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Is This The Right Way For Fashion To Do Cultural Appropriation

Le 6 novembre 2015, 07:21 dans Humeurs 0


Halloween season just ended, and brought with it the attendant high times for the cultural appropriation wars.


It will be easy enough to let these questions slip until next October. But really, cultural appropriation is a year-round hustle, and nowhere more so than in the fashion world.


The fashion industry's breakneck pace of innovation has always prompted designers to incorporate other cultures' distinctive looks to stay fresh. Just think of Paul Poiret's harem pants and tunics in the 1910s, Yves Saint Laurent's beaded and feathered "African collection" in 1967, or Hermes' stylized Indian saris and jodhpurs in 2007.


The line between inspiration and appropriation is blurry, however, and easily veers, even in 2015, into shockingly tasteless territory. Like in Valentino's most recent "Africa-inspired" show, where, as Fashionista pointed out, the mostly-white models all sported cornrows, apparently without irony. Cringe.


In light of blunders like these, it seems like the only safe option might be to send out models every season in blue jeans and sneakers.

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But there may be a better way to respectfully use other cultures' designs, and Oskar Metsavaht, founder and creative director of the Brazilian sportswear label Osklen, is leading the pack.


Osklen's spring 2016 collection, which showed earlier this month in New York and Sao Paulo, was inspired by the designs of the Asháninka, an indigenous people who live in the Brazilian and Peruvian rainforest. In return for permission to adapt their tattoos and traditional fabrics, Osklen paid the tribe. With that money, the Asháninka have been able to make various improvements, including building a school.


Metsavaht is also working to publicize the Asháninka's fight against illegal loggers and environmental degradation of their native forest. An 18-minute documentary about daily life in the Ashaninka community, directed by Metsavaht (who moonlights as a photographer and musician), is streaming on the Osklen website. And the collection itself is called Ashaninka. You can buy a T-shirt emblazoned with its name.


If this completism seems remarkable, it is, but it is also totally in character for Metsavaht, one of the first designers in the world to produce sustainable fashion. It was in his native Brazil, where countries first convened in 1992 and coined the term "sustainable development," at the UN Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro. His 2012 collection, called A21, was inspired by the "successes and failures" of that Summit's Agenda 21, as Metsavaht told VICE.


Metsavaht's cerebral design process often comes about in this way, blossoming from a trip, idea or concept. He began his career as a doctor, created a winter sportswear line in 1990, and shifted to luxury fashion in 2000. He was dubbed "Brazil's first global luxury brand" by Forbes in 2012 and is a UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador. He also runs an art gallery and Instituto-E, a non-profit that encourages sustainable human development through projects like developing environmentally friendly fabrics.


I spoke to the polymath about his unique take on cultural exchange and how to make eco-fashion cool.

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Gina Rinehart's son choppers into The Birdcage

Le 4 novembre 2015, 03:29 dans Humeurs 0

Gina Rinehart's son choppers into The Birdcage as Sam Frost debuts Sasha

The sun is shining but not quite as bright as some of the celebrity talent which have started to file into The Birdcage marquees at Flemington for this year's Melbourne Cup.

Among the "big name" celebrities at the Cup was Lady Kitty Spencer, the niece of the late Princess Diana, first cousin of Princes William and Harry and billed as London's "most eligible" bachelorette by society tome Tatler on the cover of its latest edition.

PS had joined a long queue of reporters to interview Lady Spencer, who had been preened and polished with suitably regal splendour for her debut at the Spring Racing Carnival.

But that's all we were able to get.

When PS, who had admittedly been Googling her name in the minutes before our chat in a vain attempt to find out why the pretty blonde 24-year-old was newsworthy, dared to ask about her impressive family lineage questions were quickly shut down.

"No, no, no ... no personal questions," PS was informed after asking if her aristocratic breeding was a burden.

Needless to say the interview was probably the shortest one on the track, quite frankly there was little else to ask.

Backing up for their second turn in The Birdcage this year was Foreign Minister Julie Bishop and David Panton, Bishop opting for a racy fitted black cocktail dress and flying saucer hat as the pair worked the marquees.Chris Judd and Rebecca Judd.

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Francesca Packer and her new boyfriend Kelli Holland were working the marquees again, the pair managing to upload their exploits on social media with aplomb.

The Bachelorette Sam Frost caused a commotion when she arrived at her marquee early, her beau Sasha Mielczarek firmly by her side as photographers scrambled to get shots of the new hot couple before their celebrity status goes cold.

It was Frost and her construction engineer beau's first official outing as a couple, though considering they had been photographed numerous times in the last fortnight their social debut seemed almost as orchestrated and unromantic as their televised courtship.

Similarly Lleyton Hewitt and his wife Bec arrived with quite a sizeable entourage into The Birdcage as they walked into the Swisse marquee where Hewitt is a paid ambassador of the brand.

In previous years the Hewitts have been one of the more interesting couples at the races, especially when Bec flaunted race wear rules and turned up wearing cocktail shorts.

This year she opted for a fitted day dress and looked suitably dressed for a day at the races.

A couple of freshly minted money bags have also turned up, including the Swisse boss Radek Sali who BRW last week reported was among the wealthiest young business people in the country debuting on its annual wealthy under 40s with a staggering $443 million after selling Swisse to Hong Kong listed company Biostime in September for $1.67 billion.

"I'm actually a pretty private person so that sort of attention is a little bit embarrassing but you know, I'm very proud of what we have created with Swisse," Sali declared.

By mid morning Gina Rinehart's son John Hancock and his wife Gemma had choppered into Flemington, having flown to Melbourne from Perth for the races on Monday.

"We have left the kids at home and my sister Bianca has our youngest one so it should be a fun day for us at the races," Hancock said, clearly impressed with the luxurious appointments in the Emirates marquee.

The Sunrise crew were out in force though one fashion faux pas was threatening to put a dampener on weather girl Edwina Bartholomew's day when she turned up in exactly the same dress as The Australian's fashion editor Glynis Traill-Nash

"It's Aurelio Costarella," chimed Traill-Nash, before Bartholomew added "and it's clearly off the rack".

The pair made the most of an awkward situation and posed for photos before quickly dispersing in the crowd, judiciously observing each other's orbit to avoid any further fashion collisions.

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Cheryl Fernandez-Versini flashes her abs in a nude crop top

Le 2 novembre 2015, 07:09 dans Humeurs 0

Cheryl Fernandez-Versini flashes her abs in a nude crop top while Rita Ora puts on a leggy display in a daring mini dress for first X Factor results show

The shock double elimination was a nerve-wracking experience for everyone involved.

But all eyes were on Rita Ora and Cheryl Fernandez-Versini’s fashion choices as they stepped onto the stage on Sunday evening for the action-packed results show.

The judges looked incredible in their wildly contrasting couture looks, with Rita, 24, opting to showcase her long legs in a dramatic mini dress and Cheryl, 32, flaunting her svelte figure in nude separates.

Cheryl opted for the most classic choice of the two, donning matching separates in a subtle beige shade.

The brunette beauty showcased her slender frame in her stomach-baring crop top and matching bandage pencil skirt.

Meanwhile, Rita gave her some serious style competition in the form of a daring black dress, making the most of her long legs thanks to its thigh-skimming hemline.

Wow: Little Mix whipped off their prom dresses to reveal spangled bodysuits with tassel detailing

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The striking number boasted a large ruffle running across the bust, embellished with glittering diamante detailing.

It was announced that two acts would be axed from the ITV competition in a shock twist, with the singer with the fewest number of public votes leaving with immediate effect.

Simon Cowell’s exuberant hopeful Bupsi Brown took the news on the chin when she was voted off first, leaving girl band Alien Uncovered and vocal powerhouse Kiera Weathers to battle it out in the Bottom Two sing-off.

Bupsi cheerfully told the crowd: 'It's been a great experience. I've had an amazing time and it's been a great opportunity to show myself and put myself out there. I hope you guys enjoyed my Bupsi magic!'

Alien Uncovered were the first to sing for survival and the six-piece were determined not to fall foul of the Groups' first week curse, putting on a lively performance.

Kiera then took the tempo down a notch with a powerful version of R.E.M’s Everybody Hurts, looking as though she fully expected to be sent packing.

Cheryl naturally opted to save her group, saying, ‘My loyalty and love is obviously with Alien Uncovered’, while Rita Ora stayed true to her act Kiera, declaring, ‘It’s only the start for Kiera, and there’s so much you can do.’

Nick Grimshaw said: ‘Those performances really changed my opinion. I loved that Keira, so I’m going to have to send Alien home.’

Show boss Simon Cowell was left with the deciding vote and took his time delivering his verdict – but embarrassingly got the girl band’s name wrong in the process.

‘I’m going to have to judge it on the sing off, there is an obvious person who was better tonight. Even though I’m unhappy with this decision, the artist I’m going to send home is Alien Nation', he declared.

The girls enthused, ‘It’s been an amazing experience. Thank you so much Cheryl for getting our swag. We will be back!’

The results show kicked off with a rousing rendition of new One Direction single Perfect courtesy of the 13 finalists, who include Wild Card Monica Michael.

Little Mix were also back on the stage that first made them a household name, making history in 2011 by becoming the first group to ever win the show.

The girls proved they definitely deserved the title by showcasing their amazing vocals as they belted out new single, Love Me Like You.

The fab four – Perrie Edwards, Jesy Nelson, Leigh-Anne Pinnock and Jade Thirlwall – brought their music video’s prom theme to life, donning pretty evening dresses for their performance.

The track seamlessly transitioned into Black Magic, the lead track from their upcoming third album, Get Weird.

Whipping off their tulle skirts and prom attire, the girls revealed skimpy leotards embellished with tassels as they bounded around the stage.

Perrie told the audience: 'It’s amazing. It makes us a bit nervous but it’s great to be back.’

The girls also dished the dirt on their favourite acts, revealing they were rooting for Anton Stephans and Louisa Johnson.

The calibre of guest performances for the first live show was as high as expected since Ellie Goulding was the next to take to the stage, singing her new track On My Mind.

Dancing around in front of an LED screen, Ellie put on a highly energetic display in a low-cut playsuit that showed off her shapely legs.

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