Thursday, 22 March 2012

Best of British trunk show: the London Fashion Week experience in Singapore

If I were to choose one of the main fashion weeks to attend, it would be London Fashion Week for sure. Reason is, I find it more exciting and unpredictable, and every season you’re guaranteed to be wowed by one of the lesser known designers (remember Mary Katrantzou in 2008?)

So when I was told that some selected samples from these designers who showed at LFW just two weeks ago (AW2012/2013) have landed here in Singapore and will be previewed at the BOB (Best of British) trunk show in Tiong Bahru I couldn’t wait to see it for myself; and it’s safe to say that the experience was not far behind being in the front row at the LFW show itself- only more exclusive and sans the celebrities.

With models parading and changing from one stunning piece to another, the showroom was stocked with some great fashion that is luxurious and stylish and doesn’t involve a single logo to show its value.

BOB showcased some stunning couture creations from British label
BOUDICCA. The orange dress is on my wishlist already!

HERMIONE DE PAULA's designs are delicate yet bold... love all the
colourful and distinctive floral prints of her pieces.

My favourites were Antoni and Alison with their colourful silk printed dresses (another obsession of mine!) and Belle Sauvage, the edgy label whose recent collection was full of leather pieces and chains but still managed to look feminine due to the super sexy cuts.

One of the printed silk dresses from ANTONI & ALISON... great for a black tie
event, don't you think? :-)

More prints and colours from ANTONI & ALISON. 

Not all the looks were soft though. Fans of edgy British fashion will find pieces
like this BELLE SAUVAGE dress on show as well.

I was already familiar with both labels from my shopping trips in London and needless to say, I loved every piece on show.  But apart from the familiar, I was also wowed by some couture pieces from the only British label to be invited to present at the Paris Haute Couture week - Zowie Broach and Brian Kirkby’s BOUDICCA. One bright orange structured dress in particular blew me away and if I have the occasion (and the money) to buy it, I would have pre-ordered mine on the spot!

More couture from BOUDICCA...

Other outstanding pieces from the preview were some breath-taking numbers from Hermione de Paula whose incredible details and textures -  combining hand-painted prints and feathers - are obvious influences from the designer’s experience working  at Christian Dior Couture and Alexander McQueen.

The list goes on to every label in the showroom, especially pieces from KTZ with unusual prints and bold colours and shapes, and Haizhen Wang’s namesake label which boasts great tailoring and interesting interpretation of ethnic wear which translates in form of the edgiest womenswear pieces on show.

This outfit from HERMIONE DE PAULA looks like a piece of art! just breath-taking
with all the feathers and hand-painted floral illustration... Major crush!!!!

More from HERMIONE DE PAULA's beautiful prints...

A leather and wool collar from edgy label Haizhen Wang

As for men, the collections were even edgier and more ‘out there’ in this sense. No matter how hard I tried, I just could not imagine seeing anyone in Singapore rocking those ELVIS JESUS provocative t-shirts or the BODYBOUND bright gold leather bomber jacket! But it looked cool, unique and true to London-style of dressing!

Menswear pieces were bolder and edgier like this jacket from BODYBOUND

The people who run BOB and the show itself know their audience well and chatting with the exhibition co-ordinator Nin, who is based and London and travels with the pieces around South East Asia, I can see the passion they have to introduce these more ‘obscure’ (and sometimes edgy) labels to people in this part of the world.

Do people get it though? Well Nin knows the market they are catering for, and it does not involve those who spend two hours at the LV island shopping for the same bag again and again and definitely not those who define luxury by the size of the logo. It is rather aimed at people with real fashion sense who appreciate the craftsmanship and subtle detail of these garments where some pieces take countless hours to make and include hand-painted and beaded details.

Some of Kate Middleton's favourite milliner Vivien Sheriff's pieces
were on show as well... intricate details and beautiful designs!

Love this white bow hat!!! so cute!

I usually avoid blogging about high end luxury fashion for I do not wish to alienate my readers who cannot all afford it. But in this case I find that coveting to own the pieces is not really the point of this post. I hope it will be rather seen as an eye-opener to all fashion lovers out there, to be inspired from and excited about all these amazing labels that stay true to their philosophy and keep injecting new life into the mostly too-safe high fashion world.

But if you have the means and a great sense of style, then please go ahead and pre-order your piece to show the fashionistas out there how it’s done!

The BOB trunk show preview at their Singapore showroom (59 Eng Hoon street, #55-01) ends on Friday 23rd of March and will be travelling after that to other cities in South East Asia. For more information and details  about ordering/previewing the collections and any updates, check BOB’s facebook  page.

Beautiful TITTO silk scarves...

More scarves from HERMIONE DE PAULA.