Friday, 20 September 2013

An Evening of Fashion at Playboy Club London

On the last night of London Fashion Week, I attended An Evening of Fashion hosted by Alexandra Shulman at Playboy Club London. We were greeted by complimentary cocktails as we entered the lounge and waited for the talk with Alexandra to begin.

The topic of London Fashion Week was unsurprisingly covered during Miss Shulman's talk, as she discussed the evolution and changes of London Fashion Week since she joined British Vogue in 1992. It was mentioned that previously London Fashion Week had been seen as one of the most unpopular fashion weeks, so obviously Vogue are very pleased with the progress that London Fashion Week has made; now being one of the most popular in both the press and with designers. Despite London Fashion Week having a more positive individual stand among the fashion weeks, Alexandra also discussed designs that were popular in New York Fashion Week that appeared in London; the big ones for next season being monochrome, floral print and girl in boy's. I will be most looking forward to girl in boy styles next season; tailored blazers and cigarette trousers will be my favourites - very Victoria Beckham. However, Miss Shulman did also point out that this fashion week is finally starting to move away from 90's style influence, no more bulbous shoulder pads and a lot less bodycon, so it was refreshing to say hello to a completely new look this fashion week.

Moving away from London Fashion Week, Miss Shulman's talk turned towards the world of the fashion industry. At the event there were a number of young and/or aspiring designers present, and Alexandra Shulman gave her opinion of the success of designers lying on a strong relationship between financiers and designers. Of course the foundation of a label is the designers themselves, but Miss Shulman highlighted the importance of the role of the financier in aiding designers getting their feet off the ground. Alexandra voiced that although she meets a lot of fantastic designers that have just graduated from fashion college, they are not equipped with the business mindset that is needed when trying to break into the industry. On the topic of new designers, Miss Shulman praised the success of Thomas Tate during this year's London Fashion Week and expressed that she hopes to see a lot more of him in future shows.

Further on in the evening, during the question and answer segment, Miss Shulman's talk spurred a question; "Is the high-street mimicking designer labels damaging the industry?". In response, Miss Shulman began by pointing out that by high-street stores mimicking designs by big labels, it gives everybody the opportunity to look fashionable, which is never a bad thing for those who can't necessarily afford to splash thousands of pounds on a new dress or handbag (although I know we all wish we could!). On the flip side, if high-street stores do copy designs by new designers - such as Thomas Tate - it can make it difficult for them to make the individual stand in the fashion industry that they need when starting out, so it is something which needs to find a balance in order to please everyone within the fashion world, which admittedly is not as easy as it sounds!

The talk with Miss Shulman was an amazing insight into her opinions of the fashion industry and was held in a perfectly sophisticated yet intimate venue which allowed us all to feel the buzz of anticipation and excitement before Alexandra arrived, which remained long after she had left the building.

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