Fresh style insights, tips and commentary by Michelle Tea, Michael Braithwaite, Leo Plass, Page McBee and Carrie Leilam Love.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Marvin y Quetzal

This is the Mexico City design duo of yore, Marvin y Quetzal. I say of yore because in 2008 Quetzalcoatl Rangel Sanchez, the boy on the left working a sequin and gold chain eyepatch and what appears to be a sort of shawl fashioned from those tiny ribboned bows, like the kind that come with a sticker on the back for you to slap onto a gift - he died in 2008 at the age of 23. I searched high and I searched low, and Google dutifully translated many Mexican blogs and magazine articles for me, and I was unable to find any information about his death save the obvious - it was tragic, and sudden, and he was sort of a genius. His surviving collaborator, Marvin Duran, in the super-sized Lolita sunglasses and secretary blouse, continues to make clothes under the name Marvin y Quetzal.

I like this whole look, especially the weird straw-like wig fringing into the model's face, and the black diamond purse she's carrying.

Honestly, I'm not totally sure what's happening here, and that's one of the sort of fun things about MyQ's often insane designs. Is that an extra-large baseball hat, or an extra-small model? Could be both. This look makes me think of track suits I see at thrift stores, and I get that burst of excitement like I've found something great but it turns out to resemble the evil offspring of a parachute and a hot air balloon, conceived while on a tropical vacation. I'm pretty sure the MyQ version above would not look like that.

I don't know if I so much want to wear these MyQ rompers out about town as much as I want to have a massive slumber party and wear them while eating popcorn and making prank phone calls. And then falling asleep in them in my Hello Kitty sleeping bag.

What's going on? Did she faint after looking at herself in the mirror and seeing how massively awesome her massive dress was? Was she poisoned by a wicked and envious queen, who has sent a flock of flying monkeys to strip the wonderful dress from her and fly it over to her evil lair? Or was the model simply too low-blood-sugar to shoulder the weight of the voluminous garment? We'll never know.

The above looks, I'm fairly certain, were all designed by Marvin and Quetzalcoatl together. The rest of the looks I'm pretty sure are Marvin solo. The clothes are darker, like you'd imagine after a tragedy.

Nice styling with the pantyhose over the head. I want to push my face into all that red velvet.

I like the psychotic puffs on the shoulders, and the long red sash, but please stylists don't put like sporty flats with an evening gown ever, okay? It's not avant-garde, it's just goofy. Maybe this is just having my tastemaking planet, Venus, stationed in the no-nonsense sign Capricorn, but I could live without the whimsical stockings, too.

I like the shawl-y top on this little red tunic, and I like how little it is, and the pockets of course, and the white micro-mini poking out from the hem, but those zany stockings still hurt my feelings. Maybe thigh-high stockings always louse up an outfit. Don't do it.

This look is totally baffling. It's like part stylish hazmat suit, to ride out the end times looking good, if you do look good, which I'm not sure you do. That head gear is like ancient Chinese bee-keeper chic. If it is chic. Which I'm not saying it is. This whole look is like a Zen koan, a nonsensical riddle that is sort of impossible to solve but you spend your life pondering it anyway.

This is one of the best things I've ever seen, and one of the best things about it is it's part of their men's collection. Thank you for this, Martin y Quetzel. Obviously, anyone is welcome to take a shot at working this fringed jumpsuit with chiffon train and tulle explosion headpiece, but it makes me so happy to see this fancy little fruitcake looking so pretty in it.

What is this, some sort of sarong or multi-purpose pashmina-type garment patterned with multi-colored humanoids having sex in a variety of creative positions? Excellent! But, can we talk about styling the models with glowing blue eyeballs, so that the whole look is suggestive of Sleestacks from Land of the Lost on a Caribbean vacay? Remember how their eyes lit up blue when they were all worked up about something?

Anyway. Here are some more looks from this collection:

I like the Castelbajac-y little dress, and I like that it's styled with matching bracelets on each wrist. But most of all I like this wearing a veil over your sunhat thing. I've been in the Caribbean for almost a month, and guess what happens to my face when it's in the sun? It doesn't simply age, though we all know it does. It gets this tragic condition called melasma, which means you get weird little brown splotches on your skin. For some cruel reason it likes to show up on your upper lip, compromising my chosen gender expression with the suggestion of a moustache. This nifty veil does the double-trick off bagging my melasma-ridden face while simultaneously warding off, say, a future melasma soul-patch or goatee.

A rear shot of a vacationing Sleestack model, and I do mean rear. It's hard to endorse the sporting of a coin slot, but that cute little bow on her tailbone sure makes it easier.

Here we are at Marvin y Quetzel's Autum/Winter 2010 collection. I am so into a giant velvet head bow with a crazy long-ass train. Not for me, I can't wear head bows, much to my sadness. Again and again I try to wear a head bow, most recently I was trying to wear a little denim one that I thought was sort of Bananarama-cute, but you know, it is too much to wear a head bow and a pair of eyeglasses. And it is way too much to wear a head bow and a pair of eyeglasses and be almost forty years old. There, I said it.

I think my problem with this collection is there are a lot of cool pieces but they are all flung together sort of higgeldy-piggeldy, and the resulting look is sort of way too much. Like, I LOVE that bodysuit. I love bodysuits generally, it is rare that I meet a bodysuit I don't like. Likewise, it's rare that I come upon a pair of fingerless gloves I''m not fond of, and these colorful pom-pom ones are so excellent, but not with this look, please. And while you're at it, return the hideous striped thigh-highs to the Hot Topic hell from which they came. It just screams Tim Burton and ruin the whole look. Here's the bodysuit as it was shown during Mexico City Fashion Week:

Is this any better? I don't know. The bow now looks all sad and droopy and way too hot for a day that would require a parasol. Which I love, by the way. Here, let's look at some more parasols:

Kind of cute, kind of awful. Like, no pom poms around the boobs, please. But those gloves are the greastest Maybe a pom pom trimmed veil is okay. One thing is certain, with a pom pom veil and a parasol, this model is far less likely to have her career ruined by a melasma moustache. here's to sun protection!

I leave you with my very favorite MyQ creation - jelly huaraches with BOWS. Perfect.

These ingenious jellies are conspiring with Miu Miu's A/W 2010 dresses to make me seriously reconsider my hatred of the bow. Maybe I don't hate bows, I just hate stupid bows, and nothing is stupider than a stupid-looking bow. Adios.

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