Monthly Archives: September 2009

Stokes Croft Fashion Show

Fashion fever hits Stokes Croft as the lovely people at Gilly Woo, Metropolis and the PRSC have come together to showcase the best of Bristol’s independent fashion labels and outlets in a night of fashion, cabaret, performance art and music.

If you like to keep it local and want to see what Bristol’s independent labels have to offer then come along and check this event out. The night takes place this Sunday (4th October) at Metropolis on Cheltenham Road (formally Jesters) and tickets are £12 + a 50p booking fee, available from

Cabot Circus Fashion Show

A new season in fashion is marked by events across the fashion capitals of the world. Although London Fashion Week has just ended, Bristol is catching up with shows across the city, from Stokes Croft to Cribbs Causeway. This weekend the fashionable folks at Cabot Circus are kicking things off…

A year ago today Cabot Circus opened it’s doors to the public and as press I was lucky enough to watch the celebratory events unfold. One year on and Cabot Circus are celebrating with two days of catwalk shows, make-up demonstrations, competitions and give-aways. Today I went down to see the first of several catwalk shows taking place over the next two days and got a front row seat to see what the stores will be showcasing this season.

The show focused on five popular trends; biker chic, knitwear, countryside tweeds, 1940s and the the ever popular decade on the high street: electric 80s. First up were the biker models. Despite clothes from Guess, New Look, G-Star and French Connection, almost all the looks were styled with black wet-look leggings and biker boots. Nothing wrong there but it would have been nice to see a twist on this popular look. A studded black cardigan from French Connection was a highlight, as was the biker jacket from New Look, with it’s studded shoulders, see below.

The knitwear portion of the show was fairly commercial, with looks to cater for all members of the audience, from students and young mums to middle aged women and businesswomen on their lunch break. The stand-out model was dressed by River Island, who have gone down a more edgy, expressive route in the last two years. The chunky bright necklace and fuchsia pink ankle boots gave more individuality to the look.

I particularly liked the ‘Tweed and Tails’ look that came next; with a mix of checks, tweeds and knits that echoed farmers wives and horse riding in the country. The stylists had paired tweed with tweed in the form of skirt/trouser suits but I would have liked to have seen a mix of layers to show how a fitted tweed jacket could enhance a number of more casual outfits such as skinny jeans or tea dresses for example.

To interject a dose of excitement the models performed dances with one another while parading down the catwalk and during the ‘Fabulous Forties’ section I was quite concerned that one model was showing off more than just her clothes! Luckily the model in question was wearing quite a fitted skirt but it goes to show that in shows like this it is not always wise to go for a front row seat! Once again many of the looks were very commercial but a pink feather shawl from Topshop (layered over a Kate Moss tea dress) proved that you can find unique, quality and on trend pieces for a reasonable price on the high street.

A surprise hit for me was the Dynasty-inspired finale. I’m not normally one for the 80’s trend but there were some gorgeous shoes, jumpsuits and dresses on show from Topshop, Reiss, River Island and Karen Millen. My favourite item which is already on my Christmas wish list is a cropped sequined jacket from Dorothy Perkins – gorgeous! Below are some shots of the show – unfortunately mostly the later half as I spent ages sorting out the settings on my camera.

If you’re interested in seeing the fashion show then get down to Cabot Circus tomorrow for more shows, give-aways and demonstrations, or click here for more info.

Blog of The Week: What Katie Wore

Sometimes fashion can become an all-consuming mist where you can’t see further than your own leather over-the-knee boots. Everything becomes so serious and business-like when it should be fun, carefree and covered in colourful prints and drippings of lace. Style, on the other hand, is as clear as day, so individual and personal: everyone is born with a sense of style and the outcome is how they choose to nurture it.

What Katie Wore is a celebration of style, one woman’s style to be precise. This blog intends to document everything that Katie wears each day for a whole year, with the help of boyfriend blogger Joe. The twist is that it must be a different outfit everyday.

While I like to think this idea came about as a drunken bet in a pub on a quiet Monday evening, apparently the couple came up with the idea after friends and family claimed they had never seen Katie where the same thing twice, and after the pair moved in together, Katie had to slim down her wardrobe. Disney Roller Girl interviewed Katie and Joe back in February, a month after the challenge began, and the blog is still going strong.

The outfits are a quirky mix of prints, accessories, bright colours with lots of skirts and dresses and the fun and experimental nature of the blog makes it a highlight to skim through, plus waiting to see what Katie will wear next can be strangely addictive. That the name of the blog is a spin on some of my favourite childhood books is a bonus! What is most appealing is that Katie is not a model or a celebrity, she is just a real woman with an eye for fashion and style by the brightly coloured bucket load.

Sunday Jumble @ Start The Bus

Today I attended my first Start The Bus Jumble Sale as a participating seller. Ok, so that is not strictly accurate: while I normally love a good rumble in the jumble, today I was helping another fashion forward friend try to sell some of her old clothes.

At Start The Bus, pictured above, Sunday afternoons are all about relaxing with friends, drinking cider and tucking into roast dinners. On the third Sunday of the month that all happens in the setting of the Jumble Sale. Stall holders pitch up while hungry and hungover groups look for a quiet corner and comfy seating. The venue is the perfect place for this odd mish-mash and attracts lots of young, savvy shoppers looking for vintage pieces and quirky accessories, such as faux retro Ray Bans and worn out Converse Hi-tops.

Unfortunately for the four of us it was our first time so it took us a while to set up, throwing the occasional wary look at the other sellers who were clearly regulars at the whole thing. While I was neither strictly buyer nor strictly seller, I got surprisingly into the whole thing; helping to set up the stall, checking out rival stalls and trying my best not to scare potential buyers away by watching their every move (always helps a sale I find).

I think we got quite a good spot because this pillar, below, gave us a shelf at eye line that would grab the attention of passers by. The only downside was that, with the clothes in an L shape none of us were visible on both sides!

I must admit that we found ourselves splitting our time between standing vigilantly at the stall and running around to see what bargains we could find for ourselves! Two of the girls came back with purchases within minutes of setting up the stall (gorgeous brown leather doctors bag, black and gold strapless dress and a pair of grey heeled brogues)! While I was tempted by a pair of flat black brogues I did manage to control myself. The shoes were only £4 but a size 4 and since I’m 4 and a half I didn’t want to risk it…

It was amusing watching shoppers drift from table to table. Some walked right past us while others lingered to mull over the H&M chunky pendents and the rather gorgeous long teal knitted cardigan from Miss Selfridge. A white polka dot t-shirt got snapped up quite quickly while several girls also perused a chunky night cream hooded jumper. Several of the regular stall holders had loads of vintage clothes which seemed to sell like hot cakes (which also did quite well), something to bear in mind for next time.

Sadly I had to leave half way through before I even got to make a sale but the whole thing was very infectious: we had such a good time that we’re going to collaborate on another stall next time, morphing it into a super stall using the powers of vintage, homemade dresses and jewellery and fairy cakes – surly a winning combination!?

Christopher Kane @ Topshop

Ooh, its that time of year for another celebrity designer to offer up their creations to Topshop customers. This season Christopher Kane is doing the honours and I am love love loving this crocodile tank top for £60. Pricey but when you consider his ape t-shirts from his RTW collection go for more than double that, it’s actually not too bad!

Kane sprung into the world of fashion before even finishing his Central St Martins degree after winning a host of awards and setting up his own label in 2006. He started working with Topshop in 2007 and this his third Autumn/Winter range for the company. Normally known for his feminine, body conscious silhouettes and use of fabrics though this season he seems to have gone down a more masculine route as most of the pieces in his Topshop collection are all studs and rivets, dark colours and simple outlines. I’m not hugely into rivets but the prints are gorgeous!

Both the Cabot Circus and Cribbs Causeway stores have a limited to stock so be prepared to bare your teeth if you want one of these pieces!