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Style Addict July 09


The Decadence of Couture


While spending an excessive amount on a frock, albeit a made-to-measure piece of perfection may seem a tad vulgar in such financially cautious times, the business that is ‘haute couture’ is still thriving.


Even with his company in administration the show must go on for Christian Lacroix. In a letter to his staff, the designer said: ‘I don’t know what tomorrow will be made of, if indeed there is a tomorrow, but I will do everything to ensure we remain a couture house 200 percent.’ Sticking with the ‘less is more’ adage Lacroix showed about 20 looks with everyone bar the models working for free.


Elsewhere, the Paris Couture schedule included established fashion houses such as Christian Dior, Giorgio Armani Prive, Chanel and Givenchy. As well as the likes of Alexis Mabille, Christophe Josse and Josep Font. Forget lavish presentations with jaw-dropping costs even the big boys moved their shows in-house inviting a select few. Attendees included Cate Blanchett at Armani Prive, Kylie Minogue at Jean Paul Gaultier and Marion Cotillard at Dior.


As for the clothes it was all sculpted tailoring over feminine lingerie from Galliano at Dior, Jean Paul Gaultier took his inspiration from Hollywood icons; all strong shoulders and nipped-in waists with an emphasis on heavy textures, while it was equestrian meets gothica at Givenchy.




Ziad Ghanem’s Walpurgis Night

London based designer Ziad Ghanem also remained low key with appointment only viewings in London and Paris and a couture collection that comprises of 6 pieces. Entitled ‘Walpurgis Night’, the collection is inspired by Goethe’s ‘Faust’ and is the result of a unique collaboration. Bespoke corset maker Ian Frazer Wallace applies his superbly crafted body-contouring skills. Designer Sergei Grinko specially created the extravagant jewellery and embroidery. And performer, model and muse Polly Fey modelled the collection shot by Drama Editor-in-Chief Ram Shergill.

On the collaboration Ziad commented: “Seeing Ian and Polly working together during the peculiar corset fittings was amazing. It was like a form of extreme performance and the illusion was the contortion of Polly’s body. Ian created 3 corsets for each outfit varying slightly in sizes. He explained how most of the time you make a garment to fit around the body but with a corset you are actually making the body fit the garment. Polly has been an avid fan of corsets and has been wearing them for sixteen years so she is able to take a bigger distortion than most.”

To view the collection visit Ziad’s website: www.ziadghanem.co.uk


Hardy Amies A – Z Style Bible for the Boys


ABC of Men's Fashion by Hardy Amies


'A man should look as if he has bought his clothes with intelligence, put them on with care and then forgotten all about them.' Hardy Amies


For all men – and indeed all women who are interested in men's clothes – here is an alphabetical guide to men's fashion written with wit and expertise. Hardy Amies skilful eye guides you safely through style decisions on everything from blazers to brogues to skiing and sandals.


£9.99 for the cloth bound special edition out this September


V&A Publishing



Sites We Like…


You can be out-in-the-sticks and yet be in-the-know when it comes to trendy young things and street fashion thanks to this little website www.connectedgeneration.co.uk We love the image gallery and the ‘get involved’ and ‘get interactive’ elements. Users can vote for designs they want to go on sale – with the ‘winning’ designs put into production and available to buy within weeks. Talk about people power!



Style on Screen


Coming to our cinemas soon: the visual feast that is Coco Before Chanel. Audrey Tautou plays the lead role that explores Coco’s early life – which no doubt shaped her personality and creative ideas in the years that followed. It was certainly no easy ride for Coco (formally known as Gabrielle); the story begins with her life in an orphanage and her slow ascent into high society thanks to her wit, charm and rather frank manner. The cinematography and styling is also spot-on, fashion lover or not there is something for everyone with this film.


Coco Before Chanel is due for release in UK cinemas at the end of July.



JoJo Iles


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