Centre Stage

Paris Takes Back Fashion

Balmain SS15

Givenchy, Lanvin, Yves Saint Laurent, and Chanel have always been on our lips, but not a fashion force for a long time, until now. Not long ago our favourite labels and names came from Milan. Starlets wore shape-cut Gucci, Fashion sophisticates wore Prada, and party-goers wore Cavalli. How the fashion world has changed.

Lanvin 2 ss15

Lanvin ss15

Doir Homme ss15

With Men’s Spring Summer 2015 global fashion shows in full swing. Paris held the most buzz. Everyone was waiting for Givenchy, YSL, and Lanvin to take centre stage. Paris had fallen out of fashion for many years. Couture has always been a Paris staple, but Italian designers had even taken over couture, hence Valentino Couture and Versace Atelier. The fashion set were all-a-buzz for Milan creations.

YSL2 ss15 YSL ss15 YSL 3 SS15 YSL SS15

However, evolution is what fashion is all about.  Fashion houses in Paris dusted off their atelier and re-opened shop. John Galliano rescued Dior, and Tom Ford breathed life back into YSL. Yet these labels were already house hold names, just out of step with mainstream fashion at that moment. What is new is that names like Balmain and Balenciaga on fashion followers lips.  French brands have become fashionable again with full force.

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The love affair with  Paris is not only just for women. Men’s fashion has also been taken over by French houses. What man doesn’t own a Givenchy something? Even street fashion has poured out of Paris. Hip-Hop culture has left American brands for french Labels as well, so you know winds have changed.

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From Paris With Love

MC

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Fashion Snob…

Family Affair 

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Sometimes I think I am a fashion snob. I was born with fashion inside me. I do not know how to live without fashion. When some one asks me who I dress for, I always say me. I do not know who else I would dress for, although I had a small dent in my youth when I wanted to be like everyone, but that lasted only a year. 

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Fashion is such a personal expression. You carve your voice with fashion, find a place with fashion, and explore the world through fashion. I was reading an article about 90’s fashion. I guess it’s a new movement in fashion. The article glamourized the days of 90’s fashion, pre-internet media, although technology was a subject, it had not taken over. 

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The article spoke to how fashion seemed more of an insider event. The outside world didn’t care what was going on in fashion. The crowd was more elite and selective. For a moment, I romanticized that moment in fashion while reading the article. I thought about my first time at NYFW in 2010. I was so excited and full of anticipation. I did feel a lot of people flocked to the venue to get photographed, and inside I felt like there were a lot of sencesters, not fashion followers. Yet what is a true fashion follower?

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I am a fashion follower because I went to school to study design, or because I read every book, magazine and article pertaining to fashion? My pal for fashion week loved clothes, but had no clue who anyone was. I would point out all these amazing editors and reporter, but he only cared about which celebrity was front row. I was sad, but we both still enjoyed the event. 

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Reading the article I wished to be one of those people in 90’s fashion era watching supermodels walk the runway and knowing all their names, editors scrambling to write articles to meet daily press deadlines, and a cast of socialites front row. The article poo-pooed all the new media blast from every angle. And I thought for a moment, I am a fashion snob?

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I love that I can see fashion on every level; runway to street. I think most fashion followers today do not know the past or history of every house. They do not know how to describe clothes, only to say “it’s cool.” The vocabulary of fashion has changed, both good and bad, but fashion is about change. Chanel stopped designing when she felt that there was no long anything new to say. Than she came back with the “Town Suit,” revolutionizing fashion. I think she would be proud to see fashion and media blend today. 

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With S/S 15 collections underway, I picked some of my favourite street-snaps of todays fashion moments. This is the power of fashion today. I can sit and observe what is happening in the world from my new shop in Vancouver Atelier3, and still enjoy what is happening around the world. Do I still hit the shows, of course, who would pass up the chance to see walking art. The “cool” thing now is that walking art is on every corner! 

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MC

 

Raw Edges: The Leading Man

Top Five Fashionable Asian Celebrities

A few months ago, I wrote a paper about Asian men and North Americans cinematic depiction of Asian male sexuality–yes boring. Therefore, I thought I would do something more fun to dispel this myth. This week, while watching Real Steel, I was taken aback by Asian male actor, Karl Yune, who was so stylish. However, he barely spoke, he just looked hot!! I looked him up, and I was shocked to discover that his brother is my adolescent dream man, Asian American actor, Rick Yune–I still hate Lisa Ling for dating him.

Karl Yune and Rick Yune: Red Carpet
Karl Yune and Rick Yune: Red Carpet
Karl Yune: 2011_real_steel_047
Karl Yune: 2011_real_steel_047
Rick Yune w/ Korean Actor/Musician Rain
Rick Yune w/ Korean Actor/Musician Rain

When magazines release their “Hunk List” of male actors and singers, it is always a group of typical North American men, so I thought I would create my list of hot, stylish, Asian male actors and performers.

First on my list, of course, is singer and performer, Taeyang. He came into the North American spotlight with his hit song, Wedding Dress–I hope it’s Vera. I know I bought mine. Korean stars always have a very trendy look, but Taeyang seems to push the edge of the envelope, it could also be that I am blinded by his smoldering eyes.

Taeyang
Taeyang
Taeyang
Taeyang
Taeyang
Taeyang
Taeyang
Taeyang
Taeyang
Taeyang
Taeyang
Taeyang
Taeyang
Taeyang

Next, Harry Shum Jr. from television show Glee. I don’t know if I consider him stylish, but he is hot, so let’s go with that. He can dance, so we know he has rhythm, he can “act-ish”, so we know he’s not that good at faking it, and he has great abs, okay all criteria complete; style stamp of approval. If you don’t agree with me, this information may give him a boost. In an online poll by UCLA of “heterosexual men,” Shum was voted most likely for straight men to go “gay” with. Therefore, according to Sex and The City character, Samantha Jones,  first the gays–me, then the girls, and then industry follows. I guess Shum has a big career ahead of him by that logic?

harry-shum-jr
harry-shum-jr
harry-shum-jr
harry-shum-jr
Harry Shum Jr.
Harry Shum Jr.

Third on my list is 19-year-old, actor musician Ezra Miller. He was a new find for me. His style is what I love about being young: playful, corky, and unapologetic. I hate watching red carpets, it’s always the same perfect dress, so I love to find a twist, and Miller is it.

Ezra Miller
Ezra Miller
Ezra Miller
Ezra Miller
Ezra Miller
Ezra Miller

The number four, in Asian culture, is considered bad luck because,  of its connection to death, but to me death is a new beginning. Which brings be to the birth of my fourth fashionable Asian male, HUNK Paolo Roldan. I have watched this gorgeous man for a couple of years now, and I am embarrassed to admit, I learned his name today.  I guess when you’re lusting, you forget to ask names. He captured my attention because he is on every major fashion runway for men. Second blunder on my part, he’s Canadian and from Toronto. Here on the West Coast we’ve been preoccupied with Taiwanese-Canadian model, Godfrey Gao, he’s from our side. Alas, while Godfrey was taking up our time, Toronto was producing Paolo.

Paolo Roldan
Paolo Roldan
Paolo Roldan
Paolo Roldan
Paolo Roldan
Paolo Roldan
Paolo Roldan
Paolo Roldan

Last but not least, is the most fashionable Asian male celebrity. He is the reason Asian actors have a voice in North America, and you guessed it, Bruce Lee. When I was designing clothes in middle school, I would pull out his movies for inspiration. Always fluid with his moves, Lee’s style is effortless. He is way before my time, but ahead of the pack. To me, his style is classic Asian celebrity. No one did shirtless like him!!!

Bruce Lee
Bruce Lee
Bruce Lee
Bruce Lee
Bruce Lee
Bruce Lee
Bruce-Lee-and-Brandon-Lee
Bruce-Lee-and-Brandon-Lee

Don’t agree with my top five. Send me your comments and add your list below. I will do another review later,and who knows, maybe your pick will hit my next list.

MC.

Muse Profile: Jacqueline Conoir

Vancouver’s Première Designer

It’s a lot of fun checking out stylish cities of the world, and attending famous fashion week schedules, but I live in Vancouver. In my own little city, known for many amazing things, fashion is not always one of them. However, we have been blessed with a handful of stylish designers that have earned a place in our city and internationally. Jacqueline Conoir’s designer, Rozemerie Cuevas, is one Vancouver designer on top.  Established in 1985, Rozemerie Cuevas has taken her collection, named after her grandmother to extraordinary heights.

Jacqueline Conoir: Spring/Summer 2012
Jacqueline Conoir: Spring/Summer 2012
Jacqueline Conoir: Spring/Summer 2012

This Spring Rozemerie created a new exciting younger collection named, JAC, which is edgy and fresh. Both collections, Jacqueline Conoir and JAC, service modern women fashion needs, but each reflect individual flare. JAC is full of fun and interesting fabrications, while Jacqueline Conoir, still fun, is upscale sophistication.

JAC Collection: Spring/Summer 2012
JAC Collection: Spring/Summer 2012
JAC collection

I have used both collections for styling jobs, and it’s always a home run when I hit the studio to pull.  From print ads to red carpets, Rozemerie has proven that she is a stylist dream, while dressing the everyday women. Her new 8000sf boutique studio services clients and wardrobe needs with personal stylist that are always on hand to guide you through your shopping experience.

MUSE CLOSET STYLING: Jacquline Conoir Design
MUSE CLOSET STYLING: Jacquline Conoir Design
Jacquline Conoir Staff Stylist;  model in middle styled by staff

Here are some looks from her Spring/Summer 2012 collection, and a Muse Closet exclusive video from her Fall/Winter 2012 runway collections.

Jacqueline Conoir: Spring/Summer 2012
Jacqueline Conoir: Spring/Summer 2012
Jacqueline Conoir: Spring/Summer 2012
JAC collection
RozeMerieCuevas

Vancouver Sample Sale

Hey!!

Looking to find some good deals for spring, check out Y&A sample sale. I went yesterday and grabbed some things myself. Take some time to check out the other side of fashion.

Sample Sale
Sample Sale

Closet Profile: Masc

Face First

Source: L'Uomo Vogue 2009
Source: L'Uomo Vogue 2009

Well, one thing we can all agree on is that January is a new start. We decide what we want to change and how we go about changing. I don’t know about the rest of you, but I need to get a new shave kit together. I know most guys never want to talk about their skin; it’s girly, sissy, lame. The unspoken truth is that most men care about their skin and what they look like. One basic point that most men must deal with, regardless of their skin regimen, is shaving. You may not do it every day, you may only do it once a year, but at some point you will have to pull out that blade.

Source: L'Uomo Vogue 2009
Source: L'Uomo Vogue 2009

In adolescence, we learn to shave from our father, older brother, or no one. No matter what, most likely they didn’t know much themselves: razor, foam can or soap, and away you go. STOP! Here is a mini tutorial to get you started to the right shave.

Source: L'Uomo Vogue 2009
Source: L'Uomo Vogue 2009
Source: L'Uomo Vogue 2009
Source: L'Uomo Vogue 2009

I stopped into Masc, Vancouver’s secret weapon to men’s skin care, to speak with skin care expert Jamie Beuthin about what was needed to start a shave kit.

Step 1: Scrub

Prep skin with scrub. This will help slough-off dead skin and allow facial hair to stand at attention; it’s like Viagra for the skin. Masc specialist, Jamie Beuthin, recommends Jack Black’s face scrub—my personal favorite as well. My suggestion would be to make sure you dampen the skin with warm water before you apply scrub, then apply a dime size amount to skin (more if needed), and then rinse with warm water. This will help to open hair follicles and raise facial hair—it also feels great! If you’re lazy like me, just do it all in the shower. Invest in a fog-free mirror.

MASC: Jack Black Scrub
MASC: Jack Black Scrub

Step 2: Shave Cream

A good shave cream will protect your skin from the blade, ensuring you receive an optimal cut during the shave. Jamie recommends GEO. F. Trumper’s shave cream, which comes in five amazing scents: almond, sandalwood, rose, and (most popular) lime and coconut. Also, Jamie suggests the E-Shave brush to help gain lather longevity during your shave. For me, a shave brush is a great way of extending your scrub. The brush helps to get your beard extra prepped for the razor. Yes boys, foreplay even for your skin!

MASC: Shave Cream (GEO.F.Trumper)& Shave Brush (E Shave)
MASC: Shave Cream (GEO.F.Trumper)& Shave Brush (E Shave)

Step 3: The Shaver

This is a debate among many men—disposable shaver, electric, straight edge—all personal choices based mostly on skin comfort, accessibility and usage. This tutorial is based on blade razors. (I will have another one for electric guys!) Jamie recommends using the Merkur Shaver, which comes in four different finishes: nickel, brush, black, and polished. The benefits of this razor are expanded in a video tutorial with Jamie.

When you shave, you should try to go in the direction of the hair. The scrub prep will help you to see if your hair grows up or down. This will help you avoid those pesky ingrown hairs, if you regularly cleanse and moisturize your skin, your skin will thank you later with a smooth shave.

MASC: Merkur Shaver
MASC: Merkur Shaver

Step 4: Aftershave

Aftershave helps to calm your skin, prevent ingrown hairs, and helps to heal nicks after your shave. This is very important for skin health and prep for future shaving. Not just an up-sell at department stores. Jamie had three wonderful choices: Erye, Men’s Science, and Kyoku.

MASC: Aftershave; Eyre; Men's Science; Kyoku
MASC: Aftershave; Eyre; Men's Science; Kyoku

Use these tips to help get your best shave. Thanks Jamie for all the good advice. Now, guys go get your kit together!

Masc
Masc

MASC

433 Davie Street (Yaletown)

Vancouver, B.C.

T: 604.688.4555

E: info@shopmasc.com

www.shopmasc.com

Closet Confessions: Wedding Shoot

Test Shoot: Behind The Scene

I C U
I C U

Every so often I like to challenge myself with a styling project that is fresh. This past summer I had that chance while shooting my own personal photos. My photographer asked me to create a wedding dress of shopping bags for a magazine shoot. After a short pause, I accepted the challenge, and of course I only had seven days to complete the task. In the show, Mad Fashion, Chris March and his team also have a week to complete tasks, but they live in New York with everything at their doorstep, I need to have everything shipped to Vancouver.

Sketch
Sketch

My first line of defense was convincing Vera Wang to participate. I could only make a wedding dress of shopping bags from the number one wedding dress creator. Second mission, construct a team of craftsmen, Costume designer,Paul, and accessory designer, Kit, and myself as creative director—everyone needs a title. Last, create magic!

Boy Toy
Boy Toy
Fitting
Fitting

Now UPS, OMG… I hate them! Delayed service, l literary received my bags, which were my garment, a day before shooting—no pressure! With no time to fit the model, my male assistant doubled as fit model–saviour. Working through the entire night we finally finished our garment. The costume designer, Paul, amazing, he salvaged each bag to look like fabric, while accessory designer, Kit, created blooming rosettes out of Vera Wang tissue paper. The final result was breathtaking.

Primp
Primp
Model Dress
Model Dress

The two-day wedding shoot was fun because wedding magazines are always inspiring, as you’re creating a day of wonderment. Here are my photos from behind the scene.

Nice Day 4 a Wedding
Nice Day 4 a Wedding
Model Watch
Model Watch