Roxy Henley fashion stylist front row at graduate fashion week

One Week, Two ‘Fashion Weeks’

First Fashion Week of The Week; Graduate

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Graduate Fashion Week is a really special time of the year. Hundreds of really creative, technically gifted graduating fashion design students have the opportunity to either show off their final collections at a number of fashion shows curated by their university, or to display their portfolios and talk directly to established members of the fashion community and potential employers. In the last few years GFW has grown exceptionally from a small event into a hub of artistic expertise.

Remember This Stunner?

I styled 2017’s highlight graduate collection by Rochester Uni’s Claire Tagg in editorials and on celebrity clients, while she designed a capsule collection for Marks & Spencer’s, before she showed an extended collection at Fashion Scout during February’s London Fashion Week to critical acclaim. Now she is planning her next show and I can’t wait to see what she creates!
A 2016 Rochester graduate, Billie Jacobina is also a big upcoming name in the fashion inner circle. Two massive hit designers in a row made the Rochester show this year the hottest ticket in my book!
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Rochester’s 2018 grads didn’t disappoint as Gabriela Ratomskaja’s beautifully detailed men’s collection opened the show with the models transforming their outerwear into a one person tent live on the runway (those sounds are the front row gasping and laughing in awe).

Creative Objection

A millennial dose of protest came from Georgia Dicks’ creative statement on the wastefulness of luxury. A gorgeous tailored suit on closer inspection is printed with fag butts and a black gown strutting does the runway is laden down with plastic bottles a-la, a fashion bin bag.
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Impressive Alumni

Following in the perfectly heeled steps of Ravensbourne former student Clare Waight Keller who, as Creative Director of Givenchy, designed Meghan’s wedding dress last month, Isabella Peace’s shades of pink and nude contrasted delicate flowing and ruffled tulle with tough leather in a gorgeous collection.

 

Out of the Ordinary

My hometown, Brighton made me proud as it’s graduates utilised unusual fabrics and techniques such as this beautiful oyster shell coat by Madeline Paine…
…and the dramatic Macrame knotted crinolines by Anna Chandler.

An Impressive Affair

With inspiration behind collections ranging from the industrial to electrical to emotional, the imagination behind the designs provides much to appreciate. Growing in size (and reputation) each year The Old Truman Brewery on Brick Lane is a fabulous venue to house workshops, employer seminars, student meet and greets, a media hub and of course the large catwalk space fully furnished to a professional standard. It is so professional that the only way to know you’re not at mainstream London Fashion Week is the 6 looks made by each designer rather than a whole collection. After attending my second fashion ‘week’ of last week (London Fashion Week: Men’s) I’d say the teams at Fashion Scout and Task PR are giving the British Fashion Council a run for their money.

Top looks

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Ellie Saunders Watson, Rachel E Comrie, Bethany Hilton, Aaminah Kara, Pui Si Tang, Tihara Smith, Ekaterina Webb, Anna Fuller, Jacaranda Brain, Elizabeth Midwinter, Miko Komiya and Jessica Purdie

Second Fashion Week of The Week; Men’s

Downsizing from last season from four days to three, men’s fashion week appeared distressed in it’s presentation having lost some of their big names including Burberry and JW Anderson to duel gender shows during the women’s presentation calendar. Some receptions in the #DescoveryLab had originality such as 3. PARADIS who bound their models to a central block of concrete…
…and JORDANLUCA who modelled the space on a post apocalyptic world of antenna and root vegetables whilst models stood protected from whatever radioactive waste killed off the rest of us.

Trend FYI

I really noticed a menswear trend for ‘grown up’ Hawaiian shirts and there are loads available on the high street at the moment…just don’t go too bold with the colours to keep it chic and on trend this summer.

Obsessed with silk!

My favourite collection was by catwalk newbie Daniel W Fletcher whose leather coats and printed shirts are flamboyant yet wearable.

Bravo!!!

I caught up with Daniel at his after party in association with Christian Louboutin at Fitzrovia’s Mortimer House for a celebratory glass of vino. The dynamic designer borrowed a shirt and denim jacket from his new collection for the affair, perfect advertising!
Daniel D Fletcher and Megold

Blooming Marvellous

Oliver Spencer’s presentation was charming. A moving floral projection was a serene escape from the fashion rat race and the clothes were wearable and stylish. It was a little too dark to properly appreciate the new collection, and insider gossip….Spencer suffered one show casualty as one editor tripped finding her seat in the bellowing dry ice!
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Two fashion weeks in one week is a hell of a lot of creativity for any brain to digest! Congratulations to all graduates and men’s designers, see you next season.
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Please do me a little favour and share this blog post with others because all the creativity I saw this week deserves all the love it can get!

Love Roxy XxX

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