It’s been a while.
If you haven’t already sussed it yet, the S/S’13 trend most heavily represented so far on the high street is inches-wide stripes.
Stripes make regular appearances year after year, but something about this season’s stripes feels fresh and unique. Their width definitely feels new, the fact that the pieces are tailored yet loose feels new, but mostly I think it’s the way that the stripes clash. By that I mean they’re worn going in different directions. Horizontal, vertical, diagonal stripes meet and twist and repel each other on dresses, separates and suits. See Marc Jacobs and PPQ, Jonathan Saunders and Acne…
Bottom Row: Marc Jacobs, Marc Jacobs, Jonathan Saunders
Images via Vogue.co.uk
Here’s my take on it in this month’s Metro Herald column
At the first spring/summer fashion preview I attended last autumn, a single trend got me immediately; bold, brilliant, black and white stripes. Inches wide and perfectly defined these stripes are inspired by Marc Jacobs’ bold, multi-directional black and white pieces, PPQ’s nautical inspired, off the shoulder dress, and the way Acne and Jonathan Saunders mixed perfect banded tops with plain white trousers. Graphic, monochromatic stripes are here in a big way for SS’13.
Not only are they unique and current, these stripes are definite and dramatic; not pretty, not fine and definitely not subtle. Too fine and from a distance your stripes merge into a dirty shade of grey, but you’re making a monochrome statement everywhere with this season’s take on stripes. Forget school-days, grunge-inspired faded stripes, these are well-defined lines to be worn with cool confidence, not scuffed-up Doc Martens.
Don’t believe that stripes aren’t flattering either; loose fitting dresses, separates and jackets, skim off shoulders and hips. These stripes don’t cling to your shape they merely highlight your angles. They’re easier to wear than you think; team vertical striped trousers with horizontal striped tops, and plain white or black outerwear. Mix up your stripes with accessories in neutral leather, bright patents, and top off the look with luscious red lips.
A key way that stripes were worn on the catwalk was with a flash of flesh, at midriffs, ankles and scoop necklines. These Warehouse trousers (pictured €63) combine this season’s stripes with an ankle-grazing length – a glimpse of flesh makes the stripes less aggressive. This New Look thick stripe jumper (pictured €29.99) is a casual way to combine horizontal stripes with plain white trousers. The chicest way to rock bold spring summer stripes is to team this high waisted ASOS skirt (pictured £40) with 1940’s inspired make up. If you didn’t do your fashion homework, then you’ve got detention, and you’re doing lines.
Inspired by… perhaps?
So with just a week to go till we can shop it, (online and in selected stores March 5th), the campaign images are out and the wait is nearly over for the Rihanna for River Island collection.
Here’s a sneak peek at each piece, in case you haven’t seen it yet. I also thought it was about time to post the rest of River Island’s SS’13 collection too!
First the Rihanna collection: Launched during London fashion week, the collection was very much River Island given a Risqué attitude, targeted at a young market who are in possession of a seriously toned body. There are cropped tops and shorts in their dozens with the collection, but there are definitely pieces similar to those we’ve seen at River Island in previous collections. The footwear for example, huge edgy platforms are the brand’s staple but seem to ring true with Rihanna’s personal style; Bra tops, varsity jackets, maxi dresses and hi waisted shorts, again all very River Island but also pieces similar to those we’ve seen Rihanna in.
I don’t think I’m in the right demographic to be buying from this collection, I’m holding out for the Georgia Hardinge collection in April.
Until then I’ll be shopping the rest of the collection, here’s a round up of what I saw at the previews and some is in store now:
I hope you’re well.
I was lucky enough to visit the Kurt Geiger design rooms at the company headquarters to view the 2013 Spring/Summer collection. I was a little apprehensive… was it going to be like a high-heel massacre, discarded soles, frayed laces, broken stilettos and thrown away designs everywhere? “I’d definitely have worn those” ready to burst from my lips, I went in…
Of course it wasn’t like that, it was actually better than I could have imagined. Huge glass windows, designs being thought up by designers sitting at Mac, inspiration boards, sketches, swatches and photographs covering every table… and you know the odd pair of shoes…
Crazy Ass Heels…
Matchy Matchy Match Matchy etc etc…
Here are a few of my favourite pieces from the Louis Vuitton AW13/14 Icons collection. The Icon Collection features the timeless LV designs; always a part of the standard collection and reinterpreted each season with current trends.
Shoes and Boots
The Leather Clutch
The Noé Bag
First commissioned in 1932 to carry 5 Champagne bottles… you don’t say… (4 the right way up and one upside down in the middle) the Noé bag this season comes in vibrant colours from orange and blue to cerise to purple two-tone. It also comes in different sizes and strap lengths, the longer strap makes a cross-body bag and a more youthful vibrant feel. Stunning,
Pre Fall 2013
“Lace is More”
The collection is a mix of 19th century aristocrat, 60′s miss and
recalls the understated elegance of Jeanne Moreau in Truffaut’s film, “The Bride Wore Black”
Jaquard, velvet, tweed and lace, lace, lace all give texture beyond the staple embossed LV monogram; only on the Speedy Cube bag was the company logo really visible and even these were given a twist with thick luxurious carpeting embroidery.
Thick velvet bow details, and minuscule blue and black sequins gave softness and charm to elegant silhouettes, while frock coats, mini skirts and shift dresses shirt suits were staple pieces that gave the dramatic collection a sweet edge.
Click the short videos to watch the collection on a carousel…
Hello dear readers,
Here’s this month’s Metro Herald Fashion Column
Less about trends, more about maintaining interest in a tired winter wardrobe; as much as well all wear black, it’s not so tricky to add a splash of colour…
Wake up your Wardrobe
I don’t know about you but I think starting a new year in a month like January is a terrible idea. We’re supposed to feel refreshed, revitalised and ready for a new start. In reality we’re exhausted, have the ultimate holiday hangover and all we want to do is stay under the duvet ‘til March…
…March, now that’s a good month to start a new year, the next trend season is Spring/Summer after all.
Except I can’t bring myself to think about new trends yet, I’m happy in my lamb’s wool jumper and riding boots keeping warm. So instead of buying all new pieces, the next two months can be spent spicing up the ones we already have. By taking inspiration from this season’s trends and adding a transitional twist we can brighten up our wardrobe, and hopefully our winter-blues too.
Georgia Hardinge, (available at wolfandbadger.com) and the much-lauded Mary Katrantzou, are modern-day geo print pioneers. Bring a little Art Deco-inspired print into your pre-spring collection; avoid summery, pastel, floral designs and opt for bold blues and vibrant Oranges. This Biba top (pictured £69) available at Houseoffraser.com will work wonders on your all-black winter wardrobe.
Cobalt is a strong colour trend this season, Lanvin’s plain shift dress and Céline’s oversize cocoon coat made true-blue statements on the catwalks. Tame the trend with this Chupi gold ring (pictured €97/£81) available at the Loft Market.
If you’re over this season’s trends and just want to invest in something chic and classic to brighten up your wardrobe then this purple leather Cambridge Satchel Co. bag (pictured €145/£110) available at Harvey Nichols, Dundrum will see you through all seasons. Adding splashes of colour to our winter staples are a great way of preventing ourselves from getting too comfy in our winter warmerland.
Hello dear readers,
After the strong words I had with myself last week it’s business as usual today. Sort off…
Firstly, I thought I’d get things back on track with a short and sweet January Haul type post; including a couple of Christmas Prezzies, Sales Buys, Vintage Pieces and a F***ing amazing tour jacket…
As much as it’s a bit soulless to receive cash and vouchers for Christmas, I rarely know what I want till I see it; I couldn’t possibly write a list for Santa at the start of December because I’d change my mind by the time my advent calendar windows are all opened. But there are some pieces that I’ve always wanted or I always need; leather trousers and Lepel underwear respectively, for example.
Leather Trousers, ASOS
Leopard Print Devore Cape, Military Boots, River Island
Cream Cable Knit Jumper, Jack Wills
Blue Cable Knit Jumper. Farah
Black Lace Bra, Lepel
Vintage 60′s Black Bag, Judy’s Vintage Fair
Siouxsie & the Banshees Leather Tour Jacket, A Gift
Lepel if you haven’t heard of it, is a boutique lingerie brand made in a factory in Nottingham, England. (NB: Nottingham is famous for it vast 19th/20th century lace production). They also make the most comfortable, perfectly fitting, gorgeous underwear I’ve ever worn; and at around £20-£25 for a bra, is on the less expensive side what most of us spend on a good quality bra right?
So this underwear manufacturer is able to sell great quality underwear at a reasonable price. (I’ve been wearing their ‘Fiore’ bras for a few years now and have them in 7 different colours). I’m lead to believe that making products in Britain /Ireland costs too much and so companies outsource manufacturing. Which brings me round to my second point, it disturbs me just how much of the new clothes I buy aren’t made locally…
I started thinking about it when I saw a report from Rochdale, Lancashire on Sky News. It said that the area was suffering from 72% unemployment. If I use Rochdale as an quick example, Wikipedia names well over 100 mills that have known to have existed in Rochdale; 45 of which were textile mills; indeed Rochdale and much of Greater Manchester and Lancashire were known during the industrial revolution for cotton/woollen/textile production. During the 20th century it fell into a deep decline and eventually came to a halt.
There does however seem to be a re-spinning of the mill wheel so to speak, Mary Portas’ ‘The Bottom Line’ (shown on Ch4) highlighted the issue and the Manchester Evening news reported this story last November, it claims that 200,000 jobs could be created in 5 years if plans to re-establish textile manufacturing in the area transpire. But until companies begin to start sourcing components, and manufacturing produce locally, then I can’t see how these kind of problems can be resolved.
But should I care and just how big an issue is it? Not everything is made outside Britain/Ireland surely? I checked the labels in all my new clothes, here’s a list of their origin of manufacture:
ASOS Leather Trousers: Made in India, River Island Boots: Made in Brazil, River Island Cape: Made in China, Jack Wills Jumper: Made in China, Farah Jumper: Made in China, Vintage BLL Leather Tour Jacket: Unknown, Lepel Bra: Made in England, Vintage 60′s Leather bag: Made in England…
So as far we know, 2 out of the 8 pieces of clothing I have bought/received in the last month were made in Britain, and none were made in Ireland. Should we support British/Irish manufacturing? And even if we want to, do we have a choice?
If we want something on trend and cheap we pretty much know it’s not going to be made in Europe, but a Lambswool or Merino jumper that costs the best part of £100/€100, should we expect it to come from a local manufacturer for that price? I’d like to believe that I’d support local producers, (it’s pretty easy food-wise) but based on the above list, it seems I can only viably do it with clothes if I buy vintage.
When I read that both jumpers were made in China, I was surprised and for some reason I felt short changed, but why? Is buying local produce even a quality issue? Are products that are made in Britain/Ireland a better quality and thus they cost more, or it is purely the manufacturing costs that causes the price increase? Is buying local merely a moral issue then, and would places like Rochdale see an increase in employment if we all insist on buying local, the Manchester Evening News seems to think so.
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