A Cut Above the Rest

A fashion wonderland

In Hollywood and the Designers on May 13, 2010 at 12:52 am

By Emily Deacon

Tim Burton’s latest blockbuster Alice In Wonderland is due will be released on DVD next month. This extravagant film is influencing designers and shoppers alike as clothing lines take inspiration from the movie’s striking costumes.

Costume designer for the film Colleen Atwood, ensures no teacup or pocket watch is left unturned, building upon Burton’s dreamscape through Victorian style dresses, shabby sheik ensembles and the wondrous accessories.

French fashion house Louis Vuitton is one of many designers transforming clothes and accessories into wondrous creations. Vuitton’s Autumn(Fall)/Winter 2009/2010 collection consisted of overstated rabbit-ear headbands and caricatured clothing as seen in Burton’s film.

Louis Vuitton Autumn(Fall)/Winter Collection 2009/2010.

Designers closer to home have taken up the challenge of recreating the clothing seen in the film, including local clothing company Review.

As stated on their website, Review welcomes their customers to a “Winter Wonderland that lets you play the heroine in your own fashion fantasy.”

The latest line by Review sees all-things-Alice, with items of clothing named after characters in the film like  “Alice Lace Top” and the “Tweedle Dee Skirt.”

Review employee Sarah Foster says it’s the overall feel and style of Alice In Wonderland that appeals to customers.

“I think many women simply love how Colleen experimented with Victorian style fashion in the film and also the quirky details that were included, we have tried to mimic that in our Winter Wonderland collection,” said Sarah.

The advertising campaign for Review’s latest line includes models taking photos with rabbits, tea cups, playing cards and pocket watches.

“I think that Review was able to create a line that a lot of women and young girls can relate to as far as fantasy is concerned, there’s something nice about pretending you are in your very own Wonderland through the clothing you wear,” said Sarah.

Monash University fashion lecturer John Gregory says that the old Victorian style of clothing that features in the movie is always of interest to designers.

“I think whole romantic, late Victorian environment that that film is set in that Burton is playing on, is already well established as an area of interest for a lot of designers, especially people who are fascinated with fantasy and romance,” said John.

In addition to the romanticised theme designers like Review and Christopher Kane take advantage of, there is a shabby-sheik look Atwood created for the famous tea party scene in the film.

“That shabby sheik thing, that’s another thing Colleen Atwood was really on to, particularly in the scenes with the March Hare and the Mad Hatter [Johnny Depp] played upon the mad, decadent trashing of the tea party and its table,” John said.

John Gregory also believes it is the fantasy both Burton and Atwood create that influences designers.

“Fashion does engage with fantasy and an almost child-like pleasure in beautiful clothes which in one sense is unrealistic, but fashion allows you to be a kid in that respect and be a bit of a fantasist,” he said.

Atwood ensures the audience is taken on a journey via her costumes designing, where over-exaggeration is the key to unlocking an idiosyncratic world, designers mimic this through their own lines.

“The clothing was just that wonderfully over-done and eccentric in certain ways, which pushed the edges of what you’d expect to see in clothing,” said John.

As designers like Review and Louis Vuitton continue to play on the Alice In Wonderland theme, it seems quite clear that this is one rabbit hole fashion enthusiasts are happy to fall down.

Ishka employee Anika Steel speaks on Alice In Wonderland fashion inspiration.


Up-and-coming, not obscure

In Melbourne Fashion Mania on May 12, 2010 at 3:17 pm

By Emma D’Agostino

All images in this slideshow sourced from Stef Dadon.

Well over 1000 people are expected to attend the launch of the Up & Comers Fashion Markets this Saturday.

The forthcoming market is the first of eight scheduled for the second Saturday of every remaining month of this year.

Market dates timeline

Timeline for the 2010 Up & Comers Fashion Markets

“My dream is to have a queue,” market producer Elise Kausman said.

True to their name, the Up & Comers markets are dedicated exclusively to making the talents of up-and-coming Australian fashion designers more available to the Melbourne public.

Producers Stef Dadon and Elise Kausman say a fashion-focused market is a rarity in Melbourne, despite the city’s reputation for style.

“There are a lot of fashion markets in Sydney, but none here,” Ms Dadon said.

“Most markets in Melbourne are craft markets,” Ms Kausman said.

See the DJ schedule for the launch market here

The pair spent much of March seeking and selecting stallholders for the upcoming launch.

Each applicant was required to provide a link to either a blog or photos of their collections to the producers.

“If there were two designers with similar stuff, we’d have to say to one of them that we might have space for them at the next market.”

Ms Dadon and Ms Kausman said there was already a large amount of interest in the next market, set for 12 June, from potential stallholders.

“After Saturday, we’ll probably be booked out for the next market,” they said.

Pieces from 28 designers will be available at the market this month, including those of acclaimed up-and-coming designer Harvest Powell.

“Her designs are at the higher end [of the labels featured at the market this month],” said Ms Dadon.

Sample of talent appearing at Up & Comers Fashion Markets Launch
Harvest Powell LadyLikes Markets
Mina + Oli Depths of the Never Never Evie & Anna
Modernist Marika King Jewellery My Sister Pat
Lamstok Livia A.R. Jewellery Loré Loré
Borsha Riotville Pauline’s Vintage Delights

Ms Dadon and Ms Kausman describe the range of labels they have chosen as a “cross-section of fashion”.

They hope to reflect the eclectic fashion tastes of 15- 35 year-old Melbournians.

Pieces will vary in price. The producers cited price ranges as anything as low as 20 dollars to figures in their hundreds.

“Some items may be up to 600 dollars,” Ms Dadon said.

Ms Dadon and Ms Kausman stressed that designers had been selected based on the value and innovation of their products.

“Some of this stuff may not be cheap, but you’ll be paying for quality,” said Ms Dadon.

“There will be a good range.”

Men’s and women’s wear will be available at the various stalls, in addition to accessories and jewelry.

The producers will also be manning a stall of their own, selling vintage fashion items under the LadyLikes Markets brand.

The Up & Comers Fashion Markets is the first major series of events produced by the LadyLikes Markets label Ms Dadon and Ms Kausman established in January this year.

Previous to this, the brand dealt exclusively in vintage fashion.

It is this initial dabbling that the producers credit for their Up & Comers Fashion Markets concept.

Ms Dadon and Ms Kausman said they thought it might be easier to sell their vintage fashions in a marketplace for up-and-coming designers than it had proven to be selling their products independently.

Initially, they intended for this to be done online.

Though much of the popularity the market has gained thus far has originated from online promotions- the Up & Comers Fashion Markets Facebook page had a following bordering on 2000 people at the time of writing- the pair said they redeveloped the idea in favor of physically interacting with the community surrounding up-and-coming Australian fashion in Melbourne.

“One of the major challenges when we first started doing this was that we had to learn as we went”, Ms Dadon said.

“We didn’t know where to get vintage fashion from, at first. We do now.”

The pair was also unsure when it came to charging an entry fee.

“We were going to make it a gold coin donation,” Ms Kausman said.

“Just to cover our costs.”

However, entry to the Up & Comers Markets is currently free of charge.

Are Ms Dadon and Ms Kausman excited about the launch?

“Absolutely,” they beam.

They’ll definitely be going shopping.

Keep an eye out for Steph and Elise marching around the corner of LaTrobe and Swanston Streets in the city from 12:30 to 13:30 today (14/05) as they encourage Melbournians to liven up their wardrobes at the Up & Comers Market; they’ll be dressed in black, and bearing banners.

The Up & Comers Fashion Market will be held this Saturday (15/05) from 11am to 5pm at Ormond Hall, which adjoins with Melbourne’s Belgian Beer Café; enter via Moubray St.

Cash only purchases

Further links:

Jimmy’s on the run

In Hollywood and the Designers on May 12, 2010 at 1:38 pm

By Michelle Teresiak

Australia’s high fashion will never compare to Paris, London, Milan, New York and Japan, according to RMIT school of fashion.

Lecturer in Fashion at the school of Architecture and Design at RMIT University Ms Sue Thomas said, “Australia doesn’t have luxury labels and never will.”

“Studies have shown that Australians like to accessorise with high fashion labels, whereas the rest of the world like to make an outfit from their expensive fashion pieces,” she said.

Australia’s fashion is a year behind every other country in the world. Concerns are raised about how we can cut it with the rest.

With the Sex and the City 2 movie being released on 27 May, women are going crazy; cinemas are pre-selling tickets to prepare for the months to come.

Fans across the globe are waiting excitedly to see what the next part of the story has in store and, of course, what the fabulous four will be wearing. New York’s most fashionable friendship group unite for this stylish sequel. Critics say there’ll be more fashion and more glamour.

Ms Thomas said, Sex and the City is one of the top ten movies ever produced which has had a major impact on the fashion industry, with women frantically searching for these clothing pieces on a daily basis.

Sex and the City
producer Michael Patrick King has included a lot of high fashion wear in the television series and movies. These range from Jimmy Choo, Prada, Chanel, Valentino and Roberto Cavalli.

Jimmy Choo at the Chadstone shopping centre is a popular store. The store manager Ms Vanessa Orders said, “As Jimmy Choo are a major fashion statement in Sex and the City, this suggests that more than 60 Jimmy Choo outlets world wide will be making 60 per cent more profit.”

“These profits on average start two weeks before the movie is released and last up to three months after the movie has stopped playing in cinemas,”  she said.

Movies are not made accidently; each scene, each item of clothing and every camera angle is purposeful.

Deakin University psychologist Izabela Sikora said, “There are three models of ones psyche. The Ego, ID and Super Ego which all play a role in influencing one in buying certain garments.”

“The Ego shows the more realistic side, where the person may decide that the actor is wearing an item of clothing that is appealing and think that they too may also look good in the same attire,” she said.

They then go out and purchase the same product, the same brand and the same colour in hope of returning the same desired results.

The Sex and the City movie in this case is the avenue of bringing attention to the Ego.

Sex and the City cemented Jimmy Choo’s global frame,” said Ms Orders.

Ms Sikora said, “People often tend to think that movies are fashion forward, and in order for them to be advanced they should be purchasing such clothing items too.”

“A pair of Jimmy Choo shoes are priced on the higher end of the scale which range between 400 – 1200 dollars. Many individuals working in retail wouldn’t think that items this expensive would be selling but surprisingly they do,” said Ms. Orders.

“Not only do we sell shoes but we also have a huge up sell of handbags and other products. Look out for the new range of products in store from mid May,” she said.

Movies that made fashion

  • Breakfast at Tiffany’s
  • Annie Hall
  • The Talentes Mr. Ripley
  • The Royal Tenenbaums
  • The Notebook
  • Marie Antoinette
  • Sex and the City
  • 500 days of Summer
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