Tag Archives: Next

Subtle Summer Florals

H and M dress Next hat and Primark sunglasses

I’m excited to see florals featuring in A/W trends this season – though looking at said trends does make me mourn for summer a little – because floral prints are so versatile.

I took a mix of floral prints with me on my recent holiday to Italy, and this dress by H&M is one of them.

I found it in the sale last year for a mere fiver, and I love the fact that it not only has pockets but also boning, which helps give the top half of the dress a bit of well-needed structure – not bad for £5. I teamed it with this straw trilby hat from Next, and the tan woven sandals and sunglasses are from Primark.

I’ll be adding a pair of leggings and some ankle boots to this dress to see me through the season. What summer trends will you be wearing through till winter?

H and M dressH and M dress and clothes swap beltH and M dress and Next hat H and M floral dress

S/S12 Fashion Show at Cabot Circus

American Apparel

Yesterday I took a trip to Cabot Circus to see one of their S/S12 fashion shows, which is part of a weekend of catwalk shows, pampering treats and discounts. The show I watched was a good mix of current trends, featuring the likes of Oasis, American Apparel, above, LK Bennet and Next.

I managed to miss the rain showers and had the pleasure of sitting next to Christina from Just So Fashion for the show, and chatting to Dan from Last Style of Defence afterwards, before rushing back home – via the Topshop sale (more on that later) – to tackle more DIY and put our bathroom back together.

Anywho, enough of my domestic dramas, what about the show? While the usual S/S suspects were out in force, such Crew‘s nautical, preppy look, but there were also some fantastic takes on this season’s trends, most notably pastels from New Look, and a novel take on mid-century chic, mixed with vibrant prints, from River Island. The show combined some great choreography – an element of local catwalk shows that I’m not normally that keen on – such as the workwear scene by Next, which you can see below, and a fantastic scene from River Island, featuring the most glamourous 50s housewives I’ve ever seen, complete with yellow Marigolds and fluro washing baskets.

American Apparel and Bristol’s Garment Quarter provided lashings of nonchalant cool, while the later bought a touch of designer brilliance to the show with a show-stopping Vivienne Westwood Red Label dress and sophisticated menswear from Unconditional. After the finale of pastels from New Look, which included mint chiffon pleated skirts and lace dresses in the shade of Parma Violets, I poped behind the catwalk to the live blogging lounge, which you can read about here.

I had a lovely morning at the show, and it was great to see some familiar faces, too. Did you catch one of the shows yesterday? What ws your favourite trend? If you couldn’t make it yesterday then fear not, there are several more shows taking place underneath the glass roof of Cabot Circus today – click here for show times and more info.

Florals at Oasis

Floral dresses at Oasis

American Apparel

Clashing textures at American Apparel

River Island

River Island offered an updated version of 50s housewives

Workwear by Next

Workwear by Next

Garment Quarter

Understated preppy from Garment Quarter

Christina from Just so Fashion captures the action

Bright whites at Mango

New Look balloons

Pretty pastels from New Look

BFW S/S 12: part one

BFW closing scene

Last Friday, along with 200 of Bristol’s best dressed fashion fanatics, I took my seat at Bristol Fashion Week’s first ever Live Blogging Event. Cribbs Causeway’s biannual event presents each fashion season from a high street point of view, through catwalk shows, pampering treats and discounts and competitions for all the brands that take part – hurrah!

I love going to BFW every season and I was interested to see how the Mall team would approach their first blogger dominated show. I didn’t see many laptops inside the tent but there was plenty of tweeting going on - particularly whenever a male model came on stage. M&S provided the pink fizz and fondant fancies, both of which hit the spot after a loooong week at work!

I took my seat with the lovely Amy from Annie by Amy and Charlotte of Charlotte’s Web and it wasn’t long before the lights went down and hosts Mark Heyes and Andrew Barton appeared on stage. This duo have been presenting BFW for yonks and I love the way Mark’s perkiness is tempered with Andrew’s bitting comments and the general banter between them.

Each scene of the show covered a key S/S12 trend, including pastels, sports lux and tribal prints, with the more predictable high street summer staples – wedding-friendly prom dresses, suits and beachwear. The difference this year is that with a blogger-friendly audience, most of us knew what to expect – those that went to LFW last September saw first-hand what trends designers were loving, and we’ve seen enough articles, trend reports and outfit posts to know that pastels are So Hot Right Now.

BFW opening scene John Lewis

BFW's opening scene, courtesy of John Lewis

It made sense then, that BFW chose to open with a candy cane scene from John Lewis, complete with bubblegum blue lips and giant cellophane collars. Half a dozen models striking robotic poses in pretty pastel dresses was the perfect way to open the show and I felt there was a heavy influence of Katy Perry, Meadham Kirchhoff, Lady Gaga and Louis Vuitton in there.

While I’m not sure I could pull off pastels, I did fall in love with the tribal print scene, mid-century Mad Men-esque outfits from Jigsaw, and gorgeous tropical prints by Oasis. I also loved the production values (is that even the correct term, or does that sound like the most pompous thing you’ve ever heard?) Basically, I loved the music, the graphic backdrops and the tightness of each scene – this season the added dance numbers and acting didn’t overpower the show, or the clothes. What did you think of the show?

I’ve got lots more photos to come, so there will be another post shortly, but for now here are some of my best bits of BFW S/S12…

BFW hosts Andrew Barton and Mark Heyes

BFW hosts Andrew Barton and Mark Heyes

John Lewis candy colours

Candy colours from John Lewis

Scene two- Next

The UK's biggest event this year, tackled by Next and some semi-naked male models

Scene four - tribal from M&S

BFW scene four - tribal prints from M&S

Ignore the model and look at what she's carrying! I'm a little bit in love with this Radley bag...

Radley Happy Camper Leather Grab Handbag

... the Happy Camper Leather Grab Handbag from Radley. It's not my usual cup of tea, but there is something about this bag that I just love : )

Scene nine - mid century Jigsaw

Mid-century chic from Jigsaw, with a wicked 50s kitchenette backdrop

Scene eight - nudes from Miss Sefridge

Nudes and blush tones from Miss Selfridge

Clothes Swap: Topshop, florals & denim delights

Next floral trousers

I mentioned on a recent RTW post that my friend, S, hosted a clothes swap last month. I’m a big fan of clothes swapping for several reasons; aside from giving once-loved clothes a new home, doing your bit for the environment, and usually consuming a few glasses of wine and half a bag of kettle chips into the bargain, there is the complete randomness of it.

Attend a clothes swap at a friends house, the local church hall or at an established boutique and you will be confronted with a wealth of clothes and accessories you wouldn’t normally look for on the high street. You can delve into the personal taste of others and (hopefully) find some fab new clothes to add to your wardrobe.

At S’s event there were beaded peter pan collar blouses, floral print dresses and everything in between. Anything that didn’t come home with us was taken to a local charity shop so we weren’t the only ones to benefit, plus I think we all felt a lot better for clearing out our overloaded wardrobes.

So, what did I take home? Take a look…

Denim smock dress

Denim smock dress, no label, perfect for summer

Topshop feather effect skirt

Feather-effect layered skirt, Topshop

Next floral harem pants

Floral harem pants, Next. Granted, these don't look much on the hanger, but they'll look great with my white Converse and a plain tee

As well as this I also came away with a tan coloured waist-cinching belt (you can never have too many) and a pair of grey cable knit leggings, which I wore on my recent jolly to Manchester.

What’s been your best clothes swap find? Let me know by commenting below…

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