Amelia’s Magazine | Valentines Day: Gifts and Ideas


Illustration by Matilde Sazio

“This song is about fucking up against the wall, unhealthyJoan Wasser announces to introduce “Hard white wall”, a track from her second album To Survive at her Barbican gig. Never the shrinking violet, Joan is standing in an all-in-one fitted black leather number, slashed at the back, as the spotlights converge on her small frame. Last Sunday was the seventh time I have seen Joan As Police Woman in London.

The first time I saw Joan play was on a balmy summer’s evening in 2006 at now defunct The Spitz in Spitalfields, which in my opinion, used to put on some of the best gigs in London. The venue was at capacity that night and the air inside was clammy to the point where every surface I touched, whether it was a table or wall, seemed to be coated with a film of sweat. Fresh from a tour supporting Guillemots, Joan took the stage in a silver metallic floor length gown and wowed the audience with her electric solo set. No big stage productions, no fancy costume changes, not even a band; just Joan with her powerful, soulful vocals, Korg keyboard and guitar. I am certain that she gained some lifelong fans that night, of which I am one.

The truth is my enthusiasm for Joan extends beyond just liking her records and appreciating her live performances. There’s something about her music – in the same vein as Antony and the Johnsons, Rufus Wainwright, Cat Power and Regina Spektor – which deeply resonates with me. Her sound is raw, honest, pure and sung from the heart in a way which isn’t bland, overdone or contrived. The combination of her emotive vocals, attention to detail in the form of a subtle stroke of cymbal here and an echo of string instruments there, has had the power to reduce me to tears in the past (although I have been known to cry at most things!).

Over the years, Joan has seen me through the best and worst of times: she’s been the soundtrack to exciting train and coach journeys across South East Asia and South America as I have admired the ever-changing landscapes, accompanied me as I have trudged miserably into work on an overheated tube wedged up against some hairy obese man’s armpit, and comforted me through the pain of a relationship break-up where I often found myself lying kidney-bean shaped, feeling sorry for myself (on this last point, what I have learned is that boyfriends may come and go, but if you discover a good artist, they have an unparalleled reliance. Joan has consistently delivered the goods since her first album and that Spitz gig in 2006, which is far more than what can be said of any of my recent relationships).

A multi-instrumentalist who flits effortlessly from piano to guitar to violin, Joan has worked and performed with the likes of Antony and the Johnsons, Rufus Wainwright, Lou Reed, Nick Cave and Elton John to name but a few. Much is made of the fact that she was the girlfriend of the luminous late-Jeff Buckley when he died, whose “Everybody Here Wants You” track is rumoured to be inspired by her, but for Joan to be defined by this alone is grossly unfair. The recognition that she deserves should be based purely on her own talent of epic proportions.

In the same vein as Antony and Rufus, much of Joan’s charm lies in her musical arrangements and unique which can be spine-tingling, served tender or harsh. Her new album, The Deep Field unfurls her lust for life and presents to us a more positive and upbeat individual compared to her earlier offerings, Real Life (2006) and To Survive (2008). In her own words, it is her “most open, joyous record” to date. Although the record is a departure from her more typical sombre sound, its essence is consistent with her previous work where she continues to demonstrate mood, depth, authenticity and sophisticated musical arrangements, which is a rare gem amongst some of the generic, non-memorable cack that passes for music today.

When I meet Joan for tea at the K-West Hotel in Shepherd’s Bush for our interview, she is friendly and upbeat, but appears visibly tired after having spent two days trekking across the UK to do promo work. I try to act cool and calm, but I am sweating like hell and on my way to the hotel, I slip over and land on my bottom to the amusement of two young teenage boys who break out into hysterics, which makes for a nice ice-breaker as I re-tell my story.

Wearing a brown leather jacket, a matching pair of trousers and a bright yellow t-shirt with “Strut ‘n’ Stuff” emblazoned across the front that she picked up from a thrift store, with her thick unkempt dark brown hair and flawless skin, Joan looks much younger than her years – much closer to 30 than 40.

As we sit on a comfy sofa in the library area of the hotel, Joan is oblivious to the two men in suits sitting behind us having a business meeting, who shoot a few disapproving glances in our direction as her voice gets progressively louder over the course of the interview. Speaking animatedly with a cup of herbal tea (she is trying to cut back on the coffee) in one hand and some neatly cut slices of apple in the other, Joan and I discuss life before Joan As Police Woman, the inspiration behind her new record, being in a better place and who’s house she’d most like to be a fly on the wall at, all in the good company of some soft-porn inspired saxophone music, playing softly in the background…

You trained as a classical musician and spent some time performing as one. What was the catalyst for you to explore being an alternative musician?
I always listened to different kinds of music as I was growing up and throughout my classical training. Classical music and non-classical music is all music so for me; it wasn’t all that big of a stretch making other music. I loved studying classical music, but I wasn’t really interested in making it my life’s work because I really wanted to make new music. There were also plenty of people who were better equipped at bringing new insight to the Beethoven violin concerto and I was not one of them. I loved learning the discipline behind that but pursuing a career in it didn’t interest me so when I moved to Boston to go to school I started playing in bands then because all my friends were in bands and the rest, I guess they say, is history.

You’ve been in several bands since you started out as a musician, including playing violin with Rufus Wainwright and Antony and the Johnsons, yet it as only in 2004 that you decided to front your own band. Why was there this delay?
Well I played violin exclusively for some time so I was mostly contributing to other peoples’ bands which I loved doing. I was playing an instrument that is like a voice in itself. You don’t write songs on the violin so I had no way of writing. I picked up a guitar in 1997 to see what it was like; I wanted to figure out if I could write songs and started writing. I put a band together called Black Beetle and wrote a few songs with them and I joined Antony’s band. At this stage, I was still playing with lots of people doing string arranging, but I also wanted to try out my voice which sounded horrible to me at the time. In the beginning you’re not used to what it sounds like and it doesn’t feel natural.

But surely you must have had reassurance from your friends that your voice is anything but horrible…
Well no one heard it. I started playing but I didn’t tell many people. I did get a lot of support from my friends which helped a lot, even if you think they’re lying because they love you.

So it was all very much about stepping slowly out of your comfort zone…
Yes, very much so. Antony had me open with one of his songs solo sometimes. It was a very anxious experience, especially as I was around a lot of astounding vocal performers. It was really scary, but I’m that kind of person where I jump into the deep end. It’s the only way to do things. I was making a record with Black Beetle that never got released, which was part of the learning process and then that band broke up in 2002 but I kept going; playing on my own and then I got a drummer to play with me and then Rufus asked me to go on tour and open for him and it just all went from there.

The first time I saw you perform was at The Spitz in 2006, and even back then you seemed to be a very natural performer. Has performing always been second nature to you?
At that point I felt a lot better. Opening for Rufus (Wainwright) was a good experience – you can’t really be opening for a crowd of total music lovers without getting your act together. Also, the fact that I come to a city that isn’t mine and tonnes of people show up. It makes you feel great; it makes you think: “OK – well at least I’m doing something right”.

When did you start recording the new album and what were your inspirations for the record?
I started by making a covers record which was fun for me to do. I wanted to get out of my head; my own songwriting. I think it really helped me to direct my songwriting on this record. I’m in a great place these days so I feel really open and joyful and I really wanted to get this across in the record. I first recorded seven songs that I had been writing since my last record; some of which I had been playing live, some I hadn’t been. I did that in March and completed those songs and surveyed the scene and decided what the record needed and then spent a few months writing five more songs to fill out the record the way I saw it in June and then mixed the whole thing at the end of last summer. It was really fun because I really had never done that before. Before I would record what I had and decide what it needed and then wrote that kind of song to fit the record so this time, the new approach was a fun exercise for me. I recorded at the same studio with the same producer and I feel very comfortable there; it makes me feel like I’m coming home. And then I just got all of my favourite musicians to contribute to the record. It was just an absolute glorious experience.

How do you think your sound has evolved since Real Life and To Survive?
It’s interesting because when I listen to my songs, I think all the time: “Where did that come from?” It’s beyond me. But I feel like I’m in a different place now…much more relaxed with myself in general. This is one of the treasures of spending more time alive because you get more comfortable with yourself and your surroundings.

You reached a milestone age last summer (Joan turned 40) – were there any anxieties?
I was really excited about it because I felt like it was a demarcation point of where I really didn’t have to give a shit about anything anymore. I never had to before, but I could just actually free myself of all the youth stuff because I have experienced a lot of stuff and it’s really been worth it even though things were very difficult at times. I feel really lucky that everyday feels a bit better than the last day because I’m determined to live a full life.

How did you celebrate?
I had a big party on my roof at home (just outside New York). It was really nice because I was there for the first time on my birthday and I really embraced it.

What advice would you give a 20 year old Joan and 30 year old Joan?
I would just reassure the 20 year old Joan that things are definitely going to get better – I did not think that then. At 30…I don’t know…the thing is I wouldn’t ever do anything differently. You have to learn everything the way you learn them, unfortunately sometimes.

What do you do to switch off?
I definitely have to exercise or I go crazy. I need that in my life so I do that a lot. I spend a certain amount of time with my friends being ridiculous and making jokes as terrible as possible. Oh and drinking way too much coffee.

Who’s house would you most like to be a fly on the wall at?
Prince…definitely! He’s the only person who I think: “What is he doing right now?”. Because you know it’s something weird…or fascinating. He’s just incredible; amazing.

Joan’s new album The Deep Field is out now on PIAS records and she is playing across the UK until 13 February.


Illustration by Matilde Sazio

“This song is about fucking up against the wall, discountJoan Wasser announces to introduce “Hard white wall”, adiposity a track from her second album To Survive at her Barbican gig. Never the shrinking violet, recipe Joan is standing in an all-in-one fitted black leather number, slashed at the back, as the spotlights converge on her small frame. Last Sunday was the seventh time I have seen Joan As Police Woman in London.

The first time I saw Joan play was on a balmy summer’s evening in 2006 at now defunct The Spitz in Spitalfields, which in my opinion, used to put on some of the best gigs in London. The venue was at capacity that night and the air inside was clammy to the point where every surface I touched, whether it was a table or wall, seemed to be coated with a film of sweat. Fresh from a tour supporting Guillemots, Joan took the stage in a silver metallic floor length gown and wowed the audience with her electric solo set. No big stage productions, no fancy costume changes, not even a band; just Joan with her powerful, soulful vocals, Korg keyboard and guitar. I am certain that she gained some lifelong fans that night, of which I am one.


Illustration by Darren Fletcher

The truth is my enthusiasm for Joan extends beyond just liking her records and appreciating her live performances. There’s something about her music – in the same vein as Antony and the Johnsons, Rufus Wainwright, Cat Power and Regina Spektor – which deeply resonates with me. Her sound is raw, honest, pure and sung from the heart in a way which isn’t bland, overdone or contrived. The combination of her emotive vocals, attention to detail in the form of a subtle stroke of cymbal here and an echo of string instruments there, has had the power to reduce me to tears in the past (although I have been known to cry at most things!).

Over the years, Joan has seen me through the best and worst of times: she’s been the soundtrack to exciting train and coach journeys across South East Asia and South America as I have admired the ever-changing landscapes, accompanied me as I have trudged miserably into work on an overheated tube wedged up against some hairy obese man’s armpit, and comforted me through the pain of a relationship break-up where I often found myself lying kidney-bean shaped, feeling sorry for myself (on this last point, what I have learned is that boyfriends may come and go, but if you discover a good artist, they have an unparalleled reliance. Joan has consistently delivered the goods since her first album and that Spitz gig in 2006, which is far more than what can be said of any of my recent relationships).


Illustration by Darren Fletcher

A multi-instrumentalist who flits effortlessly from piano to guitar to violin, Joan has worked and performed with the likes of Antony and the Johnsons, Rufus Wainwright, Lou Reed, Nick Cave and Elton John to name but a few. Much is made of the fact that she was the girlfriend of the luminous late-Jeff Buckley when he died, whose “Everybody Here Wants You” track is rumoured to be inspired by her, but for Joan to be defined by this alone is grossly unfair. The recognition that she deserves should be based purely on her own talent of epic proportions.

In the same vein as Antony and Rufus, much of Joan’s charm lies in her musical arrangements and unique which can be spine-tingling, served tender or harsh. Her new album, The Deep Field unfurls her lust for life and presents to us a more positive and upbeat individual compared to her earlier offerings, Real Life (2006) and To Survive (2008). In her own words, it is her “most open, joyous record” to date. Although the record is a departure from her more typical sombre sound, its essence is consistent with her previous work where she continues to demonstrate mood, depth, authenticity and sophisticated musical arrangements, which is a rare gem amongst some of the generic, non-memorable cack that passes for music today.


Illustration by Matilde Sazio

When I meet Joan for tea at the K-West Hotel in Shepherd’s Bush for our interview, she is friendly and upbeat, but appears visibly tired after having spent two days trekking across the UK to do promo work. I try to act cool and calm, but I am sweating like hell and on my way to the hotel, I slip over and land on my bottom to the amusement of two young teenage boys who break out into hysterics, which makes for a nice ice-breaker as I re-tell my story.

Wearing a brown leather jacket, a matching pair of trousers and a bright yellow t-shirt with “Strut ‘n’ Stuff” emblazoned across the front that she picked up from a thrift store, with her thick unkempt dark brown hair and flawless skin, Joan looks much younger than her years – much closer to 30 than 40.

As we sit on a comfy sofa in the library area of the hotel, Joan is oblivious to the two men in suits sitting behind us having a business meeting, who shoot a few disapproving glances in our direction as her voice gets progressively louder over the course of the interview. Speaking animatedly with a cup of herbal tea (she is trying to cut back on the coffee) in one hand and some neatly cut slices of apple in the other, Joan and I discuss life before Joan As Police Woman, the inspiration behind her new record, being in a better place and who’s house she’d most like to be a fly on the wall at, all in the good company of some soft-porn inspired saxophone music, playing softly in the background…

You trained as a classical musician and spent some time performing as one. What was the catalyst for you to explore being an alternative musician?
I always listened to different kinds of music as I was growing up and throughout my classical training. Classical music and non-classical music is all music so for me; it wasn’t all that big of a stretch making other music. I loved studying classical music, but I wasn’t really interested in making it my life’s work because I really wanted to make new music. There were also plenty of people who were better equipped at bringing new insight to the Beethoven violin concerto and I was not one of them. I loved learning the discipline behind that but pursuing a career in it didn’t interest me so when I moved to Boston to go to school I started playing in bands then because all my friends were in bands and the rest, I guess they say, is history.

You’ve been in several bands since you started out as a musician, including playing violin with Rufus Wainwright and Antony and the Johnsons, yet it as only in 2004 that you decided to front your own band. Why was there this delay?
Well I played violin exclusively for some time so I was mostly contributing to other peoples’ bands which I loved doing. I was playing an instrument that is like a voice in itself. You don’t write songs on the violin so I had no way of writing. I picked up a guitar in 1997 to see what it was like; I wanted to figure out if I could write songs and started writing. I put a band together called Black Beetle and wrote a few songs with them and I joined Antony’s band. At this stage, I was still playing with lots of people doing string arranging, but I also wanted to try out my voice which sounded horrible to me at the time. In the beginning you’re not used to what it sounds like and it doesn’t feel natural.


But surely you must have had reassurance from your friends that your voice is anything but horrible…
Well no one heard it. I started playing but I didn’t tell many people. I did get a lot of support from my friends which helped a lot, even if you think they’re lying because they love you.

So it was all very much about stepping slowly out of your comfort zone…
Yes, very much so. Antony had me open with one of his songs solo sometimes. It was a very anxious experience, especially as I was around a lot of astounding vocal performers. It was really scary, but I’m that kind of person where I jump into the deep end. It’s the only way to do things. I was making a record with Black Beetle that never got released, which was part of the learning process and then that band broke up in 2002 but I kept going; playing on my own and then I got a drummer to play with me and then Rufus asked me to go on tour and open for him and it just all went from there.

The first time I saw you perform was at The Spitz in 2006, and even back then you seemed to be a very natural performer. Has performing always been second nature to you?
At that point I felt a lot better. Opening for Rufus (Wainwright) was a good experience – you can’t really be opening for a crowd of total music lovers without getting your act together. Also, the fact that I come to a city that isn’t mine and tonnes of people show up. It makes you feel great; it makes you think: “OK – well at least I’m doing something right”.

When did you start recording the new album and what were your inspirations for the record?
I started by making a covers record which was fun for me to do. I wanted to get out of my head; my own songwriting. I think it really helped me to direct my songwriting on this record. I’m in a great place these days so I feel really open and joyful and I really wanted to get this across in the record. I first recorded seven songs that I had been writing since my last record; some of which I had been playing live, some I hadn’t been. I did that in March and completed those songs and surveyed the scene and decided what the record needed and then spent a few months writing five more songs to fill out the record the way I saw it in June and then mixed the whole thing at the end of last summer. It was really fun because I really had never done that before. Before I would record what I had and decide what it needed and then wrote that kind of song to fit the record so this time, the new approach was a fun exercise for me. I recorded at the same studio with the same producer and I feel very comfortable there; it makes me feel like I’m coming home. And then I just got all of my favourite musicians to contribute to the record. It was just an absolute glorious experience.

How do you think your sound has evolved since Real Life and To Survive?
It’s interesting because when I listen to my songs, I think all the time: “Where did that come from?” It’s beyond me. But I feel like I’m in a different place now…much more relaxed with myself in general. This is one of the treasures of spending more time alive because you get more comfortable with yourself and your surroundings.

You reached a milestone age last summer (Joan turned 40) – were there any anxieties?
I was really excited about it because I felt like it was a demarcation point of where I really didn’t have to give a shit about anything anymore. I never had to before, but I could just actually free myself of all the youth stuff because I have experienced a lot of stuff and it’s really been worth it even though things were very difficult at times. I feel really lucky that everyday feels a bit better than the last day because I’m determined to live a full life.

How did you celebrate?
I had a big party on my roof at home (just outside New York). It was really nice because I was there for the first time on my birthday and I really embraced it.

What advice would you give a 20 year old Joan and 30 year old Joan?
I would just reassure the 20 year old Joan that things are definitely going to get better – I did not think that then. At 30…I don’t know…the thing is I wouldn’t ever do anything differently. You have to learn everything the way you learn them, unfortunately sometimes.

What do you do to switch off?
I definitely have to exercise or I go crazy. I need that in my life so I do that a lot. I spend a certain amount of time with my friends being ridiculous and making jokes as terrible as possible. Oh and drinking way too much coffee.

Who’s house would you most like to be a fly on the wall at?
Prince…definitely! He’s the only person who I think: “What is he doing right now?”. Because you know it’s something weird…or fascinating. He’s just incredible; amazing.

Joan’s new album The Deep Field is out now on PIAS records and she is playing across the UK until 13 February.


Illustration by Matilde Sazio

“This song is about fucking up against the wall, viagra ” announces Joan Wasser to introduce “Hard white wall”, a track from her second album To Survive at her Barbican gig. Never the shrinking violet, Joan is standing in an all-in-one fitted black leather number, slashed at the back, as the spotlights converge on her small frame. Last Sunday was the seventh time I have seen Joan As Police Woman in London.

The first time I saw Joan play was on a balmy summer’s evening in 2006 at now defunct The Spitz in Spitalfields, which in my opinion, used to put on some of the best gigs in London. The venue was at capacity that night and the air inside was clammy to the point where every surface I touched, whether it was a table or wall, seemed to be coated with a film of sweat. Fresh from a tour supporting Guillemots, Joan took the stage in a silver metallic floor length gown and wowed the audience with her electric solo set. No big stage productions, no fancy costume changes, not even a band; just Joan with her powerful, soulful vocals, Korg keyboard and guitar. I am certain that she gained some lifelong fans that night, of which I am one.


Illustration by Darren Fletcher

The truth is my enthusiasm for Joan extends beyond just liking her records and appreciating her live performances. There’s something about her music – in the same vein as Antony and the Johnsons, Rufus Wainwright, Cat Power and Regina Spektor – which deeply resonates with me. Her sound is raw, honest, pure and sung from the heart in a way which isn’t bland, overdone or contrived. The combination of her emotive vocals, attention to detail in the form of a subtle stroke of cymbal here and an echo of string instruments there, has had the power to reduce me to tears in the past (although I have been known to cry at most things!).

Over the years, Joan has seen me through the best and worst of times: she’s been the soundtrack to exciting train and coach journeys across South East Asia and South America as I have admired the ever-changing landscapes, accompanied me as I have trudged miserably into work on an overheated tube wedged up against some hairy obese man’s armpit, and comforted me through the pain of a relationship break-up where I often found myself lying kidney-bean shaped, feeling sorry for myself (on this last point, what I have learned is that boyfriends may come and go, but if you discover a good artist, they have an unparalleled reliance. Joan has consistently delivered the goods since her first album and that Spitz gig in 2006, which is far more than what can be said of any of my recent relationships).


Illustration by Darren Fletcher

A multi-instrumentalist who flits effortlessly from piano to guitar to violin, Joan has worked and performed with the likes of Antony and the Johnsons, Rufus Wainwright, Lou Reed, Nick Cave and Elton John to name but a few. Much is made of the fact that she was the girlfriend of the luminous late-Jeff Buckley when he died, whose “Everybody Here Wants You” track is rumoured to be inspired by her, but for Joan to be defined by this alone is grossly unfair. The recognition that she deserves should be based purely on her own talent of epic proportions.

In the same vein as Antony and Rufus, much of Joan’s charm lies in her musical arrangements and unique which can be spine-tingling, served tender or harsh. Her new album, The Deep Field unfurls her lust for life and presents to us a more positive and upbeat individual compared to her earlier offerings, Real Life (2006) and To Survive (2008). In her own words, it is her “most open, joyous record” to date. Although the record is a departure from her more typical sombre sound, its essence is consistent with her previous work where she continues to demonstrate mood, depth, authenticity and sophisticated musical arrangements, which is a rare gem amongst some of the generic, non-memorable cack that passes for music today.


Illustration by Matilde Sazio

When I meet Joan for tea at the K-West Hotel in Shepherd’s Bush for our interview, she is friendly and upbeat, but appears visibly tired after having spent two days trekking across the UK to do promo work. I try to act cool and calm, but I am sweating like hell and on my way to the hotel, I slip over and land on my bottom to the amusement of two young teenage boys who break out into hysterics, which makes for a nice ice-breaker as I re-tell my story.

Wearing a brown leather jacket, a matching pair of trousers and a bright yellow t-shirt with “Strut ‘n’ Stuff” emblazoned across the front that she picked up from a thrift store, with her thick unkempt dark brown hair and flawless skin, Joan looks much younger than her years – much closer to 30 than 40.

As we sit on a comfy sofa in the library area of the hotel, Joan is oblivious to the two men in suits sitting behind us having a business meeting, who shoot a few disapproving glances in our direction as her voice gets progressively louder over the course of the interview. Speaking animatedly with a cup of herbal tea (she is trying to cut back on the coffee) in one hand and some neatly cut slices of apple in the other, Joan and I discuss life before Joan As Police Woman, the inspiration behind her new record, being in a better place and who’s house she’d most like to be a fly on the wall at, all in the good company of some soft-porn inspired saxophone music, playing softly in the background…

You trained as a classical musician and spent some time performing as one. What was the catalyst for you to explore being an alternative musician?
I always listened to different kinds of music as I was growing up and throughout my classical training. Classical music and non-classical music is all music so for me; it wasn’t all that big of a stretch making other music. I loved studying classical music, but I wasn’t really interested in making it my life’s work because I really wanted to make new music. There were also plenty of people who were better equipped at bringing new insight to the Beethoven violin concerto and I was not one of them. I loved learning the discipline behind that but pursuing a career in it didn’t interest me so when I moved to Boston to go to school I started playing in bands then because all my friends were in bands and the rest, I guess they say, is history.

You’ve been in several bands since you started out as a musician, including playing violin with Rufus Wainwright and Antony and the Johnsons, yet it as only in 2004 that you decided to front your own band. Why was there this delay?
Well I played violin exclusively for some time so I was mostly contributing to other peoples’ bands which I loved doing. I was playing an instrument that is like a voice in itself. You don’t write songs on the violin so I had no way of writing. I picked up a guitar in 1997 to see what it was like; I wanted to figure out if I could write songs and started writing. I put a band together called Black Beetle and wrote a few songs with them and I joined Antony’s band. At this stage, I was still playing with lots of people doing string arranging, but I also wanted to try out my voice which sounded horrible to me at the time. In the beginning you’re not used to what it sounds like and it doesn’t feel natural.


But surely you must have had reassurance from your friends that your voice is anything but horrible…
Well no one heard it. I started playing but I didn’t tell many people. I did get a lot of support from my friends which helped a lot, even if you think they’re lying because they love you.

So it was all very much about stepping slowly out of your comfort zone…
Yes, very much so. Antony had me open with one of his songs solo sometimes. It was a very anxious experience, especially as I was around a lot of astounding vocal performers. It was really scary, but I’m that kind of person where I jump into the deep end. It’s the only way to do things. I was making a record with Black Beetle that never got released, which was part of the learning process and then that band broke up in 2002 but I kept going; playing on my own and then I got a drummer to play with me and then Rufus asked me to go on tour and open for him and it just all went from there.

The first time I saw you perform was at The Spitz in 2006, and even back then you seemed to be a very natural performer. Has performing always been second nature to you?
At that point I felt a lot better. Opening for Rufus (Wainwright) was a good experience – you can’t really be opening for a crowd of total music lovers without getting your act together. Also, the fact that I come to a city that isn’t mine and tonnes of people show up. It makes you feel great; it makes you think: “OK – well at least I’m doing something right”.

When did you start recording the new album and what were your inspirations for the record?
I started by making a covers record which was fun for me to do. I wanted to get out of my head; my own songwriting. I think it really helped me to direct my songwriting on this record. I’m in a great place these days so I feel really open and joyful and I really wanted to get this across in the record. I first recorded seven songs that I had been writing since my last record; some of which I had been playing live, some I hadn’t been. I did that in March and completed those songs and surveyed the scene and decided what the record needed and then spent a few months writing five more songs to fill out the record the way I saw it in June and then mixed the whole thing at the end of last summer. It was really fun because I really had never done that before. Before I would record what I had and decide what it needed and then wrote that kind of song to fit the record so this time, the new approach was a fun exercise for me. I recorded at the same studio with the same producer and I feel very comfortable there; it makes me feel like I’m coming home. And then I just got all of my favourite musicians to contribute to the record. It was just an absolute glorious experience.

How do you think your sound has evolved since Real Life and To Survive?
It’s interesting because when I listen to my songs, I think all the time: “Where did that come from?” It’s beyond me. But I feel like I’m in a different place now…much more relaxed with myself in general. This is one of the treasures of spending more time alive because you get more comfortable with yourself and your surroundings.

You reached a milestone age last summer (Joan turned 40) – were there any anxieties?
I was really excited about it because I felt like it was a demarcation point of where I really didn’t have to give a shit about anything anymore. I never had to before, but I could just actually free myself of all the youth stuff because I have experienced a lot of stuff and it’s really been worth it even though things were very difficult at times. I feel really lucky that everyday feels a bit better than the last day because I’m determined to live a full life.

How did you celebrate?
I had a big party on my roof at home (just outside New York). It was really nice because I was there for the first time on my birthday and I really embraced it.

What advice would you give a 20 year old Joan and 30 year old Joan?
I would just reassure the 20 year old Joan that things are definitely going to get better – I did not think that then. At 30…I don’t know…the thing is I wouldn’t ever do anything differently. You have to learn everything the way you learn them, unfortunately sometimes.

What do you do to switch off?
I definitely have to exercise or I go crazy. I need that in my life so I do that a lot. I spend a certain amount of time with my friends being ridiculous and making jokes as terrible as possible. Oh and drinking way too much coffee.

Who’s house would you most like to be a fly on the wall at?
Prince…definitely! He’s the only person who I think: “What is he doing right now?”. Because you know it’s something weird…or fascinating. He’s just incredible; amazing.

Joan’s new album The Deep Field is out now on PIAS records and she is playing across the UK until 13 February.

valentines foxes by bex glover
Valentines Foxes by Bex Glover.

By now if you have any interest in the upcoming consumer fest that is Valentines Day you will probably already have read Hannah’s slightly bah humbug Valentines blog post, recipe which nevertheless gave some great tips on how to best celebrate this festival of luuuurve.

Peacock Heart by Jenny Lloyd
Peacock Heart by Jenny Lloyd. Available to buy as a print over on Society 6.

Last year I detailed how Valentines has been for me in the past – in almost every instance a non event unless I went to the trouble of sending friends and family something special.

jenny robins - red valentine
Red Valentine by Jenny Robins. You can buy her Book of Love here on Etsy.

But I’ve been in my current relationship for quite awhile now and this year Valentines Day throws up all sorts of new worries for me… Will he feel pressurised to take me out? Do I even want to go out and join the masses, here now that the option may in fact be available? What do I feel about how I should be treated and what, at the end of the day, is the best expression of love? Don’t laugh, I’ve seriously never had to think about these things before: my love life has been that rubbish for so long.

valentine's day by Natsuki-Otani
LSD Love by Natsuki Otani – available to buy online at Society 6.

Well, unsurprisingly I have to say that my views remain pretty much the same as they did last year. For me the best way to show that you care about someone is to put a bit of thought into whatever you decide to do on Valentines Day, whether you are showing that kindness to friends and family or a special partner – something that it goes without saying should really be an ongoing year-round state of affairs.

youmakemetick by Adam Smith
youmakemetick by Adam Smith.

Whatever you do steer clear of the crazed demands to BUY BUY BUY, and instead think of what your loved one truly appreciates – which is most likely to be your time and your energy. For me receiving something hand made is always the most appreciated gift there is – time having become such a precious resource in itself. There are some really sweet ideas that cost barely a penny over on Hannah’s blog.

Valentines Icecream by Gemma Smith
Valentines Icecream by Gemma Smith.

Failing that a gift hand made by someone else is definitely a close second best. So in the spirit of collaboration I asked people to send me their hand made Valentines gift ideas via twitter – here’s my pick of the best:

Anko Fairy Steps pendant
Ankolie has contributed to Amelia’s Magazine as an illustrator – here’s her lovely little Fairy Steps necklace which features really cute heart links and a central cabochon that features one of her paintings, available on Etsy.

lovebirds-becca thorne
Becca Thorne offers this adorable love birds linoprint on Etsy.

stay over toothbrush pendant by plastic seconds
On the recycled jewellery front how about this jokey Stay Over toothbrush necklace from Plastic Seconds? Also seen in the ICA shop.

Prick Your Finger hearts
Prick Your Finger offer these lovely knitted wool hearts that were knitted by Mary in the Shetlands: a steal at £4.50

Rob Ryan Valentines
He’s the king of romantic whimsy so I felt duty bound to include the now obligatory Rob Ryan laser cut piece Can We Shall We – miraculously there appear to still be some of these in stock at Soma Gallery. Grab em whilst you can.

Valentines fisheye camera by Gemma Smith
Valentines fisheye camera by Gemma Smith.

Lomography have brought out a special edition Diana F+ camera encrusted in naked people and a Fisheye 2 in syrupy sweet pink. If your lover is not yet a hipstamatic aficionado now may might be a good time for them to try analogue again.

I Heart Music by Liz Lewis
I Heart Music by Liz Lewis.

Flowers would never ever go amiss… so long as they haven’t been flown in from some beleaguered country far away.

LOVE by Lou Cloud
LOVE by Lou Cloud.

And I like jewellery. Don’t know why. I just do. I think it’s something about the fact that a treasured piece can be worn almost all the time as a reminder of someone’s devotion, which is why I respond very well to delicate pieces… particularly in gold.

Laura Gravestock
Love these rose gold pieces by Laura Gravestock, and quite reasonably priced too.

Peppermint Patty. An oil painting by Artist Andrea
Peppermint Patty. An oil painting by Artist Andrea.

Speaking of which, the much anticipated UK Fairtrade ethical gold standard came into force only yesterday, so here’s hoping that it will soon become very much easier to buy luxury jewellery that is made without harm to people or planet. Because, after all, where’s the love in that?

Oria-blossom-bird
Over at EC One ethical jewellery brand Oria (featured in Amelia’s Compendium of Fashion Illustration) offer their lovely lovebird earrings – as illustrated in my book. Purrrrfect, and they come with a totally clear conscience.

Finally, if you’re looking for something to do that’s a bit out of the ordinary, how about a trip to the Museum of Everything to see the current Peter Blake curated exhibition for the last time? There will be things to watch all over the weekend, including live music, and a film showing.

Je t'aime by Anieszka Banks
Je t’aime by Anieszka Banks.

The School for Life is well known for hosting some ever so intriguing seminars. On February 14th they ask:
Who’d be in a relationship?
At its best, love can make us deliriously happy. At worst, it makes us more miserable than anything on earth. It robs us of our autonomy, freedom and financial independence. It can bring disillusion, heartbreak and betrayal.
Who’d be single?
We’re confined to the prison of our established and frequently very boring selves. At best, singleness allows us to be free agents, able to fulfill our desires. At worst, it drags us down to the depths of loneliness. It robs us of intimacy, personal engagement, and an understanding that true happiness is about giving oneself away. 

Paris by Joanna Faria
Paris by Joana Faria.

So why not book an evening with author Simon Critchley? He’ll be talking at The School for Life which is located at 70 Marchmont Street, London WC1N 1AB.

Elliott_Quince_Linocut_illustration Quinky Art
And if you’re still feeling a bit grumpy about the whole affair how about this free downloadable Zombie Valentines lino cut from Quinky Art?

No pressure on the boyfriend at all then. But between this lot there’s a little something for everyone don’t you think? Especially the ladies amongst us…

emma_block_Oria_jewellery
Oria Lovebird necklace as featured in Amelia’s Compendium of Fashion Illustration. Illustration by Emma Block.

You can read more about my abysmal love life in my Valentines blog post from 2010.

Categories ,ACOFI, ,Adam Smith, ,Amelia’s Compendium of Fashion Illustration, ,Andrea Peterson, ,Anieszka Banks, ,Ankolie, ,Artist Andrea, ,Becca Thorne, ,Bex Glover, ,Can We Shall We, ,Diana F+, ,EC One, ,Emma Block, ,Ethical Gold, ,etsy, ,fairtrade, ,Fisheye 2, ,Flowers, ,Gemma Smith, ,gifts, ,Gold, ,hearts, ,ica, ,Je t’aime, ,Jenny Lloyd, ,Jenny Robins, ,jewellery, ,Joana Faria, ,Laura Gravestock, ,Liz Lewis, ,Lou Cloud, ,Museum of Everything, ,Natsuki Otani, ,Oria, ,Peacock Heart, ,Peter Blake, ,Plastic Seconds, ,Prick your Finger, ,Quinky Art, ,rob ryan, ,Simon Critchley, ,Society 6, ,Soma Gallery, ,The School of Life, ,Valentine’s Day

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Amelia’s Magazine | London Fashion Week S/S 2011 Catwalk Review: Jena.Theo ‘Bandoliers’

The best things about fashion week are, health in order of importance:

1. The shows. Of course, cheap otherwise we wouldn’t be here. I mean, remedy the good ones. Sometimes you want to explain to a designer that just because something can be designed, it doesn’t mean it should be. George Mallory said he wanted to climb Mount Everest “because it’s there” and look what happened to him. I’m pleased to report I’ve liked everything I’ve seen so far though.
2. Free pastries.
3. Looking at people’s crazy crazy outfits. Gorgeous girls are ten a penny at fashion week, so what everyone really wants to see is cone-shaped hairdos, dresses that are basically just a bra sellotaped to climbing apparatus and interesting hats.

The press room is also pretty great. It has benches and foliage:

Cool laptops I’ve seen around Somerset House.

Superior snacks I have seen and eaten:

I did also try to take sneaky pictures of the good-looking men who were providing help in the registration room but I bottled it when one of them looked at me, so I’m afraid you’ll just have to use your imagination.

The best things about fashion week are, pharmacy in order of importance:
1. The shows. Of course, for sale otherwise we wouldn’t be here. I mean, more about the good ones. Sometimes you want to explain to a designer that just because something can be designed, it doesn’t mean it should be. George Mallory said he wanted to climb Mount Everest “because it’s there” and look what happened to him. I’m pleased to report I’ve liked everything I’ve seen so far though.
2. Free pastries.
3. Looking at people’s crazy crazy outfits. Gorgeous girls are ten a penny at fashion week, so what everyone really wants to see is cone-shaped hairdos, dresses that are basically just a bra sellotaped to climbing apparatus and interesting hats.

The press room is also pretty great. It has benches and foliage:

Cool laptops I’ve seen around Somerset House.

Superior snacks I have seen and eaten:


The best things about fashion week are, stuff in order of importance:
1. The shows. Of course, online otherwise we wouldn’t be here. I mean, the good ones. Sometimes you want to explain to a designer that just because something can be designed, it doesn’t mean it should be. George Mallory said he wanted to climb Mount Everest “because it’s there” and look what happened to him. I’m pleased to report I’ve liked everything I’ve seen so far though.
2. Free pastries.
3. Looking at people’s crazy crazy outfits. Gorgeous girls are ten a penny at fashion week, so what everyone really wants to see is cone-shaped hairdos, dresses that are basically just a bra sellotaped to climbing apparatus and interesting hats.

The press room is also pretty great. It has benches and foliage:

Cool laptops I’ve seen around Somerset House.

Superior snacks I have seen and eaten:


The best things about fashion week are, order in order of importance:
1. The shows. Of course, otherwise we wouldn’t be here. I mean, the good ones. Sometimes you want to explain to a designer that just because something can be designed, it doesn’t mean it should be. George Mallory said he wanted to climb Mount Everest “because it’s there” and look what happened to him. I’m pleased to report I’ve liked everything I’ve seen so far though.
2. Free pastries.
3. Looking at people’s crazy crazy outfits. Gorgeous girls are ten a penny at fashion week, so what everyone really wants to see is cone-shaped hairdos, dresses that are basically just a bra sellotaped to climbing apparatus and interesting hats.

The press room is also pretty great. It has benches and foliage:

Cool laptops I’ve seen around Somerset House.

Superior snacks I have seen and eaten:

I did also try to take sneaky pictures of the good-looking men who were providing help in the registration room but I bottled it when one of them looked at me, so I’m afraid you’ll just have to use your imagination.

Illustration by Andrea Peterson

It wasn’t until the Jena.Theo show that I got my first hit of fashion adrenaline this LFW. The design duo Jenny Holmes and Dimitris Theocharidis have created a Spring Summer 2011 collection that combines both the theatrical and the wearable in draped layers of silk and jersey, viagra shot through with the Midas Touch. Gold leaf was applied not only to models’ eyelids and nails, stuff but also to wrists, ankles, collarbones and occasionally a breast or belly button that happened to be exposed.

Though this would undoubtedly not go down well in the Muslim world today, culturally the show was a mix of the old Arabian Nights- or Prince of Persia to the computer game generation- meets 19th century British colonialism; models’ heads swathed in oversized turbans or hair backcombed into huge Victorian updos.


Illustration by Andrea Peterson

The winners of Fashion Fringe 2009 struck a perfect balance between catwalk creativity and clothes with the potential to actually be worn in real life; with a wonderful take on a Victorian hoop skirt to finish the show. This is what I want from an LFW show; something fun and inventive as well as wearable clothes.

I sat with the team behind the new Young British Designers website, which champions the likes of Jena.Theo; keep an eye out on Amelia’s for an interview with them coming soon. Adriana was in fact loyally wearing an outfit by the design duo.

We were in the second row but got bumped forward into the front row when there were a few spaces at the last minute; which meant I managed to get a really good, close up look at the raw painted gold leaf stiletto platform shoes.

It also of course, meant goody bag ahoy!Ironically, for a fashion gift, this included one of the best brownies I’ve ever eaten; in fact many of the stalls in the LFW exhibitions have sweets or cakes on their stands, though you never see anyone eating them. Except me.Which is why you won’t see me bearing my gilded navel in an Aladdin-esque ensemble anytime soon.


Illustration by Andrea Peterson

Categories ,Andrea Peterson, ,arabian nights, ,Jena.theo, ,lfw, ,S/S 2011, ,Somerset House, ,young british designers

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Amelia’s Magazine | London Fashion Week S/S 2011: best of Somerset House & New Gen stands.

Romina Karamanea skirt by Joana Faria
Romina Karamanea by Joana Faria.

For the past two seasons the good PRs for Romina Karamanea have ensured that there has been a ridiculously long queue of baying fashionistas gathered outside the venue before they will let anyone inside. And so it was that I found myself being battered around on the steps of the Freemasons’ Hall on Tuesday evening: it was late in the week and it wasn’t really what I wanted to deal with. My ex flatmate, physician a stylist that I used to work for at The Face – we fell out – elbowed her way through with a bit of a hissy fit. I was seriously considering just calling it a day and going right home. But then security announced that it was “too late for stars” meaning that the complex sticker system on invites was about to be ditched, visit this site and the PRs next to me agreed that the most important people were at the front anyway – that would include me! love it when I feel less of a pleb – and it all looked good to go.

Romina Karamanea pants by Joana Faria
Romina Karamanea by Joana Faria
Romina Karamanea by Joana Faria.

Ushered into one of the gorgeous upper halls I was seated only three chairs down from my nemesis, who of course refused to acknowledge me. Which is just fine, our relationship never recovered after she moved out of my house and refused to pay her outstanding rent. But it did make me smile. Oh happy days. A funny little girl in latex stockings was placed between us and quickly presented me with her card and a badge. I had to spend the whole show trying to take photos around her as she leaned into the catwalk to take hers, but in the grand tradition of fashion week poseurs she sure was good at attracting attention.

Romina Karamanea SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
Romina Karamanea SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
Romina Karamanea SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
Romina-Karamanea-by-Lisa-Stannard
Romina Karamanea by Lisa Stannard.

For this season Greek born, Central Saint Martins trained Romina looked to abstract expressionism for inspiration, though as her press release cheekily says, basically “the designer had popped to see her artist friend Hermes for a glass of wine.” Three colour stories of white, bluey green and red explored passionate brush strokes and the patterns of natural phenomena and geology. Opposing structures morphed into one garment, voluminous swathes of chiffon colliding with cleanly structured tailoring. It was a big collection that included a smattering of menswear but my favourite pieces were undoubtedly the final ones, glorious rich red undergarments topped with sweeping patterned dresses. Utterly divine.

Romina Karamanea by Joana Faria
Romina Karamanea by Joana Faria
Romina Karamanea by Joana Faria.

I wasn’t aware that Romina Karamanea was an advocate of sustainable design until I found a leaflet featuring her work in the basement at Esthetica, where the Centre for Sustainable Fashion had a corner stand showcasing some of the designers they work with. This organisation was set up by the London College of Fashion, with the aim of “challenging and provoking the established fashion system to work towards the goals of promoting human well being and respecting nature’s limits, whilst creating beauty and style.” Fashion designers are invited to attend workshops and one to one mentoring sessions about how to implement sustainable design practices and apparently Romina is one of their ambassadors, which is very exciting news.

Romina Karamanea SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
Romina Karamanea SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
Romina Karamanea SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
Romina-Karamanea-by-Lisa-Stannard
Romina Karamanea by Lisa Stannard.

But a line in the first paragraph of her blurb immediately made my heart sink just a tiny bit. And not just because of the bad grammar. “Each piece is designed to be loved and kept forever getting better over-time, hopefully like the wearer.” Along with the notion of upcycling (now a far trendier way to say recycling in fashion circles) and making the most of factory waste – both of which I hasten to add are admirable choices when it comes to making fashion – creating clothes to be worn for a long time has become a bit of a get out quick clause for designers. It’s an easy statement to trot out because high fashion is invariably all about luxury and has a price tag to match. Not many people who invest in designer pieces are likely to throw away their purchases every season.

Romina Karamanea SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
Romina Karamanea SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
Romina Karamanea SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
Romina Karamanea SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
All photography by Amelia Gregory.

But let’s just stop and think a bit more here. The reality is that these designers continue to show new collections, and we are inevitably urged to delve deep and create ourselves a new wardrobe each time a new season comes around. I only very rarely buy new clothes myself but I can’t claim to be completely removed from the process because I also get really excited about new creativity on the catwalks. It’s an innate human excitement that you can’t take away, but it’s how we deal with that feeling that counts. Of course I am against throwaway mass produced fashion, but sustainability cannot be achieved merely by saying that people should treasure clothes forever, not whilst producing a new collection twice a year with no deeper links to sustainable practice.

Romina Karamanea SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
Romina Karamanea SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
Romina Karamanea SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
Romina Karamanea SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
Romina Karamanea SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory

Reading on, I applaud Romina Karamanea‘s efforts. She is careful to fully research her supply chain, reduce fabric waste, utilise low impact digital printing techniques and organic cottons. She’s an edgy designer with a big following who can really affect people’s perception of working in a sustainable way. But it’s interesting that none of this information was on the press release for the catwalk show, or on her website: after all, who wants to be pigeonholed? It says a lot about how we still perceive an ethical imperative in design.

Romina Karamanea SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
Romina Karamanea SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
Romina Karamanea SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
Romina Karamanea SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
Romina Karamanea SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
Romina Karamanea SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
Romina Karamanea SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
Romina Karamanea SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory

LFW-Cecilia Mary Robson-Andrea-Peterson
Cecilia Mary Robson by Andrea Peterson.

As well as all the shows there are of course a huge number of static stands to visit during LFW. Generally I manage to whip around them in something of a frenzy, there making mental notes of what to cover over the the ensuing months and accepting business cards but never with the intention of a proper write up on this ‘ere blog. This time though, I determined to do it properly. Because I want to support new designers that I like. Despite the fact that I myself (and this website) is deemed so unworthy of encouragement from the BFC that I made a staggering £19 from a Mercedes sponsored BFC advert over the course of LFW. It would be nice if I myself was to receive some support. Just a little bit. You know, enough to keep this darn blog rolling… because right now it’s in severe danger of death: I need to eat you know.

Somerset House SS2011 Tata Naka shoes
Tata Naka shoes. All photography by Amelia Gregory.

That bit of moaning done and dusted, here’s the low down of the best bits that I saw at Somerset House, both in New Gen and on the main stands. Some of it will have appeared on the catwalk, but if we didn’t make it to the show for whatever reason or didn’t get tickets I’ll cover it here instead. Note to designers: we’d prefer to see your catwalk show wherever possible. I’ll cover jewellery and Esthetica in other blogs.

Somerset House SS2011 Grazia helium dogs
Grazia helium dogs.

Tata Naka
This Georgian sister duo is one of my favourites – I used to style with their clothing a lot, most memorably in a shoot I did in the first ever issue of Amelia’s Magazine. They used to have quite a high profile but that has taken a bit of a nosedive in recent years – probably due to their decision to place more emphasis on creating a solid commercial business. But over the last few seasons they have been slowly creeping back into the centre of the fashion storm and I was very sad to have missed their presentation this year. My own error entirely. This season, like fellow independents Tatty Devine and Drowned in Sound (a very good music website) they were celebrating their 10th anniversary. Whilst perusing the gorgeous printed and embroidered kaftans and playsuits I got thoroughly distracted by a mad buyer who was trying on all the clothes and demanding fabric and colour changes. She was no doubt very important but downright scary: she watched over me whilst I deleted a photo of her (only wanted to get the outfit on someone to be illustrated, honest guv)

tata naka by genie espinosa
Tata Naka by Genie Espinosa.

DavidDavid
Two brothers, one who designs, the other with the business brains *oh why wasn’t I born with a business minded sister? sigh* DavidDavid have been on my radar since I first spotted their unique geometric designs in Mandi Lennard‘s press office many a moon ago. Back then I presumed some feisty young club kid was responsible – but I was clearly wrong: at least one of these designers was seen carrying his kid through the courtyard at Somerset House. Upstarts they ain’t.

Somerset House SS2011 DavidDavid
Somerset House SS2011 DavidDavid

This season’s collection was fetchingly presented against the light beaming through the window… pastel blocks marched against white and grey backgrounds on signature simple tees. But I think what I’d really like most this season is a chair covered in their fabric.

Somerset House SS2011 DavidDavid
DavidDavid.

Felicity Brown
Felicity Brown was discovered in one of the funny little New Gen huts: all froufrou dip dyed cascades of silk ruffled fabric, it reminded me of some much loved 70s dresses that I own. Inspiration was found in the shameless females in paintings of Toulouse-Lautrec. Since graduating from the Royal College of Art Felicity has worked with loads of top designers including Mulberry and Lanvin. Utterly fabulous.

Somerset House SS2011 Felicity Brown
Somerset House SS2011 Felicity Brown
Felicity Brown by Monique Anderson
Felicity Brown by Monique Anderson
Felicity Brown by Monique Anderson.

Mary Katrantzou
I was intrigued by Mary Katrantzou last season but sadly we were not to be recipients of a catwalk ticket – and thus missed the lampshade skirts in action. I nevertheless enjoyed a close up view of her digitally reworked prints of classic 70s glamour photography from Newton and Bourdin.

Somerset House SS2011 Mary Katrantzou
Somerset House SS2011 Mary Katrantzou
LFWSS11 Mary Katrantzou_KitLee
Mary Katrantzou by Kit Lee.

Yang Du
Yang Du was another designer that grabbed my attention last season. She creates huge surrealist sweater dresses in playful designs, and I was particularly taken by the crocodile top. But full marks also have to go for her display, which was really quite special – huge blow up eyeballs, lion finger puppets and masks… and not forgetting the helium dogs (see above for a picture). Oh hang on, they were a freebie from some magazine… still great though.

Somerset House SS2011 Yang Du
Somerset House SS2011 Yang Du
Somerset House SS2011 Yang Du
Somerset House SS2011 Yang Du
Yang Du by Genie Espinosa.
Yang Du by Genie Espinosa.

Klavers Van Engelen
Klavers Van Engelen were spotted in the Eastern Block room. Beautiful relaxed European design from these Dutch designers.

Somerset House SS2011 Klavers Van Engelen
Somerset House SS2011 Klavers Van Engelen
Klavers Van Engelen by Fiona M Chapelle
Klavers Van Engelen by Fiona M Chapelle
Klavers Van Engelen by Fiona M Chapelle.

Cecilia Mary Robson
The Cecilia Mary Robson collection was absolutely adorable and right up my street – watch a movie of these cute brightly coloured patch work dresses and skirts here.

Cecilia Mary Robson by Andrea Peterson
Cecilia Mary Robson by Andrea Peterson
Cecilia Mary Robson by Andrea Peterson.

Bebaroque
I only spotted the fabulous Bebaroque beaded tights as they were packing up to go home, and so didn’t get much of a chance to check out what they were made from and how well they might stand up to some heavy wear. But they sure looked bloody brilliant. Scottish designers Mhairi McNicol and Chloe Patience studied at the Glasgow School of Art before hooking up to start their hosiery business. If you fancy sending me a pair to test drive I’d sure like to give them a go ladies.

LFW SS2011 Bebaroque

Christopher Raeburn
Where to start with Christopher Raeburn? He appears to have made that tricky transition from Esthetica to the loftier climes of New Gen. Which is a good thing. Since we first started to champion his environmentally friendly designs he has expanded his anorak making repertoire – I really loved all the new bright colourways with giant spot prints. But I’m still smarting over the fact that he declined to give me a leftover rabbit, despite my very vocal appreciation of these cleverly designed little buggers and despite the continued support this blog has given him. And having seen lots of other apparently more *emminent* fashionistas carrying said rabbits around tucked smugly under their arms. Hurumph.

Somerset House SS2011 Christopher Raeburn
Somerset House SS2011 Christopher Raeburn
Somerset House SS2011 Christopher Raeburn
LFW SS2011 Menswear Andrew davis
Andrew Davis with his rabbit.

Categories ,Andrea Peterson, ,Bebaroque, ,BFC, ,Cecilia Mary Robson, ,Chloe Patience, ,Christopher Raeburn, ,daviddavid, ,Eastern Block, ,esthetica, ,Felicity Brown, ,Fiona M Chapelle, ,Genie Espinosa, ,Hosiery, ,Kit Lee, ,Klavers Van Engelen, ,lfw, ,London Fashion Week, ,Mandi Lennard, ,Mary Katrantzou, ,Mhairi McNicol, ,Monique Anderson, ,New Gen, ,Royal College of Art, ,Somerset House, ,Tata Naka, ,Tatty Devine, ,Yang Du

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Amelia’s Magazine | London Fashion Week S/S 2011 Catwalk Review: Charlie Le Mindu

Illustration by Eugenia Tsmiklis

After pegging it down the strand, ed I arrived at the BFC tent with less than 30 seconds to spare. My desperate dan demeanour must have won me brownie points somewhere as I was ushered into the catwalk seating area so fast my feet barely touched the floor. Expecting the Issa show to begin, imagine my suprise when Basso and Brooke creations started to walk their way down the catwalk…there must have been some awful mistake?…yes, indeed there was Mr Matt Bramford (who must be reading his timetable upside down last night).

A 9am Sunday morning treat: great turnout (including model Amber Rose – front row), amazing prints and a seamless show. To be able to mix so many colours, prints, patterns and styles into pieces of clothing is a talent few can boast. I have never trained as a fashion designer but I imagine that there comes a time early in their lives, perhaps as a kid choosing between a pencil and a box of crayolas, when their speciality is set for life. In my view, all designers have not so much a signature look as a part of the DNA clothing they excel at: silhouette, colour, print, cut. Some designers can change the way we see the body – I’m thinking of Miuccia Prada –and some fill in the outlines of fashionable shapes with their own individual colour, pattern and texture.

Illustration by Eugenia Tsmiklis

Prints were the order of the day with a slight All Saints (edgy brand not 90s girlband) feel to some of the ones with italic scripting and antique maps running across. After reading the press release, it turns out that the writing is actually handwritten notes by Da Vinci, Tolstoy, Balzac and others in a nod to the non digital past. Digital prints are then sliced into the notes and maps, creating more dramatic, eclectic mixes. Other prints included trompe l’oeil images of ruched fabrics, mainly used in larger panels on the back of dresses but occasionally inserted onto the front. I am personally a huge fan of print design (I was a colour-change felttip pen sort of kid), which I think often gets ignored in favour of more flashy, and by definition, flesh-revealing options (anyone designing an elaborately printed bikini has rather missed the point). There’s something depressing about an off-the-shelf pattern you end up seeing on clothes everywhere, from high street shops to market stalls. I want someone to have sat down and designed the images that appear on the surface of clothes with as much care and dedication as they did every other aspect.

Basso and Brooke’s S/S11 show didn’t pioneer any particular dress shape, although all their clothes look wearable: lots of skater-skirted party dresses, a collared blouse and skirt and filmy jumpsuitst. The skirts had great shape and movement to them, especially the shorter kicky ones; the dresses made use of clashing prints on the front and back and thought had also been put into matching shoes to each look. However, what they do to a tee is the print; everyone knows that when you go to their show you’ll get lovingly rendered prints galore. This also means subtle use of colour, and when the models took their turn all together, it added up to a handwritten, map inspired rainbow.

Shoes at Basso & Brooke

Some of the choices surprised me at first: leopard print? Hermes-scarf style illustrated floral squares? But because they were digitally chopped up with gold foil sections that seemed to creep over the garish parts, or set against a background of pearly grey silk, I think it worked. There is a trend now for mixing up complicated prints, which when it works, looks incredible. One good thing about animal print is that you can’t really beat nature for creating a pleasing whole and by sticking to the silvery sheen of water, brown and rusty orange of animals spots and mineral metallics, there’s a good chance an outfit will hang together, just like Basso and Brooke’s show.

Illustration by Eugenia Tsmiklis

After pegging it down the strand, this I arrived at the BFC tent with less than 30 seconds to spare. My desperate dan demeanour must have won me brownie points somewhere as I was ushered into the catwalk seating area so fast my feet barely touched the floor. Expecting the Issa show to begin, see imagine my suprise when Basso and Brooke creations started to walk their way down the catwalk…there must have been some awful mistake?…yes, indeed there was Mr Matt Bramford (who must be reading his timetable upside down last night).

A 9am Sunday morning treat: great turnout (including model Amber Rose – front row), amazing prints and a seamless show. To be able to mix so many colours, prints, patterns and styles into pieces of clothing is a talent few can boast. I have never trained as a fashion designer but I imagine that there comes a time early in their lives, perhaps as a kid choosing between a pencil and a box of crayolas, when their speciality is set for life. In my view, all designers have not so much a signature look as a part of the DNA clothing they excel at: silhouette, colour, print, cut. Some designers can change the way we see the body – I’m thinking of Miuccia Prada –and some fill in the outlines of fashionable shapes with their own individual colour, pattern and texture.

Illustration by Eugenia Tsmiklis

Prints were the order of the day with a slight All Saints (edgy brand not 90s girlband) feel to some of the ones with italic scripting and antique maps running across. After reading the press release, it turns out that the writing is actually handwritten notes by Da Vinci, Tolstoy, Balzac and others in a nod to the non digital past. Digital prints are then sliced into the notes and maps, creating more dramatic, eclectic mixes. Other prints included trompe l’oeil images of ruched fabrics, mainly used in larger panels on the back of dresses but occasionally inserted onto the front. I am personally a huge fan of print design (I was a colour-change felttip pen sort of kid), which I think often gets ignored in favour of more flashy, and by definition, flesh-revealing options (anyone designing an elaborately printed bikini has rather missed the point). There’s something depressing about an off-the-shelf pattern you end up seeing on clothes everywhere, from high street shops to market stalls. I want someone to have sat down and designed the images that appear on the surface of clothes with as much care and dedication as they did every other aspect.

Illustrated by June Chanpoomidole

Basso and Brooke’s S/S11 show didn’t pioneer any particular dress shape, although all their clothes look wearable: lots of skater-skirted party dresses, a collared blouse and skirt and filmy jumpsuitst. The skirts had great shape and movement to them, especially the shorter kicky ones; the dresses made use of clashing prints on the front and back and thought had also been put into matching shoes to each look. However, what they do to a tee is the print; everyone knows that when you go to their show you’ll get lovingly rendered prints galore. This also means subtle use of colour, and when the models took their turn all together, it added up to a handwritten, map inspired rainbow.

Photograph by Florence Massey

Some of the choices surprised me at first: leopard print? Hermes-scarf style illustrated floral squares? But because they were digitally chopped up with gold foil sections that seemed to creep over the garish parts, or set against a background of pearly grey silk, I think it worked. There is a trend now for mixing up complicated prints, which when it works, looks incredible. One good thing about animal print is that you can’t really beat nature for creating a pleasing whole and by sticking to the silvery sheen of water, brown and rusty orange of animals spots and mineral metallics, there’s a good chance an outfit will hang together, just like Basso and Brooke’s show.

Illustration by June Chanpoomidole

Illustration by Eugenia Tsmiklis

After pegging it down the strand, buy information pills I arrived at the BFC tent with less than 30 seconds to spare. My desperate dan demeanour must have won me brownie points somewhere as I was ushered into the catwalk seating area so fast my feet barely touched the floor. Expecting the Issa show to begin, viagra 40mg imagine my suprise when Basso and Brooke creations started to walk their way down the catwalk…there must have been some awful mistake?…yes, indeed there was Mr Matt Bramford (who must be reading his timetable upside down last night).

A 9am Sunday morning treat: great turnout (including model Amber Rose – front row), amazing prints and a seamless show. To be able to mix so many colours, prints, patterns and styles into pieces of clothing is a talent few can boast. I have never trained as a fashion designer but I imagine that there comes a time early in their lives, perhaps as a kid choosing between a pencil and a box of crayolas, when their speciality is set for life. In my view, all designers have not so much a signature look as a part of the DNA clothing they excel at: silhouette, colour, print, cut. Some designers can change the way we see the body – I’m thinking of Miuccia Prada –and some fill in the outlines of fashionable shapes with their own individual colour, pattern and texture.

Illustration by Eugenia Tsmiklis

Prints were the order of the day with a slight All Saints (edgy brand not 90s girlband) feel to some of the ones with italic scripting and antique maps running across. After reading the press release, it turns out that the writing is actually handwritten notes by Da Vinci, Tolstoy, Balzac and others in a nod to the non digital past. Digital prints are then sliced into the notes and maps, creating more dramatic, eclectic mixes. Other prints included trompe l’oeil images of ruched fabrics, mainly used in larger panels on the back of dresses but occasionally inserted onto the front. I am personally a huge fan of print design (I was a colour-change felttip pen sort of kid), which I think often gets ignored in favour of more flashy, and by definition, flesh-revealing options (anyone designing an elaborately printed bikini has rather missed the point). There’s something depressing about an off-the-shelf pattern you end up seeing on clothes everywhere, from high street shops to market stalls. I want someone to have sat down and designed the images that appear on the surface of clothes with as much care and dedication as they did every other aspect.

Illustrated by June Chanpoomidole

Basso and Brooke’s S/S11 show didn’t pioneer any particular dress shape, although all their clothes look wearable: lots of skater-skirted party dresses, a collared blouse and skirt and filmy jumpsuitst. The skirts had great shape and movement to them, especially the shorter kicky ones; the dresses made use of clashing prints on the front and back and thought had also been put into matching shoes to each look. However, what they do to a tee is the print; everyone knows that when you go to their show you’ll get lovingly rendered prints galore. This also means subtle use of colour, and when the models took their turn all together, it added up to a handwritten, map inspired rainbow.

Photograph by Florence Massey

Some of the choices surprised me at first: leopard print? Hermes-scarf style illustrated floral squares? But because they were digitally chopped up with gold foil sections that seemed to creep over the garish parts, or set against a background of pearly grey silk, I think it worked. There is a trend now for mixing up complicated prints, which when it works, looks incredible. One good thing about animal print is that you can’t really beat nature for creating a pleasing whole and by sticking to the silvery sheen of water, brown and rusty orange of animals spots and mineral metallics, there’s a good chance an outfit will hang together, just like Basso and Brooke’s show.

Illustration by June Chanpoomidole

Illustration by Eugenia Tsmiklis

After pegging it down the strand, sickness I arrived at the BFC tent with less than 30 seconds to spare. My desperate dan demeanour must have won me brownie points somewhere as I was ushered into the catwalk seating area so fast my feet barely touched the floor. Expecting the Issa show to begin, imagine my suprise when Basso and Brooke creations started to walk their way down the catwalk…there must have been some awful mistake?…yes, indeed there was Mr Matt Bramford (who must be reading his timetable upside down last night).

A 9am Sunday morning treat: great turnout (including model Amber Rose – front row), amazing prints and a seamless show. To be able to mix so many colours, prints, patterns and styles into pieces of clothing is a talent few can boast. I have never trained as a fashion designer but I imagine that there comes a time early in their lives, perhaps as a kid choosing between a pencil and a box of crayolas, when their speciality is set for life. In my view, all designers have not so much a signature look as a part of the DNA clothing they excel at: silhouette, colour, print, cut. Some designers can change the way we see the body – I’m thinking of Miuccia Prada –and some fill in the outlines of fashionable shapes with their own individual colour, pattern and texture.

Illustration by Eugenia Tsmiklis

Prints were the order of the day with a slight All Saints (edgy brand not 90s girlband) feel to some of the ones with italic scripting and antique maps running across. After reading the press release, it turns out that the writing is actually handwritten notes by Da Vinci, Tolstoy, Balzac and others in a nod to the non digital past. Digital prints are then sliced into the notes and maps, creating more dramatic, eclectic mixes. Other prints included trompe l’oeil images of ruched fabrics, mainly used in larger panels on the back of dresses but occasionally inserted onto the front. I am personally a huge fan of print design (I was a colour-change felttip pen sort of kid), which I think often gets ignored in favour of more flashy, and by definition, flesh-revealing options (anyone designing an elaborately printed bikini has rather missed the point). There’s something depressing about an off-the-shelf pattern you end up seeing on clothes everywhere, from high street shops to market stalls. I want someone to have sat down and designed the images that appear on the surface of clothes with as much care and dedication as they did every other aspect.

Illustrated by June Chanpoomidole

Basso and Brooke’s S/S11 show didn’t pioneer any particular dress shape, although all their clothes look wearable: lots of skater-skirted party dresses, a collared blouse and skirt and filmy jumpsuitst. The skirts had great shape and movement to them, especially the shorter kicky ones; the dresses made use of clashing prints on the front and back and thought had also been put into matching shoes to each look. However, what they do to a tee is the print; everyone knows that when you go to their show you’ll get lovingly rendered prints galore. This also means subtle use of colour, and when the models took their turn all together, it added up to a handwritten, map inspired rainbow.

Photograph by Florence Massey

Some of the choices surprised me at first: leopard print? Hermes-scarf style illustrated floral squares? But because they were digitally chopped up with gold foil sections that seemed to creep over the garish parts, or set against a background of pearly grey silk, I think it worked. There is a trend now for mixing up complicated prints, which when it works, looks incredible. One good thing about animal print is that you can’t really beat nature for creating a pleasing whole and by sticking to the silvery sheen of water, brown and rusty orange of animals spots and mineral metallics, there’s a good chance an outfit will hang together, just like Basso and Brooke’s show.

Illustration by June Chanpoomidole

Illustration by Eugenia Tsmiklis

After pegging it down the strand, sale I arrived at the BFC tent with less than 30 seconds to spare. My desperate dan demeanour must have won me brownie points somewhere as I was ushered into the catwalk seating area so fast my feet barely touched the floor. Expecting the Issa show to begin, store imagine my suprise when Basso and Brooke creations started to walk their way down the catwalk…there must have been some awful mistake?…yes, viagra sale indeed there was Mr Matt Bramford (who must be reading his timetable upside down last night).

A 9am Sunday morning treat: great turnout (including model Amber Rose – front row), amazing prints and a seamless show. To be able to mix so many colours, prints, patterns and styles into pieces of clothing is a talent few can boast. I have never trained as a fashion designer but I imagine that there comes a time early in their lives, perhaps as a kid choosing between a pencil and a box of crayolas, when their speciality is set for life. In my view, all designers have not so much a signature look as a part of the DNA clothing they excel at: silhouette, colour, print, cut. Some designers can change the way we see the body – I’m thinking of Miuccia Prada –and some fill in the outlines of fashionable shapes with their own individual colour, pattern and texture.

Illustration by Eugenia Tsmiklis

Prints were the order of the day with a slight All Saints (edgy brand not 90s girlband) feel to some of the ones with italic scripting and antique maps running across. After reading the press release, it turns out that the writing is actually handwritten notes by Da Vinci, Tolstoy, Balzac and others in a nod to the non digital past. Digital prints are then sliced into the notes and maps, creating more dramatic, eclectic mixes.

Other prints included trompe l’oeil images of ruched fabrics, mainly used in larger panels on the back of dresses but occasionally inserted onto the front. I am personally a huge fan of print design (I was a colour-change felttip pen sort of kid), which I think often gets ignored in favour of more flashy, and by definition, flesh-revealing options (anyone designing an elaborately printed bikini has rather missed the point). There’s something depressing about an off-the-shelf pattern you end up seeing on clothes everywhere, from high street shops to market stalls. I want someone to have sat down and designed the images that appear on the surface of clothes with as much care and dedication as they did every other aspect.

Illustrated by June Chanpoomidole

Basso and Brooke’s S/S11 show didn’t pioneer any particular dress shape, although all their clothes look wearable: lots of skater-skirted party dresses, a collared blouse and skirt and filmy jumpsuitst. The skirts had great shape and movement to them, especially the shorter kicky ones; the dresses made use of clashing prints on the front and back and thought had also been put into matching shoes to each look. However, what they do to a tee is the print; everyone knows that when you go to their show you’ll get lovingly rendered prints galore. This also means subtle use of colour, and when the models took their turn all together, it added up to a handwritten, map inspired rainbow.

Photograph by Florence Massey

Some of the choices surprised me at first: leopard print? Hermes-scarf style illustrated floral squares? But because they were digitally chopped up with gold foil sections that seemed to creep over the garish parts, or set against a background of pearly grey silk, I think it worked. There is a trend now for mixing up complicated prints, which when it works, looks incredible. One good thing about animal print is that you can’t really beat nature for creating a pleasing whole and by sticking to the silvery sheen of water, brown and rusty orange of animals spots and mineral metallics, there’s a good chance an outfit will hang together, just like Basso and Brooke’s show.

Illustration by June Chanpoomidole

LFW-CharlieleMindu-Andrea-Peterson
Charlie Le Mindu by Andrea Peterson.

There’s precious little rest to be had over Fashion Week as anyone who’s involved will know. And so it was that I found myself hurriedly uploading a blog this morning before the Charlie Le Mindu show – having barely slept – when I saw a tweet from Matt saying that the queue was already huge. So it goes: it doesn’t matter what shitty time slot you have in the schedule, prescription if you’re a big enough draw then they’ll be rolling out of their beds, online dressed to the nines for the cameras.

LFW Charlie Le Mindu by Jessica Singh
LFW Charlie Le Mindu by Jessica Singh
LFW Charlie Le Mindu by Jessica Singh
Charlie Le Mindu by Jessica Singh.

So I chucked my slap on and rode like the wind, getting into Bloomsbury Square in just fifteen minutes albeit a bit sweatily, where I crashed past the poseurs. Take that, you fashion victims. See, I’m not even dressed wackily. Well, only in so far as I always dress in a *slightly* colourful and mismatched combination of high street and vintage 80s finds.

Nani Puspasari_charlie le mindu
Charlie Le Mindu by Nani Puspasari.

I took my seat next to a five year old and two year old (with their parents OBVIOUSLY) – just some of many kids at this and other shows today – I think Sunday tends to bring the families out. I was a little concerned though, I have to say, when the pounding music started up and mum needed to cover the poor wee one’s ears. Tut tut. Your hearing never recovers from even the most minor damage and all that.

Charlie Le Mindu by Nani Puspasari
Charlie Le Mindu by Nani Puspasari.

Okay, you probably know that we like Charlie Le Mindu. He’s a lot of fun. Of course it’s never been about the clothes as such, though the blurb on his hand out did make me laugh. “Get your passports ready as Charlie jets you off in style with a perfect combination of sexy wigs and super hot, super wearable clothes and accessories.” Hang on, let’s just go through that once again. Super wearable? Am I thinking of the same designer? The one that covers his models head to toe in human hair as if it was some kind of exotic fur? And now that’s really got me thinking. Where on earth does one source all this hair from anyway? I’d love to do a little investigation and find out, for instance, how many nationalities made up the black pantaloon number with red leopard spots. And do you think they were shorn humanely?

Charlie le Mindu SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
Charlie le Mindu SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
Charlie le Mindu SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
All photography by Amelia Gregory.

Really though, what’s necessary with Le Mindu is just to set all rational thought aside, sit back and enjoy the show. A model bearing the headlamps of fast cars in her metallic gilded claws? Check. A pink poodle head headdress. Check. Lady Gaga-esque neon yellow wigs. Check.

Charlie le Mindu SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
Charlie le Mindu SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
Charlie le Mindu SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
Charlie le Mindu SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory

Hang on, are the wigs on the heads made of human hair, or is it only for the dresses? That’s got me really confused.

Charlie le Mindu SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
Charlie le Mindu SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
Charlie le Mindu SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory

Bubblegum pink floor length bubble hair skirts? Check. Flamingo accessories? Bare boobs and utterly smooth lady bottoms. Now there’s something to theorise over. No hair where there should be some, and mounds of someone else’s hair everywhere else. I think you’re getting the idea… bizarre, enjoyable, but also vaguely unsettling.

Charlie le Mindu SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
Charlie le Mindu SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
Charlie le Mindu SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory

In retrospect a quick glance through my photos reveals that there were a few wearable swimsuits hidden amongst the eye popping spectacle. But they weren’t what I will remember this show for.

Charlie le Mindu SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
Charlie le Mindu SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory

Of course, all of this was a joy to photograph and illustrate. So let’s just enjoy, eh? Til next time Charlie

Charlie le Mindu SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
Charlie le Mindu SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
Charlie le Mindu SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory

Categories ,Andrea Peterson, ,Charlie le Mindu, ,Jessica Singh, ,lfw, ,London Fashion Week, ,Nani Puspasari, ,Wigs

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Amelia’s Magazine | London Fashion Week S/S 2011 Catwalk Review: Charlie Le Mindu

Illustration by Eugenia Tsmiklis

After pegging it down the strand, ed I arrived at the BFC tent with less than 30 seconds to spare. My desperate dan demeanour must have won me brownie points somewhere as I was ushered into the catwalk seating area so fast my feet barely touched the floor. Expecting the Issa show to begin, imagine my suprise when Basso and Brooke creations started to walk their way down the catwalk…there must have been some awful mistake?…yes, indeed there was Mr Matt Bramford (who must be reading his timetable upside down last night).

A 9am Sunday morning treat: great turnout (including model Amber Rose – front row), amazing prints and a seamless show. To be able to mix so many colours, prints, patterns and styles into pieces of clothing is a talent few can boast. I have never trained as a fashion designer but I imagine that there comes a time early in their lives, perhaps as a kid choosing between a pencil and a box of crayolas, when their speciality is set for life. In my view, all designers have not so much a signature look as a part of the DNA clothing they excel at: silhouette, colour, print, cut. Some designers can change the way we see the body – I’m thinking of Miuccia Prada –and some fill in the outlines of fashionable shapes with their own individual colour, pattern and texture.

Illustration by Eugenia Tsmiklis

Prints were the order of the day with a slight All Saints (edgy brand not 90s girlband) feel to some of the ones with italic scripting and antique maps running across. After reading the press release, it turns out that the writing is actually handwritten notes by Da Vinci, Tolstoy, Balzac and others in a nod to the non digital past. Digital prints are then sliced into the notes and maps, creating more dramatic, eclectic mixes. Other prints included trompe l’oeil images of ruched fabrics, mainly used in larger panels on the back of dresses but occasionally inserted onto the front. I am personally a huge fan of print design (I was a colour-change felttip pen sort of kid), which I think often gets ignored in favour of more flashy, and by definition, flesh-revealing options (anyone designing an elaborately printed bikini has rather missed the point). There’s something depressing about an off-the-shelf pattern you end up seeing on clothes everywhere, from high street shops to market stalls. I want someone to have sat down and designed the images that appear on the surface of clothes with as much care and dedication as they did every other aspect.

Basso and Brooke’s S/S11 show didn’t pioneer any particular dress shape, although all their clothes look wearable: lots of skater-skirted party dresses, a collared blouse and skirt and filmy jumpsuitst. The skirts had great shape and movement to them, especially the shorter kicky ones; the dresses made use of clashing prints on the front and back and thought had also been put into matching shoes to each look. However, what they do to a tee is the print; everyone knows that when you go to their show you’ll get lovingly rendered prints galore. This also means subtle use of colour, and when the models took their turn all together, it added up to a handwritten, map inspired rainbow.

Shoes at Basso & Brooke

Some of the choices surprised me at first: leopard print? Hermes-scarf style illustrated floral squares? But because they were digitally chopped up with gold foil sections that seemed to creep over the garish parts, or set against a background of pearly grey silk, I think it worked. There is a trend now for mixing up complicated prints, which when it works, looks incredible. One good thing about animal print is that you can’t really beat nature for creating a pleasing whole and by sticking to the silvery sheen of water, brown and rusty orange of animals spots and mineral metallics, there’s a good chance an outfit will hang together, just like Basso and Brooke’s show.

Illustration by Eugenia Tsmiklis

After pegging it down the strand, this I arrived at the BFC tent with less than 30 seconds to spare. My desperate dan demeanour must have won me brownie points somewhere as I was ushered into the catwalk seating area so fast my feet barely touched the floor. Expecting the Issa show to begin, see imagine my suprise when Basso and Brooke creations started to walk their way down the catwalk…there must have been some awful mistake?…yes, indeed there was Mr Matt Bramford (who must be reading his timetable upside down last night).

A 9am Sunday morning treat: great turnout (including model Amber Rose – front row), amazing prints and a seamless show. To be able to mix so many colours, prints, patterns and styles into pieces of clothing is a talent few can boast. I have never trained as a fashion designer but I imagine that there comes a time early in their lives, perhaps as a kid choosing between a pencil and a box of crayolas, when their speciality is set for life. In my view, all designers have not so much a signature look as a part of the DNA clothing they excel at: silhouette, colour, print, cut. Some designers can change the way we see the body – I’m thinking of Miuccia Prada –and some fill in the outlines of fashionable shapes with their own individual colour, pattern and texture.

Illustration by Eugenia Tsmiklis

Prints were the order of the day with a slight All Saints (edgy brand not 90s girlband) feel to some of the ones with italic scripting and antique maps running across. After reading the press release, it turns out that the writing is actually handwritten notes by Da Vinci, Tolstoy, Balzac and others in a nod to the non digital past. Digital prints are then sliced into the notes and maps, creating more dramatic, eclectic mixes. Other prints included trompe l’oeil images of ruched fabrics, mainly used in larger panels on the back of dresses but occasionally inserted onto the front. I am personally a huge fan of print design (I was a colour-change felttip pen sort of kid), which I think often gets ignored in favour of more flashy, and by definition, flesh-revealing options (anyone designing an elaborately printed bikini has rather missed the point). There’s something depressing about an off-the-shelf pattern you end up seeing on clothes everywhere, from high street shops to market stalls. I want someone to have sat down and designed the images that appear on the surface of clothes with as much care and dedication as they did every other aspect.

Illustrated by June Chanpoomidole

Basso and Brooke’s S/S11 show didn’t pioneer any particular dress shape, although all their clothes look wearable: lots of skater-skirted party dresses, a collared blouse and skirt and filmy jumpsuitst. The skirts had great shape and movement to them, especially the shorter kicky ones; the dresses made use of clashing prints on the front and back and thought had also been put into matching shoes to each look. However, what they do to a tee is the print; everyone knows that when you go to their show you’ll get lovingly rendered prints galore. This also means subtle use of colour, and when the models took their turn all together, it added up to a handwritten, map inspired rainbow.

Photograph by Florence Massey

Some of the choices surprised me at first: leopard print? Hermes-scarf style illustrated floral squares? But because they were digitally chopped up with gold foil sections that seemed to creep over the garish parts, or set against a background of pearly grey silk, I think it worked. There is a trend now for mixing up complicated prints, which when it works, looks incredible. One good thing about animal print is that you can’t really beat nature for creating a pleasing whole and by sticking to the silvery sheen of water, brown and rusty orange of animals spots and mineral metallics, there’s a good chance an outfit will hang together, just like Basso and Brooke’s show.

Illustration by June Chanpoomidole

Illustration by Eugenia Tsmiklis

After pegging it down the strand, buy information pills I arrived at the BFC tent with less than 30 seconds to spare. My desperate dan demeanour must have won me brownie points somewhere as I was ushered into the catwalk seating area so fast my feet barely touched the floor. Expecting the Issa show to begin, viagra 40mg imagine my suprise when Basso and Brooke creations started to walk their way down the catwalk…there must have been some awful mistake?…yes, indeed there was Mr Matt Bramford (who must be reading his timetable upside down last night).

A 9am Sunday morning treat: great turnout (including model Amber Rose – front row), amazing prints and a seamless show. To be able to mix so many colours, prints, patterns and styles into pieces of clothing is a talent few can boast. I have never trained as a fashion designer but I imagine that there comes a time early in their lives, perhaps as a kid choosing between a pencil and a box of crayolas, when their speciality is set for life. In my view, all designers have not so much a signature look as a part of the DNA clothing they excel at: silhouette, colour, print, cut. Some designers can change the way we see the body – I’m thinking of Miuccia Prada –and some fill in the outlines of fashionable shapes with their own individual colour, pattern and texture.

Illustration by Eugenia Tsmiklis

Prints were the order of the day with a slight All Saints (edgy brand not 90s girlband) feel to some of the ones with italic scripting and antique maps running across. After reading the press release, it turns out that the writing is actually handwritten notes by Da Vinci, Tolstoy, Balzac and others in a nod to the non digital past. Digital prints are then sliced into the notes and maps, creating more dramatic, eclectic mixes. Other prints included trompe l’oeil images of ruched fabrics, mainly used in larger panels on the back of dresses but occasionally inserted onto the front. I am personally a huge fan of print design (I was a colour-change felttip pen sort of kid), which I think often gets ignored in favour of more flashy, and by definition, flesh-revealing options (anyone designing an elaborately printed bikini has rather missed the point). There’s something depressing about an off-the-shelf pattern you end up seeing on clothes everywhere, from high street shops to market stalls. I want someone to have sat down and designed the images that appear on the surface of clothes with as much care and dedication as they did every other aspect.

Illustrated by June Chanpoomidole

Basso and Brooke’s S/S11 show didn’t pioneer any particular dress shape, although all their clothes look wearable: lots of skater-skirted party dresses, a collared blouse and skirt and filmy jumpsuitst. The skirts had great shape and movement to them, especially the shorter kicky ones; the dresses made use of clashing prints on the front and back and thought had also been put into matching shoes to each look. However, what they do to a tee is the print; everyone knows that when you go to their show you’ll get lovingly rendered prints galore. This also means subtle use of colour, and when the models took their turn all together, it added up to a handwritten, map inspired rainbow.

Photograph by Florence Massey

Some of the choices surprised me at first: leopard print? Hermes-scarf style illustrated floral squares? But because they were digitally chopped up with gold foil sections that seemed to creep over the garish parts, or set against a background of pearly grey silk, I think it worked. There is a trend now for mixing up complicated prints, which when it works, looks incredible. One good thing about animal print is that you can’t really beat nature for creating a pleasing whole and by sticking to the silvery sheen of water, brown and rusty orange of animals spots and mineral metallics, there’s a good chance an outfit will hang together, just like Basso and Brooke’s show.

Illustration by June Chanpoomidole

Illustration by Eugenia Tsmiklis

After pegging it down the strand, sickness I arrived at the BFC tent with less than 30 seconds to spare. My desperate dan demeanour must have won me brownie points somewhere as I was ushered into the catwalk seating area so fast my feet barely touched the floor. Expecting the Issa show to begin, imagine my suprise when Basso and Brooke creations started to walk their way down the catwalk…there must have been some awful mistake?…yes, indeed there was Mr Matt Bramford (who must be reading his timetable upside down last night).

A 9am Sunday morning treat: great turnout (including model Amber Rose – front row), amazing prints and a seamless show. To be able to mix so many colours, prints, patterns and styles into pieces of clothing is a talent few can boast. I have never trained as a fashion designer but I imagine that there comes a time early in their lives, perhaps as a kid choosing between a pencil and a box of crayolas, when their speciality is set for life. In my view, all designers have not so much a signature look as a part of the DNA clothing they excel at: silhouette, colour, print, cut. Some designers can change the way we see the body – I’m thinking of Miuccia Prada –and some fill in the outlines of fashionable shapes with their own individual colour, pattern and texture.

Illustration by Eugenia Tsmiklis

Prints were the order of the day with a slight All Saints (edgy brand not 90s girlband) feel to some of the ones with italic scripting and antique maps running across. After reading the press release, it turns out that the writing is actually handwritten notes by Da Vinci, Tolstoy, Balzac and others in a nod to the non digital past. Digital prints are then sliced into the notes and maps, creating more dramatic, eclectic mixes. Other prints included trompe l’oeil images of ruched fabrics, mainly used in larger panels on the back of dresses but occasionally inserted onto the front. I am personally a huge fan of print design (I was a colour-change felttip pen sort of kid), which I think often gets ignored in favour of more flashy, and by definition, flesh-revealing options (anyone designing an elaborately printed bikini has rather missed the point). There’s something depressing about an off-the-shelf pattern you end up seeing on clothes everywhere, from high street shops to market stalls. I want someone to have sat down and designed the images that appear on the surface of clothes with as much care and dedication as they did every other aspect.

Illustrated by June Chanpoomidole

Basso and Brooke’s S/S11 show didn’t pioneer any particular dress shape, although all their clothes look wearable: lots of skater-skirted party dresses, a collared blouse and skirt and filmy jumpsuitst. The skirts had great shape and movement to them, especially the shorter kicky ones; the dresses made use of clashing prints on the front and back and thought had also been put into matching shoes to each look. However, what they do to a tee is the print; everyone knows that when you go to their show you’ll get lovingly rendered prints galore. This also means subtle use of colour, and when the models took their turn all together, it added up to a handwritten, map inspired rainbow.

Photograph by Florence Massey

Some of the choices surprised me at first: leopard print? Hermes-scarf style illustrated floral squares? But because they were digitally chopped up with gold foil sections that seemed to creep over the garish parts, or set against a background of pearly grey silk, I think it worked. There is a trend now for mixing up complicated prints, which when it works, looks incredible. One good thing about animal print is that you can’t really beat nature for creating a pleasing whole and by sticking to the silvery sheen of water, brown and rusty orange of animals spots and mineral metallics, there’s a good chance an outfit will hang together, just like Basso and Brooke’s show.

Illustration by June Chanpoomidole

Illustration by Eugenia Tsmiklis

After pegging it down the strand, sale I arrived at the BFC tent with less than 30 seconds to spare. My desperate dan demeanour must have won me brownie points somewhere as I was ushered into the catwalk seating area so fast my feet barely touched the floor. Expecting the Issa show to begin, store imagine my suprise when Basso and Brooke creations started to walk their way down the catwalk…there must have been some awful mistake?…yes, viagra sale indeed there was Mr Matt Bramford (who must be reading his timetable upside down last night).

A 9am Sunday morning treat: great turnout (including model Amber Rose – front row), amazing prints and a seamless show. To be able to mix so many colours, prints, patterns and styles into pieces of clothing is a talent few can boast. I have never trained as a fashion designer but I imagine that there comes a time early in their lives, perhaps as a kid choosing between a pencil and a box of crayolas, when their speciality is set for life. In my view, all designers have not so much a signature look as a part of the DNA clothing they excel at: silhouette, colour, print, cut. Some designers can change the way we see the body – I’m thinking of Miuccia Prada –and some fill in the outlines of fashionable shapes with their own individual colour, pattern and texture.

Illustration by Eugenia Tsmiklis

Prints were the order of the day with a slight All Saints (edgy brand not 90s girlband) feel to some of the ones with italic scripting and antique maps running across. After reading the press release, it turns out that the writing is actually handwritten notes by Da Vinci, Tolstoy, Balzac and others in a nod to the non digital past. Digital prints are then sliced into the notes and maps, creating more dramatic, eclectic mixes.

Other prints included trompe l’oeil images of ruched fabrics, mainly used in larger panels on the back of dresses but occasionally inserted onto the front. I am personally a huge fan of print design (I was a colour-change felttip pen sort of kid), which I think often gets ignored in favour of more flashy, and by definition, flesh-revealing options (anyone designing an elaborately printed bikini has rather missed the point). There’s something depressing about an off-the-shelf pattern you end up seeing on clothes everywhere, from high street shops to market stalls. I want someone to have sat down and designed the images that appear on the surface of clothes with as much care and dedication as they did every other aspect.

Illustrated by June Chanpoomidole

Basso and Brooke’s S/S11 show didn’t pioneer any particular dress shape, although all their clothes look wearable: lots of skater-skirted party dresses, a collared blouse and skirt and filmy jumpsuitst. The skirts had great shape and movement to them, especially the shorter kicky ones; the dresses made use of clashing prints on the front and back and thought had also been put into matching shoes to each look. However, what they do to a tee is the print; everyone knows that when you go to their show you’ll get lovingly rendered prints galore. This also means subtle use of colour, and when the models took their turn all together, it added up to a handwritten, map inspired rainbow.

Photograph by Florence Massey

Some of the choices surprised me at first: leopard print? Hermes-scarf style illustrated floral squares? But because they were digitally chopped up with gold foil sections that seemed to creep over the garish parts, or set against a background of pearly grey silk, I think it worked. There is a trend now for mixing up complicated prints, which when it works, looks incredible. One good thing about animal print is that you can’t really beat nature for creating a pleasing whole and by sticking to the silvery sheen of water, brown and rusty orange of animals spots and mineral metallics, there’s a good chance an outfit will hang together, just like Basso and Brooke’s show.

Illustration by June Chanpoomidole

LFW-CharlieleMindu-Andrea-Peterson
Charlie Le Mindu by Andrea Peterson.

There’s precious little rest to be had over Fashion Week as anyone who’s involved will know. And so it was that I found myself hurriedly uploading a blog this morning before the Charlie Le Mindu show – having barely slept – when I saw a tweet from Matt saying that the queue was already huge. So it goes: it doesn’t matter what shitty time slot you have in the schedule, prescription if you’re a big enough draw then they’ll be rolling out of their beds, online dressed to the nines for the cameras.

LFW Charlie Le Mindu by Jessica Singh
LFW Charlie Le Mindu by Jessica Singh
LFW Charlie Le Mindu by Jessica Singh
Charlie Le Mindu by Jessica Singh.

So I chucked my slap on and rode like the wind, getting into Bloomsbury Square in just fifteen minutes albeit a bit sweatily, where I crashed past the poseurs. Take that, you fashion victims. See, I’m not even dressed wackily. Well, only in so far as I always dress in a *slightly* colourful and mismatched combination of high street and vintage 80s finds.

Nani Puspasari_charlie le mindu
Charlie Le Mindu by Nani Puspasari.

I took my seat next to a five year old and two year old (with their parents OBVIOUSLY) – just some of many kids at this and other shows today – I think Sunday tends to bring the families out. I was a little concerned though, I have to say, when the pounding music started up and mum needed to cover the poor wee one’s ears. Tut tut. Your hearing never recovers from even the most minor damage and all that.

Charlie Le Mindu by Nani Puspasari
Charlie Le Mindu by Nani Puspasari.

Okay, you probably know that we like Charlie Le Mindu. He’s a lot of fun. Of course it’s never been about the clothes as such, though the blurb on his hand out did make me laugh. “Get your passports ready as Charlie jets you off in style with a perfect combination of sexy wigs and super hot, super wearable clothes and accessories.” Hang on, let’s just go through that once again. Super wearable? Am I thinking of the same designer? The one that covers his models head to toe in human hair as if it was some kind of exotic fur? And now that’s really got me thinking. Where on earth does one source all this hair from anyway? I’d love to do a little investigation and find out, for instance, how many nationalities made up the black pantaloon number with red leopard spots. And do you think they were shorn humanely?

Charlie le Mindu SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
Charlie le Mindu SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
Charlie le Mindu SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
All photography by Amelia Gregory.

Really though, what’s necessary with Le Mindu is just to set all rational thought aside, sit back and enjoy the show. A model bearing the headlamps of fast cars in her metallic gilded claws? Check. A pink poodle head headdress. Check. Lady Gaga-esque neon yellow wigs. Check.

Charlie le Mindu SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
Charlie le Mindu SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
Charlie le Mindu SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
Charlie le Mindu SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory

Hang on, are the wigs on the heads made of human hair, or is it only for the dresses? That’s got me really confused.

Charlie le Mindu SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
Charlie le Mindu SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
Charlie le Mindu SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory

Bubblegum pink floor length bubble hair skirts? Check. Flamingo accessories? Bare boobs and utterly smooth lady bottoms. Now there’s something to theorise over. No hair where there should be some, and mounds of someone else’s hair everywhere else. I think you’re getting the idea… bizarre, enjoyable, but also vaguely unsettling.

Charlie le Mindu SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
Charlie le Mindu SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
Charlie le Mindu SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory

In retrospect a quick glance through my photos reveals that there were a few wearable swimsuits hidden amongst the eye popping spectacle. But they weren’t what I will remember this show for.

Charlie le Mindu SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
Charlie le Mindu SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory

Of course, all of this was a joy to photograph and illustrate. So let’s just enjoy, eh? Til next time Charlie

Charlie le Mindu SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
Charlie le Mindu SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
Charlie le Mindu SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory

Categories ,Andrea Peterson, ,Charlie le Mindu, ,Jessica Singh, ,lfw, ,London Fashion Week, ,Nani Puspasari, ,Wigs

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Amelia’s Magazine | London Fashion Week S/S 2011 Catwalk Review: Charlotte Eskildsen


Illustration by Andrea Peterson

As part of Designers Remix, prostate diagnosis designer Charlotte Eskildsen, website who is creative director of the enterprise published their signature collection last week. After winning the prestigious Danish Design Guldknappen award she has become a force to be reckoned with in international fashion since starting the line in 2002. Her S/S 2011 collection ‘Liquid Sky’ is inspired by cloud formations.

Draped fabrics. Origami folds. A flash orange dress. Scraped back hair tied in tight knots. The show, held in the Portico rooms was one of my favourites of the week. Like many others, it stuck strongly to a muted colour range, beginning with pieces in greys, creams and blacks. Small details like the delicate lace insets and just-seen underskirts pulled the collection together extremely well.

Charlotte’s skill lies in how well she collects the fabric together and makes it hang. Ruffles on the shoulders of her cream dresses are restrained and kept from looking fussy, the great bright orange dress (which I desperately want) is understated in all other ways bar the colour and the waterfall collars on the jackets carried the theme of softness through even on heavier fabrics.


Illustration by Andrea Peterson

The clothes ranged from smart black dresses, to sand toned wafty jackets and ruffled party frocks in various shades of cream. This is a collection that is just good. I can’t put my finger on an exact feature or piece that puts it into a higher category for me and I think that’s why I like it.

More than just a beautiful ready to wear summer collection, it brings together a floaty casual look with added details of specialness without being over the top. If I wanted to sound very fashiony I would call it perfect ‘understated chic’, but hopefully I’ve described it better than that!


Categories ,Andrea Peterson, ,Charlotte Eskildsen, ,fashion, ,Goldknappen Award, ,illustration, ,London Fashion Week, ,Portico Rooms, ,S/S 2011, ,Somerset House, ,Womenswear

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Amelia’s Magazine | London Fashion Week S/S 2011 Catwalk Review: Lako Bukia

Illustration by Lesley Barnes

London Fashion Week is a breeze by bike, ask mind after starting the day super early at My Beautiful Fashion, shop Fashion Editor Matt Bramford and I hot-stepped it via bike to see Craig Lawrence’s beautiful collection (see Matt’s review here) in the elegant setting of the Portico rooms. Afterwards I dashed up to Covent Garden before returning for Betty Jackson at 1pm in the BFC tent, buy more about Somerset House. I can’t put my finger on it but something really entrigued me about what it was that Betty Jackson would present, a long standing figure on the London Fashion Week on schedule, this is a designer I know incredibly little about. I appeared to be the only one either, the tent located in the Courtyard of Somerset house was packed to the rafters and there appeared to be a pile up as people dashed towards the front row.

Illustration by Gemma Randall

The collection was beautiful simplicity with Jackson updating 1940′s land girl outfits, the essence of which was most recently seen on Keira Knightly and Sienna Miller in the Dylan Thomas Biopic “The Edge of Love”

It is -especially on a cold London September day- easy to forget you are watching Spring Summer, especially when designers tempt you with instead beautifully thick knits and wool infused trousers.

Illustration by Lesley Barnes

Luckily after lulling me into a gentle consideration of how warm those knit would be. Jackson threw a curve ball with the appearance of a swimsuit and blouse adorned with club tropicana prints before the collection returned to soft muted browns, mind you was rather partial to the above jumpsuit illustrated by Gemma Randall. At this point I glanced around the room – fashion fhows are a great place to watch people’s expressions – I noticed a very beautiful Jo Wood standing (looking completely unperturbed) by the photographers, it must have been a real scrum at the door for Rock Royalty to be left standing.

Illustration by Gemma Randall

A luxurious collection, the shapes were simple but well made and the designer certainly knows how to maintain a crowds attention with the occasional loud print or teeny tiny swimming costumes, interdispersed within sophisticated summer glamour of long simply cut black skirts. Mind you, what is it about all designers obsession with lots of flesh (mainly leg) and teeny tiny shorts? They LOVE it, as showcased in our excellent coverage of Charlie Le Mindu seen here and here!

Illustration by Lesley Barnes

London Fashion Week is a breeze by bike, web after starting the day super early at My Beautiful Fashion, troche Fashion Editor Matt Bramford and I hot-stepped it via bike to see Craig Lawrence’s beautiful collection (see Matt’s review here) in the elegant setting of the Portico rooms.

Afterwards I dashed up to Covent Garden before returning for Betty Jackson at 1pm in the BFC tent, ambulance Somerset House. I can’t put my finger on it but something really entrigued me about what it was that Betty Jackson would present, a long standing figure on the London Fashion Week on schedule, this is a designer I know incredibly little about. I appeared to be the only one either, the tent located in the Courtyard of Somerset house was packed to the rafters and there appeared to be a pile up as people dashed towards the front row.

Illustration by Gemma Randall

The collection was beautiful simplicity with Jackson updating 1940′s land girl outfits, the essence of which was most recently seen on Keira Knightly and Sienna Miller in the Dylan Thomas Biopic “The Edge of Love”

It is -especially on a cold London September day- easy to forget you are watching Spring Summer, especially when designers tempt you with instead beautifully thick knits and wool infused trousers.

Illustration by Lesley Barnes

Luckily after lulling me into a gentle consideration of how warm those knit would be. Jackson threw a curve ball with the appearance of a swimsuit and blouse adorned with club tropicana prints before the collection returned to soft muted browns, mind you was rather partial to the above jumpsuit illustrated by Gemma Randall. At this point I glanced around the room – fashion fhows are a great place to watch people’s expressions – I noticed a very beautiful Jo Wood standing (looking completely unperturbed) by the photographers, it must have been a real scrum at the door for Rock Royalty to be left standing.

Illustration by Gemma Randall

A luxurious collection, the shapes were simple but well made and the designer certainly knows how to maintain a crowds attention with the occasional loud print or teeny tiny swimming costumes, interdispersed within sophisticated summer glamour of long simply cut black skirts. Mind you, what is it about all designers obsession with lots of flesh (mainly leg) and teeny tiny shorts? They LOVE it, as showcased in our excellent coverage of Charlie Le Mindu seen here and here!

Illustration by Lesley Barnes

London Fashion Week is a breeze by bike, click after starting the day super early at My Beautiful Fashion, price Fashion Editor Matt Bramford and I hot-peddled it to Craig Lawrence’s beautiful collection (see Matt’s review here) in the elegant setting of the Portico rooms.

After dashing back up to Covent Garden, I returned easily in time for my appointment with Betty Jackson at 1pm in the BFC tent, Somerset House. For reasons I can’t put my finger on, I was (and still am) strangely intrigued about what Betty Jackson would present. A long standing figure on the London Fashion Week on schedule, this is a designer whose name I am familiar with, but whose work I know incredibly little about. It appears I am the only one who is so clueless as the tent was packed to the rafters and the usual dash to seat the VIP’s as the catwalk covering is removed and the lights start to dim caused something of a pile up as people jumped into their alloted positions.

Illustration by Gemma Randall

After the door scrum was settled and the late comers quietly ushered in, the removal of the overhead lighting plunged everyone into darkness as the first model stepped out onto the catwalk. A strange hush descends upon the crowd, the murmur is instantly replaced by scribbling pens, tapping on phones and the constant wizz of a camera’s flash. For S/S 2011 Betty Jackson presented a collection that was beautiful simplicity in her update of 1940′s land girl outfits, the essence of which was most recently seen on Keira Knightly and Sienna Miller in the Dylan Thomas Biopic “The Edge of Love”

It is -especially on a cold London September day- easy to forget you are watching Spring Summer, especially when designers tempt you with instead beautifully thick knits and wool infused trousers.

Illustration by Lesley Barnes

Luckily after lulling me into a gentle consideration of how warm those knit would be. Jackson threw a curve ball with the appearance of a swimsuit and blouse adorned with club tropicana prints before the collection returned to soft muted browns, mind you was rather partial to the above jumpsuit illustrated by Gemma Randall. At this point I glanced around the room – fashion fhows are a great place to watch people’s expressions – I noticed a very beautiful Jo Wood standing (looking completely unperturbed) by the photographers, it must have been a real scrum at the door for Rock Royalty to be left standing.

Illustration by Gemma Randall

A luxurious collection, the shapes were simple but well made and the designer certainly knows how to maintain a crowds attention with the occasional loud print or teeny tiny swimming costumes, interdispersed within sophisticated summer glamour of long simply cut black skirts. Mind you, what is it about all designers obsession with lots of flesh (mainly leg) and teeny tiny shorts? They LOVE it, as showcased in our excellent coverage of Charlie Le Mindu seen here and here!

Illustration by Lesley Barnes

London Fashion Week is a breeze by bike, there after starting the day super early at My Beautiful Fashion, Fashion Editor Matt Bramford and I hot-peddled it to Craig Lawrence’s beautiful collection (see Matt’s review here) in the elegant setting of the Portico rooms.

After dashing back up to Covent Garden, I returned easily in time for my appointment with Betty Jackson at 1pm in the BFC tent, Somerset House. For reasons I can’t put my finger on, I was (and still am) strangely intrigued about what Betty Jackson would present. A long standing figure on the London Fashion Week on schedule, this is a designer whose name I am familiar with, but whose work I know incredibly little about. It appears I am the only one who is so clueless as the tent was packed to the rafters and the usual dash to seat the VIP’s as the catwalk covering is removed and the lights start to dim caused something of a pile up as people jumped into their alloted positions.

Illustration by Gemma Randall

After the door scrum was settled and the late comers quietly ushered in, the removal of the overhead lighting plunged everyone into darkness as the first model stepped out onto the catwalk. A strange hush descends upon the crowd, the murmur is instantly replaced by scribbling pens, tapping on phones and the constant wizz of a camera’s flash. For S/S 2011 Betty Jackson presented a collection that was beautiful simplicity in her update of 1940′s land girl outfits, the essence of which was most recently seen on Keira Knightly and Sienna Miller in the Dylan Thomas Biopic “The Edge of Love”

It is -especially on a cold London September day- easy to forget you are watching Spring Summer, especially when designers tempt you with instead beautifully thick knits and wool infused trousers.

Illustration by Lesley Barnes

Luckily after lulling me into a gentle consideration of how warm those knit would be. Jackson threw a curve ball with the appearance of a swimsuit and blouse adorned with club tropicana prints before the collection returned to soft muted browns, mind you was rather partial to the above jumpsuit illustrated by Gemma Randall. At this point I glanced around the room – fashion fhows are a great place to watch people’s expressions – I noticed a very beautiful Jo Wood standing (looking completely unperturbed) by the photographers, it must have been a real scrum at the door for Rock Royalty to be left standing.

Illustration by Gemma Randall

A luxurious collection, the shapes were simple but well made and the designer certainly knows how to maintain a crowds attention with the occasional loud print or teeny tiny swimming costumes, interdispersed within sophisticated summer glamour of long simply cut black skirts. Mind you, what is it about all designers obsession with lots of flesh (mainly leg) and teeny tiny shorts? They LOVE it, as showcased in our excellent coverage of Charlie Le Mindu seen here and here!

Illustration by Lesley Barnes

London Fashion Week is a breeze by bike and is thoroughly recommended for hot tailing it between the various venues dotted around Bloomsbury. Actually I throughly recommend traveling London by bike, generic one word of warning, once you start it becomes increasingly difficult to pour yourself into the tube. Anyway, I digress and their are posts dedicated to the joys of cycling in the web archive of Amelia’s Magazine, in fact why not read Amelia’s interview with Bobbin Bicycles? But back to day two of London Fashion Week, in which Fashion Editor Matt Bramford and I met super early at My Beautiful Fashion for Bernard Chandran, we hot-peddled it to Craig Lawrence’s beautiful collection in the elegant settings of the Portico Rooms.

After dashing back up to Covent Garden via the trusty bike, I easily returned in time for my first ever appointment with Betty Jackson at 1pm in the BFC tent, Somerset House. For reasons I can’t put my finger on, I was strangely intrigued about what Betty Jackson would present. A long standing figure on the London Fashion Week on schedule, this is a designer whose name I am familiar with, but whose work I know incredibly little about. It appears I am the only one who is so clueless as the tent was packed to the rafters and the usual dash to seat the VIP’s as the catwalk covering is removed and the lights start to dim caused something of a pile up as people jumped into their alloted positions.

Illustration by Gemma Randall

After the door scrum was settled and the late comers quietly ushered in, the removal of the overhead lighting plunged everyone into darkness as the first model stepped out onto the catwalk. A strange hush descends upon the crowd, the murmur is instantly replaced by scribbling pens, tapping on phones and the constant wizz of a camera’s flash. For S/S 2011 Betty Jackson presented a collection that was beautiful simplicity in her update of 1940′s land girl outfits, the essence of which was most recently seen on Keira Knightly and Sienna Miller in the Dylan Thomas Biopic “The Edge of Love”

It is -especially on a cold London September day- easy to forget you are watching Spring Summer, especially when designers tempt you with instead beautifully thick knits and wool infused trousers.

Illustration by Lesley Barnes

Luckily after lulling me into a gentle consideration of how warm those knit would be. Jackson threw a curve ball with the appearance of a swimsuit and blouse adorned with club tropicana prints before the collection returned to soft muted browns, mind you was rather partial to the above jumpsuit illustrated by Gemma Randall. At this point I glanced around the room – fashion fhows are a great place to watch people’s expressions – I noticed a very beautiful Jo Wood standing (looking completely unperturbed) by the photographers, it must have been a real scrum at the door for Rock Royalty to be left standing.

Illustration by Gemma Randall

A luxurious collection, the shapes were simple but well made and the designer certainly knows how to maintain a crowds attention with the occasional loud print or teeny tiny swimming costumes, interdispersed within sophisticated summer glamour of long simply cut black skirts. Mind you, what is it about all designers obsession with lots of flesh (mainly leg) and teeny tiny shorts? They LOVE it, as showcased in our excellent coverage of Charlie Le Mindu seen here and here!

Lako Bukia fashion illustrations
With illustrations by Andrea Peterson.

It was a bum fight at Vauxhall Fashion Scout, viagra 60mg as hoards of people turned out for one of the most highly anticipated collections of the schedule – Lako Bukia’s first runway collection ‘Surati’ S/S 11.

Lako Bukia looked to her homeland, with a collection that was ‘dedicated to Georgian culture’ (as in the country, not Jane Austen) and inspired by Soviet Union Architecture. The obligatory Soviet Red was there in full swing, with bold, all-red outfits opening the show.

LFW-LakoBukia-Andrea-Peterson

But this was a romantic collection, despite the model’s severe slicked-back buns. Instead of brutal tower blocks we had sharp, structured shoulders on every jacket, and instead of a bleak grey landscape, she gave us a soft palette of blue, pink and beige. I was whisked away by the dreamy drop-waist dresses, and full skirts in chiffon, crepe and organza, and can see why her pieces have been snapped up by buyers already – the organza ‘cage’ dress – sheer but with leather trimming was divine.

And the accessories! Bukia collaborated with Georgian artist Aleksandre Mikadza to create handmade glass and stone pendants, and the models strutted down the catwalk on a very soviet take on Mary Janes – finally someone paid attention to the shoes!

Categories ,accessories, ,Andrea Peterson, ,artist, ,catwalk show, ,fashion, ,georgia, ,lako bukia, ,lfw, ,london, ,London Fashion Week, ,mary janes, ,review, ,S/S 2011, ,Vauxhall Fashion Scout, ,Womenswear

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Amelia’s Magazine | London Fashion Week S/S 2011 Presentation Review: Antipodium

FADAwards-the tightrope walker-Florence Melrose by-Barbara-Ana-G
The Tightrope Walker – an illustration of a dress designed by Florence Melrose, medications illustrated by Barbara Ana Gomez.

I’m a bit rubbish when it actually comes to checking what’s what during fashion week – I will generally go to most things that I’m invited to on the grounds that if someone has bothered to invite me then I should generally return the honour by actually turning up. Not so most magazine editors I might add – many was the time that I would swan into a fashion show under the guise of Katie Grand at The Face. She never went, information pills and yours truly got the golden tickets.

FAD awards SS2011 - abi daker
Dress by Rebecca Glyn-Blanco of Camden School for Girls. Illustration by Abigail Daker.

FADAwards Keep it secret-by-Barbara-Ana-Gomez
Keep it Secret – illustration of a dress by Sinead Cloonan from City & Islington College by Barbara Ana Gomez.

And as I’ve already mentioned I don’t do queues – not in Tescos, buy and certainly not during fashion week. To this end my heart sank as I rounded the corner to Freemasons’ Hall and found a line of people streaming down the street. What was this FAD awards malarkey anyway? Heading to the front of the queue I waggled my ticket at an unknown PR person and hoped for the best, so was somewhat surprised to be informed in hushed tones that I was a VIP and could go straight on through. Upstairs in one of the many architecturally fabulous chambers, Matt and I sipped on sweet fizzy stuff as we tried to figure out what this was all about.

FAD-Awards-sketches-Amelias-Magazine-by-kila_kitu
FAD-Awards 2010-Kila Kitu
Dress by Emily Rogers of Salford City College as illustrated by Kila Kitu.

Apparently we’ve been very supportive of FAD in the past, and once I’d looked up our previous coverage it did suddenly all ring a bell. But I wasn’t quite prepared for the sheer unadulterated upbeat joy of this event. Right in the thick of a hectic fashion week it’s a true testament to the achievement of this organisation that I could sit through yet another long catwalk show and come out the other end beaming with goodwill.

LFW_FAD_Awards_Abigail_Nottingham
The European Fashion Designer award winning dress from Paul Vasileff and Shahira Bakhoum. Illustrated by Abigail Nottingham.

FADAwards Flower-Rebecca Glyn-Blanco by-Barbara-Ana-G
Rebecca Glyn-Blanco by Barbara Ana Gomez.

Just to recap quickly, FAD stands for Fashion Awareness Direct and it is a charity that aims to empower young people – as the brochure says “Fashion is a great way to connect with young people from different backgrounds, to give them confidence and raise their aspirations for the future.”

FAD awards SS2011 - Adam Preece by Abi Daker
Adam Preece by Abigail Daker.

LFW_FAD_awards Chelsey Ward by Abigail-Nottingham
Chelsey Ward by Abigail Nottingham.

Last year we covered the undergraduates awards show, but this year we were in for a much younger treat: the FAD Junior Awards showcased the designs of finalists chosen from 130 teenagers aged 16-19. Yes dear reader, you may well have to keep pinching yourself as you take a look through the images. I know I did, and I was sitting right there when they paraded past. Created over the course of five days at the University of East London with the help of an experienced team of tutors, the outfits put together by these young designers would put many graduates to shame.

LFW_FAD_Awards Karmen-Marie Parker by Abigail_Nottingham
Karmen-Marie Parker by Abigail Nottingham.

FAD-Awards-Natalie Goreham by-kila_kitu
Natalie Goreham by Kila Kitu.

To start off the evening’s events previous winner Prash Muraleetharan took to the stage with a bit of confident advice, endearingly delivered. “It’s what you do with this moment which determines a winner…. so get upstairs and network,” he advised, somewhat sagely. At the end he winked. And I’m sure he winked at me. Blimey… what a charmer… it’s quite hard to countenance that Prash must still be a teenager, and yet he already runs his own fashion label with a website and everything.

FAD junior awards 2010 photo by Amelia Gregory
Prash Muraleetharan dispels his words of wisdom at the start of the ceremony. All photography by Amelia Gregory.

After the catwalk show we had speeches from the sleek Susan Aubrey-Cound of M&S and Helen Carter of UEL, followed by the prizegiving by the extremely fabulous Zandra Rhodes, who is *the cutest* when she smiles! The winners and their parents looked so overwhelmed it really did warm the cockles of my jaded fashionista heart.

Zandra-Rhodes-FAD-Awards-2010-Antonia-Parker-Amelias-Magazine-A
Zandra Rhodes by Antonia Parker. I wuv her.

FAD junior awards 2010 photo by Amelia Gregory
Paul Vasileff and Shahira Bakhoum of Milan step up first to take the prize for the European Fashion Designer Competition, which was the culmination of a two year project.

FAD junior awards 2010 photo by Amelia Gregory
Karmen-Marie Parker with her winning design shortly before she burst into tears… aw, bless.

FAD junior awards 2010 photo by Amelia Gregory
Andre Augusto: pattern cutting award winner.

FAD junior awards 2010 photo by Amelia Gregory
Research award winner Sarah Kilkenny.

FAD junior awards 2010 photo by Amelia Gregory
17 year old David Short – the first boy to become overall winner and a proper little fashionista in the making.

Within this blog you’ll find my favourite pieces to hit the runway – and just remember, they were all designed and made by 16-19 year olds. Quite astonishing I’m sure you’ll agree.

FAD junior awards 2010 Shomari Williams photo by Amelia Gregory
Shomari Williams.

FAD junior awards 2010 Emily Rogers photo by Amelia Gregory
Emily Rogers.

FAD junior awards 2010 Charlie Ibouillie photo by Amelia Gregory
Charlie Ibouillie.

FAD junior awards 2010 Sinead Cloonan photo by Amelia Gregory
Sinead Cloonan.

FAD junior awards 2010 European winners photo by Amelia Gregory
FAD junior awards 2010 European winners photo by Amelia Gregory
The winner of the European competition.

FAD junior awards 2010 Rebecca Glyn-Blanco photo by Amelia Gregory
Rebecca Glyn-Blanco.

FAD junior awards 2010 Natalie Goreham photo by Amelia Gregory
Natalie Goreham.

FAD junior awards 2010 Florence Melrose photo by Amelia Gregory
Florence Melrose.

FAD junior awards 2010 Misbah Siddique photo by Amelia Gregory
Misbah Siddique.

FAD junior awards 2010 Zandra Rhodes photo by Amelia Gregory
And another completely gratuitous shot of Zandra because this post isn’t long enough already. Because I WUV HER.

FADAwards-the tightrope walker-Florence Melrose by-Barbara-Ana-G
The Tightrope Walker – an illustration of a dress designed by Florence Melrose, ed illustrated by Barbara Ana Gomez.

I’m a bit rubbish when it actually comes to checking what’s what during fashion week – I will generally go to most things that I’m invited to on the grounds that if someone has bothered to invite me then I should generally return the honour by actually turning up. Not so most magazine editors I might add – many was the time that I would swan into a fashion show under the guise of Katie Grand at The Face. She never went, information pills and yours truly got the golden tickets.

FAD awards SS2011 - abi daker
Dress by Rebecca Glyn-Blanco of Camden School for Girls. Illustration by Abigail Daker.

FADAwards Keep it secret-by-Barbara-Ana-Gomez
Keep it Secret – illustration of a dress by Sinead Cloonan from City & Islington College by Barbara Ana Gomez.

And as I’ve already mentioned I don’t do queues – not in Tescos, and certainly not during fashion week. To this end my heart sank as I rounded the corner to Freemasons’ Hall and found a line of people streaming down the street. What was this FAD awards malarkey anyway? Heading to the front of the queue I waggled my ticket at an unknown PR person and hoped for the best, so was somewhat surprised to be informed in hushed tones that I was a VIP and could go straight on through. Upstairs in one of the many architecturally fabulous chambers, Matt and I sipped on sweet fizzy stuff as we tried to figure out what this was all about.

FAD-Awards-sketches-Amelias-Magazine-by-kila_kitu
FAD-Awards 2010-Kila Kitu
Dress by Yashodah Rodgers as illustrated by Kila Kitu.

Apparently we’ve been very supportive of FAD in the past, and once I’d looked up our previous coverage it did suddenly all ring a bell. But I wasn’t quite prepared for the sheer unadulterated upbeat joy of this event. Right in the thick of a hectic fashion week it’s a true testament to the achievement of this organisation that I could sit through yet another long catwalk show and come out the other end beaming with goodwill.

LFW_FAD_Awards_Abigail_Nottingham
The European Fashion Designer award winning dress from Paul Vasileff and Shahira Bakhoum. Illustrated by Abigail Nottingham.

FADAwards Flower-Rebecca Glyn-Blanco by-Barbara-Ana-G
Rebecca Glyn-Blanco by Barbara Ana Gomez.

Just to recap quickly, FAD stands for Fashion Awareness Direct and it is a charity that aims to empower young people – as the brochure says “Fashion is a great way to connect with young people from different backgrounds, to give them confidence and raise their aspirations for the future.”

FAD awards SS2011 - Adam Preece by Abi Daker
Adam Preece by Abigail Daker.

LFW_FAD_awards Chelsey Ward by Abigail-Nottingham
Chelsey Ward by Abigail Nottingham.

Last year we covered the undergraduates awards show, but this year we were in for a much younger treat: the FAD Junior Awards showcased the designs of finalists chosen from 130 teenagers aged 16-19. Yes dear reader, you may well have to keep pinching yourself as you take a look through the images. I know I did, and I was sitting right there when they paraded past. Created over the course of five days at the University of East London with the help of an experienced team of tutors, the outfits put together by these young designers would put many graduates to shame.

LFW_FAD_Awards Karmen-Marie Parker by Abigail_Nottingham
Karmen-Marie Parker by Abigail Nottingham.

FAD-Awards-Natalie Goreham by-kila_kitu
Natalie Goreham by Kila Kitu.

To start off the evening’s events previous winner Prash Muraleetharan took to the stage with a bit of confident advice, endearingly delivered. “It’s what you do with this moment which determines a winner…. so get upstairs and network,” he advised, somewhat sagely. At the end he winked. And I’m sure he winked at me. Blimey… what a charmer… it’s quite hard to countenance that Prash must still be a teenager, and yet he already runs his own fashion label with a website and everything.

FAD junior awards 2010 photo by Amelia Gregory
Prash Muraleetharan dispels his words of wisdom at the start of the ceremony. All photography by Amelia Gregory.

After the V&A inspired catwalk show we had speeches from the sleek Susan Aubrey-Cound of M&S and Lucy Jones of UEL, followed by the prizegiving by the extremely fabulous Zandra Rhodes, who is *the cutest* when she smiles! The winners and their parents looked so overwhelmed it really did warm the cockles of my jaded fashionista heart.

Zandra-Rhodes-FAD-Awards-2010-Antonia-Parker-Amelias-Magazine-A
Zandra Rhodes by Antonia Parker. I wuv her.

FAD junior awards 2010 photo by Amelia Gregory
Paul Vasileff and Shahira Bakhoum of Milan step up first to take the prize for the European Fashion Designer Competition, which was the culmination of a two year project.

FAD junior awards 2010 photo by Amelia Gregory
Karmen-Marie Parker with her winning design shortly before she burst into tears… aw, bless.

FAD junior awards 2010 photo by Amelia Gregory
Andre Augusto: pattern cutting award winner.

FAD junior awards 2010 photo by Amelia Gregory
Research award winner Sarah Kilkenny.

FAD junior awards 2010 photo by Amelia Gregory
17 year old David Short – the first boy to become overall winner and a proper little fashionista in the making.

Within this blog you’ll find my favourite pieces to hit the runway – and just remember, they were all designed and made by 16-19 year olds. Quite astonishing I’m sure you’ll agree.

FAD junior awards 2010 Shomari Williams photo by Amelia Gregory
Shomari Williams.

FAD junior awards 2010 Emily Rogers photo by Amelia Gregory
Yashodah Rodgers.

FAD junior awards 2010 Charlie Ibouillie photo by Amelia Gregory
Charlie Ibouillie.

FAD junior awards 2010 Sinead Cloonan photo by Amelia Gregory
Sinead Cloonan.

FAD junior awards 2010 European winners photo by Amelia Gregory
FAD junior awards 2010 European winners photo by Amelia Gregory
The winner of the European competition.

FAD junior awards 2010 Rebecca Glyn-Blanco photo by Amelia Gregory
Rebecca Glyn-Blanco.

FAD junior awards 2010 Natalie Goreham photo by Amelia Gregory
Natalie Goreham.

FAD junior awards 2010 Florence Melrose photo by Amelia Gregory
Florence Melrose.

FAD junior awards 2010 Misbah Siddique photo by Amelia Gregory
Misbah Siddique.

FAD junior awards 2010 Zandra Rhodes photo by Amelia Gregory
And another completely gratuitous shot of Zandra because this post isn’t long enough already. Because I WUV HER.

LFW-Antipodium-Andrea-Peterson
Antipodium by Andrea Peterson.

Antipodium was a shop that used to stock Amelia’s Magazine many a moon ago… run by Ozzies, stuff it has always championed Ozzie design. and apparently cake. At the Antipodium show at the Portico Rooms, visit Somerset House we were served up some delicious delicacies from down under.

Antipodium SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
Homemade cake: always good. And to think, unhealthy not a cupcake in sight *thank god*

Antipodium SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
Antipodium SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
Antipodium SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
Antipodium SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
All photography by Amelia Gregory.

LFW-Antipodium by Jo Cheung
Antipodium by Jo Cheung.

Antipodium by Lisa Stannard
Antipodium by Lisa Stannard.

Antipodium the label grew out of the boutique as it found itself home to all sorts of creative types. Owner Ashe Peacock launched the brand in 2006 with former intern Geoffrey J. Finch, and since then it seems they’ve been quietly growing something of a reputation for its easy going style – a result of their down-to-earth Australian background.

Antipodium SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
Antipodium SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
Antipodium SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
Antipodium SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
LFW-Antipodium-Andrea-Peterson
Antipodium by Andrea Peterson.

For S/S 2011 Antipodium took the “brutalist beauty of the Barbican hothouse as a starting point” – possibly the reason for the backdrop of huge potted plants. Filtered through the steamy social mores of the 1970s all sorts of scurrilous goings-on were imagined in the nooks and crannies of this iconic building.

Antipodium SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
Antipodium SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
Antipodium SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
Antipodium SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
LFW-Antipodium by Paolo-Caravello
Antipodium by Paolo Caravello.

In reality this meant a cleanly classic collection spiced up with great little details, shown on a range of young models who had obviously been instructed to act louche. This for me is where models fail – they’re too young to be convincing, to act anything other than the most basic of parts. But this didn’t distract from my enjoyment of the hugely successful collection – after all I didn’t read the accompanying bumpf until just now.

Antipodium SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
Antipodium SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
Antipodium SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
Antipodium SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
LFW-Antipodium by Jo Cheung
Antipodium by Jo Cheung.

Wearing a muted colour palette of mossy greens, khaki, pale blue, aubergine, dusky pink and fawn the models paraded to the music of two DJs hidden in the corner. Stand outs were the clever use of fabrics and detailing; waffly knitwear, silky shirting, the subtle A shape in the back of a man’s beautifully cut coat. But best of all had to be the prints: commissioned from Australian born (of course) New York artist Craig Redman, these featured double-take patterns: oversized limbs, bespectacled butterflies and strange blooms. Can you tell I trained as a printed textile designer? Always the colour and patterns for me… Fabulous stuff.

Antipodium SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
Antipodium SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
Antipodium SS2011 photo by Amelia Gregory
Antipodium-by-Lisa-Stannard
Antipodium by Lisa Stannard.

LFW-Antipodium by Jo Cheung
LFW-Antipodium by Jo Cheung
Antipodium by Jo Cheung.

Categories ,1970s, ,Andrea Peterson, ,Antipodium, ,Ashe Peacock, ,Australian, ,barbican, ,Cake, ,Craig Redman, ,Geoffrey J. Finch, ,Jo Cheung, ,Lisa Stannard, ,Paolo Caravello, ,Portico Rooms, ,Somerset House

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Amelia’s Magazine | London Fashion Week A/W 2011 Catwalk Review: Charlie Le Mindu (by Amelia)

Charlie Le Mindu by Andrea Peterson aka Artist Andrea
Charlie Le Mindu by Andrea Peterson aka Artist Andrea.

Charlie Le Mindu has already done massive headpieces and copious nudity… what could possibly be next? How about dripping blood, nurse Nazi references and CUNT (sprayed onto the back of a model’s head)? Yes, more about this and more was to be our Sunday morning treat at Berlin Syndrome, a show inspired by the WWII decadence of the German Third Reich.

Charlie Le Mindu. Photography by Tim Adey
Charlie Le Mindu. Photography by Tim Adey.

Charlie Le Mindu by Dan Stafford
Charlie Le Mindu by Dan Stafford.

Each season a Charlie Le Mindu ticket grows that little bit hotter… and the queues of people desperate to view his inimitable mix of genius, fantasy and fannies grows ever more clamourous. So it was that whilst waiting for Jazzkatze to start I made a judgement, made my excuses, and headed over to the tiny On/Off venue. These things happen. I knew it would be totally worth it.

Charlie Le Mindu by Andrea Peterson aka Artist Andrea
Charlie Le Mindu by Andrea Peterson aka Artist Andrea.

But first I had to battle my way into a decent seat. Hot avante garde fashion tends to attract a lot of extravagant characters, each trying to out-outfit the next one.

YouTube Preview Image
Out Outfit You by Bourgeois & Maurice.

So it was that I found myself just a few bodies down from fashion doyenne Daphne Guinnessallegedly attending her only show this season – and a rare LFW sighting of Diane Pernet.

Charlie Le Mindu Berlin Syndrome by Emma Jardine
Charlie Le Mindu Berlin Syndrome by Emma Jardine.

Across the way club kid Daniel Lismore looked uncomfortably squished in one of the huge froufrou contraptions that constitutes his “look”. The delightful (and talented) Natasha Khan of Bat for Lashes looked wonderfully normal in comparison – and had to fight for a front row spot.

Charlie Le Mindu A/W 2011 Berlin Syndrome. Photography by Amelia GregoryCharlie Le Mindu A/W 2011 Berlin Syndrome. Photography by Amelia GregoryCharlie Le Mindu A/W 2011 Berlin Syndrome. Photography by Amelia GregoryCharlie Le Mindu A/W 2011 Berlin Syndrome. Photography by Amelia GregoryCharlie Le Mindu A/W 2011 Berlin Syndrome. Photography by Amelia GregoryCharlie Le Mindu A/W 2011 Berlin Syndrome. Photography by Amelia Gregory

Kap Bambino provided the intense soundtrack to this show, a mash up of melodic vocals, pig squeals and a grimy off-kilter baseline. Our first treat? A stripper, dripping with blood from her Violence headgear to her vampirish talons. Her only accessory was an ancient looking metal bag, slung nonchalantly from her shoulder on a thin piece of chain.

Charlie Le Mindu A/W 2011 Berlin Syndrome. Photography by Amelia GregoryCharlie Le Mindu A/W 2011 Berlin Syndrome. Photography by Amelia GregoryCharlie Le Mindu A/W 2011 Berlin Syndrome. Photography by Amelia GregoryCharlie Le Mindu A/W 2011 Berlin Syndrome. Photography by Amelia GregoryCharlie Le Mindu A/W 2011 Berlin Syndrome. Photography by Amelia GregoryCharlie Le Mindu A/W 2011 Berlin Syndrome. Photography by Amelia GregoryCharlie Le Mindu A/W 2011 Berlin Syndrome. Photography by Amelia GregoryCharlie Le Mindu A/W 2011 Berlin Syndrome. Photography by Amelia Gregory
Charlie Le Mindu A/W 2011 Berlin Syndrome. Photography by Amelia Gregory.

She was followed onto the catwalk by a giant mohican worn with plastic cape and lacy shorts – a cross of gaffa tape the only nod to modesty. More buttery lace, more plastic, more fringing and beading on both men and women. Make up was pale, deathly, fittingly. From the front a plastic fluffy fringed cape looked pervily demure, arms bound down to the sides. From the back it revealed a spray painted phallus and more that I cannot read.

Charlie Le Mindu by Madi
Charlie Le Mindu by Madi.

Charlie Le Mindu A/W 2011 Berlin Syndrome. Photography by Amelia GregoryCharlie Le Mindu A/W 2011 Berlin Syndrome. Photography by Amelia GregoryCharlie Le Mindu A/W 2011 Berlin Syndrome. Photography by Amelia GregoryCharlie Le Mindu A/W 2011 Berlin Syndrome. Photography by Amelia GregoryCharlie Le Mindu A/W 2011 Berlin Syndrome. Photography by Amelia GregoryCharlie Le Mindu A/W 2011 Berlin Syndrome. Photography by Amelia GregoryCharlie Le Mindu A/W 2011 by The Lovely WarsCharlie Le Mindu A/W 2011 by The Lovely Wars
Charlie Le Mindu A/W 2011 by The Lovely Wars.

A moderately wearable lace belted maxi coat was followed by more exposed boobs and a gas mask with a waterfall of hair extruding from the mouth like an alien intervention. More hair as fur, smudged red lips, a smile from a knowing model as she pounded towards the thickly layered ranks of photographers.

Charlie Le Mindu Berlin Syndrome by Natsuki Otani
Charlie Le Mindu Berlin Syndrome by Natsuki Otani.

Charlie Le Mindu Finale Piece by LJG Art & Illustration
Charlie Le Mindu Finale Piece by LJG Art & Illustration.

And finally the denouement, a huge white eagle – a reference to the Third Reich insignia – clutching a blonde be-wigged head, the bird trailing lace and blood to the floor. It was a trail that followed the models back stage as the show ended to the sounds of a porcine massacre and Charlie Le Mindu took his curtain bow in a butcher’s apron, hands bloody. I glanced anxiously over to stylist Tamara Cincik, who was protectively cradling her pregnant belly.

Charlie Le Mindu A/W 2011 Berlin Syndrome. Photography by Amelia GregoryCharlie Le Mindu A/W 2011 Berlin Syndrome. Photography by Amelia GregoryCharlie Le Mindu A/W 2011 Berlin Syndrome. Photography by Amelia GregoryCharlie Le Mindu A/W 2011 Berlin Syndrome. Photography by Amelia GregoryCharlie Le Mindu A/W 2011 Berlin Syndrome. Photography by Amelia GregoryCharlie Le Mindu A/W 2011 Berlin Syndrome. Photography by Amelia GregoryCharlie Le Mindu A/W 2011 Berlin Syndrome. Photography by Amelia GregoryCharlie Le Mindu A/W 2011 Berlin Syndrome. Photography by Amelia GregoryCharlie Le Mindu A/W 2011 Berlin Syndrome. Photography by Amelia GregoryCharlie Le Mindu A/W 2011 Berlin Syndrome. Photography by Amelia GregoryCharlie Le Mindu A/W 2011 Berlin Syndrome. Photography by Amelia GregoryCharlie Le Mindu A/W 2011 Berlin Syndrome. Photography by Amelia Gregory
Charlie Le Mindu A/W 2011 Berlin Syndrome. Photography by Amelia Gregory.

You can read Katie Antoniou’s earlier blog about the same show here, and see more work by Andrea Peterson in Amelia’s Compendium of Fashion Illustration. There is also a lovely blog featuring Andrea Peterson at work on the creation of her Charlie Le Mindu painting right here.

Categories ,ACOFI, ,Amelia’s Compendium of Fashion Illustration, ,Andrea Peterson, ,Ani Saunders, ,Anna Trevelyan, ,Artist Andrea, ,Bat for Lashes, ,berlin, ,Berlin Syndrome, ,Blood, ,Bourgeois & Maurice, ,Charlie le Mindu, ,CUNT, ,Dan Stafford, ,Daniel Lismore, ,Daphne Guinness, ,Diane Pernet, ,Eagle, ,Emma Jardine, ,Hair, ,Insignia, ,Jazzkatze, ,Kap Bambino, ,Katie Antoniou, ,LJG Art & Illustration, ,Madi, ,Madi Illustrates, ,Natasha Khan, ,Natsuki Otani, ,Nudity, ,onoff, ,Out Outfit You, ,Plastic, ,Strippers, ,Tamara Cincik, ,The Lovely Wars, ,Third Reich, ,Tim Adey, ,Wigs, ,WWII

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Amelia’s Magazine | London Fashion Week A/W 2011 Catwalk Review: Jasper Garvida


Illustration by Andrea Peterson, doctor look aka Artist Andrea.

I was very nervous about Jasper’s show, viagra 40mg as I adored his Spring/Summer collection so much that I was worried my expectations would be too high. But I wasn’t disappointed- the sound of rainfall set the mood for the show, and the slats of the more theatrical pieces replicated this noise as the models walked. One maxi-dress was tied at the waist with a belt hung with oversized keys, which clinked together as she walked. The inclusion of sounds in a catwalk show helps to make it all seem more three dimensional. Reworked, instrumental covers of 90s tunes by the likes of Nirvana also created a great soundtrack.

Whilst a number of the dresses were so ostentatious – and according to reports from friends of mine backstage, so incredibly heavy – that they are unlikely to be worn by the likes of you and me, Jasper cleverly takes the textures of these pieces and works them into accessories like clutch bags and statement ruff-style necklaces that are much easier to integrate into your real-life wardrobe.


Illustration by Andrea Peterson, aka Artist Andrea.

Inspired by the novel ‘Soie’ by Alessandro Baricco about a European man who becomes enchanted with the East, there is a distinct oriental feel to the colour palette and the silhouettes.Lace dresses with thigh-high slits and completely backless, full length evening gowns added to the sensuality of the silk and lace.

Iconic Fornasetti-inspired prints make fantastic statement pieces, as well as a knitted maxi number, the knitwear trend instigated by the likes of Craig Lawrence and Mark Fast showing no sign of dying. The hair was elegantly side-swept in a vintage-inspired up-do; a look complimented by Lucas Jack drop earrings.

It’s no coincidence that my favourite shows on Friday, and so far of LFW altogether, are the two that featured lots of colour, a few show-stopping, theatrical pieces, gorgeous vintage-inspired prints, and silhouettes designed for a womanly shape.I’m referring to Prophetik and Jasper Garvida. However, both shows also share the same single criticism from me – these are sexy designs, can you please put them on women with sexier figures? They would look BETTER. Honest. The corsets of Prophetik were desperate for some heaving bosoms a la costume drama, whilst some of Jasper’s models were painfully thin. It’s something I noticed at his last show too, and I’ve heard the same feedback from a number of people, even the illustrators I sent my photos to were shocked. Jasper is represented by one of the loveliest, most down-to-earth PR companies around, so I really hope they pass thes comments on to him, as its really the only criticism I have of the show.

All photography by Katie Antoniou.

You can see more of Andrea Peterson’s work in Amelia’s Compendium of Fashion Illustration. You can read Amelia’s review of the show here.

Categories ,A/W 2011, ,ACOFI, ,Amelia’s Compendium of Fashion Illustration, ,Andrea Peterson, ,Artist Andrea, ,fornasetti, ,jasper garvida, ,le baiser, ,London Fashion Week A/W 2011, ,Lucas Jack

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