Parties

Monday Funday with Gaultier

gaultier

I always adore a private view. It’s much like going to an exhibition (well duh) but with the additional bonus of getting to wear a fancy frock and drink limitless amounts of champagne while getting yo culture on. Generally speaking though, there isn’t much of a party vibe per se. Don’t get me wrong they’re always sociable affairs full of fabulous folk to chat with but, aside from the odd exception – Hugo Boss’s Saatchi Gallery soiree last summer, for instance – half the guests don’t end up being physically turfed out an hour after things were meant to wrap up. I’m happy to tell you that’s exactly what happened at the Barbican a couple of Mondays ago. Then again, the artiste whose work was being celebrated was none other than Jean Paul Gaultier so really, what else would you expect?

The Fashion World Of Jean Paul Gaultier - VIP Reception

It’s not often I pull five outfit changes on a Monday but that’s precisely what happened on this occasion. Six if you count wriggling out of my A-MAZING Ada Zandtion couture dress and back into waxed jeans after the private view to continue our party at Soho House. Having debuted my snazzy new fluoro gym gear and donned a little Carven number to shoot for Metro (watch this space!) in the morning, I decked myself in virtually head to toe pink for a project prepping session with Kate Spade that afternoon. Then, come 6pm, it was time for the aforementioned waxed jeans and leopard accessories for the unveiling of Gerald Scarfs installation at the Rosewood Hotel, where Ada then met me with the beautiful creation I’d be wearing to Gaultier afterwards. The whole experience was so ridiculously indulgent and generally over exciting I practically hyperventilated throughout.

gaultier

Once appropriately attired in a sculptural petal dress crafted from buttersoft swathes of glove leather (I know) I managed to regain my composure just enough not to make a total tit of myself among the A listers gathered at the Barbican. And when I say “A Listers” I don’t mean random selection of ‘slebs. We’re talking high fashion doyennes, industry icons and the kind of couture clad ladies and gents who live, breathe and dream Gaultier. You got the feeling that everyone there felt genuinely passionate about the man and his work. Not that I have any aversion to attending parties largely based on their open bar policy but given the immense impact Jean Paul has had on the worlds of fashion and pop culture I felt this was a fitting and wholly deserved tribute. Londoners ranging from Alexandra Shulman, Jade Parfitt and Erin O’Connor to David Downton and Miles Aldridge had all flocked to the museum while countless other fashion and art world figures had jetted in from Paris, New York and Japan for the occasion.

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Me, Ada, Nik, Alexis & Josh

The Fashion World Of Jean Paul Gaultier - VIP Reception

Erin O’Connor

The Fashion World Of Jean Paul Gaultier - VIP Reception

Alexandra Shulman

The Fashion World Of Jean Paul Gaultier - VIP Reception

Nik Thakkar

Suffice to say, it was a truly excellent evening. Besides getting to hang out with some of my favourite people while wearing a dress so exquisite it made my head hurt (or maybe that was the champagne which was indeed a’ flowing), I met Jean Paul Gaultier (the loveliest man!) and went round the exhibition at least three separate times.

If you didn’t spot my review, catch up here, and get your gorgeous selves to the Barbican toute suite!

Love Ella. X

Images courtesy of Dave Bennett for Getty

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Glamour of Italian Fashion Private View

glamour of italian fashion

How else to toast the arrival of an exhibition showcasing The Glamour of Italian Fashion than with a evening of Italian style extravagance? Anything less would have been a travesty. But of course, no one was going to let such a fabulous excuse for fanciness pass them by so last week women (and men) all over London and fat further afield were digging out their finest attire to raise a glass of champagne or three at the V&A.

The Glamour of Italian Fashion 1945 - 2014, London, 1/04/2014

Martin Roth Director of the V&A, Sonnet Stanfill Curator of the Exhibition, Alexandra Shulman, President of Conde Nast International Nicholas Coleridge, Franca Sozzani & Italian Prime Minster Matteo Renzi

Dolce_and_Gabbana

Dolce & Gabbanna

Naturally I wanted to go all Italian for the night and had a choice between three equally exquisite REDValentino dresses. This was, of course, a pinch-me-I’m-dreaming moment but also posed something of a conundrum. Did I go sweet and a little on the safe side in one of the flared hem, thigh skimming cocktail numbers? Or did I go all out in the 3D floral embroidered, ankle length, tulle showstopper? It was so goddamn gorgeous I could barely keep myself from putting it on right there and never taking it off again, but at the same time, I didn’t want to find everyone else in jeans and feel like a total plonker. Then I thought screw it, what could possibly be a more perfect occasion to don such a special garment than an evening celebrating the glamour of Italian fashion?! Paired with my beloved Pollini sandals and an amazing Marni necklace from Net-a-Porter’s exclusive V&A capsule collection I was indeed Italiano-d to the max and, on the red carpet leading into the V&A had a bit of a princess moment.

glamour of italian fashion

Me & Nik
I wore… REDValentino dress, Marni for Net-a-Porter x V&A Necklace, Pollini shoes & Smythson clutch (oops not Italian)
Nik wore… 

Unsurprisingly, I wasn’t the only attendee dressed to impress. The V&A’s magnificent Grand Entrance hall was positively bursting with exquisitely embellished Cavalli, Dolce & Gabbanna and Valentino creations adorning the frames of impossibly beautiful people. After locating a glass of champagne – not a tricky task, there was virtually one handsome, tuxedo clad waiter to every guest – Nik and I entered the fray, raring and ready to mingle. And there was certainly no lack of opportunity to do so. Everyone from Caroline Issa, Jade Parfitt and David Downton to Emilia Fox, Jade Jagger, Laura Charmichael and Lily Allen were in attendance. I’m not usually one to get massively starstruck but when I spied an impossibly chic, Bvlgari jewels clad Caroline Sieber sashaying through the vaulted halls I did slightly go into girl crush overload.

The Glamour of Italian Fashion 1945 - 2014, London, 2/04/2014

Caroline Sieber

glamour of italian fashion

Me again

glamour of italian fashion

Evangeline Ling, Angela Scanlon & Bip Ling

The Glamour of Italian Fashion 1945 - 2014, London, 2/04/2014
Emilia & Jack Fox

The Glamour of Italian Fashion 1945 - 2014, London, 2/04/2014

Jade Parfitt

It was indeed an evening of exquisite Italian glamour, and drinking champagne in the V&A after hours will never cease to thrill me. After saying out goodbyes, Nik and I decided to hit the Linda Farrow party at Scotch, via the Groucho, so it was home for a high speed outfit change. Much as I didn’t want to take that dress off ever, no way in HELL was I going to risk taking it clubbing!

Love Ella. X

Images by Nick Harvey

Posted on by Ella Catliff in Parties 1 Comment

House of Holland x Magnum 25th Anniversary

House of Holland Magnum

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.

House of Holland Magnum

Me… again

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.

House of Holland Magnum

Lilah Parsons

House of Holland Magnum

Tanya Burr

Henry Holland Magnum

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.

House of Holland Magnum
Henry & his Magnum inspired creations

House of Holland Magnum
Henry Holland & Gizzie Erskine

Henry & his Magnum frocks

(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

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Louis Vuitton Curated Shelf

Louis Vuitton

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.

Louis Vuitton

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.

louis vuitton

LV31

Louis Vuitton

Louis Vuitton

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

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One Night Four Parties

parties carven ella catliff

FOUR PARTIES!? I hear you cry. And yes, I know it sounds a smidge excessive. But they were totes work I promise… Well, kind of. Anyway, it’s not my fault if every fash brand under the sun decides to host a soirée within the space of the same four hours. In my defence the final one was a dinner and a girl’s gotta eat, right? Enough with the excuses, you lovely lot aren’t my parents. With umpteen options dotted all over town Nik, Alexis and I laid out our options, picked the best four and began planning our outfits.

ORD_Carven_0031

Up first was a little get together at Carven’s divine South Kensington store to toast their collaboration with cooler than cool French sneaker brand, NO NAME. In my excitement about the evening to come I arrived embarrassingly early. As in, so early the doors weren’t open, the drinks were unpoured and a few garments were even still being steamed… #shameonme. While hovering outside deciding where to lurk until things got going I became transfixed by the adorable florals in the window and one of the team spotted me. I think I just about managed to laugh it off and actually, it was kind of great being the first person in so I could ogle and instagram the shoes free from distraction. On the subject of those shoes, they are absolute fashion catnip. So much so that I reserved a pair on the night and returned the next day to buy them. Then I also got the matching floral sweatshirt, what can I say, I’m incredibly weak willed and powerless to resist to charms of all things Carven. Luckily before I could inflict more damage on my finances the party got going.

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carven parties

ORD_Carven_0048

Carven parties

In between sipping Moscow Mules (possibly about to replace Passionfruit Martinis as my cocktail kryptonite) and looking longingly at Carven’s, I kid you not, wall of collars, I caught up with Bip and Evangeline Ling, reminisced on the H&M Paris trip with Elle Mag’s Harriet Stewart and toe tapped to the sounds of DJ Jean-Robert Santil. All too soon it was time to say our goodbyes so Alexis, Nik and I piled into his Jeep to make for party numero duo.

When Net-a-Porter, the British Fashion Council and Stella Magazine join forces to host a champagne reception at Browns Hotel you just know the whole thing is going to be fabulous. Naturally, their celebration of Brit fashion was just that and made me wish even more that these ‘do’s were on different nights so I could spend several hours at each one. I know, tough life, darling. By the time we arrived the room was packed fit to burst with the likes of Erdem, Christopher Kane and Roland Mouret as well as Net-a-Porter President, Alison Loehnis and British Fashion Council Chief Executive, Caroline Rush, both of whom I really want to be when I grow up.

Net-a-Porter parties

Net-a-Porter President, Alison Loehnis, Anna Murphy and BFC Chief Executive, Caroline Rush (Image by Rachel Dove)

Net-a-Porter parties

Moi (image by Rachel Dove)

Net-a-Porter parties

Richard Nicoll, Rokasanda Ilincic, Stella Magazine Fashion Editor Charlie Harrington, Christopher Kane and Anna Murphy (image by Rachel Dove)

net-a-porter parties

Mary Katranztou & friend (Image by Rachel Dove)

Between the exquisite flower arrangements, freshly poured champagne and stellar (pun totally intended) guest list it was an utterly lovely and incredibly elegant event. But, once again, we were on a tight party schedule so before long we piled back into the car and sped off towards Selfridges. This was not for a late night shopping expedition although given my recent spendthrift form that wouldn’t be entirely surprising. Like many things in life (Pringles, biscuits, biting your nails, picking a scab…) , shopping is one of those things that once you start you just can’t stop. On the bright side, you won’t get an enormous arse or a nasty scar as a result but anyway, I digress. The reason for our department store excursion was in fact the launch of Viktor & Rolf’s new fragrance, Bon Bon. Given that we were now basically running an hour behind schedule it was a pretty in-and-out affair but we still found time to sample the bespoke Viktor & Rolf chocolates and meet the men themselves which was a total “life.made” moment.

viktor & rolf parties

V&R Selfridges

Freshly spritzed and appetites whetted it was on to our final port of call, an intimate dinner hosted in the depths of East London. If ever you’re tempted to offer me a ride anywhere, don’t. I’m the most annoying passenger on the planet. I commandeer the music (Britney ALL THE WAY) and extol the kind of nonsensical driving advice only someone who failed their test epically three years ago and hasn’t attempted since can give, I don’t know why, I can’t help it. It’s a bloody miracle Nik hadn’t strangled me by the time we arrived. But of course he didn’t and thank God for that or I wouldn’t have spent the next two hours enjoying fine food and even finer company. Our host was GINZA, a really interesting brand devoted to bringing together art and fashion via t-shirts produced in collaboration with some of the top photographers on the planet. Happily seated next to the lovely Naomi Mdudu, I wouldn’t have cared if the food had been rubbished. Of course, having been concocted by pop up restaurant pros, The Art of Dining, all five courses were delectable and surprising. By that, I mean cumin scones  topped with goat’s labneh (still not entirely sure what that is) and chilli jam and beef and mushroom broth served from vintage tea pots.

GINZA parties

GINZA parties

Me & Naomi

GINZA parties

GINZA parties

With just a few of us there, tucked cosily out of the cold, chatting nonstop and playing in the photo booth it was a perfect end to a fantastic evening. Going dancing at Shoreditch House afterwards was perhaps a mistake in retrospect but hey, when in East London.

Love Ella. X

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