31 July 2012

Sui Generis Swag Icon of the Week: Willow Smith

Willow Smith at the 2012 Kids Choice Awards in a Chanel Spring 2012 dress

I've decided to start a little segment on the blog about the people I admire called "Sui Generis Swag Icon of the Week". Those of you who follow my twitter know that I use the term "sui generis swag" quite often. Being the basketball fan that I am, I first created the term to describe Craig Sager's sense of style. If you don't know who Craig Sager visit Google and you'll see why he inspired me. Did you see the suits? I know. I know.

For this first feature I want to highlight Willow Smith, the teen queen at the tip of every tongue these days, in part due to her family's fame but, mostly because of her style. The 11-year-old is in the style spotlight for her widely varying haristyles and colours (Rihanna's got nothing on her), her edgy shoe collection and bold print mixing. What I've observed with the vast majority of media coverage is that a lot of people have opinions about what this child should and should not do. The keyword there being child, a noun people seem to forget applies to little Ms. Smith. I've seen some pretty outrageous shit said about her (and to her). Things I don't even think people would say to adults so it's baffling that it's being spewed so vehemently at a child.

I recently watched an interview between Michael Yo and Willow on Yahoo's "The Yo Show" (really Michael?) where she talked about new music and her style evolution over the years. What struck me most about the interview is how completely innocent she was. This talented creative child who is under such heavy scrutiny for genuinely just wanting to have fun and express herself. Which is why we all fell in love with fashion in the first place isn't it?

From a fashion POV Willow has a lot of the same characteristics we love about our own style icons but people aggressively criticize her because of her age. I know that what I love about Anna Dello Russo is that you literally never know what she's going to wear next and even when it's outrageous it's fabulous. But alas, adults are hypocrites of the "do as I say, not as I do" mentality.

On this Willow said, “Grown ups [have] children and they say “you can be whatever you want to be.”  And then they go on my Instagram and comment, ‘How can your parents let you go out looking like that?’ Telling me that I can’t do what I want to do. When I’m someone’s child. You’re telling your kid they can be this but telling me I can’t be that.”

Point. Taken.

As far as I'm concerned, Willow can whip her bald colourful head anyway she pleases and I hope she stays on the straight and narrow path in the areas that matter.



18 July 2012

Yea or Nay: Opening Ceremony x Norma Kamali Sportsgear

The London 2012 Olympics is fast approaching and with all the excitement in the air I wanted to take a moment to regroup. In this moment, scrolling casually through my Facebook and Twitter updates, I was assaulted stopped by the above image from Opening Ceremony promoting their collaboration with Norma Kamali.

Now, while this is the designer behind the sexy pewter swimsuit that hugged Rihanna's bod in Hawaii (see pic below) and many other designs that I've adored over the years, I am not a fan of this collection. At all. In my mind, it belongs in The Fifth Element which I've seen at least 100 times and as much as I love it, I don't necessarily yearn to look like a stray extra wandering the streets of the city 15 years later. In another fabric choice, and with shorter sleeves, I could have loved this. Maybe.

Rihanna in Norma Kamali's Snake Mio Swimsuit
I do actually love the red dress, it could be exquisite for the right occasion but somehow the other looks are rubbing me all the wrong ways like polyblend. What do you think of the Norma Kamali x Opening Ceremony collection, Yea or Nay?



22 June 2012

Current Obsession: Crochet

I'm currently experiencing pangs of regret for not learning how to knit when I had the chance. Oh the days of my youth. Fortunately for me, and the rest of us crochet junkies, there are those who paid attention to knitting 101 and became the experts who can bring us stunning looks on the runway a la Isabel Marant's Spring 2012 Collection (this is my favourite look from the collection shown above). 

I especially love this trend because as much as it can be a mainstay in winter, it can also be warm-weather friendly for fashionistas like myself who live closer to the equator.

The Crochet Trend as featured by WhoWhatWear this month
The new crochet has evolved past our grandmother and great-grandmother's skillset (unless you're exceptionally lucky) and come in a wide range of colours and looks for all shapes and sizes and even all dress codes (see Zoe Saldana's elegant look above). I've been doing some digging and compiled a few affordable looks (under US$60) for you to get in on the trend this season with dresses, tops, shoes and swimwear!









8 June 2012

Beyoncé in Paris: All Yellow Everything

Ok so not yellow everything but Beyoncé stepped out with Jay-Z in Paris yesterday (leading up to the European leg of his 'Watch the Throne' tour with Kanye West) wearing this yellow monochrome Surface to Air short suit and looking absolutely radiant. Yellow is enjoying its moment in the spotlight recently from suits to dresses to nail polish. 

She complimented the look with a pair of Spring 2012 Prada Jewel-Toe Flame Sandals and an Alexander McQueen animal print Demanta clutch.

Short suits are a must-have this season and every season actually for those of us who, like myself, live in warm weather climates but would still like the aesthetic of a suit. Admittedly, keeping up with the trends is a daunting task but I believe the short suit can withstand the test of time. You can toss the jacket during the day then throw it on in the evening when it gets a little cooler. It's perfection.



4 June 2012

Rihanna Covers Esquire UK July 2012

In other Rihanna news, the pop sensation strips all the way down (yes, again girl) for the July issue of Esquire UK which hits stands today. She was shot by Matt Irwin in what Esquire is calling her "sexiest ever shoot".

Don't know if it's sexier than GQ's January 2010 Issue or Esquire's own shoot last year when they dubbed her "the sexiest woman alive" but that's a matter of personal opinion. It begs the question though, are sexy and nude synonymous terms now?

Watch the behind the scenes video of the shoot here:

And a quick look at the spread (some of which she shared on twitter):

Will you be rushing to get your copy today or have you seen enough of Rihanna in various states of undress?



Rihanna x Jeremy Scott: Rawr

Rihanna was snapped yesterday wearing these Jeremy Scott x Adidas Leopard Tail high-tops and although I could easily disregard the rest of the outfit (I could do without the pink Joyrich Cash Flow snapback), I must say I really adore these shoes. These are also the shoes she sported at Coachella this year.

I have admittedly scorned curiously studied more than a few of Jeremy Scott's Adidas creations (teddy bears and all sorts of other "sartorial" details which don't need to adorn my feet) but these - I love. I was on the fence about the little tail sticking out at the back but I had to remind myself that this is Jeremy we're talking about after all.

In anything else I would find the addition of a tail repulsive but, as I am a lover of (almost) all things leopard, I find this detail more charming than obnoxious.

Rihanna ready for Coachella..ella...ella.

Jeremy Scott x Adidas Originals Leopard Tail Sneakers:

What do you think, yea or nay on the high-tops?



29 April 2012

The Slow Productive Sunday

Oh Sunday. That day you roll over later than you usually would, have a luxurious 30 minute breakfast while reading this month's Harper's Bazaar (wishing you could acquire Mila Kunis's wardrobe and bright sparkling eyes), take naps, drink tea and ultimately - do nothing. Or perhaps that's just me. I personally believe this day is designed for us to be happy and sloooooow.

After several hours of lounging I usually get around to doing a few things that are a must for me on Sundays since I usually don't have time or energy to do them any other day of the week.

Here's what usually happens at some point in my Sunday:

Cleaning make up & hair brushes

This is important for me to do at least once a week because my skin is very sensitive to, well, everything. So I clean all of my brushes with a mild detergent and lay them out in a line to air dry. Men, clean your electric shavers/trimmers and your hair brushes also because they harbour bacteria. You probably will not do this any other day of the week so I think it's a good way to start the week off fresh.


Smooth glowing skin is everything. I usually scrub myself with a body brush daily or once every 2 days but on Sundays I ensure I also exfoliate my face, neck, hands and feet especially. Shaving also removes the top layer of dead skin but still exfoliate to reduce ingrown hairs. People often exfoliate their faces but forget their necks - pay attention to your neck! If you can't go out and buy a product now or you forgot, you can always use some good old baking soda or make an olive oil and sugar scrub.

Nail clipping/filing

It's important to me to keep my toe nails as short as possible and my fingernails filed at all times. I have long fingernails so I soak them and file them on a Sunday to get rid of any nicks or chips that I may not have fixed during the week. I also believe a well groomed man keeps his nails short. 

Shampoo & Deep Conditioning

I shampoo my hair once or sometimes twice a week. If I shampoo during the week I usually only leave my conditioner in for a few minutes then rinse but on Sundays I go all out. I apply my conditioner and put on a shower cap first and usually sit under my heat cap for about an hour. I rinse and apply my carrot and coconut oil to my ends, brush the ends out and add a dime-sized amount of some argan oil or almond oil to my entire head (I have long hair so use an amount that suits your hair length, but you don't want to be all greasy and whatnot).

Consume something sweet

This is a new part of the routine as I'm trying not to ingest the absurd amounts of sugar I usually do. I have sacrificed drinking Coca-Cola since my return from Toronto and I intend to give it up permanently. The hardest thing I've ever had to do in my life. No, really.

I indulged in a lot of cake in the last 2 weeks (2 back-to-back birthdays) so I'm getting more diligent about my sugar reduction now. I intend to limit myself to a sugary treat every Sunday evening with my tea but keep my sugar intake low during the week. I'm still doing more research on the many ways too much sugar affects our bodies but basically - it's sweet destruction.

Have a great Sunday!



4 April 2012

New Music: Steve Aoki feat. Kid Cudi & Travis Barker - Cudi The Kid

Kid Cudi is continuing on his rock rager trend on this track with Steve Aoki and Travis Barker. This is more of a rager meets dubstep but I really like it and also appreciate the artistic concept of the video. It reminds me of dreams I've had and I have an extra inclination to like the song because I love the video (am I the only one that happens to by the way?).

This feels like a continuation of 'WZRD' which Cudi dropped in February with producer and friend Dot Da Genius. The album was very rockstar and featured the rapper doing more of his new favourite thing - singing (as he does on this track with Aoki). A lot people essentially said, "get back to rapping." Cudi fans however went out and got the album and fully endorsed his new sound because after all, it's Cudi, he's a talented and creative guy and it's always interesting to see what his new music will consist of. I appreciate when my favourite artistes try new sounds, it says to me that they aren't stuck, that they're willing to try new things and step out of their comfort zone. Musical evolution and exploration - I see nothing wrong with that. Don't we all have to try new things at some point in our lives to avoid a rotting existence?

Learn more about WZRD here and check out the new video below.



New Music: Rita Ora feat. Tinie Tempah - R.I.P.

Brit songstress Rita Ora, who made her US debut earlier this year with 'How We Do', is back again with 'R.I.P.' The ROC's new female artist is flaunting a very Rihanna-like style in the video, accompanying what I find to be very blasé vocals. Tinie Tempah's verse saved the song for me but this is not one I'll be listening to in my spare time. It leaves me wondering if with all the controversy surrounding Rihanna and Chris Brown collaborating, allegedly against Jay-Z's wishes, Rita Ora is now being prepped as her replacement. I doubt I'm alone on this but the way she fluctuates her tone is very much like what Rihanna is known for.

Now, I say all this not because I'm one of those people who love to compare a new artist to an established one, but because it's plain as day for me to come to these conclusions. This is not comparable to when Rihanna first came out and everyone was comparing her to Beyonce. They don't even have the same sound nor did they have the same look at the time (aside from hair colour). People just LOVE to do that whole compare and contrast to stir unnecessary drama/beef/whatever you want to call it. With Rita and Rihanna though I think after watching the video you'll be able to understand why the comparison is so evident.

Here are some stills from the video:

And here's the video:

Let's just say it's a good thing Rihanna's back to black.



29 March 2012

Rosie Huntington-Whiteley for Vogue Brazil April 2012

Yet another Transformers star snags the cover of a magazine. This time it's the gorgeous Brit Rosie Huntington-Whiteley for Vogue Brazil! On the April cover Rosie wears a beautiful retro-looking outfit from Animale's Fall 2012 Collection and is photographed by Henrique Gendre.

In case you missed it, Rosie walked the runway for Animale in Sao Paulo for the Fall 2012 show (looking every bit like a bronze Brazilian actually) which was one of her first runway appearances since her Victoria Secret days. She's put all that to the side now to focus on becoming an actress. You know, a real one.

She looks so fierce, literally, her face says it all.