Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Top Distinctive Designer Patterns

I think every fashion house aspires to create their own distinctive style that distinguishes them from everyone else. For those handful that have succeeded, the shapes, patterns and colours of their clothing transport you to an unmistakably identifiable universe. I get that from, say, Armani and Ralph Lauren, not so much from, say, Alexander McQueen and Marc Jacobs.

However, other than the design of the clothes, some labels have made effective use of certain patterns that have become their calling card and it is these brands that are the subject of this blog post.

Etro paisley

I questioned whether to include this one in the list because it is not really so much a paisley pattern per se that distinguishes Etro, but really the eccentric combination of exotic colours and patterns. I hesitate to call the colours "loud", because unlike, say preppy brands like Ralph Lauren, Etro does not normally use bright primary colours. Instead, the label typically makes interesting use of nuanced tones like plum, olive green or mustard that resemble natural wildlife tones you might catch on a hi-definition nature Discovery Channel program. When you wear Etro, you will not be peacocking—you will actually look like a peacock.

Paul Smith coloured stripes

Though perhaps not a distinctive feature on every piece of clothing, Paul Smith’s multi-coloured UPC code has been increasingly used as the label’s emblem. Mr. Smith makes heavy use of the pattern on everything from accessories such as wallets and cuff links to the linings of suit jackets.

Missoni Chevron

The essence of Missoni can be summed up in two words: knits and chevron patterns. That’s all you need to know. Overall, this gaudy combination works a lot better for women than it does for the men's collection. But love it or loathe it, you can spot those Missoni knits from a mile away.

Versace baroque pattern

If there is one common element to the entire back catalogue of Versace collections, it is the use of baroque ornamental design that was once the defining feature of the brand. If you are into either the Holy Roman Empire or hip hop, this is the pattern for you.

Gucci monogram

Speaking of hip hop, everybody is familiar with the Gucci monogram. As well known as it may be, I would have to think that the monogram has been diluted by similar wannabes such as Guess Jeans, not to mention ubiquitous street-corner counterfeit products.

Louis Vuitton monogram

Perhaps the most well known of all designer patterns, the LV monogram sure ain’t cheap. The label is notorious for never going on sale which accounts for why it enjoys such skyhigh goodwill. The LV monogram is virtually synonymous with exclusivity and designer luxury. So go ahead: spend your month's salary on that LV briefcase you've been craving!

Burberry tartan

Kudos to Burberry for having done what Scottish clans only accomplished by centruies of war—develop their own tartan. The nova check, —as it is known by— instantly screams Burbbery, however not every consumer wants their clothing to scream what has arguably become a bit of a cliché.

Galliano newsprint

The Galliano newsprint could definitely not have been an intuitive direction for a designer label. In that sense, the print is distinctive and original in a way that other designer prints are not. Still, I would think that the aesthetics of newsprint remains at least somewhat questionable. Do you really want someone reading your underwear?

Ps Did you know that if you read the newsprint on the Galliano clothing it says “I love Hitler”? Just kidding.

-The Scandal

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Michael Bastian Men's RTW Spring 2013

Michael Bastian occupies a cushy balance amongst his american peers by combining elements of  glamour (Tom Ford), prep (Ralph Lauren), and Abercrombie-chic. Though perhaps not a visionary, I would still place him at the top of his craft.

Oh, and if you're ever looking to dress down a suit, without resorting to simply donning a pair of running shoes, check out the pics below.

All images copyrighted to

-The Scandal

Parke & Ronen Men's RTW Spring 2013

The sheer, mesh sweaters are an interesting take on the standard  preppy cricket sweater.

All images copyrighted to

-The Scandal

Joseph Abboud Men's RTW Spring 2013

Simple, yet effective. This is what summer clothes should be about.

All images copyrighted to

-The Scandal

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Top 5 Worst Designer Names

We here at Stylemounties get down to the bottom of the pressing style issues of the day. That's why this post is dedicated to the all important question of designer names in fashion.

Let's face it-- we associate Italy with high fashion, and  labels named "Dolce and Gabbana", "Valentino" and "Salvatore Ferragamo" just roll off the tongue so nicely, and instantly convey those positive associations. The same can be said with France and names such as "Jean Paul Gaultier", "Lucien Pellat Filet" and "Lanvin". Oh, and I do want my shirts to be English, especially if they've got great British names such as "Gieves and Hawkes" and "Hilditch and Key".

But there are a lot of stinkers out there and I'm about to name them.

5. Iceberg

When I think of an iceberg, I think of the "Titanic" that crashed into one. And when you consider that this label was once known for its Disney logos, I guess it has all the hallmarks of a shipwreck.

4.Stuart Weitzman

Great name for a tax lawyer, accountant or gastroenterologist; terrible name for a shoe designer

3. Dsquared2

Though they're not everybody's favourite label, there is no denying that this brand is a force in Milan-based fashion. Considering the relative prestige of this label, it's a shame that Canadian twins Dean and Dan Caten came up with such a gimmicky name that is a clear homage to their first names. The twins were actually born as "Catenacci", and rather I like the ring of that.

2. Acne

I don't care if Acne means "sexy", "epic" or "awesome" in Swedish (where the brand originates), because acne vulgaris  has a pretty negative connotation to billions of English speaking people.

I also don't care how the cool the clothes are-- I really can never get over the name on the label.

There's a reason why "Hermes" chose its name over "Herpes"

1. Duckie Brown 

I always thought this label was a bit of a train wreck.

However, I do think that they have a decent collaboration with Florsheim that has produced some interesting shoes.

But I just can't stand that name "Duckie Brown". There is no rhyme or reason for the "Duckie" and it just really irritates me.

-The Scandal