Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Lani Hammett - What Does A Metallica Wife Wear In The 00s?

Kirk Hammett's low-profile wife Lani gave birth to a son on June 28th this year (the bafflingly named Vincenzo Kainalu Hammett). Lani was not one to strut around Nicole Richie-style in hip maternity outfits, so to answer my own question (what ARE the rocker wives wearing?) I've rounded up some pre-baby shots.

Black, leather, corduroy, no-fuss hair and cheap-looking shoes. Is that a purse she's holding or an envelope? 'Dear Lani, kudos to you for the rock spirit.' Metallica may have sold out but you sure didn't.

The only thing that's 'now' about this is the slightly emaciated look, but you know it's drugs-debauchery-and-partying induced, not the result of fussy, painstaking lifestyle choices (gym, dieting, macrobiotic foods).

A little more stylishly rock. Check out those tatts! Kirk was having a hotel mogul moment, with that Hawaiian shirt and velvet (is that velvet?) suit. His curls are tight-tight-tight, like individually stacked springs. Hers are loose and lazy. Like all great loves, they balance one another.

A playful moment captured in the tropics. You've got a red dress and a pretty hairpiece, and your husband is having a Chris Cornell moment. Can I be you?

Then again, the head segment in the lower right (from the original article) could be some woman he was supposed to be cheating with. Trouble in paradise...

Lani enters the present millennium, with sleek-looking hair, a new fringe, modern makeup and a bit of effort in the clothes department.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Pregnancy Fashion Starring Nicole Richie and Gwen Stefani

Maternity fashion. Oy vey... what a nightmare. Not every woman will literally double in size during pregnancy - you see the odd one who looks essentially the same (right up until the end!) except for a neat, basketball-shaped abdomen. 'You can only really tell she's pregnant from the side' people will say jealously.

Even for those women, maternity dressing is a hassle. If you don't balloon all over, it's like suddenly having an extra limb (aforementioned basketball abdomen). This extra limb must be accommodated, and the available dresses are notoriously frumpy, box-like and cheap-looking. And why, oh why (I will never understand this) does virtually every maternity outfit come in a selection of loud, psychedelic prints (and no block colours)? It's like wearing a tent-sized Hawaiian shirt.

Gwen Stefani set the bar for maternity fashion while pregnant with her first son, looking defiantly cute and polished right up until the end (even in those prints!)

More recently, Nicole Richie has earned the approval of fashion commentators with her (gasp) sexy, clinging pregnancy outfits. Who'da thunk it?!

Images: maxim.com, imnotobsessed.com, justjared.com

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Christina Aguilera's Shocking Fashion Moments

Still on Christina Aguilera; in (dis)honour of her latest tragic VMAs moment, I'm taking a look at her fashion misadventures from past years.

Ah, the VMAs. Music awards shows typically present a wild, colourful fashion turnout: a choice showcase of dubious tastes (as opposed to television or movie award shows, where everyone scrambles to look blandly stylish, in hopes of being branded a 'modern day Audrey Hepburn'. The Emmies? A sea of floor-length earth-toned dresses. The Oscars? Beiger by the year).
Christina is an upholder of the grand music tradition. Let's check out some of her looks.
1999 and 2000: Christina debuts as everyone's second-favourite trashy nineties pop nymph. That butterfly midriff top on the left is so 'mall' (as they say) it hurts. The outfit on the right could well be a ball gown slashed to bits.
And the underlights (as opposed to highlights)! Remember those? Chunks from the under-sections of the hair would be foiled and coloured, producing that inimitable nineties trashbag look (Jessica Simpson was also a fan). Christina chose bright maroon to complement her bleach blonde. Ooh la la...
2002: It doesn't get much better (worse) than this. Christina turns up in a wraparound top (flashing some serious underboob), with an industrial strength spray tan and the most laboriously slutty red eyeshadow known to man. The dark underlights on her white blonde hair (bleached to absolute breaking point) produce a weird 'grey' effect (black + white = grey).
I have nothing more to say. Would you believe that this is worse up close? I've spared you the full size image.
2003: Christina cleans up a little and steps out in a very unusual (and quite notorious, at the time) feathered Roberto Cavalli dress. Her body looked sexy here.
2006: At the height of her fashion golden age: the fifties looks! Christina turns up with perfectly set curls, immaculate makeup and a plunge dress, just to keep things from getting g-rated.

2008: Channelling Morticia Adams (yes, that's got to be it) at the 2008 VMAs. What goes up, must come down...
images: mtv.com, christinazone.com

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Christian Dior Pays Tribute To An Icon

The Christian Dior Fall/Winter 2008 show has been an extravaganza; bloggers have noted the inordinate number of A-list actresses that have flocked to the Paris show. This is truly the brand of the jet-setting elite; the secret weapon of wannabe fashion icons.

Second only in importance to the clothes themselves is the makeup. Were you wondering about the inspiration for this year's beautifully severe looks? That epic eyebrow arch and painted cat's eye may look like the stuff of fantasies, but Dior didn't just pluck them out of the air. They're inspired by Lisa Fonssagrives, iconic Swedish-born model and wife of legendary photographer Irving Penn.

It's not a reference everyone will get, but it's a testament to Dior's unfailingly chic extravagance and the broad sweep of this designer's style 'vocabulary'. Long live CD.
images: WWD.com, artnet.com

Monday, June 30, 2008

Celebrity Style At The 2008 CFDA Awards

There were a LOT of fascinating choices this year, so to save time and space I'm going to limit myself to three gongs: the Weird, the Wonderful and the Whack.

My Whack award goes to Kim Cattrall, mainly because I can't figure out why she pulled her hair into this severe top knot:

Grr, don't you just want to pull it out?

My Wonderful award (and I hate myself for giving it to someone with so little edge) goes to Meredith Melling Burke, who looked really pretty in her Oscar De La Renta dress. Who could resist?

And the Weird? I'm still trying to digest Maggie Gyllenhaal's outfit.

The thing is, I've seen this look millions of times, but only ever on fifty-five-year-old female gallery curators. All she needs is funny red-rimmed spectacles, a limp wrist, middle-age spread (isn't THAT what those blouses are designed to cover?) and a posse of artistic friends who air-kiss and call each other 'dahhhling'.

Check out style.com for more pics.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Fashion Forward Celebrities Take Chances (For Once) At the Costume Institute Gala

They call it the 'Oscars of the east', but in many ways the Costume Institute Gala is like an anti-Oscars.

It's a night of experimentation. Attendees who have never taken a fashion risk in their lives are encouraged - just on this occasion- to go more Helena Bonham Carter than Jennifer Aniston. No beige tube dresses or ball gowns allowed! Here are some of 2008s hits and misses...

Is it a sleeve? Is it a cape? A flimsy jacket? Amber Valetta starts us off with a nod to the ongoing voluminous trend. The jutting cape works IMO because the body of the dress fits her like a *glove* (she looks like an Oscar statuette) and because the colour is plain.

Eugenia Silva wore something I could see on Sarah Jessica Parker - but I actually like it on Eugenia Silva. Brunettes can do quirky because their sober, classy look balances it. Go brunettes! (I just dyed my hair chocolatey and my brunette pride is at an all-time high).

Designer Diane Von Furstenberg wore one of her own dresses. And a fab pair of blue shoes. With a red sole! Where was all this flair when I reviewed her borax spring designs a couple of months ago?

Cute and quirky Maggie Gyllenhaal was made for the Costume Institute Gala. She would have looked that way anyway :)

A more demure Beyonce Knowles. She looks gorgeous! Like a candy-covered chocolate (instead of a chocolate-covered candy).

Please tell me that's not racist! I will not have my girlish encouragement censored by you PC thugs ;)

The mother of them all, Vogue editor Anna Wintour, in a white dress with unusual sea shell accents. It reminds me a little of Oscar winner Marion Cotillard's mermaid dress. On the other hand, it reminds me a little of something from Star Wars.

You know what? I like it either way! Who can argue with Anna Wintour's fashion choices?

Donna Karan in a sagging, puke-coloured dress of her own design... she should have saved this for the SAG awards. Is that a stain between the folds at the front?

Eva Mendes looked the way she usually does, only with a few snips and folds at the hem. Is this really innovation?

Fergie looked frumpy.

My personal favourite. Kate Bosworth looks like a model pre-catwalk, not an actress.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Marilyn Manson Has a New Girlfriend

That's Manson's girlfriend on the left. Isn't she the spitting image of his ex, Dita Von Teese (right)?

Wait a second, that's not a new girlfriend. It's his cradle-snatched beau of many months, 20-year-old Evan Rachel Wood from Thirteen. Would you have recognised her in a million years? What's with channelling your boyfriend's ex?

Not since Lisa Marie Presley hooked up with Michael Jackson in the 90s has a female been spotted taking such obvious style cues from her lover (though Presley wasn't imitating any ex wives, she just started to look like Jackson himself).

But then Michael supposedly copied HIS style from Diana Ross, whom he was said to be deeply in love with. So Jackson was an intermediary, influencing Lisa Marie Presley to adopt Ross's style in much the same way that Dita Von Teese's look has migrated to Evan Rachel Wood through the romantic conduit of Marilyn Manson. It's all a rich tapestry.

In a bizarre gender reversal, Brad Pitt is often spotted playing style floozy, trying on his girlfriends' looks the way a flippant shopper tries on pantsuits.

It's that much more disturbing with Evan Rachel Wood because she's so young and impressionable, and because the transformation was so full-on (remember her as a mousy-haired tomboy?)

images: Wired, Getty

Saturday, April 12, 2008

Christian Lacroix Hits New York! This Calls For A Retrospective...

French designer Christian Lacroix opened his first New York store yesterday on swish East 57th street (home of Chanel, Dior, Yves Saint Laurent and Louis Vuitton). This big name will fit right in - but why has it taken him so long?

Asked why he waited twenty years to set up shop in America's fashion capital (could it be a snub? How French!) the mild-mannered designer simply said:

'...I prefer to do everything with good timing, with a good location.'

Fair enough. To celebrate this milestone in Franco-American relations, let's check out what Lacroix has been up to for the last eight years.

2000 Wacky patterns, cropped jackets and parade of ever-changing trouser cuts. Lacroix's designs at the turn of the century betray a definite party sensibility.

2001 Toning it down (just a little), blackening it up and playing with coloured tights long before any of us were even dreaming of it.

2002 Voluminous shapes and loud patterns (and pigtails) sound a final death knell for the sober, streamlined nineties.

2003 A brief love affair with skin took us all by surprise.

2004 Flirting with the fifties and sixties, and abandoning that reliable old red ready-to-wear setting for good.

2005 Russian-tinged glamour took everybody's breath away.

2006 Patterns galore! And the girliest vibe to date

2007 A more mature outlook, darker colours and a an outer-space aesthetic.

2008 Coats bulked up and colour was almost nowhere to be seen at the spring ready-to-wear show.

images: Style.com