"Art enables us to find ourselves and lose ourselves at the same time."

~ Thomas Merton

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Mr. Porter: The Urban Sophisticate

April 6th, 2011

Toronto city dwellers know raccoons as those nasty pests that knock over their green bins, annoy their cats, and mess around on their rooftops. So when Porter chose a raccoon as their mascot, they could have taken it in the wrong direction. But dare I say, that raccoon is actually quite endearing. Take this ad, for example:

Porter ad

Can you identify the inspirations for these works of “art”?

Mr. Porter, the quintessential urban dweller, a sophisticated and cultured raccoon – is a far cry from the little (or fat; I didn’t see it) bugger who repeatedly knocked down my organics bin in the winter, and a whimsical, humourous approach that sets the airline apart from all the others. Porter ads always catch my eye, and this one in particular made an art lover like me smile.

By the way, you have until tomorrow to get 30% off your Porter flight so in case you need to take a trip, book it now! (no, I’m not making commissions)

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Vincent Van Gogh, meet Felicity Brown

March 31st, 2011

Vincent Van Gogh - Starry Night

Oops, I had completely forgotten. It’s Vincent Van Gogh‘s birthday! The quintessential starving artist, Van Gogh had a tough life – chronically plagued with mental and physical illness – but he was able to produce some absolutely incredible works of art. One of my personal favourites is The Starry Night, painted in 1889 during his stay at a hospital and former monastery in Saint Rémy. So I was delighted when I saw photos of the Fashion East show for Spring 2011. Among the designers who showed was Felicity Brown, whose swirling application of raw-edged silk in vibrant colours is reminiscent of the movement in Van Gogh’s starlit sky. See for yourself:

Vincent Van Gogh - The Starry Night

The Starry Night (1889)

Felicity Brown SS11

Felicity Brown SS11, via Style.com

If you wish to procure the wearable equivalent to Van Gogh’s painterly aesthetic, Brown’s stunning dresses are available at Barneys.

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Fashion is Danger

March 19th, 2011

I did say this blog would contain things other than food, didn’t I? In the interest of keeping my promises, let’s get started on that!

While food for me has often been about exploring ideas one (or a few) at a time, fashion and design are so much a part of my background and training that sometimes, it’s difficult to know where to begin. Where I find them similar is in the editing and building of a story – the courses in a meal, the outfits in a collection.

Since tomorrow is the first day of spring (hooray! It feels like spring already and I am loving it!) I’ll be covering off some of the big trends for the spring/summer season very soon. But in the meantime, here’s a video that always makes me smile.

Also, at 1:02 is a brief reference to one of the fashion trends for this season… can you identify it?

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