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March 2015

Quick post: Howdy, partner!

Looky what I found on e-bay!  Hooray for adding another vintage Stila paint can to my collection.

Stila Foley's paint can

Stila Foley's paint can

I don't have anything to say except this was a great find for a mere $11!

And with that, I'm off to Rome.  I'll be back late next week with some more spring collections (and a recap of my trip, of course).  :)


Couture Monday: Jardin de Chanel

I have to admit that the only reason I picked this up is because it's pretty.  I'm not thrilled that Chanel revisited a camellia design, but this was so nice to look at I overlooked the lack of inspiration in the concept. 

Jardin de Chanel blush, spring 2015

Shimmery, multi-layered camellias in a range of lovely soft pink tones - who could resist?

Jardin de Chanel blush, spring 2015

Jardin de Chanel blush, spring 2015

While the blush is gorgeous on its own, I was determined to see if it had anything to do with what was shown on Chanel's spring 2015 runway shows.  There were a few pieces with delicately sewn petals at the ready-to-wear show:

Chanel spring 2015 ready to wear
(images from style.com)

But it was the couture collection though, I think, that ties into the palette the most.  Lagerfeld's vision for the show's setting, a futuristic, somewhat surreal garden made with paper flowers, was "not the nature that we know, because these flowers, the great God forgot to make them, it’s the flowers that we invented."  Meanwhile, the palette is allegedly "inspired by Parisian gardens" so it looks like both the fashion and beauty departments at Chanel had gardens on the brain this season.

Chanel spring 2015 couture

Chanel spring 2015 couture

While I didn't spot any camellias, I did think the petals on these two dresses are reminiscent of the layering of the camellia petals on the palette.

Chanel spring 2015 couture

Chanel-couture-spring-2015-detail

Chanel-spring-2015-couture-detail
(images from style.com)

Overall, while I'm not so impressed that Chanel served up another camellia, especially when there was so much floral inspiration to draw from in this season's couture line, this blush was worthy enough of the Makeup Museum.  And it looks like we have yet another camellia design coming up in the Chanel's summer collection, so perhaps eventually I can do a Chanel garden show of my own featuring only camellias. 

What do you think? 


Curator's Corner, 3/22/2015

CC logoLinks from the past few weeks, plus a personal update.

- Marie Claire provides a history of eyelash trends, while Into the Gloss highlights the anti-aging treatments of some of the most powerful women in history.

 - A beauty whodunnit:  someone stole 400 (!) bottles of nail polish from a Brooklyn salon.  What could possibly be the motivation for that?  Used nail polish is not worth much.

- I'm betting this new burger-scented cologne is an elaborate April Fool's joke by Burger King...at least, I really hope it is.

- As someone who hates needles I can't see myself  jumping on the beauty IV bandwagon anytime soon.

- This post is a few weeks old but I'm still laughing - check out this ridiculous '70s makeup protector.  On a similar note, Gio at Beautiful with Brains tells us that the use of fire screens to prevent makeup from melting is purely a myth

- Which skincare treatment would you try:  a breast milk facial, foreskin cells, or a placenta mask?  None of the above for me, thanks.

- In creepy-cool news, a company in Japan is working on 3D printing of human tissue.  Besides the obvious medical applications, 3D printing of human tissue could make animal testing for cosmetics obsolete. 

- Speaking of Japan, the latest beauty craze there is, in my opinion, even more unappealing than the "no makeup" look.  Then again, every time I attempt a more natural look I appear ill, so this new trend wouldn't be too much of a stretch for some of us.

- For you perfume junkies, Harrod's is launching a "fragrance garden" at the Royal Horticultural Chelsea Society Flower Show.  

- Reviews:  A while ago I vowed to include links to reviews of new products in every Curator's Corner, since that's what brings in the most blog traffic (sadly, not a lot of people come here to read the actual museum-y content).  I've come to the realization that this is an exercise in futility.  I will still attempt to include reviews, but certainly not on a regular basis.

The random:

- Watch Sleater-Kinney talk about feminism with SNL's Vanessa Bayer (a.k.a. media coach Janessa Slater).  Hilarious.  Also, Carrie Brownstein's memoir is due in October!

- Broad City's costume designer shares her favorite fashion moments from season 2.

- In things that make me feel old/'90s nostalgia, both Elastica's self-titled first album and Radiohead's The Bends both turned 20 on March 16th.

- Um, really?  Another Kickstarter project that began as a joke earned over $2,000 worth of financial support.  At least though they're putting the "museum" in their home, which is what I do - proof that I'm not completely insane.  And I have to admit it's a great topic, '90s nut that I am.

- More and more museums are prohibiting selfie sticks.  I covered the topic of museum photography previously and I'm still on the side of allowing photography, but I definitely would ban selfie sticks.

- This story made me tear up.

- And finally, a personal update:  As you can tell from the sporadic posting I'm still not feeling great.  The complete lack of any cardio activity has taken a severe toll on both my physical and mental well-being.  Physical therapy has been a nightmare in that I can't seem to find a practice that both takes my insurance and is a good fit for me, so I'm making no headway in getting this injury healed for good, and I'm bound to miss the same races I did last year.  The eye inflammation also refuses to budge despite 4 rounds of various prescription drops, and it looks like I'm going to have to stop using my precious Latisse since the doctor seems to think that's the cause of the reaction rather than my contacts.  In the meantime I still can't wear my contacts regularly due to the chronic irritation which is also driving me insane.  And I'm not looking forward to having to deal with wearing mascara every day now, which is what's going to happen upon ceasing usage of Latisse.  As I said before, I'm grateful none of these things are fatal but I've been dealing with them for the better part of a year, and I'm SICK of it. I'm just so defeated and fed up with everything I'm not even excited for spring, or the trip to Rome the husband and I have coming up in a few days.  :(

Anyway, if you made it this far, thank you.  I'm off to get some cheese to go with my whine.


Get cherubic cheeks with Guerlain's Angelic Radiance Météorites

I'm still here...just been pretty sad and work's been kicking my ass.  The snow we had yesterday on the first day of spring was particularly cruel and depressing.  So today I'm hoping to perk myself up a bit by posting about more spring goodies. 

I thought this past holiday season was the peak of angel-themed items, but Guerlain's Angelic Radiance Météorites proved me wrong.  The design is a departure from previous Météorites as they've got a delicate paper lid, and instead of a pattern there's a scene of two cherubs frolicking among some foliage.  Usually I like a sturdier lid since paper is more prone to damage long-term, but in this case I think it works well combined with the illustration and the soft pink tones.  It also makes me a little hungry - I think a larger version of the box would be perfect for macaron packaging.  :)

Guerlain spring 2015 Météorites

Guerlain spring 2015 Météorites

Guerlain spring 2015 Météorites

I've written about cherubs before and gave some examples of them in Renaissance art, but the ornate decorations on the Guerlain box look more like they were inspired by 17th century art rather than the Renaissance.  I poked around online to see if I could find anything similar and came across the work of engraver Jean Lepautre (1618-1682), whose work, I think, is reminiscent of the Guerlain container.   This site has a concise description of Lepautre:  "[He] has been described as the most important ornament engraver of the 17th century. His prodigious output extended to more than 2000 prints, mostly from his own original designs.  He was not only the originator of the grandiose Louis XIV style but was also responsible for disseminating and popularizing its full lavish repertoire throughout Europe. Le Pautre's often over-elaborate and flamboyant designs frequently included arabesques, grotesques and cartouches, together with elements from classical mythology.  His diverse range of subject matter, influenced by his carpentry/joinery architectural background, included: friezes, wallpaper, alcoves, fireplaces, furniture, murals, ceiling mouldings, fountains and grottoes."

In 1751 Charles-Antoine Jombert produced a 3-volume series of Lepautre's work, and astonishingly enough, the University of Heidelberg digitized the entire thing and made it available to the public. I went through each image and picked out what I thought most resembled the Météorites case.

Work by 17th century ornament engraver Jean Lepautre

Work by 17th century ornamental engraver Jean Lepautre

Work by 17th century ornament engraver Jean Lepautre

Work by 17th century ornament engraver Jean Lepautre

Work by 17th century ornamental engraver Jean Lepautre

Admittedly I chose this one not just because of the angels but because there seems to be mermaid angels in the bottom panel!

Work by 17th century ornamental engraver Jean Lepautre

I tried to get some more close-up images so you could see the similarities between these engravings and the Guerlain box - the etch marks, the lines of the foliage, even the cherubs' hair are nearly the same.

Work by 17th century ornamental engraver Jean Lepautre

Work by 17th century ornamental engraver Jean Lepautre

Work by 17th century ornamental engraver Jean Lepautre
(images from digi.ub.uni-heidelberg.de)

I wonder whether this is just a coincidence or if the design team at Guerlain had been looking at Lepautre.  I'm also curious as to why they decided to do a scene featuring angels as I didn't think cherubs were a Guerlain motif.  As it turns out, angels appeared on a Guerlain powder container from 1918.  The Poudre aux Ballons were scented with various Guerlain fragrances.  (For the record, this is officially on my wishlist - I hope I can track one down!  I also just remembered that I've come across the Poudre aux Ballons before.)

Guerlain Poudre aux Ballons, 1918

Guerlain Poudre aux Ballons
(images from guerlainperfumes.blogspot.com)

You may recall that balloons were used in last year's spring promo image (more about that in a future post.) 

Anyway, while I can't say definitively that Guerlain's latest release is in any way inspired by 17th century ornament engravings, it at least caused me to discover an artist that I wouldn't have known about otherwise.  And I really like the Météorites packaging - so feminine and springy and French.  It may not be as sleek and sophisticated, as, say, the Impériale Météorites (holiday 2009) or the 2012 Pucci collection, but I think it's a refreshing change from what they normally do.

What do you think? 


Brrr! Chantecaille's wintry spring palette

I have no idea why Chantecaille would release a glacier-themed palette for spring, but I guess it's appropriate given that we're still getting snow in early March.  Ugh!  I also was not thrilled with the design.  While it's worthy of my collection, I still feel like Chantecaille could have done so much more.  I would have loved to see a jaw-droppingly detailed alpine scene captured in a highlighting/eye shadow powder, similar to these but in a shimmery white, silver, blue and taupe color scheme.  Anyway, it's the usual spiel - you buy the palette and Chantecaille donates 5% of the proceeds to a charity.  This time the money will go to the Extreme Ice Survey.  (The name makes me think of a certain faux energy drink...it's not a regular ice survey, it's an EXTREEEEEEEME ice survey!  To the MAAAXXXX!)

I enlisted the help of Makeup Museum staff member Ugly Yeti to showcase this eye shadow trio - as you can imagine, he was quite fond of it since it reminds him of his natural habitat. 

Ugly-Yeti-with-Chantecaille

Chantecaille Glacier eye shade trio - spring 2015

The big guy wanted to make sure you saw the pretty, shimmery mountains on the inside of the palette.

Ugly Yeti with Chantecaille

Chantecaille Glacier eye shade trio - spring 2015

Chantecaille's website has some breathtaking photos of glaciers, but if you want more there's also an exhibition of photos and paintings entitled "Vanishing Ice:  Alpine and Polar Landscapes in Art, 1775-2012" at the McMichael Canadian Art Collection currently.

What do you think of this trio?  I'm off to make some hot chocolate for Ugly Yeti...as much as he loves the snow, I think he likes my homemade hot chocolate even more.  :)