Last month saw the 33rd year of the Afro Hair and Beauty Live show at Islington’s Business Design Centre, the biggest show of its kind in Europe. Knowing how big the UK black beauty market is (black women are said to spend six times more on hair and beauty), I intended to go to this but in the end had conflicting commitments. Instead, TOLU OGUNSOLA attended on my behalf and here she reports on her top three finds…
Just as I expected, I was greeted with a great buzzing atmosphere as I entered Afro Hair And Beauty Live. People were talking excitedly here, there and everywhere about what products they wanted to buy and blaring music further amped up the excitement for all involved. Natural hair has definitely taken off in the past year or so, with women of colour taking a vested interest in returning back to their roots as it were. Continue reading
I can’t say I’d ever get bored of the plain white shirt, but if I did, I know how I’d switch it up. Thanks to the team at MiH Jeans, I got the chance to try my hand at shibori, the ancient Japanese art of folding, pleating and twisting fabric to achieve mind boggling effects with indigo dye. Our teacher was the patient and all-round wonderful Niki Livingston, an artist who experiments with shibori from her studio in Los Angeles. Continue reading
What a month it’s been for Cruise shows! And it doesn’t stop, because today sees the first ever Louis Vuitton Cruise show, taking place in Monaco at 6pm GMT.
Cruise shows are clearly the new RTW and I don’t know whether to envy or pity the editors and VIPs being flown from one continent to another in this vast show of
excess newness and grandeur.
Pull up a pouffe next to me and watch the live stream here….
When it comes to immersive, experiential retail, you can’t really beat Harrods and its epic store takeovers. Chanel and Dior have had their turn and this month saw the unveiling of Pradasphere, a fusion of shop windows (40 in total), pop-up shop, cafe and exhibition.
The exhibition on the fourth floor is the big draw. It starts with glass cabinets telling the story of the beginnings of the 101-year-old brand. Originally purveyors of leathergoods, we’re shown vitrines of ancient paper packaging, handbag frames and luxurious vanity sets for the travelling classes. All give an air of revered Milanese shopkeeper to the proceedings, nicely bringing us back to retail. Continue reading
Wow, what a month May is looking to be for retail! Last week, Harrods opened its Pradasphere exhibition-café-shop-windows takeover, Fendi unveiled its 3-floor Bond Street flagship, Jigsaw’s Duke Street Emporium arrived in Mayfair and Selfridges just launched its summer ‘Beauty Project’.
An epic nationwide store concept (online and offline), The Beauty Project is a look at beauty, not just from a product point of view but in a wider sense, giving us experiential retail and discussions around how we see beauty. Continue reading
So best dressed from last night’s Met Gala? Gotta be Tabitha Simmons in Dolce & Gabbana and Hamish Bowles and his outstanding cape-work, no? Plus a shoutout is in order for Hamish Bowles’ top notch pap work on Instagram…
The DRG Style Index has a bit of an art theme running through it this week. Here’s my ranking of the brand stories that grabbed my attention…
1. GAP IS PARTNERING WITH FRIEZE ART FAIR
This year, Gap has partnered with Frieze New York (opening May 9th) and Frieze London to produce exclusive merchandise in a ‘white cube’ setting that will double as a café. A joint effort with Visionaire, the US collab will produce limited edition tees from the likes of Alex Katz (above), Richard Phillips and Peter Lindbergh. Continue reading
Here’s a great three-way collab that marries experiential retail with personalisation and a hand crafted approach to design. Last week, Jo Malone London invited me to experience its pop-up screen printing studio hosted by creative collective Calm & Collected. The arty foursome have designed special graphic labels for five of Jo Malone London’s favourite scents (yay, Pomegranate Noir is in there!) and as an added bonus the guys are screen-printing complementary boxes to go with. Continue reading
If you want a life affirming experience, tear yourself away from the computer and get thee to Henri Matisse: The Cut-Outs at Tate Modern. Comprising around 120 of Matisse’s fragile paper works, this is the first time this many of the iconic cut-outs have been shown together. The opportunity has not been wasted, with the works displayed in airy rooms that give ample space to these energetic and colourful pieces. Continue reading