FFWD | 10 seasons of style for Fashion Forward Dubai!

Santiago Fashion December 10, 2017

By Fat Kid For Fashion

Fashion Forward Dubai (FFWD) celebrated its 10th season this October, a milestone achievement for the Dubai fashion community. FFWD was launched by Dubai fashion maverick and FFWD CEO, Bong Guerrero, in 2013, and has steadily gained recognition in the fashion industry as the region’s most “international” fashion week.

In a continued show of support, Dubai Design District (d3) hosted FFWD10 in the newly developed Design Quarter in d3. Home to the region’s growing community of creative thinkers, d3 is part of the Dubai Government’s plan to create an innovation-led economy and to promote Dubai as a hub for creativity and innovation.

Incorporating fashion, retail, education and entertainment on a much larger scale than previous seasons, FFWD10 evolved to become a true celebration of regional and international fashion and cultural diversity. A total of 29 labels showed at FFWD10, both couture and ready-to-wear. This season also marked the first wave of shows from truly international designers, such as Korean designer Eudon Choi and Syrian designer Nabil Nayal.

The education component of FFWD10 involved an expanded series of Fashion Talks – the highlight of which was the live interview with Paris-based fashion critic Godfrey Deeny. Deeny, who was recently appointed as inaugural international editor-in-chief of, is listed by the Business of Fashion as one of the 500 most influential people in the industry. He amused audiences with his tales of life as a front-row critic and gave budding critics sage career advice and industry insight. Deeny’s message clearly struck a chord with the audience who gathered eagerly to speak with the critic post-interview.

I caught up with Deeny during FFWD10. He expressed his sincere praise for the Dubai Government and local fashion community for developing a solid platform for regional creatives to distinguish Dubai as a fashion capital. Deeny commented that Dubai would certainly be able to establish itself as one of the top 20 fashion cities in the world, but qualified this statement, adding that Dubai would never “be Paris”. Top picks from Deeny for FFWD10: Lara Khoury, Essa by Essa Walla, and Uniti by Babak Vosoughi.

The themes of sportswear and glamour noticeably dominated the FFWD10 catwalks: Labels to watch: athletic collections by designers Mashael AlRajhi and Nabil Nayal and stunningly sumptuous collections by design houses, Amato Couture and Essa and the recently established Atelier Zuhra.

Mashael AlRajhi | With the announcement that women drivers would be permitted in Saudi, right to movement has been on the agenda for women in the Gulf this year. In perhaps what could be seen as a reflection of current times, a historic achievement was made by Saudi designer Mashael AlRajhi in collaboration with Nike – the catwalk debut of Nike’s first sport hijab. Made in consultation with elite Islamic athletes, Nike developed the synthetic sport Hijab known as the “Nike Hijab Pro”. The hijab was showcased with Mashael’s latest collection, which merged elements of Saudi heritage and regional iconography with a gender neutral, modern outlook. Models wore Nike Downtowns throughout, which continued the athletic aesthetic.

Nabil Nayal | London-based Nabil Nayal, presented Elizabethan Sportswear IV – the fourth in a series by the Syrian-born designer.

Nayal was the world’s first designer to employ 3D printing technology in his work in 2010 and the winner of many prestigious awards including the Royal Society of Arts Award and the British Fashion Council MA Scholarship Award. His utter devotion to his craft has been applauded by fashion world luminaries such as Karl Lagerfeld, Nicholas Ghesquiere and Delphine Arnault.

Nayal’s particular interest in Elizabethan craftsmanship and technology is apparent in his latest collection. Recontextualising historic-techniques using the latest technologies, Nayal has demonstrated a fresh, sophisticated approach to sportswear.

In my post-show discussion with Nayal, he explained that his work is “rooted in 16th century and I am obsessed with Elizabeth I and the Elizabethan period in general. From my research, I have extracted a set of principles which inform my design work. For instance, the ruff, my use of black and white, sleeves, ornamentation. I take this set of principles and clash it with contemporary sportswear technologies to disrupt the process, which leads me to arrive at new creative outcomes”. And what an amazing creative outcome indeed – over-sized shirts with sleeves slashed and draping to the floor and familiar sportswear silhouettes made new with Elizabethan ruffs (starched frill worn around the neck in Elizabethan times).

The designer’s specific inspiration for this season is the Rainbow Painting of Elizabeth I. Nayal explained that, “a piece of the dress depicted in this painting has recently been discovered. If you look closely you can see tiny eyes and ears, which were embroidered on her gown. This was to symbolize her power and to let those who conspired to overthrow her know not to mess with her as she had spies everywhere watching and listening for those who plotted against her”. Nayal has captured this mystery and intrigue this season through collating spying eyes and ears throughout this season’s collage-printed pieces. Nayal made an interesting observation that “in our modern world, where nearly everyone has a smartphone, everyone has the power to be the eyes and ears. So it is interesting that there is a modern relevance there”.

This season’s collection is particularly special as it features intricate and period accurate Elizabethan buttons and lace. Attention to detail clearly being of great importance to the passionate designer, Nayal worked closely with a crafts-lady who specializes in making these accurate reproductions of Elizabethan lace and buttons. Elizabethan technique was also present in the construction of the smocked garments, which were hand-punched (an Elizabethan technique) showcasing to the world renaissance construction methods.

Essa | Dubai designer and “King of Kaftans”, Essa Walla, made a catwalk comeback this year with his latest collection, SPOILT, marking the designer’s return to the industry after a 3-year hiatus.

Much anticipated and well received by loyal clientele and critics alike, the show was a sensation. Displaying a racier more sophisticated aesthetic, the collection featured brave shapes, embellishment, shimmer and shine..and a departure from the saturated color palette often present in Essa’s previous work.

Essa explained, in our post-show dissection, that his inspiration for the collection was “a fierce, decadent, over the top, Lolita-esque woman”. Dubai, the home of glamour and opulence, has no doubt provided the designer with many a muse. Critic, Deeny, praised the collection for its boldness and “rock-star princess” appeal. Deeny also praised Essa for his “ego and bravery”, an attitude that certainly seems to have manifested in SPOILT – possibly the designer’s strongest
work to date.

Essa plans to launch a new ready-to-wear collection in coming months, and to continue to create the dynamic, spectacular pieces for which he is known, for his private clientele. There is also rumor that the designer will launch an exclusive accessories line next year in collaboration with a celebrated art jeweler.

Amato Couture | Closing FFWD10 in trademark dramatic style, Amato Couture left audiences breathless this season – literally. The show plunged the audience into the depths of the sea – specifically, the abyssal zone that remains in darkness – in a spectacle of light and sound. The audience emerged from the abyssopelagic into the light to be greeted by glittering models, encrusted in pearls and shimmer, floating through an aquatic wonderland, each encased in a gown or dress awash with intricate beadwork, feathers and ruffles.

Amato, the brain-child of much-awarded designer Furne One, means ‘beloved’ in Italian. And beloved it is, by the adoring fans and critics who have witnessed Amato’s continued success since 2002. Famed for staging seasonal avant-garde, outlandish and dramatic shows, Amato continued to amaze the audience at FFWD10; but was the clothing as impressive as the theatre? Yes. Exquisite. Beautiful gowns, streamlined, intricate dresses and artistically constructed coats were showcased each with the signature Amato twist.

In my interview with the enigmatic Amato designer, Furne explained the concept behind this season’s collection of chaotic opulence and romance – the many faces of the woman and her emotional and spiritual journey through darkness and light. Every year the Amato collection is a tribute to the silent strength of women – this year, the focus of the tribute is the women that have fought adversity to triumph against it and rise, phoenix-like, from the ashes. The triumph of this season was most certainly the final ensemble, worn by stunning Amato model-muse, Ayan. Ending the show dramatically, Ayan unfurled in a magnificent shimmering raven colored construction – a work of art that took several months to create.

Atelier Zuhra | Atelier Zuhra captured hearts with their impressive floral themed collection. The atelier magnified the beauty of the models who paraded an endless array of divine gowns and dresses featuring the most delicate of embroidery, tulle, sequins, tassels and crystals. Established only in 2015 by businesswoman Mousa Al Awfi with creative direction by Ryan Pacioles, the Dubai atelier’s timeless creations are a favorite of the Dubai fashion elite.

FFWD10 was certainly a success – a real coup for both FFWD and Dubai. Occupying an entire district this year, FFWD has developed into a dynamic, energetic 3-day fashion extravaganza which is drawing international interest to Dubai as an inspiring, dynamic, fashion and design destination.

Perhaps the question is not whether Dubai can ever be Paris…but whether Paris can ever be Dubai?

Fat Kid For Fashion

Fashion writer based in Dubai with a love of couture & cakes.

London Fashion Week

Santiago Fashion December 10, 2017

By Heather Bird – Tchenguiz

London Fashion Week #LFW was another big hit! Keeping “Fashionistas” and “Socialites” diaries full of fun and fashion. The Ralph & Russo show was hard to miss on Instagram and was posted far and wide by Robert Tchenguiz, Julia Dybowska, Mahsa and Brandon Nejati and so
many more.

The circular run way was avant-garde and impossible to take your eyes off. The designs were stunning and will surely be seen out at the best private parties and the launch of the new Annabels Nightclub in London.

Le mystere demeure in Soho saw the viewing of Stephen Webster’s commanding jewels, exquisite!

This year…. Big is beautiful and all walks of life are attracted to these strong and masculine jewels, they even speak to skaters as well! Amanda Cronin showed up to adore the jewels and catch up with Assia Webster and all of the many other glamorous guests. Nicky Summer and Heather Bird-Tchenguiz were trying on rings and trying not to drool too conspicuously.

The London Playboy Club hosted glamour designer, Nina Naustdal’s high-end fashion gowns and everyone turned out to watch the singing performance before the runway…. Christian Vit, the Holby City and Game of Thrones actor, was photographed with well-known celebrities on the red carpets such as Hofit Golan who made a special appearance even though she had to wear a boot for her broken ankle. She still managed to look stunning and sexy! Liz Brewer had her front seat spot next to socialite Eva Potel, Heather Bird- Tchenguiz and Christian Vit. Panthea Parker looked ravishing and her smile brightened the room. Rhea Elliot-Jones was there too, always there to support Nina and be the life of the party.

Alice Temperley chose to reveal her designs at London’s premiere hot spot Annabel’s nightclub after a delicious three course meal when all our bellies were full and happy, the guests were then able to feast their eyes on Alice’s flowing fashions! Hats off and gratitude to Amanda Wakeley and to the 2017 London Fashion Week team and all of the designers who participated and the attendees who turned out to watch and support our London designers!

The Highlights of Milan Fashion Week

Santiago Fashion December 10, 2017

By Ekaterina Shevlyakova



Fashion Week in Milan has been extremely vibrant and unpredictable as always, full of not only the usual fashion establishment and VIPs, but also of many newcomers. The most elegant and important location, Salone Arengario, in the Royal Palace of Milan was showing all the emerging fashion designers like Vanotti and Colangelo and August Getty was presenting his collection at the elegant Four Seasons hotel.

This years fashion week was very nostalgic and extremely respectful in dedicating tributes to the legendary fashion designers like Gianni Versace and Laura Biagiotti that have been real living legends in fashion. Never has a fashion week had such a sentimental feeling to it. Without a doubt, one of the most memorable moments of this Fashion week in Milan was the fashion show that Donatella Versace staged, dedicated to her late brother Gianni Versace at the Triennale museum. This year actually marks 20 years since Gianni Versace was killed in Miami Beach. After many years, what Donatella wanted was to remember not the death of Gianni Versace, but to celebrate his life and his absolutely innovative and creative genius.

“This is a celebration of a genius. This is a celebration of an icon. This is a celebration of my brother”. With these touching words the show began and it was truly something to remember. First of all, the cast of models was impeccable. There wasn’t even one model in the show that wasn’t well known. Gigi Hadid, Bella Hadid, Kendall Jenner, Douzen Kroes and Natasha Poly rocked the catwalk wearing the new Versace SS collection 2018. It was first time on the runway of Versace for Kaya Gerber, Cindy Crawford’s daughter, who proved on the runway that genes really don’t lie.

All creations had an amazing similarity to the historic Versace collections of the 90s when Gianni was on top. Donatella remade and reinterpreted the main prints and designs of Gianni’s historic collections like Vogue, Warhol, Baroque, Animalia, Butterflies and Icons. Baroque prints on blouses, skinny pants or leggings, long black jackets, little black dresses with golden prints worn with extremely high black boots, trenches, maxi skirts – all this is a big tribute to the fashion of the 90s, but at the same time a totally modern and sensual look that makes women feel powerful.

The main surprise was actually the extraordinary ending of the fashion show. The most famous and glamorous models of the 90s – Claudia Schiffer, Helena Christensen, Cindy Crawford, Naomi Campbell and the former First Lady of France Carla Bruni, united on stage, dressed in long golden gowns to pay tribute to Gianni. Looking as young and fabulous as they did in the 90s, they serve as an example to the ladies of how a woman can look in her late 40s or early 50s – absolutely stunning! It has been a real Golden moment of this Milan Fashion week and a tribute not only to the great Gianni Versace, but also to the history of fashion and to the roaring 90s.

Another amazing tribute was paid to the amazing Roman designer, Laura Biagiotti, by her daughter Lavinia. Laura Biagiotti passed away last May at the age of 73 and the collection that was presented during the current MFW was the collection that she designed before dying. I remember being at the Laura Biagiotti fashion show in February when both mother and daughter came out to greet the guests of the show. By far this collection has been the best that Laura has ever designed.

Dedicated to Rome, her home city, it carries an amazing Roman touch. Extremely feminine dresses and elegant pants made of silk, taffeta and chiffon, Laura’s last collection is a praise to a woman. On linen tunics, iconic “Bambola” dresses with frilled chiffons, structured suits with jackets and broad trousers, elegant trench coats in pastel colors, I could witness the appearance of prints and designs of the most suggestive venues of the eternal City. The main color of the collection is white and tells a story of the hyper feminine and romantic dresses.

The number of VIPs present, especially Italian ones, was really impressive! Valeria Marini, Nancy Brilly, Romina Power, Lorella Cuccarini, Benedetta Parodi, Roberta Armani, Cristina Chiabotto, Carlo Cracco, Livia Firth and the Russian TV presenter, Natasha Stefanenko, who was covering the fashion show for a TV program. Everyone admired Laura because she was extremely kind and humble and very talented. It was touching to see the videos of Laura on the big screen after the show and many had tears in their eyes. It was an awesome tribute to an amazing lady who knew how to bring out and celebrate the powerful feminine side of a woman.

Apart from famous tributes, MFW was booming with important parties and events. The most important, of course, was the amfAR Gala of Milan. Held on the 21st of September at the modern museum la Permanente, it was definitely one of the most important events in town. Actually, the most important. amfAR events are well known for the numerous celebrities supporting it and this year was no exception. The red carpet was literally booming with the internationally acclaimed rich and famous. The amfAR Foundation Chairman of the Board Kenneth Cole (a famous American fashion designer) was drowning in the ocean of sheer beauty surrounded by internationally acclaimed models like Alessandra Ambrosio, Karolina Kurkova, Irina Shayk, Hailey Baldwin, Claudia Galanti and others.

An amazing number of VIPs joined the Italian fashion community last night to honor Angela Missoni and help raise funds for amfARs innovative AIDS research programs. Passing in front of the amazed paparazzi, were celebrities like Andrea Bocelli, Chiara Ferragni, Jesse Metcalfe, Samile Bermannelli, Tim Blanks, Derek Blasberg, Jamie Campbell Bower, Dean Caten, Dan Caten, Hailey Clauson, Federica Fontana, Georgia Fowler, Nathalie Rapti Gomez, Giorgio Gori, Izabel Goulart, Elsa Hosk, Jon Kortajarena, Margherita Maccapani Missoni Amos, Teresa Maccapani Missoni, Natalie Ludwig, Rosita Missoni, Lottie Moss and many others.

Everyone on the red carpet event practically stood still when they saw in front of them the one and only queen of fashion journalism, Anna Wintour posing in a very simple manner with the amfAR Chairman Kenneth Cole. Stunning Karolina Kurkova, in a blue Missoni dress, opened the evening thanking the events sponsors, and introduced Kenneth Cole, who spoke about amfAR’s efforts to find an effective AIDS cure by 2020.

Between the auction and Angela Missoni honoring the most famous tenor in the world, Andrea Bocelli took over the stage accompanied by the vocalist Ilaria della Bidia. His performance was unique starting out with the most famous Elvis Presley song “Can’t help falling in love with you” and following with the famous “Canto della Terra”. Indeed the extraordinary presence of the great tenor Bocelli made this experience unique and added a special Italian touch to amfAR Milano.

Another important event was held the day after the amfAR gala and took place in a less elegant, but super original and alternative ambience. It was the Vogue party themed by Riccardo Tisci, who was the creative director of Givenchy. To celebrate the magazine’s September issue, Givenchy and Vogue together hosted a party “The new beginning” in the outskirts of Milan. The theme of the party was Dantes “Devine Comedy with rooms decorated for the evening as Heaven, Hell and Purgatory. Going through “hell”, “paradise” and “purgatory” were important international guests such as Naomi Campbell, Cindy Crawford, Kaia Gerber and Ashley Graham. The title of the evening and the dress code “black tie or naked” spoke for itself and many models turned up wearing a bit of “nothing”.

To end the amazing variety of shows and events was the stunning Salvatore Ferragamo Fashion show. Ferragamo staged their fashion show in the most amazing and powerful location of Milan – the building of the stock exchange in elegant Piazza Affari. The garden of the stock exchange was literally booming with famous fashion journalists and bloggers. The models were walking on the glass pavement that was founded on purpose for the show on top of the grass of the garden. Leading the group of beautiful models was Bella Hadid, stunning as always in an elegant turquoise Ferragamo outfit.

Very picturesque was the sculpture in the middle of the stock exchanges garden. The statue of a pointing middle figure was practically the “funny” part of the fashion show. Following the event, there was an after-party inside the building of the stock exchange where guests enjoyed a light dinner and a real concert. Suki Waterhouse, the new face of Ferragamo’s perfume, was the guest of honor together with the lovely Hofit Golan and many other VIPs. Once more, Ferragamo proved to be the showstopper and a brand that knows how to make an amazing celebration for their clients.

In this endless chain of elegant celebratory events, Milan Fashion Week proved once more that fashion is still out there – not only on the runway, but also in the crowd of emerging bloggers and new stylists, in the crowd of people who came over to Milan just for the sake of seeing a fashion show. Everything in the name of the one and only god – the God of Fashion.

New York Fashion Week Trends

Santiago Fashion December 10, 2017

By Angelika Bolliger

Summer hasn’t yet closed its doors on us and here we all are desperate to know what we will be wearing next Spring. With NY Fashion Week kicking in in early September we will be preview to some of the best runway shows in the world.

The fashionistas, the music and film stars, bloggers and buyers all dressed extravagantly well will be queuing to see what the designers have to offer. With fashion turning its eye to the streets and to the many talented fashion bloggers and the entertainment world for inspiration we may expect some interesting ideas on the catwalk. In fact the audience is a runway show in itself promoting styles worth copying. One show in particular was highly anticipated. Tom Ford.



Tom Ford

It’s been a while since Tom Ford showcased his collection in a full blown way like a proper catwalk on the runway. Gigi Hadid opened the show in a 90s inspired light pink mid length dress reminiscent of a glamorous cocoon. It sported sequinned long and skinny sleeves, wide padded shoulders and a wrap around silhouette. The show was followed by wide shouldered satin blazers in pastel pink, blue and white worn with leather joggers or relaxed shorts. Shirts and blouses were satin or sequin all in pale shades. Aerobic style swimsuits or leotards where seen popping out of loose trousers rouged at the waist or hips. There were some very short mini dresses or tops aspiring to be dresses so short only Karlie Kloss could get away wearing them in the real world. Never the less they were beautiful in its sparkling simplicity. The clothes looked comfortable and light allowing the body to move freely in them. The trousers, coats and blouses looked chic in a modern way even if inspired by the 90s period. The collection was aimed at the younger generation the one that missed Tom Ford’s revolutionary style in the 90s when he worked for Gucci. I can easily see Gigi or Kendall wearing his runway pieces on the streets of NY or LA. It was a well thought out move as Tom Ford’s previous collections were somewhat serious, sophisticated and a little suggestive with small paddle locks attached to stilettos . They were designed for a mature, strong women who knows her sex appeal and is not afraid to use it in all aspects of the word. The latest one is just as glamorous yet sweet, fresh and easy to wear for women of all ages day to night, if they can afford it.



Alexander Wang

The street smart, urban designer took literally to the streets to showcase his new SS summer collection which he named Wangfest. The show had three venues with the supermodels getting on and off the Wang bus strutting down NY streets ending up in Brooklyn for the last showcase. Public was allowed to see the show which was previously announced in the first two instalments with buyers and editors awaiting the Wangfest in Brooklyn at its final destination. It showed Wang’s initiative to reach out directly to his consumers specially the young once allowing them to take a peek at the actual runway show. Good marketing, yet logistical hustle.

The collection itself was strong, edgy and urban as usual with standard studded pieces. I especially loved the asymmetrical trousers one leg being denim another covered in studs. It looked both rock and roll and chic. There was a bit of layering , back to front, inside out, lingerie over jumpers, off the shoulder, multi shoulders or extra sleeves in unusual places. Cut off shorts were worn over leather leggings for a sexy, off duty kind of cool. He stayed true to his signature palate black, white, metallic, silver and grey. Kaia Gerber Cindy Crawfords daughter made a successful debut at New Yorks fashion week adding fresh innocence to the rock inspired collection. She was amongst other big names like Kendal Jenner and Bella Hadid.The collection is street smart and can be easily worn everyday for the cool, low key, big city girl, off duty kind of look.

Calvin Klein

It was a big departure for the Calvin Klein we remember with simple, clean lines, nude shades and lolita like sensuality. Raf Simon’s collection was inspired by American pop culture, pop art, horror movies, cheer leaders and prom queens. The designer himself complained that fashion is at a stand still in terms of pushing boundaries and experimenting. His collection was an attempt to move us, not please us. I am not sure that the retro cowboy inspired outfits were revolutionary or life changing,
but political.

He used satin like fabric for the bold coloured shirts and trousers sported by Kaia Gerber on her NY runway debut. She made the cowboy inspired outfit look divine. Androgynous looking models wore plastic transparent coats and jackets, others wore dresses and wide capes made of a parachute or army tent material. Some dresses and full skirts were inspired by the 50ties, some felt more contemporary. To me, the show had too many references to the American sub pop culture to become a fashion trend. The collection reminds me of vintage clothing you can find in second hand shops across America. It is a style, but I rather see mostly young people wearing the classic western shirt in a shiny polyester or satin fabric. The collection made me think of LA, maybe because that is where I have seen young actors, photographers, artists wear a lot of vintage clothing and maybe because of the film siren references.

The men’s collection deserves mentioning. Sharply tailored suits are the Belgian designer’s trademark. He has not disappointed us with his cuts and silhouettes. I particularly liked the clear plastic raincoats and a blazer with cardigan worn off the shoulders on top of it. It will be interesting to see where will Raf Simons will take Calvin Klein in the near future.



Prabal Gurung

Like his college designers he also likes to make political statements through fashion. He did not miss an opportunity to address global warming issues which, ironically with hurricane Irma approaching, were very much on everyone’s mind. The show was colourful, featuring a strong sapphire blue, egg yoke yellow and plum pink. Models wore high waisted corsage shorts with gorgeous frilled blouses light as a fader. We saw his signature button around technique of creating a cut out on a desired part of the body by opening some buttons. This was seen on dresses and skirts optionally attached to the shirts.

Beautiful crochet heavy knit jumpers in a variety of colours worn just with underpants on the runway. They could easily become a must-have knit for the spring/summer season with its crochet transparent front cleavage and arms. There was no lack of asymmetrical, off the shoulder, cold shoulder dresses with various cutouts, a global trend we have seen now for a while. I particularly liked the emerald green/ sapphire blue chiffon floor length dress. Ideal for a summer cocktail party. Ashley Graham was one of the models looking beautiful adding a realness to the show, making us see that high fashion is for everyone who is willing to try. The Hadid sisters strutted down the runway wearing shimmering cut out dresses looking fresh and youthful. The show was light, uplifting, optimistic.



Oscar de la Renta

The duo Fernando Garcia and Laura Kim have really injected new life to the the house of Oscar the la Renta. When Sarah Jessica Parker wore a beautiful dress by the designer to the Met gala in 2014 with his signature featured on the back of the dress it sort of came as a shock. Oscar didn’t like it, but she insisted to have it to honour him. Some years later the new design duo decided to take inspiration from that and use the original signature left by the late designer and feature it in a funky way on top of sheer dresses and tops and even a white fur coat. Ironically it looks good, it makes it feel young and fresh and it is a homage to the house of de la Renta.

Models came down the runway wearing denim, yes that’s wright jeans with paint dripping on the sides. The backdrop of the show was a Sotheby’s auction house and the colour dotted shirts, shirt dresses looked very much like live art. The collection was young, fresh and light. A new beginning for a traditional design house who dressed the first ladies over the many years.

I guess the youth is the answer and hope for any positive change in this world which so many of the designers have emphasised and who can
blame them. We need them to pave a more compassionate way for us.

Paris SS 2017 Fashion Report

Santiago Fashion July 2, 2017

By Angelika Bolliger


We fashionistas find it hard to say no to new styles, new colours and new shapes, as if they were offering us a new lease on life. Perhaps they do, they will help us achieve certain goals, build up our confidence or just make us happy enough to spread the love.

Fashion has been around since the beginning of time often creating an over statement with very elaborate tailoring, leyering ,embellishment and fabric sometimes inflicting physical pain on the person wearing it.

It has always been a powerful tool to help define who you are. It can describe what your position is in society, your culture, your education, your financial status or even your spirit.

Dress for success is the motto!

Ok, let’s talk Paris.

Louis Vuitton

La fame français, there is only one.

She is nonchalant, confident, strong, pure and beautiful.

Is it the clothes that make her or does she make the clothes? Whatever the case it is a wonderful union and Nicolas Ghesquiere, the artistic director of LV, has reminded us of
its timelessness.

The models were flowing through the runway, wearing beautiful asymmetrical dresses with sharp cut outs in unusual places, making the collection look confident. We saw metallics, natural browns, navy, sheer lace and polka dotted dresses. There were blouses and 3/4 pencil trousers, all warn with tight fitting metallic, green, burgundy, black or snake print ankle boots for the “I am strong and I don’t care” look we so admire in the French. It was no new revelation, rather a mature collection representative of the quintessential French women – gorgeous tailoring, elegant colour pattern, classic but with a modern twist. I love collections that are not trying too hard to create the shock value and this one proves that Nicolas Ghesquiere is consistent in making beautiful, wearable, modern, chic clothes with a touch of rock’n’roll. This is why he has a big following within the stars and other fashion loving ladies.


A brand best known for it’s IT handbags has shown us a collection for the not so mainstream women. A women who does not want to be obviously sexy. She is more the intellectual type who likes to cover it up almost as a statement and an aphrodisiac. This years SS show was no different. Phoebe Philo changed the silhouette form the more structured military style to a more feminine, frumpy, oversized, back to front kind of way. We saw the classic colour palette; black, white, red, yellow, brown, grey etc. The shirts were oversized, the pants were worn over lace underpants, which were sticking out at the hem. We saw some 3/4 flared letter trousers and sheer pleated midi skirts. The collection was top heavy leaving the lightness to the bottom half of the silhouette. Some of the outfits were accompanied by large, oversized tote bags. Both collections, LV and Celine, showed us two different women yet sharing the same French secret of effortless style for the strong and modern women.

Saint Laurent

Anthony Vaccarello is the fashion rebel who loves to push the boundaries when it comes to how much flesh can be shown. This collection for Saint Laurent is even more provocative than the last, baring breasts and showing never-ending legs. Leather is a key fabric, tightly hugging the body in 80’s inspired mini dresses. Wide shoulders, deep v necklines, bustier tops, mini skirts and dresses.

A metallic gold, asymmetrical midi dress was seen flowing down the runway followed by edgy deconstructed leather mini dresses. Most of the sheer blouses were worn bearing breasts with not a hint of shame. Asymmetrical styles were back on the runway with one shoulder exaggerated out of proportion, inspired by the 80’s pop stars. The show stayed true to its previous seasons with the black masculine fitted suit, pointy pumps, short and fitted leather jackets and a bit of denim.

It was a signature collection for Anthony Vaccarello and the house of Saint Laurent. We may just have to adjust it a bit in order to wear it in public without getting arrested.

Isabel Marant

And now we meet the rest of the gang, the Isabel Marant women, the French label that has sold the French IT girl image internationally. She is young no matter what age she is, she is bohemian, worldly, easy going and sexy, in a fresh, French kind of way. We all want to be this girl. This SS collection was a continuation of the fall trend in lighter colours and fabrics. Pants cinched at the waist, ruffles on shirts, jackets and dresses, metallic shirts, flower dresses, cargo pants and more jackets. Cropped asymmetrical ruffle tops, the hit of the moment, worn with 3/4 ruffled pants made us dream of Capri and La dolce vita. We also saw a lot of top heavy tops dominating the silhouette, worn over 80’s inspired pants. The collection was light, fresh, sporty, ideal for us traveling girls. Easy to wear and easy to pack.


It was a highly anticipated show since the departure of Raf Simons and was the first time in the history of Dior that a women was appointed to carry on the legacy of the house, her name is Maria Grazia Chiuri, freshly arrived from Valentino. With only 6 weeks to prepare the collection, she certainly managed to make a statement. The ‘we should all be feminists” logo on the t-shirts and “Dior revolution” was a breath of fresh air. The collection was clean, contemporary, athletic and young drawing inspiration from the youth culture headed by Rihanna who was also present at the show. There were some classic Christian Dior pieces, however, reminiscent of the Dior we know and love like the tulle dresses and skirts. Chiuri gave them a new life by making them transparent worn over black underwear and accompanied by trainers and a leather jacket. We saw a lot of fencing outfits with padded vests and knee length pants, ready for a duel. The collection was white and black with a few pieces in bright red. Chiuri is a strong women with strong opinions and feistiness, I have no doubt she will always deliver a meaningful collection no matter what big fashion house she designs for.


Santiago Fashion December 5, 2016

By Sheetal Mafatlal


Sari has often been called the most refined form of couture dress. This closet chameleon offers a plethora of styling options, which always make it of-the-moment and relevant in the ever evolving style landscape. It could either be tied with precision, emitting a polished, sophisticated look, or it could be draped in a wildly imperfect style, exuding an incendiary, sexy insouciance. Several decades of Indo-Western fusion have helped catalyse the saris remarkable evolution. Whether you require a pre-stitched version, ideal for an exotic destination, or a colourful  wedding or beach sari, evoking fun visuals, sari have all your looks covered.

I have always enjoyed wearing sari draped in a traditional, pure and unmitigated style. I believe that the soul of the sari lies in its ability to help the wearer add her own unique twist to it, which makes it the most democratic piece of garment that ever was. It accents the right parts, hides the parts you do not want seen, thus making it a flattering piece for all body types. The on-trend net saris are versatile and, if heavily embroidered, can be worn with the basic style drape or open pallu, to accentuate its beauty. The Mumtaz drape (inspired by Bollywood actress Mumtaz of yesteryear) stands out in sheer fabrics like georgette or chiffon. On the other hand, the mermaid style drape works well with a heavy border sari and enhances the embellishments when draped around the body.

Of all the sari styles, I have a particular liking for the timeless and charming sari, lehenga, which has its origin from the South Indian half sari silhouette. The dupatta is draped creating an illusion of a sari pallav. Modern Indian couturiers, like Manish Malhotra, have revolutionised this classic and presented it in the form of an intriguing hybrid, which captures the grandeur of a lehenga and also combines the sexy drape of a sari. Designers across the board have modernised this basic silhouette by using contrasting materials. Highlighting its borders, playing with diverse textures and adding ornate elements like tassels, have all added to its au courant feel. Pallavi Jaishan and Rohit Bal are integral to the revival and modernisation of the sari, whereas Varun Bahl and Suneet Verma, are famed for their modern twist of the six yard wonder.

India is the land of diverse textile weaves, each taking birth from a unique loom, and offering a variety of styles. There is the pre starched Jamdani sari, which is structured and non-conformist; the crushed Bandhini drapes; the nine yards Navvari sari, a draped sari mimicking the bifurcated capri style and finally the simplistic cotton Mundu sari, with its gold border from Kerala. Today the sari is even worn with a bikini, expressing the modern Indian woman on holiday, at a wedding or on honeymoon. Indian designers have infused a healthy dose of irreverence and lightness by reworking the ways in which to wear a sari. Today, it is tucked into a pair of trousers, clubbed with a tennis blouse or even worn with a pair of shorts, also known as a ‘sarini’.

By toying with sari gowns, which beautifully fuse the Indian and Western silhouettes, designers have created another means of incorporating the six yards wonder. Be it one-shoulder or off-shoulder, and at times full surface texturing and beading, the sari gowns have become the metaphor for evening glamour. Luxe labels like Hermès, Jean Paul Gaultier and Marchesa have presented the sari in their own ways over the years. It is no surprise that the sari often ends up becoming a great canvas for weaves: prints, embroideries and embellishments, lending ample scope for experimenting with silhouettes or draping techniques.The fact that one may choose to opt for a pair of sari pants or wear one with a bikini blouse, proves its timelessness and versatility as well as its incredible scope for innovation.


Santiago Fashion December 5, 2016


By Lucia Hwong Gordon

The September sultry hot weather of New York City carried through from the gorgeous summer where many were coming back from Europe or the Hamptons. People were not ready to get out of their beach wear and flowing skimpy summer garb. But the undeniable buzz of the Big Apple had ladies getting back into dramatic make-up and high heels to race around the city for NY Fashion week.




Victor De Souza runway show was staged at the Gansevoort Park Avenue ballroom. The excitement of seeing his Believe in dE Impossible show with cutting edge fashions for male and female and people who like to mix a little of both. Beautifully embroidered garments for both sexes floated down the runway. Unicorns, masked suits, embroidered kilts and billowing chiffon created the fantasy. The angel and vixen moment was personified by Amanda Lepore strutting in a wisp of chiffon and jeweled nipple covers and strappy bikini bottom, followed by a delicate blond in a dreamy red chiffon ball gown embroidered with a fanciful unicorn who closed the show. We gathered for the afterparty at the rooftop peppered with cross dressing guests. One stunner was decked in pumps who flashed muscular legs and topped the look with a blond mane and groomed mustache over cherry lips believing in dE Impossible.


Making my way to the Desigual show downtown at The Arc at Moynihan Station on the westside, the traffic was so packed bumper to bumper that I dashed in one minute before the show began to my front row seat. Fashion veteran, Deborah Hughes oversaw the fashion flurry and gave the signal for showtime! A parade of riotous color, pattern, fabric and textures ensued. It was a fresh juxtaposition of florals, stripes and color. The daring fierce look of tie dyed, crocheted with bare skin showing through was the order of the day. Dangling earrings, cool flat embellished shoes and embroidered bags accessorized the look. The cool and hip look made us want to head back to the beach
and islands.


From there I sauntered up the street to Malan Breton and his show, Sanxiantai, at the Hammerstein Ballroom. Inspired by a journey to Taiwan, brocade abounded for both women and men. The frothy fabric found manifestations topped by leather and slit up to the thigh. Printed chiffon dreamily swished down the runway. The beautifully tailored fringed jacket modeled by Frankie Grande, brother of Ariana Grande opened the show. The brocade, gold and fringed jackets flashed a sophisticated and masculine relaxed chill attitude. Gorgeous Conseulo Vanderbilt Costin glided in a metallic floral gown. Also on the catwalk was Mason Grammer, daughter of Kelsey Grammer. Malan took his bows on stage in an exquisite red brocade suit beaming at all his fans with NeNe Leakes in a sequined gown and dramatic cape. Dashing backstage to congratulate Consuelo and style guru, Montgomery Frazier, who co-produced and co-styled the show. We took an entourage photo with MTV legend, Downtown Julie Brown. We squeezed through the throng and made our way to the step and repeat where Malan was holding court with photographers, interviewer and well wishers and joined in for a photo and hug!


At the Skylight on Washington Street, NICOLE MILLER inspired by indigenous exotic patterns of Panama, she gave a stunning show that never disappoints. Flowing gowns with sheer chiffon and cut outs complimented the body’s curves and movements. The colorful graphic patterning and body skimming cuts gave a sensual air to the spring line. The embroidered and tiered details in a black and white gown, making it effortless to go looking stunning from beach to dinner party. Rushing backstage to congratulate Nicole, friends Janna and Zoe Bullock were there, and we raised our glasses of champagne to toast Nicole.


Vivienne Tam drew from science and the stars in her NASA inspired runway show. She utilized the full spectrum of color in her Spring/Summer collection uniting earth and space and technology of Lenovo/Motorola. The show began with a broadcast message from International Space Station Mission Control followed by the models in metallic silver denim and techo-mesh designs sauntering in with the attitude of Space Cowboys. Houston rodeo inspiration was translated into ruffled fluid dresses offset by embellished denim jackets festooned with butterflies and NASA logos. In the front row with me were, Tracy Stern, Consuelo Vanderbilt Costin, Margaret Luce, Laura Eastwood gave a standing ovation. Susan Shin who handled the PR, beaming from the excitement and assembling an A list crowd. The afterparty at Skylark was the perfect New York venue. Perched on the rooftop amid the skyscrapers we sipped wine on the terrace. Paola Bacchini pulled out her iphone and we took fun selfies and photos. Rose Billings, the photographer who gets everyone to smile for the camera, documented the glamorous guests. Everyone welcomed a luxurious setting to lounge after a day of fashion shows.


All the loyal fashionistas clamored to Dennis Basso, for his show at The Arc. Modern world voyager was his theme and everyone was coveting to own every piece. Flowing chiffon, suede cocktail dresses and pants, and unfussy exquisite details is made for the woman who goes effortlessly glamorous from one adventure to another. The minimal palette of dove gray, silver, champagne and camel and hints of black chiffon painted elegance to the maximum effect. From the standing ovation we rushed backstage to congratulate Dennis and Michael Cominotto glowed with pride. Celebrity and social photographer, Rob Rich was capturing pictures of the international celebrities and socialites grabbing a hug and kiss from Dennis. All making mental notes which dress from the Spring/Summer collection they are wearing to the next gala.


Elegance is always supreme at Zang Toi whose show at Pier 59 Studio was packed and people waiting in line for standing room. Jean Shafiroff, Chiu-ti Jansen and I posed in our seats while photographer, Eka Halim snapped pictures of Zang’s loyal clients, where I wore a classic Zang Toi red chiffon dress. A hush came over the crowd as the lights went down. Inspired by Monet’s gardens at Giverny, his wisteria patterned palette of violet and lavender streamed down the runway. Gorgeous black satin trench dress with violet wisteria lining was breathtakingly fresh, giving the classic shape an edge with cut and color. Zang’s architecturally topped the purple sheath dress with a jeweled collar transformed the look to a regal affair. Gowns flowing in lavender and purple with wisteria headpieces was romance with a capital R. Wisteria cascaded over the shoulders of beautifully tailored jackets and bodices of Loro Piana cashmere. Zang took his standing ovation walk with his model in purple and lavender hand embroidered gown floating down the runway like a Monet dream.

My dear friend, Lauren Day Roberts took me to Naeem Khan’s afterparty at another downtown club, Blond, along with Sheila Rosenblum who owns the first female racing syndicate of winning race horses. A cool fashion crowd assembled to sip tequila drinks to cap off another fabulous day of fashion. So here we are, three brunettes at Blond, celebrating the diverse fashion and creativity in New York!

Unique style LE FRANCAIS Personal Shopper

Santiago Fashion May 7, 2015

‘Fashions fade, style is eternal’.

Yves Saint Laurent

Welcome to a taste of French style in the heart of London. Le Francais Personal shopper is a personal shopping service established by French native Florian Perrault dedicated to helping people with there style needs weather it be a wardrobe revamp, A special occasion, or perhaps a gift for a loved one Le Francais Is here to lend a helping hand.

Offering a unique service that supports anyone’s style needs that may not have the time to go shopping or is just looking for some style advice. We demonstrate our vast knowledge providing each of our clients with not only a personal shopper but also special services including Colour Analysis in order to understand what colours best suit your skin tone, as well as a body mythology so that you can comprehend what looks the best on your body shape allowing you to feel and look your best based on your natural look all included in the same package.

Our services are available for both men and women and you have the choice of what package you would like to go for such as the complete personal shopping experience or an emergency service that you may require for an event or special occasion that you have coming up.

For men we also offer the same services as well as specific options such as Accessories, Bespoke tailoring, Leather goods, and support on the best Barbers in London in order for you to look great from head to toe.

Our French touch is the distinctive factor that permits our clients with the experience of France right on there door step such as guidelines on how to combine the elegance of French style with their own personal charm.

The First Consultation will be done in a location of your choice so that everything is done on your own preferences and comforts. During the first meeting we will chat over a French breakfast that we will provide and discuss what it is exactly that you are after, we will then talk about your colour analysis and body mythology, and draft up a list of the best stores and boutiques in London that will cater to exactly what you are want then Le Francais is off to the shops either with you or alone whichever you prefer.

So if you are looking for a unique and personal service catered just for you Contact Le Francais Personal shopper or visit our website and you could be on your way to French chic.


Santiago Fashion March 26, 2015

 3 lowLui’s is a contemporary womenswear label that combines conceptual ideas with contemporary form. Kiki Lui founded the label after graduating from the London College of Fashion in Fashion Design in Womenswear.

The brand was launched in 2013 after her graduation and after winning both the best womenswear award and becoming the overall winner of “ASOS LTD 100 Collection“. Her clothes run the gamut from ready to wear to evening wear. While still studying, she worked in high-end fashion houses such as Luella, Giles and Vivienne Westwood.

Her background is her foundation in developing contemporary fashion and concept building, and is also present in her signature elements in design details and silhouette, inspired by architectural building.

The label is based on the principle of bringing out the character in contemporary women. At its best, fashion is an exploration of the inner self by clever use of materials and shape and further refined in the cutting and details.The essential components of the label are simplicity and clean outlines, with masculine colours in the details.

Lui’s inention is to create the image of contemporary women by developing new ideas about materials and cutting. Her couture is designed to create a way of exploring modern womens’ character in a way that expresses their individuality .

Last but not least, Lui’s ready-to-wear collections include timeless luxury pieces with innovative designs in which classic feminine shapes and modern structures are blended. The brand represents contemporary women who seek both elegance and beauty. These and more can be seen on



Santiago Fashion March 26, 2015
Christian Dior Haute Couture.

The spring collection, designed by Raf Simons, proves that his inspiration, vision and conceptual perception of fashion are unbeatable.

As a creative director for Dior, Christian managed to represent more than just himself. For him, creating beautiful gowns was not enough: he embodied the very history of Dior itself. Now, all eyes are on Raf Simons as he faces the daunting challenge of taking over.

Simons often trawls the musical archives for inspiration. His haute couture collection was originally inspired by the image of David Bowie. The Belgium designer was less interested in Bowie the rock icon; it was the his protean ability to transform himself that he admires.

“He’s a chameleon, able to reinvent himself but he’s also the materialization of something else. More than a man-an idea.” Raf Simons, for

For the 2015 spring collection , Simons created multi-layered designs using materials of differing transparency. In particular, he chose materials like plastic, PCV, glittery embroideries and the delicate filigree of lace. The effect was sensational. Certainly, this must have been the first time in haute couture that a plastic look has found its way onto the catwalk.

Another of the collection’s intriguing elements were thigh length vinyl boots in varying, vibrant colours. This style of footwear recalled something of the inventions of Mary Quant and the mood of the sixties. This plastic look added an interesting,futuristic look to the collection.

Pastel shades blended with vivid reds and greens in a range of vibrant patterns, decorated with silver and black, recalled the seventies – further proof  of his creative imagination. Incredibly, the show managed to blend the romanticism of the fifties, the shock of the experimental sixties and the space age 70’s in a visual harmony that worked. The catwalk was replete with beautiful gowns, romantic and luxurious as befits the image of Christian Dior.


Zuhair Murad

Visitors to Zuhair Murad’s haute couture show in Paris were captivated by a fairy tale ambience – as beautiful as it was feminine.

Since childhood, Zuhair Murad has always dreamt of escaping into a world of fantasy. His spectacular style of feminine couture aims to present the beauty of the women who wear them in its purest form.    

Murad’s spring collection 2015, set out to create an almost mythalogical mood. All the models appeared to float down the runway like ice queens – princesses from myth and legend.

Each piece has wonderfully detailed craftmanship, recalling the best traditions of Parisian haute couture.

The whole collection of gowns evokes different states of water, signifying purity and a new beginning; some like waterfalls; others like frozen sculptures; others again like beautiful white clouds.

‘’(…) rippling embroidery, pleating in waves around the waist, Watteau backs mimicking waterfalls, whirlpools of tulle at the shoulders, plunging necklines, a swimsuit bodice with a crystal-encrusted mermaid overlay, and, as if that weren’t enough, embellished boat necks’’

Amy Verner, the contributor of

Each and every dress was different. Nothing was exaggerated; all elements combined to create a rich visual tapestry. Harmony and breath-taking beauty are the words which best describe Zuhair Murad’s 2015 spring fashion  haute couture show in Paris.

Jean Paul Gaultier

Jean Paul Gaultier has assumed a pre-eminent position on the fashion scene : not merely in contemporary terms but as a dominating influence on the whole history of fashion. Paul’s designs always suggest a hint of surrealism; these are dresses for powerful self confident women who demand nothing but the best. Often feminine, cccasionally androgynous, Gaultier’s forceful designs can also reflect a macabre sense of humour. His collections seem eclectic, but once the inspiration behind the creative process becomes clear, the audience gets the point immediately.

Jean Paul Gaultier’s haute couture collection for spring 2015 was inspired by the classic white dress of a bride. However, nothing on this catwalk has much to do with wedding dresses you’ve seen before.

‘’The bride wore a lace bomber and tulle ball skirt… the bride wore shorts… and the bride wore blue jeans.’’

Nicole Phelps, executive Editor of

Also worth mentioning is the selection of the models themselves. An infinite variety of feminine beauty was on display: different skin colours and age ranges perfectly  set off this spectacular collection. A bride in Jean Paul Gaultier’s eyes is not like a fairy tale princess, robed in pure white. On the contrary, his bride is a full blooded woman, the kind that does not necessarily follow socially accepted norms, but one who is open minded and aware of her body. The woman he presents knows herself and what she wants.

From the start of the show, Paul presented his favourite masculine-feminine hybrid creations. At the same time, there was no shortage of corsets, crinoline cages, plus a lot of snake skin and satin.

In reaction, the audience, cheered almost  every one of Jean Paul Gaultier’s creations to appear on the catwalk. This speaks louder than any words by critics. Beyond all doubt, the fans were far from disappointed..