ChicFinds drives us into the sun

Beautiful things

There are so many amazing photographers and I would love to profile them all! However for our 5th ChicFind for August we are being transported by the images of  Mikael Jansson who I adore. Mikael Jansson started his career by assisting Richard Avedon and it shows. He says he photographs what he see’s, it’s as easy as that. He loves to tell a story and help communicate nostalgia.Take us away as the long days approach and summer is in the air. It’s time to bare down and get out the gold and silver, beige and earth tones and start dreaming. Mine is the classic two seater Mercedes Benz! ha see you at the beach. X

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Come Dance With Me

Beautiful things

Dance, dance, and dance some more.  One of the most beautiful things to do and it’s origins are nostalgic to me, the ballet and the school of ballet are wonderful memories. The dance school is something we can always return to over the course of our life. Maybe not ballet past a certain age but there are so many forms of dance including modern, funk, chakra, Salsa, Tango, Ballroom, the list goes on and they are all timeless and have elements of the traditional. The classic ballet is still a wonder that many enjoy and the modern interpretations like those of the Australian Ballet or the Ballet de l’Opéra national de Paris are fresh and inspiring. If you are traveling or at home and one of the amazing dance companies comes your way it is well worth the ticket. One of the most beautiful opera houses is la Scala in Milano. You can find a magnificent calandar  of opera, ballet, theatre and concerts. http://www.teatroallascala.org/en/index.html The same can be said for the Opera National De Paris http://www.operadeparis.fr/cns11/live/onp/ but I would also suggest to you the caberet show Crazy Horse  which is avant garde caberet show (a more intimate and sexier version of Le Girls) http://www.lecrazyhorseparis.com/ Don’t miss Black Swan directed by Darren Aronofsky with Natalie Portman and Vincent Cassel. Natalie Portman makes a truly amazing performance.Between the 17th of September and 11th of December you can find “Degas Dancers: Eye and Camera at Royal Academy of Arts in London.

Let me finish this 4th top pick ChicFind with another favorite photographer of mine; Paolo Roversi. He started in a dark room and developed a love for black & white. In 1970 he started collaborating with Associated Press and later moved to Paris to work as a reporter for Huppert Agency. Inspired by reporters he gradually moved into fashion photography where he became well known for his polaroid style using a hasselblad camera.In September there is the festival of Russian Ballet in Australia so check this link for dates; http://www.russianballet.com.au/festival-of-russian-ballet.html

Mario Testino has the Midas touch

Interiors

Mario Testino is the master at turning the most banal situation into the most glamorous and sexy image. He is famous for photographing well known celebrities and has worked with the best magazines in the world while shooting advertising campaigns for the most luxurious brands in the world. I think of him as having the Midas touch, turning everything he touches into Gold.Two other colors that create classic yet timelessness are gold and silver. Black, White, Gold and Silver are a palette that will rarely age. Most beautiful are the venetian mirrors in either finish. They have such a romantic feel and they are so undated that they will fit any style of interior; deco to contemporary. If in Paris, visit Home Prive, 7 Rue de Birague. In Sydney visit The Country Trader in Waterloo and Parterre Gardens in Woollahra.A classic garment that I think is one of the best inventions so far is the trench. Everyone must have one as part of their wardrobe. It is a dateless garment and the masters are Burberry. If you cant quite cope with the latest at retail you must persevere by looking through flea markets or vintage stores. The best vintage you can find in Paris is Le Depot-Vente de Buci-Bourbon, 6 Rue de Bourbon-le-Chateau, Metro: Mabillon. Cavalli & Nastri have two stores in Milano and they are so beautiful you will need time to ponder and wonder without being in a rush. http://www.cavallienastri.com . In London you need to rummage through the various vintage stores on Kings Road and visit Portobello markets on a Saturday. In New York  visit the flea market on Columbus Avenue on the 77th St. Here it is certain that you can find some really ChicFinds. X

Chicfinds L’African

fashion, Interiors

Peter Beard is another favorite photographer that also falls under our theme of classic for ChicFinds top August finds. His photography and subjects have a  timeless quality and a raw connection to nature. Often his subjects are not only classic beauty’s like Verushka or Jacqueline Kennedy but the animals of Africa. His diaries have been made into beautiful books and his talent has also been shown in the 2009 Pirelli Calandar. If you get a chance have a look on You Tube at the making of this calandar! Absolutely incredible, wild animals with amazon beauties such as Daria Werbowy and Maria Carla in the African jungle. http://www.peterbeard.com/

Africa inspires many things; some of it is magic. It is one of the most beautiful countries and Peter Beard is a genius at the way in which he captures it. There are few places in the world that offer beautiful African products but I can name two that I feel are a stand out. One is Island Luxe Tribe in Byron Bay and Bangalow. This is a very beautiful store that nurtures the true African product. They also stock some beautiful brands with a timeless quality like Belstaff which is a heritage brand of premium quality.  Orient House in Glebe have some magnificent products from the African theme as well as Oriental and Asian. If you are in Milano you need to visit AOC (African Oriental Craft) in Via Confalonieri. You will find some great pieces there.

Peter Beard

Support Africa in anyway you can by giving money or support to the charity of your choice. They need our help. In the coming weeks I will have a charity to suggest to you and I will have information about this organisation and set up but in the meantime sponsor a child or give a donation so that the giving begins. X

August’s top Chicfinds starts with Classic’s

fashion, Photography

In the Cambridge dictionary the definition of Classic is ‘having a high quality or standard against which other things are judged’. How do things that are classic make us feel? Timeless, familiarity, sense of quality and elegance. What is is about the blue and white stripe that keeps going and going? It’s classic! Classic is also beautiful, traditional and it’s something that’s so right it can never go wrong. Chicfinds reminds you of the classic so that you know in this world of so much choice what is trend and going and what is classic and staying. . Our first inspiration for what is classic is the black & white photography of one of my favorite photographers, Peter Lindberg. His photography is so classic you wouldn’t know when a shot was taken despite being in the pages of Vogue Italia month after month. The trends translate but with a timeless quality. His frames are so touching and intimate and his style is natural yet eyes are often set in black coal. Black & White are undeniably classic and chic in any shape or form. Lingbergh’s photography is cinemagraphic and theatrical yet he captures a purity and innocence in his portraiture.This is such a famous shot I could hardly not include it and it is such an inspiration to our theme; classic as it shows the beauty of the white shirt. You can’t compete with a beautiful white cotton shirt on either a man or a woman. For a superior level shirt visit one of the Harrolds Stores   you can’t go past the selection by Tom Ford. For the ladies visit Riada in Woollahra, Sydney where there is a beautiful selection of brands including HIGH, Jil Sander Navy and Marithe Francois Girbaud.

Chicfinds August Summer Holidays

Travel

Oops, I forgot I no longer live in Europe and so August is no longer my vacation time. What a shame! I am so jealous of all my friends as they go on vacation now and the big European cities become ghost towns while everyone exits to go find some fun, sun and love.

My top 5 are Formentera, Sardegna, Greece, Ibiza and France….Formentera is one of the gorgeous Pine Islands south of Ibiza. It has the most splendid beaches and the waters are crystal clear. The beach culture here is so sensual and relaxing with white sands, sunsets, bars on the beaches with sounds of famous DJ’s. It is still a very natural island and possesses a certain magic. You have go there to know what I mean. For the latest on what’s happening in Ibiza take a look at this informative blog by Maya Claughton.In Greece I would recommend Pathmos, Mykonos and of course Santorini. The islands are magnetic, dynamic and so beautiful you will never forget the energy and forces that you experience when you go. The rhythm is so relaxing you will take no time in feeling like you are a part of its irresistible nature.

Sardegna is the island that takes you captive. Its waters, sands and coast line are unique and so breathtaking you should go around by boat (around the Costa Smeralda). You will be hypnotised by this island and its sensual beauty.Of course there is the Cote d’Azur, but a little secret jewel undiscovered by many is the Ile du Levant. It is a nudist island but you are not forced to be naked. You can enjoy the most sensational nature on this little island with the many scents of the most luscious vegetation surrounded by the sparkling Mediterranean. The hotels, restaurants and brasseries are all of a very good standard and add to the chicness and sheer elegance of this tropical and magical paradise. Click here to read more about Ile du Levant and for good deals in travel in general visit i-escape.com

Buona vacanza tutti mie amici vi invidio tanto X

Chicfinds inspires lighting from the past

Interiors

There is probably not a more important element in the home than lighting. Of course comfort in seating and so on is of up most important but you can be seated in absolute luxury  but if you are sitting in neon lighting something is Wrong! Lighting is what creates an atmosphere more than anything else and since modern architecture a lot of lighting has become a part of the home, in the ceiling, walls and floors. It does enhance the structure of your home when you have ceiling lighting and even better, floor and wall but it is a must to compliment it with side lights or lights with beautiful shades. I love wall lights, they are so romantic and create a pathway and a feeling of intimacy. Lighting is so elegant and so much a part of a home’s decor that you can not ignore its complete necessity.Lights are a way of loving ourselves and our space, they break the shadows and light up a corner and a space in such a perfect way.

Chicfinds Handbag Rental

fashion

I think in these times it is important to watch what you are consuming and that of course includes fashion items. It is not always necessary to buy something new for an occasion even though it does feel nice to have something different. To make up for that there are a few web businesses that are renting designer products. So far they are still in their early stages but the idea is fantastic. You can rent a designer bag, dress and accessories for a weekly or monthly rent and at the end you hand it back and you have not spent a fortune on something you wont wear again or you didn’t need in the first place. After looking around the best one (and there is room for improvement as the selection is not huge but they do seem to have the best product) is Mila & Eddi; another one that is quite good but not yet a chic find level but worth supporting is Love me and Leave me.

Save your earnings for a rainy day and dress up for a little off the retail price!

Chicfinds inspiration to go from winter to summer

Beauty, fashion

ChicFinds inspiration this month from Gweneth Patrow’s blog. All categories are well worth a look and I can really relate to her sense of being, taste and style. I have really enjoyed the detox diets, the to BE newsletters and her fitness guru, Tracey Anderson. Her workouts are amazing! I have also been busy looking at summer pieces for a holiday in Thailand so there will be some posts to look out for including a beautiful five star hotel in Bangkok and more…. We will also have our top 5 ChicFinds for August so you must keep checking in.

For now checkout http://goop.com and if you want to feel the days for summer arriving start having a look at your next swimming costumes from the queen land of swimming costumes – Brazil. Favorites are Salinas and Rosa Cha http://www.salinas-rio.com.br/ http://www.rosacha.com.br/site_verao_2011/ Photography David Slijper for Marie Claire Italia June 2011