Monday, June 29, 2009

Thank You!

Hello all, and happy Monday! I have received a very special gift from the lovely Giovanna over at the beautifully ethereal and trendy, BOHO Market. She so graciously passed on the coveted One Lovely Blog Award and I am extremely grateful.

I am going to attempt the impossible, and pass this award on to some of the wonderful blogs that I follow. It's not quite 15 and I'm sure this action will be a duplicate for many of them, but I love my blogging buddies so much I just want them to know what I think of their wonderfully inspiring blogs!

So here's my list with links to their blogs:


Fatal Attraction 2 Fashion
Lady Melbourne
Swan of Dreamers
The Fashion Loving Stylist
Sharon Rose-Vintage, Fashion and Me
Dressed Up like a Lady
The Freelancer's Fashion Blog
Searching the Inner Me
Fashion is Protein
The High-Heel Diaries

Friday, June 26, 2009


Michael Jackson
Photo courtesy of Wikipedia

When I got the news that one of the world's greatest performers had passed, I was sitting in my living room, drawing one of my children's illustrations. My friend's son called me and asked if I had heard that Michael Jackson had died. Immediately I said no, I hadn't. My mind started reeling and I quickly convinced myself that this was some terrible hoax, perpetrated by a very sad and cruel nimrod who had nothing better to do. I began to repeat to myself "this can't be true, this can't be true." I simply couldn't wrap my brain around the thought of Michael Jackson being gone. Just last night (Wednesday) I had heard that he was preparing for another tour of 50 cities, and that he planned on working with a personal trainer to get in shape for the extensive itinerary.

Now he's gone. Just like that. The self-proclaimed King of Pop is no longer among his adoring fans, at least not physically. He'll forever live on in our memories, in spite of the strange and eccentric turn his life took in his later years. For me, he'll forever be that sweet, yet extremely talented kid who led his brothers to stardom and gave me my first taste of a real concert. I'll never forget being in the Olympia Stadium, on Grand River Ave in Detroit, with thousands of screaming teen-aged girls (that night I learned I could "holla" with the best of them). My poor mother endured a noise I'm sure she could never have imagined possible, as she watched me climb onto my chair and transform into this unrecognizable screaming banshee of a child.

Then there was the night Michael Jackson showed us how to walk on the moon without ever boarding a space ship (though he did transport us to another world). In one evening, he changed the course of entertainment and the face of fashion for future generations to come. During his magnificently memorable performance on Motown's 25 Anniversary Special, Michael convinced us that flooded pants were no longer dorky and that wearing a matching set of gloves was passe.

Yes, there's no doubt about it, Michael Jackson changed our lives forever. His creative genius remains unrivaled in the world of entertainment.

It's no secret that in recent years, Michael had experienced his own personal journey into the land of the strange and frightfully odd. There were many facets to the man in the mirror. Some may choose to dwell on the wildly eccentric Michael. I, on the other hand, choose to remember the monumentally talented Michael that brought joy and excitement to his fans around the world. He gave us a brand new dance, taught us that mediocrity was not an option, and caused many a fledgling entertainer to stretch him or herself beyond the normal perimeters of what was once considered entertainment.

Thanks Michael, for that night long ago, my own personal date with you. Though I stood in the midst of thousands, you made me feel like it was all just for me. You will truly be missed.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Metallic Monday

Chrystie Hobo
Neiman Marcus

Happy Monday, everyone. Hope everyone had a positively stylish weekend and a Happy Father's Day to all who it applied.

No matter what the season, metallics can always take any look to the next level in glamor. Jeans can be dressed up with a metallic top or accessories (handbag, shoes, etc.) A bronze or gold cami under a business suit is a perfect daytime to evening ensemble.

So today at FA'SHOE'NISTA! we celebrate Metallic Monday with these beautiful and unusual trends.

Woven Leather Pump
Neiman Marcus

Camilla Skovgaard

Christian Louboutin
Gold Metallic Pump
Neiman Marcus

Metallic Leather Platform Sandal

Metallic Platform Sandal

Marc Jacobs
Metallic Gold Bootie

Nina Ricci
Metallic Pink Ponyskin Stiletto

The Bizarrely Beautiful? What do you think, Ladies?

Louis Vuitton
Gold Brocade Thigh High Boot

Friday, June 19, 2009

ANNOUNCEMENT! A Dream Fulfilled

Hi, my Darlings. Just wanted to alert you all of my newest project. I've finally decided to pursue my dream of full-time illustration and writing, particularly children's illustration. So it is my pleasure to invite you all to visit my latest blog, Dream Out Loud! Design Studio.

Come often and enjoy as I work to overcome my fears and explore the talents and gifts God has so graciously bestowed upon me.

Divine Sparkle: New Work from Mark Schwartz of High Heeled Art

Hello, my Loverlees, and Happy Friday! I'm so happy that summer seems to be finally here. Some of you may remember on a previous entry the interview I did with artist Mark Schwartz of High Heeled Art. Well, for an update, FA'SHOE'NISTA is featuring four new works by the talented artist and shoe designer.

Enjoy the feast for the eyes.

Mark Schwartz
High Heeled Art

Mark Schwartz
High Heeled Art

Mark Schwartz
High Heeled Art

Mark Schwartz
High Heeled Art

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Prada Pretty

Pretty is as Prada does...

Bow Platform Sandal
Neiman Marcus

Cracle Leather Embroidered Heel
w/Fringe and Stud detail

Suede Ruffle pump
Neiman Marcus

Velvet Embroidered Heel
w/fringe stud detail

Cervo Lux Print Tote
Neiman Marcus

Jeweled T-Strap Platform Sandal
Neiman Marcus

...nuff said.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

On the Rise: This Fall season's latest trend--Over the Knee Boots

This fall season's favorite on runways across the globe is the over the knee boot. The trend, like most others, is not new in and of itself, but designers such as Manolo Blahnik, Chloe, Stella McCartney, and Christian Louboutin have put a new and edgier spin on the classic design (shades of 60's London!)

The look is long, lean, and dynamic. Best fitted (in my opinion) for the leggier fashion siren, these styles lend themselves to daring hemlines (mid to lower thigh), leggings and/or skinny jeans tucked inside. While I love the overall look of the OTK, because I am considerably shorter than the average catwalk diva, and I wear my skirts slightly longer (to the knee and below), this style of boot probably wouldn't accomplish the full effect on me. Although, I wouldn't mind trying that Stella McCartney number, for sure! However, for those of you who are willing, ready, leggy, and able to pull off the look, or you feel the need to experiment and indulge your inner Mod Matrix Maven, take a gander at what this upcoming fall season has to offer in this cutting edge trend.

Alexandra Neel
Lamb and Patent boot

Tied Leather OTK boot
Neiman Marcus

Christian Louboutin
Button-up OTK boot
Neiman Marcus

Christian Louboutin
Suede over the knee boot w/mesh cutout

Christian Louboutin
Stretch Platform OTK boot
Neiman Marcus

Giuseppe Zanotti
OTK Croc Embossed boot
Neiman Marcus

Stella McCartney
Pierced Leather OTK boot
Neiman Marcus

Manolo Blahnik
Cinched Nappa OTK boot
Neiman Marcus

And now, the Piece de resistance...

Manolo blahnik
Cava Fur Trim OTK boot
Neiman Marcus

Monday, June 1, 2009

THE BOLD AND THE BRILLIANT: The Debut Footwear Collection of British Designer Cleo Barbour

Tahiti Teal, Wallaby pink, Saxony Black. Richly bled colors that saturate bold, feminine, impeccably designed shoes. Such are the styles that make up British designer Cleo Barbour's flagship footwear collection.

The newly launched AW 09/10 Cleo B line is a testament to the sublime with the infusion of nature's hues based on great Birds of Paradise. The shoes are a mixture of comfort and 21st century style consisting of 20 different designs that include shoe boots, ankle boots, peep-toed wedge and stiletto heels, embellished with swarovski elements, hand-crafted acrylic, suede and leather trimming, and eclectic combinations of fabrics.

Barbour received her education at the London College of Fashion's Cordwainer's college, and trained at the world renowned Salvatore Ferragamo design studio in Florence, Italy. She has assisted in the couture collection for the Georgina Goodman studio, and has proven her capacity for the edgy and the unusual through her extensive involvement with Nicholas Kirkwood and his highly acclaimed Avant-Garde collection.

FA'SHOE'NISTA spoke with the designer about her eclectic styles and the mixture of comfort and high fashion.

FA'SHOE'NISTA: How long have you been a designer and when did you get your start?

Cleo Barbour: When I was a child I had an obsession with a pair of Harrods 1980s gold stilettos which I found whilst delving in the depths of my Mother’s shoe cupboard. I realised there was more to shoes than I had always believed and insisted that they were to sit at the top of the Christmas tree where they can now be found year on year. Since then I've had a fascination with shoes and I decided to get serious and take footwear design as a degree at Cordwainers starting in 2004.

Kookaburra blue
Cleo B.

FA'SHOE'NISTA: Your designs are absolutely beautiful. Is it just me, or do I see a forties kind of femme fatale thing going on here, especially in the peep-toe pumps? The mixture of the shiny gold heel and the cone shape at the top and nape of the shoe gives it an edgy femininity. I also love the wedge heels. Can you tell us a little about your inspiration for this design?

Cleo Barbour: You might be right about the femme-fatale aspect - I want my shoes to be beautiful, sexy and feminine with just the right amount of edginess. The wedge heel mirrors the shape of the leg, which makes it really flattering and curvaceously sexy. I like to use fluid design lines which work very well on the wedge.

Cleo B

FA'SHOE'NISTA: Your affinity to the colors of nature is evident in the "names" you give to your designs. When did you first discover all that the sublime beauty of creation had to offer? And why the Birds of Paradise?

Cleo Barbour: The shoes are named after species of Birds of Paradise from New Guinea. They have fantastic majestic names such as 'Splendid' and 'Superb' which I thought suited the colourful shoes perfectly. I first saw the birds by chance on a David Attenborough wildlife documentary and thought they were the most amazing natural creation I'd ever seen.

Paradise Pink
Cleo B

FA'SHOE'NISTA: What does the design process entail for you from inception to finished product?

Cleo Barbour: I constantly gather images and material that inspires me, then I archive it until I come to design. By this stage I have normally decided upon an inspirational theme and find as much additional imagery as possible to aid the process. Once I have got my ideas on paper I have to choose the best designs and keep on refining them until they are perfect. I then send them to the factory who create a pattern which I then normally change slightly - we keep on working like this, making small changes, until the final sample is finished.

FA'SHOE'NISTA: Color plays such a major role in your designs. As an artist and painter, I can relate to this concept. Out of all the colors you use, do you have a favorite?

Cleo Barbour: Dark Turquoise, Indigo, Deep Magenta and Gold are my favourites. I also like light lime green, coral and certain shades of orange at the moment.

Saxony Teal
Cleo B

FA'SHOE'NISTA: How do you decide on the types of embellishments to use on any particular design?

Cleo Barbour: I hand sculpted the gold embellishment in the current AW09 collection - I wanted it to mirror the shapes of the heel, wedge and leg. The idea came from looking at the wings of birds of paradise and how they flourish outwards in a similar shape to the embellishment. I like my adornments to be big and make a statement, so I only look for really eye-catching ones.

FA'SHOE'NISTA: What drives and motivates you to create?

Cleo Barbour: The satisfaction of creating a collection which starts as a few scribbles on paper and turns into wearable products that people buy.

FA'SHOE'NISTA: How did it feel to work in couture with giants such as the Georgina Goodman studio and Nicholas Kirkwood?

Cleo Barbour: Being in the studios of these two designers gave me a great insight into the ups and downs of running a shoe business and made me realise what a competitive niche it is. I was always a bit scared I would make a mistake or mess up a job, but I was diligent enough not to! It was a great privilege to have an insight into their companies as I admire them both greatly.

Superb Aubergine
Cleo B

FA'SHOE'NISTA: Okay, fill in the blank. Those who want a career in the fashion industry should…

Cleo Barbour: Get as much work experience as possible and build their knowledge, confidence and contacts. I would recommend you do work experience in all aspects of the industry too, so that you understand the whole process and business side of things.

Thank you so much for taking the time to inspire us here at FA'SHOE'NISTA! We look forward to more of your beautiful designs.