Thursday, November 26, 2009

Rewind & Recent Buy: Nina Ricci Fall/Winter 2007

Belgian-born Olivier Theyskens joined as creative director for Nina Ricci in 2006, and his collections won ardent praise by fashion critics for his ability to channel the house’s airy romance through chiffon layers and jeweled accents, consistently creating glamour with a Parisienne-punk edge. But to everyone's disappointment (mine included), he was let go after the fall 2009 show. During his short 3 years at Nina Ricci, my favourite collection of Olivier's for this fashion house was without doubt, his incredible debut collection for Nina Ricci: the Fall/Winter 2007 collection. This magical collection reminds me of 'The Chronicles of Narnia' perhaps with a touch of 'Swan Lake'...

For this collection, Olivier Theyskens said he wanted "to introduce a new wave of cool—something urban and gray-ish, but nonchalant, fragile, and superlight". He surely succeeded in doing so with teardrop-shaped down-filled blousons, twisted sweater dresses, and diagonally zipped biker jackets that fell open in soft, petal-like folds, his mood was beautifully ethereal — with carefully individually placed downy feathers floating from the models' hair creating a breathtaking effect. Having always loved the L'air du Temps bottle of perfume (and the actual perfume as well), I simply adored the spiraling cuts reminiscent of the crystal flacons of the classic perfume bottle, reflected on the floor-length gowns.

Sadly, I have no red-carpet occasions to wear such dresses (nor the money tree to supply funds to obtain one either). But I am so excited with my recent purchase: the opening silk teardrop-shaped twisted down-filled blouson jacket...I absolutely love it...and am looking forward to using it when I go to Japan in December (tips/recommendations/suggestions still more than welcome)...

Can't you just picture Tilda Swinton as the White Witch from 'The Chronicles of Narnia' in the stunning finale dress, or in that snuggly fur jacket?

Loved the ethereal snow fairies on the catwalk...

Monday, November 23, 2009

Japan - Land of the Rising Sun - travel tips more than welcome!

I am so so so excited that in 3 weeks time I leave for Japan - Land of the Rising Sun.

pic borrowed from

As this is my first time there, I welcome any tips, recommendations and anecdotes of experiences you may have had in Japan...

Briefly, and roughly I plan to stay:
  • 7 nights in Tokyo (I will have to explore it slowly, as I will get tired easily - possible day trips if I feel I need to see something other than concrete jungle)
  • 1-2 nights in Hakone - onsens (natural hot spring baths) with views of Mt Fuji & Lake Ashi
  • 7-8 nights in Kyoto (with possible day trips to nearby cities)
In Tokyo, I will be staying in Shinjuku, and plan to explore:


In particular, the Prada store (for its incredible architecture), Dries Van Noten (so different from the Paris store!), and of course, Japanese designers/labels such as Comme des Garcons, Yohji Yamamoto & Issey Miyake

Shibuya, Roppongi Hills, Shinjuku & Harajuku
  • To explore the famous Shibuya crossing, the incredible neon lights, shops of all these areas...
  • Check out the youngsters at Harajuku (as well as the markets on Sunday).
  • Visit the Meiji shrine & Mori Tower
  • See if I can find any consignment stores with Chanel reissues (any recommendations?)

Ginza & Tsukiji Markets

I plan to explore the famous Ginza strip with its limitless stores, and will pop into Laduree & Pierre Herme as well. I also plan to go to the Tsukiji (Fish) markets, for the freshest fish sashimi/sushi ever...Ginza should be especially beautiful at night with all the christmas lights & ornaments...

Asakusa & the Imperial Palace


Time to relax after one week's sightseeing in Tokyo, enjoy the beautiful views, onsens (sadly I will not be able to partake of this activity, but hubby, lil' sister & mom will), a boat trip along the lake...and hopefully...a beautiful kaiseki-style meal...

Then on to Kyoto - where my parents have been staying for the last few months...

Exploring this traditional city of Japan, the many temples, castle, shrines and gardens...Hopefully see a geisha or maiko (geisha in training). Possible day trips to Nara, Kobe (yum...kobe beef), Osaka...

Looking forward to sampling all sorts of Japanese food (bento boxes, ramen noodles, okonomiyaki, sushi, sashimi, MOS burger...

Hope to buy:
  • Vintage kimonos (any recommendations on where to find these?) - perhaps even a furisode, if I am lucky (Japanese wedding kimono)
  • Beautiful Japanese crockery/china
  • Carved and painted Japanese kokeshi wooden dolls
  • Maybe a tatami mat
  • Any gorgeous or cute Japanese thing I come across that I must have...

So, any tips/recommendations/stories/experiences?

Thanks in advance!

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Recent Buys: Lanvin & Chloe - Long sought after staples

For several years now I have been on the search for my 'perfect' pair of knee high flat boots, every Winter lamenting I lacked this 'staple' item in my wardrobe...and finally, I have found them! I had spotted these Chloe buckle boots a while back on net-a-porter, and as always, it was sold out in my size, I was so happy to find them again...

I see that I will be wearing mostly flat shoes in the coming months, and especially for my trip to Japan, I needed some good flat shoes, including the Chloe boots, and also a nice pair of Lanvin flats, which I have also had on my 'wishlist' for quite some time...after a little rigmarole (bought 3 pairs, one order cancelled - silly shopzoeonline, one order returned to NAP), I finally found my Lanvin flats...

(pic from Barneys, although I purchased mine from - excellent service!)

I am so happy with my recent purchases as they have been something I have been after for so long...what about you, any staple items on your wishlist?

Monday, November 16, 2009

Sweets for my feet -Part 2: Sandals (high heels)

Following on from my previous post, 'Sweets for my feet - Part 1: Pumps", I was glad I got to continue my 'sweets' and 'shoes' theme...especially because I was giddy when I found out that French luxury pastries brand Ladurée has partnered with designers (Marni & Christian Louboutin) to make fabulous gift boxes for its macarons. Italian luxury brand Marni created a gold colored macroon box with polka dots and a golden flower for Ladurée. My sister has already been lucky enough to be gifted a box of Christian Louboutin macarons for her birthday...I hear the Marni box will be released early December, and as I have booked my tickets to go to Japan mid-December (Woo hoo! Am so excited, as I have never been to Japan), I am determined to make my way to Ladurée (as well as Pierre Hermé) to get me some of my very own in Tokyo...

Marni patent sandals

My bridesmaid shoes by Top End (they matched my sisters' blush silk satin wedding shoes perfectly), and Chloe gold bow sandals.

Dries Van Noten

From top: Christian Dior Extreme Python Sandals, Gucci by Tom Ford peep-toe clear slingback heels & Prada Ming colourful wedges (I think these were my first pair of 'designer shoes').

Stella McCartney sandals - I purchased the ivory silk satin & swarovski heels before I even got engaged, and saved them as wedding shoes, but as I changed my mind in the last minute regarding my dress, they did not suit my Akira wedding dress, so I only got to wear them to the 'rehearsal dinner'.

It is a shame that sandals do not photograph as well as pumps...