Style Inspiration: American high-schools in 1969
By Elisa Eymery, Wandering Minds founder
James, our co-founder and genius ‘digital mechanic’ guy, may be a huge geek but he also has an extremely good eye for style. He recently sent me a link to a series of photos which had been taken in an American high-school in 1969, and we were both struck by how cool these people looked. To me, it highlighted what our style direction at Wandering Minds is all about: simple but well-made pieces which put together in an interesting way create effortless, quietly confident looks with a bit of an edge. The edge doesn’t scream at you though, it just sings in a whisper (I’m in a poetic mood today, as you can see).
The thing that I love the most in the photos is the play with proportions and lengths. High-waisted bottoms were teamed with very simple jersey t-shirts or tank tops, tucked in so as to create volume and structure. Outfits were completed by knee-high socks, reasonable but cool-looking shoes and slightly crazy accessories.
The prints were unexpected, the fabrics contrasted and the pops of colour vibrant and full of joy. The silhouettes were tailored, but in a very relaxed way, with easy shift dresses, softly structured blouses and buttoned-down shirts made funky and fun.
These young people dressed in a spontaneous and joyful way, and I think we all ought to recapture this fun, experimental and individual way of dressing everyday.
Micro-shoot 1: Elevated street wear
By Elisa, Wandering Minds founder
A few days ago we did a ‘micro-photoshoot’ with two of my stunningly beautiful friends. The idea of the micro-shoots - we’ll do a lot more of these in the future - is that we put a cool outfit together and shoot it very quickly, just to get our creativity going and have some fun.The models, Olivia and Tonya, went to the same school as the Wandering Minds crew. It is rather lucky that I happen to be surrounded by amazing looking girls - when you’re a broke entrepreneur, it’s all about exploiting your network.
We put the girls in our oversized pleated sweaters by Seoul designer Grace Raiment. Olivia was wearing her own Levi’s shorts, and Tonya was wearing our high waisted red wool shorts. It was actually Roxane’s (Wandering Minds social media queen) idea to have them wear the same outfits in contrasting colours. I had reservations at first, but turns out the outfits worked amazingly well together, giving a cool 1990s team-supermodel look to the girls, which was a bit cheesy in the best possible way.
The photoshoot made me fall in love with these sweaters even more. Their oversized shape and cropped length make them move in a very inadvertently sexy way, revealing little bits of skin every time you raise an arm. The pleats make them look completely unique, in fact I’ve never seen anything quite like it, anywhere. We teamed the sweaters with high-waisted shorts, the contrasts in volumes and lengths bringing the whole outfit to another level. This is what I called elevated casual street wear.
Recreate the Look: Eva Mendes in NYC
By Lucie Goulet, Wandering Minds strategy and PR guru
We’re not saying wearing our bright red Grace Raiment cotton sweater will bag you a Ryan Gosling, but, Hey Girl, Eva Mendes’ outfit is just too cool for boyfriend envy. The perennial movie hot girl, Mendes was spotted strolling alongside actor-of-the-moment Gosling in New York City last week. We love how she teamed her top with contrasting combat trousers, funky sunglasses and towering wedges for a great casual look.
With such a stunning top, the trick is to keep other items of clothing simple and minimalist. Emerging Korean designer Raiment likes pairing her own design with tailored white short for an effective and demure preppy play on proportions. You can achieve a similar effect with dark stone wash skinny jeans. If you’re looking for a more polished, work-appropriate look, wear the tomato red sweater with a pencil skirt, killer heels and clean-line accessories.
Designer focus: Grace Raiment
Today is going to be epic for Wandering Minds, as 1) we are receiving the first part of the collection of a great designer that we discovered on our latest trip to Seoul in February and 2) finding space for the new stock in the start-up flat will be more than a little challenging.
I met Sojung Kim, the designer and founder of Korean brand Grace Raiment in her tiny and magical office in one of the up-and-coming creative areas of Seoul. Lost in a sea of moodboards, fabric swatches, samples, drawings, hangers, and Korean chitchat, I instantly fell in love with her style and her collection. Sojung graduated in fashion design at the renowed Seoul Ehwa Women’s University, famous in the whole of Asia for training some amazingly talented young designers. Sojung can’t be much older than 27, and yet she has developed a strong individual aesthetics, along with outstanding tailoring skills, which you can see consistently across her SS12 collection.
The brand is about youthful and effortless feminity, with touches of androgyny, creating relaxed and minimal silhouettes. They’re clothes for girls who can pull off simple looks. What also stands out for me is the soft tailoring, incredible fabrics and detailing that makes all the difference.
This season, Sojung Kim created timeless and subtly flirtatious pieces, with unique detailing, in faux innocent white and accents of tomato red. Think posh girl goes to Wimbledon and seduces everyone around her without even trying. We’ll be stocking little summer dresses - one with a cool bow at the back and one with wide pleats - in a beautiful white cotton fabric with thin red stripes; effortless white blouses with unique and subtle detailing - a high neckline, or a thin striped textured fabric in a loose shape; simple but striking breton stripe tops in red or blue and white; an oversized but slightly short sweater top with horizontal pleats, in tomato red or preppy navy. And the list goes on!
Boys and girls, we’re no longer in the high-street, find-anywhere domain, this is designer stuff (at a great mid-range price point), the type of clothes that you will keep for years and that will become part of you.
Grace Raiment office in trendy Seoul
Loose-fit pleated sweater top in tomato red
Wimbledon pleated striped dress
Relaxed white stripe textured blouse
Relaxed white stripe textured blouse
Red and white breton stripe top
Forget-me-not white textured dress
Denny’s column - A gay guy’s guide to dress stylishly: khaki and navy hunting gear
by Denny Lv, Wandering Minds Web Analytics specialist.
I’m a big believer in the idea that truly stylish men and women essentially dress in the same way. The slightly utilitarian, posh hunter look is one of these looks that work brilliantly on both men and women. You can either go khaki or navy, depending on whether you want to go for the lion hunter or hot sailor look.
Back in January 2011, Elisa and I went on our first ‘routine’ Paris sales trip - she’d been doing that for years while I lost my Paris Winter Sales virginity on this occasion. We stopped at what would become our absolute favourite sales spot in Paris, the flagship APC store on Rue Madame. That year, Elisa and I both found great hunting clothes: I found a pair of slightly quirky but definitely lovely forest green trousers; Elisa got a great coat in the same colour, with a brown collar and brown leather buttons and detailing, which had a distinct I’m-on-my-way-to-shoot-foxes flavour, but in a cool way - despite James ‘Testino’ Haydon’s comment - our brilliant mathematical brain at Wandering Minds - that Elisa looked like a hunting dog in that coat.
Me, not being a big fan of girls who dress like pretty little dolls, love it when girls pull off casual looks like the ones pictures below. I’ve seen many uber-stylish girls - including our lovely CEO at wandering minds - wearing slightly oversized shirts/cardigans/jumpers either from their boyfriends or from products branded as “boyfriend’s [xx]”. I particularly like our navy spring parka at Wandering Minds - completely androgynous but oh-so-cute - in fact I could quite see myself wearing it. The shape and fit of menswear adds the perfect amount of ease and cool and perfect for creating off-duty looks for cool girls. In some occasion, men can also borrow their women’s wardrobe, which is more rare but can work equally brilliantly; Jonathan - see picture below - featured in one of my favourite sites - Hel looks - looks awesome wearing his girl friend’s ragged olive shorts. Good style is most definitely genderless.
Elisa in her APC hunting coat - Brick Lane, London
Oversized navy parkas are hot
Boyish parkas work brilliantly for women too. Navy Spring Parka, from Wandering Minds
Guys can also steal their girl friend’s clothes for a great hunting look
Front Row Society Printed Silk Scarves Giveaway
Printed scarves are the one accessory that cools girls can’t do without these days, the more colourful and unique the print, the better. Worn as headbands, on handbags or around your neck with a simple tee, they are the star accessory of the season. Well, luckily for you, dear friends and followers, we have teamed with online magazine thelondonlook.com to organise a great giveaway. You can win a beautifully edgy printed scarf from cool Berlin brand Front Row Society; you will get to choose between two different prints, abstract blossom or city pattern.
These prints have been designed by artists and voted in for production by the Front Row Society community. I love both scarves equally, depending on my mood. The abstract blossom print evokes a brilliantly chaotic and fun spring day, with psychedelic splashes of light pink, peach, yellow, bright blue and green. The city pattern print looks both tough and feminine; the yellow base, bright pink vertical strikes and blue-green diamond shapes create a dynamic and vibrant print.
Best of luck!!
Style Inspiration: Elle Fanning by Venetia Scott
There are some images that have a certain something that will particularly appeal to your visual, style and fashion sensibilities. Even better when it’s a whole photoshoot. Venetia Scott’s shots of Elle Fanning published recently in Self Service Magazine somehow hit the right buttons for me. It’s not that I particularly love the clothes, nor Elle Fanning for that matter. But Venetia Scott’s pictures convey a compelling mix of youthful cookiness, quiet confidence and optimism and plain good old fun. The slightly retro colour tones, middle class setting, and vibrant prints are both comforting and exciting; the lengths, volumes and textures are fashion-forward but not intimidating. Finally, the fact that Elle Fanning doesn’t have supermodel looks, but still looks great and comfortable in the clothes is also very endearing. It makes fashion fun and approachable again, when so many fashion spreads look beautiful but completely unattainable. I always try to remember this fashion feel-good factor when buying our collections for Wandering Minds, because clothes should ultimately be fun and enjoyable to wear.
Buyer Power: Quirky Knits for Spring
So it has become cold again in London, damn it! But I simply can’t go back to my black/grey boringly non-printed winter clothes. I-Just-Can’t. Just as well that I fell in love with a range of vibrant, cloud embroidered knitted jumpers in my last buying trip in Seoul. It was -20°C back then, and I frankly don’t know how I survived - perhaps by spending my days AND nights (not an exaggeration, the best fashion stores in Seoul close at 6am, and re-open at 10am) *working* (shopping) in overheated shopping malls, department stores, concept stores and designers’ studios.
I fell in love with these cloud jumpers because, first of all, they had clouds on them; now I haven’t seen much cloud prints in Europe in the last months/decades, which is surprising because clouds are lovely things, conceptually, with their whimsical shape, and make for a delightfully unexpected print. Secondly, these jumpers looked so cool but also so comfortable: the light but still warm knitted fabric, the slightly oversized shape and high round neck, they were all just right. Finally, they came in three different colour combinations, and because I couldn’t choose which one I preferred, I bought the three of them for our store; I felt that each colour would better match certain personalities and moods, and who am I to interfere with that; the bright pink with green clouds would satisfy the slightly cooky girls with a love for neon; the light blue, infused with a touch of grey, with ivory clouds would suit thoughtful, introspective moods; while the white jumper with navy clouds, almost nautical in feel (if a cloud could ever be nautical), would be perfect for girls who recognize the importance of rules, yet know the necessity of transgressing them.
Get the jumpers in our store now!