Have you heard of Shirahime (白姫, pronounced she-ra-he-meh)? It’s a blog run by Dr. Pamela Ravasio. Ravasio, who is also co-founder/director of  texƧture, publishes articles on the fashion industry with useful information on how the industry can become more sustainable.

I highly recommend reading some Dr. Ravasio’s short essays. From posts on business and technology to Fashion Weeks and jewelry, she provides insight into different sectors of the fashion world all while contemplating their overall affect (positive and negative) on the global scale.

As someone who is still relatively ‘green’ at researching sustainability in the fashion and textile business, I find the Shirahime blog very helpful.  Happy reading!

Icon: Anna Piaggi

via The Sartorialist

Anna Piaggi, Italian style icon, passed away this Tuesday at the age of 81.  Fashion writer at such magazines as Vogue Italia and Vanity, the woman truly influenced the world of moda.

Piaggi had such a wonderful energy and playfulness in the clothes she chose to wear.  I’m head-over-heels fascinated with men and women (especially older–Iris Apfel, Anna Dello Russo)  who are so fearless with their wardrobes.  They show that fashion doesn’t have to be so stuffy– it can and should be fun.  Hats off to you, Ms. Piaggi. RIP.

via The Sartorialist

Anna Piaggi with Stephen Jones at an exhibition in London (2006)

Green Class

ESMOD Berlin’s new MA program “Sustainability in Fashion” was created in 2011.  Its first batch of students are graduating this October.  The course is set up to help students approach design in an ‘…ecologically, ethically, socially and economically sustainable’ way.

The class is made up of people specializing in different areas, from design (sustainable Lederhosen sneakers!?) to business ventures (sustainable retail/lifestyle website) .  It is also a very international group, giving students a unique learning experience which is so critical in today’s global fashion industry.  Watch for the names in the video- they’ll surely on their way to success!

Spotlight On: Mila Schön

Mila Schön wearing her signature black and white pearl earrings

A re-run of the Mila Schön Spring/Summer 2012 collection was on TVModa yesterday.  The colors, techniques used, and overall bookish-prettiness of the line was fantastic.  I paused.  I thought.  I confirmed that I had never seen a collection by Mila Schön.

Mila Schön S/S 2012

So I did a little research.  I found a Wiki page with all the requisite information of which I will dispense in a moment.  What surprised me was that neither the American nor the British Vogue websites covered the collection.  When I located it on Vogue Italia , I got a ‘pagina non trovata': page not found.

Take my word that the collection was awesome.  What I wanted to research and share was Ms. Schön herself.  So, the Wiki stats:

Marella Agnelli wearing a Mila Schön gown at the NY Black and White Ball. She won ‘Best Dressed’.

Schön, née Nutrizio, was a Croatian born into a wealthy Italian family in 1915.  She eventually married a well-off, precious metals dealer, Aurelio Schön, and shopped with the 1940’s postwar privileged clientele at Balenciaga and Dior.  When her marriage ended and she was left broke with a young son, she decided to make those dresses that she could no longer afford.  With the hands of skilled Milanese seamstresses, Schön opened her first shop in 1958.  Schön’s most famous clients included Marella Agnelli, Jackie Kennedy Onassis and her younger sister Lee Radziwill, Farah Diba, and Imelda Marcos.

From the ‘Mila Schön: Lines Colors Surfaces’ tribute exhibition

The Mila Schön brand is modern.  It is elegant and timeless.  Its inspiration came from contemporary art which Schön collected.  The company eventually had its own textile factory, and Schön brought an original textile called double-faced fabric to the fashion world.  The company has been owned by Japanese group Itochu since 1992 and at the beginning of this year New Antica Group s.r.l. has been assigned the relaunching of the brand. Bianca Gervasio is the current design director, a position she’s held since 2008.

One of the designs from Ms. Schön’s last collection

Schön died in 2008, but her ideals are still very present in the house’s style.  How ironically refreshing to see designer heritage being carried into today’s world of anything-goes fashion.  Have you heard of Mila?  What do you think of the Mila Schön brand?

Return + Happy Summer Reading

After a little break of summer traveling (and just plain old, heat-provoked laziness), I’m back to keep on keepin’ on.  For Monday, I’d like to share a few fashion and art-related books I’ve recently discovered.  Because what says summer like ‘books’?

The first is a new publication from Taschen, The Complete Costume History.  The book is a reprint of August Racinet’s Le Costume historique first published between 1876-88 in France.  The new copy has an introduction from Francoise Tétart-Vittu.  Racinet was diligent in recording his studies of how the world dressed, from antiquity into his own times.  This is at the top of my ‘Books To Buy’ list because it reminds me of those fun DK Eyewitness books I used to read at the local library.  It seems like some seriously detailed illustrations are involved in this new edition.

The second book is a fun and all-too-relevent one aptly named, Cycle Style.  Complete with Hipsters and new-age Dandies, photographer Horst A. Friedrichs snaps up London’s bike scene.  Prestel published the book in March of this year and I’d so like to find a copy through which to thumb.

Lastly, a new edition of  The Art Book, which will be released by Phaidon this September.  The iconic guide to art  (which is already available in 20 languages) will include an additional 100 artists with their key works.  It’s an expanded book of masterpieces–what else to say!?  Here’s a video advertisement from Phaidon:

Trending: Painterly Pops

Splashing onto many-a retail canvas this spring and summer is the watercolor trend .  Joining the color-blocking and ombre looks of last year, the painterly patterns of 2012 bring even more color to your closet.  Makes me want to paint or, at least, go to an exhibit… Enjoy!

Abstract Print skirt at a-thread

Hand-painted Taika Flats by Leifnotes at Anthropologie

Geological Cutout Mini Dress- Treasure by Samantha Pleet for Anthropologie’s Made in Kind

Kimono by Abraxas Rex- I think I would frame this! (Warning: high price tag)

Australian Tapestry Workshop

One of my all-time fav Kelly Wearstler interiors

P.S. The first picture is from an episode of Mad Men, when Mr. Cooper’s installs his newest painting by Mark Rothko in his office.  Made me giggle.

Giles Resort 2013

Giles Deacon’s namesake pre-collection has a ‘delirious essence’, according to Mr.Tim Blanks on  Indeed, there is a lot going on in Deacon’s line– the presentation is similar to Masha Reva’s Merging project.  The designer used his own photographs from the Castle Howard (Where Evelyn Waugh’s novel Brideshead Revisited was filmed) printed onto an elegant silk fabric and wrapped into lovely evening dresses with cool grey and blue hues. However, some of those statues he caught on camera were headless.  What’s a maverick to do?  Stick on a cartoon head with oversized bob-cut hair and red lips, of course!  Additionally, there was a colorful tromp-l’oeil (yay) element that Deacon worked in to his prints.  A few more cartoon prints were tailored in a classic fashion– shift dresses, cropped trousers.

Wearable?  Yes.  But Deacon also incorporated several ultra-classic options for those a bit less daring and, probably, for sales. Bringing Spring 2012’s trend of sweet pastels and A-line dresses along, the second half of the Giles Resort collection was pretty.  Yet, far less sticky-gamine than much of the current year’s look.  Tweeds, smart Spring coats, and cropped boleros made these looks much more sophisticated.

Would do you think of Deacon’s cartoony prints?  Would you wear them?

This Shoe: Coclico

Klucia coat/ebony shoe from Spring 2012 Collection

Have you heard of Coclico (‘coquelicot’ in French= poppy flower)?  It’s a wonderful shoe brand by the duo Sandra Canselier and Lisa Nading.  Their shoes have that classy European-chic style, yet are so fresh and unique.

The company launched in 2000, and their shoes continue to bring artisan flair to the international shoe market.  Hand-crafted in Mallorca (Spain), Coclico shoes are made with “finely tuned lasts, quality footbeds, artisanal leathers in signature hues, and uniquely sculptural heels”.

Aside from producing absolutely gorgeous footwear, Coclico is dedicated to being a sustainable brand.  From choosing materials such as primarily veg-tanned leather and properly harvested wood and cork, to purchasing carbon offset credits from Native Energy, Coclico proves they are an earth-friendly shop.  Check out their website and blog to read the additional information that makes Coclico a truly unique, responsible, and modern name in shoes.

Natalia shoe

olimpia grado high heel

pristi acero shoe

Trending: Recycled Glass

West Elm stacking bottles

It’s popping up everywhere:  recycled glass.  You’d think working with recycled glass would be limiting, but artists are coming up with many beautiful and unique products.  Here’s some pretty little born-again glass.

Lanterns from West Elm… Aren’t the colors great?

Coat hook at Etsy

Yummy Capri Blue candles at Anthropologie in a lovely recycled glass base

Bracelets by Jenny Gaynor @ Haute Nature

Masha Reva: Merging

“Today a human is surrounded by huge amount of information, while social networks and blogs bring us an opportunity to create a superficial representation of ourselves in the web. Becoming a part of virtual reality, a computer data, we merge within the boundless informational field that is internet.”- Masha Reva

Ukrainian designer/artist Masha Reva has a good point.  She emphasizes her ideas with a mixing of interesting prints, various shapes and textures, over a backdrop of busy imagery: saturated, to say the least.  The ‘merging’ of images, words, and actions have long been part of the quotidian, but throw in the Internet and those daily stimuli come ten-fold.
To show the critique of today’s digital normalcy in a photograph is interesting.  Many mediums (articles, documentaries, organizations!) have touched on the 21th Century’s overload of information, but somehow these images seem to say so much without any explanations.  The viewer is left to contemplate how Masha’s message comes across for him/herself personally.
For me, I half want to get off the computer and just go lay in the sunshine/half want to look up more awesome pictures and use Pinterest all afternoon.  How do you feel about them?  How do you deal with an info overload?  X
More info!:  Masha Reva is also creating shoes!  Look at these lovelies!  All images via.