Ugh. How one can long for a (welldeserved, if I may say) holiday. In 2,5 months I'll be strolling through Valencia and Barcelona with the boyfriend, can't wait. Up until then, I'm stuck in the Netherlands with my Master Thesis (a huge research/ paper you do prior to your university graduation), not that much fun - although there's one big plus to it: not travelling or doing things (enjoying life, for that matter) but full time studying instead allows one to save up some financial resources .. for that moment when I have a normal life again.
In a mood of pre-holiday fun I decided to look up the Spanish offer of fashion stores - fashion across one's borders. And boy, is it big! Big to the extent that I started fantasizing about a new wardrobe, as I'm sick of my everyday study outfits which are NOT fashionable nor interesting, but yet comfy (which is pretty nice when you're killing yourself over European Integration Theory, for that matter). The offer of stores in Spain will change that for the better, sure. Highest on my list are Topshop, & Other Stories and Filippa K - all of which are probably quite common for most of you, but when living in Enschede, NL .. not that much. (Now I know there are webshops, but come on - shopping in a store is much better right?!) .. So therefore I would like to ask you - do you have any tips/ comments/ ideas on where to go shopping in Espana?
Oh and yes, the hardest part. The boyfriend's idea was to travel light, meaning 10kg of luggage for 9 days for each of us - something that highly intereferes with my 'I will be buying a new wardrobe in Spain, yup' ideas. Ought to get interesting when catching our plane back to the Netherlands, wearing 16 layers of clothing ..
Discovering the 'world' of fashion, I never considered the Dutchies to be a real dealbreaker. I mean, up on the streets we generally have Espana (Inditex with Zara, Mango, Bershka and so on), Scandinavia (H&M, COS, & Other Stories, Monki, Gina Tricot) & the UK (Topshop, ASOS, etc), while in terms of 'high end' I considered France, Italy, Scandinavia & the UK to be the top notch with its amazing designers. So I wondered, what does the Netherlands has to offer in terms of Fashion? Then I googled 'Fashion / Nederland', & the fun begun. Below you can find a short tour of those things 'Fashion' that the Netherlands have to offer. I was amazed, & I hope you will be too!
Distinguishing between 'high street' and 'high end', the Netherlands have two brands that have well made their way to the high street global market: G-Star and Supertrash, the first being a leading denim brand while the second represents a feminine yet tough approach to fashion. An impression (pictures www.i-donline.com & www.fashionchick.nl):
In terms of 'high end', the Netherlands have two outstanding designers - or well, 1 designer and 1 designer duo: Viktor & Rolf, and Jan Taminiau. My first introduction to the work of Jan Taminiau was at April 30, 2013. How good did queen Maxima look, seriously? That blue robe, uhoh - and then I haven't started about that beautiful dress she put on during the evening program. I conducted some research - his work breathes everything I ever thought to be fashion .. a big plus for the Dutch fashion industry. Below, Taminiau's little boy's dream can be found - the dresses he provided for queen Maxima (pictures from Elle NL).
And then there's Viktor & Rolf. The one of a kind couple who stole the hearts of a whole bunch of fashion addicts - and right they are. Their style is unique, to that extent that I can even recognize their work (yes, me, the one who didn't understood that LV is Louis Vuitton for a long long time..). For me personally, their work touches upon art: it's beautiful fashion with a (sometimes not to wearable/ practical) twist. Below you can find an impression of their AW 2013 collection/ fashion show (pictures of www.dezeen.com & Elle NL)
Occasionally the Dutch seem to have their fashion outbursts in the form of an event or two. The Amsterdam Fashion Week makes its appearance twice a year, supporting the Dutch up and coming in terms of Fashion (Jan Taminiau showed there too!). My favourites of the last year? Elise Kim, Domenico Cioffi & Studio Jux!
Furthermore some fashion can be found in the Dutch world of Art as well: how about the 2012 exhibition of Azzedine Alaïa in the Groninger Museum, or that of Iris van Herpen? Or the Jean Paul Gaultier exhibition in Rotterdam? You might start a discussion about the (Dutch) interdependence between fashion and art, but being the newbie that I am - I'm gonna stay out of that. The subject I would like to introduce, however, is the presence of the Dutch fashion magazines - in particular the Dutch Elle & Vogue. If it weren't for these, my fashion sense would be nowhere right now. They managed to map everything has to offer, both outside and inside country borders, and keep an eye on the development of fashion in the Netherlands - and for sure it's promising, don't you think?
Oh lazy Sundays. Sundays where you stroll through the web without a particular goal - and so I ended up with some inspiring images from UK Vogue March 2013: Beautiful Rosie Tapner in items from Jonathan Saunders, Hermès, Rodarte & Céline in the editorial 'In Glorious Mono'!
It is not often that you come across a competition where the prize instantly has you dreaming - about what can be in terms of .. well, who knows? For me, this happened last week: I came across the competition of Wakukuu, and from them on started fantasizing - about clothes, shoes and what not. Uh oh ..
Wakakuu is a Swedish high end webshop with beautiful brands such as Acne (which I adore. completely), Helmut Lang, Alexander Wang and Étoile Isabel Marant (ok. these I adore too) - makes one without a tough wallet drool, to be quite honest. It is exactly therefore that I decided to take a chance and enter their competition, as they promise 10.000SEK of shopping money for the win: as I'm just a student, I immediately started dreaming about those Acne Cypress Boots. And what is this competition exactly, you ask? Well, they allow a girl to do what a girl does best: out of all the precious clothes on the webshop, one is to pick her favourites and style an entire outfit. When satisfied, the outfit can be submitted to Wakakuu, after which a jury will select a winner.
As I wish all my readers a proper chance on winning this fashion fantasy, I tought I'd put it up here; hence
I invite you to take on the challenge and find your inner designer - just like I did, the result can be seen above!
My favourite Topshop picks at the moment, which I will definitely be hunting down this summer in their Barcelona location. Enjoy!
As the Dutch weather feels like fall (9'C - come on people!), some 'fall' inspiration is in place - from the Céline fall 2013 collection, to be more exact. Some certainties according to Céline: we will be wearing wide trousers and dark colours are in place, as well as platform shoes. Enjoy!
Out of all I have discovered just yet, Céline is definitely one of my favourites - the colours, the stylish simplicity and the beautiful fabrics contribute to a sense of style that I just consider ít (ít as in perfect, awesome, balanced, feminine, desirable, continue here..). The image above provides an outfit of their SS2013 collection, and caused one of my biggest "oooh" moments thus far: with summer ahead, what's not to love about this design?! (oh and ps. a similar yet more affordable top is found here)