Wednesday, 30 May 2012

a walk on the sunny side

Last week I took a walk on the sunny side of Brazilian
everyday fashion through the stunning summer outfits
designed by NIca Kessler, a young yet experienced
Brazilian designer who came to show the most confident
and tasteful spring/summer 2013 collection on 
the Rio fashion runways.

Nica studied at London's Saint Martins, at the Escuela
Superior de Diseño Moda Felicidad Duce in Barcelona
and took an Industrial Design course at PUC in Rio
learning how to control the whole production process,
that's why her detail-focused, essentially feminine
collection has been carried out successfully.

Cheerful and sophisticated, the collection shows simple
fluid shapes and cutouts with breathtaking still life 
floral prints, short and mid-length dresses in lace,
silk and gauze with polka dots, embroideries and
details inspired by 'Vista Alegre' fine china (a
traditional Portuguese porcelain) in a fresh 
and extremely charming assemblage.

detail pictures ©  by Marcelo Soubhia/Agência Fotosite via
catwalk pictures © by Zé Takahashi/Agência Fotosite via
As the designer's website reads, Nica's woman is
”...funky, young (in character), sensual, romantic and
elegant but without losing the urban climate of the
woman who works, who is sophisticated while having 

 personality.” Definitely Nica Kessler's idea of fashion
sings out loud with its own voice, therefore giving
voice to those who wear it. Bravissima!

the designer wearing her floral shirt, photo © by Marcelo Soubhia/Agência Fotosite

Tuesday, 29 May 2012

cheerleading in Rio

Strongly influenced both by college cheerleaders and
Japanese anime, Brazilian RTW brand 'Oh Boy!' came
to show the summer 2013 RTW collection in Rio de
Janeiro last week presenting a colorful, sassy array
of clothes for bubbly young women.

Creative consulting directors Thais Losso and Mark Kurtz
brought 'Oh Boy!' to its line-up debut at Rio fashion week
coordinating the mass of work done by the label's style
team through an impressive display of short dresses
in nylon and leather full of transparencies and floral prints
in which Japanese pictorial details including cherries, doll
faces and panda origami are turned into gripping
geometric patterns. Cheers and appaluse to all of them!

catwalk images © by Agência Fotosite via
detail images © by Marcelo Soubhia/Ag. Fotosite via

Sunday, 27 May 2012

painting with fire

photo © by EPA
Let's start the week after Whitsunday playing with
fire with some inspirational shots from the Ukraine's
capital city of Kiev where the 6th Kiev Fire Fest  
(KFF for fire people) came to an end today.

photo © Afp

photo © by EPA
The four-day event came to gather a huge crew of
swashbuckling fire dancers, jugglers, theatrical and
circus performers together with fire artists and
fireworks experts from Ukraine and several other
countries including Ireland, Bulgaria, Germany,
Belarus, France and Lithuania in a stunning
exchange between East and West Europe.

photo © by EPA
photo © by Gleb Garanich/Reuters
Performers had once again the chance to show
themselves in solo stagings as well as to learn from
the best artists in the genre taking part in residential
workshops fully engrossed in the event's unique vibe.
KFF's popularity is constantly growing providing
once-a-year gripping images of burning poetry in
motion in which performers paint literally like blazes
with fire in the forest on the outskirts of Kiev
setting the world on fire.

upper: photo © by EPA  lower: photo © by Gleb Garanich/Reuters

Friday, 25 May 2012

Kikas' defensive dress code

Ragne Kikas is the gifted Estonian designer based in
Hamburg, Germany, who's making a name for herself
after she won hands down the Première Vision Prize
at latest Hyères International Festival of Fashion and 
Photography with gripping knitted pieces from her
graduation collection she aptly called ”Dress Code
Defensive” being inspired by 16th century armors.

For two consecutive years Première Vision partnered
with Hyères Festival to strenghten the link between
fashion professionals while supporting young design
talents in forging direct contacts with exhibiting
manufacturers. That's the reason why Ragne's
knitwear collection will be showcased to North
America's professionals at the upcoming 
Première Vision Preview in New York.

Ragne graduated from Hamburg's University of Applied
Sciences with an MA degree in fashion design, of course
focused on knitwear, developing her sculptured pieces.
The collection which was selected among ten proficient
finalists, is set to an almost black palette showing pleated
and patterned knits that skillfully interpret the stiff, 
angular shapes of the old coats of mail.
A modern twist on an old theme.

> all images © Etienne Tordoir/Catwalkpictures <

Tuesday, 22 May 2012

Thai revelation

I was thrilled to stumble upon the work of a real talent
who was formerly known as Titipon Chitsantisook
(a notable Hyères contestant and proud winner of Tokyo's 
Onward New Designer Fashion Grand Prix in 2008) 
before switching to Wisharawish Akarasantisook
(his uroboros trademark probably suggesting the
 integration and assimilation of the opposite).

Born in Thailand, Titipon moved to Paris studying at
the Marangoni Institute and at IFM, the Institut
Français de la Mode, soon developing a distinctive
fresh approach to urban fashion through black
silhouettes enriched by complex pleats and trims.
He is among the finalists of the 4th edition of El Botón,
the Mango Fashion Awards event whose provocative
call to arms in shaping the future of fashion this time
smartly reads ”create your own revolution”.

Wisharawish's authoritative knowledge in fashion
contests lately made him marshal Bangkok's Contemporary
Fashion Contest, a project organized by the local Office 
of Contemporary Art and Culture showing interesting 
young talents combining traditional Thai materials 
such as silk with the newest clothing styles.

The experienced Thai designer is also enthusiastically active 
on Webstagram, the Instagram Web Viewer through which
he shares inspirational and daily life pics as well as
sneak-peeks of his gripping works.

> all images © Wisharawish Akarasantisook, 2012 <

Monday, 21 May 2012

across the universe

Swedish star Noomi Rapace, the original Lisbeth Salander
in 'The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo', goes supernova wearing
pieces by Theysken's Theory on the space-themed cover
of much revered Dazed & confused June issue through
the images of lionized London-based Norwegian
photographer Sølve Sundsbø, styled by Dazed's
Fashion Editor Katie Shillingford.

Noomi will star as Elizabeth Shaw in the upcoming Ridley
Scott's sci-fi flick 'Prometheus' (she's also working in Berlin
with Brian De Palma though) and Dazed arrives on the dot
with its 'Intergalactic' editorial showing the award-winning
actress as member of a spaceship crew seeking out the
origins of human race across the universe.

Mimicking the movie poster, the cover combines different
images in the eclectic yet identifiable Sundsbø's style
whose photos once again speak for themselves being
fresh and powerful, redolent of distant galaxies 
and adventure.

> all images © by Sølve Sundsbø for Dazed June <

Saturday, 19 May 2012

a sunshine state of mind

As you may remember, Monki is the outstanding chain store
and clothing brand founded by a bunch of dream-weavers
from Stockholm, Sweden, that came to develop a surreal
world of its own, establishing ”both a way of doing life and
doing fashion” through a singular brand image, 
sustainable practices and co-operation with others.

”As part of the textile and fashion industry...” the company's
social responsibility statement reads ”...we strive for a broad
environmental and ethical approach to business (...) our
requirements regarding the use of chemicals go further than
statutory codes and gradually we're introducing materials
and processes that are more environmentally friendly”.

Monki's stores are scattered throughout the Scandinavian
peninsula as well as in UK, Germany, Hong Kong and The
Netherlands and they can be described as storytelling
'walk-in closets', each one of them being actually a highly
detailed conceptual world with peculiar interiors and
accessories, made to surprise and amuse, part of a
gripping retail vision that lately has been bought 
by fellow Swedish fashion giant H&M.

Monki's stores otherworldly design is a hodgepodge of
shapes, textures and colors created by visionary studio
'Electric Dreams' while the brand's lookbooks are
usually curated by gifted teams of visual artists such as
the latest one called Colour, a sunshine state of mind”
showing easy urban outfits in solid colors under a direct,
intense light that emphasizes the brand's signature
free spirited looks for fashion-conscious young women
through the images taken by Nielsen Omvik
styled by Oscar Lange for Link Details.
”In the Monki World, everything is possible”,
colorful and pretty well-done.

all images © by Nielsen Omvik/Skarp, style by Oscar Lange/Link Details

Wednesday, 16 May 2012

fly me to the moon

Fly me to the moon
Let me play among the stars
Let me see what spring is like
On Jupiter and Mars...

Bart Howard, ”In Other Words”, 1954

”My design is for a harmonious world full of pure
delight, dream and romance and for people who
are attractive and warm-hearted” declares young
Chinese fashion designer Fangwen Xu introducing
her graduate collection called ”Fly me to the moon”.

With a Fashion BA (Hons) degree in fashion design
technology from London's College of Fashion, Fangwen
explored shapes and details in contrasting materials
through delicate sci-fi inspired, ethereal looks.
”Considering my design, I would not use fashion,
elegance, minimalism or other specific words to
describe my style. I have used my pure imagination

to present an art and a state of being”.  

”It presents the vulnerability, silence and wonder of
life, a human form that leaves the restriction of reality
away to reach an unlimited space. It seems everyone
has in his/her mind a subtle piece of garment indicating
the secret dwelling of his/her soul...”
the young designer
wrote, ”the garment seems to reveal life experience and
secret. It uncovers an infinite and extraordinary vision
epically out of the restrained physical form.”

> image via Elle China <
 I adore the way she folds the fabrics (they're neither
a classical plissé nor an origami), the juxtaposing of
matte and translucent materials but mostly the 
contrast between globe-shaped and tight forms.
Her silhouettes show signs of an organic essence that 
uniquely evokes a butterfly taking flight the moment
it comes out of the chrysalis giving prominence to the
young talent's idealized view of womenswear.

> all images © by Boz W (I'M studio, London) <

Tuesday, 15 May 2012

ropemasks & face pots

Time has come to drop the mask of wretchedness
that came to bedevil my last couple of months through
the cheerful, stunning masks made of stitched ropes
by Bertjan Pot, the gifted Dutch product designer who's
known for his deep affection toward textile materials.

A graduate from Eindhoven's Design Academy in 1998,
Pot is internationally recognized for his 'Random' and
'Carbon' furniture series that are prominently featured
in top museums' collections as well as for his 
experimental projects.

”I design products. Often they are interior
products. The way interior products relate to their
users appeals to me. Interior products are not distant
and hardcore industrial like power tools, cars and
buildings, but also not as personal and hip as fashion.
Furniture and lighting design really fits the method
I work with. Working on my designs I start small, playing 
with and focusing on a material or a technique...”
he wrote introducing himself on his website.

Constantly experimenting and playing as he aptly
pointed out, Bertjan planned to make a flat carpet by
stitching a rope together and when the prototype got
curvy he suddenly came across a cogent fascination
with masks and started creating a seemingly endless
parade of facepots and characters or ”textile tricks &
flicks” as he calls them, in a sort of guerrilla knitting
project that's still under way.

”My technical interest and creative fantasies are a way 
to push the boundaries of industrial production...” 
Pot declares about his unique approach to design 
which is more right-brained than technical.
He certainly knows the ropes of mask making.

> all images © by Studio Bertjan Pot <