From São Paulo with fashion -Rhodia 1960s Fashion

São Paulo is a big and vibrant city. I only had two days to have a feel of life in this dense city with its skyscrappers. I was told the most encompassing way to absorb the essence of São Paulo was to explore around Jardins which is one of the most culture- centric and artistic area of the city. Lucky for me, my friend lives a block away from Avenida Paulista, ‘São Paulo’s Wall Street’ so it was easy for me to get around.

imageSão Paulo street art – Jardim da Luz

Few hours after my 17 hour flight and I was wandering around shopping malls and I also took a lap around Rua Augusta which is a hipster-esque area with colourful and vintage shops. I decided to escape the noise of the traffic for a bit and visit the Trianon Park which is just off the Paulista Ave. The fresh breeze and sound of birds chirping made me forget that I was still in a big city of near 12 million inhabitants.

imageOne of the highlights of São Paulo was the Museum of Modern Art (Museu de Arte de São Paulo – MASP). The MASP architecture is very interesting. Suspended from two large columns, the building hangs in the air like a large block of concrete – amazing engineering!!

imageI decided to check what was being exhibited and i was in total awe with what welcomed me. Yes, there were rows and rows of clothes!

imageFor the first time MASP was showing 79 pieces of its Rhodia fashion collection which featured clothes created through a collaboration between artists and designers in the 1960s. This collection in MASP is the only one still remaining.

imageI was mesmerised by the colourfulness of the collection. A mixture of afro print and a touch of Asian fusion gave the collection a very rich look. These two evening dress were my favourites.

imageThis printed palazzos were also amazing. They were well tailored and the fabric was well weaved. This could be a lovely evening wear if you are bold enough to wear it.

imageThis well presented collection showed that fashion certainly revolves, because what was fashionable in the 1960s is certainly unique and inspire creativity today. Judging from excited faces in the gallery, it will inspire creativity and boost current fashion system.

image.jpegMy trip had no fashion on the agenda but São Paulo unexpectedly brought history of Brazilian fashion to me. What an adventure!!

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The boardroom to happy hour dress code

Professional life is becoming a 24/7 norm these days. We are constantly running around from one business meeting to another. However, in all that hustle and bustle of work life, there remains a need to reconnect with our social side. Everyone wants time to just mingle and giggle to none work related jokes over drinks or dinner once in a while. We all need the happy hour!!

So, you have a business meeting out of office which will go for the whole day but you also have that overdue dinner, drinks or cocktail party with your friends or colleagues. You are so excited about the day ahead but you find yourself in a dilemma on what to wear. If you are like me, bringing a separate set of clothes is just excessive baggage – totally inconvenient, going home to change is time consuming and by the time you get to the bar, happy hour is over. So what do you do? One easy solution is to wear an outfit that can easily take you from day to night hustle free.

The Good Wife

Sheath dress– is something you can easily wear from work to happy hour. A well-tailored, full or quarter sleeved, not too tight, and not too short sheath dress can bring a lot of class and femininity in a business meeting that is full of suits. If the dress is sleeveless, then wear a blazer to accompany it.

imageThe Good Wife’s Alicia Florrick (Julianna Margulies) is an inspirational example of how to power dress for the office and for the night out and her collection of blazers is to die for.

image                           Julianna Margulies as Alicia Florrick series THE GOOD WIFE

imageA pencil skirt – wear a pencil skirt with a crop top and throw a blazer on top and you are ready for that big business meeting, you take the blazer off when out.

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Black tights – Another accessory that can transform your outfit are black tights. Yes, you don’t really have to worry about the length of your hemline and you can look respectable and ladylike. After the meeting, you can bare your lovely legs again for the happy hour.

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Jumpsuit – is another quick fix to the day to night transformation. If you are not keen on blazers (why wouldn’t you though!) then wear a jumpsuit instead. It’s simple, quick and It’s easy to wear and you will look the part in both places.

imageAlways follow the business fashion etiquette, which is to dress classy but keep things professional even during happy hour!!

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‘Don’t look like me, look like you!’- Fashion vs Style

Flicking through the Guardian Weekend Magazine which my colleague had left on my desk, I came across an Amazon Fashion Advert with the caption: ‘Don’t look like me, look like you’ and it made me wonder, are we constantly trying to look like someone else?

Fashion magazines bombard us with how we should look. We are convinced that we could look just like those manicured models in magazines or catwalks if we dress like them and sadly, most of us tend to go this route when it comes to clothes! Imagine if we all look and dress the same? Well, I think that definitely would be a dull world. That’s why developing your own style makes the fashion world interesting!

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Style and fashion are different in some way. You express your individuality and uniqueness through your dress style and it’s your signature – it is the REAL you. Fashion, on the other hand, is about the look that is trending and popular at a given time and then it’s gone, that’s why we have weekly or monthly fashion magazines.

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Audrey Hepburn and Marilyn Monroe are still the style icons of all time. Why? They set themselves apart from the rest. Marilyn Monroe had the curves and personality to create that feminine, sexy image which she was known for.

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Audrey Hepburn’s style showed grace, class, sophistication and elegance. Her style suited her trimmed, slim and sporty body and her philosophy comes down to understanding what makes her feel comfortable in her own skin. I think acquiring your own sense of personal style gives you a sense of ownership and confidence while making you feel good about yourself!

imageDo not be swayed by the models in glossy magazines and fashion trends especially when you already have your personal style. Of course, fashion magazines are tools to complement your looks not to change who you are.

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A famous Greek Philosopher once said “Know, first, who you are; and then adorn yourself accordingly.” – Epictetus

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