Friday, 29 May 2009

Hapsical is going to.. Paris!

Image source: Daily Life.

We're making one of our mini trips to Paris, which means possibly no new blog posts until Monday/Tuesday (depending on how the Hapsical laptop reacts to French wi-fi etc. etc.). Wondering if we can better spotting Uncle Karl this time... maybe spotting him and conducting a mini interview for the blog (oh, who are we kidding.. we were terrified enough just taking pictures!). Anyway, Colette here we come!

PS. Vaguely related, in terms of travel and designers: how great is this Matthew Williamson for H&M taxi?

Thursday, 28 May 2009

Yves Saint Laurent 1992 Documentary

Yves Saint Laurent and Catherine Deneuve; Image from In Style.

Credit is due to Bryan Boy for unearthing this amazing documentary about Yves Saint Laurent from 1992 (then the 30th anniversary of the house of YSL), and if you read his fabulous blog you'll already have seen this back in April, but the reason we've re-posted it is that we finally just got round to watching it in its entirety, and it is just incredible. If you haven't seen it already, you've just got to set aside about an hour to watch it.

Saint Laurent truly, truly was one of the greats, if not even The Great, of 20th Century fashion, and although the documentary's outlook isn't always glowing (it was made towards the end of his career, as his influence was declining, and shortly before the house was sold off by Yves Saint Laurent and Pierre Bergé) it offers a tantalising look back to the heyday of Saint Laurent, when his shows really seemed more sensational than anything we see today. Although he rarely speaks to the camera, there is some great footage of Saint Laurent (also look out for Suzy Menkes and Anna Wintour..)

We simply can't state enough how worth watching this is..

We're gushing uncharacteristically now, but he really was such an incredible, rarefied person, whose genius may never be matched, and this documentary serves as a good reminder of that.

Related Posts:

Yves Saint Laurent's Paris Apartment.
Yves Saint Laurent's Jardin Majorelle, Marrakech.

Miu Miu SS09 Prints & Miuccia Prada on CNN

All runway images in this post are from - click to see the entire Miu Miu SS09 collection.

Recently Miu Miu shows have almost become as much of a highlight of fashion seasons as Prada shows themselves, as Miuccia Prada continues to explore new themes and push boundaries each season with her secondary line (although Miu Miu is a fully fleged brand in its own right, which would stand well even if the main Prada brand wasn't part of the equation). For spring/summer 2009, Miuccia Prada showed a collection that characteristically was elegant and beautiful, in her usual way, but at the same time slightly cryptic.

What left the greatest impression on us were the numerous different prints on silk, seemingly based on Ancient Greek or Roman mosaic and pottery. As is often the way with Prada's designs, we just feel they work really well but we can't quite place a finger on why. Certainly if you were to describe to us a dress printed with the image of a Greek god in mosaic we probably wouldn't be too excited, but looking at this collection it just really works somehow, partly perhaps because of the interesting irony in taking design motifs from an ancient civilisation and presenting them on the runway in Paris as the latest new, must-have fashion for 2009.

Some pieces available from Net-a-Porter:

As you would expect, the idea is all beautifully executed in terms of quality and design. What do you think? The scope for criticism that we can see is that it could be seen to be a bit obvious or gimmicky, but we think Miuccia makes it work. We also really liked the pieces from the collection which were smartly cut and pleated, despite being made from sacking material or deliberately damaged, almost moth-eaten, fabric. Not the easiest of looks to pull off, but again elegant in a slightly quirky way.

All runway images in this post are from - click to see the entire Miu Miu SS09 collection.

Miuccia Prada recently did a rare TV interview with CNN for their Talk Asia show. We disliked the interviewer who was patronising and slightly vacuous (she had the cheek to say "Many of your pieces tread this fine line between frumpy and trendy," despite the ill-conceived black outfit with bright pink mid-height heels she was wearing herself), but it is so worth watching for an insight into Miuccia and the world of Prada. Just don't expect any great revelations (as we've found with the string of recent fashion TV programmes you have to bear in mind that they're made for a very general, large audience).. we do love Miuccia's accent though, we could sit listening to her speak all day long..

(We've embedded here, but if you click over to the CNN website - HERE - you can view it in a larger player/full screen)

Oddbox: Celine Cut-Out Sandals

These spring/summer 2009 Celine sandals are so wonderfully odd, we're not really sure if they're totally amazing or utterly awful. A little while back, Oddbox featured some similarly odd Dolce & Gabbana shoes which also had a section of the sole missing (has anyone actually tried wearing shoes with cut-out soles?), but these really take the idea to the extreme with their vertiginous height, cut-out platform, rubber grooved grip and graffiti print. They also come in a more restrained white (although our view is that if you're going to go for it you should really go all out with the print ones):

We can see the top ones working for a cool club kid, which is interesting because that's not the image we normally associate with Celine at all. ss09 kiraro sandal shoe

Available from Farfetch.

Monday, 25 May 2009

Spring / Summer 2009 Sandals

From top row to bottom row, left to right: Ann Demeulemeester lace-ups from Feathers, Gucci platforms, Stella McCartney cherry flats from Browns, Prada platforms from Bergdorf Goodman; Jimmy Choo 'tribal' sandals, and Christian Louboutin gold strappy sandals, both from Net-a-Porter, Lanvin embellished flats from Browns; Roberto Cavalli metallic sandals from Net-a-Porter, See by Chloé red flats from Browns, Giuseppe Zanotti crystal platforms from Luisa via Roma; Marc Jacobs metallic bow gladiators from Colette, Azzedine Alaïa strappy sandals from Browns, and pink Givenchy flats from Net-a-Porter; Balenciaga embellished sandals from Browns, Roger Vivier red platforms from Colette, and Pierre Hardy neoprene gladiators; pink Manolo Blahnik sandals from Barneys, Giuseppe Zanotti black gladiators from Net-a-Porter, and green Paul Smith sandals from Farfetch; silver Miu Miu flats from Net-a-Porter, Yves Saint Laurent cage flats from Colette, and studded Manolo Blahnik sandals from Barneys.

Summer has finally arrived in London (spells of rain today nonwithstanding), which has got us all excited about sandals, sunglasses, shorts, t-shirts... Here we present our selection of some of the coolest designer sandals for SS09. Ok, so the prices of this lot may not exactly be recession friendly, but there's nothing wrong with a little fantasy..

And in case your feet aren't looking their very best after winter hibernation in socks and closed-toe shoes, before you expose them to the outside world:

L'Occitane soothing shea butter foot-cream, to reduce redness and irritation; Uslu Airlines nail polishes in two of spring/summer 09's biggest colours; Eve Lom moisturising Creme Universelle for dry skin; St. Tropez Perfect Legs for a healthy glow; Origins Reinventing The Heel "Mega-moisture for dry, cracked feet"; Kiehl's All-Sport Foot Cream for relief from minor discomforts and supple skin; Space NK foot file for tough skin.

From top row to bottom row, left to right: Jil Sander cross-over strap sandals from Oki-Ni, Pierre Hardy gladiators, and Givenchy multi-strap sandals from The Corner; Raf Simons x Dr Martins sandals from Oki-Ni, and Acne red gladiators; Etro sandals from The Corner and Lanvin rubber strap sandals from Browns; Lanvin navy blue strap sandals from Luisa via Roma, Raf Simons sandals from Oki-Ni, Yves Saint Laurent buckle sandals from Saks; Jil Sander black strap sandals from Aloha Rag, Neil Barrett black sandals from The Corner, and Lanvin pink ribbon sandals from Browns.

Designer: Third Floor New York

Founded in 2008, Third Floor New York is an exciting new menswear label by designers Cedric Haughton and Anthony Hendrickson. We couldn't find an SS09 collection on their website, but for fall/winter 2009 (above) they produced a very strong collection, which was innovative and edgy (sometimes to the extreme: we haven't included the zip-up male dress or the leather 'bondage' strap vest here), yet at the same time it's mostly very wearable, which is so vital for men's collections to be successful.

We particularly like the pleated shirt (that works surprisingly well in peach, a colour which wouldn't normally spring to mind in a fashion context) and horizontally pleated trousers/pants, and the red and black (single piece?) jacket, with its adventures in volume and cut. Overall it's a pleasing aesthetic, with evidence of skill and innovation in cut and construction, which is a combination we always applaude. We'll be looking out for more from these talented designers in the future.

See more on their website.

Retail Joy: Département Féminin, Feathers, Oi Polloi, Andreas Murkudis & Komakino

About a month ago we started a new series of posts examining cool, lesser known online shops (HERE), and now we're back with Part 2, as we take a look at more online shops, and select some of our top picks.

1) Département Féminin

Azzedine Alaïa black dress, Ann Demeulemeester bag, Marni gloves, Balenciaga jacket, Balenciaga broach and sandals, Dries van Noten embellished top, and Rick Owens leather jacket.

One of the amazing things about the internet is how there seems to be almost limitless scope for discovering new things. Case in point is Toulouse based Département Féminin; we thought we knew all the online, luxe high fashion retailers, but then we discovered Département Féminin with its ultra-stylish range of women's fashion, from Balenciaga, Ann Demeulemeester, Balmain, Lanvin, Rick Owens, Marni, Chloé, Azzedine Alaïa and more. The overall collection is smaller than, say, Net-a-Porter or Luisa via Roma's, but it's all very well edited and chosen in the best possible taste, making it the perfect French boutique experience online (minus the usual terrifying judgemental staff of 'real life').


2) Feathers

Alexander McQueen leggings, Ann Demeulemeester gathered tunic top, Y's Yohji Yamamoto assymetric cardigan, Givenchy tiered dress, Haider Ackermann jacket, Jean Paul Gaultier dress, See by Chloé sandals, Chloé bag, and Linda Farrow Luxe sunglasses.

London based Feathers boutique, which sells women's fashion from a cool mix of brands including Basso & Brooke, Alexander McQueen, Jil Sander, Peter Pilotto, Alexander Wang, Jean-Paul Gaultier, Meadham Kirchhoff, and Undercover, has a comprehensive online store, which showcases the shop's great selection from the brands it carries. While we would find it very hard to fault Net-a-Porter (lack of men's department notwithstanding), sometimes it's nice to browse smaller, more 'intimate' boutiques online (just like in real life), where you can get more of a feel of the store and of the sort of look the buyer has gone for.


3) Oi Polloi

A.P.C jacket, Limoland varsity jacket, Acne check shirt, Nom de Guerre t-shirt, Folk belt, and YMC boots.

Hailing from Manchester, Oi Polloi was "started in 2002 as a reaction to the mass of bland, uninspiring men's fashion stores lining the UK's high streets," and today they stock a cool range of casual menswear from brands like Acne, A.P.C, Folk, YMC, Limoland, and Nom de Guerre.


4) Andreas Murkudis

Natalia Brilli leather skull, Yohji Yamamoto red dress, Kostas Murkudis men's jacket, Valextra wallet, Kostas Murkudis dress, Dries van Noten sunglasses, Martin Margiela sunglasses and cut-out shoe, and heresienthal glass decanter.

Andreas Murkudis is the brother of cool fashion designer Kostas Murkudis (see post here), and owner of a scarily hip, minimalist Berlin store which shares his name. More precisely, Andreas Murkudis is an enclave of six hip shops (one of which is dedicated to Acne), which cover men's and women's fashion, accessories and jewellery, books, furniture, home ware, and design objects. A good selection of products from each store is available online. Fashion brands include Kostas Murkudis, Martin Margiela, Raf Simons, Dries van Noten, Balenciaga, and Yohji Yamamoto.


5) Komakino

Ann Demeulemeester boots and cardigan, Damir Doma jacket and necklace, Number (N)ine jacket, and Damir Doma scarf.

Komakino is a guerilla store in Vancouver, which pops up in a new grimy-yet-obscenely-cool location in the city each season, that sells men's fashion from brands like Raf Simons, Number (N)ine, Ann Demeulemeester, M.A+, Damir Doma, and Undercover. While we really wish one would pop up here in London, they do sell online.


Related Posts:

Retail Joy: Très Bien Shop, Antonioli, My Theresa, The Apartment & Aloha Rag
Retail Joy: Designer Vintage Online
Retail Joy: Soup & Fish Store

Stay tuned for more online fashion retail features in the future...

Saturday, 23 May 2009

Embarrassing Outfit of the Month...

Spied on Tottenham Court Road in London on Friday. To his credit, he was really working that sign (but we thought it was too mean/blatant to take a photo front on!). We're pretty sure a designer has done a collection with sandwich boards (Viktor & Rolf? Martin Margiela?) but it's possible we've imagined it.

Overall, though, we don't know what's more embarrassing... this outfit, or the fact that we haven't updated Hapsical since Tuesday. It's getting silly how often we seem to be saying this, but we REALLY, REALLY are going to get back to updating daily like we used to soon.

EDIT: Yes! Just remembered which designer it was.. not a collection per se, but when the Margiela store first opened in London several years back, they used a rather cool sandwich board campaign:

Images from SHOWstudio - click to see more (it's worth the click).

There may well also have been a designer collection that used sandwich boards, but we can't think right now, because we're hurrying off for another Dalston adventure..

Tuesday, 19 May 2009

Lanvin Leopard Love

Runway pictures from ss09

We'll make no excuses for this post... it's just a whole lot of Lanvin leopard print eye candy - and indeed why not? We absolutely loved Alber Elbaz's spring/summer 2009 collection, and a key part of it is his classy and luxurious take on leopard print. Enjoy..

From top row downwards, left to right: Trench coat from Colette, strapless dress from Browns, and other two dresses both from
Colette; Clutch bag from Net-a-Porter, skirt from Colette, dress and ballet flats both from My Theresa, blue skirt from Colette, pink skirt and embellished bag both from Browns. Platform slingbacks, from Net-a-Porter, both tote bags and long chain bag all from My Theresa. Heels from Browns, both mini pochettes from Luisa via Roma. Heels with bow from Net-a-Porter, flat pumps and adjacent bag both from Browns, darker blue bag from Luisa via Roma.

Alber Elbaz was featured in, and on the cover of, the Observer Magazine last Sunday:

Love these portraits.. and every time we read an interview with Alber, our love for Lanvin is reinforced even more. Read the interview and article here. Recent interviews with Alber have made quite a lot of his constant anxiety about things.. we wonder if this is really the case (oh Alber, you have nothing to worry about, certainly on the fashion front at the very least.. your collections could hardly be any more perfect), or if it's just a spin interviewers put on things..

Designer: Jakub Polanka

We've been meaning to blog about Czech designer Jakub Polanka for a little while now because, um, wow... we really love his FW09 collection (oh, there we go again, banging on about winter collections when summer hasn't even properly started yet here), because we're always suckers for that futuristic look (more in terms of a genre of design, than a representation of what we might actually be wearing in the future), and he's executed it very well, with a cool overall aesthetic and strong technical skill. We love the way he has experiemented with cut, and the way the garments hang, particuarly with the cocooning coats and the interestingly draped dresses. Not all particularly wearable, but we overall really like it.

For fall/winter 2008 he did some incredible tailoring, reminscent of 60s Balenciaga:

See more on his website. We wish it had hi-res images of the collections.

Anna Wintour on CBS

Image of Anna Wintour from

So we're kind of assuming *everybody* will already have watched the 13 minute profile of Anna Wintour, done by CBS for their 60 Minutes show, and probably already sounded off online about what they thought of it (for the record, we loved it - even if it didn't reveal much for people like ourselves who already follow fashion in depth) - but in case you haven't seen it yet, you can see it HERE.

But wait! There's more.. On the CBS website there are 8 brief outtake clips too (HERE) which you simply have to watch as well. We found the CBS video player quite temperamental (we had to disable our ad blocker and refresh the page multiple times before anything would play), but it's so worth persevering, if not just to hear Anna describe a recent visit to Minnesota where, in her own words, "I could only kindly describe most of the people I saw as little houses," and for the glimpse into the Vogue fashion cupboard, which is a true fashion fantasy world if ever there was one...

People online have been getting very worked up about Morley Safer's 'sarcastic' commentary, but we really don't see the issue. He was hardly that adversarial (we really doubt John Galliano is crying himself to sleep because of a quip Morley made about his personal style), and it was definitely preferable to an unremittingly sugar-coated commentary. As for the claim that the programme doesn't show us anything new, we agree to an extent, but it was intended for a large TV audience many of whom would have much less fashion knowledge than all the online comments, and anyway it still had us minorly falling off our chairs in excitement..

Friday, 15 May 2009

Friday Fashion Pics

This post is really just a collection of fashion images which we've come across recently, which we're particularly loving right now.

Above: a Gareth Pugh SS09 outfit photographed for the NY Times Style magazine. The photo is from super-stylist Nicola Formichetti's blog.

The next four images are from Mandi Lennard's blog (link here), which is one of the Colette store blogs, and which is our latest blog obsession. Mandi is a top London PR, whose firm represents designers like Gareth Pugh and Henry Holland, and her blog documents her obscenely cool/fashionable existence in a way that cleverly manages not to make us want to hate her. Oh, and we just LOVE the fact that her personal style simultaneously includes both plenty of Chanel and alarming false nails, currently painted with Nike ticks..

Giles Deacon Louboutins:

That Chanel SS09 bag, carried by LOVE magazine editor Katie Grand:

Love this shot:

Anna dello Russo, fashion editor of Japanese Vogue. Picture is, of course, from the ever amazing Jak & Jil. We've banged on about ADR's extraordinary and lavish personal style before, so we won't do again. All we will say is w-o-w and, in the words of Tommy/Mr Jak & Jil, thank God for fashion enthusiasts like Anna.

We're rather loving Street Style Aesthetic (even though the guy laboriously took our picture at London Fashion Week in February and never used it - oh, the rejection, the shame, the pain of it all!), a lesser known, but high quality, street style site. The picture of this woman in a DvF dress really struck us. The print of the dress is amazing, and very striking in its own right, but we just LOVE the way she's made it all look so effortlessly cool by playing it down with the plain, cropped jacket, and the Converse style shoes with coordinating pink socks. It just all works so well, and looks so easy and laid back, yet chic and stylish at the same time. It's a great photo too, technically speaking.

Finally, we love (*not actively trying here to set a record for number of times the word 'love' has been used in a post) Fendi's spring/summer 2009 ad campaign, shot by Karl Lagerfeld. It's simple, it's not trying too hard, but at the same time it feels fresh and chic (helped by a strong collection of clothes and accessories for the season):

Image from Frillr.
Image from Smile Blog.


Just don't ask how/why we just remembered about this, something we hoped we'd banished to the recycle bin of our memories. All we'll say is this: skimming over the issue of how humanity could have stooped to producing a truly diabolical pop song that sexualises fast food, how ahead of the times were they with their statement shoulders..?!

Obsession: Alaïa Spring/Summer 2009

Images from Fashionologie.

Secretive designer Azzedine Alaïa, one of fashion's true greats, may have been in the (fashion) news quite a bit lately, since Michelle Obama is a fan, and because of his recent feud with Anna Wintour, but his elsuive brand remains website-less, and it's very rare to come across pictures of his collections, both online and in print. Nonetheless, Alaïa still has a huge following, and when you do stumble across a few pictures it is a real treat. We just love these SS09 look book images, for the clothes themselves and for the photography, the styling and the model. It's just so stylish, and really set apart from a lot of other high fashion offerings.

Spring/Summer 2009 Alaïa from Browns:

Click images to enlarge. Details on the shoes are incredible.

The Alaïa corner in Dover Street Market in London, another of few comprehensive stockists: