London Fashion Week 2017 Highlights

London Fashion Week will forever remain an iconic event in the fashion calendar. Thanks to the development and meticulous planning of the BFC (British Fashion Council), LFW is now a place where new emerging talent is welcome and encouraged to share their skills by the established greats of British fashion. The BFC even held its first Global Fashion Awards in December, showing the new business-driven mind that the fashion industry is encompassing. Perhaps this is why the shows this LFW shaped up to one of the most commercially appeasing and successful, with the shows being more accessible than ever and far less outlandish. The new mantra of ready-to-wear seemed to dominate this LFW meaning new slicker designs for the first time in years. However, some designers still managed to find the balance between the wearable and the eccentric, creating designs that are fresh, cutting-edge and exhilarating. A balance that seems very much like the city itself.

House of Holland

 Source

House of Holland are known for their exuberant, quirky style, utilising bright colours and patterns to create stand out pieces. This LFW, designer and creative director Henry Holland did little to disappoint. Every season, his shows drop with the similar vociferous energy and indistinguishable graphics/gimmicks. As the show attendees sat down in the bare concrete setting to the sound of Tennessee-born singer Miley Cyrus’ album ‘BANGERZ’, it was an ample indication for the show to come. When the models finally hit the runway, the immediate ambient of the American Wild West was obvious. Star prints, fringe jackets, flares, graphic knee high boots and cowboy hats took the industrial setting by storm. The cuts and silhouettes of  the pieces ensured that a strong reference to the Wild West was maintained throughout. Standout pieces included maxi chiffon dresses branded with fringed stars, billowing long red trousers with fringed details and over-exaggerated flares, large checked fur coats and a series of items inspired by Woody Woodpecker including thigh-high boots brandishing his face. As a whole, the collection was impressive, but the unique ability of House of Holland to create a collection that accommodates to all buyers, not just those willing to dress as a cowgirl. Despite the high-key Wild West vibes and a prominent American Rodeo aesthetic maintained throughout the collection, there was something for everyone;  graphic tees, tartan skirts and velvet bomber jackets prove that the ready-to-wear collection is cutting edge as well as accessible.

J.W.Anderson

 Source

Jonathon Anderson’s J.W.Anderson collections are the most highly anticipated and sought-after shows of LFW. Every season, Anderson draws more inspiration from more and more eclectic sources. Thus, not only is the brand constantly evolving in an exciting way, but also every show contains a new and exciting collection to present. Due to the ever increasing number of people wearing his clothes and using his accessories, Anderson seems to be on a winning streak. Audiences have seem his style evolve from statements about gender fluidity, to refining his style to feminine glamour.

The designers 2017 Autumn offering appeared to be very much inspired by the woman’s silhouette. Described as being something of a ‘style odyssey’, Anderson focused on the stripped back nature of clothing as well as the structure of building up from there. When creating the collection, Anderson admitted that he attempted to create something very feminine, only to have it crash, and attempted to build up from there. This is perhaps most evident in his work through the layering. The show opened with a capacious black key hole dress with a cinched-in drawstring waist, providing emphasis on the natural figure. Tailored jackets, floral prints matched with feathers and a relatively neutral colour palette (minus the vibrant purple silk dress) dominated the catwalk and provide a hint as to what to expect this Autumn/Winter in high street stores.

Molly Goddard

 Source

One of the hottest designers to emerge from last year, Goddard is known for her immense tulle dresses, smocking, embroidery and crocheting. Although the crowd at LFW are used to daring styles, nothing could prepare them for the experimental designs created by Goddard.

Fascination of preserving a child-like dream in which the perceptions of princesses is still very much real is evident in Goddard’s previous work, and this LFW helped to preserve this image. Keen to perpetuate her image as the go-to designer for the most hardcore party girls in London, this collection provided fashion with a side of fantasy. People involved very heavily with the social circuit will revel in Goddard’s familiar and yet faultless use of embroidery with cross stitch detail, pink cupcake tulle and cinched in smock dresses and sleeves. Sheer dresses over graphic shirts, tutu mini skirts, satin ballet shoes and glittering knee high socks seemed to be reoccurring looks on this seasons catwalk. It is evident that Goddard is looking to reawaken the inner girly-girl inside every woman and their child-like fascination of parties in her newest, exciting Autumn/Winter 2017 collection. Instead of diminishing this inner feminine innocence, it appears that Goddard is attempting to embrace it in a socially modern way that is distinguishable to the brand of Molly Goddard.

Topshop Unique

 Source

Topshop perhaps holds one of the most recognisable names in the high street setting. Translating that onto the catwalk is no easy feat, and yet the Topshop Unique show managed to faultlessly make the transition. Not only that, but the show produced a strong sense of youthful energy and fun.

The show opened with model Lily Donaldson wearing a baggy silk black jumper plastered with the words ‘Happy WKNDR Forever’ across the chest, paired with stripped pajama style trousers. The casual outfit set the tone for the rest of the show as juvenile and boyish- and that was just the beginning. What followed was  PVC skirts, cut out dresses, jackets with green-faux fur and zip up high neck collars. The clothes remained joyful, with masculine and casual figures for the Autumn/Winter 2017 season as well as clothes inspired by Western Indian states, nightclubs and exotic countries. The brand continues to reach commercial success due to the new ready-to-wear strategy adopted last year by many design houses. Pieces are now available online for anywhere between £60-£400.

Ashish

 Source

The brand of Ashish will forever remain bold, youthful and exciting. After reaching commercial success and good reviews from their use of graphic shirts in previous collections, creative director Ashish Gupta utilised the graphic tee again, this time more politically focused. With glittering shirts plastering comments directed towards American President Donald Trump, such as ‘This Pussy grabs back’ and ‘unity in adversity’. The strong political and social messages are not where the collection ends, however.

Although superficially wrapped up in sequin and glitter, London based, Delhi-born designer Ashish produces some of the most thought-provoking shows of the LFW period. Transporting us in a glittery universe away from the mundane everyday life, even the setting saw a glittery yellow brick road with ‘Somewhere over the rainbow’ playing in the background. Perhaps the broken heart and red poppy decor indicated that the show would be symbolic and embedded with lots of meaning. Rainbow stripes and sequined check board pattern and glitter rugby shirts dominated this catwalk as well as recognisable iconography from American sport. The formatting of teams such as Chicago Cubs and Boston Red Sox were reimagined in a loud and exuberant way, amplifying Ashish’s position as a designer invested in the art of escapism, and yet still grounded in the political agenda of reality.

For a full review of Burberry, click here.

‘The minute your brand can be predicted, you’ve got a problem’

– J.W.Anderson

Advertisements

Victoria Beckham AW17 New York Fashion Week #NYFW

Claimed to be one of her ‘best collections yet’, Victoria Beckham took New York in her stride with the debut of her new Autumn/Winter 2017 collection.

Source

Her family populated the front row, sat next to Anna Wintour. The family gifted Beckham a pre-show surprise of a bouquet of flowers to wish the brand good luck, as seen on her social media.

In a statement given before the show Beckham appeared to pay homage to the current political climate for women, with emphasis on the importance of speaking up and taking a stand against oppression. It seems that Beckham has the intention of moving away from showpieces and instead creating looks that could be worn in the bustle of everyday life.

This new re imagining of woman power in fashion saw Beckham display baggy silhouettes and androgynous styled clothing. The collection saw multiple pieces of tailored jackets and wide leg trousers, often donned by Beckham herself, take the runway. Very far away from the tightly fitted dresses of her previous collections, it seems that baggy is the new fitted.

Source

It is notoriously hard to pull off wide fitting clothes in a sophisticated way that does not look like you’ve drowned in material from your parent’s wardrobe when you were younger. In fact, anyone who remembers arriving to school on the first day of term in a blazer four sizes too big and still feels the sting of the words ‘you’ll grow into it’ may not be the biggest fan of the new AW17 collection. The ample clothing, therefore, is not the most accessible to her clients. However, this collection seems to have perfected the best way to style and wear the clothes. Elegant, tailored and fresh. The collection is fundamentally a glimpse into Victoria Beckham’s own wardrobe.

Ahead of her show, Beckham even said “It’s always fundamentally about what I like to wear”. By using tailored suits, rich colours of navy, oxblood, red, oranges and wide leg trousers, Beckham has succeeded in sending a subliminal message of strength. No loud political statement is required, only the subtlety masculine figures.

Coats had large sculptural sleeves and the boots were knee high and slouchy, suggesting that baggy clothes and masculine figures are the way to go for Autumn Winter 2017. Contrasting with the block colours, vibrant patterns were used. Inspired by artist Paul Nash, Beckham created the colourful pattern injected into her collection. Despite the masculine clothing, there is always room for elegance and sophistication.

Before the collection launched, Beckham stated that  “I have always been about empowering women, and that’s never felt more relevant than it does this season.” The result, a collection very much celebrating narrow and yet fluid figures. Beckham described the collection shown in Downtown Manhattan as “emancipation with optimism” and “feminine with a practical streak”. A chic take on big jumpers and double breasted jackets shows a new style for Beckham, but admittedly one that works. The new relaxed style of clothing that could be seen on the woman herself proves successful and another great show was given by the brand; a show that combined political agenda with the power and hope of women, as well as the practicality of fashion itself. It seems that Beckham is accustomed to change up her brand, and perhaps the face of fashion itself.

Victoria Beckham RTW Fall 2017 Source

‘I think the sexiest thing about a woman is confidence, but confidence in a humble way, not in an arrogant way. Sense of humor is definitely important. And sunglasses always hide a multitude of sins. Sunglasses and a great pair of heels can turn most outfits around.’  

-Victoria Beckham

Vivienne Westwood at London Men’s Fashion Week 2017

After completing shows around Europe, Vivienne Westwood finally made her long awaited and much needed return to London to debut her men’s Autumn Winter 17/18 collection.

picture1Source: Instagram 

The fashion crowd seemed far from restless as they took full storm to the streets of London for the last day of London Fashion Week Men’s. It may have seemed odd to anybody not involved in the multitude of fashion reporters, styles, bloggers and lovers. The contrast of the tube strike and the drab weather with the feverish mob appeared to be a fitting embrace of one of fashion’s greats. The national treasure who led the punk movement and is now a full time environmentalist campaigner, Dame Vivienne Westwood debuted at LFWM.

The themes of environmentalism and politics seem to have been a running trend throughout this collection entitled ‘Ecotricity’. These issues seemed to have dominated Westwood’s mind for the past decade or two, and this notion was only highlighted in the stripped back and seemingly hand crafted clothes featured on this seasons catwalk. Some models wore patches plastered with  anti-climate change logos. Handmade paper crowns and outlandish hats perpetuated the crucial theme of climate change, whilst still adding an edgy side which nods in the direction of punk, as is Westwood’s custom.

Source: Instagram

Even those with the haziest knowledge of fashion will recognise Westwood’s name as the pioneering force behind the punk movement. This show did little to disappoint on the punk front. The different location and the barren ambience of the room may have been unfamiliar to the show-goers, but the show had all of the recognisable features of  a Vivienne Westwood display. The show featured designs for both men and women and even featured a plastic knife that had been reworked into an earring.

Rips, tears, mohair pieces and seemingly hand crafted pieces further prove that Westwood and her designer partner, Andreas Kronthaler, are aware of the punk heritage that the name holds. Even with the new interests into preserving the planet, Westwood seems to effortlessly combine her passions into one fluid show that never disappoints the multitude of people watching. There may have been edgy pieces in the collection, but the glamorous dresses and outerwear reminds the loyal fanbase what that Westwood brand is all about.

The show notes read ‘What’s good for the planet is good for the economy/what’s bad for the planet is bad for the economy’. Fashion remains one of the biggest contributors of pollution in our society. Westwood’s collection helped to perpetuate the message that we need to rethink our fashion choices even more. From the string belts to the patched clothing, Vivienne Westwood will not shy away from continuing to convey her revolutionary messages through the medium of fashion; the £33.8 million turnover for 2015 only proves that the Vivienne Westwood brand continues to perform well and provide their customers with the classic style that has become associated with Westwood herself.

With extended applause for her closing of a run of four days of shows, Vivienne Westwood walked surrounded by her models and holding a bouquet of flowers, tears glistening in her eyes. It seems that five decades of fashion will do nothing to stop her, as the leader of the punk movement focuses her talent on the ever impending threat of climate change.

As successfully as she pushed the punk revolution, Westwood will continue to bring the environment to the forefront of all of our minds.

picture4Source: Instagram

‘I think it is a good thing to buy less and choose well- It’s good for the environment and to be fair it’s also good for me because my clothes are quite expensive.’

-Vivienne Westwood

How to Layer: Winter 101

9bee9889598fda42d2cf1c1a1bb0262b

Source: Pinterest

Layering remains one of the best fashion trends of the Autumn/Winter season. It can be both fashionable and incredibly warm and cosy. However, it still terrifies most people. In fear of looking ‘bigger than they actually are’ people either incorrectly layer, or avoid the trend all together. In my experience of layering clothes in order to shield myself from the biting British weather (…or rain), I have compiled a list of the best way to layer clothes in order to keep warm this winter.

  1. Start off with the base layer. Much like building something, you need to start out with a good foundation. I recommend a t-shirt. It’s best to keep something form-fitting, in order to add bulk with more layers. I tend to gravitate towards solid block colours in order to get the seasonal colours in, or more recently, a good stripped tee (which is necessary in everybody’s wardrobe!).
  2. Next, we build on top. This is where the real layering starts, so take advantage of it to it’s fullest. I tend to add either a cardigan or jumper, or anything knitted for that matter. I love chunky cable knit items in the winter. Wear something that goes well with your t-shirt. If you have a plain tee, this step is the place to add a bit of colour into your look.
  3. It is finally time for the coat! Either a coat of jacket will work on this step. I am personally a massive advocate of coats and I love them (stay tuned for a blog post coming soon!). Coats can either make or break an outfit, so I suggest staying with basic colour, such as navy, grey and camel. Bomber jackets will also work, as they are a great trend for this season. This is also a great opportunity to start experimenting with textures. Add different fabrics to add some detail to each layer in your outfit. In terms of silhouette shape, it is your preference. I normally either wear a boyfriend coat, or a duster of some sort.
  4. Finally, to keep yourself extra warm, feel free to add a scarf and gloves to protect yourself from the harsh wind!

Coats: New Look Topshop River Island

‘Knitwear can play a vital part in layering. The simplicity of a lightweight cardigan makes it one of the best ways to layer outfits. I love granddad cardis for winter, worn over a vintage lace shirt, waistcoat and full skirt with slouchy boots’

-Twiggy

Milan Round-up and Highlights

In the third week of fashion week, it seems hardly possible that any more original and breath-taking fashion shows could take place. And alas, Milan Fashion Week commences.

Prada

It seems almost improper to make a post about MFW without starting with the Prada show.

The Prada brand, defined as the pinnacle of high couture fashion delivered it’s collection at MFW. As shown by their half year results, Prada announced a 14.8% decline in its revenue. Inevitably, this makes a gloomy reading, which I think is reflected in their SS17 collection.  Worlds away from the exaggerated embellishment of their AW16 show, this collection adopted a business like tone. In collaboration with David O Russell, a short film accompanied the show which displayed models in corporate interiors. Apparently, the models were sporting serious and even slightly afraid expressions. During a backstage interview, Mrs Prada (the creative director), said that this was completely intentional. The very first look displayed on the catwalk was a bog standard pleated skirt. Little to no embellishment graced the catwalk this season, only the occasional-but beautiful nonetheless-detail of gold embroidery. Ostrich feather trims seemed to have dominated this years runway, complimenting the synced in waists.

This years collection seems to essentially go back to the basics. The more serious and practical tone that permeates throughout this MFW collection reflects the film provided, but perhaps the change in the fashion world itself. Prada are trying to make their ready-to-wear collection more wearable, and thereby, marketable.

Fendi

Another high fashion house hits MFW, this time, it’s Fendi. I think people whose fashion knowledge is hazy at the best of times, still recognise the Fendi brand name. Despite being a power house for couture fashion, the brand has been able to build a shop and a marketable product.

Away from the talk of consumerism, I cannot deny the effortless beauty that this collection exudes. With creative directors, Karl Lagerfeld and Silvia Venturini Fendi, the collection was never going to deliver anything less than experimental, while still retaining the femininity and luxury that the brand stands for. At the beginning of the show, bold stripes and fur fabrics engulfed the models. The baggy trousers helped to emphasise the masculine figure that seems to be a reoccurring theme in the collection. This was only contrasted by the ethereal and scantily clad Gigi Hadid, who emerged sporting  sheer tulle fabrics. Stripes continued to appear, along with synced waistlines and big shoulders, which payed homage to the power suits of the 1980s. Nearing the end of the show, more embellishment appeared. The contrast between delicate fabrics which flowed and pooled around the models bodies, and the more structured figures, which robust embroidery.

The models wore bright, sparkling lipstick and strappy boots, which added to the running theme of both ethereal and structured beauty.

Versace

World renowned for being a luxury Italian brand, this years SS17 did little to disappoint.

With Serena Williams sitting FROW, it seems fitting to see the whole collection based off of a sports theme. Indeed, gym wear seems to be a look that defines the brand, with Williams backing an advertising campaign, the sportswear seems to be at the forefront of Sister Donatella Versace’s mind. Light fabrics of cotton, Lycra and silk seemed to dominate this seasons catwalk. Clashing colours of purples, greens, reds, blues and yellows seem to hint and replicate 1990’s shell suit jackets. This whole collection, in fact, encapsulates a more sophisticated look of the ‘getting fit’ age in the 80s and 90s.

Despite being focused on the sportswear, the collection still saw a lot of 1990s silhouettes being displayed. Crop tops and shell suits indicate a return of the era in spring/summer. Coming away from the show, the only thing being repeated in my mind is the rise of sportswear.

*Disclaimer- I do not own any of the images displayed

‘What you wear is how you present yourself to the world, especially today when human contacts go so fast. Fashion is an instant language.’

-Miuccia Prada 

Autumn Trends

Let’s get physical 

Thanks to Balenciaga’s Autumn Winter 2016 collection, sportswear has risen in popularity for this AW. Available and shown in most high street stores, their is no escaping this trend. Be gym ready and dress down in comfortable, yet stylish clothes this season. Look for block stripes and blue and red colours to style this trend. Baseball caps and gym bags to accessorize.

Autumn trends 2016 sports

1 ) New Look Jacket £19.99

2 ) New Look Block Stripe Jumper £15.99

3 ) New Look Cap £9.99

4 ) Topshop Joggers £34

5 ) Topshop Net crop top £15.00

 Velvet

It’s safe to say that velvet completely dominated A/W 16 fashion shows. From Prada, to Preen. This 90’s trend can be translated into your modern clothes. For a subtle look, combine the accessory trend of chokers, with velvet, and add a hint of velvet into your look. Velvet works well to create texture into your outfit. In a variety of colours, experiment with crushed and ruched velvet.

Velvet!

1 ) New Look Navy Velvet Funnel Neck Dress £24.99

2 ) Pink Velvet Tiger Kimono £68.00

3 ) Boohoo Crushed Velvet Full Skirt £5.00

4 ) Boohoo Velvet Choker £3.00

Military 

As seen by Kylie Jenner modelling in the Mui Mui AW16 show, military is making a comeback this season. Look for anything khaki and style with browns and beige’s. Look for badges and chains to accessorize.

military

1 ) Topshop Military Trench Coat £59.00

2 ) New Look Khaki Military Long Sleeve Shirt £17.99

3 ) New Look Khaki Military Badge Cap £9.99

4 ) River Island Camel Military Culottes £20

5 ) H & M Khaki Long Shirt £14.99

‘What you wear is how you present yourself to the world, especially today when human contacts go so fast. Fashion is instant language’

-Miuccia Prada