The forecast for Summer 2013: Graphic Tees all over the world


graphic-tee-dakota-fanningIn the 50’s, a movie star named Marlon Brando wore one in his film A Streetcar Named Desire. This propelled designer T-shirts to its status as a fashionable, ready to wear item of clothing you can wear every day. In the late 60′s artists relaised the potential for designer t-shirts and started producing increasingly original designs, a trend that Virgin Blak has carried forward to today with a contemporary twist.

Paris, London, New York and Milan Fashion Weeks all saw models parading mostly 80s inspired graphic tees down the runways telling us the forecast for Spring/Summer 2013.

Check out New Moon star Dakota Fanning rocking her Victorian Gothic inspired tee with her black Boyfriend style blazer.

The Virgin Blak T-shirt range is designed and manufactured by some of fashions hottest designers and our team is setting trends that other brands follow. Virgin Blak also produce a fine range of other garments such as designer hoodies and we are extending our range all the time.

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The Designer T-shirt is here to stay with celebs and movie stars still setting the trend.

Virgin Blak DIY: ‘Earn Your Spikes’


qq-1Since autumn 2012 we’ve been seeing studs & spikes everywhere. Almost every brand has studs and spikes in their new collection and I mean everything. This season, and possibly for the rest of the year, there’ll be no end to the trend, we’ll see studs and spikes on bracelets, scarves, shorts, tops, jackets, leggings, hats, boots, bags, bras – and at Virgin Blak, our very own famous sunglasses  ;)

At Virgin Blak we’ve got enough studded trousers, bags, boots and jackets to arm a punk rock platoon, and as much as we’d like you to choose a studded item of clothing from our online store, nothing gives you that punk rock feeling of freedom and rebellion like making your own studded leather or denim clothing and creating your own one-of-a-kind custom patterns to fit your needs exactly. You could even neon paint your studs to create a special custom design.

kkInstalling studs on leather is fairly easy to do and doesn’t require any special equipment. Just take your time and work carefully to avoid making a mistake – if you’re planning on spiking up a jacket choose an old jacket to practice on at first, this look works better on more distressed and destroyed items of clothing anyway.

Below is a 5 step technique of how to apply Virgin Blak’s own screwback studs n’ spikes to a leather jacket – but you can use the same technique to add our studs and spikes to breathe new life into just about any leather or denim items you have laying in the back of your drawer or wardrobe.

DSC_0104Instructions

Things you need:

  • Studs or spikes
  • X-Acto Knife or Leather Punch
  • Chalk

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  1. Select the kind of studs you want to attach to your garment or belt. Our studs come in 3 sizes – 10mm, 12mm, & 25mm – they are fitted with screws which are both more suitable and easier to apply to thicker, coarser leather items such as trousers, leather jackets, boots and handbags.
  1. Examine stud designs for belts, handbags or jackets by looking through magazines or Internet fashion sites – Check some of our own studded clothing designs on the Virgin Blak Pinterest.

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  1. Lay out your leather jacket on a flat surface such as a counter top or table.
  1. Either use chalk or press the stud firmly against the point on the leather where you want the stud to set. There will now be a mark on the leather you can use for guidance on where to attach the stud.
  1. Pierce a hole using a thin, straight pin through the point you marked in Step 4. Check to make sure the pin has a smaller tip that the stud itself or the hole will be too broad for the stud to set. A leather punch can be used for thicker items such as leather handbags or boots.

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  1. Push the stud against the leather at the point where you made the hole with the pin or punch and screw in the base areas of the stud with your forefinger and thumb. Repeat the process with the rest of the studs you want to attach to the leather jacket.

 

From Chaos to Couture: America’s biggest art museum tribute to punk this summer


Punk CoutureVirgin Blak fans will be excited to hear that New York’s Met museum has revealed that Punk will be the theme of its annual Costume Institute Exhibit and its much-anticipated gala.

The Punk: Chaos to Couture Exhibit which is set to open in May 2013, seeks to highlight the origins of the punk movement and will include around 100 haute couture and ready-to-wear creations from the likes of Dolce & Gabbana, Marc Jacobs, Alexander Wang and Rodarte.

The show will look at the transatlantic origins of the movement from the mid-1970s, joining the dots between the punk scenes of London and New York.

Costume Institute curator Andrew Bolton has said: “The show will start off primarily with the origins of punk and the tale of two cities.

“Punk broke all rules when it came in to fashion, everything became possible after punk. Its impact on high fashion became enormous, and still continues to this day.

Sid Vicious“It’s generally accepted that punk was a musical movement that emerged in the early to mid-Seventies at CBGB and Max’s Kansas City [in New York] with punk bands like The Ramones. When it emerged in London, it became a different phenomenon that was much more political and aesthetic. That look of punk was formulated in London primarily through Vivienne Westwood and Malcolm McLaren.”

The exhibition, at the museum’s Cantor galleries, will  juxtapose original punk looks with the designer creations that were inspired by or incorporated punk elements, e.g., Gianni Versace’s ultrasexy black safety pin dress that made Elizabeth Hurley an overnight star.


“Primarily the biggest legacy is DIY [do-it-yourself] and deconstruction,” he added. “Punk has had one of the biggest influences on fashion over the last 30 years, and sometimes people wear punk without even realizing it.”

Why not check out Virgin Blak’s latest discounted and newly arrived punk couture clothing right HERE – we’re so punk we even broke the conventions of DIY and did it for you!

Photographer Nick Knight, who is known to incorporate innovative technology into his images, will serve as the creative consultant and will create the gala’s look with Raul Avila.

The list of designers in the exhibition is extensive: Haider Ackermann, Miguel Adrover, Azzedine Alaïa, Boudicca, Ann Demeulemeester, Dolce & Gabbana, Andrew Groves, Marc Jacobs, Rei Kawakubo, Alexander McQueen, Rodarte, and Alexander Wang are just some of the names that will be incorporated in thematic galleries. These will be titled “Rebel Heroes,” “The Couturiers Situationists” (focusing on punk’s godparents McLaren and Westwood); “Pavilions of Anarchy and Elegance,” “Punk Couture;” “DIY Style” and “La Mode Destroy.”

Punk Couture          London Punks of the 1970s          Punk Couture

Funded by Moda Operandi and Conde Nast publishing house co-chairs of the Met ball include Rooney Mara, Givenchy’s Riccardo Tisci, Lauren Santo Domingo and Vogue Magazine’s editor-in-chief Anna Wintour.

Tickets for the New York staged event are said to be selling from $25,000 upwards, while tables are priced at around $150,000.

Asked what kind of looks he is expecting on the red carpet next year, Mr Bolton added: ‘I think we will be seeing dresses with a slight tear or gaps, which is so punk but very subtle.’

 

VIRGIN BLAK NEW ARRIVALS:

Damaged Grunge Leggings          Tattered Stars and Stripes Flag Graphic T Shirt          Skull Stud Suede Loafers

With both this exhibition and London’s V&A exhibition centred around the music and fashion of the 80s kicking off in July, it seems that punk and rock ‘n’ roll are taking over the world’s two most important cities this summer, and we at Virgin Blak could not be happier about that, what’s better than a world full of rock ‘n’ roll!?

Punk: From Chaos to Couture will kick off with the annual Met Gala on May 6 and will be on public display from May 9 to August 11, 2013.

Summer 2013: Neon, Gothic & Fetish! London’s 80s trends to show at V&A museum


David-BowieThis is an event that is sure to interest all fans of Virgin Blak, since it explores the initial intoxicating inspiration for our own extreme and flamboyant clothing designs and where it came from, almost 30 years ago.

With just a quick glance at the pictures on this post any true Virgin Blak fan will see a direct correlation between the fashion of those days gone by and the fashion we have in store for you in our online store. In fact we’re pretty sure we have an item in store that perfectly emulates every item you see here!

Music and clubbing has always been intertwined with fashion and none more so than in the 1980s. The V&A’s fashion exhibition for summer 2013, Club to Catwalk: London Fashion in the 1980s, will explore the creative explosion of London fashion in the 1980s and the impact of club culture.

More than 85 outfits by designers such as John Galliano, Vivienne Westwood and Katherine Hamnett will be on display together with accessories by designers including Stephen Jones and Patrick Cox.

The ground floor gallery will focus on the young fashion designers who found themselves on the world stage for creating bold, exciting looks. The mezzanine gallery will concentrate on club wear, grouping garments by tribes such as Fetish, Goth, Rave, and the New Romantics. This includes clothes of the type worn by Robert Smith, David Bowie, Boy George and Adam Ant, as well as more extreme designs worn by Leigh Bowery.

Duran Duran

To provide a snapshot of the most fashionable and creative designers working in London in the 1980s, the exhibition shows a display of Blitz denim jackets. In 1986, Blitz magazine commissioned a group of 22 London-based designers to customise denim jackets provided by Levi Strauss & Co. The jackets were exhibited at the V&A and auctioned in aid of the Prince’s Trust on 10th July 1986.

Further cases will display garments by influential 1980s designers, with a substantial amount of menswear designs by Jasper Conran, Paul Smith, Workers for Freedom and Willy Brown who dressed Duran Duran.

In the early 1980s Katherine Hamnett pioneered the vogue for stylish, casual clothing made in oversize crumpled cottons and silks. Her designs were often based on utilitarian boiler suits and military fatigues.

London’s clubs in the 1980s acted as a site for the convergence of music and fashion and provided a safe environment in which young people could experiment and mix with those of similar tastes. Fashion designer Stevie Stewart of Body Map noted that ‘each group of people, whether they were fashion designers, musicians or dancers, filmmakers or whatever, living together, going out together and at the same clubs … had a passion then for creating something new … that was almost infectious’. Examples of the resultant looks will be displayed, ranging from the exaggerated, exotic styles favoured by the Blitz crowd, through the distressed styles of Hard Times.

denim jacket customised by Leigh Bowery with fringes of hairgrips          Khaki suit designed by Katharine Hamnett           Denim jacket, 'BLITZ', by Levi Strauss & Co., customised by Vivienne Westwood

The exhibition will feature magazines of the time – The Face, i-D and Blitz – that captured and propagated the club and street look to a wider audience. The Face heralded the arrival of the ‘style’ magazine and combined a sense of immediacy with the high-end production values of Vogue and Tatler. i-D, essentially a fashion fanzine, was launched in August 1980 and, alongside The Face, was considered the definitive ‘style bible’ of the 1980s.

Accessories were an essential part of any clubber or fashion follower’s wardrobe and the 1980s launched the careers of some hugely influential accessories designers. The work of Judy Blame, Bernstock Speirs, Patrick Cox, Johnny Moke and collaborations with Sock Shop will be on display alongside the Filofax and Mulberry bags.

The exhibition is curated by V&A Head of Fashion, Claire Wilcox, and Wendy Dagworthy is the expert consultant.

 Entry to the exhibition will be £5. Tickets will go on sale June 2013. To book visit www.vam.ac.uk or call 020 7907 7073 (booking fee applies)

Club to Catwalk: London Fashion in the 1980s

10th July 2013 – 16th February 2014

Virgin Blak welcomes Vera Mesmer


avatars-000024301584-5ro50u-largeWe are pleased and proud to announce that Christopher Mesmer, vocalist and guitarist of L.A based ‘Murder Mystery Steam-Rock’ band Vera Mesmer, has joined the Virgin Blak family as our latest endorser.

The flamboyant fashion icon frontman mixes his evident Steampunk fashion musings with notions of a Wild West gunslinger, Dillingeresque bankrobber,  mysterious madman alchemist and the slight hint of a somewhat slick Jack The Ripper. If fashion could kill, Christopher would have a notable number of bodies under his belts (which he purchases from Virgin Blak of course!)

The music of theatrical three piece Vera Mesmer is moving and mystifying, it incorporates cabaret and carnival, it is both haunting and reconciling…elating, ethereal, but also dark and decadent. Here is a band that has undeniable talent and endless potential. It is frankly impossible not to be mesmerized by Vera Mesmer.

Vera Mesmer’s debut record “Orphans” was released on Nov 6th 2012 to be followed by the second album titled “Outlaws” set for an early spring 2013 release.

On Virgin Blak Clothing Christopher said: “I am very happy and honored to have the opportunity to work with a company such as Virgin Blak.  Fashion is a massive part of what my musical identity is defined by.  There really isn’t another company that fits the aesthetic and (pardon me for saying) “balls” of what it is that I do.”

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Watch Vera Mesmer’s music video: Back From The Dead 

www.veramesmer.com

 

Punk Fashion Comeback: Back to black with Virgin Blak


‘Distorted guitars and hoarse vocals will be the soundtrack for 2013 as heavy rock has its biggest resurgence since the 1990s’, claimed Britain’s The Times newspaper in an article last week.

BVB

And following hand in hand will be a notable surge in rock and punk fashion on the street, this uprising could be clearly foreseen throughout 2012, from the catwalk to the high street the fashion mood turned decidedly dark, and in a good way. Punk, Goth and 80s Darkwave fashions are back with a vengeance.

The increase in the amount of metal resounding through the streets and fashion runways last year could be easily seen and heard– literally. The fact is studs, spikes, zips, chains and leathers are no longer just for Bikers. From jackets and handbags to heels and jewelry, adding studs to any clothing item can completely transform it’s look and style.

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 It has often been said that everything in the fashion world is recycled. This is because of the phenomenon that fashion trends are repeated every twenty or thirty years. One of the best examples of this is the 70′s revival in the 90′s, which did not only influence fashion but the different aspects of popular culture as well. If this rule of repeating fashion trends is to be followed, it was always expected that in the first decades of the twenty-first century, it would be 80′s fashion, specifically the punk fashion trend, that would make a comeback, and indeed it has. This comeback, although expected was not anticipated to be as big as it has become, which has made every fashionista scramble to get those distressed tight jeans and pop culture T-shirts and a pair of Chuck Taylors – and here at Virgin Blak we are chock full of all of those!

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Every era is accompanied by a fashion trend and the 80′s are one of them. This is because it was during the 80′s when the world saw very distinct fashion trends. Some of these include the popularity of black and white striped shirts and shirts with floral prints in the 80′s, which recently have also made a comeback, especially among punk rock artists. Another example is the recent popularity of big earrings, belts and other accessories, which were also distinct to the 80?s, which are used to make the people wearing them stand out. In addition to these, all sorts of accessories like jewelry, epaulettes, sunglasses and leather gloves are also making a comeback, which are very effective in adding flair to any outfit.

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 Ladies and gentlemen, welcome back to black. Welcome to Virgin Blak.