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Hah! It's just like me to go from a flattening down shoe stance to then talking about heels.  I blame the combination of the excessive LuisaviaROAMING and the motions of my hamster shoe wheel which jolted my memory back to Paris when I discovered that shoe designer Nicole Brundage has launched a new line for S/S 10 entitled Acrobats of God.

“I am on the edge…. I am an explorer of questions and answers, a life trend-setter…. I am a performer on the frontier of my movements, on the edge of my thoughts, my style….. I stretch between the adrenoline of flying and the satisfaction of landing. I am searching for the extraordinary in the ordinary…. I am an Acrobat of God, a diplomat of my perceptions, my own fashion, and I bring grace and style into the every-day kaleidoscope of wonder and energetic inspiration…..”

I am admittedly guffing at such a err…colourful press statement where clearly the writer has taken to the term 'creative writing' like a duck to water…

In laymen's terms the shoes from the Acrobats of God collection is Brundage's exploration of a more comfortable, wearable shoe, with oodles of elastic at her disposal to make that happen.  It is of course the abundance of this most functional yet aestheticaly appealing material; the humble elastic, that piqued my interest when I saw the line in Paris.  It's a stooopidly easy trick to give a bit of criss-cross action to a length of elastic on the ankle and thus a plain old shoe is suddenly a lot more interesting.  So Brundage has taken this simple trick and mastered it in various ways and has combined the elastic with some unpolished wood as the sturdy heel basis for her shoes.  It goes without saying that the chunky heels where the elastic is integrated into it like a support unit is my heel of choice. 

The effect is kind of like Geppetto applying his dab hand to shoe lasts and heels and forgetting to varnish them, and then a ballerina criss-crossing the elastic in different combinations.  No, that's a rubbish analogy.  I don't even know how Geppetto got in there.  It might have been the crap version of Pinocchio I watched over Christmas.  I think I'm just trying to say that there's an unfinished quality about the heels that makes the shoes seem like the footwear equivalent of the luxury foundation/basics casual clothing lines (T by Alexander Wang, DRKSHDH by Rick Owens etc etc…)… which is a good thing, because there's TONS of elastic.  Oh yeah, that was the main point of the whole damn thing.  Plenty of lush elastic.

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(Pics taken from here, Dossier, Style.IT and Design Catwalk)

>> I'm going through my usual post-Christmas ritual of checking out the sales online and thus also torturing myself with the arrivals of new season stock and whilst I was quietly sobbing to myself and lamenting the fact that I've yet to win Euro Millions (well truth be told, I've never played the lottery ever ever…), this homepage image on Luisa Viaroma, meant to herald in the new season's colourful Lanvin stock caught my eye.  I've spent the year struggling with a dodgy ankle, which you peeps have born witness to and this has spawned a re0infatuation with functional-yet-interesting footwear and a newfound love of certain trainers.  Lanvin's foray into femme trainers continues on with the new season offering up more girly satin options as demonstrated in this illustration, which may just be a random holding page image but in my mind ushers in a new season where it may be the beginning of the end of shoe porning over the highest of heels.  

The endless run of shoe-trending articles in the mags right now are throwing out revivalist optons of 'clogs', 'kitten heels', 'mid-heels' etc etc and whilst lower heels are all very well, flattening down and going complete heel-less is to me, looking quite promising.  I'll look to my dusty collection of limited edition Converse and Nikes which I accumulated in my teens, and see where they will go, and hopefully like these juicy, fruity ensembles here, any notion that trainers signify casual dowdiness will be banished forever more.  Bewarned, trainer-haters…

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From 90s statement pieces (I've bought me THAT Valentino coat…meeeeps!) from Claire Inc, I turn to the subtle staples from Aussie label All of the Above. By my vague calculation their navy sheer mesh tee and dress have collectively notched up the most wears in my wardrobe this year, accounted for by my excessive Febreezing and hand-washing.  Another navy arrival from All of the Above comes in the form of this split shoulder navy jersey blazer that I fear along with my sheer pieces will suffer the same amount of overwearing abuse and Febreezing (yes, I'm a dirty so and so who can't afford drycleaning all too often…).

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(All of the Above jacket, All of the Above sheer dress, Rosalind Keep for Oasis trench navy dress, Raf Simons knitted top, Raf Simons sheer trousers, Nicholas Kirkwood shoes)

People often comment on my 'outlandish' or 'daring' outfits but in truth, the things I wear the most are the slightly unassuming yet cleverly cut staples that form the foundations of those supposedly keraaazy outfits.  All of the Above seem to have a knack of coming up with plenty of these muted-but-interesting pieces as evident by their online S/S09-10 collection of cut-out trenches, jackets and dresses as also by their forthcoming A/W 10 collection which still uses a lot of their navy-know-how as well as introducing camel/tan as another staple colour.  There's also still some of that sheer/opaque play that first drew me to All of the Above and the print devore pattern brings in another texture into the mix.  Though my love towards navy is unlikely to waver, I am slightly intrigued by the camel trouser suit, igniting my secret desire to relive a similar ensemble that my mother rocked in the 70s.  Just need to get over my fear of the term 'trouser-suit'.  

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It was somewhat comforting to find that quite a few readers shared the same 90s memories as myself but also, the point was to enlighten everyone with their own perception of the 90s and it's interesting that a lot of the tidbits people recalled are intertwined with popular culture (tv shows, music) and 'street' fashion as it were.  Looking at the 90s as an era of 'vintage', I guess if a lot of us were born in the early 80s, or in fact, not swanning around going into designer stores, few of us are going to have encountered these gems courtesy of Claire Incorruptible.  You might have vintage showroom based in Adelaide in Australia through Claire Inc's eBay listings but Claire Incorruptible's own site is a pleasure to click through if you're not an eBayer.

In a similar vein to my beloved Fanny and the Cave (this has spurred me on to set up another visit to Fanny's cave), Claire Incorruptible is about curating a very specific vision of 'vintage'.  Another one to add to the wave of 'vintage' sellers who recognise that pieces aren't necessarily locked into a timewarp, that they have another life, another context beyond the time of origin of the pieces.  One-off gems, inaccessible designer vintage that are statement pieces from the 80s and 90s sums up Claire Inc in a hard-sell nutshell.  The detailed descriptions have enabled me to cherry pick out some choice 90s pieces centred around the fashion power players with Moschino featuring heavily in Claire Inc's inventory…

Me thinks I need this floral number on the right to match the jacket I bought in HK

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Yes to MORE bustiers please 

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I love how some of these Moschino motifs are popping up in the collections now still…
 
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I vote for this Moschino neon bandage thing to be taken as far away from raver as possible with a stiff organza shirt underneath it…

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Ah…the bags that have spawned many a copy at my local Tally Ho market… like I said before, I'm definitely up for plenty of Moshcino hardware should it come my way…

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ACCCCK…grey marle in a pyjama-esque jumpsuit by Kenzo… excuse me whilst I go count my pennies in my diminishing cracked up piggy bank // I love the simplicity of this Karl Lagerfeld cropped jacket…

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The loose tailoring that I vaguely remember 'adults' wearing in the 90s is repped here by this lovely Norma Kamali slouchy double breasted jacket and this Yohji Yamamoto tailcoat where the 'tail' has been slashed…

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I've been hoping to hap onto more Versus finds like the bargainous dress I got in New York last year but sadly it's not to be… I love the PVC neckline on this seeminly demure Versus dress // The pattern on this Jean Paul Gaultier sweater reminds me of a lava lamp… THE Xmas gift of choice when we were at school (did anyone ever break their's and get scared that the 'lava' might infect them??)

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Chain printed jackets have spun out of control in term of bid prices on eBay for some reason of late, but these real McCoys courtesy of Escada do feel like they're worth the investment…

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Sonia Rykiel says 'warning with these strappy sheos and I Heart these Escada hearty shoes…

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These Missoni abstract print gloves give good jazz hands // I'm damn charmed by Chanel's jingle jangle charms…
 
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Reminders of the unabashed girliness of the Chloe of yesteryear evident in this lace cape and detachable ruffled collar…

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Not to say that Claire Incorruptible's 80s selections haven't tempted me because this Valentino kimono-esque voluminous raincoat is too covetable a gingham cocoon to resist… as is this Yves Saint Laurent floral ruffle raincoat…

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Then there's Ungaro colour block beauty, which is scarily similar to a vintage jacket I passed up in About Glamour when I was in New York for Halloween and now I'm not only mentally kicking myself for passing it up but also completely distraught that alas a lot of Claire Inc's pieces need a few more pennies than I can muster up… pah… post Boxing Day doldrum has kicked in…

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