mod men

Building Awareness via Fashion: World Water Day

Posted in Uncategorized by modman on March 22, 2010

Plenty of designers have been inspired by water in some form: crashing waves, fast-flowing rivers, violent rapids, trickling streams and quiet creeks. Despite having been inspired by one of the strongest elements, very few have brought awareness to the reality of usable water: its shortage.

The United Nations recognizes today as World Water Day. This years theme is “Clean Water for a Healthy World”. I learned this in middle school and it has stuck with me since: the earth is covered by 70-75% water, 97% is in the oceans and 1% is available for human use. The world population is approximately 6.7 billion and we live in a world that is controlled by private corporations and corrupt governments that control and limit access to basic necessities, like water and housing, and other resources.

There is a shortage of available drinking water in so many countries. Even if there is a water supply, most of it is contaminated with pollutants and other debris. Developing countries do not have strict laws that police water pollution. Industries that do pollute the water have no incentive not to. Because of the lack of drinking water, poverty-stricken villagers resort to taking in whatever water they can find, which results in water-borne illnesses. Diarrhea is a top infant killer, and “1.8 million children aged under five who succumb to water-borne diseases. This equates to one infant every 20 seconds” (csmonitor).

I can list fact after fact and reality after reality all day, but that wont do any good. People are stricken the moment they see a devastating picture or are horrified when they hear the number of deaths caused by diarrhea. But very few act on their emotions.

It is sometimes difficult for me to wrap my head around international issues like this.. especially because I feel that its so far removed from my life. This is exactly the wrong perception. Non-profit organizations such as charity water, the water project, and Drop in the Bucket help bring awareness, funds and sustainable practices to developing nations.

Leanne Marshall, winner of Project Runway’s season 5, showed a collection at Bryant Park that was entirely inspired by water and waves. A challenge from this season’s Project Runway was to create a piece that was inspired by the four elements: earth, air, fire, or water. If fashion can draw on inspiration of such powerful forces, imagine what fashion can do for humanitarian awareness.

2NE1 Leads the Korean Fashion Pack.

Posted in Uncategorized by modman on March 13, 2010

Korean girl group MV’s were never very good.. they used to be mostly 1) girls in cute/school girl/pink outfits prancing around, never really singing and definitely not good at dancing, 2) girls in leather trying to dance provocatively. And failing. For the most part, its still the same.

Thankfully, though, there are a select number of entertainers/girl groups like Hyori, BoA, Brown Eyed Girls and a few others that have ventured out with new concepts over the years. Currently, 2NE1 leads the pack in fusing fashion, art, graphic/3D design and music into one mind-blowing video.

2NE1 hasnt been out for very long, but they have definitely made a name for themselves early on, and fast. CL, Minzy, Bom and Dara have unique, distinctive styles that separate the group from SNSD, Kara, T-ara, etc. Their eclectic music serves as the perfect platform for out-of-this-world fashion.

The two men behind 2ne1’s style are Yang Seung Ho and Lee Hyun Jung. Yang is a graduate from Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design (a school that boasts John Galliano, the late Alexander McQueen, Gareth Pugh as alumni). Lee is a graduate of Chelsea College of Art. Yang and Lee are besties with Big Bang’s G-Dragon.. if you didnt know before, you can definitely see that they have similar tastes. Yang and Lee arent about traditional fashion or classic styles. The duo embraces avant-garde, futuristic and fun styles. They especially love the work of American fashion wild-child, Jeremy Scott (shoutout to 2ne1 on the wikipage!). Whats not to love?

Check out the visually stimulating MV for Try To Follow Me. CL (이채린) OWNS the MV. Dont you agree?

But I hope 2ne1 doesnt follow in the footsteps of Nicole vs. The Pussycat Dolls.. That would be a shame.

GlobalTex, LA International Textile & Sourcing Fair.

Posted in Uncategorized by modman on March 9, 2010

GlobalTex, a textile and sourcing trade show, was in town last week. I was hesitant to go to the GlobalTex Trade show because 1) it was in downtown, and on a school day, 2) it was a textile and sourcing event, 3) I had no one to go with. In the end, I made transportation arrangements, took care of my classes, and felt that I should learn more about the textile industry. And New York Fashion Week trained me well to go to events alone. I overcame all of my obstacles and I am glad I made the effort to check it out. I met some amazing people and gained knowledge about a division of the fashion industry that I never knew about or took the time to research, until now.

GlobalTex, the premier West Coast textiles trade show, took over Los Angeles Convention Center for the LA International Textile & Sourcing Fair last week from March 2-4, 2010. It has been described as “the largest tradeshow in the United States for apparel textiles and technology, created to meet the high-growth demands of the global textile industry” (GlobalTex). I made a trip out to downtown Los Angeles to check out the events, seminars and exhibits featured at the GlobalTex Fair.

After picking up my press Fast Pass, I browsed exhibitor booths and observed buyer/seller interactions. The number of exhibitors that were there was surprising. There were exhibitors from Portugal, India, London, Bangladesh, New York, Vietnam, China and France, to name a few. Companies that specialized in goods such as labeling, hardware, graphics and design software, and all kinds of fabrics could be found in one area. There were quite a few service-oriented agencies including trend forecasting firms, design studios, garment manufacturing and production companies and publication businesses in another section of West Hall.

Exhibitors were divided and laid out based on common Global Styles next to corresponding trend displays, which were extremely well designed and well constructed. Global Styles are product categories that represent the complete supply chain.

Live: Alluring resources to live to the max: silks, knits, velvet/velour, lace, linen, fur, embroidery/ribbon
Dwell: Imagining the essence of home
Work: The structured downtown experience: suitings, wool, linen, knits, wovens/shirtings
Play: Comfortable materials for everyday dreams: cotton, linen, shirtings, knits, prints
Wear: Denim for every moment and every style
Create: The inspiration destination: trend/color services, fibers, art studios
Adorn: A notion of the necessary: buttons, trims, hardware
Move: Capturing the energy of the race: tech/performance fabrics, knits
Process: Technology and equipment to help develop what’s next
Source: Visualize production and design possibilities from global manufacturers large and small

I was especially interested in the seminars. I made sure to attend the seminars on Spring/Summer 2011 Color and Lifestyle Trends and Women’s and Men’s Trend Focus for Spring/Summer 2011. The Panel Discussion about New Developments for Today’s Fashions focused on innovative fabrics where I learned more about the research goes into fabric development. I hope to hear more about the growth and expansion of organic and sustainable fabrics. The Big Picture Seminar centered on the retailer & consumer relationship. There is an immediate connection to the consumer and business models are changing to meet the high demands of well-informed, educated customers. Finally, the Financing Fashion in 2010 Panel Discussion featured Kevin Sullivan, Executive Vice President of Wells Fargo Trade Capital and Ilse Metcheck, President of California Fashion Association, among many others.

I am currently typing up the notes that I took during these seminars. I cannot wait until finals are over so I can go back and analyze what it is that I learned and apply it to my own thoughts.

The next GlobalTex Show will be September 28-30, 2010. Look forward to more exhibitors, up-to-date seminars, panel discussions and a great experience at the premier West Coast textiles trade show!

London Fashion Week.

Posted in fashion week., new york city. by modman on February 21, 2010

This past week has been quite the whirlwind.. some days were packed with shows to run to and I honestly dont know where the time went. My trip was only 10 days but I experienced so much in those 10 days. It feels like I was in New York City for more than a month.

Fashion editors, photographers, buyers, models, makeup and hair specialists who travel to and from one fashion week to another do more work than most people know. The travel itself is extremely draining and although it may seem like the ultimate dream (which it was/is for me), the work that goes on behind the scenes is exactly that.. unseen. London Fashion Week just started a few days ago (the 19th) and then Milan and Paris shows continue through to the second week of March. How insane.

My overall recap of my time at NYFW is coming soon.. Almost every blogger I know has already written about their experiences already but the schoolwork that I missed beckons. Im excited to go back and organize my thoughts on social media + fashion, trends on the runway, and some changes I was thinking about for modmen. Stay tuned!

BLOGsearch : The Sartorialist.

Posted in Uncategorized by modman on December 7, 2009

THE Sartorialist - Scott Schuman

Finals week is about browsing and learning anything.. anything and everything BUT the material for classes that is. I was chatting with a friend and we came to the conclusion that during finals week, people know everything about anything recent (ie. the “it” youtube video, spoofs, mvs, and anything Tiger-related) and nothing about their finals (not as much as they should anyway). Reading blogposts or tweets about everything up-to-date is not enough. Students go wayyyyy back to dig up some “oldies but goodies”.

I am guilty of browsing  some archived blogposts of blogs on my blogroll. I decided to start the BLOGsearch addition to modmen. I wanted to share blogs that I find my inspiration from with all of you. The first and most influential blog has been The Sartorialist.

The Sartorialist is a fashion blog by Scott Schuman. He photographs individuals who catch his crafted eye and posts them on his blog. He is known as the pioneer for fashion photography in blogform and also has a monthly page in GQ and is a featured blog for style.com. Scott shares his thoughts on his blog and his initial intentions:

“When I worked in the fashion industry (15 years), I always felt that there was a disconnect between what I was selling in the showroom and what I was seeing real people (really cool people) wearing in real life.”

“I thought I could shoot people on the street the way designers looked at people, and get and give inspiration to lots of people in the process. My only strategy was to try and shoot style in a way that I knew most designers hunted for inspiration.”

Check out his blog for some amazing photographs. He doesn’t just focus on “fashion” or “style”, but he highlights color and other artful elements as well. I hope his photographs inspire you in some way. Happy browsing!

Style Profile...Alessandra Colombo, Milano

On the Street....Rue St. Honoré, Paris, France

On the Street....Carine and Emmanuelle