pencil it in

On May 18, 2015 by theseventhsphinx

I cannot get enough of midi length skirts and dresses right now, especially in a pencil silhouette. There is a retro ambiance to this length, hemmed somewhere around the calf, that is conservative while still feeling chic.

asos midi jersey pencil skirt

I find this length revealing in all the best ways, much more universally flattering than something that reveals the knee, and drawing attention to the calves and ankles in a way I find particularly feminine. I think this holds for a full or a fitted skirt, it’s all about that length.IMG_9281

The slinky jersey accentuates the pencil silhouette here, creating that fertile tapered curve from the width of the hips to the narrow point of the knees. Clothes that reveal more or less everything but do so with plenty of fabric nearly always come across as sophisticated to me. I positioned the skirt fairly high up on the waist as well, and do I only imagine that I seem taller?

The curvier you are, the better this silhouette looks.

IMG_9291

And white. Of course.

One can imagine this look with a black skirt but…white is definitely the bold, conspicuous way to go. Somehow white skirts are exponentially more appealing to me than white pants. Why is that? I’ll have to think more on that.

I can imagine it with a teal skirt or something along those lines as well, or a bright shoe, but I wanted to keep it duochromatic.

IMG_9330

Remember this necklace?

I like a natural look like this, a peachy/bronzy look with no eyeliner. This is the Charlotte Tilbury Beach Stick in Formentera as bronzer/highlighter, NARS Gilda blush, a beautiful matte burnt coral, and Charlotte Tilbury lipstick in Penelope Pink with a little Korres lip glaze over top to pink it up (Penelope Pink is not that pink, despite the name, it’s a really nice nude). The Beach Sticks are lovely, by the way, remind me of the Kjaer Weis cheek creams, and a bit like a NARS multiple upon initial application but with more of a cream-to-powder formula as you blend. Very easy to blend with fingers.

IMG_9368

Try putting a touch of your blush (or bronzer) just above your crease with a loose blending brush to tie everything together. It doesn’t really matter what other colors you may or may not have going on on the lid (I have gold here, incidentally, loving my Lorac PRO palette), it works with anything.

IMG_9369

asos white midi jersey pencil skirt

J Crew silk blouse, asos jersey midi pencil skirt, Zara suede d’orsay pumps, thrifted jewelry.

J Crew polka dot silk blouse

x

 

distraction: the silhouette

On April 13, 2014 by theseventhsphinx

2aab71ba59a35e805dbec0ca015dfc8a

Now that’s more like it.

This is a cozy step beyond the sweater dress...

image via pinterest

belt it

On December 12, 2013 by theseventhsphinx

IMG_0113

I like a herringbone pattern, especially in charcoal.  I got another faux fur collar as I wanted some contrast here (and generally find it difficult to resist white things).

IMG_0132

IMG_0147

IMG_0153

IMG_0160

oxblood suede (♥!)

Yes, my coat has perfectly functional buttons, and I do like that boxy boyfriend look achieved by simply buttoning it as well as the casual look of not buttoning it at all, but why not add a belt? You know? Just why not?

I’ve been randomly adding a belt here and there where no belt is needed, and it opens whole new world of possibility. Many of my favorite uses of the belt are entirely cosmetic. I am coming around to investing in a really excellent belt (in any style, but with something a bit special about it), which belt can then carry the day, regardless of what it is in fact belting. I’ve observed that a nice dress with a supbar (cheap, plain, ragged, uninspired, etc.) belt yields a supbar effect, while a subpar dress with a luxe belt yields a luxe effect. I think the conclusion here is obvious.

Did I already talk about this? This feels familiar…but perhaps it was only in my mind. Perhaps I am building on the initial idea to invest in a belt and going on to say that I would then wear that belt in all manner of unconventional contexts. Belting a coat that has no need of a belt (or which already has a belt!), belting a scarf, belting a sweater or anything bulky, having a belt slung at the hips independent of any assigned loops, wearing multiple belts.  Much like the artful placement of a superfluous zipper (or like jewelry, which realm of decor a pointless belt approaches), a purely aesthetic belt can immediately up the style factor, especially one that is well chosen. Indeed, the more out of place it is, the better it will function as a feature of interest. It can also up the femininity factor, the waist being a definitive part of the female silhouette, and the highlighting or exaggeration of the waist a much-considered matter in the fashion and beauty industries (not to mention all of the feminist and body issues bound up in it and the zones above and below it by association, i.e. ratios). The waist is powerful, and so is the belt.

IMG_0089

Alorna herringbone coat (thrifted), faux fur collar (eBay), bon chon gloves, Old Navy sweater, Express leggings (I was skeptical about these at first but I think if I wear them and stare at them a bit more I’m going to like them), Cole Haan pumps, Michael Kors belt (thrifted). On the lips: MAC RiRiWoo. Oh, and here are the textured gold sphere earrings I was waiting for. They are heavy but they will do.

IMG_0141

 RiRiWoo (♥!) Like I said, the color is stunning, ultra saturated and ultra matte. 

IMG_0075x

 

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:

15c7773147c9058fe7ff6d9f634fdb0a

29d3dd3b52ad3e4f5e272bfad5ef4fb7

41f0c6aecfc2fb0b1df4af40f309926e

947affecbee02b3bf19184a9c09e6968

8060d524ea3a91e84867b05547a0e735

caa4eaaa87d0c96bd7d89fa9a1dfda39

dce3a548b4b863946e655d2a3f814ee7

dd0fecac1d54064cd8f6996ebd9f16fb

debedea6d9632715313f47da1dde71cb

6979462ab9441375b792a4c6e8046989

aaa8131ceed44cc351899e5f40111154

ef1fb4882962c95f804d0ddb590781b0

ffdcb49e2ed465355532276537502bdf

d37fdfa8089dfbc05b02c2e496f2a00c

c56fac6373b10f835f8be8a71219f84f

Inspiring, no?

images via pinterest

weekend distraction: ikebana

On March 9, 2013 by theseventhsphinx

[slideshow_deploy id=’1047′]

 

Ikebana, the Japanese art of flower arrangement, is a great metaphor for personal style, I think. You take natural ingredients and mold them into the desired configuration with the help of scaffolding, highlighting and obscuring different elements as you go, seeking balance and harmony. The end result is a unique, purposeful silhouette, natural yet unnatural, tailored to the flowers themselves as well as the environment.

Also I find them a compelling use of space, when I like them.