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July 29 2014

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226 posts tagged "Guido Palau"

Conic Cornrows and Owl Eyes, Backstage at Alexander McQueen

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mcqueenLashes and cornrows—two of the trends we’ve seen time and again this season—were taken to breathtaking extremes backstage. One could say that pushing things to the max was a signature of the late Alexander McQueen: “This was something Alexander really liked—it feels like a classic code of the house,” said Guido Palau. The never-ending plait dreamed up by the mane master and executed by a team of braiders was no doubt “severe,” but the long, flowing extensions that caught the wind on the runway gave the “silhouette a certain softness.”

“It’s futurism mixed with nature,” Pat McGrath said of the two gasp-inducing looks she devised for the show. “We decided to do the owl world in a punk eye makeup way.” Black spiky feathers hand cut and designed by the face painter were painstakingly glued one by one onto the brows and top lashes. “When would I ever make it easy?” she quipped of the dramatic maquillage that took nearly four and a half hours to complete. Her second creation (worn by the majority of the models) played with shading and light in lieu of plumes—using brick red, silver, and gold metallic pigments to lend a “futuristic” feeling to the face. The end result not only incited a frenzy of flashes from photographers (particularly around the catwalkers with those phenomenal “mothlike” eyes), but also perfectly captured the “McQueen world of innocence, romance, and darkness” with a sensitivity and boldness that won’t soon be forgotten.

Photo: Sonny Vandevelde; Indigitalimages.com

Pony Up, Backstage at Valentino

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valentino-pony“We wanted to do something that wasn’t classic or as normal as a braid or pony, so I added another dimension to the Valentino woman,” said Guido Palau of the superlong tails (26 inches, to be exact) that cascaded down models’ spines. The “dimension” came by way of “little balls or bubbles” that were tied off with black elastic—”a very sort of seventies, late sixties kind of idea,” he noted. The strict center part, slight height at the crown, and hair pulled over the ears—all quintessential beauty signatures of the house—remained.

Face painter Pat McGrath played with light and shading again this season (using a pale powder on the outside of the cheeks and a pearly highlighter above the Cupid’s bow), but added a touch of “eccentricity” with a gray-blue liner on the top and bottom lash lines. Judging by the end result, a dash of whimsy was the perfect way to up the ante on the label’s no-fail hair and makeup recipe.

Photo: Indigitalimages.com

Working Girls, Backstage at Christian Dior

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DiorGone was the “precious” beauty of seasons past, and in her place was the urban, working woman (the Dior version, at least), summarized Guido Palau. Channeling the theme, the hair was all business. First, it was blown smooth with Redken Satin Wear 02, then the area from forehead to crown was shellacked with Forceful 23 hairspray in order to mold the strands tight to the head. “It’s a sculptural look, but the hair will move on the runway,” he said.

“This is a woman of today; she’s in the real world,” noted makeup guru Pat McGrath of the “street and slightly masculine” muse. The striking eyes were crafted using theatrical latex paint in cerulean blue and earthy khaki green—a material artists rarely employ because it requires impeccable timing to layer products over top. After “playing from 9 p.m. to midnight” at the test the day before, McGrath had the process down to a science: The graphic shape (“not a wing—we’re moving away from that,” she noted) was sketched on with a pencil, filled in with the paint, then a pigment in a similar tone was gently pressed into it. “Gradually, the latex swallows the pigment so you get this ultra-glassy feel—like a mirror,” she explained. In addition to colored mascara that matched the shade swathed across lids, the finishing touch was a sprinkling of glitter that reflected greenish gold or blue tinged with lavender. (For formulas that are less temperamental, we like Dior’s forthcoming 5 Couleurs shadow palette in Carré Bleu or Jardin. Or add a hint of office-friendly sheen with the Skinflash Radiance Booster Pen on the high points of the face.)

Between McGrath’s sparkly eyes and the slashes of vivid color seen on the catwalk, I don’t think the Dior customer could ever come down with a case of the Monday blues.

Photo: Sonny Vandevelde; Indigitalimages.com

Midnight in Paris, Backstage at Lanvin

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lanvin“The girls look like a pen-and-ink sketch,” Pat McGrath said of the painterly onyx liner and blunt lashes on view at Lanvin. She applied a black cream formula with a brush, smudging it along the upper rim. In contrast, the lashes were cut clean and square. The theme of the maquillage was “not being afraid to play,” she explained. “The whole idea of the eye and the lash is about being brave and strong.” And this major lid statement didn’t get lost beneath the bevy of hats in the collection. “Don’t forget, when you’re sitting down, you’ll still see the whole face,” McGrath noted.

To reflect the nighttime sensibility evoked by the feathers, decadent furs, and fringed gowns in the lineup, Guido Palau crafted a wet knot. “With the lighting and smoke, you just feel like the hair wouldn’t be dry—it would almost be too romantic,” he said. Palau doused strands with Redken Guts 10 Volume Spray Foam before raking the length back with his fingers and twisting it into a messy bun, placing it high or low depending on whether the model was donning a marabou-trimmed chapeau. For a glistening effect that played off the graphic pendants or hints of sparkle in the clothes, he finished with a generous spritz of Shine Flash.

Photo: Sonny Vandevelde; Indigitalimages.com

Story Time With Pat McGrath and Guido Palau: The Look at Dolce & Gabbana Fall 2014

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“Once upon a time in Sicily…” read the invite to Dolce & Gabbana, and the clothes, many of which were accented with woodland creature-inspired appliqués, followed the fairy tale theme. A skeleton key motif was also threaded throughout several pieces in the collection, almost as if to say the doors to the designer’s secret winter garden had been unlocked. Backstage—a clandestine world all its own—the heroes of hair and makeup, Guido Palau and Pat McGrath, were hard at work crafting an “enchanted” look to match the storybook-worthy set. Gather round as the dynamic duo tell their captivating beauty tale: