Showing posts with label LFW. Show all posts
Showing posts with label LFW. Show all posts

Friday, September 24, 2010

LFW Round Up

First stop this LFW was the PPQ show on Friday night. Last time around, even if you didn’t rate the clothes on the runway, at least the crowd was sufficiently sozzled to enjoy it all. This time, there were no free drinks which made for a slightly less merry time. Making up the front row were Paloma Faith, Little Boots, Eliza Doolittle and The Like ( I still remain completely baffled by their reinvention as a Sixties-inspired girl band.. not a good look). Half the audience seemed to be chanelling Issie Blow with bunny and Mickey Mouse ears, boaters, veils and bows all blocking the view. On the catwalk were lots of eighties combinations of tropical colours mixed with animal and mosaic prints, awkwardly accessorised with fez hats.

The fash pack went off the beaten track for the Matthew Williamson show at Battersea Power Station, the first ever designer to host a presentation at the derelict building. I could see the fashion crowd looking slightly panicked as they travelled further away from the centre of the city to this empty shell on the edge of town. A glass ceiling and white catwalk were set in the heart of this empty shell for the show, with the iconic towers an impressive backdrop. Unfortunately, the underwhelming collection failed to match the glorious setting. Matthew’s muse for this season was a girl marooned on a fantasy desert island – who just happens to have a suitcase, filled with cargo pants, safari blouses, and wide trousers and shorts with parachute-like billowing gowns her. Handy, that. Spotted front row: Sienna Miller (finally! – she’s gorgeous and glowing and tiny) Valentine Fillol Cordier, Olivia Palermo and my LFW crush for this season, Josephine de la Baume.NOK

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

LFW Roundup

The Chambord is in our champagne which can only mean one thing – fashi week has come around again. For our first day, we focused on the shows rather then the parties – which was a first for The Portmanteau. John Rocha never fails to thrill and for AW 10 he produced another beautiful collection. Standout pieces were the opening look, a richly textured black dress, and a breathtaking draped cream silk goddess gown that lightened the beautiful gloom.

PPQ was less successful where the main source of inspiration for the collection seemed to be ‘80s window treatments – think lots of velvet, brocade and tassles. Usually PPQ excels in attracting a stellar front row and fun atmosphere but the lineup here was rather dismal with Pixie Lott and Dancing on Ice judge Jason Gardiner hogging the spotlight.

I took a day off from all things fashi on Sunday with a 24 hour jaunt to the motherland to see Gaga at the O2 (amazing) and to have a nostalgic run around the Wax Museum (so bad that it's actually pretty amazing too). Arriving back at the dawn on Monday morning didn't deter me from heading out to the Elle Style Awards party that night, although I both looked and felt like a zombie. The Alexa/ Pixie / Agy crew were out in force dancing to Supergrass side-project The Hot Rats with Pearl and Daisy Lowe making it a very family affair. Abbey Lee Kershaw was looking oh so ‘9os in velvet and dark brown lippie while Alexa, wearing Chanel, swapped her usual choppy bob for a tousled bouffant. I approve. It was also nice to see some international faces like Dree Hemingway, Olivia Palermo and Julia Restoin-Roitfeld in the house to break up the usual monotony of Geldof offspring sightings. Hot guy of the night: JR-R’s gorgeous model boyf, Robert Konjic with designer Erdem Moralioglu a close second. NOK

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Fashi Week Faves

London Fashion Week’s 25th birthday was celebrated in style – some amazing collections, top drawer celebrity attendees and Anna Wintour in the front row. Yup, they did good and it seems like there’s going to be plenty to look forward to in Spring/Summer 2010 (2010 – scary, eh? And what are we going to call that decade? The tennies? The tens? The teens? The tweens?). But before we look at the double denim, sheer blouses and candy colours that we’re all going to be sporting next year, let’s take a moment to remember our fave moments from LFW SS10.

Favourite Accessory – The Claddagh Crown at John Rocha

We’ve never been fans of Claddagh rings and we just don’t get that heart facing outwards if you're single thing, but Claddagh crowns are something that we can get behind. Crowns are always flattering and the Irish connection just makes them extra special.

Favourite Freebie – The Charles Anastase Bag

The Matches pop up shop at Somerset House was selling canvas totes and lovely, soft t-shirts with designs from some of London’s best-loved designers printed on them. At the Charles Anastase show, all the attendees were gifted with his Matches tote, which features a beautiful swan print. Such a chic addition to the stuffed cupboard full of bags-that-you’re-supposed-to-bring-to-Tesco-but-always-forget.

Favourite Party Guest – Sanjay at Mulberry

The Mulberry party at Claridge’s was jam-packed with celebs: Tinsley Mortimer, Lara Stone, Pixie G, David Walliams, Sarah Harding, etc, etc. But Sanjay from Eastenders was our fave. We’ve spied him at fashion bashes before but this time we plucked up the courage to talk to him. We wondered why he comes to these things, especially as he seems to always be alone. The answer’s simple. “I just can’t turn invitations down!” he told us. And what’s he doing these days, we asked. Film, theatre or TV? “Both,” he said emphatically. Okay.

Best Front Row Guest – Anna Wintour/Henry Conway
Sorry, it’s impossible to choose between these two. Obviously it was a thrill to see Ms. Wintour in the flesh (bones?) at Peter Pilotto but spotting the almost-as-skinny-these-days Henry Conway was equally exciting. He’s toned it down style-wise (gone are the huge hats and ruffled cravats) but we like his new spiffing look just as much.

Favourite Model – The dog at the Mulberry Presentation

The all-black casting at the PPQ show was a much-needed nod to diversity and we were also very fond of the beautiful big-browed Maja at Charles Anastase, but top dog for us was the, eh, dog at Mulberry. So so pretty and adorably unsure of her moves. Plus she’s the only one that you know for sure doesn’t have an eating disorder.

Favourite Canapés – Pret a Manger sandwiches and Sprites

Okay so they’re not strictly a canapé but the regular ingestion of crayfish and rocket sandwiches from Pret was essential for our mental and physical well-being. They must, of course, be washed down with a refreshing Sprite. As regards actual canapés, we loved the candy floss and mini-burgers at the Mulberry party. LE

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Away We Go

We had been considering abstaining from LFW this season. Not to sound ungrateful but sometimes it does get a bit much. Being so tired and stressed that you burst into tears in front of your boss (yes, that was my particular highlight of Spring Summer 09). And the flat does begin to resemble a hostel and everyone gets really cranky by the last day.

But in spite of our best efforts to resist, we found ourselves drawn into the circus. We have to admit it, the night before it all kicks off does feel a little like Christmas Eve. First stop on Day 2 was John Rocha at Somerset House – always a must see for The Portmanteau and we were ecstatic to see Henry Conway on the front row. The show was beautifully whimsical and romantic– high points were a parade of dresses with endless tiers of ruffles in peach, nude and turquoise (which reminded me a lot of Giles SS08's shredded leaf dresses ) and sheer blouses edged with pearls. It also featured some incredible structured bell-shaped dresses made of stiff crochet. A catwalk appearance from Iekeliene Stange and Claddagh-inspired crowns topped it all off. As ever with John Rocha, there was a great familial feeling at the show and lovely music, finishing up with a finale soundtracked by Beirut. NOK

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Day One

So LFW kicked off today and I set myself up for the day with a hearty breakfast at the Covent Garden Hotel with Ruth Griffin of Matches, who had invited some London-based bloggers and online media types - Grazia, the Vogue blog, Mademoiselle Robot, Net A Porter, The Portmanteau, et al - to help celebrate the launch of the Matches pop up shop at Somerset House. Over Eggs Benedict, French toast, and porridge for the more abstemious, we discussed our schedules for the next four days and plotted to introduce a London version of the Fashion Bloggers’ Brunch. I only squeezed in two shows this evening and I still haven’t gotten around to getting glasses so I’m probably not the best person to rely on for in-depth analysis. But although things were blurry I did manage to spot Michelle Williams (not the cool one; the Destiny’s Child one) at Bora Aksu. And on the catwalk: lots of pink and black lace dresses and sequinned leggings. Twiggy and Kimberley Stewart were the front row VIPs at Sass and Bide, where chainmail and metallic embellishment adorned flowing cream frocks and short bodycon dresses. I’ll endeavour to squint harder tomorrow so as to bring you more detailed reports. Promise. LE

Eggs Benedict

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Busy Busy Busy

Posting has been scarce on the ground recently. Sorry about that but we’ve been busy. Back in the halcyon days of June, I’d get up at midday, wander down to Paul for a coffee, slowly make my way to Westfield for a browse and a trip to Waitrose before settling down for an evening of TV-watching or magazine-reading. On really stressful days I might meet somebody for lunch or go to the pub. Well no more. I’ve been interning and freelancing like crazy. (Check out my interview with RJ Cutler, director of The September Issue, here, and be in with a chance to win tickets to Richard Nicoll by reading a Q & A with him here.)

And now Fashion Week is upon us. I feel the bi-annual Fashi Week nervous breakdown coming on – you know, the point where you collapse in a flood of tears, usually in front of your boss, because you’re just so tired as a result of the shows and the parties and the frantic paranoia-about-not-being-stylish-enough-induced shopping sprees. Not to mention that we actually must maintain day jobs throughout. But whatevs, we love it really and will be sure to blog about anything we are lucky enough to get invited to. LE

Thursday, February 26, 2009

London Fashion Week Party Roundup

On Sunday night, pepped up on Red Bull and Nurofen (Daphne Guinness's party essentials), we headed to the Mac party in honour of makeup artists Charlotte Tilbury and Sharon Dowsett at The Hospital Club. Laura Bailey, Jasmine Guinness, Liberty Ross, Nicholas Hoult and Tamsin Egerton were all in attendance as were Fashion Week perennials, Jo Wood and Ben Grimes. There were generous supplies of both champagne and canapés - mini shepherds pies, smoked trout on blinis and teeny-tiny toad in the holes. It is safe to say that Laura Bailey didn't eat the canapés - I came face to clavicle with her at one point (I'm that small) and it was one of the boniest chests I've ever laid eyes on. Disappointingly there were no goody bags. We had been greedily and somewhat prematurely guessing what Mac treats we were going to get, so I suppose it serves us right that we walked away with diddly-squat.

We continued Sunday night with a trip to the Christopher Kane/10 Magazine party at Jalouse on Hanover Square. We didn't spot any familiar faces, probably due to the fact that the venue was very dark and we were very drunk. Yes, the champagne from the Mac party combined with the amazing cocktails on offer at Jalouse meant that things got a little hazy from then on. We tried to sober up by guzzling canapés but the waiters started to avoid our table in an effort to make sure that some other party goers got a shot at the food. From there, we drunkenly progressed to the Todd Lynn party at Bureau in Kingly Court and then on to Cafe de Paris for the remnants of the PPQ bash. We topped things off with a late night Big Mac and strawberry milkshake before hopping aboard the night bus.

Four parties in one night kind of killed me so I was a bit more selective on Monday. First stop was the rather lacklustre International Party hosted by the British Fashion Council. An Anna Piaggi sighting was the only highlight so it was on to the Mulberry soiree at their store on Bond St. Lots of the usual suspects here again: Poppy Delevigne, Jodie Harsh, Jacquetta Wheeler et al but the biggest scene stealers were a bunch of mad hatters fresh from the Stephen Jones opening at the V&A.

We wrapped up the week with the House of Holland shindig at Quaglino's. Peaches and Blake Wood (who only seems to exist during fashion week) were just leaving as we arrived - a good or bad sign, I wasn't sure. The venue resembled a cruise ship and the bright lighting was not very welcome after a week of fash bashes. I feared that it wouldn't be a patch on the HOH after party last September. In the end though it was hooray for Henry as the boy pulled it out of the bag with a little help from his friends. Corey Kennedy and Leigh Lezark made the trip across the pond for the bash and Kanye gave an impromptu performance, rapping along to American Boy. Then it was time for Henry to hit the decks with Agy providing support. I may not share the boy's taste in clothes but musically, we are completely in sync. All my faves were on the setlist - M.I.A., Vampire Weekend, Kim Wilde and my personal theme tune, George Harrison's I Got My Mind Set On You. I mean, who cares about Kanye in the house when you're dancing to GA's Sexy! No No No - although for attending more shows and parties than anyone else, the inaugural Roisin Murphy award for indefatigable fashion week spirit must go to Mr. West.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Late Registration

The best thing about attending the Vivienne Westwood Red Label show is that you don't have to take it very seriously. It's just not serious fashion - so that means no pretentious press release on your chair explaining the deeper meaning behind the clothes, no earnest fashion journos scribbling furiously front row. It's just a bit of a laugh really. LFW can make you a tad blase about celeb sightings and we were a bit underwhelmed by the turnout here - Lily Cole, Erin O'Connor, David Walliams - and the venue - the draughty and cavernous National Hall at Olympia, possibly the least glamourous place you could ever hold a fashion show. But then we saw the flashbulbs and heard the shouts from the paps, "Oh my God, it's KANYE!!" That definitely perked us up and made us forget that the show was starting over an hour late.  It's always good to see a fellow fashion blogger in attendance. 

The invitation was a school report card which hinted at what we could expect. Indeed, when the show finally got underway, it was clear Dame Viv had gone all St. Trinians on us with a roll call of naughty BrIT schoolgirls (Daisy Lowe, Alice Dellal, Eliza Cummings) and wronged wife Jo Wood leading the pack as a saucy headmistress, showing Ronnie what he's missing. Take that, Ekat! As for the clothes: most looks were a twist on the school uniform - blazers emblazoned with crests, ties, stripy scarves. Otherwise, it was a mix of Westwood signatures: tailoring, tartan, pirates and corsetry. For her bow, Viv was joined by her gang of girls, dancing and celebrating like it was the last day of school.

Monday, February 23, 2009

My Day Out at LFW!

We've spent the last few days in a flurry of shows and parties, peppered with trips to the McDonalds on Leicester square and the occasional jaunt to Tesco Holland Park to pick up some necessities like wine and Krispy Kremes. I had never actually been to a show before Saturday but I quickly threw my newbie status out the window, attending four in one day. First up was John Rocha where there were some familiar Irish faces in the audience - fellow blogger Annmarie O'Connor was present as were Deirdre McQuillan and stylist Celestine Cooney. Things got off to a sober start as models dressed all in black took to the catwalk, but in amongst these sombre offerings were playful details like sparkling detachable collars and capes and exaggerated shoulders which lent the dresses both a Victorian and futuristic feeling at the same time. The introduction of colour - peaches and bright reds - along with the abundance of luxurious furs made sure that the initial austerity was soon forgotten.

Over at Armand Basi, bright colours were a rarity with various shades of grey making up the palette. Models stomped down the catwalk in oversized wool coats and harem pants that took things that bit further, i.e. below the knee, than we've previously seen. Roisin Murphy who wore Armand Basi to the Elle style awards last week was there to lend support to designer Markus Lupfer. After Armand Basi, I headed to a warehouse in Marylebone for the Peter Jensen show. Huge, unusually shaped bags, which I had seen at both John Rocha and Armand Basi appeared again, but this time they were bright orange and purple in keeping with Jensen's colourful and playful theme. Things got a little spooky when straight afterwards Ann-Sofie Back sent pale little waifs down the catwalk to the kind of soundtrack that usually accompanies the paranormal shows my sister watches on Living. The ghostly models walked deliberately and creepily slowly, giving us ample time to admire the witchy pointy-toed boots, the feather accessories and sweatshirts with slogans like Boo and God Bless!

My other The Portmanteau half was lucky enough to score a ticket to the Vivienne Westwood show on Saturday evening so I'm sure she'll fill you in on that once the hangover has subsided (a result of a night of hard partying - more deets to follow).

John Rocha

Peter Jensen

Ann-Sofie Back

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Packing Up

I am frantically trying to cram all my outfits into a carry-on case in preparation for my trip to London tomorrow. Why on earth did I think that carry-on was a good idea? Yes, I am only going for three days but one needs a lot of options for London Fashion Week - there is nothing like parties filled to the brim with skinny London hipsters to make a person feel insecure about her OF choices. And all this decanting shampoo into mini-bottles and stuffing knickers into shoes is not for me. And how I am going to fit my goody bag loot into the suitcase on the way home?

Actually, who am I kidding? I probably won’t go to any London hipster parties and the chances of me scoring goody bags are pretty slim. Most likely I’ll just spend the weekend glued to my other The Portmanteau half’s TV (an uncommon luxury for a television-less moi) and blow all my sterling at Whole Foods on Kensington High Street. But I promise that we will try our best to blag our way into the shows, the parties and the presentations so that we can report back on A/W 09 fashion and celebrity sightings.