VOGUE: To Rome with love, lesbian edition

Fashion

I love a lady in a suit as you can see HERE:  Clothing thanks to Mr. Clothing an amazing New Zealand label.  Androgyny  is often best served in a suit and dapper bow tie.  However its not something seen often, and only recently is commercial fashion embracing it more!  Recently Hallenstines Mens wear featured my tattooist from Two Hands Tattoo and their female assistant – big things for little ole New Zealand.

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Vogue however is in a bigger ball game.  I love this spead featuring models Joan Smalls and Raquel Zimmermann photographed by Mario Testino for their Valentines day edition.

Vogue US has gone even further than Vogue Paris!! If we only consider the fact alone that France has only just surmounted its struggle to pass the law of marriage equality, seeing Joan Smalls and Raquel Zimmermann kiss and make out is nothing short of sheer revolution!

Raquel and Joan make a pretty decent couple, and although these suits are delicious the fashion choices the stylists made for this pictorial definitely follow generic clichés/ steriotypes. 
Whenever Hollywood or fashion do an inter-racial lesbian theme/shoot the black female is always the butch one… always.
Also, if Joan had worn sneakers with her pants suits, I would’ve almost been inclined to say that the inspiration for Joan’s character was Ellen DeGeneres.

Seriously boots or sneakers would have been a MUCH better choice!

From what I can gather, Joan Smalls and Raquel Zimmermann are both heterosexual. However one of the most notorious relationships between two high profile models involves Freha Beja Erichsenand and Arizona Muse.
It would’ve been pretty interesting seeing them in this pictorial instead of Joan and Raquel. Allot of respect to Anna Wintour published this in spite of the fact that not even half of the US’ recognize marriage equality.

May this set an example for the future! Fashion or otherwise.

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Style: The response to the terror of invisibility!

Fashion
Style: The response to the terror of invisibility!

“Style is a response to the terror of invisibility and isolation — a wish for inclusion.” – Lisa Cohen, Three Lives

I’ve a particular affinity to this quote. For some weird and unknown to me reason, I have this irrational fear.
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To not be noticed, to be invisible, isolated and ignored are real fears for me. The flip side of this is that I want to be remembered for making an impact, and a difference to the world and people’s lives.  I was having a discussion with someone recently and we were talking about being dorky children.  The weird kids at school and the oddly awkward teenager.

She said:  “When did you become awesome?!

This really took me by surprise.  And then I tried to think when in my mind I’d transformed from an ugly duckling and a couldn’t pin point any moment.  All I think the difference is, is Self Confidence. I want everyone to have that “I’m awesome!!” feeling and moment in life.  I thought I’d write a bit about it because I want share the power of self confidence.  I still feel like an ugly dorky uncoordinated kid all the time but I believe I have the confidence to pull it off.

Coco Chanel

“Success is most often achieved by those who don’t know that failure is inevitable.”
― Coco Chanel, Believing in Ourselves: The Wisdom of Women

Bette Davis

“The key to life is accepting challenges. Once someone stops doing this, he’s dead.”
― Bette Davis

Don’t ever be scared to make a statement, to take a fashion risk wear something in super bright colours, or super dark sultry. Life is your adventure don’t let anyone or anything hold you back.

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Black Box Boutique: Georgia Anne

Fashion

Black Box Boutique is a cute wee place in Grey Lynn. It stocks numerous brands of clothing from very casual through to gorgeous evening wear.  Specifically these beautiful pieces by Georgia Alice.  Her line stocked in the Black Box Boutique is beautiful and I immediately fell in love.  All monochromatic, it consisted of tailored skirts, both in white 3 dimensional brocade print and my staple favourite – the leather/vynal mini skirt. This jacket that matches I completely lusted after, as it would have looked fantastic with my completely black and white outfit I was wearing today!

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Some of these items are available on-line Black Box Boutique website for pre-order but if you want to get in ahead of the masses pop into the Grey Lynn shop and pick up these beautifully made items yourself now – Before I do!!!  I’ve linked my favourites below:

Georgia Alice Pallas Skirt – Fabric, shape = win!

Georgia Alice Atlantis Shirt – Semi sheer, looks rad half tucked in.
I love the rest of the curiosities in the store also so I just had to include pictures I took of them in this post too before signing off!

SKULL candles!!!! Okay enough shouting.. but I, much like Kat von D, love skulls and have a small collection myself. (She’s only got an art gallery exhibition full of them) However Black Box Boutique have lots, silver, black, orange etc and in all different sizes. So-In-Love!  Perfect for your gothic anti-valentines presents!

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This week, & what I wore today: WIWT

Fashion

Its mid week and raining.  As a total sunshine baby sometimes I feel like curling up with a blanket and waiting till the sun comes back out.  Today is a little like that not to mention I’ve a sore throat.  However writing always helps!!

Today its Black Milk Beetle-juice leggings, and a white Linear Sleeveless Biker Jacket from Top Shop

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Always keep reminding yourself! You Are AMAZING, and don’t you for get that!

This week I did quite a few shows.  The Auckland Pride Gala which was amazing.  Showcasing all acts from the Festivals coming weeks it ran smoothly and the audience was my favourite, loud and well lubricated! Just perfect.  Feathers and lace-fronts everywhere.  We nearly forgot to take selfies, which would have been a shame with myself and my Queerlesque MC wearing complimenting gowns!

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Things I love Thursday!!

burlesque, events, Fashion, things i love thursday

Some 2012 Things I love Thursday posts Here and Here

It’s about time I wrote another of these… I’ve been running around like a headless chicken working my butt off as a producer, performer, model, and Blogger, its really time that I stopped and smelled the roses… So today here are all the things I am thankful for!  I’m loving my life right now so its the opportune time to stop and say thank you to the Universe and all the amazing people I love and love to have around! Click in to see more!

Family time…  I saw a cute quote the other day that said ” Friends: When can I come over?, Close friends: I’m coming over. Best friends: In your living room already”  It really does have an element of truth.  I love a busy house full of people, laughing, chilling, and hanging out having fun!

Photo by Aych

Food. I know this seems a weird thing to put on my “Things I love” list since I’m doing a ReBoot Detox right now. Fruit and veggies, I love them I have to confess and its awesome having access to such a huge variety of delicious fresh sweet NOMMY food that’s so so good for my body.  Bring on the next week of Juicing!

 
  

Pride!  Its one day till the Pride Gala, the opening of the Auckland Pride festival the first LGBTI celebration we have had in Auckland since 2003. (I think that was the last one??) Its so exciting to see the whole community working so hard to put everything together, events, shows, parade floats, masses of people, costumes, banners and everything social media that goes with it!  I’m doing heaps and am loving every moment of it!!


Photos, sunsets, museums, parks and gardens.  I spent yesterday afternoon/ evening in Auckland domain with two photographers and a make-up artist.  The outcomes so far have been amazing… I am very excited about the rest of the day’s sets too.  Here is a sneaky peek of me being a landlocked mermaid princess…

Photography by Natasha Hing more coming soon by Moppie!

Surprises and Photos! Find new photos that haven’t been published yet lurking in my inbox and getting an exciting surprise to boot!! I’m Judging Miss Pin-Up New Zealand at the Very Vintage Day Out in April.  HOW EXCITING!

Photography by Miss T Pin-Ups

Going out and dressing up!  There is something fantastical about getting all dressed up to go out.  It has its similarity’s to getting into costume to go on stage I suppose.  The difference being the stage is life and the cast is YOU! I love to make a great first impression and there’s no better way to do it than colour and sparkles. Here’s some images for the Great Burlesque Dinner (International style)!  Thanks to Red Rascal Productions

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Travel Blog: Philippines

adventure, Fashion, photography, Travel

Wow its almost the end of three weeks and its been mental.  Bush, beach, boutiques, boots, bling, booze, and hardly any vegetables would be the most exciting words from the trip so far!

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I may have really over done it on shoes, but on average with each pair costing less than $50 NZD each I can see myself regularly returning to the Philippines to refresh my shoe wardrobe! (Shoe-drobe?! – Do these exist, if so I need one!)  Brands co-exist almost seamlessly with fakes, imitations  knock-offs, and end of line or faulty stock.  Hemez, Luis Vittun, Coochi, to name a few, the difference between home and here being that these local really know the difference as I really takes an experienced eye to tell. The other difference is the price, a knock off goes for 1/10 of the price of the real thing.  If you are in favour of supporting industry,  it makes justifying the expense a hard decision.

I think I’ll buy one of these first, sans the baby however, Yes??

The country is absolutely gorgeous! Sunsets, trees, misty mountains, sugar cane fields and rice paddys! I think here a picture says more than a thousand words. See for yourself and if you have the opportunity to visit – DO!  Get out of the city as well and visit some of the surrounding cities, towns and beaches!

Enjoy… I can’t wait to get home to my friends, my family!
xxx

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MisteR Winter 2013: Androgynous Fashion – Dynamic Duo

Fashion

Last Thursday I was invited to the Blomfield showroom to preview the MisteR Clothing 2013 Dynamic Duo Winter collection.  As a girl with a very high- femme style I went along with the preconception that these would all be clothes I’d like to see on a partner or date.

 Dapper gents, Androgynous creatures of all kinds, bois, butches and all ye gentle-types pay attention here:  You need this ON you!!
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I decided that I would be no good at modelling for Showroom snaps I just had to bring along the ultimate fashion accessory of my own!  Enter Dapper boi-friend as seen here in a MisteR Summer 2011/2012 Alex Jacket with amazing  and stylistic MusiQ Soulchild himself at Auckland’s own Town Hall.

Nothing like fashion previews and a glass of champagne on a Thursday afternoon! I Interviewed this andro MisteR Clothing fan here below for you.  The inside scoop on what to put on your wishlist!  NOW!

I was very excited to see what kind of designs MisteR Clothing are putting out for next year.  With their bold designs they’ve really taken up the challenge to out do their previous season.  
As always their designs jumped out at me, specially the fact that when you get me into a store I have the attention span of a goldfish. Then opening up the booklet, my eyes lit up with nerd light when I saw the Marvel and DC comic references. 
(Batman and The Avengers  I.e.The Riddler jacket which is deliciousness on Mr Ganganam -aka Denise) 
It really appealed perfectly to my inner geek!!

The designs are very andro friendly with a very soft but classy masculine feel, easy to slot into your existing wardrobe.  You can wear it looking classy or dress it down to look swag.  

My favourite piece outside of the suits was the simple but clever cluff-links. (Available NOW for you last minute Xmas shopping)  Made in silver they stand out even on a bold red Archangel or purple Storm cotton shirts. The brooch looks amazing clipped through a tie or jacket lapel.

After gushing over the Riddler bow-tie collection (specifically the Riddler and Marvel) I could have quite easily snuck them all into a pocket and slipped out of the Blomfield showroom (would have been totally obvious) fulfilling my bow-tie obsession!

The MisteR shoes are NZ made and cast off a vintage sneaker mold.  Although different to any thing in my current sneaker collection, the Riddler shoes make for an excellent addition.

MisteR were very nice and gave us one of their signature Scissor Brooches on leaving.  I think I’ll be adding the Storm Dress to my collection to go with it!! 

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Not your normal Job: Cathy Tree Costumier

burlesque, Fashion, Interview

Burlesque Dancers are known for their amazing costumes, Swarovski crystals from head to toe, corsets and glamour.  But of course this doesn’t all happen by chance and not all of us are talented enough to make them ourselves.  New Zealand is very fortunate to have an amazing handful of Costumiers and special effects artists.  With companies like Weta Workshop and the Wearable Arts Awards (WOW) Wellington really does have talent!  You might have seen me having proverbial kittens on Social Media over the amazing sparkly goodness which is my new prized costume possession… Thanks Cathy!! xx  

What does a Gal like you do on a normal day “at work”?

My days can really change from day to day!  So really in one day I could do any number of the following things….  Click in to see more & pictures!!!
work on texture samples, develop designs on paper and with fabric, pattern make, sew, make headdresses, research new costumes, sketch, shop online and in town for products, have fittings, source items for photo shoots, meet with photographers makeup artists models and more!
If I’m working on a film job, I will be at the film studio or workshop all day.  Sometimes I will just be working in a production line making components for costumes, and other times developing ideas with the team, researching, figuring out how to make something work that has come from the design team. 
When I work at Weta I could be working with anything from silk, to armour, to foam latex creature suits!
Occasionally I work on set and take care of the costumes on and off the actors. 

How did you get into the industry and what made you decide this is what you wanted to make a living out of?
I was a young teenager when I realised there was such a thing as costume design, and that fashion wasn’t really the thing for me.  And so from then on, costuming has been my focus!
So often the way to get jobs in the industry is about who you know.  So a lot of energy often gets put into networking and trying to meet people and get your name out there. It can sometimes take years before you will get called regularly for work.  But others can hit the jackpot without much work, just by being in the right place at the right time.
I just kept putting myself out there and met a lot of people in the industry and the work starting to come in.
It’s often a struggle, with work being off and on as jobs come and go, but it’s what I love to do, and I’ve really never done anything else.  It’s what I’m passionate about and yes I have moments of “what am I doing?” but then I work on something wonderful and remember why I love doing what I do.  It can be incredibly rewarding when you get to see your work on a character or client, and you see the way it can affect them positively and develop their character’s personality or performance.  It’s that kind of thing that really keeps you wanting more. 

What tips would you give new others who might be interested in a similar career?

Network.  Be confident but not pushy.  Respect your peers and you will learn a lot from them.  Work hard towards what you want to achieve.  Know that you don’t have to be good at everything, and maybe focus on what you love and are good at. Always remember there is more to learn.  If it’s a nightmare of a job, remember it’s only a film/show/act and it will be over soon.  Don’t spread yourself too thin, and learn to delegate where you can.  Know your limits.  Research and keep an eye on what’s going on out there to keep inspired and up with the play.  If you get turned down for a job, remember there are more out there and keep trying, that one wasn’t for you because there’s something else out there waiting for you!  Enjoy what you do! 

When did you discover there was life outside the corporate 9-5 Office grind?  Was there a specific event or epiphany that brought that about?
I guess it more a case of, I didn’t even think about the corporate grind.  I have never been a part of it.  And sometimes when I’ve been working 16+hr days on a costume job, for weeks on end, I almost forget there is another world outside of the workroom! 

Have you ever struggled to get what you do at work or out of work taken seriously?
I have had a lot of people not understand what it is I do.  They think I just gallivant around with the stars and looking at pretty fabrics, drinking coffee.  It’s a very hard job at times, working very long hours, meeting clients’ needs and trying to keep enough work coming in.  Even work peers in different areas can really have a misconception of costuming, sometimes coming across that they think they’re much more of a professional.  It can be a real struggle to remind people that it takes a lot of years of experience to be able to achieve the results required.
It also happens that sometimes potential clients really don’t understand why it costs hundreds of dollars for a made to measure corset, for example, compared to buying a cheap and nasty factory made one.  There can be a general lack of understanding around what it actually takes to design, pattern make, fit, construct, dye, embellish and finish a costume.  That’s a lot of hours of work!  Even preparing quotes and meeting with clients is actually a time consuming part of the job, not just funsies to sit around and talk about pretty things!  It’s all work, and often hard work!  People can forget that and be very blase about your time, leaving you hanging around when they are a no-show to a booked appointment. 

There is a lot of work that I do “behind the scenes” to get a costume to a level where it is ready to present or shoot.  Even styling a photo shoot isn’t as simple as just turning up and dressing someone in a costume.  It can take days to source complementary pieces of clothing for the model/s and extras (if there are any), make accessories, find props, meet with makeup artists to discuss the look and so much more.  There is so much involved in creating the layers that make up a final image.  You may not notice all the details at first glance, but if they weren’t there, the picture would look a little bare.   It takes hard work, practice and a good eye to really make it happen.
Your work is very specialized – is this something you’ve learned in an education system or did you fall into it?
I grew up in a creative family and was taught how to sew and many other creative procecsses by my Mother, Grandmothers and Aunty.  I have always been creative and into crafts and making garments, so I have also taught myself a lot by trial and error, research and also learned from my peers.
I have studied a few papers at fashion school, which have been helpful, but really the most I have learned has been self taught and learning on the job.  Gaining skills taught by my colleagues and a whole lot of having to figuring out how to do something and make it work.

What effect has the Internet had on the way that you work?

The internet has become a fantastic way for me to research for designs, learn about and purchase new and hard to find products, connect with other costumiers and corset makers out there and so much more!  It really is an invaluable tool for me every day!  A little addictive and distracting at times, but I would find it hard to be without it now!


What is the biggest, most exciting project you’ve worked on / are most proud of?
To be honest, I think I am lucky in that so many projects that comes along seem to be the next greatest thing I get to do!  I have great clients that come to me with wonderful ideas that they want me to develop which is so exciting!  Every project seems to bring new challenges, new colour combination and fun experiences with new people and old friends!  It can vary so much, especially working between the film world and one on one with clients, it’s all fulfilling in different ways. 
One of my favourite pieces I’ve created purely for the sake of making something I want to, is my 2006 WOW entry, She Looks Good in a Sack. 


Have you got anything exciting in the pipeline that you would like to share with us?
I have many designs that I want to start working on in the coming months…. a couple of clients that have elaborate costumes they want me to design for their performances, as well as a few of my own more costume art pieces that I’ve been wanting to get out of my system!  Lots of texture, layering and embellishments!  Yum!!!  And then I have a bunch of photographers I want to work with and develop some new shoots!  Exciting!

You can follow Cathy and all her amazing creations here:https://twitter.com/CathyTreeHarris
http://instagram.com/cathytree
http://cathytreeharris.com/
https://www.facebook.com/cathytreecostumier
http://pinterest.com/cathytree/
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This week, what I did and what I wore: WIDTW WIWT

events, Fashion

I’m trying to to talk nonsense too often but sometimes you see acronyms all over social media and just think OMG what on earth does that mean.  Too not appear silly or abusing the “Lazy-Web” often I’ve googled terms and quite quickly been able to find an answer.  Thank goodness, because there’s nothing more embarrassing then looking silly on the internet – Right?! *cough*
However I’m just going to stick with “What I did this week!” Sound simple enough?  I’ll start off with photos from the AUT Rookie Fashion show.  It was amazing.. with an wiggly runway meaning pretty much everyone got a fantastic view, hosted in Shed 15 on Lower Wellesly Street.  A huge venue but perfect to cater to the massive crowd who came out to support.  Each designer showed about 5 pieces and the models were fantastically choreographed and stunning.

 By comparison The NZ Fashion Tech show was hosted in the Freemans Bay community center and of the whole show there were only 3 really stand out collections of 3 pieces and a Kleenex Paper Dress.  The top three collections wouldn’t have looked out of place at the AUT Rookie show at all. Congratulations to them all for graduating another year of hard slog, creation, stress planning and design!  We can’t wait to see next season.

 I attended the Eco-Store Fashion Show – 540  Garments all made of recycled or re-purposed fabric and clothing.  Beautiful for summer and I can totally see my self wearing the pink collar below. Its gorgeous!

 Some gratuitous cell phone photography – of course. Documenting life from the Fashion Front Row, or at least the Miss Phlossy Roxx version!

  And Supporting Movember – PLEASE DONATE HERE:  http://mosista.co/teamfauxstache

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The Vodafone New Zealand Music Awards

Fashion, New Zealand, photography, Writing

I was at the 2012 Music Awards and had an amazing time!  It was my third music awards and this time I was very lucky to be wearing a fabulous outfit covered in tiny zipper bows from DMONIC INTENT.  Having my amazing g/f with me to take photos on the red carpet I was busy interviewing and documenting crazy comments from the celebrities walking the carpet and what they wore.

It was exhilarating and although my feet weren’t my friends by the end of the night it was another confirmation that media crew do really work hard and things never stop despite the full on play hard work hard ethic.  You just don’t know who is going to be standing next to you! More of our photos from the night can be found here, and I’ll have a blog with quotes and interviews coming very very soon!  Keep your eyes peeled or SUBSCRIBE!!  🙂 xxx

Myself and Evelyn Ebrey

Kimbra and her band
Kimbra looking stunning!
Ruby Frost looking gorgeous!
Tim Phin and Tina Moore from Remix Magasine
The GC’s Tame Noema and Jamie Ridge
The gorgeous Zowie
Gin Wigmore
Gin and her band looking Fantastic
Tamati Coffey and Petra Bagust
Guy Williams hosting on the Music Awards red carpet
Shavaughn Ruakere
Starboy aka Matt Bowden looking great with his crew
Dane Rumble
Stop SHARK FINNING
Keisha Castle-Hughes
The notorious Homebrew Crew
The Sweet Mix Kids Presenting for the Awards
Jon Toogood and Julia Deans
Colin Mathura-Jeffree
Annabel Fay
Hollie Smith
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