V&A: The Glamour of Italian Fashion exhibition

I loved this exhibition at the V&A museum, and although no photos, notes or sketches were allowed to be taken during the exhbition, I thought carefully about what caught my attention afterwards:

I absolutely loved the jewellery on display worn by Elizabeth Taylor – diamond and emerald, necklace, ring and a brooch she wore as a hair accessory, they were given by two of her husband’s at different time in which one of her husband’s, Richard Burton once said: “The only word Elizabeth knows in Italian is ‘Bulgari,’”.

I paid particular attention to what was written on the behaviour of buyers during the 1950s – 60s era, looking at what caught the attention of buyers and where they travelled to and from internationally. I found this really interesting, especially the scale they were going to and from during this era and the power of italian fashion has on buyers at this time.

Roberto Cavalli, a renowned italian designer had some of his work displayed. He is acknowledged for his work with leather and I especially like the printed leather, in which a dark brown had white and green print work on its surface.

As the exhibition progressed, it brought the viewer’s to modern times – I loved the work of Fausto Puglisi, which had a blue palm tree print top combined with gold embellishment over the top. It stayed very true to the italian style but with the moden trends in mind.

A short video clip was shown at the very end in which different perspectives of the future of the italian industry were given by different employees in fashion. It mainly aimed to answer: what will ‘Made in Italy’ mean in the future? It spoke about economical, social issues in Italy today, as well as mentioning how the government don’t really support the work of the fashion industry, yet the amount of money it brings to the country doesn’t suffice this. It’s all take and no give.

About the exhbibition: http://www.vam.ac.uk/content/exhibitions/exhibition-the-glamour-of-italian-fashion-1945-2014/inside-the-exhibition/

interesting video from the Director of Bulgari: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DgeY1-d67U4

CSR: Marks & Spencer and Christopher Raeburn

I’m always interested to know about fashion company’s responsibilities in ethical, environmental, social issues and am always on the look out to see how they do it. Obviously a large corporate company which is renowned for their work into this area is M&S with their ‘Plan A’ scheme. Their previous Head of Sustainability at M&S, Mark Sumner now works in the School of Design at my university, so I am keen to ask him more about his time at M&S and how they worked.

I also was recently looking at menswear and womenswear designer Christopher Raeburn on their website, where I came across a video about sustainability. One of the ladies in the video mentioned that she believes the bigger the retailer, the bigger the responsibility they have towards sustainable fashion, so I think its great that Christopher Raeburn, who is on a smaller, more exclusive scale is incorporating this in his collections. Having worked with Christopher Raeburn it was so interesting to see the choice of fabrics and remade fabrics (especially for example, their decommissioned parachutes being used as the basis of a bomber jacket), and loved seeing how they thought about their fabric choices for the development of their products.

Here’s a link to an interview with Mark Sumner and a link to the video on Christopher Raeburn’s website: http://urbantimes.co/2012/06/mark-sumner-of-ms-there-is-no-plan-b-when-it-comes-to-sustainability/

http://www.christopherraeburn.co.uk/about

LC:M, The Hospital Club

Had a fun afternoon roaming around the display stands on Monday and came across one collection which I particularly liked by Palmer Harding. The collection entailed really innovative fabric choices, including a stiff foil-like material and a delicate, dotted ‘smudged’ print. I will definitely be keeping an eye on their future collections. An unusual garment was their almost ‘inside out’ jumper with the hems being visible on the outside and the collection’s print on one sleeve – loved it!

The collection can be seen at http://www.palmerharding.com/ss15-men’s-collection

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Coast Press Day

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I loved the display for Coast’s press day for their Autumn/Winter 2014 collection, the beautiful presentation stayed true to the brand’s ethos and image. I personally liked the setting surrounded by flowers and old-fashion motorcycles. As always, the display was glamorous, feminine and ideal for their target market. I feel after their season show, this press day has given the collection a strong introduction for the season and I look forward to seeing it in store, especially the monochrome!

Photos from Coast’s instagram account.

Karen Millen’s Tropical collection

This season, tropical floral prints have dominated the market, with most retailers incorporating some kind of tropical plant into their prints. I believe the best example of this is by Karen Millen. Many of their products have used digitally printed designs which are mirrored. The vibrant colours are truly a step ahead of competitors and there is still a high level of glamour as expected from KM. Unlike some similar products on the market, KM’s jungle collection has strong impact from its highly intricate printed design and the intensity of the colours, which has been achieved with sophistication and strong distinction to competitors. 

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The images are from: http://www.karenmillen.com/urban_botanics/content/fcp-content which shows the collection!