“Fab Five Favs!” #18 for Women’s Collections FW2011


Here we are once again in the midst of NYFW, as I “Stop In The Name of Love!” -Diana Ross (in memory of 9/11) and stop in the name of Fashion to share with you my Fab Five Favs for the FW2011 women’s collections. You will notice that there’s a connective thread of Drama in my selections, The Drama that went with the Tents, The delicious element of Theatrics that is the “weakest link” at Lincoln Center where a certain corporate aura pervades.

Just as a Circus is not complete without its’ Clowns, NYFW is not complete without the Drama & Theatrics that Mr. McQueen & Mr. Galliano, to name a few, showed us make fashion complete. Where is that gusto, that bravado to take the risk of creative expression? I hope that it didn’t die with the lost of McQueen? I do hope that we will all be inspired by great artist, like McQueen, to live true to our artistic voice and not allow it to be drowned out by all the corporate noise!

Yes, we must sell clothes. But, guess what folks? Drama & Theatrics do sell a garment! 661,509 that was the record-breaking number of folks that attended the  Alexander McQueen – Savage Beauty exhibit at the MET. Trust and believe, they all own a piece of a McQueen collection or they brought a piece of McQueen at the MET gift shop! I still remember ever so clearly sitting at my first fashion show, CHRISTIAN LACROIX SS1993 collection femme. “I experienced my first viewing of the CHRISTIAN LACROIX collection arriving straight from the KIT-KAT stoned out of my face and sporting John Walke’s grey dress that David wore for the World Ball 3 with my new motorcycle boots, Zilon leather jacket, leather cap and huge shades, Work Miss Mommy!” My invitation was for standing, but I sat with the press in prime seats next to Cindy Crawford (they thought I was GRACE JONES), Thank You! It was absolutely beautiful without a doubt and worth viewing at 9:30AM.” (excerpt’ from my Journals). All the Drama of African Goddesses adorned in shells, beads, and tons of billowing chiffon in many different colorful and feminine prints bringing it to me on the runway mesmerized for weeks, and to this day LACROIX is one of my all time Favs!


Lee Alexander McQueen, (17 March 1969 – 11 February 2010) was a British fashion designer and couturier best known for his in-depth knowledge of bespoke British tailoring, his tendency to juxtapose strength with fragility in his collections, as well as the emotional power and raw energy of his provocative fashion shows. He is also known for having worked as chief designer at Givenchy from 1996 to 2001 and for founding his own label under the name Alexander McQueen. His achievements in fashion earned him four British Designer of the Year awards (1996, 1997, 2001 and 2003), as well as the CFDA’s International Designer of the Year award in 2003.


Known in the British fashion world as the original enfant terrible, McQueen the youngest of six children, born to an East End taxi driver, and left school at 16, describing himself as the “pink sheep” of the family – an outsider, though much-loved. He took an apprenticeship at Savile Row tailors Anderson and Sheppard and later at Gieves & Hawkes, where, he later admitted, he once chalked “I am a cunt” inside the lining of a suit destined for the Prince of Wales.



Like McQueen, I was very much aware of who I was as a child, and felt outcast because of it. But, like McQueen, it made me the “cunt” I am today, and gave me the strength to become the host of “ELEMENTS of FIERCE!”, a talk show that “celebrates artist/entrepreneurs carving new paths as they fulfill their mission to make our world a better place.” I never wear pants on my talk show because “you can learn more wearing a dress for a day than wearing pants for a lifetime!” As far as I’m concerned, pants are boring. Gowns, kaftans, long skirts, and dresses are far more exciting, elegant, sexy, and glamorous!

Thomas P. Campbell, the Director of The Metropolitan Museum of Art, which hosted Alexander McQueen – Savage Beauty, says: “Alexander McQueen’s iconic designs constitute the work of an artist whose medium of expression was fashion”

It puzzles me that on the artistic grounds of Lincoln Center, fertile with the wonderful drama that Opera, Ballet, and Classical Music brings, NYFW seems to lack a certain luster.

“I respect this business, and I understand the risks involved, but I also want to preserve a degree of spontaneity,” Ms. Carine Roitfeld, the former editor of French Vogue, said in the interview that I recently read By GUY TREBAY Published: September 08, 2011 in the New York Times. “Fashion has become an industry, one that increasingly stifles creation.” Fashion, as Ms. Roitfeld noted, “is nothing without its carefree side.” I concur!


The New York Times Style Magazine trends section is a great guide and source of inspiration for selecting those key elements to keep your wardrobe up to date.

Here are my Fab Five Favs for FW2011 which start off with a Christopher Kane Crocheted V-Neck Knit $2930. The Novelty Knit is a key element to top off any look and an important addition to your wardrobe. This look is a 70’s sexy revamp of the Bohemian days of  Woodstock

which takes me back to the time when my mother would knit sweaters for us when we were young. We lived in those sweaters as if they were our second skin. I definitely would enjoy having a Christopher Kane knit as a second skin!


Drama is in full effect with this seasons long, lean, and luscious coats. My choice for FW2011 is a Rodarte maize, boucle, mohair coat with fringe (price upon request). I love the pure Victorian lines that an elegant height to any feminine figure. This clean silhouette is timeless perfection!


The 30’s are back and covered up is once again alluring and chic! The Retro Dress that I simple adore is Marc Jacobs reinvention of a collared and puff sleeve dress for Louis Vuitton $7000.


A Big, Chunky piece of Jewelry will also add the spice necessary to take your look to the next level and separate you from the masses. After working with LYNN BAN as an Evening Wear Specialist at Barney’s NY, I can truly testify to her commitment to quality, and to staying on the cutting edge in the world of fashion. I simple adore this Silver Diamond Edged Cuff $2,825 and all its’ Bold Drama!



Leave it to Marc Jacobs to take the concept of a Rubber Boot to an entirely whole other level! Simple put, the $940 Rubber Boot he designed for the FW2011 Louis Vuitton is “Sickening!” Surely, “These boots were made for walking,” and will “walk all over you” if you’re not careful.


In Alexander McQueen’s final SS2009 Women’s Collection Charles Darwin’s “Survival of The Fittest” was his source of inspiration to create one of his most commercially viable collections. McQueen has definitely paved the way as a pioneer showing us that there’s much more to fashion than just fine tailoring!

For those of you who, like myself, are on a budget and your eyes bulged at the quoted prices for my Fab Five Favs, I give Fashion Consultations and Make-Overs at the showroom of Boutique Flea 57 Rutland Road (btwn Flatbush/Bedford Ave) where we can recreate these Vintage and Retro looks at low, low prices. Call/Text me for an appointment at 917.640.1962, BEAU-T BY BLANE.




Mission Statement: "ELEMENTS of FIERCE!" is a celebration of artistic expression! The founder, Blane Charles, explores not what people wear, but who is wearing it? He feels that we all have a special style waiting to be shared with the world. Blane also wants to celebrate freedom of expression, uniqueness, individuality, and authenticity! Stay tuned to my "FAB FIVE FAVS!" where I feature five works of inspiration and beauty from my day to day travels.
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2 Responses to “Fab Five Favs!” #18 for Women’s Collections FW2011

  1. Terrific commentary! Loved your picks. For anyone out there, I’ve been to the store on Rutland Ave: believe me it’s worth the trip..costs are ridiculously low and Blane’s eye is amazing. Do yourself a favor and go!

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