about buying a monthly copy of Vogue (mind you, up to four different editions), watching Fashion TV and browsing style.com. I didn't know a lot about history and although was aware of the most influential designers and "it-things", found myself more captivated by the clothes and shoes regardless of their label, and model who wore them in a runway.
How things changed since then... Admittedly, style and quality are still what I am always drawn to in the first place, but the subject of fashion itself in all its vastness is now a huge part of my life, too. And yes, it still feels surreal. Surreal to receive invites. Surreal to be able to get to "the car park" within about an hour after stepping out of my front door - from the quiet suburbs to the heart of one of the fashion capitals, just like that. Surreal to see collections destined for the future season. Surreal to have this blog even.
So I go, listen, watch and digest, often unnoticed because I'd hate it if it was the other way. Fashion and I are rather intimate, you see. I sneak in and out, do my job, meet old friends and discover somebody new and exciting to fall in love with and share with you.
Starting with my favourite collections of the season... Just like with New York, in alphabetical order, to be fair to everyone, these were not always among the hyped ones, but for me, an ideal example of taste, the taste influenced by the richly layered British heritage and traditions, current world events, art, fabrics and craftsmanship. For me, these are pieces the most flawless and uniquely-stylish wardrobes are made of.
Amanda Wakeley team sent me an invite - a beautiful rose gold and black leather key ring with a line of address on it. Modern, strong and elegant, just like the collection itself. For me it was all about the coats. Oh, how much I loved those luxurious cocoons lovingly wrapped around the body (Amanda doesn't do buttons), cinched with a leather belt and topped with a bouncy cloud of fur. They were magic! Absolute dreamiest winter tale magic. Something Diana, the Goddess, would wear on her travels from the sun kissed Greece through icy Siberia to a ball where she'd change into one of the Amanda Wakeley ravishing gowns - the only imaginable option befitted her divine status.
Antonio Berardi is my long-time favourite. He is Italian. He never underestimates a power of a high heel. And he understands how a beautiful dress can help us, women, feel confident, sensual, strong and independent, all at once. Love him. Very much.
The two looks from Christopher Kane haberdashery-meets-couture collection. An enchanting barely there evening gown for a January outing and a cardigan to use for defrosting the nipples upon return.
And in the Daks'ness find them... The perfectly tailored suits, elegant dresses, sparkling tweed coats and fabulous hats. For a cultivated Brit who feels equally at home in Paris and Transylvania.
Blame it on my mood, the music or my love of a well-made coat, but Vivienne Westwood show left me rather emotional. I admit, you have to pull apart the outfits before you can truly admire the clothes, but if you are prepared to do so, everything, from a bias-cut dress to a masculine yet pliable wool coat will surprise the eye with its tactile timelessness. So rebel against the first impression rule, set your mind free and let your heart do the talking... A bit of study, a bit of fun, it's all nourishing, good for the taste.
Photo source: Amanda Wakeley Autumn/Winter 2016, Antonio Berardi Autumn/Winter 2016, Christopher Kane Autumn/Winter 2016, Daks Autumn/Winter 2016, Vivienne Westwood Autumn/Winter 2016 via Vogue Runway & The Impressions, runway images from Vivienne Westwood AW16, Topshop Unique AW16, Temperley London AW16 & Pringle of Scotland AW16 runway via British Fashion Council