Monday, 28 February 2011

D&G's star studded AW11 Collection - Milan Fashion Week 2011

Yesterday we literally saw a star-studded collection from Dolce and Gabbana from Milan Fashion Week. An out there collection, the Italian design duo tapped into the current catwalk craze for gender-bending  in an upbeat collection that perfectly married the duality of masculine and feminine dress. With models divided into two camps – ‘Tomboys and Temptresses’, there was a clear split in the collection. The Tomboys sported slick, tailored looks of blazers and brogues whereas the Temptresses were floating down the runway in sheer lace, pretty star prints and sequins. Crossover between the two came from mixing boyish brogues with floor length gowns and towering heels with sharp suits.

The collection offered a real treat for the eye, with stunning star prints gracing sweeping dresses and shirts, as well as tights and leggings in variety of colours adding a vibrant feel to the collection. Further strong prints came in the form of musical notes, hinting at a strong print focus following through from SS11.

An all black and white finale brought the two teams together, with one side in braces and trousers and the other with in strong underwear-as-outerwear themed items. Boy-meets-girl is nothing new for D&G. the pairing of masculine chic and provocative femininity has been a staple look for the label for over 20 years, they are simply successfully reworking it collection by collection.

Overall, it was an exciting collection from the Italian duo, with strong elements that are sure to be translated into the shops in months to come!

What do you think? Do you have stars in your eyes or do you think their musical prints were out of tune?

Versace AW11 - Milan Fashion Week 2011

On Sunday, Donatella Versace presented a baroque/military-influenced AW11 collection. We can always rely on Versace to deliver drama and decadence and this collection did just that. Set in the sumptuous tented garden where her late brother Gianni always showed, a star-studded guest list took to their seats for some high-octane Versace style glamour.

The label’s signature Medusa swirls were enlarged and simplified into a statement, single curled vine that was all over the runway as well as the collection. It was a refreshing move on for the brand’s logo. Distinctive prints appeared on military style shift dresses of rich, decadent hues of purple and gold yellow.

Donatella said that the baroque aesthetic was the main inspiration behind the collection – “Baroque is a key element of the Versace history. And yet it is contemporary, and works for this moment in time. Baroque brings drama, but to make it modern I keep the line very clean, and used ‘pop’ colours” she said.

A punchy collection, aimed at pleasing their loyal customers, there was plenty of black (Donatella’s favourite) accented with flashes of intense colour. No expense was spared with luxurious fabrics, including python, feathers, felted cashmere, leather and suede creating floor length gowns and tailored double-breasted coats.

Despite it being the A/W collection, the dresses demanded some skin to be on show with daring one-shoulder and sleeveless dresses , however the look was more demure that previous collections, hinting at a more reserved direction for the brand.

The show was a collection of interesting shapes and bold hints of rich colours. As with all Versace collections, decadence was a key theme but was toned down somewhat by sleek styling. A refreshing collection from Versace!

Friday, 25 February 2011

Prada is perfectly innocent at Milan Fashion Week AW11

Prada’s AW11 collection brought a sense of innocence to the strong, womanly sophistication that the norm from big name labels. The influence behind this collection, according to Miuccia Prada, was “not a girl dressed like a lady, but a lady rediscovering her innocence”.  After SS11’s wild and brightly coloured collection it was a return to what Prada does best, taking clothes that we think we know best and rearranging them in a way that is slightly unsettling, yet perfectly refreshing. 
Like Gucci, the look the collection steered away from the 1970’s and went back to the 1960’s, resembling the silhouette of an 1960’s air hostess, with drop waisted, big button, mid thigh coat dresses and knee high boots – signaling an innocent, ladylike style. Aviation was a strong theme, with goggle-like glasses, short gloves and aviation style hats adorning the models.

The colour palette was a mix of striking versus subdued, with plums, greys and dark teals being contrasted again phonebox red and canary yellow. Coloured fur trims and coats added a real sense of luxury to the collection, further enhancing the chic, stylish women that Prada aspires to dress. 

The handbags were held tightly against the body by the models – clutched sideways, almost like children’s toys – and were featured in soft leathers, python skins and exotic skins.

Miuccia Prada, unlike most designers, says that she is happy when her designs are copied on the high street, as for her, fashion is about turning the ideas in her head into designs that will cover magazines, red carpets, offices and train carriages all over the world. The subtle sedate of this show is what Prada does best, and this superb show will be bought and copied worldwide. Despite starting over an hour late (“It takes a long time to make things charming” – Miuccia Prada) the show ignited a real sense of excitement and went down a storm.

What was your favourite look from the collection? Do you think the styles can be translated onto the high street come autumn?

Thursday, 24 February 2011

Alberta Ferretti AW11 - Milan Fashion Week 2011

The first thing you notice about Alberta Ferretti’s AW11 collection is that it’s not channeling that 70’s feel that we’ve seen so much of lately. Oh no, this collection goes down a complete different road: think sixties mod. Of late we have seen collections dominated by flowy and ethereal shapes, but here Ferretti has delivered something completely different. Think pronounced, strong, slim shapes from high-neck collars, quarter length sleeves, long printed coats, slim trousers and seriously bright pops of colour.

Prints have to be described as “groovy” (has it ever been acceptable to use that word when describing fashion?! Up until now, I would have to say no, but Ferretti is changing that…) and take us back to a time of Twiggy and retro boots.

As the show progressed it became apparent that AW11 will be all about the details. From crystal embellishment to delicate ruffles, strong femininity reigned supreme!

Gucci AW11 Collection - Milan Fashion Week 2011

Well, Ciao Colour! Gucci certainly set the tone for Milan Fashion Week with a collection full of eye-popping  colour! Frida Giannini delivered a collection that was full of luxury and a visual delight. A clear theme of the collection was luxurious 70’s, with lady-like silhouettes created by skirtsuits, wide-leg trousers, tie-neck blouses and halterneck dresses. All immensely wearable, we are sure to see more than a few imitations hit the high street.

The colour pallette can only be described as eclectic. Rich, intense hues of teal, emerald green, sapphire blue and ruby red were used to liven up furs, suedes and snakeskins. The combinations of colours exuded sheer indulgence, with deep blues contrasted against olive greens, and royal purple next to vibrant teal. It’s a brave move to have such an eye-popping colour palette in a season that calls for so much black and grey, but then we have to think about the Gucci woman. She’s not the type of woman to shy away from colour and blend into the crowd. Oh no, she’s all about letting the world know that she’s got style and loves luxury, and that she’s not afraid to flaunt it.

It was a great start to the week, Giannini effortlessly captured that Italian exuberance and it was a refreshing move on from the post-war, heritage feel we saw in London.

What are your views on the collection? Is it eye-popping for all the right or wrong reasons?

Wednesday, 23 February 2011

Ciao Milan!

Following on from New York and London fashion weeks, fashions biggest names take their new Autumn/Winter11 collections to the runways of Milan. Often hailed as fashion’s capital city, I’m off to Milan to check out the latest installments from the fashion world!

Be sure to read my reviews and let me know what you think of the collections! Ciao!

Fiorelli on Gok!

Love him or hate him, there’s no denying Gok Wan knows a thing or two about fashion! He’s become something of a household name in the last few years, thanks to his fashion based TV shows. Although at times he can be slightly irritating, what I love about him is his ability to restore women’s confidence in themselves. I have to admit that I frequently get goosebumps/a little tear in my eye when he reveals a new makeover for a woman who previously had zero self-esteem. It’s heart-warming stuff.

Last night Gok and his TV show, Gok’s Clothes Roadshow, headed to Birmingham to help three slummy mummy’s become yummy mummy’s once again. In the high street vs. designer battle at the end of the show Gok chose our best selling Loretta fan clutch from the Fiorelli Black collection as part of his ‘ultimate boho 70’s high street look’. Check out the clip below to see how great it looks on the catwalk!

This fan shape is our favourite shape of the collection, and we have it in a number of on trend colours and fabrics. As Gok highlighted, the Loretta in black is perfect for the 70’s trend, thanks to its subtle weave detailing. In the Astor range, we have luxurious leopards and lizards, which are perfect for the exotic skins trend that is everywhere at the moment.

What do you think of Gok? Do you think he’s a fashion guru or just a bit irritating?!

Tuesday, 22 February 2011

Burberry takes over Piccadilly Circus – LFW 2011

Monday afternoon saw us venturing away from the catwalks and trundling down to Piccadilly Circus for Burberry’s live streaming of their AW11 collection. We were pretty excited about the prospect of being able to watch their show in the hustle and bustle of Piccadilly, what a great way to get everyone involved with their show!

The crowd and screen at Piccadilly

The live stream
We arrived early, and to our amazement saw a good crowd already positioned around the steps of the Eros Memorial Fountain, is this the new front row for the masses?! There was a real buzz, which was heightened by a live countdown timer on the illuminated screens, as groups of fashion students and office workers gathered to watch the first ever live screening of a catwalk on the billboard screens. Confused tourists still posed for photos and, having realized what was going on, couldn’t believe their luck to have stumbled upon such an experience! Before we knew it, our little crowd was being snapped at, sure to be shown to families back in their native countries.

Soon the crowd was up to 300-strong and the anticipation for the start of the show was high! To our disappointment, a technical glitch meant that the countdown timer jumped from 41 seconds back up to 4 minutes, but the patient crowd didn’t seem to mind too much. Showing scenes of celebrities arriving everyone was monitoring who was there and what they were wearing. Alexa Chung looked effortlessly cool (as always..) in an oversized jumper, leggings and a bright turquoise saddle bag. Ellie Goulding got her bling on with a stunning Burberry gold-studded Mac. The perfect choice!

When the streaming finally started the reaction was similar to that of a regular catwalk. People were taking images on their phones and chatting about what they loved and loathed. Unfortunately, like the weather conditions, the live stream kept freezing, which was slightly irritating to say the least as it meant that a few outfits were missed. However, from what we did see of the collection there was certainly nothing disappointing.  Once again, we see a British Heritage with a twist theme shine through thanks to a cow print flat cap teamed with a vibrant orange structured coat.

Structured shapes and rich autumnal colours of red, orange, pea green and duck egg blue dominated the collection and were given a feminine twist with clever waist belts and extreme wedge shoes. The inclusion of fur gave the collection a luxurious feel and tweed skirts further pushed a sense of British countryside glamour.

So, I guess there are two aspects of the Burberry show to review…the clothes and the live screening. The collection itself was brilliant, everything I expected from the British brand. The live screening, however, was fairly disappointing. The lack of music was a real problem, especially when tweets from the show were saying how great the music was - a soundtrack of cars beeping and droning bus engines doesn’t really do much for the collection! By the end of the show the initial buzzing atmosphere was definitely lost, probably due to the live feed constantly freezing, and the sub-zero weather conditions. So, it looks like Burberry will have to work a bit harder if they want to pull off a live screening next year – I think I will let someone else go to the live screening and I will stay warm and cozy at the live show!

Were you at the live screening in Piccadilly? What did you think about it? Would you go again next year?


Having designed for the likes of Lady Gaga, Cheryl Cole, Rihanna and Beyonce, there was a lot resting on David Koma’s collection this year at London Fashion Week. Strongly tipped as the next big thing, the BFC tent at Somerset House was bursting at the seams bright and early this morning for his show – confirming that this show is indeed the hot ticket of the week. 

Inspired by dark forests, Tim Burton and hallucinations, Koma’s collection did not disappoint. Dots were the name of the game, with laser cut and printed dot patterns adorning Koma’s signature thick material body con dresses. Adding a new dimension Koma’s collection featured tight leather panelling and the most memorable theme of any collection seen so far this week: giant fur pom poms. Yes, pom poms. As if pom poms alone weren’t outrageous enough, Koma really drew gasps as he revealed pom poms in bright, primary colours. It was a refreshing break from the abundance of earthy, dark colours we have seen so far in the AW collections. Adding another dimension to the collection was a selection of dresses and skirts with a printed face embedded in a burst of colour. We were lucky enough to meet Koma after the show and he informed us that the face was actually that of an Italian nun – how this fits in with the themes of the collection we’re not sure but hey, it works! A final special touch for the collection came from fur adornments either gently positioned around the cuffs, or carefully placed in asymmetrical lines across the body.

This collection was a real step up from the clean-lined, sleek silhouetted black dresses we have previously seen from Koma. It was a step out of the ordinary and although leaving the audience divided, Koma has once again highlighted impeccable sculptured tailoring and we can safely say that we are truly inspired by the bravery of such a new designer!

Monday, 21 February 2011


Sunday afternoon saw a somewhat bleary-eyed fashion crowd pull their act together and head to the Royal Courts of Justice for Vivienne Westwood’s Red Label AW11 collection preview. The location was perfect for Westwood – beautiful, conservative and grand, providing the perfect backdrop for her rebellious designs.
Part of Westwood’s appeal is her ability to consistently break the rules and always get it so perfectly right. A true talent! Openly admitting that she doesn’t read fashion magazines or follow trends she has this magical ability to create ingenious designs, that as well as being perfectly on trend, always have a deeper underlying message, aimed at educating the fashion world. 

This season saw a London inspired collections, in particular ‘the Londoner life’. With plenty of tartan and wool and asymmetric pieces there was a very British, punky feel. Looks were layered to perfection and teamed with huge, messy hair and crazy, smudged, almost clown-like make up. Taking additional inspiration from Lewis Carroll’s ‘Alice in Wonderland’ there was a real sense of the surreal and eclecticism thanks to Westwood’s use of velvet, cotton and wool.  

Key trends to come out of the collection were heritage (a huge trend for AW11 it seems), statement outerwear and clashing prints. Colours were splashed throughout the collection but red definitely stole the show.
Once again, the fashion icon has delivered a unique and coveted collection for AW11.

Sunday, 20 February 2011


Mulberry had a lot to prove this season at LFW. Perhaps one of the most quintessential British brands, all eyes were on the fashion house to, once again, deliver something spectacular. And wow! That’s just what they did. Taking over the ballroom of Claridges Hotel (what a perfect choice of location) they transformed it into a woodland wonderland with a smothering of pretty moss foliage, birds on branches, furry animals and subtle overhead tweeting, to provide the perfect backdrop for their AW11 collection. 

The phrase ‘if you go down to the woods today you’re sure of a nice surprise’ was ringing through our minds as we sat there waiting for a show that promised “quintessential English countryside mixed with grown up glamour, with the signature Mulberry quirk sprinkled amidst a friendly forest of woodland creatures”.
Full of fantastical creatures, the scene was perfectly set with a reading from Roald Dahl’s ‘Fantastic Mr Fox’. Mulberry’s creative director Emma Hill was overheard saying, “I wanted this to be an uber English collection. I was inspired by hedgerows and traditional English pursuits – hunting, shooting and fishing”. As soon as the models appeared her inspiration was clear for all to see – grey fishing trousers and outdoors shooting jackets and coats were given the Mulberry ‘sprinkling’ with hardware borrowed from this season’s must have Tillie bag. 

Knitwear was a case of super size and super cosy, again drawing a perfect reference to English country attire. Breaking the trend, dresses were designed for maximum impact, with strong structured shapes and soft ethereal maxis full of delectable details. All effortlessly contemporary, they were accessorised with boxy coats and chunky belted knits. 

Unlike many shows already seen, Mulberry broke the mould with their colour palette, steering away from a dominance of reds, oranges and teals. Instead they opted for soft khakis, greys, blacks and, perhaps most refreshingly, lavenders and plums.

Next we saw Mulberry introduce their AW11 bags. Just what we’d been waiting for! Here we saw the Bayswater updated with poacher style straps and studs to form the Bayswater Satchel. Alexa has been updated with fox locks (Fantastic Mr Fox indeed!) and Tillie has been given a fantastic quilted update. Two new families, Taylor and Carter see the Mulberry range grow exquisitely with two more sophisticated, easy shapes that are sure to be on the arms of anyone who’s anyone before you can say Fantastic Mr Fox.
We can’t really choose our favourite aspect of this show – it had high expectations to meet, and it certainly didn’t disappoint! Suffice to say, our favourite show so far!

Pictures from

Friday, 18 February 2011

London’s Calling! LFW A/W11 is here!

With New York Fashion Week coming to a close yesterday, it’s time for the world’s fashion to turn to London and our exceptional UK designers for the next phase of trends for AW11. The action kicked off this morning at 9am in the beautiful, iconic Somerset House, home of the British Fashion Council, with Paul Costelloe.
So who are we looking out for? Heritage brands are always top of our list, and here in the UK we have some of the biggest and the best. We’ll be paying particular attention to Burberry (as will half of London seeing as they are showing it on the screens of Piccadilly Circus – genius!) and Mulberry, to see what classics they will be presenting, and what the next big It bags will be!

Also catching our eye will be the new, fresh designers showcasing at LFW, such as House of Holland and Louise Gray. We can’t get enough of Gray’s fresh colours-of-the-rainbow pallete and sun bleached prints. Uplifting and fun, they are a breath of air and we can’t wait to see how she will translate these into an A/W look.

Not forgetting the international talent that will be gracing London town, we are highly anticipating the collections from Alexander Wang and the delectable Tom Ford

We’ll be there all week, attending all the shows and rubbing shoulders with the fashion elite, so be sure to check in regularly at Fiorelli’s Style Notes for all the latest updates from LFW!

Pure Exhibition 2011

There’s a real buzz of excitement in Fiorelli HQ at the moment as our new AW11 range has been finalized! Surrounded by hundreds of samples, the design team has meticulously gone through the collection and has created one of our strongest ranges to date! Focusing on the theme ‘Your Space’ the collection showcases a range of expertly designed bags that focus on the essential qualities needed to allocate organized space into your accessories. The designs show functional beauty teamed with strong identities and bold looks. A colour palette of rich, earthly hues combines the warmth of oxblood and tan with the depth of rich, luxurious navy, whilst colour blocking of neutral shades adds a softer tone to the collection.

Pure Exhibition, which came to a close on Tuesday, is the first of the big UK trade fairs and is always a great indication of how successful our new collections are going to be. Naturally, preparing for Pure is a nerve-wracking time as we make sure that every sample is perfect and that all our new promotional material is sorted so that our trade customers get the best possible introduction to the range. Luckily, we received glowing reviews for the range, and everyone was really excited about the direction our brand is heading in. Have a sneak peak at our new AW11 collection in these photos of our great stand at Pure!

Thursday, 17 February 2011

Victoria's clever pregnancy promotion!

With a number of high profile celebrity pregnancies occupying our gossip columns at the moment it’s hard to keep track of all the latest baby news! However, one pregnancy that is always going to be at the top of our list is a certain Mrs Beckham pregnancy. With rumours flying around that it’s going to be a girl (wouldn’t that be great – a mini Mrs Beckham would certainly give Suri Cruise a run for her money in the style stakes!) everyone is hanging onto to every word that comes out of camp Beckham!

In what is undoubtedly one of the most fashionable pregnancies, all eyes are firmly on bump watch and, never one to miss a trick, canny designer Victoria Beckham is using it as the perfect opportunity to showcase her new handbag collection! Although her bump is still small, she has perfected the art of strategically holding her latest accessories at her waist, ensuring that all photos and eyes are focused on her new product!

Not that we need much encouragement to look at her gorgeous accessory collection! Going down a storm at NYFW this week, the bags are the perfect combination of vintage elegance and modern minimalism. Understated yet perfectly chic, these bags are sure to become the ‘It Bags’ of the season.  Here at Fiorelli HQ we are excited to see some of the VB look come through in our Autumn/Winter11 collection. Check out Fiorelli’s Style Notes tomorrow to see a sneak preview of the AW11 range at Pure Exhibition!

Wednesday, 16 February 2011

Behind the scenes of a Fiorelli photo shoot…

It’s almost time for our amazing high summer collection to launch online and in stores, and in anticipation of its arrival we thought we would whet your appetite with some exclusive behind the scenes footage of our SS11 campaign shoot! Way back in September (doesn’t that feel like a million years ago?!) we packed up our favourite samples of the collection, and along with a team of hair stylists, makeup artists, stylists and of course our amazing photographer Theo Cohen we headed to a garden in  Earls Court, London. A little dubious about this “amazing garden” in the middle of Earls Court we arrived and with some trepidation unpacked all our props from the van and went to set up. How wrong we were about the set! There was only one word to describe it – WOW! I couldn’t believe that this amazing house and garden was really situated in the heart of London. It just didn’t make sense! With a huge swimming pool (which, thank goodness, was heated) and a gorgeous traditional hammock it was the perfect scene to show off our High Summer collection.

The inspiration for the shoot was a combination of 70’s icons, block colour, underwater  and poolside glamour. With the collection featuring some gorgeous bright hues, from turquoise to orange, it was all about creating a truly glamorous summery feeling. Having put a lot of time and effort into researching the exact look we wanted to achieve it was all hands on deck to ensure that we pulled it off. Everything had to be perfect! With hair and makeup done, and our lovely model looking stunning (we weren’t jealous at all…) it was time to start playing around with positions and poses that showed off our Fiorelli bags to their full potential.

Much to her dismay our poor model pulled off some incredible poses in and around the pool, despite the temperature plummeting! Our job was to try and keep her warm enough so that her goose-bumps didn’t show up on camera! The price we pay for fashion…

After a long day and numerous bets on who would be the first one to fall in the pool, we eventually wrapped up, both in terms of the shoot and ourselves! Rushing home to get a good night’s sleep was essential, so that all fresh faced in the morning we could start to go through all the shots and choose the strongest ones. After a big debate in Fiorelli HQ (we really struggled to come to a unanimous decision!) we chose the following six images. Enjoy your sneak peak of the new collection! We’d love to know your thoughts, which is your favourite shot?