Friday, 27 February 2009

Primark studded jacket on sale!

Last month I made my new Primark leather biker jacket my Primark Pick of the week. And i'm sure you'll all be pleased to know it's holding up well. Here are a couple of last months pics as a reminder: It's also the jacket I wore to the arutyunov show that I posted my review of yesterday.

However this blurb isn't just a recap of all the other lovely posts i've written, but a prelude to my exciting news! For all of you wonderful folks who admired my studded biker jacket, coveted it for your own, or who land on this page whilst searching for leather biker jackets (according to my stat counter, this happens alot!) I have momentous news.

For the jacket has been reduced and is now £5 on the Primark sale rail!!
I saw it in the Oxford Circus store last night (I had a bit of a Primark binge that I will be writing all about tomorrow) and there were still 2 full rails of them left, so if you're quick, you might still catch them! I don't know what other stores it is being stocked in, but if you want the jacket its probably worth popping into your local primark today or tomorrow to check it out. That shop is crazy; i've never known anywhere with such a high stock turnover, so if you leave it any later than that you'll probably miss out!
This is todays heads up for all you Primark lovers out there! Aren't I good to you!?

Love, Tor x

Thursday, 26 February 2009

The Arutyunov show and a lesson about canopes

Hey Everyone,

Sorry the reviews of the shows so far have been in no particular order! Only one more to go after this one and then you have my fashion week round up to enjoy. This was another one from the weekend, but what with all these wonderful fashion shows, work, and a two day online marketing conference to attend I have been well and truly pooped this week, so sorry for the slow posting and my string of excuses!!

The Arutyunov was my first (and only, actually) Couture show. And despite the fact that i'd never heard of them until I walked into the room (in my defence, they are Russian and it was the first time they'd shown in London) I was pretty impressed. Although I was sat on the second row, the floor level catwalk made taking pictures almost impossible. Nevertheless here are the snaps I got:
And here, of course, are the prettiest of all the models:

Amie and I take a minute to pose as we wait to go into the show. Not really sure why i'm holding my handbag like a shield, but isn't her jacket adorable?! A Christmas gift from moi!
This was one of the two shows my sister went to with me, and this was Amie's favourite show. Whilst not particularly directional or headline worthy, all of the dresses were showstopping and very very pretty. And sometimes all a girl really wants is a pretty dress! Massive full skirts covered in lace and dripping with jewels jostled with floating chiffon circles that bounced as the models walked and floor length tiered ruffles. I was a big fan of the orange puff ball dress, who's skirt looked like a Chinese lantern. Amie liked the dresses with skirts that were big big big!

And my god, the shoes! These models didn't walk down the catwalk they teetered in shoes so high I suspect they were intended to deliberately inhibit the way the girls moved to make them seem even more vulnerable that their tiny frames already imply. But don't take my word for it! You'll find pictures of the shoes and better pictures of the dresses right here, if you're interested!
Our enjoyment of the show was aided dramatically by the abundance of lovely after show champagne and the excellent canapes. Mini falafel, prawns on skewers, smoked salmon, seriously strong cheese, and tiny pastry puffs. After an hour of so they even brought out the dessert canope selection. We especially enjoyed the mini chocolate truffle cakes and fruit cups. Yum!
And the lessons about canopes i'm sure you're all waiting with baited breath to hear:
  • Never eat the prawns! My sisters warned me, I didn't listen and my stomach certainly regretted it in the morning
  • Stand in the middle of the room. Contrary to the widespread believe that fashion folks dont eat, those people were vultures! If we'd been stood at the back there wouldn;t have been a morsel left by the time the trays made it to us

And finally:

  • Always take two of each dessert! Seriously, those things are delicious and one petite gateux just isn't ever going to be enough!

So there you have it, fashion and food: my two favourite things (hey, i'm chubby, its predictable!)at the same time! Result!



Tuesday, 24 February 2009

London Fashion Week aw09 - Day 3

Firstly apologies for the delay in posting these; who wants to read about what happened at LFW on Sunday on a Tuesday!? But blogger has been hating me and rejecting my photo uploads. And this just isn't any fun without photos! Secondly, apologies for not showing you what I was wearing but a) I got delayed by a phone call and was in a massive rush and b) it was far too dull to even talk about! I kept on the skinny jeans and t shirt I had been wearing to help my boyfriend build flat pack that morning (it seems that lately ikea is my life!) and threw on my grey brogues and my red St Michael coat. Needless to say I felt very unfashionable indeed.

My first stop was the Modernist presentation on Carnaby street. I wasn't really very impressed with either the presentation or the collection. On the london fashion week website when asked what had inspired the collection they replied; “Folk, craftwork and the macabre,” “the concept of an African winter. A lot of dark textures with flashes of metallic leather and shearling.” Whilst I will say that the attention to detail with the stitching and the panelling was impressive, and the sense of the starkness and macabre was overwhelming, to me the whole thing seemed rehashed, including the black birdcages that were the only set.
The item I liked most was a cropped boxy jacket with fringing on the epilets, but it felt to me like something I had seen so many times before.

From there I went on the the Bernard Chandran show in the Science Museum. The show was due to start at 7.30, and learning from yesterdays mistake, I arrived at 7.10....only to sit and wait for over an hour before they even started seating people for the show! What to do!

It was worth the wait though. To the beat of booming pulsating thudding music (which made my head hurt) the show opened to reveal a wealth of amazing dresses. I didn't read the blurb as this time I didn't have a seat, so I don't know what the theme was supposed to be, but it felt very urban space man to me: lots of muted metallics and sharp angles, and of course, oversized Star Wars style hoods!
This structure seemed more important than anything else. Like almost every other show there was also a very 80s overtone; lots of big shoulders and oversized sleeves. I was also a big fan of the elbow length wide topped gloves that I saw here and at Modernist.
I really liked the gathering along the sleeves and bodices, and I can see this being big on the highstreet next winter! Apologies for the blurry movement in all of the pictures - those models were stomping down the catwalk!
So far all of the shows i've been to have flashed by like a blur; do they really only last two minutes or does it just feel like it!?

I read an article in the london paper last week that said there are two types of people who go to London Fashion Week; those who go to see, and those who go to be seen. Well I'm definitely in the "to see category",mostly because i'm not famous or fashionable enough to be seen, but also because the whole thing just makes me feel even more socially awkward than I normally am! New additions to my list of things to work on this year: small talk and making introductions. Even when I can tell people are trying to make an effort (thanks people who did!) I just don't know what to say and feel like i'm making a fool of myself. I hope i'm not!

Straight home after the show (without even stopping for a little drink, I had to be up at 6.30 the following morning for work!) I'm so damn glam aren't I?! But at least I have tonight's Independent Fashion Bloggers party to behave recklessly at to make up for it!

I don't know what i'm looking forward to most....meeting all the amazing bloggers I read every day or putting on my outfit!



Monday, 23 February 2009

Young Creative Entrepreneur Awards, or a lesson in punctuality

Bearing in mind that I live way out in suburbia, Saturday morning was a fairly early start. My lovely bf Mike decided he would escort me to today’s events but only if I would put him on the blog. Oh the vanity of the man! So here we are looking seriously happy about the journey ahead:

Looking at this photo, I’m not happy with my outfit. I thought that I looked kooky casual (Betsey Johnson style) but it turns out I look like a fat teenager. Ah well, we live and learn!

The awards presentation was due to start at 11.30 and we arrived at the Natural History Museum at 11.20. I had no idea that getting into the “big building” would be so hard! I had to queue to get my badge and then show it to 4 different members of security before I could get through. I arrived at the presentation at 11.30 sharp, just in time for it to start. As you can tell by my view, this was a big mistake:

Note to self, allow more time to get through security and always arrive at least 20 minutes before you thought you needed to! I could blame myself but I think I’ll blame all the cancellations on the underground instead.

The awards were for the UK Young Creative Entrepreneur of the Year and the International Young Creative Entrepreneur of the year. The winners were Simeon Hartwig from the UK and Oscar Lawalata from Indonesia. Simeon is a 5ft6” designer who started his company Bantum Clothing to produce street style clothing for smaller men like himself. Oscar has two boutiques and three labels; Oscar Lawalata Culture, Oscar Lawalata Couture, and Oscar Lawalata for uniforms. Despite my relative late arrival, I did manage to shuffle my way close enough to get a snap of the international winner with his award;
And here are some photos of the winners designs from the PR pack. The first two are by Oscars and the second two are by Simeon:
After this and a sneaky glass of champagne (at 11.30 in the morning! Imagine!) I decided to have a walk around the exhibitions. I felt incredibly star struck when I saw Hilary Alexander (who has an air of glamorous confidence surrounding her) rifling through some rails in the Topshop new generation area and being incredibly complimentary about some dresses. And then I saw Fred Butler, who I think is amazing, looking incredible next to a stand of her jewellery, looking stunning in a bright orange jumpsuit. I had to make myself walk away so I didn’t look like a stalker/loon.

I should’ve stayed where I was however, as with the next person I spoke to the conversation went like this:
Rude lady “Where did you get your scarf from?”
Me: “H&M”
Rude lady: “Oh, how much did it cost?”
Me: “£5.99, why do you ask?”
Rude lady: “You can tell” and then she turned and walked away.

Can you imagine?! I didn’t realise you had to be rude to people at these events or that H&M scarves were such a terrible thing…maybe I should have told her my shorts and t shirt were from primark too; that might’ve made her head explode!

Still: you can’t let one rude person ruin your good time, and I really did have an incredible morning, despite the fact that I couldn't really see much of what was going on during the awards ceremony.

More show reviews to follow…

Love Tor xx

Saturday, 21 February 2009

Ashish AW09: My first ever fashion show!

HI everyone,

When I read on the blurb that the theme of the Ashish show was “run away to the circus” I was a little disappointed. The circus theme feels so tired and old; Britney Spears is doing a circus tour (borrowing her costumes from the circus tour that Madonna just did I suspect) so have Take That, and all the bowler and top hats in top shop are already reduced. Yawn, yawn, yawn!

But it actually wasn’t what I was expecting at all, and circus was a very tenuous link. There wasn’t a red jacket or top hat in sight!

The show opened with a fab acrobatic display from La Clique and then VV Brown came onto the stage and started singing, and the magic began!
Can you believe I took all these photos?! If you click on them they should get bigger!I’m not about to get all conceited, but I’m really proud of them! It feels so surreal that normally I look at these kinds of pictures online lustfully after the shows and I’ve just had the chance to take them myself! Does anyone else look at these photos and immediately think of the Fresh Prince of Bel Air? I really can imagine Jazzy Jeff in all of these outfits being thrown out the mansion by Mr Banks!

The pompoms on jumpers, trousers, and everything (!) theme is very eighties TV presenter (here's one we made earlier on Blue Peter, anyone?) as are the baggy sweaters teamed with fitted leggings and harem pants, further proof that we’ll all be nodding to the eighties next winter, and also very easy to replicate at home with DIY. My sister pointed out that you can buy packs of those pompoms from the children’s section of any department store for around an English pound! I'm not a massive fan of the fluro leopard print as I find it so damn unwearable, but it was the perfect foil for what was an amazing collection, particularly some of the smaller details; I want almost all of those jumpers in my wardrobe!
Speaking of jumpers, my "must have" piece of the collection wasn't the statement dresses or the sequinned jump suits, but this sweater. The zebra detail in sequins and the ruffles for his mane? Genius!

The show was fantastic, although of course I have nothing to compare it to. But, having just been to the Young Fashion Entrepreneur presentation, that will all change this afternoon when I go to my next show!

With this as the bench mark, I can't wait!

Lots of love,
A very very excited Tor

PS - Big thanks again have to go to and to my wonderful boss Mark Russell who let me sneak out of work early to go to the show and is always so understanding and supportive of my fashion pursuits, even when they interfere with my work. Best boss ever!!

Friday, 20 February 2009

Oh my God!

This is just a teeny tiny very quick post to say thank you to the wonderful folks at Catwalk genius, courtesy of whom I have just been awarded tickets to several LFW shows (yeah baby!!!) I'm so excited I don't know what to do, I just feel like jumping up and down (and up and down and up and get the idea!)
See look how happy and excited I am! And how chubby my cheeks are when I smile....dammit!! Thank God I was already dressed up a little more than usual for work today, because i'm going to the launch of the Summer Rayne Oakes style naturally book tonight! All this excitement is too much to take!

Now I know its obvious to say that I look a little Luella here, but I was actually channelling SS09 House of Holland. What do you think?
Anyway I have to scoot if I want to get to that first show! After i've jumped up and down a bit more to get all the excitement out of course! I'm taking my camera and my notebook, so expect gossip and photos galore when I get back!
Lots of love,
Tor xxx
PS - I shall be tweeting often throughout the day and weekend, so if you want to follow me in "real time" and endure the randomness that often pops into my head then i'd love you to!!

Thursday, 19 February 2009

Is anybody else going.... the Independent Fashion Blogger party on Monday night?!

Fabfrocks has been an IFB member pretty much since the blog began, and we all know I don't need any excuse to dress up and party!

The event is guest list only but if you're quick you can still get on the guest list; it closes tomorrow! Visit the independent fashion bloggers website for more details.

It looks like it's going to be a really good night; let me know if you're going to be there, I love meeting other bloggers!

Lots of love,


Wednesday, 18 February 2009

Oh Betsey, Betsey, all I want is you.....

You can all yawn and turn away before I even start if you want to, but, for the oooh around a millionth time on this blog, I love Betsey Johnson! She's fun and crazy, she doesn't take fashion or herself too seriously, and yet again she's managed to create a collection I wish I was brave enough to wear every piece of.

When I read that there wasn't going to be a Betsey Johnson 'runway show' this season my heart sank and I filled with panic. Had the recession hit Ms J too? Would she like to come and live in my spare room, borrow my sewing machine, have me make her cupcakes? Marry her for visa purposes and then live in a run down cottage together for the rest of our lives? Luckily for her this was not the case. Don't worry, i'll get over it! I realised it was just another typical (if there can be such a thing) Betsey quirk; a small crowd invited to "Betsey Crockers Kitchen" in her showroom to showcase the new collection. According to Susie Bubble it was full of tasty treats! Oh how I wish I had been there!

Sadly I wasn't; i'm just not damn cool enough! But instead i've sated myself by looking at these pictures over and over again:-
Things on my wish list? The floral harem pants, the 80's style stripey leggings (a big post on the resurgence of all 80s trends this season will follow shortly)the dog t shirt, naturally, knitted pastel stripey shorts, and something made of monkey fur. Its looking like anyone who's anyone will be wearing oversized monkey fur next season; once is a quirk and twice is a trend my friends!

Oh and this has given me a great DIY idea; I stole the jacket from my boyfriends old suit and regularly sport it when slouchy around town at the weekends. All I have to do is cover the lapels in sequins, ala image 3, and I am bang on a Betsey trend! Something tells me a trip to the haberdashery is in order asap....

And if you need another reason to agree with my about my Betsey obsession (agree with me dammit, i'm sweating with the exertion of loving this woman so much!) I have one; Betsey was amongst the designers to dress "real life" barbie models this week at a show to celebrate the 50th anniversary of everyones favourite doll.
Oh Betsey! A lime green cupcake dress for a ditsy blonde?!
I''ll take it!!

Love Tor xx

STOP PRESS: Go buy a dress!!

This tiny little post is only really relevant to my London based readers, but its just too good not to tell!

Yesterday afternoon I had to bumble over to Canary Wharf (a place I rarely venture) for work. On the way back I decided to pop into the Jubilee Line shopping centre there and spend 20 minutes wandering in the shops. In one shop, a shop called Choice which mostly stocked Juicy Couture and D&G and other designers of that ilk, I saw and fell in love with the above two Laura Lees dresses from the Christmas 2008 collection. However, that these dresses look lovely (and the embroidery on them is of little guitars!) isn't what's stopping the presses. That would be the price.

These dresses, which according to the tags were previously selling for just over £200, have now been reduced to £49 each! That works out at like 80% off!! Wowzers!! So if you're anywhere near canary wharf and you need a little bit of recession busting retail therapy, then go and buy one of these dresses!

Having slept on it and thought about them constantly, i've decided to go for the red one....

Lots of love,
PS - I'm having a minor moment of vanity, but I think these dresses will hang loads better on my curves than on this very skinny (but very pretty!) model!
PPS - The Laura Lees website (love love her work!) has a very cool doodle box on the homepage where you can design your own embroidery logos! Definitely one to kill 5 minutes at work!

Tuesday, 17 February 2009

Whats that? A dress. Who says? Calvin Klein.

Well actually Preen does, but you really do feel a bit like Cher from Clueless' dad when you see all these panelled mini dresses, don't you?

Brace yourself everyone, because here it comes! My first show review from New York fashion week (well, it's better late then never!) I've decided to start with Preen because I always love them, and despite my major aversion to hounds tooth, particularly oversized houds tooth, I love them again this season too. Its flirty and naughty and most importantly furry. And I really do love fur!

However enough of my rambling. As they speak a thousand words, lets start with the pictures and six thousand 'words' that are coming your way:

Do you remember that series of Project Runway where the rotund fellow Chris uses monkey fur in his final catwalk show? That's the first thing I thought of when I saw this collection. Its like the monkeys from the planet of the apes breed with a lambretta sporting crew of Mods and then they all became millionaires. And there's nothing more exciting than a dress where one false move could reveal an unexpected nipple.

Despite the tearing and the sheer panels and the fur, the lines on all of the dresses are suprisingly clean. It makes what could be a vintage inspired collection seem fresh and modern. Monochrome always makes me think of the sixties; I remember wearing white boots that my mum hated with black trousers in 1996 when there was a major 60's revival and Mike Flowers Pop was covering Oasis' Wonderwall, and feeling like Twiggy. I think those sixties 'cool cats' I was inspired by in '96 would be impressed with this collection.
The candy coloured dresses came as a bit of a shock after the harsh monochrome of the majority of the collection, but it provides a welcome relief to the eyes which (if your eyes work like mine) are immediately drawn to the shiny candy pink trousers.
Who wears candy pink plastic trousers? Well, not me, but looking at them was a wonder to behold! However despite my love of the rainbow acid brights, it is this final dress that is my favourite of the whole collection and immediately makes it onto the "when i'm thin and rich and famous and have to go to movie premieres..." list:
Although I rarely wear them (the curse of my hips) I love full skirts and I always get irrationally excited when I see them swish down the catwalk. There's something about the way they move and the glamour of it. I especially love the layering of this one, which makes it look like it has wings. Wings! Team that with a sheer blouse which seems to have ribs circling its either side and nipple covering pockets (which of course barely cover the nipples at all) and you're onto a winner. Preen: My heart is won!

Love Tor x