>> As soon as I read "Sound of Music inspired.." on Olympia Le-Tan's AW 13-4 review, I knew I should have eschewed review write-ups that night during Paris Fashion Week and gone along to her "Schnitzel with Noodles" presentation – always a fun respite from the formal show hub-hub of Paris. Actually, the title of the show should have been another clue for me to go – Schnitzel with Noodles – errr… only my FAVOURITE line from My FAVOURITE things?! I really felt utterly connected to Julie Andrews, when I, aged five watched her singing that line over and over again (The Sound of Music along with Grease were the sole two VHS tapes my parents put on repeat to shut us up…). She was an Austrian governess with an odd idea of playclothes and a love of noodles. I was a child who loves playclothes living above a Chinese take-out shop eating yes, lots of noodles. CONNECTION! On an unrelated schnitzel note, I had the fortune of trying out what I thought was a pretty darn amazing schnitzel in Vienna a couple of week ago, where I made an exception to my rule of not eating anything bigger than my face (all in one go…).
What I'm trying to say is that everything about Olympia Le-Tan's A/W 13-4 collection indicated that I would have been charmed off my socks had I bothered up to turn up the presentation. Now that the two-pronged lookbook has been released, with a little help from Ellen von Unwerth on the photos and Olympia's father Pierre Le-Tan on the illustrated animal heads, I'm making up for my oversight. Should I make it to Salzburg one day and realise my dream of a full-on cheesy Sound of Music tour, which would embarrass Steve and my would-be kids or grandchildren, then I can't think of a more appropriate mode of attire than Olympia's Tyrolean collection. Laden with loden and lederhosen and generally chocker block with Austrian-kitsch, like Olympia's accessories, it's all done with a bit of a literal wink. Neat sweaters, full circle skirts and Peter Pan-collared dresses are less costume-y fare and are inspired by Olympia's own sense of style, to perfectly match up with the bookish charms of Olympia's clutches, which for A/W 13-4 sees Austraian/German classics and kitsch stamps immortalised into her signature star piece. The Schnitzel with Noodles belts are a Sound of Music fetishist's necessity. I may have to get it for the sole sake of walking into a schnitzel restaurant and sitting down to another slab of breaded veal, twice the size of my face, knocking back a few bottles of Almdudler and loosening the belt as the evening wears on.
Pics from Olympia Le-Tan's Most Excellent Tumblr – like I said before, a fine example of a designer's blog
After a quick catch up on Olympia Le-Tan's well-maintained website (I still rate her Tumblr as an EXCELLENT example of how designer's blog…), it seems her e-commerce has also had a bit of a redesign rejig and looks a whole lot better for it. It has the most complete stock of her do-wop, shoop-shoop S/S 13 collection, which saw her introducing her 7inch record box bag. With a much roomier volume of 1,920 cm2, it's a much more "useful" size for carrying the daily grind of stuff, compared to her signature book clutch. It's also weirdly, slightly less expensive, although still a long way off from affordable (one day, I'll have a snoop around her studio and find out why it is OLT pieces command such lofty prices as I'm sure there is a reason why…). The one I'm seriously lusting after is the Barney Bubbles-designed The Damned 7inch bag, which certainly puts a whole new spin on the naff record bags of yesteryear which we all carried until our left shoulders ached from uneven weight distribution.