Sunday, 29 May 2011

Models or Mortals?

        It has been two weeks since I last blogged properly. Two weeks too long:

       Lady GaGa has released 'Born This Way', the t-shirts for Japan have been released and we are now verging on June and the July issues of magazines it beholds. I have completed three AS levels and am left with just one on the sixth of June, as well as two A2 modules towards its end, but the reality is that my blogging routine is no longer interrupted by revision; it can recommence. And, whilst it is tempting to rant on in glee over the latest GaGa cut, I feel the need to return to my roots and address a fashion-based topic: Models.
        For those of you who don't know, Sex and the City episodes are the perfect revision inbetweener, at just over 20 minutes in length each, they provide a suitable amount of amusement for a suitable amount of time. Plus dated or not, it was, and always will be, one of the most fashionable shows around.

         In fact the last episode I watched was the catwalk one. You know the one, when Carrie is asked to feature in a fashion show, wearing Dolce & Gabbana underwear and ends up tripping on the runway, but  gets back up again and rocks it. Well, throughout the episode Carrie is unsure whether she wants to walk or not because she is just a person, not a model. 
         Now most people, including myself, would go without 'Glee' for a month just to go to a fashion show, let alone actually be in one, however, Carrie raises the issue that, whilst Heidi Klum and Naomi Campbell have every right to walk the walk, why should she? She's not a model; it's not her job. 
         Yet as magazine covers have dictated in recent years, whilst models are a beloved part of the fashion industry, you needn't be one to be embraced by fashion. Tom Ford recently had a show in which both Beyoncé and Julianne Moore, walked alongside models and Naomi Campbell uses celebrities of all sorts in her annual charity catwalk. These people may all be famous but, like us, modelling is not their job. They just do it as a perk of their fame.

         Whilst models undoubtedly are some of the most beautiful people in the world and it is right for us to appreciate them - have you seen Jon Kortajarena(below)? - they are just people, who like Carrie Bradshaw, can write a column, just as she, like them, can walk on a runway. We needn't be intimidated by them nor their work, simply love it and if given the chance take part in it too. 

           Models have the best bone structure and most photogenic features in the world. Fact. But a model's purpose is to sell clothes and whilst, bone structure and beauty are important, confidence is key. And it is something, which we can all have, whether selling designer clothing on a runway or our own outfits as we walk down the street. Models are mortals and we are models - it's just that not all of us can get paid millions of pounds for it, mind you, not all 'models' can either.

Sunday, 22 May 2011

The Non-Post: The Sequel

       Whilst last week I was on the verge of national exams, today I am in the midst of them and so, once again, I cannot write one of my usual full length posts. So for those of you who've never visited the site before please check out and enjoy any of the posts before exam season (the 15th of May) and for my lovely loyal followers - here are two music videos, which happen to be slightly related to my English exam tomorrow and are just generally worth watching.
       In the exam I shall firstly, be asked a question on Wilfred Owen's war poetry, which I somehow have managed to connect to the overlooked 'Madonna - American Life' video. Random - perhaps, but when writing about war poetry it's extremely easy to detach yourself from the realities, which soldiers faced and still do face today. This keeps me grounded, watch it and you'll understand. 

       Disturbing isn't it? Unfortunately, I am not sure how well a Madonna-Owen comparison would go down with an examiner but I leave it with you because just like Owen, she expresses how war should not be glorified, as it was in the 1900s and still is today.
      Secondly, on a lighter note, we have a question on Emily Brontë's 'Wuthering Heights', which if you haven't read it - read it. You may not like it but it's clever and no doubt, like me, you will fancy the villain Heathcliff, just as GaGa does 'Judas' and Alexandra Burke does her 'Bad Boys'. Now, whether this piece of 70s pop gold has any relevance to the exam or not, it is called 'Wuthering Heights'. Yes, the wonderfully wacky 'Kate Bush' song, whose dance and dress make for a priceless video. Enjoy.

Sunday, 15 May 2011

The Reality of Exams

Next week I have 5 national exams; unfortunately revision must take priority over blogging.
However, for those loyal followers and random visitors, who happen to be reading this - here are a few things to keep you entertained in the meantime.

1. The Video: Jennifer Lopez - I'm Into You 
        Assuming that you have already seen Lady GaGa's Judas

2. The Collection: Versace Mens - AW 2011-12

3. The Song: Lady GaGa - The Edge of Glory

4. The Image: Inez van Lamsweerde and Vinoodh Matadin - Vogue Paris

5. The Blog: There are so many brilliant ones but right now I am loving...

Sunday, 8 May 2011

The Relevance of Fashion

    In the 'Editor's Letter' of the June issue of Vogue, amongst addressing Demarchelier's stunning 'Let's Dance' shoot of Arizona Muse and Rana Kabbani's reflection on Middle-Eastern repression, Alexandra Shulman talks about the relevance of fashion.

     She states how although, amongst the natural disaster's of Japan and the political situation in the Middle East, the 'task of putting together a fashion magazine might seem a little like Nero's proverbial fiddling', it is necessary. It 'provides a means of 'escapism and inspiration - while also being, like fashion, a product of the age' and thus, unlike Nero's 'fiddling', it is somehow relevant. 
      One need only gaze at Alexa Chung's cover to understand this. Despite being incredibly beautiful - Chung's girl-next-door tomboy qualities and fresh, young personality don't make her an untouchable glamazon. In fact they have the opposite effect; she is a beautiful woman to whom we can all relate. She is both relevant and intelligent and her recent Vogue article, 'Kane and Able' proved this, in that, it was informative, interesting and most importantly enjoyable, just as fashion is and always should be.

    It is our means of escape from the daily-goings on of life, whether we be going through relationship issues or mountains of work (WARNING: less blogging over the next few months - sadly exams take priority), we can enjoy fashion, just as we do television - it's a minor holiday amongst our busy schedules. Except with fashion, you can wear an item of clothing and feel great for the entire day, whereas the enjoyment of a programme is often over in less than an hour and the impatience to wait a week to find out the next plot line can be unbearable. 
     And what's so wonderful about fashion is that there is nothing wrong with our obsession over material goods such as clothes, because it is instinctual. We love designer clothing because we are human and as opposed to avoiding it, we should adore it. They have the power to both be and make us look beautiful. Whether it is in their architecture, expression or both they can flatter our shapes and make a statement. They do not represent vanity but culture. 
       The 50s embraced the housewife image, the 60s a more modern atypical look, the 70s glamour and the 80s excessiveness - 'That was the era when one asked themselves: Why have a skirt - when you can have a puffball skirt? Why have shoulders on show, when you can have shoulder pads?' And so accordingly, the 90s reverted to minimalism come grunge and as the 00s came into view we were returning to glamour. Yet, this was upturned by the recession and we reverted to simplicity.

     However, now designers are in fact embracing glamour as they attempted to do in the 00s. They are ignoring the recession, as we all attempt to do so. Fashion is acting as a means for us to forget about the recession if not entirely, momentarily - although, we may be in debt, if we look a million dollars, who cares?
      Just as any other form of culture, fashion is relevant and whilst we find ourselves over-worked and over-tired at least we know that we can indulge ourselves a little in the form of fashion. Anyone fancy a trip to Selfridges? 

Sunday, 1 May 2011

The Inevitable Post

     I have to admit, when Prince William and Catherine Middleton's wedding was announced, I was hardly excited. After all they are just two people and a wedding is a wedding. Their engagement interview went on to confirm this because, despite their positions, they are just like any other young couple.

     Yet that is what is so appealing about them. They are fresh, likeable and as unpretentious, as they can be, when they are Duke and Duchess of Cambridge. William, is the Prince, who went to university and became a pilot, in defiance of his family background and Catherine, the normal girl, who met him at St. Andrews, fell in love and became a princess. Their story, although shamelessly adapted by the American media, really is a fairytale. Besides, who doesn't love a wedding, particularly when it is held in Westminster Abbey in front of roughly two billion people?
      Like any royal wedding, there were members of parliament, celebrities and most importantly family. From the heavily pregnant Victoria Beckham, who looked very pretty in her own label and a Phillip Treacy hat to Samantha Cameron, who looked simple but chic in a Burberry body con dress, Erdem Jewels and no hat - Catherine wasn't the only one who looked fabulous. I must say though, David Beckham, in Ralph Lauren Purple label, really wasn't too bad either.

    However, as always, there were certain guests who embodied the occasion, in such a way which only royals can and, in all honesty, only royals should. No sisters, other than Princess Beatrice and Eugenie could get away with wearing Valentino Couture and Vivienne Westwood with such extravagant Phillip Treacy head-wear. Beatrice's dress and coat were lovely, and although her hat was an acquired taste, it was fun and perfectly extravagant for the occasion.

Royal Wedding Arrivals

       In fact, of the William's family, it was the Spencer sisters, who really didn't put a foot wrong, in their more subtle approach to dressing, with simple fascinators and elegant dresses. Not to mention Lord Frederick Windsor's wife, Sophie Winkleman, who showed everyone how it's done in her Giorgio Armani and Phillip Treacy ensemble.

     But of course it was the Middleton family, who caught all of our attentions. Whether it was Catherine's adorable father, Michael on the isle, her mother Carole in Catherine Walker, her sexy brother James in the pulpit or her radiant sister Pippa in McQueen, it became clear that the Middletons really are the perfect family to join the royals. Just look at the new family photograph.

      However, as you can tell from above, there was one lady who stood out, amongst everyone: Catherine. In a timeless ivory lace dress designed by the one and only Sarah Burton of Alexander McQueen, she radiated beauty. It perfectly mixed traditional materials with a more modern shape and train length, just as Ellie Goulding's rendition of Elton John's 'Your Song' mixed tradition with her modern quirky voice at the  reception  - just as William and Catherine perfectly mix the tradition of the royal family with the modernity of their marriage.

     William and Catherine's marriage, although not life-saving, has put all but the most cynical of us in a good mood. It has made us all proud to be British; our traditional monarchy has managed to survive in such modern times and long may it continue.