Monthly Archives: March 2011

BFW stretch logo

Bristol Fashion Week S/S 11 pt.2

As promised here are a few more photos from Bristol Fashion Week – I loved the Cath Kidson look from John Lewis and the safari chic look from Warehouse. If you missed it you can read my write up here. What were your favourite looks?

Andrew Barton and Mark Hayes present Bristol Fashion Week

Andrew Barton and Mark Hayes present Bristol Fashion Week

Ladylike brights at M&S

Ladylike brights at M&S

Cath Kidson and Jager for John Lewis

Cath Kidson and Jager for John Lewis

Children's fashions from Next

Children's festival fashion from Next

Safari chic at Warehouse

Safari chic at Warehouse

 

Florals at John Lewis

Florals at John Lewis

Sun dresses at M&S

Sun dresses at M&S

M&S S/S 11

M&S S/S 11 looks in the frame

BFW stretch logo

Bristol Fashion Week S/S 11

Bristol Fashion Week tent at Cribbs Causeway

Bristol Fashion Week tent at Cribbs Causeway

Bristol Fashion Week S/S 11 is here, and so is my seasonal round-up of the event. Once again the bright pink show tent landed at the Mall in Cribbs Causeway this week and while international fashion weeks may have finished, Bristol is only just getting warmed up. The event kicked off officially on Wednesday evening, with daily catwalk shows and a Beauty Zone in The Mall, packed full of free treats for shoppers to enjoy.

Any Twitter followers out there will know that I’ve been ridiculously busy with writing deadlines this week and pretty much chained to my desk (barely seeing a glimpse of the gorgeous sunshine we’ve had in Bristol) but I couldn’t wait to get away from the computer and attend the BFW press show yesterday afternoon.

Andrew Barton and Mark Heyes were back at Cribbs to present the show and I have to say they were on top form yesterday. The boys have great banter but in previous shows this has veered towards cheesy: not this time – Andrew was borderline biting with his wry comments about the royal wedding and the festival look – apparently he’d rather stay in with a nice bottle of Shiraz.

BHS Black jumpsuit The show itself was great – I don’t want to ruin it for anyone going but the opening scene was a corker. John Lewis kicked things off with a floral theme and denim, festival fashion, wedding outfits and beachwear all cropped up.

I surprised myself by being dran to a gorgeous black jumpsuit from BHS, which I haven’t been in since the time abut ten years ago when they used to do a cracking Christmas display and joke presents. I’ve always found their window displays a little dated and lacklutre but as I say, this jumpsuit and corsage combo, left, presently surprised me.

As I’ve said before on Ship-Shape, Spring/Summer always tends to err on the side of caution with denim, maxi dresses, florals etc and the show at Bristol Fashion Week was no exception but that isn’t necessarily a bad thing as it forces designers to update and refresh popular trends.

I loved the safari chic look from Warehouse – they had a nude quilted leather jacket that looked divine paired with paper bag waistband trousers, while M&S had some very Mad Men style ladylike printed dresses, accessorised with cutesy umbrellas and rather dashing escorts. Oasis showcased a navy lace dress that could be the cool double of Erdem’s firey red number and there were some cracking pieces by Cath Kidson and Jager for John Lewis.

The choreography was refreshing – a mix of dance routines with a strong theme for each brand, from Rio carnivals at Wallis to gothic horror with a Dirty Dancing twist at River Island. The festival scene, complete with a rendition of Bon Jovi’s Livin’ on a Prayer on a cardboard guitar by one of the child models had the crowds dancing and clapping with applause.

As well as catwalk antics we were also treated to mini cupcakes and bucks fizz, and beauty treats and goodies galore inside The Mall’s Beauty Zone, not to mention lots of discuonts to spend at Cribbs at a goodie bag full of treats – much needed after I accidentally skipped lunch!

There is more to say and more photos to follow but I’ve got to get back to the grindstone. Take a gander at some of my snaps from the day, below, and if you’ve already been to BFW or are planning on going let me know what you thought by leaving a comment : )

Bristol Fashion Week runs at The Mall, Cribbs Causeway from now until Sunday 27th March. Tickets start at £8.50 and shows run throughout the day. For ticket information visit the Cribbs Causeway website.

Stunning violinist and model 'Lettuce' opened the show

Jager at John Lewis

Jager at John Lewis

Oasis at Bristol Fashion Week

Oasis at Bristol Fashion Week

Chiffon blouses at M&S

Chiffon blouses at M&S

Wallis channel Rio at Bristol Fashion Week

Wallis channel Rio at Bristol Fashion Week

Andrew Barton and Mark Heyes at Bristol Fashion Week finale

Andrew Barton and Mark Heyes lead the Bristol Fashion Week finale

Fashion Show Alert: (Ox)vamping It Up

Oxvamp UWE fashion show

I’ve been rushed off my feet all week but couldn’t wait for a Something for The Weekend… post to share this fashionable event. The Oxvamp Fashion Show is a collaboration between UWE fashion students and Orange Street Creative Studios, in honour of Oxfam’s amazing online store.

If you’re anything like me you love nothing more than a rummage in a vintage store, charity shop or jumble sale (proof of my addiction can be found littered throughout this blog) and I like to think that scoring points on the ethical fashion front balances out all those debt-inducing trips to the high street, right? ; )

As well as numerous charity shops Oxfam also have several Oxfam Boutiques across the country (including Bath and Cardiff) dedicated to vintage clothes, custom creations and re-worked garments. Here in Bristol we have the Oxfam Hub, based in Portishead. Although it isn’t open to the public, the Hub is essential to Oxfam’s online store – a dedicated warehouse where volunteers sort through stock and upload images and product descriptions to the site for us savvy shoppers to peruse. The Hub was kind enough to donate lots of stock not fit re-sale to Orange Street and UWE, whose students have now transformed preloved garments giving them a new lease of life.

UWE fashion students select clothes from Oxfam's Portishead Hub

UWE fashion students select clothes from Oxfam's Portishead Hub. Photo courtesy of Orange Street Creative Studios

It’s a closely guarded secret as to what we can expect on the catwalk, taking place next Friday, but Anna Scully, a UWE student and part of the team behind the event promises garments will be “very avant-garde and unrecognisable from their original state. These pieces will then go onto the online store ready for purchase.” If you can’t wait there are also sneak peaks of the garments on the Oxvamp Fashion Show Facebook page.

As well as a catwalk show there will be drinks and nibbles aplenty at this fashionable harbourside venue – what better way to kick-start your weekend? Tickets are going fast so if you want to do your bit for a good cause and see future designers in action, come down to the third floor of Bush House (above the Arnolfini) on Friday 1st April at 7pm – don’t forget to book your ticket in advance to avoid disappointment.

The Oxvamp Fashion Show is free but donations are welcome and tickets must be booked in advance. You can find Facebook event details here and to book your ticket click here.

Oops, I did it again: New Look S/S11

Peach blouse New Look

There is no excuse, other than that I lack willpower. The sun was shining, it was a beautiful day and I couldn’t help but do a spot of window shopping as I soaked up the rays. Given what happened at Primark a few weeks ago I should have learn’t but as I walked past New Look in Cabot Circus I couldn’t help but be drawn, like a moth to the proverbial flame.

Although I find there is less innovation in the S/S seasons (what’s that? Bright colours? Florals? Nautical? Why fancy seeing you here!) I do find it the most exciting, high street wise, as it means summer is but weeks away. Days become longer, Sunday afternoon trips to the park become de rigor, and soon, very soon, we will no longer need to think about umbrellas, mittens, coats and jackets – we can walk outside with a pair of sunglasses and a smile, knowing (as much as one can know about British weather) that everything will be fine. Sure we can layer up but we do so because we can, not becuase we have to in an attempt to avoid frostbite.

Anyway, where was I? Oh right, New Look. New Look were a big brand when I was younger but somewhere between college and graduation I was distinctly nonplussed with their seasonal offerings. When Cabot Circus opened a couple of years ago I was impressed with the New Look store – huge space split over two floors, spacious changing rooms and an amazing shoe department. I think they have a strong position on the high street and have a great mix of seasonal trends and basic pieces and I’m always tempted by one thing or another, my most recent trip being no exception.

I was looking for a lace waistcoat I spotted at the branch on Oxford Street a few weeks ago but then became distracted by some gorgeous blouses and bright t-shirts. As I walked towards the changing rooms, barely visible under my pile of treasures, I knew it wouldn’t end well – I wanted EVERYTHING! But i do have some willpower, so instead I settled for two gorgeous, slouchy blouses in a blush pink and 70s salmon colours, plus a black and cream tunic with exposed zip.

Did I find the perfect lace waistcoat? No, but given how productive this trip was I’m happy to go back and search for it again : )

New Look S/S 11Pink blouse with vintage beltBlack and cream tunic with exposed zip New Look S/S 11

Something for the weekend… Red Nose Day!

Comic Relief t-shirt

Did you get yours? In aid of Comic Relief 2011 Vivianne Westwood has designed a range of t-shirts for Red Nose Day, available at TK Maxx. Featuring historical figures from punks to Elizabethan poets, the black and white printed tees have all been accessorised with the obligatory red nose. As you can see I decided to go for Mr Shakespeare, but it was only that I got him home and tried him on that I noticed his eyes really do follow you around the room – spooky!

Accessorised with a red ribbon at the back and a slick of scarlet lipstick, I’ll be wearing my t-shirt with pride today, safe in the knowledge that half the proceeds will go towards helping beat poverty in Africa and here in the UK. While I dressed down, some celebs have taken to dressing up – below are a few of my fave looks from the stars, including Alek Wek, David Gandy and the adorable Georgie Henley, of The Chronicles of Narnia fame.

The t-shirts, which feature historical icons and familiar faces such as William Shakespeare, are made from 100% Fairtrade organic cotton and from the proceeds of every sale, at least £5 will go towards Comic Relief – you can even find out where your money could be spent on the TK Maxx website -so for the price of a tenner you’re ticking ethical, charitable and designer boxes – what could be better than that?

Comic Relief Vivianne Westwod

Don’t forget that as well as t-shirts there are hundreds of other ways you can get involved with Comic Relief this weekend, not least by tuning in to tonight’s Red Nose Day coverage on BBC1. As well as plenty of comedy there will be documentaries about how your money is spent in developing countries, plus info on how you can donate. Have a great weekend and don’t forget to do something funny for money!

Georgie Henley fro Comic ReliefTK Maxx Comic Relief David GandyTK Maxx Comic Relief Alek Wek