Would You Wear Agyness Deyn's Clothing Line?

8.20.2014


Because she has one, and it's sort of unisex. Dubbed Title A, Deyn told The Cut that the line is inspired by, "Katharine Hepburn and Patti Smith [ed. note: you can see this one in the AW14 campaign images, above] and how guys used to dress in the '90s; the list is endless. Annie Hall. Even in the 1900s, how women used to wear big overcoats over their dresses and things. It kind of comes from everywhere, really." It's not a bad list, and I'd be lying if I said Annie Hall hasn't been a style touchstone for me many a morning. Deyn also references Dries Van Noten in her interview, and his influence is obviously felt in outfits such as the one below—a standout Chesterfield wool coat ($450) layered over a smoking jacket ($375) and slouchy tee ($79).


The suiting elements in the collection definitely smack of Margaret Howell, which is never a bad thing.


But I wonder if Deyn could've pushed her conceit a bit more? It feels a little too of the moment, and lacks a certain je nais se quoi. "I’ve always worn boys' clothes growing up and menswear all the time, but I feel like this is slightly different," she told The Cut. "It has sexy dressing...it’s kind of that cross between how Mick Jagger and Kurt Cobain wore women’s clothes that kind of fit. At the moment, there’s kind of a non-gender. Some guys actually dress more feminine than women in their tight jeans and T-shirts and things like that...so, I feel like it’s not just like, 'Oh, we’re making a menswear collection in the burn-your-bra-feminism way'. It’s more of embracing femininity with whatever you wear, like the silk dresses."

It still reads a bit like a COS/Zara mash-up on screen, but maybe once I got my hands on a few pieces I'd be a convert. But shout out to the 'non-gendered' karma!

Campaign photography via Title A; lookbook photography (below) © Dana Boulos.

P.S. Do you remember Deyn's Williamsburg apartment in WOI? I ask because it was pretty spectacular and when else am I going to have good reason to reference it? Here's a small taste:


I didn't realize, but she sold it a few years ago for $2.5 million. It was designed by Ricky Clifton, whose work is divisively good (the photo above is from the listing, not the magazine). You can read up on the apartment and Clifton here.

    Karina Bania & the Creative Process

    8.15.2014

    Artwork by Karina Bania

    Karina Bania is an artist whose work I've pinned without realizing it—which I feel bad about, but I haven't yet figured out a workaround for other people's sloppy pinning habits. Source things properly, people! Luckily I stumbled upon her work (again) and did a little reading up on her background—turns out she's a self-taught painter with a degree in business. Her work, to me, is very visceral. It's about color and composition and abstraction. I like that. I like it for the same reasons I was drawn to the Jack Ramsey piece I have, 'Sunslide'.

    Artwork by Karina Bania

    And while I'm usually not one for inspirational quotes, something Bania had to say in one of her recent blog posts really resonated with me: "I make mistakes constantly. My mistakes are what generally lead me to some of the best places my work has gone and definitely some of the most enjoyable moments of working. But many pieces go nowhere. Many times I leave the studio with nothing to show for it but the act of creating. And that is enough. Everything doesn’t always have to be 'something.'"

    I think I take that for granted constantly in the city, and more generally on the internet and social media. Things don't have to be "something." Things don't have to be finished. Despite the fact that never before in my life have I felt like so many eyes are watching me. There's always this potential for that one thing you tweet or share or even simply 'like' to somehow come to define you in one way or another. And it's so easy for people to engage with one itty bitty facet of yourself that you've put out there and get the wrong impression. It feels like every part of yourself that you make available online (and what isn't online?) needs to be polished. And finished. And the best.

    Artwork by Karina Bania

    But that's—hopefully—not true.

    Hopefully we can still be three-dimensional and still be creative while making mistakes and tweeting the wrong things and Instagramming less than perfect pictures and realize that we're not declaring Who We Are, realize that we're not done, even though it can seem that way. So maybe it's archived for all eternity (unless the Internet breaks?), but we have to have the opportunity to learn from those moments we share that are less than perfect, and have the freedom to go nowhere but not be defined by dead ends.

    Why I'm Newly Obsessed with OLO

    8.13.2014

    I feel like I've been searching for my "signature scent" for, oh, I don't know...26 years? The first frag purchase I remember—vividly—was Ralph Lauren's Polo Blue. I asked for it for Christmas one year and doused myself in it, assured by the model's harmless, inert gaze that I was destined to become a 'new classic', long before Iggy Azalea would co-opt the term to describe a middling R&B record. I think I even had the body wash at one point, though even reflecting on that olfactory overload makes me gag a little.

    OLO Fragrances

    More recently I've scoured many a niche fragrance purveyor in the hopes that I would find something that speaks to who I am now. Something complex, moody, and a little bit spicy. Something...from Portland. Yes, Portland is where I found my new fragrance obsession, albeit by way of the Erica Weiner boutique in SoHo. OLO's Dark Wave is a blend of cardamom, Indonesian vetivert and wood. It was created, "to kick off the dreary rains [that] inundate Portland for nine months...to envelop you and protect you from the downpour." If that description isn't sufficiently angsty for you, watch this music video.

    OLO Fragrances

    OLO founder Heather Sielaff (above left, kissing her cat) is a self-taught perfumer with a background in aromatherapy, i.e. she spent ten years working with essential oils before getting into the perfume business, i.e. I'm sporting a major granola-boner for her right now. All of OLO's scents are hand-blended and come with a handy-dandy roller ball applicator. Sielaff even once made a custom scent for YACHT, and YACHT is awesome, so...bow down, bitches. Or, like, go shopping.

    Image (top) via The Line; images (bottom) via Portland Supply Co.

    P.S. Some other contenders to the stank throne have included D.S. & Durga's Poppy Rouge (the last frag I went through—still love this one, actually), Comme des Garçons Black, and Etat Libre d'Orange's Like This.

    Farm to Table Baby

    8.11.2014


    I royally suck at cooking. I do. But I'm stubborn and I like the idea of cooking and being self-sufficient in that neo-homesteader, Pinteresty sort of way. And I enjoy cooking, whether or not I'm good at it.


    Most of what I eat at home is vegetarian, honestly out of personal preference (the best meal I've had all season was a salad from Romans, though it should be noted that burrata was involved.) And I feel like I've eaten my body weight in kale over the last few months. I rely pretty heavily on eggs (and occasionally peanut butter) for protein, and can now incorporate them into almost any meal—as long as it involves carbs. (Is butter a carb?) Two particular favorites: roasted asparagus with an egg on top and a rice bowl with fried egg and avocado, which is sort of a whitewashed version of bibimbap. (I also really love this cheap and easy recipe for a poor man's spaghetti carbonara.) You can see more of what I'm eating on Pinterest, duh.


    Original photography © Dabito / This Fruit Blogs. Recipe photos via How Sweet Eats and Bon Appétit.

    Tokyobike Lovefest

    8.09.2014


    Have you guys heard of Tokyobike? They have an outpost in NYC for the summer (it closes August 30) and I am incredibly tempted to run down there and buy a bike. Every day after work the thought crosses my mind. Mostly because they're really cute, but also because...they're really cute. Is $700 a lot for a bike? I feel like it isn't, but I haven't ridden one since college and am pretty well in the dark on these matters. Do we think it'd get stolen? Maybe I'm getting ahead of myself...


    The model I most like is the Bisou, which I would get in navy, because navy is the best. NYC has this summer streets thing where they shut down all of the traffic and encourage people to bike, jog, etc., so I it just feels like now is the time to go bike shopping. Thoughts?

    Back to Basics / Down to Business

    8.08.2014

    Matt Lenz design

    You guys haven't heard from me in over a month, isn't that crazy? I had my/am having a quarter-life crisis, the result of which is that I've moved this blog back to the Blogger platform so that I can host my photography portfolio on the insanely expensive and disappointing-for-blogging Squarespace site I purchased. I bought this lovely, simple theme from Ana and am excited to just have an outlet again for sharing what's on my mind.

    There will be a few tweaks from here on out, for sure. I'm not going to have this focus on personal style, for one. I just don't have the time and it isn't a priority. It's not on my mind, but so much else is. And I felt that blogging was kind of holding me back from pursuing other creative interests, but after some time away I feel like I know how to better balance my interests and work towards some real career goals. I'm having my friend Ben help me whip up some business cards, so you may have seen me pinning some of those lately. I've rounded up a few of my favorite finds here, from Matt Lenz (above) and designer Tim George for Nick Leith-Smith (below). I'm sure that once those are done (once my portfolio is a real thing) I'll share them on Instagram, so be on the lookout.

    Tim George design
     

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