Showing posts with label Chanel. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Chanel. Show all posts

Monday, September 13, 2010

The News

Usually the day after a big bash, when all the best celebs have been trussed up by whichever designer whose store opening or show they’re attending, my other The Portmanteau half and I spend the morning sending emails about just how “crap”, “ridiculous” and “overdone” everybody looked. Not so last Thursday after the Chanel boutique opening in NY. Hosted by Karl Lagerfeld, obvs, the event attracted Alexa, Diane Kruger, Rachel Bilson, the Gossip Girls - basically all the peeps you’d expect. And everybody looked amazing. Blake Lively had, thankfully, put away her cleavage for the night and opted for a sparkly lilac and silver dress that was so different – and so much better – than the poor man’s Sienna/slightly slutty looks she usually goes for. Alexa actually smiled in a photo and reminded me of just how beautiful she is. But Diane Kruger – Lagerfeld’s muse – must take the prize for best dressed of the evening. The ruffles, the little boots, the hair (hairband included) – I loved it all. The only dud was Claire Danes who looked like a typical WASP in her mumsy jeans and jacket combo and her too-perfect honey-coloured hairdid. But I guess the weird thing about Danes is that she is, by her own admission, a WASP. She was born to affluent yet creative parents and attended the Dalton School so it sort of makes sense that there she is, turning up to Manhattan openings in Chanel jackets. It’s just strange to think of Angela Chase – who Danes portrayed beautifully in the best TV show ever (well besides Mad Men, Come Dine With Me and Sex and the City) My So-Called Life – heading off to the manicurist and booking bi-monthly touch-ups at the hair salon at Bergdorfs. Angela Chase’s dyed red hair, pale skin and oversized plaid shirts continue to be a style influence sixteen years on and is perhaps a look that the über-groomed Danes could do with channelling.

New York grooming is the subject of an article in this month’s Vogue. Vicky Ward writes about how, after moving to New York from London, she abandoned the opaque tights she was so reliant on and opted for all-year-round waxing and fake tanning so as to show off her legs in cocktail dresses, even when Central Park was enveloped in snow or the rain was pouring down on City Hall. And, yeah, I get it. I mean I love the easiness of tights; I love how your skirt can be indecently short and it doesn’t matter because you have two pairs of 80 denier on. I love tights for their cosiness, their forgiving nature as they bundle and pack up your flesh. But I also think New Yorkers are right: tanned, toned, bare legs are infinitely sexier and compliment most dresses far better than their covered up counterpart. As Ward points out, “many of autumn’s trends just don’t work with tights.”

Alexa – who divides her time between New York and London – has obviously picked up on the NY attitude to tights because I can’t remember the last time she was spotted in a pair. Carey Mulligan – US Vogue’s October cover girl – highlighted the differing attitude that Londoners have to tights when she turned up the Met Ball in a pair. Nobody turns up the Met Ball in tights - well actually Winona Ryder did two years ago and looked terrible – but nobody else. The Met Ball is a place for glamour and unachievable muscle tone and silly LED dresses; it is not an event for dull types who have boring concerns like feeling the cold or inadvertently showing their knickers. And by wearing tights, the usually beautiful Mulligan managed to look kind of dowdy. Think of it this way: have you ever seen Carrie Bradshaw – the apotheosis of New York style – in a pair of tights? No, you haven’t.

Carey Mulligan at May's Met Ball

In the newspapers, there are lots of nice stories about the Mitfords as Deborah Mitford (or Debo or the Duchess of Devonshire or whatever) is publishing her memoirs. Now, I already know most of it but it’s always fun to read about the Mitfords. The Guardian had an especially nice interview today. Camille Paglia took issue with Gaga in yesterday’s Sunday Times, as I’m sure you have been made aware of. I liked Alex Needham’s response on the Guardian website because a) he pointed out that Gaga isn’t trying to be sexy (duh!), and b) he brought my attention to this amazing fax spat that existed between Camille Paglia and Julie Burchill. I was a child living in a small town in Ireland when the row occurred, so this was my first reading but wow! I have never seen such bitchy letters, besides perhaps those exchanged between a particularly loathsome letting agent and myself. LE

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Advertising Fashion

Another day, another ad masquerading as a short film/piece of art/etc. Just a fortnight after the Audrey Tautou develops irrational crush on weird stranger whilst wearing Chanel on train film comes a Dior short featuring my other favourite French actress, Marion Cotillard. Marion is as beautiful and radiant as you would expect and the (former) production assistant/researcher in me applauds their Eiffel Tower location but I am not wowed by this offering, just as I didn't really enjoy the Chanel No 5 advert. The Lady Dior bag looks quite nice if you're into really expensive bags but I would have expected a more interesting piece from director Olivier Dahan, who also directed La Vie en Rose. I know that advertising is a wholly crucial cog in the fashion wheel and without it there would be no Vogue or other glossies (see the chapter on advertising in Hadley Freeman's The Meaning of Sunglasses), but I do think that there is room for creativity in this short film format. Take Somers Town, the Shane Meadows directed feature that derived most of its budget from the Eurostar, for example. OK so there is that awkward moment where the hard-drinking dad stops brawling to discuss the amazing train that goes under the sea or something, but otherwise you get a beautiful film examining teenage friendship starring the brilliantly talented, if not quite as photogenic as Audrey or Marion, Thomas Turgoose.

But maybe I'm just being naive and unrealistic as below are a couple of comments from the Chanel No 5 ad on YouTube.

its now officially my favorite commercial. it makes me really want to check this perfume out.

Aww. This is definately why I wear Chanel No5

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Casting Coco

Coco Avant Chanel opens in French cinemas today, which just gives me anther reason to wish I lived in Paris. I've long been a fan of Audrey Toutou although admittedly I have never actually liked any of her films - Amelie (too saccharine), The Da Vinci Code (I don't really have to explain this one) - but she is very pretty and French, ergo I am a fan. I am sure Coco herself would also approve - apparently she was a little peeved by the casting of Katherine Hepburn in the 60s Broadway musical, Coco - but I don't think that anybody could fail to be flattered by Audrey Tautou being cast in one's biopic. Whilst on the subject of casting biopics, why do journalists always ask that question of celebrities - who would play you in a movie of your life? Obviously the interviewee, even if they are some crap celebrity like Michelle Heaton, is going to say Natalie Portman. If they are older, they will say Meryl Streep. Only she could portray the intricate complexities of my multi-faceted personality, they think to themselves.