Style Icons: Male »Peter Lindbergh

Master Photographer

No photographer working, it could be argued, touches Peter Lindbergh when it come to black and white.

He turns gorgeous women into icons. Most of his images are now legendary, recognizable even to those not with little interest in fashion magazines.

I love him best though when he goes wildly cinematic and dramatic. Mixing alien crashes with supermodels, refashioning The Birds with a more sinister eye, and ingeniously recasting Lolita with an early 1990’s Milla Jovovich and Harry Dean Stanton – these are the kinds of editorial spreads that leave a mark on ones brain.

 

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Posted on September 13, 2011

Style Icons: Male »The Cars

New Wave Icons

Not only are The Cars dynamic performers who blew my young mind with their wild videos and catchy songs, but, man! these guys could dress.

No outlandish men’s jacket ever found a better home than resting on their tall rock star shoulders. (Seriously, have you seen so many good but weird jackets in one place?) Fearless, they donned pleather, satin, leopard print, and suspenders.

On a side note, I amazes me that these guys were younger than I am now when their hot first album was released. Everywhere I look, there are signs that I am getting older…

 

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Posted on August 24, 2011

Style Icons: Male »Tom Palumbo

Photographer

As today’s weepy weather reminds us – everything is fleeting – including the fun days of summer.

Sure we have about a month more of it, but if you haven’t taken time to go to the beach, don a bathing suit or lounge in the sun, these gorgeous Tom Palumbo images will inspire you to snap to it and do so asap.

While his work was versatile, as a staff photographer at Vogue then Bazaar, Palumbo created indelible images of ideal summertime bliss.

Often photographing the great Jean Patchett and Anne Saint Marie, he caught moments of seaside frolicking that feel both exquisitely fashionable and quietly personal.

He taught for a time at my alma mater, RISD and was also an accomplished stage director.

His website features great galleries to peruse and some of my favorites from him are below and after the jump.

Click here for the rest of Tom Palumbo

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Posted on August 14, 2011

Style Icons: Male »Lucian Freud

Painter

You always remember the first time seeing a Lucian Freud, it’s just so… shocking and it’s rare that anything has that power anymore.

So tactile, unabashed and grotesque, his portraits are as strangely beautiful as they are frightening but simply depict a realistic,unflattering, and intense glimpse at the human form.

Grandson to Sigmund Freud, Lucian was considered Britain’s finest artists and he passed away this week at the age of 88.

An interesting history of his work and life can be read here.

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Posted on July 22, 2011

Style Icons: Female,Style Icons: Male »Best of Couture

Oh Givenchy, you make me so very happy. Poodle ladies by the river… it doesn’t sound glamorous, but the photo speaks for itself.

Chanel hasn’t been my favorite lately, but this collection had so many awesome looks I had a hard time picking. I went with this all black number that made me think of Isabelle Adjani in the mid 1980’s.

Because I’ve never forgiven the Halle Berry monstrosity that everyone was shitting themselves over, Elie Saab has never been a favorite. But there’s no denying there were some exquisite gowns this collection such as this one seems to float on the model even as it’s elaborately embellished.

Frankly, I liked Giambattista Valli’s resort collection more, this over the top finale is pretty grand.

Not totally sure how I feel about Dior, it calls to mind Lacroix of the late 80’s but with different silhouettes and less shiny stuff. This look is pretty great though.

Now, usually when I see an Armani show, I prepare myself for 800 looks all in slate grey, mostly pant suits, but I was surprised with the Japanese inspired collection and found a lot of the quirky looks very nice.

Azzedine Alaïa gave us some great shapes with his collection like this narrow waist feathered jacket.

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Posted on July 20, 2011

Style Icons: Female,Style Icons: Male »Best of Resort Part IV

So resort seems  to be an amorphous season, with new shows arriving all the time. So if you thought it was over, like I did, think again! Here are my favorites from the later comers.

Starting with Marni who does great things with proportion and pattern with this modern belted dress which is so, so adorable I can barely stand it.

Balmain was also exciting with print and was pretty much stunning over all. This tribal, futuristic mini is mind blowing.

Carven is officially one of the shows I will wait for with baited breath. This vintage inspired lemon suit is darling and one of many outstanding looks I had to select from.

DSquared, not usually my thing, but I really adore these Pepto-Bismol wide legs. Paring with a denim shirt is clean and cute. Of course, in real life, on me, these would look a bit different (ie awful) but it’s genius on her.

Not my favorite Viktor and Rolf show, though I love the illusion created by the giant wainscoting that the models were mere inches tall, but this bra top maxi combo is amazing. What I would want to wear to a beach soiree with millionaires.

There was lots of good stuff at Cynthia Rowley (but not the consistent dum-dum scowl on all the models) like this pretty dress in a unique royal and mud color combo. Love that bright orange heels are paired with it.

Antonio Marras definitely has a sense of humor and this all pattern ensemble expresses it while still being weirdly wearable. Makes me want to go extreme matchy matchy this summer.

Well, I hate to say it, because I agreed with Dior’s decision to can Galliano, but didn’t some of this resort collection feel, well… moderate? Not so when it comes to this embellished gown though, which is stunning and elegant which retaining a loose casual edginess with it’s unstructured silhouette.

Francesco Scognamiglio is a new name to me but one I’ll be watching. Some looks felt awkward, but the over all vision of his neon, 1980’s by way of the future collection was stellar. And, good gods, those shoes!!

Mugler is a pale shadow of the former glory, but I do dig this creepy hands mini dress. Someone tell Alek to smile because she looks rad.

Marios Schwab offered a most beautiful and strange under sea print. Grounded in black, it makes you feel like you’re floating in the deepest ocean and it looks best in this draped mini skirt.

Everyone has their quirks. For me, I’m almost universally unkind to shiny fabrics, it just looks cheap to me but, there are always exceptions and this Giles black number is one of them. I love the strong origami shape.

 

What’s there to say? While some of the latest from Christopher Kane looked a little bit like he was having a laugh, this hombre rainbow sweater is great.

I love when classics get turned upside down and Antonio Berardi does well goofing around with the old lady Chanel jacket.

While it saddens me that the true inventive genius of Alexander McQueen is forever gone, the house has carried on his legacy beautifully. This lace skirt and edgy overcoat was one of my favorites.

Temperley was just lovely. There were more casual frocks I pine for, but as most shows end on a wedding dress, so will I. This one strikes a perfect balance of classic prettiness and modern, offbeat style. One of their best collections to date.

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Posted on July 12, 2011

Style Icons: Female,Style Icons: Male »Best of Resort, The Rest

Style Icons: Female,Style Icons: Male »Best of Resort, Part III

BCBG gave us flowing dresses that one could wear all summer. In fact, if there were one collection I could (realistically) solely wear this season, these 70’s inspired frocks would do the job. BCBG may never got over it’s cheapie reputation but I loved this collection.

And speaking of cheapie reps – I think it’s tacky Azria had to put his name on Leger (kind of reminds me of Dean Koontz’ Frankenstein, ha ha) but this body con graffiti number is downright awesome.

Bibhu Mohaptra does great things in this dress – a fab print, a flattering yet unique silhouette, and unexpected colors that feel fresh. There’s a lot to love here.

Another stand out print from Gucci with this fun dress that screams Jacqueline Susann heroine (and we all know that’s a wonderful thing).

Evening wear was everywhere but I was drawn to the played down options, like this color blocked Vionnet dress. Seems they’re revitalizing the line with a particular eye for unusual color combinations and I like it!

Lela Rose, usually a little too saccharine for me hit the right note this season. This dress is flirty, pretty, and so easy with those oxford flats.

Lanvin continues to wow and this bungle of red hearts, feathers, embellishment, and who knows what is the wowiest…

Until you learn that Lanvin for kids exists.

Sometimes just the most basic thing done right is a sight to behold, so behold this cape from DKNY. It’s simple, it’s clean, I want.

Doo.Ri gives us the trench coat to aspire to while making lace leggings look neither slutty nor cheap.

I love that Proenza Schouler’s collection reminded me of yarn art (though not sure why it all took place on the set of 48 Hours Mystery with Maureen Maher) but if I had to chose one look, this white dress with the most fantastic of huge necklaces is the one. I don’t even know what the necklace is made of what it really looks like but I can just feel that it is amazing.

Also amazing in the accessories department? The huge belt loop and nude leather gloves at Celine. Having these would change me life. (Be sure to see the collection for other notable looks, like one sweet print that will be in the fashion mags soon).

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Posted on June 28, 2011

Style Icons: Male »Peter Falk

Columbo

I was sad to hear that Peter Falk had passed away and even sadder to hear that he spent his last years battling dementia and Alzheimer’s.

He was world famous for his role as Columbo, but his career consisted of much more than that iconic role.

He’s breathtaking in Cassavetes, he’s charming and touching as a former angel in Wings of Desire and who can forget his narration in The Princess Bride?

He left an indelible legacy with wit, charisma, and talent.

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Posted on June 24, 2011

Style Icons: Female,Style Icons: Male »Best of Resort, Part II

Skirts really got the royal treatment, most impressively with this amazing Matthew Williamson embellished number from an over all wonderful Asian inspired collection. Pairing with a button down shirt is in line with with prim and proper trend of the season.

No. 21 gives us another lovely knee length skirt that is both casual with its pockets and loose fit but textured with fancy lace making it equally at home at the soiree of your choice. This look also comes from a great overall collection worth taking a look at for other sartorial inspiration.

Marc Jacobs juxtaposes the slate grey that permeated his collection with this fun, airy hot pink skirt that I am sure we will be seeing in the pages of the magazines to come. Again, the hi lo mixing is so much fun. I hope this trend of dramatic skirts that can be dressed up or be worn down trickles down to H&M, etc. This is one wardrobe piece I’d love to find.

A skirt of a different note is this bumblebee pencil from Burberry (yet another great collection) that manages to evoke the 1960’s while looking totally modern. Love the high waist and the bold colors and would not say no to that trench next door as a perfect walking-in-the-meadows-on-a-summer-day-after-the-rain look. Though it would probably look just as chic for a rushing-to-get-home-after-coming-out-of-the-subway-to-find-it-raining-and-I-have-no-umbrella-look that we all tend to sport one time or another.

Wearable dresses. There were lots of them and it made me very happy. We’ll start with Anna Sui, whose over styling and sometimes cartoonish looks feel dated but within this collection we find this awesome, print mixed cotton dress. I’d wear this pretty much constantly if I were able. The subdued colors are perfect and it’s effortlessly chic. Love it

Speaking of love, Rebecca Taylor does wonderful things with color with this look. It’s prairie (a trend that got a huge exclamation point on it from Rodarte’s last collection) meets the big city with the pops of brights against grey. I have nothing in these colors but will be on the look out to remedy that fact.

Chloe highlighted the wearabilty of the collection by presenting the looks in a street style photo shoot. This mint green pleated dress is just simple and gorgeous. Looks interesting anchored by those pretty fabulous buckle heels but I can see myself in something like this, barefoot for a beach wedding (now I just need to find a beach wedding to crash).

Jason Wu’s collection made me think of The Lover, a forbidden romance set in 1929 Vietnam (doesn’t everyone seem to be drawing inspiration from Southeast Asia? and doesn’t it feel perfect?). This lovely dress, paired ingeniously with that world traveler hat (ok – so I know the next hat I need to find – but anyone know what a hat like this would be called?) is so pretty and I just have to mention, speaking of pretty, robin’s egg and white wainscoting, sigh.

Dresses weren’t just pretty though. Stuff got edgy and unusual. I particularly love this hippie meets the future dress from Peter Pilotto – the print, the shape, the neckline details, everything about it is unique and awesome.

Balenciaga played with shape too and it looks radical with this sharp shoulder low waist dress that also features a trend I haven’t mentioned but still love – hints of animal prints on solids. Look around, you’ll be seeing it everywhere.

Roksanda Ilincic’s collection was sweet. She channeled the 1940’s and offered the looks of that era in an entirely new light. This bright green color block dress was one of my favorites, and of course, you know I love my turbans.

I am pro dress over pants. I know, I know, it seems like it should never work, but this look from Acne helps my side of the argument.

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Posted on June 23, 2011

Style Icons: Female,Style Icons: Male »Best of Resort, Part I

I love stripes for summer, it’s a logical choice and this Thakoon Addition look perfectly encapsulates the current Summer mood with just the right amout of them along with bleached denim, florals, and youth.

John Patrick also shows off a perfectly balanced and very simple outfit that makes one wish for more rain and an excuse to wear galoshes.

Mulberry goes less traditional with the stripes in a Bert and Ernie golden navy combo and makes a chic school girl charm that isn’t cheap or too young. Again, bleached denim- how do you suddenly look so fresh and cool?

Back to the French tradition with navy and white and red and white stripes with Sonia Rykiel, who has made a name doing stripes right. This resort season is no different as you can tell from these cheerful, slightly quirky ensembles that would be ideal for a walk along the Seine, and if that’s not possible, how about a walk to the new East River Ferry?

Yay Stripes!

Another trend was the bold, busy printed dress in unexpected silhouettes. My favorite coming from Preen who gave a moody, languid collection that was fashionable Japanese lady marooned by a lover in Southeast Asia. I love the sexy, tightly belted waist juxtaposed with the proper buttoned up neckline.

Suno, ever having fun with prints, offered this adorable Hawaiian printed mini that also manages to be short and fun for Summer but respectfully covered up up top. I’d love to go flea market shopping in something like this. They also featured some looks of plaid and floral mixed together, something I’ve been super into for Falls past, but loved seeing in a warm weather way.

Marc by Marc is of course on target with this flattering mini dress in just the sunniest, cutest of prints. The black piping is key. This row of dresses is really making me itch for my vacation, what about you?

And if that vacation were to Polynesia (it isn’t) I’d love to bring along this flower Peter Som dress so I would just fade into my beautiful surroundings.

Long, floor dusting gowns were tops for evening and none were as awesome as this animal print atop animal print Giambattista Valli number. Love the prints and the belted yet unstructured silhouette.

Erdem offered more of their artistic prints and they looked the most stunning in this cap sleeve maxi. Wear this if you want to look like a captivating painting.

Givenchy’s wild mirrored prints are likely to get into the editorial pages, but I was really taken by this strangely beautiful origami black on black.

Yellow was huge, tons of people featured the sunshine color in their collections, but this Jenni Kayne gown stuck out to me with its simple and unique sophistication.

Lots of Resort to review, so more favorites coming soon!!

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Posted on June 20, 2011

Style Icons: Male »Clarence Clemons

E Street Sax Man

I was very sad to hear of Clarence Clemons’ passing. Known as The Big Man, he was a philanthropist, a father, and an amazing entertainer.

Most notably he was the saxophonist for The E Street Band, and it’s rare that I’ll say saxophone makes things better, but Clarence could.

As one of the few of my generation that counts herself a (non-ironic) Springsteen fan, I was lucky enough to see him perform live. It was sweet. Clemons was vibrant.

He will be missed.

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Posted on June 20, 2011

Style Icons: Male »Gary Numan

Iconic Electronic Rocker

Half grumpy nerd, half stoic rock star, Gary Numan makes one unusual celebrity.

With double breasted suits, pleather jumpers, and later snow white hair he classifies as a style icon of the traditional sense, and hints of his style can be seen in The Talking Heads, Devo, and even Eddie Murphy (rent Delirious if you don’t believe me).

But he is most notably an inventive pioneer whose catchy electronica from another planet infinitely inspired the music landscape.

I am a big fan and in some strange moods only Telekon will do.

Nowadays, he looks better than some aging rock stars but seems to have thrown away the android Gary for a new Gary that screams like Trent Reznor by way of Leland Palmer.

He still tours (look out for dates this year) and a few years back performed the entire Replicas album live, which would have been super awesome to see.

Other awesome things about Numan? Well, he cameoed in the Mighty Boosh, he is openly atheist, he was diagnosed with Aspergers and proves that success is possible with the disorder, and he married a fan club member (giving hope to fans everywhere that the same could happen to them one day).

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Posted on June 9, 2011

Style Icons: Male »Sylvester

Queen of Disco

Even today many celebrities are afraid to live out and proud. That Sylvester was dressing in drag and flaunting the title of Queen of Disco in a far less tolerant era is amazing and admirable.

He’s probably best known for his hit “You Make Me Feel (Mighty Real)” but I found out more about him as a one time member of the off the wall fabulous performance group The Cockettes.

Beginning his career as a costume designer, he knew about style From head to toe and he made everything – from bangles to flapper dresses his own.

He sadly died of complications from AIDS during the early years of the epidemic. A documentary based on his life is in the works.

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Posted on May 31, 2011

Style Icons: Male »Randy Savage

Wrestling Superstar

Randy Savage aka Macho Man was an American icon. His recent death came as a shock. Most everyone of a certain age, wrestling fan or not, knows him as the Snap into a Slim Jim guy in the series of commercials that are nostalgically awesome – “Are’t thou bored?!

It was his flamboyant, insane WWF persona however that made him a star. If you missed his antics the first time around, now is a great time to catch up on the world of Macho Man. A simple youtube search will reveal all sorts of gems.

Only in the world of wrestling can you find the drama of over the top acting, the amazement of incredible physical feats, and the pizazz of out of this world costumes (and let’s be honest, the jackets Macho Man is sporting? They’d sell for a ridiculous amounts at Opening Ceremony today). Randy Savage was a master of the all the theatrics.

So put on Pomp and Circumstance and raise a glass to a unique icon that will be missed.

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Posted on May 21, 2011

Style Icons: Male »Oskar Schlemmer

German Artist

I stumbled across an image of the Oskar Schlemmer Triadisches Ballet and was instantly enamoured of and curious about this multi talented Bauhaus artist. He lent his inventive eye to not only choreography and stunning costumes but painting and sculpture as well.

Be sure to take a look at the Ballet, which is in three parts: Amarillo, Rosa and Negra. It’s one of the strangest and neatest ballets you’re likely to see.

Click here for the rest of Oskar Schlemmer

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Posted on May 6, 2011

Style Icons: Male »Philip Treacy

Milliner Extraordinaire

With rumors circling that he is commissioned to create Kate Middleton’s wedding head piece and an upcoming Met Retrospective of his long time collaborator, Alexander McQueen, it’s just a Philip Treacy kind of year.

Taking a look through Treacy’s career, anyone could get excited about millinery arts. I am particularly hat crazy with the changing of the season and subsequent changing of head gear.

So long wool turban and floppy brimmed tweed – hello bright wide brimmed sun hats. What I wouldn’t do for some outrageous Treacy creation. His work is inventive, imaginative, daring and humorous.

The sadly departed Isabella Blow discovered the deisgner (as well as McQueen) and often donned his wildest hats including the famous feathered “Blow” head piece.

Other famous fans include Lady Gaga. SJP, Naomi Campbell and of course the soon to be British Princess.

His headpiece and her dress are the only reason I am excited to see the wedding tomorrow (though not enough to wake up at 4am).

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Posted on April 28, 2011