Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Fashion Diary : Flooded 01/10/09

Ahoy from waterworld Siem Reap!

It rained for two days and the town's not spared from the wet rage of Ketsana. We didn't have electricity and water yesterday and I wasn't able to go out of the house because it just rained and rained. Thank God it stopped today for us to be able to go to town and stock up on more supplies. We had the water pump fixed, the electricity connected and earlier on when the power was still out had our cellphones charged in our neighbor.

Centertown is still 10 minutes away and we had to walk a good distance to get a brave tuktuk to bring us there. We just had to do a fashion diary:


Top: DP s/s 10 hoodie and Topshop tank

Pants: Levi's

Accessories: Vivienne Westwood bag, Havaianas flip flops



Dress: Wanderlust

Accessories: Marc by MJ bag, Bench watch, Charles&Keith shades


Our official photographer, Spool Artist, Loven Ramos. Read his own account here.

Tee: from Manila

Shorts: Bench

Bag: from Beijing

Accessories: shades & watch from Bench


Elizabeth of Wanderlust

Top: Wanderlust with Marc by Marc Jacobs military jacket

Bags: Wanderlust, Le Sportsac

Shoes: rubber booties from Wanderlust

After doing our groceries and making sure we got everything covered in terms of cleaning agents for the apres flood clean-up, candles in case we lose power again and loads of chichirya for the boring wait for everything to normalize, we passed by Ground Coffee just to recharge before the wade back home. Unfortunately, our tuktuk died on us on the way and we had to walk in a stretch of knee deep water until we got another tuktuk to bring us straight home. Our staff were waiting for us to get their salary, some of them with water entering their houses. But we're more lucky than most. Channel News Asia reported 11 people were killed here in Cambodia related to the flood. It's worst in the Philippines and Vietnam. If you're a Christian it's really a testing of your faith and everyone is urged to pray.

Of course, the Filipino in us couldn't help but keep a light mood despite this tragic calamity. To keep our sanity above water, so to speak.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Philippine Fashion Week fall/winter 09 Womenswear Top Picks

Again, I present my biased choices, from the collections of PFW f/w 09, if i were a girl. It includes:


When this cardi went out of the runway, I instantly fell in love with it. It's fasyon but not overt. Just enough of a statement piece. I think Czarina calls it the 'palabok', likened to a Pinoy noodle dish. It's so textural and tactile to look at. I want one ;) The whole look is chica!


From his 30-piece collection, the section I adored was the Chinoi inflected one. The pieces grouped here were peppered in the collection but in my opinion more stronger when together. It did remind me of Vivienne Tam, though, which is not a bad thing because it's really difficult to work on such theme without coming up with something that screams Chinese New Year costumes. It's the versatility, play of print and the mix of colors that made me fall in love with these pieces.


It's easy to say that Dimple's pieces are sculptural. But there's also something quite emotional about it. Not only are they statement pieces like wearable art but it's something empowering and quite direct in revealing about the wearer's predilection for intellectual dressing. It's for women who are confident about their personality, who embrace fashion and is not afraid to be looked at. Just 'cute, girly, sexy' style wouldn't cut for these women.


I love the raw statement Regine is saying here. I love the drapes and barbaric mode the pieces convey. There's something quite 'ethnic' about the pieces but in a sort of naive way. It really looks fresh to me simply because many of the collections I've seen seems to be so overdesigned or overstyled in my eyes. Remove the clothes from the runway context or the way it's styled and it wouldn't be great as individual pieces, non?


My top choice goes to this collection because it's pieces I want and looks I see that's grounded on the idea of modern dressing. Love the bright red pop mixed with graphic black.

It's so sensible in it's simplicity without being too common. The woven vest enhances the cool effect of the whole ensembles.

It's chic! Wear a skinny jacket and pants under the sheath and it becomes another style.

Totally pragmatic and practical. I don't know why Norman is still not signed up with some local brand to do a sensible capsule collection.

And, of course, there's always that essential rock&roll vibe from him that I simply adore.

photos by Bruce Casanova of this post and this. Thank you!

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Philippine Fashion Week fall/winter 09 Menswear Top Picks

Playing fashion editor here, I'm choosing my biased men's wear top picks from the shows I've seen during Philippine Fashion Week fall/winter 09 collections.


I loved the restraint and minimalist direction Aries injected into his collection. He's known to be a very good pattern magician but sometimes gets the better of him because of complicated seaming that render the garment seems unwearable and a tad costume-y. Thank goodness he held back! The subtle degrade of the first look and the use of jersey makes it very versatile. I would just add a tailored jacket if the occasion calls for it.

The ochre hue for the second one looks warm and the deep V neckline suggests the piece could double as a cardigan. The whole ensemble looks fashionable but very comfortable.


Stylist to the stars Bang Pineda creates a wonderful melange of separates that gives nod to graphic sensibility.

The muted palette enhances the impact. The longer cut of the tees are practical to cover privates that may bulge (or lack thereoff) when paired with legging-like stretch pants.

This scribble print, sleeveless variation on the trench coat is my top choice, as well as, one of the polka dot tee.


For her men's, Dimple didn't go all out, over-the-top like her womenswear. My pick is this subtle reworking of a button-down shirt paired with gingham ruched pants. The vestigial add-on just gives the look a much needed omph without sacrificing wearability.


Lorico went down the deconstructed route and came up with a collection that's conceptual but peppered with individual pieces that can be integrated into one's wardrobe.

He played with sheer and opaque fabrics in muted colors, which compliments the hard tailoring and soft draping he combines in most of his looks.

This vest is one versatile piece you can dress-up or down.


One of the few local designers I wear, Norman Noriega, stuck to what he loves best: minimal and quirky detailed clothing that's understated.

There's a sort of boxy feel to the cuts and silhouette that he showed this season. Notable also are his use of matte and shiny fabrics for contrast.

I ended up getting this strappy vest made of garter, satin and ribbon. I love how I can just pair it with a simple tee and instantly makes me look fasyon but done effortlessly.

Don't Judge a Book if You Are Not a Judge

The weather has been slightly less sunny here in SR due to daily rainshowers. The temperature much more forgiving for light layering of clothing, although, the weather can go mental and suddenly all sunny after a dark, brooding moment. Hence, the need for peel anytime pieces, like a cardigan or hoodie. That's not what this post is all about, though.

The rain has been consistent this week and nothing more I want to do than to curl up in my bed with a good stack of magazines and books. Only if I didn't have much work to attend to, which is the opposite. Anyway, here's a few books I want to acquire (although it would also be nice to receive them from friends, non?) because all are so chic and fasyon.

I'm dying to get this one. Raf Simons is one intellectual designer that fascinates me. From the reviews I've read, the book somehow explores the complex influences that Raf has woven into his designs which touch on youth culture and alternative movements. Whatever are those, I want to know.

Maison Martin Margiela by Rizzoli. A must for MMM fans like moi. Will be launched late October. Anyone?! I NEED this!

I've borrowed this book from Ignacio Loyola before and liked it very much. When I got the chance to buy it at Fully Booked I changed my mind and got the i-D book instead. Now I'm regreting it because it chronicles lots of my fave designers like Martin Margiela, Ann Demuelemeester, Veronique Branquinho and Raf Simons (with his designs on the cover). The MMM interview about fashion was so exhaustive it even discussed hardcore fashion intellectualism (pretensions, I suppose?) such as fashion vs. theater, fashion and the body and similar nose bleed topics.

The Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit exhibited a wonderful array of Rei Kawakubo's designs for Comme des Garcons last year and they produced this delish book to go with it. The exhibit was curated by Harold Koda, head curator of Met's The Costume Institute, and it documents a lot of Kawakubo's key designs that are still so influential today.

Published by Rizzoli in 1990, I presume it documents the early design vocabulary that Rei Kawakubo and Comme des Garcons are known for. It will be interesting to review her older designs and somehow compare them with the progression that she and her label have explored now.

Can someone make a book about Helmut Lang, already?!

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Mags and Medals

All my friends know I'm a fashion magazine fiend. I starve myself just to buy them. Goodness knows I bug my friends to buy me this, get me that, etc. Recently, Liz got me the Fantastic Man Helmut Lang issue I've been dying to get. Kiks is in Japan and got me Vogue Hommes Japan issue 1 and 3, already. Loven (stuck in waterworld Manila but hopefully back in SR by Monday) is overweight from the Preview, Mega, Garage and Metro I harassed my friends to give to him for moi. And I haven't made up my mind yet what to ask Lyka and the Stepsisters in San Francisco since my Ms. International friend, Gibsy Cruz Araneta Colliseum, is going there this coming October.

That's why I'm so happy tonight to receive this loot from Thailand national treasure and Tourism Authority muse, Kawadjan, ITSELF! I'm poring over 5 CHEEZE magazines, which is possibly the best chronicler of Bangkok street style and fashion. Super duper inspiring! I swear, everyone's so chica (K, fave ko yung military issue).

He also gave me two medal - medalan pins for my A.P.C. military jacket which I'm planning to wear tomorrow. Can't wait. I did expect a Balenciaga bag with the loot but I don't know what happened. K, dear, more to come, please! ;)

And I popped by the gym for a quick core muscle work-out and got this Vanity Fair issue with a Farrah Fawcett tribute. The other double cover is Michael Jackson, whcih I presume has sold-out. I browsed inside and there was a haute couture article by Amy Fine Collins I'll leisurely devour later. There was another issue with Jackie O. on the cover which I plan to get on Monday.

Friday, September 25, 2009

M by MJ bag

As promised to my baghag friends here's a much clearer picture of the Marc by Marc Jacobs bag that Eliz gave to Faith from New York. It's lovely!

I want one, too, in a muted color. Calling my generous friends and readers. I seem to remember one of you promised to give me a Marc Jacobs. Asan na?! ;)

Start From The Very Beginning

Inspired by Kawadjan and his friend Heide's blog posts about books and their corresponding first lines, here and here, respectively, I now share with you my own list of fave books:

1. In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.

- Holy Bible

2. The past is an endless source of compelling ideas and creativity.

- Cream x Maison Martin Margiela

3. Louis Vuitton was born in 1821 in Anchay, a hamlet in Jura, a region of mountains and forests.

- Louis Vuitton: The Birth of Modern Luxury by Paul - Gerard Pasols

4. Muji was born in Japan.

- Brands A to Z by Muji

5. Modern menswear is primarily concerned with communicating individuality.

- Modern Menswear by Hywel Davies

6. Spring Collection.

- Fashion by Karen Salmansohn

7. 'People wear my clothes to make a statement', explained Yohji Yamamoto, summing up, in the laconic style we have become familiar with over the last twenty or more years - a contribution to fashion that constitutes an exploration of fashion itself.

- Yohji Yamamoto by Francois Baudot

8. Although I was for years a fashion sittings editor, I was never particularly good at it.

- Stylist: Interpreters of Fashion by Sarah Mower

9. May in Ayemenem is a hot, brooding month.

- God of Small Things by Arundhati Roy

10. Cristobal Balenciaga was always destined to be exceptional.

- Balenciaga Paris by Pamela Golbin

Although, most of my choices are fashion related books I am very particular in acquiring it. I often don't like encyclopedic tomes that generally lump several designers into a specific category like years, style or silly concepts. I much prefer the ones that trace the development of one particular designer or brand. I love when it discusses the processes and development involved in making the clothes. I want to see the obsessiveness of the author in detailing all aspects involving the subject matter. Like the Balenciaga one, it even includes picture of receipts. Or the Muji one complete with campaign explanations, detailed product lists by year, etc. I view a book as some magical instrument to help me understand a world that's so different than mine. What's your fave books?