Style Icon: Vivienne Westwood

I design things to help people to hopefully express their personality Dame Vivienne Westwood, who built an International brand with an eccentric edge.

April 8, 1941 – December 29, 2022

Vivienne Westwood attends the Vivienne Westwood show as part of Paris Fashion Week (Photo by Pierre Suu/Getty Images)
VIVIENNE WESTWOOD, SCARLET JERSEY & TULLE TUTU DRESS
Kate Moss | Mario Testino, Vogue 2009

Style is a way to say who you are without having to speak.  Someone else said this but I’m not sure who it was. In simpler terms Fashion is what you buy and Style is what you do with it.  For example:

Here are some of my favourite fun and fashionable Westwood looks – compliments of “The Guardian” with link to original article below.  Glancing back at some of the most memorable looks from the iconic British fashion designer and rebel.

Autumn/winter 2001-02, Paris
Westwood’s clothes featured rips and safety pins but were steeped in history.
Photograph: Victor Virgile/Gamma-Rapho/Getty Images

The reason why I am proud of my part in the punk movement is that I think it really did implant a message that was already there. The hippies told it to me, but punk made it something cool for people to stand up for, which is that we do not believe government, that we are against government – Vivienne Westwood

London 1985
A model wearing Vivienne Westwood clothes outside the World’s End boutique in Chelsea.
Photograph: Universal ImagesGroup/Getty Images

 

 

 

Autumn/winter 1992-93, Paris.
In 1993 Vivienne produced her own tartan and invented her own clan, MacAndreas, for the Anglomania collection. The Lochcarron of Scotland officially recognised the clan, a process that normally takes 200 years.  Photograph: WWD/Penske Media/Getty Images

Taken from “The Guardian” – No fashion designer ever had a Paris show like the one staged by Vivienne Westwood in 1991. Although she was by then 50 and had been making clothes for sale for 20 years – and the British Fashion Council had named her designer of the year – she stitched much of that collection on her own sewing machine in her shabby south London flat, hand-finishing it in the van that transported her, and the models, to France, where the couturier Azzedine Alaïa had invited her to guest-show. Despite those limitations, the collection was a major success.

Autumn/winter 1991-92
Dubbed ‘Always on Camera’, this collection was inspired by 1930s Hollywood.
Photograph: John van Hasselt/Corbis/Getty Images
Spring/summer 1995, Paris
Supermodel Linda Evangelista in a dazzling gown on the runway.
Photograph: Images Press/Getty Images

Buy less. Choose well. Make it last. Quality, not quantity. Everybody’s buying far too many clothes – Vivienne Westwood

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Autumn/winter 1995-96, Paris. Linda Evangelista on the runway in Paris, France.
Photograph: PL Gould/Images Press/Getty Images
Autumn Winter 2000/01
Jerry Hall in a ready-to-wear gown.
Photograph: Pierre Vauthey/Sygma/Getty Images
Autumn/winter 1992-93, Paris. Her own designed tartan for the Anglomania collection. 
Photograph: WWD/Penske Media/Getty Images
Autumn/winter 1994-95 – Paris.  Carla Bruni in the famous fuzzy coat and matching underwear from the On Liberty collection. In 2007 Westwood was one of the first designers to ban the use of real fur in her collections.  Photograph: Michel Dufour/WireImage.
Autumn/winter 2013-14
A model walks the runway during the Vivienne Westwood ready-to-wear show.
Photograph: Stéphane Cardinale/Corbis/Getty Images
Autumn/winter 1995-96, Paris
When asked about her most memorable Westwood show by Another Mag, Kate Moss said: “The one where I had a rabbit and I think I was naked … I don’t think they’d put any top on me. I don’t know, I was wearing Crotch Minis [dropped crotch trousers] and I think some crazy hairdo by Sam McKnight – a mohawk but it was all curly …”
Photograph: Daniel Simon/Gamma-Rapho/Getty Images

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2012, New York City.
Rihanna performs in a Vivienne Westwood gown at the Victoria’s Secret fashion show in New York City.  Photograph: Kevin Mazur/WireImageTaken from:

https://www.theguardian.com/fashion/gallery/2022/dec/30/vivienne-westwood-best-looks-in-pictures

 

Fashion Week Re-cap

Indulging our inner (and outer) fashionista

A few highlights from two world class fashion events that took place end of March in Palm Desert.

The first set is a selection from the shops on El Paseo showcasing some of my favourites.  Taken from the Diva front row section courtesy of Design Diva of the Desert Tracy Turco.  I meant it when I said we can never hope to fill her shoes, but we can sure hope to fill her seats.  I thank her very much for the experience.  Tracy was also one of the sponsors.  It was a fabulous evening.

Fashion Week on El Paseo was held March 19-26, at The Gardens on El Paseo celebrating 15 years of style at the West Coast’s largest consumer fashion show.

Every show provides an inspiring, immersive fashion experience and features cocktail receptions, trunk shows, celebrity meet-and-greets, and much more. Highlighting fashion trends and showcasing a who’s-who of the country’s top design talents (including some stars of tomorrow), Fashion Week El Paseo takes one of the world’s most relatable art forms and brings it to you in style.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

one of the sponsors


On Saturday, March 26th, two women I know put together the first high-end vintage collective sale and informal fashion show in Palm Desert.  It was held outdoors at Image Galleries on a very hot day…but that didn’t interfere with attendance and an overall good time with an amazing vintage selection. Not to mention the art gallery…where art and fashion intermingle.  I mean what can be better than that?

Tracy Turco looks good no matter what she wears – always.

Yes; it appears that GLAMOUR IS indeed BACK!  At least in Palm Springs/Palm Desert.  After almost two years in sweats and pajamas it’s a welcome shift.

Photos: d. king

“Glamour is Back” photo: taken from Gay Desert Guide.

Vintage Fundraising Fashion

SHOP LOCAL.  SHOP VINTAGE.

Everyone I know has been busy cleaning out their closets lately.  Not necessarily to make way for more clothes/shoes/accessories although  but because we women have become to realize that we don’t need so much stuff.

Ethical and sustainable fashion is a growing movement worldwide.  Fashion blogs are talking about affordable fashion and  more conscious style minimalism.  Here in Vancouver we have a gently used boutique that fundraises for the Vancouver Hospice Society.  The Vancouver Hospice is where my late husband spent his remaining days four years ago.  Believe me when I say that this topic is not at the top of my list of things to talk about, however it was the most caring place to be for end of life care.  They have an amazing staff and a support system that continues after your loved one has passed.

Vancouver Hospice Society (VHS) was incorporated as a non-profit charitable organization in 2003 by a group of dedicated individuals who recognized the need for a society that could advocate for people and families facing end-of-life issues.

A few years later, volunteers Dell Whelan and Jenny Shaw spearheaded the concept of a charity shop as a fundraising arm of VHS. The first HOB (Hospice Opportunity Boutique) opened its doors in 2006 selling quality gently used women’s clothing. HOB Too followed later, selling vintage treasures, housewares and furniture.

Vancouver Hospice  – located in the residential neighbourhood of Shaughnessy.

Both stores rely solely on items donated from the community.

They are volunteer operated by two separate committees with over 140 volunteers in total. All funds raised go directly to VHS’s 8 bed hospice home on Granville Street.

 

 

If you’re in Vancouver check them out:

VISIT: The HOB Thrift Boutique

2236 West 41st Ave

 

 

 

 

 

Style Showcase – Anna Kosturova

You may have begun to notice that I’m featuring more local artists, designers, shops and restaurants on this website than before.

Since there were travel restrictions for a long while, I looked closer to home and began to pay more attention to artists within my own circles, city and surroundings.  And let me tell you – we do not lack here in British Columbia for local talent in plenty of areas.  And so it is with great pleasure that I share another chic boutique owned by a local designer I recently met by the name of Anna Kosturova.  Anna’s gorgeous pop-up shop is located in Gastown, Vancouver where she sells her ethically made and sustainable designs of the most exquisite crochet clothing.  Shown here in photos taken by me.

The vibe in the shop is pure Summer at it’s absolute finest.  And if crochet isn’t your thing, there’s enough locally made eye candy inside to attract any fashionista worth his/her salt.  If you’re wondering where this phrase originated (of course you are!) the saying “worth its salt” originated with the ancient Romans, who valued salt highly.  A true fashionista values genuine “style” – even if it’s not really their own style so to speak.  Speaking of which….

eye candy

Nap Lovers Candles by Pourlair, Sandals & Flip Flops by Malvados, Photographic Prints by Rebecca Amber, Hard Kombucha sign by Plenty…and plenty more like sunglasses, handbags, hats, bikinis….it’s possible I may have missed some things…there’s a lot to look at.

Pure Paradise!

this photo by Anna Kosturova

Website: https://annakosturova.com/

Photos: d. king

 

 

 

The Fashion Essential – Classic White Shirt

Whether you dress it up for a polished put-together look or wear it casually with jeans or shorts, you can never go wrong.  Especially with so many versions to choose from.  Tucked in, left out, or worn halfway…this fresh looking closet staple is certainly nothing new. It has been in style forever. The only rule is to make sure it’s clean.  On this page some random photos of crisp button downs with a few people you might recognize.  

SJP

Cindy Crawford

Every woman should own at least one.  Do you have a favorite?

 

 

Spring Mix

A sprinkling of what’s coming off the runway…

Street Style at Paris Fashion Week Spring 2021
Street Style at Paris Fashion Week Spring 2021

What’s on the runway always gets incorporated into something more wearable, at least for the majority of us.  So just like a flower blossoms for its own joy, so should we wear what makes us happy. Remember; trends come and go – style is eternal.

Looking forward to lighter, brighter days ahead!

“Fashion is what you’re offered four times a year by designers. And style is what you choose.” —Lauren Hutton

“We must never confuse elegance with snobbery.” —Yves Saint Laurent

“Fashion you can buy, but style you possess. The key to style is learning who you are, which takes years. There’s no how-to road map to style. It’s about self expression and, above all, attitude.” —Iris Apfel

“Don’t be into trends. Don’t make fashion own you, but you decide what you are, what you want to express by the way you dress and the way to live.” —Gianni Versace

The Rebel: Robin’s Jeans

Jeans will never fade from fashion…

It’s not very often that I buy a pair of “new” jeans.  I like vintage style so I prefer to rummage through well worn versions in various consignment or vintage boutiques.  I don’t like them too beat up looking either, so it’s a bit of a game.  As you’re probably aware, even though they’re everywhere…try finding a pair that’s just so for fit and style to your body type.

Fast forward to Robin’s Jeans.

the logo

I first encountered their flagship storefront in Beverly Hills several years ago and bypassed it because the window display appeared too “rock ‘n roll” for my liking. In fact, that’s exactly the kind of clientele they appeal to.  I’m told that Steven Tyler wears only Robin’s Jeans. The collection has grown as celebrity and fashion insiders such as Nicki Minaj, Katy Perry, Beyonce, Miley Cyrus, Avril Lavigne & Fergie have consistently made Robin’s Jean their go-to denim brand.

But that’s not why I bought my first pair just recently. I was in Richmond, B.C. at an outlet mall (killing time while waiting for something on my car to be updated) and had a look around.

I know a good thing when I see it.  After walking into Robin’s Jeans and spending considerable time admiring the collection but finding it “too much” for me, I ended up walking out wearing a super comfortable, super soft, vintagy-looking, slightly worn-in, light wash denim style with a perfect fit…although expensive.  Except for the wings displayed on the pockets, these were one of the plainest they had in stock. It probably won’t be the last pair I buy from them.  The quality is outstanding.

Robin’s Jean’s unique signature, a set of golden wings, is a reflection of the designer’s positive energy and playful spirit. The brand, which consists of men’s, women’s, and kids clothing and accessories, is known for its stylish cuts and avant-garde washes, as well as its intricate detailing, studded embellishments and embroidery.

In addition to the flagship stores in Beverly Hills and New York City, Robin’s Jean products are sold in approximately 800 specialty stores and major retailers, including Sak’s Fifth Avenue, Nordstrom, Bergdorf Goodman and Neiman Marcus.

International distribution includes some of the most prestigious retailers in the world including Marie Claire in Belgium, Brigitte B in St. Tropez, Harvey Nichols in Hong Kong, and Saks Fifth Avenue in Dubai.

THE MAN BEHIND ROBIN’S JEAN

Robert Chretien

Robin Chretien, Founder and Designer of Robin’s Jean was born in Lyon, France where he grew up immersed in a creative environment. His mother, a talented fashion designer, and his father, an artist, always encouraged their sons’ creative endeavors and dreams. At age fourteen, Robin wore his first pair of jeans which were vintage patchwork flared jeans that he bought in St. Tropez, France. It was then that his passion for denim was born.

Robin arrived in Los Angeles in 1996 where his skills combined with talent and charm, caught the eye of the best denim companies in Los Angeles. At a time when most denim was designed around basic styles, Robin’s attention to new fabrics, innovative washes and nuanced details made him a rising star in the industry. Having held top design positions at leading denim companies such as Blue Cult, followed by Hudson Jeans, the name Robin Chretien quickly flew to the top of the best denim designers’ lists in the United States.

In 2005, he created Robin’s Jean, which is symbolized by a set of wings. “I came to the United States because I love the US. I make jeans because it’s always been my dream. To make jeans in the country that I love is my dream come true. Where better to make jeans than Los Angeles when your brand has angel wings? I design, produce, and manufacture Robin’s Jean in the U.S.A.” says Robin.

Today, the brand is renowned for it’s biker-chic aesthetic and innovative denim washes. Great attention is taken with each detail from hand embroidery to crystal studding and leather applique. The collection has quickly grown from a line of denim jeans to a range of leather jackets, t-shirts, belts, hats and footwear for men, women, and children. Robin’s Jean is now sought after by a cult-like following of celebrities, fashion stylists, and urban-trendsetters whose work and play blend effortlessly.

In 2011, the first Robin’s Jean Flagship store opened in Beverly Hills, CA. Today, there are currently ten Robin’s Jean Flagship Stores in the top shopping destinations Beverly Hills, CA. Soho, New York; Laguna Beach, CA; Garden State Plaza, Paramus, NJ; Park City, Utah, Orlando, Florida and the first Robin’s Jean international store in Vancouver, Canada. In 2016, new locations have opened in Beverly Center in Los Angeles, CA and Telluride, CO and Roosevelt Field, Garden City, NY. In 2016, plans are to continue to grow the Robin’s Jean brand further in the US with new stores in Houston TX, Tampa FL, Honolulu HI, as well as internationally.

https://robinsjean.com/flagship-stores

Robin’s Jeans

313 North Beverly Drive
Beverly Hills, CA 90210
Tel: (310) 786-7813

CSide View

California Dreamin’

Conjuring up images of Classic California comes to light at a new pop-up boutique in Palm Desert.  CSide is a California laid back easy glamour concept.  From cashmere to camisoles and faux fur to fedoras… showcasing fabulous local designers with the most innovative flair for fashion, art, wellness and designin the desert.  Here’s a sneak peek at some fierce fashion:

Only ONE left of our best selling Alpaca/Wool blend super cozy, chic open front heavy jacquard knit cardigan by @aquariuscocktail.  Acts like a jacket. Sleeves are a little long for cuffing or scrunching, Pockets are lined in navy silk. Throw over a dress, tee or your favorite sweats.  I love this look – goes with everything!  Might be Sold-Out!

CSIDE Pop Up Shop – 73080 El Paseo, Palm Desert, CA.

Private appointments and zoom appointments available .
Mon-Sat 10-6, Sun-11-5 760 845-6813

https://www.facebook.com/csidecalifornia/

https://www.instagram.com/csidecalifornia/

ONE OF A KIND SHOPWebsite coming soon

The dog is not for sale.

Style: on Track

Referring to the track suit as casual weekend wear.  Remember them? Like many things, they’re coming back.

Paris Hilton & Kim Kardashian.  Photo: Courtesy of SKIMS  for Vogue Magazine (October 2020)

After all, they’ve had a successful track record (pun intended) in the past.  They were a wardrobe staple for so long that we took them for granted.  Then they seemingly disappeared, until the need for covid coziness combined with fashion brought this classic option back.

I loved the ubiquitous lazy comfy fit.   Not talking sloppy; more like the “Juicy Couture” loosely fitted style that was so popular in the 90’s.  There were of course many knock-offs, but the Juicy label looked the best.  You could consider them the Lululemon of the track suit world.

When Juicy Couture took over the trend landscape in the late 1990s, original founders Gela-Nash Taylor and Pamela Skaist-Levy knew from the get-go they were poking fun at high fashion. But many women and tons of celebrities wore them as an essential, comparable to the skinny jean or leggings.

Britney Spears (in)famously had a custom set made for all her bridesmaids ahead of her marriage to Kevin Federline. Unfortunately for her, the tracksuit outlasted their marriage.

You could say that Velour Tracksuits are also making a comeback! I’m happy about that because I just bought a pair of flared track pants (with added front seams) from a company in Los Angeles called Garbe Luxe.  They come in velour or soft bamboo cotton fleece which I first saw in Palm Springs and really wanted, but they were sold out.  I was lucky to get a pair recently sent to me.  I must admit I wasn’t sure about wearing velour at first but I guess what goes around comes around.  And they make my butt look good.

https://garbeluxe.com/collections/pants/products/giselle-track-pant
Photo: Courtesy of SKIMS for Vogue Magazine – link below

Garbe Luxe – Casual flared track pants with added front seams make the Giselle Track Pant extra special.

Vogue Article:

https://www.vogue.com/article/skims-velour-collection-kim-kardashian-west-paris-hilton

How do you feel about this look? HIT or MISS?

Butt then again; they’re not for everyone.