Archive | February, 2011

London Fashion Week – PPQ AW11

25 Feb
To me, London Fashion Week means supporting younger designers and emerging talents, that’s what makes LFW so special to me. But once in a while, it’s nice to go to one of the big ticket, impossible to get into shows. That’s why I was over the moon to attend the notorious PPQ show this season. I received amazing front row tickets courtesy of Glacéau vitaminwater who are the official soft drink supplier to London Fashion Week. Front row means mostly unobstructed pictures, so enjoy.  

Jaime Winstone, staying hydrated with Glacéau vitaminwater, official soft drink supplier to London Fashion Week

Me interviewing Amy and Percy of PPQ. 
I was also given five minutes with Amy and Percy, the designers behind PPQ! Huge thanks Vitaminwater. Here’s how the interview went:

Reena: Congratulations on another fantastic collection. What inspired you this season? 
PPQ: We were really inspired by history, in particular the Elizabethan and Jacobean eras. 
Reena: I absolutely loved the 90s hiphop soundtrack but it didn’t seem to be an obvious connection with the collection. Are you heavily inspired by music? 
PPQ: Yes, definitely. We loved the way it juxtaposed with the ladylike collection. 
Reena: Internationally, London is a bit of a wildcard with some editors skipping the first couple of days of LFW. What do you think of the London fashion scene? 
PPQ: London is a hub for young people who lead fashion. It’s the centre of street style, this is where it began. Everyone helps and supports you when you’re new and trying to progess. 
Reena: What do you see in the future for PPQ?
PPQ: We want to continue ranges and collaborations with other people and definitely want to open another store in London. 

Glacéau vitaminwater is the official soft drink supplier to London Fashion Week – keeping fashionistas hydrated all week long. 

London Fashion Week – Ashley Isham AW11

23 Feb
Last season, I was blown away by Ashley Isham’s ethereal goddess gown so I was very much looking forward to seeing the AW11 collection. The chaos and hordes of people outside the show was a precursor for the dramatic collection that awaited. The theme of the collection was ‘Enchanted forest’ and I couldn’t pick anyone more suitable to design darkly romantic and glamourous dresses for mystical woodland nymphs.

Surprisingly, the show opened with shorter dresses with a floral forest print. The form fitting silhouette and sexy cut out details ensured that the glamour Ashley brings to longer gowns was not lost. Ashley also included plenty of the show-stopping gowns he’s renowned for in murky purple-blues as well as brighter purples and red with metal embellished details and his signature twisting and draping. Metallic fabrics also featured heavily, contrasting with soft, sheer tulle and lace. 

London Fashion Week – Bernard Chandran AW11

22 Feb

I experienced every blogger’s nightmare during LFW – my DSLR battery died during a show. Luckily I had my compact as a back up. Unfortunately the memory card was full after a couple of snaps, so apologies for not getting snaps of some of the looks I loved the most! However, they’re all available at Vogue.

Bernard Chandran is known for his artful , sharp tailoring and innovative cuts. Next season, his silhouettes are structured with nipped in waistlines complemented with folded peplum details. Known for his use of embellishment, he turned his hand to experimenting with zips this season. My favourite look was a red lace gown, it was absolutely stunning, unfortunately I didn’t manage to get a snap. The dress was beautifully light and delicate juxtaposed with an industrial zip. Colours were bold – red, orange, pink, electric blue and black. The luxe collection used fabrics ranging from leather, lace, silk and velvet but the one that garnered the most gasps were the feather pieces.

London Fashion Week – Backstage at Jasper Garvida AW11

22 Feb

Regular readers will know that I adore Jasper Garvida, both the brand and the man behind the label. Last season, I went behind the scenes and found it was the best way to appreciate his beautiful creations was up close. Pictures from the front row don’t quite do the workmanship and detailing justice. I fell in love with the large paillettes in the last collection – especially the shoulders on the dress I borrowed – and I was glad to see Jasper had used these in abundance in this collection. Gorgeous silks and lace were deftly twisted, draped and folded to create a collection which really raised the bar this fashion week. My words really can’t do these pieces justice, so just have a look at my pictures. They’re worth a thousand words. 

London Fashion Week – Jean-Pierre Braganza AW11

21 Feb
Over at new LFW venue Northumberland House, it was a full house for Jean-Pierre Braganza’s hotly anticipated show. I’m sure the venue was over capacity, I was standing quite a few rows back and had to crane my neck to get a view but oh it was worth it. The collection, named Positronyx, it is designed for a woman who is a leader and has influences which range from science fiction to the post-cyber world. These influences were abundant in the strong, confident collection which featured cut out and sheer panels, sharp silhouettes, strong shoulders, oversized collars, hard shiny fabrics and asymmetric cuts. Statement red and black diamante looked gorgeous.

London Fashion Week – Corrie Nielson AW11

21 Feb
I’ve got to admit, like many others, I wasn’t familiar with Corrie Nielson’s work before the show. But as the winner of last year’s Fashion Fringe, she will definitely be one to watch in coming years. The show left me intrigued, the reason I love young designers is that the progression between each season is so evident. The first few looks were a little lacklustre. I was unsure of some of the cuts, they seemed a little unusual and didn’t sit well on the models. The dull grey two piece suit was a definite low point but there were some nice details.

A beautiful voluminous, bottle green slightly iridescent cape caught my attention though and the show really got into its stride. Beautiful, decadent jewel tones which looked like they came straight out of a beautiful oil painting in the National Gallery were coupled with intricate folding and draping with exaggerated shoulder details. The regal, opulent collection was clearly influenced by the Elizabethan era and haute couture – the dramatic structured shapes and extravagant, lavish touches worked very well together. The last two looks – a beautiful gold dress and even bigger black dress – were almost impossible to walk in and beyond regal. After working for Vivienne Westwood and being picked by Galliano as winner of Fashion Fringe, I’m very excited to see more from Corrie Nielson. She’s one to watch and could very well be London’s next design star.

London Fashion Week – Jena Theo AW11

21 Feb
The next stop on my super hectic first day was Jena Theo at the new On/Off venue – Mercer Street Studios. While it was much closer than the previous venue at Victoria House, I don’t think it had the same capacity which resulted in a bit of a scrum outside and a squeeze inside. While it may not be pleasant outside, it results in a buzz of anticipation inside. I’ve been going to Jena Theo’s shows for a couple of seasons now and adore the voluminous shapes, slouchy layers and opulent fabrics which lend themselves well to their soft silhouettes. However, the punchy, pulsing music and lasers before the show set the tone for a collection that was slightly harder, more rock than previous shows.

Black was definitely the new black, though there was a sprinkling in whites and neutrals to prevent a completely mundane black out collection. All of the Jena Theo signatures were there making this an instantly covetable collection but there were a few surprises punctuating the collection – most notably the huge denim duvet coat. It was a bit controversial, people either loves it or hated it. My thoughts? Well, it may not be overly practical but I loved it, statement coats are definitely necessary in a cold, snowy London. The collection as a whole had a few critics, but I’m a fan. I don’t think there’s anything wrong with having a certain aesthetic. The beautiful billowing silhouettes and luxe fabrics make for beautiful collections season after season. London fashion doesn’t have to be controversial and ‘out there’, simple, understated collections have a more lasting impact.

* Images – London Fashion Week