Sunday, 21 September 2014

LFW Adventures: Day 1 with Holly Fulton

There are many aspects to London Fashion Week that I love- the buzz of excitement as a new collection is unveiled, the explosion of camera flashes and of course the free Vita Coco on demand. Yet, the most enthralling aspect of it all is the enigma. On the morning of my very first London Fashion Week I informed my mum that I would spend an "hour, maybe two" at Somerset House. As I tottered out of the house in my silver heels, I was blissfully unaware of the adventure that I was exposing myself to... In hindsight, I would have worn a pair of hiking boots if I had known what the day would entail! Anyway, to the despair of my anxious mother, I didn't return an hour or so later as I had promised. In fact it would be another eight hours until I got to relieve my feet from those torturous, but oh so pretty, shoes. If only my naive self knew that in those ten hours I would sit second row of the BFC Courtyard runway, come into physical contact of my favourite bloggers, photographers, stylists and even celebrities, and of course get photographed by the likes of Vogue, Teen Vogue, Glamour, and so on. Not bad for your first ever LFW.

One year on, and London Fashion Week continues to surprise me. Once again I found myself stumbling the cobbles of Somerset House in another pair of ridiculously uncomfortable heels, albeit platforms. One must be a martyr for their fashion don't you know? This year I was accompanied by the very quirky and cute Ellie, from the award winning Rose and Vintage blog; we're both vintage fanatics, and North London girls, so we have a lot in common! It was certainly more exciting having someone to accompany London Fashion Week with, especially when you're invited backstage...

Myself and Ellie (photo credit Eugene Shishkin)

As me and Ellie admired the wonders of Somerset House, like a pair of overly dressed tourists, we were approached by two girls who asked to photograph our outfits. Once chatting to the girls we mentioned our blogs which prompted them to ask if we would be interested in checking out the backstage scene of the forthcoming Holly Fulton show. Obviously we said "YES"... even though I was a little judicious as it sounded to good to be true. However, I was pleasantly surprised, in fact I was a combination of emotions between gob-smacked and starstruck. The backstage quarters were just as I had always imagined... CHAOTIC. Yet in the midsts of turmoil, hairspray and cameras, were rails of exquisite, unseen materials of pure beauty which were sealed from the pits of mobocracy in plastic protectors. I was in heaven.

Anyhow, we got the privilege to explore the secrets of backstage. This involved watching the small armies of hair stylists, make-up artists, nail technicians, stylists, dressers and organisers do their magic to the gorgeous models. Funnily enough me and Ellie bumped into Roger, the miracle worker or shall I say hairstylist, who managed our hair at a previous shoot that we had done for Beyond Retro- what a small world! Roger gave us a quick summary of the hair styling for the show, which was a very sleek up do comprised by layers of gel, serum and hairspray. The make-up was fairly simple and youthful, however the end result was flawless. Its amazing what a bit of foundation can do! I loved how relaxed the models looked in comparison to the manic stage crew!

However, I was most bewildered by the clothing which is no surprise. I fell head over heels in love with Holly Fulton the previous year when I watched the live show; it felt a bit surreal being part of back stage a year on! I adore the mixture of femininity and 60s nostalgia of Fulton's creations. I really admire the way in which Fulton combines delicate embroidery with electric, monochrome prints and textures. It was very tempting to try on the garments which innocently hung on the rails. It was a major relief that we got invited to watch the live show as I would have probably walked off set with a few pieces of new clothing... 

Me and Ellie were incredibly grateful to watch the show, especially when asked to sit second row despite not having a ticket! It was fascinating to see the show swing into full action. There was a notable contrast between the relaxed atmosphere of the runway and the tatters of stress which remained backstage. However, the soothing music and blinding stage lights numbed the commotions, and I was able to concentrate on the beautiful collection which looked even better off the rail. 
This season is by far my favourite collection by Holly Fulton. I loved the combination of the shimmery, 3D beading with the soft, asymmetrical silhouettes. The hint of bold coloured embellishment with the monochrome was incredibly eye-catching. Despite the heavy-duty detail, and sincerity of colour, the collection remained very wearable due to the cool, minimalistic aesthetic. Plus the chunky, white sunglasses and shiny sandals added a very summery vibe!

My favourite looks...

Me and Ellie left the show feeling rather euphoric, before stumbling into Holly Fulton herself! We couldn't resist congratulating her on the show. It was great to hear the designer talk about her collection fresh off the runway. I loved how our monochrome outfits compliment one another so well!

The rest of the day was quite a blur after that- it was mostly made up of bumping into old friends and colleagues, as well as getting photographed by likes of Vogue Paris, Womenswear Daily and lots of other interesting media establishments and photographers. Its always a pleasure to meet new people who share the same 'passion for fashion' as you! Unsurprisingly, nothing compared to the excitement of the Holly Fulton extravaganza!

Until next time LFW!

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