Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Old Bag

I have been thinking a lot about bags lately - I have always wanted a Birkin but my husband is not quite seeing my point there. I try to convince him about the beautiful craftsmanship etc etc and see his eyes glaze over. Then since I started having an income from my necklace and dress businesses I have tried to figure out how many I'd have to sell to be able to get a Birkin. Well, it's a lot of course, and once you see how much hard work goes into earning that much cash, you start to wonder whether you shouldn't save your money instead.

Anyway all of this makes me think of handbag prices today and how out of control they have become. The above bag is from 1984 and in the advertisement there is heavy emphasis on the quality of the leather, the stitching, the details. And as you can see it is pretty perfectly made. A lot of bags now are desirable because they are not so perfect - the leather varies in color, the hardware is made to look old, and they are often unstructured. All of this should make a bag cheaper - if you can use imperfect skins of leather there is not as much waste, if the hardware doesn't need to stay true to color you can pick a cheaper metal, and if you don't need to structure the bags you don't have to cut as many pattern pieces and therefore save on labor. It's quite interesting to me how over the years we have started paying for the overall effect a bag has on our look, not for the small details and quality that may have been important in the past. Interesting as well is that after the financial crisis quite a few designers are making structured bags again and are emphasizing timeless quality.

Don't get me wrong - I am not reminiscing about the good old days... I would be perfectly happy with a new Balenciaga bag if someone would feel inclined to buy it for me as an anniversary present...

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Carven, part 2

A bit more Carven because it's been a very long time since I have been so excited about a young designer making over an old couture house. It's affordable, very nice quality and it doesn't follow any trends. It is entirely unique and gorgeous. See more pics at

Walk thru Central

I did a nice walk thru Central Hong Kong yesterday, stopping by all the usual faves. It was hot and humid and last year's extremely comfortable Chloe wedges gave me blisters. I guess it is that time of year when only flat sandals will work.

Isabeli Fontana looks like she is in prison but it's just the shadows of the bamboo scaffolding on Alexandra House.

Lane Crawford has these sweet embroidered Roberta Freymann clutches with cotton print linings.  And on the right not a pretty garden alley, but a indoor walkway in the IFC mall leading from the Agnes B store to the Agnes B restaurant.... It is so fake it feels like Vegas - but I love the unapologetic artifice of it all.

Help I am wearing purple sunnies

This is how well I see nowadays without glasses. The world is a lovely place!  It's blurry and everything looks pretty flawless. And then last week I saw these brown Ray Bans and having just lost my 15-year old aviators I thought I should go for something different and fresh. So I bought the brown Ray Bans.

So then why are the damn things PURPLE RAINBOW SURPRISE????????????????????? Eye check up imminent.

Melbourne Fashion Girl, part 2

So I'd better fess up now before I wear these... Ever since me and Melbourne Fashion Girl and about five girlfriends flew back from a trip to Vegas, and she was wearing fuchsia pink short western boots I have been obsessed with finding some that would be right for me. Isabel Marant makes some really nice suede ones but they sell out everywhere in seconds. Today as I came up the Hong Kong Harvey Nicks escalator I first saw a sign that said 30% off with an HSBC credit card and then I saw these canvas lovelies. So that deal had to be done. Below are the Isabel Marant Forbes boots worn nicely by Kate Bosworth. See more celebs wearing Forbes boots at:

Monday, April 25, 2011

Sequins for day

In the ridiculously adorable picture on the right (and it is a woman in her fifties that I am calling adorable) Ines de la Fressange is pulling off sequins for day like it's easy peasy lemon squeezy. No wonder her style guide is a great success. She could tell me to wear a Christmas sweater with Santa embroidery and I would do it. Read more at:

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Best Bikini

This was one of those comical US Vogue articles - I think last year, but not sure now - it's called steal of the month, and in this one the steal was the Tracy Feith bikini since it cost $160 for the top and $140 for the bottom, so at $300 that is obviously a steal?? Not for most people. But I tore it out cos it's the best bikini I have seen in a long time. And it doesn't hurt that Doutzen Kroes from Holland is wearing it so well. I did try to find it, but couldn't, and ended up with a JCrew version at a far more economical price. Still want this one though!!!!!!!!!!!

Saturday, April 23, 2011


If you had just started to lose confidence in my fashion voice after I admitted I looove blingy hip hop style, you should read this article in Interview Magazine, a conversation between Carlyne Cerf de Dudzeele and Azzedine Alaia - Carlyne is the master of over the top accessorized glamour and my fave fashion editor of all time: Then watch Carlyne and Anna Molinari do bling beyond in the spring 2011 show for Blumarine: Below Adriana Lima styled by Carlyne for Vogue Paris.


I am always envious of people who know their own style exactly and never stray from it. I know what suits me best, but yet I go thru phases where I want to be someone else entirely. I have a current obsession with early Dutchess style, smooth glossy hair, Jersey girl make-up, crazy nails and drug store jewelry. Midlife crisis anyone???

Dots and stripes

Love the dots and stripes in these Max & Co billboards at IFC. Shop opening across from Club Monaco.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Dolls love fashion too

Someone persuaded me to sew a few more AG
doll outfits. If I had loads of time I might do it more
often - it's quite therapeutic to sit down and make
doll handbags...  Kanani goes to the beach.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Hairy Hat

If I can get my hands on the boots on the left (Fall 2011) I will be the happiest girl in the world. I don't have any idea how I would wear them. But I got a few months to think about that. Maybe a JDCamicetta silk navy boatneck mini dress. Rest assured I will not be wearing a hairy hat.

See more at Once again this is all Prada.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Fabulous Fashion Diary

Barneys is making it very easy to get dressed in the morning. See their fabulous fashion diary at,default,pg.html.  And note the shirtdress on the "Running Late" page. We are pleased to see the gorgeous Amanda Brooks has already introduced one of her faves into the Barneys mix. No need to ever be running late if you have enough shirtdresses.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Prada today, part 2

So just as I am thinking of shorts and tanks and flip flops, the fall shows have wrapped up and what we thought was so relevant today has suddenly become old again. I cannot stop talking about Miuccia Prada lately, I apologize if it's boring! She just always keeps me interested.

Prada Fall 2011 collection at

Self Portrait with Shorts

     JCrew is doing super great bright shorts this season.
     They are an unlikely combination of neon pink but
     yet still look like they have been washed a million

Friday, April 15, 2011

Prada today

I don't think I would buy one of these nylon bags now - although I seriously wanted one in the days Linda Evangelista was carrying the black backpack with the gold Chanel-style chain. They still are very pretty and beautifully made - the hardware is heavy and a classic semi-matte gold. The textured leather trim is gorgeous. Miuccia still does high-low fashion better than anyone out there.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Nice bag by Reed Krakoff

Would be so nice with tan or black sandals, or tan and black sandals, white shirt and jeans. Inside is beautifully finished too.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Treasure Chest

I am always looking for nice fabric covered boxes to store my favorite magazines but they are so hard to find. This one was from a place called Pierre Deux, which I had never heard of until a uni friend started working there years ago. Now they don't seem to have any, just a whole lot of French country reproduction furniture. Must not have been such a popular item. They are still using the fabric for placemats but definitely don't need any of those -

Lace and White

French Vogue is focusing on white for summer - lots of beautiful lace and eyelet fabrics. The really pretty blouse on the right is by Maje for a reasonable price of 139 Euros.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Never been easier to get dressed

It's super gorgeous spring weather in HK and I am loving our shirtdresses. Just throw one on and get your bag and ready to go. Here's me and a few of our dresses...

Prada 27 years ago

Love the grey deconstructed clutch with the black zipper pull on the right. In those days (1984) Japanese designers Rei Kawakubo, Issey Miyake and Yohji Yamamoto were experimenting with deconstructionism in fashion and it seems from the grey bag that intellectual Miuccia was intrigued.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Dreaming on

The last post got me thinking about having dreams for what you still want to do or achieve, and this being a fashion blog, what you dream of affording one day. What if you are Paul Allen, and you sit there on you giant boat (probably not the technically correct description) and you want a watch - I guess you just get off the boat, walk into St Tropez and pick up some Audemars Piguet with 300 diamonds (don't ask me why that name popped into my head), if that strikes your fancy. Would he walk back to the boat excited about having that new watch? Or does it all become quite boring when you can buy anything on the planet without blinking?

I dream of a gold Rolex sometimes but in the meantime my JCrew Timex keeps me company. It still makes me happy. And on a slightly philosophical note I am quite grateful for that.

Closets and Wardrobes

How many of you dream of one day having a beautifully organized walk-in closet? I have been dreaming that dream for a while now along with the one where I live in a house devoid of Ikea furniture. But that's not happening anytime soon cos I was just there yesterday. I guess life without Ikea seems like a proper grown-up thing to do, so I'd better face reality, that won't happen soon either.

On another recent trip to Ikea, I bought some clothes racks, thinking it would help my little closet room (too small to call it a walk-in) neat and tidy. Well now the closets are getting emptier and the clothes rack has collapsed a good number of times from the heavy load. Every time that happens I curse Ikea. I could instead hang the clothes back in the closet - the Ikea people did warn me in their neat direct Swedish manner that the rack would only hold 25 kgs.

See! Not kidding about the dire state of my closet. What looks like brown wood is actually a nasty thin veneer that keeps coming off the front of the drawers and snags my jumpers.

And living in Hong Kong humidity it probably isn't a good idea to have wallpaper, because the walls inside the closets always seem wet.

Wallpaper inside of my closet is part of my dream... Check out some of the prettiest wardrobes in the world on

Lots of wallpaper.

Btw black and white jacket on the left (the rack) is from now defunct clothing line of Kate Moss for Topshop.

New kid on the block?

I saw this bag the other day and the pink lining and sew-in label reminded me of the early days of Kate Spade. It's always really nice to see a new handbag company succeed and try something different. This bag was made in Thailand and looks like it's nicely made. See more on Btw, not such a new kid on the block - apparently the company was started in 2003.

Red pants

I read this blog every day: Most of the time it just links to other blogs, but it is a very professional and considered fashion point of view.

I have been wearing red pants for a very long time, but I am going to sit this season out. Mine are pretty perfect, they are Exte, an Italian brand, flat fronted, and a mix of wool and nylon. They are cropped, but not skin tight. I usually wear them with an equally old Gap chambray shirt (worn a bit wrinkly) and some flats. And in more recent years with my mom's black Chanel 2.55 bag. It has always been fun to wear red pants when no one in the world was even considering it. I guess if what you wear says anything about you, then probably my red pants say I am not willing to be much of a wallflower when it comes to fashion.

Monday, April 4, 2011

American Girl

I used to make these American Girl doll outfits, but now do not have any more time to do so. This was my all time favorite style, a cashmere cardigan with vintage silk edging, a sleeveless summer dress in Italian broadcloth and a denim messenger bag with gold chain.

Standout Miu Miu Flats

Love the Art Deco-ish (or is it Art Nouveau?) flower design and love the secret inch of height in the heel.