Coach Celia sunglasses

On March 27, 2015 by theseventhsphinx

It’s strange, the style of sunglasses I was scouring the internet for three years ago—thick but not too-thick white frames, aviators or pleasantly sculpted, lenses not too small, not too big, no nose pieces (hair-friendly)— to virtually no avail (save the Vuarnets) suddenly, when searched anew on a summer prep whim, are readily available.

Clearly I am ahead of my time.

Here is the winning silhouette from the latest search, Coach Celia sunglasses. [There’s a runner-up that may be joining the party later on, incidentally (or maybe it’s no coincidence?) also from Coach (Irma).] This gently arched shape, a softer version of a classic 50s style, has become known as the Audrey silhouette, I think thanks to Celine’s Audrey and Baby Audrey frames from a few seasons ago (and thanks to Audrey herself). It’s an easy shape, simple and I suspect flattering on many faces.

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They don’t seem so rare, do they? But I tell you, I couldn’t find a pair of sunglasses like this a few years ago for anything. Giant bug glasses, blinged out aviators, yes, but something simple like this, and something simple like this for ~$100: crickets.

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So pleased.

Zara scarf and coat, MAC Velvet Teddy lipstick (favorite nude of the moment), Dior-dupe double ball earrings (eBay).

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Oh, and I’ve been wearing eyeshadow! Sometimes! Was completely inspired by this genius guest tutorial with Matthew van Leeuwen on celebrity makeup artist Monika Blunder’s channel (be sure to watch both parts). So many good tips here, like focusing the crease shadow slightly above the actual crease, right on the orbital bone, such that the shadow isn’t simply lost in the crease (as it is on my hooded eye). Instantly converted to this approach after the first try.

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details: conservative fringe at Ermanno Scervino

On April 12, 2014 by theseventhsphinx

I didn’t think I had any interest in fringe (with a few playful costumey exceptions) but this skirt has me seriously reconsidering. It has completely won me over.

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image via pinterest

This is from Ermanno Scervino’s Spring Summer 2012 RTW collection, which is well worth a browse. Lovely silhouettes and a soft, romantic (creamy lace, muted pastels) color palette. Gorgeous wrap belts echoed in the wrapped ankle straps of the sandals. I like.

A few highlights:

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images via fashionising

 

sun kissed

On February 24, 2014 by theseventhsphinx

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I am a long-time fan of Michael Kors as a designer, his sleek mono and duochrome ready to wear collections are (often, at least) clean and sophisticated; sporty, basic separates glammed up with chic tailoring,  luxe fabrics, and an elegant neutral color palette. I was curious to see his new makeup line and, though I find it a bit concept-heavy with the whole ‘sporty sexy glam’ thing (each piece in the collection is categorized for one of these three aspects of a woman who is all of these things, and this is the woman Michael Kors’ designs for), the line is what I would expect – sleek, chic, just a little bit gaudy.

His clothing designs are recognizable, his makeup and accessories are even more so – he is resoundingly known for gold statement jewelry and generously bronzed skin. Between the bronzed skin and the active, sportswear-style designs he is for me a quintessentially American designer. Wherever possible the pieces in the makeup line feature this square of gold made to look like a historic building plaque (a bit of cheeky ego there), and, as with his collections, gold is the recurring theme (remember how we love gold packaging?). As sun kissed, golden skin is his trademark I was particularly interested to try his bronzer, which does not disappoint. I found a deal on the darkest shade, Beam, a dark, shimmery copper that serves as a bronzer and highlight in one.

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This has a subtle shimmer, not something to cause concern unless you are absolutely against it. Many like matte bronzers because they look natural (provided one has chosen a suitable color) and can double as a contour powder and, while I have matte bronzers of my own, I reach more often for this. Looking actually natural (as opposed to looking made up to look natural) is a certain kind of look I only sometimes want.

I’ve been using it with this large Real Techniques powder brush, which is not the best of that range (not the softest) but which is large, densely bristled, and inexpensive (any fat, broad brush will do). It works a treat for bashing on large areas of color, and I find that the powder is finely milled enough and the color close enough to my skin tone that I don’t have to worry about being at all precise. This I like. So I dab in, maybe tap off the excess, maybe not (maybe having powdered beforehand, maybe not, which just changes the intensity a little), bash it on such that the curve of the brush tip lines up roughly with the curve of my cheekbone, swish any product left around my temples and maybe the bridge of my nose, and done. It’s not too obvious but I suddenly look healthier, with a bit of a glow going on. Sun kissed. Which is such a beautiful, apt phrase. Looking as if I have been given numerous kisses from my benevolent lover, the sun.

I like that this has a pink-red rather than an orange undertone, which gives a more realistic sun embraced effect (I turn pink when sunburned, which is the logical extreme of sun kissed, not orange). The other colors are pleasing as well. The compact is large, making it unsuitable for travel but great for using a really big brush (undoubtedly the most satisfying way). If you are in the market for a bronzer, this is a lovely one.

weekend distraction: Carolina Herrera

On November 9, 2013 by theseventhsphinx

Periodically there is a certain look or silhouette I have seen, perhaps only briefly, that stays with me for weeks or months, or longer. Haunting me, tugging at some as yet incoherent desire, shaping outfits to come.  To determine their appeal is a retroactive exercise.

There are two such looks at the moment (well, a great many more than two, but two dominate), and I wonder if it can be a coincidence that they are both from Carolina Herrera?

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This first is from Herrera’s Fall 2013 RTW collection, and a number of the pieces feature this fantastic belt in some form or another. Black and white of course we love, but also the severe structure of the neck and shoulders, the close tailoring from neck to waist, contrasting with the fluidity of the skirt. This was, somehow, the piece that convinced me that it is worthwhile to invest in a truly excellent belt. A belt that can, solely by its own virtues, cocoon the bearer in a halo of sophistication. [Must find an opportunity to show you the one I found.]

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This look is reminiscent of Herrera’s own uniform; she is invariably chic and nearly always in a white blouse and black skirt, which she changes occasionally for a black blouse and white skirt (this is a slight exaggeration, I think there is a gray skirt, and sometimes she is in all black…but the exaggeration is only slight, I promise you). I have mentioned before and will surely mention again my devotion to the white buttoned shirt, and I think I’ve covered my current preoccupation with long, full skirts, too. Here they are together! Living in harmony! In two of my favorite colors!

While quite different, the looks share clean lines, simplicity of design, an element of severity, and that maximal contrast.

Herrera is a Venezuelan designer whose brand was built on her own reputation for impeccable style. Her designs are often described as ‘classy’ in a vintage sense of the word that is increasingly rare in usage; the one giving the sense of elegance and grace without any irony or mobster w/ cigar imitation voice.  The designs are feminine in the sense of accentuating the waist and incorporating the soft lines of light, fluid fabrics, but they are often (certainly I think in these examples, it varies) stately, too. This is a reserved (and thereby fortified) elegance, which makes it all the more striking, poignant, to my eye.

images via pinterest

into: Haider Ackermann

On November 5, 2013 by theseventhsphinx

Haider Ackermann is a Colombian designer with a strong and distinctive style, much inspired by Yves Saint Laurent. I have been consistently drawn to his pieces for years now (see the style.com photo archives for the full collections). I think it must be obvious why: stunning juxtapositions of color and texture, bold draping, seductive fabrics, strong shoulders and necklines, asymmetrical silhouettes.

Here are some favorites from the last few years, in no particular order:

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Inspiring, no?

images via pinterest

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