I'm taking this weekend off blogging, but will be back with plenty of material this next week.


Fashion Forecast Spring 2011: Turquoise

While looking through the Spring 2011 runway shows turquoise seemed to have made its way in one form or another into everyone's lines.  The colour ranged from a light turquoise used by Phillip Lim to a more vibrant incarnation which appeared on Burberry Prorsum's runway.  Paler versions also were incorporated into Chanel and Bottega Veneta's shows.  Whether it dominated the look or was used for accessories, turquoise had a definite presence in the Spring shows.  If you're too timid to try the turquoise leopard print shown by Blumarine, I suggest following Burberry Prorsum's lead and trying out some subtler accessories.  All photos from http://www.style.com/fashionshows/collections/S2011RTW/

Top Left to Bottom Right: Burberry Prorsum, Blumarine, Bottega Veneta, Chanel, 3.1 Phillip Lim, Burberry Prorsum


Favourite Things Additions

Just some additions, for the other seventeen check out the Favourite Things page.

18.  Rainy Mood.  Question: ever thought to yourself "What I'm doing/not doing is great, but wouldn't it be better if it sounded like it was raining outside?"  Well, my old roommate did, and that's how she found Rainy Mood.  I think it started out as one of those things that's supposed to help you fall asleep at night, but honestly I like to play it with jazz and big band music because for some reason it makes life seem better.  If you're a freak like me, take a look.

19.  Cracked.  Cracked is a great website for those of us who love random movie trivia.  They inject all of their work with a sense of humour so longer articles keep you interested.  A good one for all the film buffs out there.

20.  Internet Movie Database.  Ever been watching a movie and said to yourself "Where do I remember that guy from???"  Well, IMDB is here to solve all your problems.  You can search actors, films, directors, etc and see filmographies, upcoming projects and related articles as well as bio information, photos and trailers.  Very useful for solving film-related arguments.

21.  Vogue's website.  I won't pretend I bother reading much, but I do find it indispensable in that they dependably provide images of all clothing from all the runway shows, broken down according to season and couture, ready-to-wear, etc.

Favourite Things

I just finished updating the Favourite Things page, so take a look if you dare.  At the moment it's just reviews and links to other websites (if you're already hating this one), but I'm going to be adding other things like product reviews and whatever else comes to mind.  Enjoy.

Technical Difficulties

Alright, so I think I've started to figure things out a little.  For now, you'll be able to find all my posts on the home page, but if you want to read exclusively on one of the other topics I am re-posting all of them on the appropriate tabs.  Hopefully this is helpful and I don't get sick of it too soon.

Karl Lagerfeld: or, The Root of All Evil

For those of you who are unfamiliar with good ol' Karl, he secured fame and fortune as the designer for Chanel's fashion house, he has a self-titled line of his own, and he's a noted photographer (and probably other stuff I don't know about).  If that doesn't jog your memory, you might remember him as that creepy guy with the plastic face and white ponytail who wears the same damn shirt, vest, and sunglasses every day... as a member of the fashion industry I feel that qualifies as ironic.

Anyway, I take particular issue with Karl Lagerfeld for several reasons, and because I'm petty I hope I can convince you to hate him as much as I do.  My reasons aren't many, but I'd say they're fairly compelling:

1. He's like the worst kind of shallow frat boy.  Some of you may know about the recent push in fashion to ensure that models are of a more healthy body weight, and many designers (Prada, for example) are now including fuller-figured models on their runways and establishing minimum weight requirements.  This fairly revolutionary change was not limited to runways, either, but many magazines ran editorials with plus-size models and incorporated more realistically sized women in their content.  Then along comes Karl.  When the whole fashion world seemed to be buzzing about this extremely positive change, he decided to announce that fat girls just don't model his clothes right, and he communicated that he had no intention of instituting the above-mentioned changes.  You can just imagine him at a kegger, party in full swing, red cup in hand and Kanye shades firmly on, sporting the "No Fat Chicks" t-shirt.  Karl Lagerfeld tends to remind me in this sense of one of those awkward old people.  You know, the relic of a former era, who every once in a while will say some appalling racial slur or sexist remark that has everyone loudly shushing him and giving apologetic looks to anyone unfortunate enough to have heard grandpa's latest insult.  Don't get me wrong, I don't have anything against old people, but Karl Lagerfeld has retained those attitudes that just should have stayed in the past.

Now you may be saying, "Okay, so Karl Lagerfeld is kind of an ass and can't conceive of women as anything besides mannequins.  But there are lots of those people out there, why all the hatred?"  Well, that brings me to my second point...

2.  Karl Lagerfeld's designs for Chanel are total shit.  Chanel has a reputation for being classy; just the name evokes images of pearls and classic suits.  Karl Lagerfeld is single-handedly running this great fashion house straight into the firey pits of hell.  Season after season I excitedly went to Vogue's website, style.com, to see the latest shows, Chanel included.  Naive as I was, I initially hoped that the monstrosity I saw was just a bad year and things would look better next season.  Not so.  After this pattern repeated itself for a while I lost all hope, but seemed to figure out his design strategy.

I figure what Karl Lagerfeld does is he goes to a trailer park somewhere in the United States, and on his stroll through he takes careful notes on what all the trailer trash is wearing.  Then he says to himself, "I'm going to bring that back in style."  This would explain why this last fall all his models looked like the abominable snowman.  I had foolishly thought that those hideous yeti boots were gone from fashion forever, but thanks to Karl I get to cringe every now and again when I see a pair yeti-ing their way down the street.  Karl seems to abandon all notions of form and figure-flattering (which makes you wonder why he thought healthier-sized models would have made a difference) in the interest of throwing whatever's on hand on the model and saying "Yes, so avant-garde!"  To me he is the definition of the designer whose only interest is pushing boundaries and being sensational, not designing nice clothes.  He's a lot like Zoolander's Mugatu, but without the advantage of being hilarious.  I suppose in all fairness I should admit that I haven't bothered looking at his self-titled line, as usually by the time I've looked at Chanel all I want to do is wash my eyes with bleach.

Awful.  Finally, the last reason why Karl Lagerfeld is the devil's agent:

3.  Karl Lagerfeld's smile makes children cry.  Luckily, he doesn't often smile for just this reason.  But the odd time when he seems to forget his mouthful of nightmare-inducers, he'll flash us his not-so-pearly whites (more like toxic waste yellow).

Tron: Legacy

Seeing as in my infinite laziness I have yet to peruse the Spring Runway shows (so behind, I know), I'll kick things off with a film review.  Also thanks to that same laziness, it's going to be the last film I bothered to watch, Tron: Legacy.

When I first saw the trailer for Tron: Legacy (hereafter Tron) I had something of geek-out.  I mean you can't help but be excited for a film scored entirely by Daft Punk, whose completely obscure Interstella 5555 I have owned and loved for years.  For those of you who are too lazy to look it up, Interstella 5555 was an animated musical film Daft Punk made to accompany their album Discovery.  Their first four singles - One More Time, Aerodynamic, Digital Love, and Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger - were released with the corresponding sections of the film.  You might remember it as those music videos with the blue anime people.  Daft Punk have dependably released fantastic music over the years, and I was excited to see what they would do with Tron.

Besides the soundtrack's potential, the actors who had signed-on for the film each had promise.  Jeff Bridges won an Academy Award shortly after the trailer was released, and Olivia Wilde has been an installment on the popular House for at least a couple of years now.  The star, Garrett Hedlund, you might recognize from Troy (he played Patroclus), or, less likely, you might remember him from Georgia Rule (TERRIBLE MOVIE).  He also is in the recently released Country Strong with that entitled crack-job Gwyneth Paltrow (who names one child after fruit and another after a prophet? Really?  Really??).  Other cast members included Cillian Murphy (Inception, Batman Begins, and many many others) and Michael Sheen (The Twilight Saga: New Moon, The Queen).  Not exactly small potatoes.

On top of all this, the trailers showcased a mesmerizing visual landscape that incorporated the best CGI available and showings in 3D.

So, how did it turn out?  Well, I'll have to admit I built up some big expectations, and so the film came as a bit of a disappointment.  Its strengths were in the soundtrack and the visuals.  Daft Punk came through spectacularly with a soundtrack which perfectly balanced their signature electronic style with the film's need for emotive music to support dialogue and plot developments.  The CD jacket explains they studied soundtrack composers and their music intensely to prepare for composing Tron's score, and that comes through in Tron: Legacy's soundtrack.

Similarly, the visuals were quite the work of art.  The only CGI I found distracting was the young version of Jeff Bridges, and only during close-ups.  The rest of the imagery blended smoothly.  Interestingly, some filming was apparently done in Vancouver, as there is an extremely recognizable shot of the Lions Gate Bridge at the end of the film - locals will enjoy the view of West and North Van, although it certainly does shatter the illusion somewhat.  The only real complaint I have about the visuals is that it at times feels as though scenes have been added simply because someone said "Hey, you know what would look really cool?".  Unlike Avatar, not all of Tron was filmed in 3D - only some sequences.  However, I didn't find the switching back and forth detracted from the film - rather I can appreciate the director's insights that certain scenes simply are better when kept 2D.  As an added bonus the audience didn't even need to put their 3D glasses on and off - they got to stay on the whole time.

As for the weaknesses...  Well, the dialogue, quite honestly, was seriously lacking.  It felt formulaic and forced, which no talent (or lack thereof) on the part of the actors could really help.  Besides that, the plot seemed to have significant holes in it, even though I took the extra effort to watch the original Tron before seeing Tron: Legacy.  I'll add that the original Tron is quite entertaining, although more because the state-of-the-art graphics in the original are reminiscent of that first ping-pong video game from the early 80s.  I found Jeff Bridges' character's manner of speaking a little bizarre, although in the bigger picture, appropriate.  I'll say no more in the interest of not ruining the movie.

Overall, Tron: Legacy was worth seeing.  Tron: Legacy for the most part retained the stand-out idea that Tron presented back in the 80s: the concept of the internet as "a digital frontier".  The Tron films dedicate themselves to the view of the internet as a mysterious thing with infinite possibilities, capable of solving all the world's problems and doing just about anything, but also retaining a vague threat, similar to that of AI.  The stories are filled with a sense of wonder that more recent generations (including my own) don't have, since we've grown up and therefore taken for granted the internet and its (limited) capabilities.

If you're going to go see Tron, prepare yourself for a mildly nostalgic, audio-and-visually focused film that's a little lacking in the backbone department.  I'll add that watching Garrett Hedlund strut around in a black spandex bodysuit for most of the movie made it especially worth seeing.

Not complaining.

A New World

Yes, I know what you're thinking: "Did she just reference the title of that Colin Farrell Pocahontas movie?"  And the answer is yes, yes I did.  It seemed appropriate seeing as starting this blog is inspiring the feelings one might expect upon discovering a whole new world - excitement, certainly, but also some degree of trepidation.  The idea of starting a blog had been crystallizing in my mind for several months now, but it took until today when I realized that EVERYONE is blogging for me to finally cave in to what has been called a supremely self-indulgent practice.  Besides being a useful outlet, I suppose I'm hoping this can be a useful addition to my resume.

Anyway, I suppose the point is that the material I intend on including is.... uh... diverse.  Everything from Runway reviews to posts of my latest manicure to a tirade on how ridiculous some current (and not-so-current) events are.  I'll warn any readers now that I have no intention of pretending to be politically correct, so if a particular rant rubs you the wrong way, go get yourself a tissue and cry it out, because I sure don't give a damn.

At the top of the page you will notice tabs intended to help you zero-in on whatever it is you'd most like to read about.  Over the next few weeks/months (entirely dependent on my attention span and availability) I'll try to get a start on each of the pages to build up a half-decent site.  You also may be wondering about the title which, in case you haven't already googled it, is Latin for "judge in the matters of taste".  I'll have you know I searched long and hard (sort of) for that title, as all the other clever things I could think of were already taken (damn you, fashionphile!).

Bear with me, if you can.