Showing posts with label Kate Moss. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Kate Moss. Show all posts

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Girl Guides


Just back from a mini sojourn in Paris. The city was as perfect as ever apart from one traumatic incident on the bumper cars in the Tuileries Gardens with overly aggressive kiddies getting carried away with the bumping aspect of this usually quite staid attraction. When travelling, I claim to like going with the flow but the nerd in me still likes to read up in advance with a good guide book. But which one to choose? Lonely Planet –practical but not pretty, DK Eyewitness – beautiful and informative but do we really need all the 3-D drawings of historical buildings?, Wallpaper Guides – gorgeous but sometimes we need more info that simply which boutique hotels are best. A good alternative to these is Ofr’s Guide Paris which I picked up at the bookshop at the Pompidou Centre. It’s beautifully designed with Sartorialist-chic pics of pretty young Parisians on bikes and smoking cigs by the Seine as well as lots of insider tips. The only drawback is the kinda nonsensical commentary – “Paris is an aphrodisiac bath that will welcome and carry your desires. It feels like life in the countryside, or by the Libyan sea, it's the Corsican freedom..”. Um, whatever you say. Also worth checking out is Ofr’s HQ in Le Marais. As well as being a gallery space, it’s one of the best art/design bookshops in Paris and a great place to get fashion magazines. I think it’s time to plan The Portmanteau’s next mini-break–maybe in October, just in time to catch Rodarte at Colette and the Kate exhib at the Musée des arts Décoratifs. NOK


Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Just Greedy

Gwyneth’s collaboration with her personal trainer, Tracy Anderson, is the last straw. If I had an Oscar, 2 small children, a famous musician husband, properties in London and New York, a website, a cookery show and a few films in the pipeline, I would not bother producing a fitness DVD. What is it with modern celebrities selling out? I can understand selling out that includes posing for Juergen Teller in a Marc Jacobs campaign. That kind of selling out makes sense but bed linen, cheap perfume and fitness DVDs are for ex-Big Brother participants and not Kylie, Kate and Gwyneth respectively. I guess it comes down to keeping up with the Joneses when the Joneses happen to be the Beckhams or the Pitt-Jolies or whoever else celebrities measure themselves against.

There are however a few movie stars out there who manage to maintain a high profile whilst retaining their dignity. Natalie Portman is a good example; she expertly combines appearances in both mainstream and art house movies and her line of vegan shoes seems to demonstrate a desire to do good rather than a desire to get rich(er). One of her latest projects is a kind of fake ad for a fictional perfume called Greed. Directed by Roman Polanski and starring Natalie and my other favourite actress, Michelle Williams, the fake ad is part of an exhibition at the Gagosian Gallery in Rome by Italian artist, Francesco Vezzoli, which examines the strategy behind a perfume launch. You can view a trailer for the ad on Dazed Digital or the gallery's website and you will be able to watch the piece in its entirety after the exhibition opens on the 6th February. Finally, a celebrity perfume launch that we can get behind.



Images from the Gagosian Gallery website

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

One shop we're not so fond of.....

The Mirror is today reporting that Sienna Miller was “airbrushed to within an inch of her life” for American Vogue’s September ‘07 cover according to the documentary, The September Issue. Like, duh. Sienna’s camp has sensibly responded to the furore, stating that Sienna is always airbrushed for magazine covers. Anybody who has ever stepped inside a newsagent will know that it is not only Sienna who has undergone some photoshopping for American Vogue. Kate Moss was barely recognisable when she graced the cover of the Age issue last August, her skin a creepy orange colour and her eyes devoid of any kind of life. I fully understand magazines retouching pictures to remove the odd spot or obliterate some downy fluff but when the subjects cease to look like themselves, you have to wonder if photoshopping has gone too far. The King of the retouching tool is Pascal Dangin - in one issue of US Vogue (March 2008) alone he doctored 107 ads and 36 editorial images along with rendering Drew Barrymore virtually unrecognizable on the cover. Magazines are quick to defend the practice, claiming that people don’t expect reality when they buy a fashion magazine. Alexandra Shulman has been quoted as saying “We are not in the business of portraying reality all the time and people buy magazines like Vogue in order to look at a kind of perfection.”

Fair enough, but the thing is I don’t find thinned noses, sharpened jaw lines and strangely elongated legs perfect. The most beautiful portraits of Kate Moss or Sienna Miller are not those in which they look the least real. The photos of Sienna and Savannah Miller in August 2007's British Vogue didn’t prompt feelings of envy at their perfection or a desire to rush out and buy the Twenty8Twelve clothes they were modelling, but rather a bewildered curiosity at how the retouching team thought that anybody would believe that those were actually Savannah’s thighs. The delicate and natural portraits by Corinne Day - a photographer famed for her raw style - were merely diluted by the overuse of photoshop.


Kate on the cover of American Vogue


Savannah Miller in British Vogue

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Colouring-in the January Blues

It’s a depressing time of year. Obviously. Dealing with work-related emails that didn’t magically disappear over Christmas, facing up to the fact that the resolutions haven’t even lasted a week and battling the freezing cold weather all takes their toll on a person. Not to mention arguments over deposits with ex-landlords and rows with current landlords about having no running water. Early January is horrible and I plan to spend it tucked up in bed with the electric blanket turned up all the way (mainly because I squandered all of last month’s salary in a devil-may-care Christmas spending extravaganza and can no longer afford to venture outside).

At least I have my lovely Christmas presents to keep me company. I can pore over my beautiful Stylist The Interpreters of Fashion book, a present from the boyfriend. Or look forward to my mini-break at Bellinter House thanks to my mum. Most therapeutic of all though is my Colour Me Good colouring book that comes courtesy of my other The Portmanteau half. Colour Me Good – Kate is a lovely little colouring book full of pictures of Kate in various magazine poses that I can colour-in carefully, thereby forgetting about the larger problems in life. The terrifying bank statement is left unopened as I endeavour to not go outside the lines of Kate’s lovely hair or the fancy crown that she wore on the cover of December 2001's Vogue. Colour Me Good comes from the talented Mel Elliott, a London-based artist who is almost as obsessed with magazines and celebrities as we are. She has created colouring books and paper dolls based on all of our favorites – Kate, Aggy, Cheryl, Grazia, etc, etc. She is stocked in Artwords in London (there are more outlets in the pipeline) or you can buy from her directly through her blog.

Picture from Mel Elliott (because I am not nearly as good at colouring-in).

Friday, November 14, 2008

Transatlantic Trip-ups

I’ve been back on home turf for almost a week now but I've only just stopped moaning about my jet lag and the time difference and all the other hideous effects of long haul flights! In my defence, I did suffer more than most due to the violent food poisoning I contracted on my last night after dining at supposed Hollywood hot spot, La Poubelle, but I still marvel at celebrities’ stamina. Yes, they travel first class but they have to step off the eleven hour flight looking as refreshed as ever unless they want to face the wrath of the tabloids.

When Kate Moss arrived at LAX for a holiday a couple of weeks ago, The Daily Mail remarked, “Her complexion was blighted by spots and a cold sore appeared to have surfaced on her upper lip.” Whoa there – I mean I arrived home in a Venice Beach hoodie with cracked lips and crazy frizzy/greasy hair - flying is hard work, you know. Victoria Beckham was also papped at LAX recently but her look was slightly more put together - a weird Sherlock Holmes-style ensemble that looked somewhat ridiculous and seriously uncomfortable. Obviously I don’t recommend sacrificing style completely and I feel obliged to point out the hoodie incident was a once-off but I think that there should at least be an nod to comfort when flying.

And so I think we must look to the jet-setting Olsens for inspiration on fashionable flying. They are photographed at airports more often than at parties and have the whole just-stepped-off-a-plane-but-still-look-like-myself thing down pat. Yeah sure some would say they look a little bedraggled but give me that over the über-groomed VB any day.

Plane Stupid

Olsens at the Airport