Wednesday, March 31, 2010

been beat up and battered ‘round, been sent up and i’ve been shot down

After the February Redlands bust, Marianne Faithfull is seen here arriving at court on June 28, 1967. Marianne was the most infamous 'star' of the 1967 bust and ensuing trial. Famously, she was wrapped in a fur rug when the police raided the house while Bob Dylan's "Rainy Day Women" played in the background. The only female in attendance (Pattie Boyd, who was there with George, had already left hours earlier), the police and the media alternately portrayed Marianne as the virginal human sacrifice on the altar of hedonistic rock 'n' roll, as well as the scandalous Miss X (the name referred to her in the trial), the woman of ill-virtue and foul ideas concerning Mars Bars. Though she herself was not charged, she suffered more in terms of her image than Mick and Keith combined, who became heroes against an unfair government system. As Marianne herself referred to the rumors stemming from the bust, "Their story went like this: a group of dissolute rock stars lured an innocent girl to a remote cottage where, having plied her with drugs, they had their way with her, including various sex acts involving a Mars Bar."At Keith Richard's trial, he openly defended her against a prosecutor who sought to defame her publicly for her nudity, by saying, "We are not old men and we're not worried about your petty morals." Keith has remained a supporter of Marianne's character over the years, even in 1988 joking about the ridiculousness of the story by sarcastically stating, "We were right out of Mars Bars at the time."

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

staying back in your memory, are the movies in the past, how you moved it all it takes, to sing a song of when i loved, prettiest star

She is the Farrow sister who neither had a Beatle write a song about her, nor was impregnated by the devil. While Mia and Prudence were chilling in the ashram, Stephanie Farrow was modeling for magazines like Harper's Bazaar and posing as the face of Biba. Born in 1949, she is the second youngest child of seven children (in this order: Michael, Patrick, Mia, John, Prudence, Stephanie, and Tisa) to film director John Farrow and actress Maureen O'Sullivan.
As a teenager in the late 1960s, she became one of the favorite young faces of Barbara Hulanicki, who placed her in many Biba advertisements and catalogue shoots. She continued her modeling career with much success throughout the next decade and a half, until turning to acting in 1983 in the film Zelig. In addition to Zelig, Stephanie has played the sister of Mia Farrow's character in another woody Allen film The Purple Rose of Cairo, one of my personal favorites. It's fun to watch the two Farrow girls onscreen together; in addition to their striking physical similarity, they share a quiet delicate way of speaking that flows at the same rhythm.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

while mona lisa and mad hatters, sons of bankers, sons of lawyers, turn around and say "good morning" to the night

I've always loved hats. Even as a little girl, I never considered my outfit to be complete until I had put on my glitter plastic heels and some variation of a hat on my head. I rocked bonnets (during my hairless toddler days), berets, top hats, newsboy caps, and turbans. I was the suburban five-year-old equivalent of Little Edie of Grey Gardens. Perhaps my love of hats had something to do with my early obsession with The Secret World of Alex Mack, where the main character seemed to have a bevy of hats in her possession (she could also turn into a silver puddle on command, but that's another story). Or perhaps it was a genetic trait inherited from my former hippie mother, who has boxes of polaroids from her younger years where she was sporting all sorts of eccentric accessories atop her cranium.
My favorite style is the wide-brimmed hat. There is something quite alluring about a wide-brimmed hat - it adds an element of bohemian mystery to one's look. Unfortunately, due to my deceptively large head, I cannot wear most store purchased hats. So I will take solace in these photos of several lovely ladies from the past and present:

Mia Farrow is photographed in full Daisy Buchanan costume, including a white afternoon summer hat with dried flowers and lace, on the set of The Great Gatsby.

Sienna Miller with her then-beau (and now again current-beau) Jude Law on set of their film Alfie in a fantastically floppy hat. Though I'm personally not a fan of the film itself, Sienna's role as Nikki, a mentally unstable party girl, made me fall in love with Miss Miller.

Like mother, like daughter: Lisa Bonet and her equally as fashionable spawn Zoe Kravitz stroll the streets of New York in two fantastic head-toppers.

With the perfect hat on top of your head, any moment can seem beautifully romantic. Photographer Sarah Moon captures a lovely moment for the 1972 Pirelli calendar.

The fantastic Kate Moss is seen in a wide-brimmed fedora and her signature unkempt hairstyle.

Mischa Barton, who cites Marianne Faithfull and Anita Pallenberg as her main style idols, is photographed for Nylon magazine in an early 1970s-inspired shoot.

In artfully-applied hair and makeup, Jean Shrimpton looks the epitome of chic in a black turtleneck and black hat.

A large hat enthusiast, Marianne Faithfull doubles up on wide-brimmed hats to complete her classic bohemian look.

Wearing several Hollywood It-Girl staples, Vanessa Hudgens walks the Los Angeles streets in an American Apparel hat and Balenciaga motorcycle bag.

Born and bred in Hollywood, actress Tina Aumont looks adorable in her tan felt hat, brown suede vest, and purple top, paired with her signature kohl-rimmed eyes.

French model Vanessa Paradis looks bohemian chic in her wide-brimmed hat and ivory lace top.

The late Francoise Dorleac strikes a pose in a wide-brimmed hat and large knit shirt.

Maria Schneider looks seventies chic with costar Marlon Brando on set of Last Tango in Paris.

Muse to extravagant hat designer Philip Treacy, the late Isabella Blow is captured in her typical eccentrically chic style.

Edie Sedgwick fills every bit her role as a style icon in a black straw hat and Mongolian fur coat during her Ciao! Manhattan.

Zooey Deschanel looks precious in her 1930s-inspired hat.

Brigitte Bardot poses for the camera in a floppy felt hat and her signature sex kitten makeup.

Anna Karina looks fab in her feminine tailored suit and hat during the mid-1960s.

Paris-born model Charlotte Martin, former flame of Eric Clapton and Jimmy Page, looks hippie chic in a floppy hat adorned with dried flowers.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

'cause i know for sure, nobody should be that poor, to say, yes, or sink low, because you happen to say so, say so, you say so

Secret Ceremony is a camp classic starring Elizabeth Taylor and Mia Farrow in two of their most underrated performances of the decade. Released in 1968, it was Farrow's first release since the mammoth success of Rosemary's Baby in June of that year.
Taylor stars as Leonora, an aging prostitute who becomes convinced she has found her dead daughter in Cenci (Mia Farrow), who in turn practically adopts Leonora as her replacement mother. The young Cenci, a wealthy but troubled girl, knows how strongly Leonora resembles her own dead mother and invites her to "play house" at her mansion in the manicured London suburbs. In Leonora's own despondency over her real daughter's death, she goes along with the girl's proposition. At the house, a veritable troupe of eccentric characters circle in and out the gated doors - Cenci's aunts Hilda and Hannah, who rob their niece of possessions to sell at their antique shop, and her stepfather (played by Robert Mitchum), who arrives to break up this mother-daughter bond over the fact that he is losing control over the young girl.
The film is a great psychological drama - peppered with a very mysterious and troubling ambiance. Directed by Joseph Losey, Secret Ceremony confronts issues of mother-daughter relationships, women's roles, incest, lesbianism, and the truth of family. There is a constant morbid tone to the film, only enhanced by Farrow and Taylor's long jet-black hairstyles in the film. Though it was dismissed by critics upon its release, I treasure the campy indulgence and sophisticated creepiness that the British do so well in their films.
I love Mia Farrow's look throughout the film - its very Rosemary Woodhouse-gone-funerial. In her black tights, Mary Janes, and black smock dresses and capes, the wardrobe is the perfect match for the raven-colored long locks she sports. Though she looks divine with her signature pixie cut, I almost wish she had the waist-length hair with bangs (though I know its a wig...) in real life. Elizabeth Taylor is the classic glamorous movie star in bright jewels tones of magenta, purple, and greens, she wears embellished turbans, go-go boots and thigh-high printed frocks with the pizazz of a woman younger than her 46-years of age (her age while making this film).

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

well but i would not feel so all alone, everybody must get stoned

George Harrison and Pattie Boyd making their way to the courthouse following their March 12, 1969 arrest for possession of marijuana. It was three weeks after they were busted upon this appearance. Pattie shared in Wonderful Tonight a tidbit from her diary recorded on the day of this appearance: “fined £500 – the bastards.”
I positively love how chic and rock 'n roll people like George and Pattie looked when they would go to court. Mick, Keith, Marianne, Brian, John and Yoko, Paul and Linda, and countless others treated the courthouse like a fashion show. I much prefer their take on courthouse attire than the present-day Young Hollywood edition. Though their endless wild partying leads them there in the first place, you'd never know it from how clean-cut, prim and proper they are always done up to be. To any Hollywood It-Girl out there who will soon get arrested, instead of donning a black frock, pearls, and your prized Louboutins, why don't you make like Pattie and sport a burgundy velvet blazer and or a voluminous scarf around your neck?

Monday, March 22, 2010

these are a few of my favorite things

I return to you after a week in the sun, properly crisped and ready to blog once again. The oh-so-wonderful Gloria from musings & inspiration gave me this award, and I am eager to respond.

Ten Things That Make Me Happy:

1. Shopping. Even buying a tube of toothpaste makes me happy.

2. Watching 35mm film prints. There is a local theatre where I live that screens a lot of Hitchcock and Truffaut films - this is my version of heaven.

3. Waking up in the morning to find your skin looking lovely and fresh, and knowing you look beautiful without a spot of makeup on.

4. Listening to Frank Sinatra records, especially on a cloudy day.

5. Film posters in foreign languages.

6. Discovering a really wonderful book, and then sharing it with friends.

7. Convincing people I am the perfect gal for Paul McCartney, which I am.

8. Vintage magazines.

9. Daydreaming, which I do a lot.

10. Love, love, love.

I am cut for time right now, but this week I will edit this post to include all the lovely bloggers I would like to award. XOXO

Monday, March 8, 2010

Best Dressed Couples of All Time

Maureen "Mo" Starkey and Ringo Starr
The two Liverpudlians were together from 1965 to 1975, and had three children: Zak, Jason, and Lee. Their marital style was rock 'n roll in the truest sense - while Ringo sported long hair and fur coats, Maureen was decked out in psychedelic styles from The Fool. Mo was the most rebellious of all the London dollybirds - she experimented with changing hair colors (I have a fondness for her natural brunette with the blonde ends) and always rimmed her eyes with kohl liner. As they reached the 1970s, their look just became better and better as Mo adopted tough leather pieces and Ringo rocked an unkempt look in sports coats and worn-in shirts.

Carole Lombard and Clark Gable
The classic look of Clark Gable and his wife of three years Carole Lombard screams Old Hollywood. Stories still remain about the couple's relaxed unpretentious life on their ranch in Encino, California, raising horses and chickens. Gable favored a rough Americana style in broken-in Levis, button-down shirts, and boots, whereas Lombard took care of the ranch grounds in sundresses and high heels. Their look was sophisticated, yet with an earthy air.

Wallis Simpson and Prince Edward
The immaculate wardrobes of Wallis Simpson and her husband Prince Edward, Duke of Windsor (formerly King Edward VIII of the UK) are almost as legendary as the way these two came together. Wallis began having an affair with the beloved Prince of the United Kingdom. The Royal Family despised Wallis and gave Edward a choice: end the affair or abdicate the throne. Edward chose love over power and married the American socialite in 1937. While Edward favored clean suits in sensible colors, Wallis loved tailored dresses (usually long-sleeved) that hit mid-calf, usually accessorizing with a small hat. In the summer, the couple coordinated outfits in pastel pinks and light blues.

Iman and David Bowie
No marriage has so fully summed up the word 'glam' than the 18-year union of the first black supermodel and Mr. Ziggy Stardust. Iman is a legend in the fashion world for her graceful good looks, womanly fashion sense, and entrepreneurial prowess, whereas David Bowie is the messiah of glam rock androgyny. The couple is most certainly a "power couple" in every sense of the word - they command presence more so than anyone I know (of).

Anita Pallenberg and Keith Richards
I would be eternally jealous of anyone who got to raid the wardrobes of Keith Richards and his common-law wifey Anita Pallenberg. Richards openly models himself after a pirate - in a mix of scuffed up leathers, velvets, chains, scarves, and skulls, Keith always looks cool in a way that you know he didn't try at all to get dressed. The bohemian vixen Miss Pallenberg is a legend to every girl with designs on a Mongolian lamb coat and a skinny guitarist of their own. Anita created a look so definably her own that certain gypsy-rocker fashions are dubbed "so Anita." I like looking through photographs of the duo at different times to see how they switched and swapped pieces from each other's wardrobes to create their outfits.

Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera
Mexican painter Frida Kahlo and muralist Diego Rivera created beautiful art together during their often tumultous two marriages. Rivera, almost always in a suit, tie, and boots, created a great visual contrast to the petite and beautiful Kahlo, who loved to dress in brightly printed skirts and dresses, lace tops, vibrant shawls, and thick wooden beads.

How about you? In your opinion, who are the best dressed couples of all time?

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

"champagne is champagne in a train more than anywhere."

On the surface, she seemed to be the ultimate high society flapper. The only daughter of Sir Bache Cunard, a baronet, and his American wife Maud Alice Burke (known as 'Emerald Lady Cunard' to the world), a doyenne of the London society set, Nancy Cunard (1896-1965) lived a life of privilege from an early age. She was heiress to the extremely wealthy Cunard transatlantic steamship company, founded by her grandfather. During the 1920s, Cunard came to symbolize the "new woman" of the decade. She was sensational - a gorgeous sight in exotic clothing, she had everyone hanging on her every word. William Carlos Williams called her "one of the major phenomena of history" and kept a photograph of her in his study. As a little girl, she "wanted to run away and be a vagabond," as she told family friend George Moore. Despite her upper class upbringing, Nancy rejected the ideals set forth by her family, instead choosing to live most of her life as an activist to issues such as fascism and racism. 
In 1910, after her parents separated, she moved with her mother to London. Her adolescence was checkered with times spent in Germany and France in boarding school, other times her mother was content to have her at home. During World War I, Nancy developed a relationship with Peter Broughton Adderley, a soldier who was killed in action only weeks before Armistice Day while in France. Within the year, a young Nancy was wed to Sydney Fairbairn, a veteran of the war and prized cricketeer. The marriage lasted less than two years, many allege it was because of Cunard's lasting grief over Adderley's death. It was during this time that she was associated with the influential group The Coterie (an Algonquin Table of sorts for the UK).
After her marriage ended, Nancy moved to Paris at the age of 24. It was in Paris that she became involved with the modernist, surrealist, and dadaist movements, publishing most of her poetry during her time there. She published three volumes of poetry: Outlaw (1921), Sublunary (1923), and Parallax (1925), the latter published by Leonard and Virginia Woolf. She had a brief affair with Aldous Huxley, which would later prove inspiration for several of his novels, including Antic Hay and Point Counter Point, before starting a two-year relationship with Louis Aragon.
In a swirling mix of friends and lovers, Cunard was muse and mentor to some of the most celebrated and distinguished of artists - from writers including Ernest Hemingway, James Joyce, Langston Hughes (who called her "one of my favorite folks in the world"), William Carlos Williams, Wyndham Lewis, Ezra Pound, Louis Aragon, Aldous Huxley, Pablo Neruda Henry Crowder, Mina Loy and Tristan Tzara. She posed for Man Ray, Cecil Beaton, Constatin Brancusi, Alvaro Guevara, and Ambrose McEvoy. Cunard was also the inspiration for the character Diana Merrick, played by Greta Garbo, in the film A Woman of Affairs, based on the play The Green Hat. She was beautiful - a rail thin beauty swathed in expensive threads, and made up with smoky make up.
In the late 1920s, Nancy moved to Normandy, setting up the Hours Press in 1928 for young experimental writers. That same year she began a relationship with African American jazz musician Henry Crowder, who then was living in Paris. As a result of the relationship, Cunard became involved with politics, developing a passion for civil rights, even living in Harlem for a time - much to the horror of her mother (her mother was quoted as saying, "Is it true that my daughter knows a Negro?") She wrote Black Man and White Ladyship in 1931 and edited the anthology Negro, which contained early works from Zora Neale Hurston, WeB DuBois, and Langston Hughes.
Her appreciation for the African American community and culture translated over into her widely imitated style. Her arms were always festooned with African bangles, worn layered on top of each other up to both her elbows. She had a love of exotic prints, and wrapped turbans around her fashionably cropped hair. She kept her lips and nails painted in a deep vermillion red at all times.
During the years leading up to the Second World War, Nancy became deeply involved with fascist causes, frequently using the Hours Press to print pamphlets of war poetry. In WWII, she worked for the French Resistance as a translator. Of her political involvements, Cunard said "I've always had the feeling that everyone alive can do something that is worthwhile." After the war, Cunard left Normandy to travel the world. Her later years were plagued by mental illness, untreated throughout her life and aggravated by her severe alcoholism and self-destructive nature, causing her health to rapidly deteriorate. She was severely impoverished, and passed away in a Paris hospital in 1965 after being found on the street, only weighing 26 kilos (less than 60 pounds).

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

switch me on, turn me up, don't want it baudelaire, just glitter lust

Alison Goldfrapp (b. May 13, 1966), frontwoman and namesake of the electro-pop duo Goldfrapp, is such an inspiration for fashion, especially for me. The "Ooh La La" singer is famously elusive about her personal life, and very hesitant to give interviews. This media shyness adds to the air of mystery surrounding this Brit bird, allowing her to adopt a new style persona with each album release. She has had as many transformations under her belt as fellow songstress Madonna, and it is easy to understand Goldfrapp's criticism of the Material Girl for allegedly ripping off her style (The British press is on her side - calling Madge 'Oldfrapp').
Whatever you think about the Madonna-drama, you have to admit that Alison Goldfrapp has some serious style. I adore her for her free-spirited approach to performing (she is rarely seen in shoes while on stage) and her love of all things glamorous. She always looks like she's having fun in what she's wearing, which is honestly the whole point of fashion, isn't it? Her fashion tip: "Just always do your own thing and wear whatever you want."

The Felt Mountain Years (2000-2002):
For Goldfrapp's debut LP Felt Mountain, she was all about berets, Hunter rain boots paired with parkas, soft finger waves, and Heidi braids. A neo-grunge meets English country rose emerged and became one of her most popular looks.

The Black Cherry Years (2003-2004):
For Black Cherry, Goldfrapp was Little Red Riding Hood gone bad. She piled her curls on top of her head in a very Helena Bonham Carter fashion, and concentrated her wardrobe around a black and red palette. She also adopted Vivienne Westwood punk and introduced into her wardrobe velvet capes, top hats, bustier dresses, 1940s-inspired hats, and stilettos worn with striped ankle socks.

The Supernature Years (2005-2006):
For Supernature she went ultra-glam, with her now-signature mane of platinum corkscrew curls and heavily made-up dollybird eyes. This look is reminiscent of 1970s Biba girls who paired the decadent noir looks of the 1920s and 1930s with the glam rock style of the decade. Sculpting her brows into a pin-thin style last seen on the likes of Jean Harlow, Goldfrapp indulged in a love affair with peacock feathers, turban hats, tuxedo jackets, jumpsuits, sky-high platform heels, black lingerie poking out of her clothes, and fishnets. The neo-flapper look is such an integral part of the Supernature look. You can't see it in the photograph but the black jumpsuit she is seen wearing in the lower row of photographs is actually covered in a thick ring of fringe from the knee down, and creates a halo around her as she dances (seen in the 'Ooh La La' video).

The Seventh Tree Years (2007-2008):
In a striking change from the glam rock aesthetic of Supernature, Goldfrapp put away her jumpsuits and platforms and embraced the folkier vibe of Seventh Tree. With oversized poets blouses, tri-corn pirate hats decorated with marabou feathers, multi-colored harlequin suits, over-the-knee socks, the psychedelic carnival inspiration of the album is obvious. She completely the look with a giant owl she frequently posed with.

The Head First Years (2009-Present):
The recently released photos from Goldfrapp's latest upcoming effort Head First reveal a late-1970s and early 1980s appeal. In oversized stonewashed button downs, and pink bomber jumpsuits, the look unites the glam Studio 54 look of Diana Ross with the color palette of Punky Brewster. She completes the look with eye shadows of blues and icy purples.

Her concert style:
She ditched her signature corkscrew curls for several shows, and also switched up her concert garb from flowing smocked minidresses to skintight bodysuits and dresses. She was never seen without a pair of sunglasses on her face, usually it was a pair of candy pink plastic heart-shaped frames.

Going along with the circus aesthetic of Seventh Tree is one of Goldfrapp's most worn concert outfits. A black and white checkered smock dress with large yarn 'buttons', it was accessorized with her signature microphone stand decorated with ribbons and dried flowers.

This dress, which Goldfrapp wore both in concert and at the 2008 Glastonbury festival, is a smock dress made of ribbons. I swoon over it's amazingness. If anyone knows how to make/get one and would like to be kind enough to fill me in, I will be eternally grateful to your kindness.

I adore the coral dress that Goldfrapp sported in many concerts. Similar to the black and white dress in shape, as well as with the pom poms made of yarn, this dress was a perfect piece for the Seventh Tree tour.

Monday, March 1, 2010

change clothes, and go

Natalia Vodianova was granted the wish of girls everywhere when she dressed up as some of fashion's most iconic models. Look through the photos to see how she and the Vogue crew successfully captured the essences of everyone from Dovima to Veruschka.

credit: US Vogue Magazine, May 2009