Tuesday, 31 January 2012

Putting A Guard Up: Big Name, Little Reward

For a while now I have been surrendering myself to the lowly realms of unpaid internships. Now, as much as people argue the case for abolishing what is essentially free labour, the concept of the free fashion (or near enough any creative or media related) skivvy isn't going anywhere. Unfair? Perhaps. But the idea and "reasoning" for many outlets and companies, particularly the larger and more competitive, behind the concept of the unpaid internship is that this is a way for you to demonstrate your passion and undying enthusiasm for the product, brand or trade so to speak. So here I am, once again offering myself up the media Gods for mundane jobs and non existent wages all in the name of proving my worth.

Well... in theory.

In sum, I have been hankering after a newspaper to add to my CV list of media conquests having already now experienced working life in glossy, PR and online. Therefore, I'm pretty pleased to be writing this post from The Guardian HQ. A paper founded in 1821 and known for its impressive international multimedia presence, surely this is the place to be tested; to be put through my paces so I can acquire the skills and experience necessary to succeed within this hilariously cut-throat industry and impress my future employers? I don't hold much hope other than on paper. The name in itself may well impress but as to whether I'm learning anything that goes beyond my own common sense is somewhat doubtful. However, that is not to say I'm not enjoying myself and by environment alone I can cement my ambitions on this being the career for me.

Yesterday, my first day, involved two tasks. My first task involved the weekend papers, a keen eye and a pair of scissors. Nothing life changing but a required task I had no objection in undertaking. For the afternoon's festivities, I locked myself in a messy cupboard, whacked on a combination of Bruce Springsteen's greatest hits and mundane pop and got on with bagging and addressing marvelously expensive things. And then putting them on my head. Day over. Today? Even less productive thus far with the agenda including 15 minutes sorting post and 10 minutes flicking through and filing some look books. Then "just go on the computer for a bit" which, in layman's terms, equates to 2 and half hours. This is not out of the ordinary for many but for me, I've never experienced such a laid back attitude especially in comparison to my last placement at Fashion156 where, in those long and intense hours, I was trained up to a high level in all things essential. In hindsight, I very much did a job without getting any wages. A little mean perhaps but then again, I took something away from it and left in the knowledge that I was "a perfect representative for the company". My role was fashion assistant and writer, not intern, and to this day I still receive enquiries, lookbooks and CVs from people I previously connected with. As hellish as that internship was at (most) times, it was a "no pain, no gain" situation. Here, there is definitely no pain but my prospects of gain seem minimal.

However, after I've eaten my salmon ands couscous (I can at least act the part) I'm going to force this place into giving me work if only to save myself the £178 worth of clothing sitting in my online basket. Research, perhaps? A few more returns, even? G'wan - this labour is free afterall.

Hello Victoria Beckham sunglassess...
My fashion cupboard hideway.

Until I'm made to do something...
C. x

Wednesday, 25 January 2012

Black, White and Karl all over: Karl Lagerfeld for NET-A-PORTER Launch

As I write this, the man brandishing a ponytail even more iconic than Peter Stringfellow's is gracing the streets of Paris for a live appearance at the now twitter-infamous cube for the launch of 'Karl', the 'affordable' collection by Karl Lagerfeld. I, on the other hand, am firmly based in my bedroom in the countryside and have opted (/had no other choice but) to take a more digital approach to the array of covetable classics with a directional twist.

Now, I won't lie - I'm a fan of the garish. But saying that, Karl's expected monochrome ensembles are classically cool. From LBDs to biker vests and embellished collars that would not look out of place on the icon himself. In a word the collection is, quite simply, Karl. Sleek, simple yet effortless strong; it is a collection that embodies that man who created it, even quite literally as his silouette adorns totes, canvas shoppers and even a PVC sleeved sweater.

As my staple 'bin bag' leggings suggest, I'm a big fan of the black and shiny so PVC sleeves and hooded tops combined with faux leather trousers are a big win with me. However, with some items heavily featuring silver and black sequins, has Net-A-Porter missed a trick by releasing the debut as the party season comes to a close?

As a whole, the collection is brilliantly self involved and that's probably why most people will scramble over themselves to get a piece. There are very few people who can get away with purposefully selling racer vests and tshirts with their own image on it without simply screaming egomaniac. Yet here he is, Karl Lagerfeld, posing and dancing across the torsos of  the masses clearly not giving a shit about any of that. He's an icon -the public know it and, most of all, so does he.

Until the next.
C. x

Friday, 13 January 2012

Born Sleepy: J.W Anderson AW12 Menswear Preview

Now it's not often that I do this but I felt that this was something really worth mentioning.

With designers ready to take to the Milan catwalks in T-24 hours , it's hard to avoid the bombardment of anticipated previews and spectacular campaigns. Whilst everybody wets themselves over the arrival of Mulberry's Brighton Rock campaign, which I will admit is somewhat delicious, it has to be J W Anderson who's really caught my attention in one of the most unusual ways possible.

The bold graphic signature for which womenswear is reknowned has been effortlessly translated for the boys as can be seen in the AW12 offering. You could say it's just a smidge different to classic tuxedo combinations mentioned in my last postbut that's J W Anderson all over.

With a haircut to rival Davy Jones, it's hard not to take notice of this almost 60s inspired yet radically modern collection. And whilst I'll be the first to accept that a ankle skimming flares and quilted white bucket-like hats aren't for everyone, it's exciting to see such experimentation. Flares are well on their way to making a comeback in womenswear so who says the men aren't about to follow suit? I have a friend who will be over the moon to hear this news.

High necks and bold collars are there to inspire small changes for the Spring whilst the brown tracksuit is wrong but oh so right despite it's complete unwearability.

And no, I hadn't completely missed the eyes rolled back in the head. Is it a metaphorical nod to the collection's 'roll back' to the yester-years? Probably not, no, but it sure as hell gives a certain edge to the model's femininity and hold's your attention doesnt it. After all, we can't be looking too pretty can we?

Images: Models

Photography: Alex Sainsbury
Styling: Benjamin Bruno
Model: Oliver Greenall at Elite London
Grooming: Hiroshi Matsushita using Bumble and Bumble
Photography assistance: Hugo Yanguella

 C. x