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Jackie o

  • Duopioni vs. Shantung

    Silk. We know that silk has long been regarded as one of the most luxurious of fabrics. It was once exclusive to aristocrats, First Ladies and royalty, being that it was and still is expensive and ever so tedious to produce. There are many different types of fabrics derived from silk fibers such as Georgette, Chiffon, and Organza to name a few. But lets start with a little background on the fiber itself.

    Princess Diana in a blue silk gown by Versace himself, 1996. Princess Diana in a blue silk gown by Versace himself, 1996.
    First Lady Jackie Kennedy in a silk zibe(r)line dress by Oleg Cassini.  Photo: Art Rickerby/Time Life Pictures/Getty Images First Lady Jackie Kennedy in a silk zibe(r)line dress by Oleg Cassini.
    Photo: Art Rickerby/Time Life Pictures/Getty Images
    Bombyx mori Moth a.k.a.the domesticated silk moth. Compliments of xsilk.com Bombyx mori Moth a.k.a.the domesticated silk moth.
    Compliments of xsilk.com
    Sericulture refers to the raising of silkworms for the production of reeled silk. Silkworms are the caterpillars of the Bombyx mori moth. These caterpillars must be fed a proper diet of the white leave mulberry to ensure the filament can be unwound from the cocoon in a single unbroken strand. To ensure that the pupa inside does not emerge as a moth and mar the filament, they are stifled with steam or heat. In many cultures, the silk worms are then prepared in different ways as a local delicacy.

    After harvesting the silk cocoons, they are brushed and cleaned in preparation to be unwound and spun into yarns, which would later be woven into fabric. Silk doupionini and silk shantung are widely recognized as the golden standard of silk, but are often misinterpreted.

    Silkworm cocoons. Compliments of www.artofsilk.com Silkworm cocoons.
    Compliments of www.artofsilk.com
    Marc Jacobs Pale Gold Silk Midweight Dupioni Marc Jacobs Pale Gold Silk Midweight Dupioni via Mood
    Doupionini (Dupioni) is Italian silk of a fine caliber finished with a substantial hand. Originally, Doupionini was named for having been produced from double cocoons that are nested together. The double cocoons account for the uneven and irregular slubbing. When silk was once produced from wild cocoons alone, this would have been the most expensive due to the fact that this double nesting is a rare naturally occurring coincidence. Today this fabric type can be produced from man-made fibers such as polyester or acetate.

    Shantung silk is Chinese and originates from the Shandong province of China. The slubs are less textural in shantung, however it does have visible striations. Overall shantung is slightly thinner and less irregular than doupionini. Shantung is considered the midpoint between a drapable silk charmeuse and a stiff doupionini. Each fabric has a rough surface although neither is unpleasant.

    Pale Aqua Solid Silk Shantung via Mood Fabrics. Pale Aqua Solid Silk Shantung via Mood Fabric
    Duopioni featured in Pale Gold;Shantung featured in Pale Blue Dupioni featured in Pale Gold
    Shantung featured in Pale Blue

    An unfamiliar hand may not spot the difference between the two right away, however a quick trip to Mood Fabrics will have you putting your knowledge to the test. After collecting some swatches you can conduct a side-by-side comparison until you are dreaming of silk amid your sheets. Although each material is alluring in their own way, doupionini and shantung possess different properties that result in different intended uses. Doupionini creates a similar sound to taffeta and will not work for applications that require a textile with superior drape. At times silk shantung can almost appear to cascade and it has an easier drape than doupionini. Each can be fashioned into exquisite ensembles for any special occasion, however you must consider which lends itself better to your intended project.

  • Fall Inspired Fashion

    Fashion has never been this magnetic or omnipresent as it is this fall. The old is new again and television shows are influencing fashion’s biggest designers this season. With all of this amazing clothing creeping up on us all, it’s hard to imagine a time when color was non-existent and some looks did not look wearable. This fall, fashion lovers all over the world should anticipate every day wear that is beautiful, bright, retro and comfortable. Fall seems to be the greatest season to be involved in fashion.
    Mad Men

    Mad Men

    The MOD look is back in style. The clothes and the style of the 60’s has once again graced the runways and entered into the department stores. Mad Men, a popular television show is the big influence behind the MOD style this season. Tailored suits and dresses, opaque stockings and more attention to detail are being seen on the streets and in the collections of designers such as, Victoria Beckham, Bottega Venta and Marni. In addition to the beautiful dresses and suits that can be worn inside and outside of the office, bell bottoms and bug-eyed sunglasses are also making a comeback. The sunglasses that Jackie O made famous are all the rage for the Fall 2011 season. The bell bottom style has been seen on the runways and on the streets. This trend has been seen worn with a statement heel and a pretty tunic. Designers are putting a modern update to these classic styles.
    Jackie O Sunglasses

    Jackie O Sunglasses

    Colors and every day wear has been a prominent sight on many runways. Designers are realizing that clothing that can be worn straight from the runway is the most important thing to fashion lovers. Many runways, such as Jason Wu showcased simple yet glamorous sweaters, skinny-legged pants and statement clutches. The emergence of more color has pleased many people as well. Colors from every spectrum of the rainbow have been seen in a variety of fall styles. Yellow has been the prominent color of the season, being seen in the collections of many popular designers.

    Jason Wu Fall 2011 Collection

    The fall season can say hello to the reemergence of the Victorian era. Long, flowing A-line dresses are making a comeback this season, as well as high-heeled laced up booties. In addition to the stylish Victorian clothing, cameo necklaces which were very popular in the past have been seen on many models. Sarah Burton for Alexander McQueen has combined pleated collars and flowing gowns together, to create a modern version of this old style. Fashion this season is proving to be very stylish and very exciting.
    Sarah Burton for Alexander McQueen

    Sarah Burton for Alexander McQueen

    Megan Gates is an active blogger who provides written work to the blogosphere pertaining to New York City Real Estate, Hamptons Beach Rentals, home improvement and the latest architecture, design and fashion. Follow her on twitter @MEGatesDesign.
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