Tag Archives: press days
Here’s the latest weekly DRG STYLE INDEX ranking, a round-up of the brands currently buzzing on my radar…
1. PORTS 1961 GETS A REFRESH
I was invited to the Ports 1961 press day last week to see the debut womenswear collection by new creative director Natasa Cagalj. The brand is undergoing a bit of a reinvention thanks to Cagalj, who is set on delivering wearable, adaptable wardrobe solutions for women. She’s doing this with fantastic coats, jackets and shirts that have a little bit of masculinity in their tailored construction but not too much. I also loved her styling. She has paired these cool, intelligent pieces with idiosyncratic footwear and hats, such as the knotty skate shoes (‘a nod to Romeo Gigli’) above. These early prototype samples got a lot of love on my Instagram.
2. THE CORNER GOES GENDER NEUTRAL
So the Selfridges ‘Agender’ effect is seeping through to other areas of retail already. Ecommerce site, The Corner has announced that from June it will incorporate a gender-neutral section on its site. Called “No Gender”, it will sell non-gender-specific pieces from brands including Rick Owens, Rad Hourani, Hood by Air and Ann Demeulemeester.
3. FAUSTINE STEINMETZ AND MARQUES’ALMEIDA IN LINE FOR LVMH FASHION PRIZE
Major news from the LVMH Young Fashion Designer Prize. London has scored very well with three out of eight candidates in the final lineup (why does this feel like Eurovision?!). Congrats to Faustine Steinmetz (above), Marques’Almeida and Craig Green, whose singular visions, creativity and business nous have done them proud in a hugely competitive market. Here’s my first piece on Faustine from 2013.
4. MARC BY MARC JACOBS IN JEOPARDY?
Rumours are swirling that Marc By Marc Jacobs is being killed off, or rather, folded into the main Marc Jacobs line. According to WWD’s Bridget Foley, it’s a cost cutting exercise in preparation for the impending IPO. But where will it leave Luella Bartley and Katie Hiller?
WORDS: Navaz Batliwalla/Disneyrollergirl
MARC BY MARC JACOBS IMAGE: DAZED by LEA COLOMBO
I’m not-very-secretly relieved to see the demise of the monopoly of the ‘plat-heel’ shoe. Those overstated stilettos with a stacked platform (also known as stripper heels) have just become ubiquitous on the high street to the point that it’s almost impossible to find high heels with normal soles. Well that’s slowly changing. Continue reading
“Louis Vuitton has become too common!” LVMH’s Bernard Arnault didn’t quite say last week. But the sentiment was there. Speaking at LVMH’s annual results presentation, he revealed that Louis Vuitton is scaling back on global expansion and focusing more on its high end products and superior customer service to avoid cheapening the brand.
This is a trend, not just at Louis Vuitton, but other luxury houses, who have stripped away the obvious logos and boosted product that shows off house ‘codes’. Dior recently reignited its ‘bar’ jacket and ‘comma’ heels, Gucci, the horsebit loafer (which is 60 years old this year), Chanel flagged up its pearls and Saint Laurent, its tie-neck blouses and iconic tuxedos. At Vuitton, the overexposed monogram has been sidelined for SS13 by the Damier check.
At Louis Vuitton’s pre-fall 13 preview on Thursday, my main highlight was the collection of Noe bags, a heritage Vuitton bag refreshed in new colours and sizes. Originally a carrying case for champagne bottles (what else?), the design celebrates its 80th anniversary this year.
My other highlight was the Icons collection, a capsule collection that updates pieces from the archive. I love this sheepskin balmacaan, a collarless coat that can be worn reversed with the leather on the outside. Delicious, no?
The Prada stacked ‘geta’ flatform is a work of art, that’s undisputed. A piece that you can actually wear? Not so much. Yes, you’ll see Anna Dello Russo, Fran Burns et al admirably trialling it come the February shows, but in the main those editors have drivers; mere mortals will face more of a challenge. Because as well as their height and bulk, these mega shoes weigh a bloody ton! Which is why Prada has also unveiled a far more wearable properly flat version, plus of course its fabulous metallic tabi sock which promises to be the real hit of the season. Continue reading
I knew I was going to like Charlotte Olympia’s SS13 collection when I got a glimpse of the chi-chi perfume bottle clutches a few weeks ago. But seeing the whole collection up close, I’m in love, lust, admiration and adulation. Where to start? Wicker wedges, satin espadrilles, cotton kitty pumps, poodle (poodle!) shoes, embroidered ‘newspaper’ clutches, genteel heels, “ooh la la” flats – there’s just so much to adore in this witty Paris-themed collection (which lands in February). Continue reading
Some goodies from the AIPR AW12 press day back in March. My favourite discovery? Louis W, a capsule collection for A.P.C by in-house designer Louis Wong, consisting of perfect renditions of the bomber and biker jacket (alas, they’re in men’s sizes – typical). Due in October… Continue reading
There has been quite the brouhaha over River Island showing a ‘blogger-inspired’ range to the press at its AW12 press day. Consisting of statement accessories and clothes (think texture clashing, fearless colourplay, bold prints, embellished everything) a few style bloggers have taken umbrage at being thought of as people who just throw on gaudy mis-matchy outfits to get attention from streetstyle photographers or other bloggers. To this I say, lighten up! Keep calm, keep your head down and carry on. River Island (and H&M with its forthcoming Anna Dello Russo collab) are just thinking commercially with this idea. Because to achieve this look (which I’d say is a particular experimental-eclectic blogger look than a general blogger look) you do need to buy things in multiples. So River Island, H&M et al will maximise on sales of say, a top, a bag and three necklaces, rather than just one piece. It’s smart business thinking innit!
Having missed the press day and the chance to appraise the AW12 collection myself, I asked River Island’s press office for their thoughts. Senior press officer Melissa Collins says, “the blogger story is representative of a look that’s interesting, exciting, not afraid to experiment, not afraid to try looks that break boundaries and to push limits and fashion forward. Bloggers are ambassadors of street style which has become such a key element of the fashion industry today. As a brand, we are defining what real people are wearing and we feel that bloggers are the voice of the real people.”
I think the debate is quite an interesting one as it does beg the question, where does style blogging go next? I’m sure this one will run and run and I wouldn’t be at all surprised to see the debate discussed further in Grazia next week…
Image: River Island Instagram
A lovely bonus of doing press days at Somerset House, I managed to get an eyeful of Fernando Casasempere’s breathtaking installation, Out Of Synch, just as the sky was clearing following a torrential downpour. An installation of 10,000 ceramic flowers, the display is in situ in the Edmond J. Safra Fountain Court until 27th April.
Sometimes, after endless appointments of full-on fashion-fashion, you need a palate-cleanser at the press days. Enter MIH‘s new Shepherd’s Bush HQ; all white walls, high ceilings, pristine denim and utility-luxe separates with a London-meets-Paris twist. I got a tour of the studio and a glimpse of the new mens Jean Machine line too… Continue reading
Liberty‘s press day is one of the highlights of the whole 2-month-long press day circuit. There’s always something new going on with the store (this year it’s the extension of the accessories hall into a space that will reach back to Kingly Street opening on May 1st) and the buyers are on hand to chat through their choices. Womenswear buyer Stephanie Jones, who I first met doing the Liberty Best Of British Open Call last year, gave me a wee tour… Continue reading