Weekend at the Movies

There are so many independent, low-budget movies that get lost in the jungle of mediocre cultural pulp. I am trying very hard not to miss those, which I know would be appreciated by those who do not have such easy access to all movies possible that I seem to have. That is why this weekend I decided to watch "5 to 7" directed by Victor Levin.

The story starts with a young man (Anton Yelchin) who like many before him is trying to find his luck in New York City as a writer. He is fortunate to have wealthy parents who are giving him the freedom to experiment with his future possibilities and put the idea of college education aside for  some undefined time. Brian, as a typical aspiring writer, in a few years has collected a very impressive number of rejection letters from the magazines he admires and no promise of ever being published. 

Brian is a bit of a loner, focusing mostly on writing. He said at the beginning of the movie: "In New York you are never more than 20 feet away from someone you know or you are meant to know." Just when he utters those words, the magical encounter takes place. Brian, 24, meets a 32 year old French woman, Arielle. She is incredibly sexy, seductive, as well as married with 2 kids. Her name may remind someone of Disney's little siren, however she lures Brian into her world in a professional way, more like the life-threatening seductive sirens trying to lure sailors in "The Odyssey".

                                                                 "5 to 7" 2014, Director: Victor Levin

She truly is a manifestation of French liberated movie heroine, who made me and my friend watch her every move with envy. Her every move, gesture, the way she smiles, the way she speaks is masterfully constructed to woe the younger and innocent man into the complex charade of her married Upper Eastside life.

I do not want to reveal too much of the plot, as I would love you to discover this movie for yourself. It is a skillful combination of Woody Allen' s New York life tricks seasoned with the French lightness of being in a subject of love affairs. The cultural and emotional exchange between Brian and Arielle is fascinating, joyful and dark at the same time. 

Berenice Marlohe is perfect for the role of the French lover. Arielle's fashion sense should be a guidance for all those who want to walk and talk the successful language of seduction in style. Cameos of Glen Close and Frank Langella are such a nice treat. 

If you like New York and dark twists of the French romantic comedies, do not overlook this one!

Designer Crush - Stella Jean

I rarely have a designer crush. It is mostly about liking this dress, that pair of shoes, that material, the philosophy behind it, the luxury of the feel or just the fun idea. However, I am completely in awe with the fashion designer, Stella Jean.  She was born in Rome and resides there with her 2 children. She started her adventure with fashion as a model. Quickly, did she realize that what she really wanted was to be a creator rather than just a presenter, even though she did not have a formal fashion education.

To be a designer in a contemporary, ever changing fashion world it is no longer enough to just design beautiful clothes, you need to prove that you understand the world you live in and its never satisfied need for continous changes and social awareness. Being half-Haitian, half-Italian, Stella Jean deeply respects her heritage and she collaborates with the local artisans through the United Nation's International Trade Center's Ethical Fashion Initiative. In her interview for Something About Magazine, she said that: "It is about an accountable business which is environmentally sound, promoting sustainable economic development and opportunities in countries that do not need our charity." For that reason, for me she definitely stands out of the crowd of the super colorful but often vain fashion world.

Her big breakthrough moment came in 2013 when Giorgio Armani asked her to showcase her collection during Milan fashion week. Her clothes were featured at "Glamour of Italian fashion 1945-2014" exhibition at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London (See my post if you want to find out more about that). Among her celebrity fans are: Rihanna and Beyonce. The Guardian magazine described her style as: Rossana Ilincic meets Frida Kahlo, which I think is really accurate.

Her FW15 collection takes my breath away. The silhouettes are so lady-like, with Scarlett O'Hara-like legendary wasp waists, elegant wool, tweed, herringbone, playful pom-poms, beautifully embroidered full skirts, lavish embelishments in the least predictable places (like classic trench with beautiful chinoiserie motives), heavy wool skirts with super bright jackets, patterned skirts paired with manly striped shirts. Stella Jean does not have to be provocative or dramatic as a designer to prove that her fashion sense is modern. She travels through traditions, cultural differences, sense of beauty, restores traditional techniques and the end result is simply admirable. 

Do you have any designers' crushes now? Let me know, I always love to learn and explore. 

13 October Inspirations to Make You Fall in Love with Fall

Not only Summer seems like hundreds days ago but it is also already October. I hope you are all craving a monthly dose of inspirations, which will boost your imagination and self-esteem during short, rain and gloomy days of fall. From cozy but super fashionable things to wear, to inspirational coffee table books, stylish reads, exhibitions to see, cosmetics to brighten your day and beautiful home decor items; all of those crammed in this tiny but information-full post.

Love, Style, Life, Garance DoreMy Island, Patrisha McLeanMajestic Disorder Magazine
We all need some food for thought when the days at the beach are over. I chose 3 completely different reads for your October pleasure. Long awaited publishing debut of Garance Dore "Love, Style, Life" will land in the local and virtual bookstores on October 27. I have to say I can't wait for the unique photos and stylish advice  from one of the most prolific internet bloggers and artists. 

"My Island. Portraits of Maine Island Children" is a beautiful collection of black and white photographs portraying tiny islands of Maine with children as the main focus of the story. For all of those who miss summers in Maine, this is  a perfect reminder why this part of the US is  purely magical land.

Majestic Disorder is a culture and arts publication published three times a year, which I discovered once again thanks to Instagram. I highly recommend it for those who crave more than glossy editorials and gossip and are looking for inspiration from the world of sustainable fashion, global affairs and cultural issues. The editor in chief, Kelley Mullarkey is originally from Chicago but currently living in London.

Lere Jacket, Aldo Martins; Cashmere Sweater, Orwell + Austen Cashmere
I am absolutely obsessed with any kinds of sweaters, jumpers, cardigans, which have the bohemian/street style vibe and with those two, I feel I can survive the autumn chill. Aldo Martins, Barcelona based brand, offers so many luxurious and cozy boho-hipi culture inspired tops, blouses, coats and jackets that I just want to have them all. Don't we all need a cashmere sweater saying "I do not regret anything!"? Just be honest!

Fashion Underground: The World of Susanne BartschOh Boy, Man Repeller's Podcast
For those who will be in NYC between now and December 5, 2015, please do not miss the exhibition "Fashion Underground: The World of Susanne Bartsch" organized by the Fashion Institute of Technology. Bartsch has been the fashion queen on NY underground night life isince the 80's, a global style influencer and a woman who brought Vivienne Westwood's collections to the American audience. Her lavish style could be quite an inspiration to modern party goers and fashion lovers.

For all of those who admire fashion and know that it cannot be taken seriously ever, Oh Boy, a new podcast from the acclaimed blogger Leandra Medine is a must. It's fresh, honest, real, funny and it feels like you are listening to two friends sitting on  a couch and sipping wine. 

Black Pom Pom Cap, River IslandParker Backpack, The Frye Company
The quality of leather used by The Fry Company is legendary and I can prove that by being a proud owner of 4 pairs of their boots. This backpack made of distressed leather will go so well with any winter coat and leather jacket at the same time. All you need to stay warm and stylish is a fun hat. I have been obsessed with pom pom hats since last year and River Island made me happy with making one at a very affordable price. 

Mugs, A Farmer's DaughterRecycled Cashmere Baby Blanket, Etsy
Fall evenings are great for cup of tea, book and warm blanket. Nothing is more suitable for that occasion that mugs that will cheer you up and hand-made super soft blanket made from recycled cashmere. 
Nail Lacquer, Smith and CultPersonal Planner, Kikki.K
I know, I know there are so many apps, online calendars, organizers, which make life so much lighter and accessible but they are so many moments in life when the real deal paper planner is such a nice accessory to have, e.g. on the desk in your super stylish office, when you are stuck on the plane and you forgot the charger for your phone or when you sit in a cafe on a Saturday morning and you do not want to be  of many latptop-carrying clones.

A nail polish, which matches your style and personality, screams: Power!!! I am obsessed with Smith & Cult wide color range and the name of this color "Lover Creeps"! Speak no more!

Let's start October in good spirits and great style! Let me know what inspires you!