Tuesday, 23 September 2014

London Fashion Weekend Street Style

London Fashion Week flashed by me in a blink of an eye. I barely got a chance to sift through some of the shows and pick out some common trends for SS15 before it moved on to lands afar. If like me you saw the whole event as a bit of a blur and wanted a well-rounded summary of the whole thing, then London Fashion Weekend was the place to be. 

For those of you that haven't heard of LFWEnd before, it's a more commercial version of London Fashion Week that's open to the general public, with tickets available at a variety of prices. The whole event spans from the Thursday to the Sunday and consists of dozens of designer brands showcasing their wares and giving anyone with a ticket cheeky discounts! If that wasn't enough, there are also designer and trend catwalk shows. This season's event featured designers such as Amanda Wakely, Nicholas Oakwell Couture, Notte by Marchesa and Fyodor Golan.

The trend shows are a summary of the top 4 key trends of the season. That's right!! Instead of watching shows of trends you can't get your hands on for a whole year, LFWEnd focuses on the trends for the very next season, making sure we've got our wardrobes in order for when winter does arrive.

Now if you are a fan of the whole seasonal event,  you'll know that street style is where everyone's eyes are really at. What people where to the LFW is just as important as what's on the catwalk, and that vibe still runs strong into the weekend.

Whilst I was milling around eyeing up some of the fantastic clothing and jewellery stands, I happened to notice a few people whose style game was on point! There were 4 main trends that were really prominent throughout the day, and these girls had those trends nailed.

1. Grunge
If you've read any of my fashion posts before you'll know that grunge is my go-to style. I'm addicted to black and when it comes to shoes, the chunkier the better. These were girls of my own heart. With grunge style, if you are going to be wearing a lot of the same colour e.g. black, texture and layering are key. I love how the tartan pleating contrasts with the monochrome fur on the jumper of the girl on the left, and just adds a touch of colour.
The girl on the right has added a sport luxe element to her grunge style with the sports bra style crop and the loose fitting trousers. The long cardigan works to pull the two pieces together and the cute up-do takes away any harshness.

2. One and Only
This is one of the trends focused on during the LFWEnd trend shows. It's all about patronizing one particular colour, using texture and tailoring to create feminine yet severe silhouettes.These two girls caught my eye from a mile off. The tailoring of the high wasted trousers and the crop teamed with the pixie crop hairstyle created an elegant androgynous feel. So simple yet so dramatic, and a perfect way of bringing an edgy vibe to what was already a strong shade of blue. 
White can be worn in a variety of ways, from sporty to severe, but I think this playful display of white is my favorite. It's an outfit that brings a smile to your face instantly. There's nothing over-complicated about this outfit which really goes to show that with this trend, less is more. The shift dress hangs effortlessly whilst the cleated soles take it to a casual yet kitsch level. It contrasts brilliantly with the perfectly coiffed afro, and the pastel blue bag is just the right touch of colour. 

3. Monochrome
We all know for a fact that the monochrome trend will NEVER die, so why not embrace it like this  girl has done! When its a gorgeous sunny day, sometimes all black and a bit of white can seem too harsh, but swap that black for a silvery grey or even a gunmetal shade and you've added a bit of sun to your outfit. The soft grey of the coat works really well in contrast with her light blonde hair and the white t-shirt, whilst the sunglasses again add remnants of summer. I don't want to sound cliche, but the only way I can describe this outfit is cool. And it is. It's effortlessly cool, and the epitome of casual street style. 

4. Vintage 
If vintage is your favourite style, then really the world is your oyster. Just from these three girls alone you can see the variety, and that's why I chose them. Each of them is individually unique in the way they have styled a vintage look. Vintage means you can get as crazy and daring as you like, and a perfect example is how the girl on the left has teamed a classically vintage shirt with a metallic silver pencil skirt. The chunky boots collaborate with the skirt to bring a modern edge to the shirt. The contrast of the tight fitting skirt and loose fitting shirt is always a flattering silhouette too. 
I absolutely adored the way the girl in the middle roles up the legs of her dungarees and paired them with some dainty heels, showing off just the right amount of ankle. There isn't much you can do with a pair of full length dungarees, but the way this girl has styled hers is a worthy template for everyone. 
Last but certainly not least is the girl on the right. If I'd have seen the fluffy bardot top and the vintage peg leg trousers laid out together I never would have thought they'd work, but sometimes, when you try an outfit on it can drastically change, for better or for worse. Here the outfit definitely changes for the better. The trousers are so vibrant and colourful that it needs something simple to go with it. I never would have guessed white as a worthy companion, but in this case the contrasts compliment each other. 

Steph x x x


Thursday, 18 September 2014

DIY Ripped Jeans Tutorial


Don't get me wrong, I love the fashion world and watching each season as it creates covetable trends and fads for us to stuff our wardrobes with, but nothing grinds my gears more than a rip-off trend. 

Now what do I mean by a rip-off trend? I'm talking about the popularization of something that's been around for ages and no one batted an eyelid, only for someone to wear it standing outside Somerset House during LFW and suddenly it's worth its weight in gold. OR, having to pay through the nose for a trend you can very easily make at home. 

Now this post is about the latter, and more specifically, ripped jeans! I get in such a rage seeing certain high street brands charge £40 or more for a pair of ripped jeans. Its so ridiculous. The trend is based off something we do accidentally to our clothes at home anyway, so why not do it accidentally on purpose and save yourself quite a bit of money. 

After saying that, you're probably thinking 'Well if it's that easy, what's the point in a tutorial?' Unless you're willing to adorn your unloved jeans and do a few knee skids on the living room floor, there's a quicker and less painful way to create that worn and torn look. 

The reason for the tutorial is that since this trend came about, I've seen a lot of terrible DIY attempts roaming the streets because people think it's as easy as taking a pair of scissors to your denim kneecaps, but for a realistic tear, a lot more commitment is required. 

What You'll Need
An old pair of denim jeans 
Sandpaper or a wire brush
A white pen/ eyeliner/ piece of chalk/ silver gel pen
A small, pointy and sharp pair of scissors
A small piece of cardboard

Step 1: Try on the jeans, and draw a line across the middle of your knee 

Step 2: Stuff the small piece of cardboard inside the leg you're going to start on first, so as to protect the back part of the leg. It also creates a stable surface for you to work with, and saves you sandpapering your own hand. 

Step 3: Grab your wire brush/ rip off a section of sand paper, and start rubbing along the line you've drawn. In most cases the line will rub away, but once you've made a start you'll know where to rub. How long this takes will depend on how thick the denim is, but just keep going until you start making small holes or tears in the denim. It took me a good 15 minutes on each leg, and a whole sheet of sand paper. 

Step 4: Now if you want, you can leave it hear, and leave everyday wear of the jeans to widen the holes and tears you've already made, However if you want the results straight away, stretch the fabric with your fingers and quickly slice along the tears you've already made to create one big tear. Be careful not to stab yourself in the finger like I did. 

I'd love to hear of any fashion DIY's you've achieved at home. Let me know in the comments. 

Steph x x x


Thursday, 11 September 2014

90s Hair Tutorials

Not sure if you've noticed, but elements of the 90s are subtly creeping their way back into our lives. Jelly shoes, flatforms,crop tops and bucket hats reigned the Summer fashion trends, with a Marmite-like reception. The winter months may rid us of some of these fads, but I feel the 90s theme will remain for quite some time yet.

One aspect of 90s fashion that I feel can be brought into the modern day without an assault on the visionary senses is 90s hairstyles. Teamed with all the other garish garb and we're close to a fashion disaster, but tone it down and incorporate with this season's trends and you've actually got something. 

I just recently bought a lushious floral scrunchie from New Look, which inspired me to do a little 90s hair tutorial. I've chosen my two favourite styles so far: the Double Buns and a Scrunchie Half Up Half Down

Double Buns

Scrunchie Half Up Half Down

P.S: If your hair is thick and resists backcombing like mine, use a texturising spray like label.m's Texturising  Volume Spray


Friday, 22 August 2014

Camden Bargain Buys



Ahh Camden. My home away from home. 

I'm forever discovering new and interesting places in London that fulfill my needs for the weird, wonderful and bizarre, but every time I go to London, I'll always at one point or the other find myself returning to Camden. 

Not only did it play a huge part of my childhood (yes I was an Emo/Scene Kid) but it is an amalgation of all the things I love: music, fashion, food and BARGAINS!

During the months of June/July, I got to visit Camden twice. Once with the lovely Fi Shemmans before the Cosmopolitan Superblogger Masterclass, and then with my best friend George Puddephatt for a nostalgic catch-up . 

Camden has changed a lot since I was 15/16, especially when it comes to shopping. It has definitely become more commercial. I'm not complaining, it just means you have to hunt a bit harder for those unique items. 

The t-shirt pictured above I bought from the market on the right hand side of the river, with the Vespa seating area. Because of all the food stalls there I always forget that there are shops behind them, but on this occassion Fi reminded me, and we spent a good hour or two there. The t-shirt came from a stall selling tonnes of garish yet eye-catching graphic print tees. Falling back into my monochrome habits, I fell in love with this particular one. It's got a sports luxe meet grunge vibe about it, and I could instantly picture in my head how I wanted to style it. For only £12 I thought it was an absolute bargain. 

The sunglasses were an emergency buy. Whilst waiting for George to meet me in Camden, I'd realised I'd forgotten my sunglasses, and the sun was blinding. Upon walking towards the main stables I  found a mini market on the left side of the street, with one vendor selling hundreds of on-trend sunglasses for £5. From flip-up sunglasses to oil slick, this guy had everything. I must have spent a good 20 minutes trying them on before deciding on this gold-rimmed oil slick pair. They are a proper statement and for £5 I won't be to heartbroken when I loose them (and believe me I will). 

Lastly but certainly not least are the bohemian bracelets and bindis. These came from a Middle Eastern shop just a few minutes Camden station. You can smell the incense a mile off, and the gorgeous colour scheme of oranges, reds, yellows and pinks draws you in. This shop has a pic 'n' mix system, where you grab a bowl and sift through piles of bracelets, rings, anklets and incense all priced between 20p and £1. It's hard not to go overboard, but when you see how much jewellery like this is going for in high street brands you'd be well and truly justified to do so. 

So if you're ever in London and looking for a bargain, take a little trip to Camden. Even if you don't buy anything, I guarantee it's a visit you won't forget.  


Monday, 4 August 2014

My Liebster Award Nomination

So literally 10 minutes ago I received a Twitter notification telling me that the lovely Kiarna Lewis over at Mama's Journey to Slim 'n' Curvy had nominated me for a Liebster Award.

Since I'm pretty new to the 'blogosphere' I honestly didn't know what this meant, but after a little research I've learnt it's an award given to bloggers by bloggers. Even though I've only been blogging for 4 months, I've learnt to never underestimate the value of networking and meeting other bloggers, so I can't thank you enough Kiarna for not only knowing that my blog exists but for deeming me worthy of a nomination.

The Rules

  • Link back to the blogger that nominated you
  • Answer the 11 questions that blogger has asked you
  • Nominate 11 bloggers with under 200 followers and come up with 11 questions for them. 
  • You cannot nominate the blogger who nominated you
  • You must let your nominees know they've been nominated and provide them with a link to your post so they can learn about the award.

So now the rules are out of the way, I'm gonna get to the interesting part and answer Kiarna's questions:

What do I blog about and why?
My blog is a mixture of fashion, personal style, beauty and lifestyle. It was meant to be purely fashion based as I really knew nothing about make-up, but having received so many beauty products from brands to review, my blog has turned into a mini diary of my journey of beauty discovery. I also love experiencing new things and sharing it with other people so they can be inspired to experience things too.
What's your favourite blog post you've written?
My write ups of Graduate Fashion Week. It was my first runway event as a blogger/press member and I got to take some amazing pictures of the awesome talent that was on display, and I was so happy to be able to give the designers exposure and share what I saw with my viewers.
How often do you blog?
I try to blog two times a week at the moment, but am hoping to up it to three, when I reach the 6 month mark.
Where do you see yourself in a year's time?
I would like to have moved over to Wordpress and have improved my page design, and I'd also like to have expanded the fashion and lifestyle elements of my blog. Outside of blogging, I'd like to think I'd have a graduate/entry level job in the media or PR/Marketing.
What's your most successful blog post?
In terms of the most views, it would have to be my write up of the Cosmopolitan Superblogger Masterclass. Obviously there were a limited number of tickets, and also not all bloggers can travel from far and wide to an event like that. I was lucky enough to be able to go, and thought it would only be fair to share the vital information and advice I received with as many other bloggers as possible.
What have you learned so far about blogging?
I've already mentioned the importance of networking with other bloggers, so attending blogger events and swapping tips and ideas is crucial. I've also learnt that patience is key. Looking at some of your favourite bloggers and how many followers they have and the things they're doing can be seen as motivation to grow, but can also show that for us newbies, we have a long way to go. We're not going to get thousands of followers overnight, and the only way to prove out worth is to keep on at it and enjoy it.
Apart from blogging, what else do you do?
I also write fashion and beauty content for a variety of publications, one being LSN Media, a publication house that produces newspapers covering the three counties of Bedfordshire, Hertfordshire and Buckinghamshire.
Do you enjoy blogging?
Oh god yes. It's the one thing that allows me to explore all my passions without any limitations, and the added bonus is that there are people out there who want to know what I have to say about the things I love.
What are your goals for the next 6 months?
To get more organized with my blogging. I want to have a timetable so that I do particular posts at the same time each month, just so there's an element of consistency to my blogging. I also want to come up with some post ideas that are unique to me.
What social media site do you like the most?
It would have to be Instagram. I think we all respond more enthusiastically to visuals rather than written words, and with a blog about fashion and beauty, images definitely shout louder. I also really enjoy creating a visual documentation of my life.
What's your dream job?
I would love for blogging to be my full-time job, but obviously this is something that is going to take a lot of time. I also love all animals, whether they're big, small, fluffy, slimy or spiny. Any job that enabled me to spend best part of my day with animals would be the all-time best job for me.

My nominations are:

And my questions for them...:
1)What inspired you to start blogging?
2)What's the bravest thing you've ever done?
3)If you could meet with one famous person/ iconic figure (dead or alive) who would it be?
4)What's your favourite thing about blogging?
5)If you could have any talent in the world, what would it be?
6)Savory or sweet?
7) Do you have a favourite quote?
8)What's the story behind your blog's name?
9) Do you have any guilty pleasures?
10)What are you scared of?
11)Do you eat to live or live to eat?

Congratulations everyone on your nomination, and have fun : ) x


Tuesday, 1 July 2014

Northumbria University at Graduate Fashion Week

The Northumbia show was the last show I got to see on the Saturday of Graduate Fashion Week, and it was my favorite show overall. Here is a selection of some of the collections that really caught my eye: 

Emmie Vincent
Opening the show was noted one-to-watch Emmie Vincent with a stunning white-on-white collection. Using a variety of materials to explore fabric density, texture, matte and shine, the result was a serene range of garments that were minimal yet striking in style. Transparent tulle and silicone rubber responded fantastically to the light of the runway bringing fresh, crisp vibes to each piece. 

Anna Murphy
Yet another white-on-white collection took to the runway, however this time with a glistening insertion of silver. Laser cut leather pieces and paperclip style embellishments create a futuristic vibe, whilst low necklines, pencil skirts and crop tops add an element of femininity. 

Amy Pearson
A darker contrast to the two previous collections, Amy Pearson mixed a dark, tonal palette with gold metallic creating an image reminiscent of Autumnal leaves and petals. Draped and over sized silhouettes bring a masculine edge to the collection. 

Charlotte Grant-Mills
A menswear sports collection with an 80s vibe, Charlotte Grant Mills was inspired by the body's production of adrenaline. Pink highlights and piping imitate the color of the cells within our adrenal gland. High shine bomber jackets contribute to an over sized silhouette that contrasts with the sleek streamlined lower-half. 

Caroline Smith
One of the few swimwear collections at Graduate Fashion Week, Caroline Smith reminded everyone that it was Summer with a covetable, modern and  interchangeable Summer wardrobe. Inspired by St Ives in Cornwall, this collection is very reminiscent of 1950s resort wear. Bold colors and harbor visuals created a palette so zesty and fresh I was salivating as I watched it. 

Chloe Sanders 
Kaleidoscope prints in blue, white and black made this collection a visual masterpiece. A muted palette subtly hinted to the inspiration of the Scottish landscape and its natural elements. Silhouettes mimicked the traditional Scottish highland dress, whilst checks and graphic prints brought a punk element to the collection. 

Taja Bright
Inspired by the sense of belonging to something greater, Taja Bright used denim, knitwear and patchwork to create a nomad-style collection. Silhouettes were reminiscent of vintage work-wear, but were modernized with bandana scarf prints, bomber jackets and baggy drop-crotches. 

Esther Rigg
Taking us into the future, Esther Rigg's collection was inspired by our ever-growing knowledge of space in contrast with our lacking knowledge and understanding of the oceans on our planet. A blue, silver and black palette brought the two worlds together alongside geometric prints and space-suit style silhouettes.

Ciara Artt
Inspired by the regeneration of Belfast and the community divisions that still exist, Ciara Artt used innovative pattern cutting and contemporary digital printing to create garments and silhouettes that reflect armored vehicles and body protection. 

Rachel Jefferson
If I was to ask you to imagine a womenswear collection inspired by Margaret Thatcher, I'm sure the conjured image wouldn't be all that fetching, let alone something you'd find at Graduate Fashion Week. Rachel Jefferson however has proved us all wrong and put powerful women in politics on the fashion map. Strong, over sized yet relaxed silhouettes hark back to the Margaret Thatcher days, whilst imagery of graffiti and street art and the reworking of traditional woven cloths into prints add a modern edge. Experimental layering of a range of textures from wool and leather to silks and foil bring a deconstructed grunge element to the collection. 

Katrina Wagster
Inspired by Roma travellers, Katrina Wagster mixes traditional tailoring with contemporary pattern cutting. Distressed 1930s style work wear such as heavy black work boots contrasted with a range of soft, light textures that added femininity.