Track the Trend: Futurism in Fashion

This piece originally appeared as ‘Fashioning the Future’ in House magazine

future 1“The Man and Woman of Tomorrow” model futuristic fashions in 1951, found at VintageGal; House magazine; John Kloss designs found at Blue Velvet Vintage

Fashion is an industry built on obsolescence. As such an obsession with the future comes as no surprise; with a self-set mission to forge the styles of tomorrow, designers plunder the past in search of the Next Big Thing, scouring archives to create the fashions of the future. Somewhat ironically, fashion that claims to be futuristic in vision is often derivative – a profusion of styles from the last century have come to stand for the ‘future’ even while referencing the past. Concurrently, ideas of the future are often used to shape the present and can speak volumes about contemporary hopes, dreams and fears. So what does it mean that the spring 2013 catwalks were flooded with Sci-Fi looks and Space Age styling? It’s time to go back to the future.

Early last century the phenomenon was kick-started by fashion’s flirtation with the Futurism movement. With the desire to break from the past and embrace industrial, urban life it was no surprise that sartorial styles soon came under scrutiny. Manifestos on both men’s and women’s clothing followed, setting out to banish ‘funereal’ black from the style palette and to create clothing that was functional and colourful. Later tainted by its ties with Fascism, the Futurist movement has since fallen out of favour yet through its championing of utilitarian, polychrome principles it successfully foreshadowed the rise of sportswear throughout the remainder of the 20th century.

future 2Futurist jumpsuit found at Leila Hartley; Giacomo Balla’s suit found here; Balla suit design found here

The future was decidedly dystopian in Fritz Lang’s Expressionist classic Metropolis (1927), yet it has had a resounding influence on the world of design, from Givenchy’s Riccardo Tisci to Donatella Versace and the architectural prints of Holly Fulton. Hints of this angular, Gothic Modernist vision have also been found in the work of Tom Ford and Max Mara. Just as Orwell’s 1984 threw a spotlight on concerns about the rise of extreme politics and Totalitarianism in the 1930s, Metropolis acted as a mirror to worries about the industrialisation of society. Echoes of Marxism are heard in the plight of the workers while the robotic enemy embodies fears of the machine age. The film appears to uphold many of the Grand Narratives of Modernism while simultaneously drawing on dark tales of playing God, evoking Frankenstein in the frenetic, wild-eyed scientist Rotwang. But for all its radical posturing and fetishising of Modernist architecture, Lang’s tale is ultimately ambiguous in its message of restoring the status quo and assuaging the workers’ revolt. This leaves a clean slate for current couturiers to project their own meanings onto a world that in the post-Industrial 21st century has become an iconic referent of the power and beauty of Modernist design.

metropolisMetropolis shots, from a piece I wrote for Silent London
future 4Givenchy couture, Spring 2012; Versace couture Spring 2012; Holly Fulton S/S 2010

A world war passed, Fascism was defeated and Communism was Public Enemy Number One when Soviet Russia launched Sputnik in 1957. Throughout the ensuing decade Parisian couturiers such as André Courrèges, Paco Rabanne and Pierre Cardin used innovative fabrics such as plastic, metal and PVC to play out Cold War concerns and intergalactic dreams on the bodies of their customers. This forged a vision of the future that has become an enduring image of the past; these Space Age fashions quickly became emblematic of their time and will forever be associated with the Space Race of the Atomic Age. The style reached a pinnacle with Jane Fonda’s space babe Barbarella, featuring costumes designed in part by Paco Rabanne.

future 5boots-jane-fonda-barbarella-2Courrèges found at Pinterest; Pierre Cardin found here; Jane Fonda as Barbarella found here

A decidedly 60s version of Space Age chic was evident at David Koma’s summer collection, whose drop-waists and patent leather appliqué had the effect of creating a futuristic take on the traditional tennis dress. Junya Watanabe (almost literally) carried the crown of André Courrèges, the grandfather of Sci-Fi fashions whose Space Age collection heralded the obsession with the cosmic that would dominate much of the 60s. Watanabe’s hats were reminiscent of Courrèges’ helmets but updated with spikes – where Courrèges’ were smooth and cream, like the surface of a perfect moon, Watanabe’s were spiked and molded into mohawk-like shapes, perfectly signifying our post-punk, recessionary angst. At Louis Vuitton, Marc Jacobs claimed his beehive-haired, monochromatic collection was not intended to reference the 60s. But combined with graphic prints reminiscent of Op Art it was difficult not to see the connection. A visual synchronicity exists between works by Bridget Riley and Sci-Fi styles; it comes as no surprise that the term Op Art appeared in print for the first time in 1964 – the same year as Courrèges’ Space Age collection.

future 3All Spring/Summer 2013: David Koma; Watanabe; Louis Vuitton

In the landscape of 21st century fashion when discussions of plagiarism dominate much design, true futuristic fashion as ever lies with technology. With the rise of digital currently taking the fashion world by storm (from blogging to live streaming of shows and creating brand dialogues through social media), it’s no surprise that catwalks are currently tech-obsessed, from fabric innovations to Space Age styling. And this in itself is nothing new; technology has always been a driving force behind the fashion cycle, from advances in print techniques to imitate Spitalfields silks in the 18th century to the use of aniline dyes in the 19th century, and the success of synthetic fabrics such as nylon and rayon in the 20th. Topshop Unique joined the likes of Burberry to live-stream their catwalk show this season, upping the stakes with items available to pre-order to arrive 3 months before they hit the stores. With requisite trend boxes ticked – from  asymmetry to Rudi Gernreich-esque sheer cut-outs and panels – they also succeeded in opening up the debate by asking for real-time feedback on Twitter. With the revered arena of the catwalk show suddenly open to all, questions arise about the air of exclusivity endemic in the fashion system and the hallowed place of the runway reviewer; these are questions that will reverberate around the very future of fashion itself.

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Newsflash: Theatre of Fashion at the V&A – Bowie Weekender

va-logo1

*TICKETS NOW LIMITED*

The theatre is a wonderful place, a house of strange enchantment, a temple of illusion    – Noel Coward

bowie vogue

I’m pleased to announce the next date of the Theatre of Fashion In Conversation series at the V&A will be Sunday April 28th at 3pm as part of the V&A’s Bowie Weekender. *Please note the new location: Seminar Room 1, V&A Sackler Centre*

David Bowie has been a perennial influence on the worlds of fashion and performance. I will be talking to former arts journalist and specialist in Japanese culture, Helene Thian, who completed her Masters degree at London College of Fashion with a thesis on Japonism in fashion in the 1960s and 1970s, focusing on the Japan-inspired collaboration between Lindsay Kemp and David Bowie and later costuming by designer Kansai Yamamoto for Bowie’s Ziggy Stardust.

A former speaker at the Costume Society and the first David Bowie Symposium in Ireland last year, Helene’s research was used by the V&A to inform aspects of the ‘David Bowie is’ exhibition. The discussion will focus on her research, looking at the designs of Kansai Yamamoto and the theatre of Lindsay Kemp, especially the influence of Kabuki theatre and Japanese costume and how these were articulated in Bowie’s performances, affecting and reflecting gender binaries, the relationship between East and West, and Japonism in fashion as a whole.

If you’re unable to attend you can still get involved, as the event will be broadcast as a video and podcast on TheatreVOICE – the leading online audio resource for British theatre.

I hope you can make it along!

Theatre of Fashion In Conversation… with Helene Thian: Bowie Weekender
Sunday 28th April, 3pm, FREE but you must reserve a space: please email amber@theatreoffashion.co.uk TICKETS now limited
Seminar Room 1, V&A Sackler Centre
, V&A, Cromwell Road, London SW7 2RL

BowieKansai Yamamoto designs for David Bowie
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Theatre of Fashion: London Fashion Week AW13

I kicked off London Fashion Week this season with my feet still firmly – if metaphorically – in New York with a SHOWstudio live panel discussion on catwalk theatre at Marc Jacobs.

showstudio 1See the Marc Jacobs SHOWstudio discussion HERE

I spent the next few days whizzing between Somerset House, Tate Tanks and Freemasons’ Hall reviewing shows for Fashion156. Click through below for full reports! All pictures from Fashion156.

AshishWorkwear gets the Ashish glitter treatment with high-vis and plaid rendered in his trademark sequins

ekaterinaKnitwear designer Ekaterina Kukhareva gave us technicolor housewives on acid inspired by Ottoman crockery

edelineA celebration of female rulers in a Tudor-infused presentation at a 16th century heraldic hall from Edeline Lee

simulationCan politics and fashion mix? The dubious use of protest movements as design inspiration had me unsure at Heohwan Simulation

Among others I also reviewed the tarot and witchery at KTZ, the grown up ’70s glamour at Felder Felder, and the punk ethos at Maarten Van Der Horst.

This Sunday from 1pm I’ll be back in Knightsbridge with the SHOWstudio live team reviewing the Dolce & Gabbana show, so be sure to tune in if you love a bit of Italian glam.

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Lost in the Closet: Biba

biba girlHistory, in short, is not just about events, or structures, or patterns of behaviour, but also about how these are experienced and remembered in the imagination.

- Paul Thompson, The Voice of the Past: Oral History

Biba occupies a legendary place in the history of fashion, streetwear and retail. In just over a decade, Barbara Hulanicki and Stephen Fitz-Simon succeeded in embedding their shop firmly within the hearts and memories of a generation of consumers. Arguably the inventors of the ‘designer lifestyle,’ the shop has become synonymous with the epitome of cool, subversive fashion in the late 60s. Big Biba, opened in 1973 under the moniker ‘the most beautiful store in the world,’ really was just that. Reviving the 1930s on the bodies of its shoppers at around the same time that Cabaret was reviving it in movie theatres, it epitomised an affordable elegance and a timeless chic with a hefty dose of kitsch thrown in for good measure. Art Deco fantasies were enacted among giant mushrooms, Egyptian-style changing rooms and lashings of leopard print. And if that wasn’t enough there were always the flamingos on the roof. I have been obsessed with Biba for as long as I can remember, mainly due to a green dress owned by my mother, and spurred on by reading Barbara Hulanicki’s autobiography as a teenager.

biba dress greenMy mother’s Biba dress
biba dress labelMy other Biba ensemble (it comes with wide-leg trousers) from one of Liz Tregenza‘s eBay sales, formerly belonged to Naomi Thompson. Hulanicki said it was one of her favourite tops… Biba label on my mother’s dress

The dress lingered in the background of my childhood as a reminder of my mother’s exotic life before I was born; its extravagance mimicked the contents of our dressing up box, yet this was far too precious to be considered a plaything. The heaviness of the soft towelling complimented the rich emerald green colour, and the luxurious medieval sleeves and gathered shoulders exemplify the historical decadence that Hulanicki’s designs were famed for in the late 60s and early 70s. The dress has a varied history of being worn by many people, as evidenced by the alterations: taken up by shorter friends, stitched down the front by friends for whom modesty prevailed; every stitch marking a new wearer imprinting their story for future generations. The current exhibition on Barbara Hulanicki in Brighton showcases a number of Biba pieces, but it was the catalogue from an earlier exhibition – Biba: The Label, The Lifestyle, The Look in Newcastle in the mid 90s – that helped me to date my mum’s dress to 1972.

MumMy mother (c. 1961 and 1963); Sitting on a car bonnet in 1966/67

I’m not alone in my devotion to Biba. Many former customers – and those of us too young to have seen the stores – are enamoured with the brand as a lost snapshot of British retail magic. Consistent attempts to revive the brand in recent years have fallen on deaf ears – people inherently know that no one will truly be able to recreate the phenomenon – a sentiment also felt in the furore over the Ossie Clark relaunch. It’s interesting in this respect that the relaunch model which works in Paris doesn’t seem to work so well in London – possibly because we feel passionately that these brands were part of the democratising process of fashion and we don’t want to see them usurped by high end prices or low-end retail environments. The egalitarian nature of British street wear seems at odds with the Parisian model of fashion Houses continuing after their creator’s death or retirement; something that couture labels such as Hardy Amies seem to have less of a problem adjusting to.

biba badgeStyle sleuth: A Biba badge owned by my mother (and now by me), and the same badge featuring in a Nova fashion shoot, March 1971 (on the model’s hat)

Yet another failed revival from the ‘Swinging Sixties’ was Nova magazine, which relaunched in 2000 and subsequently folded the following year. Correlations between Biba and Nova are manifold. Aesthetic similarities exist in the use of shared photographers such as Sarah Moon and Helmut Newton (the Biba mail order catalogue, when launched, was designed to resemble a fashion spread from Nova), and the short life span that each enjoyed also connects them: Nova only existed for ten years in its initial incarnation. But more than the facts of their existence, it is the way that these items are passionately remembered by customers and readers alike that forges an indelible bond between them.

nova 1Shoot in Nova, March 1972
nova 2Left and centre: Shoot in Nova from March 1972; right: shoot in Nova featuring Biba turban and dress (on the left), February 1972

Biba has come to symbolise the meritocracy that the sixties allegedly gave birth to, with clientele including not only the working class ‘Biba girl,’ but also celebrities such as pop stars and actresses and even young aristocrats. Debate rages over whether the clothing was as affordable as we are led to believe (contemporary reports in trade magazines Drapers’ Record and Men’s Wear both dispute this), but when Biba launched their mail order catalogues in 1968 the system was truly egalitarian in its extension of urban street fashion to regional and suburban areas.

seamlessI was recently lucky enough to meet Barbara Hulanicki herself at the launch of her new book. I was somewhat starstruck, as you can see from my ‘rabbit in headlights’ expression

My clothes have soul, emotion goes into them in the design, and they are picked for emotional reasons. This is their impact.

-       Hulanicki, in British Clothing Manufacturer, December 1969

Personal testimonies are a big part of Biba exhibitions, featuring at the current show in Brighton and Biba: The Label, The Lifestyle, The Look in 1993 (the fact that these were both successful outside of London highlights the success of the mail order business). The predisposition towards emotional hyperbole is reflected in Hulanicki’s autobiography, dedicated to ‘All Optimists, Fatalists and Dreamers,’ with a tendency to anthropomorphise the clothing, using a lexicon of compassion that has resonated with Biba consumers throughout the decades.

A machine cannot imitate the magic a human being can inject into a dress. You can make a sample in the workroom that is simple and has soul. When it comes back to you from a manufacturer it may seem identical but lack any feeling. I would pat and talk to a rail of dresses to put some life into them. It was amazing what a difference this made.

- Barbara Hulanicki in her autobiography, From A to Biba (1983)

Biba 3Biba and Beyond exhibition in Brighton

While Hulanicki situates the financial success of Biba purely within the sphere of sentiment, it can’t be denied that the Biba stores developed sophisticated technological and promotional strategies that were more likely the root of its success, along with the simple recipe of having a great product. It was heralded in trade journals as a retail phenomenon in terms of store interior, selling techniques (or lack of), and merchandising. In 1974 Drapers’ Record ran a feature on the advanced technology (“the first of its kind in Britain”) that the store used to achieve “rapid analysis of fashion trends.” And the proliferation of celebrities such as Cathy McGown wearing the clothes has been hailed as an early example of product placement. That Biba is perpetually cited as the first ‘designer lifestyle brand’ also demonstrates an understanding of marketing and brand awareness that was pretty ahead of its time.

The infamous Biba baked beans; the Biba floor at Big Biba. Both from Welcome to Big Biba by Steven Thomas and Alwyn Turner. I recently interviewed Alwyn Turner at the V&A, you can listen to the full conversation here at theatreVOICE

Biba is a poignant example of the place that fashion and clothing can inhabit within emotional memory. For many people their Biba items are stashed away in a personal treasure trove, beloved heirlooms waiting to be passed to future generations. When Big Biba closed its doors in 1975 the boom of the ‘Swinging Sixties’ had morphed into a period of high inflation with industrial strikes, the three day week and increased consumer prices following the onset of decimalisation. Encapsulating such a fleeting moment, Biba has become a very personal and significant recollection for many women, a crucial reference point to their teenage and young adult lives, to the extent that it is not unknown for people to name their pets, and even children, after the store, as Hulanicki recounts in her autobiography. Clothing – perhaps more than any other form of material culture – is central to the lived experience of most people due to its proximity to the body. This is nowhere more evident than in the memories of successive generations of Biba fans, myself included, as passed down through my mother’s dress.

Biba 1Biba jacket; visiting Biba and Beyond in Brighton with Kerry of Yours Truly and Kelly-Marie of A Harem of Peacocks
Biba 2Biba and Beyond exhibition in Brighton

Biba and Beyond is on at Brighton Museum & Art Gallery until April 14th.

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No People Like Show People: Professor Jingles

JIngles 2Professor Jingles with his hand-crafted puppets

Over the summer my brother and I made a short film about the man who was once Britain’s youngest Punch and Judy performer: Professor Jingles. He was a fixture of our childhood growing up by the sea, and I’d also come across his puppets on holiday in Sicily at the International Museum of Marionettes in Palermo. I had been keen to speak to him about his life as an entertainer for a long time, and when he was featured in the 350th anniversary of Mr Punch exhibition at the V&A’s Museum of Childhood earlier this year I knew I should put it off no longer.

jingles 5That’s the way to do it! My brother Toby and I filming in Lowestoft; Professor Jingles with his first home-made Punch puppet in the 1950s

When we returned to Kessingland to interview Professor Jingles we were met by a charismatic and very dapper gentlemen and his glamorous wife Dorothy (who creates the clothing for the puppets he makes). We were lucky enough to be treated to a host of inspirational stories from a man who has spent 6 decades performing with puppets and entertaining crowds. I learnt a lot that day, from the history of Punch and Judy to how he was influential in improving the sartorial standards of performers. It was also a great excuse to wear my trusty seafaring dress from the Rodnik Band‘s Cod Save the Sea collection. Are you sitting comfortably? Then I’ll begin…

Beside the Seaside with Professor Jingles. By Amber and Toby Butchart, 2012

Far from an obsolete folk art, puppets are still making headlines today, whether it’s from their appropriation by huge corporations or their use as a marketing tool by fashion brands (Missoni/Target). Shortly after I interviewed Professor Jingles, Dolce and Gabbana showed their S/S 2013 collection which drew heavily on the Sicilian heritage of Domenico Dolce. While some aspects of the collection were undeniably problematic for a global audience, it’s clear that a celebration of Sicilian heritage was the key message; the designs also incorporated traditional Sicilian ceramics and motifs of the carrettu sicilianu (horse drawn carts) that are particular to the island.

D&G puppetsSicilian puppet theatre in the designs of Dolce and Gabbana S/S 2013

What interested me the most was the incorporation of Sicilian puppet theatre into their designs. The marionette tradition in Sicily has been designated as one of the world’s ‘Masterpieces of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity’ by UNESCO, which makes it even more significant that Professor Jingles’ puppets are on display at the International Museum of Marionettes in Palermo. An important part of folk culture stretching back to the 15th century, the shows enact medieval tales and legendary events using string puppets that stand up to a metre tall. While they lacked some of the anarchic spirit of Mr Punch – the stories were often used to uphold the feudal hierarchy and venerate the nobility – they could be just as violent, with limbs and heads able to dislocate during frantic fight scenes. They reached a crescendo of popularity in the mid-19th century, just as Punch and Judy were drawing their biggest crowds on the beaches of Britain.

puppets
Sicilian marionettes and backdrops from Sicily GuideDolce and Gabbana S/S 2013
BLOG Beside the Seaside with Professor Jingles: illustrated by Rob Flowers
dolce-ss-13Dolce and Gabbana S/S 2013 was an homage to the Sicilian heritage of Domenico Dolce, but is in part also reminiscent of the deck chairs found on British beaches
Jingles 3Percy Press, mentor to Professor Jingles, commemorated at the Actor’s Church in Covent Garden; Professor Jingles with his handiwork
Jingles 1
jingles 4In the puppet workshop

If you’re keen to see more, Mr Punch’s birthday is celebrated in Covent Garden every year in St. Paul’s Churchyard, also known as the Actor’s Church. And for puppet commissions I highly recommend you check out Professor Jingles’ website.

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Newsflash: Theatre of Fashion at the V&A – Alwyn Turner

The theatre is a wonderful place, a house of strange enchantment, a temple of illusion    – Noel Coward

I’m pleased to announce the next date of the Theatre of Fashion In Conversation series at the V&A Theatre and Performance Galleries will be Friday 7th December at 7pm.

In conjunction with the current Halfway to Paradise: The Birth of British Rock, Photographs by Harry Hammond exhibition I will be talking to writer Alwyn Turner, author of the accompanying book. Alwyn’s work covers a diverse range of interests from pulp fiction to fashion and rock & roll with an emphasis on the cultural, social and political history of post-War Britain, including two illustrated tomes on Biba, social histories of the 1970s, 80s and 90s and a biography of Daleks creator Terry Nation.

If you’re unable to attend you can still get involved, as the event will be broadcast as a video and podcast on TheatreVOICE – the leading online audio resource for British theatre.

If that wasn’t reason enough to head to South Ken on the evening of the 7th, the V&A’s Raphael Gallery is hosting Fashion in Motion. This month sees the Fashion Fringe Award-winning design duo Fyodor Golan showing highlights from their collections in four free catwalk shows. Booking is essential, see HERE for more info.

I hope you can make it along!

Theatre of Fashion In Conversation… with Alwyn Turner
Friday 7th December, 7pm, FREE but you must reserve a space: please email amber@theatreoffashion.co.uk
Theatre and Performance Galleries, V&A, Cromwell Road, London SW7 2RL

Billy Fury at Wembley (1962) and Shirley Bassey at the London Palladium (1963) photographed by Harry Hammond from the V&A collection
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Newsflash: Recommendations for Autumn

Close up of print from a 1970s Jonathan Logan blouse

Well it’s that time of year; Halloween is over, fireworks are planned, and all that’s left to see you through to Christmas is the promise of mulled wine at the recession-friendly Christmas party. But fear not! As I come laden with top recommendations for the misty days and lengthening evenings of November.

Vogue covers 1 and 3 from A Sip of Sarsaparilla

First up, next Friday the V&A are hosting a fabulous conference entitled Hidden in Plain Sight: The Art of Hollywood as part of the Hollywood Costume exhibition. Unless you’ve been living in a ditch for the past couple of months the Hollywood Costume show should be well on your radar, with show-stoppers ranging from Dorothy’s ruby slippers to the Ming the Merciless ensemble there really is something for everyone. Not to mention the enormously innovative exhibition design that truly brings the subject matter to life.

Chaplin’s Little Tramp costume from The Circus; the famed ruby slippers

The conference will bring together international Hollywood costume designers with exhibition curator Professor Deborah Nadoolman Landis to explore many areas of costume design, from the role UK art schools have played in creating designers for Hollywood to the unique design of the exhibition itself. The panels will feature Oscar winner Lindy Hemming and a host of other luminaries including costume and creature designer Vin Burnham. Hope to see you there!

Hidden in Plain Sight: The Art of Hollywood, Friday 9th November at the Victoria & Albert Museum from 10 – 17.15. You can see the full programme HERE.

Book your tickets RIGHT HERE!

Hollywood Costume: Addams Family, Scarlett O’Hara

Good news for anyone who missed the September release of the brilliant biopic Diana Vreeland: The Eye Has to Travel is that as of October 29th it’s out on DVD. The story takes the form of a chronological journey through Vreeland’s life from Belle Époque Paris to New York in the 70s and 80s with lashings of hedonism and glamour thrown in for good measure. It charts her incredible career, starting out at Harper’s Bazaar, going on to Editor-in-Chief at Vogue and finally consultant to the Costume Institute at the MET where she inaugurated the concept of the fashion exhibition as we know it today (albeit with slightly less historical accuracy and slightly more high drama).

Diana Vreeland: a fellow turban-aficionado

Vreeland herself never let the truth get in the way of a good story (while that phrase could have been coined for her she preferred the term ‘faction’), and her stories have become part of the myth surrounding her. The blurring of life and work, style with substance and her quotable bon mots (“the best thing about London is Paris”) all appear in abundance throughout the film. As a documentary the film has been criticised by some for not paying enough attention to Vreeland’s questionable parenting, but as a portrait of a bona fide fashion legend crammed full of beautiful imagery and memorable quotes it can’t be beaten. It could also be the case that the closeness of the director – Vreeland’s granddaughter-in-law, Lisa Immordino Vreeland – to the Vreeland family may have put her off from delving into these murkier waters.

Anyone who is a fan of Iris Apfel or the late Anna Piaggi and Isabella Blow will adore this look at one of fashion history’s true innovators and most original thinkers and dressers. Diana Vreeland: The Eye Has to Travel is hugely inspiring and is a must-see for anyone interested in the world of fashion and style. The DVD also comes complete with added Vreelandisms in the form of deleted scenes.

Nab yourself a copy HERE!

Finally, as of 20th November the Breese Little gallery in Clerkenwell will be hosting the show Forget Nostalgia – A Little Theatre of Self exploring photography’s ability to trap and record time by recreating Victorian photographs. A solo show by Clarisse d’Arcimoles, she will be reconstructing a local photographer’s studio from a century ago and using a variety of styles, characters and backdrops to encourage the viewer to follow the historical photographic journey of women and their victories of emancipation.

Having studied Set Design for Performance before her MA in Photography at Central Saint Martins, d’Arcimoles’ projects fuse her two interests by creating works that are staged specifically for the camera, exploring ways of documenting the performance of art itself.

Forget Nostalgia – A Little Theatre of Self at the Breese Little gallery from 20th November – 19th December.

Discover more HERE and HERE, and especially the Day by Day documenting.

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