London Fashion Weekend

My diary entry from a day at London Fashion Weekend.

I can’t believe how long it has taken me to actually put together this blog post, I do not know how people blog on a daily basis! Anyhow, here is my entry about my wonderful experience at LFW, I hope you enjoy it…

Friday 25/09/15: 08.55

So I am on the train to London for London Fashion Weekend. It is a Friday morning, not a weekend when hubby can have the children, a real working day and I feel like a real ‘working woman’. With that, comes a mass of excitement and exhilaration! Can I just say that this very nearly didn’t happen as the school my children go to have added an inset day – TODAY!!! You can only imagine the hysteria that followed when I read the school Newsletter. A major meltdown occurred, until my very dear and kind friend stepped in. Not only does she have three boys of her own to look after but now my two children on top. Thank you Anna Parry, I love you very much!!! This all might sound rather dramatic but having only just got my youngest into school, I finally have the freedom to pursue my career that has been on the back burner for eight years. I adore my children but I am so ready to be Claire Jacklin once again and ‘work’. So throwing in an inset day when the children have only been back for four weeks, on the day I am going to London Fashion Weekend found me in a real pickle! Hence why this blog and my business ethos is all about ‘Real Women with Real Lives’. Simply put, it is – never easy!

This leads me on to my outfit. I don’t ever get stressed about what I’m going to wear to an event or an occasion. I suppose it is because I know my colours and I know my sense of style. However, I will be totally honest and can say that I have pondered all week about what I am going to wear today. I do find it interesting that what I ended up choosing, feels safe and comfortable. All the outfits I had created in my head never got a look in as I instinctively reached for the safe, warm and comfortable option. One of my ideas was to dig out a burgundy trilby hat that I own and love. I thought I’d look pretty cool, but in all honesty I would feel a bit silly walking to my local train station wearing it! I didn’t want to draw attention to myself or feel like I was acting a role for the day, I don’t play fashionista these days! I also had visions of wearing my beloved pointy toe leopard print court shoes. However, again when it came to this morning, I couldn’t face the thought of wearing these all day and having painful feet. I am so past all that! What it comes down to is feeling comfortable in what I am wearing and not trying to be something I am not. So, here is what I am wearing for the day. This outfit is so ‘me’, I feel comfortable (physically) and not self conscious at all.

My only concern is that when I get to the venue, the Saatchi Gallery on the King’s Road, I will start berating myself for being too boring, too conservative, too masculine, too ‘neat’. Why do we do this to ourselves? I do love the psychology of style and image, I could go on and on but that would be a whole new blog post.

So I began walking up the King’s Road taking in all the beautiful shops and the general buzz of London. It was a glorious day and I was so excited. I found the Saatchi Gallery and after snapping every shot of the LFW signage in excitement, I walked up to the security gates to hand over my ticket.

On the ground floor there were various pop up shops of some new and existing brands. I wasn’t expecting to be able to ‘shop’ on the day and noticed that discounted prices were being offered. I had arranged to meet a friend of mine, a fellow Stylist and as time for me was short, we decided to hit the first talk of the day with handbag designer Anya Hindmarch. The room was full when we arrived and I was beginning to think we would be turned away but luck had it that we were shown to the last few seats on the front row. Being short this was perfect, I couldn’t believe my luck! Anya Hindmarch was so interesting and incredibly humble. What I did notice was that Anya kept referring to London throughout her talk “London is probably the most creative City in the world” “London has the best colleges in the world, Royal College of Art, Central St Martins and London College of Fashion”. Having lived in London and even working at the London College of Fashion, I wanted to raise the point and asked “Is it all about London? Having lived and moved away to start a family – is London only where it is at?”. Anya was kind in her reply and said that I had raised a good question (phew!!) she replied to say that she felt there were creative hubs developing around the UK. For example Anya referred to the large sculpting scene going on in Newcastle and that Edinburgh was currently very vibrant. I went on to ask about Wales and furthered that by saying “Would you keep your eye out on Cardiff?” To which her response was “I promise I will!” I felt elated, not only had I dared ask a genuine question but I had a genuine response with the attention being pointed to Cardiff – hurrah!

Knowing my train was leaving at 4.15pm I needed to cram in as much as possible. So it was straight to the Trend Show where yet again, by luck, we got to sit on the front row or ‘FROW’ as it is commonly referred to! The presenter was Angela Scanlon who I thought was amazing. I loved her energy and vibrant red hair, I wish I could present to an audience the way she does, as she genuinely enjoyed it!

So down came the four main trends of this current AW’15 season. It is one thing to read about them but it is something else to actually see them through a show. Snapping as much as I could on my phone I got some rather blurry shots. The models walk incredibly fast, so it wasn’t easy. I’d rather show my blurred shots of the day than scoop them from the official LFW website, as these images are much more wearable outfits. You can of course view all about London Fashion Weekend by clicking on the official site here

The brands they used were by the likes of Marc by Marc Jacobs, J Brand, Vivienne Westwood and more down to my arena Karen Millen and Reiss.

Into the Wild – lots of animal print either in one statement piece, or through the use of accessories. Leopard, cheetah, snake or zebra, whichever you fancy!

Punk Rocks – Experiment with punk styling, lots of leather, bold tartan, safety pins and studded handbags – Love it!

Super Retro – 70’s vibe is back, flower and psychedelic prints, patchwork and wide brimmed hats.

Marsala Tones – 50 shades of red in various tones such as paprika, plum and burgundy. Work Marsala into your look in any way you can.

After the catwalk show there was time to get a quick drink. Having bought a Luxe Pass we had access to a very nice bar/lounge area where drinks were being served as well as beautiful canapés. This gave time to chat about what Lisa & I had seen and catch up generally. It was so hard to absorb all of the day as I had such little time. As the drinks started to flow I realised I had to get downstairs one more time to have a quick scout of the pop up shops. It was here I found myself trying on some sunglasses. With two (or maybe three) glasses of bubbles in me I was confident enough to go into the booth they had set up and have some silly photos taken. There is no way I would have done this on the way in, walking around on my lonesome looking for my friend! So here is a rather ‘happy’ me, after an exciting few hours, before heading back to reality and leaving this fantasy world behind.

All in all it was a truly amazing day. I came away totally buzzing, not only from the fact that I had gone but also that I had got to sit on the FROW (twice!), I had plucked up the courage to ask Anya Hindmarch a question or two and was so chuffed with her response. I also felt pleased that, outfit wise, I didn’t look too boring or dull, nor did I feel it on the day. I certainly didn’t look ‘fashionista’ like some of the younger teenagers there, who I guess were hoping to get spotted for modeling or such like. However, I never wanted to – the trilby idea soon got put away! What I learnt was that what I preach to my clients, was right to be practiced. That you should always go with your own style personality and not emulate others, or wear what you think is expected of you on any certain day. If there was one little niggle, it was that I had let a lack of confidence step in and not believed in myself enough for the event. If I’m honest, no one particularly stood out as being ‘wow’, or intimidating in any way. Life is busy, people are busy and if anything like me, you get dressed as quickly as you can, as you have a million other things to sort out before you leave the house. So here is a lesson to myself, believe in who you are, be true to your own personal style and accept that we are real women with real lives – Amen!

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