Fashion Illustrations

Stand and Deliver

By TINA WILSON

Hanky Panky lingerie as illustrated by Tina Wilson for Lingerie Briefs

Social media spats…we all have them, some of us more than others. I have my share, as I am passionate about the dreadful times we are living thru and for good or bad, I tend to share them without much hesitation.  I recently had a spat with an acquaintance on social media, and we worked it out and hugged, but during the back and forth this person seemed to back down and that got me to thinking.  What do I stand for? What do any of us stand for? And how far am I willing to go to stand for what I believe; how do I move from spouting off on Facebook or Instagram and into action? I then started to think about brands that stand for something, and how that kind of focus can lead to success.

I believe the brands that are successful, the brands that resonate for us are the ones that tell you who they are even before you read the label.  I have singled out some of those brands because they tell us at a glance what they are committed to. It is an art form.

One of the first to come to mind is Hanky Panky, whose thong can never be replicated by anyone. Hanky Panky’s legacy is comfort, lace and color.

Natori lingerie as illustrated by Tina Wilson for Lingerie Briefs

I have a special place in my heart for Natori and Josie’s commitment to heritage, embellishment and luxury.

Commando lingerie as illustrated by Tina Wilson for Lingerie Briefs

Commando in a relatively short period of time has taken a very successful stand for Made in the USA, timeless, superior fabrics and raw clean construction.

Skin lingerie as illustrated by Tina Wilson for Lingerie Briefs

Skin is one of my favorite sleep brands, and unmistakable for their natural quality fabrics, subtle details and luxe simplicity.

Laurence Tavernier lingerie as illustrated by Tina Wilson for Lingerie Briefs

I’ve been a fan of Laurence Tavernier for decades, they take the masculine feminine layering look and they own it, along with tailored quality construction.

Ugg sleepwear as illustrated by Tina Wilson for Lingerie Briefs

Ugg is fairly new in sleep but they are making a great pitch for owning plush, cozy and naturally hued sleepwear.

Chantelle Lingerie as illustrated by Tina Wilson for Lingerie Briefs

One very special brand is Chantelle. They own modern and sexy with embellishment that is minimal yet striking…and they brilliantly own one size underwear.

Standing for and delivering is something we all can get behind and get better at.  “Stand for nothing, you’ll fall for anything” is one of my favorite quotes. We are at a crossroads, in retail, in lifestyle, and in society. What are you willing to stand for, to “fight” for? What are we waiting for? I am asking myself these questions……it’s time.

Peace, Resistance and Reflection.

Tina


Body Heat

By TINA WILSONNatori & Samantha Chang slips illustrated by Tina Wilson for Lingerie BriefsThe summer heatwave is on and it kicked off recently with a massive power failure that darkened the West Side of Manhattan for more than a few hours. But in true NY fashion we made the best of it, despite the lack of A/C. It got me to thinking about all the hot sticky movies I have fallen in love with over the years and the wardrobes of those suffering from the heat.

Kathleen Turner wore white during most of the film “Body Heat”, perhaps it was to con us and William Hurt into believing she was far too virtuous to have her husband murdered for his fortune. I adore this movie for its memorable humidity, another reason being it was the first time I saw Mickey Rourke, his brief time on screen launched his career. Yes, I know he’s done unimaginable things to his face, but he was once a heartthrob, one day I will write about the time I asked him to dance in a nightclub and we proceeded to dance to 3 songs. Back to Kathleen and her wardrobe, namely the lace slip dress which appears to be Fernando Sanchez, but I am not positive. Today a woman who plans on coming into a lot of money might wear Natori’s Sleek Lace-Bodice Silk Chemise or any of Samantha Chang’s silk slips.Only Hearts tulle slips illustrated by Tina Wilson for Lingerie BriefsRear Window” is one of those movies I will never tire of.  Jimmy Stewart in his pajamas, spy camera in hand, lights out, sweating in his wheel chair is no match romantically for Grace Kelly, who never managed to show any real signs of fatigue. Her negligee scene while totally impractical was lovely. A very modern interpretation would be the Point de sprit “skirt” by Only Hearts, which reminds me of Miss Lonely Hearts and her quest for love through the open window. How many of us New Yorkers have not felt that prying eyes were upon us at one time or another?Wacoal long leg shaper shorts illustrated by Tina Wilson for Lingerie BriefsIt would be negligent to address the subject of heat waves in movies without mentioning Marilyn Monroe in “The Seven Year Itch”. The image of her standing over the subway grate spewing hot air is engrained in all our heads. We only get a glimpse of what she is wearing under the dress but if we were to walk over a hot subway grate today, we would be wise to wear Wacoal’s Air Long-Leg Shaper Shorts.Commando bodysuit illustrated by Tina Wilson for Lingerie Briefs“Bound” is not only about sweat, it’s about blood, gore, and plenty of twists and turns. The sexual tension between men/women and women/women in this mid 90’s film noire is worth combing thru Amazon for. I LOVE this movie, it unnerves me. The scenes with Jennifer Tilly and Gina Gerson plotting their crimes despite the heat, in tank tops and slips is a minimal fashion moment. What they wear is timeless like the tank bodysuit or anything else from Commando.

There are a few honorable mentions in the list of “films that make you sweat” such as:

“In the Heat of the Night” because, well Sidney Poiter is everything.

“Cool Hand Luke” because Paul Newman is beautiful and that car wash scene leaves us all speechless.

“Cat on a Hot Tin Roof” because again Paul Newman is beautiful and he almost drives Maggie the Cat cray cray.Calvin Klein illustrated by Tina Wilson for Lingerie BriefsLast but not least, one of the pivotal movies in American cinema and as relevant now as it was in 1989 is “Do the Right Thing”.  It’s ode to the streets of NYC was powerful and lyrical. If there is one moment free of anxiety in this film, it is the scene of Spike Lee’s “Mookie” sliding the ice cube along Tina’s (Rosie Perez) body to relieve her from the heat. She wasn’t wearing much of anything during that scene, but back then as well as today she could have been wearing a simple black Calvin Klein cotton bikini. I will always remember Rosie’s hypnotic dance to Fight the Power.
In a time when dividing us by race and class even more than we have been is the goal of the government and ignoring the deadly effects of climate change are the norm, perhaps a look back at this film and others can help  spark the heat of resistance…Stay Cool, Stay Woke and Peace.

Tina

 


By TINA WILSON

Prima Donna Ray of Light Bra illustrated by Tina Wilson for Lingerie Briefs

White…we think of purity, faith, innocence, goodness, even virginity when we think of the color white, white is ingrained in all of us to be an inherently positive color, why?

Opaak bodyusit and Empreinte Cassiopee Bra illustrated by Tina Wilson for Lingerie BriefsOpaak & Empreinte

I’ve been researching colors and their meanings and how they make us feel.  Culturally the meanings can shift, in Asian cultures white is a symbol of mourning and loss, in Western cultures the hero wears white and the villain wears black, again I ask why? Who decided that one is evil and the other virtuous?  I have not found the answer, but I must thank the minimalist Japanese designers of the 80’s for insuring that black remains the symbol of elegance and modern simplicity in fashion, 80% of my wardrobe.

Katherine Hamiilton Bra illustrated by Tina Wilson for Lingerie BriefsKatherine Hamilton

White is thought to be the first color ever used in art, some 40,000 years ago when Paleolithic artists used white calcite and chalk to draw, perhaps which was the beginning of white as the symbol of all things good? White contains an equal balance of all the colors of the spectrum, representing both the positive and negative aspects of all colors while it’s “nemesis” black is the total absorption of light. In the battle of white and black in fashion it remains to be seen who will win, the little black dress or the crisp white shirt.

Dolce & Gabbana and Valentino white dresses illustrated by Tina Wilson for Lingerie BriefsDolce & Gabbana and Valentino

Browsing thru a myriad of fashion magazines, and yes, I preferred to use my fingers to touch the paper and to rip the sheets from the spines; I came across a few gorgeous “white” editorials.  LVMH, Gucci, Valentino and other designers seemed to be on a trend of frothy, gossamer, and flowing long white dresses. Some were pleated, some were ruffled, and some were embroidered, and all were too expensive to ever imagine owning. I started to imagine what one might wear underneath them. In intimate apparel 101, we learned that nude must be worn under white; I never quite followed that school of thought.

Dolce & Gabbana white dresses illustrated by Tina Wilson for Lingerie BriefsLVMH

I like white under white especially when it comes to bras, there is almost nothing sexier than a white lace bra worn under a white button down shirt like Prima Donna’s “Ray of Light” underwire bra or Empreinte’s Cassiopee T shirt bra. Opaak’s Graphic Lace padded Sophie Bra and their Gathered Eileen bodysuit would look great under just about anything, as long as you allowed some of it to show, I love the simplicity and the lace is recycled! Ditto that for Katherine Hamilton’s Sophia Ivory lace bra, it’s a little vintage and a little modern.

Layneau Bridal jacket illustrated by Tina Wilson for Lingerie BriefsLayneau

You don’t have to be a bride to wear a beautiful, lacey, sexy white bra, but while we are on the subject of brides, I do believe that Layneau’s Silk Amelie hoodie and tap shorts in ivory are perfect for that bride who favors casual elegance. And for the bride who is into a bit more drama and not into marabou, The Giving Bride’s Christina Cape in Ivory is all that, it is custom ordered and looks to be the worth the wait.

The Giving Bride

I could have kept deliberating on colors, society, influences, and biases but I will keep to the subject of fashion and intimate apparel and end by stating the allure of white dresses, white linen, white towels, white tablecloths, white t-shirts, and white shirts cannot be understated…stay tuned next time for the beauty of Black.

Gucci illustrated by Tina Wilson for Lingerie BriefsGucci

Peace and Resistance.

 


BY TINA WILSON

Fashion Illustrations by Tina Wilson as featured on Lingerie Briefs

Two separate journeys to China in one month, the second time for just one weekend. It sounds more painful that it was. In fact it wasn’t painful at all but a hell of a lot of fun. I shared the first trip in my previous blog which was work related and now I want to let you in on what it’s like to be a judge in a fashion show in another country thousands of miles away, in Shenzhen.

I was invited last year by the SIUF, the Shenzhen International Brand Underwear Fair, to be a judge in their annual intimate apparel fashion show. The show coincides with a big sourcing fair that attracts thousands of people from the local Chinese industry and some from abroad. When I accepted I had no idea what to expect, I did not know how big or small the show would be and had no idea of the professionalism of the show or who the other judges were.

I was quite pleasantly surprised to find out the other judges were people in the top of their fields. Professors of colleges here and in China, international trend and design consultants, magazine editors, television and fashion show directors and producers. Some of the judges I knew and others became new friends. Friends that I would soon be discussing beasts and unicorns with and their relevance as sleepwear.

Fashion Illustrations by Tina Wilson as featured on Lingerie Briefs

The first day I was late, having had my flight delayed until 2 am, so I notified my “handler” that I would miss the opening ceremony to get a few hours sleep and join everyone for the initial round of garment inspection. As I was exiting the Four Seasons Hotel to go across the street to the convention center, I ran into a friend and an owner of factories in China who gave me a hug and said “ I have to run, I am taking some government officials out for breakfast, I’ll see you later”….hmmmm I’m still wondering what that entails.

Fashion Illustrations by Tina Wilson as featured on Lingerie Briefs

I arrived and was led into a room with about 20 mannequins, each dressed in an ensemble. It was quite apparent that each mannequin was designed by very different personalities. I was given instructions from some of the “old pros” that had done this before on how to be nice but firm as we rated everyone. There was raw cut and bonded underwear, which we all loved and seamless sporty looks that were equally great. There were also the more classic corsetry type garments but I found myself drawn more to the non-traditional garments.

Fashion Illustrations by Tina Wilson as featured on Lingerie Briefs

I did not realize that later there would be part 2 where we sat at a podium in front of a huge audience with our faces plastered on a screen with our scores displayed below us…when I found that out I was a bit petrified. And I didn’t find out I had to actually speak until much later.

Fashion Illustrations by Tina Wilson as featured on Lingerie Briefs

The judging was broken up into Intimates and into Sleep and Lounge. Two separate judgings and 2 separate shows.
The lights went down and we were treated to 5 garments per student, it was so different to see the garments up on the stage with their “companions”. It was a very special treat and it was so difficult to give someone a low score, there was so much imagination and courage on display. I admit to being one of the more lenient forgiving judges and apparently that is how a “rookie” judge behaves, giving the more seasoned judges the room to be a bit cruel. I was told the more I judge the harder I will become. I see that happening.

Fashion Illustrations by Tina Wilson as featured on Lingerie Briefs

The intimates were lovely; there were layers of organza in one vignette and gold and black velvet with embroidery in another. The talent was flowing, in some cases the execution and the fabrics needed improvement, but I told myself these are young students and they are doing a fantastic job with little or no experience.

Fashion Illustrations by Tina Wilson as featured on Lingerie Briefs

Sleep and lounge had some really crazy, wild beautiful, brilliantly kooky garments; very little was what I consider “normal”, thank goodness. They shook things up and we were grateful. Even a somewhat traditional kimono was embroidered and quilted and accessorized with the model carrying a pillow, I loved that touch. The winner in lounge category was elected with a bit of recount drama but in the end the “declared” winner was superb and deserving of the prize. The garments were all knife pleated caftans and robes with homage to food, glorious food. Images of hot dogs, burgers, lemons, limes and even potato chips adorned the creations and it was done very well…. Bravo.

Fashion Illustrations by Tina Wilson as featured on Lingerie Briefs

I would like to thank the SIUF for inviting and showing me the wealth of talent in China and letting me experience the great hospitality and the chance to commune with interesting, fun, creative people, I can never get enough of that. I departed Shenzhen approximately 48 hours after I arrived; I believe I spent more time in the air than on the ground.

Peace, Love and Resistance


By TINA WILSON

Fashion Illustrations of Tokyo & Shanghai Fashion Trends by Tina Wilson on Lingerie Briefs

We arrived in Tokyo a few days too early to see the apple blossoms. We did not know this until the day we departed. We came to Tokyo to shop, to look for inspiration and for “signs of life” in design.  What we found, my travelling companion and I was the confirmation that the world is now and I believe, will forever be casual. The juxtaposition of expensive fabrics and laid-back silhouettes and details was everywhere, both on the streets and in the stores. There were two recurring themes in both Tokyo and Shanghai…. casual and storytelling.

Fashion Illustrations of Tokyo & Shanghai Fashion Trends by Tina Wilson on Lingerie Briefs

All around us were sweats and sneakers. In every price point but especially in the higher price range. We touched exquisite fabrics fashioned into the most dressed down silhouettes, in particular an envious green sweat suit made of lace and French terry. I wanted it, I still do, but I know my limitations.

Fashion Illustrations of Tokyo & Shanghai Fashion Trends by Tina Wilson on Lingerie Briefs

Tokyo has the best billboards, the best window signs and the best human placards. There were anecdotes and novellas on bags, on t-shirts, shoes, luggage, socks, and people. On our last day in Tokyo I decided to drag my companion with me to meet some old friends who were living there, we arrived at train station to meet them and they walked us to the coolest neighborhood for sipping coffee and shopping, Meguro-Aobadai. I will make a bee line there the next time I am in Tokyo.

Fashion Illustrations of Tokyo & Shanghai Fashion Trends by Tina Wilson on Lingerie Briefs

One of my favorite “messages” was a homage to David Bowie, in the form of an oversized sweatshirt as his portrait. We found it in Shanghai at the newly opened branch of Galleries Lafayette, a store so new, we were told we could not yet make a purchase because the registers weren’t up and running. That was a good thing because when we arrived in the shoe department, I temporarily lost my mind and I almost bought a pair of Margiela sneakers that had been cut in half, missing the heel and resembling slippers. Sneakers are turning into slippers, sling backs are turning into sneakers, sneakers are turning into high heels. Alas, we live in confusing but times, nothing is as it seems.

Fashion Illustrations of Tokyo & Shanghai Fashion Trends by Tina Wilson on Lingerie Briefs

After dragging myself from the shoes in Galleries Lafayette, we ventured on to Shanghai’s Corso Como, the last time I’d been there was when it first opened and it is as glorious as ever but unlike the rest of the Shanghai establishments, photos are a no-no. I did manage to sneak a shot of a t-shirt folded to look like a hanger, which I tried to purchase. They told me no, it was the last one and they were not willing to part with it. I also managed to get a pic of a wonderful white short sweatsuit with a yellow dragon embroidered on it, love!

Fashion Illustrations of Tokyo & Shanghai Fashion Trends by Tina Wilson on Lingerie Briefs

In between Tokyo and Shanghai, we took the fast train to Nanjing, where I had dinner with another friend who happened to be living there, we went to Cass Tech high school in Detroit together. We had dinner on the 65th floor of my hotel (yikes) and talked about the good old days. She tried to lure me out for “ladies’ night” at the Manhattan lounge where she said they were waiting for us. In retrospect I should have gone, it’s not every day you go to ladies night in Nanjing.

Fashion Illustrations of Tokyo & Shanghai Fashion Trends by Tina Wilson on Lingerie Briefs

It was a trip filled with big sweats, big T’s worn with leggings, big shoes that had big soles and big laces and best of all, big stories . We found an abundance of “big ideas” which I can’t share but what I can share is that if you have a brand or if you are your brand, you must tell your own authentic and distinctive tale. I leave you with a Happy Spring, Happy Easter and Happy Passover…Peace, Love and Resistance.

Fashion Illustrations of Tokyo & Shanghai Fashion Trends by Tina Wilson on Lingerie Briefs


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