Brick Lane, a fashion cocktail

One week ago, I decided to take a little break for a few days in one of the most stimulating city of the world… London, obviously. I found out this singular place which is a little gem hidden.

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Among all its facets, Brick Lane is a neighborhood very focused on fashion. Indeed, Brick Lane is one of the top place for fashion in London. Today, the neighborhood is known for its vintage shops and small designers.

In the streets there are many thrift stores, such as Absolute Vintage, a large vintage frippery located at 15 Hanbury Street. Inside there is a bit of everything: colorful shirts, psychedelic pants, tailors, but especially a lot of shoes ( boots, pumps, high heels, sandals…), bags and purses, all more unique and original than the others.

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There is something for all tastes. It’s difficult to find elsewhere what we bought here. Objects are unique. The sellers are very nice, welcoming and known how to advise. In the same area other stores are veritable treasure cave: for example the Shop 72, which presents the creations of independent designers.

But the shops does’nt make everything, the best show is in the street. People of all ages, all nationalities are walking and have in common their styles, or rather madness and originality of their outfits. Sometimes we can wonder how it’s possible to find that kind of clothes really implausible.

Styles are very differents, it’s very inspiring. It’s like a live performance, a constant parade, a fashion show. It’s easy to get into this special atmosphere of madness and extravagance.

In London and especially in Birck Lane, it’s possible to wear anything and everything without being stared by passers. People are free to be who they want, young or old, from any country, and let freedom at their imagination and their appareance. Fashion is not only material in Brick Lane, it also has a share of tolerance and freedom.

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Let Lucy rock your dressing

“To create a relaxed, friendly atmosphere where customers can have fun, find wonderful and affordable clothes to love and lovely people to chat to.”
This is the description of Lucy’s lounge by the owners of the place. And what a perfect description !
Lucy’s lounge is second hand and vintage clothes shop located in the heart of Temple Bar. Earlier this month, I came across this little gem by chance. I was with a friend from France who came to visit me.
We are two great lovers of vintage and kitsch stuff so when we saw those building walls painted pink and purple this directly have caught our eyes. Getting closer, we found a stroller not very common…
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The most kitsch stroller ever seen and a panel indicating “vintage” at the door, it was enough to decide to enter the shop. The ground floor belongs to Se Si brand, separated by a floor from Lucy’s lounge but it’s in the same spirit as Lucy’s Lounge apart the fact that they seem more interested in jewelry.

Besides, I had a crush with a part of the store where we can find mixed rings that represent scrabble’s keys and even some representing keystrokes. No kidding, it must be my geek side who comes out… Even though the only game I know of is World of Warcraft and it is only because my classmate was always talking about that (and as I was bored in math I was listening to him).

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However, this is only when I went downstairs that I started building castles in the air, with the idea of moving to this place and live there for the rest of my life as the shop is awesome. You’re not even in the basement that the stairs already make you feel in the garage-sale atmosphere.

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Everyone can find his little paradise in this place. It goes from some wedding dress, roller skates and old comic strips to eccentric and rare dresses from the sixties, until the thick sweaters that your grandma has stopped to knit (to your greatest misfortune). Oh I was forgetting that for the most nostalgic of you know there is also a bowl full of yo-yos!

Moreover, in most of thrift stores of Dublin we have to deal with exorbitant prices (I’ve already seen some basic sweaters at 40 euros) but at Lucy’s Lounge everything is affordable and in very good conditions, it’s the good place to make great buisness. In addition, the owner of the shop is so lovely. We can see she truly loves vintage and wants to help you to find the piece which will suit you the best.

For those who are not fond of vintage, do not leave this page so fast! Indeed, there is also a part of the store dedicated to the new emerging designers.

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If you are still not convinced, I think you should go at least for the place in itself. All objects you can see are wonderful knick knacks which seem to have been all freshly hunted around the best flea market ever.

Sometimes I don’t know what is to sell and what is only adornment and this, it’s well worth a visit.

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All pictures are mine.

Lucy’s Lounge11 fownes street templebarDublinIE.


The Basquiat’s supreme featuring

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Everytime I see this picture it makes me dream, look how it perfectly represents the person who seemed to be Jean-Michel Basquiat. He was a street artist that started in New York in the late 1970’s and evolved between neo-expressionism and primitivism. He managed to mix poetry, drawing and painting. Indeed, there is a fusion between text and image in his works that is really particular.

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When Basquiat was alive, he was friend with some of the most notables artists as Andy Warhol, but his own art was not that famous. Yet, like a lot of artists we can notice a renewed-interest for his work since his death and this, in all areas ! Actually, we can find books about him, movies, documentaries and for the most coquettish ones… Fake nails with reproductions of his paintings ! Yay, Jean-Michel Basquiat is everywhere, even in the strangest collaborations and I’ve always been really happy with it because he completely deserves it. However, my gladness left as quickly as it came when I saw that :

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In 2010, it was the turn of Rebook. The famous brand of sneakers decided to make a tribute to Basquiat for a Winter limited collection and oh god, the reebok stuff was so distasteful. Really, to make some ugly sneakers for running, write Basquiat on it and saying it’s a tribute ? Please. I can’t see any tribute to any form of art in that. When I saw this featuring I thought Basquiat should never be next to Rebook or any other brand ever.

Of course, brands have been continuing to want Basquiat next to them. Fortunately the last one is a brand I appreciate a lot.

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Supreme is also a streetwear brand but surely more corresponding to the idea of the art of Basquiat, which is a good news because they confirmed they have now the rights to use the imagery of the artist for a new line… T-shirts, sweatshirts, button-downs and hats will be released in Spring/Summer 2013.

Stay tuned, we just have to wait few months and in 2013, we’ll (hopefully) hang out in style !


When kitsch becomes trendy

Now that Azealia Banks and Rihanna have appropriated this graphic universe, it’s time to clarify things : What is Seapunk ?

A little return to the roots is necessary to understand the phenomenon. Something easy because this artistic movement was born on the Internet, a place where you can find all the archives. On June 1, 2011, @LILINTERNET posted on Twitter:

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This simple message has spawned an hashtag and afterwards to an artistic movement : #seapunk. 

However, the real father of Seapunk is definitely Tumblr.

Three years ago, a large platform called Tumblr began to be flooded with psychedelic images and gifs with sea creatures (dolphins, shellfish …) but also many fluorescent objects, outmoded clothes, religious symbols, smileys, bleached colors, geometric shapes, oriental graphism and an aesthetic coming from the 90s. All wrapped in montages created with shoestring (Webcam, Paint and a basic use of Photoshop…)

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It stings your eyes, isn’t it ? Aesthetically, the movement is directly recognizable and seems to belong to a kind of new Soft Grunge.

Seapunk movement has no sense or any reason to defend. It’s rather a huge moodboard from 2.0 generation which spreads through fashion, graphics, and music.

For me it was only a “Tumblr” movement but I realized that the phenomenon had reached its peak on internet when it became a meme.
Indeed, many pop stars have recently blatantly used some seapunk graphics for their new productions. We have noticed Azealia Banks in her Atlantis clip who was wearing a crustaceans bra while waddling on a dolphin in front of a virtual ocean.

Then, it was Rihanna’s turn who sang her new song Diamonds in the middle of a seapunk decoration on Saturday Night Live.

The graphics used in the screens of Rihanna’s performance are clearly based on the work of the video artist Jerome from LOL Boys who belongs the seapunk movement.

The creator of LOL Boys and others founders of the movement have quickly expressed their dissatisfaction and their anger on the social networks because they know that from the moment a pop star like Rihanna is seen in this universe (which was unknown by the large public before), most of the people are going to think seapunk belongs to Rihanna, it will be popularized and will lose its original idea.

But like all phenomenas born on internet, this situation was expected and now that the seapunk movement is taking another form, all the people who once dreamed of a leather jacket with barnacles instead of the studs will soon have to find a new wardrobe…