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Get The British Look

By June 16, 2017 Style

Words by Matt Huxley

In the olden days, Blackfriars was a salacious district of London. Prostitutes abounded and Shakespeare’s Globe was almost directly across the river. The area was a derelict hub of creativity, poverty and uniqueness. Today the area features Victorian architecture and is the setting for the film and TV versions of Sherlock Holmes and David Copperfield.

So when I happened across Blackfriars Lane in Sydney and I got the same Victorian British vibes, I knew that ti had to shoot a British-themed look there.

I’ve updated it somewhat – Victorian steampunk isn’t exactly in my repertoire – so it’s a modern take on British fashion. Naturally I’ve included the ubiquitous trench coat. This version is a wrap tie one in a thick wool. Obviously it’s completely impractical for Brisbane, but fuck it, it’s pretty.

I’ve also drawn inspiration from Anna Quan and the oversized cuff trend that’s dominating women’s fashion at the moment. By unrolling (and ironing the wrinkle out) your french cuffs you can achieve a similar look that’s still masculine. Plus I really love the crispness that a fresh white shirt adds to a look.

Topping off the ensemble with cropped, distressed jeans and cuban heel boots, I’m ready to tackle the London rain. Like not really cos these boots are suede, but ya get the gist.

Sidenote. Guys, invest in a good pair of cuban heeled boots. They add so much height, they make your legs look better, and they just elevate your outfit so much. It’s actually insane how much I love these.

What do you think of this outfit? Did I get tha lundun look?

This look was shot by Ali Gordon, make sure you go check her out on Instagram @modestoblog or on Modesto Blog.

Buy Sigma Brushes here.

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Coat – Topman | Shirt – Asos | Jeans – Asos | Shoes – Asos (similar)

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Akira Resort ’18 Review

By May 21, 2017 Style

Words by Matt Huxley

A perpetual embodiment of the androgynous, oriental aesthetic, the Akira show is always one of brilliant craftsmanship, inspired ideas and unique silhouettes. Think longline layers, loose fits, and a largely white colour palette.

Highlights of this collection included a turquoise coat/pant set with a white and beige granddad collar shirt. It was cinched at the waist with the accessory of the season – a primal red karate belt, the new obi. A few extreme long line shirts skimmed the ankle and were offered up as shirts or coats. A pure white boiler suit was layered over a beige granddad collar shirt and a candy pink cocoon coat made a statement over red layers.

The Akira signature floral was back, this time in an abstract Magnolia print supersized onto shirts and shorts. Another warm-toned abstract print was made into a kimono, referencing Akira’s Japanese heritage.

Box-cut shirts and extreme wide pants rounded out a solid collection from Akira. Was this his strongest collection? Probably not. But did it push the boundaries of androgynous and unisex fashion that little bit further? Definitely. I already have my eye on what I want!

Photos provided by Getty Images exclusively for Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Australia.

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Vmajor Resort ’18 Review

By May 20, 2017 Style

Words by Matt Huxley

As the international show for MBFWA, Vmajor had a lot of expectations to meet, and they didn’t disappoint.

Bringing back the sexy 70s in a retro-modern way that I certainly didn’t see coming. Think fringing added to skirt and top edges and sides. Retro plastic earrings, billowing silk dresses with large buckle chokers, and drop-shoulder raw-edge cotton. This is sport-luxe elevated out of the doldrums it has been in the past few seasons.

Strong looks included a longline chiffon 3/4 sleeve top with palazzo pants, a few nods to modernity with the addition of extended french cuffs to a few looks, and a severely distressed striped two piece (worn on the beautiful Alanda from White and Capsule on the day).

Elongated scarf-like sleeves on several of the garments was a great update on the extended cuff trend and provided a necessary point of difference from the other brands showing. Another clever move was the use of pleats in some of the outfits. Instead of presenting them in your basic ass skirt, pleats were used as stylistic and practical way along the front or sides of the garment. They added a textural, eye-catching element, plus allowed the garment to expand as necessary. Now if only they could do that for menswear… perfect buffet-visiting shirt? I think so!

Photos provided by Getty Images exclusively for Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Australia.

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The Innovators Resort ’18 Review

By May 20, 2017 Style

Words by Matt Huxley

The Innovators is a show that highlights the most astounding and avant-garde fashion that Australia has to offer. Last year, this was my absolute favourite show, and it wowed me completely.

This year, it still had a high calibre of designers, but it was significantly tamer.

A.N.X

A.N.X presented an oversized oriental inspired show that served to wow the crowd right off the bat. There were some definite standouts; a swallowtail collar shirt with extended french cuffs was a great layering piece. A fringed corset gave a new take on the corset belt trend, paired with a handkerchief hem front shirt it perfectly summed up the androgyny of fashion.

 

Yohana

Featuring hand painted Aboriginal patterns, Yohana gave us a well conceptualised collection.  A johnny collar cotters with a contrasting neck scarf was a buyers piece. Cocoon wrap dresses served to accentuate the female form with plunging necklines.

Richard Giang

Can we just firstly discuss how Richard is the cutest thing ever? I mean unf. Anyway. He presented a successful vampy line of white, black and burgundy. Tulle overlays, long duster coats, interesting use of leather and infinitely wearable layering pieces were the backbone of this collection. The frontbone (so to speak) was the faux crocodile skins (complete with legs) that were worn as bustiers. Too much? Potentially. Statement? Yes.

Ewol

If you ever wanted to combine an acid trip with snorkelling on the barrier reef, look no further than Ewol. The collection was a celebration of colourful childhood innocence, exemplified by the vajazzled dummies adorning several of the model’s mouths. The frilled leg warmers were a fun twist.

Handsy Swimwear

I must admit, I’ve never really thought about getting handsy with a model in swimwear. Oh how times can change. Really structured bathers, held together with laced up eyelets, was quite an interesting and stylish take on your regular swimmers. Laser cut midriff panels resembled the lattice of a cicada wing. All in all a very solid collection.

Akle

A unique take on the sleepwear trend, Akle took oversized waffle knits and spliced them with tartan and lashings of tulle. Silken coats and pants gave a wearable perspective.

Casea

Probably the most strongly curated of the Innovators collection, Casea utilised pan-asian influencers in order to present an orientalised collection that was both reverential and wearable. Chinese silks were paired with indian panel skirts. Western keyhole halters were there and so were Japanese obi belts. Denim patchwork reminiscent of the American south and Chinese Qin dynasty-esque headdresses. Russian tiered skirts with ruffled edges. It was a conflagration of colour and texture that just worked. Brilliant.

Photos provided by Getty Images exclusively for Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Australia.

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Yousef Akbar Resort ’18 Review

By May 18, 2017 Style

Words by Matt Huxley

It’s official. Sequins are back. Back in a big way.

The Yousef Akbar woman takes reference from the hedonistic Studio 54, 70s glitter punk and 80s prom queens.

There were moments of brilliance. A skin tight pair of dusty pink sequinned pants, a matching turtleneck layered with an emerald green slip. An all in one khaki look including face covering (very Grace Jones) with Ostrich tufts was a pleasant avant-garde interlude. A studded biker jacket with a back slit and gold riveting is a phenomenal buyer piece – it’ll fly off the shelves.

The use of small wooden planks to hold dress slits together and as shoulder detailing was phenomenal. It added the perfect craftsman touch to the outfits, a bit of roman centurion, which is always great.

Not every look hit the mark for me personally, but overall the show was a success.

Photos provided by Getty Images exclusively for Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Australia.

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We Are Kindred Resort ’18 Review

By May 18, 2017 Style

Words by Matt Huxley

Have you ever wondered what Mary Lennox would be wearing if The Secret Garden was set in the 21st century? Well now you know. We Are Kindred presented a sophisticated, romantic and insouciant collection that answers that very question.

Wisteria-hued bishop sleeved dresses and blouses drifted down the runway, anchored by floral handkerchief hem slips. Dame Edna eat your heart out. An accordion-pleated sky-blue two-piece with japanesque floral motifs was a clear highlight.

The early 00s made a triumphant return with halter-neck wide-leg jumpsuits and handkerchief hems. But don’t think that you’ll look tragic a-la Britney and Justin. These are chic, elegant designs that will make a luxurious addition to your wardrobe.

A slouchy lace two piece was another highlight. The perfect mix between daywear and night(y) wear. We Are Kindred takes pyjama dressing to an entire new level, and I for one am damn thrilled. Ps this was one of my top 3 shows. XOXO

Photos provided by Getty Images exclusively for Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Australia.

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Roopa Pemmaraju Resort ’18 Review

By May 17, 2017 Style

Words by Matt Huxley

It was a bright and colourful debut for Roopa Pemmaraju. Debuting their Indian inspired range to a crowd of minimalists agog with anticipation is no easy feat. But boy did they deliver. With an ethnically diverse model cast (which should be on every runway tbh) they debuted stunning look after stunning look.

Particular highlights for me was a tangerine orange handkerchief hem skirt, the feathered and bejewelled chokers that adorned many a model’s throat, a sheer gold coat, and a one shoulder sheath dress in bright orange and marigold yellow. As pretty as a sunset.

A garden of eden style dress was another hit, with a snake motif spiralling near the model’s heart. A golden v-neck sheath was emblazoned with scarlet red floral appliqué, making a strong closing statement.

Whilst the collection may have been full of warm primal colours, it was anything but in your face. With the scent of incense wafting through the air, the entire collection took on a relaxed and breezy atmosphere. We were transported to a night in Jaipur, and we won’t look back.

Images provided by Getty Images exclusively for Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Australia

 

 

 

 

 

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Next Gen Resort ’18 Review

By May 17, 2017 Style

Words by Matt Huxley

Next Gen is always a mixed kettle of fish. On one hand you have the opportunity to discover the future faces of the Australian fashion industry, on the other hand you also get to see the result of overconfidence and ambition. Whilst none of the designers in today’s showcase truly flopped, there were definite hits and misses.

Stanzee

Hands down, best show of the bunch. This was a fully realised, fully conceptualised showing. The designer made excellent use of tailoring in order to deliver a collection that was wearable, yet inspired. The intricate splicing use of sheer, leather and sequins was clever, the use of corset belts to cinch in the models’ waists was smart, and a pair of chiffon flairs with a doubled up hem were artistic genius embodied in a flowy af pair of pants.

 

 

 

Stephanie Henly

Another showing that I strongly enjoyed. An edgy collection, the use of ruched up sheer fabric to create coats and jackets was fantastic, as was the Margiela-esque mask paired with a extended cream gown and matching gauntlet globes. Whilst the inclusion of tassels was really nothing knew, it added to the garments, instead of being the primary focus of them. This type of restraint will surely serve Henly well in future showings.

 

 

 

Sarah Hope Schofield

A collection of Gaga inspired cowgirl hats and Comme des Garcons like felt squares, the Sarah Hope Schofield regrettably had more misses than hits for me. I applauded the extended seam pants which were both unique and creatively wearable. An extravagant larger than life polkadot bustier was also inspired.

 

 

 

Meredith Bullen

Think Tibetan Yak farmer meets Deadliest Catch and you’ll get the gist for this show. it wasn’t a total miss for me, and the collection was clearly inspired and quite well crafted, however for me it was a case of too much. There was too much fur, too much rope and just too much of everything. An oversize jumper with extended cuffs and rope detailing was a standout piece for me. Good concepts, but just needed a tad more restraint and refining.

 

 

 

Victoria Bliss

For me this was the epitome of farmer chic. Believe it or not that’s not a criticism. Think rock patterned bustiers and corsets layered over stark white shirting. Woven hats and hands filled with barley strands. Tartan and gingham galore. Brilliant crafting. One of them was a real throwback to Gisele Bundchen in the 2006 VS Show. Such vibes. Let’s also spare a thought to the model who fell. Girl, ya got up and owned the entire rest of the runway, don’t beat yourself up. Props to you.

 

 

 

Isabelle Quinn

I’m honestly in two minds about this show. There were specific pieces I loved, but the overall star motif gave me a distinct Americana vibe that I just wasn’t vibin (such pun). A pair of capri length flute flair pants were completely and utterly brilliant. As was a bustier/cream shirting combo. But the stars emblazoned onto leather and sheer were just a tad too much. Crafting however was impeccable.

 

 

 

 

Images provided by Getty Images for Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Australia.

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Zhivago Resort ’18 Review

By May 16, 2017 Style

Words by Matt Huxley

It’s really no secret that I have a deep, undying love for all things Zhivago. The edginess, the fact that the creations are inspired, and the fact that it’s all just so goddamn extra. It speaks to the inner drag queen in me. Somewhere inside of me, there’s a Latrice Royale just screaming to escape.

But I digress. Miami Nights was a resounding success for Zhivago.

What is immediately clear to me in particular is that the brand has matured. There’s still the same quintessential motifs; the power shoulder, the plunging neckline, the just-above-the-knee length and the structured, ribbed, elasticised hems. But it’s been elevated. Restraint has been shown and experimentation has occurred.

A gigantic highlight was the integration of sequins into the collection. Arrayed in a rose pattern, they were appliquéd over fishnet to create a unique and textural material for jumpsuits (a la Met Gala Bella Hadid) and gowns.

Another experiment that went oh so right for Zhivago was the puffy sleeve. Whilst this may conjure up Jerry Seinfeld-esq horror stories, this was done the right way. Guaranteed you will want to look like a pirate. Cut in velvet, they gave me all the saloon realness. Particularly paired over the sequinned pants. The hourglass figure created is a celebration of womanhood and the female form.

There were many hits in the show, including a hotelier inspired red and black number, a muted floral fluted hem dress with a slit back and the OTT Zhivago branded sunnies and ear cuffs. Snooki eat ya heart out.

What’s also clear is that the entire show was conceptualised and thought out. From the music, to the fact that the models’ lipstick matched the shoes and the toenails, every single detail was checked off.

All in all, I think it’s pretty evident that this show was a resounding success, so let’s take a gander at the best images (provided by Getty Images exclusively for Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Australia duh).

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Steven Khalil Resort ’18 Review

By May 15, 2017 Style

Words by Matt Huxley

Do you remember that scene in The Devil Wears Prada where Miranda Priestley is at James Holt’s atelier and purses her lips at the catastrophic dress that he had designed specifically for her? Well it unfortunately happened today at Steven Khalil for Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Australia.

That probably makes it sound like the collection as a whole was bad. It really wasn’t. There were some truly standout pieces. A burgundy 50s silhouette dress was well structured, a cream dress had an elizabethan twist with a high ruffle neck, a boat-neck silver dress had exquisite shoulder ruffling reminiscent of an elegant cornice, and a peppermint tulle gown would’ve been loved by Frances Hodgson Burnett in all of her secret garden glory.

My ultimate fave was a thigh slit silver 90s style dress with a wrap sleeve. It clung to the stunningly curvy model with aplomb and was definitely my highlight of the night. Whilst it was clearly there as a buyers piece, it’s one that was successful and that I think will fly off shelves.

But. There was one catastrophe. A 50s style black and lemon creation with a gigantic cerise bow on the back. Unfortunately it was just irredeemable.

There were a few other misses; a drop waist wasn’t quite executed as well as hoped, one or two necklines were taken into J-Lo level of neckline plunge and a leotard with a lone strand of tulle went a tad too far into ice skater territory.

That being said, the entire quality of the collection was top notch. The fabrics were all of a beautiful quality and the cutting is always of the greatest precision. I’m a real fan of collections that have reference points, and this collection did have that, misdirected as some of them were.

Overall this wasn’t Khalil’s strongest showing, but it’s a showing that proves he’s trying to step out of his comfort zone, and that’s a step in the right direction.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

All images provided by Getty Images exclusively for Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Australia.

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