Yesterday I was lucky enough to visit London Fashion Weekend, and I'm always going to be completely truthful in this blog and not plug things I'm not interested in - but I was actually pretty disappointed. Although some of the designers were wonderful, the event itself really didn't deliver. It was the best of times, it was the worst of times.
Now let's do the more positive parts first! Complaints aside, there were a few designers that really caught my eye, such as Markus Lupfer, the ever brilliant Sophia Webster, Rogues, Antipodium, Cambridge Satchel Company x Vivienne Westwood, Julian Hakes, and Wolf And Moon Jewellery. Now these designers and collaborations all had something in common; they were all quirky, unusual and above all fun. You can always tell when a designer really enjoys making their work and it's evident in the outcome - an exciting collection that practically oozes passion. I really fell head over heels for Markus Lupfer - glittery pink joggers and sequin turtles may not be what I usually go for but MAN these were something else. Although I love sleek, chic pieces I definitely found myself more attracted to bright, colourful, loud prints and patterns this year - pieces that were just a little bit more unusual, as you can see from the photos. I also found myself lusting over the INSANE Julian Hakes shoes which appeared in the Georgia Hardinge show during fashion week, and are currently on show at the V&A in the 'Shoes: Pleasure and Pain' exhibition which I can't wait to see. Definitely following in McQueen's footsteps, isn't he?!
Amazingly, a few of my favourites were actually affordable (when I say affordable I don't mean to me, because I'm a poor graduate, but say if I actually had a little bit of money) - not anything ridiculous like Marina London, Asudari, and Solace London, which I truly loved but could never bring myself to spend that amount of money on, even if I had it.
Mouth-wateringly delicious favourite pieces and brands:
Wolf and Moon
Now, I normally LOVE the Saatchi Gallery, and I normally LOVE fashion week at Somerset House. But combining the two just did not work. The new location for the fashion week event was incredibly crowded, hot, and basically just unpleasant. Not only that, but there was just much less stuff to do there. A few years ago we had the bueno lounge to relax in, sponsors giving away refreshments, stylists and fittings going on - but this year it was simple clothing rails, accessories, and the catwalk. I used to love the location of Somerset House too - it was always buzzing with a great atmosphere, without being so incredibly crowded that you actually couldn't move.
Onto complaint number two... Never Fully Dressed would have made the cut onto my list of favourites above, but my body had a falling out with them... I fell absolutely head over heels in love with an organza lace dress, and was elated when I saw the price tag read £40 (my budget for the day). I rifled through the dresses, confused that I couldn't find any size labels, and asked the sales assistant who mentioned that they only stock one size. One size. Now, as you can imagine, that one size is made for models and stick insects. She said it would fit an 8-12 and encouraged me to try on the dress, which didn't zip up and left me feeling incredibly disappointed and sad to miss out on the dress, but above all terribly self-conscious and concerned about my figure. I'm a size 10-12. The dress didn't fit because although I fit within it's 'size margin', I actually have boobs and hips, like a LOT of women do. However, determined not to give up, I figured that they had just stocked sample sizes for the event - most designers tend to sell seconds or sample pieces for cheaper, which are usually made to fit models. I browsed their website, determined to find this dress in my size - but surprise surprise, they really DO only stock one size, even online. Maybe this makes sense to them if they want only a certain body type wearing their designs, but honestly it just makes people feel terrible about themselves. Especially at an event such as London Fashion Weekend where anyone can attend, they need to cater to everyone and not just stock these 'one size fits all' bodyshaming pieces. I wonder how many other people left feeling the same way as me. Later that day, I challenged them about it over instagram and was of course ignored - I wouldn't be surprised if they had the same response from many other people. I should point out though that this is of course not just limited to Never Fully Dressed, many brands are guilty of the same issue - it just becomes a problem especially when fashion is supposed to be continuously moving forward, not back into a world where only size zeros are celebrated and rewarded.
Am I being too harsh? What do you think?
London Fashion Weekend, although I usually love you, I think this will be my last visit unless I'm ever lucky enough to get invited to the main events at Somerset House. Although most of the designers and brands were wonderful and very exciting to see, after being there for about an hour and leaving empty handed, my sister, mum and I left before even bothering to sit down to the catwalk show. We instead went into town and window shopped, drank tea, visited some friends, and ended up having a much better day.