Hey there, world!!!! Quite a bit has gone on since I’ve last popped on. Let me get you up to date: -I’ve launched my website (ericfarrstyle.com). -Managed to get a handle on my work schedule, so now I have time … Continue reading
When Edward Enninful was offered the position of Editor In Chief at British Vogue, following Alexandra Shulman’s departure, I was quite excited. I had been somewhat familiar with his work as a stylist for some of the other publications that I love (I.D. and Italian Vogue to name a couple), and I was quite curious to where he would take Vogue next.
Loving his work the way I did, I was totally ready for another “Black Issue” like he did for Italian Vogue, but I know that could alienate the readership. I was also ready for it to go the route of I.D., Blitz and The Face, but again, the change would be too drastic. When I finally got the issue, I had to sit and eliminate anything and everything that could distract me (computer, phone, Itunes) and take in each page, including the ads. I wanted to get the feel of his version of Vogue.
The first issue is called “The British Issue” and it’s celebrating Britian and all it’s talents, despite the whole Brexit thing.
Great Britian as a country and London as a city meant and still means a lot to me. This was the place where I wanted to be and build my career as a designer. This is the place where all of my favorite music and designers come from. This is the place where I want to make my mark in any way I can. It’s coming along slowly, but it’s coming along. London has put a spell on this born and bred New Yorker, with all of the creativity of the fashion and nightlife worlds.
Edward covers the gamut of people explaining why Britian is so special and how their experiences here shape what they do here and in the world at large.
One article has the amazing author, Zadie Smith talking about the Queen and how many view her, and the context of who she is. It’s an article that has given me an interesting view of how her country sees her compared to how Americans see her. My view of the Queen, before I came to London has always been of awe, wonder and curiosity. I know that she is human, so I’m sure she does the same thing that everyone else does, but not in the same context. Zadie sees her as a lower middle class woman that keeps it simple, when everyone else wants to complicate things, more like the women that we have as grandparents, or aunts.
Another article I enjoyed quite a bit is the article about the nephew of artist, Lucien Freud, whose painting of performance artist, Leigh Bowery is one of my favorites. His name is Matthew Freud and he is an art collector that is known for his amazing parties. I love the idea of keeping a party relaxed and fun with fun food and different personalities rubbing shoulders together. In this world you never know who you could meet or the friends you could make from attending one of his parties. He believes that parties, especially the ones he throws are like art installations and there is no space for ego, or V.I.P. treatment. Although he may have thrown parties with all kinds of celebrities and friends of his, he is also a major art and furniture lover. His art collection is like the well curated collections in museums and he is considered the best connected man in London. When you have a home like his, full of amazing art, beautiful furniture, and great people providing the atmosphere, you can’t help but see this a a recipe for a fantastic night out at an awesome house party.
Two other articles really stand out for me, because they are just perfect in every way!!! One is of Gwendoline Christie (Brianne of Tarth in Game Of Thrones) speaking about playing strong female characters, women with a voice and a sense of power of who they are. The other is the interview of the Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan done by another strong, powerful woman, Naomi Campbell. They talked about their upbringings and of being people of color in a country where it wasn’t so always nice to people that are not like each other. These are two people that made it to the top of their fields through sheer determination, ambition, and a lot of fight. Being a person of color anywhere, you have to always be tougher and smarter than the others. It’s like a phrase that my grandmother would always say to me, “You have to work twice as hard and be twice as smart to get the same things that others get easily, just by being who they are”.
This issue is more than just amazing fashion on beautiful women. It’s all about the Great Britian that produced all of these talented, creative beings.
Edward Enninful’s Britian is a place where inspiration and creativity run free, where we can pick up on the beat of the street as well as the beat by the Royal Albert Hall. It’s the place where the opportunities come when you step out and take a chance in all you believe in and show the world what you can do. This is the place where you can make your mark outside of the the typical fashion system. You can do it your way!!!!
His second issue has Taylor Swift on the cover, in a way that I have never have seen her. I’m not a fan of her music, but I do understand why she is so popular amongst young women and gay men. She’s an empowered young woman and she empowers all that come into her orbit. This particular issue is all about the transformation of self, not just with fitness and beauty treatments, but with changing the mindset and coming into your own, pushing forward to make your dreams come true and setting the goals to get there.
It’s something that we all have to do in life. There are many times where we are told “No!”. or laughed at because we want to punch above our station, or being told to “stay in your lane”, and every time we’re told these things, we either roll up the sleeves to prove them wrong, or we take the knocks and stop in our tracks, convinced that it won’t happen. This is the time of year where we reflect on what we’ve done to get here and what are we gonna do to change things in the New Year (lose weight, go to the gym, meet the one of your dreams, etc.), and the plans we need to make to make those dreams and goals happen (get that gym membership, make the time, put in the work no matter what, put yourself out there in every way, be open to learning more about yourself and others).
The editorial of Taylor was done by Mert Alas & Marcus Piggott, and styled by Edward. The shots and the styling shows Taylor in a completely different light and shows the lessons she learned in a poem penned by her. These shots can make me a fan!!!! Total respect for her and all that she has achieved.
My girl crush, Adwoa Abdoh has a column all about Gurls Talk, where she created a platform for women and girls to speak openly about the things that they need to hear to boost their confidence as well as learn about themselves and their dreams. Many women and girls have been conditioned to not want certain things or forced to turn away from what they want because it’s not right for them to want that (whatever it is). Women and girls have always been told to be smart, but not too smart, or to be successful, but not too successful, because it upsets the balance of things. Adwoa, as well as her team of people that help her with this want to drive the point that women can be anything and everything they want to be and that they need to be proud of that. I love her confidence and her goal to make all women confident to go for their dreams and to be comfortable in their own skin.
Another article I loved in this issue is the article about one of my FAVORITE designers, moving to Los Angeles, Tom Ford. Tom is one of my favorites because he is uncompromising in his vision and he never allows what others think of what he does to shake him. He has the kind of confidence that, even if you hate him, you’ll love and respect him. He’s ten years older than me and still has that confidence of a younger man, full of piss and vinegar, but with the wisdom to do it with grace and steely determination.
The one thing I can say about these two issues of Vogue is that Edward is making his vision of the Vogue woman known to the world and is taking her in a new direction. Hats off to Edward Enninful and his amazing talent!!!!!!
Stay fashionable and sexy!!!!!
Hello, ladies and gentlemen!!!! I am back and in a big way!!!!! Quite a bit has been going on and that has taken me away from communicating with you in this way. All will be revealed little by little as things are beginning to come to fruition. I thought I would come back to the blogosphere with a post that I love doing. This post is all about your Ten Fashion Questions. Let’s get started.
1- What ten items should I buy for my wardrobe?
Every man’s wardrobe should have these 10 versatile items, because they can work for every occasion, like job interviews, date nights, parties, pub crawls, church, etc. The main focus of ALL of these are fit. In order for all of these pieces to look good, you need to make sure you have the right fit for your body type. You have to know what your body type is (slim or skinny, athletic, husky, tall, short, etc.). The best way to determine that is through your height and weight (there are also additional measurements to be more exact, but if you know just your basics, you can work around everything else). No matter what, these are your basic pieces and they can be found in EVERY SIZE, so there’s no excuse to not get or have them:
1- White dress shirt
2- Black or navy 3 piece suit
3- Black, navy, or brown dress shoes
4- Black or navy v-neck sweater
5- Dark denim jeans
6- Light denim or white jeans
7- Black, navy or brown casual shoes
8- White or black trainers/sneakers (more fashion, less athletic)
9- Black or navy roll neck/turtleneck
10-White v-neck or crew neck t-shirts
With these basic pieces, you can achieve smart, casual looks as well as amazing dressy looks. You will also need proper accessories with these pieces (black leather dress belt, brown leather casual belt, cuff links (if you purchased French cuffed shirts), black, blue or red ties (bow or neck), fun socks, white socks, black dress socks, and proper underwear). One of the main things that you will need to all of these things work is confidence. If you don’t feel good in the clothes, it will show and it won’t look good, so make sure EVERYTHING FITS!!!!!!!
2- Do you think MarcoMarco (underwear designer based in California) actually tries to create “new fashion” or is just lost with his kilograms/meters/bolts of black and fluro jerseys?
I don’t think he’s trying to create “new fashion”. He’s just offering another option of fun, colorful pieces. He knows his market, so he is catering to them. Andrew Christian does the same exact thing. He’s not reinventing the wheel.
3- Why do high end designers design clothing that most rich people won’t even wear?
When designers create a collection that will be shown on the runways, everything that is done is about moving the brand forward. A runway show is just that, a show, so there are pieces that are made specifically for that. Those pieces will be the pieces that dictate the direction or mood of the collection. Those are the pieces that showcase the trend or trends that the designer wants to set for the season, get the fashion editors crazy with getting it in their magazines, the bloggers to get it on their blogs and the pieces that drive the name of the brand forward. The show pieces are the pieces that you see that make you want to look into the brand because of the artistry. These pieces are featured in the magazines, along with some of the bread and butter pieces to create the fantasy of that girl or that guy in some beautiful location. Those pieces are also bought and worn by many rich people, many for special events, etc. The rest of the pieces are the bread and butter pieces, the pieces that you will see in the stores and the pieces that will put the trend forward.
4- What is in for this winter?
Fall/Winter is a fun time for fashion, because it’s all about layers. Your tried and true sweaters of every type exist (from acrylic to cashmere) and there is always a statement ankle boot, to go with your long wool coat (camel or any other color, mostly red and pink). This season, it’s all about pops of color and volume volume volume. Long cashmere scarves that are extra comfy, sweaters that are extra soft, faux fur and Montcler ski wear.
5- Are neckties doomed to oblivion? What type of ties are best for business beside the classic style?
Neckties will never go out of style. Because there are so many different kinds of knots, you can always showcase a bit of your personality within the staid business of a suit. The types of ties that are best for business all depends on what kind of job you do and how much fun you like to have when dressing up. If you work in finance or insurance, black, blue, green, stripes, checks, or paisley work quite well. If you work in art, music, fashion, any color works as long as it goes with what you’re wearing. I once had a job in the financial district in New York and I always used to provide a bit of my personality in my ties. Although, at that time it was quite strict about our looks, I always managed to put a little of me in there and push the boundaries. It didn’t always go over well, and when I explained why I did that with my ties (he was an old finance guy), he basically dismissed it and said to me that if I want to show off my personality, then I should get a job in the fashion industry, so I quit and got a job as a messenger in the Conde Nast building (where ALL of the fashion magazines were published and had offices there). Nowadays, most guys don’t wear ties anymore, but they always have a special place to smarten up any look and to showcase a bit of your colorful personality.
6- Why is it so hard for a bias cut dress to come out well?
Bias cut dresses are a wonder of their own, and they’re the dresses that you only have one chance to get right. Bias cut dresses are dresses that are created when the fabric is cut at a diagonal instead of straight, which takes more fabric and very little sewing. Greta Garbo wore a lot of these kinds of dresses in her films, because they showcase a woman’s curves, allow the movement of a woman’s body, showcase the line of her posture. and they look very seductive without anything hanging out or looking vulgar. These are the dresses with the least amount of construction, yet they give the maximum amount of impact when one is done right. You can see everything without seeing everything. You can get these dresses wrong if you don’t understand a woman’s shape, or if you use the wrong kind of fabric (silk is the best fabric to use for bias cut dresses).
7- How old is too old for skinny jeans?
It’s all about body type, when it comes to skinny jeans. If you are a tall, skinny or slim guy, then they will always work in your favor. When guys are in their teens and 20’s, they live in their skinny jeans, because they still have the small bodies to carry them off. When you get to your late 20’s-early 30’s, your body starts to change, so you may have to go up a size in them to cover your expanding waistline/thigh/calf. If you’re athletic, you can do them as long as you keep your waistline/thigh/calf the same. If you are of a huskier size, then it would depend on the cut at the waist. Most skinny jeans are lower in the waist, so you may need to find a slightly higher waist with tapering at the ends. Best way to tell if a jean works well on your shape, crouch down and reach your hand behind you. If you can feel the crack of your ass, the waist is too low. If you feel the denim pulling in your legs, the jeans are too tight. Also in a standing position, look at how they look in the mirror. Do they showcase what you’re trying to hide (waist is too low, so it may show off a belly, etc.)? Most skinny jeans are made with stretch denim, so they can work for all body types, just make sure you get the right waist type. You can wear skinny jeans at any age, but you have to be clear of your body type. A Dad body type can’t wear the same jeans his son wears.
8- What is your opinion on summer styles designed for winter? Fleece long shorts and compression socks with boots, for example.
In my opinion, the idea of those pieces are to make the transition from the warm season to the cold season, even though most of those kinds of pieces were originally made for things like mountain climbing and snowboarding. Doing them in an urban setting is pretty cool, though, especially because they’re doing them in crazy summer colors.
9- What do you think about the effects of the ‘see now – buy now’ development? Will it benefit the industry or just further cheapen it? And what do you think that will mean for the journalism side and the buyers?
The “see now- buy now” phenomenon is great for the consumer, because the items are available right after the show online, or in selected stores (Selfridge’s had some of the pieces from the SS17 collection from Moschino available right after the show). However, it means that the brand will have to keep up with the creativity to keep up with the demand and they would have to think even further ahead to stay on the pulse. If they do certain pieces as exclusives (like with Selfridge’s), it wouldn’t be so bad, because when the full line drops in the store, people will have already lived with the trend/concept for a bit and they are more likely to snatch up all of the pieces, showing some sense of brand loyalty. As for the buyers, it bodes well for them, because their purchases will get people in the stores to get it or at least try it on, and it bodes well for the fashion journalists/bloggers, because they can cover the brand and items in the articles/blog posts, especially at a time when things can be dead in retail as well as in fashion, which will get everybody talking before the season drops. The only issue I have with this is that it cheapens the idea of getting a luxury item. If everybody has it, what’s the luxury?
10- How do you make a chronic alcoholic look like he hasn’t just crawled out of the ground?
A great shower, a few glasses of water, an awesome blow dry, the right concealer and foundation and some light contouring and a little bronzer and you can look like you just got in from a holiday in Ibiza.
Thank you so much for your questions!!!! Keep them coming and I will answer them in my next post!!!!
Stay fashionable and sexy!!!!!
There are many designers that inspire me with their work and artistry, but this designer not only inspires me, but we have a lot in common. We both grew up in rough neighborhoods, we both share a love for Yves … Continue reading
A few days ago, I took to my Facebook page and put it out there that I would answer ten fashion questions. Doing posts like this are always my favorite, and most fun posts. Not only do I get to share a little of my fashion knowledge, but I get to know more of you. Lets get started.
1- What is your favorite way of combining black and white?
I love combining black and white in every way. I enjoy clashing black and white patterns (checks with stripes and polka dots). To me, it gives them an edge and provides a kaleidoscope effect.
2- From your point of view, is the claim “Black goes with everything” justified? Why or why not?
Black goes with everything is justified because, like white it is the absence of colour and whatever doesn’t have colour, enhances the colours used. Black can make things darker. White can make things brighter.
3- In the fashion world, what do you think should be the most important factor that drives the success of a collection? Design and creativity/originality, profitability and marketability, or ready to wear everyday accessability for public purchase?
That is a good question. It would depend on the designer. Success of your collection comes from all three of those things in any combination. When I was studying design in school, we were always taught to know your customer. You have to know who you’re creating for, be it menswear or womenswear. The success of your collection comes from what you can offer your customer that makes sense with what you do (i.e. Burberry is successful because they still flip the script on their classic trench and all the clothes they make are in line with their brand identity, even when Burberry went through their chav/football hooligan period). A customer has to see how it can fit into their lives (i.e. can it be worn to work, cocktail party, etc.) and go with what they already own. It also has to be accessable (i.e. online or in store) and can still be worn, even if it’s no longer the trendy piece or brand.
4- Which fashion period would be the most fascinating for you to work in?
The 1970’s, definitely!!! Fashion exploded with so many different things. Designer jeans came into the picture (Jordache, Sassoon, Sergio Valente). Stretch fabrics were used for clothes to wear to the discos and the streets. High and low fashion came into play. Polyester fabrics and blends went into everything and made fashion fun, colourful and accessable to everyone.
5- What was the first thing you made, fashion wise?
A white gown with a shoulder overlay and a V-shaped neckline. I made it for a drag show that I was in. I also hand sewn the whole thing. That was when I knew that I wanted to focus on designing clothes. This was also during my club kid period, so the pieces gradually got more outrageous and colourful.
6- Do you think fashion sense is genetic?
No. Fashion sense is all about style. Style can be taught, but you have to have an eye for things which is something you can develop over time. It’s more than matching colours. Personal style comes from being able to put together the things that showcase the best sides of yourself, that showcase you in the best light. When you have personal style and fashion sense, along with confidence, your look should be effortless. You can always spot the ones that are trying to hard. It should never look like you’re trying too hard. You should look like you’re comfortable and having fun, even if the look doesn’t work.
7- Do you wear underwear with your kilt?
No. I’d be kicked in the head by a Scotsman if I wore underwear under my kilt.
8- Why are men still wearing trousers? Apart from Gaultier, who else is out there creating changing fashion for us?
There are many designers creating unisex fashion and more outrageous menswear (see blog post about unisex fashion), but as much as they are creating it, only a small segment of men are accepting it. If more men did accept wearing skirts of all types as well as dresses, then it would take off. The problem is that it gets fed into the trend cycle thing and that makes it like a passing fad. Also most men associate skirts and dresses with womenswear, which doesn’t help. Guys hate being ridiculed by their peers, so you gotta have steel balls to do any of these types of looks.
9- Are we witnessing the death of fashion (as we know it) as it was forecast by Li Edelkoort last year?
I don’t think this is the death of fashion. I think this is the death of creativity in fashion. To me, the fantasy element of fashion is gone. Even innovation has disappeared in some cases. There used to be a time when a designer would come up with something innovative (a new fabric, a new way to wear something, a new silhouette, etc.) that would revolutionize the way we dressed and the way we saw fashion. Now, every designer wants to look like every other designer, so there is no real signature, and everyone wants to look like (insert celebrity/reality tv star name) without bringing anything of their own to it. Individuality used to be something everyone craved. Now, no one wants to go near it. Designers used to want to be completely different from each other (i.e. if Karl Lagerfeld did black, Yves Saint Laurent would do white). They would acknowledge their influences of each other (even if they were rivals), but now most of them want to do the same exact things, so it all looks generic. I understand that is more because of the conglomerates that are taking over fashion, because to them, it’s about the bottom line, not the artistry.
10- If you could be mentored by any designer alive or dead, who would it be?
Alive, would be Vivienne Westwood. She embodies everything I dreamed London would be. Her attitude speaks to me more than any other designer. She is willing to go against the grain and challenge the status quo. You have to be a certain kind of person to wear her clothes. Her punk beginnings and life shows that she doesn’t compromise who she is. You either get in where you fit in or hang on for the ride. Love that about her and that’s how I am.
Dead- Yves Saint Laurent. He always knew how to bring the fantasy to the street, from couture house to the corner. His attitude speaks to me as well. He always wants the glamour to show, no matter where you are, no matter who you are. He never compromised who he was. He made you get hip to him. He would be the first to say “fuck you” and do things his way and you would fall to his feet as he reminded you that he told you so. This is the kind of designer that needs to exist now.
So, there it is everyone!!! The answers to my ten fashion questions. I hope you enjoyed this as much as I have. Let me know what you think!!!
Stay fashionable and sexy!!!
Fashion is mostly defined by sex or gender (menswear, womenswear) but there are a few designers that are bucking that old notion and turning it on it’s ear. These designers are creating things for all genders to wear.
Unisex refers to things designed for both sexes and to a style which both sexes look and dress in a similar way. Although the first use of unisex was in the 1960’s, during the youth culture in the United States and the United Kingdom, it stretches back to the late 19th Century in France as part of the “Victorian Dress Reform”. The first development of unisex clothing freed women up to be more active. This really took off during the women’s movement when they started to adopt wearing trousers. It took a while to take, but when it did, everything changed. It started as clothes for sport (riding horses, riding bicycles, playing cricket) and then moved into everyday alternative for skirts. Unisex clothing became more widespread in the 1960’s and 1970’s.
Which brings us to today. Unisex clothing has been quietly making waves in the fashion world with androgony popping up on the runways and on the streets. Designers have been slowly bringing it to the forefront, taking cues from all sexes and creating for them. Some may have a few pieces in their collections that are unisex. Others are creating everything unisex. Here are a few of my favorites:
Rad Hourani- http://www.radhourani.com
Rad Hourani is a Canadian based, multi hyphenate like Karl Lagerfeld. Designer, photographer, film maker, artist. His work is an attentive observation of humanity that celebrates neutrality as a defining trait. His process advocates non-conformity as the essence of individuality. He approaches this through painting, sculpture, photography, costume, sound and video. All of his pieces can be worn by men and women of different ages. Check out his site to get a view of his amazing work.
Willis Chan- (willischan.ca) (antemeridiemsstudio.com)
Another Canadian based designer that make some amazing unisex designs along with some awesome visuals and contributes to Ante Meridiem is Willis Chan. The pieces for Ante Meridiem are a collaborative effort and this current season merges traditional American sportswear with Japanese tailoring. This is another batch of pieces that I need to save some money for. They are mostly staple pieces, but they are made beautifully.
I’ve also come across a site that also has pieces that can be worn by men and women. This site I have been regularly checking to see if there is anything new on the pipeline. It is called KowTow and it is based in New Zealand (a place that I would love to visit) (www.kowtowclothing.com). Althought the pieces on the site are being modeled by a woman, many of the pieces can be worn by a man. Loose fits and neutral colors make up the pallette of the brand. Many of these pieces can be layered and can be worn anywhere.
Take some time and check out the sites mentioned and let me know what you think.
Stay fashionable and sexy!!!!
Love this article!!!!! Amazing!!!!!!!
The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2014 annual report for this blog. Here’s an excerpt: A New York City subway train holds 1,200 people. This blog was viewed about 4,600 times in 2014. If it were a NYC subway … Continue reading
Picking up from where we last off, I am showcasing my favorite designers from Day 4. Let’s get started.
The first designer of Day 4 is Sankuanz, a designer sponsored by GQ China. LOVE THE COLLECTION!!!! So colorful, yet so sharp. This is something to wear if you want to stand out, with some tailored effects. The tailoring is amazing and these are looks that a man with a bold personality can pull off. I love a lot of these pieces!!!!! Here are a few shots:
Another one of my favorites is heritage label, Burberry. Exceptional tailoring and totally British in look and feel, this is a brand that has taken great strides to be on the pulse of fashion. Will all of the recent shakeups that have gone on with the house/brand and the creative director, now also taking on the business aspect of the company, he may have a lot on his plate, but this is the collection that will make or break him. The collection is amazing and I don’t think there will be any problems with this selling. Here are a few shots:
This is Xander Zhou, another one of my favorites from Day 4. Totally reminds me of the New Romantic period, when Spandau Ballet were in their heyday. Sleek and modern with an edge!!! Love it!!!! Here are a few shots:
Well, this covers the whole of London Collections: Men. I loved a lot of the designers involved, but these were all the ones that stood out for me. You can check out all of the shows on http://www.londoncollections.co.uk/. Let me know what you think.
Stay fashionable and sexy!!!!!