Double Up

With cruise collections showing and fashion weeks coming up, I’m looking back on the AW16 collections. There’s one trend that I think might last the test of time – well, maybe for more than one season.

Denim showed up everywhere. Double denim, layered jackets, embroidered denim, denim, denim, denim. It showed up in collections from Stella McCartney through to Cavalli. For example, look 8 from Stella McCartney’s AW16 collection.

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After Gucci’s pre-SS17 it is clear denim is here to stay a little longer. Embroidered and bleached denim featured across numerous men’s and women’s looks. For example, look 23.

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With summer on the way, what could be more perfect than a denim short or to throw on a denim jacket. To really nail the denim trend, double it up – but look a little cooler than Justin and Britney circa 2001. Here I’ve paired a pale, bleached denim shirt from New Look and high-waisted denim shorts from River Island, in a darker shade.

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My advice is to mix and match different shades of denim, or, if you’re brave enough to sport matching denim, a jacket or shirt and jeans, and keep the rest VERY simple – like J-Lo here.

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Paul Smith A/W ’16

On Sunday 21st February, I was lucky enough to view Paul Smith’s A/W 2016 collection at London Fashion Week. It took place in the Royal College of Physicians, providing a modern, architectural backdrop for the collection. The collection goes back to Paul’s roots with nods to new romance, modernising his past techniques and trademarks; tailoring, prints, paisley, embroidery, and, of course, stripes. The reinvention of the origins of the women’s collections can be shown through the parallels to the men’s A/W 2016 collection in colours, fabrics and shapes.
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I wore an All Saints patterned shirt, black Next jeans, Kurt Geiger heeled, navy suede chelsea boots, and a new season, textured black Paul Smith bomber jacket.
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Prints played a huge role in Paul Smith’s Autumn/Winter 2016 collection. The signature stripe has been reinvented in a modern way. Coats had raglan sleeves to give a rounded shoulder and a strong silhouette. Suit trousers were created in the likeness of bicycle breeches, elongated to add elegance. Jackets throughout the collection were double breasted.
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Apples, this seasons highlighted print, was scattered amongst the collection in different scales via embroidery, appliqué, and print. This returns back to Paul’s first photo print from the seventies and expresses Paul’s signature elevation of everyday elements.Processed with VSCOcam with kk2 presetProcessed with VSCOcam with kk2 presetIMG_6892

Other core prints include a deconstructed Paisley and psychedelic floral. Paisley could be seen embroidered and appliquéd onto backless dresses and coats. Dusky pink was, also, showcased as a key colour for this A/W. The backless dress was also created using a bold floral print. The floral print was also used more subtlety throughout the collection and was even seen amongst the accessories.
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Paul Smith, as always, showed his sense of humour. Partly through the clothes, and, also, running and skipping throughout the finale. He was, is, and always will be a total babe.IMG_6900paul smithIMG_6902

Zip It

This look showcases how to incorporate something small, like zips, into your outfit, without it becoming overbearing. Zips give an edge to your style, and can be used to contrast and balance a more feminine outfit, as can be show here.

The pink Topshop mini pelmet skirt and the pale blue H&M sleeveless blouse are the feminine aspects. These are balanced out by the on-trend check pattern of the skirt, the grey mottled jumper with Aztec detailing on the sleeve from Staring At Stars at Urban Outfitters, and the zips on the skirts, Miss Selfridge leather jacket, and Kurt Geiger heeled boots. The super-mini skirt requires thick black leggings underneath. This, paired with the other black features, provides another contrast to the feminine parts of the ensemble.

The repetition of zips creates a feature of them, whilst remaining subtle enough to not look silly.

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The Clothes Show 2015

So, I know it has been a while since I last posted. I have been very busy in the run up to Christmas, and I’ve been travelling in and out of London a fair bit too (posts to come).

Around two weeks ago I was lucky enough to go to The Clothes Show with my mum and sister. We used to go when I was still in school and as we got older, and busier, neglected to continue the tradition. However, this year, my sister was able to go as press, and took me and mum along for the ride. Shout out to Cosmopolitan. Now this year, I think we were all a bit reticent to get excited about going again. We were all a lot older, and didn’t have much shopping to get – we used to use it to buy Christmas shopping for friends etc. I was extremely surprised at how much of a great time I had. Obviously, we had a slightly different experience to usual, having access to areas and people we previously wouldn’t have had. But, nevertheless, I had forgotten how incredible the fashion show was. I have just recently been getting back into all things fashion, after my busy university schedule, and this only increased my excitement. That along with our mad dash to find some bargain shopping. Insider’s tip – everything gets further reductions on Tuesday, the last day of The Clothes Show. Whilst I think this is mostly a great spot for teenagers to go, it has been confirmed to me that it is definitely not exclusively for the younger girl group.

To begin with, we were taken to the press room, followed by a room full of goodies. Here I am testing out one of the options, and all of my freebies I came home with. Very exciting. My favourites are the Paul’s Boutique bag and ‘french toast’ pyjamas by MinkPink.

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We were then taken backstage where my sister interviewed Charlie XCX. Here we are messing around backstage where we saw Alice Levine, Joey Essex and, also, these sexy models.

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Then we had a little shopping time, where we bumped in MIC hottie Andy Jordan. We then sat with him in the VIP room (they got much better food!), whilst my sister interviewed MIC’s Jamie Laing on the neighbouring table. After a little more shopping, we then headed to the main event. Here, I’d like to say that most of these photos have no alterations. Most of the ones that do, only have a little sharpening to make the edges clearer. The worst photos here have actually undergone heavy filtering, and other touch-ups, but the original photos couldn’t be corrected entirely. Clearly, it was a good day of photography, or just a brilliant subject matter! The lesser quality photos were impeded by the movement or smoke provided by the incredible performance. It was certainly stunning in person, even if that couldn’t be captured in a couple of these pictures.

The show was split into different sections. ‘Earth’ depicted an African inspired collection. The strong looks were scattered with animal print, fur and tribal prints. Along with the whip/nae nae to add to the performance.

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Along with forecasting African influence as a trend, fishnets could be seen on the catwalk. This trend forecast was shown in both menswear and womenswear in the ‘Water’ collection. I’m sure by the time it reaches the high street, it will be a more wearable look.

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Futuristic, 60s inspired colour blocking was displayed. I have to say, I am a little bit in love with this. I love the neon bright colours, polka dots and shiny panelling. Sign me up right now. Wardrobe lust for the New Year is here.

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Sequins, glitter and all thinks sparkly were also showcased amongst the collections. This is potentially my favourite dress of the show. I love its modern structure. I also LOVE this coat but I’m not sure oversized, sparkly rucksacks with board shorts is going to catch on quite as much.

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There was a touch of cowboy-esque aesthetic on stage. Along with a nod to French influences with this beret.

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Some other absolute favourites of mine were these Perspex ponchos and shiny blue leotards, and this extravagant, futuristic tulle dress.

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This hyperbolic puffa jacket could be indicating a new trend.

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The ‘Red’ collection exhibited this beautiful sheer jumpsuit and absolutely incredible feather skirt. Flamenco dancers scattered the stage during this section, living up to the standards The Clothes Show has set for putting on a performance, not just a fashion show. Charlie XCX performed at the show, and even a Stormtrooper put in an appearance, showcasing some of his dance moves.

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Here are just a couple of amazing moments which showcase the great production and showmanship of this event.

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I am in absolute awe of this photograph, I have left it untouched. Not only does it represent the performance, through dancing, put on by The Clothes Show, but the movement captured in the skirt is a true representation of its elegance on stage. One of my top moments from the show.

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And, finally, here is a, slightly blurred, photo of the main outfits from each of the collections shown at The Clothes Show 2015.

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I know this has been an extremely long post, but I hope you made it to the end! This was an extremely narrowed down selection of photos from the day and I couldn’t bring myself to narrow it down anymore. I cut out some pictures of the celebrities we saw and met, and the amazing time we had there as press because I wanted to showcase the clothing in the fashion show. I would highly recommend going, even if it is just to see the show because it really is so fantastic every time I have been. The discounted prices on shopping – mostly beauty buys now – is just an extra.

All Black Everything

Wearing head-to-toe black has been dubbed as no-no by Anna Wintour. It can look one dimensional and boring but you can pull off this look without appearing too gothic or as if you are a funeral attendee. I think mixing fabrics, textures, colours, shapes and patterns makes for a more wearable version of most trends. When wearing all black, you may think mixing colours is off the cards, however, there are many different shades of black. Warm or cold. Dark or faded. Here I have paired a black, grid-patterned shirt, with a shiny, pleated skirt made from a disco pants-esque fabric. To complete the outfit, I teamed with black tights, black heeled ankle boots with slight stud detailing and a leather jacket. The accents of the small amount of studding on the boots and the zips on the jacket break up the head-to-toe black look. This, combined with the pattern on the shirt make the head-to-toe black look more wearable. While the mixture of fabrics add balance to the ensemble. Black is always the new black. IMG_5517IMG_5320

Yves Saint Laurent: Style Is Eternal

On the 11th of July I visited the Bowes Museum in Durham to see this amazing exhibition. With its close coming up in a week’s time, I wanted to write a post to recommend trying to squeeze it into your schedule. It really reignited my motivation to design. My love for fashion was never lost, but life always gets in the way of putting things into practice if you don’t actively make time for them. I became a spectator of my true passion whilst at university, only dabbling in it from time to time. This exhibition really inspired me to start sketching, sewing, writing, and styling again.

Whilst the clothes exhibited were beautiful, they weren’t my true inspiration. The embellishment was so beautifully intricate. I was in absolute awe of the skill involved and the delicacy displayed. You really saw the detail from swatches, and the overall effect could be seen from FABULOUS jackets and sparkly dresses.

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Looking at trays filled with multi-coloured buttons of all shapes and sizes, not one the same as another, sends your mind into overdrive.

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The stories of the designer and his ideas behind the clothing is a real eye-opener. You definitely learn unknowns about Yves Saint Laurent. He showed his love of fashion from a young age, making paper clothes to attach to a paper model. Adorable.

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His sources of inspiration were the most interesting to me. Some of the clothes clearly alluded to pop art, my favourite genre, not only in print but, also, in shape. It was, also, clear to see how the theatrics had influenced Yves Saint Laurent. More obviously with this lavish thespian dress, but can be seen from the extravagant pink-feathered show piece.

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As a feminist, I also loved his designs expressing female empowerment, such as the first female trouser suit – double-breasted and pin-striped no less.

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In the exhibition, you see sketches, fabric swatches, toiles, and of course clothes, showing his process from start to finish. Seeing the selection of toiles, in particular, has driven me back to regular sketching and sewing.

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And here’s a couple beautiful black and lace dresses for good measure. Take a look if you’re in the area before November 8th.

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Suit Up, Look Smart

The trouser suit is the perfect transitional trend. It suits multiple occasions, whilst keeping you warm. It can also work really well for a day-to-night outfit. No wonder so many celebs are donning this trend as the weather changes. Pair with a shirt for a smarter look, like Emma Watson’s monochromatic ensemble. She channels ‘less is more’ in a black suit with a white shirt.

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Try different colours and patterns to break the traditional work-suit look. Swapping the style of the jacket to longline or sleeveless, adds an edge to your suit. They look great with a cami, which also shakes up the usual combination. Here I’ve matched a navy suit from Mango with a pale green cami.

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Or lose the top all together for a sexier look. Rachel McAdams vamps up the sex appeal even more with a red two-piece.

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A suit is the perfect way to stay warm and look great. Smart is sexy.