Perhaps it’s the tough economic times, or perhaps it’s that fact that, in a few short days, the country that has the lowest on average IQ in the developed world (look it up, it’s 98) will be choosing the President of the free world, or perhaps everyone is still in mourning over the death of Mr Blackwell; regardless of the reason, it’s been a slow news week for fashion. We’re serious; there haven’t even been any dogs in raincoats to write about. Anyway, we thought, in support of Kevin Rudd’s exciting new Keynesian economic policies, we’d do our part to get everyone out there and spending. So, without further delay, we present a selection of cute summer products for the budget conscious.
Canvas shoes really are the ultimate in summer time practicality. They combine indie credibility with long lasting coolness (in the glass of icy water sense), and unlike your leather loafers, you can wash them after they get muddy at festivals. Unfortunately, the market on canvas in cornered by a few big name brands and the slightly malformed ones you can pick up for $8 in China town. No longer! Julius Marlow’s JM THIRTY 3’s are a fashionable new player on the canvas court. Available in a range of light, preppy colours these well-crafted shoes will help you channel your inner rich boy. They’ll let you stalk from sunshine, to club line like the sure-footed lothario you’ve always wanted to be, and at the end of the night, your feet won’t even smell that bad. Stockists: 1800 700 227.
In these dark and desolate economic times, you can’t be sure you’ll be able to afford the fraxel, microdermabrasion, laser, chemical peels and dermal fillers you’ll no doubt need when you reach retirement age. Here’s a bright idea – invest in your skin’s future and save money on surgery down the line. Nivea Sun’s Light Feel Face Veil is a very wise expenditure, scientifically formulated to produce consistently great returns. It is SPF 30+ and it will protect you against UVA and UVB rays. It won’t turn you into Casper the shiny-faced ghost either. Thanks to its gel formula, Nivea’s Light Feel Face Veil goes on smoothly under makeup and doesn’t look greasy or white when worn alone. Plus, it’s a lot cheaper than skin cancer treatment and can be bought at all good chemists.
A while ago, whilst flicking through a copy of a British magazine, we saw a picture of a lamb that was so cute, so white and so fluffy that when we looked at it our ovaries climbed out of our bodies and ran off to find us a husband so that we could have fluffy lamb babies of our own. Keds new range of wedge sneakers produced much the same reaction in us. With their round toes, little girl buttons, bows and colourful patterns, they are the cutest shoes we’ve seen in ages. Plus, thanks to their rubber soles, they provide height without hurt. At less than $80 a pop, you might even be able to get more than one style. Stockists: 03 8878 3000.
Don’t you hate seeing people at festivals wearing ridiculously cool shades, and when you ask them where the frames are from they turn out to be so cheap and nasty they feel like they’re made of Sprite bottles or they were found in a rural op-shop, like a rare diamond in a pile of coal. Well the creators of Retrosuperfuture (who incidentally run one of the coolest magazines and online radio stations in Italy, PIG), feel your pain, and were inspired by just such moments. Enter their high quality, bright coloured acetate sunglasses; they’re classic frame shapes with clever differences. We are so in love with the clear, Perspex looking frames, we actually flap our hands when we look at them.
Melinda and Narina have your summer wardrobe covered. Named for the Sydney based sisters who design and run the label, Melinda and Narina make pretty, girly pieces with a strong sense of fun. Constructed from high quality fabrics, Melinda and Narina dresses are based on classic cuts but they still maintain a youthful quality. Their use of bright colours, sweet prints, and clever design features make Melinda and Narina’s pieces perfect for festivals and nights at the beach. We caught up with the girls behind the label to ask them a couple of questions.
Tell us a bit about yourself and the label- How did your label get started-
Mel: From the age of three, sitting with my grandmother and learning how to knit, my love of fashion was apparent - my only request was to create a circular knitted skirt that would twirl as I spun around. The love of design was always with me. After studying at the Whitehouse it became inevitable that I would pursue a career in fashion.
Narina: My involvement with the fashion industry came about purely through accompanying my sister overseas on fabric sourcing trips. I fell in love with all things fashion. I have a background in business management, which balances out mine and Mel’s strengths. This has helped in establishing our label Melinda and Narina.
What’s the key to making the perfect summer dress-
Narina: During summer you see a lot of beautiful fabrics and styles. The most important key to the perfect dress is how you pull it off.
Mel: Some complimenting jewellery such as bangles and a hell of a lot of confidence.
We love the cute prints you used this season, can you tell us a bit about those-
Mel: The choice of prints is from Narina, as I do the design side. It is so important that she is in charge of fabric choice. Next summer you will see the beginning of Narina’s own line of prints.
What does the ultimate Melinda and Narina girl look like-
Both: You, me and everybody as long as the clothes are worn with pride
What’s the best thing to do while wearing one of your dresses-
What are the three things you are most looking forward to this summer-
Both: Beach, beach, beach (wearing sunscreen)
If you could dress anyone in the world, who would it be, why, and what would you put them in-
Both: There are three, Penelope Cruz, Juliette Binoche and Keira Knightley; we just love them each in different ways.
How would you define luxury-
Both: Comfort and freedom and a great imagination.
What are this season’s wardrobe must-haves-
Both: Our Salamanca kaftan, which can be dressed up with a pair of heels to a bar/dinner or thongs to a casual BBQ.
What can we expect to see next from Melinda and Narina-
Both: Loads more amazing clothes!
TAKE A LOOK BOOK
This is Genevieve.
“Our winter collection was inspired by the Tim Burton film Sleepy
Hollow and poetry by Edgar Allan Poe. The range consists of dark romantic highlight colours such as blush and ruby alongside staples of black, grey and denim.
Both the film and the poetry set a mood for mystery and the macabre while
somehow, in the midst of all this, also being romantic. In keeping with the mood I used heavier materials such as velvet, silk and lace with emphasis on detailed stitching, hand beaded embellishment and layered ruffles.
For the first time we have expanded into knitwear. Using fine cottons and wool woven in different patterns to form the illusion of different dimensions.
My favourite pieces are the cropped leather bomber jacket and the horse embroidered backless dress and the wool knit vest.” – Genevieve Er, designer.
What: Dan Moynihan exhibition
When: Friday 7 November from 6pm
Where: China Heights Gallery 257 Crown St Surry Hills
What: 'Merriment' by Mark Alsweiler
When: Thursday 6 November from 6pm
Where: Palmer Projects Gallery 2/238 Palmer Street, Darlinghurst
What: Tuesday Night Movies presents: Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid
When: Tuesday 4 November from 7.30pm
Where: Darlo Bar corner Liverpool St and Darlinghurst Rd Darlinghurst