Sunday, 30 October 2011

brands and label mania

When I picked up my friend from the railway station, I saw a girl with a fake Gucci bag and I started wondering why people actually buy some obvious imitations, (though you can't even call it like this.)
In this case it was an ordinary red shoulder bag with huge "Gucci-logo" which would have been completely acceptable without the logo.

I have shown you a lot of examples from fashion designers under the label "trends and inspirations", because this it what they mean to me. They are inspirations. I love to browse through magazines and watch fashion shows to get ideas for my own style. I look for colours, materials and prints, accessoires, hairstyle and make-up.

I think clothes don't need to be expensive to be stylish; and not everything with a brand name is automatically fashionable and flatters the person who wears it.
For the post of men's business wear for example we went with a friend through a couple of pictures from various designers and we choose the ones we liked most and started to analyse what the basic trends are. Later we went through my friend's closet and created three different outfits out of his existing clothes and decided to buy a sweater and another tie to make the looks complete.

I wish people would be more aware of what they like and what suits them instead of hiding behind big names.

Wednesday, 26 October 2011


Have you heard about the french rockabilly band Mustang? If you are not scared of a mixture of 50s music and french lyrics, you should try this!

Rockabilly is not just about music, but also about style. Main infuence comes from the early Rock N' Roll scene of the 1950s where artists created a new style of music inspired by the black music in the Southern States of the US. 
I have introduced you already before to the Irish singer Imelda May who combines Rock N' Roll with elements of boogie and blues and whose style is inspired by the fashion of the 50s, with pencil skirts and dresses as one can see in her videos.

And I so need a pencil skirt!!!

Tuesday, 25 October 2011

business look for men

I have already asked once, what to wear in office life and I found some inspiration for women from Iceberg. 
But what should men wear? I guess we women have it a bit easier as we are obviously the peacocks of our species and a men who dares to differ from the mass is watched with sceptic. Is man allowed to be fashionable? I would say yes!!!
The question is how do we like our men to look like? -Elegant, sporty, masculine? What is the colour palette? What different cuts and materials are there to choose from? And what kind of accessoires should men wear? A lot of questions... so I had a look around and would like to show you some examples.

_the elegant look 
I have choosen two examples from Gucci which I like because of their colour play. The first suit is black and the accents are created by the petrol shirt and a tie in the complementary colour purple. In the second outfit suit and tie are matching and the light grey gets some freshness through the pink shirt.

Fall/ Winter 2011

_a little bit of macho
Other good examples I found from Salvatore Ferragamo. His collection is a bit more masculine and in some cases even a bit macho. I liked in those two examples the variaton of shades. The first outfit is very light in beige and white and the second one plays with different shades of blue. Both are elegant and a bit more sporty.

Salvatore Ferragamo
Fall/ Winter 2011

_all about pattern
I guess most people are a bit afraid of patterns. But here are again two nice examples from Gucci. The outfits are very similar in their colours as the main theme is black and white. The pattern breaks the severeness of those strong contrasts. And this summer look even works without a tie. But I do feel a little envy about the red bag!

Spring/ Summer 2012

Salvatore Ferragamo is not so carefull with the use of patterns. He uses strong colours and bold stripes to create a new Al Capone look in dark green and rust brown.

Salvatore Ferragamo
Fall/ Winter 2011

Especially in the examples by Gucci, the slightly "old-fashioned" handkerchief plays a big role and experiences a rejuvenation in striking colours and patterns. You might have also noticed that the ties are used here without any pattern.

Fall/ Winter 2011

I have to admit that I am now a bit more intrigued in men's wear and I will continue my search, because at the weekend we went with these images in mind through my friends closet and found some suprisingly good matches, we have never been thinking of before. 

Sunday, 23 October 2011

favourite clothes - jumpsuit

I think I have found a new favourite piece of clothes: the jumpsuit.
While I was searching for a contemporary modern business look I found this gorgeous jumpsuits by Iceberg! I am actually a dress girl. I like the idea of one piece of clothes and its different ways of combinations with accessoires and jewelery. And the jumpsuit is similar.
           the evening look in shiny blue
elegant, but casual

I have choosen for you something elegant and something casual and they both look just ...gorgeous. Can't wait to jump in my own!

Friday, 21 October 2011

movie classics by Marlene Dietrich

Lately I got intrigued by those movie classics and this time it's all about Marlene Dietrich. She was famous for her androgyne sex appeal and her smokey voice.
The movie I can't wait to see is "Der blaue Engel - The Blue Angel" from 1929.

"Glamour is what I sell, it's my stock in trade"
Marlene Dietrich
the plot:
The Blue Angel follows a respactable teacher through his decay to a cabaret clown for the sake of passion and love. His descent begins when he punishes several of his students for circulating photographs of the beautiful Lola Lola, the headliner for the local cabaret, The Blue Angel. Hoping to catch the boys at the club, Professor Rath goes there himself one evening and meets Lola.
Consumed with desire and determined to remain at Lola's side, he returns to the night club the following evening and stays the night with her. The next morning, reeling from his night of passion, he arrives late to school to find his classroom in chaos and the principal furious with his behavior.
Rath subsequently resigns his position at the academy to marry Lola, but their happiness is short-lived, as they soon fritter away the teacher's meager savings and he is forced to take a position in Lola's cabaret troupe to pay the bills.
His growing insecurities about Lola's profession as a "shared woman" eventually reduce him to a mere shell of the man he used to be, consumed by his lust and jealousy. 

Marlene Dietrich in quotes:
"Most women set out to try to change a man, and when they have changed him they do not like him."

Wednesday, 19 October 2011

goth n' glamour

I want to introduce you to two talented artists from France who can't be more different from each other, but have a combining interest in the burlesque.
The first one is Justine Maillard with her project "Paris, ma jolie"
"Paris, ma jolie" by Justine Maillard
The other one is Marie Meier who has her goth n' roll graphic blog and hosts the Burlesque Corner where she sketches actresses in interviews and graphics in her own unique style. 
Valentina Del Pearls by Marie Meier
I came across her name in connection of her graphics of the "Club des 27" showing the famous singers who passed away at the age of 27 whose latest member is Amy Whinehouse.

Sunday, 16 October 2011

business look

I went with my colleague for a girl's lunch and while we are queuing and observing the well dressed men in front of us, we came to the conclusion that we would actually appreciate if our office would dress up a bit more. Back home I remember that I came across an interesting article in my favourite girl’s magazine dealing with the topic:
"What to wear in office life?"
Everyone might agree that the first impression is very importat and if you use your clothes as a tool they can for example reflect your creativity, individualism or self-confidence. These are important qualities which bosses and clients are also looking for.

                                   elegant suits in feminine cut
by Iceberg/ Resort 2012

Of course there are clothes, which are always on the secure side, like simple well fitting costumes and suits with light coloured blouses and shirts. Many clothing guides strictly advice against any fashion experiments at work.
(And while I am writing this I just receive a newletter about the latest business look...)

                          No little grey mouses at all!
Iceberg/ Resort 2012

But as the first impression is so important, does this kind of dress code not support an image of a little grey mouse?
I am afraid with this secure way of dressing one disappears into a grey mass and the possibilities of career and success as well.
If someone wants to be successful in business life, one first has to know about the dress code of the field of work he or she is dealing with. And I know that my job as an architect allows a lot of freedom in dressing as we have a slightly rebellious and artsy reputation.

                                 elegant shirt with pattern in
                             combination with skirts 
or well-fitting jeans
Iceberg/ Resort 2012

But even within every dress code, there is a wide range of colours, patterns and materials to play with and find an individual look to create an authentic style.

Saturday, 15 October 2011


two buildings one idea: 
The university building has a fixed metal skin with different sized circles which create a patterned protection from the sun.
university Paris
Institut du Monde Arabe
The windows of the Parisian museum are reminiscent of the intricate Arabic patterns seen in many buildings — but with a twist. 
Those metal eyes host to a changing and complex lighting effect that layers daylight from the 30,000 apertures. Since the kinetic wall is facing the south, the building controls thermal exposure and interior lighting.

Friday, 14 October 2011

something for the eyes and ears

... by Imelda May. I love the looks and music!

lace and feathers

I want to show you two accessories which add some glamour to every outfit. The first example is a necklace made from lace and sequins from Finnish designer Jenni Ahtiainen from gTIE, I have introduced you already before. You can wear it for example under a blazer instead of a blouse.


The second example are feather earrings with different coloured chains I have found from Max & Co.

Thursday, 13 October 2011

Paris IV - about art and design

Paris - the place to be

from 1900 - 1930, Paris was the focus for artists, writers and collectors from throughout the Western world. It was here that artists traveled if the would be updated on the latest trends in art.

It was here they setteled, if they wanted to be part of new trends.The movie Midnight in Paris by Woody Allen gives a short glimpse of the atmosphere during that time and shows what the myth is all about.
print by Salvador Dali
self-portrait as Mona Lisa
If you are interested, just have a short look at wikipedia on the long list of famous artists living in Montmartre. It's amazing!
La Maison Bernot - Maurice Utrillo 1924
One of our first excursion lead us to the Musée de l'Orangerie, the place of the famous Nymphéas by Claude Monet, which I have shown you before.

But the Orangerie is also home of the Jean Walter and Paul Guillaume Collection which includes beautiful paintings by Picasso, Gaugin, Matisse etc. And guess whom I found on one of the paintings:
Portrait de Mademoiselle Chanel
Marie Laurencin, 1923
I immediately liked it, even before I knew who the beautiful lady on the picture was!
Portrait de Madame Paul Guillaume au grand chapeau
André Derain 1928-1929
We also went to the Musée de Quai Branly with African, Asian and American art and one immediately understands why painters and collectors where so facinated during that period of time by the native art of this continets. There is such richness of abstract forms  which was completely new for the art scene, for example Pablo Picasso was inspired by the African masks and one can see similairities in his cubist paintings.

Regarding famous inhabitans of Montmatre, I haven't mentioned Toulouse Lautrec yet who is famous for his posters and paintings of the Moulin Rouge and its dancers. But I have a good reason as there is an exhibition in Copenhagen which I accidently might be able to see!

Wednesday, 12 October 2011

biker girl

A long term dream came true. I have just passed my motorcycle license!

colour blocking by Gucci

The current autumn collection by Gucci is inspired by the glamour of the 70s. The colour palette includes turquoise, violet, orange, red and mustard in brilliant shades and shows once again adventurous colour combinations perfect for the greyish season.

Autumn/Winter 2011

The collection offers loose-fitting mannish trousers, tweed skirt-suits and floaty dresses whereas the textures vary from dyed snake skin and laquered leather to soft fur and ruffles.

Autumn/ Winter 2011

just beautiful!

Tuesday, 11 October 2011

dreaming of silence

Another day we escaped the busy streets to an oasis of silence: La grande Mosquée de Paris in moorish style with its beautiful garden.
the minaret
and garden

There is also the possibility to get a taste of the Orient in the café and to relax in the hammam.

Monday, 10 October 2011

French Martini

As this month is about Paris, let's cheers for that with a French Martini!

50ml vodka,
a large dash of chambord
75ml fresh pineapple juice

Add all to a shaker and shake with ice! Serve in a Martini glass and decorate with some raspberries or blackberries and enjoy!

Paris III - exploring different food cultures

For me one approach to different cultures is connected to food. I think if you see what people eat, you learn something about their habits, rituals and history. I have some nice cooking books and I like to experiment with different tastes and spices. I very much like the french kitchen for its variety. If you look at France's geography, there is the Atlantic Sea, the Mediterranean Sea, mountains and sunny coasts, so that every region has different tastes to offer.

To get a glimpse on French cuisine we went to two very nice bistros:
Aux Lyonnais and Le Chardenoux

 Aux Lyonnais we tried the lunch menu with:

a plate of different sausages and terrines from Lyon
fish dumplings in crayfish sauce/ black pudding with apples
 nougat ice cream with apricot sorbet 

At le Chardenoux we had:

panned squids with espelette pimento/ cream of chestnut soup
preserved shoulder of lamb with mild spices
french toast with raspberries and pistachio ice-crem

Whereas the kitchen of the Lyonnais was basically french bistro cuisine the Chardenoux has taken already influences of the different food cultures mixing in a metropole like Paris. Something which I soemtimes miss here in Helsinki.
Chez Marianne

Already in the plane I was dreaming of real Falafel und Mezze in oriental style, so we found very close to our hotel "Chez Marianne" in Le Marais, the Jewish quarter, and shared Mezze and a nice rosé wine. You can sit outside, enjoying the view of the lively quarter and have a look at the huge crowd waiting patiently for their falafel to go.

and a view behind the red facade

Paris IV - about art and desingn is coming soon

Sunday, 9 October 2011

my autumn look from Paris

I have promised to show what was hidden in the bag on the picture below: and here it is. A beautiful bourdeaux-coloured silkdress from les petites...
I was wearing it yesterday for my birthday champagne.

I have combined it with glamourous make-up and accessories, but it's also possible to wear it as an casual dress in the office.

Saturday, 8 October 2011

des grands magasins et petites boutiques

...of course we also did some shopping. After the brave man on my side nearly got a panic attack in the Gallery Lafayette on a Saturday afternoon where just a piece of cake, a coffee and a lovely saleslady were able to help, we decided to explore the Marais quarter with it's nice little boutiques instead and save the grand magasins for the monday morning.

I will show you later what's inside the bag!

Friday, 7 October 2011

Paris II - an evening burlesque

"Le burlesque, c'est savoir utiliser ses atouts, rire de ses défauts. 
Que nous soyons rondes, petites, minces ou très grandes, nous sommes belles et sensuelles. 
Toutes les femmes ont le droit d'être glamour."

Cherry Lyly Darling

I think this quote is exactly what the burlesque is all about. No matter who you are and how you look, there is something beautiful in all of us. You just need the courage to show it.

I love rock n' roll, glamour and pin-up fashion and I came across the french webpage "Be burlesque" where I found "La Glitter Fever: les 2 ans", a small burlesque event in the lovely Théâtre Adyar far away from Lido or Moulin Rouge.

the burlesque artists were:

Belle Marquise
Bisou Belette
Louiza Ventura
Kiki Beguin
Miss Glitter Painkiller
Valentina del Pearls
Vivi Valentine
and Kitten de Ville

Our favourite was Louiza Ventura and I fell in love with the pin-up collection of Marie Cazenave who has her beautiful little boutique "Le boudoir de Marie" in Montmartre.


But if you are in Paris right now and you like the idea of burlesque, there is still the burlesque festival going on. I guess it's worth seeing!

Paris III - exploring different food cultures is coming soon

Au musée de l' Orangerie

Les Nymphéas by Claude Monet & ME