Friday, 23 March 2012

Royal seal of approval - Lulu Kennedy's fashion MBE

Congratulations are in order for Fashion East founder Lulu Kennedy who was awarded an MBE for her services to British fashion yesterday at Buckingham Palace. A champion of emerging design talent, Kennedy's Fashion East seeks to give young designers a platform to show their work and has seen the likes of Gareth Pugh, Jonathan Saunders and Richard Nicoll skyrocket to international acclaim through her guidance. 'Fashion's fairy godmother' also produces an achingly cool capsule collection each season in collaboration with each of her designers under the name Lulu & Co.

Fittingly Kennedy chose to represent her own designers when receiving the accolade from the Queen wearing a Roksanda Ilincic jacket and a skirt and top by Michael van der Ham, complete with his Louboutin-collaborated shoes. She said of the recognition, "Today was such an honour for me and something I will never forget. I only wish I had been able to take each and every one of my designers with me. I can't wait to celebrate with them this evening."

True to her word Kennedy celebrated with a Madhatter's Tea Party at The Sanderson with designer pals and Fashion East alumni including Louise Gray, Marios Schwab, Henry Holland and Nicholas Kirkwood. Fashion credentials firmly in place of course an outfit change was in order; for the evening's festivities Kennedy donned yet more of her protégées' creations in the form of a Meadham Kirchhoff cardigan.

More soon.

SHOWstudio's Fashion Fetish

Lucky for us fashion voyeurs, SHOWstudio will be releasing a series of short films interpreting the term 'fashion fetish' using recognisable faces from within the industry such as Lady Amanda Harlech, Lily Donaldson and Daphne Guinness to name a few. The first of these visual delights comes in the form of model-of-the-moment and my current favourite girl crush, Karlie Kloss who seduces the viewer in an array of underwear and wigs for this provocative Ruth Hogben-directed piece delicately entitled 'Fuck Me'.

Having stalked runways and dominated advertising campaigns the world over since she was 14 - by all accounts a genuine and unassuming young girl from St.Louis, Missouri - doors previously closed by legalities and social stigma have now been flung open for Kloss since her coming of age and the fashion industry are queuing up to have the 6-foot-1 model appear in more mature projects. Indeed since turning 18 Kloss has appeared in a controversial nude Vogue Italia spread and become one of Victoria's Secret's famous 'Angels', walking in their most recent lingerie show.

Victoria's Secret show 2011

Any opportunity to stare at this inimitable beauty, Kloss also recently appeared in another SHOWstudio project this time under the direction of Nick Knight for a film focusing on Topshop's NewGen initiative and its landmark tenth birthday. In the film Karlie showcases the young British design talent from the scheme's successful last ten years including Mary Katrantzou, David Koma and Christopher Kane.

More soon.
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Oh Boy, Chanel

While you may be forgiven for thinking that Alice Dellal and Chanel seem like an incongruous pairing - Dellal being best known for her punk sensibilities and undercut hairstyle - the 24-year-old model who was handpicked by Karl Lagerfeld to front his latest 'Boy Chanel' handbag campaign is veritable fashion royalty. Goddaughter of Mario Testino, daughter of Brazilian supermodel Andrea and sister of genius shoe designer Charlotte, it was only a matter of time before major labels snapped her up.

Dellal has been out of the spotlight for the last few years, having modelled for the likes of Vivienne Westwood and Agent Provocateur in the past, but is enjoying somewhat of a comeback this season also fronting a major campaign for Marc by Marc Jacobs.

See the gorgeous Karl Lagerfeld-shot Boy Chanel campaign below:

I love the compromise met between Alice's own personal style that she has become known for and the classic ladylike Chanel look. The French fashion house commented on Lagerfeld's casting of the half-British half-Brazilian model to WWD saying, "Alice Dellal represents the perfect incarnation of all that is unique about the Boy Chanel handbag collection, which strives to be far from conformist notions of femininity."

The line itself is completely covetable and something a bit more off-beat than your average 2.55, taking a cue from their name these bags are harder and more masculine but still a solid contender for 'classic' style status. I'm really into the pared-down chic manifested in simplified geometric shapes and a variety of colours.

More soon.

Wednesday, 21 March 2012

Tom Ford Autumn/Winter 2012

Tom Ford's highly anticipated return to womenswear after a six year absence hasn't disappointed thus far and the fourth collection for his eponymous label is no different. Even more hush hush than his notoriously top secret first three collections - which even saw top editors shunned from his super intimate, salon-style shows - Ford decided once again to forgo a traditional presentation instead choosing to premiere two dresses on Hollywood actresses. The Tom Ford brand is synonymous with luxury and this was the ultimate way to showcase his designs, not to mention a great continuation from seasons past where Ford called upon superstar friends such as Beyonce and Julianne Moore to walk the runway for him.

Beyonce walking in Tom Ford's Spring/Summer 2011 show

The two actresses in question were of course Gwyneth Paltrow (at the Oscars no less) and Jennifer Lawrence, star of what is being dubbed 'the next Twilight', The Hunger Games, leaving fashion spectators to muse over which A-lister would show off the next piece of the collection in this unique manner.

Gwyneth Paltrow at the Oscars, February 2012

Jennifer Lawrence at The Hunger Games premiere, March 2012

However impatient fashion fans can now take a beady eye off the red carpet and rejoice as Ford has released a video lookbook of the full collection!

While I'm not sure how chic the electro YouTube photo-montage is, the collection itself is everything we have come to expect from the label; incredibly sleek, chic, monochromatic looks for Ford's sexy, powerful woman. As always there was a winning combination of the most luxurious and exotic furs and animal skins (sorry, PETA), exquisite tailoring and metal hardware punctuated by a few thrilling brights, not to mention the to-die-for accessories (I want those bags!).

More soon.

Tuesday, 20 March 2012

The Rise and Rise of Lana Del Rey: New Video

The hair! The pout! The dark Hollywood glamour! What more could we want from everyone's new favourite pop ingenue? Following her low-budget first video and movie-quality second, it's nice to see something fresh and simple but still undeniably Lana continue her string of successes from number 1 album, 'Born To Die'. Check out Lana Del Rey's new video for her latest single 'Blue Jeans':

Fashion's new darling has risen to fame in just a few short months, first coming onto the it-crowd's radar last September during the Spring/Summer 2012 shows when both Christopher Kane and Emilio de la Morena chose Lana's hit single 'Video Games' for their soundtracks. The song shot her to international stardom via a phenomenal amount of YouTube hits - it now stands at a staggering 35 million views. Since then she has rocketed to sartorial success with a British Vogue cover and even a Mulberry bag, the 'Del Rey', named after her.

British Vogue March 2012

Lana with her white ostrich 'Del Rey' at Mulberry's AW12 show at London Fashion Week

Controversies aside (Lana previously released music under her real name Lizzy Grant, not to mention that SNL performance) it looks like Lana is here to stay and I'm excited to see what comes next. Enjoy the videos for her first two singles below:

Follow me on twitter for by-the-minute updates.

Spring/Summer 2012 - Dare To Bare?

I hope you've all been adhering strictly to your Dukan diet and squeezing in those early morning Bikram sessions because this season it's all about the bare midriff. Yes it seems 90's sex appeal is back and it will be invading our wardrobes for the summer months to come. The trend was interpreted in varying degrees of undress by designers ranging from Topshop Unique to Dolce and Gabbana, and while some looks require more confidence than others there's a little something to suit even the most prudish girl's sensibilities. So the question remains; will you dare to bare?

Crop tops and bra-lets were seen on many a Spring/Summer runway paired with romantic, full, feminine skirts or - for the truly daring - a sexy pencil option. The key to keeping this sweet and not salacious is to wear your waistlines high and your hemlines below the knee.

Emilio Pucci

Proenza Schouler

Dolce and Gabbana

Viktor and Rolf


For the less brave among us layering is a great way to try the trend while still not flashing too much flesh - the addition of a jacket means hemlines can climb higher and it still remains relatively demure. The look even manages to feel smart and dare I say 'fashion office-appropriate' when a cropped shirt is teamed with a smart blazer like at cuter-than-cute Carven - definitely one I'll be trying.

Dolce and Gabbana



Louise Gray

Miu Miu

For something a bit more subtle, slashed waists on evening-appropriate dresses offer a more ladylike take on the bare midriff.

Jonathan Saunders

Christopher Kane

More soon.

Friday, 16 March 2012

Nails - Your Best Accessory

If you follow me on twitter you'll know I have a small penchant for nail art. There is nothing better or more relaxing than the pure indulgent feeling of a good manicure and I thoroughly enjoy spending my Sunday afternoons trying out new styles on my own digits. I find that nail art is an undeniably quick and cost-effective way to dip a tentative toe into the season's trends without committing to a full look. Here is a little catch up of some of the more fun, tongue-in-cheek styles I've been painstakingly experimenting with over the last few months..

My personal favourite, I found inspiration in my Christopher Kane galaxy t-shirt for some fantastically ostentatious nails:

Having spent a good portion of my childhood in the good old U S of A, I like to make a bit of effort for July 4th:

The festive season called for something glittery with a hint of red, plus I'm a big fan of experimenting with a modern twist on retro half-moons:

During those long winter months in London when it felt like you'd never see sunshine again, I painted my own blue skies to keep me smiling:

A little something to get you in the mood for Spring with a few cheeky ladybirds:

Regrettably, I couldn't quite commit to those AW11 Dries Van Noten snakeskin boots:

Something tropical for Spring/Summer:

Something a bit more subtle - an edgy take on french tips:

My new obsession for the coming season is this divine fuchsia and red colour combination, as seen at Thakoon AW12:

More soon.

Shit Fashion Girls Say - The Ugly Truth

I'm sure you've all seen by now the hilarious 'Shit Fashion Girls Say' Youtube videos that have been hitting painfully close to home for some of us. Since I've been absent for so long I thought I'd use my first post back to add a little humour and post all three videos together here, I'm sure you'll agree they're funny even after the second watch. A friend of mine came up to me at a party recently and said these made her think of me, while my husband simply rolled his eyes and reminded me how many of these depressingly spot-on one-liners I had said that very day, make of that what you will..

Part One:

Part Two:

Last but by no means least, my personal favourite, Fashion Week Edition featuring the ultimate fashion girl, Derek Blasberg. Pure genius:

I'm off to cry into my Prosecco and mull over getting bangs again. More soon.

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