I have been bitten but the travel bug in 2015!!
Travel rules over fashion this year for me. There is a lot of fashion wisdom out there and following it can be a bit nerve wrecking! Sometimes keeping up with what’s really transitioning from the runways to the streets can be a daunting task. Also, I refuse to waste my time pondering over how I can display a thrilling demonstration of my fashion prowess amidst keen and informed readers of my blog and my extended social media diaspora – who seem already dazed and bewildered by the “too-much-information syndrome”!
I just believe fashion is cyclic and is also socially determined (as suggested by the economist George Taylor).”What goes around…comes around” and that pretty much sums up my understanding of fashion. Besides the fact that I reside in truly one of the most fashion-conscious cities of the world!
My love for London is a decade strong. London is home – a city where avant-garde laissez-faire carnival-isq fashion hedonism never stops. You can see abject simplicity to high-fashion complicity in every nook and corner of London ..no wonder, global fashion resides here. Speaking of greatness, I must mention YOO – YOO is a design company started by property entrepreneur John Hitchcox and designer Philippe Starck in the bespoke furniture, architectural, hotel and residential space creating unique interior design. I’m yet to explore YOO Home’s exclusive space in Harrods but I recently stumbled upon their design genius and luxuriously self-indulgent and imaginative creations while researching on furniture companies as I work with leading furniture companies across the globe as their talent partner.
Sightseeing to touristy landmarks in any place you are visiting is passé! I like indulging in activities that help me bond with the place culturally and collect awesome memories of my trip besides the souvenirs. Oh yes, vacationing isn’t also fun if shopping isn’t in the list of must-do activities but more than that its about checking out the unique characteristic of a city. European cities are almost identical but there is always something that stands out. And, I like exploring this very uniqueness.
From researching to traveling. I am now exploring neighbourhoods outside of UK. My trips are more concentrated on identifying local-bred brands that are worth my time, attention and money.
Amsterdam for instance is beyond Heineken, Canals, Cannabis, Coffee shops, Cycles and of course the famous red-light district.
The city is charming – another “C” in its illustrious character. However, my recent trip to Amsterdam was to checkout the Dutch brand :: Droog – a conceptual Dutch design company situated in Amsterdam, Netherlands Co-founded and directed by curator and author Renny Ramakers. Droog is more of an amalgamation of sorts between an art gallery, a design shop and an exhibition centre that showcases a mix of creations that are made with minimal means but design that is eclectic and at its best with extremely modern and sustainable components across a wide array of products from clothing, furniture, lighting to table and home-ware and accessories from independent designers. Droog shop is great, the cafe-restaurant even more.
I’m a fan of this place and the concept is chic-unique! Another place worth mentioning is the De Hallen Amsterdam – a centre for media, culture, fashion, food and crafts.
In the bustling streets hustled in Amsterdam’s famous ‘belt of canals’, De Hallen is a great place for expositions and you will invariably find some great stuff from food, cheese to clothing and fashion and home accessories . Visit http://dehallen-amsterdam.nl/ for full information on what’s on.
Paris – beyond the massive monumental columned arcades of the bygone centuries that merge effortlessly with the contemporary chic of French couture, Paris is more than just fashion, romance and shopping. Besides totally immersing myself at Musée du Louvre, walking along the Jardin des Tuileries and the avenue des Champs-Élysées, I visited Parc de la Villette this time around! It is located in the most unlikely of typical tourist route of Paris. La Villette is a cultural hotspot in Paris adjoining the City of Science and Industry. Checkout more details about what’s on here and if you plan to visit Paris anytime soon, this place is a must-see:: http://lavillette.com/en
If shopping is more like your thing, I would suggest visiting village La Vallée Village quite on the lines of UK’s famed Bicester Village.
From must-see to must-read, I have been reading about Bruce Jenner’s transition. Surprisingly, the thought about Bruce Jenner’s identity crisis never really crossed my mind until I read an insensitive comment on how Bruce Jenner resembles Sir James Paul McCartney in the Rihanna, Kanye West, and Paul McCartney’s “FourFiveSeconds” single collaboration.
Coming to the androgynous bit about future of fashion. There is a new wave of unisexual-ism where androgyny is becoming far more pronounced and acceptable than it has ever been. While women are happily donning men’s shirts (cutely termed “boyfriend shirts), pantsuits, blazers and even masculine silhouettes in all and sundry; men are embracing more soft and feminine flamboyant staples of modern fashion. Androgyny has touched all the facets of fashion – be it colors, styles, cuts, silhouettes and even fabrics.
It’s leading to “fashion unisexual-ism” that has a quintessential ease to it! Frankly, I was thinking about how the gender-bender gives a certain edgy, dearie dimension to what we understand of the business of fashion! I would be talking more about this in my future blog-posts. Talking about men and women like Andrej Pejic,Lea-T, Stav Strashko, Freja Beha, Casey Legler, Saskia de Brauw to name a few who have instrumental in setting benchmarks in breaking the molds of sexual duality and the gender nonconformity and bringing androgynous out into the mainstream fashion choices we make today.
Here is Me supporting a seemingly androgynous take on the little black Nikhil Thampi jacket::
Speaking of black and white, and variations on black and white were the obvious colors of choice to have ruled the fashion roost at the 57th Annual Grammy Awards. Madonna takes the cake in her burlesque outfit taking butt flashing to the next level. More later on this attention whoring strategy. I have a full blog-post dedicated to it!
There is lots to say and there is always some more stuff to share but its difficult to summarize what all is going in my mind and the countless scribbles I have done on my notepad take ages to decipher. Doing some major research on some cool start-ups in Retail-tech space with a special focus on Best-Of-British. Keep a look out on my future blog-posts on this subject. Until soon!
– Amit Anand