Tablet – Lenovo Yoga. Envelope pouch – Smythson. Heels – Bally. Headphones – Bower Wilkins.

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London Fashion Week SS15: A visual diary

Hyundai i20

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Hunter SS15

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Charlie May SS15 eyewear

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Mary Katrantzou final walk

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Max Factor Skin Illuminator Foundation & Colour Corrector Stick

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Topshop Unique SS15

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Topshop Unique SS15

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Food on instagram because proper photos on DSLR? Ain’t nobody got time fo that.

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Wearing: Top – COS. Trousers – Zara. Bag – Marni. Shoes – Tibi. Watch – Larsson & Jennings. Rings – Monica Vinader. Cross-Ring – Elizabeth & James (via REVOLVE)

What do they say – Give a woman a house, she’ll make a home? Well, give a woman a Hyundai i20 over Fashion Week, and she’ll make a Death Star on four wheels and one 22-year old driver very, very uncomfortable. This, like many things in life – including adding soy sauce to everything – I blame my mother. Growing up, mornings were a battle of which sibling can out-stupid the other one, starting with putting shoes on before trousers, smearing toothpaste all over our faces and pretending to shave… you get the gist. This led to my poor mother having to shovel us into the car every morning along with 2 x cereal bowls, school outfits, homework, toothbrushes… (at one point I believe there was a pillow fort in the car), and she’d drive with one hand while the other ‘conditioned the air’. Fast forward to SS15 LFW, I inhale a plastic container of scrambled eggs in the car while deciding on an outfit, and with each day a new pile of clothing spilling out the passenger door. At the end of Day One I attend a makeup session at the Apartment with Max Factor discovering the new Skin Luminizer Foundation, and from that point on I use the tinted passenger window to accomplish the ‘dewy look’ in the ensuing mornings, just how Caroline Barnes instructed. My 22-year old driver awkwardly avoids using the rear-view mirror (apparently a touch worse than drink-driving) during my changing room sessions, but we somehow manage to make a split-second eye-contact just when my head is halfway through a sweater. Thankfully this Death Star is all about efficiency (close that hatch…) as we slice through morning traffic, and I arrive at the first show of the day with a Aquafresh breath and lotion behind my ears.

Stay tuned for some of my favourite collections so far!

Huge thanks to Hyundai UK for, gee wow, a car with my logo on it (!), and allowing ‘5 more minutes, mum…’ to happen. Please forgive me for any coco puffs found between the seats. 

Inspiration: Fabergé Eggs, Mary Katrantzou AW11, Max Mara gold-encrusted sweater on Vogue UK August 2012

What you’ll need
Base colour, glitter colour in similar hue or gold, glitter dust (Mine is from BarryM), base & top varnish  (I’m using Essie First Base base coat & Essie Good to go top-coat), a pencil with an eraser butt, a pin, Gold/Silver nail-art pen (I’m using Topshop nail art pen). Secure the pin into the eraser, it should go relatively deep into the butt!

File and buff nails to egg-shape or simply neaten to a unified length

Apply base coat

Apply base colour, then apply a coat of glitter polish of a similar hue for a jewel effect.

Using the nail art pen, make fine criss-crossing lines

I’ll be honest, this ‘inspiration’ does not stem from some encyclopaedic knowledge of art history, or anything remotely similar… in fact I had to google it at first and on spelling it ‘faberze’ Dr Google gave me all sorts of buying choices for Febreeze. Yes I’m shallow like that, and guess what hubby, we’ll never ever run out of air-refresheners, your clever wife just bought fifteen boxes online! And while I’m confessing and all, over the weekend I watched Ocean’s Twelve where George Clooney, Brad Pitt et al try to steal a Fabergé egg – and you guessed it – that’s where this idea comes from. I’m so deep it hurts sometimes.

A few tips:

  • If the nail pen is difficult to control when doing your right hand (or left, if you’re right handed) (screw you if you’re ambidextrous, you superior person), try pushing out a dollop onto a scrap paper, then paint the lines on by ‘leading’ a bit of polish using the tip of the pen. You can also advertise for a flatmate for this nail-do then evict her/him out once you’re done.
  • For the criss-crossing pattern, start from the inner corner of the nail and draw to the opposite mid-point, that should set a good angle for the rest of the lines. (Or else you’ll end up doing something like my left hand ring finger)
  • If you have flower/star-shaped glitter try making bigger criss-cross pattern, and then add the glitter into the diamond a la Mary Katrantzou AW11

Mary Katrantzou AW12

Catwalk photos from Vogue.com
Mary Katrantzou AW12 LFW Courtesy of Vitamin Water

Seeing as the writing in this blog is essentially ‘scribbles’ compared to the likes of Vogue’s Sarah Mower or my new pen crush Sophie Dening, I can’t deny that the research behind any given post also generally run along the lines of typing in Google ‘exciting angles to write a blog post on glitter shoes without sounding like a mad woman‘… and oddly somehow I always end up watching that one sneezing panda video on Youtube. This time though it was an uncharacteristically intense session of shovelling through articles about the design phenomenon that is Mary Katrantzou, each time finding myself more baffled at how brilliantly one can bring together schools of thought into one fashion collection. In fact, at one point the ‘research’ wasn’t so unlike an episode of CSI, not exactly in finding a speck of dandruff that solves a DNA crime, but on learning that this collection was inspired by elements of Mary’s desk drawer. So I went on a Zoom in – enhance, zoom in – enhance mission, even went on to magnify the reflection off a screwdriver on Anna Wintour’s sunglasses and finally saw the intricate details of yellow school pencils, telephone dials, vintage typewriters forming mind-blowing patterns. Surely one of the perks of having a big lens is that it does lend me telephoto vision during the actual show but during that particular show I believe I was busy wiping off the hearts and rainbow-tears out of my eyes. Plus, isn’t that’s the beauty of her designs – a world of secrets bottled in a dress?

Beautiful experience courtesy of Glacéau vitaminwater, the official soft drink supplier to London Fashion Week. (Facebook page)

Mary Katrantzou for Topshop; Images via  Topshop

I know this news is already spreading like wildfire across the interwebz but just wanted to do a bit of heads-up from my end. Long-time readers will know I go KAKA for Mary Katrantzou so this is one designer x high street collaboration worth hollering. It’s so soon too – 17th of February – first day of LFW for the relevant bunch, and prices start from £40 but the dresses are on triple digits… not so horrific when compared to her usual five-digit frocks. Will be looking forward to some wrestling in stores next week, I bring the mat, you can bring the oil?