The hero of today’s Woman-Crush Wednesday is photographer Cindy Sherman, who’s made a career of taking selfies since the 1970s. She was even awarded a MacArthur Fellowship (a.k.a. “the Genius Award) in 1995, which paid her $500,000 doled out over the course of five years. Not bad for playing dress-up with your camera, right?
She started out dressing up like characters in fictitious movies, then staging scenes and photographing herself in them.
She then went on to re-create historical portraits based on European oil paintings from the 15th century through the 19th century. DOZENS of them. Then she dressed herself up as the scariest clowns ever and did a series of clown portraits. Some of her most provocative photos came most recently, when she dressed up as the aging, super-rich society women who often buy her photographs for hundreds of thousands of dollars.
In addition to making thought-provoking works of art, Sherman’s a darling of the fashion world, as well. In 2011, she was the face(s) of cosmetics giant M.A.C., and she’s done campaigns for Balenciaga, Marc Jacobs and Rei Kawakubo (among others).
This is one of her three faces for M.A.C. One of the things that’s most remarkable about Cindy Sherman is the way she challenges her viewers by portraying uncomfortable characters. (Have you learned about the concept of the “male gaze” in your media classes yet?)
So if you love playing dress-up and taking selfies—stick with it! If you play your cards right, you could end up with exhibits in every major museum in the world, plus a no-strings-attached, half-million-dollar fellowship.
Wanna know more about Cindy Sherman, like why she won a genius award for taking pictures of nothing but herself for 40 years? Check out this interview.
Is anyone else obsessed with America’s Next Top Model? If you are, you definitely remember Leila Goldkuhl from last season. She was super unique, fashionable and she worked her gap teeth. (Mine have a slight gap, too.) Although she didn’t win, she’s doing great things, anyway. She recently signed with NEXT Model Management and I’ve started seeing her on the front pages of a lot of websites. Go, Leila!
As I am sure most of you know, director Baz Luhrmann recently released his film adaptation of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s classic novel, The Great Gatsby. The movie stars Leonardo DiCaprio, Carey Mulligan and Tobey Maguire (to name a few). However, I was most excited for the visual effects. Luhrmann’s movies are famous for being visual extravaganzas, and Gatsby is no exception.
I had high expectations for this film because I really love the book—and for the most part, I was not disappointed. Carey Mulligan made a great Daisy, and DiCaprio played the nostalgic, idealistic Gatsby well. Their chemistry was really evident. My only critique of the movie is that parts of it are so melodramatic that they feel a little like a farce of the book.
However, the movie definitely had its high points. Along with the fantastic music in the film, the costumes are spectacular. Miuccia Prada designed all of Daisy’s opulent flapper dresses. The movie and costumes might be set in the Roaring Twenties, but many of the creations could be worn today. Drop-waists are coming back into style, as are fringe and crystal embellishments.
I love flapper fashion. (I was even a flapper for Halloween this year!) I think the clothing is just so fun and feminine. I love the silhouettes and colors, and the Art Deco details that make each outfit so unique. While flappers might be a thing of the past, flapper fashion is still relevant in your modern wardrobe. You could take small Gatsby-inspired items and merge them into your closet. Look for drop-waists, Art Deco designs, beading and lace or netting.
This summer I was listening to one of my all-time favorite songs, “Otis“ by Jay-Z and Kanye West, and I was inspired. I started to sketch the outfits that I pictured in my head when I heard the song. I watched the music video and pulled colors from it (as well as the album cover for Watch the Throne). Then I gave the collection a hip-hop feel, and ’90′s silhouettes. I found out later that the ‘90s revival would be a trend, which I’m really proud of. (Future trend forecaster right here!)
I was thrilled with what I saw, but I had one problem—I couldn’t really sew. I mean, I struggled through Halloween costumes in fourth grade and my mom always ended up finishing them. I was registered to take a clothing class at my school but I wasn’t sure if I would be able to catch on fast enough or well enough. All I knew was that I needed to see these looks go down the runway.
In the fall, when clothing class started, we did something my teacher calls Boot Camp. We learned every part of the sewing machine and its purpose, all of the types of fabric and their make-up, as well as various sewing skills: making button holes, putting on zippers, cutting fabric and using patterns. It was so much fun. And now I’m here—20 days until the show, finishing up the last outfit, choosing accesories and getting butterflies!
Here are the things that inspired my collection:
My initial inspiration board.
And my Pinterest board, which you can check out here:
I’m super excited and I hope you are, too. Look out for an update to hear how everything goes!
I just finished my returning application to be on the BP. Fashion Board next year! I’ve had so much fun learning about fashion trends, careers and Nordstrom. Hopefully, I will get to participate next year, too.
As I was thinking about my experiences on the Fashion Board so far, I remembered the project I made as a part of last year’s application. I created a fashion journal full of collages to show what trends I loved. Although it’s from a full year ago (I can’t believe it), it’s still surprisingly relevant:
I love finding old treasures. Whether they are from an antique shop, a thrift store or even my mother’s closet, each piece has so much character and history. Everything you find is so unique and I adore that. Because you can’t find many of that specific treasure (especially in the same place), you basically have a one-of-a-kind piece!
While my mother was cleaning out her closet the other day, she found a bag she hadn’t used since she was in college: a vintage Dooney & Bourke. I instantly fell in love.
After I found this gem, I was inspired to go and raid my grandmother’s closet for more treasures, which is where I found this adorable Renoir handbag.
These are only two of the many beautiful bags that I found. If you find one that’s a little beat up, get it anyway! As I always say, “It adds character.”
Now go out and get yourself a vintage treasure! You could even carry a vintage or antique clutch for prom. How cute is that?
My posts this week are going to be pretty short. Sorry guys! My life is kind of crazy right now with finals coming up and a recent family emergency, but I had to show you this photo:
I love this Vanessa Jackman photo of Danish model Zarina in her bright yellow raincoat. I have to admit I am drawn toward bright, bordering on neon, colors. They just seem so happy and carefree to me. In fact, I like yellow so much that I painted my bedroom a bright gold color. I know the color of the year is emerald, but I will be incorporating some sunny yellow into my spring wardrobe. It’s eye-catching, carefree and irrefutably happy.
“Be yourself, not your idea of what you think somebody else’s idea of yourself should be.” —Henry David Thoreau
I have always considered fashion to be an expression of who you are as a person. Nothing, not even fashion “rules,” should stand in the way of expressing yourself by dressing the way you want to.
Growing up in the Southeast (North Carolina) and attending the school that I do, I have spent my life swimming through an ocean of preppiness. When I look around, I see polos, bright prints (Lilly Pulitzer), anchors, pastel shorts, little pink whales (Vineyard Vines) and tons of monograms. I have nothing against the style; it’s just not me (not usually, anyway). Sometimes, my combat boots and my graphic tees feel like a fashion lifeboat, keeping me afloat when surrounded by preppy fashions that are cute but uncomfortable for me.
Some days, I’m afraid to wear certain things that don’t “fit in” with what other girls at school wear. I have to tell myself to be confident in what I wear, no matter the style. I am a firm believer in expressing yourself. If it makes you happy, whether it be Lilly Pulitzer or Lily White, go for it!
I always admire girls who have the confidence to go against the grain. Just because you prefer black to pink or combat boots to sandals does not make you any less “in style” than others. Be free to wear and do as you wish!
I’ve always been interested in learning how to design clothes. In all honesty, I’ve never been that good at it, but that’s probably because I’ve never really taken the time to learn. Fashion sketches are so beautiful, and I love that every designer has a signature style. No two fashion sketches are alike; each and every one is perfectly unique.
I love these designs by up-and-comer Isabella Vinicius. The third dress is to die for!
In the spirit of prom, I thought I would stretch my creativity and take a shot at designing a dress. I know it’s a little late for this year’s prom 2013, but I’m actually thinking about trying to construct it for next year.
Now, I know that I’m no Alexander McQueen, but I’m pretty happy with the way it turned out, especially for a first try. This is just a basic concept design, and it definitely needs a few tweaks and detail work—but what do you guys think? I would love to hear some feedback.
If you haven’t completed your prom look yet, definitely check out the Prom Shop for all your shoe, accessory and dress needs.
In the world of fashion, you can draw inspiration from just about anywhere. Today I stumbled upon these two stunning black and white photos and instantly fell in love. So I used Polyvore to create an inspiration set based on the two images.
I am absolutely obsessed with striped pants right now. They are, in my opinion, one of the best ways to make a statement. However, if you wear striped pants it’s best to keep the rest of the outfit simple and understated. In the above example, a plain gray tee and a black blazer are the perfect way to downplay your patterned pants.