this is a photo of clothes on racks

Trends at International Fashion Week

Here are some of the main designs I caught on the runways at International Fashion Week. From Paris to Milan and New York – what trends will you be wearing this season? Here’s your guide to the latest looks!

Patchwork

This quirky look was seen all over the runways of Phillip Lim. What his work seemed to show was a pastiche of patchwork that seemed to be various pieces of fabrics and tones all combined together. This gave an ‘odds and ends’ look that was unmistakable. His collection looked quirky but sleek, bringing a bit of the bohemian to the boardroom.

Straw hats

This look was seen at the Rachel Zoe collection and was from the Jane Birkin-inspired headgear of yesteryear. Zoe combined the straw hats with flicked fringes, blonde locks and beachy and bold styling. She always seems to nail that ‘casual yet styled’ look so well, giving her fresh-faced models simple gold accessories and tumbling locks.

Pink and blue tinted hair

A trend that does not seem to be going anywhere fast, pink and blue tinted locks were seen on the runway of Anna Sui. Some great shots emerged showing not just real tinted locks, but plenty of wigs and hairpieces too, including on models Lindsey Wixson and Karlie Kloss, the new host of MTV’s House of Style. The look is slightly-girly, slightly goth.

Bondage look

Many bloggers were talking about the “Fifty Shades of Grey Effect’”. This bondage look was seen in the collections of BCBG Max Azria. Basically, the designer showed an S&M-influenced-collection, some said was inspired by famed fashion photographer Helmut Newton’s iconic black-and-white photography. Think leather and bold colours, teamed with cheeky black.

The corset

Another style we’ve seen plenty of, the corset was seen in the collection of Hervé Léger. The designer put forth a corset-style nude-tone leather harness that created a look that many people were saying walked the line between feminine and a dominatrix-like look. Corsets make a comeback every few seasons, and although they are generally uncomfortable, they are flattering to many body shapes and look sexy and feminine.

Feminine

Speaking of a feminine look, Calvin Klein Soundwaves collection seemed to appear effortlessly chic and frilly. He made great use of geometric prints, but rather than focusing on the bold takes of seasons-past, he used a tighter, smaller print to give the frocks a really trippy and concentric effect. Francisco Costa for Calvin Klein was a great collaboration. Ralph Lauren also made use (as the designer often does) of flirty, frilly frocks.

Cutouts

A trend that has shifted from autumn to summer, this uses exposed patches of skin at the chest, waist, and everywhere else! The cutout is having its moment again this spring. Seen on every star from Beyonce to Katy Perry, the cutout was also seen all over the runways at International Fashion Week. Beware, this trend is not going anywhere fast!

Stripes

It seems like walking the line is the big thing to do for this season and all the catwalk stars are getting on board with stripes in many different variations! From bold and big to tight and small, stripes can give a fresh, nautical feel to the looks you love. Thick or skinny, horizontal or vertical, it’s a trend to continue to watch.

What styles and trends are your favourites? Tell me here by leaving a comment below!

Advertisements
trends at fashion week

The top trends from Fashion Week

Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week 2013 proved to be an exciting and trend-inspiring event. Here are some of the main looks caught on the runways in September.

  1. Flirty, feminine shapes: These were seen on the runways of Zimmerman, with stylish, Grecian-inspired gowns and strappy flat sandals. Ginger and Smart took the trend to a new level with swathes of gorgeous fabrics in a range of colours and textures.
  2. Diaphanous silk and organza: This is a trend that was nailed by Camilla with her range of kaftans in a bold colour palette, studded with gems, sequins and semi-precious stones.
  3. Hero swimwear: This dynamic trend was seen in the collections of Zimmerman, including a long-sleeved leotard-style one-piece with deep mesh slashes. Taking the influence from European fashion, high-waisted bikini bottoms were everywhere and many designers used the colour champagne pink.
  4. Shimmery metallics: These are still proving to be a favourite with the fashion crowd. Sass and Bide’s new collection was seen by an impressive front row including Iggy Azalea, Zoe Kravitz and Poppy Delevingne. Metallic shorts were done by Alex Perry and bold blue metallic was seen on the runway for Watson x Watson.
  5. Peachy colours: This sweet and juicy palette was done by Camilla and Mark and Bless’ed Are The Meek. The models that walked for them were eye-catching in this girly shade.
  6. Eye-catching prints: Camilla Franks has proven to be bold and brassy in her choices again this year with snatches of animal prints jammed together with floral and geometric.
  7. Cut-out shapes: Cutaway panels and bold white were a feature of designer Han. Lines above the waist were keeping the trend as a possibility for the masses. Jackets, skirts and dresses also used cutaway panels to great effect.
  8. Handkerchief hems: These playful hemlines were found on the runways of Watson x Watson and a handkerchief-hem skirt was seen at the show of struggling brand Lisa Ho.
  9. Navy colours: Sass and bide used lots of ivory and navy with girly and cute accents of antique gold and rust red. The nautical trend has a spring/summer feel to it.
  10. The Crop Top: The crop top was one of the biggest trends to hit the spring/summer runways, with numerous designers incorporating the midriff into their collections. Pictured: A model walks the runway in a Ginger & Smart crop top. Also Bless’ed Are The Meek.

What styles and trends are your favourites? Tell me by leaving a comment below!

this is a photo of my hand near the grass

Why I love getting naked

I have always enjoyed taking off my clothes. This is a post about nudism, not exhibitionism, although I can say that I am an enthusiast of both at times. It’s fine – this post has an M-rating and I am not trying to frighten you with my nudity. You can read this post safely.

Australians are prudes. I know, I know. This may surprise you. If you are an international reader of mine, then you may think that all Australians are free, casual, nature-lovers who are healthy, good looking and secure in their bodies.

Not so. We are prudes. Aussie men are chauvinists. Aussie women don’t even think they have a right to paid maternity leave. We are quite backwards in many ways.

Including nudity. Yes, it’s not for everyone. I am not sure why I like to get my gear off so much. I really like to be naked and I guess it makes me feel free.

Ashamed of my naked body as a child

The first time I remember being ashamed about my naked body was as a little girl aged 9. I went to an all girls school and had just been transferred there from another co-ed school, which was also in another country. When I got back to Australia, I found that some of the things I said and did were not acceptable. People thought I was a bit weird, but really, I was just used to a different system.

An embarrassing mistake in kindergarten

Like in kindergarten (when I was about 5) the teachers told us it was time to use the toilets. I marched right up to the boys’ urinal and started to take down my pants. I was just following what all the other kids were doing, and I was obviously talking to a group of boys not girls in line for the loos. I had never seen a urinal before but my child’s mind simply thought, “Well, this must be how toilets in schools are.” A teacher quickly showed me to a stall and said – “You don’t go there! That’s for the boys!” I was confused. I still am, I guess.

So, back to the all girls’ school, aged 9.

It was time for swimming class. We were all showed into the change rooms and told to put on our cozzies (that’s what we call swimming costumes in Australia – don’t you love that?) and instructed to be quick about it. As a 9 year old girl, I simply started to unbutton my school uniform (almost every kid in Australia wears a uniform, whether they are at a public or private school) and take it off.

The next thing I knew – one of the other little girls was howling at me!

“Alyce Vayle likes to get naked! Woo woo! Look at her!”

I looked around and noticed that all the other little girls were shielding their little naked bodies with their uniforms as they changed, carefully sliding them down so that they didn’t show any skin. Why on earth these girls were behaving in this way was baffling to me. We were children! We didn’t even have bras or boobs!

My class let me know in no uncertain terms (today this would be called bullying) that my behaviour was wrong, unusual and not the socially acceptable thing. This was news to me at the time. I was very, very embarrassed. From that moment on, I made sure that I changed the same way – covering myself up at all times like I was in Victorian England.

Growing up I felt no shame

Luckily for me, I was brought up in a liberal household and we were never made to feel ashamed about our bodies. As a child, I was taught the correct names for my private parts and saw my body as a simple, functional thing.

Where to get your nude on

These days I don’t often get to be nude, outside the four walls of my apartment. The Boyf is also often reminding me to put on clothes and not stand in front of the windows when naked. It’s nearly summer here in Sydney and I would like to go to a nude beach. Being nude at the beach is illegal in Australia (pfft! I told you we were prudes!) but a blind eye is often turned at these ‘nude’ beaches in Sydney.

So – what’s wrong with that? There is nothing wrong with being nude. It does not make me weird, or a pervert, or overtly sexual.

“Nudity is an essential part of all primitive agricultural rites … By unveiling the body, and especially the sexual organs, women more effectually represented the goddess of fertility, and more effectually as her representatives, or through their own powers, magically conveyed fertility to the fields. “

John Arnott Maculloch :The Religion of the Ancient Celts

Well said, John. Plus your name sounds like a biscuit, so I will listen to you.

this is a skinny woman

5 Celebrities with Eating Disorders

Tracey Gold

Do you remember Tracey Gold? She is probably best known for playing Carol Seaver on the 1980s sitcom Growing Pains which ran from 1985 until 1992. Tracey was a famous child star, like her sister Missy. I remember one episode of the show that Carol Seaver fell through the roof of her bedroom, the inference being that she was heavy. Tracey spent many years during the show and after it battling an eating disorder. In 2003, Gold wrote the book Room to Grow: An Appetite for Life with Julie McCarron.

Tracey was pictured on cover of one of People’s bestselling issues ever. Later she said: “There are many trained experts in the field of anorexia and eating disorders; and there are a lot of girls who struggle with it. (My book) is for every sister, daughter, or friend whose life has been touched by anorexia nervosa. My celebrity has provided me a forum from which I can help others.”

Amy Winehouse

I love Amy Winehouse’s music and I felt heart wrenched when she passed away. I think she epitomised what a real rock star should be: messed up and bohemian. She’s no Taylor Swift, she’s proper rock n’ roll. Her weight loss was well documented. She started her career a bit podgier than she ended up. There were accounts of her drinking nothing but wine and eating nothing but Haribo sweets for days on end.

There was a story of her using a toothbrush to throw up and now Alex Winehouse, her 33 year old brother has come out to the press saying that it was bulimia that killed her, not drugs. He said the eating disorder “left her weaker, and more susceptible”. He added: “She would have died eventually, the way she was going, but what really killed her was the bulimia.” Read the article here.

Daniel Johns

This guy is the Australian lead singer of the band Silverchair, who had some success overseas. He was previously married to Natalie Imbruglia and he was one of the first men I know of to speak publicly about his struggles with food. He said, “It [food] was just the enemy. I just hated the look of it, the smell of it. If anyone talked about it, I’d leave the room.”

“Kinda when I stopped eating was on our second album, just as it felt like everything was so out of control. The reason I think [I did it] was just to gain control. I have a theory because I was being beaten up a lot by people outside of school, it was almost like if I could make myself sick enough they’d take sympathy on me.” (source)

Portia De Rossi

I have previously written at length about Unbearable Lightness, Portia’s great book. To summarize, yes, she did have an eating disorder. She over-exercised, threw up and starved herself at different times. There is one chapter where she describes eating tuna out of a favourite bowl with a pair of chopsticks to slow her down,. There is a part where her brother gets mad at her for feeding her turkey burger to her dog.

Get the book. She is very honest about what she is going through, but I do not want you to read this is you have suffered form an eating disorder yourself. The book is very triggering, especially when she describes (at length) her binge and purge sessions. At their worst, eating disorders can be just as bad, if not worse, than drug addiction. Portia is now vegan, and she seems happier.

Richard Lewis

This guy is an American comedian – you may remember that he played a Rabbi in 7th Heaven and Charlie Sheen’s accountant in Two and a Half Men. I first read his book The Other Great Depression when I randomly bought it at a bookstore. The book is about his recovery from alcoholism – and I DO NOT recommend it. It’s an awful, unfunny read and I think I tossed it before finishing it.

Interestingly, he talks about an eating disorder in it, which are very common among people who abuse other substances. He “chew-spits”. This is an eating disorder that many people don’t even know about. Someone who chew-spits, does just what the name descries – they eat a ‘forbidden’ food and they spit the remainder out, so that they absorb fewer calories. It is a real eating disorder. Read more about chew-spitting here.

this is a photo fo a beautiful lady

Hookers Who Regress With Child-like Fashion Choices

I live in the red light district of Sydney, Australia. It is known as Kings Cross, but even many Sydneysiders don’t know that Kings Cross is not a suburb – it is merely the name of the train station and a nickname for the district. I love where I live because it is very bohemian, and always was. The area is made up of yuppies, hookers, junkies, suburban mums and dads and it backs on to one of the best known gay districts in the world, Oxford St, Darlinghurst where the Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras is held every year.

Lots of us love The Cross

Another thing I just found out is that Kings Cross is the most densely populated in Australia, with almost 20,000 people living within a 1.4 km² (0.55 mi²) area. That’s amazing. Previously I have lived in the area of Australia that is the least densely populated in the world. In the Northern Territory, every square kilometre holds just 0.2 people. Never been to the Never Never? Get your arse there, mate. It is truly one of the most beautiful and spiritual places on earth. Get a room with aircon.

Botswana is busier than Australia

Overall, Australia’s population density is 2.9 people per square kilometre, making it one of the least densely populated countries in the world – only Mongolia, Western Sahara, Suriname, Mauritania and Botswana have fewer people per square kilometre than Australia.

Sew

Hookers in my street. Well, they’re not actually in MY street, I live in a nice street away from the main drag but The Boyf still laments having to walk over suspicious looking trickles on the footpaths on Sunday morning. I am less bothered by this but admittedly inner-city-dense living is not everyone’s cup of tea.

But I digress.

I have noticed that some of the working girls (and no, they’re not in marketing or admin) seem to go out of their way to infantilize their clothing, wearing pigtails, lots of sugary pink, glitter, feathers and knee socks. These are ladies who are often on the wrong side of 40, so I find their clothing choices quite odd.

I wonder if they are regressing into some sort of lost childhood? I may be over analysing things here but I do see a tendency for some of the hookers in my area to cling to their girlish pasts. Perhaps this is a way of getting more customers? Perhaps the ingénue, Lolita, or schoolgirl look garners more clients?

I am not sure, but I’ll wager no. Honestly I think a paying john would prefer a nice pair of heels to a couple of grotty pigtails tied up with baby pink marabou. I think this child-like dressing is representative of something within themselves that they are trying to express.

On a recent walk (not in my neighborhood), I walked past a slightly overweight, middle-aged woman (who was clearly not a hooker, just an office cubicle-worker, I guess). She looked like she did not look after herself at all, putting herself last. She was wearing a loose pair of cheap black slacks, the kind you might get from a faceless discount chain store, teamed with a top that was more like a sack than something she intended to look good. Thrown over this mess was a baggy black cardigan and unstyled hair and a face devoid of even the merest hint of makeup.

Yep, clearly I was not impressed.

However, this woman had taken the time to add a single accessory. What do you think it was? It was a long chain around her neck with a dangling charm. The charm was a big teddy bear.

It got me thinking. What makes a forty year old woman pick out a necklace with an infant’s toy on it? What is her message to the world?

“I love teddy bears!” It seemed to say.

Was it saying on another level

“I want to feel nurtured!” or “I want to regress to my childhood!”

Sex, Porn and My American Apparel Backpack

And I am doing it too. You will be relieved to hear that I am not regressing to my childhood. I always felt frustrated as a child, I always felt like an adult. I would get annoyed that my opinions were not valued (of course they weren’t – I was a little kid!) and I yearned for the freedom and power of earning my own money and making my own decisions.

Lately I have been dressing a bit more like a teenager, I guess. Often I have to pull myself up and remind myself that I am too old for zombie jewellery and arbitrary legwarmers. However, I can still get away with a backpack. I have been wearing one wherever I go. It is important to dress appropriately and dress your age, or you could end up a bit Miley Cyrus. The poor thing. I really like Miley but cavorting with giant cuddly toys (at the MTV VMAs) is both regressive and weird.

She knows what she’s doing though. I love how the media has been reporting that people felt “violated” by her performance. That is the biggest danger of dressing incorrectly – you make others feel uncomfortable.

Remember, we get dressed to get along in the world, to show respect for others. It’s important to make some effort to look presentable and appropriate. Dressing well is not just about you. It’s about others. Make other people feel comfortable to be around you.

Unless you’re Miley Cyrus or  Kings Cross hooker.

Hey Loser! Why Aren’t You Wearing Vintage?

Styles of yesteryear: beading, brocade, gem clasps and pressed metal. These are accents that you simply don’t see these days, or if you do, they’re machine tooled, not hand-done as they were pre-1950. It’s becoming increasingly difficult to find genuine op shops, thrift stores or vintage shops. More often than not, these are turning into ‘designer vintage’ places where you might pay almost as much (or in some cases more) than you would if the item were new.

Where to find your vintage pieces

Having said that, occasionally you can still find great, genuine vintage finds. Scour obscure neighbourhoods looking for small vintage shops, cruise through eBay and raid your grandma’s attic – you never know what you might find! Working some vintage pieces into your formal look is one way to ensure that you’ll have a unique look that no one else will be rocking. But don’t go too far! There’s no need to wear head-to-toe vintage, in fact, a better look might be to work a few vintage accessories into your look.

Things to keep a vintage eye out for:

Fur stoles: While the wearing of new fur can be controversial, if you find a vintage fur (made pre 1950) there is no reason why it shouldn’t be enjoyed and given a new lease of life. Look for genuine furs that are in good condition with no rips or tears. Check for any musty smell and avoid pieces that have mould or moth holes.

Costume jewellery: large, chunky pieces with faux gems can often be picked up for very reasonable prices. Look for what they used to call ‘paste’ jewellery: heavy, very transparent flint glass that simulates the look of genuine gemstones. Pile a bunch of brooches onto the shoulder of your gown, wear a statement ring on each finger, or find a chandelier earring to wow the crowd on formal or prom night!

Vintage bags: Look for items that are in excellent condition. Styles to consider might be ornate pressed metal, genuine vintage Oroton bags from the 1970s, silk purses from the 1950s or even a funky leather 80s tote which you’ve wrapped some hot pink lace around to give it a fresh breath of life. Be inventive!

Scarves and stoles: Scarves used to be worn a lot more frequently and subsequently, vintage shops are often full of really good quality, often designer, scarves and stoles. Look for genuine fabrics such as silk, satin or even cotton and cheesecloth. Make sure the scarves are in good condition and seem fresh and high-quality. Team one with your formal dress and stay warm while looking gorgeous.  A printed scarf can add colour to a plain dress.

Vintage to your formal to prom? It’s such a great option and one that doesn’t need to cost you the earth!

<450>

Could you wear pants to prom?

You’re an edgy gal, one who’s not afraid of standing out from the crowd, right? If this is you, then  you might be the perfect candidate to wear pants to prom!

What do pants say about a woman? That depends on how she’s wearing them. Of course, you probably wear pants more often than a skirt or dress, but we’re not talking about sticking on a faded pair of old jeans! Think luxe fabrics like thick stain or sateen. Think a tuxedo stripe down your pant leg. Think high-waisted. Think wide-leg. Think skinny leather and killer heels – just don’t think boring!

Best way to wear pants to a formal event

Make sure that the fabric of your pants is formal and that the tailoring is neat, well-fitted and suits your style. Pants can often be harder to fit well than a dress or skirt, so make sure you spend a good length of time searching for the perfect pair. Pants are one item that you may find challenging to purchase online without trying on – unless you are intimately aware of your size and the brand’s sizing chart.

Which fabrics are luxe enough to qualify?

Look for tailored pants in the following fabrics to rock your formal look:

  • Brocade is a rich fabric, usually silk, woven with a raised pattern, typically with gold or silver thread.
  • Velvet is a closely woven fabric of silk, cotton, or nylon that has a thick short pile on one side.
  • Leather is a material made from the skin of animals by tanning or a similar process. It comes in many styles.
  • Satin is a smooth, glossy fabric, produced by a weave in which the threads of the warp are caught and looped by the weft.
  • Sateen is a cotton fabric woven like satin with a glossy surface.
  • Silk is a fine, strong, soft, lustrous fibre produced by silkworms in making cocoons and collected to make thread and fabric.

What kind of top should you wear?

The kind of top you wear will depend on the style of pants you are rocking on the night. Are your pants skinny-leg? Boyish? Are they trousers? If your pants are the feature of your outfit then you need to make sure that your top compliments them and doesn’t overpower your look.

Think well-fitting tops in a close-knit jersey. Experiment with a lace bodysuit, teamed with a cropped bolero jacket. Could you team your formal pants with an edgy, skull-covered Bonds singlet and rose corsage? The thing to think about is creating contrast without creating a clash. You want your top to accent your pants without being the leading feature.

this is a rack of clothes

16 Signs Your Clothes Are Wearing You

You know the type! A sexy, gorgeous girl leaves the house looking and feeling great – or at least she thinks she does! Everything about her outfit is appearing fresh and fine, her accessories are coordinated, her brands are on-trend, her look is unconventional and yet thought-out…but something is still wrong. But what?

Don’t be this girl: her look is wearing her!

We’ve all seen girls like these! Sometimes they are our classmates, sometimes they are our colleagues, sometimes they are our best friends and sometimes they are even us? Who are they?

The Fashion-Victims who let their clothes wear them…

…rather than the other way around! Yes, it’s true, if you are not careful, you might find that the look you have been so keen to get right is actually wrong. In fact, it looks as if the outfit itself is taking you over and not allowing the real you to shine. Here is Alyce’s Trend How-To. We’ll show you how to make a trend work for you, rather than wear you!

Alyce’s Trend How-To:

Make sure clothes are well-fitting: there’s nothing worse than too tight or too loose clothing. To look your best, make sure that items fit well and are made of natural fabrics where possible.

Make sure you mix high and low: to really be on-trend it’s vital to mix up your brands and not become over-loyal to a particular label or style. Mix high street and low street, and new with vintage.

Don’t forget to accessorize: your look will be underdone and not quite finished unless you take a few extra minutes to add effective accessories. Jewellery, bag, shoes, rings/earrings and other items all complete your look.

Good nails and hair make a difference: these things really are the icing on your fashion cake. If you can spend a bit of time making sure that your hair and nails are neat, healthy, glowing and looked-after, it will make you feel like a million dollars with ease!

Switch up your look every week, every season: you cannot be on-trend by staying the same! Experiment with your look and try new things. Be bold and be different, if you get it wrong, there’s always tomorrow. Don’t be afraid, fashion is supposed to be fun!

Don’t be afraid of being different: this is the most important point to being on-trend. To be truly on-trend, you need to be in front of the pack, picking up the trends before the rest of the crowd. Be innovative. Be experimental.

Alyce’s 10 Point Trend How-To Cheat Sheet

How to determine if a trend fits with your style aesthetic:

  1. Do all elements of your outfit fit you well?
  2. Do all elements of your outfit suit the formality of the occasion?
  3. Do all elements of the outfit suit the weather?
  4. Did you wear anything similar last week?
  5. Will your outfits clash/too closely match your friends’?
  6. Have you spent some time on your hair?
  7. Does your bag match your outfit?
  8. Are you comfortable?
  9. Have you included at least 2 classic pieces and at least 1 on-trend piece?
  10. Look in the mirror one last time – remove one accessory

Now you’re good to go! Have fun!

“What are you wearing this season? Leave a comment and let us know!”