Parties

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.

ORD_Carven_0024

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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Partying with Moynat, Matches & GQ Style

Mynat Matches GQ Style

Wearing Erdem @ THE OUTNET, Angel Jackson, Sophia Webster & Anne Bowes Jewellery

It’s no secret that I’m rather partial to a party so when Moynat, Matches and GQ all agreed that Wednesday is totes the new Friday and decided to host soirées that evening, my RSVP was obviously a resounding oui! This was before spending the evening prancing around Paris with Dior (more on that very soon) before leaving for London at 7am the next morning with the intention of “getting loads of work done.” Suffice to say, by the time I arrived back in Blighty the idea of getting back in my gladrags and hitting the town didn’t massively appeal. Once I’d slipped into a delectable Erdem number from THE OUTNET and enjoyed a scrumptious supper at Little House Mayfair I found that in fact, I was rather excited after all. Funny that.

Moynat London Store Opening

First up, was Moynat’s chic store launch a mere high heeled toddle up the road on Mount Street. Given that a) Moynat’s leather goods are the epitome of luxury and b) Karl Lagerfeld rocked up to the Paris party last summer, I was super psyched about their arrival in London. Launched in 1849, Moynat Paris is a heritage brand in the truest sense of the word and what they don’t know about luxury isn’t worth knowing. Many brands with a similar legacy did not in fact develop into their current guise until really quite recently but I was astonished to discover that Moynat released their first collection of women’s handbags in 1878 so have had well over a century to refine their take on my ultimate sartorial indulgence. As a result, the leather lovelies on show last week were utterly exquisite. In an array of buttersoft skins and deliciously colour popping shades it was all I could do not to grab as many as I could carry and leg it. Had I not be wearing 5 inch Sophia Webster stilettos then who knows, I may have even tried and been subsequently rendered a fashion pariah… albeit one with GREAT handbags. Seriously, the sheer craftsmanship involved in these babies is phenomenal and on the night, we were lucky enough to witness the artisanal expertise in action.

moynat matches GQ Style

moynat matches GQ

Naturally Moynat had invited the toast of the town and I spied Samantha Barks, Martha Ward, Jasmine Guinness and David Downton (remember our Rimini trip last year?) among many fabulous others. My companions for the night were brand strategist extraordinaire and AnOther Man contributor, Andrew Blysack and of course, Nik Thakkar who FYI also wrote a fantastic piece on the event. With the exception of possibly Rhianna and/or Ryan Gosling, I couldn’t have wished for better partners in crime.

moynat matches GQ Style

Me & Nik

moynat matches GQ Style

Martha Ward

Moynat Matches GQ Style

Samatha Barks

moynat matches GQ Style

Moynat Paris, Mayfair

Moynat Matches GQ Style

Jasmine Guinness

After several glasses of champagne and a good ogle of E-V-E-R-Y gorgeous thing in the Moynat boutique it was time to head to Welbeck Street for a house party, the haute-ness of which you would not believe. Obviously you’ve heard of Matches. You may well have bankrupted yourself on their fashionable delights (as I have on many occasions) and read their brilliant new magazine. Well, on top of their online and offline stores and publications, they also own THE most fabulous townhouse on Welbeck Street. Every time I visit I start imagining I live their and have to be pretty much forcibly removed, it’s that gorgeous, and usually full of unbelievably beautiful clothes. On this occasion the beautiful clothes had been replaced by beautiful people as the house was playing host to the MATCHESFASHION.COM x GQ Style Magazine party. By the time we arrived the place was packed with well dressed revellers spilling out onto balconies and even the the street. Admittedly the latter were largely taking a cig break but still, you get my point. And this wasn’t your usual rammed house party posse. While tottering up the stairs, not looking where I was going, I physically collided with James Cordon (#embarrassing) before rounding a corner to see Sharleen Spiteri and Oliver Cheshire (not together).

moynat matches GQ

Me

Moynat Matches GQ Style

James Cordon & Eliza Doolittle

Moynat, Matches, GQ Style

Oliver Cheshire

Up the next flight were David Gandy, Eliza Doolittle, Patrick Grant and Jack Guinness. In celebration of the occasion Douglas Booth, Nicola Formichetti, Tom Odell, Sam Smith, Craig Green and Agi & Sam had all been enlisted to create their own playlists. I think Nicola’s may have been my fave, it involved Miley Cyrus, the Spice Girls, Sean Paul and Rhianna… Hello my new gym/life soundtrack.

Moynat, Matches, GQ Style

David Gandy

Moynat, Matches, GQ Style

Patrick Grant & Jack Guinness

After mucho mincing which was fab, and losing my lipstick which was less so, we decided hit the road and decamped to Soho House for a nightcap.

Love Ella. X

Posted on by Ella Catliff in Parties 1 Comment