Wednesday, 30 March 2011
I'm really excited to be doing some beginners blogger tutorials at Westfield Shopping Centre tomorrow evening and Saturday afternoon. I'll be showing some bloggers a few hints and tips that I've picked up along my blogging travels and I might find time to do a little window shopping too. Unfortunately spaces were limited so it's all filled up but feel free to pop along anyway, there's lots going on.
The tutorials are all part of the Big Fashion Wardrobe event happening this week at the shopping centre. From Tuesday 29 March to Sunday 3 April, Westfield is taking the glamour of the fashion world and inviting you to experience a journey through every touch point of a fashion house. This ranges from being in a 'fashion cupboard' full of fabulous clothing and accessories to getting a hair and beauty makeover. It also involves creative fashion writing, modelling for a photo shoot and ending the experience with a catwalk finale. What's not to love about that?
There's lots more going on this week and throughout the year. View the latest offers and events at Westfield
Quick event summary...
Go Fashion- The Walk in Wardrobes, 10 bespoke wardrobes, from high street to luxury brands including, River Island, French Connection, Reiss, DKNY Jeans, Jaegar, House of Fraser, Ted Baker, Firetrap LK Bennett, NW3 and Uniqlo to name a few.
Go Style – The Hair & Beauty Makeover, Make-up artists from The Make-Up Store will be applying their expertise in the colour palettes of the season while Toni & Guy will be going all out with blow-out bar showing shoppers,
Go Front Cover – The Photo Shoot. Aspiring models can enter a super stylish photographic studio, complete with a photographer, fans and picture-perfect lighting.
Go Blog – The Scoop. Enter the media suite, complete with super stylish laptops and Wi-Fi where budding writers can report on their journey at The Big Fashion Wardrobe from favourite fashion finds to newly discovered trends and beauty reviews. This is where I'll be doing my sessions.
Go BHF – British fashion model Daisy Lowe has partnered with the British Heart Foundation’s ‘Mending Broken Hearts Appeal’ to help raise awareness of the heart charity’s life-changing project to mend damaged hearts. Daisy Lowe will launch her very own Lomography photographic exhibition depicting symbols of hope.
Go Catwalk - On Saturday 2nd and Sunday 3rd April, the event will culminate in a fashion show showcasing over 70 of Westfield London’s most sought-after brands. Four live fashion shows each day will repeat over the weekend showcasing the finest fashion from spring summer’s top trends.
For the latest news and offers follow Westfield London’s twitter @westfieldlondon
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...
Thursday, 24 March 2011
Saturday, 19 March 2011
Thursday, 17 March 2011
Going up 2 cup sizes after a bra fitting certainly makes you pay a bit more attention to your bust. So when I was invited to discover more about a clothing range designed with the bust in mind I was intrigued.
Pepperberry launches on 21 March and it's a bit of a revolution for the fuller busted among us. Garments are available in sizes 8 - 18 with three fits tailored for the size of your bust. They've coined these fits curvy, really curvy and super curvy - and it's easy to understand why the word curvy is so important. Curvy has positive connotations with the term being associated with starlets like Christina Hendricks who has a figure loved by men and women alike.
The curvy fit is very similar to usual garments you'd find on the high street which means the range doesn't exclude those with a proportional bust. What it does also offer is a better fitting wardrobe for anyone who usually struggles to get things that fit them well. The way that clothing is designed and made means that it's only the bust area that is sized larger - the arms, back and waist will be your normal size. Hurrah for not having to buy 2 sizes bigger just because you have boobs.
I definitely think there's a big market for this clothing and clearly so do they. The way they've sized the garments remind me of the Levi's Curve ID jeans. The best thing is that the clothing isn't just basics, the collection has a strong nod to the trends of the moment but with practicality in mind like wider straps on dresses so you can easily wear a bra under dresses. Other tops are designed so a strapless bra can be attached to the straps of the top - a canny idea. I was impressed by how much attention is paid to patterns and getting every size right to ensure that the styles flatter those with larger boobs as much as those without much up top.
After a browse through the rails, a trend presentation, champers and cupcakes I was more than convinced that the range was a good idea and I'll be interested to watch it grow. I'll be trying out a piece from the range once it launches so pop back soon for a proper review.
Wednesday, 16 March 2011
Last night I headed along to an event at the Oxford Street Mango store. The promise was workwear inspiration and along with Stylist Magazine, they certainly did that.
We were shown and talked through several different workwear looks from the more casual.funky jumpsuit and heels ideal for a creative laid-back office to the twist on the classic interview suit in a palette of neutrals rather than 'boring' black.
The aim it seemed was to show us what workwear could be... whether it was to introduce more colour or trends into that wardrobe, or to be taken more seriously or dress for a promotion. There were a few red herrings in there - a low cut maxi dress being the one that stands out, but by and large it was a great range of clothing that I would love to have in my working wardrobe.
I loved some of the fab fitted jackets in the tailored, nautical inspired rail. Others headed straight for those 70s key shapes and prints to give more of a effortless look which I think really suits willowy frames.
The collaboration for Mango and Stylist Magazine will become evident through a series of advertorials and a competition... you could win your very own office party, £50 to spend at Mango for you and 40% off for your friends and colleagues. There are 20 parties up for grabs so it's well worth entering. Enter the competition on Mango's Facebook page.
I was asked to take inspiration from the rails of key looks to style my own outfit. We had a few giggles trying to get everything on the mannequins - my few days covering in the Debenhams merchandising department obviously didn't prepare me for that. After a few limbs had been removed and replaced, my outfit was revealed. I played pretty safe with Capri style navy trousers, a white ruffle vest and a tied lightweight denim shirt. I accessorised the outfit with a nautical inspired bag, red and natural wedges and a bright red and gold necklace.
Let me know what you think - almost all the other girls went for a more feminine, floaty skirt look which I loved too.
More pics from the event below...
Racoon International hair extensions at Bernard Chandran AW11
Sunday, 13 March 2011
One of the biggest trends for Spring was colour blocking and although a lot of people have been doing it top to toe, there's a subtle way to work the look - with your shoes. For the office, the weekend or a night on the tiles, shoes are one easy way to wear colour. When the colour isn't close to the face you really don't have to stick to the colours that suit you best - anything goes. Loads of brands have got on board with the trend and there's something to suit all budgets too.
Saturday, 12 March 2011
Everyday luxury... a concept that we can all relate or aspire to. I love My-Wardrobe with a passion so when I got the email with their new style guide magazine in it I read the thing from cover to cover.
As much as I love ogling all the gorgeous clothes and accessories, my favourite feature was on the very last page - The New Buzzwords. This is the need-to-know vocab that fashionista's should know about this season. Simsonite, The Marcel, Mulmerry... you'll have to head on over and take a look at the Style Guide to decipher some of them. There are some great editorials in the guide from cork wedge shoes and must-have handbags to key pieces for the seventies look.
The product I love above all others in the guide though is The Mulberry Alexa bag in a spring shade of watermelon. Great for working the season's colour block trend and in a style that has already become hugely popular among celebrities and shopaholics alike.
View the Style Guide now
Wednesday, 9 March 2011
I was excited to get this press release in my inbox today, the lead singer of one of my favourite bands ever has been signed up as the face of Sebastian Professional's Colour Ignite range. Maja Ivarsson of The Sounds has a stage presence that's not easy to come by and she never goes on stage without her heels, make-up and some serious attitude! I don't know why, but it surprised me that the brand has collaborated with her - I'm really glad they have though.
The new specialist professional color care products offers two custom-tailored formulas designed according to the color techniques used – SINGLE TONE for single tone colored hair and MULTI TONE for multi-tonal and lightened hair. The shampoos and conditioners come in a light whipped texture for easy and even coverage on all hair too. You can copy the looks from Maja's photoshoot with Sebastian's get the look feature.
Oh, and there's a new Sounds album coming out soon, watch this space.
When I'm not shopping I'm talking about shopping and when I give myself a shopping ban I have to think of all the things I want to buy when the ban is lifted. Hence my monthly wishlist feature where I say what I will be (and would love to be) spending my pennies on...
It's a little bit of the catwalk for your make-up bag and the colours are a refreshing twist on the usual hues available. From 21 March look out for flyers in selected stores where you'll be able to enter for a chance to win VIP Lovebox tickets, hotel stay, shopping spree and the Sandstorm collection too.
4. Buckle Detail Wedge Sandal - Matalan - £18
Even on a spending ban I reckon I could sneak these through the net... I've been looking for some wedges for summer and I think these are the ones.
Something, anything, everything... enough said.