Thursday, 27 May 2010

Something For The Weekend?

The long weekend is nearly upon us. In the U.K. we have an extra day for rest and relaxation this Monday. For those of you who are visting London this weekend, or if you are a Londoner who has decided to stay home for the Bank Holiday (and who could blame you, what with this bothersome volcanic ash cloud wavering around Europe) then here are a few tips for having fun in town this weekend. Pack your trunk, or even a neat little weekend Liberty print hardcase by Merci for Liberty and head to The Dean Street Townhouse for a night or two. Situated in the heart of Soho, its a great central location hotel for taking in some unique exhibitions on show in London at the moment. Hurry round the corner onto Marshall Street to catch a look at the 'Browns: 40 Years of Fashion Innovation' before it ends on Sunday. Witness how, over the last forty years Joan and Sidney Burnstein, the founders of Browns boutique, have changed and championed the way we buy designer fashion goods. Mrs B (as she is known) has a keen and sharp eye for new design talent and over the years has discovered and helped nuture the successful international careers of John Galliano and Christopher Kane to name just a few. With the help of Paolo Roversi ,whose photographs of their fashion friends in key garments that have been bought and sold by the South Molton Street boutique over the years , is a feature of the exhibtion and turns a history of high fashion retail into an art form. Then, make the most of not having to get up for work on Monday morning and head out for a few drinks. This sunday, Happy Sunday party returns, as it does the end of every month, to The Century Club on Shaftesbury Avenue. Raise the rooftop to the delightful sounds of DJ Ben Jamin and crew for a cocktail or two without the worry of it being a schoolnight! Have a great weekend dear readers, whatever the weather.
Pictures: Top left - Merci for Liberty mini suitcase
Top right - The Dean Street Townhouse
Bottom left - Browns Exhibition flyer.

Tuesday, 18 May 2010

Autumn/Winter 2010 Beauty Review - The Return of The Rockabilly

Next winter beauty takes a trip back to the 1950's, with a particular reference to the mod-rocker styles of the era. The mood of this story was summed up perfectly at Isabel Marant's Autumn /Winter 2010 show. The collection comprises reworked fifties classics such as fitted jeans rolled-up mid calf and little faded denim jackets. Runway model, Ginta Lapina paraded the catwalk with a long swishy ponytail, exaggerated cats-flick eyeliner, and a little dotty knotted scarf around the neck to complete the retro look. Giambattista Valli echoed the mood with his models' eyes painted with thick liquid-ticks framed a full layer of false eyelashes and a stripe of white liner high on the cheekbone. This gave a modern edge to this otherwise classic make-up. Dsquared opted for the vamped up version of this look, pairing over-exaggerated wing shaped black and midnight blue eyeshadow with a strong red lip. For those of you whose make-up artistry skills can't quite master the perfect liquid eyeliner, check out and cheat with a pair of Shu Uemura Egerie leather cased false eyelashes. A glossy eye line extension and finished off with a dotting of Swarovski crystals, they are an effective way to achieve instant fifties glamour. At Dolce Gabbana, velvet red lips and thick strong brows was the message they were sending out for next season's make-up. Since eyebrow threading has become so widely available, fashion conscious types are having a rebellious moment and shying away from the slim arched shapes so recognisable of the threading technique. Make-up artists are starting to groom eyebrows into more angular shapes similar to those of the screen sirens of the 1950s and London girls who are always quick to pick up on a new trend have been spotted sporting heavy pencilled brows squared off in the middle to complement their cute quiffed fringes. Hairstyles are also taking influence from this era. This spring-summer's Dolly top knot evolves into a rockabilly bun for next winter. The best examples of this quiff up-do were at Fendi where the models' hair was piled to the top of the head, twisted and pinned to fall and flop over the forehead giving the illusion of a teddy boy fringe.
Pictures: Top - Dsquared a/w 2010
Middle left- Shu Uemura Egerie false eyelashes
Middle right - Audrey Hepburn inspires the shape for on trend eyebrows
Bottom - Fendi a/w 2010

A Spring in Your Step

According to my favourite shoe repair man in Timpson's, this spell of nice weather is here to stay, right up until the middle of September (Got to love him for his optimism, personally I am pessimist when it comes to expecting a Great British Summer) Although, if his meteorological sources are correct in their forecasting for the coming months, then now is the time to invest in some summer sandals. Whilst waiting for the appropriate weather to kick in, I have been collating a page filled with sandals that work well with the mood of fashion this of season. Firstly think chunky. Platform soles and heavy rectangle heels are a modern complement to the goddess dresses and tops that are key trend this spring. Although ,when wearing with drapey dresses do avoid styles with straps to the ankle or calf otherwise it can end up looking like an ancient Roman/Grecian cliche. Styles with a wooden sole and heel like the Tods Sacha (Top far right of collage) make a great day or evening shoe. Wear, as styled in the collage with socks and added with an 'A' line skirt for daytime . They look just as glam and sexy in the evening paired with a perfect pedi. If you have had enough of extremely high heels then go for something with a more wearable height. The lovely named 'Lia' sandal from Topshop ticks all the trend boxes for this summer . They are 'so me' that I am starting to think they designed them with me in mind. It's also the first thing ever that I have come across with my name on it, and I love them. Right down to the colour and of course the purse friendly price. This type of sandal is also good complement to all the utility clothing around right now. Cargo style shorts and trousers are back this summer. Cropped and rolled up cargo trousers had their moment around 8 years ago and were matched with a stiletto sandal or the classic Balenciaga S/S 02 runway sandals. It's too soon to recreate that total look now without feeling dated. By wearing with something new like the Miu Miu silk printed shoes for example, it creates a fresh vibe for 2010 cargos. Or go modern retro. Its not too soon to dig out the old Candie's mules and clogs from the mid-90s. Seen on the model in the collage here in nude and if you need further reference, check out first the scene with the Mayor's girlfriend in the iconic movie The Big Lebowski. She is wearing green Candies while painting her toes with the same shade of emerald from 90s beauty must-have Hard Candy nail polish. While this was all very cool in the nineties, for 2010 I would recommend a nice coral or classic red nail polish on the toes. Paul and Joe No15 nail enamel works well with tan and nude shoes while YSL's red No2 is so classic it works with just about any sandal shade.
Pictures: Top - Spring/Summer Sandal Collage
Middle: The Topshop 'Lia' Sandal

Tuesday, 11 May 2010

Whatever The Weather, Get In Some Leather

It's almost mid May and by now we should be giving our spring wardrobes an airing. Not so in London. The sudden return to what feels like winter is putting a daily dilemma on getting dressed in the morning. Are you desperate to leave trousers and tights in the drawer and release your legs out in the open? Yes me too. In my research for how to get through this I have found one rather good look that is bridging the gap from winter to warmer temperatures. The Little Leather Skirt is shaping up to be the saviour for both a daytime and evening look . And it's a garment that will keep the chill of the thighs and still have that legs-out appeal. High street newcomer, Mint Velvet has included a perfectly cut little grey number in their latest spring collection. The brand, launched last autumn is designing clothes that say 'Relaxed Glamour'. With this in mind, my idea for a daytime look is to pair this skirt with a satin cami, cardy and lace-up brogues with ankle socks. For an informal evening event, channel the minimalist mood with a basic t-shirt and a few well chosen accessories. But keep it minimal, let the skirt do the talking. Day Birger et Mikkelsen summed it up nicely too with a fitted-high waisted leather skirt from their Spring 2010 collection. Worn as shown here with a buttoned-up to the neck crisp white shirt , loose socks with sandals is a great way to style the little leather lifesaver once the warmer weather finally kicks in.
Pictures: Left- Mint Velvet grey leather skirt
Right: Day Birger et Mikkelsen
Bottom: Agyness Deyn styles a little leather skirt with Rocky Horror t-shirt and Lulu Guiness Lips clutch

So This Is How We (Rocked and) Rolled.........

Well done to Deborah & co for providing us with the fabulous second installment to The Grand Vintage Attire Ball and Pageant. It is surely one of the best and fun filled alternative nights out in London . Attracting revellers from all walks of life whose love of a good dress up and dance come together to admire, inspire and even share style tips. Vintage Purists mixed with dressed-up dabblers in a friendly atmostphere exchanging addresses on where to source a great outfit or pointing out hairstylists who could sort you out with an authentic tricky up-do. Everyone remarked at how beautiful and charming The Rivoli Ballroom still looks after all these years with it's impressive crystal chandeliers and fully restored 1930s interior. With Minimalism being a big fashion buzzword right now its the perfect night off from clean lines and neutral palletes, giving an opportunity to bust out the beautiful, fantastic garments and accessories you've always dreamed of wearing but had no time or place to show them off. See you at the next event people!
Pictures: Top- Nell with boyfriend and tattoo supremo Johnny DeMonique and friend.
Middle left- The Gorgeous Nell compering the pageant
Middle right-A Peachy Anoushka from The Beehive, vintage clothing boutique in Greenwich with glam friend in the booths.

Wednesday, 5 May 2010

The Grand Vintage Ball and Vintage Attire Pageant

Are you are looking for something completely different to amuse yourself this coming Saturday night? Are looking to save yourself from having to endure yet another weekend in front of the telly cringing at the array of shameless and talentless entertainers hoping to be the next big thing (for approximately, ooh lets say 5 minutes?). If you believe that you have more talent and charisma in your fluff-filled belly button than the whole congregation of this deluded crowd put together then perhaps you could be crowned the next Grand Vintage Attire Pageant Queen or King?
Set in the superbly glam and retro, Rivoli Ballroom in South East London its an evening that proves that London's Got alot of Vintage Talent. Dress up in your finest vintage threads with a chance to win the first prize rosette from a selection of catergories including, Best Dictators Wife, Fur Coat and No Knickers and The Margot Leadbetter Award For Lifetime Services To Synthetic Fabrics. As well as an old-fashioned pageant , a selection of DJs will be spinning tunes from the 1920s right up to the 1980s and sideshows include Jonny Demonique's Infamous Tattoo Shack and Miss Amy Gwatkins legendary photo booth. If you think you've got what it takes to be Brockley's next big thing or you just fancy coming to watch, cheer, jeer and dance the night away, then this is definately one to head down to.
Tickets cost £14.99 and are available from
Where: Rivoli Ballroom, Brockley, London SE4 2BY
On this Saturday 8th May 2010 from 8pm to 1am .
Pictures: Top left- Event collage flyer
Bottom Right- Mrs Mussolini, the current title holder of the Best Dictator's Wife category from last September's event

Saturday, 1 May 2010

Gore Vidal

Style is knowing who you are, what you want to say and not giving a damn.