Maggie Gyllenhaal: Stylish Girl

I love Maggie, she is a terrific actress and represents a very small group of actresses that I think fit into a category all there own.  Actresses like Marion Cotillard, Audrey Tautou, Rachel McAdams, …. these ladies are unconventionally pretty women that for the most part, keep themselves away the papparazzi, and just get on with the business of building their careers and living their lives like us normal people.  I like that.

Of course, part of their normal lives is attending world premieres of their movies and often being invited to be the body and face of a major fashion label.  Which I guess is a nice little perk, wouldn’t you say?  That and the free clothing!

She’s unconventional, takes risks with her clothes and her hair and can wear just about any colour in the spectrum, and quite often does.

Maggie stepped out from brother Jake’s shadow when she starred in the 2002 S&M comedy The Secretary (I love that movie).

Maggie, who is married to actor Peter Sarsgaard, gave birth to the couple’s first child, Ramona, in October 2006.  The Dark Knight star replaced British supermodel Kate Moss as the body of Agent Provocateur in 2007.

The Hollywood actress couldn’t believe she was fronting the raunchy campaign for the French lingerie company so soon after giving birth to her daughter:
“I never think of it as modeling—it is just like playing a character. I mentally disconnected when I agreed to the Agent Provocateur campaign. Then, suddenly, I’m in my underwear on top of a piano adjusting my garter belt for a picture, having just had a baby. I thought, ‘What? How did I end up here?’”
 
Maggie says she “mentally disconnected” when she agreed to model underwear for Agent Provocateur.

Maggie also revealed she loves wearing expensive clothes and was thrilled when top designers began sending her free outfits. The 31-year-old brunette star explained to Britain’s ELLE:
“I couldn’t believe it. When they started lending me clothes, I didn’t know what Louis Vuitton was. I love fashion. I think Stella McCartney and Vivienne Westwood are great.”

Maggie Gyllenhaal doesn’t “have motherhood down” (- who does? – H).  Maggie has two-year-old daughter Ramona with husband Peter Sarsgaard – worries she is not giving her child the best start in life because she still works.  She explained:

“I want to give my daughter the same gift that my mom and my grandmother gave to me, which is the knowledge that, as a woman, I can do anything professionally and personally. I have everything open to me. But that doesn’t mean it’s going to be easy.”

“I continue to make lots of sacrifices to make sure my daughter feels comfortable, or at least as comfortable as she can. But I can’t and don’t pretend I have it down.”

Maggie she finds the challenge of motherhood “complicated”, and often feels pained when she leaves Ramona to go to work.  She thinks it would be easier for her daughter if her job had more structured hours, and so has decided only to commit to films which make the wrench of leaving home worth it.

Maggie also appeared in the Miu Miu Spring/Summer campaign in 2004.

“Sometimes I fantasise about staying home with Ramona all day, so that I don’t miss a thing in this amazing two-year-old’s life.”

“I’m an artist; I love my job. I feel very, very lucky to be in the position where going to work means I’m feeding myself. As a mother, you have to make sure you do that because that will nourish your child too.”

Maggie’s street style is cute and unfettered.  She doesn’t care what the critics say about her red carpet choices either.  Some have claimed that they are a tad boring.  What?  Boring?  Hardly!
Here is a woman who knows herself and her personal style perfectly.  Just because they don’t look like all the other numbers on the red carpet does not make her boring.

I think she is ultra daring with both her red carpet and her everyday ensembles, something which I admire greatly about her.

I love those days when I feel like trying something different and taking a risk – sometimes it works, sometimes not – the point is to do it!

xx

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I Heart Audrey as Coco

The magnificent Audrey Tautou as Coco Chanel.  She was hypnotic!



I have just returned from seeing Coco Avant Chanel ( – yes I am aware that I am well overdue in seeing this wonderful film, but my life just doesn’t allow me to get to many movies these days). 

I loved it!  What a woman, so much guts and determination, so inspirational!  I loved how the director illustrated how Coco’s talent was born and also how she drew her inspiration – how obvious it seemed to her.  She simply saw things differently and she never let convention hold her back.   



She wasn’t afraid to speak her mind nor let society tell her how to behave.  She broke free of the ties that others felt bound to and wore her clothes how she wanted to wear them.  It just makes me feel so proud to be a woman… I mean, how lucky are we that  Coco was the woman who gave us Pret-a-porter – she gave rise to the way we dress today.

If it wasn’t for Coco, would we still be wearing corsets?  I wonder?  She took a gift for tailoring and millinery, and turned it into an empire.  She was a true trailblazer.  

Coco’s classic suit interpreted by Karl Largerfeld, in my favourite colour green – it’s on my wish list, of course.  


Thank you Coco for being so brave.


Ciao for now,


Hx

Paris Fashion Week: Looking for Spring Inspiration?

Ok, so after writing about Milan Fashion Week earlier, I decided it was probably a good idea to check out how it was all going in Paris as their fashion week kicked off after Milan.  But – I warn you, this is a long blog!  There were so many designers that I had to write about that I almost had to make this a two-parter.  In the end, I thought, so what, let’s make it monumental!  


There was a lot of repetition…  Same old, same old.  Lanvin is still going through it’s Grecian draping period, Jean-Paul Gaultier (sorry to say) rehashed some old Madonna-inspired cone-shape corsets and trench coats, actually there were many, many trench coats to be seen.  Long, short, cropped, see-through, lace, deconstructed.  Other trends I noticed were polka dots and stripes. Especially spotted tights and socks.  Plaid, denim and digitally printed fabrics, and lots of black, white and khaki – or khaki themed colours.  Rick Owens showed why he’s still a sophomore and has so much to learn with his origami inspired but boring repetitious designs, with his models looking like cadavers.  I know it’s harsh, but come on!  Honestly, the media is turning these designers into god-like figures and why? Not a lot of them have done the hard yards and spent the time learning their craft like the great masters.  The media needs to slow down their instant appreciation and take a good bloody look!  Valentino was beautiful, but there was nothing really new on offer.  Where is fashion heading?  Where is the inspiration?


Is this is a reflection on the current economic climate, because it would be a shame if it is because I would have thought that in order to help us out of the doom and gloom designers would have bestowed upon us colour and light and traditional spring frivolity.  Givenchy‘s models positively oozed death-warmed-up – of course leave it to Kaiser Karl to top all the shows with his Chanel haybarn showdown.  No gloomy-faced models there, no they were all smiling and happy and flirtatious.


I have put together some favourites, some that are doing their best to evoke spring and some well, they just have to be seen to be believed.


Balenciaga

Dyed and treated leather that looked like denim, kilts woven and vertical and horizontal stripes.
Gorgeous urban looks, the tightest of jeans and tailored pants, hoodies and futuristic prints.  I guess not what one would call a traditional look for spring, but I loved it anyway. 

Balmain

I love these military jackets, very Duke of Wellington at Waterloo.  Daria’s tee looks as if she’s actually escaped a war zone!  Grecian / Roman influence is still prevalent in many of the Parisian designers looks.

Balmain has stuck to its shape from last season, squared shoulders, tight and distressed jeans, disheveled clothing, sorry, I mean that sexy just got out of bed look.


Chanel

Chanel outshone its competitors – not a difficult feat in light of the visionary Karl Largerfeld at the helm. Pretty dresses, ballet slipper ribbon inspired shoes, cupie dolls and french maids all in a row.
Deconstructed lace, batwing arms, patchwork, plaid and checks.
Lily Allen rocked the house of Chanel.

Colette Dinnegan
Colette didn’t fail with her gloriously pretty, feminine designs.
Spotty hosiery, black and grey prevailed, but oh so feminine.
Flirty, flouncy, lace, embroider and short skirts.

When she used colour, oh what colour!  I love this red and orange printed frock with just a hint of a bejewelled bodice poking through.  And simple green elegance, just divine!


Christian Dior by John Galliano


Oooh! The corsets and the tailoring, the pleating and the chiffon!  Soo delicious! 

I am loving the little tailored trench jackets here.  I would LOVE to have this one on the left.
Galliano is obviously still influenced greatly by the 30s and 40s – no problem with that, I love it too!
Pure glamour and sophistication!

Stunning!  J’adore everyone of these designs, particularly the little black one with the purple flower detail.  The colours are just so POW!  Just what I would expect from Dior and for spring, oui?


Jean-Paul Gaultier

Body armor and trench coats, such a mixture of textures and themes here.  
There is an underlying 80s theme in the collection, and the hair, well one cannot deny the Cyndi Lauper-esqueness of it all!

Givenchy by Ricardo Tisci


I loved this collection, it was beautiful.  I was disappointed with it too however because I felt we were not seeing anything new from Ricardo.  And the models, well they looked like they were the walking dead, not really something you want to emulate when thinking of Spring I expect?

Alexander McQueen
McQueen has just outdone himself with this collection.  The digital prints are out of this world!  I would give anything to see this collection in the flesh and not just online.  I bet the detail and tailoring is utter perfection.
McQueen truly is the master of avant garde for me.  He is always unexpected, he opens my eyes every time.



Sonia Rykiel

Stripes, quilting, shorts, skirts, suits, mini berets, jumpsuits and lots and lots of colour!  J’adore this collection!  I want every piece of it!


Stella McCartney
I think this would have to be the most wearable collection of the spring runway.  I just love the denim skirts and Stella’s gorgeous tailoring and colour palette. 

Flowing, folds of gorgeous spring fabrics, j’adore!

Très comfortable chic, oui?

Frocks to frolic in, can’t you just see yourself springing along the footpath en route to a fabulous spring party?



Valentino
Just so elegant and beautiful.  But alas, where is the spring colour palette? 



Yves Saint Laurent
Very 80s inspired, I’m sure my Mum used to have something just like this in her wardrobe all those years ago.  But isn’t it gorgeous?  It’s like he’s gathered the fabric and just wrapped it around the model and tied it all together with a simple belt.  

What could be more spring than strawberries?  So pretty and fresh, love it.


Louis Vuitton – sorry, hated it, especially the stupid afro wigs – blah!


Honorable Mention – Hussein Chalayan

Sexy, nautical chic, divine!





To my dear and darling best friend Kirsty, congratulations on the birth of your new daughter Maisy Rose.  She looks divine, I can’t wait to meet her in person!  My love to you and your family on this momentous occasion. Love you! xxxoo






Ciao for now,


Hx





Sources: all images from Style.com – with thanks.

Great Expectations

To say I am eagerly anticipating the release of the film NINE would be a massive understatement.  I cannot tell you how many times I have watched the trailer, hoping against hope to see something new or gain further insight into the production.


To watch the trailer for NINE, click here.


November VOGUE in America features four of the cast members on its cover, Nicole Kidman, Marion Cotillard, Penelope Cruz and Kate Hudson.  



Shot by Annie Leibovitz, another portrait features all the female leads; Judy Dench, Marion Cotillard, Kate Hudson, Fergie, Nicole Kidman, Penelope Cruz and Sophia Loren.


To read the VOGUE article written by Plum Sykes, click here.

To all of my friends and followers and readers, thank you for your lovely comments these past couple of weeks.  Life has been very challenging but so far, so good.  We are feeling very much at home with our family here in Oz.  Yesterday we experienced the joy of spending the day all together.  Three generations of us, and it was just as I expected – wonderful and touching, and so lovely watching my girls bond with their cousins… I couldn’t ask for anything more.  Pure joy.

Ciao for now,


Hx


Source: Style.com, Vogue.com, Coutorture.com

Curve Balls

Well you never know when life is going to turn you upside down.  
This week we discovered that the beautiful home we have made for ourselves was just an illusion.  The universe has something else in store for us it seems, and so the life we knew as ours in Wellington, New Zealand is over.



It seems that the world-wide recession is effecting even the smallest of film companies and so we have no choice but to return to the land of Oz.  I’m not saying that that is a bad thing, I’m just broken-hearted over leaving the place I had recently begun to call home, the place I had made the fastest and loveliest of friends, and the place where the sea changed colour hourly and its beauty never ceased to take my breath away.  


As for my girls –  well what can I say?  They are already packing their bags, but how much have they understood?  Only time will tell.  To move them from one country to another again, after only 8 months fills me with worry and concern as the transition here took quite a toll on them.  But they have grown and they are stronger and I feel they will survive this transition much better than the last.  At least this time when we return home they will have close family surrounding them to keep them real.


And so I just want tell you  that I will be off-line for a couple of weeks, but I will do my best to post whenever I can.  I will be back on board, blogging with the best of them as soon as I can get my girls settled.  I love doing what I do and I wouldn’t change a thing.

Ciao for now,


Hx

Milan Spring 2010 Runway: Bringing Sexy Back

MILAN FASHION WEEK – SPRING 2010 READY-TO-WEAR


According to all reports, legs were the biggest thing on show on the runways at the Milan Fashion Week.  Deconstruction of some serious 80s and early 90s trends was also prevalent.  Some designer’s collections were a triumph and others… well, let’s just say that some were obviously struggling to bring their ideas to reality.


Dolce and Gabbana
Lace, fishnet, figure-hugging shapes and the shortest of hems featured throughout the collection, but the most notable aspect was the colour – or rather the lack thereof.  Black featured heavily and considering this was the Spring collection it leaves me wondering why so much black?  What little colour there was was bold but still dark and too wintery for me.

Fringe with heavy ankle boots, very 80s inspired.

Lace overlay with ruffled skirt, ankle socks and heels.  Very 80s!

Fishnet overlay, very reminiscent of their early 90s creations.

Patterned lace overlay, again very 90s.  I think I remember seeing Christy and Naomi in a similar look back in the day?

Madonna’s Like A Virgin springs to mind here, minus the purple lights and fingerless gloves of course.

Splashes of colour, but again not bright like one would expect from a Spring collection.  The one on the right is very 90s inspired with the form-fitting pencil skirt.

Ruffles, leopard print and Doc Martin style boots.  All it needs is the laddered fishnet tights and the fingerless gloves – oh and the teased hair too!


Marni
I always love whatever Consuela Castiglioni sends down the runway because I adore her use of colour, print and her quirkiness.  This runway show was no exception as she worked her prints and mismatched stripes with spots.  I also adored the scarf wrapped hair.

Vertical stripes on their own or mixed with spots or stripes on the diagonal, only Marni can do it and make it look so wearable.

Jackets tied at the waist and shorts under tunics and blouses featured.  Socks with open-toe sandals – somehow it just worked.

My favourite look from the Marni Spring 2010 runway.  The mixture of stripes and of course, the colour green!


Alberta Ferretti
Once again Alberta didn’t fail to show off her expertise with chiffon.  Sticking to her rules of layering and expert cutting but using the trends of the season to inject some gorgeous points of difference that just made her collection stand out.  It was beautiful and masterful in my opinion.

Pure Alberta Ferretti, chiffon and a subtle colour palette.


Billowy blousing with a form fitting skirt, the inverted triangle shape, and lace overlay, very 80s.

Tailored jackets, belted and paired with chiffon skirt. Alberta’s original deconstruction of fishnet in the overlay here is pure genius, I just love it.  

Alberta’s colour palette is always divine.  This dress on the left reminded me of my own wedding dress when I saw it.  Not the colour, but the shape and the straps.  Alberta wasn’t afraid to shorten her hem-lengths either.

My absolute favourite of the collection.  Albert’as mixture of vertical and what appears to be chevron-style striping is just gorgeous!


Gucci
You know I don’t like to be negative here on my blog, but I just have put in a little about Gucci and Roberto Cavalli.  What were they thinking?  Frida Giannini and Roberto’s shows were lacklustre, uninspired and frankly, dead-boring.  Sorry, but it’s true.

Frida Giannini sent her models down the runway with bland shades and big shoulders.  Short leather jackets with huge should pads featured (blah) and overall it was very uninspiring. 

High-waisted pants, cropped leather jackets in grey – for spring?  This black dress is Gucci’s only saving grace.  It’s lovely and I’m sure some Hollywood starlet will be seen sashaying up a red carpet event somewhere soon, perhaps even at the Oscars?


Roberto Cavalli
Deconstructed is the only positive word I can use to describe Roberto’s collection.  While he did use some gorgeous floral fabrics, layering with lots of chiffon and silk, it’s just all wrong.  The master of sexy low cut dressing has gone for something different this time and unfortunately not one item is wearable (in my opinion).  Harsh criticism I know, and I’m sorry, but if you take a look at the following, I’m sure you’ll see what I mean!

A subtle palette featured strongly, but again, dull grey and dull prints… And what, I ask you, is he trying say with the transparent pants under the skirts? 

Again, jackets left open but belted to reveal what’s underneath but worn underneath is another version of those trousers.  Why?  And this jumpsuit.  I’m not going to write anything because it would be too harsh.

This jacket tied around her waist is the only saving grace of Cavalli’s collection in my opinion.  The gorgeous liberty style fabric lining is gorgeous. Ok and the cut of the pants is beautiful too, but that’s it I’m afraid.


Versace
Well I promise you I have saved the best for last.  Donatella has outdone herself this time.  Her designs have been truly inspired by the 80s and early 90s, dare I say that she may have even channeled her brother Gianni perhaps when designing this collection.  Every one was a masterpiece, but I have chosen just a few which I think are the standouts.  Enjoy!

These two gowns are my favourites.  Pretty spring colours, flowing fabrics, just divine!

Rocking the 80s inspired fabrics and hem-lengths – checkout the Joan Jett hairstyle on Freha!  And what about that see-through hem on Natasha Poly.  Only for the very daring (and the recently waxed!).

Big belts, tight dresses, ankle booties and spotty leg-warmers?  Very cool.

Transparent skirts over boy-leg bodysuits, for the very daring.  I love this suit, so early 90s with it’s details and cinching belt.  Is that spots I see on her heels?




Well that’s it for me this week.  Have a lovely weekend everyone!

Ciao for now,


Hx

P.S. Thank you to my big bro Kyle; fellow cake-eater, thanks for the link! xx




Sources: Italymag.co.uk, style.com.

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