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Weird Fashion From History

We look back at some downright weird fashion trends…

If fashion is a cycle, where exactly have these amazing sartorial efforts been in recent centuries? From spooky and spectacular, to those that should have come with a safety warning, the history books are rife with fashion trends so outlandish, they put Gaga’s wardrobe weirdness to shame. Here’s a few that may or may not deserve another rotation on the runway.

Beak Chic
Travelling plague doctors in the 17th and 18th centuries wore masks with huge hollow beaks which they stuffed with straw, herbs and other pretty smelling things because foul odours were believed to spread disease. Even if the science is a little shoddy, and the aesthetic value a thing of nightmares, at least these quacks knew how to sport a sharp silhouette.

Verdict: Cold and flu viruses are becoming nastier year after year and we’d do well to keep our sniffles contained.

Flouncy Frocks
The premise of the first crinoline was sensible enough: the hooped cage was a lighter, cooler alternative to the heavy petticoats that ladies wore to create voluminous skirts. But when it reached the grandiose diameter of six feet, practicality gave way to peril. Crinoline-related injury ranged from entanglement in carriage wheels and fences, to catching gusts of wind and being toppled over – smart women steered clear of piers and cliffs. But most grisly of all was when thousands of people perished in a church fire when the panicked crinoline-wearing members of the congregation became jammed in the only exit.

Verdict: Paying the oversized baggage fees for six foot hoops that want to kill us? Nah.

Stuffy Gentlemen
Men were faking voluptuousness long before the pre-pubescent girls of our day. Bombasting was a 16th century trend which involved stuffing sleeves, shoulders and shirtfronts with cotton, wool, horsehair and sawdust to create exaggerated leg-of-mutton limbs and portly bellies.

Verdict: We’ll pass on the sawdust and horsehair. We’re all for a ‘comfortable’ figure, but let’s get there the delicious non-allergy-triggering way.

The Padded Posterior
Thankfully, the bustle came along in the mid-nineteenth century to drive out the deadly crinoline. A small midsection was still favourable at the time, and the bustle’s way of creating the hourglass illusion was to ramp up the rear end. The underskirt contraption directed all its oomph towards the back, where it gains plenty of perky posterior points from us.

Verdict: The Victorian’s answer to ‘bootilicious’ – zero squats (or butt implants) required. Sold!

What weird fashion do you think deserves a comeback? Let us know on our Facebook page.

Speak Chic: How To Pronounce Designer Names

The ultimate guide to hard-to-pronounce designer names…

Have you ever been tragically tongue-tied trying to master those difficult, yet delightfully-chic designer names in a room full of fashion-savvy folk? You’re not alone. Often the hot topic of conversation at the beginning, middle, and end of fashion month, this highly frowned upon fashion faux pas is an easy one to commit.

The spelling of certain names can be pretty mind-boggling, especially if they are foreign or six syllables long. It might seem like a lot of people you meet are completely immune to pronunciation blunders. But for those of us who are hit with the sinful inability to speak chic, things can get a little awkward.

To keep judgmental sneers and sniggers at bay, we’ve created a nifty cheat sheet with easy-to-sound-out phonetic pronunciations for the most commonly-massacred names in fashion. With a little bit of persistence and practice, those designer names will be rolling off the tongue in not time.
Fashion Week

Acne:  Ahk-nay

Balmain: Bahl-mahhhn

Bottega Veneta: Bo-tega Ven-e- ta

Bulgari: Ball-gah- ree

Burberry Prorsum: Bur-bur- ree Pror-some

Chanel: Shun-nel

Christian Louboutin: Christian Loo-boo- tan

Comme des Garçons: Comb dey gah-sown

Dolce & Gabbana: Dole-chay and Gabb-anah

Dries Van Noten: Drees van know-ten

Fendi: Fend-ee

Givenchy: Zjee-von- shee

Gucci: Goo-chee

Hermès: Er-mez

Hervé Léger: Air-vay Le-jay

Issey Miyake: Iss-ee mee-yah- key

Jean Paul Gaultier: Zhon Paul Go-tee- ay

Joeffer Caoc: Joe-fur Kay-ock

Junya Watanabe: Joon-ya Wah-tah- nah-bai

Lanvin: Lon-vin

Maison Martin Margiela: May-sohn Martin Mar-jhell-ah

Madame Gres: Madame Gray

Moschino: Mos-key- no

Missoni: Miss-own- ee

Monique Lhullier: Mo-neek Loo-lee- aye

Miu Miu: Mew Mew

Pierre Cardin: Pee-air Car-dain

Raf Simmons: Rauf See-mons

Rodarte: Ro-dart-taye

Swarovski: Swore-off- ski

Thakoon: Ta-koon

Yohji Yamamoto: Yo-jee Ya-ma- mo-to

Yves Saint Laurent: Eve San Lau-ron

The Art of Buying Lingerie

Got it? Flaunt it! We give you the lowdown on choosing the perfect fit…

Iconic French fashion designer, Christian Dior once said: “Without foundation there can be no fashion.” Dior also stated that “Lovely lingerie is the basis of good dressing.” We couldn’t agree more.

It’s time to get your top drawer in top form, get synonymous with the “s word,” and shop comfortably and confidently when buying lingerie. Just as you exercise caution when picking the right style of jeans for your shape, the same is needed for your undergarments. Choosing the right style of lingerie is essential if you want to achieve the perfect fit and uplift, be comfortable – and feel as good as you look!

If You’ve Got It, Flaunt It

No matter your body shape, stray from buying lingerie that’s going to highlight your “problem” areas. Instead, flaunt your assets! If you’re pear shaped and bottom heavy like most women, draw attention to your bust with a lacy underwire bra, and bring sexy back with a full brief to slim those hips and thighs. Not too endowed in the bust department? Opt for some extra oomph with an underwire push-up bra with padded cups.

If you are genetically blessed with that Marilyn Monroe hourglass figure (and with a hint of jealousy, we salute you!), strut your stuff in a smoking two-piece set. Make sure both pieces fit your figure properly, and accentuate your curves in all the right places.

Alas, not everyone is lucky enough to possess an hourglass figure (sigh). Thankfully, if we don’t have it, we can fake it! Got a boyish frame? Add feminine curves to your shape with frilly silhouettes. These girly touches will add volume to a straight figure so that it appears more curvaceous.

Last but not least. Legs for days? Emphasise those sleek stems with a high cut thong – your fashionably-fitted pants will thank you.

5 Trends that Never Go Out of Style

Whether it’s the trench coat or LBD, some trends are always in vogue…

Some trends never go out of style. There are certain items in every woman’s wardrobe that are so timeless you can pretty much wear them all year round. Here are the five essential pieces that made our shortlist.

Skinny jeans
Skinny jeans are the ultimate failsafe in every woman’s closet. Constantly being reinvented and reinterpreted, a pair of skinnies is like a reliable friend that will always be by your side.  From jet black to vibrant prints, there are a wide array of colours and patterns out there to ensure you find a style that are completely your own. We’d suggest having at least one black pair, which you can wear with pretty much anything.

Rollneck
One of the most beloved classics, a rollneck is the perfect piece to opt for when temperatures drop. Whether you go for a lightweight style that’s ideal for layering, or a chunky design perfect for extra cold days, rollnecks can be knitted, thin or thick, and available in an array of colours and prints. A classic and timeless design, Audrey Hepburn, Marilyn Monroe and Jackie Kennedy were often seen sporting a rollneck. Doesn’t that say it all?

Little black dress
If there’s one dress that every woman needs in her wardrobe, it’s the LBD. Simple and elegant, a little black dress can be worn everywhere – from the office to a night out or on a date. No matter your shape, height or style preference, you’ll find one that suits. And whether yours is sleeveless, fitted, relaxed or featuring an A-line skirt, it’ll go with almost anything! Wear yours with everything from sweet flats to towering heels or even block-heeled wedges.

Trench coat

Another piece that deserves a prime place in your capsule wardrobe is the trench coat. Whether you pair it with heels or take a more relaxed approach and opt for sneakers, the trench coat is as versatile as it is timeless. There are endless different variations of this classic coat, in every colour and print that you can imagine. Looking for longevity? A traditional beige or navy trench will go with anything and remain in your wardrobe a lifetime.

Ballet shoes
Last but in no way least, a pair of ballet pumps will never go out of style. Super comfy and easy to team with anything, this renowned style of flats can be worn both at work and on the weekend. Whether you go for a classic pink pair or versatile black, ballet shoes will finish off all your looks with ease.

Double Tap: Fashion Instagram Accounts to Follow

Fill your feed with a constant stream of stylish shots…

Be it cats, food and (erm) fabulous fashion eye candy, Instagram has become the social space that fulfils all of our guilty pleasures.

From 4th and Bleeker’s Alexandra Spencer to Harper and Harley’s Sara Donaldson, fashion bloggers are always the talk of the news feed – catapulting them into an elite style status. Between their effortless everyday looks, exotic travel snaps and creative culinary images, it’s no surprise fashion bloggers are taking Instagram by storm.

If you’re anything like us, then you’re constantly striving for the best possible Instagram feed — one that’s filled with impeccable outfits, gorgeous handbags, and perfect shoes that are worthy of the double tap. To help you fulfil your insta-dreams and avoid a fashion-induced FOMO incident this winter, we’re sharing our must-follow fashion bloggers on Instagram.
Gizele Oliveira: 245k Followers
@giizeleoliveira

Why You Should Follow
Easy on the eye with her sought-after bone structure and sultry smize, Brazilian beauty, Gizele Oliveira is carving out a name for herself in the fashion industry. Praised for her ability to pull off virtually any look, Gizele strikes just the right balance between simple staples and statement pieces.

From colour-popping cyber punk to vintage vogue, her killer style is deserving of a double tap.
Instagrammers

Margaret Zhang: 663k Followers
@margaret__zhang

Why You Should Follow
She’s a wiz behind the lens, good with words and has some smoking style to boot. The Australian multi-hyphenate (yep, she’s also a law student!) is the founder of fashion blog Shine By Three – and living proof that you can have both the beauty and the brains. A fan of layering, her personal style is oversized, raw, and deconstructed – yet polished and sophisticated.
Margaret Zhang

Chiara Ferragni: 5.9 Million Followes
@chiaraferragni

Why You Should Follow
Founder of fashion survival blog, The Blonde Salad, Chiara is not your average blogger. Not only does she tick all the boxes of an established “IT” girl, the Italian beauty built a multi-million dollar business that landed her on Forbes’ 2015 30 Under 30 list – and it doesn’t stop there. Aside from her highly-impressive CV, her personal Instagram has attracted millions of cult followers. Follow for fabulous #wardrobegoals, a glimpse into her everyday life, globetrotting adventures, and A+ selfie game.
Chiara Ferragni

So what are you waiting for? Hit ‘follow’.

Shop the Look: Back to Black

Kick off the new year in style with our edit of fashion industry’s favourite colour. It’s time to go back to black.

Kick off the new year in style with our edit of the fashion industry’s favourite colour with out edit of the hue’s hottest picks. The best part? They’re all on sale right now!

Strip things back to neutral, and deck yourself out in the one colour that will never go out of style. It’s time to go back to black.

 

SHOP THE LOOK:

1. Women’s Heels by Baldowski 2. Black Pocket Vest by Friend of Audrey 3. Si Intense by Giorgio Amani 4. Should Bag by Mangotti 5. She Said Go Jumpsuit by Sass & Bide 6. Grandiose Wide-Angle Fan Effect Mascara by Lancôme

7 Key Pieces to Invest in this Sale Period

To help you on your shopping mission, we’ve put together the top 7 items you should be investing in while they’re on special this saving season.

Who doesn’t love a good Boxing Day clearance sale? Everyone full of turkey and best of all there’s sales on everywhere! But before you go overboard on a spending spree, take the post-Christmas discount frenzy as an opportunity to invest in some key, good quality pieces that you actually need.

To help you on your shopping mission, we’ve put together the top 7 items you should be investing in while they’re on special this saving season.

  1. A Warm Coat

Let’s be honest, coats are expensive – a but a good quality coat is one thing seriously worth the extra cash. To keep warm and trendy for seasons to come, go for a classic cut that fits well across the shoulders in either a wool or leather. Not to mention, your backside will be thanking us come that dreaded August cold snap.

  1. A Good Pair of Boots

Are your boots made for walking? If the answer isn’t “Hell yes!” it’s time for an upgrade. Take a look at your current shoe-drobe situation and make a call. If you’re in desperate need of some knee-high’s, now is the time to invest! Otherwise, go for a short, leather ankle boot that will stand the test of time.

  1. A Cashmere Sweater

Every quality winter wardrobe needs a good dose of cashmere luxury.  Not only will a cosy sweater keep you warm, if properly cared for – it can last for seasons!

Check out this blog if you want to learn more about this famous fabric.

  1. Flat Out Staples

Almost as key as some quality boots, are a sturdy pair of flats. A black pair of loafers, brogues or mules styles in leather, will serve you for years to come. Paired with your favourite pair of jeans, look for ones that will become your fail-safe weekend wardrobe.

  1. Bag a Bargain

Don’t forget about your hardware – invest in a classic, medium-sized handbag that will go with just about everything! While it may be tempting to splash out on an ultra-trendy, neon pink printed designer bag that’s about a million per cent off, we advise getting your classics sorted first. A good quality leather bag is something that can last a life time if well cared for.

  1. A Fabulous Bra

Every woman needs a good support system, but we all know a good bra can set you back. Take advantage of all the end of financial year sales, and treat yourself to a set of designer lingerie. Start by knowing your measurements, each brand can run slightly different, then aim for a quality brand in a supportive style.

  1. Some Luxurious Sheets

Who doesn’t love that feeling of slipping into a freshly made bed? It’s one of life’s little luxuries, but a good quality sheet set can cost upwards of $200. Take advantage of sale time by spoiling your bed to a high thread count, it’s something you can enjoy for years to come!

Bonus: Something just for you

While it’s important to shop smarter not harder this sale time, don’t forget about you! Treat yourself to a special something – they say shopping is cheaper than therapy…

Ready to start saving? Shop all our clearance sales here.

The Luxury Edit

Our round up of the top style steals, available now.

The Best Style Steals

Whether you’re ticking off your Christmas list or looking for a treat to spoil yourself for a busy year, we’ve rounded up the top style steals on Brands Exclusive this week. Who doesn’t love a bit of luxury for less?


Shop the luxury look:
1. Top Handle Bag in Toasted Wheat by Kate Spade 2. Crystal Slip-ons by Rochas 3. Jasmin Noir by Bvlgari 4. Women’s Parsons Watch by DKNY 5. Be Near Me Jacket in Oxblood by Sass & Bide 6. Fragrant Soy Candle in Candied Vanilla by MOR 7. Hudson Bag by Chloé 8. Cut out pumps in Gold by Saint Laurent

Introducing Our New Ambassador: Archie

Meet Archie, our newest Ambassador!

Meet Archie. Catalogue model, animal rights activist, certified ‘Good Boy‘™ and our newest Ambassador. We caught up with the cutie to find out what makes him tick, and what gets his tail wagging.

You’re a natural in front of the camera! What made you get into modelling?

To be honest, I’ve always loved the spotlight. I must admit, I turn heads as I’m walking down the street and I’m often stopped on the weekend, so modelling seemed like a natural fit for me. I’m not sure if it’s my ‘too cool for school’ attitude or my wicked selection of outfits, whatever it is-the locals love it. The craft service is also definitely a bonus.

you can’t sit with us 😎

A post shared by king archie (@yung_archie) on

You look amazing. How do you keep in shape?

I walk religiously. It helps me keep in shape, and also helps clear my head. I also make friends down at the local park, the greyhounds will often chase me around but I’m very self motivated – I prefer to chase my tail.

I’m also conscious about only eating organic, healthy foods. Carrots and blueberries are my favourite! I’ll help mum cook dinner most nights – she’d be completely lost without my guidance. Mum is a vegetarian but she’s happy to poach me up some chicken, let’s be honest, who can say no to these big brown eyes.

Your schedule must be packed! What do you like to do in your down time?

When I’m not on shoots, I love to go on bush walks and try my paw at swimming (its tough, pugs don’t float!). And of course, spending time with my best friend Lenny the cat, and my beautiful girlfriend Audrey.

What trends are you most excited to see for this coming season? 

This summer is all about being bright and bold! Think warm reds, pinks and oranges. But really, I believe what’s most stylish is what you feel good in – so opt for luxurious and breathable fabrics like linen and silk.

Why are you excited to be working with Brands Exclusive for their Christmas campaign?

Nothing gets my tail wagging more than the thrill of a designer steal. So naturally, when Brands Exclusive approached me, I couldn’t say no! It just really felt like a paw in the right direction.

Follow Archie on Instagram @yung_archie

Why You Should Embrace Colour This Season

Lighten and brighten your wardrobe for summer!

Time to ditch the black

Do you find yourself constantly gravitating towards plain black? You’re not alone! While sometimes a monochrome wardrobe seems like the easier choice of a morning, we’re here to inspire you to give colour a go this Summer!

1. It’s a guaranteed mood-booster

A little colour never hurt nobody, in fact, it does quite the opposite! Research suggests wearing warm reds and pinks releases dopamine and actually boosts your mood. Alternatively, cooler blues and greens are known to have a calming affect, something we all need from time to time.

2. A tan goes with any colour

If you’re taking the dive into the rainbow, Summer is definitely the time to start. A healthy bronzed glow – store bought or otherwise – will match basically every colour under the sun. Now’s the time to jump in and try it out!

3. Take a clash course

Spots, stripes, florals – these days anything goes! Start by mixing block colours, hot pink and red are seriously trending right now. Check out Gucci and Versace’s latest show for inspiration that packs a punch.

4. Confidence is key

Let’s be honest, who doesn’t feel impossibly feminine and chic in a cute floral dress? Experiment with the what shape and colour that suits your body, and makes you feel great, because nothing looks as good as confidence!

Are you ready to ditch the black? Shop your summer fashion essentials here.