Mercedes Benz Fashion Week Australia: Alice McCall

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AliceMcCall-styleonthecouch-sydneyfashionweek-6London born, Australian designer Alice McCall founded her namesake label in 2004 following a career as a stylist, working with fashion titles such as Dazed & Confused and pop and rock icons Beyonce and Deborah Harry.  The brand reflects all of this history and development: McCall’s is a brand of feminine charm meets bohemia meets rock star cool.

It is claimed that Kate Moss helped McCall get her first break:

“While working as a stylist in London in the late 1990s, McCall began creating and selling one-off silk tops and dresses through a select few London stores. Moss snapped some up and heads turned.” – Vogue Australia

A very characterful collection for the recent Sydney Fashion Week, McCall brought us her usual eclecticism, serving us bold lip prints, sheer and mesh fabrics and frills and flounces in her 10th anniversary line.  Prints were the highlight – some styles featured galaxies-meets-Lawrence-of-Arabia-meets-vintage-pin-ups – expect Chloe Sevigny and Alexa Chung to be wearing these very soon.

“[In 2004] The Alice McCall girl was born, magnetic and glowing; pretty and in love and completely carefree. Unsurprisingly, international attention followed, and following the brand’s AW06 showcase at London Fashion Week, the collection was applauded by Vogue UK: ‘If we gave out cups at the end of Fashion Week, Alice McCall would have a hat trick: best newcomer, prettiest collection and easily the most popular in class’.”  - MBFWA

You can browse and purchase McCall at ASOS, Nasty Gal, David Jones and online via her e-boutique.

Photos: Sonny Vandevelde.

The Blue Lagoon with Kore Swim

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Blue Lagoon Iceland

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Iceland’s Blue Lagoon is a geothermal spa situated in a lava field in Grindavík on the Reykjanes Peninsula, southwestern Iceland. About 45 minutes drive from Reykjavik, I stopped off at the spa during my trip to Iceland last month.

The Blue Lagoon is man-made, fed by the water output of a nearby geothermal power plant.  Superheated water is vented from the ground near a lava flow and used to run turbines that generate electricity.  After going through the turbines, the steam and hot water passes through a heat exchanger to provide heat for a municipal water heating system.  Then the water is fed into the lagoon for people like me to bathe in – rich with minerals such as silica (reported to improve skin elasticity) and sulphur (used medicinally since ancient times, rich in keratin, which gives you strong hair, nails, and skin) – giving it a silky feel and a rich and gloopy appearance.

At an average temperature of around 38 degrees, swimming (or rather, wading) in the lagoon is a delightfully blissful experience.  I wore my new maillot from Kore Swim during my time there: an architecturally designed one-piece with high neck, cut-out back straps and sleek black gloss accents, this Minerva maillot was perfect for the spa as I wanted more coverage than I might in a swimming pool or on a beach.   Kore have a wonderful selection of one-pieces right now, and this maillot has recently been released in blush pink/black as well as white/black scale print.

Those seeking a fun spa experience should consider Iceland’s Blue Lagoon. If you are making the trip,  be warned – the scent of sulphur needs some acclimatizing to, and you are required to go through a rigorous showering process before you get into the spa itself – once those things are done then all you need to do is sit back in the warm waters and relax….

Read more about Iceland’s Blue Lagoon HERE.  For more on Kore Swim, visit their website.

Lingerie Lust: Hatsumi’s Laundry

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I recently stumbled across Hatsumi’s Laundry on instagram – a delightful and highly covetable Australian lingerie label selling a capsule collection of soft cup bras and briefs.  In an interview with Kester Black blog, designer Jemma Aickin described how she turned her hand to lingerie when she was quite simply; ‘bored’ and having trouble finding undergarments that she really loved:

“I love soft cup bras but they can be hard to come by. So one day when I had nothing better to do I started making some of my own things and it just went from there! I am basically self-taught, I have never studied, but learnt how to sew when I was young and have done a few short courses along the way. I have a patternmaker & a local manufacturer working for me now, but I still do as much as I can myself.”

As with another designer I have much love and respect for, Gabrielle of Hopeless Lingerie, who instagrams her design inspirations on a daily basis, Hatsumi’s Laundry’s tumblr is a veritable feast of Aickin’s influences, from muses such as Kate Moss to everything in monochrome (you can see why this brand is right up my street) along with inspiring aesthetics.  With collections FlowerBed Blackout and Cloud Chamber - many pieces from which are already sold out – you have designs that are delicately soft as well as chic.

Check out the entire collection over at Hatsumi’s Laundry.