Thursday, 30 June 2011


Out of all the avant garde designers I've come across, my undoubted favourite has got to be British born Gareth Pugh.

Pugh's design aesthetic is unmistakable; from his signature monochromatic palette, use of volume and shape to distort the human form, and  his use of unusual materials such as perspex, synthetic hair, inflated PVC 'balloons' and parachute silk.

His previous collections have been truly avant garde, with his pieces resembling architectural sculpture more than clothing. Which may be the reason he has toned down his style as of late. Pugh said himself that despite the critical acclaim of his shows, he had yet to achieve commercial success...Which may have led him to produce more wearable and practical collections.

Here are some of his early 'contemporary' pieces.

With a league of celebrity fans including Gaga, Beyonce and Minogue, Pugh has obviously struck gold with his more recent collections!

His sleeker, ready-to-wear collections are still undoubtedly Pugh, although he is playing it a lot more safe. I'm glad to see a lot of his signature design aesthetics are still in place though, such as embossed leather, elaborate weaves, fish-scale like armour and a strict colour palette of black/white/grey/gold

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Francesco Sambo's portraits give viewers a glimpse into dark worlds, worlds filled with animal/human hybrids, demonic jesters and cyberpunk monstrosities. His work is both surreal and terrifying, yet seems to avoid being threatening in any way. The juxtaposition of hellish creatures and fragile beauty can be seen in many of the portraits, giving the figures a sense of hope, despite there conditions. 


Until earlier today, I must admit that I had never heard of the make-up artist Topolino. However, after a quick Google search I knew I had to do a post.

The literal translation of the name 'Topolino' sums him up in itself...'Mickey Mouse'. Topolino lives in a fantasy world that knows no bounds, anything and everything can be applied to a face, with extraordinary results.

A true make-up ARTIST, he is unrestrained and freely lets his imagination run wild, despite how impractical the end results may be.

His unique approach and style has gained him a seat in the pantheon of greats; having collaborated with Mcqueen, Testino and Leibovitz as well as working his way onto the pages of i-D and Vogue.

You can view more of his work here


Belgian born designer Beirendonck has been at the fore-front of avant-garde fashion design for almost three decades now, and shows no sign of slowing down! His contemporary designs are heavily inspired by art, film, music and pop culture, which he fuses with ethnic and nature influences, to create exciting and playful collections.

I'll be the first to admit, a lot of his work is BIZARRE, but there's no getting away from the fact that it's undoubtedly FUN. Along with the aesthetic of his work, I love his tendency to work against the 'fashion grain', for example choosing middle-aged, hairy men to model his SS 10 collection. 

I'm also a HUGE fan of OTT accessories, and Beirendonck never fails to deliver. So far models have worn everything from gargantuan ear-muffs and top hats, right down to 3D rocket shaped padded necklaces. 

His previous collections had an urban/ethnic mix of styles, fusing day glow colours with tribal print.

Beirendonck's SS 2012 collection see's the designer take on a more formal style, with pastel suits for men and floral dresses for women. Obviously, with the Beirendonck signature stamp!

Visit his site to view more of his insane collections, guaranteed you've never seen anything like it!

Wednesday, 29 June 2011


If there is one designer who throughout the decades has re-defined the modern woman and moulded perceptions of the femme fatale more than any other, It is of course Mugler.

Over the last three decades, the Mugler house has constantly challenged feminine identity and its expression, through the use of bold silhouettes, ground breaking materials and fantasy inspired design. The masculine/feminine dichotomy is turned on its head frequently, mixing the two to create sexy womenswear with a distinctive masculine edge.I love Mugler's ability to fleet from the chic and sophisticated 'classic' style to the empowered and other-worldly.

Muglers collections are always fresh and inspired, leaving viewers on the seat edge, clueless as to what to expect next. Each collection have courted controversy in Its own unique way; from the dominatrix inspired pieces of the AW 90/91 collection to the articulated 'La Chimere' dress almost a decade later. Mugler never fails to create a sense of fantasy, he creates worlds where women are free to take on the shape of insects, aliens, ice queens and even Harley Davidsons!

With the Mugler helm recently moving to the hands of Nicola Formichetti, the label has a bright future ahead of it. Formichetti, the stylist responsible for  many of Lady Gaga's looks has impressed followers of fashion around the world with his recent collections for the French label. The brand has taken a step back to traditional tailoring and sleek, fitted cuts, albeit all with a classic Mugler twist.

Here a few of my favourite pieces from the FW 10/11 collection. Photo source

Formichetti released images of his upcoming SS 2012 collection on his own blog, and I have to say I LOVE the colour palette and the obvious early Mulger-inspired pieces.

The SS 2012 Menswear collection made Its first outing earlier this week, and I must say I love the direction Its taken. The use of armour, sequins, leather, denim and lycra is distinctly different to the FW 2011/2012 collection which saw an abundance of rubber, liquid latex and 'technical chiffon'.

Here are a few of the looks that stood out to me as the best of the collection, visit Formichetti's blog to view the rest of the collection