A Sense of Italian Chic

Friday, January 30, 2015

“We are believers in maximalism,” Tomasso Aquilano once said that backstage, moments before a runway show that was eventually splattered with baroque elements that reminisced aristocratic maidens of the past. Together with Roberto Rimondi, they make up Aquilano.Rimondi, an Italian house of nuanced exuberance and contemporary design.

The design duo first met at Max Mara where they started out as consultants before moving on to equally established and commercial brands like Gianfranco Ferrè and Fay, where they are still creative directors to this day. Thus, you could sense that contemporary appeal underneath the innovative layers of their collections that meld design and commercial viability. Intricate patterns, refined fabrics, and an unexpected vibrancy, their foundation years have certainly paid off.

Seasonal or not, Aquilano.Rimondi has always been a brand of the unexpected. “I try to distance myself from what is seasonal and think further ahead. That helps me to be in a dimension that is a bit more detached, and figure out what is next. It’s a surprise,” Roberto Rimondi remarked. And surprisingly, these surprises have somehow managed to pop up in various industry trend reports season after season, a sign of relevance in a highly saturated and competitive market.

Their flirtation with art continued this season for Resort 2015. But no, it wasn’t any artist or an art style that provoked them. This time, they looked into the artistry of a garden. It wasn’t an ordinary garden, mind you. This one had frogs – that came from a pond, perhaps. There might even have been rolling waves, or so we imagine. The organic panels of cheerful colours and asymmetrical peplums certainly implied that.

The starting point was however, a simple striped shirting fabric, or rather a pair of striped silk pajamas. We must be dreaming in our sleep. Bold combinations in modern silhouettes, that is what this Aquilano.Rimondi dream is about. There was a lot at play here. Sportif prints and streetwear vibes showed up in palettes of lilac and aquamarine, albeit engulfing the green of the grass.

It was a clever idea, a clever sense of nonchalance where flowers bloom when you least expect it. On one hand, it felt that they were trying to do too much but the overall message was clear – relaxed femininity signaling through a bed of wisteria flowers.

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Tips and Tricks
5 Ways to Look Taller

Tuesday, January 27, 2015
Curated specially for petite women, here are 5 tips and tricks on how to look taller; featuring the likes of Gianvito Rossi, Herve Leger, Issa, Richard Nicoll, and many more. Have a look!

The first tip is an easy one: wear a single colour from head to toe. A unicolor outfit gives the an optical illusion of an elongated body with a single vertical line straight up and down. This Richard Nicoll jumpsuit scores extra marks with an accompanying belt to cinch the waist in for a defining silhouette. Jumpsuits are your new best friend!

Pointy pumps or not, a low-cut vamp is your best bet. This is the part of the shoe that cuts across the front of your foot. Expose as much of it as possible to visually lengthen your legs. Be sure to match your skin tone, avoid ankle-straps, and if you are wearing jeans, make sure the hemline hits your ankle.

Oversized handbags have always overwhelmed petite women – quite literally. A petite woman should always be mindful of that. Instead, scale down with pint-sized bags that are proportionate to your body. Be it a mini clutch or a small cross-body satchel or even a right sized top-handle bag; make the smart choice!

Whether shorts, jeans, or pencil skirts, go for styles that you can wear high-waisted. Elevate your waistline to just above your belly button and pick streamlined cuts that will make your legs look slimmer. If you are choosing a skirt, tuck your top in and make sure the hemline sits around your knee-level for a universally flattering silhouette.

A visual illusion, that is exactly what a plunging v-neckline brings to view. It elongates the torso, making it look leaner to the eye. So don’t be afraid to show off a little skin, because that is what makes this look work so well. Bonus points if you have got a little something to show off.

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Ladurée Beauté
A Very French Affair

Friday, January 23, 2015

Today, we welcome the arrival of the French. Founded in 1862 by Louis-Ernest Ladurée as a bakery shop on a quaint street in Paris, Ladurée was finally transformed into a pâtisserie in 1871 through a chance turn of events. But it was only in the 1930s where Ladurée finally rose in prominence when Ladurée’s grandson had a genius idea of delicately squashing a creamy ganache filling in between two macaron shells to create the first ever double-decker macaron.

From there, Ladurée blossomed to offer a plethora of treats. Starting with tea salons in the 1930s, where ladies of the day would mingle, the brand now sells a variety of delicatessen, chocolates, beauty products and delightful gifts. The best of them all: the Ladurée Beauté line of elegant and refined delights that you can come home to.

Immerse yourself with the à la mode designs and lovely scents of Ladurée from the comforts of your private space. These scents come in the form of candles, made out of mineral and vegetal wax that is fitted in a beautifully crafted matte china biscuit pot with a white cameo of the famous Ladurée logo embossed on the front. The scents run the gamut from sweet notes of flowers in the sun to peppery and spicy concoctions. The names too, have a certain je ne sais quoi quality that is redolent of all things French.

With each candle burning for approximately 55 hours, these pint-sized cuties are certainly yours to be savoured. Apart from scented candles, the Laudré Beauté line also offers a home fragrance collection where sophisticated Parisian fragrances are bottled in round bottles with a very traditional pump.

Past the signature collections of Ladurée’s perfumed candles, comes a limited edition range of Ladurée Lucky Charms candles. Packaged in charming little boxes that are decorated with colourful illustrations, each of these candles is attached to a city, and is symbolic in their own way. The basis comes from the journeys of the Ladurée brand to countries all over the world. The interlacing point is of course, an unmistakable French muse.

A reminder of the time you spent in Paris, perhaps?


Yigal Azrouël
The Sexy Urbanite

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

There is sexy and then there is Yigal Azrouël, who understands that sexiness – the tasteful kind – is often very subtle. It is a refreshing thought that is ever so palpable in the Yigal Azrouël aesthetic. At once, the Yigal Azrouël look might seem a little unadventurous, especially in his favourite palette of black and white of late, but it is his signature body-flattering silhouettes in variegated textiles that really make the brand ticks.
Azrouël is one who knows exactly what his customer wants – contemporary and understated wardrobe pieces with a simple edge. The Yigal Azrouel woman is the sexy urbanite who makes her rounds around the cosmopolitan streets of the world. There is nothing too fancy about her dressing and it works like a charm. Her style is the very definition of fuss-free urban chic. And that is what makes the Yigal Azrouël brand so successful.

Undaunted by the younger upstarts of the New York fashion scene, Azrouel has certainly held his own by reaffirming his trait season after season since his debut for Fall 1998. This season, for Resort 2015, Azrouël continued his recent obsession with monochromatic hues of black and white with harmonious undertows of blue shades and an abstract lattice print. Body-con sensuality? Check. Textile exploration? Check. The use of fabrics here was commendable. The Yigal Azrouël woman certainly had choices.

The highlight, as always, were the well-placed construction lines that blended the complexities of the fabrics used. It was flattering. With Azrouel, you can expect nothing less. And with a celebrity following including the likes of Olivia Wilde, Charlize Theron, and Natalie Portman, Yigal Azrouel has undoubtly established serious claims to be the calling card for the urban woman.

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