The Lost Art of Elegance

 
 
 
 
A photo taken of Audrey Hepburn by Richard Avedon.
 
A photo taken of Audrey Hepburn and Richard Avedon in 1956.
 
 
Since I can remember I always wanted to look elegant.  Now, to a 10 year old little girl this term of elegance and looking timeless was not so common and fully understood, but to me it was.  I was mesmerised on a daily basis by all the classy older ladies that I saw.  Walking in such a way that people always stared, looking approachable, timeless and most important, elegant.  I always wanted to look like that.  As I was only a 10 year old little girl when I started to say that I wanted to look elegant, people thought it was just a phase I was going through but now its 10 years later and I’m still striving to be like the elegant ladies I so frequently saw.
 
When I hear the word elegance, the first 2 people I think of is Coco Chanel and Audrey Hepburn.  The photographer Richard Avedon captured some of Audrey Hepburn’s most famous moments on camera and today it can still be seen as elegance.  Then of course Coco Chanel was the starting point of the black dress and pearls, looking classy and leaving a legacy behind that is still being respected today.  The next thing that pops into my head is “The Little Black Dress”.  Since the 50’s this was a term that was commonly used among women of all ages, shapes and sizes.  The most astonishing fact is that women of today still refer to a timeless black dress as a “The Little Black Dress”.  Now that is the ultimate style item to me.  You can dress it up and dress it down and always look fabulous because simplicity is after all the key note of all true elegance.
I decided to put together 3 looks incorporating “The Little Black Dress” to show you how you can look timeless and effortlessly cheek all the time.  Then of course the best part of all is that black dresses is so versatile and can suit every fashion style out there by mixing up the accessories.
 
 
Strapless Maxi Dress @ Mr. Price - R89
Knotted Neckpiece @ Foschini - R129
Plated Thong Sandals @ Mr. Price - R119
Cat Eye Sunglasses @ Woolworths - R79
 
 
Black Shirt Dress with Pocket Detail and Waist Band @ Mr. Price - R119
Striped Black and White Sun Hat @ Mr. Price - R69
Multi strap Black and White Stiletto Heel @ Mr. Price -  R229
Pearl and Bar Stud Earrings @ Woolworths - R69
 
Black Textured Pinafore Dress @ Mr. Price - R99
Black Open Waist Mesh Pointy Court Shoe @ Mr. Price - R79
Chunky Pearl and Gold Necklace @ Woolworths - R170
Metallic Gold Snake Clutch @ Spree - R299
 

 
 
 
 
Looking back on 2013 I think that I did not only tried to look elegant, but I also tried to carry myself in such a way that people looked at me the same way that I looked at the elegant ladies when I was only 10 years old.  To some girls the concept of looking elegant is a lost art that may never be found and to others, such as me, it is something I wish to strive to every day of my life.
 
2013 was a year full of surprises and astounding world news.  I can only hope that 2014 will be much bigger and better than 2013.  May each and every one of you have a relaxing time with your families this Christmas and once again realize the true meaning of this wonderful time of the year.
C
xxx
 
 
 
 
All the fabulous fashion items I used in this post can be found at the following shops:
 
www.spree.co.za
www.foschini.co.za
www.mrp.com
www.woolworths.co.za
 


Real Men Wear Pink


In the 20th-centenary in America an article in the trade publication Earnshaw’s Infants’ Department in June 1918 said the following:

“The generally accepted rule is pink for the boys, and blue for the girls. The reason is that pink, being a more decided and stronger colour, is more suitable for the boy, while blue, which is more delicate and dainty, is prettier for the girl.”

The colour forecast on WGSN showed that pink will be a huge trend for the Spring/Summer clothing for men for 2014.  Many people don’t know this, but pink can’t be classified as a colour of its own, because it is only a lighter shade of red.

Today the majority of men still think that pink is only a colour that girls should wear.  I would disagree with them.  When dressed appropriately, pink is one of the most flattering colours for anyone and it can go from a laid back day look to a sophisticated evening look.

I decided to take one key item for men and to show them how to look fashion forward for 5 different occasions:
1.    Casual Day Look
2.    Comfortably Studying
3.    Late Afternoon Drinks
4.    Business Trip
5.    Suit Up



Casual Day look:

Key item – Blush pink shirt @ Woolworths:               R299
Demin shorts with turover @ Markhams:                  R380
Brown Cuff Watch @ Woolworths:                            R299
Brown Belt @ Woolworths:                                         R225
2 Toned brown shoes @ Woolworths:                        R599
Gold Frame Aviators @ Woolworths:                         R99
Canvas Laptop Case @ Woolworths:                        R299

Comfortably Studying:


Key item – Blush pink shirt @ Woolworths:               R299
Light grey pants @ Markhams:                                  R320
Clubman Reading Glasses @ Woolworths:               R150
Plain Trilby Hat @ Woolworths:                                  R150
Suede Brogues @ Woolworths:                                 R599
Cotton Shoulder Bag @ Woolworths:                         R225

Late Afternoon Drinks:


Key item – Blush pink shirt @ Woolworths:               R299
Dark Mint Rollup Pants @ Woolworths:                     R399
Half Frame Lounger Sunglasses @Woolworths:       R299
Sawyer Desert Boot @ Woolworths:                          R899
Nubuck Perforated Belt @ Woolworths:                    R299
Linen Blend Flat Cap Grey @ Woolworths:               R110

Business Trip:

Key item – Blush pink shirt @ Woolworths:               R299
Dark Navy Tailored Pants @ Woolworths:                R350
Brown Cuff Watch @ Woolworths:                            R299
Gold Frame Aviators @ Woolworths:                         R99
Brown Leather Brogues @ Woolworths:                    R599
Print Satchel Bag @ Woolworths:                              R599

Suit up:

Key item – Blush pink shirt @ Woolworths:               R299
Black Suit Jacket @ Woolworths:                              R799
Black Suit Pants @ Woolworths:                                R999
Black Textured Tie @ Woolworths:                            R99
Maroon Check Tie @ Woolworths:                            R99
Polka Dot Square Handkerchief @ Woolworths:       R49
Chunky Chrono Watch @ Woolworths:                     R350
Canvas Tablet Case @ Woolworths:                         R199


Now that you have seen that men can also look fashion forward in pink, please comment on the fashion post of today.  Tell me what you liked and did not like and what you wanted to see in a different way.

So guys take a chance and wear something pink and always remember:
            “Style is a way to say who you are without having to speak” ~ Rachael Zoe

C
xxx

http://www.markham.co.za/Catalogue/

http://www.woolworths.co.za/store/dept?N=4294954499
 

John-Wayne Keyser – an up and coming fashion designer with a bright future






On 2 November 2013 John-Wayne Keyser was announced as Designer of the year at the SANLAM North West School of Design’s Annual Graduation Fashion Show.  I was star struck by his amazing designs and wanted to find out more about this up and coming designer...

1.    John-Wayne, when your name was announced as “Designer of the year” what were the first emotions you experienced?
It was a rush of mixed emotions really, joy, accomplishment, pride happiness I can’t really describe the feeling.

2.    What was the inspiration for this spectacular collection you designed?
The theme we were given was confluence of cultures, while trying to come up with ideas I saw Selena Gomez music video for come and get it to me it was the perfect blend of pop and Indian cultures. The ideas just kept flowing after that.

3.    Is there anything you wanted to different with the collection / something that bothered you?
For me I poured my soul in to this collection in my eyes they were my works of art so I don't think id change a thing.

4.    What are your plans and dreams for the future?
My plans are to in the next 5 years have a successful studio running here in Sa and then in a few years to branch my business overseas.

5.    Do you have any advice for people out there who have dreams of becoming a fashion designer?
Keep fighting for that dream, never let anyone tell you your not good enough! Believe in yourself and dream big!

6.    What do you enjoy the most about designing?
What I enjoy most about designing, mmm I would say it's the whole process from sketching, patterns, cutting sewing and finishing off. it's amazing to see a sketch you drew come to life in front of your eyes.

7.    What are your 3 best fashion tips for other people for everyday fashion?
1 Less is more; don't overdo it with the accessories,
2 Be yourself don't wear something because everyone is wearing it; bring your personality out through your clothing choices.
3 Don't match the belt with the shoes, mix it . ;)

8.    Who are your personal top 3 fashion designers and why?
1. Gert-Johan Coetzee not only because his my mentor but also for the fact that his always pushing the boundaries and coming up with new ideas.
2. Anel Botha, I Adore Anel's romantic design style and her attention to detail.
3. Kobus Rautenbach, his designs always fit perfectly and his designs exude romance and femininity.

9.    If you can choose only 5 fashion items when you are travelling what would it be?
Black skinny jeans, my black military boots, graphic tee, clean underwear, (haha), and a well-made waist coat.

10.  What can we expect to see from you in the future?
Keep a look out a have a bright future planed and I won’t give up until I’ve reached my dreams.



South Africa is full of fashion designers, some more known to the public than others, some even made name internationally.  From my point of view, John-Wayne Keyser is a guy that deserves international fame in the future.

For more of John-Wayne’s designs from the Graduation Fashion Show go check out this link:  https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10151666413326793.1073741861.142869021792&type=1

C
xxx

Assistant backstage at North West School of Design Graduation Show 2013



Here I am with Gert-Johan Coetzee, one of South-Africa's top fashion designers and a personal idol.



Last Saturday (2 November 2013) night I had the experience of a lifetime.  I had the honour of working backstage as an assistant at the North West School of Design’s annual Graduation Show.  And what an amazing night it was!  I never really thought that a fashion show had so many aspects that have to run fluently to ensure a marvellous show.  Each and every one of the designers had spectacular designs and amazed the crowd with it.  John-Wayne Keyser was announced as Designer of the year and I fell in love with his collection.  It was elegant, timeless and most definitely one of a kind.  A collection that I would LOVE to have in my wardrobe.

To me, the biggest highlight of the evening was meeting Gert-Johan Coetzee, one of South-Africa’s top designers who is truly an inspiration, not only for all the up and coming designers, but he is also an inspiration to me.  I recently needed some motivation to peruse my dreams and this following statement of Gert-Johan Coetzee on Twitter gave me the necessary motivation and inspiration: “Fashion designer who believes you can never dream too big”.  He is most definitely one of my idols!

Furthermore I took some pictures with Anel Botha from Anel Botha Couture who is also one of South-Africa’s top designers, Francoise Jeanne de Villiers, the beautiful Miss. Klerksdorp and then of course Kobus Rautenbach from Kobus Rautenbach Couture. 

I would like to thank the all people who made it possible for me to assist backstage;
North West School of Design’s Stacey Grant, Lisa Hay De Villiers and Marlene Oosthuizen, dean of North West School of Design. 

And then I would like to thank one person in particular, Kobus Rautenbach. Without Kobus none of this would have been possible.  He arranged for me to be an assistant backstage where I also assisted him in the dressing room with the models on the rehearsal on Friday night.  Thank you so much for making it possible for me to have the experience of a lifetime.


 

After Saturday night, working at a fashion show wasn’t just a dream anymore, it was a reality.  I would like to encourage each and every one of you to follow your dreams, do what you love and work extremely hard to turn your dreams into a reality. 

Steve Martin once said “Be so good they can’t ignore you”.  With that in mind, hopefully one day in my future I will work as an assistant at SA Fashion Week.

C
xxx




 



Anel Botha from Anel Botha Couture and me.

Francoise Jeanne de Villiers and me.


The AMAZING Kobus Rautenbach from Kobus Rautenbach Couture who made this amazing night possible for me.


The beautiful Miss. Klerksdorp 2013, Tumi Boitumelo Monare and me.

A New Beginning





“If loving fashion is a crime, we all plead guilty”.


This time of year everything comes to an end.  Students start with their final exams, end of the year parties are being held and everyone tries to finish up all their work before Christmas.  For some this may be a time of stress, over working and a rush to get everything done.  For me?  For me this is time for A New Beginning.



Celebrating A New Beginning I would like to give to you the best fashion advice and inspire you to look at things in a different way at this time of the year.  A New Beginning not only celebrates a new start, but also fresh start.  So now i bring to you my fashion inspiration and news for A New Beginning.

C
xxx


Balenciaga S/S 2014 Paris



Balenciaga S/S 2014 Paris

Elie Saab S/S 2014 Paris Womenswear





http://www.woolworths.co.za/
http://www.mrp.com/en_za/

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