Saturday, October 29, 2011

But Dita Von Teese was the belle of the ball

getty via daylife
Dita Von Teese might have bucked with tradition at Flemington Racecourse today by failing to adhere to Derby Day's traditional black and white dress code. But while there were some terribly chic ensembles at the track - Lindy Klim springs to mind, in an elegant black sheath dress with point d'esprit sleeves and a black picture hat - Von Teese stole the show in her own creation: the one-shouldered, draped 'Follow Me' style in 'ruby lips red' from her new Muse capsule dress collection. It was teamed with a scarlet Philip Treacy hat and matching Christian Louboutin satin pumps and clutch. Other racegoers weren't quite as well pulled-together, notably those who opted for shaggy, unkempt hair. One case in point, Alexandra Richards - daughter of Keith - who was otherwise elegant in a black silk maxidress and black lace headpiece.

Miss J is the belle of the Derby

getty via daylife
Derby Day is in full swing but at time of posting, not a whole heap of fashion coverage was forthcoming either from the mainstream media or the real-time crew. In the interim, here are a few shots from Getty. Most adhered to the traditional black and white dress code of the first day of the week-long Melbourne Cup Carnival, the highlight of which is of course Tuesday's Melbourne Cup. Great effort by America's Next Top Model model mentor J Alexander - aka "Miss J" - who topped his smart black suit with a fabulous black-and-white, Cecil Beaton-inspired headpiece that looked like it was straight off the Royal Ascot set from My Fair Lady. Alexander is part of a posse of international celebs who will descend on Flemington Racecourse over the next week. Others expected include Sarah Jessica Parker, Joan Collins and Kim Kardashian. Dita von Teese, who is in town to spruik her new Muse dress collection at David Jones, bucked Derby Day's dress code with a scarlet red ensemble from her own collection:

Bambi Northwood-Blyth covers V magazine with Lindsey Wixson

v magazine
Australia's Bambi Northwood-Blyth is on a roll. Behold the latest cover of US fashion magazine V starring Northwood-Blyth together with Lindsey Wixson - one of four covers of V's issue #74, shot by Terry Richardson and styled by ex Vogue Paris editor Carine Roitfeld. Each cover pairs together two models, most of them high profile. Head to V's website to see the others, featuring Candice Swanepoel and Joan Smalls; Daphne Groeneveld and Saskia de Brauw and Sui He and Hanaa Ben Abdesslem. "These eight girls are unique" Roitfeld told WWD. "It's their diversity that makes each of them, to me, truly modern. They bring a new energy to fashion". This may be Northwood-Blyth's first major international cover, but it's her fifth OS cover this year, after French Revue des Modes (Spring/Summer 2011), Vogue Nippon (April 2011), Harpers Bazaar Espana (May 2011) and the current Fall/Winter 2011 cover of the Barcelona-based Metal magazine. And that's not the end of her V duties. She will be co-hosting V's Halloween party tomorrow night in New York with Richardson, Smalls, Swanepoel and He. Will her designer/DJ love interest "Dangerous Dan" Single play a set?

Monday, October 24, 2011

King Flinn

The live finale of Australia's Next Top Model is tomorrow night at the Sydney Opera House, a time that's sure to prompt a little soul-searching amongst ANTM-ites. Questions such as "Will the series be renewed for 2012?" and "Will I, won't I, have my contract renewed"? Although no Foxtel announcement is as yet forthcoming, given that ANTM is the highest-rating Australian production on pay tv, the chances of a Cycle 8 are good. Josh Flinn, the show's model mentor for the past two seasons already has, we hear, a few other tv irons in the fire. So stand by to see if he becomes ANTM's next breakout star. In the interim, here is Flinn like you have never seen him before. Produced and art directed by Mother & Father PR as a frockwriter exclusive, the story was lensed by Sonny Vandevelde, styled by James Dykes, with hair by Natalie-Anne Ayoub and makeup by Rebecca Hatherly for Napoleon. Entitled 'The thin white duke', it was inspired not by David Bowie, but in fact Edward VIII, British monarch from January-December 1936, who became the Duke of Windsor following his abdication.

Friday, October 21, 2011


iris van herpen haute couture FW1112/
Adelaide is emerging as quite the model springboard. This time last year frockwriter popped over to the Adelaide Fashion Festival and stumbled upon a new face just-signed to local agency Finesse Models, Melissa Johannsen. Johannsen has since emerged as a key member of the new Australian modelling A Team on the international circuit. Tomorrow we are heading back for the 2011 Adelaide Fashion Festival - once again, as a guest of the organisers - and a quick ring-around unearthed a few more hidden SA gems. Case in point, Tori Trigg. This 18 year-old champion horsewoman was, according to Adelaide's Pride Models, overlooked by Sydney agencies earlier this year when Pride first introduced her. After coming to the attention of the world's biggest modelling agency, IMG, Trigg was whisked off to the Paris haute couture shows in July. She booked three shows, walking alongside the much higher profile Australians Julia Nobis, Codie Young and Ajak Deng, unbeknown to most. Here is Trigg at Iris van Herpen (above) and in this video, where she appears at 58', immediately following Young:

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Royal commission: The Queen's Australian tour wardrobe

reuters via daylife

Because noone ever seems to track what eightysomethings wear on the red carpet, frockwriter thought we would buck with tradition and clock the frocks in which HM Queen Elizabeth II rocks up during her 10-day visit to Australia. This is her 16th trip downunder and many predict it may be her last. After touching down yesterday in a British Airways 777 at Canberra's Fairbairn RAAF base - welcomed to Australia, for the first time in history, by an all-female Australian power posse in Prime Minister Julia Gillard, Governor General Quentin Bryce and ACT Chief Minister Katy Gallagher - HM wore an aquamarine military-style coat by British couturier Stewart Parvin; a short-brimmed aquamarine straw hat festooned with grey silk flowers and plumage by Rachel Trevor-Morgan and a wattle and tea-tree blossom brooch designed by Paul Schneller, a sentimental favourite from the Royal Collection. Commissioned by Melbourne jeweller William Drummond & Co, the subsequently much-copied yellow and white diamond brooch was presented to the Queen by Prime Minister Robert Menzies in 1954, during her first Australian visit, reportedly eliciting the response: "I value this magnificent brooch not only for its artistic beauty but as the symbol of the kindness and loyalty of my people in Australia". Corgi suit-clad Republicans notwithstanding, the "Aussie! Aussie! Aussie! Oi! Oi! Oi!"chant that erupted yesterday would indicate that she still has quite some local support.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Bull market

tom bull by justin chung

Andrej Pejic is the undisputed king of Australian mens’ modelling right now – even if he’s rocking womenswear half of the time. Although yet to make the big dollars, in terms of profile, it’s impossible to ignore Pejic, with global news stories about him rolling out on almost a daily basis. He is currently the only Australian to make the Top 50 Men list (#18). Others to catch the attention of the international fashion industry of late include Jordan Coulter, Jethro Cave, Frankie Eliss-Galatti, Broed Dillewaard and Jack Vanderhart - with indigenous Australian Jake Gordon recently popping up at a few New York Fashion Week shows. So far no other Australian men have matched the track record of Heath Townsend, now in his 30s and a David Jones ambassador, but an erstwhile advertising face of Louis Vuitton, Calvin Klein and Abercrombie & Fitch. But Tom Bull is making a pretty good start. 

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Middleton English

getty via daylife
Queen Elizabeth II has touched down in Australia, where she will attend the 2011 Commonwealth Heads of Government meeting in Perth. Less than a week after she greeted Elle Macpherson, Hugh Jackman, Andrej Pejic and a swag of other prominent Australians at Buckingham Palace. With 10 days of royal news ahead of us downunder, frockwriter thought we would address one little aristo puzzle that has perplexed us since April 29th, when Prince William married Kate Middleton and the titles, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, Earl and Countess of Strathearn and Baron and Baroness Carrickfergus, were bestowed on the couple. Why does the media insist on continuing to call the Duchess/Countess/Baroness by her maiden name? It’s not just entertainment sites and blogs bereft of iron-fisted sub-editors who religiously vet house style sheets and protocol lists that are doing it. A case in point E! Entertainment, which recently ran the headline: “Bitch Stole My Look: Kate Middleton vs. Cat Deeley”. Even newspapers and mainstream tv news sites don’t seem to care. Here's a small sample of stories that have run since the wedding:

Friday, October 14, 2011

Blowout at Buckingham Palace

antipodium's facebook
So Buckingham Palace's Australian reception is done and dusted. Three hundred and fifty guests descended on the palace last night for a special meet-and-greet with Her Royal Highness Queen Elizabeth II and the Duke of Edinburgh, ahead of next week's royal visit downunder. So far there don't seem to be terribly many photos of Andrej Pejic. But Antipodium designer Geoffrey J Finch snapped these two shots of Pejic en route to the do in a rather demure black vintage Versace pencil skirt and charcoal grey Paul Smith blazer (and not Jean Paul Gaultier, a rack of whose clothes, we hear, had been sent to Pejic prior to the event). Teamed with, Pejic tells frockwriter, an Issey Miyake blouse, black tights, boots from Australian high street chain Tony Bianco and his mum's vintage gold belt from the 1980s, the most extravagant aspect of the outfit was his coiffure: dead straight blond hair extensions which reached to his waist - the antithesis of his Bellatrix L'Estrange-meets-Marie-Antoinette up do at Myer's recent relaunch party. In the absence so far of any photographic evidence, did Pejic actually get to meet the Queen or did he just mill about the reception rooms while a select few were run past Her Majesty? "All the guests who attended last night's reception were presented to The Queen and The Duke of Edinburgh" a Buckingham Palace spokesperson told us.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Andrej Pejic and Geoffrey J Finch gear up for their hot date at Buckingham Palace

geoffrey j finch's facebook, juergen teller/photoshopped by frockwriter

Our recent post about Andrej Pejic heading off to meet the Queen at an upcoming Australian-themed reception at Buckingham Palace caused a minor stir. Although Pejic’s Australian agency Chadwick had initially confirmed Pejic would be attending this Thursday's soiree, faced with what we hear was a subsequent barrage of calls from the Australian mainstream media, the agency later played it a little coy, claiming Pejic “had not decided if he would make it to London”. Yeah, right. This morning, we spoke with fellow Buck Palace invitee, Pejic’s London-based Australian designer mate Geoffrey J Finch, who tells frockwriter the pair plans to head to the soiree together. “I couldn’t think of a better date to go with” said Finch, who was the first to put Pejic on a runway in womenswear way back in May 2009 in Sydney, when Pejic opened Finch’s Antipodium show at Australian Fashion Week. Finch is suiting up for the royal occasion in a double-breasted charcoal Burberry. Is he at all concerned that his date might turn up channeling Princess Diana? “It would be quite incredible, I’d love to see him in a little pleated collar” he noted. So far, however, we gather Pejic has been mulling over a rack of Jean Paul Gaultier. “I can’t wait to see what he pulls out of the bag” says Finch. UPDATE 14/10: Blowout at Buckingham Palace.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Summer of the thirty-eighth doll

dempsey stewart at louis vuitton SS12/getty via daylife
Take a bow ladies - and gentlemen. Thirty-eight Australian models have just helped wrap up the Spring/Summer 2012 ready-to-wear runway season in New York, London, Milan and Paris - by frockwriter's estimate, a 35percent increase in numbers from the previous season. And what a season it has been, culminating over this past week in Paris, where the 18-strong Australian contingent included Miranda Kerr. No Balenciaga exclusive for Kerr, for the first time in four seasons. But after making her name as one of the world's highest-paid models, thanks to a lucrative contract with lingerie giant Victoria's Secret, how fantastic to see Kerr take her place alongside the world's top high fashion girls in a string of other blue chip brand shows, from Christian Dior to Lanvin and Chanel. Flanked by Abbey Lee Kershaw and Catherine McNeil, who is looking better than ever after a year's break from the shows, it was like the holy triumvirate of Australian modelling reunited. They were joined by Julia Nobis who walked in, wait for it, 72 shows, opening six. This may well make Nobis the busiest model - of any nationality - of the SS12 season by show numbers. Oddly, Nobis has yet to even be accorded a ranking on's Top 50 Women list. One assumes this may soon change.   

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