Archive | April, 2010

Shoe Hell: Ashish x Topshop wedges

27 Apr

Yesterday, inexplicably, I was exiled into shoe hell. I can tell you, it’s not a nice place to be! Let me tell you how it all started. It started yesterday. There I was, innocently going about my business then BAM! Ashish x Topshop wedges enter my stream of consciousness. I’m not sure what triggered them but suddenly everything made sense, it was a moment of clarity. If I had the zebra print (or even leopard print) wedges, my entire wardrobe would just ‘go’ together, amazing combinations I never thought possible would look effortlessly amazing together. They were like the missing piece of the jigsaw. 

Of course, I know they are a year old, but I tried them on every so often, the last time was a couple of months ago. However, a quick 10 minute search on and Google turned into 45 minutes spent scouring the entire Internet to no avail. Well, apart from a soul-less eBayer selling them for more than double the retail price! 

And so I entered shoe hell – needing/wanting/craving shoes which I had absolutely no way of getting. Never one to give up easily, I carried on searching for the wedges but also searched for a suitable replacement. Office, Dune, Topshop and Asos were no use. But good old Kurt Geiger, well Carvela, came good in the end. What do you think of these? Close but no cigar? A good close second? 

* Source Rawhem, ScrambledFashion 

Sketchbook Mag Pop-Up

25 Apr

I’m sure most of you London-based bloggers have passed through the Sketchbook Mag pop-up shop in Carnaby Street, if not…why the hell not?! Based at 10 Newburgh Street, London’s best pop-up has been in residence since 30th March celebrating fashion, music and art. There has been an absolutely fantastic program of events and talks and workshops involving stylists and bloggers such as Susie Bubble, illustration classes, live music, sample sales and lots of cupcakes! The whole space is so inspiring, there are amazing illustrations on the walls of the main gallery, a themed room and two screening rooms. Totally in awe of Sketchbook‘s editor Wafa (an absolute doll) and her team, they have pulled of something really, really special. So special in fact that the pop-up shop has been extended, so make sure you plan a trip to Newburgh Street.

Here are some pictures of this amazing space, courtesy of the super-sweet Winnie from Diamond Canopy and super-talented Kit from Style Slicker:

The mini blogger meet up! Please excuse my face/hair, I was fluey 😦
Fiona (SOS), Me, Winnie (Diamond Canopy), Kit (Style Slicker)

For more information on Sketchbook…

Earth Day Fashion

22 Apr

Happy Earth Day lovelies! For those of you who don’t know, Earth Day is an American initiative to raise awareness and appreciation for the Earth’s environment. It’s being celebrated by an estimated 1 billion people worldwide! It was founded in 1970 under the premise that “all people, regardless of race, gender, income, or geography, have a moral right to a healthy, sustainable environment.” I think it’s such a beautiful notion, and it got me thinking about sustainability and fashion.

The words sustainable and fashion haven’t always gone hand in hand. In fact, the fashion 
industry has come under fire for decades for it’s use of fur and exploiting both labour and raw materials such as cotton. Cotton has a huge carbon footprint for production and manufacture, organic cotton is obviously a much better option. But I don’t think you need me to go on about how cruel fur farms are, and that we can’t continue to use up Earth’s resources at the rate we’re currently consuming them. It’s a bit of a no brainer, but unfortunately, these are still big issues today. Just two years ago, Primark was highlighted as one of the worst offenders on the high-street by using child labour to keep down their costs.

That’s not to say there hasn’t been progress, in fact nowadays it’s pretty easy to pick up both Fairtrade and Organic clothing on the high-street and there is plenty of faux fur around to make the real thing seem unnecessary. There are plenty of options: Emma Watson has designed a lovely range for People Tree, Stella McCartney has an organic range, Simple Shoes specialise in sustainable footwear, Monkeee Genes are proud to produce jeans ethically, ECO’Neill is an eco-friendly range from surf label O’Neill. But sometimes the experience of buying something, or having something which has a history and a story are much, much better than buying new…

Buying vintage and thrifting are so commonplace now, there are literally hundreds of vintage stores in London and thousands of sites and eBay items. While it’s a great way to be sustainable as well as getting a unique item, the popularity of vintage has sent prices soaring so gorgeous 80s dresses aren’t quite the bargain they used to be.

I’m a fairly moody shopper, sometimes I’m really up for diligently searching in hopes of finding a gem, other times I just want to find something online. I’ve gotten a couple of absolute gems from eBay, but it’s so touch and go. I recently got a 70s leather lace up bustier and fur hat (am not going to touch on that can of worms..yet!) which I was very happy with but received other items which I’ve been really disappointed with. Most of the vintage clothing sites I know of – Nasty Gal, Urban Collection (closed now I think) – are US based. There are a couple of lovely UK sites, Rokit have a site but I prefer to go into a store and I also love Covert Candy

My eBay wins

Swishing parties are also a fun way to be sustainable. Instead of throwing away your unwanted clothes, you bring them along to a swishing party and swap with other people who have bought along things they don’t want/need anymore. It’s such a simple concept and not new by any means, but it’s really growing in popularity. is a fabulous resource for a ton more information as well as upcoming swishing parties. 

Tampax swishing party I attended with KB

There are lots and lots of ways to become more ‘green’, start seeing it as a way of life rather than just a buzz word. Prove that fashion isn’t just a superficial in this season and out the next industry. Are you concerned about being eco/green and sustainable fashion? Do you have any tips or favourite stores/websites? 

Made Her Think

20 Apr

Anyone who knows me or has seen me knows I love piling on jewellery. I usually wear a few bracelets and cuffs and I’ve been known to wear a couple of necklaces layered up but rings are my real ‘thing’. My jewellery box is overflowing with them at the moment and I tend to pile them all on at once! I once counted 16 rings, which may seem like a lot but I’m not quite at the same level at Karl Lagerfeld, who was quoted as saying: “Today I counted 19. Sometimes I go up to 23. I have only 10 fingers like everybody else, hm?”

I don’t just like any old ring though, I’m pretty fussy but once I find one I like I’ll wear it to death. My current favourite is my YSL Arty, believe me when I say I went through a lot to get this (Twitter followers had a blow-by-blow account!) but it was well worth the hassle. 

Next on my wish list are a couple of rings from New York jeweller Made Her Think. The rings themselves are fairly simple which makes them ideal for layering up. But they are quirky enough to be worn on their own. I also love jewellery which is slightly gothic, my rosary necklace has been worn to death! I would describe Made Her Think as gothic, but a soft gothic and the pieces have a ‘tough’ feel to them. 

Spine Ring – $416

Chain ring glove – $575

Pearl Knuckle Buster – $196

Vertebrae Knuckle Buster – $276

Double Band Chain Ring – $370

Talon Knuckle Buster – $110

Gemini Goes Both Ways – $550

Skyling Ring – $92

* Source Made Her Think

Jimmy Choo Trainer Hunt!

19 Apr

Ok ladies, the hunt is on for some Jimmy Choos! Got this in my inbox today and it’s too delicious not to share. Hangbags at the ready, there are some Choos at stake!

To celebrate Jimmy Choo’s first trainer collection, they have launched a city-wide treasure hunt giving you the chance to win a pair of their new trainers!! 

All you have to do is follow the elusive Jimmy Choo trainers via Twitter/Foursquare/Facebook (links above) as they make their stylish journey around London. The trainers will update you on their whereabouts in real time, be it the Saatchi Gallery or Shoreditch House, the trainers are said to have an uber-stylish journey planned. And if they check into a venue near you, you can catch them to keep them. How amazing is that! I’m not really down with Foursquare, but I’ve tweeted Catch-a-Choo on Twitter and hope to bump into some trainers on my travels this weekend. 

Shoe-excitement aside, I think this is a prime example of how companies should be harnessing social media. Rather than building Facebook pages or Twitter accounts which don’t engage with the consumer, Jimmy Choo are really trying hard to create a buzz. 

The Outnet £1 Sale Shambles

17 Apr

Yesterday marked the first birthday of Net-a-Porter’s little sister, The Outnet. The designer discount site has been immensely popular since it’s launch, mostly due to it’s regular flash sales. I’ll put my hand up to admit that Outnet stalking had turned into one of my favourite pastimes, I know many of you were the same. There was something strangely hypnotic about watching the price of a Marc Jacobs bag tumble before your eyes. 

To celebrate their first birthday, The Outnet went all out with a £1 designer sale. The sale to end all sales. This was all very heavily marketed and as the big date, April 16th, drew closer, the hype just grew and grew. But as I logged on to Twitter, I knew something was wrong. Everyone was complaining about not being able to log in, the site crashing and not being able to check out. This happened a couple of months ago during their pop-up sale. But seeing as you had to RSVP to have access to the £1 sale, I had assumed that they would have looked at their server capacity in relation to the expected demand. 

It’s been an absolute PR nightmare for them, with many a disgruntled fashionista turning to Twitter and Facebook to vent their frustrations. I have to say, I feel that the fallout was handled very badly, my eyes popped out of my head when I read them tweet ‘It was always going to be a bit of a lottery’! I also think ity was very bad practise to be talking about the number of orders when so many people were frustrated and disappointed by the sales shambles. The best analogy I read was this:’It’s like being invited to be VIP party, being pickedup by a chauffeaur and being punched in the face upon arrival’. Here’s a little representation of the type of feedback across Facebook and Twitter:

It was very reminiscent of the American Apparel crazy sale madness, see below video. To be honest, these two events have left a very sour taste in my mouth. I feel that companies are far too busy creating hype and noise about their sales to worry about how to manage them logistically, whether that’s extra security in real life or working out server loads online. What do you think of The Outnet madness? Did  you manage to get anything? Did you get caught up in the American Apparel riot?! 

Model Spotlight: Karlie Kloss

13 Apr
Seventeen year old Karlie Kloss is already a sensation. Her resume to date is rather impressive for someone so young, her first shoot was for Teen Vogue at the tender age of 14! She’s spends part of her life as a regular high-school student and the other part as one of the most in demand models in the industry, last year she was the most photographed model for American Vogue.
She is a catwalk favourite, she studied ballet for 6 years before becoming a model so she has natural poise and grace. She’s also racked up an impressive number of editorials, in some images her literally leaps out of the page at you. It’s no surprise that many big names in the industry have pegged her as the next American supermodel.
One of the nicest facts I’ve learnt about her is that she loves baking, she baked Alexander Wang cookies when she went to a fitting! How adorable is that? 
“She’s a chameleon,” says Dior designer John Galliano. “She becomes this other creature in front of the lens. She thinks about her role, her pose, her part. She’s able to step in front of [photographer] Steven Meisel and all of us and be totally in control and self-assured, delivering pose after perfect pose”.

“She’s my lucky closer,” says Jason Wu, who has assigned her the coveted finale spot at his show for the past four seasons straight. “She has such presence. You see so many girls who are so young; it’s not very often that you find one with Karlie’s poise. I don’t think we’ve seen that since the supermodel days.” Galliano agrees, “She has a frisson of old-school glamour.”