LFW- S/S 2011 Double Whammy

Didn't really do Fashion Week per se this season... was completely worn out and ill and was thankful for the weekend rest to be honest. That said I did attend a few bits and pieces and went along with the Editor of Volt to see Hannah Marshall. The LFW site had, had a bit or re-jig which we all had a good moan about in the ever increasing meandering que. 

We were lucky enough to have a double whammy of Felder & Felder followed by Hannah Marshall.  

Rock Chic indeed, after managing to hold onto the press release for nearly a week I have now lost it typically, but Felder & Felder was back to true form, sexy biker chick and if I remember rightly the models walked out to Coco Sumners version of Born to be wiiiiiiild!

Quite 80's, quite Madannona, figure hugging dresses such as 'the amber dress' which open the show (would love to know if this was named after the synonymous Amber Rose, who was there and she was spreading across lfw like wildfire) F&F had a Slightly more feminine vibe with torn tutu's and splashings of vibrant colour mixed in with there tough leathers and black killer dresses.

The front row was pretty impressive: the unbelievably talented Rankin (who I am in total awe of), the stunningly elegant Erin O'connor, Paloma Faith, Gemma Cairney of 1xtra fame, Shingai of The Noisettes and of course Coco Sumner.

Not sure if this completely revolutionary but Rankin's film interlude between the shows was sensuous inspiring and built the setting for the opening for Hannah Marshall's collection perfectly. I thought the video showed Rankin at his best and captured the unbelievable female form, in a innocently dark motion.  I do believe this is setting the precedence and fashion film will indeed be used far more in future catwalk productions. 

see a snippet below or watch in full at Rankin.co.uk 


FNO:: 'The Painted Lady' @ Pull & Bear

This year I finally got to experience VOGUE Fashion's Night Out... and wow what a night. I was lucky enough to accompany the extraordinarily talented Belinda (Modern day vintage hair specialist & founder of The Painted Lady Salon, London) to the Pull and Bear event. Belinda was working her magic, styling the guest to perfection including the blogger extraordinaire and window styling battler of the night Alexis Knox. See some of the snaps of the night are below:

 Amazing feedback from those lucky enough to get a sneaky peek at the exclusive pre-view of Belinda's debut book 'Style Me Vintage' - Not yet released but avaliable to pre order from Play.com, WHSmith and Amazon

Belinda herself in the styling chair. 

The models are ready and waiting for the styling challengers Alexis Knox and Pelayo Díaz to do there thang!  

Battle underway...

The finished look

Every bit the modern day Marilyn

Alexis Knox with her Victory rolls, although you can't see she had the incredible crocodile sole Viktor & Rolf boots on!

The lovely ladies who had a hair makeover courtesy of Belinda at Fashion night out- Pull and Bear



‘Excuse me, so sorry to bother you, but do you know where Machine-A is?’ we ask politely, peering inquisitively into a both beautiful and quirky boutique, admiring the top hats as lampshades that droop down over the lady’s desk. She stands up to point us up Berwick Street in the right direction, ‘Machine-A is the one with the really interesting windows and the very cool customers’ she explains to us. Turned out to be an accurate description as we soon stumble across the thriving crowds of people, spilling onto the West End street.

Having encountered some rather bizarre characters (not in a good or positive way), our adventurous journey to the store was finally rewarded by being greeted by much more fantastical and unusual characters, however this time it was most definitely in a positive way. The fashion pack had come out in storm with an eclectic mix of styles, the atmosphere was buzzing, with everyone in a party zone thanks to DJ Nova Dando thumping out the soundtrack for the evening.

Substantial amount of support was shown to Dominic Jones (hat-trick winner of the BFC’s NewGen prize may we just add!) and his new collaboration/commission for concept store Machine-A. Jones, who is probably more commonly known for his highly regarded jewellery line with friend/business partner Alice Dellal, has approached this collaboration from a different angle. Sure, his jewellery and fiercely restrictive leather garments were hanging on most of the walls, yet the impressive talking point was his inventive window instillation.  Rotating flora framed in an oversized kaleidoscopic disco ball of mirrors may sound slightly disjointed, but is all part of his deep love for the work of the World Land Trust, which protects and preserves some of the worlds most beautiful and endangered environments. As natural forms inspires Dominic’s spectrum of work, from his silver and gold animal teeth to claws jutting off rings and neck pieces, it is no surprise that his t-shirt design captures a scene of almost a volcanic spirit. With a meandering marbled triangle of exotic plants and trees, the tees not only create awareness for the charitable cause of the international World Land Trust but also commemorates WLT’s 21st year of fighting for conservation of endangered habitats across the globe, including those of the Atlantic Rainforests of Northern Argentina.

The Dominic Jones limited edition t-shirt is available exclusively from the Machine-A store, with a whopping 50% of all proceeds from t-shirt sales going to the World Land Trust. The t-shirt retails at £50.00.

Text & Images by moi. Original Post can be viewed on Volt Cafe 

Open Prize for video painting - Painting pictures with motion

Valentina Ferrandes ‘Council Estate’

Life is likened to that of a glorious masterpiece, shaped by the spectrum of hues of our everyday environment. Therefore the only logical process for the art world to take is that of motion. Video Painting is a relatively new concept devised from the psychological works of Hilary Lawson who published his theory of closure in 2001. His notions, that the world is open and that we close that openness with thought and language has changed the perspective view of openness with art becoming a main expression of this.

Video painting is just that, creating a vision using film as a canvas; key conventions is that the camera is motionless on a fixed standpoint with no dialogue or sound. The process is uninhabited and pure with all content remaining natural to its original form, free from any constructed editing or manipulation of the image.

The innate freedom constructed in the process of video painting has therefore attracted many devotes of this technique, including the artists Sanchita Islam, William Raban, Isabelle Inghillieri, Nina Danino and Tina Keane whom gathered regularly to showcase to each other their current footage. In 2006 The Open Gallery saw this as a great opportunity to offer such artists a platform to enable them to engage with a wider audience.

In 2009 the Open Gallery launched the inaugural Open Prize for video painting, inviting submissions from UK based young artists with a view to showing a selection of entries in a major exhibition in 2010.

The Open Prize does what it says on the tin, the doors are ajar to anyone up for the challenge of competitively presenting their visual flair, and the Open Gallery was not short of talent, receiving in excess of 300 entries. With such a great reception it clearly shows that video painting is a creative medium that is completely in tune with today’s instantaneous society.

With what can only be imagined as an impossible task, the submissions were whittled down to a final ten which where then given the exceptional opportunity to be exhibited at the gallery as part of a series of pieces which documented the development of video painting since its origins just under a decade ago.

‘The submissions for the inaugural Open Prize are the latest addition to the unfolding development of video painting. They are startling in their variety, strength and excitement within the medium of the video painting. I have no doubt that the video painting story has hardly begun.’ Will Smith, Director, the Open Gallery.

Anthony Haden-Guest provided the distinct forewords to accompany the exhibition, likening the collection to ‘The DNA of a Movement’. With such a varied breadth of work, often with abstraction and underlying themes running through, it requires an open mind to decode these short, filmatic experiences.

Jasmina Metwaly managed to scope the main prize for her piece, Crucifixion. Her piece expressed Sinai’s desert-land surroundings with strong attachments to religious and sometime extreme beliefs, yet documented without a time frame in her attempt to define timelessness. Jasmina will receive funding and future exhibitions with the Open Gallery.

If you believe you visually and conceptually have what it takes, the submissions for the Open Prize 2011 will be invited from the 1st October 2010.

Robert Dixon ‘Untitled’

Rita Ribas ‘Gathering’

Olwen Coughlan ‘Acedia’

Michael Lightborne ‘Elevator’

Marc Atkinson ‘Revealing’

Alexandra Hughes ‘The End of August’

Original Text by moi. previously published on Volt Cafe

Once upon a time- Story of Lola

Once upon a time there was a girl called Lola, based in epicentre of London’s Brick  Lane, she epitomises utility luxe to a key.  The Story of Lola is infact a novel brand that has just been launched that partners femine chic with a laid-back tone. Quirky and draped silhouettes lends itself to easily be transformed from day to evening, with a touch of lippy Lola is ready to go.       

Based around the admirable ‘girl about town’, the one you see yourself hopelessly starring at in pure desire for her whole ‘get-up’, unbeatable style and radiating persona, and the imaginable wardrobe to die for… that girl is most definitely the embodiment of Lola. She has constant ever evolving look that is off-duty but still raking up the style credentials adorning herself in the favourite grey marl roped hoddy or a gorgeous roughly pleated harem trousers, accessorising with cute low–slung floral neck scarf or an edgy snood with some chains, changing the look and feel instantaneously a story of never ending possibilities. 

Story of Lola is available from FashAddict, 164 Brick Lane, London E1. 020 7247 9220

Original Text by moi. previously published on Volt Cafe


Burberry’s Autumn/Winter 10 interactive digital campaign,shot by Mario Testino

Christopher Bailey and Burberry’s creative army are a force to be reckoned with. Following on from their successful 3D worldwide screenings, they have now developed a completely unique virtual advertising campaign to sit alongside the well received Autumn Winter  2010 collection. 

True to form the exclusive full British cast can now be explored at the click of a mouse from every perceivable angle.  It enables you have the power so-to-speak to flip the usual fixed or print media based advert, diving in to the full Burberry experience almost losing yourself in the daydream that you are rubbing shoulders with the likes of Rosie Huntington Whiteley,Douglas Booth, Gwilyn Gold and Rory Cottram.

This campaign protects our authentic and timeless heritage and evolves the modern way in which we communicate that. The Burberry campaigns have always been characterized by the dynamic British cast and I wanted to express the individuality and the energy behind each of their different creative expressions. Burberry was founded on innovation and outerwear and I want anyone who sees the campaign not just to see images, but to feel a part of what we have created; connecting people through technology, music, the collections, the attitude, and the emotion captured.
Christopher Bailey, Burberry Chief Creative Director

Christopher Bailey is not afraid of the moving digital era, infact he embraces it. Despite Burberry’s extensive and rich heritage, established in 1856, the notion of complimenting this with creative technology may seem like a great nonsensical leap but it combines perfectly.

A visually personal and direct encounter the innovative technology based campaign has you tumbling 180° head over heels for the wearable aviator outerwear enfused collection.

The Motion Responsive video campaign is available on all Burberry digital platforms: Burberry.com, Facebook, You Tube & Twitter.

The Wonderful Mr Carter

As promised (although slightly delayed) here is my full interview with the eccentrically suave David Carter. Propped on the stairs while the crowd partied away we discussed his whimsical inspiration behind the grand occasion (see below) and his journey into his own eccentric world of interiors...

David Carter Q&A

Firstly how did this unique collaboration with Jacques come about?

They contacted me, I think because obviously I own 40 winks, which has had lots of amazing press, ‘The most reputable hotel in the world’ according to German Vogue, ‘sexiest boutique hotel in London’ – Grazia. Not only that but we put on lovely, lovely events which also get fab press. So I think what they were interested in, they wanted someone who was going to be able to, not only design and create something that is really fabulous to look at but also to generate and create lovely experiences for people when they actually came aswell. So it was a combination of design but also the content, we have lots of lovely things going on here from Oliver who is dj-ing with a wind-up gramophone, we’ve got benefit cosmetics doing amazing make over’s, we’ve got a fanatic dressing up box…well a whole room, of dressing up downstairs, wonderful cigarette pearls and bell pots. It is more than just putting on ‘A’ party; it’s creating a whole world. For me with my work everything has got to have integrity. Literally from the moment people arrive they have to register with the concierge and book in, collect a key to their room, an imaginary room, everything flows from that, and present those ideas and so on. They were very good clients in the sense that I had a lot of freedom to create what I believed was going to work here, which is a  kind of just a lovely fairytale experience for people.  

I think it is…

Thank you.  

A girly sanctuary I can’t complain, but why not involve the lads in this pop up townhouse?

Jacque as a cider brand, because of the fruits, it’s not a kind of scrumpy cider go down the pub and get pissed. It is a actually as brand that developed and marketed specifically at girls in their 20’s, the brand has been developed with girls in mind. 

Obviously tonight with it being the launch party night, there is lots of men mingling in as guests, but the profile of guests over the next few weeks is almost exclusively girls. It is an event principally aimed at girls, designed for girls, I don’t think there will be many boys wanting to dress up in girls clothes, or have their make-up done or eyelashes done by benefit but we know a lot of girls will want to do that, it comes from the ethos of the brand.

What is your attraction to beautiful Townhouses?  

As an interior designer I have worked on all sorts of buildings, I mean I have worked on 1960’s bungalows in the past, I have done French château’s and lots of very grand places. At the moment I am doing a huge country house up in Northampshire, a hotel in Vienna and about to start on a seaside house in Brittany, I do all sorts of different things, big apartments and so forth.  

I live in a Queen Anne townhouse, but there is no, oh it is not a townhouse I am not going to do that. When we were looking for a venue for Jacques, we wanted to have an elegant townhouse hotel, something that was manageable, rather than some huge space. To find the right balance, they knew 40 winks, which only has two bedrooms, they loved that idea. One of the most talked about, written about hotels in the world and it is in Stepney Green East London and has only got two bedrooms! That as a concept you can see is brilliant and it worked very well as a template for this because the logistics of looking after lots of guests would have been quite complicated. At the same time  it is still lovely to have people that are able to stay here as well of the majority of people that get to come and have the evening experiences.   

40 winks hotel, how do you ever get the guests to vacate their rooms? What was the concept behind this venture?

My house, for over 11years now has been one of London’s top fashion and celebrity locations, and every single week I’ve got fantastic, amazing photoshoots going on there and for years I’ve had photographers, stylists, models and magazine editors asking if they could stay.  I have a lot of people flying in from New York, Milan or Paris to shoot in my house. For years people have been pestering me about, because they love the house, I get on really well with them and they love being in east London for them that’s a really cool place. As most of the time they would be put up in really boring but smart hotels, in you know knightsbridge or Chelsea or something. 

So about a year and half ago I just thought why not lets do it, and launched 40winks in March of 2009 during London fashion week. Innocently thinking I may get one or two  people staying a month, like the people that may like to shoot there and then the press just  kept building and building and building and it just got fuller and fuller and fuller. I mean now we have to turn away some of the most amazing people, like I will get an email from Marie Claire France saying the editor would like to come and stay and I hesitantly have to write back, On these days I can’t fit them in, or the design directors of Burberry, amazing people that we cannot fit in.

The hotel is principally aimed at people that work in fashion and the arts, it’s very particular, we are not trying to appeal to everyone. People come because it is different and is genuinely different; it’s not some kind of cynical whatever. There is no room service, no bell hops, no restaurant, so people are just coming for the lovely ambiance and the spirit of the house, which is really creative because it is quirky, mad, beautiful and seductive, I think that is why it has been so successful. People really do love it and what is interesting… people who plan their trip to London around the availability of the hotel, which is really amazing, and that is just not normal.

That is what my work is all about I want to emotionally connect with people, I think people feel an emotional connection with the space, all the events that we do, like bedtime story nights, life drawing evenings and Tart.  They are about creating lovely, lovely experiences for people.  We don’t do it to make money, I mean we don’t really make any money from it but we do create lovely experiences that are memorable.

I mean we had tart last Saturday and we had people come all the way from Bristol for it, saying it was the best event we ever, ever been to, ever! It is that kind of warmth, that warm feeling people get because we delivered something special to them.  
For the Jacques Townhouse I noticed that part of your inspiration came from one of my personal favourite photographers Tim Walker, what is it that attracts you to his work? And where would you state your other areas of inspiration came from?

I am a big fan too.

I think I have sort of been described as the john Galliano of the interior design world. One of the reasons I love John’s work so much is because he is not embarrassed or afraid to dip into different parts the crafts and cherry pick a little bit of Marie Antoinette a little bit of Japanese 17th century and mix everything up.  I do that with my work as an interior designer, we all sort of rummage around and pick things up. It is about taking lots of different things mixing them all up and creating something new with that.

This is not a whole homage to Tim Walker but is evoking the spirit and the playfulness that is inherent in Tim’s work that has always been there.  I have been an interior designer for 18years, one of my first ever jobs which was called ‘Driller Thriller’ it was this mad dentist surgery in Cherbourg in France it tromploid teeth going around it was completely zany.  For me humour and doing something different is very much apart of what I do, of course there are overlaps as it about quirkiness and playfulness and having fun. Because the things we see in magazines or the spaces we live with, we have got to enjoy! I am very serious about my work I am not irresponsible about it and I care deeply and passionate about it.  I think my work appeals to a different type of audience it is not academic or architectural, it is about the celebration of life really.

Tell us a bit about your background? Where and how did your love of interior design develop?

A flat I had in Islington, a friend of mine who is a photographer came round to take a few pics and on spec he sent them in to World of Interiors. They phoned up literally the next day, ‘we love it’ we want to photograph it and it was on the front cover. Min Hogg who is the legendary Editor-in-Chief then invited me into to have lunch after it had been published and She said, ‘David, you’re a genius, you should be an interior designer. We’ll publish anything you do.’

That was sort of how I started, it was really Min Hogg and her support and her encouragement sort of saying you have got a talent. I have taken on over the years lots of young people who have very little experience who I believe in and give them the right kind of encouragement to develop and practice your art and a platform to do that.  

On your online portfolio your work is split into either Light or Dark. Is this an intentional design process? Or is it more organic and the work slowly fits into each

Not really it’s sort of intuitive. What I naturally want to do is to create juxtapositions. I love the idea of going from dark spaces to light; everything works better because of the contrast. And also for me as a human being for me dark spaces are really womb like, you can curl up and feel very safe but also love bright ethereal spaces where you want to dance. I need all that, as human beings we are not just one thing we are everything. When I naturally designed the house here  (the Jacques  pop-up townhouse) we have all these very light rooms upstairs but downstairs dark and cosy to me that is what makes it more interesting and real.

With Thanks to David Carter http://www.alacarter.com   http://www.40winks.org