Autumn/Winter 2014-15 Jason Wu

WE know Jason Wu can do flounce and fluster, but today he swapped his signature dressy-dressy way of dressing for something with a more androgynous approach.

Lines were lean and lengthy in luxe and serious shades of black, silver and petrol blue for sinuous gowns that twisted at the neck and waist – but not in an over-complicated manner – and silky tops that did the same, and which came worn with wide trousers.

For outerwear, the oversized parkas will make sure that even when wearing only one of those slinky dresses beneath, potential red carpet walkers will be warm. Meanwhile, T-bar shoes and mannish tailoring gave it an overall Forties slant. That’s one show down for Wu this week – as the new creative director of Hugo Boss, he’ll now be getting ready for his debut on Wednesday.

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Autumn/Winter 2014-15 Oscar de la Renta

PRINCESS-pretty and dream dresses come courtesy of one man in New York – and that’s Oscar de la Renta, the legend, the life, the man who doesn’t need to reinvent the wheel, simply send out swoon-worthy gowns on the likes of Karlie Kloss to make girls’ (especially brides-to-be) hearts beat that little bit faster.

But tonight he threw a sartorial spanner out into the crowd and started the collection with a more masculine-noir approach: pinstripe suiting in sombre shades and even leather, which made for a pair of wide-leg trousers, a skirt or two and a cape coat. There was even one fairly aggressive leather skirt suit complete with biker jacket, zips and lacing. But then he began to feed in that sense of sweet – fluted skirts, lace blouses, prim ensembles, prettier shades, florals and then of course a crescendo of ballgown creations to finish. Oscar nominees will have been paying close attention here.

R.I.P Oscar de la Renta

Oscar de la Renta, a designer for the Park Avenue set, Hollywood, and first ladies, died today at his home in Kent, Connecticut, after a long battle with cancer. He was 82. De la Renta, who was born and raised in the Dominican Republic, trained with Cristobal Balenciaga in Spain and worked with Antonio del Castillo at Lanvin before moving to New York to take a job with Elizabeth Arden. He was a big believer in ready-to-wear back when ready-to-wear was a novel concept and launched his own label in 1965. He has recently seen it grow into a $150 million business. In the last month, De la Renta dressed Amal Alamuddin for her Venice, Italy, nuptials to George Clooney and Michelle Obama for the Fashion Education Workshop she hosted in Washington, D.C. It was the first time Mrs. Obama wore a dress by the designer.

Last year De la Renta received the Founders Award from the Council of Fashion Designers of America. When asked him to interview another American designer to mark the occasion, De la Renta chose Alexander Wang, who was up for Designer of the Year and had recently been named the creative director at Balenciaga. We had lunch at a communal dining table in De la Renta’s 42nd Street atelier. Oscar served takeout Thai food, and burnished his reputation as a consummate gentleman, asking Wang questions about his youth and his new gig in Paris. But I will remember the conversation for how candid he was about his own experiences.

On Balenciaga: “I was picking pins up from the floor.” On how he landed the Lanvin gig: “I had never draped anything. But I said, ‘Of course I know how to drape.’ As I left Lanvin, I went to the telephone booth and I looked in the yellow pages and I found the biggest ad for a fashion school, and said, ‘I just accepted this job to work at Lanvin, so would you teach me in a month what you teach in a year? ’” On being in business for over 50 years: “I still have the same passion. In fact, perhaps I’m wrong, I think I’m a much better designer than I was 50 years ago because I’ve learned more. I have a much better sense of who my consumer is. Every single day is a learning process… Think of who my woman was then, and who she is now. When I first came to New York, a woman in a pair of pants would not be allowed into some restaurants here. Fashion keeps moving. You just have to keep aware of what’s going on.”

De la Renta’s Spring collection, shown in early September, was one of his loveliest that I can recall, set against a backdrop of soft pink flowers. As I said at the time, it was “feminine, unfailingly polished, and lush with color,” with one sensational evening dress after another. An absolutely fitting swan song. But perhaps Karlie Kloss, writing on Instagram that night, put it best: “There is no one on earth who makes a woman feel more beautiful than Oscar de la Renta.”

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My First Week

After feeling slightly overhwelmed I’ve somehow survived my first week in Paris.

After getting settled into my apartment I started at my school IFA Paris – International Fashion Academy.

As I entered the building I had absolutely no idea where I was meant to go or what I was meant to expect but when I eventually entered the correct room I was welcome but a whole group of friendly faces. Once the whole class had arrived we went round and each introduced ourselves. It’s was absolutely amazing, every single person was from a different country wth a completely different story and reason how they had eventually landed in this class to start a masters in Fashion and Business.

From what I can remember there was a girl from: France, Italy, Germany, Costa Rica, Thailand, Belgium, California, Argentina, India, South Africa, Brazil and Russia….

After all the introductions we got given our timetable wich look so interesting. With half our lecture in Fashion and the other half in Business there is a real mixture of what we will be learning. the Fashion of course sounds the most exciting to me with each lecture actually doing what they are teaching as their profession, for example – my lecture in Buying is given by a lady who is a buyer for Gallery Lafayette, the Selfridges of Paris!!

Although classes aren’t always all day they still are everyday some being in the morning some being in the afternoon, so far the classes are great fun and so much more relaxed than university although I feel that soon it will change and the real work will begin.

So at the end of my first week I am very happy, completely exhausted from making friends, exploring and constantly getting lost in Paris, not to mention attempting to speak French at any given moment.

I’m very happy, I think it’s going to be a great year!

For my first day at IFA I wore my new black patent loafers from John Lewis and got lots of compliments. Click below to shop more loafers that I would just absolutely love to have:




Spring/Summer 2015 Miu Miu

 UPON entering through the hallowed arches of Miu Miu’s show venue this afternoon, one couldn’t help but draw parallels to religion and the church. The church of Miu Miu? These were the sort of arches that felt makeshift, cut from wood and erected up with limited resource. It was the sort of church a cult might build. The cult of Miu Miu? Why not. This brand, perhaps more than any other, has legions of fans that worship at the altar.

This season felt like a greatest hits of Prada. It looked like a stroppy younger sister had spent an afternoon raiding her big sister’s bedroom, rummaging in her Prada wardrobe and pulling out all her favourites and remixing them with her own bits and pieces. The shiny satin pencil skirts, the glossy red leather, the silky bed coats that looked like they were made from an eiderdown (a beautiful one nonetheless), raw-edged plaid bra tops – in the heat of her fury, this younger sister probably took a pair of scissors to those pieces and started hacking away with glee.

The Baltimore-born director, John Waters was referenced. He began making films in the Sixties and he screened them in church halls (another reason for those sacred arches perhaps) to audiences who had heard about them word of mouth.

There will be nothing word of mouth about this collection. It was a scream it from the rooftops kind of a hit.

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