Sunday, 2 August 2015

ONNA BUGEISHA COLLECTION

Michelle Ludek set the trail ablaze with her fabulous and vibrant collection a at Mercedes Benz Fashion Week Cape Town this weekend, held at the Watershed, V & A Waterfront.  She is a revered designer who has established herself as a master of drape. Her collection displayed a slight departure from her usual style, from Leopard print in Fuchsia, to Navy Blue and Tomato Red gently flowing into each other, with elongated shapes and coats, dresses and pants, and a few more options to complete the look. Her collection would be all you need to set sail for a nautical adventure, and the beauty of it is that she remains true to herself by continuing to present a wearable range of desirable garments.  The generous cut of the wide leg pants in this collection gives it a beautifully free flowing and feminine feel, with well structured fabric adding to the silhouette. 

The aptly named Onna Bugeisha Collection, takes it's inspiration from her Japanese state of mind, she says. She has always held the Japanese culture  which holds so much meaning to clothing, and the meaning it holds to get dressed, in awe. Her collection  was complimented by the minimalistic but dramatic style of her sister's admirable creations, Belinda Ludek Jewellery, making a firm statement and giving the look an edge. What intrigued me most, were the kimono style sleeves, rendering it somewhat nostalgic and romantic. Bring on summer!












Monday, 27 July 2015

DESIGNER PROFILE, DANIELLE MARGAUX

It is in the shadow of the old Oak trees in the heart of the historical village of Stellenbosch where I find  myself in conversation with the talented Danielle Margaux, a South African Fashion Designer of note. She strikes me as  a remarkably promising and versatile designer, especially having regard to the fact that she served many of our other local designers who have  achieved significant fame and success. With a brief stint (just over 4 years) at designers like Kluk CGDT, Errol Arendz and Rosenwerth, she no doubt gained extensive exposure in various styles and pattern making, and with a particular interest in pattern design and making, she mastered the art of creating form flowing designs that indeed fit your body like a glove, cut and designed to your body type and measurements. She aspires to create garments that fit perfectly, and will soon release an online range with this object in mind. Her designs are distinctly different from any other designer and when asked about her particular style, I was told that it was both timeless, classic and with the client's personality in mind. 

Her crisp, classic  White shirts are an absolute essential ingredient for the capsule wardrobe, and having seen her previous two collections at Fashion Week, I understand why a White shirt from her label would become the quintessential capsule item. It is the harem pants worn with her classic big bow White shirt that caught my initial attention, the very White shirt which left me smitten with her timeless style and led me straight to Montegrey House at 6 Bird Street, Stellenbosch where she consults her clients to form an idea about your personality before she embarks on her talented mission of designing the perfect fit. Her policy on sustainable fashion resonates very well with clients, as she strives to maintain good staff relationships, having happy and well cared for employees whose welfare always remains on the forefront, thus contributing towards empowering  women and creating local employment.  

Although she initially pursued  studies in the medical field, she chose another direction and only embarked into a career sporting her own label after having done numerous other related jobs, including styling models on fashion shoots. She has a fondness for natural fabrics, in particular the tactile feel of Silks, which she no doubt has a great flair for. It is with glee that I  slip into my gorgeous Red Silk gown that was skilfully designed and fitted to my measurements, draping to the floor and gently gliding over my voluptuous figure with great elegance.

Being a designer with a penchant for classic style, she hardly ever works in printed fabric, in keeping with the concept of timeless style. She mentioned that she often indulged in the pages of glossy European fashion magazines as a child, only to discover that the gorgeous frocks were in real existence when she found herself working at Selfridges in London, where she spent lunch hours glancing through high end designs like a bookworm would scale a library.

It is the Protea flower that inspired the colour scheme of her next collection which will be shown during Cape Town Fashion Week next week, which she subtly revealed will show a little more vibrancy (using line as detail and black as a contrast).She's an ambitious women, and having already established herself in the industry as a designer of note, she will no doubt succeed in achieving her next goal by launching an online range in the next year, and if all goes well, turning the label into a brand of distinction…..

She exudes enthusiasm and waxes lyrical about fine fabric,  and with her exceptional talent to produce a garment which fits perfectly, no doubt the next collection will take the runway by storm during Fashion Week in Cape Town next week.

Her showstopper is appropriately named That's It, and the collection can be seen at 16h00 on Saturday the 1st August 2015 at the Watershed, V & A Waterfront, Cape Town. Rush to web tickets if you want to get a glimpse of what this phenomenal designer has created for the next Spring Summer season. 


 




 

Monday, 20 July 2015

CAPE TO CAIRO

If you haven't updated your winter look with the quintessential Cape yet, you'd better get out there and get it now as it is one of the most useful items you can have, whether it is the draped blanket wrap or formally structured Cape, you have to get it!

The Cape cloak returned to the fashion scene with new dimensions, it's no longer the formal military style leaving you very little room for movement through openings where the arms are. It now takes the form of a generous wrap  in large proportions to cover up just about every bit of flesh on the upper body. It comes in luxurious fabric sporting a rich texture. Capes are generally bulky so it's best to narrow down the bottom to create a sleek silhouette. Wear it with tapered down pants or straight and narrow legs, or with a pencil skirt. This wrap skirt has a beautiful asymmetrical cut which gives the body a very slimming effect. The turtle neck is one of my staple favourites and never dates, it only disappears for a while but somehow always re-surfaces. This outfit can be well balanced with calf length or knee high boots, and if your skirt is any shorter, you could even wear the slim version of over the knee boots which gives it a great edge. The felt hat finishes the outfit off, and if you want the full regalia, wear gloves with it! A good place to shop for felt hats would be Kloof Street in Cape Town where I recently stumbled onto a few stores having them in stock!

CAPE TO CAIRO

Friday, 10 July 2015

WATCH THIS SPACE


African Fashion International (AFI) ventured into a new and exciting space to host Cape Town's prestigious Fashion Week coming up on the 30th July to the 1st August 2015 at none other than the Watershed and North Wharf, a beautifully restored and revamped venue at the Victoria and Alfred Waterfront.  This global event promises to impress guests with no less than 30 designers, and home grown that is!  The organization carefully curates and promotes African-designed products that are on par with the rest of the world, keeping us in high esteem in the fashion industry!

Mercedes-Benz continues to be the title sponsor  and will no doubt continue to contribute greatly towards the timeless elegance and glamour of the show. AFI states that it remains committed to growing a new legion of designers through the AFI Fastrack and Next Generation programmes, uplifting the industry and promoting education through it's dedicated project.
This year's event will take place at the most beautiful setting with Table Mountain, the mother of mountains and an international icon, as a backdrop, giving it a unique view and atmosphere, not far from the glitz and glamour of the popular   V & A stores and restaurants where fashion cognoscenti may be convening in between shows and peacocking in their fashionable attire.
"We chose to move Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Cape Town to the V&A Waterfront to give this landmark event a revitalised perspective against a magnificent setting, placing this premier event at the heart of one of Cape Town’s most iconic destinations,” says Sizwe Nzimande, group marketing manager of African Fashion International (AFI), organisers of the event.
 “As the Watershed is home to some of South Africa’s most inspiring design and located in the heart of the V&A Waterfront, we are confident that the new home of Cape Town fashion is going to be a firm favourite among designers, models, sponsors, fashionistas and media alike.”
 
Indulge in a few photographs from last year's show, just in case you need encouragement to rush to Webtickets to book your seats!
 
 
 


 
 
 
 

MASCARPONE

Heavy weights, that's what I'm into this winter. Oversized, quilted, padded and generous fabric. This once is as thick as cream, like Mascarpone. That's what winter is all about. Layering is always a soft option to ad some style and needs no introduction to the trend scene.  Australian stylist and blogger, Margaret Zhang, has taken the trend to new heights, wearing layers like it's never been done before. Our mild winter weather hardly requires anything more than a light weight top with a coat, leaving one with little opportunity for layering. 
 
I have a secret love affair with printed or patterned stockings, hence my repeat on these Argyle ones. They provide an instant edge to an outfit and has become my "go to" escape when my imagination lets me down. How do you wear oversized coats? To bad the Northern hemisphere has already had the pleasure of this trend, because it tends to grow on one. The advantage is that the Southern hemisphere get's it fine tuned by all the fashionistas whose been seen sporting it around the world at Fashion  Weeks. Thank goodness, now we can perfect it having had a preview from those stylish mortals in the other half of the world.  









Coat - H & M
Skirt - Country Road
Boots - Salvatore Ferragamo
Turtle neck - Monton
Tights - Argyle V&D Amsterdam

Saturday, 4 July 2015

CHARTREUSE PLEASE

The more I see you, the more I want you.... thats how I feel about my Chartreuse coat that had to travel right across Eastern Europe  onwards to the Netherlands before it found it's way across Africa into my wardrobe. I have literally navigated the world to find a coat in this dynamic colour. Neither Yellow nor Green. 

Trust the French who aptly named it Chartreuse. It's oversized, bold in colour and with generous flare sleeves, and without calling it a copy, I 'd say inspired by Celine... My heart rate suddenly increased when I first laid eyes on it, knowing instantly that this was it. The more extravagant version by Celine was no longer to be found so I settled for this one, no regrets. The palpitations only subsided when I left the store with it safely tucked under my arm. Can a piece of clothing really cause so much excitement? 

Oversized coats requires the bottom to be tapered down, and should be worn with slim pants to avoid looking like the bag lady I described before. It looks gorgeous layered with another slim fit jacket underneath and a pencil skirt or straight leg pants and high heels. If you're on the short side, it could easily weigh you down, so one has to be mindful of  not adding to much bulk on the bottom. Now go on, go get your spot of colour to perk up your winter wardrobe. I dare you.








Coat - H & M
Skirt - Country Road
Turtle Neck - Monton
Boots - Salvatore Ferragamo
Barrel bag - River Island
Fur Hat- Prague Christmas Market
Tights - V&D Amsterdam
Long Scarve - Woolworths
Sunglasses - Miu Miu

Friday, 26 June 2015

CORSET TOP OVER SHIRT TREND

CORSET TOP OVER SHIRT TREND



Challenge convention by wearing your corset top over a button up shirt, ad a sharp pair of heels and combine it with the hottest trend being the culotte, no stranger to the fashion scene. When Jean Paul Gaultier discovered this oddly shaped device in an attic, it inspired him to pursue a fashion career. When I first laid eyes on it, and tried it on, it felt like a weapon of mass destruction as it throttled life out of me and made me feel as if I was spilling over my cup. So what's the cue? Why would I then promote it? Be mindful of buying it in your size, not leaving any chance to spill over, and if you lift your arms, it should remain in place without moving around, almost like well fitted bra. It wears beautifully as a top with tapered pants or full skirts, and worn on it's own with the addition of a long and extended scarf draping down your back, it adds a quick dash of French flair. After all less is more if you hail from that part of the world. My favourite way of sporting the trend is to wear it with an all White crisp cotton button up shirt and a culotte, high mules and a felt hat. How do you style the trend?