Outfit: Vivienne Westwood Inspirations #1 – Corsets Over Volume

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I am often asked what kinds of things inspire my outfits, how I come up with ideas for styling and also what the hell am I wearing! I tend to divide my clothes into two categories: Westwood and everything else. I mix all my clothes up, designer with vintage and high street, Chanel with Zara. Everything except the Westwood. I just think Westwood clothes, no matter which label they are on, compliment each other better. I will occasionally wear a Westwood jacket or pair of shoes with ‘other’ outfits, but in the main I keep them separate. There is no real reason for this other than my own folly, I am just partial to the full on Westwood look.

I obviously wasn’t born with a hard-drive of Vivienne Westwood info, after I first discovered the designer I delved into the history and current brand, learning more and more. One of the things which really added to my love of the brand was they styling. I would go into the shop as much to see the the girls who worked there, styled to perfection, as much as too see the merchandise. This was far too many years than I care to admit too now, but at the time my three favourites all had really distinct looks showing how diverse the brand could be. The beautiful glossy look books produced for each collection really showcased the clothes, in the days before Style.com they were a much longed for glimpse at the runway shows.

In a celebration of Westwood and how I have been inspired by the wonderful styling I will be doing a series of posts featuring outfits based around lookbook images. The first is from Anglomania AW 2009. I have loved this corset to death since I bought it, I have it in plain black too. Dame Viv corsets are a signature of course, but what would you wear a corset belt with? A slim fitted dress perhaps? A blouse and pencil skirt maybe? Least likely a great big, poofy taffeta frock but that was the stamp all over Anglo AW09 and it is one I’ve been a firm fan of myself. The lookbook was quite restrained, using classic burnt orange tights and black heels as a back drop and letting the beautifully shaped garments speak for themselves. Here I decided to play it up a bit more and clash tartans and baubles for fun autumn look.

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Details: All Vivienne Westwood – Anglomania dress, Red Label tartan belt, Gold Label yellow leather Bag boots, Japanese license tights, old 90’s pearl drop choker, Pearly Queen 3D Orb, gold diamante bone brooch, AR badge.

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Anglomania AW 2009 Lookbook

Outfit: Deep Sky

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Wearing: vintage Vivienne Westwood Deep Sky blazer, Red Label blouse, Anglomania Kung Fu pants, Japanese label socks, Special custom order Gold Label Animal toe 3-straps in green canvas

Just posing a little Instagram (@SuperElevated) snap of this outfit since I couldn’t wait to show you these new shoes! Special custom order Animal Toe 3-Straps from Worlds End, I will do anther post with all the details about them next. I actually ordered them back in May planning on them being my summer shoes but due to some problem they only just came. With the weather turning I wasn’t sure I’d get chance to wear them now but luckily we are having┬á a mini Indian summer so I pulled them on with socks and rolled up my trousers. Worn with my precious Deep Sky blazer <3 For something similar on a budget the Ash Fiona have the same chunky buckle feel and would look amazing with trousers and socks. The Ash Heidi are a great option too, also in canvas with three statement buckles, these would be best worn with dresses for a night out. You could work either look with a nice fitted blazer, I love stripes and they will be big for next season.

Exhibition: My Favourite Shoe, Westfield London

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My Favourite Shoe

Have you ever wondered what inspires designers in creating their new collections? Ever wondered which shoes of their own design have a special place in the designers hearts? Or even what their work spaces look like?

The ‘My Favourite Shoe’ exhibition currently at Westfield, Shepard’s Bush, London (due to tour soon), delves into the designers psyche. Asking popular designers Camilla Skovgaard, Joanne Stoker, Mr Hare, Sophie Cox and Atlanta Weller what their design process involves and how they come up with such unique ideas. The Shoe Collection at Northampton Museums & Gallery (NMAG) is home to the largest archive of shoes in the world, naturally it is a place of inspiration to designers and students. In the exhibition curated as part of the museums ‘Cinderella Syndrome project- Displaying shoes in museums‘, each designer has chosen a shoe from the NMAG archive along side one from their own collections to illustrate their favourite shoes.

Situated in the luxe The Village in the shopping plaza the monolithic display cases, designed to resemble the designers desks, stand proud and eye catching. Peer inside and discover shoes from the most sculptural to the most comfortable! Read the designer bio’s and interviews and even take part in the ‘photo booth’ where you can record a snap of your own favourite shoes. A fascinating and fun exhibition, but be quick as it is only there 11-29th September.

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For full information visit the Westfield website “‘NMAG presents My Favourite Shoe’

and the “NMAG information page.

LFW SS14: Kilian Kerner Red Carpet &99 Red Balloons

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‘God Save the Queen’

Kilian Kerner Red Carpet Collection SS14

“I want your t-shirt – will you give it to me?” Were the immortal words spoke to the young Kilian by his icon pop-star Nena. After spotting him wearing a customised t-shirt not once but twice at her concerts she finally convinced him to design some clothes for her. That was where it all started and now in his 16th collection the designer is going from strength to strength. The grand Adelphi suite at the Waldorf was the perfect setting for the SS14 Red Carpet collection. Standing beneath the ornate clock, a dress worth of any Cinderella. In wisps of white clouds and glints of gold; vibrant orange, purple and blue stripes; mauve sequins spilling around the floor the collection was presented. Wonderful, dramatic dresses as expected but also very wearable pieces such as the cropped biker jacket, pencil skirt and peplum top. A truly beautiful collection to make any woman feel a million dollars.

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LFW SS14: Footwear & Millinery Exhibitions

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Deliciously dark and edgy footwear from Liam Fahy

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Quirky, fun and a little bit cheeky, footwear by Sophia Webster

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Alien-like headpieces by Maiko Takeda, would you believe they are soft to touch

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Exquisitely crafted hats and headpieces by Mich Dulce

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LFW SS14: Sister by Sibling – Stepford & Sequins

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Sister by Sibling SS14

Stepford wives getting their groove on to The Shangri-Las BOOM BOOM. Chanel tweeds, prim twin sets smashed together with Barbie, boudoirs and a little bit of beachwear. The result, a fabulous riot of colour, texture and fun. From slogan emblazoned sweaters ‘Happy’ and ‘Lead Sister’ to floral sequin embellished bomber jackets, almost indecent denim hot-pants to pastel gingham pencil skirts, prom dresses to bedroom mules this collection had it all, and put it all together in a rather scrumptious way. The look was all about huge, great big backcombed, wild hair with extra thick black eyeliner, sexy rather than proper. Stand out pieces were the aqua green sequin rosette bomber jacket, trademark neon leopard print tees and pastel pencil skirts in over-sized gingham.

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Whispers were created FROW side with Roland Mouret sitting cosy with Natalie Massenet of Net-a-Porter and the original Sugar Babes line up Keisha, Mutya and Siobhan.

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I say “Whazzat?”
And he say… “Sophisticated Boo
m Boom”
It’s been long overdue
Sophisticated Boom Boom
We’ve been needing something new
Sophisticated Boom Boom
Now stand up straight and tall
Like your back’s against the wall
Take two steps forward and shake your hips
Boom Boom

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Click to enlarge

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LFW SS14: Orla Kiely – French Girl Scout Safari

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Think French, think Girl Scouts, think safari, think 60’s and you may just catch a glimpse inside the wonderful world that Orla Kiely created this season.

Orla always puts on the most delightful presentations, everybody gets excited about them because nobody can ever second guess them. Last season was a secretary pool, before that a tea dance. The one thing we can be sure of is that we will be pushed like Alice down the rabbit hole into the magical world only Orla can create. If we are lucky we might emerge the other side wearing one or two pieces from her glorious collections. That’s really what stands out with an Orla Kiely collection, it is very wearable. Everyone wants to wear her pieces no matter their age or style there is something that will truly delight. This season the Girl Scouts climbed out of the tiny hatch and strode off equipped with oversized exploring paraphernalia such as butterfly nets, binoculars, jam jars and magnifying glasses. They darted past rhinos and zebra to the most fashionable campsite you ever did see, Orla Kiely trademark print cushions around the campfire? Yes please. The wonderful 60’s influence was seen on mini dresses and tiny little shorts suits, punctuated with statement pockets and big brass buttons. The prints were a riot of┬á elongated orange giraffes, rhino polka dots and little tiny pink lions. Abstract rhinos adorned the new binocular case ‘Huckleberry’ bags, whilst the same angular technique was used to create tiger and panda face purses. Pink and navy berets topped of shiny, luscious locks and knee socks accentuated the chunky clunky shoes. Oh those shoes? A collaboration with Clarks that will be available from February 2014, more on that nearer the time, but start saving ladies. As if we couldn’t adore Orla any more, the designer provided guests with a steady flow of Um Bongo. Coat check your heart at the door, this lady has taken it for sure.

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Shoes Ora Kiely with Clarks, Beauty Florrie White with Bobbi Brown, Nails Nail Girls

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LFW SS14: Eudon Choi – A Forgotten Princess

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Eudon Choi SS14 – Deokhye

Deokhye was a Korean princess. She was born in 1912 the only daughter of King Gojong during the annexation of Korea by Japan. Sent away to be educated in Japan and later forced into a politcal marrage she lived 38 years of her life in exhile. Her story almost forgotten, Eudon Choi not only celebrates her memory but draws inspiratin from the tragic tale.

The exotic Asia floral prints morph and melt, echoing Deokhye’s pain. The delicate lacework represents gentle femininity. Merged with Choi’s trademark masculine shapes the strength of Deokhye is not forgotten.

The models were given wet-look hair, sweap back, mermaids who had been cast ashore. Their skin shone in dewy highlights. Sculptural headpieces by Piers Atkinson made from wood and perspex, pagoda-like in their grandeur, Rorschach in their symmetry.

With a colour palette of pinks and navy, beautifully clashing prints of stripes and florals and the prettiest Guipure lace this was a collection that will appeal to the most modern of princesses. Life itself can be dramatic, tragic and painful but there will always be a way to see the beauty in it.

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LFW SS14 Micro Trend: 90’s Jewellery Earcuffs & Chokers

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Chokers and earcuffs on the street and runway at Kilian Kerner

With the upsurge of the 90’s Grunge trend it was a no-brainer that other trends of the decade would crop up. Having spend my teenage years stuck wearing Doc Martins and oversized plaid it wasn’t a trend I welcomed. However I seem to have found myself revisiting days of yore, albeit in a more modern way. Earcuffs back in the day were little silver rings, this season they are huge ear covering things, bejewelled and in your face. Chokers are back too, anyone else religiously wear a black velvet ribbon like TV character Blossom? For 2013 leather is the choker of choice with metal facets.

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My own 90’s jewellery foray, earcuffs and rings from Topshop, choker from Charie may, ear & bow hairband Mich Dulce, mohair jumper TK Maxx, Nail varnish Chanel Blue Boy

What do you think about these trends?

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