Serrrrrrrriously hot shoe brand alert! Actually make that haute, Malone Souliers is less “it”, more eternal. After all, when would a purveyor of fine footwear crafted using age old artisanal techniques and offering a made to measure service (#dreams) NOT be something every sartorially obsessed individual wants? And if you think all that bespokeness and tradition sounds stuffy you can think again my friends. They may be concocted in collaboration with italian experts who’ve been creating beautiful shoes since they had to do so by candlelight but Malone Soulier’s creations fuse tradition with modernity in a way that feels entirely new.
Take their current mules. One of the must have styles for SS14 yet there is a sleek, timelessness to these babies which simultaneously harks back to days gone by and nods to the future. I was slightly dubious about whether I’d be rocking mules – how on earth do you keep them on? And after cocktails? – but regardless of potential to fall off, Malone Souliers elegant incarnation of the shape is too damn good not to. The brains behind the brand is also an intriguing one. Creative Director, Mary Alice Malone grew up in the depths of rural Pennsylvania riding horses and even earned herself a spot on the US Junior Olympic Showjumping team. Yep, had she not decided to switch paths we would have seen her competing in Blighty just two summer’s ago. Crazy, huh? But of course she did, swapping ponies for paint and enrolling at Art school in Colorado followed by a Cordwainers degree at London College of Fashion. Then Mary Alice joined forces with globetrotting brand consultant Roy Luwolt and Malone Souliers was born. From the tobacco suede and python skin lace ups to black nappa and tulle pointed toes, these heels are seriously luxe and unashamedly feminine. I’ve fallen hard and my wallet will no doubt be hurtin’ as a result once they’re available to buy this June.
It can be difficult to walk the fine line between ladylike and matronly, or seductive and Kardashian for that matter, when it comes to shoes. But Malone Souliers manage it. Regardless of whether you give a toss about quality or craftsmanship, this alone should be enough reason to love the brand as much as I do.
Love Ella. X
Picking up where we left off in the tale of last Thursday evening, having been culture vultures at the Louis Vuitton Curated Shelf: Tania Kovats soirée, Nik, Tyler, Millie and I piled into his car and headed across town for a very different kind of event. In honour of their 25th anniversary, Magnum had enlisted the immaculately quiffed fellow behind one of my favourite labels, House of Holland to design a frock inspired by their ice cream.
Naturally such a collab has to be celebrated with a great, big bash held somewhere fabulous. Said fabulous location on this occasion was Home House, the grand Portman Square party palace famed for playing host to all things debauched. By the time we arrived the place was PACKED! It was the kind of ‘do where you run in to fifteen different people you know before you’ve so much as touched up your lipstick and checked your coat. I was happy to find Lilah Parsons, Tanya Burr, Henry Conway, Olivia Inge, Antonia O’Brian and the Wellers all in attendance. I was even happier to discover that wine and champagne were being served. Don’t get me wrong, I’m sure the gold-leaf topped, Magnum inspired chocolate Martinis were great but I’m always heavily dubious about booze than could double as a pudding. Plus I planned to hit the unlimited refill ice cream stand (genius!) in a pretty big way and didn’t want to end up waddling home.
Nat & Leah Weller
After mucho mincing it was time for the big reveal. Henry Holland took centre stage in a very dapper, chocolate hued stripy suit and presented his equally edible, hand embellished, sequinned frock. There have only been 25 of these bad boys made and they’ll be given away at various London locations over the summer so watch this space.
Henry & his Magnum inspired creations
Henry Holland & Gizzie Erskine
(victims of an open bar?)
DJ for the night was foxy foodie (sorry) Gizzie Erskine whose beats swiftly got Stooshe, Misha B and half the cast of Made In Chelsea on the dancefloor… Not together, sadly.
Love Ella. X
If there is one thing I’ve done that I’ll never regret it’s starting La Petite Anglaise back in 2010. It’s been a professional and personal roller coaster ride that’s presented me with opportunities, challenges and, let’s be honest, clothes I never dreamed of having. One of the most wonderful things about it has to be the people I’ve met and worked with, many of whom I now count among my closest friends. Ada Zanditon is certainly someone I’ve been incredibly lucky to get to know. An award winning fashion designer and illustrator who’s not afraid to stick to her guns on ethical production, give the finger to fashion’s seasonal hegemony and pour her heart, soul and seemingly boundless creativity into haute couture creations, Zanditon is as inspiring a designer as she is a person. This year marks a major expansion for Ada’s brand which will see her really focusing on the sculptural, made-to-measure garments that have garnered a diverse global audience and, very excitingly, showing at London Fashion Week come September.
I was truly honoured (and, not gonna lie, mildly shocked) when Ada cast me as her muse alongside the unbelievably gorgeous Eloise Chong and asked if I might be up for doing a shoot in one of her bespoke beauties. Well, I obviously didn’t need to be asked twice, would any sane person? So during the first rainy day of LFW last season I joined Ada, Alexis (working her styling magic) and Nik (taking behind the scenes photos, allegedly) at the fabulous ME London hotel to strike a few poses for super talented photographer, Fiona Garden. Needless to say, I’m over the moon with the results and nearly fainted when I saw my pic in the Women’s Wear Daily announcement.
Congratulations Ada and thank you for inviting me to be a part of it!
Love Ella. X
The relationship between art and fashion is a subject that never ceases to fascinate me. You’ve been the brunt of many a ramble about it, you poor things, but I’ll keep this short and sweet I promise. Last Wednesday night was one of extreme contrasts. We finished our eve – or perhaps begun it, if you count the lengthy late night dinner and drinks at Soho House that seemed like a fantastic idea afterwards – with the launch of House of Holland’s collaboration with Magnum Ice cream, a noisy, crowded, celeb tastic bash at Portman Place. The soirée with which we kicked things off was an an infinitely more sophisticated affair, namely the launch of Louis Vuitton’s latest ‘Curated Shelf’ with Tania Kovats.
Me & Nik
I wore: Whistles skirt, Aloe London top (c/o), Sophia Webster shoes, GUESS Bag (c/o) & Dior lips and nails
Nik wore: Louis Vuitton jacket
I don’t need to tell you how I feel about Louis Vuitton. I wildly coveted every collection Marc Jacobs designed for the maison and having almost fainted over the perfection of Nicholas Ghesquire’s debut, it’s safe to say my obsession won’t be waning anytime soon. But beyond the shows, the clothes and les accessoires, one of the things I find most captivating about Louis V is it’s unwavering commitment to supporting the arts. Obviously you’re all familiar with their accessory collaborations, from the now ubiquitous Stephen Sprouse scarves and Yayoi Kusama polkadot bags to the Foulard’s d’Artistes project I got my style on with last year. They don’t just throw cash at an artiste to slap their work on an item of clothing, Louis Vuitton enters into long running collaborations, fusing the aesthetics, values and techniques of both parties to result in products that inevitably become iconic. But beyond partnerships that produce sure fire fashion “it” pieces, Vuitton also endlessly supports the projects of contemporary artists they feel an affinity with. Case in point, Tania Kovats, the latest to participate in their Curated Shelf series. The series has seen a number of top contemporary artists, ranging from Rankin to Tracy Emin, invited to curate a selection of tomes in the librarie at Louis Vuitton’s Bond Street Maison. Besides commissioning Kovats to take part in the ongoing project Vuitton also supported her ‘Oceans’ exhibition which features the fruits of a two year journey around the world (with her own custom made Louis V case, natch) to water samples from 94 different seas. This is a fascinating project and a fascinating insight into a brand that clearly doesn’t just enter into artist collaborations with a view to make a few bucks.
The unveiling of Tania Kovat’s curated shelf was, of course, an elegant event involving the finest champagne, a charming talk from the artist and the opportunity to browse the store after hours… Although admittedly that wasn’t specified on the invitation. Thank you Louis Vuitton for an inspiring start to an evening which swiftly went down a rather different route. You’ll hear all about that soon.
Love Ella. X
Images by Charlie Wheeler
What: Spring red Carven skirt suit (sample), Isabel Marant pumps, Club Monaco top (c/o), Ostwalk Helgason for ALDO Rise bag (c/o), Anne Bowes Jewellery necklace & Accessorize ring
Where: Carven x NO NAME launch party (and many more, see here)
Oh, Carven. I could not even begin to count the ways I love you. Any brand that advocates non-stop collar wearing and has an entire wall of detachable ones in their store was obviously going to be my cup of tea but even this shared affinity couldn’t do justice to my hands down fashion obsession with the brand. Most of the pieces appear entirely at odds with the studied slouch and perennial nonchalance rocked by most women in the French fashion capital yet Carven still manages to feel like the quintessential Parisian label. To be honest, I suspect that even the most committed Marant clad left bank ladies can’t resist its ingenue charms and secretly have a stash of flirty A line minis and lace insert cardigans that they would secretly rather be wearing than Stan Smith’s and leather pants. I was lucky enough to be lent this exquisite resort 2014 skirt suit for the Carven x NO NAME launch party a couple of weeks ago and it took every ounce of willpower I possess to give it back. In retrospect, I wish I’d purchased it back in January as I reckon it could be seriously versatile. For an evening ‘do I paired it with my favourite lace top from Club Monaco (you’ve seen it on here a lot, no?), even trustier Isabel Marant pumps (ditto), a bag from Ostwald Helgason’s amazing collection for ALDO Rise and a necklace my mum, jewellery designer Anne Bowes, gave me for Christmas. Had I been trotting it out before dark I’d probably have gone for a simple sweater and ballet flats… Or maybe even the aforementioned Stan Smith’s. Believe it or not I own a pair and they’re possibly the most comfortable thing ever. You could also totally split the pieces, that jacket would be just the thing to perk up a pair of skinny jeans and a plain white tee. Dammit, why did I not buy this suit!?
Love Ella. X
Images by Holly McGlynn