Archive for November, 2017


The classic bob gets an update. 

Who doesn’t love a Sassoon cut? Sharp and precise, any woman looks tres chic after a visit to a Sassoon Salon.

In the 1960s British hairstylist Vidal Sassoon ushered in a new approach to hair-styling moving women away from “cut and set” to “wash and wear.” Inspired by European architecture, Sassoon played with angular shaping, creating new bobs and pixie cuts. Clients such as fashion designer Mary Quant and actress Mia Farrow praised the coifs and it wasn’t long before Sassoon opened salons in the UK and America, developing a unique styling technique.

The iconic styling continues. Today trained Sassoon stylists build on the original ideas to create modern new looks.

OverDressedforLife is excited to post this Q&A with Michael Forrey, Senior Creative Director at Sassoon Salon San Francisco and Nathan Booth, Color Director at Sassoon Salon San Francisco.


New style selection from the Mondaine line. 

Please describe Sassoon’s new Mondaine line of cuts? 

For MONDAINE, the Sassoon house codes of line, graduation and disconnection are used to create the feel of hair in motion. Fronts are long and loose, layered through from the crown creating versatile cuts that can be worn in different ways. Colours are multi-tonal, adding depth and shine to solid shapes, others concealed and convertible, designed to work with the parting of the hair to reveal slight-of-hand shades on the left or the right. Michael Forrey

The 1920s bob is an option – how have you updated the look? 

We have updated the look by using disconnection— incorporating hidden layers within the hair that create movement, giving the shape a much leaner silhouette. Classically those shapes could sit very heavy on the face shape and only be appropriate for curtain textures. Although it is still about suitability, these panels of disconnection also create more versatility in the style. For example, if you part the hair one way you get more of a one length feel, while parted the other you get a very layered effect. What makes it classic looking or twenties is the length and over all balance. Michael Forrey

You say Mondaine is in keeping with the move toward anti-fashion – in what way?

The anti-fashion movement is a celebration of individuality and authenticity. To make an anti-fashion statement within hair design, each individual must emphasize what makes them unique and this is the same for Sassoon. His founding approach to hair design was innovative. Today, we still follow his principles to ensure each client receives an entirely bespoke hair design experience. Michael Forrey

You also say that you have been inspired by Christobel Balenciaga – please explain. 

Cristobal Balenciaga who, just like Vidal Sassoon, was obsessed with the different ways material could be cut and constructed. Balenciaga cut sleeves in a way that would show an elegant display of wrist and hands. Vidal cut lines in hair that perfectly accentuated his clients’ best features. We saw a natural link between Balenciaga’s austere architectural shapes and bold color combinations and Vidal Sassoon’s obsession with the cut and construction of materials and this link was the inspiration behind the styling of the MONDAINE Salon Collection. Michael Forrey

Sassoon is known for fabulously straight styles but what if you have wavy hair and want to keep it, can that be accommodated? 

 Yes! Absolutely! That’s the biggest misconception of Sassoon. We have talented stylists that are trained to work with all natural hair textures — including curly and afro. Curly and afro textures have played a huge part in our collections and throughout our history. Michael Forrey

I love that copper red – tell us about color choices and how they work with the new cuts. 

Colors are multi-tonal and placed in a way that works with the hair’s parting. The palette of colors currently inspiring our looks are made up of rich coppers accented with softer gold tones or bold tangerines. Darker cool browns have highlights of caramels and deep navy blues. On the lighter side, natural blondes are paired with crisp white, iridescent lavenders and subtle golden blonde tones. The key is to have the placement work within the shape of the cut. It’s about precise weaving and slicing techniques. Nathan Booth

What might a new client to Sassoon expect at her first appointment?

A new client can expect a detailed consultation with our highly skilled creative cutters and color specialists that will advise the client on a personalized look to suit their lifestyle and complement their individuality. We are all about creating a look for the individual by working with their natural shape, balance and texture. The release of our two seasonal hair collections each year ensures that our team is at the forefront in hair trends to provide a quality of work for all of our clients. Michael Forrey

A big thank you to Michael and Nathan.

Ladies. looking for a new do for the holidays? Want to start 2018 afresh? How about a new twist to the classic bob? (I ask myself!)

Give Sassoon in San Francisco a try. Consultations are complementary. Sassoon Salon, 359 Sutter Street.

For the holidays Sassoon Salon is offering Davines Holiday Gift Boxes which include a shampoo, conditioner and you receive a full size bottle of Oi Milk ($32 value).

Follow Sassoon Salon on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/sassoonsalonnorthamerica/



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Divan Japonais by Toulouse-Lautrec, 1893. 

You must understand that the accessories are an integral part of the picture. 

Henri De Toulouse-Lautrec (1864-1901), French artist.

Yes! Hats! Gloves! Scarves! Jewelry! Accessories complete the picture, complete the look. A jaunty hat? That’s panache. A pair of gloves in red or … purple? How daring. An antique ring on every finger? What pizzazz!

We love it all and all of it makes for excellent holiday gifts. Particularly vintage and handmade.

Let the holidays begin with style.


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woa-gabriela-perezetti-main-smallMy whole family used to use this seamstress, Tota, … growing up in Uruguay there were no fancy stores around – the nicest thing you could do was get European fabrics and have things made … We wouldn’t buy a lot but for each important stage of life or big event we’d have something made. There’s a suit from my mother, this olive wool skirtsuit with a blazer that has, like, a military seal and her initials embroidered on the pocket … I always loved the whole outfit, so much so that when we launched the first collection, I had that suit in it. It’s always been a reference to quality materials made to last …

Gabriela Hearst, women’s fashion designer. Quote from Elle magazine, October 2017.

I am a big fan of custom made clothing. I have an expanding wardrobe of fashions made just for me from dresses, to blouses, to a beautiful 1920s inspired coat.

It’s pure pleasure to don perfectly fitted clothing for which you have chosen the design and fabrics. Each piece is unique, well made, and it feels extra good to have supported local seamstresses/designers.

Also, I can relate to Ms. Hearst’s fondness for her mother’s wardrobe. What is it about our mother’s clothing from our childhoods? I too have memories of what my mother wore – specific images that I like to revisit. I even have some of the vintage pieces right out of her closet. Many of them special occasion outfits, but it’s the everyday pieces that I’m drawn to. The ones I saw all the time – the tweed skirts and Oxford shirts; slacks and desert boots. The outfits that identified a mom as my Mom.

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I’m taking another class in the San Francisco City College Fashion Department – this semester it’s Textile Analysis, which I’m really enjoying. So that puts me in the city once a week and taking BART.

About a month ago when the weather was still a little warm, I popped onto the train going home and settled in (standing). As usual I started looking around. At first this women didn’t really catch my eye but after a couple of perusals, I stopped on her.

I noticed the details of her sartorial choices and how it all worked together.

First, you can’t really see in the photo, but her slacks are cuffed. A nice detail, and one that is a perfect contrast with the Berks. You don’t expect to see Birkenstocks with tailored slacks. Also note that the hem is just a tad short. Much longer would look sloppy. Beyond that the shoes are in white. If you’ve got to wear Berks outside the house, white in smooth leather takes away the hippie vibe and perhaps even makes the look, in its way,  chic.

She tied in the white Berks with her white trendy longish cardigan. The slub knit yarn offers some texture. She added a bit of subtle color with a lightweight teal sweater (cotton/rayon?) and a nicely wrapped scarf in the colors of autumn. I love the quilted handbag in black (more texture).

No we’re not talking high fashion here but it’s her own simple style and I think it looks great!

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Danielle-Steel-QuotesStyle simply IS. You can’t buy it. You can’t pay people to give it to you, and you cannot fake it. You have it or you don’t. Truly stylish, drop dead chic women have style at 15 or 97. It really is ageless … The trend today of being dressed “by someone” makes most women appear to be wearing someone else’s looks, or as if they’ve borrowed their clothes … Women need to be braver about wearing their own style and looks, even if they make some mistakes. The mistakes can be cool too!

Danielle Steel, romance novelist and San Francisco socialite. This quote was taken from an essay Ms. Steel wrote for Harper’s Bazaar (November 2017).

I spotted Ms. Steel one time when I was on assignment covering the reopening of the Chanel store on Maiden Lane in San Francisco. She was sporting a fur coat and seemingly having fun trying on shoes.

As for having style, well, sure some women (and men) just have a sense for what is stylish but I don’t know that one who perhaps doesn’t have a natural affinity can’t figure it out. If someone really wants to pay attention and work on it, they too can have style. Why not? And that’s where “being dressed by someone” can help. A stylist acts as a guide and gets their client on the right track. It’s true you can’t buy style and no one can give it to you. It has to come from within, so to speak. But it is something that can develop. I think it’s the process of developing and growing that makes fashion fun.

Speaking of style of a different sort, Ms. Steel evidently still types her manuscripts on a typewriter. HB published her original typed version complete with cross outs and handwritten edits. Now that’s true (not fake) STYLE.


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Hanbok, reproduced from an 18th century painting.

Three years in the making, Couture Korea is the first major exhibition of Korean fashion in the United States and exclusive to San Francisco’s Asian Art Museum. On now through February 4, 2018 this fashion exhibit explores traditional Korean clothing from the Joseon Dynasty (1392-1910) to the present. Included are reproductions and reinterpretations of traditional clothing as well as original modern works by top Korean designers.

The 120-piece exhibit covers three galleries starting with a look at tradition. What is Hanbok is the first gallery where we learn that hanbok is traditional clothing for men and women during the Joseon Dynasty, when modesty was the fashion of the day. For women the look was a high full skirt called a chima, paired with a longer blouse called jeogori, which would fit loose or tight. (The originators of layering.) Men sported a loose top, pants and a robe. Fabrics such as silk organza were used.


Jin Teok’s reinterpreted  bridal robe.

Between East and West comes next and features designs by Jin Teok, including a video of a recent fashion show and a reinterpreted hwarot (bridal robe) combining  embroidered silk fabric with denim. Also in this gallery are pieces by Chanel’s Karl Lagerfeld from his Korean inspired 2016 Cruise collection, which premiered in Seoul.

My favorite is the third and final gallery. From Seoul to San Francisco is all about modern Korean fashion. Featured are two trendsetting designers Im Seonoc and Jung Misun. Each woman is inspired by traditional Korean clothing but with an understanding of modern needs and desires.


A new twist on tradition by Jung Misun.

A video interview with the two explains their different approaches. Jung Misun says that while she’s inspired by traditional silhouettes, the fabrics are too delicate and she finds that modern women want more comfort and ease. “If someone were to ask me to wear hanbok and I were to think of an uncomfortable aspect of it – it would be the fabric … Therefore I replaced the delicate fabrics of hanbok with everyday fabrics, such as knits and wool.”


South Korean fashion designer Im Seonoc.

Im Seonoc is a sustainable designer dedicated to zero waste in her clothing production. She uses only neoprene (usually used for wetsuits), which creates a nice clear cut. Any leftover scraps are incorporated elsewhere in her designs. Instead of stitching she glues or uses high-pressure bonding for seams. Speaking with Ms. Seonoc, she told me she’s created her own neoprene – something lighter and even easier to work with.

There is something completely unique about Korean style. Simple, elegant, refined and hard to capture, which makes it ultra chic. Couture Korea offers a rare opportunity to learn about traditional and modern Korean fashions and how they connect.

It’s a must-see! I also recommend an upcoming panel of fashionables on November 19th, 1-2:30. Moderated by the San Francisco Chronicle style reporter, Tony Bravo the panel will include fashion trendsetters and designers discussing what inspires them. This panel is part of K-Fashion Bash – a day of events celebrating Korean pop culture.

What fun!

Click here for more information. 


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Jin Teok with her daughter Ro Sungun at the Asian Art Museum.

American fashion is very artistic and at the same time very wearable and good for the market, as well as the look. 

Jin Teok, South Korean fashion designer.

I had the pleasure of meeting Ms. Teok and her daughter at the press preview of Couture Korea, the new exhibit on now at the Asian Art Museum in San Francisco. Her fashions are included in this exhibit of modern and re-imaginings of traditional Korean clothing. I asked Ms. Teok her impression of American fashion.

Known for her reconstruction of the classic white shirt, Ms. Teok has been designing for over fifty years. She was the only Korean designer to be included among the top 500 world fashion icons in the UK publication, The Fashion Book (Phaidon, 1998).

Watch for more about Jin Teok and my review of Couture Korea coming out later this week on OverDressedforLife.




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