Chanel Press Day 10th November. The Chanel Academy Old Bond Street London.











































































































































































































































































































































































Van Cleef & Arpels win coverted award in Switzerland. 


Congratulations to Van Cleef & Arpels!!


In addition to creating celebrated Jewellery

collections such as the famous Alhambra and

Perlee plus Haute Joaillerie they also lead the field in

producing wrist watches for him and for



Their Maison's excellence has won the prestigious

Ladies Watch Prize of the 10th Grand Prix d’Horlogerie 

de Genève on the 18th November 2010.


This piece is called 'Poetic Complications' set on the

Pont de Amoureux. A romantic place in out imagination

where lovers can meet. I imagine it to be a bridge in

Paris or one of the bridges in Florence.

             (C) Image courtesy of Van Cleef & Arpels.





Worth Spring Summer Haute Couture and Ready to Wear at the Bentley Show room at Berkeley Square -  A Berkeley Square Dress Show!


















































































































































































































Ralph Lauren London Store Launch
























































































































Charbonnel et Walker & Ramos Pinto Party





















































































Aminaka Wilmont Press Day






















































































































































































































A Blush of Rose


November 2010



Beauty, Grace & Style


I was delighted to visit the Chanel Academy at New Bond Street and see close-up the collection for Spring - Summer 2011 that had shown in Paris a few weeks earlier. I was in love with the collection and everything here, from the brightly coloured sports clothing, to the Croquet set that was yours for £40,000. It may come in handy on quiet afternoons and came in a nice Chanel trunk. I thought the Chanel Tennis kit looked pretty fun and that would be my pick from the sports things.



Back to the main fashion statements, the palette for Spring - Summer 2011 is pretty diverse as you will see from my report from Paris on the October Page. The pictures above show two of my favourite pieces. The first to the left is a grey knitted detail dress that I have seen being worn by one of hte ladies from Chanel and I think it looks fantastic, also considering the direction that our weather is taking we will all need more knitted things in our wardrobe in the future all year round I think. The second look to the right is a light cotton top with neck tie and a Cream coloured Cardigan with deep useful pockets. As Gabrielle Chanel loved pockets and expected all fashion to be practical I really thought that this was very much in the Lady's image.


Here below are some more looks from the collection that where displayed that day.  

I love the looks that these models are wearing looks that can be social occassion wear or worn to your office. I love the completeness of the Chanel look from the shoes to the bags, the jewellery and the make-up it all creates a perfect picture. In the three looks to the left my favourite is the long black dress with matching cuff bracelette and Khaki-Beige shoes and bag.


The models also wore a dash of the Powder-Blue Riva coloured lip stick that matched the Cruise Collection. The manequin below is wearing a beautiful combination of Pink chemise and Grey knitted skirt and cardigan. The key to the chic look lies in the use of usually two colours in the clothes and then a further colour is blended in with accessories.    



There was a beautiful collection of bags on display for this season. Lots in Grey with a wide variety of stylisation and the Jade-Green material bags of a couple of years ago have returned in new varieties. My absolute favourite that is at the top of my Wish List right now is the above limited edition 2.55 bag with Lady Bird detail. It's available form the 26th January at Chanel stores world wide and I will be wishing on a Star this Christmas that one of them will be mine.



The bracelets above where worn in Paris and have a retro re-discovered Antique/Bijoux look about them. My favourite two are the ones at the front of the above picture. To the left the chain mail gold bracelet with stones set in it harks back to the Renaissance or maybe Byzantine era and next to it sits a simple pair of understated bracelets that are worn together.


Next, sitting on a window ledge next to the famous Chanel Camelias are some of the shoes from the last collection. Wedges are here to stay and I instantly recognised the third pair from the left, the beige lattice worked open-toe boots from Paris and also the Black and Grey wedged sandals.

Chanel's Spring Summer 2011 Makeup line has a selection of irresistible goodies on offer. The collection is beautiful. My favourite of the lipsticks is the Jersey Rose from the Rouge Coco line without a doubt. That will be entering my make-up bag very shortly.


Chanel nail polishes are my favourites and I love the dusky dramatic Black Pearl, theres a Keira Knightly/Pirates of the Caribbian link here too I think. The other two colours are Peche Necree and Pearl Drop which are pretty by themsleves or can be used for alternative 'Peche' manicure.

The eye liner for this collection os a dark Silver-Grey that shimmers very well and corresponds well with the Black Pearl Nail Polish.


I love palettes and this collection did not dissapoint.The Regard Perlee Ombres-Quad has the same Smoky-Peachy effect as the rest of the collction and as always with the Chanel the colours can be used wet or dry. I think wet is better for a more dramatic/evening effect. The Perlee Ombres quint palette will also make a lovely addition to you makeup bag and I love the way palettes can give you a quick choice of options when you need to do make-up and are away from home.

I had great fun looking at and trying out the make-up in this collection and I think it will be very popular.



I was also introduced to the Cruise collection Riva Nail Polish which I mentioned above and here is an image that Chanel kindly sent across to me. I was lucky enough to find this in the Sloane Street Chanel Store when it had sold out just about everywhere else in the UK.

I would like to thank Chanel who were as always very gracious hosts and inparticular several of the ladies who talked me through various aspects of the coming collection. I can't wait to see what's next.



One of the most exciting designers currently working in London is Erdem. I was lucky enough to meet him earlier this Autumn at Fashion Night Out at Harvey Nics in-store Haberdashery and talked a little about his work and the upcoming collection. Naturally he didn't give any secrets away but was very excited about the coming show.


Here below is my pick of the collection that he brought out for Spring - Summer 2011.





























The first two looks above to the left are my favourites of several White Lace looks he brought out. I think there's something very feminine and sexy about Lace that makes it wearable anytime and anywhere. These pieces are light and fit delicatly over the figure nad will keep you looking all coolness and innocence in the Summer months. The third and fourth looks above pick up one of my favourite traditional design methods, patchworking. Patchwork is very much in Vogue now as many designers look to the antique hand-me down mode and also there is a ressonance with the current times of 'make-do and mend'. It's a traditional craft that deserves it's place in High Fashion.



























As the collection moved into evening the first dress that caught my eye was of-course the Scarlet lace Dress. I love Red and I love lace so this was an instant hit with me. The next look again used lace but in quite a different way. This time there was some colour andI really thought this would be a fun outfit for a Summer day-time party.


The third look above, the floor length sheer Black Lace dress that trails slightly as you walk is heaven. I love the White collar detail and the centre fastening buttons of the upper part of the outfit. It gives the piece a look of careful structure in the top half of the garment and then the structure simplifies to flow and drape over the lower half of the figure. It's a beautiful outfit for public and private occassions depending how bold you are. The final piece was the beautiful gown that closed the collection. This billowing floaty number had an amazing cut that folded the dress around the body of the model and let the air pick up the train in just the right way to give it an elegant flowing effect.


The show was set in a beautiful garden, the perfect place to herald Spring and Summer 2011. There was an atmosphere of an afternoon Garden Party where all the guests where treated to a Fashion Show also.









I was delighted to visit Worth at the Bentley Show Room in Berkeley Square to see the Spring - Summer 2011 line on live models posing amongst the beautiful cars. Above tot he left are two of the pieces from the collection set against the backdrop of the Je Reviens, the perfume due for re-launch in Spring 2011 and until then sold exclusivly at Harrods and featured in the Perfume Diaries.


To the right two of the models are pictures wearing two of my favourite pieces from the collection.

They are light, fun and vintage-esque. You can wear them in the afternoon or evening although the piece below fits more neatly into the category of afternoon wear. It's delightful, the embroidery is stunning. As with all Ready to Wear from Worth it's made with the same standards of Haute Couture, the only difference is that these clothes are not made to measure and come in the standard House sizes so they are classed as Pret a Porter. 

The above centre picture is of a beautiful black lace dress the lovely Sara kindly held this up for me to look at in detail and the finnishing and detail where superb. Either side one of models  is wearing two Spring and Summer pieces. I love the piece on the left, it has an antique feel of the 1930s. The dress is fastened at the front by hook detail that feels very contemporary with the era of it's inspiration.


The second dress to the right continues the Worth moteif of Lingerie and lingerie inspired pieces being worn as outer wear in the day or in the evening. This dress is light weight and fits to the form of the body. Well structured, it appears to float around the lady as she wears it. I think it is a romantic, fun piece that would turn heads at a Garden Party or to be enjoyed in private. I love the front lace detail, that has a coy sexiness about it.

(C) All images Angela Cliffe.

(C) All images Angela Cliffe with kind permission of Chanel.

(C) All images Erdem. With kind permission.

The White dress above has a ruched Fishtail design that flares delicatly at the base complimeting the curve of a woman's figure. This piecs is made of many layers of fabric but again like all the Worth pieces it is made from stretched lace and is very light to wear. This is a beautiful glamour piece for the evening nad for the day. To the left is a beautiful skirt in the signature light blue that is used in much of the collection. The skirt is over layered with White Lace embroidary detail and sits lightly on the hips. Beside it you can see the matching light blue chemise that can be worn to acompany it. 


The dress to the right is another beautiful dress where under wear can be worn as outer wear. This piece for me is channeling Swan Lake and with the upcoming film Black Swan out in the US nad soon to be released in the New Year in the UK it's bang on-trend. 


Again, as with the other layered peices above this is also deceptivly light in it's structure and floats around the lady as she wears it. You will be a Swan wearing this. I think it would work well as a stand alone piece or matched with a black jacket and black clutch.






This dress that has a little Angel over it's shoulder is a really fun piece. The tassels take you back to the 1920s and the  strectched lace gives gently over the figure to accentuate the woman's curves. The sheer effect of the material covering the arms and decollette area gives the outfit a fun all in one feel. 


This is a piece you could go clubbing in or wear to a Black Tie drinks reception. And what do we love?? Versatile Style.   

I close my visit to Worth with this final piece that is extraordinary in it's detail and finishing.


I think this is looking right back to the historical period of the Sixteenth and Seventeenth century in Europe. To Court Dress and a combination of tailoring for men's jackets blended together with the feminine touches of Women's corsetry. 


This is certainly a piece to treasure in your collection.


It was lovely to see Worth again in London and what a fantastic venue for a Party, surrounded by Bentley's and so many people dropping by to see Sara and her team and watch the lovely models glide between the cars.  I'm looking forward to their show in Paris in January already.   

Ralph Lauren's long awaited new London store launched with one of the most original and spectatular show I have yet seen at any store opening. After a wonderful Champagne and Canapay party inside the store guests where ushered outside into the cool evening to await a surprise. 


A light show was projected onto the front of the store that showed the Maison on the style of a Parisian town house. After a greeting from Mr Ralph Lauren himself the light show commenced with a catwalk show, set to music, of the Autumn - Winter 2011 collection which you can see above to the left.


























One of the things that Ralph Lauren is best known for is their Association with the Sport of Kings - Polo. Outside the store we where treated to a display of scenes from Polo matches and there where lots of shots of beautiful Horses running across the front of the building as an imaginary Polo game wa sin full flow. Naturally the Riders are wearing the signature Polo clothes by Ralph Lauren. I had a lot of images of the Polo but this picture above is the one that shows the Horses in the clearest focus.


Ralph Lauren is also known for it's Watches and the picture to the right above is, I think, a ladies Watch in a simple traditional design.


























The Polo theme is picked up again on several of the above Ties. You can just about see in the above image how the ties folded over the building as they came into view. It was a really great effect and the building was wrapped in some of it's most famous products. The final picture, above to the left, was the montage that closed the show with hundreds of images of Shoots, catwalk shows and advertisments dropped down across the building in fast-flow to create a complete picture of what Ralph Lauren will be bringing to London.


Also Mr. Lauren himself welcomed everyone to the opening in the presentation which was very popular with the audience. 






On a chilly night Charbonnel et Walker welcomed a gathering of friends to their store at One Royal Arcade for an evening of Chocolate and Port tasting and matching. Ramos Pinto are one of the oldest Port producing companies in the world and as my Portuguese friend Francisca told me, Port comes from the city of Porto in Portugal and it also has strong links with British History. What more fitting match than with Charbonnel Chocolate?


I must confess that I didn't know too much about Port before this evening but after this evening I decided Tawny Ports where the ones for me. Tawny Ports are aged in the Barrel and look clearer. Ruby Ports are aged in the bottle and look a little like full bodied Red Wine.


A wonderful lady from Ramos Pinto explained how they make the perfect port. They crush the grapes in a swimming pool and make sure that there are no seeds in them.



























We began with a Ruby Port and Cranberry Truffles. This evening of experimentation began on a delicious note and this was my favourite combination of the evening. Next came the 10 year old Tawny Port with Dark Chocolate Orange Peel and Milk Chocolate Truffles. Absolutley delicious. The Dark chocolate orange peel and the Tawny Port where a very good combination.




(C) All images Angela Cliffe.

There was lots of mingling and munching through the evening and the celebrated Chocolates where flying off the shelves just as quickly as bottles of Port where being snapped up by guests.


Two pairing with the 20 year old Tawny Port where the Dark Chocolate Brazil and the Caramel Truffle. For me the 20 year old Tawny was very heady and I took very small sips before I bit into the delicious chocolate and let it melt onto my tongue.


I had a wonderful evening at Charbonnel and enjoyed my introduction to Ramos Pinto. My pick would be the 10 year old Tawny Port as my absolute favourite and I would be happy to match it with any of Charbonnel's chocolates. 













I was really happy to be invited along to the Aminaka Wilmont Press day by Mercedes and had a very thorough look at the collection. It was spectacular and so many of the pieces where versatile and very imaginative. There where a number of pirinted dresses and skirt and shirt tops that would equally good at an evening party or worn around the Italian Coast or Greek Islands in Summer time.


They also make some pretty interesting accessories. For a closer look at what captivated me, please look back at the September page and see my pictures from the show, luckily I was in the front row so had a very clear shot.


Vibrant, yes, creative, yes, daring yes definatly and the right place to look if you want some bold pieces to add to your wardrobe to make a definate style statement.



Uniqlo and Pringle Press Day



The joint press day for Uniqlo and Pringle was a real treat. The Spring-Summer 2011 collections where shown partly on manequins in an open plan studio. Uniqlo and Pringle where both featuring lots of casula wear that looked like all the great weekend and casual staples that you would wish for in your wardrobe. 


There was lots of Kharki and lots of Denim. Shorts, mid calf pedal trousers and lots of collared tailored T-shirts, with and without naval stripes.



Mary Katrantzou


Mary has been honoured with the Swiss Textiles Award in Zurich. She has won the coverted Crown that Alexander Wang won last year. The title comes with 100,000 Euros prize money which is a very welcome reward for the hard work the designers, and their teams, have put in en route to this spot. This prize gives designers a direct channel to the expertise of the Swiss textile industry. Many such as Alexander Wang make the most of it. Wang has apparently created a whole new line of textiles that he has produced in collaboration with some of the contacts that he has made in the last year.


Mary herself is fast becomming famous for her unique prints inspired by historical high society scenes. Her talent and raw creativity is a perfect match for the expertise of the manufacturers that she will be meeting in the next year and I'm even more keen to see her future collections come out.


This is very well deserved and it's great to see Mary getting more recognition on the international stage.




The Costume Institute at the Met in New York Celebrates two decades of Alexander McQueen.


The Met have announced a major show coming next year in 2011. From 4th May until 31st July they will host an exhibition called 'Alexander McQueen : Savage Beauty' . I hope to be in New York around May or June time so I should be able to see it. I think it's time to take a clear look at this designers work and talk less about how he died and more about what he did and what he gave.



As befits a show at one of the World's leading museums they will have pieces from both the Alexander McQueen and Givenchy archieves sitting alongside pieces that have come from private collections. Daphne Guinness will be loaning her own pieces bought directly from McQueen and also some from the Estate of Isabella Blow that she has bought en bloc and preserved for posterity. This is expected to include pieces from 'Lee' McQueen's graduation show.


The Costume Institute benefit Gala on 2nd May will launch this new exhibition that will be grouped into themes. Andrew Bolton, a Curator at the Costume Institute at the Met said that the collection  will illustracte the designers broad scope from the extraordinary display of his runway collections to the beauty and detail of his craftsmanship. This is both fashion and art together.


I would recommend that anyone who is able to be in New York in early Summer do so as it will be a wonderfull collection.



Karl Lagerfeld on the style of Coco Chanel.



Karl Lagerfeld has spoken of how he has interpreted the legacy of Coco Chanel. I'm putting this quote in that I read because it sums it up brilliantly.


He said "I play with Chanel's elements like a musician plays with notes. You don't have to make the same music if you are a decent musician."


I agree completly. If the lead designer at Chanel was forever churning out reproductions of Mademoiselle's classic looks we may just all be getting a little bored by now and hoping to see something different. She herself knew how to move on even if some modern pieces such as Jeans didn't sit well with her.



Alice Temperley and Barbour.


Alice Temperley has unveiled a capsule collection of clothes designed for the House of Barbour. Beloved of the Country Sports fraternity and many who rarley venture out of town this collection is a neat cross over for the town and country crowd who are already loyal followers of Alice. The collaboration follows the earlier Duet of Barbour with Anya Hindmarch and will launch in time for the Autumn 2011 collection.


Alice is really excited about it and so are Barbour. I'm excited becasue I can't wait to see what jackets she comes up with and, my big favourite, the bag. I have a secret love of country bags, the type that you see people taking on shoots and using around town. Usually in Beige, Brown or Dark Green to blend in with woodland surroundings.




Anya Hindmarch and Tamara Mellon become Trade Ambassadors.


In another piece of fashion news there is another story that relates to one of my Pet theories that Fashion can and does play a very important role in international trade and, more subtly, in fashion as cultural diplomacy.


The government has appointed Anya Hindmarch and Tamara Mellon as Trade Ambassadors to the United Kingdom. It's fantastic. They're both women, they're both 'Names' that ring aorund the world as Hallmarks' of British Fashion and they're both working mothers who've pushed hard to be successful.


Anya Hindmach has also joined the British Fashion Council. She said " I'm looking forward to getting involved and being able to contribute to such an innovative and prestigious body at such an exciting tie for British Fashion" Harold Tillman said that "Anya will make a great addition to our team" and he is very excited to have her on board.





(C) Angela Cliffe 2009 - 2013.