Friday, March 7, 2014

#FashionFriday: Caroline Issa, an Iconic Style Muse "with a Lebanese Twist"

Don't you just love the expression "Lebanese Twist", used, re-used and re-reused to sell you sweets, mezze, crafts, businessmen & politicians?.. Well today I simply want to express my fandom!
Take a look at this beauty:

Caroline Issa, founder of Because London & editor of Tank magazine, grew up in Montreal with a Chinese mother and Lebanese-Persian father. I know, far fetched, but hey... I'm proud!! And I love this cosmopolitan mix that many Lebanese have, Beirut-London-Paris-Montreal-NYC... French-English-Arabic-Italian... It's the mixture that enriches. 
There are many influencers of Lebanese descent in fashion, but what Caroline represents is this fresh self confidence to pull up any color-texture-shape combination and still look dazzling, because she is so at ease with who she is, or at least that's what she conveys.


She has been a Londoner for more than 10 years, and that doesn't surprise me: London is such a versatile city, combining both history (like Paris) and dynamism (Like New York) which makes it the perfect capital for Tank & Because London.






Caroline is a daily source of inspiration for fashionistas around the globe, simply check google, tumblr & pinterest; but also for women entrepreneurs & pioneers of the fashion industry, as you can read here , here & here...

In conclusion? *sings* Tu es l'As de Trefle qui Pique mon fashion sense, Caro-line...

photos via the sartorialist & candice lake

Thursday, January 30, 2014

> The evolution of men's clothing in the past 5 years

I must say, working in a field that revolves around fashion is quite fun and very inspiring. I've learnt a lot since my childhood years when I used to devour my mom's ELLE, through my college years, and up till this very day... In fact, i cannot remember a season or a day when I found my job boring, or that fashion is repeating itself... True every season we have an "époque revival", inspired by movies, series or life in general (Gatsby this year, Downton Abbey two years ago etc...), but it is never a mere direct application. There is always a plus.


However, all these trends are much more visible in women's fashion, since women have a playful way to adapt catwalk style to their daily lives. But in the last five years I witnessed a MAJOR change in men's fashion, and more importantly, in men's attitudes towards fashion! They are not afraid to try new things, they are playful, creative, and we definitely feel that they are having fun putting together their daily outfit, just like we women do. HURRAY!!! Finally ;-)
Style is not solely reserved to the gentlemen in touch with their feminine side, it is your right messieurs! Claim it. It is sheer pleasure for us to see you dress (and undress) and the fact that it's now giving you pleasure as well makes you even sexier to our eyes.





 So what has changed exactly? Once again, social media! Thank God for Tommy Ton or the Sartorialist (among others) who have shown the world how the smart men in Pitti (the world famous fashion trade show) dress. And it has started a "boule de neige" that exploded all over the collections, even on the high street brands.








In conclusion? Messieurs, faites vos jeux!




Photos via Tommy Ton & Eton.

Friday, December 20, 2013

Beirut & the Four Seasons, a Passionate Love Affair

It's not the first time I am challenged to work on an amazing project for the Four Seasons Beirut; you've already had a glimpse of the video installation I did for the Roof two summers ago.
Only this time I've been asked by Christian Klaus their amazing F&B director to design: "An In-Room Dining Menu, which is not an In-Room Dining Menu"! "... Hmm, Pardon?" My eyes asked.
"Well, I want a book about Beirut, but not Ministry of Tourism Beirut, I want YOUR Beirut."
WOW. Is there a better brief you can get from a client? I mean, God knows I am passionate about my city, but could I let go? Put all my passion and guts into this book?
I did. And I invited Ghassan Koteit to capture this journey and take you on a 24 hour ride "Through Beirut"...

This is how it starts:

And here are a few of the pages:





After the ride, you have the menu on a thicker and more sensual aquarelle paper:


And it ends with a map of all the spots covered in the book, inviting the reader into the inner soul of my intricate complicated contradictory but oh-so beautiful city...



The book was just published this week, an exquisite farewell gift to Christian who's moving forward to FS San Francisco as Hotel Manager; may you inspire as many people there as you did in the last three years. And huge thanks to Four Seasons Beirut for this opportunity to design one of the most beautiful projects of my career.

Friday, November 29, 2013

> Postcard Christmas Tree

Every year since this beautiful paper tree, this BD tree and phone line tree, we challenge ourselves with the girls to find a funky Christmas Tree idea... Last year they wanted a more traditional tree (hence the white branches) but cool decorations.
So we decided to decorate it with all our postcard collection: from our travels, our painting exhibitions, drawings etc.. So we had Tuscany, Lisbon, Alsace, GB, Hopper, Kertesz etc mixed and shuffled altogether.
More mainstream than the others but full of emotion... right?






Friday, November 22, 2013

> Art Directing Lebanon

Lebanon & I have a very passionate affair, we fight a lot, but we can't live one without the other
'cause what can I say? When it's love it never varies!
And one thing I absolutely adore, is when clients ask me for work related to Lebanon...
So Happy Independence day to all the optimists and "poptimists" out there ;-)


















And this too:







Wednesday, November 6, 2013

> Have all trendy french fashion brands become one?

That's my impression actually!
There were these bespoke "petites marques françaises" with each its own identity, but now every time I flip through a magazine or look at billboards or shop windows, I feel they've all "united" into only One look! One pause! One haircut! (or two actually...)
I mean c'mon guys have you no imagination at all? Of course we love each one of you equally, and we LOVE your difference; I feel like I'm lecturing my little girls here...









Am I right or is that just an impression?
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