Fleet Ilya Corset Belt: Still The Dark Side Of The Force

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FleetIlya-leatherbelt-4I love a mix of hard and soft textures within an outfit.  A crisp white shirt and a soft, flowing leather jacket; a fluffy cropped Angora sweater and a sharp cashmere blend A line skirt (and so on, and so forth.)  If you haven’t got the right mixture of fabrics and textures to complete this type of look, I suggest turning to your accessories to mix things up a little.

I have several Fleet Ilya pieces in my wardrobe, with this large point cut out corset belt being my newest accessory from the brand.  A wonderfully webbed show piece – reminiscent of the armour of Batman with a modern Spiderman aesthetic – it’s a very slim fitting, waist nipping style I’ve worn in many different ways.  In summer, when wearing black, navy, or entirely ‘dark’ colours is typically frowned upon (for more of my thoughts on this topic, see here) I’ll still be aligned with the dark side of the force, but I will roll out the lighter fabrics.  Here I thought the combination of the corset belt and this flowing summer dress was a great dichotomy between textures.

Wearing: Heels, Zara. Belt: Fleet Ilya.  Dress: Bought in NYC (unknown Soho boutique, if I ever find it again I will tell you!). Nude slip: Flexees.

Photos: Beth Morton Photography

The Audrey Hepburn Effect

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MillyNY-MillybyMichelleShe is one of the most enduring screen icons of the 20th Century and her style is one of the most emulated and admired in the world.  Fashion & Cinema note that; “She managed to balance simplicity, comfort and elegance to create a timeless, singularly European sophistication that came to define her persona.

As I continue my summer quest to strip my wardrobe down to the very basics of black, white and denim; the odd eye-catching print and my favourite leather pieces, I am reminded of Audrey Hepburn‘s effortless grace and the allure of her style, which arose from her subtle approach to dressing.  Also,

Unlike so many other icons of the period, Hepburn’s style was not manufactured by a studio, but was instead entirely idiosyncratic. It called upon both the understated elegance of her upbringing, and the many years of ballet that influenced her physical bearing.” – Fashion & Cinema

Following her 1954 movie Sabrina, Hepburn established a relationship with Givenchy, who was both friend and fashion designer to her. He created her costumes for that movie; the gown, the boatneck sweater, the capri pants.  If I were to ask you about Audrey Hepburn’s style however, you are perhaps most likely to recall the iconic little black dress seen through the window at Breakfast at Tiffany’s, also by Givenchy and popularized by Coco Chanel.  Riccardo Tisci, creative director of Givenchy, said of the dress:

It was 1961 and this dress is in a way very sixties. The front is severe, elegant, very clean, but at the back there is the very interesting neckline, somewhere between ethnic and Parisian; a softness that other designers in that time didn’t have.” (from Classiq.me)

Even in the early stages of downsizing I realize I have too too many little black dresses in my closet, but I don’t mind. I realize the little black dress can be different every time you put it on. I call it the Hepburn effect.

Photos: Beth Morton Photography.

Wearing: Dress by Milly NY.

The Shoulders Have It: Rodarte for Opening Ceremony

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OpeningCeremony-Rodarte-1The ‘shoulder’ tends to re-surface now and then as fashion trend.  Dropped shoulders, off the shoulder, ‘boob tube’ – I’m personally a little partial to the hint of clavicle and bare shoulders.  It reminds me of a carefree summer, the warmth of a hot beach vacation and sultry evenings in mediterranean towns.

In an interview with women about the body parts of males they most loved, the shoulder topped the list.  Well-defined, broad shoulders are adored because they are a sign of strength and masculinity.  For us women, after a day of carrying around bags and books and children, a kiss in between the shoulder blades, perhaps one of the less likely erogenous zones, is a wonderful appreciation of ourselves (and our day) and a lot of loving attention from a very small action.

This dress is a true favourite. I think all fashion blogs should showcase their favourite pieces again and again: this dress already two years old and it comes out every summer.  With just a hint of shoulder, I love the layering in this piece.  I just need the vacation plan to match it :)

Wearing: Dress, Rodarte for Opening Ceremony.  Heels: Kurt Geiger.  Photos: Beth Morton Photography. For more photos of this dress in NYC, click HERE.