March 11, 2012

Live Free, Ride Hard

It feels a bit strange to transition into posting regular content after an entire month of fashion shows. In a way, the excitement has died down now that Fall 2012 Fashion Month has ended. But actually it's quite an exciting time in the world of fashion. Perhaps your experience differs from mine, but it seems that the world's young talent is on the rise. And it's not just fashion. The consumer base is tiring of the big guns, hungry for something fresh and exciting. It's not about the big names anymore as much as the next big thing. It seems that our world has become so fast-paced, constantly changing with every second that goes by, so much so that we're always looking forward rather than concentrating on the present. This means that the names of today don't have as much of an opportunity to bask in their glory, because tomorrow they'll be old news. Going back to fashion: there will always be the die-hards who remain loyal to the last big It label (e.g. Alexander Wang). There will always be the classic brands that remain in our hearts (e.g. Chanel). But the majority of us always have our eyes on those whom we have labeled as 'emerging'. And this has been a major shift from the past, when we reveled in our awe of the current star. Now those under-the-radar brands are on our radars, because everyone is so desperate to discover what's next, to be able to say that they were the one who knew about it first. It's the same thing with everything else in our culture, but it is particularly prevalent in today's fashion world.
Along these lines, runway shows don't seem as big of a deal anymore. One used to have to wait months before the looks were released to the public; now, it's a matter of opening up the Internet and going to a website like to view pictures from a show minutes after its end or even watching a live stream. This is why those emerging designers and whatnot are such a big deal. It's because they're hard to find. We know where to find everything else, so there's no excitement in it anymore. It's the discovery that we love, the feeling of stumbling upon something thrillingly new that few know about.

If you're an avid reader of Girl Loves Color, you may have realized that ever since the beginning of this blog I have celebrated the lesser-known. In this respect, I am mostly referring to fashion labels, but I feel similarly about other cultural categories such as music, art, and destinations (i.e. the miniature restaurant on that side street that is barely even noticeable, that boutique in the middle of absolutely nowhere). This is not so much because I am obsessed with being the one to discover the next big thing - although that's always a good feeling - but because I find that the lesser-known have more freedom. There is a pressure to do something great in order to get noticed by those who will enjoy it, but there is also a creative liberty that cannot be found with the famous.

Now, we finally arrive to the title of my post: Live Free, Ride Hard. This is the name of the Spring/Summer 2012 lookbook of contemporary, London-based shoe label Miista, founded and designed by Laura Villasenin. The designers are hip yet wearable, combining interesting details to create a unique shoe that doesn't scare away the unadventurous. This post isn't really about the shoes, though; it's about the lookbook and what it signifies.
The S/S'12 Miista lookbook feels like a Mexican fiesta. Each image is wildly colorful and pushes the boundaries of what a lookbook is supposed to be. It's absolutely insane, and ever since I first stumbled upon this set of images, I have not been able to forget them.
Live Free, Ride Hard. It's the perfect mantra for such a lookbook and something to live by.
Live Free: Spend each moment of your life as if you are completely free. There are no limits, there are no rules.
Ride Hard: When you put your mind to something or when you have a goal, make your best effort. Work at it: just attack it.
To me, the Miista lookbook means so much more than a set of pictures advertising the new season's line of shoes. It's a message that needs to be spread. These photographs capture the wildness of its designated focus, but inside each image and inside each model is a sense of innate strength.
Returning to my preliminary words, this lookbook proves why emerging designers are vital to our community. They contain a powerful creativity that is practically extinct in so much else, and they carry with it these underlying meanings. Because our world is so caught up in technology and in moving quickly that we forget to stop for a second and consider what people are really trying to tell us.

Images from

View the Miista lookbook in its entirety here.


  1. WOW! amazing! I love the third and last picture. :)

  2. Love this! Love the color! Love the energy! Love the photography :) great post

  3. these are great!! really inspiring photos

  4. When you say you love color you sure mean it! ha where did you find out about this designer? She is way cool!