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Fashion rocks

As summertime is festival time, it’s high time to make your wardrobe ready for raucous parties.

But don’t think it is as easy as it seems. Musical festivals demand a thorough preparation. From tip to toe.

If you’re a total rookie in terms of open-air concerts, the best way to get inspiration is taking a leaf out of the star’s books. ‘Cause some of them are real experts.

Since I am desirous of showing you the European way of styling and partying, I instance Bianca Vaitl. She’s is a world-league-dj’s wife, a designer from Munich and she vacations in Interlaken (CH) at the Greenfield festival.

Her personal styling advices: “Only take a minimum of clothes along with you! And don’t forget about rubber boots, a rain cape, warm socks and a scarf which can be perfectly used as a sunscreen too.” Moreover, you need some basics, otherwise you would be in a fix: a bottle opener, a fixing pin, flashlight & earplugs .

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Mischa Barton for Philipp Plein

We all know Mischa’s body-weight fluctuations. She literally goes through thick and thin but she’s back on track if there are new shoots. After her chubby timeout from business, she could land a job for Philipp Plein.

The German designer began his fashion career in 2004. With his street-fashion collection he set the stage for his first store in the high-end club “P1” in Munich. With his “Heavy metal collection” in 2008, he outfitted Heidi Klum’s “Germany’s next top models” in Barcelona & contracted Naomi Campbell & Marcus Schenkenberg for a “Vogue” campaign. Not till then, he made his career.

For the most of us, his clothing is probably prohibitive. But this amazing collection & Mischa Barton are really worth a look.

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Teesra kaun? Prajapati ya Kalimuddin

Teesra kaun? Prajapati ya Kalimuddin

Roxy Gagdekar

The CBI and CID (Crime) have got entirely opposite views as far as the third man in the Sohrabuddin encounter case is concerned. The CBI says the third man is Tulsi Prajapati, while the CID (Crime) says it was Kalimuddin Shaikh, a close aide of Sohrabuddin.
CBI believes that Prajapati's fake encounter was part of a larger conspiracy, while CID thinks he was killed by some officers just for fame. Both the investigating agencies have been struggling to prove their point but it seems the CBI has managed to collect more and better evidences.
Sources said the CBI has collected a series of evidence to prove that the third person with Sohrabuddin when he was abducted was Prajapati. CBI has in its chargesheet mentioned that Prajapati was accompanying Sohrabuddin when they were abducted.
CID, on the other hand, is of the belief that the person was Kalimuddin and he had nothing to do with the Sohrabuddin case. CID, however, has failed to prove that Tulsi was not present at the place from where Sohrabuddin was allegedly kidnapped by the cops. CID's view is that Tulsi was arrested in Udaipur and was taken to Ahmedabad to be killed in a pre-planned conspiracy by the cops.
CBI has mentioned in the chargesheet that after the abduction, Prajapati and Sohrabuddin were taken in a Tata Sumo, while Kausarbi travelled in a Qualis car.
The chargesheet further said that Prajapati was taken to Udaipur in Rajasthan, while Sohrabuddin and Kausarbi were brought to Disha farmhouse in Ahmedabad.
The CBI has also collected important evidences about Tulsi's fear of being killed in a fake encounter, including testimonials of his fellow jail inmates.
Sources said after the Supreme Court directed the CBI to probe the Sohrabuddin fake encounter case, it immediately began collecting evidences first from Rajasthan. CBI has so far recorded the statements of the jailor of Udaipur jail from where Prajapati wrote a letter expressing fear of being killed in a fake encounter.
The CBI has also apparently recorded the statements of Rajasthan cadre IPS officer Rajiv Dasot and another officer in connection with the Prajapati angle in the case.
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Gaza fires rocket at Israeli city

Gaza fires rocket at Israeli city

Jerusalem: A rocket fired from Gaza Strip on Friday hit Israel's 5th largest city of Ashkelon, a day after the Arab League gave green signal to resume direct talks between Israel and the Palestinian Authority (PA).
The Grad-type rocket hit a coastal resort causing some damage but no casualties. None of the Palestinian groups in Gaza immediately took responsibility for the attack.
At least two people were treated for shock. The northern Negev city has been hit many times by rockets during Israel's offensive in the Gaza Strip in 2008-09, but the number of attack has since been subsided. Four Qassam rockets and two mortar shells were fired at Israel last weekend, but none of them caused any casualties.
Hamas controls the coastal strip since June 2007 when its fighters vanquished security forces loyal to PA in pitched battles. Israel has said that it will hold Hamas responsible for any attack directed on it from Gaza.
Meanwhile, American efforts bore fruit when Arab League foreign ministers in Cairo authorised PA to enter into direct negotiations with Israel, but left it up to the Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas to decide on the timing.
Israel welcomed the decision, with prime minister Binyamin Netanyahu issuing a statement saying he was "prepared to begin direct and honest discussions with the PA in the coming days." —PTI
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Abu-Sandeep plan Big Bash

Abu-Sandeep plan Big Bash

Designers Abu Jani-Sandeep Khosla complete 25 years next year; plan merchandise launches and series of shows that might see them rope in Aishwarya Rai Bachchan

Prithwish Ganguly

Veteran fashion designers Abu Jani and Sandeep Khosla's partnership is turning 25 years old next year and we hear that they have lined up a spectacle of fashion through the year. From fashion shows to having their own merchandise like perfumes and books, the designers are in preparation mode. We also hear that the likes of Aishwarya Rai Bachchan, Hrithik Roshan and many others will be roped in for the events.
A reliable source in the fashion industry says, "Abu-Sandeep always like lavishness and extravagance, be it in their ensembles or their preparation for shows. Now that they are turning 25 and having dressed up the who's who of India, it will be a grand celebration through the year. Ash has been very close to them and she is definitely being looked at being roped in for the celebration of fashion."
Sources also indicate that Abu-Sandeep's events might even see the likes of Mittals, Jidals, Ambanis and Mahindras and many others drop in given that they own their creations. Though Sandeep is tight-lipped about who all they are roping in, he discloses, "We have many friends and we are hopeful that they will be all with us in the celebrations. We are currently preparing how to approach the next year. We want to surprise."
Sandeep ends saying, "We have a series of plans. We are bringing out our signature merchandise to celebrate Abu-Sandeep's 25th year. We have planned to come out with three books that will narrate our history, how the line evolved and where we are today. We will also look to launch perfumes and other merchandise that keep the celebrations going through the year. We will have a very big show too in our city."

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'Nano ruckus has impacted Tata brand positively'

'Nano ruckus has impacted Tata brand positively'

Vivek Kaul

Trust, reliability and service to the community are some of the values associated with the name Tata, says Morgen Witzel, an honorary senior fellow at the University of Exeter Business School and a senior consultant with the Winthrop Group of business historians. Yet, internationally, awareness of the Tata brand remains patchy, Witzel, author of Tata - The Evolution of a Corporate Brand, told Vivek Kaul in an interview. Excerpts:

What does Tata as a brand stand for?
There are three key values that seem to emerge from conversations I have had with people. One is the idea of trust. If you ask anyone within the Tata group what they think is the key element of the Tata brand, they will all say trust. The second notion is reliability — if we promise something, we will do it; if we promise something and it doesn't really work out then we will do it again till we get it right. I talked to somebody who bought one of the first Nanos. He said one of the reasons he bought it was that he knew it was going to be reliable. The third, as we just discussed, is the service to the community. Originally, service to India, but of course now Tata is a world wide corporation and they practise the same value of service wherever they go. Tata Consultancy Services in America, for example — the work they did when Hurricane Katrina devastated New Orleans. TCS Engineers played a vital role providing software to enable
emergency services for free.
Much of the Tatas' philanthropy is essentially in continuance of the past. Take Jamshedpur, built almost 100 years back. They never ventured into building a city again. Or take the big institutions like Indian Institute of Science or Tata Institute of Social Sciences. These were also built a long time back. Has the Tata group's social obligation come down over the years?
They are actually doing something big in terms of trying to make a difference, whether it is running programmes teaching people how to read, or rebuilding communities in South India after the Tsunami or doing environmental programmes, or helping farmers know what is the right time to sow their crops, which fertilisers are the best to use, etc.

There is such vast range of programmes. There hasn't been another Jamshedpur, but maybe the time for Jamshedpurs is past, maybe that was something that was right in the 19th century and isn't necessarily now. Also, there is a pretty big cancer hospital they are building in Calcutta. The amount of effort that they brought in Kerala for the tsunami, that was huge in terms of investment, too.
"JRD himself compounded the problem by failing to name a successor until late in the day," you have written in the book. Isn't Ratan Tata making the same mistake?
I wouldn't comment on that because that's none of my business. Also because we can look back with hindsight and say that JRD Tata should have named a successor soon. We only know that with historical hindsight. In 15 or 20 years we will know whether Ratan Tata made the right decision, we don't know now.
When Ratan Tata took over as the chairman of Tata Sons nearly two decades back, what challenges did he face with the Tata brand?
Ratan Tata felt there were two things. First, the brand itself did not have a firm identity. As he said "We had a reputation, we didn't have brand." And I think that is true because there was this great wealth of legacy that Tata had from the past and a huge amount of goodwill from everyone towards the group. But there was not a consistent and coherent image across the group. If you look at the brand marks that were used at that point of time, every company had its own. There was a confusion and inconsistency of message and image which he felt had to be rectified. The second was to go international. He was convinced that Tata's future in part lay outside India. And that meant translating the values of the Tata brand into the international markets. The first problem is pretty much solved. The second is still on going and will be ongoing for some time.
A lot of Tata companies do not use the Tata brand. Why?
Some of the reasons are historical. Take the case of Taj. It has such strong brand of its own, it was felt that it would be wrong to superimpose the Tata brand on top of it. So if you look at Taj, it says in quite small that it is a Tata group company. But it is still pretty much the Taj brand. Among the overseas brands like Jaguar, Land Rover, Tetley Tea in the UK or the Eight O'Clock Coffee in the US, to have these very strong and existing consumer brands rebranded as Tata could cause confusion in the minds of the consumer. But look at Corus Steel. It is now Tata Steel Europe.
What about Titan?
It's a legacy. And don't forget that the Tamil Nadu Industrial Development Corporation Ltd, owned by the Tamil Nadu government, is still the single largest shareholder. No one wants to offend the Tamil Nadu government.
And Trent?
I was told that when Trent was first established, Tata had never really gone into retail before and so it was perceived as a bit risky. So it was decided to kind of keep it on the edge. Trent, as you know, stands for Tata Retail Enterprises. And it took off and became a very successful brand in its own right. And there is again no reason to change it.
How is the Tata brand perceived abroad?
It depends where in the world you are talking about. In South Africa, where they have done a lot of brand promotions, the awareness of the Tata brand is very strong and has very similar perceptions to those in India. China is at the other end of the scale. In North America, Britain and parts of Western Europe, the perception is somewhere in between. It also depends on whether we are talking about business-to-business side of Tata, like steel, chemicals and so on, or the consumer side, like Tata Motors. In the business-to-business side, the awareness is also very high.
Has the ruckus created in West Bengal because of the Nano controversy impacted the brand?
I see no evidence. There is some evidence that the impact has actually been positive. Possibly not in West Bengal, but some of the information that I have seen suggests people in other parts of the country have reacted positively. They saw the Tatas taking a strong and a principled stand and refusing to cave in. And I think that on the whole, the impact has been very, very little… if there has been an impact, it's just marginally positive.

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Rape accused, on bail, nabbed for molestation

Rape accused, on bail, nabbed for molestation

Ajmeri Shaikh, arrested but given bail over rape and murder of girl found on police quarters terrace, allegedly fondled a woman near site of Kurla building collapse

Divyesh Singh Mumbai

This is as bizarre as it gets. A rape and murder accused, freed on bail, uses a tragedy for another dubious end. If the police version of the story is to be believed, the accused goes to the site of a building collapse, and amid the chaos and confusion, molests a woman and steals her mobile phone.
Mohammad Ajmeri Shaikh, 29, was released on bail a few days ago after being in jail for some time over the rape and murder of an underage girl. On Thursday, after getting news of the collapse of Rafique Estate in Kurla Kasaiwada, Shaikh went to the spot saying he was joining the rescue efforts.
"Around 2.45 am, Ajmeri sneaked into a house which was a short distance from the collapse spot. Most people in the locality were out of their homes to help the trapped residents of Rafique Estate. Ajmeri thought he could take advantage of the situation," alleged Dilip Sawant, deputy commissioner of police, zone VI.
"A woman aged 22 was asleep in the house. Ajmeri fondled her and then stole a mobile phone. The woman woke up in time to see Ajmeri fleeing," Sawant said.
She raised an alarm, hearing which her brother woke up. Along with a few other men, he started chasing Ajmeri. The group managed to assault him, but he disappeared in the labyrinthine lanes of Kasaiwada.
The group registered a complaint against him with the Nehru Nagar police. Ajmeri was nabbed in the evening when he emerged from Kasaiwada after remaining in hiding for hours on end. He was booked under charges of molestation, trespass and theft.
Ajmeri's lawyer Prakash Wagh, who appeared for him in the rape and murder case, said: "I have no idea about the Kasaiwada case."

Locals said Ajmeri announced that he was going to the spot to help people, but then he wandered away somewhere else. His family members said they had no idea where he was throughout Thursday. Ajmeri's wife left him a few months before his first arrest. She married another man around the same time as Ajmeri was suspected in the rape and murder of a girl, whose body was found on the terrace of the police quarters building opposite the Nehru Nagar police station.
Police said Ajmeri's brain-mapping tests suggested he had something to do with the crime, though the evidence is not admissible in court.

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Fine feathers make fine birds

Intro to the new style guide

Whatever they wear - their clothes are stylish. No matter what they do - they're hip.  It's almost a matter of common knowledge: Stars have the right touch what concerns fashion. Is it just because of their fashion adviser?
I think everybody knows the problem: Every morning you stand helpless in front of your closet not knowing what to don. And although the wardrobe is jam-packed, it seems if there's no wearable outfit at all. An issue of the average folk? Sometimes I do think so. 
Stars have a walk-over: They are lousy with cash & are able to purchase the latest fashion trends. And what has to be added: Almost every garment they don mutates into the next it-piece. That's so unfair. So, I started grappling about their secret. And I cracked it. The following article will enlighten you.
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How to find your personal style

As I already mentioned it's hard for "the average joe" to find the personal distinctive style.
A glance at the wardrobe reveals ...

... the problems:

  1. too many cloths
  2. various different styles
  3. no semblance of order 
  4. no leitmotif
The solution:

As I rank among these (pretty) lost causes, I conducted an experiment on my own and serve as a guinea pig. In recent years, I gathered lots of pieces of clothing: ready-made garment, loose fit, custom garment, glad rags & total mispurchases. In a nutshell, all and nothing. No way to find a continuous style. So I started to tidy up my wardrobe. (Attention should be paid to the fact that my wardrobe was chock-full so I needed a clothes rail for the leftovers)

Step one: Take stock


Attend to my words:
It doesn't make sense to go immediately shopping & to purchase new garments while not knowing what exactly stores in the most remote corners of your wardrobe.

Step two: Sorting

After you got a first overview of your clothes, try to seperate the articles of clothing you personal like from those you have never worn or which are quite honestly as ugly as sin and old-fashioned. But stand firm! And do really try to part with those things you would probably never ever wear. Then, make two decks. One for the things which are probably wearable and the other one for a sale to giving-away prices (at jumble sales or somewhere else.) Don't expect to make big bugs, be happy to earn some peanuts out of your sortings.

Step 3: Mirror, mirror on the wall, who is the fairest one of all?

After the sorting out, please don't think you have not a rag to put on. There will be enough left, believe me. So now, it's time to don the remnants and to realise  what suits you and what not! It's helpful to use a big mirror & be honest to yourself. Make use of photographs, if you need them & take a picture of you wearing the outfit. A photograph never lies and unearths the truth.

Step 4: Regroup suitable outfits

As your wardrobe is mucked out now, you'll see it's much easier to create new outfits. Believe me, as time is money, the result is really time-saving. Now, you got a general idea of your favored garments & you can filter out which style you unconsciously trend to.

My personal result:
Lots of residual clothes hanger (as I sorted so many out)

And a much more tidy clothes rail (the rest is ready for jumble sale and stores in my wardrobe.)

My preliminary conclusion:
Much to my regret & I didn't find my ultimate personal style. I pretty much tend towards black-and-white outfits & the marine style & with a distinct tendency to rock chic (a result of my other clothing which is not shown on the photographs).

This sorting really disburdended me and helped a lot to get to know my style better. This experience has taught me one thing: Before purchasing a new garment I will deliberate whete I really need this article of clothing to avoid further bad buys.
Finally, I hope I could give you a little instruction if you're such a lost cause like I was.

Now it's your turn: Have you already identified your personal style? Or are you still straying around in the big, wide world of fashion?
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Out now:

My personal guide to identify your distinctive fashion style.
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Look out! Bluff package.

For many fashion-loving women without the perfect "36-23-36" proportions Crystal Renn was a paragon. Her biography "Hungry" (released autumn '09) encouraged many chubby fashionistas not to fall for "slimness mania" and accept their female body with its spots of bother.
Crystal Renn was probably one of the most famous plus-size-models. Note well: was!
Recently, she got booked by Karl Lagerfeld & decided to jettison her attitude. She lost leastwise 20 pounds and is just skin and bones anymore. From size 16 - 20 to size zero in the last weeks. Scary.
Her agency explained Crystal's extreme weight loss as follows:
 "It's understandable that the folks shocked. But she didn't really lose weight, she was just mountain climbing."
Are they kidding me, I thought, when I read it the for first time. The really take Crystal's fans for fools. Unbelievable. It's to bad about her as she knuckles the beauty industry.

Here are some pics, comparisons between the skinny model Jacquelyn Jablonski (left side) & Crystal
(right side) when she was lumpy.
I really ♥ them.

Well, her thighs are curvier than Jacquelyn's but the shoot proves that the outfit fits snugly.

 She's so gorgeous.

Chubby women shouldn't disclaim extravagance.

But these comparisons are a thing of the past. In March 2010 she modelled for the "Fashion for Passion" campaign and was obviously skinnier than at the Milan fashion week of 2007.

Now, it's your turn. What do you think of her change of image? Is she just a great bluff?
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My initial purchases

Who is chummy with me knows there is hardly a week without shopping.
And as I do not deprive you of my purchases I uploaded some pics of my latest aquirements.

♥ Aviator sunglasses & Guess Liliana Hobo Berry

♥ Dresses by Ami. Su & Review

Perfectly happy.
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Paul & Joe Beaute

A hot tip for all beauty lovers: Paul & Joe Beaute (discovered by 5am je t♥aime)

Sophie Albou designed "cosmetics that convey perfectly the Parisian philoslophy of enjoying life". But not only cosmetics, the limited "Collections sparkles" is available as well.

Check it out:
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My wants and needs

  • LG KF900 (Prada 2)
  • L'oréal Glam Shine 6h (nuance 114 Tempting Pink)
  • Guess Liliana Hobo Berry
  • Aviator sunglasses silver
  • Clinique eyebrow pencil 02 soft brown
  • Davenport
  • Paul Green Sneakers
  • Handsome boyfriend
... more following.
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Summerly trends 2010

Every year it's interesting watching the new trends developping. But most of them are just old-fashioned revivals. Only a few are real trendy innovations.

One of them seems to ascend right of the artistic vernissages of France, Spain and Germany. But all jokes aside: Nowadays art is not only destined to paint easels, it found its way to the normal course of life: Print-shirts are in, more than ever. And so painting transforms every simple white shirt into modern art à la "je ne sais quoi". Whether comics or colourful scribblings, almost everything serves as a model. Have a look.

See by Chloé - Cat on Cotton

K Karl Lagerfeld


What do you think about Print-Shirts?? In or "so last season"??
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One Day in Mayence

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Be curious about what's coming up!
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The Red Bull Air Race

The Red Bull Air Race, started since 2003, is an annual international series of air race event organized by Red Bull in which competitors have to navigate a challenging obstacle course in the fastest time. Pilots fly individually against the clock and have to complete tight turns through a slalom course consisting of pylons, known as "Air Gates".

The races are held across several countries mainly over water near cities, but are also held at airfields or natural wonders.

The following images are from the event held in Perth, Australia. Hannes Arch of Austria won the Red Bull Air Race on Sunday with Matt Hall of Australia getting a career-best second place in front of an enormous crowd of 140,000 watching from the banks of the Swan River in Perth, Australia.

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When things go wrong…

A PR exercise gone awry can sometimes cost the star dear

Soumyadipta Banerjee

The Twitterati is abuzz with opinions on whether actor Akshay Kumar's recent meeting with a renowned cartoonist ailing in a hospital was a publicity stunt in bad taste or not. Not just him, other actors too have many a time been caught on the wrong end of the promotion stick.
Ask actor Malaika Arora-Khan who for promoting a fairness campaign's concept of rekindling love in long marriages apparently made it out to seem as if she was getting divorced. The couple faced severe fire from fans and the media.
In actor Om Puri's case, a few selective portions about his wife Nandita's biography were leaked out. "They (the publicity team which leaked out portions about Om Puri's romance with his caretaker during his early years) never consulted me when they were leaking out that story," admits Nandita.
Actor Akshay Kumar walked the ramp and got wife Twinkle to unbutton his trousers. This incident landed them in a police station.
Lastly, the case of film Dev.D. "We had introduced a phone sex line in Kalki's (Koechlin) voice where Kalki asks sexual prefernces in an inviting voice. It was an IVR (automated response) machine but later we had to shut it down when there were complaints of obscenity against us," says a publicist.

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Ram Gopal Varma and Karan Johar war again

Mumbai: Film-makers Ram Gopal Varma and Karan Johar are known widely for not being friends having locked horns in many verbal duels with each other.

This time RGV has taken the lead in opening the fire against KJo by tweeting, “I hate I hate luv stories for being a big hit and I luv I hate luv stories cos its kjos film who I love 2 hate and hate 2 love and that’s our luv hate story.”

Of course, Karan was not going to take it lying down so he replied back to Ramu saying, “Thank u ramu!!! superb tweet ramu!!! You couldn’t have worded our “story” better!!”

Their verbal duel has cause widespread gossip in the grapevine.

A prominent producer says, “It is not fair for anyone to go personal against anyone. It is odd that Ramu has again opened the hatchets. KJo and he were lying low for a long time. This was uncalled for. It just increases the already existing negativity that the two have. It does not look good that Ramu is venting out his emotions in public. It does not look good for a film-maker of his stature to do this.”

Another producer adds, “It will only heighten the discord that the two have. Karan is having a good moment with his film doing well and this was uncalled for. It also shows that RGV hates him to an extent that he can’t stand his success. It is unnecessary.”

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