Sunday, January 23, 2011

Trends: Summer Nail Colour

As winter wanes, be daring and add some heat to your nails this summer. Freshly-lacquered nails, in red shades from berry to deep crimson or gold to green, can instantly add the right amount of pop to your ensemble. Keep them maintained and chip-free to achieve utmost sophistication.


Brights are a must-have for this season. Bold, fresh colour and smooth coverage make OPI's new Texas Lone Star Collection the ideal choice.

OPI Texas Lone Star Collection in Guy Meets Galveston, $19.95

My Personal Favourite:
OPI Texas Lone Star Collection in Do You Think I'm Tex-Y, $19.95


Think opaque shades of Tiffany & Co. blue, mint green and the dainty and delicate peach and pink. For a look that showcases femininity, pastels are perfect.

ORLY Manicure Miniatures in Lollipop, $7.95

Bloom Nail Polish in Kitty, $19.95


Rich and traditional nail colour will do wonders to add contrast to dull hues. Try sharp shades of red, maroon and dark purple for a truly timeless and sexy addition to your look.

Chanel Le Vernis in Dragon, $39

OPI La Collection de France in Bastille My Heart, $19.95


Toned down natural shades of cream, blush, mushroom and nude are cropping up everywhere in the fashion world from shoes and underwear to dresses and nail varnish. This is a great choice for those who prefer sheer, low-maintenance nail colour as it’s far easier to keep up with its less-visible chips and crack.

OPI Beyond Chic in Makes Men Blush, $19.95

Manicare French Pink, $13.50


Add a new dimension to your look with foil nails which famously featured in Alexander McQueen’s SS 11 show thanks to UK nail artist Marian Newman. By simply pressing the strips onto the nail and filing to fit, these metallic pieces will create texture that will last up to two weeks.

Blixz Liquid Gold, $17.50

The McQueen mani from

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Designer Spotlight: Counterfeit Country – Is Tom Ford right?

Following the unveiling of Tom Ford’s SS 11 show, commentary behind his concept of secrecy begins. His ultra-private runway, in attempt to avoid his work being copied and overexposed via the internet, provokes the question about how detrimental counterfeits and knock-offs are to the industry.

Tom Ford SS11 Collection

Many like myself are pro-authentic, AKA "all or nothing", but consider what effect “fakes” have on our society as a whole. Rip-offs may, in fact, help to promote an egalitarian society and diminish the presence of the poverty line where the rich are very rich and the poor are very poor. After being told of a poor Vietnamese man sitting by the side of the road with the biggest and most extravagant D&G belt, perhaps counterfeits help give everyone access to and become involved in the fashion industry, regardless of what level.

On the contrary, what effect does the old Vietnamese man have on the industry? Stefano Gabbana probably doesn’t want this image associated with his label. The fact is, high-end designers want their wares to be worn by the upper class to reaffirm the division of society. Without these classes, what would make designer fashion any more special than something picked up from St Vincent de Paul?

The issue of piracy in the film industry has plagued the fashion world likewise. It isn’t fair and takes away from the quality and concepts that designers, particularly those from Australia, bring to the table both nationally and internationally.

Sass & Bide's Black Rat pants are an example of an Australian designer piece which was copied and mass produced. Sarah-Jane Clarke and Heidi Middleton, the masterminds behind the label, worked their way from a stall in London's famous Portobello markets to worldwide recognition. The tireless work and draining effort that consumes designers is constantly being short-changed.

Sass & Bide Black Rats

So, is Tom Ford right in making a statement against the immediacy and exhausting of designer pieces by the media and the internet? Or is the digital age and the subsequent designer copies leading to the greater good?

Designer Spotlight: Tom Ford's Secret SS11 Show Finally Revealed

If you don’t know who Tom Ford is, you should. If you’re a male, take heed – a Tom Ford suit is sophistication at its best.

His six-year return to womenswear this season has been tightly under wraps until now. Hiring only one photographer to shoot, Ford wanted to keep his work away from the immediacy of the internet and the world of knock-offs. He questions the industry and cyber world’s thirst for new knowledge now and the rise of internet shopping. Ford told WWD that designer pieces are being overexposed and by the time their work reaches boutiques, the look has been done and worn out as consumers and the media turn to look for what’s “newer”. So after much anticipation for access to his secret SS 11 show, the curtains have finally been lifted.

This American designer, with a reputation for his openly sexualised campaigns, brought his signature old Hollywood glamour into the limelight this season. Since boosting sales during his time as Creative Director at Gucci and Yves Saint Laurent, his own label TOM FORD is soaring in success. For some time now, Ford has been creating all that is sharp and chic with a masculine sexiness saturated in rich opulence for men and women. His tailored fits, defined cuts and enhancements of the figure make his work both sumptuous and seductive.

Tom Ford with part of his SS11 collection

Tom Ford has the ability to port you into a different era, one that is far more grand, elegant and luxurious. Everything from his latest collection to his latest lipstick line communicates Tom Ford’s brand a la luxurious brilliance.

Monday, January 3, 2011

How To: Wedding Guest Etiquette

Embedded in society’s rule books and generated from a clash of conservative and modern day ideas, the etiquette of a wedding guest developed. Avoid learning through trial-and-error by using these top tips.


• RSVP promptly. If you haven’t RSVP’d, it is inappropriate for you to attend the ceremony without speaking to the hosts. Receptions are often paid for by head and not returning your RSVP card can make matters difficult for the bride and groom.
• If you RSVP to say that you are attending and have to cancel, contact the bride or groom immediately to let them know.
• Wherever the ceremony is being held, it is imperative to be respectful and silent where appropriate.
• Always arrive 15 minutes to half an hour before the ceremony to avoid being late.
• Taking photos during the wedding ceremony is often advised against unless it is a relaxed gathering where you have been given the go-ahead to do so. The bride and groom will use a professional photographer to capture the ceremony and it’s like they won’t require your rookie snaps.


• Rule number one for females is: do not wear white. It is said that it takes the spotlight off the bride, however unintended. The same rule applies to creams, ivory and any type of off-white. This has been around since the dawn on man and should be adhered to. Floral print dresses are often fail-safe.
• The invitation, location of the wedding and reception are easy indicators of the style of the wedding whether it be a relaxed beach ceremony or an evening black tie event.
• Avoid high heels for outdoor weddings to avoid heel sinking. Flat sandals are often fine for this type of occasion.
• For a semi-formal to formal occasion, men don’t have to wear a full suit or tux. Instead, you can opt for a dress shirt, pants and shoes. A tie and jacket is optional.
• Avoid looking like you're going clubbing or heading to Rosehill Racecourse, keep your dress length and cleavage classy. For men, jeans and shorts are a no-go unless it’s a casual gathering.
• Wearing Black used to be advised against but for a black tie or cocktail event, it is suitable.
• A personal note, I’m no fan of the maxi in general and at a wedding it can look like you’re the odd bridesmaid. It comes hand-in-hand with not trying to take away the spotlight from the bride, groom and the bridal party.
• For a black or white tie event, a tux and a formal gown or dress is appropriate dressing. This may be the only instance where you can disregard most of the above and wear a floor length gown with some extravagence.

Anthony & Standford's wedding - The perfect example of guest in black tie attire


• Weddings are extremely expensive so it is not acceptable to ask to bring a friend or your brother, particularly when your invite does not say ‘plus one’. It is often fine for you to ask privately if a long-time partner can attend but apart from that, it is generally quite rude to impose on the hosts in this way. That said, if a guest was invited to the engagement party or received a ‘Save the Date’ and wasn’t invited to the ceremony, it would be fine to have a quiet word with the bride or groom about it.


• Gifts are not compulsory. Keep in mind that you have a year after the wedding to give a congratulatory present. It is also customary to give a gift even if you are not attending.
• Bringing your gift to the reception is often advised against, instead have it delivered to the address attached to the gift registry.

For Brides to be, I suggest Amour Amour for truly beautiful inspiration.