>> This isn't up to date.  This isn't particularly lightening-quick, up-to-date, instantaneous and any other buzzwords people like to tack onto bloggers because some of you will have seen this second lingerie collection by Kiwi label Lonely Hearts.  This is however PRECISELY what I wish to be wearing right now with perhaps a white shirt.  I'm talking about this PRECISE moment – 11.44am in the UK.  In my sun swooping apartment where the pleather sofa is threatening to stick to my back and bum.  This isn't my 'Oh look at me, I'm getting raunchy in some cute undies."  This is just one moment of stripping down (of course, the lingerie is good for wearing beyond this point with more things on top of them…).  My brain turned to the collection when I remembered that Ella Sarjant, who used to design at my other lingerie fave Stella McCartney is now designing this Lonely by Lonely hearts lingerie, traces of her design path, evident in the pieces…

Just gotta take away the stockings… the cardis…the waistcoats…those blankets… the glasses that would be clearly too big for my heavy-prescription eyes… I'll keep the collars on though….

And this is the ONLY time when I am advocating the stripping down of garments… really, just this one moment…

On a more informative note, you can pre-order some of this stuff from La Dama

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I associate a lot of my vintage buying with that familiar USPS logo.  Envelopes and boxes (with a satisfying rip strip…) branded with those red stripes and blue logo.  Reason being that a lot of my vintage does come from across the Atlantic.  At the height of my eBay habit, which I nurtured in my last year of uni when I couldn't leave the house because of a dissertation, I had three-four packages arriving a week. 

Nowadays, I still get those packages which more often than not are slapped with some sort of customs fee charge and a little card telling me to trollop down to Royal College Street (Camden…so close but SO FAR at the same time…).  This week, a different logo appeared on my doorstep sans charges (phew…)… EMS.  Hmm…. that rings a bell in my eBay brain.  That's the mail service that fake handbag/trainers/cutesy clothes from China use to send their wares quickly.  Fortunately there's no "Chanel Style,Take me with you Quilted Chain Bag – Black" in the box though.  Instead, I find pieces of vintage all the way from….. Beijing!

Some of you vintage eBay shop aficionados will know that The Olive Shoppe, once based in California has moved base all the way to China as well as set up a brand spanking new website.  Elaine, the owner, like many of the new-gen vintage sellers has a knack for finding unconventional pieces which in turn, she presents in unconventional ways.  I'm not sure whether it's the new style of photography on the website, the sum of all the pieces she currently has but the styling in all her wares has suddenly been amped up a heck of a lot to a degree where I find myself wanting everything and my eyes are being opened up to ways to wear it erstwhile.  I like the fact that they also present each item in more kosher ways too so that even if you took away the patterned tights, the cool shoe/sock combos and the amazing layers, you're still left with the a piece of unexpected vintage that don't necessarily traverse to obvious trends either.  Or at least it doesn't look obvious when styled in the deft hands of Elaine…

I normally pick out 25% of stock that I'm into… here I raided a good 60% of it… ah… the clarity of a good percentage… takes the frippery out of the 'Like/Dislike' question…

The pieces don't really traverse through obvious decadian roads and whilst pieces are 'worn', the important thing about each piece is something 'special' that stands out – a chunky zipper, embroidery on the arms, an interesting knit pattern or an exaggerated shape…

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Elaine has also bought in some new labels, most of which are from Bangkok… on a Thai-related note, I seem to be finding more and more Indonesia/Thailand labels that are coming through… a mini trip to Bangkok me thinks tacked onto my next jaunt back to Hong Kong will be necessary.  Here are pieces from Bangkok labels One Hidden Agenda and Triptych… both don't seem to have websites which just makes curiosity grow…

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So in the EMS package was this ruched raspberry dress where the ruching is very tight and concentrated in the centre.  I got more vintage happy the last time I was in New York (correction, I was escaping into vintage stores in Brooklyn to get some air-con relief…) as the jacket and shorts are all from New York. 

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(With ASOS leopard print skirt, vintage woven shorts, vintage orange/red plaid jacket, Miu Miu shoes)

Then there's this sheer white jacket with satin collars and cuffs that for some reason, reminded me of a more luxurious version of a lab coat.  This is me playing at being a school lab technician.  No, not the science teacher as they don't get to do the fun stuff like prepping chemicals and yelling at people for breaking the beakers…

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(With Uniqlo sweatshirt, vintage shirt, Roberta Furlanetto white dress, Alexander Wang wedges, Moscot sunglasses)

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Untitledcov >> It seems that the more 'we' bang on about the so-called decline of print, the more it come backs with a newly refreshed mode of combat by way of new magazine titles.  That 'we' isn't me by the way even if people love to insist questions relating to the 'death of print' upon me with a vengeance. 

The titles that are coming up new come with buoyant enthusiasm rather than a thirst for large scale print runs.  Perhaps it's not an intended fixer but it definitely is a reaction where new publishers are coming up with different solutions for print – print on demand, smaller print runs or just straight forward zine-style production.  The subject matter at hand can therefore get more and more niche and personal.  And so the newsagent on Old Compton Street continues to be more crammed (because somehow they get EVERYTHING) and you end up picking up titles in boutiques that won't be distributed everywhere.  The magazine shelf at home (well, my home anyway…) isn't stuffed with titles in all the same sizes but instead becomes a hotchpotch of zines, mooks and creative paper usage.   

In comes Untitled.  Founded and edited by Junsuke Yamasaki (editor of Dazed Japan…), it's a fashion biannual that celebrates all facets of young and creative fashion.  "I'm always excited about young designers collection which has pure creative mind and not too commercial. Also there's no one publishing magazines focusing on young designers, so I was sure that this untitled will be the strongest media for supporting young designers (except websites such as Diane and you!)", explains Yamasaki. 

Awww… shucks… certainly, the page space to celebrate grassroots fashion isn't growing so this of course comes with a big thumbs up from me.  Anna Trevelyan, assistant of Nicola Formichetti and super sweetheart stylist and fashion edtior of Untitled also concurs: "I just want people to be able to have fun with fashion, and be imaginitive and creative with no restrictions! I don't think there's too many platforms for people to do that right now so we wanted to make a magazine with a youthful and fresh attitude towards what creativity and fashion means."

Untitled #0 is out now in limited stores in Japan but will be making its way over to London, New York, LA, Paris, Antwerp and Hong Kong soon with a bigger launch for Untitled #1 (more pages, more content) planned.  Consider this the soft launch then which leaves me intrigued as to who they will investigate in the next issue…

The first issue has been celebrated with the ultimate amazing magazine freebie… STICKERS (did anyone use to get the Girl Talk stickers?).  Now if only they were in feltie format…

Stickers by Brian Lichtenberg, Christopher Shannon, David Lindwall. Reborn 1982, Katie Eary, Lotta Volkova, Mikio Sakabe, Writtenafterwards…

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Rozalb de Mura – Photography Ben Toms, Styling Robbie Spencer // Rachael Barrett – Photography Yasunari Kikumi, Styling Anna Trevelyan

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Photography Hedi Slimane, Styling Anna Trevelyan // Photography Leon Mark, Styling Stevie Westgarth

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Photography Sharif Hamza, Styling Anna Trevelyan

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I'm working through the weekend (when am I NOT?) so posting will be sporadic but I am leaving you with a link that should take a good hour or so to browse through should you feel inspired.  First up, I don't use Flickr enough as a source of inspiration because a) it sucks me in so badly that climbing out from a Flickr vortex is a hardship in itself and b) sometimes I just don't know where to begin if random search terms yields nothing.  Milla emailed me regarding her brand new label Mechant B√©b√© (naughty baby…) and after a bit of Google digging, it turns out Milla from Taiwan has a wonderful personal style, lovingly documented on her Flickr account (if you don't know what the Chinese characters mean, just do random clicking as you'll yield good style porn in most of her sets…).  For a start, it feeeeels personal as opposed to indoctrinated and yes, I suppose I see some of my own tangents of style in her's which always helps.  She also has a blog which has most of those pics too…  

So that's the browsing for ya.  Next up, her label.  I'm glad to finally be getting a nice group of names of independent labels from South East Asia… I'm not sure if it's do with the fact that I'm slow on the uptake or that there has been an influx of labels in the past two years.  The even better thing is they're all doing quite different things and so we have Mechant B√©b√©, a label which will launch collections in project-form – i.e. not regularly. 

For the first collection, 'Virgin Rebirth', we have all those things that are still making my heart beat a bit faster – pastel colours, sheer pieces, mix up of textiles and a romantic spirit that is reined in by some form of shape/structure in the designs.  These are then added to some hazy yellow-tinged lookbook images and an intention that of course references all those things that infiltrate the brain of so many Lula-ites (Virgin Suicides, Picnic at Hanging Rock, Lolita).  If I'm sounding a tad jaded, I'm going to check myself for that.  There is nothing wrong with any of that…

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What I did question slightly were the prices as all pieces are available via an e-shop with dresses topping at about USD750.  Going back to Milla with this question and reading her manifesto again, as a starting project, all pieces are handmade by her and she has specifically chosen extremely expensive fabrics as there are only one or two pieces of everything.  I begin the understand the prices a little bit more when you remove the yellow haziness and look at the up-close shots of the construction, evident especially in the panelled dresses which mix mesh, vintage lace and tie-dye florals.  A beautiful yet selfish beginning to a label perhaps.  That said, I'm interested to see what this naughty baby will come up with next…

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