Links of the Whatever – October 19, 2018

There are now two Links of the Whatever posts! It’s officially a series 😛 More links and my ramblings on random fashion and fashion-adjacent things.

History of the pointy, wide-brimmed witch hat

In the spirit of Halloween – some witchy history! Well, as far as we can guess, anyway. The Wikipedia page on witch hats is rather sparse, and there’s a Slate article that goes a little more in depth, but this blog post from a blog called It’s About Time includes lots of fantastic old paintings and woodcuts in the article to show different predecessors of the current day witch hat. I really need to get a few wears of my black wide-brimmed wool hat in this month.

That is quite a ruff. 1596 Joan, 1st wife of Edward Alleyn by an unidentified artist of the British School in a capotain hat

I got the last link from @ixdoxdeclare on Instagram after she featured it in one of her instastories. She runs a shop that sells dark, romantic witchy clothes and accessories. Her outfits are always fun to see, and they often feature a variety of luxe fabrics and voluminous cuts.

CBI trend forecast moodboard

I found this PDF from CBI (couldn’t find what the org name stands for! Guessing it’s a translation)  which is apparently an organization that promotes imports from developing countries to Europe. I have no idea how credible this is as a trend forecast, but regardless I really love how it was put together. It describes different themes that are expected to be prevalent in Fall 18 / Winter 19 and then includes examples of colors, knit and woven fabrics, trimmings, details, and artistic elements that make up each. They use specific technical terms for things in each section, which along with the site description makes me think this document is aimed at buyers for fabrics and trimmings rather than consumers.

One of the themes they go over that I’ve definitely been seeing in shops around me is the one they call “Intense and Pure”, which is an emphasis on tailored items and traditional fabrics and patterns like tweed, herringbone, checks, and houndstooth. Every mall shop seems to have its own version of a loose-fit checked blazer.

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Fintan Mulholland knitwear

This isn’t something I would want to personally wear, but this Irish designer makes some really cool architectural knitwear. It looks like it would fit right in with some sci-fi costuming. I also like that the instagram page includes moodboard and inspiration photos that mirror the shapes of the garments they post.

WGSN on the development of long-ranging trends

WGSN is a company that does trend forecasting. Brands and design houses will often have a subscription to their services, which is a bit of an interesting chicken-or-the-egg problem if you think about it. They’ll cover specific things like “this color will be everywhere” to overarching themes reaching into lifestyle and design that will define several years. The released a white paper The Anatomy of a Trend about the latter, which was an interesting read because it charts the genesis of some 2010s trends and then starts poking at what might happen in the natural backswing of the pendulum of popularity. They cover “Wellness” and “Artisan” as themes, which to me definitely sound like buzzwords of the past few years (cough m i l l e n n i a l s).

Personally I thought the “craft meets technology” prediction for the future of “artisan” was a bit of a cop-out, but I could see a further split of attitudes towards wellness happening. Seems in line with the general polarization of culture in the US, anyway. I hadn’t thought about how the 2008 recession as well as a growing concern for the environment affected a lot of the trends related to these arcs (DIY/maker/handmade, craft beer and hipster coffee, slow/ethical fashion, natural materials in home decor – lookin at you, succulents and macrame wall hangings – and fashion) so that was an interesting connecting point that I saw from this.

@xxokohakxx’s ootd presentation

I don’t read or speak Japanese so I actually have no idea what any of her posts say, but I think the teen magazine esque photography and annotations on @xxokohakxx are adorable. She has some pretty cute outfits too.

Squeaky shoe repairs

Not much to say here. I had a pair of oxfords that had a squeaky heel, so I looked at a bunch of articles about the causes and fixes of that symptom. The carreducker blog had the best article. Sadly I concluded that it would probably cost nearly as much as the original price of the shoe for a cobbler to basically tear the whole thing apart and rebuild it, but I guess I know to check for that now before buying things from consignment.

Challenging television costume design ft. 2018 Emmy winners

Not gonna lie, I didn’t actually read this whole article, but it has interviews with the costume designers for shows from a bunch of Emmy nominated shows. I mostly just clicked it because I wanted to see more Game of Thrones costumes. I don’t even watch the shows, I just think the costumes are awesome.

Michelle Clapton for ‘Game Of Thrones’ (Beyond the Wall)

“Dany’s (Emilia Clarke) white coat: I wanted to create something practical — it would surely be cold flying a dragon north — and white, suggesting a sense of purity and selflessness in her mission to save Jon Snow (Kit Harrington) and to appear like a descending angel in the rescue. Whilst relatively easy to design, it was incredibly difficult to make and took a lot of prototyping and collaboration between departments within costume. We created the ‘fabric’ by stitching lengths of leather, faux leather, short white faux fur and long fine dark faux fur together. Once we found the most effective way to do this, each panel of the coat was created and then molded onto a base for strength. This whole structure was then mounted on to a corset, like a base, to make it secure and flattering. It’s essential that a costume fit the actor perfectly and allow them to move with ease. It’s incredibly physical work for Emilia to perform on the dragon rig and can take days. The back panel was faux fur that we cut into to create the idea of a dragons back. It all took a very long time.”

The flagship AT&T store in SF had a GoT exhibit which included some costumes earlier this year, and those things were detailed. They looked like they could get pretty heavy to wear, especially some of the dresses. Unfortunately I didn’t get any good photos because I only had my old phone camera and they were all in glass cases, but here’s a gratuitous photo of me at the exhibit:


Black Friday’s evolution from mass hype to targeted experience

More from WGSN – this is one of those articles that at least for me, doesn’t tell me anything I didn’t already know, but rather articulates it well and provides a few more data points. Black Friday hype is slowing down as people realize that it’s not necessarily the best way to do a large haul of shopping unless you maybe have a specific item you’ve been watching. Instead “retailers have to utilise consumer-centric initiatives such as online wish lists, virtual shopping baskets and curated gift lists”. To me this doesn’t sound like anything specific to Black Friday. It’s something that’s been happening generally.

A lot of the brands that I follow (aimed at younger women) definitely have been doing things to make interactions with the brand feel like ~hanging out with your cool friend~, Black Friday and the other 364 days of the year. The most recent one I can think of is Nordstrom renaming their rewards program from “Nordstrom Rewards” to “The Nordy Club”, which personally I think is a sickly sweet try-hard name, but at least they’re keeping up with the marketing times.

I keep an adblocker on, but generally I’ve thrown off my tinfoil hat and accept that retailers will literally track every movement of your mouse on their webpage (yes, every movement) and actions across other sites to figure out how to increase that sweet, sweet user engagement. Website functionality sometimes won’t even work if you use an adblocker (looking at you, Forever 21 search). I don’t really mind if it means on my end all I get is more personalized ads following me around sites. I guess the advertisers win here 💸

Barbie Style Instagram

In case you’ve missed it, Barbie is also on Instagram and of course, she is fabulous. She visits current museum exhibitions, attends fashion shows, goes to the beach, eats brunch, and grabs coffee. Mostly I am just jealous of whoever’s job it is to produce content for the page. #dreamjobsIdidntknowexisted. I love that they feature fairly diverse dolls, and some of the looks are actually kind of amazing, like this one:

The end

“I’m going to do a link listicle series. It will be quick and easy.”

1500+ words, thanks for making it to the end 🙃

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