Top British designer Matthew Williamson celebrated 15 years in fashion this September during London Fashion Week. Having become a familiar name featuring in Oxford Fashion Week’s Haute Couture show, produced by our President Dr. Ling Ge, we decided to pay homage to his latest collection.
The magic of Williamson’s collections lies in their perfect balance. The garments’ clean lines and tailoring rein in the explosion of detail and rioting pattern to create works whose understated glamour speak for themselves. The collection swung between fuchsia pink and cobalt, hot vs. cold, setting up the contrasts and balance motif that seemed to run all the way through the collection. The whimsicality of the abstract watercolour designs featured on shirts and grecian-esque dresses played against the geometrical and modern patterns also showcased, yet both working to create a kind of city-tribal yet relaxed look. Freedom vs. restraint, femininity vs. masculinity and sex appeal vs. structured sobriety were all subtly played out through the dynamic between the sharp tailored silhouettes and the vibrant carefree colours and textures.
Cara Delevingne opens the show at Matthew Williamson Spring/Summer 2013
This is classic Williamson at his best. Vogue’s Emma Elwick-Bates says of the show ‘It was all of his greatest hits – those electric coloured chiffons and celebratory clothes fit for the red carpet or deserted beaches’.
Matthew Williamson Spring/Summer 2013
The Central Saint Martins graduate has worked for Marni, Monsoon and as creative director at Emilio Pucci – a natural habitat for Williamson, initially famous for his kaleidoscope prints and colour. Now celebrating 15 years in the industry, the brand has produced a short fashion film in conjunction with Swarovski and featuring Sienna Miller to showcase 15 years of talent, beauty and colour.
Watch the film here: http://vimeo.com/52990623
View the complete collection at Vogue.com here: http://www.vogue.co.uk/fashion/spring-summer-2013/ready-to-wear/matthew-williamson
Oxford Fashion Week is just days away, and there is no escaping the style hype, writes Anna Dewolf.
We’re extremely excited about the Week’s events, especially as our very own Dr Ling Ge, founding president here at the Oxford University Fashion Association, is producing and designing the Week’s headline event, the Haute Couture Show.
The show is to take place in the red gallery of the world famous Ashmolean Museum, and will include a red carpet reception and exclusive after-party.
Photo: Dame Kiri Janette Te Kanawa, world’s most famous soprano in Rachel Elbaz Couture, image courtesy of Rachel Elbaz Fashion House
Everyone involved in the production of OFW is thrilled at the prospect of such a high profile fashion event taking place in the historic venue that is the Ashmolean, and so tied up in Oxford’s own identity.
The theme of the Show is opulence, which plays perfectly off the white marble and classical-style architecture of the museum itself. The show promises to be a dramatic and exuberant collection showcasing vibrant colours, and all the drama and excess of ethereal romance.
The final Haute Couture collection features 70 looks, made up of a variety of established luxury fashion houses such as French designer Rachel Elbaz, Dar Sara from Dubai, and emerging designers, including futuristic designer Pierre Garroudi, Ghori Couture, Project Runway series 3 finalist Viv Whelan, London College of Fashion graduate Nina Jovanovic, and Oxford’s Zoe Elizabeth.
With such a diverse and exciting mix of designers, the Couture Show will be a key event on any fashion calendar, attracting an exclusive audience of fashion media, national press, buyers and celebrities. Needless to say, we can’t contain our excitement!
Expect regal haute-drama from the models and styling, appropriate in a Fall/Winter season of luxury baroque excess and embellishment. The classical statues lining the gallery will be individually lit, setting an interesting contrast against the models as they walk the runway.
There is nothing like the experience of watching a live fashion show: being up close to the clothes; appreciating the detail of the fabric in the different lights, and the movement on those pieces. It’s about feeling the effect of all the things at work during the show harmonizing together, and creating something that takes you out of the ordinary. It promises to be a truly magical evening.
Oxford Fashion Week’s Haute Couture show takes place on Saturday 10th November. For more information on tickets, visit Oxford Fashion Week’s website http://oxfordfashionweek.co.uk/the-haute-couture-show
The former Ginger Spice was at the Oxford Union on the night of 11 June to speak about her life as a Spice Girl, wisdom on overcoming fear and her successful fashion line with NEXT.
Oxford Union has played host to numerous distinguished speakers such as world famous designer Donatella Versace and celebrities from the entertainment industry such as ‘Made in Chelsea’ Star Ollie Locke, who spoke just days before Halliwell’s talk.
I grew up listening to her songs “Wannabe” (Spice Girls debut single 1996) and ”It’s Raining Men” (number-one single 2001, also soundtrack to the film Bridget Jones’ Diary). Sixteen years later, I was amazed to see that the Spice girl still looks 21. In a grey tailored jacket, tight skinny jeans and knee high boots, petite and lean, with intense blue eyes and soft curled bob, Halliwell appears even more attractive than her NEXT campaign.
‘Everyone has fear,’ says Halliwell. ‘When I just started my music career, I had to perform at Hyde Park to over a hundred people. I was so scared that I cried before I went on stage. Then I told myself, I was there only to serve the audience. So I didn’t feel the fear any more.’ To her, every success is a tale of overcoming fear and bouncing back. ‘Have you read Fifty Shades of Grey’, Halliwell asked an audience of a roomful of fashion-savvy students. (Fifty Shades of Grey is an erotic romance novel which has taken the world by storm in the past two months, and is described as “the pornographic Twilight”.) Then she continued to talk about her career as a writer. ‘I wanted to write children’s books. Book agents say that celebrities and children’s books don’t go together. Then I signed a contract to write a series of six books with Macmillan Children’s books and wrote Ugenia Lavender, which became the bestseller of the time.’ Halliwell then shared her exciting experience as a fashion designer. ‘I have always dreamed of designing my own clothing line. I went to a large fashion retailer, they said I don’t have any experience as a designer. Then I have launched a red carpet line and swimwear line in collaboration with NEXT.’
The trick to life, she says, is that ‘failure is a stepping stone to success. There are so many opportunities waiting for you; you just have to go for it.’
The bubbly ‘Made in Chelsea’ Star speaks about the latest E4 hit series, relationships, life experiences and fashion (including Union Jacks!) to the Oxford Fashion Campus (the University’s fashion club) hosted by Dr Ling Ge at the Oxford Union on the evening of June 1st.
Before the talk, in a slim-fit black suit, the stylish star, who can easily be taken as someone walking out of a GQ magazine shoot, signed the Oxford Union guest speakers’ book. The book has been signed by numerous distinguished speakers such as Donatella Versace, who spoke at the Oxford Union two days prior to Locke’s visit.
To a rapt audience of over 100 fashion-saavy students and a front row of Oxford Fashion Campus committee as well as his mother Sarah and close friend Grazia News Editor Emily Maddick, Locke joked about his Union Jack frenzy: “I have this 1997 Jaguar painted in Union Jack. It’s neither vintage nor new. It cost a fortune, and runs out of gas every 25 mins.”
Throughout the event, Locke proved himself to be down-to-earth, friendly, funny, open and, perhaps less obvious from ‘Made in Chelsea’, quick-minded, witty and intelligent. The event concluded with a three-course dinner, attended by Locke, his mother, Maddick and the Committee, at the famous Magdalen College with notable alumni including George Osbourne, King Edward VIII, Oscar Wilde, T. E. Lawrence of Arabia and many Nobel Prize Winners. While en-route to Magdalen College formal hall, young ladies on the Oxford High Street who were lucky enough to have their photos taken with their favourite star exclaimed, “this has made my day!”. Fans from London travelled all the way to Oxford just to get a glimpse of him.
Walking past certain dinner tables at the magnificent dining hall, we heard screams of ‘that’s Ollie from Made in Chelsea!’. The dinner was thoroughly enjoyed by all; for all you gourmet connoisseurs, the three courses were: Asparagus with Red Pepper, Olive and Lemon Dressing; Supreme of Guinea Fowl with Rosemary Sauce; Dark and White Chocolate Tian.