Saturday, April 30, 2011

Champagne Please

Sarah Burton of Alexander McQueen designed Kate's wedding dress and I have to say this is going to be one copied style. There is something incredibly romantic about iconic brides and wedding dresses from the past. This dress definitely drew inspirations from some pretty famous princesses. With vintage being on trend at the moment, these vintage inspired wedding dresses are an amazing way to steer away from traditionalism for your big day. Princess Katherine changed into a second gown for the reception. The dress appears to be silk or satin, with a jewelled belt and a full skirt. She’s also sporting a white cardigan. Like her wedding dress, the reception dress was designed by Sarah Burton.

When film star Grace Kelly married Prince Ranier II of Monaco in 1956, it was one of the most glamorous affairs ever. Young, beautiful and wearing couture. In fact she wore two dresses one for the civil ceremony just as Princess Katherine did and one for the more public religious ceremony. The most memorable was the lace bodice, high necked dress which she wore for the religious ceremony which you can see Sarah Burton drew inspiration from.

Also another British Royal with an iconic wedding dress, Princess Margaret wore a simple v neck style of dress with a neat long sleeved bodice and a simple flared skirt which was very flattering and even years on still looks amazing. The dress was designed by Norman Hartnell. Simple and unfussy.

The second dress

what was Beatrice thinking?

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

The Fashion Jury

A beauty pageant is a competition that usually focuses on the physical beauty and the personality of the contestants. Such contests often incorporate personality, talent, and answers to judges' questions as judged criteria but Townsville’s own Fashion Bash is not just a pretty face, it looks within the different layers of the fashion industry like catwalk, photography, design and creativity, exposing young talent in all areas regardless of “height” and “X Factor” which can be a driving force in the modelling industry.
dressed to impress for my judging duties. Photo by Rosanna Kersh
Pageants can carry a stigma so I was a little hesitant with lending my critical eye as a Petticoat Lane Judge.  The wonderful Colleen Zablocki mother of Rachael Finch former contestant of Miss Fashion Australia and winner of Miss Universe Australia contacted me, once I saw her passion and love for the event I just couldn’t say no and took on my role as Fashion Judge with sartorial gusto- considering that, these are young girls dreams we’re dealing with...I didn’t take my role lightly.
The judges Andrew Rankin, Colleen Zablocki and Emma Read. Starting off our interviews

I think when beauty pageants began; they were viewed as trivial events whose participation required no scholarly effort. Miss Fashion Australia the first pageant of its kind has made an effort to ensure that it does not appear as a "stereotypical" pageant. The competition emphasizes the different aspects of women within the fashion industry and seeks to reveal hidden abilities and grow their personal success. The Fashion Bash strives to give these women the opportunity to rise to the top with pageant participants returning to their hometown to promote community involvement which is key to encouraging self-esteem, a sense of belonging with the other contestants, and the larger pageant community. Winners of Miss Fashion Australia have said they gain the ability to speak in public, a sense of confidence in them-selves and they feel a sense of accomplishment so I was very excited to see this event for my self and gain better insight on the Fashion Bash.
First day interviewing! Fresh and eager to meet the girls one on one.
The winner receives immediate success with a fabulous trip to Hollywood, a rewarding career education program that offers the winners of the Model, Television Career and Fashion Design Challenges to attend professional training programs.
Over all winner Sherie Wilcox in the 13-17years section. Kate Glover photography

Gorgeous winners of Active Wear Emma Master, Chloe Hansen and Brooke Nash

Stunning winners of Day Wear Rachael Herraman, Esther Ball and Melanie McDowall

Winner Olga Dmytriyeva Glamour Wear 18-35years
Over 100 girls attended and I won't lie, it was extremely stressful and a very exhausting process for me and my fellow judges. I could only imagine how the entrants felt? Those hard working girls put in a lot of effort, innovation and creatively it was refreshing to see. The interviewing component had an interesting cross section though. Surprisingly, a small percentage of girls were confused on their role at the event and didnt have a clear idea what they wanted to do in the fashion industry? Then there were young ladies who were VERY driven and had a full understanding of the direction they wanted to take for their future. Below is an excellent example of what focus, determination and passion can lead too.

Rachael Finch Miss Universe Australia

Townsville girl Rachael Finch has been working as an international model since winning Townsville’s Fashion Bash. In 2009 she won the Miss Universe Australia title and went on to place 3rd Runner-up in the Miss Universe pageant in the Bahamas. Rachael has now grown into her role as model and TV personality appearing in Master Chef, Dancing With the Stars, Sunrise Weather host, Channel 7 series High Road Low Road with Tom Williams.
All in all I had fun and I met some great characters and made some fabulous friends! My fellow judges, the incredible Colleen Zablocki and the talented photographer and VERY FUNNY Andrew Rankin made my time at Fashion Bash a really memorable one. It felt like school camp with not one dull moment (well maybe the raffle calling, I asked Colleen to slap me at one point to keep me awake) there was excitement, drama, laughter, and even a little crying. It was a privilege to be involved.
Some beautiful fashions off the stage. Lovely ladies snapped out side

The stunning Rachel Dillon winner of the Glamour wear 13-17years

WIN TV interviewing Sherie Wilcox

Final night of judging.
Someone asked me “would I judge the event again?” well, that’s a hard question even though my brain still hurts and the stress of it still raw I could safely say I would be proud to put Petticoat Lanes name a long side Miss Fashion Australia.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Divine Anarchy

Dressed up grunge, mix of masculine rebel and feminine activist with a clean crisp white singlet, it has an edgy night–time twist with faded thrashed jeans, strappy studded heels and black belt. Kate Moss immediately comes to mind with that skewed kind of undone beauty except in this case the hair is coolie styled. Just think back to those Johnny Depp days, Kate in a white T-shirt, no bra and a leather jacket, or that David Sims black and white head shot that made her into an instant icon. Kate is a social chameleon doesn’t give a crap about social status- this we love, love, love!  The look is hot and I love the image it creates, the tattoo, the simplicity and the attitude!

Side note: Moss has been a supporter of many charities, Breakthrough Breast Cancer charity featuring in target T-shirt campaigns, Samand Ruby charity for education and shelter of Thai children and also supports Elton John AIDS Foundation called the Hoping Foundation and Make Poverty History charity. We love you Kate...just be your-self!

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Columbian Craft

I was at the Heritage on Flinders street and spotted this outrageous piece of fashion. More like art than a belt this daring rodeo inspired accessory is by bull rider Luis Estuardo Chavarria Guerra from Guatemala (I can spell it not say it). While visiting Australia he would create these belts using old bull riding ropes either selling or passing on as gifts. Eco friendly cowboy craftsmanship....that’s pretty innovative.  
Townsville has such a strong outback history which is close to my heart. Times have changed since then, I remember going out on the town and jeans were the dressiest fashion observed. Heels were only added to class it up and a dress was only worn for a gala event. This look is still utilized now, don’t get me wrong I LIVE in my $10 no names from Vinnies but boy, haven’t we come a long way! 
You can see the Central American influences here. Guatemala has produced many indigenous artists who follow centuries-old Pre-Columbian traditions. Well known for combining traditional “primitivism” or “naive” art movements with European and North American traditions.  I think it matches the life style of Far North Queensland perfectly. The colours and textures, I love the safety pin thrown in for that cheeky Swiss Army feel. Even the luscious pop of colour on the nails really makes this outfit rock.
When choosing the right belt make sure it’s a defining moment because your waist deserves the attention!

Saturday, April 9, 2011

I'll pop the kettle on

I love getting visitors from out of town and this week a very dear friend of mine  Kristianna popped in store, former Townsvillian  she converted  to the bright lights of Sydney and is one very talented hairdresser- just quietly. It wasn’t just the 7years worth of gossip to catch up on but Kristianna’s amazing retro vintage she’s thoughtfully collected over the last decade which made the voyage with her. Preening through people’s prized collections is an honour for me, the history, story behind the items, the gift it gives new owners and the fresh journey it takes .... sometimes sad, sometimes hilarious it’s all part of the vintage find.  Remember the love you had for a particular item? Well, a piece of that feeling is past onto the next person and so on. It amazes me what great condition these possessions come in. I personally wear things to DEATH and in the end no amount of mending can save its poor little hemmed soul ...up to retail heaven it goes!
Kristanna was wearing a great 70’s harem style jumpsuit and bought one of Petticoat Lane’s crocheted black cardies, this matched her whole look seamlessly. The crochet cardigan is making a big comeback with each one holding its own elaborate texture, pattern and unique style- perfect for festival mode.  What I love about her outfit, the antique turtle shell necklace she bought from a vintage flea market in LA. Instead of picking through the mountains for collectibles her self she’s asked the owner to point out his favourite treasure.  “This one!” he proclaimed “it’s the most interesting and it’s made from turtle shell; my guess, it’s from one of the isolated pacific islands”.  I love that someone just past on a little bit of history, that story can be exchanged to family and friends. I’m a firm believer you always need to ask questions about vintage, it could be a saturated version of it’s life but hell, don’t let the facts get in the way of a good story I reckon ha ha
This is one of Kristiannas beautiful vintage pieces. One of a kind 1970's Muu Muu dress

So nice to see old friends and talk endlessly about our appreciation of all things vintage. Petticoat Lane is beginning to feel a little like a message post, where women meet, deliver fashion gems and tell their story. This I enjoy most...

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Pale Hues

Eclectic hardware like these embellished blooms, showcases the simple outfit with maximum drama.  Muted autumn shades of encrusted gems add a romantic edge to the sheer chiffon dress and contrast the soft fluid layering.  Balance frills and ruffed hemlines with heavy pearled or diamante necklaces, earrings or rings, this brings an outfit to life! The style ties nicely together with the grey bag and high waisted belt- perfect.
I really love the brave clash of textures, the soft wintery dress and the warm polished beads and crystals add an extra-special element to uncomplicated style. Townsville women are really having fun with accessories it’s great to see inventiveness and thought.
This whole look is elegant (having amazing hair like this doesn’t hurt either)
Outfit is by Witchery the grey envelope clutch by Oroton.