Saturday, 20 February 2010

Live catwalk illustration at Jasper Garvida by Kelly Sheppard

Jasper Garvida

The lights were dimmed and everyone turned their attention towards the catwalk entrance, anticipating the first look. Moments later everyone was still in the dark and crackling static of a radio adjusting stations was playing over the sound system. A jazzy tune clicked into play and a satin emerald green dress with a black triangle cut out and loose, full sleeves set the tone.

The emerald, black, white and grey coloured collection was inspired by the 1920s, particularly the Art Deco movement, and it was clear. Models strut down the runway in black fedoras tilted over their hair, which was curled into chin length bobs, and dark maroon lipstick. Highlights of the show included the Deco-inspired embellishments and the variety of coats. Details included triangle shaped panels, ruffled detailing and sharp 90 degreed angles on the shoulders of sculpted dresses.

This season Jasper Garvida’s show was sponsored by Miele, a German premium domestic and commercial appliance manufacturer, in honour of the launch of the Miele Fashion Prize competition to help nurture design talent in the UK. 

Words: Maggie Dolan 
Images: David Coleman

Vox pops outside Jasper Garvida

Liz McClarnon, ex Atomic Kitten: "I’m a massive fan of Jaspers work but I have never been to his show before. I’m late so I have to rush, thank you though!"

Beverley Knight: "I’ve been at shows all day, I went home to get changed quickly, I was in such a rush. I’ve not seen his work that much before, but he invited me because he said he likes my music - that was really lovely! I really love London Fashion Week - the whole day has been show after show. I really think it’s great the creativity that comes out of LFW, it’s unrivalled and unparallel anywhere in the world. Britain has innovation, Paris does the classic, Italy does a more opulent look and NY is NY but we just give you that edge, I love it."

Sophie Anderton: "I am a big fan, I am running so late though! I love Jasper, I love wearing his stuff. I was supposed to be wearing a sequin dress but I didn’t even have time to change so unfortunately I think I was being a little adventurous when I thought I could get to all these show today. I just throw my look on in the morning. I love my Heidi Mottram clutch, it's Fashion Week proof!"

Words: Emma Drinnan
Images: Ljiljana Pajovic

Fit for a modern Venus: Jasper Garvida AW10

It’s his careful diligence and natural talent that made Garvida winner of Project Catwalk back in 2008, and saw him subsequently deliver pulse-racing collections of his own.  Now in his third season, Garvida, who cites his core aesthetic as “ultra feminine”, presents his collection entitled 'Venus', drawing from the roaring Twenties, film noir and Art Deco. Fiona Anderson finds out more about this rising star and his AW10 collection.

“I actually started the collection with this green stone called Malachite, which I saw at the Natural History Museum.  It’s now formed the basis for all our prints.  I also researched Twenties print techniques, and looked at Deco buildings like the Chrysler and the Eiffel tower.  This season you can expect to see cashmere, silk, organza and my signature embellishment.  Also patchwork, and chunky knits.”
Taking inspiration from the most unlikely of places, Garvida admits that his creative process isn’t always a smooth ride, with plenty of mistakes made along the way. “You have to make a lot of mistakes, there’s a lot of experimentation.  I always try and progress, and to do that is by learning”.

In a season when money’s tight, budgets have been slashed and sales figures have plummeted, Garvida lacks the jaded cynicism of many established designers, instead remaining patient, self aware and realistic.  “What keeps me going is my love for women, and my appreciation of women.  I think fashion will continue to evolve, and in terms of supporting young designers, it could be better.  I find during Fashion Week it’s very difficult to compete with the mega brands.  But I’m a patient person, and I know that [success] will come with experience and time”. 

Despite Garvida’s many high profile achievements, what makes him most proud is much more personal. Leaving his family behind in Canada, and rebuilding his life here in London has had a profound effect for the designer.  “London’s where fashion found me.  I studied at CSM and after graduation I haven’t stopped working.  I’m very grateful to this city and for what it has given me”.  And it seems Garvida’s zeal for work and passion for design won’t stop here.  ‘’I would love to be able to show in Paris, and to be noticed worldwide”, however, achieving, “good sales”, and having the chance to, “give something back”, in the form of teaching, rates high on his agenda too.

Before we end, Jasper tells me, “I would like to be part if fashion history, it’s a difficult one, but I’ll try my best”.  To me, that one sentence sums up this designer in a nutshell.  Intensely, yet quietly, driven, innately talented and with star-quality coarsing through his veins, Garvida will always offer his best.  So far, his “best”, seems pretty impressive.

Image: David Coleman

Backstage at Jasper Garvida

Images: Liliana Pajovic

Illustration live at Jacob Kimmie by Louise O'Keeffe

Jacob Kimmie

Images- above: Doh Lee, below: Marsy Hild Thorsdottir

‘Pilgrim’, Kimmie’s Autumn/winter 2010 collection was a theatrical black and white parade of long, lean silhouettes in leather leggings, chunky wool hooded knits and dragging trains.  Inspired by “Modern, ancient temples, and ritual dressing as night”, the collection was set to gospel house beats and tribal dance music that re-enforced the heightened expectation.

The gowns were silk, draping pools of black, with cutaway backs and intricate lace details, accessorised with clustered feather earrings to finish the look. The models' hair was tightly gathered in to knot buns, dark, and heavy eye make up which was hidden behind ornate silver masks, and moody black veils. The finale, and highlight of the show was white silk bridal gown, the model carrying a baby also dressed in white and staring back enquiringly.  Kimmie produced a stunning and dramatic show of fierce, beautiful and wearable pieces, with intricate embellishments and edgy accessories. 

Words: Christine Pettman


Carlotta Gherzi’s clothes are made for the market. They’re wearable pieces for the everyday, but edged out and updated season to season. Her AW10 collection for Sado was relaxed, cool and comfortable.

Slouchy wool sweaters were soft and knobbly in grey, white and sea foam green suitable for going to the shop on a Sunday morning. A paneled leather dress and black coat-dress zipped up and belted for cocktail hour. Body con and draped dresses in black with red or silver brocade accents are perfect for 2010’s Christmas parties.

Layered ribbon detailing added texture and depth to primary red and blue leggings for the extra bold woman. High-necked zipper collars added a strong shoulder to several looks. This is a collection sure to land in the closets of confident, fashion forward woman.

Words: Maggie Dolan
Images: Doh Lee

The scene at Jacob Kimmie

Images: David Maunder

Images: Marsy Hild Thordottir

Backstage at Jacob Kimmie

Images: David Maunder

Live catwalk illustration at Iris Van Herpen by Kelly Sheppard

Sophie Anderton at Iris Van Herpen

"This is the first season that I really took the plunge and ventured into the territory of up-and-coming designers and I must say I am overwhelmed at the volume of talent there is out there climbing the ranks of the fashion industry. What I love most about these new designers' collections is that they are very small, which means exclusivity. It is such a great feeling to wear a striking new design that so few people know or own,"

Words: Jess Whyte
Image: David Maunder

Iris Van Herpen

Shot with a Flip Video

There was electricity in the air as the audience of seasoned show-goers jostled and elbowed to secure their seat at the catwalk’s edge.  The room was packed with serious fashionistas, some seriously eccentric looks, and the sense that we were about to be seriously spoilt for choice.  Van Herpen has a reputation amongst the fashion brigade as a rapidly evolving star and, with James Brown on hair; she is certainly reeling in an exciting bunch of high profilers.  As the lights dimmed, and the heavy, thudding beat kicked in, the tension was palpable. 

The first look to hit the catwalk was a nude, super short, tailored dress with thick, woven braids looped and plaited at the hem, followed by a stunning taupe creation, quivering with tubes of bouncy, slashed fabric, shaking and slinking in a feat of fabulous engineering as the model moved down the catwalk.  Next up: the same slashed, ribbon-like, structured cutting, but this time in black, with enormous wave-like shoulders stretching out beyond the body and sweeping back under the arms in a metallic, shiny material that glittered under the lights. Ever more slashed, shivering creations thundered down, one with golden slashed wings shooting off from the torso, another in shimmery bronze, with shaped, voluminous hips and shoulders like armour, another with slashing that looked like the hard shell of an exquisite bronze beetle, but yet was moving and swaying as if having come to life.  Boys and girls teetered on chunky, curved platform heels, bedecked with slices of that same shiny gold, and pale, wispy hair was piled atop the head like soft, candyfloss clouds.  A sheer, draped, coffee coloured silken dress slunk down, with taupe slashing hidden underneath it, and beautiful, curling black feathers were applied over the eyes.

As the show closed, and Van Herpen appeared, she was met with emphatic whoops and cheers from the crowd, who were clearly as blown over by her staggeringly complex creations as I was.  The slashing, so fine and accurate, created movement that was so in sync it was almost hypnotic.  A beautifully realised collection, Van Herpen proved that her enormous talent equalled her rapidly expanding reputation. 

Words: Fiona Anderson
Images: David Coleman

Backstage at Iris Van Herpen

Images: Marsy Hild Thorsdottir

Jessica manicures in the Media Centre

Chipped nails and dry hands are not appropriate for style press at fashion week – thank goodness Jessica nails are on hand (literally) in the media centre to give us a buff and polish! Manicurist of the Year 2008-2009 Heather Brown recommends Jessica polish in “Blush” for a clean, fresh feel that’s perfect for spring.

Words: Hannah Kane
Image: Leigh Keily

Backstage at Sado

Image: Kristen Blow

Is reading a trend? Apparently so. Models backstage a Sado seemed fond of the written word...

Images: Doh Lee

The scene at Iris Van Herpen

In the queue

Sophie Anderton in the front row

Now that’s an outfit

Images: Doh Lee

Illustration live at Vauxhall Fashion Scout by Alia Gargum - Prophetik and Iris Van Herpen


 Iris Van Herpen

Live illustration at House of Blue Eyes by Hana Termanini

House of Blue Eyes

Images- above: Doh Lee, below Marsy Hild Thorsdottir

Shot with a Flip Video

Writhing on the floor passionately singing Elton john among rainbows, bunting, sipping cups of tea and eating cupcakes is how I spent my afternoon. I was of course at the House of BlueEyes presentation. This collection entitled ‘Revolution and Love’ was, as expected, colourful and edgy. A mixture of bright metallics and shocking colours, Indian embroidery embellished flowers and pom-poms in varying sizes. Johnny and his team of designers have reworked vintage pieces - my favourite was a tulle skirt and gold Mickey Mouse handbag that in a past life was a lunchbox.

The presentation itself took the audience into a magical world, the structure of show was influenced by Parisian salons with a London underground edge. A psychedelic fusion of futuristic pop art with Sixties free love and peace.

Johnny to me to “not just fucking stand there, I needed to work it” and I did. Free spirited I danced and sang with body-painted models, the energy was incredible.

As Johnny revealed to me last week when I interviewed him, he likes to take a different approach to his shows and it was refreshing to have a change from the traditional idea of a catwalk show.

The models and audience have now spilt out into the hallway and I can still feel the love through the cheers and singing. They are off on a parade through Covent Garden handing out flowers and cupcakes, so keep a look out. You can’t help but smile at his ethos: you should be proud of who you are and feel empowered. After today I certainly do.

Words: Emma Drinnan

Overheard backstage at House of Blue Eyes

Johnny BlueEyes' pre-show pep talk to the models!

"Feel the music, feel the sexuality, you are a creature of the light!"

James Brown, hair stylist for Iris Van Herpen

On the hair:
"The look is goth meets Pre-Raphaelite, it’s a combination of both.  It’s a bit of a curl, a bit of a frizz, and the hair is just pinned according to the shape of the girls' face, and then just swept to the side.  It’s a creative mess, but a very beautiful mess".
On Iris Van Herpen:
"I don’t normally do young, new designers, but I saw her clothes and I thought, 'Wow, I want to do that show'.  I don’t need the practise after 20 years, but I was so excited after I saw the clothes I really wanted to do it".
Words: Fiona Anderson
Image: Marsy Hild Thorsdottir