Wednesday, 30 November 2011

British Fashion Awards 2011

This week’s British Fashion Awards celebrated women as the forefront of British design with Sarah Burton, Victoria Beckham and Stella McCartney winning the most sought-after awards.

(Sarah Burton with Designer of the Year award)

I was so pleased to see a well-deserved Sarah Burton, creative director at Alexander McQueen, named designer of the year. This award tops a fantastically successful year for Burton, who designed the most memorable dress of the decade, Kate Middleton’s wedding dress, and broke record visitor numbers for the Alexander McQueen: Savage Beauty exhibition in New York.

(Victoria Beckham with Designer Brand award)

Sarah Burton has shown that Britain is again leading the design field with such exciting names as Stella McCartney, Burberry, Erdem, Christopher Kane, Paul Smith, Mary Katrantzou, Victoria Beckham, Charlotte Olympia and many more. Do you need any more reasons to buy British?

(Christopher Kane and Alexa Chung with New Establishment award)

For those of you who missed the winners list, here it is:

Emerging talent award – ready to wear: Mary Katrantzou

Emerging talent award – accessories: Tabitha Simmons

Emerging talent award – menswear: Christopher Raeburn

Accessory designer: Charlotte Olympia

Menswear designer: Kim Jones

Designer brand: Victoria Beckham

Model: Stella Tennant

BFC outstanding achievement in fashion: Paul Smith

Isabella Blow award for fashion creator: Sam Gainsbury

Red carpet award: Stella McCartney

Designer of the year: Sarah Burton for Alexander McQueen

New establishment award: Christopher Kane

British style award brought to you by Vodafone: Alexa Chung

Monday, 28 November 2011

Greenwich Letterhead Pencils

I just LOVE these Greenwich Letterhead pencils! Their fun and catchy slogans are bound to give them cult status. You can choose between such classics as 'Why I follow Kanye on Twitter' (above), or even your favourite teenage power couples. Will you pick Dawson and Joey, or will it be Brenda and Dylan?

Saturday, 26 November 2011

Snakes in Dalston

Beware, dangerous snakes spotted in Dalston! It hasn't yet been disclosed whether it's the reptile or hipster variety...

Sunday, 20 November 2011

V&A - The Power of Making

Pencils with alphabet sculpted into nibs.
On Friday, I visited 'The Power of Making' at the V&A, which is an exhibition of 100 contemporary craft objects selected by the V&A and the Craft Council. The exhibition had such varied objects as the vertiginous Alexander McQueen armadillo shoes to an 8ft gorilla made entirely from coat hangers.
Gorilla made from coat hangers.
The exhibition has had criticism that the objects selected are simply too random, however in my opinion, this is the beauty of 'The Power of Making'. The objects all have the 'Wow Factor' and are each discussion points in their own right, from the giant blanket, knitted from the wool of 18 sheep, to a lace thong that was handmade from the Polish lace-makers who served Pope John Paul II.
Pearly Queen Blazer, using buttons.
I would highly recommend visiting this exhibition (which is free!); it is effectively a cabinet of curiosities which can keep you amazed, entertained and enthralled for an afternoon.
Alexander McQueen armadillo shoes.

Saturday, 19 November 2011

Cos Colour Block Clutch

I've spent many a shopping trip eyeing up these colour block clutches from Cos. To all my friends and family, you can take that as a big hint! It works perfectly as an oversized purse or, as I would prefer to use it, a small clutch. In true Cos style, it is minimal and modern in design and fills a Céline-shaped gap perfectly.
I seem to spend an ashamedly large portion of my free time in Cos at the moment. It helps that I work opposite a large branch, although my bank balance doesn't thank me in quite the same way. The A/W collection is truly the best I've seen at the store in years, which is particularly pleasing after a disappointing S/S 11 season. I could quite literally buy the vast majority of the store!

Tuesday, 15 November 2011

Danish Knitwear

KAFFESLABBERAS // MADS AND ERNA (SUBTITLED) from Kaffeslabberas on Vimeo.

Danish knitwear is big news at the moment, from the Faroese jumper made famous from 'The Killing' to Malene Birger's minimalist designs. However, the knitwear making the biggest waves in the world of fashion at the moment comes from a local Kaffeslabberas (the equivalent of a knitting group) made up by ten elderly women.

These women are creating some of the most popular items in Copenhagen, for a wide range of designers, after their talents were spotted at a local Christmas fayre by a designer working for Vibskov. They now produce items for several Danish designers, including Vibskov. This is such a fantastic way of making good use of key craftsmanship and expertise within fashion, and to support local talent.

The latest Kaffeslabberas project is a book, featured in the video above, of knitwear patterns commissioned by Danish designers. The video is very endearing and well worth a view!

Wednesday, 9 November 2011

Versace for H&M

Last night Versace held a catwalk show for the launch of its collection at H&M.
As you can see from the photos, Donatella Versace has designed a collection that is quintessential of the Versace brand. From silk miniskirts to garish florals in flamboyant colours.
Perhaps I will be hung by my Wolford tights when I say that I really expected more from the collection. H&M guest collections are always held in high esteem (bar Madonna's travesty), and I don't think that this has lived up to expectation.
In my opinion the collection is far too cheap looking, especially the fringe dresses and sequin pieces. It provides the kind of clothes that just simply don't translate to the high street. I think that Donatella has fundamentally forgotten that designing for a high-end catwalk show and the high street are two very different concepts.

Monday, 7 November 2011

Grayson Perry Exhibition

On Sunday, I visited Grayson Perry's, 'The Tomb of the Unknown Craftsmen' installation at the British Museum. The former winner of the Turner prize, curated an installation highlighting beautiful artefacts from the British Museum, made by unknown craftsmen and women over time, from across the globe.

Perry explores a number of themes from pilgrimages to shamanism, motorbikes to holy relics, and intersperses them with his own creations included his infamous ceramics covered in popular culture slogans.

As you reach the top of the stairs of the British Museum, you are greeted with a flamboyant motorbike, covered in hearts, frills and flowers in pastel shades. This is the eccentrically designed bike that Grayson Perry drove to Chelmsford's twinned town of Backnang, Germany. Needless to say, it must have caused quite a stir en route.

However, the highlight of the show was Alan Measles, who played a starring role. Alan Measles is Grayson Perry's teddy bear who features heavily in his work, and was named after his childhood best friend, at a time when he was suffering from measles. In this exhibition, we see Alan Measles depicted as a God, aside a motorbike (above), and you can even find him on Twitter.

It was a fantastically varied and interesting exhibition, and one which I would highly recommend.

Saturday, 5 November 2011

Dazed & Confused, Björk Cover

To celebrate Dazed & Confused's 20th anniversary, I have dedicated today's post to my favourite Dazed cover from the past 20 years.

The cover in question features Björk stood in the palm of a man's hand, looking like an inhabitant from Nineveh. True to form
Björk looks incredible in a myriad of colour, textures and proportions. In my opinion, she is the perfect advocate for the magazine, completely original, a creative trend-setter, and constantly evolving. Here's the another 20 years!

Wednesday, 2 November 2011

Monsoon Dress

This Jenny Spot Dress from Monsoon caught my eye in The Guardian a couple of days ago. It would be perfect for a spring/summer wedding, of which I have several next year; and if I buy it now hopefully there won't be a 'she's wearing my dress' moment. A red dress with polka dots shouldn't necessarily work but it does perfectly. I think this is helped by the beautiful pussy bow detail, demure calf-length and chiffon material.



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