I was invited to a debut collection catwalk event last week for Vanessa G. I'll be honest, I didn't know a huge amount about her, but the venue alone made me take notice. The invite, which arrived etched onto red perspex, said Banqueting House, Whitehall. That was the location for Julien Macdonald's SS11 catwalk show and after that beautiful show I knew I had to go back there.
The event itself was hugely big-budget with plenty of familiar faces like Konnie Huq, Sophie Ellis Bextor and Jade Parfitt to name but a few. In fact, I had no idea of the spectacle that was to greet us when we actually sat down in the specially constructed seating to view towering video projections. Being outside Fashion Week gave the organisers the luxury of time to keep editors and VIPs in their company for far longer to watch what turned into a multimedia presentation. Models walked with attitude, passed through hidden doors, acted out with props, videos played in the background and then we were played out to a band playing pretty much in the rafters.
But what of the clothes you ask? Well, I thought the whole thing was very slick and pieces incredibly wearable. It may not have blown high fashion lovers away but I like to see myself in a garment and Vanessa G did strike a good balance between aspiration and practicality. The collection reflects unique pieces of art by unsung artists which have been transformed into what the brand hopes will become timeless collectables. Garments are hand painted, hand crafted and hand finished to give that all-important luxury touch.
Press release snippet: "Leading Indian designer Ashish N Soni has come on board the Vanessa G luxury brand as the Chief Design Officer. His primary responsibility is to interpret the confluence of both these equally rich disciplines, to act as an advisor and guide the brand within its concept. He aims to translate and filter the passion and vision of Vanessa G into ready to wear and ensure the art remains not just in the creation of the garment, but in the overall essence of each piece."
Personally I loved the Erdem-esque florals albeit with a black core palette. Bright reds and limes gave to collection a striking element of contrast while the gorgeous coats and dresses were instant additions to the wish-list. It wasn't all new or incredibly original but it was very pretty, feminine and as a collection hung together pretty well. The contrasts were reflected in the story of the collection as we saw it too, from the flora and fauna to the noisy cityscape. It's nature brought into the modern woman's world.
I was gutted that I had to leave straight after the event as the drinks and canapés were fabulous. Treats included Quail's egg with salt and gold leaf, rose petals in cocktails and smoked salmon. Delicious! I have to say a thanks for the gorgeous scarf that was gifted in the goodie bag too. It shows the beautiful prints from the collection and will serve as a reminder of a designer to watch and a fabulous evening out too. View more pics below...