Thursday, 23 April 2009

London is my Fashion Playground...

The shot used in the Matthew Williamson for H&M ad campaign

It's not very often that temperatures soar in London, especially in April, but believe it or not, right not we're experiencing a HEATWAVE. Yes, waking up this morning the weather is glorious, again! I simply cannot stay in my Hoxton flat glued to my laptop today. Temptation is all around to go outside and the weather is not the only attraction...

Today is St. Georges Day and a celebration of all things English, but it is also the day that the eagerly anticipated Matthew Williamson for H&M line launches in selected stores nationwide. With this in mind there's only one destination on my radar, the flagship H&M store on Regent Street.

I set off early and head to the West End. On the way I check Twitter, where I learn that there has been some fashion-mad people queuing outside of the store since 6:30 this morning! Hmm, they must be devoted fans, there maybe nothing left!

I arrive to find the queue has disappeared and, thankfully, there's still plenty of vividly printed, floaty dresses left to satisfy me. The collection is impressive, with a combination of tough studded, leather waistcoats, silk blouses in shades of fuchsia and lime, a silk khaki coloured jumpsuit, a shiny blue tuxedo and vibrant printed dresses.

Some of the items from the first Matthew Williamson for H&M collection
Nicky Hilton wearing a shift dress and clutch bag both from the collection
Unfortunately, I'm too late for the bright pink tulip dress, zip leather jacket and Williamson's signature printed maxi dress (the most expensive item at £199.99). It seems the early crowd has completely consumed every last one of these delicious garments. They still hang in the window, though, and I gaze there for a while, before I leave with my purchase of a vivid blue, aqua and turquoise, leather patchwork clutch.

My purchase: the blue metallic, leather clutch with Matthew Williamson clasp

After my Matthew Williamson fix, I'm off to Carnaby Street to visit the 'White Dress Project' exhibition at the London College of Fashion space.

While I'm in the area, I cross to Hanover Street and wander past Vogue House. I get butterflies in my stomach as I remember that it was only last week that I submitted my 2009 Vogue Talent Contest entry. Fingers crossed!

I walk through Hanover Square gardens before I head on to Oxford Street. Stopping at Uniqlo, I'm impressed by the collection of around 300 statement tees on offer. I walk further up the street and I'm drawn into River Island by a Union Jack, oversized, leather handbag. Priced at £180, this delightful piece of British arm candy is now on my 'wish' list.

Distractions, distractions, where I'm really heading is to the top of Oxford Street to the flagship New Look store. Today the seventh Gold by Giles Deacon collection is launched in store, bravely choosing to go head-to-head with Matthew Williamson's H&M debut so I'm eager to check out the competition.

The collection is more affordable and the shades of coral, white and royal blue are attractive. It's made up of lots of casual pieces with the odd piece of statement party/evening wear. Embellishment and sequin is a feature that Giles Deacon has carried through from his earlier Gold collections, making this range sparkly and saleable.

I head to Starbucks to gather my thoughts whilst one of my favourite songs plays: The Sea by Morcheeba. 'I left my soul there... down by the sea...' Bliss!

As much as I've enjoyed my day of high street shopping whilst soaking up the sun, I'm aware that I must get back and work on the magazine I have in the pipeline. But, firstly, I make time for a trip to the new Dolce & Gabbana cosmetics counter in Selfridges... Happy days!

Thursday, 16 April 2009

Project Runway

Leanne Marshall has become the winner of the fifth series of the American version of Project Runway. Aired on British TV this week, Leanne beat the competition with her stunning, intricate designs, inspired by waves and the ocean.

Bagging the prize of $100,000, Leanne has since started up her own clothing line: LeAnimal. Her designs featured in a fashion story in Elle magazine, modelled by her Project Runway model, Tia.

Garments from LeAnimal are made to order and can be purchased from

Leanne Marshall's Spring/Summer 09 Collection as seen on Project Runway at Bryant Park.

Tuesday, 7 April 2009

All That Glitters

Admittedly I'm an avid fan of all things of a sparkly nature, so imagine my excitement when I came across this 'Stardust' fashion spread in the April 09 issue of W magazine. Shot by fashion photographers Inez Van Lamsweerde and Vinoodh Matadin, the glittering shoot was styled by Camilla Nickerson...

Belle Du Jour: Scarlett Johansson

You know you've reached the big time when you appear on the cover of none other than French Vogue, which is exactly what Scarlett Johansson has achieved this month. Arguably THE best fashion magazine on the market, the April 09 issue of the magazine pays tribute to Scarlett and her womanly curves, with references to fifties icon, Marilyn Monroe.

As the face of Dolce & Gabbana's new cosmetics line which is being launched this month, it seems Mademoiselle Johansson's modelling career is going from strength to strength...

Shot for French Vogue in Los Angeles by Mario Sorrenti.

The new D&G cosmetics campaign.

Friday, 3 April 2009

Topshop In The City

Saavy New York shoppers were delighted by the arrival of Topshop into the Big Apple yesterday. Queuing from 6am, the crowd was eager to see what the British high-street brand had to offer. The new flagship store occupies 25,000 ft and is located in SoHo.

The opening was a very British affair, with many Union Jacks and crowns celebrating the 'Britishness' of the brand. Standing atop a podium arm-in-arm, Topshop boss, Sir Philip Green and supermodel, Kate Moss officially open the store to the American public.

The opening of the new Manhattan store coincided with the launch of the Spring/Summer 09 Kate Moss for Topshop collection. Kate used the opportunity to model one of her designs: a vivid green floating dress with thigh-high splits, which can be purchased from the new collection. The collection consists of feminine floral and Liberty print dresses, as well as tough, edgy jackets and sharp, sexy silhouettes. Here's a taster...