The “Great Gatsby” has my nomination for best costumes ...
Sunday, May 19, 2013
Baz Luhrmann's 2013 rendition is very much a visual feast. Catherine Martin, the film's costume designer should be applauded for a masterful accomplishment. As I have encouraged folks in the past--it sometimes is worthwhile to see a movie for the aesthetic nspiration it provides. The 20s and 30s I believe was the most beautiful period of the 20th century.
..are you saddened? My take? I never felt the show lived up to the subject's potential. Although some good advice was verbalized--somehow the resulting makeovers were never particularly good.Perhaps I expect too much in a world where "Less" has indeed become "More". And possibly the public does no longer knows the difference?
Charlize Theron is a beauty and last night, to me, she was the fairest of them all-- in white Dior (it's in her contract with Dior) and wearing the gamine haircut that shows off her delicate features and bone structure as it did once Jean Seberg's and Audrey Hepburn's. Next I loved Naomi Watts who proved that blondes can really rock silver tones (essentially gray) as well as golds. Her very modern dress was reminiscent of Thierry Mugler's 70-80s designs and even gives a nod to glamorous design in the 30s.I loved Jennifer Lawrence's Dior dress--- though it caused her to trip. Unless you had learned the skill as a young model --practicing to wield yourself in high heels and with long trains is a hurdle for a 22 year old. Her hair too was in a soft, lovely chingon that thankfully did not look particularly sprayed (as did Jessica's, Reese's, and Jane's) or messy (as did Naomi's--where most hairstyles go wrong). Jessica Chastain looked very pretty in Armani Prive--the same brand that Anne Hathaway wore for her singing ensemble onstage. It was a soft, gorgeous gown and actually lovlier than the Prada columnar dress she wore most of the evening. I was disappointed to see that even Merrill Streep's hair (usually lovely) was contributing to a matronly look that is unnecessary. Jane Fonda was lauded by everyone, but once again I found her taste in clothes "trying too hard" and 80s garish. She has excellent posture and lovely figure and deserves credit for whatever is still (?) natural. Jennifer Hudson looked very pretty as did Adele (who has great hair and make-up who rightly emphasize her beautiful face). Amy Adams looked like a princess in her pale blue/gray romantic dress by Oscar de la Renta, and Jennifer Garner too looked glamorous in a Gucci gown that showed off a statement vintage looking necklace and in a fuschia/wine color that worked beautifully with her coloring.Kudos to the men who wore tuxedos that fit well and know how to tie a bow tie. Seth MacFarlane, was a good example of well-dressed. Jack Nicholson has regressed and is looking more like a crumpled Al Pacino (old age is no excuse, they need a copy of "Forever Cool"). I'm also partial to full beards--and the men who wore them looked great.
Is staying too safe almost as bad as the other extreme? I say "almost ..."--but I would still rather see her boring look than what I see so much of on the streets --which is out and out "bad-taste". So many rules have been thrown out today --that when women (or men) try to express their style individuality they frequently overdo, have no understanding of proper fit, or are inappropriate.This gal who was most recently critiqued by Fab Over Fifty's "experts", is an example of a lack of individuality, guilty of a high dose of simplistic label wearing (nothing special design-wise), with no hint of artfulness .
Our First Lady looking for her style,in the spotlight.
Thursday, January 24, 2013
It must be odd to be so scrutinized when you have not arrived at your style. And with all the pressure post Jackie O First Ladies have to support US designers (and rightly so)--the more diverse your choices--the more spread-out your style might become. The most constant personal style I see in Michelle's choices is within her daytime wear. And more often-- the less successful in my opinion. For such a tall, powerful looking woman who projects an equally strong and mature personality --I'm amazed at how "girlish" her bent has been in her daytime style.There are photos of Mrs Obama that do show her "daytime" beautiful when her dress is more classic and less fussy. Her latest bob/cum bangs hairstyle and her short cropped sweaters with girly dresses lack the dignity and sophistication her station demands. I did like the simple lines and color/fabric coat Thom Browne created for her ( but so different from his usual out-of-the-box creativity) for the inauguration. It had the high waisted line she is consistent with, and loves. Her choices in evening wear has been way more in the "ball park" and her hairstyles that reveal her forehead are much more becoming, if not necessarily cutting-edge. Being fashionable could be so much lovlier when the emphasis is on simplicity, quality and rather than constantly shifting looks to surprise the public as do many entertainers (i.e. Madonna)--better to establish what truly flatters. In the First Lady's case I think she shines when her long figure line is accentuated and unbroken-- and her face is unhindered by "runway" coifs .
Deborah Needleman, is T:The New York Times Style Magazine’s new editor-in-chief.
Friday, January 18, 2013
And The Fiscal Times, posted today that "seniors"-Old people!" would be the subject of her debut issue. I'm not loving that shock value language...but I do laud the effort, and await to see if the subject is dealt with in a hipper more modern view than I've seen it so far. Let's raise the bar, so that those of us that are over 50 can finally get the aesthetic attention that --maybe-- will finally make a difference. Something I tried and still try daily in my work.
"It’s time to officially redefine hip, which is clearly not reserved only for the young. “Hip” is changing, as we saw in a recent spate of appearances by pop culture’s finest, from James Bond to Mick Jagger and my personal favorite, the film “The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel,” which featured a star-studded cast of seniors who ventured to India for an active, exciting and awesome new period of life."
The extent she shops, and the diversity of resources and items she seeks--really depends on the woman and how into style she is. It also depends on where she lives.Shopping in brick and mortar stores still allows for your senses-- like touch--to actively participate. But I believe that the web has opened many opportunities for those who live where great shops are not available. A website dedicated to the aging woman is more positioned to offer diverse designers than a boutique (but less than a department store). My philosophy is all about the mix and diversity--- so upon reading about www.Halsbrook.com in the NY Times Sunday Styles and The Daily Beast (good publicity!) I decided to check it out. My take? The best of the brands offered was Max Mara. The rest was ho-hum. No edgy spark that you would find at Net-A-Porter or even great basics. Having said that I know that for a conservative woman who is not apt to mix and match from J Crew, Target, and Ralph Lauren with Prada, Etro, or Brunello Cucinelli and on and on....this may be an option (it reminded me of Doncaster, Worth etc). Would Lauren Hutton shop that way? I doubt it. Does she see the value of simplicity, as pairing a white shirt, white jeans and sheer gray shawl offers? Probably.
I still don't love the term "mature" "older" or least of all "senior", and maintain there is only one way to shop, and that is a la carte (with a good eye for what's modern, youthful, and ageless).
...were Julianne Moore stunning in a Tom Ford dress, Jessica Alba in an Oscar de la Renta dress and amazing Harry Winston diamonds, Ann Hathaway in Chanel and Kate Hudson in Alexander McQueen. Most of the men got it right for a change...better and better! Matt Lauer (Today Show) , Leonardo DeCaprio, and Robert Pattinson amongst them.
I loved Kerry Washington in Chanel, and Samantha Guthrie in Badgley Mischka ( Today Show) stood out as lovely.
...I feel both nostalgic for the days when a creative job was just a phone call away, and happiness that I have more autonomy these days. But I feel I'm reading about a kindred spirit with a humble voice--as an artist and as a woman. Grace loves cats--I love dogs--and we both see the aging process as a part of life. She may not share my avoidance of the "black uniform" but she shares my attitude about less make-up and relative naturalness. No need for over-the-top "costumes" posing as style-- to garner attention because you might be of "advanced age" (although in fairness you might say-- her shock of red frizzy hair against the so pale complexion and black uniform makes for instant attention grabbing visuals..and a signature look) She does Pilates, has manicures/pedicures while adhering to healthy vanity. She never loses her aesthetic eye and continues to evolve. All that with the necessary sense of humor to boot. I recommend the book.
The late Nora Ephron wrote a book about it and brought her humor to a subject that many women focus on. Especially if plastic surgery is not an option.
Personal style is a way to deal with such challenges. Blythe Danner was cited in Stylegoesstrong.com as proof that it is much about where you guide and hide. As I showed on my "real person" model Nola in "Forever Cool"...
One might assume the most obvious way is to wear a turtleneck . You can cover up almost everything to the chin. But for anyone without a firm jutting square jaw it could pull your skin and make matters actually worse.
"But there are more ways to hide your neck. Here are a few:
Turn up your collar. Look at how this works for Blythe Danner. While it doesn't cover the neck, her shirt collar disguises it and draws the focus up to the face.That's why I also prefer polo shirts or other tops that frame the neck and can be zipped down to create a V shape instead of plain t- shirts etc.
Use a scarf. Again, it doesn't have to cover every inch to work (see how Blythe Danner is wearing hers.)
Add something bold. Put on a chunky necklace or bib necklace to add distraction to the neck.
Wear a cowl neckline, or form a long scarf to effect a frame-- but loosely.
Inexpensive rainboots can be your best fall style buy.
Friday, October 26, 2012
I loved the Hunter line forever, it seems. They are classic, ageless, modern, youthful, also useful, and give support. They are featured in green in "Steal This Style". Today many firms are taking their cue from them--Chloe, Burberry, Ralph Lauren, Gucci are just some that have made stylish, relatively inexpensive rain styles--that i LOVE! I included a few puffer looks from Burberry that I think go well with the look...