Jesseca at State + Wacker

On a very stormy, gray day here in Chicago, Jesseca brightens up our dreary streets. The combination of a taupe purse with a rich blue coat makes this outfit adorable and contemporary. The coat is an amazing vintage Rothschild coat with velvet detailing, from (the now closed) Yellow Jacket vintage store.

Thelermont Hupton: Blown Ups

"Thelermont Hupton is a design partnership between David Hupton and Yve Thelermont. Their work is rooted in the physical and emotional experiences of daily life. Through verbal sketches and exchanges products emerge and are resolved simply through an investigation into form, materials, and arrangement. Having studied together since 2000 at the London Metropolitan University, they launched the company at Designers Block London in 2003. With backgrounds in Fine Art and furniture making their collections include furniture, interior accessories, lighting and tableware."

Images from DVICE.


Bora Aksu: A/W 2009


This is a selection of looks from Bora Aksu's beautiful collection presented at London Fashion Week. He graduated from Central Saint Martens with an MA in 2002. He has such a variety of experience and has done many interesting collaborations: Cathy Marston Project (a London contemporary dance company), Converse, Artisan Armour group (who produced props and costumes for films such as Troy, Alexander and King Arthur), and he has also "signed a contract with People Tree-Fair trade organization to design exclusive capsule collections to raise awareness on fair trade work shops."


Balenciaga: Spring 2009

For Balenciaga's Spring 2009 collection Nicolas Ghesquière had a simple foundation: to explore materiality, the play between matte vs. shiny surfaces and how they react to light. I think this collection is incredible in so many ways. At times it is very subdued and futuristic, but quickly moves to being dreamy, fantastic and, for lack of a better word, digital.

The review states that the "genius of Balenciaga is Ghesquière's projection of couture techniques into the world of new technology." This collection successfully takes on the idea of new technology or futuristic clothing because: 1) the ideas are infused into the clothing and materials (as opposed to being superficially quoted - we've seen a lot of this in the past and it makes for some very cheesy collections.) and 2) there is wonderful subtlety and expert editing overall. My little piece of criticism: I'm not a fan of the pants and the models are too pale and stern looking.

See the entire collection here. Check out the beautiful campaign images on the Balenciaga site.


Gamma Player Chicago

This weekend I had the pleasure of visiting Gamma Player, one of my new favorite stores here in Chicago, to take some photographs of the lovely accessories they carry to share with you. The store is owned and run by a couple, Yoko Uozumi and Jeff Mills, who are originally from the music industry. Interestingly, Gamma Player is a side project that grew out of their exposure to the rich, complex culture that exists between fashion, design, music and fine art as they pursued their careers running a record label.

First and foremost, it seems to me that Gamma Player is a place to explore ideas. I love that the store comes from a desire for conceptual investigation and ends up providing a physical space with tactile objects where the public can interact and share in the investigation. Each season, the store presents a new overarching concept with which to present the various designers they carry. In the past, artists have been commissioned to create in-store installations. The name Gamma Player comes from a song that Mills composed. According to Mills "Gamma Player means one who travels beyond boundaries. A participant in the Game of Chance who manages to the risk involved in hopes of achieving more than just a satisfactory outcome."

Gamma player is a place "where lines between fashion, art and music are blurred into a common thread in which to support new ideas that are so desperately needed." As you can see from the photographs, they carry beautiful jewelry, men's accessories, music, books, as well as men and women's fashion.

Here is just a sprinkling of designers you'll find at Gamma Player:

24/7 Suits (Milan)
Anne Valerie Hash
Firma (Berlin)
flos ad florem
Julius (Japan)
Tatsuya Shida
Tre Shida


Yannick Mur: Plexivoires

Plexivoires is a jewelry collection by Yannick Mur using vegetable ivory or corozo with bits of plexiglass and fine stones. Before designing jewelry, Mur was an accomplished ballerina who switched over to jewelry design after a trip to Rajasthan.

An interesting note on her use of vegetable ivory/corozo "Vegetable ivory is attractive both from an environmentalist and a humane perspective, since its use stimulates the local economies and microenterprises in South America, provides an alternative to cutting down rainforests for farming, and prevents elephants from being killed for the ivory in their tusks". (Wiki)

Armani Privé: Spring 2009

Though the artistry in this collection is evident, sometimes the strength lies in the details or the parts as opposed to the whole. If you do check out the entire Armani Privé collection, I'm going to say that I'm not crazy about it but I am crazy about certain parts of it. The first image, well that's just overall a stunning dress and I love it. The second dress is also incredible with the floating quality of the intricate lacy patterns and the beautiful beige color. The third, a steel gray suit is perfect until we get to the skirt, which looks odd in contrast with the rest of the outfit. I think it needs to be a little less loose. Fourth image, slick purple suit material is amazing. The fifth and final image is a beautiful silhouette, the colors and qualities of the lacy fabric are lovely.


Chanel + Katsuya Kamo: Spring 2009 Haute Couture

These are detail shots of the incredible work that hairstylist Katsuya Kamo did for Chanel's Spring 2009 Haute Couture show. All of the elaborate flower headdresses you see adorning the models are made of white office paper. Apparently "it only took him and six or seven helpers three weeks and two packets of 11 x 17 office paper"(NY Mag). Here is a link to a few images of Kamo's previous work.


Yuken Teruya Studio: Notice-Forest and Corner Forest

I love this work by Yuken Teruya. It's beautiful, subtle and delicate; some of the qualities that make it so successfully subversive and political. Some of the best political work engages a viewer, instead of overtly pronouncing or preaching a message, by presenting an idea that is more complex than the critical stance the artist or the work may take.

Here is a quote from Yuken's site about his own practice:

"Pizza Boxes, a McDonald's bag, Flags, Desserts and Toilet Paper rolls... when these items become artworks, they also easily become political, maybe because they are taken from daily life. But if you find unexpected shapes and colors from the toilet rolls, they become something else. It's not about politics anymore, and you can take out the idea of toilet paper roll to your house.

Without criticizing the present, I prefer to find new clues to problems that are likely to polarize.

I feel that my work shouldn't only have the function of conveying the artist's message. My works have a right to simply be beautiful or offer any kind of attraction."