BANK #SS14 Collections & Trends

Yesterday I attended my first press day and was lucky enough to preview BANK’s new collection for their in-house brands; Ribbon and Blonde + Blonde as well as their two new and exclusive for SS14 brands; Pink Soda and Fenchurch (pour femme this time!)

Pink Soda for SS14 is the epitome of femininity! The collection’s colour palette features mainly pastels with bold embellishments, articulate beadwork and lots and lots of sequins. The dresses are drop dead gorgeous and so sweet and girly looking, it’s almost like they’ve been dipped in sugar. Take a look for yourself!

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I do love the inclusion of the bright oranges and splashed white in all it’s lacey and intricately embellished beauty. One of BANK’s key trends ‘Spice Trail’ resides within the Pink Soda brand and the design team have taken inspiration from the far and middle east, embodying the influences in the forms of statement jackets and jewelled accessories (which I forgot to take pictures of, sorry guys!)

The second newly established collection is Fenchurch’s exclusive collection for women and that collection, take my word for it, is amazing. I am in love with most of the pieces from the capsule collection! The muse for Fenchurch’s womenswear line is the notion of ‘girls wearing guys clothing’ and also the apparent influx of such from celebrity pop culture i.e. Rihanna, Rihanna, Rihanna. It’s a wonderful collection and I honestly couldn’t stop myself from reaching out to it from amongst the rest of the beautiful clothing/trends, maybe it’s cause I’m secretly hood? Or just very, very into fierce street style looks which this collection embodies well. The American baseball shirts/vests/Varsity style shirts/appliqued bomber jackets are all given an androgynous edge when worn by females and I like that Fenchurch’s collection for women upholds the same base template as the original menswear collection did (which attracted women to buy Fenchurch’s mens clothing in the first place! At least before this collection was created.) Teamed with chunky jewellery, edgy accessories such as see through fanny pack bags and controversial marijuana leaf prints, this collection is fun and fierce (forever linking this word to Beyonce!) and assertive in its right to be seen and heard. And I for one cannot wait to get my hands on it!

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(How very Versace! This shirt needs to be mine ASAP!)

Two other exciting trends present in BANK’s in-house brand Ribbon are Geo Mod and Botanical Garden. Bold gorgeous floral prints and patterns for S/S14 but with 60’s inspired silhouettes and digital and depth adding grid-like prints on skater and shift dresses, need I say more? I’m starting to wonder whether it’s not too early to start shopping for Spring/Summer…

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Also, how bad are these shoes begging to be bought by you?

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(The futuristic looking and neon green clutch have stolen my heart!)

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(The two toned neon block heels<3)

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The block heeled monochrome boot was probably my favourite from shoe wear, and that was definitely a hard decision to make from so many uber cool shoes (flatforms, sandals, heels you name it) to choose from.

I’m already excited for S/S14 and it’s not even here yet! It’s definitely tempting to max out your credit card or spend your newly acquired pay check on the new trends and collections that BANK has to offer, so maybe it’s a good thing that they don’t get released for a few more months? Maybe, talvez, peut-être…

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Fur Fur Faux

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Bleue Faux Fur CoatTopshop

Faux Fur StoleTopshop

Checkered Dress alternativeRiver Island

I adore the alternate faux fur colour scheme this girl was wearing, the light blue and the pastel peach stole went well together and served as my route of escape from one of the promoters outside Shepherd’s Bush station. The reason as to why people adore the (in my own words) dreaded Winter season has always evaded me but I think I may be starting to realise the basis for their ardour. These cold, cold months give rise to fashion that we otherwise keep under wraps, rise to the layers and fabrics that stay silent during the warmer months. Recently I’ve been quite taken aback by the fur trend  (faux of course). My primary coat for this season is faux fur itself and I wouldn’t want it any other way, it’s the Brown version of this coat by M&S and I am honestly in love. It keeps me super toasty and looking on point haha.

What’s your winter coat like? I’d love to know xo

Meadham Kirchhoff for Topshop Collection!

I’ve been super, super excited ever since Meadham Kirchhoff announced that they were collaborating with Topshop at the beginning of this month and yesterday I took a look at the extended preview of the Meadham Kirchhoff for Topshop collection online on British Vogue!

I am blown away by this collaboration, it doesn’t top their S/S 14 collection in any way, not at all, of course not! (I still have dreams about that wonderful victoriana avec gothica twist collection). However the individual ensemble pieces truly do represent Meadham Kirchhoff at their best for high street, they certainly didn’t tone it down for the masses! The pieces that I’ve seen so far have been a play of rainbow love; lots of pastels, very, very few dark colours, LOTS of plush fleece, mosaic prints, neon and pentagrams! I do think that this collection has taken stems from the S/S 14 troupe, the inclusion of the feminine lace trimmings at the end of dresses as well as the flow and hemlines/cuts of the dresses/blouses are similar to it at the least.

The inspiration for the amazing Edward Meadham and Benjamin Kirchhoff’s collection for Topshop is an imaginary girl band called “The Cherry’s” and there will be four mini-ranges within the collection, each inspired by a different lady in the fictional band – Cherry Cherie, Cherry Satanica, Cherry Blossom and Cherry Pikka. Edward has said ‘It’s a bit Spice Girls, a bit Marylin Manson, and a bit Jem and the Holograms with a large dose of Kembra Pfhaler’ (Woah)

Well, are you excited yet?

To get you all more into the mood, here are a few of my favourite pieces from the collection preview so far!

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(And of course the ever present cherry motif)

The only thing I’m not too sure about are the shoes designed by the amazing duo, there is definitely a lot of harajuku influenced styles involved. I can appreciate the concept and it does grab my attention… just not in a good way. I would definitely buy a pair as a collectible or artwork piece but never to adorn my feet with. Take a look for yourself –

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(I think these are cute though)

The Meadham Kirchhoff for Topshop collection releases in stores tomorrow on the 21rst of November! And I for one am definitely going to be swinging by the nearest Topshop to check it out for myself 🙂

Bjs Nailah **

Abe’s Gone Street

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Scarf – Vintage

Abe Sweatshirt – Forever 21

Black contrast leggings with ribbed panel – River Island

Fringe side bag – Jane Norman – Similar found Here and Here

Clare Lace Up Boots – BANK Fashion

My sister bought this amazing sweatshirt during the weekend and hasn’t seen it since… I may be to blame for that. I saw it peeking out of the corner of the Forever 21 carrier bag on Saturday evening and just haven’t been able to let it go. I guess I’ve got too much love for my homie Abe here. I’ve been looking for a statement sweatshirt for quite some time now and I think finding this one – albeit in my sisters clutches, is nothing short of a miracle! It’s so nice and warm as well as just being really cool. I teamed it with the contrast leggings and Clare boots to give off a really relaxing and chill vibe and the vintage scarf just added the allure of a 1970’s hippie-delic love child. The look was set up around the sweatshirt and using it as inspiration I decided to create an ensemble that existed between the 1970’s-80’s so with the inclusion of a few accessories (tasselled fringe bag and wooden necklace I got in Kenya) + incredibly messy hair the end result looked like a early 80’s grunge skater kid who see’s the world through rose tinted glasses (hippie influenced in other terms) but still has an edge.

I’d love to hear your opinions on the look 🙂

Paz e Amor,

Nailah ***

Buffalo’s back!

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Coat – Cyberdog

Leggings – ASDA?!

Shoes – Buffalo

So yesterday, whilst I was on my way to an interview for one of the universities I’d applied to – an interview I thought I was going to be late for- I came across this eclectic shock of colour and visual appeasement. I knew I had no time to spare but couldn’t pass up the opportunity to photograph such a look!

Can you believe those leggings are from ASDA? Can you? I couldn’t when I first heard so! The shoes are amazing though, I always knew Buffalo platforms would make a comeback, I just wasn’t sure when. This whole ensemble gave off a modernist vibe, fitting enough as Cyberdog is known for their far into the future designs which have been known to shock quite a few (and by that I mean a lot) people. Their cutting edge style and inherent funkiness have tided many, who find the vast majority of what’s in the high street stores to be boring, over to being their faithful consorts. Truth be told, I quite like it and think that it will blow up as a trend in the next few years. Only time will tell!

Asides from that, I did make it to my interview on time! Ten minutes early to be exact and it went incredibly well. My interviewer turned out to have an aunt who was the New York Vogue’s editor in the 1950’s and a mother who collected countless pieces by the late and ever so missed Yves Saint Laurent. We talked about fashion the whole time with no mention of literature whatsoever (applying for an English degree!) and she stated that it was a good interview that I should be proud of and that she was sure I would be offered a place at the university. I was thrilled!

Also expect new post coming your way this weekend featuring a piece from the Kardashian Collection for Lipsy! The dress just arrived in the mail today and it is gorgeous! Looking forward to sharing the look I have planned with you all :]

Have a great day everyone!

Bjs Nailah **

Pakistan Fashion Week London

So on the 2nd and 3rd of November 2013, Pakistan Fashion Week held its fifth installment at the Hilton Paddington hotel in the fashion capital city of London. The shows which have been held annually are organized by Riwayat, a company that lives up to its definition as ‘riwayat’ or traditions play a key role in Pakistani culture. The name was specifically chosen by the company’s founder, Adnan Ansari for the platform that brings Pakistan’s best to the European market.

Now in its fifth segment, Pakistan Fashion Week LONDON 5 definitely did not fail to impress. The 90ft catwalk featured either top or emerging Pakistani designers such as Gul Ahmed Textiles, Monad, Moazzam Abbasi, Sam & Huma Naz, Ayesha Aejaz, SMK etc. And the accompanying boutique lounge allowed guests the opportunity to purchase quality bespoke designer clothing pieces ranging from modest to slightly less than modest price ranges.

The originality of the designs presented by the respective brands all contained a similar theme; Riwayat. They were traditional in the sense that they all paid tribute to the Pakistani sort of Eastern style promoting sequence fabrics and unique embellishments with a large part of most collections calling attention to the ways in which materials flowed and draped ones figure all whilst staying quite contemporary.

The main types of fabrics that stayed consistent amongst the collections were velvet, chiffon and silk but the collections viewed were far from monotonous as the signature styled embroidery of each designer gave the pieces their individual edge and captivated the eyes of everyone in the room.

Although there were pieces of menswear in the show, the ensembles, few and far between were largely overshadowed by the more prominent and extravagant womenswear outfits. The use of textiles in Gul Ahmed’s collection in particular caught my eye with the surprising synergy of the varying mix and match of prints. As well as Sam & Huma Naz’s representation of multicultural styles that stemmed from traditional Pakistani to Punjabi and even ranged from 70’s themed outfits to those that were Bedouin influenced.

Another theme that was apparent from the majority of the collections was the precept of romance, with the dresses ranging from poetic long sheath like lengths to more practical less voluminous tops over palazzo pants. Interestingly a recent trend that has come up in fashion, particularly haute couture, was integrated into the designs of some of the collections. That trend being the cape; which is attached to the back of dresses or jackets and thus creates a fairytale-like impression reminiscent of one’s childhood. It reminded me of the outfit Aladin gets conjured up by the Djinn when he seeks to court Princess Jasmine.

Riwayat has come a long way from when the company was first set up and Mr. Ansari hard work has paid off as on the 30th of October, Pakistan Fashion Week was also able to showcase the collections of its talented designers in Paris! I expect PFW to only get bigger and better from here on and look forward to the next year’s event! 🙂

Gul Ahmed Textiles

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Nature was definitely a theme that was prominent in this collection with the inclusion of tree’s and birds woven into a lot of the patterns on the outfits. Of all the textiles in the various collections I do think that Gul Ahmed’s use of prints was the most creative and thus the one that I liked best!

Moazzam Abbasi

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This collection was very romantic, it almost carried the resonant motif of coveting one’s lover who seems so close and yet so far. The colour theme was white with very few other colours playing into it but those that did blended in well, mostly being beige and gold with a few passionate reds making an appearance as well. I loved the ball gown worn by the show stopper, absolutely adored it which was surprising as I’m not usually a fan of transparent lace boning.

Monad

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Monad’s collection, I have mixed feelings about. The outfits were beautiful, the surprising pop of colour (neon pink, blue etc.) on the overall darker cloth palette was a brilliant design strategy and the embellishments and embroidery were attention grabbing enough without being too overpowering. The only flaw (for me) was the use of velvet. For some reason I’ve never been able to stand it, the mere thought of it makes my skin break out in goosebumps and I feel sick if I touch it. I’m not quite sure why but it is as it is. Definitely something I’m going to have to get over as velvet plays such a vital part in today’s fashion trends/styles that I enjoy. 😦

Sam Huma & Naz 

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Some of the designs from this collection literally took my breath away. Incredibly stunning! There were more drapey layers involved and so the models just seemed to flow on the catwalk which just made them look really elegant. I started thinking about how much time it must take to create just one of these outfits when I was watching the show, the detail on them; the mesh of prints and patterns, embroidery and the dazzling textiles worked together amazingly well  and there’s was so much of it too! Pakistani fashion designers really are on a league of their own.

Bridal Couture

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I liked the coordination on the couples outfits, it worked well with the whole wedding theme but I couldn’t help but think that some of the single’s outfits were more extravagant than the couple ones. The designs were very feminine and very fresh as they encompassed their personal influences from Eastern culture but were able to come off as very contemporary. The brand Bridal Couture however is a bit iffy. A lot of women commented on the event page of PFW saying they had paid for outfits and never gotten their money back, so as lovely as the designs were/are, I wouldn’t trust it.

Shabbir Textile

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Now this was probably the best collection out of them all for me! It was just so colourful and fun. The outfits all took their inspirations from varied cultures and time periods and were all so youthfully vibrant. The theme to me seemed to be just that, young women who were dominant and fun and well aware of their feminine charms. The floral patterns, the geometric shapes, the jewelled headbands, the capes etc etc were all wonderful and were all something I’d definitely wear myself 🙂

Usman Dittu

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One word to describe this collection; sensual. It was quite traditional compared to the other collections and yet contemporary as it sort of rivals the societal conventions of Eastern style by its not so covert celebration of sexuality and the female form. The cuts on the outfits emphasised the models main points of beauty, their waist, their long limbs and their collarbones (one of the parts of our bodies that I personally find the most beautiful).

I’ve never particularly liked Asian garments and have always opted out of wearing them when occasions that demand such finery arise but seeing some of these collections may just have changed my mind. I may just don a similar sort of outfit to one of the ones in the pictures above to the next event I’m invited to. If I do (I think I will) I’ll definitely share some of the pictures with you all!

Hope everyone has a great coming week!

Bjs Nailah **

Novembers Nuances

Novembers Nuances

Wildfox Couture long sleeve sweater
$360 – harrods.com

Silver jewelry
prettylittlething.com

Pieces chain waist belt
$24 – welikefashion.com

Gray lipstick
etsy.com

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My inspiration for this piece was slightly neo-gothic chick meets mean mosher model.

It’s November so I tailored the set with the cold front in mind (Have I mentioned how much I hate the cold?). The sweater is on my  wishlist, maybe more so because the phrasing on it is slightly anecdotal than it just being really cute. It took me quite some time to find a pair of shoes that appealed to me for this look and I have to say these ones earned the attention. How amazing are they! The exaggerated flatfrom heel, the sleek shine of the boots, what else could they be but Jeffrey Campbell’s?

I kept the jewellery simple (for once) the chunky silver link necklace and the belt looked like they belonged together so pairing them with this outfit wasn’t that much of a genius move. Perhaps I  subconsciously downplayed the jewellery so I could splurge on the beauty aspect, don’t you just love that gray shade of lipstick? I know I do 🙂

Now I adore tartan prints so when I saw the satchel (I’ve been looking for the perfect one for a few good months) I knew it had to be included in the set, ditto for the skirt. The asymmetrical hemline has been popular for skirts lately and as much as I do like them, they kind of remind me of skorts (you know the transgendered product of a skirt and short.) I did like this skirt a lot though but it looks a bit plain on its own so the belt was a necessity in its case. Tartan textiles have always been a favorite of mine and for some reason remind me of one of my most loved designers, the late Alexander McQueen.

Gone but never forgotten. R.I.P.

Oh and I have another exciting piece of news! I went to Pakistan Fashion Week on Saturday the 2nd of November and have whipped up a little article as well as a whole lot of photos which will be up by this weekend. Some of the outfits really took my breath away. It was truly an incredible evening!

Hope everyone has a good week and looks forward to the next post *fingers crossed*

Bjs Nailah **