Crossing the Blues, University of the Nations, Social Work and Education, Shop Clothes Online, Radiology Information Social Work and Education Posted by Fashion Editor at Large

Sarah Burton photographed at the McQueen show for Spring/Summer 2011

So Sarah Burton (whose full statement is below) designed the Royal Weddiing dress after all the speculation surrounding her and it, and the flat denials issued by Burton herself. The Sunday Times was right all along. It leaves me wondering how did the Sunday Times get the story? Did the Palace leak news that the house of Alexander McQueen was creating the dress to the Times in order to divert interest away from a sordid story on Prince Andrew published further into the paper that same day? Or did the leak stem, as is also rumoured, from an unguarded comment made by the CEO of Alexander McQueen, Jonathan Akeroyd, to someone who knows Sunday Times editor John Witherow? I hope to get the full story some day in the future. 

(updated May 3 2011) Have been informed by a well placed source that the accidental leak to the Sunday Times about who designed the wedding dress came not from the McQueen business but from the Catherine Middleton camp. Sara Parker-Bowles? Sara is the fashion writer who married Camilla's son Tom wearing none other than Alexander McQueen.
Either way, the result is still wonderful. What a brilliant outcome for Sarah Burton and the Alexander McQueen business. All the darkness generated by Lee McQueen's suicide has been oblilterated by the purity and lightness of todays Royal nuptials leaving the brand Alexander McQueen as clean and shiny as a new pin. Though at the Grazia office today we were thinking that  no matter who Catherine Middleton had hired to create the dress, the actual gown would have been essentially the same, as it is clear this is the dress she wanted. However the newly minted Duchess of Cambridge most certainly chose exactly the right woman for the job.

Add to this that Alexander McQueen: Savage Beauty, an exhibition highlighting his career will be launched at the annual Costume Institute Benefit Gala, known as the Met Ball, on May 2nd, (open to the public from May 4th to July 31st) and McQueen is the hottest luxury fashion house in the world right now.

The soon-to-be Duchess of Cambridge emerges to show her Sarah Burton for Alexander McQueen wedding dress for the first time

London, 29 April 2010 - Sarah Burton, Creative Director at Alexander McQueen made the following comments regarding her role as designer of Catherine Middleton’s wedding dress:

“It has been the experience of a lifetime to work with Catherine Middleton to create her wedding dress, and I have enjoyed every moment of it. It was such an incredible honour to be asked, and I am so proud of what we and the Alexander McQueen team have created. I am delighted that the dress represents the best of British craftsmanship. Alexander McQueen’s designs are all about bringing contrasts together to create startling and beautiful clothes and I hope that by marrying traditional fabrics and lacework, with a modern structure and design we have created a beautiful dress for Catherine on her wedding day.

“The last few months have been very exciting and an incredible experience for my team and I as we have worked closely with Catherine to create this dress under conditions of the strictest secrecy. Understandably, Catherine has been very keen to keep the details of her dress a secret, which is every bride’s prerogative, and we gave an undertaking to keep our role confidential until the day of the wedding.

“Catherine looked absolutely stunning today, and the team at Alexander McQueen are very proud of what we have created. The dress was just one component of a spectacular day, and I do not think it is appropriate to comment any further beyond saying that I personally am very grateful and honoured to have been given the opportunity to work on this project, and I wish TRH The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge every good wish for the future.”

[please note: in line with Sarah Burton’s desire not to comment further, neither she nor any other company representative is giving interviews today or in the coming days]
Sarah Burton at Alexander McQueens latest collection for Autumn/Winter 2011

Burton was raised in Manchester, and studied Print Fashion at London’s Central St Martins. It was while at St Martins that she interviewed for a years placement at McQueen, which at the time was based in a little studio in Hoxton square. She worked alongside McQueen for 14 years, which made her a natural choice for taking over the label’s creative direction following his passing. A big name designer could have been brought in from another, rival label. However, the risk was that McQueen would lose the essence of what Lee McQueen had built into his design over the years: the theatricality, intricacy, flamboyance and movement inherent in all his garments. Sarah is married to photographer David Burton.

Photos: Christopher Moore/; AP


Crossing the Blues, University of the Nations, Social Work and Education, Shop Clothes Online, Radiology Information Social Work and Education Posted by Fashion Editor at Large
Olivier Rousteing, the new head of design at Balmain.

NEWS JUST IN: This beautiful man is now in charge of Balmain, following the departure last month of Christophe Decarnin due to health problems.  In one swoop the sobriquet of "worlds most beautiful fashion designer" has left one Olivier (Theyskens) and is now firmly pinned to the above, Mr Olivier Rousteing.

Paris, April 26th 2011. The house of Balmain is pleased to announce the appointment of Olivier Rousteing as its new Designer. Mr. Rousteing will supervise the design and development of the brand’s men’s and women’s ready-to-wear collections.

Rousteing is currently in charge of the Women’s Wear design studio at Balmain, a position he has held since 2009. Before joining Balmain, Rousteing worked for five years at Roberto Cavalli, where he was promoted to the position of Designer for the women’s and men’s ready-to-wear collections.

Olivier Rousteing was born in France and raised in Bordeaux. He completed his fashion studies at Paris’s École Supérieure Des Arts Et Techniques De La Mode (ESMOD) in 2003.

RIP Poly Styrene

Crossing the Blues, University of the Nations, Social Work and Education, Shop Clothes Online, Radiology Information Social Work and Education Posted by Fashion Editor at Large
Marianne Joan Elliott-Said (3 July 1957 – 25 April 2011)

X Ray Specs, by Falcon Stuart, 1978

Poly Styrene said the X Ray Spex were about "not trying to be like anybody else, but being yourself. High energy, youthful music, creativity. Better than expressing yourself through crime. Being in a band, saying what you want. It was better than being in a girl gang."

My sentiments exactly.


Crossing the Blues, University of the Nations, Social Work and Education, Shop Clothes Online, Radiology Information Social Work and Education Posted by Fashion Junior at Large

If 2010 was the year of the aviator jacket, then AW 2011 heralds the arrival of an equally massive outerwear trend. The Fash Ed and I have dubbed it 'the hybrids' and this particular breed of outerwear cropped up in so many of our favourite collections, in various guises. This look is a natural evolution from the leather sleeved Burberry trench from SS11, which spawned a thousand imitations.

Burberry SS11

For next season, the hybrids are still focused on sleeve detailing, but this time they are furry, fluffy, silky, shiny...and so on! The especially furry ones have been christened 'gorilla arms', and are something of a serious style statement.

 Carven AW11 (above and below). The ultra-commercial label produced some of the best hybrid pieces for next season, including this coat, which is a fun variation on a wool trench.

 Etro AW11. Not a label that is normally top of our list to check out, surprisingly Etro had some of the best hybrid jackets, including the patent/wool combo and some particularly great gorilla arms.

 JW Anderson AW11. Jonathan's first womenswear collection included some amazing hybrids, all making use of traditional heritage fabrics. Paisley quilted arms, a tweed body and a fluffy hood? Only at JW Anderson could that look good!

Chanel AW11 had their own unique take on hybrids. Karl showed cape/jackets, which were pretty crazy, but this beautiful blazer/tweed number was a more wearable option.

Jaeger AW11 honed in on the collars of outerwear, where they took on a whole life of their own. Collars in chunky, furry fabric morphed into scarves.

Something tells us this is just the beginning. Keep your eyes peeled for hybrids - they are going to be everywhere!


Crossing the Blues, University of the Nations, Social Work and Education, Shop Clothes Online, Radiology Information Social Work and Education Posted by Fashion Junior at Large

We've got a somewhat rose-tinted view of the world! One colour is single handedly taking over fashion land, so have a look at our pick of the pinks. 


Crossing the Blues, University of the Nations, Social Work and Education, Shop Clothes Online, Radiology Information Social Work and Education Posted by Fashion Junior at Large

The newly founded Ella Dror PR held their AW11 press day on Wednesday at the St Martins Lane Hotel, to show off the new collections from their select group of creative clients.

Charlie de Mindu was on hand with a pop-up salon, busy creating his signature hairstyles, and there were an array of inspiring collections on display from young designers such as Craig Lawrence, Sorcha O Raghallaigh and up-coming milliner Piers Atkinson.

Craig Lawrence AW11
Sorcha O Raghallaigh SS11 shot for Dazed and Confused

Piers Atkinson AW11 (the lookbook, below, took my breath away) 

The powerhouse team behind this dazzling display are two young people who are making their mark on the fashion world in their own unique way. Allow me to introduce Ella Dror and Ashley Smith.

Ella and Ashley shot by Morgan White, for the Piers Atkinson lookbook, produced by Kim Howells

Ella, with her sunshine-yellow hair and unique style, is an instantly recognisable figure. She graduated from London College of Fashion, and began her career at fashion PR agencies, and whilst working as a showroom manager, she met Ash. They quickly formed a close working relationship and a friendship that is clear to see! For the past year, both of them had been working for the fashion project Machine-A (last summer, the Fash Ed and I went to the launch of Craig Lawrence's collection for the unique Soho boutique).

Ella Dror

Having already built up connections with three designers, Ella and Ash decided to go it alone and set up their own agency, Ella Dror PR, just months before Fashion Week in February. In fact, two weeks before LFW was due to kick off they "didn't have an office, or email account, and were working from Starbucks, as well as planning presentations and exhibitions for 6 designers." However, they pulled off said presentations with aplomb and are now devoting themselves to nurturing the careers of their clients.

As Ashley explains, "the reason why we started (Ella Dror PR) is because there's not really anything else out there that properly supports young designers and emerging brands. We both have the right experience in this field and most of our clients are personal friends; so once we made the decision to do it everything came together really quickly."

One of Ella Dror PR's most exciting clients is the creative collective House of Organza, who are a group of designers working within different disciplines, all to a central theme. The collective is formed of Alun Davies, Patternity, Pins London, Atalanta Weller, Fred Butler, Craig Lawrence, Piers Atkinson, Gloved Up, Noki, Judy Blame, Kim Howells and Lyall Hakaraia, all of whom work together to support each other's creative endeavours.

 Work by Yves Klein

This season they have taken inspiration from the idea of the Muse, with fashion figure Mr Roy reacting to the work of artist Yves Klein, providing the designers with their starting point. They are set to launch the work that has been produced on this theme very shortly (Fashion Editor at Large will have the full details, stay tuned.)

It is obvious to all that come into contact with them that Ella and Ashley are full of excitement and passion for the new developments with Ella Dror PR, and that they genuinely care about actively encouraging creativity. They are an inspiration to anyone working in this crazy business!

Images: Catwalking/Chris Moore, Dazed and Confused editorial by photographer Anthony Maule and stylist Katie Shillingford, Ella Dror, Yves Klein


Crossing the Blues, University of the Nations, Social Work and Education, Shop Clothes Online, Radiology Information Social Work and Education Posted by Fashion Junior at Large

(Photograph by Mario Testino) Kate Moss and her own personal army of fashion bloggers - laptops at the ready! 

Yesterday evening, a small group of newbie bloggers gathered in the Go Blog! Lounge at the Westfield Big Wardrobe for the first ever FEAL tutorial.

I was joined by Victoria Lan, Tayo Bello, Natasha Woodward, Anyi Hobson, Kat Nowakowski, and Debz Eastlake for an hours discussion on all things blog-related, including setting up a site from scratch, common obstacles that all bloggers encounter, and the benefits that a great blog can bring.

It all got very excitable, as you can imagine with a group of seven girlies all full of ideas! I thought I'd share some of our hottest topics with any other fledgling bloggers out there.

- Starting Out!
We agreed that it is crucial to decide on your 'modus operandi' before you start out; to work out the identity of your site so that you can create a consistent voice. The look of each blog is also crucial; don't feel that you have to follow the same mould as every other blogger with exactly the same template.

- The Techy Stuff
There is a definite divide between the Wordpressers and the Bloggers of this world! For those that are more clued up with HTML coding, it seems Wordpress offers more flexibility with site design - but it's best to find which one you find easier to use. Key words are also the bloggers best friend, along with linking your blog to sites like Bloglovin, to make it more 'searchable'.

I'm currently writing this on a neon 'Vaio' laptop in the Go Blog lounge - vibrant! 

- Content
Just like the layout, it's key to find your own niche; there is no point trying to emulate bloggers that are already successful because they will have cornered their own little part of the market. Whether your blog is image or word based, find what you are passionate about and post about it - and although frequent updates are crucial to achieve a good group of followers, on the flip side there is no point posting 'for post's sake'. Quality not quantity, and all that.

If you are starting a blog, your laptop/Blackberry/iPhone/iPad will become your closest friend...

- What's The Point?
With any blog, it's helpful to work out what you want to achieve from it. In our tutorial group, we had a mixture of writers, stylists and entrepreneurs who all wanted to start blogs for different reasons, and that goes for everyone. Whether it's to hone your writing skills, create a visual portfolio or promote your new business, blogging is the perfect platform to get your work out there. You can also choose to go on the 'blogging as a career' route; it will take a whole lot of hard work, but you with blogging, you really do get out what you put in.

That's just a taster of what went down during our discussion yesterday, so I'm looking forward to what's going to come out of the second session in a few hours. If anyone else has great advice or tips for newbie bloggers, please post a comment!