Archive for the ‘Design’ Category

Cassette Playa Autumn / Winter 2010 Digital Presentation London Fashion Week

Carri Munden is known for her wonderfully quirky personality and her love for digital and neon-inspired garments and accessories. Her recent collaborations with Nike and Jim Henson’s fraggle rock brand earned her a great deal of accolades in 2009 in the streetwear community including the Crockstar Streetwear Designer of the Year. There was a good deal of anticipation for her London Fashion Week unveiling of the Auntumn Winter 2010 – 2011 collection entitled “Neuromance” with accessories (and footwear) provided by Nike Sportswear. The presentation was a fashion-first and incorporated live augmented reality.

Intro to Cassette Playa 2010 London Presentation

The presentation was a true break from the “traditional runway” format of unveiling a collection. Three models (two male, one female) entered the room to some bass-heavy beats and took their places in front of a gigantic screen. One by one they disappeared around to the back side of screen and removed articles of clothing revealing layers from the new collection beneath (certainly an internet inspired way to unveil a collection).

Cassette Playa Autumn Winter 2010 London

The presentation also diverged from your run-of-the-mill youtube stop-motion video where the model removes a number of layers of teeshirts: rather than a simple pre-recorded stop motion video, Carri the creative included augmented reality 3-D elements for each model and they came to life as if by some secret power hidden within small square illustrations on the bottom-layer t-shirts. The men’s digital elements appeared to be a cross between knights in shining armour and characters from the Mortal Kombat series. Meanwhile, the one female model was wearing a princess / mortal kombat looking headpiece, though her digital 3-D element looked more like a sexed-up alien from Species.

Cassette Playa Digital Presentation London Fashion Week

The square on these white tee’s would glow and flash green as if it were a powerful stone on a treasure troll, before unleashing the augmented reality elements. The effect was breathtaking and the accompanying music was perfect.

There were surprisingly fewer people on hand to experience the new collection than might have been expected for one of the big names in British fashion, but there was a good amount of media coverage (two video cameras and several photographers).

The collection itself offered more of the Cassette Playa staples – silk printed oversized tee’s, neon leggings and arm warmers, dark jackets and vests with neon accents, and simplistic but bad ass designs on the base-layer tees. The shoes ranged from Alpinestar’s Astar motocross boots, to Nike T-90 II football boots.

Carri Munden at London Fashion Week Digital Presentation

It seems as though some of the design and attention to the collection was lost in the complete fascination with the augmented reality presentation. It is unlikely that the show will lead to many buyers in and of itself, but it certainly should create some buzz online and given the label’s strong following, I sincerely doubt whether this will be an issue.

Carri is off to a strong start and may well be on her way to another stand-out season.

For more fashion commentary and news follow Crockstar on Twitter.

Belle Sauvage – Autumn / Winter 2010 – London Fashion Week

Unfortunately, this presentation got off to a bit of a rough start. The event seemed quite oversubscribed with people standing atop tip-toes and craning their necks and cameras in an attempt to catch a glimpse of the collection.

A wide range of people stood anxiously in the queue awaiting entry to the event which started about 30 minutes late. Tall and attractive young people dressed foolishly and acting even more foolishly stood loudly in front of the interactive i-phone wall dedicated to the memory of Alexander McQueen, serving as a painful reminder of what the UK fashion industry has lost and what it’s future looks like (poorly behaved children).

Alexander McQueen Tribute

Once inside the event, the excitement was palpable. The white runway was set up standard – running down the middle of the several hundred in the audience. The music was reminiscent of a soundtrack to a horror film about zombies or aliens and fit the scene quite well. The models were quite alien looking themselves with massive hair slicked back, and some of whom walking with posture clearly exposing shoulder blades. The effect was quite interesting creating some bizarre balance between beauty and horror.

The clothing was largely futuristic featuring geometric shapes and sharp lines. As seemed to be the case in many of the collections we saw this weekend, leather was big. The leather accents were not as prevalent (though clearly popped up on a pair of trousers amongst other places), but the full-out leather tops and dresses were out. The overall feeling was like some sort of futuristic S & M party with heavy construction going on in the background.

Belle Sauvage A/W 2010

The designers’ thoughts on what was “on” for this year (“technology and sciences”) showed through clearly in the event and the tailoring was immaculate. There did not seem to be many items that I could see selling in large quantities on the high street, there were a few colourful items that you could imagine doing quite well.

Belle Sauvage A/W 2010

All told, the show seemed to be more of a concept collection and the industrial and sciences inspired  collection clearly achieved it’s aim. The only thing that remains to be seen is whether it achieves any retail success.

*Video will be embedded once made available from On / Off.

For more fashion commentary please feel free to follow Crockstar on Twitter.

Cassette Playa Autumn / Winter 2010 – London Fashion Week Digital Presentation

 

Cassette Playa A/W 2010

More on this later… pretty sick though. First augmented reality presentation in the history of fashion. Leave it to Carri Munden a.k.a. Cassette Playa. Epic.

London Fashion Week A/W Review (Part I)

After finishing the morning rounds it is time for a quick check in on what there is to see and what is grabbing the most attention. As a first note on trending this year, leather accents are everywhere. While it seemed like this was a big trend in menswear last year it has taken root with the ladies as well. Women’s trousers with cotton fronts and leather backs (a bit bizarre but quite nice).

Maria Francesca Pepe

Maria Francesca Pepe Presentation

Another plus- people definitely seem to be pushing the ethical angle wherever possible. We all know how bad greenwashing can be for industry and it will be no better for fashion, but the fact that so many brands are trying to market themselves as ethical at least shows there is demand for the ethical clothing market (a big plus for me and for fashion in general).

Newgen is where it’s at. The exhibition portion of the show features a number of high end designers and some middle of the table “not quite there yet” brands. But the newgen section is unbelievable and the future is looking very bright for British fashion. This initiative by the British Fashion Council was a great idea and is paying huge dividends. Favorites from the newgen section include: Mary Katranztzou, KTZ, Maria Francesca Pepe, Craig Lawrence and Christopher Raeburn.

Raeburn is a class guy to talk to and in his third season he is already being featured at Liberty’s (among others). His recycled military wear is absolutely sick. He has taken some normal shapes and turned them on their head by using bright transclucent recycled parachutes and chopped up and remixed felt and leather from 50’s motorcycle jackets. Raeburn was nothing short of a gentleman and quite encouraging to me as a young part-time designer.

Comfort Station, gorgeous jewelery led by an absolute sweetheart of a designer Amy Anderson, was another highlight of the show. Her jewelry is all made in London (right over on Brick Lane) and this season was inspired by “the impossible”. In addition to great gold and wood work, she has done some pretty bad ass stuff with laser cutting and etching as well. Look out for an interview either here or on an upcoming ethical fashion blog I’ll be guest posting for (more on that later).

I will be sure to throw up some more images once I can get my hands on some high-res versions and will offer a fuller outlook on some of these brands as well.

Next stop(s): The Designer Showcase, On/Off and the Belle Sauvage runway.

Hyperminimalism

This is kind of a cool idea that I stumbled across the other day while browsing the wonderweb. I’m not entirely sure it is for me (and I’m definitely not going to be using it all the time so fear not) but it is sort of a more educated and engaging way of Twitter-speak. If you haven’t got much time to write about  something or have a habbit of being overly verbose (like myself) this is the ticket.

Hyperminimalism might be looked at in the fashion world as the “plain white tee” look but with a flair. I supposed it would be more like making a simple (but beautiful) dress out of plain white cotton. Or by wearing nothing but a towel wrapped around you to your next party (advice from Vivienne Westwood I picked up reading Stylist on the tube this morning).

An example of hyperminimalism (as I understood it):

“I have a tattoo. You know where.”

The idea is to leave a lot of blanks for the reader to fill in but also to create a level of interest.

“Sometimes shorter really is better.”

While these are not ideas that you would want to see taken out of context, they are quite fun. For more examples of hyperminimalism by someone who actually knows what they are talking about check out the UnpublishedGuy’s blog.

Taylor Stitch Exclusive Interview (Part II)

Hey all, today we will get right back to our conversation with Mike Maher of Taylor Stitch who are making headway in the fashion world and making some bad-ass and well-tailored clothing out of San Francisco. In case you missed the first part of the interview check it out.

Taylor Stitch Denim

Who are some of the people you admire in the realm of fashion or online shopping?

I like people that create great brands specifically. I have had the pleasure of working with Pierrepont Hicks which is a husband and wife team from Minnesota that makes great ties and bow ties out of old dead stock fabrics. I also admire Nigel Cabourn as a designer for his passion for creating incredible product that is meant to be passed onto your grandkids.

I know you set out to try to make a place where men could buy quality tailored shirts without having to go into the shop to get them… tell me a bit about how you got things started, what some of the hiccups towards the beginning are, and what else you might do in the future to make sure your site remains a place where men can go to get nice shirts.

We basically started with the idea of making tailoring less pretentious. A lot of guys can’t afford to go in and buy 5 tailored shirts at $150 a pop. being online is great and it is phenomenal for getting your word out there but it is also hard to get people to go measure themselves. Most of our shirt sales have come from people directly interacting with us at pop up markets or mini shows or contacting us directly to have a home or office fitting done.

We are definitely focused on our manufacturing and improving those relationships whenever possible. Taylor Stitch is going to really take a step back and focus on our shirts. We have another side project going called the Durable Goods Concern that just put a 3 day pop up market together in San Francisco that will probably end up taking over the representing of other brands so we can focus on the shirts with TS.

What are your big goals for 2010? You had a pretty successful 2009, what would you like to improve upon this year?

Big things are to develop the following of both TS and the DGC. We are going to put one very limited run highly engineered piece out for the DGC come summer time. Once we are happy with our fits for off the rack shirts and have them all dialed in we are going to start doing short runs of shirts under the TS label too and getting the word out a little bit better. Letting people come into contact with our product in a little easier of a way than custom.

I take a lot of inspiration just from watching people and reading too many blogs. Where do you go to get style tips?

I read blogs, watch old movies, try and look at old pictures. I think there is a lot to say about what men used to dress like and how they used to act that is finally coming full circle. How to be a gentleman and how to be capable of everyday things like cutting wood and cooking dinner. It’s rather sad how many people lack these simple abilities. That being said I think there needs to be technology mixed in with all of that. I love to read blogs like the selvedge yard or I look at port authority or the impossible cool. Those sort of classic things get me excited. Then I just talk to people and look for inspiration that way. I’ve had the chance to meet people that geek out over details on things and love to talk about it which is so cool to see!

What was it that made you decide to do this as a career rather than a hobby?

I have nothing to lose but a little money. I figured why not give it a shot and see what happens.

Taylor Stitch Navigation

If you could get your clothes to one person who would it be and why?

I am pretty happy with putting it on normal guys right now that are doing cool things. Our local furniture producers, wine makers, shop owners. They are the ones that really create the community that I like and care where things are coming from.

All right, fair enough, but who is the most likely celebrity or internet personality you might catch rocking your duds?

Fine. Steve McQueen or Paul Newman.

As the line is all about being true to yourself: I’ve got to self plug while I’ve got a chance… what does it mean to you to be a ‘Crockstar’?

It is all about producing great product at fairly reasonable prices that will last. I also really enjoy knowing the people that made the clothes for me. It is a much more real story than “Made in China…”

In 2009 bomber jackets were big, elbow pads came back on tweed jackets and skinny jeans took over the world. What’s going to be the “big item” this next year in your opinion?

I’m hoping men just keep pushing themselves towards dressing like a grown up in things that fit. Custom fitted shirts are a great start but there is so much more to that. People need to first understand fit before they understand style because you could be wearing the coolest piece in the world but if it doesn’t fit you just look foolish.

That’ll do it for us, check back soon and for the latest and greates be sure to follow Crockstar and to follow Taylor Stitch on Twitter.

Rest in Peace Alexander McQueen – A Terrible Start to London Fashion Week

 Rest in Peace Alexander McQueen

McQueen’s Website Has Been Taken Down for the Time Being

Today the United Kingdom has lost one of their most promising talents. Alexander McQueen has committed suicide, it is reported by the Daily Mail. McQueen was best known for his skull designs, over-the-top color choices, and unbelievable tailoring. His cuts were unriavled, and the amount he has brought to the UK fashion scene if not the global fashion scene, will be sorely missed.

According to the report, McQueen lost his mother just days ago and was thought to be coping with the loss with a great deal of grief.

This year’s London Fashion Week is sure to be a dreadfully more somber event and McQueen was an inspiration to all young aspiring British talent.

My sincerest  condolences to his family and friends. Our hopes and prayers are with you.

A retrospective of his recent work will be posted over the next few days.

Aleksandra Korejwo – Carmen Torrero (Because Sharing is Caring)


By far one of the greatest/least appreciated forms of art you are likely ever to see. This short was made by Aleksandra Korejwo in 1996. Korejwo attended film school in Poland. Her massive list of awards can be seen at Korejwo’s Website. Korejwo’s ability to create animation using colored sand is unbeleivable and has been used in advertisments for United Airlines, though nothing compares (IMO) to the short Carmen Torrero for which I first became enamored of her work.

For anyone with a love for Spain, it is criminal not to have seen this piece of art.

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About Me

This is the new home of the Crockstar Limited blog. The blog focuses heavily on trends in fashion music and the internet. The goal is to start an ethically sourced fashion label, but in the meantime the blog will offer insight into the world of an ADD fashion-loving internet geek.