Behind The Scenes: A Stylist’s Guide To Travelling In Style With Antler Cabin Luggage

Generally speaking when I’m styling I like to be super organised about what I’m packing and where items are before I’ve even thought about leaving the house, as the worst thing that could ever happen on location, at a shoot or during a live TV show is to be unprepared and caught without that essential item.

Elstree Studios

However thankfully this year, during my run as a stylist on Strictly Come Dancing I have been meticulous with my preparation thanks to forward planning and the use of a very smart suitcase from Antler. Their sleek Cabin Luggage range is ideal for travelling to and from venues with a stylist kit, as not only is it chic but it’s four-wheel manoeuvrability allows me to merge swiftly with everyday commuters whilst packing everything I need into the spacious 35-45 litre capacity. 

In mine you’ll always find a wide range of items from a miniature hand held steamer (a priority) to a kit bag containing an crucial sewing kit, plasters, scissors, inner soles, pens, paper, different types of tapes ranging from brown to gaffer (great for soles of shoes on studio floors) alongside an extra bag full of different sized underwear (you never know what size or extras you will need on set), belts, spare flat shoes (for me!), a phone charger and lots, lots more.

And that’s why a lightweight travel suitcase is paramount – it should be small enough to carry around but also be sizeable enough to bring onto an aeroplane cabin should you be lucky enough to fly to a short haul destination.

For more information on Antler Cabin Luggage or to view the range log onto www.antler.co.uk.

Quiz Clothing launches Christmas party wear collection

It’s pay-day and just under a month until we wind down for Christmas, so what better way to celebrate than to check out all the latest party wear pieces for the upcoming festive season ahead.

Whilst prepping for shows and shoots I’ve noticed a plethora of amazing party wear accessible from all major high street shops and online stores, from Coast’s £95 dress collection to designer hire at WishWantWear.com. However it’s with Quiz Clothing that I’ve spotted a potential one-stop haven for all must-have occasion wear.

These key items below are fun, stylish and above all affordable. Adorn the elegant embellished maxi dress (£69.99) to winter balls or weddings, dress for a girls night out in the brands quirky yet on-trend sequin jumpsuit (£59.99) or impress the family or in-laws on Christmas day with this super chic sheer panel front embellished dress (54.99), below right.

With such a huge variety of styles and occasion wear (PLUS accessories) you’d be silly not to take a peek.

Visit QuizClothing.co.uk to check out the latest styles…

Happy Shopping!

Occasion Wear: Quiz Clothing Limited Edition Drop

Looking for the perfect piece of occasion wear to adorn this weekend or trying to source a gorgeous gown for your prom?! Well, do not despair as Quiz Clothing have just released a brand new drop of web exclusive dresses for spring/summer 2013.

Ranging from striking full-length dresses to cute prom styles the price tags are just as alluring (£54.99-69.99) with other web exclusives online starting from as little as £49.99. However, they won’t be sold in store and there is limited stock so remember once they’re gone, they’re gone!

Adorn the cream lace and chiffon style for a day at Royal Ascot or dress to impress at a VIP or red carpet event in any of the floor-length gowns.

As black and white are huge trends for SS13 either worn separately as stark and crisp contrasts or together for the monochrome look then you really can’t fail. These limited edition dresses are also the perfect respite for a birthday bash or special anniversary occasion for any age.

Team with sky scraper heels and dripping jewels for night or add an oversized clutch, statement jewellery and pop coloured heels for day; it’s all about personal style.

For more information visit www.quizclothing.co.uk

All Hail The Summer Sale…

So summer was officially here (last week) and has since slipped into a weather coma sprouting fine showers and dull grey clouds, however if you’re still psyched for a sunnier climate (which should hopefully be returning soon) then the launch of the summer sales this week should turn that Monday frown upside down.

If you’re looking to update your wardrobe with classic designer wear which will last the test of time then why not head straight to Harrods.com and My-Wardrobe.com whom are both slashing up to 50% off(!) online and in store.

Luxury high street stores such as Jaeger are also offering huge discounts with up to 50% on menswear, womenswear and accessories whilst retail favs H&M, Oasis, New Look, River Island and Warehouse to name a few are also cutting down the price on some super-saving pieces that will brighten up any holiday suitcase.

In these frugal times the art to a great sale shop is not to splurge because everything is super cheap but instead think carefully about what pieces in your current wardrobe have seen better days, and then try to replicate them. Good staple pieces are also key such as workwear dresses or jeans, that will last months rather than one wear, and generic beach wear like denim shorts and bright vests which you know will run from season to season.

If you do sale purchase on impulse then that’s fine too, just remember to pick something such as a statement bag or dress which you know you will wear for a certain summer occasion or event.

 

SS13 Trend: Sorbet Shades

Candy floss tones, ice cream hues and sorbet shades are all the rage this spring/summer 2013 and with the sun shining what better way to get a new season look for less.

It’s not just online stores that are rivalling some of the major fashion power houses, as this season the high street has also been filled with baby pink, ice blue, lemon and mint undertones which are perfect for all social occasions.

If you’re in desperate need of an outfit for an occasion then why not take inspiration from the catwalks clashing pale shades with neon accents (as seen at Oscar de la Renta), or opt for a classic shade with hints of another trend such as florals (a la Erdem). However, if you do favour a darker shade (such as black – another SS13 trend) then up the fashion ante by adding in some interesting accessories such as pastel jewellery or heels to detract from the stark palette.

And remember pale doesn’t have to be boring – opt for ice cream shades for workwear filtering in strawberry, lemon and vanilla or go bolder for evening with sky blues and peppermint greens; just add a statement necklace or cuff for that added fashion pizzaz…

What To Wear To The Races

Today sees the start of the racing social calendar as the Investec Derby Festival opens it doors for a two-day festival at Epsom Downs Racecourse.

Friday is of course noted as Ladies’ Day with a special emphasis on style and I will be there on hand to scout out the most stylish women for the What Best To Wear Style Competition in association with Harvey Nichols and Investec Bank (whom sponsor the event). The winner will receive a £5,000 shopping-spree in Harvey Nichols as well as appearing live on Channel 4 with former Grazia Magazine style editor, and now fashion director for Harvey Nichols, Paula Reed. Therefore if you plan on attending make sure you amp up the fashion ante and dress to impress.

There is of course a dress code set out for both days at the Investec Derby Festival so if you want to take note please check it out via What Best To Wear...

If you are not sure what to wear to the Investec Derby Festival or for that matter any other major race meet event this summer then do not despair as I’ve pulled together a little compilation of outfits and colourful accessories which you can choose from below…

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For those who prefer not to wear a dress why not opt for a skirt and top; try a metallic pencil skirt complete with simple shirt tucked in and a statement necklace for a different take on board room chic, or adorn a floral suit with smart vest or slouchy tee for that real bohemian vibe, just remember to add jewels and sky scraper heels.

However, if you do prefer wearing a summer/cocktail dress then my suggestion would be to pick a trend from this summer (stripes, cheques, florals, neons etc) and run with that as your main theme adding accessories to match. You can even clash up your look (it’s also very popular for SS13) by mismatching prints or wearing similar shade pastels and neons.

For headwear there are numerous places to purchase fascinators or hats in town such as Coast, Monsoon, Accessorize, Debenhams et al, but if you want something a bit more special and know you won’t wear again, why not spend the same amount hiring a designer option from The Hat Club.

And remember(!) if you are attending the Derby on either day to tweet me @stylistatlarge or @EpsomRacecourse – we want to see your pics!!

George at ASDA launches ‘Be Seen In’ SS12 collection

This month sees the start of George at ASDA’s latest fashion range filtering straight into stores and online.

Fronted by brand director Fiona Lambert (who you may remember has been instrumental in taking the initiative to sponsor Graduate Fashion Week as well as launching the Barbara Hulanicki exclusive line for George amongst other projects) ‘Be Seen In’ is a brand new trend-led collection which delivers affordable fashion to the masses.

'Be Seen In' by George at ASDA

I caught up with Fiona herself at the launch who explained the thesis behind the collection. Launching with five different trends the spring/summer 2012 range will start to drop into stores and online at the end of this month following through until the end of July when High Summer fashion kicks in.  Throughout this period every four weeks a new ‘Be Seen In’ selection of items will be placed in store and online so all customers are aware of which key trends are apparent at that time and what key pieces they should literally want to ‘Be Seen In’.

Starting with prints, Fiona has chosen a selection of clothing that includes tribal (with neon flashes), tropical and conversational prints which can be worn as separates or clashed up together: all styles are fun and George have taken inspiration straight off the catwalks and edited down to a selection of astute pieces to suit all sizes and shapes.

The second trend Fiona was excited about were ‘bottom’ pieces; coloured skinny jeans, in a variety of lengths and shorts alongside a selection of prints on bottom halves such as harem pants, leggings and palazzo pants filtering into pencil skirts to make sure that “whatever shape or size you are there is a way of wearing them,” notes Fiona.

Moving on there was also a sectional trend on sports luxe which showcases important fabrics and hemlines alongside graphic tees with slogans and prints.

The fourth trend which was added in centred around colour with in-house designers using a rainbow spectrum from sea foam to jade and aqua, to pastel yellow and egg yolk hoping to help customers “refresh [their wardrobe] with some colour.” George launched their introductory colour skinny jeans at just £10 (usually £14) last week to show that they can still create great products “without compromising on quality [and offer] a 100-day guarantee.”

Lastly Fiona took inspiration from the royal family, namely Kate Middleton’s style but more importantly from the Queen noting that whilst ASDA have created patriotic flags and other memorabilia during her Diamond Jubilee year, Fiona also harked back to designs that the Queen herself wore back in the 1950s/1960s thus creating prom shape dresses which included vintage fabrics with lace prints, shimmer and sheen which are all seemingly on-trend for spring/summer 2012.

'Be Seen In' by George at ASDA

All 350 stores nationwide are set to sell the ‘Be Seen In’ collection as well as online, however with Fiona’s background in design and credibility of the brand and a team of 70 designers across mens, women’s and children’s wear we as a consumer can not only guarantee that by ASDA cutting out the middle man that George clothing will not only produce great quality but also low prices.

“We know where its [clothing] made and the quality, so we can deliver the value to customers,” adds Fiona.

“For me design is unique to your brand and important for us to be market leading, as George was the first supermarket range.

“[We are also] a great supporter of innovative fashion and having a customer empathy and trying to think of solutions for our body ranges such as the body sculpt projects.”

As well as selling clothing in-store Fiona also notes that it’s online that caters to the masses; “sales have risen online and [this is] a huge growth opportunity for us. 90million people shop at ASDA every week but not all stores have all the range, so the great thing about online is you have an infinite shop, and we can give more detail about designer collaborations which you cannot do in-store and hopefully makes us more accessible to a lot more people.”

For more information on the ‘Be Seen In’ range visit direct.asda.com