Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Dior Homme does it again

I'm loving the fall/winter 2010/2011 Dior Homme collection. When Hedi Slimane parted ways with Dior Homme in 2007, I was a little nervous for the future of the range. I know when designers change, the general feel of the brand also changes. I wasn't really pleased with any of the Dior Homme collections since then...until now. I'm loving the style, the monochromatic pieces that are fashion forward without being too avant-garde, and especially the construction and tailoring of each piece. Here's what I love the most:

So you can associate a face with the name - here's Kris at the conculsion of his Fall/Winter show.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Puffy Fashion

I love puffy outerwear - big, down filled jackets, coats, and vests. They're incredibly warm, but are well ventilated so you don't sweat in all the wrong places! Unlike older, less flattering versions, newer models can also be figure flattering as well. You don't have to look like a marshmallow any more!

After sitting in the airport in Rome for a couple hours, it's obvious that Italians and Europeans alike love this puffed outwear as well. From the luxe Moncler, to the sporty Northface, personal style, age, and demographic all need not matter - this trend transcends them all.

And the puffed outerwear is not just for the ski slopes or other winter sports either. I love how technological fabrics look when mixed with formal ensembles - like a puffer vest over a suit. Here's a great example of a man I saw in Roma.

One thing for sure - Italians love their Woolrich brand. For nearly 180 years, the American outdoor garment powerhouse has been known for durable, quality wool products. Unlike the Woolrich of yesterday, today's Woolrich seems to be much more tailored, style centered, and definitely not inspired by the wilderness. So unexpected, and très chic.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

When in Rome

So I arrived in Rome yesterday morning safe and sober. I jokingly refer to Delta flights as "Club Delta" - because they usually involve preflight cocktails, some inflight entertainment and cocktails, and by the time you land, you're ready to rock! So I was happy to report that I arrived on the continent safely and more importantly sober.

I always think it's important - and a lesson in culture and globe trotting - to make some attempt to blend in to your host culture. And when a smartly dressed Italian woman asked me in Italian for directions - I think I fit the part. And in case you're wondering, I was able to direct her accurately and efficiently to the taxi stand she was looking for.

After nearly 90 minutes of waiting with my entire flight mates for our luggage to arrive in the airport, I made my way through customs control and went back upstairs to check in for my next flight - Roma a Sicilia. This segment would be on a discount Italian carrier. And by discount - I mean the entire round trip ticket was less than 50 Euros (with tax inclusive!). I knew I'd have limited baggage allowance - after all, most Italians aren't booking flights to rustic Sicily with more than 15 kilos of luggage - so I see the air carrier's point in charging for heavier bags.

While I was waiting in line to check in, I noticed that all the people in line with me were Italian. They looked Italian. They certainly sounded Italian. And they were all wearing sunglasses. So what's a guy to do?! When in Rome (literally)...

I put my sunglasses on and waited my turn to check in. Apparently this was the best choice I made all day. The young man and young woman behind the counter were so impressed that I "didn't look American and certainly didn't sound like an American" - whatever that's supposed to mean - and most of all, the young man loved my sunglasses. He wanted tot ry them on, but his coworker thought they should actually work and check others in for their flights. So as I lifted my suitcase onto the scale, the two started to laugh - apparently my 45 pound bag was a tad over the 15 kilo allowance - so I just motioned to the bag, smiled, and said "c'e' sole e la moda italiana - there is sunshine and italian fashion" - and they laughed, handed me my boarding pass, and wished me on my way - without paying the 75 euro penalty as required - and all because of my sunglasses.

When in Rome, don't just do like any ordinary Roman. Do your best to be observant, be polite, smile, and try to speak the language. And always pack your sunglasses!

Friday, January 15, 2010

Land on the Runway, Arrive like a Model

Several months ago we shared our tips and tricks for traveling with Jet Set Style. Whether you're traveling for work or play, looking and feeling your best are invaluable when on the road. The week before you head out, try a few of these steps:

-- Skin. Whenever you travel, especially leisurely, you're bound to take a cornucopia of photographs - and you want to look your best. Put your best face forward and prep your skin a week before you leave. In the winter months particularly, your skin tends to be more on the dry side than normal. After exfoliating and cleansing like normal, I use Origins Drink Up Mask. In just ten minutes, your skin is instantly more radiant and hydrated, and feels amazing. I actually use this mask 6 days prior to departure, and then again 2 days before departure to insure optimal skin condition. To make sure you avoid problem skin, I use their Clear Improvement mask as well - it's active charcoal and heroic ingredients purify and detoxify the skin from the inside out. I'll use Clear Improvement 7 days prior to departure, and then again 3 days out as well. For random blemishes, I cover and treat them wit Murad's Acne Treatment Concealer - it clears and prevents blemishes and skin breakouts flawlessly.

-- Moisturize and Bronze. No one wants to look like a ghost. Unless you live in the tropics or are naturally tan - invest in a good sunless tanner for face and body. I'll usually start this process about two weeks before departure (in case you have any freak tanning accidents - you can recover from any streaking or orange effects in about this time frame). I've had great luck with Dove's Energy Glow, but to be honest, I don't know if it's still available. It's very lightweight, subtle, and builds over time. A beauty expert friend of mine also highly recommends Fusion's products as well.

-- Stay Regular and Healthy. I don't want to be gross - but I must address it. When you travel, especially to foreign countries, you're likely to not be on your same eating schedule. You might try new foods, new tastes, and not eat as balanced as you would at home. So prep your stomach before you go with Good Belly. Their probiotic juice drinks and products improve your digestive health and immunity! I can't say enough good things about their products. They work and taste good, too! What more could you ask?

-- Manicure/Pedicure. I know it's hard to spend money on a "pampering" event like a mani/pedi before you go on vacation - but consider this preventative maintenance. Shorter toe nails, with a strong coat of polish, will hold up so much better than unkept toes - and make for easier mobility. If you're going to be porting your own luggage and such - you'll also appreciate shorter finger nails as well. Plus, they'll be so much prettier in all of your photographs!

-- Haircut. Right before a big vacation is generally not the time to experiment with new hair styles. Get your hair trimmed a week or so before you leave - that way you avoid the "just cut" look, and have refreshed the look and style you love.

Traveling is an adventure. With these quick tips, you're sure to stay en vogue even on the road.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Leona Lewis - Style Savvy

They say a picture is worth a thousand words. I'm saying a series of pictures that show impeccable style are worth much more than that. You be the judge.

And take a look at what Leona does best.

Confidence, humility, and talent make for great accessories!

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Help Haiti Now

Help Haiti now. The island nation is in desperate need for our assistance. Caring for others, helping as best we can, and reaching out do good has never been more en vogue.
Here's how you can help:

Help Now.

Aide Immédiatement.

Aiuto Immediatamente.


즉각 도움.

Ajuda Imediatamente.

Ayuda Ahora.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Best Music, Movie 2010

Avatar is a must see movie, and Leona Lewis' smash hit touches all of the themes perfectly. "Beautiful" describes it all.

"I see you"

Friday, January 8, 2010

Sailing into Spring

I'm not usually a fan of wearing multiple pieces from the same brand; not that I'm a fan of "fashion potpourri" as I call it - where everything is so mix matched that nothing seems to work. However, Martin + Osa has caught my attention again with these two great new pieces. I've always loved the casual air, the athleticism, and the quiet refinement of a great rugby shirt. The denim is slim and trim, with the perfect mix of classic styling with modern flair. Not too trendy. Not boring. Not pretentious.

You can dress these two items up with a great navy blazer and caramel or cognac coloured leather belt and shoes. Or you can keep it casual and cool with a brightly coloured canvas or woven belt (think coral, bright yellow, or aqua), and your favourite running shoes or boat shoes.

Striped Rugby Shirt
Style: 3151/4828

Crafted with a nod to its sport heritage, our rugby polo is designed to be your staple, on + off the field.

• Vintage fit with twill straight collar
• Trapunto-stitched back yoke with lining
• Cross-stitched elbow patches
• Double-layer rib cuffs
• Uneven hem with side slits hits at hip

• 100% cotton jersey
• Midweight, soft feel
• Herringbone tape in placket + on slits
• Chambray lining inside collar
• Machine wash

Super Slim Fit Jean
Murky Depths Wash
Style: 3456/1114

Straight + sure. Our narrowest fit definitely boasts the most attitude, a long + lean look that is versatile + wearable.

• Sits low on waist
• Slim through hip + thigh
• 15 1/4" slim leg opening
• Button fly
• Five-pocket style

• 100% cotton, 11.8 oz.
• Tacking, grinding at pockets + cuffs
• 3-D resin whiskering, sanding
• Logo button, rivets, embroidery, patch
• Machine wash
Now, for those of you who aren't quite sure what "whiskering" or "sanding" are in terms of denim, M+O explain it brilliantly here:
WHISKERING refers to the lines that naturally develop on denim when worn over + over before washing. They are creases that form behind the knees, to the sides of the zipper and at the top of the thigh. We apply whiskering by hand to lend a well-worn look to a new pair of jeans.

SANDING is the action of scraping away the top layer of dye from the jean. We do it by hand with fine grain sandpaper for the most precise results.
Remember, no matter what you're wearing or where you're going - the best accessories are confidence, class, and character. Smile. Say "thank you". Hold the door for others. When you feel better, you look better.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Unlock the Fashion

  • Haute Couture, or High Fashion, has always had a bit of mystery, exclusivity, and seduction. From Alexander McQueen's models wearing masks on the runway, to the sensual curves of Valentino's gowns, down to the smallest details of Dior, it really is a combination of many elements all done perfectly that create this high fashion.
  • Christian Dior was the master of Haute Couture, creating the first "new look" in 1947. Since then, the fashion house has continued his tradition of creating the most sought after pieces. In 2006, the luxury fashion house launched Gaucho, a collection inspired by the Gauchos of Argentina. With a distinctly western cowboy feel, the collection featured hand washed leathers, rubbed with black wax for a vintage look and feel, and featured coins with the effigy of Dior, his favourite bow and flowers, and of course, an old style key - said to open the lock to the house of Dior.
  • And John Galliano's New Lock bag is no exception. A fabulous new collection with an innovative locking clasp, the bags feature the signature Cannage quilting - a Louis XIV pattern that was found on the gold gilded chairs in the main salon of Dior's house on Avenue Montagne in the St. Germain district of Paris. I've seen several different bags from this range, including a black lambskin with ruffled trim and chain link strap, an incredible red patent lambskin version, and of course the luxe hand painted python as well.
  • As if launching a new bag wasn't enough, the House of Dior again has raised the bar, creating a series of short (and by short - I mean like, 10 seconds maximum) films directed by Peter Lindberg and Darius Khondji and feature the stunning Nora Arnezeder. Of course, the real star is the New Lock. If you look closely, you'll see all the elements of the House of Dior as well. Those iconic gray chairs. The signature crown molding. The gold Dior Couture sign. Remember to unlock the secret of Haute Couture, because it really is all in the details.

Monday, January 4, 2010

Right on Target

Quality fashion and stellar style don't always have to cost a bundle of cash. Knowing the key colours and inspirations of the season can definitely prepare you for the perfect low-cost wardrobe. After the cold winter, bright colours are the perfect way to add some pizazz and excitement to your ensemble. I'm loving loden (that awesome Army green,), bright yellows, and hot pinks.

It's said that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. I'm not talking about fake purses and knockoffs either. Diane Von Furstenberg crafted the wrap style dress that's flattering for nearly all body types. On a recent trip to SuperTarget, I saw several really cute wrap dresses. I especially love this zebra print wrap dress - and it's less than US$20! I'd pair it with bright coloured heels, a cardigan - and you're instantly dressed to impress!

I also love this Mossimo crossover v-neck dress as well. Super cute, easy to accessorize, especially with bright, chunky jewelry. I'd pair it with a fun beaded necklace and a giant cocktail ring for that perfect pop of colour and excitement. And less than US$40 - you can't go wrong!

Merona Collection's sleeveless tie neck dress is amazing. Flirty, fun, feminine - what else could you ask for from a dress?! I love the "vine" green colour - everything about this says "spring is here!"

Find what you love and rock it. Confidence is the best accessory.