Friday, 29 April 2011

Jumping on the Royal Wedding Bandwagon

Wasn't it a beautiful wedding? Kate Middleton looked amazing in a Sarah Burton for Alexander McQueen dress.

However I was given the opportunity by Bristol and Bath Venue Magazine to design a dress for Kate Middleton for the big day and I thought I would share it with you (We were encouraged to be less traditional!). If you haven't managed to see a copy of Venue check out the article here.Now I will leave you with Newly Weds kiss on the Balcony... Enjoy! Fashion Fantasist xx

Saturday, 23 April 2011

Yours Truly, x

Hello lovelies,

I would like to introduce you to Kerry Lockwood the blogger behind Yours Truly,x. I have been following Kerry's blogs for awhile and actually studied with her a few years ago, but her personal style has really captured my imagination. A fearless combination of vintage, high street, dyed red hair and a beautiful smile Miss Lockwood really knows how to have fun with fashion. So I thought I would dedicate a blog post to her and share with you her wonderful personal style.So Kerry, can you tell me a little about your personal style?
I suppose the easiest way to describe my style currently, would be a culmination of the 1940's - 60's infused with modern accents, and personal heirloom relics.My style is evolving and developing, and yet I think the basis has always pretty much been the same, even from my teen years. I love yesteryear, and will buy vintage garments for a great pattern, fantastic cut or if they evoke a personal memory. I then mix those pieces up with high street or charity shop finds, and jewellery that has sentimental value. I think this creates a very modern approach to style, as well as a much more individualistic wardrobe!Where do you find inspirations for your outfits?
It's such a cliche but inspiration can literally be found anywhere! One of my favourite handbags is a little wicker picnic basket that once held a children's tea set, I loved it so it became part of my wardrobe! I love mixing childhood relics into my outfits.I tend to use films as a great source of inspiration, whether old or modern they can have such a plethora of ideas within them!For example, I have some brogues that I hunted down after seeing a pair Naomi Watts wore in 'The Painted Veil', I have a Maria Von Trapp style dress from 'The Sound of Music' and a faux fur coat that could have been Margot's from 'The Royal Tenenbaums'I think it's really important to be open to inspiration from all directions, and with the Internet, it's literally easier than ever to be well informed!

Who are your style icons?
So many! Frida Kahlo, Iris Apfel, Catherine Baba, Audrey Hepburn, Little Edie Beale, Dita Von Teese (her street style!) Bette Davis, Jessica De Lotz, Lucille Ball, Rita Hayworth, Anna Karina, Grace Kelly, Ava Gardner (my Grandfather danced with her once!). I also quite like some modern icons like Kirsten Dunst, Alexa Chung, Leith Clark, Tennesse Thomas, Drew Barrymore, Iekeliene Stange, Helena Bonham Carter. I also find innumerable bloggers very inspiring, as their style is untouched by wealthy companies peddling their designs!What does 'style' mean to you and what is important about fashion?
Style is something very organic and individual to you. It isn't contrived or orchestrated, though it does take some effort! It is you at your most creative, and coincidentally your most comfortable. It's about evolving, being honest and experimental (sometimes getting it wrong!) but most of all about having fun.

A lot of people comment about how much I smile on my blog, but the truth is, when a lot of those photos are being taken, I'm having a really wonderful time! Clothes should be intrinsic in that.

It bothers me when people say 'Oh I could never dress like you, I couldn't pull it off' because I dress in a way that I think is an extension of my personality and in a way, it defines me. Therefore, flattered as I am, I openly encourage people to develop their own style that is unique to them, and compatible to their own personalities.What is your favourite piece of clothing (at the moment? Mine changes every time I find another hidden treasure...)
Oh I know what you mean! But then I suppose each new garment is the latest part of your style evolution? I am currently obsessing over a black scallop 1950's dress (recently featured on my blog) that I simply adore. I'm also going a bit crazy for my sundresses right now. It's nice to wear vibrant colours after such a long Winter!Where do you like to shop?
I shop a lot on eBay, as it's so convenient. I have a saved searches list as long as my arm! I also pick up a lot of things in Brighton & London as I visit both quite regularly. In London I love Brick Lane, Portobello, Angel Islington, Soho and Covent Garden. I could quite easily blow a whole months wage on a day out in London! Brighton, where my boyfriend lives is also great. Relatively recently they gained a large Beyond Retro store (where my black scallop dress was found!) and there are also tons of boutiques, stalls and markets to explore.

I also wish I could shop abroad more! I'd love to explore Stockholm, and the style haunts I found in Paris and Berlin are the stuff dreams are made of!I also love your tumblr - wonderful interior snap shots and general lifestyle - where do you like to find these images and do you have any favourite interiors? (Places/homes of someone/or designers?)
I love interior design, it's another element of style which is so personable. It's funny you should mention a favourite interior, as I'm quite obsessed with an artist couple, Annie Morris & Idris Khan. Their home is simply phenomenally designer, with breath-taking attention to detail and enviable vintage finds!

My tumblr is kind of like a creative diary for me, it references when I developed interest in new ideas and shows my creative train of thought I suppose!Aside from fashion what else interests you?
Well, films as I mentioned are a great passion of mine, as are books. I always try to find time to read, and make sure it's something worth reading! I'm currently ploughing my way through Nobakov's 'Lolita'. It's disturbing and brilliant in equal measure. Maya Angelou is one of my favourite authors.

I like nature and being outside, blues, jazz and easy listening music, collecting things, talking to people and learning something new, travel, illustration, art, designing…

I also really love history, particularly British history. Certain periods of time just fascinate me, which is a bit of a guilty confession truth be told! The Antiques Roadshow is one of my favourite programs!I know you did a fashion textiles degree and I am curious if you are doing any projects at the moment?
I'm currently trying to set up my own business. It's currently a battle of time and finances, but I have heaps of ideas I'm eager to make into a reality. The business will be based around home textiles, gifts, paper accessories and baby accessories. Through the design process, it has become obvious that my company will be one that is very quintessentially British, print-orientated, and a little bit whimsical and romantic I suppose! But would you really expect anything else…!I hope you have enjoyed meeting Kerry please stop by her blogs they really are lovely I find heaps of inspiration just tucked away. I adore British-ness and I think Kerry has hit the nail on the head and I look forward to whatever she does next! Find her blogs here and here. She also has a Lookbook account which you can browse.

Best wishes,
Fashion Fantasist xx

Tuesday, 19 April 2011

Fashion Weekender

Hello All!

Just a few trend images from the Cabot Circus Fashion Weekender (2nd - 3rd April) in case you missed the event!Denim Dury by WarehouseSpring Forward by Dorothy PerkinsFeeling Good by Ted BakerNeon Rainbow by ZaraThe Cash by Harvey NicholsMr Sandman by House of Fraser - I love the outfit with the shorts!!Nude Study by Harvey NicholsCannes-Tastic by House of FraserFrocks and Frolics by French ConnectionLadies Who Lunch by Hobbs
On the Saturday alone the Fashion Weekender attracted over 100,00 visitors!

Fashion Fantasist xx

Thursday, 14 April 2011

'Tweet Tweet Tweet'

Once again David Longshaw has captured my imagination with his descriptive stories and beautiful prints. This collection for Autumn Winter 11/12 is an exciting mix of narrative, photographic and illustrative prints, and collaboration. So obviously I needed to find out more about it and contacted David to explain the inspiration behind the collection and the collaborations involved.What is the inspiration behind your collection?
Here's the story-A/W 2011/12 Inspiration.

Seriously Rose, I can’t bloody believe it here, they’ve stuck me in the middle of sodding nowhere with these religious nuts who expect me to go to church with them and sit shitting cross stitching by the fire ‘of an eve.’ What do they think it is, the bloody 15thCentury?’ They don’t drink and they don’t f****ing swear. There’s no one my age I’ve met other than one or two who are destined to die virgins unless one of them changes sex and their parents force them in to an arranged marriage to procreate more dull, weird looking bastards! ‘Don’t even get me started on the sodding birds! It’s supposed to be quiet in the countryside, but every morning at 5am all I get is bloody tweet, tweet, tweet; they even tap on the window- I thought it was someone at the front door at first. It’s a nightmare when you’ve got a hangover. I managed to smuggle in some booze but I’m running low.'

Tora, a wayward girl, gets sent to live with her tea-total, religious, cross stitching, aunt and uncle in the middle of nowhere, to try get her on the straight and narrow. She takes a soft toy named Frank with her, which has a pet shoe and a love of whisky.

Who have you collaborated with and how was it that you came to work with them?
This season for the first time I've teamed up with footwear designer Heather Blake. And for the 3rd season with Kirsty Ward on jewellery and the milliner Katherine Lee on a special show piece.

Heather was in the year above me at the RCA (She won the accessories prize at ITS#5), she exhibited at Somerset House during LFW, in my first season there and the LFW newspaper borrowed Heathers shoes to shoot with my garments on the blogger Katie of 'what Katie wore next'- They looked great together- so Heather suggested a collaboration.

With Katherine Lee we've worked together since my MA, were friends from home. She's a milliner now but when she first started collaborating with me she had been designing fabrics in Italy for the big fashion houses.

With Kirsty we first met at Alberta Ferretti, in Italy where we were designing. We've worked together since I started my own label.
Have any of your characters helped you with this collection?
The new characters from my A/W story have obviously helped, but also Selnec &Harriet, her rabbit (who I write with for Fashion156) are both decorating the scarf collaboration with Dominique Mosley (The S/S ones have already sold out in Rome and Hong Kong).

I hope you enjoy this collection as much as I do!! I am already saving my pennies for that beautiful shirt! As always I eagerly await the next season and hopefully another wonderful story accompanied by truly beautiful and creative clothes.Look out for articles by David and his friends on Fashion156 and his website.

Speak soon! Have a lovely style post coming up and some seasonal trends from Cabot Circus.
Fashion Fantasist xx

Sunday, 10 April 2011

Pull Yourself Together

This is something I plan to do in regards to this blog because I have been negligent and I am sorry!!!

But on a brighter note I would like to talk more about Pippa Stewart who's collections were featured in the Fairwear Fashion Show in March. I was able to catch up with Pippa and find out about the inspirations behind her collection 'Pull Yourself Together' and 'Operculum' created with Ashleigh McPherson and her views on fairtrade. 'My inspiration for 'Pull Yourself Together' was a number of things, first of all, over the summer of 2010 I was obsessed with the film 'An Education' by Lone Schervig. I particularly loved a scene in which the main character took a trip to Paris, the dress she was wearing was so sophisticated and feminine. I also have a passion for Vintage clothing and fabric, which i tend to collect from local charity shops whenever I have time to spare. So when i came across the floral fabric (featured within the collection), that teamed with a visit to David Austen Roses LTD in Brighton-inspired a 1950'sesque look for the 'Pull Yourself Together' collection. The collection I did with Ashleigh was the 'Operculum Collection' in which a group of six designers teamed together and focused on various areas of the collection. Operculum was inspired by garments from the era of World War 1 and the Women's Land Army, then mixed with a contemporary feel. The idea of the collection was to be based on classic designs, sustainable and interchangeable, with detachable collars and buttons. Each garment was to be treasured by its wearer in the way garments would have been in World War 1. As a group we disagreed with the issues of commercial highstreet shops generating 'disposable' clothing that is worn a few times and then thrown away.For Operculum we used 100% cottons and silk habotai all Fairtrade and we aimed to use wools found from local Alpaca farms in the West Country. The actual patterns for the garments hardly created any wastage and if there was any to spare after, the off-cuts were turned into gaiters and collars. All the embroidery throughout the collection is 100% sustainable by Gunold, who use renewable resources to create their range of embroidery threads.

I feel Fairtrade is very important because it generates better working conditions and fair terms for local farmers who produce cotton and other materials for the Fashion Industry. It also creates sustainability within local communities and that's why its important to be sustainable within fashion. With all the fabrics, patterns, trims and clothes found sat and unused in charity shops, why should we use even more energy and resources creating something new when we haven't even utilized the mass of resources we already have.'

I think these collections are both lovely and I really admire Pippa's thoughts on Fairtrade. I will definitely be keeping an eye open for what Pippa and Ashleigh do next!

Pippa has two blogs one for Pull Yourself Together and the other for Operculum.

I promise to have more frequent posts and I have a couple lined up soon!!

Best wishes,
Fashion Fantasist xx