27 November 2017

Rohmir SS18

Rohmir SS18

I remember my first invitation to Rohmir's runway show at Fashion Scout, some years ago now. The room wasn't madly busy, at least compared to many of the other shows Tazz and I had squeezed into, and there was a silky scarf on top of the usual array of minature beauty products and health drinks in each of our goodie bags. I recall at the time feeling somewhat underwhelmed by the collection, although I must admit my younger, naïve mind was very much more excited by flamboyance and eccentricity over refined glamour. In hindsight, the collection was probably very wearable.

Despite having been invited to every Rohmir fashion show since, this is my first blog post featuring the Russian designer Olga Roh, and of the many and varied collections I saw at London Fashion Week this season gone, hers was - much to my own surprise - my favourite. Truly, it was a pleasure to observe just how much the label has evolved, and to acknolwedge my own appreciation for beautiful fashion.

Rohmir SS18

Appropriately titled "Sparkling", the Rohmir SS18 collection is one of timeless beauty and sophisticated glamour, with dazzling details throughout. The luxury ready-to-wear pieces, which include summer dresses, pant suits, capes and flowing gowns, not only take inspiration from classic Italian allure, they are a celebration of quintessential feminity. Floral prints and lace took centre stage on the runway, alongside bejewelled dresses, sheer blouses, and glittering statement jewellery. It is difficult not to imagine many of these ensembles parting the crowd at a grand ball, or even - dare I say it - upstaging the bride at a wedding.

The collection aside, there were many additional elements that made the show as much a spectacle as the clothes. The soundtrack of the show was live Italian opera over a modern backing track, an aural reflection of Rohmir's modern-classical woman. The models, too, walked the runway with poise and elegance, many with a smile that shone as brightly as the spotlights bouncing off the gemstones.

More importantly, however, was the choice of models themselves. The decision to include maturer women on the runway would be commended by Caryn Franklin's All Walks Beyond The Catwalk, which campaigns for greater diversity in the fashion industry. As Caryn has herself asserted, it is the maturer women who often have the most money to spend on designer fashion, therefore to frequently use younger, often teenage models in fashion shows and advertisements would appear counter-intuitive.

In contrast, a delightfully unexpected addition to the catwalk was the three young girls wearing childrenswear equivalents of the main collection. Walking down the runway in very little (if any) make-up, hand-in-hand with the professional models like younger siblings emulating their big sisters, the girls stole the show with their equally beautiful attire, and a sweet and smiley innocence that lit up the room.

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25 October 2017

Explore The City

If, like me, you are neither a runner, gym-goer, or active sportsperson (that is to say mildly to moderately lazy), it's all too easy to overlook how very little exercise you might be doing compared to your peers. That however changes when you start wearing a FitBit Charge 2 fitness tracker, which over the past several weeks has been wonderfully useful in informing me how relatively unfit I am. Because if anything is going to nudge me towards a more regular exercise routine and longer lunchtime walks (to the village shop and back doesn't count), it's a pedometer shamefully displaying fewer than two-thousand steps before I crawl into bed.

John Lewis | Explore The City

Of course, I could always do with extra motivation. And to that end, the clever people behind Britain's beloved department store, John Lewis, have developed an interactive tool to encourage said exercise while exploring the abundant delights of the capital. After inputting your London postcode, the tool highlights local attractions and green spaces, with the estimated number of steps one might achieve during each visit.

After investigating the Barbican Centre at the end of summer, it seemed appropriate to visit another local landmark I knew full well existed, but hadn't yet made any effort to explore. It was only a few fashion weeks ago that I realised just how close Tate Britain was to my flat, having wandered over Vauxhall Bridge to see a fashion show at the Chelsea College of Arts next door. And so it was that on a remarkably hangover-free Sunday, Maddy and I crossed the Thames for an afternoon of British art.

Tate Britain Tate Britain Tate Britain Tate Britain Tate Britain

For a spot on the river that appears strikingly untouristy compared to London's South Bank, Tate Britain was teeming with visitors. We all wandered about the gallery in a similarly unhurried fashion, scanning the rooms as we passed through, hovering occasionally in front a painting or sculpture that caught the eye more than others. Half the ground floor was dedicated to artwork by J.M.W. Turner, which begged the question: just how much time did a single artist have on their hands to produce several rooms' worth of near-priceless artwork?

However many thousand steps later, Maddy and I had completed our circuit of the Tate, although quite possibly having missed a dozen rooms on account of galleries and museums being built like mazes. A tad more culture in our noggins and a few more kilometres' worth of activity in our legs can never be a bad thing.

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16 October 2017

Leaf Xia SS18

The eccentric SS18 collection from Chinese designer Leaf Xia was an eruption of colour and pattern against the dark backdrop of the Freemasons' Hall. Each ensemble on the marble runway was a visual delight from head to toe, featuring block colour dresses and jackets, patchwork, pleats and ribbons. These are garments for the bold and the brave, although I honestly would be keen for a menswear collection to match.

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© Joseph Kent / www.unlimitedbyjk.com

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