The Jazz Emporium

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Sassy Bearcat of the Month

Hello Jazz fans!

It has been a while since we’ve featured one of our style icons, but after a long uninspiring gap, we’ve finally found one worth featuring!

‘Who is this angel of style?’ We hear you ask. ‘What sort of sartorially scintillating person could have captured your attention again after so long an absence?’

We answer thus; a characters so chock full of attitude and brave, on-trend style that just watching her on screen is akin to shopping at ASOS. That is, if ASOS included brass knuckle dusters and death metal iconography in their vast selection of stock… Which, actually, probably is exactly the case!

Meet Vod, from Channel Four’s delightfully cringe-tastic ‘Fresh Meat’. Students and ex-students alike can identify with the setting of the grungy student-shared house, weird, substandard lecturers and awful part time jobs that define a student’s existence. Harder to relate to, for many, however, is the aspirational costume design of the series; particularly obvious in Vod.

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Played by the foxy Zawe Ashton, Vod doesn’t mess about when it comes to style. In fact, she doesn’t mess about with anything, really. Self-confident and bold, she’s the epitome of a ‘yes woman’, clutching any style, trend or look that takes her fancy and rocking it effortlessly. True to the brave individuality of British style, she often hardens each sartorial foray with her signature industrial boots, or a similar post-punk edge. She is no clothes horse – the clothes work for her.

So, Vod, what do you feel like making your style bitch today?

Blue lips?

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Gentrified androgyny?

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1920s spit curls?Image

 

A 90s nod to dummies as accessories?

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Sexin’ it up in a chambermaid uniform? Er, yes…

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Let’s face it, this girl could jump naked into a skip and emerge draped in a black bin bag belted with a frayed curtain tie, draping a dead fox round her neck – and she’d be looking fan-bloody-tastic. The confidence with which she pulls off remnants of by-gone eras, or simply just remnants of clothes is awe-inspiring.

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And it seems that Vod isn’t just the creation of the costume designer; Zawe herself projecting influences into her character’s style; 

“This job is such a touch! It is so collaborative but you can also trust every single department to just be on it. If I send June (Niven), our costume designer, a picture of Prince and say this is our touchstone for this series – the next thing you know I’m wearing a ruffle shirt, a bolero jacket and my hair’s sticking up and it’s Prince. She runs with it, she is so inventive.”

Having the face behind Vod inject her own opinion on the character just makes her feel all the more authentic…

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Wanna echo Vod’s look? Slap on some plum lipstick, artfully rip a few holes into whatever your wearing and strut out into the street like you were born to wear it. Make no excuses and atone for no sins; Vod would never be so embarrassing…

Big up to bin bag chic! Next time, we’ll take a peek at another Fresh Meat bearcat; Oregon.

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Sassy Bearcat of the Week: Jayne Min aka Stop It Right Now

I’ve probably mentioned before the awesome Jayne Min, the sharply dressed blogger behind the equally awesome blog Stop it Right Now. Jayne is this week’s Sassy Bearcat not only because I am a tad obsessed with her high-fashion meets skater girl cool style, but because of her excellent post on consumerism and why fashion blog envy shouldn’t leave you maxing out your credit cards. All pics belong to Jayne Min obvs.


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Sassy Bearcat of the Week: Robyn

As you no doubt know that although The Jazz live off a meaty diet of rock n roll and electro, there are times when we like to abandon the pure lifestyle and stuff our faces/ears full off cheesy junk food pop. That doesn’t mean we aren’t still discerning, Robyn is a pop artist but her songs are definitely way better than normal radio fodder. And her style is off the hook, it is so not pop! Her style is brilliant mix of vintage 90s pieces and contemporary designers. She clearly dresses for herself not for what she thinks her audience wants (underwear if you go by what every other pop darling is wearing) which is a very The Jazz thing to do. That is why Robyn is this week’s style icon. Do check out her sometimes stylist Decida’s blog it’s trés trés cool. On to the looks…

Ps. Flat forms rock!


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Sassy Bearcat of the Week: Ivania Carpio

Sassy Bearcat of the Week has to be the amazing Ivania Carpio of the brilliant lil’ blog Love Aesthetics. The Jazz are loving her minimalist style, our matching obessessions for all things 90’s and her inspired use of hardware store materials as DIY accessories. Enjoy!

Can you pull off the minimalist look?


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Dapper Gent of the Week: David Bowie

David Bowie; Ziggy Stardust; The Thin White Duke or Jareth The Goblin King… No matter what title you are most familiar with, one thing is certain; you DO know him.

Therefore, there is no need to give any further information or validation as to why this is the first gentleman to join the ranks on the Jazz’s style icons. Instead, we implore you to enjoy these following examples of his fine self at work…

In case you were wondering, yes, we are areaologists; and proud of it. Are you?


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Sassy Bearcat of the Week: M.I.A

Keeping the controversial style icon theme going, we skip right ahead 40 odd years to this spunky babe. (Ugh, everything about that last phrase is freaking me out – spunky?? Babe?? Enough, let’s move on.)

M.I.A – real name Mathangi “Maya” Arulpragasam, is another fine female riding on The Jazz’s wavelength. A tiny fierce bundle of energy, this girl takes going fearless to a new level, both in her musical career and her unapologetic approach to fashion.

 

Of course, not giving a shit how other people judge your own sense of style does sometimes end up sparking a lot of debate – take her maternity wear choices for example; especially the much criticised and celebrated ladybug dress she wore for her appearance at the Grammys. Personally, we don’t get them haters. The female body is beautiful, no? And growing a baby inside you is a beautiful thing; something to be celebrated in each momma’s own way. What, was she supposed to shove on a draping wrap maxi-dress to try and mask the bump? What kind of symbol of pride would that be from a lady who is usually likely to be seen in swimming costumes and sequin leggings whilst nipping down to the shops? Pshaw.

She also gives hope to all those who feel age is catching up on them – (which, by lord, The Jazz are feeling acutely these days. Damn crows feet – we’re not even 24 yet…!), for this gorgeous lady, the centre of many trends and with her fingers on the pulse of many others, only hit stardom at the age of 31, and is cruising along on a Grammy,BET, ASCAP & UK Asian award winning high at the sweet age of 35 – as well as being nominated for an Academy award! (Thank the lord, it’s not all over for us yet!)

The final star to stick on this bearcat’s multi studded chart is her acceptance by the lords and ladies of high fashion; once refused from a Marc Jacob’s party, she has since modelled for him, and been cited as best dressed in Vogue. She modestly turned down her inclusion on the 50 most beautiful people list though; which goes to show that only the hottest babes need no published validation. We can all learn a thing or two from this girl; and if you haven’t thought to listen to her music yet, what the hell have you been doing with your life??

– Jazz Out.

 

Oh and P.S…Registering of interest for the Guest Blogger July/August position will close on the 30th of June – which gives all those starting out time to tap up some examples of their work for us to view! Friend us on Facebook and show us yer blogs ‘n’ togs!

What, this isn't what you wear to spin classes too?


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Sassy Bearcat of The Week: Janis Joplin

This week it’s all about Janis…

One of our ultimate icons; while her style doesn’t necessarily resemble The Jazz’s own, her ethos behind it represents everything we stand for…

Wear what you want; mix it up,and wear it well!!

Janis oozed confidence, and her fearless fashion decisions were inspiration to thousands; and despite provoking controversy everywhere she went, being an unapologetic ‘dirty hippy’, she was a main drive in popularizing the look.

She influenced a generation of women to step away from the severe geometric look of the 60s and embrace crushed velvet bell bottoms, flowing chiffon & loose knitted waistcoats; a freer, natural look. And the few photos she left behind show her influence still in the 70s fashion trends of today.

Janis models the popular bikini of the time, favoured by all die hard Woodstock belles...

Her style echoed her crazy, careless nature, full of soul and attitude; famous primarily for her abundance of accessories; she’d stack bangles on her wrists, pin feather boas in her tangled, exaggerated hair and layer on so many necklaces that she claimed she didn’t need any other clothes to protect her modesty! Just a bottle of Southern Comfort in hand is distracting enough…

She also spread the trend of the tattoo, with her body accessories ranging from a racy little heart on her breast, and a Florentine bracelet on her wrist.

“I wanted some decoration. See, the one on my wrist is for everybody; the one on my tit is for me and my friends.” Janis paused and chuckled, “Just a little treat for the boys, like icing on the cake.”

In the taboo-breaking culture of the 70s, such permanent inky statements were not accepted by the mainstream culture.

Sure, anyone could point out that Janis isn’t the most stereotypically beautiful of icons; but frankly that lack of formulated, polished style is what makes her more striking. And her strength of character in daring to be different, in rocking her outsider status is something far sexier than any old doll-faced waif, strutting their long, commercial legs down the catwalk.

Especially today we can all learn a lesson from Janis – Chicks; let go of the trowels of make-up, Cats; break free of the t-shirt/jeans mould. Feel who you are and let it show on the outside.

Here's lookin'...

...at you, kid.

She may have burned out brightly too young, and joined Brian & Jimi to party hard in the Forever 27 Club up there in heaven, but while the life light was still flickering strong within her, but this girl didn’t do anything by halves. Janis, we salute you.

Is that... someone waving?? ...Jimi?!