This pile of fabric and rope has left me fit to be tied...
This pile of fabric and rope has left me fit to be tied...
Mirror Mirror on the wall
You may remember my sad tale last weekend of poor little gold sequins who were hi-jacked to create the harem pants from hell.
Let me start by saying that I realise that many of you will be fans of Ms Chung, if so look away now! Prince B most certainly isn't. Infact, he really can't stand the woman. It seems that whatever fashion show we are at, we are always sitting across from her which annoys him no end.
At Emilio de la Morena she was keeping herself to herself, which was strange in itself since she seems to love being in front of a camera...any camera. It then dawned on Prince B why that was - she had a huge cold sore.
He loudly exclaimed "Look! That cold sore has an Alexa Chung on it's face!!!" which was promptly following by much laughter at his own joke. Got to love the ManBitch!
On reflection, what I realise about my trip to London is that I just needed more time. If I'd had another day there I could have fit in all the things I wanted to do. I love the city very much indeed and being back in Glasgow has made me realise it even more.
Thinking about my time there, the highs and the lows, I have concluded that even though I only saw two shows, well three if you include Krystof Strozyna, I witnessed the rapid ascent of an already rising star. Emilio de la Morena.
Initially I thought I was going to miss the show as we were on a bus stuck in traffic and the clock was tick, tick, ticking. Even though we had seats I knew that if we were late someobody else's bum would have been parked in them thus leaving us standing once more. When it became clear that the bus wasn't getting us to the venue on time, we jumped in a cab instead and told the driver to put foot his foot down. Get the Queen to the ball on time my man! And he did. I love London cab drivers!
Turned out we arrived in good time as there was actually a drinks reception thing first which gave us time to cool down and for my heart to stop racing.
Once we were ushered inside and taken to our seats we heard a Spanish voices all around us - Emilio had brought a posse! The presence of Tennessee from The Like (looking decidely bored it must be said) and her BFF Alexa Chung, who pretended to write in her note book probably so that she wasn't bothered by the press who might have noticed the massive cold sore on her face, it was clear that Emilio has 'arrived'.
When his show started we were treated to a triumphant return to Emilio at his sculptural best. Edible, juicy, fruity colours like cherry, rasperry, plum and banana yellow on buttock skimming, tight dresses. Pleated and folded panels of silk added a very hard edge to the youthful collection, and the architectural influences which Emilio loves very much were present in abundance.
There were large beaded details on the backs of dresses which lent the whole collection a very futuristic appeal. If Logan's Run was made now and featured only women then they might wear Emilio's designs.
Once we had been treated to a parade of dresses he unexpectedly delighted the audience with a pair of playful yellow knee high shorts in yellow check, teamed with a striped yellow top and a cropped yellow jacket with an oversized, pixelated houndstooth check. It was a splash of fun which went down really well with those in attendance.
The shoes, massive red suede wedges, went surpisingly well with each look.
To my eyes, it looked like Emilio has decided to make a collection entirely based on what he loves. Unfiltered, undiluted and pure with an almost complete disregard for commerciality (is that a word?), in so much as the type of person who can afford to wear his pieces might not actually be able to carry off the large architectural collars, for example. In short, it was a rebellious collection.
When I first noticed him, way back for his first collection, it was his use of colour which made me sit up and take notice, and this collection was a definite return to those initial sensibilities.
This show made my trip worth while, because I am sure I have witnessed the moment his career really took off and I am pleased I came along for the ride.
I am waiting on Emilio HQ sending me some lovely shiots but in the meantime here is the video. Enjoy.
I do like a nosey around online vintage shops. One I have been keeping my peepers on is Vagabond NYC.
Run my Andrea Perini and Naveed Hussain, it's pretty reasonably priced on most items and gets in some really good labels such as Helmut Lang and Body Map. Each piece seems to be carefully selected for it's presence within todays trends and looks as opposed to simply recreating the look of bygone era's.
I like that they create monthly editorials which lends the whole thing a more serious tone, which reflects the carefully edited content of the actual shop.
I have yet to take the plunge and order from them yet as I don't know iof they actually ship internationally, but for US dwellers this is a site you should visit regularly.
As I mentioned before, the waiting and waiting to get into the show had taken some of the excited sheen off for me as I held my UFO adorned invite in my paws. And I certainly wasn't expecting to see the vast hordes of people inside that there was. Clearly an indicator that Unique has well and truly arrived. That, and the fact Daisy Lowe made an appearance in what looked like a bad 70's maxi-kaftan.
The disorganised chaos aside, the Topshop show really was utterly fantastic in my opinion. The invite told us it was a 'space' theme. So whilst I expected galaxy prints and futuristic metallics, I didn't expect the eco-warrior, nomadic tribe slant they added too.
When I saw the models' braided, dreadlock-like hair I initially thought "uh oh". But I must admit that they took it in a direction that stopped the whole thing looking too 'attendees at a sci-fi conference'.
It really couldn't have been farther from the easy commercial and decidely more palatable SS09 collection. This one will illicit marmite-like responses - you'll either love it or hate it. I personally thought it quite a bold move on the part of Topshop since it was quite a risky collection in so much as it's very directional, but taking each individual piece and you do actually have items which have commercial success written all over them. It did slightly lack the finesse of the A/W08 collection admittedly, but I think Topshop were keen to keep the fun element and they succeeded in that respect.
My only complaint was that some of the styling was a bit 80's which for me is getting slightly boring, but it certainly wasn't enough to detract from the excellent mix they presented.
Leather is still very much present, both in black but also in dull metallics and I totally coveted the thigh high boots/spats which were shown with some of the looks. There were sequins in plentiful supply, like the stars in the sky. They adorned loose fitting tops and harem trousers. There were wee smidgens of neon in there too which will inevitably illicit 'cyberpunk' comparisons, which isn't actually all that far off the mark. Think Glastonbury or Tribal Gathering 1992 and you are some of the way there to experiencing the collection, although they thankfully didn't take the look too literally.
I also appreciated their incorporation of lots of delicious texture, which they have taken to whole new levels mixing fringed wool with mega fluffy sweaters, sheeny leather, perspex, sequins and lattice cutouts.
For me, Topshop Unique is going from strength to strength and I think that whilst their demographic for their normal Topshop fare is teenagers and early to mid 20-somethings, their Unique collection also appeals to the slightly more fashion savvy older people too, who can take elements and mix them into their slightly more mature wardrobe and make the pieces work in an altogether different way. Bravo!
In terms of shopping I didn't get much done at all really.
For ages I've been carrying around a Shinzi Katoh tote but took my Miu Miu with me to London since the tote is completely filthy. I'd honestly forgotten just how damn heavy it was so the thought of lugging it around the whole entire time pretty much filled me with dread.
When we finally arrived in London we managed to fit in Harvey Nichols since we were staying in Kensington. I saw this fabulous Diesel Black Gold bag which had my name written all over it. Squishy soft leather, padded carry handles, a chain shoulder strap and chrome bits. Hell yeah!
It's also light as a feather and big enough to carry spare shoes, which, as it turned out, was a necessity with my knee injury.
The flat 'sensible' shoes which I took to London, which were meant to be my walking around shoes, were an old pair of white winkle pickers. Oh how deluded I was! Within a day of wearing them they had torn my feet to shreds. I was very close to tears after walking back from Harvey Nics to the hotel. Needless to say by Saturday morning I was freaking out as my plan was to wear my heels then change into my flat shoes for general traipsing around.
Luckily my gallant Prince came to the rescue and rushed out on Saturday morning and bought me a pair of Converse. Not just any old Converse - patent white ones!
After my knee injury on Saturday night I ended up constanstly flitting between heels and these, since the flat shoes would put strain on my knee whereas the heels meant all my weight was on my thighs, but the heels meant I couldn't walk anywhere very fast! It was like Changing Rooms but with shoes!
I'd been eyeing these up for a while since my other white Converse have definitely had their day!
As I mentioned - I will post photos of the clothes I bought at the weekend, which were actually very few to tell the truth. But some gems did come my way...some very special gems indeed.
Hello all! Well my trip to London is well and truly and over and I can honestly say I have mixed feelings about it. Bear with me while I moan and ramble since I am exhausted from traveling to and from London then another 400 mile round trip to and from Aberdeen, so my brain is well and truly mush. I retain the right to retract anything I may say at a later date when the fuzz has cleared!
Overall, even though I was only attending 2 shows, I felt I did a whole lot of rushing around for a whole lot of nothing.
Friday when I arrived was pretty much a wash-out since the train arrived too late for us to really do anything in terms of shopping, and Saturday was sort of a big pain in the ass.
The Topshop show was a tad shambolic and seemed to end up a random free for all. After hovering around a good 40 minutes to even get into the venue, when we did finally get in it was beyond too hot. I had pretty much lost the will to live well before then, so when I had to vie for viewing space with a man with a kid on his shoulders I almost did an about turn and walked out. Which was real shame because I actually thought the show was fantastic, but I'll do a proper review later. The day was only saved by a quick drink and natter down the pub afterwards with the lovely H from Topshop, Disney Rollergirl and Stevie from Discotheque Confusion.
Matters weren't helped with the Circle line, and I think Disctrict line, being out of service - basically the two we needed the most, thus meaning lots of taxis and lots of walking and in the end lots of buses.
By Saturday night though I was really questioning why the hell I was even there. I had sort of come to the conclusion that when you have such a limited time in somewhere like London you really have to prioritise. Its either all fashion or all shopping/touristy stuff, it's nearly impossible to do both.
H from Topshop had put us on the guest list for Fabric and whilst I was tired and a bit down by night time, we went out for a walk to decide if we would go or not. On the way back to the hotel a knee injury sustained a long time ago came back to haunt me. It literally, without warning, gave way from underneath me rendering me completely immobile. Prince B had to more or less carry me back to the hotel in lots of searing pain. Oh joy!
Once I had bound my knee together to allow me to hobble around better, Sunday proved more of a success and my faith was restored a little. The Emilio de la Morena show was a definite highlight of the whole weeekend. A much more organised affair it more than made up for the shambles that was Saturday. Again, I shall post details on that later.
I didn't take any photos of anything really but I will take some shots at the weekend of what I wore, if anyone's interested.
Monday was the only day where I got any shopping done at all. Made our way out to Whitechapel to the incredible End End Thrift Store. This is a positive emporium of treasures! I could have happily remained there all day long. I bought only a couple of things because I was aware that anything I bought was all going to have to be lugged onto the train, so I had to be sensible and not buy tons, but I could have easily! Again, I'll take pics at the weekend.
I then went onto have lunch with very lovely, and very beautiful, Lady J from camp Braganza, and then into town to the awesome Bang Bang. What a shop! Definitely one which would need to be visited regularly because I bet it gets some amazing pieces in. And that was pretty much that.
So I do have mixed feelings about the whole trip. I think perhaps the compromise is to do fashion stuff for the A/W season, which I personally think is the best season, and just go shopping and sack off the S/S season.
Of course it does throw up the issue of how does a mere blogger get to do nothing but fashion shows? The obvious answer is to ask/beg for invites, but when I am coming so far it's a bit of a gamble to arrive at the hotel and either find lots or none at all. PR companies are great at contacting you when they want you to post about their designers but I suspect when the time comes to cough up a ticket they will remain suspiciously quiet.
I have a lot of reflection to do for sure, but one thing is certain, thank heavens for the grace of Jean Pierre Braganza, Emilio de la Morena and the lovely H from Topshop.
I received an email from Tara who makes lovely things and sells them at her shop - Leviticus Jewelry