SS12 at Harvey Nichols: Blogger’s Preview

 

Myself, Kim & Laurie

Myself and fellow Midland fashion bloggers were invited along to a special SS12 preview of collections at Harvey Nichols last week, to see just what was in-store for ladies that like a little luxury in their lives…

I personally really love the collections for the new season, a gorgeous combination of blush nudes and neon brights, as well as easy-to-wear soft colours and draped fabrics.  A similar theme of simplified structure and feminine fabrics flowed throughout.

We were shown pieces from the collections and we were talked through each look by Stuart Dixon, the Assistant Retail Manager for Womenswear and Personal Shopping. The outfit below is a favourite, a polished take on the grunge trend. A summery look in nude tones, moving away from the grunge trademark black.  This Pinko slip is just gorgeous.

Polished Grunge

My favourite brand, ACNE, have produced yet another beautiful collection…

ACNE

ACNE

Burberry

T Alexander Wang

The new collection from Victoria Beckham has proven to be extremely popular (with only two dresses left).

I’m more of an ACNE/Wang girl myself.

Victoria, Victoria Beckham

I love, love, love these Jeffrey Campbell wedges (£95).  The perfect summer shoe.  However, I’d be about 7 ft tall in these, so I may have to leave these beauties for girls who aren’t already over 5 ft 8″.

Jeffrey Campbell

We were given a Harvey Nichols goody bag containing Rose champers, GHD heat protection spray, samples of beauty products and a sample of this….  I would highly recommend this Ole Henriksen Truth Serum. This collagen booster smells delicious, and comes in the form of a cooling gel.  It tightened my skin and I lost my eye bags instantly (which, recently, have been the size of two Chloe Madeleine’s).

I’m not usually a beauty kinda girl, but I’m going to get saving for the full-sized bottle (£53 – 30ml) of this  – it really is a miracle cream (well, a gel). I’m sold!

Ole Henriksen Truth Serum £53 - 30ml

xx

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Harvey Nichols 10th Birthday Party

Thursday evening saw in Birmingham’s most fashionable party of the year, the Harvey Nichols 10th Birthday celebrations.  Harvey Nichols in the Mailbox was transformed into a magical circus themed party, complete with red velvet drapes framing the main entrance, a Mulberry photo booth, magicians, stilt walkers, an extremely fun dressing up box and fashion shows.  Apparently Alexandra Burke turned up to a flurry of paparazzi camera flashes and one lucky lady won a pair of Christian Louboutins on one of the circus theme games.  However, we missed all this as we turned up fashionably late of course… almost 2 hours, eeek.

We more than made up for it on our arrival, treating ourselves to never ending glasses of free champers and sampling the mini fish and chips served to us by waiters clad in dashing red tail coats. Listening to the DJ spin his tracks, it was people-watching heaven.  Footballers, WAGS and some rather beautiful, well-dressed party-goers – sprinkled with the odd minor celebrity.  OK! magazine would have had a field day.  Oh, hang on a minute – they actually did.  You can read their take on the party here.  And yes I did manage get that snap with TOWIE’s Joey… REEM (well, just quite funny).

The dress code on the invite said ‘Glamourous’ – now I don’t really do glam.  I’m more of a grunge girl – opting for black, chunky boots and silver jewellery 99.9% of the time.  I did however, treat myself to a Topshop sparkly long length pencil skirt and teamed this with Gucci boots, a black cami and some new bright red lipstick.

The goth in me did come out that night by way of black nail varnish and cross stickers – available from Superdrug – as seen on blogger Sara Luxe.

The after-party was held in the Penthouse Suite in Loft Lounge.  A perfect drunken ending to a fabulous party.  It was a rather late night and one which left me with a hangover from hell, but it was totally worth it.

Thank you Harvey Nichols – here’s to the next 10 years.

        
      

xx

Style Birmingham LIVE: The Event

27.09.11

Firstly apologies for the lack of posts recently – my life has been taken up with the manic preparation and organisation of Style Birmingham LIVE.  I’m more than making up for it in this post, with a rather lengthy write-up about my experience and photos to give you some visual breaks 🙂 (please note that Craig Holmes took all of the following photographs). I’d love to know your thoughts about the show too so please do leave a comment below…

You may have seen my article in Style Birmingham Magazine, detailing all my tasks behind the scenes in the run up to the event but now the show is over and to be honest I’m a little sad.  Admittedly it was such hard work, and now I feel like I could sleep for a week – choosing all the stock from retailers, arranging it to be delivered, booking it all in, the lengthy task of writing up the exit sheet by hand, then typing it up for the program and making sure all the preparation on my side went smoothly and then the actual event itself, but I loved every minute.

On the 24th September, 16 gorgeous models from the likes of Storm and Models One (I thought I was fairly tall – until I saw them), ourselves, the Production Team, the build team and 16 hard-working dressers from Fashion:Lab at Birmingham Metropolitan College, made our way over to the grand Town Hall to commence with hair and make up demonstrations, dress rehearsals and set up for the weekend of shows to showcase retailer AW11 fashions.

Excitement filled the back stage areas, followed by apprehensive and anxious models and dressers who were nervous that our special VIP night was only one day away.

The MAC make up girls did a beautiful job on the make up, injecting colour onto neutral faces with bright red lips, and the team at Benjamin Ryan straightened, crimped and styled the model’s hair in a modern yet sophisticated look.


Come 12pm on the Friday, the lights dimmed, the music boomed and the gorgeous George Lamb made his way onto stage to introduce what was a fabulous first show.  The show included 9 different scenes and was finished off with an audience Q&A with celebrity stylist and Visual Manager at Mulberry, Bradley Taylor.  The audience loved it and I was ecstatic everything had run to plan.  The styling was spot on too, which is crucial for a commercial show like this.

The shows that followed were no different and with up-and-coming local solo artist, Clare Maguire, singing on the VIP night, the Head Office industry professionals and press were no less than impressed.  She was absolutely amazing and sang with a hauntingly beautiful voice.

My colleague Kim and I also hosted a blogger’s event before this show to give like-minded fashionable style writers a chance to network and ask Bradley Taylor some probing questions about his job and his views on the fashion world.

A few glasses of champers later we were ready to enjoy our hard work dressed in our new outfits – I wore tiny little Topshop black shorts (which felt rather like I was wearing underwear), black tights, a raspberry coloured silk Topshop tank top and burgundy mega high heeled Gucci boots. My colleague Kim looked very on trend in black platforms, and a long sleeved leather and material black panelled dress from Oasis.  After watching the show and mingling with colleagues and friends old and new, we headed on out to the VIP after party, held in the penthouse suite of the Loft Lounge, hosted by Harvey Nichols.

It was so much fun, probably too much in fact – especially when alarms went off at 8am the next day for a busy day of shows.  No time to hit the snooze button.

A sneaky McDonalds in our dressing room sorted us out for the day.

George Lamb was a huge success with the ladies, especially during his meet and greet after each show – thousands of George’s photos are now clogging up many a people’s newsfeed on Facebook – I too am guilty for this!  (Apologies everyone)  The one below is a personal favourite for obvious reasons, and which we had taken in the photobooth of the Harvey Nichols beauty hub… Sitting on his lap was a rather awkward moment I have to say.

Gosh – my eye bags are the size of Great Britain…

I loved every bit of the show but my favourite scene was the atmospheric and dramatic Harvey Nichols one.  Oke, the Choreographer, introduced a Russian theme emphasised by amazing music and some Russian style dance moves by the models.  The clothing represented this well, with plenty of soft beautiful fur from Karl Donoghue, autumn chunky knits from Burberry and sturdy boots from the likes of Jeffrey Campbell.

And further scenes…

The last show ended at 3pm and I was really sad for it all to be over.  I loved every second and I got to work with some really talented people.  The dressers were great, all working so hard to gain experience for their portfolios – to be honest, rather a lifesaver, God knows what I’d have done without their help!

I also received some good news on the last show day, the Production Team, have asked me to do some freelance work for them in London on further shows, so I can continue to do what I love and we’ll be busy at Retail Birmingham uploading looks onto the Facebook page from the show, along with details of where you can purchase each item from…

Hopefully now everything has calmed down, I can update this blog a little more with fashionable finds, style news and little snippets of inspiration.

I’ll also post about my new boots; which should hopefully arrive tomorrow – I spotted them on Arabella, one of the models, and instantly fell in love.  They’re a little treat to myself!

xx

Please note that all photos used have been taken by the talented Craig Holmes – please contact me for his contact details should you wish to enquire about his photography.

FNO at Harvey Nichols

12.09.11

Last week 10 lovely ladies attended a blogging evening that we organised as part of Style Birmingham Live.  This coincided with the very fashionable Vogue’s Fashion’s Night Out at Harvey Nichols in the Mailbox.

At 6pm we met, and sipped on some delicious prosecco whilst chatting about things we love – style, beauty and our blogs.  Myself and my colleague Kim, decided to host such an evening to introduce fellow bloggers to each other in preparation for Style Birmingham Live.  It was a great opportunity for a little networking, as many don’t get a chance to do this sort of thing outside of the capital.  We chatted about the event which is due to take place between 23rd and 25th September and swooned over the Mulberry bag – the amazing competition prize (which you can enter here by the way).  We made our way over to Harvey Nichols to sample yet more bubbly and enjoy the AW11 fashion show.

We roamed the luxurious store to check out the designer collections by the likes of Acne and Burberry Brit, enjoyed a spot of people-watching – envying beautiful clothing styled by a whole host of well-dressed guests, sprinkled with a footballer or two, and then took our front row seats for the AW11 catwalk show to find a treat in the form of a lovely bottle of Harvey Nichols white wine. Perfect for the weekend.

The models strutted down the catwalk in designer wear from the likes of Alexander McQueen, Belstaff, Jeffrey Campbell (his boots are my favourite) and Christian Louboutin.  Myself, Laurie of Bell & Smokey , Kate of Bespoke Rose and Kim – my colleague, who all sat together (pictured below), snapped away – great excuse to use my new iPhone (can photograph far batter than I can text at the moment, haven’t quite mastered this one!)  We swooned some more and mentally noted everything we wanted on our wish lists.  A lot of tartan, royal red, ladylike looks, bright skinnies and androgynous styles were amongst the themes throughout.

A great evening with fashionable folk and the very lovely blogger ladies, who I’ll look forward to meeting again on Friday 23rd September with celebrity stylist, Bradley Taylor, before the VIP showing of Style Birmingham Live’s catwalk show.

xx