Monday, 27 September 2010

today i'm pondering... fashion week wear

So I've been rambling on for a few posts now about how much I love to ogle the style choices of the fashion elite as they turn up to the fashion weeks and desperately try to negotiate the cobbled streets in their five-inch heels. But the best part about this is picking up a few handy tricks about how to appear sufficiently of-the-season without looking like you've tried too hard. After all, you don't need to actually be going anywhere near the shows to want to look the part. And as Paris fashion week, the last of the four, and arguably the most stylish, starts tomorrow, there's no better time to make like a French fashion editor and get your gladrags on.

First up, who better to provide us with some fashinspiration for Paris fashion week than the impossibly chic Julia Restoin-Roitfeld, daughter of French Vogue editor Carine Roitfeld, and owner of a seriously enviable sense of style? She perfectly sums up the "I-look-like-I-haven't-tried-at-all-but-actually-spent-three-hours-getting-ready" aesthetic of the Parisian style set. What I love about her style is its perfect mix of polished and casual, lending an certain je ne sais quoi to all her looks. This lady can seriously rock a minidress and is often seen in one, but by teaming it with scruffy hair, a casual jacket and timeless accessories, she never looks overdressed. After all, there's nothing I hate more than less-than-stylish celebrities turning up to fashion shows looking like they're off to a nightclub (apart from perhaps trainers on the front row. I mean, seriously?!)

Anyway, the above picture perfectly illustrates Julia's signature style, and though she was actually attending a party here, I think her formula of sexy ruched dress teamed with fierce heels, an army jacket and bed-head hair is perfect for the front row. Create your own Restoin-Roitfeld-inspired ensemble by teaming Topshop's Glitter Knot Bandeau Dress, £50, with Asos' Reclaimed Dutch Army Shirt, £28. Add a bit of uptown polish with some classic Chanel-esque arm candy via Asos' Quilted Lock Across Body Bag, just £15, and team with some ridiculously gorgeous Topshop Primrose Ruched Strap Heels, £95 (I'm sure the French would approve of spending more on the shoes than on the rest of the outfit). Now you just need to spritz on a little dry shampoo to rough up your hair and give it that lived-in quality that Julia works so well.

If, however, you are a less-is-more kind of a girl, and prefer to work a smart trouser than a minidress during the day, I've got an alternative fashion week muse in the form of a street style find. The above lady, Katie Bain, demonstrates perfectly the purist philosophy championed by the queens of PFW last season: Céline, Chloé and Stella McCartney. These three labels, all fronted by British female designers, celebrated clean lines, luxe colours and zero accessories for their AW'10 collections, and it's an aesthetic that has been leapt upon by the fashion community. It takes a brave lady to abandon accessories and jewellery in favour of keeping the focus solely on her tailoring, but the girl pictured above has pulled it off with aplomb. Her buttoned-up shirt, barely-there make-up and Mulberry Alexa bag anchor her look firmly in this season without complicating it. To emulate her frow-worthy minimalism, you will need some good quality tailored high-waisters, such as Topshop's Pleated Wide Leg Trousers, £48, and either a crisp cotton shirt or a sumptuous silk one; personally I'd favour a silk option like Topshop's Silk Tab Placket Shirt in a very Chloé shade of camel, £40. Carry your fashion-week essentials in a slouchy bag like Miss Selfridge's Tan Satchel, £35, to stop the look becoming too severe, and work a natural make-up look of tinted moisturiser and a sweep of cream blusher.

If neither of these looks is floating your boat, then I've got a third option (don't say I don't spoil you). The above lady's style inspiration comes courtesy of Grazia's Style Hunter feature, which I'm a big fan of, not least because they often publish my comments in the magazine (in fact they did so for this very outfit). This lovely girl, whose name is Ravinder Kaur, effortlessly exhibits both the aviator trend and that for midi-length skirts, rendering her outfit perfect fashion week fare. Topshop's ridiculously popular Aaliyah boots are contrasted with a long pleated skirt in a flattering sea-green shade for the perfect soft-hard contradiction, and her jacket (not a reeeeal sheepskin aviator like mine, but we'll let that slide) is the cherry on top of a trend-tastic look. I especially love the skirt here, not least because I've just chopped up an old dress of mine into a remarkably similar, albeit black, one, but also because pleated skirts have so far been all over the SS'11 shows, making this a trend with longevity. Topshop will soon have a remarkably similar version of Ravinder's skirt for £42, but as it hasn't dropped yet, for now make do with Zara's Midi Skirt With Belt in black, £29.99 (I'd get rid of the belt, though, if I were you). It is worth holding out for the Topshop one, though, because it's a beaut. Team your lovely midi with some fierce heeled hiking shoes like Asos' Ace Leather Brogue Cleat Sole Boots, £100, to keep it firmly out of granny territory. Top with a sheepskin-collared leather bomber like Asos' Leather Aviator Jacket With Detachable Faux Fur Collar, £120, which is a great option for the trend-shy, who can just remove the collar come spring. This look works best with a glossy blow-dry, as demonstrated by the lovely Ravinder, so is a good option for those who don't fancy emulating Julia's slept-in hairdo.

So there we have it. Three front row-worthy styles. Off you pop to Paris then. Or at least off to the shops to stock up on some Gallic goodies... bon appétit!


Picture of Julia Restoin-Roitfeld: Elleuk.com
Picture of Katie Bain:
Elleuk.com
Picture of Ravinder Kaur: Graziadaily.co.uk

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Thursday, 23 September 2010

today i love... front row style spotting

One of my favourite things about fashion week season, as you may already have gathered, is waiting to see who will turn up to the shows and - more importantly - what they are wearing. But of course it's not just celebrities making up the fashionably attired audience; the toast of the fashion world also rocks up looking fabulous. And you can always rely on those working in fashion to make impeccable sartorial choices and produce some brilliant style inspiration for the rest of us.

How fortunate, then, that thanks to the internet, it's never been easier for us to ogle all the front row looks, regardless of their wearers' fame, or lack thereof. This season has been particularly forthcoming on this front, with more live streams than ever before allowing us to watch the fashion elite flocking into the shows as and when they happen. There are also thousands of street style blogs dedicated to showcasing the best dressed of the attendees. But if you're bored of trawling through hundreds of hit-and-miss pictures, why not check out my top three sites to get the inside knowledge without it resulting in a sore mouse finger.

First up, it's
ELLE's catwalk blog, dedicated to showcasing the outfits the staff of this lovely magazine were parading around London Fashion Week. As you'll know if you're a regular reader of this blog (yes it's a long shot, but if you're out there, cheers!) I dedicated a previous post to ELLE's What Elle Wears To Work blog, a simple but genius idea giving us fashion voyeurs a sneaky peek into its employees' wardrobes. The catwalk blog is an extension of this concept, but of course the stakes are raised and the outfits are extra-fabulous, so it makes for a lovely gallery of fashinspiration. And as if that wasn't enough, ELLE have also produced a rather fabulous video of all the best front row looks from LFW. Magic.

Next we have
Vogue.co.uk's catwalk reports. Elleuk.com and vogue.co.uk have been my regular ports of call for getting the lowdown on all the shows from the fashion weeks; it's often interesting to read the two different reports to get varying points of view. Both sites offer a 'front row' tab on many of their catwalk reports, but whereas ELLE's will only have a couple of snaps of the famous faces (good if you want to get straight to seeing whether Olivia Palermo was there), Vogue's offer a comprehensive gallery of the entire front row, often numbering forty or fifty pictures. Granted, not many of these will be copy&paste-worthy, but occasionally there's the odd gem of an outfit from an unknown fashion editor or model that makes it worth checking out the slideshow (no endless clicking needed!)

And finally a site that merits a visit for many a reason:
Topshop's Inside-Out blog. This lovely blog is a haven of fashion knowledge, from pics of the high street mecca's staff modelling its latest drops, to insider info on up-and-coming bands and exciting events, and even full catwalk reports. And recently it's enlisted the services of fashion photographer Tommy Ton to shoot the best street style that the fashion weeks have to offer. Check it out for some lovely stylish snaps and be sure to return regularly for near-daily doses of style.

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Wednesday, 22 September 2010

today i love... the best of lfw

So, it's all over for Blighty's bi-annual dose of catwalk shows, and I for one am a wee bit sad about that. But these few precious days have certainly been packed full of the very best of what London's fashion scene has to offer, and they have not disappointed in the least. Thanks to Topshop I even managed to stream my first ever live shows, starting with Topshop Unique (below) on Saturday. I can't tell you how exciting it was waiting for the show to start, knowing that I'd be seeing the clothes at the exact same time as all the fashion editors. And it was certainly a standout collection.

Taking as their influence "all things magical", Topshop's in-house design team produced an ethereal, somewhat 70s-inspired collection, all huge crimped hair and a palette of rust red, ochre and grey. Some outfits I didn't warm to especially, such as huge mustard flares teamed with cropped tops, cavegirl-esque swimsuits worn with heavy boots, and tie-dye hippie kaftans. Others, however, were beautiful. My favourite piece (above) was a mid-length dress in a yellow and black smudged print, with several slits up the leg and made from the lightest chiffon (which was available to order straight after the show... if only I had a spare £300!) Other pieces, like a metallic blue cutaway dress, hit just the right note seasonally, and towards the end of the collection a few pieces in crushed peach silk really caught my eye. Overall it was not an immediately wearable collection, but certainly one with real beauty and imagination, and one which, when distilled slightly with a few classic pieces of tailoring, could form the basis of an eye-catchingly lovely outfit come spring.

Another show that I watched live thanks to Topshop was Peter Pilotto (above). I got up at 9am for this one so I'm very relieved to say it didn't disappoint. In fact, it exceeded my expectations in terms of wearability and beauty. Gorgeous full-length draped gowns in shades of cornflower blue, deep navy, dusty yellow and pure white made their way elegantly down the catwalk. You could tell just from looking that the tailoring was expertly done; all the pieces just sat so beautifully on the body. The design duo also make clever use of a varied colour palette, knowing exactly which colours to combine and in which way for a stunning and wearable result.

There were many other beautiful shows... Emilio de la Morena (above) was a highlight, and produced a stellar front row turnout (Olivia Palermo, Julia Restoin-Roitfeld and Leighton Meester, to name but a few). The man certainly knows how to make a beautiful minidress, and his amazing creations came in sculpted cream organza, cutout black leather with chiffon overlay, and beautifully cut tulip shapes in sunshine yellow, coral and duck-egg blue. I also loved Charles Anastase's geek chic models with their round glasses and scruffy fringed wigs, and the soft chiffon dresses in white, black and violet were wearable and supremely elegant. Christopher Kane's reputation as London's wonderboy certainly drew in the crowds, and he displayed his continuing knack for subverting traditional fabrics and styles by producing a "Royals in neon" vibe, all acid green and pink twinsets in laser-cut leather. A little too out-there for my tastes, I must confess, and I couldn't help thinking it might all have looked a little nicer in creams and navys... Mark Fast was another show I watched live, and thoroughly enjoyed. While he didn't break any new ground, in that it was still all bodycon knitted dresses, he certainly proved that he sure can make a good bodycon knitted dress (and if it ain't broke, don't fix it, eh?). What I loved most about this show was actually the hair and make-up: gorgeous backcombed bouffants teamed with super-sexy glittery eyes provided the perfect after-dark beauty look to emulate. Erdem was, as ever, an LFW highlight. He printed faded floral motifs onto the airiest of chiffon dresses and made lace minidresses classier than they have ever been before.

But, of course, there was no show that could compete with the grand dame of London Fashion Week: Burberry Prorsum (above). Christopher Bailey's line has been my absolute undisputed favourite collection of the past two seasons, so needless to say I was waiting with bated breath to see what he would produce next. After frantically trying to stream his show live last season while at work and being thwarted by the restricted internet, this season I had no such qualms (thank you, unemployment) and delightedly settled down to watch it in all its real-time glory. And what a show it was. It was roughly divisible into three sections, helpfully separated by a change in soundtrack. The first was a take on that ever-classic Burberry stalwart: the trench. The new incarnations of this perennial favourite came paired with quilted leather leggings, patent belts in bright shades of aquamarine and acid yellow; some boasted black leather sleeves and panels, or were edged in leather piping. Teaming them with clashing bright clutches, or belting them over vibrant minidresses, kept the looks fresh and inspired. The second section moved away from the trench and into biker jacket territory, where the focus would remain for the rest of the show. Classic, timeless black leather cropped jackets and gilets were slung over ruched chiffon minidresses in ice-cream shades of powder blue, salmon pink, navy and champagne. Flashes of silver came via leggings and high-shine jackets. Another change of soundtrack and we moved into a fiercer take on the biker, arms and bodies embossed with hundreds of silver and gold studs. Animal prints took centre stage, with leopard minidresses in khaki and cobalt blue providing the perfect contrast to the jackets they sat beneath, and the occasional high-octane snakeskin jacket. All in all, it was an impressive, confident and supremely modern collection. Bailey has taken us away from all the white floaty dresses that so many other designers have fallen back on and chosen a fierce new direction - a direction that will no doubt be welcomed by his legions of loyal fans. And - apart from the final model tumbling over in the most cringeworthy piece of viewing I've seen in some time - it was a thoroughly exhilirating spectacle. Thank you, Christopher. Already excited for next season...

So that's LFW, as seen by me. Where front rows were concerned, there weren't quite as many good sightings as in New York (but then, there weren't as many days). My reliable favourites Chung and Palermo made commendable appearances, but the Burberry show wasn't quite as good FROW-wise as last season (no Mary-Kate, sadly) and Palermo wasn't quite as on form as in New York. Luckily though, two British redheads stood out to me in their sartorial efforts (quite apart from the fact that flame-coloured hair is so now). Nicola Roberts of Girls Aloud fame (above) looked adorable in Topshop Unique at, duh, Topshop Unique, while Karen Gillan, my style crush of several months and Doctor Who actress, showed up at Mulberry in a lovely white silk shirt, black sequinned Mulberry miniskirt and legs for miles. Kudos to these British girls for showing those Yanks how it's done...

Right then, I'm off to see what's going on in Milan so far... ciao!


Pictures of Topshop Unique, Peter Pilotto, Emilio de la Morena and Burberry Prorsum: Elleuk.com

Picture of Nicola Roberts:
Glamourmagazine.co.uk

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Sunday, 19 September 2010

today i'm wearing...

Top: Topshop

Silk shorts: Asos

Cardigan: Topshop

Tights: M&S

Bag: Topshop

Brogues: Topshop

Necklace: Topshop

Ring: Topshop
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Saturday, 18 September 2010

today i love... london fashion week

Goodbye NY, hello LON! Yes that's right, it's one of the two most exciting weeks of the year for us Brits (okay, for us fashion-obsessed Brits). The time has come for the entire glitterati to touch down in Heathrow and cast their beady eyes over the best of British design talent. And what an amazing few days it is bound to be.

London is always my favourite of the fashion weeks, and not just because it instils a certain patriotism in me. No, it's because the London designers exude a very specific brand of laid-back, individual downtown chic which you won't find in the over-glamorous Italian shows, the preppy American designs or the aloof charm of the Parisian défilés. And most of all, it is because London fashion week is home to the best of the best, the most superior show of them all, the most ridiculously lustworthy display of clothes.... I'm talking, of course, about Burberry Prorsum.

Christopher Bailey is, quite simply, a genius, and for the last two seasons his show has been without a shadow of a doubt my absolute favourite of all. Especially last season's ridiculously gorgeous military/aviator/cadet girl chic - I literally wanted to own every single piece as soon as I saw them and my obsession with that collection has not since waned. Bailey is also one of the few designers to stream his show live for us peasants who don't actually have tickets, making it all the more exciting.

Talking of live streaming, this week Topshop have done something to make me love them even more (was that possible? Not sure). They've set up a mini-site dedicated purely to streaming their own Topshop Unique show, plus several others that they sponsor, live. They will also be recording daily round-ups of all the action. A-mazing. The Unique show streams in a mere three hours from now. Could I be more excited?!

So here's my list of all the shows and times that I'm most looking forward to, and which ones will be available to stream. So don your aviator jacket, maxi skirt and vampy lipstick and get ready to be inspired...


PPQ: Friday 17th Sept, 8pm

Twenty8Twelve: Saturday 18th Sept, 11am

Topshop Unique: Saturday 18th Sept, 2.15pm (stream live via Topshop)

Charles Anastase: Saturday 18th Sept, 7pm

Mary Katrantzou: Sunday 19th Sept, 10am (stream live via Topshop)

Michael Van Der Ham: Sunday 19th Sept, 2.45pm (stream live via Topshop)

Vivienne Westwood: Sunday 19th Sept, 5.30pm

Richard Nicoll: Sunday 19th Sept, 7.30pm (stream live via Topshop)

Peter Pilotto: Monday 20th Sept, 9am (stream live via Topshop)

Mark Fast: Monday 20th Sept, 12.30pm

Erdem: Monday 20th Sept, 1.30pm

Christopher Kane: Monday 20th Sept, 3.30pm

Meadham Kirchhoff: Monday 20th Sept, 6.30pm (stream live via Topshop)

Jonathan Saunders: Tuesday 21st Sept, 12.30pm

Fashion East: Tuesday 21st Sept, 1.45pm (stream live via Topshop)

Burberry Prorsum: Tuesday 21st Sept, 4pm (stream live via Burberry.com)

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today i'm wearing...

Shirt: Miss Selfridge

Leather jacket: Topshop

Belt: tie from Asos playsuit

Bag: Topshop

Brogues: Topshop

Tights: Marks & Spencer

Bangle: Accessorize

Necklace: Topshop

Snake ring (left hand): Asos

Flower ring (right hand): Topshop

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Friday, 17 September 2010

today i love... the best of nyfw

So the fashion world has now flown first-class out of New York and set its LV luggage down in London town (a post on LFW to come). It's been a fabulous week for fashion fans; I have literally spent about 12 hours a day drooling at the lustworthy outfits making their way down the catwalks and those sitting on the front rows. It's been a tough challenge but I've edited all that fashion fabulousness down to my highlights of the week for your perusal pleasure...

My favourite show of all? A tricky one to be sure, but if pressed I'd probably plump for Mulberry, above (yep, a British label!). It was just all incredibly wearable but also with a hint of It-girl edginess. Ladylike belted jackets and skirts still looked young and fresh when done in a chic, neutral colour palette and fluid textures. All the models sported identical shaggy fringed redhead wigs, showing that the allure of beautiful flame-haired girls such as Karen Gillan and model-of-the-moment Julia Johansen (who was the hair inspiration for the wigs) is yet to fade, and these somehow hippy-esque wigs perfectly tempered any outfit that might otherwise have been verging on too ladylike. Mainly though, I loved the fact that you really could take any of the outfits and wear them straight off the catwalk. I'm all for designers experimenting, but ultimately we want to be able to wear the clothes, don't we? Mulberry was also a winner in my book for its absolutely stellar front row, the cream of the crop. Both of my two favourite frow-ers, Alexa Chung and Olivia Palermo, were there, and both sported not one but two delectable ensembles (one each to the show and the after-party. Oh to be a celebrity...) The lovely Gemma Arterton also put in an appearance. The best outfit of the bunch was, in my opinion, that which Miss Chung wore to the show itself (below). She showed us exactly how to do the midi-length without looking frumpy: team with tousled hair, some seriously enviable bag-candy, and a bright lip. Done.

Another highlight was the label that is patron saint of the New York cool-girl, Proenza Schouler (below). Apart from being one of the few design houses captained by two delectable-looking young men (sadly they probably bat for the other team), Proenza Schouler never fails to deliver a brand of effortless American chic beloved by such inimitably cool girls as Chloe Sevigny and the Olsen twins. This collection was even more gorgeous and wearable than its predecessors, and will surely be making an appearance on many a celebrity's form within weeks. Highlights included dressed-down skirt suits in loose, slouchy fabrics, the juxtaposition of corals, greys and nudes, a very chic take on tie-dye and mid-length, loosely cut semi-sheer dresses in shades of summer brights that had the potential to convert even a colour-phobe like me. All in all, an effortless, wearable masterpiece of a collection. Front row highlights were Elisa Sednaoui (Karl Lagerfeld's muse and model of the moment) and Leigh Lezark (erm... Karl Lagerfeld's muse and model of the moment...)

Now for a show that I haven't actually seen all of, but must give a special mention to. Whitney Eve is the label belonging to reality star Whitney Port, and if you are as a big a fan of The City as I am (actually, not possible: I love it to bits), you will know that she is an absolute sweetheart and will probably, like me, want her to be your friend. Anyway after having been underwhelmed by her AW'10 collection (too much gold, lurex and velvet), I am seriously impressed with what I've seen of her SS'11 presentation, which she debuted on Saturday. So far I've only seen behind-the-scenes snaps on her blog, but if the gorgeous khaki jumpsuit the designer herself wore to the presentation (below) is anything to go by, I am going to love it all.

There are many many more shows I would love to mention... Richard Chai really impressed me with his gorgeous neutral colour palette and clever experimentation with sheer textures. Alexander Wang's collection failed to instil much love in me at first sight (not feeling the grungy hair and piercings thing), but it definitely had some standout pieces and I'm sure when SS'11 comes around, so will I. Preen was, as ever, simply lovely: beautifully cut dresses in crisp tennis whites interspersed with sheer blacks and blues. Again, just really wearable. At Calvin Klein, Francisco Costa stuck to what he does best - simple, beautiful architectural tailoring - and it will surely pay off with his many fans. 3.1 Phillip Lim also lived up to my expectations as a NYFW highlight (and no doubt devotee Alexa Chung, who looked lovely in the front row, was also impressed). Lim referenced a slightly preppy theme with shirts buttoned under jumpers, cutesy shift dresses and elegant tailored separates, in a palette of sky blues, camel, cream and grey.

One designer who really does deserve a mention is Derek Lam (above), mainly because, although he was certainly on my radar, he wasn't one of my all-time top NYFW tickets - until now. I absolutely adored his collection, which pretty much encapsulated all the clothes you will need come summer: beautiful separates in chambray blue, floaty white semi-sheer dresses, classic sleeveless trench coats, a cute playsuit in a subtle grey print, and finally long, flowing, elegant maxidresses in a palette of crisp white, pearl grey and cornflower blue ikat prints. Very impressive indeed. His subtle use of colours and prints which complement the cleaner block colour looks is exactly what made his collection stand out; as opposed to the collections of Diane Von Furstenberg and Marc Jacobs, whose brash, bold, clashing colours and prints really didn't appeal to me.

Finally it only remains for me to thank the ridiculously stylish Olivia Palermo, whose frequent front row appearances filled me with much fashiony delight: she debuted no less than seven impeccable outfits this week (my favourite above), as well as a new shorter hairstyle, which I actually, somewhat surprisingly, am a fan of (generally the longer the better with hair, I think).

Anyway I think that sums up my personal highlights of NYFW. Now, I'm off to prepare myself for many more hours of gazing at gorgeous clothes at LFW. Ah, it's a hard life...


Pictures of Mulberry, Proenza Schouler, Derek Lam and Alexa Chung: Elleuk.com

Picture of Whitney Port:
Celebrity-gallery.net

Picture of Olivia Palermo:
Graziadaily.co.uk

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Tuesday, 14 September 2010

today i'm wearing...


Maxidress: Topshop

Cardigan: Kate Moss for Topshop

Belt: Topshop

Shoes: Accessorize

Bag: Topshop

Necklace: Topshop

Snake ring (left hand): Asos

Butterfly ring (right hand): Gogo Philip at Topshop
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Saturday, 11 September 2010

today i'm channelling... olivia palermo

So you know how I said in my last post that gawping at celebrities' front row outfits was possibly my favourite part of the fashion weeks? And that I was especially looking forward to seeing which shows Olivia Palermo would show her fabulous face at? Well, my fashion prayers have been answered. I've only checked out six or so shows so far but Miss Palermo has rocked up to two of them - Peter Som and Ports 1961, since you ask. (By the way, already noticing a lot of draping, fluid lines, sheer textures and white from the shows I've seen so far).

Anyway, true to form, Olivia gave us a lesson in how to look spectacular on the front row, so I thought it only fitting to dedicate a post to emulating her polished style, given that it so perfectly sums up the New York aesthetic.

Olivia is, like me, someone who seems much more comfortable in winter than in summer attire, and her trademark gold jewellery and flawless blowdry somehow seem to fit much better with smart trousers and jackets than shorts and tees. So I'm sure she shares my joy in being able to slip into a more wintry range of clothes and colours now that it's September. And if this outfit is anything to go by, she certainly shares my love of khaki. What I love about this look (worn to Peter Som's show) is Olivia's expert pairing of a dash of military grunge - by way of the biker skinny trousers, lace-up boots and casual zip-detail jacket - with some seriously high-end touches like her elegant necklace, luxe tote bag and of course her trademark red nails, gold watch and cocktail ring. She thereby achieves an outfit that neither looks too grungey (take note Agyness Deyn) nor too Upper East Side, but sits somewhere fashionably in the middle.

So how to perfect your own brand of Palermo-inspired chic? First up squeeze into Topshop's Biker Skinny Trousers, which are très Houlihan-esque and not at all bad for £38. Team with Topshop's Roll Sleeve Burnout Tee, £16, for an extra dose of grunge, and then sling on Marks and Spencer's Autograph Chain & Piping Jacket with Wool, £69. Now for the polished accessories to elevate your look into seriously covetable territory. First the Palermo must-have, a gold mannish watch; hers is a Rolex and presumably cost thousands of dollars, but fear not, you can grab your own for a mere £16 in Urban Outfitters' Gold Face Stretch Watch. You can also copycat Olivia's delightful chain-link bracelet with Asos' remarkably similar Wide Links Bracelet with Magnetic Clasp, £10. Then you just need a whopping great cocktail ring such as Topshop's Leaves Covered Stone Ring, £12.50, and a statement necklace like Asos' Vintage Style Short Occasion Necklace, £20.

Finally it only remains for you to put all your fashion week essentials - I'm thinking notepad for jotting down your favourite looks, lipstick for emergency top-ups, and smart phone for tweeting and snapping the street style on offer - into a stylish tote like Miss Selfridge's Black Crocodile Padlock Bag, £35 and lace up some fabulous heeled hiking boots; Asos' ACE Leather Brogue Cleat Sole Boots, £100, should do the trick. Et voilà! A sleek New York look to take you to any of the shows. Or just something fabulous to wear while you watch them online, at least...


Picture of Olivia Palermo:
Celebrity-gossip.net

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Friday, 10 September 2010

today i'm wearing...

Blouse: Topshop

Cami (underneath): Topshop

Jeans: Topshop

Bag: Topshop

Belt: Topshop

Snake ring (left hand): Asos

Flower ring (right hand): Topshop

Necklace: Topshop

Brogues: Topshop

Glasses: Calvin Klein


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Thursday, 9 September 2010

today i love... new york fashion week

Ooooo it's an exciting time of year! September is probably one of my favourite months. Summer is over (not a fan of sweating), the nights are drawing in and soon we'll be surrounded by lovely autumn leaves. And hopefully with the temperature dropping I'll soon be able to wear my aviator jacket! (It is literally the clothing equivalent of standing in an oven). It's also the start of the new TV year and I am beyond excited about ALL my favourite programmes starting again in the next few days (Merlin, Gossip Girl, The Inbetweeners and QI, to name but a few!) But the most fabulous thing about September is, of course, the fashion weeks.

New York Fashion Week kicked off officially on Wednesday, but the big hitters don't start showing until tomorrow. Then after a week of American fashiontasticalness (yes that's now a word), the action moves onto our fair capital of London, and then onto Milan, and finally Paris. A whole four weeks of amezzing shows! I can barely contain my excitement. Just as I did last season, I'll be logging onto
ELLEuk.com regularly for full show reports, pics of every catwalk look, and (probably my favourite bit) snaps of the front row guests (particularly excited to see which shows Misses Palermo and Chung show up to, and what they'll be wearing. Eek.)

So here, for your perusal pleasure, are the show dates and times of the presentations that I shall most be looking forward to in New York (fear not, I'll be doing the same for the other FWs also). And don't be put off by the fact that you won't actually be there... just log onto
firstcomesfashion.com to stream many of the shows live.


Jason Wu: Friday 10th Sept, 2pm (7pm UK time)

Prabal Gurung: Saturday 11th Sept, 1pm (6pm UK time)

Alexander Wang: Saturday 11th Sept, 5pm (10pm UK time)

Diane Von Furstenberg: Sunday 12th Sept, 4pm (9pm UK time)

Thakoon: Sunday 12th Sept, 6pm (11pm UK time)

Marc Jacobs: Monday 13th Sept, 8pm (1am Tuesday UK time)

Rodarte: Tuesday 14th Sept, 12noon (5pm UK time)

The Row: Tuesday 14th Sept, 5pm (10pm UK time)

3.1 Phillip Lim: Wednesday 15th Sept, 2pm (7pm UK time)

Proenza Schouler: Wednesday 15th Sept, 8pm (1am Thurs UK time)

Calvin Klein: Thursday 16th Sept, 3pm (8pm UK time)


Look out for full reports of my very favourites.... I'm having fashion palpitations just thinking about it!

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Monday, 6 September 2010

today i'm wearing...

Top: Topshop

Silk shorts: Asos

Jacket: Topshop

Bag: Topshop

Bangle: Accessorize

Flower ring: Topshop

Necklace: Topshop

Belt: Primark

Shoes: Topshop

Glasses: Calvin Klein


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today i love... lisaeldridge.com

I first discovered the lovely Lisa Eldridge, make-up artist extraordinaire, when I was given a free DVD entitled 'Get Gorgeous' from Boots. Said DVD was packed full of useful, easy-to-follow video tutorials explaining how to do day make-up, night make-up, perfect eyes, perfect lips, and much more. I was amazed at how, unlike so many other video tutorials, it really was easy to recreate the looks yourself. And there was something I loved about Lisa straightaway. Maybe it's her Nigella Lawson-esque combo of posh voice and gorgeous face that makes her so telegenic, but her tutorials are easy to understand without being condescending, and since discovering her website I've been hooked.

Lisaeldridge.com has a whole wealth of (completely free!) unmissable make-up know-how, in the form of numerous useful videos on such subjects as smokey eyes, the basics of foundation and concealer, and the perfect way to apply lipstick, as well as regular reviews of new beauty lines, giveaways from Boots' No. 7 range, of which she is creative director, and lists of her favourite products, ranges and brushes.

Personally, my favourite vidoes are the smokey eye (very professional looking) and the basics tutorials, covering exactly how to do primer, foundation and concealer in three separate vids; after all, so many people get their bases wrong and without perfecting your face, no amount of brilliantly applied eyeshadow or lipstick can make you look good. I also find it invaluable to get product recommendations from an industry professional who has really put them through their paces.

Check out the website and I promise you'll be captivated. And here's a little tip to get you started... when putting on lipstick, to avoid leaving marks on your wine glass, simply apply one coat, blot, apply another, blot, then apply a third... it's as easy as one, two, three!

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Friday, 3 September 2010

today i'm wearing...


Playsuit: Asos

Leather jacket: Topshop

Shoes: Topshop

Bag: Topshop

Bangle: Accessorize

Ring: Topshop

Necklace: can't remember!
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