Musings on the culture of keeping up appearances

All the Rage

Category: Music style

Between Coachellas, Snoop Dogg livens up the Levi's Haus

Snoop Dogg
On Tuesday night, Coachella headliner Snoop Dogg seemed to be making the most of his between-festival down time, taking in the premiere of Magnolia Pictures' "Marley" (a new documentary about musician Bob Marley) at Arclight Hollywood, followed by hosting an intimate house party in the shadow of the Chateau Marmont for Levi's in celebration (which we think means in charitable support) of his Snoop Youth Football League

In between DJ duties and rapping out some crowd favorites (including "Gin and Juice"), his Snoopness, clad in an oversized blue T-shirt emblazoned with some Snoop-centric artwork, a crocheted cap in the reggae-favored stripes of red, black, green and yellow and sunglasses with a crystal Adidas logo in one corner, obligingly posed for photos with party guests (including Paris Hilton) and did his best to fill the room with his particular brand of combustible enthusiasm.

"We're gonna be doing this every week here at the Levi's Haus," the top Dogg told the crowd at one point -- which we're guessing was news to the Levi Strauss & Co. folks who use the Selma Avenue space as a VIP space/entertainment industry networking hub. (Formerly a private residence, it's been dubbed the Levi's Haus -- with a spelling that evokes the namesake founder's German heritage).

Levi's slate of invite-only, Coachella-hammocked events continues Wednesday night with a party scheduled to include performances by DJ Cheapshot and Odd Future.

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-- Adam Tschorn

 Photos: Among those in the Haus for Levi's invite-only party were (from left) DJ Snoop Dogg himself, pro skateboarder Rob Dyrdek and reality TV actress Jamie Chung. Credit: Eric Charbonneau/WireImage 

Mulberry throws a monster pool party for Coachella

Mulberry party
British luxury brand Mulberry threw a poolside party and barbecue at the Parker Palm Springs on Saturday, with creative director Emma Hill hosting a slew of Coachella-bound bold-face names, including actresses Lily Collins, Kate Bosworth, Emma Watson, "Mad Men" costume designer Janie Bryant, L.A.-based fashion designer Corey Lynn Calter and jewelry designer Suzanne Felsen.

Collins, a Coachella newbie, was happy for the break. "Last month, I was on 23 planes in 20 days," between the press tour for her film "Mirror Mirror" and shooting the indie film "Writers" in North Carolina, she said. "So I'm just excited to be hanging out with my friends."

Janie Bryant in Karen Walker sunglassesBryant was another newcomer to the Coachella scene. "I usually go to Stagecoach," said the Tennesee native, referring to the country-themed music festival that also takes place in Indio in springtime. Bryant was wearing oversized bubble gum pink sunglasses, a 1980s print playsuit and an aquamarine ring designed by pal Felsen. So what do Stagecoach festival goers wear? "A rebel flag bikini and cowboy boots," Bryant said. "Well ... not me personally."

The Mulberry event was themed around monsters. The entrance was flanked by humongous, hard plastic monster paws. Outsized inflatable creatures floated in the pool and populated the lawn. Even the lounge chairs had become creature comforts covered with beach towels bearing a hairy monster pelt print and dotted with tiny, monster-shaped pillows that proved popular props for those being photographed poolside.

But there was a method to the monster madness since it reflected the inspiration of the brand's fall and winter 2012 collection -- Maurice Sendak's children's book "Where the Wild Things Are," as well as Spike Jonze's movie adaptation of it.

Mulberry party
"I almost bawled my eyes out when I saw that film," Hill said earlier in the day, taking me through the fur, boucle, lace and tweed fall samples of the collection, which proved to be popular choices with Mulberry's celeb fans on the chilly first day and night of the Coachella festival, when they hosted an after-party at the Parker again with a performance by Kasabian.

Some standout pieces included a leather-and-lace bustier dress with tie-dye panels, a flame-colored tweed coat, a tribal-meets-Art Deco zigzag beaded flight jacket, sparkly tiger print sweaters, shaggy fur vests and monster-print sweatshirts, all in a grunge color palette of black, gray, orange and army green.

The Del Rey bag, inspired by songstress Lana Del Rey, spawned a waiting list as soon as it came down the runway at London Fashion Week in February. For fall, it comes in an immensely chic iridescent goldish green snakeprint leather, and some versions have a turtle shaped lock. The Maisie is another new bag, with trompe l'oeil details on the front and shearling or snakeskin sides. In addition, old friends the Alexa and Lily bags have been updated with chunky chain handles, tassels and studding.

Mulberry will open its first West Coast store June 16 on Grand Street in San Francisco. And an L.A. store is in the works too.

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Photos, from top: At left, actress Lily Collins and Mulberry creative director Emma Hill; right, Wild Belle's brother-and-sister act Natalie and Elliot Bergman were among those attending Mulberry's monster-themed pool party at the Parker Palm Springs during the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival. Credit: Donato Sardella.

"Mad Men" costume designer Janie Bryant sips a drink poolside. Credit: Adam Tschorn / Los Angeles Times.

Harley Viera-Newton, from left; Atlanta de Cadenet Taylor; Emma Watson. Credit: Donato Sardella.

Stella McCartney hosts star-studded premiere of dad's video

McCartney Debut
Last Friday, as the first night of the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival unspooled in Indio, a lower-key but equally as impressive convergence of music and fashion took place at the West Hollywood Stella McCartney boutique, where a constellation of celebrities turned out for the premiere of Paul McCartney's music video "My Valentine" from his most recent album "Kisses on the Bottom."

Pamela Anderson posed for photographs on the red carpet, following on the heels of Jane Fonda, who stepped into the store to join the likes of Ed Ruscha, Reese Witherspoon, Kristen Stewart, Gwen Stefani, Gwyneth Paltrow and Woody Harrelson, who milled about and chatted amiably while team McCartney — Paul (accompanied by wife Nancy Shevell) and fashion designer-daughter Stella shook hands and greeted celebri-fans gathered to watch the video.

It was a rare moment indeed to watch A-list celebrities act like star-struck teens in front of the musician. "I'm such a fan — obviously," said a wide-eyed Zooey Deschanel as she shook Paul's hand. Following that, a proud mother introduced her 8-year-old daughter to Sir Paul, saying: "She can play all your songs on the piano!" as Ginnifer Goodwin looked on.

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Details, Kaleidoscope to help men shop Coachella style

Coachella Style 2011
Yes, one part of the Coachella convergence of music and style is about pairing bands with brands (a topic Times fashion critic Booth Moore wrote about for Sunday's Image section). But the other big part of it is the opportunity for fashion folks to observe what the festival crowd is wearing.

Street style photographs (perhaps "field style" is more accurate) of festival fashions now routinely make their way to service-oriented "get the look" articles in fashion glossies and style blogs, many of which end up running long after the event (or in advance of the following year's).

But this year Conde Nast men's magazine Details, in partnership with shopping app Kaleidoscope, plans to dramatically shorten that turnaround time to 72 hours, serving up a shoppable gallery of five to 10 men's looks from Coachella's first weekend (April 13 to 15) to the magazine's website by that Sunday night. According to a Details representative, the gallery will grow by an additional look each day during the following week that will capture the stylish either at the festival or one of the many Coachella-adjacent parties. Another handful of images, culled from the festival's second weekend, will make for a total of 20 to 25 shoppable looks. 

What Kaleidoscope brings to the table is technology that analyzes the images, breaks them down by garment (i.e. poncho, striped cardigan, war bonnet, five-pocket jeans and the like) and suggests where -- from a list of Details' retail partners that includes Mr. Porter, Nordstrom, Neiman Marcus and Saks -- the item (or a very similar one) can be purchased. To get a feel for how the technology works,you can test drive a demo version of the company's mobile app, which is currently only available for Android devices, at Kaleidoscope's website.

According to Details' announcement, this is the first time any magazine has used Kaleidoscope's technology. "We are piloting this at Coachella," said the publication's editor-in-chief, Dan Peres. "But hope to scale the model to be used in in many different ways.” Peres also noted that the technology fits with the Details readership, which research indicates is "socially savvy and hyper-engaged."

"They are 105% more likely than the average man to post on social networking sites and four times more likely to Tweet brand recommendations, like a brand on Facebook, and recommend a product online,” Peres said.

If it works as described, the combination of Kaleidoscope's technology, Details' festival fashion photos, the retail partners' ability to deliver in-stock goods, and the two-weekend Coachella schedule could result in a kind of micro trend where what's worn in weekend one can directly influence what's purchased for -- and worn to -- weekend two.

Throw in the fact that both weekends will have the same lineup of musical acts and it looks like we're in for a massive case of déjà vu in the desert.  

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-- Adam Tschorn

Photos: Details magazine and Kaleidoscope are teaming up to make festival looks -- though not necessarily the ones on display at the 2011 Coachella Valley Music and Art Festival -- easily shoppable through an online gallery. Credit: Brian van der Brug/Los Angeles Times.

President Obama to get a taste of Coachella on Vermont visit

Grace Potter & the Nocturnals to entertain Obama

When President Obama makes his first presidential visit to Burlington, Vt., on Friday he'll likely be treated to many of the things that the Green Mountain State is famous for (think Ben & Jerry's ice cream, Cabot cheddar cheese and anything maple-flavored). But, he'll also get a little musical taste of what's in store for thousands of Coachella-bound festival-goers in mid-April.

That's because the March 30 fundraiser at the University of Vermont includes a musical performance by Vermont's own Grace Potter & The Nocturnals (bandmates Scott Tournet, Matt Burr and Benny Yurco), who will be performing at the two-weekend music festival at the Empire Polo field in Indio starting April 13.

When we caught up with singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Grace Potter on the phone earlier Tuesday to talk fashion for an upcoming pre-Coachella-style story, the Waitsfield native was back in the 802. And while she had already narrowed her Coachella wardrobe choices down to a handful of contenders (her short list includes Stella McCarney, Alexander McQueen and Givenchy), she hadn't yet decided what to wear for her presidential close-up.

"That's actually a good question," Potter said when asked what she was going to don for the high-profile event. "I got home thinking I had a whole wardrobe full of stuff here, but it turns out it's all in our trailer in Nashville so I've got to figure something out."

Potter explained that thanks to the hectic, coast-hopping schedule leading up to the upcoming release of the band's latest studio album release ("The Lion The Beast The Beat," due out June 12), she's essentially left her clothes scattered across the country.

"I have a [wardrobe] trailer in Nashville, I have a closet in L.A., I have three closets here and I've got a storage space," she explained.

But, whether she ultimately wears something like the leather-fringed, thigh-grazing Alexander McQueen dress she wore at a Hollywood Bowl performance last summer, or pays homage to Vermont's unofficial state color combination with blue jeans and a hunter plaid shirt, the only thing Potter's sure of is that she'll be wearing something.

"Yes," Potter said with a chuckle. "I will wear clothes for the president."

And, for those of you who won't be in Burlington, Vt. on Friday, but still want a pre-Coachella sample of the sound (and look) of Grace Potter & The Nocturnals, they're slated to perform on NBC's "The Tonight Show with Jay Leno" on April 5.

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-- Adam Tschorn

Photos: At left, Grace Potter & The Nocturnals (from left, Scott Tournet, Benny Yurco, Grace Potter and Matt Burr). Credit: Kirk McKoy / Los Angeles Times. At right, President Obama delivers a speech in Mt. Holly, N.C., on March 7. Credit: John W. Adkisson / Getty Images

 

Fashion News: Kim Kardashian's divorce as product pitch?

Kim Kardashian Divorces Yuja Wang Returns
On Halloween morning, Kim Kardashian filed for divorce from husband of 72 days Kris Humphries. And by midafternoon, we were already receiving beauty product pitches for a facial mist described as lasting longer than Kardashian's marriage. Ouch. And we're guessing that her decision to dress up as a villain named Poison Ivy for a costume party last weekend was a total coincidence. [Los Angeles Times] 

Do those sex-laden TV advertisements for Axe body spray rub you the wrong way? The answer is apparently yes for some viewers in South Africa. A recent Axe television commerical that depicts female angels falling from the sky and tossing away their halos -- has been banned in that country. [N.Y. Daily News] 

The last time 24-year-old piano virtuoso Yuja Wang was in town, the dress she wore on stage at the Hollywood Bowl caused quite a kerfuffle. Since she's headed back to town for three performances at Walt Disney Concert Hall starting Friday, we wanted to revisit the issue. She did not. [Los Angeles Times]

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-- Adam Tschorn

Left photo: Reality star Kim Kardashian has filed for divorce from husband of 72 days Kris Humphries. Credit: Vincent Damourette / EPS

Right photo: Pianist Yuja Wang at the German Phono Academy awards. Credit: Rainer Jensen / EPA    

Frugal Fashion: A chic Lady Gaga at the I Heart Radio music festival

Ladygaga2 She's been described as scandalous, provocative and a bit more than crass, but a conservative Lady Gaga? Oh, my. It may have been hard to recognize her without the lace, glitter and exposed skin, but Lady Gaga was the portrait of reserved elegance at the I Heart Radio music festival in Las Vegas. 

Her ensemble was a surprise for fans who are used to seeing the fashion wild card in outfits such as the infamous meat dress, red lace bodysuit and mask or the Saturn-like rings she wore to the Grammys in 2010.

Gaga has captivated the fashion world, winning the CFDA fashion icon award earlier this year, appearing in Mugler's fall/winter 2011 runway show and scoring collaborations with coveted fashion director Nicola Formichetti.

At the recent I Heart radio event,Gaga took a break from her quirky ensembles for a put- together, classic look. She channeled Audrey Hepburn, looking très "Breakfast at Tiffany's" -- and maybe even a tad Jackie O. -- in a sleeveless black top with bow detail, pencil skirt, elbow-length leather gloves, plenty of ice and her signature practically-eating-her-face-oversized flat top shades. Sure, it still had a classic Gaga costume edge with all the bling, but the outfit's '60s elegance is a look that can translate to everyday wear.

Ladygagaclothes

Get Gaga's look with a simple shell and skirt or a similar dress. For separates, try the Charter Club pencil skirt from Macys.com for $44.98 and the mesh inset bandage pencil skirt from ArdenB.com for $34.99, and pair with a top such as this Cynthia Rowley top with a flared bottom from Yoox.com for $39. To get a similar look with a dress, try the Warehouse sheer top peplum dress from Asos.com for $128.07.

Ladygagaaccessories

Gaga's accessories add some glamour and a little spice. For a similar pair of long gloves, get the Lord and Taylor cashmere bow embellished long gloves for $44.99. Add some sparkle with the Crystal teardrop necklace and earring set from Target.com for $12.99, and for some oversized shades, get the F0868 sunglasses from Forever21.com for $5.80. 

This is the first accessible look we've seen from Gaga that could be worn to something other than a costume party. I guess she doesn't need all the hoopla to grab our attention. Even in a simple, black ensemble, we're hooked.

Happy shopping!

Have an outfit you're dying to buy but need a frugal alternative? Email us a picture. We're up for the challenge.

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-- Jenn Harris

twitter.com/jenn_harris_

Photo (top): Singer Lady Gaga poses backstage at the iHeartRadio Music Festival held at the MGM Grand Garden Arena on Sept. 24, 2011 in Las Vegas. Credit: Michael Buckner / Getty Images for Clear Channel

Photo (middle): Charter Club pencil skirt from Macys.com; Mesh inset bandage pencil skirt from ArdenB.com; Cynthia Rowley top with a flared bottom from Yoox.com; and Warehouse sheer top peplum dress from Asos.com.

Photo (bottom): Lord and Taylor cashmere bow embellished long gloves from LordandTaylor.com; Crystal teardrop necklace and earring set from Target.com; and F0868 sunglasses from Forever21.com.

Frugal Fashion: Eliza Doolittle gets colorful at London Fashion Week

ElizadoolittleYou may be bracing yourself for fall with coats, stockings and, perhaps, rain boots, but just because the weather may turn a little cool and cloudy doesn't mean your wardrobe has to follow suit. Fall weather tends to bring with it a sea of gray and other muted colors, but there' s no law that says Southern Californians have to follow suit. (Some of us find the rain to be more bearable in a hot pink raincoat.) 

British singer Eliza Doolittle faced the dreary London weather during London Fashion Week with some powerful color blocking. She chose a handful of bright colors to pair with one of her signature looks: a pair of short shorts. Doolittle attended the Christopher Kane spring 2012 runway show in cutoff shorts (this time in hot pink), a multi-hued striped T-shirt, pale orange denim jacket and blue lace-up pumps.

The look was dynamic and confident, even if it was a little reminiscent of an exploding rainbow.  Doolittle made it work by accentuating a soft orange and pink, creating what we'd like to call a cool California color palette.

For a similarly colorful T-shirt, try the blue, pink, and green American Eagle Outfitters striped crop T for $19.50 from Ae.com. A faded denim jacket would work with this look, but for more color, try the Moto western denim crop jacket in royal blue from Topshop.com for $84.

 

Elizadoolittleshirtandjacke

For a pair of funky hot pants, in a pink similar to Doolittle's, try the Taylor denim color short in hot pink from Delias.com for $14.99 or the Moto pink denim hot pants from Topshop.com for $55. Or go with a yellow pair such as the  American Eagle Outfitters Twill cuffed short for $29.50 from Ae.com or go blue with the 7 For All Mankind silky safari short in Emerald for $59 from 7forallmankind.com.

Elizadoolittleshorts

Doolittle's shoes are the icing on her outfit. She could have gone for a neutral tone to balance out the rest of her look, Elizashoeasosbut instead chose to go for it with the blue pumps. For a similar pair, get the Asos Prima peep toe lace-up wedge shoe for $45.74 from Asos.com.

If reading this sent you into a color frenzy, not to fret. Each piece can be worn separately for a playful bright pop in subtler outfits. So the next time you see gray clouds above, grab a colorful denim jacket, stand out, and brave the cold in style.

Happy shopping!

Have an outfit you're dying to buy but need a frugal alternative? Email us a picture. We're up for the challenge.

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-- Jenn Harris

twitter.com/jenn_harris_

Top photo: Eliza Doolittle arrives at Christopher Kane's show in London last week. Credit: Jonathan Short / Associated Press

Other photos:

Shirt and jacket: American Eagle Outfitters striped crop T, $19.50; Moto western denim crop jacket, $84. Credit: Ae.com; Topshop.com

Shorts: Taylor denim color short in hot pink, $14.99; Moto pink denim hot pants, $55; American Eagle Outfitters twill cuffed short, $29.50; 7 For All Mankind silky safari short, $59. Credit: Delias.com; Topshop.com; 7forallmankind.com

Shoe: Asos Prima peep toe lace-up wedge, $45.74. Credit: Asos.com

Nicki Minaj's sugary sweet VMAs necklace

Nicki

Nicki Minaj undoubtedly made the most memorable fashion statement at this year's MTV Video Music Awards. And while her mixed-media outfit is certainly not everybody's cup of tea, you gotta give her credit for going for it. Mirrored tetrahedrons, a cartoon print surgical mask, a tail, it was all there -- and more! I made a quip about how it looked like a costume shop had exploded on her, another commentator wondered if it was a reference to hurricane Irene, and MTV.com reported that Minaj was channeling her alter-ego, Harajuku Barbie.

Whatever the reasoning was, I did zero in on one thing: her ice cream cone necklace, which came from Royal/T in Culver City. The Japanese tea house/gallery/retail store is hosting a pop-up shop of ice cream cone necklaces like Minaj's, and other jewelry from Onch Movement through Sept. 8.

I recognized the piece from the Rainbows & Cowboys event I attended a couple of weeks ago at Royal/T, which featured fashion installations by designers Nony Tochterman of Petro Zillia, T-Rains (by Traver Rains, formerly of Heatherette) and Onch Movement. It was a colorful crowd, that's for sure. Tochterman had a rainbow of models lined up, each one wearing a wig and outfit in a different shade of ROY G. BIV. There was a mermaid on a half shell in one corner, Twinkies were served by waitresses in maids' uniforms.

Royalt

And Onch Movement's namesake--Onch (above left, middle)--was working the room in tights with one orange leg and one pink leg, and an ice cream necklace of his own. Onch, who doesn't divulge his real name, was a Season One contestant on Paris Hilton's MTV Show "My New BFF," and returned the second season as her "life pet."

And no, I wasn't smoking anything.

So that's where I first spotted the ice cream cone necklace, along with a lot of other Onch Movement jewelry that looked good enough to eat. My favorite? The bacon necklace. Zero calories.

-- Booth Moore

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Photos, from top: Nicki Minaj, winner of the Best Hip-Hop Video Award for "Super Bass," during the 2011 MTV Video Music Awards at Nokia Theatre L.A. LIVE on Sunday in Los Angeles (Credit: Jason Merritt/Getty Images); jewelry designer/TV personality Onch, guests and models at the "Rainbows & Cowboys" party Aug. 18. (Royal/T Cafe).

Frugal Fashion: Adele is a classic hit at the 2011 MTV VMAs

AdeleThis year's MTV Video Music Awards show was full of fashion surprises and tragic faux pas. Viewers were treated to Lady Gaga's male alter-ego "Joe" in a Brooks Brothers ensemble, Katy Perry in a Geisha-inspired Versace dress and Nicki Minaj sporting pink and yellow hair, a metallic body suit, leg warmers and fuzzy slippers. Our fashion critic Booth Moore described it best when she wrote "Nicki Minaj looked like a costume shop exploded all over her."

PHOTOS: MTV VMA fashion photo gallery

Rising far above the pack of outlandishly dressed video vixens of the night were those dressed in classic styles such as mom-to-be Beyonce Knowles in Lanvin and British songstress Adele. The multi-platinum recording artist performed her new single "Someone Like You, in a black scalloped dress by Barbara Tfank and a side ponytail.

Before her big wins, including MTV "moon men" trophies for art direction, cinematography and editing for her "Rolling in the Deep" video, Adele made quite an entrance in the perfect little black dress. She wore a three-quarter sleeve frock with tribal neck embellishment by Burberry, stockings and black velvet shoes with orange piping. The fitted waist and length of the dress hugged her curves beautifully, and  the blown-out hair is '50s glam.

For a similar plus-size little black dress, try the Sweetheart knit wrap dress for $98 from Kiyonnaclothing.com, which features a flattering deep v and fitted waist. For a dress with a little sparkle and neck detail like Adele's, get the Joan Vass beaded knit dress with square stone and glass bead neck embellishment from Neimanmarcus.com for $94, also available in plus sizes.

Adeledresses

Adele's look could work with any number of shoes you might already own. Try solid-colored pumps such as the S by Jessica Kipperx platform pump for $69.95 from DSW.com, or for shoes with a colored trim go for the  Bordello by Pleaser Women's Tempt-40 pump with gold piping for $79.95 from Endless.com.

Adeleshoes
Happy shopping!

Have an outfit you're dying to buy but need a frugal alternative? Email us a picture. We're up for the challenge.

-- Jenn Harris
Twitter.com/Jenn_Harris_

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Photo: Adele arrives at the 2011 MTV Video Music Awards Sunday at the Nokia Theatre in downtown Los Angeles. Credit: Frederic J. Brown /AFP/Getty Images.

Dress photos from left: Sweetheart knit wrap dress. Credit: Kiyonnaclothing.com; Joan Vass beaded knit dress. Credit: Neimanmarcus.com.

Shoe photos from left: S by Jessica Kipperx platform pump; Credit: DSW.com; Bordello by Pleaser Women's Tempt-40 pump; Credit: Endless.com.


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