Tuesday, 30 November 2010

John Varvatos x Converse

It was about 8 years ago that I bought my first pair of Converse sneakers. Yet they were not the traditional Chuck Taylor high or low tops, but a pair of limited edition John Varvatos for Converse, bought at a boutique in Durham City. I think this may have been my the start of a serious sneaker addiction that has been well documented here.

With close, almost emotional, ties with the collaboration, I am pleased to see that the rugged, all American look has not wavered. The distressed look may instantly give the impression they have been kicked, scuffed and lived in for two or three years, but retaining a strong identity.

I am not always a great fan of sneaker collaberations because they often stray from the true stylistic aesthetic of the brand. However, I think this is a strong one and I would love to get my hands on - and feet in - both of these pairs. OK, they may look a little juvenile with the printed soles but no body is really going to see those, are they?

These pairs are available at ASOS and are priced at £90 (for the red stripe) and £110 (for the grey).

Monday, 29 November 2010

J W Anderson Charity T-shirt x HERO

Thank you for all your competition entries over the past few days, over 400 of you entered. After a lot of cutting out of names and choosing the old fashioned way - out of a hat - the winner is Hunter Cordell from Fort Worth, Texas. Hunter, the first issue of your prize is on its way! 

HERO is not only an awesome magazine brimming with new model talent and desirable designers, it's also a giving one. In collaboration with London's most sought after designer, J W Anderson, the magazine is selling these charity dip-dye t-shirts in aid of MIND, the mental health charity. 

This is such a great charity chosen by Jonathan Anderson as 3 in 10 people in the UK are effected with some variation of mental health problems every year. With these statistics in mind, it is likely that you will know somebody with such issues, ranging from depression to obsessive compulsive disorder. 

These t-shirts, above, are going to sell quick - and that's not hard as they are from a great designer and for an even great charity, providing help for those with and for the research and awareness of mental health. 

Priced £80, the t-shirts can be found and bought here

Thursday, 25 November 2010

HERO Magazine EXCLUSIVE Preview & EXCLUSIVE Competition

HERO launched to much fanfare as a bible of the hottest model talent of tomorrow, as well as featuring an array of visually stunning fashion spreads. With humorous yet deeply insightful interviews and unrivaled features documenting the most desirable labels from, like LSoD, London and beyond. 

I have blogged about the magazine before because guys who feature in the magazine will be those who you will seen on the runway and in campaigns in the season's to come. More over they are wearing the likes of J W Anderson, Katie Eary, Vintage Versace and Prada which accentuates their desirability.

What's more, HERO has featured some of the best and talented photographers around including Robbie Spencer, Andreas Larrson and Stefan Heinrichs to produce the newest and freshest stories in menswear, art and general hottness.  

I highly recommend adding them on Facebook here, and checking out their site too for some extra features and previews. 

So with all that in mind, HERO is giving away a years subscription of the magazine EXCLUSIVELY to one Last Style of Defense reader! Details after the pictures. 

One lucky Last Style of Defense reader will win a years subscription (Winter/Spring 10/11 and Summer/Autumn 11) by answering this simple question:

HERO was launched in which year?

All you have to do is email me - the address is on the top right of the page - before Sunday 28th November at 11.00am GMT with the correct answer, along with your name and full postal address. 

The competition is open to everyone, where ever you are in the World.

 Entries received after the cut off time will not be entered. Your details will not be shared with any one except HERO magazine for the sole purpose of you receiving your prize. 

Wednesday, 24 November 2010

LA Diary: OK Store is More Than OK

If you look outside the city center, outside of the hustle and bustle of the frequented retail areas, there are gems to be found - literally. OK Store, situated in the outskirts of Downtown Los Angeles, is the second opening of the destination boutique for design lovers. 

It stocks a quirky, ultra modern yet homey pieces of interior design and practical home wares but it is the jewelry and accessories that really stand out for me. There is a stunning array of unisex and men's pieces that are instantly desirable, mostly due to the raw quality and feel of the pieces. A lot of the pieces are made by Los Angeles designers so these really hold the essence of the city, and the accessories have that stylistic simplicity that the city has come to be about. 

The small 500 square foot store, owned by Larry Schaffer, is only open Thursday to Sunday but he has picked out a selection of pieces that are not available at the main store near the Beverly Centre at Third West Street. 

Take a look and you will see this store is more than OK - visit at 1724 1/2 Silver Lake Blvrd, Los Angeles or shop online.

Lena Wald - Wish Bone in 14 kt Yellow Gold

Lena Wald - Key Necklace in Silver 

Sarah Graham - Wide Pebble Ring in Oxidized Steel

Sarah Graham - Wide Shadow Band in Oxidized Steel

Rebecca Overman - Circle Necklace in Oxidized Silver and 14 kt Yellow Gold

Dosa Pouch in Large

Alice Park Wallet 

Urban Outfitters 20% Off

Well, its getting that time of the year when a good discount is always welcome when thinking of Chirstmas presents for friends, family or yourself. So Urban Outfitters is offering a whacking great 20%off tomorrow on all online purchases.  

The offer is only for tomorrow, Thursday 24th, and until 12 midnight GMT. All you have to do is enter the promo code TODAYONLY at checkout. 

Happy shopping! 

Tuesday, 23 November 2010

Jean Clemmer x Paco Rabanne Exhibition

Pop Up stores, temporary retail outlets that open in random locations, are not new however pop up galleries are. The latest to open is the Flash Projects inaugural space that opens on Thursday (26th November) exhibiting 'Canned Candies: The Nudes of Jean Clemmer'.  
The visionary and in hindsight, modern, images explore fantasy, sensuality and haute couture in 1960s Paris and included the iconic collaboration between Clemmer and designer Paco Rabanne from 1969. 

This is also a celebratory exhibit, staged to commemorate the 50th anniversary of Canned Candies which was first published in Paris in 1969 under the name Nues, meaning naked. Yet this is the first time in which the UK has hosted an original collaboration between the two legendary names in French artistic and fashion culture plus a wider range of Clemmer's female form studies. 

And whilst this exhibit is an event in itself, it coincides with the London Fashion in Film Festival for which the involvement of Rabanne's famed futuristic rhodoid and era fits perfectly. This iconic period explores the utopian dreams, and dare say hopes, of an aluminum chain-mail realm of science fiction and fantasy. These were styled and captured by Clemmer using nude models 'dressed' in Rabanne's then unwearable fashions which depicted and epitomised  the growing freedom of sexuality of the 1960s and it's height in 1969. 

The publication Canned Candies was a groundbreaking piece of photographic journalism, using black and Asian models, unheard of across the industry at the time. It was originally launched at the iconic Crazy Horse Saloon in Paris with a flourish of naked dancers and an abundance of cocktails which caused an immediate scandal against morals and sensation. 

Clemmer was a photographer who captured the essence of a lost era; the sensuality, the spectacle and the pleasure of human form when the time was about sexual freedom and gratification. This is a must see exhibition, not only to see two of the biggest names in French and contemporary culture, but to see how a woman captures a form traditionally taken by a man. 

For more information visit www.flash-projects.co.uk to see more images by other photographers, including the picture of Mick Jagger above. 

Monday, 22 November 2010

LSoD Guest Blog for Garment Quarter

Being part of a brand, label or store that you feel passionate about is a great reward in blogging. So it was a pleasure to be asked to blog for Garment Quarter, which is one of the hottest multi-brand boutiques in Bristol, in the south-west region of England.  It holds an incredible selection of some of the hottest designers available in the UK. 

I was asked to pick some pieces and tie it to a theme, and seeing as we are so close to Christmas, it was the obvious one to pick. It starts like this, below, and you can read the rest on the Garment Quarter blog. 

As the nights get darker, colder and the Coca Cola advert has aired on television, it is safe to say that Christmas is truly on its way. Traditionally a time for a pallet of red and green, chunky knits or jumpers with seasonal motifs, this year the festive period need not be so traditional or garish. Whilst the autumn/winter season trends for men are military focused, these are the pieces at GarmentQuarter online that can be incorporated into the aesthetic, with a few on-trend off-shoots....

To read the rest, click here.

Domingo Rodriguez x ASOS

I have been sitting on this story for a while as I think ASOS wouldn't have been too happy with me but I am pleased to be able to give you a look at the MA}ke collection by Domingo Rodriguez. A design initiative between the London College of Fashion and the e-retailer, which will be sold online from next week. There is a womenswear designer in the partnership, which has been released today but the menswear will be delayed by a week. 

This is such a simple but powerful collection with nudes, grey and white at the heart of its pallet with a focus on tailoring. I am a huge fan of Domingo Rodriguez and am looking forward to its drop online. 

England Rugby x Eden Park Tailoring

For a long time now, the Nation's football teams have been fitted out in some sharp tailoring from both designer and classic brands such as Paul Smith for the England National squad. But this time it is the England rugby squad who have been kitted out courtesy of Eden Park.

This exclusive video above shows the two day's it took to fit the team at their training ground, Pennyhill Park in Surrey which, according to Dany Care, took quite a while, “We spent hours deliberating over every detail including the fabric of the shirt and the width of the ties.” “We wanted to get it just right, and the guys helped us every step of the way. We’re delighted with the final outfits; it’s good to have
Eden Park on board.”

The suit, featuring a grey single breasted jacket with red lining, is accompanied by a skinny red tie,
white shirt and wool-cashmere overcoat with lapel piping. Ugo Monye and Danny’s input in designing
he outfit included a subtle red rose embroidered onto the tongue of the on-trend pointy black shoes.

Thursday, 18 November 2010

Christmas has Arrived at The Shop at Bluebird

It's cold, it's dark and three nights ago the Coca Cola 'Holiday's Are Coming' advert aired on TV - so that must only mean that ti's nearly the season to be jolly. As Cyber Monday- where the Nation goes e-shopping - is nearly upon us, it is worth coming out from the warm to the Christmas shop at The Bluebird in London's Chelsea. The Kings Road emporium is a super chic boutique of a huge selection of porducts for men (and women) but these below are great ideas. 

I can't wait to pop in to grab some ideas and/or gifts! 

Opening Ceremony x Disney's Tron

One sector of world industries that you wouldn't expect Disney to push into is fashion, but they have with this collection. In collaboration with Opening Ceremony, the Disney Consumer Product arm of the Walt Disney Group has asked two designers, Humberto Leon and Carol Lim to pay homage to the remake of the iconic film 'Tron'. The remake, 'Tron - Legacy' stars Olivia Wilde and Jeff Bridges opens in a month so this collection is an exclusive pre-souvenir which went on sale yesterday which ranged from £145 to £360. Not only is it on sale at America's achingly cool afore mentioned store, but Colette in Paris and Lane Crawford in Hong Kong. 

There is an accompanying women's collection, but here the mens features some very bright colored racer jackets and trousers in Tron's signature pallets. Over looking the Disney influence, this, I think, is a very exciting and fashion-forward collection using an interesting range of fabrics such as neoprene. The cut of the racer jackets immediately below appear to have a great cut and fit, however, the trousers are a little bit too high-waisted for my taste.  Over all, I think a great capsule collection from two amazing designers. 

Wednesday, 17 November 2010

GANT: A Look Behind the New Collection

I featured the latest Gant collection from GANT here a month or so ago, which is a well styled and of course designed offering from Michael Bastian. Take a look at the intriguing and informative video talking to Bastain about the current collection, which is worth the few minutes it runs.

Monday, 15 November 2010

LA Diary: Dirtee Hollywood

There are many t-shirts brands or companies that I often look at and just sigh in, well, boredom. It's not that they are dull, but there are far, far to many that are often novelty with no style. I love a good printed t-shirt, worn in a relaxed style, that makes a statement or gives a humorous nod to current fashion or lifestyle news.

One brand that does such a thing is Dirtee Hollywood, a cult brand with a huge celebrity following, which redefines Hollywood culture as a global lifestyle. Founded in 2007 by David Long, the t-shirt label that has topical wit that has some of LA's coolest kids supporting the creativity and long-term vision of the label.

Dirtee Hollywood is 100% American made in the US of LA and has expanded in true Hollywood fashion; checking into rehab with Clean Hollywood. Supported by the cast of Twilight and Glee, Adam Lambert, Jay Sean and of course Hollywood royalty Paris Hilton and Miley Cyrus and is stocked in Atrium, Kitson and Fred Segal - as well as being distributed all over the world.

Golden Goose x The Corner

The tale of the Golden Goose was one of my favorite childhood tall-tales, mainly because the Golden Goose featured in Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. But this Golden Goose is no tall-tale and is delectable as a chocolate egg. 

Having launched at The Corner earlier this month, the Golden Goose collection is a unisex capsule offering the forward thinking, eye catching pieces that has made his a cult brand over the past decade. 
But what's great about this collection is the exclusivity it holds at The Corner, part of Yoox.com, and its influences. 

The collection pays great attention to detail in the Viennese materials in all these limited edition pieces, and for this collection, entitled 'Journey Around the Corners', looks at the different elements of travel. Further more, the brand as a whole takes inspiration from 'street art' and reinterprets it in a definitively innovative and creative way. 

The brand was launched in 2000 by Alessandro and Francesca Gallo who simply love the worlds of fashion and art. Like many brands, they wanted to produce clothes that represented their own personal style yet could not appropriate labels to do just that. As I see, and I hope you do too, is the creativity and refined processes that reflect the desirability of the brand, making this a hott, hott label to be a part of. 

To shop the Golden Goose collection, click here.