Wednesday, 13 June 2012

H&M Embraces the Avant-garde!

This winter H&M will be showcasing an influx of avant-garde, deconstructed and individual designs, brought to the public through an unforeseen collaboration with the mysterious fashion house Maison Martin Margiela.

The ultra-discreet 'maison', founded in 1988 by its retiring namesake (the Dutch designer is never photographed or appears after his fashion shows), will undoubtedly bring its own brand of conceptual design to the mainstream high street shop. Martin Margiela has never been known to conform to the sartorial- norm,   creating his clothes through deconstruction, allowing the creative process to visible upon the garments and playing with unusual proportions. Indeed, dresses in the house's S/S '12 collection were made from the re-creation of their pattern pieces, either in a multitude of sequins or through being encased in plastic.  

However, what is most intriguing is how these stimuli will be interpreted on a cheaper, mass-produced level; I await the collection, due to drop on November 15th, with baited breath!

Images all from
Maison Martin Margiela S/S '12
Maison Martin Margiela A/W '12
Maison Martin Margiela Men's A/W '12

So will there be a continuation of the deconstructed, hard/soft juxtaposition of silk, chiffon, leather and plastic seen in the S/S '12 collection? Or the masculine tailoring, leather inserts and muted colours of the winter examples? One thing's for sure, I think we'll be seeing plenty of funnel necks:

Thursday, 7 June 2012

Gold In The Air Of Summer

Just a quick post to show you my Cleopatra impersonation at my student hall's summer ball. I wish I had smiled properly, I look like I'm trying not to laugh at something behind the camera- the girl wearing the same dress as me perhaps? (A complete and utter NIGHTMARE, I had to be refrained from 'accidentally' spilling a glass of red wine down her front. I'm not quite sure why girls get so angry about this sort of thing, but judging by the angry glares passing between us the entire evening, we certainly did. By the way, she was wearing the completely wrong shoes and bag to go with the dress...) I'm wearing a TFNC dress, which can be found here, and thrifted wedges and jewellery.

Hair inspired by this little youtube video here:

She is so sweet! And the hair style is super easy, even by my poor standards.

Photo courtesy of my friend Charley (also in the photo), whose blog can be found here:

Tuesday, 5 June 2012

Eco Fashion Ahoy!

A recent article that I wrote on the end of 'fast' high street fashion, for Birmingham's AREA Culture Guide (p.60), has got me pondering the alternatives to the cheap, mass produced clothes offered by shops such as H&M and Primark.

Although I am fully aware of the social and moral implications inherent to shopping in stores such as these, I'm afraid that a third implication, that of economics, is usually the deciding factor when it comes to my shopping habits.

As a poverty stricken student I can barely afford Topshop, let alone well known eco-friendly labels such as Noir and Stella McCartney. However, I recognise that there's a very definite gap in consumer knowledge of affordable 'green' fashion; that's why I decided to bring together some of the best, most diverse and reasonably priced environmentally- friendly brands, right here on my blog.

I hope you are inspired by all them to change your shopping habits even a little bit- it could make all the difference.

'Bureh' dress, £50.00

An ethical label which works with tailors local Sierra Leone, and uses a combination of traditional West African prints and modern, stylish designs. Nearfar aims to provide a sustainable and ethical living for disadvantaged young adults living in the country's capital city, Freetown.

High-waisted Shorts, £35.00

Dress, £60

Slightly more expensive than Nearfar, People Tree boast an eco- perfect retail history. The online store, which has collaborated with the likes of Thakoon and Emma Watson to create previous collections, aims to use only organic and Fairtrade cotton, natural dyes, and recycled products. Furthermore, they are part of a  Fairtrade network which covers twenty developing countries. This season, People Tree are channeling the 50's housewife trend in gingham and hourglass-hugging wrap dresses.

Knit jumper, £85

Maxi skirt, £69

An ethical line which reminds me of the simple, cosy designs of Toast, Bibico uses only natural materials to produce its garments. Furthermore, the clothes offered in their online store are only produced in fair trade cooperatives in the developing world. 

St Tropez Shorts, £39

Check out my recent article on the end of disposable fashion in the June edition of AREA Culture Guide. Page 60-61 everyone!

Friday, 1 June 2012

On the subject of weddings

Ok! magazine. Don't Tell The Bride. Countless chick flicks which all end in one big fat wedding (because that's all women should aspire to, right?)

This recent landslide of nuptial- filled images has created something far from the 'fairy tale' romance they feign to offer. Encouraged by the awkwardly posed and publicity- paid for celeb weddings, as well as the slew of bridal- inspired programmes that now dominate our television screens, it seems that all the world now wants a part in these tacky celebrations of matrimony. The vast sums of money, the hideous (-ly expensive) white polyester meringue, hired suits, brash flower displays... does it not all appear just a tiny bit vulgar?

I first thought up this article idea in reaction to an indescribably horrific wedding invitation that my parents received. On first glance I thought the invite, written as 'poetry' in rhyming couplets (to symbolise their everlasting love, perhaps?) was bad enough. However, as I read on, I realised that wasn't the worst of it. At the very bottom of the card, hidden among the florid font and bad poetry, was a request for cash as a wedding present. Or cheque, I don't think they minded much.The invitation was the catalyst for my developing views on current weddings. Gone is a celebration of love among your closest friends and family, and in are vulgar displays of faux romance, complete with a final bill running into the tens of thousands. I wasn't as much put out by the style of the aforementioned invitation, but the underlying message that this young family had obviously spent all their money on this wedding, and were now having to ask for cash from their guests, left a very sour taste in my mouth.

Weddings shouldn't be about ticking off a checklist of venue, dress, catering, suits, bridesmaids' dresses, hair and makeup etc etc etc. Do what you want, I say. Celebrate in a way that demonstrates you and your love for one another, not a carbon copy of Katy Price's last wedding in Hello magazine. Be creative. You don't have to wear a homogeneous white polyester meringue, with a sweetheart neckline and matching nylon dresses for your bridesmaids. First and foremost it's a fire hazard, and secondly it looks (to me) incredibly vulgar.

Instead, take inspiration from Kate Moss, who added her distinct personal flair to the occasion. Inspired by the Great Gatsby, Moss wanted her wedding to be 'soft-focused' and 'dreamy'; she completed the look with 30s style John Galliano couture dress. However, if your budget can't stretch that far, I suggest opting for an authentic vintage gown, the most stylish of which can be found at, which is recommended by Vogue. My favourite from their selection is this 1920s beaded dress, which has the most divine back I've ever seen.

If you're really limited financially, then for God's sake don't blow your entire savings on the supposed 'best day of your life' (I like to think there'd be a lot more great days in your life too, thanks). There are countless vintage boutiques and stalls popping up over the country where, if you hunt hard enough, treasures can be found. Even if it's just the fabric that you fall in love with, collaborate a sewing machine- savvy friend to create a gown entirely to your taste. Simply flower displays, which can be homemade, can complement hand made invitations and table decorations. Round up friends and family and ask them to help with small tasks, meaning that when the day comes your wedding will be a true communal experience, with every guest feeling  like they're part of something special.

Then just add copious amount of alcohol, a great playlist and a large dance floor, and have a day you'll never forget.

Images from: