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    Experimenting with a variety of techniques and fabrics, the designer behind London-based brand HELENAMANZANO considers her work to be more like an organic stream of consciousness. “I like to see the design process as a larger body of work and a constant conversation in which a range of techniques and shapes are developed and reinterpreted,” says Helena about her design process.

    For Spring/Summer 2016, Manzano looks to artist Dorothea Tanning’s paintings for inspiration, where the artist’s women and sculptures act as textual reference. Which is evident in the designer’s collection, where raised pinstripes, papery silk tops, and 3D-constructed wool offer noteworthy design details that tie back to Tanning’s textural references. Below, we talk with Helena about her design process, her secret botany passion, and the coolest place to visit outside of London.


    Shop all HELENAMANZANO here



    Name: Helena Manzano
    Hometown: Almería, Spain
    Astrological sign: Cancer
    Hidden Talent: I can swim a full length underwater without breathing.
    What's your current Spring/Summer 2016 collection inspiration? I don't usually work with seasonal inspiration, but for Spring/Summer 2016, I was looking at Dorothea Tanning's paintings—her women and sculptures for textural reference. It was more about bringing an unsettling mood to the pieces.
    What's your design process? My way of working is very fluid. I like to see it as as a larger body of work and a constant conversation in which a range of techniques and shapes are developed and reinterpreted. I don't really make distinctions between where each collection begins and ends— I'm always searching for new ways to push the materiality of fabrics. A lot of the process comes from experimenting with materials and remodeling the outcome. 
    Coolest place to visit where you currently reside: I live in London, but I like leaving to North Yorkshire Moors as often as I can.
    If you were to do another job besides designing, what would it be? A botanist
    Click through the slideshow to see all products from HELENAMANZANO  3D Ballet Top in blue/linen Banador Top in white

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    We know. Our unabashed proud parent symptom knows no bounds. If we had a bumper sticker for five of the eight OC fam members that made the LVMH Finalist cut, wheatpasting would take on a whole new look. With a chance to win a $300,000-euro grant and mentoring from OC’s own Carol and Humberto, the stakes are unequivocally high, and OC’s candidates—including AALTO, Alyx, VEJAS, Wales Bonner, and Y/Project—are equally as captivating.

    In honor of the Finalists, we’ll be spotlighting each nominee with a one-on-one interview with OC’s fashion director, Carol Song (our in-house tastemaker who culled and curated these emerging brands) each week. This time around, we speak with Y/Project creative director Glenn Mertens.



    It’s never easy being the predecessor of a respected artist and founder. This is the task that Glenn Martens faced when he followed in the footsteps of Y/Project Creative Director’s Yohan Serfaty, after his death in 2013. Needless to say, the designer has without a doubt succeeded, taking the brand in a new direction, curating a fresh identity with cutting-edge pieces that nod to ’90s minimalism for both its men’s and women’s collections.

    For Pre-Spring 2016, sculpted bust V-Neck Tops make for imaginative design details that complement Y/Project’s new version of the everyday bottom: cut-out trousers and shorts. Below, the designer talks finding beauty in the unappealing, following your instinct, while catching us (and himself) up on French culture.


    Shop all Y/Project here



    CAROL SONG: How did your brand come to life?
    GLENN MARTENS: I took over the creative direction of Y/Project in 2013. The first year was a clear transition between what the brand used to stand for and what I envisioned it to become. Since last summer, I think we have fully confirmed our "new" identity. We know what we stand for, and now it's just about having fun.

    As a designer, what skill or trait do you feel sets you apart?
    I'm very dual. I'm open to anything. Some pieces are full experimentations in construction and others are direct adaptations from what I've seen in the street. I refer to any subculture I want to, or any historic era I feel like. Sometimes you’ll find all these elements in one single piece. I hear this feeling of freedom is what attracts our customer.

    Were your skills self taught?
    It’s always a bit of both. Working for other brands is the best school one can have, but at the end of the day you have to foll

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    Directed by Thierry Demaizière and Alban Teurlai, Reset examines newly-appointed dance director Benjamin Millepeid’s attempt at modernizing the Paris Opera Ballet during his production of Clear, Loud, Bright, Forward. Presented at Tribeca Film Festival, the documentary explores the former Lincoln Center principal dancer in his innovative attempts of fighting the bureaucratic rigidity and suffocating hierarchy of one of the world’s most celebrated dance institutions.

    Casually slumped at his desk chair sporting a tattered T-shirt and sweats, the first scene opens on Millepied bopping away to Nico Muhly’s latest score for his production of Clear, Loud, Bright, Forward. Millepied’s laid-back attitude and relaxed approach sets the tone for the company and the rest of the movie. From replacing the floor boards for something more shock resistant to his open and interactive teaching style, Millepied’s fresh approach is seen as a radical reformation. The embarrassing lack of diversity is another issue we see Millepied tackles—being the first director in the company’s history to appoint a woman of color as a principal dancer.

    Technology is another facet the dance director actively employed, suggesting dancers use smartphones to film their movements. In other efforts to bring the Paris Opera into a digital space Millepied innovated 3e Scène or 3rd Stage, an online platform which includes over forty installments of music and ballet.

    Given his past collaborations with Iris van Herpen, it was only natural Millipied would enlist the Dutch fashion designer for Clear, Loud, Bright, Forward. Leotards of metallic chrome lattices set a cool futuristic vibe—more akin to contemporary dance. Unlike those traditional tightly cinched corsets and voluminous tulle skirts, van Herpen’s costumes fit to the body—not the other way around. Set design was yet another area of innovation by United Visual Artists, where flashes of saturated lighting infused a vibrant intensity, all too familiar to the high-def digital spaces that we inhabit.

    Aside from documenting the dance director’s bold reformations, Reset pays homage to the unconditional discipline, dedication, and inevitable suffering of the modern-day ballerina. A look into his countless rehearsals and sessions, the viewer sees Millepied inspiring pleasure in dance. Muscular bodies move in unison evolving into a flourishing kaleidoscope of elegant entanglements. But the beauty of ballet rests not only in perfection but pleasure and emotion. Millepied asserts: “Every sensation is present. The sensation of space, of time. The emotional exchange with your partners.”

    Fearing that the dancers are so consumed by the anxieties of perfection, Millepied anticipates that they’ve lost the love for their craft. The strict hierarchy of this regime coupled with an already fragile career has inevitably turned them into “wallpaper.” “You have to feel the emotion of what you’re seeing,” he explains.

    Millepied’s progressive vision for the Paris Opera Ballet proved successful. The opening night of Clear, Loud, Bright, Forward raised over 1 million Euro, three more times the amount than ever before. In February of 2016 however, the dance director resigned leaving a legacy of change. Capturing the dramatic seas of change which Millepied incited, Reset exhibits a dearth of visual splendor and suspenseful storytelling. For anyone who works in the arts, fashion, or the like, the directors aptly exposed and explored the rigor and intensity of the creative process.

    Images courte

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    Anna Wise opens up Kendrick Lamar’s languid “These Walls” with a forceful moan before diving straight into the hook, assuredly repeating “If these walls could talk.” It was this standout from Lamar’s To Pimp A Butterfly album that would earn Wise her first Grammy for Best Rap/Sung Collaboration this year. And while the mainstream audience may have felt this was the singer’s breakthrough moment, they had yet to realize that Wise’s walls had spoken for quite some time, long before the Academy recognized her voice from the other side.

    But getting up onstage to accept a Grammy wasn’t always in the books for Wise. There was a time when the thought of having anyone outside of her room hear her voice seemed unthinkable.

    “You know when you think that your bedroom door is soundproof, and you close it and sing your heart out?” Wise asks. “That was me growing up.” In fact, it’s this childhood belief that privacy is possible in your parent’s home that eventually led to a family friend overhearing Anna singing and tinkering on the piano. “Whenever I’m writing or performing, it’s like I go into a trance,” the vocalist remarks. When she first came out of this trance, her parent’s friend told her how amazing she was and expressed that she should consider pursuing music.

    While the family friend (thankfully) recognized her gifted voice, Wise didn’t appreciate the attention at first. “She thought she was doing me a favor, but she actually freaked me the fuck out; I never played the piano if I knew that anyone was home. I was so embarrassed.”

    Luckily, this sheepish encounter didn’t dissuade Wise from quickly finding a challenging new audience outside of her room. “I always had a sense of self and was really strong-willed, but I didn’t know how to ‘become’ a musician,” Wise admits. After getting kicked out of vocal jazz school, Wise enrolled in the Berklee School of Music, where she found herself frustrated with constricting theory classes while simultaneously finding solace in a hip-hop ensemble and personal work outside of the classroom. Like most artists, the confines of the classroom weren’t where Wise got her first break. As fate would have it, it was during this period that another bedroom singing session led to her next endeavor. One day, while practicing in her room, Wise’s new roommate (and future bandmate) Dane Orr overheard her and was impressed (“Again, still had not realized that closed door doesn’t equal soundproof” she jokes). After a gentle tap on the door, the two created nine songs together within three months and released their first EP as the experimental duo Sonnymoon.

    Less than a year later, Sonnymoon’s track “Nursery Boys” found its way to Kendrick Lamar’s ears, who called Wise and invited her to Carson, California to work on his now-acclaimed album, good kid m.A.A.d. City. After several months of 18-hour days, Wise would make multiple contributions to Lamar’s album—including the underrated highlight “Real”—cementing herself as part of the rapper’s tight-knit Top Dawg Entertainment family.

    In between recording with Lamar and performing with Sonnymoon, Wise continued working on her solo work, focusing on songs that dealt with her own experiences as a female in the music industry. “I wanted to talk about how it

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    We all have that moment where Friday night rolls around and a Netflix binge is the primary “event” option. In order to cure your major case of FOMO, we’ve teamed up with The Mirror Cube, a happenings site that features events recommended by artists. With their expert panel of visual artists, actors, writers, and directors, The Mirror Cube brings you the lowdown on what shows, screenings, and exhibits you should check out each week in New York and Los Angeles.



    NY: Purple Rain at IFC Center

    April 29 & 30 at 11:59 PM
    Picked by: Chloe Wise
    What: The 1984 musical drama is returning to theaters for a limited run in memory of its composer and star, Prince.

    Why Go: Purple Rain is not a very good film, but it is a great album, and the film acts as a showcase for thrilling musical numbers that suggest what could've been one of greatest concert films of all time. A young Prince's charisma, physicality, and onstage talent—and the terrific songs—make a midnight screening of Purple Rain a fitting celebration of the late singer-songwriter's life and music.


    NY: Deerhunter at Webster Hall
    April 30 at 9 PM
    Picked by: Anna Gray
    What: The indie rock band headline a show at Webster Hall in the East Village.

    Why Go: Deerhunter are on the tail end of a tour in support of their latest release, 2015's Fading Frontier, which is one of the best-reviewed and most accessible albums of the group's career. Following a serious car accident, frontman Bradford Cox is back on stage and giving his all to every show. Pitchfork called Fading Frontier, "Deerhunter's most content, warm, and plainspoken work to date."


    NY: Long Day's Journey Into Night at American Airlines Theatre
    April 3-June 26
    What: Roundabout Theatre Company presents a new production of Eugene O'Neill's play about a family in crisis.

    Why Go: The Roundabout production features an all-star cast of Jessica Lange, Gabriel Byrne, Michael Shannon, and John Gallagher Jr. performing O'Neill's semi-autobiographical masterpiece as directed by Jonathan Kent. In The New York Times, critic Ben Brantley wrote, "Mr. Byrne gives such a beautiful performance—a haunted and haunting incarnation of fraying majesty."


    LA: Comedy Bang! Bang! Live! at The Theatre at Ace Hotel
    April 30 at 8 PM
    Picked by: Raviv Ullman
    What: A live taping of Scott Aukerman's popular podcast and IFC series with special guests.

    Why Go: In its various incarnations, Comedy Bang! Bang! has long been a favorite of comedy fans, and if you've ever listened to the podcast or watched the television show, it's easy to see why. Aukerman's absurdist humor is buoyed by comedian guests who improvise wildly s

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  • 04/28/16--21:00: Mercury’s in Retrograde
  • Because Mercury is in retrograde, there’s no sense in going out and galavanting this weekend. Instead, make yourself a Jaded Lady (or two) and prepare for languid afternoons firmly planted within the verdant splendor of your urban garden. Travel time, read a book, and slip into another dimension with our latest set of new designers to get you into (any) mood or mode. Need a little more inspo? Click through our slideshow and read below about our latest designers below.

    Alessandra Rich
    Let your inner ultra soft femme melt into frills of lace and silk moire. Inspired by the story of a girl who runs away to get married, Alessandra Rich’s latest collection calls upon the romantic in all of us (can we get a fuck yes for gigot-style sleeves?). With her off-the-shoulder dresses, trumpet hems, and tier of bows, Rich let’s you wear your heart wherever you damn please.


    Vaquera
    Citing cosplay tutorials and a design deconstruction mentorship by DIS magazine’s founding members, it’s no surprise that Vaquera expresses a raw, uninhibited energy. A welcoming palette of rustic browns and taupes are married with wrapped silhouettes, gathered details, ties, and lacing. An arbiter of a certain kind of postgender romanticism, Vaquera infuses new life and legacy to those flowy peasant top.


    HELENAMANZANO 
    Thinking of her collections as more of a stream of consciousness and less of a precariously curated story, Helena Manzano takes the design process to a whole new level. This seems all too fitting at a time when brands are pressure cooked into releasing up to ten collections a year. For Spring/Summer 2016, Manzano looked to Dorothea Tanning’s florid, Surrealist paintings. Finite pinstripes are raised to create a subtle tactile intrigue while papery silk bodice tops evoke an almost visceral aspect in the designer’s delicate dance of sculptor vs. the sculpted.


    DAISY 
    Entitled “Pure Country,” Renee Warne and Gibson Fox debut their line DAISY with an unabashedly western design agenda. In their off-kilter approach, cowhide vests and shorts are neatly laced at the side, it’s like gingham on speed with their array of dresses and crop tops. And don’t forget the shiny black leather bralette to take you to that ’80s leather bar you’ve dying to relive.Katerina wears Alessandra Rich Dress and RFORM Adoration Wide Ribbon Choker in black (All items not linked availble only in Opening Ceremony stores). Photography by Delilah Jesinkey; Styling by Stefanie Modares; Talent is Katerina Tannenbaum and Halle Lagatta
    Halle wears Alessandra Rich Blouse.Halle wears Alessandra Rich Dress. Katerina wears Vaquera Dress.Katerina wears HELENAMANZANO 3D Ballet Top and  HELENAMANZANO

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    We know. Our unabashed proud parent symptom knows no bounds. If we had a bumper sticker for five of the eight OC fam members that made the LVMH Finalist cut, wheatpasting would take on a whole new look. With a chance to win a $300,000-euro grant and mentoring from OC’s own Carol and Humberto, the stakes are unequivocally high, and OC’s candidates—including AALTO, Alyx, VEJAS, Wales Bonner, and Y/Project—are equally as captivating.

    In honor of the Finalists, we’ll be spotlighting each nominee with a one-on-one interview with OC’s fashion director, Carol Song (our in-house tastemaker who culled and curated these emerging brands) each week. 


    After her Central Saint Martins graduate collection Afrique won the L’Oréal Professionnel Talent Award, it would only be a matter of time before Wales Bonner would receive its LVMH Prize Finalist nomination. One of the designer’s many strengths is her integrative approach. Culling from literature, composition, critical theory, and historical sources, the designer creates thoughtfully provoking and elegantly contextualized collections. Examining representations of black male sexuality and identity—Bonner’s work provides a much needed voice in fashion exploring ideas of race, gender, sexuality, and class.

    Because Bonner’s socio-politically critical eye is now more than ever, imperative, we are excited for her recent LVMH Prize nomination. Below, the designer chats with Opening Ceremony fashion director Carol Song about her inspirations, process, and vision for the future.

    Shop all Wales Bonner here




    CAROL SONG: How did your brand come to life?
    GRACE BONNER: After graduating from Central Saint Martins, Lulu Kennedy got in touch and I decided to work on my first collection at LCM.
    As a designer, what skill/trait do you feel sets you apart? I guess a lot of my ideas are inspirations that come from outside of fashion.

    Were your skills self taught? I studied at Central Saint Martins.
    What does the LVMH finalist nomination mean to you? It is exciting to get that kind of recognition and exposure. It has been great meeting the other designers and panellists and learning from those around me

    We first met in Paris during Men's Fashion Week for your ebonics FW15 collection. In the beginning what was your focus? Has that changed at all throughout the transitions? Were there any unexpected challenges?
    Perhaps initially I had quite a romantic approach. Through working with stores like Opening Ceremony I have learnt how to develop the collection further and provide more of a range.

    Since culture is such a big part of Opening Ceremony’s DNA, I want to hear about some of the things that you love. Tell us your favorite: Snack? Movie? Band? Play? Song?

    These are all so hard! Film: Looking for Langston, one of them is Any Ole Way by Otis Redding. I love anythi

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    As part of the Advanced Style book signing event launching at our LA store on May 7 between 4 and 7 p.m., OC correspondent Jenny Le sat down with author Ari Seth Cohen and his muse Valerie Von Sobel. Exploring the vitality and vivaciousness his over-60 set of glamorous doyenne’s, Cohen revels about his inspiration and muses most notably Sobel. Read about how mutual friend Dita Von Teese sealed the creative destiny of these two arbiters of style.

    Interested in meeting Ari and Val in the company of free champagne and great clothes? RSVP to purplela@openingceremony.us to attend the Advanced Style book signing Saturday, May 7th from 4-7pm PST at our Los Angeles store location.


    I was lucky enough to have gotten a beautiful invitation to come over to Valerie's home a few months ago for an intimate dinner for her birthday. We had a fun surprise visit from Ari that night as well resulting in a whimsical evening filled with storytelling, laughter, hanging artwork, champagne, tea, and had plenty of dessert! I gave Valerie two photographic works for her birthday and she instantly grabbed a hammer and had us hang them on her wall! Clearly Val knows what she likes and where it fits in her life.

    JENNY LE: Tell us how Advanced Style began?
    ARI SETH COHEN: I began this project out of the love of my grandmother Bluma. She was my best friend and always encouraged my personal expression and creativity. As a child, I couldn't wait to get old to be as cool and wise as my her. I developed a deep affinity for older people and made my first book of "fancy lady" drawings at 8 years old.

    My grandma studied at Columbia University and always told me that if I wanted to be creative I should move to New York. When she passed away, I moved to the city in search of something that would fill the profound sense of loss I was feeling. Upon hitting the streets of New York, I began noticing so many incredibly well dressed, active, and vital older people. I started to photograph and interview them which eventually turned into a blog. I wanted to show a side of aging that I felt was totally ignored by fashion and lifestyle media. How did you two meet? Ari what inspired you about someone? VALERIE VON SOBEL: Dita Von Teese sent a photo of me to Ari...she is such a tease... ARI SETH COHEN: About four years ago, Dita Von Teese had sent me a picture that her friend took of Valerie in a store. Ever since then, I have kept Valerie in my Rolodex of dream subjects. When I moved to Los Angeles in July, Valerie was the first person I looked up.

    Ari, What do you look for in a muse? What inspires you about someone?
    ASC: Their spirit most of all, but incredible style doesn't hurt either. I look for individuality, creative expression, and vitality. I feel like each person I stop on the street has some kind of star quality that attracts me to them.

    Valerie, you captivate a room everywhere you go...what is your trick?
    VVS: Genuine interest and listening to the person I am talking to ... No peeking over her shoulder for a better opportunity ... That is why I am thoughtful with who I engage with … being interestingly dressed doesn't hurt … it speaks of you before you open your mouth, and those who think that clothes are inconsequential or frivolous don't even talk to you … they miss out by not looking beyond the facade. Whatever that is....

    There seems to be a playfulness between the two of you that kind of reminds me of Harold and Maude...would you agree?
    VVS: WE DEFINITELY BANTER AFFECTIONATELY, without an edge. Ari is around the age my son Andre would have been had he lived, and I couldn't have asked that he would have been kinder, smarter, or more caring. We tease and laugh a lot.
    ASC: I do

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    There’s a certain lack of creativity when it comes to your beach essentials. Headed to the beach? Swimsuit, tee, denim shorts, an easy pair of slides—check. You’re done, right? Usually. Maybe we’ve watched one too many episodes of Baywatch (or yes.. The OC) because beach attire tends to be the one area of our wardrobe where we never evolve. Change though, doesn’t translate to difficult, or to put it simply, overthinking. Because the thing is, California’s unpredictable weather sometimes has an entirely different plan than ours. Donning a blush-toned Ryan Roche knit bodysuit and pant set may be sometimes more fitting than just slipping on your basic bikini (seriously).

    Which got us thinking, would Baywatch’s jogging scenes have been nearly as sexy in neutral knits and white linens? Could it compare to ‘90’s bombshell Pamela Anderson running in slow motion in a thigh-high red one piece? Our answer is yes. And while the average Joe—or rather, bro— might not openly agree, no one can deny the beauty of a woman without makeup wearing easy-yet-stylish basics on the beach. Diaphanous sheer skirts, breezy culottes, and sinuous cut-outs lend a refined lens into sultry beach silhouettes. A milky landscape of icy blues, limestone, and pewter bring more to the eye than just your run-of-the-mill spray tanned contouring and a punch-drunk palette of acid teals and shocking pinks.

    So the next time you head to the beach, don’t over complicate or over saturate it… but you know, try something new. For a little more inspiration, scroll through our photo-journal above.
    Corrie wears Nehera Salma Wrap Skirt in Off-White, Nehera Jojo Reversible Poncho in Off-White, and Acne Studios Odet Buckle Slip-On in Black. Photography by Rasmus Jensen; Styling by Erika Flynn; Production by Carly Aimi; Hair by Rebekah Lesser; Makeup by Melissa Murdick; Talent is Corrie @ Vision Los Angeles
    Corrie wears Toga Archives Flower Embroidery Dress in Beige, Ward Whillas Faye Swimsuit Bottom in Rust/Burgundy, and Opening Ceremony Alixx Suede Criss-Cross Slides in Black. On right Corrie Wears Acne Studios Gauguin Denim Shirt in Light Vintage.
    On left Corrie wears Jacquemus La Blouse En Lin in White, Jacquemus

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  • 05/03/16--21:00: If OC Had A Merch Table
  • Here’s the thing, we love a good merch table. Nothing makes us happier than that vintage Sonic Youth concert tee we scored that’s now perfectly worn in or apparel from a random bar we stumbled upon in some obscure town. The challenge is getting the right merch takes work. So we reached out to some of our favorite brands and artists to curate our very own T-SHOP filled with styles exclusively sold at Opening Ceremony.

    Although we may not have that In Utero Nirvana Word Tour T-shirt from 1994, we’ve culled some of our heavy hitters from the season, just for you. From Vivienne Westwood World’s End @ OC photo-print boob shirt to Andrew Kuo’s classic High Hater tee, take a gander at our curated array of tees, sweatshirts, and hoodies. Hate Trump? Great, we’ve got your issue covered. Love weed, cowboys, fonts that mess with your head, or Sinead O'Connor throwbacks? That’s there too. Shlomo and Ryan Hemsworth fans, check out their DJ collective/T-shirt line WEDIDIT, featuring tees and hoodies from their Late Winter 2016 collection.

    Sure, graphic, photo, and digital-print tees may seem like a dime a dozen these days, but consider this your one-stop-shop for something a little more collectable and a little less covetable.

    So hit up the OC-T-shop… Because on is never enough.Shop All Tees from the OC T-SHOP here. Photography by Isabel Asha Penzlien 

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  • 05/04/16--21:00: Prismatical Sabbatical
  • Go on a mini-hiatus to Mexico and indulge in a bounty of lush colors with our latest editorial, En Mexico. Inspired by the rich flora of the country and the cultural vibrancy of Cinco de Mayo, explore our PLEATS PLEASE ISSEY MIYAKE Exclusively for Opening Ceremony collection. Bars of shocking pink and lemon yellow come to life on striped dresses and pants. A flurry of plants and flowers vibrate against a cascade of crisp white pleats on ever-expansive skirts and tank tops. From the winding alleyways to the verdant landscapes, lose yourself in the rich scenery shot by Annabel Mehran.

    View the full En Mexico editorial here

    Shop all PLEATS PLEASE ISSEY MIYAKE Exclusively for Opening Ceremony here

    PLEATS PLEASE ISSEY MIYAKE Exclusively for Opening Ceremony A-Line Skirt in Vivid, Marques'Almeida Cap-Sleeve Crop Top
    in White, and Mansur Gavriel Mid-Heel Suede Mules in Blush. View the full En Mexico editorial here

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    It wouldn’t be a proper Year Of China without talking about the incredibly important topic of food. You know, that thing that is not only essential to human existence, but has deep cultural and spiritual meanings in almost every society. And no, we’re not talking about General Tso’s chicken—though we may at some point… So don’t hold us too accountable. For this series we mean home cookin’... authentic Chinese recipes, kitchen secrets from a pro, and delve into each dish's societal value. To do this, we enlisted Wendy Leon, a 70-year-old China-native and a mother of three. Wendy’s not just any mama though, she’s the mother of Opening Ceremony Co-founder Humberto Leon which means she knows a thing to two about raising a good (creative) seed.

    When Wendy is in the kitchen she means business, whipping up dishes that seemingly would take forever in what feels like minutes. But don’t be discouraged, with these tips and recipes we’re confident that you can too. And with Mother’s Day right around the corner, we thought we’d share some maternal instincts. For our first installment of Cooking with Wendy, our resident chef shares Ginger Rice, a dish she says new moms should eat… Every. Single. Day.

    Why ginger? Traditional Chinese medicine source the depletion of blood and qi (roughly translated as one’s “vital energy”) to many postpartum issues, including depression. Ginger is so amazing for new moms, Wendy even recommends washing your hair with water that has been soaked in its peels. Another major medicinal property of ginger, is that it warms the body and increases blood circulation. Which is why Wendy tells all new moms to stay away from anything cold. Ice water, wet hair, cold drinks… you name it. Also, watch out for soy, it has a tendency to dry up breast milk.

    So here it goes, the ginger recipe new mama’s can’t get enough of… And the best part? After tasting this dish, having too much won’t ever be a problem.


    Ginger Rice

    Ingredients (Just like cooking should be, measurements aren’t exact and are meant to be played around with based on serving size etc.)
    Fresh Ginger (about half, new moms should add even more!)
    Scallions (¼ of a bundle)
    3 Eggs Salt to taste
    Rice
    Oil (any kind, Wendy uses organic sunflower oil)

    Directions
    Steam rice a couple hours before cooking so it has plenty of time to cool down (You can also prepare it beforehand and microwave for a couple minutes to prevent from hardening, just make sure it cools)
    Peel, wash, and chop half of ginger
    Slice the scallions
    Beat 3 eggs and add a dash of salt
    Heat oil in pot
    Add ginger first, saute until light golden
    Add rice to the pan (make sure rice isn’t too wet)
    Cook rice until everything is evenly mixed, then add salt to taste Garnish with scallions
    Enjoy!Wendy wears the Opening Ceremony Embroidered Back Cardigan in black and Opening Ceremony Delta Handkerchief Short-Sleeve Dress in black. Photos by Jonathan Baskin; Styling assistance by Zoey Radford

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    Breast pumps, nipple cream, and heels? You might remember from last year’s Mother’s Day post, then pregnant Bettina Chin (OC’s in-house legal counsel and manager of special projects) asked Shirley Yung (VP of Product & Development) some questions about what to really expect when you’re expecting. Well, it’s been approximately a year later and let’s just say a lot has changed… Bettina gave birth to a beautiful, healthy baby boy named Beckett and shortly after, Adrienne Pratt (a store manager at OCNY) also had a little boy, Isa. In honor of Mother’s Day this year, we decided to do a part two. This time around, veteran moms Shirley and OC’s co-founder Carol Lim sit down to interview Bettina and Adrienne on what it’s like being a new (somehow still well-dressed) mom.

    Below read the conversation between OC’s new and older-ish mama’s.

    CAROL LIM: I’m curious to know, what was your reaction the instant you found out you were pregnant?

    BETTINA CHIN: [One of our coworkers] asked me to grab lunch with her one day, but for some reason when it was time to go, I was like, I have to go to Duane Reade. I don’t know what it was, but I kind of knew that something was amiss. So I bought every pregnancy test I could possibly find, went into the bathroom, did the thing, and then Melanie (OC’s HR Director) walks in and was like, “What are you doing?” And I was like, “I can’t read this, is there a stripe on it?”

    ADRIENNE PRATT: I found out I was pregnant at work too!

    BC: So basically, I was with Melanie at the time and we were sitting there trying to decipher whether it was the right line or something like that. After that, I called Dan and was like, it looks like we’re starting our family a little bit sooner than we expected. No, I called my sister and then she asked everybody, do you think this means she’s pregnant, and everybody was like, yeah. And then I called Dan and that was that. But it was only a week and a half into the pregnancy, so it was really early for me. But I kind of just knew.

    CL: At what point did it sink in that you were actually pregnant? When you realized it was happening, did you change your routine?

    AP: I mean, I put down the beer haha. No, I think I emotionally processed it and had already accepted it. I knew I had to do things differently, but I felt really at peace. Surprisingly, I wasn’t panicked at all, which is unlike any other big news I get.

    BC: I think for me, I had to change certain habits like caffeine. I was like a four-cups-a-day kind of girl. You know how when you’re pregnant and you’re trying to wrap your head around the largeness of it, you end up just picking one small thing to focus on and that becomes the large thing. For me, it was changing the amount of coffee I drank. For some reason I was really upset about that.

    AP: See, I still drank coffee. I just had one cup a day, not more than that and I was good. Obviously I had to stop certain things and felt really good at being like, I need to eat better. Maybe this is what I needed to get over that hump of eating better, because I ate like crap.

    SHIRLEY YUNG: The hardest challenge for me was being able to balance having a baby and going back to work. Have you been able to get a routine down where you feel comfortable at work? The first time I came back to work was obviously really sad. I really wanted to come back to work but I was torn.

    AP: I wanted to go back to work, I like working. But I think the biggest challenge for me was, there wasn’t an in between. I went from being with him ever

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  • 05/05/16--21:00: Missed the Fiesta?
  • Tequila? Check. Mariachi Band? Check. Party pleats (we’ll explain later)? Double check.

    In honor of our exclusive collection with PLEATS PLEASE ISSEY MIYAKE we decided to celebrate our way—full force, with no glass left unpoured and not a moment of awkward silence. Hosted at OCLA, a bounty of boozy refreshments were served along with musical performances by Mariachi Arcoiris de Los Angeles, the world’s first ever LGBTQ mariachi band, Jubilee, and MA NGUZU. With performances in the parking lot and a whirlwind of those iconic Issey Miyake pleats swinging in the air, this spring fiesta was more than just a launch party. But why read about it when you can see it for yourself? Take a peek at some highlights from our slideshow above.
    The Sunland Dancers (Photography by Owen Kolasinski for BFA, Jeremy Renault, and IAMSOUND)
    James Flemons
    Kat Collings, Michelle Plantan
    OC’s Jaye and Nathaniel, Eli, guest
    Jubilee
    OC’s Jenny, Will Castelli, Valerie Von Sobel 
    Jimmy Giannopoulos
    Thank you to our sponsors! Chandon, Tiger Beer, Yola Mezcal, IAMSOUND

    Jahleel Weaver
    Melyssa Lauren, Krystian Lorenzana

    OC’s Jesse
    Samantha Urbani
    Elizabeth Hilfiger

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    Ari Seth Cohen began photographing his more stylish and “seasoned” subjects when he came to New York City after the loss of his beloved grandmother and self-proclaimed best friend, Bluma. Through Bluma and Ari’s unique healing process, the rest of us were given an entirely new form of inspiration; exploring the lives and closets, of those much older and wiser. Eight years later, the stars of Ari’s second book, Advanced Style: Older And Wiser, graced copies with heartfelt wishes and words of wisdom for fans and rare fashion birds alike at our exclusive OCLA book signing this past Saturday night.

    Among those signing copies were “Cover Girl” as she likes to refer to herself when signing to gifted recipients of the book, Valerie Von Sobel. Valerie has become not only a daily fashion inspiration to the OC family, but also a lover of our LA storefront in such a way we can only believe we’ve got to be doing something right. Not to mention, herself and OCLA’s den mother in her own right, Jenny Le’s souls had to have crossed paths in another lifetime. Joy Venturini Bianchi arrived dripping in beaded head-to-toe Tom Ford, making 77 look better than 27 on any given day. Among the other excited guests were Advanced Style cameo stars Sarah Jane Adams, looking like the chicest Pippi Longstocking ever, Colleen Heidemann in a hat worthy of something between the Kentucky Derby and a formal gathering at the Capitol in The Hunger Games, and 93-year-old (no, not retired) dancer Phyllis Sues adorned in grey feathers, amongst many others.

    In a room full of arguably the world’s most stylish women, Valerie Von Sobel’s original artwork consisting of bird carcasses that may have past lives as “a little bit of a hooker” and men who truly encompass the term “swagger,” it becomes truly evident that the idea of youthfulness transcends a number; 81 years deems absolutely no less fabulous than 21 years. The only difference? Age has a lot more to say, and we better start listening.
    Photography by Jerald Johnson and Tyler Adams
    OC’s Jenny, Joy Venturini Bianchi, Ari Seth Cohen, Valerie Von Sobel
    Charlie Brianna
    Colleen Heidermann
    Tyler Adams
    Sarah Jane Adams

    Joy Venturini Bianchi, Valerie Von Sobel
    Roberta Haze
    Joy Venturini Bianchi

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    Blending his love for sportswear and streetwear with a meticulous Savile Row sensibility, get to know clothsurgeon’s founder and creative director Rav Singh-Matharu. Incorporating luxurious fabrics with digitally applied prints, Matharu’s bespoke designs yield an overall clean-lined construction with his latest “Seasonless” collection. Also well-known for launching the “Reconstruction Project,” Matharu takes classic Nike pieces such as fleece sweatpants and sweatshirts to recreate clothsurgeon’s staple silhouettes like biker jackets, suiting, and bomber jackets. From his Back to the Future print shorts to a texturally alluring speckled wool cashmere two-piece suit, learn a little more about this off-kilter tailoring savant.

    Shop clothsurgeon at Opening Ceremony stores (not available online)



    Name: Rav Singh-Matharu
    Hometown: Leeds, now London
    Astrological sign: Virgo
    Hidden Talent: Ex-professional footballer (and for those of you who don’t know better, yes—that means soccer player)
    What was your style like in high school? Experimental!
    What's your current Spring/Summer 2016 collection inspiration? A blend of 1930s vintage Americana, Japanese culture, and re-purposing Nike pieces to fit a new aesthetic.
    Do you have a design muse? 1930s coal miners
    Coolest place to visit where you currently reside: London, Spitalfields Market especially on Thursdays, Vintage Day.
    If you were to do another job besides designing, what would it be? Chef!
    What's your go-to karaoke song? Oasis, “Wonderwall”
    What’s one phrase that defines you? Obsessive Pursuit of Product Perfection
    Click through the slideshow to see more behind-the-scenes photos of designer Rav Singh-Matharu in action. (Please note all clothsurgeon products are available in Opening Ceremony stores only).

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    With summer soon approaching, get ready to polish up that pedi and bare your soles. Footwear can be a bit of a sticky situation–on one hand you want something breezy, lightweight and thoughtlessly versatile, but good design is key, and falling into a K-hole of flip-flops from every Crayola box color spectrum just won’t do. Your feet deserve a treat, and easy flats fit for every occasion are a hard find, but once found, they last forever. To keep it simple this season, here’s your blueprint for your footprint(s):


    The Playa Sandals: Forgo the Flip-Flop
    Adding more support (plus way more hygienic) and none of that clickety sound flip-flops make, the Playa Sandals make for an all-occasion outdoor/indoor investment. For the feet introverts out there, these sandals add enough coverage and contouring to last you throughout any beach bonfire or 12 + hours of pounding the pavement. Ever had a thong strap break, leaving you with just a foam-based sole and floppy straps? Yeah, that won’t happen.

    The Allia & Jourdena Leather Slides: Putting the Fuss-Free Back into Pool Shoes
    Bask your feet in a cozy, slightly sunken footbed by our pool sides. Leisurely yet not without any baring, you’ll think you’re at a Palm Springs cabana even if you’re just stuck on the L train…Or as of recent news, no train.

    The Iggie & Almma Sneakers: Your Future Perfect Footwear
    Swerving lines, sleek cut-outs, and a stark monochromatic palette render these sneakers are ultramodern, yet understated enough to wear practically anywhere. Dressed down, dressed up or undressed, the Iggy and Almma runner add a little boost without all the hype.On left model wears J.W. Anderson Ottoman Stripe top, J.W. Anderson Ottoman Stripe Skirt in Black, Opening Ceremony Lele Shiny Calf Mini Bag in White, and Opening Ceremony Playa Sandals in Black/Cobalt/Mohagan. On right model wears Wales Bonner Reed Denim Culottes in Indigo, Phlemuns Denim Tied Top, Kenzo Logo Denim Shoulder Bag in Bleu France, and Opening Ceremony Playa Sandals in Black. (All items not linked available in Opening Ceremony stores only). Photography by Isabel Asha Penzlien; Styling by Dominick Myles Barcelona.Model wears Opening Ceremony Silk Embroidered Bonsai Top in Black, Mo&CO Wide-Leg Pants in Oil Yellow

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    Undercover’s Jun Takahashi recently posted on Ring of Colour, a Japanese blog-like digital media platform, about a flyer announcing the opening of his very first store NOWHERE. “Found something again that brought back some fond memories. I think it’s a fax announcing the opening of NOWHERE on April 1st, 1993” writes Takahashi. That was 23 years ago. Undercover has come a long way, from selling graphic T-shirts at a small store in Harajuku to becoming one of the most cutting-edge streetwear brands of today. As the brand turns 25 this year, Takahashi commemorates the milestone with a Spring/Summer 2016 collection titled “The Greatest Hits,” bringing back some of his favorite archival pieces from his last 13 collections.

    Born in 1969 in a small town called Kiryu, a part of Gunma prefecture in Japan, Takahashi grew up with a strong interest in punk rock, immersing himself in the culture from a young age. Without a clear sense of what he wanted to do, in 1988, a young Takahashi enrolled in Tokyo’s Bunka Fashion College where he also played in a punk rock band called the Tokyo Sex Pistols. A defining moment came when he attended a Comme des Garçons show that eventually steered him towards the world of fashion. “I was so impressed. It convinced me to think of fashion design as being completely free in creative expression,” says Takahashi in a Business of Fashion interview. It’s this same idea of creating something not merely for money, but for the sake of design that has driven his success over the years.

    Scrolling through Undercover’s Spring/Summer 2016 lookbook is a journey through Takahashi’s evolution. From his famed Spring/Summer 2003 “Scab” collection where garments are haphazardly constructed from torn and shredded fabric to Spring/Summer 2013’s “Collage,” featuring quirky patches on cardigans and jackets—we see the designer refine his voice, an interpretation of his often times dark and unsettling inner world.

    Second chances don’t come often, so if you missed out on any of Undercover’s past collections, now is the time to snag your favorite items… Because odds are, there won’t be a third.

    Shop all Spring/Summer 2016 Undercover hereShop all Undercover here. (Select styles not featured are available in stores). Then click through the slideshow to see more images from the brands Spring/Summer ’16 lookbook.

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    Video and Animation made by Robert Ek

    The expansive power of my PLEATS PLEASE ISSEY MIYAKE pants were truly put to the test today on my walk to work. Literally, the cool breeze blew them wider than I thought was possible, causing me to question the usually appreciative ventilation they provide—It’s May 16th and these “did I dress warm enough?” thoughts should not be running through my head.

    Luckily, summer is coming and just in case the weather isn’t putting you in the mindset, Jubilee’s second rump-shakin’ compilation will. This Wednesday, May 18th we will be anniversarying Magic City 2 for Opening Ceremony, a 12 track drop right here on the blog, with a free download. Yes that’s right, for free. This’ll give you a full 24 hours to practice shakin’ that ass in the privacy of your own home before doing so amongst the presence of Jessica Gentile (aka Jubilee) on Output’s roof this coming Thursday. And yes, this party is also free, get the details and RSVP here.

    But since it’s cold AF right now, we thought we’d leave you with a summer (dancing) bod teaser. Ahead of Magic City 2’s full 12-track release, watch, listen, or download Latvia born producer/DJ Mess Kid’s “Body Kit” track.

       


     

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    As part of our 2016: Year of China focus, we’ll be rolling out a special edition of our New To OC series to introduce some of the emerging Chinese designers we’re proud to carry this year.

    Ximon Lee has racked up quite an impressive list of achievements within the past few years. In 2015, just shy of graduating Parsons School of Design with a BFA in Fashion Design, Lee became the first US designer and the first menswear designer in the world to win the H&M Design Award. He has presented with VFiles at NYFW and also participated in the acclaimed LVMH Prize awards. The clothing responsible for all these accomplishments? Highly architectural, exaggerated silhouettes that come in a gradient of light to deep ocean blues. And not to mention the cheeky phrases splayed across these streetwear-inspired garments, “To avoid danger of suffocation, keep this plastic bag away from children.” Below we get a glimpse into the designer’s inspirations for Spring/Summer 2016 and some of his favorite things.

    Shop all XIMONLEE here



    Name: Ximon Lee 
    Astrological sign: Capricorn
    Do you have a design muse? My loved one 
    What's your current Spring/Summer 2016 collection inspiration? "Enjoy every sandwich"
    Coolest place to visit in China: Xiamen
    Favorite traditional Chinese food dish? Hot Pot 
    What makes you feel most at home where you live now? Xi’an Famous Foods
    What Western pop culture topic was popular where you grew up? Disco and Bubble Gum 

     Click through the slideshow to see all products from XIMONLEEEnjoy Cotton Shirt in White.Warning Sign Sweater in Ingido/WhiteWoven Layer Knit Tee in White/Navy.Long Pinstriped Zipper Tee in Dark Navy/Copper Pin.Enjoy Knite Vest in Indigo/White.Pleated Copper Pinstriped Shorts in

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