31 January 2010

Glamour & Housework?

Heels & housework anyone? It certainly doesn't happen around here but I love the glamorous ladies depicted in famous pin up artist Gil Elvgren's illustrations, whether it be doing laundry, baking or gardening there's always heels, a beautiful face full of makeup and suspender stockings....The closest I might get to looking nice doing housework is replacing my old brown apron with a pretty new fifties style one complete with frills...something I might make next weekend.

28 January 2010

So disappointed...

So I was excited today to see that images of the Valentino Haute Couture Summer 2010 collection were online....until I actually saw them. The collections haven't been the same since Valentino retired from designing for the house in 2007 but I've been checking out every show since hoping that there would be a return to the amazing design and continuity Valentino provided, but to me this latest Haute Couture collection couldn't be further from it. Where are the pretty, girlie details, opulent red carpet gowns, beautifully cut feminine jackets, timeless styles - these are all the things I used to love about Valentino and that made him my favorite designer along side Elie Saab. I think it's time for me to accept that the Valentino collections will never be the same without the master designing it and that now it is a brand with his name on it taking a different direction, appealing to a new audience. I prefer to stay enthralled in his past mastery and there is certainly plenty to be admired from Valentino Garavani's spectacular 45 year career...here are just a couple of my favorites from the last few collections he designed.

Spring 2007 RTW

Spring 2007 RTW

Spring 2008 RTW

Spring 2008 RTW

   And from his final collection, Spring 2008 Haute Couture
All images from style.com

26 January 2010

Happy Australia Day!

Happy Australia day! I thought I'd take a step back in Australias history and find something glamorous, I came across the Miss Australia competition archives. The competition was introduced in 1908 by a magazine to 'find Australias prettiest lady' (and to boost the magazines circulation), it had many re-inventions over the years and one re-launch happened in 1945 with a new role as a fundraising event for various war charities. It also came with the intention of the crowned Miss Australia to promote Australia abroad 'with her trim figure dressed in Australian wool, our greatest product'
This image is from 1947, the year of Dior's new look, though I don't know how soon the new look of the big skirt created with metres and metres of fabric reached Australia as fashion certainly didn't move as quickly back then and we weren't inundated with knock offs made in china. This brings me to thinking about the depleting amount of Australian made fashion and the abundance of Made in China, but I shall save that discussion for another day and leave today as a relaxing one and to celebrate all that is great in Australia.

24 January 2010

Me on a Sunday

So occasionally I get to have a life away from the business of fashion, today I went to a winery nearby to have lunch with a friend. The weather here was beautiful today and we had a very nice view from our table (you can kind of see it in the background of  the picture) The food was quite nice but one of those fancy small bit of food in the middle of the plate type meals. I'm wearing the 'Freedom maxi dress' from my summer 09/10 collection, you can see more detailed pics of it here http://kristahochwallner.com.au/products/Freedom_maxi_dress-57-16.html Don't worry I'm not turning this into a 'what I wore' type blog, just thought I would share : )

22 January 2010

Fashion & Elephants

I've only recently come across this iconic photo by Richard Avedon, I find it so fascinating. I adore elephants and  was delighted to see them blended with fashion so beautifully.

Just a few favorites...

So we're all sure to have seen some form of a best/worst dressed list from the Golden Globes this week, while I haven't trawled through every red carpet picture, from what I have seen there hasn't been any standout 'I just love' dresses. Though it did remind me of this gorgeous dress from one of my all time favorite designers Elie Saab. It's from the Summer 2006 Haute Couture collection and I just love everything about it, the shape, the detailing but I think it's the colour that has kept this one in my mind for the last few years.

And a couple more of my favorite pieces by the master Elie Saab...

Summer 2009 Haute Couture
The pleating in the skirt and the detailing on the jacket are just perfect on this classic shape.

Autumn Winter 09/10 Haute Couture
This collection is full of white/ivory with the clever use of textures being the feature. (Can't wait to wear white stockings like these this Winter!)
all images by Marcio Madeira for vogue

18 January 2010

Red coats & Barbie

I've got red coats on my mind today, firstly because it seriously feels like winter here today at 18 degrees (!) even though it's the middle of Summer. And mainly because I'm working on a sample for my Autumn/Winter 2010 collection...a red wool coat in a sixties inspired cut, though it's not as flared as the gorgeous coat barbie is wearing in this pic. I'm really excited about the coat, the sample has come together without too much drama and it's the first time I've done a coat for my label. Stay tuned for some sneak peak pics of the new collection over the next few weeks.

The matter of Barbie...At the age of 22 I still have a love for Barbie (I'm pretty sure this is quite common though?) My first foray into fashion would have been with Barbie as I'm sure is the case for most girls, doing Barbies hair, changing outfits and playing with the colour change make up is what I remember. I'm sure this has had an influence on my love for fashion today, and with Barbies 50 year history I can always turn to her to see fashions changing faces over the years. Sadly my mum got rid of all my Barbies when I thought I was too cool for them as a pre teen. Someday I want to start collecting and have a dedicated pink Barbie room with shabby chic furniture and a huge sunny window. Ok enough of Barbie and time to get back to the real world!

17 January 2010

Perfect setting for a sundress...

I would love to be spending my Sunday afternoon in this gorgeous garden party setting wearing a ladylike cotton sundress and large brimmed hat indulging in cocktails and cupcakes.

I just love the colours and not-a-care-in-the-world look of this, I often save images like this to use as design inspiration particularly for the colour palette.

image from countryliving.com

16 January 2010

A day at the beach


I'm a bit behind this year and even though we're already half way through Summer in Australia I've just started thinking about getting a new bikini. I just adore this image from 1952, she looks so relaxed and glamorous, it's inspired me to put aside the string bikini this year and look for something fifties inspired....

and Now...

At the top of my list so far is this gnome print high waisted bikini from the Hotel Bondi Swim 'Peaches & Cream' collection. It's the exact shape I was after but it's the cute gnome print that's really got me hooked on this one, it's something a little different. Now to make time to actually get to the beach for the first time this summer...
images 1. Photo by Nina Leen from July 1952 LIFE magazine 2. http://www.hotelbondiswim.com/

14 January 2010

Captured beauty...

This is one of my all time favorite fashion images, shot by iconic fashion photographer John French in 1965, this image of Jean Shrimpton epitomises the elegance and beauty that really inspire me.

image by John French via memoryprints.com