Sunday 10 July 2011

    Daphne Guinness + her diamond glove armour

     

    Contra Mundum ~ Latin for “Against the World” is a 5 year bespoke ‘glove’ project. A magnificent diamond glove by the creative spirit of a fashion icon and jewellery designer.

    Over five years, Daphne Guinness in collaboration with Shaun Leane, created a white gold and platinum glove, studded with over 5,000 pavé white diamonds, set in the shape of a bird formation, and weighing over a thousand grams in 18ct white gold.

    The Glove :: A diamond set armour-inspired piece

    Striking diamond birds cascade around the arm, as though caught in mid-flight.

    The hand is protected with a bold metal cuff, hand-forged and beautifully engraved.

    Made in two parts, the cuff can be worn alone as a hand glove, or extended into an evening glove. Every detail in the piece, including the chainmail, has been carefully constructed by hand to ensure a perfect fit to Daphne’s arm. The glove was molded from Guinness’ own hand, and is a stylized armour made of precious metals, studded with gems.Delicate chainmail forms the foundation of this highly fantastical gauntlet; each ring looped in one by one to create an exact formation tailored to the individual. Striking diamond birds cascade around the arm, as though caught in mid-flight. Skilfully supporting the framework is a shimmering diamond branch that elegantly wraps around the upper arm. The hand is protected with a bold metal cuff, hand-forged and beautifully engraved. Birds are layered on the surface of the cuff amongst the sculpted branches. Carved in gold and set with diamonds, they soar among the delicate engraving as though liberated by the blowing wind. Made in two parts, the cuff can be worn alone as a hand glove, or extended into an evening glove. {Fashion Telegraph}

    Five people worked on this piece, including Shaun – each craftsman was handpicked according to their fields of expertise. So it meant that, for example, the stone setter picked would have to hand set all of the 5000 pave diamonds. One craftsman looped each jump-ring by hand, one by one, to ensure a perfect fit to Daphne’s arm – this process has taken over half of the 5 years. {Fashion Telegraph}

    Jay Jopling hosted an intimate evening in celebration of the completion of ‘Contra Mundum’ at White Cube Gallery. The exclusive launch was attended by Tom Ford, Suzy Menkes, Lily Cole, Livia Firth and Alexander McQueen’s Creative Director Sarah Burton.

    Guests watched Daphne’s beautiful presentation of the piece

    ~ dressed in the bespoke glove and shrouded in white silk tulle, her lie-in state as her gloved hand lay over the tulle and rested on her upper-body and symbolised the concept of the objet d’art;

    Sir Thomas Malory’s compilation of the legendary tales of the Knights of the Round Table.

    As the evening drew to a close, guests were presented with a gift bag containing a solitaire diamond and a beautiful message signed by Shaun and Daphne as a remembrance of a beautiful summer evening. PR Web

    Daphne Guinness was “laid in state” by Gareth Pugh to celebrate her collaboration with British jeweler, Shaun Leane. Daphne is no stranger to theatrical installations, but she outdid herself this time. In typical Guinness fashion she was laid out in a sheer Alexander McQueen bodysuit with an antique veil. The only exposed body part was her arm in a one-of-a-kind chain mail glove made of gold and diamonds.

    This piece is for sale for 1.7 million dollars and is made of 18-carat white gold.

    The background story {Fashion Telegraph}

    In recent years, Guinness has developed a fascination with armour, and it was while she was out one night with McQueen and Leane that she decided to create some of her own.

    ‘We were at one of those enormous events where we were huddled in a corner going, “What are we doing here?” Anyway, I said, “Wouldn’t it be great to have some armour?” And so Shaun said, “All right, then.” And two or three weeks later, there I was, with my arm in a bucket.’

    Once a cast had been taken of her arm, it took four years and many fittings to create the glove they have just completed. It started out as a straightforward commission, a bespoke piece of silver jewellery that Leane would create to fit Guinness’s arm exactly. But silver turned out to be too soft so they went for white gold, and as they added more and more to the piece – chain mail handmade to fit her arm completely, intricate articulated fingers, more than 5,000 diamonds creating decorative birds along the arm – it became a collaboration, funded and owned jointly by the two of them. Now that it is complete, it will be exhibited, then offered for sale.

    For them it has become less a fashion item, more a work of art, something that pushes the boundaries of fine jewellery and symbolises their friendships with each other, and with Blow and McQueen, who was to design a spectacular dress to go with the glove. They have called it Contra Mundum: ‘It’s sort of us against the world. It’s about wanting to watch, but not wanting to be seen. I feel it’s a pact, if that makes any sense. And I’m not sure I could wear it to go out now, because it means too much.’

    {Images 1. & 9. Photographer Nick Knight; 2-4 via Fashion Telegraph; 6-8 via Vitalic Noise}

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    Sunday 10 July 2011

    red, red, red!

     

    IncREDible ~ I see red in honour of the wonderful Queensland Reds Super Rugby grand final win against the Crusaders. I rugged up on a cold winter night at Suncorp stadium to cheer the Reds to victory!

    {Images Reese Witherspoon by Mario Testino; ladies in waiting by paolo roversi for w oct 2004}

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    Saturday 9 July 2011

    take me to Tuscany

     

    Life’s simplest pleasures ~ wonderful food, hikes in the hills, massage from a master ~

    take me to spa Castello di Vicarello

    a medieval castello in the clouds, hidden in the hilltop olive groves of Maremma.

    I’m dreaming that I’m Lara Stone! (pictured here for Vogue US)

    Castello di Vicarello has had 900 years to cultivate its air of mystery, so it’s no wonder that it can seem like a building stolen from a dream or a fairy tale. This rustic-luxe boutique hotel where everything is cultivated using traditional methods :: authentic home-cooked, Tuscan cuisine straight from a traditional farmhouse kitchen using organic ingredients :: join the conversation in the kitchen, and experience the flavours and maybe a few secrets of Italian cooking :: a stroll in the working vineyard and olive grove :: go hunting :: an afternoon at the spa.

    Beautifully decorated with antiques and modern furnishings, this hotel has seven luxury and unique suites. Choose from a suite that overlooks the castle courtyard, paved with ancient stones, or a room in one of the outbuildings that is surrounded by white roses, lavender and ancient olive trees.

    {Images: Lara Stone by Mario Testino for Vogue US January 2011 via Fashion Gone Rogue; castle pics via Haute Design}

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    Saturday 9 July 2011

    facade beauty

     

    I adore old building facades with intricate design details ~ they are works of art and beauty.

    {Images via pinterest: Kathy Hackman Hutchison}

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    Thursday 7 July 2011

    Happily Ever After :: Anne Hathaway

     

    A simply luxurious life ~ Anne Hathaway gets caught up in a modern day fairy tale in Paris. She was photographed in iconic locations like the Crillon (she caused a major stir getting out of an antique car) and Maxim’s.

    Once upon a time, in 1996, Anne Hathaway spent her fourteenth birthday behind the footlights at the Paper Mill Playhouse in her hometown of Millburn, New Jersey, where she was appearing in a stage version of Gigi, the 1958 movie musical that starred Leslie Caron as a little girl who grows up in the most delightful way. But Hathaway wasn’t playing the title role—she was just a kid in the chorus—and throughout the famous scene at Maxim’s, where Gigi makes her entrance as a woman, she had to sit with her back to the audience, hidden behind a prop.

    Now, on a June afternoon in Paris, Hathaway finds herself front and center in the Art Nouveau dining room of the real Maxim’s for a Vogue cover shoot. Looking like a cross between Caron and Audrey Hepburn, Hathaway has spent the past two days gamely flitting about Paris wearing a series of dazzling creations and a staggering amount of diamonds. Here at Maxim’s, she stands in front of the camera in an embroidered Miu Miu top, her hair swept up into a lofty French twist. When she jokes with the crew (“It’s Holly Golightly meets Marge Simpson”), the photographer, Mario Testino, says, “Anne—less talking, more beauty.” Taking his cue, she gazes at the horizon with gentle melancholy, prompting him to say, “Just like that, just like that. Oh, darling, you’re perfect.”

    “It was true glamour,” Hathaway says later. “Not just the clothes and the jewels but that feeling that glamour can produce in you, which is like a dream.” We are on our way to the Gare du Nord to catch a train to London, where she’s about to start filming the romantic comedy One Day, directed by An Education’s Lone Scherfig. But first the actress decides to pop into Hermès, on Rue du Faubourg St.-Honoré. “I’ve never seen a Kelly bag or a Birkin bag in person,” she tells me, “and at my age, it’s about time.” As she strolls through the store, wearing blue patent leather Sonia Rykiel flats, a flouncy Zara skirt, and a short-sleeved Lanvin T-shirt with a pink silk rose on the shoulder that on her somehow look all-American, shoppers and clerks look up, their soigné indifference giving way to wide grins and low murmurs of “C’est Anne ’Atta-way!” It could be a scene from a sequel to The Princess Diaries, the 2001 cinematic fairy tale that transformed Hathaway, at eighteen, from an aspiring ingenue into Hollywood royalty.

    Moments later, a salesman who, if this actually were one of the Princess movies, would be played by Hector Elizondo, oversees the arrival of a stack of boxes bearing the coveted items in various sizes, colors, and skins. First up: a small brown leather Kelly whose clean, classic lines exemplify the 1950s American glamour of its namesake. Hathaway oohs and aahs with appropriate reverence. But it’s the oversize Birkin, with its hippie-chic quality (and heart-stopping price tag), that really makes her gasp. “It’s Heaven,” she says.

    If what we wear is an expression of who we are, then Hathaway is still exploring—mixing young, bohemian looks with vintage classics. Labels she likes range from 3.1 Phillip Lim, Rag & Bone, and If Six Was Nine to Céline and Isabel Marant. (She is also obsessed with Freddies of Pinewood, whose retro denim she describes as “my new magic jeans, sort of Marilyn Monroe in her off hours.”) With a bag in each hand, Hathaway steps in front of a mirror, studying herself as she turns from side to side. “I think the Birkin would suit me more,” she pronounces. “As gorgeous as the Kelly is, I think it’s something that you mature into.”

    “You are young,” the salesman says.

    Photographer Mario Testino and stylist Tonne Goodman cast Anne Hathaway in the center of a fairy tale for the cover feature of the November 2010 issue of Vogue.

    {Images via rdujour, text source Vogue}

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    Tuesday 5 July 2011

    Monaco Royal Wedding | Charlene Wittstock & Prince Albert

     

    Princess Charlene looked stunning in a gorgeous, off-the-shoulder Giorgio Armani Privé bridal gown, with pearl and Swarovski crystal embellishment. Prince Albert II of Monaco, married Charlene Wittstock in a lavish ceremony. Petals snowed down on them, and looked so beautiful.

    The Giorgio Armani gown was cut from 130 metres of silk and studded with 40,000 crystals Swarovski crystals, 20,000 mother of pearl tear drops and 30,000 “stones in gold shades”. The Italian designer’s team took 2,500 hours to prepare the gown. For the embroidery, they took another 700 hours.

    Prince Albert II was dressed in the cream summer uniform of Monaco’s palace guards. Its sleeves were decorated with oak and olive leave and the front was glazed with monogrammed golden buttons. His chest was carrying medals representing the Order of Saint Charles, the Order of Grimaldi and France’s Legion of Honour, and a rosette at the top of his firm fabric cap was representing the Crown of Monaco.

    The wedding feast was held at the gala ball and reception at Opera Garnier, the opera house opposite the casino, a site of glamour, at which Princess Charlene wore another stunning off-white Armani outfit with a broad décolletage. This event included the cutting of a spectacular cake decorated with proteas, the South African national flower.

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    Tuesday 5 July 2011

    attic fantastic 2

     

    I’m dreaming of turning my roof into an attic space.

    {Image via shempii}

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    Monday 4 July 2011

    softly pink

     

    Monday, Monday and it’s the beginning of a new week, full of possibilities…

    {Images via simply seductive}

     

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    Sunday 3 July 2011

    more mario

     

    In my dream I am the girl wearing the white dress in big drawing room.

    Lara Stone by Mario Testino for Vogue US January 2011

    {Images via Fashion Gone Rogue}

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    Sunday 3 July 2011

    Diana, Princess of Wales

     

    Princess Diana, photographed by Patrick Demarchelier

    A photograph by Patrick Demarchelier of Princess Diana, published in the July 2007 issue of Vanity Fair.

    French photographer Patrick Demarchelier was the first non-British photographer to click the British Royal Family.  In 1989 Patrick Demarchelier became, by request, Her Royal Highness Princess Diana’s official photographer. This relationship lasted until her untimely death in 1997. Patrick Demarchelier shot four beautiful covers of Diana for the British Vogue published in 1991, 1994 and 1997.

    These natural and beautiful Christmas 1994 snaps of Diana with William and Harry. The young Princes are enjoying her company and she’s showing such affection towards them capturing the delight and love she had for them.

    {Images Princess Diana by Patrick Demarchelier; Princess Diana with her sons are unknown.}

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