Living in Bournemouth, a two and a half hour train journey into London, means that I can’t always attend events and shows personally (I have an amazing team of writers who live locally who help out) but when it comes to London Fashion Week, I’m happy to make an exception.
After a hellish journey, characterized by what seemed like thousands of fallen trees, line floods and delays, I arrived at Freemason’s Hall, the host of Fashion Scout, feeling a little bedraggled. I’m not entirely sure what 4 hours of standing up on a train in brand new shoes does to you, but it’s not pleasant. However, with the prospect of spending the next few hours in the company of the lovely Body Shop PR team, all my aggravations melted away and I began to enjoy the full pleasures LFW has to offer.
If you’ve never been before (and I feel that everyone should have the opportunity to go at least once) the only way I can describe the atmosphere is of pure chaos, fun, excitement, anticipation and frenzied fashion. Whilst London isn’t necessarily what you’d call a ‘dull’ place, the city comes to life during Fashion Week (or at least the area of Aldwych and Covent Garden does), with bold, bright, weird and wonderful outfits on show – many of which are brought to life for the event itself, or simply an expression of their own personal style, muted for the rest of the year. Although it can seem a little intimidating at first, everyone is so friendly and eager to find out why you’re attending, who you’ve seen and what collections you love the most. It’s a great place to meet people and make new acquaintances, as well of course – to pick up on upcoming trends.
Unfortunately, our delayed train meant that I missed most of the morning shows that I had kindly been allocated by the beauty sponsors of Fashion Scout – The Body Shop. Luckily, Sheena was able to fit me into some other shows, but after seeing Yifang Wan last year, I was disappointed to not be able to follow what the AW14 collection had to offer. Commercially, many of the collections are not what you’d deem as ‘wearable’, although Topshop may tone it down and make it accessible, however the creativity and passion behind the collections – and how carefully and thoughtfully they are put together is awe inspiring, and it’s this that keeps fashionistas coming back for more each season. It’s what gets them talking.
After relaxing a little at The Body Shop Media Lounge, packed to the brim with beautiful make-up, delicious coconut water (if you’re interested, try the Pineapple flavour – it’s like a non-alcoholic Pina Colada) and popcorn, it was time to head off to our first show of the day – XIAO LI, who was this season’s Merit Award.
The collection itself was primarily made up of rubbery, silicone creations. Moulds of pastel jackets and leathery feel skirts sashayed down the catwalk, teamed with bright pink make-up and on trend, pink chalked hair. It felt very modern, up to date and futuristic almost. It wasn’t my favourite show of the day, but it certainly kicked it off with a bang.
After a quick drink (coconut water, of course), it was time to go backstage at Zeynep Kartel and have a peek at the make-up and hair for the ultimate ‘dress’ show of the season (in my opinion). With a central dark red ombre lip feature and bronzed ‘goddess glow’ skin, the feel of the show was ‘strong glamour’, which was certainly emphasized by the tempo of the music once the show started.
Whilst waiting for the show to start, I was lucky enough to grab a quick picture with the beautiful Sammi from The Beauty Crush and my lovely blogging bestie, Em Sheldon. How gorgeous are their outfits!
The dresses on the catwalk of Zeynep Kartal literally blew me away, and I’m positive I’m not the only one. Both I and the girls at The Body Shop agreed that if the occasion were right (and you had the money) you could easily slip one of the dresses on and feel a million dollars. Unlike the other shows, which are primarily about expressing creativity, this one felt magical, princess-like and inspirational. The creations were each so intricate and the make-up really complimented the ‘strong, glamorous women’ feel that the dresses had to them. It was most definitely THE best show I’ve ever seen before, and I was lucky enough to have the best spot for snapping photos! It felt like a more sophisticated take on a Victoria’s Secret show.
Next up was the Kiev Fashion Days show. Longer than usual, and showcasing not just one designer, but several (each with an 8 piece collection), the synonymous make-up and hair tied everything together so it ran seamlessly as one show.
The Body Shop’s head make-up artist Lan Nguyen talked us through the natural, yet contoured look for the models – with warm orangey undertones brightening up the skintone, and greys and browns contouring and defining the cheekbones. A look that can be re-created for ‘everyday’ wear but similarly – very high fashion.
The show itself was a real display of ‘on trend Winter wear’ with warm fur coats, long sleeve jumpsuits and party wear. Some of my favourites were the mesh based tops and dresses, teamed with checkered tailored trousers and court heels. Stylish, sophisticated and classical, yet very ‘modern woman’.
The last show of the day, was the hotly anticipated Belle Savage, which I was lucky enough to go backstage for earlier in the day. ‘A modern, post-war take on a geisha inspired doll’, what sounded rather complicated, actually all pulled together to create a very unique, yet beautiful look. The lips were kept glossy and prim, with illuminated eyes and blushed cheeks.
The show itself featured lots of bold prints (tigers, chains, lipsticks) on very tailored, womanly shapes. The models wore ‘fez’ style hats, emphasizing the ‘doll’ like feel of the make-up.
Overall, I had a wonderful day and was again, treated like royalty by The Body Shop PR team. A special thanks to Sheena, who looked after us for the day and invited us along. It’s so interesting not only to be able to watch the shows, but also to meet other bloggers – and to go backstage and see what happens ‘behind the scenes’. Fashion Week sure is chaos, but it’s the kind of chaos you’ll become addicted to. Stayed tuned for more Fashion Week updates in the LFW section of the site.