz Mooz Fall Nash

Retro Rack is also on facebook where I post additional images and fashion thoughts.

Monday, July 30, 2012

Then & Now ~ Mint


1868  The Victoria & Albert Museum


Retro Rack is also on facebook where I post additional images and fashion thoughts.

Friday, July 27, 2012

Then & Now ~ Cherries


1898 Evening Dress  Jean-Philippe Worth The Metropolitan Museum of Art


Retro Rack is also on facebook where I post additional images and fashion thoughts.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Comic Con Outifts ~ What the A List Wore

Comic Con must be a terribly difficult event for stylists to select appropriate outfits. Imagine the thought process in a sorority Rachel Zoe-type's head . . .

My star is going where?
A gathering of what kind of person?
What should she wear? How the heck should I know what she should wear?
What does one wear to a massive comic book convention? 
*Insert panicky blur of designer clothing flying everywhere.*

I suspect most stylists are tempted to opt for the standard press junket outfits, then they veer in some new and odd directions. I find them worthy of analysis. Because, Fashionable Reader, I am basically a nice person but when outfits come into play I do love getting down with my catty college self. (I've put my best guess as to the reason said A-lister was at Comic Con under the photo in brackets.)

Lady Like

 Stylists thought process: let's go with ladylike, after all it's a good way to stand out.
(This hypothetical stylist is of the Gail Carriger frame of mind.)

Ginnifer Goodwin,Valentino (Once Upon A Time?); Lyndsy Fonseca, Hellers (Nikita); Michelle Williams, Giulietta (Oz the Great and Powerful)

Gail's thoughts:
  • I adore the red dress but wouldn't have gone with matched shoes, it's too bridesmaid. 
  • I enjoy the summery colors and pattern change on Lyndsy (really!? "Lyndsy"? Are we back in the 1980's corrupting perfectly decent names with erroneous "i"s and "y"s?) but I don't think showing belly is ever appropriate outside of the pool. However, this is San Diego and there isn't much belly. 
  • I like that Michelle's mod dress goes with her mod hair, but a large print on a white trapeze cut will make even a size 2 look bigger.

Middi Pencil Skirts

Stylists thought process: let's go with body conscious but not too sexy, doesn't do to torture geeks unduly.

 Ashley Greene, Michael-Kors (Twilight); Jessica Biel, Mugler (Total-Recall)

Naya Rivera, Alazzouni (Glee) ~ sigh, Glee at Comic Con?; Nikki Reed, Rodriguez (Twilight)

Gail's thoughts:
  • I love Ashley's cream dress with brown, although I worry about whites on the red carpet. I think she looks great, hair and make-up spot on, but her shoes should have been a little more delicate. On the other hand, she could be wearing these because they are comfy and sensible for Comic Con, for which I can not fault her. 
  • Jessica's choice is odd and architectural, perhaps better worn for a music award show, but I applaud a risk and this is a comic convention so . . . I even like the neon shoe. I hate the bangs in her eyes though.
  • Naya's blue skirt is fab, but the boxy top is bad, and her neon shoe is an off-match choice. Green, perhaps, instead of yellow? I do like that she drew her hair back and went with a subtle summer make up.
  • I tend to like black and white and leather, so Nikki's is OK. The shoes and hair scream 1990s to me, though, and that's never a good thing in my world.
As pencil skirts go, I would have liked to see something a little more hip and edgy from the stars, like this:

Boxy Tops

Stylists thought process: I secretly hate my client for being a skinny beeich so I'm going to stick her in something unflattering.
(You all know how I feel about boxy tops.)

 See above.

 Kristen Stewart, BCBG (Twilight); Rachael Taylor, Suno (666-Park-Avenue)

Gail's thoughts:
  • Boxy and horizontal stripes? Have mercy.
  • Boxy and cropped? Have classy?
  • Poor Kristen, she just hates events. I guess this is trendy?
  • And Rachel chose to pair pajama bottoms with a galaxy T-shirt and pointed shoes? Really? Cute hair and make up, one wonders where her sleep-over pillow is.

White Shorts

 Stylists thought process: Comic Con, is that a gathering kind of like a music festival?

 Nina Dobrev, Kidd (Vampire-Diaries); Elizabeth Reaser, Louboutin (Twilight)

Gail's thoughts:
  • Call me prudish but I just think Nina's look is too casual. It's cute enough and she carries it off but I feel like she should be on a beach somewhere.
  • Words fail to describe how much I dislike Elizabeth's outfit. I await the Fug with baited breath. Her shoes are cute though. 

Just Confusing

 Stylists thought process: Comic Con, so she should wear something comic book-ish or . . . what's that, a line of coke? Gimme!

 Jenna Ushkowitz, Blaque (Glee); Lea Michele, Stella (Glee)

 Kristin Kreuk, French-Connection (Smallville); Karen Gillan, 3 (Dr. Who)

Gail's thoughts:
  • Jenna, girl, I wore that, in the 80s, when I was 8 years old! What are you doing? Speaking of, what is Glee doing AT COMIC CON at all?
  • Lea, love the . . . shoes. But the suit? Shopping at Goodwill again, are we? And Glee at Comic Con, really, go away.
  • Kristin looks OK, but I'm confused by the choice of dress and shoes. It's just boring.
  • Karen is adorable, always, but here she also appears to have forgotten her trousers. And the sweater feels a little like its trying too hard, in a "look at me I'm down with the geeks" kind of way.

I'm So Edgy

Stylists thought process: All clients are rock stars, but we don't want her to look like she's trying too hard. Comic Con can't seem actually important to her.

 Kate Beckinsale, Rag Bone (Total-Recal); Mila Kunis, Rag Bone (Oz the Great and Powerful)

Gail's thoughts:
  • I don't know why but this look just seems like a cop out, it's so safe. But ladies both look great, from head to toe, hair make up, everything, but it feel like the thought process was: I'm just out for the evening in San Diego . . . Oh, is it Comic Con? Well, I'll just top by then, shall I?

Gail's Winners!

Emily Blunt, Dior (Looper); Tricia Helfer presenting the Eisners

Gail's thoughts:
  • I love Emily's look, ladylike without being too buttoned up, formal but still fresh enough for San Diego, and a trendy pop of neon (nod to comics?). She's tan but not too tan, her hair is off her face (although it could use a die job) and her make up is classic. Delicate little necklace. I think she looks awesomely approachable.
  • I also loved Tricia's draped a-symmetrical jersey dress. It looked comfortable and pretty and her silver shoes were stellar. Also a nice clean pony tale and simple makeup kept it chic.

I do love me some draped jersey.

Other interesting trends:
  • A general lack of jewelry, perhaps because of the perceived casualness of the event?
  • Longer hem lines, to keep rabid fanboys under control?
  • Loose hair, to hide behind?

Retro Rack is also on facebook where I post additional images and fashion thoughts.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Comic Con Outfit Special Bonus ~ DIY Silly Hat

So when I was in Portland on book tour a little while ago, I had two signings back-to-back in the same location, Fashionable Reader. Don't ask. Some adorable young ladies met me the first night and we got to chatting about knitting and crochet. Well, off they went and the next night returned only to present me with the cutest little crochet petit fours.

Well, I loved them and they made appearances at several tea events as decorative table elements. Then I saw this advertisement:

I was inspired! What else to do with a fiber art petit four but turn it into a hat!

So I took the larger of the two, some button thread, and a hairband I picked up for cheap at Ross and just stitched it on.

I must say that the hat was very much admired at Comic Con and this is my new favorite thing. I have a whole collection of headbands from Ross and my new instinct whenever I see a silly object is . . . can I make a tiny hat out of it? I'm getting very Ivy-ish in my old age in wanting to put everything on my head.

See a silly object? Just ask yourself. What would Ivy do? Forget Tim Gunn's "Make it Work." Make it into a hat!

And then drink tea wearing it, of course!

Retro Rack is also on facebook where I post additional images and fashion thoughts.