What inspired our Peacock Print?
I have always been drawn to Chinoiserie. Butterflies, bees, birds and branches intricately hand-painted on vibrant colours. Such inclusions of nature make a drawing come to life. The origin of this obsession dawned on me when I was at my parents home last summer. After observing the peach coloured curtains and moss green bedspread all boasting such delicate sceneries I realised.. Ah ha! My taste for it had came from my surroundings growing up at a very young age.Alison Chow (Creative Director)
Aurora Yellow Print
Chinoiserie is defined as Fanciful European interpretations of Chinese styles in the design of interiors, furniture, pottery, textiles, and gardens. Perhaps as my mother is Australian and my father Chinese my love of Chinoiserie has something to do with this East meets West element too. Taking such inspiration, I art directed the Peacock Chinoiserie print for our new fashion collection “Birds of a Feather”. So now rather than just surrounding oneself with this artform, we can wear it too! Click to shop this Kaftan now.
The Ming Dynasty was the ruling dynasty of China from 1368 to 1644 and their potters perfected the blue and white porcelain ceramics so that they came to represent the virtuosity of the Chinese potter today. Our blue peacock print was inspired by a similar vase I have at home. The blue is just so spectacular and accentuated by the contrasting crispness of the white.
Our "Birdsong" Silk Dress
Contrasted to the vase shown left, instead of a dragon we decided to use a beautiful peacock with extravagantly long and intricate feathers in this print. We love the embellished white stone belt which matches the extravagance of this garment beautifully. Our exquisite print features on several of our dresses and kaftans in blue, grey-blue and aurora yellow. Click to shop.
From Fashion to Fine China
Piece by piece I have been collecting Jasper Conran’s Chinoisiere Wedgewood China. My favourites are the tea cups with a green or white background and silver edging. Can you imagine eating off anything more beautiful? I can’t.
The Runway Return of Light Denim
I remember getting my first chambray shirt in the 1980’s so was nostalgic about it coming back in the “teenies” (apparently the new name for this decade). I didn't plan on doing any denim for this latest collection so tried to bring it in as a colour on the finest of silk cotton. See right...
The Grey-Blue Hue
So the colour I chose for one of the prints was a grey-blue, inspired by the comfortable light fabric of Chambray. I wanted to give the garments a relaxed, denim feel; like these tops and dresses in sand-wash silk and the finest silk cotton. Click to shop.
Our Love Edition
Welcome to our LOVE edition in celebration of all things romantic and divine. Love makes the world go round and is one of the few things in life that doesn’t cost a thing. In fact, the more you give the more you get of it, so be as generous as you can with it. Whichever way you express love whether it be cooking dinner for someone, lending a hand to a stranger or listening to a friend; sharing the love in lots of little ways makes the world go round.Alison Chow
Favourite Coco Quote
This is one of my favourite quotes, which we printed in the lining of a beautiful cashmere wool Coco Ribbon coat. From the writing flew a hummingbird out of a pretty birdcage all the way up the silk lining. With my love for everything Chinoiserie, you'll be seeing more such elements of surprise in our future fashion to come. For those lucky enough to have bought one of these coats some years ago, I do hope you love yours as much as I love mine.
Coco Ribbon is one part ribbon one part chocolate
Our name, Coco Ribbon, was derived from two favourite things. One of those being my favourite; chocolate. It’s no surprise then that this month we have shipped in my favourite chocolate brand, Prestat, in the most delicious packaging. You can find them in our Coco LOVE gift boxes...
....Prestat was given a Royal Warrant by Her Majesty the Queen and for over 100 years their chocolates have been enjoyed by royalty and nobility, stars of the stage and screen, bishops and abbots. Indulge in the Jewel Box and make sure you keep the boxes to re-use as they are simply too extraordinary to throw away. Click to shop all Gift Boxes.
Sealed witha Kiss
Could these necklaces be any more romantic? They’re the perfect gift to win you major brownie points. The Love Bug necklace ($85) is the one bug any girl would love to catch this Valentines whilst the Envelope necklace ($75) means that she'll get the message without you having to write your own love letter. For other LOVEly gift ideas click to shop!
To Have and to Hold
To the right is my favourite photo from my wedding day. And for the day I searched high and low for a simple ring bearer bowl to carry our rings to the altar. Apart from overly elaborate polyester cushions the task was not an easy one but I finally found “the one” from Texan artist, Caroline Colom Vasquez....
.... This modern-day heirloom made from pure white porcelain is both sweet and chic. Each bowl comes with a soulful messages like “I love you”, “with this ring” or “to have and to hold’ imprinted within and makes a beautiful keepsake to hold jewellery or your favourite little things. To take a peek at what else we have for brides-to-be click here now.
One of my most favourite things is my beloved tweed Chanel bag, spotted from 50 metres away in the window of Chanel in Paris on Rue Cambon. I love dressing it down with my vintage Levi’s jacket (which I bought for £35.00 at Portobello market in London). My thinking is that if you’re going to invest in a bag like this, you might as well get one in a colour that pops… and then team it with something understated.
Life is too short for ordinary; it's something I’ve felt from a young age. One of my earliest memories was as a five year old insisting I wear my red-velvet dress to school when the uniform was an uninspired green-checked frock. I remember thinking, why wouldn’t you?
Our Coco Ribbon philosophy is the same. Why not use your fine china for take-out if you please? As life speeds up lets stop to smell the roses, live well, laugh often and seek inspiration in our every day... because once you look for it, you'll find it everywhere.
In the Mood
Nothing illuminates your ideas more than a mood board. Do them before you embark on anything creative.. decorating your home; planning your wedding or in my case - creating a bespoke print. Choose your topic then tear out pages from magazines that catch your eye; colours, objects, moods. Layer them on a large piece of cardboard and voila - suddenly you have clarity of the direction you should go.
This is one I put together for our fashion print palette. We created two bespoke prints based on the hues – a pretty pastel called Pistachio and Aurora, a show-stopping yellow.
Nothing makes a statement more than a glittering cocktail ring. Here are a few from my prized collection - the Kenneth Jay Lane bumble bee is a favourite as well as the Cabachon ring on top (which you’ll be able to buy here soon). I bought the antique-crystal ring holder on eBay after struggling to find a new one anywhere else. My eBay tip – "Watch” the item and hold off on bidding until the very last minute. Patience is a virtue ladies!
Move over cupcake, the macaroon obsession has stolen your thunder. Have you sampled the Lindt varieties? Rainbow-coloured, drop-dead delicious and immaculately packaged - it's all of our favourite things combined. Try the decadent passion fruit or salted caramel ones. Believe me, your 'buds won't look back.
Quote To Note
I am a quotaholic. I just love them. Inspired quotes make you smile, reflect and sometimes laugh out loud. In a brief sentence, they can give you new insight, put things in perspective or simply uplift you. And this is one of my favourites which comes from the clever book of quotes Keep Calm and Carry On – Good Advice For Hard Times.
"A life spent making mistakes is not only more honourable but more useful than a life spent doing nothing." George Bernard Shaw Click to see book now
Take a peek at our 10-second snippet from our "Birds Of A
Feather" fashion film clip that you'll see early 2011 when the collection hits stores (and
our website). The concept behind the name, you ask? Coco Ribbon is a girl’s
best friend and the beautiful souls who agreed to help out by
taking part are all good friends. We had a lot of fun shooting it on the day, although a generous
amount of Moët was required for Dutch courage!
Our Global Girl’s City Guide
This is your go-to list of all the chicest things to do, see, eat, drink and explore in our favourite cities. We’ve covered New York, London, Paris and Sydney... with more to come soon. So whether you are lucky enough to live in one of these wonderful cities or are planning a visit - do check out our Global Girl’s Guide for some fabulous insider tips!
A Beauty Spa for your Bags (the hand-kind)
As if being able to take you pooch for an organic, luxe grooming, blow drying, mani-ped session at DOGUE wasnt enough, there's now a day spa for your bags! So if you fancy a bit of botox for your Birkin, plumping for your Prada or lift for your Louis Vuitton then check out mybagspa.com for each to come back looking like they've just been to the Bahamas (with a little nip and tuck).
My Favourite Summer Photo
I have this photo framed and sitting on my desk. People often ask if it's me (yeah right!) I spent Christmas in Capetown with a good friend in 2006 and this is a candid shot he took of his girlfriend on the beach one afternoon. It wasn't contrived at all - he was just snapping away. I printed and framed a large copy for him as a thank you for having me stay and loved it so much got one down for me too.
Bikini Confidence Kit
Looking at the next photo of the girl in the red polka dot bikini might inspire (or scare!) you into getting yourself beach-fabulous with this Bikini Confidence Kit. Developed by Mama Mio, this award winning beauty brand is currently exclusive to Coco Ribbon in Australia and so far these kits are proving popular so you'd better be quick!
Look like Gisele...
...from your ankles down at least! I discovered these ultimate summer sandals whilst on holiday in Thailand, although they're actually created by a Japanese designer. If you're over the frumpy flip flop, these super comfy, seriously stylish ruched canvas booty sandals are the answer to your every day of summer. Wear with dresses, jeans, denim shorts - wear them with whatever... just wear them. And for $69 (I know!) you can get them in khaki too. Click to shop these now.
We've done all the hard work for you by putting together ten gorgeous Gift-boxes-to-go in time for Christmas. There is one for every type of girl from the Love Luxe Box to the Jet-set in Style collection. The goodies come beautifully presented in our chocolate boxes with a splash of turquoise inside and our gros grain ribbon as well as a glossy swing card. From £28 click to shop boxes now.
The Handover Hangover Cure
For those of us who experienced the Hong Kong handover from British rule to China in 1996 you may also recall the Hong Kong hangover which came after the solid week of decadent partying that July. From black tie junk soirees, to casino nights at the Mandarin and parties on The Peak it was a glamathon of cocktails, canapes and very little sleep. Here I learnt the art of defying the hangover which I'll now share with you...
Drink half a glass of milk before going out and eat a little something too (toast is good). Put the following items beside your bed: electrolyte rehydrating drink (you can buy the powder at any chemist) half a cucumber and two panadol - drink, eat and swallow all of the latter respectively when you get home.
In the morning use the Partied too much Pack's energy patches, puffy the eyebag slayers and bender mender to get you fresh as a daisy again ready for another night of dancing on tables.
At $19.95 get your Partied too much pack now.
My friend introduced me to this delectable, stylish and tastes like-it's-tricky-but-it's-not cocktail. Simply mix two shots of the vodka in a short or tall glass with ice, depending how strong you like it, top up with dry gingerale, then sprinkle in a few mint leaves for colour and zest. Perfect for picky party guests and Absolut-ly delish!
Have you been Naughty or Nice?
When Dita Von Teese came to Sydney recently she bought almost half of the lingerie at Elegantly Scant's Paddington Store. These silk red knickers come with four removable suspenders. Very Von Teese and very naughty! At $89, click to shop.
If you'd like to take the lead of the Queen of Burlesque but the colour red and suspenders are not your thing, why not try these sophisticated Emerald Green ones instead? Nice. At $46 click to shop.
Since this is our pre-Christmas inspiration edition, I thought it apt that we feature some angels. So here are two... Kristin wearing Coco Ribbon's Sparkles Fly gold sequin dress available soon and my Ottmar Hoerl angel sculpture which usually sits overlooking me on my desk. The sculptured angel looks quite solid and as if it would shatter if it was dropped however it's actually made of a soft thick plastic - something I only discovered after ordering it by mail from Germany. If you'd like us to let you know when this dress arrives please email firstname.lastname@example.org