My favourite Galliano collection for Dior

31/08/2012

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If I was a tsarina from Imperial Russia (or, as Galliano imagined, a young lady living in an English countryside, which is almost me) I would like to be born, raised and sent away on the last day of my life wearing these clothes. 

It’s been two years since the Christian Dior Fall/Winter 2010/11 show, and I still want to touch the fabric, admire every detail, the fur, the delicate prints, silk flowers and ribbons, and the peachy soft leather. I long to feel the whisper of organza on my skin. I want to wear pearls and hear their flirty soft clinking.

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I want to open my wardrobe, pick one of these gorgeous creations, the dress, the boots, the bag and all, and run outside feeling like an princess (or still that young British lady in a countryside) in a warm cloud of bliss. Totally impractical and so hopelessly romantic.

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The words can’t describe how much I adore this collection. It took my breath away. It’s so me, I want to cry… As if Galliano saw my dreams, read my mind and made friends with my soul. This isn’t just love… this is a pure desire for beauty, sensuality and femininity.

 

P.S. The week isn’t over just because it’s Friday. Tomorrow I will share a story and on Sunday – a very special article you would not want to miss.

Photo source: Christian Dior Ready-to-Wear campaign Fall/Winter 2010/11, style.com

John Galliano, the documentary

30/08/2012

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This is one of my most recent finds that made me change my mind about writing a usual bio generously sprinkled with photographs. I always feel (and mentioned it several times in the past) that seeing a fashion show has an incredible power over our imagination and emotions – much stronger than any beautiful photo from a collection. Combined with a story told by Galliano himself as well as people who admire his talent turns this documentary into a precious gem. Enjoy this beautiful fashion moment…

Photo source: John Galliano’s inspiration board for Fall 2007 show via Numero No. 88 November 2007

Stylish quote

29/08/2012

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"Style is wearing an evening dress to McDonalds, wearing heels to play football. It is personality, confidence and seduction."

John Galliano

Photo source: Dior Couture in Elle Russia December 2010

“Who am I today? John Galliano, I hope”

28/08/2012

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Reprinted from The Times Magazine, 19 February 2011

By Janice Turner

It is Saturday night in Paris, yet no one in the House of Dior is thinking of dinner. In the lily-scented offices on the Avenue Montaigne, Sidney Toledano, genial and leather-jacketed, pulls staff into impromptu meetings in doorways. Soigne PRs stop their frantic BlackBerrying only to riffle through boxes of chocolates (fashion folks feed only on sugar, like hummingbirds). Above them on the fifth floor of this mansion building where Christian Dior began 66 years ago, seamstresses and tailors – the atelier’s “petits mains” – work under blinding white lights, pinning lengths of silk and gauze, panels of feathers and beading.

It is just 36 hours until Dior will present is haute couture show to the world’s fashion press and a clientele of women rich enough to pay £50000 for a single garment. And yet nothing is finished. Not one dress. Some embroidery hasn’t even arrived yet from specialist workshops across France. A lone corset with a hand-span waist, exquisite in itself, stands awaiting its gown. But this tardiness is almost a tradition: the all-nighter pulled by the entire atelier the night before a show, “la nuit blanche” – the sleepless white night – is a noble endurance test. My Dior minder bids farewell to the toiling tailors with a rallying cry of, “Bon courage!”

The man on whom they all depend, the wellspring of Dior’s £588 million annual profits, who creates not only couture but a fashion collection of some kind every four weeks, is sitting alone in his large, empty studio.

John Galliano is small and slight and bizarrely dressed. Black astrakhan hat, green doublet, shorts, woollen leggings and socks folded over scuffed work boots. His hair falls in two long straggly plaits. To my untrained fashion eye he could be Rumpelstiltskin or one of Santa’s more malevolent elves.

Most designers evolve a uniform that transcends fashion – Lagerfeld’s high-collar shirts, Ralph Lauren’s cowboy denim – but Galliano’s appearance is as quicksilver as his trade. Buccaneer, gigolo, Italian nobleman, pearly king… he;s been all of them. Who are you today, I ask. Perhaps it’s impertinent, because he replies, “John Galliano, I hope,” then adds, “I am always astounded that people ever ask me, “Why do you look like that?” Because it is a culmination of the creative process. When you are living it, breathing it, this muse, whether it’s men’s or women’s fashion, you become it. It’s a bit like an actor, a method, Lee Strasberg, if you like. The you shed that skin and you are on to the next adventure.”

Later, when I ask him if he ever wishes he was born a woman so he could wear his elaborate couture creations, he says, “I don’t need to wish. I was a woman many times. I’ve had 1,891 previous lives.” I snigger, thinking he’s joking. But Galliano glares. “Yes, on my first trip to China I met Shaolin monks. Beautiful people, so calm and disciplined and focused. And they told me I’m a highly evolved spiritual person. I have ten chakras and these 1,891 lives, and they all manifest themselves in my body, as you can imagine.”

So today, the night after he presented his menswear collection, a tribute to Nureyev, he is still manifesting a Russian émigré.

In fact, Galliano is a British émigré to Paris and before that, aged 6, he was a Gibraltarian-Spanish émigré to South London. Unlike Monsieur Dior himself, born of wealthy industrial parents and who considered becoming a diplomat, the current interpreter of his spirit is a plumber’s son raised in Streatham. And his accent cannons theatrically up and down the social scale, loud and soft, harsh and honeyed, reminding me of Kenneth Williams. One minute he is a duchess, imperiously holding the silence after my question a beat too long, so that I fear he’s about to say something withering. (Which he doesn’t, but, boy, I bet he can.") Then he’s all Brian Sewell, over-accentuating artist’s names, before he swooshes down into camp cockney.

I’d been told firmly before the interview that Galliano would talk me through his couture inspiration, and that my questions – if I were allowed to ask any at all – must pertain to his collection. In Paris, the head of Dior is an emperor, before whom we are all grateful subjects. But, in fact, Galliano is chatty and playful. The aspect of him that is most British, he says, is his sense of humour.

I remark that I’d heard he is the fittest man in Paris, known for having two personal trainers, taking long runs and obsessive daily workouts. "Yes, I probably am,” he says. “Up here (he taps his head) and in the body.”

When he left London 16 years ago to head Givenchy – he moved to the even more prestigious Dior in 1996 – he abruptly stopped being the clubbing-till-dawn London party boy. It was a controversial appointment – this anarchic Englishman, the first British designer to head a Parisian haute couture house since Charles Frederick Worth in the 19th century. France writhed in shame, as it loves to do, at this calamitous decline in its culture.

This was a huge job, employing many thousands of staff, and Galliano knew it. He started to ready himself like a boxer, giving up coffee, alcohol and eating junk; his sole remaining vice is cigarettes. He lights one, tilts back his head elegantly to exhale: “I’ve tried hypnotism in London. Gisele (Bundchen) sent me to a place where they put pins in my ears, which lasted about five hours. I had a woman from New York who came in and said, “Give me every cigarette, every carton in your room"!” And I got in the car and I was so grouchy for give hours that my team said, “Oh John, pul-lease have a faaaag. You are unbearable.”

It takes Dior’s PR to pull him back on track, to remind him we must talk about the source of his collection – the work of Rene Gruau, whose vivacious drawings were integral to the House of Dior at the time of its birth. Galliano opens a book on Gruau, for which he wrote the preface, and runs a clear-varnished fingernail down the lovely, effortless lines of a woman in a gown made of feathers, a jaunty hat that is a single brush stroke. Then he tells me how he’s attempted to recreate the light and shadow of the drawings with many layers of fabric, coloured from red to black. “So, hopefully, she will look like an illustration that has come to life.” He shows me blurry Polaroids of the toiles, the linen prototypes. Not being a fashion person, I nod, but don’t see it. To me, the “inspiration” of designers seems often a marketing gimmick.

But Galliano goes on: “There was an exhibition of Gruau in London (at Somerset House). I sent all the kids from here. They were like, “Oh my God, John, they’re like 3-D. Oh my God, John, when I saw the black it also had blue and a Modigliani brown.” It’s taking their noses out of these f***ing fashion magazines and getting to the roots of it. Finding the key to inspiration. it’s the library and its treasures – that’s where you find it.”

Like his body, Galliano’s muse must be properly fed. He is famous for his research trips, travelling to Africa to hang out with Masai tribesmen, with the Shaolin monnks in China, through Indian slums. “There si beauty everywhere,” he says. “But you have to open your eyes.”

Running every morning along the Seine, he grew fascinated by the homeless who live along its banks. “They’re called clochards; I don’t want to say the word “tramps”. They are people who have chosen to live that way. And, out of necessity, they have dressed to battle the elements. They are the most creative people. I take my hat off to them every morning. They know me.”

But when Galliano produced a collection in which he took the layered clochard outfits and remade them in fine fabrics, he caused an outrage. “Dahling, it was like the New Look,” he says, recalling the scandal when Christian Dior launches his extravagant full-skirted style in 1947. “It was awful. I was in the car and I got a phone call from our president, saying, “Don’t get out of the car, there are police everywhere on horses.” It was complete folly. A misinterpretation. The clochards understood.

Being brought up with Charlie Chaplin films, I was more into the romance of it, the charm and poetry. but they twisted it round. And the so-called homeless people who protested had the coolest trainers, Rolex watches, little hoodies. Yeah, riiiight,” he chuckles, and draws on his fag. “Grrrrrreat publicity, though.”

Was it patronising and decadent that a designer recreated homeless apparel in ripped brocade? Or admirable that Galliano sees – and reveres – life beyond the chic streets of the 7th arrondissement? Given his own background, it is fair to assume his motives are genuine. For all his mercurial theatricality, his nutty reincarnations, at root he is grounded, solid, an adored son. I ask if he is a diva and he says, “I am the most normal person you’ll meet in the fashion industry.” He recalls standing with his young design team with the Masai, “And they were going, “This is unreal,” and I said, “No, this is real. Where we come from is unreal.”

John Galliano and his two sisters were born in Gibraltar but brought to England by their parents to be educated. When I remark that he grew up close to my London home, he says: “Oh, the 37 bus, then I’d change and get the No 12 to Trafalgar Square. You never forget your routes.” He went to Wilson’s School for boys in Surrey, no crushy establishment. Was he bullied? “Children can be very cruel,” he says. “I didn’t think I was an oddity. It wasn’t  until I went to St Martins College of Art that I realised they were all very odd – the people at my school, I mean. But I escaped, I fantasised. I was never into fashion, not dressing dolls or anything like that. I had a red Chopper bike, which was my horse.”

His Spanish mother who taught him flamenco, dressed her children beautifully. “Even to go to the corner shop she would dress us, polish us, scrub us. It’s very Latin.” She has been to his shows, but at 84 is too old to cope with the circus-like crowd. Has he made her clothes? “Yes, furs. She loves fur.” The family were devout Roman Catholics, and John loved the religious vestments. “There was Holy Communion – outfit! Confirmation – outfit! I was an altar boy – outfit! I did nice o’clock mass – outfit! All this game me a sense of occasion and ceremony.”

He passed his A levels and, always talented at art, won a place at St Martins. He looked set to be an illustrator. “They said I drew like a god,” he declares, and Stephen Jones, the London milliner who has worked with Galliano for 30 years, says the latter will sometimes give him a sketch for a hat, an exquisite depiction in four effortless lines.

To pay his way, Galliano took a job as a dresser at the National Theatre, which he says, gave him a love of costume and drama. “His shows are famous for their theatrical excess, stages in Versailles or the Gare d’Austerlitz, with acrobats or nuns in bondages or the whole arena turned into an Eastern souk.) He became obsessed with Les Incroyables, the dandies of the French Revolution. “Drawing by candlelight, tea-staining paper and putting wet bits of bread on it to take the stain out. Flicking toothbrushes filled with sepia ink and drawing with my left hand, just because it gave a better line.” Only in his final year, when he started studying design, did his tutors suggest he turn his drawings into dresses. And after years spent handing out in Dave’s, the college bar, he disappeared, inspired, into the library.

Such was the calibre of his 1984 graduate show that seats were fought over, and his entire collection was bought by Browns, the exclusive South Molton Street boutique; a coat put in a window was purchased by Diana Ross. “I was 22, a child, and the next day I was in business.” Except he was an artist, with not a clue about finance. While his designs under his own John Galliano label, in particular his bias-cut slip dresses, the default garment of the mid-Eighties, were a sensation, backers came and went.

At times he was living off the largesse of friends, begging dinners, sleeping on floors. Meanwhile, he became a mainstay of the London club scene, in the heyday of Boy George and Leigh Bowery at Taboo, spending days creating an extraordinary outfit for a night of peacocking and debauchery.

Finally, realising his career had stalled, he headed for Paris, ate beans heated on a Primus stove in his decrepit little atelier, until his plight came to the attention of Anna Wintour. With fair godmother-like mafic, she found him a French socialite’s mansion in which to hold his show. The floor was covered in dry leaves, old love letters and a broken chandelier, and the 17 outfits made, through lack of time, from a single bolt of cloth, were modelled for free by Kate Moss, Naomi Campbell and Christy Turlington. New backers were found, order books filled;  Galliano was reborn.

How does he feel now, looking back on those precarious early days? “Well, we say “hard times” and, at the time, it felt hard, but now I feel like they were blessings,” he says. “The wisdom, the knowledge… Yes, I had big knocks. But it is a ton of gold – the mistakes you make, the things you learn.” A lack of inherited privilege, this hard-won success, gave him a drive, a hunger: “You never forget how hard your parents struggled, how hard my father worked. How much they suffered and sacrificed. And I am still hungry, because I know what it is to be out there.”

Stephen Jones recalled when Galliano arrived at Givenchy. “Throughout all these hand-to-mouth years in London, we had always dreamt about these Paris salons with marble floors and chandeliers, and suddenly we were there,” he says. “But, really, I was not surprised. His tutors knew he was special from day one. Nothing John does is in the third person. He doesn’t have a yacht or a villa in Capri; he just loves fashion. he’d spend his last pound on a yard of organza.”

It must be exhausting, the ever turning fashion wheel, pushing out so many collections – besides his myriad collections for Dior, the designer has his funkier, younger John Galliano label, a children’s collection with Diesel and other joint ventures in opticals, jewellery, shoes… “I’m full of energy. I’m constantly inspired. I’m not afraid of the blank page,” he says. “But you’d faint if you saw my agenda – I’m booked up until 2013.” Does that never feel oppressive? “Occasionally you’re like “F*** that, I’m missing out on the moment.” So sometimes I just walk away from it.”

He is silent about his private life, although it is  known that he lives with his boyfriend near the Marais district of Paris. But he is no raucous partygoer any more, conserving his energy for work. he was 50 last year, though he doesn’t look it – his skin is taut and creamy, which he puts down to a biochemist who makes him special creams.

Does he feel nervous before the show? “There is a burst of butterflies when the ambient music goes down and you can hear the crowd get louder and louder.” And afterwards? “I float,” he says.

Two days later, on a drizzly Monday at the Musee Rodin, models are being made up in a long tent. It says much about Galliano that so many of his inner-circle collaborators are old London mates: DJ Jeremy Healy on music, Stephen Jones on hats; Michael Howells, who dresses permanently like the biker from the Village People, designs his sets; and Pat McGrath, a stately black woman who commands a vast team of make-up artists, who are paining models’ legs white and affixing red paper eyebrows. Galliano’s current muse, Karlie Kloss, is there, more than 6ft tall, an etiolated alien. Photographers and documentary-makers blunder between girls like heavy bees.

Gradually, swarms of high heels arrive, struggling not to snap ankles on the museum’s wet cobbles. Couture attracts a peculiar crowd: multi-facelifted Americans and French, a few celebs (film director Pedro Almodovar, model Stella Tennant and photographer Patrick Demarchelier), besides the key sign of global power transfer, a group of Chinese ladies in furs.

There are those, and I am  one, who could never see the point of couture; an unaffordable, unwearable irrelevance. but, as the show begins and John Galliano sends his models down the catwalk in their 12cm heels – the highest a human being can physically walk in – with the sulky mien of affronted debutantes, I start to understand.

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I am reminded of the petits mains, comfortable middle-aged ladies – the only normal-looking people in fashion! – working for Dior for 30 years, with their little spectacle cases of pins around their necks, sewing all through la nuit blanche. I feel suddenly moved by the skill and untold hours invested in this 12-minute show. And I finally see what Galliano was trying to tell me; the layering of cloth, which has the effect of shadow, a panel of beading like a crayon stoke, the quizzical line of a hat, which does indeed resemble the artful sweep of a brush. Galliano has made the effervescent drawings of Rene Gruau walk in the world.

Maybe it is a distraction to think of couture as clothes, since the catwalk versions are mostly too extreme even for a wedding day or the Oscars. It doesn’t seem the time to worry about this cruel, severe silhouette, designed by a gay man for freakishly slender girls. And the question “What is the point of couture?” seems as asinine as, “What is the point of Picasso or the Eiffel Tower?” It is art, yet, in a sense, more exciting and urgent, more severely scrutinised, more prolific, fuelled as it is by a voracious industrial machine.

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As the last model leaves, there is a theatrical pause and the lights come up again. Galliano himself struts onto the catwalk and throws a pose. He looks nothing like the man I met on Saturday night, dressed now in a black flared catsuit with braiding and red neckerchief, his hair black and feathered like Peter Sellers in a Sixties sex comedy, or Jason King. Later, after I fight my way through a surging, crazed yet gorgeously perfumed mob outside his private tent, I find John Galliano taking compliments from courtiers. He is quiet, gracious, but looks utterly spent. Who are you today, I ask this kaleidoscope of a man. “I am Rene Gruau,” he says, tickling off another of his 1,891 lives.

Photo source: The Times magazine, February 2011

The Era of John Galliano: Christian Dior Spring 2005 campaign

27/08/2012

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John Galliano, the last designer at the Maison Christian Dior worth talking about and one of my favourite campaigns from the Era of Galliano to start off the fashion week. 

I chose these images because they show how Galliano made Dior feel younger without loosing that special touch of luxury that defines the house – effortless blend of youthfulness, lightness, romance, sensuality - a skill that is so incredibly rare. His perfectly executed designs were unique and exciting. They told stories. They became a part of fashion history.

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One can hate John Galliano… Or, the way Miss Portman put it (while most likely having quite a few Dior dresses in her wardrobe), be disgusted about it…

One can erase him from your memory just like those book publishers – his illustrated fashion tale memoir by Camilla Morton was scheduled to come out after the Lacroix one, but then magically disappeared and has never been mentioned anywhere since…

One can blame him for every sin…

One can even call yourself his best friend, just like Bill Gaytten, the non-charismatic cutter and technical advisor, did, to then jump in front of the queue and replace Galliano on the spot… There’s always Brutus among us…

Or…

We can simply love him. Because loving a person, especially such a unique individual, makes one see and appreciate his best qualities, while ignoring the flaws. Love makes us search for answers – not turn away just because of an unfortunate incident that still looks like a set-up.

This week I may not dig dip into Galliano’s biography – he never really told much about his personal life or childhood and so I don’t want to be a nosy blogger or rely on information that may not always be true, although the articles I’ve found will provide you with plenty details to discuss. 

This week I will share stories and images that made me fall in love with John Galliano and stick by his side in dark times of his life. Because he truly deserve it.

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I wish I knew him personally, talk about life, inspiration and, of course, fashion, because, just like any fashion genius, John Galliano could deeply understand it. This man was born for fashion. He was connected to it via an invisible umbilical cord, so the two were unseparatable. Fashion was his air, his life line, his big adventure. It made his eyes sparkle.

I miss his presence in the fashion world. I miss  seeing him turning dreams wrapped in fabric, lace and crystals into a wearable, beautiful and desirable reality. I miss the excitement, the thrill, the second when you breathe again after the last gown leaves the runway… I miss the magic and poetry of his collection. I miss the tears of joy. I hope for his return.


Photo source: Christian Dior Spring/Summer 2005 Campaign

My previous posts about Galliano can be found here, here, here and here

Currently loving…

26/08/2012

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… this beautiful and super comfortable FreePeople jumpsuit. Perfect for sunny holidays, lounging around the house in style or wearing it with a loose white ribbed sweater and a couple of simple gold cuffs. If you fancy a bit of shopping this weekend, why not treat yourself to this gorgeous piece!

Weekend sign off

25/08/2012

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A very quick post today to remind you of an upcoming fashion week, so leave a few minutes in your schedule next week to come and read my (very long) posts…

Wishing you a wonderful weekend!

Always yours,

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Photo source: Free People September 2012 lookbook

Win Acne Pistol boots

24/08/2012

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I don’t think I need to explain why these boots are a constant sell-out and owned by everyone who loves walking in style. Even if you don’t wear them yourself, you would have seen them or heard or them or would think of buying a pair at some point.

Now you can have them. As a gift.

Bernard Boutique, a destination known for their collection of modern classics, has recently launched a competition offering a pair of black Acne Pistol Short boots as a prize. For your chance to win the fab pair, follow this link, “like” Bernard Boutique on Facebook and enter your details.

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The competition will close at 9pm on Friday 7 September 2012 and the winner will be contacted via email on Monday 10 September 2012.

Good luck!

Photo source: fashionising.com

Stylish quote

23/08/2012

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“A new dress doesn’t get you anywhere; it’s the life you are living in the dress, and the sort of life you had lived before, and what you will do in it later.”

Diana Vreeland

Photo source: Vogue Germany October 2006

Victoria Beckham look for less

22/08/2012

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As I’ve admitted before, Victoria Beckham’s Autumn/Winter 2012-13 ready-to-wear collection was one of my favourite. The silhouettes and colours really hit all the right notes in me. The only tiny teeny problem was a four-digit number on a price tag attached to every dress, so I had to do a bit of browsing to come up with my own outfit for less. Here’s the final version made entirely of the high street clothes and accessories. I chose a tote-style bag for practical reasons – you can wear it on your shoulder or fold in half and carry in your hand with a chain wrapped around the wrist like an accessory of its own. I added the aviators because Victoria loves her sunglasses and so do I and those shades seemed appropriate for this outfit. The only luxury item is an YSL lipstick because it’s just too irresistible. What do you think?

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Click to shop: Dress by Mango (£22.99), double-buckle leather belt by Jaeger (£30), wool cable-knit socks at ASOS (£6.00), Bailly ankle boots by Reiss (£195), aviator sunglasses by Oasis (£8.00), lipstick YSL Rouge Volupte #201 Red Muse at Sephora and Harrods (£23.50), snakeskin print tote bag by River Island (£40)

Photo source: elle.com

Forgotten supermodel: Valeria Mazza

21/08/2012

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Although she is still well-known in America, on this side of the Atlantic many seem to have forgotten about Valeria Mazza, the Argentinian model who walked down the catwalk together with Linda, Naomi, Claudia and Cindy, was one of the original Versace girls, graced covers of fashion magazines, starred in campaigns of the biggest fashion houses and was Valentino’s muse.

The blue-eyed girl was born in 1972, in Rosario, Santa Fe, Argentina. When she was 14, a friend of the family helped Valeria get her first modelling job. The very first fashion show took place in Paraná, her home city.

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After finishing high school Valeria moved to Buenos Aires to study Occupational Therapy. Since she was a teen, the girl made it her mission to help people with disabilities, so her choice of study course didn’t surprise anyone.

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While studying Valeria and working as a volunteer, she continued modelling. Her first job was for Caro Cuore, a Buenos Aires-based company.

In 1992 Valeria moved to the States, but spent a lot of time travelling to Milan and Paris where she worked for Armani, Valentino, Dolce&Gabbana, Dior, Versace, Ralph Lauren and Ferre.

In 1995 Valeria was discovered by Paul Marciano and became a new face of Guess.

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More campaigns followed… Versace, Donna Karan, Caractere, Escada, Halston and Chanel – a supermodel-worthy list, indeed.

No matter how busy she was, Valeria never stopped helping Special Olympics organisation and in 1993 was appointed its international Ambassador.

In 1996 the Sunday Times and El Mundo papers conducted a survey among their readers in order to select the one hundred 20th century most important women. There were only two models in the final list: Valeria Mazza and Claudia Schiffer.

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In the same year she appeared on a cover of Sports Illustrated alongside Tyra Banks and continued building her impressive modelling portfolio working for Elle, Vogue, Cosmopolitan and Glamour as well as many Latin American glossies.

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In 1998 Valeria Mazza met her future husband, Alejandro Gravier. They married on 9 May and welcomed their first new born, Balthazar, in 1999. Since then Valeria gave birth to three more beutiful children, two boys, Tiziano and Benicio and a girl, Taina.

Soon after the wedding Valeria and her husband as she were honoured with an invitation to the Vatican. The model attended a ceremony on the occasion of the first year of Mother Teresa of Calcutta’s death. Valeria and her husband met John Paul II during this ceremony. She then became the first model that the Pope received officially. In 2006 Valeria and her family travelled back to Vatican for the second visit. On this occasion, the Pope Benedict XVI received her and her family in a private audience.

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Her family life didn’t stop Valeria from modelling. She appeared in more than 350 magazine covers worldwide, starred in more than 30 TV ads of Lux, San Pellegrino, Villavicencio, Pepsi and Falabella, among others. She also made a few TV appearances including MTV Latin America, Domenica In, San Remo’s Festival, Scommettiamo Che? and Come Sorelle in Italy and Esta noche invito yo, her own show in Latin America.

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In addition to modelling Valeria developed her own make up line, VM Beauty, which includes perfumes, lotions and make up and became a columnist for Viva magazine.

In 2007 she flew to Milan to take part in a fashion show against anorexia organised by National Chamber of Fashion. After the show 30 models including Valeria Mazza received the “Giusto Equilibrio” (Exact Balance) award, because she is considered a reference of beauty and health in the fashion world.

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Photo source: ?, Versace Atelier Spring/Summer 1996 campaign, Giorgio Grati 1996 campaign, Guess 1996 campaign, Halston campaign, Versace 1996 campaign, Escada Sport campaign, Cosmopolitan UK July 2000, Elle Mexico June 2010

Reference: valeriamazza.com.ar

Valeria Mazza in Vogue Italia 1997

20/08/2012

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Soft and feminine, a little bit Brigitte Bardot inspired story from the February issue of Vogue Italia 1997 featuring Valeria Mazza styled by Anna Dello Russo and photographed by Walter Chin. I noticed that Valeria’s photo last week didn’t get any comments. Claudia stole all the attention and Valeria was left out, which was a bit unfair. To fix that, I will tell you more about this gorgeous model tomorrow.

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Photo source: Vogue Italia February 1997

5 ways to wear Chanel jacket

19/08/2012

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I thought what could be better to celebrate Coco Chanel’s birthday than sharing a recent editorial from French Elle show casting one of the most iconic Chanel items, the little white jacket, styled five ways. Aren’t little finishing touches, ingenious layering and ideas just fab? It’s such a cool mix of chic, modern, sexy and relaxed!

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For more things Chanel including stories and quotes, read my Fashion Week posts by following this link.

Photo source: Elle France August 2012

Weekend sign off

18/08/2012

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Summer is back with the azure cloudless skies and the sun pouring through the windows, filling every room with such a comforting feeling of eternal bliss that dissolves into the air… Suddenly the flowers and butterflies are out celebrating this beautiful day. Now, even more than ever, occasional signs of autumn, a bright red leaf here and some gold-dusted grass there look like beautiful guests that arrived to a glorious party way too soon…

I am feeling so relaxed today. The house is quiet, patio doors opened wide into our little garden, the half-melted dog is sleeping beside me and Chopin is playing in the background. It’s a day for tea and a slice of frangipane tart, music, a movie in the afternoon and then a long walk in the evening, when the world will be falling asleep and it will be just us, walking down a deserted street into the glowing sunset.

Wishing you a wonderful weekend!

Always yours,

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Photo source: Vogue UK July 2005

Parisian point of view

17/08/2012

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Vogue Paris is having a make-over starting with a cover of September issue that will be available from 23 August. Although the concept isn’t new, the cover featuring three different models, certainly looks very special and so will be the content, strongly influenced by Paris and Parisiennes, with more fashion stories, bios and new columnists, Garance Dore included.

“Everyone fantasizes about Paris. It’s the concept of the “Parisienne.” The “Parisienne” is a girl who makes people dream worldwide, rightly or wrongly, a girl who represents a particular style, a taste, an allure.” – said Emmanuelle Alt about the changes.

The only thing that I found surprising was the choice of models… None of them is actually French, let alone Parisienne… I know they are icons, but personally I would cast Aymeline, Laetitia and Ines – three generations of Parisiennes. Oh, they would look stunning…

Maybe later… Who knows… All I am really thinking of now is how to get my hands on a copy, or three… And a red lipstick.

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Photo source: Vogue Paris September 2012

Aymeline Valade: the Autumn star and my secret girl crush

16/08/2012

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When did I first notice this gorgeous Parisienne? I don’t really know… She just happened. Like a miracle. I loved her face - chiseled cheek bones, eyes, pout – a perfect harmony that makes a supermodel. I think she is stunning, just stunning, without any doubts or explanation.

This Autumn Aymeline Valade was photographed for several big Fall 2012 campaigns and made them look like a work of art. I have already framed one of the Armani shots, so precise, so chic, so very very classy.

If it was up to me, I would make her a face of everything, from perfumes to bags to sunglasses to clothes and jewellery because she adds a touch of timeless quality to every photo. I find her incredibly inspirational.

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aymeline valade donna karan campaign fall 2012

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Photo source: Giorgio Armani Autumn/Winter 2012/13 campaign, Chanel Autumn/Winter 2012/13 campaign, Bottega Veneta Autumn/Winter 2012/13 campaign, Donna Karan Autumn/Winter 2012/13 campaign, Reed Krakoff Autumn 2012 campaign, McQ Fall/Winter 2012/13 campaign.