9.05.2014

Hommes Fashion 3: Nicola in Berlin

Nicola has something stilish about him so as first fashion I decided to sew him a Mod's outfit


I liked this one very much, I'm not very good at jackets, but I keep trying!!!!
I used red cotton for the trousers, wool jersey for the turtleneck sweater and gabardine for the jacket, this time I nearly got the sleeves right, but I still have to work on my jacket pattern!!!! Shoes are by IT.

Anyway, Nicola is very happy with it, and he's going to show you some highliths of Berlin, which happens to be one of Sasha's favourite towns. I've never been there yet, so you'll have to trust Sasha and this camera.

Berlin Wall - Murales - Picture by Sasha
Berlin Wall - Murales - Picture by Sasha
These places are the reminders of a very sad period, but Berliners seem to have made the most of them: tourist attractions!

Check Point - Picture by Sasha
one of the amazing things about Berlin are the wonderful modern architectures, these  are a couple of buildings by Renzo Piano in Postdamer Platz.

Berlin - Postdamer Platz - Renzo Piano building - Picture by Sasha
Berlin - Postdamer Platz - Renzo Piano building - Picture by Sasha
Of course he couldn't miss to pose in front of the Brandeburg gate! But, wait a minute, who's that gorgeous girl over there? It looks like Iolanda has already followed Nicola here!!!

Berlin - Brandeburg Gate - Picture by Sasha
This as view of Berlin from the Reichstag terrace: it's amazing!!!

Berlin - view from the Reichstag terrace - Picture by Sasha
Berlin - The Reichstag - Picture by Sasha

Berlin, as many European Capitals, is rich of museums, this is the museum island, it is also a lovely place to take a straw....So Nicola decided to take Nasty for a walk, and Iolanda is there again!!!

Berlin - Altes Museum - Picture by Sasha
Berlin - Museums Island - Picture by Sasha
Well, for those of you who are wondering how Nicola is going to spend the afternoon......even thought I'm sure he set his eyes on Edda, but I told you, Nicola is our ladiesman!!!

Koepenic Restaurant - Stock Picture


This issue's soundtrack, on of my faves by Jamiroquai: Virtual Insanity!!!


8.22.2014

Kenzo for Mafalda

I was looking for some "new" ideas and Kenzo came to my mind, so I've checked the collections from the last couple of years, andI found this great jumpsuit from Kenzo's 2013 spring collection (in fact I found several ideas that I'm going to pick from that collection).


I thought it was perfect for Agnese, who has been waiting for her magic moment for a long time now, but after sewing the dress (Odette is usually my mannequin) I tried to put it on Agnese and I made a very unpleasant surprise: no handspeak system on her!!! I checked on the web and found out this system was not yet in use when IT released London By Night Ayumi. I like her the same but it was a huge disappointment. So I tried the jump suit of the FR2 girls, and it fitted, then on Margherita (FR Tall body) and it looked ok.
But I was not pleased with how it looked with her huge bust, so I finally settled for Mafalda.
So she was off to the Riviera for this photosession. I picked Nice this time, and let me tell you, the colours of the Mediterraneum are really a threat!


Speaking of the Promenade des Anglais, pictured above, can you believe it inspired this picture to Edvard Munch?!?!?! Yes, Edvard Munch AKA "Mr The Scream" (actually he painted the scream two years after this on)! I saw this at an impressionist exposition a couple of years ago and I was flabbergasted:


Well, believe me, this is what the Riviera can do to you too!!

But, let's get back to Mafalda.


I'm very much into Urban Safari or Jungle themes lately, so you can be assured that more of these are to come! I used a Liberty Cotton fabric with a floral pattern, not very jungle but it's fitting enough, shoes are by Paul Zangby. I also made a matching shoulder purse.


The colours of Nice's old town are a perfect backdrop to present this fashion.



It's started raining, so Mafalda has got to go and take cover.....

See you soon!
Billa


8.08.2014

Nicola: Mad About the boy 3

Nicola is an adverturous guy, he's a journalist and a writer and he likes to live in style. So I choose for him one of the most stylish of the European capitals: Berlin.
And he's going to stay in a delux room in the Hotel Hadlon Kempinski, it seems all this gold suits him fine!
About this doll: Lady Thriller Pierre De Vries. As usual in oder to reduce the expenses I bought this doll nude. I think it is the only Pierre Doll which doesn't suffer from hands and feet discolouring, one more reason to be very happy with him. This is an older Homme model, so he doesn't have removable hands, but it is a minor fault, as this guy is perfection!



I love his adult looks, and he looks like a guy who can see the funny side of life.


It took me a while to learn how to photograph him, but now I'm very pleased with the results.


He  is Too Darn Hot!


Of course I could not omit the hommage to Sasha's football club....


Ella Fitzgerald: Too Darn Hot!

See you soon


Billa

8.07.2014

I'm back..more or less

Hello everybody!

I hope you're all doing great!

Of course I've been back from Uzbekistan for a while, and let me tell you it's a wonderful place, but as soon as I got home I was caught in a very tough spot at work.
Everything went fine, anyway, and I also managed to take another wonderful trip to Russia.
Then work took all my time and attantion, and now I will rest for a little while and will devote myself to my favourite sport: sunbathing.
Summer is not the right time to sew, but I have some posts ready so I'm planning a quarterly release, and hope to start again  in full swing when long winter evenings shall be dedicated to new fashions.

Lots of kisses
Billa

THE DUDE ABIDES


5.09.2014

Off to Uzbekistan!!!

Tomorrow Sasha and I shall be leaving for a  tour of Uzbekistan! We will visit Tashkent, Samarkand, Bukhara, Khiva, Urghenk, Shakhrisabz. Here's our itinerary:


So, finally, the boys and girls shall stay home and we will go around the world! LOL



See you all in fifteen days!!!

5.06.2014

Travelling Dolly 7: Odette in China part 3 - The east: Shanghai, Suzhou and Hangzhou



Well in my imagination Shanghai was like this, perhaps I've seen too many old movies or too many new ones set in the 30's, anyway the modern Shanghai is everything but a disappointment!
But before that a few words about Odette's outfit: it is a reproduction of a fashion from Kenzo's 2013 Spring-Summer collection. Her shoes and bag  are by TheVogue HK.


I picked several ideas from this collection, more Urban Safari to come!!! Carlo is wearing an IT t-shirt and a beautiful pair of jeans by HazelStreetDezigns on Etsy, I bought this and a couple of corduroy trousers before I tried my hand on male fahions. She sews beautiful clothes!
Thanks to his new hands Carlo can now hold his camera, as I wrote on his profile in the Mad about the boy page, he is a photographer. I found this lovely Canon Eos reproduction on E-bay. It is extremely detailed, in perfect scale and it came with several lenses and removable caps!!!! Of course this lovely object comes from China!!! LOL
Enough for the trivia. With their new clothes and accessories Odette and Carlo are ready to enjoy the last part of their trip to China.

Shanghai is a fascinating metropoli with its skyscrapers, the Bund with all its history and glamour, the elegant Nanking Road, the restored Old Town and in the midst the remnants of old and shabby houses (I couldn't take pictures of those). This is an exciting place, and Odette and Carlo didn't miss a thing!
But this is a place with at least two souls: and  the Huangpu River flowing between the Bund and the Pudong Disctrict works as a very effective rappresentation of this. In fact the whole Shanghai has been undergoing a huge restiling since the 1990's, when the new urban planning was developed. A whole museum is devoted to this urban plan, and is very impressive!
Another museum not to be missed is the Shanghai Museum of Art and History, an amazing collection!

Shanghai Pudong skyline view from the Bund - Picture by Billa

Shanghai - The Bund - Picture by Sasha
Nanking road is the most elegant place in town, and Odette and Carlo went for some shopping, but came back empty handed....everything was soooo expensive!!!

Shanghai - Nanking Street - Picture by Billa
This is a view from the old town, this place is amazing, filled with little shops. In fact it is a big shopping center where you can find everything: green tea, dresses, wooden or jade artifacts, this the souverin's paradise! But the thing that impressed Odette is the feeling of modern Shanghai looming just outside the doors!

Shanghai - The old town - Picture by Billa
The last part of Odette's visit to China will be under the insigna of the Chinese Gardens, and in Shanghai she visits the first of them. Actually she already visited one in Beijing, but the Imperial Summer Garden is just too huge to understand the meaning of this kind of gardens in the ancient Chinese culture.

Shanghai - Yuyuan Garden - Picture by Billa
Gardens were intended as places to meditate, relax, listen or play music and of course they had to be build accordingly to the rules of feng shui. Chinese gardens are really different from European gardens, they look natural and they are a sort of miniature representation of a perfect world: with their small apartments, pavillons, mountains, rocks, lakes and rivers filled with lotus flowers and colouful fishes!

On their next stop Odette and Carlo are visiting the Huangang Park in Hangzhou on the West Lake (one of Unesco's World Heritage Sites) and everything looks as it is ready for a photographic session. Carlo is so thrilled. Now, this is a place to try his new camera!

Hangzhou - Huangang Park - Picture by Billa
Hangzhou - Huangang Park - Picture by Billa
Hangzhou has got its old town with shops and stands, and a picturesque network of channels. This town is renowed to be, along with Suzhou, one of the most beautiful cities in China.

Hangzhou - Old Town - Picture by Sasha
Odette and Carlo also visited an ancient pharmacy, where one could buy any kind of ingredients for the Traditional Chinese Medicine.

Hangzhou - Old Town - Picture by Sasha
Just outside Hangzhou is the Lingyin Temple, wich means the soul retreat temple. At the entrance of the Temple are the Feilai Feng grottoes, where several Buddhas are carved. This smiling and happy Buddha is absolutely amazing. Nowadays the Temple is filled with Chinese pilgrims (very young ones) as it looks like the younger generations are redescovering religion (while Buddhist Monks are discovering the I-Pad LOL)
Odette and Carlo were very lucky to take this picture alone, as the place was buzzing with hundreds of people! As you can see they're trying to "pull an Avedon" (that's the reason why the Buddha is laughing so hard)

Hagzhou - Lyngin temple - Picture by Billa
Shuzhou is really one of the loveliest places on hearth. And here Odette and Carlo are going to visit what is the apotheosis of the Chinese garden, but first they are going to visit a very intriguing place: the Tiger Hill. To reach the pagoda at the top Odette has decided to try yet another mean of transportation, while Carlo prefers to jog a little to keep fit (Chinese food is very tempting).

Suzhou - Tiger Hill - Picture by Sasha
The Yunyan Pagoda's lean is just 3 degrees, but it looks like it's quite a lean!!!
Odette believes she's in Pisa and tries to straighten it up!

Suzhou - Tiger Hill Pagoda - Picture by Billa
At the foot of the Hill, is the Wanjing Villa with its huge collection of  Penjing (literally "tray scenery"), also known as penzai, which are  potted landscapes. This  is the ancient Chinese art of depicting artistically formed trees, other plants, and landscapes in miniature from which the  Japanese Bonsai originated.

Suzhou -Penjing garden - Picture by Sasha
Odette and Carlo having some fun with this scenographic door: The Vitruvian Dollz

Suzhou - Penjing garden - Picture by Sasha
And finally they visited the Humble Administrator Garden. I think these pictures give a rough idea of what I was talking about speaking of a perfect miniature world:


Suzhou - Humble Administrator Garden - Picture by Sasha
This is a female room in one of the Pavillons, Odette can't really figure out how to play this instrument, I believe it is called a Guzheng.

Suzhou - Humble Administrator Garden - Picture by Sasha
Suzhou - Humble Administrator Garden - Picture by Sasha
There's a wonderful book, one of the great classics of Chinese literature, which takes place almost exclusively in a garden like this. It is called  The Dream of the Red Chamber, I would highly reccommend it, is a great reading!

Suzhou - Humble Administrator Garden - Picture by Sasha
Before leaving China, Odette and Carlo can't miss a visit to Tongli, the Venice of the East. The town is built on seven islands and is crossed by 15 canals. Wooden tour boats ease down the waterways, duck under bridges, and glide past residences, stores, gardens and restaurants. Most canals are no more than 30 feet across affording intimate views of the passing scene.

Tongli - Picture by Billa
This is extremely romantic, and by now it is clear: Odette and Carlo are an item!


Tongli - Picture by Billa
of course they pay a visit to the local souvenir's market.....last minute shopping

Tongli - Picture by Billa
As she really loved everything about China,  Odette  wants to leave you with this beautiful traditional song played on the Guzheng: High Mountain and Flowing Water, listen and just imagine slowly boating down the Li River.....



Previous instalment: Odette in China part 2
Their next destination: Oman!!!