Love This Brand — Kurtis Paul

Kurtis Paul Sherlock lookbook

Having interned at a small business, I love to see new businesses and new creations. Kurtis Paul, a men’s accessories brand, caught my eye for the detail and care that is clearly put into every product.  I interviewed one of the founders, Lloyd Rayner, and could immediately tell that he was a thoughtful and earnest person.  He answered all of my questions personally and promptly, writing with the refinement that seems so charming to us Americans but is probably taken completely for granted in the UK.

Kurtis Paul was founded in 2015 by two brothers from Manchester, Kurtis and Lloyd. They make handbags, backpacks, duffle bags, beach bags, laptop sleeves, and pencil cases made of genuine top grain cow leather with nylon fabric interiors and brass metal work. They are priced between $52 and $364. Kurtis Paul is a brand for “the man with a desire to succeed, to reach his potential and do it in style”. This involves drinking coffee and working long hours, but also staying in shape, going out at night, and rewarding yourself with a vacation once in awhile. Living in New York City, I can relate. Most days I wake up in Bushwick, take the M train to Greenwich Village, get coffee, and work on my laptop in Bobst library. Yet I also take some time to play board games with my friends in Jersey City, go to clubs in the Meatpacking District, and watch the pigeons and squirrels in Washington Square Park.

Kurtis Paul Instagram 6

Manchester at night

Every Kurtis Paul bag takes on the character of an extraordinary gentleman.

 

 

Alfred Leather Weekend Bag = Alfred Pennyworth

Alfred Pennyworth, a fictional retired intelligence agent, was Batman’s butler and sole confidant, advising him to do good.

 

 

Arnold Canvas Duffle Bag = Arnold Schwarzenegger

Californians may call him The Governator, but you can’t deny that Arnold Schwarzenegger is someone who can do anything he sets his mind to, in bodybuilding, acting, and politics.

 

 

Columbus Canvas Backpack = Christopher Columbus

Christopher Columbus left his country and set sail across the ocean to a place he never even knew existed.

 

 

Cromwell Leather Duffle Bag = Oliver Cromwell

Oliver Cromwell was a radical military and political leader who attempted to overthrow the King of England in the sixteenth century, and is considered the father of British democracy.

 

 

Darwin Leather Backpack = Charles Darwin

Charles Darwin, an English naturalist and geologist, introduced the scientific theory of evolution by natural selection in the nineteenth century.

 

 

Donald Drawstring Beach Bag = George MacDonald

George MacDonald was a Scottish poet and a pioneer of fantasy literature, known for Phantastes, The Princess and the Goblin, and Lilith: A Romance.

 

 

Sherlock Leather Tote Bag = Sherlock Holmes

Sherlock Holmes, a fictional British private detective, was “the master in his field”.

Lloyd and Kurtis Rayner were born and raised in a small village on the outskirts of Manchester and the Peak District in central England, an idyllic place of peat bogs and heather moorland and the home of Britain’s first national park. Lloyd and Kurtis both grew up to work for large corporations, Lloyd in analytics and Kurtis in sales.

Kurtis Paul Peak District

They started Kurtis Paul for practical and personal reasons. Their jobs required them to travel frequently, and they encountered many difficulties with luggage. As they tried to find the best options for their travel needs, Lloyd says, “Our experience has found that there were two ends to this market, the cheap, high street brands where there was a tendency to create ‘one time use’ products or the high end brands where a majority of the cost was embedded in the brand name and not necessarily the product.” In other words, when it comes to bags you do not always get what you pay for. They saw a need for “a brand that stood for super high quality, classic design and costed to suit the customer”. As someone who pays this much  per month in rent, I am very much in support.

Working at a large company brings affluence and prestige, but there was something missing. “We felt like the processes involved with our former jobs were restricting our creativity. Having grown up in a small village this creativity was a big part of our lives, we were brought up to believe that imagination should be used as a form of entertainment. Having spent years feeling suppressed we knew that it was time to be true to ourselves and express our personalities.” So they took the risk of starting their own business from scratch in order to express their creativity in design. Lloyd is passionate about industrial design, “the heavy duty/oversized look and the space that comes with it”. Kurtis is a perfectionist, “constantly seeing items from clothes to bags and more and imagining what I could do to enhance and make the items unique”.

Kurtis Paul Darwin lookbook 3

They envisioned themselves as not only a brand that built quality bags, but a brand built on “class, trust, and integrity”, and they needed a name to reflect that. Lloyd and Kurtis spent an entire Friday afternoon brainstorming such a name. Says Lloyd, “There were thousands of discarded ideas”. They finally decided on Kurtis Paul, after Kurtis Paul Rayner, in the tradition of celebrities like Tim Allen, Gary Jules, and Charlotte Olympia. “As they say, if you truly believe in something you should put your name to it,” says Lloyd. “We did just that.” I like to think that my name, Brette Nicole, is more marketable than my sister’s name, Darin Leigh, but clearly this pair of siblings is above such pettiness.

Kurtis Paul Arnold lookbook

Kurtis Paul is headquartered in Manchester, where all of their design takes place. Manchester is considered the birthplace of the Industrial Revolution. At the turn of the nineteenth century it was the most productive center of cotton processing and the largest marketplace for cotton goods, earning the nickname “Cottonopolis”. The engineering firms that made machines for the cotton trade started producing machinery for general manufacture, Manchester exported machinery in addition to cotton, and the city’s population exploded as people flocked from all over England, Wales, Scotland, and Ireland in search of opportunity. Lloyd and Kurtis take much pride in this heritage. “Elements of this great city can be found in most of our products,” Lloyd explains. “For example, each of our bags is finished using brushed brass fixtures, chosen specifically for their strength, and they mimic the style of industrial machinery.”

Kurtis Paul Instagram 5

Manchester during the day

The design philosophy of Kurtis Paul is that “products should be designed to fill a purpose. The creation of all our bags starts with a problem, as in what problem are we trying to solve.” The Alfred weekend bag solves the problem of needing sturdy luggage that can be used for years without wearing out. The Arnold duffle bag solves the problem of needing a bag that can be used anywhere all day long, from the café to the office to the gym. The Columbus backpack solves the problem of “fashionable exploration, how to create a bag that looked classy [but] was practical.”

According to Lloyd, “Our most proud achievement is the creation of the Canvas Collection.” This collection of duffels, backpacks, and beach bags stands apart in the market for its extreme durability. While most canvas bags are thirteen to eighteen ounces thick, the Kurtis Paul cotton canvas is twenty ounces thick. To visualize this difference, think of taking your average canvas bag, then adding the weight of a standard 5oz. baseball, all of which will stand between your things and the sand, dirt, and concrete outside. Lloyd says, “We have kept the design of the bags as simple as possible, opting for more of a minimalist feel. For example we decided to strip the backpack of conventional side pockets, giving it a more civilised look.” (By civilised he means not hipster.) “Whilst on the outside these products may look simple, a great deal of attention was paid to every detail.”

Kurtis Paul Columbus lookbook

Besides making business trips, Lloyd has backpacked “all over the world, covering many parts of Europe, Asia and Africa”. For him, backpacking is “the perfect freedom, a period away from connectivity, rules and schedules”. He prefers going “off the beaten track” and living like a local to checking off a list of tourist spots. His ability to travel to so many different parts of the world in this manner intrigued me. I have always been interested in learning about different places and ways of living, have known the name and location of every country in the world since I was five years old, and have researched 371 different languages, but my self-consciousness holds me back from actually traveling. I don’t ask for directions, I go to great lengths not to ask for help, and I feel stupid if I cannot communicate with a person in their language. So I asked Lloyd for advice. His first suggestion was to “blend, if you stand out as a tourist you’re an easy picking for anyone to take advantage”. That said, he doesn’t think traveling to foreign countries is any more dangerous than the usual hazards of everyday life. He suggests traveling with friends because “groups are always safer but travelling is also meant to be a social event. Find someone you can share your experiences with, it will make them more memorable.” For some reason, I had always pictured myself traveling alone. His perspective really inspires me to move out of my comfort zone.

Kurtis Paul Instagram 4

In the course of his travels, Lloyd came face-to-face with extreme poverty. He has seen “people who have self mutilated because they are so poor and feel it is the only way people will help”. He was especially moved by seeing the Kibera slum in Nairobi, a place where 1.2 million people live within a single square mile, over 10 percent of the children are orphans, homes are made of mud and corrugate iron, and “sewage runs freely through the streets”. Last year, Kurtis Paul donated their entire profit, from August through December, to African Children’s Haven, a charity that combats extreme poverty by improving shelter, health, and education. Extreme poverty is defined by living on $1.90 per day. To put this in perspective, the poverty threshold for a single person in the United States is $11,770 per year, or $32.25 per day.

Kurtis Paul Namibia

A slum in Namibia

As a small family business, the Kurtis Paul brand is able to stay true to themselves, creating a richer vision to show to their audience. Their Instagram already has 19,000 followers, which is incredibly popular for a small emerging brand. They are proactive about reaching out to people and seeking collaboration. They invite suggestions, design ideas, and modeling submissions from the public through Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook, and want to see “your stories, your successes and your adventures” with the #shareyouradventure hashtag.

 

 

Namibia and the Maldives

Lloyd and Kurtis are inspiring people, they make exceptional products, and their hearts are in the right place. I encourage anyone in search of a bag or a gift for the men in their life to look no further than Kurtis Paul!

Kurtis Paul Instagram 3

One Hundred Sunglasses

Besides being a blogger, I am a sales consultant at Sunglass Hut in Times Square — the highest-grossing store out of 3,000 Luxottica-owned retailers! Helping people with their style, talking to tourists from all over the world (Mongolia? Check. Nepal? Check. Cayman Islands? Check.), and seeing all the new luxury sunglasses come in is very exciting. Upon greeting a customer, we always let them know that they can try on any of the sunglasses on display. I thought it would be cute to say “Feel free to try everything on!”, meaning that they can look and think as much as they need to before making a purchase, without feeling judged or pressured. When I shop, I make sure to look at every product that meets my needs. It’s simple if I need a belt and there is literally one belt in the store that fits me. What’s more challenging is scouring a store with a great many qualifying products…like, say, a store that has hundreds of different sunglasses when I need sunglasses for summer. And I wondered, could I do it? Could I honestly consider every pair I liked in the entire store?

Miu Miu

I can. I went in on June 27, National Sunglasses Day, and spent three hours inside Sunglass Hut trying on every pair I liked. Here are 100 of the pairs I tried on:

Bulgari 6083 $370; Bulgari Serpenteyes, $470; Bulgari 6088, $510

Bulgari 8189, $440; Bulgari 6093, $440; Bulgari Serpenti, $410

Bulgari 8188, $470; Burberry 4241, $215; Chanel Butterfly Summer, $350

Chanel Round Spring, $515; Chanel Pilot Fall, $610; Dior Homme Composit, $565

Dior So Real, $595; Dior So Real Stud, $670; Dior Sight, $380

Dior Chicago, $395; Dior Diorama, $500; Dior Liner, $375

Dolce & Gabbana 2172, $340; Dolce & Gabbana 2169, $340; Dolce & Gabbana 4288, $330

Dolce & Gabbana 6105, $270; Dolce & Gabbana 2173, $650; Dolce & Gabbana 2170, $650 

Fendi 0060, $455; Fendi Iridia, $520; Fendi 0133, $380

Fendi 0041, $470; Fendi Hypnoshine, $695; Fendi Rainbow, $545

Fendi 0025, $355; Gigi Hadid for Vogue 5211 in black/pink and white, $140

Gucci 0061, $400; Maui Jim Nalani, $280; Maui Jim Summer Time, $319

Maui Jim Manu 64, $270; Michael Kors Hvar, $139; Michael Kors Evy, $179

Michael Kors Lia, $159; Miu Miu 52RS, $410

Miu Miu 13NS, $380; Miu Miu 52QS, $320; Miu Miu 12RSA, $410

Miu Miu 52SS, $470; Miu Miu 11RS, $410; Miu Miu 05SS, $470

Oakley Tie Breaker, $200; Oakley Elmont, $210; Oakley Frogskins, $120

Oakley Crossrange, $210; Oakley Mainlink, $200; Oakley Catalyst, $160 

Oakley Holbrook Ink Fade Collection, $170; Persol 100th Anniversary Collection, $410; Prada 65TS, $420

Prada 16TS, $460; Prada 68TS, $410

Prada 27NS; Prada 51SS, $330; Prada Cinema, $430

Prada 54SS, $330; Prada 61TS, $370; Polo Ralph Lauren 4125, $169

Ralph 5203, $150; Ray-Ban Cats 5000, $165; Ray-Ban Hexagonal Flat Lens, $150

Ray-Ban Gatsby, $185; Ray-Ban Flat Lens, $185; Ray-Ban 4274, $165

Ray-Ban Clubmaster, $175; Ray-Ban New Wayfarer, $155; Sunglass Hut Collection 1003, $80

Sunglass Hut Collection 2001 in red, black, and clear, $80-$100

Sunglass Hut Collection 2005, $80; Tiffany & Co. 4136 in brown and black, $380

Tiffany & Co. 4121, $380; Tiffany & Co. 4134, $390; Tiffany & Co. 3058, $330

Tiffany & Co. 3051, $310; Tom Ford Kasia, $390; Tom Ford Savannah, $445

Tom Ford Arabella, $475; Tory Burch 9046, $195; Valentino 4002, $350

Valentino 4005, $390; Valentino 4013, $290; Valentino 4008, $410 

Valentino 2002, $350; Valentino 2004, $380; Versace #Frenergy, $315 

Versace 4338, $240; Versace 2160, $265; Versace 4294, $240

Versace Medusa, $280; Versace 2177, $375; Versace 2140, $215

output_VdyRif

And the winner is…the Oakley Elmont!

Oakley Elmont 2

Me and my new shades in my favorite corner of the store. Bebe blouse. H&M skirt. Bandolino pumps. Claire’s earrings. Topshop headband. Handbag from my mother’s friend, with no tag inside. Photo by my coworker Baruch. 

Before I started working here, I thought Oakleys were for guys. There is a scene in the TV show Workaholics where the protagonists join a fraternity, and upon their initiation a frat member says “Here are your Oakleys,” as if every frat boy wears them. I know that show is basically one long joke, but the impression stayed with me. Until I found a pair of Oakleys that was polarized, had Prizm lens technology, and was feminine enough for even me.

Happy Summer!

Sun Shady

No Such Agency

NSA2

Last week, I ventured into Chinatown to visit the ready-to-wear showroom of No Such Agency, a boutique PR firm. They, along with a handbag brand and a lingerie brand, occupy the Triple A Loft, a cool, airy space filled with natural light. A zebra greeted me when I stepped out of the elevator, and I wandered past the mod yellow sofa and issues of WWD and Electrify in the lobby to the No Such Agency space, a charming area with a minimalist desk and table, an old-fashioned window, a floor-to-ceiling mirror, and six racks of samples. An intern greeted me and showed me around, telling me all about the collections.

I was immediately drawn to the Daniel.Silverstain rack. “I want to focus on this brand because I would wear every item here,” I stammered. I don’t always say this. Liking every item from a clothing brand is rare, in the way that it’s rare to enjoy every song in a music artist’s repertoire. What was it about these few items, hanging on a single steel rod, spaced a few inches apart? There was the recurrent pairing of black and white. There was the dramatic asymmetry, the kind that makes you feel perpetually a step ahead of the here and now.  There was the formality of each piece – being in my early twenties, I often like to dress older so I will be taken more seriously. And even though common prints and materials were used across items, as is typical for a seasonal collection, no two pieces blended together. There was nothing redundant, nothing forgettable. I could envision every item on myself, each one standing out on a crowded block, each one making a distinct impression.

NSA16

This is the Fall 2016 collection, shown last September as a see-now, buy-now presentation. Titled WHITE.CITY, it was inspired by the effects of the Bauhaus movement on Tel Aviv in the 1950s.

Me in the layered blouse, black pants, and crocodile-embossed shearling coat with separating panel in orchid. Though I prefer warm weather, I have always gravitated toward the grandeur of a long winter coat. All runway photos by Robert Mitra/WWD.  

Daniel Silverstain founded his luxury apparel brand in 2013. He takes inspiration from industrialism, modernism, and futurism. “I design to inspire women to be bold, to be courageous, to stand out, and to create a story of their own,” he says. Originally from Israel, Silverstain started his fashion career at the Israeli division of KEDS Kids in 2006, advancing quickly to Design Director. In 2009, he moved to New York to pursue a BFA in Fashion/Apparel Design at FIT. While in school, he interned at Marie Claire for a semester (see, even acclaimed designers pay their dues) and worked as an assistant designer at 3.1 Phillip Lim and a designer at Muuse and Elie Tahari.

He launched Daniel.Silverstain soon after graduating. Last year, he co-founded Flying Solo, a designer-owned retail incubator in Little Italy. Flying Solo provides a platform for startup brands to enter the brick-and-mortar market without selling to a retailer, which requires accommodating a retail markup and often supplying high minimum orders, or maintaining their own boutique, especially in New York where rents are high. Flying Solo is owned and operated by twenty-eight fashion brands.

     Daniel Silverstain Janelle Monae

Janelle Monáe, my favorite actress now that she’s an actress, in a Daniel.Silverstain coat for Cosmopolitan. Photo by Max Abadian.

NSA44

I recognized KUT from the Kloth from Nordstrom, where I sold their jeans in the Point of View department alongside brands like Caslon and NYDJ. I really enjoyed seeing the brand on its own, in its complete form. I always knew they had great-fitting jeans, but I didn’t know that they also had dresses, tops, jackets, and pants! I loved the profusion of florals, the pinstripes, the sweeping bell sleeves, and the whimsical paper bag waist on a pair of dress pants.

Me in the Luz blouse and Regina pants. Life Stride shoes.

NSA40

The effervescent bell sleeve of a pink blouse. 

KUT from the Kloth is based in Los Angeles. Their core focus is “to offer women of all shapes and sizes the perfect-fitting jean”. They started with the denim concept in 1977, but expanded to add sportswear in 2006. The company has a strong commitment to workers’ rights, requiring that all of their suppliers and vendors adhere to their Code of Ethics policy. They make sure to work only with factories that do not employ workers younger than 15, pay a fair wage, properly dispose of all hazardous materials, and have an environmental management system in place that includes disaster and emergency preparedness. After the Rana Plaza collapse, this is welcome to hear.

NSA38    NSA35

The Ruthy dress and Rosie skirt. 

  NSA42    NSA41

The off-shoulder flutter sleeve dress and Adyson dress. 

You can find KUT from the Kloth on their website, Nordstrom, Dillard’s, Macy’s, Bloomingdale’s, Century 21, Zappos, Bluefly, and many boutiques nationwide. As a resident of Bushwick who likes to shop at little shops, my source of choice is Néda in Park Slope.

NSA43     NSA39

No Such Agency’s fashion showroom makes appointments for editors, stylists, celebrities, bloggers, and “micro-influencers” to select samples to borrow for photo shoots and events. The biggest appointment witnessed by the girl I talked to was from Vogue, to select pieces for a Karlie Kloss spread shot in Australia. Karlie Kloss has been my favorite model since this article in 2007, so I was pretty excited. No Such Agency keeps six brands at a time. The founders, “This British power couple”, consistently choose independent ready-to-wear brands “with a cool vibe”. They also have a showroom in Los Angeles.

Besides fashion, No Such Agency represents clients in the media, music, art, and lifestyle industries; in other words, everything creative and glamorous. The founders, Dan and Helena Barton, came from marketing at Diesel. Dan has worked at Maison Margiela and DSquared2. Helena has worked at Rag & Bone and All Saints. On the music side, she has worked for James Brown, The Strokes, Kings of Leon, and Franz Ferdinand.

My Trip to Fashion Week — Yuna Yang

yuna-yang-stage

I keep getting closer. Last year, as a Michael Kors intern, I worked at Market Week for their Fall 2016 collection. This season, I was invited to Yuna Yang as a blogger. So last Saturday afternoon, I put on my coat and boots, crunched through the snow, and took the 30-minute train ride into Manhattan, cold and excited.

The show was at the Gotham Comedy Club in Chelsea, so guests sat at tables for two partitioned along the wall. I was pleased because I could hang my coat on a chair and place my purse on a table, two things you can’t do with the traditional rows of benches. I could also get to know my table-mate, who, as it happens, went to NYU like me! As the guests poured in, I noticed colorful faux-fur jackets, lace-up booties, and box clutches.

yuna-yang-arrival

Guests arrive and take their seats. 

yuna-yang-audience

Two guests before the show. 

Every Yuna Yang collection has a name, and this season was called “Lights in the Shadow”. I appreciate this about Yuna Yang because attending the show felt like seeing a performance, like a play or a dance recital. The collection was inspired by the people’s protests against American president Donald Trump, especially the Women’s March, and South Korean president Park Geun-hye, who was impeached last December. The show notes said, “Yuna Yang’s F/W17 collection pays homage to people who hold on to hope and belief in shadowed times.”

The models included Marina Albino, Phillipa Steele, Nastya Choo, Rachel Thomas, Alyona Subbotina, Liga Liepina, Val Debeuf, Jini Lee, Akua Williams, and Lisa Tomaschewsky.

Here are some of the looks:

FLOWER BOMBER PRINT

yuna-yang-flower-bomber-print-dress     yuna-yang-flower-bomber-pajama-with-yy-signature-beaded-camisole

WATERFALL PRINT

yuna-yang-yy-signature-beaded-camisole-with-waterfall-skirt    yuna-yang-waterfall-leather-trench-coat-with-flower-bomber-jeans

AUSTRIAN LACE

yuna-yang-yy-signature-austrian-lace-dress    yuna-yang-yy-signature-austrian-lace-trench-coat-with-lace-pants

LIGHTING CANDLE PRINT

yuna-yang-lighting-candle-print-dress   yuna-yang-twinkle-sweatshirt-with-lightning-candle-print-skirt    yuna-yang-lighting-candle-print-tunic-with-sky-blue-fur-coat

yuna-yang-lighting-candle-print-trenchcoat-with-twinkle-long-sweatshirt   yuna-yang-lighting-candle-print-trench-coat-with-twinkle-sweatshirt-and-wide-pants

AND MORE

yuna-yang-royal-purple-overcoat-with-twinkle-sweatshirt-2   yuna-yang-grey-shadow-leather-trench-coat-with-twinkle-slip-dress-2

yuna-yang-burgundy-slip-dress-3   yuna-yang-burgundy-slip-dress

My favorite look of all was the closing look, the burgundy slip dress. The collection was bright and full of energy, with gold, yellow, orange, lavender, green, and sky blue. Velvet dresses, sweatshirts, and skirts provided the durability one needs to get through fall and winter.

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yuna-yang-me-2

Me before the show started. D-Face leather dress. Hue cross-hatch leggings. Merona boots. Vintage dragonfly necklace. 

As this was my first time attending Fashion Week, I was so excited to see up close that which I have looked at from afar for the past decade (yes, since I was in middle school). When I was 12, I wrote a story about an island of witches who wore only haute couture, every day, at every occasion. After seeing the beautiful Yuna Yang outfits, I was left wishing that everyone out on the street  looked as put-together as runway models. That may not be the case, but this week Manhattan came pretty close.

yuna-yang

Yuna Yang is from Seoul. Before starting her own brand, she thoroughly learned her craft; she earned a degree in Fine Arts from Ewha Women’s University, a degree in Design from Instituto Marangoni, and a degree in Womenswear Design from Central Saint Martins. She also gained valuable work experience, working with Alviero Martini in Milan and Ann-Sofie Beck and Clements Ribeiro in London. She debuted her New York based line, Yuna Yang, at NYFW Fall 2010, and has shown every season since. She has also dressed many a celebrity: Carrie Underwood, Jessica Loundes, Danai Gurira, Darby Stanchfield, Nicole Murphy, Dascha Polanco, Maye Musk, and Irene Kim to name a few!

yuna-yang-carrie-underwood

Carrie Underwood in the music video for “See You Again”

yuna-yang-nicole-murphy    yuna-yang-irene-kim

Nicole Murphy; Irene Kim

yuna-yang-jessica-lowndes   yuna-yang-danai-gurira

Jessica Loundes; Danai Gurira

yuna-yang-darby-stanchfield   yuna-yang-maye-musk

Darby Stanchfield; Maye Musk 

2016 MTV Video Music Awards - Arrivals

NEW YORK, NY – AUGUST 28: Actress Dascha Polanco attends the 2016 MTV Video Music Awards at Madison Square Garden on August 28, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images)

Yuna Yang can be found at Foravi in Manhattan; Cami in Roslyn, NY; Deborah Gilbert Smith in Millburn, NJ; Joe Brand in Laredo, TX; Joe Brand in McAllen, TX; A&A in Taipei; La Scala in Taipei; Art to Wear in Taipei; Shin Kong Mitsukoshi in Taipei; Avenuel in Seoul; Galleria in Seoul; Lotte in Busan, South Korea; Isetan in Tokyo; and Arabian Apparel in Riyadh.

yuna-yang-hats

Yuna Yang hats and headbands at Isetan. 

Past concepts: The New Woman, No Borders, The 100% Perfect Girl, Hunting Without Guns, The Butterfly Mother, 1920s Shapes Meet Modern Art, Che Bella, Civil Twilight, Bright Lights Big City, My Black Wedding Dress

TBT — Senior Year

rules-of-etiquette

Emily, Kalpana, and me. Rules of Etiquette jumpsuit. Jessica Simpson pumps. Apt. 9 belt. Photo by Travis W. Keyes

I cannot believe that almost a year has passed since I graduated. Here I am with my friends Emily and Kalpana at an event for the Epson Digital Couture Project. It was a Tuesday night, at 5:30 or 6:30, when I received a text from Kalpana asking if I would like to go to a party she had been invited to. I love surprises, so I said yes right away. The party was at a huge industrial space in the Meatpacking District, walking distance from my dorm. Kalpana introduced me to her friend Emily, whom she had met through modeling. It was a great night, and we have all had fun together since.

That jumpsuit is one I had looked at day after day in the Savvy department when I worked at Nordstrom, and finally bought when it dropped to half price. What drew me to it was that while it’s attention-grabbing with a bold tribal pattern, the fit is relaxed and extremely comfortable. It’s like a onesie that you can do more than sleep in. I also love the duality of the print with its colors reversed — seeing two versions of the same lines reminds me of looking at a photo and its negative. I placed a belt between the two sections to accentuate this and paired it with matching pumps.

When I look back at my past, it feels a bit charmed. It’s funny, how one can go through the present without seeing the good, and go through the past without seeing the bad.

 

 

 

The Golden Globes — Runway to Reality

golden-globe

I love fashion…but there are so many collections and shows! Let’s think about it – if you read WWD, for example, then in the course of a year you will see Resort, Bridal Spring, Spring, Spring Couture, Pre-Fall, Bridal Fall, Fall, and Fall Couture for women’s fashion, presented in New York, London, Milan, Paris, Tokyo, and Los Angeles. I’m feeling a little dizzy.

This past year, we have seen 1,577 brand presentations on WWD (see appendix). And some brands, like Maria Lucia Hohan and Rani Zakhem, aren’t even covered by WWD (mind-blowing). I love seeing all the collections, which is why my posts center on them, but one can be left wondering what to pay attention to and, if you’re like me, worried over all the looks you’ve forgotten without even realizing you’ve forgotten them.

So it’s really fun to see the looks revisited. That’s what celebrities are for! The red carpet is a chance to see the best dresses — across brands, cities, and seasons — come to life. Some stars have their gowns custom-made, but more of them use runway looks than you realize. Here are the beautiful gowns of the Golden Globes, and where they came from.

 

Pre-Fall 2017 – November 9, 2016 to Present

J. Mendel  Pre-Fall 2017  j-mendel-keri-red-carpet

Keri Russell in J. Mendel (Courtesy Photo; Steve Granitz/WireImage)

   delpozo-caitriona-source    delpozo-caitriona-red-carpet

Caitriona Balfe in Delpozo (Courtesy Photo; Venturelli/WireImage)

pamella-roland-annette-source     pamella-roland-annette-red-carpet

Annette Bening in Pamella Roland (www.pamellaroland.com; Steve Granitz/WireImage) 

Bridal Fall 2017 – October 2, 2016 to November 9, 2016

Idan Cohen Bridal Fall 2017    idan-cohen-kristin-red-carpet

Kristin Cavallari in Idan Cohen (Andrew Walker; Steve Granitz/WireImage)

Spring 2017 – June 8, 2016 to November 2, 2016

Alexander McQueen RTW Spring 2017   alexander-mcqueen-nicole-red-carpet

Nicole Kidman in Alexander McQueen (Giovanni Giannoni/WWD; Venturelli/WireImage)

Vera Wang Bridal Fall 2017   vera-wang-sarah-jessica-red-carpet

Sarah Jessica Parker in Vera Wang (Giovanni Giannoni/WWD; Venturelli/WireImage) 

Vionnet RTW Spring 2017   vionnet-anna-red-carpet

Anna Kendrick in Vionnet (Giovanni Giannoni/WWD; Steve Granitz/WireImage) 

Andrew GN RTW Spring 2017    andrew-gn-lola-red-carpet

Lola Kirke in Andrew Gn (Dominique Maitre/WWD; Steve Granitz/WireImage) 

Monique Lhuillier RTW Spring 2017   monique-lhuillier-drew-red-carpet

Drew Barrymore in Monique Lhuillier (Aurora Rose/WWD; Frazer Harrison/Getty)

Monique Lhuillier RTW Spring 2017   monique-lhuillier-louise-red-carpet

Louise Roe in Monique Lhuillier (Aurora Rose/WWD; AFP/Getty Images)

Louis Vuitton RTW Spring 2017   louis-vuitton-sophie-red-carpet

Sophie Turner in Louis Vuitton (Giovanni Giannoni; Frazer Harrison/Getty) 

Bottega Veneta RTW Spring 2017   bottega-veneta-amanda-red-carpet

Amanda Peet in Bottega Veneta (Davide Maestri/WWD; Venturelli/WireImage) 

Mugler RTW Spring 2017   74th Annual Golden Globe Awards, Arrivals, Los Angeles, USA - 08 Jan 2017

Gal Gadot in Mugler (Giovanni Giannoni/WWD; REX/Shutterstock) 

Marchesa RTW Spring 2017    marchesa-georgina-red-carpet

Georgina Chapman of Marchesa in Marchesa (Giovanni Giannoni; Frazer Harrison/Getty)

Michael Costello RTW Spring 2017   michael-costello-diana-red-carpet

Diana Madison in Michael Costello (Rodni Banica/WWD; Steve Granitz/WireImage)

tony-ward-amy-source    tony-ward-amy-red-carpet

Amy Landecker in Tony Ward (http://tonyward.net; Venturelli/WireImage) 

 

Fall Couture 2016 – June 24, 2016 to July 6, 2016

Atelier Versace Couture Fall 2016    versace-naomi-red-carpet

Naomi Campbell in Atelier Versace (Giovanni Giannoni; Frazer Harrison/Getty) 

Zuhair Murad show, Runway, Autumn Winter 2016, Haute Couture Fashion Week, Paris, France - 06 Jul 2016    zuhair-murad-lily-red-carpet

Lily Collins in Zuhair Murad (Giovanni Giannoni/WWD; Frazer Harrison/Getty) 

Zuhair Murad show, Runway, Autumn Winter 2016, Haute Couture Fashion Week, Paris, France - 06 Jul 2016   74th Annual Golden Globe Awards, Arrivals, Los Angeles, USA - 08 Jan 2017

Sofia Vergara in Zuhair Murad (Gionvanni Giannoni/WWD; Rob Latour/REX/Shutterstock)

Zuhair Murad show, Runway, Autumn Winter 2016, Haute Couture Fashion Week, Paris, France - 06 Jul 2016    zuhair-murad-olivia-red-carpet

Olivia Culpo in Zuhair Murad (Giovanni Giannoni/WWD; BEI/Shutterstock)

J.Mendel Couture Fall 2016    j-mendel-heidi-red-carpet

Heidi Klum in J. Mendel (Giovanni Giannoni; Frazer Harrison/Getty) 

Elie Saab Couture Fall 2016   elie-saab-jessica-red-carpet

Jessica Biel in Elie Saab (Giovanni Giannoni; Getty Images)

Chanel Couture Fall 2016    chanel-riley-red-carpet

Riley Keough in Chanel (Giovanni Giannoni; Steve Granitz/WireImage) 

rani-zakhem-giuliana-source    rani-zakhem-giuliana-red-carpet

Giuliana Rancic in Rani Zakhem (www.ranizakhem.com; Michael Buckner/Variety/REX/Shutterstock) 

Resort 2017 – May 17, 2016 to November 11, 2016

Christian Siriano Resort 2017   christian-siriano-angela-red-carpet

Angela Bassett in Christian Siriano (Courtesy Photo; Kevark Djansezian/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty) 

rachel-gilbert-source   rachel-gilbert-renee-red-carpet

Renee Borgh in Rachel Gilbert (www.rachelgilbert.com; Frazer Harrison/Getty) 

Fall 2016 – February 1, 2016 to October 20, 2016

Marchesa RTW Fall 2016   marchesa-chrissy-red-carpet

Chrissy Teigen in Marchesa (Rodni Banica/WWD; Frazer Harrison/Getty) 

Reem Acra RTW Fall 2016   reem-acra-emily-red-carpet

Emily Ratajkowski in Reem Acra (George Chinsee/WWD; Venturelli/WireImage) 

Christian Siriano RTW Fall 2016   christian-siriano-kelly-red-carpet

Kelly Preston in Christian Siriano (Courtesy Photo; Frazer Harrison/Getty)

Naeem Kahn RTW Fall 2016   naeem-khan-mandy-red-carpet

Mandy Moore in Naeem Khan (Tommy Iannaccone/WWD; Frazer Harrison/Getty)

tom-ford-amy-source   tom-ford-amy-red-carpet

Amy Adams in Tom Ford (Courtesy Photo; Neilson Barnard/NBCUniversal/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty) 

Spring Couture 2016 – January 24, 2016 to July 4, 2016

zuhair-murad-tracee-source   zuhair-murad-tracee-red-carpet

Tracee Ellis Ross in Zuhair Murad (Giovanni Giannoni/WWD; Frazer Harrison/Getty) 

Pre-Fall 2016 – November 17, 2015 to May 11, 2016

maria-lucia-hohan-charissa-source   maria-lucia-hohan-charissa-red-carpet

Charissa Thompson in Maria Lucia Hohan (http://mlh-shop.com; Frazer Harrison/Getty)

 

And now I’ll leave you with my favorite look of the night!

olivia-culpo-cropped

Credits: Golden Globes trophies = cbsnews.com

Appendix:

*so far

Column1 PF ’17 BF ’17 FC ’16 S ’17 R ’17 F ’16 SC ’16 BS ’17 Column2
New York 113 48 253 144 124 47 729
London 11* 70 21 71 173
Milan 23* 94 34 87 238
Paris 9* 31 135 32 124 26 357
Tokyo 21 33 54
Los Angeles 1* 25 26
157 48 31 598 231 439 26 47 1,577