Fashion shows

London Fashion Week ss11 -Day 1 highlights

*Prophetik’s show which was all very olde worlde civil war era styling with chambray ballgowns, pintuck blouses and equestrian details – sadly no photos as I was too busy Twitpicing Jimmy Choo’s shoes in front of me (a square-toed slip-on, fyi). Oh and a wee hillybilly band danced a jig at the end. J’adore.


*A proper lunch! I recommend the mussels at Lowlander opposite the Vauxhall Fashion Scout venue.

*Chatting to (fashion styling legend) Judy Blame outside The Sustainability Show. Blame was a pioneer of the now-fashionable upcycling movement, having started his fashion career in the eighties making jewellery out of anything and everything old, weird and wonderful he could get his hands on. He was at the show to support BFF Noki. And he admired my Eley Kishimoto (courtesy of WAH!) nails. *Faints*
*Orla Kiely’s movie. There are fashion films and there are fashion films. The unsmiling woman moodily lit with weird angles and conceptual storyline? Not for me, but give me youthful whimsy, Lula-esque styling, cake and balloons and I’m all yours. Orla’s presentation had an 8-seater cinema planted in the middle of a room showing her Gia Coppola-directed film on a loop. “It was all very spontaneous and low budget and was shot in two days,” Orla told me over a cake-on-a-stick. “I was talking to Leith Clark (Lula editor-in-chief and Orla Kiely collaborator) about what we could do and we came up with the idea of the film about a month ago. She offered to speak to Gia and Gia said yes!”

Read more of my London Fashion Week musings on Stylecompare’s new Style Platform blog…

The future of fashion: inclusive or exclusive?

Just as we get nicely comfortable with the idea of fashion for all, the goal posts shift again. Fashion’s Night Out was a fabulously jolly affair with customers, celebs and designers all happily sharing the same breathing space. This round of fashion weeks will have more brands than ever live-streaming their shows, while a number of designers and CEOs also tweet from behind the scenes (hello @vbfashionweek, @MarcJacobsInt). Marc Jacobs’ tweeter, CEO Robert Duffy has also been giving away bags and surfboards (eh?) to lucky tweeters, creating quite the fashion frenzy. Very caring, very sharing.

But just when it was getting so cosy and democratic – BAM! – all change. Yes Burberry is live streaming its show online and broadcasting it on screens in-store but those in-store iPads aren’t just for any old civilian. No, the in-store treatment is for a select few privileged customers, so while they get to watch, shop and quaff champagne in the luxe surroundings of Burberry’s serene-but-sexy temples, the rest can press their noses against the window and like it will have to make do with their iPad at home on the DFS with a cup of PG Tips for company.

Tom Ford made his much anticipated and (not-very-well-kept) secret comeback yesterday during New York Fashion Week and what a to-do there was. No live-streaming for Ford. Instead there was a small salon-style show where only a handful of VIP press were present and they were strictly instructed that “all photographic and recording devices are prohibited. Thank you.”

Ford introduced each outfit modelled by an all-star cast including Beyonce, Lauren Hutton and Julianne Moore. How thrilling! And the outfits? Well we won’t be seeing those for quite some time, the official pictures were taken by Terry Richardson (allegedly for French Vogue) and are embargoed until next year. Blimey, New York Fashion Week has never been this exciting. Ford has clearly decided that all this ‘fashion for everyone’ guff has reached its tipping point and is leading the charge in the opposite direction. At his preposterously luxe end of the market, he’s making a case for super-exclusivity, the kind where customers are more than happy to pay for the privilege of wearing something that’s not been seen on every other Tom, Dick and Sharon.

Is Ford onto something here? It was noted recently that Chanel has scissored its sample sale guest list. The Chanel sample sale invitation is already one of the most coveted perks in the fashion and beauty business and invitations are like gold dust. The culling of the list sent out a firm message; for all that they may be embracing bloggers, setting up etail sites and interacting on Facebook, there’s no doubt that exclusivity still has meaning for luxury fashion brands. Just ask Tom.

London fashion Week aw10: Day 3

Favourite show so far? Margaret Howell ??? my kind of show: duffle coats/fairisle knits/rolled-up cords – boring-chic, none of this tricksy nonsense! >>>

>>>Alexa Chung at Margaret Howell channelling French schoolgirl: Peter Pan collar top, grey cardi, knee length skirt, navy tights >>> Faded patches on denim at Mulberry WTF? >>>

>>>The perfect 7/8th trouser at Mulberry >>> biccies pre-show and chocolate in the Mulberry goody bag >>>

>>> Marc Almond at Todd Lynn, (more excited to see him that Janet Jackson) >>> Almost got papped sitting behind Julia Restoin Roitfeld but narrowly avoided. Phew >>> More fun and revelations in Libertylondongirl’s Mercedes blogmobile >>> wisps of floral silk lingerie in the lingerie boudoir at LFW exhibition by the brilliantly named Beautiful Bottoms – two business graduates who are sold at Anthropologie and will be selling at ASOS from May >>> chit chat with Natalie Massanet >>> Boyfriend shoes and mirror-like pointy flats at Beatrix Ong >>>

>>>Meadham Kirchoff’s sequin spot knits >>> Clements Ribeiro’s slim coats with fur collars>>>

>>> Vivienne Westwood Red Label looked quite nice for a change >>>

[Margaret Howell and Vivienne Westwood pics from LFW website]

Quote of the day

‘We used to have all the celebrities and people there, and I think that at that moment in time that’s what people loved. It generated so much press and at a certain point it was like, did anybody actually watch the show? All I ever saw in the press was who was there. So we sort of stopped that and just got back to showing a fashion show, and if people want to come, great.’
Robert Duffy, President of Marc Jacobs on