Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Tokyo Fashion Week - Fur Fur's Fall 2010 Rapture

Tokyo Fashion Week is always the one I look forward to the most in the global round of fashion shows. Fur Fur presented a fantasy shipwreck themed runway last season. This season, it was all about saints, angels and possibly the rapture. Designer Aya Furuhashi showed elaborate concoctions of lace, ruffles and crucifixes that looked like they were ripped right from the church walls. The models looked somber, even stricken. With what? I can't be sure. Nonetheless, it was a beautiful, dramatic presentation.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Altuzarra's Fall 2010 Collection Makes the Cut

Joseph Altuzarra is a designer who is split between Paris and New York. His collection is a blend of wearable clothing for real women and the contemporary couture sensibility of European craftsmanship.
In his presentation for Fall 2010, he named "Edward Scissorhands" as his muse. The clothing was a luxe mix of rich red velvet, black leather, fur and lacing. The theme of stitched together seams and slashed sexiness was evident.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Fashion Down the Rabbit Hole

Curiouser and curiouser. Dances of Vice always brings out the most fabulously attired citizens of Gotham. The Wonderland in Spring ball Friday night was a tremendous evening of dancing music, seductive aerial and burlesque acts and an intriguing musician and muse creating tunes from some kind of electrode machine.
What was truly entertaining however, were the the guests of the ball. Ladies AND gentleman were draped in their finest Gothic threads and Alice in Wonderland themed ensembles. I had never seen so many handsome men dressed in variations of the Mad Hatter. They were all elegant, flamboyant yet still handsomely masculine. The ladies ranged from theatrically avant-garde to historically enhanced.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Kat Swank's Luxe Goth Accessories for Liaison

Do you have a day job that prevents you from wearing the fabulously flamboyant outfits you know you prefer to wear?  Don't worry, you can always count on accessories to express your true self.
I can't think of a more beautiful way to do that than Kat Swank's Liaison Collection.

Using feathers, antique lace and vintage flowers, the designer creates hats, cuffs for ankles and wrists.  Rocker Courtney Love counts herself as a fan.  Check out her online shop here.

Friday, March 19, 2010

Lolita Fashion in San Francisco - Baby The Stars Shine Bright

Tired of having to fly all the way to Japan for your Gothic and Lolita needs? If you are on the West Coast, the popular boutique and girly fashion brand has opened its first U.S. flagship store. Baby The Stars Shine Bright has a great shopping blog that features their favorite customers in their newly acquired outfits. If you are in North America, but unable to visit the store in person, you can contact them about ordering directly.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Blasphemina's Closet Presents Wonderland in Spring

Were you sufficiently wowed by Tim Burton's 3D Alice?  I can do you one better... How about spending this Friday night in a fantasy spring ball inspired by the story?
Time Out NY's most fabulous New Yorker Shien Lee, together with fashion designer Samantha Rei are collaborating to produce a magical evening of fairy tale fashion shows, aerial acts, burlesque and an avant-garde chamber rock orchestra.
Shien Lee's Dances of Vice has put on many of New York's most stylish events, including the Shipwreck Ball . Ms. Rei's collection, Blasphemina's Closet is a lovely mixture of Gothic and Lolita
She has also recently started a menswear collection to accompany the women's line.
When was the last time you dressed up and were entertained in such grand style?  Come join me (oh yes, I'll be there) and enjoy  the "liberating effects of nonsense, beauty, and surrealism".
Enjoy performances from This Ambitious Orchestra, with special performing guests ZooG von Rock as Master of Ceremonies, Corleonis on theremin, aerial and burlesque performances by the stunning Veruca Honeyscotch and Rita MenWeep. Admire the glamor of fetish, Gothic, and Steampunk fashion shows featuring the work of Blasphemina’s Closet, Kristin Costa, I Do Declare, Apatico and Bionic Unicorn.

Photos by aestheticalalchemy.com and Drayke Larson - photosynthetique.com

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Addams Family on Broadway - A Review

I couldn't wait for the official opening, I had to attend the show in its first week of previews. The verdict? Loved it. Now, in more detail...

From the opening notes of the well-known theme, any Addams Family fan was filled with adrenaline. The curtains paredt with a live portrait of the entire family. The elaborate sets were as much the stars of the show as the performers. (This is not a slight to the actors, but a compliment to the production designers).

Bebe Neuwirth, I can think of no stage actress more suited to the role of Morticia, but the show is clearly commanded by Nathan Lane's Gomez. Keeping the emotional heart of the show was a whimsical Kevin Chamberlain as Uncle Fester.

The basic plot revolves around a grown-up Wednesday Addams (Krysta Rodriguez). She has fallen in love with a (gasp!) 'normal' boy from Ohio, and is bringing his parents to meet the Addams.

I was afraid the overall spirit of creepy and kooky would be watered down for the mass audiences of Broadway. Fortunately, I found the first half of the show's humor deliciously dark (and twisted!). The second half of the show however, wandered back into more conventional musical theater structure. There were several "emotional" family scenes meant to tug at your heart strings that played it pretty straight. Perhaps this was for the benefit of those who were thrown on edge at the first act?

The biggest laughs definitely came from Jackie Hoffman's Grandma. The reputation that preceded her is that she improvises many of her lines during the show. Her prolific jaw can drop as much as yours will at some of the gags coming out of her mouth.

A fantastic 'romantic' scene with Uncle Fester and the moon doesn't exactly move along the story, but the puppetry and effects created a very entertaining bit. Other hand propelled creatures proved to be good co-stars throughout the show. The ghostly ancestors chorus showcased some of the best Gothic and Steampunk costumes for the stylishly inclined.

Morticia looked elegantly dark in a skintight, "Cut to Venezuela" fishtail gown that would make most men pull their hair out. Gomez Addams' dapper suits complemented his flamboyant persona perfectly. The show's use of a yellow dress simultaneously outlined one character's angst, another character's shortcomings and was the subject of one of Morticia's best lines.

Whether you were a fan of the Barry Sonnenfeld movies
, old tv show
, or an admirer of the original Charles Addams cartoons
, the show paid tribute nicely to all three. This one is a must-see folks...Get your tickets soon!

Photos from Broadway.com

Macabre Fashion: Alexander McQueen's Final Show Fall 2010 RTW

In a gilded salon in Paris this week, Alexander McQueen's final collection was shown. 
The four-time winner of British Designer of the Year had started his career as a tailor’s apprentice on Savile Row, worked for Romeo Gigli in Milan, and was made the head of Givenchy in 1996. His own theatrical collections shocked and awed the glamour world with his dramatic runway shows over the years. He lost is mentor and creative muse Isabella Blow three years ago, and had lost his mother a week before his tragic suicide.
This collection was a beautiful and sad presentation of ornate looks that showed his genius.  Elaborate embroideries, brocades and draped satins had a Byzantine influence.  Eerie motifs of angels and skulls touched many guests, many of whom were in tears.
The simple statement from the show notes said it best, “Each piece is unique, as was he.”

Monday, March 8, 2010

Macabre Fashion: Ann Demeulemeester Fall 2010

Belgium produces so many things that I love...Waffles, chocolate and avant-garde fashion. Ann Demeulemeester's runway presentation in Paris was a showcase of dramatic suits and dresses. Collars curled or looked wind-blown. Coils of black whip-like ropes wrapped around the neck and body. Flamboyant feathers looked like they were stained with blood. Blood red leathers also popped the black upon black outfits. Diva? Dominatrix? Whatever works for you.

Friday, March 5, 2010

Wonder-ous Costumes in 3D - Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland

Opening today is Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland. The dark prince of Hollywood unleashes another gorgeous film on the screen in eye-popping 3D. One of his most important partners in achieving his style is Colleen Atwood, costume designer extraordinaire. She is the talent behind the looks of Sweeney Todd, Sleepy Hollow, Batman Returns and many of my other favorite films . For Alice in Wonderland, she wanted to stay far away from the cliche "Alice-in-a-bag" costumes you see at Halloween (many based on Disney's original animated version). Instead, her team took inspiration from authentic illustrations by John Tenniel and Lewis Carroll from original 1865 editions of the books.

As reality wasn't a priority, Ms. Atwood designed Anne Hathaway's look as frothy, Victorian "Stepford Fairy Princess". For Helena Bonham Carter's red queen, the designer outfitted her in a stiff, exaggerated Elizabethan collar to create a frame for the oversized head. The actress then was fitted with a prosthetic forehead and a 3 lb heart-shaped wig.  Digital effects did the rest.

For Johnny Depp’s Mad Hatter, Colleen Atwood created his look as a blend of Edwardian hat maker (the ones who actually did go mad from mercury poisoning) and a watercolor illustration created by Depp and Burton himself.

Go see the movie, or check out many of Ms. Atwood’s costumes and sketches in person at the Tim Burton retrospective at the MOMA.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Gareth Pugh Fall 2010 - Techno Goth Fashion

If you are a regular reader, you must be used to my love for this bad boy designer. Dark, edgy, unapologetic. His recent collection had severe, sculpted cuts, part alien/part cyber armor. There were a few looks that had thin, dripping, web-like fringe. The male and female models were almost androgynous, with the slicked down hair and pale lips. The clothing was sexy and flattering...I couldn't wait to get to the soiree and wrap myself around them all!

Monday, March 1, 2010

Macabre Fashion: Emilio Pucci Fall 2010

I have a Pucci beach bag. I purchased it because it was in terry cloth and had a brightly cheerful, busy print.  It was exactly what I expected from Pucci, and I use it when I don't want to scare away the kiddies on the sand.  However, the Italian designer surprised me this week with their showing of very dark, dramatic looks.  The classic geometric wavy prints were reinterpreted in a tonal black rendition.  Fringe, fur, feathers and velvet took the place of the floating silks I had come expect.  Has this iconic design house joined and come to the dark side? You be the judge...


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