Sunday, 23 December 2012

Sunday Wishlist #5

Sunday Wishlist #5

1. American Apparel - In general, I love AA. They make great basic items, and you can get most things in loads of different colours. In particular, I would love one of their pleated skirts, a 3D flower top, and a long petticoat. All three are great basics to have.

2. Burger & Friends Sweater - I adore Tina Turner, she's such a babe. So this sweater is great. I just know when I'm wearing it, I'll be walking around singing the song in my best Tina voice! I'm not a fan of the plain white, so I would dip dye the sleeves in black dye so that it fades from black to grey to white up the sleeve.

3. ASOS skinny leather trousers - As you may have noticed, I have been on the lookout for the perfect pair of leather trousers. This pair might just fit the bill...

4. ASOS Skater dress - This is such a great basic dress that can be dressed up or down. I like that it has 3/4 length sleeves too.

5. Denham V Neck Marl T-shirt - It's incredibly difficult to find a great basic t-shirt that is made from high quality fabric and has an excellent cut. H&M and Topshop do loads of different basic tops, but they are never quite right. This t-shirt is £45, but I have a feeling that it will look great on, and last much longer than a highstreet t-shirt.

6. Comme des Garcons sweater - This really is a dream item. I adore everything by Comme des Garcons. Hopefully one day I will be able to afford a few of their pieces.

7. Miista Kia pink - Aren't these just incredible?! I think they are great no matter what the season, and they will spice up any outfit.

Bemsy x

Saturday, 22 December 2012

Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery? Proenza Schouler & Three Floor

Proenza Schouler's embroidered bird sweaters and jackets have been incredibly popular this season, fitting nicely into the oriental trend. I was, however, disappointed to find that the supposedly fashion-forward brand Three Floor had taken a little too much of PS's design and put it on their own jacket. So, out of the following four, three are PS and one is Three Floor, but which one?! (The answer is at the bottom of the post)

If you ask me, all four items look like they are from a PS collection. In fashion, it is inspiration, not imitation, that is the sincerest form of flattery. Copying the aesthetic of another person's design so closely is creatively lazy, and I would encourage everyone, where possible, to avoid buying such items and instead shop at brands that are more creatively innovative.

Bemsy x

The answer is...number three! Did you guess right?

Tuesday, 18 December 2012

Doll Boutique rips off Givenchy

One of my favourite bloggers, Jessica Stein from Tuula, sporting a Givenchy Rottweiler Tee

By now, most people will have come across the Givenchy Rottweiler. Ricardo Tisci's Rottweiler first made an appearance in Givenchy's Menswear F/W '11 collection, before making its way into the Womenswear Pre-Fall 2012 RTW collection, this time in the form of a photo taken by Ralph. A. Clevenger. Bloggers the world over have been seen sporting a Rottweiler top, not to mention celebrities, from Liv Tyler to Kanye West. Tisci's idea has successfully bridged the gap between hip-hop and hollywood.

It will come as no surprise that the Rottweiler has been copied to death. A design this popular, and this easy to copy, is a dream for knock-off maestros. However, I was very surprised to find that a British brand, Doll Boutique, who recently premiered their own label on their website, decided to produce their own copy.
Givenchy Menswear Fall 2011

Givenchy Womenswear Pre-Fall 2012 RTW

Doll Boutique Bad Dog Jewel Sweatshirt

I hardly need to point out that Doll Boutique's offering is identical to Givenchy's Pre-Fall design in every way except for the fact that they have used a sweatshirt instead of a t-shirt. What perplexes me is that Doll Boutique had not updated their website for what seemed like several months while they were preparing their new collection. Surely the point of a new collection is to exercise your creative freedom to design whatever you want? Instead, their debut collection does not bode well for the future if all they can manage is a copy of a much-loved Givenchy design. 

There are legal questions at issue here which potentially interlink. First, the obvious knock off of the Givenchy design. While a design itself cannot be protected by law, Givenchy has edited Clevenger's photo, and therefore Givenchy may have copyright protection. Secondly, does Doll Boutique have Clevenger's permission to use his photo on their sweater? 

A friend pointed out that girls not interested in high fashion would not know that this sweater is a Givenchy knock off. However, Doll Boutique has long been known as one of only two retailers of Jeffrey Campbell shoes, and it could therefore be argued that their target market is in fact the fashion-savvy. This adds weight to the argument that they sell this sweater because they know that their customers will recognise it as Givenchy, rather than selling it because they think it's a cool design. 

I emailed both Givenchy and Clevenger last week, and although I have not received a response from either, I am not bothered, as Doll Boutique's sweater has now been listed as 'SOLD OUT'. Interesting, considering the rest of their new collection is still available...

I'm going to go ahead and call this a victory for Redhead Talkin'!

Bemsy x

Sunday, 16 December 2012

Sunday Wishlist #4

Sunday Wishlist #4

1. Zara Pin Stud Hat - I bought a hat just like this from Zara with a gold chain around it, but I'm a sucker for studs so naturally I've fallen in love with this hat.

2. ASOS Sunglasses - So technically, these sunglasses are no longer on my wishlist as I bought them last weekend when ASOS had a 20% discount. And yes, they are perfect!

3. ASOS black collar and cream collar - I think these collars are great. They are perfect for jazzing up a t-shirt and jeans outfit, or for adding some bling to a simple dress.

4. Ted Baker dresses - Aren't they just adorable?

5. Zatchels x Hello Kitty - Perfection in the form of a bag!

6. H&M bra and knickers - I have fallen in love with this bra. It is just so sparkly and pretty! I'm going to have to try it on in a store though, because the biggest size online is a 34C which is most upsetting! They also have the bra in black and pink in bigger sizes, but they don't have the fun sparkly bits on them. Fingers crossed I can get in to a 34C!

Bemsy x

Friday, 14 December 2012

Topshop's Lanvin lookalikes

Remember this post where I asked if you knew your Lanvin from your H&M? Well it seems that Lanvin's design is proving popular amongst fast-fashion retailers. This time it's Topshop who have taken a liking to the Lanvin beauties...

Lanvin polished leather boots

Topshop Palette Premium Met Boots

I think the Topshop boots are a little too similar to the Lanvin design, in fact, the only part they have not copied is the strap around the top of the boot. While most of the items at Topshop aren't exactly creatively innovative, it seems that their designers have been particularly lazy with this one.

Copying another brand's design is creatively lazy. Do you think fashion would be more exciting if, for example, Topshop just sold Topshop Unique?

Bemsy x

Monday, 10 December 2012

Girl Crush #3 - Charlize Theron

Perhaps Charlize is an unexpected girl crush, but I recently discovered that when she isn't being dressed for the red carpet, she is an expert at dressing down in style.

Charlize proves that it is absolutely possible to look chic after a long-haul flight. I'm sure she has a pair of ballet pumps and a cosy sweater in her bag that she wore during the flight, but she stepped off the plane in style. It just goes to show, we can do it too!

The key is in the detail - biker style black jeans add interest, and studded pumps are so much more fun than plain black.

The perfect example of how to dress up a plaid shirt and jeans.

Charlize combines soft tones perfectly.

Denim on denim is not an easy trend to get right. Charlize shows us how it's done with dark blue jeans and a paler blue casual shirt. 

Such a great, casual outfit that has been jazzed up with a statement bag.

Girl Crush #3 - Charlize Theron

Charlize is the queen of casual chic. To get Charlize's style, invest in the perfect pair of leather trousers and a pair of heels that will take you from lunch to cocktails. Don't be afraid to dress up a casual outfit with a statement bag or with cute heels. Sometimes, it's better to keep things simple.

Do you like Charlize's style?

Bemsy x

Monday, 3 December 2012

Sunday Wishlist #3

Sunday Wishlist 3

1. Russell & Bromley Loafers - Russell & Bromley's online shop launched recently, and I could not be happier. I own a few pairs of R&B shoes and boots already, and they are just incredible. They may be expensive, but they must be seen as an investment - they will literally last for years and years and look like new! The colour of these loafers is incredible, and they are perfect for winter as they aren't skimpy.

2. Pull & Bear Faux Fur Waistcoat  - I've only recently realised that I need a waistcoat like this. I think it will be perfect for jeans and a blouse, or with a long-sleeved dress.

3. Zara Pencil Skirt - Pencil skirts are so handy, and I think this one can be dressed up or down.

4. Boohoo Torn Tights - I love torn tights when I'm in a grungey mood, except when I rip my own tights, I always end up with a massive hole. I'm intrigued as to how long these tights will last before the holes merge in to one giant one!

5. Topshop Prickle Boots  - It was love at first sight. Could they be any more perfect?!

6. H&M Faux Leather Trousers - I would love a pair of leather trousers, but I feel it's necessary to try out a faux leather pair before splurging on a real pair.

7. Topshop Nails in Dark Knight  - I love the dark blue, and I love the glitter.

Bemsy x

Sunday, 25 November 2012

The mysterious case of the disappearing sweaters - Criminal Damage Update

Criminal Damage Men's No.91 Sweater detail

Remember this post where I wrote about Criminal Damage's (CD) use of Chanel's trademark?

Well, the sweaters and t-shirts have completely disappeared from the Criminal Damage online shop. How very mysterious...

I tweeted CD asking if they were re-stocking, but obviously they didn't reply because I was the one pestering them for a comment on their illegal use of Chanel's trademark. Perhaps Chanel contacted them after I alerted them to the infringement, or perhaps CD just thought better of their 'original design'. Who knows. What I do know is that I'm glad that the tops have gone!

Bemsy x

Saturday, 24 November 2012

ASOS gets inspired

While ASOS is not innocent when it comes to copying high-end designers, their designers are rather good at coming up with items inspired by the catwalks that don't tread on the toes of the original designs.

First up, Prada. The A/W '12 show was iconic, from the clothes to the shoes, and the hair and make-up to the design of the runway.

Prada A/W '12 Two-tone pumps

ASOS Prize two-tone pumps

The second brand inspiring ASOS' anonymous designers is Marni. With a 1960s vibe running through the collection, the shoes added the perfect finishing touch.

Photo: Olivier Claisse/firstVIEW - Marni A/W '12 RTW

Marni A/W '12 RTW pumps

ASOS Purpose criss-cross pumps

So, if you are looking for a pair of heels that has a hint of Italian catwalk glamour, I am pleased to recommend these two designs by ASOS. Just remember - there's a difference between inspired and knock-off, and inspired is the way to go!

Bemsy x

Thursday, 22 November 2012

Bargain hunters beware!

Screenshot example of a site selling fake Gucci bags

The internet has made shopping for a bargain so much easier. But a recent survey carried out by MarkMonitor suggests that as many as 1 in 5 consumers in Europe and the US are duped into buying fake goods, believing them to be discounted genuine goods. As a result, luxury labels are suffering, and consumers who thought it was their lucky day end up disappointed.

Search engines like Google are getting better and better at blocking fraudulent websites, or at least not listing them on the first page of search results, but they are still out there and they are still conning consumers. 

There are many ways around being conned out of your money though.

1. Shop the sales at reputable websites

2. Learn to love The Outnet and other similar sites linked to reputable online shops

2. Buy second-hand from Ebay or Preloved

3. Join an online shopping club

But most important of all - be a savvy shopper. If you're even a little bit unsure of the legitimacy of a site, then don't give them your money. 

Have you been bamboozled into buying a fake handbag or item of clothing?

Bemsy x

Sunday, 18 November 2012

Sunday Wishlist #2

Sunday Wishlist 2

1. Boohoo Skull Print Midi Dress - Another midi dress this week, but I just adore the print!

2. Stefanel Trousers - Chiara at The Blonde Salad was wearing the most incredible pair of Stefanel trousers in one of her recent posts, and now I can't wait to own a pair.

3. ASOS Textured Coat - This coat looks so impossibly cosy, and can easily be dressed up or down, parfait non?

4. Jeffrey Campbell Iverson - My latest lust-have pair of JCs.

5. Topshop Avant Boots - I probably shouldn't like these booties because they are verging on being hideous, but I just do. So, if I ever own them, I will rock them!

6. Dents Gloves - Definitely need these 2 pairs of gloves in my life...

7. Motel Star Wet Look Skinny Pants - The colour is called Emerald Crush, therefore I need these!

8. ASOS Shirt Dress - Nothing better than a ridiculously thin dress in the middle of winter.

What's on your wishlist this week?

Bemsy x

Wednesday, 14 November 2012

Buy British: Dents

This is the first in a series of recommended British manufacturers and retailers. Enjoy!

There are so many good reasons to shop locally for your clothing and accessories. Shopping locally helps to support local businesses and skilled craftspeople and keeps them in business. It gives you the peace of mind that the items you're wearing are produced by people who are paid a proper wage and who work in a safe and pleasant environment, made from high quality materials.

The first company I recommend is Dents. Since 1777, Dents have been handcrafting leather gloves in Warminster. Their gloves start at a very affordable £14, and many are lined in silk or cashmere. They are also available in every colour you can imagine!

Considering H&M, Zara and River Island are selling leather gloves at a similar price point as Dents, you really won't be saving money by shopping at a fast-fashion retailer. So, support a British manufacturer instead of giving your money to companies who have their products made in sweatshops abroad.

Will you be buying British-made gloves this winter? Or if you don't live in the UK, which local brand will you be supporting?

Bemsy x

Time to relax

Peppermint and nettle tea + Fashion Law book + fur blanket = bliss. 

Bemsy x

Sunday, 11 November 2012

Sunday Wishlist #1

Sunday Wishlist 1

1. ASOS studded leather gloves
Ever since I saw the Burberry A/W '12 show, I have been lusting after studded leather gloves.

2.  ASOS stud and skull skinny belt
This is too cute, and will go perfectly with high-waisted tartan shorts and skirts.

3. Kukee studded bracelet
Kukee make the most adorable jewellery, and I can't resist studs so I definitely need this baby!

4. Topshop Cutout bikini
I know, I know, it's November. But I do think that when you see a good bikini, no matter what time of year, you must buy it in preparation for summer.

5. Missguided midi dress
This length is so flattering, and seems to make my legs look a little longer. I need this dress in every colour!

6. Topshop peplum top
Perfect for the party season with a bodycon skirt!

7. Topshop lace skirt
Finally, a high-low skirt that sits below the knees at the front! Sometimes I hate my knees, so this gorgeous skirt is perfect for me.

8. Topshop Premium kilt
Not my usual style, but I have fallen in love.

9. ASOS Hollywood heels
It's really difficult to find a pair of simple black sandals that don't have enormous heels, so this pair are perfect and I just know I'll wear them season in, season out until they fall apart.

10. Abataba Peter Pan glitter collar
Abataba make this necklace in lots of different colours. They are perfect for jazzing up a cute knit or plain t-shirt.

Much love, Bemsy x

Tuesday, 6 November 2012

Do you know your Lanvin from your H&M?

H&M imitation suede ankle boots

Lanvin neoprene & leather trimmed ankle boots

H&M seems to have been inspired by Lanvin for their new Grey Concept collection. 

Would you have known if I hadn't told you? Would you have known the difference?

Bemsy x

Thursday, 1 November 2012

Romwe infringes Boy London's registered trademark

Yesterday, I blogged about Romwe's knockoff of Kenzo's tiger sweater. Today I was having another browse and came across what I thought was a Boy London sweater, and Boy London leggings. Why did I think this? Because Boy London sell the exact sweater in black and white, and the exact same leggings. In fact, the only difference between the Romwe sweater and the original Boy version, is the colour of the sweater.

Boy London Eagle Sweat - £55

Romwe Eagle Letter Print Grey Pullover - £27

Boy London Leggings - £40

Romwe Eagle Letter Print Black Leggings - £14

And guess what, Romwe's copy of the sweater has sold out. It would be interesting to know if those who purchased it thought it was a genuine, or knew it was a fake and wanted to save £28 (such a massive saving...)

The trouble for Romwe is, Boy London has registered their trademark, at least in the UK. So, not only have they infringed on Boy's trade mark, but I also believe these items are counterfeit goods. Its aim is to mislead consumers and make them believe that the item is genuine. Therefore, any items that arrive at UK customs will hopefully be confiscated.

Would you buy a counterfeit good to save just £28?

Bemsy x

Wednesday, 31 October 2012

Romwe sails too close to the wind

Another day, another knockoff from Romwe. I really was disappointed when I came across this sweater. The Kenzo sweater has been incredibly popular with fashion bloggers, with the likes of Chiara from The Blonde Salad being snapped wearing one. Retailing at $255 though, it's not something that many people can afford. I think this is what has spurred Romwe to make such a blatant copy - they know they can make money out of Kenzo's design. 

What's your opinion on this knockoff?

Bemsy x

Saturday, 27 October 2012

Criminal Damage live up to their name

Criminal Damage Mens Leopard Print Number 91 Sweater

Last week I wandered in to my local Ark shop in Sheffield. The first thing I saw was this sweater - eye-catching, right? And for all the wrong reasons in my opinion. 

Most of you will be familiar with the Chanel logo and the iconic interlocking C's which stand for Coco Chanel.

Criminal Damages' use of the interlocking C's may not only infringe Chanel's registered trade mark, but the products may also amount to trade mark counterfeiting. 

I have contacted Criminal Damage but have received no response, and the sweater, as well as t-shirts with the same print, are still available to buy on their website. Their website states that Criminal Damage's designers work 'under minimal constraint' and are therefore able to 'have fun and do their own thing', which makes me wonder how they justify trading on the goodwill and reputation that Chanel has established in its trade mark, instead of coming up with their own unique designs. 

What do you think? Should Criminal Damage get away with selling these clothes?

Bemsy x

Tuesday, 23 October 2012

Missguided's familiar looking platform heels

MissGuided Fable Studded Platform Heels

Christian Louboutin for Rodarte Spike Pumps

I was having a little browse on when I came across the Fable shoes. Louboutin's pumps for Rodarte immediately sprang to mind, which were on sale in Fall '08 but were extremely hard to come by. They were only available at selected Louboutin boutiques and were never available online. Of course, knockoffs were produced at the time, but it is interesting to see that MissGuided has chosen to produce their knockoff 4 years later.

Obviously, the MissGuided pair don't even begin to compare to the originals by Louboutin, but many would argue that because they are infinitely more affordable the inferior quality is bearable. My argument, though, is that Louboutin designed these incredible shoes which most of us will never be able to get our hands on, and that companies like MissGuided should be taking inspiration from such a design, not trying to copy it outright. I would rather own a pair of incredible shoes that I can afford, that don't resemble any other designer's shoes and are therefore unique. 

What do you think?

Bemsy x