Wednesday, 30 April 2014

Transforming Paper into Fashion

There are always artists pushing the boundaries with creating out of everyday simple items.....such as paper. Working with such a delicate material and painstakingly molding it into a spectacular dress or any object for that matter, is just pure talent. Having the patience to intricately cut stunning designs from paper via hand or lazer and then glue, sew, knit or weave the pieces together bit by bit shows both discipline and passion.

Paper made clothes and accessories (mainly as costumes) were used as early as the 19th century. Apparantly during wars and crisis, alternative materials were required for clothing, and paper provided the easiest and cheapest method. The use of paper in fashion became a short lived novelty in the 60's when American Scott Paper Company produced a dress as part of a marketing stunt. Customers could send it $1.25 and receive a op-art design dress made of 'dura-weave'. It started a huge craze that had fashion houses following suit producing and selling paper clothes for women, men and children. Even bridal gowns were produced. It was the eye catching colours and pop art designs featured on these garments that had people loving this trend. However by the end of the 60's, the novelty soon wore off.....they were generally ill-fitting, uncomfortable to wear, couldn't wear them in the rain, flammable, and trashed after a few wears. Since then designers such as John Galliano, Issey Miyake, Alexander McQueen have used paper in their creative collections as expressions of art. 
I'm so enchanted with the whole paper fashion/art style, I felt compelled to write about it. So exquisite to look at, one of these dresses sitting on a mannequin in my lounge room would give me joy. 
There are a few talented paper artists out there...some stand out more than others. Here are my picks...

Jum Nakao, Brazilian born from Japanese parents. Inspired by Origami Art
I would have to say Jum Nakao is one of the most recognised talented paper artist today.
In his own words "All of my works, for example, the paper made fashion lines, have a playful relationship with the spectator. This lightness is necessary to get a distance from reality and a connection with the invisible, with people's imagination, to let them see it from a different perspective - a less realistic one."  
In one of his fashion shows (as you will see in photos below), after the models walked the catwalk, they were made to rip the paper dresses off.
Hours and hours of work making these elaborate gowns.......
In a matter of minutes all that work ripped off...... in the name of 'art'
A little more of his work.....
Hard to believe these dresses are made of paper...Click here to view more of his work. 

The Makerie Studio
The exceptionally talented duo behind Makerie Studio are Julie Wilkinson and Joyanne Horscroft. These two women who spread between New York, London, Milan create three-dimensional paper sculptures for window installations, events, editorials, galleries, private collection and much more. They don't stop at fashion, click here to view their other stunning designs such as birds, architectural sculptures and window displays.

Elin Johansson
This coat by Elin is made of cotton paper. It was cut into strips and glued together. Then hand knitted to shape. Wow, wow and wow.  

Tara Keens
Trinidadian Architect Tara created this divine sculptural dress for her masters thesis which she named "ecstatic spaces"(a befitting name). It was one of a series of carnival costumes made from folded paper and twisted rope. View more of her architectural paper work here you won't be disappointed.

And to think even shoes made of paper....
I hope you have enjoyed this post as much as I have in researching it. There are thousands of stunning paper sculpture images that I spent hours viewing and almost as many wonderful artists out there creating these pieces. Well done to you all.  

The question is.....Would you wear one?? 

With love 

Friday, 11 April 2014

Surrealist Photographer David LaChapelle

Once called the 'Fellini of photography', American David LaChapelle is a reknowned photographer and director who works in the fields of fashion, advertising, film and fine art photography. His style is a clever blend of pop and surrealism. The humour, bold colours, giant sets, glitz and glamour, freaks, soft pornography, crazy costumes, religious connotations, famous people......these are all trademarks of the photographer who likes to shock! 
Elton John

He is recognised for his surreal and sexualized style, working with a myriad of famous people, photographing them in quite often compromising poses and settings. His work has been described as surrealist, grotesque, shocking and ironic. Yet you can't argue the fact that his work is strong and individualistic sending strong political, religious and social messages whilst still maintaining humour!  Looking at any of his images long enough (especially in the later years), many complex stories emerge about human nature, materialism,consumption and environment. I have several of his books....he is not new on the scene ( he has been photographing for over 20 years) and many of you may know him. His film RIZE released in 2005, a documentary on the dance movements " clowning" and  "krumping" formed in the poorer areas of LA.........I just loved.  
Although he has published a series of interesting books and some are quite controversial, in this post, I'll stick to the lighter side with his depictions of famous people. Please go to his website here to know more about him and his works. And click here to view many images of his work. I am sure some may shock you and some make you laugh. Enjoy........

When he photographs celebrities, he like to exaggerate aspects of their personalities and their personal lives which you will see in all these images. 
Alicia Keyes
Michael Jackson
Alexander McQueen and Isabella Blow    
Lady Gaga
David Bowie
Tupac Shakur

To some extent, LaChapelle is considered an outsider in the art world and in the world of commercial photography alike. As a visionary, he tends to add subversive ideas and unusual aspects to the marketed product with the use of bright colours and props, making his work easily recognisable.

Some other Images from his books and Exhibitions.
Now, David LaChapelle's work is more likely to be seen in galleries and books rather than magazines. He has left a huge impact on the world of controversial photography. You either love him or hate him.....there is no middle ground.

.......and finally the man himself working on set.

To see more  of David LaChapelle's work, go this website Artsy


Tuesday, 1 April 2014

You are not a carbon copy....stand out and shine.

Corporate Fashion Styling by Gessica
Melbourne, Barcelona, Dubai, Milan, Sydney

From this……

To this…..
You’re not a carbon copy. Stand out. Let me show you how to shine.
Having a strong, authentic personal and professional brand is imperative for success and important for building influence and reach.
That means embodying your brand on every level including how you dress.

Achieving that has little to do with chance. Just like your career you need to consciously develop a polished, professional style that sends the right message about your worth.

As author and connected brand expert Trevor Young says, be “conscious of how you want others to perceive your brand… and ensure that perception is consistent across all touchpoints.”

With spring in the southern hemisphere this is a perfect time to jazz up your existing wardrobe and turn something like this classy and simple dress into an individual style statement.

Dressing well at work is a professional investment that lifts your company image, self worth and confidence.

Book me in for a
  •  One-hour express workshop – gather a group of colleagues during lunch and I will show you how to turn core, classic pieces into statements that ooze confidence and power. (A longer after work session of two hours is also available).
  • Two-hour personal styling session – I work with you one-on-one in your home to sort through the good, the bad and the ugly, show you new ways to pull together what you’ve got and transform it by choosing the right accessories, highlight colours and accents.  

Workshop Highlights
  • What's appropriate - and not- at work - the right lengths, sizes, prints and colours
  • Making the most of what you've got - versatile looks for every day at work
  • Confidence dressing for important meetings
  • Stylish looks that transform from work to social events
  • Dressing for your body shape and personality
  • Accessories, hair and make- up
If you want to see more great ways to jazz up your corporate wardrobe see my post here


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