Since it arrived in my inbox earlier this week I’ve ummed and ahhhd about whether or not to post the Rag & Bone Pre Fall 2013 collection. At first glance it is SO not me. That’s not to say it’s not awesome, it totally is. Silky drawstring tracksuit bottoms, tech fabrics, neat zip-up bombers and slouchy tailoring make for an androdgynous take on sports luxe that is both achingly cool and the polar opposite of my usual girly, blousey, preppy aesthetic. But then again, wasn’t my New Years Fasholution number 3 to take more sartorial risks? And wouldn’t rocking a futuristic, ice-white Rag & Bone mesh dress achieve that aim perfectly?
As I scrolled through the collection I also noticed a transition into more Ella friendly styles like playful A-line shapes adorned with exquisitely detailed collars. On closer inspection (thank you Style.com for your ever excellent magnification) I realised that said collar detailing wasn’t the usual delicate embellishment but athletic inspired graphic eyelets, genius! The leather looks also got my pulse racing, especially the slick black shift dress and as for the peachy tweed shorts suit… two words: fashion heaven.
Love Ella. X
Scooping up the feted New Establishment prize at this year’s British Fashion Awards confirmed that Erdem has well and truly made the leap from rising fashion star to serious global brand. But let’s face it, most of us knew that already. Since receiving the Fashion Fringe Award mere moments after launching his label in 2005, the Canadian born designer has picked up virtually every accolade and scored every prestigious stockist worth working one’s chicly clad derriere off to land. Obviously he’s an immensely skilled craftsman – you don’t dress everyone from Samantha Cameron to Alexa Chung without an excellent grasp of the basics – but I maintain that Erdem’s phenomenal success is due, at least in part, to the fact he creates clothes that women really, really want to wear. Every season he delivers silhouettes that suit mere mortals, as well as six foot supermodels. Add mouthwatering colour palettes and pretty-as-a-picture prints into the mix and it’s no wonder that Erdem’s divine dresses make shoppers squeal with glee. But while Erdem could most likely have continued to churn out slight variations on the uber popular floral print, garden party theme and still sold out every season, he hasn’t, and for that I applaud him.
For Pre Fall 2013, Erdem continued to explore the flirtation with subversion that permeated his Spring collection. In place of previous seasons’ ladylike lace came plastic, leather and high shine PVC. The designer’s fabric experimentation extended to include lamé tweeds, semi sheer organza, laser cut leather broderie anglaise and iridescent paillettes resembling huge fish scales in a palette that included everything from eye-popping pinks, acid edged greens and neon brights inky midnight shades and soft yolk yellow hues. But for all its surprising fabric choices, peek-a-boo detailing and seductive undertones, Erdem’s Pre Fall 2013 collection is ultimately feminine, wearable and utterly covetable… Personally, I wouldn’t want it any other way.
Love Ella. X
What to say about the Chanel Metiers d’Arts 2013 collection… Held in the majestic surroundings of Linlithgow Castle in Edinburgh, or rather Edimbourg, I can imagine that the show was utterly spectacular. Not having managed to wangle an invite this year (fingers, toes and eyes crossed for next time) I watched the livestream from my bedroom in a state of awe and wonder. After recovering from my over-excitement at the incredible hair styling and Tudor fabulousness of the whole thing, I concluded that Scottish sartorial tradition lends itself brilliantly to the Chanel aesthetic. Think hearty tweeds, chunky cardigans and tartans galore with billowing chiffon creations providing the perfect foil for low-slung woolen trousers and mannish silhouettes.
Chanel’s Metiers d’Arts collections are intended to showcase the time tested techniques used by the craftsmen and women without whom Haute Couture would have long since ceased to exist. Last year at university my coursemates and I were lucky enough to be visited by a few of the ladies from Maison Lesage, one of the principal Parisian embroidery atelier’s employed by Chanel. Having seen some of their work up close and learned a little about the painstaking process involved, I can seriously appreciate the many hours and sheer skill required to create garments like these. While the collection did deliver some wonderfully wearable looks, for every cosy scarf, kilt pleated skirt and Coco worthy boucle jacket came a feather-and-lace confection that exuded pure fashion fantasy. Combining the rich heritage of the House with his own flair for the dramatic, Chanel Metiers d’Arts 2013 proved that despite having held shows everywhere from the Great Wall of China to the Palace of Versailles, Karl Lagerfeld’s still got the ability to out do himself.
Love Ella. X
I’m ashamed to admit that before September, I knew absolutely nothing about Jenni Kayne. But after attending her presentation during New York Fashion Week I can safely say you’ll be seeing a lot more of her divine designs on this blog! Jenni is a California girl through and through and in theory her laid back “nothing precious” aesthetic don’t sound like they would be remotely up my street. In practice, quite the opposite is true. When Jenni Kayne says “easy to wear” she’s not talking about tracksuit bottoms, au contraire. Her softly tailored separates, punchy prints and adorable accessories are far from sloppy but, crucially, every single piece is completely and utterly wearable.
For Pre Fall 2013 Jenni Kayne has served up the kind of collection that anyone in their right mind would want to own. Mannish overcoats and sleeveless tux jackets are given a feminine twist by way of sleek detailing (contrast colour lapels anyone?) and a deliciously vibrant palette. Silhouettes come sleek without being restrictive and bold block hues are juxtaposed with prints of the animal and digital variety. These are clothes that would turn heads and Fashion Week but wont send your boyfriend screaming from the room… Plus any designer who styles their look book with knee high socks is guaranteed to be a winner with me.
Love Ella. X
As you’ve probably gathered, my sartorial taste can be a little eclectic. While I lust after the grown-up glamour of Temperley London and covet 3.1 Phillip Lim’s modern cool I also have a SERIOUS weakness for all things adorable. Plaid minis, Peter Pan collars and picture pretty prints are guaranteed to get my pulse racing. The Pre Fall 2013 collection from Alice + Olivia combines all of the above and boy, do es it do it well.
I know “cuteness” isn’t everyone’s cup of tea and have long since given up force my all-black wearing, Alexander Wang loving housemate into anything resembling a blouse. But as knee high sock devotee myself, the mere sight of an oversized bow sends me weak at the knees and Alice + Olivia designer Stacey Bendet serves up cuteness in spades. Think matchy matchy skirt suits, contrast collar shirting, graphic prints, bold colours and feminine silhouettes. It wouldn’t be an Alice + Olivia collection without a couple of killer frocks and the brand’s Pre Fall offerings include a darling drop waisted lace cocktail number and a fabulous floor sweeping red confection. That said, for me it’s the separates that really stand out this (pre) season. Namely plaid city shorts, boxy blazers and girly tailoring that boast Blair Waldorf worthy levels of Park Avenue Princess prep.
Love Ella. X