London Fashion Weekend Diary AW16/17
Following on from my last interview with Gal Danon, Danon Jewellery Designer & Co-owner, I now want to share with you our diary of the fantastic LFWend event we attended together back in September.
As you may know Danon Jewellery is increasingly becoming one of the most sought after and uniquely hand crafted jewellery brands in the UK. We felt that attending this event would give us an insight, inspiration and experience of the fashion world and brand presence in London. I didn’t really know what to expect – I don’t know about you but I always used to think of comical scenes of Eddy and Patsy from Ab-Fab when I heard of LFW.
Day One – Friday 22nd September
I arrived the day before the event so that I had time to catch up with Gal properly and browse the stores nearby. I stayed at the Sloane Square Hotelwhich was a perfectly adequate ‘cosy’ single room and ideally located for the venue of the LFW event at the Saatchi Gallery, in fact it was minutes walk from here and next to the tube too – perfect for me. I also love this area of King’s Road and Chelsea, although busy, it feels slightly more refined and people seem more polite and forgiving. The shops and restaurants are really nice quality around here too and all on the doorstep of the hotel, a combination of high-end, mid-range and independents on the same road.
I met Gal in the afternoon after I had checked in to the hotel – we had a dash around some of the local stores and chatted away about the new collection which had just been launched. We also had our radars out for a new handbag each and found ourselves finding exactly what we were looking for in two very special stores, Maje and Orla Kiely…well it would be rude not to buy a handbag or two, when in London and all that!
We were really excited about the following day as it was our first time attending this event we didn’t really know what to expect and looked forward to seeing even more fashion and inspiration.
Later on after we had walked and ‘shopped til we dropped’ we stopped for dinner at Comptoir Libanaisse (and a few cocktails). After a great meal and discussing the interview Q&A I walked back to the hotel to have an early night, the square was really buzzing by now with people outside bars (see below) and the restaurants were so bustling. It had a real holiday/Friday night atmosphere – We were very sensible though and had an early night to reserve our energy for the next day
Day 2 – Saturday 23rd September
At 9AM we walked to the Saatchi Gallery where we were met with a very long queue (already) – fortunately we had our Luxe tickets and were able to walk straight in where we were met by friendly security and given our Luxe Passes. The tickets for this event have different levels and we were so lucky as ours enabled us to skip the queue and use the VIP Luxe Lounge too, we felt very special and looked after.
We checked in to the Luxe Lounge which was on the top floor, it was very welcoming and we were given our exciting goody bags which were designed by the fashion designer, Sophia Webster. They were very pretty and contained samples of food snacks, tea, coffee, make up products, fabric tattoos and more.
After we had giddily scanned our goody bags and taken a few ‘necessary selfies’ we journeyed through the sale and sample rooms. First off we looked around the jewellery and accessories floor, in here we found a really eclectic selection of new and established designers with stands selling their collections, some of them had discounts to offer. They were all so interesting to see and just some our favorites were: Chupi Jewellery (see the gorgeous raspberry leaf piece below), Jane Carr Scarves, Bell & Fox Handbags, Swell Bottles, Baia Bags and Rosie Fortescue Jewellery (The reality TV show ‘Made in Chelsea’ cast member – she was there in flesh too!). Gal purchased a pair of Rosies ‘Huggy Earrings’ which are very pretty and a current sought after style. I wanted to buy everything and the stands were set out very neatly and it was so easy to look at things without feeling overwhelmed and pressured. It was friendly and approachable, most of all it wasn’t really crowded at all.
Time for a wander around the clothing and shoe halls next where we found a variety of mid to high-end designers and sample sales. The shoes really caught my eye, we saw a lot of plush velvet designs, colourful pompom sandals and some seriously stylish leather boots and brogues. This was an ideal way of discovering more new brands and style inspiration. Here we also found hair and make up demonstrations by Maybelline and Tony and Guy, it was a fun upbeat atmosphere with a great purchase system where you pick the item you want to buy and the person on the stand sends you off to the main tills which were dotted around to pay, you then take the receipt to the stand to collect your items, it didn’t involve long queues and congestion on the stands, I thought it was an extremely well organised system. I then found a very practical piece for myself from a designer called Paisie London – a black ‘coatigan’ which is a long length with a fine rib knit. It is so cosy yet effortlessly stylish, I knew it would be perfect to wrap myself up in on those cold winter days and evenings, they even had a fantastic show discount offer. I was really pleased with my purchase and to discover another new label to watch. The selection of clothing was really impressive and I loved the way it varied from mid-high end and a mixture of seasons too.
We had been wandering around for a while and decided to check back into our exclusive Luxe Lounge where we took the weight off our feet and had a little liquid refreshment, we then wandered out to have a quick lunch on the Kings Road at Le Pain Quotidien where we had some simple wholesome food to replace our energy levels for the afternoon events ahead.
After lunch once we were back at the venue, the time had arrived for the catwalk show and we made our way into the hall where it was being held. We had front row seats and it seemed a lot more close up and intimate than I had imagined. We sat and waited in anticipation for the show to start all ready with our phones to video and take essential photos for our Social Media channels. First the presenter came on, a very familiar face (who happens to be my niece, Laura Jackson) in a beautiful red dress and introduced the brand, she had some banter with the audience and then left the catwalk when the music started and all the models appeared and strutted their stuff. It was a collection of a variety of designer brands including Isabel Marant, Peter Pilotto, Galvin, Alexander Wang, Victoria Beckham to name a few all under one online fashion retailer called Avenue 32.
It was really great to see the colours, textures and patterns. There is a sense of a really big combination of trends including, velvet, lace, sequins, frills, bold linear and floral patterns as well as delicate florals, all really wearable and feminine too. After the show we met Laura for a quick catch up in the Pom Bar (Pommery Champagne) upstairs, here we had a drink and a chat about the show, she asked if we wanted to see a second show straight after that she could gain us access into – this time a brand which is a bit wacky and ‘out there’ called Sibling London. We were very excited to have another opportunity to see another show and jumped at the chance.
This time we were chaperoned backstage where it was all very busy and exciting and through a different door into the show hall. We sat on the back row but felt we could see very well as we were elevated this time. The atmosphere and build up was very buzzy, we were so happy to be there and waited with baited breath for what was to come. The show was introduced by a male presenter Jack Guiness who had a little banter and described the designers as being bright, playful and also being worn by their famous fans including Beyoncé, Mariah Carey, Pharrell, Rita Ora, Daisy Lowe, Laura Bailey, Bella Freud, Noel Fielding, Chris Brown, 1D’s Louis Tomlinson and Hu Bing. The show started with big loud beats of music and as the models walked down the spectators were so excited and wow we even heard a few screams and screeches from both sexes (especially when the male model walked passed in his open-style jacket-see below)! Although we had been told it was going to be good fun we didn’t quite expect all the bright colours, helmets, dressing gowns and boxing gloves?! I thought the bright splashes of colours were brilliant and it was interesting to see the purple featured quite a lot, a colour I feel will be big again soon this and next season. The finale was superb, all the models came on to a dance version track of Milkshake by Kelis – it was so vibrant, happy and upbeat, we enjoyed this so much and were very lucky to have the invitation to an extra show like this (thanks Laura ;)).
After the excitement of the show it was time for me to sadly leave and head home on the train back up to ‘Happy Harrogate’. It was an incredible experience, one I will not forget and would love to go again one day, it was so incredibly inspiring and interesting. I took away a wealth of experience and fashion knowledge, I enjoyed my time with Gal immensely and we got to know each other on a different level. I would highly recommend the *LFWend event to anyone interested in fashion and in the fashion/accessory industry.
*Please note the next event is at a different venue – 180 Strand
Our fabulous new jewellery collection is available now www.danon-jewellery.co.uk
I hope you enjoyed reading this as much as I enjoyed re-living the experience and writing it all down – please feel free to write your comments on this post below.