Thursday, June 30, 2011

Brighton Fashion Week: A Primitive Couture Night Created by “Roadkill Couture”

In the afternoon of 3rd June, St Martin's church was filled up with a sense of primitivism, wildness and mystery created by Jess Eaton's recycled “Roadkill Couture” collection, showcasing couture pieces made of feathers, furs and from body parts of animals that have died naturally or been killed for food. The models dressed in a tight fitted leather dress which accentuated perfectly the female curves coordinated with a luxurious bolero jacket made from rat skin or a billowing cape made from a horse tail and accessorized with a pheasant skull necklace and a beautiful bird wing fascinator effortlessly exuded raw sex appeal and an innate sense of sensuality and seduction, which were a magnet to the audiences under the stage.

The designer used the colour black to convey mystery, sexiness, sophistication and elegance. This signature big bird wing hat served as the main focus of the outfit.

They said Princess Beatrice would love this iridescent fascinator made from four magpie wings. I cannot agree more. I would also suggest Anna Dello Russo wear it to the “Big Four.”

The glamorous bold feather headpiece and the chunky necklace made from mussel shells went extremely well with the hot pants created using a traditional brown check fabric. They certainly helped brighten up the total look.

Finale, what won applause in “Roadkill Couture”s show was not necessarily the professional models walking the catwalk in some breathtaking clothes, it was the inspirational message infused into the show which stimulated every single audience to think about how we treat our animals, and reminded us to take up a respectful and more compassionate attitude towards them.

In addition to Jess Eaton's “Roadkill Couture,” Brighton Fashion Week featured a stunning array of couture collections by the most renowned and celebrated designers. Edward Finney is well known for his superb tailoring, intriguing experiments with fabrics and the structural beauty of his clothes.

I have a preference for this gold brocade dress with a curtain-like veil which reminded so much of the yellow dragon robes worn by the empress of ancient China.

I saw an ideal alternative to Vera Wang's bridal collections.

The designer combined complex design with delicate lightweight organza, a very nice try. The bloody red was epic.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Northampton Rocks! I See Rosy Future for Fashion in Graduate Catwalk Show

The University of Northampton's School of The Arts Graduate Fashion Show at Royal & Derngate took place on the 23rd June featuring collections from graduating Year 3 students from the Division of Fashion and Textiles, as well as a Year 2 collection. What impressed me most about the participating designers-to-be were their unflinching enthusiasm for fashion and adventurous attitude coupled with a willingness to try new things embodied in each design. It is often said that it is a long way to the top, and it will take one a big chunk of time, effort and concentration before securing a unique place on the international fashion stage. Many of them cannot bear the frustration and quit halfway. Nevertheless, the wowing collections presented offered such an opportunity for seeing tremendous potential in the future British designers, creating plenty of optimism about the future of fashion. Guys, you are on the right track.

A humorous interpretation of the trendiest jumpsuits, tight pant sets and mini dresses in a kaleidoscope of colors and prints exuded the 70s glamour and sexiness. The most playful part was that Dalmatians wearing the same style of clothing as the models were brought up to the stage to walk the runway.

Northampton's fashion graduates' works abounded with creativity techniques and echoed the designers' personality. Using the fabrics such as leather in a novel way and experimenting with textures, drapes and pleats got the graduate collections one step closer to the mature professional level.

White never fails with some edginess shown in its structure, this catwalk piece was reminiscent of the structural beauty inspired by Antwerp six.

Apparently, the Barbie doll silhouette, the basket weave texture and the hot pink and orange color palettes have reflected the designer's sanguine temperament with girlish wit.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Magnan & Tse: French-Chinese Fashion Fusion

In a wonderful quiet corner in the heart of the city, I found this chic boutique with a strong character owned by a Parisian-born Chinese architect turned fashion designer, Tse Yuen-Man. Tse started her career as an architect until two years ago in 2009, she launched the precious apparel brand Magnan & Tse. That explains why Tse's designs exude structural beauty and focus on silhouette. In one word, her design style is Chinese in spirit with French basics.

From the moment you step through the front door, your eyes will automatically be attracted to the comfy signature “jewel-T shirts” with hand embroidery and rhinestone motifs on the window mannequins, which reflect the designer's design philosophy that the perfect attire for modern women should be easy to carry, simple yet not without delicate details; feminine yet modern and chic, and of soft and comfortable high quality and with exquisite craftsmanship, which allows busy working women to feel confident in it during the day and look enchanting with gorgeous accessories in any evening functions.

If you are a huge vintage fan like me, I suggest you pick your favourite pieces in Tse's recycled and handpaint vintage collection of bold colours and spectacular prints and patterns to fill up your wardrobe. Magnan & Tse has got a full hanging rail of 60's Go-Go retro style dresses to which the designer introduced variations and embellishments and made alterations to create a modern interpretation of the groovy 60s mod fashion. Are you ready to be a modern 60's Go-Go dancing queen, girls? Now get yourself a wig and rock the party!

In addition to the signature “jewel-T shirts” and the recycled vintage collection, Tse has just added a computer print line using a high resolution technique for technocolour rendering to her brand. I personally reckon some of the prints showed hints of Vivienne Tam's early designs. The bright and vibrant oriental colour combinations always make my heart and those who fancy adding a bit Chinese touch to their styling happy.

If Tse's “jewel-T shirts” appear a little too casual to you for the evening, why not try her trendy, elegant and equally comfy beaded embroidered cocktail dresses which are ideal for both formal and casual events? The flowy silhouette is perfect for pairing heels to sexily sway your body on the dance floor.

At Magnan & Tse, you can choose from a wide range of handmade accessories, envelope clutches, daytime bags and shoes to complete your look, which will make you look stunning day and night.

Though I missed out on the “Forever Better with Miele, by REDRESS” VIP fashion show on the 16th June which aimed at raising public awareness of the importance of recycling used-clothing and textiles and advocating for a fashionable revival of second-hand clothes and textile recycling (what a pity!), I was happy for and so proud of Yuen-Man as one of the participating designers who created two Mandarin inspired, one piece Cheongsam dresses out of second-hand clothes for the show, which best represented her Chinese origin and showed her keenness for recycling clothing. Respect! Please click into for the review of the show.

Magnan & Tse
G/F 15 Aberdeen Street. Soho
Hong Kong