Monday, November 8, 2010

A story about a unicorn.

A Story: Also known as Trenton the Unicorn’s story although it is more about Darren the prince.

In the middle of July a guy couldn’t remember what he was going to say when suddenly he thought of the most brilliant thing! “Ah ha!” He cried, with his index finger nearly poking the sky, “Unicorns do exist!!!” “But unfortunately they’re all gay!” “And so… They cannot reproduce and will eventually die out…” “Oh well, too bad.” He said with mock displeasure. Then a unicorn charged and speared him in the gut. Ouchies! A realization exploded upon the dying man’s mind, “They aren’t actually gay, just a little feminine.” As this thought flitted through the young man’s mind, the unicorn decided that he was pure of heart after all and with the healing powers of his horn, he saved the boy’s life. Newly rejuvenated, the boy leapt to his feet! Understanding flashed in his brown eyes. You see, as he was dying he realized what the one thing was that he had missed out on in life. He knew what he needed to do. Do you? He realized…. He needed to save a Damsel in Distress from a Dragon. Do note dear reader that the previous sentence has several words beginning with D! In fact, the boy’s name began with a D! Darren. So Darren set off through the forest of Scarib (pronounced Ska - reeb), the unicorn, whose name was Trenton, opted to join him. Trenton still felt a little bad about the whole stabbing ordeal. Darren, along with Trenton, fought his way through the forest to a cave where he found the Dragon, Ascarib (pronounced Ask-ka-reeb). The forest Scarib was named after the Dragon, Ascarib. Darren send Trenton into the cave first just in case. Trenton did sorta owe him one. Fortunately, Ascarib was not an evil Dragon; in fact, he liked baking and served them some delicious brownies after their introductions had been made. Unfortunately however, Ascarib didn’t have any Damsels for Darren to rescue. So Darren struck up a deal with Ascarib. If the Dragon would procure a Damsel in Distress, Darren, who was a prince, (You didn’t realize did you?) would set him up as the royal baker. He made very good brownies, you see. So Ascarib set off across the land to find the girl. He soared high above, his large wings cutting through clouds as he scouted his territory. Eventually he came to a small cottage floating in the middle of a lake. Technically it was a houseboat but Ascarib didn’t realize this, you can’t really blame him. He hadn’t ever seen one before… And sitting on the patio… Technically a deck but… Once again, Ascarib was a little dimwitted… of the cottage… houseboat… was a girl named Darlene. She was slender with wavy, red hair and green eyes. Ascarib swooped down and snatched her up in his enormous claws, but only after asking politely and promising not to tear her green dress. He then proceeded to back to the cave where he attempted an unsuccessful and fake fight against Darren who proceeded to marry Darlene and did fulfil his agreement with Ascarib. Ascarib was made the head baker for the royal household. And to cap it all off, Trenton eloped with a unicorn named Talicia; proving once and for all that he was not gay!

The official end!

Monday, October 11, 2010

Contrasting Fashions: The 1920s and the 1950s.

This was my compare and contrast paper for Defective Writing. Haha. Actually, I really enjoy that Effective Writing and, other than drawing, it is probably my favorite class.

Contrasting Fashions from the 1920s and the 1950s

Fashions in the 1920s and the 1950s were similar in one way only. They both came directly after a world war. Oddly enough, World War I and World War II affected fashion in nearly opposite ways. The First World War liberated women from the corset and brought them in to the world of men’s wear, while the Second World War ushered in the very feminine hourglass silhouette along with volumes of fabric.

During World War I women were asked to perform men’s work for the first time. As they adapted to these newfound tasks and opportunities, fashion adapted with them. Women needed practical clothing with simple designs. So Coco Chanel stepped up to the plate and started making tailored suits, known appropriately as the “Chanel Suit.” For functionality and freedom to move, the corset was eradicated, skirts were shortened about to knee length, and waistlines were dropped. After World War I ended the men returned and reclaimed their jobs, but women held onto their liberation in many ways, particularly the way they dressed. The women’s suffrage movement increased their freedom, and 1920s women’s fashion was known for its boyish and athletic qualities. Hair was cut short in “boyish bobs” and close-fitted Cloche hats were regularly worn. Designer Madeleine Vionnet became an architect of fashion during the ‘20s. Her technique of cutting garments from geometrically patterned fabric with a superb sense of construction brought about genuine innovations in dressmaking. She and Coco Chanel shaped the style of the time. Loose garments, drop-waists, and the iconic flapper dresses were the predominant clothing choices for women during this decade.

Contrary to the boyish styles of the twenties, the fifties were characterized by the very feminine hourglass silhouette. During World War II fabric was rationed so Parisian Haute Couture (high fashion) became nearly nonexistent. But when the war ended and rationing ceased, designers immediately picked up where they had left off. Christian Dior became the designer of the decade when he showed his 1947 collection, which became widely known as the “New Look.” His line ushered in the hourglass silhouette which other designers like Hubert de Givenchy, Cristobal Balenciaga, and Pierre Balmain quickly picked up. Instead of using as little fabric as possible, which had been necessary during the war, designers now used dozens of meters of fabric creating long, full skirts and luxurious, strapless “Prom Gowns.” Sweater sets and pencil skirts also became popular as women tried to create curvy figures. Cinched waists, emphasized busts, and rounded shoulders were all design details put into use for this purpose. Scarf-tied ponytails were one way women wore their hair, or they could mix it up with Pillbox hats. As opposed to the men’s wear inspired twenties, the fifties were a time for women to celebrate their femininity.

These two decades both followed devastating world wars, but even after these atrocities people were able to bounce back and start anew. In the twenties, women gained new freedoms in work and fashion, while in the fifties the feminine style was revitalized and renewed in a whole new way.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Fall Fashion Look 3 - Neo Geo

Sorry it has taken me so long to get this up here. The first two weeks of college kinda monopolized my time. This post probably will not be as long or as well laid out due to the fact that I have no time and there was just not as much material that I could find for this article. But here goes...

Neo Geo Clothing
At this point many of you are probably thinking, "What in the world is that?" So I have come up with my own little definition of Neo Geo: Neon colors and geometric shapes and patterns (Aztec patterns, futuristic patterns and shapes, color-blocking, bold, bright and going for the wow factor.)
This is kinda the antithesis of the Minimalist look which I introduced in Fall Fashion Look 1. describes the look this way:
"These graphic prints set in bright neon colors are reminiscent of the 'Fresh Prince' era and are sure to illicit awed and envious glances.... This versatile look can also go from beach to red carpet by merely layering a subdued cover-up jacket on top." and,
"This season, designers are taking on the look in a number of ways, with many taking the term 'geometry' quite literally and working wonders with basic elementary school shapes."

Teen Vogues suggests wearing the look this way:
"Take a basic sweatshirt light-years ahead with futuristic graphics and electric sneaks... a boxy shirt cuts a chic shape with a waist-cinching belt."

Two designers who have brought this look back in from the '80s and '90s are Balenciaga and Missoni, I am including a sampling of looks from their collections below:
Balenciaga Fall 2010 Above and below

Missoni Fall Resort 2010 Collection Below:
Accessories for the season follow in line with the neon geometric prints and shapes and the futuristic looks:
These shoes are from the Balenciaga Fall 2010 collection.
Below are shoes from various other designer collections.

Top left: Shoe from Missoni Fall Resort 2010
Top right: Shoe from FairyIrobin Fall 2010
Bottom left: Shoe from MARC by Marc Jacobs Fall 2010

And other Neo Geo Designer Accessories:
The futuristic watch on the left is by DUMB Brand and is $60, the purse above is by Bottega Veneta's Fall 2010 line.

To conclude this article I will display some looks that range in price from relatively expensive, to moderate, to affordable.
Two dresses by Tina Turk. Prices are $278 and $248 respectively.

Tank by T-BAGS, price $136; skirt by People's Market, price $140

Tank by Mint, price $72; top by Ella Moss, price $53; both pieces found on


Complete look found at H&M
Necklace: $9.95
Hoodie: $19.95
Belt: $7.95
Dress: $24.95
Sandals $24.95
Tights: $9.95

Both items above can be found at Forever 21. Both are $15.80. The smock dress should be paired with bright tights or a bright colored cardigan to fully pull of the look.
Both tops can be found at Charlotte Russe. Left: $18, Right: $16. Personally, I would layer the two tops.
And last but not least, reports, "For recessionistas, 1980's vintage store finds are a great way to cop the look on the cheap."
Honestly, though this look may not be for most people, I really like it because I love bold colors and shapes. Hope you enjoyed. :)

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Fall Fashion Look 2 - Fifties Chic

In the late 1940's, designer, Christian Dior unveiled his "New Look".
"Christian Dior's nostalgic and elegant 1947 collection, which featured a soft, rounded shoulder line, thin waist, and wide skirt was quite contrary to the austere style of WWII"(1)
His line ushered in the hourglass silhouette which became the standard for the '50s. Givenchy, Balenciaga and Balmain quickly picked the style up and became the go-to designers of that decade. Here are photos of some of their work from the 1950s:

The first dress is a green brocade by Hubert de Givenchy made in the mid '50s.
The second dress is by Cristobal Balenciaga made in 1951.
And the third is a strapless ball gown by Pierre Balmain made in 1957.

"Featuring creative silhouettes, a unique extra space between the garment and body and exquisite colors, his (Balenciaga's) designs were so like artworks that Balenciaga became known as "The Master" of haute couture.... Balenciaga set about using modern shapes and materials that would later become part of the mainstream."(1) Here are a few examples of his work in the '50s:
This fall the runways have brought back the hourglass silhouette and '50s fashions in full vintage force. Prada, Marc Jacobs for Louis Vuitton, and even Christian Dior's fall collections have all revolved around the 1950s as evidenced by these photos from their shows:
Looks from Prada's Fall 2010 runway show.
Looks from Marc Jacobs for Louis Vuitton's Fall 2010 runway show.
The pink dress with orange details is from the Christian Dior Fall 2010 runway show and the black jacket and pencil skirt combo is from the Bibhu Mohaparta Fall 2010 runway show.
The most popular fifties come-backs from this season are:
  • Swing Dresses
  • Pencil Skirts
  • Bustiers
  • Swing Skirts
  • Cardigans
  • And Sweaters
"A little bit of modernism has been implemented through the collections, modernism given through the colors and accessories used to complete the look of the outfits."(2)
As this is a vintage look it is much harder to find in stores. The pencil skirt and cardigan can be found about anywhere, but to find the other pieces will take a little more digging. The four best places to look would, in my opinion, be, vintage stores, "new vintage" stores, online versions of both of these, and, last but not least, your Mom and Grandma's closets. I was able to find several affordable '50s looks on, which is an online store that sells some vintage and a lot of "new vintage" apparel.
Both dress can be found on for $54.99
Both the dress and skirt can be found at Dress $52.99, Skirt $94.99
And I also found several Fifties Chic outfits from my mom's closet which are entirely free. Yay!!!

(1). Fashion: From the 18th to the 20th Century by The Kyoto Costume Institute

Monday, August 16, 2010

Fall Fashion Look 1 - Minimalism

For some of us school has just started and for others it is about to start. Either way, or even if you aren't starting a new school year, fall is about new possibilities and fresh starts as a new season begins. Lately, we have seen a lot of frills, beads, sequins, ruffles, patterns, prints, fringes, buttons and basically any embellishment you can possibly think of plastered on clothes. Phoebe Philo, Creative Director for CĂ©line, has started afresh. She has brought back Minimalism and it has taken over the fall runways with spirit.

Calvin Klein, a master of minimalism, described it this way, "Minimalism is not about abandoning pattern or print. I see minimalism to be a philosophy that involves an overall sense of balance, knowing when to take away, subtract. It's an indulgence in superbly executed cut, quiet plays of color tones and clean strong shapes."

Amanda Brooks writes in her book, I Love Your Style, "From what what I have learned there are two versions of minimalism in fashion. There is the heady, more conceptual idea of inventing new shapes, proportions and silhouettes as a way to create interest in the absence of decoration. And then there is the idea of taking more classic shapes and proportions and stripping them down to their barest essentials."
Amanda also gives us a list of what she considers the essentials to a minimalist style:
  • Button-down Cotton Shirt
  • Perfect Black Pants - what makes them perfect is if they serve your purposes
  • Simple Black Dress
  • Simple Tailored Jacket
  • Heavy Winter Coat
  • Solid Color Cashmere Sweaters
  • One Chic Handbag - preferably black or another muted color, no hardware
  • Flats or possibly Pumps
  • Simple Watch - a good choice would be a men's watch
She adds that if you want to mix it up a little or add some spice to what can come off as an overly severe style then you have options:
  • Decorate - a bow on a blouse, a string of pearls, or a fresh flower but don't overdue it
  • Choose softer, more feminine pieces that drape and flow
  • Go vintage - Designer Pierre Cardin for instance
  • Wear a Cape to amp up the drama
  • Pick a Tuxedo
  • Add personality with something shiny like a patent leather clutch or metallic shoes
Teen Vogue intern, Media Brecher, says this about minimalism, "It's uncomplicated and classic, it actually forces you to be more creative, the focus is on fewer pieces, so you have to find a way to make those pieces shine."
Her fall must-haves are as follows:
  • Mod Minis - a throwback from the sixties
  • Tailored Pea Coats
  • and Skinny Black Pants
Because pictures are worth a thousand words, I have pulled pieces from all over the fashion industry to give you an idea of where to find minimal clothes and how to pull this look off.
I know that my budget is fairly tight and that most girls in the midwest don't care to spend thousands on a new fall wardrobe either but first I want to show some High Fashion looks.

A Burberry Blazer priced at $2,173.50

And that's enough for High Fashion. Here are two mid-range priced looks from Anthropologie:

Both looks are perfect because they need no extra pieces. They are special and classic and work on their own.

And last but not least, the affordable looks, what regular people can actually hope to afford:

I created this look on H&M's website and all the items can be found there.
Handbag - $14.95
Poncho - $19.95
Shirt - $9.95
Pants - $49.95

Shirt found at Forever 21, $9.50; Clutch found at Forever 21, $12.80

Pants found at Forever 21, $22.80; Blazer found at Forever 21, $32.80

Tunic found at Charlotte Russe, $24.00