A New Designer? Kira Plastinina

I may be totally out of the loop and horribly old fashioned, but not only had I never heard of Kira Plastinina but, now that I have, I’m kind of appalled.

It seems Miss Plastinina is a 15 year old Russian girl who has fashioned herself a “designer” and has somehow been able to create her own line and open almost 30 stores in Russian. She also has plans to open stores in the US this year.

Okay, I know how she was able to do this. And I don’t think it’s because she’s some amazing talent or a fashion prodigy. It just so happens her father is worth something to the tune of $700 million.

Thanks, Daddy!

Her clothes are, obviously, targeted at the tween-teen-twenty-year-old, with lots of pink and purple, cutesy hearts and lots of bows and ruffles. What appalls me the most is not the fact that she really thinks she is a designer of the caliber of other trained designers, but that mainstream news and other fashion media are actually giving her coverage.

Here’s your opportunity to check out all the pink shiny fabulosity. BTW, what is wrong with those models. They can’t walk the runway at all. Dang.

Sadly, although obviously, the poor girl has decided that yet another useless celebutant is her fashion icon and has decided to design clothes that appeal to her tastes. Awesome. I really can’t wait to see more younger girls embracing Paris-frickin‘-Hilton as their muse.

And just like here in the US, it’s not surprising that kids with more money than talent are able to play at designing. What’s worse, is that there are those who embrace it, which will cheapen the entire industry.

Learn More:

Kira Plastina’s site

Miss Couturable’s take on privileged kids and the fashion industry

An Extra Bonus

If you have any plans to get some new Manolos any time soon, head over to Neiman Marcus.

With a $650 purchase you get a sketchbook filled with Manolo design drawings.


This book features some of Manolo Blahnik’s favorite sketches.

*To receive your gift, the value of your order of regular-price items must total $650 before shipping & tax. One gift per order, per customer, while supplies last. Does not apply to previous purchases, sale items, bridal registry items, or store locations. Cannot be combined with any other discount offer. Offer expires 3/31/08 at 5 PM CT.

Not that you need any added incentive when there are shoes as lovely as these available!

I love that color green! These satin sandals are conveniently priced at $765.

Extra! Extra!

Well, I guess it had to end sometime, but I for one am really surprised – Target and Mizrahi will be partners no more!

According to Target.com, the five year partnership is ending as Isaac goes to be creative director at Liz Claiborne –

Target and Isaac Mizrahi Announce End of Partnership

MINNEAPOLIS–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Jan. 15, 2008–Target Corporation and Isaac Mizrahi are ending their contract after partnering for five years on the Isaac Mizrahi for Target collection. Mizrahi has accepted a new opportunity as creative director for the Liz Clairborne brand at Liz Clairborne Inc.

“Target has been a fabulous partner for the past five years, allowing me to make my designs available to every woman, everywhere. Together we built an amazing business and trail-blazed the hi/low fashion concept. I am now looking forward to this new opportunity with Liz Claiborne, Inc.” said Mizrahi.

Trish Adams, senior vice president, merchandising, Target said, “We’ve had a great partnership with Isaac. We’re excited that he has this new opportunity and wish him all the best in the future. Like our partnership with Isaac, all of our designers including our GO and limited-edition accessories designers help Target make great design available and accessible to everyone.”

The Isaac Mizrahi for Target collection made its debut in 2003 with a line of women’s apparel, accessories and shoes. It will continue to be available exclusively in select Target stores and at Target.com through the end of 2008.

I’m really surprised they would let this franchise go since they have his items in every category. And I hope the move is a lucrative one for Mizrahi because I, for one, could give a rat’s ass about Liz Claiborne. Yuck! I’d rather buy less expensive at Target than boring nicer at Macy’s. He’ll have an up-hill battle with that brand. I don’t think it quite caters to the same whimiscal demographic he was reaching through Target.

I’m going to miss the wit of my faux bois skirt and that giant peony print. I hope they can find someone to create even better and as fun items.

Kind of Flat

There was a lot of praise for the Chanel S/S 2008 Couture show but it left me pretty much uninspired. There were a few interesting details like these folded and pleated skirts, but over all, eh, not feeling it.

I like the folds on this:

and the pleats and stitching on this:

I did like these dresses. They were unusal and had an element of the strange about them.

But they were nothing compared to the Lacroix and Dior shows. At least not to me anyways.

But what really left me cold was the fact that they were all in flats. I’m sure this is to be seen as different going against the grain but it seemed almost too forced and silly to me. In fact I found it somewhat distracting from the clothes rather than being an accessory to enhance.

I love flats and all but they just seemed so out of context, especially with the dressier items. I’m not sure they helped to create an ethereal look.

Pay Per Post?

So, as I’m delving more in the the blogsphere, I’m trying to test out the different opportunities there are to bloggers. I have been approached by a few companies, some to test product and some to swap links. I haven’t really found a lot that I felt was “right” for me or this blog..

I did put up space for the Google ads, which seems pretty standard. But, while I want to learn more about ways to make money which will then further feed my shoe addition, I don’t know that I want to just put any old thing on here either in the guise of a post.

The first company I’m checking out is PayPerPost.com

They seem to have a lot of content and opportunities. What I like is that I’ll be able to pick and choose and see if there is good stuff to talk about. Of course, if I do, I will let you know that is what I’m doing. Because, otherwise, it would feel really false. Have you tried it out? What are your thoughts on paid advertising on blogs and pay per post?

Professional in Pink

In my previous post a lovely lady made the following comment giving me some props for wearing pink but expressing her own concern with it:

I must confess I’ve been phasing it out of my wardrobe because as an administrative person at my job and pretty new in my career I worry that I won’t be taken as seriously. It shouldn’t be that way, but it is. When I get to be an executive I’ll wear pink all I want.

This made me kind of sad because it is something that I’ve seen being beaten into the employees in a number of companies over the years. It’s the incorrect assumption that the workplace cannot be both fun and productive. That anything but neutral cannot be tolerated and that you come off as unprofessional if you do branch out.

I’ve been in business for a while now. But it still surprises me how unimaginative companies can be. I understand the cost efficiencies that can come from buying the pre-packaged “cube farm” but geez! Talk about a lack of vision. How can you expect innovation from such a sterile environment.

I actually worked as a Senior Advertising Account Manager for 5 years at what is probably considered one of the world’s most creative and innovative companies. So there I was in a creative department in a creative company and guess what it looked like.

Yeah, pretty much like that (except my walls were higher and I had a door, such luxury). And we were “encouraged” to not do anything externally to our offices or office doors. I was pretty much appalled. It was stifling.

So instead of trying to spend 10 hours a day in a big grey box, I decided I needed a little color. And you know what, pink goes perfectly with grey. Luckily, I was already a Hello Kitty fan, and once all that started coming in there was all kinds of pink and Princess Poochie accessories to be incorporated.

The two that I used the most were my Hello Kitty clipboard, which was used in every meeting and presentation, and my Hello Kitty calculator, used to add up many a multi-million dollar budget. And you know what, they functioned just as well as boring, bland, generic clipboards and calculators.

Now, you may be thinking that, I work in a “creative” industry and can get away with such things. And to some degree, that’s true. Especially when you’re in an independent agency. But actually many agencies can be kind of stuffy and corporate themselves, for fear of pushing clients outside of their comfort zone. And at this particular company we were given, day 1, a “Look Book” telling us how to look, dress, act, etc. Even if we were solely working internally.

But, this is why it’s so important to wear that pink if you want to. I like the fun and sometimes quirky shoes. Shoes 99% of the people in my office would never even consider wearing. And sometimes I think they just didn’t get me. But it soon became my trademark. And they loved it. That’s actually one of the reason I started this blog, because I had people from my old job still asking what shoes I was wearing now that I’ve moved.

I always was a professional. I always worked my butt off. But I had some fun doing it too.

And actually would you rather work with someone all boring and stuffy or someone who enjoys being there? Who knows how to make the job fun for them and fun for their team?

“Who has more fun than me under pressure???? NO ONE!”

So I say, find what you have fun with and incorporate it into your work life too. You may not even have an office but you could have a fun screensaver. And share the Cute with some folks to get them to crack a smile.

And the most important thing is to be comfortable with it. Own it. If you are office-appropriate and don’t think it’s crazy no else will think it is either. They’ll think it’s just “so you”.

Photo credits to Flickr:
DrHaggis, The Marmot, LiquidBlaque, Clockwork Panda, Ntisocl

That Rosy Glow

The other day I mentioned that I was having some challenges regarding the sequined Manolos in Oro. I got all three of the shoes at the same time. The red and fuchsia pair where in more of a rounded toe style and grouped together on the BG site and the Oro pair was grouped with a version in black. They also looked like the heel was slightly different and pointier. My plan was to get them all, see which ones I liked and that fit, if any, and send back the rest.

But I was most excited to get the Oro pair. Now I know that Oro means gold. But if you look at the picture on the site (shown here) they seem to have a pink-ish cast to them which could possibly be extremely pretty. Also, in the item description on the site it reads: Choose Oro (blush, shown) or black (see below) sequins. And when you zoom in on the image there is a definite pink tone.

But when they arrived they were gold. Not rose gold and not at all blush, but full on gold. Shiny shiny gold. Almost tacky gold. And, as the heel isn’t sequined but is just a plain shiny finish, it actually did look tacky. The husband, who usually doesn’t not have much of an opinion on these matters agreed with me. Luckily these were 35.5s while the other two were 35s so they were too big anyways.

Since I was so surprised that I called customer service to see why they were so misrepresented and to see if maybe it was just my pair that looked so gold. They were going to track them down at the warehouse to see what the deal was. But I also decided to call the NYC store to see if they even had them in the stores and to see what their opinion was considering they were seeing them in person.

So when I called they said they looked pink-ish to them, not gold! What the heck!

But then they said they also had a pair in 35, which had not been available online when I place my other order. So for curiosity (and hopes sake) I said to send them to me. I could always return them if they still weren’t what I wanted.

They arrived last night.

And they are definitely more pink, when you look at them in natural light you can see a big difference. And even better, the heel is fully sequined just like the other two! I don’t think you can tell the color as much. Although it is not as “blush” as it is in the BG picture, more like a champagne, it is not the tacky gold like before.

The shape is different though. The Oro pair are much pointier and the sides near the toe-box are lower. And even though these are a 35, they’re surprisingly still a little loose, which the others aren’t.

I’m still deciding whether I’m going to keep the Oro pair. I’ll have to test a shoe cushion insert which would help anyways because these are both really high heels. They’re listed as 4 1/10″ heels and I think that extra little bit pushes them over the top.

So my advice, if you want to get them is to try and get them through the store if you want the sequined heel. I’m not sure why they are different but I’m much happier with this version than the ones I got through the site.

Patterns and Scale – Dior Spring Couture 2008

I wish that I had more time to immerse myself in all of the runway shows, especially Couture, because they level of fantasy and excess are best displayed there. And while I hope that more of that attention to detail will translate over to real life, I know that much of it can only live well when it is just “a dream”.

In Galliano’s Spring 2008 show for Dior, I was just swept away but what he presented. I loved the use of over-scaled patterns and silhouettes. You could see the very open and fresh-faced 60’s mod influences, especially in the jewelry but you also see the intrigue and glamour (influenced by a favorite of mine – the Madame X Sargent painting) in the make-up (made especially sultry in the non-organic embellishments), and the nods to Klimt in much of the pieces’ embellishments.

It was interesting that the tempered the excess of the clothes with a simple wardrobe of shoes. Yes, they, in and of themselves, are excessive but in using the same style (only varied in color and material) he kept the focus firmly on the clothes and helped to ground the variety of shapes, patterns and textures.

As the Manolo has said before, we are passing the zenith of this style of shoe. Especially when, you see a high-concept shoe on a couture runway concurrent with equally outlandish styles available for anyone to buy. Not just high-end, although they are there, but modified to a mass-market level.

Here are some examples all available now:

Guiseppe Zanotti at Piperlime – $750

Kors Michael Kors at Saks – $230

Nine West Taildrop – $79

Check out more of the show and detail shots on Style.com

Photo montage – Catwalk Queen & Shiny Style