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London Fashion Week Spring 2013

Today I’m going to be sharing reviews of some of the lovely collections that came off the Spring 2013 London Fashion Week catwalks – From the big names like Burberry and Mulberry to the well-loved but somewhat less established designers like Matthew Williamson and Christopher Kane.

Enjoy!

Burberry:

Color, color, and more color. The Burberry runway show was a veritable rainbow of color-drenched trench coats, dresses, and separates. Christopher Bailey also played with textures and fabrics including shimmering metallics, tinted plastic, and shiny holographic prints – Giving the classic brand a fun, futuristic twist.

Capes, hotpants, puffy capsleeves, swimwear, cropped jackets, leather, dramatic belts, lace brilliant metallic handbags, and colorful open-toed heels added to the brilliance of the collection.

Mulberry:

Fabulous outerwear seemed to be the name of the game in London and while Burberry was bright and festive, Mulberry was a bit more demure, however no less ornate. Bronzy gold, peachy cream, minty green, and blues from pale to midnight.

The brocades, embroideries, and patterns were phenomenal, very earthy and flora based, something of a mix between Fall and Spring. I loved the use of florals on the clothing, handbags, and shoes simultaneously, rather than be over the top it was totally chic. I also loved the outerwear – The oversized silhouettes and large, upturned collars were perfection.

Acne:

The clothes at Acne were bold – Dramatic stripes, bright colors, graffiti prints, colorblocking, black leather, straps & buckles, adapted gladiator platforms, and parachute silhouettes.

All in all a very wearable collection of interesting and eye-catching separates perfect for the Acne girl. I especially liked the maxi skirts, vertical stripes, and buckle adorned vests.

House of Holland:

This 90’s grunge inspired collection was one for the books – The dark, moody colors were perfectly suited to the dramatic checkered patterns, graphic tees, beanies, skater shorts, and maxi silhouettes.

These were great pieces that immediately made me nostalgic for the music of my Junior High and High School days – Especially the shrunken baby tees, slouchy knit caps, and midriff bearing tops.

Erdem:

Python prints on retro silhouettes may not sound like a winning combination, but Erdem proved that it could work and even infused the collection with hints of neon and lace.

Little details make this collection really pop – Driving gloves, sheer lace, pleats, floral applique, cut-outs, high-necklines, coat-dresses, and intricate beading. Overall the collection was prim and proper but with a fun, wild side.

Pringle of Scotland:

Pringle started as a knitwear brand and this season they returned to their roots showing a lovely collection of separates which included a number of variations on their typical belted twinset.

When you say Pringle of Scotland what comes to my mind are clean lines, a preppy vibe, belted separates, and argyle, and this collection showed great versions of all of those staples.

Matthew Williamson:

Fun prints, brilliant colors, and dramatic details are what we’ve come to expect from Matthew Williamson, and this season’s collection really delivered.

Easy separates appeared in tie dye prints and with eye-catching embroidery and beading. His party girl clients will live in the float a-line silhouettes, mini skirts, and jeweled dresses paired with gem-encrusted belts and his new shoe collection.

Peter Pilotto:

Print lovers will have something amazing to look forward to from Peter Pilotto come Spring – Digital prints, mixing & matching patterns, and bright, bold prints.

Dramatic, eye-catching, and one-of-a-kind. The pieces shown at Peter Pilotto were extraordinary, I especially enjoyed the pants, oversized peplums, and dramatic, Latin-inspired ruffles.

Preen:

Preen made a triumphant return from the New York Fashion Week with a blue and white collection highlighted with hints of yellow and red, and covered in all-over prints.

The patchwork-like use of swatches of prints, combined with the tailoring, dramatic slits, verticle white stripes, and long, lean silhouettes gave the collection an architectural, structed feel.

Christopher Kane:

The Christopher Kane show was surprisingly delicate and sweet – A full 180 from previous collections full of black, slashed fabric, and safety pins.

Pale colors, light fabrics, dramatic drapes & folds, sheer pieces, clear plastic, and slits & cut-outs that somehow appeared elegant and refined despite the skin peeking through.

Mary Katrantzou:

The Queen of Prints returns! Taking banknotes and stamps as her visual inspiration she put together a unique and dramatic collection of dresses and separates covered with intricate patterns.

These pieces could never be confused with having been created by another designer – They were utterly one-of-a-kind – Simultaneously exotic and modern but with an old-fashioned air. I adored the matching pant & tunic sets, they were divine and I can’t wait to see how Hollywood interprets them to the red carpet.

Temperley London:

The Temperley London collection was all about bright colors, fun prints, nautical stripes, and retro silhouettes for this coming Spring – All the pieces fun but a little formal, and utterly wearable.

The sundress was reworked with a 50’s vibe and paraded down the runway in a variety of colors, patterns, and fabrics. There were also jumpsuits, lace & embroidery covered dress & gowns, shirt dresses, sweater sets, and too chic for words sun hats.

Sources: Style.com, Fashionologie, The Stylist, & Tom & Lorenzo

Previous LFW & Spring 2013 Collections: New York Fashion Week Spring 2013 – Part I, New York Fashion Week Spring 2013 – Part II, New York Fashion Week Spring 2013 – Part III, New York Fashion Week Spring 2013 – Street Style & Front Row FashionLondon Fashion Week Fall 2012, London Fashion Week – Street Style & Front Row Fashion, London Fashion Week Spring 2012 Round-Up, and Streetstyle & Front Row Fashion – London Fashion Week.

Additional reviews, photographs, shows, and videos: The Best Looks from London Fashion Week: Spring 2013 from Harper’s Bazaar, Our 10 Favorite Looks From London Fashion Week from Refinery 29, and Runway Recap: The Best Shoes From London Spring 2013 from Fashionlogie.

What’s your favorite thing about London Fashion Week? The chic outerwear, bold, innovative prints, or the retro, ladylike touches?

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Jewelry Essentials – Pieces Every Woman Should Own

In my Real Girls Need Real Closets and Real Girls Need Real Closets – Accessories Edition I discussed the pieces that are worth putting money into in order to build a complete wardrobe. Today I’d like to focus on what jewelry should make it into your collection in this guest post for Sasha Maks Vintage.

Over the years you’ll invest in new accessories, update your collection, and pick up great pieces on your travels, of both the new and vintage variety. Truth be told, putting together the perfect jewelry collection isn’t something that happens overnight, it’s a long process and while your personal style may evolve over time, the basics of what you should acquire will remain relatively static. With that in mind, here are some tips and suggestions to keep in mind while you’re shopping!

Statement Necklace:

Having a dramatic and eye-catching piece at your neck is a Must. Something that’s versatile and can work as the central focus for your look at a number of events – From casual to dressy to office appropriate.

{Monet Enamel Fan Necklace 1970s – $225}

{Inspiration Board on ASOS Fashion FinderNonoo – Letticia Floral Shorts, Jaeger Sleeveless Silk Blouse, Suuna Black Arabella Ladies Sunglasses & COGGLES EXCLUSIVE Lorelei Black & Blue Shoes}

Summer CasualInspiration for this look: Olivia Palermo’s fabulous floral shorts look from Verona, Italy photographed in July of 2012. A statement necklace can be the focal point of a basic or monochromatic look, or just another fabulous piece in a fun, vibrant outfit like this one.

Cuff Bracelet:

A cuff or wide bracelet allows you to throw on a single piece of jewelry and call it a day. This acts as an understated but dramatic piece that can complete a look without a lot of effort.

{Silver-tone Wide Ridged Cuff 1970s – $135}

 

{Inspiration Board on ASOS Fashion FinderFluoro Stripe Double Breasted Knit Coat by M Missoni, Black Peep Toe Booties, Diva clutch plain black leather from Boticca, Suuna Black Arabella Ladies Sunglasses, Mixed Chain Collar Necklace & ‘Betty’ thin leather dress}

Punk Princess – Inspiration for this look: Punk and edgy are two ways to go with a thick silver bracelet, so take inspiration from Brooklyn Blonde and try something new & exciting by pairing unexpected pieces. Unique styling, like these peep-toe booties and the sleeveless trench, make a look fresh and unique and 100% you.

Evening Earrings:

Whether you’re wearing a simple suit and attending a work function or a fun Little Black Dress for a cocktail party, you need a pair of killer earrings to punctuate your look.

{Trifari Beaded Ball Drop Earrings 1960s – $165}

 

{Inspiration Board on ASOS Fashion FinderLeiby Wide Leg Jumpsuit With Belt, Fatale Natural Shoes, ASOS HARLOT Stiletto Leather Sandals, Lipsy Playsuit With Scallop Edge Hem & Blue, Jade, Noir & Sand Jersey & Silk Jumpsuit}

Retro Luxe – Inspiration for this look: The beautiful & fashionable Liz Cherkasova from Late Afternoon’s fun Summertime look. Depending on the size, style, and color, dangling earrings can easily go from day to-night, the key is to pick the right outfit to complement them.

Cocktail Ring:

A one-of-a-kind cocktail ring is an absolute must have. You need a piece that is fun and flashy, that makes you feel glamorous and acts as a great conversation starter.

{Rhinestone Cocktail-Party Ring 1960s – $95}

{Inspiration Board on ASOS Fashion FinderEmerald Sarong Knot Cocktail Dress by Halston Heritage & ASOS HYLA Strappy Heeled Sandals}

Cocktail FabulousInspiration for this look: Katie Holmes’s September 2012 cover for C Magazine, photographed by Matt Jones. A fun ring is very versatile, it’ll work equally well for girls night out, after work drinks, or a cocktail party.

Personality Piece(s):

Whatever your style, whatever your taste, you should have a stand out piece of jewelry in your collection that is 100% YOU. It doesn’t matter what it is, it could be s a fabulous pair of drop earrings, or a handful of stunning bracelets for stacking, or a simple pearl necklace that you inherited from your mother.

{Left: Christian Dior Faux Coral Demi-Parure 1970s – $1250, Top Right: Snake Bangle 1970s – $135 & Bottom Right: Faux Jade Cocktail Ring 1960s – $135}

Me? I’m obsessed with classic gold vintage pieces and animal jewelry like the pieces above. They suit my classic style and act as great finishing touches for my outfits.

{Inspiration Board on ASOS Fashion Finder – Left Outfit: Cream Asymmetrical Tie Blouse by DKNY, Black Leather Exposed Zip Skirt by McQ Alexander McQueen & Reiss Lotta BUCKLE SHOE BOOTS, and Right Outfit: White Poppy Blouse by Vivienne Westwood Anglomania, Black Full Flippy Skirt by Halston Heritage & Red Bow Front Patent Pointed Court by Moschino Cheap & Chic}

Black & White StunnerInspiration for the look: Donna Karan Fall 2012 Ready-to-Wear & Temperley London Pre-Fall 2012. Perfect for a work party or a formal evening, the cut, silhouette, and lengths can be adjusted to suit the appropriateness of a given outing.

All jewelry from Sasha Maks Vintage – Original post on the Sasha Maks Vintage Blog

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London Fashion Week Fall 2012

Welcome to London Fashion Week for Fall 2012!

Source

The first runway show for the “lower end” McQ by Alexander McQueen collection was earthy and dramatic. Across the leaf strewn floor marched models in dark khaki and olive-green, floral, brocade, plaid and leather military-inspired dresses and coats with thick belts and over-the-knee lace up boots. 

As interesting as the womenswear was, I couldn’t take my eyes off the menswear. To die for coats and well-tailored suits with a retro feel, paired with great boots, belts, gloves and ties. Just exquisite.

Check out the FabSugar photos and commentary here.

Mulberry was all about oversized winter coats and thick knit sweaters in all sorts of furs and fabrics, which complimented the Fall-colored collection perfectly. The neon orange may have been a bit much for most of us, but the dark florals, Missoni-like zigzag patterns and Autumn-inspired yellows, greens and blues were perfect for Fall.

And as always the handbags are absolutely covetable. Want to see these great looks in motion? You can see the runway show here.

Christopher Kane’s  collection took the sinister plot of an 80’s movie as its muse and the end results were dramatic with shiny dark fabrics, twisted leather, deeply colored flowers and metallic, oil-slick patterns. The pants and separates were particularly well done while the leather halter dresses definitely had a sensational nighttime flair.

FabSugar has more photos here and Fashionology weighs in here.

As always the Matthew Williamson show was a free-for-all of prints, colors and textures. Slim trousers appeared in every form from shimmery florals to metallics to pastels, but the highlight was the dresses. The simplicity of the silhouettes – shirt dresses and basic shifts – played against the neon embellishments, brightly colored sequins, metallic blues & greens, sheer panels, peekaboo hemlines and dramatic patterns.

Need more? You can see additional pictures here.

The Erdem show was all about juxtapositions. Florals done in deep, dark colors, black leather tops paired with delicate lace skirts, black rubber mixed with flower prints, sheer lace with conservative cuts… These juxtapositions made a collection that was simultaneously dramatic but fun and girly.

My favorite part? Aside from the prints, which are always divine, I especially enjoyed the tweed pumps and booties – they even came in brightly colored suedes and floral prints.

Want more pictures of this show? You can see them here and check out the runway video at Vogue.com.

The House of Holland showed a fun, Mod-inspired, wildly colorful collection full of very wearable pieces. There were the bright stripes, lace-up platform booties, little caps, zigzag prints, gorgeous houndstooth done in demure wools, shimmery satins and even on tights, colorful bell bottoms and my favorite, the adorable suits and shift dresses.

I absolutely adored Christopher Bailey’s Pre-Fall 2012 show so I had high expectations for his Fall 2012 collection, expectations that I must say were met quite well. This Burberry Prorsum show was just as wearable as the Pre-Fall collection, but with a bit of a country twist. Lots of warm, thick fabrics like wool, cashmere, velvet, corduroy and tweed, paired with lighter, colorful extras and accessories.

Some of the highlights: the blouse & pencil skirt combos, great stripes, amazing tailoring, draping & ruffles, gorgeous outerwear, dramatic pockets, colorful, thin belts, oversized handbags & lace-up booties. For the men Christopher showed amazing double-breasted coats, skinny ties, studded leather gloves, polka dot button-downs and newsboy caps. Too cute!

P.S. The bow belts were back! 🙂

You can also see more beautiful shots from Garance Dore here and from The Sartorialist here.

Alice Temperley described her Fall 2012 show’s theme as “Polished Folk” and the Temperley London collection didn’t disappoint, it was filled with bohemian flares and fun hippie detailing. The ribbon belts, fur hats, suede ankle boots and demure gloves were worn with marbled knits, flowy blouses & brocade A-line skirts, colorful crochet and lace day dresses and velvet & metallic print pantsuits.

A video of the show can be see here or you can see more pictures here.

The knitwear design house, Pringle of Scotland showed a beautiful and eclectic collection that included bold & colorful separates, suiting, outerwear and delicately draping dresses worn with platform Oxford pumps or buckle-adorned combat boots that somehow still managed to be chic.

I especially liked the separates, they were very down to earth, something you could easily imagine pulling out of your closet and mix with other pieces to put together the perfect look.

Curious to see how what looks the London Fashion Week designers put down the runways during their shows last year? Take a trip down memory lane and check out London Fashion Week Spring 2012.

Be sure to keep an eye out for Moi Contre La Vie’s Giveaway after Paris Fashion Week!

 

*** Please note that I do not advocate the use of fur in fashion and personally make an effort not to wear or carry fur, exotic skins or leather. I believe that in this day in age there are many beautiful alternatives to these products which are cruelty-free and should be utilized instead.

 

Photos from Style.com unless otherwise cited.

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Pre-Fall 2012 Collections: Part III

At long last, as promised, here is the third and final post covering the Pre-Fall 2011 Collections – Part I & Part II are available as well for your viewing pleasure.

The first word that popped into my mind when I surveyed the photographs of the BCBG Max Azaria Pre-Fall 2012 collection was clean. Clean color schemes, clean lines, clean accessorizing. The show was full of beautiful details, patterns, fabrics and accessories, but the pairings still managed to be clean. As only Max and Lubov Azria can do. I especially liked the inclusion of dramatic leather hippie-inspired fringed belts. (You can read what FabSugar has to say about the BCBG show here.)

Wide royal blue and black stripes - Check. Bright colored laced - Check. Pleats - Check. Sheer fabrics - Check. Hippie inspired fringe - Check. Kick @$$ heels - Check. And yet, this looks clean and polished, not busy and overwhelming. Perfection.

Chic black & white evening wear that manages to be simultaneously reminiscent of medieval fashion and utterly modern. Now that's a hard combination to manage!

 
As much as I adored watching stars like Emma Stone, Diane Kruger and Zoe Saldana on the red carpet in Francisco’s pastel, second-skin creations this past year, I gasped when I saw his Pre-Fall 2011 collection. While the minimalism he’s known for was still present, the thicker fabrics and darker colors paired with more structured looks took Calvin Klein to a whole new level this season. Blacks, greys and taupes with a splash of burnt orange, all done in heavy wools and leathers.
 

I predict that this dress will be VERY popular this season. It has a cut and a color that are both incredibly flattering and the ribbing and pleat details are perfect for the red carpet. Can't you just picture Eva Mendes looking stunning in this at a movie premiere?

A belted black two piece look in wool and leather with pleats and a braided belt paired with peeptoe platforms, this could almost be mistaken for Michael Kors if the exquisite details and tailoring didn't scream Francisco Costa.

 
I’ve been a fan of Temperley London since I saw her Fall 2008 Ready-To-Wear show, which I thought was really fun, edgy and well done, sort of biker chick meets supermodel. That show had a much harder edge to it than this latest Temperley London show – hot off her successes of the past year (heard of Pippa Middleton, have you?) she presented a show with a more demure, high society vibe. Pearls, sequins, Swiss-dot tights, headbands, silk blouses, pewter rose belt buckles, A-line skirts, satin evening gowns, leather leggings, opera-length gloves… It was quite a collection (Emma Roberts’s holiday look was inspired by this show).
 

It's hard to imagine making a cheetah print look proper and ladylike. I guess the key is a shift silhouette, stockings, white driving gloves and a multi-strand pearl necklace.

This dress is beautifully done, with the buttons and subtle panelling of the fabric it is anything but plain. And the styling is perfect with the tights, pumps and belt.

 
While a lot of the shows that I’ve reviewed thus far have showcased separates, outerwear and dresses that the “average woman” could see herself wearing, there were also a number of houses that focused on a very different, very specific purpose. The red carpet. With the award season almost upon on, Badgle Mischka proved that they’re ready to dress their A-list clients for all their events in the coming months. The collection was on the conservative side, but in a classic, old-school glamour kind of way.
 

I love, love, love long-sleeved evening gowns. They're the height of elegance in my mind, evoking Hollywood's Golden Age - Greta Garbo, Katharine Hepburn, Claudette Colbert, Bette Davis, Jean Harlow, Rita Hayworth, Marlene Dietrich...

This gown has Julianne Moore's name all over it. It's elegant and understated, but the color and the details at the shoulders & chest keep it interesting. I say hem it a little, add a slit up on side, throw on jeweled sandals and add a serious gold cuff.

 
Monique Lhuillier is another designer who has recently expanded her repertoire to include more separates and daywear, but who still specializes in red carpet statement gowns. This collection was mostly black, white and grey, with standout splashes of cobalt blue. Florals and lace were the primary patterns and there was very little styling or jewelry, the dresses were left to stand alone.
 

I don't love the peekaboo hemlines that were all over last season, but somehow the demure length and the gorgeous lace and neckline of this dress make it work.

Interesting necklines are a great way to distinguish yourself in a sea of beautiful women in beautiful dresses. I like the combination of the halter, the belted waist and the slit, it makes the gown formal, but still youthful. This would be a good one for choice for one of the younger stars this season.

How much does this look like one of the gowns that Grace Kelly wore when she was still gracing the red carpets of Hollywood?

 
Seriously, look!
 
 
 
Brazilian Carlos Miele’s Pre-Fall 2011 collection was entirely made up of red carpet worthy dresses, from movie premieres to the Oscars, he had something for everyone.
 

This is a beautiful gown that appears very simple but is anything but. I like that its one-shouldered but not a Goddess gown, I think the small skirt-like extra fabric at the waist helps. I also like the ribbon detailing at the hems.

I'm going to go ahead and guess that this print was inspired by Monet's Water Lilies series. What I love about this column gown is the unusual line along the bust, it's neither a traditional sweetheart neckline nor a strictly asymmetrical one.

 
Another Oscar-season regular is Naeem Khan, whose Pre-Fall 2012 collection included floor length gowns in black & white, florals, sequins and shimmering pastels. I was especially impressed by the printed dresses and the intricate beading. All of these dresses could be styled to be perfect for the red-carpet with some killer heels and tons of costume jewelry.
 

Paging Studio 54. Paging Studio 54. Everything about this gown, from the cut to the beading to the geometric belt, is calling for a dramatic, statuesque woman to make it hers. I hope Iman finds it!

Gorgeous beading adds a little something extra to this floral gown, which is really well done with its deep v-neck and skinny patent leather belted waist.

 
FabSugar has a final round-up of the looks 
 
Photos from Style.com unless otherwise cited.
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