Saturday, May 19, 2012

Sugar Daddy. Sugar Mommy.

Old-school and classic all the way, Fratelli Rossetti is best known and well-recognized internationally for eleganza-style footwear and accessories that cater to the status-minded, well-heeled (no pun intended here) man and woman. Through the years, the venerable Italian company has always kept the Rossetti name and the brand’s authentic DNA of style and haute couture-fashion at luxury price-points front and center; nothing new about all of that in 2012. But, what is new and quite exciting to both of the men’s and women’s collections for the Fall-Winter 2012-13 season is the verve, elan and sex-appeal of basically everything the company serves up for the new season, right across the board.

With all of this being said, let us begin with an overview of the “Milano Moda Men” grouping, which is clearly all about “Colour that fits like a glove”, or in other words, the presentation of “All Over”, the shoe coloured from head to toe. In this vein, wintertime is definitely all about colour, as evidenced by an array of hyper cool footwear – Brera moccasin, round-toe lace-up, ankle and sporty boots, et al., rendered in suede or batik calfskin - painted by fine craftsmen, from the uppers to the sole, in one singular nuance. Here, shades of myrtle, ottanium, bottle green and burgundy seem just perfect for men like the traditional gent, all the way through to the Williamsburg-Greenpoint, Brooklyn hipster; the kind of guys who favor wit, whimsy and refined style, while not taking themselves too seriously. 

Men, If FR's shoes Fit... 

In general, Rossetti’s “All Over” collection is a prime example of how the company lavishes care and attention to every detail, even those that are well hidden. Further to the fact that the company produces nothing less than haute couture footwear, no matter if the customer is male or female, is the fact that each shoe, which generally requires at least three days of work to complete, is made in Milan’s Parabiago workshops. Finite construction techniques include cutting and sewing using traditional methods, whereby master artisans paint the welt using a brush and the same colour as the uppers. Next, the profile (sole edge) is painted and wax buffed by hand to finish and emphasize the colour. Lastly, the sole is in turn artisan painted, and coordinated with the rest of the shoe, to give a unique and different, one-of-a-kind effect.

Taking its cue from the menswear grouping, Rossetti presents “the wo-mannish style” for girls who want feminine and sensual footwear with a masculine twist. Obviously, this mode of thinking translates well for the woman who is androgynous and chic; conscious and anti-conformist. The new line is chock-full of typically masculine prints and detailing, all of which are sexy, modern, and fresh for the coming season. For Rossetti, the story is about a modern-day heroine returning to the sartorial rigour of the 30’s and ‘40s, while at the same time, has no problem in showing off her feminine irreverence. A key trend for the season is the “Dandy” grouping, the hallmark of which includes slip-ons, boots and ankle-boots, in a vintage-look leather, seen in classic shades of tan, dark brown, burgundy and bottle green.
FR Gives Ladies Its Full Support!
Added retro and vintage details, such as piping and internal edging in grosgrain, complete the feeling. Anti-conformist inspiration plays through in the new “derby without laces”, which creates an easy-going and andro-chic look.

Thursday, May 3, 2012


I’ve always loved the taste of Juicy fruit gum. It’s sweet, fresh and habit forming. And that’s exactly how I would describe the preview of the Juicy Couture fall collection. Between music, the crowd of trendsetters and the delicious nibbles and drinks that waiters passed around it was nearly impossible to actually check out the clothes and accessories but nothing could get in the way of this intrepid editor on a mission to check out the goods.  

C&C Liked The Juice!
Photo Credit:  M. McKenzie 

Sure, much of what I saw was aimed at the younger set, however with a bit of judicious editing I found a lot of very wearable and yes sophisticated items. Case in point, the fabulous faux fur outerwear. I especially liked the steel grey “seal” topper that looked awfully real. Paired with a pair of flannel trousers it could work in the boardroom as well as with jeans on the weekend. Something to think about if you’re hesitating to shop at one of the Juicy boutiques. Age is all in the mind (at least my mind). I did long to own one of the hot magenta faux fur trapper hats but common sense will prevail. I’m still debating the wisdom of buying a pair of animal print ankle boots, they’re really sharp looking and the heels don’t seem all that high. Investing in a pair could really add zing to your fall wardrobe.  

C&C Got Pulpy Over These Four Looks!

Photo Credit:  M. McKenzie

One thing that Juicy Couture does really well is coordinating all the accessories, handbags and shoes with their rtw and at this event the styling was on right target. If nothing else please buy one of the terrific necklaces, or any one of the clutch bags if you want a shot of color (yes, brights are still on trend for fall).

 Squeeze This Combo!
Photo Credit:  M. McKenzie

I look forward to hitting the Juicy boutique as soon as the fall merchandise comes in and so should you. I have spoken! 

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Stop at the Red Light!

When Red Light PR throws a bash to introduce the working press to their stable of hip designers attending is a no-brainer as far as I’m concerned. Why? Because I get to check out the best collections in one go, and get treated to lunch, a manicure and a choice of (drum roll, please) free clothes. Believe me, no editor in her or his right mind turns that down.

Down to business and the fall collections I flipped over out of a vast selection of great brands. Numero uno in my book is DARLING, a UK based on trend collection of dresses, sportswear and handbags. I’d compare the brand to Alice +Olivia and Milly. But don’t think you have to be a twenty year old to wear this stuff as even I found a terrific black wool tweed coat with faux fox sleeves that I could see myself in. Also terrific and on my radar was a black crew neck sweater with polka dot pockets shown atop slim black trousers. Peter Pan collared blouses, darling cardigans, and a whole slew of girly dresses rounded out the very feminine collection. Check Darling out at

ROBB & HUGO screams young, hip downtown New Yorker with a hint of Jil Sander thrown in. This is the place for skinny jeans, slouchy tops and my favorite item, a shrunken one button peplum jacket in taupe or black.

GRACIA appeals to a more sophisticated consumer of any age who prefers a more classic with a twist vibe. My favorite items were the fluid crepe pants available in black/emerald or black/white combo. Very old school glamour to wear day or night. Another chic item was Gracia’s black “Chanel” influenced crop jacket. 

C&C Thanks GRACIA for Cropping at Nothing to Bring You This Jacket!

Adding spice to any outfit is a dramatic gold necklace that’s comprised of vintage swan components from BEE CHARMING. I also must have a fab charm necklace and bracelet from the Asian collection. Every piece on the line screams look at me. The designer’s philosophy is more is more so feel free to pile it on. I loved it ! Find out more at

C&C Teaches the Birds and Bee Charming

JELLY POP and DV by DOLCE VITA were two shoe brands that caught my eye. The former offered very affordable (think under $100 retail) flats, loafers and booties aimed at the boutique shopper. I especially liked a cute pair of black cap toed flats in plaid. At DV my eye went directly to the black/white spotted hair calf oxfords and the pair in bright turquoise suede with quirky pink crepe soles. Both were on trend for fall’s menswear look. These were two of the best looking versions of a classic I’ve seen in ages. 

DV Creates Shoes for a Sweet Life

These brands were only a smattering of the collections being promoted at the Red Light event but I was overcome with a food and sugar rush that at some point had to take precedence (and my eyes were on fashion overload at the end of two hours). That said, it would be a good idea to hunt around for these designers instead of settling for the same old, same old names in every department store and mall. I have spoken! C&C

Crap and Couture, Notes From the Back Row