Beautiful Invitations by Mary Katrantzou

My avid readers know how much I love MARY KATRANTZOU and that I have collected her designs starting from her first season. This summer, she has joined forces with PAPERLESS POST to create some beautiful invitations that are matching many dresses I have.

Cowboys and Princesses Invitation

Her clothes use intricate digital prints as transformative elements of style—and her eye for pattern is a natural fit for elegant party invitations that transcend the envelope.

Click HERE to see the full selection that is available at PAPERLESS POST. Inviting your friends has never been so much fun…

Left: Powder Gun Dress (with Mary Katrantzou) – Right: Sprinter Fritz Invitation

Left: Powdy Dress – Right: Powdy Invitation

Left: Rodizio Clutch – Right: Rodizio Invitation

Left: Expandit Dress – Right: Expandit Invitation

Left: Showmanship Dark Rush Dress – Right: Star Heart Invitation

Left: Harp Hazard Dress – Right: Strip Valley Invitation

LoL, Sandra

Photos: © Sandra Bauknecht and via Paperless Post

Fashion Before and In 100 Years

Fashion 100 Years

This week’s publication about the project «100 YEARS: THE MOVIE YOU WILL NEVER SEE» that will be released in November 2115 has inspired me to today’s post.

How will fashion probably be in 100 years? Will there be an innovation that will revolutionize the future that we don’t know about yet? Will women rule this world?

100 Years Louis XIIIThe movie with John Malkovich in the leading role was inspired by the legacy of hundred years of craftsmanship it takes to create LOUIS XIII Cognac.

Before thinking of 2115, let’s move back in time 100 years to the year 1915.

HobbleSkirtPostcardThe Hobble Skirt (1911) – the speed-limit skirt

from a 1915 Pictoral Review1915 Pictoral Review

In 1915, women’s fashion was affected by the war in Europe in many ways, necessity was more important than style. The need to be able to move faster as well as the new independence of women also asked for a looser, more comfortable models. The rich opulence that the century had started with slowly disappeared. Hobble skirts that were widest at the hips and very narrow at the ankle transformed from floor length into styles above the ankle that opened up at the bottom, allowing for freer movement.

Theda Bara in the 1915 film SinTheda Bara in the 1915 film «Sin»

In 1915, makeup started to become more popular, literally, as the term itself was considered vulgar, “cosmetics” was the more common expression but applying beauty products was still nothing chic and done only by people in the theater or of dubious reputation and not something for the high society.

Rubinstein 5th avenue salonRubinstein’s Fifth Avenue Salon

A big milestone for the beauty industry took actually place in 1915, when two major forces opened salons on Fifth Avenue — Elizabeth Arden and Helena Rubenstein. By then, Max Factor, who was going to invent the first lipstick just a bit later had already perfected his first cosmetic product, the «pancake makeup» for sale. And 1915 marked another milestone, Tom Lyle Williams, who was only 19 at that time, founded one of today’s most successful beauty giants: The Maybelline Company.

max factor 1915Max Factor in 1915

Personally speaking, when I started to research about what happened one hundred years ago in fashion and beauty, I was utterly impressed about how much we still profit from those inventions and changes in the world. I learnt about all of that during my fashion design studies, but most of the knowledge fades away…

Chanel Store BiarritzChanel’s Biarritz store 1915

… but one designer that has always interested me the most, Coco Chanel, started to really influence the fashion world in the mid 1910’s. With her reputation firmly established, she opened her first couture house in Biarritz, France in 1915, followed only three years later by the opening of the famous 31, rue Cambon store in Paris.

coco_chanel_Biarritz2Just after 1915, it became popular to wear a knitted sweater that pulled over the head (yes, a pullover!), with long sleeves, belted at the hip that left a no discernible waist as seen here at Gabrielle “Coco” Chanel in Biarritz around 1920.

Just try to imagine the world now 100 years later if Coco Chanel had never been born, we might still be wearing corsets. This amazing woman redefined womanhood in fashion and gave us freedom. She gave us pants, the little black dress, costume jewelry and elegance in general.


“I don’t understand how a woman can leave the house without fixing herself up a little – if only out of politeness. And then, you never know, maybe that’s the day she has a date with destiny. And it’s best to be as pretty as possible for destiny.” Gabrielle Coco Chanel

If we start to think forward now, who might be the designer pioneer of today about whom the world in 2115 will still be speaking? And especially how will fashion change?

 Personally speaking, for me it is very interesting to see that in 2015 trends are fading, everything is possible and that we are reviving previous eras constantly. There is nothing really new.

Today, we are constantly challenged by the limitation of our resources on our planet. Returning to nature will and has to play an important factor. Organic fabrics will mostly be extremely common in 2115. The improvement of technology makes everything from impossible to possible.

slide_223561_923452_freeAlready very innovative in 2015: Studio Roosegarde has developped a fabric that undresses you. ‘Intimacy‘ is a curious material made from opaque e-foils which turn transparent during personal encounters thanks to a sensitivity to the wearers heart rate.

If I imagine the world in fashion in 100 years, I could think of very innovative materials that will show their impact as they might not stain anymore and have a self-cleaning effect. In an Huffington Post article from 2012, Mingce Long and Deyong Wu from Donghua University are mentioned “who have developed a fabric which could see washing machines replaced by a stint in the sun. The fabric makes use of a titanium dioxide and nitrogen coating which decomposes stains and kills microbes using light from the visible spectrum.”


UK-based BioCouture, the world’s first biocreative design consultancy, is already investigating the use of microbial-cellulose to produce lab-grown clothing. New materials that could be used in clothing production might include fibers that can produce heat in winter and coolness in summer, so that you might be able to wear shorts in the cold season. Probably to go one step further and imagine the beauty industry, there might be clothes that have the ability to constantly speed up your metabolism so that just by wearing them you are loosing weight or have a treatment included that can cure skin problems or fight aging. That is a nice idea, don’t you think?

There might be machines in which we put our faces inside in the morning that will apply makeup by themselves. I would miss the fun of putting on my favorite beauty products in the morning though, but I know a gazillion of my girlfriends who would be in heaven with a machine like that.

But who could be the Coco Chanel of today, meaning a designer that will be remembered for his or her changes?

Sandra Bauknecht-Stella McCartneyStella McCartney with me

First to my mind came Stella McCartney who helped to pioneer the vegan leather movement and made environmentally-conscious fashion stylish.

Sandra Bauknecht with Mary Katrantzou at Dinner at BlakesMary Katrantzou with me

Another designer I thought of is my beloved Mary Katrantzou who made digital prints popular. As you might now printing uses a lot of energy but “with digital printing, prints are directly applied to fabrics with printers, reducing water usage by 95 percent, energy reduction of 75 percent, and minimizing textile waste“*.

Coco Chanel, Stella McCartney, Mary Katrantzou, all women that have changed our thinking. Women are key to improving the well-being of children and achieving lasting change in society. We have the power to make this world a better place. And I am sure that in 100 years, Mr. Georges Clot, a former LOUIS XIII Cellar Master, who used to say: “When you discover LOUIS XIII, you become a different man“, would have said:”… you become a different woman.”

LoL, Sandra

Photos: Courtesy of LOUIS XIII, © Sandra Bauknecht, via Huffington Post, New York Sun, © Chanel*via gbnews

Mary Katrantzou S/S 2014 – So Amazing

Mary Katrantzou S:S 2014

Personally speaking, there hasn’t been one collection, Mary Katrantzou hasn’t amazed me with. This season has been no different. For the motif mistress, footwear prints walk a fine line between fashion and art. For S/S 2014, she was inspired by every woman’s love for shoes for her signature digital prints.

The collection’s evening looks were absolutely divine, and heavenly embroidered by the House of Lesage in Paris with which Mary had been working before already. Think ruffles, empire and baby doll cuts. Nothing for the shy! I am loving it!


LoL, Sandra










Photos: Courtesy of Mary Katrantzou,, © Getty Images

Best of New York Fashion Week S/S 2013

Best of NYFashion Week S:S2013

While we are getting our wardrobe ready for the upcoming winter, designers are already showing their S/S 2013 collections. Here is a summary of the most important collections and trends seen at New York Fashion Week. Stay tuned as a detailed report from London, Milan and Paris will follow soon.

In New York, stripes were having a moment this S/S 2013 season. From Marc Jacobs, to Tommy Hilfiger and Michael Kors, the American majors are getting in line to consider a fashionable life behind bars. Floral patterns and digital prints stay for the next summer, the best ones were seen at Altuzarra and Thakoon. Layering is all about getting this slouchy chic style. My favourite: Prabal Gurung. A must for summer is a pair of strappy, knee-high summer boots, such as spotted at Proenza Schouler.

Enjoy my little runway reviews!

LoL, Sandra

Altuzarra S:S 2013

Joseph Altuzarra came up with a clever way to transform a jacket into a more airy piece by using vents for your arms like a cape, so that the jacket stays in place on your shoulders, even so it comes with sleeves. “It’s how editors wear their coats,” he said of the genesis of the idea to the US Vogue. The draped dresses, the interesting prints and the knee-high Gianvito Rossi for Altuzarra sandals make it my favourite NYFW runway collection.

Oscar de la Renta S:S 2013

I love this Oscar de la Renta collection. Punk hair, combined with a ’50s silhouette and pop colors. So much fun and sophistication!

Victoria Beckham S:S 2013

After four years in business, Victoria Beckham‘s designs have evolved. The iconic sheath dresses have got company, separates and suits are now part of her collection as well.

Rodarte S:S 2013

Stylists, editors and bloggers have been buzzing about Rodarte continuously. The eccentric designs of the Mulleavy sisters are truly outstanding. For the next season, the précis described Kate’s and Laura’s inspiration as “medieval and fantasy role-playing games”. Please reserve one of those fashionable armors for me!

Alexander Wang S:S 2013

Alexander Wang‘s runway show for S/S 2013 was ultra-strong with cut-out dresses and footwear to die for. The audience was kindly asked to remain from flash photography which was wishful thinking because when the lights were dimmed down to reveal white looks glowing in an ecclectic shade of yellow, people took their cameras to share this magic moment.

Proenza Schouler S:S 2013

Proenza Schouler‘s Jack McCullough and Lazaro Hernandez have a young and visionary approach to fashion. This season, they have experimented with leather and print. Very interesting, you have to study the outfit to see all the innovative details.

Ralph Lauren S:S 2013

Viva Espagña! For Ralph Lauren, the next season is all about Matador suits, serapes, ruffles and fringes. Especially, his gowns will be loved by celebrities all around the globe. Olé, fashionistas!

Michael Kors S:S 2013-2

Very preppy, lots of stripes and the four basic colours, this was Michael Kors‘ recipe for his S/S 2013 collection. A subtle ’60s vibe and clean tailoring finished the sophisticated looks. Not new, but very wearable and very American.

TommyHilfiger S:s 2013

Another true prep is, of course, Tommy Hilfiger, who celebrated stripes with a collegiate beat in the all-American shades of red, blue and white. A must for those who are spending their summers in the Hamptons.

Marc Jacobs S:S 2013-2

The bold spirit that Marc Jacobs had been pushing for fall, has transformed into a more calm and artistic vibe. Lots of black and white stripes and wearable cuts, a wind of change is blowing at the American designer, at least for this season.

Thakoon S:S 2013

Thakoon Panichgul has been inspired obviously by an architectural Japanese feeling. Beautiful blooming floral designs and bird prints dominated this feminine collection. So pretty!

Prabal Gurung S:S 2013

This season, Prabal Gurung channeled Indian sculptor Anish Kapoor. Layering was a key element, such as dresses worn over pants. The Kapoor inspiration was also evident in the extraordinary prints and delicate sheer fabrics.


It was Sophia Kokosalaki‘s last collection for Diesel Black Gold, and probably her best. I truly like this 90’s aesthetic, cool, contemporary with an interesting twist. Her successor, Andreas Melbostad, the former Phi designer, is now in charge to bring the label to the next level.

Rag & Bone S:S2013

David Neville and Marcus Wainwright, the designer duo behind Rag & Bone, showed their refreshing collection at New York’s dramatical and beautiful old US Post Office building, a gorgeous backdrop. The inspiration: A desert traveler.

Reed Krakoff S:S 2013

Reed Krakoff is the new king of intellectual minimalism with a very sexy twist. Strong and sportif, he used a colour palette of nudes, browns and blacks. Those see-through deconstructed dresses will be seen on many editors, for sure.

Edun S:S 2013-2

Edun, the beloved fashion label, run by Irish rocker Bono and his wife Ali Hewson, is based on the commitment to encourage trade in Africa. For S/S 2013 the collection is about the contrasting worlds of the Edun girl – intimate and extroverted, utilitarian and outerworldly.

Marchesa S:S 2013

Personally speaking, the most stunning evening and bridal wear for S/S 2013 is designed by Marchesa‘s Georgina Chapman and Karen Craig. Last week, they announced that they had designed Blake Lively’s wedding gown and her bridesmaids’ dresses. For summer, they take their fans on a stunning journey through India by way of maharani’s wardrobe with the bridal motif certainly at the forefront.

Zac Posen S:S 2013

Zac Posen focused on gowns and a ’40s silhouette. The biggest surprise happened on the runway, supermodels Naomi Campbell, Angela Lindvall and Karolina Kurkova walked in his show.

Mary Katrantzou – Printcess Charming

Mary Katrantzou

It’s not the first time that I review the gorgeous Mary Katrantzou, who won last year’s Swiss Textile Award. To read the interview I did with her, please click here.

The Athens-born designer has always experimented with prints, inspired by the art of trompe l’oeil. Since the launch of her eponymous label in 2008, she has wowed the fashion world. Mary Katrantzou belongs to those breakout stars of the digital print revolution that has been sweeping London’s designers.

For S/S 2011, the collection she won the Swiss Textile Award with, she’d been looking at the highly stylized seventies photography of Helmut Newton and Guy Bourdin when it occurred to her that the interiors in the pictures were just as important as the models.  So she decided “to put the room on the woman”. The outcome is a pop-neo-baroque collection that transforms the dresses into lamp shades for example. It must be hellishly difficult to put the placement print on the right spot of a skirt in order not to make you look clumsy. But the most watched UK talent knows her business well. I would highly recommend looking for a great piece from her S/S 2011 collection on sale now.

My favourite dress

This is my favourite dress from the S/S 2011 collection that I wore last night to an art dinner. The theme of the night was architecture and I thought that the print matched pretty well.


W 2011

For F/W 2011, Mary Katrantzou could invest her Swiss Textiles Award trophy money to create an outstanding collection inspired by the most luxurious collectibles in a house. There were dresses done in couture silhouettes that were formed from Fabergé eggs, Meissen porcelain, cloisonne enamel and Ming vases. Her muse was the Duchess of Windsor and her personal belongings. Each girl looked delicate in her dress, like as if you were to drop her she would shatter. A very strong collection!

I cannot wait for more Mary to come!

LoL, Sandra

Swiss Textiles Award 2010

Last night, the 11th Swiss Textiles Award was presented on the occasion of the first Fashion Days Zurich. The highly acclaimed fashion prize is worth € 100.000.- and talented designers like Jason Wu, Duro Olowu, Adam Kimmel, Juun.J, Damir Doma and Mary Katrantzou were fighting for it.
But there can be only one winner! And this year, it went to the only woman in the competition.
I was very happy to meet all of them and talk about their visions and designs.

Mary Kantratzou with me

Mary Kantratzou with me

The winner Greek-born and London-based Mary Katrantzou was my guess and also my favourite. So I was very happy for her to receive the trophy.


The 27-year-old is a graduate of the Rhode Island School of Design and Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design in London.


She belongs to a new generation of designers, using digital prints to create extraordinary trompe d’oeil effects. To me, she is creating unique pieces that the fashion world has not seen before, a true innovation! This is her fourth collection. The first was about perfume bottles, the second about artisanal blown glass, the third was inspired by jewels and this time it is all about rooms. Her stunning S/S 2011 interior-inspired collection was already the talk of London Fashion Week


Mary, congratulations, you have absolutely deserved to win. How do you feel at the moment?

Ecstatic! I couldn’t believe it and cried backstage so I think that says it all.

What does the trophy mean to you?

The financial support is amazing at a stage when the business is growing and it’s so important to have that support. I can invest in my company now on a multilevel, taking it to a newer and international level and award the people who have believed in me. It’s a very prestigious prize, it’s a benchmark and a great honour. You just feel you have been acknowledged.

Does your Greek origin influence your designs?

Probably in the concept of the female figure, meaning to design very closely to the body.
Moreover, it is very difficult and time-consuming to place the prints correctly on the clothes in order to flatter the feminine silhouette.

Do you think that your designs are wearable?

Absolutely! I mean the commercial aspect is important, too. I want women to wear my designs instead of hanging them in a museum. You should feel comfortable.
I like to make objects wearable and desirable. It is just my signature look, I don’t want women to feel objectified.

Any hints concerning your next collection for F/W 2011?

It’s a progression of this one, it’s not as thematic and it’s slightly darker. The thing is with my collections,  if I say too much then it will give it away. Like with this collection if I had said ‘rooms’, I would have revealed too much.

How do you like Zurich?

It is my first time and I haven’t been able to properly enjoy it as I was so busy with this show. But yesterday we were very hungry and went to the lake where all these old buildings are located. It was really nice and I love Zurich.

What will you do next?

Going home to my boyfriend and I think drinks will be on the list. (Giggles.)

Where are you going to put your trophy?

Top front in my new studio that we are right in the middle of moving in.

That Mary had to beat off stiff competition from fellow designers can you see below.

Jason Wu with me

Jason Wu with me

Jason Wu was born in Taipeh and moved when he was a child to Vancouver. He studied to be a sculptor and went to Parsons School of Design. His first collection was launched in 2006.


His career kicked off when Michelle Obama supported the young talent by wearing a custom-designed one-shoulder, floor-length white chiffon gown, at the ball on the night of President Barack Obama’s inauguration. Later, she appeared on the cover of the US-Vogue once again in a Wu design, a magenta silk dress.




Today, Wu works in New York. His eye for details and colours is his strong point.
For S/S 2011 he cut out small petals and created beautiful embellishments.

Jason was very sweet and revealed some interesting facts:

My mum always supported me. She bought me a sewing machine at the age of 10 and paid a fashion student to teach me.
My beloved symbol, the owl, was inspired by my last name Wu because if you say it many times in a row, it sounds like it.


Duro Olowu with me

Duro Olowu with me

Born in Lagos and based in London, Duro Olowu went on a quite different career path.  He studied law in England, worked as a lawyer in Nigeria before switching to his first love, fashion. Drawing on the inspirations he found by the unexpected mix of fabrics, textures and draping techniques of the clothing worn by the women of his native land.


He launched his own label in London in October, 2004 which became an instant hit with his use of luxurious fabrics and ecclectic, clashing prints.
Last year, he opened his own boutique in London.

Michelle Obama has supported Duro’s carrer as well, as she has been seen many times in his vibrant styles.


For his S/S 2011 collection, Duro flipped easily back and forth between retro silhouettes and modern bright pop-like references, incorporationg the saturated colours of tribes in Papua New Guinea and the ever present influence of his Nigerian and Jamaican heritage.

I spoke briefly to him and was overwhelmed by his charming positive attitude. His aura reflects the joie de vivre that shows in his collections.

Being proud of his roots, he is a leading example of how you can life your dream and that everything is possible.

Damir with me

Damir Doma with me

Damir Doma is a modern nomade. His collections are inspired by his own way of living.


He was born in Croatia and grew up in the southern part of Germany. Same like me, he studied fashion design at ESMOD (L’ Ecole Supérieure des Arts et techniques de la Mode) in Munich and Berlin. He graduated in 2004 with magna cum laude for the best collection and worked after that in Antwerp for Raf Simons whom he sees as one of the most inspiring designers.

In 2006 he started his label with menswear, followed this year by his first collection for women. He is widely considered the most improtant German fashion designer of his generation.


Damir explained:

I don’t like the body to adapt to the clothes, it should be vice-versa. I love soft materials and flowing volume. I grew up in my mother’s atelier and was playing with fabric starting in my early childhood. That might be the reason why fabrics play such an important role for me.


Adam Kimmel with me

Adam Kimmel with me

Adam Kimmel stands for the American way of life, uniting the worker and the artist. As he states himself; it’s all about giving the industrial style profile by infusing relaxed elegance.


He studied architecture, completed then later an apprenticeship with an Italian samples manufacturer before launching his debut label in 2002.

The New Yorker designer received standing ovations for the presentation of his S/S 2011 collection last night. The usually more quiet Swiss audience cheered from the first moment when the sounds of Snoop Dogg echoed in the hall.

The Snoop looky-likeys paraded down the aisle in a perfect mixture of hip-hop style elements produced in the finest Italian cashmere. I am sure Snoop would love it.


Later at the after party at Moods, Adam told me more:

I saw the Wall Street Journal including something about Snoop Dogg and got immediately inspired to create this collection.

As we could not bring the models to Switzerland, we did a fun street casting in Zurich before to find the best bad boys.


The final show last night was the one of last year’s Swiss Textiles Award 2009 winner Alexander Wang.
Stay tuned as I did a fantastic detailed interview with him which will soon be published here.

LoL, Sandra

New Generation


Graphic patterns are a big trend for next summer, but the real news is digital manipulated prints.

A genius in creating those swirling effects is the Glaswegian designer Jonathan Saunders who since his graduation in 2002 from London`s Central Saint Martin`s college has been climbing up the ladder of success. Especially his resort 2010 collection (see above) that is available right now has a lot of those notice-me silk screening prints.


There is a new generation of designers that are using computer-generated patterns to achieve a new kind of futuristic look. Peter Pilotto and Mary Katrantzou are among those rising stars.


My favourite is Greek-born designer Mary Katrantzou. Her surrealistic prints of perfume bottles on dresses (see below) were divine last winter. You should get one on sale at Browns. And like Coco Chanel said: „A woman who doesn`t wear perfume has no future“. I am sure this is nothing Mary has to worry about.

For my Swiss based readers: Trois Pommes will carry her beautiful summer collection.

LoL, Sandra


Avatar Inspired Alexander McQueen S/S 2010


It is weekend time and I wanted to inspire you for a movie night out to see Avatar” in 3D directed by James Cameron. The science fiction epic blockbuster plays in the year 2154 on the distant planet of Pandora and seemed to be the inspiration for Alexander McQueen`s “Plato`s Atlantis” S/S 2010 collection.


The models on the catwalk looked so much like the Na`vi race in the movie. The colours green, brown and later on all shades of blue, the amazing digital prints and reptile patterns, all emerging from the sea were like the designer`s apocalyptic forecast.

Lady Gaga premiered her song “Bad Romance” at the show that was supposed to be live-streamed.  But the site crashed because of all the traffic that emerged after she had tweeted to her millions of fans about her newest release.


I could definitely not think of anyone better than her pulling off the techno and futuristic trends for next summer.  She strutted gorgeously in McQueen`s eccentric shoes (I love them!) that made the fashion world gasp when they appeared on the runway. Those towering platforms are a piece of art, deserving to be displayed. The legendary footwear gave the cybernetic look already a cult status.

Let`s capture the cobbled streets of Zurich in those heels- might be fun… at least for the ones watching us!

LoL, Sandra