About Me

My photo
a·muse [ ə myz ] to hold the attention of (someone) pleasantly.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Masculin Féminin

Much like the obscurity that is intrinsic in the title, Masculin Féminin refers to a certain je ne sais quoi style that challenges the gender cues of fashion. Though not exactly a contemporary innovation (we owe much inspiration to Ms. Diane Keaton in Annie Hall & the title to Godard's 60s film), it is often characterized by tuxedo separates and classical menswear from tweeds and ties to suspenders and spectators.

To balance boyish looks, add a caged bootie and sunnies like Elisa Sednaoui (above in Chloé), choose deep V cuts as shown in the YSL and Michael Kors Fall 2011 RTW collections, or counteract a neutral, monochrome suit with a simple part of shiny locks and sexy stilettos in the style of Stella McCartney's Fall 2011 RTW collection. Okay, you're on to me; I'm thinking Fall...I'm thinking full-fledged-fall-fashion. And though the above editorial is from two past seasons, I adore the above images (Vogue Paris, Sept. 09) of autumnal, menswear-inspired pieces offset by feminine cuts, gold jewelry, and perfectly tailored blouses, blazers, and trousers. 

Perhaps the most feminine approach to Masculin Féminin dressing is in the makeup. Add a simple swipe of poppy-colored lipstick, as perfected in Ralph Lauren's Fall 2011 RTW collection, or seduce with rich, sultry tones as shown in the editorial from Vogue Paris, May 2011 (below); a deep cranberry manicure and stunning bijoux create quite an impact, as well.

Also in this aforementioned issue, is the spread "Smoking!", referring mostly to the tuxedo and the classic "smoking jacket", but also captivating the sexy, feminine allure of women who dare to dress avec l'esprit chic masculin (with the spirit of chic masculinity). The key? To wear trousers, bowties, suspenders etc. with the glamour and humor of a truly chic, feminine woman.

Gisele Bundchen, Harper's Bazaar October 2010

A more understated way to embrace a gender-bending look is by incorporating the smoking flat into any fall (or late-summer) ensemble. I love my Alvin smoking flats (Sam Edelman, below) but I am very much geared toward the laid-back luxury of masculine loafers and slippers including the Stubbs & Wooton slippers and Loeffler Randall neutral patent leather loafers with a crisp noir trim [below]. 

Catherine Deneuve in an oversized men's shirt and a fabulous beret...
Masculin, but very Feminin, n'est-ce pas?

Androgynous today means that men and women have the same attitude towards what they want to wear... It's not unisex dressing, but more the idea that you can see a jacket on a woman in this show, which you can just as easily see on a man.”- Giorgio Armani

Monday, August 8, 2011


If I could pick a one-stop shop to fill my entire fall wardrobe, it would definitely, yes, without a doubt, be J.Crew. Why, you ask? Because the Fall 2011 Lookbook is filled with colorful separates whose hues seem to contradict what is often subconsciously associated with autumn dressing. Color-blocked wool separates in poppy and fuschia and a monochrome golden ensemble, "Jenna's Picks" featured by mastermind Jenna Lyons (above), are quite arguably the culprits that first reeled me into focus on fall fashion.

Although nudes are a seasonless staple in my closet, I love the contrast of reds and oranges, be it a chic crossbody, bold stripes, or matching lips and nails, against an array of neutral shades. Leopard adds just the right amount of pattern and texture to a neutral look, and adding a quick swipe of poppy lipstick perfectly completes the look. Some of my favorites include the edie purse in pecan, which I have been toting all summer, and in italian calf hair which I envision my late-fall self toting with my schoolboy blazer [below]. I also love the new cafe capri in wool and the no. 2 pencil skirt in every shade...

The masculin-feminin trend is showing up everywhere this upcoming season and I am a committed follower. J.Crew hit the mark with its tuxedo-inspired bonnie blouse, a noir maxi skirt, herringbone and tweed perfectly-tailored separates, and gentlemen's loafers and oxfords elevated (literally) to chic femininity in platforms and wedges.


J.Crew accessories (jewelry, shoes, sunglasses, etc.) never fail to catch my eye and this upcoming fall season's crop doesn't miss the mark. Here are mon favorites, in snakeskin, azul stones, tortoise, & red leather; one could only hope the collection doesn't sellout before the leaves start to change...

"DO mix hot hues together. Classic silouettes cast in coral and fuschia make a chic combo. DON'T be afraid to use leopard as an accent". -JENNA LYONS

Wednesday, August 3, 2011


I know that fall fashion is on [most] everyone's minds of late, myself included, but somehow, dreaming of cashmere sweaters and woolen blazers while surrounded by the allure of the beautiful coastline doesn't seem to make much sense. While I must admit that I did make a recent early fall investment via J.CREW's schoolboy blazer in heather caramel [a great, great, investment I might add], I am currently trying to adopt a sort of fashion carpe diem and choosing to wear pieces that savor every bit of what is left of the summer. It is only August and I would argue that fall is still far on the horizon [practically speaking]. Speaking of horizons, I'm loving late-summer styles in shades of AZUL and those that reflect the sea and oceanic hues. Below is an editorial from Vogue Paris of this June:

These exotic, Grecian-inspired looks reflect the most beautiful shades of blue, complimented by bold, golden accessories. I love the swimwear, a sexy string bikini with gold accents and a monokini chic-ified by piles and piles of gold bangles and my personal swimwear staple accessory...thin gold hoops. Add a carefree braid and you might find yourself gracing the pages of French Vogue; okay, maybe not, but do choose a bright bleu maxi to maximize the appeal of upcoming summer soirées.

I absolutely adore pieces in a fabulous blue print, and a sarong with a greek-key-motif elevates the impact of an azul palette. A strong blue not only seems to be creeping its way into my wardrobe right now, but it is also serving as the color inspiration for my own bedroom. Whether its turquoise, cerulean, denim, or periwinkle, I'm craving to surround myself with bright, aquatic colors that recreate a seaside feel.

Vive le monkey-print! If you weren't convinced to don Prada's whimsical graphics through my last post, I give you Ms. Pedaru perfecting the look in this navy and white stunner.

Other ways to wear blue? Demin, of course, in the form of high-waisted wide-leg jeans à la Jane Birkin [below]. Also note her simple Marinière tank in navy and white stripes...

"Blue jeans are the most beautiful things since the gondola."
- Diana Vreeland