Monday, March 31, 2008

Madonna @ Vanity Fair's May 2008 Issue

Goddess Madonna is the cover star of May 2008's Vanity Fair issue. The feature entitled "Madonnarama!", interviewed by Andy Cohen and photographed by Steven Meisel, coincides with the debut of her latest album "Hard Candy". A little snippet from the article's header:

As she nears 50, Madonna’s narrative is shifting. Yes, there’s another new super-pop album, Hard Candy, with Justin Timberlake and Pharrell Williams. But there’s also Filth and Wisdom, the feature film she’s co-written, produced, and directed, and I Am Because We Are, her documentary on Malawi, the aids-ravaged country where she controversially adopted her third child. Whisked to L.A. for an intense prep session, followed by an almost two-hour interview, the author explores the evolution of the Madonna myth as she harnesses her image-making genius to a cause, a philosophy, and the search for her true self.

I can't wait to get my own copy and will be on the look out for it in my mail box, as Vanity Fair is one of most anticipated publications every month, next to New York Magazine and Entertainment weekly.

Via Vanity Fair

PrideFest Parade @ Lake Worth, Florida

Are pride parades all about drag queens? The answer is no but they do add some glitz factor to the festivities and without them it would be pretty dull. Same goes for go-go boys...
These images from today's Pal Beach Post show Miami's drag queen "Adora" as she rides on "The Cottage" float during the parade held as part of the fifteenth Annual PrideFest of the Palm Beaches yesterday in downtown Lake Worth. Organized by Compass, the two-day festival is among the largest gay and lesbian festivals in Florida. Who knew?

Dita Von Teese @ The New York Times

Domains Section.
Show Stopper: Dita Von Teese — burlesque performer and lingerie designer for the Wonderbra company — lives in a 1920s, three-bedroom Craftsman home in the heart of Hollywood.
Biggest misconception about burlesque: That it’s about dancing around in hot pants with feather boas. Burlesque was about the striptease. The stars of burlesque took their clothes off, end of story, period.
Hardest thing about stripping: To make it look effortless and natural.

Her first corset: It was out of my life for a little while. It was stolen, by a friend of mine’s daughter. One day she returned it and said she was sorry. I was happy. I have hundreds of corsets, but that is the most important one.

Worst moment onstage: My hair caught on fire. I do an act where I sit on a vanity table that has candelabras on it. Well, there was a lot of hair spray going on. I realized what was happening and put my hair out. The show went on.

Next big purchase: I’m getting ready to make a new show, and that is always a big expense. It will involve $80,000 worth of costumes and props. This one is going to be especially rhinestone heavy.
Personal hero: Mae West. There hasn’t been another actress in the world who wrote every line she ever said in a film.

Morning routine: My waking time always changes, because sometimes I am really jet lagged. When I’m home, I am up around 9 o’clock. First, I check my BlackBerry, which is next to me in bed. Then I let my dogs outside and get everybody breakfast.

Best thing about divorce from Marilyn Manson: There’s a long list. I am happy to have the drugs out of my life.

Fear about new love: That I’ll fall for a man who wants a modern, minimalist interior.

Prized possession: I took my engagement diamond and had it transformed at Christian Dior in Paris into a beautiful ring. It’s nice; it’s big. I feel like I suffered greatly for that diamond, and it needed to be reborn into something better.

Performance piece: Yes, I do perform in a giant martini glass, but I don’t keep it at home. All my props are kept in storage, a really big storage space, because I have a lot of things even bigger than that glass. I have never been where they are stored, to be honest. It’s somewhere in Los Angeles.

Animal friends: I have various taxidermied animals. I have a peacock, swans and birds in large glass domes. They’re beautiful.

Rainy-day activities: Sitting in front of the fire with my pets, two dachshunds and three Devon Rex cats, which is a breed that has unusually large ears and wide-set eyes.

Indispensable gadget: A 1940s phone station. It’s a stand that holds the phone, and you sit in it. You can’t move around. I used to have a cordless phone and I hated it.

Waistline: I’m not technically a tight lacer. It’s a fetish, in which you wear extremely tight corsets all the time. I don’t sleep in my corsets, and I’m not obsessed with obtaining the world’s smallest waist. My waist is around 18 inches.

Velvet painting: A painting of me by an artist named Olivia, who specializes in pinups.

Burlesque memento: I have an artifact of the famed burlesque star Sally Rand, from 1939. It’s a box that says “Winter Underwear for Men” on it. Inside is a crocheted warmer for a man’s equipment. It’s hysterical.

Guilty pleasure: Eating foie gras in Paris. That has gotten me into a lot of trouble with PETA. But it is a guilty pleasure; I feel guilty and horrible about it.

Extra bedrooms: I turned one of them into a dark, jewel box of a bedroom. Another is a wardrobe with my dresses, shoes and vintage clothes. The third is devoted to my hat collection and vanity. It’s a real powder room.

Collections: I collect in a crazy way. I have at least 15 collections. I collect vintage hair combs; vintage clothes; vintage lingerie; hats; jewelry; cigarette holders.

Favorite collection: My hats. When I look at them I can’t believe these are things that women wore on the street every day. They are dramatic and distinctive.

Treasured eras: For taxidermy, Victorian; for furniture, Art Deco; for lingerie, 1940s stockings and Victorian corsets; hats I like mid-1940s, when they wore the little tilted hats, like men’s hats.

What she drives: I have two classic cars, a 1939 Chrysler New Yorker and a 1965 Jaguar S-Type. I drove a Chrysler 300. But I just got a new car, a BMW Z4.

Fanciest corset: It’s by Mr. Pearl, without a doubt the world’s most-sought-after corset maker. He lives in Paris, and all the couturiers go to him. He has an unmatched talent for creating the perfect wasp waist. Each corset requires between 6 and 20 fittings.

Evening routine: I have no routine. I am happy if I am in bed by 1 a.m. It’s a great victory for me if I can sleep eight hours or more.

By her bed: A beautiful Art Deco box with a condom in it. I’m a single girl.

Favorite chore: Grocery shopping. I wasn’t always able to afford food, so I love putting things in my cart and realizing I can afford them.

Always in fridge: Eggs and truffle sauce. I order the sauce online. It is called Truffle Gatherers sauce. It is so good with eggs. It is very precious to me.

What she misses about America when abroad: More value to the dollar.

Fitness routine: About 20 minutes jumping on the trampoline and an hour of Pilates. I often take Sundays off.

What she wanted to be when she grew up: A ballerina.

Obsession: Ballet shoes. I have a collection dyed in every color of the rainbow.

Belief system: There are superstitions in burlesque. You aren’t supposed to put your shoes on the table. I try to pay attention to that, but I really like looking at my shoes, so I put them on the table all the time.

Perfect kitchen: One of my big extravagances when I moved out of my former husband’s house was a matching pink stove and refrigerator in ’50s style. Unlike real vintage items, they work.
Obsolete item she can’t bear to part with: Everything I have is obsolete. That’s the point.

Inc Bear @ Tokyocube

Inc is the exclusive new release from Instinctoy in Japan, and is their much anticipated first original figure which has been in development for the past year. Inc is a bear creature with liquid ink features, leaving a set of footprints (included in this set) behind him as he walks. This is limited to a run of only 100 worldwide, with only 15 made available outside Japan and most already sold out in the country. Available at Tokyocube for £49.95. Love it!

Sunday, March 30, 2008

Eye Of The Yeti Ashtray @ Gama-go

Nothing escapes the Eye of the Yeti! This jumbo ashtray will hold loads of butts, keys, spare change, or what have you. Full color ashtray with allover design and three cutout construction. 10" diameter x 1.25". Available for US$24.95 at Gama-go.

Christina Aguilera For Stephen Webster

Christina Aguilera looking stunning in the new ad campaign for jeweler Stephen Webster. Christina has come a long way from tween mouseketeer, via dirrrty X-tina, to her current 1940's glamour gal. She has had some serious fashion missteps along the way but finally she has come to her own skin. She does incorporate the classic Hollywood starlet persona perfectly and this is the best she has ever looked in my opinion. I guess motherhood did her very good!

Friday, March 28, 2008

Make Me A Supermodel: The Bronnie Tee

Last night I sat through the yawn-inducing "Make Me A Supermodel" reunion show. The event was hosted by Bravo's Andy Cohen, doing the "sleaze" job by trying to instigate the contestants against one another. The 14 original hopefuls were all back together, sitting by the show's catwalk, and were also joined by their hosts and judge panel. This episode's editing was shoddy and seemed to cut off when things were about to get good. Not many unseen behind-the-scenes snippets unfortunately, though Holly telling her squirrel stew hunting story was pretty priceless. She let her inner Virginia hillbilly out once and for all, and she came out cuter than ever. The bulk of the show was dedicated to Ronnie & Ben's bro-mance and Bravo's shameless plug of their "Broonie" T-shirts, available for sale at their website for US$19.95. One contestant even dared to wonder whether both models would have stuck out this long had their "relationship" never gotten so much air-play. Makes me wonder too, bud...
The final episode is this coming Thursday and I will let you know who gets the big bucks.

Images Via Show Patrol

Victoria Beckham's Double Dose

Victoria Beckham went fashion-chameleon this month, first as Vogue UK's April cover celeb and on the current ad campaign of Marc Jacobs. On the ads she is looking more Scary than Posh in my opinion, but I give her kudos for daring to go "un-pretty" for the fashion label. It seems to me that celebs nowadays have become "labels of themselves", always so polished and perfect-looking that is fresh to find people that goes against the grain. As a Brit she is showing that she hasn't lost her eccentric side or sense of humour by donning a really silly little bow atop an equally silly wig. My only advice would be to lay off the spray tan and bronzer powder, if she wants to look human at least .

New Racial Controversy: Vogue & King Kong?

This is the first time a black man appears on the cover of America Vogue and the instead of applauding the magazine for the milestone some critics already found a way of turning it into a racial controversy. Maybe it's because of the turbulent times of election year and Barack Obama's eminent nomination but allusions to the movie King Kong are already circulating the web. The nay-sayers accuse NBA star LeBron James of being portrayed in an aggressive gorilla-stance, arms apart and hunched over, mouth agape showing his teeth, while embracing the Caucasian and delicate Brazilian super-dupper-model Giselle Bundchen. Critics will find a way to stir up trouble and see evil in the most remote place or innocent of actions, so it always seem. The more I look at the King Kong posters the more I see the similarities but I don't believe that was photographer Annie Leibovitz's or Anna Wintour's hidden agenda as after all this is Vogue magazine people! It's not a tabloid or some exploitative/funny publication.
I wish they had nixed this LeBron (who?) guy - that has as much to do with Vogue as Andre Leon Talley has to do with Sports Illustrated - and had Giselle in the strong arms of her hunk Tom Brady. That would have been a GREAT Vogue cover and he wouldn't have been compared to a white gorilla.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

The Orifice Of Pikachu

"Quickly children, into Pikachus's vagina now!"

Star Wars Original Limited-Edition Prints

From packaging to catalogs, the vintage Kenner Star Wars line is known for its bright images and graphics. For the most part photo art, or photographic prints that have been hand-altered in some way, were the master pieces of art used to create the images seen in boxes and catalogs around the world. However, photo art required the use of original photography, for Kenner almost never used illustrations or drawings for their images.
The task of taking the photos that would ultimately be used to produce photo art or that would perhaps remain unaltered was given to an outside design firm. While Kenner would ultimately provide guidance and have the final say on approval, it was up to the photographer at the studio to provide the photos, under the guidance of the design firm.
The photographer in charge of virtually all vintage Star Wars photography work at the outside design firm used by Kenner was Kim Simmons. He was ultimately responsible for images that would be used for packaging, comps (or mock-ups), some publicity images, and some of the slide presentations. Fortunately, for Star Wars collectors and enthusiasts alike, Kim meticulously kept nearly all of his work that was not given to Kenner as final art pieces.
Now you can own a piece of history by ordering from our exclusive selection of limited edition prints based on Kim’s work. Each print is hand-numbered and will never be offered for sale again once the allocated quantity of each individual print size has been distributed. These are no ordinary prints either. They are printed on the highest quality Fuji archival photography paper with metallic ink, and have been created from high resolution drum scans of each original negative or transparency and are unparalleled in quality. Don’t pass up this once in a lifetime chance to purchase your very own piece of Star Wars history!

There are nine different prints to choose from, in sizes of 8 x 10 to 20 x 24, including a Princess Leia wardrobe lay-out. Star Wars Action Figure Limited Edition Prints ($30-$80)

The 10 Unhealthiest Places In America

That's what publisher CQ Press reveals in its 16th annual list. Twenty-one factors from infant mortality to obesity to cancer rates are compiled for the rankings.

No. 1: Mississippi
Topping the list as the most unhealthy state in America, the Magnolia State has stolen the dubious honor from last year's "winner," Louisiana.Its title is well-earned: Mississippi has the highest rate of teenage births in the nation, the highest age-adjusted death rate, the highest infant mortality rate and the highest rate of sexually transmitted diseases. It also has the largest precentage of obese adults and adults who do not exercise.

No. 2: Louisiana
The Pelican State may no longer be the most unhealthy state in the nation, but it's pretty close at No. 2.Louisiana has the second-highest age-adjusted death rate, the second-highest infant mortality rate and the worst access to primary care.

No. 3: New Mexico
Not living up to its nickname as the Land of Enchantment, New Mexico has seen its health care situation continually decline since 1998.It has the third-highest teenage birth rate, poor prenatal care, high rates of suicide and poor health insurance coverage. The availability of hospital beds and primary care is also poor.

No. 4: Nevada
For the fourth year in a row, the Silver State remains in the No. 4 spot.It is the No. 1 worst state for prenatal care and has the second-highest suicide rate in America.

No. 5: Florida
The Sunshine State remains as the fifth most unhealthy state for the second year in a row.The percentage of its population not covered by health insurance is one of the worst in the country. It also ranks fourth for new cancer cases and third for new AIDS cases.

No. 6: Georgia
Things aren't peachy in the Peach State when it comes to health. Just 10 years ago, Georgia ranked as the 30th most unhealthy state. Fastforward to today, where it nearly makes the top five.It ranks fourth for the number of new AIDS cases reported and fifth for the number of sexually transmitted diseases. On the plus side, it has one of the best rates of child immunization.

No. 7: South Carolina
For the eleventh year in a row, the Palmetto State has fallen into the top ten unhealthy states.Contributing to its rank are its high percentage of low birthweight babies, high infant mortality rate, high number of new AIDS cases and high rate of sexually transmitted diseases.

No. 8: Oklahoma
The health outlook wasn't always so poor in the Sooner State. In 1993, Oklahoma was in the middle of the pack, instead of topping the list.Its high teenage birth rate, poor prenatal care, high age-adjusted death rate and high percentage of people not covered by health insurance are just some of the factors keeping it there.

No. 9: Alabama
Moving two spots up the list, the Yellowhammer State is just a smidge more unhealthy this year, compared to last year's rankings.Alabama is in the top five for low birthweight babies, age-adjusted death rate, infant mortality, sexually transmitted diseases, poor primary care access, obesity and non-exercising adults.

No. 10: Delaware
The First State rejoins the top 10 since its last visit in 2004.Helping to bring Delaware down are its percentage of mothers receiving late or no prenatal care, its high infant mortality rate, high rate of new AIDS cases and sexually transmitted diseases.


Wednesday, March 26, 2008

The Beauty and The Beast

These photos were taken at the Versace Men's Wear launch party at Barney's, in New York earlier this week. Brazilian bombshell Isabeli Fontana looking like a supermodel should: simply stunning! She is flanked by THE Donatella Versace that could not be freakier looking, with those huge fake collagen lips and weird face-work. Doesn't she have a single honest friend to tell her that she has gone WAY overboard and everyone makes fun of her duck face? Donatella is a glamorous successful business woman, heading one of the world's most recognizable brand-names but she turned into some SNL parody of herself. Make her stop! She is scaring me!
Click images to enlarge but be warned that up-close it's even more frightening.

Lacquer Sitting Buddhas @ Vivre

I love these lacquered Buddha statuettes I found at Vivre. Their pop-ish colors give it a totally modern tongue-in-cheek touch to an eclectic decorated home. I have a teeny faux-jade Buddha that sits atop my fridge, back to the front door, to attract wealth as Asian-Brazilian superstition dictates.
These spiritual resin handmade statuettes are suppose to bring luck and peace plus a jolt of color to your home. Lacquer finish. No two are alike. Choose orange, yellow, red, or green. 18"tall. And if the US$450.00 is too steep of a price tag you can always visit your local Chinatown for a least expensive option. Hit Home Depot's paint department and grab a can of super-glossy spray paint and make your own one-of-a-kind icon.

Available at Vivre

These Glutes Are Made For Walking

If you don't get a chuckle out of this one you need to visit your doctor presto. I bet she can crush walnuts with her butt cheeks! I was a little frightened actually...

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Murakami & Louis Vuitton @ Brooklyn Museum

The Brooklyn Museum has finally confirmed it will host a pop-up Louis Vuitton shop to coincide with its Takashi Murakami exhibit starting next month. They've also put select items online to whet your appetite until the exhibit kicks off on April 4, like the super-adorable cushions and T-shirt above. But the real stars of the store will be the "monogramouflage" Vuitton handbags, which will sport a new monogram pattern created by Murakami. Images of the collection haven't been released, but we're kind of hoping the flower products online are a sneak preview.

Victoire de Castellane Is My Soul Mate

I came across this great short video on Dior Fine Jewelry's designer Victoire de Castellane on and had to post it here too. As I watched it I realized why I liked her designs for Dior so much - we are soul mates! The fabulous Victoire loves the same things that I do, like Japanese toys, miniatures in general and fake food props, prominently on display at her Paris office. Her collection of Disney snow globes is an homage to Jeff Koons, whom I am also a big fan, and such details are clearly apparent on her gorgeous creations. She admits that she likes everything "fake" and gets inspired by colorful and unusual everyday-things like bolts of neon plastic string, kept in overflowing baskets in her office.
She admits that "I would love to be Jessica Rabbit, but I'm more maybe the stepmother of "White Snow", clearly showing her sense of humor and "I'm a child-at-heart" sprit de vie.

A few images of my faux-food collection, held at the Pumpkin Mansion's permanent archive and a selection of my books on Jeff Koons. I do own a signed Koons print as I can't even dream of buying one of his sculptures or original paintings, unless I win the Lotto.