Flying High: Burberry Prorsum & THAT Aviator Jacket

Ah, the Burberry Aviator. I have been avoiding this topic ever since it seared its mannishly sexy shearling and leather and buckle bedecked awesomeness onto my beleaguered eyeballs way back in January.

Why?! I hear you not so much gasp as mutter in a slightly tuttish and reproachful kind of way. (After all, is it not my job, my stated purpose, my purported raison d’être to provide up-to-the-minute commentary on the latest and greatest, the statement and the key, the must-haves and the – seriously? WTF. Don’t-make-me-come-down-there – must-nots of fashion, so help me God?!)

Well. Before you hot-foot it to the fashion blog next door, hear me out. A lack of foresight was most definitely not behind this seemingly insane omission – who in their right mind, or even their totally and utterly wrong mind, could have doubted the trend powerhouse that the Burberry Aviator would become?! (Even my Dad clocked this one and he styles himself in heady mix of late 70’s golfing jumpers, biker leathers and retro punk tees; a kind of Curtis Strange does swapsies in a darkened room with Johnny Rotten). No. My reasoning was simple…

a) The world, his aunt and his anally retentive parrot Phyllis were all on the Aviator bandwagon: homages to the flying jacket were loop-the-looping their way across the blogosphere, twitosphere and general internet-o-sphere like a swarm of starved locusts ready to homogenise the people of the globe into one giant Aviator-wearing fashion-army squadron.
Why add my barely audible squeak to the cacophony of the fashionable – and not quite so fashionable – set?…It is after all possible to be too trendy and I’m not really a massive fan of Goliath-sized bandwagons (in case you hadn’t noticed).

But it was b) that really got me. The lust factor. Of course I didn’t want to write about it…the level of torture is practically mind-blowing…like forcing a nil-by-mouth patient – or someone similarly hungry – to write the next M&S commercial surrounded by glossy pictures of exotically pre-modified potatoes and mouth-watering meats post-modified to Elysian heights. In a word: harsh.

The fact of the matter is I am totally, utterly, unequivocally, obsessively and (ever so slightly) psychotically in love with this coat. I don’t just love this coat, I f*%#ing love this coat. I would probably sell my own grandmother for one, I’d live off nothing but Tesco value bran flakes for eternity x pi + 1 just to have one in my possession, never mind to wear. I mean, Look. At. It. It’s a stylists wet dream, an item which, quite literally, goes with ANYTHING: even a fluro tri-colour shell-suit circa ‘82 would have a certain charm when paired with this baby…(Think about it…scary huh!?!?)

What more can I say? Christopher Bailey: my hat is off. May I please board the bandwagon?

Images courtesy of & Homotography.

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Game. Set. Match.

Another glorious day, another sporting fixture, another excuse to ogle the honed, toned and physically well-coordinated. Yes it’s Wimbledon – you’ll have to forgive me for keeping quiet on the World Cup front: static generating nylon nasties have absolutely no role in my wardrobe whatsoever (although kudos deservingly goes to Paraguay for their knockout  homage to Pippi Longstocking).

Tennis on the other hand serves up a wealth of classically chic sportif separates for the discerning fashionista (not to mention the associated accessory boom – shin pads? No thank you….chic cream fingerless leather gloves…? Well, go on then).

Think refined elegance and channel Gaultier’s take on the trend for Hermès: virginal pleating, cable knits and effortlessly stylish palazzo pants. Accessorize court-side with a visor, sweat bands and that all important ivory Birkin

For the ultimate in sports-casual sophistication embrace long-line, ankle-skimming maxis to femme-up those ubiquitous masculine shirt shapes.

FYI: Sweat (as if a Hermès girl would – could?) and rackets are an accessory too far…leave the rackets to the runways and the sweat to the pros: the key is to keep this look sleek, fresh and well away from the dreaded realm of fancy dress faux pas-dom.

Photographs courtesy of

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Alexa Chung for Madewell Fall 2010

Lo! What’s that on the horizon? Could it be a celebrity collaboration to salivate over…one whose sheer awesomeness will coax your long-suffering wallet into submission (recession or no recession)?

Give profuse thanks and sacrificial offerings to the retro redux gods of yore…

The Fashionista’s Fashionista, Alexa Chung’s debut collection for Madewell – hot, hip and hype-worthy Americana brand with prep-tastic credentials – rocks into your world (and mine, pay cheque pending) this August featuring fresh-faced androgynous casuals with a smattering of sweetness and a vintage twist all topped off with an all-American-prep-meets-London-Indie-chic edge of a cherry…

Photographs courtesy of Nitrolicious …go forth and covet!

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Look du Jour: Shades of Grey

Kimono-meets-karate suit in this relaxed and playful silver-grey thigh skimmer…

The brogue / strap-and-sheer panelled hold-ups combination really adds a jolt of masculine-feminine elegance (not to mention raw and raunchy pizzazz) which takes this outfit from standard dreamy-casual to striking androgychic.  A trend-splicing  force majure. ♥ !

Photograph/ Styling by Laura Malena: read her blog here (translation required!) or check out her other looks on Lookbook.

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McQ by Alexander McQueen: Fall 2010

Goth-grunge meets gypsy-punk in plaid, patchwork, deconstructed denim and undone layers. Touch-me texture clashes cut through the hotchpotch of patterns, florals jostle with Beetlejuice stripes, whilst dirty work boots add a masculine edge to feminine fabrics, and nod to the androgychic of the 90’s. A style tour de force by one of the greatest designers of our age.

McQueen, you will be missed.

To see more of the collection you’d better hot-foot it over to nitrolicious

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Provoked by my recent perusal of YSL’s super-sharp 2010 Unisex collection I thought I’d take a little look at the tentative re-emergence of androgynous aestheticism on the runways this year. With names like Stella McCartney, 3.1 Philip Lim, DKNY and Alexander Wang leading the vanguard in borrowed-from-my-boyfriend modishness isn’t it about time you joined the boys’ brigade?

Yves Saint Laurent Edition Unisex Collection

YSL 'Le Smoking'

Last resurrected on the back of grunge in the nineties and epitomised by YSL’s legendary ‘Le Smoking’ Tuxedo in the sixties, the craze for the boyishly dressed girl first rocketed into the limelight in the Roaring Twenties with the infamous rise of the flapper. Page-boy bobs, loose straight tailoring, descending waist-lines were de rigueur, curls, cleavage and the fusty-old-hourglass silhouette were most definitely not. Scandalous.

While it may not be quite so shocking – so risqué – in today’s society, androgyny still packs a hefty sartorial punch delivering a double-whammy of highly sexualized ambiguity and convention-busting role appropriation (a derisory two fingers up to the rule book, if you will). If you think about it in terms of edge, androgyny is without a doubt the edgiest look of all; from tall, tailored and fierce (we’re talking man-eating fierce) to doe-eyed tomboyish naiveté, we’re talking the megagon of looks – at least.

3.1 Philip Lim s/s 2010

What you want to avoid (like the plague) with this look is overkill. Androgyny is a kind of best of both cherry-picking exercise in which you – funnily enough – take the best aspects from both gender closets and blend them together to create something which is neither one, nor the other. Think masculine silhouettes with a feminine twist – boxy-tailoring with skyscraper Louboutins for instance – or, reverse the idea and go for a girly summer dress with boyish brogues.

DKNY p/f 2010

Stella McCartney s/s 2010

Done well, boy-meets-girl is the undisputed supremo of style-sexy… but beware! Stray too far into the man-drobe and you run the risk of crossing the butch-border. Being mistaken for a man – or, for that matter, a socially contrived lesbian stereotype – is rarely (if ever) a good thing.

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