Life & Style Blog - Featured

A spring in your step

19 September 2013, by Rachael Ciccarelli

Shoes-1

Image sources: img3.stylesaint.com, guestofaguest.com, farm3.staticflickr.com.

So, it’s the end of winter and you’re itching to buy something new. Something to shake off the last of the gross rain and blustering winds (HELLO, weatherman can you hear me? This week’s wintery tantrums have been UNACCEPTABLE). And mostly, you want something that will not judge the months you spent indoors and pasta-adjacent. Presumably God invented shoes for all your post-winter shopping needs, because they’re the perfect things to buy when you want to give your look a little lift but you’re not quite ready to commit to anything that zips. And so, I bring you the latest in footwear – an article I probably should have called “two shoe trends that will make you say ‘REALLY?!’”.


Shoes-2

Image sources: 1. Bailey Ballet flat, $129.95, from Witchery; 2. Lily ankle strap ballet, $29.95, from Sportsgirl; 3. Acre heel, $139.95, from Nine West.


Trend 1: all white (still)

I KNOW, I KNOW. You hate white shoes. They remind you of your mother/ your 80s fashion mistakes/ your mother’s 80s fashion mistakes. But they’ve been back for a while and given our current obsession with monochrome, I can’t see them skipping off any time soon. I personally love them: crisp and clean, because nobody has seen them since 1988 they automatically give your outfit an edge - and all you have to do is chuck them on. Bonus, white goes with just about everything. You can make this trend soft and femme in ballet flats; or powerful and linear in those Alexander Wang style heels from Nine West; or super monochrome in the black and white Sportsgirl flats that are pretty damn close to the ones in the street style image at the top. Just give it a go. I won’t force you to wear shoulder pads too. Promise.


Shoes-3

Image sources: 1. Mephisto Helen, $169, from Paul Carroll; 2. Eloise flatform, $79.95, from Sportsgirl; 3. Scarlett, $59.95, from Novo.


Trend 2: things that look like Birkenstocks

Yes, another eyebrow raiser. You can blame The Bloggers/ Alexa Chung for this one (and maybe Celine’s ridiculous and weirdly excellent mink lined Birkenstocks) – but the official footwear of German tourists everywhere is back in fashion. And after a few good years of chunky footwear being in vogue, it’s barely a surprise. As per usual, it’s all about the contrast – sleek loose tailored clothing with an awkward shoe: a balance of beautiful and ugly. You can wear them with your ripped up jeans and your Breton striped shirt too. If you’re still not convinced, consider this an opportunity to wear sinfully comfortable shoes and be at the height of fashion: those are two factors that don’t happen in tandem very often, especially with regards to footwear, so savour it while it lasts.

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Category: Featured
Tags: Fashion, Sportsgirl, Witchery

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Accessory of the season

12 September 2013, by Rachael Ciccarelli

Pet Accessory

Image source: karlismyunkle.files.wordpress.com.

I've spent the past week or so waking up to a stream of candid, fantastic "wish I was there" images from New York Fashion Week (courtesy of Instagram), which is a constant reminder that I'm not actually at THE fashion event of the year. And because I apparently like to torture myself, I follow it up with a hearty peruse through the runway images and top it all off by reading show reviews from bloggers and online magazines. All in all, it's an exercise in social media FOMO (that's Fear Of Missing Out) - because if I can't be there, I'm sure as hell going to live it! I've seen so many photos of walking cheekbones in garments that are best described as sculptural artworks both delicate and bold: basically, a lot of conceptual fashion at it's most glorious. And of all of it, the ultimate accessory?


Pet Accessory-1

Image source: style.com.

Afghans at Jen Kao. LOOK AT THEIR GLORIOUS MANES. Their long locks and elegant form is a perfect match for the models and their glossy, parted 70's hair. Who even notices the clothes when those canine super models are strutting on the stage?


Pet Accessory-2

Image sources: fashionista.com, glendafors.files.wordpress.com and 2.bp.blogspot.com.

Fashion's fascination with animals is certainly nothing new - the biggest hitters are all animal people. Karl Lagerfeld's cat Choupette, is probably the most well known: in typically eccentric Lagerfeld style, this cat has it's own twitter account, has been in editorial fashion shoots (above) and has two maids and an iPad. Valentino has his pugs that famously have their own seat on his private jet and the late, great Yves Saint Laurent had a series of black and white French bulldogs all called Moujik. I'm calling it: the ultimate must-have accessory? A pet. But remember, a dog isn't just for spring 2013, it's for life.

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Category: Featured
Tags: Fashion, Trends

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Three pieces to change the season

05 September 2013, by Rachael Ciccarelli

ABCDEF

Image source: wallpaper.showded.com.

If the blissful change in temperature hasn’t alerted you, I’m sure your legions of Facebook friends posting photos of cherry blossoms and/or blue skies have: spring’s springing. While my sinuses (currently aflame with allergies) aren’t that happy about it, you’d better believe the rest of me is – as far as I’m concerned, warm breezes, longer days and baby animals are a recipe for happiness. The proverbial garnish would be the news that you no longer have to dress in approximately 17 layers in order to survive the day: return to your neglected summer clothes and start contemplating them again. OK, so it’s not exactly hot enough to bust out a mini dress, and maybe your legs have turned translucent over the winter and might frighten the children, but tell your niece to stop crying at the horror of your ghostly shins because IT’S GOING TO BE OK. All you need is a few (and I mean that) trans-seasonal pieces to layer up to make the transition between icicles and searing heat.

Spring2013-2

Image sources: 1. Western shirt, from Levis; 2. Marley Panel shift dress, $89.95, from Portmans; 3. Delia flat form wedge, $149.95, from Witchery.

  1. A lightweight shirt
    If you don’t have a chambray shirt yet, SPRING IS THE SEASON, PEOPLE. Wear it open like a jacket, tied over your favourite maxi, relaxed with a pair of jeans or shorts – it’s the perfect weight and colour for indecisive-but-usually-warm weather. If you can’t do chambray because you were scarred by the 70s or the 90s or whatever, any structured lightweight shirt will do – a drill cotton or linen will fit the bill just as well (but I cannot say no to denim. It’s my weakness).
  2. A shift dress
    I love the resurgence of the shift dress simply because it’s such a versatile piece. This one from Portmans is perfect – button down, clean white and with just a touch of sleeve: you can wear it to work with a blazer and fitted pants or leggings; you can wear it on the weekends layered up with an open chambray shirt (ahem), or softly tucked into some baggy boyfriend jeans or a pair of shorts; you can wear it out for drinks with a big piece of jewellery and heels or sandals (depending on how fancy your drinks are). Once it’s hot enough, you can even wear it over your bathers: it’ll take you from the beach to bar and beyond.
  3. A pair of chunky sandals
    The easiest way to switch your outfit from winter to spring? Throw a pair of sandals on. Nothing telegraphs “it’s warm and I love it” like exposed feet. While it doesn’t *have* to be a flatform like the Witchery ones pictured above (although, you’re getting height without pain, so I don’t know why you wouldn’t go there), I like a heavier sandal in spring – it’s still covered enough to wear with bulkier clothes like jeans, but light enough to wear with a little dress.

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Category: Featured
Tags: Fashion, Portmans, Witchery

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I love you, dad: part two

30 August 2013, by Rachael Ciccarelli

ABCDEF

Image source: artdecogal.com.

Seeing as Father’s Day is now just around the corner, let’s take a look at dads that might not respond to the gadgets or cookery things so helpfully proffered in my first post "I love you Dad (Part One)". Believe it or not, some dads – specifically, MY dad – just can’t interact with toys. Anything with a computer chip, aside from his mobile phone is not to be trusted. He calls Facebook “that bloody face”. And as far as he’s concerned, most things from the kitchen could just as easily be bought if you know the right people and places, or even better: made by a professional (in the case of my dad, that would be his mum or mine). So, let’s take a look at things that will ostensibly make great presents for my dad – and heck, they might work for yours as well… I don’t know your life.

I Love You Dad

Image sources: 1. Zegna Z, $80, from Myer; 2. JAG camo stripe tee, $49.95, from Myer; 3. Sony noise cancelling headphones, $129.95, from Myer.

  1. If there’s one thing my dad does understand, it’s beautiful Italian designers – his dad was from there, he goes there every year, and one of the main lessons I’ve taken from him is to buy a little quality rather than a lot of junk. Of all the beautiful Italian brands, his favourite is probably Zegna – an incredible brand best known for gorgeous suits and ridiculously luxe silk ties that I couldn’t possibly afford… but I can definitely afford their fragrance. As dad usually has a stash of cologne at home, in his car and at his office, I know Zegna’s signature fragrance; Z, will be well received and even better, worn.
  2. Because my dad is a work fiend, his casual wardrobe gets a little ignored. He’s got this really impressive stash of shirts made for him by some dude who also makes shirts for some designer he knows through some family member in Italy (side note: all of Dad’s stories have at least three or more connections) but he could probably do with a few extra bits to wear when he’s merely thinking about work rather than elbow deep in another meeting. I don’t know about you guys, but I have no idea what dad’s waist measurements are – so, t-shirts it is.
  3. Here’s the left of field present that dad didn’t even know he wanted mostly because he didn’t know it existed: noise-cancelling headphones. I know I’ve gone on about how dad doesn’t do toys, but he’s comfortable with the headphone (and his old iPod nano which he takes so he can be accompanied by the belting vocals of Englebert Humperdick as he walks) – you plug them in, you put them on, sound comes out. Not much button pressing required. But these are even better for my dad who is no stranger to airplane travel – it’ll drown out the engine sounds and help him to sleep on those disgusting long haul flights so he can arrive beautiful and fresh for Italy.

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Category: Featured
Tags: Dad, Myer

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