Monday, May 30, 2011

Comment Au Go Go

After much frustration and really no help from the Google team(pictured below) I have managed to fix my comment problem. Now this a huge thing for me as now I can comment on you blogs. The longer the problem persisted the less motivated about blogging I was becoming!

However, now that all is fixed, I will be commenting on all your brilliant blogs shortly!

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Famous Last Words with Savoir Faire

Even at the end, they did it with style!

William Somerset Maugham:

"Dying is a very dull and dreary affair. And my advice to you is to have nothing whatever to do with it"

Pancho Villa: Mexican revolutionary leader:

"Don't let it end like this. Tell them I said something…"

Oscar Wilde, Sipping champagne on his deathbed:

"And now, I am dying beyond my means."

H. G. Wells:

"Go away...I'm all right."

Lawrence Oates:

British explorer, who sacrificed himself in 1912 in an attempt to save his starving companions during Scott's expedition to the Pole:

"I am just going outside and I may be some time"

Dominique Bouhours,

"I am about to, or I am going to, die; either expression is used."

Friday, May 27, 2011

No Comment!

Lately it seems that blogger is having a few problems. The latest round of frustration seems to be that I can comment on some of the blogs I am following and not others!

I still love reading your blogs, however cannot comment.

Have a good weekend all!

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Sixties Savoir Faire from Lapidus

Ted Lapidus, the 1960s fashion revolutionary whose accessible clothing earned him the epithet "designer of the street", is another couturier whom most of us are unfamiliar with.

The Parisian couturier, who is credited with pioneering the hugely successful unisex look was described in a tribute, by French president Nicolas Sarkozy as someone who had "democratised French elegance and classicism" by making fashion available to ordinary men and women.
Worn by such French celebrities in the 60’s as Brigitte Bardot and Alain Delon, he became famous in the 1960s when fashion was looking for a way of keeping up with the social changes sweeping Europe.

His quirky label, created in 1951 and now run by his son Olivier Lapidus, came to be defined by the clean lines of unisex and military clothing and, most of all, by his famous sandy-coloured safari suit, which is something Yves Saint Laurent is usually credited with creating.
"Ted was the first designer of the nouvelle vague [new wave]," Lapidus's sister, Rose Torrente-Mett, told Agence France-Presse. "The whole world knew him."

After an apprenticeship with Dior, he started his own fashion house in 1951. In 1958 he opened the Ted Lapidus boutique on the Rue Marbeuf. In 1963, he created a near scandal in the world of haute couture by forming a partnership with the manufacturer Belle Jardinière, which mass-produced his designs and sold them at its 250 budget-priced stores in France.

Lapidus proved influential outside France, too, and was the first designer to persuade Twiggy to wear a suit and tie rather than a mini-skirt. Lapidus also designed the white suit that John Lennon wore on the cover of The Beatles’ Abbey Road album.

He designed the safari suit, a style of men's suit that was popular in Australia in the 1970s. In the late 1970s the Lapidus label started to produce fashion accessories as the haute couture market declined.

What I like about Lapidus is the fact his clothes were easy to wear and relevant for the era. He captured the mood of the 60’s much more so than Rabanne and Courreges whose clothes appeared contrived and more like costume for the impending ‘space age’.

Determinedly modern, he translated the design vocabulary of haute couture into sleek, affordable clothes aimed at French consumers barely in their 20s.

“In France now, the daughters are clothing the mothers and the sons the fathers,” he said in a 1964 interview when introducing his ready-to-wear line at Macy’s.

“His clothes really fit,” it was quoted. “Even people without good bodies looked good in them because they were so well tailored. He was a pioneer in making the denim category sexy by putting some style and fit into it.”

In the 1970s he turned his energies to franchising his boutiques and licensing his name for perfumes, jewellery, watches and sunglasses.

There is often a huge discrepancy between the media coverage and attendant publicity generated by fashion shows and the visibility of the couturiers' designs on the street. Ted Lapidus aimed to bridge that gap and make haute couture more affordable, believing that, "with the right workforce, there is no reason why a factory-made garment should not be as well-produced as one coming out of a fashion house."

Lapidus also created uniforms for the Israeli women's army and China Airlines. He brought denim material, traditionally associated with the French working classes, into the world of fashion, and boasted: "My clothes make anyone look 10 pounds slimmer and 10 years younger."

His sister, Rose Torrente-Mett, who is also a fashion designer, felt Lapidus would have been even more successful if he had met someone like Pierre Bergé, whose business acumen proved crucial in the career of Yves Saint Laurent.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Down to Australia With Savoir Faire

Long dubbed “the ship that shaped the future” when launched in 1961, the S.S. Canberra of P&O lines was precisely that. Named for Canberra the capital of Australia she was originally used for line voyages to Australia and P&O’s round the world service. As mentioned in previous posts The S.S France and the S.S Oriana were ships of state for their countries and their respective companies, the Canberra took things one step forward and became the ship of the future. She was also the largest ship to be built in Britain since the Great Queens. On the immigrant trade to Australia she set standards that were hard to match.

The design was cutting edge, not only for her radical appearance with engines located aft, and twin uptakes located side by side serving as funnels. The overall appearance was one of graceful elegance and speed.

The interior design of the ship was carried out by a professional team headed by Sir Hugh Casson, and the range of rooms and facilities for Canberra's 1,690 Tourist-class passengers was of a standard higher than anything seen before on any British passenger ship.

Canberra was seen by P&O management as an opportunity to shed the line's dowdy image and usher in a new era, "...there should be abundant evidence of progressive thought and good design." Up until Canberra’s time most British lines had been rather dowdy in their interior decoration, sometimes resembling a middle class seaside hotel in England.

"We shall be disappointed if the Canberra does not transmit to her passengers the feeling, not of any sense of a revolution, but of a sharp break with all that is out dated and an imaginative surge into the future."

To create a sense of flowing space the ceilings were almost universally flat white throughout with concealed lighting. Walls panelled in dark smoky woods - Persian Walnut, Indian Laurel, Doreng Teak - often stopped short of the ceiling, increasing the sense of spaciousness. Rubber floors of staircases and hallways and the carpets of the principal public rooms were the rich blue green of the Pacific. Bright colours "flames, pinks, oranges" were kept concealed by day and brought out only at night as in the illuminations in the Bonito Club, or confined to areas like the cinema untouched by daylight.

Interior decoration was a tour de force in contemporary design. Again as in the Oriana new materials such as plastics and formica had a prominent role to play. Art was very limited with the designers using form and function as the main artistic treatment. No tapestries as in the France or large abstract panels detracted from the colours and surfaces at hand.

High up on the ship was the First Class ballroom and nightclub - the Bonito Club - overlooking the First Class swimming pool. During the day a retractable glass screen descended into the floor opening up the room to the pool terrace. By night with the screen raised it became a sophisticated nightspot.

The Crow’s Nest at the forward part of the ship was another First Class space with 41full height windows giving a superb view over the bows of the ship. The forward section was carpeted in black, gold and brown with a compass motif. Bertoia style wire chairs with yellow and white upholstery, and stylised maps of the Solent and Sydney Harbour - representing the start and finish of Canberra's regular voyage between Southampton and Australia - completed the design.

The Meridian Room was the focus of social life in First Class, a suite of open plan interconnected areas giving an impression of infinite space. The main decorative design feature of the Meridian Room was the glittering 30-foot long sculpted metal ceiling light together with white moulded fibreglass chairs fitted with removable covers in blue and green.

The Island Room was the focal point of Tourist class and was designed for many purposes because as with the Oriana, passengers were on board for an average of six weeks. A 200 foot long vibrantly coloured mural of Ceylon and the Pacific Islands gave the room its name. Wooden floors with white area rugs, white walls and ceiling with simple asymmetrically arranged glass light fittings added to the scheme. Furniture was of laminated plywood, the seats upholstered in gold fabric.

Another Tourist Class space of note was the Peacock Room which was essentially the Tourist Class Smoking Room. . The room was entirely enclosed by curving walls of Bird's Eye Maple dyed a startling peacock blue. Curtains of the same blue, highlighted with stripes of orange and gold. As with most other Tourist Class spaces the furniture was of bent plywood in rather startling geometric shapes.

Creating a revolution in interior design for future liners Canberra was definitely the shape of things to come. Stay tuned for the remainder of our ships tour!

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Tuesday Morning at the Office!

It is Tuesday Morning here and it feels like Monday. We had a holiday here in Canada yesterday, so it is back to work today.

I have a lot on my plate this week, however I am so glad that I am not coming to work to face this! As an Executive Assistant I might have been lucky to avoid this by some degree, however I do remenber typing pools (not showing my age I hope) and the girls that staffed them were amazing!

Have a great week all!

Sunday, May 22, 2011

The Power of Reflection!

I have always considered myself a reflective person in many ways. Remember the say that the 'eyes are the mirror of the soul' ? So being in a reflective mood and also short of inspiration and time to do a 'real' post, here are some mirrors to get you in the reflective mood or to mirror your soul.

Blog Widget by LinkWithin