Day 6: Ornate Legwear By Bebaroque

I'm a little upset at myself for not thinking of this earlier, but as a tights and over-the-knee socks fan, the ornate legwear from Scottish company Bebaroque caught my eye immediately. These gold lamé and sequin socks are particularly perfect for holiday party looks. Give these as a gift and I almost guarantee the lucky recipient will wear them to their New Year's festivities.

The brand has a whole assortment of embellished, embroidered, tasseled and bedazzled legwear, dresses and body suits that had my mouth watering. But with the above gold and sequin knee socks priced at $144.00, I'll have to roll my tongue back into my mouth for a little longer.

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Part elegant hosiery, part luxury dancewear, Bebaroque essentially offers a sort of haute couture shortcut, combining the meticulous details haute couture demands with the simple canvas of universal, American Apparel-like basics. Pairing any of their pieces with a simple pleated skirt, belted dress, or really anything as Toyko style blogger Shan Shan has done (killed it!) gives a unique, eye-catching element that no one else on the street will have. One embellished body suit will cost you at minimum $350.00, yet compared to the ceiling-less pricing of runway couture, it's a steal. I'm particularly enamored with the black outfit below, I would wear that out as is!

Selections from Bebaroque's SS12 collection


But who am I kidding? I'm a total cheapskate, and upon seeing the knee socks and tights I thought to myself, "I can do that easily. Just hadn't occurred to me to do it before." Now, while I don't have the patience to make any of the lavishly decorated pieces, some of the simpler designs would be easy enough to make with a visit to the right craft store, a sewing kit and an hour or two of work in front of the TV. Maybe after our 12 Days of Xmas Gifts countdown I'll do a DIY post for a tights or socks project :).



Day 2: Geniune Lady Gaga Platforms from Noritaka Tatehana

So, I started off writing the second of our "12 Days of Xmas" posts about a pair of shoes my friend Dominique of the stunning wedding photography duo Love Me Sailor and I recently saw ("we were ready to pull a bitch by her hair out of the dance cage at Rhondavous for wearing the shoes we had been lusting after"). But after some research, I've discovered something better. MUCH better. Behold, the work of platform shoe artist and Lady Gaga cobbler Noritaka Tatehana


If you can't control your boner for Tatehana's work like I can't...

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Now, none of Noritaka Tatehana's shoes are for the faint of foot, but I like to think I've been working towards my platform blackbelt. Tatehana's shoes are stunning, gravity-defying explorations of fashion, whose conceptual designs are on the cusp of art. Archival pieces are currently being exhibited at the Comme des Garcons Trading Museum and shop in their Paris and Tokyo locations and Dover Street Market in London.

The young designer (a mere 26 years-old) was born in Japan and mentions his family came into money from the "centre of an entertainment and red-light district in Tokyo". The red-light district inspiration can certainly be seen in his work. Starting at 15, he taught himself fashion design and construction processes, later majoring in dyeing and weaving in college. Currently, every single one of his pieces are hand-executed by Tatehana himself! You can't ask for better craftsmanship for shoes ranging from $2,500 - $4,000. Many designer shoes are already in that price range, but can you imagine how much a shoe completely handmade by Christian Louboutin himself, or Karl Lagerfeld himself would cost??
The man himself, makin' your shoes


While no new collections are up for sale on his site, you can still special order pieces from the Tokyo  Trading Museum Comme des Garcons:

Opening hours AM11:00-PM6:00
2F GYRE Bldg 5-10-1 Jingumae Shibuya Tokyo 1500001, JAPAN
TEL +81 (0) 3 3486 8590 

Aaand for those of you who aren't quite up to task for Tatehana's shoes, or perhaps live in the real world and plan on walking on real streets, copy king Jeffrey Campbell's "Night Walker" shoe is a fantastic alternative for the much more affordable price of $170.00. While Tatehana's pieces are a crash course, Campbell's shoes are a nice, gentle beginner's lesson in footwear ergonomics without being ankle-breakingly dangerous (and nowhere near as gorgeous).

EDIT: My friend Joshua reminded me that Campbell's Night Walkers are a direct reproduction of another platform diva's go-to shoe designer Natacha Marro. That diva? Why self-styling fashion maven Ms. Daphne Guiness of course.


12 Days of Xmas - Day 1: The Light Keeper Set

I. Love. Christmas. Call me a sucker, but when the lights go up, the holiday songs start playing and everything has pumpkin spice in it, I get all tingly inside. Stealing Alexander Wang's idea, we're doing a 12 Days Of Christmas gifts countdown (A.Wang will certainly make it on our list) to inspire your holiday shopping this year. If anyone would like to send one of my picks over to me, feel completely free to do so!

 Kicking off the list is a beautiful sterling silver "The Light Keeper" necklace set by James Banks. It comes with a set of tool charms: a screw driver, tweezers and a funnel along with a real glass light bulb. But the real kicker? The lightbulb is filled with 30 loose black diamonds and then some.

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Harmoniously working together, the purpose of the funnel and tweezers is to aid in switching out the jewels (or "the light") inside the light bulb. The filament can also be removed and worn as a charm. I love the ability to customize your necklace with this set, and how everything has it's utility: the bulb for keeping the light, screwdriver for opening the light, tweezers for choosing the light and the funnel for transferring the light. Being able to participate in the design process, however small a contribution, is always a welcomed element--although that might only be because I'm a jewelry designer myself!

How this set actually came to my attention was that one of the James Banks designers is Adam Shulman, a.k.a. actress Anne Hathaway's freshly minted fiance. Along with jewelrysmith Heidi Nahser Fink, who does stunning metal work herself, the duo has so far released a very small collection of antique-inspired necklaces.

The set comes in a beautiful leather "tool" pouch and a polished wooden box with instructions on how to use the precious tools. Any guy or girl will be thrilled to receive this set (I know I would), but with a $1,100.00 price tag, you may just want to keep it for yourself.

Check back tomorrow for #11!

Loves & Lusts: 12 Days of Ultimate Christmas Gifts

Maybe it's a little late for a countdown (okay, completely late), but here's my '12 Days of Christmas' wish list that is still applicable even after the holidays (especially #3). Click away!

12 Photogram Prints by Job Piston - $500, Khastoo Gallery



11 Designer Condom Packs - $5.99/3pk, Proper Attire
From top left: Keith Haring, Yigal Azrouël, Jeremy Scott, Charlotte Ronson, Alexander Wang, Opening Ceremony.




10 Crazy Nails with Konad Nail Stamping A Set - $139.90, Konad.com




9 Scented Candles - $36.00 each, Tocca.com




8 oz box of Teuscher Champagne Truffles - $44.50, Teuscher Beverly Hills


7 French Lesson Panties Set - $295.00, Kiki de Montparnasse




6 Killer Platforms - $159.95 - $589.95, Solestruck.com
From top left: Page One - Jeffrey Campbell, Wynn - Sam Edelman, Wilma - Senso, 252-95 - Finsk, Clik Biker Boot - Maurie & Eve, Adam - Report Signature.




5 Cartier Panthere Rings! - $$THOUSANDS$$, Cartier.com




4 "Don't fucking touch me" Studded Jackets - Also thousand$, Burberry Prorsum SS '11




3 Matching Boyfriends - Priceless, My Dreams
From left to right: Andrew Garfield, Mark Ronson, Jon Kortajarena





2 Royal Welsh Corgis - Buckingham Palace





1 AMAZING 2011!