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Sunday, September 28, 2014

DC Fashion Week: Corjor International at the National Archives

Were you aware of D.C. Fashion Week?  September has been flooded with the runway reports from New York, Paris, London and Milan that the designers from our nation’s capital are largely ignored.
I had the fortune of stopping by Washington D.C. and checking out the kickoff event at the National Archives where participating designers mingled over cocktails and enjoyed Corjor International’s runway show.

D.C. Fashion Week may not have a lot of well-known brands, but it represents emerging designers from all over the globe.  It also spotlights modest fashion that complies with religious standards of certain cultures, but can be seriously stylish, even if mainstream fashion media doesn’t cover it.
In the United States, there are not many venues more impressive than the grand rotunda housing the Constitution as a backdrop to the models.  Corjor International’s designer Ean Williams named his label with a combination of his children’s names.  His fashion show was a combination of all the different lines he works on, from bridal, to menswear to evening wear.  He also acts as the ambassador for D.C. Fashion Week by sending out information and communicating personally to press inquiries. 
Unfortunately, the dramatic venue was not built for fashion event photography.  The dome and polished stone room resulted in too much feedback from all audio announcements, so the press pit had no idea what was said during the presentation.  The theatrical lighting forced less experienced photographers to use their flash and ruin most of everyone else’s images.  I barely had anything usable to show you from what was otherwise a beautiful show.  Ean Williams clearly has a love of textured fabrics and is glamorous silhouettes. His menswear was offered tailoring in unusual palettes. 

If you are not too fatigued from the labels you know at the major fashion week offerings, take a chance to discover the ones you don’t know at D.C. Fashion Week.

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Wearables at Maker Faire NYC

light up shoes
Maker Faire is that giant science fair you dreamed of as a child.  The sprawling festival of crafts, DIY, science and geekery took place at the New York Hall of Science this past weekend.  Wearable tech had a major presence at New York Fashion week and many of the original concepts got their start from places like Maker Faire.

iLuminate is a dance troupe whose signature look is the light up costumes the performers wear
onstage.  Guests could try on helmets and shoes tricked out with the glowing El-wires stitched to the base pieces.  A few cast members were on hand to demonstrate the effect in close-up.

ezgi ucar

Ezgi Ucar is a graduate student at Parsons School of Design in technology.  Her focus is on multi-sensory experience design.  Her necklace and jewelry pieces double as a musical instrument.  The contrast "beads" are actually keys for different musical notes.  For someone like me who loves to play with her accessories, being able to play my favorite tune with my idle fingers could be a blessing (or curse) to whoever gets to stand next to me on the subway...

pearlie mae mermaid

Do you want to be a mermaid? Pearlie Mae took mermaid culture to new heights with her beautiful hand-crafted costumes.  She created molds for different sized scales and hand-poured the glitter rich silicone individually.  The end result is as close to a real mermaid tail as can exist in our realm.  The tails are functional and Pearlie Mae goes swimming in them.


Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Badgley Mischka's Silver Anniversary - Spring 2015

A quarter century together!  Designers Mark Badgley and James Mischka may have tied the knot last year but their life and label have been official for 25 years.   My former draping teacher at Parsons had fond memories of watching the two of them work together at a corner table in the classroom in the years before I attended the school myself.

The spring 2015 collection of Badgley Mischka was a parade of elegant day looks and dream gowns.  Fluid silk pants and flirty skirts were paired with tweed jackets with motorcycle styling or luxe cardigans for daytime.  Evening wear had a gorgeous palette of light purple, pale blue, different shades of grey and caramel. 

Many of the bodices or skirts were lavishly embellished with jewels, moonstones and satin flowers.  The embroidery was layered on top of lace and tulle.  Rich beading was also used to accent the key print of an elaborate cherry blossom pattern.

Accessories were almost as impressive.  There was a very sophisticated backpack that upgrades the entire category.  There was a giant jeweled bow on a shoulder.  Big clear Lucite cuff bracelets were made luxurious with shining stones.  Small box clutch handbags had a subtle, holographic finish and decorated with rhinestone motifs.  Shoes had delicate straps, often two-toned with python finish leather and embellished with jewels or shiny hardware. 

The show’s finale included a shower of balloons and a surprise appearance of Naomi Campbell who walked in Badgley Mischka’s first runway show.  Now I can’t wait to see their golden anniversary show!
photos by Mariana Leung

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Cruba by Mira Becker

cruba fashion

What a treat NY Fashion Week can be when it reunites you with old-time school chums.  Mira Backer was in my class at Parsons School of Design.  I always remembered her wicked sense of humor and cool design sense.

Her label CRUBA hails from Berlin, Germany.  She proudly manufactures her collection within the country as well as in Poland.  She uses beautiful silks and cashmere, along with innovative closures like transparent and rubber zippers.  Her signature look then and now has been her use of drape.  Mira likes the juxtaposition of a slender fitted knit on one side of the body and an artistic drape of silk on the other.

Her key prints for spring 2015 was a quilted floral, which was quite a departure from her comfort zone.  The other print that was executed on silk and textured cotton was one that initially looked like pretty colors in an abstract pattern on white ground.  It was actually based on a photograph of garbage blown across snow, a way of making something beautiful from something discarded.  Of course, Mira jokingly referred to it as her “White Trash” print privately. 

cruba fashion germanyOther key pieces in her collection were the hand knit sweater top made from multiple strands of cords in different sizes.  Tomato red was a hot color next to some of the neutrals and navy.  Mira Becker explained that the German fashion customer was all about impeccably finished clothing.  The irony is that the many of her customers are New Yorkers who have wandered their way into her boutique in Berlin’s gallery district.

Bravo and come visit often Mira!
photos by Mariana Leung

Monday, September 22, 2014

Angel Sanchez Spring 2015

angel sanchez fashion
angel sanchez ss15
Angel Sanchez is best known for his knock- out evening dresses and beautiful bridal gown collections.  His collection was light and colorful, filled with stylish dresses and separates perfect for day to evening social occasions and balmy summer nights. 

The inspiration and color palette of the collection was light and the colors in the sky. Light blue, pink, yellow, and white were the dominant colors in the collection, along with exotic floral prints. Sanchez chose a gorgeous double-faced canvas in pink that resembled Radiant Orchid, the 2014 color of the year from Pantone. Bright yellow piping on seams and unusual closures accentuated solid color garments. Unexpected cutouts, piping, and embroidery added texture and versatility to the garments and the collection.

With so many standouts in this collection, I found it challenging to choose my favorites. There was the three piece outfit of pink Faille coat, bandeau top, and double faced canvas shorts. I loved the crepe gown, in a bright citron color, with cutouts and high front slits. One of Sanchez's signature evening gowns; an embroidered organza gown with piping in citron yellow was stunning.

angel sanchez
photos by Mariana Leung
There was a lot of wearable tech at NY Fashion Week this season, with technology disguised in accessories.  At this show, the fashion accessories looked like tech components.  The bright neon citron color was seen in sculptured necklaces and bracelet cuffs.  The tech fabric of neoprene was also integrated into more classically tailored evening wear.

Angel Sanchez does it again and delivers a wearable collection of feminine & elegant clothes...perfect for the modern woman.

Gracias por la increíble colección de Sr. Sanchez!
Elaine Fioravanti of Best Dressed Ginger
Reporting for Ms. FABulous.


Miz Mooz Shoes Loves New York

miz mooz fall
yoga nyc skyline
 I couldn’t dream of a better New York night than one spent with the team of Miz Mooz shoes this past week.  It was a warm, early evening where a bunch of my fellow bloggers and I stretched our way through an invigorating yoga class.  We were absolutely spoiled with the backdrop of the sun setting on the Manhattan skyline.

That’s the sentiment I have with Miz Mooz shoes.  They are a homegrown New York brand that is like the savvy girlfriend that first welcomed you to Gotham and took you shopping.  Miz Mooz is where many ladies got outfitted to begin their sophisticated fashion girl life and the telltale bright orange bag.  Their shoes have that distinct vintage styling and quirky details that you recognize on the streets Downtown.  They are built to be comfortable and sturdy because New Yorkers walk everywhere. 

Miz Mooz had their fall styles up for a tryout during the yoga session.  There were many boot options, from short booties to knee high lengths. I love the retro closures of the buttons along the side on styles like the Normandy and Denise.  I used to see styles like this in movies, vowing to buy them when I became a grown-up.  The “Flirt” bootie had a curved, wrapped zipper detail.   They were all made from hand-finished leather.  There were of course the basic dark black, brown and grey colors that every New Yorker owns.  If you want to branch out, they also offer rich bright reds and blues online to add that pop accent to your outfit.

grey vintage shoesMy favorite shoe for fall has to be the Kimmy, with its T-strap and curved heel.  T-straps always remind me of ballroom dance, the curved heels give me support without looking clunky.  The heart-shaped detail at the front and they are offered in grey or black just works with my wardrobe. 

Like every Gotham girl, she longs to travel after she conquers the city.  Miz Mooz shoes are now available all over the country and online.  I like knowing that wherever I end up, I can always have my New York city favorites right next to me.
 Disclosure: This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Miz Mooz Shoes.
Photos by Mariana Leung