Looking at the auction catalogue of Marilyn Monroe memorabilia going on sale at Julien's Auctions in Beverly Hills, we loved these photographs:
They were shot by George Barris in 1962, just before her death. The bombshell as beachbum idea is really endearing. It would make a good theme for a collection. The colours in these photographs are amazing as well.
Also in the catalogue is this costume for her 1957 film The Prince and the Showgirl. Funny how the colours are so similar to Barris's photographs. Special dedication to Zac Posen!
Giovanni Boldini (1842-1931) was an Italian portrait painter known as the 'Master of Swish' due to his flowing style of painting. His work has some impressionist influence, but he is most often compared to fellow portraitist John SInger Sargent. He became the most fashionable portrait painter of the late 19th century in Paris. His work can be seen at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, the Musée d'Orsay in Paris and the National Portrait Gallery in London but the majority of his paintings remain in private collections (due to the fact that they were mainly commissioned).
As a painter of society portraits, Boldini painted the chicest dresses of his time. His ability to render fabrics was breathtaking. The Colour, the shimmer and the movement are beautiful. His work influences fashion designers today, most notably John Galliano. His subjects are also inspiring, including fashion icons like the Marchesa Casati whom he painted on more than one occasion.
Portrait of the Marchesa Luisa Casati With A Greyhound
Rita Saardi was born in Lebanon, raised in Stockholm, and educated in Paris. Quickly after finishing design school in Paris in 2004, she presented her graduation collection during Rookies, a young designer fashion fair in Stockholm, and was immediately celebrated by the Swedish press. In 2006, she participated in the arabic version of Project Runway in Lebanon. She made it all the way to the final but was unable to profit from that success when war suddenly broke out in the country. After that experience, she decided to return to Paris and slowly rebuild her label. In 2008, she presented a new collection entitled Between Heaven and Earth in Stockholm and was again hailed by Sweden's press. This year, she has just completed All Wrapped in Black, her newest collection.
All Wrapped in Black focuses on a Black, Ink and Grey colour palette with touches of gold and silver... a palette quite different than her past leanings towards white and pastels. At the beginning of the creative process, Rita was feeling quite dark. She imagined her silhouettes engulfed in black, representing a 'malaise' but little by little she found the fabrics revolting against her - as if they were having their own party, springing out at shoulders, twisting around arms. So in the end, we get a rather positive, happy feeling.
Rita made a video commemorating the collection, visible on her website.
The Glamour and Glitter Questionnaire:
City/Cities?For the last 10 years I've been bouncing between Paris & Stockholm, I'm planing on moving back to Stockholm where I'm hoping to really start my label...and would like it very much if I could spend more time in Beirut.
Breakfast?A glass of water or tea in front of my computer checking mails... Sometimes I dance.
Lunch?Unfortunately I often skip lunch ( which ends up by me eating everything I can find the rest of the afternoon....) but if I could I would definitely have Lebanese food... not the ones we get in Parisian restaurants though....Burk. I love the big salads you can find in Sweden, they are so fine...
Coffee?In Stockholm I drink more coffee since Swedes are known for their "fika" ( a break for coffee/ Tea & swedish sweets at any time of the day ) plus they have really good Italian coffee places... In Paris I drink my own tea at home... or a quick espresso at any café trottoire I can find....
Drinks?I would like to have Champagne more often, otherwise lately I'm becoming a white wine / Rosé person....
Dancing? With my husband we never go out clubbing.... for many reasons.... but since I'm a dancing queen deep in my soul you can often hear my loud music and I would be dancing in our living room like crazy.... apologies to all my neighbors...
What do you do for fun?I love walking around in Paris and just stopping whenever I feel like it to take a picture or just sit in a park or by the Seine ... If my husband is with me I'm the happiest girl in town :)
Where do you find inspiration? Before I used to look for inspiration today it can be anything really, I guess l am inspired by life itself and I'm guided by my own feelings...... I don't carry around a notebook anymore... because I realized that I just love creating in the flou of the moment... often it's much more interesting then actually drawing something etc... the pieces turns out to be much more alive this way.... I still don't have any production and I create everything by myself so I'm quiet free.
Rita has a blog that to her resembles a girl's diary... sometimes carrying important information, sometimes just fun and naive.
Inspirational Images from Rita Saardi:
Images from Rita's past collections after the jump:
Norman Norell deserves much attention, not just for his predilection to glitter but for being one of the greatest American fashion designers. We here at G & G are a big fan of matching dress prints to coat lining prints but doing it with sequins is just a whole other level.
While the United States was going through the Pop Art Movement in the 50s and 60s, France was experiencing the Nouveaux Réalistes. The most important female artist of that moment was Niki de Saint Phalle.
Niki de Saint Phalle with Jasper Johns, 1961
She was born into a bourgeois french family, but raised in New York City. She eloped at the age of 18 and had 2 children with author Harry Mathews, and quickly moved to Paris. A few years into the marriage, finding herself in the same bourgeois lifestyle that she had tried to escape, she suffered a nervous breakdown. In her recovery, she discovered painting and decided to become an artist. By 1960 her marriage was over, and she began a relationship with artist Jean Tinguely- it would be a life-long collaboration, romantically and creatively.
Niki with Jean Tinguely (left), 1962
In 1961, she become famous for her tir paintings. Her process was to prepare a canvas with found objects and plaster. Under the plaster, she would create pockets of paint, sometimes in balloons or simply cans of spray-paint. Then as a recorded event, she would raise the painting and shoot at it with a .22 caliber rifle. Paint would spill out of the bullet holes, creating a spontaneous painting. She performed her art in Paris, Sweden, California and Milan, but after only a few years, she grew out of the medium, moving away from its violent tendencies.
Her personal style during this tir paintings period is extremely fascinating. The juxtaposition of her tomboy artist looks and feminine looks is fascinating. She took to wearing a specially designed jumpsuit when performing her shootings.
With a career spanning 5 decades, Niki is most famous for her Nanas: large scale sculptures of women, exploring their various roles in society.
sidenote: The Beautiful Life. Will it be a total guilty pleasure or a total snooze? Zac's cameo is a little energylacking but then he says something like "Take this necklace off and make it into a belt!" and it's fabulous. The song is hot, too (Flip My Switch by Jupiter Rising).
Apparently for the 600th issue of Archie Comics, there will be a flashforward 5 years into the future where Archie will propose to either Betty or Veronica. This better not be like 10 years ago where he was supposed to go steady with one of them but he wound up with redhead Cheryl...
To explain, Betty and Veronica are two lovely high school students that have been characters of the Archie Comics since it's creation in 1942. That's seven decades of fashion! We get a little of everything with Veronica being the spoiled, rich girl and Betty being the sweet, wholesome "girl next door". We distinctly remember a story where the girls see a dress in a fashion show on TV. Betty decides to sew something together herself, while Veronica has it flown in from Paris on a private jet.
We highly recommend you pick yourself up some Archie Comics. The newer ones have "reruns" so you get a good assortment of fashion from different eras.
The fashion pages are our favourite. Not sure if those are still found in newer issues.