The Marilyn Riseman Symphony Fashion Series at Brasserie Jo is a weekly fashion show that is near and dear to my heart. Marilyn was a close friend of mine and always-even in her 80’s- had her pulse on what was hot and what was not. The series of 20 shows per season started as a way to lunch and view budding local designer collections, which has brought attention to some very talented individuals. This week I am turning the spotlight on Chynna Pope.
Chynna Pope has come a long way from her fledgling beginnings at the School of Fashion Design and interning under the hand of master Roger Hinds. On Friday September 16, 2015, she featured a capsule collection, which showed 26 looks-some of the old mixed in with the new. Chynna was proud to say that because of her time spent with Roger, her very first prototypes seamlessly blended with her current work.
Backstage the atmosphere was calm and serene, not the usual frantic of some of the shows I’ve attended and hosted myself. Probably a reflection of the cool cat attitude of Chynna herself. She held her hand up to her right temple and showed me the shaved side of her head, where Pini took to her scalp with a razor just days ago. As she finished her touch up by makeup artist extraordinaire Cole McNair, she told me that she had actually consented to it, so had no regrets whatsoever.
Cole described the look as on trend-pastel tones. He used the daytime as inspiration for his makeup choice- daytime demeure. In collaboration with Chynna they decided to use pastel tones- lips nude pink (quiver), in a matte soft wash tint, blush a peachy shimmer (lovelust), and complexion illumination on the cheekbones to create a healthy glow and hydration to the skin-despite the unfriendly polar temps outside.
The girls ran back and forth from makeup to hair. Chynna enlisted master stylist Sameena Khan from Floyd’s Barbershop on Mass Ave. Sameena wanted to keep it fresh and show off the clothes by keeping the hair off of the face. She stayed on trend and did a messy, sexy, off the face look using a flat iron, teasing, twisting and body building sprays. Sounds like a workout for hair! Nonetheless, the finished product was impeccable. The models, most of whom were ice skaters, looked nothing like the pulled tight, shellacked buns you see at the Olympics, but rather serene angels with that messy, sexy swept up hair.
Chynna seemed to float around effortlessly, checking deets as her assistant asked various questions. She walked me through the collection as the models (3 ice skaters and 1 SFD student) shimmied into their first looks. The collection went from menswear inspired tuxedo shirts and pants for women-think wearing your boyfriend’s tuxedo home the morning after-to billowy, motor cross inspired gowns and kimono tops. I love fabric manipulation,” said Chynna, showing me the topstitching seen throughout her pieces. Though it is reminiscent of Catherine Maladrino, Pope stated that some of her influences were Jean Paul Gautier and the late Alexander McQueen. But more important to Chynna was the inspiration she derived from life events. Her topstitching motif was actually inspired by a motor cross race she attended in Ireland–The Scariest 500 Road Race. The riders were all wearing this leather structured topstiching, and it instantly spoke to her and ended up being the lead motif for her entire collection.
PHOTOS BY SHANNON HAWKINS
I look forward to the Golden Globes the way football fans anticipate the Super Bowl. It tends to be one of the award shows where people still take risks. However, this year’s gathering proved to be a rather non-risky one. Trends on the red carpet were: for men, velvet for jackets, sharp lines and a throwback to the ’50’s.
Kevin Spacey looked sharp as ever in his Hugo Boss tuxedo. According to his stylist Johanna Argan, who recently got nominated for the CDG Award for Contemporary Design for his show “House of Cards,” she put Spacey in the Hugo Boss shawl collar tuxedo “because they wanted to go for a classic rat pack feel.” It must have been his good luck charm, because after seven years of denial, Kevin went home with his first Golden Globe.
For women, we had some bright pops of white, Kate Hudson, my pick of the night, in Versace, Rosamund Pike in Vera Wang, Emily Blunt, and Sienna Miller to name a few. Kate really brought it home in a deep plunging neckline and crystal straps covering mesh cutouts in a very sexy (and sensual) white gown. There was no mistaking the Versace brand in Kate’s gown–reminiscent of the famous Elizabeth Hurley safety pin gown by Versace many years ago.
Not all starlets were as daring and successful as Hudson. Some played it safe such as Amy Adams with her blue one-shoulder dress and “ho hum” hair. She seemed to be attempting that Hollywood glamour with a unfussy touch, but her hair came off unpolished and not Golden Globe-worthy, it even had a frizzy fly-away look when the light hit it when she was accepting her award—the horror!
Giuliana Rancic teetered on frat boy bullying pushing George Clooney’s tequila shots on unwitting attendees such as princess Amal Clooney. I don’t think she’s ever taken a shot of tequila, much less grabbed one in her white satin opera gloves paired with her Dior Haute Couture black gown.
TOP LOOKS FROM BEST TO GREAT
Plunging necklines were a theme, done successfully by Sienna Miller, J Lo, Kate Hudson, and Jessica Chastain. Though I rarely like Jessica Chastain, actress in “A Most Violent Year”, she really successfully pulled off her look, the bronze/black pleated low cut halter dress and old Hollywood deep side hair part came together beautifully.
Allison Williams attempted Old Hollywood hair with a deep side part and a faux bob. Her hairline had a too-pulled-back look that made it seem like she was wearing a wig—not the look I’m sure she was attempting for the Golden Globes Red Carpet. Her red Armani Prive sparkly tiered gown made up for the bad hair. And I must add that her makeup did her no favors either. She’s truly a beautiful girl, just had a hair and makeup FAIL for the Globes.
BOTTOM LOOKS FROM WORST TO BAD:
Feathers and sparkle were also ever-present on this Red Carpet. Some ups and some downs: Kiera Knightly for “Imitation Game” had a huge FAIL in Chanel Couture. She bragged about how 30 seamstresses sewed the dress in a week, but I think they should have used less seamstresses and focused on ONE good designer to draft the pattern. The dress was billowy and looked like a couture potato sack with a ruffle top to boot. It did a huge disservice to pregnant women everywhere. We know you can look hot when pregnant, why couldn’t Chanel do something fitted for Kiera? Chanel should have taken some notes from Givenchy if they wanted to do feathers and sparkle. Julianne Moore was stunning in her Custom Givenchy. But not all feathers won out. Another feathers fail was Claire Danes in Valentino. The “Homeland’ actress’s mesh top with feathers a plenty had horrible fit-it seemed to hang on her lithe top, in a heavy and unflattering way. Emma Stone was a breath of fresh air in the sparkle category. She wore a relaxed pantsuit with a sparkle strapless top cropped cigarette pant legs and a huge obi type black satin bow in the back.
Other relaxed looks of the night, some successful and some not so successful were: Ruth Wilson yes, Melissa McCarthy no, Katie Cassidy yes, Kristin Whig no, Lena Dunham no. Apparently Zac Posen was a former babysitter of hers and dressed her. I think he was skimping on the tailoring, maybe because her parents only paid him $4.75 an hour for his services back in the ’90’s. Lena prides herself in not caring about her looks. But please, if you are going to go to the Globes hire a makeup artist.
An Emmy Award-winning reporter and host for WGBH, Boston’s PBS television outlet, and its NPR radio station, WGBH-FM, Jared Bowen exudes the calm and authoritative demeanor viewers have come to expect from a seasoned journalist. As the city’s only remaining television arts and entertainment reporter, this Emerson College alum is also a busy guy, covering multiple cultural events a week in Boston and beyond. He hosts the weekly TV show “Open Studio with Jared Bowen,” contributes to WGBH-TV’s nightly news program “Greater Boston” and is a commentator for “Morning Edition” and the mid-day show “Boston Public Radio.” It should be noted that the dapper, blue-eyed bachelor possesses a finely tuned sense of humor and hasn’t – at least as far as we can tell – let all of his success go to his head. We caught up with the down-to-earth media maven in between him interviewing an Obie Award-winning playwright and prepping for a piece with a New York Times’ bestselling author.
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We all have holiday parties to get ready for, but who actually has the time to do it? I found the perfect dream team at Mario Russo. This lovable duo, Tavi DelaRosa and Violet Furxhi can take you from plain Jane to gorgeous diva in no time! I got to the salon at 11:00am and sat in Tavi’s chair.
He focuses his attention on the eyes because that is what people are drawn to. When discussing what was hot for holiday parties, Tavi said silvers, golds, and color with shimmer. He asked me what colors I liked and if I preferred smoky eye or natural eye. Of course I am drawn to smoky eye, it’s my signature look, and I feel like it’s a nod to my dear friend Marilyn Riseman. She was the doyenne of smoky eye. Tavi likes to build your whole look based on what you decide on for your eyes. We decided on blues because that would bring out my brown eyes.
**A little trick that I learned from Tavi is to use a cool blow dryer and diffuse it with your hand to help set the eyelash glue faster and stronger. Voila! I was done and makeup ready!
I wore a cute, plaid, button down shirt that I got from Intermix at the #msfitforsociety for Tedy’s Team event, because the last time I came in for an updo, I had a turtleneck on, which we all know is a no-no for updos because who can get the thing over their head without messing up their hair?
Recently, I felt somewhat annoyed to not see my favorite and most water-works trustworthy mascara atop Sephora’s list best rated eye beauty products. So, I felt I would give my favorite product the ode that it deserves.
Dear Diorshow Backstage Waterproof Mascara, I love you. While wearing this product I can cry Justin Timberlake a river; hell, I can cry him the entire Atlantic. Because, this baby ain’t gonna run-Dior and I guarantee it. Ladies, feel free to take a dip to beat the heat or stop living in denial and finally shed a tear over Prince William being taken off the market without the fear of looking like a raccoon afterwards.
GET IT HERE.
I am of the very strong opinion that brows can make or break a face. I’m sure you know her, hell maybe she’s you: a perfectly lovely girl who would be even lovelier were it not for those sad, sparse, over-plucked insect things above her
eyes. Tadpoles belong in ponds, not on your face.
Should you intend, despite my zealous urging to the contrary, to merely allude to having eyebrows, you may as well go all the way and just bleach them, à la Marc Jacobs’ S/S 2011 collection. Exercise this option with caution, however, as aside from Brigid Nastasia, Beyonce, and Arizona Muse, I haven’t seen many women pull this look off successfully.
But it begs the question: if we definitely shouldn’t pluck and probably shouldn’t bleach, what are we mere mortals supposed to do? Here, in a few simple steps, is my solution:
1) PUT THE TWEEZERS DOWN.
2) Call Lauren Genatossio at Sarra, 2010’s “Best of Boston” eyebrow shaper and the only woman in town I’ll let within 100 feet of me while holding tweezers. Within a few visits she’ll have you looking like you walked straight out of a Lincoln Center tent.
EDITOR AT LARGE
CHIEF FASHION CORRESPONDENT
Anna Paula Goncalves
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