Monday, September 24, 2007

Glamour Magazine Messes With America’s Lovely Betty

I was at the grocery store with my mom purchasing cleaning supplies, when we get to the magazine racks at the checkout counter.

There was this girl in a cute puple dress on the cover of Glamour. She looked vaguely familiar, yet so very alien. Alien is the most apt description I could possibly think of....
The girl is America's new sweetheart and poster girl for health and normality, America Ferrera, the heroine of the awesome show "Ugly Betty".

America is right now one of the very few celebs I would love to have a bahn mi and vietnamese coffee with, or to rummage through racks of clothing at Decades with, because she seems intelligent, grounded and she is an incredibly talented actress as she demontrated in the movie "Real Women Have Curves". The woman just glitters.

America is also one of the few beautiful Latina faces in Hollywood along with my adored countrywoman Salmita Hayek who also produces Ugly Betty and both are making waves and making our people proud. The 2007 Oscars with the nominations for González Iñárritu and Guillermo del Toro made my heart swell with Mexican pride. We need more positive role models in Hollywood like these amazing and creative folks.

Both Salma and America are extremely size-positive people and strong women.
And both have taken a huge amount of insane criticism, because both do not meet the Hollywood standard of the starved and malnourished white chick starlet.

No offense, but if I looked like Lindsay Lohan et al., I would go on a steady diet of Ben and Jerry's Phish Food until I looked like a human menstruating woman again.

But Glamour could not leave perfectly beautiful alone.
They had to skinnify and perform Photoshop radical "cosmetic" surgery on America. And they did a FA ( freaking awful) job to boot.
They made her look literaly like a Latina version of ET.

Do fashion magazine editors really thing that we ONLY want to see freakishly thin folk as beautiful?
Or are they just more body dysmorphic than the rest of us?

It pisses me off that they cannot accept one of the very few healthy and beautiful women in Hollywood and put her on the cover in the gorgeousness that is her reality.

That is not her neck (it was slimmed and elongated) , her arms ( they were made thinner too, like in half) or her body. They basically just took her head and slapped it on Lilly Cole or Agyness Deyn's body.

I personally think it is criminal and offensive.

I want to see women like America, Salma , Queen Latifah and other not skinny women on the cover of more magazines.
And I want to see them just the way they are.

They should take a cue from Ugly Betty. Beauty comes in all kinds of packages. And the only kind of beauty that matters and that lasts is the one that shines from the inside out.

Canadian Fashion Scene

I am continuing my virtual trip around the world showing everyone my favourite stores, labels and stuff from the countries I have live in or visited or shopped at.
I lived in Montreal for a long time because I went to school and trained there. And I shopped a lot too. Living in Montreal was probably the happiest time in my life.

Montreal has some of the best shopping, especially for larger sizes anywhere in the world.
My favorite store was l'Addition-Elle on Ste. Catherine's Street right across the street from Eaton Centre which is part of the huge underground mall connected by the Metro. Here are a couple of their things from this season.

They have Addition-Elle all across Canada, but the selection in this store is special, since they have an upstairs floor with an upscale selection of designer and higher end clothing.
I got the best suit I have even owned there. It looks and wears and feels exactly like either Helmut Lang or Dolce& Gabanna, which as far as suits go, are really the best. It is made by a Canadian label called Louben. I do not know if anyone in the US carries it, but they damn well ought to. It is pricey. I paid about 500 CAD for the suit but it was worth every penny. It still looks brand new and fits like perfection. I think I have worn it to every single job interview I have had. Addition Elle also has a younger label called MXM which has cute things.

Another one of my favourite stores in Les Ailes de La Mode also on Ste. Catherine's.
They have a great selection of stuff including a stellar plus-size selection that had Ferre Forma by Gianfranco Ferre. They also had a couple of great spots to eat at the store including a sushi bar and one of the best cosmetic floors in the history of mankind.
You can check them out at:

I also loved Holt Renfrew on Rue de la Montagne. They are a very upscale store like Saks or Barney's. They carry a lot of exclusive high-end labels including Canadian designer Lida Baday.
Another awesome one is Ogilvie's also further up on Ste. Catherine's close to McGill University.
I love Ogilvie's because it has a lovely atmosphere of luxury and it is very beautiful inside. They also had the only Comptoir Sud Pacifique boutique in Montreal. It has gorgeous chandeliers and a great cafe.

Montreal has a great fashion scene and Canada has spawned some amazing designers like Lida Baday and the amazing Dsquared twins who nowadays show in Milan.

No place in the world with may be London as the notable exception, has better thrift and vintage shopping than Montreal.
Mostly this is due to their incredible network of thrift shops called Value Village/Village des Valeurs.
The very best one was on Rue Jean Talon close to the Metro and the Walmart.
A lot of outlet stores are in that area including one for l'Addition-Elle.
I scored the most amazing stuff there including a beautiful pink silk jacquard vintage Laura Biaggioti dress from the '80s, an off-the runway black Paco Rabanne trench coat, a beautiful Armani jacket, countless Pringles sweaters, a treaure trove of kilts, a Claude Montana jacket, a suede vintage Pierre Cardin jacket, the most beautiful Escada blouse and a gorgeous brand new Ralph Lauren blazer. I used to find lots of stuff from european stores like Marks and Spencer and Next.
The store is amazing. I used to shop there for other people including my asshole ex for whom I found his first and probably only Armani.
I also found amazing concert-t-shirts. Really people have NO CLUE what they toss away.
I used to go there armed with the latest copy of Vogue or Elle or InStyle and be able to reproduce any editorial or runway look with stuff I found there exclusively.

My opera evening gown is also by a Canadian design house, Sunny Choi.
The photos really do not do the dress justice because the ruching detail on the bodice is amazing it is chocolate silk and silk velvet and it and it has a small train. And yes, they do plus-sizes.

There is a new Canadian designer out of Montreal that I am really liking quite a lot. His name is Zoran Dobric and by the name I am thinking he might be of Croatian origin... (Croatians are sexy...).
His stuff is really lovely...
All these would work beautifully in women of all sizes? N'est-ce-pas?

A couple of Canadian companies in the fashion industry have my undying love because of their commitment to the cause of raising funds and awareness for HIV/AIDS and people living with this condition.

One is MAC cosmetics through creating and their continual commitment to the MAC AIDS fund and the Viva Glam Program ( you can click on RuPaul's photo on my profile page for donations to the MAC AIDS fund). For more info or to get Viva Glam lipsticks which are one one my trademarks please visit:

Another awesome Canadian company raising funds and awareness for HIV/AIDS is ALDO shoes which is also Montreal-based.
They are amazing people!
They sell the awareness tags at all of there stores and the funds benefit YOUTHAIDS around the world.

To find out more about the Aldo fights AIDS campaign and to get some awesome ALDO shoes, you can check out:

And those are some of the reasons why I love MY Canada.

Autumn- Winter 2008 Trends

So what is new and what is fresh as of late?
Strong shoulders. 1940's, Joan Crawford meets Claude Montana/ Dynasty 80's hardcore, high-shouldered silhouettes. For the fall, the hoochie California teen look is bulldozed by a comme- il- faut, powerful and proper lady.

Bakelite and plastic accessories are definite statements that reinforce the 1940's restrained, yet architectural feel, and pin-up girl shoes are added for a hint of cheeky sexiness in what is a refreshingly sober season.

The colour statement of autumn/winter 2007 is , with certainty, black. There is a preponderance of dark shades, but jewel tones like lapis, fushia, peridot and purple are adding a welcome splash of colour against an almost monochromatic background. A little bit of Joan Miro in a very Rembrant canvas.

These trends are very simple and easy to interpret and adopt for women of all sizes.
A strong shoulder balances out wider hips, and a cinched, confident waist, helps create beautiful hourglass shapes that have been absent from the fashion horizon for almost 2 full decades and are reminiscent of Dior’s New Look.

Make-up trends are classic. Strong, defined brows which are softened to make them modern, more Katherine Hepburn, Ingrid Bergman and Lauren Bacall than Joan Crawford or Bette Davis.

The look is sophisticated, and a little retro but still somewhat dewy and natural.
I love right now what I am baptizing as the "Snow White" lip. Luscious, sheer, juicy and red, but still inviting and carnal. Almost like you licked your lips after eating a raspberry popsicle. I achieve this look with MAC's cranapple lipliner, Benefit's Benetint lip stain and DuWop's Second Sin Lip Venom, layered in that order.
This lip is the perfect compliment to a polished face, with an emphasis on strong, yet clear eyes and perfectly arched brows.

The micro-mini of past seasons gives way to a classic, below- the-knee hemline that is flattering on just about everyone, interpreted in either a slight A-line or a sexy "wiggle" pencil skirt.

Trousers finally take a more wearable shape and have a more voluminous drape after the tyranny of almost 3 years of unforgiving, drainpipe styles.

These lines are almost universally flattering to a variety of body shapes and sizes.
This should be a season full of choices to compliment women with all types of figures, and a definite return to a chic and ladylike look inspired in equal parts by the leading ladies of Hollywood's Golden Age , the “power-women” of the 1980's , Patrick Nagel illustrations and the video vamps of the Robert Palmer videos.

Friday, September 21, 2007

Beth Ditto in British Vogue

I went for my weekly trip to the mall.
I went mainly to pay my tabs ( it's fitting that I liken my vice to alcoholism) and to get my eyebrows done at the Benefit Brow Bar.
I went to the Neiman's to pick up the stuff that I had selected at the pre-sale. Pre-sale is when they let people who shop there a lot pre-shop and get the best selection of the stuff that is going on sale. Since big sizes are the first to go, It comes handy.
Mainly just plain t-shirts, DKNY Pure and Three Dots and Ralph Lauren Black Label ( yes, he does XL) to replace all the ones I have that are stained and what not and I also got a pair of Marc by Marc Jacobs Birkenstocks that match all the prints in all my Marc Jacobs stuff.
I stop by the bookstore usually to check out the British Fashion Rags. The Holy Trinity: Vogue, Elle and InStyle. I do so accompanied by a refreshing glass of virgin Mojito from D'Lush (
I was highly engrossed and delighted at seeing one of my favorite new labels, House of Holland (also one of my myspace friends) and their rocking t-shirts.

They are so hot they smoke :-) For the non-fashion obsessed Giles Deacon is like the hottest thing to come out of British Fashion since like Alexander McQueen and Hedi Slimane is the guy who because of his immaculate tailoring got women wearing Dior Homme.

God... I am so tragically ahead of the fashion
Last week I also scored a Doo-Ri Chung (winner of the CDFA) dress for the sold out collection for the Gap that she, Thakoon and Rodarte did. There are pieces out there in an XXL (aka size 20!!!!!)
I got the belted shirt dress: (Middle dress, on Jaquetta Wheeler) in an impossible to find XL. They are very drapey and roomy so, it rocks... It pretty much was the only age -appropriate and flattering- to- my -body- piece in the collection...

To my even bigger delight, as I progressed through the volume, they had a piece on hot women on the UK music scene...
Guess who was on it looking fierce in a gold Giles Deacon dress??? Miss Beth Ditto!!!!

I was so happy.. the interview remarks from the reporter were kind of dumb with stuff like " She does not apologize for her size" ( WHY THE HELL SHOULD SHE, AND MOREOVER WHY IS IT SO SURPRISING????) and that some of her body parts were "pillowy" (like she can go straight to hell, from both Beth and me). Beth looks like a queen.