Kim Kardashian’s Style, Improved?

Whilst reading through my list of favourite blogs this morning I came across a post on Style Snooper Dan’s site, in which he refers to Kim Kardashian’s style evolution of 2013 as the ‘Most Improved’. Of course style, like beauty, is subjective. Whilst the general consensus would have it that, since the reality TV star has been linked with Kanye West, her style has seen many better days, the fashion world appears to be embracing her more so than ever.

Needless to say, having a ‘Fashion God’ as a fiance, who has a very special and personal relationship with the likes of hash tag worthy Givenchy designer Ricardo Tisci, won’t hurt your fashion career and presence in the industry. Let’s be honest, Kim’s beauty, body and sex appeal are what put her in the face of the media. She’s no Miroslava Duma or Anna Dello Russo or any other street style star papped to popularity by street style photographers because of their strong sense of style. So, besides the fashion god fiance and the acceptance from fashion’s cream of the crop, such as the aforementioned Ricardo Tisci, Carine Roitfield and praise from the likes of fashion bloggers such as Style Snooper Dan, my ultimate question is, has Kim’s style REALLY improved?

As Keeping Up With the Kardashian’s began to establish itself as a staple on Channel E and Kim’s face slowly and miraculously began to change its shape, her style also took on a new form too. In the first series or so of KUWTK, Kim would showcase her life hanging about the cluttered and mis-match Kardashian-Jenner home wearing the tacky Clobber, Jane Norman and Bay Trading (remember Bay Trading?!) type garb we all stopped wearing when we left secondary school. At this point Kim definitely needed to revisit her image. Girls dressed head to toe in Primark could have put together a more chic ensemble than what she was rocking at this point in her career. 

However, as expected, as the fame and the money came rolling in, no doubt a stylist rolled in with it and this would be when Kim became ‘stylish’. She started to adopt a far more stylish approach to her dress, which would see her papped  throughout the day in a simple top and jeans ensemble with a statement jacket and shoe. The jeans were skinny, sometimes ripped, sometimes sleek, the jackets were smart, the shoes were edgy, admittedly sometimes a little too high for day wear, but this just added a little frivolity and glamour to the whole thing.

In Kourtney and Kim Take New York, Kim’s style danced between the polished, sleek and put together with precision approach to dress – similar to an approach you’d imagine the likes of Olivia Palermo or Victoria Beckham might take and the excessive glamorous, dressing to display wealth; wearing luxurious fur stoles and coats with large floppy hats, clunking gold Hermes bangles and pave diamond earrings, a style typical of Jennifer Lopez. Later on staple Kim K ensembles were shirts and camisole tops tucked into high waisted skirts – usually stopping above or just on the knee, leather trousers worn with a blouse and a pair of stilettos and the occasionally piece of statement jewellery.

And when dressed for the night, club openings and appearances, because let’s face it, before Kanye West there weren’t many red carpet events or front row opportunities, Kim dressed in body con dresses and towering heels that would display her well honed hour glass figure perfectly. This would be when the true Kim Kardashian emerges. When Kim shows the world exactly why she has found a place in the world of entertainment, why she is not only a Reality TV star, but the queen of  Reality TV, and that is  for no other reason than the fact that she happens to be the most impressive to look at and of course, because sex sells. Kim is dazzlingly beautiful, she’s ridiculously hot and she has a body so womanly and overtly sexual that no matter what she wears, no matter what she might do with her career, her greatest talent will always be her body.

Of course, the likes of Jourdan Dunn, Cara Delevigne, Rosie Huntington Whitely or any model for that fact, have all come to fame for the genetics they too have been blessed with and we enjoy their to be looked-at-ness just like we enjoy Kim’s. But the difference is, models circulate in a world that is considered far more cultured than Kim’s. Models embody the vision of  some of the most creative, talented and influential artists on the planet (if you believe that fashion is art). What does Kim embody? Fame, celebrity, sex, glamour, vanity, excess…?

Kim may shed her fake eyelashes, the hair extensions – that were at least twenty inches long and a few layers of make up, so we might see her actual skin tone and the fashion industry may well and truly embrace her. Carine Roitfield may feature her on her Fashion Book cover, Ricardo Tisci may be her new GBF and her boyfriend may even be a fashion designer himself, but the bottom line is, Kim Kardashian does not translate in the world of high fashion. The effortless chic look that she is currently championing with the bed head blonde hair and the barely there make up is refreshing, if anyone ever doubted whether Kim would still be pretty without all her glamorous armour, now they know. Nevertheless, style is a personal expression, it’s what makes fashion and trends unique to its wearer and I can quite confidently say that this new image is no personal expression of Kim’s.

Whilst she might try to play down her sexuality with the way she is fashioning herself, her actions say something different. She’s still laying across a motorbike faking an orgasm in Kanye West’s Bound Two video and she’s still posting almost naked pictures of herself on Instagram. Unfortunately neither the video or the post baby body Instagram picture appear artistic or fashion, like an exposed breast on a catwalk would. They serve no other purpose than to be sexual, as she is, and there is nothing wrong with this. Kim is sexual and sexy and it’s this that is HER style, she does it well and it’s ultimately what she does best. She made the most style mistakes by far in 2013 trying to deny herself of this.

Since becoming a mother it would appear that Kim seems to have re-established her style a little more. Full length coats, jersey tees tucked into pencil skirts and delicate stiletto heels seem to be her go to look. Yes the full length coats are chic, would I personally style someone of her height and shape in such a coat? No. The pedal pusher type leggings she has been wearing of lately are a complete fashion faux pas, mostly just in general, but again because they just aren’t flattering for her shape. The latest Paris ensemble that was the black long sleeved leather peplum top and velvet midi skirt, worn with black heeled sandals and tights (yes Kim wore tights!) wasn’t a bad outfit – if it was worn by Victoria Beckham and definitely without the tights, however, worn by Kim it’s just not working.

 Admittedly, Kim’s world has changed and being ‘fashionable’ definitely includes knowing how to style and dress yourself appropriately, as well as fashionably. No, the lashes, the big hair, the eye makeup fit for an Arabian princess and the towering platforms Kim once wore, aren’t exactly Parisian chic. Her new world, her frequent trips to Paris, her consorting with the fashion aristocracy – most of which are European and with a European sense of style – and motherhood should change her style and it has. Albeit, I might argue that this evolution seems a little too tactical to be deemed as personal style, unless social climbing is what she is trying to convey in her dress.

So, in answer to my question, has Kim’s style improved? Does she dress any better? I can quite simply answer ‘No’. Her style has undeniably changed, yes. But why would we think it has ‘improved’? Because Carine Roitfield says so? Because she’s now attending red carpet events that are a little more significant than a new club opening? Kim is dressing for the world she aspires to and as she is welcomed by the world of high fashion, she is alienating the fans that supported her in the world she’s leaving behind. No, Kim’s style hasn’t improved, she’s just dressing for a different audience – a more cultured, more elite and more powerful one.

allblackerrthingus:Everything Hip-hop/FashionJanuary 6, 2014 - Kim Kardashian shopping in Beverly Hills.-

Before…

Be Charmed, stay inspired!x

The Sweatshirt and the Kenzo Tiger Sweatshirt!

Trending #Sweatshirts

It was winter last year that the grey sweatshirt became one of the key wardrobe items to for super savvy street style dressing. The sporty garment, a staple for the gym, once taken out of its context and paired with skinny jeans and strappy sandals or a tailored pair of trousers and brogues seemed risque and innovative. Although it would appear, as seen in these photographs taken by Tommy Ton, that the reign of the sweatshirt sill very much resides this winter 2012-13, we have become so accustomed to the sweatshirt trend, that for super savvy-ness and ultimate fashion manipulation we can no longer play it safe by simply nodding towards the sporty trend with the initial grey sweatshirt. This norm has been accepted and it’s time to innovate once again and push the boundaries. Now the expert sweatshirt wearer creates a more stylised sweatshirt ensemble or selects a more statement making sweatshirt.

Those of you that have adopted the new approach to dress that Vogue has coined ‘Haute Casual’ for your winter wardrobe may have coveted the utmost seasoned sweatshirt wearers donning the, albeit conspicuous, admittedly cool Kenzo Tiger sweater. This Kenzo sweatshirt has indeed become the queen of this evolving sweatshirt trend and will buy you plenty of street style kudos in this fashion jungle. So much so that all 2,000 Kenzo tiger sweaters sold out in just two days and in a matter of hours at the Parisian Kenzo store earlier this year. This sweatshirt literally does all the talking, so you don’t have to do too much to look super stylish in it, no matter its sporty nature. Having said that, in my humble fashion books, the most street style kudos clearly comes from how creative you can get with incorporating this practical and functional sportswear item into a trendy chic ensemble.

Admittedly, as much as I adore the creativity and unpredictability of this new sweatshirt glamour, I am yet to invest in a sweatshirt myself. Habitually, in the winter months I take on a more Olivia Palermo/Victoria Beckham perfectly preened and neat image, seeking more inspiration from runway looks as opposed to street style. Unfortunately the sweatshirt creates a couple of concerns for me; firstly, with such a casual garment I would be very keen to wear a shirt beneath it that can smarten the round neck with a nice collar – this I can imagine would leave me feeling very hot, especially when I am commuting. Secondly, I wear a lot of slim lined coats, which I doubt a sweatshirt and shirt ensemble wouldn’t fit beneath comfortably. Thirdly, I fear that wearing the sweatshirt beneath a cape or the voluminous coats we have seen at the likes of Celine a/w 2012-13 can make me appear particularly top heavy and again, leave me feeling extremely hot.

However, for those of you that are tiny, whose commute does not involve power walking or taking the London Underground, that acclimatise to temperatures quickly, if you are thinking of trying out this new Haute Couture sweatshirt ensemble don’t let my sweatshirt concerns stop you. Opt for placing statement jewellery around the neckline, juxtaposing the sporty garment with a tailored shirt collar or pairing the sweatshirt with a glamorous skirt, evening clutch or an elegant shoe. The key is to play that push and pull game between conformist and alternative, formal against disorderly. And hey, if you can nail this look and are prepared to invest, why not go the whole hog and purchase the highly coveted tiger Kenzo sweater?!

I don’t think this sweatshirt trend is one that will stick with me for long, so I’ll definitely be giving the Kenzo tiger sweatshirt a miss. However, I am keen to try out the trend and am currently on the hunt for a grey Mickey Mouse sweatshirt, that I’ll wear with a white shirt, black skinny jeans and a pair of black pointed court shoes and statement necklace. So, I am still playing it safe with the colour, but with Mickey Mouse emblazoned on the front, it’s still a little quirky and most importantly, easy on my bank balance. Having said that, should someone wish to purchase the Kenzo Tiger sweatshirt for me as a gift, I most certainly won’t say no!

Grey sweatshirt ensemble

Black Neoprene Sweatshirt ensembles

Kenzo Sweatshirt

Anna dello Russo with grey sweatshirt dress

grey floral sweatshirt

Pink Letterman Sweatshirt

Black sweatshirt

Pink sweatshirt with blue peplum skirt

blue, red and grey sweatshirt

Green Kenzo SweatshirtBe charmed, stay inspired! x

Inspired by Paris…J’adore Paris

J’adore Paris

Inspired by a recent visit to Paris…

It’s been a while Dandies and I am feeling somewhat guilty for the length of time that I have been away from my much loved and treasured blog. In my absence I have celebrated my birthday, been to Paris, started reading a new book, which has managed to crawl beneath my skin and has claimed me entirely (indeed I am reading Fifty Shades of Grey), have begun to write my own novel with more urgency than I have the past few years that I have been writing it (yes, I said years!) and have just returned from Marrakech Morrocco!

So, I suppose I should start with Paris…

There are so many reasons that I adore Paris. I generally tend to love cities, but there’s something about this beautiful city that agrees with me so well. The first time I went to Paris I met a French woman at the Cuban Compagnie Cafe in Bastille, she spent a while talking to me and my friends about Paris and London. She said there is something very special about the relationship and connection between Paris and London…this was around the time that Marie Claire had coined those with dual lives split between Paris and London, ever so aptly, the Par – Dons. Paris is a very feminine city and London, its counterpart, is male, she said. Now looking back on her observation and having visited Paris twice since then with her notion in mind,  it seems that her observation explains my affection to Paris so accurately.

Paris, romantic, whimsical and introspective seems to speak to the writer within me…that is me and that I aspire to be. It paints pictures of Fitzgerald, Hemmingway and the expatriate art set that flocked to the city to seek romance, escapism and material for their novels. It illustrates the many fantastic articles I have read about Azzedine Alaia (his clothes I am still not rich enough to afford) and his rise to success ( a tale I can imagine would make a beautiful film) and his unique atelier on the rue du Moussy in Paris. Possibly the only piece of architecture I have ever really looked at and found breathtakingly beautiful resides in Paris…the looming presence of the Notre Dame. The thought of talking hours away in a tiny cafe facing the street and watching the passersby is such a simple yet fruitful pastime and the chicness I could admire forever.  I love Paris for its civility, it’s sophistication, its simplicity, its style –  it’s overall voyeuristic nature and henceforth, its understanding of humanity.

Champagne on the Eurostar
First glass of champagne on the Eurostar
Ayesha Charles headed to Paris
Enroute to Paris wearing my favourite shirt of the minute from Zara
Gare du Nord Paris
Gare du Nord from the hotel balcony

Gare du Nord Paris

Rue De Saint Quentin Paris

Rue De Saint Quentin Paris
Rue De Saint Quentin Paris from the hotel balcony
Notre Dame Cathedral Paris
Notre Dame Cathedral Paris
The Notre Dame de Paris
*sigh* The city of love….Love Birds at the Notre Dame de Paris

The flower gardens surrounding the Notre Dame de Paris
So proud of myself for taking this pic of Gemma at the flower gardens surrounding the Notre Dame de Paris!

Notre Dame Cathedral Paris
Notre Dame Cathedral Paris
Ayesha at the Notre Dame Cathedral Paris
It’s ME at the Notre Dame de Paris..
Mmmmm…C’est si bon!

(more Paris pics on the way)

…Paris J’adore! x