Monday, February 01, 2010

Independent Spirit: Bonnie Morrison

Bonnie Morrison by Alexandra Phanor-Faury Here at Essence.com, we’re always on the lookout for exceptionally dressed ladies with great individualistic style to fawn over and fashion PR maven Bonnie Morrison fits the bill to a T. Deemed “one of the most socially connected fashion publicists in New York” by Fashion Week Daily, Morrison, who currently represents fashion designer Chris Benz, has an impressive resume to prove it. Morrison has worked as a publicity director at the renowned fashion PR firm KCD (reps the who’s who in fashion) , PR consultant for Proenza Schouler, Dries van Noten, Phi and magazine editor for the now defunct Men’s Vogue. Rubbing shoulders with fashion’s distinguished set at industry cocktail parties or store openings is all in a day’s work for this New York City nightlife fixture, as is looking sharp. Although Morrison’s life revolves around all things fashion and current, you’ll never catch her piling on every one of the season’s trends. Morrison’s personal style leans towards a classic aesthetic which includes a mix of high and low designer wears and vintage styles. She’s that cool girl who always looks so enviably chic and comfortable without having to try so hard. She makes pinstripe blue shirts, navy wool peacoats, cardigans, shift dresses and a trench look anything but basic. While she tends to stick to a color palette of mostly grey, beige and black, Morrison doesn’t shy away from prints. And judging from the number of pretty, printed shift dresses we’ve seen her donning around town ,courtesy of The Sartorialist and the many other fashion street photogs who capture her looks during fashion week , Morrison must house a sweet collection of vibrant party frocks in her closet. We love how she’ll throw on a leather jacket or tie a long cardigan with a belt over these feminine dresses. We admire her ability to mix textures and play with proportions to infuse some polished charm to an ensemble. Like when she paired a black sequins cardi with a yellow flower print voluminous skirt. Another signature of Morrison’s style is her penchant for bejeweled bib necklaces to lend some glitz to her looks. She’s been quoted as saying she favors heirloom costume jewelry from the 50’s and 60’s. We’ve pulled together some of our favorite Morrison looks that best express her one of a kind style pedigree.

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Monday, January 11, 2010

Shala Monroque

IT GIRL: Shala Monroque by Alexandra Phanor-Faury While there may be an endless supply of pretty faces decked out, with the help of stylists, in head-to-toe au courant, designer pieces making the red carpet and party rounds, choosing our venerable It Girl can prove to be challenging at times. Essence.com’s It Girl must approach fashion with a truly individualistic eye, have savvy personal style, be adept at interpreting trends to make them her own, have an understanding of what looks good on her frame and, by all means, she must possess impeccable taste. Finding one individual with the aforementioned requirements can be rather difficult in a sea of style copycats, so you can imagine our giddy, school girl excitement when we discovered this week’s one-of-kind It Girl, Shala Monroque. The stunning social jet-setter, art enthusiast and editor-at-large of Pop Magazine possesses a high level of sophistication and elegance with a dose of eccentricity that is rarely seen and sorely missed in today’s fashion landscape. Monroque first picked our interest at the Paris Fashion Week S/S 2010. And how could we miss her? Among a sea of severe black and leather ensembles, there was Monroque front row at every show in a riot of eye-popping hues, prints, textures and statement necklaces. We love her willingness to stray from the pact with confidence. It’s no wonder this editrix made Vogue’s top ten best dressed list. Comments reach a fever pitch on The Sartorialist street-style blog every time her photograph is featured. There’s no doubt in our minds that Monroque is surely on her way to taking the fashion world by storm-both as an editor and as a style icon. The now famous spotting of Monroque outside the Miu Miu S/S 2010 show in head-to-toe Prada has come to define Monroque’s style pedigree. This is the image that got bloggers and fashion insiders professing their love for Monroque’s coveted style and touting her as fashion week’s breakout star. The pencil, flower printed, yellow Prada skirt paired with a simple brown leather belt and elaborate, tribal-tinged bejeweled Prada heels from F/W 08, beaded statement necklace and her signature chic turban says polished, urban sophisticate. Nevertheless, we love that she opted for a simple, cloth tote instead of a designer handbag to complete her stellar look. It’s those small, offbeat details that add layers to Monroque’s phenomenal looks and proves she’s not into taking fashion too seriously. And though we would love to own her enviable wardrobe, it’s her shinning confidence that has all of us paying close attention. You can check out Shala Monroque's musings on art, fashion and life on her very cool blog : http://shala.thepop.com/

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