Tuesday, 28 September 2010

Perfect for Winter

Now that autumn has well and truly arrived, I guess it’s time that we embraced it for its cold, wet and dark ways. It’s not all doom and gloom though. Oh no, it’s at this time of year when you rediscover last season’s boots and notice how worn they look. That’s why I am loving the new vegan boots from Bourgeois Boheme.

If you’re a fan of the riding boot style then you’ll be a fan of their own-brand Venus boots. Whilst those looking to make a statement may brave the patent black, I’m a fan of the subtler brown pair. They’ve got a slight 1.5 inch heel and the simplistic design allows them to be worn with jeans and dresses alike.

Marco Tozzi’s Kelley boot in Mocca is another of my favourites. They are more casual than the Venus, with rubber soles suggesting they’ve been designed for practicality and durability during the winter months that will undoubtedly leave our toes trembling in the cold.

As for ankle high boots, BoBo’s very own Isis are hard to beat. The black patent colour shines through, with the folded detail at the top completing the look. Perfect for wear with tights, they can be matched with casual and formal outfits making them pretty hard to resist! There are many other lovely pairs on offer at www.bboheme.com so I suggest you take a look before the winter creeps up on us.

Catherine May

Wednesday, 22 September 2010


Estethica returned to LFW for its fourth year, having grown vastly in size, thirty seven exhibitors took to their stalls to showcase their Spring/Summer 2011 collections. New exhibitors deserving of a mention include Erin O’Connor’s joint venture with Kate Halfpenny, She Died of Beauty, for their simplistic t-shirts and bags with simple slogans.

Additionally, Lost Property of London founder Katy Bell impressed visitors with her unique collection of bags which have been rescued from lost items and tailored to create impressive designs – using offcuts from Liberty to produce spectacular pieces. In fact, there were so many more exhibitors worthy of a mention; hopefully these images will give you an idea of what went on besides the catwalk shows....

 The necklaces in the new fluid collection at Leblas flow to add intricate detail to your neckline. Made with recycled sterling silver and plated in 18 carat gold they’re definitely worth a small investment.

The Ethical Justice Foundation continues to make a statement with bold t-shirts with designer collaborations from the likes of Richard Nicoll and Jade Jagger. Their green ethics were matched with a similarly green stall with mannequins to match.

Upcycling is still the main focus of goodone. Whilst they may be busy with their recent Topshop launch, they’ve still found the time to create an original SS11 line including a jacket created from old tents left at festivals!

As well as providing her designs to the Prophetik catwalk show, Nina Dolcetti has produced a whole range of stunning shoes including favourites from last season in new colours. It was the heels that really shone for me, although that’s not to take anything away from a beautiful pair of nude flats with purple details which I loved.

Catherine May

Sunday, 19 September 2010

EcoLuxe and what luxury it was!

New this year is EcoLuxe, a ethical luxury fashion weekend to coincide with London Fashion Week, I headed on over to No 1 Aldwych hotel yesterday to see the new S/S 2011 collections and meet the amazing designers behind such lush brands!

Olga Olsson collection designed by Ruth Ferguson who manufactures her whole collection in Rio at an atelier whose code of conduct is based on The Ethical Initiative Code of Conduct. Highlights of the collection some new age prints and block basics, lusting in particular over a reversible bikini in cream and corral, true sun tanning basics!!

Anupa launching in the UK, gorgeous hand made bags from Vietnam.. also showcasing her new men's collection! Has own boutique in Vietnam and new website launching in October...

Gorgeous dress from stamo collection........... The colours on Elena's collection were to die for this little cape was a favourite and so to her dresses.... silk hand dyed and natural!!

Izzy Lane, what a fab range of mens knitwear in the £200 retail range they have just taken on fab London college of fashion designer and the pieces he has come up with are amazing! Great colours too!

Gorgeous lace dress from Tammam, my favourite in fact! The bustier is made from vintage lace as well as the under skirt, retailing at £2,500, best start saving now!

Can't wait for the next one!
Lupe Castro

Sustainable Catwalk Show at Clarence House

In the iconic setting of Clarence House, The Sustainable Show certainly drew in the crowds. As the fashion editors arrived, followed by the Mayor of London himself, Boris Johnson, I knew this was a show that was going to make an impact.

All of the designs from the Estethica exhibitors looked gorgeous, accompanied by garments from Stella McCartney, Vivienne Westwood and some stunning, colourful jackets from Christopher Raeburn. With all the clothes featured being ethical in their own way, the show certainly proved itself to be a great way to highlight the industry and hopefully raise awareness of what’s happening within the ethical sector.

Erin O’Connor took time out from her normal poses to entertain the crowd, particularly Boris, with her improvised dance routine. This went down well with the audience whose applause continued right up until the final display where all of the models came out wearing She Died of Beauty t-shirts.

Prophetik Spring/Summer 2011 Catwalk Show

LFW for me had to start off with the Prophetik Spring/Summer 2011 Catwalk Show, and what a catwalk show it was!
With a muse of Botticelli’s Venus, the Prophetik show of the ‘Midnight Garden’ collection took a more traditional look at fashion. Accompanying the show musically were both a classical ensemble and a bluegrass band adding atmosphere before the models took to the stage and continued as the designs were showcased.
Organic cottons were favoured by designer Jeff Garner; they could be found in both his menswear and womenswear alike. The former featured stunning pantaloons - reminiscent of Aladdin’s attire – that could possibly be deemed to have been designed with costume fashion in mind, which I heart!

For women, Prophetik have new ranges of both floor length and shorter dresses, whilst the floor length ball gowns wouldn't be an every day garment for me (if only), the light colours and tailoring of the tea dresses definitely caught my eager eye. Also a definite mention were the hooded tunics in several colours. All in all, it was an impressive return to LFW for the Tennessee designer, ending the show with his own folk jig down the catwalk to the heightened applause of the audience.
Catherine May

Thursday, 16 September 2010

Must see sustainable catwalk show

If you were excited by Estethica’s return to LFW this season, then you’ll be thrilled to know that there’s even more ethical fashion being showcased in the recently announced Sustainable Catwalk Show.

Held in Friary Court, St James’s Palace on Friday September 17th, some Eco brands exhibiting in Estethica will get the chance to see their designs on the catwalk along with S/S 2011 collections from the likes of Dame Vivienne Westwood and Stella McCartney. Orsola De Castro, curator of Estethica will also be showing pieces from her label From Somewhere, whilst People Tree are bound to impress with the popularity of their most recent collaboration with Emma Watson still firmly in people’s minds. It’s not just the big designers who will be making a name for this inaugural show, supermodel Erin O’Connor will be walking in the show and has praised the initiative saying she was ‘proud’ to be a part of it.
As this show is being run in conjunction with START’S ‘A Garden Party to Make a Difference’, there is likely to be an opportunity for visitors to A Garden Party to find themselves a place in the audience of the show on the day itself as limited places will be available. So if you’re already heading to St James Palace for this sustainable festival then I’d definitely spare a thought to this carbon neutral catwalk show.
Catherine May

Wednesday, 15 September 2010

Hetty Rose - SAMPLE SALE

YES shoe troopers, Hetty Rose has announced a sample sale on the 24th September, it's tie for you to get your hands on a pair of glamorous hand made shoes, up to 75% off!

There will be plenty of styles from the last three kimono collections in sizes UK 4-7, plus wonderfully opulent purses and cute baby shoes too. Get there early ladies, these shoes will be snapped up before you can say YES PLEASE!

WHEN: Friday 24th September (from 12pm -7pm)

WHERE: Craft Central Building, 33-35 St John’s Square, London, EC1M 4DS

WHY: Up to 75% off.... free fair-trade tea and coffee and yummy chocolates, need I say more?

Angela Clayton

Monday, 13 September 2010

The new A/W collection from Elena Gracia

I love the Japanese influence in the new A/W Elena Garcia’s Opium Collection. The Cutwork Kimono is made with a delectable organic silk satin and has been hand-dyed with metal free dyes to create a statement look. Similarly, the Angelina Cutwork Dress is made of the same satin with lots of detail around the neckline to capture the attention of those around you.

It’s not just the theme of the collection that has been well thought through – it’s the versatility of the clothes as well. The Angelina Cutwork Dress can just as stylishly be worn as an off-the-shoulder top as it can be as a halter neck dress. And the Cutwork Skirt/Dress can, as its name suggests, be worn with a top or on its own as a dress.

This is the genius behind the collection – when you’re trying to convince yourself that you really do need that new dress, you’ll undoubtedly realise you can as it’s not just one piece that you’re investing in. Contrasting this range of styles, the pieces each come in just two colours: deep aubergine and coral red. Whilst some may see this as an inhibiting factor, I feel that the colours both have a warming feel to them that you would definitely find yourself falling in love with one or the other. The collection will be available online soon.

Written by Catherine May

Friday, 10 September 2010

Seven Dials here I come!

TROUSERS LONDON in collaboration with SOCIAL SUICIDE present: FASHION WEEK – FASHION STRONG pop-up store/exhibition from 11th of September in the heart of Covent Garden – Seven Dials. Head on down to see the upcoming Trousers London range as well as selected pieces from MATTHEW WILLIAMSON SS11 men’s collection that includes four Special Edition by TROUSERS LONDON jeans. Oh YES, I did say MATTHEW WILLIAMSON!

WHEN: 11th-29th September

WHERE: 53 Monmouth street, Seven Dials, WC2H 9DG

WHY: Trousers London is the hottest Premium Mens denim brand

Thursday, 9 September 2010

Statement jewllery goes green!

I’m loving the statement jewellery from Johari this season. Each piece has been individually handmade so you are free to tell all your friends about your unique necklace.

As for my favourite piece? The Miale necklace takes the shape of sunrays, adding a stunning look to an evening dress. Individual strands of Kenyan sourced brass have been used to form the rays creating this intricate piece. There is one downside though, much like the sun itself, the necklace must be kept away from water or else the brass won’t be shining for too much longer!

For a more casual look, the Nyota necklace combines colourful paper beads with handmade brass triangles. This added colour gives a sense of fun to the design whilst the triangles recreate the style of some traditional African jewellery reminding the wearer of Johari’s great ethics.
Quite simply, Johari believe that fashion should be ethical, not just beautiful. And with their gorgeous
designs and heartfelt philosophy, I find it hard to argue with them, don’t you think?

Written by Catherine May

Tuesday, 7 September 2010

a garden party

Thought Summer festivals were over? fret no more... Tomorrow the Prince of Wales will be opening up his own historic gardens at Clarence House to host a garden party in the heart of London!

It will be a fun filled 12 days, full of music, fashion shows, upcycling workshops, comedy and if you're a fan of Emma Watson and Eco brand People Tree then head on over on Saturday 11th September for the amazing fashion show, with Emma's new collection for People Tree! It's going to be FUN, FUN, FUN! 

WHEN: 8th-19th September 2010
WHERE: Clarence House, Chapel Royal, Cleveland Row, St. James’s, London SW1A 1DH‎                     HOW MUCH: Tickets cost £15 for adults and £7.50 for children

Click here for tickets! You would be crazy to miss out!
Written by Nyla Sammons

Clothes Swapping? YES PLEASEEEEEE

I am very excited to announce that the next big clothes swapping extravaganza is less than a month away! Yes ladies on the 30th September, trendy nightclub Amika in Kensington will be opening their doors for The Big Swish party, hosted by stylist Lupe Castro and The Big Wardrobe. Head on down there and give away your unwanted clobber and swap it with something super exciting like a gorgeous pair of high-waisted shorts or this seasons camel winter coat!

There is luxury designer section, exclusive to those swapping designer labels! What better way to get yourself a new wardrobe the cheap and cheerful way with bags of style! Premium Swiss botanical beauty brand Arbonne will be treating all, with complementary make-overs and beauty trial offers, so if it's fashion and beauty you crave then this event is right up your alley!  

Tickets cost £5.00 or £20.00 for the Golden VIP ticket (which includes a goody bag, annual membership to www.bigwardrobe.com and a five minute head start at the Swish).

Tickets can be purchased from The Big Wardrobe website http://www.bigwardrobe.com/TheBigSwish/Index.aspx

Monday, 6 September 2010

Limited edition designs from Charlie Boots

If you’re the type of person who loves wearing clothes that nobody else owns then you’ll love Charlie Boots. Her limited edition designs are produced no more than ten times meaning that the likelihood of you having that awkward moment when you glance across a room to see your friend/client/boss in the same dress is drastically reduced. Each piece has been designed to last throughout the seasons defying the modern trend for unethical throwaway fashion. So whilst the pieces in her online shop regularly change, I thought I’d mention a few current designs that I love.

With a detailed neckline and cuffs, Christa is a top that combines the large block of reclaimed cream cotton with the embellishments that add style to the design. This simple design creates a classic look that really can be worn for any smart occasion. The organic linen Calista is a reversible dress meaning you should be able to get twice the wear out of it. It creates two distinct looks and can be worn through all seasons because of its linen composition – its cooling in summer, yet warming in winter! And if that’s not a genius idea then I don’t know what is.

Another reversible offering is Caecilia made from stretch bamboo and organic cotton. Its warming red colour is complimented by black detailing if worn one way, or a patterned collar if worn on the other side.

So if you're looking for fashion with durability, uniqueness and style, then Charlie Boots is the place to shop!

Written by Catherine May

Saturday, 4 September 2010

A bright idea from Unitdot

The sun’s not gone completely just yet, so before it does I recommend taking a look at Unitdot’s AW10 range of sunglasses.

Handcrafted with bamboo and finished with some floral engraving, I think it’s impossible to deny the style of their wayfarer design. Using bamboo, it creates something different to the plastic and metal designs that have become all too familiar. Then again, if you are searching for that classic look, you can’t fault a trustworthy pair of aviators. And with Unitdot’s offering of hand crafted bamboo and polished silver frame you won’t be disappointed. They even come in two colours, silver or gold, for you to decide between.

All pairs come with a hard box case and/or a travel drawstring pouch for your convenience. So before the summer disappears for good, I’d spare a sunny thought for Unitdot.
All bamboo eyewear is available from Colin Leslie Eyewear Ltd.

Written by Catherine May

Friday, 3 September 2010

Celebrate Organic Fortnight

Organic Fortnight starts today and what better way to celebrate than heading to the shops and treating yourself to a luxurious organic number, to help you out, we have chosen our favourite organic picks!