“Power dressing” is often a direct nod to the well-known 80s trend that encompassed business suits and sharp shoulder pads worn by women. This week however, Reinvent changes how you might view this idea by taking fashion cues from people who have influenced today’s kids at one point in their lives. These powerful women are a symbol of resiliency and self-awareness, and as such held dominion over their own lives in their own ways.
I am obsessed with collars. It all started when Miu Miu, back in its Spring 2010 collection, released these très chic collars with prints of birds, dogs, and cats on them. But really, my love was all heightened when the coolest girl alive - Tavi Gevinson - started wearing them. The beautiful part of collars is that they add impact to one's clothing in the subtlest of ways. Here's a look through some significant collars throughout history as seen through the lenses of the contemporary fashion scene!
*none of these photos are owned by Reinvent; click photo for source
book source: Tortora, P., Eubank, K. (1994). Survey of historic costume. New York: Fairchild Publications.
I’ve always thought that manuals and articles on “dressing your age” are not cool. I don’t like how they are so limiting of the choices of clothing one can wear and it gives a false justification of what a person of a certain age should look. Thankfully, we now live in an age where there are people who care less about prevailing “fashion rules” that almost every publication purposively impose on our minds. We are F R E E (although, we have to admit not entirely) to wear whatever we want! Today, there are a growing number of people who think independently with regards to the clothes they wear for the main purpose of pursuing their personalities. This week we discuss the ~cool~ trend of kids wearing their grandmas’ clothing, and grandmas wearing their kids’ clothing.
Let us start with the quintessential example of the age-defying, millennial granny Baddiewinkle (real name: Helen Van Winkle). Known for her youthful play on dressing, the face of Dimepiece has about 1.6 million followers on Instagram. She’s also had photos with Nicole Richie, has spoken on the phone with Drake, and has promoted the MTV VMA’s with Miley Cyrus. In an interview she had for Refinery 29, she described her style as “keeping up with the times”. More than that, Baddiewinkle’s way of dressing has always been an avenue for her to cope up with the difficulties of life. She has always been brave in doing the things she loves without regard for other people’s opinions on what old should look like. She does so whether in her famous tie-dye shirts or in her kanye-eating- ice cream sweatshirt.
Several fashion campaigns by big brands have also featured mature women. There was Joan Didion for Celine, Cher for Marc Jacobs, and Linda Rodin for the Row.
On the other spectrum, kids are crossing age borders by dressing beyond their years. At the beginning of 2015, a lot of celebrities, including Rihanna, Ginnifer Goodwin, Kylie Jenner, and Zosia Mamet have dyed their hair grey. Marga Esquivel, an up and coming Filipino model in the international fashion arena, has been sporting this shade for quite some time. She has even been dubbed by Vogue.com as the model with “scene-stealing hair at Gucci Resort.” The 11 year old Tavi Gevinson is the most classic example of this phenomenon. In 2008, all of fashion looked towards the style prodigy as she wore the chunkiest of sweaters and the thickest of glasses. The industry’s fascination of Tavi grew out of her inclination towards clothes that drove away from her youth when everyone else wanted to look their youngest.
Style knows no age and knows no boundaries. If you want to wear anything, JUST DO IT!
Great minds think alike and when it comes to the fashion world, two designers creatively working together may produce some of the best and most eclectic pieces to date. Meet some of our favorite designer duos:
Kate and Laura Mulleavy of Rodarte
Despite not graduating with a degree in fashion, Kate and Laura have been reigning in the fashion scene for quite a time now. (Kate graduated with a degree in art history while Laura majored in English literature. ) The sisters are known for reinventing classic silhouettes. For instance, the designers have utilized meticulous fabrics fashioned with touches of Van Gogh (as seen on its Spring 2012 collection). 2005 was the year the sisters took their chance in the fashion by flying from California to New York bringing with them only 10 finished pieces. Shortly thereafter, their work was featured on the cover of Women’s Wear Daily. What sets them apart from other designers out there is their ability to confer a sense of toughness to their designs – one that is neither affirming of snobbishness or detachment, but of a sense of empowerment. This is a reason why cool girls Tavi Gevinson, Elle Fanning, and Kirsten Dunst are huge fans of the brand.
Rodarte was named after the maiden name of the duo’s mother.
Viktor Horsting and Rolf Snoeren of Viktor and Rolf
Call them the reincarnation of the great Dali if you will, Viktor Horsting and Rolf Snoeren are unmistakably the most talented surrealists in the fashion industry. The Dutch designers graduated from Netherland’s Arnhem Academy of Art Design in 1922, and they have since then opened up the world of the imaginary. Collections on Knight’s armor, on elegant tulle dresses with huge holes on them, or the pillow dress have been seen on the runway. Their most recent couture collection is arguably their best when the two attempted to address the need to consider fashion as a significant art form. Whether their attempt may be successful or not to one’s opinion, one thing’s for sure – they make quite an impression.
Jack McCollough and Lazaro Hernandez of Proenza Schouler
Years before Proenza Schouler has become the Proenza Schouler, Lazaro Hernandez sent a note to Anna Wintour when the former knew he was riding in the same flight as her. What a sweet sort of serendipity it is as one can only ponder at how massively acclaimed the brand is today, not only to the eyes of the great Anna. Proenza Schouler is yet another brand named after the maiden name of the designers’ mothers. The brand has constantly shuddered fashion experts with their expert skills in tailoring and in the understanding of the human silhouettes. Many critics have heralded their graduate collection from Parsons as one done by designers years into the business, not ones by students. If you still don’t feel convinced at their prowess in clothing: Here’s what Nicole Phelps (Style.com) said on their Fall 2015 collection
“The designers' work over the last few years has felt very process-oriented, you can see the hand in the clothes…”
Maria Grazia Chiuri and Pierpaolo Piccioli
When a big name such as Valentino Garavani has just left the position of creative director of an influential brand, it is hard to find someone to maintain the success of such a brilliant artist. Lucky for the people in Valentino, they found not one but two cool people to keep the spirit of effortless glamour exuded by the brand. Pierpaolo Piccioli and . Maria Grazia Chiuri both came from the Instituto Europeo di Design of Rome and first started their adventures with brand in its accessories department. A distinct trait of the two is their excellent ability in enhancing the female body while maintaining the image Garavani has established for the brand years before. One can see how multi-faceted yet cohesive Valentino collections have become since they started, and this says a lot about how they are a perfect fit for the brand.
Marta Marques and Paulo Almeida of Marques’ Almeida
If you’ve been wondering where all the hullabaloo on shredded denim has been coming from, blame the most recent winners of the LVMH. Marta Marques and Paulo Almeida braced and faced the judgments of Karl Lagerfeld, Phoebe Philo (of Celine), Raf Simons (former creative director of Dior) , Riccardo Tisci (Creative director of Givenchy), Marc Jacobs, Jonathan Anderson, and more. The two met while studying in a fashion school at Portugal, but it was only when they started studying Fashion MA in Central Saint Martins did they establish their duo. The brand is known for their tasteful deconstruction of fabrics and meticulously distressed clothing. Their aesthetic is praised by the whole industry and the two have received numerous recognitions from many publications. Marques’ Almeida is definitely a brand to watch out for.
To wit, it wouldn’t be a novel thing for us to see people in important events wearing the famed baro’t sayas, luxuriously beaded and designed to perfection. Oftentimes, we’d see these people bearing the country’s face proud and strong, hence one would get a sense of patriotism and of respect for the country. Conversely, there would be people who would use traditional costumes as a means for profit without understanding the long history that such pieces of costumes have gone though. Some would go as far as to debase relics of cultures to objects for humor and wit.
I think what I’m trying to say here is that modernizing traditional Filipino costumes is not entirely bad. Given our access to information today and our tendency to embrace ethnic cultures new to us, it can’t be helped that there may be times we begin to feel influenced by its unfamiliarity. This unfamiliarity comes as a double edged sword when we think that it is okay to use traditional pieces as commodities for fashion. We shouldn’t feel entitled to use any costume piece without first understanding its history and in turn RESPECTING the culture and the people from where you take your costume pieces from. It is not cool or hip to walk around places wearing the barong tagalog, for instance and don it like a huge fashion banner. When we take pieces from cultural groups in the Philippines, we have to understand its usage so as not disrespect or exploit the group involved.
“To appreciate a culture is to be respectful of the culture as a whole, including the people who belong to it. Learn about them” (Isis Evangelista on Cultural Appropriation) found here
Modernising traditional Filipino costumes, really all boils down to one important principle, and that is respect. To be a true makabayan, one has to be aware with the Filipino’s long fight with cultural misrepresentation and debasement by taking part in concrete ways that would honor the history of the Philippines and the state of its people. Always remember: one’s culture is not (and should never be) another man’s fashion trend.
- ✿ Bea Ticsay ✿
click photo for source
This week, Reinvent reintroduces four women in history, who like the Merveilleuses, changed perceptions on beauty and dressing.
This is where the magic of 3-D printing comes in. The age of having to daze over owning that dreamy blue coat you saw from Vogue the other day might end, as future advancements in technology will soon allow you to have that blue coat printed in an instant. 3-D printing is the capacity to create 3-dimensional materials from a digital file. Through a method called the “addictive process”, layers and layers of materials are added on top of each other so that the final product is shaped and created to the way it was designed to be.
3-D Printing, in perspective, is a both a haunting yet a wonderful thing. But if it makes you feel something, Dhani Mau, writer to Fashionista.com says that “we're not close to wearing 3-D printed clothes yet.” Moreover, Beth Altringer (researcher at Harvard) says that “Until we can actually print in comfortable, breathable fabrics, it will remain a pretty far off concept. I think we have plenty of time to think about these things and how it would work before this is actually really a mainstream thing.” Despite the predictions that the accessibility of this printing form will not be available to the masses, there are existing designers who use this process not only to diversify their outlets of expression, but to also help in its advancement.
Designers like Iris Van Hepren (who is, truly, an exceptional visionary) among many other designers are creating a foothold in fashion 3-D printing. (his designs are shown below)
3-D printing is the future of fashion. We just hope that this phenomenal creation will someday end up being used like the happy journeys of Rudy Tabootie and not like SpongeBob’s evil doodle.
In the age of globalization we tend to have a marked interest to reach out to world, to take ourselves to see the tales and discoveries of those from faraway lands. We look beyond and we look far. However; what we don’t understand is that sometimes, we overlook those placed right in front of our eyes. We tend to miss the tales of our own country and our countrymen.
There is brewing talent in the islands we call home. Yes! The Philippines is a melting pot of diverse ideas and many talented game changers in the field of design and aesthetics are evolving the way we view technique and talent in the arts. Reinvent introduces you to three designers bringing the Philippine fashion game to a completely new level as they prove that sometimes you don’t have to go far and out of our lands to recognize what is beyond.
Cary grew up under wing of a mother who knew how to sew. As he immersed himself to the work of his mom, he developed the skills necessary to create clothes. At 15 he was already sketching for an RTW brand in his hometown Cebu, and at 18 has started sketching and designing clothes earning P1500 a week. He was trained under Leonardo Ingloria, a famous fashion designer in Cebu.
His opportunity to work in Dubai was an instrumental part of his career. After having met an Iraqui couple who were initially looking for a cutter, Cary Santiago impressed the couple with his sketches and designs. And so from his small house slash shop, he rose to became the head designer of the couture house he was working for.
Cary Santiago’s Philippine Spring Summer 2013 collection is certainly one of the best collections that have ever been presented on Philippine Fashion week. All origami-inspired, the dresses were phenomenally classic yet eccentric in aura. His impeccable taste in style and his impressive capabilities in creating architectural silhouettes serve as a groundbreaking proof of his incredible talent that is truly filipino.
Jerome Salaya Ang
Haunting doesn’t even begin to describe Jerome Salaya Ang’s Holiday 2012 campaign. However; to the extent that his campaign showed horror as the title “Skin, Sin & Bones” explains, his clothes were anything but. Clad in decadent fabrics, rich beading, and ornate prints in somber hues, the models were muses bathing in frailty, delicateness and the lavish darkness.
Fast Forward to his latest collection: His Spring Summer 2015 collection entitles “Girl in water: A Siren’s Urban Lullaby” redefined Urban Glamour as a sea of solid colored outerwear, dresses and goggles (yes goggles) opened the eyes of the audience. Mesh fabrics were juxtaposed with solid and printed fabrics, and the intermingling of these two different styles were able to make exceptional looks that seem to work perfectly. Jerome Salaya Ang approaches his aesthetics with a cool, avant-garde perspective – which makes his shows always one for the books.
“It’s more than the fashion show, the party, the glam. It all seems effortless and glamorous, but the fact is, it’s all about hard work and ideas. We sell an escape, a lot of fashion is about illusion. My worry is that we are inspiring young people to do fashion because they think we’re elitist, special and glossy and the truth is that we’re dirty and it’s hard work.”
-from "Lesley Mobo: ‘More than just fashion shows and glamor, life in London is all about hard work’" article by Millet M. Mananquil (The Philippine Star)
When John Galliano was still a student at the prestigious design school named Central Saint Martins, he spent most of his time in the library sketching. Galliano has always been known for his fantastical designs and his shows are always surreal odysseys to far away places and hopeful time-travels to the past. He is no stranger to historical costumes either, as his designs are theatrical in nature and are often inspired by clothing of past centuries. His Spring 2004 couture collection for instance was a clear lift from ancient Egyptian clothing.
Romans in ancient Rome are famous for their political exploits and they often reached their accomplishments while donning their distinguished Togas. Don't be fooled by the name, for ancient Roman togas do not look like those you wear during graduation. Ancient Roman Togas are 18 feet long and semi circular in shape. Note that togas were not sewn into patterns, therefore it took great skill to drape the toga such that it can be properly worn by the Roman citizen and kept clean from the ground. Goga Ashkenazi for Vionnet (spring 2014) may have been inspired by this ancient civilisation by incorporating the idea of toga-draping to the way the strands were placed on the tailored top or on the base dress.
The Byzantine Period was a period marked by the meeting of Eastern and Western cultures. This period was special for it did not only give birth to a new sense of approaching aesthetics but also preserved the antique ideals of the Greek and Roman cultures. Centered at Constantinople, the blending of various cultures produced beautiful illuminated manuscripts, and Christian themed mosaics. Dolce and Gabbana's Fall 2013 collection was one that used its dresses as a canvas for Byzantine-like mosaics, and its crowns and jewellery to depict the grandeur of the empire's rulers.
A little after the Byzantine era was the 14th and 15th Middle Ages. During the time, the social structure consisted of the nobility, the bourgeoisie, and the peasants. It was also around this time that bizarre beauty standards (at least in the eyes of a 21st century person) came to be. High, broad looking foreheads were all the rage. This weird standard resulted in the plucking of hair around this area, including the eyebrows. Cool looking shoes called Poulaines, which were extremely elongated pointed shoes, were deemed fashionable. These shoes were hard to walk in. Hence, it made sense that wealthier men had longer Poulaines because their mode of living was one that did not require them to work and move around. Comme des Garcon made their own version for their Spring 2015 collection.
What do Queen Elizabeth, Madonna, and Cruella de Vill have in common? They're all bossy! But before you raise your eyebrow on this rather frank declaration, let us clear the table with the understanding that bossy in this context is not your older sister perpetually nagging you to do some of her chores, or the class know-it-all driving you down to ashes for being unskilled to her level. Bossy is a special term to describe someone who owns the power to manoeuvre their own choices while being grounded on their own personal principles. This is a term to describe a woman who takes charge of her life. Think, #GirlBoss or Bossypants.
Hence, here's Reinvent's take on staples of power dressing and why from here on out, you are to erase the stereotype that power dressing only comes in a Ms. Sara Bellum prototype.
STAPLES OF POWER DRESSING