TOPMAN x JAMES LONG – KEEP ME WARM

Coupled with the windchill, temps in Winnipeg have dropped this week to below 20°C (if you don’t know, that’s really cold) and it’s only going downhill. Queue Topman‘s recent collaboration with British luxury knitwear designer James Long. The capsule collection of quirky jumpers and cardigan is available now online and soon to hit select Topman stores in Canada (The Queen St. store in Toronto is expected to receive within the next couple of weeks, hopefully while I’m in town). I’m leaning towards the honeycomb jumper or the textured jumper. The textured has a Céline-esque feel to it with the two-tone colour block and fuzzy texture on the front, but the honeycomb looks better on the model in the campaign (see below). Hopefully they’ll arrive to Toronto stores in time for my visit – I prefer to try things on. Whether or not you do, check out the collection readily available on Topman’s online shop. Run, don’t walk.

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NARCISO RODRIGUEZ SS13 – PERSONAL BEST

One word: Perfection. The casting, the soundtrack, the venue, and most importantly the clothes, Narciso Rodriguez came correct, brought it home and delivered one of his and the seasons best collections.

Casting Director Jennifer Starr opted for a well-balanced mix of buzzed-about new faces (Ji Hye Park @ELITE, Irina Kravchenko @FORD, and Kelly Gale @DNA), rising stars (Maria Bradley @DNA, Marie Piovesan @MARILYN, and Marte Mei Van Haaster @IMG) and the estblished (Kinga Rajzak @IMG, Kati Nescher @DNA, and Julia Nobis @FORD). You could tell the girls felt the music as they strut confidently to an aggressive and gritty soundtrack consisting of “Wut” and “Yup” by rapper Le1f, which contrasted nicely with the uber posh simplicity and refreshing nature of the clothes. The “simple but effective” angle ran rampant throughout every exit, from layered pantsuits, sexy sheath and sexier slip dresses, to beautifully embroidered tees and muscle shirts – it all just felt so easy. I’d be more than satisfied if every woman dressed like this day to day, or at least took cues. The oversized two-tone clutches were divine, coupled with those sickening wedge sandals.. hurt me. Let’s not forget that delicious colour palette… #chictothenextlev. I could go on, but why not just see for yourselves:

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FICTION OR FOR REAL: CHRISTOPHER KANE TO HELM BALENCIAGA

Here we go again. Rumours have rapidly been swirling that Christopher Kane will takeover the helm as Creative Director at Balenciaga, but French Grazia recently claimed that Balenciaga denied the rumoured nomination (Stylebistro needs a new translator as they garnered Kane’s appointment was confirmed by French media). Sigh.

2012 has been THE year of fashion musical chairs, and I’m tired. Sure, it’s something to write about and fashion isn’t anything nowadays without hype and buzz, but I’ll wait for PPR to make the call. John, Marc, Raf, Hedi, Stefano, and now Chris… I need a drink.

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__LEBIGT ON INSTAGRAM, FINALLY

This is hardly news, but I’ve joined the Instagram movement due to my recent acquisition of an iPhone 4S (took me long enough – sigh); Blackberry, it’s been real. So, follow me: __lebigt (2 underscores) (http://instagram.com/__lebigt) and get a more candid view of  what’s on my mind/what I do, day to day. x

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LANVIN FW12 – DON’T FUCK WITH THE PHOTOGS

Or, you get heckled, aggressively. Following Alber Elbaz‘s 10th anniversary collection for Lanvin last week in Paris, his finale bow took the form of a few words and a song (a snippet of Que Sera, Sera), on a stage which opened up behind the runway backdrop post models clearing the runway. The show goer who shakily lensed this video was amongst the roaring audience and close enough to the photographer’s pit to capture the madness. Starting from 10:00 (below), you can hear the photographer’s wrath, “asking” people to sit down, as their lenses were obstructed. First in French, “Assirent! Assirent!“, then in English, “Sit down! Sit down!!” (how thoughtful), and even throwing in a “please”, which leads into a collective chant (back to French) – they have each other’s back. Keeping in mind these are the people who shoot the archival images I revel in on the daily, I would’ve sat the fuck down.

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MISDEMEANOR MONDAY #4

You’ll have to excuse my absence last Monday as I was out of town for work! #T’s (and Missy, of course), I will surely make it up to you. But, let’s not dwell in the past – it’s the 4th installment of MISDEMEANOR MONDAY! I love watching old talk show segments of my favourite celebs (guilty pleasure). Any clip of Don Rickles on The Late Show avec Letterman is absolute gold and gets me every time. This weekend, I found this vintage segment of the Misdemeanor, rocking a divine olive green Adidas (who else) track jacket and matching cargos, on Ellen back in 2004, before she (Ellen) had a stylist. Missy’s swagger is infectious, along with her humility and sweet smile. It wouldn’t be The Ellen Degeneres show if dancing wasn’t involved, so Missy gives Ellen a 1-on-1 tutorial on how to Work It


SPOTTED: GRACE MAHARY AT GIVENCHY FW12

Canadian beauty [yeah, that's right - representing] Grace Mahary was the 3rd exit out during the highly-anticipated Givenchy FW12 show in Paris last night. Signed with WM Paris and Elmer Olsen MM in Toronto (mother agent), this was her runway debut in the high fashion circuit, and what a debut it was; a Givenchy exclusive. As part of a diverse cast of coloured beauties, including Daniela Braga (Next NY), Grace Bol (WM Paris), Ajak Deng (IMG), Joan Smalls (IMG), and Cora Emmanuel (Ford), Grace’s uniquely Eritrean features (those eyes) stood apart from the rest. Exclusives, especially those of the Givenchy nature, only mean one thing: watch out for her. This is a prime example of what Canadian soil can do. Check out her darling video after the jump.

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NOW PLAYING: TOBACCO – DIRT (FEAT. AESOP ROCK)

This track called “Dirt” by Tobacco from his 2008 album Fucked Up Friends, has been on repeat throughout my entire weekend – I’ve yet to stop bouncing. The first time I heard this deliciously gritty beat was a snippet from Prada‘s SS12 women’s ad campaign video (see below), who’s playlist was most likely coordinated by the brilliant Frederic Sanchez (he produces all of Prada’s runway soundtracks along with several other labels). Thanks to Korey Lartigue (@korewhore) and his phenomenal runway music blog, which had the playlist outlined, I managed to find the full-length song. The head-bouncing hip-hop beat combined with electronic synthesizers feels retro and modern both at once. I’ll turn off the repeat function when I feel like it. Also, Aesop Rock is featured on the track. Enjoy.

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MARNI X H&M – THE TWO-TONE IS MINE

None of the VersacexH&M pieces made it into my closet as hideous, tickity garb is not welcome within those confines. This beautifully simple two-tone leather shopper from the Marni for H&M men’s collection, released on Thursday March 8th in Canada, will surely be joining the ranks (if my main #T @andrewcoimbra has time to cop one for me). Considering it’s made of real leather, the 79,99EU (approx. $104CAN) price tag is apropos and very doable. My current sac has adopted frayed edges and faded colour which is cramping my style [yeah, I said it], aka time for this #chictothenextlev replacement.

The rest of the men’s collection didn’t really speak to me, apart from this lovely two-tone tie (what’s with me and two-toned accessories?) which I may throw into my basket as well.

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BALENCIAGA FW12 – COLOUR IN CASTING

Despite donning the most colour-infused looks of the collection, Jeneil Williams (at Nathalie) and Liu Wen (at Marilyn) represented all the colour for their counterparts during the Balenciaga FW12 show, being the only two girls of colour to walk in the sky high office space. A trend I’ve noticed, specifically with Ashley Brokaw, top casting director who’s clients include Balenciaga, Prada, Proenza Schouler, Tommy Hilfiger, and Rag&Bone, is that her casting for Balenciaga is limited to one black girl, who changes every season, and the invariable Asian girl, Liu Wen, for the girls of colour – that’s it. The rest, a vanilla sea mixed with newcomers and the established. See for yourself:

FW12 – Jeneil Williams | Liu Wen

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ANTHONY VACCARELLO FW12 – I’M SEXY AND I KNOW IT

One would have to be (AND know it) in order to rock these clothes, as they are certainly not for the faint of heart (or for anyone not bearing the measurements of a supermodel). Anthony Vaccarello certainly made a splash last season, with his sexy (major understatement) leg-baring designs landing coveted print and red carpet spots (Anne V in this SS12 look at the 2012 Grammy Awards (below left), and Gwyneth Paltrow covering the March 2012 issue Harper’s Bazaar in this show-closing number from last season (below right)). For FW12, legs were still in abundance with plenty to spare, as were single bare arms with a covered/tailored significant other. Tailoring (the main message in this collection) could have been better executed (twas almost premature for him to venture into the craft so soon), but thankfully it failed to take away from the ooze of quintessential Vaccarello sex appeal, which is what we come for.

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MISDEMEANOR MONDAY #3

Round #3! Welcome to the third installment of MISDEMEANOR MONDAY. The news of Missy’s official return made us all a tad giddy (if it didn’t/hasn’t yet, please seek some  professional help), but things were turned up a notch when Busta Ryhmes released the remix to his deliciously hard track, “Why Stop Now“, featuring none other than the Misdemeanor (Weezy and CBreezy, too). Busta’s first up to spit (and slays), to which he then introduces Missy: ” Hey, lemme re-introduce y’all to my beautiful twin… omg… MISSY!” – amazing. Needless to say she KILLS her verse, and let’s us know during her opening when she says “Now watch how I kill this remix”. So, yeah, she’s baaa-aaack.

View past installements:

MISDEMEANOR MONDAY #2

MISDEMEANOR MONDAY #1

PREEN FW12 – SPRING IS IN THE AIR (NIPPLES TOO)

Justin Thornton and Thea Bregazzi, design duo behind Preen, must have gotten their feet stuck in September as their FW12 offerings reeked of springtime clichés, mostly during the first half of the show; fern and apple greens, sharp orange-reds, snow whites galore, botanical floral fusions, and abstract butterfly motifs (their Pre-Fall collection read better for the fall season than these first 18 exits). Despite the undeniable beauty and freshness they evoked (g-r-eat colour blocking), there was a total disconnect leading into the second half of the collection.

The procession continued and eventually dove into looks that translated into what we deem Continue reading

MISDEMEANOR MONDAY #2

Pardon the late post! Longest day… of my life. I leave next week, so my plate is full of things to get done prior. Anyways, I digress; it’s Monday aka #MISDEMEANORMONDAY, #2! If you failed to read the first installment, I’ll be dedicating a post to Missy Elliot every Monday until her highly-anticipated 7th studio album, Block Party, drops in the spring/summer. As the Grammy Awards were last night, it’s only fitting that we relish in Missy’s 5 Grammy Award-winning tracks, including the following:

  • 2002, Best Pop Collaboration with Vocals: “Lady Marmalade” (Producer)
  • 2002, Best Rap Solo Performance: “Get Ur Freak On
  • 2003, Best Female Rap Solo Performance: “Scream a.k.a. Itchin” 
  • 2004, Best Female Rap Solo Performance: “Work It” 
  • 2006, Best Short Form Video: “Lose Control

MISDEMEANOR MONDAY #1

What a night; heavy lip-syncing (I don’t blame her), superstar backup dancers (Nicki + M.I.A.), custom Givenchy x3 (the heart strings were tugged, and damaged), and a sequined homage to André Leon Talley (C-Lo). The  Madonna Bowl was pretty spectacular; so spectacular that it managed to crash the Twitter app on my Blackberry – not surprised:

Cray. I’d add a sister “cray” to that, had the Misdemeanor been performing alongside the Material Girl. Yes, Missy “Misdemeanor” Elliott – you remember her, right? Would’ve made total marketing sense too, since A. She and Madonna do make a hell of a team (see past GAP commercial below) and B. her 7th studio album, entitled Block Party and produced primarily by Timbaland, is apparently set to release this spring (or summer). Surprisingly, I hadn’t heard a a whisper about it until I randomly Wikipedia’d her after listening to a slew of throwback tracks, including Supa Dupa Fly (below), Beep Me 911, and Sock It 2 Me. Fuck, she’s such a boss and I’ve been listening to/watching her since she made a garbage bag look “supa dupa fly” in ’97, which is why I’m starting Misdemeanor Mondays on LEBIGT BLOG. I’ll be posting something Missy related (mostly songs/videos) every Monday  until the day Block Party drops. Missy, hurry back to the forefront and don’t forget the PVC.

COFFEE DATE WITH RAF SIMONS – WE’RE TIGHT LIKE THAT

Because I’m a very good friend of Raf Simons, we went for coffee the day after he presented his eponymous FW12 collection in Paris two weeks ago. Unfortunately, I was unable to attend the show for reasons I cannot disclose. I won’t go into details from our conversation (to respect his privacy), but he had 3 things to say about his collection (which we scrolled through on his iPad via the style.com app):

1. Culla. In a sea of black and muted neutrals, stand the fuck out somehow.

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PRADA BLACK – BIG AMBITION FOR COREY BAPTISTE

It it so refreshing to see a model, 2 years in the game, be so aware and realistic about his goals in the industry. Kudos to VNY Model Management and their management of rising star Corey Baptiste, who explains to Vogue Black Editor-at-Large, and legendary model/agent/acitvist Bethann Hardison, that it takes patience, motivation, and confidence for one to make it and stay sane in this volatile business. The past face of DKNY, Benetton, and Kenzo, Corey expresses his hopes for a black man to walk for Prada, whether it be him or his rival/friend David Agbodji, and open the door for other black male models, who don’t get much attention in the European markets. He wants those “big name” designers to say “they can obviously do it”, which I find incredibly ambitious, and timely, as the emergence of colored models in the blue chip arena these days is steadily on the rise. So young, so smart, so grounded, and so beautiful; he’s a boy from the Bronx who wants to change the game, give back, and make his momma proud.

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EYEWEAR IS THE GATEWAY TO THE SOUL – FW12

Oh sunnies, how I do adore thee. The eyewear offerings this FW12 season came in a slew of shapes, finishes, and contexts, representative of each collection and, ultimately, the man wearing them. The classic aviator shape ran rampant throughout, naturally, but were pushed and played with in the better collections. In the way of lenses, we saw gradient (1,4), mirror (4),  solid (3), and clear (5, 6). Speaking of pushing and being playful, Kris Van Assche (5) channeled geek-chic by adding splash guards on the temples of his clear frames, which resembled safety goggles and fit seamlessly with the tone of his collection.

  1. Gucci
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