Simone Rochas, one of our most anticipated shows of the London calendar, did not disappoint. Taking the lines of a Louise Bourgeois poem as a starting point, the clothes in this collection were as intricate as ever. The overarching silhouette was the same: rounded shoulders, full skirts, double-breasted coats and dresses, but Rochas kept things interesting with her use of fabric of different weights and transparencies. She mixed heavier tapestry-like fabrics and embroidery with lighter organza layers, within which could be found spiderwebs, flowers and phallic shapes. One of the major tropes of the collection was her use of underwear as outerwear and bralettes or cropped bustiers were worn on top of coats, blouses and dresses offering a hint of vouyeurism. The dichotomy between the fabrics and imagery of the collection reflect Rochas' own conflict with representations of tenderness and sexuality. 

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There is a certain amount of exuberance in fashion at the moment which is perfectly encapsulated by this collection from Michael Halpern. 

Some delicious 1970s styling inspired by the legendary Studio 54 nightclub came sauntering down the runway which was housed in the opulent Deco ballroom of a Park Lane hotel. Swaths of draped fabric and beautiful bright patterns were all hallmarks of this collection which was inspired by Erté's illustrations. The eponymous designer showed gloriously sequinned short dresses (sparkle and shine seems to be a persistent trend for the upcoming season) some with asymmetric skirts, voluminous hooded opera coats, richly beaded floor-length halters with crystal chokers, lamé tissue Deco prints cut on the bias, a gold and black embroidered ’20s pyjama suit. Gone was the favoured suit of previous seasons, and instead he showed a silver two-piece consisting of an off-the-shoulder top with matching trousers.

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A collection of cozy knits and florals in strong, but limited hues is how this collection can be summed up. 

It is a shift for Lupfer who sought to simplify his line in the hopes that it will generate interest from new quarters. He showed long pleated skirts, ribbed Italian cashmere sweaters, and parka and duffle wool coats made of material from heritage brand AW Hainsworth of West Yorkshire, as well as in leopard faux fur or with faux fur trims. The clothes were accessorised with fur trapper hats and oversized faux fur mittens, fringed scarves, more sweaters, and hiking sneakers. Some embellishment was held over from previous collections including crystal and enamel accoutrements. Lupfer could not get rid of his signature lips either, although they were rendered monochromatically in black-on-black so as to be an unobtrusive as possible. 

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There was an overdose of sophistication at Reem Acra this season. While this was not the most breathtaking of her shows, the clothes were stunning nevertheless and, with the Academy Awards fast approaching, well-timed to take advantage of some old-fashioned Hollywood glamour.

Gone for the most part were the favoured floral elements of past seasons and instead Acra embraced a softer version of the militarised looks with Joan of Arc as her muse and inspiration. Beading was used to convey armour: one gold gown had metal spangles that looked as though it was pouring off of the model, while another dress featured a confection of red and blue sequins and had tiny chains strung across it. Separates were few and far between. Although the focus was on gowns and dresses, Acra did show a cropped top with an open back and beaded push-up tanks with corset-style boning.

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Always a highly anticipated show, this time Marc Jacobs  can claim his collection to be a real feather in his cap, both literally and figuratively. 

The last few months have seen a renewed interest in the iconic Spring 1993 grunge collection Jacobs designed for Perry Ellis, and there was some thought that he might incorporate a reference into his next collection, but Jacobs veered as far away from flannel as possible instead showing a collection that was refined and elegant and had more in common with that of Tomo Koizumi, the protégé he and his stylist Katie Grand helped launch earlier in the week: volume.

Rounded, dropped shoulders and a wide silhouette helped to mask the natural proportions of the models. While other designers this season have seemed to focus on lines that skim and elongate the body, Jacobs played with proportion and girth. He showed cloth coats and capes, shredded tulle party dresses, A-line skirts and crewnecks. Feathers were used to add heft but maintain lightness. Hats designed by milliner Stephen Jones also had an ornitho theme, and were perched on the top of most models' heads.   

The overall result was a collection that was wearable and pretty which hasn't always been the case.

Jacobs' one reference to that Perry Ellis collection came at the very end when Christy Turlington, who had walked for him all those years ago, closed this show in an off-the-shoulder, nipped in party dress embroidered with glossy feathers. 

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Vera Wang has been fixated on a certain type of elongated silhouette for a number of seasons now, and with this collection for Fall 2019, that silhouette shows no sign of losing its popularity with the designer even as she prepares for her 30th anniversary runway show after a two year absence.

That’s not to say that the looks in the collection weren't stunningly beautiful. While black also retained its popularity with the designer, her copious use of plaid marked a clear Celtic influence as did her use of the tonnag - a traditional sash-like garment - that appeared draped or folded. Wang showed precision checked suiting which included trousers overlaid with a pleated or lace aprons. Hints of lace bodysuit were also evident, and we loved the sequinned party dress complete with oversized grey faux-fur coat that revealed a lining of giant silver sequins. Shine on.

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Given the season, we guess it’s only to be expected that we are seeing a lot of emphasis on outerwear and this collection from Gabriela Hearst is no exception. Like Tory Burch’s collection, Hearst showed coats with military overtones. Many were double-breasted or cutaway to display the fact that they were lined with quilted fabric.

Her knit dresses and separates were also noteworthy. Hearst was inspired by Russian ballerina Maya Plisetskaya and her influence could be seen in the way the knits clung to the body and revealed a balletic elegance. The dresses were striped and featured vertical ribbing down the body, while the separates mainly consisted of turtlenecks and floor-length skirts. She included a personal touch by including replica Uruguayan coins from the year in which she was born on chain belts or as buttons. Other standout pieces included a gown with delicate pleating and the Grecian-styled one-shouldered gown with woven black nappa leather bustier that closed the show.

This was Hearst's first collection since gaining investment from LVMH’s Luxury Ventures, the arm of the conglomerate launched in 2017 to focus on emerging brands. 

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An uneven collection from Self-Portrait. We loved the checked pieces enough to feature the entire collection here, but were less enamoured by the combined lace pieces with the uneven hems that harked back to the original aesthetics of the line. Designer Han Chong offers some streamlined shapes including a simple, one-shouldered jumpsuit trimmed in crystals and tuxedo-style dresses and jumpsuits.  Similar to Greta Constantine's collection, Chong layered shiny, lurex bodysuits and knits under dresses to create a glamorous, yet modest effect.

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We love a good pattern and so apparently do the duo behind the popular 90s staple, the velour tracksuit. Pamela Skaist-Levy and Gela Nash-Taylor stuck with their signature coordinated looks (remember how easy it was to get dressed when two pieces were all you had to think about?) and have included every current print trend in this collection namely camouflage, animal print, snakeskin and even a repeated logo in the form of their own interlocking symbol. 

Some of the stripes and patterns come a little too close to that of another Italian brand's, but the easiness of the matching sets from years ago have been updated and modernised. Cropped, boot-legged trousers with button flies or bicycle shorts were combined with fur coats. Only a few dresses in a similar sporty styles were shown: short, tight, high necked with short zippered or buttoned openings. Most looks were paired with pointy-toed, boots but the bags included slouchy drawstring packs, tactile, fur-covered totes and mini waist or cross-body bags.

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While a certain refinement remained, exuberance underlined much of Tory Burch’s collection for autumn 2019. Burch took her inspiration from Black  Mountain College, a liberal arts college that schooled several of the 20th century's influential American artists such as Willem de Kooning and Robert Rauschenberg. This creativity took the form of eclectic exuberance and Burch's runway was full of extreme pattern- and textile-mixing. She also showed sleek outerwear including slim, militaristic wool coats with smart metal fasteners.

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Brandon Maxwell has settled into his role as a designer and showed a certain amount of maturity with this collection of tightly tailored separates and body-con dresses. A largely monochromatic palette was broken up with splashes of acid green, powder blue and bright persimmon. The silhouette was slightly more relaxed for evening with voluminous skirts and gowns that were largely free of embellishment although the waist was made the focal point. 

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Dubai in the United Arab Emirates provided the inspiration for Greta Constantine designers Kirk Pickersgill and Stephen Wong who used traditional textiles In unconventional ways. Because of their muse, modest dressing was key but the designers found ways to add glamour to the looks with shimmering, sequinned bodysuits layered beneath rich, luxurious fabrics.

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Cole Haan Pig Sneakers
Cole Haan
Cole Haan has designed a pretty literal take on the theme. 

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Vans

Shoes seem to be really popular way of commemorating the Year of the Pig.  We have two to feature here: up first is this piglet pink, mixed-textured the old school style sneaker from Vans.

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Pigzby App


With the year of the pig upon us, we thought we’d take a tongue-in-cheek look at some pig-themed fashion and design over the next few days. With all the talk of bitcoin and cryptocurrency floating around these days, Pigzbe has set its mark on a younger crowd with a virtual take on the traditional piggy-bank. The two-part system includes a toy and related app and children can receive, save and spend cryptocurrency they earn while practicing financial responsibility. 

Pigzby

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We featured the first part of this property last week and now we’re ready getting ready to take you to the other side. Literally.

If you're of the opinion that The Ocean View Club offers too many creature comforts or you're more interested in putting an eco-friendly spin on your vacation, the second part of this gorgeous property may be more to your liking. Consisting of caravans and tents, The Other Side is the counterpoint to The Ocean Club's refined looks and atmosphere.

The Other Side is a solar powered "glamping" site situated on a small, secluded beach, populated only by swaying palms, tents, shacks and a salad garden. The property provides privacy and seclusion, but is conveniently close to the quaint town of Harbour Island. The concept behind the idea is a blend of home-meets-safari, tempered with a few conventional hotel amenities. There are seven tents on property: four are communal tents and have a designated purpose such as reading, drinking, eating and playing. The sleeping tents are nestled along the property's private beach and are spacious but with understated grandeur. Each tent has hardwood floors, a four poster bed, two benches, an outdoor bathtub, a walk in shower, his-and-her sinks, WiFi and air-conditioning.

Three additional shacks sit on a rise overlooking the main site. They are modest in size and designed simply. Each shack has a large sundeck, a king-sized four poster bed, air conditioning, his-and-her sinks, WiFi and a stunning view. Amenities at The Other Side include yoga by the stunning pool nestled at the edge of the waters edge, paddle boarding and spa treatments.

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Rishai, Meredith Andrews
'Rishai' by Meredith Andrews

Bermudian photographer Meredith Andrews' portrait entitled Rishai from her series 'After School' was recently on display at the National Portrait Gallery in London as part of the Taylor Wessing Photographic Portrait Prize, 2018.

As the leading international photography competition of its kind, the Taylor Wessing Prize celebrates and promotes the very best in contemporary portrait photography from around the world, showcasing talented photographers, gifted amateurs and established professionals, the competition brings together a diverse range of images and tells the often fascinating stories behind the creation of the works, from formal commissioned portraits to more spontaneous and intimate moments capturing friends and family.

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