Sunday, 30 November 2008

MOST COVETED



I fell in love with the dress that Diana wore on X Factor on Saturday night. I've managed to track it down to Darlingclothes.com. The sole stockist is a boutique called Leila and lucky for me, one of the three branches is just round the corner from me. I might have to take a trip there tomorrow afternoon, though it's currently sold out on the website so I don't hold out much hope. Unlike Diana I would plan to wear it with shoes (what is with the barefoot thing??).

I have a magpie-like obsession with appliqu├ęd sequins and pearls at the moment. The Heaven and Earth dress arrived on Friday and then a friend told me she could have got me one for free! It pays to have friends in high places. So I'm sending my one back and saving myself £60!

Photos from darlingclothes.com

Thursday, 27 November 2008

HEAVEN AND EARTH

I have to admit to being sick of the 'credit crunch' talk but to be honest it is mostly doing me favours at the moment. It's like the high street is throwing at us, discounts, promotions and other incentives to buy (free breakfast on Oxford St tomorrow morning if you go 'early bird' shopping at 7.30am. I must admit it is tempting, not least to avoid the Christmas crowds). And for those of us without such worries as mortgage rates or rising petrol prices, this means we can buy what we were going to buy anyway, for less. Christmas shopping has never been this easy or this cheap.
I must look at these Heaven & Earth dresses on Asos.com at least once a day and today they are magically down to £95 from £140. I bought the second one. The belt in that image is also tormenting me, it's used in so many shoots but never appears on the site to buy!



The only downside to all this mark down is spotting clothes you own, 30% cheaper than you paid for them. Bah humbug to that.

Tuesday, 25 November 2008

MASQUERADE

It's that time of year again, time to think about the Christmas party. This year's theme is Masquerade, we are only required to wear a mask and dress as we please - the more decadent and elegant the better!
I am feeling decidedly uninspired by the Christmas dress offer this year, probably because I was working on evening dresses several months ago and therefore nothing on the high street looks new to me now. I am craving muted florals, denim all in ones, coral and new neutrals inspired by the SS09 shows (in particular Preen, Alexander Wang and Charles Anastase). And seeing S/S press days in the last week has not helped one bit.

But back to the task at hand, I have decided to delve into the back of my wardrobe this year for my party outfit and will resurrect a tutu skirt first and last seen on New Years Eve nearly 3 years ago. I have almost decided that I'm going to stick with 'festive' black, perhaps some gold accessories and let the mask do the talking.

I wanted to make my mask, but time is running out. I have my eye on jewel coloured feathers in in Angels, but if I had the time Nick Knight's Moet Tribute would be my inspiration:









This final one is one of my favourites for its simplicity. Sadly given that I will be getting ready for the party with about 150 other ladies, sharing two bathrooms and roughly two full length mirrors between us, I can't be too ambitious. I'm probably going to be doing my make up in a hand mirror and simultaneously answering my last few emails, drinking champagne as well as trying to be an active member of the social committee and ensuring all for the night goes to plan. I am however, entering the foray of fancy dress this Saturday night. I am entertaining the idea of Zorro (theme: heroes and villains) though my costume has yet to come to fruition, but some kind of mask and eyelashes combo could definitely be on the cards. Photos to follow I should think.

photos from getty images and showstudio.com

Sunday, 16 November 2008

STRIKE A POSE


Style icons?

I love Cheryl Cole as much as the next person, I love her feisty attitude on a Saturday night when she answers back to Simon Cowell and defends her acts to no end. But when I read that she could be set for a Vogue cover, I had to ask myself is this the best that we can do for a British style icon? Of course sitting next to Danni -I can only move my eyeballs I've had so much botox- Minogue, she would appear to be a natural beauty but having seen her transformation over the years, it is obvious that hers is a beauty elevated by fake hair, eyelash extensions, nail tips and fake tan aided by hairstylists, beauticians and stylists alike. And as for her sartorial choices, she is not exactly pushing the boundaries of creativity. Yes after ditching the tracksuits followed by a few months on the heartbreak diet and having made a few high fashion friends, it's undeniable that she looks great in virtually everything she steps out in, but for me there is nothing aspirational about being a clothes horse.

I hate to come across as one of those people who bangs on about 'real women' because honestly I think there is room for everyone and I am not actually anti-Cheryl at all, I just think this latest move is a (bad) sign of where British fashion is going. There is room for the Cheryls (and the Colleens) somewhere but before all creativity is stamped out in favour of the 'look what my stylist picked out for me' look, I think it's about time we got back to grassroots. Just take a look around the blogosphere, Lookbook.nu or Chictopia for the countless individuals who are putting together creative looks everyday and creating trends rather than following them.

TOPSHOPPER



The credit crunch really must be affecting footfall this Christmas because Topshop are giving away all manner of freebies and discounts on their website. The retail giant isn't usually one to give away discount codes and they've really gone to town with the presentation. All you have to do to be in with a chance of winning (and everyone is guaranteed a prize apparently) is to play their enchanting winter fairytale game at www.topshopchristmasfairytale.com. I won a 10% voucher which puts me one step closer to that Markus Lupfer Jumper that I have been obsessing about.

Monday, 10 November 2008

DAY DREAMING

If I hadn't just bought a coat (and presuming I had a spare £695 just lying around waiting to be spent) this would be the coat I would buy.

Tuesday, 4 November 2008

ONE CHARMING GIRL



It was only a week or so ago that I was blogging about Steph’s mention in Elle Magazine and now the fabulous Jackie has been featured in this December’s Vogue. I think it’s great that the big fashion magazines are picking up on independent fashion sites (even though I secretly want to keep some of these places to myself). Independent designers have such an important place in fashion and it is refereshing to see alternatives to the monotony of the high street.

The great thing about This Charming Girl is that it doesn’t rest on its laurels. Jackie's gorgeous limited edition creations fashionned from vintage charms mixed with new, are always one step ahead of the game. Topshop et al might have caught on to the vintage charm trend, but you're likely to see the person sitting next to you on the tube wearing the same thing.

I am currently obsessing about this watering can necklace, which is the perfect mix of kitsch and cool:


Photo from www.thischarminggirl.com

Saturday, 1 November 2008

REASONS TO BUY VOGUE


I think I was lucky today my local shop had the December issue of Vogue, on 1st November! Unheard of. I have recently found my attention to British Vogue wavering, but with the Fantastic Fashion Fantasy issue I am a firm fan once again (now say that 3 times quickly!).

Reason to buy the December issue:

1. A truly enchanting shoot by Tim Walker featuring Tim Burton and Helena Bonham-Carter amongst others, which captures the world of storybook imagination amazingly. The shots of Karen Elson are especially beautiful (in bed with a crocodile and on stilts as The BFG) but I think my favourite is of Georgia May Jagger inspired by Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.



2. Beautiful beautiful artwork by Su Blackwell, who creates sculptures from the pages of old books (and is exhibiting in London at the end of the month).

3. Jourdan Dunn and Lily Donaldson photographed by Nick Knight in some of fashion's most extravagant and avant-garde creations, including Chalayan's wooden table skirt (which reminds me, I am very much looking forward to the exhibition next year!).



4. "Dream Walls" of likes, loves and doodles created by a selection of designers especially for Vogue. I adore Luella's. "I like Wednesday Adams' plaits". I want to make my own.

5. The pull out cover features Kate Moss looking beautiful in Dior Couture. (I am going to ignore the "Fashion is my passion" quote ie the most overused phrase in the fashion industry and one you are told to avoid like the plague in personal statements, interviews etc. Especially now it has been coined by the Bratz dolls. Vogue you could have done better than that).
The real draw of the cover for me is the beautiful typefaces designed by Jo Ratcliffe which feature throughout the issue.