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Thursday, 24 February 2011

From Door To Door

Last nights Fred Loves Fashion event was super fun, attended by some fabulous faces, including the designer Peter Jensen & James Baillie (creative director of the Lovebox festival)
I was drafted in by the legendary Mr Kenny Campbell to do the guestlist, Princess Julia was comparing the event, we had a live performance from The Fabulous Russella (what a voice!)

Legendary Princess Julia

Russella rocking some fierce heels
It was held @ Freds on Vyner St, (Fred Manns gallery space) and featured installations by Omar Kashoura, Berstock Spiers, Nelson Santos & Boudicca amongst others (I loved the Bernstock Spiers wall of bunny eared caps)
Bernstock Spiers

Omar Kashoura's installation
There were also three fashion shows: one from a Spanish designer called Factoria Rent Me (mens & ladies, she used prints & silks with fur & chain trims and religious references)

An amazing collection of corsetry from Sian Hoffman that was just sublime- really well constructed and executed, a perfect balance of beauty and edginess, I'd love to own one of these pieces

Sian Hoffman

And to close the show was menswear from A Child Of The Jago (which I missed because I was gossiping with Russella backstage) but here's a shot of the boys in their dressing room
Jago boys looking  dapper

Tonight will be another door shift for me - my regular gig at one of Londons best club nights- the inimitable Batty Bass
Batty Bass has been taking London by storm for the last 5 years, the night is hugely popular, and held on the first Thursday of every month at The Star Of Bethnal Green, E2.
Despite being on a school night we never fail to fill up that venue (I'm always amused by the sweaty, smilin faces stepping outside to smoke by 11pm)

Headed up by Hannah Holland (Trailer Trash) the Batty family is MAMA, the amazing Alex Noble is the Art Director, providing visuals and illustrations (Alex has been making waves recently due to his collaborations with Lady Gaga, not to mention his recent Selfridges window) Deboa, Keaton and has featured live performances & collaborations with Warboy, Andre J, My Bad Sister & FERAL to name but a few
Alex Noble towers over the other 'bright young things' @ Selfridges

Tonight is the album launch party (available to buy in Urban Outfitters) so we are all super excited (but then we are super excited every Batty) because it always, without fail totally goes OFF happy vibes and booty shaking guaranteed, its been said that Batty 'looks like a music video, feels like a house party'
The album will be available to buy on the door tonight, at a mere £5
our Ms Holland

For more on Batty Bass, click here

Wednesday, 23 February 2011

Horace, Copywrong & The Labour Of Love

The end of LFW officially, and I just came back from the Horace show at The Hospital Club.
Adam Entwistle, Emma Hales and Philip Grisewood showed their AW11 collection in a huge dark room, with a square marked out in gaffer tape in the center for us all to stand in, facing a screen onto which a montage of images was projected, featuring atom bombs, crowds, fast food and production lines, interspersed with Grisewood's graphics of triangles, cubes & prisims combining to make 3D isometric block illusions.
The models came out of a door to our left, and walked around the taped off area, posing at the end in front of the screen, which made for some interesting pattern mixes.

The ever present Vitamin Water gets given the glow stick treatment
I loved the banana print, and the dress with the skeletal type overlay (skeletons are a re-occuring reference point for me) there was also some lovely stud detailing on the leather jackets.
Black dominated the colour pallette, and there was a definete grunge vibe about the collection which fused tribal influences with a dystopian feel.
I think they were spot on to show the collection alongside the video - brands like Horace should be exhibited in engaging, challenging ways that feel part art installation part catwalk
The lack of front row seating (and all the politics that go with it) certainly helped cement the egalitarian vibe.

On the way home I read in the Evening Standard about the artist Marc Quinn and his spat with Wunderkind, over use of his floral paintings, without permission in their collection.
The paintings in question frankly look like the kind of pre-framed tat you can pick up in any branch of Ikea for around £20, so quite why Wunderkind were silly enough (if in fact they did) to use them, is beyond me, they could have picked up near identical photographs out of any copyright free book.

There was also an article about unpaid internships at museums & art gallerys, and about how unfair it is that people often have to work for nine months, free of charge, and how its exploitation really....erm, hello, how do they think the fashion industry operates??
If it wasn't for the unpaid workforce in fashion not only in London, but Paris, NY & Milan, the industry would grind to a halt.
With something like 800 students a year graduating, and all prepared to work for their favorite designers free of charge - sometimes for years - there is always a fresh batch of the eager and willing available
Of course they don't get totally nothing- they get credits, which then enable them to go onto jobs that actually do pay (although ironically its the bargain end of the high street that pays the highest) or gain enough knowledge to set up on their own
See also styling- even established stylists still do the odd free editorial shoot for certain cool, credible magazines which then enable them to get the big commercial jobs that do pay- but that no PR company wants to lend clothes for (so they have to bend the truth & hope is passes unnoticed)
The article further cemented my belief that the fashion industry really is the hardest in the world, this business of beauty is often very ugly on the inside, nepotism rules over talent and the amount of free and ludicrously long hours people are often made to work is astounding
(can't see an accountant putting in 15 hours per day, six days a week, can you? but I could tell you now of half a dozen fashion brands where this is commonplace)
So why do we do it?
Love. Love is the reason we put in the hours, loose sleep, and give our all. That or insanity...the jury is out.

Tuesday, 22 February 2011

Basso & Brooke

Had a nice low key weekend, of mainly eating & watching movies with The Boy, during which I sent my friends Bruno Basso & Chris Brooke a message to confirm my attendance for their show on Monday morning, and to offer an extra pair of hands, should they need one

I was really inspired by the trousers in Fist Of Fury (Bruce Lee)...I'm feeling the Karate vibe for SS12....(something we have seen coming through Celine, Alexander Wang & Haider Akermann last season)

He snoozed through Desperately Seeking Susan on Sunday (my all time favorite movie, I was utterly obsessed with Madonna from this point onwards)
Ah the boots..the boots...I still want these boots....

Nerfertiti- no shit!

I don't know why, but I woke up at 2.03am I get a text from Chris- could I come and help out actually, they are a dresser down, 7.30 call time (I think it was like the Bat-signal, my instinct for a fashion emergency finely tuned) of course, no problem
So off I trotted to Somerset House, very excited to see the new collection- the maxi dresses and trouser suits being my favorites (such a shame they will be about 2 feet too long for me to actually wear)

The boys have a fantastic attitude to their collections, and love nothing more than to see them being worn and enjoyed (too right, such amazing garments have a right to life)....there is a vintage shop in E2 holding a pair of Chanel brogues with my name all over them, the poor things are in a glass cabinet - denied the right to be adopted (my me) and taken home and loved forever...its a crime....and they would actually go very well with this shirt from SS11 that they very kindly lent me for Brunos birthday party last month....but I digress....
It had cute little tailored shorts in the same print, worn with black opaque tights & black wedges, my bag was vintage hard barrel snakeskin, with a coyote tail hanging off it (looked like a beheaded squirrel)

The collection was stunning- bang on colour pallette of teals and burnt oranges, camel and dove greys, with flashes of red and jewel greens the prints had a camouflage feel about them, and reminded me of exotic birds like Manderin ducks. The collection was cut with clever twists and gathers, elegant & modern, the perfect balance of newness and wearability that is so often lacking with London designers (a lot of whom tend to rely on shock tactics to grab the headlines) and used beautiful luxurious fabrics of silk jerseys, double faced wools & georgettes.

I love the row of models, in all their prints, with a row of hair & MUA's- all in black- doing touch ups

hooded coat adjustments 
Some of these were eaten

Monday, 21 February 2011

You Must Be Jerkin.....

Just another Manic Monday, too tired to blog about, I can barely type for now I give you this
Liz Hurley Beef Jerky......what?!!


Thursday, 3 February 2011

LCF MA show @ the V&A

My good friend Letitia and I went to the LCF MA show last night at the V&A
What an amazing standard of work was presented, and a surprising amount of menswear (don't they know they only get about a third of the amount of money womenswear designers do from NEWGEN and the like?!)

My personal favorites were: Asger Larsen- who presented a very well considered combination of classic mens dress styles - dress/biker/military/sports- accessorised with some seriously sexy headwear that reminded me of Piers Atkinson (think unexpected spike and chain placements)
Tim Rhys-Evans: very sexy, ladylike womenswear in black, he played with textures such as PVC against polka dot wool, crepe, chiffon and marabou trim, and produced a very wearable and directional collection - which was actually quite commercial in places (in a good way)
Dinu Bodiciu:  womenswear collection in nude and red was reminiscent of Margiela (probably due to the accentuated shoulder silhouette) loved the jumpsuit in the middle

Tatwasin Boat Khajeenikorn's menswear collection featured intricate embellishments of beading and crystals and a pallette of primarily nude shades which had us drooling.

There were some amazing umberellas in Jia Ju's tailoring heavy collection (provided by Oliver Ruuger)- these are the kind of umbrellas that will make you pray for rain, perfect for the UK market, so if anyone knows where I can buy one.....
in fact a lot of the students collections featured tailoring (looks like my obsession with tailcoats has finally caught on ;) ) including the winner of Collection Of The Year Matteo Molinari who presented a slickly tailored, Matador inspired collection with an amazing crochet back cropped jacket I could
easily see girls rocking...

Yan Liang & Chang Wook 'Jay' Kang both presented playful collections, featuring wood formica & digital and hand painted clashing prints respectively- so nice to see students really have fun in their collections (before they get into industry and have it knocked out of them in the name of being commercial)

Also re-occurring were: cropped trousers, multiple pleating, rounded shoulder shapes, built up necklines- either hidden under collars, padded in chiffon or wrapped up in wools, black, grey & metallic (Louise Simmonds showed fab aqua metallic chevron stripes on her tailoring) Crochet detailing- either built in or snaking around frames

Oliver Ruuger's curled handle horsehair trimmed umberellas