15 September 2016

New York Fashion Week 2016 (Part 2!)

Just a quick post this evening,

After an eventful week, Marc Jacobs drew yet another opulent and luxurious NYFW to a dramatic close. With some stunning shots leaking onto Vogue Runway and our social media feeds, the show concept loosely incorporated a 'rasta-hippie' vibe into the usual jaw-dropping Jacobs action. With a clique of million-pound faces to walk the beautifully strung up runway at Hammerstein ballroom. Supermodels Karlie Kloss, Kendall Jenner and the Hadid sisters were amongst the cool-squad chosen to represent the closing brand at Fashion Week, dressed up in faux, rainbow dreadlocks and platforms worthy of an 80's strip show. 

A menagerie of colour, texture and layering, the design team behind Marc Jacobs SS17 collection used vast amounts of sequins and embellishment on the garments to create the elaborate, retro vibe the star-studded audience seated at the ballroom were expecting. With the best looks already displayed on Harpers Bazaar and Vogue.com, the fast-fashion element within the more couture end of the industry is absolutely playing a key role across 2016 fashion weeks. With inspirations such as the 1980's club kids, Burning Man Festival and Rasafarianism, it is no wonder the collection is the source of some controversy. The question is being raised as to why there was not more of a cultural diversity present within the modelling cohort walking the show, or even members of the true rastafarian community to lend cultural appropriation. 

However, with a tongue-in-cheek, kooky approach to the styling, it can be said that the incorporation of dreadlocks on white models is simply a reflection of current trend and should be applauded as a bold move forward in Marc Jacobs design. 

all images above property of Harpers Bazaar (c)

9 September 2016

New York Fashion Week 2016 (Part 1)

Hi again!

Apologies for the break in posting. I took some time to shut off my blogging account and did some travelling through the west coast of America. It was out there that I collaborated my thoughts properly and began chanelling my full efforts into my future career in fashion writing. I am so pleased to say I have a place studying for an MA in Fashion Journalism at the renowned London College of Fashion, beginning rather shortly! I will keep this blog updated with my work and my journey, I can't wait to begin!

So it's upon us again, the cycle that never breaks. New York Fashion Week, the Fashion Week to end all Fashion Weeks. Dripping with exclusivity and 'cool' factor, New York is the hipster's response to luxury. From fledgling indie labels flocked with lego-haired bloggers, to the flourishing grandeur of Yeezy, attended only by the A*-listers and above, New York '16 has already cemented it's original take on the AW16 season. 

Although taking a hard slating from the critics for his latest collection, Kanye West's designs for Yeezy struck a surprisingly ethical note at his creative display yesterday on Roosevelt Island. With a well-chosen selection of models ranging in size and ethnicity, Kanye says his Yeezy muses are chosen for their edgy flavour. We saw 'nude' bodysuits and skin-matching garmets in a slightly more military style than his first installation. However, aside from the commendations on politial correctness, the show was verging on a shambles as models passed out from heat-exhaustion or fell over in their absurd footwear. The Kardashians were of course present and documenting the whole affair on their vast social media empire, therefore generating more online interest and exposure for Kanye's show than potentially the whole rest of New York Fashion Week. Congraulations to Kanye on the marketing strategy. 

(c) Telegraph

(c) Vogue.com

(c) Yahoo.com
Aside from the dramatics at Yeezy, fashion week is running smoothly across the pond. Bloggers so far have picked out contrasting highlights including Tom Ford's glamourous, star-studded opening show against the 'elevated grunge' vibe and nu-fast-fashion of returning whizz-kid Thakoon Panichgul. 

Tom Ford (c) Harpers Bazaar

Tom Ford (c) Harpers Bazaar
 Ford's traditionally glamourous approach to the AW16 season left the concept of originality as a side thought as guests were overwhelmed by the frank simplicity of the concept. In true 'fashion-cliche' style, Ford's models swept down the runway in animal print and black luxe, fronting a movement of re-engagement with the classic fashion icon during NYFW so far.

Thakoon Panichgul (c) Harpers Bazaar

Thakoon Panichgul (c) Harpers Bazaar
Clean lines and layered textures were key to re-arising star Thakoon Panichgul's stunning show, set against the skyline of the Brooklyn Bridge. An ode to grunge, Panichgul's classic shapes, draped over one another set a mood of elegance and heritage within a young and dynamic outline. As one of the most talked about 'fast fashion' designers of NYFW 2016, Panichgul's collection lead the debate on trend and colour for the AW16 season with layered nudes/beiges trumping as a leader in this field. 

Finally, my favourite collection so far goes to a young designer who's collection was briefly aired over the NYFW live stream. Rene Mejia, representing the Art Institute of Fort Lauderdale has shown his debut collection at New York. Drawing inspiration from Degas 'Ballet Rehearsal' Mejia's collection uses light colours in pairing with soft metallics, elegant silhouettes, classic shapes and tulle embellishment to bring out a softer side of the AW16 season.
Rene Mejia (c) Zimibio

Rene Mejia (c) Zimibio
Rene Mejia (c) Zimibio

8 May 2016

Bath In Fashion Part Two! Designer Catwalk Show

Hi lovelies!

I'm so sorry this post is so late, I had some real problems with my camera corrupting the images I took on the night... but it's here now with accompanying images! (hooray) Thank you to Bath In Fashion for stepping up and letting me have useage of the images they took that night, all copyright and ownership to #BIF.

My previous post on Bath In Fashion was an inside look into the VIP bloggers day I attended, you can still catch the full gossip if you scroll down... It was a fabulous day! I want to extend my full thanks and congratulations to the wonderful organisers of the whole fashion week, everything was so exciting and I already can't wait for next year!

To set the scene; I arrived on the evening of the show with my partner-in-crime, sister and photographer Amy. We had donned our sharpest heels and brandishing cameras and smartphones managed to work our way to some fabulous seats. Sponsored by fine jewellery designer and Bath native Nicholas Wylde in collaboration with the amazing Dame Zandra Rhodes, the dim mood lighting and extravagent chandelier cast a spell over the beautiful Bath assembly rooms in the famous fashion museum. The perfect place for an evening of glitz and glamour!

After a quick reception of champagne and giggles infront of the most amazing couture gown designed by Nicholas Oakwell we were swept into our seats and on with the show! 

Mood lighting over Bath Assembly Rooms
First to take the stage was the amazing interactive fashion and design-technology specialist Cute Circuit. An international name, the fashion house had created light reactive couture garments to walk at Bath In Fashion, through the use of smart textiles and micro-electronics. With beautiful reactivity, the garments were a spectacular display to open the catwalk with and left a lasting impression of the exciting futures of fashion on the audience.

Cute Circuit

Cute Circuit
 Next up was local Bath designer Carole Waller. A collection inspired by the architecture and landscaping of the city of Bath, the designer put forward a series of hand-painted silk garments. Dreamy, creative and local, each piece is uniquely designed and individual, injected with an inspired beauty of the enchanting surroundings. Be sure to pop in and see Carole at her gallery if you're ever in the city; 4 Abbey Green.

Carole Waller
 Next on the adgenda was international luxury retailer L K Bennett. A local favourite of Bath, the designer put forward a series of beautiful pieces inspired by the safari-esque summer colours of the 1970's and Sonia Delaunay's prints. This is an especially strong SS 16 collection with RTW pieces clamouring to be shown off in the upcoming summer.

L K Bennett
 A personal favourite of mine was next on the catwalk. Founded in the mid 1990s with very subtle roots in the sports luxe found in the grungier 90's trends is Brora. Now one of the Britain's leading luxury knitwear brands, the Scottish designer put forward some strong, luxury looks laced with a #WANGSQUAD vibe. Created in one of the oldest mills in Scotland, the luxury knitwear pieces are unique and feminine enough to fill a 'classic' tagline however also display a certain edgy charm that can only be associated with the British charisma. Pop in and say hello over at 6 Bridge Street.


Mentioned in my previous post, next up was the exclusive and somewhat elusive Canadian designer Chanii B. The luxury footwear designer captured hearts on the runway with her beautiful rainbow leather designs and accessories for SS16. Working primarily in the finest Portugese leather, the exquisite designs have made a splash amongst luxury shoppers in Bath, which now plays host to the Chanii B flagship store. Find her over at 9 Milsom Place.

Chanii B Shoes
Next on the adgenda is the quality and sophistication of Winser London. A designer that truly optimises clever cuts and the finest quality above innovation, Winser London truly stood out as a small but competent designer for the SS16 season. With classic and iconic designs in a monochromatic palette, the designer truly catered to the audience at Bath In Fashion providing beautiful investment pieces to build a staple wardrobe. Find them within Rossiters of Bath, Broad Street.

Winser London
A sponsor to the event and of the VIP bloggers day I spent with Bath In Fashion, next on the catwalk was Debenhams. With a portfolio of excellent concessions and trusted designers Debenhams put its best foot forward in demonstrating some of the best pieces it is offering this season. With ladylike, classic cuts in a simple colour palette and some eye-catching prints, Debenhams put forward an easily styled, 1960's inspired seasonal collection perfect for the coming months. Check it out over in Southgate.


Next up was a collection I was super excited to see. Coming from a fashion background at university and knowing the amazing and creative standards produced by design students today I couldn't wait to see the collection produced by Bath Spa University. Presented in a monochromatic palette the designs reeked of high fashion and carried a more couture element than the previous RTW collections. Draped dresses designed by the 2nd year students at Bath, the stunning design details and feminine edges captured the audience. Check out the rest of the designs over at Bath Spa Uni.

Bath Spa Fashion Design (2nd Year)

Bath Spa Fashion Design (2nd Year)
Taking the centre spot on the catwalk programme was EZZA, a local accessories designer that clearly takes inspirations from the summery bohemia that floats over Bath and the Cotswold area. With dreamy accessories and dazzling screen printing on a blazing, summer colour palette; we watched the beautiful scarves glide down the runway. EZZA is sure to become one of the biggest things in the area, be sure to stop in and check out what they have before it all goes! Find them over at 13 Milsom Place.

 Next to walk was my all-time favourite designer and personal highlight of the evening (bar the finale!) Anthropologie have a huge store in Bath which I often find new treasures in. With a bohemian and chilled-out vibe constantly floating over it, Anthropologie's garments never disappoint with a SS16 season to any taste. Easily worn, feminine, charming and unique, Anthropologie introduce SS16 with gorgeous florals and a pastel palette to tickle any tastebuds. Inspired by the English country garden, the relaxed and unfitted designs would suit any shape, size or style and must be seen up close. Be sure to nip in over at Bond Street.




Organic to Bath, next up was the cute and quirky designer labels from Grace & Ted. Offering pre-owned luxury fashion at a fraction of the original value, Grace & Ted are catering to a much needed absence in the market. With an incredibly strong seasonal collection, the store sources elegant, sophisticated and showstopping designer pieces for resale. I'm absolutely enchanted by this little store and was dazzled by the black gown (shown below). Be sure to go and say hello over at 10 Kingsmead Square.

Grace & Ted
Grace & Ted
Grace & Ted
 One of my absolute favourites of the whole evening, I was drooling all over the next collection. BLUE is a designer specialising in sports-luxe and contemporary takes on classic designs. With clean lines, beautiful fabrics and designer quality these designers held a London-hipster vibe whilst at the same time appeasing the countryside-chic audience that made up the majority of Bath In Fashion. I hope big things come to this designer! Be sure to check out the collection at The Loft, Bartlett Street.

 Second to last for the evenings entertainment was a collection from another one of Bath In Fashion's sponsors, Jolly's. The House Of Fraser collections were elegant and extremely demure. As someone who works in a House Of Fraser concession I was somewhat surprised but also impressed with the pieces they selected to display. Catering to the young and creative, Jolly's showcased a SS16 collection that really worked to the primary season trends. Bohemia, 1960's-inspired monochrome and clean lines were all visualised in this innovative collection. Good things from House Of Fraser! Check them out on Milsom Street.


 Finally we got to our finale, our host and the main event! I was especially excited to see the new resort collection by the colourful, experienced and radical designer Dame Zandra Rhodes. With a CV to make Anna Wintour jealous, the designer has put forward a dazzling new RTW collection for SS16. With a backlog of amazing innovation and creativity, Dame Zandra Rhodes closed Bath In Fashion by showcasing her new garments. Laced with a candy-inspired colour palette and finished with a sports-luxe but somewhat punkrock touch the collection radiates the 1980s fever and fierce radicalism that Zandra Rhodes is so famous for. With upside-down visor caps and feminine fabrics printed with clean but bold outlines the collection collaborates a luxury punk appeal with a resort/cruise feel for the rich, quirky and political. 

Dame Zandra Rhodes - Resort SS16

Dame Zandra Rhodes - Resort SS16

Dame Zandra Rhodes - Resort SS16

Finished with a charity auction piece, a showstopping jewellery collaboration between Zandra and Nicholas Wylde that came sweeping down the runway under a rainbow of bejewelled umbrellas the show came to a close. Clutching our goody bags we were ushered out into the reception area where canapes and champagne were in full flow, amidst discussion between Nicholas Wydle sales staff and clients. All a-tipple from the free-flowing bubbly, we made our way slowly towards the exits, fully overwhelmed by the professionalism and excecution of the fashion week. Truly honoured to be representing the blogging platform at the event, I look forward to seeing what other fashion events Bath will hold in the future. A breeding ground for the young and affluent, the city is definitely on the up in terms of the creative arts and it was amazing to see the teriffic standard representing Bath.

Goody bag from Nicholas Wylde!
Thanks Bath In Fashion! See you next year!

27 April 2016

Bath In Fashion VIP Bloggers Day

Good morning all, happy humpday!

I recently attended the annual Bath In Fashion events which took place last weekend in the gorgeous central districts of Bath and at the famous fashion museum. After being asked to represent the local blogging platform at the events, alongside a small group of my peers, I joyously accepted the generous invitation and joined the close-knit group in a VIP event and bloggers day that took place during the #BIFlive event (Thursday 21st). 

Arriving in Bath it was a beautiful, sunny day for a walk around and I immediately stopped to get my daily, dairy-free caffeine kick at M&S; unknowing that I would be pumped full of bubbly and booze on the day ahead.

My first appointment that day was at Debenhams, an event we had all been asked to attend to get the day started in style. I scurried up to the personal shoppers lounge in the department store and was immediately greeted by a wonderfully, warm Debenhams staff and a group of gorgeous girls I could only assume were the other bloggers for the day. After getting aquainted with one-another over a few glasses of prosecco-and-orange we were briefed on how our time would be spent with Debenhams (pimarily at beauty consultations) and then escorted back downstairs for a complimentary makeover with a counter of our choice. Opting for the quality of clinque I sat in bliss as I was treated to an uplifting facial massage using thier new 'Sonic' vibration head and a beautifully light and fresh-scented facial cream that truly sent me off to sleep. This massage is targeted mainly at the older generation, but stimulates the skin by bringing blood to the surface and leaves your face feeling youthful, soft and elasticated (as well as sending you off to sleep!). After this I was rewarded with a full-face of base layer makeup, including the universal 'super-primer' and 'beyond perfecting' foundation and concealer which truly brought new life into my skin. Prone to an oily complexion I struggle to find a suitable base layer but the Clinique staff worked hard to find me something that worked and their products truly are radiant and natural. I absolutely love Clinique products, I just wish they would reconsider their approach to animal testing as they are still a company that operates under these policies. 

Being treated to an uplifing facial massage, deep treatment and full base-layer makeup at Clinique using the Sonic vibration head.
Feeling relaxed and glowing, we moved onto our next appointment at Lancome where the lovely Emily (@TheLittleBeautyGuide) was treated to a mini eye makeover using some stunning colours from the new 'Hypnos' palettes. The makeup artist used naturally warm shades to compliment Emily's paler complexion and bring out her striking eye colour. Emily is primarily a beauty blogger and was super impressed by the results, check her out on IG for more!

Emily (@TheLittleBeautyGuide) being treated to a mini eye makeover at Lancome using the new 'Hypnos' palettes.
 After a quick, and somewhat bubbly, refuel at the personal shopping suite, we were gifted with £50 free to spend on ANYTHING we wanted within Debenhams. Overwhelmed by this, we quickly started running around the floor grabbing armfuls of beautiful clothes to try on in our VIP dressing room. With a few formal events coming up I found a few dresses to try by Coast and Phase Eight, both of whom are having an incredibly strong SS16 season for formal-attire and offered some beautiful and feminine pieces in soft-lace and elegant shades of navy and nude.

Coast and Phase Eight formal-wear SS16 
Baby-blue pastel courts from New Look (Shoes & Accessories)
  After blitzing a trying-on session and snapping some quick pictures, we agreed to go and have a mooch around on the beauty floor to try and find a few of our own personal 'must-haves' and spend our £50 vouchers. Awarded with bulging goodie bags packed with products from the Debenhams house brands and feeling extremely pampered, we shuffled off to the escalators to hunt down some beauty treats. Still glowing from my consultation I zipped back over to the Clinique counter and purchased the primer and foundation that had been used on my face and was rewarded with an armful of extra-treats from the lovely ladies at Clinique including a gorgeous mascara, bath set, moisturiser and Clinique's famous 'chubby' lip stick in a cute shade of strawberry. Thank you!

With an hour to spare before our next appointment, we split up and went to check out some of the in-store events and promotions popping up around Westgate Street and Milsom Place. With a tip-off to check out Boux Avenue we popped our heads in to find fashion illustrator Miss Magpie Spy (aka Niki Groom) offering free sketches to anyone who fancied. Flogging her stationary at the counter, the lovely Niki  had teamed up with Boux Avenue for the day and was over-run by people clamouring for one of her stunning illustrations. With a whimsical and feminine free-hand, she snapped our photos and told us to pop back in a few minutes to collect the finished product. A little later on we popped back in and collected our beautiful drawings along with a little greeting card as an extra goodie. Be sure to check Miss Magpie out on Instagram for more of her beautiful drawings!

Niki Groom hard at work at her drawing in Boux Avenue! (@miss_magpie_spy)
Drawings and stationary by Niki Groom (@miss_magpie_spy)
With a couple of minutes under our belt until our lunchtime appointment we caught some sun in the square with a gorgeous glass of pink bubbly from Scavi & Ray and a miniature oreo cupcake to tickle the palette from Lola's Cupcakes. Delightful!

Little slice of heaven! Lola's Cupcakes (@lolas_cupcakes)

Sophisticated bubbles, a sparkling taste of fashion! from Scavi & Ray (@scaviray) with fellow #BIF Blogger Steph Frayling (@stephfrayling)
Feeling sufficiently bubbly now we headed over to Jolly's for our next appointment, a meet-and-greet with the legendary designer of fashion label 'Biba' Barbara Hulanicki. Greeted with more champagne (iced this time!) by a very handsome gentleman representing POPS Premium Ice Popsicles and a warm greeting from the team at Jolly's we said our hellos to Barbara and lined up to have a quick natter and a bag (specially designed for #BIF bloggers) signing with the lady of the hour. After giving a much-anticipated and thoroughly enjoyed talk at the BIF takeover at the Bath Fashion Museum Barbara presented herself as an incredibly interesting and elegant lady of much insight and many years of experience within luxury fashion, not to mention a beautiful label bursting with colour and boasting a lifelong longevity and many, many devoted followers.

POPS premium prosecco ice-pops (@popspoparazzi)

The #BIF Bloggers team posing for a picture with Barbara Hulanicki of BIBA
Tote bag designed by Barabara for #BIF bloggers

Starstruck! Myself posing with the glamourous Barbara Hulanicki of BIBA
 After being prized away from Barbara we were shown down to Jolly's Tea Room, which is in the basement of Jolly's in Bath for a complimentary afternoon tea, cakes and more champagne to refuel ready for part two of the day. With impeccable service and sweet treats to absolutely die for, Jolly's fully impressed me. I will definitely be bringing my mother back soon for a day out!

Gilded menu at Jolly's Tea Room Bath

A sample of the delightful treats we were given to enjoy at Jolly's Tea Room (featuring @JessicaJYoung)
Smiles all round from the #BIF blogging team!
Feeling suffienciently celebrity by this point, we then split up and went out seperate ways to check out the various other promotions and events popping up all over some of Bath's best designer stores. First up on the agenda was my all-time favourite lifestyle designer Anthropologie. The store had teamed up with the award-winning writer and fashion professor Iain R Webb to promote his 'Vogue Colouring Book' by encouraging people to come in and take part in the huge Vogue colouring wall. Iain was there in person to talk about his book and generally chitchat with people interested in his work and I said a quick hello before diving into the colouring pot to have a go myself. Anthropologie is definitely in the running to be my all-time favourite designer, and thier SS16 collections were making me drool. Thick, coloured lace, joyous florals and dazzling embroidery paired with an earthy, lifestyle touch and you have the freedom and originality that is the Anthropologie brand.

Vogue Colouring Book by Iain R Webb (@hopeandglitter)
My contribution to the Anthropologie Vogue Colouring Wall

Anthropologie SS16 (@anthropologie)


Next up we popped into Joules to meet Sophie, the brains behind the beautiful Joules prints and print design. With a little station set up to discuss her work and draw miniature post-cards for people, Sophie told us all about the nautical-country fusions and inspirations behind the brand's gorgeous SS16 collection and the creative process that happens behind one of her prints. Wearing my own Joules polo shirt that day, I was fascinated to pick the brains of one of the designers behind such a recognisable print brand. Dazzled by the gorgeous collection, Joules is such a beautiful heritage brand and will continue to have longevity with it's seasonal prints and collections. Lovely to meet you Sophie!

The lovely Sophie designing prints at Joules Bath (@joulesclothing)

In the making! Prints at Joules (@joulesclothing)
Lastly, with an exclusive tip-off from the #BIF team, I went to check out the elusive Chanii B Footwear boutique hidden in Milsom Place. With an eccentric aesthetic and amazing use of metallic, rainbow leather I was enchanted by the little footwear designer. Exclusive to Bath, Chanii B moved over to to the city with the intentions of staying a few months to promote her pop-up shop but ended up laying down roots in Bath due to an explosion of popularity amongst the locals. Working in fine, portugese leather Chanii B shoes are wildly coloured, rainbow explosions and tailored to the highest standard providing clients with luxury and an original fashion perspective. Although I do not believe in using any animal products in fashion and would not promote any products that do, leather is a hard product to avoid as it (without doubt) produces extremely high quality garments and accessories. Concluding this, Chanii B is a beautiful little boutique and Bath should be proud to host innovative designer boutiques such as this.

Chanii B Boutique interior (@shoesbychaniib)

Fine rainbow leathers from Portugal (@shoesbychaniib)

That concludes the VIP Bloggers day I spent in Bath. I made some lovely friends and hope we can continue to stimulate the growth of the fashion industry within Bath and the surrounding area. Thank you to all the brands and people that contributed to such a successful day and I look forward to meeting you all again in the future! Watch this space for trend reports from the Bath In Fashion designer show I attended following this event. 

All of the brands mentioned above took part or sponsored Bath In Fashion and the bloggers day and could therefore be said to have some influence over my opinion however this is not the case and everything detailed above is my own opinion and unsponsored. The tags and credits listed are ALL to Instagram accounts.
© Undressed
Maira Gall