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

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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

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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

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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

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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

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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

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Stocking Fillers Under £20

It seems like Christmas has popped out of no where this year. One minute, I was starting the new year by setting up my blog, and the next minute it was time to get the decorations out from the attic and start the exciting and yet arduous process of Christmas shopping.

With the shock of Christmas coming so early, the inevitable rush of shopping commences. Whether you’ve put off going shopping this year or you have absolutely no idea what to get the person in your life, I guarantee you there is some one in the same position. Often Christmas shopping can be difficult, especially if you are on a budget. In light of this struggle, I have put together a list of items and advice of gifts that are assured to be great presents for a range of different personalities. Stay calm and happy shopping!

Always remember…

  1. Steer clear of clothes unless you know the person extremely well (and they have directly hinted of what they would like as well as telling you their size), everybody has their own personal style and it is better to get them something else rather than getting them something that will only gather dust and take up space. That being said, pyjamas make a great present and are sized a lot more effectively (when in doubt, most people will take a medium as lounge-wear is meant to be over sized).
  2. DO NOT BUY SHOES. Slippers and socks, yes. But not shoes. If you do, make sure to include a gift receipt.
  3. Jewelry can be great, but make sure it is dainty and not too much of a statement. It is better to go for plainer and yet pretty bracelets, necklaces and earrings. Steer clear of rings as it is difficult to estimate size.
  4. Think about every thing you use and like, but you never buy for yourself. Socks, slippers, stationary, bath stuff. These are usually always successful presents, and shops such as Boots (look out for their great 3 for 2 offer that runs for the festive period) and Lush always have great sets with a range of prices that will accommodate any budgets.
  5. If in doubt, give a gift card. It may seem slightly impersonal, but remember that it would be better to get a gift that you can personalise to yourself than something that you would not enjoy.

WARNING: ROYAL MAIL ARE HAVING A STRIKE FROM NEXT WEEK TO CHRISTMAS EVE. BRITISH PEOPLE ORDER CAREFULLY!    

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Paperchase Notebook £12

NYX Lip and Eye Collection £15

Soap and Glory Clean Get Away Gift Set £10

Sanctuary Candle £10

Primark Slipper Socks £3

Inside Vogue £11.89

Little Women £7.49

Charlotte Tilbury Party Eyes Kit £20

Lush Golden Wonder Set £9.95

New Look Pyjamas £7.49

New Look Mug £5.99

Lindt Chocolate

‘Whoever said money can’t buy happiness simply didn’t know where to go shopping’

-Bo Derek

How to Layer: Winter 101

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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

Street Style Steal

Fashion month has become as much about the street style as it is about the actual shows.

Instagram, Twitter, Blogs, Snapchat…It’s no secret that pretty much all social media is flooded with quick street I’m-not-prepared-for-this-but-please-get-in-my-new-jacket-pictures when fashion months arrive. Although I am a major advocate for the fashion shows, I actually find a lot of enjoyment at looking at what the show attenders are wearing. The newest trends are intermingled with thrift and high street shopping. These are some of the most fashionable people in the industry. Their fashion not only experiments and shows new styles, it also reflects the culture of the streets themselves. New, urban and exciting, the street style manages to encapsulate what it means to be fashionable and seems to highlight the accepting everyday that is interwoven with art and real people. Far from the glitz of the show inside, but far more easily accessible. One of my favourite pass times, as I am a self-professed fashion addict, is to compile different looks that mirror that of those seen on the streets of London, New York, Paris and Milan.

Alexa Chung

Whilst attending the Miu Miu show at Paris Fashion Week, Alexa donned a tassel jacket paired with a slip dress. As always, Alexa Chung remains one of my ultimate style icons. Incorporating and experimenting with different fashion trends, she always manages to pull it off in a chic and yet intimidating way. This look is no exception.

As seen in her Instagram, a delicate pink slip dress is contrasted with a bulky western-styled biker jacket. Although you could not get two items of clothing that are further away from each other, when put together, they seem to just work. As if every biker girl wears a slip dress reminiscent of a old Hollywood night gown. In fact, the intricate gown will look great with any jacket to give it an attractive and yet don’t-mess-with-me kind of look.

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Topshop Embroidered Boots (£42.00)

Topshop Pink Slip Dress (£24.00)

Boohoo Tassel Jacket (£40.00)

Boohoo Wrap Around Choker (£4.00)

Kate Foley

Embroidery seems like a massive trend for this months street style, and it looks to continue to this AW16. Here we see Kate Foley incorporating embroidery into her dress. Although difficult to find a dress similar to hers, different types of embroidery are readily available in almost any high street store you look into. I particularly like doubling up my embroidery and pairing a loose shirt with a tight skirt, to pay homage to the ‘masculine figure’ trend, while still looking neat. A coloured cross body bag is always a must at a fashion week and is probably one of the most versatile accessories you could own in your wardrobe.

Foley also does a great job of combining the sophisticated and dressed up with sporty and relaxed style, like street style itself. Here she wears black trainers paired with a dress to style down an otherwise fancy dress. I personally love this style, and it is an easy way to style an otherwise difficult to wear outfit.

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Topshop Skirt (£110)

Zara Shirt Dress (£49.99)

Topshop Cross Body Bag (£15.00)

Topshop Velcro Shoes (£26.00)

Fashion show

Ruffles, ruffles…ruffles. There is no escaping this trend, and I have to say I am quite pleased about it.

Ruffles seems to be dominating this fashion months style scene. They are an effortless way to add accessory to an outfit, without having to wear any jewelry. The masculine shirts with ruffles makes any outfit look great, as seen modeled by the fashion show goer. Tailored trousers should be added to give the outfit a smart and molded fit. Very on trend at the moment, and makes an outfit look incredibly well put together. However, this can look quite monotone due to the basic colours, so in order to counteract this, pair with a colourful pair of boots (Topshop are currently stocking a lot a great ones!).

Away from the two major fashion trends this person is covering, a baseball cap has been added, which not only adds attention to the outfit, but also displays the major sportswear trend that is sweeping up the high street stores. Pairing sports gear with a more smart outfit helps to adapt and make the clothes more wearable, and makes it look great.

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Zara Ruffle Top (£59.99)

Topshop Trousers (£46)

Topshop Heeled Boots (£75.00)

New Look Hat (£7.99)

‘The best fashion show is definitely on the street. Always has been, always will be.’

-Bill Cunningham 

Pokémon Go: The Fashion Edit

Everywhere I turn at the moment, I see the new plague that has swept the world, known as Pokémon Go. It has even taken over the news. We cannot escape it. Pokémon Go is everywhere.

So if you can’t beat them, why not join them?

After downloading the app (and walking around my area aimlessly trying to ‘catch ’em all’) I could see what had captivated the world. The nostalgia of using Pokémon immersed people back to a time with their Gameboys and Tamagotchi in tow. That got me thinking about throwbacks in fashion that have emerged throughout these past seasons. Since the sudden popularity of Pokémon has provided everyone with the comforting feelings of nostalgia, why not think back to the origins of Pokémon in 1995? And more specifically, the fashion trends of the 1990s.

On that thought, I compiled 3 looks inspired by the 1990s. Denim, chokers and scrunchies alike! Sifting through high street shops I have managed to put together the looks that hold some of that 90s flare that so many love, with influences from the grunge scene and the culture, that you can wear while catching the Pokémon!

Look #1

Topshop Dungarees (£52)

 Romwe Striped Tee (£4.29- on sale)

 Asos White Trainers (£22)

 Asos Hair Bow (£5)

Skinny Dip Backpack (£38)

Look #2 

 

Black Converse (£45)

Romwe Tee (£7.16- on sale)

Boohoo Check Shirt (£16)

Boohoo Choker With Heart Pendant (£4)

Boohoo High Waist Distressed Boyfriend Jeans (£25)

Look #3

New Look Espadrille Sandals (£24.99)

Zara Check Skirt (£9.99)

 Asos Zip up crop Top (£14.00)

Asos Hair Scrunchie (£10)

‘I see now that the circumstances of one’s birth are irrelevant. It is what you do with the gift of life that determines who you are’

-Mewtwo